Chapter 1: Bitter

            Rogue dodged out of the way of Jean Grey and headed towards Kurt Wagner, "Kurt, head's up!" she screamed.

            Kurt watched Rogue pass the ball his direction, he headed for it, just as Evan Daniels cut him off, bouncing the ball out of his direction.

            "Evan! Over here!" Scott yelled, he held his hands up in the air.

            Evan dribbled the ball halfway across the outdoor basketball court, glanced left to right, at one side, Rogue was in the way of Scott, in the other, Kurt.  He tossed the ball, hoping it would reach Scott. 

            Kitty Pryde, who had been away off to the side rushed over and grabbed the ball before it had a chance to reach Scott, she tossed it over to Kurt.

            Kurt dribbled the ball over to the basket at the north side, and tossed it, it missed the basket by a few inches, he swore under his breath.

            Jean Grey caught it and tossed it towards Evan's direction, Rogue caught it, and began to dribble it over towards the basket to take a shot.

            Remy LeBeau came up at her side, knocked the ball out of her hands, spun around, and headed off to the other side of the court intent on making a shot.

            Rogue followed, anger welling up inside of her, she somehow managed to run in front of him, their eyes met, and Remy jumped to her side to throw the ball.  She leapt up into the air, forgetting about her powers and flying straight up, she grabbed onto the ball, and looked down at them all.

            "Rogue, that's like the fifth TIME today!" Evan said in dismay.

            "Sorry…" Rogue sighed, she tossed the ball down to Kitty, "It doesn't count, it was an accident…I swear," she put her hand on her heart, and brought herself down from the air gently.

            "This is the last time we let it slip, Rogue," Jean stated, she headed towards Kitty in an attempt to take the ball.

            Kitty tossed the ball to Kurt, Kurt tossed the ball back to Rogue's direction, "heads up!" he called back to her.

            Rogue caught the ball, Remy ran back in front of her, intent on stopping her, she turned around, looking for either Kitty or Kurt to take the ball.  Remy's arm brushing against her sleeved-arm as she bounced the ball down on the ground brought a rage in her, she didn't even want him touching her.  Instinctively, she threw her arm behind her, elbowing him right in the chest, he fell back to the ground.

            Remy landed hard on the ground, he pressed his hand to his chest, the same place where he still had a healing wound from being stabbed only two and a half weeks previously. 

            "Foul!" Scott called, "Rogue, what are you playing at."

            "Accident," Rogue lied, she took a breath, and held the ball under one arm, she glanced down at Remy smugly.

            "Did she hit your wound?" Scott asked.

            "I be fine," Remy assured, he winced in pain a little, "what doesn't kill you can only make you stronger – or so I'm told," He stated, he glanced at Rogue knowingly, quite aware it had not been an accident, but then, neither had his brushing his arm against hers been an accident, he'd wanted to rile her up.  He knew how she felt about him, he knew he intimidated her, and it was fun to see her fight back like a wild cat. 

            "Rogue, that was no accident, I saw that," Jean stated, she tucked a few sweat-tinged locks of red hair behind her ear.

            "He fouled first," Rogue muttered, "Anyway, I'm out, I'm sick of playing this game," she tossed the ball in Jean's direction.  "Have fun," she uttered, and left the outdoor court, heading towards the mansion.

            "I think I've had enough basketball for one day," Remy remarked, "See you," He stated and followed Rogue, catching up with her.  "Chere!"

            Rogue didn't even stop, she heard him call her Chere, but she continued to walk – if not a little faster. 

            He caught up with her, "I get the feeling you're still holding a grudge towards me," he stated quite casually.

            "You're very observant," Rogue stated, "you're also a pain in the ass, leave me alone, LeBeau," she tried to walk a little faster.

            "Everyone else in the Mansion gets along with me but you, why is that?" he asked in a very smooth tone, it almost sounded as if he were trying to be sexy.  It didn't work against Rogue. 

            "Why must you be so irritating?!" she demanded, "leave me alone!" she shrieked.

