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Fic: An Impassioned Defense: 1/1: RR#48: Scott, Hank

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  • victoria p.
    Title: An Impassioned Defense Author: Victoria P. [victoria_p@att.net] Summary: Hank forces Scott to defend his decision. Series: Unspoken #48 Rating -- R-ish,
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 24, 2001
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      Title: An Impassioned Defense
      Author: Victoria P. [victoria_p@...]
      Summary: Hank forces Scott to defend his decision.
      Series: Unspoken #48
      Rating -- R-ish, for one little snippet of frank sexual discussion. <g>
      Timeline: right after Beer and Pretzels, slightly before the ending of
      The Masks We Wear – oh, you'll figure it out.
      Disclaimer: I own not. You sue not.
      Archiving: At Jenn's Indulgence and the Muse's Fool
      Feedback: Woman does not live on bread alone, but also on every word of
      feedback received
      Notes: Thanks as always to the usual suspects. I suck at Hank, so while
      he's here, he doesn't say much.
      Date: October 24, 2001

      ~*~

      Scott left Rogue's room with a new spring in his step, resolved to go
      see Jean and straighten everything out.

      He was going to apologize for jumping to conclusions about her
      relationship with Warren -- hell, he'd apologize to Warren, too, if he
      was there -- and ask her to go with him back to the Professor's cabin in
      the Catskills and see if they couldn't sort out whatever this thing was
      between them.

      With that aim in mind, he went to his room to pack a bag. On his way
      out, he'd send one of the kids up to Rogue's room with some food, so she
      didn't have to subsist on beer and pretzels and Ororo's idea of a good
      dinner. He found himself grinning at the thought of 'Ro cooking dinner
      for anyone.

      Pulling out his overnight bag, he neatly placed three shirts and three
      pairs of pants into it, then some socks and underwear.

      It was when he went to the desk to get his copy of _The Little Prince_,
      which traveled with him everywhere (St. Exupery had been a fellow pilot,
      after all), that he saw something that didn't belong.

      As there was rarely anything out of place in his little fiefdom, he was
      startled to see the skeletal face of fashion's flavor of the month
      staring up at him from the cover of "Cosmopolitan."

      He frowned.

      Marie didn't read "Cosmo." Said it was stupid, as well as a tool of the
      patriarchy to keep women subservient by screwing with their self-esteem.
      Or something. He usually tuned her out when she went on one of her rants
      about the patriarchy. He could only handle so many manifestoes in a day,
      and usually she got to him much, much later than the Professor did.

      Not that he wasn't completely in sympathy with her views. He was. He
      just didn't see why she had to discuss it when the Knicks were on.

      Picking up the magazine gingerly, as if it were a rare species of
      poisonous snake, he noticed that several pages inside were folded down.

      The magazine fell open naturally to a page with the headline, "Five Tips
      to Better Blow Jobs." He read it quickly and nodded. Marie knew all this
      stuff already -- she actually gave great head, considering that there
      always had to be something between her mouth and his cock. She knew how
      to use her teeth and her tongue, and she'd learned, after a while, to
      suppress her gag reflex. She was really quite impressive, he thought, a
      little proud that he'd been the first to teach her about sex.

      No doubt Logan would be reaping the benefits.

      That punctured his happy mood, as he flipped to the first folded down
      page.

      "Has the Fire Died? How to Rekindle the Flames with Your Ex," screamed
      the headline.

      He sighed.

      This had Bobby's fingerprints all over it. And to get it in here,
      through the locked door, either Jubilee or Kitty had helped, because
      Bobby was hopeless at breaking and entering. Bobby Drake was many
      wonderful things, but subtle had never been one of them. Taking another
      look at the front cover, he noticed Kitty hadn't peeled the address
      label off.

      He sighed yet again. It was a familiar reaction when dealing with the
      kids at Mutant High. He'd have to scold them for being sloppy, after he
      scolded them for breaking into his room.

      He knew Kitty and Bobby had some sort of attachment to him and Rogue as
      surrogate parents, and it saddened him to think how they -- and the
      other kids -- would be affected by the breakup.

      He wasn't concerned about the money that might change hands, though he'd
      have to take Jubilee to task for that, as well. But first, he wanted to
      do his damnedest to make sure he held up his end of the action by
      convincing Jean to go to the mountains with him. He wondered idly if it
      would be unethical to put a bet on himself and Jean. Maybe he could get
      Storm to do it for him.

      Slinging the bag over his shoulder, the magazine tucked inside, hidden
      beneath his underwear and shaving kit (it is always wise to know one's
      enemy, and Scott had made a thorough study of _The Art of War_ in his
      years as an X-Man), he went looking for Bobby.

      Not finding him in any of his typical haunts, Scott headed down to the
      lab.

      Where Hank was, Bobby could often be found, especially when St. John was
      otherwise engaged, as he often was, because he still occasionally
      couldn't resist the impulse to set things on fire. And while Scott
      understood the urge, he couldn't allow students to go around burning
      things down, not if he wanted the school to stay certified in
      Westchester County. Hence, Johnny was often seen doing chores no one
      else wanted to, as punishment for indulging his pyromaniacal tendencies.

      Anyhow, Scott knew Bobby would likely be with Hank, especially since
      Hank had been away for two weeks.

      And he was right. Bobby sat on a stool at one end of Hank's workbench
      eating ice cream, while Hank was hunched over a microscope.

      "Scott!" Bobby jumped up, ready to run.

      Hank looked up and frowned. "Scott," he said, and his voice was serious,
      quite at odds with his usual jovial personality.

