'Sup there everybody that actually decided to read this. Welcome to my new story. Honestly, the idea for this story just sorta' came to me when I was waiting for my boyfriend after playing eighty fucking hours of Life is Strange in the span of a week. I was just sorta' wondering, 'What if Max's consciousness didn't return to her eighteen year-old form at the end of episode three? What if her prowess in precognition expanded as she used her powers, similar to her control over time? What happened in the alternate timeline that made Alter. Max be so different from Prime Max? And, while Max had powers over time in Dark Room, was that only caused by Prime Max being in Alter. Max, or did Alter. Max also have time powers?' And thus, this story was made.
Honestly, this is only going on right now to see if people actually want to read it. I'll probably write the next couple chapters out, but I won't publish them for a couple weeks so I can see what the reception is.
I sighed as I rest against the stairs, my heart beating rapidly. The keys had been tossed out the window; hopefully William doesn't hear them when he leaves the house. As long as the pager doesn't work that far a distance, then he should be taking the bus, meaning he'll survive. I felt a bright smile come to my face. Chloe won't lose her dad, she (hopefully) feel abandoned when I leave for Seattle. She won't want to die in the future.
The younger form of my punk friend slowly walked up to me. "Max, you feeling okay?" she asked cautiously. "You're acting really weird, is something wrong?"
I grabbed her wrists and softly jumped, giddy excitement filling my thirteen year-old body. "Chloe, I'm awesome! We're awesome!" She looked at me awkwardly before she shrugged, going back over to the range to finish the pancakes.
Or… were they crepes? Ah well, it doesn't matter. William's alive! I lied against the wall and closed my eyes, wholly expecting to return to the present… future… wherever I came from.
But… after a few minutes, nothing happened. I opened my eyes, and I was still at the Price house, still in my thirteen year-old body, and still with the memories of the Prime timeline.
Can… Can I not return? My eyes widened a smidge, my body starting to shake slightly. Am I stuck in this past? Will I have to live through life again? I slowly slid down the wall. What did… what did that mean? What did that mean for me? For Chloe, Hell, for the entirety of Arcadia Bay!? There were only two days left until the Storm hit!
Do I… do I still have my powers? I know I used them a couple times before William left, but… Chloe getting shot by Nathan was the catalyst that gave me my powers. If that doesn't happen in this timeline… Will I ever have my powers? If not, what could stop that storm? Hell, will that storm even happen?
I took a haggard breath and looked up. I watched Chloe hum and dance a little while making the pancakes, memorising her movements, before lifting up my right hand. Here goes nothing.
If you've never had the ability to rewind time, then there's no real way for me to describe the sensation to you besides… well, besides as a sort of pushing. You just sort of push time back, and you just sort of need to go with your gut about when to stop pushing. And so, I pushed. At first nothing happened, and then slowly, I watched as Chloe retraced her steps. Performing all of her actions in reverse.
I felt a bit of relief. I was still able to rewind. But I was a little worried about what that meant for Arcadia Bay and the storm. Hell, I was terrified about what that could mean for me. I was so used to my future—my relationships with my parents, with my friends, Hell, I was used to my relationship with Chloe. My Chloe, the Chloe that lost her dad and her best friend in the span of a week, the Chloe that ran from home, rebelled against her mom and step-douche (I do so love the names she gave David, even if he wasn't as bad as I first thought he was), the Chloe that owed three-grand plus interest to Frank, who had lost her other best friend.
And it was then that I realised, I'd forgotten how to interact with the old Chloe, the Chloe that was happy and loved life. All my friends back in Seattle were so similar to Chloe, it just felt… normal, almost. As if that was the Chloe I was supposed to know, supposed to be with.
"Uhh… Max?" I looked up at the girl in question, her eyes suddenly wide with worry. It was then that I felt the tears on my face. I'd been crying? In fact… it felt like my entire body was shaking. I'd gone into a full on panic?
Chloe dropped to her knees and wrapped me in a hug. "Shh…" she said soothingly, rubbing my back. "I have no fucking clue what's going on with you, but it's okay Max." I smiled. I guess Chloe had always had the mouth of a sailor. Though, I guess I wasn't much better.
Wait… what? Of course I was better, I used to hate swearing, and only did it when someone like Nathan or Victoria got on my nerves. But… I swore all the time, despite my parents' attempts to get me to stop.
Images started to flash in my mind. Were those… were those memories of this Max? Was saving William truly a completely different Universe, with a completely different Maxine Caulfield, even before the incident?
"Freaking Chaos Theory…" I muttered quietly, not wanting Chloe to hear me. More images started to flash—I guess the Universe decided that if I was gonna' remain in that timeline, I should assimilate to what had happened. Well isn't that nice of it?
Note the sarcasm.
I sighed and buried my head into my knees, trying to get control of my shaking body. Chloe was still holding me and whispering to me trying to calm me down. I don't even know why I was panicking. I still had memories of my universe, as well as slowly gaining the memories that this universe's Maxine had. I just had to live in this world for five years, or until I figure out how to get back to my world. Simple!
But… But who said time would wait for me in my world? What if… what if I found a way to get back, but it wasn't soon enough. Would I get back after the storm? Would everyone be dead when I got back, if I got back?
Dog, the panic attack was getting worse.
"Shh, it's okay Super Max," Chloe apparently pulled my hair out of its ponytail and was slowly stroking it, working as hard as possible to calm me down. "I still don't know what's wrong, but it's okay. You just need to calm down, alright?" Jesus, I don't think I've heard Chloe this worried and scared besides William's death and when she was stuck on the train tracks.