"You don't really want me to leave you alone," Remy continued to follow her,  "Know what I think?" he asked.

"I couldn't give a shit what you think, LeBeau," Rogue continued to walk, she dared not look at him.

"I think that you're scared of me," Remy remarked.

Rogue spun around, "if you think that then your head is up your ass, creep," she shoved him away from her, "I got more power than you'll ever know!" she took off her glove, "See this hand?" she asked, "This hand could destroy you – it could take everything away from you, your powers, your mind, your memory, and leave you a brain-dead loser like that so called 'Miss Marvel'," she remarked.

Remy just looked at her.

"If I wanted to, I could absorb your powers and find out what the hell you're up to…" Rogue bragged.

"If you did, you wouldn't like what you'd find, Cherie," Remy folded his arms, "I doubt you'd have the nerve to do it," he said, "You are nothing but a silly little girl," he frowned, "all talk and no action…"

"I'd have the nerve," Rogue stated.

"Fine, chere, then here…lemme make it easy on you…" he held his bare hand out to her.  "Come on then, I dare you…"

Rogue just looked at his bare hand, she considered it, she did want to see what was in his mind, his memories, a chance to find out maybe why he was on the X-Men's side now.  But she didn't want to use her powers again, she hadn't used them since the incident with Miss Marvel, and the thought that she might accidentally absorb the whole of Remy LeBeau didn't sit well with her.

Not that she cared about his well being, but she was afraid of what might happen to herself.  And the thought of having an older boy, testosterone driven and all, stuck in her head wasn't her idea of fun.

"Get your hand away from me," Rogue smacked his hand away with her gloved hand.

"Just as I thought," Remy gave a humble laugh.

"Keep the hell away from me," Rogue muttered, and with those words, she took to the sky and flew off.

            Remy LeBeau folded his arms, watching her fly off. "Yep, she's definitely still bitter."

            After getting away from Remy by flight, Rogue flew over the roof of the mansion and to the front of the mansion, she headed downwards intending on making a landing, unfortunately it didn't work out that way, she tumbled before landing and bounced along the asphalt roughly.

            "You need to work on those landings."

            Rogue turned, Logan was sitting on a nearby wall smoking a cigar.  "Yeah…I know…" she stood up, "its not as easy as it looks…" she dusted herself off, "taking off is easy…" she admitted.

            "You'll get the hang of it," Logan shrugged, "sooner or later…maybe not sooner," he looked at her.  "How's the basketball game going?"

            "I dunno, I left.  Got kinda annoying," Rogue shrugged.

            "Let me guess, LeBeau is ticking you off again?" Logan asked.

            "Good guess," Rogue sat down on the wall beside him.  "How'd you know?"

            "Well, when's he not ticking you off?" Logan pointed out.

            "Good point," Rogue sighed, "Wolvie, I swear, sometimes I just wanna kill him…"

            "And other times?" Logan took a long drag of the cigar.

            "Other times I just wish he'd never come here," Rogue sighed, "And it kills me that he just WON'T tell us why he's on our side now, that's the thing…if I knew, I'd probably be alright with it, but I don't like the way he's keeping us all in the dark…" she folded her arms.

            "Professor knows," Logan shrugged, "wouldn't tell me, Ororo or Hank…"

            Rogue sighed.

            "I even tried asking the Cajun myself, got no answer really, he just said it was something he didn't want to talk about," Logan stood up and dropped his cigar on the ground and stomped on it, "It can't stay a secret forever, eventually its going to come out in the open, I guess we have to wait and see…"

            Rogue chewed the inside of her cheek for a moment, "I never was good at waiting," she despaired.

            "Rogue, promise me you're not gonna do something stupid to try and find out what his secret is…" Logan looked at her.

            Rogue looked away from him.

            "Promise, damn it," Logan looked at her warningly.

            "I promises not to do something stupid to try and find out what his secret is," she stated to Logan, and silently to herself she thought, I'll just have to try and do something clever.