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Fic: Alter-Eighteen: The Inescapable X: 3/3: NC-17 [L/R]

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  • victoria p.
    Disclaimers etc. in part 1 *** indicates thoughts ~ ~ indicates telepathic conversation // // indicates dreams *** Logan left Rogue alone, hoping he d
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 3, 2001
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      Disclaimers etc. in part 1


      < > indicates thoughts
      ~ ~ indicates telepathic conversation
      // // indicates dreams


      Logan left Rogue alone, hoping he'd figure out the right words to say to

      When he finally did try to speak with her, a couple of hours after
      dinner, she stomped out of the rec room and slammed the door to her
      bedroom in his face. Then she refused to come out.

      He settled down on the floor once again, resigning himself to spending
      the night there, on the off-chance she'd change her mind. He fidgeted a
      little with the gloves he wore, then decided keeping them on was safer
      than having to fumble for them if he needed them later.

      He contented himself with listening to her as she puttered around the
      room. As it grew later, he fought off the images of her nude body laid
      out before him, his hands caressing that pale, deadly flesh until she
      writhed in pleasure, moaning his name.

      He shifted uncomfortably, his jeans a little tighter than they'd been a
      few minutes before, as he heard the shower running. The Wolverine inside
      wanted to bust down the door and join her, but he had control of
      himself. Nevertheless, he relaxed a little when the shower stopped.

      When the light under the door went off, he allowed himself to fall into
      a light doze, confident that he would wake immediately if she needed


      Rogue knew she was being childish, proving everything Jean had said
      about her, but *God*, how could she help it? He'd rejected her so
      completely after she'd thrown herself at him.

      She knew it wasn't a game; she even knew he had no desire to hurt her,
      but still, her heart -- and, if she was honest with herself, her pride –
      had suffered a major blow.

      She sat at the desk -- the bed held too-vivid memories of last night's
      humiliation -- and read for a while, trying to get jump on studying for

      Sometimes she had to laugh at the absurdity of her life -- studying art
      by day and making the world safe for mutantkind at night. Add in
      life-sucking skin, a taciturn man with razor-sharp, nine-inch metal
      claws, and an unrequited crush, and even she couldn't take it seriously.

      She tried to lose herself in her history notes, but reading about
      immigrant life in America in the early part of the twentieth century
      inevitably led to discussion of Ellis Island, which just brought back
      memories of her near-death experience at the Statue of Liberty.

      Yet another absurdity, that the beacon of hope and freedom symbolized
      nothing but hatred and death to her. She couldn't hate Magneto, because
      she knew what he'd been through, but she couldn't forgive him for taking
      her innocence and trust in the human race with a single touch.

      It had taken her months to recover. Jean hadn't been sure she'd ever
      regain her full strength, and they'd called Hank back from Berkeley to
      consult. With careful nursing, over an eight-month convalescence, she'd
      done it. Gotten better. Gotten stronger. She'd survived Magneto trying
      to kill her body, and she would survive Logan crushing her heart.

      She wished she could go back in time -- she would have declined the
      mission. It was unusual, but not unheard of, and, with her position as
      Scott's pet, she'd have gotten away with it. Then she never would have
      shared those heated looks with Logan, never have jumped in to defend him
      (another thing that made her laugh mirthlessly -- as if he'd needed her
      help), and never been shown so clearly how undesirable she was.

      She felt unreasoning panic sweep through her at the memory of Sabretooth
      ripping her guts out, and realized that she would never be free of
      Logan. His thoughts and feelings colored her memories of the incident;
      he was part of her now and no amount of wishing would change that.

      Sighing, she looked at the clock. Too early for bed. She decided on a
      relaxing shower, inhaling the lemon-scented shower gel eagerly.

      She was aware of Logan sitting outside her door. That knowledge sent
      warmth flooding into her chest, and other parts of her anatomy, but she
      knew it was simply his desire to protect here. He'd somehow conflated
      her with Jean's baby, and refused to be helpless again in the face of
      death. That urge had been what moved him to touch her, heal her, even
      though he had no idea what it could have cost him.

