Disclaimer: Haven't, don't and will never own the X-men. :(
So close I can taste it…
"We're stronger in the places that we've been broken." - Ernest Hemingway
"I no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. But I was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. Not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because your combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together." — Lisa Kleypas
"Loneliness leads to nothing good, only detachment. And sometimes the people who most need to reach out, are the people least capable of it." — Adelle DeWitt, Dollhouse
Why does everyone I know have t'be so damn noisy all th' time! It's the first thing Remy thinks as he wakes up, sorting the voices in his, admittedly, foggy mind. It was hard to think beyond the noise, the voices whispering, the beeping of machines. Time seemed too slow, his thoughts trying to reach each other while wading through mud. For a few moments before he was able to actually open his eyes there was no past, no future, only the omnipresent now and his inability to understand his impatience.
There was something he had to do.
He could feel it, somewhere in those parts of himself that weren't confused or limited by thoughts and consciousness.
He shouldn't be wherever he was, because there was something he had to do and he was certain it was somewhere else.
"I think he's waking up."
The voice reaches out to him, pulling him out of his daze a little faster. He knows that voice. He knows he knows it, but he still can't seem to place it…
"Well it's about damn time! I swear I was about t'start slappin' th' boy if he didn' have th' good sense to start showin' signs of life!"
He definitely knew that voice. Mercy, his mind supplies after a few seconds. His sister in law. His name was Remy, he was an X-man, he used to be a Thief. He was trying to save…
"Rogue?" He means to ask them more, at the very least to form a full and coherent sentence, but whatever damage he'd sustained from the less than kind combination of Sabertooth and Sinister added to whatever painkillers he'd likely been doped with made it difficult to remember how to use multiple words at a time.
"She's… alive, she's okay Remy, honestly."
Oh yeah? He asks in his head, trying to move and finding it nearly impossible at first, if she's so okay why'd ya hesitate? "Truth." He demands, managing to open his eyes at least, blinking them into focus. Mercy, Kitty and a guy he doesn't know (blond, young, not an X-man or a thief) are standing by his bedside. Well, sight was certainly progress, something he could feel good about, but what about the rest of his body? He almost misses the concerned look that passes between his audience, but he doesn't. That can mean only one thing really, whatever news they have isn't good, whatever the words are that make up the truth he asked for were not words he wanted to hear. They were actively in the process of debating how much to tell him without actually saying anything to each other. Not good. There was no way he could trust anything they said to him now, now with that look drifting around in his head. Rogue was alive, and that was just about the best thing he could know at the moment, but from their lengthening silence her condition was likely far from stable, like they might have said she's alive right now. That left a lot of room for him to fill in the blanks.
He managed to sit up, the guy protested but Remy didn't grace him with any attention. Moving was still a little… fuzzy, like he'd been drinking for a while, he felt sedated, numbed. He was surprised to find himself strapped (albeit loosely) to the bed. Did he fight when they brought him here? Or did they anticipate him fighting when they tried to keep him here? Fools, either way.
"Where is she?" His voice doesn't even sound like him, as thick and threatening as it was quiet and kind of broken.
"Lay back Remy, let the healer do his business." Mercy nods at Kitty who grabs a little remote on a wire and presses a button. Remy follows the cord to his I.V. Sedatives?
Whatever it is he's not willing to risk slipping back into the darkness, not before he knows what happened. Not before he can see the consequences of his actions, the actions that led them all here. With an easy looking movement that was in fact very hard for him to pull off Remy deftly removed the I.V. from his wrist, swinging his legs over the edge of the bed in the process. He was well bandaged, a little light headed. Blood loss he assumed. The wounds themselves weren't nearly as serious as they had been when he'd first blacked out. Thanks to the healer he assumed, nodding absently to the as yet unknown young man standing awkwardly in the corner.
"Remy…" Kitty that time, trying to reason with him. Both women seemed pretty unsteady dealing with him, but that was fine. That was an advantage Remy sorely needed until he could think clearly again.
"Where. Is. She." He asked again, meeting the eyes of both of them in turn, letting them know that despite his current condition he was not letting them out of an answer.
Another look between them, silently debating once again what they should say.
Just say it! He begs them silently. Tell me how bad she is. Tell me the worst of it. Knowin' can't be any worse than sittin' here wonderin' how bad it is. Do a kindness and put a man outta his misery…
Better to tear the band aid off and get it over with than take solace in the drugs and the darkness and the ignorance they offered. He had to know, how bad was she?
