Relapse by I Luv Captain Terror

Category:Maximum Ride
Genre:Drama, Romance
Published:2006-10-22 16:23:45
Updated:2007-06-22 09:07:58
Packaged:2021-05-07 03:53:52
Summary:The sequel to Prisoner. Read it before starting this story. Faxness.

Table of Contents

1. Chapter 1
2. Chapter 2
3. Chapter 3
4. Chapter 4
5. Chapter 5
6. Chapter 6
7. Chapter 7
8. Chapter 8
9. Chapter 9
10. Chapter 10
11. Chapter 11
12. Chapter 12
13. Chapter 13
14. Chapter 14
15. Chapter 15
16. Chapter 16
17. Chapter 17
18. Chapter 18
19. Chapter 19
20. Chapter 20
21. Chapter 21
22. Chapter 22
23. Chapter 23
24. Chapter 24
25. Chapter 25

1. Chapter 1

This is the sequel to Prisoner, please read it before starting this story. ENJOY!

Relapse- Chapter 1

I woke from a nightmare that I wished would never come true. I dreamt that the voice came back making me have another headache and then all the sudden erasers swarmed the house as I blacked out.

I'm now laying here soaked with sweat and my skin feels like it is on fire. Another fever? I hoped not, especially since that could be a really bad sign after having an operation.

I pushed myself from the surface of the bed to a sitting position and finally to stand. My knees about buckled, I felt so weak, but I managed to keep myself up. One hand rested on the bed to help keep my body up and steady. Straightening myself up I felt pain wash over my body, but it was minor to what I had felt after my most recent brain explosion.

"Max." A voice said from the corner of the room.

I turned my head quickly to look over at the chair by the window. Someone was sitting in it, but they were masked by darkness making it hard to see. I looked at the person carefully and began walking over to them.

"Fang is that you?" I asked squinting to see the person better.

"Yeah." He answered keeping his vision locked on what was outside the window.

"How long have you been on watch?" I asked stopping as a wave of dizziness washed over me. I sucked in a breath and looked at Fang to make sure he hadn't noticed.

He didn't, he wasn't even looking.

"Fang, are you okay?" I asked beginning to worry.

I saw him nod at least I thought I did. It was so hard to tell in this utter darkness.

"I thought we got past this whole keep to myself stage." I joked cracking a smile.

"Max, there's something you need to know." He said sounding serious and that's when I noticed his voice sounded different, rougher.

"What is it?" I asked feeling my stomach clench.

He didn't answer, just beckoned me over to him.

I began walking over to him until I finally stopped right behind him.

"I'm not Fang."

He whipped around and that's when the moonlight hit his face to reveal ARI in human form.

I felt my mouth drop open and I tried to scream but no sound came. I was staring at him in horror. How could I not have realized sooner? He morphed in front of me, but I couldn't do anything. I was frozen with shock. He reached his hairy claw out and clamped it over my mouth just as I found my voice and let out a muffled scream.

"Don't scream, Max." He growled.

My eyes met his, but I blinked quickly to break the contact.

I let out another muffled scream.

"Don't scream!" He yelled harshly making me wince.

I could smell his fowl breath as it hit my face.

I threw my knee up and hit him in his 'special' place. Get it? Or do I have to explain that to you? I didn't think so.

He winced then growled at me. He threw his hands up and clasped them around my throat, pushing me back against the wall.

I struggled for air, chocking on it as it came in. I could hear myself trying so hard just to manage one smooth breath. My lungs were begging for it. As though he had just had an epiphany, Ari, released me suddenly letting me drop to the ground. I was gasping for air, clutching my throat and lightly rubbing it.

"Don't do that again." He said lowly.

I looked up at him still breathing hard and holding my neck. I would scream, but I valued breathing way too much right now to risk it.

He reached down and clasped a hairy claw around my wrist and jerked me up suddenly. He threw me over his shoulder and kicked out the window.

That's when I let out the loudest and longest scream I'd ever released.

Ari took me off his shoulder and threw me to the ground. My body landed with a large thud as my head bounced against the nearby wall.

"Shut up!" He bellowed at me.

He raised his boot and kicked my head… hard. All went black.


Max was now out like a light, so I threw her over my shoulder once again. When I was about to exit out the window with Max some one came in the room.


"Say goodnight, Fang." I said then pulled out my tazer gun and zapped him. He was out instantly. What did Max see in him? That was something I could be pondering for a long time.

"Time to your new home, Max." I said to her them leaped out the window and flew to me and Max's new home.

Home sweet home. She would learn to love it.

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews are love!

2. Chapter 2

Relapse- Chapter 2

"Max." Someone said softly as they brushed my hair away from my face.

"Fang?" I asked keeping my eyes closed from the immense pain currently running through my head. Why did my head hurt so bad?

"No Max." The person said with a hint of anger in their voice. Or was it disappointment?

That's when the throbbing in my head suddenly made sense and the events of that night came rushing back. My eyes shot open to see Ari hovering over me. I was frozen as my muscles tensed and my stomach turned. I felt like I was gonna throw up.

"Welcome home." He said with a smile.

At that second I took time to try and read him since he was in his human form. And from what I could tell his smile was genuine. That was even creepier.

"This will never be my home." I said glaring at him.

"You're wrong, Max." He said shaking his head. "You'll learn to love this place."

Ari was really starting to freak me out. The fact that he thought I could actually live here and be happy instead of being with my flock made him seem crazy to me. After all we've gone through it just wasn't possible. We've physically fought more times than I can count. He almost killed Fang twice. Ari and I were never going to be anything but enemies.

"Are you hungry?" He asked me standing up.

That's when I noticed he was in normal clothes, jeans and a black t-shirt. It looked like he actually messed with his hair too. I swore I saw the shine of gel in it. He was really trying hard to be normal.

"Max?" He asked keeping his eyes on me.

"No." I said shaking my head.

"You sure?" He asked crossing his arms.

I nodded looking at the ground.

"Stubborn like always." He said shaking his head in amusement.

"Please, Ari, don't act like you know me." I said looking up at him.

His eyes dimmed a little then he turned away.

"I think I know a lot more about you than you think." He said crossing his arms.

It was weird to see him acting so normal.

"I highly doubt that." I said rolling my eyes.

"It's true." He insisted sitting in a chair in the corner of the room. He put his forearms on his thighs and leaned forward, something I had seen Fang do many times.

I stayed silent.

"You sure you're not hungry?" He asked gesturing toward the door.

"I'm sure." I said looking him in the eyes.

We kept eye contact for a few minutes.

"I'm tired." I lied. "I'm going to get some sleep."

He obviously knew I was trying to get rid of him and surprisingly he went along with it.

"If you get hungry… knock." He said standing up. "And if you want to talk or need anything else... all you have to do is knock."

"I remember." I said suddenly. "We've been through this before."

He gave me one last look then headed out the door.

I closed my eyes and put my hands to my face.

"Please find me." I whispered as an image of my flock passed through my mind.

Fang P.O.V.

"Fang." Someone called from above me.

My eyes shot open to look at Nudge who was looking at me with wide terrified eyes.

"Max." I said looking around.

"She's gone, Fang." Iggy said kicking the wall. "Ari has her."

"I shouldn't have left her alone." I said immediately realizing that me leaving her alone in the room at night was possibly the stupidest decision I'd ever made. Max was in danger because of me. I was supposed to get her out of trouble… not cause it.

"Fang, you can't blame yourself." Iggy said turning toward me.

I remained silent.

I needed to focus on finding Max.

AN: Hope you liked it! Sorry it is taking me so long to update. It won't take as long next time.

3. Chapter 3

Relapse- Chapter 3

I was sitting in my room… my prison really. I sat on my one person bed that was pushed up against the wall, so one whole side was touching. My back was against the wall, my knees were brought up to my chest with my arms pulling them in loosely.

As I surveyed the room I noticed it was actually a really nice room, except for the fact it was being used to keep me imprisoned. I was the prisoner and it was my cell.

There was one window with a lock on it and bars. I would be sure to test those out. There was a chair in the corner of the room next to the dresser.

I walked over to the dresser, curious. I slid one of the drawers open to see a variety of shirts. Regular white t-shirts, dress shirts, and 'cute' shirts with 'cute sayings.

The next drawer held sweatshirts, hoodies, and long sleeve shirts, the dressy kind and the regular kind that were more athletic looking.

The one after that had a bunch of different pairs of jeans and jogging pants.

Then there was a drawer with shorts, skirts, and skorts, below it was a drawer with dress pants.

Creepiest of all was the last drawer was the 'unmentionables' a.k.a. bras and underwear. I slammed the drawer shut then went over to the closet.

I opened the closet to reveal its contents. There was shoes at the bottom, all kinds of shoes. High heels, tennis shoes, flip flops, etc. Next to the shoes was a plastic container with socks of all colors and kinds. On the rack, hanging, were… dresses. Dresses with glitter, some with flowers, some plain, etc.

By this time Ari had managed to completely freak me out. This was too much to process.

I walked over to the bathroom to see shampoo, toothpaste, and everything else I could possibly need… I mean EVERYTHING. He had tampons and pads in their own drawer.

This was crazy.

I walked from the bathroom to sit on the bed the same way I had before.

"Max." Ari said from behind the door as he knocked.

I didn't answer, just stared at the door.

I heard him sigh then the door opened and he walked in with a tray of food.

"I'm not hungry." I said keeping my eyes on him. He looked up at me and said, "Now we both know that's not true, don't we?"

I stayed silent and turned my head to peer out the window. I wished I could be outside with my flock right now, flying free.

I felt the sting of tears on my eyes, but forced them back.

"Max, this is only as hard as you make it." Ari said softly.

He placed the tray on the bed. I gave it one quick glance then turned my head back to the window.

"Look, I know you miss them, but I'm doing this for us."

The way he worded that made me look at him with surprise.

"For us?" I questioned feeling rage. "You're not doing this for me. You're doing this for you and you only. All you care about is yourself."

"I'm doing this for you too, Max, whether you believe it or not." He said sternly. "I'm trying to make you happy."

"Happy?" I asked with a bitter laugh. "You'll never be the one that makes me happy."

"And Fang will?" Ari asked coldly.

"Yes," I said surely. "Him and the rest of my flock. They're my life."

"What is so special about them?" He asked seeming puzzled.

"I love them." I answered, my voice filled with emotion.

"You can love me too." He said standing up and walking over to me. He sat on the bed. "Just try."

"It's too late." I said shaking my head. "We've been through too much. I can't forgive you for all you've done."

"Yes, you can."

"No, love is something you have to earn, just like trust." I explained furrowing my brow.

"I know." He said with a nod. "That's why you're here."

"This isn't going to earn my love." I said blinking in shock.

"Maybe not." He said with a shrug. "But I've got to try."

"This is crazy." I said shaking my head. "You're obsessed."

"I'm doing what you've forced me to do." He said focusing his gaze on me. I avoided eye contact.

"I haven't forced you to do anything." I said bitterly. "This is all on you."

He stood then turned to me and said, "Give me a chance. I promise I'm not just doing this for me. I won't hurt you."

Then he walked out of the room.

Finally, I let the tears fall, let the emotion ooze out of me. I buried my face into my arms wishing with every breath in me that I was back with the flock. Back in Fang's ropy arms with the flock whispering sweet encouraging words while their hands were placed comfortingly on my back and in my hair.

I needed to pick myself up and find a way out of here. I couldn't keep moping around and waiting for the flock to come for me. They would come for me, but I couldn't depend on them. I'm the leader and I need to get myself out of this, like before.

First target… the window.

AN: Sorry for the bunchiness. I'm uploading using a different document type since I have a new computer, so I had to go through the whole thing and space everything out right. Hope it is better now.

4. Chapter 4

Relapse- Chapter 4

Fang's P.O.V.

Time ticked by slowly, every second was precious time lost. I'd never admit it to the flock, but I had no idea what to do, what happens next.

Max is gone. She's been gone for hours and yet we're still here at the house with no plan. Some leader I've turn out to be.

The flock was still snug in their beds, they don't know about Max yet. I only awoke an hour ago. And I've been sitting on the floor thinking about my next move in that hour.

Nothing seems worth the try, no plan sticking out and seeming the best choice.

I had to get her back somehow. As the unofficial second in command it was my job and responsibility to bare the burden of forming the plan and setting it in motion. Max's safety depended on me.

Max. Her name burned my heart.

I tried to push all thought of her from my mind but no matter how hard I tried she was all I could think of. My mind was fixated on her.

I'm worried. I'd never let the flock know that or even suspect, but I am. I'm worried for Max and for the flock. Max could get hurt or be trapped with Ari so long she might go crazy. And the flock… we're lost without Max. She's the leader and we need her, because so far my leading skills have not developed.

I pulled myself from the floor of Max's bedroom and walked out the door after one last look out the window. My false hope of Max's return to us shone through for a brief moment ending in disappointment.

