Title: Tending Toward Destructive: Thing One
Author: jenn (jenn@...
Codes: St. John, Scott, St.John/Bobby, others (pre-L/R)
Series: On Love and Lust at Mutant High #19
Summary: In which Mr. Summers comes to chat.
Author Notes: Another mini-arc, because they are sort of addictive.
Archiving: List, otherwise ask
Bobby was avoiding him. Fuck. Remy, you better move a hell of a lot
faster than that if you wanna get by me.
"Elbow in, Marie!"
Jubilee was avoiding him, but he avoided her too, so that worked out pretty
well. So what if she thought he was a self-righteous bastard. If she even
knew what had happened, which he doubted.
"Marie, what the fuck are you tryin' to do?"
Rogue was avoiding him and he hoped to God that kept up for awhile. Like
the rest of their lives.
There were five things he noticed, and this was only the first. He didn't
want to say he cared, but he did. He didn't want to forgive her, not ever,
but seeing things would lead to that. He knew that much.
But that was the first, and he noticed it and started noticing, as he
hadn't for the long five days since he'd sent her from his room.
And five days alone was a damned long time--a lot longer than St. John had
It was instant and frightening, and maybe if it hadn't been, St. John
wouldn't have paid any attention to any of them. Partnered up with a
hostile Remy, he was totally focused today. No way in hell anyone was
gonna break his concentration. But that did, for some reason--maybe it was
Logan's tone when he said it, edged--though shit, Logan had been so on edge
the last few days that St. John couldn't actually remember him doing
anything but snapping orders and prowling the Mansion with restless energy
that didn't seem to require anything by the way of sleep. Maybe it was the
sudden quiet from Jubes, or maybe it was just some weird sort of prescience
when he would have sworn he had none. But he and Remy stopped as one to
check what the hell was up on the other side of the gym, and it was just in
time to watch Rogue do some serious living up to her name.
Her head came up sharply, and he couldn't read a damn thing on her
face--not precisely unusual in training. Spinning backward, bringing her
leg up and kicking the practice bag with enough pressure to knock it
backward--that was new. Rogue didn't have too much strength--all her
ability lay in the sheer speed she worked at. So that was something of a
shock, then the sudden fast jerk of her body and she came around, too fast,
faster than he'd ever suspected she was capable of, and her foot was an
inch from Logan's jaw, where he caught it mid-air.
That wasn't in the training run.
"Fuck me," whispered Jubilee. And how a whisper could echo in a room where
*everyone* had gone completely still.
Logan's reflexes kicked ass, no question--St. John was almost certain he
never would have caught that himself. Watched Logan flip her and she
twisted, landing in a picture perfect defensive crouch, staring up from
behind unreadable eyes, a low sound that could have been a growl--but Rogue
really didn't sound like that. And for the briefest second, St. John
thought she would attack--
--and apparently, Logan did too.
"Stand down, Marie." A pause, and every muscle in her body tensed, almost
deliberately, before she let out a breath, raising her head. "You wanna
"Just keepin' ya on your toes, Wolvie." A pause, and she straightened,
slowly, and even St. John could see the muscles in her back were tense and
hard. "We done yet? Got a class with Scooter to sleep through, if ya
don't mind. I want a shower." She reached for a towel, wiping her face
before tossing it behind her with a lack of interest in where it fell
(almost hit Jubilee in the face), taking off for the showers without a
word. Logan watched her briefly, eyes narrowed, then nodded to the rest of
"Take off." Turning away while they quickly put their toys away--St. John
wished he could snigger at that thought--and the rest did their level best
to get out of sight. St. John grabbed his bag, turning toward the door.
His social skills right now were somewhere in the region of nonexistent,
and he liked it that way.
In his room, he checked the clock, noticing Logan had let them out thirty
minutes early--half an hour before lunch. Which gave him thirty minutes to
find a way to avoid Bobby, avoid Jubes (though she was avoiding him nicely,
so no problems there), and since Rogue was completely avoiding everyone--
--fuck, he had some major time on his hands. Seriously. And showers just
didn't take that long.
A knock on his door was almost welcome, and St. John turned, pulling his
shirt over his head and tossing it in the hamper.
Not many people would actually wait for permission.
St. John supposed five days of tension would be noticed by the older man,
and the visored eyes skimmed the room briefly before coming to rest on him.
"You okay, Johnny?" A pause--Mr. Summers was all about sensitivity and New
Age male talky stuff, and it occurred to St. John that if there had been
anyone he *could* have asked about talking to Bobby, it'd be him. Of
course, there was that slight but disturbing possibility that Mr. Summers
wouldn't be too supportive of the whole idea of the younger X-Men getting
into serious relationships, or an even slighter chance that Mr. Summers had
Hmmm. Maybe not such a good idea.
"Fine, sir." Just fine. We're all good. Your least favorite group of
troublemaking mutants aren't speaking to each other, and Rogue is keeping
all that physical contact you and Dr. Grey are so afraid of down to a
minimum. You just be happy, sir.
Mr. Summers frowned briefly (what, could he read his thoughts now?), then
glanced at the desk chair.
