“Go get some sleep,” Max was saying to his partner a half hour later as he walked his friend out to her car. Liz was still back in the house in a daze, and he knew he had to get back there to trying to get some semblance of the reality they were now facing together. “I know those graveyards can be brutal.”
“They aren’t easy, but then being a mother of two small children have shown me a good night sleep is sometimes overrated” Serena cracked.
“Seriously Max I didn’t want this to go as it did for you and Liz… especially when everything seemed more optimistic for the two of you.”
“As I have often told myself that things don’t come easy for Liz or me and therefore why should this be any different” Max admitted by the car.
“Thank you for telling me.”
“I was going to tell you if Molly hadn’t called,” Serena sighed. “It was the reason I came over, but I didn’t want to bust the glow the two of you had…”
“Something was going to bust us, but it might as well come from you, so I do appreciate and now I have to go in and try to figure out what our next step is going to be.”
Serena nodded as a frown came to her face as she remembered Molly, or should she call her Bella. “You’re going to have to prepare her for the reality of the situation?” she reminded her friend. “You have to prepare yourself too you know.”
“I know, but I am new in this situation so it’s Liz who is reliving the nightmare…”
Serena nodded as she knew her friend was going through a lot. “I have to ask. Are you angry?”
“About what?” Max asked as if he didn’t know what Serena was going for in her questioning.
“Are you angry at not knowing you had a kid out there…” Serena asked. “I would be pissed…”
“No, I can’t be…” Max sighed as he thought of his daughter and what she was facing if they were not facing an incredible hoax and because their own forensics lab came up with the match then he had to trust it.
“Why not?” Serena asked.
“I stayed gone. I put Liz through hell back then and I could have gone back and if I had then I would have been there. Serena, I could have gone back and found out the truth, but I didn’t. So, no I can’t be angry at Liz trying to protect herself and protect our child and plus once upon a time I believed I had a child out there and that was all a hoax so knowing I do
have a child, I can’t be angry at that miracle given that child is with a woman I have loved or pined for since we were in third grade. She is someone who I have gone through hell and back and now have a chance at that miracle and given what Molly or should I say Bella has gone through this past year, I have it easier… I hurt for them because Liz and Bella have had it much harder…”
Serena nodded as she sighed at the love her friend must have had for Liz and to know it gone wrong and has had caused so much pain. “So, I’ll probably be seeing you at the hospital later… I am stopping by once I hug my girls and get some sleep.”
“Yes, I figure we’ll be there so if we do, we’ll be seeing you… So, go home and see the girls and see your husband who probably wish you would come home, and I’ll try to figure all this out…”
“I am sorry Max,” Serena sighed as she got in her car and started the car as Max waited to see it drive off. Sighing and muttering to himself he turned and headed back into the house as he walked into the living room and couldn’t help seeing that Liz was still staring into space. “Liz” he asked quietly but got no response. “Liz,” he asked again.
She snapped out of her trance as she looked up at Max with tears coming to her face. “Is it true?” she asked as tried to process the greatest miracle and yet she didn’t know how to come to terms with it.
“I don’t know but Serena doesn’t lie.”
“I am sure she wouldn’t, not with something like this?” Liz asked as she tried to clear up the tears. “I have dreamt of this moment for so long, but I never imagined how it would come true.”
“You’ll have to identify her… to make sure she is Isabella
.” Max said softly as he took her hand in his as she leaned down, and he leaned with their heads touching. “Would you be able to do it?”
“I have to,” Liz said quietly. “You have to tell me Max. Tell me what happened with this girl who you thought was Molly but really could be Bella…
“Do you really want to know?” Max asked as if she was prepared to hear the horror story. He didn’t know if she could hear it, not yet.
“I have to know. If I am needing to go there and make sure she is my Bella. I need to know,” Liz said as she got up from the couch and started to pace the living room. “I need to know…”
“Okay…” Max sighed.
“How did you come to know this Molly or Bella?” Liz asked.
“I found her in the basement of the house, abused and barely alive…” he said softly as Liz’s eyes went wide as tears came to her face as she gasped.
“We don’t know all the facts of the story yet or what happened because we believed she was the daughter of a man who was likely abusive to his children. We believed she was a Davidson and she had four older brothers and her mother died earlier this year. There was a noise complaint and the station called me in along with Serena. Molly wasn’t there, and we didn’t think much of it because she was normally not there when we were called in on a noise complaint, which should have tipped us off, but it didn’t unfortunately…but later a tip did lead me back to the house and I found her hurt in the same house. We had every reason to believe it might have been her father… and because he’s disappeared, we focused on making sure she would make it and then I got drawn back to Roswell.”
“And you found out about Bella?” Liz asked her heart felt for the little girl. “Did she look like Bella?”
“Since I never met her,” Max said softly. “I couldn’t tell if she was Isabella or not” he said equally soft as Liz winced at that knowledge. “I didn’t recognize her and Liz the injuries she had made it very hard to identify her once she was at the hospital and getting treatment.”
