Haulden in Roswell (UC, ADULT) (Complete)

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Patroclus76
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Post by Patroclus76 » Sun May 06, 2007 3:31 am

Standing in front of us was Max, naked except for a sheet. He was, moreover, wearing it wrapped tightly around him, rather like my mother used to wear bath towels, with the obvious exception that he was showing his chest off. When I say Max, of course, I mean Wilcox. I could tell this from the fact that he still had short hair, slightly wayward at the top, and threatening to fall over his forehead. He had aged slightly, but not a great deal, and he skin shone with a taut, dark glow. The white sheet made him look rather like Epstein’s statue of Lazarus, and it showed off his arms, and the bulge of his genitals, magnificently.

`Fuck, you look fantastic!’ I slurred, while more appropriately, Grey asked

`The Granolith?’

`Yes – we haven’t entirely finished our investigations yet, but you’re right – all of you’ he looked about us, his eyes flashing their smile at me. `The Seeth originated from Earth. They suspected, but never knew until the Era of Experiments.’ Grey and DeMarr looked on in thoughtful silence. Whether they had heard this term before seemed irrelevant. I had, of course, or could dimly remember it being mentioned: the Seeth created the Skins, they sought to extend their life, even in all probability their power and in doing so they destroyed themselves, their joy of life, their ability to survive.

`We?’ I asked meanwhile.

`Yes, Brandon, and Liz – future Liz, she has been working undercover in Roswell! One of the many `passage-ways’ from Bone Hill House leads directly to the Pod Chamber itself.’

`Did the Seeth build the Granolith? In order to escape the destruction of Earth?’ questioned Grey eventually. He sounded unaccountably sober. I felt like I was in a play and had forgotten my lines, or the plot, or probably both. I was thinking about how weird it must be for Liz to have returned to Roswell, again! I was also thinking about Jonathan. Max shuffled forward slightly. Fuck I found it even more difficult to concentrate drunk when sober! We were close to some answers here, and yet all I could think about was Max’s sheet blowing away, revealing the chiselled, statuesque splendour of his physique.

`No. They didn’t build it. They found it, or rather they found the entrance of it from Antar. As eventually did Khi’var. When Seeth Sia Ova finds the evidence in Eqbatana, that Khi’var knows of Bone Hill House, Ova makes the mistaken assumption that he has designed it – and that the Skins built it for him. The truth was much – how should I say – revelatory? I only discovered the truth in 2044, when I had to fake my own death in order to get to the heart of the conspiracy on Antar.’

`Yeah?’ I said, rather loudly, and spinning one hand about as if I was directing traffic or something. Wilcox smiled, sort of, and I felt Grey’s hand on my shoulder.

`I think we can discuss this in council tomorrow – it’s late, James.’ Said Grey, all paternal like.

`Jamie.’ corrected Max-Wilcox, as if he owned me. Please own me! I felt a moment of clarity.

`Shit! Jonathan once told me that the root word of Granolith was – a threshold, a temple! When we talked of Illuvatar!’

`Exactly. But Julian is right. We can discuss this tomorrow.’ Max looked at me with a sort of longing in his eyes and I knew he was thinking of Jonathan as well, of the needlessness of his death.

`But who built something so extraordinarily complicated as the Granolith?’ asked Grey, not to be distracted.

`It was a gift. A gift to be found, a clue to our divinity, who we were as a race, a promise?’ Max said simply.

`A prophecy?’ I whispered. `That Earth and Antar would be one, and that you would return? Is that why the Seeth sent you back, with Isabel, Tess and Michael!’ My heart was thundering away in my chest.

`Jamie.’ Max’s voice was tired but intimate, the voice of a lover asked to make love again. `Tomorrow! I think we have all the answers now!’

There was a pause, and then Grey asked carefully `shall we keep an eye on Brandon?’

`No, Julian, thanks. I shall. He should be hatching soon,’ Max tightened his sheet around him, a disconcertingly feminine gesture, as if he was in a dress.

`And you? I mean, will you revert to Wilcox? Can you?’ Grey sounded concerned.

`Well we’re fucked if you can’t!’ I said bluntly before he could answer.

-----------------

At that moment we heard someone approaching from the hall. It was Kyle. He was singing some sort of song. I was too drunk to do anything, but Grey managed to grab Max’s sheet and pull him towards the cellar. DeMarr made a strange yelp, like someone had stood on his foot. Or perhaps it was Max.

`Ok – leave me – I’ll be fine.’ Max whispered, as the cellar door closed quickly, and Kyle, in boxers and a T-shirt, came around the corner. He froze, no doubt taken aback to be confronted by three people standing suspiciously alert at the far end of the kitchen.

`Hi,’ he said, slowly, like we had just been talking about him. `Everything ok?’

`Of course, Kyle, everything is going – marvelously.’ Grey seemed to be struggling with something. I then noticed that in his haste to shut the door he had trapped his dressing gown tassel.

`Was Max here? I thought I heard him?’

`No!’ we all said together, stupidly. Kyle’s eyes narrowed. He was looking at the cellar door. Not only had Grey trapped himself in it, but a not insignificant piece of Max’s sheet was sticking out from the side of the door as well.

`Ok, I am going to ignore this, whatever this is, and ask for some laxatives.’

`Ah.’ Said Grey, comprehending the matter immediately. `I’ll get you some immediately.’

`Well they’re for Michael actually –‘

`I told him!’ I said, theatrically, making strange gold fish movements with my mouth. I was boiling with outrage. `He never fucking listens to me, Kyle, never!’

`He never listens to anyone - Jamie have you been drinking?’

`A little. Perhaps. Why?’ I looked at Kyle like a drunkard looks at a policeman, the effort to convey sobriety so fake as to be farcical. However Kyle was not looking at me but was looking at the cellar door and the sheet, which was now moving – well wriggling – a great deal. Through the heavy door we could dimly here a sort of mumbling noise. Grey, conscious of the situation, said `laxatives’ but was unable to move because of his trapped tassel. It did not occur to him (nor indeed to me) to remove his fucking dressing gown. He was after all dressed underneath it!

`Louis, can you go and fetch Michael some laxatives, they're in my medicine cabinet in my study, next to my extra strong mints.’

`Professor Grey, is Brandon alright? What is that!’ Kyle pointed to the sheet.

`It’s a sheet, Kyle. A very large sheet, actually, and white. We thought Brandon might be getting cold.’

`Ah!’ There was a long pause. Kyle’s concentration shifted and he appeared to relax. However, just as the moment of crisis appeared to be passing, there came from within the cellar the distinct sound of tearing and ripping, We all sat watching in mute horror. Then a distinct voice from just inside the door said

`Julian! Jamie? Has Kyle gone?’ Kyle raised an eyebrow and looked at me inquisitorially. He then answered sarcastically

`No, he’s still here – and why are you hiding in the cellar, Max? What the fuck is going on!’ Grey looked suitably panicked, and went to bar Kyle approaching the cellar door just as Max’s voice stated rather plaintively (and loudly) `Speak up, Julian, I can’t hear you, and Julian, you’ve trapped my sheet in the door and I can’t move!’

`Fucking hell!’ I said, for no particular reason. Kyle grabbed the door and opened it, at which Max-Wilcox, precipitously released from captivity, fell down the stairs onto Brandon, with a sort of strangled scream.

`Max!’ Kyle shouted.

`It’s ok – Kyle!’ my mind raced into lie mode. `He’s – he’s drunk!! I’m sorry – it was my fault! I thought it would help!’

`How!’ Kyle, alarmed by the sight of Brandon embossed on the wall, nonetheless ran down the stairs to help Max get up. `Shit, Max – you ok – what have you done – you’ve cut your hair! Shit – Jamie!’ Kyle turned around and scolded me. `I of all people know what alcohol does to these guys! Come on, Max, let’s get you back into bed – Liz can deal with this!’ Kyle grabbed the sheet and helped Max up, who now acted suitably drunk.

`Jamie cut my hair, he wanted to make a pillow out of it!’ stammered Max. I looked outraged! (Damn good idea, though!)

`That figures, you perve! God this brings back memories!’ Kyle smiled, and yet I also saw him looking at Max carefully, attentively, looking at his body as if he sensed something had changed. He looked at Brandon and the white, crusted pod. `Come on, Max, let’s get you to bed. Jamie you are a very, very bad boy!’ he said, but now half in jest.

`I demanded it’ stammered Max. He wrapped his arms around Kyle and snuggled his face onto his friend’s shoulder. `Don’t let Liz see me like this – I’ll sleep with you!’

Kyle laughed, a little too knowingly for my liking, and instead of removing Max from his person, lingered in a curiously close embrace. `You’re cold, man!’ He ran his arms over Max’s broad, muscled back, each sinew and ligament as defined as a fucking river delta photographed from space. I launched myself towards the stairs.

`Come on Kyle, hurry, we need to get him into bed!’ I was about to pry them apart when I heard DeMarr return with the laxatives. I turned around and said, `Max has been drinking! Max is drunk! I mean he is really drunk!’ and made lots of suitably alarming gestures with my head and arms.

`Good gracious – which one?’ said DeMarr, at which I mimicked a howl.

DeMarr, surprisingly quick on the uptake – rattled the laxatives like candies. We all then heard Isabel calling from about three miles away – calling for Kyle.

`Jesus titty fucking Christ! IThe ice queen cometh!' Grey seemed slightly shocked at the language.

`Kyle! Where are you!‘ the voice was drawing near, like a train whistle approaches a fucking station.

`Hide me Kyle, Jamie!’ said Max. He said my name with such a tone of intoxicating familiarity that my hair (and cock) stood on end. I waded down and, with Kyle, whisked Max up the stairs. The sheet fell away and my King and Sovereign was completely naked. I felt we were at a wedding, with Kyle as the best fucking man!

`Quickly, here, this way!’ DeMarr led us around into one of the innumerable side rooms that led off from the main kitchen. After a frantic shuffle, we crouched into an alcove, Max sandwiched between Kyle and myself. He was facing me, his eyes brilliant and slightly ironic. I could also see Kyle’s face over his shoulder. He was trying not to laugh. He also had his knees on either side of Max’s thighs and his arms about his waist. Meanwhile I could smell Max, I could see his shoulders hunched forward, toned, edible. It was the most beautiful sight in the entire world.

`Half man, half beast’ I said softly. Max frowned to keep me silent, but his eyes were flirtatious, penetrative. He faked a silent growl, and then his eyes darted toward the voice of his sister.

`Sorry to bother you, Professor Grey, but have you seen Kyle?’ Isabel’s sounded all sweetness and light, with a tone of taut irritation just beneath.

`He’s gone to give Michael some laxatives, Isabel!’

`Ah, thank god – Michael has been sitting on the toilet for about two hours! He's completely - well - blocked!' We all tried hard not to laugh. Kyle bit his lip

`What a sight!’ Kyle whispered. `Michael grounded!' Max flashed a massive grin, trying to control himself.

`Have you seen Jamie?’ Isabel’s voice had come slightly closer. IShe was looking down into the cellar. I was looking into Max’s eyes. They stared at me, glowing in the semi-darkness. I inched closer to him.

`I think he’s gone to bed!’ Grey was sounding slightly the worst for wear. It must have been past midnight. `But – the laxatives will do the trick!’

`Sure – thanks.’ Isabel’s voice sounded distracted. `Such a relief, Jamie knows how to deal with Michael, I would never have thought they would become such friends!'

`Well, Jamie is with him now I guess!' said DeMarr.

`Excellent - hes been sitting on the toilet moaning and complaining, even Maria has given up. He wants someone to read to him or something!’

Kyle screwed up his face in a last desperate bid to keep silent. I was somewhere else though. I was brushing my lips against Max’s.

`I didn’t realise you and my Captain have become so, so intimate!’ whispered Max. He had lifted his fingers and was tracing out the line of my nose and eyebrows. He then turned my head slightly, and arching my neck forward, he kissed me. He was shaking slightly, because Kyle was vibrating with silent laughter
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Post by Patroclus76 » Fri May 11, 2007 12:26 pm

Kyle goes off with his laxatives, trying to head off Isabel en route to Michael. In front of a rather bemused Grey, I gather up Max-Wilcox’s sheet and place it around us both, like children pretending to be kings. Or am I still thinking of marriage!

We march off to his bedroom, which is cold and feels vulnerable, with its wide French windows revealing the unformed darkness across the estate. We are close to the end of things now; I sense it, like a doom about us. Max sits on the bed, yawning, a dark masculine wedge against the sheets. I have forgotten him like this. (Did I ever known him?). The brooding silence, the sense of hesitation, eyes full of questions, sparkling, and always the slight hint of danger, of a metal coil tightly wound.

`You haunt my every moment, Max. You are deep inside me, like a splinter! I'm a fucking addict, I'll never be cured!’ I say unexpectedly.

He sort of shrugs, as if he should apologise.

`Good!’

I smile and add,

`And you had better get some rest, it might help your regeneration?’ I feel sober now, infinitely tired. So tired I feel outside of myself, and that everything is brittle and two-dimensional, except Max of course. Max has never looked more real.


He is looking at me as if I am something profoundly difficult or important. He has his hands palm together, thrust between his thighs, with his legs over the side of the bed. His broad forearms, slightly turned, hide his genitals and the short smudge of black, pubic hair. He looks like a patient about to undergo an examination. His thighs are dimpled, swelling into firm, toned buttocks.

`Kyle might have to be briefed about tonight, or should we let him be discrete? He might say something to Liz? About me being drunk?’ I am distracted from looking at his feet.

`Kyle will be fine, darling. Presumably you will have to reveal yourself in a few hours when we are in council, anyway? I am sure Max suspects already – you have forgotten how inquisitive your younger self can be!’ I smile. It is a possessive smile.

`Yeah, I think you’re right – but I am worried how Liz will take it, though.’

`Liz? What do you mean?’ I get up from the chair by the window and come over to him. He looks up at me, boyish, exhausted. At times like this his eyes look hennaed.

`It’s complex – but Liz has already had some experience of meeting multiple Maxs! It might concern her? She hasn't told Max about her experiences yet. She won't tell him about Future Max until 2023!’

I frown. The bed creaks as I sit, and Max flops his head on my shoulder. I run my hand over him, feeling him beneath me like a bow, a curve of hard flesh and bone. Hybrid. Half human, half alien. No, half fucking dinosaur!!!

`Really?’ I am curious and want to ask but I know he will not tell me. Indtead I say

`She’s a dark horse that one! I am sure Liz will be fine!’ There is a silence. I want to peel my clothes off and climb in besides him. I kiss his forehead below his thicket of hair, black and massed like spears on a hillside.

`Max?’ This name sounds odd, but he is not Wilcox. `Max, when did we first make love?’ There is a strange sense of longing in my voice. His voice growls, unsure, almost beyond the range of human hearing.

`After Copper Summit, when I was in limbo, between Liz and Tess. And as I struggled to deal with the realisation that Isabel was Vilandra. I had to go to New York. Do you not remember?’ I sigh deeply. I say softly, almost sorrowfully

`It didn’t happen – or rather – it didn’t happen in this time line.’ I bite my lip tentatively.

Max sounds puzzled.

`Really?'

`No. It nearly just happened, yesterday, en route here, but we stood back from the brink as it were.’

`Because of Liz?’

`Yes.’ I stroke the top of his shoulders.

`That’s curious. At Copper Summit I think I half slept with you because I needed someone, and because I was still resisting the idea of being with Tess.’

