FIC: Child's Play (2/3) Logan/Rogue, PG-13
- disclaimer, etc. in part 1
If I thought Marie was acting a little strange before we got to the
carnival, after we got there her behavior became downright alarming. As we
waited in line to buy all-access passes for the rides, she constantly
scanned the fairgrounds, obviously looking for someone. But when I asked
her, she said she was just looking around.
Then, she started messing with her hair, combing it out with her fingers.
"Logan, how do I look?" she asked.
"Uh ... you look like Marie," I said, confused. My Marie never spent much
time worrying about what she looked like. It was a little unnecessary,
anyway, since she was drop-dead gorgeous all the time. And that day was no
She should've been burning up in long pants and gloves, but she looked as
cool as Ororo in a thunderstorm. Khaki cargo pants covered her long legs,
and a deep blue tank top could be seen through her sheer blue, long-sleeved
shirt. She should've looked out of place among the carnival-goers, but she
looked perfect to me.
"You're a big help," she muttered and went back to scanning the crowd.
I was getting a very bad feeling. It wasn't helped by the way she took a
deep breath and started smiling in that way that's supposed to only be for
me. It took a moment to see who she was smiling at, but when I finally
caught sight of the guy, I couldn't stop a growl.
Marie didn't even notice, but the kids started laughing.
Marie's practically drooling over this tall, blond, athletic, Greek-god
lookin' guy coming toward us with his own group of kids. I found myself
praying that all four of those kids were his, that his wife was bringing up
the rear of their group.
I used to be a lucky guy. Not this time.
"Rogue!" the guy started grinning, and my knuckles itched. "You made it!"
"Well, I couldn't miss this," she drawled, and I swear to God she batted her
damn eyelashes at the guy.
Pretty boy smiled even more. "Mind if we hang out with you guys for a
Yes. Hell, yes. I mind a lot, actually.
"Of course not!" Marie gushed. "Oh! Um, Richard, this is my ... friend
Logan. Logan, this is Richard Masterson. He works at the county's orphanage,
and these are some of the kids."
"Hey, Dick," I said.
"It's Richard," he corrected me, frowning.
I shrugged, ignoring Marie's dirty look.
Dick introduced the kids, but the names didn't register with me. We finally
bought our ride passes, little plastic bracelets we had to wear.
Bracelets. Do I seem like a bracelet kind of guy to you?
Dick said we had to ride the ferris wheel first, and Marie told him what a
great idea that was. I rolled my eyes at her enthusiasm. It's not like he
discovered the Law of Gravity or anything.
I just knew what Pretty Boy had planned, but if anyone was gonna ride Marie
... um, I mean, ride the ferris wheel *with* Marie, it was gonna be me. But
before I could say a word, disaster struck.
"Dibs on riding with Logan!" Caroline shouted.
Marie laughed, and all the kids started arguing about who would get to ride
the ferris wheel with me. Meanwhile, Pretty Boy made his move. Or he tried
to. Obviously, I wasn't the only one who didn't like Dick too much.
"Miss Rogue," Chad said, glaring at the man. "Ride with me, please?"
Damn, I like that kid.
Dick looked like he wanted to argue, but Marie smiled at Chad. "I'd love to,
sweetie," she said.
Score one for our team.
Unfortunately, like I said, my luck was a little off that day. Caroline won
the battle to sit with me. We'd barely gotten seated before she started.
"Do you want to do it with Miss Rogue?"
"You know, sex. Do you want to have sex with her?"
"You shouldn't go pokin' around in people's heads, kid. Especially mine."
"But you do want to have sex with her?"
Damn. She was persistent. And we appeared to be stuck at the top of the
ferris wheel. I could hear some kid crying below, afraid to get on the
thing. Great. Just great. I'd love to be up here with Marie, but instead I'm
stuck with Dr. Ruth Jr. "That's none of your business," I told her.
"I just don't understand," she said as if I hadn't just told her to mind her
own business. "Why would you be naked on a pool table? Why not just use a
Marie was going to kill me, but I couldn't resist. "Boys will have sex on
any available surface, Caroline. We're not picky."
She wrinkled her nose at me and twisted a blond curl around her finger. I
wondered if she picked that particular mannerism up from Marie. "Oh. Well,
are you going to marry her?"
I looked at the ground again. The kid was still screaming and refusing to
get on the ride. Why the hell didn't his mother just take him to a different
ride? Like, now?
