Disclaimer. The X-Men and any recognizable characters
Marvel, Siku is darqstar's, anyone else is mine. Ask first if you want
borrow 'em. I'm not making any money off of this, so don't waste your
or mine, suing OK? You wouldn't get anything anyway, I'm flat broke.
~words~ depicts psychic talk
*words* denotes thinking to oneself
//words// is flashbacks
Rogue sat quietly at Remy's
bedside waiting for him to wake up again. He'd awakened briefly earlier
that morning, smiled at her and Ororo, then fell almost immediately back
to sleep. Rogue was glad for a moment alone with Remy, even if he was
asleep. Ororo had left to water her plants and get a little something to
eat. Rogue didn't really count Scott, because he too was asleep. He had
slept almost as much as Remy had during the past three days since the
rally. Hank said it was good for him, Scott rarely got enough sleep
unless he was forced to. *Blue Boy is right. * Rogue thought to herself,
as she glanced at Scott. *That man works himself too hard. Maybe that's
why we all respect him so much. 'Cuz he works hard and he cares about
all of us. Even the ones he don't really like too much. *
"'Ello chere." Remy
Rogue, startled by Remy's
voice, looked back at Remy. "Hi sugah. Don't you eva scare me like
that again swamp rat, ya hear?" Rogue gently scolded him as she
fought back the tears of joy that welled behind her eyes.
"I won'," Remy
said, then turned his head to look at Scott. "How is he? He gonna
be all right," he asked with genuine concern.
"Hank says he's gonna be
fine. He hit his head on a rock when ya knocked into him. Got a pretty
nasty cut and a bad concussion, but that's it. Hank says with a couple
more days rest he'll be good as new," she paused for a second, then
continued, "thanks to you. He said you saved his life. He's the one
that carried you back to the Blackbird and inta the med-lab. When Ah saw
all that blood on the two of ya ... Ah was so scared. I thought I'd lost
ya. Remy, I'm so sorry for the way Ah been treatin' ya. Ah was so
Remy put a finger to his
mouth, "shhh" he said, cutting her off. "Don't, chere.
Remy un'erstand. Ya had a right to be angry with me. You all did. What I
did wasn't right, no matter the reason. I'm gonna be a better man, chere.
I swear it."
"I know ya will."
Rogue said, then gently kissed him on the top of his head.
"He really carried me
himself? Even tho' he was hurt?" He asked her in disbelief.
"Yup, Jean wasn't none
too happy 'bout it either. I think she understands why, though."
"Where's Ro?" Remy
asked. He remembered seeing her when he'd briefly awakened earlier that
day, and wondered where she'd gone.
"She went ta water her
plants and eat. I'll get her back in here. She'll be happy ta see you're
awake." Rogue started to get up but Remy stopped her.
"Non, tell her to get
some sleep. You should too. You look exhausted, chere."
Rogue started to protest then
stopped. He was right. She was exhausted, as was Ororo. "All right
sugah. I'll take a nap and come back ta see ya later.
Before Rogue even made it to the door, he was sound asleep again.
xxxxx The next day xxxxx
Scott sat quietly on the
mansion roof, basking in the warmth of the early autumn sun. The weather
was unseasonably warm. A mild breeze blew gently. New York's autumns
were often colder, requiring its residents to wear a jacket or at least
a heavy sweater. Scott was wearing his favorite pair of worn blue jeans
and a light denim shirt Jean had given him on his birthday. He knew
Ororo was the reason for the warm weather. Remy had finally woken up the
previous morning, putting Ororo in an extremely good mood. Either she or
Rogue had been sitting with him around the clock since Hank had finished
the surgery four days ago, until yesterday, when he had woken up for a
few seconds. Scott found out late last night that Remy had woken up
again that afternoon and had promptly sent both Rogue and Ororo to bed
for some much needed sleep.
Scott said as Remy came onto the roof.
Remy stopped for a second,
startled. Not only had Scott known it was him, but he'd called him Remy!
*I been here all dis time an he ne'er called me anyt'ing but Gambit or
LeBeau. * Gambit pushed that thought aside and focused on the other
thing that had startled him. "You telepathic too now, homme?"
"No. I have very good
hearing. I heard you sigh. I'm assuming it's because you saw me."
He said, then added "Often times, when someone loses one or more of
their senses, one or more of the other senses is heightened. I guess
that also goes for people who have had a sense ...," Scott paused
for a second, unsure of how to phase what he wanted to say, " ...
impaired. Shortly after I awoke from my coma I started having headaches
and trouble with my eyes. That's also when I realized that my hearing
was a lot better than it was before the accident." Scott went
silent as he thought of all the things the couples who'd brought him
back to the orphanage had said.