      Scott groaned inwardly. Hank had long ago cast himself in the role as
      Rogue's older brother; he'd grilled Scott both before and after their
      first date, and threatened him with grievous bodily harm (to quote the
      good doctor), should Marie be hurt by anything Scott did.

      Somehow, in his haste to quit the mansion and get to Jean, he'd
      forgotten that little detail.

      Bobby, never slow on the uptake, easily detected the tension between the
      two men and attempted to sidle unnoticed out of the lab.

      Scott frowned at him, but said nothing except, "Rogue hasn't eaten
      dinner yet, Bobby. Please take a tray up to her for me, okay?"

      "Sure," Bobby answered, eager to escape a possible lecture, and hoping
      to catch a glimpse of Miss Rogue in the nude, since rumor had it she
      never wore clothes in her room.

      After he was gone, Scott sauntered over to the workbench and sat on the
      stool he'd vacated.

      "You have something you'd like to say to me, Hank?" he asked, steeling
      himself for the other man's displeasure.

      Hank pursed his lips. "What is going on with you and Marie? I am most
      concerned for her, both physically and emotionally."

      "She ended the engagement," he answered baldly. "Not without good
      reason."

      "And that reason might be?" Hank pressed.

      "That's between me and Marie."

      "And the rest of the school, if Bobby is to be believed. Not to mention
      that man," he infused the words with stinging contempt, "Logan." He rose
      from his seat and leaned forward on the counter, his voice rising as he
      spoke. "Your fiancée went skinny-dipping with some stranger, and almost
      wound up killing him, possibly doing grave damage to her own
      psychological health in the process. And yet, you seem remarkably blasé
      about the whole thing."

      "It's... complicated. And really none of your business." Hank opened his
      mouth, but Scott's next words forestalled him. "But, you're one of my
      closest friends, and one of Rogue's, so I'm going to fill you in." He
      waved a hand. "Sit down and get comfortable. It's a bit of a soap
      opera." And he launched into the whole sorry tale, from the immediate
      rapport he and Jean had felt, through Logan's saving Rogue on the Statue
      of Liberty, and up to the discussion he and Rogue had just had. It took
      much longer than he expected, what with Hank interjecting often, to ask
      questions or comment on the events.

      He wasn't sure how much time had passed, since they were down in the
      bowels of the building, but finally, he was done. "Does that make things
      any clearer?" he asked.

      "Not really," Hank admitted.

      "Welcome to my life."

      "This woman, Jean, she's a telepath *and* doctor?"

      "She's a floor wax and a dessert topping," he answered flippantly,
      before he could stop himself. Hank frowned and Scott nodded. "Yes."

      "Do you know what her specialty is?' Trust Hank to focus on the
      scientific aspect of things.

      "Hank, we're getting a little off the topic here." Though maybe that
      wasn't such a bad idea, if it would keep Hank from ripping him limb from
      limb for hurting Rogue.

      "It's just fascinating. To be able to sense what a patient is feeling,
      to be able to pinpoint the location of their pain -- had I such a gift,
      I might have remained a practicing physician." He seemed lost in thought
      for a few moments, and Scott hoped he'd gotten out of the talking-to
      he'd expected. He and Bobby were more alike than he realized, he
      thought. He'd have to go easier on the kid.

      "However, that's not the point, is it, Scott? You believe you have some
      sort of -- connection -- to this woman, strong enough to make you
      abandon six years with Rogue? And Rogue -- she is interested in *that
      man*?" He shook his head. "I could scarcely credit it when Bobby told me
      about it, especially this insane wager he and Jubilee have instituted,
      but--"

      "If I were you, I'd put money down on me and Jean," Scott said
      confidently. "I've never felt like this before, and I'm not going to
      give up on it. I'm tired of playing it safe and not getting what I
      really want."

      "So, your relationship with Marie was 'playing it safe'?" Hank asked
      sharply. "It wasn't what you really wanted?"

      Scott licked his lips. He needed to be honest about his feelings, but he
      didn't want to denigrate Rogue or what they'd shared. And he certainly
      didn't want Hank any more pissed off than he already was. "Not anymore,"
      he finally answered. "I love Rogue. But I'm not *in* love with her
      anymore." He shook his head. "I'm beginning to wonder if I ever really
      was." He ran a hand through his neat hair, mussing it slightly.

      "I -- I'm tired of playing it safe, Hank. That's what Rogue and I were.
      Safe. A way to be with someone without ever taking any risks, a way to
      not be alone. Not a way to be together. There's a difference. A *huge*
      difference, I'm learning. Rogue and I couldn't give that to each other.
      Maybe we didn't even want to, really. I don't know.

      "All I do know is, I have to take this chance, and go see this woman,
      before she disappears back into the wilds of Canada, and I spend the
      rest of my life wondering what might have happened, if I'd just been
      smart enough, brave enough -- crazy enough, even -- to take a risk."

      "This isn't like you, Scott," Hank said softly.

      He rose. "Maybe it is, and I just didn't know it."

      "I still don't like it," Hank said, "but I suppose I can respect your
      decision. Marie deserves someone who will make her the center of his
      world, not a man who will always be wondering about another woman."

      "Exactly."

      "Good luck, my friend. It sounds like you'll need it."

      Scott grinned, and it was as if all the strain of the past few weeks was
      erased, and he looked very much like the teenager he'd once been.

      "Oh, yeah. Hank. I definitely will."

      And with that, he set off for the garage, hoping that at least his end
      of this insane love pentagon would be resolved shortly.

      ***

      victoria

      --

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