The Dangers I Had Passd (Whats Past is Prologue
RoseAnn Mendez had been looking forward to Professor
Xaviers death, hoping it would happen soon. It
certainly wasnt something shed say to anyone at
Xaviers Academy. It was something she barely
acknowledged to herself. Still, it was true.
She felt like a real bitch for thinking that. And she
sure tried hard *not* to think it when she was working
with the Professor on Cerebro. It had been bad enough
when theyd been working for hours and getting nowhere
and shed thought to herself This is so fucking
boring I could die.
No one ever died of boredom, RoseAnn, hed said in
that calm, even way of his, as if shed said it to him
out loud. Sometimes we wish we could, hed added
with a smile. Shed tried to keep better control on
her thoughts when she was with him after that. When
he told her that he was trying to stay alive until
this mission was finished, she didnt let herself
think Well, I hope we finish soon, then. That
night, in her bed, though, she not only thought it but
imagined herself saying it to him.
Yeah, it was a bitchy thing to think, but she couldnt
help it. Shed never really liked him, never
understood why everybody here seemed so crazy about
him. He was just using them all, she was sure.
Trying to use her, from that first night when he and
Mr. Summers had picked her up. Some day I may want
you to use your powers, hed told her in the car,
before theyd even gotten to the school. And he could
barely wait a day before he was trying to make her use
them. If not for Mr. Summers, he wouldnt have backed
off and given her time to even know that she could
control it. She was sure of that.
But then, later on, when Mr. Summers and Dr. Grey had
asked her to work with the Professor to reconstruct
Cerebro, shed agreed gladly. They explained that
Professor Xavier was very sick and that nobody but him
could operate it the way it was now. Its really
important that I be able to use Cerebro, too, Dr.
Grey had said. My powers arent as strong as his
and... well, the one time I tried I had problems.
Its an essential tool for us, you know. Its how we
found you. We need to reconstruct it while Professor
X is well enough to work on it. Youre the only one
who can work with him. And we dont know how much
time hes got. Her voice cracked at the last part
and Mr. Summers had put his arm around her shoulders,
protectively. RoseAnn had sat there, embarrassed,
while Dr. Grey cried.
We dont want to push you, RoseAnn, Mr. Summers had
added. Were just not sure how long we have.
So shed agreed right away. She wanted to do anything
she could to help the X-Men, and she sure wanted to do
anything Mr. Summers asked her to. Hed seemed so
happy when shed told him yes and he wasnt seeming
happy very often lately. So, she was glad shed told
Mr. Summers and Dr. Grey that shed help the Professor
with Cerebro. Glad until she actually started doing
Reconstructing Cerebro was the kind of project that
was both hard and boring. RoseAnn didnt mind hard if
something was interesting. Thats why she had had
such a good time in Mr. Summerss Shakespeare seminar.
Well, that and how pleased hed been with her work.
Also talking with Jamie about the seminar. That was
fun. So, yeah, sometimes reading the plays and the
essays about them just made her head hurt while she
tried to figure out what they meant, but when she did
get it, she felt it was worth all the effort.
She also didnt mind boring if something was easy.
She could and did often spend hours doing car
repairs that were dull as could be. Didnt bother her
one bit. She could think about whatever she wanted
while she did them, and when she was done, well there
was that feeling. You could look at a car that
everybody thought would never run right and know *you*
fixed it, using nothing but your hands and a few tools
and just the knack to know what to do. Plus there was
Mr. Summers shaking his head in wonder and saying that
it was ridiculous that a girl who could fix anything
wrong with a car wasnt allowed to drive one just
because of her age.
But boring and hard? Thats what she just couldnt
abide. Using her mutant power was still so difficult
that she ached all over every time she did it. And
Professor X needed her to do it for so long and so
often. She dreaded that knock on her dorm door or
just on her mind, saying that it was time to come back
to the big round room for another session. It was
mind-numbingly boring, holding pieces of metal
together with her brain, in an endless variety of
configurations she didnt even understand, going on
for hours at a time. Maybe it could have been a
little bit fun if you could think about other stuff
while youre doing it, but it took pretty much all of
her concentration. And maybe it wouldnt have been so
bad if she were doing it with somebody she liked.
Her discomfort in the professors presence made the
whole thing even harder. So, who could blame her for
wanting this to be over?
Wanting the Cerebro reconstruction mission over was
one thing, but wanting the Professor dead was
something else. She knew it was a horrible thing to
wish for, but more and more she found herself wishing
for just that. They were just kind of sitting around
waiting for it to happen, all the X-Men, she could
tell. It made them distracted and short-tempered.
Mr. Summers barely had time for her. Shed wanted to
talk to him about Jamie, but he was always so short
with her she never did. And Dr. Grey had been
occupied with her wedding, and then she was just
worrying all the time about the Professor, too, it
seemed. Neither of them was paying any attention to
RoseAnn. So, although she was careful not to let on
either by words or conscious thoughts during the
day, sometimes at night shed lie in her bed and
think, When hes gone everything will be back to
normal around here.
