Summary: Gambit is back in town and is somehow under the impression that Rogue is interested, couldn't be because maybe she led him on? Insanity ensues the night Rogue does something unexpected. ROMY.
Disclaimer: I do not own the X-men or am I affiliated with Marvel in any way.
Author's notes: After plenty of requests to do some X-men: Evo, here it is. This is especially dedicated to ShadowFax999, who I know has been waiting patiently for me to put out some Evo Romy goodness.
A gal knows when she's being followed. Call it female intuition or whatever. I could hear the footsteps matching my own, although not on the pavement behind me.
Of course with him, walking on the sidewalk would be too common. No, he's stalking along the fence posts with the grace and ease of a great, big ol' jungle cat and the balance of an acrobat.
And speaking of stalking…
"You following me again, swamp rat?" I asked, turning to look up at the boy on the fence posts.
He gave me a charming smile and languid shrug. "Maybe I'm jus' trying to catch up," he answered in his slow, easy drawl. "If I was following you, you wouldn't know it."
I believed him.
He jumped down from the fence, landing dramatically onto his feet and at my side. Gambit is the only boy I know who could sneak up anywhere without getting caught. The only reason I'd heard his footsteps was 'cause he wanted me to.
See, I kinda, sorta, possibly implied to him that maybe I was just a slightly, tiny, smidgen of a bit interested in him. Now he's taken to showing up everywhere, deliberately having our paths cross.
I act all annoyed and put off by it, but honestly, I kinda like it. A girl's gotta admire a boy with that kind of ambition. See, I'm not exactly the girl guys are lining up to take to the prom, let alone take out anywhere. As if being an outed mutant wasn't bad enough, it's my mutation a guy has gotta worry about.
One touch and what's yours is mine. Depending on how long I decide to let my skin touch yours depends on the headache you'll wake up with afterwards. Yeah, that's a right. A minor side effect is slipping into unconsciousness.
Gambit knows that.
Hell, I've knocked that boy out twice and he just keeps coming back for more. Both times he deserved it…
Well, at least once he deserved it. The first time I sorta kissed him while being controlled by another mutant, but the second time, it was his own fault. Definitely his own fault. Why I should have any inkling towards some slippery, little, swamp rat is beyond me. It's easy to forget the guy did kidnap me and bring me to New Orleans awhile back.
I will admit that had I really wanted to, I could have left at any time. It's not like he really held me against my will. He'd needed my help and didn't know how to ask for it. I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy his company. And at the time, I think he was right, I did want to leave. Going with him just provided me the company.
It's funny how when you decide to leave, you realize just how important your family really is and you find yourself going home. I thought I'd left Gambit in New Orleans with only a playing card in my pocket to remember him by.
I was wrong.
You know that song 'The Cat Came Back'?
I honestly think it was written for him.
Normal rules don't seem to apply to him, and I'm not sure if it's because he's a criminal or a mutant or both. He showed up back in Bayville about a month ago and apparently doesn't seem phased at all that he'd kidnapped me and permanently ended up on Logan's blacklist. If anything, he seems to think that makes him more appealing to me.
Right now he's walking too close beside me, like a lover does, and I don't really mind. So, I guess he's right.
I do find him appealing. Imagine that.
We are reaching the gates to the mansion, which is where he always leaves me, kissing my gloved hand in a grand gesture before disappearing off into the woods, like some idiotic Robin Hood. He's not gone. I'll see him later this evening, whether I want to or not anyway.
I want to.
I watch him fade off into the trees and briefly wonder if I should call him back and invite him in. Logan would just love that.
It's no surprise to Logan that Gambit and I have been hanging out. Nothing gets past that guy's nose. In fact, since we've started hanging out, Gambit has become the bane of Logan's existence.
Logan is a 'teacher' here at Xavier's. The toughest I've got, and he prides himself in the security system he's designed to keep undesirables away from the mansion and keep us safe.
However, Gambit keeps getting onto the grounds undetected.
That bayou boy can get past every single one of Logan's carefully set up security precautions and find his way up onto my balcony. The reason he ever gets caught is because of Logan's unparalleled sense of smell.
