Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters or basic storylines from the X-Men. I do, however, own Matthew. And yet, still I am poor beyond belief.
Authors Note: THANK YOU REVIEWERS! You all make me so happy.
Last chapter guys. Thank you all so much for sticking with me through this story. I know it's changed a lot since its very sad beginning, but that's the way of life as well. I'm sad to see it end, but at the same time am ready for it. I hope you all are too, on both counts.
And this chapter is dedicated to EVERYONE WHO EVER REVIEWED THIS STORY! Without that, it would have never moved past that first chapter. Thank you all so much again.
Chapter Twenty: Epilog
"Ya nervous kid?" Logan asked as he leaned against the doorframe leading into Matthew's bedroom. The one that after today, would be his in name only.
"It that obvious?" he asked, smirking over at his older friend, who still looked the same age as he did the day he met him nearly twenty years earlier, adjusting his black tie over his hunter green shirt, and black slacks once again, his black gown hanging around his shoulders.
"Only to those who know ya," the Canuck grinned, walking in and slapping the twenty six year old on the back. "How's your mom taking it?"
"Well considering," Matty sighed and ran a hand through his long auburn hair before reaching over for a rubber band to pull it up into a ponytail. "Muir Island is rather far away."
"So I hear," Logan chuckled. "Moria already have a room waiting for you?"
"Yep, and a microscope," he grinned. Matty, with the help of the Professor and Hank, had managed to get his masters in genetics in almost half the time, and now he was planning on spending his time working on mutant genetics at Muir Island with Xavier's old love, Moria MacTaggert, much to his parents dislike.
"Who wouldn't be?" Matty grinned, looking at Logan with one of his father's smirks. "I'll be helping my own people and doing something I love."
"I'm proud of you kid, you know that?" Logan said after a moment, rising from the bed and holding out his hand towards Matthew, who took it in a hard shake. "You know your mom is too right?"
"Oui, and mon père," Matty said. "And the whole herd that is my family," he added with a grin. "Extended and otherwise."
"And don't you forget it," Logan gave him a hard pat on the back, knocking the young man off balance and sending the gruff old man out the door laughing.
Matty did one final check on his appearance before grabbing his cap from the dresser and heading down the stairs of their rather large, southern French style home. He was surprised to find Serena, her long auburn hair, complete with white tips and two dominant streaks going through the middle leaning against the banister, popping her gum and regarding him closely with a pair of red on black eyes, dressed in her usual Goth attire, which today included a pair of black combat boots under a pitch black corseted dress, the corset part a deep gray color with a black skirt, and the whole thing covered with black lace.
"Mamma and daddy are outside trying to keep the boys off one another," the twenty-year-old Goth stated, tugging her wrist length black lace gloves tighter against her skin. Her power, very similar to her mothers, involved entering people's psyches through skin-to-skin contact. While she did not absorb them, the touch combined with her father's natural empathy, which all the LeBeau children had inherited, allowed her to leave her victims more than a little mentally damaged. She could control it well enough, but not usually when emotional, and her brother graduating and preparing to leave, well it didn't get much more emotional than that.
"What are they arguing about now?" Matty asked, placing the cap on his baby sister's head, earning an eye roll.
"Who's going to drive us there," she replied, referring to their two sixteen-year-old twin brothers, Adrien and Christian, whose powers both included empathy as well as the ability for one of them to absorb a persons energy and the other to use it, such as the time when Adrien caused Hank to pass out while Christian blew up half the danger room, including sending Logan through a wall, across campus.
"Merde," Matty muttered, rolling his eyes.
"Yeah, especially since they want to take the blackbird," Serena added with a hint of a smile. They grinned at each other for a moment, sharing a moment before she sighed. "So you really leaving huh?"
"Bags packed and ready to go. You're flying me remember?" he teased her a little, not missing the sadness in her eyes. They had been extremely close growing up, facing different villains and challenges with their parents, and helping out with their twin brothers. All of those who lived in the LeBeau house close though, the normal sibling rivalry rarely existing, except of course with the twins.
