The cold night air rips through the material of her shirt, making her arms feel numb. She shouldn’t have removed her jacket, before sitting down with an evil alien. Then she could at least be warm while being pinned to the car, her hands shaking trying to break the psychic hold he has on her body.
“Thank you for bringing me my sword,” he says smoothly. His voice is different than Max’s, more like velvet than a drawl.
“That's why the drug didn't work,” Michael says eyes wild. “He's not an ordinary alien. You're the Dictator. Aren't you?” There is a sneer on his face, one that Liz has never seen before. Hatred seeming to coil off him in waves.
“Well, I'd say it's time for a coup,” Isobel says.
“You really think the little girl who was so easily manipulated by Noah Bracken...” Jones chuckles. He is cruel, Liz thinks, it really should have been simple to see he wasn’t Max. A darkness lies inside the person standing in front of her, one Max couldn’t compete against after resurrecting Rosa.
“One of the weakest on our planet...” Jones shakes his head. “Stands any chance against my power?”
“Sticks and stones,” Isobel shrugs before throwing her hands up.
Whatever power she summoned manages to tousle Jones hair, or it could just be the night air.
“Oh, that may have worked before,” Jones smiles his teeth razor sharp. “But now, in this century, what do you say, uh, you're screwed.”
Liz watches as he taps the sword held in his hands, the alien glass glowing bright in the darkness. “See, this isn't just an extension of my will, this is a reservoir for my power. Turning three against one into an army against three.”
“Really elevating to a new level of supreme ass-“ Michael is cut off falling abruptly to his knees. Followed by Isobel.
“Sit down, and show some respect for your father,” Jones chuckles, “son.” His abilities holding them both in place, on their knees as if they are bowing to him.
“How many people did you kill to get that power?” Isobel spits at him.
“Well, start counting the stars, darling. I'll tell you when to stop,” Jones says arms spread wide.
Liz struggles against his hold, eyes darting between Jones and her friends pinned to the ground. Both of them crying out in pain as Jones flips a switch on the power he is applying, short of breath, like he is squeezing the air out of them.
“Now what to do with you three?” Jones sing songs.
“You let us go,” Liz calls. Trying to put as much force into her voice as possible.
He turns back to her eyebrow raised, waiting.
“Your arrogance does not cover your cracks,” Liz manages tears still falling down her face. “You need something from me. And if you hurt them, I will never give it to you.”
He stills, head cocking slightly to the side. Eyes roaming back up and down her body, like she is an interesting insect that landed on his hand.
“And what makes you think I need something from you?” It’s soft, almost as gentle as Max would have said it.
Liz gulps, “you went through an awful lot of trouble today to get me behind a microscope. You couldn't resist testing what I know.” She watches as something shifts behind his eyes, a confirmation of sorts, letting her push forward.
“You need Max's body,” she pulls at the invisible restraints at her wrists. “And if you're curious about severing connections, then I think you want to be more than just a guest inside of it.”
He stares at her for a moment, a connection seemingly bonding them together. The print on her chest burns as his powers release her, dropping her the inch or so it takes for her to be standing upright.
“Maybe you're not as smart as you think,” Jones shrugs casually. But his release of her was more than enough confirmation.
“I'm as smart as you are confident,” she smiles wickedly at him. Because two could play his game of chess. “And I'm pretty confident you've figured out that there aren't a lot of alien scientists. You're gonna need me.”
“Maybe,” he shrugs. “But I certainly don't need to keep them alive to make you do what I say.”
Liz feels her stomach flip, as he turns back to her friends. His powers making Michael and Isobel scream out in pain.
“No,” Liz pants. “Stop! Please.”
She jumps at the harsh ringing of the gun going off, Jones body being pushed back. His hold releasing, Michael and Isobel’s bodies relaxing their breaths coming more even.
“It's gonna take more than a spindly drug addict with a pop gun to stop me,” Jones sneers.
“Then how about the sheriff and the full-force Roswell PD?” Rosa says gun still aimed at Jones’ chest.
