Second Chances Second Chances
By Erin

Disclaimer: If I owned 'Roswell,' would I be writing fanfiction?

Dedication: This goes to... my little sister, who so lovingly let me use the computer this afternoon to write this. She didn't even complain! I love you, Leigh!

Author's Note: Okay, I'm having *major* writer's block right now. Although, I *think* that it's being cured. I'm starting to get more ideas and things to write about. I wanted to end the questions about 'Biology Projects, Fraser Woods, and Girl Fights,' so I simply wrote this. I hope you enjoy it!

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

"So, I didn't know that you and Kyle were a couple. Why didn't you tell me? Aren't best friends supposed to be clued in on these scams so that can play along?" Maria questioned Liz during their break at the Crashdown on Sunday afternoon.

"Well, did you tell me about you and Alex?" Liz paused, waiting for Maria's reluctant shake of her head. When she did, Liz continued, "I heard about the hallway incident second hand from Pam Troy, of all people. Maria, you gotta tell me these things so that I won't pass out or worse, fall to the floor in laughter when I hear about them."

"Sorry. We were just doing it to make a scene, don't worry about it. I think it's safe to say that we're over."

Liz scanned the cafe then spoke, her voice a hushed whisper. "Who would have thought that both of us would be so desperate that we would go out with someone to make another person jealous?"

"I didn't say that we made the scene for that!" Maria exclaimed, walking behind the counter and placing a glass under the soft drink machine to fill it with cherry cola.

"No, you didn't have to," Liz completed, a serious look on her face.

Maria stared at Liz, mouth hanging open.

"God, I so need to get a best friend who can't read me like you do."

"Hey, I can't help it," Liz gasped between giggles. "It comes as a part of our friendship and all the years that we've known each other."

When Liz's laughter died down, both girls looked up to see the alien trio walk into the cafe.

"I guess they didn't find Tess," Liz pointed out.

"I'll get them," Maria said, a frown spreading across her face.

"You sure?"

"I have to earn money somehow," Maria called back to Liz, beginning her walk to the aliens' booth.

"Uh, Maria?"

"I know, you don't have to tell me anything. I'm Teflon!"

"No. The cherry cola?" she spoke, pointing to the overflowing glass of soda on the drink machine.

"Damn!" Maria exclaimed as she ran back to the drink machine, picked up the cup, and began to wipe it down, along with the countertop and the floor.

* * * * *

"What is she doing?" Isabel pointed to Maria, who was rushing around behind the counter, cleaning the floor and countertop furiously.

"I guess she had an accident," Michael said dryly, clutching Isabel's hand.

"Michael..." Isabel began, but Maria, who was obviously in a hurry, cut her off.

"Welcome to the Crashdown. What can I get for you today?" Maria asked in a monotone voice, eyeing her three customers.

"I just want a Diet Coke and some fries," Isabel told her, letting go of Michael's hand.

"Get me a Sigourney Weaver and some Saturn Rings, with a Cherry Cola," Max said as he handed Maria his menu. Then, he went back to his usual staring at Liz, with her oblivious to his gaze.

"Just get me a Will Smith and an Alien Blast," Michael told her coldly, not once looking up into her emerald colored eyes.

"Is that all?" Maria asked, wanting desperately to get away from the three who made her life miserable.

"Yeah," they said in unison.

"It'll be out soon," she called to them as she walked off to give Jose their order.

* * * * *

When Maria had disappeared behind the counter, Isabel picked up where she had left off. "Michael, I don't want this..."

"What don't you want?" he asked, looking up from the table momentarily.

"Us."

Silence.

"I know that you can't look me in the eyes and tell me that you don't love Maria," Isabel told him, holding his hand for support.

"I can't hurt her," he said quietly, not looking up at Max or Isabel. "The person... thing... that I am will hurt her. I couldn't do that to her and it would kill me if anything happened to her. And this is my destiny. It's supposed to be this way."

"Michael, don't you see?" Max paused formulating what he was going to say next, "The longer you stay away from her, the more painful it is. She isn't thinking about what will happen to her if you love her. All that she's thinking about is how much it hurts to be away from you."

