mgowriter's note: I am so late to this! I only saw the movie a few days ago on an plane ride back home, and loved the relationship between Logan and Charles. I hope you enjoy!

Conversations Inside a Metal Dome

Logan watched the steam escape from his breath as he stepped out into the cold desert night. He crossed the distance between the makeshift kitchen and the large metal holding tank slowly, his limp making it hard to balance the serving tray in his hands.

He opened the rusted metal hatch and stepped inside, shivering from the cold. A lone figure lay in a converted medical gurney in the middle of the tank. His body was completely covered by a thick comforter. The light from a single lamp illuminated a small section of the space, keeping everything else in the shadows.

With the teacup still steaming from its contents, Logan set the tray down at the table next to the bed. He turned up the settings on the nearby portable heater before leaning over the figure in the bed.

"Charles," he said softly, not wanting to wake the older man if he was asleep.

"Hmm?" Charles mumbled, turning his head slightly and opening his eyes.

"I brought you some tea."

He helped the older man sit up onto the bed, adjusting the pillow behind his head.

"How come you're not out driving?" Charles asked.

"Slow night," Logan replied, handing him the tea mug.

"Your leg is bothering you, isn't it?"

Logan chose not to answer. He reached underneath the bed and pulled out a second blanket that he draped over the comforter.

"I looked at the weather," he said. "It's supposed to warm up tomorrow. This'll be just for tonight." Satisfied with his work, he turned to leave.

"Wait, Logan," said Charles. "Sit. Have some tea with me."

Logan turned. "I only brought one cup."

Charles reached behind him at the bed stand and produced a second mug. "This one's my favorite, but Caliban likes to steal it so I keep it hidden," he said with a mischievous smile, while pouring half of the liquid into the second mug. He handed the original to Logan, who pulled up a chair next to the bed.

The two men sat silently for a minute, enjoying the warmth of the tea.

"I think I had a nightmare last night," said Charles, breaking the silence. "I was at the school. There was some sort of explosion, and a lot of people were hurt. I couldn't save them. I couldn't…"

"It was just a dream," said Logan, absently massaging the knot in his right leg.

Charles looked over at him. "You haven't been dreaming at all. You haven't been sleeping."

Logan sighed into his cup. "Look Charles, it's getting late…"

"Please," Charles implored. "Stay a little while longer."

Logan leaned back into the chair, this time looking up at the moonlight shining through the slits in the round metal ceiling above him.

"Your mind is burdened," said Charles. "I can feel it even though I can't read it."

"There are good dreams, too," he continued, before Logan could protest. "Let me show you what I mean." Charles reached out and touched his hand.

. . .

A vivid flash of a different reality instantly appeared in Logan's mind. He found himself standing, staring at a cloudless sky on a summer day. The sun warmed his skin and the flower blossoms perfumed his senses. The constant pain in his leg was gone.

A bell rang in the distance, causing him to turn his attention to the dozens of students pouring out from the large, wooden doors of a stone building.

He followed the crowd down a wide staircase to see a plaque that read "Xavier's School For Gifted Youngsters." The magnificent building stood before him, perfectly kept, before all the destruction he knew would come.

"There you are," a familiar voice said behind him. He turned slowly, disbelieving his ears. She was there, in front of him, her eyes looking into his. She was so real that he could reach out and touch her.

"Jean," he said in amazement.

"Come on or I'll be late for my afternoon class," she said, holding up a picnic basket for him to see. "We only have an hour for lunch."

Logan swallowed the lump in his throat.

"Come on," she said again, beckoning him to follow her. He trailed behind her until they reached a quiet spot in the well-manicured garden. She sat on the nearest bench and dug around in the basket until she found what she was looking for.

"Can you help me with this?" she asked, handing him an unopened bottle.

He reached out his hand…and as suddenly as the world appeared, it was ripped away as Charles' hand released from his.

. . .

"No," Logan said involuntarily, the shock of the two realities colliding at once. "Charles."

He looked over at the older man, who was panting heavily against the railing on the bed, struggling to catch his breath.

Charles looked up at him between gasps for air. "I'm sorry," he said with effort. "I held on for as long as I could."

Logan exhaled shakily, the images of another world still fresh in his mind. He forced in another breath, calmer this time, before placing a hand on Charles' arm. A few moments passed, and the older man finally relaxed as he caught his breath.

"That was irresponsible," he finally said as he stood and helped Charles lay back into bed. "It could've induced a seizure."

"I had to show you," said Charles. "You had to know what it felt like again to be around love. There is something in the shadows that will soon appear. You will have to make a choice. I know you'll make the right one."

Logan tucked the covers around the older man. He considered Charles' words for a second, before collecting himself and the tray he entered with.

"Goodnight Charles," he said as he turned towards the metal hatch. "I'll see you in the morning."