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X-Men: Academy- MY FRIEND, MY ENEMY (episode III of the series); Part 1

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  • B'Teena DOL
    well here s the newest of my canon... It s finished yet, just have to translate it... It ll probably be hard to understand if you didn t read anything of my
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 24, 2002
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      well here's the newest of my canon... It's finished yet, just have to translate it... It'll probably be hard to understand if you didn't read anything of my canon so far. You can find it on my homepage, the adress's in my signature. Here comes first part of episode III.
      ####################


      Series: X-Men: Academy

      Title: FIRE & ICE (Episode II)

      author: B'Teena DOL/Scare Glow (my boyfriend)

      language: English, but that's not my native language

      Disclaimer: All X-Men and other Marvel characters in here belong to Marvel, 20 Century Fox and else. Not mine ;). Mine are just Cat/Flash and Avery/The Liquidator

      Universe: Only based on the storyline of the movie 'X-Men' that was released in the year 2000.

      Timeline: Shortly after the movie

      Romance: Jean/Logan, Scott/Flash (new character), Iceman/Firestar, Storm/Avery (new character-> http://www.catbull.com/adora/ave.jpg why just a little pic... That's how he might look ;) )

      Summary: Magneto found a way to mutate all humanity. The X-Men have to try everything to prevent him from using this weapon...

      special guest: Iceman/Firestar/Spiderman

      remark: introduces Gambit and Beast to the movieverse

      Feedback: I'd very much appreciate it :).

      Rating: hm... G so far, I'd say...

      remark: On my homepage on http://www.catbull.com/adora/fanfxmen.html you find all my stories with pics in it. With them they're nicer to read ;). But it's the same stories :).

      ##

      "No, it won't get any better. I'm sorry, Cat." Sighing Jean seized the big long scare on Katja's shoulder. "I'm sorry that it looks that bad but you know how it was. When there's no tissue there's nothing to stitch, either. A permanent souvenir, I'm afraid. Regards from the big Liquidator."

      "Guess I have to accept. After all it's not in my face." Her friend pulled up the sleeve of her shirt. "Then this thing will always look like that, is that what you want to tell me?"

      "Well, it will get a little more pale, but... As I said it won't look really good anymore." The doctor put off her gloves that she always wore during examinations. A little quirk since Scott once had brought a virus from a fight, being transmitted by skin contact, and both of them had been sick for three weeks then.

      "Could be worse." Flash jumped down from the diagnostic bench. "Rogue, Kitty, Rose, Jubilee and I go shopping with Firestar. Wanna join? The girls were anxious to go out with her. A little honor to a hero, you know. I needed two days but I could convince her."

      "Bitches club on tour", Jean commented. "Thanks but unlike you I have to work from time to time."

      "Your fault. You should have become a secretary", Cat grinned. "I'm finished in the office since two hours."

      "Yeah, great job", her friend laughed. "You're out of college for the summer, you've got time all day. Besides you're two people in the office. When Kitty will be a trained doctor, I'll be retired."

      "Exaggerating again." Flash rolled her eyes. When Jean was on her age trip, it was better to flee. No rational arguments helped then. She was completely convinced that with her 28 years she was ready for the graveyard. "See you."

      "Greet Firestar", she asked her. "Tell her to be more careful. It was quite a shock to see her half unconscious in the news yesterday. Her and Iceman, they're not god and they better don't forget that when they do their missions."

      "I'll tell her but I know the answer yet. Something like..."



      "Careful, yeah, of course", Angie growled, touching Cat's shoulder. "A hole in the size of Texas in the shoulder, but I'm supposed to be careful, right? Look, you think that dress would fit me?"

      "Green?" Flash arched her eyebrows. "You're pregnant or something?"

      "Funny. From what? From Bobby's pathetic tries to flirt with me?", she murmured. "Don't I show him clear enough that he interests me? I always thought the only shy guys you can meet are in movie shows... Girls! Would you finally join us? Rose is reserving a table in the cafe over there for more than 20 minutes now. The waitress will think we're nuts if we don't finally get there."

      Rogue, Kitty and Jubilee had completely fallen in love with the employee of the store that the girls were in for more than 2 hours now. They hardly could be part from him. Finally they could say good-bye, not without his telephone number.

      "That boy's worth a sin", Marie giggled when they left.

      "Good thing Remy didn't hear that, he'd blow him up", Cat teased her.

      "Oh, come on!", Rogue moaned. "Why does every single male creature arriving at Xavier's think that I've been waiting just for him? First Bobby, then Pyro, now Remy... Is there perhaps something like 'Here I am, who wants to die?' tattooed onto my forehead?"

      "You're heartless", Kitty remarked. "They just wanted to..."