Liz has never felt relief and terror in such force before, her sister saved them but is now in Jones’ direct line of fire. Staring him down with a quirk to her eyebrow nonetheless, challenging him head on.
“Fine,” he shrugs with a smirk. Hand going out to lead a trail of fire to the car, everyone ducking for cover.
Liz’s breath being knocked out of her as Jones’ powers wrap around her wrists pulling her flush to his body. The cool glass of his sword resting against her bare throat.
“Now we are going to leave,” Jones says smoothly. “Elizabeth here bartered for your lives after all.”
“No,” Rosa grits aiming the shotgun at them.
“Rosa,” Isobel puts a hand on her shoulder. “We don’t have a choice.”
Liz nods to them, “it’s alright. I’ll be safe.”
A chuckle resounds next to her ear, deep and disturbing. “Safe is an interesting word darlin’,” he mutters next to her ear.
Liz starts working for Jones, her prison making her feel more and more confined
Jones goes out of his way to keep her fed, genius doesn’t run well on no fuel after all
Couldn’t not work through this fast after this last episode(it’s kinda spotty cause I finished yesterday and accidentally deleted it like a moron and this just doesn’t compare but what can you do)
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
The house is cold. Empty, bare of furniture and identifying marks. It lies on the outskirts of Roswell, inside a neighborhood still under construction. None of the houses listed on the market yet. Making it the perfect place to lie low.
She doesn’t know how he did it, nor does she want to, but the power and water all function. The window in her bedroom is barred up, much like in an actual prison.
Liz splashes cold water over her face, closing her eyes and leaning against the cool marble counter.
It was getting too much, being locked away in this place. At Jones’ beck and call, he had her pouring over files and files of Nora’s notes. Trying to prep her the best he could while her lab was under construction.
She can hear the zombie workers pushing heavy equipment around downstairs, drill drivers going off every couple of minutes.
When she opens her eyes it’s to look at her reflection, take stock of everything around her. She was being pulled apart from the inside out. Dark bruises under her eyes, hair frizzy from the gas station shampoo the monster had supplied her with.
Even with access to a shower, attached to her room, she felt dirty. The constant need to scrub her skin arising every time Jones was in her presence. Because she sold her soul to him. Sold out Max. Even if he would have wanted her to prioritize his siblings over him, it still made her feel sick. Her stomach churning at the thought of him.
“You haven’t eaten,” his voice comes sharply from her left.
Liz’s hands squeeze tighter at the counter top, eyes narrowing. “It’s rude to sneak up on a lady,” her voice is strained. Throat scratching, from lack of drinking, like if she forced her body to shut down it was payback. “Especially when she’s in the bathroom.”
“I will keep that in mind,” he responds coolly. “There’s food in the fridge. Eat.” His voice is harsh, like he is scolding her.
She turns to him jaw set, making sure to glare as sharply as she can manage. The last thing she intended to do was obey his commands like a whipped dog.
“I’m good,” she manages even as her limbs feel heavy. It had been forty eight hours since her last meal, if the fries she had at the Wild Pony counted.
His eyes glint darkly, “fine. Then get back to the assignment on hand.”
She fights the urge to roll her eyes as he leaves, it was too familiar a gesture. One she reserved for people she actually liked. Not people who held her prisoner in a house, deputies outside to shove her back in if she tried to escape. Bars over the windows and cameras in her unfinished lab.
After a moment of lingering in the bathroom she follows after him. It was hard to focus with the ruckus the workers were making, but he would probably start following her around if she didn’t get back to work. Like some sort of overly anxious border collie.
Lucky perks his head up from his dog bed as she hits the bottom of the staircase. He was her number one fan, competing for Kyle’s place as the captain of team Liz. Her chest aches at the thought of him, hoping Alex and Michael had found him by now. While she was locked away in this hell.
“Good of you to join us Elizabeth,” Jones drawls. His southern accent only getting thicker as time wore on.
She hates the chill that runs down her spine as Max’s lips wrap around her full name. He had never called her by anything other than Liz, not even pet names.
“What are you doing?” She asks while glaring at him. Jones had spent the better part of the time he was actually in the house scribbling circles and spirals on random sheets of paper.