"She's… she's out of the woods Remy," Kitty steps up to take the lead, putting a hand on his shoulder and forcing him back onto the pillows. He's still too weak to stop her. "Logan's with her but her powers aren't working. Beast thinks it's a defence mechanism, the body automatically shuts down anything it considers non-essential to concentrate on protecting the vital organs. The second she turns back on she'll be better than you, but she hasn't done that yet… and she hasn't woken up, she's…"
"She's in a coma Remy." Mercy took over. "According to the scans, both mechanical and psychic, activity is intermittent and weak. Her odds aren't terrible, but they're not good either. She… she may not wake up from this Rem."
He soaked in that information for a few seconds, letting the guilt and worry and denial come to a cozy equilibrium in his brain. "Declan… The Dream King could find her again, we can pull her out like last time, show her the way…"
Kitty sat down on the bed and took his hand into her own, tearing up as she did. "It's not that kind of problem Remy, Declan and Jean have both tried, but it's more physical than mental. It's not a psychic problem anymore. I'm sorry Remy, I really am. We tried so hard and now…" Covering her face with her hands Kitty dissolves into tears. The stress and the worry overtaking her now that the adrenaline of fighting wasn't there to pull her up and keep her going.
Despite everything they'd already done, everything they were still willing to do…
There was nothing left. No action they could take, no plan they could devise. They, the most powerful and determined people they knew of, could do nothing but wait it out.
"You're still pretty banged up too," Mercy cut in, swallowing some tears herself on behalf of Kitty. "Triage here took care of the worst, for both of you, but the blood loss was pretty serious."
"I tried to stop Sabertooth by throwing my chest and kidneys at his fists. Blood loss was expected." Remy cracked instinctually, his default reaction to emotional stress had always been to lighten the mood, to distract himself.
"Yeah and I got a real bone to pick with you over this whole debacle you damn…" Mercy trails off at a not so subtle cough from Triage and pulls her temper back in check. "Another time though, wouldn't want to upset Triage." She meant it too. Remy threw the young healer another look, wondering just what his abilities were beyond healing that was keeping Mercy from heaping the verbal abuse she loved so much on her favourite target. He added it to the list of questions he should ask when he was more inclined to care about the answers.
His eyelids fluttered briefly, his whole body suddenly feeling about two times heavier than it was. Triage gently forced him back against the pillows, speaking to Mercy and Kitty as he did so, but Remy couldn't understand the words. He was slipping out again, back into the dark. He feels them pull the restraints tighter, making it so next time he wouldn't be able to sit up. His only comfort as he drops out completely is knowing how futile an effort it's going to be once he has his strength back.
"You didn't say anything about Belladonna." Kitty comments as the two women left the sickroom to let everyone know Remy was okay. She practically sneers the name and isn't sorry or embarrassed about it. She doesn't care if it's childish.
"That's a conversation I'll save for when he's stronger."
"I still can't believe he agreed to it."
"Sure you can. What wouldn't that boy do for that girl?"
"I'm still having trouble believing that too. They just… fell so hard, so fast. I mean, sure circumstances helped, but still. A few weeks ago nobody would have guessed." Except for me, kinda. "If he marries that woman, then what? He rabbits? She kills him? Somebody else kills him? Or her? Secret civil war all across New Orleans? I don't know anything about anything going on here between all you people and even I know that there's no way this ends well for anybody so how can anybody think this is a good idea?"
"Then why?! Why are none of your people stopping it, why is Belladonna forcing the issue?"
"Because she wants to. She wants to see how far she can push, it's not about love or marriage, it's not about the Thieves and the Assassins. This is all about Belladonna and Remy. It's personal, too personal for either of them to see the effect it'll have on anybody else. It doesn't help that their fathers still think it's a good idea."
"It doesn't make any sense."
"Well, the girl is closer to crazy than makes no nevermind."
"Why would Remy go along with it?"
"Well, the boy ain't exactly sane himself, strictly speaking."
"You're not making this any clearer for me."
"Never said I was going to try. Trust me kid, just let it go for now. We can make up our minds about it once the guns are drawn and the dust has settled."
"Do you think somebodies going to start something?"
