A/N: Hello, everyone! I know it's been awhile but I've been focusing on my Buffy fic. As for an update on the Roswell fics-Twist of Fate is on hiatus for now and so is Ghosts of yesterday. I'm almost done this one and will begin Part II: Beginning of Time soon. Please review and favorite if you can.
Chapter 41: Back To Square One
"You again," I said with irritation as I realized where I was.
"I see you have made the right decision," he said, taking in the room we were standing in. It was filled with bags and strewn clothes. "But you have only gotten halfway there."
This time, he was disguised as my father again. "I do not wish to harm you," he said, with a hitch of amusement in his voice. "I just want to show you the way."
"I want to know your real name," I blurted out, sick of his games. "I want to know what you really look like."
"I told you who I am," he replied a bit impatiently. "And what I do-my purpose. Why must you be so curious with the frivolous details?"
"Because I'm not sure if I should trust you, you work for evil too."
"I work for no one, Vessel."
I ground my teeth and clenched my fists. "Don't call me that."
He merely took me in with interest. "You wish to know my name, yet you do not wish to be called by yours."
Trust was not an issue here, not anymore. All I wanted was for him to go away. But he kept looking at me with passive eyes that seemed to be sizing me up. Now, he was taunting me.
"In fact, I'm almost like you in a way. I'm just energy that is present when a solution must be fixed," he said factually.
"No, I'm more than that," I protested, growing angry quickly.
A smirk crossed his face and he almost laughed. "You're human, right? Or at least that's what you think. All I see is a very bright light. You see, that's what I look like. You and I, we stretch into every crevice of every world. Once you reach your full power, you'll realize this. Only then, will you see me."
This words were chipping away at my heart. All he did was make me question myself more. I was a person, dammit, not a ball of energy to be used. "Have I set the balance right?" I asked, eager to get out of this dream.
"Not yet. Not until you leave."
"Well than, I've fixed the imbalance. I'm leaving tomorrow."
"It's not always that simple child. I see all and I can hear your doubts. They scream at me. Tell me, can you leave him?"
"Don't bring him into this," I growled out. "He has nothing to do with this."
"Wrong. He has everything to do with this. He is perhaps the only thing that can keep you from leaving or fulfilling your purpose. We cannot always predict love or it's ramifications."
"Michael, isn't the problem, I am."
"Is that so? You love him-that enough is a problem," he hissed. I regarded him with murderous eyes and almost reached out and chocked him.
"Is that why you want me to leave? This was never about finding myself. You just want me to leave him," Liz accused, her face flushing.
"That is not why I want you to leave, Vessel," he bit off. "Why are getting so upset with me? I merely saying what you are thinking. You wonder if you are making the right decision by staying with him because of your fate. You wonder if he can make it without you and you without him. You know you are hurting him, Liz."
"I love him," I said quietly. "As much as I'm hurting him, I can't leave him. Don't ask me to leave him because I won't do it."
"I could never ask such a thing. You wouldn't listen. The real reason why you are leaving is to make crucial decisions about this love of yours. Your sanity depends solely on that. You would have been holding all of your feelings in if it weren't to protect him."
He began to sense my thoughts and I pinned him with heavy glare. "That's not true." But by the trembling in my voice and my weak tone, it was obvious I was lying. What I fool I was. Did I honestly think that last night Michael and I had solved anything? I couldn't think about this right now. Last night, everything was perfect. Now, all these thoughts were running through my head unwarranted.
"The truth hurts, vessel," he cooed, almost in a caring voice. "This is for your own good. If you think it is hard to leave him now," he began but then paused at the dangerous gleam in my eyes. "Do you not want to talk about this?"
"What are you getting at?"
"All I'm saying is that leaving to another city is a small feat. When you transcend to a level beyond Earth and humanity to save both, will you be ready to leave him then?"
"It's not really something you can prepare for," I said. "I try not to think about it."
