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Strange Occurrence: Caution

Reply to Mel M/Misty

Added to the Roswell Slash Archive October 28, 2003

Title: Strange Occurrence
Author : Mel M/Misty
Email: SSailorUranuss@aol.com



      Max picked his lifeless friend up, noticing for the first time that he was completely drained of blood. He dismissed the endless possibilities and dragged him to the gaping hole in the ground he had spent all morning digging. He placed him in the ground and heavyheartedly covered him with dirt. The others would be there soon. It was afternoon so everyone was there. He plunged the decorated cross into the ground as a headstone and sighed tiredly.

      The others walked out and the funeral began.

      "Today we say goodbye to a good friend and wish him. . ."

      Max was cut off by music. He looked at the house confused.

      "Goodbye my friend. I know you're gone, you said you're gone but I can still feel you here. It's not the end. You gotta keep it strong before the pain turns into fear," it blared. Then the music stopped.

      They all looked around in bewilderment.

      "Guys."

      Everyone turned in the direction of the voice and the air became still.

      "Michael?" Maria whispered.

      "They let us come back to help you until fate takes it's natural course or something."

      They all looked behind Michael to find Alex standing there with a smile. "We can only stay until our work is done which means we're here until all of you are out of danger," he explained.

      Max rushed toward Michael and gave him a hug. It was amazing. Not only were they sent back but they had actually materialized.

      They all hugged and thanked the powers that be for what time they had been given.

      "Hey Michael," Nicole called. All were silent. What did she have to say this time?

      "Yeah?"

      Nicole couldn't help but be nice. After all, he was dead. "Welcome back."

      "Thanks," he replied with a smile. "Let's go inside and have something to eat, I'm starving."

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      Liz touched Max's shoulder gently.

      "Don't touch me," he growled, pushing her hand off of his shoulder.

      Liz glared at him the turned and made her way up the stairs. As soon as she was up the stairs she smirked and her footsteps became silent and predatory. She slipped into the room Brooke was in. It was dark.

      Brooke unknowingly closed the door and began to undress.

      Liz grabbed her and pressed her neck to the wall with her forearm. She let out a primal growl as her face scrunched awkwardly, her teeth became fangs and her eyes became golden.

      Brooke squirmed, trying to get away from her. She knew who it was and this explained a lot but right now she was more focused on staying human and alive. As she felt the other girls forearm press harder she gasped, "Please don't hurt me."

      "You know, that's exactly what Alex said before he died."

      Brooke was scared nearly to death. She tried to scream but failed. She squirmed as yet another attempt to break out of the vampire's grip but failed again.

      "Squirm and scream all you like, it'll make you more of a victory and it'll make you taste so much better."

      Liz was about to bite the fidgeting blonde when the door flew open.

      "Leave her alone," Nicole screamed, lunging at the unwanted guest.

      They rolled around on the floor for a little while, punching, kicking and scratching until Liz leapt out the window, into the dark night.

      Nicole stood breathlessly and leaned on the wall. "Brookie, you ok?"

      Brooke nodded. "A little shaken but I'm fine." She saw a string of glistening liquid drizzle down her lovers neck and gasped, "Nic, you're bleeding." She grabbed her hand and dragged her to the bathroom.

      Ten minutes later. . .

      "Are you sure it was Liz?"

      "Look Mr. Dark and Moody, I don't have a clue but Brookie over there saw her face to face. That bitch was strong but I guess it's the whole vamp thing," Nicole growled, pressing the damp washcloth to the gash on her neck while holding Brooke close with her free arm. That had been way too close for comfort and Nic knew that statement was ever so true. She had to protect Brooke and her friends at any cost and oddly that included Isabel, Max and Maria. For some reason she'd gotten close to both Maria and Isabel and as for Max, well, he was a great guy and a fast thinker, not to mention he was Maria and Isabel's friend.

      "Max, it was Liz. I have no doubts about that."

      "Then we need to stick together tonight. She's already been invited into this house so we have to keep our guard up."

      "Guys, this has been bugging me since the conversation started. If vampires really do exist, what myths are true and which are fiction? I mean, they were all fiction before when vamps were fiction but now that vamps are real, does it mean all of the myths are real?"

      "Sam, calm down," Maria purred, knowing that was the only way to calm the curious journalist.