It's become a nightly practice to watch Logan chase him from the grounds in what I consider a very entertaining display of heroics and jack-assery. Logan has become obsessed with the mansion's security and is determined to find a way to detect Gambit that doesn't include using his nose. To Gambit, it's become a game. He actually leaves a playing card behind, almost as a sort of taunt to Logan…and a romantic gesture to me. I like to think of it as him proving his love…not that I'm that kind of girl. I figure once I've collected all fifty-two cards, I'll date him. Officially date him, y'know announce it and stuff. I also kinda, accidentally let that slip to him.
So, cards have been appearing everywhere in the mansion and on the grounds, and needless to say, Logan is livid.
For one, I've got a known criminal vying for my affection, and two, he's insulting Logan's pride getting past the security.
Logan's not much of a fun and games man, and doesn't enjoy the mockery Gambit has made of the mansion security. Not that I blame him. He also doesn't like me showing any interest in the Cajun, says I'm encouraging bad behaviour.
And that bumps up Gambit's appeal even more. His game with Logan has become a love letter to me. It's real hard for a gal not be flattered by that.
I'm not Kitty and I am certainly not Jean. I'd slit my wrists before I became that goody-goody and prissy. I'm not really like any of the girls here at the mansion. I'm not timid like Amara, or rebellious for the sake of attention like Boom Boom. I'm just me.
I like being alone best.
At least I did up until Gambit came back in town.
It drives Kitty nuts when she sees him sitting patiently up on our balcony in the evenings. I'm not sure if it's just because he's there, or if it's because he's there for me that bothers her more. Kitty's a little egocentric, and I'm sure it just burns her up knowing someone that's interested in me can get past Logan's security. You wouldn't be catching her main man, Lance, accomplishing that feat.
As for me, I kinda like him sitting on the balcony. He never comes inside and doesn't stay long or cause any trouble, just long enough to give a slight wave and leave a card before Logan chases him off the property.
I've almost got a full deck now; cards have been turning up everywhere, even in the Danger Room. I think even the Professor is annoyed about that one, although he hasn't flat out said it. I'd really rather not get the Professor angry, he's always so patient and diplomatic, but I don't really want Gambit to quit. Not while he's so close to the finish line.
I can't say I've ever had a guy chase after me, and even though the conditions of my mutation are a huge hindrance for romance, he hasn't given up or even implied that it's a problem. I guess it's just me that thinks that way. I know I shouldn't encourage him, but sometimes I think that if anyone could handle dating me, it'd be him. We actually do have a lot in common and he is pretty cute, in a scruffy, rebel sorta way. I don't know, I guess he just seems like my type.
I never really thought I had a type until Kitty brought it up. She said he was 'sooo my type that it isn't even funny'. What does that even mean?
Is he like an antisocial male counter part?
I should really avoid reading too much into this, it's not like I'm playing with a full deck yet anyway…pardon the pun.
It's close to ten o'clock when I catch him sitting Indian style on the balcony ledge with his hands casually tucked under his chin. He hasn't been there for very long, but I can't say for certain. I smile at him, acknowledging that he's there. He gives his usual slight nod, and while I'm watching his eyes, a card magically appears in his hand. He's about to leave it there on the balcony ledge, when I do something unexpected by both of us.
I'm opening up the balcony door.
A blatant invitation to come into my room.
I don't know why I did it, maybe I not in the mood to be alone tonight. Maybe I'm feeling a little rebellious myself. It's the one room he's never left a card in. Okay, that might be an exaggeration. No one has ever found a card in their bedroom. He does have some ethics.
He hesitates in the doorway like a vampire from an old black and white movie, and his eyes glow a soft red before he takes his first careful step into the room, closing the door behind him.
God, I think my heart just fell in my stomach. Suddenly I feel nervous and giddy all at the same time. I don't want to use the word 'love' but it's pretty close, I certainly won't use the word 'lust' because I know that this is not what that is.
"Evening, Rogue," he greets casually, like it's no big deal to be here, alone, unsupervised in my room. He fidgets with the sleeve of his coat, in what I can assume is more from habit than nerves.
I wonder how long before Logan catches on to his scent and is knocking down my door. I betcha anything Gambit's wondering the same thing too.
