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Rating: Probably PG. A couple swear words (nothing bad), some sexual suggestiveness 
(no actual sex - I'm no good at writing it) LOL.
Characters: Scott, Jean, (mostly these 2 - particularly Scott), a little of Logan, the Professor, Rogue
Archive: Please ask first. I'll probably say yes, but I would like to know where it's going.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything in this story. I am using them without permission. 
No harm is intended or should be inferred.
Feedback: Please. Good or bad is fine. I love the ego-boosting of good, but bad is okay too, it 
helps my next one be better if I know what didn't work for you.

  • Author's note: In the original comic books, Scott was born with the ability to control his mutant powers, but lost the ability as a young boy due to a severe brain injury. (Basically, now they are stuck in the "on" position.) It's a long story, if you're interested in reading it, check out this site: http://members.nbci.com/GLX/xprofile16.html I know it doesn't mention anything about this in the movie, but reading this on the web gave me an idea for a story that refused to go away until I wrote it. The "Talk in the garage after Logan's arrival" that is referred to later in the story is profiled in my story "Trust" on this site.

  • In case you don't remember, Kitty was the girl that ran through the door in Professor Xavier's office.


"You think you've found a way to reverse the damage." Scott echoed the professor's words. Though his voice was calm and steady, his face expressionless as always, Xavier could sense the excitement his revelation was causing in his young team leader. That had always been Scott's greatest fear; the inherent danger of his powers; the need to control them with artificial devices, every moment of every day. "How?"

"Have you been keeping up on how Rogue's training is going?"

"Pretty much. I understand she has been able to control her powers much better lately; that she can control the amount of damage she does with her touch."

"Yes. But we've also discovered that her ability to borrow another mutant's powers has an unexpected side effect."

"Side effect?"

"If she touches another mutant quickly enough, the powers she absorbed from the first can be briefly transferred to the second."

"How did you discover this?"

"A few months ago as she was sleeping. Kitty wasn't thinking and when Rogue had a nightmare, she shook her to wake her up. Rogue pulled away and as she was recoiling, her hand briefly touched Jubilee. Jubilee leaned against the wall and phased through it. At first we didn't make the connection, but once we did, we tried it in more controlled situations, and it repeated itself every time."

Scott shook his head. "That's interesting, but I don't see what it has to do with me."

"The damage to your brain wasn't able to be healed by your own body, but if you linked with someone with enhanced healing abilities..." his voice trailed off as he saw the comprehension in Scott's face. "I know you don't like him, Scott, but isn't it worth it to be able to control your abilities? I know that's what you've always wanted."

Scott shook his head, not trusting himself to speak.

"It isn't?"

"I...just...I...I don't know." Scott leaned forward in the chair, rubbing his temples. The headache had been especially bad recently. "Do you know for sure that it would work?"

"Not for sure, no. But every test we did on Rogue came up positive. I reviewed your brain scans, and it appears that the damage could be healed with Logan's abilities."

"Have you told anyone else about this?"

"No. Not even Logan. I don't even know if he would allow it."

Scott snorted. "Oh, he'd do it. Any opportunity to gloat about me owing him. He would love that."

"Well, it's your decision of course, Scott, I just wanted to let you know about the possibility. There's no rush. Talk it over with Jean, see what she thinks. Let me know when you've made a decision."

Scott stood up, nodding. "I guess I have some thinking to do." Xavier nodded. "Goodnight Professor."

"Night Scott."

Scott left the office fully intending to go to bed, but once he got there, found he could not sleep, not even curled up next to Jean's soft figure. Why was he hesitating? A year ago if he'd been given this opportunity, he would have jumped at the chance. His mind went back to the events of a year ago, the girl that had been injured at the train station. His visor being ripped away, the roof exploding, shrapnel falling on innocent bystanders. He had been checking news sites on the internet, attempting to find some clue as to where Magneto might have taken Rogue when the headline on the New York Times website stood out and slapped him beside the head: "Westchester Station Damaged, Girl Critically Injured" He hadn't wanted to read the article, but hadn't been able to force himself away from it.


Westchester, New York: Police today are searching for the person responsible for an attack on the Westchester Train Station last night at about 9pm. The suspect is reportedly a mutant. According to witnesses, a man in his late twenties to early thirties entered the station at approximately 5 minutes to nine with a woman perhaps 5 years his senior. She approached the ticket counter, talking to the ticket agent. A short time later, another man attacked her, choking her and throwing her into the ticket counter. At this point, her companion started toward the ticket counter before being attacked from behind. Witnesses report seeing glimpses of another suspected mutant, a man who was able to climb the pillars at the station and an extremely long tongue which pulled the sunglasses off the first man. Upon the sunglasses being removed, the man's head jerked backward and a beam of intense energy shot up toward the ceiling, exploding it outward as if a bomb had been planted. The shrapnel from the damaged roof fell on 12 year old Alysia Cartright of Columbus Ohio, who had been in Westchester visiting her elderly grandmother.

"Oh it was just awful," said a bystander who wished to remain anonymous,"all those people screaming, it was like something out of a war movie, and then that poor girl. I saw a piece of cement hit her squarely in the forehead, and one of her arms was pinned under another piece. All that blood, it was just terrible." Ms. Cartright was taken to an area hospital where she is in critical condition with severe head injuries and shock. Anyone with any information on the whereabouts of the man in the sunglasses is asked to call the Westchester police station at 453-8763. All calls are confidential. The man is described as late 20's early 30's, approximately 6 feet tall, slim build, with short brown hair. He was wearing dark pants, a dark overcoat, a black baseball cap, and large wrap around sunglasses that covered a good portion of his face and both ears.


