LOVE: n. Warm affection; sexual passion; a sweetheart; in games a score of nothing.
The restaurant was, as per usual on a Sunday night, busy. Chatter filled the building, silverware tinkled, music played gently, waiters squeezed through to serve people. Low lights reflected the red walls and lit up the many black and white prints that were scattered across on them. It was a beautiful place, quite homely, yet had a touch of elegance that could simply not be placed into words.
In the far right corner, nearly invisible to sight, sat two teenagers. One a boy with sandy coloured hair was holding out a velvet box across the table, a nervous smile lining his face. The other, a girl, with two vivid white streaks plastered across her dark brown hair, was leaning forward, her emerald eyes concentrating on the box.
"Oh, Bobby," she gushed, a southern accent ringing softly, "It's beautiful!"
Her name was Rogue. A name that, at first, did not seem to suit such a pretty girl.
Once upon a time, in a far away land, she had a different name. But then again, that name was for a different person altogether. Her new name, now, suited her much better and most knew her by no other.
"You think so?"
This was Bobby. A nervous teenager at a slightly expensive restaurant, celebrating a three year anniversary. At least he was allowed to keep his name.
Two normal teenagers in love, yet they would never be normal. Never could be. For they shared one gene that separated them from humanity. One that labeled them for life. They were mutants and in turn had abnormalities. Powers, really.
But her power would scar her for life. It was a curse, one that could suck souls and leave comatose bodies, some even with no heartbeat left. Her power – her curse- laid in her toxic skin, making contact fruitless, and the expression of love impossible. But then, that day, at that precise moment, both were too joyous and lost in each other to agonize. They were too distracted to even begin to let the angst overcome them. However, the simple cold truth was that only one of them shared this state of bliss. The other was confused, hiding behind a mask that had fast become a second face to the world.
Rouge leant forward and stroked the chain, with a gloved hand, hiding her disappoint well. She loved Bobby; she knew that, but the fact – the reality - was that she hated the pendant.
And she hated that he didn't know.
Lying had become a second nature to her, however, and she knew if she tried she could play the part well. It was sad that this was what her life was reduced to, but she did bear it well and the scars that she felt were rarely shared.
"Do you want me to put it on?" Bobby suddenly spoke and smiled, indicating the charade was working,
She parted her cherry lips to say, no, not now, but then immediately closed them, as the anxiety on his face grew into hope at alarming speed.
"Please." She swept up her hair, holding it to the side, and smiled back.
He gently lifted the chain up, the fancy 'M' pendant catching the light with a glint, and fastened it securely around her neck.
"Ah love it," she let down her hair, and looked down towards her lap, carefully hiding her frown.
"I love you." His hand tilted her chin up, bringing his lips closer.
She quickly turned away, his lips instead grazing her cheek, "Bobby…"
"You can't…" He sighed and didn't bother finishing.
"Not here," she glanced around quickly. Her heart knew how much the other patrons would appreciate her 'ice-breath'. There were so many couples in love under that one roof, yet not one could possibly understand their predicament.
He too looked around, before nodding slowly, "Okay, I get it."
There was a slight edge in his voice that slightly upset and enforced the guilt like cement.
A short silence passed, while they both avidly watched their surroundings, clearly avoiding each other.
"So, um," she broke the silence and fidgeted with her napkin, "How did you find out about this place?"
"Scott," Bobby sipped his coke.
"Scott? Scott Summers?" She stared at him, her hand dropping the napkin as she accidentally knockedthe pepper over. Hastily, she tried to push it off the table, but only succeeded in leaving a dusky smear on the cream tablecloth.
He looked up, surprised, "Why? Who else what I have gone to? Kurt? Logan?"
His laughter rang like a bell, and for the first time in her life, it annoyed the hell out of her.
"Yeah but…" She took a deep breath, mostly to calm the rogue inside her, "You went tah Scott Summers for advice?"
"I just said so," Bobby looked concerned, "Have I done something wrong?"
"No," she laid her right hand on the table and linked her fingers with his, the silk material purposefully chafing his skin, "Nothing at all."
It was just, she thought, that sometimes she wanted something else. Sure, Bobby was nice, but sometimes she didn't want a nice boy. Sometimes she wanted someone with an edge, someone dangerous, someone unpredictable. Not a Scott Summers clone. Hell, why did he even have to ask anyone for advice?
Because, lately, thoughts like these had been creeping into her mind, scaring the hell out of her and forcing her to deeply ponder her future.
She did love Bobby, yes she did, but yet sometimes she couldn't help feeling trapped all the same. Things had changed, and what she wanted in life was not as clear as it had once been.
"Don't call me that," she snapped, rudely awakened.
He flushed as a deeper realisation hit him, "Sorry. Just that…"
He gestured upwards towards a waiter holding a menu, who was in the process giving Bobby a slightly sympathetic look with a glance of humour lying in the shadows. With that gesture, her stomach felt queasy and only then did she realise that she had succeeded in embarrassing her boyfriend foolishly. She sighed and, acting on an old instinct, looked out the window.
It was just too dark to see anything.
Just like her relationship with Bobby.
All she could see was nothing.
"Miss?" A kind voice, slightly hurried. The waiter looked over towards another table where a blonde and her tall auburn haired boyfriend, sat, anxiously waiting for a menu. The latter looked oddly familiar and for one moment, Rogue followed the waiter's gaze onto him, before almost instantaneously turning back to the table.
"Don't you want dessert?" Bobby asked anxiously. It was obvious that he was unclear on whether she was still mad at him, and oddly enough, it sounded almost as if he was trying to hide something.