"Hi," I say just a little too loud, and a little too awkwardly. Get a grip girl, it's not like a boy's never been in here before. Just not unsupervised and after hours, that's all.
There is this awkward, dead silence between us, and for the first time, I think that maybe he's a little nervous too. He glances at the closed bedroom door as if he wants to check for a lock. I almost let him.
Instead, I find myself inviting him to sit down on my bed. My bed of all places!
He sits down beside me with the greatest of ease, like we've done this several times before. We sit side by side. Me, nervously playing with the stray lock of hair that always falls in my eye, and he, with his hands clasped carefully in his lap.
"Nice bed," he comments and I feel a rush of heat hit my cheeks.
I'm blushing. Honest to God blushing. I turn away so he doesn't notice. I have this dreaded Kitty-version of myself pop into my head. If I start giggling or fawning…
It's imperative that I keep up my tough-girl persona. I wouldn't want him thinking that I like him that much.
Although, I do have him sitting here alone with me on my bed, so the point is now probably moot.
"Yeah, it's alright," I finally answer as casually as I can.
I make the mistake of turning to look at him, only to find those beautiful eyes of his looking at me with great interest. I like his eyes a lot. Kitty thinks they're creepy, but me? Well, I think they're sexy, dangerous eyes. Eyes a gal should be wary of. Nothing can hold a candle to those eyes.
When I finally tear my gaze from those eyes, I realize that he's actually quite handsome. Funny, I never noticed before. Must be on account of how close he's sitting to me. Up close he looks different—handsomer.
He's turned his upper body to face me, resting his weight on one arm, and inexplicably I've turned my body towards his. I can only describe it as the way a sunflower follows the sun. Lord, now I'm a poet.
He tilts his head and leans in, and I know where this is going and how it will end, yet, I'm tilting my head in the opposite direction so that when our lips meet it's at the best angle. This is a really bad idea. He knows it, I know it, and neither of us is going to do anything about it.
I get the heady rush of him almost instantly when his lips brush mine. He tastes like licorice whips—at least that's the closest comparison.
Instinctively, my arms have found their way around his neck, and his tongue has made its way past my lips and it's wonderful.
The saddest part is letting go.
"Definitely worth it," he manages to rasp weakly before he passes out on my bed.
I'm blushing again, because I know he's telling the truth. I can feel it in my head, and the memory of the kiss swirls around delightfully in his perspective in my mind.
My first real kiss.
I fall back onto the bed, lying down beside him. I am giddy and light-headed, a combination of us both. So much for not leading a boy on.
The memory and sensation of this one simple, small kiss is suddenly the event of the year to me. The magnitude of this moment is almost incomprehensible. I've kissed a boy.
Me! Rogue the untouchable, kissed a boy.
And now he's unconscious on my bed…
I glance quickly at the clock. I've got at least fifteen minutes before Kitty comes up to our room to get ready for bed. I have no idea how long I have before Logan catches his scent. I have an unconscious Cajun lying on my bed. There is no mistaking what we were doing if he's caught here. All my euphoria is suddenly replaced with dread.
If we get caught I am in so much trouble. There is no telling the extreme work load Logan is going to deal me as punishment. Not to mention that I will have officially fed the gossip line of the mansion all it will ever need for the rest of the year. I can feel the panic rising like bile in my throat. I will not be able to live this down if I get caught. Boom Boom won't let me. Jean will look adoringly at me, like I've finally come into full bloom, opening up. Kitty will want details and think that now that we've both got boyfriends we should double date, and become best friends…
Everything is going too fast. I'm hyperventilating and nothing bad has even happened yet. I haven't been caught.
I still have time. This is just like a mission. If I treat this like I have a proper goal and objective in mind, I can get away with this.
First, I need to get him off of my bed. He's the first thing Kitty will see when she barges in here. Plus, it rids us of the evidence that we were doing anything.
I gingerly grab his limp arm and tug. Jesus! He's heavy. I had not expected that. I have no idea how much he weighs, not more than Dukes, obviously, but more than any guy on our team. I dimly realize that when I grab his arm, it's solid muscle. I know this is really not the time to check him out, but what can I say? I'm impressed. He's heavy as hell, but it definitely works in his favour. I like a solid guy—just not when I have to move him from my bed.
