Disclaimer: Well, to keep with the theme of repetition, I guess I'll say it again – I don't own the X-Men!

A/N: Here we are, the beginning of the end…

Star-of-Chaos, Raven2687, PomegranateQueen,Sweety8587, loneraven, EviltwinAlix, xpoisonedxangelx,Dreamcatcher89, Lightspeed Suzuka, Rogue14, darkstorm5000,ThoseRainyDays, heartsyhawk, CajunBelle, PsychRomyChica,Lady Xiu Mei Phoenix, rage-girl-05, SickmindedSucker, perturbedpercy,EE's Skysong, skyangle2004, The Blood Runs, keebler-elmo,TheRealMai, Totally Obsessed47, siren, and xmengirlzrule – Hugs and kisses for all! Or, if you don't swing that way, I guess I can get Remy to fill in… Yum.

wildcardrose, flowerperson, TheDreamerLady, and Tsugath – I think the confrontation between Logan and Pietro will be a lot more satisfying if left to the imagination… Oh, just think of all the fun pain you can inflict! Bwa ha ha.

missy42 – Oh, cheese… Now that you mentioned it, I want some. The quotes are from some website I found, I just searched for ones about memory and used those that would go best with the chapter. They make me sound smarter!

Goddess Evie – Drool protector? Yes, that would do the trick! Wish I had one of those a long time ago though… You know, you almost convinced me to continue with the fic. Almost. Sadly, I'm following the movie's plot, sorry! Blame Charlie Kaufman.

Freak87 – The Prof doesn't have their actual memories, since they were totally wiped. All he has is his own memories of their memories, so that'd be pretty weird, transferring his recollections of them back into their heads – it's similar to what Kitty offered, it would only be from his point of view, you know?

Speck – Rhyming would've been fun (always is), but commenting on all the chapters is still appreciated! I feel loved.

SweetRevenge151 – Hmm, a preview for my birthday does sound like a great gift… November 2nd, I'll be waiting! ;-) I heard about that Cure special too – I checked out some footage on the web, since I don't get MTV. You didn't know they were British? You have much to learn, grasshopper. They're the pride of Crawley – not that it means anything to me, I have no idea where that is, other than somewhere in England. Speaking of the fabulous English, I'm off to see our favourite dinner jacket-clad chap on Tuesday… Squeal!

Katatonia – LAL,ONAA? Hah, that amuses me. Doesn't make for a very good acronym, does it? But yeah, liking to it is fine!

Sophie – Ahh, I feel the pain of essay writing, I've got one to do this weekend. Of course, my breaks for reading fics will most likely reverse the situation, and then I'll be writing the essay as breaks between the reading… It's a vicious cycle. Stupid procrastination.

Eileen Blazer – The book thing happened to you too? Woah! Clearly, it's some sort of conspiracy by evil book-snatching gnomes, those little buggers. Oh, so Remy was erased from your memories? You have my deepest sympathies. Wow, you'd brave an erupting volcano for me? That makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

demiducky25 – Hey, your slowness is okay, it happens to the best of us. One day I finally noticed that my living room walls were painted pink – turns out they had been like that for 5 years. Heh… Anyhoo, you really should see the movie, it's fabulous.

Calliann – Wow, you think my fic is better than the movie? That's high praise, at least from my point of view, since I absolutely loved the film – I bought it the day it came out, I'm obsessive! And by 'bought', I mean I made my mom pay for it. I love that pouty, scruffy puppy look Jim Carrey does. Aww…

Don't let me distract you with some pointless comments, read on!

Loved and Lost, or Never At All?

Chapter 23 – Blessed

"Blessed are the forgetful for they get the better even of their blunders." – Friedrich Nietzsche

Rogue hadn't been able to sleep at all. How could she, when her mind had kept her awake trying to take in everything she had learned? All that she had found out, in the short span of less than an hour, had turned her life upside down.

Maybe that was exaggerating a bit. It wasn't the end of the world, after all. But dammit, it was overwhelming, not to mention bizarre beyond belief, to suddenly be informed that you had loved somebody once and had them erased! So as far as Rogue was concerned, she felt she had the right – hell, even the expectation – to be dramatic.

All her debating had kept her tossing and turning restlessly in the dark, waiting for sleep that just wouldn't come. She had wanted to get some rest and think about everything in the morning, with a clear head and fresh new perspective, but that hadn't happened. Instead, she had stared at the blank ceiling for hours, contemplating and analyzing what she did or didn't feel, and assessing what actions she should or shouldn't take.

