Chapter 3

Three is up! And FYI readers, in case ya ain't a Vic/Birdy fan, and to avoid beating you over the head with historical details, let me just say this. Birdy was Vic's sidekick, she got mad and betrayed him to his worthless son Graydon, who then stabbed her for her troubles. Vic moved on and never looked back. So says Marvel. This is my version.

"So why'd ya come back for 'im?"

The question was out of the blue, and personal, considering the hostile nature of their relationship. Birdy sat up from the 'cobra' position her lean body was in, her arms folded across her knees.

"Uh HELLO."...she chuckled. "You pulled that one out of your ass didn't you ?" She wiped the sweat from her temple with her hand.

Logan watched her from a bench in the gym. The other gym. Away from the Danger Room. He wore grey sweatpants, but no shirt. His chest gleamed from the sweat of the vigorous work-out he had just enjoyed, but he didn't bother with even a cursory wipe. Even across the room on another mat, while pushing himself hard, he had watched her. Well why the hell not? he thought. She was a looker. What was it about mutant females? If their mutation wasn't some weird physical thing, all the mutant women tended to be exceptional. This Birdy was right with the best of 'em. He watched her watching him, a slight smile playing on her lips.

Honey blond hair pulled back, a few errant strands caressing her cheeks. Blue eyes you could see across a room full of Playboy centerfolds. The short tank showed the girl had all the softness she needed, despite her Yoga lean body. What was that position she was in before, he wondered. Barking Dog? Showed a nice ass, whatever it was.

"Why'd ya come back for Creed?" He repeated. "You were "free" he added, sarcasm punctuating the last word.

Birdy's smile faded.

'I don't know." she replied honestly. " I didn't want him.....I didn't think he deserved to be ...caged." She hugged her arms around her. "You could understand that, couldn't you?" she said, pressing a primal button.

Logan ignored the false empathy. This girl may have used the last month to con all the other mansion residents, but he wasn't fallin' for it. He snorted at the thought of his gullible teammates. Was it her pretty face? The self-deprecating humor? The way she had of talkin' to a person..listening to a person like they were the only chump on the planet? Jubes was crazy for her, and that rang alarm bells in him big time.

"Watcha got against her Wolvie? At least she's fun."

Logan smiled at the memory of the teen's simple conclusion.

"This from a kid who thinks tattoos oughta be shown in the town art museum."

Jubes had made a face and punched his shoulder.

"I like her."

Logan had turned serious then.

'Kid....listen to me. The old saying about "Judging people by the company they keep" Be careful of her. Somethin' ain't right with a girl that would hook up with Creed."

Jubilee had furrowed her brow.

'What about the fake-boobed floosy you were with last month? The one I saw you in town with? She was all over you like a cheap suit one day, and the next she was slashing your tires."...

Logan had argued how that was different. But Jubes was unconvinced. He smiled slightly at the thought of the stubborn kid.

"She's a nice girl" Birdy confirmed.

"Stay outta my head." Logan barked back.

"Sor-reeee", the telepath exclaimed, raising her hands. " It didn't take much effort. You're kinda easy to read. You should practice being more discreet."

Logan growled softly. He was NOT easy to read. Or indiscreet. But this girl seemed to enjoy baiting him.

'Why would you wanna help Creed" he asked again. "He had his claws in ya that deep?"

Birdy laughed softly. She shrugged and spoke softly.

"Maybe it was a sense of..loyalty?"

Logan almost laughed out loud. Instead, he leaned forward, speaking softly.

"So you and 'ol Vic had that with each other didja?"

Birdy stiffened slightly.

"Was his sense of loyalty operatin' when he stepped over your "corpse" on his way here to get a fix?"

Birdy's eyes narrowed, and Logan saw anger flash quickly over her. But something else...hurt?

"Ya know" he continued, 'He hasn't mentioned ya once. Not once since he's been here."

Logan was known for his bererker temper. He had been called vicious, feral, vindictive, stubborn. But he would never had been accused of being deliberately cruel. Until now.

He continued his hard look at the girl, until she finally turned away. She sighed softly, and for a moment he saw a fragile look cross her face. She turned her blue eyes to him again.

This was a different look. A sly smile curled at her mouths edge. She rose up to her knees and gracefully raised her hands, running her fingers through her hair. The hairband fell, and silky, blond tresses tumbled to her shoulders. She shook her head, enjoying the feeling of being unbound.

Birdy moved on her knees towards him as a supplicant would. Logan didn't flinch, didn't take his eyes from her.

She was between his spread thighs now, inches from his muscled chest. She touched his throat and traced a serpentine line down through the dense hair, enjoying the feel of the contracting, hard flesh under her fingers. She paused at his belly, hooking her fingers under the waistband of his sweats.

"Ya know what I think?" she whispered. Logan swallowed audibly.

"I think you may like me just a little. Explains why you're being such a prick."

"Don't flatter yourself" he growled.

Birdy laughed softly.

"Oh I don't. I just have a six sense ya know? And even if it's not me.."

She leaned into him, blowing softly against his jaw as she murmured in his ear.

"You're dying to know what Vic sees in me. You're dying to have what HE'S had."

Logan's arms were suddenly around her. His hands wove through her hair, pulling her face to his. Their mouths were close enough to share the heat of their ragged breathing.

His look was pure lust. Birdy marveled at the dangerous, virile, familiar man before her. Logan roughly tugged her head back. His mouth caressed her throat, a barely there touch that made her shudder. He whispered to her.

"Vic'd be proud of 'ya. Your "devotion" lasted for almost a month."

Birdy pushed away from him just as he released her. The exaggerated movement sent her flying back on her rear. She looked surprised for a moment. Then stood quickly, her flushed face an angry glare. Logan smiled.

"Better shower" he said as he reached for the folded towels on the bench next to him.

'Workout's over."

The second he turned his head he knew it was too late. Birdy's tense sideways stance pirouetted in a flash. One hundred twenty- seven pounds of Yoga trained discipline focused into the heel of her foot.

Straight into his solar plexus.

The feral mutant and the heavy bench crashed back onto the wood floor.

Logan rose up on his powerful arms. Birdy did not run. She was furious, ready to fight, even knowing that he would be dealing all the hurt from here on out. Her voice was tremulous, angry.

"You don't know DICK about me, OR what I care about!"

Logan watched her, thrilled by her intensity. And began to laugh.

"Ya owed me that one Birdy....Let's call a truce..for today."

Birdy stayed on the balls of her feet, her hands in loose fists for several seconds. Waiting...watching. She finally settled and relaxed into a comfortable stance. She closed her eyes and took a cleansing breath.

Logan watched her, raising his eyebrow in amusement. Birdy looked at him and smiled. She picked up a towel from the floor, careful to keep a safe distance. Her genial expression returned.

"I'm going to take my shower...feel free to watch. And after that..I'm going to eat something. I'm ravenous!" She licked her lower lip. "I feel like hot and spicy. Got any Cajun in the house?"

She turned and walked towards the showers without a glance back.

Logan dropped his head to his chest, chuckling at the crazy girl. Before this was all over, he decided, he would have some fun with this one.

Whether she liked it or not.