Blood and Water

He did it. The sonofabitch actually left my fingerprints on the knife.

I stared at the back of the deputy's head, waiting for him to turn around, waiting to hear the smart remark in my head. His eyes flickered up to the rear view mirror and narrowed. "Something on your mind, son?" He asked.

I pursed my lips and scowled, staring out the window. I wasn't saying anything. If he was Nasedo, I'd know soon enough. I was getting the feeling Nasedo liked having me for an audience. If he wasn't Nasedo, he thought I was a murderer, and nothing I said would make any difference.

That's what you are, the voice in my head whispered. Murderer. Liar. Murderer…

I blinked and tried to shake it off. Thinking like that wouldn't help. Valenti's not gonna let you take the fall for this. He said he'd protect you…

I frowned, staring out the window, realizing the squad car was just about to pass the crashdown. Shame washed over me like a sudden wave and I slouched down immediately so no one inside would see me. Once we circled the corner, I looked up at the rear view mirror. The deputy was staring at me, watching my reaction.

Trying to see if I had something to hide.

I looked down at my hands, my nerves singing with the urge to let go, get out, run, just run…I clenched my hands together tightly and stared out the window. After a minute I felt his gaze move away from me.

"Here we are," He said.


Sometimes it's good to have friends in law enforcement.

Valenti had a whole cover set up before Hanson ever brought me in. He'd backdated a report. I was in the clear. I walked past the deputies who were answering phones, slamming cabinets shut, muttering over files, arguing over coffee. When did Valenti hire all these guys, I thought. It'd just been him and a couple other guys for years now…

One of the deputies moved right in front of me. I almost ran into him. I stepped to the side and he moved again, blocking my way. I glared at him. "Is there a problem?" I asked quietly.

"'Officer'," He said, tapping his pencil down on his clipboard and looking up at me. "Is there a problem. Officer."

I stared at him for a moment, waiting for the voice to resonate through my mind, waiting for the snide remark. It didn't come. He cocked his head to the side.

"I don't know who you think you're dealing with," He said quietly, moving closer to me, staring down at his clipboard. His voice was almost a whisper. "But we're on to you."

I pursed my lips and held my hands up. "Hey," I shrugged. "You got the wrong guy."

"Don't think so," He said evenly, looking up again. "I just can't prove it yet."

I started to smirk, shaking my head and walking around him, when I heard it.

Absolute silence.

Everyone in the room was staring at me. All of them. With that look that said we know you did it...

My smirk skipped. I felt my heart speed up and blinked hard. They don't have anything on you. Nothing. Valenti took care of it…

I glanced back at the deputy. His lips were curled in a smile, but his eyes were cold and hard. "I wouldn't leave town, Mr. Guerin," He said, his voice flat and unreadable. "Understand?"


I stared at the receiver in my hand, blinking hard in the sunlight. If I called from my house, they could track it. And they'd just said they were watching me…

I didn't have any choice. I hadn't felt Nasedo in the room at all. If the cops were tailing me, it'd just be a matter of time before they started following Max and Is. Or Tess. And somebody'd slip up eventually. Bet he didn't have that in mind when he planted my knife, I thought. Stupid. And reckless. Now he had the cops all over me -

I picked up the receiver and punched the numbers to Nasedo's cell. It was his mess.

Let him clean it up.


I covered the doorknob to my apartment with my palm, feeling the energy pulse through my veins and out through my fingertips, hearing the snik of the lock as it turned back. I slammed it shut behind me, moving to the couch and slumping down in a heap, covering my face with my hands.


My hands dropped and I stood up fast. Liz was standing in the corner of the room. My heart lurched for a second. She was smiling, crossing the room to me, she looked so scared and so happy all at once...

How did she get in?

I blinked and took a step back. The door was locked. And you don't know if he can shape-shift into a woman …

"Get out," I said, scowling. She stopped where she was. The smile disappeared from her face.

"I was - I was worried," She said gently. "Michael, are you -"

"I want you out," I demanded. "Now." The heat was rolling in my hands -

"Michael," She said softly, shaking her head. "It's me -"

"How'd you get in, Nasedo?" I asked, taking a step toward her.