"Why aren't you acting on your own advice, Maxwell?" Michael spat bitterly.

Max didn't answer, obviously hurt by Michael's outburst.

"She loves you, Michael. I don't know if you can see it, but she does. She doesn't care what happens to her... as long as she's with you," Isabel told him softly, "And as for us... I know that there's someone better for me. Alex. And I know that you know that there's someone better for you. And the longer you avoid her, the harder it will to gain her trust and love again."

With that, Michael stood up silently and stormed out of the Crashdown.

* * * * *

"Do you think what we did was right?" Max asked his sister, who was in deep thought, across the table.

"I hope so."

Just then, Maria walked up to their booth, arms filled with hot plates.

"Food's up," she told them as she set their plates and drinks on the table. She paused for a second, looking at Michael's empty seat, but she set his plate down where he was sitting.

"Just pay at the desk," she told them as she turned on her heal and headed back to the kitchen.

"I'll go get him," Max said reluctantly. Somehow, he wasn't looking forward with having to deal with Michael.

"Good luck," Isabel told him as he walked out the door.

* * * * *

"All you have to do is to tell her that, Michael. You just have to tell her what you just told me and she'll see why she fell in love with you, in the first place," Max said to Michael later that night.

They had been talking for about two hours about destiny, Maria and Liz, and everything else that had happened in the past month.

Just then, Tess burst into Michael's apartment, hair frazzled and shirt torn, not to mention the bruises and scratches on her legs and arms.

"Max!" she exclaimed, as she ran to him, arms open.

"Tess," Max greeted her, rolling his eyes.

Why did she have to come back?

"Glad you're back. We were starting to get worried," Michael said, sarcasm evident in his voice.

"I didn't realize how hard it was to hitch a ride."

"You gotta learn sometime," Max told her. "Would you mind, Michael?"

"Not at all, I'll just go to the Crashdown and have something to eat and maybe I'll think about what you said. Thanks."

The door slammed shut and Tess and Max were left alone in the empty room.

"So..." Tess began, wondering what Max had to tell her.

"We can't be together, Tess. I can't be our leader if I'm with you because I can't think straight."

"But we're destined to be together!" she whined.

"No, we make our own destinies, Tess," he said coldly.

"But... but..." she stuttered, unable to comprehend what he was telling her.

Why didn't he want to be with her?

"Our 'destinies' or whatever they are were written a long time ago and they obviously didn't think about what would happen if we didn't like our destinies."

"You're saying that you don't like me?" she whispered.

"No, I'm not saying that."

"Then what are you saying?"

"We can still fulfill our destinies and be with other people. I've found my soul mate and I'm sure that one day, you'll find yours. We'll be stronger if we're a team and work together. But not a couple. Understood?"

All that Tess did was nod her head before she walked out.

* * * * *

Michael sat down at their favorite booth in the Crashdown and looked around to see if he could find Maria.

"What do you want, Michael?" Liz asked him when she reached the booth, looking up from her order pad.

"I just want a cherry cola," he told her, eyes planted on the table.

As she turned around to give the orders to the cook, he said, "Wait!"

"What is it, Michael?" Liz was obviously annoyed.

"Will you get Maria to come out here and sit with me for a few minutes. I have something that I need to tell her."

"Sure. Whatever."

"Thanks," he grinned at her as she walked back to where Maria was standing.

* * * * *

"Michael wants to talk to you," Liz told Maria when she got behind the counter.

"What?" Maria exclaimed. Michael... wanting to talk to her. Was the apocalypse coming?

"He's sitting right over there," Liz said, speaking slowly as if she was talking to a four year old.

"I know that!" Maria snapped.

"He just told me that he wanted to talk to you," she completed innocently.

"Oh, okay. But just for a few minutes."

"Maria?"

"What?"

"Good luck."

When Maria had walked off, Max walked into the restaurant. He quickly walked over to the counter where Liz was standing.

"Can I speak to you?" he said, looking around the Crashdown.

"Sure. Speak."

"I mean, in private," he whispered, motioning to the break room.

"Okay," Liz said as she grabbed Max's hand and led him into the room.

