Disclaimer: I do not own, nor am I making any money from the X-Men characters. Thank you to Corrinth for the use of her character Dr. Ilehana Xavier. I do own Blaze, and appreciate authors not using her without asking.

A/N: Last chapter!!!! So you'd better all leave reviews this time, or I'll write another sequel!!!! Enjoy...


Bobby Drake leant over the pane of glass in front of him, trying not to think too hard about how far he would fall if it broke. Hastily he clipped the safety harness to the ornamental strut that crossed the top of the piece of glass on the roof of the department store. Slowly he leaned back, feeling more secure now. Taking a breath as the wind ruffled his hair, he placed a bare hand to the glass pane til he heard it crunch under his power. Carefully, not allowing a shard to drop, he gathered the ice-covered glass to him and placed them on the ledge besides him. This was it. One small job, and he could eat for the first time in weeks. He could look after himself.

"Hey there Iceman." A slightly amused female whispered behind him, making him start. "What you doing so high up in the world?"

"Blaze? How did you find me? I thought you were long gone..." He couldn't hide the surprise in his voice.

"The Professor sent us, obviously. Though you might appreciate a word with some more experienced thieves." A shadow behind Blaze's moved forward, Gambit here as well? He winked at Bobby.

"Mind if I take a look?" The Cajun asked, taking the safety harness from Bobby's hand and going to the hole where the glass pane had been. Going in head first, body straight until he was through the window frame, Gambit put all his weight on the rope before letting go and tumbling to stand upright on an ornate beam that crossed the shop, coat billowing.

"Show off." Muttered Blaze, but her voice was tinted with pride. She didn't look at Bobby as they both watched the Cajun taking a look around the shop. "What are you doing here Bobby? Who sent you to rob this place? Are you that broke and you didn't just come home?"

"I don't know the name of the man who sent me, but yeah, I'm that starved I didn't ask. Some street kid said the guy was recruiting mutants, and that it was good pay. And I can't go back..." Bobby choked a bit as he thought of the school, but with the ease of long practice he force it out of his mind.

"So now you turn thief? You sure you've thought this through? What if you trip an alarm? How many getaway routes do you have sussed out? What if the police corner you? Would you use your power on them if it meant getting away? Could you live with yourself if you killed a man, especially when you were in the wrong? What about the shop workers? How will what you do affect them tomorrow?" Blaze didn't patronise him, for which he was grateful. She just presented the questions to him as she would think about them herself, kind of a checklist.

"You and Gambit did it." He still couldn't keep the slight spoilt child aspect out of his voice. "You live with yourselves."

"But we've both done things we will never forgive ourselves for, and no I wont give any examples." She met his eyes. "Look Bobby, you want to do this, fine. Gambit and I are only here to make sure you know what you are getting into. But there is a man back at that mansion who wants nothing but the best for you, the best exam results this summer, to pay you through university, maybe even offer you a job as a teacher in a few years. You think Remy and I would have been thieves if we'd had chances like that?"

"I can't go back while Rogue's still there." Bobby couldn't hide the truth from himself anymore.

"I know she broke your heart Bobby," Blaze spoke gently, not wanting to offend but this needed to be said. "But it's not the end of the world unless you let it be. Don't let her ruin your life."

Before Bobby could reply to that, Gambit reappeared and lifted himself easily out of the window frame. "Dis a thieves guild trial if ever I seen one. Gives me shivers jus' thinkin' one of them creeps round here watchin' us. Let get out of here, Chere, you comin' Bobby?"

"Alright," Iceman sighed heavily, not sure if he was doing the right thing. He had no desire to become a thieves guild minion. "If we can stop by a takeaway on the way?"

Blaze laughed. "Not a problem! Have you ever known me pass up on food?"


"Oh, poor Electra... You know I never thought I'd say that out loud." Blaze and Gambit stood in the gazebo in the far corner of the Xavier mansion's grounds, watching the early spring night close in around them.

"I didn't think I'd be the one to take her deathbed confession, either..." Gambit ran his fingers through his mop of hair, wondering whether or not to tell Blaze the truth.

"Anything juicy?" Blaze teased gently. Since the episode on the White House lawn, any telepathic tendencies she'd had had been seared out of her. That included her so-called-bond with Gambit, the bond that Ilehana had now diagnosed as a side-effect of the DNA specific virus Gareth King had used on Blaze to give her powers that were not her own in the first place. She hated feeling so separate from Remy. Kurt had been the only one to come up with a different explanation for the link and its disappearance. The blue elf seemed to believe the link was truly mystical, even spiritual. He was convinced its entire purpose had been to let Gambit save so many lives in Washington, now its function was complete; there was no reason for it to remain. Blaze thought it was a much nicer idea than Ilehana's.

"It was her," Remy began, knowing link or no Blaze could get him to tell her anything if she set her heart to it. Best not to have secrets to hide. "It was Electra who set Jacobi on us both, Electra tried to have you killed, Electra put us through all dis..." He sighed heavily.

"Why?" Blaze asked, looking up at her tall friend as he stared out over the lawn into the darkness.

"Coz I broke her heart." Blaze couldn't help but smile at him; he looked so depressed about it all. Did he regret all that had brought them to the mansion, to the X-men, so much? Or did he rue what might have happened to them if Electra had just disappeared as she was supposed to? Blaze tried to cheer him up with another tease.

"Yeah, well you always did have crummy taste in girls." Remy finally turned and looked down at Blaze, a small smile creeping into the corners of his eyes. Carefully he wrapped his muscular arms around Blaze and pulled her close.

"You sure about that, Chere?" He whispered, before kissing her soundly.

**The End**