Hello everyone,

After two years of religiously feeding on X-men fanfiction, here is the first chapter of one of my own. I never really realized how HARD it was to write fanfiction, especially coming from a pretty different culture and trying to tap into another culture (writing dialogue was a bitch, it was such a struggle to refrain from using non American/Standard English expressions). But I tried, so here it is:

Title: Rules of Engagement

Authoress: Romyantic87

Rating: T/M (at some parts, maybe)

Universe: X-men (AU comics, although I did borrow Risty who belongs to Evolution)

Disclaimer: I own absolutely nothing. Marvel owns it all. I only wish I was half as brilliant and imaginative as Stan Lee

***

The silence of the cold night was broken by the click-clacking sound of two pairs of stiletto heels hitting the pavement on a street somewhere in South Western Chicago. The two stilettos belonged to two young women making their way hurriedly to some destination mostly in an effort to escape the windy Chicago streets, but also because they were on their way to an engagement.

"Sh*t Rogue we're gonna be late" exclaimed the black and purple haired owner of one of the stiletto pairs. Like her noisy shoes, her South London accent stood out, in the silence of the now calm Chicago scene.

Her companion rolled her emerald green eyes before stating in her equally misplaced southern accent, "Calm down Risty, it's just rahght around tha corner. Besides these thing never start on tahme, what's a few minutes"

"It's a quarter to midnight Rogue. This thing was supposed to start at 10!"

"Okay, okay so we are a little late. But who was it that couldn't decide between tha black long sleeved mini Gucci dress with embroidered palliates and tha grey long sleeved mini Gucci dress with embroidered palliates"

"Excuse me? Is that some soddy attempt to mock my obviously superior appreciation of the intricacies fashion innate to my London heritage?"

"Okay one…Gucci is Italian and two, Ah picked out the grey dress first from Macy's and you said ya just hadda get tha same one but in pink ta match tha colour of ya hair then. But then because yah didn't fahnd tha pink yah bought tha grey. And rahght now ya wearing mah black dress which, let meh reiterate, Ah bought first."

"Whatever, darling. We all know that it was only on account of my absolute fabulous taste rubbing off of you, love" she retorted with a dismissive wave of her wrist, "And a bit of my bitchiness too it would seem."

"Ya wish sugah, but ya'll have ta save ya delirious ramblings for when we meet up with tha others and ya got a lil' alcohol in ya system to get away with crazy talk lahke that, 'cause we're here. "

Their destination turned out to be a small bar tucked away in the street's corner, but on this night this same bar, which usually hummed with only a few customers on the weekend, was now teeming with life this Saturday evening.

"Bugger, it's freezing out here! I need some warmth" said Risty, huddling close to her friend, hoping to cipher some of her body heat. A gesture Rogue did not appreciate.

"Geeze, ya hands are cold Risty!"

"It's not my fault I was born premature! And we all know that children who are born premature get cold hands. "

"Ah don't have enough knowledge t' dispute yah on th' fact, but now Ah'm cold!" Rogue complained, "Can we go insahde please, mah guests are waitin'!"

Compared to the cold silence of the street outside, the noisy and warm ambiance of the bar proved a more comfortable alternative; and for Risty, who only a week ago had been spending her Saturdays in many a pub on the streets of Northwest London. She'd only been in Chicago—in the United States really—for a short while and with the help of her friend Rogue was gradually getting acquainted with the Chicago scene before she had to return home a short few weeks later. Moving through the crowd, Risty followed Rogue as she made her way to the back of the crowd, where she guessed Rogue's party members would most likely be waiting to greet them.

"Possum! Possum!"

A male voice yelled the word repeatedly through the crowd. Risty followed the direction of the yell. The source appeared to be a white-haired man who was pushing his way past groups of conversing men and women to make his way towards. At a closer look, Risty could see that he had intensely grey almost silver eyes that sparkled even in the dim light of the bar, creating what Risty found to be a hypnotic effect; coupled with the straight toothed smile which revealed adorable dimples. She knew she was staring but she couldn't help herself. Having a brief affair with an American man was on her 'to do' list for her short holiday. To her delight, he stopped right before them.

"Yoa're late sis, how're y' goin' be late fuh y' own damn party."

"First of all, oh so dear brother a' mine how many tahmes have Ah asked ya not ta call meh Possum? Ah think Ah've been making that request fo' about twenty years now."

"Aww mah lil' Possum" He responded, enveloping his sister in an exaggerated bear hug. Risty watched with increased intrigue; If this really was Rogue's brother, her chances of the attractive man being a candidate for her American affair were increased.

Struggling against his strength, Rogue freed from the suffocating grasp to glare at him, "And secondly, this is mah party so Ah can do anythin' Ah want."

"Yeah, 'cept come early." He chuckled at his own joke, "And look, y' brought a friend. Hah"

He smiled brightly at Risty before grabbing her hand to shake it. She wasted no time in taking his hand, putting on her best come-hither expression, "Hello to you too, I'm Risty."

"And Ah'm CJ. Rogue's brother, but Ah'm sure ya already knew that" he added smugly with a wink "and Ah'm sure she let yah know how smart, charming and incredibly handsome Ah am"

"Cheesy too," Rogue cut in sarcastically making Risty laugh.

"I don't think it's cheesy Rogue. I think it's rather cute" her voice had taken on a rather provocative tone, "charming, really"

Just then, the loud sound of a cellphone ringing, cut through the noise of the bar, disrupting their conversation. CJ reacted almost immediately, frantically digging into his pocket and retrieving the device his phone.