I walked around knocking on the flock's bedroom doors and waited for them to all step into the hallway. When they did I could see the confusion upon their faces. They were expecting Max. She was usually their morning wake up call, not me.

"Meet in Max's room." I said turning and walking back into the empty room.

"Fang, what's going on?" Iggy asked me obviously catching on that something was wrong. He's a smart, intuitive bird kid.

"We've got a big problem." I said honestly as the rest of the flock entered the room.

"Max?" Iggy asked wide eyed.

"Yes." I said quietly.

"Is she okay?" Angel asked looking ready to burst into tears.

"I think so." I said honestly.

"You think so?" Iggy questioned. "Fang, where's Max?"

I was quiet, ashamed to admit that Ari had slipped right through my fingers.

"Fang?" Iggy pressed. "Is she alive?"

"Yes, she's just gone."

"Gone?" Nudge asked furrowing her brow.

"Ari got her." I admitted.

"What… how?" Iggy yelled.

"He took her in the night, came through the window."

"I thought you were watching over her." He said shaking his head.

"I was, he knocked me out." I said crossing my arms and bowing my head to look at the ground. I felt like I could hurl.

Iggy was quiet along with everyone else.

Finally he spoke, "So what do we do now?"

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews are love!

5. Chapter 5

Relapse- Chapter 5

I tugged at the bars on the window for the third time, but nothing happened. The bars were strong and new, they weren't coming off.

I heard the lock on the door turn as I sat down upon the bed once again. Ari walked in, human form like last time. He sat on the bed next to me keeping eye contact with the door straight ahead.

I sat still trying not to breathe too loud. My eyes shifted over to look at him and I could see he was trying to find the right words to say. Sometimes he seemed so human while other times he was pure evil, just like his father. Right now I didn't dread being in the same room with him like I had before so many times, but don't get me wrong I still wanted out. I still wanted my flock and nothing could ever change that.

"I know you're angry with me." Ari said taking a deep breath. "And I guess you have reason to be, this isn't fair to you."

I stayed quiet to see where this was going.

"That's why I'm going to…" He looked over at me with sullen eyes. "…let you go."

My mouth dropped open and I turned my head to look at him.

"You're serious?" I asked with hope oozing from my words.

"Yes." He said with a nod. "Feel free to take whatever you want from here… clothes, food, anything…"

"This isn't some kind of sick joke?" I questioned carefully.

He shook his head slowly. He seemed so distant.

"I don't understand." I blurted out. "Just an hour ago you were yelling at me and telling me how much you needed me to love you and care for you… and now you are saying I can go. No strings attached."

"Max, can't you just go without asking questions?" He asked meeting my eyes. "Stop waiting for the bottom to fall out."

"I can't help it." I said honestly. "It's always happened before."

"Not this time." He said shaking his head gently.

"Thank you." I said in whisper then I did something that surprised both of us. I kissed his cheek. "I won't forget this."

He looked at me for a few seconds then stood and walked from the room.

I watched him leave then stood and grabbed a clean pair of clothes. Now it was time to get back to my flock wherever they may be.


Iggy was quiet along with everyone else.

Finally he spoke, "So what do we do now?"

What was I supposed to tell him and the others? I had no clue what to do. I knew we had to find Max, but there was no way of finding her on our own. I wasn't gonna chance another stop at The School or Anne's. We were stuck with no plan and no leader. Sure, if you asked the flock they'd say I was the leader now, but I'm no where near leader material. The only qualification I had was that I was second oldest, but that was enough for the flock to trust in me. Too bad my best plan was sitting and waiting for Gazzy to get a vision. Some leader I make.

AN: Hope you liked it!

6. Chapter 6

Relapse- Chapter 6

I had been flying for a few hours meaning I should arrive at Dr. Martinez's any time now. And there it was… the house came into my view and relief flooded through me. I just hoped the flock was where I had unwillingly parted from them.

I descended quickly eventually landing gracefully in the clearing in front of the house. Walking slowly to the door I could see a little boy looking out from one of the spare bedrooms. It was Gazzy.

"Max!" Angel screamed in joy as she ran to me and threw her arms around my waist.

"Hey sweetie." I said kneeling down and enveloping her in a hug.

"We were so worried." Nudge said from behind Angel as Iggy, Gazzy and Fang walked out the door and over to the three of us.

"Max." Fang said taking me in his arms.

"Miss me?" I asked with a laugh.

"Of course." He whispered into my ear.

He pulled away from me then asked, "How did you escape this time?"

"I didn't." I answered truthfully. "Ari let me go."

"He just let you go?" Fang asked furrowing his brow. "No one made him?"

"I guess he's not as bad as we thought he was." I said with a shrug.

"Right… and we're normal." He responded sarcastically.

I rolled my eyes in response as a smile formed on my lips.

"You okay?" He asked looking me over.

"Yeah." I said with a nod. "He didn't hurt me."

"You got lucky then."

"He didn't hurt me before either."

"I know." He responded crossing his arms. "He just threatened it, right?"

"What are you implying?" I questioned.

"That Ari is not someone you should be defending." Fang said uncrossing his arms and throwing them to his sides in frustration.

"All I did was state the truth, that he didn't hurt me." I said furrowing my brow.

He looked away and stared into the tree line.


"What?" He asked seeming annoyed.

"I need you to understand." I pleaded.

"Understand what, Max?" He questioned looking at me again. "Are you an Ari advocate now?"

"I just think he deserves a little slack."

"A little slack?" Fang asked looking at me with disbelief. "Can you hear what you're saying?"

"Yes, Fang, I'm not deaf." I muttered becoming annoyed too.

"Then why are you defending Ari of all people?"

"He let me go." I whispered trying to get him to understand.

"And that just makes all the time he spent taunting us and trying to kill us forgiven?" He asked raising his voice. "Who are you and what have you done with Max?"

"You're not funny." I replied shaking my head and turning away from him.

"I'm serious Max… you've changed." He said furrowing his brow and lowering his voice.

"Maybe I have." I said crossing my arms.

He was silent for a few minutes before saying, "Flock, go inside."

They all looked at me and I gave a small nod of approval.

Iggy began to lead them inside, but Angel stood her ground and stared at Fang and me both.

"Stop fighting!" She shouted.

Fang and I both looked at her in surprise.

"Angel, let's go." Iggy said in a stern tone.

"She's right Iggy; they need to stop yelling at each other all the time." Nudge commented.

"Just let them settle this on their own." Iggy said looking at the two of us. "They always do."

He gave us a look that said 'don't make me a liar'.

Then they headed inside. As soon as the door was closed behind them Fang broke his stare and ran a hand through his hair.

"What did he do to you, Max?" He asked me looking sad.

"Nothing." I said softly shaking my head.

"Then why are you taking his side?"

"I didn't know there were sides to this."

"There always has been." Fang responded as his eyes bore holes into me. "Us against them and up until now you've always stuck with the flock."

"The flock will always be number one." I said looking at him in shock.

"Then act like it." He said getting in my face.

I looked away from him to study the ground.

I was so confused. I didn't know why I was defending Ari and why I didn't care that Fang was angry with me right now.

There have been so many times that I felt like I could throw up because having Fang mad at me was worse than anything. He's always been the one I leant on and the one I confided in. I trust him more than anyone. So what has changed? Was it me?

"Max." Fang said softly.

I looked up at him with tears in my eyes.

He brought his hand up to my cheek and looked into my eyes.

I stayed still not knowing what I wanted at that moment. Did I want Fang to kiss me or did I need time to think about this whole messed up situation.

As he leaned in to kiss me I pulled away and walked into the house leaving Fang more confused than he's ever been before.

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews are love!

7. Chapter 7

Relapse- Chapter 7

"Max." I heard my name being called behind me.

I could hear the confusion and anger in his voice even though he was trying hard to hide it. He didn't like showing feeling… he was more apt to get hurt. And what is killing me most right now is that I'm the one hurting him.

I don't know what's wrong with me… what's changed. All I know is I'm scared. What if Ari did something to make me this way. What if I've been brainwashed or hypnotized or something. Do I just don't feel that way toward Fang anymore? I don't remember ever falling out of love with him. Yet I don't remember exactly when I fell for him in the first place. I'm a fourteen year old mutant girl with a confused heart. Wow, that sounds really pathetic. When did I become a character on a soap opera? I can just see it now… Mutants of our Lives… no… Mutant Hospital. Insert me rolling my eyes here.

"Max." Fang called out to me again.

A minute later his hand was on my shoulder turning me toward him. His hand moved to my cheek so his thumb could slide along my cheekbone.

"Don't… please." I whispered.

"Why?" He asked stroking my cheek a second time.

"I don't love you." I heard myself say coldly. Had I meant to be so cold?

"Take it off her, she's seen enough." I heard a voice say.

That didn't sound like the normal voice that unpleasantly popped up every now and again for a visit. This sounded different. This was Jeb.

Then a blinding light shown on me as something was taken off of my head.

Where was I?

One moment I'm being totally unlike myself around Fang and the next I'm blind from immense light. I shut my eyes and brought my hands up to shield my face. My heart was pounding rapidly and my pulse was faster than it had been just seconds before.

"Maximum, it's okay." I heard Jeb say soothingly as he removed my hands from my face. "Open your eyes."

I considered for a second what I had to lose. First there was my sight. Second there was my dignity. But I opened my eyes anyway, because my confusion at this moment was at an all time high.

When my eyes opened to their full capability I looked upon what appeared to be some kind of lab. I was laying on a silver table with a white sheet over me. Panic swept across me as I saw my shirt stained with blood. What had happened to me and why didn't I remember it?

I tried to speak to get answers to the questions I was dying to know, but nothing came out. My throat was too dry. So I tried a second time and heard a pathetic roughly sounded whisper choke out one word, "thirsty". If I had any dignity left it had just left me.

"Dr. Wallace get some water." Jeb instructed a young woman probably in her mid twenties. They were really starting them out young now. Usually all the white coats were old and mostly males. I'd only seen two other females beside this one.

The whitecoat came back with water and passed it over to Jeb. He lifted my head as I gulped down water in large sums so large I almost choked a few times.

"Easy Maximum." He instructed soothingly.

I pushed the water away and wiped my mouth of stray rivers of the cold liquid.

"What… what's going on?" I gasped out.

"You've come back home." He said with an affection grin.

I didn't have to ask him to elaborate I knew what he meant… The School. I could feel the dread run through me. I was in mutant H-E- double hockey sticks.

"How did I get here?" I asked feeling my eyes widen and my lips part.

"Ari handed you over to me." He informed me.

"What… no… Ari let me go." I said confusion evident in my voice.

"No, we let you think he let you go." Jeb said shaking his head lightly.

"But I was back with my flock…" I said furrowing my brow.

"That wasn't you, Maximum, that was the other you. The goggles we had on you functions with a chip in her brain to make you think you were the ne performing those actions and saying those things to Fang when really you were just an innocent bystander looking on." He said sitting down in an empty chair next to the table I laid on. "It is a magnificent invention, great piece of work."

"Your flock now thinks you are with them and they won't come looking for you." The woman whitecoat explained. "You'll be here for quite some time."

The worst thing about this whole situation was that I believed them.

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews are love!

8. Chapter 8

Relapse- Chapter 8

I was placed in a room with glass walls, but it appeared to be the bullet proof kind. Plus there was a security system connected to the walls, so if I touched the walls I'd get a nice shock. How'd I know… let's just say I about electrocuted myself. Yeah, I'm a smarty.

As I lay on the floor in pure dread and distrust running through me, I felt hopeless. Jeb was continuing to look at me from outside the walls with a worried expression etched on his face like he had been for about a half hour. The moment the shock had ran through me he was by the glass seemingly very concerned.

It was so hard to figure him out. One moment I think he is the most amazing man to ever grace the earth, but then that's destroyed the next moment when I find out he's the reason I'm a winged freak in the first place.

I don't know who to trust no surprise
(Everyone feels so far away from me)
Heavy thoughts sift through dust and the lies
(Trying not to break but I'm so tired of this deceit)

I could tell Jeb wanted me to trust and confide in him, but I'd never be able to do that ever again. I've given up on him, because I don't give second chances. He didn't deserve one anyway. It's obvious he doesn't regret it, he'd probably tell me that straight to my face without having to break eye contact.

But I did need someone to trust right now. Unfortunately the only people I trusted in the world were far away from here with no idea where I was, at least that was the likely reality at this moment. I wish it were different, but there couldn't be any way the flock knew where I was, because from what I saw that imposter was warming up to them and fooling them into thinking I was back, safe and a cold hearted jerk with feelings for Ari. Ew.

(Every time I try to make myself get back up on my feet)
(All I ever think about is this)
(All the tiring time between)
(And how trying to put my trust in you just takes so much out of me)

Pulling myself from the ground to stand up straight was a huge task. I wobbled a bit making me believe I'd actually fall back to the cold white tile of the ground. My body ached, especially my head that was suffering from a dull ache behind my eyes.

