Heard this song on the radio and this little story popped into my head and I had to get it down. Enjoy!
Disclaimer: I own nothing! All characters depicted belong to Marvel and Listen to Your Heart is the property of Roxette.
Listen to Your Heart
She had always watched them. They were her friends and she was contented in watching them, watching their passion for each other spark and grow as only a wild fire could. They loved each other and she never wanted to see them get hurt.
That's why, when Rogue had returned from an especially traumatizing mission in which her own foster mother had brutally murdered one woman, severely crippled another and, when her own daughter stood in her way, simply thrust a knife into her gut without any hesitation, Storm could tell immediately something wasn't right with the normally near invulnerable young woman. Though in all truthfulness, Storm knew that Rogue hadn't been right for a long time, ever since her mutation had gone haywire on her and she was in constant pain due to it, something she hadn't felt for so long she had long forgotten the strange sensation.
Storm and Beast had gotten there as the jet landed; all their medical supplies ready in order to try with everything they had to keep Moira alive. But as Rogue stepped out of the jet, her head hung and her shoulders slumped, they knew nothing more could be done. As Rogue reached them she stumbled, falling right into Storm's arms, Rogue looked up at the African Goddess with weary eyes. She looked lost and without hope, but before Storm could say anything to her defeated friend Beast interrupted.
Rogue looked down to her red stained abdomen as if for the first time.
"Is jus' that Beast, blood. Wound healed fine."
"…Moira?" Storm asked quietly, even though she already knew the answer.
"She's gone." It was Wolverine speaking now as he wheeled a gurney off the jet. Instead of holding the body of their long time friend, it held the weakened form of the woman who had caused all the damage. A strange smile on her blue lips.
Beast swiftly went to Logan's side. He may have held nothing but the darkest of emotions towards the woman known as Mystique, but he would not ignore his Hippocratic Oath.
"Rahne's still inside the jet Storm, she refuses to leave Moira." Logan spoke up.
"You will be okay, Rogue?"
Rogue only nodded silently as she straightened herself up. She refused to look in the direction of her foster mother, and as Storm made her way to the jet, Rogue wrapped her arms around herself and started walking out of the hanger and towards the mansion, only to stop in her tracks as Mystique's angry voice shouted out from behind her.
"Don't you leave me! I will not allow you to abandon me like Irene did! Do you hear me! I'm the only mother you have ever known! Don't you leave me!" Mystique was becoming frantic as she struggled against Logan and Beast as though her life depended on it.
"Hold her still!"
Rogue turned and made heavy deliberate steps, as though she were in a trance, towards the woman she once called mother. And, as Storm, Logan and Beast watched, Rogue looked down at Mystique in confusion. What did she see if the shape shifter's eyes? Was it fear? The Mystique Rogue knew feared nothing, yet it was unmistakable as Mystique's voice came out quietly; begging for Rogue to hear her.
"Please don't leave me…Anna."
Rogue bared her teeth in anger, and before anyone could stop her, she flipped over the gurney, sending Mystique sprawling to the floor. Storm wasn't sure if she would have stopped there, but Logan held her back and, unable to do anything more, she collapsed against him, sobbing. Storm rushed over to aide Beast, only able to watch as Logan led Rogue away from the one woman who was supposed to protect her as only a mother could.
When Storm went to check on Rogue after they had stabilized Mystique and had Rahne settled in one of the guest rooms, she wondered if Gambit even knew that Rogue had returned. Storm hadn't seen him since he had gone out for a few drinks to unwind after their own successful mission, perhaps he had not returned yet.
Storm knocked softly on Rogue's door and when no answer came, she turned the knob and opened it slightly, peering into the dark room. Something was off about the atmosphere of the room, but Storm couldn't quite put her finger on what it was.
Rogue sat silently on her bed, unaware of Storm's presence. She was staring down at something she held in her hands. An old photo.
Rogue looked up, slightly surprised.
"Oh…hey 'Ro." Rogue smiled weakly, knowing why the weather witch was checking in on her, "Ah'm fine sug, don't need ta worry over me none."
But Storm could see something in the wake of her smile and she got a strange notion from the look in Rogue's eyes. The Mississippi river rat, so full of life and spunk, looked suddenly defeated, as though she was ready to give up.
Storm stared at her for a moment, unsure if she should leave or not. Finally she spoke up.
"May I sit down?"
