The Aftermath of the Competition - A Wizards of Waverly Place fanfiction…

A/N - So here I am here with a new WOWP one-shot. This idea came to me, and I had to write it down. It is Max-centric and takes place once more after the WOWP final and focuses more on Max.
I still think it's unfair how Justin and Alex got to keep their powers while poor Max didn't. Also, I wouldn't say I like how they portrayed Max in the episode, so I wanted to do my take on this.
I believe this could've been a good continuation of the series and a moment where we could've seen Max struggle with being mortal and the moments between him and his family.

Well, I do not own Wizards of Waverly Place; if I did, Max probably would've had more story lines! :)

The Aftermath of the Competition
One Shot
By: DisneyGirl24

Max Russo frowned as he watched the area around him vanish. In a flash, he and his family were returned to their home on Waverly Place. His siblings Justin and Alex were getting hugged by their parents for both becoming full wizards, while Max sat silently on the sidelines, just wanting the celebration to end. It wasn't that he was happy for his older brother and sister; he was; it was just hard being the only Russo sibling to have not gotten any powers. After the hugging celebration died, his parents rushed downstairs to get something from their substation. At this moment, as Max was starting to put dishes in the dishwasher, someone noticed him while Zeke was questioning Justin and Alex about their new powers. Harper came over and pulled Max into a hug; he accepted it, even if it was a lovely moment for the two.
They rarely had moments like this.

After they pulled away, she squeezed his arm gently and worriedly eyed him. "You okay?"

Nodding, he smiled at her and thanked her. She pats his shoulder and then goes back over to Alex and Zeke. Justin then comes over, and the two hug. Max sighed as his brother hugged him; this could've been his chance to let his feelings out, but before the competition, they had promised one another and their father not to let it come between them; he was going to keep that promise no matter how hard it would be too.

"You okay, bro?" Justin questions after they hug; he looks at him with concern.

Max nods once more, "Yeah, I'm okay, thanks. It'll just take some time getting used to, is all." He finished with a sigh, talking about not having his powers, but Justin knew, and once more, his brother patted his shoulder.

"You've got this, Maxie; you are one the kindest people I know. You'll figure something out."

With a sigh, Max watches as Justin returns to the group. It was then Alex's turn; she came over and hugged him. By far, this had been the oddest moment; his older sister never was one to show affection toward him. Growing up, she and Justin were always close, and she rarely hugged Max or told him I love you. However, Max didn't question it; he just let the hug happen; he honestly needed it, not that he would ever admit it.

Once they pull away before Alex can ask the same question, Max says, "I'm okay, I promise."

Alex nods and says, "Are you sure? You can talk to us about anything."

"I'm sure, thank you. I'm happy for you and Justin; you'll make amazing wizards."

Smiling, Alex hugs him again, "Thanks, Maxie, that means a lot to us. But I'm serious when I say you can talk to us about anything, don't forget that." With that, Max nods, and Alex stops hugging him.

Again Alex goes back to the group of three, now making it a group of four. All of them were chatting and laughing, happy. Max felt guilty, upset, and sad inside, but he didn't want to ruin it for his brother and sister. So, once his parents brought a cake up to celebrate once more, Max decided he had, had enough for the night and wanted to turn in early. Going upstairs, Max enters his bedroom and closes the door with a sigh. Leaning against the door for a moment, he frowned. He wasn't a wizard anymore…Alex was the family wizard, and Justin was taking over wiztech…where did that leave Max? With the family sub station…

With a groan, Max lay on his bed; he felt the tears threatening to fall. No, he couldn't cry. Max wouldn't cry. But Max couldn't help it, and he let the tears roll down his cheeks as he felt sudden anger course through his body. Suddenly, without warning, Max shoved all the stuff off his nightstand, watching as a glass frame broke, not caring if it did or caused attention to that downstairs. He was angry and hurt, and the tears were coming faster than he could stop them. Standing up, Max started punching the wall, not caring that he was tearing his knuckles up.

But he didn't get to punch the wall long, for someone came behind him and pulled him into a hug, instantly trying to help calm him down. The sound of fallen items and shattering glass had gotten the family's attention, and Mr. Russo came rushing up to check on his son. Seeing his son punching a wall shocked him, but he knew that right now was the moment to yell. Instead, Jerry hugged Max and told him everything was okay. Mr. Russo knew why his son was upset, and he didn't blame him. Unfortunately, all he could do was be there for Max and know that over time, he would learn to deal with his emotions over losing the family wizard competition.

It took a good while for Max to stop crying; Mr. Russo had asked his son if he wanted to talk. To his dismay, Max shook his head and claimed he just wanted to go to bed. So, Max did just that. Lying down in bed, Max turned his back to his father, not wanting to speak to him at the moment, and just tried to fall asleep. With a frown, Mr. Russo left his son's room, turning the light off and closing the door behind him. Jerry wouldn't lie if he didn't say he was worried for his youngest, but he knew it was better to let him deal with his feelings. Coming downstairs, everyone looks at Jerry with concern. The loud noise had scared them all.