      "I think Max is right. You should all stay in one room. Me and Alex can guard all of you," Michael agreed, ignoring Sam's questions.

      With a nod from Alex, Michael sat near the entrance to the living room where all of them were currently sitting. This would be a long night.

      Max yawned and stretched. "Does anyone mind if I leave the light on?" Hearing no protests he continued speaking, "I think we should all get some sleep. Tomorrow will be a long day."

      Nicole nodded. "You're telling me. I have to get up early to drag Spam and Brookie home before the parental units awaken, then go back to my house to get ready for school. What a pain in the ass," she grumbled. She shrugged it off, setting the alarm on her cell phone. She curled up with Brooke and they both began to fall asleep.

      The others also curled up and went to sleep, beside Alex and Michael of course.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      "Why can't I go back and kill her now?" Liz grumbled.

      "Shhh, you'll get your chance. Right now they're expecting you, but tomorrow is a new day and they won't have their guard up as much. Patience my sweet child, patience. You may kill them all and have him but remember, the babies are mine and the evil never rest," a soft voice whispered in Liz's ear before kissing her neck.

      "I know sire, they will be yours."

      Birth of a New Race

      "So, what are we gonna do today?"

      "Nic, Brooke and Sam should be here soon so they could help on the curriculum."

      "True." Alex agreed as he finished watching the newest episode of "Xena: Warrior Princess."

      "Honey, I'm home," Sam announced as she threw her bookbag down and made a beeline for the living room.

      Maria tackle hugged the love of her life and kissed her softly.

      Michael groaned and rolled his eyes. "Get a room. It's not like there isn't a spare one."

      "OMG," Mary Cherry and Isabel chorused.

      "What is it?" Max asked in a critical tone

      "I think my water broke," Isabel answered.

      At those words every person in the room was suddenly animated and rushing around like chickens with their heads cut off.

      Nicole was in one of Mary Cherry's van's helping Brooke move the seats and get it ready for the mothers to be while Sam and Maria helped MC and Iz waddle to the automobile.

      "Max, take this. It's a book about the babies. It's an alien book but it's translated. I got it from a fiend in Sunnydale," Michael whispered, handing him a thick black book that read "Pregnancy: The Alien Guide."

      Max nodded him a thank you and headed out the door.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      They had been sitting there for an hour. Maria and Brooke were with the mothers to be and the others were forced to wait outside.

      Max sat in thought. He could see it now. The words "Yes, I'm Agent Fox Mulder and this is my partner Agent Deana Scully" kept haunting his mind. That's all they needed right now, the damn feds. He shook those thoughts as he saw Brooke and Maria exit the room Mary Cherry and Isabel had been forced to share.

      They looked up, scaring everyone for a moment with their solemn stares. "They're girls," they screamed in unison.

      Everyone literally jumped for joy, aside from Max and Nic who only grinned.

      "When can they come home?" Sam asked softly, not realizing she had just called MC's house home.

      "They're sewing them up right now and after that and a quick physical for them and the babies they get to go home," Brooke explained since Maria was way too overjoyed to speak. More waiting.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      "Home at last," Mary Cherry sighed tiredly.

      "You two get some rest. We'll watch over the little ones," Sam offered.

      Isabel smiled as one of the babies yawned. "I think we all need a little sleep."

      "One question, what are their names?" Nicole asked curiously.

      "Hope (shout out to Hope Libby!) and Aeryn (yes, I am referring to the Queen of Angst but hey, what the hell)," Isabel whispered proudly.

      "Michael and Alex fixed the room up for you. Go ahead and rest, you need it."

      Isabel and Mary Cherry took Max's advice and went upstairs with the babies.

      Max sat silently, reading the book. "Oh shit," he muttered aloud.

      Age of Innocence

      Max was pacing when her heard a scream. He already knew why so her climbed up the stairs and nonchalantly waltzed into Isabel's room.

      "M-Max," Isabel stammered.

      "It's part of the process. I found this out only hours ago myself. The first four hours they will age rapidly but stop at age ten. They'll start growing normally at that time and somebody who works for the powers that be has already created the papers saying you've adopted a ten year old girl named Hope who's parents were killed in a car crash," Max explained.

      "How. . .how do you know all of this?"

      "I read it then I researched it. The same thing was done with Mary Cherry but it's all confidential so her mom can't find out."

      "How did you find out?"

      "You know how."

