No Secret At All

It's no secret that the stars are falling from the sky
It's no secret that our world is in darkness tonight

Things were different when I came back the third time. It had been a year and a half, and of course things change, but not always so radically, or maybe I just never look close enough to notice. I never really cared before, so of course it didn't matter then.

It mattered when I came back the third time, though.

She was beautiful. Radiantly beautiful, not that she'd ever been anything different. I've wanted that woman since the first time my eyes fell on her, never denied that. I've never actively tried to get her in the sack though - as much as Scooter really annoys me, he saved my life once, and he looks after Marie even now. That's enough for me, so while I look, I don't touch.

And then everything changed. She walked up to me, straight and proud, and despite what she said I never even noticed that the ring was gone. Only noticed that later, a hell of a lot later, that the ring was gone. That's when I figured this wasn't just some weird misunderstanding in paradise, where for once my bed was warmed and Scooter slept alone. Only much later did I realize that the situation was a shit load more permanent than I ever like to think about.

So things changed.

She had her own room, but it was redundant as hell.

Things seemed calm enough between the two exes, but they were fuck-all too quiet between me and him. Like we were afraid that if we started something, only one would walk away. Since I'm honest to myself only in a fight, I can say that if he has scruples at all, I'd win. And if he didn't… Well, they say he can blast a hole the size of a mountain without control. And I'm fast, but this old body doesn't move at the speed of light. Maybe I'd get in one or two good ones, get to lob something off before he got pissed enough to lose control, but it would happen, and then where would we be?

Xavier assumed, rightly or wrongly, that we were all adults and kept his opinion to himself. Ororo didn't. In fact, she doesn't like me too much these days, and I really can't figure why. It ain't -I can tell you- directly about this, either. But that woman's a mystery to me.

But no more so than little Marie. Who, granted, isn't all that little anymore, but shit. She didn't take to the idea of Me and Jean too well. No sir, not well at all. Fuck me if I know why, I thought she'd understand better than anybody. I mean, she's got me - I'm still up there with her. She can spin whatever shit she wants with other people, but she can't lie to me about it. She can smell what I can, she can hear what I can, hell half the time she thinks like I do. She doesn't even try to hide it, at least not so I can't see it.

Hell, it's been years, though. I mean, maybe she doesn't even know she does it anymore. Maybe it's like me, just instinct. Maybe I really am out of her head. But that doesn't make understanding her any easier, especially how often we don't talk anymore.

They say the sun is sometimes eclipsed by a moon
Y'know I don't see you when she walks in the room

I took her riding a couple weeks ago, getting her to go only after prostrating myself and practically begging. Told her how we don't talk anymore. Told her how I missed it.

She glared at me and tugged on her gloves impatiently. Told me how she had to be some place else with someone else. That's when I had to resort to being pathetic. I think I pulled out every ace I had, knowing it could be the last time I use them with her, ever. It had gotten that far, though I'm not sure exactly how, or exactly when it happened.

She'd run off, and for twenty minutes I thought that maybe I'd acted too late. Maybe she'd gone out with her boyfriend anyway, and just to spite me, not said anything. It hurt more than I'd ever expected.

She was young when we first met, but she is the reason I am who I claim to be today. She brought me back to civilization, gave me something to believe in. She was my mission, my only mission for a while there, and the only thing I gave a shit about was finding out who I was and making sure she was safe, not always in that order. Sometimes we'd talked in the past, sometimes we hadn't, but we'd always been close. It was like she was my little sister and no matter where I went or what I did, she'd always accept me back.

As I see it, she's the only thing approximating family I claim to have, Jean notwithstanding. And stupid me, I've been so wrapped up with the latter I haven't paid any attention to the former, at least I figure that's what the score is. Like I said, she may or may not have me up in her head, but she's still a woman, and she's still Marie, and she still seems to be living up to that other name of hers, so who really knows what the score is.

So there I was, standing in the foyer feeling damn foolish because maybe she was gonna come back and go out with me and maybe she was somewhere making out with the card-flipping wonder, and then I thought about how I'd actually turned down sex to be with her, and what does this say about me?

And then she came back down the hall. I could hear the clip of boots she hadn't been wearing before hand, but it made sense. She'd been wearing a longish dress before which wasn't ideal for a motorcycle.

The first thing I noticed wasn't the tight jeans or the second-skin knit top she had on, or her little kid gloves that didn't quite reach her wrists, or the brown bomber jacket slung over one shoulder, or even that she didn't have a damn thing around her neck but a thin gold chain her boyfriend had given her.

The first damn thing I noticed was that my little Marie had beautiful eyes, better even than Jeannie's.

It all went downhill from there.

It's no secret that a friend is someone who lets you help
It's no secret that a liar won't believe anyone else

Still don't know why Ororo won't talk to me these days. Not that it's something that bothers me over much, not something I'm gonna lose sleep over, but every now and then it gets me. Jean's already warned me not to start a war about it, and I figure with my temper what that translates as 'don't even bring it up, just let it pass', so I do, but it pisses me off sometimes.

