FIC: Child's Play (3/3) Logan/Rogue, PG-13
- disclaimer, etc., in part 1
We had to wait in line half an hour to be "scared" by the canned horror
music, fake skeletons, unidentifiable glow-in-the-dark objects and jerks
dressed up in bad Halloween costumes. At least it was air conditioned.
Maddy, however, clung to me like a leech, screaming at the top of her lungs
every time someone jumped out at us. Approximately every two seconds. Right
into my ear. My hearing would never be the same.
And I started to get a little offended, too. I guess I was sorta pouting,
because Marie cornered me a few minutes later while the kids had a bathroom
"Are you still mad at me?" she asked. "I didn't mean to yell at you."
"Yeah, I know," I said. "Caroline told me what that bastard said. I'm not
mad at you."
She frowned at the mention of Dick but kept to the subject. "Are you OK? You
seem ... upset."
I looked toward the restrooms, but the kids were still inside. "I'm not
upset. I just ... am I losing my touch?"
"Your ... touch?"
"Yeah. You know, I used to be this badass guy. When you first met me. Now
... Maddy was more scared of a plastic skeleton than she was of me. I mean,
I growl! I've got metal claws! Why am I not scary?"
"Um," Marie bit her lip, but a giggle escaped anyway. "You're upset because
Maddy wasn't scared of you?"
I glared at her. Since I was apparently no scarier than a puppy dog, that
didn't faze her a bit.
"Oh, Logan, you are a total badass," she said, laughing some more. "It's
just ... you make us feel safe is all. You're strong and brave, and you take
good care of me ..."
She was looking into my eyes and smiling that special Marie smile I loved so
much, and blushing a little bit again. "Not that I need anyone to take care
of me," she said quickly. "But when I do ... I know you're there."
"Marie," I said seriously. "I --"
"Miss Rogue!" Sam yelled. "Can we play games?"
Marie and I jumped. She looked a little flustered and started playing with
her hair, her gaze darting between me and the boy. "Um, sure, Sam. That
We headed toward the games, and the three stooges surrounded me. "That guy
over there sells tissue paper flowers," Caroline said. "They're pretty."
"Butt out," I told them. But I couldn't help but notice the paper flowers
were kind of pretty, especially the purple one about the size of my fist.
Purple was Marie's favorite color.
I glanced at Marie, but she and the twins weren't paying any attention to
us, so I quickly shelled out the cash -- 5 bucks for a paper flower! -- and
held the flower behind my back. We caught up to the three of them beside a
"A lovely flower for a lovely lady," I said, giving it to her with a
Hey, I can be smooth when I put my mind to it.
"Logan, that's so sweet," she said, pecking me on the cheek. It was so quick
and light her skin didn't have time to react, but my body certainly had a
I couldn't help it; I was kinda getting into the spirit. I flashed the
stooges a thumbs-up.
We wandered through the games, letting the kids play and win all kinds of
worthless crap that yours truly had to carry around. But Marie kept giving
me the sweet smile, and all was right with the world.
I ignored Madeline's unsubtle gestures toward the stuffed animal prizes.
Marie didn't need a damn teddy bear or stuffed bunny rabbit, and I sure as
hell wasn't going to play any of the games. They were all rigged, anyway.
And then I saw them.
Really nice looking scarves in bright colors, hanging along a clothesline at
the back of one of the booths. Now that was something Marie could really
"Hey, Marie," I said casually. "You want one of those scarves?"
She looked to where I was pointing and smiled. "They're beautiful," she
said. "But you don't have to --"
"Hey, you think I can't win it for you?" I was kind of insulted.
"Um, no ... It's just, you know --" she stuttered.
"I got it," I told her. "Come on, kids." I led the whole group over to
witness my triumph. Or, basically, I needed an audience to watch me make an
ass of myself.
It was a pitching game. You just threw a ball at a tower of six milk
bottles, and if you knocked all of them down, you won the prize. Simple,
Did I mention all these games are rigged?
So, the first time I threw the ball, it missed. OK, maybe the first couple
of times. I was just getting warmed up.
Anyway, that's not the point. The point is, the third time, I hit the
bottles as hard as I could. Which is pretty damn hard, I'll have you know.
Two of the bottles fell down.
I glared at the man running the booth. He looked like a weasel, tall and
thin with a smarmy grin. The guy had the nerve to shrug and grin at me.
"Maybe next time," he said.
"Maybe now," I growled, and Marie started to look worried.
"Logan, it's not that big a deal," she said.
"I said I'm winning you a scarf, and that's what I'm gonna do."
The kids started cheering behind me, and I handed Weasel Guy some more cash
for three more chances.
This time, I hit the bull's-eye every single time. No more than three
bottles fell. I turned my glare back on Weasel Guy, who just shrugged again.
"I think this thing's rigged," I said loudly. Weasel Guy started looking
"No way, man," he said. "You're crazy."
"Logan," Marie said softly. "I've got lots of scarves. Let's go."
"We're not leaving until Weasel Boy admits his game is rigged and plays
fair," I said, remarkably calmly. I didn't want to scare the kids, after
all. But I shouldn't have worried about that.
