Dangerous Exercise by paxnirvana
Rating: R
Fandom: X-Men Comics
Pairing: Gambit/Rogue
Archive: Ask and ye shall receive. But ask.

Author's Note: The Danger Room has so many possibilities for mischief, don't you think? Just add Gambit and stir. 4/29/01

11/30/01 Revision notes: A good editor would have kicked my ass for this story - sloppy work. The author's intent is one thing, actually executing it properly is another. It's been a long time since I've re-read this and I'd write it in a different style now, but it's still fundamentally the same idea. Appreciate the prior positive feedback on this, 'tho it's certainly generated a lot of outrage too. I still don't quite see the full-on 'abuser' aspects of this story so many have blasted me with, but then I view comics!Rogue as one of the worst abuser characters ever created. Tragic and pathetic, but still an abuser. *shrugs* Heck, it's my story and if you don't like it, flame away. Or better yet, email me and we can 'discuss' it.

Oh, and I'm not into the 'motion sense' power for Gambit any longer - I prefer empathy. Far more angst that way. *grin*

Disclaimer: They still belong to Marvel. I'm still not makin' a cent.

* * * * *

Bo staff spinning gracefully in his hands, Gambit eyed Cyclops with weary patience as their leader outlined the exercise he wanted them to follow this morning in the Danger Room.

"Rogue, Storm, I want you two to hunt and tag Gambit and Bishop. You have one hour. Guys, just don't get caught. Sound simple enough?" Gambit shrugged with casual grace, his manner anything but serious; Bishop nodded gravely. Rogue grinned back at Cyclops, reflecting Gambit's mood, her arms crossed arrogantly over her chest. Storm raised a brow at her.

"Need anythin' else, sugah, like proof?" Rogue asked with a tight grin. Cyclops frowned at her.

"Proof, chère?" Gambit drawled before Cyclops could speak. "Won' get close enough for dat."

"We'll see, swamp rat," she said, her green eyes twinkling mischievously. "That coat is mine." She seemed to be in a good mood this morning, unlike him. He was tired from another night spent brooding on the roof, but he smiled wickedly back at her, rising to the challenge.

"Any time you wanna take Remy's clothes, chère, you let him know," he leered at her, then softened it with a wink. "But it won' be in da Danger Room." She stiffened slightly, but returned his look with a twisted smile, her eyes narrowing dangerously.

Cyclops rolled his eyes behind his visor, clapping his hands together once for attention.

"Enough banter, people," he said. "Get to it." Then he turned and made his way up to the control booth. The two teams separated, Gambit still watching Rogue as he collapsed his bo staff and slipped it into his coat. She waggled her brows at him, promising retribution. He kissed his fingertips, blowing mockingly toward her as the lights in the Danger Room lowered and the simulation shimmered into existence around them.

A common terrain, the blasted city-scape promised hiding places as well as traps. It looked as if there had already been a battle between super-powered beings waged on the shattered streets. Several cars burned on the sidewalk, there was rubble from partially collapsed walls, and sirens wailed in the distance. Possibly there would be bystanders, survivors or emergency personnel to avoid as well. The women had disappeared behind a wall, separated initially by a street. Close but not too close. Gambit traded looks with Bishop, nodding the opposite way down the street. Bishop frowned, then took off at a loping run, seeking his own hiding places.

Gambit listened carefully for a moment, hearing the rising wind that heralded Storm's approach, and melted back into the broken building behind him. Rogue had stated her intent to hunt him, but he knew she'd follow whomever she spotted first. He intended it to be him. He watched from concealment as Storm passed by swiftly in the air, tempted to fire a charged card at her just for the hell of it, but his goal was to remain undiscovered. For a time. He listened carefully, reaching out with his motion-sense. Rogue was nearby, but not close enough yet. He worked his way back into the shattered hotel, climbing nimbly over rubble. A least Cyclops hadn't made this a rescue mission, so he didn't have to watch for injured civilians.

