Disclaimers: X-men belongs to Marvel and "Careless Whisper" belongs to Seether. I posted the lyrics on my profile. Happy reading folks!
~O*- Careless Whisper-*O~
He watched her through the window, leaning precariously on a tree branch to get a better view. He had kept his promise to her. People were watching over her now, as she slept. People were always watching over her now. And by people, he meant himself. Though sometimes he wondered if perhaps there was another Remy inside him; one who told him to do the things he knew he would come to regret later in his life.
Betraying Rogue had been one of those things. She may have forgiven him for kidnapping her, but he hadn't forgiven himself for using her. He had known that was a sore spot to her. Her own mother had used her, after all. Then everything with Apocalypse happened.
Remy knew he was no better than them. He had used her as well; doing whatever it took to make ends meet with his family, even if it meant using a sensitive, kind-hearted young woman for her powers and lying to her.
He was making it up to her now and had been for the past year and a half. He hadn't been home to New Orleans in over four months, and even his last trip home hadn't been but a week.
He was keeping his promise, and she'd never know.
It's better, non? He told himself.
He couldn't hurt her again this way, and he could make sure no one else did either.
Remy had ripped her faith in him apart, so he was ripping himself apart to make up for it. Tormenting himself, he allowed his body to tread calmly over the tree branches, making his way to her balcony ledge. His thieving skills came in handy as his feet made no sound on the concrete. He stood at the door, gazing in at her figure, wrapped in a warm blanket. Whatever it was that she dreamt of tonight, it was happy. She was smiling softly in her sleep. His heart ached as an inner voice told him it had nothing to do with him, so he had no reason to be happy.
He had broken one of his own base rules:
Never get too close.
He had gotten close to Rogue as he had watched her for those weeks almost two years ago. She hadn't known he was watching then, but he saw everything: the tears she hid at night while everyone slept; the pain she held in watching the boy she had a crush on followed after the red-headed telepath; the agony as she watched a happy couple pass her on the street.
She knew she would never have that, and so did he. It still didn't stop him from wanting her.
She had been pretty then; a young woman that was not quite fully filled out yet. Her young curves and small frame were not beautiful. Not then anyway.
Now…now she was a woman. She had graduated from high school. And she was eighteen. No more growing for her.
He had watched the change in her, blown away at how such a short amount of time could do so much to one person.
Her personality had changed as well. She still got angry easily, but now, when she was attempting to be nice to someone, she put forth more effort. If he was lucky, he might even get to see her smile. She had become a sweeter person in her own way. She was still very much The Rogue, but not so much the bratty teenager that complained when someone stole her bagel in the morning.
So night after night, he perched himself on this tree, after a morning of staying in his apartment and milling about with his usual routine of watching her before passing out on the couch with the television on, only to wake after dinner time to once again take his designated post outside her window.
He had grown to love her during his time spent watching over her. It was then that he realized just how bad he had screwed up.
He couldn't stay with her anyway. Any other normal person wouldn't trust him anymore. He assumed this was how she would be towards him now too. She would always look at him warily, always wonder if he was telling the truth or lying to her again. She would always doubt him if he told her how much he cared. Nothing he said could be taken at face value. As realization dawned on him, he felt a sharp pang shoot through his heart. This was that one time, deep, endless love and adoration everyone wanted in life. That one thing that so many people spent their whole lives searching for; soul mates brought together by fate; eternity. And he had blown it before he'd even had it. He took in a shuddering breath, trying to alleviate some of his pain, before a loud sound shocked him and he jumped back in to his tree, watching from behind the leaves. It was her ringtone.
"I'm never gonna dance again,
These guilty feet have got no rhythm
Though it's easy to pretend
I know you're not a fool
I should've known better then to cheat a friend
And waste a chance that I've been given
So I'm never gonna dance again
The way I danced with you…"
The music trailed off as it paused, only to start again. This time, he saw her pale hand reach out from under her covers to smack it against the offensive object on her nightstand. He watched her as she lazily and wearily opened it and brought it to her ear. Her lips muttered a sleepy "Hullo?" as she used the back of her free hand to scrub at her eyes.
