Title: Snowed In
Disclaimer: The characters of "Roswell" belong to Jason Katims, Melinda Metz, WB, and UPN. They are not mine and no infringement is intended.
Summary: Christmas fic, based on a challenge by elodie. Liz is a shy, innocent librarian and Max is the mysterious, handsome man who always comes in to read the newspapers. What happens when a freak snowstorm causes the two of them to be stuck in the library alone for one night just before Christmas?
For the third time in the last five minutes, Liz Parker turned her wrist to glance at her watch. Seven-thirty pm. She sighed tiredly, she hated the late shift. I mean, who visited the library at this time on Thursday night, and right before Christmas no less? No one, that's who. Not a single patron had visited the small library in the last hour and a half, so what was the point of staying open until eight pm?
Normally she wouldn't mind working late on a Thursday. After all, it was the only night in the week that they opened past 6pm, so she couldn't really complain, but tonight was different. For one, it was only a couple of days until Christmas and there were several other places she'd much rather be right now; secondly, it was freezing cold outside and the heating system had kindly decided to break down three hours ago, leaving Liz cold as well as alone; but the worst thing of all was that so far tonight there had been no sign of Mr. Mysterious and she found herself completely disappointed that he had not shown up.
'Mr. Mysterious', as Liz had secretly nicknamed him was, in her opinion, absolutely the most gorgeous man she had ever laid eyes on. She had no idea who he was, or even what his name was – she had never spoken to him – but there was just something about his dark good looks and soulful eyes that made her feel weak at the knees. To say that she had been surprised when out of the blue, this enigma of a man had appeared in the doorway of her somewhat out-of-the-way library two months ago and had then spent the next ninety minutes doing nothing but sitting in the corner and reading the newspapers, was an understatement.
Usually the only patrons she saw were residents of the old people's home next door, coming over to renew the same books they'd been reading all year; young mothers looking for new picture book to read to their children; and the occasional high school kid in need of textbooks for their homework. So when, on that rainy November evening just two months ago, the bell above the door rang out unceremoniously and in stepped Mr. Mysterious, clothed in an expensive-looking grey-suit-and-tie ensemble, Liz knew that her life was about to change. Okay, so it wasn't like he literally ran in and swept her off her feet or anything. No, he had simply sent a brief glance towards her startled face, before his eyes scanned the room for the newspapers and he sat down to read them with not even a word to her.
In fact, that was how it had been ever since. He would come in two or three evenings a week to read the papers, which was usually only for a brief few minutes before closing since he obviously came in after work. But he was always here on Thursdays and he always stayed right until closing, something Liz was secretly glad about, since she felt she could literally sit and stare at his strong jaw line and flawless features for hours.
However, one thing did bother her about his newspaper-reading habit: he obviously had a good job and was well off enough to buy designer suits, so why didn't he just buy the papers himself? Why did he need to come all the way out here, to her humble little library to read them? To be honest, she had no idea, but she had to admit that spending the evening alone and freezing her ass off was not her idea of a good time and it was then that she realised exactly how much she enjoyed having him around on a Thursday night, even though they had never even spoken a word to one another.
With a sigh, Liz pushed her dark-rimmed glasses up her nose and briefly glanced at the clock on the wall, before picking up the pile of books next to her on the counter. Only another twenty-eight minutes go get through until she could go home, take a nice hot bath and curl up with her favourite book. However, she was startled out of her fantasies of relaxation by the sudden shrill sound of the bell above the library door. Liz's heart leapt in sudden anticipation, yet she continued to sort the books in her hands. Could this be Mr. Mysterious? Had he decided to show up at the last moment? She was almost afraid to turn and find out.
Max Evans breathed a sigh of relief as he entered the small library and his eyes caught on the petite brunette sorting books in the corner. She was here...and by the looks of things, she was alone. His lips automatically curled up in a smile and his breath caught in his throat as he watched her for a moment. She was standing at the counter, her back to him, as she organised the returned books. He couldn't help but notice how shiny and smooth her long, dark hair looked as it flowed over her shoulders, and he had the sudden urge to run his fingers through it. It was a good thing she was turned away from him, however, because one glance at those beautiful deep brown eyes, framed by stylish black-rimmed glasses, and he would have been a goner.