As if on cue, and to make my night a nightmare, I hear the door latch and Kitty's voice in the hallway.
He's a tough guy, he can take it. I rationalize to myself as I shove all my weight against him and watch his unconscious body tumble to the floor along with mine. I land on top of him with a dull thud and quickly scamper back up, popping my head up over the bed. So long as Kitty doesn't walk over to this side, I can hide him. It's too bad I don't have enough time to shove him under the bed, because that would work too.
"Um, what are you doing on the floor? Did you just, like, fall out of bed?" Kitty asks from the doorway while staring at me like I'm a freak. At the very least she's given me an excuse as to why I am on the floor.
"Yeah," I answer gruffly. "So what?"
"So nothing, but I heard you hit the ground from out there. You must weigh a ton!" Kitty comments and I fight the urge to bark back that not all of us have her delicate, petite frame. That, and if it would have just been me fall, she wouldn't have heard a thing. It's not my fault Gambit weighs like two hundred pounds.
I manage to give Kitty a snide, frosty look and she rolls her eyes and continues with her bedtime routine. She's really good at promptly ignoring me when she wants to, thankfully this evening she wants to.
I haven't gotten up off of him yet and realize that I am straddling the guy's pelvis. My face heats up again. God, if I can manage not to blush for five minutes…
I'm wondering how odd it will be if I just casually open up our balcony door and when she's in bed, just pull him out onto the balcony. Maybe hide him in the shadows somewhere, but Logan would most definitely catch him and I know I don't want that.
"Kitty?" I ask suddenly as the girl is pulling her shirt over her head flashing me the tiniest tits on the planet covered in, I kid you not, a red and white polka dot bra. Jesus, where does she shop? Clowns-R-Us?
I catch myself staring in horror at her choice in underwear and continue back on track.
"Do you know where Logan is? I haven't seen him at all tonight."
I have had Gambit in my room for close to a half hour now, Logan should have been here demanding to know what was going on.
"Oh, he's out somewhere. Took off on his bike earlier," she answers in bored voice, turning her back to me and slipping off the bra.
Logan's gone? Finally, a silver lining to my dark cloud. I can just shove him out the door once Kitty's asleep and no one will be none the wiser that I snuck a boy into my room and made out with him. Suddenly I remember Gambit. I turn my attention back to him, hoping he's alright—
He's awake and sitting up. Even while I'm still straddling him, I hadn't heard or felt him move. How does he do that? It's unbelievably infuriating.
He's got this dazed look on face. Bewildered almost, and he stares stupidly at me for a single moment before his eyes shift in a slight frown, their attention caught by something else. I turn and look in the same direction to see Kitty slipping off her pants.
Without thinking, I gasp and yank my glove off, brushing his face with my bare hand. He promptly falls into unconsciousness again. Kitty doesn't even turn at the sound of the 'thump' his limp upper body makes when it hits the floor a second time.
It's only after the fact that I realize what a stupid move that was. He was awake. He could have snuck out on his own. Instead, I had to react to my sense of decency for Kitty's sake.
I've caught brief thoughts from him and can't help but smile when he compares Kitty's body to that of a twelve year old boy. It's nice to have it mentally confirmed that Kitty does nothing for him. I don't know why, but it makes me feel a heck of a lot better.
Not that one kiss makes him my boyfriend, so I really shouldn't care.
Kitty is in her pajamas and is crawling into her bed. She looks at me again with an idiotic face.
"Why are you still on the floor? Aren't you getting ready for bed?" she asks me as if I've completely lost my mind.
"I was just getting up," I answer in a haughty tone, rising to my feet. "I ain't really all that tired and was just searching for something to read."
"Oh. Well, here." She reaches over the side of her bed and tosses me a girlie fashion magazine. "You should take the love quiz. It's totally accurate. It described my relationship with Lance to a tee."
She can't be serious. No one actually does these quizzes and believes in the results, do they? Mesmerized, I find myself on my bed morbidly flipping through the magazine. I stop at a page decked out in hearts with a header that reads: 'Is He Your Boyfriend?' The quiz is multiple choice. I glance over at Kitty snuggled in her bed, her back to me and face to her wall. How can a girl as book smart as her fall for this obvious dreck?