Rogue shrugged and shuffled over on the end of her bed, making room for Storm beside her, the old tattered photo still resting between her fingers. She kept her gaze downcast, not wanting Storm to see the fear that shone in her eyes.
After several moments of silence, Rogue spoke up, asking the one question that had been on her mind since she had gotten back, though she wasn't sure she wanted to know the answer in all truthfulness.
"Is she okay?"
Storm hesitated before calmly answering.
"She's stabilized. She'll survive."
"Oh." Rogue answered, unsure if that made her feel any better.
"What is that photo of?" Storm asked cautiously, trying to change the subject, unaware that the photo was of Mystique, Irene and Rogue when she was much younger.
"This?" Rogue looked at the photo as though she had forgotten she was holding it. She handed it to Storm to examine.
"It's just an old memory."
Storm stared at the young girl in the photo. Rogue seemed so happy there. She smiled beautifully as Mystique wrapped her arms around Rogue protectively, adoringly. Irene stood straight, her hand on Mystique's shoulder. They all looked happy. It seemed a bit strange to Storm, viewing her enemy in some of her most personal moments, happy and smiling. A family.
"Ya try an' build this love, but that love just falls apart. An' you have this little piece of heaven that just turns too dark." Rogue spoke up suddenly, interrupting Storm's thoughts.
Storm tilted her head in Rogue's direction, waiting for her to continue. She didn't have to wait long.
"Ah keep thinkin' that Ah shoulda been there for her…after Irennie. Maybe if Ah had just been around more…maybe she wouldn't have gone so crazy. Ah wonder if this fight is worthwhile, ya know?" Rogue, who had been looking to the ceiling, looked to Storm as though in search of some answer that the African goddess could not give. Rogue sighed.
"All the precious moments seem ta get lost in the tide. They're just swept away an' nothin' is what it seems is it? Sometimes there's this feeling, as though ya suddenly belong ta someone else's dreams."
Storm didn't like seeing her friend so lost looking. She understood how Rogue could feel so frustrated, Storm was devoted to Charles Xavier's dream and had agreed to follow him voluntarily. Rogue, though she had come to the mansion of her own free will, didn't have much choice in the matter, her powers becoming far too much for her to handle, and all that decision did was tear the only family she had ever known apart. And in the end, had it even been worth it? Sure, Carol had been purged from her psyche, but that had not been Xavier's doing, and she was still no closer to controlling her powers as she had been the day she had come to the mansion, if anything her control seemed to have gotten worse in the last few weeks. Perhaps Rogue believed in Xavier's dream of peaceful co-existence between human and mutant, but would she have chosen such a path had she known what it would do to her family.
"Sometimes Ah wonder if maybe it wouldn't have gotten this bad, if meh an' Carol hadn't brought the fight with Mastermold ta Kelly an' his wife, if she hadn't worried about tryin' ta save meh…maybe she'd still be alive an' Kelly wouldn't have been pushed over the edge. Maybe there wouldn't be all this hate, an' Mystique wouldn't have this fight she is so determined to finish..." Rogue sighed as she shifted her gaze back to the ceiling.
"Guess Ah'm just scared that Ah might hurt someone else, it seems like mah decisions haven't always been the best when it comes ta mah family an' the people Ah love." Rogue went silent for a moment as she contemplated such decisions. Then she turned back to Storm with a smile on her tired face.
"Listen ta meh, ramblin' on. Shoulda, woulda, coulda. None o' that matters now does it 'Ro? We just gotta do our best."
But Storm could see through the smile Rogue wore to please her.
"Guess Ah'm just exhausted. Think Ah'm just gonna crawl inta bed an' try ta sleep."
Storm nodded before carefully placing her arms around Rogue's shoulder and pulling her into an embrace.
"Sleep well my friend. And please stop finding things to dwell upon. Remember that if it weren't for you, Mastermold might have destroyed us all. And Mystique would never have shared you, eventually she would have made you choose where you're loyalties lay. What has happened to her is not your fault, only her own for pushing everyone away."
As Storm stood up and turned to leave, she turned once more towards Rogue.
"Would you like me to send Gambit up to see you when he returns? I'm sure he'd be happy to do so." Storm asked. Rogue looked up, a strange look on her face.
"Oh…nah. But 'Ro? Could ya tell him…just…" Rogue seemed to stumble on her words slightly.
"Just tell him Ah missed him, an…that…well, Ah'll see him soon." Rogue smiled weakly.
"I shall do that. Good night Rogue."
