Okay, you have to forgive me. It's Christmas and its spirit is in the air; I've just got bitten by its 'let's rejoice' and 'peace on earth'. So maybe you may find this story too sweet, but beside it being my Christmas gift to all of you, it's also from me to me. I've just needed to see a story like this in this site. This my first chapter (duh!) and I'm going to finish it in the next one.

As always, a big thank to my great beta girl, Evening Falls.

Merry Christmas! Yes, let's rejoice and have peace on earth for this night because that is the true meaning of this holiday.

I hope you enjoy it.


Rogue was leaning her forehead against the cool crystal of her window. Everybody was sound asleep in the mansion. Tomorrow was the great day the children have been awaiting with no concealed eagerness. She wished to have their innocence, being able to live in a world of ignorance. Barely holding back her tears, she reminisced what just transpired between her friends. They've been sitting in front of the huge Christmas tree, drinking eggnog and giving each other their presents. Rogue had hoped, she had wished but she had only been completely blind. It was the perfect night, the most beautiful night. A night when hearts rejoice and peace fill the earth. Yes, she's been a fool.

Oh, Rogue couldn't really complain! He'd been the dutiful boyfriend and gave her a nice gift. But she sensed… she sighed. There was a cool aloofness surrounding him as he gave her the gift. He smiled his perfect smile, saying the perfect words. Then, why did she feel this emptiness? Because she was living a deceit. She might want to believe, it might have sounded logical. Bobby loved her and she loved Bobby. She would have preferred, greatly preferred not to see the reality and keep on living in total obliviousness. The painful emotions arrived, with her acceptance that the one she loved, truly loved was gone of her life forever. She left her place near the window and with a forlorn grimace and most certainly feeling gloomy, she sat on her bed. Sleep was avoiding her.

Some very loud rattling came from her window.

"Rogue, are you awake?"

Oh, God! It couldn't be but that deep voice. Was her mind playing tricks on her?


What in the hell was he doing at this hour of the night outside her window? It must be past midnight. Almost stomping her feet, she went to the window and opened it. And there he was, he who tormented her dreams since he abandoned her. He was wearing this big smirk as he looked down at her. That, more than anything else, gave her the strongest urge to slap him, soundly. Of course she wouldn't do any of the sort. Slapping was very unladylike and…

Her palm connected with his cheek sharply, loudly, and it was wonderfully satisfying to see the imprint of her hand in his face. And definitely worth the hot stinging she now felt in her hand. But she was surprised that she'd done it. John, of course, was even more surprised and mostly enraged.

"Why in the hell did you do that for?" He shouted his expression was thunderous. In fact, his temper was on the border of exploding. He felt undeserving of her attack.

"How could you?" She shouted back. It would be a miracle if they haven't aroused anyone from their sleep with all their shouting. "You left us to follow him. And you have the gall to show up at my room in the middle of the night as if nothing happened."

She was about to cry, if from joy or bitter anger, she couldn't tell. She didn't want to cry. But she had so much emotions welling up inside her. At least half of it was anger and she concentrated on that to hold her tears. As she opened and closed her hands at her side, trying to quell the desire of hitting him again, she looked at him and caught on the changes on him. His hair was blonde and those eyes, they almost make her shiver; cold and soulless.

"I did what every mutant should do…"

"Oh, spare me the lecture, John! Do you truly believe your own words? If you are here to convince me that you chose the correct road, you're wasting your time."

"I didn't come by for that…" He grumbled as he touched gingerly the reddened cheek. It still stung.

"What exactly did you come here for?" Rogue crossed her arms over her chest. The brown eyes stared at him challengingly.

Suddenly his whole demeanor changed completely. Before her eyes there was no longer Pyro, the furious young mutant capable of doing anything. He growled and raked his fingers through his hair in exasperation. Rogue almost softened before his display of discomfort; almost. How could you feel all those strangled feeling for someone? He infuriated her but she also wanted to take him in her arms and cuddle him.

"Magneto gave us the night and tomorrow off to see our family since it's the holidays." He shrugged nonchalantly.

Rogue heart did a somersault upon hearing his words. She hadn't expected that answer. He considered her his family. But her pride didn't allow her to give in just yet. He left without thinking of the consequences of his departure. She stared at him in silence.

"So, how is the ice prick?" He asked as if nothing has transpired between them.

She let out a resigned sigh.

"Would you come in?" She stepped aside. She knew he hated the cold; he simply despised it. He nodded, that being his way to give her thanks and entered her room. Rogue closed the window.

"I can't stay for too long."

"You shouldn't be here at all."

"I know."

What was wrong with him? No smart reply; no cocky answer.

"I just came to give you this." He took a small wrapped up package from inside his windbreaker.

Rogue took the small gift in her hand, not sure if she should accept it… But it was Christmas Eve; there must be this unspoken law, like some kind of peace treaty when supposed enemies leave behind their hostility.

"Merry Christmas, Rogue." He turned as if to leave.

"John." She called him.

He stopped.

"You… you can stay the night here." She was sure he didn't have any place to go.

"No. I better leave."

Rogue couldn't hold it back anymore; she ran to him and hugged him. John left his arm at his side. "Promise me you will take care of yourself."

She never saw John's expression. How he closed his eyes, this grimace of pure anguish marring his brow.

"Yeah. I will."

Rogue saw him leaving through her window. She walked to her bed, now feeling very depressed. Why did she have to love him so much? Suddenly she remembered the gift and opened the delicate wrapping paper. Her heart stopped completely at seeing the velvety box. No. It couldn't be. She choked a sob; there, inside the box was the most beautiful ring with a solitaire diamond. Gulping down the hurtful sobs, she ran to the window. He was nowhere to be seen.

"John!" She called him. No answer.

She let herself fall down to the floor, hugging her midriff, as she rocked herself and the tears flowed down her cheeks.

"I love you too, John." She hiccupped.

Taking the ring she slid it on her finger fitting perfectly. It wasn't the ring what made her feel like receiving the perfect gift on Christmas Eve. No, it was John meant with it. A rare determination possessed her. She stood from the floor and getting out of her room she walked to Bobby's door. She knocked not so gently. A sleepy Bobby opened the door.

"I'm sorry; Bobby, but I can't be your girlfriend anymore." She raised her hand so he could see the ring. "I'm engaged to someone else."

With a foolish smile spreading all over her face, she left behind a dumbfounded Bobby. None one has given her the perfect night, except for her Johnny. When her head rested on her pillow, she closed her eyes hoping and wishing… no; she was sure that she would see John again.