Logan knew he should be preparing for the hell that could very well be falling on his shoulders shortly, but he still slept like a baby.

Bob went back to surfing, and Logan told Faith what he'd done on their way back to Vancouver. It made her chuckle and she said that next time he was bringing her along or their days of sleeping together were over. Damn, she always knew the threats that would hit him the hardest.

Logan figured he slept harder than he intended because he'd been doing a lot of healing, and that always seemed to take it out of him. He really needed to stop getting in car crashes.

When he woke, it was already after noon, and Faith had left him a note saying she had to be with Tony at this meeting, but she'd be back afterwards. Which meant he could keep sleeping in, but he felt terribly lazy, and besides, he had to see if there was any fall out yet.

There were two ways the mob could play this: the smart way, which was to get the fuck out of Dodge. The other way - the stupid, and therefore most likely, way - was to decide he was a problem that needed to be taken care of, something that needed to be killed or at least run out on a rail. How they would do this he had no idea, but he was curious to find out.

He made some breakfast (okay, lunch at this point) and turned on the midday news, to see if any of it made the media. The answer was an unsurprising no. The problem was neither he nor the mob had written a diet book or made a sex tape. If they had, well then, they were in damn it. He wasn't sure about the diet book, but the sex tape sounded like fun.

The phone rang, and since this was Faith's place, he wasn't sure he should pick up, but since it was probably Faith, he did.

"What the fuck did you do to me?"

No, it wasn't Faith.

He recognized the voice as Mystique's, and he glanced at the clock. Had it been twenty hours? He guessed so. "What'cha talkin' about? We kicked your ass, darlin'. End of story."

"No it's not," she insisted. "It doesn't make sense. There's no way you could have remembered what happened in the lab, and there's no way you and that chippie could have outsmarted me."

"Oh, why? 'Cause we're stupid?"

"Compared to me, everyone is stupid."

"As long as you're not full of yourself," he said, trying not to snicker.

"You may be able to speak a fuckload of languages, Logan, but it doesn't make you smart."

"Hey, I'm a dumbass, I know that. But I know smart people."

She was quiet for a long moment. "You brought in a telepath, didn't you?"

"The only telepaths I knew are dead." Of course Xavier wasn't really dead, but only he, Bob, and Angel knew that, and the latter two only because they were his insurance policy against mind erasing. (Xavier couldn't access a vampire's mind, and if he even got within shouting distance of Bob, his brain was pudding.)

"So you say. But nothing that happened makes any sense unless a telepath was involved."

"Then they musta fucked with my brain too, 'cause I don't remember 'em being involved." He wasn't lying - Bob wasn't a telepath. Now if she'd argued it was divine intervention, she'd have nailed it.

"This is bullshit," she replied bitterly.

"Like I haven't beaten you before."

"Not like this. I should have the Hype now. What the fuck did you do with it?"

"Got rid of it. Kinda like the mob got rid of Vogel. Maybe we should send 'em a thank you card." She made a noise not unlike a "harrumph", but otherwise reminded quiet, her hatred oozing over the line like static. He remembered that the Hype was only part of her reason for grabbing Vogel. "I'm sorry about Svetlana."

And just like that, she hung up on him. He heard a very aggressive click and a dial tone, and he grimaced partially out of guilt before hanging up himself. He kind of thought that would make her hang up on him, but he wasn't sure. He should have known better - it was a weakness she loathed. The fact that he knew was something new to hold against him.

He finished his lunch and was loading the dishes in the dishwasher when someone pounded on the door. It wasn't a knock; it was someone aggressively pounding their fist against the door. A cop? It sounded like a cop to him. But if someone wanted to arrest him - Faith? No way; Tony'd have her sprung in five minutes, and one of his high priced lawyers would move into the police department's ass until they begged him to go away - they'd have to send more than one person to do it. Or two. Maybe ten, if he was in the mood to cooperate.

When he went to the door, he was surprised to smell a familiar person lurking behind it. "What the hell are you doing here?" he asked Brent Ellison as he opened the door.

Brent scowled at him, a touch more grey in his hair than the last time he saw him. He was starting to put on weight too, but since he was always kind of scrawny, it didn't hurt that much. Maybe a police department desk job did that to you. "What the fuck do you think you're doing?" Brent retorted, far more angrily. He started to walk in, and Logan could have body blocked him, but decided to go ahead and let him in. He wasn't here to arrest him. Ellison knew better than anyone that if he wanted to bring him in, he'd need an entire team.