He found and climbed the stairs, all the while aware of Rogue's presence in the street outside. Didn't want her to find him before he was ready, or lose her completely. He also didn't want her and Storm working together to track Bishop. So he picked up a fragment of concrete, charged it and tossed it back down the stairwell. Taking off, he was another two flights up before it blew. A little more concrete fell than he'd anticipated - the building was fairly shaky after whatever had transpired in Cyclops' scenario. More trap than refuge. He felt her pause, then fly into the broken lobby.

Due to the cluttered state of the damaged stairwell, she couldn't fly up it, so she landed lightly and moved cautiously onto the first flight of stairs. He was crouched three levels up, drawn back from the edge so that she couldn't see him, following her approach with his mutant senses as well as by sound. He was tired from his long night and irritated with Cyclops' endless exercises. He wanted some time alone with Rogue, but knew he wouldn't get it until the session ended. And his pride wouldn't allow him to end the scenario early by turning himself in to her. Besides, that would only make her angry and defeat the whole purpose of getting time with her. She was angry with him too often, and usually for less reason. Glancing quickly around the crumbling stairwell, he decided to alter the exercise a little bit. Have the prey become the hunter. He picked up a chunk of concrete and began to charge it, the pink glow spilling over the edge of the stairs.

Rogue froze below him, aware of him now, far too late. He dropped the chunk on the level between them and it exploded. But with greater effect than he had anticipated. The stairwell cracked away from the wall, tumbling down in a roar and scream of twisting metal and shattering concrete. Rogue gave a startled cry and disappeared in the maelstrom of motion visible to his senses. He cursed harshly - he hadn't intended to bring the whole thing down on her.

Before the last of the falling debris had settled, he was dropping down over the broken edge, anxiety making him careless. He felt a harsh scrap along his ribs, broken rebar bumping along his armor until it hit the point of his hip. He ignored the brief pain in his concern for her.

"Rogue!" he called, looking frantically through the dust, his motion-sense still blind to her. The air cleared slightly and he caught a flash of green and yellow under a pile of crumbled concrete. Only knowing she was invulnerable kept him from total panic. She could be knocked out, however, but that fear was allayed as he heard her curse, then cough.

"Well, damn," she said, moving slightly. A sizeable portion of the stairwell had fallen on her. Nothing dangerous, but she was definitely pinned, one leg bent awkwardly under her, and an arm as well, so her leverage was poor. He crouched beside her, his red-on-black eyes ablaze with concern.

"You okay, chère?" he asked, staying just out of her reach. It might have been a ploy to lure him in, but after looking her over, he doubted it. She coughed and rolled her eyes at him.

"Yeah, Ah just feel dumb," she said with disgust. "And that was a dirty trick, sugah." He shrugged, examining her carefully. Her face was smudged with dust, her hair nearly all white with it, but he still thought her lovely. He scanned her body, noting that her shoulders were pinned by a huge chunk of concrete and twisted rebar. One leg was bent up under her, the other stretched out behind her. She was nearly uncovered from the shoulders down, her hips surging futilely against the trap. Strength was no use without leverage. She was truly stuck. It was almost funny.

"You really caught der, chère," he said, lifting a hand to cover the smile twitching at the corner of his mouth. She glared back at him.

"Ya could help me out of here, swamp rat," she snarled, embarrassed and frustrated. He just shook his head sadly.

"Non, 'fraid not, petite, we on opposite sides. Have t' wait an' see if Stormy catch Bish or not."

"The exercise is fo' an hour!"

"Oui," he said, the smile twitching wider. She glared impotently at him, then her gaze narrowed speculatively. "Ah could scream, bring Storm here." He nodded as if considering her words, then reached into his coat, drawing out a dark blue bandana and snapping it open with a flourish. Her eyes widened in shock. "Ya wouldn't dare." She glared fiercely at him. He just grinned, then moved toward her faster than she could react, not that she could really get away.

