Title: It Has Begun (6/?)
Author: Kata
Disclaimer: For the millionth time, they don't belong to me.
Rating: PG
Summery: The enemy revels itself.
Distribution: Give your URL first, unless I already have it.
Feedback: Give me some, and I'll love you forever!
Author's notes: Sorry if I made Howie a little overboard. I couldn't help myself! :-)

******

A rather short man with curly brown hair tied back in a ponytail was standing in the doorway. He spoke with the ease of someone who knew what he could get away with. "What could the police do?" He chuckled. "They'd never find me."

Maria had unconciously stepped near Michael, and he had his arm around her. "Who-- who are you you?" she stammered.

"Why, I am Howie, leader of the Pignas. Don't be frightenend. I won't do anything to you. Not yet, that is." His gaze flickered over to Michael and Tess. "I don't know why you and the rest of the Kizmas are so obsessed with this species." His eyes were scornful. "They're only humans, you know."

Michael's jaw tightened in anger. "They have more worth than you'll ever know."

"Oh, that's right!" Howie said in feinged delight. "You're the one with the human girlfriend!" He shook his head. "Giving up your destined mate for a human? Not very smart." Howie rubbed his hands together. "Well, I must be on my way, but know this," his voice suddenly turned serious, "the battle has begun." With that, he tuned, and disappeared down the street.

Michael was outraged. "How dare he? How dare he come in here and say all that stuff about humans! *We're* practically human."

"It's okay," Tess said soothenly. "I think I understand. I didn't think much of humans either, ten years ago."

"But you weren't like *that,*" Michael pointed out.

"Well," Maria said. "I guess we'll just have to prove him wrong about humans."

Alex nodded. "I know this is dangerous, but I can't help wanting to put him in his place."

The four stood their in silence, just thinking. Finally, Michael spoke. "We'd better get to Isabel and Max."

As soon as Alex had dressed, they were on their way. When they got there, they found police milling around the house, Isabel and Max standing in the middle of it all. Isabel silently went over to Alex, and he put his arms around her.

"I can't believe this is happening," she said.

"There's more," Michael said gently, and went on to tell them of their encounter with Howie.

"We can't back down, now," Max said. "None of us." He looked over at Maria and Alex. "This is your last chance. If you don't want to be involved, leave now."

"I'm with you all the way." Maria stated in a resolute voice.

Alex nodded in agreement. "There's no way I'm letting you deal with this alone."

"I'm in this, too." A seventh voice broke in. They all turned to see who their newest recruit was.

TBC...

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