AN: If I owned the X-Men, Rogue and Remy wouldn't be breaking up and Jean would stay dead, so what does that tell you? "Fifty-Fifty Chance" belongs to Suzanne Vega. The timeline doesn't really matter here.

O-o-o-o-O

50-50 chance the doctor said in the cardiac room as she's lying in bed

There's a pan on the floor filled with something black. I need to know I'm afraid to ask

The first thing Raven had wanted to do was scream.

There had been no sign, no warning. Of course they say that the ones who want to succeed never send a sign. There was just her body laying still on the bed; her breathing too slow, her heart too quiet, the bottle of pills on the stand beside her.

Now as Raven sat by Irene's hospital bed, the other woman's heart steadier now but still shaky, she was torn between wanting to cry and wanting to wring her partner's neck.

I hug you I hum to you I've come to you I touch you I tell you I love you I sing to you bring to you anything

She's known for years that Irene's mutation was hard on her; knowing the future could be a torment because anything you say or do could change it for good or ill, but she had never thought that it would become such a burden that she would see no other course but to take her own life. What could Irene have seen that could torment her so?

Damnit! It made Raven feel so helpless sitting here, and if there was anything she hated, it was to feel helpless. And that was another thing, why didn't she confide in her like she used to? I had no idea things were this bad. When you awake dear heart, I'm going to give you a big hug; then I'm going to give you the sternest lecture you've ever received.

Her little heart it beats so fast her body trembles with the effort to last

She sighed, looking at the still figure on the bed. Irene looked so pale, it made her feel ill inside. How could you do this to yourself? I thought we were happy, and you always seemed to value life. How could you do this to me? Don't you know how much I need you? You're the one steady thing in my life where everything changes, even myself. Maybe I don't tell you enough, but then, you know I'm not one for sentimental things like that, at least not on a regular basis. You always seemed to know though, without my telling you. So how could things go this far, get so bad? Were things so far gone that not even I could help? Was death truly the only answer?

I hug you I hum to you I've come to you I touch you I tell you I love you I sing to you bring to you anything

Was it her fault somehow? Raven knew that to others it seemed like she just used Destiny for her powers, but that was really for Irene's own protection. Raven had many enemies, and if it were known what their true relationship was she could be made a target. Better that she just be considered another employee. Besides, she's used her own children, why not her lover? Just one more thing that needed to be done, one more regret in her life. But this regret is lying in a hospital. Your children have each other and the X-Men for support; what does Irene have? You? You've really shown yourself to be a stable person, Raven Darkholme, her own mental voice laughed derisively.

She's going home tomorrow at ten the question is will she try it again?

The figure on the bed stirred and Raven was yanked from her reverie.

"Raven?" Irene whispered. Raven opened her mouth but no words came out.

Irene's mouth twitched. "I know you're there. I could hear you fidget."

"I'm trying to decide whether to be happy you're okay or to undo the doctor's work and take you out myself."

A tired little smile appeared on Irene's face. "I'm glad to see you too, Raven."

She stood up from her chair and leaning over the bed, pressed a kiss on Irene's forehead. "You nearly took me with you" she whispered, "Don't you ever, ever try anything like that again."

Irene turned her face away, looking ashamed. "Raven, I....."

She sat back down. "No, not right now, you're still weak. But when we get home, we're going to have a long talk. I'm not sure how we'll work this out yet, but you're not going to be alone so much. I'll cut back some of my workload if I have to, but you shouldn't be going through your rough periods alone. I've been failing you in that regard. I've already lost my children; I won't lose you too."

"Raven, you shouldn't have to..."

"No buts Irene."

She sighed. "Whatever you say dear."

Raven growled. "I hate it when you say that." She got up from her chair. "I'm going to tell the doctor you're awake. Do try to behave yourself while I'm gone.

"I'll do my best."

"Good." Raven kissed her cheek and left the room. Irene settled back on the pillow, a faint smile of satisfaction on her face.

FIN