"You mind if I sit down?"
Did he have a choice? With a shrug he hoped was casual, St. John motioned
to the chair, wondering if he should maybe put some more clothes on--well,
no. If Mr. Summers wanted to see him fully dressed, he shouldn't catch St.
John right before a shower.
"I've noticed some--tension--between you and some of the others." A pause,
waiting for St. John to possibly break out in confessions of something or
other that the older man could start evaluating. Maybe fix. Who knew?
"Just normal teen stuff, sir." Teens fought all the time. It happened.
Be cool with it, sir, go do something about that girlfriend of yours who
hits on Logan, would ya?
"If it was normal teen stuff, Johnny, I wouldn't be worried."
It really hadn't occurred to St. John that Mr. Summers would actually
notice, so worried was a whole new plane of shock. Unwillingly, he sat
down on the bed, quite aware that Mr. Summers might annoy him, but had a
deep and remarkably strong tenacious streak that probably would keep him
here until he was satisfied.
"Sir, it's not important."
"It's important enough for the Professor to have given special permission
to Rogue to be in the gym after lights out." A pause--oooh, Mr. Summers
didn't like that at all, that break in rules. No surprise. Leaning back
on one arm, St. John waited. "I'm worried about her and I'm worried about
the rest of you. Since the night Rogue and Bobby went off on their little
excursion, the six of you have been acting more and more distant." Another
pause, this time deliberate. "I've rarely approved of your actions
together, Johnny, but I don't deny that it is healthy. What's happening
right now is not."
"Why do you care?"
It was out of his mouth before he could even think to edit it--but images
of Rogue in the gym after lights-out bothered him. She still got up at six
with the rest of them for kitchen duty and she still went to classes. High
energy or no, she slept badly anyway--she couldn't afford to lose any more
than she already did.
Who gives a fuck. Let Rogue self-destruct at her own pace.
Mr. Summers, surprisingly, didn't react as St. John expected--a slight
smile turned his mouth as he leaned back, the visored eyes making it
impossible to read his expression.
"I suppose I could say that as future team members, antipathy isn't a good
idea, but the example of Logan and I is probably one that breaks that
theory." The slightest increase of the smile and St. John wondered what
that meant. "I could say I don't like to see any of you unhappy, but
that's normal and I don't like to interfere when nature can take its course
and usually resolves things better than adult interference." Another
pause, longer, as Mr. Summers considered what he would say. "The truth is,
I should leave this up to time to fix up, but I suspect that time wouldn't
do it--whatever happened between the six of you isn't healing, and if it
was going to on its own, it would have started already. Instead, you and
Rogue are avoiding everyone outside classes and Bobby is ducking into my
office to have long and remarkably odd conversations about the concept of
love and what it means. Without once managing to put it in a personal
context, and for Bobby, that's just a cry for help. He personalizes
St. John felt his jaw tighten.
"Maybe you should talk to Rogue about that."
Mr. Summers shook his head slowly.
"Rogue wouldn't talk to me if I was the last person left in the
Mansion--and I don't blame her." St. John jerked a little at the
honesty--he hadn't expected Mr. Summer to realize that. "I guess it's about
time I stopped treating this like kids being kids. You're not kids
anymore, Johnny--you're two months from being permitted accompanied
non-combat missions. You're going off to college to decide what you want to
do with your lives should you decide to rejoin mainstream society."
Oh, that would be funny. One good loss of temper and his suburban life
would go up in a neighborhood fire. St. John shook his head.
"I'll never have a normal life, sir. You know that. This is all I got,
"And with that in mind, you're willing to throw it away?" Mr. Summers
leaned forward. "Whatever happened between the six of you, it's affecting
more than you. It trickles straight up to the rest of the team. Professor
Xavier can't get anything out of Rogue and the other three that *aren't*
you or Bobby or Rogue don't have a clue what's going on, except none of you
want to talk about it. Frankly, when Jubilee came by my office today, I
Jubilee had gone to Mr. Summers. That was enough to make St. John sit up,
knowing Jubes' feelings on Mr. Summers and some of his interference
"What--what did she say?"
"That's in confidence, Johnny. You know that. But I think--I think you
need to have a talk with her. Just think about it--maybe all six of you
should sit down and decide how you're going to handle this."
St. John stood up, knowing he wasn't hiding his discomfort as well as he
"Thanks sir. I'll think about it." As dismissively as he could, turning
his back deliberately on Mr. Summers and going toward his dresser. "I have
to take a shower. If you don't mind, sir--"
"I understand, Johnny." The tone was different, slightly amused, as if he
knew (and how *could* he know?) that St. John had been affected. "I'll see
you later. If you feel like talking--"
"I know where your office is, sir."
"By now, I suppose you have the way memorized." Irony? But St. John kept
his back turned, and Mr. Summers' footsteps disappeared out the door--and
did no one in this damn place believe in slamming doors? Shit.
With a sigh, St. John went to the bathroom.
This wasn't his problem. Rogue et al wasn't his problem. Period.
--She has all the passion and attraction of airplane noodles.--Nacey's
opinion of Jean's wild side