"Don't remind Mamma of that," Serena sighed, walking over and lacing her arm through her brothers as they started walking towards the front door, her still wearing his cap. "She's been crying half the morning."
Matty cringed. "Yeah I know."
"She'll be fine though," Serena quickly stated. "She's a survivor," they shared a smile, both thinking back to seven years earlier when they had almost lost her to the legacy virus. If it hadn't been for Logan forcing her to absorb him, they probably would have. Their father had been a mess then, and so had the children really. It had been Jean and Scott who had pulled them through though. Taking all of the children to their small home on the other side of the Xavier Institute grounds, letting them cry, and worry and play as well with Nathan and Rebecca, their son and daughter.
"I know she is," he replied. He knew why this was so hard for her too. They hadn't been apart since he was brought back to them, and the thought of it happening now scared her as well as Remy, and to tell the truth, Matty too.
"Besides, the team won't be the same without you," Serena said, trying to lighten the mood. "You know Nathan's going to be pushing us into double time sessions and Gustav is going to be impossible," she added, referring to Ororo and Kurt's twelve-year-old son.
"You can deal," Matthew grinned. "Besides, the little blue runt's afraid of you," he added in a teasing voice.
"You say that like there are people who aren't," Serena growled, her eyes filled with mirth as they made it outside to find their mother holding her two youngest boys, both of whom were the spitting image of their father, apart, scolding them while Remy, in his blood red silk shirt and black dress pants, his ever present trench coat already in place after all these years, tried not to laugh. It was a rather comical site as she stood there in her white high-heeled sandals, yellow sundress with small pink roses and her hair pulled up into a bun.
Standing on the side of the porch watching the whole scene with entertained smiles was Mercy, Henry, Alexis and Jean Luc. Tante Mattie had died two years earlier of heart disease, and it still choked everyone up to be there without her, but none more than Remy. He knew that she would have been so proud of his son today as he turned, noticing that Matty and Serena had finally come out.
"Dere be de homme of de hour!" he exclaimed, as his wife released their youngest boys, glaring at both of them before walking over behind her husband, who was already hugging Matthew. Remy, like his father, had aged well, with only a bit of gray running through his long hair, and a few wrinkles from laughing and smiling as much as he did. He'd quite smoking, years ago, and hadn't picked up a stick since, much to Rogue's delight, except for the occasional cigar on poker night with the boys, that she pretended not to know about. He was still as tall and muscular as ever, although Rogue liked to tease him that he was developing a slight potbelly where his firm six-pack had once been.
"Mah perfect little boys all grown up," Rogue said, tears lacing her voice as she leaned over and pulled him into a hug. She was still just as beautiful, although there seemed to be more white in her hair than auburn as of late and she had a few wrinkles round her eyes and mouth, from years of laughter. The illness earlier had left her body sorely deteriorated, and she had never been able to get back the muscle mass she once had, and even some of her strength, but to Remy she was still as beautiful as the day they had attended their first dance together.
"Been grown up Mamma," he replied, hugging her just as tightly.
"No mattah what ya think, yer still mah baby," she smiled, tears in her eyes as they pulled back, giving each other a kiss. "Now, lets git this show on the road then."
"Where are all the others?" Matthew asked, relieved to see his father slide behind the steering wheel of their Durango, his aunt, uncle, cousin and grandfather getting in their own van after having congratulated him and shared hugs and kisses.
"They went on ahead to get our seats," Christian said, pouting as he and Adrien climbed into the back, both dressed in black slacks like their father and brother, with Christian in a cobalt blue shirt and Adrien in a silver one.
"Don't worry petite," Remy said, starting the engine and pulling out of the driveway, heading towards the auditorium where the graduation ceremony was to be held. "Dey wouldn't miss dis fer de world."