Jeb had told me earlier (when he was placing me in my room) that he wouldn't hurt me. Funny enough part of me seemed to believe him… probably because I was supposed to save the world and that couldn't happen if I was dead. He also went on about how I could trust him and I'd be out of here soon enough.

Take everything from the inside and throw it all away
Cuz I swear for the last time I won't trust myself with you

That had surprised me. I didn't realize he had any intention of releasing me.

I asked him how long I would be here, but he only responded saying that was confidential. He did, however, say it would be sooner than a month and if I trusted him and did what he said it would be sooner than that.

Tension is building inside steadily
(Everyone feels so far away from me)
Heavy thoughts forcing their way out of me

I walked over to the glass as everything he said played in my head. I was literally inches from toughing the glass that separated me from Jeb. My eyes were connected with his, both of our faces completely unreadable.

Something was drawing us to each other. My guess was wonder and distrust.

(Trying not to break but I'm so tired of this deceit)
(Every time I try to make myself get back up on my feet)
(All I ever think about is this)
(All the tiring time between)
(And how trying to put my trust in you just takes so much out of me)

My feelings on this whole messed up situation are mixed. It would be much easier if I could trust in Jeb, but that wasn't plausible as of this moment.

Escaping would be my best bet. After all according to Jeb they wouldn't hurt me, so the worst they would do to me if I got out would be to recapture me. Then I'd just work on planning my next escape.

The only time I'd try trusting the man on the other side of this glass is when I had no other options. Right now, I still had plenty.

Take everything from the inside and throw it all away
Cuz I swear for the last time I won't trust myself with you

Jeb began walking toward the door, stopping in front of it and scanning some kind of card before the doors popped open and he entered my glass room.

"Maximum, it's time for you to trust me." Jeb said approaching me.

I stayed silent as I looked him over from head to toe. One thing caught my eye as I did so, a needle in his pocket.

Finally I spoke, "What's that for?"

"You." He said following my line of vision to the shiny metal object. "Do you trust me?"

Again I didn't respond.

"Do you trust me?" He repeated.

I won't waste myself on you

"No." I growled walking closer to him.

His eyes glimmered with surprise and fury, but that only lasted a few moments. I kicked the side of his head, knocking him out cold.

As he hit the ground I whispered, "Nighty night Jeb."

Waste myself on you

I searched him for the card I had seen… and there it was in the inside pocket of his white lab coat he always wore.

I'll take everything from the inside and throw it all away
Cuz I swear for the last time I won't trust myself with you

As I pulled it from the fabric Jeb's hand shot up and clasped my hand. For a moment I stared at his white knuckles, shocked that he recovered so quickly. But I soon emerged from my puzzlement to place a hard punch with my left hand to his face.

And that felt good.

Everything from the inside and just throw it all away
Cuz I swear for the last time I won't trust myself with you

I ran to the door and scanned the key. The doors popped open and I ran through the halls until finally making my way outside to look upon the rising sun.

AN: Ok, sorry to whoever I told this was the chap where a character would using questionable behavior, that is next chapter. I forgot about this chap, since it's been so long since I wrote it. Hope you liked it! Reviews are love!

9. Chapter 9

Relapse- Chapter 9

The flight back to my flock seemed like the longest I've ever experienced. Thoughts were running through my head and most of them were eating away at me, bit by bit.

My clone was impersonating me, breaking Fang's heart… making him think I've developed feelings for Ari. She was supposed to be dead. I had killed her in that room as my flock and numerous whitecoats looked on.

When I got my hands on her she'd be dead again, because no one tries to take my place. That was my flock and Fang was my boyfriend! Yes, I finally used the term 'boyfriend' referring to Fang, because in all honesty that's what he is.

God I missed him and the others. I needed to see their faces and hear their voices. I needed Fang to tell me everything was going to be okay, just like all the other times I needed him to be there. He never let me down, he only convinced me more each day that if all else fails in my screwed up life that I could still trust in him to be there for me.

I looked below me for Dr. Martinez's house, I'd be approaching it any moment.

And there it was standing out among all other houses and the surrounding nature like a breath of air to aching lungs.

I began my descent aiming for the backyard (the ethical thing to do) so I wouldn't be spotted by anyone happening to be watching the clouds or searching for airplanes.

I became aware of Angel and Gazzy in the backyard not paying attention to me as my feet hit the ground, but seconds later their heads whipped my way and they seemed confused.

"Max?" Angel questioned wrinkling her forehead. "I thought you were inside."

"Angel, I need you to go get Fang." I said ignoring her suspicion.

She looked over at Gazzer and he gave her a nod of approval, that's my little trooper.

"Max, is that really you?" He asked after Angel went inside.

"Yes." I said trying to get him to see I was the original. "The Max inside is impersonating me."

He looked back at the house then at me.

"Gazzer, go get Max." Fang called out hurrying over to the two of us.

That hurt. He obviously thought I was the imposter, the one that broke his heart. As I looked him over I could see the tightness of his muscles and the tiredness in his eyes. I was going to kill that wannabe for doing this to Fang and the flock.

"She's not the real Max." I growled in frustration. What can I say I'm insulted he couldn't see the difference between us when he claimed he saw it the first time this happened.

"We'll just see now won't we?" He asked smugly.

It took everything in me not to punch him in the arm right now. He was gonna get it later.

"Guess we will." I said surely back.

"What are you doing here?" The other Max yelled running out of the house with the rest of the flock behind her.

I couldn't keep myself from tearing her limbs off, I attacked.

I lunged at her knocking her to the ground with enough force to knock the breath from her lungs. I threw a punch at her identical face, then another.

Strong arms pulled me from her as I fought against them so I could break Max II's neck.

"Fang let me go." I yelled struggling to break free.

"Max, are you okay?" Angel asked walking over to my clone.

Why couldn't they see I'm the real Max, the original?

"Why didn't you fight back?" Nudge asked her wide eyed.

"Shocked I guess…" She explained looking me over. "I thought I killed her."

"Excuse me? Who killed who?" I asked sarcastically. "I killed you in front of the flock and the whitecoats."

"You wish." She spat.

I tried to lunge at her, but Fang held me back. Then he did something I never thought he would. He threw me to the ground… and it actually hurt a lot considering I smacked my head against the cement of the sidewalk.

I crumpled into a ball holding my head. I think more than anything my feelings were hurt more than my body. Sure, my head throbbed with sharp pains, but my heart hurt so much more. Fang was slowly betraying me along with the rest of the flock.

I rolled onto my back and opened my eyes. Fang was over by the other Max, helping her up. Angel was staring at me intently probably trying to read my thoughts.

"Sweetie, I'm the real Max." I said aloud. "My thoughts will confirm that."

"Angel?" Fang questioned seeming confused.

"I can't tell the difference." She said sounding upset while she shook her head. Her blond curls bouncing sadly along with the motion.

I sat up putting my hand to my head… I was bleeding. I winced as my hand touched the cut then looked up at Fang with a harsh glare.

"She's new and improved." I explained. "She's more like me than she's ever been."

"Sounds like you know and awful lot about this situation." Iggy said thinking things over. "Wouldn't that mean you're the fake."

"I'm not." I said shaking my head slightly making my head hurt. "Jeb explained everything and he showed me this fake talking to Fang."

Fang's eyes shifted over to me in thought.

"Come on Fang!" I shouted. "You know I would never like Ari, let alone break your heart for him!"

This was good I could see he was starting to think things over.

"Why don't you stop meddling in our personal life!" The other Max shouted at me. "I went through a lot with Ari and when he let me go I saw he wasn't as bad as I've always thought."

"She's lying." I said looking Fang in the eyes. "She was never with Ari. I was."

"Yeah, probably planning how to turn my flock against me!" She yelled at me.

"Lying again… I was with Ari. He pretended to let me go, but instead of letting me go he handed me over to The School. I woke up on a metal table, later they put me in a glass room with an electrical current running on the walls. Jeb came in with a needle, but before he could inject me I attacked him, stole his key, and left The School untouched."

"Awful convenient to escape so easily." My look alike commented smugly.

I couldn't stop myself… I stood and lunged at her again.

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews are love! And yes I was going to let Max escape on her own :) I've had my chaps written for a month or two. They're posted at the official Maximum Ride site. I've got 17 for Relapse up. And 26 for The Sickness. 27 comes tonight on the board.

10. Chapter 10

Relapse- Chapter 10

I threw punch after punch hoping to break something in her way too similar face. I was going to make sure there was some kind of difference between us.

Again, Fang's arms parted me from her while I struggled to come loose of his tight grip.

"That's enough!" He yelled backing up a few feet, taking me with him. "Flock, go inside."

They seemed to stand there a few second debating whether to listen then went inside.

"Okay, we're gonna settle this without violence until of course I find out which one of you is Max, then you can go at it." Fang said letting me go and standing between us.

"Whichever one of you is the real Max needs to figure out a way to convince me, because I can't tell the difference." He admitted sounding defeated. "I'm sorry." Now I felt a little guilty for wanting to hit him earlier, but that wasn't going to stop me from doing just that later on after this whole mess is figured out. I mean, come on, he shoved me down and made me hit my head.

How was I supposed to show Fang I'm the real Max? Wait… I've got an idea.

I reached out and grabbed a handful of Fang's shirt, pulling him close to me and guiding him lips to mine until they met in a gentle kiss. At first my lips were moving alone, but slowly Fang began kissing me back which made me smile as the kiss continued. Unfortunately Max II grabbed my hair, pulling me away from the kiss. I got quick payback though when I turned and planted a smack right on her left cheek making her stumble backward until she hit the ground with her backside. I followed that up by kicking her in the face then her side repeatedly until she began coughing. Eventually she swept my legs out from under me and scurried away, pushing off the ground to the sky.

When I turned around Fang was looking at me with widened eyes.

"You okay?" I asked looking him up and down.

"I'm so sorry." He said walking over to me and lightly touching the area around the wound on my head. "I shouldn't have shoved you until I knew which one was you."

"It's okay." I said giving him a small reassuring smile.

"No it's not." He said shaking his head and pulling me to him.

"You're right… I guess I'll have to go hook up with Ari now." I said trying to sound serious, but ended up letting out a laugh.

"You're not funny." Fang said not smiling.

"Sorry." I said before pressing my lips to his again this time more passionate and needed.

When we parted he brushed a strand of hair behind my ear, keeping his eyes to the cut on my forehead. Then he said, "So am I."

Okay, so that settles it I wouldn't hit him after all. Instead I wrapped my arms around him enjoying the safe feeling I had being there.

"So what'd you do to Jeb?" He asked me after moments of silence.

"Knocked him out… twice." I said smiling into his shirt.

He laughed a little… FANG laughed. It's a miracle.

I looked up at him, resting my chin on his chest. "It's good to be back." I said enjoying the smile that was played on his lips.

"It's good to have you back." He said placing a kiss to my forehead that seemed to linger there.

"Max?" Angel said stepping out the front door.

I turned my head from Fang's hard chest to look at my baby.

"It's me sweetie… it's me."

AN: Hope you liked it!

11. Chapter 11

Relapse- Chapter 11

I was sitting on the edge of the tub holding my hair away from my cut so Dr. Martinez could clean my cut without interference. The peroxide had stung, but I really think I'm starting to get used to the sting. After blowing on the cut producing a cool breeze that felt extremely comforting to my burning wound, she gently placed one of those large rectangular bandages over it.

"There we go." She said leaning back. "Better?"

"Much." I said with a hint of a smile.

"Some how I don't believe you." She said giving me a knowing look. "But I won't pry."

"Thank you." I said looking down at my hands as they fidgeted in my lap.

"You're very welcome." She said standing and taking the first aid kit with her as she walked out of the room. "How'd this happen."

"It doesn't matter." I said as she stopped, thought for a moment the continued to her selected destination. I'm glad she didn't question further.

I sat there silently for an unknown amount of time just staring at my hands in silence. But eventually Fang emerged in the doorway looking at me intently. I couldn't help but squirm under his stare and the silence began to bug me.

"What?" I asked with an uneasy smile, not knowing whether I had reason to smile or not.

"I was just pondering why you haven't punched me or something for pushing you." He said faking a laugh. I could tell he was mad at himself for hurting me.

"It's no big deal." I said shrugging the issue off. "I'm used to getting hurt."

I looked up at him with a smile only to see he wasn't returning it.

"I never thought I could hurt you Max." He said sitting next to me slowly. "I've always tried to look out for you, be the one to watch your back…"

"And you have." I said looking over at him. "Time and time again you save me from getting myself killed. You're my hero."

I laughed and could see him smirk a bit.

"I'm sorry." He said looking into my eyes. "It won't happen again."

"I know." I said shaking it off. "You don't have to tell me."