I closed my eyes tightly. I had forgotten the sheer pain and chaos of those bizarre years. It was just before I left Roswell, just as the duplicate royal four showed up, the moment that my geeky gay boy brain finally understood that I was not just obsessed with Max, his physical form, his body – but that I was deeply and hopelessly in love with him. An adult love, like a deep pain.

`Yeah, I remember that. I remember you going to New York.’ I remember Liz as well, sobbing uncontrollably, sitting in the Crashdown, with the others. I remembered Ava telling Liz that Max had changed her.

`Did we keep sleeping with each other?’ I feel Max half smile at the tone of sheer fucking hope in my voice.

`Yeah – we did! You talked with Liz after we met up at the conference!’

`What conference?’ I catch sight of our reflections in the blackness of the French Windows. We look utterly right together. `The alien summit in New York? Did I go with you?’

`No! Years later. You were one of the scientists who attended the examination of Om after he was hatched! Grey allowed you onto one of the teams because he knew you were one of DeMarr’s favorite students! ’

`Jesus – that is so weird – so I was there, somewhere, in the last codex?’ I remember my acute sense of disappointment on first seeing – living – Grey's journal. The disappointment of feeling that I had been air brushed out of Max and the aliens life for ever.

`So I was a working on genetics then, the first time around, or the third time around, or how many fucking times we have been around this! But I don’t understand how I could have been in the photograph, the one with me, you, Michael and Isabel, standing in the clearing – we were coming to Bone Hill House? Surely we met before?’ But Max is asleep. His body is warm and heavy. I am beginning to suspect that I will never fully understand this business about time travel. Continuities, discontinuities, like dreams. Places that are familiar but different, things that happened but not in the right order. Things misremembered.

I sigh again and reluctantly place him lengthways and cover him with sheets. Again the urge to hold him, to feel my skin against his, to taste his mouth, is almost overwhelming.

`Odd as well to think that at New York, Khi'var was seeking information on the Granolith, as to it's whereabouts.' I muse out loud, to myself. Max had told me all this on his return, as I helped my dysfunctional parents pack to leave. Max had also told me that the other delegates had been shocked at the news that the Granolith was somewhere on Earth. Had Khi'var, by then, stumbled onto the plans of Bone Hill House, the evidence of the Granolith? How was this linked to the one under the pod chamber, the one from which Tess escaped?

I stand and look at him for what seems ages until I am conscious of a curious sensation in the back of my neck, and a sense of burning on my tattooed tit. And as I turn, I realise that I am being watched.

Someone, something, is standing just outside the French doors. In the jumble of juxtaposed, reflected images, the room, Max’s bed, the cone of light, I see a face, grey-blue, alien. It is looking at me intently, but through what appears to be blind eyes. I am about to scream when suddenly I realise I have seen this face before.

It is the face of the Antarian Emissary, Seeth Sia Ova
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Post by Patroclus76 » Thu May 17, 2007 2:53 am

Seeth Sia Ova looks at me – I think. It’s hard to make out. For a moment I think I am merely hallucinating. For a moment all I see is the head, floating, detached, with no sign of a neck or even a body! And then I feel the Antarian inside my head. Rather gently but insistently turning over my secrets. It’s like turning the corner into your bedroom and finding a complete stranger standing there, going through your stuff, holding up your soiled boxers! Or looking at your porno!

I feel panic and embarrassment well up around me and yet I struggle to keep my head clear, to stay calm. Shapes, colors, places, all whirl behind my eyes. And then I say (or think) something I do not understand.

`Mein Ka Q’uam sevak, Jamie quam - illuva kar quendi!’ I am stunned by this linguistic feast, but I feel as if the syllables have been pulled out of my nose. My eyes water.

Even with a face as bereft of facial muscles as Seeth Sia Ova, the shock of my fluent Antarian is visible. She sort of opens her mouth and wrinkles her nose. Moreover I sense her utter bewilderment! Since my eyes have now adjusted to the darkness, I can make out a thin grey body and a long neck.

`Me en sai et?’ says a curiously reedy voice, eventually, inside my head. It is a voice of the wind, something unaccountably old and barren. It is barely a whisper. It is shocked and incredulous. My head translates it as roughly the Antarian equivalent of `What the fuck!’

There is a stunned pause, and then I see that something is happening to Max-Wilcox. I see it first of all in the reflection, superimposed on Seeth’s elongated, distorted face. I see that something is glowing around his head. For a moment I think `shit, it’s a real life halo. He IS divine! I KNEW IT!' and then I realise that it is the royal seal of Antar, the holographic projection of the home world and the planets of the Imperium, lose and whirling about the bedroom like a mini planetarium.

I half turn to have a closer look, and as I do so, I see that my breast is glowing as well – blue – bright luminous blue, as if Max planted a diode in me! As if this is not enough fucking excitement, I feel something start to unbutton my shirt! I look around startled and then a voice says – in American - `I will not harm you.’ The shirt unbuttons itself down to my navel, and then peels itself back to expose my pectorals and then gently, but quite insistently, I am turned around and inspected closely. Seeth Sia Ova is evidently shocked by the tattoo. I sense it radiate out of her. A revelation. It stands out clearly on my chest as a blue lined letter S, with a wide bottom curl, and a small top, intricately shaded. It looks like a snake or a coil of gold.

`Excuse me!’ I snatch my shirt and, rather prudishly cover myself. I look up into the sightless, all seeing eyes of the Emissary. There is no one there. I pull my shirt back on. Behind me the Seal fades amid a slight hum. Max-Zan is smiling in his sleep as if he has just got a complex, cosmic joke.

Then I hear a sort of commotion in the depths of the House. A sort of far off stampede. I trust Max-Wilcox to his own devices and run off back towards the kitchens. Fucking hell! We are well into the final movement of the Antarian symphony now! What did the Austrian Emperor say of Mozart's music? `Too many notes!'. I run and as I run, I become aware that someone is calling my name. Then I hear someone calling for Michael. It is far off, like an echo. I take a wrong turn and the noise dims. I turn back, and run through long, seemingly abandoned halls with odd, black stoned Doric columns. They do not belong here, they are too alien.

I stop to look at them. They are quite bizarre, huge, almost monolithic, their capitals carved heavily with an intricate design. Lizards. They are decorated with chains of bejewelled lizards! I pause, breathless, and touch them. They are cold, hard. The lizards are like snakes, with exaggerated, stylised heads like S’s, my tattoo! Everywhere – my tattoo is a fucking temple!

I panic. What does this mean – where the fuck am I! I run back to where I think the kitchens are, skidding on an over polished marble floor (damn Wilcox - I bet he has one of those whirly polishing machines and spends hours here!) but Bone Hill House seems especially enormous and as I keep running I have a really bizarre feeling that I am running on the inside of an expanding bubble – that no matter how fast I run, the distance in front of me does not diminish, but continues to expand away. And then I hear my name called from behind.

Anxiously I turn and I see that great blushes of light, like sunlight, are rolling through the columns. These now stretch away, in parallel lines, toward infinity, and there is no longer any roof! There is an open, purpled sky, wreathed with fume. For a moment I think it might be the effect of the alcohol. I stop in open amazement. It is the sun! I turn and run like a mad man, because at that moment I realise I am no longer in Bone Hill House. I am in the ancient Monastery of Eqbatana!

I remember without knowing. I am in the Chamber of Kings.

My panic chokes me. And then I see, just in front of me, through two of the columns, the corridor that leads to the kitchens in Bone Hill House! Like an optical illusion, or an intricate side detail in a Dutch painting, a landscape or a room glimpsed through a window, Eqbatana and Earth are connected by a slender thread. I run like mad – forcing my mind to concentrate – forcing myself forward. I reach the portal and literally throw myself through it!

Next minute I am on the floor of the main hallway, where Liz is talking with Julian Grey. Julian looks a bit bewildered at my sudden appearance, as if he had just nodded off after a series of adventures only to be rudely awoken to another! In fact he looks like he had nodded off in his chair only to have a book hit him from a great height. Liz literally jumps as I appear, but then says

`Jamie, thank god! Max’s head has just exploded with the royal seal – you know the whole Antar system in glorious 3-D!’ Liz is breathless. She has been running. Michael is charging down the stairs, rather indelicately hitching his jeans up as he does so.

`Can’t a man dump without a fucking riot taking place! Are we under attack?’

`Michael!’ Liz exclaims, clearly over-excited. Then Max himself appears, at the next landing up from Michael, leaning over, waving, so its like looking at a fucking Escher print! Parallel stairs that never meet, that never rise, that repeat endlessly. He is dressing quickly, his hair long and confused, his face creased with sleep. The deception over Wilcox comes instantly to mind, although there is as yet no sign of Kyle. Grey is looking at me suspiciously. `And where have you been?' he asks.

`I’ll explain later!’ I whisper. Liz helps me up. She seems unimpressed by my sudden manifestation.

`It’s alright – guys. It's ok!’ I feel like I need a flag or a loud speaker to calm them down! I feel I should announce `Disperse and go back to your homes!’ Instead I say,

`It’s the Antarian Emissary, she has arrived! Seeth Sia Ova!’ I sound hysterical, overjoyed, as if I am announcing the arrival of Santa Clause or a favorite maiden Aunt! Yet my news seems to cause consternation. Everyone looks a little stunned.

`What! Have you seen them!’ Michael turns the last bend on the staircase, holding his belt out like a parachutist about to pull a rip cord.

`Yes – just now, with Wilcox. Seeth Sia Ova was at the window!’

`Oh my god! Max!’ Liz grabs her stomach as if to emphasise the significance of the news. We hear Max running towards us, shouting a question,

`Jamie – Seeth Sia Ova is our friend, right?’

`Yes, definitely. She is the instigator of the coup against Khi’var, and she knows about Liz’s children through Tess, because she examines Tess’ child – Davies of course – to see whether it is the child they are seeking after Tess escapes!’

I am about to say `don’t you remember?' when of course I realise that neither he or I were there! Instead I ramble on

`It’s complicated – but this is good news! She will be able to help us against Davies and the Feds! She has come to ask you to help heal the disorders of Antar!’

A great stab of excitement overwhelms me, and judging by the expression on his face, Michael too! He too remembers the moment in Grey’s codex.

`Fantastic! The cavalry has arrived!’ I hug him and then grab Max and Liz!

`You’re sure about this?’ asks Grey cautiously, slightly denting the party mood. `Did the Seeth communicate with Wilcox? Did she recognise him? ’ Grey asks this in a peculiar way, coded for me and perhaps for Michael. I can see him thinking `Did Seeth recognise Max as an older version of himself? Will she not be confused to find TWO of them!’

We stand, our gaze locked together. I say, somewhat unconvincingly,

`Definitely! I mean, I think she was a little confused – about me – that is!‘

`Confused?’ Max is now holding Liz to him, trying to calm her. He is alert and wide awake now. `What do you mean, Jamie. Confused?’

`Seeth Sia Ova started to read my mind – she was outside the French doors, looking in – and I think that she was surprised that I knew who she was! Somehow I spoke to her in – well – Lizard speak!’

`Huh?’ asked Max.

`I mean Antarian, sorry!’ I bit my lip, noting that Grey has raised his eyebrows.

`What did you say?’ asks Michael - `Do you want sex with me!’

`Michael!’ I am shocked but relent when I see him grinning.

`I think I said, `Greetings Great Seeth, I am Jamie, and we are the destiny of the land? Or something weird’

`You speak her language?’ stammers Max.

`Fucking egomaniac!’ Michael slaps my face affectionately. `That a boy! Next time just try,`take me to your leader!’ Yet his face then grew slightly serious. `We still need to be careful - she doesn’t know of the changes to the time line yet –‘ Michael mused, having also caught Grey’s drift.

We all seemed so dwarfed by the great entrance hall. It was as if since the curious vision of Antar, Bone Hill House had not settled down properly to its earthy dimensions. `And she has arrived a full two months early, Jamie, can we be sure it is the same Seeth Sia Ova? On the same mission? I mean, how do we know that things have happened on Antar as before, because they sure as fuck haven’t here!’ I find the thought disconcerting. Michael might be right.

`Like Khi’var being dead here, and not dead in Eqbatana as before?’ Max asks, looking at me, his hands now clasped protectively over Liz’s abdomen.

`Well, we can’t be sure – but even if things have changed – I think the motives are the same! Think about it, Michael. The flash we saw at the gatehouse fetching Wilcox, it was clearly Antarian, not the Feds. And had they wished to attack us they couldn’t have picked a better time – and just now – Seeth Sia Ova was watching, trying to work out what to do – hardly the action of an enemy!’

`Did she reply to your universal greeting?’ asked Max, smirking at me slightly.

`I think she said something like `how can this be!’

Michael laughs, satisfied and then groaning, feels his stomach as well. Max, too, looks less guarded. He squeezes his wife gently. `Liz, it’s going to be fine – we’re in safe hands!’ he looks up me, a piercing look of inclusion.

`Will they take the children from me, Jamie, will they take Max back to Antar?’ her voice is clouded with anxiety, like before.

`Yes, but only with your permission, Liz, and Om will return. Max will go, too and Earth – god the excitement, the President of the US will be here for supper, probably! The Bone Hill House Protocols! They are about to be signed!!’

As I say this I realise that nothing will be the same again – Earth is about to be forged to the destiny of another planet. It is a moment of revelation, a turning of an era.

`Jamie man, what are you talking about!’ Max looks excited too, but also vaguely shocked.

Isabel and Kyle both turn up at this moment, bewildered and a little dishevelled. It’s like one of those scenes in a Shakespeare play that starts with the stage directions of `enter Queen Isabel and attendant alarums, drums and sword.

`What’s going on, Max!’ Isabel shouts, ready to blast someone – anyone – through a wall.

`It’s ok Iz, the Antarians are here – Jamie just met Seeth Sia Ova!’ shouts Michael. I am conscious that Kyle is looking at Max intently.

`Who?’ says Isabel, puzzled, lowering her hand a little.

`Nice touch!’ says Kyle to Max, as he draws along side.

`Sorry?’ says Max, bemused.

`The hair! Jamie glue it back on for you? ’ and then Kyle winks at me.

`So, false alarm, we can go back to bed? Or are we to have an audience with them immediately?’

`Jamie, where is the Emissary now?’ Grey asks this. He seems to have gathered himself together a bit more. He has stopped rubbing his eyes in that rather disconcertingly vigorous way that adults do sometimes. He still sounds anxious but his mind is engaged.

`She disappeared – but I am sure she will come back!‘

`We should use the communication orbs!’ says Max with sudden determination. `We should contact her now and invite her to our council! The Feds will be here any minute! We need them now’

`Hold it, Max' cautions Michael. `The last time she appeared here, in the hallway – wasn’t that right?’He asks this of me, and then belches. `She summoned us to a council, if I remember? It was here that she greets Zan! God this is so exciting!’

`Yes! After she disturbed Grey in his laboratory, and steals all the data and leaves the Head!‘

`Fuck, the head!' Michael and I both say together!

`Will you two just stop reminiscing for a moment!’ Isabel sounds tetchy.

`God it’s like the multiverse!’ says Liz. Grey looks surprised at this comment but nods.

`It is indeed Liz, indeed I think that might be part of the explanation. Multiple parallel universes playing out every possible permutation of an event!’

Michael rolls his eyes. `Yeah, but somehow all mixed up, spliced together, fuck! Ok, I’ll get the orbs! Kyle dude, you’re with me!’ Michael swings around and is off like a retriever.

`Michael – be careful – the House, it’s seems to be rather active – it seems to be linking itself with Antar!’

`OK!’ he calls back, as if I have just told him to wrap up warm.

