(Author's notes are long, feel free to skip.)

*** Author's Notes: Toad's always been kind of intresting, but always just a bit too annoying for me to get into. Then I watched the X-men movie again the other night and couldn't help but noticing how cool he was in the movie. His character was the only real smart alec aside from Wolverine, and that it came across with all of, what, three lines at most was impressive. I also like the bit of British punk I saw in him, as opposed to the ghetto-boy from Evo. that I'm used to, and who couldn't like those big, dark eyes. I felt it a shame that he was eliminated before what could have been an intresting character got developed. Soo.....I felt the need to play. Some excuses -- I don't know much about New York, being a very Southern girl myself (yes, yes, I should have done my homework. sorry). I somehow doubt that people are allowed to boat in the harbor around the statue of Liberty, but it worked for the story. Also, I did look up a bit about treating electrical burns, but let's just attribute any kind of medical things to the miracle of fiction, shall we? Finally, if you just want to get to the Toad-y goodness, just read the last para. Pleeeease stick with me. It'll be good. Promise!)

End Author's Notes


"Gabby, for the love of God, get out on this deck and enjoy some sun!"

"Yeah, not a cloud in the sky, cool breeze blowin'. Ya don't know what you're missing, girl!"

"You guys can go ahead and toast your skin to a nice, crispy bronze color. I'll take my well-earned geek-pale," came a voice from inside the cabin of the boat. On the deck, the tanners laughed.

"Oh, come on. Micheal's dad lent us the boat for the weekend, the least you can do is come out and enjoy some real weather," joked one girl, pulling her thick brown hair into a makeshift pony-tail so a muscular young man could smear tanning lotion on her back.

"She's just miffed because we dragged her away from her computor for two whole days, Angie," he chuckled.

"And my canvases, and my paints, and my projects!" whined Gabby in a pentulant voice.

"Oh, come on, Gab. Even I'm out here, and I'm hardly a sun-baby," insisted a pale, red-haired girl in sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat, judiciously applying SPF 100 lotion to her freckled skin.

"Mmph...it's so bright," Gabby muttered, emerging from the cabin and shading her eyes with a hand.

"It's called 'sunglasses,' sweetheart." Micheal tossed her a pair. "Now get over here and grease up."

"Right, right, right..."grumbled Gabby, climbing up on the deck. Micheal passed her the bottle and began slathering her back for her.

"It is such a nice day," said Zoey, the redhead. "An' look, you can see Lady Liberty in all her glory."

"Mm, yeah, nice." Gabby squinted towards the statue. "So, what went down last night? That thing on the news with all the colors and lights?"

"Don't you ever pay attention?" sighed Angie, picking up a magazine and settling onto a blanket.

"Not unless the anchor's cute, and I've yet to see that."

"Right on!" Gabby and Zoey hi-fived each other in agreement that cute boys were part of what made things worthwhile.

"They haven't said. I heard some people talking about mutant terrorist," said Micheal, squinting up at the blue sky. "Pisses me off to hear that. Just because something goes wrong, people blame it on mutants. Like that Senator Kelly."

"I hear ya," agreed Angie. It was common knowledge among the four that Micheal's old girlfriend had been a mutant, and was a darn decent person. There was a comfotable silence among the four friends. A three-day weekend away from college work and worries on a boat in the now-peaceful harbor, and what really was, in fact, a gorgeous day made them all happily drowzy.


"Uh, guys...?" Gabby squinched her eyes at the water and pointed. "What's that?"

"Huh?" Micheal rolled over and followed her finger. "Ah, pro'ly just some junk.

This is New York, sweetie. Everything's polluted."

"No..." Angie looked up from her magazine. "I think... it's a person!"

Micheal leapt up and dashed to the front of the boat.

"Oh my God, you're right!"

"So someone's swimming, what's the big deal?" yawned Gabby, stretching. The sun was making her sleepy.

"People don't swim in the Harbor, Gab!" Micheal moved to the back of the boat and cranked the engine on. "We're gonna find out if he's okay."

The boat gently putted to a stop near the figure. Micheal leaned over the rope railing.

"Hey, buddy, you okay?" he called. No response. "Hey! You! In the water!" Still nothing. He looked desperately at his friends. Angie sighed and took off her sunglasses.

"Here, put that rope in the water, I'll get him." With that, she dove into the water and breaststroked her way to the injured man. When she had reached him she turned around and yelled,"He's unconcious! He looks pretty badly hurt." She slipped an arm under him and began paddling back to the boat.

"Where'd she learn how to do that?" mused Micheal.

"Lifeguard training, 9th grade, 'member?" Gabby reminded him.

"Oh yeah..."

The four of them successfully managed to pull the unconcious man onto the deck and Angie began pumping the water from his lungs.

"He's not breathing..." She took a deep breath and, tilting his head back, breathed into his mouth, coming up and grimacing. "Oh, gah--it tastes like a sewer!" Screwing her courage, she bent down and continued, then turned his head to force more water out.

"My God, look at those burns," muttered Micheal, shaking his head in amazement. The man--more an older boy, about their age, really-- was covered in burn marks.

"Electric burns..." murmured Gabby. "Someone brought a dog in after it chewed a wire or something. Looked like this. I didn't know they turned green on a person."

"We should get him to a hospital," Zoey pointed out. Just then, the stranger turned his head and vomited up the last of the water. Still coughing harshly, he managed to croak out,

"No 'ospi'al..." before fainting again.


Oh my, whoever could it be?! Heheh...