Leap of Faith (AU,ML,Mature) Completed

Finished stories that feature the characters from the show, but there are no aliens. All fics completed on the main AU without Aliens board will eventually be moved here.

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Behrsgirl77
Obsessed Roswellian
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Leap of Faith (AU,ML,Mature) Completed

Post by Behrsgirl77 » Wed Oct 18, 2006 7:11 pm

Title: Leap of Faith

Author: Tanya

Rating: Mature

Category: Dreamer and a little Candy

Disclaimer: I do not own a thing, except for my thoughts and ideas and a couple of the characters I made up for the story. I will state for the record upfront, this story is in no way in association with You’ve Got Mail staring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks other than the fact that I make great use of the Internet. Basically, this is a MySpace (which is also not mine nor do I really use it in the story...but just incase!) meets Roswell, but that’s not my plot, so keep that in mind. I think I can come up with something a bit more creative than that :wink:

Summary: What if the person you spent your whole life looking for, is someone you already met?

A/N – And so here is yet another story I write. This will be short, probably no more than ten parts and I have a good portion of this written. I’ve also edited it more times than I care to share, but I’m not perfect and so there may still be some mistakes, and for that I apologize. This will be updated on a weekly basis on Wednesday's. I just needed to get this story written before it drove me mad and sometimes I need a break from the norm. I also have to thank Stacie & La'Shon because they keep me positive ... and always make time for me!

Dedicated to: Tigger, because I won't give up if you don't :wink: love you! *Tonto*

<center>Image
Banner by: Me</center>


Chapter One


<center>Sweet Misery</center>


A soft light from the candle burning cast a yellow tinged glow illuminating the tiny corner of the room. Clicking of deft fingers against the keyboard was all that could be heard in the stark hour of the night. It was her ritual for months now, wake up after a nightmare, and walk over to the desk in the far corner of her quaint living room to reach out to others.

How odd she would find comfort, a sense of normalcy, in strangers. Maybe it made her feel better that no one could see her, or directly talk to her if she didn’t want them to. All she had to do was close her screen and move on. Yes, that was much easier than meeting and talking to people when they were standing right in front of her. Making endless judgments about her. How she hated the way eyes would roam her body, her face, and even her clothing, making mental comments with just one look.

How cruel the world truly was, she had learned her lesson a long time ago. And because of that she was smarter and yes, even a little more cynical towards the world. It turned its back on her, and now she would do her best to survive with what she was left with.

Settling back against the old wooden chair, she’d dragged from the kitchen, she logged onto her favorite site. It was a conglomeration of people from all over the world, it wasn’t just a chat room, it was far better than that, she thought with a smile.

As soon as she was prompted she typed in her screen name, sleeplessinroswell, and then entered her password. She waited a moment before her homepage loaded. Once it did, she smiled and relaxed against the rickety chair. Turning, she reached out to the couch nearby, grabbed a pillow and placed it directly behind her. That felt much better, her back and neck were killing her. Today was a busy day at work, as it always was.

Deciding that her page needed some livening, she decided to update the colors. Today she felt a little blue and with a few clicks of her mouse, the perfect theme was selected in a pastel blue with little white daisies. Now it was time to get down to business. First she checked her inbox, and found a message from her online friend, Maria.

Maria was the first person she had met on the CyberCafe, almost eight months ago. It helped that Maria lived on the east coast, since she usually logged on late in the evening.

She didn’t have any friends in town, if she didn’t count the Harding's.

She had met the Harding's well over a year ago, they had taken her in and even given her a job at the diner they owned. They had even extended an invitation for her to stay above the diner in a small two-bedroom apartment, where she now sat. She was more than grateful and more than certain, the Harding’s were the last trustworthy people left, besides Maria, in the world.

In the midst of reading Maria’s long-winded message, she noticed the message bar on the right side of her screen, alerting her to the new members who joined the community within the last twenty-four hours. She loved to peak into the new members’ profiles, and see what their pages had to offer. In fact, she loved to read the blogs, and view all the pictures posted on their pages. That however, wasn’t the best part to her though. The best part were the chat rooms, she loved to talk to different people from all around the world, about anything and everything, all without revealing who she really was.

She could be silly, and outgoing, or she could be shy and teasing, and no one knew whether that was her real personality or not. Too bad, she herself wasn’t quite sure of what her personality was anymore. She had lost that some time ago. Was she funny? She liked to think so. She could entertain her customers for two minutes at a time, and for some of the customers she had to deal with, that was a miracle in and of itself.

Deciding to leave Maria’s two-page message for later, she set her sights on the newcomers to the site. She clicked on the first one, and found an explosion of colors.

“This should be interesting,” she whispered to herself as she folded one leg under the other and began reading what that particular member had to say. It would be another long night, that is, if she didn’t fall asleep in her usual spot…off to the side of her laptop.


<center>****</center>


The diner was packed for the usual morning rush; she couldn’t wait for the day to be over with. She had gotten even less sleep than usual. If only she could sleep like a normal person, but with the nightmares and…

“Miss, my coffee is not hot enough,” came one customers voice and she cringed. Her head was throbbing and she had the darkest circles under her eyes, and now she had to deal with this.

She wondered if people purposely got up in the morning, in a bad mood, and decided to make someone else’s life just a little bit more miserable.

“I’m sorry, sir. I will get you a fresh cup.” She extended a smile forced from the deepest recesses of herself and removed the ceramic cup from the table, taking it back to the counter replace.

Today she had an eight-hour shift, shorter than most, so at least she had something to look forward to.


<center>****</center>


“Daddy, I’m so hungry,” his son said as he rubbed his belly in exaggeration. Max shifted his son a little higher on his chest as he continued down the busy sidewalk.

He had been back in town for six months and between his busy schedule and getting his son to school on time during the week, he didn’t have any downtime. Today, though he had the entire day free and was hell bent on spending it taking his son to breakfast and then to the park. Later, they would have dinner and watch a cartoon together before he put his son to bed.

“I know you are little man, as soon as I find a place that…”

“Oh daddy right there!” his son’s little index finger pointed towards a bright spaceship mounted on the front of a café not more than two feet in front of them.

“Trevor, you only want to eat there because of the spaceship. Let’s see what else there is.” Max strolled past the diner, he took a quick glance inside as he did and noticed that the waitresses were wearing teal green uniforms, with silver alien head aprons, and shiny silver antennas. The sign read, Crashdown Café, what was this place, he wondered to himself.

“Daddy, no! I wanna go there!” Trevor fussed in his father’s arms, causing him to tighten his hold around his squirming son.

“Trev,” Max’s voiced sounded stern but he was a pushover for his son.

“Daddy,” came his five year olds dejected voice.

“Okay, but just this time.” He heard himself say the words, but even he knew they weren’t true. His son had him wrapped around his little pinky finger and to be honest, Max wouldn’t have had it any other way.

Turning around quickly he pulled open the wooden door and scanned the room for a place to sit. He waited until someone came to seat them; too bad his son had little patience for that.

“Right there, daddy. Right over there!” his son bounced in his arms, screeching so loudly that Max hoped the patrons didn’t mind too much.

After settling his son on a booster seat, he scanned the room once again. He was able to take in the full view of the interior. There was orange wallpaper, with green aliens and spaceships. He turned his head and noticed what his son was now looking up at; a mural of a spaceship with three aliens next to it. He shook his head in amusement; this had to be the silliest place he’d ever been inside of.

“Hi, my name is Liz and I’ll be your waitress. Can I get you something to drink?” He and his son’s attention turned to the petite brunette now standing at their table. She placed a menu in front of him along with a smaller children’s menu. Her long straight brown hair was pulled up into a tight ponytail and that silly silver antenna bobbed back and forth. He struggled not to chuckle; instead he turned his gaze down to this son.

“What do you want to drink?” Trevor took a moment to remove his eyes from the shiny antennas to his father’s gaze.

“I want soda.”

“You’re not getting soda,” Max sighed, it was his mistake for letting him try some last week. Now the kid was addicted.

“But I want soda. The cherry kind like you gave me daddy,” Trevor licked his lips and his eyes grew wide with excitement.

A small laugh came from his left, and Max turned to look up at their waitress. He blushed and then felt the need to explain himself. He didn’t want her thinking he was a terrible father giving his five year old soda.

“He wanted to try it out, so I gave him a sip. Who knew the kid would take to it so quickly?” He offered her weak smile to which she returned a bright smile and a look of understanding and of something else he couldn’t quite pinpoint. Was it nervousness or…hell he had no idea.

“I think if you can’t spoil your kids, who will. Right?” Liz placed a hand on the table, and leaned over slightly to regard the child.

“How about some chocolate milk?” When he looked unimpressed with the alternative, she added, “I can make it any color you want.” At that Trevor smiled and nodded his head.

“What color would you like?”

“Uhm…” Trevor surveyed the room as if he couldn’t think of a color on his own, when his eyes settled back on her. “Can I have green?” he asked so innocently that Liz couldn’t help but laugh.

“Of course you can! And for you, sir?” she turned her attention to the boy’s father.

“I’ll take a large orange juice.” Max smiled up at her. He was trying to determine if he liked her calling him sir. Of course she appeared to be younger than him, but not by much.

He wanted to thank her for the help but wasn’t sure if it was appropriate, so he decided against it. She nodded her head and excused herself to retrieve the drinks.

“Daddy, can I have a cheeseburger?” Max tossed his head back in exasperation. Would he have to pay for all his misjudgments when it came to his son? So what, one time he gave him a bite of a cheeseburger for breakfast? He groaned; he was a terrible father.

“Trev, we don’t have that for breakfast. Daddy only let you taste it, but you can only have them for lunch or dinner. Got it?”

Trevor pondered that for a moment before nodding his head. “Got it!”


<center>****</center>


Her hands shook as she poured the juice into the glass. What the hell was wrong with her? She’d seen a thousand guys coming in and out of here, so why did she have such a strong reaction to him?

Probably because he was the most gorgeous man she’d ever seen up close. His eyes, lord she could have drowned in them. They weren’t quite brown, more on the hazel side, but with a golden hue to them. His hair, an inky black, short on the sides and a little longer in the front. He looked like he stepped right out of GQ magazine.

She’d never had a reaction to a man that strong before in her life. At least not that she could remember. And as of late she hadn’t had any reaction to any man, which is why she needed to pull herself together.

As she mixed the food coloring into the child’s chocolate milk, she couldn’t suppress her smile. He was adorable, and the spitting image of his father. She wondered how old the man was, no, scratch that, she didn’t want to know and she wasn’t interested in the least.

She finished up and walked back over to their table, steeling herself to have no reaction to him at all.

She didn’t like it and she hated that her body betrayed her. It was a foreign feeling for her, reacting to a man, and she wasn’t at all comfortable with it. She couldn’t wait until he left, no matter how good-looking he was, or how adorable his son was.


<center>****</center>


After the waitress left them with their breakfast orders, Max couldn’t help but let his eyes wander around the room for her. When his eyes landed on her, sitting on a stool near the back of the diner, he noticed something he hadn’t when she was waiting on them.

Sadness.

How odd, he thought. Why did she look so sad? It wasn’t that she wore a frown; in fact she was having a conversation with someone behind the counter, yet her eyes spoke volumes about her mind-set.

Even from his position, the profile of her reminded him of his son for just a brief fleeting moment. Whenever Trevor learned something new, he always had this look, as if trying to fit the pieces together in his head. To make sense of it all somehow, even if the entire theory didn’t stick, he still mulled it over in his head before it became a passing thought.

To be remembered or discarded.

He shifted in his booth; he needed to not worry about other people and their supposed problems. He had enough of his own to handle raising his son. In fact, it seemed that Trevor was now playing with the syrup on his plate; signally it was time for them to get going.

As if she knew, the waitress Liz, that was her name he recalled, approached the table.

“Can I get you anything else?” she asked and he couldn’t help but notice that the sadness had disappeared from her eyes.

“No, thank you.” Max reached in his back pocket for his wallet but froze when he watched as she pulled a damp paper towel from behind her back, and offered it to him.

“I thought…I figured…he would get pretty messy,” she stuttered out and grew mortifyingly flushed.

Max reached out and grabbed it from her delicate fingers, and offered her a genuine smile. “Thank you. I appreciate it.”

“You’re welcome. Have a great day.” She waved back to Trevor when he lifted his short arm in the air and said his goodbye as she walked away.

“You ready to go little man?” Max asked, lifting his son up into his arms. Trevor simply nodded as he surveyed the room looking for the pretty girl with the brown hair that served him and his daddy.

Max walked to the register and was so busy with that, and trying to keep his son from fussing in his arms, that he never noticed the petite brunette come up behind him and sneak his son something to take with him.

A little memento, that happened to be silver and shiny. She smiled and walked away giving the small child another little wave before disappearing into the back room for her break.

TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Sat Mar 17, 2007 9:06 pm, edited 22 times in total.

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Behrsgirl77
Obsessed Roswellian
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Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 11:21 am
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Wed Oct 25, 2006 7:06 pm

AN - You guys definitely know how to brighten my world. Thank you so much for the response on this! You may notice the parts will get longer and longer, which is necessary for me to keep this story from getting out of control. Before I forget, I've posted an author's note on Wings...please read it for more info :wink: :oops:

Some feedback to your feedback...


La'Shon - Trevor was your name, remember that *lol*
Ellie - Thanks sweetie...miss you!
candycane14 - So happy you like Trevor! I don't have any kids and I am enjoying experimenting a bit with them.
clueless - Thanks!
roswellianprincess16 - you really need a shorter name :P but I *heart* you just the same! Thank you for everything!
anonymousarfan - Thank you!
Mariael311 - But was it interesting? *lol*
Earth2Mama - Who said Tess was in this? I assure you she's not I just couldn't come up with a better name haha!!
hazz - Thanks...and again no Tess :wink:
LairaBehr4 - LOL! You crack me up!!
Smac - I'm so sorry! I would have mentioned it but I didn't think I'd get that much of it written to be able to post this before December. Am I forgiven?
frenchkiss70 - You know I love to spoil! :)
mareli - you are full of questions, which will be answered shortly!
begonia9508 - Thank you and I'm glad I was able to brighten your day :)
Jason's Lover - Thanks sweetie! R U missing Jen? :(
Queen Fee - you also have lots of questions, no worries you'll get the full story shortly!
dreamsatnight - Thank you!
guelbebek - questions...questions...answers...soon :)
roswell3053 - as far as what Liz gave Trevor...you'll find out in this part...pay close attention :wink:
confusedfool - Thank you!!
alizaleven -*waves* Thanks!
IzzyEvans2201_PuertoRico - Thanks sweetie!
NorafanofMaxandLiz - Welcome Back! I'll be sending you a PM shortly. Thank you!
max and liz believer - Jo, Trevor can be one very insistant child...but I wonder if his father is as well :twisted: Thanks!
Dreamer06 - Glad you like Max...here's a bit more of him :wink:
Isabelle! - :oops: Thank you!
POM - Glad you like!
tijuana_lady - Jules, here's the deal...I'll update if you post regularly *lol* :P Love you! Miss you!
Lurkers - If you're out there and reading, I hope you enjoy this next part!




Chapter Two


<center>Pictures of You</center>


After tucking his son into bed, Max decided to check his email. He hadn’t been online in almost a week, surely all the junk mail was filling his inbox. And no doubt all the joke emails from his frat brothers were in there as well.

He settled back into his black leather chair and waited for the computer to start up. It was still early, and even though he should be getting to bed, he decided to stay up for a little longer.

Running his own landscaping business wasn’t easy, but it allowed him the freedom to be home to put his son on the bus for school and be home when it dropped him off in the afternoon.

Of course, then he had to change his hours and hire another employee to take over his work, but it was worth it to be able to have the time with his son. Some days though he had to work late and so his neighbor’s sixteen-year-old daughter would watch them. He was a little wary about leaving his child with a stranger, but his neighbor was one of his long-term employees. His business had always been in town, but he used to commute before his son was of schooling age. His mother, Diane, would watch his son during the day and then he would pick him up at night.

He hated that part, missing out on so much time with his son, which is why he had to make a decision. Either move the business and lose all his cliental or relocate his home. The latter won out. In fact, he had only planned on living with his parents for a few months, but seeing as Trevor was still too young for school, he decided to delay his plans.

Before Trevor came along, Max had planned to move to Roswell, which is why his business was started here. But things change, plans change and he knew better than anyone, that no one can plan their future as much as they’d like to try. Things always happened to impede the process, not always bad, but they still existed for a reason.

To remind us we’re human, he gathered.

Finally, his e-mail box finished updating and he saw a few emails from some college friends he still kept in contact with. One in particular was, Michael. Max shook his head at this best friends’ screen name, BigG. It was a nickname that was given to him when they were in college. He was Max’s big brother in their fraternity and it just stuck.

Michael never wrote long-winded messages. Usually there was a link to something interesting he’d found on the Internet and suggested that Max check out. Today was no different. There was an email with a link and a message that said…

Found this about a month ago. Have a look around; you might find something you like for a change. You need to get out more, date, and for God’s sake stop acting like you’re forty! So you have a kid? The runt might be cute, but I’m sure if he understood, he wouldn’t want daddy to not get laid.

Mike


Max rolled his eyes and clicked on the link. It loaded a page for a site called, CyberCafe. What was this all about…wait, he had heard about it from some guys at work. Did people really sit and chat to strangers on this thing? He shook his head, but signed up anyway and set up his page as best as possible for the time being.

He immediately typed Michael’s name, figuring he couldn’t be original and used his nickname for a screen name. Finding his page, he saw that Michael was online. Quickly he clicked around the screen and waited for his yahoo messenger to load. Then he sent an instant message to Michael.

So you really talk to girls on this thing? He typed.

Hell yeah man. Look, let me hook you up.

No thanks. I know what you’re idea of a hook up is.

Max shook his head. The last time Michael set him up with a girl, she got naked in the front seat of his car, before he had a chance to protest. He swiftly told the girl to get dressed and promptly dropped her off back home. He might be a guy, but rushing into something serious or not, wasn’t what he was looking for. He’d had a lifetime of that and had a son because of it.

He wasn’t celibate, but he was hardly in the playing field. He was more of a sideliner, until an opportunity presented itself at the right time. One-night stands were quickly becoming a thing of the past for him. It left him empty and even if his body was sated, his mind wasn’t and his heart, well that was another story.

Hey, I was just trying to show you a good time. Anyway, check out my blog. Girls post on there like crazy. Right now I have this hot topic going, head over there and I’ll catch up with you tomorrow.

After Michael signed off, Max headed over to the hot topic his friend just referred to. He let out a laugh when he saw the title, Bad Boys vs. Good Guys.

“Typical,” he muttered as rested an elbow on his keyboard drawer, and began reading the post from the beginning.

A half hour later, he leaned back and rested his head on the back of the chair. He needed to rest his eyes, and more importantly he needed something to drink. Standing up and stretching his back he made his way through the living room and into the kitchen.


<center>****</center>


She tossed and turned, a frown creasing her brows, sweat sticking to her heated body as she nearly fell from the bed. A moment later her body lurched up from the mattress, her heart hammering hard in her chest as she gasped for air.

It was the same dream, the same one she’d had for months. She wondered if it would ever go away, she wished it would. Taking a moment to gather herself, she tossed the covers off to the side and swung her legs from the bed. She wasn’t tall enough for her feet to reach the floor, so they dangled aimlessly against the mattress.

She pushed her damp hair from her face and stood shakily. It would be another sleepless night. It only felt like she’d slept for an hour, but in reality it was four. She’d gone to bed early, because she knew she had to get her rest where she could nowadays.

A small smile managed to touch her lips, despite the churning in her stomach. She pulled her robe from the back of her bedroom door, tugged it on and made her way to the hall. She paused a few feet from her door and turned to survey the room next to hers. A single tear fell from her brown eyes; it was one of mixed emotions.

Love and sadness.

She tugged the robe around her slim figure a little tighter as she shuffled off to her favorite spot.

Lighting a cinnamon scented candle, she powered up her laptop, as she did every night. Tonight, she had felt a small tinge of apprehension when logging onto her favorite site. It was an odd feeling, but one she could easily dismiss.

As always there was her email from Maria. She leaned back in her chair; pillow nestled right behind her back and read.

Liz,

I think I’ve met the man of my dreams…okay so maybe he’s the man of the moment. But that’s okay right?

Not every guy has to be the love of my life, but I don’t know, this feels so different. He’s great looking and he’s really sweet. I’m not sure if I’m used to a guy being sweet to me. I don’t think I expect much from a guy, so maybe I’m just easy to please.

What do you think?

How about you? Anyone catch your eye? I know with everything going on you probably don’t have the time, but you should get out there.

I wish I could just come over and we could gossip over my favorite food, coffee. Too bad we live on opposite ends of the map. Not that you’re too far from Jersey, but it’s far enough. Maybe I should move…


Liz smiled at Maria’s banter. Even though they’d never met, only chatted online and talked on the phone occasionally, Liz knew that Maria had a quirky personality and it kept a person on their toes. That’s what she liked about her the most. Maria was so unpredictable. It was refreshing.

Liz wrote back a quick note. Maria might have felt free to share every detail of her life, but Liz was more reserved. She shared nothing too personal, however she’d shared more with Maria than she had with anyone else. Maybe one day, she thought, she’d tell Maria the rest of her story. One day, when she herself could wrap her mind around it.

Maria,

Sounds like you’re happy with this guy. What’s his name? You know I love living vicariously through you, so send me a picture.


Liz paused for a moment, wondering if she should tell Maria about the guy in the diner from the other day. Not taking too long to reconsider, she quickly typed out her meeting with him and his son before sending the email off.

Speaking of guys. I met one. Well not really, he was a customer. He had the most adorable son, and he was drop dead gorgeous. I don’t know what his name was, or anything else but it’s better that way.

At least that’s what she told herself over and over again whenever she thought of him.

Anyway, I haven’t seen him since. I can’t help but remember what seeing him did to me. It was like for one minute, I was myself again. I’d forgotten what that felt like.

I’ll talk to you tomorrow. Hopefully I’ll catch you after work so you can tell me more about this guy.

Liz


Clicking out of her email, she headed over to her favorite site. After logging in, she immediately went to a member’s page she’d saved from a few weeks ago. It always had the most interesting blog conversations going, and she wanted to see what comments were posted tonight.

Her eyes scanned the page. “Found it,” she smiled triumphantly as she began to read, Bad Boys vs. Good Guys.



<center>****</center>


Max couldn’t help but laugh. Some of the comments were thought provoking while others made absolutely no sense at all.

Finally he’d made it to the very last comment, which appeared to have been posted not more than five minutes ago. It was from the user, sleeplessinroswell. He clicked on it and read the short comment.

So, how can you tell the difference?

Funny how none of the other members asked that question, it was, after all the most logical.

He felt compelled to answer the girl with the white daisy in place of her picture. Most members seemed to have their own picture posted, himself included.

Clicking on the reply button, he typed in his response.

sleeplessinroswell,

You bring up an interesting, yet debatable question. How can you tell a good guy from a bad one? It’s not easy, some guys are looking for one thing, actually I should say, most guys are. Not all, mind you, but most.

Good guys, won’t rush you, they will take the time to get to know you. Bad guys, well please refer to my comment above. How about you? How can a guy like me tell a good girl from a bad one? What qualities should I be looking for?

KappaMan


He left the questions in hopes she’d answer. He felt a twitch of anticipation waiting to see if she responded.


<center>****</center>


Liz stared at her screen, biting down on her fingernail. Should she answer? Of course she should, it would be stupid not to. But what should she say? She’d always been the good girl, she didn’t know a thing about how bad girls acted.

Shrugging, she typed in her most honest answer.

KappaMan,

It depends on what you’re looking for, I guess. Good girls are everywhere. I suppose bad ones are too. A good girl though, is just looking for someone to make her laugh, make her feel comfortable in your presence and wants to feel special, no matter how hard a task that might seem to tackle.


She paused for a moment; she was about to flirt with him. Devil take her, she couldn’t do that…

“Why not, Liz? He doesn’t know you and you sure as hell don’t know him,” she talked herself into it and then proceeded to finish her post.

I take it you’re a self-proclaimed ‘Good Guy’ so tell me, have you met any good girls in your life?