      A loud scream from the bar they were nearing.

      "That's Kathy!", Flash shouted, frightened. "Fast!"



      Actually Cat should have known.

      Half a year she was with Xavier now, and never there had been any problems because of being a mutant. Except for the talent evening that Scott and her had been disqualified from, and even then he had been the reason, not her. In college most pupils avoided her, but she did have a few friends, nevertheless. Besides she didn't spend enough time there to really let it hurt her.

      Never anybody had really attacked her in any way. She had felt too safe, she realized that now. It hit her like a truck when she and the other girls entered the pub and saw that Rose was pestered by several men without anybody helping her. Even the waitresses just passed by the table.

      "Jubilee, Kitty, leave", Flash ordered. "We'll make this alone. Don't risk anybody knowing that you're a mutant." She didn't take time to see if the younger ones obeyed. Kathy, though she was with Xavier for years, wasn't an X-Men. She was his secretary. She was in great danger.

      The attacker were definitely drunk, perhaps even on coke. Four man about forty, with beer guts, oily hair and beards, just jerks, but quite strong ones, unfortunately. Rose, very pretty with her long red hair, nearly reaching the floor, and her green skin, had attracted their attention, and it was clear what they wanted from her.

      Cat began to feel sick. It was three o'clock in the afternoon, they were in one of the better bars in a calm part of the city... And nevertheless four men could just attack a woman without anyone stopping them. Perhaps Magneto's opinion about mankind wasn't all that wrong.

      No!, she thought angrily, deleted this thought from her mind. Her family would have helped. Perhaps not her mother, but she would have called the police, anyway. Her sisters or her brother, or her brother-in-law, they had tried to protect Rose, no matter if she was a mutant or not. "Leave her alone!" She pulled back one of the men.

      He was so perplex that he stumbled and nearly fell, but that lasted just for a few seconds. "Stay out of this, kid." He gave her an unfriendly push throwing her onto the floor.

      "You guys certainly have to work on your manners." Firestar threw a fireball on the troublemakers.

      She didn't hit any of them, she hadn't really pointed it at them, either. But the wall of the bar began to burn, just lightly, but there was a panic immediately, anyway, the guests left. The enemies shrank back, too.

      Rose took the opportunity of them not taking care to flee to her friends. She trembled on all her body.

      Rogue put an arm around her shoulders. "It's okay. It's over."

      "Get out!", a fat boy, leaving an office, screamed enraged. Apparently the owner. Interesting, suddenly he had time. "Out! I don't want any mutants in here! Leave! Now!"

      A last left over guest got a extinguisher in the meantime and put out the fire.

      "Don't worry we didn't mean to stay any longer." Cat was surprised that her voice sounded very calm. The Professor's advise never to freak out apparently had helped more than she had realized. "We just defended ourselves." She pointed at the responsible ones, who stared at the group angrily but didn't make any move to attack again. "They started this."

      They wouldn't dare trying to hurt one of the girls again, Cat supposed. All of them looked like they had a file in the police archive already. They surely couldn't afford another imprisonment.

      But she underestimated the guys. When 'her' group - being the oldest one she was responsible for them - left the bar, one of the men followed them, with a knife in his hand.

      "Firestar! Watch out!" That was Jubilee. Without thinking about it she reached out her hands and shot her mysterious sparks at the man. It was the first time at all that she used her powers against anyone. Until now no one - including herself - had known what these energy flashes would do.

      Now it was demonstrated efficiently. The man was electrified strongly. The knife fell onto the floor, he collapsed.

      But his friends left the bar. "John! You bitches! Now we'll finish you!"

      "That's enough. Get lost!" Cat looked at the sky, made a flash hit the ground right next to the enemies. "A warning. If you don't want to get fried, you leave us alone."

      "Lose tongue, hasn't she?" The biggest one had recovered from the shock fast, he took a knife himself. "Try it, bitch. I'll slice you like a pig. Every dead mutant is a good mutant."

      It was getting out of control. Katja took a short look at her clock. Jean had received her signal, she should be on her way yet. Most important was to get the girls to safety.

      Angie seemed to think of the same, she built a fire wall between Rose, Kitty and Jubilee on the one side and the attackers on the other side. "Run! Run fast, and, above all, run far."

      "Dream on." The man called John had recovered. Before Flash, Rogue or Angelica could stop him he had gotten back his knife, threw it at the younger girls who tried to escape. It was a complete angry, clumsy throw, shot without taking aim, but the bastard was lucky. He hit.

      Jubilee didn't even scream. She just fell.

      But Kitty screamed. "Cat!"

      Katja stiffened. Completely shocked she stared at her wards. How could this have happened? That was impossible! They had just wanted to go shopping!

