Hi, everyone! For some of you who read this the first day of it's publication, the name "Ethan" randomly appeared in the fifth paragraph. Yeah...oppsy. That was my bad. In my free time, I write books of my own and I guess I had the character Ethan in my head when I should have been thinking Gambit. Problem has been corrected by now. Sorry. Anyway, read and review. Hopefully somewhere in between there, you'll enjoy it.
For Gambit, love was truly grand. Not easy. But grand. Very grand, indeed.
He loved Rogue. There was nothing else to it. Whether she liked it or not (and she always was telling him that she did not) he was hers. This was not something he had come to accept with ease. No, there was a lot of denial and rationalization involved. But eventually, Gambit came to accept his fate as being Rogue's. After some time, he even came to enjoy it.
Now it was the simple matter of making her his. Which really couldn't be that hard. He was charming and attractive and lovable. All he had to do at this point was get Rogue to notice these fine traits of his. But it was very difficult to get her to notice his smolder when she was always rolling her eyes at him.
No matter. Love was grand, smolder or not.
Today was the ideal day to get Rogue to love him. Today was Valentine's Day. In the past, Gambit had never been a fan of the holiday. Too many expectations. Far too much pink for his liking. But now Rogue was here and suddenly he wanted to live up to and beyond those expectations. He still wasn't all that crazy about the excessive amount of pink, but he would force himself to tolerate it.
He wasn't quite sure at first what to do for the oh-so special holiday. Flowers were out of the question ("They make me sneeze," she said). Candy was not an option either ("No sweet tooth," she said). An adorable stuffed animal would not work ("Ha. You're kidding, right?" she said).
Gambit wasn't all that upset about the latter; he was not the "adorable stuffed animal giving" kind of guy. He was more of a "small token with a sentimental meaning behind it" kind of guy. And being that kind of guy resulted in Rogue smiling brightly, giggling, showering him in kisses, and going on and on for hours on end on how he was the love of her life.
Rogue had never done any of those things, but he figured the right gift could bring that side out of her. Maybe.
If that side even existed in the first place.
There was also that whole "no touching" thing. But whatever.
But none of that mattered. Trivial details to worry about after he got the girl. And it wasn't like Rogue did not want to be got—err, had. Oh, no. Despite her constant accusations of him being a stalker (which really was such a mean, harsh term) and wanting nothing to do with him (who wouldn't want something to do with him?) they were always in each other's company. And about eighty percent of that time together, she actually wanted him around. And on the rare occasion that he wasn't on her heels (which, as a man in love, was a very rare occasion), Rogue often sought him out.
You could drag the girl to her grave kicking and screaming before she ever admitted it, but Rogue liked him just as much as he liked (loved) her.
Maybe not as much as he liked her. But he she definitely liked him. How much typically varied on what kind of day she was having. What type of mood she was in (and she was always in some kind of mood). Generally speaking, however, Rogue liked him.
And so, because Rogue liked Gambit and Gambit liked her, he had been thinking about what to get his…whatever she was to him. It was not a friendship, nor was it a relationship. It was more of a "constant attempt to win the affections of Rogue for an unknown period of time before she claimed to get sick of him and he was back at square one". He and square one had become good friends in the last several months. Very good friends.
But none of that mattered. His never-ending and always entertaining attempts at wooing his kind-of-sort-of girlfriend were not what was important. Not at this exact moment in time, anyway (he figured he had another two weeks before she made her claim of being sick of him again). No, what mattered is that Gambit had been contemplating gift ideas for Rogue.
Flowers, candy, and cute stuffed animals holding hearts were all obviously out of the question. He recalled how in a recent attempt to regain her bipolar affections, he had started singing to her in his sweetest voice, channeling his inner Sinatra. That fell flat. But in his defense, how was he to know that Rogue would not respond well a Miley Cyrus love song? It was an innocent mistake.
As was his constant humming, singing, whistling, and general enjoyment of the said Miley Cyrus tune whenever he was around her. It was a catchy song that just happened to get stuck in his head whenever Rogue was around. And only when Rogue was around. And he loved music as much as the next guy, so it was an equally innocent mistake when he started humming, singing, whistling, and generally enjoying the song whenever in her presence. And well, if the song made her go all red faced and caused her nose to crinkle in that way he so loved and her lips to curl in that oh-so adorable way, that was an innocent mistake too.
Gambit was full of innocent mistakes.
Flowers, candy, cute stuffed animals holding hearts, and music of the pop star persuasion were all obviously out of the question. For just a singular moment, Gambit feared that perhaps he would let Rogue down.
And then it hit him.
"Yes, oh yes", he thought. "Love is indeed quite grand."
Now all he had to do was find his untouchable Goth.
Not in the living room.
Not in the kitchen.
Not in her bedroom.