"Given enough time somebody always does. Hundreds of years of civil war, as you put it, can't be maintained without a little effort, on both sides."
Remy watches her quietly, letting his eyes drift from her hair to her face to the array of machines hooked into arms, chest and head. Reading her vitals and brain activity, diligently reporting every minutia of her physical health to any set of curious eyes capable of understanding the information. Remy could, for the most part, put it together for himself. Even if he didn't already know, the word would have been in his head now regardless; coma.
He had her back. Briefly.
Now he may have lost her again, only this time there was nothing he could do about it.
He ginned, berating himself for thinking like that. Rogue was a strong person, stronger than most. She'd wake up eventually.
She volunteered to go to hell to save a bunch of kids she'd never met. She fought, the entire time, threw wrenches into Sinisters plans at every opportunity. She'd been down and defeated, angry and embittered, but she never gave up. She outmanoeuvered one of the most brilliant minds in the world (however evil and crazy), and pulled herself up from the dust into freedom, a victor. What did he do? Panic, self-destruct and make poor choices, mostly. He showed her where the road was when she got a little lost, but she'd walked the damn thing herself in the end.
So yeah, maybe there was nothing he could do about her coma, but it's not like she needed him to be anything more than there for her anyway. She'd wake up, he was confident in that fact, and he'd be waiting, in whatever way he could.
Tomorrow morning he'd marry Belladonna, as per the letter of their agreement, tomorrow afternoon… well, with the X-men in town who could really predict?
Funny how a thing that seemed so final, so terrible, a few days ago would now seem so insubstantial.
Rogue let herself sleep the deep sleep of healing. Maybe it was an echo of Declan's power in her head but she knew she was sleeping and she was deliberately keeping herself there. Deep enough that she could feel the telepaths probing the waters of her mind for a reaction without feeling any real inclination to give one.
She needed this. Her mind needed it as much or more than her body. Comforting as the cool dark waters were, she knew she wasn't alone in them. It wasn't only psyches swimming around like so many fish, there was something bigger too, someone more substantial, but still foreign to her.
The girl Rogue had touched under Sinisters control. The girl she'd touched too long.
She'd need Xavier to deal with that. She couldn't on her own. She had trouble enough with the psyches and they were nothing but skinny shadows next to Ms. Marvel.
Ms. Marvel. Who was actually an Avenger initiate. Ms. Marvel who went deep under cover to smoke Sinister out and prove herself, but she'd been overconfident and reckless. Ms. Marvel who, like Rogue, went willingly enough to save others, but hadn't been properly prepared to deal with Sinister, hadn't been able to withstand his telepathic tampering. She'd fought him anyway, as much as she could, in any way she could. She was a hero. An honest to god, government sanctioned, nationally celebrated hero.
And Rogue had as good as killed her.
This just was not her best month ever.
But that would all keep for another time. Right now she rested. Right now she settled into the fact that she was Rogue, rejoiced in it, let it soak through her body and soul to rebuild the things that were broken, the things she'd broken in her misguided attempts to be normal. She was finally Free. In control (of her body if not her power). Recovering.
She couldn't deny that she was also stalling for time and that she knew exactly why she was stalling. She didn't know what was waiting for her out there in the real world. She didn't know how the X-men were going to react to everything that had happened. She didn't know what had happened to Remy. She didn't know what would happened when the Avengers found out what had happened to Carol and came calling for some answers. Wolverine knew a lot about them, even without interrogating his psyche she had enough of an impression of the group to know that she was in some potentially serious trouble. She didn't know if there were casualties. She didn't know if her friends would ever be able to look her in the eyes again. She didn't know a lot. And in the absence of knowledge was the fear of knowledge. Of knowing answers that she didn't want.
So she stayed asleep, she gave herself more time to steel herself for the inevitable conflicts while simultaneously berating herself for needing it.
When she finally felt like she couldn't stay under any longer she let herself drift slowly back into the waking world. One sense at a time. After the strange absence of sensation offered to her from her stubbornly maintained coma, feeling her body (real and physical) around her was odd. Even before she opened her eyes she felt herself subtly twitching her feet and flexing her fingers, getting used to the feel, testing for any lingering or potentially permanent damage.
She seemed to be whole. She knew she was probably doped up with painkillers but all of her limbs and organs seemed to be present and accounted for. It was bright, she knew that before she opened her eyes too, whatever room she was in was filled with natural light, but she still couldn't guess at the time.
