AN: To begin with this is just a bit (as in miles) out of my 'comfort zone'. I love the movies but I've never tried to write something for it. I don't so much like short chapters, that's a bit of a change for me. I'm also not so good with this one POV thing, I like to be in everyone's head, but it's been fun so far trying to stay just in one, and in one that doesn't have as much going on as he should (meaning memories, not brain activity, I'm not that mean). I've got a bit more of this than you're seeing written, but it's very much a work in progress and I won't promise that after the first few chapters that it won't deteriorate into a collection of related one-shots. I'm still progressing on Belongs to Her, it's not lying neglected while this is working it's way out of my twisted mind and into type. I hope you enjoy. ~Akane Nyx
- The Call -
The sound of his phone jolted him awake and like almost every time that he awoke it took him a moment to figure out exactly where he was. At least tonight, he conceded, he wasn't wondering when it was. Something had happened on Alcatraz. The dreams, the nightmares, were getting more vivid. Sometimes when he woke if felt like he was still then.
He looked about the room he was in. There was a light glow coming from the his left, behind the wall. Tacky wallpaper; slightly itchy, stiff sheets, lumpy pillow. It didn't take long for it to come back to him. A hotel. Best Western. Just north of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The clock read just before three.
Eighteen days ago he'd gotten the urge to go for the first time since they'd lost the professor. He'd been at the mansion for almost six months: history classes, art classes, combat training, the occasional trip into town for the few supplies that they didn't have delivered. At the time he thought that he was hiding it pretty well. But 3 days latter Storm had cornered him between classes and given him a stack of files of potential students, an itinerary, and keys to one of their fancier cars. "Everything you need is there," she'd told him. You're leaving tomorrow. It should take you between three weeks plus the ride back. Go get a haircut and some decent clothes. You're going to be representing all of us." It wasn't the same as getting on the bike and going blindly, but it took the edge off.
The room dropped silent. He cursed and fumbled for his phone on the nightstand. He didn't even bother to check the caller ID before punching the button to return the call. No one outside the mansion needed to contact him, it had to have been Storm with another kid to add to his list.
The phone picked up at the end of the first ring, "Who do you have for me now, Storm?" he asked.
"Logan... It's me." The familiar thick-southern accent was strained; her voice hoarse as though she'd screamed, or cried, herself out.
"No." On the other end of the line she drew a shaky breath. "It's Rogue." She didn't sound nearly as confident as she had the last time she'd corrected him as to her name.
He swore, some of the words coming out in other languages, "Are you alright?"
"I'm fine." She didn't sound 'fine'. Her voice cracked.
"Marie?" he asked again, trying to keep her talking. He was already out of bed and halfway into his jeans.
"I... I didn't even know... There wasn't any warnin'... Just came back... They're sayin' they'll come 'round but... but... I just..."
"Calm down Marie. Just let me call Storm."
"To tell her I'm coming back early." He tossed his suitcase up on the bed and started to check that he had everything.
"You don't need to do that. I just... I needed a friend."
His heart sank. "I'll be there in about eighteen or nineteen hours. It'd be sooner but she made me bring a car."
He said the last word with such distaste that she almost smiled. "You gotta job to do. I'm not havin' you come rushin' back here just 'cause I put my ex-boyfriend and my roommate in the hospital wing."
Several words in that sentence caused him a degree of panic but he just said, "Alright."
"Yeah. I'll keep doing what I'm supposed to out here. Can you hold on a minute?"
"Sure." He wasn't sure if she sounded more disappointed or relieved.
He reached for the in room phone and dialed storms number before poking the speaker button on his cell and holding it where she could hear his half of the conversation. "Storm... Yeah I know it's early... Been looking at this one file. It's going to take a woman's touch to convince... I know you can't. Send Rogue... But nothing... I already know... We knew it happened to Magneto, there was always a chance... Give her a couple more files and put her on a plane... No, the first one out today... Damnit Storm, I'm not helping her run and she's not going to think you're chasing her off... That's exactly it. We'll be back once it's all sorted out... Yeah, if anyone can it's me... Call me back and let me know when she's landing." He dropped the phone back in it's cradle.
"Logan, what have you done?"
"Don't argue. Just pack," he said in a surprisingly reassuring voice.
"You're serious. I can't leave. Not now."
"Kid, this is more important right now. Storm's said they'd be fine."
"I can't fly commercial. Not like this. What if I..."
"You'll be fine. I'll see you in a few hours."
"Just pack. You'll need warm clothes."
"Warm clothes? But you're in Oklahoma."
"Not for long. And grab my old leather coat. She made me leave it at home.
"What did you mean 'when we get it all sorted out'?"
"Kid, quit asking so many questions and pack."
"Quit calling me 'Kid'."
Logan smirked, "Alright Marie. Tell storm I'm tapping the contingency fun and shipping the car back as soon as we're done with the recruits."
"No more questions," he insisted as he tossed his suitcase back on the floor. "I'm going to try to get a couple hours of sleep and check another kid off my list before you get into town. I'll pick you up at the airport."
He no more than hung up his cell than the room phone rang. "She's flying United. Plane lands at two. You'd better know what you're doing." The line went dead before he could even open his mouth.