A sharp grin splits across his face, “reminiscing.”
It’s as vague as he can make it, as if he knows it will rub her the wrong way. Make her hackles rise and her eyes narrow. So she lets it roll over her shoulders, biting at her lip as she slides onto a barstool. The kitchen was where she did all of her work so far, watching as plastic sheets were hung and her lab was constructed in the next room.
“Why are you here?” She raises an eyebrow as she opens a file. Eyes darting over the charts, the numbers still looking like garbled nonsense.
His pencil freezes, “you’re supposed to be answering my inquiries.”
Liz only narrows her eyes at him, going back to the file, a bit about pods catching her eye. It isn’t new information only the stasis and silver being listed. Explaining what their purposes are. But Liz would be damned if she paid attention to the monster seated across from her. If she let him know that every time he left she poured over his scribbles, cross referencing them to Nora’s notes.
She was beginning to believe he was writing in his native tongue, what it was she had no clue. That would come with time. The one thing she begged for more and less of everyday.
“I have no pressing matters to… attend to,” Jones says placing his pencil down.
“No people to torture or kidnap?” She quips.
“Read,” Jones grits out. “You aren’t alive to incessantly talk.”
A fire starts burning in her chest, setting her blood boiling. “I’m not yours to command,” she grits. “I can read at my own pace, genius doesn’t sit and beg on command.”
His lips quirk up at the edges, an amused look on his face. “I know,” he says smugly, “no one in their right mind would compare you… to anything lesser.”
She blinks, staring at him for a long moment. Everything he says is like a riddle, lies hidden in truths. Deep meanings hidden behind vague word choices. Like he is a riddle she hasn’t quite figured out.
Liz grits her teeth together, “when will I get to work in the lab?”
“Tomorrow,” Jones shrugs nonchalantly. “Maybe by then you’ll cave.”
All she gives him is an arched eyebrow, while she flips the page in the file. Hoping Nora’s words will become less hysterical the further she reads.
“Food,” he says coldly. “I can’t have you dying.”
She does eventually eat, only a slice of pizza before bed. Her stomach growling obscenely when Jones had opened the box. His eyes had gleamed delightfully when she caved in, after that she decided to only eat on weird intervals. Since it made him get so on edge. It was the least she could do, force him to work for her efforts.
The lab was beyond amazing, more high tech then what she, Alex, and Kyle had scraped together to rescue Max last time. His connections running deeper than she would have dreamed, or just his mind control powers.
She angrily shoved the Petri dishes away from her, “¡mierda!”
The cells weren’t working with her treatments, she was exhausting all ideas she really had left. Only one day in the lab and she was back on ground zero.
She shakes her head angrily, looking up at the soft purple glow from the pod. It is shoved into a corner of her lab, under her watchful eye. Max floating not far from her.
“Where are you when I need you, huh?” Her voice is soft, “you’ve always showed up to stop me from mad scientisting before? Why stop now?”
“A sign of insanity,” his voice rings through the lab.
Liz nearly jumps, eyes blown wide. For a moment she actually thought Max was talking back to her, before her brain kicked in at least. She turns to glare daggers at Jones.
He is standing inside the plastic curtains, muddy boots on her pristine lab floors. A greasy sack of fast food held in one hand and a shark like grin on his face.
“Out!” She says voice livid. “You’re making a mess of my lab!” Her entire body freezing when her eyes land on the logo on the bag. The blood pumping behind her ears making her eyes feel like they might implode.
“Your lab darlin’?” He smiles smugly.
“You went to the CrashDown?” She can feel the pulling inside of her, everything getting taut before she snaps. “You went near my papi?” Her eyes squeeze shut, trying to block everything out.
“He was very pleased Max was worried about you,” Jones says smoothly. “He knows you get caught up and forget to eat, thought a taste of home might coax you out of it.”
“Out,” she grits pointing at the curtains.
He cocks his head to the side, “and who died and made you queen of anything?”
Her feet carry her up into his space, a gloved finger poking aggressively into his chest. “You,” she growls, “don’t go near my dad. Ever.”
