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FIC: For Better, For Worse 7/7

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  • rimmette@earthlink.net
    Disclaimers, etc in part one. ***** Marie sluggishly shifted her numb arms so they were underneath her body, ready to push up and attack if those people got
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 28, 2001
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      Disclaimers, etc in part one.

      *****

      Marie sluggishly shifted her numb arms so they were underneath her
      body, ready to push up and attack if those people got too close. As
      it turned out, her preparations weren't necessary.

      "They're close, Scott. I can sense them," a familiar voice said.
      Jean's voice.

      "Rogue!... Logan!" That was Scott, calling out to them.

      "Mmmm, hhere," Marie called weakly. It came out little louder than a
      whisper, but from the shuffling sounds of boots running over loose
      soil and the approaching voices, she knew they had heard her.

      She heard a gasp, and then she felt gentle hands rolling her onto her
      back. Cracking her eyes open, she saw Jean's worried face
      illuminated in the moonlight.

      "What happened?"

      "Lo-gnn, druuggd," she slurred. She felt like her brain was floating
      in molasses. Everything was so slow, so far removed.

      She watched Jean move to kneel between her and Logan, so she could
      check his shivering body as well.

      "Rogue, this is important. Are you cold?"

      That seemed like a stupid question. However, when she thought about
      it, she realized that although she had been cold, freezing in fact,
      now that bitter pain was gone, replaced by a mildly unpleasant heat.

      "Nno... tirrrd."

      "Rogue, stay awake," Jean demanded, fear entering her voice. "Scott,
      grab Logan. 'Ro, help me with Rogue. We've got to get them back to
      the jet now."

      Marie floated in and out of consciousness. She watched the scenes
      take place before her like a video tape being fast-forwarded and
      stopped at random spots with white static in between.

      A grunt. "How can he even walk with all this extra weight? The metal
      must add about a hundred pounds."

      "It's distributed over his skeleton, and he's had almost twenty years
      to get used to it. Scott, have you got him?"

      Another grunt. "Yeah."

      <i>Fast forward...</i>

      Someone was shaking her.

      "Rogue, open your eyes. Come on," Jean ordered.

      When Marie complied, she saw the desert illuminated by flames. The
      complex was burning. She'd done it. She'd sent those monsters
      straight to hell. They'd never hurt another mutant again. Logan
      could finally put his past behind him. As they skirted the flames,
      she could see the Blackbird come into view.

      <i>Fast forward...</i>

      A vile odor with a tinge of ammonia assaulted her, forcing her eyes
      to pop open. Jean was holding a small vial up to her face, running
      it back and forth in front of her nose. The roar of jet engines
      filled the small space, and she realized she was in the Blackbird's
      small medical unit.

      "Rogue, I know you're tired, but you need to stay awake."

      "Lo-gnn?" she asked.

      "He's still unconscious. I won't know until I can run some tests,
      but he'll probably be ok. It's you who has me worried."

      "Mmm, fine."

      "No you're not... Rogue?... Rogue?"

      <i>Fast forward...</i>

      She could hear the engines shutting down, but she was no longer in
      the plane. She was being carried and then, gently laid on a
      stretcher.

      "Henry, thank God. Oxygen, CO-2 mix. Warm saline I.V."

      "Epinephrine?"

      "Yes."

      Marie felt a prick in her arm and then an almost painful warmth
      spread through her veins. The hands left her body and she
      heard, "Logan?"

      "Same treatment," Jean responded. "I'm taking her down."

      "I'll follow shortly."

      <i>Fast forward...</i>

      "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. If I'd just been paying attention..."
      Jubilee paused for a moment to calm herself. "Rogue? Can you hear
      me? I just wanted you to know that Remy and I, we didn't... I mean,
      if we'd known what was happening... As soon as Jean said you hadn't
      called for a few days, well we knew something was wrong. The
      professor was in Cerebro almost non-stop for a week before he found
      you, something about not being able to detect people underground, in
      caves, that sort of thing. If only Remy hadn't bumped that phone...
      We're just so sorry."

      "Jubilation Lee," a deep, husky voice called. Hank's voice. "This
      area is restricted until the patients are sufficiently recovered."