She stepped back. "Michael, you're scaring me -"

I moved faster than I thought I could, grabbing her by the shoulders and moving her back until her body slammed against the wall, knocking the breath out of her body, clenching my hand over her throat. "Tell me how you got in here," I repeated. The fire was raging in my hands, blistering my skin from the inside out, screaming to let go, let it out, let go…

Her hands were covering mine. "Michael," She whispered. "Don't -"

"You have three seconds," I whispered. "One. Two -"

She whispered something I could barely hear. I stared down at her for a moment, trying to process the words, forcing my grip to relax slightly. "What?"

She pointed behind me. "The window," She whispered, her breath ragged. I let go of her throat, backing up and turning around.

The end of the bedsheet covering the window billowed out slightly, revealing the shattered window pane behind it.


I stared at the window, stunned. Glass was shattered all around the floor. Idiot. You idiot. You use your powers to lock the door, and all they had to do was break the window -

I heard a sound behind me and turned around. She was leaning against the wall, her hands covering her throat -

"Oh, God," I whispered, moving back to her. "I'm sorry. Liz, I'm sorry -"

She shook her head, backing away from me. "It's okay," She whispered, clearing her throat. "It's okay."

My heart sank. She backed away from me…

Of course she did, Guerin. You were just ready to kill her. Probably scared her to death -

"Can I -" She swallowed and shook her head again. "Can I have some water?"

I nodded, mute, moving quickly to the kitchen, getting a glass out and holding it under the faucet.

"I was worried," She said quietly, sitting down on the couch. "When I saw that deputy take you, I -" Her voice faltered and she started again. "I called Valenti, and he said they were bringing you in. That they'd found some kind of evidence at the site…"

I closed my eyes and turned the faucet off. "They did," I said, turning around and snorting back a laugh. "My knife. With my fingerprints on it."

She stared across the room at me. "This isn't funny, Michael," She whispered.

"You think?" I asked, gripping the glass tighter. "I think it's pretty damn hysterical."

She was shaking her head. "Michael…"

"Michael, the screw-up," I snarled. The fire was back in my hands, searing up through my skin, the white-hot fire blurring my vision... "Michael, who leaves his fingerprints all over the crime site, so the sheriff has to make up fake reports. Michael who almost kills you because you climbed through a window -"

Something in me snapped. I heard a noise, like something shattering...

Her eyes were wide "Michael," She whispered.

I blinked, clearing my vision, trying to focus. There was a weird sound, one I couldn't identify. Something like… dripping…

I stared down at the floor. Glass shards lay in a wide arc on the floor. Water was spreading across the linoleum in clear streaks, carrying tiny slivers of glass with it. I blinked again, staring down. It doesn't look right, I thought. It doesn't look like water -

Because of the blood, I thought, watching the dark liquid gather like rain droplets on my fingertips, splashing down into the widening pool of water, tinting it red and then pink, tiny swaths of color in liquid nothingness -

"Michael," Liz whispered, falling down next to me. "Hold still."

"What…" I stared down at the floor, at my hand. My tongue felt strange. Wrong. Thick, and heavy. "Did I do that?"

"Yes," She whispered hurriedly, her tiny hand closing over my wrist, staring at the gashes on my hand. "Yeah, you - you did. We have to get you cleaned up."

I shook my head, staring down at the floor, trying to pull my hand out of her grasp and failing. "I have to pick it up," I whispered. My voice sounded wrong, too. Small and far away -

"Michael, I have to get the glass out of your hand before I can clean the cuts," She said quickly, her voice sharp and determined. "Come on."

I tore my gaze away from the floor and looked over at her. She looked scared. And determined. I missed looking at her, I thought. Just watching her, watching the way she moves -

"Michael," She said, her voice high and trembling. "I need you to hold still so I can get the glass out. Okay?"

I stared at her for a second and then nodded, mute, letting her take my wrists in her hands. I watched her fingers move over my skin, clutching the tiny, sharp slivers and tugging gently. I didn't feel a thing. And I didn't understand.

All I knew is that she was taking care of me again.


"Hold still," I whispered, staring down at his palm, moving it left and then right, trying to catch the reflections of glass in the light... "I think I got it all."

"Good," He said faintly. I glanced up at him. He was staring at my eyes. Our eyes locked for a moment and I turned back to work. "The cuts aren't deep," I said, standing up. "Come on. We need to run water over the cuts. Michael, come on."