// "He's always so
quiet," a woman says. "He barely says anything more than yes
ma'am or sir, or no ma'am or sir."
"It's not that we don't
like then boy Miss Branson," a man says "we just want a more
normal kid." The man looks to the woman, his wife, who spoke
before. "Right, Jess?"
"Right Travis." She
says softly. Truth be told, she wants to keep Scott. * He's such a
polite little boy, and so alone, * she thinks to herself, *but he gave
me a healthy little girl. Who am I to deny him that in a son? * She
pauses in her own thoughts for a moment. *If he just tried a little
harder, maybe he could get through to Scott. He's just too quick to
judge people, * she thinks harshly, then brushes the thought away. The
woman is jarred from her thoughts as her husband takes her hand and
"Still, Miss Branson, he
obviously has problems. He needs help that we just can't give him. We
have a young daughter at home and we just don't have time to give the
boy that much attention. You should have told us about his problems
before we took him home," Travis says as he turns to leave.
"I'm sorry you feel that
way, Mister West," she says sadly as the couple leaves her office.
Behind the closed door, a
little boy stands unnoticed. He hangs his head as he listens to the
adults talk about him. When they stop, he runs down the hall as quietly
as he can, silent tears streaming down his cheeks.//
// "That kid ain't
normal, Miss Branson. You should have told us all this before we took
him home. He is dangerous for Christ's sake! What if he'd hurt someone?
We can't be responsible for a boy like that." The woman stands and
she and her husband walk out of the office.
The same boy, now eleven,
listens through the shut door. Once again the tears stream down his
slender cheeks as he runs as quietly as he can down the hall.//
// "He's a damn freak!
He put a hole through my kitchen wall! Through the wall!" The man
repeats, nearly screaming, his face red with anger. "Freaks like
him have no place with normal people. He shouldn't even be near any of
these other kids. You shouldn't be trying to find that freak a home, you
should be having him locked away." With that said the man and his
wife storm out of the office.
Miss Branson sighs as the
couple leaves. She has a lump in her throat and the man's angry words
make her feel sick to her stomach. *The older he gets the more harshly
he's rejected. Why can't they look past his mutation and see what a
wonderful, special boy Scott is, * she thinks to herself. *I'd adopt him
myself if I could. Damn that stupid rule, * she thinks as she gets to
her feet. The orphanage has a strict rule. No spouse, no adoption. She
sighs and decides to take a walk outside. As she walks, she passes a
small bush, and hears muffled sobbing. She looks behind the bush and
sees Scott sitting with his hands over his eyes.
She kneels in front of him
and places a hand on his shoulder. "You heard, I guess?"
He looks up at her, tears
falling silently down his cheeks, and nods.
"Oh Scott ... I'm so
"Scott ... Scott, are
you OK, mon ami," Remy asked with concern, placing his good hand on
Scott's shoulder. With some effort, he sat down beside Scott.
Scott shook his head gently as he heard Remy call his
name, and the memories faded. "Fine," he said. "I was
just ... nevermind. So, what are you doing up here? Hank will flip if he
finds out you left the med-lab. He will really flip if he finds out your
up here," he said, and grinned as Remy sat down beside him.
"I 'ad to get out of dere. 'E was drivin' me
nuts, an' tryin' to use me as a pin cushion. What 'bout you? You might 'ave
been paroled dis mornin', but if Hank finds out you been up here he
won't be happy 'bout dat."
"I needed to be alone for a while, to think. And
what Hank doesn't know won't hurt him," Scott said. The two men sat
in awkward silence as they watched the sun slowly set.
"I lied to her." Scott said after what
seemed like an eternity, but was actually only a few minutes. He was
surprised that he'd just said that aloud. He rarely opened up to anyone
about things like that, and never to Remy. He and Remy had never been
close. The two rarely talked about anything that wasn't somehow related
to the X-Men. He wasn't sure why he was about to open up to Remy now. He
just knew he needed to talk to someone, and Remy was here now.
"Uhh ... who you lied to," Remy asked in
shock and confusion. He wasn't sure if Scott was talking to him, or just
didn't realize he was thinking out loud.
"Jean," He answered, then paused for a
second. "When she told me about the baby, I told her I was nothing
but happy. I acted like I was so sure everything would be fine. I'm not.
I'm scared, Remy. You know, I've faced
giant mutant killing sentinels, a thousand year old maniac mutant with a
twisted view of how the world should be and wants to rule it, a magnetic
mutant as full of hate for normal humans as they are for us, and more
other crazy stuff then most men twice my age have ever faced or will.
And none of that scares me as much as the knowledge that I'm going to be
a father ... again." Scott was quiet again as he watched the sky.
He didn't really expect Remy to say anything. He wondered what possessed
him to say anything in the first place.