      She slipped into a light cotton nightie that covered her from neck to
      toe, slid in between the sheets, and turned off the light.

      Breathing deeply, as Xavier had taught her, she brought her unruly
      thoughts under control and eventually fell asleep.


      // She was strapped down, helpless, her body submerged in cold liquid.

      She heard the laser before she saw it -- a low, buzzing sound that would
      forever instill fear in her whenever she heard the hum of an appliance
      in the middle of the night.

      And then they were cutting her, laying bare the bones that formed her
      skeleton. They poured the red hot metal into the incisions. It hissed as
      it hit the cold water. Steam rose, wreathing the doctors in fine mist.
      It set fire to every nerve and sinew; there was no escape from the pain.

      She couldn't breathe enough to scream, couldn't close her eyes. All she
      could do was burn in her own private hell.

      She heard them laughing, proud of the abomination they were
      witnessing -- the twisting of a human body into a machine built to kill.
      The scent of her own blood filled her nose, and she vowed that one day,
      it would be theirs. She'd bathe in it, revel in it, drink it in her cup
      of revenge. //

      Logan moved from sleep to waking instantly, aware of every sound along
      the dark corridor.

      He heard Marie grunting wordlessly in her sleep.

      <I hope she's dreaming of me.>

      He'd barely formed the thought when her cries became words.

      "No, no, no!"

      With a vicious kick, he opened the door and grabbed her by the
      shoulders, stilling her thrashing body.

      "Marie. Marie, baby, wake up," he commanded, his voice thick with fear.
      "It's just a nightmare."

      Another gentle shake and she let out a roar, her eyes snapping open and
      darting wildly around the room. She struggled in his embrace as he
      pulled her gently to his chest, stroking her hair.

      "Hush, baby. I'm here now," he murmured.

      "Logan?" She was still panting and shaking in fear; the stink of it
      almost overwhelmed the warm, sleepy scent of her.

      "Yeah, it's me," he reassured her, slipping into the bed beside her. "It
      was just a nightmare."

      She snuggled into him, crying, seeking comfort. He could smell the salt
      of her tears, feel their dampness seeping into his shirt.

      "It was so real... What they did to you..." she sobbed. "How can people
      be such monsters?"

      That plaintive cry struck at his heart. She'd had one of his
      nightmares -- even in trying to heal her he'd fucked up.

      "They're just evil, Marie. They've got nothing to do with you, though.
      They're not gonna get you. It was just a nightmare. Let it go."

      She raised her eyes, glimmering with tears, to his. "I could feel the
      pain -- God, Logan, how did you live through that?"

      "That's what we do, darlin'. We survive. We endure." His voice was firm,
      calm. He brushed the tears from her face with his leather-clad thumbs,
      wishing he could kiss them away.

      One touch led to another, and he couldn't stop. He was addicted to the
      feel of her beneath the leather of his gloves. It wasn't everything he
      wished for, but it was close enough.

      The touches quickly changed from comforting to sensual. His breathing
      became ragged, his control tenuous, as his hands stroked her shoulders
      and hips, skating lightly over the sides of her breasts as he hoped she
      wouldn't stop him.

      Her hands -- bare, delicate, yet strong -- roamed over his body,
      learning the feel of him through his flannel and jeans. He thought he
      might come just from touching her.

      He rained kisses on her hair, then pulled the cotton of her nightgown up
      over her lips to finally taste her as he'd dreamt of since the first
      moment he'd laid eyes on her.

      It was a little odd at first, the feel of her lips through the thin
      cotton lawn, but the mingling of their breath soon dampened the cloth,
      allowing him to almost forget they weren't skin to skin.

      He closed his eyes, willing himself to keep control. He nipped lightly
      at her full lower lip, and when she gasped, slid his tongue into her

      She tasted of sleep and something sweeter than the finest honey.

      At first, she was tentative, but she grew bolder as the kiss deepened,
      their tongues tangling almost desperately, each trying to drink their
      fill of the other.

      She ran her hands through his hair, memorizing the shape of his skull as
      he slid his hands down her back, cupping her ass and bringing her body
      flush against his. She gasped at the feel of his erection pressing
      against her thigh. Her hands came up between them and pushed him away.

