Chapter 33: Epilogue
It had been a couple of days and everything at the mansion was back to normal again. Professor Xavier was happy to know that the police from the efforts of a certain officer on the scene had reported how the X-Men were only there to help and the press coverage had been slightly helpful to show the world that mutants weren't the enemy that they feared. When it become public knowledge that the men they fought were all non-mutants that only helped to show that not all mutants weren't violent criminals.
Still, there were those that said that all people with powers were dangerous and also there were those that tried to take up the advantage of the situation. But these were small matters, in fact Xavier hoped that this would show that his students were good kids and would help with his fight to have his students attend Bayville high when the summer was over.
So far things were looking good, there were a few outspoken voices against having mutants in schools but he needed to fight this. Mutants deserved to be treated like normal people and this was an important step. He was confident by this point that the school board would see his way and let them join. Looking at the calendar on his desk he could see that school would open next month. Soon his student would have to face high school as known mutants. He hoped that they were ready for this because in some ways this might be a tougher challenge than some of the problems they had faced over this summer.
In the living room several of them were watching the television, currently Lance was channel surfing until Kitty stopped him.
"Hey go back one!" She said as Lance shrugged and did do as it landed on the news about the fight in New York.
"What again?" Lance asked her.
"We continue the report on the amazing battle that took place in downtown Manhattan a few days ago." A reporter on the TV said as images started to appear. "Currently all criminals are being held in special facilities while they are being processed. Police are taking extreme precautions with the individuals that were arrested. So far the police say they are confident that these men can be kept in prison until trail date is set."
"But still the world is a buzz about a new hero that seems to have shown herself that night."
"Oh god," Rogue was sitting with Peter who was now slumped forward as she placed her hands over her face. For days this had been going on and the jokes hadn't stopped either she was tempted to take that costume and have Amara burn it.
"We still have no new news on this new hero," the reporter went on as images of Rogue in costume fighting from that night. "The Daily Bugle has dubbed her Ms. Marvel."
"Ah swear if ah ever find out who named meh that..." Rogue trailed off that was not exactly the name she would have picked if she was thinking of even picking on to begin with. She felt Peter rubbing her back trying to cheer her up but honestly it just wasn't doing it as the report went on.
"At least they're not saying anything against us," Lance shrugged. "Well on this channel at least."
Depending on the news source either the X-men were accomplices that got away or were seen as possible heroes. It sure helped that the criminals captured were shown to be only humans with either powers given to them or were using technology.
"Hey at least we're finally being shown as something other than trouble," Scott said watching it. He was back to wearing his old red glasses since they got back. Peter had offered to rebuild the watch to control his powers, but after thinking on it Scott had told him not to put a rush job on it. Scott felt that he might have gotten too lax with his ability to see in color again he had been caught off guard once and it had gotten Rogue kidnapped.
Beside he had lived like this for years he could do it for a bit longer. When Peter did get around to rebuilding a new watch, Scott planned to only use it from time to time. There were moments he wanted to see in color again and without worrying about blowing a hole through everything he looked at but he wouldn't rely on it again.
"Anyways I better get going," Scott turned to leave the room.
"Going somewhere?" Kitty asked him.
"Jean and I are meeting Paul and Taryn," he told her. "Gotta catch up on what's been going on." He didn't mention that later on he and Jean planned for a date with just themselves. It had been some time since they had the chance and he was hoping for no interruptions this time. He had caught Jean preparing her room and she only did that when she planned for, well mainly for them to stay there for the night and not leave until the morning.
Once again, he was thankful that the walls of the mansion were thicker since reconstruction to help keep it more durable.
"Oh crap I knew I forgot something," Bobby jumped up suddenly heading for the doorway. "I can't believe I spaced on the time."
"What's the rush?" Scott asked.
"I was supposed to meet Gwen in an hour, if I leave now I might make it on time." Bobby looked forward to seeing Gwen Stacy. She was cool and he admitted she was hot she was kind of like Tabitha only in a little more control and more philosophical. Honestly he was really liking this girl now if only he could cross that threshold from being a friend to maybe being the boyfriend.