She had to walk away; she needed a glass of water. However when she returned she was wholeheartedly unprepared for the message she had found awaiting her.

sleepless,

Check your inbox.


She nearly choked on the water. Her heart was slamming against her chest and she was teetering on the edge of her chair in nervous anticipation. Mechanically, she slid her mouse over the cute little daisy shaped inbox at the top of her screen and saw she had one message waiting for her.

Oh God! It was from him, she was sure of it. But now what? What did it say?

“Get a grip Liz,” she chastised herself.

Nevertheless, she felt the need to take a deep fortifying breath before she opened the message that was labeled…‘From the Good Guy.’ She couldn’t help the tiny smile that formed on her lips. She settled back into her chair, getting herself as comfortable as possible.

sleepless,

Hope you don’t mind. I didn’t want to tie up my friend’s page with our conversation.

But back to the topic at hand... I’ve met a few good girls, but none of them seemed interesting enough to hold my attention. I often wonder why that is, maybe I’m just being too selective.

From what you say, good girls want to feel special but I have to wonder if that involves buying them expensive gifts to keep them happy. I think maybe I’m approaching the whole dating process all wrong.

What about you? The guys you date, are they all bad, or do some of them have redeeming qualities?

Good Guy


She stared at the tiny black cursor for five minutes. She didn’t date, should she say that? Or should she lie? It didn’t matter if she lied or not, she didn’t even know this person. For once, she thought, she’d be honest…a little.

Good Guy,

You have a very interesting friend. His page always has something to catch the eye, of course the half naked girls don’t really appeal to my tastes…

If the girls you date require gifts, then I really think you should look elsewhere. What’s wrong with going out and just having a good time? Does that exist anymore? I have to wonder since I’ve been out of the dating scene for years now.

I think what I imagine as a good date, is probably boring to someone like you. Not that I would presume to know you, but let’s just say I don’t think I’m good date material.


While she awaited his response, she decided to browse his page. Maybe, with some luck he had a picture of himself on there. There was no harm in looking, now was there?


<center>****</center>


Max sat back reading over her last message again. She hadn’t dated in years? He thought the four months he’d been off the scene was bad. He wondered why she didn’t.

Of course she’d mentioned that what she’d imagine was a good date would have differed from his ideas. Maybe, maybe not, he thought.

This girl was from Roswell, he could easily tell that from her screen name.

Unfortunately, she had no pictures posted of herself. He of course did, he wondered if she would look. Probably.

He typed in his final response for the night. He decided to play with her a little, since in place of her picture, she had a picture of a daisy.

Daisy,

Tell me why you don’t date? I don’t mean to be forward, but I guess I’ve been out of the dating scene for four months, and that seems too long. Then again, I am searching for the good girl out there that can capture my attention.

And I think you’d be surprised at what I think a good date would be. Most people make assumptions about me; I guess we’re all plagued by that aren’t we?

Assumptions on who we are, what we like and dislike.

So describe to me your perfect date, and I’ll return the favor tomorrow with my own.

P.S. I figured since I haven’t a clue as to what you look like, I’d call you daisy, since you seem to like them… a lot.

—M



<center>****</center>


Liz read his post, while she waited for his pictures to load. Damn Internet connection, why is it that she paid for high speed when the thing was anything but?

“Finally!” she grumbled out and then froze the moment the man’s face appeared on her screen.

She groaned, “Why did it have to be Mr. GQ himself?” Just her luck, she thought. She was trying to forget him, and she had until the very moment she saw his face.

She laid her head down on the desk; she couldn’t talk to him anymore. It was a mistake, and there was no point torturing herself over something she could never have.

Something she didn’t think she even wanted until that very moment.


<center>****</center>


Scrubbing his hands over his tired eyes, he walked down the long hall and checked on his son. Taking a peek inside his room, he couldn’t help but smile at his peaceful face. Maybe he was biased, but his son was adorable and damn good looking even for his age.

As he stepped out, something caught his eyes. He stifled a laugh and shook his head. He walked inside and reached for the shiny object. His finger played with the bobbing antenna and it made him think of the brunette, Liz, the waitress from the other day.

His son had taken a liking to her very quickly. The thought of that caused a tightening in Max’s chest; one he wished would subside already.

She was gone, and she wasn’t coming back at least not in the capacity that he’d wished.

That was old news, and he’d grown up a lot since then. Five years was long enough to not hold what she’d done to them against every other woman in the world.

He placed the headband back on his sons’ dresser and walked back to his bedroom. He slipped between the cool sheets and allowed sleep to take over. His last thought was of a brunette with a pretty smile, and sad eyes.


TBC…


**
Question for you guys...do you mind the colored parts? Or would you prefer bold and unbold? I just couldn't decide...so let me know...Thanks!

P.S. As I stated above I'm posting a note on Wings, so check that out as well.

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Wed Nov 01, 2006 6:54 pm

A/N - I wish I had a little more time, but this is a post and go for me, I require sleep of some kind at this point. Thank you all so much for the feedback (as well as the preference of colors and such), means so much that you are enjoying this...until next week! *waves to the new/lurker readers*

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Lurkers



Chapter Three



<center>Hanging By A Moment</center>



It was late in the afternoon that found Max Evans, standing outside the Crashdown Café the very next day.

He and a few of his workers were in the area and decided to stop. A small smile touched the corners of his lips, in thought of possibly seeing Liz again. He wasn’t sure what it was about her that made him smile, maybe it was because she was the first girl that didn’t throw herself at him.

Usually, he would go out with his son to dinner or even the movies, and women would make lurid comments that were completely inappropriate. Liz, however, seemed completely relaxed, and the way she spoke to Trevor, that had surprised him.

Women, usually pinched his cheeks and rustled his hair, but normally paid him no mind, which was Max’s main problem with women these days. They wanted to date him, but wanted no part of his son. In the beginning, when he was getting to know some of these women, that was fine. He preferred it that way; he didn’t want to bring woman after woman into his son’s life, making him confused.

And then came the downfall, sure he’d told them he had a son, but talking about having one and holding one in his arms to introduce was another story all together.

He didn’t regret it, in fact, he was glad to find out what kind of women they were so that he wouldn’t waste anymore of his and his son’s time. He wasn’t looking for a mother for his son, far from it. Max had determined long ago that he would always be enough for Trevor, but was there anything wrong with wanting a little companionship?

“What the hell is this place,” asked Rick, one of his employees. There were a total of six of them, and to be honest they weren’t looking or smelling their best. But they were hungry and they were men, so they really didn’t care.

“I know, but before you say anything just give it a chance.” Max ushered them all in through the front door, while his eyes darted around the room of their own volition.

He spotted her coming through the swinging door of the back room. Her silver antennas bobbed and her cute teal and silver uniform, was in perfect placement. What was it about her that made him feel like a teenager again? It had been such a long time that he’d actually gone somewhere specifically setting out to see a girl. But that wasn’t what he was doing here today, no, it was just lunch.

They all took a seat in a large booth against the wall. He wondered if it was her section as the guys all laughed at a joke someone had just made about the place. That drew her attention to their table, and he tried to appear nonchalant, like he’d only come in here to eat because it was the closest place to do so.

Of course it was, he told himself. Who cared that there were half a dozen deli’s on the same street, that wasn’t the point. He didn’t feel like having a sandwich.

“Max, tell me did Trev pick this place out?” He turned his attention to his friend Kyle and nodded his head in affirmation.

“I figured. Now, though I can tell at least the boy has some taste. Do you see those uniforms? They leave oh so little to the imagination,” Kyle added and then zipped his mouth when their waitress approached the table.

Was she blushing? She hoped to God she wasn’t. This was really awkward. This was KappaMan, sitting in front of her, and he had no clue as to who she was. The fact that she had that anonymity over him made it easier for her to relax.

“Good afternoon. I’m Liz and I will be your waitress. Can I get your drinks to start with?” she asked and tried to avoid all eye contact, especially with KappaMan.

As the men all called out their orders, she noticed immediately that one person in particular hadn’t.

Dare she look?

What if she did and she got that feeling again, the same one from the other day, the very same one that she’d felt last night when she’d stared at his picture for an hour?

Gathering her strength she lifted her eyes to meet his. And that feeling came back. It was slow, almost like a hum in the back of her mind, and then her palms became sweaty, and a shiver raced up her spine, and before she knew it, tiny dots of perspiration formed above her eyebrows. This was too much. This was ridiculous!

Just take the damn drink order Liz, and get the hell away from him, she argued to herself, all the while plastering a very convincing smile on her face.

“And you sir? What could I get you?”

He hadn’t noticed it before that moment, but she was pretty. Plain, but pretty. Not at all like the girls he was attracted to, yet there was just something about her that made his stomach rumble unfamiliarly. He cocked his head to the side to regard her and then instantly froze when their eyes met. They were a color of brown, he wasn’t quite sure was truly natural. The way the sunlight hit them through the glass window behind him, they appeared to be a rich cinnamon color. Warm and inviting.

He cleared his throat when someone elbowed him in the ribs. “I’ll take a cherry coke, thanks.” He offered her a quick, uncomfortable smile and watched as she walked away. He couldn’t help but notice her lean waist, and round bottom sway side to side, not to mention her trim legs. They might not have been long, but the creaminess of them, more than made up for that.

“Someone’s got a major Jones for the waitress,” Tom barked out with a teasing glint dancing in his eyes.

“Yeah, whatever. What are you guys ordering? We’re on the clock and regardless if I like you or not, I’m still your boss.” Max grumbled out trying to figure out if he would in fact order a sandwich, even though he had come there under the pretense that he hadn’t wanted one in the first place.



<center>****</center>



“Liz, is everything okay?” Mr. Harding asked a moment later, when Liz hadn’t returned from excusing herself to the back. He wondered if something happened with the gentlemen at the table she’d just taken an order from.

“Yes, Ted, everything is fine. I’m just feeling a little tired. Jeremy was up half the night and after I put him to bed I couldn’t get to sleep myself.” He’d nodded and told her to take her time and to come back when she was ready.

She thanked him and then continued to douse her face with cold water. Reaching for a towel, she pat dried her face. The mirror showed a reflection of someone who was worn out and tired, yet she had another four hours to go.

It was worth it though, she wouldn’t be doing this for the rest of her life or so that’s what she told herself everyday. She and her son would have their own place in a few years, just the two of them.

Pushing away from the sink, she straightened her back and prepared herself to face him again. As she reached the swinging backdoor, she heard the sharp cry of her son from the top of the stairs.

Spinning around quickly, she looked to see Mrs. Harding, holding a crying, fitful Jeremy in her arms. Liz’s heart broke; she hated to see him cry. She quickly closed the distance and raced up the stairs, taking him into her arms.

She cooed and rested him against her chest, rocking him gently. His thick head of dark brown hair tickled the underside of her chin, as she rubbed soothing circles over his tiny back. That seemed to soothe him enough, because a moment later he was quietly resting, with his fist in his mouth against her shoulder.

“I didn’t mean to interrupt, but he wouldn’t settle down at all.” Mrs. Harding apologized but Liz waved her off. After all Mrs. Harding was doing her the favor of watching him while she worked.

Liz moved him ever so gently from her chest, kissing his cheek before handing him over to Mrs. Harding.

“I only have a few hours left, but if he fusses again, just let me know and I’ll get someone to cover my tables.” Liz worried that she was too much of a burden on the gracious old couple.

“Nonsense Liz, besides I’m sure he just missed his mother.” The twinkle in her green eyes gave Liz a moment of pause. Did he miss her? Wasn’t he too young for that? She realized that was yet another thing she had to learn about having a three month old.

She made her way back out to the main floor and grabbed the orders that were waiting to be distributed. A sigh of nervousness escaped passed her lips as she approached his table.

Did he have to be good-looking, dirty? It wasn’t fair. Yes, of course she rolled out of bed and looked like hell, but she looked a fraction better after she’d washed her face and brushed her hair. But she couldn’t come close to being beautiful; even she could admit that to herself.

“Oh there’s our hostess with the mostess,” came one man’s comment as she reached the table. She noticed that Mr. GQ, she really needed to learn his name, kicked him under the table. Which made a small giggle pass her lips.

“Sorry,” he mumbled out narrowing his gaze at his friend across the table. Liz shrugged her shoulders and handed out the orders individually.

“Is there anything else I can get for you?” she asked trying to make a hasty retreat from the table.

“No, thank you.” Max smiled up at her and she nodded her head before turning and making her escape across the room.



<center>****</center>



Where the hell was she? They were ready to leave and for some reason he wanted to see her one last time. But after she’d placed the check on the table, she disappeared into the back room. It wasn’t as if he could just stroll back there, so he resigned himself to save it for another day.

“Are you done drooling?” came Kyle’s voice from behind him.

“Mind your business…and I wasn’t drooling,” he retorted sarcastically.

“Whatever you say boss. So we going out for drinks tonight? Mike called me this morning saying he wanted to meet up at Shirley’s around eight.”

“Sounds good. I just have to feed Trevor and then I’ll have the babysitter come over.” Kyle nodded and Max followed him out the diner.

As the door closed behind him, he couldn’t help but look one last time. She was nowhere in sight though. It was better that way; he was acting like a blundering pubescent, which he was a long way from.

Max hopped in his pickup truck and for some reason his mind wandered to the girl he’d chatted with last night. Daisy, or whatever her name really was. He wondered if she’d responded to his last message. As soon as he got home he would type up his e-mail to her, he didn’t want to be rude and leave her hanging until he got back from the bar, which would surely be later than she would be up.

He shook all thoughts of online girls, waitresses and everything else in between. They had a job that needed to get done and thankfully the weekend was upon them in two short days.



<center>****</center>



“Trev, you gotta tell me what you want to eat.” Max said to his son, who was playing on the floor right behind him. Max wanted to type out his e-mail before he left for the night, but his son was becoming increasingly relentless about what he wanted for dinner.

“I wanna eat chips!” Trevor called out as he crashed his dump truck into another. He loved the loud noises it made when they collided.

“You’re not getting chips,” Max grumbled out, that was it, he was not giving his son anything but nutritious food to try.

“Daddy, but I want chips!” Trevor’s bottom lip began to quiver and Max had to turn away, he was a goner if he didn’t.

“Trev, how about you go and get your sneakers from your room and bring them to me? I’ll take you to get some pizza. How’s that?”

“I want…”

“I know what you want little man, but you’re going to eat pizza.” He wished to God he could cook. But as terrible as it might be, his skills in the kitchen were limited, despite his mother’s attempts to teach him. He could only make a limited number of things, which were very simple. Which were usually only breakfast items. Trevor was usually really good about eating whatever Max made, but today he was being difficult.

The computer was finally done loading the CyberCafe page, he opened up his email began to type his message.

Daisy,

So I’m headed out for a bit but I wanted to make sure I held true to my promise, of returning the favor.

My ideal date… It would be something I’ve never done before…

Dinner under the stars.

There wouldn’t be any cheesy romantic music. I never did understand that.

It would be me and the person I was with, alone and baring our souls to the world, all the while sharing something that was uniquely ours.

I bet that was kind of cheesy wasn’t it? I guess so, but sometimes there isn’t any other way to put it.

The girls I’ve dated in the past were not the type to enjoy something like that at all. They wanted a fancy dinner, dancing…you know just the typical date from start to finish? But doesn’t it get boring for girls? I know for me it does, and most of my friends do not share my same sentiment. They usually want to get to the end of the predictable date, where they take the girl home…

I’m tired of predictability.

So Daisy, don’t keep me waiting too long…

—M


Max turned off the computer and helped his son with his shoes. They promptly left the house with Trevor still grumbling about not wanting pizza.



<center>****</center>



“Patricia, thank you for everything. I don’t think I say it enough but without you and Ted, I don’t know where we would be.” Liz moved around her son’s bedroom, getting things ready to bathe her son later that same evening.

“Nonsense child. We don’t have any children of our own, and when you came into the diner, during that blasted storm we knew we couldn’t turn you away. What I don’t think we do enough is tell you how special you are and how proud we are of you. We may not be your parents, but we like to think we’re special to you.”

“Of course you are! Don’t ever doubt that. You’ve given me…both of us so much. The job was enough, but to offer up this apartment to me at no cost, I can’t tell you how lucky I truly feel. You and Ted are our family.” Liz offered a bright smile and then came up to the older woman, wrapped her arms around her and held on tight.

“Now you’re going to make me cry. Let me kiss the pumpkin before I head off to bed.” Patricia spun around and lifted the squirming child in her arms, kissing him on the cheek before bidding both mother and child goodnight.

Liz stood, holding her son for a moment. She truly was lucky to have the both of them to help and support her. She wished that she could tell them the truth about her past, but she wasn’t ready. Not yet.

“You ready for your bath? Try not to wet mommy too much this time.” Liz smiled as she bounced her son gently against her chest. Everyday she learned a little more about him and what his likes and dislikes were, which was amazing to her. He was this little person that she was going to help mold into a respectable adult. She was determined that her son would not suffer through the hardships she had to.

For a moment her mind began to wander to the little boy from the diner and his father. She groaned, she would not think about him and she sure as hell would not check her messages tonight.

But he was so friendly online, and in person as well, but that was beside the point. Was there anything really wrong with talking to him online? He didn’t need to know who she was and so what if he came into the diner on occasion? She could serve him and ignore the feelings he caused in her. Which she didn’t understand either, she didn’t even know him but there was something about seeing him with his son that told her he was a good guy.

Jeremy’s tiny feet splashed in the water, and then his hands joined the party, causing water to splash on Liz’s arms and chest. She couldn’t help but smile; whenever she was around him she couldn’t contain her happiness. He was perfect in every way and she was so thankful for that.

“I told you not to splash mommy. We are going to have to work on this communication thing because obviously my way is not working at all. Probably because you can’t talk…I wonder when you will.” Her mind trailed off again allowing the thoughts of failure to set in. She didn’t even know when babies spoke, or did they? Did they walk first then talk? Or was it the other way around? She resigned herself to the fact that she really needed a person to help her out. But who? She only knew Maria and she was too far away and didn’t know a thing about children. And books hadn’t been any help thus far. All the ones she read were so contradicting in the information.

To lay the baby on the side or on his back or his stomach. Which one was right, when every book had a different opinion? And while Patricia and Ted helped as much as they could, they knew even less of children, which left her feeling inadequate.

It seemed that Mr. GQ had a good relationship with his son. She knew he wasn’t married or even dating, he’d said as much. So, why was a guy as good looking as him single with a child? She wondered what happened for him to end up in such a situation.

No, she didn’t wonder and she wouldn’t ask or even think of asking. She couldn’t because it was to her benefit that he didn’t know who she really was.

Lifting her son out of the bathwater and throwing a towel over him, she entered his small bedroom and tugged the towel around him tighter. She didn’t want him to catch a cold.

Dressing him quickly, she then fed him and rocked him to sleep.

She was exhausted but maybe after a hot shower she would feel better, and with any luck relaxed enough to pass out.



<center>****</center>



“Oh he was drooling,” came Kyle’s booming voice over the roar of the busy bar.

“Seriously?”

“No way!”

“I was not drooling! I mean seriously, I’m a man and men do not drool over anyone!” Max slammed his hand against the wooden table. Why was Kyle insisting, or rather even bringing up Liz? God, he was trying so hard to push her out of his mind, but at any girl he saw with brown hair tonight he would do a double take.

What did he think she would magically show up just because he wanted to see her and her big brown eyes, and perfect little body and…

“That’s the look I’m talking about!”

“Max, what’s going on? You got something to share with the rest of the table?” His best friend, Michael asked.

“No. I’m not sharing shit with you guys. And in case you forgot, I employ most of you, so pissing me off is not in your best interests.” He threw that threat around on a daily basis, and never made good on it. He groaned. He was a pushover for not only his son but also his employees.

“All right, back off. One day Max might just make good on that threat and I’d hate to have to hire you guys, cause you all suck!” Michael threw in a teasing wink to Kyle who looked mortified.

“Shut the hell up and drink!” Kyle threw a pretzel at Michael before chugging down the rest of his beer.

Max however, turned and surveyed the place. He convinced himself he would just find a girl to dance with, to help take his mind off of…that girl. He wouldn’t even say her name. It was better that way.

His eyes landed on a cute red head that called him over with an index finger. He smiled and placed his beer back on the table before strolling up to her.

He danced, but didn’t enjoy it. For some reason now his mind was wandering to the e-mail he’d sent earlier. Did the girl respond? He wondered if she did, what it said. God, would women he didn’t even know rule his every waking moment from now on?

Unfortunately, or fortunately he hadn’t decided yet which it were, his time was cut short by a call from the sitter. Apparently Trevor refused to go to sleep and was so cranky that he wouldn’t stop crying. Sara, the babysitter thought it would be best to call him.

“Leaving already? Or are you meeting a certain dark haired, petite waitress…Speaking of which, Mike you had to see this outfit, it was…”

“Enough! Seriously, Trev is giving the sitter a hard time. And if you talk about Liz I might just fire you.”

“Apparently someone hasn’t gotten laid in a while.” He heard Kyle’s teasing, and couldn’t help but laugh it off. Why was he suddenly defending Liz, and he really needed to stop referring to her as if he truly knew her.

Because he didn’t.

At least not yet, a tiny voice in the back of his mind said.



<center>****</center>



She paced the room for an hour. A whole damn hour but refused to sit down. She wouldn’t. Damn it, she couldn’t!

She’d taken a shower and then because it was calling to her, she turned on her computer and checked her e-mail from Maria. It was as random as ever; she was headed out for a date and would call her tomorrow.

But then…oh then she just had to log onto the CyberCafe, and saw his message, sent earlier today. She should just delete it. Not even read it; just be done with it and him.

Would it hurt to read it?

She mulled over the question before sitting down on her chair. She stuffed a pillow not only behind her, but also tucked one against her chest, she squeezed it tightly as she clicked open his message.



<center>****</center>



“Daddy, I don’t wanna sleep! I’m not sleepy!” Trevor squirmed in his father’s arms. Max had arrived over an hour ago, dismissing the sitter and tending to his rambunctious son.

“Trev, I know you don’t want to, but you have school tomorrow. And daddy has to go to work. So, how about we make a deal?” That seemed to still the child for a second.

“If you go to bed tonight and tomorrow, I promise on Saturday we can go to the diner again.”

“The one with the spaceship?” his brown eyes lit up with excitement.

“Yes that one.” Max had to laugh at his son’s enthusiasm.

“Can I have a cheeseburger?” he asked, already resting his head against his father’s shoulder. Max stood and crossed his son’s room.

“Yes, a cheeseburger, fries and a milkshake, Trev.” Max dropped a kiss on his son’s dark head and settled him on his bed.

“Okay daddy. Love you.”

“Love you too, little man.” Max kissed his son one last time after tucking him in and turning out the light.

He headed straight for his bed, but as soon as he made it to his bedroom, he paused and realized he couldn’t wait until tomorrow to see if she responded. Rolling his eyes, he pulled his shirt over his head and removed his jeans, throwing them on the bed, before heading back out to the den.



<center>****</center>



Could he get any better? He obviously wasn’t real. Maybe she had actually fallen asleep and she was stuck in this dream. She shook her head and pinched her arm, just to be sure.

“Get a grip, Liz. Just respond,” she mumbled to herself.

How did one respond to a message like the one he’d sent? Be honest. As honest as you could be, she amended to herself.

That was definitely not a response I was expecting. I have to wonder though, how does a good guy; as you seem to appear to be, not have someone special in his life already?

Not to get too personal or anything, just curious.

As far as my perfect date, I thought about it all night and a little more today as well and to be honest, I have no idea.

I’m pretty easy to please. All I require is good company. I would like someone that can make me laugh, that’d be nice. I have decided however, I wouldn’t want to go out with a guy who is going to fill my head with nonsense about my looks and things like that.

I know what I am and what I’m not, so blowing smoke up my ass (lol) is not going to help any man’s case. Know what I mean?


Oh God, she was being too honest wasn’t she? She reread her message and decided, what the hell? It wouldn’t hurt to just respond without thinking, no pretenses. Maybe, she could even learn a little more about herself through this…through him.

How was your night out? Hopefully it wasn’t too terrible, all those girls throwing themselves at you...