      It took him a moment to regain enough breath to speak.

      "What -- What's wrong, Marie?"

      "Did you love Jean?" she asked, her voice soft, still carrying a hint of
      Mississippi, which drove him wild with desire.

      "Love? I don't know. I thought I did. I know lust -- passion. I wanted
      her, and she wanted me."

      Rogue wouldn't meet his eyes. "I don't know anything about those
      things." Her voice was a whisper and she creased and uncreased the
      sheet, her hands giving away her anxiety, even if her scent and her
      voice hadn't.

      "Look, darlin', you don't have any reason to be nervous. I'm not -- I'm
      not looking to take advantage of you," he said, and he knew it was a
      lie. If he wasn't going to take advantage of her innocence, he'd have
      gotten up and left before things had gone this far.

      But need -- something with which he was as familiar as lust and
      passion -- moved him, and he couldn't leave this girl alone. It was
      instinctual, primal -- the beast in him insisted Marie was his, and he
      no longer had the strength to fight it.

      "I know that," she said, her voice still barely audible. "But, but --
      what if Jean's right? What if this *thing* between us is nothing more
      than some trick of my mutation? What if I've somehow done something to
      you, and your feelings aren't real, either?"

      He blinked. This was over his head. Like everything since he'd met this
      girl. He tightened his arms around her.

      "Darlin', since I laid eyes on you in that bar, I've wanted to do this.
      It has nothing to do with your mutation on my end. If you think *your*
      feelings aren't real --" he broke off and swallowed hard at that
      thought, which sent a chill of real fear down his spine. "If you want to
      wait, I'm all right with that. I understand. This, this is some heavy
      shit between us, and--"

      She placed a finger over his lips, lightning-fast, stilling the flow of

      "Just hold me for now."

      He sighed in relief. It wasn't enough -- not by a long shot, but it was
      a hell of a lot better than nothing.

      "Whatever you want, Marie."

      He pressed her head to his chest and rested his chin on it, stroking her
      back gently.


      Rogue woke to the sound of a heart beating under her ear. From the even
      rise and fall of Logan's chest, she figured he was still asleep. She
      thought she would feel awkward -- maybe embarrassed, maybe dirty -- by
      what had happened between them last night, but it just felt *right*. She
      was comfortable, and she could tell he was, though if the bulge pressing
      insistently against her thigh was anything to go by, he wouldn't be when
      he woke up.

      But maybe she could do something about that.

      Reaching down, she began stroking him through the denim of his jeans.

      That woke him pretty quickly.

      He growled sleepily, like a bear waking from a long winter's
      hibernation, and raised an eyebrow at her look of concentration.


      "Morning, sugar."

      "You don't have to -- last night, I meant what I said. I don't want you
      doin' anything you're not comfortable with."

      She rubbed harder, earning a groan. God, he was going to come in his
      pants if she didn't stop it.

      "I know, Logan. But I've been thinking about it, and I *want* to do this
      for you -- with you. I want to touch you and I want you to touch me, if
      you still want to."

      He sucked in a deep breath at her words. "You sure, baby?" She nodded,
      her eyes wide. He could smell her arousal, tinged with a slight hint of
      apprehension. "Put your gloves on."

      She took a pair of velvet gloves off the night table and turned toward
      him, her hand already reaching down to unzip his pants.

      "Whoa, darlin', we don't have to go so fast. I want you to be

      She blushed. "I thought -- the memories I have from you--"

      He winced. He hadn't always been the most considerate lover, generally
      being a fan of the quick and dirty fuck. "I don't want it to be like
      that for you, Marie. I want it to be the best thing you've ever felt."

      She leaned her elbows on his chest and ran one fingertip down his nose.
      "It already is, Logan."

      He growled again, the Wolverine fully awakened to the fact that his mate
      was ready and willing and in his arms. He rolled them over so he was on
      top, and began pressing gentle kisses to her neck through her hair.

      He reveled in the feel of her lithe body beneath him, his hands cupping
      her breasts, thumbs circling over her nipples. She gasped at the bolt of
      electricity that shot to her core. Her own hands had never produced
      quite that sensation.