`Has he had a bowel movement yet?’ I then ask Isabel. Max, frowning, laughs.

`I don’t know – you’ve been with him for the last three hours reading him extracts from Joyce’s Ulysses!’

Max is shaking his head, beautifully bewildered.
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Post by Patroclus76 » Wed May 23, 2007 1:46 pm

"Is it usually as action packed as all this?’ Grey asks me, as Michael and Kyle run off towards the van. We have all walked towards the wide, window filled room that joins the conservatory. It is a huge room, elegant, like something you would find on an Ocean liner, something lost now, like Grey's Rolls Royce.

`Unfortunately it is – and we might have some real fire works soon, if I remember – when the ships come!‘

Maria has arrived as well now, her eyelids almost glued together. `God, when will this end! What now!’ she gasps as she hugs Liz.

`Soon Maria, soon! It looks like we’re close to the end now!’ Max let’s Maria take hold of his wife and walks over to me. DeMarr is probably still deeply asleep dreaming of his parrot.

`You look tired, Max’ I say, with infinite tenderness, as he sits down close to me. The proximity of this older, darker Max is like a drug, my fix. The power of his body seems to displace me. He moves his face to my ear. We are undermining the second law of thermodynamics: that two objects cannot occupy the same space.

`What?’ I say quietly, hoping he is going to bite.

` I am making you my emissary, Jamie, with full negotiating rights – and full access to the Royal Bed Chamber - on one condition.’

My mouth is so dry I can hardly speak.

`Ok, the condition being?’ I am not sure he is being entirely serious. There is a playful sense of danger about him. He is whispering so close to my ear that I feel a huge tingle across neck.

`That you talk with my wife, and afterwards, you tell me everything about the codex, and then finally, you stop conspiring with my beautiful First in command, even if it is for the greater good.’

`That’s three conditions’ I say.

He smirks slightly, threading his hair behind his ears. `They’re sub clauses of one condition!’ I go to say something but he takes me by the bicep in a vice like grip. He then runs his hand up and over me appreciatively, as if he is going to buy me in an auction.

`Who IS Wilcox, Jamie? And who is Brandon, I mean, when he’s not a decorative addition to the cellar! And how come you're fluent in an alien language all of a sudden, and finally’ – he pulled me towards him and fixed his eyes on mine. I was about to faint. God knows what I would do during serious foreplay! Catch alight! Die?

`Why do you keep playing with your left tit?’

`Look, Max! Wilcox is – well – look, he’ll tell you tomorrow. Max –‘ I say with emphasis, in case he thinks I am holding something back. `It’s not for me to say – but he and Brandon saved us, they killed Khi’var. They're on our side! And the tit thing. When we got into bed together and, well, kissed, something happened to my tit – you left a mark, it’s developed into a sort of tattoo - Trust me.’

`I do.’ He says simply. `Can I see?’ He pulls a face.

`No, not here – I mean! Not now!’

`Ok. I will examine you later.’ He says this quietly, as if I have been naughty and will be punished. He releases me. All the blood in my head dives downwards again. I am just a giant cock at times like this, with my brain in my balls. `Sure' I say in ecstasy.

---------

Michael and Kyle turn up, shivering and both talking at once. They have seen something, over the estate, high in the sky. A thin, silver disk, radiating and pulsing, and then moving off at speed. `The entire State must have seen it!’ says Kyle. Michael is carrying a box. He puts it down on a long walnut table, elegantly polished by the wall, and removes two elongated purple spheres.

`Ok, Maxy, Maxy! Time to phone home!' Kyle rather unceremoniously throws them to Max. `Actually, they remind me of my dad.’ he says, `He brought one home that night, from Buckley Point.’

`Yeah, the night my leader punched me!’ says Michael brightly. Maria laughs, recalling something. `You were asking for it, if I recall!’ she says.

`You were being insubordinate!’ says Max, catching the communication devices deftly. `I remember it well. It was the last time we saw Topolsky alive’ Max adds, seriously. He looks at me. `Well, let’s get this over with! Jamie? Any formal words of introduction? Any advice on technique?’

`Just close your eyes and go for it!’ I say, smiling.

`He’s talking about the communication devices, Jamie!’ smirks Michael. I stick my tongue out at him.

Max closes his eyes and he concentrates. For a while nothing happens and then suddenly, two great beams of light jump up through the high ceiling. It is an astounding sight. Max thinks something; he articulates some message, his lips move as if he is whispering a prayer. There is slight hum and then the light beams quiver, ripple like columns of water, and tvanish.

`Well, that’s that!’ says Isabel, innocently.

-----------

`So what do we do now?’ Grey asks this. He is looking at the orbs, whose brilliant, candescent light has fallen back ito Max’s hands. Max, shadowed, sighs deeply and looks up at Julian as one awakes from a dream.

`We wait. The ships have arrived, if things go as before, it is not long before the Seeth come to speak with us! Is that right Jamie?’

I nod. `Yes.’ I say. `They have come to carry your child home!’

A wintery smile crosses Grey’s face, the ghosts of many memories. It is the smile of a man who has waited most of his life.

`Ok, I’m out of here! Wake me when they arrive!' says Michael, yawning. Maria, Isabel and Kyle all return slowly up the great staircase, like a crowd dispersing. Max, half turns and looks at Liz, his hair curtains his face, he looks like someone literally outside of time. Momentarily I wonder what is rushing through his head. This is his destiny now, as well as ours. But he is at the center of it. We are on the brink. Around us, the people and events that configured the codex, line up anew in differing combinations and differing sequences, but the conjunction is close now. I recognise the place even though it is not the same. Isn’t that odd? Like dreaming about someone you know but have never met. Or dreaming about a house or a place that is changed but which you know is home, your grandma’s house, the house of your best friend. Is all this a dream?

`Jamie?’ Liz is standing next to me. Max is talking with Julian, discussing something about the security, about the gate house. Liz is touching my shoulder.

`Jamie, can you come and stay with me, now I mean, I’m scared!’ She looks beautiful and yet vulnerable saying this. She is biting her lower lip and there are dark circles under her eyes. She looks suddenly quite pregnant.

`Of course, Liz , but Liz it’s going to be fine – you have to have faith – you know, in yourself, in Max, and -’ my voice faltered, `in those around you!’

`I do! Jamie – I do,’ her voice falls to a whisper. Max walks towards us and sweeps us both up in his arms, directing us towards the stairs.

`Ok, let’s get some rest – we might have time for a few hours sleep – before all the fun begins!’ he sounded authoritative, his mind has been made up, I love this mood. We climb up into the chill gloom of the first landing. Cavernous hallways open up around us, while above us, tapering into the central vault around which Bone Hill House is aligned, a deep brooding silence settles on us like a fog.

We walk back towards the front of the house and come at last to a suite of rooms that Liz, Max and apparently Maria and Michael have all colonised. It seems odd that in a place of so many rooms, so many bizarre and redundant duplicates (bedrooms, sitting rooms, dining rooms) that my friends should want to be so close together.

Max hesitates as Liz climbs back into bed. What am I to do? There are some other beds in the room but in darkness and all unmade. `I think I should shower?’ I say, half apologetically. I cannot actually remember the last time I washed – had it been with Max, this morning that I discovered my tattoo?

`Get some rest Jamie, you look exhausted!’ Max kisses me, there is nothing furtive now, no brushing of the cheek. He turns my face to him and seeks out my lips with his. They linger. I feel self conscious and start to blush, but he has already turned to kiss his wife.

`Let me go check out Michael – I don’t want him catching a chill on the can!’ As he turns to go he looks at me intently. I nod at him. Although part of me is looking at him helplessly. I look at Liz.

--------------------

She pats the bed playfully `Come on!’ There is a small bedside lamp on, a sort of ship with the bulb fitted in what appears to be the sail. It is a rather boyish thing, from the 1950s. I wonder fleeting about its history, where it came from, how it came to be in Bone Hill House and how, eventually and by what route, it came to be in this long room full of beds.

`Jamie take off your shirt and get in – ‘ Liz adds, somewhat mischievously. Has Max set me up – is this a Max-Liz plan?

I take my shirt off and as I do so I can smell my own stale sweat. It is the sort of smell that on others I might, in certain circumstances, find erotic. Liz watches me remove it. I unbutton my pants and peel them off, one leg at a time. When I climb in, she is looking at my tattoo.

`When did you have that done!’ she traces it out with her finger. I find that her touch arouses me. I look at her. She is covered in a lose shirt, probably Max’s. Her thighs are smooth and warm. She seems so incredibly petite and perfect.

`Max did it,’ I say, distractedly, turning around on my side to look at her. Vague recollections stir of sleepovers, of time spent on the road with my family, or going to Vegas, or more dreaded science trips with Max tantalisingly close but beyond reach in some fucking tent!

`Yeah, right!’ she fusses about with her pillows, and goes to switch the light off. As she extends her arm I see her breasts briefly.

`No, seriously! He did it! Hey. Leave the light a minute, Liz.’ My tone catches her unawares. She pauses, seemingly wide awake, and turns to me, hitching down the sheets so we are lying side by side, turned in to face each other. She suddenly brushes my hair, a familiar gesture. She is smiling.

`This brings back memories – ‘ and we both start laughing. We are both thinking of the night that, damaged by my hair dye, and half killed by Kyle’s father in his jeep, I was carted off to stay at Liz’s parents! It was the night that I discovered that my then working hypothesis – that Max and Michael were alien lovers – might be flawed. Now of course, in the great scheme of things, it was probably less flawed than I first thought!

`It was the night you told me you loved Max, can you remember!’ she says this half teasingly, but she is looking at me with her clear, sharp eyes. I sense a trap of sorts. Something long thought about. Or witnessed. I feel awkward.

`Yes, I remember.’ But then I can’t help smiling because I suddenly remember Nancy Parker fetching me to speak with Michael on the phone `boy trouble!’ she had said, all sympathy and tolerance. If only she had known!

`You’ve changed so much Jamie, I mean – what happened to that geeky boy with all those bad T-shirts!!’

`Hey! They just fit me better now! We’ve all changed, I mean – look at you, harder now, very organised and sharp! Look at Max! When I first met Max during the snowstorm, after Isabel dream walked me, I was shocked at the change in him – ‘

`Really?’ muses Liz. `Or were you shocked at the enormity of your feelings for him, that they could still be there, deep inside you, after all those years?’

She is still stroking my hair. I feel very emotional suddenly, upset. For a while I am not sure I can answer. Eventually I say

`Yeah. I had pretended to be alive, Liz – it was a good imitation, but when I saw him, dazzling against the snow, so changed, so dark, I realised – that I had been dead without him.’

`I know what that feels like, Jamie. More to the point, I know how you feel about Max, Jamie. I see it every time I look at you, in everything you do – everything you say! There is not a moment when I do not see it shine out from you!’

`Liz –‘ I interrupt, taking her hand. I kiss it, and then I lay holding it, my eyes full of tears.

`I want to sleep with him, Liz. I know it’s wrong, I know I shouldn’t have these feelings, and I have tried to deal with them, to put them aside,and that my love ought to be platonic!’ She goes to interrupt but I sit up, passionate in my defense

`But I can’t help it and the other night – last night – I wanted to but – but I couldn’t, he couldn’t – we couldn’t! Fuck! This is madness! I don’t know what I am doing!’ I go to swing my feet out and run, anywhere, away from this.

Liz calmly puts her hands on my shoulder.

`Jamie, just stay here for a minute, it’s fine – talk to me about it. I was your friend before Max’s!’

I smile, relenting into her touch. She caresses me. I wonder if this is how Max feels when she touches him? She comes close and starts to massage my neck. She blows the curls of my hair and I shiver.

`But it’s not just sleeping with him, Liz. I’d have to come back for more. I couldn’t love him in a corner – ‘ I look at her shyly, conscious of what I am trying to ask her.

Liz is looking at me, half seriously, but there is a lightness about her face that un-nerves me.

`You want to share him? With me? Is that what you’re asking?’ her voice is soft, slightly ironic. She seems to be struggling with some emotion, either great anger or sorrow or something! I remember her condition, the pregnancy, the huge importance of this all. The fate of two planets rest on Liz and her babies and all I can think of is Max and sex!

`This is not the time, Liz. What am I thinking – I’m such a selfish bastard! That he came to me again is enough, that I have what I have is enough’

`But it isn’t is it?’ she says heavily.

`No. It isn’t.’

She looks up, thoughtfully.

`Of course he wants to sleep with you as well.’ She says deftly. She has stopped massaging my neck and has moved out to my shoulders. I try to remain calm but I swing around and look at her. She rests her hands on my elbows.

`What!’

`He wants to sleep with you. He wants to take you as a lover. He asked me just before we had sex, the night in your apartment, when I became pregnant! He asked my permission!’

`What? I can’t remember that bit of the conservation!’ I say, indiscreetly, although of course I was deep in conversation with Michael. Liz frowns, knowingly. There is a thread of silence between us.

`So what did you say? I mean, about giving permission? ‘My voice is very small and quiet, as if I can disguise the gravity of the question by trying to sound indifferent. I look down, to avoid her eyes, and stare at her cleavage. I have a sudden and almost overwhelming desire to bury my face in it.

`I can’t share him with you, Jamie. I mean, that would make us equal, wouldn’t it? Are we equals in his affection? I am his wife, he saved my life, and I have lost him before. Could I risk losing him again?.’

I am slightly un-nerved by her directness. I sigh. I feel sick, or as if someone has stabbed me hard in the stomach.

`No, we are not equals, you’re right. I would never get in the way of your love. I know what you mean to him, and what he means to you! I’ve always known. I guess I would always be a slight distraction, a variation on a theme, or something!’

There is little I can do to stop the tears that dribble unceremoniously down my cheeks.

`The terrible thing was that, as I climbed into bed with him I felt like – Tess – I felt like I was seducing him. I hated her so much!’ I go to sit up, to withdraw, to do something, to somehow make this bearable.

Then Liz laughs. It is brilliant, clear laugher, like light, spreading around us both.

`Look at you!’ she says, sighing, and hugging me. She kisses the side of my face, and keeps it there, her cheek on mine.

`Jamie, Max has enough love for both of us, and my love brooks no rival! And you are not my rival. You are not Tess, Jamie. Our love is complementary; half of infinity is still infinite. What he gives to you is not half of what he gives to me, and you love me as well! I have always felt it. Perhaps not in the same way! I share Max with the world because well, we are really part of the same thing! I mean, we – ‘

`You have the same soul.’ I finish for her. She frowns as if she thinks I am being cheesy.

`You could say that. And then, let’s be honest, you’re not the first man Max has slept with!’

I start to laugh. I am still crying, but my laughter make my chest feel hot.

`When did you know that they – I mean that Max and Michael slept together?’

Liz draws us back down onto the bed.

`Well!’ she says, and her eyes flash at me `I never really knew about such things to be honest – well – you know – in reality! I mean, I always thought Alex was gay, which is so unfair to Alex and to gays in general –‘

`Well I always did, actually!’ I say, threatening to take us off on a tangent. `Until he wore that hat on Father's weekend - no gay boy would ever have worn that!'

We laugh. A huge relief is thawing out my anxiety.

`Obviously I knew that Max and Michael were close. The night Michael left Roswell, after Hank hit him – Max came to my window, I had never seen him so distressed. He said he couldn’t lose Michael, but it was only after the fiasco at the hospital with the blood – ‘

`I know,’ I interrupt. I interrupt because, in my mind’s eye, I see the look on Michael’s face when Liz appeared in the bay, the look when Max introduced her to his mother. `I saw Michael’s expression as well – hey! So wait a minute!’