Question one. When you see your crush does he: A) Say 'Hi' and offer to carry your books. B) Turn away in the opposite direction. C) Ask what your plans for the evening are.
This is the stupidest thing I've ever read, and none of it applies to me anyway. Carry my books? Was this written in the 1950's? I flip through the pages and find an article about 'Ways to Get Him to Notice You', when I hear a deep, masculine snicker beside me.
And I can see him sitting up, reading over my shoulder from the corner of my eye.
If my face was red before, now it's gone fire engine red. I find myself slamming the magazine down and glaring at him. One, I was so not reading the magazine seriously, and two, if Kitty hears him it's game over. I press my finger to my lips and hiss at him in a low whisper, "Shut up before she hears you!"
The amused grin and playful look in his eyes is enough to undo me. How did a guy like him possibly become interested in a girl like me?
We both freeze when Kitty rolls over. I have to get him out of here now. I'm all for risks, but I'm not about to be discovered by Kitty of all people. I signal towards the balcony door to him and thankfully, he's not dim and catches on to my frantic motions.
We're both sneaking out the balcony door and I close it softly behind me in an effort to drown out the noise we make out here. Kitty is asleep. I'm sure of it, but I don't want her waking up, because even though Gambit is back in his usual spot on the balcony, I'm out here with him and that's not something I've done before. No need to give Kitty any reason to think we're serious yet.
I'm busy gazing into those ruby eyes when he softly takes my hands in his, and with the pale moonlight shining down on us and crickets chirping peacefully in grass, I swear it's like a scene from Romeo and Juliet. It's an odd comparison. In a way we really are tragic, star-crossed lovers, but right now, here outside, none of that matters. It doesn't matter that he's not one of us, and it doesn't matter that he'll fall unconscious whenever we touch. It doesn't matter because I like him and he likes me.
It seems foolish to tempt fate once more, but with the new ridiculously romantic outdoor setting, we're drawn to each other once again. His tall frame is dipping down to meet my lips and I cannot wait. I can feel his breath warm against my face and I'm closing my eyes and leaning in—
"Son of bitch!" Logan yells from the ground and Gambit and I quickly jerk apart.
"Damn it, Gambit! I swear to God if you don't come down here right now—" Logan is yelling, and I am so embarrassed. Leave it to Logan to make a scene. Lights flicker on in previously darkened rooms to catch all the commotion.
Gambit turns and gives me a lazy smile as he backs away to the edge of the balcony.
"I'm serious, kid!" Logan's growling from below. "If I have to climb up there and get you—"
Gambit's eyebrows are raised in amusement and I stifle a giggle when I catch his smug grin. He gives me a charming salute and bow before he leaps backwards off the balcony.
And like the stereotypical girl from a romantic movie, I rush exuberantly to the edge, grinning adoringly at him as he catches a tree branch and disappears into the darkness.
I know which direction he's gone off to, only because I watch the mad comedy play out below me as Logan takes off like a bat out of hell into the shadows, cursing all the way. Minutes later, a defeated and very annoyed Logan appears back in the light from the windows and yells at everyone to get back into bed.
My thief has yet again managed to steal away safely into the night and I'm feeling just as smug as him. My only disappointment is that there is no card left behind. A feat as grand as this one deserves to be commemorated with a card.
Oh well. I sigh as I head back inside and immediately slip into my pajamas. I am about to climb into bed and try to sleep when I notice it sitting on top of my pillow.
My grin is probably the widest it's ever been as I deftly snatch the playing card from my pillow. Of course he would have left one on my bed. It's a place in the mansion he's never been until tonight. I pull open the drawer on my nightstand and take out the pile of cards I've collected, placing my newest card on top. It looks like a full deck.
Curiosity and excitement consume me, and I know I won't sleep until I know just how many cards I need to collect before it's official. I start frantically counting like a maniac.
When I've finished counting, I stare down at all the cards spread face-up across my bed.
Fifty-two cards in total.
Hmmm, guess I've got a boyfriend.