Without looking at the screen he answered, "Hang on" and then placed his hand on the mouthpiece momentarily, to address them "If y'all will excuse meh ladies, I need ta take this. Rogue, yo' guests are waiting, and hopefully, none a' them dead from boredom yet. Risty it was nice meetin' ya. Ah'll see y'all later."

And with that, he moved passed them and disappeared towards the direction they had come, probably to head outside for some privacy. Meanwhile Risty, incredibly crestfallen turned to Rogue.

"Rogue, I want him."

"Sorry sugah." She didn't sound sorry though "But ya can't have him"

"Why not!?"

"Because" she answered adding a dramatic a sigh "some unfortunate gal already got stuck with that loser"

Risty pouted like a petulant child, "Luck bird."

"Fo'get him Risty," she hooked her arm through her friend's as they continued to move towards the back corner of the club where she the guests her brother had invited were waiting. From her distance, she could tell that half of them already tipsy and a quarter of them were probably too drunk to even remember why they were there. She turned her attention back to her friend, "There are many fish in the sea Risty. A number of them at mah lil' get together rahght here!"

"It's a bloody shame though. Your brother is pretty fit."

"He's hella annoyin' though."

"Whatever, Rogue," came the flippant reply, "You're only saying that because he's your broth—"

The chatty Brit suddenly found herself speechless, her eyes focused on another figure. He hadn't caught site of them yet although he was moving in their direction. He was far too busy greeting the other people around him—most of them women,—carrying himself with such polished grace, she couldn't help but stop to watch him. In contrast to CJ, his features were darker; dark auburn hair, a few strands of which slipped into his dark eyes half hidden behind lowered dark lashes. By this time, he was an arm's length away and inevitably, their gazes met but she made no effort to hide her brazen interest; interest in not only how strong his facial features were but also the interesting colour of his eyes, unusual red irises imbedded in the dark black pools of his corneas. This had to be the other fish Rogue had been talking about and she wasn't about to let this one get away. But before Risty could even release the breath she had been holding, Rogue spoke.

"Remy."

Her tone was as cold as the street outside.

"Rogue" the tone of his response was almost as cool but now he was staring at Rogue. She was visibly avoiding his gaze but he seemed unperturbed, "CJ?"

In the same way, the mood when meeting CJ—which had been had been light and giddy—was in complete contrast to the one that swallowed them now. The atmosphere was now charged with palpable tension, a change that confused Risty.

"He… He's somewhere over there." Rogue spoke again and pointed behind her, but this time she was looking up at him, exacerbating the tension. "Outside, Ah think."

Risty innocently caught up whatever vendetta existed between the two was now even more confused. It was surprising her to see this Remy character who obviously raised the temperature of whatever—not to mention whomever—atmosphere he inhabited, elicit this reaction from a girl as tough skinned as Rogue. It made him all the more appealing, piquing her intrigue. But before she had a chance to entice him into a conversation, he shoved his hands into his pockets and shuffled his feet, ready to leave.

"Merci," he said simply, smirking this time, and tipped his head at both of them before politely making his way past them. Risty, her gaze still fixated on him, watched him disappear into the small crowd behind them and possibly in the same direction as her brother.

"Somebody please get me some ice! Bloody hell Rogue! Who the f*ck was that?"

"That's just Remy." Rogue replied offhandedly, "He's a close friend o' mah brotha's. He's—"

"Fit! A hot bloody f*cking lad, that's what he is!" she yelled, charged up on the pre-existing tension from the entire encounter. She turned to Rogue, her voice suddenly low, "Tell me you have shagged that guy. Tell me that was sexual tension because I certainly felt tense…and sexual."

Rogue only scrunched her face in disgust, "Yoah're kiddin' raght?"

"Maybe, but I'm not hearing a no, sweetheart"

The southern girl crossed her arms and glared, "No."

"Good. Could I shag him then?"

Rogue rolled her eyes, "Ya a grown woman Risty, ya don't need anyone's permission. Ya can shag whomever tha hell ya want. Now can we finally just enjoy tha party"


It was close to three am when Rogue slipped the small key into the lock of her apartment door. The emptiness was a welcomed greeting after the crowded bar. And the silence was a relief from the drunken laughter and chatter of the people enjoying the nightlife of downtown South Western Chicago, particularly Risty. As the night progressed, Rogue had lost her companion in the crowd, but wasn't surprised to find her later, cornered with none other than Remy LeBeau, but that had been thirty minutes ago. Rogue scuffed at the memory. And certain that her friend was guaranteed a ride—in both senses of the word—Rogue was more than happy to leave. The reactions of near wonderment and instant infatuation were sickeningly common with many females unfortunate enough to come into contact with the man. And for a woman like Risty who had a passionate fondness for the male species, Rogue knew her reaction would be nothing short of theatrical.

Her bedroom was dark when she opened the door, but she didn't bother to turn on the light. A move she regretted when a sudden deep chuckle emanated from behind her. She turned around struggling to find the source of the laughter in the darkness. But as her eyes began to adjust to the darkness she was able to make out what seemed a familiar figure, shrouded in the shadows sitting at the edge of the bed. Quickly, she reached for the light switch. In the light she could see that the intruder carried two glasses in one hand a wine bottle in the other.

"Hi…"


A/N Whew! That was tough to write, hopefully the rest will be easier