X-Men Evolution is a trademarked product from Marvel, all the characters are owned by Marvel and not me. This is a work of fiction based off of said series. I make no money off this, yadda yadda yah.

"In The Garage" - by Val Shrum (kiyonekatz at yahoo dot com)

Chapter 1


The parking lot was packed at Bayville High. There was a lot of hustle and bustle, kids in their cars rushing to get back to their home to finish out the day. A dark haired boy with longish hair sat in the drivers side of an open roofed Jeep. His jeep. The radio blared out some hard rock styled music as his chair was leaned back and he stared up into the sky. He just didn't have the overwhelming urge to go back to the Brotherhood boarding house. He just wanted to relax in relative peace and quiet.

A familiar blond girl leaned over the door to smile at him, "Lance, why're you hanging around this boring place? I'm hitching a ride back with you, let's go."

"Go play in traffic, Tabitha." He sneered. "I think you've gotten enough rides out of my jeep, thanks. I'm not in the mood, today."

"Didn't steal enough lunch money for gas today?" She taunted.

"Didn't I already tell you to get lost?" Lance replied. He glared at the girl.

Tabitha finally let out an annoyed growl, walking away from the vehicle, "Well you're off my Christmas Card list."

"Thank you, come again." He waved goodbye in the direction Tabitha wandered off to. He closed his eyes. Lance didn't care much for the attitude Tabitha threw around.

Only the sounds of cars leaving and the blaring radio were in the air. To Lance, it was sweet music all around.

"So this is where you hide? Out in the open?" Asked a young, female voice.

Lance opened one eye to view who the voice was. Not that he really needed confirmation, he knew it belonged to the one and only girl known as Kitty Pryde. He half-smiled to the brunette, "Who said I was hiding?" He reached down to adjust his seat back to a 'sitting' position. "Don't you have a club or something?"

"Cancelled. Teacher was sick today." She leaned against the car door, "I take it you're afternoon looks pretty darn open too, huh?"

"Are you mistaking me for someone who cares about extra-curricular activities that look good on college transcripts?" He raised an eyebrow.

Kitty shrugged, "Well, you WERE just sitting in a parking lot not goin' anywhere... just took a guess." She looked up at him, "So, like I was asking, you're free?"

"What do you think?"

Kitty didn't answer. She knew the answer, and his tone was the answer. She walked around the jeep and got into the passenger side seat. She buckled her seatbelt and set her bag on the floor board next to her feet. "I'm so up for pizza. I'll spot."

"Sounds like a plan to me." He adjusted his seat forward and turned the ignition. Lance smiled over at the girl, then turned up the radio just slightly and pulled out of the parking lot to find the closest pizza joint to them - down at the local pizzeria, "Pizza Bonanza".

Lance pulled into the parking lot and turned off the jeep. He got out and walked over to Kitty's side, opening the door almost gallantly. "For you?" He smirked.

Kitty laughed, "Oh, such the gentleman." She gathered her bag up. "You know, you don't have to act that way around me. You can just be normal." She hopped out and stood on the pavement next to Lance.

"I know, Kitty. It's not completely beyond me to be.. nice, you know." He had to search for the word. Almost like he didn't believe what he was saying.

"Ooh yeah, bad boy Lance." She poked him in the chest playfully, then reached down, grabbing his hand as she lead him into the pizzeria.

They were seated at a two person booth. It had a miniature juke-box shaped cd-request vending machine sitting on the table. Kitty's eyes lit up as she started to look through the listings. A waitress approached the table and took their drink orders. Lance leaned in close, reading some of the song titles with her.

"That's a good song, pick it." He mused.

"What? No way, Lance." She smiled, "It's my quarter." She made a face, "Man though, this place has such the outdated track list."

"Tell me about it. I haven't heard that song in at least five years." He pointed at another title, "One hit wonders."

"Sometimes that's all it takes." Kitty commented, "Like you know, how's it go... from that play. The guy sings about the one song he needs to write."

"Don't pretend you don't know the name, Kitty. That's 'One Song Glory' from RENT. I lent you that CD a few months ago. I sometimes even hear you humming 'La Vie Boheme' occasionally."

"I'd probably remember it better if we could make it to the city to SEE it." She teased.

"With you learning to save the world, who has time for broadway musicals?" Lance leaned back, taking a sip from his drink that had just been delivered to the table.

"Hey now, that hurt. I have a normal life, really." Kitty made a face like she was pouting, "We would just need to make the plan ahead of time, is all." She lifted her own drink to take a sip. The waitress returned to the table and took their pizza order.

"Sorry Kitty, I didn't mean it that way." He commented. "It wouldn't hurt if you at least acted interested in some of the things I like."

"What's that supposed to mean?" She leaned back, "I liked it, isn't that enough?"

"It's not about the cd." Lance glanced over to the jukebox thing, and put in a quarter himself, selecting a song or two. Kitty made a face. "See? Like that." He added.

"Sorry, sorry." She waved a hand. Kitty looked at the songlist, "Sometimes I think to myself how we really don't have very many interests. To... you know... relate to... together."

Kitty looked up into his dark brown eyes. She stammered nervously, "I mean... like... it's not that big OF a deal, just it reminds me how different we are sometimes."

"You're right. The good girl and the bad boy." He added his own insight, "I never thought I'd see it, myself."

Kitty leaned over the table and pushed Lance playfully, on his shoulder. "Shut up!" She smiled.

"Hey!" Lance held up his hands defensively, "Don't go all Shadowcat on me."

"Maybe you'd like that." She looked up as the pizza arrives. "Fantastic! I'm starving. I totally skipped lunch today to study for a test. Remind me never to do that again."

"Different worlds, Kitty-Kat. Different worlds." Lance grabbed a slice and started to eat.

Kitty sighed and commented, "Can't we just... like... enjoy the moment? Just for once?"

Lance nodded. There was a bit of truth to it. They weren't exactly a perfect fit. He idly thought to himself, '... I wonder what we see in each other.' Then Lance looked over at Kitty as she gave him a bit of a knowing smile. 'She sees something. Yeah Lance, keep this up and you'll be single by the end of the week. Again.' He shrugged.

"You know, I just had the craziest idea." Kitty spoke up.

Lance paused, slice in hand, about to bite, "Uh... what?"

"We... pack this up, rent a movie, and head back to your place, sound good? I can call the Institute to let them know I'll be out late. Cool?"

"Whoa, did you just ask me out on a date?" He stared, incredulously.

"... aren't we already ON a date?" She emphasised 'on' a bit.

"I mean..." He paused, "You do realize you're asking to go back to the Brotherhood house, right? It's not exactly... the friendliest... or cleanest place to be. I'd almost opt for sweating it out with the X-Geeks."

"Oh c'mon, Lance. I've been there a gazillion times. It's not like that big of a deal." She rolled her eyes.

He nodded. After some thought, "Okay. Sure. Let's get a to-go box."

Kitty returned the nod with a smile. "Now you're talkin'. Let's go."