Chapter Four

America, New York, The Xavier Institute for the Extremely Gifted, Morning 8:52

They called him Kai. No last name. It was a common word, found in any language, meaning many different things. It wasn't anything special—but the one who it belonged to now, he was something. Something else entirely.

Kai was kind, he was helpful, he was eccentric. His bubbly personality charmed them all. They all adored him, even though he'd only been there not even a month. He loved to draw, he loved to hum tunes, he loved art, he loved the creativity of the others around him—he loved scaring people. He found it funny. There was no one—yet—that could scare him back. He enjoyed pulling pranks, but none that could potentially hurt, emotionally or physically, ever. No one had ever been able to get him back. He told them, "It is not a prank if it is not funny—and it is never funny if everyone can not laugh." Everyone was included in Kai's pranks, which were quickly becoming infamous. He refused to single anyone out, repeating what he'd told them.

Even at Bayville, which Kai had entered less than two weeks after appearing through the mirror, he was loved. The football team had declared it their personal mission to look after the tiny freshman, the cheerleaders adored him. He fit in with the studious—his intelligence was far off the charts. The teachers were impressed with his work.

The Brotherhood wasn't sure what to make of him at first, it seemed. On one hand, he was with the X-men. He lived at The Xavier Institute, and he had mutant powers. That meant he was with their enemy. On the other hand—it was fairly impossible to not love Kai. Indeed, it was impossible to hate him. Even dislike. Well, there might be a few that didn't care for him entirely, but everyone liked him.

It's just how it was.

Kai was totally, completely, one-hundred percent lovable.

Well, that was her thoughts, at least. It might have been a bit biased, but, it did seem that everyone else thought so, too.

Rogue sat outside, at a table. It was sunny today, and they were having lunch outside. Monday was always a slow day for her, and every other student it seemed. The teachers always tried their best to speak in the slowest monotone they could manage, and the classes went on forever. She hated it.

But, it was like that with every school, wasn't it?

"Rogue?" A sweet voice called out, and the girl turned, grinning when bright, gorgeous green eyes filled her vision. "Is there something wrong? You are sighing every other second."

"Nah, it's nothin'." She shook her head, white bangs flying. "It's just, Mondays go on for so long, Ah'm so bored. Feels like mah brain's melting inta a puddle of goo."

Kai giggled from his spot next to her on the bench. "It does seem like that, doesn't it? It doesn't bother me so much, though." She raised an eyebrow, and, as if he knew what she was about to say—Kai happened to do that a lot—he told her, "Do you want to know a trick?"

Rogue blinked, the leaned forward eagerly. Kai seemed to know everything, so... "A trick?"

"Mmhm!" Kai hummed brightly, before leaning toward her so they were only about five inched away from each other. "When you get so bored, like on Mondays and such, I start to count slowly to one hundred in my head. Every time I hear the teacher's tone of voice change, I stop to listen, write down what they say, then start over again when they go back to monotone. The teachers' tone of voice changes, sometimes only slightly, when they're going over something that will be in the finals. Those are the most important parts. If I reach one hundred, I start over, this time trying to get to two hundred. You can try it next class. You have History 1B, right? I do too. If you tihnk you missed something while counting, you can look at my notes at the end, okay?"

Rogue brightened. "Whoa! That's smart, Kai! Thank a whole bunch! I'll try it, sure."

Kai bobbed his head, grinning. "Yay! I hope it helps. That's what I do." He tilted his head. "Well, mostly. Sometimes, I'm so bored that I listen to the whole entire lecture just for something to do."

They both laughed, and the bell rang, signaling that lunch was over. Rogue walked with Kai to their History class, and sat down in the seat diagonally behind the freshman. All throughout the lecture, she counted in her head. Surprisingly—or, not so surprisingly, Kai was right. She caught the teacher's tone changing at certain subjects—it gained a slightly urgent tone, as if the teacher wanted them to pay attention to this particular bit. She wrote down what the teacher was saying, then started again. 1... 2... 3...

Senator John J. Crittendon of Kentucky had two sons who became major generals during the Civil War: one for the North, one for the South.

1... 2... 3... 4... 5...

Missouri sent 39 regiments to fight in the siege of Vicksburg: 17 to the Confederacy and 22 to the Union.