With once last glance in her direction, he made his way towards the small alcove where the newspapers were on display. As he sank into one of the three comfortable armchairs in the corner, he pulled off his gloves and shook his head, brushing the snowflakes from his hair. It was extremely cold out tonight, and the forecast was predicting even colder temperatures to come. Pleased to be free of the biting wind outside, Max let out a contented sigh and reached for the morning edition of the New York Times. He pulled it open, with the intention of catching up with the day's news, but instead found himself discretely peeking over the top of the paper, his gaze directed towards the gorgeous woman on the other side of the room.
As he watched her, careful not to catch her attention, he thought back to the first time he'd laid eyes on her, about two months ago. He had been having an awful day; first, he'd lost a business deal that morning; then his sister Isabel had called him during his lunch hour to complain about the cold weather in Boston (even though it was only September) and then proceeded to chew him out about pretty much his entire solitary existence. By five o'clock, he'd been completely fed up and instead of buying his usual coffee and newspaper from the stand outside his office and taking the subway, he chose to simply walk aimlessly through the streets of Boston, his hands in his pockets.
As he'd walked, he'd used the time to get lost in his thoughts, to forget about the pressures and stresses of his job. In fact, he'd become so absorbed in thinking that he hadn't realised how far into the suburbs he had walked, nor had he noticed that the weather had turned and the rain was steadily soaking through his suit jacket.
Therefore it was a surprise when he found himself standing outside a small, cosy-looking library housed in an old stone building. To this day, he still wasn't sure what had made him push open the door and step inside, but the moment he laid eyes on the gorgeous creature inside, he knew it must have been the work of a higher power. He was almost embarrassed to admit it, but the sheer sight of her had been enough to stop him in his tracks, causing him to bump into a revolving display just next to the doorway. He remembered clearly how his face had grown hot when she'd turned her attention from whatever she'd been reading at the counter and her eyes locked briefly with his. For lack of anything else to do, he'd quickly averted his eyes and, spotting the journals and newspapers in a corner alcove, strode over to a comfortable chair and turned his attention the New York Times.
For the next thirty minutes, he'd pretended to be absorbed in the paper, yet all the while sneaking glances at the beautiful girl across the room. He'd found himself taken in by her almost contradicting appearance. On the one hand, she'd appeared every bit the studious, innocent librarian; she was dressed in a simple pale blue blouse and no nonsense knee-length skirt, her long, chestnut hair was pulled back in a neat ponytail at the nape of her neck and her make-up free face was slightly obscured by the rectangular, dark-rimmed glasses perched on her nose; but on the other hand, there had been something about her that made his heart beat that much faster and caused butterflies to flutter madly in his stomach. After several minutes of discretely watching her as she went about her business, he'd come to the conclusion that what was drawing him to her was not only those cute, almost trendy glasses (which he was fast becoming attached to), but the breath-taking, expressive, deep chocolate eyes hidden behind them.
After that night, he'd been hooked; he couldn't get her out of his mind. He knew he probably shouldn't be pining after her and he knew better than anyone how impossible it was to even consider pursuing her; yet still he found himself back at this very library week after week. It was stupid, he knew; God, he hadn't even had the courage to ask her name – he'd only found out when a regular borrower had arrived one evening and started up a conversation with her (oh, and her voice – it was heavenly); but he couldn't help it.
Eventually, after almost six weeks of simply sitting in the alcove, reading newspapers and watching her from afar, Max realised that he couldn't take it much longer; he had to do something about this infatuation he had with her. With Elizabeth Parker. So, with the help of Michael, his closest friend and full on 'get Max laid' supporter, he'd come up with a plan that would surely give him the courage to approach her once and for all.
After weeks of planning and waiting for the right moment, the time was finally here. Tonight, Max would finally push all his fears and misgivings aside and go after the girl.
