Author's Note: This is a depressing (heh, like I write anything else with these) version of a What If? For issue 16 of Excalibur with Anjulie and everything. Enjoy the sadness, folks!


Anjulie had won.

The life force from the outlanders had fueled her master to the point where it would be years before he asked to take more of the world's primal life force.

Of course, there was that redheaded woman who had gotten away, but she would be found and dealt with in time. What could she do anyway? All of her friends were dead and gone, and the little machine was turned into scrap metal.

Well, most of them were dead and gone anyway. There was the one called Nightcrawler... ***
Kurt lay on his mistresses silk cushions, where he was supposed to stay at all times until she told him otherwise. He was lying on his side, staring at a blank wall with no emotion, his tail laying motionless.

Anjulie had used powerful magic on him, filling his mind with nothing but depressing images that left him nothing but a mind filled with endless despair, putting him in her complete control permanently.

If one were to run their hand down his back gently, they would find that under the fur there were great welts covering his back from where Anjulie beat him with her scepter.

As his bowl of food was placed in front of him, Kurt didn't even blink, still staring at the wall. Only his tail lifted faintly, indicating that he was still alive. Slowly, he turned his head so that his chin rested on the cushion, and he looked at the slushy slop in the golden bowl with the same expression as he did with the wall.

Kurt was unable to show any emotions anymore, even when Anjulie was using him for her sex toy. His once glowing yellow eyes were dull, and all of their playfulness and knowledge were gone now.

There was a solid gold collar and chain around his neck. Sometimes, she took him on walks where he would walk on all floors, the ridicule of those who knew to laugh when Anjulie wanted them to. More than once, she would suddenly pull up on the chain, leaving him with the choice to either get onto his two feet in a hurry or strangle to death on the floor.

Where was the great outlander warrior Nightcrawler now? Where was the man who had dared to try and destroy Anjulie and her High Lord and Master?

The food looked kind of like the dog food that came in the can with its own gravy all ready in it. It was mostly made up of discarded meat from Anjulie's meals, added with a few pieces of animal organs that had gone bad after a long while in the freezer room.

Kurt leaned forward and he slowly started to eat, looking like a dog with some of the brown juice smearing all over his mouth.

When the food was all gone, Kurt poked the inside of the bowl with the tip of his tail lazily, looking to see if there were any scraps left to eat. When he was satisfied that there wasn't any, he moved back onto the cushions and he lay on his stomach, using one arm to rest his head on.

He didn't move when he heard someone walking up. He closed his eyes and shifted slowly, pushing himself onto his hands and knees.

"Oh my God..."

At one point, the voice might have been familiar to him, but his mind was blank, leaving him with nothing but that it was a woman speaking. He turned his head slowly, looking at the red headed woman standing in the door as he sat back on his haunches.

Rachel couldn't believe what she was seeing. She was looking at Kurt, naked and with a golden collar around his neck complete with a chain for a leash. His mouth area was smeared with something she didn't even think was food.

"What did she do to you?" she asked, walking up and touching his arm lightly. Kurt flinched away from her, going down on all fours as he started to crawl away from her, his tail tucking between his legs.

"Kurt, don't you remember me?" she asked, staying where she was. "It's me, Rachel! Don't you know that?" Kurt was pressed up in the corner, looking at Rachel blankly.

"You don't know that..." Rachel whispered. She swore softly, placing her hands on her hips. "She did something to your mind didn't she? I wish I had my powers..." She slowly walked up to Kurt and he flinched away, his face emotionless but his body trembling as she rested a hand on his arm and held on lightly.

"Kurt, try to remember me! We can't waste time here!" Rachel said. "I have a hideout for us! We can hide in there for a while and then..."

"Nein." Kurt whispered softly, shaking his head from a slow pace to a wild fury. "Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein. Nein!" Rachel let go of his arm, looking at him in surprise.

"Kurt?" she tried.

"Nein! I...I nein gutt nein more..." Kurt said, starting to sway side to side. "Everyone.... dead und gone... Du the others." Kurt wiped his mouth with the back of his arm, his face still as blank as ever.

Sometimes, he was haunted with dreams of his old friends, covered in blood with pieces of their bodies either chewed or melted off. Rachel was just a nicer looking illusion to him.

Rachel couldn't stand it anymore. Grabbing the chain, she yanked on it, forcing Kurt to stand up.

"I'm sorry to do this," she said, trying to lead him to the door, "but you're not leaving me any choices with this!" Kurt dug his feet into the carpet, staying where he was stubbornly, despite the fact that the collar was starting to choke him badly.

"Nein..." he said simply.

"Kurt, please let me help you!" Rachel said. "Maybe we can figure out a way to get back to our home soon! Trust me like you once did!" She backed up, trying to pull Kurt out of the room when she hit a vase and made it fall over, the fragile thing shattering on the floor.

"Shit!" she growled, letting go of the chain. Kurt immediately fell back down on the ground on all fours, his tail curling around his body slowly. As she heard guards running up to see what was the matter, Rachel took one last sad look at Kurt before she made a break for it.

Slowly, Kurt crawled back onto the cushions, going onto his side to stare at the wall. Tears were falling down his cheeks, but he didn't pay them any mind. He didn't even know why he was crying.

When Anjulie came in an hour later, she found one of her favorite vases lying shattered on the floor, and her toy on the cushions where he was supposed to be, staring at the wall.

Angrily, she lifted her scepter and struck him in the back, knocking him off and into the wall. He covered his head with his arms, his body trembling before his mistress.

"Did you knock over my vase?" she demanded, wielding her scepter angrily. "Did you move when I told you not to?!"

"Nein..." She struck him in the back, making him do nothing but jerk at the blow.

"Liar!" she shouted.

"Bird knocked over." Kurt said, keeping his arms over his head. Anjulie stopped beating him, taking a step back.

"A bird?" she asked. "What kind of bird?"

"Hot bird." Kurt mumbled. "With red hair..." Angrily, Anjulie turned to her guards and ordered them to start looking for the last outlander, and to kill on sight. Turning to Kurt, she put her scepter down and she crouched down beside him, cooing softly as she ran a hand down his arm, making him lower them slowly.

"She wanted to make you leave didn't she?" Anjulie asked, cupping Kurt's chin in one hand.

"Ja." Kurt nodded. "But Ich not go. Ich know she dead..." Anjulie nodded slowly, smiling at her obedient slave.

"That's right. All of your friends are dead and gone, Nightcrawler." She said; taking him by the chain and bringing him back to the cushions. "You have no one else to take care of you and love you, Nightcrawler." She repeated, casting another spell to strengthen her control on him as her dressed slipped off.

"You don't have anyone to be friends with you anymore... Except for me."