Title: Oh, The Irony
Author: Amy Denton
Summary: What if...? Bobby 'The Iceman' Drake is betrayed by another
student at The Xavier School and nearly pays with his life.
Rating: PG-13. Some mild violence at the end of the story.
Archive: Yes, please. Just tell me where it's going.
For disclaimer information and notes on the story, please see Part 0.
It was the easiest thing in the world to say 'Sure, no problem' but by
saying that Bobby Drake bought more trouble than he ever thought
"Where you going?" Rogue asked Bobby when she saw him pulling on a
jacket and hat.
"Gonna run into New Salem and pick up the newest comic books for one
of the newer kids." Bobby replied.
"Using what for transportation?"
"Cook is going to visit her sister in Croton-on-the-Hudson and she's
going to drop me in town. I'll call for a lift back." Bobby kissed
Rogue on the cheek and headed for the kitchen.
Night fell and with it the temperature. But Bobby had yet to call
asking for a ride back. Rogue did her best not to worry but with dinner
rapidly approaching and no Bobby,she could stand it no longer. She left
the other students watching tv and went to find Professor Xavier. There
was this nagging feeling deep in the pit of her stomach. Bobby was in
trouble and needed help.
"Professor Xavier?" Rogue asked, finding him in the library.
"Yes, Rogue?" Professor Xavier, looking all for the world likes
someone's grandfather, paused in his reading.
"Bobby hasn't come back yet and it's getting dark."
"When did he leave?"
"Around three, he should've been back by now." Rogue opened her mind
up completely so that the Professor could understand how deeply worried
"Do you think he's in trouble?"
Rogue nodded. "I can't shake the feeling that something's gone really
"All right. I'll go look for him. You wait here and when I find him,
I'll send for you." Professor Xavier rolled away, headed for the one
place that could tell him exactly where Bobby was.
Professor Xavier did not send for Rogue when he found Bobby, he sent
for the other adults, the X-Men, at the school, instead. Rogue watched
as one by one Scott, Storm, Jean and, finally, Logan disappeared and
then, the rumble of the X-Jet's engines could be heard. Rogue appetite
vanished and she left the dinning room without touching dinner.
Professor Xavier had located Bobby 75 miles to the north on an
abandoned farm, whether in the barn, one of the outbuildings or even
the old farmhouse, Bobby's mutant signature simply wasn't strong
enough to pinpoint exactly where.
Upon landing, the four adults split up to search the abandoned barn
and outbuildings. Jean and Logan headed for the barn while Scott and
Storm headed towards the smaller outbuildings. The temperature, already
in the mid-30's and dropping quickly, made finding Bobby as quickly as
possible all the more urgent.
The dilapidated barn still clung to its basic form even as it fought a
losing battle with gravity. The first casualty, the sagging overhead
hay loft that once had been used to feed the animals stabled in the six
stalls the barn held. A wide aisle, wide enough for a large cart and a
team of horses separated the stalls with three on each side of the
aisle. Towards the front of the barn, a short hallway leading to what
had been a small tack room branched off from the first stall on the
left. In its time, the barn had probably held all manner of beasts from
horses to oxen and then some. Now, all it held was the faint smell of
old hay and decaying wood and, possibly, the object of their search.
"Bobby!" Jean shouted into the darkness, her words coming out as steam
in the frigid night air. Silence was her answer. She flipped on her
flashlight and flashed it around the empty barn but saw nothing. She
closed her eyes for a moment in an attempt to find him psychically but
nothing leapt out at her.
"I'll go look in the tackroom." she said to Logan. "You start on the
stables then we'll meet and decided what to do next if he's not here."
Logan nodded then looked up at the hay loft. "You think he might be up
there?" he asked.
Jean looked up and focused the flashlight on it. She shook her head
and said "I think if he was, we'd know already. It's too rickety."
They split up and started looking, neither saying what each was
thinking. What if Bobby wasn't there? What if they didn't find him?
Logan sniffed the air, trying to pick up Bobby's scent. At first, his
nostrils filled with the smell of musty old barn, old hay, rotting
wood. He concentrated and shifted through the scents. Bobby had to be
in the barn. If Bobby wasn't, what would he tell Rogue?
Very faint but the scent of a male human drifted towards Logan's keen
nose. He flipped on his flashlight and let his nose lead him. In the
very last stall, at the opposite end from where he started, Logan held
his breath and poked the flashlight in.
His nose had not failed him, illuminated by the beam lay Bobby, curled
up into a ball.
"Jean!" he bellowed, crossing the stall in three steps. He knelt down
by Bobby, pulled off his gloves and checked for a nonexistent pulse.