      His lips slid along her collarbone; occasionally he nipped her lightly
      through the cotton and then laved the sting away with his tongue. She
      continued her exploration of him, her small hands eagerly touching him,
      gliding under his shirt to stroke his chest and stomach.

      He sat back on his haunches for a moment, trapping her beneath him as he
      pulled his shirt off, heedless of the buttons that went flying

      She licked her lips at the sculpted perfection of him and he grinned
      ferally. He took her hand and placed it over his heart -- she could feel
      its wild beating against her palm.

      "You do this to me, Marie."

      She grinned back, awed and humbled by her power over him. "I can't
      believe this is real," she whispered.

      He ran a finger over her full lips, closing his eyes and letting desire
      wash over him as she flicked the leather with her tongue, then drew it
      into her mouth. "Me, neither," he said. "I keep thinking I'm going to
      wake up and this will all be a beautiful dream." She pinched him
      playfully and he jumped. "Ow."

      "I guess you're awake," she giggled.

      "I've got a better way of proving it," he said.

      "Ooh, is that a threat?"

      "A promise, darlin'. I need to kiss you now." She pulled the cotton
      nightgown over her lips and he moistened it with his tongue. A vague
      memory of chocolate-covered cotton flashed through his brain, only to be
      drowned amidst the sensation of his tongue being sucked into her mouth.
      His hips jerked against her and she let her legs fall over so he could
      move between them.

      Her hands stroked through his hair, down his back, stopping to squeeze
      his ass. "You have the cutest butt."

      He snorted, and she kissed him again. Her hands on his ass reminded
      him -- he had a condom in his wallet, and he was sure they'd need it
      soon. Without breaking their kiss, he maneuvered the wallet out of his
      pocket and managed to get the foil-wrapped packet into his hand. The
      wallet fell to the floor, unnoticed. He put the condom on the

      Rogue thrust her tongue into his mouth, learning the taste of him. She
      moved her hands around to the front of his jeans, eagerly tracing the
      treasure trail of dark hair that disappeared into his waistband.

      She was fascinated by the way his muscles jumped and tensed when she
      touched him, and highly gratified by his gasp of pleasure when she undid
      his jeans and ran one gloved hand over his hard cock, the tip already
      glistening with a pearl of pre-come.


      "Tell me what to do, sugar. I've never done this before."

      "Stroke me," he replied hoarsely, gritting his teeth to keep his hips
      from bucking as she did what he told her.

      He was too close. His hand gripped hers, moved it off his penis. "Did I
      do it wrong?" she said, and he cursed himself as an unfeeling bastard at
      the quaver in her voice.

      "No, baby, you were doing it perfect -- exactly right. I just -- I wanna
      make it last. I want to be inside you when I come."

      Her eyes widened and her lips formed an 'O'. He ran the back of his hand
      down her cheekbone and she took it and stroked the spaces between his
      knuckles. With his other hand, he caressed her hip, squeezing lightly,
      his lips falling to engulf one of her taut nipples.

      "Oh! Logan," she gasped, instinctively arching into him. He licked and
      sucked at her through the cotton before moving to the other breast.
      Meanwhile, the hand on her hip slid between her legs, pushing the
      material of the nightgown out of the way.

      "Do you trust me, Marie?" His voice was strangely intent.

      She answered without hesitation, "Always." And then heard the sound of a
      claw being extended so he could cut a slit in her underwear.

      He didn't think it was possible to be any more aroused, but the scent of
      her washing over him made his cock ache even more.

      He stroked her gently, marveling at how wet she was for him. She made
      small noises in the back of her throat as he circled her clit with his
      thumb and gently delved first one finger and then two into her tight,
      hot passage.

      Knowing that he was the first man to do this to her gave him a heady
      feeling. A rush of possessiveness flooded him, and he buried his face
      between her legs, flicking his tongue -- lightning-quick, so her skin
      couldn't react -- over her mound.

      "Oh, oh, oh! Logan!" she cried, and he felt her muscles ripple, pulling
      his fingers deeper into her.