So since you obviously know I’m from Roswell, what about you? Where are you from? It’s only fair right?

Until next time,

Daisy


Liz couldn’t stop smiling. She wondered how he would respond. She leaned back and nearly jumped out of her chair when she heard her messenger window pop up. She’d forgotten to lower the volume.

You there?

It was Maria.

Yeah, what’s up?

Don’t what’s up with me. Spill it! I see you flirting online with this guy, this…KappaMan and then he tells you to check your inbox? As your friend who shares all her terrible date stories you owe it to me to share your story!

By the way I checked out his pictures…he’s hot! Oh and so is his friend, do you chat with him too?


Maria it’s late, can we talk about this tomorrow?

No

Maria

Liz at least answer my last question, about the friend. Do you talk to him too?


Liz rolled here eyes but gave a little laugh as she typed her response.

Okay, since you aren’t going to let me rest. I don’t know his friend, hell I don’t even know him…well I sort of do.

She didn’t know when she’d decided to tell Maria that the guy she told her about from the diner was the same guy she was talking to online, but she typed her friend the entire story and awaited her response.

It never came. Instead the phone rang in the kitchen. Liz jumped to her feet and ran before it woke up her son.

“Hello Maria,” she said in a whispered voice, walking back into the living room.

“Are you kidding me? You’re not are you? You’re serious. And this guy, this hottie is the same one you already met with the adorable son. But does he know? No, of course not, you’re too sheltered to reveal that.” Maria continued on without taking a breath, but Liz felt the need to slow her down.

“Wait, I’m not sheltered,” she defended herself weakly as she settled on the couch.

“Liz, I’ve never met you and I already know. You’re not bold enough to tell him you’re the same girl from the diner. What I don’t understand is why?” Maria sounded concerned and Liz cringed at the thought. She did not want to share her past with Maria. All she needed to know was that three months ago she had a child. The father, well Liz never wanted to think of that…ever.

“Maria, I’d rather not talk about it.” Understanding, Maria changed the subject.

“Okay, now he came in again today? Did he seem different, like maybe he knows?”

Liz shook her head, even though she knew Maria couldn’t see her. “There is no way for him to know that. I don’t even use my name. In fact,” she added with a smile, “he calls me Daisy.”

“Cute! Now, what do you know about him, other than the fact that he’s scrumptious?”

Liz blushed. Maria was so bold with her words. Liz might have thought it, but she would never voice it aloud.

Shrugging, she tried to recall any additional details about him. “I think he works in landscaping, at least he was driving a truck with a company logo on it.” As a matter of fact, she remembered the name on the side said Evans & Son Landscaping. So she was truly spying from the back room at him when he left this afternoon, that didn’t mean anything.

“He apparently is looking for a good girl. Hmm, I wonder if he liked brunettes. I think you should tell him.”

“Are you crazy?!” she hissed. “I can’t tell him, Maria. Once he knows it’s me, he’ll run for the hills and I don’t think I could handle that.”

Sighing into the phone, Maria tried to reason with a girl she’d never met but knew had more insecurities than anyone she’d ever met. “Why do you say that? You’re so pretty Liz…”

“Pretty plain, you mean.”

“No, I don’t. Look, if he can’t see how bright and beautiful you really are then no matter how good looking he is he’s not worth it.”

“Thank you for saying that.”

“That’s what I’m here for, and Liz regardless of the fact that we’ve never stood in front of each other, I will always support you no matter what you decide.” Liz couldn’t help the tiny tear that managed to escape passed her closed lid. She should just tell Maria.

Maria would never judge her.

“Mar—”

The sound of another message popping up distracted her thoughts and turned her attention to her laptop.

“What?”

“Oh God,” she groaned and sank back into the couch.

“What’s wrong?”

“It’s him, Maria. What should I do?”

“Is he sending you a message?”

She nodded, and then realized Maria couldn’t see her. “Yes, he wants to start a private chat with me.” Liz stood and paced in front of her small desk, biting down on her fingernail, she really needed to stop the nervous habit before she lost all her nails.

“I think you should go for it. I know you don’t want to tell him who you are, but there is nothing wrong with talking to him. Just get to know him, who knows where it could lead? And you better tell me about it in the morning, for now I’ll let you go.”

Liz smiled. “Thank you, Maria.”

“Anytime.”

Placing the phone down on the desk, she slowly slid the chair out and sat. She took only a moment to decide before accepting the offer of a private chat.

Would this be her greatest downfall? She feared she might fall before she even had a chance to breathe.



TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Wed Nov 08, 2006 9:38 pm

A/N I’m happy to see some new faces! And I’m happy to see that I could still surprise you guys a little…I know Liz has a son, who would have thought. Anyways, answers, will be coming within the next two parts. The secret can’t last forever now can it? And I hope you saw my short note about Max's reaction to Liz...hopefully this part explains things further for you, I say hopefully cause this part was written a few weeks ago *lol*:wink:

Thank you guys so much for the feedback, I adore hearing what you think, keeps me going. I have to give a special thanks to Lala (aka La’Shon) for her help, her quick thinking, and her never-ending support in helping with these updates. (I hope I can make your ‘little man’ live up to the expectations.)

I’m tired and I feel terrible right now, but her enthusiasm pushes me even when I feel ready to drop, as does all your feedback ;)


clueless
sprayadhesive
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Earth2Mama
Corinne_85
martine
hazz
roswell3053
mareli
max and liz believer
begonia9508
Queen Fee
omwf
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TrudyGill23
LysCat
Isabelle!
Ellie
Itzstacie
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IzzyEvans2201_PuertoRico
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Lurkers





Chapter Four


<center>Hello </center>


His knee bounced uncontrollably as he awaited her response. He could see that she was online; he had finally found the little icon that lit up letting him know that she was. He really needed to get a crash course of this site from Michael.

Was he being too forward? He hoped not, but he thought it was more convenient to have a conversation with her. When she didn’t answer for a few minutes, he thought he had just made the biggest error in judgment, but then he saw her acceptance.

He let out a shaky breath and decided since he started it, he had better say something quick, before she changed her mind.

KappaMan: Hello. I hope you don’t mind but I thought this might be not only easier but also quicker to talk.

He tapped his fingers against his mahogany desk, waiting … and waiting and then she responded.

sleeplessinroswell: Hi. No, this is fine. I was on the phone so it took me a minute.

He breathed a sigh of relief and preceded to answer the questions from the message she had sent earlier.

KappaMan: I read your message and I guess to answer your first question, the reason why I don’t have a significant other is because I haven’t found the right girl. I’ve dated, as you know but I haven’t found the one.

sleeplessinroswell: Do you think there is one? I mean, one person for you in the world?

KappaMan: I hope so. I’d like to think we all have a person out there, that we can spend the rest of our lives with. What do you think?

sleeplessinroswell: I’m not so sure about that. I think when I was a little girl, I had those notions, but I’m older and wiser to the world.

Max wasn’t sure what to think of her, and how old was she really? She obviously didn’t want anyone to know what she looked like, so he wondered if he should ask. Deciding it was probably better not to, he continued on with answering her questions.

KappaMan: On to less heavier discussions… you asked where I was from. Well, originally I’m from New Jersey. I went to college, hence the screen name, in Florida and then I moved to New Mexico to be near my parents.

sleeplessinroswell: Wow! From New Jersey…Florida to New Mexico? I have to ask, why N.M.?

He laughed at her response; it was typical but easily explained.

KappaMan: My mother loves the desert. So when my parents set out to retire, instead of picking a normal retirement location, she wanted the desert. In fact, she wanted to move to Vegas, but my father convinced her otherwise. I had actually visited most of the state, and found that Roswell was just the different pace I was looking for.

What brought you to Roswell?





<center>****</center>



What a question to be faced with. She didn’t want to think about what brought her there. She had left her life and started a new one, the only way she knew how after everything that had happened.

So now she stared at his question until it became blurry and then answered, but it would have to be a lie. She didn’t like it, but she had no choice, because if he ever found out who she really was, he would know her secret and she couldn’t let that happen.

sleeplessinroswell: I was actually only passing through, I was on my way to California but there was this terrible storm. And I had no money and no place else to go, my car died a few blocks from…

What the hell was she doing! She almost told him her car broke down not far from the Crashdown. He would know who she was immediately, damn it! This was a bad idea; she needed to end this line of questioning as soon as possible.

She continued to type out her response and reread it once just to make sure she didn’t include any damaging information.

a shopping mall and I’ve been here ever since. Tell me though, and be honest, what is a good-looking guy like you doing in Roswell? It’s not the most happening of places so what gives?

Hopefully that would draw his attention to other things. She needed to be sure that she didn’t slip up while talking to him online or at the diner, if he ever came in again. She truly didn’t want to think about the fact that she had been hoping he would stop in, if even for a few minutes. Just to take him in for another long moment, to memorize him so later that night she could dream good dreams.

Leaning back against her chair, she thought about what Maria had said. And while it was valid, she wasn’t so sure she should really get to know him, especially since nothing was ever going to come from it.

Maybe in another lifetime she would have wished it so, but not now. Not with him, maybe not with anyone. Her life was so much different than she had thought it would be. She should have met someone and fell in love, got married and then had a child.

At twenty-four her life was unlike anything she could have conjured up in her mind. Did she have regrets? Some, but circumstances made her aware that just because she wanted something to go a certain way, did not by any means mean that she was going to have it that way.

Her son was the most important person in her life, and making sure that he was happy and grew up happy was her priority. She just wasn’t so sure she was capable of it some days. Liz believed the older her son got the easier he would be to take care of, boy was she wrong.

She didn’t know the first thing…wait; she could technically ask this stranger couldn’t she? However, that would mean she would have to get him to confess that he had a son.

How could she though?

Taping her fingers lightly on the keys, she tried to figure out a way to do it. And then it hit her, he had no idea that Liz from the diner had a kid, so what harm would there be in her sharing the fact that she, Daisy, had one?

None, she concluded. And so she found her loophole into getting him talking about kids.

She would be as honest as possible, because after all it would be helping her son and in the meantime she could get to know this stranger better…from a far.

Liz didn’t let the nagging feeling that he could just as easily find out that she had a child while visiting the diner one day bother her. She didn’t allow herself to think that far in advance, for now she would just go with her plan as if it held no consequences.



<center>****</center>



How much should he share with this online stranger? He didn’t know the proper chat room etiquette for personal information. Maybe he could answer her question, but keep it vague.

KappaMan: My business brought me here.

sleeplessinroswell: You own your own business?

KappaMan: Yes.

sleeplessinroswell: Wow! That’s great. I would have never guessed that you were old enough for that.


He laughed.

KappaMan: I’ll take that as yet another compliment from you. Too bad I can’t share the same sentiments since I still don’t know what you look like.

And if that was your subtle way of asking how old I am…I’m 28. You?


sleeplessinroswell: 24

KappaMan: Okay, Daisy, 24, California bound, but Roswell stranded, what do you do for fun?


sleeplessinroswell: Not much. I have a 3 month old who keeps me pretty busy. So besides working, I look after him.

Yet another thing he found out about her. She was twenty-four, and had a three month old, but she was single. What an odd combination, he thought, and then amended to himself; she was just like him.

Single with a child, a son at that. How very interesting.

KappaMan: I can sympathize with you there completely. I myself have a five-year-old son. Most days he wears me down, I feel older than I am. He has too much energy; I wonder where I can get some.

sleeplessinroswell: Yes, if only someone could bottle it and sell it, I’d invest (lol)

KappaMan: I agree! Too bad, children are so much harder than you could even imagine. You don’t know until you’re a parent. Always worrying if you’re doing the right thing, or not.

sleeplessinroswell: That’s my biggest fear, doing everything wrong.

KappaMan: I was there, hell I still am.

sleeplessinroswell: Does it get better?

KappaMan: Sadly, no. I think maybe when he’s twenty-five, I’ll know if I messed up.

sleeplessinroswell: Are you serious?? That long? I don’t think I could wait!

KappaMan: I’m kidding, but I do know when it ends we’ll know. At least that’s what my mom says to me all the time. Just to give you an example, I always seem to let my son try out new foods at the oddest times. And he ends up always asking for those things in a room full of onlookers. I feel like the worst father in the world.
sleeplessinroswell: I know!

KappaMan: You do?

sleeplessinroswell: Well not literally, but I can imagine.

KappaMan: Oh…right. I know it can be overwhelming at times, so if you ever want to talk about it, or ask me something you can. Anyway, it seems my little native is getting restless, so I’m going to head off now.

sleeplessinroswell: Thank you, I might just take you up on that offer. I need to get some sleep anyway. Have a good night!

KappaMan: You too.




<center>****</center>



“Daddy, can I have a cheeseburger now?” Trevor asked his father from the backseat.

“Yes, when we get there little man.”

“Okay. Can we see the pretty girl too daddy?” Max had to laugh, his son was worse than he was. It had been a long time since he’d looked forward to going somewhere on a Saturday. They were on their way to the Crashdown, for lunch, and in hopes of seeing Liz.

Max had tried as hard as he could not to think about her, but it was a futile challenge. There was something about her, he couldn’t quite pinpoint it, but it was there. He had decided to kill two birds with one stone while getting his son lunch; he needed to figure out what it was about Liz that drew him in.

No one in his entire life had had that effect on him, yet she did without even trying. It was scary, yet intriguing. She wasn’t the girl that fit into his usual type; she had brown hair and brown eyes. He was more of a fiery redhead or a golden blonde. He couldn’t remember dating a brunette except maybe back in high school.

Was that it? Being a brunette? No, it had to be more than the color of her damn hair, he argued to himself as he searched the street for a parking space.

“Daddy are we there yet?” his son asked while kicking his feet against the back of the passenger’s side seat. Max was thankful he ordered the leather seats more and more everyday.

“We’re here. Just give daddy a chance to park.” Max realized that he hadn’t been there on a Saturday afternoon; it was packed. Finally he found a spot, parked and worked at getting his son out of his booster seat.

“Give me your hand,” he said reaching out for his son’s tiny hand.

“Daddy, I’m a big boy!” Trevor grumbled.

“Yeah, I know. But daddy is bigger, so give me your hand.” It was the same story everyday. Trevor wanted to be just like his father, but he hadn’t realized his father had quite a number of years on him.

“But daddy,” he grumbled.

“Trevor.”

“Can I have a milkshake?” he asked looking up at his father, when they came to a stop just inside the wooden diner doors.

“Of course.”

“Can it be blue?” he queried while looking around for the pretty girl with the shiny things on her head.

“I think we can work something out,” he answered while scanning the room for Liz. She didn’t appear to be there. Just his luck, he was trying to be spontaneous and strike up a conversation with her, but it appeared she wasn’t even working.

After being seated, Max and Trevor placed their orders much to Trevor’s protests on not wanting to get anything without the pretty girl. He had even protested the making of his milkshake, convinced no one else could make it a different color.

“But daddy, she doesn’t know how to do it!”

“I’m sorry, my son is just being a little temperamental.” The older waitress didn’t comment, only smiled.

“If I may ask, is there someone that usually takes your order?”

Max blushed, and his son’s eyes grew wide with excitement. “Yes, I think her name is Liz?” he answered as if he didn’t damn well know what her name was.

“Yes! That’s her! Can you get her for me please? I really want a milkshake.” Trevor clasped his hands together and placed them on the table pleading to Mrs. Harding.

The older woman laughed but nodded her head and excused herself. Max watched as she disappeared behind that infamous swinging back door. He wondered if maybe Liz was on break, and if so he would be pulling her away. He groaned. He hoped that wasn’t the case.



<center>****</center>



Patricia Harding, made her way up the backstairs and knocked lightly on Liz’s door. She knew Jeremy would be taking his nap and she wouldn’t want to disturb his sleep. A moment later Liz swung the door open.

“I hate to disturb you, being your day off.”

“No, please come in.” Liz stepped back to let Patricia in, but the woman raised her hand in protest.

“I wish I could, but we are busy.”

“Oh, did you need me to come and help? It’s no problem.” Liz moved into her apartment to retrieve the baby monitor. Sometimes she would take that with her, if she went down to the café for a few minutes to grab something to bring back upstairs to eat while her son napped.

“Please don’t, I just…well I’ll send Mr. Harding up, he’s only doing inventory.” Liz paused and turned to her in confusion.

“Is there something wrong?”

“Nothing like that. I just have a customer that came in, with a particular child who is asking for the waitress, the only waitress mind you, that can make him a blue milkshake.” Patricia winked and gave Liz a smile, watching, as her face grew flush.

Mrs. Harding thought it was about time someone made her blush, she was too young not to date. Having a child or not, Liz was a beautiful and smart girl. She wondered if the handsome man downstairs was single.

Did all of the air get sucked out of the room, she wondered while placing her hand against her rapidly beating heart. He was here!

She couldn’t go!

She shouldn’t!

But she wanted to more than anything. Would it really hurt to see him and the boy? In fact, she would make it a quick trip. She’d make the milkshake and run back up the stairs to the safe haven that was her living room.

That was until he contacted her on the computer.

“Liz, are you okay? If you don’t want to go, I’ll tell him you’re not here or something.” Patricia took in Liz’s dazed appearance; the poor girl looked a fright.

“No! I’m okay. Just give me a few minutes.” Liz saw Mrs. Harding out, and ran straight to the bathroom. She quickly ran a brush through her hair, and washed her face. She then searched her makeup case for some mascara or something, and then decided it would look like she was trying too hard. She didn’t even wear makeup so mascara would have looked completely out of place.

“Calm down, Liz. It’s not big deal, you’re just going to make the milkshake and come back upstairs,” she coached herself and blew out a shaky breath. Still she searched her pink bag until she found her clear lip-gloss, a little shine never heart anyone.

Taking one last look at herself, she peered down at her slipper-clad feet and realized she needed her sneakers. Slippers were not going to make the best impression.

A few minutes later, baby monitor in hand, and white sneakers on her feet she made her way down the stairs into the back room of the diner.

“I was just coming up. You don’t need to take the monitor if you don’t want.” Mr. Harding said as he smiled knowingly at Liz. She tried to hide her embarrassment; Patricia sure did have a quick tongue.

“Are you sure you don’t mind? I won’t be long at all,” she explained but Ted waved her off and told her to take her time.

When she reached the swinging door, she reared up on her tiptoes to peer out the small diamond shaped window, searching for him.

Her eyes found him easily, and she couldn’t help the small smile that formed on her lips at seeing him with his son. They were two of a kind, identical almost, as she had previously noticed, but now she watched them interact together freely.

The small boy watched his father’s movements closely, and then mimicked his father, earning him a bright smile. She could tell he loved his son, and had a good relationship with him. Which is the reason why even if she couldn’t tell him who she was in person, she could do it online. She could be friends with him never knowing who she really was and that was fine with her.

Just fine, perfect in fact. What more could she ask for?

More, her mind screamed…or maybe it was something else. She brushed off the feeling and with one deep fortifying breath; she pushed through the swinging door.



<center>****</center>



“Trev she’ll be down in a minute, relax boy.” Max couldn’t help the laugh that bubbled forth at his sons’ antics. He was standing on his seat whining about it taking too long for Liz to get there. He couldn’t help the giddy feeling he felt just by watching his son in that moment. His son was able to display the excitement he felt, while Max remained calm, cool and collected.

That was until she walked through the door, with a smile.

A smile that stopped his heart for a minute.

What the hell was that, he wondered while he tried to get his breathing to keep up with the wicked beating of his heart.

She approached the table, she looked nervous and in fact, he noticed with deep sadness that she never even made eye contact with him. Only Trevor.

“Liz!” Trevor punctuated his excitement with the clapping of his hands.

“Hi, there. I see you know my name, but I don’t know yours.”

“My name is Trevor Alexander Evans, and that’s my daddy.”

Max couldn’t help but watch her; the small movement of her hips in her dark blue jeans, the way the white t-shirt framed her delicate shoulders, and her hair; it was flowing freely not bundled up in a ponytail.

Only when both Liz and his son were staring at him did he realize he wasn’t paying attention.

“Daddy, tell her your name!” his son whispered, loudly, to him.

“Right. I’m Max, Max Evans.” He reached out his hand to her, to which she shook with another bright smile.

“Max Evans, nice to meet you. I’m Liz Parker.” The beauty had a name, a full real name and he was finally officially introduced to her.

God, she really was a beauty. Her lips looked like two ripe strawberries ready for the plucking. Her skin, he knew was flawless before, but now it looked a little flushed, making him think maybe she’d rushed down to see him.

He didn’t hope. She did not look interested at all. His shoulders slumped. Suddenly, for the first time in his life, he felt uncomfortable in his own body. No one had ever made him feel like that, but she did, with her long flowing brown hair, her bright smile, those big brown eyes…

He could go on forever pining for her, and thought better to ask her to join them. Maybe he was just reading her all wrong.

“Did you want to join us? I mean, that is if you’re not busy.” He watched her closely, she looked ready to bolt, but thank God for his son’s timing.

“Ooh can you? Please! And can you please get my blue milkshake now? Please?”

“Trevor,” Max started but she quickly sat cutting off his train of thought.

“It’s okay. I’ll go get your extra thick blue milkshake and be right back.” He watched as she smiled at Trevor and walked away.

He couldn’t help, nor hide, watching as she walked away. He wondered how tall she was, and if she’d fit perfectly against him.

There was obviously something wrong with him, he’d never reacted that strongly to a woman in his life, yet she does nothing, barely looks his way and he wanted to get to know her better.

That wasn’t normal. Yet he was defenseless to stop it, especially when she returned and sat right across from him. He had a completely unobstructed view of her, and this time he would soak her in and enjoy the view.

“Here you go.”

“Thanks!” Trevor reached for the tall glass, but Max pulled it back.

“Daddy, I want to drink it now.”

“You get a few sips now, then you get the rest when you eat something.” Max reasoned with his son, while he still had a fighting chance.

“But it’s gonna be all melted and mushy daddy,” he turned to his father and pouted.

“I thought you wanted the cheeseburger, really, really, bad?” Max ran his hand over his stomach in a circular motion, mimicking his son’s antics from that morning.

“Oh…yeah…is it done yet?” Max knew he’d won the battle but lost the war. His son might have a short attention span but it usually only lead to more questions.

“Give it a few more minutes.” Max looked to Liz for confirmation, and she made full eye contact with him for the first time and suddenly the room grew smaller, and the voices surrounding them became muted.

And then the biggest revelation hit him, like a freight train. She, Liz Parker, was anything but plain. His quick judgment didn’t do her one bit of justice.

Plain? Her? Never. It wasn’t possible. Not when he was face to face with her purity, and her flawless beauty. Her cute button nose, the tiny scar right above her left eye, the way her eyes sparkled when she spoke to his son, and be still his heart, when she looked at him they held that same glimmer.

“Yes, it won’t take much longer.”

“How come you don’t have that shiny thing on your head?” Trevor asked innocently and Max couldn’t hold back his laugh.

“I only wear it when I’m working, but today I’m not so I don’t have to wear that silly thing.” Max watched as she scrunched up that cute nose of hers, and in that instant he honestly thought he fell for her.



<center>****</center>



Was she sweating? She felt like she was. They were all eating lunch, and thankfully Trevor was keeping the conversation going. Liz knew damn well if she looked at Max once more, she would give herself away.

She knew he was good looking, drool worthy, as Maria would say, but up close, talking to him, laughing with him, it was so much more. More than she could have ever imagined.

Trevor was a doll, and she was learning so much like his father. She’d caught Max, she was glad she finally knew his name, staring at her from time to time. Was that normal? She’d have to ask Maria tomorrow.

“You really keep it in your room?” Liz asked when she heard Max mention the headband she’d given him the first time they’d come to the diner.

“Yes!” he answered, while slurping down the rest of the milkshake.

“He has to touch it every night before bed.”

“Daddy, you weren’t supposed to tell her!” Trevor mumbled out from behind his tall, nearly empty glass.

“I’m sorry, little man. But it’s true.” He smiled at her, and she melted in her seat. No one had ever had that effect on her before, ever.

“Although,” he continued, “I don’t know how okay I am with my son having a girls headband.”

“I’m sorry!” She apologized, feeling mortified that she gave a boy a headband. What he must think of her.