"Remy!" she managed to spit out before he had wound the bandana around her mouth, knotting it carefully so that he didn't tangle her hair. She glared at him over the gag, her eyes flashing promises of dire retribution. He wisely didn't laugh, but he couldn't suppress a quick, smug smile. Her eyes narrowed dangerously and she surged under the concrete trapping her. It shifted slightly, bringing down a hail of loose rubble from above. Backing away, Gambit shook his head at her.

"Easy, chère, don' wanna bring down de whole stairwell," he chided her. She subsided, but continued to glare at him. Shrugging his shoulders, he turned away from her baleful glare and settled down near her legs, away from the free arm that would no doubt administer punishment if he let her grab hold of him - not to mention 'tag' him out of the exercise. It was the left leg bent under her, so he leaned carefully against the concrete pinning her and laid his hand on her bunched up hip. She bucked once at his touch, muffled sounds of outrage coming from behind the gag. He smiled wickedly.

"You know, chère," he said, letting warmth and humor into his tone. "Dis isn't da kind of t'ing a man lets pass 'im by." He spread his hand out over her hip, savoring the flaring curve of her buttock under his palm. It felt so good to touch her even with his half-gloves and her suit between them. Simply to feel the shape of her was a joy. Muscles bunched under his hand as she jerked up again. He ran his hand up and across her lower back, feeling her body straining under her thin uniform. He turned then and looked at her. Her eyes were wide with shock and annoyance and something that might have been fear or disdain or maybe even curiosity. He always found it hard to read her correctly, as their rocky relationship showed. So he just smiled gently at her.

"Not much time fo' us, is der, petite?" he murmured, his red-on-black eyes hooded and melancholy. She subsided, her glare softening to simple exasperation. She still seemed annoyed, but it was more perfunctory and it was as if something in her had answered the unspoken plea in his tone. Her body relaxed under his stroking hand. Encouraged by that small surrender, he trailed his hand from the pinning concrete to the back of her thigh, his touch firm and sure. Her eyes had closed, her face flushed. Was she resigned or guiltily enjoying this? He couldn't tell. But he could no more keep his hands off her than he could stop breathing.

"Don' be mad, chère," he said, his voice husky as he shifted behind her, kneeling in the dust and rubble so he could put both hands on her, framing her hips. She quivered. His fingers tightened briefly, then relaxed and smoothed down then up again, over and over, learning her shape. Exquisite. She was like a fine sculpture, firm and strong, yet graceful and eminently feminine. He felt himself hardening inside his uniform, the reaction nearly painful inside his protective cup. But his own discomfort was a small price to pay for touching her freely like this. For once she could do nothing to stop him - either by action or word.

His hands traveled over her greedily. She was shivering under him now, from pleasure or ire he didn't pause to find out. He'd willingly pay the price later. Reaching around her sides, he traced the fine line of her ribs, her waist. His long, clever hands nearly spanned her waist. He drew them down to the flare of her hips, feeling the fold of her thigh on the left and the long clean line of the extended one on the right. Then he cupped her bottom, leaning forward to lay his head in the middle of her back, his long hair falling over her, his armored chest pressing into her thigh. She jumped slightly when she felt the heat of his mouth on her spine through her uniform; he kissed his way slowly down to her tailbone.

He heard a muffled squeak of surprise as he slipped his left hand around her thigh, following the sweet inside curve. She pushed up in instinctive reaction to his explorations, shifting the block pinning her slightly. He froze, swiftly gauging if the shift was enough to harm her, or tumble more debris on top of them. It didn't seem to be a danger, so he returned his attention to her body.