I even asked Marie about it one time when it was just me and her off somewhere. She got this faraway look in her eye and I knew that wasn't me or Magneto or anybody else I knew she'd touched. That look was pure Marie as far as I was concerned, and it was a strange way for her to react. Can't quite put my finger on why, but it was.

She'd laughed a little then, but wasn't any humor in it. Told me she'd talk to her about it, which confused me even more. I wasn't asking Marie to fight my fights for me, and I think she knew that. At least, she did once I told her. And so she laughed again, with a little more feeling this time. Said she'd pass that message along as well.

I remember something else she said that day. Asked me if I ever thought about the future. It was a weird switch in the conversation at the time, and I didn't quite get what she was after, not then and not for a long time.

Not really, I think I answered. She did, apparently. Didn't know exactly what she wanted, but knew she at least had options. That made me happy for her, that she had options, and that was about the time I realized I'd lied to her, not even meaning to. See, I try not to lie to Marie. Sometimes I fail miserably, but I figure I owe her that. She hauled my head out of my ass, the least I can do is be the one friend she can count on the truth from.

But I lied to her that day, and ever since I've been trying to think of a way to tell her that I don't think about my future, but I do think about hers.

They say a secret is something you tell one other person
So I'm telling you… child.

She broke up with her boyfriend at one point. Didn't see her for a while after that, though in my defense I did look, but when Marie has it in her mind not to be found, you don't find her.

Eventually I did run her to ground in the Danger Room. I sat in that booth for an hour, watching her go through the scenarios and it wouldn't have been half so bad if it hadn't been Ororo who was running her through them. It was really hard to be still and appreciate how nice Marie's form was when I had the weather witch seething tension five feet off to my left.

It was during the last scenario that I finally decided to cut the shit and find out what the problem was. She told me I was a blind, callous, hedonistic pig and that if I couldn't see what was staring me in the face I didn't deserve to see it, if I remember correctly. Didn't get a damn other thing out of her that week.

In the end though, persistence is key. Even I know that, and Ororo isn't any more resistant to extreme repetition than anybody else. She looked me in the eye one day and something inside me squirmed. By now I'd figured out that she was pissed because of how I treated Marie when I'd first gotten back, though the last couple of months I've been damn attentive, if I do say so myself. Maybe too attentive, though Marie didn't seem to be complaining, even if Jean did sometimes.

And I thought about that when Ororo looked at me like she was looking through me with some kind of wisdom I couldn't even dream about. Thought about how possessive Jeannie's been acting lately whenever I try to spend time with Marie, and how if there hadn't been so many other things in the way, that maybe she'd have a bonified reason for all that jealousy. Thought about how it bothered me less and less that Jean felt that way, and more and more about how it might affect Marie. Thought about how my sex life had suffered for it, and how I didn't really care.

Okay, that was a lie. I cared. I just cared differently is all. And I didn't care to think about that when Ororo was looking at me like she was for all the world a telepath.

Let me tell you a secret, she said. A secret she claimed I should have known a long time ago. Said she knew how Jean felt about me, how Marie felt about me. Said it was obvious who I'd chosen for lover and for friend. Said it was as obvious to anyone who looked that I'd chosen badly.

Screw her, I thought. And I growled. And I stormed off, and took the bike and was gone for a week.

Because she was right, of course.

Look I gotta go, yeah I'm running out of change
There's a lot of things if I could I'd rearrange

I came back, of course. I had some shit to settle before I really left.

Had to talk to Xavier, make some minor arrangements.

Had to talk to Scott, trade the bike in for something larger, and I managed to wedge some friendly advice in with the grunting. If he's not entirely dense, and I don't think he is, maybe he'll follow it and actually get somewhere.

Had to talk to Jeannie, telling her what she already knew was true, but I did owe it to her and she took it well, I think. She has Scooter anyway, if she needs someone to talk to.

Didn't talk to Ororo, but I saw her, and she saw me and since I had Marie's duffel bag in one hand and her bomber jacket in the other, I figure she knew the score and knew that I owed her one.

Which leaves my Marie, who I found before any of them. She was pissed at me for leaving and not saying goodbye, but we had a little talk, by the end of which she was on my lap moaning and writhing and generally making me wish I had more time and more condoms.

It wasn't so bad though. Condoms are easily gotten things and while I may not be thinking about my own future, I sure as hell am thinking about hers. She always did want to see Canada.

Now that you've finished this story, you'll probably want to check out my most recent short stories. Find my original fiction on sale at amazon author / sarelizgordy

Title: No Secret At All
Author: Sare Liz Gordy TeknoVamp
Archive: Email me and it's yours
Disclaimer: I've been reading too much fic (thank you marvel) I've been listening to too much U2 (thank you boys) And I'm just waiting for the pizza to be delivered, that's all. The song is 'The Fly' from Achtung Baby. Track 7, it's lovely. The whole album is lovely. Go have a listen.
Series: None
Distribution: list archives,
Author's Note: This is a love story. Or rather, it's the synopsis of a slice of a fucked up life in which we see one side of a love story. But that's not where we come in, oh no. We start with the love story before that.

Extra Added Warning: This isn't for Jean/Logan shippers, oh no. This is me (you know, the one who gets traumatized easily from such things?). This is for Logan/Rogue shippers, all the way.

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