"I told myself I won't miss you"
Hinder – Better than me
Logan finds him again like Remy predicted he would. Despite Logan's 'I'll find my own way' he knew that Logan wanted answers and as far as Logan knew Remy was the only one who could provide those.
Remy isn't bothered by Logan's presence in his life; he likes Logan more than he cares to admit otherwise he wouldn't have come back, which is the problem. Remy won't let himself be tied down by anyone. He doesn't want a partner; he doesn't want to get attached. It's never worth it anyway.
Logan on the other hand seems to have no such problems, which leads to an ugly fight six months after Logan found him again and ends with Logan leaving.
'Did you miss me?' Was the first thing he asked Logan after rescuing him on that island but before Logan lost his memory. He never got an answer.
Remy pretends not to be bothered by Logan's absence and continues with his life as if Logan has never been part of it.
They turn up in the bar where he plays poker this evening not long after Logan has left. Remy notices them as soon as they come through the door as does anyone else. He can't decide who of them draws more attention. The man has an air of natural authority around him, someone with charisma who is respected by people who have only met him.
The woman is a mutant, blue skin, yellow eyes and short red hair. As if that was not enough she walks around naked even though that only seems secondary in the face of the aforementioned features of her appearance.
The man sits down on the other side of the table, the woman stands behind him.
'I've heard about you Remy LeBeau.'
'Lots of people have.' Remy replies nonchalant.
'I could use a man with your talents.'
'Sorry, I only play for myself.'
'I meant your other talents, Gambit.' If he hadn't seen the destruction of Stryker's hell with his own eyes he would have already attacked the man in front of him as he did with Logan, but this time he remains calm.
'Not many people around here know that name.'
'I know someone who does.' Remy's heart unwillingly beats faster. Maybe this man knows where Logan is…
'Charles and I are old friends.' Xavier, of course.
'You'll excuse me but I have to decline. I'm not a mercenary.'
'I would not be here if you were.' He stands up.
'If I change my mind, what's your name?'
"Let's pretend that we don't have a past, the worst one"
The Hush Sound – Hourglass
He's had a few shitty weeks when he visits Xavier's mansion for the first time. Xavier has told him before that Remy could come by any time he wanted to or needed help.
'It's just for a few days.' He tells Xavier and the man gives him a room and a bed.
Remy recognizes some of the kids around him from Stryker's and one or two recognize him, too. Among them Emma, which earns him a dirty look from her boyfriend, a lanky kid with red glasses that introduces himself as 'Scott'.
Watching them is like waiting for the inevitable train wreck. Remy's not much older than them but he's seen things like this a thousand times and it always, always ends badly.
"You wanna break me, bit by bit
That's just part of it"
Apocalyptica – I don't care
Logan and Magneto are not the only ones who find him in New Orleans. Creed's re-introduction into Remy' life after two years of absence goes like this: he grabs Remy from behind, presses him against a wall but keeps his hands up so that Remy can't charge anything.
'Victor's missed you, boy.' Creed whispers with the same disgusting breath as ever against Remy's neck.
'What do you want, Creed?' Remy goes for an annoyed voice. He's kicked Creed's ass before and he can do it again.
'Heard you're after my brother.' Creed's grip on his wrists won't ease no matter how much Remy tried to free his hands.
'I don't what you're talking about.' There's no fucking way he's done anything to anyone named 'Creed'.
'Right, I believe you know him as 'Logan'.' Creed laughs when he can feel Remy go slightly limp in his grip.
'You're lying.' Remy spits out.
'Am I?' It's rhetorical question. Creed's tone has a nearly conversational tone: 'Attractive guy with metal claws coming out of his hands, remembers nothing but his name. I know you know him, after all he's lived with you for six months.'
'What do you want?' Remy repeats. It's not like Creed to come by and gloat. If he's here then he wants something. Remy can guess what it is that Creed wants: the same thing he wanted in Stryker's hell. The question is what he'll offer to get it now that Remy isn't dependant on his mercy.
'What's in for me?' This better has to be good.
'I'll leave my brother alone.' Remy curses at him in a long string of French that does nothing but to amuse Creed. Creed is a monster and Remy doesn't want to imagine what he could do to Logan, who is vulnerable in his search for answers, especially if Creed can prove their relation.
He agrees to the deal like Creed knew he would and Creed fucks him right there in the ally. It fuels his arousal that he knows that Remy hates him, is disgusted and repulsed by him and yet he's here willingly and all because of a few threats to his brother that are empty, which Remy can't and doesn't know.
The train wreck for Emma and Scott happens while he's in the mansion the next time. It's been four years and six months since Logan left him, although he's not counting but by now he usually hears it when something happens mutant-related and no one has so much as breathed Logan's name in all this time. Remy suspects he left the country. Creed probably knows but Creed only talks about Logan when he fucks Remy and it's never anything that could reveal where Logan is.
