An X-men: Evolution fanfic by Lavender Gaia
Disclaimer: I do not own X-men: Evolution or any of its characters. They are all property of Marvel.
Jean pounded on the door again. "Scott?"
"One second, Jean!" he called back for the third time. She was starting to think they had changed the definition of a second, as she'd been waiting in the hallway for over five minutes.
Another two minutes later the door opened. "Finally!" she scolded him as he ran a hand through his messy brown hair. "What are you doing?"
"Rogue and I were just discussing something," he nodded towards the Southerner who was sitting on his bed. Rogue waved, smirking in that "I've got a secret" way.
"Oh," she frowned at the pair. "What were you talking about?"
"Nothing," they said together, making Rogue's smirk only grow.
Scott leaned against his doorframe, giving her the half smile that usually would have made her melt, if she wasn't so annoyed. "So, what did you need?"
Glancing back and forth between the two, she settled for looking at her boyfriend. "Well, we've barely spent any time together this week. I was wondering if you'd like to go out and get some lunch or something."
"Sorry." He didn't look sorry. "I have some things to do today. Maybe tomorrow?"
Oh, but you have plenty of time to sit around with Rogue and talk about nothing, right? She thought bitterly, but bit her tongue to keep from saying it aloud. "Fine, I…Just whatever, Scott."
Before either of them could say anything else, she turned on her heel and walked downstairs, not caring to listen to what they had to say. Jean retreated to the kitchen; it was one of her favorite rooms in the house, and not because she liked to eat. There was usually something baking and that was comforting, as well as just because the room felt safe and homey.
Ororo was talking to Kitty when the redhead entered the room. "Hello, Jean. I just finished making cookies. Would you like one?"
"Love one." She took it off the plate gracefully, biting in to the chocolatety goodness before taking a seat. "So, what were you guys talking about?"
"I was telling here about my last trip to Northbrook," Kitty shrugged. "Nothing exciting."
Storm picked up a piece of paper lying on the counter and faced the two girls. "Would one of you mind running some errands for me?"
"I will!" Jean jumped up, raising her hand in the air. Kitty glared at her lightly; ever since the younger girl had finally gotten her license (God help them) she'd been eager to drive as much as possible. And while Jean was all for letting her go phase through cars as long as she wasn't on the road, right now she needed this a lot more than Kitty did.
"You can go next time, Kitten," Ororo assured her with a comforting smile.
Kitty sighed, then shrugged and stood up. "It's ok, Scott needed to talk to me anyway. I'll see you guys later."
Jean twitched lightly at Scott's name; Storm noticed. "Is everything ok, dear?"
"I…I'm not really sure, Ororo." She rested her head in her hands and sighed. "It seems that things haven't been clicking with Scott and I lately and I have no idea why. Of course, it could have something to do with the fact that he's always busy. That is, busy with Rogue or busy with Kitty or busy with Amara. Or he's on the phone or not even here at all. He's always out running his private errands."
"You seem rather frustrated with him," Ororo acknowledged lightly.
Jean rubbed her temples. "We always used to tell each other everything. Now I feel as if he's trying to push me away. It hurts."
The older woman nodded. "Did you try to talk to him?"
"I asked him out to lunch. He told me he was too busy," she recalled bitterly.
"Well, take your time on these errands and clear your head. We both know it won't do any good to speak with him while you're angry," she handed over the list as Jean stood up.
"You're right, of course. I'll go get these done. Thanks for listening, Ororo." Jean slipped the piece of paper into her pocket before going to get her keys.
A few minutes later she was climbing in to her SUV and pulling out of the driveway. Not wanting to be alone with her thoughts right now, she pulled a random CD out of the visor holder and slid it into the player. A guitar riff began, followed by:
I'm in love because I know you,
And I'm sorry I don't show you.
She groaned. This was the mix CD someone had made her. She pushed the button to skip the song.
I'm sleeping and right in the middle of a good dream,
When all at once I wake up from something that keeps knocking at my brain.
Before I go insane I hold my pillow to my head and spring up in my bed,
Screaming out the words I dread:
I think I love you!
Once again, her finger sought the "Next" button.
Something strange is happenin' lately,
We no longer see eye to eye.
