A/N So this is the end, thanks to everyone who reviewed, Shadow Sass, ALLREMS, Icelynne, Umbra8191, Chellerbelle, Kiren, Mirror's Mirage, and Angel897.
Marie and Remy were both escorted to the hospital by police. Marie was quickly given a clean bill of health but Remy needed stitches where Albert's bullet had grazed his leg. As soon as they were done at the hospital, they were taken straight to the police station. Marie was surprised she wasn't brought in wearing handcuffs.
When they arrived at the precinct, Remy loudly said that he was going to use his phone call to call a lawyer, praying that Marie would understand that she shouldn't say anything to the cops. He needn't have worried, Marie had dealt with cops before and in general, saying nothing rarely got her in trouble.
Detective Jackson questioned her for an hour until the lawyer got there. His questions were pretty basic, who was that? What happened? Did you shoot that man? But Marie said absolutely nothing, merely quirking an eyebrow. Jackson was about to fall off the edge of frustration when Marie and Remy's lawyer, Mr. Sheridan arrived. He insisted that unless they were being charged with anything they were leaving.
"We'll charge Marie D'Ancanto with the murder of John Doe," Detective Jackson said.
"That will be a neat trick considering you'll find the gun belonged to the deceased, multiple weapons were found on him at the time of death, my clients had no weapons, oh yes and the witness that saw my client, Mr. LeBeau, being assaulted and brutally beaten by the deceased," Sheridan said. Marie hoped they were paying him well, he seemed to be worth every penny.
She could actually hear Jackson grind his teeth before saying, "Fine, but we still need to question them on what happened."
"Of course," Sheridan said. "And before that, I will need a few minutes alone with my clients."
Sheridan spoke to Marie when Jackson left the room. "Self defense?"
"Good, making my job easier," he said.
Marie gave her statement to Jackson saying she ran into the bathroom when the witness screamed, there was a struggle over the gun and when he went for a second weapon, she fired. She left out being a life sucking mutant.
Remy's story was identical, despite the cops' attempt to poke holes in it. Yes it was an ambush, no he'd never seen that man before. Four hours later, Sheridan insisted either they charge Remy and Marie or let them go. Jackson grudgingly released them, instructing them that the police would have more questions and not to leave town.
"Anything to help the police," Remy said with a smile.
They made it back to the headquarters around 5:00 am, the hospital and police taking nearly seven hours. Even though it was early morning, the Guild was a hive of activity. People were running around, each with a job to do and a trail to make sure that police wouldn't find that lead back to the Guild.
"Remy, Marie!" Henri called from the balcony the second they walked in. "I know you're tired, but get up here!"
Remy and Marie had long since run out of the adrenaline that had been fueling them. They wearily trudged up the stairs, meeting Henri on the balcony. He started walking very fast and they hurried to keep up with him.
"As soon as you went to the police station, we started doing what we can," Henri said, referring to the activity around them. "We have people covering tracks, laying false trails, locking down any operations until police scrutiny if over and all that."
"Naturally," Remy said. His hand found Marie's and gave her a gentle squeeze. He knew she hated the idea of killing and he hadn't had the chance to talk to her since it happened.
"But the best luck we've had so far came from Belladonna," Henri said.
Marie and Remy looked at him. "You want to run that by me again?"
"Here," Henri said, ushering them into a private conference room. He spun a laptop sitting on the table to face them.
On the screen was a police report on the name Bennett Carizzo. The picture attached was of Albert. The crimes listed included petty theft, assault and attempted rape. Henri clicked to what seemed to be a psychological report stating that Bennett Carizzo was mentally disturbed, psychotic, and suffered from delusions that convinced him that covert agents were trying to kill him. The psychologist listed stated that Carizzo would be extremely dangerous if put in a situation where he felt threatened.
Marie looked up at Henri. "What's this?"
"The Assassins' contingency plan," Henri said. Remy nodded, understanding.
"So this is their backup," Remy said, then turned to Marie to explain. "Just in case something happens, these files are ready to be put into police databases. They make the person look like a crazy lone wolf and leads police away from the Guild."
"This is very good for us," Henri said. "This further solidifies your claim of self defense."
"Are they already in place?" Remy asked.