This time there's a new girl in the mansion; a beautiful, smart redhead named Jean. She's too young to interest Remy, but Logan would like her, he thinks, and then stops because he avoids thinking of Logan in general and as a rule when he's in the mansion. He doesn't trust Xavier enough not to be suspicious that the man looks in his head sometimes.
Also, thinking of Logan would mean that he acknowledges that he misses Logan's company, which he does sometimes, and Remy doesn't miss people. It's not his business who walks in and out of his life. It's not worth it either.
'Why don't you look for him if you miss him?' Jean stands not too far from him. Her clothes are too serious for a 16-year-old, even for a genius one.
'You're a telepath then.' He mutters and gives her a smirk. Jean shakes her head and says: 'Sometimes I can't help it but pick other people's thoughts up.'
'You tell that to every boy?' He almost accidentally gestures in the direction of Emma and Scott who seem to be arguing next to the fountain. Jean frowns: 'She's not very nice to him.'
She was imprisoned, tortured and experimented on by a man that makes whatever galactic invasion the Fantastic Four are battling this week look like a comic book villain, Remy thinks bitterly, that tends not to make people nice and easy-going.
Scott leaves Emma the next day and goes out with Jean. More out of spite than anything else Emma sleeps with Remy and makes it known to Scott. Remy sleeps with her because the whole setting of the mansion makes him feel like a teenager keen on rebellion. He has never liked her during their imprisonment at Stryker's, a girl who likes to point out that her sister is out there fighting for her tends to get on the nerves of others who have no one wasting as much as a second thought on their whereabouts, but it's nice having someone who knows what he has gone through and is not Creed.
He leaves the next day in the early morning to avoid Xavier at breakfast.
He meets Ororo when Jean visits him while the X-Men battle some foe in Louisiana. Remy has seen a lot of beautiful people in his life, both men and women but in his opinion Ororo is the most beautiful creature he has ever seen.
Different to Jean she reacts to his charms and makes clear that she's interested. It's the start of a casual affair they pick up every time she's in New Orleans or he's in the mansion. Ororo is everything a man can wish for but he doesn't think about her when she isn't around him, he never misses her. She's unique and special among the girls who flutter around him but she's not Logan.
Then, one day, she comes into the city when Creed's just leaving. She recognizes him as one of the men who came into her village looking for the star that fell from the sky. That night Ororo tells him about her childhood monster named Stryker and the hero with the metal claws who saved her uncle's life.
Remy decides then and there that the whole world has set up a conspiracy to remind him of Logan at every opportunity.
They stop sleeping with each other not long after that night when Ororo falls in love with a guy in New York, but their relationship stays and grows tighter until Remy begins to think of her as his sister rather than a desirable woman. She becomes his first best friend ever and it's great to have her.
Another forceful reminder of his past comes nearly exactly on the 11th anniversary of his escape from Stryker's hell, who as far as Remy knows, is still alive and busy making life harder for mutants.
He has a date with a woman named Yuriko when suddenly the branch of the military that deals with mutant terrorists surrounds the building. Yuriko's surprise is not acted well enough to fool him and when her fingernails extend into long metal claws he knows for sure that Stryker has neither forgotten nor forgiven him.
His escape causes massive destruction and not a few deaths but Remy couldn't care less. Still, he thinks it may be not a good idea to show his face at the mansion when he has just killed four men.
In retro perspective, seeking refuge with Magneto and his Brotherhood was the wrong idea. Not so much Magneto and the things Remy does for him: destroying a few buildings and charming them a way into secret facilities, but more that Creed is a member of said Brotherhood.
Fortunately Magneto likes to keep Creed at his side and sends Remy of with Mystique, the same woman that had already accompanied Magneto when he made his first proposition to Remy.
Mystique, Remy observes, likes to tease men, both in her natural and in her shapeshifted form, which leads to a sexual harassment suit for anti-mutant Senator Watson when Mystique aggressively propositions one of the cleaning staff while in his form, but she never once goes through with it. Actually she reminds him a lot of Ororo if Ororo had the mischievousness of a schoolboy.
"I remember we were driving driving in your car
The speed so fast I felt like I was drunk
City lights lay out before us
And your arm felt nice wrapped 'round my shoulder
And I had a feeling that I belonged"
Tracy Chapman – Fast Car
He leaves the Brotherhood when Magneto makes clear to him that he can't keep Creed from him 24/7 and that it would be better for Remy to leave.
It's still too early and too unsafe to return to New Orleans so he does in the end go to Xavier. This time however the mansion is overrun with students and Remy has a roommate: a two meter guy with the body of an Olympic athlete who goes by the name of Piotr Rasputin. Piotr doesn't talk much or at all if not directly asked a question but he draws humorous pictures that make Remy crack a grin every time.
Piotr is gentle and sweet, polite, can cook and is generally the stuff fairytale princes are made of. He's loving and careful with Remy as if Remy is made of glass. He creates the sweet, sweet illusion that this could last, that Remy could stay in the mansion, with Piotr, being loved and cared for while fighting for freedom and justice.
It's an illusion so easy to believe that it hurts.
