Man, these fics are just falling out of me like the decorations on our Christmas tree when my cat tried to climb it. I think I've found my calling. Scott cops a bit of a beating in this one, quite the opposite to my last Xmen fic. I really should be studying, but fan fics are just so much more fun. I hope you enjoy, and please review it if you do.
"This is what it's about," Scott announced grandly, grinning all over his face, "The fresh sea air, the bonding, the light-hearted jokes swapped between friends, the glistening of scales, the pride of the first person to land a catch, a little healthy, but ultimately unimportant, competition…"
He was standing at the front of the small tin boat, his fishing rod in one hand like a royal staff, his tackle box by his side. Behind him, Logan, John, Kitty, Marie and Bobby were slumped on the floor, staring blankly into the ocean.
"The slaughtering of innocent creatures," Kitty added, looking resentfully at Scott, who had arranged the trip as a learning experience, to 'guide the four of them onto the right track,' after they'd arranged a game of 'midnight icy-floor-mega-death-fire-tag'. Logan had been eager to join them when Rogue told him about it. Scott had assumed he was just a fishing-enthusiast, until he'd arrived with half a liquor store.
"The getting drunk with your friends," Logan joined Kitty dolefully, looking with just as much resentment at Scott, who had forbidden alcohol on the trip when he realised Logan's intentions, and locked all of Logan's in his car. Then, when Logan had paid Kitty $50 to get it out for him, Scott had punctured it and emptied it onto the grass.
"The being cramped in a tiny boat with five other people you'll kill if you touch," Rogue put in without removing her gaze from the water, but, anyone could tell, she would be glaring at Scott if she did.
"The glare and the heat from the sun with no protection," Iceman complained. Scott had told them all to bring hats, but they, stubborn in their resentment of Cyclops and his punishment, had ignored him. Now they were paying for it. They were only a few metres from the beach, and already sweating and salty. Pyro, the others all noticed, had wasted no time in taking his shirt off to show everyone his working-out-for-hours-a-day physique, under the pretence of using his shirt as a makeshift hat.
Scott, still grinning joyfully at finally having gathered some people to go fishing with him, started the engine, and gunned it out into the water.
Kitty trailed a hand in the cold depths. "Is there no way of escaping?" she asked in a low voice to the four people huddled around her, sharing her misery.
"Well… death," Pyro suggested.
"Come on Iceman. Freeze the water or something?" Rogue pleaded.
"Eh, he'd just come after us. Or make us do it next weekend," Logan brushed off her suggestion.
"There's no other way?" Shadowcat looked at them pleadingly.
"Well… there's always his death. You know, an accident at sea or something?" Pyro didn't seem to see anything wrong with his idea.
"I like the way you think, kid," Logan smiled, "Hey Rogue, you wanna? You don't have to kill him proper, just take him out for a few hours."
Marie looked uncertain. "I really don't want his powers."
"Hey, come on, please?" Pyro practically begged, "Take one for the team."
"What are you guys talking about over there?" Scott boomed, "Here's a topic: which type of bait is best?"
"Stupid, far-too-enthusiastic mutant teachers," Pyro muttered. The others chuckled naughtily.
"Personally, I think worms are outdated," Scott continued.
"Yeah, I bet when you're going to make a day of killing, you really make a day of it. Let me guess, dolphin meat for bait? Live kittens? Tiny, big-shiny-eyed seal cubs?" Kitty broke in.
Scott's grin faltered for a second, and he turned his full attention back to the water.
"Bastard," Kitty mumbled as she returned to trailing a hand in the water. Logan grinned. He was really starting to enjoy this day. Alcohol or not, there was a certain mateship forming, as Scott had said. It just happened to be forming around planning his downfall.
"So, Rogue, what do you say?" Pyro returned to their original topic. The others all looked at her hopefully. She rolled her eyes.
"Fine. I'll kill him a little bit. How do I make it not seem suspicious?"
"We'll push him overboard, and as we're helping him back in, you grab an arm or a leg and squeeze," Bobby piped up so quickly it was clear he'd been thinking about it. Land was disappearing behind them quickly, as they headed out into deeper and deeper water. God knew what it was Scott wanted them to fish for.
Bobby rested a hand on the deck, which was already wet with water leaking in through numerous holes Scott had patched badly with bandaids, and covered it in a thin film of slippery ice.
"Who's going to push him?" he asked in a whisper. They all looked at each other. Kitty finally rolled her eyes.
"I'll do it." She was just that desperate to not have to fish. She stood up and took a casual step towards Scott as he turned.
"That'll do it," he called, and cut the motor. The sudden stop sent Kitty, the only person on her feet, slipping on the ice, straight overboard and into the water. Pyro burst out laughing at the irony, as the others ran to her aid.
Scott and Logan each grabbed an arm and hauled her up, where she sat, dripping, with her hair and clothes plastered to her – like a soaking cat, as Pyro would describe it later.
"Well, looks like we'll have to go home," Iceman declared with a little too much enthusiasm.
"Ah, of course not. She'll dry in no time in this heat, and she's a survivor, our Kitty, right?"
"I'm not," Kitty shook her head desperately, "I'm really not!"
"Atta girl," Scott grinned, clearly not even listening to her. "Now let's get ready to do some fishing."
They all turned away, except Pyro, who, after some signalling to Iceman and Kitty, sat beside Shadowcat sympathetically. "Too bad," he said loudly, "That your shirt wasn't white."