She had yet to come to a conclusion. She still didn't know what to do.

Rogue kept thinking about what she had with Pietro – or more specifically, what she thought she had had. Now she knew that there hadn't been anything at all. That hadn't been real, it was just another betrayal to add to the list. 'Yah'd think Ah'd be used to 'em by now,' she laughed bitterly to herself. She knew that they weren't Pietro's actions, they were Remy's, but she couldn't stop comparing them. However, there was really no comparison to be made, was there? Because it had always been Remy. Pietro didn't factor in here.

Okay, so that was one thing the girl knew for certain – she wanted nothing to do with Quicksilver. Except maybe to break his jaw... But that could come later. She was afraid of what she might rashly do if she saw him, so at the moment, she was hoping to avoid him for as long as possible. The real issue was what to do about Remy – he was the source of all her questions and uncertainty.

Apparently, she had loved him. Even though Kitty hadn't explicitly told her so, Rogue could tell from the photograph of them together. It was as clear as day, it shone through in their smiles, it lit up their eyes. But that was in the past, and she couldn't even remember it. It didn't matter now. Right?

She couldn't let that influence her – she didn't want to be with Remy because of what had been! If she wanted to be with him, it should be because of what she felt for him now. But the Southerner still wasn't quite sure what exactly that was. Did she only want to be with him because they had been together before? Was it due to that idea being planted in her head? Would she have wanted it regardless of their past being revealed?

This was far too complicated. Hell, she didn't even know if Remy wanted to be with her – if he didn't, she couldn't exactly blame him. He must have been as freaked out as she, learning all this… Granted, he had seemed genuine yesterday, when he asked her if he could help her through it, but that probably didn't mean what Rogue wanted it to. Or at least, what she thought she wanted it to… Damn, why couldn't she just sort out all her jumbled feelings?

She had thought that the Professor might be able to shed some light on a few things, which was why she skipped the morning Danger Room session and was currently standing outside his office. She hesitantly raised her hand to knock on the door, but it froze in midair. Did she really want to do that?

She wasn't quite sure how she felt about him right now. Logically, she knew she couldn't blame him – she had been the one to initiate the procedure, but still, she couldn't help but feel some resentment towards Xavier. It seemed like it all caused so much trouble. But then again, she couldn't judge that, could she? She had no idea what things would have been like if they hadn't worked out this way.

Shaking her head violently, Rogue pushed those thoughts out of her head. She couldn't change the past and she couldn't predict any alternate futures – all that mattered was the present, and presently she had some decisions to make. Ones that had to be made on her own – Xavier telling her what she was like before wouldn't, and shouldn't, matter… So the girl turned on her heel, and walked away down the hall. She could see him after she had figured everything out.

She supposed that the best thing to do would be to go and see Remy – maybe having him there, right in front of her, would help her realize what it was she felt. She hoped. It had better… So the Goth ran out of the mansion. It was easy to leave unnoticed, everybody was in the sub-levels training, which she was thankful for. She wanted to avoid them all, especially Kitty. As kind and supportive as the girl was being, she would only want to know what Rogue had decided, and she had no answer for that. She had no answers for anybody, which was why she was grateful that she didn't run into any of the Institute's inhabitants – what would she say to them, now knowing that they had been perpetrating a charade to her for months?

She desperately needed some caffeine in her system, maybe that would help her think. But deep down, there was another reason she began to head for Le Café Café – Remy would be there as well. How she knew was just another thing she couldn't explain…

Rogue walked into the establishment, heading straight for the counter – she would need her coffee to handle this. It was silly that such a trivial thing could help her, she knew that, but she needed all the support she could get. Only after the steaming mug was grasped firmly in her hands did she scan the room, and pick out Remy sitting at her back table. She could see him drumming his fingers anxiously on the tabletop, and her nerves hit her full-force.

Gripping her drink even tighter, she had to fight the urge to turn and run out of the building. No, running away from her problems was what brought her here in the first place, hadn't it? Commanding her feet to move, she started over towards the rear, and sat down in the chair across from the current source of all her confusion.

"Bonjour, chère," Remy greeted her with a warm smile, that worked at calming her down some. But not completely.

