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FIC: "Lost in the Translation" (1/1) [PG-13] {L/R, L/J}

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  • Diebin
    Title: Lost in the Translation Author: Diebin Rated: PG-13 for language and themes Summary: Rouge tries to give up Logan for Jean--and finds out that she
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 22, 2002
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      Title: "Lost in the Translation"
      Author: Diebin
      Rated: PG-13 for language and themes
      Summary: Rouge tries to give up Logan for Jean--and finds out that she can't
      make other people's choices for them.
      Pairing: L/J, L/R
      Archive: WRFA
      Disclaimer: I own not. You sue not.
      Notes: I had a fever last night. I had very strange dreams. I woke up this
      morning with the almost overwhelming desire to write this story. I did so.
      Rather quickly. Not quite sure why . . but hey. *shrugs* When the muse cracks
      the whip, I jump.
      Dedication: Beth, Jenn, Ann, Vic and Andy, for caring enough to take over the
      list. Donna, for being my Tyler, and to all the people who sent me nice e-mails
      over the last few weeks. You're golden.

      ~*~

      I guess the one thing he never got was that I wouldn't be honored. Wouldn't be
      flattered. Wouldn't thank him for the privilege of knowing how he'd degraded
      everything that was supposed to be us.

      He didn't see it that way at first. And I guess that's what made all the
      difference.

      Starting at the beginning. It's the only place to start. Start when he found me,
      cold and shivering in his trailer.

      I knew I couldn't trust him. You don't trust people who hurt other people for
      money. If they'll do it for money, they'll do it for free--because it's the only
      kind of life they know. Hurt. Reward. Hurt equals reward.

      It becomes a habit. One that you really can't break.

      I knew I couldn't trust him, but I did anyway. Because when you're young and the
      world has beaten you down, you're always ready for that little piece of hope
      even if you never admit it. Expect the worst--but you never really stop hoping
      for the best, no matter how bad things get.

      Things were bad. But I had that little bit of hope, and he fanned it into life
      so slowly, so gently. Like he knew how fragile it was and was careful not to
      overwhelm it. Never let me think he was perfect--but always so close. Chase me
      down and find me. Save my life. Bleed for me. A slow, stately progression until
      I truly believed, yes, he was the good thing in my life I'd been waiting for.

      That was the beginning. And it was beautiful.

      He left and yet he didn't leave, because no matter how far he wandered there was
      always something of him left--if only because he called to check up on me--and
      Jean, her face full of conspiratorial mischief, passed on every conversation in
      loving detail.

      Jean, the sister I'd never known I wanted, the mother I'd never known I'd need.
      The only person in the school other than Xavier himself who knew what it was
      like to be victim to voices that wanted to own little pieces of your soul. Long
      nights together in the lab, Jean telling me to concentrate a little harder,
      breathe a little deeper--she's the reason I kept my sanity.

      And I'm the reason she kept hers, when Scott sacrificed himself on a mission to
      keep her alive. It rocked the school, his death. Rocked it on it's foundations
      and left us all so shaken up that we couldn't quite get over it. Xavier died a
      little inside, and that left Jean and Storm to be that much stronger at a time
      when neither could afford it.

      Jean was so fragile. So very, very fragile and I had decided long before Logan
      came home that if he was the one who could put her back together, I didn't care.
      Wouldn't care. Wouldn't let him choose me.

      My first mistake. Thinking I could make choices. Thinking that I could make
      /his/ choices, and that for some reason he'd abide by them as if I had the right
      to decide the course of his life.

      I might have encouraged her, a little. Swallowed pain, swallowed pride too--and
      encouraged her. After all, I'd had him in my head. I knew the interest was
      there. I thought it would still be there--strong, growing, alive. I thought they
      had a chance.

      I did. In the aftermath, a lot of things got hurled at me that I didn't really
      deserve. I never did this to prove I was better. To prove I was more loved. I
      didn't want Jean's pain--I didn't want her broken heart.

      I just wanted her happiness.

      Funny how little things like that get lost in the translation.

      ~*~

      I was twenty-two and he was living in the mansion pretty much full time when it
      happened. Almost a year after Scott's death, and Jean was still trying to be
      strong on the outside but was so broken up inside that you could almost see the
      broken starting to seep through again.

      I'm not sure how it happened. I'd been steering clear of the two of them,
      because I'd seen the cracks in Jean's shields . . . and I'd seen how Logan
      seemed to fill the cracks without even trying. He was the strong that was
      missing from her life. He was the compass that pointed inevitably north, like
      Scott always had.

      She needed him, and I didn't want to be the reason Jean didn't get what she
      needed.

      Jean asked me once--asked me if I loved him. We'd taken a bottle of wine to the
      roof and it was just enough to loosen the tongues enough to say the things too
      personal to share.

      I make it a practice never to lie to telepaths.

      I told her I loved him.

      But then I told her the little lie.

      "But not like that."

      ~*~

      I knew the moment he went to her.

      I'd like to say I felt it--that it was something deep inside me breaking, or
      healing . . .

      The sound of her headboard crashing against the wall we shared wasn't subtle.
      Nor were the growls that couldn't have belonged to anyone but him.

      I slipped from the room quietly, softly, not wanting to hear the sounds of my
      heart breaking in two. On late night television I found a channel showing old
      movies. . . and I could almost pretend at four in the morning that my tears were
      for Scarlet O'Hara, and not for myself.