“No, no. It’s okay.” He seemed so sincere, and she was still an idiot. Would he think her a fool? She needed to draw the attention off of her, because the look he gave her was enough to make her heart race. How could he do that to her, with just one look? Funny thing was, it didn’t make her feel uncomfortable, at least not the way she thought it would.

“How about some dessert? Do you both like lemon?” she asked already standing.

“Yes!” They both answered with enough enthusiasm to make her giggle softly.

“I’ll be right back.” She quickly ran to the back and retrieved one of the lemon cakes she’d made earlier that day.

“Ooh daddy, that looks like grandma’s cake!” Trevor slapped his palms together and licked his lips.

“Calm down boy, you act like I don’t feed you.” Max joked lightly and she couldn’t help but smile brightly at him.

“I hope you like this one then.” She sliced the cake up and placed a piece in front of each of them on a tiny white dish.

With great satisfaction, she watched as father and son, devoured the first forkfuls of cake and look at one another and share a secret look.

“This is so yummy, Liz. Just like grandma’s but better. Right daddy?”

Max nearly choked and Liz offered him her untouched glass of water from the table.

“Thank you,” he said to her and then turned to his son. “Trev, it is better than grandma’s but we won’t tell her that.”

“Why not?”

“Because it would hurt her feelings.”

Trevor seemed to ponder that for a moment, and then he nodded his head and said, “Okay.”

Liz was surprised by Max’s response. Was her cake really better than his mother’s? She couldn’t help the stupid giddy feeling from bursting free, and she tried to hide it by shifting in her seat.

“Well, I really enjoyed my lunch. I’m glad you both stopped by, but I have to get going.” She slipped from the booth, trying to make her getaway.

Spending too much time with them wasn’t wise. It wasn’t real, and more importantly she was lying to him, pretending to not know who he was. That was wrong, and it was a hard pill to swallow.

“Maybe we could do it again?” he asked, seeming so hopeful.

“Maybe.” She excused herself shortly thereafter, feeling so much worse than she thought she would. He was a stranger. She owed him nothing.

Yet, a part of her, a part that she thought was lost forever, hoped for more. Things were completely out of her control, and she had no idea how to stop herself from drowning.

TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Sat Nov 11, 2006 11:08 am, edited 5 times in total.

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Behrsgirl77
Obsessed Roswellian
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Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 11:21 am
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Wed Nov 15, 2006 10:38 pm

A/N - It's Wednesday...new part...enjoy! Wow! Thank you for your feedback I enjoy seeing/reading your reactions to each part! You guys are amazing!

FSU/MSW-94 – Thank you again, for always listening to me ramble about everything! Yesterday was very entertaining though I have to say! Love you!

clueless – Thank you! So very happy that you adore it…hopefully the sentiments will continue!

sprayadhesive – Thanks! I’m glad you like them together.

Earth2Mama – You think little Trevor is setting up his father? Hmm…read on my dear! Thanks!

IzzyEvans2201_PuertoRico – Izzy, you kill me! No, drowning in Jason is not bad at all! Let’s see what Max has in store for Daisy, shall we? Thanks girl!

roswell3053 – I’m so very happy to hear that you like Liz and Trevor’s interaction. I find it a bit of a challenge writing a child character. He comes from my imagination, when I write him I can picture him and so I go with that! So at least it’s working! Thank you!

mareli – Hey you! Aww, you make me blush, but you already know that! That you adore Max and Trevor that much, I thank you. I am sure Max would be okay with Liz having son, but Liz’s story is yet to be told…you get a tiny bit of Max’s in this part…so read on my friend. And enjoy! *MUAH*

begonia9508 – hahaha! I do think Max wants a headband for himself to go to sleep with!! Thank you.

sylvia37 – I’m happy that you say my stories are fun to read…cause everyone yours make us cry! Haha! You know I love it though! Yes, I will reveal Liz’s background as well as Max’s within the next two parts…so it won’t be that long! Thank you!

max and liz believer – Thank you, you are too kind. I agree though…Liz may not think she wants more…but she does. Who wouldn’t?

Crusty Nut – I give a very big wave to you. One for checking out the story, and two for your feedback. Your explanation of fate made perfect sense and was exactly what I meant by that line. That has always been my take on fate, as you can see I put a lot of myself into the story. Thank you again, and I hope you continue to enjoy.

Ancient One – I believe I sent you an e-mail about The Promise, I hope you got it! And thank you, you know how to make this young girl blush with your kind words. Enjoy!

LairaBehr4 – Once again…drowning in JB isn’t bad at all…if only! Thanks girl!

martine – I’m sure Trevor can do a little something…I’m glad you like his interaction with Liz. And do I think their feelings will get stronger, of course! When…well I can’t tell you! Thank you!

Heavenli24 – Liz is warming up…but maybe she needs a fire lit under her ass? What do you think (lol)! Thank you!

frenchkiss70 – Tiph, Liz does need some convincing…but I think Max has the right qualifications…and if not…he can throw Trevor into the mix! Thank you!

omwf
– Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it and them!

candycane14 – Aww I wish I could hug him too, but alas he’s not real. And Max well yeah he’s getting a reality check with Liz isn’t he? She’s not just falling at his feet…ah poor baby! Thank you!

Queen Fee – I know you want Liz’s past…you’ll get it really, really soon! Thank you!

jamy21 – Thanks! And the infamous question will be answered. I’m not holding it out on purpose, it’s just not time to tell it yet that’s all.

LegalAlien – Thank you!! More is here cause it’s Wednesday!

hazz – Aww thank you!

Isabelle! – Thank you…hope you keep on enjoying it!

Mariael311 – Are you reading my notes or something? I swear! Thanks girl! Love ya!

NorafanofMaxandLiz – Nora, thank you. Yes, I wanted to do the online thing for a while now, but I couldn’t find the right plot that fit it the way I wanted. And then one day driving home from work, it hit me. So I sat and wrote this. I don’t know how Liz resists either…with Max alone that would be enough, but throw Trevor in there and damn!

Erina – Thank you! Glad you like him!

Dreamer06 – Hiding? Is Liz hiding something…other than her true identity? Ha! We’ll see how this goes for her. Thank you!

Alien614 – Thank you! I’m glad you think so. Enjoy!

BehrObsession – Nice to see you here and I’m happy to see you like thus far. More information to follow soon. Thank you.

Lurkers – If there are any…I hope you enjoy as well. Thank you for reading.




Chapter Five


<center>She’s Everything</center>


“Would you give me a damn minute,” Michael grumbled out at the sound of the doorbell. There was only one person that would dare come to his door at this hour. He stumbled through his dark living room and a minute later yanked open the front door.

“This better be good,” he said as he leaned against the wooden doorframe, arms crossed and a knowing smirk on his face. Max had been his friend since he was seven. Which meant that he knew if Max came to him in the middle of the night, it was because of a girl.

“I need your help.” Michael pushed away from the threshold and waved his best friend inside.

“You need a drink?” he asked, shuffling over to the couch, switching on the lamp before plopping down to take a seat.

“Nah, I need to think clearly for this.” Max said, looking more serious than Michael had seen him in years. The last time Max came to him with a similar appearance, was when he’d told him about Cassie’s condition.

“All right, don’t keep me in deep suspense. You know I can’t handle that shit,” he quipped lightly, which to his dismay did not change his friends’ demeanor whatsoever. In fact, he simply took a seat next to him with little expression.

“I met someone.” Ah ha! He knew he was right; it was a girl.

“Tell Big G what’s going on.” Michael linked his hands behind his head, cropped his bare feet up on the coffee table. This would take a while.

“I need serious Michael right now.” Max turned and eyed his friend closely, when he saw the change on Michael’s face, he knew he could continue.

“I don’t know how to explain it, except that it doesn’t make any sense, and I can’t stop it.”

“Max, it’s two in the morning…speaking of which where the hell is Trev?”

“He’s with my parents. They’re out of town until Thanksgiving, so they wanted to spend this weekend with him. Anyway, that’s not the problem, so can you try and focus? I know I’m not as hot as your last girlfriend, but try a little, okay?” Max stamped his retort by leaning back heavily on the couch next to his friend.

“I’m listening, but so far, you haven’t said anything.”

“Right, so I met this girl.”

“The one Kyle was busting you about?”

“Yes, try not to interrupt because this could take all night.”

“Sure. Continue.”

“Today, Trev and I went into the diner for lunch and she came down because Trev was convinced she was the only one that could make him a blue milkshake.”

“They have different colored ones?”

“Focus.” Max ground out.

“My mouth is shut and my ears are open. Speak to me.”

Max couldn’t help but laugh at his friend.

“So she sat with us, and had lunch. She ordered a salad with chicken and, she asked for the dressing on the side--.”

“I don’t mean to interrupt, but is there a point in you telling me what the girl ate? And does said girl have a name? Because I’m assuming her name is not, she.”

Max relaxed a bit, realizing how ridiculous he was acting. This was Michael; he’d known him as long as he could remember. Michael was a year old than he but they went to the same school and even the same college. For all intents and purposes, Michael was his brother.

“Her name is Liz. Michael, you know I’m not one to lose my head when it comes to a girl, but I honestly think she’s the one.” Max paused, and noticed that Michael was paying attention and looking extremely serious, so he continued.

“I don’t know her that well, in fact at first I thought she was pretty. Just your average pretty girl, but up close and seeing her smile, she just blew me away.” Max couldn’t help thinking of Liz again, wanting to see and talk to her again. He wasn’t sure why out of the girls he’d met in the years in passing, that she would come from nowhere and have such a profound affect on him.

“So you saw her, she spoke and you fell in love.” Michael joked. While he knew that Max never overreacted to any girl, this couldn’t be that serious, he hardly knew the girl.

“I’m not in love with her,” he quickly defended himself. He knew how crazy he sounded but maybe if he explained himself a little better, Michael might understand where he was coming from.

“What makes her so special that you had to come to me in the middle of night for?”

“Trevor.” It came down to that, his son was the most important person in his life; he would do anything for him. However, while in search of a woman to not only warm his bed but his life, he needed someone that respected the fact that he was a father first and foremost.

“Trevor? I don’t get it.” Michael leaned up and placed his elbows on his knees, listening closely. If Max was including his son in the conversation, then it was more than just a fleeting feeling; Michael had no doubt of this.

“Like I said, I saw her, thought she as plain, pretty…whatever the point is. She spoke to Trevor, acknowledged the fact that he was my son, and that he was at the table. Most women just say how cute his is, and move on with their seduction. Hell half the time she didn’t even look at me, but God, when she did, I felt my heart speed up, my palms got sweaty. I felt like I was seventeen again and it’s been a long time since I’ve felt that way. She smiles and I feel like I can’t breath, she looks at me and I forget how to form a sentence. It’s insane but it makes perfect sense to me. It just seems so…so…” He fought for the words until Michael completed his thought.

“Right.”

“Yes! I know I sound like a sorry ass sap, but it’s true. Of course while I feel all these emotions, she probably feels nothing.” He grumbled as he stood and paced the length of his friend’s living room.

“You say she barely looked at you?” Max nodded.

“But when she did, did she seem interested?”

“I think so.” Since when did Max only guess what a woman was thinking, Michael wondered. Max was as confident as a guy could come, in some situations more so than himself.

Michael ran through all the information and stood with a smile of satisfaction to face his friend a few minutes later.

“What?” Max asked sounding hopeful that Michael had come to a conclusion. And hopefully, it wasn’t that he was crazy, because he himself had already contemplated that as an answer.

“Liz ate a salad, didn’t she?” Again Max nodded and then it hit him like a ton of bricks.

“She ate a salad!” he smiled and hi-fived his best friend.

“That’s right! The first rule girls have, if you like a guy you don’t pig out, you order a dainty salad so he doesn’t think you’re a big eater. She might have seemed like she was together, but inside she was probably a nervous wreck. Because we know damn well if a girl orders a burger or anything other than a salad, before you go out on your third date, she is not interested.” Michael crossed his arms in satisfaction. Max and Michael had tested that theory over the course of two years, and it held up in most instances.

It wasn’t a science but it was pretty damn close, and being the men they were, being close was good enough for them to celebrate over.

“So when do I get to meet her?”

“After I ask her out.” Max replied taking a seat back on the couch. Now that things were settled, he could maybe get some sleep…maybe.

He’d never had an instance where he couldn’t read a girl, at least not if she was attracted to him or not, but Liz was different. That was another thing that tempted him about her. She made him feel things he wasn’t used to. Made him feel insecure and that was completely foreign to him. He knew it didn’t sit well with him, but he didn’t think any further into it than that.

“When are you asking her out? And do you even know if she’s available?” Good question, it wasn’t like he could’ve asked her during lunch with his son sitting right there.

“No, I don’t. But I guess I’ll find out when I ask her right?” Max smiled; feeling so much more relaxed than when he’d arrived.

“Exactly, besides, if she is, he’s got nothing on you. She’d be a fool to pass you up.” Michael knew Max was aware that he wasn’t complimenting him on his looks, that went without question and Max didn’t need Michael to reinforce that. However, Max did need someone to reinforce the fact that he had a lot to offer someone, and just because he couldn’t help Cassie, didn’t make him a failure. Sometime, Michael wondered if Max blamed himself for her demise.

“Thanks.”

Max departed a few minutes later, after getting caught up in the news about Michael’s latest fling. Max wondered when Michael would settle down, after all Michael was a self-proclaimed bachelor for life. One day, he thought there would be a woman to knock him off his feet, and Max wanted front row seats for that one.



<center>****</center>



KappaMan: I’ve met someone.

Liz stared at the screen, not daring to blink, not daring to breath, and her heart sinking involuntarily into her stomach. Why had she allowed herself to believe this thing with him online would have lasted? She’d known better, but she still played with fate and came out the fool.

After putting Jeremy to bed earlier that night, he’d woken up crying and she’d been trying to get him back to sleep ever since. Seeing as she wasn’t going to get much rest, she powered up her laptop and signed on to read any new messages Maria might have sent her. Instead almost instantly to signing onto the CyberCafe, Max had sent her an invitation to a private chat.

She couldn’t help the giddy feeling she had at seeing him on so late. It was nearly three in the morning nevertheless she was pleasantly surprised. That was until she received his very first message.

No hello.

No how are you.

Just, ‘I’ve met someone’.

She didn’t know why there was a stinging in the back of her eyes, or why she felt sick to her stomach. There was no good reason why she should even have a reaction to him. Except maybe the fact that he was so nice, and had what seemed to be a really great personality, he was great with his son, and so very good looking.

Putting all of that aside, there was no reason she should even be thinking about him. Nor should she have thought all day, since they’d had lunch, about him. No, not one good reason at all!

What could she say? He didn’t know how she was; she was just this person he talked to occasionally online. So she responded, trying to remove herself from the situation, trying to be happy for him, sort of.

sleeplessinroswell: That’s great! Tell me about it.

KappaMan: You sure you’re not too tired? I don’t want to keep you up if you were only going to be online for a minute or so…

sleeplessinroswell: No, I’m good. My son has decided he’s had enough sleep for the moment so…I’m all ears.

KappaMan: I just came from seeing her a few hours ago, after which I drove my son to my parents house and then drove around for hours until I ended up at my best friends house. I feel better now that I talked to him, but I wanted your opinion.


He wanted her opinion. God, she hoped this torture didn’t last long.

sleeplessinroswell: Well here I am.

KappaMan: Have you ever heard of the Crashdown? It’s an alien themed diner on Main Street.


Suddenly, it seemed that all the air had been sucked out from the room and she struggled to pull air into her lungs. She turned and looked down at her son, who appeared to be dozing off finally, and thought she must be more tired than she thought. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath and looked at the screen once again.

Nope, the question was still there. Of course she knew the damn place; it was where she worked! He couldn’t be…No…it had to be someone else. Maybe after she went back upstairs he met someone that came in. That had to be it, because it surely couldn’t be…No…She couldn’t even think it.

sleeplessinroswell: Yes, I know of the place. I rarely go there but so you met her there?

KappaMan: Exactly. It’s not the first time I’ve seen her. In fact, she’s waited on my son and I as well as a few of my employees.


Liz read…and re-read his last message.

“This is bad,” she muttered.

“This is really bad,” she said pushing her chair away from the desk.

“Not only is this bad, but it can’t be possible. This was a joke, or…or…I have no idea but he can’t be serious!” She stood and paced the room. Biting every available fingernail she had left on her hand. Max was interested in her? She had nothing to offer a man like him. Nothing, in fact, she didn’t want to offer anything to him.

Her little charade was out of control and she didn’t know how to fix it. How she wished Maria as there to fix it. Maria would do so much better in this situation. Quickly she turned and eyed the clock, it was late even in Jersey and Maria had work.

Maybe she could just sign off, and then never go back online…ever! Or she could sign off and then explain she got kicked off, after she spoke to Maria. That was a good idea, it was, and she was about to close out the screen, but then his next message popped up.

KappaMan: Do you think I’m crazy?

Why would he think he was crazy? She should have let the question hang there, out in cyberspace, but she couldn’t. A part of her was curious to know him better. As wrong as it was, she could continue the façade for tonight, and after that, she would say goodbye to him forever.

sleeplessinroswell: Why would you think you’re crazy? Now, you say she waited on you, so she’s a waitress there. What happened?

KappaMan: Remember those good girls we were talking about? She’s one of them.

sleeplessinroswell: Are you sure? How do you know?

KappaMan: If you saw her you’d know. She has this perfect smile, and she’s polite and she talks to my son. I mean really talks to him! Acknowledges that he’s a person too, not just an inconvenience.

sleeplessinroswell: And that’s important.

KappaMan: Yes, it’s the most important. But putting all that to the side for a minute. She’s unlike anyone I’ve ever met. From far away, I thought she was pretty, but just plain, nothing special about her. I mean I usually see her in a teal green alien uniform and silver bobbing antennas, but today I saw her in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt…she literally blew me away. Her hair was hanging loose over her shoulders, and I realized for the first time, she was beautiful.


Her heart was pounding so hard against her chest, she wasn’t sure if she was breathing anymore. He was saying things about her that no one, ever said about her, Liz Parker.

She decided not to focus to hard on how he made her feel. It wasn’t right, and it shouldn’t affect her. But God help her, it did.

sleeplessinroswell: Wow! You got that much from her in that short amount of time?

KappaMan: I know! That’s why I asked if you thought I was crazy. Does it make any sense? Maybe I’m just thinking irrationally.

sleeplessinroswell: If that’s how you really feel, who am I to rebuke? So now what?

KappaMan: Well…I’m have to figure out a way to ask her out. She’s not just your average girl. Normally I would just stroll up to the girl and ask her, but she’s different. She’s almost unapproachable.

sleeplessinroswell: Unapproachable? How so?

KappaMan: I wish I could explain it better, but without sounding like the guy that I am…I’ll try. She smiles with ease; there isn’t anything fake about it. She knows how to hide her emotions really well, more than anyone I’ve ever come across, which is good and bad at the same time. Like I said I usually go up ask a girl out, she says yes and the rest is history, but I feel like maybe there is something about her that wants to be invisible to the world. Following me?


Following him? Of course she was, he was describing her perfectly. Damn him! Was she that transparent? Unfortunately her curiosity had gotten the better of her and she wanted to see how much more he could read from her.

sleeplessinroswell: Yes. So you say you think she’s trying to be invisible? Does she act skittish or something?

KappaMan: Not at all. Like I said, she’s not fake. I feel like everything she says and does is genuine. But when I first met her, that very first day, I watched her from a far. She was talking to someone, and while she had a smile on her face, there was something else going on in her head. I could see it in her eyes, the way she held her body. Women give off signals, well what I consider signals. It’s almost as if she doesn’t want anyone to see her, really see her. And that’s her privacy and I respect that, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to get through that.

sleeplessinroswell: A sexy guy like yourself is a afwaid of the little waitress? (lol)

KappaMan: Oh now you’re a comedian. Go figure! But yeah, I guess I am. And that’s really strange because well hell I don’t know. So do you have any suggestions about my approach?


Was this man serious? Liz couldn’t even think logically anymore. He’d lost her at his explanation of signals. He could not under any circumstances ask her out. She had to deter him anyway possible…if only she had more experience with men.

sleeplessinroswell: Do you think she’s interested? I mean, is she single?

KappaMan: All valid questions, for which I don’t have an answer for. But I guess I’ll find out when I ask her out right?

sleeplessinroswell: Yeah…So let’s say you go to her and ask her out and she declines. What then?

KappaMan: I’m a very persuasive and determined man. So you think I should just do it tomorrow?

sleeplessinroswell: Tomorrow?

KappaMan: Or rather, later today, since it’s almost four! Damn, I really need to get some sleep. I’m glad you were online, Daisy.

sleeplessinroswell: Yeah…me too. Have a good night.

KappaMan: By the way…my name is Max. I figured since I spilled my guts to you, you at least deserve a real name.

sleeplessinroswell: Elle.

KappaMan: Elle, it’s finally nice to know your name. Although I am a little partial to Daisy.

sleeplessinroswell: Me too. Night Max.


Fighting back the sudden tears that gathered in her eyes, she saved their chat to send to Maria. Liz signed off, closed her laptop, lifted her son from his playpen and carried him to the bedroom.

He was fast asleep and she placed a kiss on his dark head of hair and hugged him close. It was only then the tears streamed steadily down her face. She hated it when she thought about it, thought about how he came to her, but she couldn’t regret it. But Max was causing all these emotions to rise to the surface, feelings she’d never had to deal with.

He was nice, really nice and sweet, so unlike anyone she’d ever encountered. She had no idea what to do, but she knew that when he asked her out, she had to decline. No matter how persuasive he was; she would fight the feelings she had no right to feel.

Sleep was a long time coming for her.



<center>****</center>


“Daddy, grandpa let me go fishing with him!” came his son’s excited voice over the phone. Max wasn’t quite awake yet, but he wanted to talk to his son before he left to see Liz. It was already eleven and he hoped she was working the afternoon shift, in lieu of the morning. He had to drag himself into the shower after his alarm went off, and even then it took three cups of very strong coffee for him to crack his eyes open completely.

“Yeah? That sounds like fun, did you catch any fish?” Max smiled into the phone. His father had taken him fishing when he was child; hell they still went fishing when they both had free time. He enjoyed it and hoped his son did as well.

“I didn’t, but grandpa said we could go again and he was sure I would catch one if you came with us daddy. Will you come?” he sounded so hopeful, Max couldn’t help but laugh a little. If only his son knew just what Max would do for him.

“Of course! Maybe for Thanksgiving we can go. Now I have to head out for a little bit…”

“Are you gonna see the pretty girl daddy…oh uhm…what’s her name? Liz! Yeah daddy are you gonna see Liz again?” Max rolled his eyes; the boy was reading this mind already.

“Maybe. If I do I’ll tell her you said hi, okay?”

“Okay but daddy you should let her make you a milkshake, she makes them really good!” he could almost hear his son lick his lips and shook his head knowingly.

“We’ll see little man. I love you, and I’ll be there to pick you up a little later.”

“Love you too daddy! And don’t forget to tell Liz I said hi! Okay? You won’t forget will you?”

“No, Trev, daddy won’t forget.” How the hell could he? It was futile; he couldn’t get Liz off the brain.

After hanging up with his son, he got dressed and made his way to the Crashdown, in hopes of things working out in his favor today.


<center>****</center>


“You realize you’re playing a very dangerous game right?” came Maria’s concerned voice that morning. Liz had sent her a copy of the chat she’d had with Max earlier that morning and Maria had called her immediately after reading it.

“I know! But what am I supposed to do now?”

“Liz, he’s going to ask you out. You’re just going to turn him down?” she asked, knowing that based on what she’d read, Max wanted to get to know her better, but Maria couldn’t understand Liz’s apprehension.

“Of course I am! I can’t go out with him,” Liz hissed into the phone. She needed to go downstairs for her shift but couldn’t until she discussed this with Maria first.

“Why?”

“Don’t you get it? I can’t because well you saw him and you’ve seen me.”

“And I’ve already told you, you’re beautiful and he thinks so as well, so what gives?”

“It’s complicated.”