Only then he did die and she found out she was wrong.
Nothing got back to normal. If anything, it was
worse. Everyone was just unhappy all the time. The
teachers were just going through the motions in class.
Everybody had said that summer term at Xaviers was
fun rules not so strict, classes as much for
entertainment as learning. But thats not what it was
like this summer. RoseAnn thought the kids who had
somewhere to go until September were the lucky ones.
People teachers and kids were crying right in the
middle of stuff. And it seemed like kids were getting
into fights all the time, too, and none of the
teachers had the patience to deal with that. Or with
kids out after curfew or any of the other stuff that
they used to just take in their stride. They were all
yelling at the kids at the smallest things, losing
their tempers over stuff that would have made for a
mild rebuke a couple of months ago.
Mr. Summers wasnt one to lose his temper, at least
not with the kids, but he was so busy all the time.
All the other kids said that hed be naming Ms. Monroe
as the new Field Leader soon, but it hadnt happened
yet. Cyclops was still Field Leader and Mr. Summers
was headmaster now, too. And he was planning a
memorial service for Professor X and spending time
with all sorts of people who came to see him after the
Professors death, some of them Very Important,
judging by their cars and their entourages. RoseAnn
missed him. Plus she wanted to talk to him about
Jamie, about her and Jamie.
She stopped by his office often, but he never seemed
to be alone, and she didnt really want to make an
appointment. He had cancelled all advisement sessions
for the summer, and although he said he was happy to
schedule additional meetings with any of the students,
she wasnt sure he meant it. She even tried looking
for him in his bedroom one evening, although shed
agreed months ago not to do that anymore. But she
just wanted to talk to him when he was alone. Only he
wasnt alone. She could hear his voice and Logans
from behind the closed door. She didnt catch the
words but the tone made it clear that Mr. Summers did
lose his temper sometimes, with some people.
RoseAnn missed Dr. Grey, too. Shed liked talking to
her Mr. Summers was right. She was the kind you
could tell things to, and when hed been in
Washington, RoseAnn had confided in her. But since
the Professors death Dr. Grey wasnt around much.
RoseAnn looked for her in the dining hall, but she was
missing meals more often than not. And whenever
RoseAnn did see her it was when she was with Mr.
Cherevko. Well, that was nothing new, and before it
had never stopped RoseAnn from asking to talk to her
alone. It hadnt stopped Dr. Grey from kissing Mr.
Cherevko and saying Ill catch up with you later,
love and ushering RoseAnn off for a chat. But now
that they were *married* RoseAnn didnt feel like she
could interrupt them like that. And with red eyes and
a miserable look on her face all the time, Dr. Grey
didnt look like she felt like chatting, anyway.
So, RoseAnn didnt feel like she had anybody to talk
to about what was happening with Jamie. They were
officially boyfriend and girlfriend now sat together
in the dining hall, did their homework sitting in the
library at the same table, walked hand in hand in the
halls. Kids talked about them as Jamie-and-RoseAnn
just like they said Ruby-and-Max.
Mostly it was wonderful. Shed never really had a
boyfriend except Nick, and it was great to have a
boyfriend who was, well, a boy. A high school kid
like her. Yeah, she felt more like she really was a
high school kid now. Youd think the classes and the
homework and the dorms would do it, but there was
something about having a real live boyfriend, to do
homework with and go to the movies with and IM from
your dorm to his, that made it seem all the more real.
RoseAnn loved talking to Jamie. They talked about
school and about being mutants and about what they
wanted to do when they grew up. And hed never tried
to do anything more than kiss her, which was just fine
with her. Holding hands all the time, sitting
together on the couch in the common room watching TV,
a sweet goodnight kiss that all made the whole
normal high school kid thing seem even more real. It
helped with the verisimilitude, as Mr. Summers would
And RoseAnn loved Jamies wings. She was fascinated
by them, thought they were the most beautiful thing
shed ever seen, loved to touch them and look at them,
even before shed seen them in action. When she saw
what he looked like flying, she knew she was in love.
All her life shed dreamed of being able to fly. She
almost felt like she was right there with Jamie when
he rose into the air and swooped and soared.
She had been shocked when he told her about his
parents having them cut off, and what they did when
that didnt work. Im so lucky, hed said.
Lucky? Lucky that they did that to you? Its
I meant lucky that they grew back, and that they
still work. But, yeah, I guess in some ways its
lucky they did that. If they hadnt I wouldnt have
come here. Professor X went to court to make sure
they could never take me back, you know. He was my
foster father. I think if he lived he would have
adopted me, like he did Mr. Summers...
Do you think *hell* adopt you?
I dont know. But I can stay here as long as I want,
that I know.
Yeah, thats what they tell me, too.
I want to stay here as long as you do, hed said,
looking serious as could be. RoseAnn smiled at him.
But the more Jamie told her about his past the more
she worried about what to say about her own. She felt
bad not to tell him, but she didnt want him to know.
She wanted to just be that high school kid she was
pretending to be, not a washed up whore trying for a
new life. Could you become the person you wanted to
be if you tried hard enough, pretended hard enough?
