Disclaimer: Don't own them

Disclaimer: Don't own them!

Chapter 3: Everything changes.

"An' I'm still here, chere. As I told y', I'm de same dat chased y' day an' night an' struggled t' earn yer trust. An' I know I lost it when I left but… we've got a chance now, de one we always yearned for, don't y' remember?"

The hallway seemed even narrower at this hour of the night, so gloomy and lacking of fresh air that you could think the walls were to crush you at any moment. Remy pushed the door open and came in, taking care Rogue's legs wouldn't collide against the door frame; next, he closed the door with his knee, quietly so she wouldn't wake up, and made his way through the room, making a mental map of the place not to stumble across anything as his eyes got used to the darkness.

He thought she felt so light in his arms, and a part of him wanted to keep here just like that a little longer, like it'd keep them from loosing each other once more. But there it was the green bed, outstanding among the grey atmosphere; he placed her there gently, and as her head reached the pillow's soft texture, she stretched and twisted and mumbled something he couldn't figure out, but then stayed quiet again.

With his arms hanging at both sides of him, he just stared at her for a few moments, not knowing exactly what to do now, or even what to think about all of this. It was so contradictory to bring back to his mind the events of the previous hour, and then to see her face, her closed eyes, just as he remembered them from the many times he sneaked in her bedroom in the middle of the night only to watch her generally uneasy sleep, or that time she fell asleep on his shoulder while watching a movie in the living room. Since he saw her arriving with the groceries' bag in the afternoon, this is the closest she'd looked from the way she used to be, from the way he'd imagined her every pointless day during these two years.

But maybe it was only a façade for something that was broken inside of her.

Remy took his coat, which was still wrapped around her, dropped it on a chair and noticed her shoulders shivered slightly in cold; her bare shoulders and arms… was it possible? Only to think about the fact that she could touch now and that he'd had no idea about it, gave him some kind of vertigo. So, as he covered her up to her neck with the bedspread, he couldn't help himself from touching her left eye brow, her cheek, her chin…

That's when Rogue opened her eyes and met his, as everything became a mess of emotions and blurry memories in her mind:

"Remy…"

"Hey…" he whispered, kneeling on the floor besides the bed: "How y' feel?"

She stared blankly for a few seconds before answering:

"Stupid…" There was a glitter of tears in her eyes now: "Why are yah still here?"

The answer to this was more than obvious for him:

"'Cause I'm worried 'bout y', chere, an'..."

But she didn't let him talk no more, placing her hand on his lips:

"No, don't say anythin', shut up…" her eyes were suddenly filled with black mascara tears and one of them started to roll down her cheek: "Just… come here, please…" she moved aside, leaving space for him on the bed, by her side.

How could he question her about her behaviour or about anything, while seeing her pleading green eyes? If this is exactly what he wanted the most: just to hold her and forget about everything else. So he did as she asked, sitting besides her, resting his back against the headboard. And like this was the right and natural place to be for the both of them, like time hadn't gone by at all, like there were no resentments, no regrets and no guilt, she rested her head on his chest, closing her eyes tight so maybe this way she could make all the bad things go away.

They stayed like this for a while. Remy ran his fingers through her hair repeatedly, his stare going from one shadowed corner of the room to another one. He didn't have to be careful not to touch her ears or forehead, and this felt just so weird; because it was good, of course, but… this just wasn't the way things were supposed to happen. Things are supposed to work out for people who love each other; how come everything went to hell, then?

A slight, persistent rain started to pour outside like a murmur.

"Ah'm sorry…" her uneasy voice finally broke the silence.

"Non, chere… I'm de one who should apologize. I went a long way away from you, Rogue. Without explainin', without sayin' goodbye" he was determined to say everything he really felt: "An' den I went a long way away from myself, an' what for? To mess up what we had… y' remember, chere? Y' remember how we were?"

She raised her face and straightened a little, staring at him with her misty eyes.

She did remember of course, and only Lord knows how many times she'd tried to forget it.

But she wasn't thinking straight right now. All she could see was his face so close to hers, his eyes, as memories of love and pain stabbed her inside. His face, his lips… so she kissed him.