I change my tune, `SO I WAS right – they were alien lovers!’

Liz slaps my stomach playfully.

`Sort of. After Max went off to find you, when he realised you had examined his blood, Michael came over to see me. He has been crying, his eyes were all puffy and red but he said he had hay fever!’

`That’s so Michael! What did he do? Did he tell you everything?’

`Eventually. First off he gave me something – something he had stolen from Max’s bedroom!’

I smiled to myself, recalling the moment when Michael opened up to me, sitting in the dark, listening to Liz and Max doing the business. `You’re obviously not referring to the journal? Let me guess - he returned Max’s pillow? The one he had stolen earlier!’ Liz looked genuinely amazed.

`Yes, the one with Max’s smell on it!’

`oh God!’ we both say appreciatively, as if we have just discovered we like the same candy! We are rolling together in sheer joy! `What does he smell of? What IS it!' I shriek.

`Autumn, or a summer rain after a dry spell!’ says Liz precisely.

`Thyme. That lemon grass thyme!’

We both laugh.

`Sorry – what did Michael say when he gave you back the pillow!’

Liz sat up and said with relish `he said that he loved Max but that he realised that Max loved me more and that it was time to let him go, and that he would do so as a token of his love! That his love for Max extended to those he loved – it was a bit Pythagorean! God, he was so noble and emotional. I was really shocked, and yet at the same time, I have to confess that I found the whole thing incredibly horny!’

`Horny!’ I think I shout this because Liz looks alarmed and says, `Ssh, not so loud!’

`Sorry – you find it horny? God I do! I mean I did – I have always jacked off to the idea of those two fucking! Oh sorry!’

`Jamie!’ Liz says, squeaking with laughter `That’s a little too much information!’ but she looked VERY interested and added, quietly,. `I know exactly what you mean! Sometimes in the van, after we’d left Roswell, I’d sometimes wake up to find Michael and Max on either side of me, as if Michael had come back to stake his claim! Anyway, I told him I didn’t really mind – but for a while they drifted apart and, as you know, they spent almost a year at each others throats. That was horrible!’

`It was probably Michael’s way of dealing with rejection – trying to turn his love into hatred, like an alchemist destroying his gold!’ We lapse into silence again.

`So – I can love Max and you will not be angry or jealous?’ I ask, just to be sure I have not missed anything.

`Yes you can and no, I will not be jealous. We might have boundary issues. Will you? Be jealous I mean?’

`I’m not sure – no – I will not be jealous. I mean, I’m not competing with you, you’re a woman and I mean – ‘

`Quite. Michael might be jealous,’ adds Liz tactfully.

`No, I think he has already given it his blessing – sort of – ‘ I try not to sound as if I been planning this for week.

`I see,’ says Liz craftily. She then traces out my chest with her hand.

`And I think that Max has already marked you as his property!’

`So you do believe that Max did this!’ and then I ask `Do you have one?’

`Yes!’

`In the same place?’

Liz nodded.

`Wow – can I see?’

Liz rolls her eyes but her reserve is fake. She opens her shirt and I look at her left breast, full and rounded, with the nipple dark and exotic. I take it in my hand, I hear her breath in. Traced across it, in exactly the same position as mine, is the snake-lizard design. `Didn’t it freak you out – when did you get it?’

`When Max and I first made love, years ago – it just emerged! God he was really anxious for days! I told Maria and the others I had it tattooed in Santa Barbara – we were driving up the coast at the time!’

`Jesus. Liz, I will never touch another man in my life!’

`Let’s not make rash promises!’ she says. There is a silence now, heavy with sleep.

`Of course I can’t give him children’ I say, rather pointlessly.

Liz laughs a lot at this. She laughs as she falls asleep and as my mind wanders. On the very edge of sleep she turns into me and kisses my nose.

`You can be the third parent, Jamie, the mother and father!'

I smile. I am thinking of Max. I am also thinking that the antarian word for this is Ma-bap.
Last edited by Patroclus76 on Thu May 24, 2007 3:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Patroclus76 » Tue May 29, 2007 1:41 pm

here is the link to the parallel diary entry from Julian Evans for the dream sequence - but only for those who want to see it!

http://www.roswellfanatics.net/viewtopi ... c&start=30

the relevant entry is June 5th 2055 - the relevant part begins wth the lines `Eqbatana lies on the northern continent of the Antarian home world, a bleak unpopulated wilderness about 8000 km from the nearest major city.'


--------------


So have you ever had a dream that is so real, so tangible, so scarily tactile that it never occurs to you to wake up from it? That is until something really fucking weird happens! I have. I had one that night, the night Liz and I drew up our Extraordinary Charter for the Sharing and Collective Uses of Max’s Person.


(`I suppose you’ll want his butt more than anything else? I mean are you – active?’
`Top, Liz, the term is top, `active’ makes me sound like a volcano! I am extremely versatile! You don’t like his ass?’
`Good god – it’s fantastic!’ Liz rolls her eyes. And then adds `You want his feet?’
`Fuck yeah – I want to suck on his big toe when he gives me a blow job!’
`Is that physically possible?’
`Liz!’
`What about shaving rights? We have to take that in turn – I love shaving his body!’ Liz giggles. `Oh’ she adds, as an after thought, `I have the absolute right to watch you two make love!’
`Sure – on a reciprocal basis of course! What about Max’s rights?’ I ask vaguely.
`Oh he doesn’t have any!’ says Liz and we both laugh.)


Liz had nodded off while I was still musing on the reproductive rights of the Antarian Seeth. I quickly followed. Perhaps it was the alcohol, (the French have a lot to answer for) or perhaps it was my own nascent alien-ness that was reacting strongly with the wine and causing hallucinations! Anyway – one minute I was curled up with Liz, my hands around her waist, the next I was in a very dark and cold place, lying on my back on a hard stone table, shivering and asking for help!

The transition was so sudden that I jumped up, or at least tried to, but I was too exhausted to move. For a moment it was in total darkness, although I sensed vast distance and space about and above me – as if I was in the open or in some huge hall. Then, as my eyes adjusted to the dark, I became aware that quite close to me were three young men in armour, cloaked, each holding a strange spear or rod, tipped with a blue pennant. And then, behind them, I sensed an immense audience, hundreds, probably thousands of people, standing in quiet, regimented rows. I tried to speak but could not say anything. For an instant I had this terrible image that I was dead and laying in state, and that the people were filing by, paying me their last respects! I wanted to scream out that I was alive!

Again I tried to lean up, and as I struggled I now saw that standing right in front of me was a man, dressed in weather stained clothes, leaning close, trying to say something to me. Was I ill? Something wet was put to my lips. I am asked, in English, to drink. I try to focus my eyes in the gloom. A faint light is coming from the tip of the staffs held by the guards – I then realise that they are almost naked, and that what I took to be armour is the bony exoskeletal cuirasses of adolescent Seeth, tapering down over impressive, muscled torsos to narrow, tight waists. Yet the man in front of me is human. Again I try to speak or move. My panic subsides as I catch a closer look at his face – he looks like Max – is it Max? Is this one of his avatars?

`Max?’

The man seems to smile, some deep acknowledgement, and he brushes my face gently.

`My name is Julian – do you not remember me?’ I try to look at him. Is this a younger version of Grey?

`Julian?’ Was Grey ever this young? Have I gone back in time somehow? And then I realise – intuitively – as one often does in dreams – that this is Max’s human son, Julian Evans, Om’s twin.

`Where is your father!’ I gasp. He looks bewildered.

`My father? I had hoped that you would know?’ His eyes lift to one of the guards, a rather spectacular specimen, whose beautiful, chiselled face has been painted white and whose throat and forehead have been decorated with tattoos.

`He is delirious?’ Julian asks. The Seeth male runs his long elegant fingers around my mouth. It is such a familiar touch that I know immediately that he is Max.

Max is standing next to his son. Why does he not recognise him?

`No, he nears the threshold – he is prophetic now, through him speaks the Granolith.’ The Seeth speaks softly to Julian. I realise I am dying!

`Where is my father?’ asks Julian, a deep yearning in his voice. His eyes water with unspeakable longing.

I am confused. I have reached that stage where I know this is a dream – this has to be some stupid wacky dream and if I try hard enough I shall wake up!

`He is standing next to you!’ I whisper. Julian frowns.

`I am dreaming – you are a dream!’ I whisper. I reach up to touch Julian’s face. How like Max he looks! I stroke his cheek and as I do so I see something so terrifying, so shocking, I am snatched awake, screaming: I see that my arm is massively thin and translucent, that it is not human, that it is the blasted limb of some ancient creature: but more profoundly I see that buried in my arm is the small silver disc of Grey’s codex.

-----------

My scream shocks me as well. It sounds inhuman, not at all the sound I could make? Liz has gone somewhere. The long gallery like room is empty, the small ship lamp sends a faint cobweb of gloom across a corner. I am alone. With my heart thundering in my ears, I sit up and calm myself. Deep breathing. I think of trees. I am cold. I check the time, it is 4:45 am. Something draws me to the windows, a long line of bay windows, stoned faced in a mock Elizabethan style, with square heavy frames cold to the touch. I peer through. It looks oddly light outside, a grey dawn or a sort of luminous fog – hours before the February sun would normally be up.

Am I still dreaming? I slap my face – rather harder than intended – and then dress quickly, running along the corridor to the main stairwell still snaking a hand into my shirt sleeve. Once in the entrance hall I make for the doors – which are open. Outside, Michael and Kyle are sitting on the top of the steps leading down from the terrace to the drive. They are eating candies.

`Fucking hell!’ I exclaim. It is almost daylight, but the light is coming from a series of brilliant luminous wedges of silver high in the sky, one above the House, with the others radiating around it in a great circle. The ships have arrived! They’re fucking enormous! And they are beautiful. I have never seen anything so – so miraculous! For a while I am unable to speak. My eyes fill with tears.

`Hey, Jamie – how you feeling? Sleep ok?’ Michael asks this innocently as if the great sweep of ships above him is already perfectly normal. I can hear the sound of a helicopter clanking somewhere to my left. I become dimly aware of troops and soldiers far off in the woods to the left and right of the formal lawns.

`Hey, I think they’re going to try again!’ says Kyle, before I can go `fucking hell’ again! `Here, Michael, give me the binoculars!’ I am not prepared for what happens next.

The helicopter runs towards the House and as it draws parallel to the eastern wing it banks sharply and releases a series of missiles – they rush out in streaks of brilliant white and my blood runs cold – and then they hit something invisible, some transparent shield that implodes and absorbs them effortlessly. There is a soft red glow, a curious gobbling noise like a sheet of metal in the wind, and then silence. Bizarrely we hear the spent shells hitting the gravel.

`Stop wasting tax payers money!’ shouts Kyle, as if he is at a baseball game.

`What are you two doing – they – they - could have killed us all!’ I stammer – eventually – after slapping myself hard again.

`Jamie – go easy with the self harm! They’ve been trying for hours – the Antarian ships are shielding the House! It started as soon as they showed up!’

I look up again. We bask in the silver light of our ancestors. There is absolute silence, or do I hear the soft tinker and creak of something mechanical, like the sound of a tide in a crowded mariner? Suddenly a long elegant finger of light streams down from the city ships above and licks the drive. It hovers, thick as a searchlight, and flicks towards us.

`Just relax.’ says Kyle, shielding his eyes. `They’ve been sniffing about like this for a few hours!’

`Why don’t they come to meet us!’ I say with some effort, as if I am personally affronted. I run into the light, waving. The circle widens, I feel a soft buzz in my ear, a strange clatter of voices inside my head, and then it vanishes.

`All in good time!’ says Michael. He has his binoculars to his face and is watching a series of small dots well away to the left approaching now at speed.

`Oh fuck! Perhaps we ought to go inside?’ he says, as we all hear the sound of approaching jet aircraft. They pick up their stuff and run off inside all giggling and girlie. I, however, am outraged. I do outraged very well.

`You left me asleep!’ I am running back with them. We are like a bunch of excited school children. Isabel and Maria are making breakfast – there is a warm and inviting smell of bacon. I hear Liz laugh.

`Jesus – what’s wrong with you people – this is it! D day! This is the Beginning, it’s not a fucking picnic!’

`Jamie – chill - we have to wait! I think the Seeth are confused about the situation down here – they’re being incredibly cautious! They obviously got Max’s message – they will come when they’re ready – besides Max has troubles of his own!’

`He does?’ I ask as we canter through the great House as if we’re jogging. There is a massive flash of light outside and a dim rumble and then a screech of jets as they curl around the turrets and make off towards Wenatchee.

`Where’s Brandon? Has he hatched yet?’ I pant, walking swiftly through the darkness. `And where is Wilcox?'

`Brandon's back!’ Says Kyle. We are approaching the library – a place we have deliberately avoided since we arrived. `He is eating again – nuts. But he is stilla bit wobbly on his feet! He looks really cool though, he has a tail!' We jog on in silence. Distantly we hear the jets returning for another go.

`You think they’d be prepared for this – I mean everyone’s seen War of the Worlds, or Independence Day, alien ships always have shields!’ say Michael, as if he has really thought a lot about this.

`Yeah, go figure! They’ll probably try tunnelling underneath?’ suggests Kyle.

`Yeah?’ says Michael.

I roll my eyes. We turn a corner and the next bit of drama slips into view.

-----------

In front of the library is Max, standing with his hands embracing his arms, his hair plaited and to one side. He is wearing boots and a long coat. I almost have a multiple orgasm. Grey is next to him, in his dressing gown. Again I fear I am dreaming, that this is still a version of the dark nightmare in the cave.

`Shit I am still asleep!’ I say in obvious irritation! Max turns at my voice, his face warming into a smile. Grey is talking and using his hands a lot, gesticulating at the doors and then at the ceiling. As we approach, Max touches me.

`Hit me hard!’ I say.

`Not just yet’ he growls, frowning.

`Jamie’s acting weird’ says Michael, as if I am a pet dog or a small child. `What’s happening here?’

`Much the same.’ Says Max, sighing deeply and looking intently ahead.

`I’ve just had the weirdest dream and I am not entirely convinced this isn’t a dream either!’ I say. Max envelopes me in his arms and positions me in front of him so we are both facing the library doors.

`You’re not dreaming.’ He says, kissing the top of my head. Grey seems vaguely embarrassed by this display, or perhaps just put off from his line of thinking. After a pause, he resumes.

`We should wait until Wilcox can get here – he’s still – preoccupied?’ Grey looks at me hard: a coded message implying that Wilcox is still Max and can’t yet shape shift. I pull a sort of face and Grey looks suitably confused.

`You’ve seen what’s going on outside? The Seeth are here, in force!’ I say. Suddenly there is a loud boom and someone laughs. It is a horrible, cackle of a laugh, vindictive with great age.

`Yes, I’ve been out and waved at the ships! Hence the boots! But we’re a little preoccupied with what’s going on inside at the moment!’ Max holds my arms from behind. There is another boom and then the doors laugh at us again. The great doors are slightly luminous, and the statute of the young man in the central cartouche has gone – simply vanished. The cornice is empty. I am about to point this out when the doors laugh a third time. They are evidently darkly amused.

`I’ve gone mad!’ says Kyle, all matter of fact. `Outside is War of the Worlds, and inside is a laughing, insane pair of doors!’

`What are they laughing at?’ asks Kyle.

`Us, I think?’ suggests Grey.

`Do you want to try some of your Seeth voodoo stuff on then?’ Max asks me this, blowing on my ears. I glance around at him. I am not sure my command of the Antarian language is entirely voluntary.