Time has changed us, rearranged us,
And it leaves me wondering why.
Quickly, she ejected the CD and threw it angrily into the backseat. Maybe she didn't need music after all. After a minute or two, the car was much too quiet again. Electing to turn on the radio this time, a new song filled the space.
Some boys take a beautiful girl,
And hide her away from the rest of the world.
I wanna be the one to walk in the sun.
They wanna have fun.
Just wanna have
That's all they really want...
Jean smiled to herself and drummed her fingers on the steering wheel. This was more like it. Her first stop was the fabric store and picked up the material needed. She finished almost all the errands in the next half hour, deciding to get a cup of coffee before continuing to the nursery to pick up Ororo's new plant.
As usual, the coffee shop was packed. She waited in line for five minutes just to place her order and figured that it would take another ten before she actually got her coffee. Taking a seat at one of the high tables, she tapped her sandal against the leg of the stool.
"Is this seat free?"
Jean looked up quickly. "Taryn…" Glancing to the empty stool at the table, which was probably the only empty seat in the house, she nodded. "Go ahead."
Her ex-best friend sat down next to her and for a minute the two women were silent. Jean was starting to feel bad; they'd had some falling outs, but Taryn had still been her friend for several years. "So, how are you?"
Taryn raised an eyebrow at the small talk. "Good. I wish this place had more workers, but other than that I can't really complain. You?"
"Same…" Jean didn't feel bad about lying to the woman, if only because her lie apparently wasn't very convincing.
"Trouble in paradise? You are still with Scott, right?" Taryn wasn't saying it to be catty; surprisingly enough she sounded interested, if even a tad bit concerned.
The redhead folded her arms across her chest, a scowl reappearing over her face. "The last time I checked we were, but it seems he's forgotten. All he ever does is talk with the other girls or go off someplace by himself! I just can't understand what's with him lately!" Jean blinked in shock at herself. In all honestly, she hadn't meant to rant, least of all to Scott's ex-girlfriend.
Taryn nodded slowly. "Listen, Jean, take this as advice from an old friend who knows what you're going through. Scott's never exactly been one for commitment. The entire time he was with me, he was pining after another girl. What makes you think he won't do it again? I wouldn't be surprised if you found out he wasn't as perfect as you thought."
Jean was silent as a server called, "Number fourty-two!"
"That's me," the black-haired girl checked her bill and stood up. "I'll see you around, Jean."
"Bye…" she whispered, staring at the table and biting her bottom lip. Not a minute later, her number was called and she got her cup. At that moment, all she wanted to do was get out of there. Walking back out to her car, she took a gulp of her coffee, the hot liquid burning down her tongue and throat.
The nursery was close enough that Jean could get to it without having to think much about her driving. Her thoughts were centered on Scott and not for the first time she wished she didn't have too much dignity to take a quick peek inside his head. She understood, of course, that if he wasn't ready to give up on their relationship now that such an invasion of privacy would certainly push him over the edge.
As she waited for the worker at the nursery to get Ororo's new tree, Jean wondered what to do about her predicament. He was driving her crazy and as someone would potentially unstable and dangerous powers, this was never a good sign. "Here you go, miss," the clerk returned with the large pot, handing it over to her.
"Thank you. If you don't mind, could you tell me how long I can wait before getting this home?" she asked. At his confused look, she added, "Long drive."
He nodded understandingly. "It should last a few hours, but the sooner the better."
"Right, of course. Have a nice day." She lifted up the new tree and rested it carefully in the back of her sport utility vehicle. The car started but she didn't head towards the Institute. Instead, there was a small pull-off of the highway that had special meaning to her.
This patch of dirt was almost completely surrounded by trees, but there were enough tire tracks to mark this as a place that wasn't completely deserted. She sat in her car, realizing that other couples had quite possibly come to this spot to seek a quiet refuge, as she and Scott had many times. The overlook was a favorite spot of hers and it was hard to keep from smiling when she remembered the time Kitty and Kurt had stranded then up there.
