Moving Forward

Author's Note: This vignete is based on Jeremy Harper's "Deathless" and takes place directly after "Pushing It". Some lines and referenced evemts of this vignette come directly from his work.


"I am tired. I think I shall retire for the night."

Peter stood up and stretched. He offered his hand to Kitty, pulling her off of the couch and into his arms.

"Would you mind terribly if I joined you?" she asked playfully. Peter chuckled.

"You are so impatient..." he murmured, bending down to meet her lips. "But the wolf hours can be lonely; one night soon, perhaps we will help each other make them pass."

"You're right, tonight's not the right time," she agreed as the couple walked out of the rec room, pausing at the foot of the stairs. "After all, you're practically falling asleep on me already. I was afraid I was going to have to carry you up to bed. And trust me, if we're going to do a exhausting nighttime activity, that is definitely not the one I'd choose."

"Really?" he asked, a mischievous glint in his ocean blue eyes. "I do not see what would be so exhausting about that. I can carry you to your room with ease," he boasted, throwing her onto his shoulder with one fluid motion and continuing up the stairs.

"Peter!" she yelled, slapping him on the back. "Piotr Nikolievitch Rasputin, put me down! Peter!" Kitty moaned, suppressing a giggle. "This is so not romantic," she complained. With a sigh the brunette X-Man gave in and let him continue to carry her to her room, figuring she may as well enjoy the view along the way.

"Here we are," Peter grinned, placing her down gently in front of her door. "See? Not exhausting in the least."

"How wonderful for you. Goodnight, Mr. Rasputin," Kitty said formally, her hand already resting on the doorknob.

"Do I not even get a kiss?"

"Uh-Unh," she pouted, folding her arms across her chest. "Now I'm mad at you."

"Well then it is only fair you let me apologize," he reasoned, taking her hands and guiding them up to his neck. Peter's strong arms encircled her waist, lifting her up to reach her mouth and kissing her deeply, his embrace full of passionate warmth.

"Apology accepted," she murmured as their lips broke apart, her eyes still closed. "Goodnight, Peter," Kitty said reluctantly, knowing if she didn't leave now she would lose all resolve to in the near future.

"Goodnight, Katya," he told her, watching her fade away through the door. "Sweet Dreams."


Kitty closed her eyes and leaned back against the door to catch her breath. A giddy wave of exhilaration coursed through her body as her mind replayed every one of the evening's events. She was just in the middle of remembering the feel of fire mingling with tenderness in Peter's goodnight kiss when a soft object bounced off her head, bringing her back into reality.

"Ow," she complained, bending down to get the projectile off the carpet. Kitty stared perplexedly at the crumpled, glossy magazine page she held in her hand before giving her roommate a questioning look.

The Russian sorceress was lying backwards across her comforter, her long, flaxen hair falling over the foot of the bed. She was already dressed in her favorite dark blue pajamas, cavalierly flipping through the pages of a magazine Kitty was certain Peter would not approve of his little snowflake reading. "I got you a present," Illyana said dryly, her eyes still fixed on the pages in front of her. Kitty stared back down at the balled up paper in silence. "Well aren't you going to open it?" she asked, tossing the magazine over her head to the floor below before sitting up and spinning around to perch herself at the edge of the bed.

Uncertainly, Kitty remove the paper to reveal a balled up strip of cotton fabric. "You got me used socks?" she asked incredulously.

"No, I got you a used sock," she corrected.

Kitty shook her head. "You are so weird."

"What? It's clean. Now all you have to do," she explained, getting up and taking the sock from her best friend's hand, "is put it on the door or something next time you and my brother decide to do..." -she paused and grimaced- "...stuff. Or better yet, don't do any stuff at all."

"Well we didn't tonight, thanks to someone ruining the mood," Kitty grumbled, ignoring her roommate's devilish smirk as she watched Kitty grab the sock off the doorknob and throw it on the floor. The brunette girl continued to make her way across the room, flopping down on the bed with a bounce, disturbing Lockheed. The purple dragon shot his mistress a disgruntled look as he resettled himself down on a more comfortable spot on top of her pillow.

"What, you think I wanted to see that?" Illyana asked defensively, sitting on the side of her bed across from Kitty and throwing the sock onto her stomach. "I'm scarred for life now. That was the most horrific thing I've ever seen, and I grew up in a hell dimension."

Kitty rolled her eyes. "You said the same thing last week when I ate two whole cheese pizzas at Pizza Bonanza," she argued, balling the sock up and aiming it at her best friend's head. The sorceress caught the garment easily in her fist and placed it beside her on the comforter.