Of course her dad being a cop well that was something he wasn't looking forward to. She had said that her father was cautious of mutants so that wouldn't do Bobby any good. So he was planning to put that off as long as possible, he wondered if he could go without meeting him at all? No, his luck wasn't that good.
"You've been seeing that girl a lot," Lance commented. "Something going on there?"
Kitty perked up at that, she was a sucker for romance of any kind and Bobby knew that look. Once she started asking questions she wouldn't stop. So Bobby had to think quickly and get out of here before he got even more behind on time.
"No, just good friends I mean she's new in town, doesn't hate mutants and that's in short supply." Bobby said before making for the door again. "And I don't want to piss her off making her wait so see you guys later."
They watched Bobby quickly leave, Kitty pouted slightly as she sat back into the seat with Lance. "There is something going on there I just know it."
"Please leave it alone," Lance begged her. "Let the guy work it out himself he doesn't need you butting into it."
"I don't but into anything."
"Yeah right," Rogue rolled her eyes. "Ya get into everythin'."
"Like I do not! I just...I just like romantic stuff okay?"
"Yeah those trashy love novels you read all tha time proves that," Rogue was glad she didn't share a room with the girl anymore. Kitty was her best friend and all but honestly she could just be a bit too 'girly' at times for the goth's taste.
"There's nothing wrong with my books or liking romance," Kitty muttered to herself not wanting to get into yet another argument over books. They had enough of those when they had been roommates with Rogue getting all those horror books. Kitty tried reading one of them once and had nightmares that night, she never picked one up again.
Lance grinned down and snacked his arm around her rubbing her shoulder in comfort as she leaned into him. He couldn't help the grin on his face, sometimes playing the 'sensitive boyfriend' had its perks as they all went back to trying to find something to watch on TV.
Wilson Fisk was staring out of his window of his office, as plans went this one hadn't gone off as well as most of his other ones. Things had started out really well too but just when success was achieved things went straight to hell. It was an important lesson and one he was not going to forget or let happen again. Still it wasn't a total loss.
They had the data from the experiment and they could rebuild although next time would be in a more secure area with better safety procedures in place. The men that he hired were keeping their mouths shut thankfully, he would get them out in time but he needed to let the heat die down. Plus he had to plan out what to do with them when he needed them again. So they might have to cool their heels in prison for a bit while he made plans.
At any rate the experiment no matter how it ended did show promise, Essex said that with time and materials he could recreate the device and claimed to have ideas on improvements. The machinery was easy but the special crystals used as a catalyst weren't easy to come by. His spy in Magneto's base said that Magneto was looking for more but so far hadn't found anything conclusive yet. Well he could always steal any that Magneto might acquire in the future.
As to the Hellfire Club things were slightly up in the air at the moment, the last he heard of them were that they were discussing the merits of the device. Although Fisk got the impression that the results of the increase in power had impressed them. Mostly likely they were making plans on improving security when they went with the plan and he had no doubt they would. Of course there would be the dance of power, them trying to gain total control maybe even pushing him out or aside. Well he knew that dance all too well and he would make sure they couldn't do this without him.
Once he gained membership into the Inner Circle a whole new realm of power and influence would have in his hands. His reach would stretch faster and further than he could accomplish in his entire life normally. But now there were other matters that needed to be taken into consideration.
He would need more of these special types, he was sure of it. The world was changing and he needed to change his game plan with it. More and more people with special abilities seem to be showing up so it was only logical to get some of his own. He was already searching for more unique people, looking at the paper on his desk he looked at the opened page. There was an article about a string of robberies where the electrical security had all been burnt out.
Although what the story hadn't figured out was that this was the fifth such thing that had happened, there was someone in New York with some kind of power, he already had men out looking for clues. If anyone so much as showed the slightest power no matter what he would make an offer. Whoever this person was, was obviously new to New York as even criminals that grew up here knew of the Kingpin and that he usually got a cut of the action.
Well if this person whoever they were, could do what he thought he could do, that could be forgiven for now. Looking back out the window he looked over the city, from up here it looked the same as always but he could feel the shift and change, a new future was showing it's face and he was a man that would ride this new current and control it. Let others fear and try to fight against what was coming, they would be broken and die like the fools they were.
