Some of the events and certainly the description are based on my experience with it. Though the Evans were lucky. They didn't have to go outside in the snow and sub-zero temperatures (that's Celsius, folks) to see it. They also weren't stupid like me and they didn't go out in their nightgowns with only garden shoes covering their bare feet. And let me just say that I was c o l d.
Things between Max and their mother had been smoothed out, just like Max had said. Isabel wasn't sure what he had said, but whatever it was, her mom seemed to have accepted it. Still, Isabel really, really wished he had just told her the truth. Not only would it have made life much simpler, but Isabel would have been much happier if her mom finally knew.
When the situation had come up, Isabel was ecstatic. Finally there was an excuse, a good excuse, to tell her mom. An excuse that Max and Michael may even agree with. Isabel had wanted to tell her mom for years. Practically ever since they had been adopted by the Evans. But Michael and, more importantly, Max didn't agree with her. They were convinced that telling her parents would just lead to disaster.
But Max had managed to settle things without resorting to telling her mom the truth, much to Isabel's disappointment. When their dad had come back home, they told him almost nothing of what had happened. He knew there had been a grease fire but that was it. When their dad had been convinced that no one had been hurt, he had dropped the subject.
"Max, Izzy, come out," their mother called.
Max and Isabel grabbed their jackets and went outside to join their parents.
"It isn't what I'd expected," Max commented.
Isabel murmured an agreement while staring at the moon. Just an hour ago it had hung full in the sky. Now less than half of it was showing. When you looked closely, you could see that the rest of it was covered with a dark shadow which was almost red.
"No," their mother agreed. "It's much darker than I thought."
"It doesn't look full anymore, does it," their father said, pointing out the obvious.
Isabel just stared at it silently. She could almost feel the moonbeams falling on her in that crisp winter evening. Everything was quiet. There were no cars or people to be heard, other than her family. It was such a peaceful night.
Soon Isabel's eyes began to seek out something else. One could only stare at the moon for so long, no matter how strange and beautiful it looked. Unconsciously she looked for her, Max and Michael's constellation, the V. She noticed Max had done the same.
Suddenly her mom gasped. Isabel looked over at her, alarmed. "What?" she demanded.
"Look at the moon! You can see it growing smaller," her mom said, awestricken.
Isabel looked back at the moon. Her mom was right. The moon did seem to be becoming smaller. It looked like it did a few days before the new moon. There was only a small sliver left. It was like watching a lunar eclipse.
They watched as the sliver grew smaller and smaller. Finally nothing of it was left. The rest of the moon, however, had grown lighter in colour. Instead of the dark, blood red shadow that had been there before, there was a vague, transparent shadow hanging over the moon now.
"It isn't red anymore," Max said.
"No," Isabel argued, "I can see it. It's not very obvious, but you can sort of see the red."
Max squinted and tried to get a better look. He shook his head. "I don't see it."
"Neither can I, anymore," Isabel admitted.
"I can," their mom said. "It seems to come and go."
Their dad shook his head. "I don't know what you're talking about. It hasn't looked red at all tonight."
"It just depends on the way you look at it," Isabel told him. She could see a hint of red again.
"I agree with dad," Max said. "It's a stretch to call it red."
"Maybe," admitted Isabel.
"The stars seem brighter tonight, too," their mom remarked.
Once again Isabel stopped looking at the moon and started to look at the tapestry of stars that surrounded it. Her mom was right; the stars did seem brighter tonight. She wondered if it had anything to do with the fact that tonight was the "bloody moon," as people were calling it.
"There's the Big Dipper," their dad pointed out.
"And the North Star," Max added quietly.
"What about those three stars. That's a constellation, isn't it?" their mom asked, pointing to three bright stars lined up in an almost perfect row.
"Orion's belt, I think," their dad said. He looked at Max and Isabel. "Right?"
Max nodded. His eyes scanned the sky for other constellations to point out.
"There's the V," Isabel said carelessly, pointing out their constellation.
Their mom cocked her head. "What constellation is that, Izzy?" she asked.
Isabel realized her mistake. "I'm not sure," she said lightly.
"Max, do you know?" their dad asked. Their parents knew of Max's interest in the stars, even if they didn't know the reason behind it. He had been one of the kids who were into astrology when he was younger. He had even had a telescope.
"No," Max said, hesitating. "I don't know what it's called."
Both he and Isabel continued to stare at the constellation. Isabel closed her eyes and sighed. She knew Max was feeling just as melancholy as she was. It wasn't fun, thinking about where they had come from and who they were.
When she opened her eyes, she saw Max smiling at her. She smiled back.
"Come on in, it's getting cold," their mom said, seemingly oblivious to the exchange.
Max put his arm around Isabel's shoulder and they walked back inside their nice warm home. Roswell was home and it always would be, no matter what happened. Isabel just wished that Max and Michael could see that.
Diane Evans closed the front door and locked it. Outside the red moon slowly started to disappear, replaced by the full moon it had concealed a few hours ago. But for now the bloody moon dominated the skies.