"Hi," Rogue replied quietly, shooting him a weak smile in return. Only when he turned his head slightly did she notice the dark purple bruise on his jaw. "Oh mah Gawd, Remy, what happened?" she cried out in surprise.

"De Wolverine happened," he winced.

"What? Why?"

"Don' t'ink he was too happy 'bout what I did t' y'."

She hadn't really given much thought to how the others would deal with this whole situation… Great, yet more for her to worry about. "Oh… An' yah're still breathin'?"

"'M here, ain't I?" he commented with a crooked grin.

Yes, he was, and that was odd. The fact that Logan let him go without a vicious pummelling amazed Rogue – that had to mean something, but once again, she was unsure of exactly what. Lifting her gloved hand, she brought it to Remy's face and lightly trailed the bruise with her fingers – he closed his eyes and ever so slightly leaned into her touch, but then she realized what she was doing and abruptly pulled away.

A deafening silence reigned. They both sat there, awkwardly, unsure of what to say. Finally, it was broken by the Cajun.

"Merde, dis is weird."

Rogue nodded slowly. "Yah got that right, swamp rat. Ah'm not sure what Ah should say…"

"Well, I know what y' mean. We're in de same boat here."

"So what are we gonna do about it?" she asked him unsurely, and held her breath. Maybe he had an answer to that question, that way she wouldn't have to come up with her own solution… But then why was she so apprehensive with hearing what he would say if she didn't already have one?

"Spent all last night t'inkin' 'bout dat," Remy chuckled, but then to her disappointment, skirted around the issue. "'S pretty funny, us meetin' de day after I erased y', henh?"

"Ah'd call it ironic."

"Actually, I was t'inkin' it might be somet'in' else."

"What?" she queried curiously. What was he getting at? She just wanted to know already!

"Mebbe it was fate," he said seriously.

Rogue blinked. Fate? So was he saying… "What are yah sayin'?"

"'M sayin' dat dere has t' be a reason we met again," he explained fervently. "'M normally not one t' believe in fate, cause I don' like t' t'ink dat we don't have control over what we do, but dis… It's gotta be a sign, Rogue. T'ink we'd be wrong t' ignore it."

"So… What, yah want to give a relationship a try?" she questioned incredulously, as her heart began to beat faster.

"Oui, chère, I do… We've been given a second chance, I t'ink we should take it!" Remy exclaimed, his eyes intensely boring into hers.

"What, yah've decided this already?" she faltered. "It's so soon, Ah mean, we just found all this out…"

"I know, an' I don' mean t' rush y' or scare y' off, but I know it's what I want. Don' worry, 's not like 'm not askin' y' t' marry me," he pointed out. "We'll be startin' at de beginnin', takin' it slow, an' we'll see where it leads us, henh?"

Rogue thought her heart would burst out of her chest at any second. He was telling the truth, she could feel it – it was obvious by staring into those dark pools he called eyes. He wanted a relationship with her…

Waiting for her reply must have made him even more nervous, because he grabbed her hand in his as he whispered, "Please, chère, give me a second chance. I know I probably ruined t'ings before, even though 'm not sure how, but lemme try again!"

His comments prompted the Southern girl's defeatist attitude to take hold, and doubts pervaded her thoughts. "How can we make this work, Remy?" she asked dubiously. "We don't even know how we wrecked it before, how can we stop it from happenin' again?"

"Well, mebbe we can!" Remy realized. "We could always ask y' friend Kitty, or de Professor what happened last time…"

That would help, but… What if it didn't? She frowned. She was afraid of what she might find out, she admitted. If it was enough for her to erase him before, what would it cause her to do now? "Ah dunno… Ah'm not really sure Ah even wanna know. It must've been bad, Ah don't wanna blame yah fo' somethin' we can't remember…"

"Dat's fine, chère, we don' have t'. Eit'er way, 'm willin' t' try," he replied bluntly.

"But why? Ah mean, we must've been hurt so badly to erase each other," Rogue pointed out dismally. "What if we're just settin' ourselves up fo' more pain?"

"Hey, we don't know if dat'll be what happens again!" the Cajun denied. "B'sides, I t'ink we'd be good f'r each ot'er."