"The future belongs to those with the vision to see it, the will to force it to bend to you and the power to control it," he mused to himself as he planned to do just that.
Rogue had been thinking long and hard for the past few days about something that had been on her mind. She had been training nearly non-stop to get a handle of her powers with the help of everyone else that is when Hank wasn't examining her. From what they could tell her DNA had been permanently altered, meaning she would be stuck like this. It was hard getting used to being so strong that she could crush solid objects with her bare hands.
She had finally gotten a handle of flying, thanks to Jean. Although the way they flew was different as Jean used her mind to lift and move herself around. For Rogue, it was a bit different as she had to think of where she wanted to go and 'feel' her way towards it. It was strange but at least now she didn't have to launch herself at her target.
It was because she was getting better at her powers that she was thinking that it was time to go see Xavier about something she wanted to talk to him about. She found him in his office as she knocked politely on his door.
"Professor can ah come in?" She asked.
"Of course what can I help you with?" Xavier asked her as he put away some paperwork that was used to help run the mansion. It took a lot to run this place and then there were the whole sublevels, jet fuel wasn't cheap and it had to be delivered in a way no one would notice even before their exposure. Then there were also spare parts for the Danger Room and the X-jet, both specialty items. Especially since the SR-71 Blackbird had stopped being produced and their own was heavily modified.
So he was eager at this point for a break he noticed Rogue looked a bit nervous and he could feel her mind racing with thoughts. He didn't look as he knew she would tell him in time so he remained patient with her and letting her do this at her own pace.
"Ah've been thinkin' about somethin' for awhile now," Rogue became. "Ever since my powers got upgraded Ah guess ya could say, well ah've had this idea but ah wanted ya to hear it first."
Xavier nodded his head motioning her to continue when he heard what she had to say it gave him much to think about and after she left he called up the other adults to talk about Rogue's idea.
-Later that night-
Peter was making some final adjustments to his Spider-Man suit on the roof of the mansion. He was looking forward to getting out there and seeing if there was trouble to be stopped. He needed something nice and simple to deal with after everything. Since things had calmed down he didn't have to worry about too much for the moment.
He got to the ledge of the roof when he heard a pair of feet land behind him. He turned and was surprised to see Rogue there back in that costume she wore in New York.
"Uh...okay I'll bite what's with the outfit Rogue?" Peter asked her.
"Ya better get used to callin' meh Ms. Marvel," Rogue told him. "Ah talked with the Professor and he agrees that given how everything has been goin', ya need someone to keep an eye on ya."
"What like a babysitter?" He asked her. "I thought the whole Sirens thing was enough."
He remember how Rogue was part of the girls that had gone off using their powers because it was the 'fun' thing to do. Yes they did a lot of good he wasn't denying that but they did it all for the wrong reasons and thing had gotten out of control when that freaky guy in the black costume showed up looking for them.
Rogue shifted slightly on her feet. "Look that was just for some fun and honestly not tha best idea."
Peter was glad she was agreeing with his earlier thoughts but listened as she went on.
"We were just out there for no other reason than for ourselves. This time ah got somethin' that ah want ta protect. Peter ya know how hard it is for some of us ta know you're out there alone with no backup, especially meh."
Peter was silent a moment at that, he knew that his Aunt was also one of the bigger worriers and honestly he knew they all did worry about him. He couldn't stop being Spider-Man though it was just something he had to do, something that he wanted to do because it was a large part of him. When he had lost his powers for a time he started to realize this and now he wanted to use these powers to help others more than ever. Not just because he had a responsibility to help others with his powers but because this was what he wanted to do to.
Looking at Rogue he figured that she might not take 'no' for an answer and this wasn't like the Siren thing. He could see how serious she was taking all of this and if she went to Xavier and he agreed than Xavier must have thought this through. He also knew that Rogue could be really stubborn when she wanted to be and honestly if he took off she could just fly and catch him or just follow him.
"So you really want to do this?" Peter did admit it would be nice having someone with him and Rogue's new powers were impressive but he wanted to make sure it was for the right reasons, he had to be sure.