After a couple of seconds of disbelieve, he cupped her face between his hands and kissed her back, without thinking, only sinking in this moment he thought would never occur. And he even felt a little bit of hope, after years of not knowing the meaning of that word; maybe… maybe things could get better…

Her kiss started to increase in passion, her hands began to caress his chest, her breathing became faster, and he had to open his eyes to make sure what he was sensing was actually happening: she was on top of him.

"Chere…" he managed to articulate as she started to eagerly unbutton his shirt: "What are y' doin'?"

"Come on, Remy," she huffed: "Isn't this the only thing yah always wanted?"

He opened his mouth to speak but she silenced him with another fierce kiss; then, she went down to his neck and chest…

"Y' really think so?" he said, but she paid no attention: "Rogue…" she finally raised her view: "Dat's what y' think? Y' think I didn't love y' for y'?"

And he saw it again: that look of bitterness in her eyes that seemed to come right from the bottom of her soul. Then, she jumped off him and sat on the opposite side of the bed, with her back to him.

He could hear her dissimulated sobs and picture her face filled with tears:

"Chere…"

"Then WHY did yah leave?!" She burst out at last, standing up to face him: "Why did yah leave me there all alone?"

"I don't know, Rogue, I don't know! 'Cause I'm an idiot, 'cause… I couldn't stand anymore yer lack of hope."

"Mah lack of hope?"

"Yeah! It was always de same: one day y' promised t' trust me, t' trust us, an' den de next entire month y' did nothin' but pushin' me away."

"And yah think Ah had no reasons for it? Yah think it was easy for me to see yah there everyday and play it cool, like nothin' was wrong?"

"I know it wasn't easy," he recognized. "An' dat's another reason why I left."

"Oh Gawd, so it's mah fault now?!" She threw her arms up in the air in frustration.

"Non, I don't know whose fault it was, blame it on me if y' want but… I guess I ended up loosin' hope too." It was so hard to say this out loud, but maybe it was the truth and now he realized that was the biggest mistake he'd ever made, and sure he'd made plenty. "How, chere? How did y' get t' control yer power? When?"

She tried to sweep away the tears in her face with the back of her hand:

"It doesn't matter."

"But why didn't y' let me know somehow?"

She narrowed her eyes in disbelieve before answering:

"Yeah, now that yah bring it up, maybe Ah shoulda call your thieves' crib and leave a message in the answerin' machine: Guess what, Remy? Yah can fuck me now."

"Dieu, chere, don't put it dat way, please." Elbows on his knees and hands holding his forehead, he measured his next words and stood up: "Y' knew I loved y', didn't y'? Y' do, y' know it."

"That was too long ago" she shook her head: "In a whole different life, yah know?"

"Mais…"

"Don't yah see it? Things have changed so much."

"But I haven't! I'm de same one dat loved y' to death."

Rogue sighed and raised her brows: "But obviously Ah do have changed, right?"

"Right" he nodded, walking closer to her: "Why didn't y' stay at de mansion, with everyone else?"

"Ah don't know" she shrugged: "Ah wanted to get away, to live a different life and be on mah own for a while, who knows… Ah was so sick of trainin', of Danger Room and missions and crap… Ah ended up hatin' everyone."

"An' y're better off dis way?"

"At least now Ah can do whatever Ah wanna do."

"An' dis is what y' wanna do? T' live here in de middle of nowhere, with no one around who cares 'bout y'…"

"Ah can take care of mahself."

"…an' hookin' up with guys y' don't even know, Rogue? What de hell's dat?"

"Great." Her sarcastic chuckle was so different from the frank and even a little candid snicker he remembered: "Now Ah'm getting' moral lessons from society's model of rectitude. How many, Remy?" She opened the fridge and took a beer bottle; then, after taking a sip, she continued: "How many people did yah sleep with durin' all this time? I don't know, a hundred? Ah can't even top that."

"Don't y' realize what y're doin' with yer life?" he grabbed her by her shoulders, pulling her closer: "Don't y' care 'bout yourself?"