"Oui. We compliment each ot'er in some ways, an' den in ot'er ways we're opposites, we balance out," he blurted out anxiously. "We're from de South, we're adopted, we had screwed up family lives… We're both mutants, y' absorb power an' I let it out… Y' keep people away, I draw dem in… 'M optimistic, y're pessimistic… Hell, even our eyes, chère, dey're opposites! We're alike in de ways dat we need t' be so we can relate t' each ot'er, an' we're diff'rent in de ways dat we need t' be so dat we can push each ot'er! We're a perfect balance, Rogue, dat has t' mean somet'in'."

She absorbed his words in amazement – she had just heard similar ones spoken just yesterday, but when Remy was the one saying them, she actually believed him. It was all true, everything he had said… But he still didn't know what he was getting in to, she realized fatalistically.

"Remy," she began again, voice unsteady. "Ah don't know what to say…"

"Say yes," he pleaded.

"Ah… We can't," she mumbled, bowing her head and withdrawing her hand from his. "Yah know, yah're actually a nice guy, but there's just too much standin' in th' way."

"Like what?"

"Mah powers-"

"Don' matter t' me," Remy finished for her, leaning across the table and placing a gloved finger underneath her chin, lifting her head up. "I jus' want you, chère, and yo' powers are a part o' y', I know dat. Dey're not scarin' me away. B'sides, in dat picture we saw, y' had control – y' can do it again, I know it."

Rogue wanted so desperately to believe him… Could she really gain (or regain) control?

He continued quickly, obviously worried, still attempting to convince her. "Rogue, fo'get about de past. Dere's not'in' we can do about dat. Just t'ink about now, an' what y' feel. 'M already fallin' f'r y', I have t' admit dat, an' it was startin' even befo' we learned about our past. Dat's gotta mean somet'in', us findin' each ot'er again – we've been blessed wit' anot'er chance, let's not let it go to waste, henh? I don't know what'll happen, dere ain't a guarantee, but dere never is – so why don' we just try again an' see where it goes?"

Rogue looked long and hard at the man sitting across from her, honesty and apprehension written all over his face. He wanted this so badly, he was willing to take this risk. The question was, was she? They had been in love, she knew that much. She also knew that love was the biggest risk of all – would she be able to take the plunge and try it once more?

- X -

As Remy sat there, waiting for Rogue's decision, his heart pounded like never before. He couldn't remember ever being so scared about anything in his life! He didn't care that he sounded pathetic and desperate, he was willing to go through that and put his heart out on the line if it meant she would say yes. It was a gambit, he knew that, but they were his specialty, after all.

The thief had spent all night debating it, almost unbelieving that he was willing to stick around after such a bomb had been dropped. That wasn't like him, he was sure. He should've high-tailed it out of town, but he didn't. He didn't want to, and that had to mean something.

Early this morning, he had gone to the Institute with the intent of discussing things with Xavier. That man would have been able to give him some answers, surely, but right before he was about to climb in through the window, Remy realized that he hadn't wanted any. It would be better to figure this out on his own first. But later, the two men would definitely be having a discussion…

So Remy went to the café – something told him that Rogue would be there, and he was right. Once he saw her walking towards him just now, his mind had been made up instantly. Or maybe it was his heart… Either way, what he had told her was true – he had sensed something special about her before, he had wanted to attempt a relationship previous to them finding out about their erased memories. The fact that he had asked Rogue out on a date should have tipped him off that there was something different about her, that something deeper had been going on – after all, he didn't go on "dates". Or at least, he couldn't remember ever doing so. He must have, with her…

Merde, he had to take his own advice and forget about that past. It was gone now, it would do him no good anymore. Although it certainly had helped him already – that revelation had only served to motivate him. He and Rogue had something special once, so they could have it again, he was sure of it.

Now if only she would answer…

Remy knew she was afraid. Hell, he was too – especially since he couldn't tell what she was thinking. His chère was wearing a mask, one that he had thought he could see through, but currently he couldn't for the life of him predict what she would say. His insides clenched when she finally opened her mouth and began to speak.

"Come with meh," Rogue said, getting up from the table.

That wasn't exactly the response he had been looking for… Gambit rose after her anyway, not about to let her get away. He followed her out of the café, opening the door for her, and walked beside her as they went down the street.

No words were spoken between them, and the silence made him even more fearful – why wouldn't she just say something? He longed for a sign, a smile, a nod of reassurance, some little gesture that could give him a clue of what was happening, but there was nothing.