*Damn, damn, damn.*
"C'mon, Ice Pop," he muttered at Bobby, uncurling the teen's stiff
body. "yer supposed to freeze other stuff, not yerself." He turned to
yell for Jean again but she was already at his side.
She set down the First-Aid bag she carried, tugged off her gloves and
checked for a pulse before Logan could tell her there wasn't one. But
instead of checking at the jugular, like he had, Jean checked Bobby's
pulse at his wrist.
"Um...Jean," Logan started to say but was waved off by her.
"Open the First-Aid bag, take out the blankets and start wrapping him
up." Jean said, her fingers still on Bobby's limp wrist.
"Jean, I checked, he's got no pulse." Logan said.
"Logan, just do what I ask. I'll explain in a moment." Jean replied.
Logan shrugged and reached for the First-Aid bag. He looked up a
moment later and was startled to see a smile on Jean's face.
"Jean, what..." Logan started again but was interrupted by Jean.
"Bear with me for a few more moments." Jean said. She tinkered with a
portable oxygen machine for a moment, pouring water from bottle into a
holding container on the machine. She slipped an oxygen mask over
Bobby's nose and mouth, and flipped a switch, the machine coming to
life with a low hum. She shined a light into Bobby's eyes, then pulled
a thermometer out of the First-Aid bag and slid it into his ear.
Logan, finished wrapping Bobby up, sat back on his heels and said
Jean looked up from the thermometer and said "He's not dead, Logan,
he's got hypothermia."
//Scott, we've found Bobby in the barn. Go get the stretcher from the
jet.// Jean sent a mental message to Scott, who relayed the message to
Storm. And by the time Scott made it to the barn, Storm had warmed the
stall up considerably. He set the stretcher down next to Bobby and
tried not to think of how still the teenager was.
//Relax. Bobby should be just fine once he gets warmed up.// Jean told
him through their mindlink.
"How long do you think he's been here?" Scott asked.
"Two hours, maybe three." Jean replied. "Not that long."
"But long enough," Logan said.
"Not really but that doesn't matter now that we're here." Jean
replied. "Logan, help me put him in the stretcher. The moment he's
stable enough to be moved, I want to go but be very gentle. If he's
jostled too much, it could kill him."
Logan's eyes widened for a moment before picking up the teenager.
After Bobby was settled and the blankets wrapped around him, Jean took
his temperature again.
"Getting there," she said. She looked up and around at the blank faces
surrounding her and knew it was time for a mini-lesson on human
"When the human body gets really cold, all the blood is shunted to the
major organs, heart, lungs, etc. to keep them going until the body can
warm up again. As the body warms up, the cold blood that had been down
in the legs and arms starts to recirculate and rewarm but it's still
cold. If the person gets moved too suddenly or too soon, the cold blood
gets dumped into the heart, shocking it out of its regular beat and
usually causing a heart attack. The longer we wait, the higher Bobby's
temperature goes and the better it is for him. A lot of the time,
there isn't a choice to wait but thanks to Storm, we can."
Storm smiled to show she had heard but remained focused on her task.
Jean, her lesson done, checked Bobby's pulse and rearranged the
blankets around him. "Any questions?" she asked.
"How'd this happen?" Logan asked. "How'd he wind up out here?"
"I don't know." Jean replied. "But when he wakes up, we can ask him."
Scott, quiet until then, voiced the unspoken thought among them. "He
might have been grabbed by someone like Stryker but was able to escape.
Whoever it was, they might still be lurking around. I know I'm stating
the obvious but we need to get out of here as soon as possible. The
longer we stay, the bigger a target we become."
Jean nodded but said "I'd like to keep from moving Bobby for another
half-an-hour, if possible. After then, we'll just have to take the
Scott nodded. He looked at Logan and said "Come on, between the two of
us, we can set up a decent perimeter."
Logan nodded and left with Scott.
Rogue paced the hallway in front of the hanger doors. She knew that
the longer the rest of the team were gone, the lesser the chance they
had of finding Bobby alive and her throat tightened at the very
thought. The first boy she had actually been able to kiss without
almost killing him and now, he could be dead. Tears sprang into her
eyes but she blinked them away.
She also knew why she hadn't been allowed to go with the others. Being
so emotionally attached to Bobby would only be a liability if he was
being held hostage. She knew that the others would not stop searching
until they found Bobby and that if he was hurt, Jean would do all she
could to save him but all that knowledge didn't make the waiting any
She paced and waited and paced and waited. The Danger Room was just
down the hallway. She could always go in there and work off some of the
nervous energy but Scott had warned her and Bobby that they weren't to
go in there unless they had an adult with them.
