There might be a few errors with the tense in here. Oops then, right?
Disclaimer: I'll get back to you on that…
Let's get this straight. I don't care worth spit about the little relationships going on here at the mansion further than how it affects training, how much I have to hear the girls giggle about it, and the inevitable threatening of the boys. It's all worse than a soap opera and 'bout as entertaining.
The furthest my interest has gone was during that Jean and Scott mess and that was because it was so annoying and obvious. So in your face, Magneto saw that one coming, and I don't even think that man is in the country most of the time. Lucky… But those two are practically married at this point, and just don't know it yet. I give it two years before they become each other's ball and chain. Happily too. Unless some blond-headed, blue-eyed devil shows up. They always throw things for a loop in even the most devoted relationships. Just trust me on that one. I've seen it before, and Summers is a man who has a spot for blondes.
And believe me, when Gambit showed up, talking of being a hero, I didn't buy it. Then when he started sniffing around Rogue, I was waiting for him to slip up so I could claim probable cause for his unfortunate death. I was so looking forward to it. Ever since we put down Apocalypse, things have been peaceful. For someone like me, that tends to make a man a bit…restless.
Of course, things didn't go my way. While somehow being a complete dog, Gambit treated Rogue like a gentleman, albeit a stalking, crude, and irritating one. And had Rogue uttered one word of it to me, I'd have handled him gladly. She didn't. He'd flirt, she'd snark, he'd flirt more, she'd laugh, then he'd flirt, and she'd flirt right back. It didn't exactly look like a cry for assistance.
And then that just went on…for months. I know about Gambit's past experience, but Rogue seems to have gotten to him somehow. Despite her mutation, he is genuine. But Rogue's scared. She's not letting go any further, and I can't blame her. That kid has gone through a lot of crap in her life, and trusting people comes hard for her. She just doesn't give people chances easily.
Now, I didn't like him when he first showed up, still don't in fact. He has a way of growing on a body…like a tumor. Really, Rogue's cheating herself. It's possible the boy will break her heart, and I'll have to disembowel him, but that's life. And if he doesn't, all the better for her.
Besides that, the girls will not shut up about the damn 'sparks' flying around here, and all the freaking 'chemistry'. When did my life come to this?
It is a crying shame that these are thoughts that run through my mind at two in the morning, when I'm trying to enjoy a cool beer. Chuck says no alcohol, but I happen to know about the wine and sherry he's got in his room. I don't say anything, he doesn't anything. Of course, mine ain't much of a secret. They're kept in the kitchen, and there ain't one dumb enough to take one. Except Gambit. He owes me three.
I sit a lot of nights right here by the window when the dreams get especially vivid. Visions of needles and one ugly human being, phantom feelings of pain, and blood are not conducive to a restful night. I'm not the only one who can't sleep sometimes.
Hank comes around one thirty sometimes after working in his lab, starts rambling about…science, and stuffing his face with Twinkies. They're not even that good, but the man is addicted, I swear. And don't diss the Twinkies. He gets…touchy about it. I caught Scott eying my beer one night around four. He was in a plane crash when he was a kid that killed his parents, and that entitled him to one beer. But that was a one-time deal. Next time, he buys his own. Kurt and Kitty are up sometimes, but that's mostly because those two are just so dang hyper. But my most faithful insomniac is Rogue.
In fact, if I tilt my head a little…yep. The girl will be in here in three, two, one…
The kitchen door swings open, and Rogue comes through, looking like crap. And I tell her that. She salutes me with a finger, and I see her gloves are absent. Must not have been a bad dream. When those happen, she covers everything before leaving her room.
"You don't exactly look like a million bucks yourself."
Always got a comeback, that one. I can only shrug and chug. What are you gonna do with the truth?
"Wanna talk about it?"
"What, your ugly mug?" she snorts and flops in the chair next to me. "We might be here a while."
"If I didn't know better, I'd think you were trying to draw blood with that one."
She's being surly, more than usual, plus the late hour, something's bothering her. Bet three beers I know why.
She shoots me this shifty look, like she's trying to figure out where I'm going with this and what I know. Well, she'll find out, and a lot more than she thinks. But I'm good at poker, and I don't give her a thing. Then, all nonchalant, she just shrugs it off.
"Gambit is Gambit."
Yeah. That's kind of the point, isn't it…
"You know if he's bothering you, I can," the claws slip out, "take care of him for ya."
"Wouldn't that just make your day."
"You know it."
She's not good at faking. That thought bothers her, him being hurt. And I point that out.
"Don't be dumb," she denies it too quick and her eyes drop to the floor for a second.
Girl can't lie for nothing. Why can't all of them be like that? Not that I don't know when they're lying to my face though, but still.
"Funny. I was gonna say that to you."
"Don't do that thing. You've done it with all the other girls. The promise of death and pain to the boy that breaks my heart and the warnings not to get involved. Kitty and 'Mara and Tabby have told me all about it and I don't need it. Like I said, Gambit is Gambit."
I give her a blank look, and try not to smirk. Look at her. All grown and giving a big girl speech. Seems like just yesterday we were picking her up off the side of the mountain after she blasted Mystique down a river. Time flies. I stall for time and down near half the beer.
"I wasn't gonna say that, kid."