He moved away from the counter slowly, his body swaying slightly and I caught him, wrapping my arm around his waist. "This way," I murmured, maneuvering our steps over the glass, leading him to the sink. "There we go." I let him lean against the counter and turned the faucet on, running the water over his hand and wrist, following the trail of water with my fingertips, brushing away the tiny slivers of glass until I was sure it was all gone, until all I could feel was his skin…

I reached for a towel, wished it was cleaner, and wrapped it around his hand anyway, patting his skin dry. I think that's it. I think that's all I can do… I breathed in deeply and stood up straight. "Okay," I whispered. "I think you're -"

"God, you're beautiful," He whispered suddenly.

My heart skipped a beat and I turned to look up at him. His eyes were so warm, and soft, and -

I frowned suddenly, looking down. My hands were shaking. "You're in shock," I whispered, turning off the faucet. He smiled a little and nodded, his head bobbing as if he were drunk.

"Yeah," He whispered. He stood up and moved closer to me, separating the distance between us, raising his hand and touching my cheek gently…

"But you're still beautiful," He whispered.

I stared up at him. Neither one of us moved. "You better sit down," I whispered.

He stared down at me and nodded, his eyes closing. I wrapped my arm around his waist again and moved him to the couch, helping him sit down, turning him to lay back against on the cushions. He fell asleep within minutes. I reached out and brushed the hair back from his forehead, listening to the rhythym of his breathing.

We stayed like that for hours, and for the first time in days, I felt like I was home.


It was dark when I finally woke up. I reached down to push my body off the couch and winced immediately, bringing my hand off the couch to take a better look. It was wrapped up in some sort of cloth -

"That was the cleanest thing I could find," I heard her say softly. She was staring at me from the kitchen, her hand on her hip. "You should really get a first aid kit."

I stared at her for a moment and shook my head. "Waste of money," I mumbled. I sat up, pushing myself up with my good hand and standing up. "Max can always heal me."

"Max wasn't here," She said, her voice sharp.

I frowned. "Right," I mumbled. "Thanks."

She stared at me for a moment and bit down on her lip. "You're welcome," She said stiffly, turning back to the kitchen. I walked toward her and stopped at the counter. Her back was tense, her movements quick and jerky.

"Liz -"

"You could have really hurt yourself, Michael," She said, her back still turned to me, her voice choked. "You can't - you can't let things get that intense. It's not fair. And, and it's dangerous," She said. "I mean, Nasedo's around, and you have to be careful, and -"

"Liz," I interrupted. She took a breath and turned around, looking up at me. I swallowed and licked my lips.

"You're, uhm - you're right," I said quietly. She blinked, surprised. A smile started to tug at her lips -

"And you should go," I said evenly.

The smile faltered and faded. "What?" She asked, staring up at me. "Michael, you just - you just lost a lot of blood. I can't -"

"You're right. It's not fair," I said, ignoring her, walking around the counter toward her. "And I'm sorry. I wish it was different. But it's not."

She took one step back and then another, stopping when her back hit the cabinets behind her. "And it is dangerous," I said, taking a breath. "I'm dangerous. I think we just proved that."

"Michael -"

"So you should go," I said, my voice getting stronger. "Now."

She stared up at me. "Michael - what about you?" She whispered.

"I can take care of myself," I shrugged. "It's other people I have a problem with."

"Look," She said, getting that determined look on her face. "Michael, I know that you're upset, and -"

"You cleaned me up," I said, closing the distance between us, stopping in front of her. "Thank you."

She looked down, her hands fluttering nervously over her dress. "You're welcome," She whispered, looking up at me.

I nodded. "Good," I said.

"Now get out."


I stood in the doorway of the crashdown, numb and cold. I stepped through and let the door close behind me.

You think you're not worthy
I'd have to say I agree
I'm not worthy of you
you're not worthy of me…

"Hey, Liz," Maria called out, brushing past me and stopping suddenly. "Whoa. What's wrong with you?"

"What?" I asked, looking over at her. "Nothing. Nothing."

"Uh huh," She said, throwing an arm around my shoulder and moving me over to the counter. "You saw him, didn't you?"

I sat down slowly and stared up at her. "What?"

She rolled her eyes. "Max," She murmured. "You saw him, didn't you? He told me. You look like you've seen a ghost."

"No, I -" I shook my head. "It's not that. It's just…"

which of us is deserving
look at the human race
the whole planet at arm's length
and we don't deserve this place…

"Where'd you get this?" I asked, pointing at the speakers.

"Oh," She shrugged. "Isabel brought it in. Ann something."