"Last week. I miss last week," she sighed wistfully. "Those were the good old days, when my Friday night wasn't spent alone and I still thought watching you stuff your face like the Blob was the most disgusting thing humanly possible." Illyana grinned impishly, a malicious twinkle in her sapphire eyes. "Now I know better," she teased, snatching up the sock and hurling it in Kitty's direction.

The young X-Man phased quickly, letting the piece of clothing pass through her. "Well then I guess what they say is true. You learn something new every day," she said smugly, reaching behind her to grabbed the garment, holding it up to show her roommate with a wide smirk on her face.

Illyana wrinkled her nose at her. "And what exactly did you learn today? Wait, on second thought, don't answer that."

Kitty smiled shyly, a deep blush coloring her cheeks. She fell backwards onto her pillow, earning another glare of annoyance from her favorite dragon. "I learned how wonderful your brother really is," she sighed, feeling completly lovestruck. "He has so much passion in him, I don't know why he spends so much time trying to hide it. But the way he touches you when he finally lets you in-"

Illyana clamped her hands over her ears and stared at her friend with a look of horror on her face. "I said don't answer that," she groaned with a shudder.

"Phui," Lockheed snorted in agreement from his spot on the pillow.

"See?" the blonde teenager pointed out. "He heard me."

"Traitor," Kitty muttered, throwing the sock lightly at her little dragon friend. Lockheed grumbled and fluttered over to his sleeping basket, fed up with the two girls interrupting his rest. "And as for you, Blondie," she teased as she walked over to her dresser to change into her pajamas, "You're just jealous cause you don't have a man."

"No, I'm just grossed out that someone would actually touch my brother," Illyana shot back. "Besides, look at the boys I have to pick from. Two are naive goody two-shoes and the other is almost unhealthily obsessed with 'Magnum, P.I.' Not to mention the little problem of them all being more than slightly terrified of me."

"You have to look beyond the X-Babies, 'Yana," Kitty advised, pulling out her yellow pajama set. "Hey, what about Kurt?" she joked, grabbing Bamf off the armchair next to the dresser and tossing it to her friend. "You and Amanda could have a sorcerer's duel for his heart," she giggled, a twinkle in her coffee colored eyes.

"Very funny," her friend groused, holding the stuffed toy away from her. Kitty took it as she passed on the way back to her bed, now dressed in her pajamas. "Besides, I don't think it would work," Illyana continued. "Unlike you, I don't go for older men."

Kitty sat back down on the bed and hugged Bamf tightly to her chest. "You don't think he's too old, do you?" she asked quietly, all traces of playfulness gone from her voice.

"No," Illyana assured her quickly, "it's just, I dunno. What if you want to do stuff?"

"What do you think we were trying to do downstairs?" she muttered bashfully.

"Don't remind me," the young Russian groaned. "I can't believe you're actually going to make me talk about this subject in conjunction with my own brother. It's just, what are the two of you going to do? About sex, I mean. You'll have to wait at least four years if you don't want your first time to be considered a crime in this country."

"Then we'll wait four years," Kitty answered firmly. "Or, if I'm ready before then...well I guess Peter and I will just have to take a trip to Russia, or some other country where the laws are different. I don't want us to have to feel like were doing something wrong. But we've talked about this, last week, and again tonight. We'll make it work," she vowed, pulling off the sheets of her bed and climbing in. Illyana followed her example, and the older mutant waited with her hand on the switch until she was settled in before turning off the light.

"Kitty?" Illyana's voice rang out in the darkness. "Do you think you'll marry my brother one day?" Kitty remained silent. "It's alright, I won't tell him anything." Still getting no answer, the blonde girl flipped on the light and looked over at her friend lying wide awake on the other bed. "You do, don't you?" she said. Kitty said nothing but nodded in response, her eyes shining at the thought of one day being Peter's wife. "I think he does, too," Illyana continued, trying not to show her elation at her friend's admission. "You know if you marry him, we can be sisters."

"I'd like that."

"Me too." Illyana paused for a moment. "So lets speed this up then," she said animatedly, grabbing her roommate's arm and pulling her out of bed. "You two spend way too much time being shy. It's time to tell him exactly what you want."

"Hey! You promised!" Kitty argued as the younger girl dragged her towards the door.

Illyana turned towards her, a wicked smile on her face. "I lied."

