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REPOST Fic: Lapse of Reason 2/?

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  • teufelce@aol.com
    Title: Lapse of Reason (2/?) Author: Chris (teufelce@aol.com) Genre: Romance/Action/Character Study Rating: PG-13 so far,
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 2, 2001
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      Title: Lapse of Reason (2/?)
      Author: Chris (teufelce@...)
      Genre: Romance/Action/Character Study
      Rating: PG-13 so far, for profanity
      Pairing: Logan/Rogue
      Summary: Logan and Rogue try to deal with their developing feelings for
      one
      another, amidst sudden change
      Thanks to: Tracie, who has trusted me enough to let me develop her idea,
      and to
      Jo and Z, as always, they know why...
      Disclaimer: The characters of X-Men (i.e. Logan, Professor Xavier, etc.)
      belong to
      Marvel Comics and Twentieth Century Fox Pictures. This
      story is for
      entertainment purposes only and no copyright infringement
      is intended.
      Archive: Hell yes, just please let me know where.






      Almost as if she'd heard his thoughts, Marie made a soft noise in her throat
      and shifted in her sleep until her hooded head came to rest directly on
      Logan's shoulder. Every muscle in his body sang in sudden tension and only
      the aching pain in his lungs reminded him to keep breathing.

      <Jesus Christ, Marie, why'd you have to do that...> Just as he prepared to
      move himself even further into the corner of the back seat, to get away from
      the bittersweet feeling of the warm body curled up against him, he heard it.
      Heard her sigh softly, felt her cheeks lift in a sleepy smile, and then her
      breathing deepened and she was deep asleep again. While the instincts inside
      him, that had kept him sane and safe inside his aloofness screamed at him to
      move away from her, his heart ached with a feeling he didn't even want to
      identify. One he wasn't ready to just yet... <Well, she looks so tired> he
      thought to himself. <Guess it wouldn't hurt for a little while...> With a
      quick glance at the front seat, one that reassured him that both Jean and
      Scott were oblivious to the position he'd found himself in, he let his own
      head fall back against the head rest and closed his eyes. Let his mind
      drift, as all his senses reveled in the sound of Marie's slow, even
      breathing. Found his own eyes sliding shut and gave in to sleep...


      ~~~~~~~~~


      The cessation of movement and the sound of opening and closing car doors
      slowly roused Logan from sleep. As his mind struggled towards full
      consciousness, he was dimly aware of Marie moving away from him, of her soft
      drawl, "Logan, I'm gonna get out and stretch my legs while Scott helps that
      nice woman change her tire..." Change her tire? What the... The door opened
      and shut and Marie was gone into a swirl of frigid air. Air that brought
      with it a tantalizingly familiar scent... A minute passed, then Logan's eyes
      snapped wide open. Mystique... That shapeshifting bitch was so close, her
      scent was so strong, he could taste it on the roof of his mouth. And he was
      in the car. And the rest of the team was out there... *Marie* was out
      there... With a snarl of rage, he shot upright in the car and struggled with
      his locked door. Eyes darted to look out the frosted window, to see Scott,
      Jean and Marie standing on a small bridge. The bridge spanned a river whose
      currents moved so slowly that it was already covered in ice. They were all
      bending over next to what looked like a harmless elderly woman whose blue
      Ford had developed a flat tire. In the blink of an eye, the tableau changed.
      For a moment, Logan thought he was seeing things - something, no, *someone*
      was moving behind Scott. Someone who seemed to absorb the light and
      surrounding landscape, blending in like a chameleon until they moved.
      Colours shifted and shimmered and Logan had to fight to stay focused on the
      shape as he screamed out a warning, still struggling with the frozen door.

      "Cyke! Behind you!" His voice was muffled, but Scott heard him yelling and
      turned, a questioning look dying on his face as he laid eyes on the shifting
      form behind him. A blur of motion and Scott was sailing through the air to
      land against a tree with a sickening thud. Jean had turned at the same
      instant as her husband, and Mystique took that opportunity to grab the taller
      woman by the hair and slam her head first into the top of the car. A dazed,
      but still conscious Jean fell to the snow at the shapeshifter's feet, and a
      horrified Logan watched as both mutants turned on a terrified Marie. A
      terrified Marie, who despite ever urge to run, was pulling off her gloves
      with shaking hands... A roaring sound drowned out all thought as Logan's
      world turned red. He was dimly aware of the claws shooting out of his hands.
      Of those claws smashing through glass... Of glass cutting his hands, his
      chest, his legs, as he hurled himself through the broken window of the car.
      Rolled in the snow to land on his feet, arms flung wide, a snarl of rage on
      his face. Just in time to see the lightshow freak grab Marie around the
      neck... to see Marie's hands come up to grasp the other's face. Light like a
      small solar burst flared and Logan had to fling a hand over his eyes to keep
      from being blinded. As his vision returned, he saw a startled Marie
      stumbling backwards, legs tangling as they hit the low guardrail of the
      bridge. Watched as they both disappeared over the side...