"Hours ago," Remy confirmed. "And, er, Belladonna wanted a call when you returned."
Remy sighed. "Okay, let's get this over with. Dial her up."
Belladonna appeared on the screen shortly. There were people rushing around behind her, the other Guild looking just as busy as the Thieves.
"Remy," she said.
"Belle," he answered.
"The contingency files are in place," Belladonna said, skipping preliminaries. "The man shown as Bennett Carizzo will be seen as dangerous and insane, leading him away from our respective assets."
"Hopefully keeping Marie out of jail on murder charges as well," Remy said.
Belladonna's eye slid to Marie before she answered. "Yes. It should look very good for a self defense case."
Remy nodded. "Thank you, Belle."
Belladonna nodded. "I apologize for any inconvenience this caused."
Marie looked at her incredulously. Inconvenience?
"Apology accepted," Remy said. They nodded, an unspoken agreement of Guild peace passing between them. The connection terminated and Marie looked at him. "Trust me," Remy said. "That's the most helpful and friendly you'll ever see her."
"So now what?"
"Now, we sleep," he said. "And wait while Sheridan works his magic."
As exhausted as Marie was, she couldn't seem to sleep. She was still trying to stomp down Albert's memories, his hateful psyche was still very near the surface. After an hour of tossing, Remy turned on the bedside lamp and propped himself up on his elbow.
"Talk to me, chère," he said.
Marie rolled over. "I'm not sorry I did it," she said. "And that scares me. I knew he was going to keep coming after you no matter what. It was logical, I grabbed the gun and shot him."
"That sounds like Assassin logic," Remy said. "You just absorbed the mind of a violent, horrible man. That psyche was close to the surface when you did this." He kissed her forehead. "I would have done the same thing and I believe even without the influence, you might have too."
"Maybe," she said. "It just bothers me that it doesn't bother me. I didn't even hesitate."
"And I think that was his psyche's fault," Remy said. "Wait until his mind fades a bit before you start blaming yourself."
Marie nodded deftly and settled into the circle of his arms, trying again to fall asleep. "What happens next time though?" she asked. "What if the next time I absorb someone like that, I can't control it and I do something horrible again?"
"This is an isolated incident," Remy said firmly.
It took two weeks before Sheridan finally reported that no charges would be filed and that the case was going to be ruled as self defense. Detective Jackson had done his very best to pin the murder on Marie, but every piece of evidence they came across pointed to his mental instability, further proving the case of self defense. The police report and psych records on Bennett Carizzo were particularly damning.
Over the weeks, Albert's psyche finally faded into the background with every other person she'd absorbed. He was particularly aggressive so it took a bit of time to rein him in, and it was particularly bizarre when he started to pick fights with other people's psyches and she had to break up the argument. She still felt guilty about not hesitating to shoot the Assassin, but she'd come to accept that Remy was right, it was the cold hearted Assassin that felt no guilt, not her. The fact that it still bothered her obviously meant that she had a conscience and wasn't as monstrous as she thought she was.
As soon as she was free, Remy whisked her away. "Where are we going?" she asked.
"It's a surprise," Remy said.
"Have you noticed that a lot of our dates end with Assassins?" she asked.
"That's why we're going away from the Assassins," Remy said.
He could only keep his secret until they made it to the airport when he had to give her a ticket. "Florida?"
"Oui," he said. "I packed your bikini."
Remy amused himself on the plane by flicking peanuts around the cabin in various directions so that they never landed in the same place twice. The flight attendant started catching on close to the end of the flight. Marie threatened to tie his hands together if he didn't stop. He told her he's never really been into ropes but he'd be willing to try bondage if she wanted. The seven year old behind them promptly asked his dad what bondage was.
When they landed, they had a two hour drive. Marie lounged in the seat with her feet hanging out the window, merely soaking up the sun and relaxing. Remy drove them to a cabin that had its own pristine beach and happened to be hours away from civilization.
"I could kiss you," Marie said grinning.
"Don't let me stop you," Remy said.
"Later," Marie said and hopped out of the car, running into the sand.