      As she was coming down from her climax, he found the condom and rolled
      it on, positioning himself at her entrance.

      "Just relax, Marie," he said, pushing her damp hair of her forehead and
      whispering in her ear. He pushed her feet up the bed so her knees were
      bent and she was spread open for him. "We're gonna do this slow."

      He kept his eyes locked on hers as he eased himself into her, ignoring
      the animal instinct that made him want to thrust hard and fast, marking
      her as his forever. But she was already tensing, nervous even after her
      orgasm and he didn't want to cause her any pain if he could avoid it. He
      pushed through her hymen and she gasped and bit her lip.


      His body was slicked with sweat and she could see the tension in his
      arms as he held himself so very still, not resting his weight on her,
      trying to make her comfortable.

      "I'm fine," she said with a smile that seemed only a little forced. "I
      just -- it was a pinch. I wasn't really expecting--" she shifted her
      hips and he groaned. "I'm okay now, Logan. I want you to do it. Please."
      She raised her hands to stroke his face gently, then slid them down his
      back to grab his ass again. "Please," she said again, and this time,
      there was no pain, just wonder in her voice and her eyes, as she got
      used to the feel of him inside her.

      He began moving slowly, just rocking back and forth at first. "God,
      you're so beautiful, Marie. So tight and hot," he muttered in her ear.
      "I want you so much."

      She hadn't expected him to be talkative during sex. Even he was
      surprised at how differently he was going about this whole experience.
      He couldn't remember ever being somebody's first, and it seemed very
      important that he do it right, make it good for her, and not just
      because he loved her, but because everyone deserves that, at least.

      She was soon moving in time with him, her legs wrapped around his
      jeans-clad thighs, her hands trying to push him in deeper.

      She arched her body, clamping her inner muscles around him, and Logan
      lost control. Everything he'd kept bottled up inside -- all the feelings
      he couldn't believe he was having toward this delicate, untouchable
      girl -- just poured out of him as he pounded his body into hers. He
      couldn't tell where she ended and he began as he roared and spasmed,
      feeling the orgasm begin at the base of his spine and radiate throughout
      his body.

      When he came down, he buried his face in her hair, inhaling their
      combined scent. He nipped lightly at her neck, leaving a mark -- she was
      his now, and he wanted everybody to know it.

      "I love you, Logan," she whispered, stroking his hair and cradling his
      body with her own.

      He realized that he hadn't heard or felt her come and he flushed with
      embarrassment. He'd behaved like an inexperienced teenager, or a selfish

      "I love you, too, Marie, and I promise, it's gonna be better next time.
      I just -- I got a little carried away." He was already hard again, just
      at the thought, and he realized he needed to remove the condom before it
      broke or leaked.

      He cleaned himself up a little, grateful for the garbage pail beside her
      bed, into which he dropped the used rubber, and realized that it was his
      only one.


      "Logan, what's wrong?" She knelt up behind him, her hand on his
      shoulder. He turned to see her dark eyes were wide and somewhat
      apprehensive. "Is it -- is it me? Did I not do okay?"

      He pulled her into his lap. "Fuck, no, Marie! It's me. I'm a jackass. I
      wanted -- I wanted it to be good for you, and well, it wasn't, was it? I
      mean, you didn't--" This wasn't a conversation he had ever had -- had
      ever needed to have, really. Usually, his partners were very happy when
      they were done fucking. And if they weren't he didn't really care. But
      she *wasn't*, and he *did.*

      "I didn't -- come, you mean?" she asked, her voice shy but her eyes
      twinkling. He nodded. "That's okay, Logan. I did before. I never felt
      anything like that -- it was amazing. So if you're happy, I'm happy."

      He laid her back down on the bed. "Well, let's see if we can do it
      again, darlin'." He was going to focus himself completely on her, making
      her scream in ecstasy, or his name wasn't Wolverine.


      Several hours, and three orgasms later (he was very good with his hands
      and tongue, Rogue learned. The lack of condoms, while bothersome, was an
      obstacle he was able to work around.), he finally let her out of the

      They'd showered, which had taken quite a bit longer than expected when
      he discovered her stash of rubber gloves in the cabinet under the sink,
      and were just in time for lunch.