I kissed his cheek and grabbed his hand saying, "Now, let's get back to the gang."

He stopped me from tugging his arm and looked up at me.

"What?" I asked feeling myself blush from the way he was looking at me.

"So I'm your hero huh?" He asked with a cocky tone to his voice.

I slapped his arm as he laughed at me.

"You said it first." He said holding his hands up in defense.

"Momentary lapse of judgment." I said rolling my eyes.

He smirked as he stood to look down at me. I turned my gaze up to his eyes and tugged on his hand, pulling him down the hall toward everyone else.

I smiled as my eyes caught sight of my flock in the kitchen talking to Ella and Dr. Martinez while eating cookies. I made my way over to the counter and snagged two warm gooey cookies from the cooling rack.

Returning to my place next to Fang I handed over one of the cookies while I savored the amazing flavor and texture of mine. Fang wasn't one to favor one food over another, at least he didn't show any signs of this. I think he's just glad to get food, I'm the same way except for my one weakness that I happen to be eating this moment.

"I missed these." I admitted with a smile directed toward Dr. Martinez.

"What are you talking about?" She asked with a laugh. "You just had ten of them yesterday."

I stopped chewing and looked at the ground. I hated this more than anything. Max II had gotten close to Dr. Martinez, the flock, Fang… She could have replaced me for good if I hadn't come back. Heck, she still almost replaced me when I was back.

I looked up for a moment to see the flock's heads bowed in shame and Fang wasn't making eye contact with me. I couldn't stand the tension, I had to get out. And I did… I ran outside, opened my wings, and flew somewhere I could be alone.

AN: Hope you liked it! Keep the reviews coming, they're fantastic!

12. Chapter 12

Relapse- Chapter 12

I had been sitting in an abandoned park on a beat up swing. My hands were clasped around the metal chains as my feet kicked up small clouds of dust that disappeared just as quickly as they were created. I watched my sneakers move lazily across the dirt creating small lines and swirls, proof that I was there.

I looked up at the other parts of the playground. There was a rusted merry- go- round and a jungle gym sitting lonely next to a faded green plastic slide. The clouds were a silver looking gray, which hinted there would be rainfall later. I should probably get back soon.

I stood, releasing the swing from my grip, making it move ever so slightly in a front to back motion. Then I ran a bit and pushed off into the air and began flight back to my flock. I had been gone for a few hours, so they were probably worried about me.

By the time I got back it was dark and a light pour of rain began its decent to the ground. The Martinez's household was dark except for a lamp in what looked to be the living room. Someone was still up, that didn't surprise me.

I flew to the ground, landing on a very muddy patch of earth. Just my luck. My shoes were covered, slowly sinking in like quick sand. On the inside I could feel the rain ooze in and soak my socks slowly making my face contort to disgust. I hated that feeling.

I went to the sliding glass door and looked inside at the living room. Fang was sitting on the coach, forearms on his thighs, as he stared at the wall.

I checked the handle of the door to find it was locked, the action and sound went completely unnoticed by Fang. He must be pretty deep in thought.

I tapped lightly with my knuckles, but he still couldn't hear me.

"Fang." I called out, my mouth almost touching the glass.

This he did notice, turning his head to look over at me then pushing himself from the couch quickly to come toward me. He unlocked it and opened it for me as I slid my sneakers off and went inside.

"Where have you been?" He asked in a low voice.

"I missed you too." I said sarcastically, sliding my jacket off and hanging it on the coat rack.

"Answer me, Max." He said crossing his arms.

"Out." I said simply.

He gave me a look letting me know he wasn't amused.

"Why does it matter where I've been?" I questioned tilting my head to the side.

"I'd like to know what kept you away for ten hours and thirty six minutes." He said gesturing toward the clock. "What was so important that you couldn't come back sooner so the kids could go to bed knowing your safe and ok?"

"I was thinking." I said vaguely. "I didn't realize I was gone so long."

"That still doesn't answer my question." He stated narrowing his eyes on me.

"Stop treating me like I've done something wrong." I muttered as I furrowed my brow.

"I just want an answer to my question." He said stubbornly.

I'll admit it, I was slowly becoming angrier with him and I think he was feeling the same way toward me. I know I should just tell him where I had been, but if I did I'd feel like I was giving in. He was treating me like a little kid and I wasn't about to admit to him that I had only gone to a park, and let him think he was right for interrogating me. I'm allowed to keep things to myself. I'm the leader of the flock, not him. I'm the one that wins the battles and calls the shots. He's always respected that before, but right now he was on some kind of power trip. At least that's what I'm going to identify this questioning as.

"You're not going to get one." I said shaking my head. "I'm going into my room to get some sleep. I suggest you do the same."

I made my way toward the hall, but as I passed him he clasped my arm in a loose grip. I stopped and looked up at him.

"Why are you acting like this?" He asked staring me down.

"I don't like being treated like a kid." I stated and pulled my arm away.

I made my way down the hall and into my room, shutting the door silently behind me. I wanted so badly to slam it, but I didn't want to wake everyone.

Way to stand your ground, Maximum.

"Go away." I thought bitterly.

Surprisingly that was the last I heard of the voice tonight.

I changed into dry clothes and laid in bed, pulling the covers over my cold body. Hopefully tomorrow would be a better day.

AN: Hope you liked it!

13. Chapter 13

Relapse- Chapter 13

"Will we ever see you again?" Ella asked me with sad eyes.

I had just told her and Dr. Martinez my plans of leaving today.

"I don't know." I said honestly. "I hope so."

"Me too." She said getting teary.

I glanced at the clock, 7:00 a.m.

"I have to wake the flock." I said standing and giving them both hugs.

I knocked on every door and waited in the middle of the hall until everyone came out. Fang was first, completely ignoring my presence as he came out. Angel and Nudge were next then Gazzy and Iggy.

"Eat breakfast, then we're leaving." I announced as they marched to the kitchen.

"Where are we going?" Nudge asked curiously.

"We're gonna find your parents." I said with a nod.

Nudge ran over and threw her arms around me. "Thank you, Max!"

"You're welcome." I said quietly.

I didn't want to find their parents, but I knew they wanted to. I had been avoiding this for too long. It wasn't fair to keep them from their actual parents just because I wanted to hold onto them… because as far as I know Jeb is my father and Ari my brother.

I walked into the kitchen close behind Nudge and stood with my back against the wall. I had already eaten with Ella and Dr. Martinez, so I just took in what might be one of the last moments with my flock.

Iggy had already found his parents and things hadn't worked out, so it could be just me and him in the end of all this. At least I wouldn't be alone.

What was really killing me is that I could lose Fang while we weren't on the best of terms. I'm so mad at him, but I love him too. I'm just really confused right now, because I feel so angry that he treated me that way, even if it was just because he was worried. But I'm going to have to let go of that anger sometime, especially if I have to let go of Fang possibly forever. I hated this.

"Max." Nudge called breaking me from my thoughts.

"Hm?" I questioned looking over at her.

"We're done." She said looking at me skeptically.

"Alright, get your stuff." I said grabbing my backpack from the kitchen floor. "And someone wake up Total."

"I will." Angel said practically skipping past me. She was excited about this whole parent thing. I just hope her parents aren't a complete disappointment like Ig's.

Moments later they were all walking out to the backyard with me close behind. I took Total from Angel and instructed her to take flight with her brother right behind. Nudge and Iggy were next. Then Fang, before I could even tell him and me with Total in my backpack.

Maximum, where are you going?

'To keep a promise to my flock.'

Their parents won't be what they're hoping for.

'I don't care. They have to see for themselves, so we can get past this roadblock.'

And then you'll save the world.

'Yeah, about that… when am I going to know how to do this?'

Whenever you're ready.

'How do I know when I'm ready?'

When you decide to trust Jeb.

'Then I'll never be ready.'

It's okay, Maximum. You don't have to trust him, but it would sure make things a lot easier.

"Easier how?" I thought aloud.

Fang's gaze turned toward me, but I ignored it.

You'll see soon enough.

"God, you're so annoying." I muttered bitterly.

"She's talking to her voice again." Total said dryly.

Fang gave a nod of understanding.

I'm sorry you don't understand yet, but you will.

'Just tell me what I have to do.'

If I'm going to tell you… you should land.

'No, we've got too far to go.'

As you wish, Maximum. Here it goes…

That's when the brain blast hit.

AN: Hope you like it. And yes, the voice is back even though the chip is gone. There is a very simple expanation for that which will be explained later on in the story. And I realize I should of made Max and Fang more surprised that it came back, but I decided to push that to the background for this reason: Max has so much going on and she is so used to having the voice that it didn't surprise her too much it came back. She never even knew for sure that the voice came from the chip, it was just a guess. So, if that isn't a good enough explanation, sorry. It just seemed unimportant to make her throw a tantrum that it's back. I've got other drama to explore. REVIEWS APPRECIATED!

14. Chapter 14

Relapse- Chapter 14

The wind rushed around me feeling like a godsend. I was pleading with whatever higher power to let me collide with the ground to stop the pain. I couldn't take it much more.

Images were emerging from total darkness flickering quickly, some showed multiple times and others played out like a movie. They seemed to be slowing down and eventually I could make out a couple ten second clips.

One was of me and Fang at the school talking with Jeb, seeming to be confronting him.

Another of Iggy with a child in his arms, pressing it against him as Fang fought Ari.

The last of me punching Jeb.

Then all was black again.

I could hear Total shout for Fang, the poor dog was falling with me.

Then I was in strong arms, gaining altitude as the pain in my head weakened and I worked up the courage to open my eyes.

The first time I opened them I noticed a very blurry image of Fang looking forward as he flew. I closed my eyes for a few seconds then opened them once again to see a clearer sight of Fang, this time he was looking down at me.

"Land." I rasped leaning my head against his shoulder.

I could see a slight nod of acknowledgement, that's the best I'd get from him. Then he started to descend. The flock followed closely, but still a little far back.

Fang's feet touched the ground and I immediately felt Total squirm from my backpack and hop to the safe surface of the earth. That near death experience was the second he suffered, but he wasn't quite used to it yet. But I was, especially when I'm hoping to die.

Fang laid me on the ground gently and I watched him rise back to a standing position to look down at me.

"You ok?" He asked softly with a hint of anger still in his voice.

"Yeah." I said touching my head lightly. "It's gone now."

"Why now?" Fang asked looking over me. "Why did these come back?"

"To show me my destiny." I said more to myself than him.

"What?" He asked confused.

"I saw how I'm supposed to save the world." I said furrowing my brow as the images replayed in my mind over and over again, never ending.

"How?" He asked bending down to be even with me.

"I saw flashes of ten second images." I said monotone. "But I don't know what they mean."

"What did you see?" He asked staring at me.

I fidgeted under his hard gaze.

"Me and you confronting Jeb. Iggy clutching a kid to his chest while you fought with Ari. And then me punching Jeb." I said snapping away from my thoughts.

"A kid?" Fang questioned.

I nodded.

"Why would Iggy be holding a kid?" He asked. That was the same question I was asking myself. This wasn't adding up.

"Maybe we're supposed to save it from the school." I said looking into his eyes.

"What child could be that important?" He wondered out loud. "Besides, I thought this was about a bomb and Itex."

"I don't know." I admitted. "I'm so confused."

"Could you ask your voice?" He asked studying me.

"I'll try." I said with a nod.

'Voice, who's the kid?'

That cannot be revealed to you yet, Maximum.

"It said it can't tell me yet." I said rolling my eyes.

"Figures." Fang muttered. "What can you tell me about the child?"

"A girl, probably about one, maybe two." Then a realization hit me. "And she had wings."

Fang's head snapped in my direction. "She's like us?"

I nodded.

"So what are we doing?" Fang asked whipping his bangs away from his eyes.

"We're finding your families, then we're finding the little girl." I said surely.

"Ok." He said standing. He looked like he was going to walk away, but turned back to me. "I'm sorry about yesterday."

I was silent for a second then responded, "Me too."

"So, we're ok?" He asked looking at me.

"Yeah." I said with a small smile and a nod.

He gave me a hint of a smile, then turned toward the flock.

I stood and followed behind him.

The only thing on my mind was the little girl. I know I should be focusing on the flock's parents, but there was something about the baby that drew me to her. Maybe it's because she's part of my destiny… I obviously had to save her. But how and when was still a mystery, along with why she was so important.

AN: Hope you liked it! Thanks for all the great reviews! You're all awesome!

15. Chapter 15

Relapse- Chapter 15


'What now?' I questioned silently.

It was my watch tonight. We had setup camp where we landed. I was sitting by the fire while the flock slept behind me. Fang had already taken watch, right after Iggy, and I had watch until the sun came up.

There is more I need to show you.

'Like what?'

More about the child in the visions I sent you.

'Why didn't you just show me all of it before?' I groaned inwardly.

It would have put you at risk. I can't send you too much information at one time. It would overload your brain and possibly endanger your health.