Her stare went lost for a few moments, like a flash of reality suddenly appeared in front of her eyes:

"Ah thought Ah would… once I got rid of mah power. But now Ah don't even know what to do 'bout anythin'."

"But why don't y' go back t' de institute?"

"Nah!" she brushed him away: "Ah don't wanna get back there ever again."

"Den come with me."

She stared at him like she couldn't believe her ears: "Are yah insane?"

"Come with me, listen, we can…"

"After all this time, this is your answer to everythin'? Don't yah understand? Ah don't wanna be with yah or with anyone else."

"Chere…"

"DON'T CALL ME THAT…!" Remy saw the bottle being tossed against a wall and shredding to pieces. He stayed there, shocked and motionless, staring at her. She continued: "…ever again. Now get outta here."

"No, no, no," he finally said, trying to put his thoughts together: "Y' need t' calm down for a sec."

"Ah don't need anythin'!"

"Rogue, look at me, listen…" he held her wrists.

"Let me go!"

"Think 'bout it, we can start over an'…"

"Ah don't love yah, Remy! Why would Ah go anywhere with someone Ah don't give a shit about?" She didn't have to ask him to let her go again, since he immediately released her, not because he had planed it but because the woman in front of him seemed a total stranger: "It's been too long, yah know?" she crossed her arms over her chest: "Time helps yah to forget. And drinks. And sex."

Remy ran his fingers through his hair in desperation:

"Dis ain't right… dis ain't y', Rogue."

"It is now, so deal with it. Now leave. Mah damn head's still spinnin', Ah gotta sleep."

He saw her crawling back into her bed, like he wasn't even there anymore. What was the point in staying standing there? So he picked up his coat and left, slamming the door shut behind his back.

Maybe it was too late for them.

(…)

Lying awake, watching the sunlight… she had spent about two hours this way, trying to put together in her mind the pieces of the previous night. Her head ached, one of her cheeks too and she felt so tired, or like she lost a part of herself. Again. Hadn't she lost him before already? Then why this feeling of… rupture?

She rubbed her eyes, leaving remains of black mascara in her fingers, and finally propped herself up. She really needed a cigarette right now, so she took it from a drawer and lightened it on. It was so long since she'd wanted to spit all of those things out, right to his face, and she'd finally done it. She should feel better than this.

After holding her messy hair up in a pony tail, she looked around. He'd been here only hours ago; the most important part of her past had been right by her side, among these four walls. And he was gone again, but what could she expect after everything she said? She said she didn't love him; was that true? She didn't know anymore.

And then, she saw it: a piece of paper on the floor, right in front of the door.

She stood up and walked barefoot towards it; then, picked it up and sat on the couch, knees up to her chest. It was so scary to read it.

"…Let's forget last night's nonsense talk an' let's just remember de way we knew we were meant t' be, 'cause I still know it…"

Maybe she shouldn't; maybe she should just forget about this whole thing and move on with her life, or what was left of it.

"…So… if y' remember how much I loved y', please think 'bout it…"

It had been painful enough just to be near him, to hear his voice so close, to see the worried and sad look in his face; it wasn't common: she always remembered him teasing at her or with that smirk in his face… so, why should she keep punishing herself by reading this?

"…If y' remember how y' loved me, come t' N'awlins..."

He already said all he had to say. She did too. It was over.

"…I'll be dere, waitin' for de moment y' decide t' be y'self again..."

She didn't want to cry again, but she couldn't help it… anyway, the paper was turned into a crumbled ball as she went and threw it in the wastepaper basket.

"…If y' remember y', chere, please… don't let yer life become somethin' like mine."

END.

Quote: "I went a long way away from you, Rogue. Without explaining. Without saying goodbye. And then I went a long way away from myself." X-Men, Nº 204.

Note: Please don't be mad at me! I know it's pretty sad and depressing, but I just wanted to write something like this. There are just so many possibilities with Romy. As I said, my next fic (I'll start it soon) will have a happier mood. Btw, the italics are for Remy's letter, which was displayed during the three chaps, just in case someone has doubts about it. So now, even if you're mad at me, or not, please remember to drop me a review! Thanks so much for reading this; hugs for everyone.