Scott finally gave up trying to sleep and carefully eased out of bed. Hopefully no one would be there. He needed some time to think.

The roof was empty, his favorite star gazing place vacant. But tonight, he was oblivious to the stars, the crickets, even the cold night air evoking goosebumps from his bare arms. He leaned back, laying out flat on the gently sloping roof. Alysia Cartright. He hadn't thought about her for a long time. He thought back to the news report he had seen a few days later on Channel 5.


....and now an update on the young girl injured at the train station on Wednesday. Ms. Alysia Cartright was upgraded from critical to serious condition today, and doctors are confident the worst is behind her.

"She's recovering well, although it remains to be seen if she will regain full brain function. After an injury like that, it's never easy..."

That update from Dr. Miles Kinney at Westchester Memorial Hospital, where Ms Cartright was taken after the attack. More on this story as it develops. Police have no leads on the attacker as of yet. Now, in sports...


Scott sighed. As the reports continued to filter in over the next few days, the news had been far from good. She had lived, but was described as severely brain damaged, barely able to perform basic functions for herself, and the arm that had been trapped under the cement had not been able to be saved. So somewhere, there's a girl with brain damage and an amputated arm thanks to me, he had thought bitterly. He had come close to turning himself in after that. Only the knowledge that he would not receive a fair trial and the reminder from the professor that he could do more good continuing to fight for mutant rights rather than rotting in a jail cell had kept him at the mansion.

"Honey, what are you doing up here?" Jean's voice startled him. He didn't think she was awake when he left. He sat up at her approach.

"Just thinking Jean, go back to bed. I'll be there in a minute."

"Uh huh. It's forty degrees out here. Here, put this on." She draped his robe around his shoulders, her touch lingering on his neck, stroking the short hairs at his collar. He shivered, not knowing if it was from her touch or the temperature.

"Thanks," he said, reaching over to stroke one finger up her cheek. She pulled away with a gasp.

"Damn, your hands are freezing! How long have you been out here?" He shrugged. "Scott, what's wrong? Bad dream?"

"No, I just..." his voice trailed off. Should he tell her? He had originally planned on making the decision himself, but now he didn't know. Shouldn't she be involved in a decision this important? Something like this could change both their lives. He reached around her, pulling her closer to him. She complied willingly, her cheek on his shoulder, a long sigh emanating from Jean. She loved it when he held her. His touch was like a wonderful warm sensation all through her body; the gentlest touch from him was enough to leave her aching for more, his mouth, his hands, all seemed how to know just how to touch her, how to elicit a pleasurable response, even the first time. She remembered the first time they met. He had been rather gawky, tall and lanky even then as a scared teenager, but there was something about him that touched her heart almost instantly, and the greeting handshake had made her gasp; the skin to skin contact. She had felt the touch all through her body, as if he had touched her everywhere, not just her hand, the small smile that told her he knew what she was thinking. She had heard the talk around the school, that he had "won"her, and about how lucky he was to have her, what a prize she was. She hated it. He hadn't won her any more than she had won him. They loved each other, plain and simple, and that was that. Neither of them was a prize. He irritated her sometimes with his inability to open up to her, how he always had to be persuaded to take a few hours off to spend some time alone together, and dammit, no matter how many times he tried, he always burned the scrambled eggs and made the coffee too strong. She irritated him how she sometimes took life too casually, ignoring what he felt was terrible danger, how she always wanted to talk about everything when he just needed some time to think, and of course her attraction to Logan. But they had both set aside the things that the other person did that annoyed them, choosing instead to focus on what they loved. Jean the compassion, loyalty, sense of humor, and gentleness in her fiancee, Scott the laughter, unselfishness, dedication, and respect for others in Jean. And in doing so, had found a love neither wished to be without.

She lifted her head from his shoulder. She could have sat there like that all night, but something was bothering him, and she couldn't leave him in pain, no matter how much she would have liked nothing better than to just hold him. "Scott, what is it?" she asked gently.

He turned toward her and opened his mouth as if to speak, then quickly closed it again, shaking his head. She could feel the confusion, the fear, in his mind. She reached out, gently pushing back a lock of hair from his forehead. He took her hand in both of his, squeezing gently. "Let's go inside, Jean."

She laughed. "Scott Summers, I do believe that's the most sensible thing I have ever heard you say." He smiled, but it was a tight, pained smile. Jean was sure, though she couldn't see them, that the smile never reached his eyes.

He still wasn't ready to sleep though, so instead, he stood by the window, gazing out on the dimly lit grounds. Jean came up and hugged him from behind, her head on his shoulder. He leaned his head on the top of hers, his arms around hers.

"The professor thinks he has found a way to reverse the brain damage."

"Brain damage. You mean yours?"


"But, that would mean you could control your powers without..." her voice trailed off as the full implications of what he was saying hit her.

"Without glasses or the visor." he finished.

She was about to burst into an overjoyed laugh when she felt the hesitation and fear in him. He wasn't excited. Why wasn't he excited?

"Scott, that's what you've always wanted. Why aren't you happy?"

He turned toward her, and around the corners of his glasses, she could see worry lines crinkling his face. "Because I would have to owe Logan for it."

"Owe him? How?"

"The professor discovered that Rogue is like a conduit; she can transfer powers from one mutant to another by touching both briefly. He wanted Rogue to transfer Logan's powers to me to heal the damage."

"How does he know it will work?"

"He doesn't. But in similar tests with Rogue, he said the results were encouraging."