His smile only widens, “you come out of the lab and eat. Then we’ll discuss where I go and who I see. After you make progress.”
“Ahh!” She throws her hands into the air angrily, “¡dios ayúdame!”
Jones chuckles deeply, “not in the presence of sinners.”
“Out,” she says removing her goggles. Which he seems to take as confirmation of her joining him, so he backs out of the lab a dark glimmer in his eyes.
She hangs her lab coat onto the hook, giving the pod a last mournful look before exiting through the plastic curtain. Her gloves snapping as she peels them off, tossing them into the trash bin.
Her captor is standing by the coffee table, all sorts of food laid out on top. It’s pushed nearly into the fireplace, the room mostly full of the lab.
“What did you get?” She asks sharply, even if she was pissed denying food after hitting a science block was beyond her. Especially her fathers food.
“Arturo packed a bit of everything,” Jones shrugs.
Liz nods, reaching up and letting her hair fall loosely down her shoulders. It’s freeing in a way, like she can breathe for the first time in awhile.
A shiver runs down her spine at the look Jones gives her. It’s dark, analytical. Like he is trying to figure her out by letting his eyes flicker up and down her body. It feels like flames are licking up her legs and chest.
“My dad is off limits,” she says sitting down cross legged at the small table. Trying not to glare daggers at him as she unwraps a burger, his jaw clenched tight.
“You don’t tell me what to do,” his voice is distant. “I’m the one calling the shots.”
It’s weird how he says it, almost like he is afraid that he is wrong. His confidence and arrogance relaxing for just a moment. It’s enough to make Liz doubt, doubt what she knew about him. Maybe he was less powerful than he previously let on. Maybe they stood a better chance then she had guessed.
“Your stuff is in your room,” he says before walking away.
“What stuff?” She calls after him. He doesn’t respond just keeps going up the stairs, presumably to where he sleeps. If he does that, she thinks, it wouldn’t shock her to figure out he just meditated on the ceiling.
He had retrieved her clothes, toiletries, and a couple books. Having apparently stayed too long in her fathers presence. It was comforting though, to wake up in her own pajamas.
Comforting enough that she barely noticed where she is. Until she makes it all the way down the stairs, rubbing at her eyes, to see Jones at the oven. The smell of burning churro pancakes assaulting her senses.
His nose is scrunched up as he squints at the notecard in his hands.
“What are you doing?” She manages.
He looks up jaw locking closed, a fire ignited behind his eyes. “This recipe doesn’t make sense,” he shakes the notecard. “The sugar keeps burning.”
She can’t help the bubbly laugh that escapes her, her heart squeezing violently. Stomach churning that this creature evoked it from her.
“You put the sugar on before you cooked them?”
there’s an inspiration playlist if anyone is interested
Jones continues to keep Liz fed. Much to her dismay she settles into a routine, one he decides to break himself.
Yay I’m not dead! Just working on rip Roswell, one is a Joniz fic so I had trouble writing both. Also, they are weirdly out of character now because of it
So I can’t fake science, and I will be sticking to my original plans even though we now know more about him and Nora and his triad
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Maria scoffs at him, shaking her head wildly. Like this is some sort of game to her, not ready to budge from her side of the bars.
“I’m tougher to break then you seem to think,” it’s spiteful the way she says it.
Jones only smiles, “I’d love to chitchat. But I’m late for my lunch date.”
The woman quirks an eyebrow, “your what?”
“Me and Elizabeth,” his grin only spreads wider. “She enjoys my company.”
It grates on her nerves when he peels back the plastic curtains, his smile bright as he comes to lean against the counter. She narrows her eyes while pretending to focus on her slides.
“You could put on lab attire,” she says sourly. “Maybe not bother me while I work.”
“You haven’t eaten,” he says too soft for her liking.
It had become a habit of sorts, he would drag her out of the lab for lunch. Have food prepared when she woke up and when she left the lab at night. Always food she would enjoy, always waiting for her fully made. He would linger for a few moments until he was sure she would eat, then disappear.
It was the strangest thing she had experienced by far. Him being a caretaker of sorts.
