Bad to the Bone
"Where do you think you are going?" The voice cut through the silence of the empty garage.
Rogue's heart leapt in surprise. She took her hands off the motorcycle and turned to look at the figure standing in the doorway. Jean. Great, just what she needed, Miss goodie two shoes herself.
"None of yoah business," Rogue said with an overly sweet smile as she turned back to the bike. But Rogue could hear Jean's footsteps echoing in the large garage, walking toward her.
"Rogue, it's one in the morning. You should be in bed. Curfew is at ten, you know that," Jean said softly as she wrapped her arms around her body. She shivered slightly.
"Ah don't need a babysitter," Rogue spat at her.
Jean flinched, taken back by the spite in the girl's voice.
Rogue smiled, pleased to see Jean on the verge of tears. She turned her back once more and got on the bike, Wolverine's bike.
"You can't sneak out, you know," Jean reminded her. "In case you don't remember, the professor is the world's most powerful telepath, he's going to know where you went."
"Do you really think ah care?" Rogue asked with a laugh. "I'm not trying to sneak out, ah just need ta leave. Ah know the professor knows that I'm leaving. If you were able to sense me, ah know that he'll be able to do it too."
Jean blushed. She hadn't sensed anything; she had just gone into the kitchen for a glass of water and heard some noises.
"I get really worried when you do stuff like this," Jean said softly.
Rogue turned around, not believing what she had just heard.
Jean's blush deepened. "I mean, we all do. We all get really worried when you take off, especially the professor," she said as she looked down at her feet.
Rogue was speechless. The idea that somebody would actually worry about her was something she had never had before. A small smile broke out on her face; these people actually cared about her–even Jean.
"Of course we care about you, Rogue," Jean said.
Rogue shook her head and sighed, "Ah hate it when you do that Jean. Do ya know how creepy that is?" Jean had a tendency to answer unasked questions.
Jean laughed musically and took a step closer to Rogue. "Sorry," she replied.
The stood in silence for a moment.
"So," said Jean, motioning to the bike, "you know how to ride that thing?"
Rogue gave a soft snort, "Never done it before, but it doesn't look that hard."
Jean gawked at her. "You've never driven a motorcycle and now you're just going to take Logan's?"
"Well, ah have to. Scott's car's got a flat tire."
"You've been taking Scott's car?" Jean's voice rose about two octaves.
Rogue nodded smugly.
Jean rolled her eyes and shook her head. Rogue had really earned her name. "Well, you don't have to worry about it now. Come on, let's go back to bed," said Jean as she stifled a small yawn.
"Ah have something I have ta do tonight. But this'll be the last night I go out, ah promise."
"Well you can't take Logan's motorcycle," Jean said matter-of-factly.
"Because you don't know how to drive it!"
"Do you?" Rogue asked with a wicked smile.
"Yes," Jean answered automatically.
Rogue kept smiling at her.
Jean stared at her. "No, oh no. Are you kidding me? No way. Uh, uh." Jean waved her hands and backed up.
"Ah figured as much. Miss perfect goodie two shoes is a scardy cat," Rogue said slyly.
"Miss perfect?" Jean echoed in a shocked voice.
"Yeah," Rogue retorted. "The Prof.'s little teacher's pet. You're the last person ah'd expect to come with me."
Jean's eyes flashed with anger. She took a step toward Rogue, crossing her arms over her chest. She tried her best to look threatening in a lavender night gown and bunny slippers. Rogue had to admit she was doing a pretty good job. She had never really realized how tall Jean was until now. I wonder what she would do if I made her really angry? Rogue pondered. She had never seen Jean loose her temper. A pissed of telekinetic, now that would be something to see, Rogue thought with a dark smile.
"And where are you going," Jean growled.
"Somewhere," Rogue said vaguely.
"Well tell me where and maybe I will join you."
Rogue let out a small laugh, "Ah seriously doubt it." Rogue smiled again.
Jean's eyes narrowed, "Try me."
"Ah'm going to that biker bar in town, Hell's Kitchen. Ah lost some money to a hustler last week and ah intend to win it back," Rogue replied nonchalantly.
Jean blinked in surprise. A biker bar? Betting? Hustler? Her eyes widened. Rogue could get into some serious trouble. She was about to say something but the smug smile that spread across Rogue's face made Jean stop. "All right. So let's go," Jean said.
Rogue blinked in surprise. She certainly hadn't expected Jean to cave that easily.
Jean tried to hold her look of bravado. What am I getting myself in to? She panicked momentarily.
Rogue jumped on the silence. "Well, hurry up and get changed. Unless you want to wear bunny slippers to a biker bar."
Jean left the garage and came back down five minutes later in a pair of cargo pants and a green v-neck cardigan sweater.