      "Oh. What kind of values are they gonna have? A ten year old has morals and values."

      "They will have the same values and moral as if you raised them. The reason for the growth spurt is a precaution so they aren't physically vulnerable or weak."

      "Vulnerable against what?"

      "Anything. They will already have acquired powers of their own but will be ten fold stronger if they work together."

      "What powers will the have Max?"

      "Unlike our powers theirs are element based. One will have the powers of fire and earth and the other the powers of water and air. When they work together, combining their powers, they will have the power of spirit. That's all the book would tell me and it didn't say what exactly their powers do. We will have to figure that out on our own."

      "Can you take them to the pool and teach then to swim? I'll have to tell Cher this when she wakes."

      "Cher?"

      "Pet name, now take them to the pool before they wake her."

      Max nodded and lead the small five year olds to the pool.

      Mary Cherry woke and stretched. Now it was time to tell her.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      "I'll be right back, I just have to grab some stuff from my locker," Brooke whispered then kissed Nic before getting out and running into the building.

      She got to her locker and quickly got her stuff. She ran toward the door and accidentally bumped into somebody. "Ow," she muttered, falling on her ass.

      "Sorry. Are you alright?"

      Brooke looked up and took the offered hand of the nice young man. "Yeah, I guess."

      "Brooke McQueen right?"

      "Yeah."

      "Pleased to meet you. My name's Davede, Davede Shark."

      "Three year in a row undefeated 400 meter dash King Davede Shark?"

      "Well, I don't like to brag but yes."

      "I saw you run last year. You were great. Listen, I really gotta go. My friend's waiting outside for me."

      "Uh, ok. Maybe I could meet you somewhere for coffee sometime?"

      "Sounds great but I can't. Thanks anyway," she replied, rushing back to the car.

      Davede smirked as he slipped back into the shadows.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      "Hope, Aeryn, Max! Dinner's ready!" Isabel yelled.

      All three of them came rushing in and ran to separate bathrooms to wash up for dinner.

      They all settled down for dinner. There was a feast and all at the table dug in.

      After dinner they all sat in the living room to watch "The Fox and the Hound."

      "Todd's my favorite. He's so cute," Hope said with a juvenile smirk.

      "Coppers cuter. The way he tries to howl when he's little," Aeryn disagreed with a impish grin (but of course I had to make Aeryn the diabolical one, it's only common sense. Look who I named her after ::wink:: No offense hun!). Anything to get a rise out of her sister.

      "Stop that you two," Mary Cherry chided softly.

      Both girls lowered their heads.

      "Time for bed," Sam chirped as the clock reached eight.

      "Awwww," both girls groaned as they stood.

      Isabel looked them over and smiled. Aeryn bore Isabel's dark eyes that any normal human would scamper away from if they appeared angry, thin ash blonde hair most unnaturally blondes would die for and sharp blood red lips the stuck out with their lushness. Hope was a little shorter than her sister with sparkling blue eyes even Michelle Phiffer would be jealous of, strawberry blonde hair that was softer than the finest silk on Earth and small pale pink lips that, if pouted, could make anybody in the Universe crumble. "Go on you two, brush your teeth and change into your Pj's."

      Mary Cherry smiled. "I have a confession to make."

      All eyes focused on the Southern Belle.

      "Look, I've acted like a brainless twit for too long and it stops now. I have two girls to take care of and I've found everything I could possibly want. I'm telling you this because you're all my friends and I wanted to at least tell you before I did a 180 on you."

      For a moment there was silence.

      "I'm glad you're finally dropping the act," Nicole sighed with relief. "I mean, I know what it's like to play a part but hun you could be an actress with the kind of act you had to pull off. Classic performance but I'm glad you're really with us now."

      "Thanks Nic."

      The girls returned and snuggled together in a sleeping bag on the living room floor.

      "Iz?"

      "Yeah?"

      "We have to register them for school tomorrow."

      "And?"

      "What name do we use? Will they be staying here with me?"

      Isabel had to think a moment. "Hope Cherry and Aeryn Evans. That's what their birth certificates say. They have to stay here but when I get home I'm going to have a long talk with my parents. We'll work it out."

      "Iz?"

      "Hmm?"

      "I'm scared."

      "Don't be. I'm her and I always will be."

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      "I thought you said tonight sire," Liz whined.