"Ani," I muttered under my breath, staring at the firmica countertop.

Maria waved her hands next to me. "Whatever," She said. "Okay, tell me everything."

What good is a poker face
when you've got an open hand
I was supposed to be cool about this
Yeah, I remember cool was the plan

"Look, it's - it's nothing," I murmured. "Can we just drop it?"

"Ooookay," She said, shrugging her shoulders. "If that's how you wanna play it…" She sighed. "Look, I gotta get this table. I'll be back in a sec."

"Fine," I whispered.

She paused, her hand coming down on my shoulders softly. "Look, Liz - you might as well give in to it," She said gently. "You know you're never going to get over him."

I didn't say anything. After a moment I felt her move away, sweeping through the restaurant.

"I know," I whispered, biting down on my lip. My throat was burning and my eyes were closing and I could feel the tears welling up and oh, God…

I tried to keep it all under wraps
but the wraps kept going slack
I keep turning round
And I keep coming back…


I moved my hand over the broken pane and watched the pieces seep into each other, forming a solid square. When I relaxed my hand it was fixed. I clenched my hand into a fist gingerly and released it, staring at the skin. It was still tender but healing quickly. Faster than it would for a human…

I couldn't remember everything that happened. It was all - hazy, sort of. I remembered images, like a sudden snapshot. Liz helping me up, her arm around my waist. Her fingertips moving over my palm through cool water. Low murmurs of her voice, something about holding still…

I rubbed my good hand over my face. I remembered standing right next to her and telling her something, and it made her eyes soften and light up…

And I remembered threatening to kill her. That was permanently seared on my memory.

Maybe things really were better this way. If I wasn't around Liz, I couldn't hurt her. Any way I looked at it, she'd be safer without me around. Maybe Nasedo was right. Maybe we shouldn't mix with them. Then at least they won't get hurt…

At least she left without arguing, I thought. She'd looked too stunned to argue, staring up at me for a moment before she turned and walked to the door, leaving it open behind her...

I closed my eyes and clenched my teeth against my cheek. I had to do it. I had to do something…

No word from Nasedo. Nothing from Max. And the thought of spending another night jumping at shadows made me want to break something. If Nasedo showed up, I'd deal with him when he got here.

I took a breath, looking around the room one more time before lying down on the couch and pulling the sheet over my body.

Ten minutes later, every police car in Roswell was outside my apartment, and Valenti was reading me my rights.


"I want a lawyer," I said to the deputy next to me. "And my phone call."

"You mentioned that," He muttered, picking up my hand and rolling my index finger over the black, ink-stained pad. "Five or six times." He let go of my hand and tossed a cloth at me. "Come on."

I rubbed the cloth over my fingertips and threw it down on the counter as we passed. He stopped in front of a camera. "Step around, behind the line," He said, gesturing at the mark on the floor. I stood in front of it. One of the other deputies handed me a square pad with my name and a number on it. "Face forward," The deputy said.

I swallowed and stared straight ahead, staring into the lens of the camera. The lightbulb went off, covering everything in brightness for a second. I blinked hard.

"Face left," He called out, his voice flat. I moved to the side and the flash went off again.

This isn't happening, I thought. This isn't happening…

"Face right," He called out. I looked over at him as I turned, taking a breath and waiting for the flash.

"We're done," He said, his hands moving over the camera. "You can sit."

I put the sign down and crossed over to the chairs lined up against the wall. Valenti wasn't around. I had no idea where he was. Last I saw of him, he was off talking to Whitaker. Damnit -

"Come on," one of the deputies said, moving past me. "Let's go."

I stood up and followed him down the hallway, hearing another person's footsteps behind me. Another guard. In case I tried something on the one in front of me…

He opened a door to a flight of stairs and I followed him down, turning into a corridor at the next floor down, stopping short when I saw the jail cells. The deputy in front of me moved to the third cell, sorting through his keys and unlocking the door, turning around to look at me.

"Go on," He said, glaring at me.

I stared up at him for a second and then stepped into the room, staring at the bars. I was still looking around when I heard the clang of the door and the sound of the lock turning. I didn't even hear them leave.

I'd never heard a sound like that before in my life.

I looked around at the bunkbed, the stained mattresses, the iron bars lining the small, high window…

"How're you doing?"

I turned around. Valenti stood there, turning his hat over in his hands, his fingertips circling the brim. I stared at him for a second and breathed out, shaking my head.