'Well, then thanks for caring.' I thought sarcastically.

Are you ready too see the rest?

"Hold on." I said aloud in a quiet voice.

I stood up and walked to where Fang slept, his back was to me. I laid my hand gently on his back, running my fingers over a wrinkle in his black shirt.

His eyes flicked open and turned in my direction. He looked a bit worried.

"Max, are you ok?" Fang questioned propping himself on his elbows.

"Yeah, I just need you to look over the flock for a few minutes." I said connecting with his dark eyes.

"Why?" He asked sitting up and blinking away the last indication of tiredness on his face.

"The voice has more to show me." I explained quickly. "And I can't keep an eye on the flock while the brain explosion hits."

"Alright." He said standing and walking with me over to the fire.

"I'm ready." I said to the voice once I had sat down.

Here it goes.

I closed my eyes and prepared myself for the pain. And then it came in one strong rush that seemed never ending. The visions were like pictures on a slideshow that was going too fast that every caption was blurred. They kept coming and going until finally the familiar girl came into my sight.

I saw myself releasing the tiny girl from a small cage.

Then me carrying the girl from the School.

And the last of the other Max standing in front of the exit from the School. Keeping me from rescuing the tiny child in my arms, that had wings just like mine.

And now I could see the similarity… the same eyes and nose. Her wing color and pattern of feathers was the same scheme. She looked a lot like me, but how could that be?

I snapped away form the dream like state I had been in, Fang looking down at me with an unreadable expression across his hard, chiseled features.

"Max?" He questioned my alertness.

"Yeah… I'm back." I said still in thought.

My mind was trying to process exactly what I had just seen. What I had just discovered could be a mere coincidence or it could be hard fact. That girl could be related to me.

Could I really have a sister?

"Max, you ok?" Fang asked reaching his hand out to touch my cheek.

I grabbed it as it gently touched my skin and nuzzled into the safety of the presence.

"Yeah… I just… I'm…" I stuttered trying to find words.

I took a deep breath and looked into his deep brown eyes.

"I think she's related to me… I could be imagining it, but… she looks like me."

Fang's eyes widened a little bit, which means he was shocked.

"That would explain why you're the one that has to save the world." He said with a distant look.

"Lucky me." I said rolling my eyes.

"Did you ask your voice?" He asked coming back to reality.

I shook my head then did just that.

'Is this girl related to me?'

Yes, Maximum.

A cold hand grabbed my heart and squeezed tightly. I had someone that was connected to me by blood that I didn't know about. And worst of all she was at the school.

"We have to go save her." I said almost in a begging tone to Fang.

Well, that sounded pathetic.

"Max, what's going on?" He questioned eyeing me.

"She's related to me." I said feeling panicked.

"Like a sister?" He asked sounding stunned.

I nodded. "I guess, that's the only possible way."

"Ok, I'll wake the flock then we'll go." He said trying to calm me.

"What about their parents?" I said quickly. "I promised we could find their families."

"We're going to." He said with a nod. "But we're finding yours first."

I took a deep breath then forced a smile as he turned to wake the flock.

AN: Hope you liked it!

16. Chapter 16

Relapse- Chapter 16

"Everyone up." Fang said gently kicking everyone awake.

I was standing a few feet away taking in the humorous scene, trying to hide my laughter. It was hard though, because the whole flock had sleepy faces, confused faces when they first woke up. Iggy snaps up into a sitting position faster than anyone I've seen. Nudge hides her head like she's afraid someone is going to pour water on her. Gazzy flips onto his stomach and protects his head. And Angel… Angel just sits up slowly and blinks a few times.

When Fang wakes up, his eyes flash open quick and immediately take a sweep of our surroundings for danger, such as erasers.

I don't know what I do, hopefully nothing too embarrassing.

"The sun isn't even up yet." Nudge whined.

"No, but it's halfway there." Fang reasoned. "We're getting an early start."

"Why?" Iggy asked noticing the change in our pattern to be a fault of something serious. "What happened… where's Max?"

"I'm over here, Ig." I said walking to them. "We're taking a bit of a detour today."

"Meaning?" Nudge questioned finally uncovering her head.

"Everyone get up and I'll explain while we fly there." I said grabbing my backpack and throwing it over my shoulders.

They all got up and grabbed their stuff. Fang put out the fire then stuffed Total in his backpack. One by one the flock took flight, me being last.

"So, what's going on, Max?" Iggy asked in a shout so all the flock could here.

"My voice sent me some visions of a little girl, she's at the School." I started to explain.

"Who is she?" Angel pried innocently.

"I'm not sure, but I think she's my sister." I said hearing a few surprised gasps emerge from my flock. "All my voice said is that she's related to me."

"How do you it's telling the truth?" Gazzy piped up.

"Because the girl looks like me." I began. "She has the same eyes and nose… and the same wing color and pattern."

"She's like us?" Nudge asked amazed.

"Yes." I said nodding my head.

"Woah." Iggy said breaking a bit of silence.

I smiled and I turned to see Fang trying to suppress one himself.

"But there's a little more you all need to know…" I said finally.

"What?" Angel asked looking over at me.

"By saving this girl… I save the world." I said confidently.

"Weird." Gazzy said in conclusion.

I agreed with him. Why was this girl so important?

We arrived at the School a few hours later. As we descended and my eyes rested on the building we all hated, I had to take a deep breath, and silently convince myself that this was the right thing to do. I knew it was, but I hated that I was putting the flock in danger.

"Ready?" Fang asked coming to stand beside me.

I looked at him and nodded.

We all walked to the building, trying to go unnoticed. We chose to go through a vent on the side of the building which eventually took us to a storage closet.

When we were all through I opened the door open a crack and looked outside. There was a long white hallway with a lot of rooms on both sides. At the end of the hall on the left was an exit, but on the right was a large room.

There was someone in the room across from the closet we were in, sitting at a computer. "Come on, be careful to not be seen." I instructed walking out of the closet.

I looked in every room as we passed them and all had at least one person in them. Just before I could look into the large room someone came out.


"Max." He said looking at me.

"Where is she?" I asked walking toward him.

"Well, I assume you're talking about Sky." He said seeing all of my flock behind me. "Come with me and I'll tell you."

"Why would I do that?" I asked furrowing my brow.

"Because believe it or not… we're on the same team." Jeb said with a nod.

"Ok." I said still suspicious. "Lead the way."

He ended up taking us into a the larger room. It was deserted. Iggy and Nudge sat on the white couch while Angel and the Gasman sat in the two white chairs.

"Fang, I'd like to speak to Max alone." Jeb announced seeing Fang still standing next to me. I gave him the nod of 'ok' and he went to sit on the couch with Ig and Nudge.

"So who is she?" I asked getting his attention.

"Your daughter." He said straight to the point.

"What?" I questioned incredulously.

"Your daughter." He confirmed.

"That's not possible." I said shaking my head.

"Actually, it clearly is." He said smugly.

"But how?" I asked blinking in confusion.

"When you were here we did a bit of an operation. We took one of your eggs and fertilized it with sperm." He explained.

"That's sick." I said becoming infuriated. "You used me as a guinea pig… but that's all I'm good for to you, isn't it?"

"We needed a new generation of bird kids." He said. "You didn't think we were going to let it all end with you, did you?"

"I was hoping." I muttered.

"Maximum, we couldn't be one hundred percent sure that you would or could reproduce… so we took matters into our own hands." He explained. "Unfortunately, some of my superiors don't want anymore of the human and bird mix and they want to terminate Sky. That's where you come in… to save the world."

"Why are they so against letting her live?" I asked looking into his eyes.

"They're afraid the government is coming close to finding out about all of this. We stopped producing entirely until we're sure we won't be discovered. Sky is the only thing produced in a year besides erasers."

"Couldn't you just have hidden her somewhere?" I asked not understanding.

"If we had more time then yes, but the government is coming to evaluate our work and we have an entire clean up to perform… files, hiding erasers, documenting computer data so we can delete it from our computers." He said seeming overwhelmed.

"Couldn't you have hidden her with the erasers?" I pondered.

"The erasers are hard enough to control as it is, but putting bait in front of them… she would have been harmed." He explained shaking his head. "Do you see now, Maximum?"

I nodded.

"So where is she?" I asked.

"In there." He said pointing at a small room connected to the one we were in. "There's one thing you need to know."

"What?" I asked.

"She's been trained to recognize you as her mother." Jeb began. "Max II has been playing the role until you came… she's become quite attached."

"You let that faker play mommy to her?" I asked feeling angry.

He gave a nod.

Then I punched him. That felt good.

"Max?" Fang asked standing up. Him and the rest of the flock were looking at me.

"I'll explain later. Right now we find Sky." I said running to the small room. "Iggy pick the lock."

He worked with it for a few minutes until finally it opened. I walked inside to see Sky in a small cage. I opened it up and pulled her out, hugging her to me.

She looked exactly how I'd seen her in my visions.

The flock all looked at me and Sky, seeing the resemblance.

"Come on." I said hurrying from the rooms to the hall.

And there she was, just like the vision revealed. Max II was blocking the exit.

"Iggy, here." I said handing Sky off to him.

Ari then emerged from the large room we had just come from… had he been there the whole time?

Fang launched himself at Ari while I went after my double.

"Stop this!" Jeb yelled coming from the room. "Ari, Max II if you do not stop I will have you terminated immediately."

The two of them seemed to falter with the decision, but ultimately left us alone. Weird.

I grabbed Sky from Iggy and headed out the doors with the flock behind me.

"U and A." I ordered.

Fang looked over at me before taking off. "So?"

"She's my daughter." I said.

That's when it finally began to be real. Maximum Ride had a kid at age 15.

AN: Hope you liked it! Reviews make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. jk... but it does make me happy!

17. Chapter 17

Relapse- Chapter 17

We'd been flying for a few hours. Sky was in my arms sleeping. I'd steal a few glances of her then return my gaze to the open air ahead of me. My feelings toward her were mixed, because part of me wanted to be a good mother to her and the other part resented her. I know I shouldn't, but I couldn't help the way I felt. I was slowly starting to hate myself for feeling like this.

Fang and I hadn't talked since I told him Sky was my daughter. It's not that we were avoiding each other it was just that there hasn't been time to discuss the details. I just hope he'll be understanding about this situation. I wouldn't ask him to be happy that Sky is around, because I wasn't. All I want from Fang is the least amount of change between us as possible.

I flew above Fang, so our wings flapped in complete symmetry. He looked up at me and then at Sky in my arms. The moment his eyes reconnected with mine, I mouthed the word 'land' to him, trying not to wake Sky.

He nodded then flew back to the rest of the flock to relay the message. I began my descent to the cave not far below. It was the one we'd stayed in before after the whole Angel getting kidnapped situation. The movement that brought us into this mess.

The flock was down in the cave within a few minutes of my landing. I dreaded this… I knew I'd be explaining who Sky was and how it's possible she exists.

Fang walked over to me with an unreadable expression, of course.

"Can you take her for a minute?" I asked shifting the one year old in my arms.

His eyes flickered an emotion that slowly died out: fear. Fang was not the kind of guy that is good with kids so young. I think they scare him with a different kind of fear. They're vulnerable and rely on you.

"Just for a minute." I reassured.

"I'll take her, Max." Nudge said walking over.

I gave her a thankful smile. "Thanks Nudge."

"No problem." She whispered as I handed over Sky.

I motioned for Fang to follow me to the front of the cave, which he did, staying a few steps behind until coming even with me at the opening.

"So you're a mom." He said breaking the silence. I was grateful, because I had no idea how to approach the subject.

"Yeah." I said looking out into the darkness.

My arms were wrapped around my middle, it was already a little cold and this situation didn't warm me up a bit. Goose bumps were slowly forming under the fabric of my long sleeve grey shirt as well as under my jeans.

"How'd this happen?" Fang asked looking over at me, seeming confused.

"Jeb said they took an egg from me the first time we were at the school and they fertilized it with an autonomous sperm." I explained taking a seat so my feet dangled off the edge. "They were desperate to keep the bird kid species going."

"Do you know who the autonomous donor was?" He asked furrowing his brow.

Fang was a lot calmer about this situation than I was, but I knew he probably felt the same way I did on the inside, well, not exactly the same.

"No… that's the worst part of it all." I said bitterly.

"How so?" He questioned sitting finally.

I looked over at him like he'd just asked the stupidest question ever… because e basically did. Didn't he know how important that piece of information was?

"Because, Fang… Sky's father could be an eraser… a whitecoat… anyone!" I practically shouted at him. My rage at the whitecoats was coming out at him… time to bite my tongue. I didn't want to yell at Fang.

"She doesn't look like an eraser." He reasoned. "And if her father is a whitecoat… who cares? You'll be raising her, not him. She'll turn out to be just as good as you on the inside, in that warm heart."

