Part 46

Cleaning the Slate

The flight back to Bayville was a long and tiring one, and for the majority of it, Rogue had slept through it, wedged between Remy and Scott in the small cockpit of the Red Eye. Remy glanced out over the horizon, it so unbelievably bright and blue as morning had come and the sun had risen. The world had never looked so beautiful, or new as it did at that moment.

His thoughts drifted to the fight, to the dozens of soldiers who would have black eyes, broken arms, twisted knees and swollen lips. And he thought of Sinister, as he'd melted into a puddle of silver liquid and disappeared into a drain, to be carried off with any other laboratory liquids that ended up only god knows where.

But was that really the end? Was he really dead?

"Y' think Sinister is really dead?" Remy asked after a moment.

"I don't know, I think so," Scott said unhappily, "I mean...I don't want to have been responsible for the murder of the guy," he admitted. "To be honest...It makes me feel sick inside knowing what I've done."

"He had t' die. He was dangerous. There was no way about it."

"I know that."

"Still. He...could have survived."

"He melted. How many people do you know can pull themselves back together after melting into liquid?" Scott pointed out.

"I don't know; we've both met a lot of mutants in our time, probably quite a few able t' do it."

"I don't want to think about this any more. We got out of there, we got Rogue, and we're safe. All that matters."

"What about those shards though? I mean...if he did survive, he's gon' pick each one up piece by piece until he has 'em all t' do whatever he gon' do with them."

Scott threw a glance in Remy's direction, "it's red glitter."


"You think the Professor was going to allow the real shards into a plane with you and me? We'd have killed each other before we even got to Genosha."

"So they were fake all a long?"

"I don't know where they are now, but Sinister definitely hasn't got them."

"How come y' didn' let me in on this before we got there?" Remy demanded, slightly offended that he hadn't been in on the plan.

"You had to believe they were real for Sinister to believe they were real," Scott explained. "I know you're a good liar...hell, I know you're a great liar...but I don't think you could have bluffed so well under the circumstances. Especially if the shards had been messing with you along the way."

"I s'pose y' right," Remy admitted reluctantly. "And here I was thinkin' everything I said on the plane there was jus' the shards makin' me wan' say them."

"No. That was just your conscience. Turns out you have one after all."

"Fancy that," Remy rolled his eyes, then turned his attention to the view again. "Never seen the sunrise like this before," he admitted, momentarily his eyes fell upon Rogue, who was sleeping soundly with her head upon his shoulder, her face was still pale although her cheeks were slightly pink. He felt slightly sad that she wasn't awake to share the moment with him. Especially since it was his first proper sunrise since his sight had returned.

"It's a new day, Gambit," said Scott after a moment of reflection. "And with a new day, comes a new beginning."

"You get'n' all philosophical on me now?" Remy asked, smirking slightly.

"You know what I'm saying, LeBeau," Scott said, piloting idly, he looked tired.

"I don't, actually," Remy admitted, "Y' see...I hardly know you really, so I dunno what way t' take such a suggestion."

"It's not your style to play coy," Scott commented. "But if you want me to spell it out for you, what I'm saying is maybe you should try to start fresh, with a clean slate."

Remy thought about this, "I don't know how easy it'd be t' try and clean my slate. I'd probably need more than soapy water. Maybe even more than bleach. My slate might be too dirty t' really be totally clean."

"Well, reasonably clean might do," Scott suggested. "Taking off the surface grime may do."

"How much grime are we talkin'?"

"Hmm," Scott said thoughtfully, "well. The swearing, the smart-assed comments, the insolence, the insubordination, the lying, the sneaking, the thieving..."

"All the biggies," Remy remarked.

"They'd all have to go."

"I don't know if I can completely clean all of it. I mean...a lot of that stuff is jus' who I am. I can't jus'...get rid of who I am...especially not jus' because it's a new day."

"How much can you get rid of for a new day?"

Remy considered this, "maybe the sneakin'?"

"How about you get rid of the sneaking today. And tomorrow, we can work on getting rid of the lying? And then the next day the insolence..."

"And so on, so forth?" Remy raised an eyebrow.

"Something like that," Scott shrugged.

"It's a lot t' think over," Remy admitted. "So...y' sayin' y' would have me on the team?"

"It's not completely up to me, you know," Scott reminded, "it's up to the Professor, and the other instructors if they want to have you with us, and train you, and invest in your future as an X-Man. But...yeah, after what I saw'd be an asset to the team."

"And what about me and you?" Remy pointed out, "it's obvious we struggle t' get along."

"Most team leaders don't get along with everyone on their team," Scott reminded, "you think I don't argue with everyone on the team from time to time? It happens. When you're the one who has to make the decisions and give orders, there's always going to be someone who you don't get long with and don't agree with."

"Yeah, but those aren't personal problems," Remy stared out of the window.

"We've made a break through," Scott reasoned, "you admitted you were wrong. I'll admit, I took a stupid shot and it nearly cost you permanent blindness. We both did stupid stuff. We're both sorry, right?"

"Right," Remy admitted, to admit being sorry and wrong still seemed to leave a bitter taste in his mouth, but he couldn't deny he felt a weight lifted from his shoulders to admit it all the same.

"Then we can just move on now. We shouldn't have any more personal issues. We established what's what."

"What if we do?" Remy pointed out, "Jus' 'cause we're get'n' along so well here now don' mean that tomorrow we're gon' be the best of friends."

"We' at it. I'm willing to, if you are. So stick around and work at it...if you have the balls that is," Scott smirked.

"Oh, I got the balls," Remy retorted quickly, "but do you?"

"Oh, I definitely have the balls," Scott responded, "I just wanted to make sure you did."

"Don' you worry 'bout my balls, 'cause I'm speakin' from experience, and I've definitely used mine more than you used yours, and I'm tellin' y' right now, one-eye. I got the balls. I ain' goin' nowhere."

Remy smirked as he stared out of the window, and he slipped his arm around Rogue as she slept soundly next to him. Despite whatever Scott may have thought at that moment, Remy felt oddly confident that what he had said, he meant. "Thanks, by the way," he said quietly, half in a mumble.

Scott glanced at him, "for?"

"For bein' the one to come, f' takin' down Sinister when I couldn'. I couldn' have saved Rogue on my own. We both know that. I know doin' what the X-Men do is sometimes a thankless task so...thanks."

Scott seemed a little stunned, but all the same, he replied, "you're welcome."


Woo! I'm so very pleased to have finally finished this (very long) fanfic. I appreciate the people who took the time to review, and who enjoyed it enough to stick with it and kept checking back. I hope you all enjoy the ending (and I hope that you all feel there's enough closure). I'm off now for a rest (and to go back to working on the three other stories I have lined up, lol). Love you all, thanks for sticking with me! It's been a very long year, phew!