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Always Will Be - Chapter 8



Title: Always Will Be
Fandom: Roswell
Pairing: Michael/Maria
Rating: Adult
Summary: Maria returns to Roswell on her national tour, but will she have a reason to stay?
Disclaimer: They're not mine.

Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three
Chapter Four
Chapter Five
Chapter Six
Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight - I Know

Maria tapped her foot as she sat in a booth at the Crashdown. Glancing surreptitiously at her watch she noted that there were still a few minutes before she was due to meet Liz. She’d been too hyperactive to sit alone in her rented apartment that morning so here she was, waiting impatiently in the café where she had spent many long hours as a teenager waiting on the hotchpotch of locals and alien-obsessed tourists. Several long minutes later, the door opened and her long-time best friend and fellow former alien-themed waitress walked in. She stood to hug Liz warmly as she came over to join Maria at the table.

“Hey you.”

“Right back atcha sweetie.”

Settling back into their booth, they both looked up as a waitress approached them, wearing something only minimally less cheesy than the outfit they had worn in that position. Liz looked over at Maria.

“Want your usual?”

“What else?” Maria laughed in return.

Liz turned to the girl who waited patiently beside the table, notebook in hand.

“We’ll have a Will Smith, a Sigourney Weaver and a portion of Saturn Rings.”

“And don’t forget the Alien Blast” Maria interjected.

“Never!” Liz responded, a suitably horrified look on her face, only belied by the mischievous twinkle in her eyes.

As the waitress noted down their order and went to put it in, Maria and Liz grinned at each other. Despite being five years older, and not seeing each other for those five years, it was almost like they were back in high school again. Especially when the next thing Liz said was,

“So…how did your date with Michael go night before last?”

Maria looked thoughtful for a second before answering. “Actually, I think, as a proper date, it went better than any date I’ve ever been on before… and much better than most of the dates I’ve been on with Michael before.”

“Sounds promising.” Liz smiled.

“It was weird. In some ways we’re the same as we were five years ago, but in others we’ve both grown up so much. I mean, five years ago Michael had trouble committing to any kind of responsibility at work, why else was he always struggling to pay his bills? And now, he’s the head of a whole team. He’s the boss.”

“I remember. But you’re right, we’ve seen Michael grow up a lot over those years. He’s still stony and moody, and he tries to shut us out more often than not, but he’s not as overtly anti-social as he used to be.”

“We’re both a lot more emotionally mature now. Back then I don’t think we were really adult enough to handle what was between us. Maybe that’s why we fought a lot. We just couldn’t handle the intensity. Now…well, I don’t know yet if we’re destined to be together, but I think if we are, I believe we’d be mature enough not to wreck it the same way we did before.”

“So you had a good time with him then?” Liz asked as their food was brought over to them.

“Yeah. We had a lovely dinner. He even remembered my favourites. And he took me back to the apartment and walked me to my door. I don’t think he ever did that before.” Maria ducked her head and pretended to concentrate on her food, slightly abashed about what had happened next. She took a bite and swallowed before continuing. “And he wouldn’t kiss me at the door.”

“Is that a good thing?” Liz inquired, confused by Maria’s tone on her last comment.

“I know it doesn’t sound like it would be, but it is. You remember how we were before, we jumped into the physical side of our relationship before we even really knew each other. We decided we didn’t want to do it that way this time around. Michael must have realised, like me, that there are still a lot of sparks between us. He recognised that if we kissed, it would be unlikely we’d stop there.” Maria grabbed a few Saturn Rings and stuffed them into her mouth between sentences. “Which was more than I did right at that moment. Thank God Michael was there to be a voice of reason.”

Liz giggled at that. Michael being the reasonable one in any relationship was too odd a concept to even think about. Maria looked at her and chuckled as well.

“Yeah, I know it sounds deranged, but it’s true. Guess it only goes to show how much someone can change in just a few years.”

“But you think the change in Michael is for the better?” Liz asked slyly, her ‘hopeless romantic’ hat on. Maria caught what Liz was really asking, and could only answer as honestly as she could.

“Honestly, at the moment, I can’t say for sure.” She grinned. “But I sure hope it is!”

They ate in silence for a few minutes before Maria broached the topic of Max and Liz’s decision to find out if it would be possible for them to conceive a child.

“Well, we decided to go with a two-pronged approach.” Liz told Maria solemnly.

“Two-pronged? Wow, that must hurt!” Maria joked. Liz shot her a good-humoured glance.

“First part is umm…experimental.” Liz said, with a slightly dreamy smile on her face that told Maria exactly what kinds of ‘experiments’ were going on. Maria returned a knowing smile.

“And the other ‘prong’?”

“Research.” Maria nodded…Liz was a forensic analyst, this sort of thing was right up her alley. “So far the signs are good. I’ve done a few tests with our blood, but it’s slow going, since I don’t have a lot of equipment at home, so I have to use the stuff at work. And this kind of this isn’t something I can do with other people around, so I’ve been spending a lot of time there after everyone goes home in the evening, and occasionally before they get there in the morning.”

“Cutting down on your ‘experimenting’ time.” Maria broke in with a cheeky laugh. “But seriously, things are hopeful?”

“Yeah, hopeful. So far I haven’t found anything to say it definitely *won’t* work, which I’m optimistic about.”

“It’ll work out Liz, it has to. You and Max had so many problems and you overcame them all to be together. This will be the same, I’m sure of it.” Liz smiled at Maria’s confidence. Somehow, when Maria was sure of something, everyone around her felt more positive as well.

“So, Michael mentioned that you and Max were planning some group activity or something?” Maria said, digging into her meal again.

“Yeah, we were thinking…”

* * * * *

Maria and Liz lay on the floor in little Julie’s room, playing with the tot. When they had finally finished their lunch, including sinful chocolate desserts, Maria had mentioned she was planning a trip over to her mom’s. Liz insisted on accompanying her, on the pretext that she wanted to catch up with Jim and Amy, but, like Maria, had spent most of her time at floor level playing with Julie. Maria realised the significance of Max and Liz’s plans. If all went well, there would soon be another baby for Liz to spend time with…her own. And there was a place in Maria’s heart that hoped, if she and Michael *did* work out, and it was possible, maybe someday she would have her own little piece of her and Michael to love.

Chapter Nine

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