A/N: for xenokattz. Loosely follows Alex + Charles + Scott drabble in Iterations.

Boys of Summers Have Gone

Scott started out hating him. This voice that tried to guide him and only turned frustrated when he didn't respond. The hand that would touch him out of nowhere. The insistence, "I'm your brother. Your brother."

"My brother's dead," Scott would answer, voice full of pain. He still remembered the flames in the cockpit, his older brother Alex catching him by the shoulders and telling him to survive before sending him off with the only parachute. And Scott had. He couldn't see without killing someone; he couldn't control the ache behind his eyes without the Professor's help—and Hank's; but he was alive.

That sharp recoil. The man's sharp footsteps walking away.

Scott wasn't sure what to do, but he tried to imagine what Alex would do and act accordingly.


Scott froze, though he had been sitting fairly still already. Professor?

A quiet reassurance. He is your brother.

Scott frowned. Memories of the acrid smell of smoke, the tightness of the parachute straps digging into his flesh...

Alex lived.

By the time, he's fifteen, he jokes with Alex that you just can't kill a Summers. Alex is a man now, not that half-grown adolescent Scott thought was manhood before he got his ruby glasses.

"What's the objective?" Alex asks, a tad impatiently. He's been teaching Scott strategy and leadership, in the hopes that he can leave the X-Men for other pastures. He wants Scott to take his place.

Scott goes over the outline of the whole scenario and looks up in dismay. "We'll be lucky to survive."

Alex shrugs, grins. "Can't kill a Summers."

But what about a Munroe, a Gray, a McCoy? Scott feels an ache in his chest with the responsibility and returns his attention to the outline. They're slaughtered before they step foot on the field.

Alex slaps his shoulder suddenly. "Hey."

Scott meets his gaze. He can't remember the color of Alex's eyes. Today, they're red.

"Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win."

Scott blinks. "That's a quote."

"So?" Alex grins. "I lost you, didn't I?"

Scott takes the hint and feals his fear harden into resolve. "We'll split the team."

Alex raises both eyebrows. It's not what he would do, but he's planning on splitting in a few months anyway. "I'll run opposition with the other team."

Scott gathers his troops against Alex's—and creams them.

By the time things go really south, he knows no other way to fight. There's no way he can safely knock out Magneto without killing the very girl they're trying to save.

No reason for us not to try to win.

"I have a shot."

Jean looks over at him, pained.

"I'm taking it."