Remy was silent for a moment, still shocked and
somewhat confused that Scott just confided in him, and called him by his
first name. *I've been here all dis time an' dis the first time he
didn't call me Gambit or LeBeau.* Remy pushed that thought aside and
focused on what Scott said. He turned to Scott and placed his good hand
on Scott's shoulder again. Then spoke from the heart.
"I know I wasn' 'round when all that stuff went
down wit' Nate, but I 'eard 'bout most of it from de ot'ers. Dey say you
did everyt'ing you could to help your boy. From what I've seen since I
been here, I believe dem. Maybe
you'd ne'er win father of de year, but even a blind man can see how much
you love your son. Even if you won't tell him dat. You do your best to
protect de people you care about, Scott," Remy said. He was silent
for a moment as he remembered how fiercely Scott had protected Siku
during Creed and Marko's "visit". Remy had heard Scott say the
phrase, "X-Men don't kill", more times then he cared to count.
He'd been surprised that day, to realize that Scott would not have
hesitated to kill either of the intruders if he though they'd try to
hurt Siku. There had been an intense hatred and anger on Scott's face
that Remy had never seen before. *How many of de ot'ers caught it?"
He wondered absently to himself. "I'm sure you'll be a good
Scott said nothing at first, still surprised at their
openness with each other and unsure of what to say. "Thanks,"
he said finally, then he began to chuckle.
"What's so funny, mon ami," Remy asked,
"Jean and Hank got back a few minutes ago. She
just informed me that Hank, despite her best efforts, just found out
you're not in the med-lab. You'd better get down there now before he
realizes where you are."
The awkwardness that seemed to hang in the air
dessipitated as Remy chuckled. "Maybe you should come down
"Yeah, in a few minutes."
"OK, but if Hank find out you're up here, Remy
not be de only one to suffer his wrath," Remy teased. He then
turned and walked back down to the med-lab. He smiled as he left,
feeling for the first time that he truly belonged here.
Scott watched Remy leave then turned back to the
setting sun. As he stared at the beautiful colors spreading along the
horizon, he thought about what had just happened. *I guess I really
misjudged him. Maybe because I was too damn stubborn to realize the
truth, * Scott thought to himself. * He's not as flippant as he acts. *
Scott stood and stretched as the sun finally finished its descent. As he
walked back inside he vowed to himself never to
judge anyone so quickly again, based solely on his first impression.
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
x x x x x x x x x x x
Rogue stretched and yawned as she slowly opened her
eyes. She had gone back to sit with Remy after taking a nap the previous
afternoon. He hadn't woken up again that night, but she'd stayed with
him. He'd shooed her off again a few hours ago, and she had to admit,
the nap felt good. She walked to the bathroom and stripped. Once in the
shower she turned on the water and revelled in its warmth, letting her
thoughts drift. She'd been so relieved when Remy had first woken up
yesterday morning. She'd cursed herself for treating Gambit so badly,
for ever doubting his loyalty to the X-Men. Rogue finished her shower
quickly and got dressed. She walked down the hall with renewed hope and
confidence as she headed down the stairs to the Professor's office.
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
x x x x x x x x x x x
Xavier sat quietly at his desk going over the reports
Senator Williams had sent. The hostility there seemed to have settled
down a bit in the four days since he and the others had returned. News
of what had happened after
the rally in Central Park had spread like wildfire throughout the
country. Many states also reported a decrease, if only a slight one, in
the hostility against mutants. The Professor knew it was only a small
step, a very small step. *But at least, * the Professor thought to
himself, * it is a start. A step in the right direction. *
He knew Rogue was coming before she even reached his
door and had a chance to knock. He had a good idea what she wanted and
smiled. He had been waiting for her to take this next step for some time
"Come in Rogue," he said, just as she
reached the door and knocked. He watched silently as she took a deep
breath and walked up to his desk with so much more confidence and
determination then she'd had when she first came to the mansion.
"What would you like to talk about, Rogue," Xavier asked, his
smile growing as she said what he'd expected.
Rogue took one more deep breath, then answered.
"Professor, if you still think ya can ... Ah'd like ya ta help me
learn ta control mah powers."
The television screen
flickers as the man holding the remote flips through the channels. He
stops when he sees the program he's been looking for. The screen shows a
news room -- a man and a woman sit at a desk. They both look up as the
"Two months ago we
brought you the story of Joshua Lee Calvin, a young man whose life was
torn apart when his four and-a-half year old daughter, who was a mutant,
was kidnapped, tortured, and killed," the woman
anchor says, then looks at the man beside her.
"That's right, Kate.
According to Mister Calvin, his daughter Sarah accidentally bumped into
another child in her Pre-K class. Sarah apologized to the other girl.