“That’s bullshit. I know there’s something you’re not telling me. Because Liz, this guy seems really nice and he seems to really like you, and so I see no reason why not to give him a chance.” If only she could tell Maria, but not yet. Maria was as close to a best friend as she had, so why couldn’t she share that one part of her life with her?

Fear.

That was the root of it all. She was scared of Maria’s reaction, and what if she took pity on her? Liz could handle a lot of things, but pity did not sit well with her at all.

“Maria, please just leave it alone.”

Maria was willing to back down on a lot of things because of Liz, because of her personality. She was very private and Maria respected it, but she also gave her opinion even when it wasn’t welcomed.

“Sweetie, it’s only complicated because you’re making it. Go out with him Liz. See how it goes. For all you know you may not even like him and then it will be over before it starts and you’ll have nothing to worry about.”

Liz saw the logic, but also knew that just by talking to Max she liked him and just by their brief meetings she knew she liked his personality as well. This was a disaster.

“Oh and Liz…have you met his friend yet?” Maria couldn’t help it. So the guy lived in Roswell, he was still a damn fine specimen. It wouldn’t hurt to talk to him at all, if only Liz would get off her butt and find out some information for her. Was it too much to ask, she thought with a wicked smile.

“No, I haven’t Maria. Sorry.”

“I guess I’ll just have to push my surprise up.”

“Surprise? What surprise?” Maria heard Liz’s voice perk up, just what she was trying to accomplish.

“I’m coming to visit you in grand ole Roswell New Mexico!”

“Oh my God! Really? When!” Both girls laughed into the phone.

“I was aiming for Thanksgiving, but I didn’t want to impose.” Maria knew that she and Liz hadn’t met, but they talked almost daily and she thought it was about time they spoke face to face.

“You could never do that. Okay, so, Thanksgiving in is two weeks, but don’t you want to spend it with your family?” As much as Liz wanted to meet Maria, she didn’t want Maria rushing out to see her because of this Max situation.

“Nah, they see me enough, besides I’m going there for Christmas, that’s enough. Too much of my family makes a person crazy.”

Liz laughed thinking it might be the other way around. Too much Maria…would make anyone a little bit crazy.

“Oh Liz, I gotta go. I’ll call you tomorrow! You better accept his offer or when I get there I will personally see to it that you go on a date with him!”

“No promises.” Liz offered softly. But Maria just grunted and sighed but then finally hung up.

Liz turned and placed the phone back in its cradle, then checked herself in the mirror one last time. A deep breath later, she was out the door and headed down the backstairs to start her shift.



TBC…

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Sat Nov 25, 2006 1:04 pm

A/N - I'm back! I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving! Even if you don't celebrate, I hope you are having a great weekend.

Now, I have to just put a tiny little note here...I believe at the beginning of this I stated that this story would only be 10 parts...and so as I now post Chapter Six, you have to wonder, Tanya, how can it end in 4? Truth is, the story is going to be longer than I originally planned, how long? I have no idea at this point. I know what the ending is, but writing to get there may take me a little bit. Updates however will continue to be weekly.

Thanks!

Feedback...as per usual makes me smile and laugh. I know you guys are fustrated with Liz...but I do have a reason and without it I wouldn't have much of a story to tell.


FSU/MSW-94
IzzyEvans2201_PuertoRico
sprayadhesive
Dreamer06
Alien614
roswell3053
martine
hazz
jamy21
sylvia37
begonia9508
frenchkiss70
Queen Fee
LegalAlien
BehrObsession
Earth2Mama
candycane14
clueless
mareli
Stars at night10
omwf
anonymousarfan
Mariael311
Lurkers

Hope you enjoy!



Chapter Six


<center>One Night</center>



He was actually nervous, really nervous. Max couldn’t remember the last time he was in such a state.

“Maybe in high school,” he muttered to himself, as he pulled into a parking space across the street from the diner.

He’d driven around the block three times before gathering enough courage to park and step out onto the street. Walking around, he leaned against the hood of his truck and welcomed the cool breeze that blew over him a minute later.

Was she inside already? If she wasn’t he didn’t have a backup plan, in fact the only thing he could do was ask someone if she would be working today. If she weren’t, then he would have to save his courage for another day.

The thought of that depressed him more than he wanted to acknowledge. What the hell was wrong with him? He wasn’t normally so ass over head for women. It had been a long time since he’d had any deep feelings, yet with Liz, it almost felt like he was falling in love with her, but he didn’t know her.

“Get a grip Evans,” he mumbled to himself, jamming his hands into his dark blue denim jacket as he pushed off the car, heading towards the front doors of the Café.

Hesitating just a moment, he reached for the door handle, pulled it open and stepped over the threshold, his eyes immediately scanning the room for her.

Max couldn’t, didn’t want to, hide the smile that formed on his lips at the sight of her. She had to be the cutest thing he’d ever seen, the uniform made her appear young, really young. How old was she? He didn’t know, but what if she was too young for him?
He tried not to let that deter him; she had to at least be twenty-two or so.

Max tried not to let that cloud his mind, instead he was directed to a table but had to stop the waitress before he even took three steps. Liz was not covering the section she was directing him to, that would not work.

“Ah, do you think I could get a seat in that section over there?” he pointed to where Liz was currently standing, her back to him.

“Oh, well let me check with Liz. I don’t know when her break is.” Max nodded and waited patiently, back at the front of the diner.

He watched as the waitress that was helping him spoke to Liz, and then his heart began to thump heavily in his chest. Her brown eyes met his, and she gave a small smile.

That was all it took, his esteem jumped up a few notches, and without being instructed he strolled over to her.

“Hi stranger,” he whispered in her ear, as she showed him to the nearest table in her section.

“Hi Max.” She remembered his name, that had to mean something, didn’t it?

“Busy today?” he asked, as he browsed the menu. He wasn’t even hungry, but he didn’t want to seem too anxious.

“Yeah, that’s the usual, but that just makes my day go quicker,” she said while tapping her pen against the tabletop. She appeared nervous to him. Good, at least he wasn’t the only one, although now that he was face to face with her, he felt substantially calmer.

Being around her did that to him, he realized. Yes, he acted like a pubescent teenager fumbling with the right words to say, but once she began to speak, everything melted away.

It was just him and her.

“Do you work everyday?”

“No, I have a day off here and there, but the money is good and the tips are even better.” Max watched her closely; she was fidgeting a little too much. It was more than nerves; he felt that immediately when she wouldn’t make eye contact with him.

That would definitely put a damper on his plans to ask her out. Funny how she seemed completely at ease with him when he was with Trevor. Maybe he unsettled her, but not in a good way, the way she did him.

“I can understand that. I’ll just have a Galaxy Sub and a…”

“Cherry coke,” she finished for him with a slight shake of her head and hint of a smile on her lips.

His eyes widened in surprise; not only did she remember his name, but also his drink order.

Now that had to mean something.

What if she was just a very efficient waitress? What if it was all a coincidence and what if…ah hell, he just needed to ask her out already. He would drive himself mad with ridiculous questions.

Those damn antennas were distracting, he wanted to pull them from her head, drop them to the floor and cover those rosy lips of hers with his own. Suddenly, Max felt the need to shift in his seat, before he embarrassed the hell out of himself.

“I’ll be right back with your drink.” Max watched as she walked away, this was his opportunity; he needed to cease the moment and approach her before she got too busy.

Before he could think twice, he slid out from his seat and walked right up behind her.


<center>****</center>


Liz had a hell of a time getting the soda into the cup. It was turning out to be a disaster before anything even happened. Why did she remember his name, and his drink preference? She was just leading him on, wasn’t she?

Hell, she had no idea. She’d never been in a situation where she had to second-guess her actions. Truth be told, Maria’s words were ringing in her ears the moment she saw him. She couldn’t help it though; she had to smile at him. He was the best looking guy she’d ever met, and his eyes always seemed to dance over her. It made her feel special, something she’d only felt when she looked into her son’s eyes.

Max had an altogether different affect on her senses though than her son. He made her smile more, made her not so self-conscience and damn it, he made her want to forget. In fact, he made it so very simple to forget how she ended up a waitress in an alien themed diner, smack in the middle of Roswell, New Mexico, with a three month old and no family to speak of.

Liz was so consumed by her wayward thoughts, that she didn’t realize Max was standing behind her, until she turned around with his drink and screamed when she faced him.

“Oh God! I’m sorry, Liz. I didn’t mean to scare you,” he rushed out, taking the cup from her hands, and placing it on the counter beside him.

Liz placed her hands against her chest and tried to calm her nerves. She hadn’t expected anyone to be behind her let alone Max. What was he doing behind the counter with her?

Oh God…oh…this was not happening now! He couldn’t ask her out, she had to walk away before he even had the chance.

“No, it’s okay. I just scare easily…I guess. Uhm…I was coming with your drink order, did you change your mind about something?” she queried, skirting around him quickly and picking up his drink on her way.

Max followed her; she could tell immediately, in fact how was it that she knew precisely when he was looking at her? It was as if the tiny hairs at the back of her neck, just knew even before she registered it in her brain.

He moved around her to take his seat and she was gifted with his masculine scent. It was a mixture of soap, light scented cologne and another scent that was altogether Max Evans alone.

She was already familiar with his scent, what the hell was wrong with her?

“Liz do you have a minute?” he asked, breaking her from her reverie and she sighed. This was it, he was going to ask her out and she was going to turn him down.

Liz nodded and took a seat across from him. She placed her hands in her lap and forced herself to make eye contact with him.

“Liz! Oh my God! Liz! It’s me!” came an extremely loud voice from the entrance of the room.

Liz’s head snapped up to follow the voice and immediately a look of both surprise and happiness crossed her face. She immediately leaped from her seat and ran to the petite blond standing with her arms open in greeting.

“Maria! I can’t believe you’re here! You weren’t supposed to be here for two weeks!” Liz hugged the girl, who had easily become her best friend, with such enthusiasm.

Stepping back she took a moment to survey Maria. She had long blond hair that cascaded in golden waves around her shoulders ending right above her elbows. She wore; brown colored sunglasses, a pair of black jeans and a white tank top with an animal print jacket. She was the complete opposite of Liz herself.

“Are you surprised?”

“Yes, very! I’m so happy you’re here!” Liz hugged the girl once more before pulling away. They were making spectacles of themselves. In addition to which, she just ran out on Max. Did she really have to go back? She could just excuse herself with her company and leave.

But she felt guilty.

Really guilty. Especially since she knew why he was here today. As easy as it would have been to just run off, she couldn’t. She had to listen to his offer, decline with mild sadness and make Maria take her mind off of it.

Liz reached for her friend’s bags, but was stopped the moment she bent over, by a hand on her shoulder and a whisper in her ear, “I’ll get those for you.”

It was Max. She knew his voice, knew his scent. Damn it she was trying to forget him, yet there he was hoisting all of Maria’s bags in his hands. He stood, with great ease she noticed, although he was holding five bags, and raised an eyebrow in question.

“Oh, sorry. Could you just bring them in the back room?” He nodded and then proceeded towards the swinging back door. Liz went to follow but was tugged back by the arm.

“Liz, is that him?” Maria hissed out.

“Yes, that’s him live and in the flesh.”

“And what yummy flesh he has! Did he ask you out yet?” Maria asked as Liz tugged her towards the back room. She didn’t want Max finding Mrs. Harding with Jeremy, which would be really difficult to explain.

“No, right before you came in he was about to,” she explained offhandedly. Max already made it through the swinging door and she picked up her pace.

“Damn! I have to tell you something Liz, about myself.” Liz stopped right before pushing through the door.

“What?” she turned to look up at her friend. It was only then, did Liz realize that while Maria wasn’t tall, she was unfortunately taller than herself.

“I have the worst kind of timing!” Maria laughed throwing an arm around her friends shoulder and pushing through the tacky teal door.

Liz couldn’t help but laugh, but that laugh died in her throat the moment she saw Max bent over, placing the bags next to the foot of the steps.

“You cannot say no to that!” Maria whispered in her ear and then gave her a little push. Maria turned and noticed a bathroom off to the side, now would be a good time for her to get lost.

“Are these okay here?” he asked, but she still hadn’t located her tongue to speak. He didn’t even break a sweat, but his arms were crossed in front of his chest and he looked completely and utterly…sexy.

That was a shock to her system; she never found guys sexy…did she? Now was not the time to analyze her feelings, no, right now she had to get Max out of there.

“Yes, that’s perfect. Thank you. You didn’t have to but…you know…” she shrugged and moved closer to him, deciding it was best to get it over with.

“You’re welcome. So, I take it you were pleasantly surprised by your friends visit?” he asked as he uncrossed his arms and leaned against the banister to his left.

“Yes! I’m sorry; I’ll introduce you in a minute. Maria was supposed to be here in two weeks for Thanksgiving, but now she’s here. It’s actually the first time we’ve met…” Great, she’d just realized she’d said too much. He would now wonder why, if Maria was her friend, was it the first time they’d met. She would have to say she met her on the Internet and would have to hope that he didn’t put two and two together.

“Really?” he laughed. “The first time? I’ll have to ask you how that happened another time. Right now, I wanted to ask you if you were busy tonight.”

“Tonight?” He nodded.

“Uhm, well Maria is here and…” Hopefully he would understand and not make this harder than it already was on her.

“Nonsense! I will do just fine, besides I took an early flight to get here, I’m beat,” came Maria’s jovial voice from behind her.

Liz spun on her heels and gave Maria a glare that would otherwise cause her to cringe, if she was actually scared of Liz, which she wasn’t. Liz was a doll and didn’t even know it. Maria surveyed the way Max watched Liz with animated amusement and a hint of something else, something completely male. A small smile tugged on her lips, Liz had no idea how attractive she was to the man standing in front of her.

Oh well, she would just have to give them a tiny little push, well a push for Liz because Max seemed to be doing just fine on his own.

And of course what better way to get to know Max’s friend, then to get in good with Max himself?

Yes, she was going to enjoy her trip to New Mexico, more than she ever could have imagined.

Liz couldn’t believe Maria. She was not supposed to come out of that damn bathroom until she had dismissed Max. Now her only really good excuse had just spoiled her plan. She turned back to Max and looked up at him. How could she say no? In that moment, she wanted to say yes, for just one night she wanted to feel alive again, feel a little like her old self again.

So why not, she asked herself. Why the hell couldn’t she go out this one time, this one night, and enjoy it for what it was worth? Afterwards she could tell Max he really wasn’t her type and that would be the end of it. It would be easier to lie to him after they went on a date, then before even giving him a chance, wouldn’t it?

“So, are you free?” he asked again, persistent isn’t he, she thought with a grin.

“Actually I am why do you ask?” She was flirting! She didn’t know how to flirt, was she doing a good job? She wished she could turn around and get a reaction from Maria.

“I wanted to know if you’d go to dinner with me, tonight. I could pick you up here, or your place, around seven. How does that sound?” He was so confident. It oozed from every pour.

“Why do you want to go out with me?” The words burst from her lips of their own accord, and how she wished she could take them back.

Even though she knew how he felt about her, he had only told Daisy, and it was online. What if he was just playing a joke on her? She looked away and then decided to take the plunge and look back, what she saw there caused her to gasp softly.

He’d stepped closer, his hands at his side, and his face held a seriousness she’d never seen before. She swallowed thickly, and tried to stop the racing of her heart.

“That’s an excellent question,” he paused and looked over her shoulder, she followed his gaze, and saw that they were suddenly alone…again. Where the hell did Maria disappear to now, she wondered for a second before his breath against her cheek drew her attention back to him.

“I like you, Liz. I know we don’t know each other well, but I think tonight is an excellent opportunity to try. I promise, I’ll have you back home early.” And then, he smiled, and she was taken.

In that fraction of a minute, he’d managed to make her feel warm and protected, yet he did nothing to garner such emotions. Yet, they were there. Maybe it was his smile, or his eyes; maybe it was a combination of both.

“Yes, I’ll go out with you. You can pick me up here at seven.” She knew it was wrong, she knew she should have told him the truth, there was still time, he was just saying goodbye to Maria.

The moment passed and she tried to regain her composure. Maria would grill her without a doubt. And she would feel utterly guilty for deceiving him.

He was gone now, and Maria was looking at her with a question written all over her face.

She didn’t answer; instead she reached down and grabbed one of her friend’s bags to bring upstairs.

A wave of terror gripped her to the very core. She was going out on a date with a man she didn’t even really know. It would end disastrously; she could want to leave ten minutes after they got there, wherever it was they were going.

“Liz,” came Maria’s concerned voice. Liz reached the top step and turned to regard her friend. “We need to talk.” Her voice was as serious as her expression. For some reason though, a spark of joy boiled inside of Liz. Tonight things might turn out terrible, but for a moment…just one moment she allowed herself to think of how good it might actually be. After all, it was only one night and one date.


TBC…

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Sun Dec 03, 2006 9:54 pm

A/N - I'm back with the update...a day behind...yesterday was a busy day for me so I couldn't get to it. But, this is kinda transitional, it's all down hill from here people, answers will be forthcoming starting with the next chapter...hope you enjoy and thank you so much for the feedback!

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Chapter Seven


<center>Breathe</center>


“Liz, you’re not even listening to me. You have already fallen for the guy, yet he still doesn’t know the truth.” Maria followed her friend into the living room where she was preparing to feed Jeremy.

Maria couldn’t help but smile. Jeremy was the spitting image of his mother, and he was simply adorable. The moment Maria saw him, she had to lift him in her arms and hold him, take in his fresh baby scent and feel his soft skin beneath her fingertips.

“I know that…wait, I’m not falling for anyone here. I haven’t even shared more than a few words with him.”

“In person,” Maria retorted contemptuously.

Liz rolled her eyes and tilted her son’s bottle a little higher. She tried not to think about the fact that she’d be going on a date with Max in three hours. In addition to that, she was really happy to see Maria but now that she was being lectured she was wondering if Maria being there was going to be more harm than help to her.

“What do you want me to do?” she asked after a few minutes. Jeremy was already falling asleep and he wasn’t half way done with his bottle.

“I want you to tell him the truth. Let him decide what he wants. I think he really likes you Liz, but if he finds out you lied to him, he’s not going to like it. He’s not going to trust you.”

“Why would I want him to? We are going out on one date, from there nothing is coming from it, Maria.”

“Why not?”

“Because it won’t. Just leave it alone.”

“Liz, how would you feel, if you went out with a guy you really liked, and then found out he was lying to you?”

Liz mulled over that for a few silent minutes and realized that Maria was right, whether she wanted to admit it or not.

“This is different. I’m just not telling him that I’m the one he’s talking to online. There is no harm in that.”

“No?” Maria eyed her friend closely. Liz was private, but there was something else going on. She would get to bottom of it before the night was over, but for now she needed to help Liz see the damage she may cause.

“Liz, I’m not the most levelheaded person in the world, but I know right from wrong. You are not being fair to him. He tells you, Daisy, that he really likes you, Liz. Shares things with you because he has anonymity online. You have the same, yet when he finds out that you are one in the same, he’s going to think you were playing some kind of trick on him. That’s not right, Liz.” Maria had already taken a seat beside Liz, she leaned over and stroked Jeremy’s dark head and smiled.

“He’s so beautiful Liz,” she said in awe.

“Thank you.” Liz smiled down at her son and placed a kiss on his head, he was fast asleep, but his lips still suctioned around the nipple of the bottle.

“And I know what you’re saying, Maria. If someone did that to me I would be hurt, so I’ll tell him.”

“You will?” Maria eyed her friend suspiciously; she gave in too quickly.

“Yes. Tonight after our date.”

“Liz,” she warned.

“What? Is it wrong for me not to want to spoil the only date I’ve ever been on pretty much my whole life?” she asked softly, knowing it was still wrong but she wanted…needed to be a little selfish.

“I guess not. But you will tell him right?” Maria asked taking Liz’s offer of Jeremy so she could stand and place him in his crib.

“Yes.” She said it, truly meaning it, and didn’t let the thought that maybe she was just trying to make Maria happy interfere.


<center>****</center>



“Daddy, did you tell her?” Trevor asked his father as soon as Max pulled out of his parent’s driveway.

“Tell her, what?”

“Daddy! See I always tell you stuff and you don’t listen. How come I have to listen to you all the time?” Trevor tilted his head to the side to regard his father in the rearview mirror.

Max blushed, damn if he didn’t forget to tell Liz his son said hi. Well he would have to make it up to him.

“Little man, I listen to you. I just got really busy, but I’m going to make it up to you.”

“Really? How?”

“I’m going out with Liz tonight, so you are going to stay with uncle Mike. Since I’m picking her up at the diner, you and uncle Mike can come with me and you can have dinner there.” Max smiled at his son’s sudden outburst.

“Oh can she make me something before she goes with you? I really want her too, do you think she will?” he asked excitedly. He wanted to see Liz again, he liked when she smiled at him and talked to him.

“I can’t promise you that, but I’ll see what I can do about it.” Trevor continued for a few minutes about what he wanted to eat and then left that subject for another. Fishing with grandpa.

Max however, listened intently and when his son finally grew silent; he peeked at him from the mirror and saw that he’d fallen asleep. Poor guy, he had a long day.

His mind then wandered to tonight, to his date with Liz. Max hadn’t thought of what they would do on their date, it didn’t matter to him though. He was going to see her, and talk to her, alone.

Max had a feeling that she wasn’t all that secure with herself. If she were, he highly doubted she would have asked him why he was asking her out. Well, he’d just have to make her see what he saw.

Eyeing the clock he saw he had about three hours to go, he still needed to shower, change and to wait for Michael to come over to baby-sit.

He couldn’t wait until tonight, it would be perfect, he would make sure of it.




<center>****</center>


“How am I supposed to dress for a date, when I don’t even know where we are going,” Liz questioned in frustration, from her bed.

Maria smiled; Liz had been fussing for the greater part of an hour about what to wear. Maria told her to just be comfortable, but Liz had argued that he may take her someplace that wasn’t casual and then she’d look like a fool.

“How about we take out two outfits, one dressy, one casual and when he gets here I’ll head downstairs and take a look? Then I can say, I’ll just run up and get you.”

“You think that would work?” Liz asked anxiously eyeing all the clothes tossed on top of her bed.

“It’s my suggestion, of course it will work. What do you think? I’m an amateur or something. I date professionally,” Maria added plopping down on the bed beside her.

“Professionally?”

“Well I date a lot,” she said looking up at Liz, then added, “of losers.” Both girls burst into a fit of giggles.

“You sure you’re okay being alone tonight? Mrs. Harding is going to bring Jeremy downstairs until they close. He usually falls asleep in the backroom with her rocking him.” Liz asked hesitantly. Maria had just come to town, not even one night, and she was leaving her alone.

“I’m positive. Besides, you were going to turn him down if I didn’t speak up,” Maria smiled knowingly as she rolled off the bed.

“Now,” she clapped her hands together. “We need to get you in the shower, your hair done and your two outfits picked out. And while I’m at it, we’ll probably have to raid my luggage.”

“Why?” Liz asked confusingly.

“Liz, don’t take this the wrong way, but I don’t think Roswell is the fashion capital of the world, and your wardrobe clearly tells me that.”

“I didn’t know Jersey was either,” Liz retorted teasingly.

“Oh it’s not. That would be the Big Apple, but I’m just a quick train ride in…so I’m closer than you are. See it’s all logical.”

“I see no logic to your lack of logic.”

“Trust me Liz, you need me.”

Liz eyed Maria as she began rummaging through her clothes and realized, that Maria really was right, Liz really did need her in more ways than one.


<center>****</center>


“Tell me about her friend again?” Michael asked for the third time as Max closed the front door behind him. They were leaving for the Crashdown and he was getting a little nervous…no he was more anxious than anything. Max couldn’t wait to see her and spend some time with her.

Michael however couldn’t stop asking about Maria. “What do you want to know? She had blond hair, she’s a little taller than Liz and…”

“How tall is Liz?”

“About five one, two maybe. God, Michael you act as if you don’t have a girlfriend.” Max said as Trevor squirmed in his arms, he wanted to walk but Max was already running late because of Michael.

“Come on little man, let me carry you to the car and get you in.”

“Daddy, I’m a big boy! You said it too!” Trevor crossed his tiny arms over his chest as his father hoisted him up on his hip.