"Relax, chère, I'm not hurtin' you," he murmured as he stroked her trembling inner thigh. "Jus' wanna know what you feel like. Dere's more dan one way t' enjoy each ot'er. Couldn't talk you int' dis else, I s'pose. Shame dat." As he spoke he slid both hands along her inner thighs, up to the join of her body. He touched her core briefly through her suit, feeling heat. Only natural, he supposed, swallowing hard as he forced his hands away, reluctant to alarm her too much. He kissed her hip, the sweet curve of her back, the top of her tightly rounded bottom. She was trembling under him, her legs moving slightly, her hips flexing. He briefly wondered why she didn't just kick him away, but didn't pause to think on it too closely, caught up in the feel of her. He went back to stroking her in long sweeps, his breath coming harshly.

He took a quick look at her face, seeing the tightly closed eyes, the flushed cheeks, the furrowed brow. Her mouth worked at the gag, and he wanted to remove it but didn't dare. He knew she'd likely scream for Storm or Cyclops and this strange interlude would end.

He'd wanted her for so long, had been willing to wait for her, to do whatever it took to help her control her power. But she was so afraid of intimacy - with him or anyone - that he'd begun to despair. So often she slapped away any attempt to get closer, simply because of her fear. And seldom did she realize how strongly she fought. He suspected the habit was simply too ingrained for her now and she might never change without a drastic intervention.

But he had her at his mercy now. For once she couldn't run, couldn't slap him away. He took a deep shuddering breath, his hands locking on her hips once again, then he bent low over her, his cheek pressed to the middle of her back again and spoke clearly to her.

"Chère, der are so many t'ings I want to share wit' y', show y'. But y' don' wanna listen. So now, 'ere, I show y' somet'ing, and later y' rip me 'part. Later, chère, I promise." Her head jerked up at his words, her eyes opening wide. He was already moving, his hands sweeping down to her thighs, pausing to stroke, then moving inward. She was hot. Despite herself, maybe. He smiled in brief triumph, but it swiftly faded under his own desire. There was warmth and heat, even wetness, under her protective uniform. Long fingers traced the shape of her, learned the plump folds, the delicious lines of her. He stopped briefly to tug his gloves off impatiently, wanting the least layers between them.

She was moaning now, her head twisting back and forth as his hands returned to her. He stroked her, soothed her, his clever fingers finding the secret nub of her pleasure, the concealed folds under her uniform. He breathed deeply and could just catch the barest scent of her desire. It enflamed him. He opened his mouth hot against her hip, his teeth gently grazing her. She cried out behind the gag, a startled sound, then groaned deeply. He dragged his teeth lightly across her hip, kissing each nipped spot tenderly afterwards.

Her muscles clenched under him, her hips pulsing now in time with his strokes. He was crooning to her, mindless words of love and encouragement in two languages, his voice like liquid honey. Her breath was harsh, her head lifted, her free hand clutching a chunk of concrete that slowly pulverized under the pressure of her grasp. He increased his pace, feeling the heat under his hands increase, the motions of her hips grow more desperate, less coordinated. Then she froze, a deep moan coming from her chest. He felt the ripples of minute contractions under his hand and stroked her deliberately again. Her back surged up against her prison, sending rubble cascading over them both. He ignored it, intent on the feel of her convulsing under him, the choked scream of her release. He bit her hip at the same time, his mouth wide on her, his own breathing harsh.

Then she fell limply down under him, her body trembling and jerking with aftershocks. He held his hand still on her, savoring the warmth and heat of her, his head pillowed on her back, his chest pressed to her hip. He heard her draw a desperate breath through her nose, followed by a choking sound, nearly like a sob. And his heart ached with the nearly overwhelming desire to comfort her, to kiss her. He lifted himself off her, ignoring his own throbbing need, stroking her body soothingly. Deep, long, comforting strokes from back to knee, feeling her trembling muscles slowly relax through the lingering shivers of pleasure that seized her. Simple touch was all he could offer her now, staying with her, worshiping her with his hands. So he did.

It was silent in the tiny space, as her breathing slowly calmed. He didn't dare look at her face yet.

Then he sensed motion outside in the lobby of the hotel. He froze, his hands stilling on her hips. He leaned forward, lips as close to her ear as he dared.