RoseAnn hoped so. Shed told Dr. Grey about feeling
like an imposter at school, had said it was like a new
version of the old Gidget movies Gidget Goes to
Mutant High. But more and more, as time went on, she
wanted that to be her life. She wanted to be Gidget.
A mutant Gidget with a flying Moondoggie.
Would you like to fly with me? Jamie asked her one
Saturday morning, as they were hanging out on the
Really? How could I do that?
Id hold onto you. Warren does it all the time. He
said Mr. Summers was the first person he flew with,
when they were kids here. Do you want to see what it
Hed told her to stand still and then hed come up
behind her and wrapped his arms around her, being oh
so careful not to touch her breasts. Jamie was funny
that way. But then hed gotten hard, all pressed
against her like that, and let go, red-faced and not
looking at her. Im sorry, hed managed to say,
just barely. I cant help it.
I dont mind. Please, cant you take me anyway? I
just want to know what its like.
And he had overcome his embarrassment enough to fly
with her - arms around her waist, legs wrapped around
hers although she could feel him hard against her
the whole time. It was truly like a dream come true,
like she really was flying. Rising into the air she
felt a thrill and a sense of recognition it was
exactly like her dreams. The school looked so
different from the air, a completely different angle
on everything. And the air blowing by them was
exhilarating. It was so exciting, such pure joy that
it didnt even occur to her to be scared of falling
until after theyd landed.
Feet on the ground now, alone in the enclosed garden,
RoseAnn had turned around and hugged Jamie. That was
wonderful! shed exclaimed, and kissed him.
You liked it?
I loved it! I want to do something for you, too,
shed said. And dropped to her knees without even
thinking about whether or not this was a good idea.
RoseAnn had managed to find Scott alone in his office
the next day, surprisingly so. Do you have a minute,
Mr. Summers? shed asked.
Just about, hed answered. Ive got someone coming
for a meeting in a few minutes, but come on in. Whats
Shed been excited to find him alone and now she
didnt know what to say. Shed fumbled a bit. Do
you know about me and Jamie? shed managed finally.
Yes, of course. Im sorry, I havent been so
involved in the school as usual, but some couples are
hard to miss. He smiled almost like he used to.
Ive been glad to see you two getting close. Two
He took me flying yesterday!
Scott beamed. I have a friend with wings. Angel
Mr. Worthington. He flies with me sometimes.
I know. Jamie told me.
When we were kids and he took me flying for the first
time well I thought it was the best thing that had
ever happened to me.
They smiled in mutual understanding. Then RoseAnn
scowled. Its great with Jamie. Its just that...
well, I dont know what to say to him. About, you
know. Hes so good to me and he tells me everything.
But I worry that he wouldnt like me anymore if he
knew. Do you know what I mean?
Scott sighed deeply. Yeah, I know. I dont know
what to tell you, RoseAnn. Jamies a great kid,
but... I dont know. Maybe its better not to say
anything. He was looking distracted again,
retreating into himself. I never told anyone, when I
was a kid, he added.
Mr. Summers? Do you mean that you...?
But then there was a knock on the office door and Mr.
Summers called Come in. Adam Greenfield entered
and Mr. Summers started to introduce him to RoseAnn.
We know each other. We met at the wedding, Mr.
Greenfield said. Nice to see you again, RoseAnn.
Lets catch up later, Mr. Summers had said to her
and shed left.
What we did yesterday...
You dont mean flying, do you?
You liked it, didnt you? He just about melted
looking at her face. That worried expression, her
mouth in a slight pout. Her mouth. Remembering it on
him yesterday made him lose his concentration for a
Of course I liked it. I... I... Ive never felt
anything like that. Its just...you did that before,
didnt you? She nodded, frowning. Is he someone
The guy you sucked off! He looked down. Im
sorry. I didnt mean it to sound like that. Were you
going out with someone at Xaviers, before me? Thats
all I meant.
No. Ive had lunch with a couple of the guys from
the Car Club. Played pool with some of them. That
kind of thing. Joe kissed me once, but I told him I
wasnt interested in dating. She touched his arm.
Thats all. Since Ive been here. Youre the first
boy Ive been interested in. Really.
So it was somebody from your old school? RoseAnn
nodded, wondering what she was getting herself into.
Does he know youre a mutant, your old boyfriend?
No. He doesnt know anything. Not where I am or
what happened. I just left.
How did you find Xaviers?
They found me. Professor X found me on Cerebro. He
and Mr. Summers came and got me.
Do your parents know youre here?
She shook her head. They dont care. They didnt
want me around anyway.
You think he wouldnt like you anymore if he knew?
Your old boyfriend.
Probably not. He didnt like mutants.
Do you still like him?
Not the way I like you.
Jamie didnt say anything for a long time. Did you
have sex with him? I mean, not like we did. Did you
go all the way?
RoseAnn took a deep breath. No, she said, finally.
He wanted to, but I was scared of getting pregnant.
We just did... what I did with you. And some other
Whats his name?
Mofic Website: www.angelfire.com/comics/mo
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