She was alone, she could that much out without help. There was nobody in the room with her, the insistent beeping of a machine next to the bed was the only sound, no footsteps or voices in range.
Safe enough then to stretch and collect her thoughts before deciding on a course of action before one was decided for her. Whatever was coming, whether conversation or confrontation, she wanted to be the initiator. If Sinister taught her anything it was the danger in being a passenger of your own life.
Blinking and squinting while her eyes adjusted Rogue cautiously sat up and swung her legs over the side of the bed. She felt normal, still tired despite her prolonged convalescence and a little fuzzy around the edges due to meds, but otherwise she felt better than she expected to feel.
Clearly she was not fully healed, her various injuries, despite whatever mutant healing she must have been given, were still tight and unhappy with her. She cringed as she pushed herself to stand and supported her own weight with a body still feeling more than a little abused by recent events. She pressed a hand against her chest, could feel the slightly raised skin that was the scars that had been the ugly red wounds left by Wolverines claws.
Her powers must not have been working. Otherwise Logan would have healed her instantly and completely. Were they working now she wondered? She didn't know and wasn't about to find someone to test them on.
She couldn't have been out that long. For one thing she was still in the South, if she'd been out for more than a couple days the X-men would have moved her back to Xaviers by now.
Why stay at all? If she'd been in really bad shape they may have had to keep her here until she stabilised, until whatever healing she'd received really took hold and started catching up to the damage done. Meds and trauma weakened her shields, she knew without actually knowing that one of the inmates was a healer and would have been the one to help her. She quizzed her mind for the answers, she would have touched him at some point in time, Sinister was thorough in her exorcises. Triage, she thought triumphantly, a touch based healer, but he could only do it in spurts. His power was enough to keep someone alive but not so strong that he could do more than triage the worst of the damage. His power was a bandage, in other words, and not a cure. It could stop the bleeding, but left the scar, could also transfer the pain of one person to another, temporarily of course. She was so unbelievably glad he was close enough to make a difference for her.
Now where was everyone? She let that question distract her as she pulled on a pair of scrubs someone had thoughtfully left folded on a chair in lieu of the paper hospital gown she'd initially been wearing. Bruising was very evident all over her body but already fading for the most part, only where Sinister had shot her was still large and purplish and ugly. The bandage wrapped tightly around her chest was hiding the worst testament to the damage she'd taken. Any other marks left from her fights and failures were smaller things, and she was content to ignore them.
Moving felt good, she decided as she walked to the door and peered out into the hallway. She didn't think she was in a hospital, not a real one anyway, and since she wasn't back in New York either she assumed that she was probably in some kind of Thief safe house.
Surely the X-men would have kept at least one of their own number with her though, just in case. Even if they didn't the thieves would have had guards on the property. So where was everyone?
Was there another emergency? Did Sinister return to finish the fight?
Was she still asleep?
She felt cold all over and thought hard as she walked, slow and limping, down the hallway, using the wall for support. What if she was, what if she'd inadvertently trapped herself in her mind again, lost in an illusion. Goddammit, it couldn't be that could it? Last time she'd done it she hadn't remembered anything, this time she would have been happier had she been able to forget a little more. She had to awake. Right?
But on the other hand where was Remy? After everything that had happened she had honestly expected him to be somewhere nearby when she woke up, her eyes felt hot with disappointment and a growing sense of general concern and anxiety.
"Oh thank God!" Rogue breathed, sagging against the wall again, in relief this time. "Jean?" She could have thought it at the older redhead, but Jean would hear her either way and she was suddenly uncomfortable with how quiet it was around her, she needed a voice, even if it was just her own, to share the hallway with her.
Are you okay? You've been out for a few days. We were worried, when even Declan couldn't contact you...
"Ah'm fine Jean," Her accent was a lot thicker, the drugs and the stress she assumed. "Where is everyone? What's going on? Is there another fight?" She doesn't know how, but if there is she will be there to help this time.
No, no fight, it's over Rogue. Declans people are supposed to be there…
"Why? Why aren't my people here, or Remys, I'm an X-man in a Theif's house, where does Declan fit into that? IS everybody else okay? What happened after I went down? What happened to Sinister? Did you find Ms. Marvel? Is the Professor here too? Where's Remy?"
