Disclaimers, etc. in part one.
Marie turned from the closed door to look upon the faces of her
friends and teammates. Finding the weary face of the team leader, she
asked, "How, Scott? How did it happen?"
Cyclops walked over, joining her at the door. He slouched against the
wall, the weight of command obviously pressing on him more than usual
today. He pursed his lips, and she could tell he was trying to decide
how much to tell her.
"I need to know, Scott," she said, trying to hold back the tears to
convince him she could handle it.
He sighed and began. "Magneto was trying to steal some plutonium. We
still don't know what he wanted with it, but we had to stop him.
"When we arrived at the installation, we ran into Sabretooth almost
immediately. Logan attacked, of course, yelling at us to go on
without him. He'd fought Sabretooth before, and we all figured he
could handle it, so we continued our search for the reactor,
splitting into three groups.
"My group found the reactor first. We also found Magneto. As we
entered the reactor room, St. John's flamethrower flew out of his
hands and my visor was yanked off. I was able to close my eyes in
time, but that took us out of the action.
"Jean called for backup, but the rest of the Brotherhood were keeping
our other teams busy. Jean tried to telekinetically freeze Magneto
while Jubilee fired her paffs, but even though he couldn't move, he
started willing metal pieces off the walls of the reactor room and
attacking us with them.
"The whirlwind of metal shards forced us back into another room, and
while we were pinned down, he started to shake the ceiling, trying to
bring it down on us. We were trapped, Rogue. Magneto wasn't playing
around. He was going to kill us.
"I don't know where Logan came from. He must've heard Jean's distress
call. Anyway, Magneto's attack suddenly stopped, and we made it out
of there right before the ceiling crashed down.
"When Jean gave me back my visor, I could see six metal points poking
from Magneto's chest. Logan sheathed his claws, allowing Magneto to
drop. It was obvious that the man was mortally wounded, but with the
last of his powers, he turned on Logan.
"It was so fast, Rogue. If I'd known what he was going to do, I
would've blasted him, but it was just too fast. One second, Logan's
walking towards us, the next he's writhing on the floor, metal and
blood pouring from his body. I fired at Magneto but it was already
"Logan doesn't have the adamantium anymore. Magneto ripped it out of
Scott bowed his head like a confessed sinner awaiting punishment.
Marie knew that he was waiting for her to say something, but she
couldn't, feeling the tears welling up. It was worse than she could
have possibly imagined. She knew the damage that Magneto's powers
could do. How could Logan possibly survive something like that?
Hours passed. A chair appeared and someone urged her to sit. A mop
and bucket were produced and someone cleaned the red-streaked floor
to a metal shine. People touched her shoulder, squeezed her hands,
whispered cliched expressions in sympathetic voices. Marie took
hardly any notice of it. Instead she focused on praying to whoever
was out there that Logan would be spared. She promised to give up
everything she had if only he was ok.
Three hours into the operation, Jean appeared, rushing out of the Med
Lab, tubing and IV equipment in hand. Silently, she looked at Kitty.
Kitty nodded and followed her into the map room.
Marie jumped from her chair, running after them, desperate to get any
news from Jean on Logan's condition, but the door was locked.
"What's going on?" she yelled at the barrier.
"Rogue," Scott's voice behind her, his hand on her shoulder turning
her around. "They're running out of Logan's blood type. Jean's taking
volunteers. Some of the students will be coming down soon, too."
"My blood..." she started.
"Isn't the right type."
Finally twelve hours after the surgery had begun, Dr. Jean Summers
emerged from the Med Lab, her surgical scrubs rumpled and bloody.
Marie immediately rose from her chair.
"He's still alive, Rogue, but he's badly injured. The next 24 hours
"I want to see him."
"We're not done bandaging him. Give us time to get him settled and
clean up, then..."
"I want to see him," Rogue interrupted, pushing past the exhausted
The smell of blood assaulted her senses as she entered the room.
Blood was puddled on the floor and bloody sponges and instruments
were strewn on the tables. Logan lay in the midst of the chaos,
wrapped like a mummy in white gauze, but at least he wasn't covered
in blood anymore.
Hank was bent over Logan's newly shaved head and face, starting to
bandage the stitched wounds revealed there. If Logan's head was any
indication, the damage wasn't as extensive as she'd initially
thought. The ugly wounds still covered a good portion of the surface,
but there were a several unaffected patches. The blood had lead her
to believe that his skin was so badly damaged it couldn't be stitched
Marie walked to the head of the table, watching Hank start his
bandaging, when she noticed something odd about Logan's appearance.
"Hank, why is the right side of Logan's face drooping like that?"
Jean came up behind her and started to explain. "He lost a lot of
blood, Rogue. We tried to stop it, and we were eventually successful,
but we had to give him a lot of transfusions. Part of Logan's healing
factor is in the platelets and white blood cells in his blood. The
new blood didn't have those special properties, and any healing he
had been doing stopped all together."
"Jean, that doesn't explain..." Marie started to say, but Jean held
up a hand and continued her speech.
"When the blood clotted, a clot broke off and was swept into his
blood stream. This clot..."
Exasperated and more and more anxious every second, Marie
interrupted. "Give me the Reader's Digest version."
Jean sighed and said. "He's had a stroke, Rogue... a pretty bad one."
See part three.