"No, I'm not going to marry her," I said finally.
Caroline gasped. "You're gonna have sex with her and you won't marry her?"
"I'm not gonna have sex with her," I explained. I couldn't believe I was
having this conversation with a little kid. "And it's not that I wouldn't
marry her. She doesn't love me. Didn't you just see her making googly eyes
at that bast-- um, that guy down there?"
"But you love her?"
Shit, the kid wouldn't quit. And I didn't have an answer to that question. I
mean, of course I cared about her. And I was attracted to her. And, somehow,
the thought of spending the rest of my life with one woman had a certain
appeal, if the woman were Marie.
"Yeah," I said, surprising myself. "Yeah, I love her."
As fate would have it, the ferris wheel started up just then. Caroline was
biting her lip. "We have to get rid of Dick," she said suddenly.
My thoughts exactly. But it wasn't right to get the kid involved in this.
"You're not gonna do anything, OK?"
Caroline suddenly smiled as the ferris wheel turned a little faster.
"Whooooo! This is fun!"
I didn't notice at the time, but she never answered my question.
When we got back down on the ground, Caroline gave me a quick hug before
running over to the rest of the kids. Marie and Dick were talking, heads
close together. I felt another growl coming on.
Marie broke away from him and came toward me. "Logan, I need a big favor,"
she said. Normally, I'd do anything for her, but I had a bad feeling about
"What is it?"
"Well, Richard and I were thinking of taking the older kids to ride some of
the bigger rides, and I thought maybe you could watch the twins for a few
Madeline cheered and ran over to me, hugging my leg. "Yay! Mr. Logan!" Sam
immediately started crying again. We were gonna have to work on that.
"How few minutes?" I growled. I didn't like the thought of Marie spending
time with Pretty Boy any more than I liked the idea of baby-sitting the
"Forty-five minutes, tops," Marie said, giving me the puppy dog eyes.
Madeline squeezed my leg and turned her dark eyes on me, too.
Sam cried some more.
"No more than 45 minutes," I said. She of all people should know better than
to leave me alone with children for any length of time.
"You're the best," she said, giving me a quick hug. "We'll meet back here in
If I was the best, why was she running off with that other guy?
Before they left, Caroline came over to me. She motioned for me to bend
down, so I disengaged Madeline from my leg and squatted slightly. "What is
"Don't worry about Dick," she whispered. "We're gonna take care of
Before I could respond to that frightening statement, she rushed off. David
and Chad looked back at me, flashing grins and thumbs-up at me.
Oh, shit. Marie was *so* gonna kill me.
I turned back to the twins. Madeline was leaning on me, and Sam was still
"Sam, c'mere," I said. "I'm not gonna hurt you."
He cried harder.
"Look, you gotta cut that out."
"He's a big baby," Madeline said loudly. "He cries all the time."
"Am not!" Sam screeched, crying some more.
"Sam --" I reached for him, but he darted away from me. "Hey, um, are you
hungry? They got all kinds of junk food here."
The boy stopped and stared up at me with wide eyes. "Miss Rogue said we
can't have anything 'less she said it's OK."
"Well, she left you with me, right?" The boy nodded. "So, I guess I can
decide what you can have."
The tears stopped as suddenly as they'd begun. "Hot dog," he said.
I sniffed the air, and took the kids' hands. "This way."
"Can you smell them?" Madeline asked.
"Cool," Sam said.
Heh. This baby-sitting stuff was a snap.
Forty-five minutes later, I realized what a damn fool I was.
And if I hadn't realized on my own, Marie was certainly not shy in pointing
it out to me. "What did you do to him?" she demanded.
I glanced down at little Sam, who seemed fine. Great, in fact, for someone
who had been throwing up the entire contents of his stomach a few minutes
"We had some snacks," I said.
"Well, Sam wanted a hot dog."
"You can't just let a kid have whatever he wants," Marie said.
I don't see why not; it's his stomach lining. But I didn't tell Marie that.
Things had been fine while we ate hot dogs. Minus the little incident where
Maddy dumped an ice-cold lemonade in my lap, of course.
But Madeline hadn't wanted a hot dog. She wanted ice cream. So, I got her an
ice cream cone. Then Sam started to cry, and I had to buy him one, too, just
to shut him up. It went downhill from there.