      "Patience my pet. Tomorrow will be the best. It's a full moon and all evil comes out of its resting place. We have forever but tomorrow we can do as we please with them. One more night."

      "Yes sire."

      Darkness Falls and Lightning Crashes

      Maria stretched as she woke in bed alone. She thought then about returning home. What was there for her? A crappy job, idiot customers, alien activity. . .hell, there wasn't anything back home she missed. She knew that she would miss Sam the moment she left and her heart would break seeing those pleading eyes begging her to stay but she couldn't stay away from home forever.

      She stood and went downstairs. Hearing Isabel and Mary Cherry talking she assumed they were trying to figure out what came next.

      "Hey guys," she yawned as she sat with them at the table. "Where are the girls?"

      "School. They had all of the papers ready and everything. We just needed to sign a few documents and they were in. This afternoon we're gonna go shopping to get them school supplies. Would you and Sam like to go?" Mary Cherry replied.

      "I'll ask Sam when she gets here."

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      Shopping had gone well and everyone was tired as hell. It had been a long day.

      Max raised his head. "Oh no," he whispered.

      "What?" Maria asked quietly.

      "They're here. They're coming for Hope and Aeryn. Outside, quick."

      They all went outside, the two girls ignoring their parents by following anyway.

      "If we have to knock down the door we will," the petite blonde commanded to her troops as the occupants of the house entered the courtyard they were in.

      "Why are you here?" Max demanded.

      "Hand them over!" the redhead demanded from behind the blonde.

      "No!" Nicole growled, placing herself in front of the children.

      "Well then, looks like this could get violent and bloody, aye slayer?" the tall dark blonde man replied with a thick British accent from the back of the group.

      "Guess so Spike. I'll take the feisty blonde," the slayer replied.

      "Wait!" Isabel screamed.

      Everyone stared at Isabel. "Why are you after my children?" she demanded.

      "T-They're d-demons," the quite stuttering blond behind the redhead replied.

      "No, they're not demons. They might not be human chica but they're not demons!" Maria explained.

      The slayer eyed them cautiously.

      "The what are they, may I ask?" the older gentleman asked with a slightly British accent.

      Mary Cherry sighed. "Come inside and we'll tell you."

      The Scoobies followed them inside, still alert in case it was a trap. They were led into a big living room and sat down.

      "Look, this whole thing is confusing but bare with me," Maria began, "Mary Cherry and Isabel were the chosen ones to bare a new race. An alien and human race. Don't ask me how it happened but they both ended up pregnant and were in that condition for nine days. It's the alien pregnancy process but that's another story. Anyway, they bore Hope and Aeryn and because some kind of threat that was posed to the two girl, a defense mechanism was put in the growth process. That's why they're currently ten instead of a few day old. Somebody working for the powers that be did their work by creating all of the needed information so legally Hope and Aeryn have been adopted by Mary Cherry and Isabel. Any questions?"

      "So they're aliens?" the perky blonde that was attached to a dark haired man chirped.

      "Yes," Max answered.

      "Slayer? Does that mean you're the chosen?" Michael asked.

      Buffy looked at him with slightly narrowed eyes. "Why do you ask?"

      Giles saw Michael and replied, "that's the boy I sold the alien book to."

      "Yes I am," Buffy sighed, defeated.

      "Ok, I think it would be a really good idea to do a role call so nobody feels weird."

      "Good idea Spam." Nicole grinned. "Nicole Julian."

      "Brooke McQueen."

      "Sam McPherson."

      "Marie De Luca."

      "Mary Cherry."

      "Isabel Evans."

      "Maxwell Evans."

      "Michael Guerin."

      "Alex Whitman."

      They waited now for the strangers to reveal their identities.

      "Rupert Giles."

      "Buffy Summers."

      "Dawn Summers."

      "Willow Rosenburg."

      "T-Tara M-Maclay."

      "Xander Harris."

      "Anya."

      "Spike."

      After the introductions the real fun began.

      "Why did all of you come here, aside from the demon hunt?" Michael asked.

      "We were drawn here by a powerful energy. We thought it was demons because it was negative energy," Willow explained.

      "Liz," Max muttered.

      "Who?" Buffy questioned.

      "Liz Parker. She came here with us but after a few days she went al vampy on us," Brooke explained.

      "That means there are more than one," Buffy grumbled.

      "What do we do now?" Alex asked.