"Great," I muttered, gripping one of the bars. "Fanfrickin'tastic."

He nodded slowly, looking down at his hat and taking a breath.

"I'm guessing this isn't something we should discuss," I said carefully.

The hat stopped in his hands and then started moving again. "Not at the moment," He said carefully. I pursed my lips and nodded.

"I came down here because I heard that you wanted to make a phone call," He said quietly.

"Yeah," I said slowly. "So?"

He looked at me evenly. "You might want to let someone else make that call," He said, staring down at his hat. Turn. Turn. "More privacy that way."

"That's, uhm - that's a good idea," I said slowly. "Thanks."

He shook his head, staring down at his hat. He looked up again. "We're gonna fix this, Michael," He said quietly, his voice a fierce whisper. "You know that."

I looked around the cell. "Sure," I mumbled. "Right. I know."

He glanced up at me for a second. "I'll see you in the morning," He said quietly, bringing his hat up and putting it on. I listened to his footsteps fade down the hallway. The door to the corridor creaked loudly as he opened it. The slam of the lock reverberated through the hallway, and then everything was silent.

I didn't let go of the bars until the lights shut off all at once. I could still feel my hands shaking. They'd been doing that ever since they walked me down here…

Breathe, Guerin. Breathe.


I was almost asleep when I heard the phone ring. I fumbled with my sheets and launched myself out of bed, running to get it before Mom or Dad did -

"Hello," I muttered, punching the talk button on the cordless. "Hello?"

"Liz," Max said, his voice surrounded by static. "It's me."

My voice died in my throat and I tried to swallow. My mouth was dry. "Uhm," I whispered. "Hello. Hi. What's -

"Michael's been arrested," He said quietly.

"What?" I whispered, pushing my hair out of my face. "What are you talking about -"

"Valenti just picked him up," He said.

"What, so - so he's in jail?" I whispered, starting to pace. "Are they going to keep him there? I mean -"

"There's nothing we can do tonight," He said quickly. "We need to meet tomorrow. All of us. Can we use the crashdown?"

"Yes," I said quickly. "Of course. That's -"

"Nasedo's going to be there," He said. "I want you to be sure."

I didn't say anything for a second. "Yes," I said quickly. "Fine. Yes."

"I'll tell everyone. Tomorrow. Ten o'clock," He said, his voice tense. "And Liz - Whitaker was there. When they took him."

"What?" I whispered. "Why was she -"

"I don't know. I'll talk to you tomorrow. Bye."

I looked down at the receiver, listening to the dial tone. He'd been arrested. What if it wasn't really Valenti? What if it was Nasedo? I sat down on the bed. But that didn't make sense - not if Whitaker was there, I thought frantically. They'd already brought him in today and released him, and Valenti had made up some story to help him get out…

I stared down at the phone. Michael had called Max. Not me. Max…

What did you expect, Liz?


"Guerin," Someone snapped. I opened my eyes and sat up quickly, stumbling through my disorientation. I looked up at the deputy glaring down at me and ran my hand over my face. Focus, Guerin. They picked you up last night…

"You asked for a lawyer," He muttered, unlocking the door and swinging it open, jerking his head toward the hallway. "Come on."


I stared across the table at my lawyer, a black guy in a suit. He was scribbling something down on a pad of paper.

"Mr. Guerin," He said. "Please, sit down." He flipped through a manilla folder, scanning the pages. "Let's see… so you're being held for murder," He said slowly. "Is that right?"

I scowled and looked around the room. "Yeah," I muttered. "Right."

"Did you do it?"

I jerked back around to look at him. "What?"

He shrugged. "Did you do it? I have to know what we're going to plead."

I ground the heels of my hands against my eyes. This had seemed like a good idea last night, when they were dragging me in and everyone was staring at me. "Look, I don't - I don't think I want this," I muttered, shrugging at him. "Sorry."

"You're declining my services?" He asked, surprised.

"I'm firing you," I snapped, standing up suddenly. Through the window of the door I saw the guard shift his weight, watching me. I licked my lips. "Look, I'm sorry, but… this isn't gonna work," I said, staring down at him.

He leaned back in his chair, staring up at me. "You're very angry," He said quietly.

I glared at him. "Yeah. So what?"

He pursed his lips and shrugged. "I hope you have someone on your side," He said easily, tossing the manilla folder back into his briefcase and snapping the locks shut.

