Black Thunder supported Cyclops through the hall. Scotts only thoughts while in sick bay had been on Jean; all the pain he had felt then and still felt now was nothing compared to the fear he had for Jean. No one had known what had happened to her or they hadnt wanted to tell him. He prayed she was alright yet he feared the worst. Thinking about Jean brought back the unpleasant memories of that night which still haunted him at night and every time he closed his eyes.
Why did you save us? the younger man asked and Black Thunder was so long in answering that Scott thought he wouldnt say.
What was done against you was a break of discipline, he then said as they turned a corner and neared the cell. That and then Ororo would surely have killed him if she should have gotten news of what had happened if he hadnt interfered, he thought before he could stop himself. Why should he care what she would think of him? It shouldnt matter
but he found it did; a lot.
So, if not for the sake of discipline Jean and I could rot in Hell? Scott asked harshly and tried to pull a little away from the other man but had to admit that he needed his support. Black Thunder looked directly at him, his black eyes unreadable.
They reached the cell and since it was almost 2 in the night all the X-men were inside, drowsing but few were actually asleep because of the uncertainty of it all and Jeans distress.
Are you alright?
Xavier, John, Bobby and Kitty inquired as they were the first to spot him. Black Thunder had pushed Scott, more than a little ungently, through the force shield before Logan woke up and was aware who was at the shield. As Logan saw the other man his eyes filled with fury and he stood just at the other side of the shield, his eyes promising a slow death to his enemy and his hands formed fists.
Ill kill you, you sick bastard, Logan promised, the vow being reflected in his eyes. Black Thunder looked as if he wanted to say something but apparently changed his mind and simply walked away.
Scotts eyes found Jean. She was lying on the floor, dressed in what looked like a remade blanket. She had a beginning scar on her cheek but what froze his heart was the emptiness of her stare. Had they
..? Yes, they had. His heart sank. He hadnt been able to save her. It was all his fault. He had done this to her
..what she must have gone through
Jean! Oh God. Is she alright? Scotts voice was filled with fear and pain as Peter helped him to sit down beside her, careful not to touch his wounds or bandages.
Physically, yes, John answered softly but still wished Cecilia had had the opportunity to look at her.
Jean, Scott whispered and took her hand in his as he sat beside her. Was this what Ororo had gone through? All alone? His heart ached for her as it did for Jean. He stroked her cheek but she didnt response, just stared with a small smile on her lips straight ahead.
Why doesnt she respond? Scott asked worried, panic entering his voice.
She is gone. Lives inside her own mind, Remy explained as he saw Jeans far away look. If one should go it really wasnt a bad way to do it. At least ones mind would be at peace no matter what happened to the body. He hoped that Ororo had died with peace of mind if not peace of body.
I swear that if she doesnt wake up Ill not rest until I have hunted down and killed every last one of those damned guards and soldiers, Scott vowed hotly and Xavier knew that he meant it. In that moment, in his pain and grief, he really was ready to take a life.
Count me in, bub, Logan said as he sat with Rogue on his lap by the end wall.
And me, mon ami. Stormy didnt deserve this and neither did she, Remy said and the others nodded their agreement; wanting to protect and avenge their friends but to kill
there the three X-men were on their own. The others still held on to a dream, any dream and couldnt
wouldnt break it. Not yet.
Oh Jean. I love you so much. Please come back to me. I need you, Scott whispered as he gathered her gently in his arms and kissed the top of her head. For a moment her eyes flashed but then they returned to their unstaring state. The others slowly began to go back to sleep as it appeared Jean wouldnt wake up and all would have to be up for work again at six. Kitty fell asleep safe within Peters arms, Logan wrapped his arms around Rogue and during the night Bobbys hand had sneaked its way around Jubilee.
It was four in the night and all slept but Scott. He still held on to Jeans hand and still talked to her as he had since he had come back. If Cecilia knew what her patient did to himself she would chain him to a bed, instantly.
.Jean, come back to me. There is no danger anymore. I swear Ill take care of you. Ill protect you
.*sob* Im so sorry that I failed you
.It is all my fault
Im so sorry, so sorry
please forgive me
Scott whispered and tears fell from his eyes and he bent his head in shame. It was all his fault. Had he just been stronger, had he just taken the other way, had he just
.. a weak but definitely well known and loved voice said and Scott lifted his head and looked
into Jeans green
Oh, beloved. I love you so much. Please forgive me
., Scott whispered and hugged her and she hugged him back so tightly his wounds began aching but in that moment he couldnt feel the pain.
Its alright, Scott. It will all be alright, she comforted and Scott drew back with a small smile.
Now see? I should be the one comforting you, not the other way around, he protested softly.
I like helping you, she whispered and wiped his tears away with her hand.
..was it bad? as he saw the haunted look in her eyes he wished he hadnt asked but something in him had needed to know.
.It was but I pulled through, she said and now she tried to hold back tears as memories of eager hands touching her all over came back to her mind. She doubted she would ever be the same again. She felt different, dirty somehow
..violated. She wished more than anything to be able to go back in time and undone it all
.or to forget. She wanted to forget but as a telepath she was cursed with a perfect memory; she never would, never could forget.
Im sorry. So sorry, he whispered, his voice breaking. She touched his cheek.
Do you know what saved me? What I thought of? Where I went in my mind? She asked softly. I saw you. I imagined your arms and your kisses and your love. You pulled me through. You have nothing to be sorry for. You didnt do this to me.
As she said it she meant it with all her heart but somewhere in her mind she was scared and angry and the thought; Why me? They didnt do this to him? flashed through her mind but she was determined to bury it. Bitterness and accusations wouldnt help anything.
he began but stopped. What could be said which hadnt already been said? I love you, he settled with simply saying and opened his arms in invitation and without hesitation she went into his embrace. She didnt fear his touch, not this light touch anyway. She knew it would take a very long time before she could allow any nearer touch than this but she also knew he would never hurt her. She knew that his love for her was real.
And I love you, she replied and hoped that their love would also bring them through this crisis. There would be bumps in the road ahead, they both knew it but if they worked together, if they respected each others feelings and gave each other time and space to heal they could pull through, they would survive. Their love had lived through so much already. It would survive this as well. She couldnt do this without him. As if he sensed her thoughts he gathered her in his arms and held her through the night. She fell asleep with her head on his shoulder. Safe in his arms. Safe in his love.