      I cherished the pain as I clutched it against my chest. It wasn't clean--it was
      jagged, the hurt mixed up with sharp razor points of satisfaction that I'd done
      the right thing. The noble thing.

      I had never empathized more fully with Scott before. He'd given his life for
      Jean, I'd given my happiness.

      But she was worth it. I watched the sunlight creep across the floor towards me,
      and I knew that Jean was worth my pain.

      You see, I loved her, too.

      Something else that got lost in the translation.

      ~*~

      Jean was happy, so happy that she didn't realize that everyone was starring at
      me, watching to see if I'd fall apart in front of their eyes. My love for Logan
      was no secret--everyone knew.

      Everyone watched, and the watching was worse than the broken heart, because I
      had to work twice as hard to hide inside myself. And I hated it.

      But Jean smiled at dinner, and the little bits of broken that had been seeping
      through were gone--because Logan did what he was so good at, and protected what
      was his.

      We would have gone on like that--would have gone on forever with Logan keeping
      Jean together and me getting over it day by day--because heartbreak is never so
      bad that you can't get over it just a little.

      I thought I was doing well, and maybe I was. Maybe I was doing too well. Because
      Bobby, sweet, caring Bobby who had always loved me just a little--

      He did what I had done. He threw aside his own feelings and fought to give the
      person he loved what they needed.

      He confronted Logan.

      For breaking my heart.

      ~*~

      Logan came to me that night, shirtless and disheveled and for a moment I thought
      he'd come to me from Jean's bed, but he didn't smell of sex, just of sweat and
      frustration.

      "Bobby said that you love me."

      It was hardly subtle, but with Logan standing not a foot from me, nearly
      vibrating from some withheld emotion, it was hard to fault him. He looked like
      he was about to fall apart.

      A split second to decide--lies or truth. Lies or truth.

      Lies.

      Truth.

      I couldn't tell the difference anymore.

      But my time was up. "You've always known that, Logan."

      "But you _love_ me," he repeated, taking a step forward, and he looked like he
      was ready to jump on me.

      "And you love Jean." It seemed important to get that out, to remind him before
      he forgot. Remind him if the woman on the other side of the wall, the one who
      loved him. The one who was only living again because he was making her feel like
      it might be possible.

      "I want you, Marie." His voice was low and heated, and I couldn't help the
      thrill that went up my spine. God, how I'd wanted to hear those words. I'd
      wanted to see him, standing over me, trembling.

      But when he took a step closer I shook my head and showed him my bare hands.
      "Not safe."

      "Damn it, girl." He stared down at me, and despite his protestations of love, he
      looked furious. "I'm in your damn head. You got everything else--I'd think you
      would have realized that I want you." Another step, and he said the words that I
      didn't expect, because I never thought he'd actually say them. "I love you,
      Marie. God damn it, I love you."

      And for one blissful moment--I was almost ready to forget about anything. Forget
      about the woman on the other side of the wall, forget about deadly skin and
      confusion and the fact that this man could be my father--my grandfather--hell,
      my great-grandfather, for all that I knew.

      Then he spoke the words--the only words that could break the spell.

      "I pretended she was you, Marie."

      ~*~

      I guess the one thing he never got was that I wouldn't be honored. Wouldn't be
      flattered. Wouldn't thank him for the privilege of knowing how he'd degraded
      everything that was supposed to be us.

      He left the mansion that night, after I turned my back on him and refused to
      talk to him.

      Jean crept into my room in the early morning, laying on her side and facing my
      back. "The walls are thin." It was half admission to eavesdropping--half
      apology. I don't know if she was apologizing for the eavesdropping--or for the
      many nights of sex I was forced to live through.

      "I'm sorry, Jean." My voice was thick with tears--because now I'd given up the
      man I loved twice, once for a better cause, and once for nothing but pride.

      "Rogue, you loved him." Her voice was shaking, on the edge of tears. "And he
      loved you. Why did you give that up for me? Why did you lie?"

      It was a question I'd be asked a lot in the next few days, and no one would be
      as kind about it as Jean was being. "Because I love you too, Jean. And you've
      been here for me--been here more than he ever has."

      "I had true love once." I wasn't even sure she was talking to me anymore. "Logan
      wasn't true love. He was . . . warm. And strong. And I could pretend for a few
      moments that I hadn't left my heart and my ability to love in the grave with
      Scott." I heard her shift, and her hand was on my shoulder. "But it was just
      pretend, Rogue. It wasn't real. Not like what you have--"

      "I don't have anything, Jean." And my voice is firm. "I don't have anything at
      all."

      Jean gave me a careful hug, and when she crept back to her own room I rolled
      over and stared at the ceiling until dawn.

      I knew I'd have a lot to face the next day.

      ~*~

      People asked me why I'd played a game with Jean.

      I denied it.

      People asked me why I'd wanted to prove I was better.

      I hadn't.

      People asked me what my motivation had been.

      I told them that I'd loved Jean.

      I did. In the aftermath, a lot of things got hurled at me that I didn't really
      deserve. I never did this to prove I was better. To prove I was more loved. I
      didn't want Jean's pain--I didn't want her broken heart.

      I just wanted her happiness.

      Funny how little things like that get lost in the translation.

      ~*~
      FIN
      ~*~

      *hides under desk* Hey, it's been a long time since I done this. I'm rusty! *g*
      No rotten veggies, please. :)

      -=-
      Diebin
      diebin@...
      "Anakin has never had sex. Immaculate conception is genetic."
      -=-
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