      An anguished scream tore itself from his throat and he started to run for the
      side of the bridge. Only to realize at the last moment that he'd forgotten
      about Mystique, just as her foot slammed into the side of his head... He
      stumbled and fell to one knee, before shaking his head and spinning to face
      her. The bitch had shifted back to her normal form and amused yellow eyes
      stared back at him from five feet away.

      "Well, Prism may have failed to capture your little friend, but at least he
      took her with him. You know she'll never survive that river long, such a
      slight little thing..." Mystique's mouth lifted in a twisted smile. "Looks
      like you X-Men aren't invincible after all." Whatever Mystique saw in
      Logan's face, it drained the smile from her own. Fear replaced sick mirth in
      her eyes, and she began to back away. Scaled blue skin shifted and twisted
      until a large dog stood before Logan. One that quickly turned and sped off
      into the woods that bordered the road. A loud groan behind him, and Logan's
      eyes snapped around. Jean was helping an unsteady Scott to lean against the
      car. Both of them were bleeding steadily from head wounds, but they were
      alive. Marie... Only a few minutes could have passed since she'd gone over
      the side - there was still time. As Jean and Scott stared at him in shock,
      he pulled his jacket off and kicked off his boots.

      "Logan?" came Jean's shaky question.

      "Rogue - she went over the side into the river..." he managed to growl out,
      just as he dove off the bridge. The icy water hit him like a brick. Burning
      cold threatened to steal the air from his lungs, the warmth from his flesh,
      and only concentrated effort kept him from struggling for the surface. Eyes
      darted back and forth, trying desperately to make out something in the murky
      water. Hands searched from side to side blindly... There... a brush of
      fabric... God help him if it's that freak... He grabbed hold and pulled the
      limp figure closer to him, as he kicked for the surface. Lungs sucked in air
      as he broke through the ice again, a motionless Rogue clutched to his chest.
      Oh god, he thought as he stared down at a slack face. Oh god...

      "Logan!" He twisted in the water to see Jean standing on the bank of the
      river, a rope in hand. Kicked out with powerful legs to propel them both
      towards where the rope lay on the surface of the ice. Grabbed it with numb
      fingers and struggled to wrap it around his wrist, while his other arm held
      onto Marie with a death's grip. The moment he had the rope securely around
      his arm, Jean began to pull. He could see her eyes closing in concentration,
      past a grimace of pain, and he knew she was using her telekinesis to help
      her. They hit the edge of the ice and he managed to lift Marie's frozen body
      up onto the stronger surface, before scrabbling for purchase himself.
      Keeping them both flat against the ice, to spread their weight out over the
      greatest surface area, he let Jean reel them in and just concentrated on
      holding on to Marie. Trying desperately not to think about the possibility
      that this could all be in vain...


      Jean grabbed hold of his sodden shirt once they were close enough, and
      managed to get both of them on the shore. As Logan lay in the snow,
      shivering and gasping for air, he watched Jean bend quickly to lay a gloved
      hand against Marie's neck. Watched as she bent her ear close to Marie's
      lips. Saw her give a small sigh when a slight puff of air issued from those
      lungs. Then watched as those tiny puffs of air grew fainter, shallower,
      further apart... Jean bent over Marie, frantically checking her pulse again,
      pulling back an eyelid. He watched Jean climb to her feet and face him with
      tear filled eyes.

      "Logan... I'm sorry... the hypothermia's too far gone... there's nothing we
      can do..." No. No....

      "No...." It came out as an agonized moan, and he struggled to his knees,
      dragging himself to Marie's side. The tears in Jean's eyes spilled over, as
      Logan's hand wrapped around Marie's covered wrist and looked up at her with
      eyes filled with such horrible pain. "No, there has to be *something*,
      Jeannie... Please..."

      "Logan, we have no way of getting her body temperature up quickly enough.
      Not without risking...." Jean's trembling voice broke off as a fire began to
      burn in Logan's eyes.

      "Risking what, Jean?" Gone was the nickname, replaced by a fierceness that
      made her shiver.

      "Body-to-body contact is the only thing we could do, Logan, and with Rogue...
      it's just not possible." The growl that rumbled up from the depths of
      Logan's chest forced Jean to take a step back.

      "Fuck 'possible', Jean - you mean you're not 'willing' to risk it. For all
      you people's endless rantings about helping one another, you're still not
      willing to do whatever it takes to help her. Well, I am," he snarled. "*I*
      am." He turned his eyes back to the motionless figure laying before him.
      Prepared himself to make the ultimate sacrifice - one life for another.
      Looking down at her, there was no question. His life was nothing, hers was
      everything. Whispered under his breath, "Forgive me, darling, but it was the
      only way..." He began to pull her shirt out from the waist of her pants and
      heard Jean gasp behind him as she realized what he was going to do.