"Doesn't matter," I muttered, looking out the window. Some kids were playing outside.

{That's all that matters, Michael.}

It was almost a relief.

I looked over at him. He was glaring at me, his hands folded over his chest.

"I was wondering when you were going to show up," I mumured.


His eyes flickered over to the guard and then back to me. "Alright," He said, leaning forward. "Now that we've got that straightened out, let's look over your strategy -"

"I don't think you heard me," I said, placing my hands on the table and leaning over it, staring at him. "You're. Fired."

He stared up at me. {Don't be stupid, Michael.}

{It can't be any worse without you. You're the one who put me here in the first place.}

{I had my reasons. Michael, you're part of a team, and you have to think of them first -}

"What," I whispered. "You mean the way you do?"

I shifted my weight fast, shoving the table back, pinning it against his chest, driving him back until he hit the wall. His chair flew out from under him and he struggled to stay upright. I heard the guard yelling something and focused on the doorknob, willing it to lock. His hands turned back and forth over it uselessly.

"Michael, don't be stupid -"

"Go ahead," I hissed. "Use your powers. You know you want to. Slam me back into the wall," I whispered, slamming the table against him again, knocking the breath out of him. "Come on!"

"What do you think you're doing," He whispered, his voice desperate. Blood flecked the edges of his mouth. "What's wrong with you -"

I thought of Liz, backed against the wall, my hand over her throat. You made me into this, I thought. You did -

Several deputies were banging on the door now, yelling at me to let him go, to back down.

"Lesson one," I whispered. "Never let an opponent get the upper hand."

His eyes opened wide and I slammed the table back against him again, feeling the crack and snap of his ribs giving way under the pressure -

His body lurched forward and slumped over the table. I stood up, letting go of the table and backing up, staring down at him. The door opened and slammed back against the wall.

I felt the crack of something over my skull, and everything went black.


"What the hell was that, Michael?" Valenti demanded, pacing in front of me. "Please. Explain it to me."

I sighed and brought the ice pack up to the side of my head. "It was Nasedo," I muttered, wincing.

"Which explains nothing," Valenti snapped, turning around. "That was a stupid stunt, Michael -"

"Hey, you don't know anything about it," I shot back, pulling myself up off the cot.

"Like hell," He roared, stopping in front of me. "Do you -" He shook his head. When he spoke again, it was through his teeth. "You know how many deputies it took to open that door, Michael?

I shrugged. "Three," I guessed.

"Try six," He snapped. "You want even more attention on you, Michael? More scrutiny? Is that what you want?"

I stared down at the floor. "Forget it," I mumbled, sitting back down, rolling the ice pack in my hands. "You wouldn't understand."

He glared down at me. "You're right, Michael," He said, his voice low, crouching until he was looking up at me. "I don't get it. If it was Nasedo, I don't understand why you'd attack him. I don't understand why you'd make yourself suspicious, validate yourself as a hostile suspect, risk assault on a police officer -"

"I didn't touch them," I snapped. "None of them."

"I know," He murmured, pursing his lips and looking at the lump on my head. "You didn't get a chance."

I glanced up at him. "If I wanted them hurt, they would be," I said. "You know that."

We stared at each other for a moment and he nodded. "Yeah," He muttered, sighing. "I know. Look, Michael - I want this over as much as you do. But you can't do that again."

"What happened to him?" I asked.

"The lawyer?" Valenti asked, smirking a little. "Well. He, uhm - he said he was fine. Didn't want to press charges." He snorted. "He said it was just a misunderstanding."

"He what?"

"Yeah," Valenti said, standing up and looking out the window. "He said…"


He looked back down at me. "He said he should've seen it coming," He said thoughtfully. He frowned. "Now that I think about it, he almost sounded…"

"Dangerous?" I demanded. I stood up too quickly and reached blindly for the top bunk, steadying myself. "If that's it, sheriff, then you've got to protect -"

"I was going to say proud," He interrupted, looking out the window. He turned back to face me. "That make any sense to you, Michael?"

I stared at him for a second before shaking my head. "No," I said.

He regarded me for a second and shook his head. "I'm late for a meeting," He muttered, moving past me. "No more fights. You got it?"

I smiled a little. "Yeah," I muttered, touching the lump on my head. "Got it."