`Sure? I’ll have a go.’ I sound uncertain, diffident.

`Speak from here,’ cautions Max as I go to walk forward. I think of the dream again and shudder. I screw up my courage and look at the elaborately decorative entrance. The doors are huge now. Something seems vaguely wrong with their dimensions and scale. And the panels seem to glow – or at least shimmer. How do you address a pair of doors?

`What did you say to Seeth Sia Ova when you saw her?’ prompts Michael, as if he can sense my dilemma.

`I can’t remember, something about I am the land?’ Fuck knows what that was about! I feel scared and slightly absurd. I clear my mind and think through words, shapes, places – in the end they come to me surprisingly easily.

`In the name of the High Seeth, I command you to speak!’ I say – but evidently in Antarian – because everyone looks suitable impressed. Grey produces a small tape recorder. Nothing happens. I repeat the challenge. Silence.

Then the doors shout in massive slabs of sound.

`Sia quan valen mia ka!’

We all jump. They sound indignant or pissed.

`What did it say?’ whispers Michael, although I can hardly hear him above the sound of blood rushing through my ears.

`None live who can command me! I think? Something like that, but very loud!'

`Tell them I am here, tell them I am their lawful king?’ Max puts his hands on my shoulders again and pats me reassuringly.

I utter a new string of sharp, guttural jabs at the doors. My grasp of the syntax is improving. I am sure my Antarian Seeth now sounds pithy, with a certain Antarian street cred.

Yet they laugh loudly at this apparent hubris.

`Who?’ the doors ask. And then again, heavy with sarcasm `Pour Qua!’

`Seeth Quaqendi Zan, et mia Emperia ta da!’ I spit this out loudly. There is a sudden, shocked silence. Through the vast House we hear more jets discharging missiles ineffectively against the Antarian shield. I think I hear gunshots now. Then the doors really do glow, a soft wedge of light comes from underneath, as if the library contains a vast sun. There is a hum. The line of light touches Max's boot and stops. Then it vanishes. Suddenly, on the bottom panel of one of the doors, a string of letters appear, glowing spidery writing in a brilliant but, for me at least, unreadable Antarian script.

`Careful!’ cautions Michael as I run towards it. Max and the others rush up behind me. `Always read the small print!’

`Thanks Michael! I can’t read it – sorry – I can’t read the script!’ I sound desperate.

`You’re doing just fine!’ says Max, reassuringly. `Concentrate, see if it makes sense. See if you can read it now!'

`No one can.’ says a voice behind us. `The language is from the Lizard Kings of old – not even the Sages of Eqbatana can read it!’

We turn around, and there, in the hallway, standing as if he has just appeared from nowhere, is Davies. He is looking slightly the worse for wear. He is covered in dirt and his coat is torn. He seems shaken, perhaps overawed at the majesty of the ships (although surely he has seen them before) or is he afraid that once again, his plan is not running to time. He is however, holding a strange weapon with a certain degree of grim determination and pointing it not at Max, his father, or at me,


but at Grey.
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Post by Patroclus76 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 3:43 pm

If this was a horror film, I mean if this had been fictional, then Davies would have been in some sharp suit with some fucking expensive watch on his wrist, or a white cat stitched on his arm. He’d have some wicked, wise ass comment ready like, `Good to see you again, Max, or should I say Father – (audience drops popcorn and someone goes `Good god, I knew it!’)

Or he might try a variation of one of those Captain Janeway lines in the fifth series of Voyager, when she was struggling with her lesbian feelings for Seven, and running into the Federation all over the Delta quadrant, `And they are always saying that the time-space continuum is so big?’

Unfortunately – since this was all shockingly real – Davies blinked, owl like, and looked frankly deranged. Seeing your father twenty or thirty years younger than yourself is bound to unhinge even the greatest criminal but Davies looked – well – positively tearful. Meanwhile we all stood in complete shocked amazement, having long assumed that if Davies arrived he would almost certainly manifest himself in the library and come out – not vice versa.

`Davies?’ said Max eventually, as if he wasn’t sure this was his real name. He starred at his son in disbelief.

`I prefer Henry actually, Henry Maitland – or you could call me Zan, if you want to be sentimental!’ His voice was odd, mid Atlantic in pronunciation. He was in his mid to late fifties, with receding grey-blonde hair and a high forehead. He had large, not unattractive grey blue eyes and as I looked at him, I recalled the disconcerting image of Tess, his mother. There was little of his father in him, something about the mouth and neck, something in the way he held himself, a memory of something.

Kyle looked bemused. Michael, scratching his eyebrow, looked at Davies and then spoke to Kyle. `This is Max’s son by Tess, the Future version, Davies of the Institute, the original editor of the codex?’ his voice was sarcastic.

`Henry I don’t understand what you are planning to achieve here – ‘ I said quickly, my mind racing like a rubrics cube over endless permutations and possibilities. Where was Liz? Was she safe? Where were Wilcox and Brandon, and where the fuck were the Antarians? Did they know who Davies was? How could they when – at this precise moment – Henry was about five running about some expensive lawn in some equally expensive apartment with a roof garden and twelve Mexican house servants, in upper east side Manhattan?

`Shut up!’ he said with extraordinary bitterness, keeping his eyes fixed on Max, although he was still pointing his device at Grey who, wisely, hadn’t moved.

`I have no idea who or what you are, but I am not going to be defeated again – I am tired of this, tired of going over and over the same drama – and you were not in the last three reruns of this little epic!’

I gulped down this personal rebuke.

`Fucking hell! You’ve been through this three times?’ stammered Michael.

`More than that – more than I can care to remember, and this stal ta mei was not in any of them! So keep out of my way!’

`This stal ta mei?' I queried.

`I said SHUT UP!'

`But you’ve come to kill me, haven’t you?’ asked Max quietly. `Not Grey, or Jamie, what will killing him achieve now? We know about the children, the Antarian Seeth are here and they can assist in the birth if you think that killing Grey will prevent –‘

`Silence!!’ Davies-Maitland shouted again, more desperate than last time, as if he was struggling to keep standing and as if his command of the English language was deteriorating.

`Spare me the Max-Zan treatment! Killing you was never on the top of my priorities, shocking as that may seem to such an egomaniac as yourself – I’ll kill you in good time, but I want to enjoy it father,and I want you to chose death!’

`But he tried to protect you!’ shouted Kyle, who seemed to finally grasp who Davies was now. `He sent you away so that no one would make a connection between you and the incidents in Roswell and the attack on the air force base that killed your mother!’

Davies barked a laugh. `How considerate – then why did it never occur to you that, once the excitement and drama of the Bone Hill Accords were over, you might come and reclaim me – acknowledge me? You had many years to come and tell me who you were? I had to find out many years later and on my own! The fact of the matter is, Max, you forgot me! Do you know what it is like to be excluded from your love? Erased?’

Max looked stung by the rebuke but said nothing. Maitland looked suitably triumphant. `Or is it rather that you couldn’t bear to remember Tess, and your one night of weakness under the stars? Was I the living emblem of your shame? Your betrayal to Liz?’ He smiled, and for a moment he looked so much like his mother than I felt physically shocked, as if somehow she was now in the great hallway with us.

Max gathered himself, looking directly at his son. `Zan – listen – you are here now, in this time. You are what, five? I can correct the time line? I can go and find you and ask you - ask you to forgive me?’

`That rather misses the point of my own cultivated bitterness! It’s a little late for me. I live a life of simple mediocrity –‘

`You become the fucking attorney general for god’s sake!’ I interrupt, `That’s not a bad career move! Your adoptive parents can’t have failed entirely in love!’

`Silence, you Antarian witch whore!’ He said slowly, like a real grade A whacko. Max shook his head at me to desist. I had been called many things in my time but never a witch whore – I then realised that Bandit Witch was the literal translation of stal ta mei! Why Davies thought I was a witch whore remained something of a mystery. There was a silence as we all struggled to come to terms with the situation, to calm Davies, to understand and control his anger.

`How did you eventually find out who your real father was by the way?' asked Kyle elegantly.

`None of your business, although of all of my father’s hangers on and chamchars, I always respected you, Kyle. You were kind to me.’

`I was?’

`Yes. Long ago, and without knowing who I was - ’ Outside there came the sound of another dim explosion and the House shook slightly. More jets screamed over us and I thought I heard the sound of heavy mortars.

`We are running out of time,’ said Maitland, with fake irony. He looked at Kyle again, his face distorted with emotion. Then he smiled faintly.

`Oh why not tell you. We’re all such a long way from home aren’t we! And some of us are not going back! Max left me a small memento on my forehead, a gift, or a scar? I was never sure which. When I eventually become involved in politics, in about twenty years from now, I meet an Antarian delegation, quite by accident, and a leading member of the Shalloth Resistance – he recognised the symbol on my forehead – I was then told who I was. Imagine my surprise!‘

`What else did Heleq Marva tell you?’ asked Michael, `or rather, what did she not tell you?’.

`It is of no consequence.’ Said Davies quietly, as if remembering the meeting. He looked behind him, and there was a haunted quality in his glance, as if in some senses he knew something was stalking him down. He then looked at Grey will great bitterness.

`Maitland, your mission has failed – Liz will give birth – Om will save the Seeth, Earth and Antar will be united – what have you left to gain from persisting in this? Khi’var is dead! So too is the future Antarian Ambassador, Marva – whatever she told you was a lie, the Shalloth needed you to play a part in a wider conspiracy, they USED you to gain access to Grey's work!‘ I tried to sound calm and even handed, like you are supposed to do when you are talking a man off the roof, except this guy held a strange gun like umbrella. `You were manipulated!’ I said, and then lapsed into silence.

`Was I? And Failed?’ Maitland then laughed, a horrible rather animal sound, a sound without joy. `You have no idea, do you? I know what the Shalloth wanted! The Antarian conspiracy is not just about the birth of Om, it is not just about the successful, albeit accidental conclusion to the long term Era of Experiments that rejuvenate the Seeth, it is much more than that, and I knew that I was merely an instrument of revenge, but I rather liked it, Caliban to my half brother’s Ariel – ‘ he smiled grimly and yet he looked immensely tired, and sad. Suddenly I felt pity for him. He looked at his father.

`Poor Max! Still so clueless?’ Maitland then looked at me bitterly. I was rather taken aback by such animosity from someone I had hardly met.

`You are not quite as clever as you think, James! So many questions as yet unanswered! The painting here, in Bone Hill House, in the upstairs chamber – the one that depicts the escape of my mother to Antar? Or does it? The writings on the door – the dynamics of the Granolith itself? And Grey?’ here he turned to Julian, who all the time had remained cautiously silent.

`What about Grey?’ asked Michael, as if Grey was not here.

`Grey knows the answers – but he doesn’t know the question yet!’ replied Maitland smugly, with all the contempt of a man who had been to the Future and returned. `Isn’t that right. Julian – and your soon to be best buddy, Seeth Sia Ova, has no idea either – although she is starting to look in the right places!’

I screwed up my nerve and stepped forward slightly. There comes a time in everyone's life when you have to bluff.

`You’re mistaken, Maitland! Chromosome 22, the DNA base sequences Grey identified in 1999 and then confirmed on the Phoenix children in 2003 – he knows what it means! He knows about the origins of the Seeth Antarians and why they returned to Earth?’ I blustered, forcing my mind forward, forcing it to engage with the tantalising evidence.

Maitland winced at me violently. He hesitated, looking at me with sheer hatred. Then he laughed again. `Good try, witch whore – a little more training and you’ll be a formidable concubine, but if you knew, why does poor hapless Grey still look clueless?’


`You under-estimate me, Maitland.’ Said Grey eventually. His voice sounded very clear and still, not at all excited or afraid. `Why do you think I stored all the original data from the Human Genome Project here, at Bone Hill House, and not in my papers bequeathed to the Institute when I retired? Why do you think I refused to share them, even with DeMarr? I was trying to hide the evidence.’

Maitland looked momentarily deflated, half angry, half sorry, and then he twisted his head around again, searching out the long dark corridors that stretched away behind him, like a cornered animal. He looked terrified. I pressed my advantage. Michael was looking alert. If I could somehow distract him, Michael might pounce or use his powers to disarm Davies!

`And we have the advantage of knowing from Wilcox the events that took place in 2055, before you escaped with your accomplices back to 1999 – we know that when you were initially arrested on the orders of the President, you broke into Bone Hill House to steal the very same papers – then, of course, they were in a museum!’ I added, to reassure Grey – who knew nothing of course – to imply, to give an impression of truth. Max, Michael and Kyle all looked bemused but purposeful, as if they too knew the answer.

`This is pathetic! You haven’t found it yet, have you!’ said Maitland eventually, with certainty. `You haven’t found the real codex – I knew it!’ and at that, without the slightest hesitation, he pressed the strange device. There was a loud snapping hiss and Grey was stabbed by a blue neon like dart.

Grey cried out in great pain and fell backwards, winded. He scrambled in a horrible, injured way, like an animal maimed, crawling away until he lay, crunched up against the doors. He looked utterly shocked, incredulous that this should happen. Max screamed `No!’ with such passion and outrage that my blood ran cold. Both he and Michael discharged a great slab of power at Maitland and threw him right back across the hall, limp like a rag doll. As he fell a long crystalline key rattled out of his coat and came to rest not far from where Michael was standing. Maitland cried out as he saw it.

`It’s the key to the Granolith!’ I shouted. Max ran to Grey as Michael ran and snatched the key up, kicking away the weapon that lay on the floor not far from it. And then, from behind us, something extraordinary happened.

From the hallway, there came a huge blinding light, bleeding into the darkness like a revelation. It looked like a wall of fire, brilliant, annihilating white. For a moment I thought that the Antarian shield had failed and that we had taken a direct hit, until, squinting hard into the glare, I saw, sharply defined against the numinous light, Brandon-Om - flying.

He was flying with massive out-stretched wings, his body lithe and muscled, with a tail swishing behind, and with a terrible roar he fell onto Maitland like an eagle, swooping down. The light filled up the House like a liquid, hitting and reflecting off the great library doors. For one moment, for the slightest moment, I thought I was actually going to be sick. I stood, swooning, and the nausea passed. The light filled everything.
Max, bewildered, shielded his face from the light with one hand, while holding onto Grey with the other. He recognised the shape of Brandon.

`Don’t kill him, Brandon! Please – ‘ Max shouted, but as the light faded and seemed to fold back into Om, it was clear that Maitland was already dead. Om had snapped him in two with the initial impact. A deep red pool of blood was forming across the cold flagstone tiles.

`He knew! He kept looking behind him – shit – something like this must have happened before, except this time, this time – ‘ I stammered.

`Fucking hell!’ whispered Michael, sinking to his knees. He looked in awe at Om, who, folding his wings back, seemed spectacularly alien. Kyle was open mouthed. Om nodded at us, as if to apologise for his appearance.

`Forgive me, father. In my anger I forgot my new found strength. And he had escaped so often before!’ he said simply.

`Father?’ said Max, his voice breaking. Grey was clutching his arm, a wordless agony on his face. Max looked down at him, his eyes shining.

`Brandon is your son as well’ Grey gasped. `He is the son that is to be born to Liz, he is one of the reasons the Antarians are here – he is their star child, and we have had a splendid time together, but alas I cannot remember!'

Max wiped tears from his eyes. He leaned over Grey and started to remove his shirt. `You are going to live Julian, you are going to live – I command it!‘

`No, Max! No – Maitland has infected him with a virus!’ I cried, looking at the weapon next to the dead man. It was the same umbrella like object I had seen in the Zoo. Brandon-Om, , blue-red, walked over to Max and kneeled next to him, as if in supplication.