23... 24... 25...

In 1862, the U.S. Congress authorized the first paper currency, called "greenbacks."

...7 … 8... 9... 10...

On November 9, 1863, President Lincoln attended a theater in Washington, D.C., to see "The Marble Heart." An accomplished actor, John Wilkes Booth, was in the cast.

17... 18... 19...

By the end of the class, she had a little over a page and a half of notes. The looked them over and they all looked like the type of information you would see on a test. She hoped she was right, and that she'd caught everything—but she decided to check with Kai just in case. She walked over to his desk, as he hadn't stood up yet and was still writing some last bit. Just as he lifted his pencil from the paper for the last time, she leaned back on his desk. "Hey, Kai. Thanks for the advice. It really did work! Can I check?"

Sure!"

They spent a few minutes going over his paper, as the other students began t file out of the room.

"No, you misheard that, it seems. That particular battle was at Shiloh, on the banks of the Tennessee River.."

"It did sound like only a fun fact she put out there for us, but I think it would be safe to write it down anyway. Teachers like to pull questions like this on us sometimes just for fun."

"Did you think that was right? Ah didn't quite catch the last bit, so Ah wasn't sure is she meant 1862 or 1872..."

"Ah! See, you spelled his name wrong. It a 'y,' not a 'I,' and there is two 's's... Look, "Ulysses."

Rogue left her history class feeling accomplished for the first time since entering high school. She was grateful for Kai's help, and felt really good about the Finals that would be taking place the rest of the up-coming month. She and Kai exited the building, after school that day, and wandered over to the edge of the soccer field. They sat next to each other under a large oak tree, and compared notes on the last class they'd gotten released from, which they also took together. Rogue finished writing down ne last formula before smiling over at the adorable little freshman, who was studying his paper with a focused look on his face, the end of his pencil pressed to his bottom lip, which jutted out slightly from the presser.

"Ah kind of wanna repay you, somehow, kai. This little trick you taught me will probably help for the rest of high school!"

Kai blushed. "No, you don't have to, really! Rogue, I was only helping you with your schoolwork. Isn't that what friends are for?"

Rogue grinned. "Ya think of me as your friend? Aw, thanks! Ah think of you as a friend too, and since we're friends and all, it's only right that I take you out for something to eat, yeah? I'm hungry, and there's this really good place Ah know of that sells ramen, and Ah'm craving it. You in?"

Kai blinked up at her innocently, and all Rogue wanted to do right then was hug him tightly. He tilted his head and his green eyes glittered. Then, he brightened. "Yes, alright! That sounds like a lovely idea, Rogue! What is this restaurant called, may I ask?"

Rogue cheered inside. "It's called Chang's..."

The two teens spent the rest of the day together, talking about school and eating ramen. When Kai and Rogue entered the Institute, the sky was just darkening, and both were smiling at ech other, chattering about just about anything.

"Rogue!" they heard, "Kai! Hey, where were you two?" Kitty Pride ran over to them, then hopped the last step and stopped, her head darting to one, then the other, a curious look on her face. "Were you guys on a date?"

Somehow, Rogue didn't even feel embarrassed, and Kai grinned, giggling. "Nah, Kitty. We ain't dating. I took him to Chang's as a thank-ya for his help on my schoolwork. He taught me trick to use for taking notes."

Kitty's eyes widened, then she danced over to Kai, hands pressed together. "A trick? Kai, can you tell me? Notes are soooo hard, especially in math class, I just don't know what to write down!"

Kai giggled, then looked over at Rogue. The white-banged teen waved a hand in good-bye, "See ya later, Kai."

He waved happily at her, then walked off with a chattering Kitty at his heels.


Thank you for reading I'm getting a bit lazy, since I wanna enjoy the little bit of summer I have left. That might be why there's a truckload of mistakes. Sorry for that. I hoped you liked it, though! I adopted this form someone.. problem is, I can't remember who.. it was only the first chapter, which I changed up a ton-so I guess it's not that story anymore, anyway.

I have a poll on my profile, guys, and I would really appreciate it if you all voted! Thanks!

Review, please! The more reviews, the faster I'll update!

~Scylar X.