"Oh ah don't think so," Rogue laughed at her.
"What? What's wrong with what I'm wearing?"
"Ya mean besides the fact that it looks like ya just stepped out of a J. Crew catalogue?" Rogue quirked an eyebrow and plucked at the sleeve of Jean's sweater.
Rogue herself was dressed in her usual attire, plus a black leather jacket.
"Fine," Jean relented. "I'll go change," she twirled around and began to head back into the house.
Rogue followed her. "Ah'll make sure you don't screw up this time," Rogue giggled.
Fifteen minutes later Jean was pushed toward the garage wearing one of Rogues black leather skirts, a short red tank top, black leather boots, and Logan's oversized leather jacket (which Jean had telekinetically lifted from his room).
"I am not going out looking like this!" Jean protested.
"Jean, you are such a prude," Rogue grumbled.
Jean nervously pulled down the skirt, "I am not," she retorted.
Rogue turned her back and headed for the bike.
Jean stopped dead in her tracks and threw her arms up in disgust. "I look like a hooker!"
Jean just stared at her; arms still up in the air. She let her arms fall; they slapped to her sides. She sighed and looked up at the ceiling.
Rogue got on the bike. "You commin' or not?"
"Fine!" Jean said as she got on the front of the bike. She snatched the helmet and turned to Rogue. "I swear to God, Rogue, if even one guy asks me what my rates are you are dead meat." Jean put on the helmet and revved up the bike. She telekinetically threw Rogue's helmet at her stomach, leaving Rogue with an idea of what an angry Jean might be capable of. Rogue popped on her helmet and broke into a broad grin.
Jean bolted out of the garage into the cool night air. Rogue held her tightly as they flew along the road. The ride was incredible, just as Rogue had imagined. I have to get Logan to teach me how to drive this thing, Rogue thought with a laugh.
Fifteen minutes later they pulled into the parking lot of a very sketchy looking biker bar. The neon lights above the entrance proclaimed it to be "Hell's Kitchen." The parking lot, which consisted entirely of bikes, was packed. Jean parked the bike and the two girls headed into the bar.
"Don't you need an ID or something to get in?" Jean whispered to Rogue as they neared the entrance.
Rogue smirked, "Y'all are underestimating me, Red." Rogue smiled at the large man standing at the door. He smiled back and gave her a high five.
"What's doin'?" the man asked as they stepped into the smoky bar.
"Ah'm here to win mah money back, Johnny," Rogue answered him.
"Who's yer friend?" Johnny asked, eyeing Jean.
Jean took a step back and smiled nervously. "II'm Jean. I'm twenty-one."
The man burst into laughter, "Sure you are, sweetie."
Rogue gave her a shove, pushing her further into the bar. Rogue waved a quick goodbye to Johnny and maneuvered Jean over toward the pool tables.
Jean inhaled a deep breath of the misty smoke that floated around the bar. "Gross," she said as she coughed. She formed an invisible shield around Rogue and herself to block out the smoke.
Rogue rolled her eyes.
"Second hand smoke kills!" Jean retorted, sensing the girl's thoughts.
"You are the world's biggest dork," Rogue mumbled under her breath.
"Nothing," Rogue answered as she watched the man bent over the pool table. He was wearing a pair of ripped up jeans and a tight black tee shirt. His long bleach blond hair fell over his eyes. He looked up at her, an amused smile on his face.
"You owe me some money," he said with a smile as he moved over and placed an arm around Rogue's shoulders. Rogue shrugged him off.
He laughed at her and spotted the tall red head at her side. He looked her up and down. "Of course, there are other methods of payment," he winked at Jean and turned back to Rogue.
Jean's eyes widened.
"Down, boy," Rogue threatened. "Ah'm here to clear my name. Double or nothing. What do you say?"
The man leaned against the pool table and inspected his fingernails. They had gathered a small crowd of onlookers. "I've got plenty of money, how about something else?" he smiled innocently at Rogue.
Rogue laughed at him, "Sure, shugah, how bout I give ya a little ole kiss?"
The man frowned. Last time he had tried to put the moves on this girl he wound up on the floor in a dead faint. It was weird, the second he touched her he could feel his whole body go numb and then, there was nothing. Nobody makes a fool of Jack Hennessy, he thought with a scowl.
"How about your pretty little friend?" Jack asked as he moved over to Jean. He attempted to place an arm around her shoulders.
Jean grabbed his wrist and flung his arm away. She glared at him. "Don't touch me," she said in a quiet, flat voice. He matched her stare but her eyes never wavered. He was finally forced to look away. He moved back to the pool table.
*You go, girl* Rogue sent the thought to Jean.