"Oh." It made sense now. It had been over a year since Logan had joined the X-Men, and he and Scott still fought regularly. Although Jean had made it very clear to him that she had no interest in a relationship apart from Scott, he continued to pursue her. Scott had learned to respect him as a teammate, but she doubted the two of them would ever become anything resembling friends. "He would gloat about needing his help."

Scott nodded. "Yes."

"But is that really so bad? I know the guilt you've felt when innocent people have been hurt because you've lost control. And you can't tell me you don't still think about Alysia Cartright, I know you do."

"Yes. But it's not just Logan."

"You're afraid. You've hidden behind the glasses for so many years, they've become part of who you are."

He took a deep breath, let it out slowly. "I guess that's part of it. But....I mean....Oh God, I don't know." He turned away, punching the window frame in frustration, hard enough that a piece of plaster fell off the wall. Ouch, Jean thought, that's going to leave a bruise.

"Scott. Tell me."

The strained look was back. "I just...I don't think I would feel like me."

"What do you mean?"

"I just...no one else is looking for a cure for their powers, why the hell am I?" he finally spat out with as much venom as he could muster. Jean was surprised at the forceful tone.

"You're afraid you wouldn't still be a mutant?"

He started, too embarrassed to meet her eyes. He hated talks like this. Hated baring his soul, even to Jean. "I don't know. I guess."

"First of all, mister, you're looking for control, not a cure. We both know how dangerous your powers can be without protection. All you would be doing is giving yourself a chance to control them without the need for gadgets or devices that could very easily fail. No one has been killed, but that doesn't mean no one ever will. You need to think of that. And second, even if you didn't have your powers anymore, you still would be a mutant. That's genetic, not anything else. You wouldn't be abandoning us."

He nodded, his shoulders sagging. She could tell he was exhausted from trying to hold himself together with the weight of this news. "Scott, let's go to bed, you need some time to think it over."

"Yeah." he said, heading for the bed. She fell asleep almost instantly, her arms wrapped around his strong body.

But he found he STILL couldn't sleep. When she woke the next morning, he was again staring out the window. He turned when he heard her slide out of bed. Had he slept at all? She wondered. The rigid posture, the drawn expression, screamed exhaustion, but he had dealt with exhaustion before. He could make it through the day.

She approached him tentatively. His arms were folded across his chest, his jaw set in the universal "leave me alone" posture. He had said nothing, but she could tell his eyes were on her. She reached up, stroking her slim fingers down his cheek, and had to smile at the muscle twitch in his jaw. It was obvious he didn't want her touching him, but didn't really want her to stop either. Suddenly he opened his arms, pulling her into a tight embrace, his mouth at hers, rough, almost painful. She tried to pull away, but he just pulled her closer, the kiss increasing in pressure. She could have pushed him away with a quick telekinetic shove, but chose not to. Finally she was able to extricate her mouth from his and pushed his head away. "Scott, stop it, you're hurting me."

He released her so quickly she almost stumbled and turned away, shoulders hunched. "I'm sorry Jean, I didn't mean..." He turned back toward her, and she could see a single tear making its way down his cheek. "Shit! I can't do anything right!" He whirled, punching the window frame again, harder than the last time, this time breaking open his knuckles. He was too angry to notice the blood running down his hand.

For the first time since they had met, Jean was afraid of him. She knew he could have a violent temper; when a mission went wrong, she often found him in the gym beating the living daylights out of one of the punching bags, and the calm he projected when Logan made advances to her was just that, a projection. Underneath he was stewing. But never had he shown that side of his personality to her. She reached out, turning him around gently, taking the bruised hand in hers, kissing the back gently, tasting the salt of his blood. She was afraid, but she trusted him. She reached out with her mind, gently entering his, hoping to soothe the confusion, the fear, the anger.

Scott was angrier at himself than he had ever been. He had hurt Jean, his angel, the woman he loved more than he could imagine loving anyone. Stupid bastard! Why'd you have to go and do that? He could feel Jean's mind entering his own, questioning, testing. Why is she doing this? Isn't she angry at me? He decided to let her in. What could it hurt?

Jean probed gently, finding the frustration, the anger. She tried to soothe them the best she could, leaving feelings of happiness and love, and could feel his body relaxing. Not much, but a little. But not far away she found something unexpected. Guilt. She pulled back, smiling slightly.

"It's okay Scott, you didn't hurt me."

"But...you said...I thought..."

"You would have if you'd continued. But you hadn't yet."

He nodded, pulling her into a more gentle embrace this time, his hands soft and warm on her lightly clad back. She held him back tightly, trying to soothe his tense body as she had his tense mind. For some inexplicable reason, a single word came into her mind. Soulmates. The word had sounded ridiculous when she first heard it. The idea that another person could have the other half of your soul and you would only feel complete with them. She hadn't believed it at first. She hadn't been lacking for male companionship, but all of her relationships had felt superficial. But it had been different with Scott, right from the beginning. Less than a day after she had met him, she felt more comfortable with him than she had with any of her previous male friends, even the ones she had dated for months. That connection was probably why he infuriated her at times, but also why she allowed him certain liberties that weren't allowed to anyone else. If anyone else had been as rough with her as he just had, they would have been thrown against the far wall with an equally rough telekinetic shove. She was fiercely independent, stubborn, a vociferous supporter of women's rights, and would not tolerate harsh behavior from any man. Except Scott. Certain liberties, remember? She sometimes teased him about being distant, almost cold, even with his friends, but the truth was, she also kept much of herself hidden, choosing to reveal her deepest fears, her doubts and insecurities, only to her fiancee. And when he held her like this, it made it all worthwhile. They held that posture for many minutes, Scott finally speaking softly.