"What else?" Marie asked, and let me tell you, she sounded pissed. That
wasn't like her at all; she tended to be more amused by crap like this.
"Um. Ice cream. Some cotton candy. Uh ... part of a funnel cake."
"Logan! God! I should've known better than to trust you to take care of
them." Marie picked Sam up. "Let's get you cleaned up, honey," she told him.
I don't know why she was cleaning *him* up. I was the one with lemonade and
regurgitated junk food all over me.
"Watch the kids," she ordered. "Don't feed them."
I was pissed. It wasn't like I asked to take care of the brats. She'd dumped
them on me so she could run off with Dick. And her attitude was a little
uncalled for. I'd have some things to say to her once we got rid of the
As soon as she left, Caroline came over. "You won't believe it," she said.
For the first time, I realized that Dick was nowhere to be found. "What did
you do?" I asked suspiciously. Perhaps this was the reason Marie was in such
a nasty mood.
"We didn't have to do anything," Caroline said. "He did it himself."
"Well, we walked by these two boys from school, and one of them has fur all
over his body. And I heard ... I didn't look in his head, but he was loud.
... Dick thought 'mutie freak' when he saw him." Caroline sounded a little
"Hey, kid, it's OK." I put an arm around her, and it didn't feel as awkward
as I thought it would. "There's lotsa people like that out there. You can't
let it bug you."
"Yeah, but he was drooling all over Miss Rogue." She wrinkled her nose
again. "I knew she'd be mad if she knew he had thoughts like that. So ..."
"What did you do?" I asked again.
"I asked him what he thought about the Mutant Registration Act," she said.
Uh-oh. Caroline might be young, but she had quite a brain on her. "What did
"You know," she said. "Mutants can't be allowed to take over the world, the
government should keep track of them because they're so dangerous ... stuff
I pondered what kind of moron the guy had to be to not know that Marie was a
mutant. It made me feel a little better. Obviously, nothing had happened
between the two of them, or he would've known about her skin. But did the
dumbass think she wore long sleeves and gloves in the summer as a fashion
"Miss Rogue got really mad, and she called him ... something bad," Caroline
said. "I think she's sad, though. I didn't mean to make her sad."
"Yeah, me neither," I said.
"I bet you could cheer her up," Caroline said. "If you told her you loved
"No." Not a good idea.
"Come on," Caroline said. "We could ride the ferris wheel again, and you
could tell her when you get to the top."
"You watch too much TV, kid," I told her. "Forget it."
"You could buy her some flowers," Chad chimed in.
How did this get to be a group discussion?
Maddy jumped up and down. "Play a game!" she said. "Win a teddy bear!"
"No," I said. "Damn it, no."
"Pleeeeeeeease?" I'm not sure which one started it, but all the kids took up
the chant. "Puh-leeze! Puh-leeze! Puh-leeze!"
"I'll think about it," I said, just to get them to shut up.
"Think about what?" Marie asked from behind me. She sounded a little more
"We wanna go in the haunted house," Caroline said. Damn, that girl is quick.
She was a future X-Woman for sure.
"I don't know," Marie said. "It might be scary."
"We're not scared," David said. "Pleeeeeeease?"
Obviously, it worked on Marie, too.
"OK," she laughed. "I don't know about the twins, though."
"I'll go if Mr. Logan will carry me," Maddy said.
"Yeah, OK," I agreed, earning me smiles from both Maddy and Marie.
"I'm sorry I yelled at you," Marie said. "I was just mad and taking it out
"It's nothin', darlin'," I said.
She smiled at me again, and the whole ferris wheel idea seemed a lot more
attractive. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Caroline, Chad and David --
the three stooges -- giving me a thumbs-up.
"You go get cleaned up," Marie said. "Meet us in line, OK?"
Because I was facing that way, I saw Caroline nudge Maddy. "Miss Rogue?" the
little girl said. "Um, aren't you going to help him get cleaned up, too? You
I couldn't help it. I laughed as Marie blushed. A blush had to be a good
sign, right? "Yeah, Miss Rogue," I said softly. "I could use some help with
She blushed even brighter and swatted my arm. "You're a big boy, Logan. I
think you can handle it."
Yeah, but I'd like it better if you handled it. Oops, did I think that too
loud? I glanced at Caroline, but she was whispering with the other two
I was too afraid to even ponder what they were planning next.