Jean gave her a half smile.
Jack grabbed a pool que and held it by his side. "Lighten up, babe," he chuckled as he light a cigarette.
Jean glared at him.
He coughed and turned to Rogue "So, we playin' or not?"
"Yeah, we're playing. Ah win, my debt is paid, you win, I owe you two hundred bucks."
Jean glanced at Rogue. Did she really have the money? This guy had beaten her before, what made her so sure she could win?
Jack rubbed his scruffy chin thoughtfully. "How bout we make it a little more interesting?"
"Ah'm listening," Rogue said grudgingly.
"I win, I get to take Red here out on a date and we have a little fun. You win, and I'll give you the two hundred dollars."
"No way," Rogue said immediately. She didn't need to be a telepath to know what this slimeball was thinking. For once she was grateful for her mutation. She was untouchable, and he knew it.
"I'll take that bet," Jean said, stepping forward.
Rogue's mouth dropped open. "Jean!" Rogue hissed at her "What are you saying? Do you even know how to play pool?"
Jean shrugged her shoulders and said, " Never done it before, but it doesn't look that hard."
Rogue snorted, her own words were thrown right back at her. "Jean," she said softly, "you know what this guy wants."
"Don't worry," Jean assured her with a smile, "I'm going to win."
Jack overheard her and burst into laughter. "Whatever you say, babe."
Jean picked up one of the pool cues; "You have a bike?" She asked him.
"Yeah, the shiny black Harley right out front," he replied.
"I win, I want the bike."
Jack glanced around nervously. His bike? No way.
One of his friends jabbed him in the side, "Go for it man, she ain't never played before! This is going to be the easiest game you ever won."
Jack nodded and smiled. The two competitors shook hands as Rogue looked on nervously. "You're on. Ladies first, you break."
"Hit the white ball at all the other colored balls using that little stick thingy you're holding," Jack laughed at her.
"Right," Jean moved to the table, the entire bar laughing behind her back.
Rogue just grinned.
They stopped laughing when she broke and four of the striped balls went neatly into the pockets.
Jack gawked, "Beginner's luck." He mumbled, not even wanting to entertain the possibility that he had just been hustled.
He never got a turn. As if guided by invisible hands, each of the balls hit at impossible angles to find their way to the pockets. The entire clientele of the bar watched in awed silence as the eight ball rolled along the green table into the pocket.
Jean stuck out her hand, "Keys, Please."
Jack frowned. "No way. That's impossible. You cheated, you rigged it, there's no way you just did that."
"You goin' back on yoah deal?" Rogue asked as she stepped forward.
Jean smirked at him.
His anger rose and he made a sudden lunge for her. He gripped her shoulders and pushed her against the wall.
Rogue immediately leapt at him, but one of his friends stepped in. She wasted no time in landing a punch that had him doubled over and gasping for breath.
That was the signal for all hell to break loose.
The bar erupted into an all out fight. Rogue was decking people left and right, fighting furiously to make her way to her friend's side.
Jack smiled and squeezed Jean's arms. "What'd ya got to day for yourself now, Red?"
"I said, don't touch me," Jean replied in a low menacing voice.
Jack blinked and suddenly found himself flying across the room. He landed with a loud crash on one of the tables.
"Nice toss," Rogue commented as she had finally reached Jean's side.
"Thanks," Jean grinned and telekinetically grabbed Jacks keys from his pocket and floated them through the air. Rogue snatched them and they both struggled toward the exit.
Once outside, they quickly found Logan's bike. They found Jack's bike too. "Ah, don't know, Jean. Should we really be taking this? Ah mean, ya did kinda cheat," Rogue said.
"No, we shouldn't take it. It was wrong of me to use my powers like that," Jean admitted. "It was selfish and stupid. I could have exposed all of us."
"Don't be so hard on yourself, Jean," Rogue said softly. She placed a hand on Jean's shoulder. "Ya don't have to be Miss goodie two shoes all the time. Sometimes bein' bad can be fun," Rogue said with a grin.
Jean laughed and nodded. "You're right. I did have a lot of fun tonight, thanks."
They smiled at each other. "So let's get outta here, " Rogue said as she hopped on Logan's bike.
"Hold on a sec, I have one more thing I want to do before I go back to being Miss perfect.'" Jean turned to Jack's bike. She took a deep breath, clearing her mind and centering her concentration. With a look of strain on her face, she slowly raised her arms, raising the bike with it. It took about a minute of intense concentration to lift the bike and place it gently on the roof. Once the bike was on the roof Jean let out a sigh and lifted a hand to her head. She turned to Rogue and smiled.
Rogue threw her head back and laughed. "Oh, you are bad! You are bad to the bone!"