"It doesn't matter who her father is, Max. You're her mother and you'll raise her to be just as strong, passionate, and beautiful as you." He said finally looking over at me.

Tears began to slide down my cheeks.

"Hey, what's wrong?" Fang asked as I tried to shield my face with my hands.

"I'm not what you just described… I couldn't possibly be." I said hearing my own strained voice as I talked. "While we were in flight I was debating whether I even cared about Sky or not. I began to resent her the more I let my mind think about it."

"You didn't resent Sky, you resented the situation." He said softly against my ear, before bringing my head to his chest. "We'll get through this."

"I just want to get out of this." My voice muffled by his shirt.

"As I seem to recall, you said you wanted to be a mother…" He said and I could practically hear him smirking.

"Of the flock, because I raised them… and Anne was taking over." I said defensively.

"Well, now you can raise Sky to be part of the flock." He said nodding. "We'll help."

"Yeah right, you wouldn't even hold her for a minute." I teased.

"I'm just afraid I'm gonna break her… she's so small and fragile." He explained in defense.

"You won't break her. And plus, I need you to help me." I said pulling away.

"Why?" He questioned raising an eyebrow.

"Well, since we're in a relationship… that makes you honorary step dad or… something." I said teasing again.

"Yeah right." He muttered with a smirk while he shook his head.

"It's that or your Uncle Fnick." I said laughing.

He gave me one last glance and walked back into the cave while I tried to muffle the laughter escaping my mouth.

AN: Hope you liked it! And those of you that don't like the whole Max has a daughter thing... sorry, but that's how I wanted it. Don't worry, things will pick up to be actiony again.

18. Chapter 18

Relapse- Chapter 18

"Max." Someone said laying their hand on my arm… Iggy. "Your watch."

"Alright, get some sleep." I said tapping fists with him.

I looked beside me at Skye sleeping peacefully on Fang's jacket. Where had she gotten that? He must have laid it on her during his watch.

I noticed Skye start to twist around in her sleep and decided to start applying my mommy duties. I sat up and scooted over to her, picking her up and placing her in my lap. I supported her head so she still was lying down, hopefully I didn't wake her.

I must not have, because she slept for a good three more hours before she opened her glimmering eyes. As I stared into them, I noticed something change. I wasn't as scared of her or even as resentful toward her. My job was to protect her and I would do just that.

"Hi sweetie." I whispered as she blinked up at me. "I'm gonna keep you safe now."

"Getting attached are we?" Fang questioned with a smirk.

"How could I not?" I asked keeping my eyes locked on hers. "Look at those eyes… have you ever seen anything like 'em?"

"Actually I have." Fang said with a laugh. "Yours."

My snapped up to look up at him. His smile was infectious.

"So what's the plan today?" He questioned going back to serious Fang.

"Well… don't I need to get diapers and formula… stuff like that…?" I questioned thinking.

Fang nodded slightly keeping his eyes on me.

"So we'll have to go shopping." I said rolling my eyes.

Yes, I hate shopping.

"Okay." He said with a nod. "Why don't I go wake Ig and we can shop while the others are asleep."

"You mean you're volunteering to come?" I asked, my mouth agape.

"Well, someone has to make sure you don't dress Skye up in some cutesy pink frilly dress or something." He said acting freaked out at the thought.

"Ha ha." I said not amused.

He smirked.

"I'll get Skye ready, you wake Iggy." I said walking past him, trying to hide my smile.

I heard Iggy from being violently shook awake by Fang while I positioned my daughter on my hip.

"We're going shopping." I said with a smile.

Of course she had no idea what I was talking about, since she's only a year old. But people talk to babies all the time, why shouldn't I?

I walked to the front of the cave and waited for Fang. He emerged moments later with a hint of a smile on his lips.

"Ready?" I questioned as he stopped beside me.

He gave me a nod then took off.

We made it to a Wal-Mart in less than twenty minutes, considering there is a Wal-Mart absolutely everywhere.

We walked in the store and got one of those metal carts, since we'll probably be buying too much to carry. I put Skye in the child seat and began pushing the cart down the aisle with Fang walking beside me.

People were staring at Fang and I as we passed them. It was very uncomfortable. Fang and I were anything but clean and we look like we're about seventeen instead of fifteen. So we basically looked like a teen couple with a baby. Really awkward.

We were in the diaper aisle looking over the different brands now.

"Huggies or Luvs?" Fang asked looking over his shoulder.

"Um… I don't know." I said biting my lip.

"Then we'll get them both." Fang said grabbing both brands and tossing them into the cart. I smiled and let out a small laugh.

"What's next?" He asked turning to me.

"Formula." I said pushing the cart along.

"Here we go." Fang said grabbing three containers of the baby fluid. "How many bottles you want?"

"Three…" I said unsure.

"Alright, what kind do you want… hippos, monkeys, dinosaurs, lions…?" He questioned listing off the options. There were way too many to choose from.

"Hm…" I said walking over to wall of bottles. "Monkeys, lions, and doves." I picked them out and placed them in the cart as I decided.

"Next destination?" Fang questioned.

"Baby clothes." I said pushing the cart along again.

"As long as you don't take an hour to decide." He said with a smirk.

I rolled my eyes.

It turns out Wal-Mart has a pretty good selection of baby clothes. When we started looking I spotted outfits for Skye right off. I would buy three, four at the most. I did have a budget… I think.

"What do you think of this one?" I asked Fang, holding up a pink top and brown bottoms.

"Pink?" Fang asked looking at me like I was crazy.

"In that case I'll get it just to bug you." I said putting it into the cart.

Skye began to get fussy, she was probably hungry.

"See, she doesn't like it either." Fang said shaking his head.

I shot him a look that said 'shut up' as I picked up Skye from the cart and tried to calm her. Turns out she's a really easy going baby, because she was calm within five minutes. What a great daughter I had. Imagine that.

An elderly woman came over to us with a warm smile on her face, definitely not an eraser.

"I just had to come over and tell you what a cute family you make." The woman said looking at Skye in my arms. "It's amazing that a teen couple such as yourselves are taking care of such a beautiful and wonderful baby. You're doing a fantastic job."

"Thank you, but…" I began, Fang cut me off.

"Our parents are proud too." He said with a fake smile.

"I'm sure they are." She said before walking off.

We picked up a few more things before going to the check out counter. I paid with the credit card and then we headed back to the flock.

AN: Hope you liked it! I love reviews. And everyone needs to go to the Maximum Ride site and click for a 4th Maximum Ride book. If we reach one million, then JP says he'll make a fouth book. SO DO IT!

19. Chapter 19

Relapse- Chapter 19

"Do you see that?" I asked Fang as I pressed Sky closer to me.

We were back with the flock now, preparing to abandon another temporary living arrangement, the normal routine.

"Erasers." Fang said lowly as he spotted the dark mass in the air.

They were far enough away to escape if we leave now, so that's what we're going to do.

"Everyone, take off now!" I shouted looking back at me flock.

They scurried over to the ledge I stood on and flew up one by one. Fang gave me one last look then followed behind them.

"Here we go again." I said to myself as I jumped off the cave and opened my wings.

Sky let out a whimper as I sped up to catch my flock. "It's ok." I said quieting her as best I could in mid air while I'm running for my life… and my daughter's.

"Max!" I heard Ari yell from behind me, still far off.

"Where are we headed?" Fang asked from beside me.

"I don't know." I said furrowing my brow. "Take Sky."

"What, why?" He asked as I pushed her into his arms.

"Ari and I are going to have a little chat." I said dropping back a little.

He slowed down with me.

"No, you're coming with us." Fang demanded.

"Look, he wants to talk to me and I need to talk to him."


I looked away then said, "I need to know who her father is."

"And you think he's gonna tell you?" He questioned.

"I know he will."


"I've got a voice in my head that knows all, remember?" I asked tapping my temple.

"Yeah, and I still want to know how it came back." He said bitterly.

"Me too, but I've got bigger issues to work out." I said shooing him away. "I'll be careful, I promise."

"You better be." He said before taking off.

I turned to see Ari approaching me with about ten erasers behind.

"Hey dog breath." I greeted unenthusiastically.

"Did you miss me?" He growled.

"Terribly." I muttered sarcastically.

"Did you finally decide to change sides?" Ari asked cocking his head to the side.

"No, I've finally decided to get some answers." I answered.

"I'd be happy to answer your questions… as long as you come with me." He pressed.

"Now we both know that's out of the question." I said shaking my head.

"Then give us Sky." He growled.

"That also isn't an option." I said lowly. "But there is a choice you could make that you might consider."

"What's that?" He asked sounding amused.

"I'll forgive you of everything you've done to me and the flock if you tell me who Sky's father is." I explained trying to read his reaction.

"No deal." He said lunging toward me.

I dodged him then took off in my full speed to catch up with the flock. I lost him within seconds and caught up with the flock minutes later.

"Anything?" Fang asked as I slowed next to him.

"Nope." I answered thinking.

"So what's your plan?"

"Talk to Jeb." I said simply.

"You want to go back to The School?" He asked furrowing his brow.

"No…" I said mysteriously. "Jeb is gonna come to us."

Fang looked at me like I grew another head.

AN: Hope you liked it! I know it's short, but it had to end there for cliff hanger purposes. Don't forget to click for an MR 4. And if you can spare a review, you'll make my day. And you might get another chapter today also... and the next chap is going to answer a lot of questions you guys have been asking.

20. Chapter 20

Relapse- Chapter 20

"What are you talking about?" Fang asked landing next to me by a abandoned house… hopefully.

"You'll see." I said giving him an 'I'll explain later' look.

He rolled his eyes and handed Sky over to me. "I'll check out the house."

"Ok." I said watching him walk over to the dark home.

He checked the door, but it was locked. He stole a glance back at me before walking to the window and busting it out with his elbow. Don't worry, he hand his windbreaker on. He turned the lock and opened the widow rightfully, slowly climbing inside.

I looked on as Fang disappeared inside, holding my breath. Exactly seven minutes later he came out of the front door and I felt myself breathe out.

"All clear." He said motioning us to come inside.

"Go on." I said to the flock as I followed behind them.

"Abandoned." Fang said as I stepped past him to the inside. "Probably has been for about three years."

"What makes you think that?" I questioned turning to him.

"There's a calendar in the kitchen the year says 2003." He explained.

I nodded showing I agreed with his suspicion.

"How many bedrooms?" I asked.


"Great." I muttered hoisting Sky higher up on my hip.

"So when are you summoning Satan himself?"

"After we work up a plan." I answered in a 'duh' tone.

"Well, I'd love to, but you aren't telling me anything." He said raising his dark eyebrows.

"Let's change that then." I said motioning for him to sit on the couch. "Flock come into the living room, please."

I heard their footsteps clomping down the hall as Fang sat on the couch. When they came into view I handed Sky to Fang and pointed to the couch.

Iggy sat next to Fang, Nudge beside him. Angel climbed onto Ig's lap and Gazzy sat in the large chair to my right.

"Alright, let's talk." I announced crossing my arms.

"About what?" Gazzy chirped from beside me.

"About getting answers." I said looking at him. "I've got a plan."

"Wanna share?" Fang asked staring at me.

"I'm going to get Jeb to come here alone?" I answered making it sound simple.

"How do you plan on accomplishing that?" Iggy asked seeing amused.

"Well I'm almost a hundred percent sure Jeb is the voice in my head… so if I tell him to come, he will." I said exhaling.

"How can you be so sure, Max? He wouldn't come just because we say so…"

"I know Nudge, but I'm pretty sure Jeb will come, because even if he has a funny way of showing he cares, I think he still does." I explained lacking confidence in my words. "And I'm also sure that Jeb is my father."

The flock's eyes widened at this statement, well, all except for Fang.

"So what I want all of you to do is wait in one of the bedrooms while I talk to Jeb, if he comes. Gaz and Ig, get your bombs ready. Nudge, keep a look out through the window.

"What do you want me to do?" Angel asked pleadingly.

"Look after Total." I said as a flicker of a smile made its way to my lips.

"And me?" Total asked walking in.

"Try not to talk." Fang said, Total huffed in response.

"Alright, everyone go into one of the bedrooms, I don't care which one." I ordered as they all slowly disappeared, except for Fang and Sky.

"Nudge." I called her back.

"Yeah, Max?" She questioned making her way to me.

"I need you to look after Sky, have Gazzy be the look out. I'm sure Ig can handle the bombs on his own." I said as Fang handed Sky to her.

"And if he can't, what do we do, Max?" She questioned bouncing Sky the slightest bit.

"Then let Total take watch." I said rolling my eyes as Fang gave me a look that said, 'you can't be serious'.

"What if he isn't the voice?" Fang asked as Nudge disappeared.

"I haven't thought that far yet." I admitted sitting on the couch. "Now be quiet so I can talk to the backstabber in peace."

He sat next to me.

'Voice, Jeb?'


'Jeb, you're the voice… aren't you?'