“I know, you are Trev, but we don’t want to be late for Liz, do we?” Max knew that was low, he was now using Liz to get his son to do things, but desperate times called for desperate measures.

“Okay daddy.”

Michael watched in amazement as Trevor complied with his father’s request, sat in his seat and only looked out the window when Max started to drive. No fussing, nothing.

“That’s different,” he commented as Max placed the car in reverse.

“What is?”

“You and him. Don’t you get it?” he asked his friend and saw his confusion.

“Max, this is the first time you’ll be going on a date with a girl that not only knows you have a son, but has also met him. That’s different.”

Max took a moment to ponder that. It was true, of course he knew it, but the situation with Liz was different from the beginning. If it hadn’t been for Trevor wanting to eat at the diner, he might not have met her for a long time or ever if that. Still, putting that aside, he connected with Liz differently.

He looked forward to seeing her with almost the same anticipation he did in seeing his son everyday. Max didn’t think that was normal, but there wasn’t much he could do to stop his feelings.

“Uncle Mike, do you know Liz too?” Trevor asked from the backseat.

“No, but I’ll let you introduce us. How does that sound?”

“Okay, but you can’t have a milkshake, I’m sorry.” Trevor shook his head and crossed his arms defensively. Michael and Max eyed each other curiously.

“Why not?”

“Cause she only likes to make them for me!” he stamped his statement with a finger to his own chest.

“Ah, okay. I see…well we can’t win them all can we?” Michael said looking to Max with a smirk.

“I don’t know…can we daddy?” Trevor asked, and both men couldn’t hold back their laughs any longer.


<center>****</center>


“It’s time, Liz!” Maria called from the living room. She had Jeremy in her arms, he’d woken up about a half hour ago and decided it was playtime. Maria had to banish Liz to the bedroom to blow dry her hair otherwise she’d never be ready for her date with Max.

“I’m coming!” Liz looked down at herself. She wasn’t even dressed, she only had her robe on, she was just sad.

“Liz, you’re hair looks great, what did you do with it?” Maria asked lifting Jeremy up and hoisting him up on her shoulder. He was a tiny little thing but so great for hugging and kissing, she thought with a smile.

“I dried it. I’m pretty plain Maria. Nothing special, it just gets wavy from time to time. So you think I need some makeup or something?” Liz asked fidgeting with her hands as she crossed the room and took a seat on her desk chair.

“No, he likes you just the way you are, don’t go changing yourself for any man, Liz.” Maria knew the only thing she could offer Liz was advice on men. Lord knows she’d dated enough scumbags to fill a small city; the least she could do was teach Liz a thing or two about her bad experiences.

“I thought you found a great guy, didn’t you say that just last week?”

“Yes, but he was a moron. He took me out on three dates…three and thought I’d sleep with him! What an ass.” Maria waved her hand in the air dismissively.

“Is that what guys expect?” Liz asked hesitantly. She knew nothing of men, not decent ones anyway, and Max seemed very decent.

“Some do Liz, I can’t lie. Never give it up on the first date, they might enjoy it but think nothing more of you than a piece of ass.” Liz blushed at Maria’s bluntness.

“Now, if you get a guy and he doesn’t try and remove all of your clothes by the third date, he’s a keeper.”

“Have you ever gotten past the third date?” Liz asked apprehensively, she’d never had anyone to talk to and share girl stuff with, especially sex.

“Yes, but I gave it up on the second, yet another mistake. See Liz, guys are all made generally the same the key is to find the one that is just a little different, but in a good way.” Maria continued on but Liz was still so confused.

“I don’t understand anything you’re saying.” Liz turned to her friend as her son reached out for her to hold. She placed him against her chest and rubbed his back gently as he fisted a piece of her hair in his tiny hand.

“If the guy tries to kiss you on the lips at anytime during the first hour of the date, you need to forget him. If he manages to get through two hours of the date, and only touches you here and there, but doesn’t try to kiss you, then you keep him for another date.”

“But what if you get all the way to the end of the date, and he wants to kiss you goodnight? Then what?” Liz asked the question she most feared the answer to. What if Max did try to kiss her, should she let him? Was she comfortable with him doing it to begin with?

“That my dear is up to you. If you feel things have gone well, and you like him, go for it. If not, thank him and leave.” Maria made it sound so simple, Liz wasn’t sure if that would be the case when she was face to face with Max.

“Oh look at the time! I have to go downstairs and wait for Max.” Maria stood and like a whirlwind left the room, and Liz, alone with her thoughts.

Tonight would be just fine, she thought. She just needed to breathe.


<center>****</center>



“You look great.” Max said a few minutes later. Liz had come downstairs in a pair of light blue jeans, a pale pink v-neck sweater, and her coat in hand. Her hair was loose, which he was thankful for, he still yearned to feel it between his fingers.

“Thanks. Are you ready to go?” She looked up shyly at him, and he couldn’t stop his heart from racing.

“Daddy! Liz!” came Trevor’s voice from the front of the café. Max and Liz both turned to see Michael standing a few feet from them, Trevor right at his side.

“Trevor sweetie, how are you?” Liz asked, kneeling down to his level when he approached. Max and Michael exchanged a meaningful look over their bent heads.

“I’m good. I know my daddy didn’t tell you I said hi before when I was fishing with grandpa, but I really did!” Liz found it adorable that he was apologizing for his father’s forgetfulness.

“That’s okay. Did you like fishing?” Liz asked genuinely interested in him, Max noticed. It was enough for him to fall in love with her, but he wasn’t. Not in the least. It was too soon. Really soon. He needed to get them out of there, quickly.

“Yup! But when daddy goes with us grandpa says I’ll catch fish. Can you come too?” he asked, so hopeful, so happy, surely she wouldn’t say no.

“How about I think about it and let you know? Besides I think you’re dad would want to go with you and your grandfather alone.” Liz smiled and stood, dusting off her knees.

“Sorry, Liz this is my best friend Michael. Michael this is Liz.” Michael offered her his hand, which she shook with a smile. There was something quiet, serene about her, he noticed immediately. And the way she interacted with Trevor was amazing, he thought to himself.

“Oh, actually because I’m rude, I never formally introduced you to Maria.” Liz turned and waved Maria over, once she was by her side she turned to regard Max and his friend.

“Max, Michael, this is my best friend, Maria.” Michael was finally happy to be introduced, as was Maria.

“You ready to go?” he asked, she nodded and took his proffered hand.

“Okay little man, you be good for uncle Mike okay?” Max said as he leaned down and kissed his son on the top of the head.

“Yes daddy! You be good too.” Trevor offered his father a toothy grin before Michael lifted him away and into a nearby booth.


<center>****</center>


“I’m glad you decided to come out with me tonight, Liz.” Max turned to her as he opened the passenger side door of his car for her.

“Me too.” She smiled and her heart fluttered just a little. Breathe Liz. Breathe, she coached herself silently.

She wondered if Maria and Michael would have a chance to talk, and in the same breath, she hoped Maria had the foresight not to mention anything about seeing his picture online on Max’s CyberCafe homepage.


TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Fri Dec 29, 2006 10:48 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Sat Jan 13, 2007 9:49 pm

A/N - Hey guys...I'm back! Here is the update, and there will be another following next week, same time, same place. I want to thank you all for your feedback, bumps and PM's. I am seriously trying to get my WIP's done. I know I owe you guys a *really* big update on Magic and I'm going to work on it first thing when I get up tomorrow so fingers crossed it will be done.

Also, like I stated in my last note, I have posted a note about my future writing on my Work By Author page. So hopefully you guys will give a quick read so you'll know what's going on after my WIP's are done.

Without further ado...the update, I really hope you like it :wink:



Chapter Eight


<center> Queen of all Excuses </center>


“Are you cold?” Max asked as they drove in silence. This was not the way he planned the date to start out, but he had to work with what he had. And that was a very nervous date; she shifted in her seat as if it was beyond uncomfortable.

“No, I’m good, thanks.” She shifted again. Okay, he needed to think, it had only been four months since he’d been out on a date; he couldn’t have lost his touch…yet.

Boy, this was so much harder than he thought. Get in the game, he coached himself silently.

“You have any big plans for Thanksgiving?”

“Not really big plans, but the Harding’s, they own the diner, and I usually have dinner together. Maria’s here, so she’ll be joining us. We, Mrs. Harding and I usually stay up late for the two nights before and cook up a storm. We have Thanksgiving dinner early and then open the diner for a few hours and serve families in the neighborhood and nearby shelters.”

“I think that’s great, that you do that,” he tried not to trail off of his thoughts.

“Yeah. When I first moved here, I had no idea that there were that many people just in this town that needed help, but I’ve come to not only realize but understand how much I really have.” Max nodded his head, she obviously felt really strongly for this cause, and he had to admit he felt a little selfish. Why had he never thought to extend his help? He had the money, but he never thought of it. Now he just felt really bad since without asking he could figure Liz didn’t have as blessed life as he had, with a large family.

“And you do this on Thanksgiving Day?” he queried as he pulled onto the main stretch of highway. He had a dinner planned for them, and he hoped she liked it. It was as casual as he could get without the date being completely barebones.

He watched her as closely as one could while driving. She was animated with her hands, and she smiled at herself. He didn’t know why that made him smile, but it did. She was simple, but in a good way. Maybe simple wasn’t the right word, not complicated, yes that was it. She was the least complicated woman he’d ever gone out with.

Yet, a nagging feeling settled in his stomach. There was something secretive about her, she was private that was obvious, but there was something else. It was that same something that he’d picked up on when he’d first met her.

“What about you?” she asked breaking him from his reverie.

“Trevor and I usually spend it with my parents, sort of tradition, you know?” She nodded, seemingly interested, so he continued.

“Michael usually stops by for dessert and then we watch the game. Trevor says he’s going to grow up and be a football player. As much as I would love that, I’m not so sure about it.” Max let out a little laugh at the thought of his son.

“Why?”

“You really want to know?”

“Yes.” She smiled and turned slightly in her seat to regard him.

“You have to promise not to tell him I told you,” he began and then realized that it really was so easy to talk to her, he could almost tell her everything about himself, almost. He also couldn’t help but be glad that he could actually talk about his son. He loved his son, he was his whole world but never on any date did he allow himself to even speak of his son, until now.

“I promise!” she was obviously eager to know. Max thought for just a moment how well Trevor and Liz got along. How long had it been since Trevor had any interaction with a woman in his life, besides his grandmother? It was, refreshing.

“Michael and I usually get together on the weekend with some friends and play a round of touch football, and Trevor always wants to be included, always. The problem is, after about twenty minutes he is complaining about rules and about the fact that he can’t run fast enough, it gets quite sad. The boy makes you feel sorry for him, he really does. He usually sits it out and takes out his pencil and paper and starts drawing.”

Liz let out a little laugh and shook her head. “So, he likes to draw?”

“Very much. I have to wonder, what did I do wrong? My son, mine, loves to draw and not play football.” He still didn’t like to think about it; then again Trevor was young. Maybe he wouldn’t take too much after his mother after all.

Liz shrugged, “Well he’s young Max. I’m sure kids go through different stages, don’t they?” she asked, she seemed really unsure, but almost eager to hear his answer. He didn’t think too far into it and responded.

“Yeah, they do. Take me for instance, when I was six I wanted to be just like my father, a lawyer. Then I watched a movie when I was ten and decided that sitting in a courtroom all day was not what I wanted.”

“What did you want?” she asked and he froze for a moment. There it was again, his inability to not share his entire life with her.

“An architect. So I graduated high school and went to college, and that’s where I discovered landscaping.”

“Really? How did that come about?”

“It was a job I took part time my freshman year, just to keep me busy after classes and it grew from there. By the time I graduated I had enough experience and my parents gave me the hefty loan I needed to open up shop, and seven years later I’m still doing it and loving it. Weird?” he asked wondering what she thought of him. He hated that he was so unsure around her, but then again, it was truly invigorating.

“Weird? No, why would you ask that? I mean I personally think it’s great that you knew what you wanted to be while in college, most don’t. I have to say you must be pretty good if you’re still doing it, starting out at the age you were and making it.”

“Thanks.” He smiled despite himself. Their eyes met as he pulled into the parking space, they had arrived at their location for the evening. Obviously, he thought, she hadn’t realized that he’d stopped the car because she was still looking at him.

He wanted to kiss her, he really did, but he wouldn’t. Liz wasn’t the type of girl he could just go around kissing, they didn’t know each other, this was only their first date and…and…

Even still, he wanted to kiss her. What the hell was wrong with him?



<center>****</center>



After staring at him like a fool for five minutes, Liz had realized they had come to a stop in front of a park. Why on earth was this place so crowded, she wondered as he helped her from the car and then excused himself to walk to the trunk.

In the distance she could tell there was something going on around her. People were standing talking and eating, some were dancing, and others were playing miniature golf.

What was this place and why had she never even heard of it?

A slight panic crept up her spine. She was with a stranger, well sort of, and she was in an unfamiliar place, sort of, since she did know they were only six exits off the highway from the diner, and… she couldn’t let herself think too far into this. She needed to just relax, because if Max were anything but a gentleman she would have sensed it by now.

Wouldn’t she?

She sighed against the side of his car. It was a really nice, really expensive car, she may not have known a lot about cars but being that only a handful of people in Roswell drove around in a Mercedes she knew it had to be pretty expensive. Just how many cars did he have, she wondered to herself as she awaited his return.

“Okay, I hope you don’t mind.” He finally came back to her side, holding a pretty large basket and two blankets.

My ideal date would be dinner under the stars…

His words rang loudly in her ears. She thought for one minute that she would actually cry at his sweetness. He was taking her on his perfect date. She turned and eyed him cautiously, she knew she had to break the news to him tonight, but she promised herself she wouldn’t think about it.

“You ready?” he asked, offering her his bent arm.

“Absolutely.” Liz quickly slipped her hand through his arm and followed him into the park.


<center>****</center>



“Uncle Mike, I want dessert,” Trevor said as he took the last bite of his cheeseburger.

“Aren’t you full yet?” Michael asked as he watched Maria move around the kitchen in the back. Her long blonde hair was pretty damn distracting. What color eyes did she have again; green or hazel? Hell it really didn’t matter if he couldn’t get her to sit down at the table.

He tried to catch her eye, and he did several times, but all she did was smile. Maybe she wasn’t interested, he thought with a laugh. She seemed pretty interested to him, after all she was sneaking peeks at him when she thought he was too wrapped up in what Trevor was saying.

“No, Uncle Mike, I really want lemon cake.” Trevor tried not to lick his lips at the thought of Liz’s cake.

“Okay little man, give me a minute.” Michael waved down their waitress and asked if they had any lemon cake.

“I’m sorry, we’re out. We do have strawberry and chocolate.”

“No, I want lemon!” Trevor pouted, crossing his arms over his chest.

“Champ, they don’t have it. What if you tried something else?” Michael knew damn well that when Trevor set his mind to something, especially food, there was no changing it. It would be an exceptionally long night.

“Sorry, I can bring you both and you can try them?” The waitress was trying, he knew that, but it was futile. Trevor wanted lemon.

“But, I want Liz’s cake!” Trevor said a little louder than necessary, grabbing the attention of Maria.

Michael thought with a smile, maybe it wasn’t such a bad thing that they didn’t have lemon cake.

“Hi there,” Maria said standing at their table.

“Hi, do you have Liz’s lemon cake?” Trevor asked hopeful, batting his eyelashes like his daddy taught him.

“Not on me. But if you give me a minute, I’m pretty sure I know where to get you a piece, it’s the very last one so are you sure you want it?” She asked, taking a seat and looking at Trevor with a bright smile.

Michael sat back with a small smirk on his face, the Evans men definitely knew how to get a woman’s attention and keep it.

“Oh …what’s your name again?” Trevor asked with a tilt of his head.

“Maria.”

“Right, Maria…are you friends with Liz?” he asked, getting completely off the subject, but Michael didn’t mind.

“Green,” Michael mumbled drawing attention to himself.

“What was that?” she asked Michael with a knowing smile.

“Nothing.”

“Uncle Mike, my daddy says it’s not polite to talk when someone is talking, or something like that,” his nephew stood up on his seat making his point clear.

“Oh right. Please finish.”

“Okay, Maria, can I please have the last piece of Liz’s cake? It’s really good, did you have it before?” he asked innocently.

“Yes, you may. And no I haven’t, do you think I could have a little piece of it?” she asked, and Trevor seemed to toss the idea around in his head for a fraction of a second before responding.

“I’m sorry,” he said, reaching out his hand and placing it on top of hers, “I can’t do that. Liz would want me to have the whole thing for myself. Maybe,” he paused and shrugged his shoulders, “she can make you one…later.” Trevor removed his hand, sat back down and tried to give Maria a sympathetic look.

“All right then, I guess I’ll be right back.” Maria left the table and Michael watched every move. Girls in Roswell did not wear leopard print skirts like the one she was wearing, ever.


<center>****</center>


Maria pushed through the swinging door and marched up the stairs to Liz’s apartment. Liz had warned her before she left that Trevor might ask for dessert and if he did, she had saved him a piece of her lemon cake.

“Thank God,” she said as she entered Liz’s tiny kitchen. Maria thought with a little laugh, if Liz didn’t have the cake, she didn’t want to know how Trevor would react. She had to admit the boy was adorable. Looked just like his father, and probably, no definitely, had as much charm as he did.

She wondered how Liz was doing on her date, she was a little nervous for her, but she hoped, deep down, that Liz would tell Max the truth. It would be for the best, hell the man already liked her, and there would be no harm this early in the game.

But what if she waited?

No, Liz said she would tell him and Maria had faith that Liz would. After all, it wasn’t a big deal really. It was a little lie; she could even say that she just found out when he mentioned asking her out on a date and then the next day he asked her. Yes, that would work, if only she’d told Liz what to say.

“Damn it! I threw her to the wolves on this one,” she muttered to herself, making her way back down the stairs with the plate of cake.

“Oh, Maria, honey…do you think you could take Jeremy for a few minutes? One of the waitresses needs to head home, her son is sick and the sitter just called. It will only be for an hour or so…” Maria smiled, of course she wouldn’t mind.

“Not a problem. I would offer you my waitress assistance, but I don’t think you would be able to afford me.”

“Oh, well we can pay you reasonably, if that’s what you want…”

“No,” she laughed, “I guess what I meant is, I would hate to break all your dishes and cups. I’m pretty clumsy when it comes to that. I’m a paper plate and plastic cup kind of girl.” Maria smiled and plucked Jeremy from Mrs. Harding’s hands, propped him up on her hip and made her way back into the main dining area.

Don’t drop the baby. Don’t drop the baby… She repeated to herself until she almost made it to the table, and luckily Michael quickly stood and took Jeremy from her.

“Hey there,” he said with a smile, cradling Jeremy perfectly in his arms. He must have had practice with Trevor, she thought.

“Yours?” he asked. Obviously Michael wasn’t much for subtlety.

“Ah…well…I’m babysitting.” Maria smiled and changed the subject back to Trevor and his cake.

“Thanks!” he said with a smile and practically ripped the plate from her fingers and dug right into it.

“What’s his name?” Michael asked placing Jeremy back into her arms.

“Jeremy, he’s three months old.”

“Pretty cute kid. But…wait…”

“What?” Oh no, she thought. Oh no! Don’t ask questions! Please, don’t ask questions!

“I thought you just got to town.”

“I did.” Was it suddenly really hot in there? She never lost her cool. Never! But she had a secret, a really big one and she couldn’t tell Michael, Max’s best friend. She couldn’t!

Think quick, Maria, she told herself. Then got angry, she couldn’t think, this was too much pressure! It was worse than finding out a girl you hated would be wearing the exact same dress as you planned to wear to a big party. There was never enough time to find another perfect dress, so you just settled. She hated settling, and she hated lying, but she didn’t want to let Liz down.

“Who do you know besides Liz? I mean, whose kid is it?” Michael didn’t look happy, he looked confused and she knew if she delayed too long in her answer, he would get suspicious.

“A friend of ours. Her name is…its…Gwen.” Maria smiled at her quick thinking; this lying thing wasn’t so bad.

“But I thought Max said that you and Liz just met each other the other day for the first time.” Michael’s eyes narrowed. This was a bad sign, wasn’t it?

“Uhm…no, we’ve met each other before.” Okay so lying when you only knew one side, was really difficult. She swallowed thickly and prayed that Jeremy decided to cry or scream or throw up, anything really, to save her.

“Where?” he crossed his arms, he was not convinced at all. She hoped that Liz wouldn’t hate her, she really did. What was she supposed to do?

“Around.” She looked to Trevor who didn’t even realize there was a conversation going on, he would be no help.

She needed to excuse herself from the table; she needed something to distract Michael. Then like a light in the dark, she saw Mrs. Harding nearing the table, surely she would divert his attention onto other things, she thought with a smile of hope.



<center>****</center>


Liz felt like she was inside a movie, a really good chick flick. One where the girl gets the good looking guy and she was the girl.

They both had eaten and now lay on a blanket that Max had laid out for them to share. He had brought two, but Liz decided she liked his side of the blanket better. It was a foreign feeling, but again she went with it.

“So, I know it wasn’t a fancy restaurant and I know I didn’t make the meal, but did you like dinner?” he asked Liz, sitting a few inches from her. He had yet to touch her, except maybe when their hands touched as he passed her a wine glass.

“I think it was perfect, Max. Really, thank you. Now tell me more about this business of you not being able to cook. You have a son, how can you not know how to?” she asked with amusement when he blushed and scratched the back of his ear in embarrassment. Liz had learned, just over dinner, that when Max was uncertain of something or shy about answering (she wouldn’t have believed it if she didn’t see it), he would offer her a thin smile and scratch the back of his right ear.

He fascinated Liz. She enjoyed watching him and hearing him speak. She didn’t think that was normal, but she also had nothing to compare it too. The evening was just starting and was so great already, yet she was feeling the dread and guilt creep up.

“I have tried several times but it doesn’t work. Trevor is afraid to try anything new, so I either bring him to my parents or…”

“You eat out?” she guessed and offered him a pat on his shoulder, to her disbelief.

“It’s okay. Not everyone is a good cook but maybe you should take some cooking lessons or something.” She offered and took another sip of her wine, it was sweet and smooth, and she enjoyed it thoroughly.

“Obviously you can bake, does that mean you can cook too?”

“Yes, I actually can. I learned to cook when I was twelve.”

“Twelve? Well damn, I’m really far behind then. I only started to learn when Trevor turned two. Your mother must have been itching to teach you then,” he offered her a smile but she turned too quickly to appreciate it.

“Liz, are you okay? Did I say—” he trailed off and she turned back to him.

“No, it’s okay.” It was now or never, it was time she told him a little about herself, wasn’t it?

“I never knew my mother, she died when I was born.” Her voice was softer than she’d intended it to be.

“Liz, I’m sorry. I didn’t know…” Now she felt really bad, he felt bad because he thought he was making her feel bad.

That wasn’t it at all, she felt guilty. She had to tell him the truth, it wasn’t the end of the date but she couldn’t wait. She just couldn’t lie to him any longer. He was sweet and caring and just everything she would have wanted in a man, if she wasn’t so messed up, that is.

“Max, there’s something I need to tell you.” She noticed immediately that his entire demeanor changed.

This was going to be really hard, she thought nibbling on her bottom lip.

How does one explain her situation without making it a long drawn out story, one where he doesn’t feel pity for her or her circumstance?

“Liz, what is it?”

“I’m sorry…it’s actually not that important.” She chickened out. She couldn’t tell him now, not in the middle of the date. At least she could do what she said she would, wait until the end.

“Are you sure?”

“I’m positive.” She smiled and he tipped his glass to hers.

“So, do you dance?” he asked and she decided to go against all her fears and answer him honestly.

“I’ve never danced with anyone.”

“You’re kidding right?”

“No. But how about you give me a lesson?” She was flirting! It was far easier than she ever thought. Although a little voice in the back of her mind told her it was because she was so comfortable with him. Only him.

“I will give you a lesson, only if you promise to give me a cooking lesson.” Max smiled at her as he pulled himself to his feet in front of her. She peered up at him, and couldn’t hide the giddiness she felt at the thought of spending even more time with him.

