Summary: Bobby and Rogue are engaged, so why the angst? Complete and utter AU.

Disclaimer: Property of Marvel and Fox and Stan Lee and blah blah blah...

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Chapter 1

He's been gone for six months, she thinks to herself, making another "x" on the calendar she's hidden in her desk.

"Rogue?"

She hurriedly stuffs the calendar back into the drawer as she hears Bobby on the other side of the door.

"Rogue? Are you in there?"

"Just a second!"

She knows that Bobby won't enter without permission – he's just that type of guy. She goes into the bathroom to splash cold water on her face. It doesn't help; her eyes are still red and swollen.

"Rogue?"

"I'm coming!"

She opens the door and Bobby looks at her funny.

"Were you sleeping?"

"Um….yeah….I was just taking a quick nap…." It was a lame answer but better that than telling him the truth.

He gives her another look – one she can't interpret – but he doesn't push it further. "I just came by to give you these."

He hands her some maps and a guidebook.

"Thanks," she says quietly.

"Have a good trip, okay?"

"Yeah…."

He's silent for a moment. "Jubilee and Kitty are excited to be going."

"I'm still not sure how Logan's feeling about going with the three of us though."

He gives her a lopsided grin and says, "Well, maybe he'll wear his seatbelt if all three of you pester him."

She just gives him a small smile.

He shifts uncomfortably from one foot to the other; he wants to say something more. Then he blurts out, "It's going to be fine."

"What?"

"It's going to be fine," he says again. "Storm and Jean don't mind taking over the preparations and I've already spoken with a priest and Jubilee gave me some names for the band and…."

"Bobby….I know. I know," she says, interrupting his ramble. She takes his hand and gives him a reassuring squeeze. At least she hopes it's reassuring. "I know it'll be perfect. I just….I just need to spend some time with my friends before we…."

She can't finish that sentence and can't look at Bobby anymore.

He waits for her to finish but knows that she won't, for reasons he didn't want to think about. So he just says, "Have fun in Alaska."

--

"I don't know how you convinced me to come on this vacation from hell. And if that little mall rat says one more thing about government seatbelt regulations, I swear to God, I'm leaving her at the next rest stop."

Rogue giggles while Logan angrily chomps on his unlit cigar. They're standing outside of a giftshop filled with tacky Niagara Falls memorabilia. The owner apparently more concerned about Logan's manhandling of the products than actually making a sale.

"She's only concerned about your well-being, you know."

"Oh, God, not you too…."

She laughs and he just gives her a disgruntled look. But it's not long before he's laughing too.

"It's been a while since you've done that."

"Done what?"

"Laugh. You haven't really done that since….."

"Don't say it, Logan."

He sighs loudly, putting the unlit cigar back in his pocket. He watches from the corner of his eye as Rogue's smile disappears and her lips begin to tighten.

"It's been…..what?"

"Six months," she says quietly, fiddling with the tips of her gloves.

"It's not healthy, you know. Not talking about it."

"Look who's talking. Mr Conversationalist here."

"Marie…."

Now it's her turn to sigh loudly. She hates it when he used that tone.

"Really, Logan, there's nothing to talk about."

"Nothing to talk about, eh? That why you've been pestering the Professor to find him? That why I've been hearing you cry in your room at night?"

She refuses to say anything or even to look at him.

"Look, Marie…."

"Hey, guys, look! Have you seen anything more hilarious?"

Jubilee comes up to them, holding a snowglobe in her hand. She stops short when she sees the serious looks on their faces.

"Something wrong?"

"No, nothing's wrong," Rogue says quickly, plastering a fake smile on her face. "Is Kitty coming?"

"Um, yeah, she's just paying for some postcards…."

"Oh, I want to get some postcards too." Rogue leaves in a rush before Logan can stop her.

"Is she okay?"

Logan sighs again. "I don't know. Listen, has she been talking to you?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean, since the engagement….she's been acting…."

"Weird?"

"Well, yeah…. Has she said anything to you?"

"Not really. I mean, I haven't really pushed her about it but there's something definitely wrong." She pauses for a moment before continuing, "She doesn't act like a woman about to get married."

"What?"

"I mean, I don't know how you're suppose to act considering no one's asked me to marry them – yet – but she doesn't seem like the normal blushing bride, you know?"

Logan just shakes his head, still not following.

"She let Bobby choose the floral arrangements. She let Storm pick out a table setting. Hell, Kitty and I had to drag her to her dress fittings. Sometimes I think she doesn't really want to get married."

Logan doesn't say anything.

"Kitty thinks it has something to do with John."

Logan gives her a sharp look. "Is that what you think too?"

"I don't know…. But ever since he left….she's been….different."

"Yeah…."

--

They stop for the night at the first decent looking motel. Logan refuses to share a room with the three girls, saying something about not wanting to be emotionally scarred by Jubilee's 'beauty ritual.'

Rogue lies on the couch, drawing the short straw this time, while Jubilee and Kitty share the queen-size bed. She hears Jubilee snoring softly and Kitty muttering something about flying monkeys in her sleep.

Rogue closes her eyes and tries to sleep but ends up just thinking about him and the days leading up to his departure from the school….and her life.