"Is Max okay?" Justin questioned, addressing the elephant in the room and causing everyone to go quiet as they all stared at Mr. Russo, wanting to know.

Mr. Russo sighs, "It's going to take some time, but Max will be alright. We need to be there for him if something happens; we can't judge him. Being the only one not to keep his powers, he's going through a lot, and he's going through it alone. Just be easy on him."

Everyone nods at this, feeling sad for Max now. Alex says, "Is he coming to have food with us? He does love cake!"

With a shake of his head, Mr. Russo sighs, "No, he wanted to go to bed, so let him rest."

At that, everyone frowned, still worried for Max, but Zeke distracted their minds with cake as he handed out some on plates. Everyone ate and chatted. Max tossed and turned for a while before finally falling asleep around midnight….

The following day Max shot up in bed, sweat dripping down his forehead, as his body shook from his dream. The wizard-turned-mortal had dreamt about his family's wizard competition the night before. Shaking his head and trying to slow his heart rate, Max looked over at the clock, which read: 5:55 am. Looking out his window, he saw the sun was starting to rise on the horizon over New York City. With a groan, he lays down and tries to fall back to sleep but can't with the memories of the wizard competition in his mind. Getting up, Max goes and showers, gets dressed, and brushes his hair and teeth before heading downstairs at about six-thirty am.

Coming downstairs onto the main level, Max sees his father is the only one up, and he's watching some random channel on TV. Walking over, he sees his father look up and smiles at him as Max sits down next to him on their orange couch. The two sat silently for a moment, Max unsure how to begin an apology for last night and Mr. Russo unsure how to bring it up without upsetting his son. Finally, Max leans back and looks at his father with a frown.

"Dad, about last night, I'm sorry -"

Mr. Russo cuts him off. "No, it's okay, I promise. I understand your going through a lot of emotions right now. It's only natural to let them. I agree, it's unfair how your brother and sister got to keep their powers and you didn't. I'm not surprised you feel like this, Maxie. I just wished you'd have talked to us, that was all. We're sorry if we made you feel left out yesterday."

Looking at his father in surprise, he bites his bottom lip and sighs. "You did…but it's alright. I didn't want to ruin Justin and Alex's moment, and I still think I did. It's probably better off. I don't have my powers anyway, just more proof I'm the family failure…."

"You are not the family failure nor a failure in general!" Mr. Russo barks out, causing Max to jump a little and look at his father, who is now supporting him, a look of concern on his face. Taking a deep breath, Mr. Russo scouts closer to his son, puts a hand on his shoulder, and squeezes it affectionately. "Max, just because you didn't win the competition doesn't mean you're a failure."

"Then - "Max began in thought as he looked at his father. "- Then what am I?"

"You're an amazing one, Max. You make people laugh and smile. You are always willing to help the family and ready to give it your all when needed. That is a winner, and I'm proud of you for that." Mr. Russo smiles as he side-hugs his son.

Max nods, "Oh, I guess that makes sense. Thanks, dad. Are you sure you're okay with me taking over the family business one day?" Max wondered as his eyes sparkled in hope at the thought of such a thing.

Nodding, Mr. Russo smiles. "I am sure, Maxie, if anyone of you three kids is taking it over, I'm glad it's you."

At this, Max smiles; it wouldn't be so bad running the family shop. It could stay in the Russo name, and since Max already had an in, he wouldn't need to go to college for a business degree. His father would likely pass it down to him; of course, that's a conversation for another day. Suddenly, Max didn't feel as upset as he had felt last night, and he knew that things would be alright in time. Being a mortal wouldn't be so bad; he could be with his current girlfriend, Talia Robison, and have a future with her. There were endless possibilities! Sure, being the family wizard or having full powers would've been great, but Max was sure he could figure life out with his father's help and determination. How hard could it be? With a smile, Max hugs his father, who hugs him back.

"Thanks, dad, this helped a lot."

"You're welcome, son, and remember it's still okay to be upset and have emotions; just talk to one of us next time if you need to."

They end their hugging here, and Max hangs out with his father until the other Russo members wake up. Mrs. Russo starts breakfast while Max and Mr. Russo set the table. Harper greets the family before helping Mr. Russo in the kitchen. Alex was once more the last one down, flashing herself in the right behind Max, scaring the daylights out of him. Everyone laughed at the situation before he gathered himself and glared at his sister while yelling at her not to do that. Alex mimicked him, and the family laughed before telling the two to knock it off. Just like that, they were all eating, and Max smiled at each of them. Even if Justin wasn't here at the moment due to starting his first day at Wiztech, Max nodded; yeah, everything was going to be alright, it was just going to take time, and he had the best people around to support him. Even if they were a dysfunctional family, Max knew that being a mortal wouldn't be all bad…