She never let the feeling that her not telling him the truth a few minutes ago would come back to haunt her, sooner rather than later.



<center>****</center>



“Mrs. Harding, how are you? Did you need some help or something?” Maria bolted to her feet with Jeremy in her arms. This was her only chance for escape.

“Oh Maria, you are so sweet. No, I’m fine. I just wanted to know if you knew what time Liz would be coming home.” Well hell, that was not the conversation she needed to be having. She would just answer the question and move along, far away from the table.

“I’m not really sure, but I can call her if you want.” Yes, she would just pretend to call Liz. As if she would interrupt Liz’s first date in forever, ha!

“No, that is perfectly all right.”

“I insist,” she rushed out, praying that Mrs. Harding didn’t mention Jeremy.

“Don’t be silly. But if you wouldn’t mind calling her—”

“Not at all!” Maria breathed a sigh of relief. Now she could leave the table as quickly as possible, without further delay.

“Just ask her if she wants me to stay here with Jeremy or take him home with me and she can pick him up later.” And with that statement Mrs. Harding left the table, and Maria with Jeremy, to answer some really important questions.

It was going to be a very long night. She could only hope that Liz pulled through and told Max everything before the end of the night. Otherwise, it was going to get pretty ugly when Michael told Max the truth.

Why had she decided to visit early? It was a question she was asking herself at the very moment her worried eyes met Michael’s furious ones.


TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Sat Jan 20, 2007 8:44 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Sat Jan 20, 2007 6:14 pm

A/N - As promised here is the next update...another will follow next week. Your feedback means so much and all I can say is ...here's Max's story :wink:

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Chapter Nine


<center> Just Like Heaven </center>


“I see you dance pretty well for someone who’s never had a partner before,” Max joked lightly as the soft melody from the band playing a few yards away filtered through the air around them.

He had noticed, almost instantly how Liz tensed up when he pulled her into his arms. He thought it weird at first, but then as she relaxed against him, he chalked it up to nerves.

“I guess it’s only because I have a good partner. Who taught you how to dance?” she asked and he turned his face to meet hers. Her brown eyes sparkled in the moonlight, and be still his heart, her smile made it impossible for him to even remember what her question was.

Max stared at her for a minute, taking in once again, her downy complexion, her big, round almost childlike brown eyes, and lips, those lips would get him into trouble if he didn’t watch himself.

“I’m sorry, what did you say?” he asked, shaking his head and offering her a smile.

“You’re not a very good listener are you? Didn’t I remember hearing Trevor say something to that effect?” Liz joked and he couldn’t help but laugh. She was lighthearted and so very easy for fall for.

But he wasn’t falling, that was what was important.

“I do think he has mentioned that to me a time or two. Sometimes, it’s hard juggling my job and being his one and only parent. I need to work on that, I guess.” Max shrugged his shoulders and decided to focus back on Liz.

On to her hair, long and silky, the soft strands grazed his hands and he longed to run his hands through it. The scent of it was floral, but subdued enough not to take away from her own personal scent. Which, at this hour he could only compare it to a summer breeze, light yet substantial.

“Max, can I ask you something?”

“Of course.” He wondered what was on her mind. She had grown quiet in the last few minutes, and he thought maybe she wasn’t comfortable with all the staring he’d been doing at her. It unnerved him, so why wouldn’t it her? He needed to keep himself under control.

“Where is…who is Trevor’s mother?” Max froze at the question, he hadn’t expected it, nor did he ever talk about it. Maybe in the past he did, but not now. Immediately he noticed how he’d suddenly grown cold, and then realized it was because Liz had stepped out of his arms and was now standing a few feet from him. Her slender arms wrapped around herself, staving off the cool breeze in the air.

“Liz…”

“I’m sorry. That is none of my business. I shouldn’t have even asked. I don’t know why I did. I’m sorry, really, really sorry!” she pleaded with him, her voice hoarse and her body language speaking volumes of unspoken words. She turned on her heals to face him, tears clearly evident in her eyes. Why was she so emotional over the question, he wondered before approaching her, slowly.

“Don’t be sorry, Liz. It’s a pretty valid question. You’re going to have to forgive me for freezing up back there. I didn’t mean to, it’s just; I never get to talk about Trevor on my dates. And when I finally do and introduce women to him, it becomes awkward,” he paused, gauging her reaction. This was yet another thing he never did on dates, talk about his previous dates. Max could see this conversation going one of two ways; he hoped it leaned a bit more on the good than the bad at this point.

“Awkward how?” she asked, seemingly interested in the how and the why. Taking a minute to reach out his hand to her, Max watched as she hesitated but then clasped his hand and allowed him to escort her back to the blanket.

Once settled, Max took a deep breath and turned to Liz. “I was in my senior year of college when I met Cassie, Trevor’s mother. I was always so busy with work and school that we would just meet up here and there on campus. One night though she asked if I wanted to go with her to this coffee shop. I accepted since it was my day off. We actually got along pretty well, her personality at times was fun and other times it was like she was this whole other person. I never thought too much about it, not really. But about six months later, we were dating more steadily. Then she told me she was pregnant, but that wasn’t what I needed to brace myself for.” Max clenched his jaw as the emotions from nearly six years ago barreled at him, full force.

Liz reached out her hand to him, and he took it, without even realizing it.

“I can imagine finding out, just before your career started, that your girlfriend is expecting your child. You don’t have to tell me anymore.”

“No,” his voice was hoarse and so he cleared it before continuing. “It’s all right. Cassie told me that she was a heroine addict. And that she had been since she was seventeen. I couldn’t believe it. How did I not know? How could I not tell she was using? And God, she was pregnant! I was so angry with myself for not noticing, and pissed off at her for not telling me.” Max broke off and ran a frustrated hand through his hair. He hadn’t known until that moment how upset he still was over the entire situation. He’d tried to tell himself that it was over, it was a long time ago and that the only thing that mattered was that he had Trevor.

“God, Max!” Liz gasped and covered her mouth with her hand. Max couldn’t help but smile at her concern. He really could fall for her and it wouldn’t take much at all, in fact…no he didn’t let his mind wander to dangerous territory. Which is what she was, she had the potential, the great potential to make him commit to things he’d only dreamed of.

“I know. Of course I grilled her and yelled at her and said the meanest things I’d never even dare repeat to anyone. It was awful and the only thing I could think about was our unborn child. How much damage had she caused with that shit? Would the baby even survive? It killed me that I had no control over it.”

“What did she say?” Liz asked, moving closer to him, her hand still encased in his own.

Max shook his head and let out a little scoff. “She said she didn’t want the baby anyway. Honestly Liz, I’m not a violent guy by anyone’s standards. But I wanted, in that moment, to kill her. How could she say that? How could she…I just…I think about Trevor now and I can’t even begin to imagine my life without him. So how could she think that about her own child? I just couldn’t understand her at all. And then I went through the process of how stupid I was. I knew she could get pregnant, hell even worse that than, was I could have caught something from her. I was smarter than that! I didn’t talk to her for two days. And then I went to her doorstep and I begged her, I begged for her to keep the baby. I told her I would stay with her everyday if that’s what it took for her not to use.”

“What did she say? I can’t imagine if she was using that she would just jump on the wagon for you at that point.”

“You’re right, she didn’t. She slammed the door in my face and told me she hated me for doing that to her. She wished she’d never had met me, and in that moment so did I, but then I thought again about the baby. I talked to my parents and they told me I needed to convince her to keep the baby and to stop using. I knew what I was up against. I was just the father, the sperm donor, I didn’t get much say in anything, but it was my child and I wanted it even if she didn’t. You know?” Max turned to Liz, who had somehow crawled right in front of him, unbeknownst to him and now grasped both of his hands in hers. They rested gently against her legs. Tears cascaded in soft droves from her eyes and he reached out to swipe them away. She again flinched, but let him continue.

“Max, that’s…how did you talk her into it?”

“It wasn’t easy. I went back the next day and I wouldn’t leave until she let me in. I talked, and yelled and talked and yelled again, until finally she broke down and told me she would keep the baby and stop using. She explained that it wouldn’t be easy and that she had not used since she’d found out she was pregnant. I didn’t even know if it mattered at that point, was the damage already done? Anyway, I had for the first year of my career, to turn my company over to my parents and one of my best friends, Kyle. So I moved her into my parents house and never left her.”

“Did she get better since she was off the drugs for so long?” Hope filled Liz’s voice, her tears had subsided but Max could still see the sadness. Not pity, only sadness.

“No. In fact, she fought with me everyday. It was the longest nine months of my life. Mostly I would leave her alone but some nights, when she was herself again she would ask me to stay. And we would talk and she would thank me for making her keep the baby. I would sometimes hope that after all was said and done, she would stay clean and we would be able to raise our baby together.”

“Did you love her?”

“No,” he answered quickly and honestly.

“I cared about her, but I never loved her. Maybe for just a minute I did.”

“A minute?” Liz asked confused.

Max looked straight at her and smiled. “Yes. The moment the doctor put Trevor into my arms, I can honestly say I loved her for giving him to me.” Max finally let a tear roll down his cheek, and this time it was Liz’s turn to swipe it away.


<center>****</center>


Michael followed Maria upstairs a few minutes later. He was furious! Liz had a baby but never thought to tell Max. It didn’t make any sense to him, and damn this latest discovery for spoiling his plans of asking Maria out on a date.

Trevor was pretty happy knowing that he would be going upstairs to Liz’s place, yet another thing Michael was sure Max didn’t know about. Just what the hell was going on, and what was the need for all the secrecy?

“Maria, you need to explain this to me. Make me understand.” Michael said once they had settled Trevor in the living room and distracted him with the television.

They now stood in the kitchen, with Michael staring Maria down in question.

“I don’t know how.” She looked nervous to him. That only seemed to aggravate him more so.

“How about I ask some questions and you answer them?” he asked and she nodded, still holding Jeremy in her arms.

“He really does look like her,” he commented off subject. Maybe because he wanted to talk to Maria about a slue of other things, and not about the fact that the girl his best friend liked, was lying to him.

Maria looked down and placed a kiss on Jeremy’s head, then smiled. “He really does.”

“So he’s really Liz’s.”

“He is, but you can’t tell Max.”

“Are you kidding me? He deserves to know, but what I can’t understand is, why would she lie?”

“She’s scared.”

“Of what? His reaction? I can assure you this would not bother Max at all, but the lying will. What’s the big deal? She’s not married is she?” Maria shook her head, so he pressed on. Maria was not divulging any information it seemed.

“Who’s the father?” he asked, realizing that his voice had gotten louder and he needed to control that. If Trevor heard any of it, there would be serious questions to be answered.

“I don’t know.”

“Does he live around here?”

“I don’t know.”

“Do you know anything!” he hissed out angrily.

“Look Michael, I know you’re angry. I would be too, but I’m asking you to just listen to me and trust that what I tell you is all that I know.” Michael’s temper calmed and he took a seat at the small, round wooden kitchen table.

Maria let out a deep sigh, and took a seat beside him, cradling Jeremy against her chest. “You were right, I only just physically met Liz today. We met online a while ago and formed a friendship. I talk to her daily on the phone and I am here visiting. I’m a little early; I was supposed to be here for Thanksgiving. I really don’t know who the father is and I don’t know much about Liz’s past except that she doesn’t like to talk about it.”

“Why won’t she tell you?” Michael’s curiosity grew by the minute. If Maria was Liz’s friend and she didn’t know whom the father of Liz’s three month old was, then what exactly was the big secret?

“She’s tried before, but she chickens out. Whatever it is, it’s big. You can’t tell Max.” Maria rushed out again and Michael pinned her with an incredulous glare.

“I’m telling him she has a kid.”

“No!” she pleaded.

“So far all I know is that Liz is lying. Why shouldn’t I tell my best friend? Maria, Max really likes her and when he finds out she lied…”

“I’m telling you Michael, I’m begging you to not tell him. Just give her time.”

“Time for what? For him to fall for her and then she can drop the bomb on him that she has been lying to him?” Michael knew damn well his friend had already fallen for Liz, even if he didn’t want to admit it. If only he had a good reason to keep it from Max, he would, for just a little while.

Maria pleaded with him. “Please just let her tell him in her own way. I know you don’t know me and you don’t know Liz, but I’m asking you to at least let her try and tell him first.” Damn those eyes, those lips. If it were any other situation he would have kissed her already. She was feisty and beautiful, his favorite combination. Although, Maria had something else that made him fantasize many unspeakable things about her. It was that fiery spark she emanated when she spoke.

“When is this supposed to be happening?”

“Tonight,” she rushed out. “Tonight she said she would tell him everything.”

“There’s more?” he questioned and noticed immediately how her body tensed up. He couldn’t help but smile; she was a terrible liar.

“—about Jeremy.”

“You sure that’s it?”

“Yes. That’s it.”

Michael knew without a shadow of a doubt, there was more to the story than Maria let on, but he did believe her when she said she didn’t know anything more.

He could only hope that whatever it was, Liz would tell Max tonight. Michael couldn’t lie to Max, not for long. It was this pact they had made a long time ago, when Trevor was first born. Michael promised he’d be there for Max in any capacity he needed, and Max the same. The one point, which Max made very clear, was that he needed people he could trust, and he trusted Michael to be honest with him, no matter what.

He prayed that Liz would tell Max the truth, whatever it was, tonight.



<center>****</center>


Liz was on cloud nine. Her date with Max was going great, but it was coming to and end. They had already played two rounds of miniature golf and she was sure that Max could sense her tensing every time he showed her how to stand, or hit the ball. She wished she wasn’t so jumpy at times, but she couldn’t help it.

“Now a few more lessons, you’ll be a pro. Although, it looks like you’re giving me cooking lessons and I’m giving you miniature golf lessons, but I believe that you still owe me.” Max smiled brightly and she felt her knees go weak, how odd, she thought.

“Owe you?” she laughed.

“Yes. Don’t forget I gave you a dancing lesson earlier. So that means I’m one up on you, so you owe me.”

“And what do I owe you?” she asked, and swallowed thickly when he stood face to face with her, a smirk on his lips. He was amazingly beautiful, if one could use the word to describe a man. He truly did make her feel things she never thought were possible, not for her. Never for her. No man ever looked at her the way he did. No man ever took the time to show her things, and didn’t even make fun of her for not knowing. He was patient with her, and he deserved the truth.

Her guilt had begun to creep back deep inside of her. She needed to tell him exactly who she was; she couldn’t keep the truth from him any longer. Maybe Maria was right, he wouldn’t be too upset, and maybe he’d even understand her hesitation in telling him. Yes, this was much easier than she had originally thought. After all he had shared his story with her it was only fair.

Squaring her shoulders, she garnered her nerve and opened her mouth to speak.

“Another date. I want another date with you.” His declaration stopped her words dead in her throat.

Did he really mean it? He was that interested in her, that he wanted another date.

Max moved closer and reached for her arms, pinned at her side, and gathered them both up in his and awaited her answer.

She couldn’t tell him. She would tell him later, when he dropped her off…or maybe she could just tell him tomorrow.

Yes, she thought, she could tell him tomorrow. Early. First thing. As soon as she saw him.

“What do you say?” He looked so hopeful to Liz. She again had to stop herself from pinching her own arm to know if this was truly real. If someone like him wanted to see her again.

“I say, yes.” She smiled and he pulled her into his arms and for the first time in her life, she felt the arms of a man who wasn’t out to hurt her, or to berate her for being who she was. Instead, what she found, in Max’s arms was something she always thought she wasn’t good enough to feel with someone else.

Happiness.


<center>****</center>


Max watched her closely for a second after he pulled onto the highway. It was getting pretty late, and he needed to get Trevor into bed, he knew that, but still he didn’t want the night to end with Liz.

Being with her, to him, was like a breath of fresh air. She might have been sheltered but for what she didn’t know, she more than made up for in her smiles, intuitiveness, intelligence, and God help him for saying so, but her body. She moved with an air of innocence, so much so he would have guessed she could quite possibly be a virgin.

Nah, he shook the thoughts away. She was beautiful; there was no way in hell that some guy didn’t sweep her off her feet already.

But hadn’t she been insecure with him asking her out, to the point of asking him why he had? And didn’t she always seem to tense when he reached for her? These questions, added together with the nagging feeling he’d had since she’d told him earlier that there was something she needed to tell him, sent off alarms in his head.

What was she not telling him? What was her secret? She had to have a secret. She might have been pretty illusive with her feelings towards him, but when she smiled at him he could tell she meant it. And when she was holding back, oddly enough he could sense it almost immediately.

“You know Liz, we haven’t had date number one type conversations,” he said breaking the silence.

“No? Then what date number were they?” she asked with a hint of a smile on her lips. At least he could tell that she liked him and as an added bonus he would get to see her again.

“Maybe, seven or eight.”

“You don’t know?” she asked with mild amusement.

“No. I can honestly say I have never shared that information with any of my dates.”

“Then I feel special.”

“You should, because you are.” The words slipped from his tongue before he could snatch them back. It was only their first date; this was not the right conversation to be having. Then again the entire night’s conversations weren’t typical.

Max watched her blush and then turn her face away towards the window.

“Where is she now?” Max didn’t need to ask her to elaborate; he knew she was talking about Cassie.

“She’s in a mental hospital in California. About three years ago, she called me from a party and she didn’t sound right to me. So I asked her where she was and told her I would be there to get her. I hadn’t seen her since Trevor’s first birthday at that point. When I got there, it was like a scene from out of a nightmare. She was huddled on this dirty couch, and the room was full of people shooting up, and doing just about everything else. I dragged her out, but when I got her in the car I noticed she wasn’t breathing right. I tried to wake her up, but she just wouldn’t.” Max paused and stared out the windshield, recalling that night. It was at that moment he felt Liz’s hand on his shoulder, providing him comfort and support that he didn’t even know he needed, but did.

“I rushed her to the hospital and I called Michael and my parents. I thought she was going to die. I thought I got there too late. If I weren’t out that night, I would have gotten her first message instead of her fifth. I felt like I was letting Trevor down, his mother was going to die and he didn’t even know her.”

“What happened? She obviously did live right?” Liz’s voice sounded small to his ears, and he didn’t know why he had the overwhelming need to pull her into his arms and soothe her, as much as he needed it himself.

“Yes, she lived. They told me that she had overdosed and that caused a serious lack of oxygen to her brain. She can’t even feed herself now; she can’t even hold her son or…do anything. I feel like it was my fault.” Max’s voice once again, to his utter disbelief had gone thick with emotions. This was not a normal first date, that was for sure.

“It’s not your fault Max. How can you say that? You tried to save her long before that, but she didn’t want it. Sometimes…” she trailed off but he wanted to hear what she was going to say.

“What? Sometimes what?” he asked as he pulled the car to a stop in front of the café.

“Sometimes you have to want to be saved, Max. Sometimes, it’s not as easy as people think to just move on from something. To get over it and live your life normally.”

Max’s eyes narrowed a bit, she wasn’t talking about Cassie she was talking about herself. He knew without a doubt she was. The only problem was, he had no idea what she was referring to. He decided to give her time, it was something painful and deep and he didn’t want to push her.

“I guess I just wanted her to accept him, before she was the way she is. I used to take him to see her, but she doesn’t even recognize me at all. I have pictures of her for him, when he gets older. I thought he should at least know the good parts about her,” Max continued to ramble and shrugged his shoulders in thought.

“I guess I just wanted my son to have a normal life.”

“What’s normal?” she asked from beside him, staring at him intently, wanting to know what his definition of normal was. Almost as if she was measuring him up for something.

Max cleared his throat. “A mother and father who love each other, who support each other and who are there for him.”

“You’re all of those things, Max. Everyday, you’re there in that capacity and more. I don’t think you should discredit yourself so much. It might not be the typical family, but it’s still a family right?”

Max turned his eyes to her, seeing her in a completely new light, if possible, and in that moment knew she was the one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. As quick as it seemed to him, as surreal and disbelieving, she was the one for him.



<center>****</center>


“Thank you for a really great night, Max.” Liz strolled up to the sidewalk with Max right beside her. They had shared what she thought was an unprecedented first date. She knew things about him, understood him and his insecurities more than she ever thought possible.

It was the end of the night and she could tell him now, she knew he’d understand. He would, he would have too because she couldn’t imagine never sharing another day like today with him.

“I’m just glad you had a good time. All my talking probably depressed you,” he joked lightly.

“Not at all. I’m glad it wasn’t the typical chit chat that goes on, like in the movies and you’re saying to yourself, when are they going to act like themselves.” She smiled genuinely at him and awaited his returned gesture. He really did have a great smile.

“I promise our next date will be in a nice restaurant with…”

“No,” she shook her head. “I wouldn’t change a thing about tonight. I loved dinner under the stars.” Liz smiled and fished in her purse for her keys.

“So can I get your number?”

“Oh right! Sorry, here is my cell phone number. I have it on all the time.” Liz said as she pulled out a piece of paper and scribbled her number down nervously.

Max took the slip of paper from her and pushed in into his pocket, and then to her surprise reached out and pulled her closer. She tried to tell herself not to freeze up because she was comfortable with him. However, when he reached up and brushed the hair away from her face and looked directly at her, she realized that in that moment she wanted nothing more than for him to kiss her.

Instead though, he leaned in and pressed a soft kiss to her temple and bid her goodnight.

Liz rushed inside, wanting to share her night with Maria but she paused remembering she didn’t tell him the truth. She was so caught up in him and her thoughts of him that she never even said anything! Maria would be angry, but it would be okay because she was going to tell him tomorrow anyway.

No big deal.

At least that’s what she thought until the door behind her shut and Maria stood in front of her, arms crossed and a scowl on her face.

“Michael knows.”


TBC…


P.S. Have a little faith in me here people...just a little :wink:

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Behrsgirl77
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Post by Behrsgirl77 » Sun Jan 28, 2007 11:29 am

A/N - Hey guys...a day late, but I did have it finished late last night, I just needed to read through it. It's long so hopefully that makes up for it. I know you are all frustrated with Liz, but your frustration ends now.

Thank you so much for the feedback and I hope you enjoy!


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Chapter Ten


<center>Underneath It All </center>


“What do you mean, ‘Michael knows’?” Liz hissed out as she made her way through her apartment. She’d just had the best night of her life and now everything was ruined. She should have just told Max. She had the opportunity, it was there for the plucking, but she just couldn’t do it.

The night was perfect. Would he have listened to her story and felt sorry for her; she didn’t need anyone feeling sorry for her.

Especially him though, she thought with deep sadness. She wanted more from him. Like no one she’d ever met in her life. Now she would never get the chance, it was too good to be true; even she knew her fate would step in.

“What was I supposed to do, Mrs. Harding opened her mouth and that was it.”

“I can’t believe you told him. You could have lied!” she grumbled out folding herself down on her couch. She felt cold, and not just from the temperature in the room.

“I tried to lie. I was doing so well too, but then she came over asking about you and Jeremy and he figured out he was your son. I couldn’t lie from there. I thought, if I lie he would just run to Max and it would be over. He would have probably pulled out his cell phone and called Max on your date, I couldn’t let him do that.”

“So you tell him I have a son. What else?” Liz narrowed her gaze at Maria, not really mad at her. It wasn’t her fault that her web of lies was slowly suffocating her.

Maria crossed the room and took a seat next to her friend. “I told him that I didn’t know anything else. Which is the truth. He wondered who the father was, where he was, and I told him…”

“You don’t know, because you don’t.” Liz deadpanned. This was what she was trying to avoid all night. Straightening up and looking at this as an opportunity to practice for when she told Max, she took a deep breath and turned to her best friend.

“Maria, it’s time I told you the truth, about Jeremy, about my life and I’m just sorry it took me so long to tell you.” Liz then began to pour her heart out, telling her tale with such detachment that she truly believed, at least for a little while, that none of it happened to her.

When she was through, she looked to Maria and asked, “Do you think he will tell Max before tomorrow?” Liz knew she’d just shocked Maria with her story, but she needed to focus on not losing Max.

Suddenly, her past didn’t matter; nothing mattered except being with him, for however long she had.

“No, I don’t think he’ll tell him. Are you sure you’re okay…I know you said…”

“Maria, I’m fine.” Honestly, she wasn’t. Liz wasn’t sure if she’d ever be okay. In fact the only time she felt normal was when she was with Max. He had no expectations of her, he accepted her just the way she was.

