From the Outside Looking In

From the Outside Looking In

Author's Notes: Please be gentle with me! This is my first fanfic outside of anime fandom. Please forgive any cheesiness. This fic will focus on X-Man (Nate Grey) and Threnody and takes place between issues 74 and 75. This idea may have already been done, but I wouldn't know because I don't read a lot of fanfics. Onto the story!

Threnody pulled the hood of her blue jacket further down to cover more of her face. A few strands of dark curly hair escaped the cover and flew around her face with the wind. She wrapped her arms around herself in her small attempt to protect herself from the cold. Her blue jacket, topped with a short black leather one, wasn't enough protection in this harsh weather.

She pressed onward, her apartment building nearly in sight. She coughed loudly, her entire body shaking. She had become very ill lately, and had stayed that way. Of course, her health had been slowly deteriorating ever since she stopped absorbing such large amounts of death energy, ever since she had left... him.

She mentally cursed herself. Why was he still so deeply inbedded in her thoughts? How had he so easily krept into the folds of her heart, and stayed there without budging even though she now had no idea where he actually was? She should have been over him by now. Men had come and gone from her life and were easily forgotten, their influence quickly tossed aside. But one person had held onto her spirit, and she knew that she could never escape that grip.

Her thoughts were interrupted by a piercing whistle coming from a nearby alley. She stopped and turned to look. Three figures were standing there, their faces shaded by the two walls beside them. She narrowed her eyes slightly and began walking again.

"Hey, wait up!" one of them called, running out of the alley and grabbing her by the arm.

She turned to face him with an icey glare.

"Don't you want to talk to us?" the second man asked, running up to them.

"I don't commune with idiots." she said frankly, jerking her arm free. She continued walking, but didn't get very far before she was tackled by one of the men.

"Pretty girl thinks she's too good for us, huh?" the man muttered into her ear.

The other two helped him to drag her back into the alley from which they came. As soon as she got a chance, Threnody pulled away from them and a glowing pink sphere of light formed in her right hand. "I'm warning you, don't mess with me!" she said firmly, silently praying that the display would be enough to frighten them off. She was running dangerously low on death energy and honesly didn't know if she had enough to kill a flea.

"She's a freakin' mutie!" one of them screamed, rushing forward back-handing her across the face. As she fell to the ground she released a blast of energy, effectively knocking of of the men unconcious. This seemed to only anger the other two as they began kicking and punching at her.

She tried to remain calm. She was used to situations like these, having lived in New York City for quite some time now. Alley attacks weren't uncommon and she'd been beaten up by thugs before, who had taken her money (what little she had) and ran. She only wished that she had been healthier, stronger, now that the attackers knew she was a mutant. They would probably kill her, beat her until she was nothing more than a broken, bloody mess on the concrete.

But Threnody didn't fear death, she didn't even fear pain. Her life had been short, lonely, and sad. Quite frankly, life had nothing to offer her anymore, and as she felt herself fading into death, her only wish was that she could see him once again, and look into his crystal blue eyes. It was in those eyes that she had, for the first time, sensed an understanding, a connection to another living soul. It was the first time she hadn't felt alone.

Just as she was opening her arms to embrace death, a bright, golden light formed between her and the men. In the light appeared a man, who's features were blurred both by the blinding light, and Threnody's own dazed state.

In the blink of an eye, both men were on the ground, looking up hopelessly at the man. "W-who are you?" one of them asked weakly.

"I'm just a man protecting his tribe." he said.

Threnody suddenly became alert. That voice! Was it the one she had so longed to hear?

"Tribe?" the other man questioned.

"All mutants are my tribe, and I'm their shaman."

Threnody placed her hands on the wall behind her and used it to pull herself up to her feet. "Nate?" she asked, her voice strangely high-pitched and cracked.

The man turned around, eyes wide. "That voice... those psi-patterns..." he whispered, reaching forward and pushing back the hood of her jacket.

The hood fell around her shoulders and her silky hair was free to flow in the light breeze. Her cocoa eyes stared up at him wonderingly. "Nate... what's happened to you?"

"Me? What about you? You left me alone with about a hundred zombies after you. I had no idea what had happened to you!"

She lowered her eyes. "I'm sorry, Nate. I just... ran into somethings that I didn't want to involve you in. You had enough danger on your own."

"Thren, you know I wanted to help you. You know I..." he stopped himself, diverting his eyes from her face, "cared about you." he finished.

She looked back up at him. "You're so different. What happened?"

"Let's just say that I discovered a lot of things about myself, and about our world, these past few months. Some things I wish I hadn't discovered, but it's those same things that saved countless worlds."

Threnody opened her mouth to speak, to question what he was saying, or at least get more clariy on what he was talking about, but she hesitated. She quickly decided that it would be best not to ask. "So, will you be staying now? Will you stay with me?"

Nate looked at her sadly. "I'm sorry, Thren. I'm a shaman now, and a shaman must exist outside the tribe. I can't stay here with you."

Threnody stepped closer to him. "But that's not fair! You'll be alone for the rest of your life!"

"I know. That's a sacrifice I chose to make, for the bennefit of all mutants, including you."

"Don't give me that crap! Since when do you think on such a universal level?!"

"Since I found out just how badly the universe needed me."

Threnody became silent for a moment, staring at him with large, wet eyes. Then she spoke. "So that's it then?"

"I'm sorry. My duties as shaman come before everything else."

"Even me?" she asked.

Nate looked her in the eyes. "... Even you."

Threnody pulled the hood of her jacket back over her head. "I understand." she said, walking away from him. She walked out of the alley and then continued down the street, toward her apartment.

Nate watched her until she was out of site, then slowly faded out. Before he was completely gone however, he left one last telepathic message to Threnody: "I'm sorry."


© 2001

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