"Aren't ya the one that always says with great power comes great responsibility?" Rogue countered him. "Look ah'm doin' this, the Prof said ah could and you know that ah'll just follow you."
Oh yeah she sure could be stubborn at times and this was defiantly one of them alright. "So you're okay with this whole Ms Marvel thing?"
"Not really, wish ah could have chosen a name," She muttered about maybe another costume as well but at this point she really had nothing else. She wanted to be out there with Peter to help and maybe not just to keep Peter safe but this could be something she could also share with him. He always was alone out here but she didn't want him to be alone anymore.
Anyways she didn't have time to get new costume or think of a new name. She seemed to be stuck with it so she might as well go with it.
"Well if we are going to do this you'll have to listen to me at first you know," Peter really wanted to make sure nothing happened because she wasn't used to going out and doing the hero thing like he was. He had a lot more experience with crime fighting and wanted her to know that until she was ready he was calling the shots.
She nodded, she could live with that.
"Good, well then I got my first sidekick."
"Sidekick?" Rogue sounded slightly offended by that. "Ah was thinkin' partners."
"Nope part of the superhero handbook," he explained. "Start out as a sidekick before being promoted to partner."
"Oh yeah?" She reached and grabbed him as she quickly took off into the air with both of them as they flew towards the city. "Ya want to say that again?"
Although he knew she wouldn't drop him, at least not without making sure he would swing away safely, he got the point. "Okay no sidekick."
"Good," She smiled at him as they flew on.
Peter had to admit he could get used to this, not only would it save him on web fluid but it did also give them the perfect excuse to be this close. Maybe having a girlfriend that could fly and being his partner in crime fighting might come in handy after all.
"How about Junior Hero?" He asked her. "Hero-in training, oh I know junior partner like in a law firm."
"Ya want meh to drop ya or not?"
"No ma'am...how about Super Friend?"
"Ya are nevah seein' meh naked again."
"Oh come on! That's too harsh, can't you just drop me instead? Although I got to admit that custom doesn't really hide much of anything."
"Peter!" Rogue blushed all over her pale face. She really didn't like how much skin this custom showed off. She had never been comfortable with her body and showing it off wasn't something she was used to. Hell even before her powers kicked in she was fully clothed all the time and there was a reason why she was a goth after all.
"What? I'm your boyfriend and we've seen each other naked before. I mean you got nice legs which are being showed off."
"Not to mention it really shows off your ass, a very good one I might add."
"Please stop it," Her whole face was heating up. "I swear if ya don't stop it's the last time ya will see mah ass or any other part of meh ever again."
"Okay okay...you're cute when your blushing you know that?"
"That's it!" She dropped him thankfully they were over the buildings as he managed to fire a webline and swung ahead of her.
"Well how about a race then? First one to the mall gets a prize from the loser?" He called out to her swinging ahead.
Rogue only smirked, "Ya are on there." She sped off in flight quickly catching up with him. Because she could fly she had the advantage of being able to go in a straight line unlike Peter who had to swing. She was already planning what to get from him when she won the race a smile slowly growing on her face.
Flying out here in the night air with Peter by her side for some reason it just felt right to her. Like they were meant to be here together in this moment, she never was one for fate or destiny or any of that kind of stuff but in this one moment she might be able to start to think otherwise.
That night many people witnessed two superheroes fighting crime and it wouldn't be the last time either. That night a new super hero team was born as Spider-Man and Ms Marvel went into the night to fight crime together, partners in life in the X-Men, in love together as a couple and now partners in crime fighting.
Little did they know that off far away Madam Web was watching all of this as the web of life was shifting slightly as she watched the changes that were appearing before her blind eyes. The web always changed, with each and everything little change the pattern too on a different shape but in the end everything had a part to play.
"Enjoy your time together you two," Madam Web said to herself. "This is only the beginning of a new chapter for not only you but everyone else. I hope you all the best for what's to come next."
Well I hope you've enjoyed this story maybe someday I'll make another one at least I hope to as I still have things to write about but there are other stories I want to do as well that I hope you can enjoy as well. I wanted to make it a little longer but honestly I couldn't really think of much else anything else would just be me rambling on.