I'm glad you finally figured it out, sweetie.

'Yeah, well… I figured something else out too.'

What's that?

'You're my father.'

There was silence.

'Am I right?'

Yes, and Ari is your brother.

'Does he know?' I asked in suspicion.


'I want you to come meet me.' I said getting to the point.


'Because I want answers.' I snarled… well the best I could by just thinking it.

You want to know the paternity of Sky.

'I would be impressed, except you know my thoughts.'

How do you expect me to find you?

'You're tracking me, it shouldn't be that hard.'

He was silent.

'And Jeb.'

Yes, Maximum?

'Come alone.'

How do I know this isn't a trap?

'Well, you're just going to have to trust the fact that I want answers more than your dead body.'

I'll come, on one condition.

'Name it.'

You let me see my granddaughter, let me hold her.

'You hand plenty of time to see her before, when you created her and then hid her.'

Those are the rules, Maximum.

"Deal." I muttered aloud.

Fang's head snapped over to look at me.

"He's coming." I said meeting his dark gaze.

He nodded.

AN: Hope you liked it! I want to take this time to say a few things:

1. The paternity of the father comes in the next chapter and how the voice came back.
2. This story ends for good on chapter 25.
3. Something is going to happen in the next chapter that is going to make your mouths drop open, so be ready.

And four, the reason you love me so much... the next chapter will be posted TONIGHT!

21. Chapter 21

Relapse- Chapter 21

There was a knock on the door of our temporary living arrangement. I walked over and peered through the peep hole to see Jeb. I took a deep breath then opened the door just enough for him to step in.

"Hello Maximum." He said in a subtle voice.

"Jeb." I said in a strictly business tone.

"Where's the rest of the flock?" He asked looking around, his eyes meeting Fang's.

"Around." I said coldly. "They don't need to hear any of this."

"Then why is Fang here?" He asked even though I knew he had a good idea why.

"He's second in command." I said meeting Fang's eyes. "Do you want him to leave?"

"We both know you wouldn't send him away if I requested it." He said with a knowing grin.

"Agreed, so let's drop that subject and get down to the reason you're here." I said crossing my arms. "Who is it, Jeb?"

He walked over to the chair Gazzer was in just an hour ago and sat.

"You may want to sit down." He said motioning me to the couch.

I glared at him as I sat next to Fang. This was Jeb's tactic of stalling.

"Ok, I'm sitting… spill it." I said looking him dead in his eyes.

"Well, at first we considered many options the father could be… then we narrowed down the perfect sperm donor after taking into account all of the negatives and positives." He explained leaning forward slightly.

"How many choices?" I asked furrowing my brow.

"Well… there was an eraser, a very strong one, mind you, one of the best we've got. Sam…"

"Sam?" I questioned in shock.

"Yes, for awhile he was our top selection." Jeb answered, nodding.

"What changed that?" I asked feeling the curiosity oozing from myself.

"You hate his guts." Jeb said in a slightly 'duh-ish' tone.

"Like that would stop you." I muttered in disbelief.

"You'd be surprised." He said meeting my eyes.

I simply glared.

"We also took into account other experiments, but they were quickly ruled out." Jeb said shaking his head.

I felt disappointed. That meant the father wasn't Fang… or even Iggy.

"I said other experiments, Maximum." He said noting my frown. "Meaning besides human avian crosses."

I felt the flicker of hope come alive in me again.

"Iggy and Fang were both top choices all along. Choosing between them at the end was hard." Jeb explained nodding to himself.

"Wait a minute… are you telling me Sky's father is either Fang or Iggy?" I asked feeling very good at the moment.

"That's precisely what I'm telling you." He said adjusting his glasses.

"Which one of us is it?" Fang cut in.

"Just look at her, you can see the similarity."

I looked at him for the longest time before going and retrieving Sky from Nudge and coming face to face with Fang and Jeb.

"Tell me Maximum… who do you think she looks like?" Jeb asked keeping his eyes locked on me. I fidgeted under his stare. Way to put me on the spot!

I took a good look at my daughter. I noted her light brown hair and brown wings. She got that from me. I looked into her eyes and something was there… the similarity.

"Fang." I breathed out staring down at Sky, wide eyed.

Fang's head snapped up to look at me.

Out of the corner of my eye I could see Jeb nodding.

"It came down to who you would want more, Maximum." Jeb said confirming my statement. "Fang was the obvious winner."

I sent Fang a smile and I could see a hint of one on his lips as well.

"Now, can I hold my granddaughter?" Jeb asked holding out his arms and standing.

I handed her over reluctantly, but stood close. My eyes traveled to Fang to see the word 'granddaughter' had surprised him. I hadn't filled him in on my new findings. I looked at Jeb who was practically glowing as he held Sky. Maybe he wasn't SO bad. Yeah right.

"Can I ask you something else?" I asked Jeb.

He looked up at me, still smiling.

"You want to know how the voice came back?" He questioned raising an eyebrow.

I nodded.

"When Ari handed you over to us, we emplaned the chip in your arm. We felt you were safer with me to guide you. That's why we put it back in. You shouldn't have taken it out in the first place… it was reckless." He reprimanded.

"Well, you didn't give me much of a choice after all the brain explosions and vague statements." I said bitterly.

I looked at Jeb again and that's when I noticed it…

"Jeb…" I whispered feeling breathless.

He looked at me questionably. There was a red dot pointed at Jeb's forehead, like from a laser.

"Fang, do you see it?" I asked feeling him stand.

"Yes, get down!" He said running over.

It was too late though. The gunshot rang out and I could hear glass shattering in the background. It all played out in slow motion, at least it seemed like it.

Jeb fell to the ground, Sky in his arms. I had threw myself to the ground, as well as Fang.

"Sky!" I shouted crawling over to where Jeb lay, motionless.

Erasers began pouring into the house.

"Flock, get out!" Fang yelled hurrying toward me.

"Jeb, is she…?" I trailed off as soon as I saw the blood. I turned Jeb onto his back and gasped at what I saw. Jeb had been shot in the neck and he was bleeding out. Sky was under him, unharmed and I snatched her up quickly.

Fang was fighting Erasers and thankfully, there wasn't more than twenty.

I placed two fngers on Jeb's bloody neck for a pulse… but there wasn't one to be found. Jeb was dead. My father was dead.

I rose to my feet feeling dizzy and breathless. How could this happen? Why would the erasers turn on him?

I would have to ponder those questions later, because something hit me on the back of my head… and all went black.

AN: Hope you enjoyed! And yes... Jeb is really dead! The site to vote for an MR4 is www(dot)maximumride(dot)com and you don't have to reload to vote again... you can simply click over to the Max choices tab beside it then back to the counting tab and it will let you keep voting. SO GO VOTE! And when you come back... review! Because you know you love me... and... there's only four more chaps left!

22. Chapter 22

Relapse- Chapter 22

"Max, can you hear me?"

I squeezed my eyes together from the throbbing pain in my head. "Ugh." Was all I could manage.

"Hey, you ok?" It was the same voice as before.

"Fang?" I questioned not daring to open my eyes.

"Nah, it's Iggy." Iggy said laying his hand gently on my arm. "Fang's out like a light at the moment."

At that comment my eyes flew open to look upon the blond mutant bird boy. I instantly winced at the pain the light created on my eyes. Everything was blurry and jumbled, I felt like I was half asleep.

"Is he ok?" I managed to hiss out through clenched teeth.

"He's breathing." Iggy said in a 'duh' tone before adding, "So I guess that's a good sign."

"Just so you know, if I had enough strength to hit you right now, I would." I said clutching my head like I did during brain explosions, just not as tight and desperate.

"Then I guess it's a good thing you're down for the count at the moment." He said letting out a chuckle.

I'm glad he's enjoying me misery… not.

"What happened… how did Fang and I end up knocked out, yet we're not at the school?" I asked opening my eyes to small slits.

"Max, have you taken in your surroundings?" Iggy asked sounding confused. "We are at the school… well, us three are at the School."

"Where are the others?" I asked, shocked by the news.

"They got out through the window, they took Sky with them… she's safe." He explained. "What happened to Jeb, Max?

"They shot him dead." I said softly, almost in a whisper.

"They what?" He shouted.

I winced at the raise in voice level, as a new wave of pain crashed against the back of my skull and through my ears. "Not so loud." I groaned.

"Sorry." He said much lower. "You should let me check out your injury."

"I'm fine." I said beginning to sit up.

I closed my eyes as the room began to spin. I put my fingers on my temples, caressing them in a circular motion as I took deep breaths.

"We should try to wake Fang." I added.

"Don't worry about Fang right now, Max." Iggy said shaking his head. "From what I've heard so far, you can't even sit up without pain and agony sneaking up on you."

"I'll be fine." I responded rolling my eyes… more pain.

"Ow." I muttered closing my eyes once again.

"Well, my guess is a concussion… maybe worse." Iggy stated keeping his sightless eyes fixed on me. "If we do get out of here… someone is going to have to carry you."

"Absolutely not." I responded in a 'no nonsense' tone.

"Max, get over your pride and accept it." He said sounding angry. "It's that or you try to stand and end up falling on your butt, proving my point. Either way you get carried, the first one at least gives you your dignity."

"Oh joy." I said dryly.

"I'll wake Fang." Iggy muttered sounding annoyed.

"Knock yourself out." I said with a definite double meaning.

He glared at me then walked to the crumpled mass on the floor.

"Fang." He said shaking his arm.

Fang's eyes snapped open and he sat up faster than the speed of light, well… close enough. He winced as he shot his hand to his stomach.

"What is it?" I asked weakly. Oops.

"What's wrong?" He asked becoming alarmed at the sight of me.

"I asked first." I said glaring.

"Ribs." He said shortly. "You?"

"Head." I said mocking his lack of words.

"You get hit?" He asked standing.

"I guess." I muttered becoming increasingly bothered by his lack of speech.

"I think she has a concussion." Iggy stated in fact.

"But Iggy isn't a doctor." I said glaring at them.

"Close enough." Fang said tilting his head slightly. "I'll carry you out."

"And how are you gonna do that with cracked ribs?" I asked raising an eyebrow.

"They're not broken." Fang said shaking his head ever so slightly.

"Iggy?" I stated waiting for a consensus.

He walked over and checked Fang's abdomen. I saw both of them wince.

"Well?" I asked impatiently.

"One broken on the right side." The blond boy responded. "I'll have to carry you."

"I can do it." Fang said sounding angry.

"I'm not gonna let you hurt yourself more." I said staring him down.

"She's right, Fang." Iggy said backing me up.

"And you…" I said turning to Iggy. "You won't be able to carry me out, not when you don't know the plan of the building."

"She's right, Iggy." Fang said smugly.

"Therefore, I will walk." I said levering myself to my feet, slowly.

I fell back, striking the back of my head on the tile floor.

"Ow." I groaned.

"I'm carrying you." Fang said rolling his eyes, trying to mask the concern in them. He picked me up much to my disliking.

"I hate you." I whined in his arms.

"No you don't." He said factually.

"I wish I could though." I said frowning. "If I could… I would."

"She must have a concussion, because she is making no sense." Iggy said shaking his head.

I struggled to free myself from being carried by Fang, he only tightened his grip.

"Max…" He warned.

"Put me down." I said thrashing around.

"Would you quit it?" It wasn't really a question.

"No." I said becoming more determined.

"Max, stop or you'll break another one of his ribs." Iggy said rolling his eyes.

My eyes widened and I immediately froze. I had already forgotten about his broken rib.

I mouthed a 'sorry' to him.

"Just relax, Max." He said exhaling. "I'm gonna find us a way out of here."

AN: Sorry for the LONG wait!

23. Chapter 23

Relapse- Chapter 23

"I swear, Ig, you better be right about this." Fang said putting me down on my own two feet and pulling me tight against his body.

Iggy let us in on a little secret… he smuggled in a bomb. So right now Fang and I are in the corner farthest from the door, huddled together, while Iggy tries to blow the door open with his little weapon of mass destruction.

"Relax, the explosion isn't that big." Iggy said shaking his head. "Plus, I'm the one who has to light it then run for my life."

"Run fast." Fang said lacking sympathy.

I rolled my eyes as he gave me a 'what' look.

"Play nice." I said looking up at him.

"Yes, Mom." He shot back.

I smacked his chest then pulled away from him… only to begin my descent to the ground with much speed.

"Woah." Fang said catching me. "Jeez, you must have a concussion."

"I'm just a little dizzy." I argued trying to focus my eyes on anything.

"Max." He said clearly not amused. "Just be quiet and stay close."

"Ok." I said with a sigh as I relaxed my forehead against his chest.

"Prepare for countdown." Iggy piped up from by the door. "Who wants to do the honors?"

"Knock yourself out." Fang said through a smirk.

"Five." Iggy called out making me wince.

Fang tightened his arms around me.