      "Logan!" she shouted, starting forward only to be stopped by the tips of
      three razor sharp metal claws.

      "No, Jean. Don't stop me." Then the shirt was free from her pants and Logan
      was sliding it up, over her chest, until the length of her abdomen was bare
      to the cold air. Raised shaking hands to pull his own shirt over his head,
      and then bent until his face was a hair's breadth from Marie's. "Forgive
      me..." Her lips were cold beneath his, and he could feel his heart
      threatening to shatter into pieces. He leaned in until his body was covering
      hers, the fabric of her bra tickling his chest as he ran his hands briskly up
      and down her sides. Trying in vain to transfer some of the returning heat of
      his body to hers. Feeling tears spilling unheeded down his cheeks as the
      pulling sensation that heralded her gift failed to kick in. No... no....
      no... Pressed his cheek to hers, letting the tears run down into her hair,
      wishing to god he'd never left her. Wishing that he'd told her about how
      he'd felt... An almost unnoticeable puff of warm air washed over his cheek
      and he froze all movement. There was no pull coming from her, no drain of
      his energy, but yet she was alive. How the hell...

      "Logan.... what... what are you... oh my god!" Then he was being shoved
      aside by frantic hands. Small hands that pushed him away to roll into the
      snow, a crazed laugh breaking the silence as he felt a smile split his face.
      He righted himself to find Marie sitting upright, staring at him with wide
      eyes.

      "Welcome back, darling..." She shook her head frantically, staring at her
      hands held out between them.

      "I felt you... I felt you holding me... but... I didn't... I didn't drain
      you....how... I don't understand..." The more she spoke, the greater the
      panic in her eyes and Logan felt his chest tightening again. Before he could
      speak, Jean stepped in.

      "Logan, let me. Rogue, do you remember what happened?" Jean said softly, as
      she crouched before the terror stricken girl. Marie stared up at her.

      "I remember the other.. mutant. He grabbed me... The only thing I could
      think of was to grab him back... Then there was light and pain, and then we
      were falling into water... and it was cold. So very, very cold. That's all
      I remember..." Logan watched in silence, as Jean slowly leaned forward to
      take Marie's hand in hers. Marie froze and stared down at Jean's bare skin
      where it touched hers. Her eyes widened as, once again, her mutation failed
      to kick in. Jean nodded, as if confirming something to herself, and then
      shrugged out of her jacket, placing it gently around Marie's shaking
      shoulders. Then she stood and turned to face a dumbfounded Logan.

      "I left Scott up near the car - he's suffered a nasty head injury and there's
      no way we're driving anywhere. I had him call the Professor while I was
      pulling you and Rogue from the river. He's sending Storm to pick us up with
      the jet. She should be here soon." She stopped and looked back at where
      Marie still sat in the snow, eyes wide. "As for what's happened with Rogue's
      mutation, I'll know more once we get back to the school and I can examine her
      in the medlab." Logan swallowed and managed to find his voice past the lump
      in his throat.

      "But she can touch..." Jean stared at him with unreadable eyes before
      replying.

      "Yes, she can. But we don't know how, or for how long, Logan. We still need
      to be careful. Will you be able to help her up to the car? I want to get
      back and make sure Scott's alright."

      "Sure." Jean nodded again, and then she'd left the two of them alone.
      Painfully aware of the sharp cold that was penetrating down to his bones,
      Logan managed to unbend stiffened muscles and climbed to his feet. Moved
      slowly over to a Marie who looked like she was ready to run at any moment,
      and offered his hand. "Come on, Marie, we gotta get up to the cars." Marie
      stared at his hand for a long minute before finally slipping her own into it.
      Logan felt all of his breath leave his lungs in response to the sensation of
      her soft skin sliding over his roughened palm. Fought to keep his face
      neutral as he lifted her to her feet. The moment she was standing, Marie
      snatched her hand from his as if she'd been burned and his happiness
      instantly turned to confusion. It was almost as if she were afraid to touch
      him. Despite knowing that her mutation was, at least temporarily, out of
      order, she was terrified to touch him. He could smell her fear on the air
      and something else, something not so easily identifiable... She brushed
      quickly past him and was climbing up the slight hill to the road before he
      was even aware of it. He shook his head and followed slowly after her. He
      couldn't understand it. He would've thought she'd be *happy* to be able to
      touch, to be touched, like everyone else. He would never have predicted
      this... this blind panic he'd seen on her face. Mind preoccupied with a
      whirlwind of confusion and emotions, he barely even registered the cold ice
      and stones cutting into his bare feet as he climbed towards the car. He
      would've thought she'd be happy, damn it...

      End of Chapter 2
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