"You think I should do it, don't you?"

She was not surprised they were picking up the conversation where they had left off the night before. They thought so much alike that they often did, drawing bemused stares from whoever else might be present in the room.

"Yes I do. If for no other reason than you wouldn't have to worry about what happened if your glasses were knocked off." He pulled away slightly so he could look into her eyes. "I know it wouldn't be easy adjusting. I know you feel it's your responsibility as the leader to remain distant, and the glasses have helped you do that. Are you afraid that if we can see your eyes we'll all figure out you're not as tough as you would like us to think?"

She grinned at the scowl on his face. He was trying hard not to smile. Only Jean was allowed to talk to him like that. Only with Jean could he bear showing his weaknesses, his doubts. Only Jean.

"Had you ever thought you might be a better leader without them?"

"Better? How?"

"I know how frustrated you were that you couldn't help Storm at the train station when Magneto was kidnaping Rogue, and then at the Statue of Liberty. If Sabretooth hadn't been able to stop you by just removing your visor, the results could have been different. You didn't like Logan fighting Sabretooth; you thought it should be you. Maybe it could have been if you hadn't had to rely on the visor. And you wouldn't have had to worry about hurting me if he had tied you up."

He nodded, remembering the panic he had felt.

She reached up, tracing the frames of his glasses with her fingers, her voice softening to a whisper. "And besides, you told me once that you used to have beautiful brown eyes." She reached up toward his glasses. "Close your eyes, Scott."

"Jean, don't...." but she could tell his eyes were closed.

She gently removed the glasses. His eyes were clenched much tighter than they would have needed to be, but he wasn't taking any chances on hurting her. She kissed each eyelid gently, then slid the glasses back on. He was breathing heavily, an equal mixture of fear and desire running through his body. He hated that she had taken the chance with her safety, but found he was incredibly turned on by her actions. She had never touched his eyelids before; had never removed his glasses. He had never allowed her to. He hadn't realized how erotic the touch of her lips would be. For his whole life, the only touch had been his own rough hands as he washed his face, and the doctors who examined him after the first incident.

"I wasn't thinking of that. I forgot how much I like looking at your eyes, I hadn't thought you might like to do the same."

"The eyes are the windows to the soul."

He laughed. "Yeah, I guess so. All right. I'll do it."

"You're not doing it for me though, are you? That's the wrong reason."

"Not entirely, no. I spent a lot of time thinking last night. Personal feelings aside, it would be irresponsible for me to ignore something that would remove the danger. If I didn't do it and someone got hurt because of me, I could never forgive myself."

She took his face in her hands. "That's my Scott. Responsible to the end."

He laughed, pulling her closer. This time the kiss was gentle; passionate but not rough. "Let's just skip our morning classes and go back to bed."

"Hey, I'm not the one who stayed up all night mister. I'll be fine." The smile dropped. "You want me to find someone to teach your classes?"

"No, I'm okay. Not the first time I've stayed up all night." He said with his patented half smile, and his expression left little doubt as to what he was talking about.

"Scott Summers, you have a dirty mind!" But she had to laugh. She loved the playful side of him, when he would briefly act like a teenager in love, rather than Cyclops, Leader of the X-men. It never lasted as long as she would have liked, but she enjoyed it while she could.

"You're sure you're okay?"

"Yeah. Nothing a couple cups of coffee wont cure."

"Okay." She gave him a quick kiss and lunged for the bathroom. "I'm first!" She announced, slamming the door. He laughed. Only Jean could be so responsible and then at times act like a 10 year old. Only Jean could touch him like that. Only Jean.

"You knew I'd say yes?"

"Yes. You were thinking that you couldn't pass up the opportunity to eliminate the danger."

Scott shook his head with a slight smile. "You were reading my mind."

The professor shook his head, backing his chair out from behind the desk and approaching Scott. "No. I just know you, Scott. I should, we've been together long enough." Scott kneeled down, taking one of the Professor's hands in both of his.

"I don't know how to thank you for this."

"Don't thank me yet Scott. It may not work."

"Doesn't matter if it does or not. It's the thought that counts, remember. The fact that you were trying to help, whether or not it actually does help, is the important part."

"I'll always try to help you Scott, you know that. You've done so much for me, for the school, for my dream. It's the least I can do."

"Not as much as you've already done for me, sir."

"Scott, how many times have I told you, call me Charles."

"I...I can't, Professor. That's too disrespectful."

"Not if I ask you to do it."

"Sir, I'm sorry...I...I just can't. Please don't ask me to."

"All right Scott. I won't mention it again. I hope it works."

"Me too." Scott smiled and stood, turning to leave, but then stopped , turned back toward Xavier, and kneeling before the chair, enfolded the older man in a warm embrace. Charles returned the gesture, somewhat surprised. He knew Scott cared from him deeply, considered him a surrogate father, but never had his young leader hugged him. The extent of his affection had been limited to a handshake or a quick shoulder squeeze, never anything as personal as a hug. Quickly Scott stood, and without a look back, left the office.


Have the lab beds always been this hard? Scott wondered. No, just when you're waiting for a medical procedure that could change your life, he said to himself. Jean was hurrying around, checking every monitor for the hundredth time. Nothing could go wrong. Not when it involved Scott. Despite the Professor's assurances about Rogue's control, she was worried. Logan had barely survived his encounters with her; Scott would have been killed almost instantly. She glanced over at Scott. He was breathing deep and slow, the picture of calm collection; only she could sense his panic. Rogue had arrived a few minutes before and was now sitting on the bed next to Scott, eyes closed, inducing the meditative state that would enable her to have the greatest control over her powers. All they were waiting for was Logan; late as usual.