Whatever fatherly instincts had been missing with his interactions with Max and Michael present for her. Except, something in her gut told her it wasn’t fatherly. Quite the opposite actually.
If his lingering gaze was to be read into.
A chill running down her spine at the thought, because she wanted to crack the phenomenon open and stare at with a scientific gaze. Because he and Max shared reflective DNA. She itches to know if that somehow affected their taste in women, if Max being drawn to her had more to do with some preset designation from Jones’ own biology.
But she shrugged the ideas off, purely on the fact Max was drawn to her purely and Jones wanted claim to her. Wanted to control her mind and actions. Keeping her coped up in the small lab, or the little box of a room.
“Lucky wanted to go for a walk,” he says casually reaching for a stack of notes. Gaze flickering over Nora’s markings, “I thought we could have lunch on the go. You like the water, correct?”
Her hands still, the dropper she is holding dripping not one but three drops of iodine before she catches up. “Mierda,” she grumbles tossing the slide in the trash.
She glares openly at Jones, “why are you here?”
“Lunch,” he shrugs again. “I can’t have you going unfed.”
Liz shakes her head at him, the offer is enticing. Leaving this damned house, seeing the sun and just walking. Not to mention Lucky would have a ball, and it always made her day to see the dog galloping about. Even when he ran around the small living space and disrupted her carefully ordered notes.
“Fine,” she grumbles. Headed towards the plastic curtains, removing her goggles as she did so, “but you can’t come in here without at least a lab coat.”
Jones smiles devilishly at her, “if you insist.”
She aggressively peels her gloves off as they exit the lab, turning to give him a scrutinizing look. “So what did you have in mind?”
“The lake,” he shrugs, “it’s man made, but we can’t go out far. We don’t want my son finding us.”
Liz’s heart aches, because she was so far into this she hadn’t even considered trying to run away. The amount of break through a she has made leaving her in an adrenaline high, Jones always feeding her and listening to her rants after she finishes a long day in the lab. It had become second nature.
She was becoming comfortable in her cage.
“I’m going to change,” she says abruptly. “You do whatever you need to.”
It’s silly really, how she closes the door to her room leaning against it like she had lost breath. Like he would have followed up the stairs. Her chest constricting as she yanks open the drawers, looking for anything he could have packed to make this harder on him.
If he wanted to play games, she was ready to play games.
She tries not to smirk at the look on his face, the sundress hitting just at her thighs. Her legs completely exposed as she makes her way down the stairs, “you said picnic?”
Jones gulps, eyes slowly drifting down her body, drinking in her curves. His eyes glint darkly as he licks his lips, “yes darlin’.”
She tries to fight the shiver, but can’t keep it from running down her spine. Jones visibly preening, a sharpness to his smile as he grabs the old fashioned picnic basket. She wants to throw her fist into the wall, because he damn well had an old picnic basket.
They are quiet as they walk, Lucky darting between their legs. Silence enveloping them as they make their way down to the supposed lake, Liz already regretting the short dress. Even if it had made the impact she had wanted, it left her feeling bare before him. Like all her armor had been removed, her red lipstick not nearly enough to combat the burning in his eyes.
“So,” she crosses her arms over her chest, “what made this lunch more important?” She does her best to keep the steely tone she always tries to address him with. It gets harder every day.
“Today is special,” he says vaguely. “And you need exercise, keep your blood flowing and brain workin’.”
Liz glares at him, “still not a dog.”
He gives her a crooked smile, “I know darlin’.”
It’s unfair she grumbles in her head, that his tone could be as smooth as velvet as he simply waved her words away like she was a child.
The lake is like all man made ones, murky and muddy at the end. But it makes for a decent backdrop, if Liz squints she could imagine the mud away.
She narrows her eyes at the blanket and old times radio already laid out for them. “What’s this?”
“Something an old friend dropped off,” Jones shrugs. “Like I said, today is special.”
He places the basket down, turning the dial on the radio until music filters out slowly. Old school, probably music he could remember.
“What is today?” She tries again.