      Logan told Rogue he'd meet her out in the garden, where they could eat
      alone. They had a lot to talk about, and he didn't want anyone
      interrupting them. Then he went off to pack a bag for his trip north.

      She sat down gingerly on a bench with her turkey sandwich and tried to
      process everything that had happened that morning.

      She -- the untouchable girl, the girl with toxic skin -- had had sex.
      She'd thought it would never happen. And to top it all off, she'd had
      sex with the hottest man she'd ever met -- who somehow thought he was in
      love with her.

      Life was pretty good, considering that three days ago, she'd been
      resigned to a life without sex and without love.

      She had just taken a bite when Scott sat down next to her.

      "Mind some company?" he said.

      She shrugged and pointed apologetically to her full mouth.

      "Keep chewing. I just wanted to talk to you about Logan."

      She swallowed and tensed. "Scott--"

      "No, Rogue, listen to me first. Please." She bit her lip, but said
      nothing. "Ororo told you what happened five years ago. I don't -- I
      don't hold it against him. Jean and I -- we were falling apart anyway,
      we just wouldn't admit it. I was already half in love with 'Ro, so I'm
      not in any position to cast stones at Jean for turning to someone else.

      "But Logan -- he's not, he's not stable, Rogue. He's carrying a lot of
      baggage, and he'll run at the first sign of trouble. You deserve better
      than that. I don't know what kind of line he's feeding you--"

      "Scott! It's not a *line*."

      "Let me finish, please. Maybe it's not. Maybe he really believes he's in
      love with you -- though how he could think that when he's only spent
      what -- not even twenty-four hours with you? -- I don't know. But it's
      not real, Rogue. It's just --"

      She leapt to her feet, knocking her bottled water to the ground. Neither
      noticed. "What? Lust? Or some sort of weird game? Is it just a big
      mindfuck? Let's see how we can screw over Rogue even *more*?"

      He grabbed her hand. "No, Rogue." He no longer spoke in the calm
      measured tones of the Fearless Leader. "Jesus, no. I don't much like
      Logan, but I don't think he's cruel." He looked up at her and sunlight
      glinted off his red lenses. She wished she could see his eyes, see what
      he was *really* thinking. "He's self-destructive, Rogue," Scott finally
      said. "He craves danger and courts death the way other men breathe. Now
      that he's done it, he's leaving, Rogue. He'll be out of here by the end
      of the week. It's the way he is."

      "So I'm just one more challenge in the Wolverine's waltz with the
      reaper? Is that what you're saying, Scott? Fuck the girl with
      untouchable skin and survive. Ooh! It's scary enough to send shivers
      down your spine, isn't it," she said bitterly, her voice rising as she
      choked back tears.

      "Marie!" Logan appeared at her side. She looked at him and couldn't stop
      the tears from overflowing. She ran back into the house, crying.

      Logan whirled on Scott. "What the hell are you doing, Summers?" he

      Scott rose, his bearing loose, hands clasped behind his back. Only
      someone who knew him well would be able to detect his nervousness in the
      way his knuckles were white from the tight grip he had on himself.

      "Telling her the truth about you, Logan."

      Logan grabbed at the younger man's shirt, hauling him so close that they
      were nose to nose. "What truth would that be, One-Eye?"

      "That you're an adrenaline junkie and you'll be gone within a week. That
      you might think you're in love with Rogue, but you'll always love
      yourself more, and always need to be on the move, looking for the next
      new thing. And you won't be coming back for her. The way you never came
      back for Jean." He smacked at Logan's hands. "And let go of me." He was
      too used to this treatment from Logan to get angry about it anymore.

      Logan ignored him. "I didn't love Jean. I just thought I did."

      "And you don't love Rogue. You just think you do. Even if you do come
      back for her after you head up to Alkali Lake, at the first sign of
      trouble in the relationship, you're gone. You think I don't know you,
      Logan, but I do. And that's exactly what you'll do." His voice was even,
      not accusatory.

