Disclaimer: Dave's mine, the' X-men' isn't. Damn. Part 8

"This is Trish Tilby reporting live from a scene of total devastation in the heart of the Genoshan capital, Hammer Bay. It was just a typical day for the residents of this fine city before a group of super-powered mutants, calling themselves the 'Acolytes', appeared in the skies above and rained hell-fire down upon the unsuspecting innocents in the streets."

"Justifying their actions by claiming this as reprisals for the forced slavery of their kind in work-camps under the previous administration, the five mutants proceeded to commit wholesale slaughter and destruction until they were stopped by the timely intervention of the X-men, a vigilante group of mutants dedicated to the peaceful co-existence of our two races."

"The X-men seemingly gained the upper hand until the known mutant terrorist, Magneto, appeared on the scene, claiming leadership of the Acolytes and turning the tide of the battle. His attempt to withdraw from the scene with the X-men as hostages was thwarted, however, when an unknown mutant appeared and forced Magneto to retreat from the scene with his hands empty. A parting gift came in the shape of a three-story building being pulled down on top of the mutant and his well-known comrades. We wait to see if anyone has survived the impact…"

***

Rogue woke to find herself in complete darkness. After sitting up and taking a moment to get her bearings, she began to feel around for any other people, "Hey," She called out,  "Anyone there?"

"Yeah, yeah, yeah." Logan replied gruffly, lifting himself up onto his elbows and sniffing the air "We're all here."

"An' where would that be?" She said, rubbing her eyes. "An' who turned out the lights? Ah can't see a thing."

"One, we ain't gone anywhere, I'm still getting the smells of the city, and I'd say we're buried under some heavy-duty amounts of rubble."

Rogue eyed her surrounding suspiciously, "Pretty lucky to have a handy-dandy clear spot open up on top of us like that."

"Yeah. Pretty lucky." Wolverine replied.

A strained laugh broke the silence, "I-it had n-nothing to d-do with luck."

"David?" Rogue said, straining to see the newest member of the team in the darkness. "Is that ya'll?"

"Yep, i-it's me"

"Where are ya?"

"Oh, around…"

"You alright? You don't sound none to good."

There was a brief pause, "N-now that you mention it, no. I'm not." He replied tersely, "T-this stuff on my 'back' is pretty f-fucking heavy, and I don't think I'm gonna be able to h-hold it for much longer, so I'd appreciate any thoughts you might have on GETTING US THE HELL OUT OF HERE!"

"Whoa, way to go Mr Cool, Calm And Collected." They heard Shadowcat mutter groggily as she sat up next to, a gradually awakening, Gambit, cradling her head in her hands and trying to clear her thoughts.

"Kitty?" David called out, trying to keep the worry he'd felt for her when the building had collapsed onto them out of his voice. "You ok?"

"Hopefully," She replied bluntly, lifting herself up into a sitting position she tried to see the other X-men. "It's pretty dark in here, anyone got a light?"

"Your wish, cherie, is this Cajun's pleasure in making come true." Gambit said before taking out a playing card and charging it with a small amount of his kinetic power, the glow produced was enough for them to see everyone else in the enclosed space.

Kitty took a second, then a third look around, "Uh, David?" She asked.

"Y-yeah?"

"Where are you exactly?"

***

"I-I can't keep it off my back for much longer," Pulse groaned as his energy began to wane and the rubble shifted in position, allowing the smaller pieces of debris to fall through the, newly opened, cracks and clatter against the outside of David's force-field body.

Shadowcat glanced at Rogue and the pair exchanged a worried look. Rogue, for her part, was concerned about Cyclops, he'd been out cold for some time now and didn't seem to be making any signs of waking up any time soon. Kitty's mind was more focused on other parts of the current situation or, more specifically, David.

"I think the situation calls for a speedy exit don't you?" She said, projecting as much confidence as she could at the group.

"I'm all ears darlin" Logan replied, "Got anything else up those sleeves other than cards Gumbo?" He asked the Cajun mutant.

"Not for getting out of here mon ami." Gambit answered back. "I tink it's time to call in the back up non?" He said eyeing Kitty thoughtfully. "Or maybe it's time for Ms Kitty-Cat to do her phasing ting and get to the Blackbird, call help, blow de rubble up from the outside or somet'ing, gotta be better than standing about worrying eh?"

Kitty stood there aghast, why hadn't she thought of that before? Had her worry for David affected her judgement so easily, it had never happened before, even for Logan.  What was happening here?