Turning off the engine, she relaxed in her seat for a few moments. It had never crossed her mind before to doubt Scott. He was her rock, someone she could lean on, the person who would always catch her if she fell, no matter what the circumstances. Yet, now she was teetering on the edge of a cliff, and ultimately wasn't sure if he would be at the bottom waiting for her.
If he needed space she could understand that; her love really was a private person with deep scars, ones that she couldn't begin to heal. Had Scott simply needed time to himself that would make sense and she would relax. But what was his newfound affection with the other girls? Had he become Scott the Playboy?
Sure, sometimes he addressed Amara on whatever she needed help with in the Danger Room and he'd been known to explain modern culture that the Nova Roman didn't understand. But she'd certainly grown into almost full control of her abilities and Bobby offered to help her with anything she didn't understand; including the confusing aspect of modern dating that the Iceman was attempting to help her perfect.
And she understood that Kitty looked up to Scott like a big brother. An extremely overprotective and at sometimes annoying big brother, but one nonetheless. While the intangible woman may have had a crush on him when she'd first arrived, Jean was positive that she'd gotten over it. In fact, Kitty was in a happy relationship with Lance. The two hadn't had an argument for two weeks, a personal record.
Rogue, Jean hated to realize, was a completely different story. She knew Rogue had really liked Scott before and no matter how much she told herself, or tried to convince herself telepathically, or wrote it over and over, she couldn't cement the idea that the Southerner was over her boyfriend. Rogue's smug smirk from earlier made her stomach turn and a nagging voice from the back of her mind reminded her that Scott may have had feelings for her as well.
A cold feeling washed over her: Could Scott be in love with someone else? Would he dare cheat on her? The facts added up. A feeling of complete revulsion overcame her and she struggled to keep down her coffee. She didn't want to think about it; she forced herself not to think about it.
The mental image of Scott holding Rogue, of him finding whatever way he could to get around her powers so he could touch her and kiss her the way he had once with Jean was plastered through her mind, mocking her, taunting her subconsciously. While she wanted him to be happy, she knew that she could never be if he wasn't with her. She loved him too much and though as a young girl she'd made a promise never to rely on a man, she'd never dreamed she would meet someone as wonderful as Scott Summers.
Jean rested her head in her hands and allowed herself to cry for a few minutes. When the tears ceased, she set her mind to what she would do. Going home, she would force Scott to talk to her. If she had to telekinetically hold him in a chair and search his mind telepathically, well, then that's what she would do.
Starting the SUV again, the redhead took off towards her home, wondering lightly if she'd missed dinner with the sun already set. Using her teke, she moved all of the packages into the kitchen where Ororo almost always was. The room was empty though, save for Bobby who was putting a bunch of sodas in a cooler and shooting his ice cubes around it. "Hey, Jean. What's all that stuff?"
"Just errands Ororo wanted me to pick up. Do you know where she is?"
The new mutant shook his head. "No, but Scott said something about you meeting him in the west library when you came in."
Her eyebrows rose well above her startled green eyes. "Really? Did he say what about?"
Bobby shrugged, looking a tad sheepish. "He might've, but the guys and I were kind of busy watching the game. And if I don't get these soda's back they'll fry me. Hey, you didn't happen to get any snacks while you were out, did you?" She floated a large back of potato chips towards him. "Aw, sweet, Jean! Thanks!"
She shook her head in amusement before taking a second to check her reflection on the door of the stainless steel refrigerator. While it wasn't exactly a mirror, it served well enough to tell her that her face wasn't red from crying and her hair wasn't a rat's nest. Satisfied that she looked halfway decent, the X-men walked towards the west wing.
There was no one there, as most of this part of the Institute was used in small doses. In the back of her mind, paranoia reared up. Had he only chosen this part to tell her about his new relationship with Rogue so she wouldn't pitch a fit in front of everyone? The nerve of that man!
Anger flaring, she marched towards the door to the library, opening it up and slamming it behind her as she stormed into the room. "Listen here, Summers, you…what…?"
The lighting of the room was dimmed, accented only by dozens on candles littering every available surface. Alas, there wasn't much available with everything covered in flowers. Every color imaginable was represented, all arranged around several bouquets of her favorite red roses. Petals were sprinkled over the floor and soft music was playing.