After just a moment, her eyes widened in shock, and he saw her lips form a word; a name really.
Remy sighed. The Canadian was gone again. He had left about a week ago, taking his bike with him after wishing Rogue a good weekend.
He watched her form freeze once more. Her lips weren't moving, but she was nodding at whatever the man was saying to her on the other line. She slowly pulled the covers back, letting her bare feet fall to the floor before picking herself out of her bed and making her way, slowly, to the balcony door. She unlocked it, and stepped out in to the cool air. She shivered and wrapped an arm around her torso as she continued to listen.
"Are…are you sure? Ah mean…"
Remy's ears strained to hear what the man was telling her, but he had no luck. He silently hoped everything was okay.
He watched her nod slowly.
"If you're sure, Logan."
She closed the phone, effectively ending their conversation. Her other arm subconsciously wrapped around her torso as well. She was shifting from one foot to the other, nervously inspecting the area around her. She sighed and let her hands fall to her sides, phone still tight in her grasp.
"Listen. Ah…Ah know you're there, Gambit. So stop hidin'. Come out an' talk to me."
Remy froze. His eyes widened and his throat ran dry. He swore to himself he'd never talk to her. She deserved that much after all he had put her through. He gulped and his heart raced. Her pale green eyes shifted around until they froze upon his own fiery depths. Her lips turned up in to a small smile.
"Are you seriously tryin' ta hide up there? Ya cain't be comfy. Come on, now."
Remy's body moved on its own, his feet making their way slowly across the familiar branch before leaping down to her balcony ledge once more. Again, no noise came from him. She sighed, taking a step back to clear some space for him. He let himself drop, landing on the concrete in front of her. He only stared in silence.
"Why are ya here?" She whispered, not wanting to disturb the quiet that surrounded them.
Remy eyes strayed to the brick of the mansion, etching the grooves and course texture to his memory as he stayed silent. After a moment of that, his gaze fell to his feet. He gulped again, trying to slow his speeding heart. She snapped her fingers and his eyes shot to her's, wide and trying to hide his fear of what was to come. He made sure to keep his distance and stay close to the railing incase he needed to make a hasty retreat.
She just gave him that small smile again.
"How long ya been out here?"
He only shrugged, looking away from her again to the side. In his peripheral vision, he saw her place a hand on her hip as it cocked out. Her other hand lay at her side, still gripping her phone.
"So ya just gonna stay silent? No 'hello'? No nothin'?"
"Ah thought…Ah thought we were…somewhat friends at least. At least…Ah thought that's what we left as. Was Ah wrong?"
He heard the minute desperation in her voice and couldn't keep his gaze from straying to her form. She took a step closer to him, her hand fisting it self as if she were holding herself back from using it for something. He clenched his eyes shut.
"If ya gon' hit me, chere, just get it ov'r wit'. I know ya mus' be hankerin' for it."
A hand shot out and punched his arm, tilting his body away from her by the force put behind it. His opposite hand locked around his arm to still the throbbing.
"Ya damn idiot! Ah was actually worried somethin' was wrong with ya! And why the heck would Ah hit ya? Ya ain't even done nothin' to me!"
Remy let his eyes wander to her's again. She was honest to God upset at him now. Maybe he should have just kept his mouth shut this time…
There's goes that other Remy again; making him do things he can look back on and regret. Damn him.
"Why are you really here, Remy?"
His heart gave a thud at hearing his name flow from her tongue.
"I'm keepin' my promise."
Her brows drew close and her head tilted to the side in confusion.
"I said I'd watch over ya, cherie. I meant it."
She gave a small laugh, her hand coming up to cover her mouth so she didn't wake her roommate. Her voice was muffled behind it.