Kitty looked at Logan who returned the gaze before nodding slightly at her, "Yer know it's the only way out for us Kitty. Rogue can only batter this stuff away from us if David lets her through his force-field and he ain't got the strength left or experience ta make sure the rest don't come crashing down on the rest o' us." He said, gradually inching closer to her so that only she could hear the final bit of what he had to say. "I know yer worried about Dave Kit, but he's strong and you ain't doing him any good stuck in here."

Kitty nodded in agreement, " Ok you've got a point, but I'll take the rest of you with me. While I go to get the Blackbird you can start hauling some of the rubble off of David's back and, hopefully, buy us some more time."

"I'm staying," Logan replied sternly as everyone turned to look at him but he ignored their questioning looks and looked at Shadowcat. "Someone needs ta stay with the kid and keep him going, Cyke needs to get back to the Mansion fast so as soon you get to the 'Bird I want you gone and letting them know what's going on." Logan turned to Rogue and Gambit. "I ain't got the right power ta do anything out there but you two have, as soon as you get out start laying into this thing with all you've got. There's gonna be people out there who won't be none too pleased ta see mutants still in the area so work fast but work quiet."

"S-sounds like a p-plan to me." David replied as light-heartedly as he could, trying to keep the ever-increasing strain of the load out of his voice.

Kit walked over to a more secluded area of the bubble and whispered to Pulse "We'll get you out of this David, I promise."

A face appeared out of the bubble just in front of her and Kitty forced herself to smile with as much confidence as she could. "I know you will Kit," He replied, "It's worth it just to see that smile." He ventured teasingly and a more genuine, shy, smile broke across Kitty's face at the gesture.

"Time to get going Kitty," Rogue called out as she picked up Cyclops and moved closer to the edge with Gambit. David gave her a wink before the face disappeared into the rest of the bubble and she turned around, held Rogue and Gambit's arms and activated her power.

As soon as she started to phase through Pulse's body Kitty knew something was terribly wrong. David screamed in agony as the electrical bonds - holding the molecules of his body together - were disrupted by Kitty's power and almost lost consciousness with the strain. Kitty and her passengers were thrown back into the dome with the shock.

"David!" Shadowcat screamed frantically as she tried to get to her feet but couldn't and fell back to the ground.

"Ahhh, Jesus!" David groaned out, trying desperately to hold his body together. "What the bloody 'ell happened there?"

"Seems like Kitty's power doesn't particularly compliment yours mon ami." Gambit commented dryly, smoothly producing a playing card from nowhere and charging it up.

"Thanks fer the insight Sherlock," Logan replied sarcastically, using the light to help Kitty up from where she was laying. "How's Cyke?"

"Not good, " Rogue replied. "He's got a pulse but it's getting weaker by the minute."

Logan cursed inwardly and tried to think of other ways to escape. And failed.

"Shit. Anyone got any ideas?"

"I dunno but we'd better come up with something quick if we're…."

"Shut up." Pulse said, interrupting Rogue, "I-I'm trying to concentrate."

"What… David no, you're too weak!" Kitty exclaimed, realising what he was going to do.

"I-It's you're only chance Kit." He replied and turned his attention back to his plan.

The rubble started to tremble as Pulse began to pour what remained of his dwindling energy into one last push against the mountain of debris above him.

"Don't David!" She cried out frantically, "No!"

He started to glow brighter and brighter until he couldn't give anymore and seemingly exploded upwards, catapulting the pile of rocks into the air and away from the stunned X-men.

"No."

Rogue looked around, searching for any hint of their friend. "David, where are ya'll!" She called out frantically, turning over the nearby debris in a futile attempt to find him.

"Come on David!"

A strong hand on her shoulder stopped her and she turned around to see Logan standing next to her, a mixture of sorrow and anxiety in his expression. Kitty stood further away, holding her arms close to her and looking like she might be sick at any minute

"He's gone darlin'," Logan said softly, "And besides, we've got some other matters to attend to." He continued, nodding his head towards the, rapidly advancing, swarm of reporters.

"Damn," She replied, eyeing the mass with dread. "We've gotta get out o'here now." Rogue said a silent prayer for the lost X-man and then took to the skies. "Logan, you Kitty and Gambit go on foot, I'll carry Scott back to the Blackbird and get it ready to go." She called out as she picked up the unconscious body of Cyclops and flew towards the jet, Gambit following closely behind.

Wolverine moved softly towards the closest thing he had to a daughter.

"Do you really think he's gone Logan?" She asked quietly, her face ashen.

"I know darlin'," He replied, "But we ain't got time to hang about and see what happens."

Kitty nodded in acknowledgement, said a silent prayer for her friend then turned and headed for the Blackbird.

Damn! Is Dave dead! What's going on with Cyclops? Will Kitty ever recover? Will I ever write another bit of this? Well, that all depends on you! If I gets me some reviews then I'll see what I can do!