"Mr. Logan," Caroline said sweetly. "You're not gonna throw him through a
window like you did the last guy, are you?"
Did I mention how much I like that kid?
"Yeah," Chad said. "Then we'll get kicked out of the carnival."
"And there'll be blood everywhere," David added.
"Well, kids," I said. "That depends on Weasel here."
It wasn't that hard of a choice. Almost imperceptibly, Weasel's hand
twitched, flipping a small switch. He was either un-rigging the game or
Either way, I'd have some fun.
Weasel handed me three balls. "Maybe you want to try again?" he asked. When
I glared at him, he continued. "F-f-for free?"
I grinned. Marie was right. I'm still a badass.
I knocked them all down on the first throw. In fact, I knocked down the
pyramid next to it, too. "Not rigged, eh?" I said as the kids jumped up and
down and cheered "Lo-gan! Lo-gan! Lo-gan!" It kind of had a ring to it.
"Er ... Would the lady like to pick out a scarf?"
Marie was busy trying to look disapproving, but there was a grin just
begging to come out. She pointed at a sheer scarf of blue swirls. As we
walked away from the booth, she tied it around her neck.
"Thanks, Logan," she said, giggling. "My hero."
I liked the sound of that.
"You're welcome," I told her. "And thank the kids. They were excellent
We spent the rest of the day at the fair, and I hate to admit it, but I
actually had a good time. The kids were kind of growing on me, and I'd take
all the time I could get with Marie, even if it meant riding cheesy carnival
rides and eating crappy food.
As the sun started to set, Marie looked at her watch. "We've got to be
getting back," she said. All the kids protested, but even I could see they
were all pretty well beat. I'd been carrying Maddy for the past 45 minutes,
and Marie had Sam in her arms. The three stooges stumbled along, leaning on
Caroline looked back at us. "We've got to ride the ferris wheel again before
we leave," she said, giving me a significant look. I glared back at her.
Sure, I could go for the flower idea. I'd even gone along with humiliating
myself by playing carnival games. But there was no way I was going to tell
Marie my feelings on a damn ferris wheel.
She ignored me, of course. "Miss Rogue, why don't you and Mr. Logan ride
together? The twins and I can fit in one seat, and the boys will ride
Marie agreed, and Caroline -- who has a brilliant future as a military
strategist -- maneuvered it so we had to get on first. I had an inkling of
what she was up to, so I wasn't too surprised when we got stuck at the top.
I knew Marie couldn't hear anything, but I could hear Sam crying and
throwing a fit and refusing to get on the ride, no doubt prompted by
I knew they'd be at it for a while down there, so I settled back and looked
at Marie. She was smiling at the sunset. "It's so beautiful," she said.
"We've got the best view in town."
I thought I was the one with the best view ... of her beauty, but I didn't
say so. I mean, I am the Wolverine. But still, I figured I'd be a damn fool
to pass up an opportunity like this.
"Marie," I said. "Um ... Sam's throwing a fit down there." Now *that* wasn't
what I meant to say.
"What?" Marie craned her neck and looked at the ground. I followed her gaze.
Sam was putting on quite a show.
"Oh, Logan, we've got to get them to let us down there."
"Nah," I said, gulping. OK, I admit it. I was a little scared. "They're
doin' it on purpose."
"Caroline thought if I could get you alone up here, with the beautiful view
... and it's all romantic and shit ... and I could tell you how I --" I
cleared my throat. "How I feel about you."
"How you ... feel?" Marie was looking a little stunned. I couldn't decide if
that was a good sign or not.
"I mean, I know you kind of liked Di-- Richard," I said. "But I ... I'm
sorry he was such an asshole." Liar.
"I didn't ..." Marie looked understandably confused. I wasn't doing a great
job of making my point. "I was just flattered. He ... It's just nice to be
"*I* want you," I said. Now there was something I was very comfortable
saying. But it wasn't enough. I thought if I just said it fast enough, I
could get through it. "I love you, Marie."
"I ... you ... Logan?" Marie looked a little dazed. "I thought you thought
... I mean, I thought I was just a kid you promised to take care of."
"Sure," I said. "When you *were* a kid. Things have changed. I love you."
Hey, it was easier the second time.
"Oh, Logan." Shit, she was going to cry. That was bad.
"Marie, baby, don't cry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. Forget I said anything. Don't
"Logan, I love you, too," she said, sniffing. "I never thought you'd feel
that way about me, and I tried to move on, but I really couldn't."
"Thank God," I said. "I know I don't deserve you--"
Marie put a gloved finger over my lips. "We deserve each other," she said,
tugging the scarf off her neck. "I've always wanted to be kissed on a ferris
What can I say? Her wish is my command.
I'm a damn lucky man. I know that. As Marie and I made good use of her new
scarf on the top of that ferris wheel, I mentally sent out a thanks to
Caroline. I owed that brat big time. I was going to buy her ... well,
whatever she wanted. Whatever girls her age wanted, which was pretty much
beyond me. Hell, I owed all the kids big time.
Sure, the day had turned out better than I ever could have dreamed, but that
didn't let Summers off the hook. I couldn't let him get away with playing me
like that. I'd have to think of a suitable revenge.
Maybe I'd ask Caroline for a little help.