"Good," He muttered, walking out the cell door, pulling it shut behind him with a clang. "State doesn't have a furniture account."


I stood at landing of the stairs, listening to them talk.

"How much do you know about Congressman Whitaker?" Max asked.

"I know her intimately," Nasedo said.

"Intimately?" A high voice asked. That would be Tess, I thought.

"To borrow a rather crude human colloquialism," Nasedo announced, "I've been diddling her all summer."

I was stunned. He wasn't. He couldn't -

Why not? The voice in my head whispered. You and Michael did. Why should it be any different with Nasedo?

Because it is, I argued back, closing my eyes, feeling the wave of nausea wash over me. She didn't even know. She thought she was with Pierce…

"I must admit, I've grown awfully fond of the foul temptress," He continued. I could hear the smirk in his voice. "It's a shame I may now have to kill her."

I felt my pulse speed up. His voice didn't even change. He was talking about murdering her, like it was nothing, like he didn't have any second thoughts about it -

"Pierce's bones have been dug up," Max said, his voice sharp. "Apparently some of them have been fused in a way that is completely unexplainable by human terms."

"Tell me how far this information has been leaked," Nasedo said immediately. That got his attention. "I need to extinguish every human who has this information."

"I'm going to assume present company is excluded?" Someone demanded. Alex -

I'd heard enough. This was still my house. I walked down the last few steps and felt them look up at my approach, moving to stand in front of Nasedo. A faint smirk flickered across his lips.

"Isn't murder what got you into this situation to begin with?" I challenged, staring up at him.

He pursed his lips. {Actually - you are what got us into this situation, Miss Parker.} His eyes flickered down my body and back up again. {Nice dress.}

My breath caught and I backed up. Just like that. He was back in my head, and there was nothing I could do about it -

"My job is to protect the royal four," He said, staring around the room. "Their survival is critical to the survival of an entire race."

"No one's going to die," Max said. "Killing people isn't going to solve anything."

Nasedo's eyebrows shot up. "Oh, my," He smirked. "A pacifist for a king. Shall we all just commit joint suicide right now, or shall we wait for our enemies to show up and have a nice boxed lunch of us?"

"We're not killing anyone," Max repeated, his eyes locked on Nasedo. "That's an order."

Something in the room changed. Tess looked from Nasedo to Max and back again. Nasedo cocked his head to the side, staring at Max. "As you wish," He said finally.

I swallowed. The royal four. As you wish. He was treating Max like he was a king…

"The feds know about cadmium-x," Nasedo said carefully. "If they find it on the bones, their first order of business will be to do to Michael what they did to you in the white room."

Everybody looked at Max. "We can't let that happen," He said quietly. Frustration and fear flickered across his face.

"Where are the bones now?" Nasedo demanded.

Valenti cleared his throat. "Whitaker took them out of the coroner's office," He said. "I don't know where they are."

"Even if we knew where they were, what would we do with them?" Isabel asked suddenly. "Hiding them isn't going to solve the problem."

"I know what to do," Max said evenly. It took me a second to realize he was staring at me.

"When do you work today?" He asked.


"Parker, go home," Whitaker said. "It's late."

"No, it's - it's okay," I insisted, turning to the open cabinet, my fingertips flying over the files. This had to work. "I want to make sure you're organized."

"I don't want to be hit with a child labor suit," She said. I think she was smiling.

"I promise," I said weakly, focusing on another file. I heard the front door opening and the tread of footsteps.

"Agent Pierce," She said behind me. Her voice had changed. She sounded - bitter. And surprised.

"Just Daniel," Nasedo said, his voice warm and charming. "I'm a civilian now."

"This is Liz Parker," Whitaker said. I turned around quickly, trying to smile. "She's my new intern." Pierce grinned down at me, a smirk slipping across his lips. "Pleasure," He said softly. I mumbled a hello and turned back to the files.

"So, what brings a out-of-work FBI agent to Roswell?" Whitaker said. "Seems like the worst place to be for a recovering alien hunter."

"I might be out here hunting something else," He said slowly. I heard the rustle of clothing and footsteps. He'd moved closer to her…

"What might that be?" She asked, the edge still in her voice, but softer now.

"Nothing I could say in front of your new intern," He whispered, his voice soft. I could barely hear him now.

"Oh, she's a big girl," Whitaker shot back. "I think she can handle it. Right, Parker?

"Um, I'm just gonna go get some more folders," I said quickly, moving past them. "Excuse me."