"You are not telling him anything!" she protested, wriggling out of her friend's grip. Kitty folded her arms staunchly across her chest and stared at her friend, challenging the younger girl to disobey her. Illyana's smirk only widened, and she continued walking briskly down the hall.

"I am if I get to his room first!" she called out over her shoulder.

"Oh no you don't," Kitty said, breaking into a run. Illyana shrieked and quickened her pace, Kitty right at her heels.

"I'm gonna tell him," she taunted in a sing song voice as they came closer to Peter's room. Kitty sprinted the last few feet of the hall, phasing past Illyana and into the room just as her friend was about to yank open the door.

"Katya!"

"Peter!" Kitty exclaimed, surprised to find him still up and wearing nothing but his boxers, showing off his bare, muscular chest. "Your-I- she-" the young X-Man stuttered. From the other side of the door she heard a familiar gleeful laugh followed by retreating footsteps and realized she had been tricked.

"Did you miss me already?" Peter teased, bemused by her flustered behavior.

"I'm sorry," she muttered, her eyes downcast. "I'll go."

"Don't."

"Why? You want me to help you pass the wolf hours?" she joked, her expression sobering as she saw the trepedation in his eyes. "I thought you said we should wait," she whispered, reaching up to place her hand on his cheek.

"I also said we had many things to occupy us while we wait," he reminded, his hand eveloping hers as his fingers gently intertwined with hers. "I want to sleep with you."

Kitty's eyes widdened and she pulled her hand away from his. "Pet-"

"-Katya, I apologize, I did not- that came out wrong," he corrected himself quickly. "I do not wish to sleep with you. I mean, I do, that is I-" he paused for a moment and collected his thoughts. "That is not what I meant. It is not what I wanted for tonight."

"Then what do you want?" she asked hesitantly.

"I wish to share my bed with you," he explained, placing his hand softly on her bare arm, just below her shoulder. "I want to fall asleep with you in my arms and wake up with you beside me."

"So no...?" she questioned.

"Nyet," he assured her, his blue eyes bright and earnest. "I just want to hold you."

Kitty stared up at him, unable to squeak out an answer. She walked stiffly over to the bed, throwing him a timid smile, then climbed in, a little clumsily. Peter came in after her, his foot brushing her leg as he settled into the sheets. She flinched at his touch.

"Sorry," he muttered akwardly, dishearted by his Katya's reaction. Peter turned off the light and arranged himself on the bed, careful not to touch the girl lying next to him.

The two lied together in the darkness, and Peter listened as Kitty's breathing grew quicker and deeper. He felt her hand reach out for his, sliding over it and squeezing gently. The blue eyed Russian turned to stare at her, just able to see her smiling in the dark. She turned her body towards him and relaxed her posture, inching closer. He put his free arm around her back and pushed her the rest of the way towards him, embracing her lithe body.

"You are sure you wish to do this?" he whispered, running his fingers through her soft hair. Kitty snuggled closer to him and sighed in contentment.

"Posative," she agreed, amazed at how something so chaste as being in someone's arms could feel so sensual.

"Good" he murmered, kissing the top of her head and closing his eyes to savor the feeling of her touch.

"Peter?" she asked sleepily. "Do you have an alarm clock?"

"Of course. Why?" he questioned, unsure why she was bringing this up now.

"I just want to make sure I get out of here before everyone else wakes up. If you thought Storm and Logan would go ballistic if they caught us downstairs, imagine what they would do if they found us like this."

Peter frowned at th idea of having to let go of his Katya before he was ready. "I have no doubt it would be worth it," he assured her.

"Yeah. Besides, you'll be the one they attack," she teased, a small giggle bubbling out of her.

"True," Peter said in mock agreement, noticing her mischevious smile. "Perhaps it is best that you should go," he told Kitty, holding her tighter.

"Too late. A gentleman never backs out of an offer," she reminded.

"Who says I'm a gentleman?" he joked.

"I do, Petey Pureheart. And I'm always right. I'm a genius, you know."

"I know. You've mentioned it before. Many, many times. Tell me Katya, is that not why you picked me?" Peter asked lightly.

"Nah. I just thought you were cute."

"Also true."

"Actually, that was a joke," she teased, turning her head up to give him a quick kiss on the lips. "Goodnight, Peter," she sighed, settling back into his embrace.

"Goodnight, Katya. I'll see you when I wake up."


Hope you enjoyed the story! This is a continuation of Jeremy Harper's vignette entitled "Pushing It". If you haven't read that you should go do so right now, along with his other Kitty-Peter storys, "Old Enough" and "Deathless".