Rogue slow down! I'm sorry, I'm sorry we're not there for you, you're scans were improving but nobody thought you'd wake up for another day or two. Everybody's fine, Rogue, you and Gambit were the only real casualties but we got to you in time, though Storm did have to shock you a few times until you stabilised. Sinister got away, the bastard, Rogue can practically taste the genuine disgust and rage that colours Jeans voice and growls a little herself in solidarity. Ms. Marvel is… the professor took care of everything, she's getting the best care available and the doctors are hopeful. It wasn't your fault Rogue. Nobody blames you…
Rogue scowled but didn't respond. Guilt was an old friend at this point, she'd add Carol to her other nightmares, complete with the question of whether it made her a worse person that she took some comfort from the fact that it was her nightmare, and not a taken fear courtesy of the psyches. "So where is everyone then? Why're we still in the south? Where's remy?" It hadn't escaped her notice that Jean hadn't answered those questions yet.
Jean hesitated and Rogue rolled her eyes. Clearly the telepath was afraid that Rogue wasn't going to like whatever she said next, but Rogue was too damn tired and confused to be patient anymore. "Answer the questions Jean, stalling ain't doin' nothin' but testin' my temper and it's been worn pretty thin lately as it is."
We're not that far, actually, at a church…
"A church?" What in the hell? "Why?" Rogue reached the front door and pushed it open, three teenagers stood smoking on the steps, jumping in shock when she emerged, the looks on their faces alternating between guilty recognition and excitement. She recognized them as inmates, though better dressed now in civilian clothes. One she recognized a little more strongly. "Caine." She greeted, and the larger guy laughed and bounded up the front steps to slap her on the back, his happiness was too sincere for her to hold the jolt of pain it caused against him.
"Rogue! Finally! Damn, but the others are going to freak when they see you up and about. Man, you should have seen it, the King frigging whipped us all into your own personal army, that power of his is brutal but it did things to make us better, let us slip our collars and then we-"
"Hold on," Rogue took a step back, all too aware of how much of her personal space he was invading at that specific moment and she didn't have gloves though at least the scrubs she was wearing had long sleeves. She really needed to get some proper clothes. "You know where th'others are?"
"Yeah," he answered, "I don't really get it myself, given what everyone was saying about the two of you, but these people all seem a little off, you know, they're not normal. I thought we were strange enough but, damn, your people and his make us seem like the fucking brady bunch."
"The two of us? My people and his?"
Rogue… there's a warning in Jeans tone, but Rogue ignores it. Caine, for all that she barely knew him, was more likely to tell her everything, uncensored and unabridged. Rogue wasn't blocking Jean to be polite, but it didn't mean she was going to listen to her anymore. not when she had a more forthcoming source.
"Yeah, you know, you and Gambit."
Rogue felt a sharp sensation in her chest, "Caine, what is going on, where are… our people? Where is Gambit?"
Caine blinked, only now seeming to realize that Rogue wasn't being idle or restless, however unsteady she was she was moving and speaking with purpose. "They're all at the church. Gambits wedding."
"Gambits what!? Who's fool enough to hitch themselves to his wagon?"
"Some blond woman, Bella or something."
Belladonna. Memories, unbidden, flared up in her mind. Oh, this was not good. She knew it all too well, there was no way this didn't end a couple kinds of bloody. "He's getting married right now?"
"In a half hour or something."
"Where's the church?"
"Ten minutes down the road."
"Wait!" One of the other inmates, a girl, ran up, grinning from ear to ear. "Surge," she introduced herself, "Technophile, and that's Psion, psychic shielding. We're… I guess we're like you're honour guard, in case something else happens, not that anyone expects it to."
"Surge." Caine, impatient, wanting her to get to the point.
"Right, well, I mean if you're gonna crash a wedding you can't do it in scrubs looking like a warmed over corpse." Rogue felt a sting of offence at that, but since she hadn't actually thought to try and find a reflection to inspect she didn't bother denying her less than peak condition. "We've got some clothes for you, Gambit left them, just go back to your room and give me a minute to get it together."
"Thanks, really, but I'd rather just go now and get this done with."
"Trust me Rogue, you want change into your new clothes."