She bristles up when I call her that, but rather than correct me, she asks,
"Nope. Sure wasn't, Stripes. I'm gonna give ya the same advice I gave Cyke."
She looked at me with this anxious look, expecting some kinda wisdom that comes from experience or probably some quote. Of course, she really shouldn't be expecting anything like that. I ain't Hank.
"Either you tell him, or so help me, I will."
Her mouth drops wide open and forehead scrunches up in a frown. I can't not smile at that.
"You tryna catch flies or somethin'?"
Her mouth snaps shut with a click, and she just keeps staring. She's floundering like a fish for a minute before she can actually talk.
"Y-you mean you…approve of him?"
"Oh, heck, no. I can't stand the little prick."
She sounds like she thinks I've lost my mind. Well, just look where I live. Would it be any wonder if I had?
"'Cause you like him. He makes you happy, much as you deny it. There's no reason in the world why you shouldn't be happy. You deserve it. And I tell ya now, Stripes, I ain't gonna like any of the guys you girls decide to pick up. It's never going to happen, but I'm getting to the point I can tolerate him. For your sake anyway."
"Logan," she says it in this wondering way, looking at me like she's never seen me before, "you're a freaking romantic!"
"You shut your lying mouth."
Me, a romantic? That is the last thing I need going around.
"No," she is laughing at me, "For real. You are. I mean, do ya hear yourself?
"Go to bed, or go the the Danger Room now, Stripes."
There was a smile trying to show on her face, but she made a valiant effort to hold it back as she quietly stood and padded away. She whispered it but knew good and well I'd hear her anyway,
"Big ol' teddy bear."
"You tell no one," I called after her.
I swear, she laughed at me.
I scrub a hand down my face. That's just great. This is the kind of thing that can ruin a man. My only assurance was this sly look before she went through the door. I am not assured. I can only roll my eyes and search for another beer. The other, empty bottle is tossed in the trash, and one of the boys needs to take that out. They never do their chores. Just put them off until it's too late and then they 'forget'.
Speaking of which…
Before I can reason my way out of it, I'm at the stupid Cajun's door. Do I knock? What kind of question is that to be asking me, of all people? Because of his age, and probably 'donating' a hefty portion of 'his' money, Gambit got a room to himself and he's sprawled over the entire queen sized bed, snoring.
The lights stay off because the last time someone woke him up like that, he nearly blew up the room. Apparently, his eyes are very sensitive and he is even less of a morning person than Rogue. At least he's not a slob so I don't trip over any clothes or spiky shoes. I walk right up to him, snatch the pillow from under his head, and hit him with it. He makes a noise like choking before he bolts up, already charging the sheets on the bed. His red eyes contrast against the dark, and he blinks up at me.
"I didn't do it! I was framed! They're all lies!"
I don't believe him. I don't know of anything, but he probably did do it, he was not framed, and it's all true. But that'll come later.
"Gambit, would you shut up! I ain't here to take your head off."
He eyes me suspiciously then carefully draws his blanket up to his neck.
"Then why are you here?"
My eyes is twitching. I swear, this kid's gonna give me an aneurism…if I don't kill him.
No. No, I'm not going to do that…yet.
"I'm going to ignore that for Rogue's sake."
He immediately perks up at the mention of her name. Ugh.
"This is about Rogue? …I didn't do it."
"You better not. Not until you get a ring on her."
"If you were to ask Rogue out tomorrow, chances are good she'll agree, and that I'll allow it."
"Wait…you're giving me your blessing?"
"Heck, no! I think you're a no good, lying dog, and I don't really like you. I'm allowing you a chance to be decent, but if you break her heart, I will hang you off the mansion roof by your intestines."
"Okay. So, no pressure, right, mon ami?"
I just shrug, slam his pillow over his face, and leave, wishing I had something harder to hit him with. I'm not stupid enough to leave this completely to them. They're young; they make mistakes and need all the help they can get.
A board creaks behind me and I don't even need to look.
"Go to bed, Jamie."
"Want to go to the Danger Room?"
The door closes. I hear the kid go back to bed, albeit reluctantly. Then there's sniffling. Like crying.
Oh, come on!
I can't believe I'm doing this.
I open the door.
"Get up and…go eat a Twinkie or something then go back to bed."
The shrimp hops out of the bed, over Sam's sleeping form, and almost bolts past me down the hall. As if remembering something, he stops and turns to me.
"Thanks, Mr. Logan."
…it's just a Twinkie. Does this kid not eat? 'Cause it ain't that big a deal. I shut the door and we walk back toward the kitchen together.
"Yeah, well, this is a one time thing. From now on, when you go to bed, stay in bed."
"You don't stay in bed."
"I don't go to bed."
"'Cause you're grown?"
"Somethin' like that."
Actually, no. It has little to do with that, and I do go to bed but I end up on the floor with night sweats a lot. Sleep is overrated. Coffee is life.
"How old are you?"
"I can't remember."
"Do you have Alzheimer's?"
"Shut up and go eat your da – snack."
This is unbelievable. This is just wrong. I've been reduced to a freaking matchmaker and babysitter. Fan-freaking-tastic.
A/N:..what? I was bored. Blame the fox. Blame the Waterbender. Blame society and sloppy joe. Blame it on the a-a-a-a-amount of coffee I drink, got me feelin' loosely based in reality. None of that is relevant, but blame them anyway.