'I'm leaving tomorrow.' Remy tells the ceiling, which is as silent as Piotr next to him. He turns his head sideways:
'Please tell me that I didn't break your heart.'
Piotr reaches over and cups Remy's face with his hand. His expression is serene and his voice calm when he answers:
'No, you didn't' which is the saddest part of all.
"No remorse and no shame"
Jekyll & Hyde - Dangerous Game
Back in New Orleans he forgets all about Piotr when Ororo isn't mentioning him and she mentions him often since she hopes it will make him come back.
It's been thirteen years since he has last seen Logan and by now he sincerely begins to doubt that even Creed knows where he is but he still keeps his end of the bargain. Creed comes over more rarely and Remy believes that he owes Magneto this favour.
This scrawny kid is not even five foot tall with a mop of unruly brown hair and black eyes smothering with rage.
Remy has seen him a few times around; a runaway, a whore, nothing he hasn't seen before. However it's the first time Remy has seen a man burn to an ash heap in the course of mere seconds.
Remy whistles: 'Impressive, kid.'
The kid immediately whirls to him, stance ready to fight like a feral and flames playing around his fingertips.
'Relax kid.' Remy charges one of his cards and throws it into a wall: 'I'm one of you.'
'Who are you?' The kid demands.
'They call me Remy LeBeau. What's your name?'
It's as they say in the movies the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Only it's not beautiful and it's not a friendship. In truth it's hard to define what it is.
Remy would almost say that Pyro is like his little brother but that would mean he supports incest. Maybe saying that looking at Pyro is like looking in the mirror is better even if it makes sleeping with him look a bit narcissistic.
Pyro's back is a mess of scars and however old that kid is, he's seen a lot. Even Creed gets nothing more than disdainful snort when he makes Remy suck Pyro off while he fucks Remy. Pyro never once gives even the impression that he wants to know why Remy lets Creed do all that when he obviously hates him.
One night Remy asks him: 'So, you like it here?'
'You want to hear the truth?' Pyro grins.
'No.' Remy's not interested in truths, in his opinion truths don't exist. There are just opinions.
'I don't want you. I don't find you sexy. You're not committing statutory rape by fucking me.' Pyro begins with the obvious ones: 'I love you. I never lie to you. I'll never go.'
Pyro's gone the next day without leaving a single trace in Remy's life.
She's a waitress, young with long dark hair and fearful brown eyes. Her nametag says Marie and she wears long gloves that reach up to her elbows, which only heightens the air of tragic and melancholy around her.
Remy sees her just once: some jerk can't take a 'no' for a no and grabs her, suddenly he collapses and she hightails out of the bar.
Remy goes to the mansion after the incident on Ellis Island. Mostly because the mutant grapevine tells him that a) Creed is dead and b) Logan is with Xavier.
He isn't but Remy meets some familiar faces and two that he didn't expect. The first one is Marie the waitress or Rogue as she calls herself now.
'Why are you wearing Logan's dogtags?' Is the first thing he says to her. The dogtags, Logan's most prized possession, the only link to his past.
'He gave them to me.' The Logan Remy remembers would have never taken them off, let alone given them to another person. Remy can't help but feel betrayed.
They end up sharing stories about Logan anyway.
The Logan Rogue describes is not so different from the Logan Remy remembers after all and like Remy predicted Logan likes Jean much to Rogue's dismay and to Scott's, too.
The other familiar face he didn't expect to see is Pyro, whose real name is apparently John.
From what he gathers during his few days in the mansion Remy has just officially become part of the biggest mutant soap opera on the planet: Scott and Jean are still a couple but Logan's attracted to Jean, while Rogue and Remy, who can after fifteen years more or less admit it to himself, are in love with Logan. Rogue in the meanwhile dates a boy named Bobby Drake who is loved by Pyro who sleeps with Remy and with Bobby because he hopes it will make Bobby love him back.
If it was any less elaborate it wouldn't be true.
Remy leaves again without having seen Logan despite Rogue's assurances that he's going to come back.
Remy's not waiting for anyone.
Pain sears through him, sharp and white. One heartbeat, two and suddenly it's gone and replaced by everyone around him screaming and writhing.
A few days later they announce Stryker's backfired plan to annihilate mutantkind and his subsequent death in the news. Remy gets himself drunk and very nearly calls the mansion to see if he can reach Logan.
Ororo does call him to tell him that Jean has died and that Pyro has defected to Magneto's side, but Remy doesn't come to the mansion. He's not good with funerals and still too happy about Stryker's demise.
When Remy finally sees Logan again it's after a lot of things have happened: it's after Xavier, Scott and Jean or whatever she has become are dead, after Magneto, Mystique and Rogue have been cured and it's after Pyro has been declared missing.
'Remy.' Logan says.
'Logan.' Remy answers and there are these questions he could ask. Where were you, why did you let go, why didn't you come back, what would it take, but Remy swallows them down. Logan might answer and lie or he might say the truth. Remy's not sure he could bear either so instead he throws him a grin and asks: 'Did you miss me?'