"You perv! Get away from me!" Kitty shrieked, hitting him as hard she could in the chest, and trying to shove him overboard. They both glanced at Scott as they wrestled, but he didn't even turn his attention from his tackle.
"Come on, guys. Today is to build mateship."
"But did you hear what he said?"
"Just ignore him, Kitty." It really wasn't working.
"He tried to grab my-"
"Guys." They all exchanged a glance behind Scott's back.
"AAAAHH!" Pyro suddenly bellowed, shrugging helplessly at Kitty, "I think I just… um…"
"Snake!" Rogue shouted helpfully, pointing at the water, at the same time Logan cried, "Shark!"
Scott turned around, looking confused. "What's going on?"
"It tried to, um…" Kitty stumbled.
"Steal my wallet!" Pyro announced.
"It what?" Scott frowned.
"Yeah! The shark, it grabbed his pants and um…"
"I threw fire at it."
While Scott was frowning at them, Iceman was hurriedly kicking the fishing rods and tackle boxes into the water.
"Will you stop playing around? You don't harm sea creatures. That's just-"
"Isn't that the point of fishing?" Kitty spoke up.
"Well, yes, but you don't throw fire at them, and- didn't I take your lighter before we came?"
"Empty your pockets."
Pyro grudgingly dropped a handful of change and his Zippo lighter onto the deck. Glaring at him, Scott picked it up and pocketed it. Then he turned around.
"AHHH!" Iceman's shout was totally unconvincing as he jumped up and down, making the boat rock and fill with water. "The tackle! It fell out!"
"All of it?"
"Yes! Gosh! Hurry, or it… nooooo, it is the sinking!" Logan made a mental note to encourage Bobby to never get into 'the acting.'
"Oh god! Oh no!" Scott jumped in. "Hurry, quick! Help me!" He was thrashing around trying to grab everything.
Kitty glanced at Pyro, who gave a kind of half-shrug.
"Oh no!" they shouted together, leaping onto Scott and knocking all the articles he had from his arms. They made a show of trying to get the gear, while really kicking it under. Each piece Scott deposited on the deck, Rogue and Logan threw back in. The five of them were having really quite a good time.
Finally, when all his strength was gone and there were no more pieces of equipment to be seen, Scott gave up, and crawled back into the boat. Logan and Rogue went to help him, but he shied from Rogue's touch. Finally, he flopped back onto the deck, panting. He clutched a handful of rods and reels, and a single box of bait and flies. Kitty and Pyro climbed in after him.
"Well," he gasped when he had his breath back, "Shouldn't let that stop us, should we? We've almost got enough lines; we'll just have to share. Build mateship, right? "They all rolled their eyes. Scott didn't notice. "So, who's first? Kitty?"
Kitty politely requested that he fornicate elsewhere.
"Um, ok," his grin had faded somewhat, "John?"
"Yeah, my, um, ethical objections are similar to whatsherface's."
"You know her name, Pyro."
"Yep." Pyro leaned back, looking up into the clear blue sky.
"How about you, Rogue? Care to cast a line?"
"I'd like to see how it's done, first. You go, Professor Summers," Rogue instructed.
"Ok." Scott seemed thrilled at the idea. "Well, first of all we get our bait… fly," he corrected himself, looking at Kitty, who stared back at him in her trademark manner, "And then we-"
Behind his back, Pyro was frantically pointing at his back, staring straight at Rogue. She shook her head hesitantly, and he nodded adamantly. Kitty mouthed, 'come on,' her hands held out pleadingly. Logan was nodding encouragingly.
"-or they'll get you!" Scott chuckled, turning around, obviously having made some kind of joke. They all looked at him and forced a weak laugh, except Pyro, who continued to stare at Rogue, raising his eyebrows significantly. She rolled her eyes, and, when he turned around, stood up.
"So Professor Summers, did you say that- WHOA!" She 'fell' over, and came crashing down on Scott, her hands, 'flung out for safety,' grabbing at every part of naked skin they could find. He tried to fight her, but Pyro, leaping up shouting, "Are you ok, Rogue? Professor Summers?" held Scott firmly in place until he went limp, unconscious.
"WHOOOOO!" they all screamed simultaneously, jumping around in celebration. Lasers shot uncontrollably from Rogue's eyes, adding to the party-like feel of the boat.
"MUTINY!" Logan shrieked, reaching for the engine, "Let's get home, and maybe hit a liquor shop on the way back to the academy!"
"Let's do it!" Pyro, retrieving his lighter from Scott's pocket, shouted.
"Logan, it's not even midday yet," Kitty chuckled giddily, dancing impulsively on the deck with Bobby and Rogue.
"Who cares," Pyro, who was now lying in the thin pool of freezing water (once ice) on the bottom of the boat, looked up at them, "Come on, Logan, what's taking so long?"
They all turned to him. Logan seemed to have lost his celebratory mood.
"I don't know how to work this centuries old piece of crap of an engine. Doesn't look like we're going anywhere till Scooter wakes up," Wolverine growled. "Rogue? Head-Scott helping out?"
"Head-Scott says we can suffer, and that we didn't fool him a bit," she reported dolefully.
The boat stopped rocking as the kids, their spirit faltering, slowly settled down to sit and wait, and wait, for Scott to get up.