“Then information came that she wasn’t a Davidson and that she only came to that household about a year ago…”
“So, the same time frame that Bella has been missing?” Liz asked.
“Yes,” Max nodded. “And Molly wasn’t found in the California system of registered births.”
“So, she was put in the system?” Liz asked. “The DNA system?”
“Yes, and Serena was handling that part as I was being drawn back to New Mexico and to you…”
“Right,” Liz nodded as she thought of the eerie coincidence that Bella might have just been waiting for Max to find her, which also had the uncanny sequence of bringing him back to his family in Roswell and to her… and for the truth to finally be told on multiple fronts.
“How were you in the system to be able to match Bella?” Liz asked. “In high school you and Michael tried to stay out of the of the way of the authorities and specially any giving of blood. We used Alex that one time…”
“I don’t know, I assume it could have my hospital stays?” Max admitted. “Or I might have had to give blood or something when I was in the FBI,” he sighed. “I am just glad no other flags were raised.”
“Can you handle going to the hospital and making sure she is Bella?” Max asked as Liz stopped pacing. “Did you want to do it?”
“I have to,” Liz said softly. “I need to see her. I need to know…”
“You have to be prepared for what you might see,” Max said softly. “She has healed in many ways from her initial injuries but still she has bandages and she just went through another surgery for her arm.”
“God,” Liz whispered as tears came to her eyes. “She was in hell, wasn’t she?”
“But she has a chance to come home,” Max said as he got up from the couch and took her into a hug as he didn’t know what it meant for any of them but knew they had to take it one step at a time. “She’s a fighter.”
“If she’s our daughter. How could she not be,” Liz asked softly?
Sighing as she looked around the room and checked the clock and knowing that reality was calling in more ways “I have to call Kyle. He needs to know…”
“Why don’t we wait,” Max said softly. “I agree he needs to know, but let’s take it one step at a time. First step is for you to get over there and make the official identification. Then we can call the family, and everyone.”
“I guess,” Liz asked.
“I promise you that we need to know first before getting everyone’s hopes up. We have the DNA on our side, but we need to know face to face… Better than you know without getting anyone’s hopes up.”
“You’re right,” Liz nodded.
“Good, let’s go…” Max said as he led the woman he loved closer to the door as they picked up their jackets and past the remnants of hours of passion. Neither didn’t know why didn’t clean up but maybe it was a memory that was now in danger of being clouded due to the cold truth of reality. “Come on, let’s go see our daughter.”
Liz smiled as she prayed this was the end of their nightmare…
Isabel was looking through scrapbooks at home. Kyle was at the high school to meet with his assistant coaches to discuss the upcoming school year and so she was resting at home before meeting her mother for lunch and their planned shopping that afternoon.
She had taken the family scrapbook to bed with her while she took a nap. She and Kyle both had been restless the night before in their inability to sleep. She could blame the baby. But she knew Kyle dreamt of Bella and not knowing what was happening in California.
Especially once they had talked to Maria and Michael and found out Liz had been silent since leaving Roswell and Michael hadn’t been able to reach Max either, which only aggravated them in wondering if something was going on and they weren’t being told.
And given Max’s recent track record, Isabel couldn’t help but fret. It wasn’t the baby making for restless sleep for Isabel it was her brother and what they weren’t hearing…
Smiling when she got a page of pictures from the last birthday party they all had attended for Bella. The little girl was so pretty in her pink dress and her dark hair growing longer by the day. She was happy to be with her family, and she won a game of trivia that was played by the family as they stood in the Crashdown. The restaurant closed for the private party.
Everyone attended, and she knew her parents had been sensitive because Liz wasn’t being upfront about who was Bella’s father, and so they found it odd to be at the part for a little girl who was their granddaughter and yet they couldn’t voice it yet.
Sighing she laid and looked at the happy pictures and imagined what it would be like to have Bella back, as she touched the solo picture of the birthday girl as she blew out the candles of a cake that Michael had made for the little girl. It was a Harry Potter theme cake with picture not of Harry on the cake but of Hermoine. She and Betty identified with Hermoine more than the boys. They liked to test everyone with their smarts and have their own adventures.
Fingering the picture her eyes closed as she drifted and found herself in hazy zone. In Dream Zone; Isabel walked down a hallway. She sensed she was in a building that almost looked like a hospital as more vanishing doors appeared and finally she stopped.
A door opened all by itself and she looked in and she saw a hospital bed as growing young brunette got out of a wheelchair and got into the hospital bed cringing at the pain she felt. “Max where are you” she whispered.
And then from the other side of the hallway, she saw Max and Liz walking down the hallway and while Liz hesitated as she stopped at the door to the room. Max gave her a quick kiss and walked through the door.
The girl in the bed smile went wide, “Max you came…”
“Molly…” Max said.
“Am I Molly?” the girl asked as the smile flinched on Max’s face as Isabel stood by the door and saw Liz have tears come to her eyes.
Eyes popping up open on Isabel’s side as she wondered just what she had seen as it didn’t seem like a fantasy of a girl’s imagination but very real. Sitting up she tried to gather herself when the phone rang. “What” she said as she grabbed her phone.