`Jamie is right, Max. Maitland has laid a trap for you. Grey will die from a toxin in the dart, but the dart also contains a virus that is non-lethal to humans but will kill all hybrids and the Seeth. That is what he meant when he said he wanted your death to be your own choice.’

It will kill me? All the Seeth? Including you?’

`Yes. Once the virus enters into you it will become contagenous and deadly.’

Max looked at his son in open anguish. I felt my heart crushed within me.

`He cannot die! Brandon, I cannot let him die!’ he shouted. He looked in desperation at me, at Michael, and then at Grey.

`Max, your children are safe –‘ the Professor wheezed this, as if something was affecting his lungs. His breath came in horrible bubbling sounds. `I am going into some form of toxic shock, your children are safe – and Jamie – Jamie and DeMarr will find the truth, they will follow my lead, I think I understand now. I am not important! You and your son are!’

`You are to me!’ said Max with anger. `You are important to me and you are not going to die, not today, not like this!’ Still Max tore at the Professor’s shirt, his hand pressing on his chest. Om took his hands and tried to stop him.

`You cannot save me! If you do, you will die as well. Please Max’ Grey’s voice was a ghostly whisper. `You have to let me go.’

Max screamed, a wail of agony, welling up from his soul. And then, someone said from the hallway behind us.

`I can save him, Max. I turned around in shock to see Wilcox – or rather Max – for he was still evidently unable to change – step forward. Grey closed his eyes. Max, open mouthed, looked from his own image to me.

`Wilcox is you, Max – or rather – he is what you will become!’
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Post by Patroclus76 » Sun Jun 17, 2007 8:39 am

I will never know what Max felt, seeing himself like that, younger, more ethereal, standing forward in the cavernous hall. I have often thought about it since, over the long years. Seeing yourself, face-to-face, Max-to-Max! And I see it still, sometimes, the mirrored image of the man I love. I dream the scene, the taste of fear, re-glimpse the tapestry of faces: Om, magnificent and powerful, Michael, Max, Max-Wilcox, and Grey – already dead, crumpled in on himself, a look of pained surprise on his face. Kyle was crouching down, his face in his hands.

For a long time Max did not speak, but looked imploringly at me – as if somehow I could explain – but even as I struggled to come to terms with this madness, Max-Wilcox stepped over Grey and walked towards the library doors. They were now enormous slabs of darkness. As our drama had unfolded, they had changed in their own, subtle fashion. Their appearance was now frightening: featureless monoliths. They looked like the doorways to a tomb.

`You will not return, father.’ Said Om, with strange calmness.

`Then you must come with me –‘ he held out his hand to his son.

I went to say something. I went to stop him, to stop both of them.

`Jamie?’ said Max, his voice a scared whisper. But I was looking at Wilcox.

`I don’t understand. How can you save Grey now, and not become infected?’

Wilcox-Max smiled, half turning to me, mischievously. He winked at me as if none of this was of any consequence. He then looked at Michael.

`Michael – can you give me the key? The key to the Granolith?’ Wilcox then turned to himself – to Max – and searched his own face long and hard.

`There is so much I want to tell you Max, so many things – what to avoid, what to do differently, what to make sure you do again! Yet now, looking at you, at all of you, I realise it doesn’t matter – it will not make a difference – because it will work out fine! Ever have we been guided by luck or judgement, or‘ and he looked at me keenly, `Illuvatar – the path of our shared destiny!’

His voice sounded relieved, the sound of someone at the end of a long and difficult journey. Michael came forward and gave the key gently, his face down, as if it was a gift.

`Then this is farewell?’ Michael asked, quietly.

`For a while – but I am of course already here, and Om will be here soon – so do not be sad, Michael, or Jamie!’ he touched me softly. Tears were streaming down my face. At that he turned to Michael again. Max-Wilcox placed his hands possessively on Michael’s shoulders.

`Oh captain, my captain, there is one thing I need you to do for me! I shall return us to the moment when Davies appears behind you. You will be standing near to Kyle and to Grey, and as soon as you hear Davies retort to Jamie’s question about the script - that no one can read it, you must turn around and kick him violently in the balls! Do you think you can do that?’

Michael beamed a smile, but I could see he was emotional, that he was close to tears himself.

`You will of course, not remember, but you must do it nonetheless!’ Max-Wilcox added, cryptically. `Kyle might have to help as well?’ Kyle looked up and simply nodded.

`Are you going to return to your own time?’ I asked. Max-Wilcox smiled at me – I already knew the answer.

`Such a place no longer exists!’ Om stood along side his father. He bowed to me and smiled. `We shall meet again very soon – and I shall leave to Seeth Sia Ova the pleasure of explaining your tattoo, and your new found identity!’ At that they both walked towards the library doors. We all watched helplessly.

There came the soft tremble of a far off, deep vibration, as if a giant engine had been started, far down in the earth. Purple and blue light licked around the hallway as the doors swung silently inwards. They opened not to reveal the interior of the library – the great windows and the vast array of shelves, but a hideous, total darkness, the darkness of utter nothingness. Max-Wilcox waved at me, and then he held up the key, which shone with a sudden vivid, brilliant radiance. And then they were gone. I buried my face in my hands. When I lifted my head again, the doors had resumed their normal size and decorations – they looked almost normal – elaborate, ornate – and I also noticed that the figure of the young man had returned to the niche above the frame. He was no longer pointing down to the panels beneath him, he was sitting, smiling softly like a Buddha.

--------------

Suddenly, on the bottom panel of one of the doors, a string of letters appear, glowing spidery writing in a brilliant but, for me at least, unreadable Antarian script.

`Careful!’ cautions Michael as I run towards it. Max and the others rush up behind me. `Always read the small print!’ he shouts.

`Thanks, Michael! I can’t read it – sorry – I can’t read the script!’ I sound desperate.

`You’re doing just fine!’ says Max, reassuringly. `Concentrate, see if it makes sense. See if you can read it now!'

`No one can.’ says a voice behind us. `The language is from the Lizard Kings of old – not even the Sages of Eqbatana can read it!’

I recognise Davies’ voice immediately. It is slightly ironic, a little nasal, as if he is always on the brink of laughing at his own insights. Yet as I turn to look Michael does something truly fucking bizarre – he pirouettes around like a ballet dancer and kicks Davies straight in the balls with real force – god knows how he coordinates it – and as Davies drops to the floor in real agony, Max throws out a great blue-green shield of energy around all of us. Momentarily speechless, I see Davies try to recover a sort of umbrella like device from the floor until Kyle kicks it away and pins him down with a very painful arm lock. Davies looks dishevelled, exhausted. His face is a grimace of pain but he has clearly been taken by surprise.

`No, no – no!’ he screams as if something has gone hopelessly and unpredictably wrong. He screws his neck around to look behind him. He looks like some poor hunted animal, driven by hunger and desperation to finally confront his enemy. He hardly looks like a super villain! He looks rather pathetic. Max is shielding Grey, who is utterly bemused and startled. Max has the poor man by the scruff of his dressing gown as it he has just pulled him out of a river.

And then something inside my head makes a horrible snapping sound – literally – and I REMEMBER – the death of Grey, the sight of Max-Wilcox, the sight of Om – it rushes on me like a drug induced flashback. It literally takes my breath away.

`Shit! Max! Vaporise it – quickly!’ I stab a finger in the direction of the strange device lying on the floor. Max, without questioning me, hurls a white-hot ball of light towards it, through the shield wall.

`It contains a virus – ‘ I stammer, my head reeling from the sense of déjà vu. The device vanishes. I then look at Davies.

`We know everything –‘ I say slowly, coming to my senses. Davies is lying underneath Kyle. Again, looking at him, I see his mother in his features, the blue-grey eyes, the fading hair. He had been blonde, like her. `And we have found the real codex. We know about the prophecy and it is fulfilled!’ I say this carefully, enjoying my moment. Max and Michael look at me, questioning, their faces distorted by the rippling shield of light.

Yet Davies looks utterly crushed. His face is a mask of hatred,

`It is not possible – you witch whore – how can you be here!’ he snarls this out, his eyes darting behind him again. How many times, and in what guises, had Davies seen death coming up behind him? Evidently Davies can remember each re-run of this scene. How often, and with how many variations, had he been forced to relive it? `How can you know?’ he whispers. I smile in my great sadness, knowing that Om will not come this time.

`How!’ he hisses, snake like.

As Davies says this, three pillars of light suddenly cascade down from the high vaulted ceiling of the hallway. As they touch the ground, a faint outline of a Seeth appears in each one – translucent, scarcely visible beneath the shimmering gossamer of light. In the one nearest to me, I see the form and outline of Seeth Sia Ova. At first she is a mere apparition, the faintest trace, and then, slowly, her outline solidifies. Max drops his shield. It folds into him, and we stand, blinking. Myself, Max, Kyle, Michael and Julian Grey. We have come to it at last.

We are in a curiously intimate composition, as if we are posing for a photograph, an album cover, a poster. My relief is immense. I have often thought of this moment. I have often thought of what I would say. I feel inclined to shout `where the fuck have you been!’ but all I can do is sink to my knees, utterly exhausted.

`Thank god you are here!’ I say.

Seeth Sia Ova looks at me and nods in silent acknowledgement. Her eyes are expressionless yet I feel her recognise me. She then looks at Grey and nods as well. She then turns to Max. And she then says something that she definitely did NOT say in Grey’s codex.

`Hail Zan IV of the Antarian Imperium! The war in your empire is over, and we have travelled far to restore you to the throne of your forefathers, to restore the Seeth genome, and to reunify Earth and Antar!’

At that, the three shadowy forms sank to their knees in salutation.

Michael rolls his eyes.
--------------------------------------------

(Complete Extract from Grey’s codex, from the Roswellian Codex dated 17th April 2006 – with the sequestered sections restored. Submitted by Jamie to the Council on February 18th 2006 in support of his theory concerning the Prophecy).


This morning I realised that I had not left the Bone Hill House estate since my visit to The Companion Bookshop in Wenatchee. That was in another time, another world, BR, Before Roswell, (or is that BM, Before Max?). The Parkers and Philip Evans are leaving today. I like the Parkers, especially Nancy, a brave determined woman, handsome with an intelligent, quick look about her. Diane Evans is a little vacuous at times, and her husband I find odd, cold even, or is he just overwhelmed? (or am I just jealous, petulant that there are others older than Max who have known him longer and are slightly deeper in the mystery than I!). Since speaking with S’eeth Sia Ova I struggle against this possessive protectiveness. Isabel and her mother had a curious, animated but slightly indirect argument by the swimming pool. I could not help overhearing since I was in the lab trying to go through the information and data that S’eeth Sia Ova had given me the other day. The argument was about Jessie.

I returned to my lab and scrutinised Max’s strange DNA again. I felt distracted; preoccupied. 44 chromosomes and two sets of sex chromosomes! Even with the revelation that he had died, that he had become someone else – Clayton Wheeler – it seemed strange to explain. Why a `spare pair’ of genetic codes, for gods sake! Why did Max contain a wholly redundant phenotype? I isolated my old friend, chromosome 22. With the technological assistance of the S'eeth, I could see on a small LCD screen the vast spiral structures of the chromosome and then, the individual genes – darkened – color coded by the computer. Not for the first time did I enjoy the sheer joy of Antarian hardware! It had been on examining chromosome 22 that I had first identified the tell tale signs of alien material in the children saved by Max. How long ago that seemed!

I examined the chromosome again – half aware that Isabel was sobbing below as her mother pleaded with her. Their voices were carried upwards by the quadrant like enclosure of the gardens under the House, but I could not catch the words. I forced myself to concentrate. Max’s first chromosome 22 was perfectly normal, with no extraneous alien materials at all. On Max’s additional Chromosome 22 all the geneic integers were alien. Every one! I looked closer. I lifted my head up from the screen and frowned. Ought I to call Seeth Sia Ova? Or had she already found this? Had she, in that typical way of hers, asked me to `look over' the S'eeth findings for me to corroborate her results?

The room felt hot and rather airless. I recalibrated the screen and increased the magnification. There was no doubt about it. Max’s two chromosome 22s was entirely different from his other, one human, and the other utterly – inhuman! Like the two children Liz was carrying? I quickly looked at chromosomes 21 through to 12. They all showed the same changes. Max contained two different phenotypes – two fundamentally different ways of appearing! I returned to `alien' chromosome 22 and magnified a set of base sequences at random.

At the highest magnification possible, the Antarian equipment showed the molecular structure of the individual amino acid! It also showed something else. Each base sequence had been `tagged’ with a symbol! I lifted my head away and rubbed my eyes. My heart was surging with excitement. I returned to stare – the symbols were distinct and quite readable, individual characters from an alien cuniform language. Each base had one – right on through the length of the gene and through the chromosome itself – and they evidently composed a massive text throughout the genome!

I sat back, my neck aching from the effort. In an instant I realised that Max had within him, within each cell of his body, a codex – literally a coded and edited `text’ insinuated at the molecular level! What better way to ensure the transmission of information than to code the genes to reproduce a text – a book – a narrative – over and over again – as if each cell in Max was a microchip, a strip of magnetic tape, or a page of paper, crammed with information - a story – but a story of what? And what did it say? How could it mean anything?

And then came again another intuitive moment: the `normal’ chromosome was the cipher! If I aligned the two Chromosome 22s next to each other, I could read from the established initials of the known base sequences – the codons on the `normal' 22 – a translation of what the tagged symbols meant on the alien one! I went to stand. As I turned I saw a man watching me at the end of my lab. I had not seen him before.
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Post by Patroclus76 » Tue Jun 26, 2007 4:21 pm

`Hail Zan IV of the Antarian Imperium! The war in your empire is over, and we have travelled far to restore you to the throne of your forefathers, to restore the Seeth genome, and to reunify Earth and Antar!’

There is a deep, ominous silence. Max looks entirely taken aback by this request in part because it is thought at him, not spoken. Eventually I become conscious that everyone is looking at me.

`Er, haven’t you decided that he is going to abdicate? I mean – ‘ I look at Michael, my co-time conspirator, trying to recall Grey's codex. `haven’t you decided to abolish the monarchy?’ The Seeth stare at me as if I have just made a (bad) joke or farted in public.

Eventually Ova says cautiously,`We have debated this issue at length – but the provisional government has decided that the Monarchy must remain, as has been prophesised. And indeed you are proof that we are right.’

They remain looking at me with black, sightless eyes.

`Me?’ I ask, genuinely bewildered. Michael raises his eyebrows again and then says

`Ah, so we come back to the prophecy again!’ he shrugs, but as he does so Max steps forward. People are walking up the hallways behind. I turn to see Isabel, Liz and Maria approaching. Their faces register the extraordinary sight of three ghostly alien apparitions flickering around Max. Max then says, with particular emphasis

`I don’t want to be King, I renounced the throne many years ago.’ He looks at me, gesturing me forward. He calls softly to his wife. Liz walks forward.

`I understand why you are here.’ He looks at Seeth Sia Ova. `Jamie has told me the nature of the crisis that has overcome my planet, and the need to rejuvenate the Seeth. My wife bears two children, one is the restored Seeth, the other is human. You may also know that my son by Tess, called Zan or Davies, or indeed Henry, is here as well.’ he points to Maitland, who is still passively squashed underneath Kyle. `He is from the future, and is part of a conspiracy to destroy the Seeth.’