She sat down on the cold tile floor and rested her head on her knees,
her gloved hands clenched in front of her. This wasn't like all the
other times when she had accidentally touched someone. Then, she could
console herself with the knowledge that it was a mistake and remember
not to do it again, she had no such knowledge this time. Bobby was
probably dead and she would never have a chance to say 'Good-bye'.
That time, the tears came before she could stop them.
Professor Xavier needn't have been a telepath to locate Rogue. All he
had to do was follow the sounds of her sobs. He rolled down the hallway
and stopped in front of her. He didn't like seeing his students in pain
but, with teenagers, pain was a part of every day life.
"Marie?" he asked, softly.
She looked up at Professor Xavier and tried to stop her tears but
couldn't. He took a handkerchief from his coat pocket and handed it to
her. She took it and dabbed at her eyes.
"I'm sorry I'm such a mess." she mumbled, looking down at the floor.
"Marie, there is a big difference between 'being a mess' and being
worried about someone." Professor Xavier said to her. "I worry about
all of my students all the time. Made all my hair fall out."
Rogue looked up at the Professor's joke and almost smiled. "Thank you,
Fifteen minutes later, the rumbling of the X-Jet's engines echoed
through the mostly empty lower hallways of the mansion. Rogue stood up
and looked toward the hanger doors expectantly. Professor Xavier,
having already sent a message to Jean about Rogue, waited next to her.
The hanger doors opened and Logan walked through alone, the doors
sliding shut behind him.
Rogue's eyes bounced from the grim look on Logan's face to the neutral
one on Professor Xavier's and new tears flowed down her cheeks. Logan
pulled her into his arms and started talking quietly to her, his body
blocking her view of the hanger doors. The doors opened again and
Professor Xavier watched Jean and Scott carry Bobby into the Med-Lab.
//How's Rogue?// Jean mentally asked Professor Xavier.
//She's quite unhappy. That was very wise to have Logan come out
first.// Professor Xavier replied.
//That was Logan's idea.// Jean replied. //He knew how upset she would
Professor Xavier looked up at Logan and nearly smiled. Despite his
claims to the contrary, Logan had a big heart and truly cared for
Rogue. He tried to do his best by her.
//When can Rogue see him?//
//Not for a couple of hours at least. I need to get his temperature
up. Seeing him like this would only upset her further.//
Professor Xavier cleared his throat and eyed Logan. Without a word,
Logan picked up on the Professor's train of thought.
"Rogue, darlin', I know you want to see Bobby right now but ..." Logan
"I'd just get in the way." Rogue said, her voice muffled by Logan's
bulk. She looked up at him. "I'm not stupid, Logan. I just want to know
if he's okay."
"He'll be fine." Logan told her, praying that he was right.
Due to the lateness of the hour, Jean was more than surprised to have
the doors of the Med-Lab open and admit twelve-year old Micah Winslow,
one of the newer students, dressed for bed. He paused in the doorway,
then walked very slowly into the room as if he expected to be chased
out at any minutes.
"Micah? Is there something wrong?" Jean asked him.
He jumped guiltily at the sound of her voice and turned to look at
her. "I came to see Bobby, Dr. Gray."
Jean stood and came around her desk to block Micah's view of Bobby.
"Bobby's asleep. You should be too."
Micah gnawed at his lower lip but did not speak. He had taken an
instant liking to Bobby, following the older boy around the school and
pestering him about anything. Bobby, amused by the attention and having
gone through hero worship once already with his younger brother, took
Micah under his wing, so to speak. Micah reveled in the attention and
had really started to come out of his shell. Now, it seemed as if he
was retreating back into himself, holding himself away from Bobby, to
protect himself from any pain that might happen if Bobby did not
Jean bent down in front of him and said "Micah, when you start dozing
in Ms. Munroe's class tomorrow, don't expect an excuse from me."
"Is he going to be okay?"
"He'll be fine. Now, you need to go back to bed before Logan wonders
where you've gone to."
"He's already checked on us, he won't be back for another 15 minutes."
Micah told her.
*Well, well, well. I'll have to let Logan know that the children are
paying more attention to him than he thinks.*
"Micah, you need to go back to bed. Now."
He looked down at the floor, turned and walked back toward the door.
He stopped and looked at Jean over his shoulder, looking like he wanted
to say something but couldn't. He left as quietly as he came.
Jean shook her head and rubbed her eyes. Most of the children came to
the school with such unbelievable baggage, abandonment, abuse,
homelessness and it was very hard to convince them that they were safe,
but Bobby had reached Micah and Micah just worshiped him for it.
She checked Bobby's vital signs and took his temperature again. 93.5,
up from 90.2 when he was found in the barn. "You hang in there." she
told him. "There are an awful lot of people out here pulling for you."
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