"You see the Council is more concerned about controlling your current fate. I, on the other hand, wish to steer you in the right direction. However, I'm less concerned about *why* you choose your fate in the end. I'm more concerned with the one reason that might keep you from making that decision. Maybe fate is predetermined and the finest of paths are usually those led with guides, but love is never foreseen. I have seen many wars and the falling of many empires, but nothing is more powerful than the love one holds in their hearts. It guides them rather than their destinies."
"I'm going to save the world," I assured him. "You have my word on that."
"I wonder how you'll feel about that later on, when you have a choice."
"What's that supposed to mean?"
He didn't react. He just looked back at me.
"Go back now, child, and fix the imbalance," he commanded. "We will speak again."
Before I could protest, the room faded.
I immediately knew where I was when I snapped to. Guilt slammed through me when I realized I was laying in Michael's arms. I forgot how nice it felt to wake up like this. He was always warm and it felt like I was safe. It felt like I was supposed to be here with him. Suddenly his whole body stiffened and I looked to him in confusion, expecting to find him still sleeping.
Instead his eyes were right on me and they were dark with unbearable pain. A light probing in my head came to my attention and I closed my eyes shut at my own stupidity. The connection was open.
"Michael," I began.
He hissed as if I was burning him and pulled away from me. His eyes were flashing brazenly at me, daring me to show something else. "I thought we were done hiding things from each other," he growled out.
I wasn't used to the full connection blaring in my head. Before I had been so overwhelmed about us reuniting that I hadn't given it much thought. But when I woke the sheer force of all her thoughts running through my head startled me. When I finally realized what she was thinking, it was like a physical blow. Brick upon brick of doubt and guilt were falling on top of me.
The realization that the person I had been waking up next to for months wasn't even sure if we should be together made me push her off of me. She had a guilty look on her face and said my name.
Go ahead, Liz, I wanted to scream. Lie to me some more.
"I thought we were done hiding things from each other," I spat out. She flinched at my harsh tones and the thoughts running through my head. "What else have you been hiding from me?"
It was like bursts of emotions were exploding in my head. I couldn't even concentrate. Then, suddenly it was gone. Liz's eyes slowly met mine. "It's complicated, Michael."
"No, it's not," I bit off. "You've been lying to me. You've been having doubts like this for a long time now. Did you never want to talk about it or did you just want to keep it to myself?"
Her face contorted with anger. "They are *my* thoughts and my business-"
"I thought that we decided you'd tell me things."
"Give me chance to explain, dammit! You only know half the story and you're jumping to conclusions!"
I sat back on the bed and gave her an imploring look. "Start from the beginning," I said tersely.
"I've never lied to you, Michael. You don't know what I've been dealing with."
"I know," I whispered, my heart breaking. God, I wish I had been there. I wish she had come to me.
She bit her lip and shook her head. "No, you don't understand."
"How come you never let me?" I asked, suddenly. "How come whenever you're hurting, you don't come to me?"
"Michael, what? That's not true," she denied.
"When you found out about the prophecy, you didn't tell me. When you found out about your father, you said you needed time alone. But that night, you went out with Tristan. Yesterday, for the funeral, pride wasn't the only thing keeping you from coming back to me, was it?"
"Michael," she began to protest. But I could see in her eyes that she was seeing what I had been seeing all along.
"Tell me *one* time you came to me."
She was silent and tears began to slip down her cheeks. Our connection didn't have to be open right now to know what I was feeling. "I love you, Michael. So much…." she began. "The thing is my dreams is right. I would neglect my destiny for you."
"So, what's your solution? Leave town so you can pull away and fall out of love with me?" I asked harshly. "Tell me what your going away is going to solve? Because you are never going to used to what you have to do and it doesn't matter where you are, you're going to wake up and feel like a timer is clicking down."
Liz was reaching out to touch me and I kept pulling away. Dammit, I loved her so much and it hurt like hell having to pull away from her like this. But it didn't change the fact that she had to understand.
"You don't have a choice here, Liz. But I do. I chose to be with you…to love you, all by myself. You cannot take that away from me. I won't let you."