All's Fair in War and Europe by EvilPumpkin

Category:Maximum Ride
Genre:Adventure, Romance
Characters:Fang, Max
Published:2009-11-24 13:17:51
Updated:2012-04-02 10:38:32
Packaged:2021-04-04 14:38:48
Summary:It started out as a standard US Military training exercise. One minute Max and Fang were busy fighting each other. The next minute, they were fighting for their lives. Rated T for now, but might end up M. All-human/AU fic

Table of Contents

1. AN: All's Fair Rebooted
2. Chapter 1: Max

1. AN: All's Fair Rebooted

A/N: I know, I know - updating a two-year-old fic with an Author's Note is unspeakably cruel of me, but if you find this story at all interesting, please bear with me.

It's been over two years and 10,000 hits since this story was first published. I'm no longer a part of the Maximum Ride fandom, and probably some of you have moved on since you Alerted or Favourited. However, I am quite proud of this story and the response it's received from you guys. A huge thank you to everyone who's ever read it, Favourited it, and put it on Story Alert, despite its two years without an update.

This was one of the first fics I ever wrote, and it has a special place in my heart. That's why I've decided to go back and revamp it – hopefully this will be a good thing, since I wrote the original when I was 16, without a betareader. Therefore, I will be taking down the original chapters and reposting them in their (hopefully!) shiny new form.

Just thought I'd let anyone know who remembers this story... or any new readers who just happened to click here, with an unspoken longing for war games, random European principalities, underground resistance bases and the Flock rampaging around Europe in military uniforms...

Watch this space. Muhahaha.

2. Chapter 1: Max

A/N: So here we are again, guys. To all my brand-new readers – welcome! To those who've been here before, and/or are experiencing déjà vu right now... there should be some new stuff here to interest you, especially if you haven't read All's Fair in a while.

The name "Razkavia" is the property of Phillip Pullman (wait a couple of chapters, it'll make sense). I apologise if any of my information on the U.S. Military is incorrect. I had no experience in that field when I started writing, and have no more now, other than Wikipedia fiction and guesswork. Oh, and there is a U.N. Peacekeeping Force that's pretty much as Max describes it - there aren't any U.S. troops involved, though.

It all started, as it so often does, with a letter in the mail.

"Max, honey!" my mom called as soon as she saw the United Nations-issue envelope. "Something for you."

Sure enough, when I ran downstairs the stiff white envelope was lying on the kitchen table. My heart swelled with a mix of dismay and jubilation. I'd only been back for two weeks, and as always, I'd forgotten how comfortable home was during my time away. Part of me hated the thought of leaving my mom and siblings for another tour of duty, which would take me away from them for goodness knew how long. Being on leave was the only chance I ever got to be a regular girl - eating dinner around the table, watching TV, wearing civilian clothes. Surely it was too soon to say goodbye to a normal life again.

On the other hand... who the heck wanted a normal life, really?

I had been a part of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force ever since I enlisted at eighteen. I'd gone through Basic Combat Training just like any other American soldier, but I'd never served in the U.S. Army. I preferred it that way. Being a Peacekeeper allowed me to travel way more than your average enlistee, serving with people from every nationality - you name a country, I'd been stationed there. Besides, I slept a lot better at night knowing that my job was to keep the peace as opposed to killing it.

My mom looked up from the spicy-smelling pot she was stirring, and frowned as she saw me picking up the envelope. "They haven't cancelled the rest of your leave, have they? You'll miss Ella's engagement party, not to mention Ari's birthday." She chewed her lip, sighing." He promised he'd be home for once..."

"Huh? No, it's not that."

Staff Sergeant (Maxine) Ride,

Your leave of absence has been rescinded for training purposes. You have been assigned to a training exercise commencing October 20th2009. The exercise will be coordinated by the United States military and the United Nations Peacekeeping Force. It is codenamed the Angel Experiment.

Participation in this exercise is voluntary. However, your decision and performance will be noted at the highest level.

Please report to your nearest U.S. Army base to confirm your attendance.

Base Commander Batchelder.

Mom turned the gas burner down to a simmer and came to read over my shoulder. "Oh... Oh!" Her frown deepened. "They've only given you two weeks' notice?"

"Uh." I was still staring down at the letter, but I managed to nod. "Looks like it."

"But you're going, aren't you?"

I nodded again, and she sighed. It was hard on my mom, having two kids in the Armed Forces, but she'd never once tried to stop us from going whenever we were called. I guess that as an environmental scientist, she understood the need to be part of something that would help humanity. I was proud of her for supporting us. It couldn't have been easy.

People always got confused when I introduce my mom, Dr. Valencia Martinez. I had inherited her brown eyes, but that was the only trace of her Latina heritage that showed up in my appearance – I was far taller than her, with hair that turned blonde when I was stationed someplace sunny. Her dark hair was streaked with grey, so the difference between us had become less apparent – but we still looked about as unrelated as you could get. The different surnames were due to my dad. They got divorced after Ari was born, and Mom changed her name back to Martinez, but she kept the three of us kids as Ride.

Mom tutted. "Well, you'll miss the party, but that can't be helped. Ella won't mind, I'm sure."

"Ella won't mind what?" asked my sister, sticking her head through the door. Unlike me, Ella was the double of a younger Mom. Of the two of us, she was definitely 'the pretty one'. "Hey, never mind. I have news."