"Dat's Stormy, chère," he whispered. "Don' want t' leave you." Her tightly clenched eyes flew open, revealing the shimmer of tears and desperation. She nodded frantically at him and his heart sank. She didn't want to be caught like this with him, that was plain to see. Her eyes were wild, her cheeks flaming.

He closed his own eyes in despair. This had probably ruined any chance they had of remaining civil. All due to his own greed to touch her. The need to share with her the possibility of something, anything between them. Shattered by his own desire. He hung his head for a moment in shame, then he shifted to a crouch, his hands lingering on her, reluctant to make that last break.

"D'accord," he whispered. "Remy's goin'. Won' embarrass y', chère." Then he whirled and leaped for the broken rebar on the wall, climbing nimbly, and in near silence, up the rough surface to disappear into darkness above.

* * * * *

Rogue lay alone in the stairwell, feeling the loss of his hands on her like a wound, and trying desperately not to cry. His hands. Wonderful, lovely hands. Even through her uniform, she had felt them. Deep, clever, knowing. And he'd brought her shattering pleasure without a thought to himself. Pleasure she'd never anticipated, never thought she could feel. Touch before had only meant the agony of unfulfillment. She'd never been any good at pleasuring herself - too self-conscious to relax and enjoy it. All it had made her think of was all she would never know, never have.

But Remy had just given her that pleasure.

She clenched her eyes shut, hearing now the careful approach of Storm.

The other woman stepped into the shattered space, her breath hissing in on a quick gasp.

"Rogue!" Storm crouched beside her, her gloved hand touching her cheek carefully. Rogue opened her eyes, meeting the other woman's concerned gaze as calmly as she could manage. Storm frowned at the bandanna in her mouth, her hands instantly seeking the knot and releasing it. She pulled it away carefully.

"Gambit?" she asked with a raised brow as the gag fell free. Rogue worked her mouth, glad to have the cloth finally out. There had been a moment when she'd been sure she was going to bite through it. She coughed weakly trying to summon moisture to her mouth. Rogue finally just nodded to her teammate, her mouth too dry to speak. Storm rolled her eyes at the bandanna and tossed it aside, then froze.

"Dear Goddess, are you injured?"

"No," Rogue managed finally around her dry throat. "Just stuck."

"Then why is there blood on the floor?"

Rogue's eyes widened in shock and she scrambled at the rubble around her, trying to look up in the direction he had vanished. "Gambit must be hurt! The stair collapsed on me an' he came back ta check me out." The normally agile man had been carelessly anxious for her safety - even knowing she was invulnerable. Was that a sign of how much he did care for her? Or was it just a chauvinist reaction? She was tired of second-guessing his motives, tired of wariness. She sighed deeply.

"He cannot be badly injured if he escaped again - but you are certain you cannot get out?" Storm said, eyeing her thoughtfully. Rogue squirmed slightly, embarrassed by the exposure of the position. There was no way, she thought desperately, that Storm could guess what had just happened, but she was still in an awkward position.

"No leverage," she grunted, straining uselessly against the weight on her shoulders. The block had fallen across another piece of concrete, so the full weight wasn't directly on her, but it had hindered her breathing some, especially when... she broke that thought off in near-panic, as if just thinking it would make Storm realize what they'd just done. Her gaze unfocused for a moment. They'd done. The words ran through her mind again. They. Together. She felt almost giddy for an instant.

"Do you want me to abort the exercise?" Storm asked, watching her seriously. Rogue shot her a startled look then rolled her eyes in disgust. "No! He caught me fair an' square. Ah deserve it fo' not payin' attention."

"I have already tagged Bishop. Perhaps this makes it a draw."

"Nah, just go get 'im." Rogue summoned a careless smile with sheer determination. Storm rose to her feet, her delicate brows drawn together in a frown. Then she looked up the broken staircase.