      Logan let him go and rubbed his forehead. "Christ, you're a cruel
      fucker, you know that?" Everything he'd said was true. Logan had run
      from every serious relationship -- both sexual and friendly -- he'd had
      in the fifteen years he could remember.

      "It's not cruel to tell the truth, especially if it saves Rogue from any
      more pain."

      "I'm not going to hurt her, Scott." There was a fierce conviction in his

      Scott was surprised, both at the intensity of Logan's tone -- it was a
      promise he'd never expected to hear the other man make -- and by its
      lack of mockery. He sighed in resignation. "You do and I'll kick your
      ass, healing factor or not, Logan."

      "If I hurt her, I'll let you."

      And Logan stalked off to find Marie, a plan already forming in his head
      on how to prove Scott wrong.


      Rogue rushed back to her room, but it still smelled of sex and Logan and
      herself, all mingled together. She needed someplace she could think
      clearly, and try to sort out her thoughts, and Logan's feelings on what
      Scott had told her.

      She made her way up to the roof and spent some time meditating. While
      immersed deep within herself, she realized that she'd made the choice to
      trust Logan, and she wasn't going to go back on that. Her decision made,
      she felt much calmer as she slipped back into the house to find Logan
      and tell him she still loved him, regardless of what other people
      thought or said.

      She found him in a bedroom down the hall from hers. He was packing a

      "You running again?" she asked. She tried to sound teasing and failed
      miserably. Her stomach churned in fear that Scott had been right and she
      was going to get her heart broken.

      He turned and stared at her, his eyes locking onto hers with laser
      intensity. "Only if you'll come with me."

      She gasped, and she must have moved, run into his arms, but she didn't
      remember that. She just knew she was suddenly pressed against him so
      tightly she thought he was going to crack a rib.

      "Anywhere, Logan. To the ends of the earth."

      "Oh, darlin' -- all that stuff Scooter said --"

      "It doesn't matter, Logan."

      "It's all true, Marie. You're gettin' a raw deal, you know."

      "I don't care. I just want to be with you as long as you want me."

      "Forever. I want forever."

      "Me, too."


      They were lying in bed after proving their words with kisses and
      caresses. "You know, I hope you really meant 'the ends of the earth,'
      'cause I got this cabin up in the Yukon -- we should be able to get
      there soon. The spring thaws are starting. It's a little primitive --
      just a cabin and some land -- but it's all mine. Ours, if you like."

      "I do," she whispered, cuddling against him. "When can we leave?"

      "Tomorrow, if you want. We can check out the lead on my past Chuck
      found, and then head on up to Dawson City."

      "Works for me."


      Three months later...

      "God, Logan, it's so beautiful." Marie stood in the doorway of the
      cabin, staring out at the sunlight pouring over the land, even though it
      was already nine pm.

      He stared at her, his heated gaze caressing the line of her jaw. "Yeah,
      it is." They were quiet for a few moments, then, "I guess we should


      They went about their work quietly; they'd settled into a rhythm in
      their time together, and they instinctively seemed to know what the
      other needed, and when.

      Logan had brought all the bags into the cabin -- which was really more
      of a shack than he remembered it being, full of dust and dirt and
      evidence that many small animals had lived there over the past few
      months -- and was locking up the Jeep when he heard Marie's silvery

      "What is it, darlin'?"

      She held up a sheer black bodystocking that had been shoved deep down
      into one of the bags Xavier had provided upon their departure. It had a
      silver X embroidered over the heart.

      "It's inescapable," she managed, and he smiled to see her so happy.

      "Yeah." He ran a hand through her hair. "Do you want to go back?"

      She leaned into him. "Someday. They're my family, Logan. Yours, too, if
      you want." He snorted. She put her hands on her hips. "What?"

      "Oh, something Chuck told me. 'Once an X-Man, always an X-Man.'"

      "Some things are just meant to be," she responded. "Like us."

      "Yeah, darlin'. Just like us."





      "There's nothing I won't do, but some things are gonna cost you extra."
      Mike Kellerman, _Homicide: Life on the Street_


      The Muse's Fool - http://www.unfitforsociety.net/musesfool
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