The waiter tittered.
Rogue pushed aside the vase that lay between them, the lone orange flower prodding awkwardly from the center, and looked hard and straight into his crystal eyes. After a moment a smile played on her lips, "Why not?"
"SO? WHAT HAPPENED? You're back late!"
"Sshhhhh!" Rogue closed the door gently behind her, "I don't want to make too much noise. Logan's already given us a lecture for being late."
She was lucky in the way that the room she shared was considerably large, with enough space for all their belongings, whether it be the beds or the laptop. It was decorated to suit both tastes, with some compromises occurring, naturally. The mansion had long become her home, and Rogue loved it accordingly. However, what she loved mainly and foremost about the room was that it was hers. It was a sanctuary to her, and one of the few places in the world where she truly felt safe.
Her younger roommate, Katherine Pryde, leapt up from the bed where she was pretending to sleep and giggled childishly. "He is so overprotective. Are you sure you haven't like forgotten to tell him you're nineteen?"
"Twenty come a few months," Rogue lay down on her bed and kicked off her shoes, "God, three years at the mansion, where did all that time go?"
"I don't know!" Kitty shrugged, discarding the question, "But come on, girl, spill! Did he give you that?"
"No, the Wicked Witch of the West did," Rogue threw a magazine from the bed and stretched her legs.
Kitty rolled her eyes and opened her mouth to say something in retaliation, but then, at that exact moment her eyes fell on the chain, "Rogue! Oh- my- god, it's gorgeous! Can I see?"
Rogue sat up, undid the clasp and handed it across the Kitty, "Glad you think so."
Kitty's face fell in the middle of the examining the pendant, "You don't like it?"
"No, it's…." She laid back on the bed and spread her arms, "It's tah fancy."
"Fancy?" Kitty laughed, "It's supposed to be. It must have like cost a fortune, even if it is for an anniversary. And, remember, it's the thought that counts…"
"It's silver," Rogue touched her scarlet outfit, "You know that gold looks better on me, even if it's fake."
Kitty sat on the edge of the bed and peered into Rogue's face, "What's the real reason you don't like this pendant? I know you, you wouldn't have cared if he had given you a plastic ring."
"Kitty! For crying out loud, girl, that is the real reason! Okay, so maybe Ah'm being vain, but you know!" She floundered and waved her hands helplessly.
Kitty raised one eyebrow.
"What?" Clipped Rogue.
"You tell me. Like, the truth, perhaps?"
Rogue turned away, and paused, her eyes distant, as she weighed her choices.
"Fine," she suddenly sighed, "What's mah name?"
"Rogue," Kitty quipped and shot her a puzzled look.
"And what initial is on the pendant?"
" 'M' – oh. Oh."
"Yes," snapped the southerner. "Yes!"
She refused to say anymore, and became vividly interested in the many posters littering the room, some dating from far back.
"What exactly is wrong with Marie?" Kitty asked, after a few moments.
"It's not mah name." Rogue closed her eyes, "It was. But now, Marie is dead. Nobody knows her."
"It's just that," Rogue cut her off, "Why did he get the 'M'? He never calls me Marie and Ah don't think he realised his mistake until Ah accidentally told him not to call me Marie. And that makes it ten times worse. Remember what Ah was talking about a few days before? Our relationship ain't as strong anymore, Kitty- Kat. Ah know he loves me, but it feels, at some moments, that he hardly knows me "
"You love him, right?" Kitty forced Rogue to meet her eyes.
"Course, just occasionally – sometimes, more as if he were mah brother."
"If I had a brother that would seriously sound like ten times worse," Kitty mused, running a hand through her hair before straightening the green sheets slightly.
But Rogue was on a roll. It felt good to get this off her chest. A burden was being lifted, one that she didn't even notice she had been carrying until today.
"There's no spark. He's so predictable, yet that's mainly because everyone's so used tah us being together. We're the perfect couple, yet we're not. Sometimes Ah want something more. And then Ah feel so guilty, Ah mean how many boys would put up mah power? Ah know Ah should be grateful. But then other times, it's almost as if Ah'm on the outside looking in…. into my relationship that is…" Rogue trailed off, "Ah don't know. That annoying voice in mah head has sure got a hell lot louder."
"Leave it. You should go back to bed." She hid her embarrassment well; couldn't believe that she had just voiced her thoughts so easily. She just wanted to be left alone.
Kitty saw through this but nodded slowly and switched off the main lights. Already dressed for the night, she hopped into her unmade bed quickly, and buried deep into the quilts.
Rogue remained lying on the bed. She ignored the lone tear that flowed down her cheek in a steady line.
"Rogue?" Kitty sounded tentative.
"Yeah?" Kitty's voice stirred her into action and Rogue slipped between the sheets, fully dressed, her make-up leaving marks on the pillow.
Kitty closed her eyes.
Rogue paused, and carefully studied her for a moment. Then she shrugged and moved her hand to switch off the bedside light, before snuggling into the sheets. It was a few minutes before she gradually let sleep take its course through the journey of life.
Pity it wouldn't move forward.
A/N: Well, I'm back. Hope y'all liked it. This prologue is only a short measure of what is to come, and I really hope no one is OOC. Still, anyway, don't forget to review!!!
Rogue wakes up one morning only to discover she has traveled three years back in time, to before the discovery of her mutation In fact, everything is the same except for one annoying Cajun who refuses to leave her alone and in turn, screws up every chance she has of returning everything back to normal…. R&R!