Behind the counter along the far wall of the library, Liz sucked in a deep breath as she slowly turned around to greet the new customer, all the while hoping and praying it was her Mr. Mysterious. Her eyes widened as her gaze landed on the handsome, yet somewhat snow-covered man, currently with his nose buried in the New York Times. It was him! A delighted smile lit up her face as she took in his strong features; her heart fluttered as she watched the muscles in his upper arms flex beneath his shirt as he turned the pages.
For some reason, she just couldn't take her eyes off him. She drank in his features as if he was her lifeline. Liz was so caught up in her staring that she failed to deliberately avert her eyes when, without warning, he looked over at her. As their eyes met, she could feel her cheeks heating up with her embarrassment, yet she still couldn't bring herself to look away. He smiled a brief, but warm, half-smile in her direction before turning his gaze back to the paper, causing Liz's heart to thump rapidly in her chest. Her attention was only diverted when, out of the corner of her eye, she noticed movement from outside the window.
It had started to snow. Heavily. Well, that was just perfect.
She sighed, taking a glance at the clock. The library was due to close in twenty-five minutes and if the snow continued to fall like this, there was little chance she'd be able to drive home. In her mind, she began going over the possibilities of how she could get home instead. Maria, her best friend and roommate, was out of town visiting her parents for the holidays, so she couldn't call her for help. God, what if she couldn't get home at all? She'd be stuck in the library, with no heat and only a small office chair to sleep in.
As the minutes passed and the snow began piling up outside, she became more and more worried that she would be stuck there in the library overnight with a complete stranger; albeit, an incredibly handsome stranger, but a stranger nonetheless. In fact, Liz was so busy fretting that she didn't notice Max watching her from his corner; nor did she see him put down the newspaper, stand up and head towards the counter. Her back turned to him, she was completely unaware of the way his eyes raked over the back of her head as he leaned against the counter and how he sucked in a nervous breath before opening his mouth to speak.
The sudden, unexpected timbre of a male voice echoed round the silent library, causing Liz to jump in fright and drop the book she was holding. Her hand flying to her chest, she spun round to find Mr. Mysterious standing right in front of her, leaning against the counter with a small smile that only accentuated his handsome good looks.
"Um…hi," she squeaked in surprise.
His close proximity was unnerving and she felt her cheeks heating up under his intense gaze. She grimaced internally, cursing her inability to cover her feelings. The colour of her cheeks always gave her away whenever she felt embarrassed or out of her depth.
"I'm Max," he murmured with a smile, holding out his hand in greeting.
"Liz," she returned softly, a shy smile gracing her lips as she glanced down at his outstretched palm for a second before reaching out and slipping her hand in his.
As her skin touched his, she felt an unfamiliar jolt run all the way up her arm and through her body. Liz sucked in a sharp breath when his fingers closed around hers and bit back a sigh at the feel of the warm, smooth, yet very masculine skin of his palm. The simple gesture caused her breathing to quicken and her heart to beat faster.
"So, um…" he began in a throaty, yet very sexy tone. "… I like your glasses."
Liz was taken aback. He liked her glasses?
I like your glasses?
That was all he could say? Max mentally berated himself for sounding like such an idiot.
"Um, thanks…I guess," replied Liz, a little hesitantly and this time he mentally slapped himself.
Okay, so maybe he did have a teeny tiny obsession with those cute dark-rimmed glasses – they made her look so hot he just wanted to grab her and have his wicked way with her every time he so much as glanced in her direction – but that was no reason to bring them up in conversation!
"So, um…" Max stalled briefly as he tried to think of something more intelligent to say to this shy goddess in front of him. "It's snowing pretty hard out there now. I hate to say it but it looks like we might be stuck here for a while."
"Yeah," murmured Liz, her voice a little apprehensive as she glanced towards the door. The snow was really piling up now; it was already several inches deep and it appeared to be falling harder and faster with every passing minute.