"Evening, everyone!" He burst through the door as loudly as possible. Rogue started, glared at him, and returned to her meditation. "So, you need my help, huh, One Eye?"

Scott just nodded. He knew Logan would try to bait him, and was not going to give him the satisfaction of a negative response. "Nothing wrong with accepting help from others, Logan. Nobody can do everything themselves."

Logan looked as if he had been punched. He was expecting at least a rise from Cyclops, better yet, a sarcastic phrase or two. He didn't know quite how to respond to Scott's quiet tone. Even worse were the words. He had become an on again off again member of the X-Men, but was unwilling to submit to the daily discipline that the others endured; the tightly scheduled days, the discipline of the team. He refused to be bossed around by Cyclops, picking and choosing which missions he accompanied the others on. And he still tried to deny that he needed anyone else's help for anything, even after each of the team members had saved his butt more than once. He knew Cyclops was making a dig on his independence, but he didn't have a quick retort to it. What could he say, that there WAS something wrong with accepting help? I'll get him later, he thought to himself.

"Okay, folks lets get this show on the road. I ain't got all night. It's such a nice night, I thought I'd go for a motorcycle ride."

Scott's head jerked up, glaring at Logan, who had that intolerable smirk on his face. There was little doubt as to WHOSE motorcycle he was referring to.

"I think that's the least you can do for me giving you your eyes back is to give me the bike, don't you think, One Eye?"

"No. If that's the only reason you're doing it, Logan, forget it. You'll have my gratitude, but nothing else. If that isn't enough, you can just leave right now." For several second, the two men glared at each other. Jean held her breath, looking back and forth between them. After all this, was Logan going to back out?

Logan snorted. "Yeah, whatever." He hopped up on the bed. "We can figure out later how you can pay me back." Jean almost had to smile. He couldn't care less if Scott ever paid him back. He was grateful for the opportunity he had been given at the school, the acceptance, the friendship, and had been looking for a way to reciprocate. His tough facade covered the sensitive, pained interior, the man afraid of his past, unsure of his future. But he could never tell Scott that. Nor could he tell him how much he had grown to respect and trust him, both as a friend and as a leader. He had to keep up the tough guy charade. It was what everyone expected. She wished she could tell Scott that, but she didn't think it was appropriate to reveal Logan's deepest thoughts, even if he was broadcasting them so strongly that she was unable to NOT hear them.

"Rogue? Are you ready?" She nodded without opening her eyes, reaching up a hand to Logan's face. Unlike the last time, at the Statue of Liberty, he didn't feel the pain, the draining of his strength, only a slight fatigue, like he had over exerted. Quickly she pulled back, and collecting herself again, reached toward Scott. He met her halfway, guiding her hand to his temple. The experience was far different for Scott. Where Logan's had been a draining, he felt a strength, a power, he had never experienced before, a sudden understanding of what it was like to be Logan. He didn't need Jean's instruments to tell him it was working. Slight pains, mild annoyances that he hadn't even thought about cleared up like they had never been there. That twinge in his ankle from where he had broken it a few years ago, the bruise he had received in the danger room the day before, the aching hand from punching the wall, the stiffness in his neck from falling asleep on his desk that afternoon, all gone. But more important that any of those was what was happening in his head. Ever since his powers had first manifested, he had had to deal with headaches. Once he received the ruby quartz sunglasses and could release some of the power, they had been better, but they had always been there. But not now. It was gone. Rogue let go, and the loss of Logan's strength was like a splash of cold water. He understood far better the reason for his cockiness, his arrogance. Hell, if I always felt that strong, I'd probably be cocky too, Scott thought. But the important part was unchanged. The headache was gone.


"I don't know yet Scott. The brain scan will take a minute to come up. How do you feel?"

"The headache is gone."

"That's a good sign. That could mean the damage is repaired. I don't know yet." She looked at the other two. "Logan, Rogue, you can go. If the headache is gone, the transfer was apparently successful."

"I thought you said you don't know if it worked." Rogue said.

"I don't. The damage is apparently repaired, but whether that's enough to give him control over his powers, that I don't know."

"All right. Give me a call if you need me again," she said, heading for the door.

"I will. You feel okay, Logan?"

"No problem, Jeanie. Later, One-Eye." He turned and was almost to the door when Scott spoke.




Logan smiled that wolfish smile, turning back to the door. Somehow the nickname Wolverine fit him quite well at the moment. Scott watched him leave, surprised. He had expected a sarcastic retort at least. Maybe he's changed.

Jean was smiling at him, but he barely noticed, fidgeting on the bed. "So when will we know if it worked or not?"

"I already know, Scott, I just thought you would rather not have them here when I told you." He could feel his heart thumping wildly in his chest. Why would she say that? It hadn't worked and she didn't want them there in case he felt like crying? But if it hadn't worked, why was she smiling? "So you said your eyes were brown?" She asked, reaching up a hand, stroking the side of his face.

"Yeah, but what..." his voice trailed off as he suddenly realized what she was saying. "You mean..." he couldn't finish, a lump in his throat.

"It looks like it."

"So I don't need these anymore?" he asked, reaching for his glasses. She stopped his hand before he could touch them.

"I don't know, Scott. I don't know how hard it will be to control them with your mind. Trust me, controlling things with your mind isn't easy."