"So, what do you want?"

"Just to apologize."

"About?" Liz asked, intrigued that he was actually coming to her to grovel.

"My actions…" he paused, "with Tess."

"Mmm hmm?"

"Liz, she and I don't belong together."

"You don't?" she said, sarcasm prevailing over her usual tone.

"You and me belong together, Liz."

"I could have told you that…" she stopped to gather her thoughts, "But what about your destiny? What are you going to do? Are you just going to give it up because you think that you and me belong together? I couldn't live with myself if you gave up your destiny for me."

"No! I'm not going to give up my destiny… just the part withTess. She and I can work as a team with Isabel and Michael to save our people. We don't have to be a couple to work as a team. That's the way that I see it."

Liz nodded.

"So…" he began, unsure of what to say.

"So?"

"Do you want to go do something tonight?" he asked shyly, looking up into her brown eyes.

"What about Tess?"

"Forget about her, she's not going to bother us any more."

"I take it that you've already spoken to her."

"I think that she finally gets it."

"Well, Kyle will be happy," Liz smiled.

"What?"

* * * * *

Michael was caught off guard when Maria walked up to his booth and plopped down in the seat across from him.

"I heard that you wanted to speak to me," she said, trying to stay calm.

"Yeah, I do."

He just left it at that. They sat there for a few minutes in silence.

"What do you want, Michael?" Maria exclaimed, frustrated by his lack of words.

"I just wanted to tell you something."

"And that something is..." she motioned for him to continue.

"I just wanted to tell you that... you know, about the game we played in the woods."

"What about it?" she asked plainly, trying to mask her curiosity.

"My truth. When Kyle asked me if I had ever, uh, been in love. And how many times I had. Well, I just wanted to explain why I said I had been in love twice."

"Oh my God!" Maria exclaimed, causing all the people in the Crashdown to stare at their booth to see what the commotion was about.

"I should have known that you would come and tell me your EXCUSES! I've heard enough. Goodbye," she said as she climbed out of the booth.

She was on her way back to the break room when she felt a pair of strong arms wrap around her.

"Michael, I told you goodbye. I meant it!" she exclaimed, trying desperately to shake the strong arms that encircled her.

* * * * *

She whirled around to find Alex standing right behind her, grinning.

"Michael?" Alex asked, raising an eyebrow.

"I'm sorry, Alex. Michael was just..." she stopped to think of the right word.

"Harassing you?"

"Yeah, or something like that," Maria sighed, sitting down on the comfy couch in the break room.

Liz walked up to them just then.

"Hey, Maria... Alex. What's up?"

"Well, I got movies for movie night. Scream 3!" he exclaimed, pulling the case out of his movie store bag.

"Hated it!" Liz and Maria chimed.

"But I did manage to get a chick flick backup..." he paused, then pulled a movie out of the bag. "I thought that ya'll would like Never Been Kissed."

"Aww... that's so sweet, but I have plans for tonight," Liz said sympathetically.

"And just what might those be?" Maria asked.

"Well, Max kinda asked me if I wanted to go out tonight."

"And you?" Alex questioned Maria.

"I was gonna go home and mope around the house all night."

"Ahh... I see. Well, I might as well go return these," he stated, holding the video bag in the air.

"You might as well return what, Alex?" Isabel asked as she walked into the room.

"Whoa. I didn't know you were here!"

"Well, I came back to talk to you."

"Really?" He wasn't sure if he could believe it.

Liz and Maria giggled.

"Goodbye, Alex," they both said in unison.

Isabel laughed and waved to the girls as they walked back into the restaurant.

"I was thinking that maybe we could just hang out tonight. You know, like friends. Maybe watch a movie."

"Well, you're just in luck!" Alex changed to his TV show host voice. "Tonight, we have a selection of two wonderful movies." He holds up the bag. "In this bag, there are two movies. Scream 3 and Never Been Kissed. All that you have to do, young lady, is to pick one of the movies out of the bag."

"Thanks," she said, smiling.

Then, she stuck her hand in the bag and grabbed one of the movie boxes. She pulled it out of the bag.

"Never Been Kissed! Yes!" she exclaimed.