“Oh hell,” she groaned. “I should have told him tonight.”

“No, Liz. That was…you needed time. I can understand that. I’m sorry I pushed you…” Liz smiled and then pulled Maria into a hug.

“It’s okay. I need to write him an e-mail.”

“Max?”

“Yes.”

“Why?”

“Because before I tell him, I want him to know how great tonight really was and then I’ll go to bed and hope that after I tell him, he’ll find a way to forgive me.” Liz stood and tried to smile, even though it hurt like hell.

“Liz,” Maria called out as Liz carried her laptop down the hall to her room.

“Yeah?”

“If he doesn’t, then he was never really worth your time.” Liz smiled and was even more grateful for having Maria in her life.


<center>**** </center>


The rain began to pelt the hood of his car as he pulled up Michael’s driveway. He had driven back to his friend’s house, thinking only of Liz, of her smile, of her lips…of their perfect date.

Well, almost.

He would have loved to kiss her, to hold her in his arms until the sun came up. Max let out a deep sigh. He needed his patience with her. That was okay for him though, so long as he got to see her everyday. He smiled to himself as he shifted his car into park, but then paused as something Liz had said earlier entered his mind.

I loved dinner under the stars

Max shook the thought from his head, but something was nagging at the back of his mind.

I loved dinner under the stars

“No. I’m just…” He shook his head once again and leaned back in his chair, closing his eyes and thinking about the entire nights events.

Why did that stick out in his mind?

She could have just said it randomly. It wasn’t that big of a deal.

What if it was?

What if she was…no that was insane. She would have told him.

He then sat and mulled over all the similar things he could come up with.

“What if she was scared?” he mumbled to himself as the rain started to fall harder against the windshield.

Taking but a minute longer to consider the idea, he pulled out his cell phone and called Michael.

“I have to talk to her tonight. There’s something she’s not telling me,” he explained to his friend.

“How do you know?” came Michael’s question.

“I just know. I’ll explain it later. Can you watch Trev for a little longer?” he asked, knowing that Michael had work in the morning just like him.

“Of course. Besides, he’s passed out so you can just come in and grab him, unless you want me to wait up.”

“No, I’m sure it’s nothing. It’s probably stupid, but I won’t be able to sleep.”

“Okay. Max?”

“Yeah?”

“Liz seems like a really nice girl but different don’t you think?” Max nodded his head even though he knew his friend couldn’t see him.

“Yes, I know exactly what you mean. It seems like she’s lived this other life or something. I can’t explain it. Thanks for watching Trev for me.”

“Anytime.” Max snapped his phone shut and wondered why Michael was thinking about Liz, but chalked it up as being concerned for him.

He had already figured that Liz lived above the dinner. It was the only explanation, as well as the fact that when her friend Maria came with her bags, she’d asked him to take them to the back room by the stairs leading to the second floor.



<center>****</center>


After checking on Jeremy, Liz moved to her room, placing her laptop at the corner of her bed. She needed to write the e-mail and try and get some sleep.

It wasn’t a matter of her being tired, she was exhausted but she was feeling sick to her stomach about the situation with Max.

Why him?

There could have been others, but only him.

She served men all day in the diner, and not one spark, not one look from any of them. But Max walks in and he had a hold on her from the moment she saw him.

Of course, if she was honest with herself, he’d already had that hold from the moment she starting talking to him online. He made her smile, and he was an amazing father to Trevor and he treated her with such respect, it was surreal at times for her.

A smile tugged at the corner of her lips at the thought of Trevor. He was his father’s son, and he had an amazing personality. Liz thought about what Max had told her about Cassie, Trevor’s mother, and she felt a pang of sadness. She knew what it was like to live without a mother, but she wasn’t lying when she’d told Max he was doing a great job.

It was the truth. There was so much he could teach her. What, however, could she offer him?

A shiver ran up her spine and she walked down the hall to turn the heat up, she closed her door behind her and decided to get the e-mail typed and sent before she lost her nerve.

Regardless, she thought, it was going to be a long night.


<center>****</center>


Max weighed his options evenly. He could either bang on the back door of the diner and hope that someone heard him, but that would wake up not only Liz, but also Maria and anyone else living there.

On the other hand, he did pass a fire escape leading to the second floor, and could try using that route first. But what if that was where Maria slept? Or what if Liz didn’t even live upstairs and she was just putting the bags there in the meantime?

He decided the second route was still better than waking the entire place. If it wasn’t Liz’s room, he could easily leave without anyone knowing better.

The rain continued to pour down on him. Once he reached the bottom of the ladder he said a silent thank you that it wasn’t that high.

Normally, he wasn’t scared of heights, but it was a metal ladder and it was raining. Blowing out a breath, he reached for the first ring and easily pulled himself up until he reached the ledge at the top.

He peered over it and saw a light on, but he couldn’t see anyone, so he leaned up further and his breath caught in his throat.

It was Liz, sitting at the edge of her bed with a laptop sitting directly beside her. What was she doing, he wondered as he swung himself over the ledge and landed soundlessly on the platform.

Despite the rain, he stood outside watching her. She moved gracefully, and God he wanted her, more than anyone in his life. He took in his surroundings, noticing two lounge chairs and several unlit candles. He wondered what she thought about when she sat out here, did she ever think of him in the time that she’d known him?

Shaking himself back to reality he moved in closer to the window, kneeled down and peered inside, taking a closer look before he knocked.

She was now typing something, and…crying. What the hell was going on? Resisting no longer, he lifted his hand to the window and knocked softly.

Liz was startled to the point of almost dropping her laptop to the ground. He hoped he wasn’t making a mistake, but he needed some answers. Sleep would not come without them.

He waited and watched as she swiped her eyes, and stood tentatively. She unlocked the window and opened it, the rain now soaking her clothes. He noticed immediately that she hadn’t changed yet from their date.

“Max, what are you doing here?”

“I needed to talk to you.”

“You could have called me,” she smiled nervously, standing back and letting him inside.

“I’m sorry. I could have…I should have but I didn’t think about it.” Max smiled and looked around her room quickly. It was small, but comfortable. Lived in. It was Liz.

Liz pushed her hair back from her face and he noticed that she looked unsettled now.

“Ah, do you think you could get me a towel? I’m dripping all over your rugs.”

“Oh, right! Sure!” she squeaked and practically ran to the bathroom, adjacent to her bed.

When she returned, Max took the towel and ran it through his hair and down his clothes briefly. He’d stepped further into the room when she left to get him the towel. Max was a few steps from the edge of her bed; where she’d just vacated a few moments ago.

“What did you want to talk about?” she crossed her arms over her chest.

He watched her closely before he answered. “Dinner under the stars.” Max saw her immediately tense, she was worried, he was right. Now he had to find out what was really going on.

“What are you talking about?” she asked, avoiding his gaze.

“Tonight, after our date, you said you loved dinner under the stars. Why did you say it?”

“Because we ate dinner outside and I really liked it. That was all.” She was defensive now, it seemed he had hit the nail on the head.

She was lying to him.

“Funny that you used that term. I’ve only used it once before…in an e-mail to someone I talk to online.” He gauged her reaction, not knowing if he was angrier with her for lying or more worried about why she had.

She hesitated, seeming to want to lie but decided against it. Instead she turned and walked over to the now closed window and sighed.

Max watched her, waited for her to begin. Was he wrong? It could have just been a weird coincidence, but it stuck out at him like nothing else. Was he just jumping to conclusions? He asked himself those very questions, but stopped that line of thinking the moment his eyes caught sight of her laptop.

Particularly, the page she was on, CyberCafe, she had an e-mail half typed. He needed to know, even if she said the words, he needed to see it for himself.

Max leaned over and pulled the laptop up, and began to read.

Max,

I had the best night of my life tonight. I don’t know how to put into words the way I feel right now, but if I had to use just one word it would be, happy.

I’m happy. It’s really hard for me to say that. There are so few times when I can honestly say I feel that way, without trying either. My son makes me happy, but this is different.

Tonight, I went out on my first date ever. In all of my twenty-four years, I’ve never had a date. Maybe it was because I was too shy, too busy, maybe because I never thought I was worth it, maybe because I hadn’t found the right person.

He was the right person. There are so many things about him that make up this unique and great guy.

I wish I could have told him that. I wish I could have told him so many things.

I wish I could have told you so many things.


The e-mail ended there, he watched the cursor and then felt the laptop being snatched from his hands.

“That’s not for you to read!” she hissed out at him and slammed the laptop closed.

“You’re Daisy, and since that e-mail was addressed to me, I had every right to read it. Now do you want to tell me why you lied to me?” his voice devoid of anger, more so filled with curiosity now.

“I was going to do this tomorrow. Can you just wait until tomorrow?” her voice was soft and pleading, and he wanted to wait, he wanted to give her time, but a part of him wanted answers.

“You could have told me. Why didn’t you tell?” he asked again, his tone softer.

She began to cry and he felt terrible. He should just leave, he really should. But he couldn’t leave her upset.

“Just please tell me. Was it a joke or something? Or did you…I don’t know, Liz, I have about a million scenarios going through my head right now.” Liz’s eyes met his, tears brimming and finally she sank down onto the bed and began to explain.


<center>****</center>


How had it all come down to this? If only she’d told him sooner, she could have saved herself this conversation. She never thought he’d figure it out, but he wasn’t an idiot. It didn’t take much, but she’d blown it with her words and her reaction to his words a few minutes ago.

“It wasn’t a joke, I swear. I just needed time to tell you. I’m sorry, Max.”

“Did you mean it?” he asked her coming to sit beside her.

“Mean what?” she sniffled and faced him.

He motioned towards her laptop and she nodded.

“Then why lie to me? I would have understood. I know we don’t know each other that well, but I would have listened to you.” She nodded, knowing it was true. They might not have known each other that long, but he already shared an incredibly difficult part of it with her.

“What about now? Will you listen now?” she asked, hope rising to the surface, for the first time in her life she had hope.

“I’ll listen.”

“First of all I want you to know that I tried to tell you, not that it makes it better but…” she stopped when she felt his soft caress against her arm.

“I know you did.”

“When we first started talking I didn’t know it was you, not right away but then I saw your picture and you came into the diner. What were the odds, right?” she let out a little laugh before continuing.

“I honestly didn’t want to tell you right away, I was afraid of your reaction now that you’d met me. And to be honest, I liked having someone to talk to besides Maria. Anyway, I should have told you when you asked me out, but I was never going to accept.”

“Why not?”

Liz shrugged her shoulders. “I didn’t believe it. And I figured…it doesn’t matter. You asked me, I said yes and I had a great time.”

“So why didn’t you tell me?” There was that pleading voice, and question, she had to quell her need to burst out into tears in front of him.

“I have to tell you something. I think it will help you understand…at least I hope it does.”

“Okay.”

Liz stood and took a seat across the room, it was an old footrest but cold and uncomfortable was better than next to him, she couldn’t think next to him.

“My mother died, as you know, when I was born. My father resented me, he blamed me because she died giving birth to me. He hated the fact that I lived, but his wife died. I guess it could have gone either way; he could have loved me because I lived, but he didn’t. He reminded me for as long as I could remember that I meant nothing to him, and that only because no one else would take me he would raise me until I was eighteen and then I was on my own. When I turned sixteen, I got a job at a local diner. I worked there so I didn’t have to go home. I would sometimes just sleep in one of the booths until school in the morning,” her voice faltered so she straightened up not daring to look at Max.

“On the day of my eighteen birthday, I came home from work and my father was gone. The apartment was empty except for my belongings. I don’t know why I cried, but I did, for so long. I knew he’d leave me, I did. I knew he didn’t love me, I did. A part of me though, thought daddy would love me one day, I just had to prove myself. I got into college on a full academic scholarship; I worked my ass off all four years for it. When I’d told him, he just shrugged his shoulders and told me to leave him the hell alone.” Her shoulders began to quake but she cleared her throat and continued. Funny how when she’d told Maria the story, she was completely detached, now with Max though, she was right back there, eighteen and alone in the world.

“Liz, you don’t have to…just…” He was at the very edge of the bed, he wanted to touch her, maybe even hug her, but she didn’t want it. If she stopped she would never start again.

“Let me finish, please,” she pleaded softly and met his gaze for the first time in awhile. He nodded.

“I went to college, and I worked part-time and studied to get the best grades. It was all I had. I had to graduate and get a good job. I had no time for anything else. I graduated and took a teaching position. I loved it.” Liz smiled in remembrance, it seemed like another person, a lifetime ago.

“What grade did you teach?” he asked.

“Tenth grade. I was young and didn’t know any better, but I thought I could change their lives. I really believe it.”

“I’m sure you did, Liz.”

“Thank you for saying that.”

“I mean it.” He offered her a short nod, urging her to continue.

“I know you do, Max.” Liz looked up at him and smiled. He really was easy to talk to, no matter the subject. She wished she didn’t have to tell him the rest, but he deserved it, after all he’d shared his story. It was time for her to let go, even if it was just for a little while. Especially if she truly wanted more with him and she did.

“I had an apartment of my own, everything. I was saving for a car. I never had one. I walked everywhere. Almost two years later my life changed, maybe if I had a car it wouldn’t have, but it’s too late for that,” her voice now hoarse and thick with emotions barreling at her.

“Liz, ah…God…Liz…” came his voice, full of sorrow, full of pity. She grew rigid and turned away. She would finish; she didn’t come this far to turn back now.

Whether she wanted to hear it or not, whether he did or not, she would tell him the truth.


<center>****</center>


Max knew what was coming, he did. Without her even saying it. She had a son, and no boyfriend in sight. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what happened to her.

She looked so small, so fragile, he wanted to pull her in his arms and kiss her tears away. He wanted so much, maybe too much, maybe more than she would be willing to offer.

How could anyone…he couldn’t wrap his mind around it. All he could do was sit and listen to her soft voice, retell the events no woman should ever have to suffer through.

“It was a rainy night. I left work a little later than usual, and instead of going home for dinner, I stopped off and grabbed some Chinese. I waited for the order and then ran through the puddles, I was two blocks…two…but I never made it there. It happened so fast, I couldn’t scream, I couldn’t think. I felt cold, wet hands wrap around me, over my mouth and my waist. I just remember thinking, this isn’t happening, it can’t be. The ground was cold and wet…I was so scared, but there was no one to hear me, no one to save me…” her voice filled with tears, her shoulders shaking and Max was on his knees in front of her.

He reached out a hand to touch her, but thought better of it. Instead he sat back on the floor next to her and listened with a heavy heart.

“I could feel him tug on my clothes. I could hear over the rain the sound of my dress ripping, his hands…it was awful. And all I could do was cry. I don’t remember too much after that, because I got free and managed to scream, but he hit me with something and I passed out. I thank God everyday that he hit me, everyday, so I don’t have to remember.” Liz turned to him, looking for something…what was it? Understanding? He didn’t know, but he felt angry to the point of wanting to ask her if they’d found the person that did it, because if they didn’t he would make it his life’s mission to do so.

He couldn’t imagine anyone taking advantage of her, she was so tiny and…God…his anger furled into rage.

“Did they find him, Liz? Tell me they did…”

“Yes, they did. I woke up and I’d forgotten what was even happening, but I saw him, he kneeling in front of me, the rain had stopped it seemed. I tried to scream, but I couldn’t, my nerves were shot and I was shaking all over. I looked around for something to hit him with, anything…and that’s when I saw it. The object he’d hit me over the head with.” Liz stopped and stood up, wrapping her arms around herself, and Max followed right behind her.

“I killed him.”

His first inclination was to say, “Good, the son of a bitch deserved it.” But that wasn’t what she needed to hear.

“How?” he asked he ask cautiously, one step behind her.

“The gun was right beside me, I wasn’t thinking, I tried to clear my head…I couldn’t. So…I reached for it…and I…I lifted it to him and pulled the trigger. Afterwards, they took me to the hospital. I sat in therapy for months. I’m not over it, but I’m much better.”

“Liz, I don’t think you’ll ever be over it.”

“I know. Especially since I have a piece of that night with me forever.” Max narrowed his eyes in confusion and then it hit him. And if it hadn’t, the sounds of a baby crying in the next room would have tipped him off.

“Your son.” Liz nodded and excused herself. When she returned she was cradling a bundle in her arms and Max couldn’t hold back his own tears.

She kissed her son’s head gently before turning and looking up at Max with a nervous smile.

“Max, I’d like you to meet my son, Jeremy.” Liz reached out and handed her son to him. Max took him immediately and cradled him in his arms.

“God, he’s so beautiful, Liz.” Max smiled down at Jeremy as he yawned and stretched.

“How did you decide?” Max asked a few minutes later as they settled on the edge of her bed.

“I saw this woman on the way in on the stretcher, she was in labor. Her husband was beside her, and I closed my eyes and I wondered if one day I’d be a mother. If I’d have a husband, someone, anyone that would love me enough.”

Max rocked Jeremy gently back to sleep and Liz leaned over and rested her hand on her son’s head.

“They gave me the pill to take, the one that would insure I didn’t stay pregnant if I was, but I couldn’t take it. I thought, this happened for a reason and I wasn’t trying to be brave or anything, I just thought if this is God’s will, then I had to accept it. Besides, I figured it was my first time, what were the odds of me getting pregnant?”

Max gasped audibly and placed Jeremy down on the bed, he then without another word, pulled Liz into his lap. It might not have been welcomed but he needed to comfort her.

“I think you are the bravest person I have ever known.” Max kissed her temple; he felt her tense but then relax. One day, he vowed, she’d be comfortable enough for him to hold her anytime, anyplace. He lived for that moment now.

“I’m not,” she cried.

“You are,” he protested gently.

“Liz, you didn’t have to tell me. But I’m glad you did, it helps me understand you. I just wish I didn’t put your back against the wall. I’m so sorry for that. You weren’t ready to tell me, I shouldn’t have pushed.”

“It’s okay. I wanted to tell you. I did. I just didn’t know when the right time was.”

“There is no right time, I guess. Thank you.” Max held her tighter and she let him.

“Are you mad at me for lying?” she asked, her voice small and fragile.

“Liz, I was never mad at you, I knew there was something you weren’t telling me. But…to be honest, I’m not sure there is anything you could do that would make stay mad at you for very long.” Max smiled and swiped the tears from her eyes.

After a few moments of silence Max asked, “When you found out you were pregnant, did you change your mind?”

“I did, several times. At the hospital it was one thing because I didn’t believe I was pregnant, but then a month later I knew I was. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t have a job because I just couldn’t go back. I had money saved but it wasn’t going to last forever. I wasn’t going to keep it, but then I couldn’t kill it either. So I decided I would give it up for adoption, it wasn’t the baby’s fault and it was a part of me. And the more I thought of him that way, the more I realized I could love this baby. This baby was me, different scenario but same effect. He would grow up alone in the world because I didn’t love him enough to forgive the man that raped me and created him. Just like my father didn’t love me enough to forgive me for my mother’s death. I couldn’t do it, I knew there was a reason why I was pregnant and it was to have him and to love him as his only parent.”

“Just like me.” Max said, looking up into her eyes, watching as fresh tears streamed down her face.

“Yeah.” Liz smiled despite the pain he could feel radiating off of her.

“I’m sorry I keep crying.”

“Don’t apologize to me Liz. You don’t ever have to apologize to me for that.” It was on the tip of his tongue, words that he’d never said to any woman in his life. But in a way, he did love her for so many reasons, but it was all too soon and too much right now.

“It’s going to be weird.”

“What’s that?” she tensed up but he held her tighter.

“Thinking of you with a son.”

“Why’s that?”

“Because I don’t know you as a mother.”

She looked down at him, turning slightly to look over his shoulder. He followed her gaze and it landed right on Jeremy who was fast asleep. Turning back to her, he smiled and kissed her cheek.

“I think I’d love to get to know you as a mother.”

“What are you saying?” she asked, surprise evident in her voice. Did she think he wouldn’t want to see her?

“I’m saying, that not only do you owe me cooking lessons, but another date.”

“Max, I don’t know…”

“What was my company that bad?” he joked lightly, trying to take her mind off of things, as hard as that might be.

“No, I told you it was great. But, I don’t know about…”

“About?” he hedged on, nudging her gently.

“Dating someone like you.”

“Someone like me?” he grew concerned.

“Yeah,” she sighed. “Max, you’re a guy.”

“Last time I checked, and seeing as you’re a girl, that’s a good thing. Go on.”

She blushed, he loved to see her blush, he’d decided. “That’s the thing, you are used to girls and I’m not used to guys.” Max nodded his head. He understood exactly what her concerns were. He would want a physical relationship but she might not be ready. He would have to set her mind frame straight.

“Liz, we can go as slow as you need to. I might be a guy, but I’m a very patient one and I would never pressure you into something you weren’t ready for. So if you just want to hang out, and spend time together a few days a week or just on the weekends, whatever you want will be enough for me.”

“I can’t ask you to do that.”

“You’re not asking me, Liz. It’s your choice, okay?” he asked sincerely and she nodded. He wouldn’t ask for an answer tonight, she needed time. He didn’t want to leave her, and told her as much.

“Why not?”

“I don’t know.”

“You pity me now don’t you?” she asked sliding from his lap, he held her still.

“No. Never. I would never pity you. I just don’t want to leave you because I like holding you.” Which was the truth, but it was also because she needed to be held. She needed someone next to her when she woke up from a nightmare, he wondered if she had nightmares. He had time to find out, plenty of time if he had his way.

“Why don’t you stop by tomorrow for breakfast. I’ll make you something special.”

“Really?” he said perking up a bit.

“Yes. And then bring Trevor for dinner, if you don’t mind eating in my small kitchen, I’d like to make you both dinner.”

“Oh he’ll love that.” Max smiled but felt the coolness of his clothes for the first time as she stood from him lap.

“I guess I should get going. I have to pick up Trevor still. Here’s my number, if you want to talk, anytime.” He emphasized ‘anytime’.

Liz smiled and took his card. “Thank you, Max.”

“You’re welcome. Should I take the window again?” he smirked and she slapped his arm playfully and pushed him towards the door.

“No, you’d probably fall and I’d feel awful.” Liz said as she picked Jeremy up. They made their way down the hall past Maria who was sound asleep on the couch.

“Good night, Liz.” Max turned and leaned in to kiss her cheek once again. He closed his eyes and memorized the feel of her skin beneath his lips.

“Night, Max. I’ll see you tomorrow.” Max stepped outside and realized for the first time, there really was a front entrance to the place. With an extra bounce in his step he made a beeline for his car. His thoughts however were still with Liz, wondering if she would truly be all right.

No matter what though, he thought, he would be there for her every step of the way.


<center>****</center>


“So Juliet, I see Romeo climbed through your window. How did it go?” came Maria’s sleepy voice in the darkness.

Liz jumped a little but smiled and turned on the light.

“Yes, he did. And you were right, he wasn’t angry and he didn’t take pity on me.”

“Liz, I am so happy for you. I knew he belonged in the winner box.” Liz smiled at Maria’s category.

“So are there future plans in the making?”

Liz shrugged her shoulder, and said, “Not really, he’s coming by for breakfast tomorrow.”

“You are so bad!”

“I am not! I just wanted to thank him, you know. He was so good to me, and Maria, I think—” she paused nibbling on her bottom lip.

“You think?’

“I think I really like him.”

“I already knew that, give me something more.”

“I care about him, is that weird?” Liz scrunched up her nose in consideration.

“Not at all. Liz, you shared a really difficult time in your life with him, besides that he treats you really well. He’s honest and he loves his son to pieces. I think he’s what you need. Not to say you aren’t strong enough to be without a man, but…” Maria paused, too long for Liz’s tastes.

“But?”

“I think, when you’re ready, Max will be the perfect candidate to show you how special you really are.” Liz blushed. Normally any thought of intimacy would turn her frigid, but for some reason the thought of Max, made her feel…warm inside.

“Good night, Maria.”

“Night Juliet!” Maria called back stifling a yawn. It was really late, and sleep would maybe for the first time in a long time, come easily to Liz.

She couldn’t wait.


TBC…
Last edited by Behrsgirl77 on Sat Feb 17, 2007 9:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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