"I needed to see you," He whispered, leaning into her.

"Well, you should have thought of that before you publicly humiliated me on TV," She said. I stared at the folder in front of me.

"Don't let politics come between us," He whispered.

"Politics is the reason you slept with me to begin with."

"Well, maybe at first," He said quietly. "But it's… more than that, now." He moved closer to her. I tried to breathe. He was so - mesmerizing, and charming… and she was falling for it.

"You showed me a side of myself that I didn't know existed," He whispered. I heard the rustle of clothing again, heard her breath catch as he leaned in to her -

{Enjoying it, Liz?}

I swallowed hard, feeling the burn rushing up my cheeks, fumbling with the folders.

"Parker, can you lock up on your way out?" Whitaker said suddenly. "I'll see you tomorrow."

"Yeah," I said, swallowing as they walked past me. "Have a good night."

Nasedo turned and looked back at me. "Oh, we will," He said, smirking at me. He shut the door behind them.

I waited for a few seconds before opening the back door. Max walked past me, moving for the file cabinets. "We gotta move fast," He said. "I don't know how long he's going to be able to keep her away…"

"I don't think they're going to be back anytime soon," I murmured, moving to help him.


"We only have a couple minutes to talk," Valenti said. I nodded, lacing my fingers together tightly.

"What's up?" I asked, looking up at him.

He sat down next to me on the lower bunk. "I just want to make sure you don't do anything," He said carefully. "Like use your powers to try to break out of here." I didn't answer, staring across the cell.

"The best thing to do right now is to sit tight," He said quietly.

I glanced over at him. "You sound like Max."

"Look," He said. "I know it's hard for you to be locked up like this -"

"It's not that bad," I interrupted. "I killed a man. Maybe this is where I should be."

He was shaking his head before I finished. "Michael… you killed the man who killed Agent Topolsky. And Agent Stevens, and who knows how many others, and he was just about to kill me."

"Yeah," I said. "I've told myself all those things. But I still killed a man."

I stared down at my hands, at the faint lines on my palm. The ones she'd washed last night.

Michael. You're scaring me. Michael...

He didn't say anything. Just looked at me quietly.

"Look, the thing that I keep thinking about is that what happened - it's just the tip of the iceberg. I've been trying to prepare myself for what's about to go down, and I have no idea what to do." I looked over at him. "I mean, I'm - I'm cracking rocks. I have no clue who, or what, we're up against. And I've been so pissed off at Max for not leading, but…"

I shook my head. "He doesn't know any more than I do. None of us do.

"We're all in the dark, waiting to be attacked, and all I can think is, what if I'm not strong enough?"


"There's nothing," I whispered. There has to be something else. Think. Come on, Liz, think -

"Damnit!" Max yelled, knocking some files over. I froze. That was the voice I remembered. From Michael's apartment -

I know all about it. I know you've been lying to me for months. That the two of you have been screwing around -

I blinked, focusing on the file in front of me. "So, I - I guess it's not all over," I whispered.

"It can be," He said, his voice tense and desperate. "These are just bones that somebody dug up...pieces of the past. If I can just fix it, it can all be over," He said, looking out the window. "Things can go back to how they were."

I bit down on my lip. "I don't think they can," I murmured. I felt his gaze flicker over to my shoulders for a moment, and then he turned back to the window. I looked down at the papers in front of me.

"So I, uhm - I never really got the whole story," I said, trying to keep my voice from trembling. "Why are we looking for these bones? What exactly is cadmium-x?"

"It's an isotope of cadmium that might have been created when Michael killed Pierce," Max said, pacing. I couldn't miss the tension in his voice. He doesn't want to talk about Michael, I thought, remembering him sitting on my bed, the night before I left -

…I don't want to discuss this with you under any circumstances. Ever. The only way I can stand to look at either of you is to pretend it never happened…

"So it's - it's like some sort of after-effect of Michael using his powers?" I asked.

"Something like that," He said, glancing over at me. I looked down.

"And if we don't get the bones before they're able to test for cadmium-x, then…" He sighed. "Then Michael is screwed. We all are."

I blinked, remembering the sites we'd found when Alex and I did the internet search. We'd looked for nuclear analysis, too.

And one of the sites was Las Cruces University.


Chapter Index

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DC Slash Harry Potter Ros. Hetero Ros. Slash Ros. Other