Logan was still shutting the door after him when he continued his rant. "Are you totally out of your fucking mind?! I mean seriously. What were you thinking? Were you thinking at all?"

"What are you talking about?"

Ellison stared at him like he had not only lost his mind, but had it laminated and put around his neck as a piece of jewelry. "You ordered the mob out of Vancouver, that's what you did. Were you drunk?"

He closed the door and leaned against it. "I did no such thing. How'd you find me?"

"I had information that you'd been seen coming into this building. I just asked around for the location of the prettiest dark haired woman here."

"Am I that predictable?"

"You don't seem to go for blondes."

"I got nothin' against 'em."

He glared at him, looking like he wanted to punch him, but Ellison knew better than to do that. "Why are you denying it? Who the hell else could Logan Yashida be?"

Logan returned his look guilelessly. "I'm not Japanese."

Brent's eyes narrowed until it looked like he was trying to make his head explode through sheer force of will alone. "Cut the shit, okay? One man who scares a whole bunch of psychopaths with guns? Gee, that's a huge field. I have no idea which one of the dozens of suspects I should choose. Give me a fucking break, Logan. Also - do I really need to point this out - when Lily first found you, you could barely string a coherent sentence together, but somehow you were totally fluent in Asian languages. For all we know, you could be part Japanese, you just don't look it."

"Maybe I'm just good with languages."

He glared at him. "Are you gonna cut the shit at any point?"

"Prob'ly not." Well, he probably owed the guy some truth after all, if just out of respect for the late Lily Whitewolf.

Ellison threw his hands up and rolled his eyes, appealing to an invisible deity who wasn't here. "Fine, be a dick. I just hope you realize what you've done. By playing "hero" - or whatever the fuck you were playing at - you have fucked everything up. We had ongoing investigations into the mob, you know. But now that they're all running like someone yelled Uli Boll in a theater full of movie critics, it's all gone to shit. Years of work and evidence. Poof! Worthless."

Logan smirked at his rather complicated metaphor - Uli Boll in a theater full of movie critics? It was good, just a bit complex - but quickly rubbed it off his face so he didn't think he was smirking at him.

So the mob were doing the smart thing? Wow. Bob must have tipped the scales. It would be hard to ignore a powerful guy in a wetsuit. "Shouldn't the evidence still be good? I mean, yeah, maybe they're running for the border, but that doesn't instantly invalidate the evidence …"

"It also creates a power vacuum," Ellison interrupted, not really giving a shit about what he was saying. "Why the Yakuza or the Triad aren't running in to fill the void I have no idea - except, surprise, they seem afraid of this guy too - but I do know that what will eventually fill the space will be something bigger and nastier, something that will kick your ass. Then what the fuck will you do, Logan, huh?"

"I guess that'll be my problem."

"Yeah, I guess so. Except we'll all be paying for it. So on behalf of all the terminally fucked residents of Vancouver, thanks so fucking much." He turned and stomped towards the door, deliberately brushing his shoulder as he passed. Logan let it go, because Ellison had certainly worked himself into a snit. He also had a couple of good points … except, of course, he didn't know that he knew a lot of people. Demons, for example, vampires, even gods. Could the mob find a way to beat him? Sure, probably. But all of them? No, no way. See, that was the good thing about being a misfit and making friends with other misfits: sometimes their odd little talents came in handy. And he'd scratched enough backs over the years - mostly figuratively, but some literally - that he felt he had some favors owed to him. If he needed to call them in to deal with a bunch of idiot mobsters, he would.

"If it makes you feel any better at all, I have a plan," he told him.

Ellison just gave him a new variation of the dirty looks he'd been giving him since he stormed in. "I hope so. 'Cause you have no idea what you're in for now." Ellison slammed the door as he left, so Logan didn't have a chance to tell him that yeah, actually he did have some idea.

Maybe Mystique thought he was dumb, but he'd always had a nose for trouble. And he thought he had enough experience by now to know how to deal with it.

Well, most of it. Never all. But hell, what would life be without a few surprises?


Since at the time of posting we're at a year's end, I just thought I'd thank my many readers over the years - you are all appreciated - and wish everyone a Happy New Year.