From the stands of the huge stadium, the occupants of the Xavier Institute watched on in pride as Matthew Remy LeBeau received his master's degree in genetics. About a dozen cameras flashed in that area alone as they all tried to capture every second of the moment.
Scott and Jean sat next to the right of the Professor. They had been married for a bout eighteen years now and had eighteen-year-old Nathan and fifteen-year-old Rebecca, who were the spitting images of their parents. Both had aged well, although Scott's hair was almost completely gray, which he blamed on his two children, who were currently cheering amongst the loudest of the assembled group for one of their closest friends.
Kurt and Ororo had married not long after Rogue and Remy and were blessed with a son, Gustav, who was a very rambunctious blue skinned teleporting weather dude, as he called himself, at fifteen (AN: Think Kurt from Evolution.). They sat next to Hank and his fiancé Lorena, both blue men wearing image inducers to conceal her appearance. Hank had met Lorena at a medical conference four years earlier, and while she was not a mutant, she was not closed-minded either. She was a well-known surgeon and had become a stable figure at the institute, and three months after Hank had popped the question, she had found out that they were two months pregnant. The wedding was going to be in a couple of weeks, right before Matthew would leave for the Island, and both couldn't have been happier about that and their expected little miracle.
Logan, who had maintained his close friendship with Matthew over the years, wiped at his eyes, causing his current girlfriend, a young purple haired Asian psychic named Betsy Braddock to roll her eyes at him, calling him a big softy before kissing his cheek gently. (AN: I was reading a story a long time ago with this paring and loved it way too much, so hear it is again.)
Kitty, who was working with the group at Muir Island and had come down for the ceremony, sat with her long-term boyfriend, former British spy and mercenary Peter Wisdom. They seemed happy, although they did argue regularly and had yet to tie the not, much to Kitty's disapproval. They had wound up together not long after Piotr had been killed by the Legacy Virus six years earlier and had been together ever since. Their three-year-old daughter Molly sat bouncing happily on her father's knee, a small stuffed purple dragon clutched tightly in her hands. (AN: Mellissarxy1 this part is for you!)
Jubilee, who was currently teaching at the Institute and living the single life, and loving it as she never let anyone forget, sat making faces at Molly while holding her video camera out, capturing the whole thing on film, happy that finally, she could do so without destroying the expensive machine.
Even Bobby sat there, next to Jubilee, watching her out of the corner of his eye with a smile. After Lorna and several other girls after her, had broken his heart, he had returned to the only place he had a chance of being welcomed to, and was surprised to find out that he was. By everyone, including the LeBeau's, who insisted on having him over to dinner the very night he returned. He was fortunate enough to get past his anger, and the feelings of attraction he had towards Rogue to be her and Remy's friend, and had become a great confidant to their twin boys. His only goal now, besides being a good roll model and teacher at the school, was to get Jubilee to try the dating thing again.
As for the Professor himself, he watched on with a look of indescribable pride in his eyes. Matthew, despite his early mutation had insisted on going to public school, and had done so up through college, attending classes at the Institute in the afternoons and evenings. He wanted to be integrated with the rest of his non-mutant peers, and had insisted on it, getting his parents full support as well as a lot of respect from the elder members. He had also been an active member of the X-Men team since he turn fifteen, and planned to continue on with the good fight through the Muir Island team. And he was strong enough to leave his close net family behind to study genetics at the finest lab in the world in order to help his fellow mutants. To Charles, Matthew was his dream, living and breathing, and he was fortunate enough to be alive today to watch him graduate.
And as Rogue and Remy sat there, amongst their family and friends; their hands clasped together and Rogue's head leaning on Remy's shoulder, watching their son walk across that stage, they couldn't be happier.
Authors Note: I hope that covered everything and wrapped it up nicely. Thanks again to everyone who reviewed. You made it all worthwhile. Now let me know if you liked the end, for old times sake.