"Four." God, my head hurt.

"Three." And this yelling isn't helping…


"Ugh, not so loud." I groaned. That's when I felt Fang grab my hands and place them over my ears. I looked up into his eyes.

"One." Iggy said sounding more distant.

I caught him striking a match and lighting the bomb out of the corner of my eye, then he ran over to Fang and I, careful with his footing.

"Cover your ears!" Iggy yelled, smiling at the door, probably wishing he could see the explosion for himself.

Fang removed his hands from over mine then clasped them upon his ears.

Just seconds later the bomb went off.

The force pushed Fang against me, into the wall. It wasn't with much force, just enough to move us. Iggy put his hand against the wall before it went off, so he barely even moved an inch. What can I say? The blind mutant is an expert with explosives.

"You two ok?" Iggy asked waving off some of the smoke that floated our way.

"Just peachy." I muttered pushing past Fang to inspect the door.

"What's the verdict?" Fang asked keeping his eyes on me, probably waiting for me to fall.

I turned back to him as my lips slowly formed into a smile. "We're golden."

"Yes!" Iggy said shooting his fist into the air.

"Let's go." I said motioning for them to follow me as I rested one of my hands against what was left of the doorframe.

"Care for a lift?" Fang asked coming up behind me and smirking against my ear.

"Not a chance." I answered sending a glare back at him before walking from the room.

"Ugh… flirt later." Iggy groaned from behind Fang.

Then I heard a noise behind me.

"What the…?" I started turning around quickly.

"Fang!" Iggy yelled pushing himself from the ground.

I sent Fang a glare after figuring out what I'd missed. Fang had tripped Iggy for the short teasing session.

Fang gave me a 'what' look.

"Cut it out." I said rolling my eyes. "In case you forgot, we're trying to escape hell at the moment."

"It must have slipped my mind." Fang said with a smirk.

I glared then turned and replied, "keep moving."

"Where is everybody?" Iggy piped up.

"I don't know… it seems pretty deserted." I said glancing all around me.

I sensed Fang stiffen beside me, so I stopped and turned to him. "What is it?"

He pointed in front of us, standing there, was Ari.

"Hello Maxi." Ari said in human form. "How's my sister?"

"Don't call me that." I said clenching my fists at my side. "As far as I'm concerned… I don't have a father or a werewolf as a brother."

"Don't call me that." He barked. "And I hate to disappoint you, but family doesn't disappear, Max. You can't erase what we are to each other."

"I can if I kill you." I said glaring at him.

"We both know you aren't going to do that, now don't we?" He said smugly.

"Maybe, but I will." Fang replied taking a step forward.

"Control your boy toy, sis." Ari said keeping his eyes on me. "I wouldn't want to kill my niece's father."

"Why not, you've tried many times before?" I asked bitterly.

"Because now that Dad is dead… I'm getting out of here."

"And where do you plan on going?" I asked carefully.

"Wherever." He said with a shrug. "I'm gonna take the time to live like a kid… before I expire."

"Do you know when that is?" Iggy asked suddenly.

"Anytime… I'm different than the other, but my time will come soon enough…"

"Do you know about us?" I asked crossing my arms.

"Nothing, except for there was talk you could live as long as regular humans." Ari said in thought. "Dad used to brag about it."

I nodded seeing the pain cross his facial features.

"Goodbye Max." He said turning and walking away.

"So that's it?" Fang asked furrowing his brow. "We're just free to go?"

"Don't question it." Iggy said shaking his head. "Just accept it."

"Let's go." I said keeping my eyes peeled for Ari returning. But deep inside myself, I knew he wouldn't be back.

AN: Review if you love me or my fan fics or BOTH. I hope it's both... Anyways... review.

24. Chapter 24

Relapse- Chapter 24

Walking and concussions don't mix very well, just trust me. Every time I put one of my feet down, I would sway and almost fall to the side. I'm surprised Fang and Iggy didn't decide to help themselves to a few chuckles by pushing me to one side and call it 'Max tipping'. I feel so dizzy…

"You ok?" Fang asked laying a comforting hand on my shoulder.

"Fine." I said as the world continued to spin every which way.

"You don't sound too good." Iggy piped up with a weary tone from behind us.

"Stop the twenty questions and keep moving." I ordered trying to hide my annoyance, since they obviously meant well.

"Are you going to be able to fly?" Fang asked ignoring my previous statement.

"If I can walk, I can fly." I abstractly retorted.

"Yeah, but the point is that you can't walk." Iggy fired back.

"Guys, I'm fine, so leave me alone." I growled trying to focus my eyes.

There was an awkward silence after this outburst and that's when the guilt set in. They meant well and I was treating them poorly all because of some minor brain damage (a concussion).

"I'm sorry." I said shattering the moment of peace.

"We're just worried about you." Iggy responded.

Here comes another wave of guilt…

"I know." I said closing my eyes. "I just want to get back to the flock and Sky."

"We'll see them soon, but right now you need to take care of yourself, Max." Fang warned, keeping his eyes on me.

"I will." I nodded, showing he could trust me. But I had to avoid his penetrating stare for just a moment longer, it was so strong.

"Let me carry you." He offered as I finally met his eyes, they were pleading with me.

"No." I shook my head.

Everything spun more then… it was getting out of control.

"Max?" Fang questioned eyeing me funny.

"Wha…?" I began, but then the ground jumped up at me… at least I was hoping that was what happened.

"Did she pass out?" Iggy asked worriedly.

"Close to it." Fang remarked shifting me in his grip.

"Don't let her sleep."

"I know."

"So wake her." Iggy said beginning to sound fuzzy.

"I am… just let me think." Fang yelled back.

I winced at the loud tone and anger. They were giving me an even bigger headache than before. I wish they would shut up.

"Max…" Fang probed.

"Shut up." I whispered scrunching my eyes and bringing my hands to my ears.

"I will if you can promise me that you'll stay awake." He told me, hovering above.

"So tired." I whispered faintly.

"I know, but you could die if you sleep." He was talking closer to my ear now.

"Don't… care." It was becoming harder to talk.

"Well, I do… we do…" He kissed my temple. "Stay awake."

I opened my eyes and gazed up at his worried expression. He never showed emotion back, just months ago. Now he is walking with his heart on his sleeve… so cliché, I know. But it is entirely true, he's changed. I guess we all have one way or another.

"I love you." I say with more power.

He nods and smiles, "I guessed that much."

We were silent for a few moments. He looked away, out at the sky.

"I love you too, you know." He said catching me off guard. I didn't expect him to say it back, not after the pause of silence.

"I guessed that much." I mocked with a weak smile playing on my lips. "Why the pause?"

"What do you mean?" He inquired looking down upon me.

"It took you awhile to say it back… why?" I asked letting the curiosity wash away some of the clouds covering my thinking process.

"I had to… make sure…" He kept his eyes on me for a reaction. "…that I meant it… through and through."

"And do you?" I smirked.

"No, I meant to say I love you more." He returned my lopsided grin.

"Ugh…" I groaned.

"What?" He asked eyeing me.

"You're getting sappy on me… and that is so… un-Fang." I said pushing myself off the ground to find some of the dizziness had passed.

I swayed a bit, but Fang held me steady. I did say 'some of the dizziness' not all.

"I'm sorry, what would you like me to say?" He asked cocking his head to the side.

"And you apologized!" I shouted with sarcasm. "What have you done with Fang?"

"You're not funny." He shook his head.

"Actually, I think it would be pretty darn funny if you two weren't so blatantly flirting." Iggy piped up rolling his blind eyes.

AN: Hope you liked it... or loved it... or something-ed it that is POSITIVE! Next and final installment comes tomorrow! REVIEW! And check out my new story called 'Coincide'.

25. Chapter 25

Relapse- Chapter 25

"There it is." I called out to Fang and Iggy while in flight. I've never felt so excited and relieved as I feel at this moment, pointing down at the house where the rest of the flock and my daughter are taking cover.

"Let's descend." Fang said coming behind me. I looked back at him and smiled, he even returned it!

"Ig, take my hand." I ordered beckoning him over with my index finger, which was completely wasted on him. He took my hand in his with perfect ease and we headed down with Fang close behind us.

"Max!" Gazzy shouted running out of the house, the others behind.

"Are you ok?" I asked enveloping him in a hug as he nodded joyfully.

Nudge hurried over to me with Sky in her arms, beaming at me.

"Can I baby-sit more often?" She asked passing me my daughter.

"Sure." I answered placing a kiss on both their heads.

Angel hugged my waist as I stroked her blond hair. Soon she released me and busied herself with the other three. I took the moment to talk to Fang… alone. We headed off into the trees, so we could still see the flock, but not be in ear shot, unless Ig was listening.

I hugged Fang, Sky practically being squashed between us in the process, and he held us both tight. It was the first time I felt like things were going to be ok. I had my flock and a family of my own to look after and love, something good finally came out of the whole genetic mess. Sure, Fang and I still had some obstacles ahead with Sky while she grows, but we could handle it. She had yet to talk, walk, fly… and if she developed powers, that would prove to be quite a challenge. And what if she ended up with a voice in her head, just like her psychotic mom, that would be lots of fun, not. But Jeb was dead now, so my voice was gone and she couldn't have one unless someone else spoke to her. Gosh, I was giving myself a headache.

"Dada." I heard a voice chime. I immediately looked around until my eyes rested upon Sky holding her arms out to Fang, clenching and unclenching her fists in anticipation.

"She just said her first word." I said in amazement. Fang was giving me a 'duh' look while he took her into his arms. He was practically glowing with pride. "Why would she said 'dada' first?"

I'm not going to lie, it made me jealous. I was the one that took on the major duties of parenthood, changing diapers and feeding her. Fang helped out by giving her bottles sometimes and rocking her to sleep. But I changed diapers! Fang didn't! And he is the first word out of her mouth… that is SO not fair.

"Because, like her mother, she can't get enough of me." He said smugly, giving me a smirk.

"Haha." I replied dryly.

"Are you ok?" He asked noticing my mood change.

"I'm sorry." I sighed. "I'm just being a jealous idiot."

"Please don't talk that way about the mother of my beautiful daughter, the woman I happen to love more than anything." He said looking into my eyes.

I smiled and kissed him.

"I wouldn't worry." He continued. "One of our other kids is bound to say 'mama' first."

My mouth dropped open. "Other kids?"

"What, you don't want more?" He questioned with a smile.

"Not right now." I scoffed.

"But when we're older." Fang pressed keeping his eyes locked with mine.

"Maybe when I'm thirty." I said turning away.

"Thirty?" He asked raising a dark eyebrow.

"Twenty-nine?" I offered.

"Max, we're not waiting fourteen years to have another kid." He said shaking his head.

"Excuse me?" I yelled. "Who has to carry the thing in her stomach, that'd be me. So I decide when we're ready."

"Sure play the 'if you carry it, you decide' card." He said bitterly.

"Well, when did you turn into 'Mr. Kidaholic'?" I inquired furrowing my brow.

"After I saw how the one in my arms has turned out." He said looking down at Sky as she giggled. "When did you become 'Ms. Antimom'?"

"I'm not anti-mom, I'm anti-more kids." I stated truthfully. "I love Sky and I would love to have more kids eventually. It's just the next time we have more children… I have to give birth and it will HURT a lot."

"You're stronger than anyone I know, Max." He said sounding confident.

I sighed, "When would you prefer we have the next one?"

"Four years at the latest." He replied thoughtfully.

"We'll see." I said as his eyes lit up. "But most likely it's not gonna happen."

"Like you can keep your hands off of me." He smirked again.

I shot him a look that said 'just watch me'. He smiled, taking the challenge and slowly walked over to me with our daughter still in his arms.

"Why are you smiling?" I asked curiously.

"How about a bet." He proposed.



"What kind of bet?"

His smile grew. "If I can get Sky to say 'mama' within the next minute, we have our next child in less than four years."

"And if you don't?" I asked eyeing him.

"Then you decide." He shrugged.

"Deal." I kissed his cheek. "Your minute starts now."

So, you can probably picture what happened next, right? Fang prodding her to say 'mama' in every way he could think of. BUT that isn't what happened. Instead, Fang stayed silent and handed me our daughter before giving me a kiss on my lips. I was completely confused and I could see the sincerity in his eyes.

"What gives?" I questioned.

"I want to have a baby when we're both ready." He said kissing me again.

"I love you." I told him with much feeling.

"You should." He said rolling his eyes. "I'm the greatest guy in the world."

"You are." I confirmed kissing him more deeply.

"Stop scarring your child by making her witness a make out session between her parents!" Iggy yelled from the group. Fang and I pulled apart and laughed a little.

"Three years." I heard myself say.

"Three years." He confirmed before kissing me again.

For once, I saw a happily ever after in my future.

AN: Hope you enjoyed the ending and I hope you'll find time to check out my newest fic 'Coincide'. And reviews make this author happy.