I drew a haggard breath. Okay, Super Max. Get it under control. You'll… You'll figure everything out. Everyone's depending on you. Joyce, Brooke, Stella, Dana, Juliet, Warren, Hell even Victoria and… and Chloe. Everyone in Arcadia Bay are depending on me. I need to figure this out.
I sent a grateful smile to Chloe once I got my breathing under control. My body was still shaking, but nowhere near as badly as it was initially. I could… I could make this work, right? Maybe… Maybe I could fix all of my other mistakes. I could keep in touch with Chloe when I move to Seattle—Dog, maybe I could even talk my parents out of moving to Seattle completely!
No… then I'd never meet Kristen and Fernando, and that'd cause too big of a difference between the two universes. My knowledge of future events would be completely useless.
I urged Chloe to let go so I could stand up. "The pancakes might be burning," I joked, grinning wryly at her. Her eyes widened in mock horror before she rushed back into the kitchen to check on them.
I shook my head slightly. Good ole Chloe. I stood up shakily, my body still shivering a little, and walked over to the couch in the living room. I plopped onto it and gazed around, my mind getting lost in its self again.
How much of an impact on the future will William's survival cost? Joyce won't marry David, one of the three major things that caused Chloe to become… well… the Chloe I knew from my world. Does that mean she won't meet and get close to Rachel? She shouldn't have any reason to interact with Frank, unless those were… destined, I guess?
I frowned. Damn it, Chloe was the biggest piece of help I had during the investigation for Rachel, as well as the investigation to prove that Nathan did something to Kate before… before she jumped.
I closed my eyes, hoping to doze for a bit. Of course, that didn't happen. An image started to paint itself into my mind, starting off as just specks of paint on the canvas, before slowly filling with colour and definition. Once the image had been fully painted, I saw Chloe.
No. I saw two versions of Chloe. Two very, very different versions of Chloe. Both looked like a nineteen year-old version of the Chloe in this world—hair cut like my Chloe's, but still her natural dirty blonde. The biggest thing to catch my eye though, was that one of them was lying in what looked like a hospital bed inside her house, expensive medical equipment surrounding her. While the other Chloe was sitting in her old room, still decked out in all of her punk gear, looking very similar to my old Chloe—minus the blue hair (though it did look like the tips of her hair were a sort of fading blue shade).
What… what was this? What was happening? Why was one Chloe connected to all that equipment, while the other was just fine?
Another image replaced that one, one of an actual photo—one of Chloe, smiling while holding up a key, a brand new truck sitting behind her. This Chloe got a car? And… what did the photo have to do with the other image? Two more photos replaced that one, one of Chloe sitting inside a hospital with William and Joyce, perfectly fine, but obviously crying. She wasn't hurt, so that wasn't the sickly Chloe I saw in the first image. The second photo was of Chloe's truck, but… it wasn't on the road. Or parked. Or even on its wheels—it was stuck in a ditch, the driver's side of the cab completely totalled.
Holy shit… was that… Did the sick Chloe get in a wreck?
I snapped awake with a gasp, my eyes snapping open and my heart beating at a ridiculous bpm. What… what the fuck was that? I looked around—still in Chloe's house. I looked down—still in 2008. I leaned back a little—Chloe was still making pancakes. Guess they didn't burn.
But… Seriously. What the fuck did I just see? Did I… did I get a new subset to my powers? No… that… that was just a bad dream. A weird and fucked up dream caused by my timeline and universe hopping and holy shit, I'm letting this world's Maxine's awful mouth get to me again.
I glanced at the clock—it couldn't have been maybe more than a half a minute since my eyes closed. Can people fall into and out of dreams that quickly? I sighed and palmed my eyes. After everything that had happened with Chloe earlier, I was already exhausted. And now more crazy shit's happened, and it's back to being ten in the fucking morning!
Whoah… calm down there alter. Max. No need to lose your head over something like this.
Chloe broke me out of my musings with a rather loud, "First batch of pancakes are done!" Oh yeah, eccentric and exuberant Chloe's back. After dealing with Kristen, Fernando, and their friends from Seattle for five years, simple eccentricity and exuberance caused by just being a happy person was a little rare to me.
I mean, to be fair, it was Seattle; the rainy city, the originator of grunge music, and supposedly the suicide capitol of the US (though I'm pretty sure some articles debunked that myth).
I got up slowly and watched as Chloe happily walked to the table with a plate of pancakes, setting them onto the table. She glanced up to me, and her eyes narrowed in worry. "Dude, seriously, what's wrong?" she asked me. "You've been acting super strange. What's up?"
I looked into her eyes and sighed tiredly, "Just a hella' crazy dream."
Okay, so, what'd you guys think? I did my best to keep Prime Max as in character as possible, while still mixing what I perceived to be Alter. Max's personality in to her (the more frequent use of swearing, for example). Also, what'd you guys think of Max's expanding precognition? The idea for Max to be able to see branching paths in the timeline came to me from a Life is Strange fic I read called "The Power is On" by rowanred81. I found it the other day and read the entire series that night, because of how damned good it is.
Anyway, please tell me what you guys thought. I hate to do this, but please, if you're able to, review. It's hella' awesome to see what you all think of things, whether good or bad (though for both, please write an explanation as to why you felt the way you did). Besides, it helps improve my style of writing.
Now, to go get to 100 hours in Life is Strange and type up the next chapter for "Reading the Future".