He had to laugh at that one, remembering all her failures when she first came to the school, her embarrassment when she was trying to show him how well she was doing and dropped the coffee pot in the middle of the kitchen floor, coffee and broken glass everywhere. He nodded. He had realized that right from the start, that there was a risk in the procedure. What if the control was inconsistent? What if he couldn't find the "on" switch in his mind and couldn't use the beams at all?

"So, how do I start?"

"Only one way. Look at something that wont matter if it's damaged, take off your glasses and see what happens."

He nodded. "The woods. At worst, I would blow up a tree."

She laughed. "I'm sure the tree wouldn't appreciate that."

"Then I'll plant two more in apology."

"Okay, let's go. Shouldn't be anybody there at this time of night."

"Go ahead, Scott. Give it a try."

He nodded, reaching up to the glasses. He stroked the frames for a second, lost in thought. Then with a determined motion, pinned his gaze on the deepest part of the forest and pulled them off, ready to slam them back on if a beam erupted from his eyes.

Nothing. Nothing at all. For the first time since he was a teenager, he looked at the world through his own eyes, no lenses to block his sight. His eyes teared up almost instantly. He wiped away the moisture, but it was back in a second.

"Jean, why are my eyes watering so bad?"

"Maybe because you're crying, silly." she teased.

"No, I'm not. They're just watering."

"Must be the breeze. They're not used to any air movement. Remember, both your glasses and the visor fit tightly to your face. They haven't felt air movement in a long time. They'll get used to it." She moved closer, laying a hand on his shoulder. "Do you feel anything?"

"No. No pressure, no energy. Are you sure I can still use the beams?"

"No, but I don't see any reason you shouldn't be able to. All we did was allow you to control them, we didn't shut them off. Try shooting the tree."


"Um, I'm not sure. Maybe try to picture a beam coming out and shooting."

"Picture it? How?"

"I don't know. Just imagine it."

"Okay." she couldn't see his eyes, standing safely behind him as she was, but she could feel the tension in his mind, the concentration. For several seconds, nothing happened, then before she realized it, the tree was exploding in a blast of concussive force. He jumped back, quickly closing his eyes and sliding the glasses on.

"Scott? Are you okay?"

He nodded, nearly falling. She caught him and helped him sit. He was much heavier than her, but with the aid of her telekinesis, she was able to set him down gently. He leaned against her, clearly exhausted. "It's hard. I don't know if it's going to work. I can't put that much effort into using them every time."

"You wont have to. It will come easier after a while. You're using your mind in a way it's not used to."

"You sure?"

"Yes. It wasn't easy for me at first either. At first, I could only move things when I was angry; the anger seemed to give me additional strength. The first time I tried a controlled experiment, I could barely lift something as light as a pen, and it exhausted me for hours afterward."

"It's easier now."

"Much. Now I can lift something close to my own weight barely even thinking about it. You'll get it." He nodded, still breathing heavily. "Come on, that's enough for a first try, let's call it a night."

"Okay." He tried to stand, but his legs buckled under him. She helped him to his feet and together they returned to the mansion.


Two months. Two months he had been practicing alone. He would retreat to the forest alone in the evenings after class, not returning until late. She had asked him a couple times how it was going, and he responded with the same non-committal "Fine". She knew it wasn't easy; her telekinesis had been incredibly difficult to learn. At times she did well, other times she struggled so much she almost gave up hope for ever being consistently successful. But he wouldn't talk about how it was going at all, not the successes, not the failures.

Learning to use his powers had brought up an unexpected, and for Jean, unfortunate side effect. He had always had a tightly controlled, highly disciplined mind. He had better control of his thoughts and emotions than any other non-telepath she had ever encountered. She didn't know if it was a mutation or just a side effect of his leadership training and experience, but only the most powerful telepath could read his mind against his will. Even the professor, who was one of the strongest telepaths in the world, couldn't fully get in there if Scott chose to keep him out. But now, the discipline and hard work of his training in the control of his powers had strengthened his mind even further, keeping in the occasional stray thought or emotion that had previously slipped out. In the last year, since their talk in the garage after Logan's arrival, Scott had become far more amenable to letting her in and they had developed an unusual psychic rapport, each others thoughts and feelings like pleasant background noise in their minds. But now that was gone, and Jean missed it terribly. Without the soft touch of his mind, it was like he wasn't even there.

She returned one evening after being out running, surprised to see him in their room. Normally at this time of day he would be out hiding in the forest, practicing. But more surprising than him being there was what else was in the room. A candlelight dinner, soft music playing on the stereo, and a small, delicately wrapped package on the table. She smiled delightedly.

"Scott? What's all this?"

He smiled, the first smile she had seen in weeks. "Dinner, silly."

"Well, I can see that," she said, hands on her hips, "I meant why so fancy? And why did you dress up? Is this a formal dinner?" She almost laughed out loud at that. He had put on his one and only tuxedo, slipped a carnation in the lapel hole, polished his shoes, combed his hair even more precisely than usual. Damn, he looks good in a tux, Jean thought.

He strode to her in several quick, efficient strides, taking her hand, kissing the back. "You don't have to, but I wanted to." She looked down at herself. She felt she had been slacking off lately on her exercise, so had given herself a particularly hard workout, and looked and smelled like it. Scott was trying not to laugh, but she knew he could easily smell her body odor. She leaned closer and kissed him.

"I'll just take a quick shower, okay?"


He watched her go with delight. He really didn't care if she had just come back from running, her hair tied back by an unattractive clip, no makeup on and wearing sweaty workout clothes, smelling almost as bad as Logan's awful cigars, he still was turned on by her closeness. But, if she wanted to wash...


