Thanks to my great beta Evening Falls.

Happy New Year to all.

---oxxxo---

If someone told him that angels didn't exist he would blatantly call liar the person to his or her face. Right now, in all its most glorious beauty, was an angel dancing under the sun, its light making those two striking white stripes to shine like pure silver. Gliding on the iced pond, he swore to have never seen anything so beautiful as her. Her long coat, which was a color so unusual for her, a very lively blue, hugged every curve of that delightful and oh so feminine body. He suspected it was a Christmas gift, maybe from the weather goddess. It was trimmed with the softest white fur, caressing those deliciously wind-reddened cheeks. Her coiffure has come somewhat undone, some tendrils of her satiny chocolate hair trailing and surrounding her angel face.

He wasn't supposed to be there. He knew better; he should be somewhere else doing what Magneto asked of him. But no, here he was, staring at her like a stupid dumbstruck by love. He needed to see her just one more time before heading off to do his leader's order. It wasn't the first time he'd done it since leaving the Institute. Every time he had the opportunity he would come just to watch and memorize every line of that face, that shapely body of hers and her brilliant smile. In New Year's Day it was customary for the Institute staff to bring the kids to the park near the Mansion, where all of them will skate on the iced pond and today was no different. Just a few more minutes and he would leave unnoticed.

Since he left, he'd been devoting too many thoughts to her. He'd never done it before; not even before he left, when he had her near. In the beginning it started to irritate the hell out of him. Overly disgusted with it, he found that it was a lost battle. That's how he ended buying her that ring. A soft deprecating laugh left his mouth. Like if she would give him, he who was the dirt that was shaken off from shoes, the time of her life. Clenching his fist inside his windbreaker pockets, he saw the ice prick go near her again, to be dismissed disdainfully for the third time by her. Something was definitely amiss in Rogue and Bobby's wonderland. And damned if he wouldn't find out what the hell was going on.

Rogue skated as far away as possible from Bobby. She felt uncomfortable near his presence, she didn't want to have anything with him and apparently he didn't understand or was so dense that he didn't get it. Plain stubbornness and pride wouldn't allow him to accept it. Her lips twisted sourly, their love has died a long time ago. Her brow was furrowed, her mind was having dark thoughts and all of a sudden she felt this overly cold hand snaking around her waist, stopping her. "Would you have pity on a poor soul?"

Closing her eyes, she delighted herself for a few seconds on that deep voice and in the pleasurable shudder that went down her spine. She opened them and glanced around her rapidly, she was relieved to see that nobody has noticed them together. The smart aleck decided to join her when she was in the middle of a throng of skaters.

"How's that?"

"What? No more slapping?"

"It depends." She answered playfully while her cheeks got a bit redder remembering what happened on their last encounter.

"On what?"

"Well, why would I have pity on your soul?"

"I'm in need of a little warming."

It was impossible for her cheeks to turn redder but they did nonetheless. With John you could never tell when he was being plain serious or just sinfully wicked. He slipped his hand under her coat and she let out a muffled gasp. She shivered as that cold hand spread over her side.

"Bad as all that, is it?" She heard him chuckle softly. Funny, she never heard him laughing; sneering, yes but never a heartfelt laugh. She had to admit it was a delicious sound.

"This isn't going to warm you adequately. You need a fire and…"

"You'd be surprised," he whispered by her ear, "how quickly you can warm me."

She shivered again. They both knew it wasn't because of the cold this time. But then his icy nose touched her cheek and she jumped, startled. "John." Her voice admonished him.

"I do really need warming, babe."

"Then let's get you something warm to drink."

"No." He turned her around. Rogue found herself loosing in those beguiling stormy eyes. "I don't…" He stopped, his lips becoming pale thin lines.

She understood immediately, he didn't want to leave her side. He needed to feel her closeness. He slipped his other hand under her coat and spreading them on her back, he pressed her against his body. She let her gloved hands rest on his shoulders. Oh, God! He was so ruggedly handsome. She couldn't stop staring at him mesmerized by those beautiful eyes.

"You should have dressed warmer." Her voice was a low whisper, finding difficult to speak feeling all that hard body against hers.

He lowered his head, his nose almost touching her. "And let pass the opportunity to have you like this?"

The brown eyes took on a darker hue. His grin was sinful making her heart to pound faster in her chest. "You looked lovely out there, baby."

His compliment warmed her insides even more. Oh, my! Were they crazy? Look at them, just talking, forgetting who they are, who he is. But, did it really matter? Suddenly, remembering where she was, she took another rapid glance around her. The other skaters still concealed them. She was scared for him. "John…"

"No. I won't, not at least for a little while more."

She leaned her head on his chest. She couldn't, she wouldn't deny herself this stolen minutes with him. Why didn't anyone warn her how painful could love be? John raised one of his hands to cover one of hers. He froze his body stiffening. With a strange sense of dread intermingled with joyful expectancy, she realized that he felt it.

"Marie?" She felt fluttering in the pit of her stomach after hearing that raspy voice, almost pleading and somewhat gruff.

