Chapter One: Social Rejection Prevention
All Standard Disclaimers Apply
Spoilers: Post X-3: The Last Stand, non cure ending, not Origins compatible.
Summary: In order to prevent Rogue from doing something socially unacceptable, Logan sends her away from the mansion (and her cheating boyfriend) to recruit one certain Cajun. This may or may not be a good idea.
Author's Note: A big Thank You to my beta reader, Lost and Never Found! She keeps me going, really! This story is finished and I feel accomplished. As a note of interest, in all my X-Men stories, Kitty Pryde is played by Kiera Knightley. 'Kays. 'Kays. For a full cast list with pictures, check out my fiction livejournal prettygoth_ink.
News traveled fast in the mansion, gossip being the primary entertainment of most of the student and teaching body. And it was some sort of aphorism that bad news traveled faster than any good news. The news that Rogue was on her way to kill Bobby Drake traveled faster than the lightning the secondary headmistress could summon at a whim. At least, news traveled fast to those that were awake during the wee morning hours. Since very few people were awake, few people knew that Rogue was marching her way through the mansion looking for her boyfriend. One of these, who was cranky to be awake at any time of day morning or not, was Logan, Rogue's mentor and some considered her father figure.
Logan loved Rogue. She was like that daughter he had always wanted and never had because for some reason he had the notion that he and women did not have a good relationship with each other. Meaning, he wasn't sure if he'd ever been with a woman long enough to marry her and actually have kids. Rogue could be sweet as the sugar endearment she dropped on the end of every sentence. He also knew that the tender and at times terrified sixteen year old he had rescued had grown up into a near twenty year old woman with a formidable temper. Some days, her temper made him want to pull his somewhat stiff and bristly hair right out due to her stubbornness. Ororo claimed that it was from him, as if temper attributes could be assimilated despite his lack of genetic ties to the kid. Hank begged to differ on that score given Rogue's mutational ability to copy powers down to the genetic level and how many times she'd absorbed Logan.
Logan sniffed the air and changed his direction. He didn't much care at the moment what his supposed relationship with the kid was, genetic or otherwise. He needed to intercept Rogue before she did something that people kept telling him was socially unacceptable despite all the problems it had solved for him in the past. He wasn't trying to save Drake's life. It might look that way, but he could care less what happened to that kid. Bobby had brought this down on himself and all Logan cared about was keeping Rogue from doing something that most people would consider stupid. Logan admired her for wanting to kill Bobby herself though. It took guts. He sniffed the air again.
Rage had a scent to it. The heat of the body releasing sweat and the scent of all the hormones running through the body and burning through the synapses so that all reason fizzled away to pure incandescent anger. The closer he got to Rogue, the stronger and thicker the scent became mixed with her own body scent and the various detergents and deodorants she used on her person. Logan increased his pace to a near run.
He rounded a corner and took the steps two at a time. Rogue strode down the upstairs hallway, hair flying. "Stripes." He said in a normal tone of voice, but a voice that no one ignored without reason.
Rogue whirled on the ball of her foot and set herself into a fighting stance. Bright red color flushed her cheeks and her eyes were wide and wild. "Logan." She could barely think. She could barely see past the red haze filled tunnel of her vision. Her fists curled into balls and she started to turn away back onto her mission of 'finding Bobby Drake and beat him into a bloody pulp.' "Don' stop me." She hissed and started to move forward.
"Got a job for you, kid."
Rogue faltered and closed her eyes. Behind them she could almost see Bobby, sweet, dependable, a bit possessive, controlling Bobby on the ice of the fountain kissing bubbly, Midwest girl next door, Kitty, his lips lingering over the exotic, aloof Lorna and his tongue jammed down the throat of that bitch Emma Frost. Rogue's fist clenched. She took a step forward to go after Bobby again. "No thanks."
"Ain't a request."
Rogue whirled. "You tryin' to get rid of me too! So yah all can talk and commiserate behind mah back about what a fool Ah am and how bad it is that Bobby Drake has a girlfriend he can't touch!" She almost screamed at him. She inhaled raggedly. "So bad that he has to go and cheat on me again." She looked at the floor, rage and shame flooding her body. Wasn't she good enough for Bobby despite the inability to touch? He always said he liked her, whispered how much he loved her. Couldn't he just tell her he didn't want to be her boyfriend no more? Rage won out over the shame. How dare he cheat on her o'er and o'er again!