Storm sat on the staircase that ended in the foyer, opposite the huge oak front doors of the mansion. She wondered how long she might have to wait, and if, by the time Gambit returned, it would be too late. She didn't have to wonder long however, the door to the mansion opening easily as Gambit stepped in. He didn't look as though he had had too many drinks and as he looked at Storm, who was now standing on the bottom step of the stairs, he knew immediately that she had been waiting for him.
"What's goin' on, Stormy?"
Storm instinctively stiffened at the use of his childish term of endearment towards her, but decided to ignore it. Instead she spoke calmly.
"I am worried about Rogue." Storm said, "I believe you should go see her."
Gambit eyed Storm suspiciously, his normally placid demeanor quickly disappearing.
"What be wrong wit Rogue Storm? Is she back?"
Storm nodded, though she wasn't sure for how much longer, but she didn't say this to Gambit.
"Mystique was on Muir Isle. She killed Moira and took away Rahne's mutation." Storm's tone darkened as she said this, her mind flashing back to the memories of when the same weapon had been used on her to take away her powers.
"She almost killed Rogue, but she didn't know that Rogue's powers have been mutating. Mystique was about to kill Rahne, Rogue was forced to critically wound her own mother."
Gambit's eyes widened.
"Mon dieu! Is Rogue okay?"
"I believe physically she is fine, but emotionally… " Storm's words trailed off as Gambit rushed past her and up the stairs, presumably making his way to Rogue's room. Storm followed behind him, stopping in the doorway of Rogue's room.
It seemed that it was too late, Storm saw that Rogue was already gone, her balcony doors left open, but Gambit wasn't one to just give up. He ran out onto the small balcony and griping the railing tightly beneath his hands, he yelled out.
Cautiously Storm took a few steps into the room, only enough so that she was able to see through the balcony doors, allowing her a view of Rogue floating in the night air before Gambit. Rogue spun around, surprised as she faced Gambit.
"Oh." Rogue managed to say quietly, as though she had been caught doing something she wasn't supposed to. Guilt was all over her face. She looked away from Gambit eyes which always seemed to burn into her soul.
But Gambit wouldn't take his eyes off her. He watched Rogue and Storm wondered if the pair was even aware of her presence in the room behind them. She doubted it and briefly thought about leaving, but she wanted to make sure Rogue would be okay, that they both would be.
"Ah have ta go Remy."
Rogue stared at Gambit without answering and Storm wondered if Rogue knew why she felt she had to leave. Finally Rogue spoke up.
"Ah'm afraid. Ah'm afraid Ah'm gonna hurt ya, an' that would kill meh, Remy. Ah've hurt too many of the people Ah love. Ah'm…afraid."
"So ya t'ink dis ain't gon hurt neh? Ya leavin' wit'out so much as tellin' me? Dat would kill me chere." Gambit's voice wasn't angry, if anything it was filled with concern and understanding; perhaps he understood the strange urge to leave before you hurt those around you. Rogue stared down blankly at him.
"There are these voices that want ta be heard…" Rogue started to say but trailed off feebly. Storm got the feeling that there was so much Rogue wanted to mention but she probably couldn't find the words.
Storm saw Rogue bite her lip and knew the young river rat was now reconsidering her decision to leave. Gambit spoke.
"Chere, Remy want ta help ya." Gambit pleaded with Rogue. "I don' know what be goin' on in ya head right now Rogue, but I will do everyt'ing I can ta help ya through it. I know de risks an' I don' care. I love ya."
Gambit reached out for Rogue and as she stared down at him silently, it was as if she was suddenly reminded of the scent of magic, the beauty that had been when love was wilder than the wind.
But still Rogue hesitated, and as Storm watched the two lovers she found herself holding her breath as she silently pleaded to Rogue: 'Listen to your heart when he's calling for you. Listen to your heart there's nothing else you can do. I don't know where you're going and I don't know why, but listen to your heart before you tell him goodbye.'
A small smile slipped onto Rogue's lips, as if she had heard Storm's silent prayer, and she reached down to Gambit, taking the hand he offered to her and gently landing in front of him. Storm let out a silent breath as Gambit pulled Rogue to him, tightly wrapping her in his embrace as though he never wanted to let go.
"Don' scare me like dat." Gambit whispered softly into Rogue's hair.
Storm smiled and slipped silently out of the room; unseen by the couple on the balcony. She was satisfied that they would be okay, that they might be able to deal with their pain and suffering as only two young lovers could.