      "Wait til nightfall. Apparently they want the little ones," Spike replied.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      Night had come an they waited outside. "I will deal with the slayer and the vampire. You are to stay away from them."

      "Yes sire," the small group chorused.

      "They're here," Buffy whispered.

      "Right, lets kick some vampire ass!" Sam chirped, ready to stake some bloodsuckers.

      "Wait, let me give you some tips first. We're not slayers or vampires so we have to be extra careful. We always watch out for each other and make sure to have plenty of stakes cause we don't know how many are out there. You have to realize you can't trust them, even if they were your friends. They aren't those people anymore," Willow explained.

      Nicole nodded, sharpening her 50th stake in the last 3 hours. She put in in another pouch. "Hey, Willow, right?"

      "Yeah."

      "Think 51 should cover it? Gives each of us three."

      Willow nodded.

      "We ready?" Spike called.

      "Yeah," the others chanted as Giles opened the door.

      "Max," Liz cried, a vampire holding her arms behind her.

      Max took a step forward but was stopped by a firm hand on his shoulder.

      "It's a trap. That is not Liz," Giles whispered.

      Max scowled at the figure as they slowly drew closer.

      Vampires came crawling out of the woodwork, jumping from bushes left and right. The fight began.

      "Bloody ell," Spike growled as on jumped on his back and another attacked him.

      "Not so fast fang face," Sam cried, ramming a stake into the vap that was attacking Spike.

      Spike tossed the other over his shoulder, dusting it before it hit the ground.

      "Maria, look out," Willow cried.

      Maria spun around, the stake in her hand meeting her attackers heart. "Thanks."

      The battle only lasted a few more minutes when all of the vamps retreated and fled. Only two stayed behind.

      Spike and Buffy looked closely at the figure beside Liz and gasp in shock.

      "Dru?" Spike whispered.

      "I see you've been busy Spike, how are thing at the Hellmouth?"

      Willow shuttered at hearing Drusilla's voice.

      "How?" Buffy muttered.

      "You'd be surprised what a little black magik can do. What do you say we dance, slayer?"

      "Your battle is with me," Isabel growled.

      "You're not the slayer but you'll do." Dru attacked Isabel and the others watched them fight, wide eyed and slack jawed.

      Nicole rolled her eyes as her eyes focused on Liz.

      "You want a piece of me, don't you Nic," Liz mocked.

      "You tried to hurt my Brooke and you scratched me, hell yeah I want a piece of you. To Hell with a piece, I want to mutilate you with my bare hands." Nicole grabbed Giles' sword and briskly headed toward Liz. "You're gonna pay vamp bitch," she growled.

      Liz attacked first, only to have her arm sliced by the sword. She attacked again, this time leaving four gashed on Nic's stomach from her needle sharp nails. Nicole was pissed at the site of her own blood. She began to wreak havoc on Liz, slicing and dicing at her but not killing her just yet. "That's for scratching my neck, that's for Alex, that's for. . ." Nicole growled as she continued abusing the weak vampire.

      Dru turned her back by pure accident and Isabel shoved a stake through her, yelling, "That's for Michael and Alex."

      "And this," Nic screamed while driving the long sword through the vampires heart, "is for Brookie." She panted softly, looking up to notice everyone staring at her. She threw the sword down and headed for the house, clutching her side. She need a nice hot bath and a very big band aide.

      So Long, Farewell

      Nicole winced as she woke. Saturday morning brought her nothing but pain. That was all she could feel. She groaned but forced herself to shut up for she knew Brooke was asleep beside her. She held back tears as she got out of bed and stumbled downstairs.

      "The Scoobies left this morning and now we have to go. Mom and Dad want us home now," Isabel sobbed.

      "Don't worry Isabel, we'll come back soon."

      "Hey," Nic said softly. She went over to the weeping blonde and hugged her gently. "Take all the time you need. I'll keep an eye on the munchkins. Cherry can't handle them alone but I will be here so you don't have to worry."

      Max dropped jaw. What the hell? Had he just heard Nicole Julian offering to watch over Hope and Aeryn?

      "Thanks Nicole. Just try not to teach either of them any of your best qualities," Isabel chuckled, wiping away her tears.

      "Deal."

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      The time had come to say goodbye and nearly everyone was in tears.

      "Sammy, I'm gonna miss you so much."