"Nope. Just a job." Logan crossed his arms.
"Sucky timin'." Rogue swallowed against the lump in her throat.
"Your motorcycle is out waiting out front. Go pack somethin' for a day or three."
In the end, duty won out over rage. She didn't care that this was most likely a distraction. It was Logan who had a job for her. Logan trusted her. Rogue nodded sharply, turned away from her personal mission and walked past him, this time headed for her room. She brushed past him, quiet despite her rage. Her body stiff and movements devoid of the liquid sexual grace she usually filled them with. Logan's training stuck, keeping her movements as silent as possible. Logan watched her and then covertly followed her.
He didn't dare take any chances that she change her route and actually go and kill Drake. No matter how much the damn fool deserved it. Logan's smiled. There was some pain in the future for certain portions of the X-Men.
Rogue dropped her bag at her feet. She glared at him and crossed her arms. He nodded at her riding leathers and held out a packet of papers. She reached out and grabbed them.
"It's a simple recruitment job. You shouldn't have any trouble."
Rogue leafed through them. "There's no personal profile here."
"This guy avoids that sort of thing." Logan smirked. "His name is Remy Lebeau."
Rogue muttered something about 'the beautiful one from Rheims' under her breath and glanced up at him over the papers. "What's he look like?"
"He goes by Le Diable Blanc. You'll know him when you see him." Logan shrugged.
Rogue sighed and rolled her eyes. "That's real useful."
"It ain't like we got a picture." Logan nodded at the papers. "There's the address of a place to stay in there. I called ahead so they're expectin' you. You got a list of contacts and places he likes to go. If he's in town, you'll be able to find him. Keys for the apartment are in the envelope. Go get 'em, tiger."
Rogue gritted her teeth and shut the packet. She picked her bag up. "How willin' is he supposed to be?"
"Don't force him." Logan said.
She stepped past him and put her hand on the door. "Fine, no forcin'."
"Marie." He said in a quiet voice, most of the mansion still didn't know her real name and he knew she wanted to keep it that way.
She turned and he waited. She sighed and came over to hug him. "Sorry, Logan. Ah know yah ain't tryin' to get rid of me, but it sure does feel like it." She muttered.
He hugged her back. "Just take care of yourself."
"And don' hurt Bobby. That's my job." She looked up and glared at him.
He grinned. "I won't. No promises on Danger Room sessions though."
Rogue nodded sharply and stepped away. She walked out of the door and a few minutes later, her motorcycle roared out of the drive and towards New Orleans in search of Remy Lebeau.
That Day Around Noon
Jubilee pulled out a chair at the teacher's table and sat down. She glanced around. "Has anyone seen Rogue?"
Kitty shrugged. "Not since this morning. She stormed out of her room looking like, hella pissed."
Bobby shifted in his seat, but didn't say anything.
Emma twirled some pasta around her fork and smirked at Jubilee. "She's probably in the Danger Room or getting dirty in the garage." Emma said and sniffed.
Alex shook his head and reached for the salt. "I heard that Logan sent her on a job."
"Yeah." Lorna nodded. "Her motorcycle went out this morning. I'm surprised none of you heard it. She wasn't trying to be quiet about it."
Jubilee grimaced and picked at her salad. "Anyone know what that is all about, I mean, Logan, Prof. and Storm were closeted all day yesterday. And now Rogue is pissed?"
"Anyone else seeing a connection." Kitty tossed her hair.
Piotr reached over and patted her hand. "It is best not to jump to conclusions, Katya."
Jubilee and Kitty glanced at each other. "Oh well, I also heard something about Emma." Jubilee said and raised her eyebrow at the other girl.
Emma paused and shrugged. "I haven't a clue what you are talking about."
"Of course not." Kitty rolled her eyes.
Bobby's phone buzzed.
Rogue wadded up the wrapper from her sub and turned so she was straddling the bench of the picnic table stretching her legs out. She'd managed to travel several hundred miles since leaving that morning, snatching a quick breakfast while still on the road which was a real trick when driving a motorcycle, thank goodness for heavy start and stop traffic. She'd made up for lost time once she got out of the mess that was New York City by driving insanely over the speed limit.
She'd bought the sub at some point when she stopped for gas and when she couldn't ignore her stomach anymore, she'd pulled over onto a rest stop on I-81 South with a bunch of trees, a good stretch of green grass and picnic tables.