The other girl called her a freak and pushed her to the
floor. It is speculated that the girl's father, Jackson Morgan, than
conspired with Michael Moore, Samuel James Lennon, and Shane Michael
Lennon, to kidnap young Sarah Calvin. All four suspects were arrested
subsequently released. District Attorney Larry Ross cited
insufficient evidence as the reason for the dismissal.
The camera focuses back on
the woman anchor. "We now go to Sue Ling at the New York City
Police Station for an update." The screen switches again and shows
a young Asian women standing in front of a police department.
"Because of unexpected
public outcry, the case was reopened shortly after Mister Calvin's
speech at the FOH rally. Arrest warrants were issued for the four
suspects. Just before they left the police station, an unexpected
development arose. They received an anonymous phone call reporting an
accident that just occurred in an alley by First Street and Lincoln
Boulevard. The description of the van matched the van used in the Calvin
case. When police arrived, they found the van turned on its side,
shattered glass from the windows all around the vehicle. The four men
all had blood alcohol levels far above the legal limit. They sustained
minor injuries. We
haven't yet been allowed to talk to the men, nor have their statements
been made public. I was, however, able to talk to the officer in charge
of the case."
The scene switches once
again, this time to the alley where the accident occurred. There are
small white letters across the top right corner of the screen saying:
Recorded Earlier Today. The same reporter is approaching an officer at
the scene. The audio cuts in just as the conversation begins.
"How did you learn of
the suspect's whereabouts, Sergeant Peters?" the reporter asks.
"At approximately seven
P.M. we received a phone call from a man saying a van had just flipped
in an alley way. The caller claimed he recognized the van and the men in
it from earlier news coverage on the Calvin kidnapping. When we arrived
at the scene the four men were sitting in the alley. They claimed to see
monsters, one with one long red eye, one with red on black eyes, one
with blue fur, and one with metal claws. They claim these creatures
roughed them up a bit and threatened to kill them if they tried to leave
"What was your reaction
to this, Sergant Peters?"
"All three men reeked of
alcohol. We deduced that the men had been drinking heavily. They somehow
lost control of the van. It flipped onto its side and skidded into the
"Were there any
"Two women say they saw
the van lose control and skid into the alley. They say they saw only the
four men come out of the van. The alley was dark and they couldn't see
clearly, but both women are sure the alley was empty."
The scene switches back to
the police station.
"The suspects were taken
to County General hospital. They were treated for minor injuries and
released into police custody. The driver of the van is being charged
with drunk driving. The other three men are charged
with public drunkeness (being drunk in public)."
The reporter pauses and the
anchor woman's voice is heard. "Sue, what penalties are the DA
"If convicted of the
drunk driving charge, Mister Moore faces a mandatory six month loss of
his license and up to thirty-five hundred dollars in fines and legal
The other three face five hundred dollars in fines and one
month of community service. However, because of the serverity of the
other crimes, it is highly unlikely the DA with persue the drunk driving
and public drunkeness
charges. He, most likely, will focus on the other charges which carry
much stiffer penalties.
All four men are being
charged with kidnapping, child endangerment, and child abuse. Mister
Morgan, believed to have dealt the killing blow, is also being charged
with first degree murder. While the other three men are charged with
conspiracy to commit murder. Each of the men face life in prison without
parole. The DA says, because of the brutality of the attack and murder,
he is considering requesting the death penalty. Even if the men are
given the death penalty, it is unlikely they will ever be
"Why is that?" The
male anchor asks.
"Because, Adam, there
are currently twenty inmates on Death Row in New York prisons. One of
the inmates has been on Death Row for eighteen years. The state of New
York has not carried out a death sentence since the infamous Martin
Quinn was electrocuted in 1952. Reporting live from the New York City
Police Department, this Sue Ling of Channel Six WKYX New York."
The screen now switches back
to the news room. "Well, Adam, it's good to see that there will
finally be justice for little Sarah Calvin and her family."
"Yes, it is, Kate. In
related news, District Attorney Albert Ross officially resigned this
morning stating heath reasons. Sources say Mister Ross was actually
given a choice to resign or be fired because of his poor handling of the
Calvin case. Assistant District Attorney Marian Webb will handle the
case untill a new District attorney is elected." The man is quiet
as he and the woman shuffle some papers around.
Then the women begins to
speak. "In other news ..."
The screen goes dark as the
man with the remote turns the television off. While he doesn't condone
what was done to the four men (and he's surprised by one of his former
student's involvement) the actions taken don't
upset him either. After all, none of them were seriously injured and
there was no damage to private property. He smiles as he wheels himself
out of the room. He doesn't kid himself. He knows the road to peace is
still a long and hard one. But these arrests are another small step
towards the realization of his dream.
End ... for now