Shockingly, the bikini that Remy packed for her covered way less than she would have liked. Luckily she'd had the foresight to pack her own. Remy wasn't complaining, he still was perfectly able to gawk at Marie. She spent the next few days alternating between taking dips in the warm water with Remy and laying in the sun on the sand. They were far enough away from society that they didn't see another soul for over a week and then that was only when another boat happened to pass by.
Two weeks into their vacation, Marie was more relaxed than she could remember being in the last four years. Nowhere to be, nothing to be expected of her. She couldn't even be irritated by Remy's emergency satellite phone ringing.
"Hello?" Remy asked warily.
"Cajun! Where the hell are you?" Logan's voice shouted over the line. Marie looked over from her lawn chair. "You just disappear off the face of the planet and don't say anything?"
"Logan, how'd you even get this number?" Remy asked. Marie rolled her eyes.
"I yelled at that man Henri until he gave it to me," Logan said.
"I'll have to talk to him about that," Remy said.
"She's currently unavailable. I'll let her know you want to talk to her after I finish making her scream my name," Remy said. Marie hit him halfheartedly. She heard the growl across the phone.
"We'll see you later," Remy said and hung up the phone.
Marie leaned in, laughing and gave him a kiss. " I love you, you idiot."
"I love you, too my gentle flower."
Christmas was always a huge affair at the LeBeau mansion. Jean-Luc always insisted on the entire building being decorated lavishly and a few times he even carted in snow for everyone to play in. This year, the entire mansion was covered in red, green and gold. A massive Christmas tree took up the majority of the living room. Marie and Remy arrived Christmas Eve, having taken their own little pre-holiday vacation with their three month old, Amile.
The LeBeaus were thrilled to see her even though it'd been less than a month since they saw her last. Especially Claire who now at four years old was especially intrigued by the baby.
"Sweetie!" Mercy squealed. She rushed to them as they walked through the door, plucking little Amile from Marie. Mercy rubbed her nose against the baby's, making Amile shriek in delight.
"Mama let me see!" Claire said, pulling on Mercy's pants. Mercy led Claire to the couch, followed by Marie and Remy. "Her eyes are so pretty! Just like Oncle Pinky's!" Claire said.
Remy winced slightly. "And Tante Marie," Remy said. It was true, Amile had the black sclera of Remy's eyes but the irises were bright green like Marie's.
"You're right," Mercy said, rocking baby Amile. "She's very beautiful."
The little infant giggled, trying to catch Mercy's fingers and blowing spit bubbles.
"Yes, she is," Remy said. Amile shrieked in joy as Remy came into her field of vision. Mercy grinned.
"Amile is going to be a very spoiled little girl," Henri commented, sitting next to Mercy. "I swear, if I didn't see it with my own eyes, I'd never believe it. Marie, how did you make an honest man out of him?"
"I'm not just a pretty face," Marie said with a smile. Remy pulled her to him, pressing a kiss to her temple. "I wouldn't say 'honest' though, that would pretty solidly put you out of business."
"How's my newest granddaughter?" Jean-Luc asked, entering the room with a grin. He monopolized baby Amile for the rest of the night. Claire also crawled into Jean-Luc's lap, quickly falling asleep.
"You're right," Remy said, looking at the children in his father's arms. "She's going to be very spoiled."
After spending Christmas with the LeBeaus, they flew to New York to visit Marie's X-Men friends. Marie had returned to New York the previous year and after a few rather uncomfortable days, they fell back into an easy, albeit somewhat tense at times friendship.
"Hey," Marie said when the exited the airport, seeing Logan waiting with an SUV. She turned Amile to face Logan. The little girl smiled. "Remember Grandpa Logan?"
Amile reached up with those little hands for Logan. Tentatively, he took the baby from Marie. "Hey," he said. She gave a little sneeze then laughed hysterically. Logan grinned, starting to rock the girl in his arms.
"Grandpa Logan huh?" Remy asked, taking in the gruff Logan cooing at their daughter. "She really is going to be the most spoiled girl in the world."
"Especially with you as her dad," Marie pointed out.
"What can I say?" Remy said with a grin at her then a loving look at his daughter. "I love to spoil my girls."
They both looked over in time to see Logan making fishy faces at Amile, complete with crossed eyes and blub blub bubble noises.