There is another, gaunt silence. Despite the outward stillness, I can sense that Seeth Sia Ova is numbed by these revelations. Not just surprised, but also deeply moved, as if after an infinity of waiting, the moment of redemption has arrived, suddenly, unlooked for. They bow their heads, all three. Then Seeth Sia Ova looks at me.

`Lord Zan, we know of Jamie. He is Ta Mei, or Chargil – the Seer from the Threshold of the Granolith, the guardian of the sacred text. He has guided you – and us – to this moment. It was foretold that he would walk with Zan toward the Unknown Region before the Peace, branded by his king.’ They bow again, I am beginning to feel a bit weird about all this. As if from nowhere, I remember Om saying to me in the library, long ago - `it is as if the doors recognise Jamie!’ I feel suddenly frightened.

Seeth Sia Ova is speaking to me again.

`You must reveal to Zan the rest of the prophecy on the codex – it is time. We have brokered a truce with the governments of Earth, and they have been summoned to this place in three days hence to sign the Bone Hill Protocols that will reunify Earth with Antar.’

I have no immediate idea what Seeth Sia Ova is asking of me.

`You’ve seen the codex?’ I ask, but I am thinking which one, and which version? Then suddenly I know.

`Was it you that took Grey’s codex from me, only to return it last night?’

`Yes. And on reading it we finally found the evidence we needed to locate the Book of Ea, the original account of the exodus of our race from Ea – Earth – and the foretelling of our return. Long has it been lost to us, and long sought by both the Seeth and their enemies.’ Ova nods appreciatively at Grey.

Max and Michael are watching me, Max frowning. It’s a bit like being in a fucking tennis match. One ball this way, lobbed back. Heads moving, to Seeth Sia Ova, then back to me.

I can sense Max looking intently at me. Finally he speaks softly.

`Jamie? What is this book? Why have you never mentioned it to me before?’ there is a trace of a rebuke in his voice. It stings me.

`I have only just realised where it is Max – literally tonight - it’s you.’ I shrug.

Davies moans some rebuke, soon silenced by a snarl from Kyle. Liz embraces Max protectively.

`I don’t understand –‘ she says. I take a deep breath.

`It’s written into every cell of Max’s body. Grey discovered – will discover – that you have within you an additional set of chromosomes, double the normal amount. You have within you the genes of Clayton Wheeler, but they are not human – indeed Clayton Wheeler was probably not human – but that’s another story. This genetic anomaly is what enables Liz to become pregnant with two different species, to produce Om, and his brother, the human child Julian. But there is something else coded into the additional chromosomes: a story. Somehow, in some bewilderingly fantastic way, someone has coded into the base sequences a textual account of the Exodus that has been preserved by your alien DNA not just passing on the physical characteristics of the Seeth, but the history of their race.’

`Exodus?’ whispers Max. He doesn’t want any further revelations. I can see this through his body language. I am about to lay an enormous burden on him for ever.

`The Seeth originated from Earth, Max – they might well have evolved from warm blooded dinosaurs. Seeth means thunder dragon, and the restored phenotype of the Seeth, as we shall see with Om, is humanoid but also retains – restores – reptilian like features – beautiful features – ‘

`Like the tail!’ gasps Liz, `Oh my god! And the skeletal features on the neck and shoulders!’

`Wait a minute’ says Kyle, shifting to ease Davies a little. `You’re saying that Max is a fucking T-Rex or something!’

`Well, not exactly. They are late Cretaceous, possibly they evolved from raptors.’ I cringe slightly, conscious of all this attention. Max is looking at the floor, almost at his feet, as if he might be looking for scales or claws.

`You escaped the Cretaceous Extinction!’ says Liz with obvious excitement – `that’s why you went to Antar!’

Ova nods at this. `Yes. Although we have only just discovered the proof of this. Grey was well ahead of us, although he was not sure of what he found, he recognised a link between the alien children and normal human DNA – that started him on the track of Max, and the additional chromosomes. And because he recorded it in his diary, and because that diary as a codex found it’s way here – from the future - we have been able to follow!’

`I discover this?’ says Grey and then, in a scared whisper. `Chromosome 22!’

Seeth Sia Ova nods again.

`Yes, hathman Grey. You first identified the physiology of Yantra Parker’s children, and then you later discover that the second set of Max’s chromosomes were tagged with a script, because you could not resist looking at "22" again. You then realise that the scripts can be translated by reading the signs off the known base pairings on the human DNA using their conventional names in English, such as (T) Thiamine, (G) Guanine etc, like a code book. A bit like the Rosetta stone, I believe?’

`My god – I’m a genius!’ says Grey unexpectedly.

It brings a brief , wintry smile to Max’s face.

`And you discovered this when you read the full unedited version of Grey’s codex. From the future?’ I ask this of Seeth directly. I am astounded. The key to the codex lay in another codex, Grey’s diaries, another story, one which Khi’var had tried to prevent being read. It was simply astounding!

`You've translated it?' asks Kyle.

`Yes.' Seeth Sia Ova moves to the edge of the trembling beam of light. `We took a sample of Max's semen and accessed the genetic codes and translated them. We reproduced the text of Ea, in a more conventional form!'

Ova spreads her thin, gaunt hands in an expansive gesture and produces a small thick book.

`How did you get hold of semen?' says Max.

`We discovered a well preserved sample in an ice tray in Jamies apartment. It would appear that he too was onto the possible location of the text!'

I wince visibly. Max stares at me as if I have betrayed him. Kyle coughs loudly.

`So what of Khi'var, the conspiracy, and the attack on the van?'

Ova looks sort of wistful. I notice the two Seeth behind her shimmering and rippling. They seem familiar somehow.

`As the war came to an end, we knew of a conspiracy of sorts. We knew that Khi’var had discovered Bone Hill House before Max, that he was obsessed with Earth, and I knew that somehow the Granolith was deeply involved in this – as it had been with the original Exodus. We analysed multiple temporal incursions around the site of Bone Hill House, but it made no immediate sense. The Granolith is our most sacred artefact, having appeared to save us before, before the stone fell from heaven. We discovered some year ago – through Nicholas – that the Granolith had appeared on Earth again, but we did not understand the meaning of this. As it became clear to us that Yantra Parker would give birth to the child that we needed to save our race, it became obvious that our discovery of Earth was no coincidence – and that our destiny was linked to it.’

`But isn’t the Granolith at Roswell, or wasn’t it at Roswell – didn’t Tess escape in it?’ asks Kyle. Maria and Isabel are silent, watchful.

`There is only one. The granolith at Roswell was a manifestation of the one here, and of the one concealed somewhere on Antar – ‘ says Seeth Sia Ova with a chill gravity.

`You do not know where it is yet? Do you?’ I ask. My mind goes forward to the painting, Tess’ departure to Antar.

`No – we did not find it as the ships departed for Earth.’

`It is in Eqbatana, in the private chambers of the Head Priest, behind the doors that lead to the Hall of the Kings.’ I say meekly. `It is the portal through which Davies and Khi’var came to Earth. It comes through a painting in the House, a painting of the departure of Tess from Earth. If the conpiracy had succeeded the picture would have changed.’

`Then the prophecy is true.’ Says Seeth Sia Ova softly.

We lapse into a profound silence, until Max shouts with a certain grim determination.

`I am not going to be king! It’s – it’s impossible! And reunifying Earth with Antar? It’s all mad – it just won’t work – I understand about Om, and Liz, and I am prepared to allow Om to restore the Seeth – but that’s all!’

He embraces Liz, hiding his face in her hair. There is a difficult awkward moment. My stomach tightens.

`What’s in this for Earth?’ asks Michael, cunningly, catching my eye before he squares up to Seeth Sia Ova. He is a clever bastard. I know this tone. This is one of Michael’s pointless questions to distract Max, and allow me to come up with some sort of counter strategy. Liz spots it as well. Max might well have done had he not been so distraught.

Grey answers instead of Seeth Sia Ova, his voice racing forward in excitement.

`A great deal, I would imagine. Earth is on the brink of destruction, global warming, biological vulnerability to mass infection, with warring nations wedded to redundant political structures - incapable of solving novel and difficult problems – you have the technology to save us, we have the genes? ’

Seeth Sia Ova agrees. `Yes – but it is worse than that. The hour is later than you think. You are on the brink of a new Extinction, the Holocene Extinction – it is close now. We come to the threshold just in time, and again the Granolith returns. What Zan will give to the Seeth and to Antar, he will give to Earth as well. The Seer has witnessed it, the falling angel, the hands out stretched, the doors too show the signs – Earth is Antar, and Antar is Earth. Yantra Parker gives birth to two children, two different races, one mother, one father, one destiny. We are hinged together like the great doors’

I feel a lump in my throat.

Still Max clings to Liz, like a drowning man clings to a life raft.

`No, no – it cannot be! Michael, Isabel, Jamie!’ he swings around at me, wide eyed. `Tell them I refuse!’

Ova pushes forward, patiently. `Lord Zan, the proofs are here around you. Would you refuse this?’ He offers the book to Max. Max tears himself away from Liz and walks slowly off into the great House. He stops and turns back, his voice breaking.

`Yes! I would refuse! I want to be human, I want a normal life, I want to live with my wife here, on Earth!’

`I beseech you, consider your destiny?’ asks Seeth again. Max shoves his hands into his pockets of his coat and storms away.

`They are going to use you!' shouts Davies, `They just want the child and your name and then they will throw you away! They are using you to invade and dominate Earth!'

`Shut the fuck up!' snaps Kyle and sticks his finger in Davies' ear.

Liz looks at us all, at me. I recall our conversation. Our pact. She shrugs and walks after him. `Max, Max wait a minute!’

Michael, seemingly unmoved by this major hitch, walks over to Kyle. `What do you want us to do with Davies?’ he asks, looking at the Seeth.

`We shall take him to discuss his part in this – after which he can remain here or return to Antar.’ Seeth Sia Ova looks distracted though. The withered Seeth comes up close to me. There is a strange dry smell, like sand. She presses the book into my hand, It is heavy and compact. I also notice that there is a sort of book mark at the end, sticking out close to the spine.

`Jamie you must go after him, as must you, Lord Rath. It will not be easy. But in the end, he must come to us, and the choice must be his and his alone!’

`And if he doesn’t?’ I ask. Seeth Sia Ova cannot smile. But there is a sort of color in her mind that denotes human irony. I smile, slightly, and the smile grows as I realise that the two Seeth standing behind her, shimmering in their beams of ethereal light, are none other than Wilcox and Brandon. Tears start in my eyes.

`Come on Michael, we have promises to keep –‘
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Post by Patroclus76 » Wed Jul 04, 2007 3:55 am

Me Ka Termi: A Delaration of Independence.

--------------------------------



Michael and I stalked Liz, who stalked Max, all through the vast cold mausoleum of Bone Hill House with its marbled expanse of halls and high vaulted ceilings, its empty stairwells and its many deserted reception rooms. For a brief moment I felt that I was back in a curiously transformed version of West Roswell High, staking out Max’s territory, as if I had in the final moments of this adventure, stumbled back on its beginning, the smell and textures of my first day at school, the sight of Max in the empty gym, the air thick with dust and sunlight. Several times Liz looked back, like Lot’s wife, to check we were still there, perhaps she sensed it too? God, if I had known then what I know now!

`Where the fuck is he going?’ whispered Michael loudly. `I hope he isn’t going to look at the painting?’

`No, that’s on the other side of the house. I think he’s making for the roof.’

`Fantastic!’ Michael stifled a yawn. We were now somewhere on the fifth or sixth floors, and the ceilings were appreciably lower. The elaborate stone work and baroque excess of the House was giving way to wood and plain plaster, badly marked and damaged by damp. There was an overwhelming smell of decay and neglect, a sense that no one had been in these places for years. We stalked on in silence.

After a while we came to a low gallery looking eastward, over the drive and lawns, with high sash windows that opened onto a balcony. From here, a rusted metal ladder led up into a forest of chimneys and stone buttresses that linked the balcony to the many towers and stone pennants of the eastern façade, the main frontage, of Bone Hill House. Ostentatious and vast, the self conscious grandeur and scale of the architecture was overwhelming. It was like glimpsing a city in the clouds.

`I’m not good at heights’ I said weakly as Michael squirreled up the ladder without a moments thought.

`Jamie, for fuck sake, come on!’ he waved his hand at me. I scowled ineffectively. I closed my eyes and climbed up slowly. Worryingly I felt the ladder move in the wall brackets. I smelt cold sharp rust on my hands, like blood. At the top of the ladder, on a small platform hidden by a false turret, Liz was standing, sheltering from the wind. I embraced her quickly. She had been sobbing. Her face was wet and sharply drawn with pain.

`What’s up? Did you speak with him?’ asked Michael softly but directly. He kissed her forehead affectionately.

`He won’t speak with me, Michael. He just keeps walking – walking away! ‘ her voice was barely audible. There was a sense of panic in it.

`Well, he can’t get very far now.’ I said. I drew a sharp breath and climbed over the turret. When I turned to look however I gasped.


Above us, high in a far-flung arch of light, the great Antarian ships floated as silently as airships. There were now about fifty of them, their vast V shapes covered in millions of tiny lights, except where, here and there, low clouds obscured and smudged their outlines, making them appear ghostly and apparitional. Despite the thick weather, their light was enough to give the night a sort of silvery illumination that enabled me to see the sheer size and scale of Bone Hill House’s roof scape, a wilderness of flagstones and secret, hidden yards. Strange ruinous terraces seemed to denote some long lost function, and in one corner of a tower, a small set of benches lay rotten and mangled, with just the metal work showing where the vanished wooden planks had once been fixed.

`Jesus Christ!’ I said.

`What is it?’ Michael’s voice was close, in my ear, and I felt him take me by the waist. I didn’t have to reply. I heard him say, `Holy crap!’ Liz joined us as I was scanning for a sight of Max. Michael, sensibly, still had his binoculars. After a while he said

`There he is! He’s sitting on a gargoyle or something!‘

`What, on the edge!’ Liz snatched the binoculars. Less distinctly, I could nonetheless see that Max was sitting on a stone dragon, but on an inner wall over a flooded part of the roof. He looked like he was on a small island. He seemed quite tranquil. The pool of water reflected the sky almost perfectly, the ships, the winking lights. It was as if Max sat amid a hole in space, a great drop into nothing.

`You don’t think he’s going to do something spectacularly stupid do you?’ I asked. The momentary pause before my friends answered `No!’ gave me little real assurance. The look on Liz’s face said that she was no longer sure what he would do.

`So what now?’ asked Michael, eventually. It was about 4 am. It was bitterly cold and damp, with an eastern wind fresh in our backs, moaning about the stone work. It tasted of snow.

`He’ll get bored and hungry and come in after a while’ said Michael without any conviction. He was scanning about the roof top as if he was already bored. We dimly heard the sound of helicopters again, below us, as if they were landing on the lawns in relays.

`He can out sulk us all, we all know that.’ I said, with grim accuracy. I looked at Liz.

`I really didn’t know about the book, about who I was, until today, until about an hour ago, you have to believe me!’

`Jamie, I believe you! And I think Max does as well? That’s not what all this is about. This is about him. Max has escaped one destiny to find himself in a bigger one! He hates all this attention! He hates the idea of power, and of leadership! The only person he hates at the moment is himself.’ Liz sighed deeply. `And I cannot reach him at the moment.’

`I’ll go to him.’ Said Michael gently, almost to himself. `He thought he’d escaped, escaped Antar, the Feds, the sheer horror of the alien abyss. Now he finds it here at the end, waiting for him, bigger than ever.’ Michael laughed grimly.