To her left, Scott emerged from the shadows. Before she could get a word out, he cupped her chin in one of his large hands and kissed her tenderly. Jean had forgotten how much she loved his kisses. He regretfully pulled away and sank to one knee as Jean whispered, "Oh my god."
There was a small, black velvet box in one hand as he took her palm in his other. "Jean Grey, you mean more to me than any woman in the world. I have loved you since the moment I laid eyes on you, my perfect goddess. If there were ever two people who were meant to be together, truly soul mates, those people could be no other than you and me. I can't imagine living in a world without you."
The tears were openly flowing down her cheeks and she thought her heart would burst as he dropped her hand in order to open the box. A breathtaking gold ring set with a string of diamonds rested in the satin. He looked up at her, smiling. "Jean Grey, will you marry me?"
It took all of her willpower not to burst into sobs as she nodded. "Oh, yes, Scott!"
He removed the ring and slipped it on her left hand; it was a perfect fit. She wrapped her arms around his neck as he stood, taking her up with him. "I love you, Jean."
"I love you too, Scott. Oh, more than I could ever imagine." Her lips fell against his, kissing with a passion that had been mounting in her soul. He responded in kind until the two heard a very loud THUMP outside the door, followed by a collective, "SHHH!"
Scott exchanged a look with his fiancé, whose green eyes were glinting with happiness as she pulled opened the doors. The residents of the institute were standing there, with multiple Jamie's on the floor. Bobby and Sam each held one end of a banner that read "Congratulations Scott and Jean!" They looked at the couple expectantly until Kitty exclaimed, "So?"
Jean smiled at her fiancé. "We're engaged!"
A roar went up through the crowd and her three female friends exchanged high fives. "It was the roses, right?" Amara grinned. "I knew you loved roses."
"But the candles were my idea!" Rogue added.
The redhead blinked. "Wait…you three were in on this?"
"Of course!" Kitty grinned widely. "We've been working on it for weeks, trying out different ideas. Scott wanted everything to be perfect."
She looked over at her future husband and best friend, who was grinning sheepishly at her. "You deserved perfect." He kissed her softly.
"It was…oh, it was." She began to cry again. This time it was in relief at her own foolishness. Jean hugged each of her three friends in turn, though Rogue the longest as if an apology for thinking such horrible thoughts about her earlier. How could she have ever doubted her friends?
"Where are you going to have the wedding?" Jamie asked.
Jean opened her mouth to answer that they hadn't talked about it yet when the Professor interrupted. "Why, they're going to have it here, of course. I would be insulted if they went anywhere else."
The engaged couple looked at each other, knowing the other's thoughts immediately. "It would just be wrong for us to go anywhere else," Scott assured them.
Ray checked his watch. "Hey, guys, half-time's over!" The boys filed out, each shouting their own congratulations to the couple.
Scott wrapped his arms around his future bride, pulling her into a loving embrace. The other girls exchanged a look. "I think we'll leave you two alone," Amara giggled. Rogue winked at them as Kitty phased them out of sight and the rest of their audience took their leave as well.
The redhead snuggled against his chest, eyes sparkling with delight. "Jean Grey-Summers. I really like the sound of that."
"I was hoping you would," he chuckled. "I know you've been kind of mad at all my secrecy lately and I can't blame you. It's really hard to keep a secret from a telepath. You were surprised, right?" She nodded and considered mentioning that as the understatement of the year. He sighed in relief, kissing the top of her head affectionately. "Good. I'm sorry it took me so long. I don't blame you for being annoyed at me."
Jean glanced at the beautiful ring on her finger, then leaned up to kiss him softly and lovingly. "Are you kidding? I never doubted you for a second!"
A/N: I love writing from Jean's point of view. She's such an interesting character and the fact that I get to add some JOTT fluff to it makes me even happier. I'm sorry for ignoring my other fics to finish this one shot, but I have extreme medical reasons why it's going to take a longer time to update. By the way, this was not edited but if you find that there's glaring errors I will take it down and replace it with a fresh, betaed copy as soon as my beta stops being lazy.
On the bright side, I will send whoever submits a signed review a review response with fun new system. I'm going to love that thing.
Questions, comments, reactions and reviews are greatly appreciated.