Time seemed to stretch on forever, as it always did when one eagerly awaited something. As Remy strode beside her, their fingers brushed against each other's, and it sent a spark of warmth shooting up through his body. He wanted nothing more than to reach out and hold her hand, but he couldn't bring himself to do it. If Rogue pulled it away, then he would have his answer, and he didn't think he would be able to bear it. No, it was better to just march along and see where she would take him – if her response was a negative one, at least he could have as much time as possible with her. Damn, he didn't want to be thinking like that…

A few minutes later, the pair ended up at the gate of the Xavier Institute. The Cajun looked at his companion questioningly, but she simply punched in her security code and led him inside the grounds.

Instead of walking up the driveway, they cut through the grass. As Rogue led Remy over to her balcony, she finally spoke. "We're gonna go in this way, Ah don't want any questions from anybody just yet, okay?"

"Sure," he nodded, and took hope. Just yet? Did that mean that there would be a later for them?

Climbing up the trellis first, he extended a hand to help haul her up, and then chivalrously opened the door for her. When she walked inside, he heard an accented voice exclaim, "Rogue! Where have you been? You missed ze Danger Room session zis morning, everyone was worried!"

"Sorry, Kurt, Ah had somethin' Ah had to do," she told him, and then Remy then entered the room.

Before he could even react, Kurt launched himself at the Cajun, who once again found himself pinned to the wall.

"What are you doing here?!" the boy growled menacingly. "Why are you with Rogue?!"

"Kurt!" cried Rogue and Kitty simultaneously. "Put him down!"

"Put him down?" he shouted incredulously. "You want to defend him after all he has done to meine schwester (my sister)?"

"Kurt, he like, doesn't remember, remember?" Kitty pointed out as she tried to pull Nightcrawler away from his target.

"It doesn't matter! He shouldn't be anyvhere near her!"

"That's not fo' yah to decide," Rogue stated with a glare at her brother. "So let him go."

He opened his mouth to protest, but another fierce look from the feisty Southerner made him shut it once more. Glancing back towards Gambit, he removed his hands, but his narrowed eyes let Remy know that he was none too happy about it.

"So, I take it y' weren't too fond o' me, henh?" Remy joked lightly in a futile attempt to ease the tension in the room.

The other mutant bared his teeth, which looked much more threatening now that he had turned off his holographic form. "What gave you zat idea? I despise you!"

"That's like, putting it lightly," murmured Shadowcat, rolling her eyes.

"I hate you for what you did to Rogue! You broke her heart, you don't deserve her!" he continued to rant. "You don't deserve a chance to do it again!"

The Cajun frowned. "I don' plan to. I care about her, homme, 'm not gonna hurt her."

"Zat's what you said last time, and look what happened! I should teleport you to ze Antarctic and leave you there!"

"Kurt!" scolded Kitty, pulling him back. "This isn't any of your business!"

"Of course it is! I can't let Rogue make ze same mistake again!"

"Maybe it's mah mistake to make!" erupted Rogue in frustration, walking up to Kurt and angrily poking him in the chest. "Look, Ah appreciate yer concern, but this is mah decision, okay? Yah can't tell meh what to do, it's mah life an' mah feelin's, so back off!"

Wide-eyed with fear and shock, he simply nodded, not daring to say a word to incite more of the girl's rage.

"Good," she stated, much calmer. She then made her way over to the bed, picked up Pietro's backpack, and headed back to the balcony doors.

"Where are you going?" Kurt queried protectively, managing to summon the courage to speak up, yet with a healthy measure of trepidation.

"We have some things to sort out," Rogue stated in a tone that left no room for negotiation.

"But-" the elf began, only have a hand firmly clamped over his mouth by Kitty.

"Oh, hush, Kurt!" she reprimanded, and then smiled at the two Southerners. "Go on, you two. You like, totally need to talk."

"Thanks, Kit," Rogue nodded in acknowledgement, and walked outside.

Remy followed her again, both of them stopping at the edge of the balcony – they could hear Kurt begin to seethe inside the room once more.

"Zis is insane! How could zey meet again? Zat isn't supposed to happen!"

"Maybe it is, like, who are we to say?"

"Nein (no), he'll just hurt her again!"

He looked over at Rogue, hoping that she wouldn't be swayed by the boy's opinion, after all he had said to try and persuade her. She gave no indication of even hearing him – she simply vaulted over the railing and landed gracefully on the ground below.