      "I'll see you again soon, please try not to cry." Sam hugged Maria then let her go so she could board the plane.

      "I'll be back as soon as I can Cher," Isabel sobbed, latching onto her partner for dear life.

      "I know Iz but you have to go now. Smile because when you come back, I'll be right here waiting for you."

      Isabel nodded then headed to into the plane.

      The other's said brief goodbyes and then the Roswell gang, what was left of them anyway, was gone. They would be back but the powers that be only knew when.

      A Happy Ending

      Sam, Brooke and Nicole had temporarily moved into the Cherry residence. Jane and Mike had made a deal with their girls. As long as they spent at least two weekdays at home and kept their grades up then everything was ok, if not, the whole masquerade would end. So far they were doing great. As far as Nicole went, her mom didn't care as long as she was home when her report card was opened and she didn't max out all of her credit cards.

      They all sat in the living room. Sam, Brooke Hope watching their favorite cartoon, Sailor Moon while Aeryn and Nicole played Mortal Kombat 3. When the doorbell sounded, Mary Cherry sprung up from her recliner and answered it. She let out a squeal of joy as Isabel, Max and Maria walked in.

      "I'm so glad you're back," Cherry squeaked.

      "Mary Cherry, I'd like you to meet my friend Kyle and his dad Mr. Valenti. You might remember them from the time you were in Roswell."

      "Hi, come in."

      "What brings you all here?"

      "Well, our parents allowed us to come here and go to school as long as Mr. Valenti came with us. He found a job offer here and here we are."

      "Thank you so much Mr. Valenti! If you and your son need a place to stay until you get on your feet you're welcome to stay here."

      "Thank you," Mr. Valenti replied.

      "What school are all of you attending?"

      "Kennedy High," Max answered with a grin.

      "Peachy. The freaks, the popular and the aliens," Nicole joked as Aeryn and Hope hugged Isabel.

      "Maybe there is such a thing as a happy ending," Brooke said as Sam clung onto Maria.

      This was the beginning of a whole new life for all of them and they knew it wouldn't be easy but they also knew they could make it through anything if they were together.

      Angels of the Night

      Comments: Ok. To briefly explain why I'm resurecting the story. Well it's simple. I left a loose end and I made it too perfect. There will probably only be one or two more stories. I don't know yet but that will end the series all together, for good this time. Anyway. Hope you R&R. This is dedicated to my buddy David ::huggle:: Enjoy!

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      The air was fresh and the night was young. It had been almost a month since the Roswell gang had come back and everything was perfect. Too perfect. Sure the couples had had their spats but that wasn't what irked Nicole Julian. The peacefulness did. Something wasn't right. She felt it. It was like the world was working around them. She'd seen them too. The dark broody people who watched them like hawks. She didn't like them one bit. They were everywhere, even Kennedy High. The first time she'd seen them she'd passed them off for freaks in some geeky guild or something but when their stairs became a ritual, she became suspicious. If they were trying to keep a low profile they sucked at it. On the other hand, if they were trying to intimidate them it wasn't working. Well at least not on anyone but Nicole. She could tell they were bad news but nobody would listen. They all told her she was paranoid. At this point she was starting to believe them. Isabel had told her once, "you know, I'm their mother and I'm not half as paranoid as you. Chill out. Things are great right now. Don't piss on the parade."

      Nic let out a sigh as Hope and Aeryn walked in front of her. Hope smiled back at Nicole then stopped as she realized Nic wasn't grinning like she usually did. This worried the young girl. She'd heard Nic fighting with her moms and fighting was never a good thing. "Aunt Nic, you ok?" Hope asked in a small, soft voice.

      Nicole smirked. Aunt Nic. Those two words caused her to put her front back up. She had to pretend she wasn't so apprehensive around the girls. It wasn't good for kids that young to worry like the adults in their lives. "I'm fine squirt."

      Hope smiled happily as she ran to catch up with her sister who'd run ahead of the group.

      Out of the darkness came cloaked figures. They surrounded the group. There were about ten of them that Nicole could count. An easy match for Max, Isabel, Brooke and herself. But what if they weren't human? One grabbed Hope, another struggling with Aeryn.

      "Don't touch her!" Aeryn screamed and the figure burst into flames. She stood there speechless. Had she done that? In her state of shock she had let her guard down and the shadow she'd been struggling with grabbed her tightly.

