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Crouch

by Morphea

Posted to the RoswellSlash mailing list January 2, 2001

Title: Crouch (1/1)
Author: Morphea
Subject: Abandoned, Ava crashes with Liz. Liz/Ava femslash.
Set between Meet the Dupes and Max in the City. Spoilers, yo. R.
Disclaimer: Jason Katims owns Roswell. You know this, I know this.
I own this fic. Do not make any changes to it & keep the header attached, and you have my permission to distribute and archive where ever as you please.
Feedback is delicious.
Thank you, Leta, for Ava's excuse.



Iridescently desperate, Ava crouches at Liz's window and asks thinly if she can stay the night.

"I'll thank you or apologize or go, whatever you want, in the morning -- I just need somewhere safe to stay, now, tonight," Ava says, fingering the hem of her skirt. "Just tonight. I want to be gone, but I can't leave tonight. I've got to get away before *they* get back, but not yet. Too tired. My kind -- they scare me. Maybe this is a bad idea, but you just seem different. I don't know; I really don't know what to do."

Ava keeps her head down; her hair falls in her face and she won't look at Liz. Liz doesn't notice; she can't stop staring at Ava's bruised arms, shaking and shadowed. Of course. She opens the window, and Ava crawls through. Liz catches Ava's kholed eyes for a long, cold moment, and her ankles give. Ava falls into Liz and down with a gasp. Liz's breath catches in her throat, and she jerks Ava up hard, disturbed, enthralled, by the pornographic weakness that's there all night as Ava kicks off the blankets over and over again in her fitful, raspy dreams.

Her tights twist, sharp as diamonds down legs soft as cake flower. Legs not as strong as they could be -- should be -- because Ava was princess, pampered, destined. It was easy; she was easy, easily. No one stopped and screamed and ran and picked her scrawny self back up again and *ran* when the Max-shaped creature said "you're mine" and the world said "you're his" and that was that was that was that. Ava sinks into a fetal position as alien as her independence.

Something sinful in the morning Ava wakes up, disoriented, coughing, and crying. Liz comes over with a glass of water. She gingerly sits at the foot of the bed, but Ava's barely-there whispers draw her up close. Liz murmurs soft somethings back and strokes her dollhair. They pull a quilt up around themselves and huddle together, tight and safe, under the quiet, desert night.

Ava's breaths grow longer and deeper, but she murmurs listlessly into night, "If I tried really hard, I could overpower this reality with the illusion that things had never changed. If I could hold it long enough, the illusion might set. I could try and get my old life back; I could be vaguely dissatisfied instead of absolutely terrified."

She pressed her wet, red mouth to Liz's collarbone, locking her wet, red eyes to Liz's.

"And absolutely free."

Liz shivers; Ava slides in down the surface tension. Her body moves to meet warmth and softer sleep.

Liz feels the flush of new secrets based on trust that certainly wasn't earned but instinctive, she imagines. Too many times to be coincidence; too dangerous to be meaningless. Threats shadow their kind, always. Liz feels mythic, and that pride makes her still body rigid, taut enough so every brush and graze quivers back and forth under her skin, perpetual motion, which is about as possible as Ava should be.

God, she could get a Ph.D. in Is This Really Happening.

Liz wakes up unrested and unsure; Ava doesn't look as helpless or delicate or unreal or untouchable as she did last night. Her make up is smeared on the pillow case, and her boots have ground dirt into the sheets. She doesn't wake up.

Liz leaves luridly aware of her thighs brushing against each other and squeezing together as she walks away from the girl in her bed down the desert, down the halls, down the lockers to class. School's a daze; Liz doesn't remember until third period that it's Max, strong, brave, noble, gone Max, Max, that is making them all ache, not the NotTess.

She sucks on ice cubes during lunch as Michael and Isabel argue. She can't bring herself to feel militant, patriotic, or righteous, no matter how bad she should, all things considered. Michael's scared; Isabel's mad. Liz is out of it. Phoenician feelings alight on her eyes and sweep down her body. She feels nerved; she watches water droplets arch and slip down her wrist. They feel helpless. She shivers and understands why they fall so easily to the little green gravity that looks up and murmurs, "I think I kind of want you."

So Liz closes the door to her room and locks it the moment she's crossed the threshold because she understands science, logic, and reason. This is how things are done.

"They're really gone, aren't they? They've never been gone before," Ava starts. "They've never let me loose. Alone -- I could choke on that word. I could cut my lip on it. I could cut myself to pieces. Feels like heaven. It all happened so fast -- them, this, you. I think I like you best."

With a smoothbore sigh, Ava grips the corner of the bed and swings a leg over, straddling it tightly, planting her boots on the floor and wriggling forward over her hands. Pins and needles lace the back of her neck; she purrs like an F-17. Liz watches her squirm a little, hitching her skirt up her divisive, pale thighs. Dark meat. Dark as danger clear to the bone, she wants it. She wants her. In cold blood, warm blood, green blood, blue blood. She's numb with the politics and their staticized, strategized blood. She wants blood to be blood, running fast under the thin straightjacket of skin, of humanity or not. She wants to stop thinking in symbols. She looks down. Ava narrows her eyes, and Liz knows she speaks that language to the touch. Liz rakes her nails across her forearm and slowly makes her way forward. Ava crouches for the kill. Liz closes her eyes and meets her halfway at a kiss.

*the end*

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