"Yah comin'?" she called up to him, and set off walking across the lawn.

He jumped down after her, still as mystified as ever. "Where y' takin' me, chère?"

"Yah'll see," she replied cryptically, as she led him into the trees at the edge of the grounds.

They wove their way through a path, silent once again. Remy normally would have appreciated the scenery around him, with sunlight streaming through the canopy of leaves, but he was too tense. Instead, he focused on the girl in front of him, who in his opinion, was much more beautiful than the surrounding foliage. After a few minutes, they emerged in a grassy clearing, with a picturesque view of the lake below them.

Rogue stood there, looking around, and then finally took a deep breath and spoke. "This is mah thinkin' spot. Ah like to come here to be alone, sometimes…"

"Y' don' have t' be alone anymo', chère," he told her before he could assess what he had said, praying that comment wouldn't scare her, thinking he had come on too strong.

She stared at him with those deep green eyes, and simply said, "Ah know."

That didn't completely tell him what he wanted to know, and Remy couldn't take it anymore. "Chère? Please, de suspense is killin' me!" he begged.

"Sorry," she mumbled sheepishly, with a ghost of a smile. "Ah… Well…"

Biting her lip, unable to form the words, Rogue instead handed him the backpack with her mementos of him inside. He glanced at her, puzzled – what did this mean?

"Blow it up," was all she said.


"Use yer powers an' blow it all up," she elaborated.

"Are y' sure?" he enquired, baffled. "Dis is all de memories o' what we had…"

"Well, like yah said, Ah should fo'get about th' past – it doesn't matter anymo'. We can make new memories," Rogue told him, wringing her hands nervously. "Um, if yah want, that is…"

A huge grin broke out on Remy's face, and without needing to be told again, he charged the bag and threw it up in the air. He then stepped towards her and quickly picked her up in a giant hug, to which she shrieked in surprise. The bag exploded and tiny bits of paper and other materials rained down on them, but they hardly noticed – the Cajun had wrapped his arms strongly around her, twirling her around, and was pleased when she relaxed into his embrace.

When he pulled back, he was glad to find an identical grin mirrored on Rogue's face. It made her even more stunning, he thought, as he brushed some scraps from her hair.

"Dat wasn't very nice, y' know, keepin' me guessin' like dat," he teased.

"Ah'm sorry," she apologized, now running a hand through his hair to get the paper out. Dieu, that felt nice. "It's just… Well, Ah was scared, Ah guess."

"Me too, chère, me too. But dis is new f'r both of us, so we're in it toget'er. Let's just take it one day at a time, 'kay?"

"Okay," Rogue replied softly. "Maybe things'll turn out differently this time around…"

"I t'ink dey will," Remy declared confidently.

"Oh, really? An' what makes yah so sure?"

"Well, t'ings have changed. Dis all didn' happen last time, so dat'll change de outcome, right?"

With a pensive look on her face, Rogue could only respond with, "Ah guess we'll see, won't we?"

"Dat we will. 'M sure we'll have plenty o' people givin' us, uh, friendly hints," he remarked, thinking of all the threats he had received so far, and of the many more he was sure were still to come. Not that they would scare him away, of course.

Her expression turned to one of worry. "Oh shit, Ah wonder what everyone else'll say…"

"Dat don't matter," he squeezed her reassuringly.

"Ah know, but it'll pro'ly freak 'em out…"

"Let it!" he laughed. "It'll be pretty funny, henh?"

Rogue shook her head, tittering. "Ah honestly don't know how Ah managed to put up with yah fo' so long!"

"Must've been love, chère," he answered seriously.

She gaze darted up to his eyes, surprised that he had said it. "Must've been," she agreed in a whisper, unable to change the subject with a scathing retort. He was glad she didn't.

"Why don' we find out, den?" Remy smoothly proposed, taking her hand as they began to walk.

"An' what exactly did yah have in mind?"

"Well, I sure wouldn' mind a t'ird date, chère. Or a second t'ird date, as de case may be."

"Hey, Ah don't consider th' other two times dates!" Rogue huffed, but all in good humour.

"Den what were dey?" Merde, the femme had spirit… She was perfect for him.

"They were just 'meetings', remember?"

"Nah, I just said dat t' make y' mo' comfortable. I always considered dem dates."

"They were not dates!" she insisted, but the smile on her face took away from the irritation she was trying to project.