“Did I wake you up?” came Michael’s voice.
“What happened?” a testy Isabel asked as she adjusted to waking up and what she had seen. She had to be crazy otherwise that girl looked like a slightly older Bella; her namesake.
“What’s with you?” Michael asked from his office as he sat and did paperwork. He had been trying to get home and spend some time with his daughter because camp was only a morning session that day. So, Betty was going to be home with her grandmother Amy. But an obstacle in his getting home had arisen and he had to check it out with Isabel.
“Sorry I had fallen asleep,” Isabel said. “Your call woke me up.”
“Oh sorry…” Michael said.
“So, what is up?” Isabel asked.
“I was wondering if you could stop by house. Do you have any plans? I am at the office but heading home to spend time with Betty and give Amy some help. Maria is at the station.”
“Why do you need me?” Isabel asked. “I had plans with Mom and we were going shopping.”
“Can you swing by after lunch for a few minutes. It can be anytime. I need to speak to you.”
“Why?” Isabel asked wearily. “Is it Max?” she asked worriedly.
“No, still no communication from him but it’s about Bella…” Michael admitted. “I’ll tell you more when you stop by, so you’re not distracted at your lunch.”
“I am going to be distracted now that you told me it’s about Bella,” Isabel snarled. “But fine, I’ll call when I can come by.”
“Thanks, Is, say hello to Diane for me.” Michael said as he hung up while Isabel stared at the phone and wondered what he needed to tell her what the heck was her dream about… she usually was able to see dreams or their greatest desires, but not a premonition of what would actually happen as that was more Liz’s power which she had to wonder why her power was telling her this, especially when the child resembled Bella and yet was calling herself a different name.
It wasn’t a dream at all but something that was happening in California as Max and Liz walked down the hallways of the hospital. Max clutching Liz’s hand and she grasps at for dear life. Once they got to the right room, she had hung back, and Max had gone into the room to greet a pleased little girl who looked at Max as he came into the room as if she was looking at him in a different way and with different eyes.
“Am I Molly?” the child asked with her eyes wide.
“What do you know?” Max said as his face tried to be neutral as he stared at the child and wondered how he never saw it before, and especially not when he knew more than he once did about Bella. The child stared at him with blonde streaked evident in her hair, the hair overall was lighter than the darkness in her pictures and her face was fuller than the pictures he remembered of Bella.
“Only Serena told me that they had questions about who I am, and then she had to go away without telling me what is going on. I need to know Max, is it true. Do I belong somewhere else?”
“Yes,” Max said.
“I do?” the child asked as she had sat on her bed as she got back from a session to monitor the strength of her other arm and legs. She hated how her other arm was immobile by the cast and therefore she couldn’t draw to her usual level of detail as a pad of paper was next to her on the bed.
“I am sorry if this is confusing for you…” Max said.
“Are you my real father?” the child asked as Max felt drawn to the child and now knew why he had to help this little girl when he first found her in that basement room. “I need to know” she asked quietly as Liz cried from the door as more and more all her dreams were coming true.
“Why do you ask?” Max asked. “If I am, then we wouldn’t have met in your other life.”
“My memory,” the girl asked. “I remember hearing your name, and then I remember flashes of you… I don’t know how… but I do… I need to know.”
“I am sorry for this Mo…” Max started and stopped himself. “I know you’re confused.”
“My name isn’t Molly but is it Isabella?” she asked as Liz gasped outside the door as she watched with tears came down her face. “I remember being this Isabella. I remember people I don’t see in the Davidson family or in a long time. I remember birthday parties. I don’t remember anything that has Molly in it…”
“We think you’re Isabella,” Max allowed. “I wish this was easier for you but right now we are trying to take it easy. But there is someone who might be able to help you.”
“Help me, how?” the child asked.
“Someone wants to see you. She would be able to know if you are who we think you are okay…”
Max nodded as he turned and saw Liz barely in the room as she was clearly nervous as he walked to the door as “Molly” followed him with her glaze as her eyes popped when she saw Max approach a woman, a stranger and yet she rang so familiar for “Molly”. “Are you okay?” he asked softly to the woman, who only nodded and grabbed his hand and held on tight.
“This is Liz, and she wanted to meet you.” Max said as he reentered into the room.
Liz held his hand as she walked in with him as her glaze never wavered from the little who laid in the hospital bed. “Hello” she whispered.
“Molly” became silent.
“Are you okay?” Max asked softly to the child who only could look at both Max and Liz as if she was in a trance. “Speak to us…”
Liz asked as if she was afraid to say the name and hear the response. “Isabella Maria?
” she asked a little loudly.
“Mommy” she asked softly, almost too softly to be heard in the room, but Max heard and so did Liz who burst down crying as she went into Max’s arms for a hug as Bella
looked at Max and then Liz. “She’s my Mommy?” she asked.
“Yes.” Max confirmed as they knew now that it was no lie or no hoax. They had found their daughter.
Bella was alive, and they could see her with their very eyes.