She held her breath, "Yes, Johnny." She was embraced with fierceness. In complete silence they savored each other presences. Why couldn't they dare to dream, to wish? Perhaps the circumstances weren't on their side; maybe it could drive them apart, but, was it wrong to allow this feeling to grow between them? They were both walking on this world blind, not knowing where this uncertain path as a mutant would lead them to. Two desperate souls trying to find their places in this thing called life. Wasn't it better to learn to love instead of hating? Nothing was definite in this world; everything was temporary not being able to know when your last day was on earth. Love was, maybe, an old fashioned word. But, then, wasn't love what dared you to leave behind your beliefs and let you care for that person? Haven't it in the past being able to unite lovers, helped them to find their ways into each others arms?

Rogue wouldn't let go.

John wouldn't let go.

They both decided that it was better to love.

In a gruff voice, he called her as if his life depended on that single word. "Marie."

She pulled back and his face began to lower. She was too stunned to move; all of this wonderfully sensations paralyzing her. Closing her eyes, she felt those sensuous lips on her, that hot mouth fiercely taking, tenderly giving. Pleasure came swiftly; she was helpless, not being able to stop even though she felt the pull of her mutation. She kissed him back and reveled in the sound of his groan.

John didn't want to stop. He felt the weakness in his limbs, but still couldn't find it him to stop. She tasted so sweet, like honey. His need for her grew like fire inside him. It was so consuming that he barely felt himself to slacken against her. It was Rogue who stopped, very alarmed.

"John." She let out in a gasp. "Are you okay?"

He tried to gulp down air, holding on to consciousness. Rogue held him tightly. All her head was invaded by him and for the first time, she didn't mind to have another psyche inside her. It was John's, filling her with his warmth, all of his sinfully amazing and divine sensation taking over her own, creating this overwhelming and delightful mixture.

He smirked down at her, his face sickly pale. "I told you; I only needed you to warm me."

To her utter surprise, he was warm. She saw him nearing his face to hers.

"Don't you dare!" She hissed. "Are you mad?" She was afraid to hurt him.

"Oh, yeah, baby, crazy with those lips of yours."

"And we're not alone here."

"Who cares?"

"I do."

He began to skate backwards, this wolfish grin spreading over his lips. "You look beautiful when you get all huffy."

She shook her head slowly, her eyes giving him a stern glare but it was so difficult. This new side of John baffled her and lured her to follow him into that playful banter of his. Abruptly, all his face changed, a frown marring it.

"I have to go. There are some things that I need to take care."

Her brown eyes glistened; reality has to intrude its ugly head into their world. It was hard to see him go but she was painfully aware of their strangled situation.

"That's okay." She didn't know whom she was trying to convince, him or her. She smiled and her lips trembled.

"I would like…" He swallowed, trying to find the right words, "to keep in touch."

"I would like that too."

Rogue was amazed at seeing that handsome face brightening up with a sweet, small smile. Men, Rogue knew, were supposed to be handsome not beautiful; but she believed there was no other word to describe that manly face; it was breathtakingly beautiful. Leaning down, he kissed her briefly.

"Expect my call next Sunday, at two in the morning." He knew at that hour everybody was soundly asleep in the mansion.

She nodded, gulping down the burning sensation in her throat.

"And Marie?"

"Yeah?"

"Think about a date."

She looked confused. "A date?"

"Yes." He winked at her. "For the wedding."

Kissing her again, he let her go and skated away. Rogue took her hand to her lips, relishing on the tingling sensation, watching him gliding gracefully over the ice. For being someone who hated cold he was good at it… Did he say wedding? His words unexpectedly sank on her, the wondrous meaning of it making her feel happy and …

"Who the hell was the blonde?"

Gee, leave it to Bobby to ruin her the moment.

She couldn't stop herself to answer him back with unconcealed anger. "None of your damn business, Bobby."

All Bobby's face scrunched up into a menacing glare. His blues eyes cold as ice trying to find him and began to skate in the direction the guy took. A forceful grip in his arm stopped him.

"Let him go."

Bobby didn't like to hear that protectiveness quality in her voice. Her brown eyes determined, showing him that she cared for the stranger.

"Is he the reason? That's why you broke up with me?" His voiced laced with icy fury.

"Yes." One small word but so full of resolve. Never before had he seen her like this. It only helped to add more fire to his anger.

"Who is he?"

"I told you, Bobby, none of your damn business." And she skated away from him.

God help her, but she would guard the secret with fierceness, even if it cost her life. She would not give up on him. She dared to give a quick glance toward Bobby; thank goodness he didn't follow her. She was in no mood to contend with his stupid pride. Now, she was in the mood for other things. With anxiousness, she thought about John's call. She only hoped the week passed her by fast; an uncontrollable urge to hear that deep voice again. She knew John was only being his mischievous self, but it wasn't bad to dream about a date. Her eyes glinted with concealed playfulness; San Valentine Day would be a good date.

---oxxxo---

A/N: I've got this weird premonition that more of the half of you who read this won't like my characterization of John. But, heck, can the guy be allowed to fall in love? Is that so difficult to visualize? For me, John and Logan share the same traits. Logan has the gut to let know Jean that he loved her. Now, why wouldn't John do the same? We all know that the boy has deep and strong feeling for Rogue. For once, couldn't there be a fic where he is capable of loving and showing that love? In the movies, I saw a hard John, a cynical John, but also he was the first to show Rogue, mind you, THE FIRST, to show her that he was interested in her. And there comes Bobby to ruin everything, charming her and distancing her from John. Now, I won't dwell in Rogue's feelings in regard to John that were blatantly shown in X2 because if I do I'll never find the end of it.

Now, feel free to let me know what you think.