"Whatever y' say, chère," Remy chuckled, leading her out of the clearing. "Whatever y' say. How 'bout we finally have an official one den? What do y' wanna do? Y' up f'r some mo' coffee? Y' didn' finish yo' cup earlier."

"Mmm," she practically purred, forgetting her annoyance, and he did his best to control himself. "Caffeine is always a good idea, sugah."

'Sugah'? That was a nice change from 'swamp rat'… "So de way t' de Rogue's heart is t'rough coffee," Remy mused. "I'll have t' remember dat."

"This time, yah better."

- X -

Watching Rogue and Remy walk hand in hand from the window of his study, Charles Xavier smiled contentedly – it warmed his heart that the two had managed to work things out, overcoming obstacles that he knew were his fault. He was deeply remorseful for his mistake in erasing their memories, and regret had plagued him ever since. But now it felt like part of the heavy weight he carried ever since had been lifted – they were together again, and he marvelled at the fact that it had happened, that they had been able to conquer such uncertainty between them.

He knew that he would have to justify his actions to two understandably upset Southerners when they would eventually come to talk with him, and he accepted that. He only hoped he would be able to… But for now, he allowed himself to take pleasure in their happiness.

Beside him, his old friend did as well. "So they worked things out, eh?" Logan noted, leaning against the wall, an imperceptible smile on his stern face.

The Professor nodded. "It would appear so."

"Good. Let's make sure nobody screws it up this time."

Xavier winced internally, knowing that Wolverine's statement extended to him as well. "I don't think that will happen," he said, swearing to himself that he would never interfere with them again – he had learned his lesson. And hopefully, another person had as well. "Do I want to know what you did to Mr. Maximoff?"

The Canadian shrugged vaguely. "I dragged him to the ER, he won't be movin' for a while."

"Logan…" came the warning tone.

"Hey, he'll live. It's more than the punk deserves."

As much as he didn't agree with the man's method, Charles had to admire Logan's protectiveness – especially when it extended to the young Gothic girl. Deciding to simply acknowledge what the feral mutant had told him and move on, he changed the subject – it was time to wrap up the loose ends. "Logan, would you please gather the other students? It would be best to inform them of this latest development."

"Sure, Chuck," Wolverine grunted, heading out the door.

"Thank you."

Before he headed to what would surely be the last of those meetings, Xavier had one final thing to do. Moving to his desk, he picked up the phone and dialled a number. After three rings, a woman's voice answered.

"'Lo?" greeted a warm, pleasant tone.

"Ms. Baptiste? It's Charles Xavier again," he informed her.

He cringed when her voice turned cold. "Oh, what is it now? Did Remy decide he didn' like my cookin' anymo' an' had m' erased?"

"Actually, I just wanted to inform you not to expect him back in New Orleans any time soon…"

- X -

"'Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all." – Alfred, Lord Tennyson

- Fin -

Well, there you have it, it's over. I know it's opened-ended, but hey, I'm just following the movie's plot, and frankly, I rather like it – judging from their earlier repetition, it's a pretty good bet that Rogue and Remy will get their relationship back on track, just use your imagination (which is always fun…). I don't know if I'd exactly call it a happy ending – more bittersweet, I suppose. They didn't remember their love, but are starting it over. That's as good as it gets, people, I hope you'll be satisfied with it! Rogue and Remy are together, just like they're meant to be – gosh, should I have been worried that so many of you were wondering if I'd have them work things out? I mean, this is me, we're talking about! Romy till bitter end, my friends.

Anyhoo. I hope you enjoyed this fic, because I sure loved writing it. But don't fret, my loyal ishandahalfarianites – more will be on the way eventually. I've got a bunch of plot bunnies gnawing away at my brain, it's just a matter of finding time to put my ideas into words. Look for another fun one-shot or two coming in a month or so (I'll try to get it up after midterms and my impending breakdown), and then another full-fledged fic sometime after that. I'm really excited about that one. Five words: love triangle with a twist. Bwa ha ha!

The point is, reviews motivate me, they really do. In one final attempt at guilt tripping you all into writing me some, please tell me how I did in weaving this lovely little yarn! After all, it's the least you all can do, after I gave you pages upon pages of story, right? ;-) But really, I'd love to hear what you thought about it – and my sincerest thanks in advance. Just bring 'em on, quick like a bunny on crack!


- ish -