"I know you are still up there, my friend," Storm called, her narrowed gaze searching the darkness above. "What game are you playing?" Rogue saw her tense for a moment as if tempted to attempt the climb anyway, then the former goddess turned away toward the lobby again. She paused an instant, looking back at her trapped teammate. "If this rubble shifts, do not hesitate to end the exercise, Rogue," Storm said sternly.

"Don't worry 'bout me. Just catch that sneaky swamp rat!"

Both women flinched at the sudden ringing clatter of metal behind them. Gambit's bo staff bounced down the pile of rubble, the adamantium shining in the dim light. Storm whirled, dust swirling around them both momentarily as she lifted off the ground. But she soon settled back, unable to fly safely through the twisted mess above. Rogue was coughing helplessly behind her so the weather goddess used her powers to still the dust, precipitating it out with a brief shower of water. Rogue held her mouth open to it, sighing in relief as the rain soothed her dry mouth.

"Thanks, Storm, even if Ah am wet as well as stuck now." Storm had gathered up the bo staff and returned to her side. She glanced from the trapped Rogue up into the darkness again and shook her head once.

"A most peculiar exercise," she said almost under her breath. Then she fitted the nearly indestructible staff under the edge of the block pinning Rogue, sliding another piece of rubble under it as a fulcrum. Using her full weight, Storm managed to shift it enough so Rogue could get both her arms under her - once she did that, she lifted the block off herself with ease. The taller woman leaned on the staff as Rogue brushed herself off, her legs slightly unsteady. Not from her imprisonment, but from the aftermath of . . . other things. Things like the feel of his hands, and the knowledge that she hadn't even tried to kick him away or even close her legs to him. She fought a furious blush at her own thoughts, failing miserably to stop it. But to her relief, Storm was looking up the stairwell again.

"Well, now you have both of us to contend with again, my friend," she spoke to the darkness. They heard a short male chuckle as a single lightly-glowing card shot out of the blackness toward them.

Jack of Hearts. The knave.

Storm dived out of the way, but Rogue simply turned her face away from the tiny explosion. More light and noise than damage. A distraction alone, but over the disturbed rubble and the echoes they wouldn't be able to hear his retreat. And she was sure he was already well on his way out of the stairwell. She looked over her shoulder to be certain Storm was unharmed, then leaped up into the darkness half jumping, half flying.

"Ah'm still after that coat, swamp rat!" she called ahead of her, her tone cheerful. If it was a game he wanted, it was a game she'd give him.

* * * * *

The wound on his thigh burned slightly, blood oozing sluggishly from under the rude bandage he'd stuffed into the gap in his uniform to keep from leaving a trail. He was silently thankful that Wolverine wasn't included in this exercise.

Stormy seemed unnerved by his altruism. She probably suspected something had happened between the two of them. But she wouldn't say anything to Rogue. She'd save her scolding for him. He grinned to himself as he ran down the deserted hallway of the hotel two levels above where he'd exited the stairwell. Storm would be outside, keeping an eye on the building from the air. He wondered briefly how she'd managed to catch Bishop so quickly, but shrugged it off. Paranoid as the time-lost man was, he still preferred a stand-up fight to sneaking around. And Stormy was one of the best. C'est la vie, he thought with wry regret, but coulda used jus' a few more minutes alone wit' ma belle Rogue.

He paused in an inset doorway, listening carefully. He'd heard Rogue's voice calling up the stairwell after him, but hadn't bothered to listen to her words. The tone had surprised him enough. She was in a playful mood. After what he'd done to her, he'd expected her to at least be annoyed with him, if not outright angry. Maybe it had been a good thing that Storm had interrupted them, before they could worry it to death as they did so many issues between them. But, Dieu, she'd been sweet, his belle chèrie Rogue.

With a wicked smile he ran silently down the hallway, toward the other stairwell, and concealing darkness. Of course, if she wanted his coat that badly, she'd have to catch him first.

And maybe, just maybe, he'd let her.

- - fin - -