Jones’ eyes turn dark, jaw setting. “Eat,” he nearly snaps. “Walk me through what you’ve learned so far.”
Her jaw sets as she kneels down on the blanket, the cold feeling long of adrenaline rushing through her veins. Because this monster was her captor, churro pancakes or no.
“I think I’ve found something that could stabilize your genetics,” she says sourly. “Which could make it easy to break the tie. It seems to be made by frequencies.”
Jones nods, “good. Eat.” He opens the picnic basket, deli sandwiches and fruit piled inside. With what looks to be homemade ambrosia, not that you could get it any other way.
“Did you steal someone’s picnic?” She gives him a sharp glare.
Jones smiles sharply, “no darlin’, cross my heart.”
Liz narrows her eyes before picking a sandwich, playing with the plastic closure. “So why is Maria in a coma?”
She was already playing with fire, so it couldn’t hurt to push him even more. The sunlight on her skin making her even more brave.
His face is set in stone as he watches her hands move, eyes analytically moving from them to the water. “She has something I need,” he says simply.
“What?” Liz asks, “if it could help me, I mean…” she gulps, “I could get her to tell me. To help Max.”
His eyes go dark at the mention of his son, whether he could be called that. Not that Jones had displayed any fatherly instincts apart from some memory he had shared. Yet, Liz knew there was a biological component to everything. Jones would feel the urge to protect his own, until the inevitable brink where that endangered himself. Self preservation winning out every time.
“My body is dying,” he says flatly.
Liz nods, she had seen the tests they were running on Max. How Jones’ body was a ticking bomb, ready to fall apart in time. The pod insuring he had lived till now, while keeping him imprisoned.
“Nora destroyed something,” he says voice nearly soft. Not quite there, but a vulnerableness to it nonetheless. “An equation that allowed me to make clones, ones that could be kept in stasis. Letting me live through my body’s inevitable shut down time and time again.”
Liz gulps, the idea he had lived this long dying every second enough to make her feel something for him. A shred of sympathy.
“She destroyed it when she did my other clones, after finding a way to trap the energy of a star inside Max. The first healthy clone I was able to create,” he shrugs. “It was in an attempt to keep me from having this body.” He waves down at Max’s skin, making Liz’s skin crawl.
“So you stole it from him?” She asks voice sour.
“To give me more time,” Jones shrugs. A sharp smile, “of course if Maria doesn’t give me the equation I have no intention of returning it.”
Liz grits her teeth, “so I help you disconnect from Max and you make more clones? What then?”
“I return to the Oasis,” he says eyes turning back to her. “You would like it there. It’s full of ocean and rainforest, and life.”
She blinks, it sounds… like a proposal of sorts.
“You’re mind was made for a better world than this,” Jones adds.
Liz chews at the inside of her cheek, it was strange. How open he had become, the sunlight affecting them both.
“Go to a world ruled by a selfish man who is too weak to face death?” She twists cruelly. Heart beating fast, blood pumping behind her ears. Her defense mechanisms kicking in, because for a brief second his eyes had been as soft as Max’s. Something she was not ready to face. The idea that they had more in common than a body.
Jones’ jaw twitches, eyes going dark. A thrill runs through her, as he glares her down. Their fire mingling for a moment, before his face softens again.
“Dance with me,” he says getting up and reaching down.
She furrows her brows, “what gives you the impression I would do that?”
“What gave you the impression I was asking?” He grits.
She glowers as she accepts his hand, letting him pull her up. Arm looping around her waist, pulling her flush against him. A Frank Sinatra song filtering through the radio.
“I’ve never heard this one,” Jones smirks down at her.
She tries not to laugh, realization dawning just how old the man she was dancing with was. They hit a more upbeat part of the song and he swings her out from his body, a laugh falling unbidden from her.
He smiles as he pulls her back to him, her back coming flush with his chest. His hands placed over hers on her stomach. “You are beautiful, Elizabeth.” He murmurs in her hair, placing a kiss to her head.
And she can’t help the flutter in her heart, or the heat rushing to her cheeks as he sways her to the music.
The song in the end is Fly Me to the Moon by Frank Sinatra