"Maybe we could wait it out together?" he asked then, giving her a small, friendly smile in an attempt to ease her concern.
"Okay, I-I'd like that," she replied softly, a tentative smile gracing her features. Max gave an inward sigh of relief at her words. Maybe Michael's plan really would have some merit.
"Great," he smiled.
"Let me just finish moving these books and then I'm all yours," added Liz, turning back around.
Max's eyes involuntarily darkened at her last words and before he knew it, he'd walked around the counter and come to a stop next to her.
"Hey, why don't you let me help you with those?" he murmured, reaching out to pick up a pile of the books and place them on one of the shelves beside him.
"Oh, um, thank you," said Liz softly, as she too reached for a handful of books.
They worked in silence and were finished within a couple of minutes, at which point they both turned to face each other at the same moment. Max's breath caught in his throat as his eyes locked with hers beneath her cute glasses.
Time seemed to stand still for him as he stared down into her soft gaze. As if of its own accord, his hand drifted up to cover hers, which was resting on the countertop. He watched as her eyes lowered to their hands for a moment, before locking with his once more and it was then that he decided to throw caution to the wind.
His free hand slid around her tiny waist, pulling her close, as he lowered his lips to hers. He couldn't stop the small smile from gracing his lips as he felt Liz sigh into his mouth at the contact.
Liz's head was spinning. Not only had Mr. Mysterious…sorry, Max, after all she knew his name now… actually approached her and spoken to her, but now he was kissing her.
And what a kiss it was!
It was like everything else had faded into the background and all she was aware of was the feel of his warm, soft lips caressing hers and his strong arm around her waist, holding her to him. She'd been dreaming about and imagining this moment for so long, that she almost couldn't believe it was actually happening.
She was so caught up in the emotions coursing through her body that, as Max removed his hand from hers and brought it up to join his other hand, pulling her flush against him, she didn't even think to protest. Instead, she moaned into his mouth and eagerly jumped up when his hands moved to her butt and lifted her onto the counter.
She clung to him willingly, her arms twisted around his neck, as he stepped between her legs, his hands still cupping her butt, holding her tightly to him. Liz gasped and her cheeks flamed as her lower body came into contact with his obvious arousal. She wasn't used to being so forward with men; in fact, she wasn't used to being with men, period.
However, as shy and self-conscious as she usually was around the opposite sex, there was something about Max that made her feel safe. She didn't feel awkward or out of her depth as his lips caressed her skin, peppering kisses down her jaw line and then gently nuzzling her neck. No, instead, it was turning her on and she could feel a certain warmth begin in her belly, quickly flowing downwards, which only served to fuel her arousal.
As Max's lips moved lower, exploring more and more of her skin, Liz took the opportunity to slip the dark suit jacket from his shoulders. He momentarily removed his hands from her backside so she could slide the material down his arms and dispose of the article in the floor. However, he did not return to his previous position, but instead, his fingers began to unbutton her plain, white cardigan, gently sliding it over her shoulders, mimicking her actions from just a moment ago.
Liz watched Max's eyes darken as his gaze lowered to the thin tank top she was wearing beneath the cardigan and she felt her nipples harden under the intense scrutiny. She felt so turned on that she didn't spend even one second considering the complete craziness of what she was about to do with his man. Instead, her hands drifted to his tie, loosening and pulling it over his head in one quick movement, before she turned her attention to the top button of his white shirt.
One by one, she slid the buttons through the holes of his shirt, slowly revealing the smooth, tanned skin of his chest to her gaze. Max's hands ceased all movement on her body as his eyes followed her every move intently. When the shirt was completely unbuttoned, Liz boldly slid her hands beneath the material, letting her fingers trail down over his chest to the hard ridges of his stomach. She couldn't prevent the small gasp, which escaped from her lips as she took in the sight of him. He had, by far, the most gorgeous body she had ever seen on a man; not that she'd seen many in the flesh, but he definitely outranked anything she'd seen on TV or in magazines.