Where oh where could Roguey be?
Gambit was just about to start checking underneath rocks and couch cushions when he found her curled up in a corner of the mansion. She was sitting in a window seat, a book open in her lap. Sleeping. And seeing Rogue sleeping so peacefully made Gambit happy.
She was a vision, her short brown and white hair framing the soft contours of her face. He watched the steady rise and fall of her chest. It made him calm. Made him a little serene. Made his heart swell with the love he felt for the beautiful, fiery brunette who lay before him.
Rarely did he get to enjoy the sight of her not scowling at him and not calling him a name that should not be uttered in front of polite company. This was a moment to be cherished. A moment to not be disturbed or broken. So Gambit shook her awake. And when she opened her eyes, he jumped on top of her.
"Roguey!" he exclaimed with over-exaggerated glee.
Despite her bleary eyes, Rogue mustered a rather effective scowl. "What?"
"Aren' you happy to see me?"
"You sweet-talker, you."
"What do you want?"
"It's Valentine's Day."
"So?" She yawned.
"So I bought you a little present, pookie."
"Stop callin' me 'pookie'. You know I hate it."
"Sorry. Innocent mistake."
"Yeah, right. I bet you-you got me a present?"
He smirked at her. "That got your attention, eh?"
"What did you get me?"
He dug into his pocket, pulling out a little velvet box. "Jus' a lil' somethin'. Here."
He handed her the box. She lifted a skeptical eyebrow. Gambit rolled his eyes.
"Jus' open it."
He watched her face with anticipation as she pulled back the lid. First, she was very still. Then (as expected) anger decorated her face. He watched her eyes flash with anger. It was like emerald fire. It was as enthralling as it was-
"You ass!" she snarled, twisting her body and throwing him onto the floor violently.
When he looked up, she was standing over him, her gift dangling from her fingers. It was a Miley Cyrus locket. Pink, gaudy, and glittery. Everything Rogue hated. Which was exactly why he bought it. He smiled up at her from the spot on the floor.
"What? You don't like it?"
"I am going to kill you", she said simply through clenched teeth.
"I saw it and it made me think of you." She narrowed her eyes. "You aren't even going to let me explain why I bought it?"
"Because you're an ass?"
He pursed his lips thoughtfully. "Well…yes. But that wasn't the only reason."
She made a noise that very easily could have been described as a growl. She looked as if she were going to punch him (and it was not the first time she had looked at him this way). Though he generally enjoyed living on the edge in regards to Rogue, he figured now was as good a time as any to explain himself.
"I bought it 'cause I want you to think of me when you see it", he said with a haughty smile but sincerity in his voice. "I hope you'll wear it."
"Why should I?"
"'Cause jus' like me, it's annoyin' and will get on your nerves. But it'll always be with you. Like I want to be."
Just a little, her facial expression softened.
"You don' 'ave to wear it right away. But whenever you're ready for it, it'll be there. Like me."
He tried to keep his smugness under wraps (quite a difficult task when his rightness could be sensed from the heavens) and instead gave her a smolder. A casual "Oh my, am I smoldering?" smolder. Rogue glanced at Gambit and his smolder for just a moment, her green eyes growing a little large before going back to staring at the ugly necklace in her hands. She opened the locket, probably expecting to see something sweet and romantic waiting for her on the inside.
Gambit was a nice guy (most days). But he was never that nice. His romantic tolerance only could go so far. Which is why, when Rogue opened her locket, the same song that he had been humming for over a month now played at a blaring volume. She slammed it shut and gave him a look. It was not a glare (but dangerously close to becoming one).
"You think you're cute," she accused.
He continued to smolder at her. "I know I'm cute."
Rogue looked at the locket then back at her kind-of-sort-of boyfriend. He watched her watch him for a moment as their whole encounter registered in her mind. She was completely still for a prolonged instant. Then, all at once, she came to life. With a squeal of delight Gambit didn't know she was even capable of emitting, Rogue threw herself into his arms. It knocked him off balance for a moment, but he recovered in time to hold her and hold her tight.
He loved Rogue for all of her crazy mood swings, her temper, her biting wit, her mean right hook, her ability to always keep him on his toes when he was with her, and for her spectacular ability to like him for (or despite) himself. And after today, he was sure she was on her way to loving him in return.
There was still that "no touchy" thing to worry about. But whatever.
Now, as they lay sprawled out on the floor, one might wonder why Gambit looked so very pleased despite having been at the receiving end of both extremes of Rogue's emotions. His happiness was not due to the fact the very same fiery brunette who was close to decking him moments ago was now hugging him tight and singing his praises (though that certainly did help). No, no. Gambit's goofy smile was the result of his enjoyment of being at the receiving end of both extremes of Rogue's emotions.
Why, one might ask?
Because he was hers and love was grand.