"Oh my Gawd. Ah wasn't expectin' ya to really do it. Ah thought you was just tryin' to flirt or somethin'."
He frowned. Did he really come off so shallow to everyone or was it just her?
Her giggle (honestly, a giggle; came with the new personality, or so he assumed) was quiet behind her hand. She took another step forward and placed a hand on his arm, her skin only touching the sleeve of his jacket.
"Relax, Swamp Rat. You look like someone just told you the store was outta playin' cards. It's sweet of ya to keep it up, but how long have ya been at it?"
His heart thrummed loudly in his ears at her closeness. He could feel her fingers wrapped around his forearm through his jacket; could feel the warmth of her skin in the cold night. That brought him back to reality.
"Chere, it's cold out here. Maybe you should head back inside, non?"
He expertly dodged the question, but she was not one to forget so easily.
She raised an eyebrow and her fingers tightened their grip on his arm.
"Not 'til you tell me how long ya been out here. Now tell, or Ah have to find out the hard way."
She raised her bare right hand as proof of her threat.
He sighed dejectedly, his head lolling forward lazily to rest on his chest. He mumbled his response.
"Do what, Cajun? Couldn't quite get that. Say it one more time."
"I said 'A while'." He raised his head slightly so he could get a better view from under his lashes. He was just waiting on her to blow up.
Instead all he got was a softened smile that lit up her face and brightened her eyes. Her other hand clipped her phone to the waist band of her pajama pants and came to rest around the same arm, her hands encircling it. She took a half step closer, her arms bending at the elbow as she brought herself closer.
"You look like Ah just kicked ya puppy, Cajun. Get that look off a face. Ya killin' me." She said softly. Her smile brightened as she looked him in the eyes, though she had to dip down a bit to get the right angle.
One of her hands trailed from his arm to his chest where it was splayed out across his shirt. Her skin was such a beautiful contrast, he noted, from the dark, inky grey of his tee shirt.
"Come on, Remy. Let's get inside. Ah'm cold and Ah want some hot chocolate."
If she didn't feel his heart hammering in his chest, it was a wonder. He gulped down some air that had gotten caught in his throat as the implication behind her words came to him.
"Come on, Remy. Let's get inside. Ah'm cold and Ah want some hot chocolate."
"Come on, Remy. Let's get inside. Ah want ya to come home. Ah want ya to keep me company."
The look, the raw emotion held in her pale green orbs was all he needed to see. It was all the evidence in the world that could convince him to do what he was about to do.
He took the quick half step left between them to wrap her in his arms, encompassing her shoulders as his cheek fell to her hair. He felt her arms find their way in to his jacket and around his back. He could feel her hands clutching his shirt in her fists while her head found a place on his shoulder to rest.
Other Remy be damned! This was just too good to throw away. If he had to fight himself for it, then by God, he would. If she said she forgave him, then he did too. As long as he learned from his mistake, that was all that mattered, right?
He slowly drew away from her as he felt her shiver from the chill in the air. He swiftly removed himself from her form, slipping his arms from his jacket, only to throw it around her shoulders. His hands busied themselves with tightening it around her shuddering body. He watched in amusement as she let her arms slide through the sleeves, her fingers barely poking out of the end. His eyes travelled up the jacket back to her face, focusing on the key points; her lips (devoid of the harsh purple she wore during the day), to her nose (tinged with red from the chill), her rose colored cheeks (also from the chill, but his pride was telling him their embrace helped it along), then to her eyes. They were bright and focused solely on him. They never gave way or turned to look at something else when he was staring straight in them. She was one of the few who could do that; look straight in to his eyes and not quiver with some form of discomfort.
He stepped around her, wrapping an arm around her shoulders as he led her inside. Out of the chill. In to her home. In to his home.
Things weren't perfect; not by a long shot. But he figured this was about as perfect as it got.
But then, they were both still young. They still had time to perfect their lives together.