      "Take your hands from her you filth," a mans voice echoed. Out of the night he leapt with the shadows, stabbing the form.

      Aeryn ran to Isabel's side next to her sister as the man pulled his sword from the lifeless body.

      "W-Who are you?" Isabel stammered.

      "Davede? Is that you?"

      "Uh, yes. Hello Brooke." He appeared uneasy though he hid it well.

      Nicole didn't buy his act. "What's your real name sword boy?"

      Brooke shot Nic a glare.

      "Don't fault her upon her request Brooke. It's true my name is far different from what it seems. I am known as Drustall Aven Valsad Irkay Dracul, but please call me David."

      "But I thought. . ."Brooke gave a confused tilt of her head.

      "Yes. I'm registered under the alias of Davede Shark as many others of my kind are. We all have earth alias'."

      "Your from. . ."

      He cut Isabel off, "yes. We are the Angels of the Night."

      Max nodded, recognizing the name. "Sworn protectors of the King and his family."

      "Yes Sire. We have not come back to take you from your home if that's what you think. We are here as protection only. The children are our future. I don't mean to be rude but I must be on my way. My brothers await."

      "Wait," Max commanded.

      "Yes?"

      "Who are they? Those cloaked people?"

      "Your worst nightmare." With that he was gone, disappearing into thin air.

      Everyone but Nicole stared at the blank space where the man had been. Brooke glared at her girlfriend. "Spit it out. I know you want to say you told us so."

      Nicole shrugged, surely not appreciating the sarcasm. "Whatever," she muttered, heading back to the Cherry residence. She didn't need this bullshit. She didn't need anything. No, that wasn't true. She needed Brooke. The real Brooke. The one who told her she was special. The one who'd said "I love you" and meant it as more than just a passing thought or something to say. The Brooke she'd fallen in love with. That Brooke had left with Michael and Alex.

      Hope stared at Brooke. "You had no right. You can't see how much you're hurting her, killing her," Hope whispered. She could feel it. All of the agony seeping into her chest, all of the emotions sweeping her senses like a tidal wave. Her power over water using its aquatic influence to let her feel what someone close to her was feeling. She shot Brooke a glare, then ran quickly to catch up with her Aunt Nicole.

      Everyone else looked at Brooke. "I was just joking," she stated.

      Max nodded. "We know but something isn't right."

      Isabel raised a brow. "What is it Max?"

      "Not our concern Iz," Max replied with a hinting glance.

      Isabel nodded and lead Aeryn home.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      Brooke sighed. She'd changed and she didn't like the way she'd ended up. She hadn't been afraid of letting Nic in before but for some reason she couldn't now. It was like her own emotions were turning against her. All she wanted to do was lay in the other cheerleader's arms and cry but when she'd tried they ended up fighting. They'd been doing that a lot lately. She didn't want this at all. She loved Nicole with all of her heart and she couldn't understand why her mind was pushing her lover away yet her heart was crying out for her. It didn't make sense. Something was eating away at her but she just couldn't tell what.

      She gently pushed Nic's door open. Since their last fight Nic had moved into another room, giving Brooke the excuse that she needed space. She smiled, near tears at the site of Nicole stretched out on her bed with Hope curled up against her. The words that child had spoken came back to her now and all she wanted to do was die. She softly padded over to her angel and kissed her on the forehead. "I love you," she whispered, then crept back to her room to cry herself to sleep. That was the only way she ever got sleep. Without that warm familiar body next to her she just felt so empty, so alone.

      Max watched from afar and sighed. Inner turmoil was a horrible thing and he hoped that Brooke would see what was really upsetting her instead of subconsciously guessing what was wrong. He knew what was wrong. He'd seen it before. In Sam, Maria, even Isabel. He knew it would be hard but it had to be done. There was no way around telling her dad the truth about her being a lesbian. He held his head in pain. Another migraine, how appropriate. He trudged back to his room to take some Aspirin.

      Maria snuggled close to Sam with a big goofy smile. "I love you Sam," she whispered with a soft sigh.

      Sam smiled, replying in a tone that was made to seem calm and collected, "I love you too." She hadn't realized she'd sighed heavily until after she had done so and she hoped Maria wouldn't notice it.

      "Sammy, what's the matter? You've been tense and stressed all day."