"Okay. I'm back." He turned and found himself staring. Red. She was wearing that beautiful red dress he had bought her the Christmas before. The one that brought out the color of her hair and made her eyes seem even greener. "You like?"

He took several deep breaths, almost overwhelmed by the vision before his eyes, completely overwhelmed by the love he felt toward her. How did I get so lucky? he wondered.

He finally found his voice. "You know I do." he whispered, his voice husky.

She smiled a little too knowingly. Of course she knew he liked the dress; he had bought it for her. But sometimes she just HAD to tease him.

"Okay, sexy. You still haven't told me the meaning for the dinner, though."

He turned serious again. "For putting up with me. I know I haven't been easy to live with the last couple months."

She laughed. "Scott, you haven't been easy to live with the last couple YEARS."

He hadn't been smiling before, but at her words, his mouth dropped open in hurt and shock. "You don't...I mean..."

The look of pain was evident on his face. Her smile dropped. She swore to herself. Dammit Jean, you know better than to talk to him like that. You know how insecure he is about your love for him! She had meant it as a joke, but he hadn't taken it that way. She took his hands in hers. "Relationships aren't easy regardless of the situation, Scott. And when you live the kind of mixed up lives that we do, that just makes it that much harder. You know we've had some rough times." He nodded. More than their share, it seemed. "And at times you make me so angry I'm tempted to toss you through the wall. But I love you. Don't you ever forget that. Just because I get angry at you sometimes doesn't mean I love you any less."

"I'm sorry, I don't mean to make you angry, it's just... I just...oh hell." he stumbled, finally pulling her into an embrace, kissing her softly. "Shall we eat?"

She smiled. "Sounds good. I'm starved." She picked up the wrapped box. "A gift? What's the occasion?"

"Because I love you. Isn't that occasion enough?"

She laughed, reaching across the table to squeeze his hand. "Sounds good to me. When can I open it?"

He put on his best stern teacher face. "After you've finished all your brussels sprouts, young lady."

She bowed her head in mock deference. "Yes, Mr. Summers." she said, mocking the title used by his students. He laughed. She had to smile. Something about him had changed. She hadn't noticed it until now, but he was less tense, less uptight. She wondered if it had something to do with the newfound control over his powers. He seldom relaxed. Even while sleeping he was often tense and nervous, afraid that he would roll over and knock the glasses off his face. Of course, he secured them with a strap before retiring for the night, but he still worried. She had thought that was just who he was, but maybe more than anything it had been fear at what his powers could do. Of course, I don't know if he can control them yet, she thought, he hasn't told me. Several times in the last two months she had asked him to remove his glasses, and every time he had refused, telling her that he wasn't confident in his abilities yet. She didn't think he had anything to worry about; as difficult as it had been for him to use them the first time, she thought he would have more difficulty turning them on than off, but that was Scott. He wouldn't take any chances with her safety. None.

The dinner was delicious, roast beef with gravy, mashed potatoes, mixed vegetables in a rich cream sauce, fresh baked bread, blueberry pie and red wine. She savored each item carefully, not really knowing which she was liking more, the food itself, or eating a meal with Scott for the first time in far too long.

"Is it okay?" he asked anxiously, seeing her eating slowly and misinterpreting her actions as not liking the food.

"It's wonderful. When did you learn to cook?"

He blushed. "Well, Remy helped me a little. He doesn't just cook Cajun, you know."

"Uh huh. Scott, you can't even make scrambled eggs without burning them. You didn't do this."

"Yes, I did really!"

"Okay, what exactly did you do?"


"I thought so."

"I mashed the potatoes!" he finally blurted out with an embarrassed smile.

"There you go!" She laughed. "Someday, Scott Summers, you need to learn how to cook."

"Only if you teach me."

She snorted. "Ha! You know me, I could burn water. Maybe Remy could teach us both."

"There's a plan."

He refilled her wine glass and his own. Handing her the gift, he moved toward the sofa. She picked up her glass and fingered the delicate wrapping. Sitting down beside him, she set the wine glass on the end table and carefully untied the bow.

"No, I didn't wrap it either. Ororo did."

"I wasn't going to ask. I know that's not among your talents either." The paper fell away, revealing a small, plain cardboard box. She turned it around, but the outside gave no clue as to the contents. She slid a nail under the tape securing it shut, and with a careful motion, lifted the top off.

Inside was a small rectangular object, wrapped in tissue paper. She carefully unfolded the paper, gazing in confusion at the small black object. "Scott, what..."

"Unfold the round parts. You'll see what it is." She did as he said, gazing intently at the object. What was it? Suddenly it dawned on her. Scott's visor. She seldom saw it off his face. It looked different sitting in a box. But why...

"Scott, why are you giving this to me?" she looked up at him, locking eyes with him. Locking eyes. Suddenly she realized what she was doing. She was looking at his eyes. Not his visor, not his glasses, his eyes. His very brown, warm, love-filled eyes.

"Scott?" she whispered, afraid this was a dream, and unwilling to wake if it was. "You..."

"I don't need them any more. It worked."

"You're sure?"

He nodded, turning toward the table. His forehead creased slightly, and suddenly, a fine beam shot from his eyes, pushing the salt shaker gently across the table, stopping just an inch from the edge. He turned back to her with a smile. "I don't know exactly how, but I can control them."

"You don't know how, you just do it."

"Yes. That's how your telekinesis is?"

"Yes. After a while, it becomes second nature, like walking. You don't have to think about it; your brain just knows how to do it."