Mom looked up, sharpish: the last time Ella had declared she had 'news', she was getting engaged to my best friend.

"Don't look so worried, Val." I was the only person in my family who still called my mother Mom. "The engagement party's called off."

I had a mini heart-attack. "What?" My head snapped around, finally dragging my attention away from my letter. "You're calling it off?"

Ella rolled her eyes at my horrified expression. "The party, Max. Not the engagement."

I relaxed. Man, that would have been awkward – there would be only so far I could comfort my best friend if the girl dumping him was my sister, and I lived in the unlikely fear that it would happen. He would be really cut up. Of course, my protective instincts went both ways. If Iggy had been the one to break it off, I would have kicked his butt...

"...but the party'll have to be some other time. Iggy's been called on some training program."

That caught my attention. "Huh?"

"Yeah. It's in Europe or something. He doesn't know when he'll be back, but it probably won't be in time." She sat down at the kitchen table, propping her chin in her hands. "Val, can you call the caterers and ask about the deposit? I have emails to send out to all our friends, and the venue." She pulled a face, looking pretty down about it all. "Do you know if Great-Aunt Carmilla got her phone line reconnected yet?"

"Hey, Earth to Ella." I snapped my fingers to recapture her attention; she'd gone into party planning mode. "The program. Is it called the Angel Experiment?"

Surprise crossed her features. "Uh, something like that. Yeah, something about angels. Why?"

I held up the letter, a wide grin was inching onto my face. "Just got the invite myself."

"Seriously?" Ella gaped. "You're going too?" She sounded a little envious. I felt ever-so-slightly guilty... but a training exercise with my best friend? What were the chances? "Call him, it'll cheer him up."

After flipping open her laptop to find her guest mailing list, she tossed me a cordless phone. I punched in Iggy's mobile number. Of course, he might be going somewhere completely different – he wasn't even U.N., like I was, and the military ran training exercises all the time.

Either way, I was about to find out.

The dialling tone rang a few times before he picked up. "Hey sweetie, what's up? We just spoke... I'm really sorry about the party."

I snorted with laughter. "Hello to you too... sweetie," I grinned, speaking loudly enough for my sister to hear me at the table nearby. Her blush was visible under the caramel tone of her skin, and she was suddenly paying very studious attention to her computer screen.

"Max?" Through the receiver, I heard Iggy groan. "Oops. Tell Ella I'm sorry." Too right, Ella was not going to hear the end of this. "What do you want?"

"Oh, that's nice. Just 'cause we're not engaged," I scoffed with a roll of my eyes. I paused for a second before I remembered why I was calling. Then, I'm ashamed to admit, the girliest squeal that had ever passed my lips echoed down the phone to him. "The Angel Experiment?"

There was silence for a second. "No. Way."

"I beg to differ. Yes way. You, me, world-famous training exercise. Two weeks' time."

"Jeez, Max. I can't believe you got assigned! Do you have any idea what the requirements are like to even be considered for it?"

"As a matter of fact, I do." I grinned smugly down the phone. It was the most hush-hush program in existence - not that that had stopped everyone from knowing about it. There were rumours that everything about it was classified, and consequently it had taken on almost mythical status – I hadn't believed that the Angel Experiment actually existed, let alone that I'd be invited to take part. "What's this I hear about Europe?"

"Your test scores must be off the charts," he continued, as if he hadn't heard my question. "How did you manage to hide this from me in Basic Combat Training? And here we all thought you were just another dumb Army blonde." There was an underlying note of pride in his voice, despite the teasing.

"Don't start with the blonde jokes. So I guess you're going as Mess Officer?"

"No, they're training me up." His tone was laced with sarcasm. "Apparently the Army brass have this new strategy where they're sending blind guys out on the front lines."

I almost sighed, but stopped myself before Iggy heard. He couldn't stand being pitied. We had trained together with the U.S. Army, which is where we met, and then he had joined the U.N. Peacekeeping Force, just like me. He'd been a Peacekeeper, like me. I hadn't been there when he met the accident that blinded him. He didn't talk about it often, and I wasn't good with all that touchy-feely crap, so I decided to change the subject. "Hey, you never answered my first question. Ella mentioned Europe when she told me you were going."

"She did, huh? We-e-ell, I'm afraid that's classified information."

"Spill it, Griffiths!"

"No can do. Especially not over a landline."

"You're coming for dinner on Monday," I reminded him.

"Well, you'll get to interrogate me then," he pointed out annoyingly. "Tell Val I might crack if she makes chilli. Pass me over to the love of my life, will you?"

I rolled my eyes. "Yeah, right. You're not getting away that easy."

"I think she's upset about the party being cancelled... we need to kiss and make up. By all means hang around if you want to listen in."

I handed the phone over to Ella with a shudder. I sense Iggy grinning on the other end of the line. "If you'll excuse me, I have to go bleach my brain," I said, loudly enough for the receiver to pick up.

My sister giggled. "He says he'll see you on Monday."

A/N: What do you guys think? There are seventeen more chapters waiting for the reboot, and I'm going to post a new chapter every week. In the meantime I'll get started on the new stuff... of course, asking very nicely might equal faster updates. If you're lucky.

The review button is below - use it and tell me your opinions on the chapter!