Slowly, Liz raised her eyes to his and their heated gazes locked. A moment passed, then another, but suddenly that was all either of them could take. As if a switch had suddenly been flipped on inside them, they began kissing frantically, unable to get enough of each other. Max's hands went to Liz's lower back, as hers gripped his upper arms. He slipped his hands beneath the soft material of her top and then, without warning, pulled it over her head. Not wasting any more time, he then reached behind her and deftly unclasped her bra, leaving her naked from the waist up. Liz was surprised by the speed and ease of his actions, having barely felt a thing as he divested her of her clothes; however, she found that she couldn't feel self-conscious about being so exposed in front of a man she'd only ever spoken a few words to, as the appreciation and wonder in his eyes was enough to calm her nerves.
Before she had time to think, Max had taken one of her nipples into his mouth and was laving it gently as his hands slipped beneath her knee-length skirt, easing it upwards as he went. All she could do was wrap her arms around his neck and cling to him for dear life as her body reacted to his ministrations. Her whole body jerked involuntarily as his fingers brushed against her wet panties at the same time as his mouth moved to her other breast. Her breaths came in short pants and her head fell back in pleasure when his fingers dipped inside the damp material and began to stroke her clit.
"Oh, God… yes," she muttered, almost incoherently, as Max brought her closer and closer to her peak.
Unable to take his teasing any longer, she let go of his neck and brought her hands down to his suit pants. Her fingers struggled with the buckle of his leather belt for a few moments, before finally she got it. With shaking hands, she fumbled with the button at the top and although it was becoming increasingly difficult to concentrate whilst Max was stroking her intimately, eventually she managed to tug down the zipper.
Max raised his head from her breasts and kissed her thoroughly, slipping his tongue into her waiting mouth as he hooked his fingers into the waistband of her panties and pulled them down her legs. Liz shivered as the cool air from the library hit her heated skin, but Max was quick to free himself from the confines of his boxers, pull a condom from his back pocket and slip it on, and then urge Liz's legs around his waist.
After a couple of awkward, fumbling starts, Max finally entered her. As if he sensed that she was incredibly inexperienced, he went slowly, something that Liz appreciated very much. Although she had to admit that it didn't hurt as much as she'd expected it to, it was quite uncomfortable at first; however, after only a few seconds, the ache began to subside and was instead replaced by a pleasurable, warming sensation. The pleasure began building inside of her and Liz found herself moving with Max's strokes, urging him on.
Eventually, just as the sensations became almost too much and Liz felt as though she was about to explode, Max reached down between their bodies and let his fingers dance over her clit. That was all it took to send her over the edge and she came with a sharp cry of pleasure. As she rode it out, her inner muscles pulsating around Max, his thrusts became more forceful and within a few seconds, he followed her in climax.
They came down from their high, Max's hands gently moving up and down Liz's back, making her shiver at the contact. She slid her arms around his waist, letting her hands rest on the warm, slightly sweaty skin of his lower back, as she rested her forehead on his chest. She had never felt anything like that before and if she was honest, she'd never thought she would be able to experience anything so wonderful and perfect with anyone, let alone with a man she barely knew.
As she struggled to catch her breath, Max lifted one hand to her chin, lifting it upwards so she could look into his eyes. He placed a soft, sweet kiss to her lips before gently whispering,
"You're perfect, Liz; and I've wanted to do that for so long."
As he'd held Liz's body close after their spontaneous love-making, Max worried for a second that he'd come on too strong and taken things too far. He hadn't planned on seducing her tonight; he'd hoped for a little conversation, maybe a realisation or two that perhaps they might be good together, but he definitely hadn't consciously decided to have sex with her on the checking-out counter of the library.
However, the second their eyes met as he helped her with the books she was sorting, his instincts took over and the next think he knew, they were engaging in a heavy make-out session. When he had lifted her chin to look at him just a few moments ago, he'd had every intention of apologising for his unorthodox behaviour. But, as soon as he saw her elated expression, he couldn't resist kissing her softly and telling her how he'd wanted to kiss and make love to her for so long.