"Yes. That's how it is."

She reached up a hand, tentatively stroking it down the side of his face. For the first time, her path was uninterrupted by his glasses. She traced the tan line, stroking gently on the eerie white where the glasses had lain for so long. The skin was soft, smooth, and incredibly sensitive, she discovered, as he shuddered at her caress.

"Jean, I..."

"Hush, lover,"she whispered, laying her hand across his mouth. "Let me touch you." She could feel his uncertainty, his tension. He was always like this when she touched him. He knew that her gentle fingers could make him forget everything but her, and he hated to lose control, even for a minute, even when they were alone. And he couldn't lose control right now. He still had another surprise for her.

With an effort, he pulled her hand away. "I have another gift for you, Jean. Come here." She set the box down and slid over closer to him. He reached up and gently touched the side of her face. With a jolt, she felt Scott's mind linking with hers. What the hell? she thought. He isn't a telepath. How can he do that? Suddenly she realized. He wasn't linking with her; she was with him. She had unconsciously been trying to re-establish the link ever since he cut it off, and he was finally letting her back in. She smiled, joy flowing through her at the remembered feeling of Scott's mind inside her own; the incredible feeling of his happiness and her own, flowing together, entwining around each other, unsure where one ended and the other began.

"But Scott, I thought..." he gently covered her mouth with his, preventing further questions. {{I'm sorry Jean, I had to shut you out for a while. I was afraid of your thoughts being a distraction while I learned to use my powers. I want you back now, if you'll let me.}}

She smiled inwardly at the voice in her mind. {{Of course I'll let you Scott. I missed it.}}

{{So did I.}}

She pulled away from his mouth, and with a stretch, reached up and kissed each eye, delighting at feeling him tremble, the tension in him melting away at her touch. The last time she had done that, he had enjoyed it, but not as fully as he could have, still fearful of opening his eyes and hurting her. He opened his eyes, without fear for the fist time, and Jean was almost overwhelmed by the love she saw there. Has he always had that look? she wondered. I wish I could have seen it years ago. She reached for him, enfolding him in a tight embrace. {{Oh Scott, I love you so much.}}

{{I love you too Jean.}} He slipped an arm under her legs, and, kissing her the whole time, carried her to bed. Gently laying her down, he knelt over her, squeezing her hips gently with his knees. He reached toward her face, and stroking the hair back from her face, kissed her forehead, her chin, then, as she closed her eyes, each eyelid, stroking her face and neck with his ever so gentle hands. Jean felt his lips on her eyelids, and shivered, losing herself in the sensations. He stopped and pulled away slightly, and she opened her eyes. He was looking at her, and she could feel the joy he was feeling through their link; the remarkable feeling of looking at her without the restriction of the red lenses. She reached up, tracing the line of his jaw with her fingers. He closed his eyes briefly, a shiver running through him at her touch, then opened them again, unable to get enough of looking at her, trying to make up for years of restriction. She smiled at the expression of wonder on his face, slightly embarrassed to be the object of such a look of awe. She pulled him down to her, and he complied willingly, kissing her neck, her shoulders, his hands roving over her body. She sighed deeply, reveling at the slow, gentle touches. Scott was never quick with her, never rough, but she felt in his mind the desire to stretch their lovemaking out for hours; the whole night if possible. Somehow, she knew this night was going to be better than any previous she had had with him...


"I tell you, Marie, a piece of toast is not enough breakfast for a growing girl."

"Logan, I stopped growing a year ago. Leave me alone, I'm just not that hungry. I'll eat something later. I promise."

"Well... you promise?"

"I promise. Don't worry, you've been taking good care of me."

Logan fidgeted. It was true he did care deeply for her, probably more than he would ever admit, but she was an adult. She didn't need a baby sitter.

"All right." he finally conceded. "You want some butter?"

"No, just the jam is fine, thanks Logan."

"Okay." he was heading for the fridge when the door swung open and Scott and Jean entered, talking and laughing. Thank God he hadn't already picked up the jam or he would have undoubtedly dropped it in shock.

"Morning, Logan. Morning Marie." Scott was smiling, enjoying the look on Logan's face.

"Morning, Mr. Summers, Miss Grey." She wasn't fully awake yet and it took an instant for it to sink in. But once it did, she nearly dropped her glass of orange juice. "Mr. Summers! Your eyes! You're...you're fixed?"

Scott laughed. "Yes." he took her gloved hand, squeezing gently. "Thanks to you."

She found herself transfixed by the deep brown eyes. "Well, it's the least I could do." She said softly. "Y'all have been so nice to me."

"Regardless. Thank you Marie."

She turned back to her toast, hoping her staring hadn't been too obvious. Damn, he has nice eyes, she thought to herself. Knock it off Rogue! He's your teacher! She said to herself. "You're welcome, Mr. Summers." she said shyly, hoping Jean wasn't picking up on what she was thinking. By the half smile she had, Rogue assumed she was.

Scott turned to Logan, extending his hand. "You too Logan. Thank you." Finally Logan regained his senses and shook Scott's hand, nodding his head at the thanks. Jean had to smile. Maybe they could become friends after all. "I guess you'll need to start calling me Scott now. One Eye doesn't make sense anymore."

The couple turned and headed for the door. When they were nearly there, Logan's voice rang out clear in the quiet kitchen. "See ya round, tightass." Jean glanced over at Scott. He had tensed up, set his jaw, but there was a slight smile at the corners of his mouth. She had to laugh. Maybe not.



Other Stories By Khylea


A Late Night Talk

Twists Of Fate



What Really Matters

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