`How could it have changed? I mean how could the original end of Grey’s codex be so different?’ I asked but Michael had walked forward over a wilderness of tiles and concrete conduits. Had I changed it somehow?

Max was sitting with his knees drawn up into his chest, with his arms embracing his legs, as if he was trying to make himself small and insignificant. He seemed precariously balanced. His long black hair curled and snaked about him, and the wind snatched and billowed his coat, so he looked animated, like an emblem on a flag. The curiously ambient light from the ships made the scene so unreal, silvering his face, exaggerating the black contrasts around him. For one awful moment I thought he looked as if he was dead, that he was in some strange way already in Hades, and that Michael was wading out to reach him. Perhaps, in his own mind, he was dead already!

`It’s not your fault’ whispered Liz, touching my cheek.

`Who is he?’ I asked. I feared I now knew the answer. Tears were streaming down my face. I took the Book of Ea out from my back pocket and looked at it. Max had carried this text within him from birth, and how it had got there was a story of such unimaginable mystery that I could only begin to understand it. I kissed the book and then, hesitantly, stuffed it back in again.

------------------

Michael stayed with him until dawn. They shouted at each other for a long time. Michael was resplendent, nuanced, knowing his King and how far to push, when to yield. At that moment I realised that I loved Michael too, deeply and profoundly. Finally they talked a little, but then mostly sat side by side in silence, intimately balanced on the dragon’s head, like children who have clambered up a monument and cannot get down, or like people sit on a beach, eyes to the sea. At one stage I thought I saw Max kiss him, but it was hard to make out clearly.

It snowed for a while, and then the clouds lifted and the sun came up, and the great ships glittered and sparked about us, silently watching. I might have slept for a while, I couldn’t be sure. At one stage I had a dream that I was running after Max through a house picking up his clothes. He was always just ahead of me, and out of sight. Throughout Liz stood resolute, waiting to go to her husband. I thought it unwise in her condition to risk getting a cold.

At about ten o’clock that first morning, Grey appeared in a white gabardine coat, carrying a bag of food and a thermos flask. He seemed untroubled by the height, and obviously knew his own roof scape rather well. He had even brought a blanket.

`You must have something to eat Liz, Jamie, and get Michael to eat as well? Here’s some strong coffee, DeMarr made it for you!’ he smiled coyly, as if he was trespassing on a friendship. The smell of coffee alone revived me. As I looked up at the Professor, I had a disconcerting recall of him dying in Max’s arms.

`What?’ he asked, sensing my déjà vu.

`Nothing! What’s going on downstairs?’

`About ten dozen tents have sprung up about the grounds, Wilcox would be outraged !’ Grey paused for a moment. Liz started eating a fresh warm croissant as Grey busied himself unpacking our picnic. `We’re all over the TV and radio and internet, they’ve even got archive pictures of you all and me! Lots of governments are being assembled, the Seeth have been very efficient!’

`Yeah?’

`There is a photo of me from my Boston days, pictures of Max from Roswell! President Bush is going to stay in my main guest rooms!’

`Oh dear!’ smiled Liz.

`I know!’ Grey chuckled. He had a rather handsome, friendly face when he laughed. And he looked much younger than when I had first met him. Watching him fuss made me feel protective, affection to him.

`Thank god my wife is dead!' he went on. `I never voted for him, you understand, but there it is, our leader right or wrong!’ Grey’s eyes wandered to Max. `How is he?’ his voice could not conceal a tone of tenderness.

`I have no idea.’ Said Liz flatly. `He is somewhere far away, among his dead.’


Michael was walking back towards us. He looked exhausted, as if he had physically fought Max. I refilled the flask cup with coffee and handed it to him, he leaned down against me and as he drank I put my arm around him and kissed his head. He smelled of cold grey sky. I then repeated Grey’s question: `How is he?’

`I’m not sure.’ answered Michael after a while, before tearing into some food. `He called me a conspiring, disloyal, ungrateful bastard – and when that was out of the way, we just talked about Roswell, about school, about Hank, the old days! Weird! He wants to say no, he wants to renounce this, but he knows deep within himself that he can’t!’ Michael rubbed his eyes. `God, I am dog tired!’

`I’ll go to him,’ Liz picked up some food and I gave her the flask. We watched her walk over towards the silvery, still water and wade out to Max’s island. The lake was quite shallow. After sitting in silence, watchful, Grey left to get more supplies. He asked us if it wasn’t worth coming inside. We declined. Somehow we felt drawn to Max in his moment of crisis.


Michael and I were sitting very close together, with his arms around me. I leaned my head back on his chest.

`You know, I always thought the Shalloth built the Granolith, I didn’t realise they found it?’ I mused, eventually. Michael’s kissed the top
of my head absent mindedly. There was silence, but just when I thought he had gone to sleep he said.

`The granolith is about destiny, isn’t it? It is illuvatar, perhaps it’s even about God!’ he half laughed. `Fuck, do you think Max is God?


`I don't know - I think Jonathan knew though. Perhaps that is what Jonathan was trying to tell me? When he and Max first met, I sensed Jonathan’s revelation - ’

I smiled, and then I recalled the image of Brandon falling between Earth and Antar, and the smile froze on my face.

`Fuck knows’ said Michael, his voice heavy with sleep. `At the very least he is an angel! Or perhaps God just wants him! He has been chosen and Max just wants to say `no fucking way!'

-------------------

That day, and part of the next, was a blur to me. It snowed, the sun shone, sometimes it rained. Liz came back about noon and went inside for a while to sleep. She returned and stayed sitting with Max until dusk. Sometimes they were apart, sometimes in a heavy embrace. At one stage I saw him pull down her skirt and kiss her stomach. We heard Liz’s laugh high and brittle on the wind. Twice Liz returned with cold, untouched food. Once or twice Max sat on his own, his strange vigil unbroken. I could not face going to speak with him, although our separation made me mad with pain. Why did I hesitate? Was I unsure of his love? Was I unsure of mine? Did I feel that I had betrayed him? That I had, unwittingly, lead him into a trap?

On noon of the second day, Grey appeared with more supplies and more news. The House was full of presidential aids and Europeans. `I've met a very nice young woman called Quereshe - Quiareshi - an intern for one of the Senators here!' Grey had noted before then going on to describe that the Antarians were getting anxious. Isabel, Kyle and Maria were doing their best to assist them in setting up the Earth summit, but Seeth Sia Ova seemed distracted and was worried about Liz’s health. There was a rumour that everyone’s parents were coming as well! The Seeth had sought guarantees.

The second night was dark and cloudy, and at some stage Max climbed off his dragons head and wandered off westwards, towards the back of the house. We scurried after him, disorientated with cold. He stopped for a while to sing loudly, and then he sat down. Disconcertingly he howled from time to time.

We found nearby shelter in a curious bay window at the base of a turret. The window led into a single, square room, half filled with old masonry. Since there was no stairwell, the only way into the room was via the roof.

`Weird design, it must have been built to store things needed to maintain the chimneys?.’ Liz mused. We settled down. There were signs of previous activity. A candle stick, a note book, old sacks. I wondered if Wilcox had been here. Perhaps he had not been repairing the roof on those wet days recorded by Grey in his old codex, but staking out the roof? Or was he remember this?

Michael lit a fire with a conservative use of his powers.

`Don’t set the House a light!’ I half joked. I fell asleep until I was awoken by Max, screaming. I bolted out into the darkness, only to collide with Michael, who was about to wake me.

`What the fuck’s happened!’ my heart was shoved up into my chest with panic. We clambered out into the total blackness, skuffing our heads. Eventually, we could see Max, half naked now, despite the cold, shouting and screaming at the ships, waving his shirt about like a cast away. There was something strange about his skin, as if it was slightly luminous, or perhaps it was a trick of the ships light still. He looked mad, like Lear on the heath, his broad back to us. He was shouting obscenities at the top of his voice.

`I can’t stand this any longer! I pushed past Michael and ran into the night, slipping and stumbling as I approached.

`Max! Max, please! Please stop this!’ my voice broke with emotion.

He turned and for a while I thought he did not recognise me. He eyes were wide and anonymous, his hair knotted and wild. His body, so lithe and dark, seemed white, as if he was covered in ash. Suddenly he rushed at me, and grabbing my coat, pulled my up with tremendous force.

`You knew all of this? If you knew all of this why didn’t you tell me! The babies, the codex, you’ve led me to this!’ His words winded me, tore out my heart. I forced myself to look at him.

`I didn’t know, Max , and when I did, it was too late, it was already happening. And you asked me to help you – your future self – Wilcox – how could I have refused! I tried to keep what I knew from changing the future, and yet the future has already changed.’

`You liar!' He dropped me onto the roof and screamed again. `You've tricked me, – we have all been tricked!’

The fall winded me, cutting my knee. The pain made me feel nauseous. He stood over me, panting, and for a fleeting moment I thought he was going to kick at me, hard, in anger. I sensed the thought take shape in his mind, but then suddenly he sat down sobbing, burying his face in his hands. For a while, a few minutes, an infinity, we sat apart, and then I slowly crawled towards him, putting my hand on him. Slowly, with great caution, I touched him. Max turned hard into my embrace and wept like a child, great massive sobs that shook his body to its core.

`I don’t want to be different any more! I don’t want to stand out, I don’t want to be king!’

I ran my hands over his face and shoulders. His skin was ice cold, as it he had been sculptured from stone.

I felt hopeless.

`Then don’t do it, say no, we’ll come with you, all of us! I’d die for you Max, here, now. I’ll go to Seeth Sia Ova and say that you'll co-operate with them over their genetic regeneration, nothing more, they can offer us the immunity we need! We can go live on the coast somewhere!' the lie lay between us, exposed to the night.

His sobbing eased and we sat squashed together like people, who after a disaster, wait to be rescued.

`But what about Liz and the children?’ he asked eventually. `And what about all this!’ he gestured to the ships, to the sound of far off activity below the House. `This isn’t normal anymore – we’ve left normal again, somehow, somewhere!’

`You’re cold’ I said eventually, my voice still uneven. I peeled my coat off and put it over his naked shoulders. Unwashed, his smell was stronger, powerful, like incense. Max was in his wilderness, his days and nights in the forest, far from home.

`What would you have me do?’ he asked quietly, taking my hand. The voice was of the man I loved and knew.

`I don’t know Max, I don’t know anymore. I want you to be happy! I have always wanted you to be happy, from the moment we met! I would have you be happy Max, but if you say no, and then find that the only hope for humanity was you all along, that you were supposed to be king, supposed to bring the two races together, could you live with yourself? The Max I love, that Liz loves, is one who would give his life to save us from darkness, as we would all give ours to save him. ’

He smiled, at a far off memory. `I don’t want to be different, Jamie.’

I kissed his fingers.

`But what if you are?’

-----------------

I fell asleep. When I awoke, stiff and cold on the tiles, Max was sitting next to me eating some bread. He had torn a loaf in half. He looked splendidly wild, erotic, more powerful than I would have thought. Liz was next to him holding her hands across her stomach. As I sat up, Max crouched down and put his hand on my knee. `I hurt you, I am sorry, I didn’t mean to.’ I felt the curious warmth of his healing powers in my leg. He stood, and taking my hand, pulled me to my feet. He stood up, resolute now, calm. The madness had passed.

`What are we going to do?’ I asked. We were walking as a trio towards Michael, who was near the ladder that led back down to the balcony and the long gallery. As we approached and looked east we saw that there were probably about 1,000 people on and around the lawns, swarming about the terrace below, and that various gantries and gaffs had sprung up like strange metal vegetation. Max looked at me. He looked oddly like Wilcox, for a moment, or Wilcox as old Max. It was a curious, fleeting illusion.

`You know what I am going to do’ He kissed me and then, catlike, he climbed gracefully down the ladder, followed by Liz. Michael stood next to me. I noticed he had the book of Ea in his hand.

`You dropped it last night, when you ran out to Zan.’ He said quietly.

`Zan?’ I asked.

He nodded and winked.

We both looked at each other and then down at the mass of humanity below. A wave of vertigo forced me back against the wall. I took the book off him.

`Shit! Thanks, Michael! How careless, it might be the only copy!’

`Have you read it?’

I smirked at him. `No, have you?’

`Not all of it, obviously, but the bit book marked is worth a read?’ He seemed unusually cocky. I took the book off him. A helicopter whizzed past, and there was a ripple of noise through the crowds below. I risked looking down again, and could make out several Seeth walking up the stairs of the House towards the entrance. I opened the book. This is what I read:

[size=9]The Book of Ea -

And the Seeth Lords came down to Ea, from the dark spaces, and said onto Zan,

`The war is over and thou must return to thy kingdom, and the lesser part of the greater realm that is to be, for thou art destined to deliver us as has long been foretold. Thy peoples are ruined and live beyond the law and they kingdoms parted. Wilt thou treat with us?’

Three times Zan denied them thus, claiming that the throne was asunder, and his kingdom forfeit. `I am but a man, and am not the one you seek, Great Lord, I beseech that thou are mistaken.’

And the Seeth Lords put forth proofs that, despite his anger, Zan could not deny saying, `Thou have been tricked and misled! I have already renounced thy destiny' and so he parted from the Lords in anger.
And then the Seeth Lords looked to the Chargil, the reincarnation of the Seer, the appointed one and bearer of the seal, and asked him to intercede on their behalf. `For thou hast seen the shades of time, and know of that which is written. Thou has seen the Gates and crossed their threshold. Thou know the mysteries of the Seeth, although thou are but a man.' Then they appealed to Yantra Parker, and Lord Rath, who of all the Four, had kept most to the ancient ways, and who loved Max as a brother, and to each they begged to plead their case.

And thus the Chargil, Yantra Parker and Lord Rath went with the King onto a high place and there didst stay with him for three nights in great torment. Zan begged them to abandon him and allow him to stay on Ea, as but a man `for I am not changed’ and on each occasion they didst urge him to take up his destiny and to return to his power. `For thou shalt deliver us from darkness as has been foretold, or else we shall falter and all that was good shall perish.’

And thus on the third day, Zan came down amidst the Seeth Lords and the assembled representatives of the Tribes of Ea and said onto them in a loud voice, `Behold I am Zan, lawful King of Antar and Ea and I resume my Government and the deliverance of my peoples. Here I shall abide, and on Antar, until the ending of all Worlds.’[/size]


As I finished reading it a great cheer went up from below, a roar of sound, and there was much clapping and shouting and then a great silence. Above us, the ships boomed to each other in tribute.

`That is so fucking weird!’ My whole body chilled.

`Yeah – well – let the games begin!’ Michael took the book off me as he said this, and then added

`Of course the style sucks, I could have written it better, reduced the length, like a Reader’s Digest condensed version!’ he was boasting beautifully. I had an un-necessary morning wood wedged up in my pants. We were walking back towards the sash windows.

`I can imagine!’ I said, my voice heavy with love and sarcasm. `So what would you have written instead?’

`I’d have written, `And Max went onto the roof and sulked and ranted for three fucking nights until Jamie knocked some sense into him, Liz reminded him of his parental responsibilities, and until Rath told him that being a king would be cool!’ He smiled, that very horny smile Michael had when he knew he was being funny. I started to laugh, slowly at first, but by the time we had clambered back inside the Granolith we were howling and clinging to each other like mad men. So it was that I, Jamie Ralph, missed the actual moment of Zan's declaration, but of course I read about it - read about it as it happened - how's that for prophecy!

THE END
Last edited by Patroclus76 on Fri Jul 06, 2007 2:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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