Now, though, he was curled up with Liz in the same large, comfy armchair he'd been occupying earlier, their clothes pulled haphazardly around their shoulders, with an old blanket found in the children's story corner wrapped around them as they watched the snow pile up outside the window. It was now nine pm and the snow was showing no signs of letting up any time soon. It was high as the window now – at least two or three feet – and was steadily increasing in height.
"So, you're one of those high-flying Boston businessmen, huh?" the sound of Liz's sweet voice broke him out of his thoughts.
"Yeah, I guess," he murmured with a smile, as he gently stroked her hair. "Although it's really not all that interesting… or high-flying, for that matter."
"Really?" she questioned, lifting her head slightly. "It sounds a lot more interesting and worthwhile than being a librarian."
"Oh, I don't know," he replied thoughtfully. "You librarians have the pleasure of peace and quiet all day, every day. Sometimes, I'd give anything for that. You know, if it's not work, then it's my sister breathing down my neck about my apparent lack of social skills, or my parents wanting to know if I've managed to settle down yet. I feel like I can never get a moment's peace."
"Is that why you come here so often?" asked Liz. "To get away from it all?"
"Partly," he replied with an indulgent smile, which Liz had apparently noticed and was watching him curiously. "Although there is one other reason… I come here to see you."
"Me?" Liz questioned incredulously, her wide-eyed expression causing Max to give a small chuckle.
"Yes, you," he confirmed with a nod. "Ever since I first laid eyes on you, I haven't been able to get you out of my mind."
"But, why me? I'm nothing special," she denied with a shake of her head.
"Nothing special?" he questioned in surprise. "Liz, you're the most beautiful woman I have ever laid eyes on. Your eyes… your hair…" he ran his fingers through the soft strands, "God, everything about you is special."
Max watched with a smile as her cheeks turned pink with embarrassment and she buried her head in his chest. He leaned down so that his mouth was level with her ear.
"In fact," he whispered, "I think I might just be falling in love with you, Liz Parker."
"Oh my God," came her embarrassed reply, muffled by his chest. Max grinned.
"Don't worry, you don't have to say it back," he assured her gently. "I was just hoping you liked me enough to give us a chance... and maybe go out for dinner with me sometime?"
At that, Liz lifted her head to gaze into his eyes.
"Wow," she murmured. "I never thought… yes, I'll go to dinner with you, Max."
"Great. Wonderful," he grinned happily. Wow, who'd have thought that Michael's big plan would actually work? "So, it looks like we have the whole night ahead of us… what will we do to pass the time?"
This time, it was Liz who made the first move. She lifted her lips to his, kissing him thoroughly, as they undressed each other beneath the blanket. This time, everything was discarded, including shoes and socks, until the only things left to be removed were Liz's dark-rimmed glasses. However, as she reached up to pull them off, Max stopped her with one hand.
"No, don't," he said softly.
"Why not?" she asked. "Surely they have the potential to kill the mood."
"No," Max said, with a shake of his head. "Taking them off would ruin the mood."
"Okay," said Liz uncertainly, as she lowered her hand.
"I have a confession to make," murmured Max, as he leaned in to press his lips to hers, his hands lifting her hips so he could slide into her. "Your glasses turn me on so much, I can barely control myself right now."
Liz's eyes widened in surprise, but as Max rocked his hips against her, a smile formed on her face.
"Well, if that's the case, then I'll never take them off again."
This time their lovemaking was slow and deliberate and Max took his time getting to know her body fully, leaving both of them fully sated. Afterwards, as Liz drifted off to sleep in his arms, he looked down at her flushed face, now peaceful and calm.
"Merry Christmas, Liz," he murmured, pressing his lips to the top of her head.
Once he was sure she was sleeping, he glanced out of the window before giving a small wave of his hand. Immediately, the snow ceased and the clouds dispersed, leaving a clear sky that twinkled with stars. For the first time in his life, Max was grateful for one of Michael's crazy ideas.
Who knew being a human-alien hybrid could be so beneficial to your love life?