      "I'm so worried Maria. Mike's not gonna be happy with Brooke's sexuality but keeping it quiet is killing her and Satan. I. . .I just feel so bad cause my mom's cool with it and her dad's a close minded asshole."

      "Bonita, don't blame yourself. I know you are. It's not your fault baby. You need to know that."

      "I know Mar but I just wish I could do something." Sam wanted Brooke to be happy and she knew this whole thing wouldn't be a smooth ride. She nuzzled her face to Maria's neck and let herself feel safe, warm and separated from the world as they fell asleep together.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

      The next day at the Cherry residence after school. . .

      Mary Cherry heard the doorbell ring and frowned. She walked to the door and opened it warily. There stood a man with short light brown hair and sky blue eyes.

      "My name's David. I'm a friend of Brooke's."

      She let him in and showed him to the living room where he was met by Max, Isabel and Maria. "Have a seat," Isabel offered.

      He nodded and sat on one of the leather recliners. "I must tell you of the situation at hand. That is why I am here. I would also like to ask if I may stay here for a little while. The brotherhood would like me to be as close as I possibly can in case anything may happen."

      Mary Cherry looked at the others. Getting their approval she replied, "Sure thing. One rule. Whatever you see go on in this house stays in this house. Can you abide by that rule of secrecy?"

      "Of course. I wouldn't tell anything to anyone. I've been trained in such a way."

      "Why did they send you? I mean, why you? No offense or anything homeboy."

      "None taken. I am of their best. I am their best actually. There is only one above me in rank and I figured you would feel more comfortable with me than any of the other Angels of the Night."

      Max nodded and sat, motioning for Maria and Isabel to follow suite. They did and all three stared at the man, waiting for the information he had for them.

      "As you know we lost the battle for our planet. When that happened a small group arose. Demons. They began to run the planet. Underground my father reconstructed the Angels of the Night and began researching what they could do to regain control of our planet. A selection were sent to Earth but we weren't sent as you were. The brotherhood developed a faster way and that was how we got here. The batch that was sent, including myself, are all half human. However, some show more alien strengths that others, such as stronger powers. That is another reason I am the second in command. Our first mission was to find our King and take him back but by the time we got close the children had been born. We then found the key to our planet but it was too late. The demon leader, Xamoq, waged war on an allied planet and now the only way to stop him is the prophesy."

      "What prophesy?" Isabel demanded.

      "The prophesy which involves your children."

      "I want to know about my powers," Aeryn said firmly as Hope appeared beside her in the doorway.

      David looked at Isabel who nodded permission. "Come here then little ones. Sit beside me. I'll tell you of the powers you posses."

      The children eagerly sat beside the man with grins on their beaming faces.

      "Aeryn and Hope? Am I right?"

      "Yes. I'm Hope," a shy voice replied.

      "I'm Aeryn. Now about these powers."

      "Yes. The powers given to those in the prophesy are beyond the comprehension of the human race and barely understandable to other races as well. Fire with its physical scorching and emotional passion was granted to the Earth child. Earth granted this same child the physical power of life and the emotional calling of any living creature. The second child, just as special, was graced with the physical manipulation of matter and the emotional flow of mankind so when touching she could feel the beauty of a creatures aura. Air bestowed upon this child the physical ability to command and bend the weather to her will as well as the emotional power of hearing the winds cries," he explained.

      "What does this have to do with the kids?" Nicole asked from the doorway.

      David jumped but eased quickly as he'd been taught to do. "It's fairly simple. There is a temple where the key to our planet lies. The only way to open the doors is if they combined their powers to do so. There are no traps within. The other complication is that our King must take the gauntlet. He is the only one who may take it. Once the gauntlet is obtained the war will stop immediately. The demons will be sent back to their hell and things will resume."

      "What the catch?" Sam whispered, walking in and sitting beside Maria.

      "Only the chosen and their guide may go and once the King has put on the gauntlet, he remains the King til death."

      Max smirked as a thought occurred to him. He gave Isabel a scheming look that she'd seen time and time again. "I'll do it," he replied.

      "Hope, Aeryn do you. . ." Isabel didn't even have to finish her sentence. Both girls were nodding vigorously and smiling ear to ear. "Well, I guess that settles it."

      "When do we leave?" Aeryn squeaked hyperly.

      "Tomorrow morning. Have a good meal and relax today for tomorrow will be a long day."

Continue to Strange Occurrence: A Kingdom in Ruins

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