      "Yeah, I just had to tell 'er somethin', Hankmeister. I'm gone, now."

      <i>Fast forward...</i>

      A warm hand was caressing her cheek ever so softly, the leather so
      smooth on her skin. She didn't want to wake up. She wanted to stay
      in the comforting darkness she had finally found, but the stroking
      brought her slowly back to wakefulness. Blinking her eyes open,
      Marie focused on the man standing above her.

      "Hey, darlin'. How're you feelin'?" Logan was smiling down at her,
      looking hale and healthy.

      "Mmm, better."

      "Good. You had us worried for a while."

      "How're you?" She couldn't help the worry from creeping into her
      voice.

      "Fine, darlin'. Good as new."

      "I... I..." the emotions she'd held back for so long came rushing
      out in unstoppable, choking sobs.

      "Hey... Hey there..." Logan said, pulling her shaking body up into a
      sitting position so he could wrap his arms around her. She buried
      her face in his chest and cried all the harder. "It's ok," he said
      trying to comfort her. "We're both ok."

      Through wracking sobs she let everything out, telling him all her
      worries and fears those days he'd been gone, and how afraid she'd
      been for him. She told him about her parents and Sabretooth and the
      police station. She told him about John and Derek and what Project X
      had almost forced her to do to him. She didn't keep anything back,
      and when she was done, she held onto him tightly and cried until her
      tears ran dry.

      "Better, darlin'?"

      "Yeah," Marie replied, pulling away to wipe at her eyes.

      "Good. I'm just gonna go kill Remy and Jubes. I'll be back in a
      bit."

      Tightening her grip around his waist, she pulled him back to her
      body. "They didn't know, Logan. It's not their fault."

      "It is their fault. If they hadn't been fooling around, you wouldn't
      have had to go through most of that."

      "It was an accident, Logan. They didn't mean it. It's ok."

      "It's *not* ok," he growled.

      "Then it'll be ok," Marie countered. Then, after a moment's
      pause, "Logan, can we do something? I mean, in a few days, can we go
      somewhere?"

      "Anywhere."

      -----

      "I don't like this, Marie."

      "I know. If it helps, I don't like being here either."

      "We're too exposed."

      "Professor Xavier said that the charges were dropped. We're not
      wanted anymore."

      "Yeah, but still, to come back here so soon."

      Marie opened the passenger-side door and stepped into the chilly
      air. It had rained the day before, and the grassy field was still
      damp and shining in the sunlight.

      "This is something I have to do, Logan. Will you come with me?"

      Logan exited the Jeep in response, stepping beside her and placing a
      comforting hand around her waist. "Where are they?"

      "Somewhere over here," Marie said, beginning to walk.

      After searching for a few minutes, she finally found them. In Loving
      Memory: George Michael Trent and Rachel Anna Trent.

      Kneeling down on the wet grass before the graves, she said, "Hi,
      Momma. Hi, Daddy. I'm sorry I didn't come sooner, and I'm sorry I
      left four years ago without telling you. I was just so afraid, and I
      didn't want to risk hurting you. I came because I wanted you to know
      that I'm ok now. You don't have to worry about me anymore."

      Reaching up, she grabbed Logan's free hand. "This is Logan."

      She paused like she was waiting for something. Finally, he
      said, "Uh, hi."

      "Logan's my husband. He's a good man. I think you'd like him
      Momma. I love him so much, and yes, Daddy, he loves me just as
      much. We're good together, and I so wanted you to meet him. We
      missed you at the wedding, but maybe you were there, huh? Maybe you
      could see it? I hope so.

      "I just wanted to come and see you, and say, 'Thank you.' I hope if
      I'm ever a parent that I can be half as good to my kids as you were
      to me. Your love and support meant everything to me... I just
      wanted you to know."

      Marie kneeled in silence for a few minutes and then slowly rose to
      her feet.

      "Ready, darlin'?" Logan asked, reaching out a hand.

      In the past few weeks, they had both lost all connections to their
      past. Now, they only had the unknown future stretching out before
      them. Taking his hand, she knew that they would face that future
      together, for better and for worse.

      *****

      Next: For Richer, For Poorer.
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