Rogue didn't know if it was the lingering drugs, the lingering physical trauma, the lingering psychic distress or her own indefatigable curiosity, but she let Caine help her back to her room. While she waited for Surge she quickly washed her face in the bathroom and ran her fingers through her hair to comb it out some, it was getting long again, she'd have to cut it soon. The water revived her somewhat and she was actually glad she was going to have something other than the hospital garb to wear by the time Surge returned a few minutes later with a few bags tucked under her arms.
"Go keep watch with Psion." Surge ordered Caine, who grunted something in amusement and disappeared. Once she was sure he was gone she turned a more serious expression onto Rogue. "Pride and tough acts aside, are you okay Rogue? You had a lot of people pretty scared for a while."
"I'm good, came out of this a hell of a lot better than I'd any right to, but I want to get to that church Surge, and it's gotta be faster than slow."
"Just get dressed and we're as a good as gone. Don't worry, from what we've been able to see and overhear nobodies happy about what's happening, even if we don't show up I doubt there's nobody else willing to stand up and call the crazy as they see it."
"What are you guys still doing here anyway? I would've thought the X-men would have taken y'all home by now." Rogue asked absently as she pulled the first bag open and peered inside.
"The younger ones and the ones with homes to go back too, yeah, they did. But Declan, well, he and a bunch of the rest of us don't really have anyplace or anyone waiting for us to go back to it. We're homeless. But together, well, together we have a family kind of. We decided to stick it out together, down here. Sinisters base, once its gutted and repurposed, is a lot better than alleys and shelters. We'll figure out what we can do for a living after that."
"Why don't you come to Xaviers in New York." Rogue asked, "he'd welcome all of you. You'd get good educations, room and board, a normal life." As normal as a mutant can hope for anyway.
"Thanks, but no thanks, we don't want to be civilians, but we don't want to be soldiers either. Your friends already gave us that offer. Now hurry up and get dressed."
The first bag held a pair black, boot cut jeans with vines embroidered down the sides in green. Next was a hunter green tank top, soft, but heavy material draping her body cutting right below the waist with more embroidery in a bright golden thread down the middle. There was a shoe box with a pair of wedge boots looking like a mix of cowboy and biker, but the fit was good and the more she looked at them the more she liked them. The largest bag contained a brown leather trench coat, similar to the one Remy always wore, but with a feminine cut, in one of the pockets was a pair of leather gloves (black) and a queen of hearts.
In the other was a black choker with a silver magnolia pendant and an ace of spades, the words 'sorry chere, 'bout everything' scrawled across it like an afterthought.
"Yeah," she scoffed, "we'll see about that Remy." She turned and this time caught her reflection in the mirror the room offered her. She was pale, clearly still in some degree of suffering, but otherwise she looked less like a patient, or a victim and more like someone ready for round two, eager even.
Surge was right. Nobody would have taken her seriously, nobody would have listened to her at all if she'd gone to that church in hospital scrubs too big for her looking half dead. Like this she felt more like herself, her old self, the self she should have allowed herself to be all along. She felt like a badass, plain and simple, as cocky as a fighter pilot. And when one is about to, potentially, kick start a vicious secret war in the middle of a large city populated with criminal elements both many and multi-faceted, well, feeling like a badass was kind of important, for morale if nothing else.
"Alright, I'm dressed," Rogue couldn't help but grin. Do they know I'm comin'? She asked Jean silently.
I'm the only one who knows you're awake so far, I haven't had a chance to tell the others yet.
Good, keep it that way. After all, when would she have another opportunity like this, to make a really good entrance and a hell of a second impression. She was getting tired of always having to catch up, it would be nice, for a change, to be the one riding to the rescue and kicking the door in.
"Let's go." She marched out of the room ahead of Surge, feeling stronger than she did the first time she'd walked down the hallway, her steps more sure. It wasn't until she reached the front door that she had to stop and lean against the wall for a second or two. Badass she may be, but still a recovering badass, she reminded herself to take it easy when she could as she opened the door to walk down the steps.
Psion was already sitting in the driver's seat of a nondescript silver car, idling at the curb. Caine grinned at her as he opened the door to the back seat and handed her in, Surge ducking in on the other side while he claimed the passenger seat up front. "If anyone asks," Psion started as she pulled out of park and peeled into the road, "we did our best to convince you to stay in bed."
So… uh… sorry, yeah.
Commence with the guilt trips, I am a worm before your justifiable frustration with me.