Alex rolled his eyes. Would he ever understand the connection between women and sappy love stories?

* * * * *

The walk home was long and tiring for Maria, who had worked for five hours that day. Her feet were killing her and since her mom had the Jetta at a convention, Maria was forced to walk the two miles to her house. And to make things worse, it had started raining, so when Maria got inside her house, she was soaked.

"I hate the rain," she spoke to no one in particular. Hell, no one was there to listen to her.

She walked into her bedroom and changed clothes. Then, she fell back onto her bed and closed her eyed, falling asleep instantly.

A few hours later, she a knock woke her up from her restless sleep.

'Who would come to my house at...' she groaned, rolled over, and read the bedside clock, '2 am?'

She went to the front door. No one was there.

She went to the back door. Again, no one was there.

Exhausted and frustrated, Maria walked slowly back to her bedroom and once again fell back onto her bed, almost overtaken by sleep immediately.

There was another knock.

"Whoever this is, I'm going to kick their ass when I'm awake," she mumbled, about to stumble down the hallway, again, to find out who was at the door.

Then, something caught her eye outside of her window.

Did she just see a head of spiky hair?

She retreated back into her bedroom and immediately went to the window.

It was him.

"What the hell are you doing here?"

"I came to tell you why I said twice."

Maria rolled her eyes and sighed.

"You have five minutes," she finally said, looking at her bedside clock.

"Can I?" Michael motioned to her room.

"Sure, why not? It's not like you're going to stay long."

When Michael had climbed into her room, he sat down on the floor by her bed and took off his jacket, that was soaked. She sat down next to him on her bed.

"You have four minutes," she updated him.

"Okay... um, you know that Kyle asked me if I'd been in love and how many times. I said twice."

"Yes, I know that," Maria said matter-of-factly.

"You're wondering why I said twice, right?" Michael asked, looking up into her eyes that were shining with unshed tears.

Maria only nodded.

"I said twice because... God, this is so hard."

"Just say it. I know what you're going to say," Maria whispered, not daring to look at him.

"What do you think I'm going to say?" Michael raised an eyebrow.

"That... that... that you were in love with me, but since you found out your destiny, you like, have to be in love with Isabel," Maria managed to stutter, tears starting to fall from her green eyes.

"You know what?"

"What?" she asked, annoyed at his stalling tactics.

"I was going to say that, uh, I fell in love with you... twice."

"How is that possible? It's not, Michael. Good try, but no cigar," Maria's voice cracked, the bitter truth setting in. "Just go and leave. Go be with Isabel. You're *destined* to be with her." She waved to the window.

Michael didn't move.

"But it is possible, Maria."

"No, it's not, Michael," she argued.

"Yes it is. I fell in love with you when I first met you, when I first saw you. I loved the way that you acted and your personality. I just didn't want to admit it, not even to myself. I mean, I had a mission to find out where I came from. I just couldn't fall in love with some earth girl and expect to carry it out. But then, I fell in love with you all over again when you let me come here that one night. That's when I actually admitted to myself that I loved you. But when I told you that I loved you, it was too late. And now, as I watch you and want you from afar, I know that my worst fear is happening... that I'm hurting you because I push you away. I can only love Isabel as a sister. She feels the same way about me. We're giving up on our 'destiny' together. You're my destiny, Maria."

Tears fell like rain down Maria's cheeks.

"Really?" she asked hopefully.

"Yes," he said, wrapping his arms around Maria's waist and pulling her in for a hug. He kissed her forehead.

"Thanks."

"For what?" she asked, confused.

Since when had Michael been this direct?

When did he start thanking people?

'Oh well. It's a good start,' she thought, grinning.

"For loving me for who I am."

And she smiled at him. He even smiled. They stayed that way for a few minutes, just staring in awe.

For Maria, she'd just been handed back her life and all the love that she had ever experienced. He loved her! Michael loved her and actually admitted, to himself and to her, that she was his destiny. Life couldn't get any better.

For Michael, he'd been given a second chance at his destiny by an angel... his angel, who loved him for who he was. And he wasn't going to let this one slip through his hands.


The End