The rage hadn't diminished. It made her hands tremble and her muscles tense. The thoughts in her head formed a self-destructive circling pattern all during her drive as she could barely focus on anything else. Bobby Drake had cheated on her. He'd cheated again. Three times he'd broken his promise to be her steady. Three times! There was no excuse. There couldn't be one that justified it. She could barely believe it and had to because he'd done it before. What was wrong with her? Was her mutation that difficult to deal with? Was just being with her not enough or was touch really that important to him despite his protests to the contrary? Was that really it? Her hands trembled.
She wasn't going to take the blame for this. He was at fault. He lied. He said she was enough. He didn't need anyone else and every time she turned around he was flirting and getting to first base with other girls. She'd confronted him, twice. He'd promised he'd never do it again and then… cheating, lying son of a bitch. Maybe he didn't want her. Maybe he just wanted the attention she gave him and the sympathy he got from being the boyfriend of the untouchable one (and that was one of the nice names). She narrowed her eyes. Well, no more. She wasn't anyone's bitch.
She pulled out her phone and stared at it. They'd all be eating lunch, sitting together, talking, laughing, exchanging gossip. Tears sprang to her eyes, probably about her. She shook her head and growled. Well, she wouldn't care.
She was done. She was through with sweet little lying boys like Bobby.
Her thumb hit the keypad and she typed a message to him and hit send. Her lips turned up into a small smile. Take that jerk.
She was strong. She was Rogue and she didn't need him. She didn't need any of them.
She gathered her trash and stood. She strutted to her bike, tossing out the trash just like she'd just tossed her boy and tucked her phone back into her pocket. It was time to blow this little rest area and get south of the Mason-Dixon.
She had a job to do. She grinned, straddled her bike and kicked the engine open with a roar.
Bobby jumped and pulled out his phone. The conversation stopped as they all stared at him. He stared at it. "Uh, it's Rogue."
"Oh my god." Kitty leaned forward. "Answer it."
He flicked a glance at Emma. "It's just a text."
"Well, go on, read it. Read it." Kitty urged.
He opened the phone, accepted the message and paled. He read it once and then scrolled up to read it over again.
I'm through with you. Drop dead. Your ex. R.
His stomach clenched into a knot. Rogue had broken up with him through text message. Blood rushed to his face and he could barely feel his hands.
Kitty sighed and grabbed the phone from him. Her eyes widened as she read the message and she stared at him. "Holy shit." She whispered.
Jubilee stole it and read it over. "What the hell did you do?" She asked as her jaw dropped.
"I don't know. Okay." Bobby snapped, his face still read. He knew all too well. He just didn't know how Rogue had known.
"She just broke up with you by text message which is the lowest of the low way to break up with someone and you don't know what you did?" Kitty almost screamed. "My God Bobby, like, how much of an idiot are you!" She shoved at the table and lunged towards him.
Piotr grabbed her. "Kitty, Kitty, calm down!"
Lorna tossed her hair and narrowed her eyes. "Well, it's about time."
Emma smiled and nodded. "Such a waste." She looked at Bobby from under her eyelashes. She wasn't stupid enough to put a hand on his arm, even in mock sympathy. Bobby, the hottest guy at Xavier's was just plain wasted on the ever-untouchable Rogue. Sure, Rogue may be pretty, but there was no point to her looks. Emma kept her smile the same. Men needed touch. Bobby needed to touch and it was just too bad that Rogue couldn't give it to him and girls like, say Emma, could.
Lorna smirked. "Rogue's too good for you." She said. Lorna knew exactly what had happened. She glanced at Emma and the smirk turned into a sneer.
Emma sneered back. She didn't care what Lorna Dane thought of her.
Kitty ignored them both. "Whatever you did Bobby, you better apologize and never do it again."
"If you're lucky, maybe she'll take you back." Jubilee said. She tossed his phone back to him.
"Yeah. Yeah." Bobby nodded.
Lorna dropped her fork onto her plate and eyed them all. She highly doubted that Rogue was going to take Bobby back ever. Bobby was lucky that Logan had sent Rogue on a mission. Her lips curled into a sneer of disgust. Or maybe it was unlucky.
Next time: Rogue finds the Le Diable Blanc and figures out pretty quickly that things aren't going to be as easy as Logan makes them out to be...
reviews are love, love me?