      Probably she'd still have stood there when one of the villains would have reached her and had cut her throat. Firestar and Rogue were attacked again, and the third of those freaks neared her... But then the tables were turned.

      Something red-blue jumped down from a roof nearby and pushed two of the men against each other, getting rid of them at the same time with his big swing.



      <center><img src="spideygr.jpg"></center>



      "That's Spiderman!", a third one shouted. "That guy beat up the best wrestler of the city! Let's go!" He and his friend vanished.

      "That's it. Call the police", an unknown voice mentioned satisfied.

      Flash didn't take the time to see who the stranger was. She ran to Jubilee. "Kitty, call an ambulance", she said sharply, even before she got there.

      "No... not an. ambulance", Jubes moaned. "No hospital..."

      "Of course, young lady." Cat knelt down next to her. She was awake, she could talk, so hopefully it wasn't... She felt dizzy, for a moment she was about to fade, had to sit down. One look at the knife in Jubilee's back told her two things at once, and just the last one really counted. For once: The weapon had at least reached the lung if not stung it. And: Jubilee would die if she wasn't treated within fifteen minutes the latest.

      Police sirens neared. Perhaps they were lucky and there was an ambulance with them, but she couldn't rely on it. Cat took her mobile phone.

      Kitty tried to stop her. "She doesn't want it."

      "Perhaps you didn't realize, but we have no choice." Katja dialed 911.

      "Please..." The hurt girl who was rolled to the side, tensed up, reached out her hand, put it onto Cat's knee. "I don't want to be registered... They'd find out..."

      "She's right", Kitty remarked. "Enough people saw what happened. Can't Jean...?"

      "Jean's no surgeon", Rose contradicted her. "We have to... Oh, thank goodness!"

      Jean, Wolverine, Storm and Scott joined them, wearing their uniforms. Apparently the had come with the Flyer.

      Cat was quite relieved that the decision wasn't up to her anymore. A decision that had to be made up at once.

      Jean saw what was up, didn't ask, didn't want to know anything, just repeated Flash's words from before: "Call an ambulance if you didn't do it yet."

      "No..." Now Jubilee could just whisper. She got weak.

      Rose gently took her hand. "I'm sorry. Your life's more important."

      "Sorry for interfering..."

      Again this strange voice. Cat turned around- and gasped.

      Everyone was talking about a 80's revival that took place right now, but for superheroes and -villains the 60's seemed to be the bigger idol at present. In front of her stood a big, muscular man in a blue-red costume, decorated with a black spider web painting. All his face - except for two milky white triangular windows - was covered by a mask of the same color. "I'm Spiderman", he introduced himself.

      "Very creative, we'd never have guessed", Scott commented. "Any proposals?"

      "I know a surgeon who always treats me if I'm hurt. He's a person who can be trusted completely. Your secret would be safe with him. If you want, I'll bring the girl there. Trenton Street 21, attic room, codeword MJ. Just two minutes from here if you travel with spider webs."

      "One minute if you can fly. I carry her", Firestar offered. "Would be more gentle."

      "Cyclops?" With the arrival of the others Cat had handed over the responsibility. She wasn't exactly sad because of it. "The guy just saved our lives. I think, he's okay."

      A police car stopped next to the group. Time was short.

      "Okay. But hurry up then! Flash, Rogue, do your report and join us then." Scott and the other X-Men vanished inside the house that they had came from.

      Firestar carefully put up Jubilee, took off. "Show me the way, spider." The two of them were gone within seconds.

      "Who's that?" Marie puzzled shook her head. "The troublemakers seemed to know him."

      "If he saves Jubes, I wouldn't mind him being Superman on LSD", Flash commented.



      'Codeword?' The voice sounding through the loudspeaker of the last bell next to an empty sign on the house Trenton Street 21 didn't sound very friendly.

      "MJ", Rogue answered, lightly intimidated.

      'How many more of you will arrive today? The hell, come in. Attic, three times long, one time short.' A crack in the connection, the door opened.

      Cat and Marie looked at each other, shrugged, climbed the stairs then.

      "Charming", Flash murmured.

      "If he's just operating it's better if he uses his energy on that, not on his hospitality", Rogue mentioned. She rang the doorbell, three times long, one time short, like they had been told.

      The stranger in the spider costume let them in. "Good timing. We're just finished."

      "Finished? Already?", Flash asked, surprised.

      "'Already'? You needed more than two hours", he explained, leading them into a big, simple furnished living room, where the other members of the team were waiting.

      Rose was missing, apparently she had already gone home. Jean wasn't there either, but Bobby was, being Iceman.

      "Good to see you." Cat hugged him. "Is the operation done?"

      "Since two minutes, yes." The door of another room was opened. Jean and a mutant who didn't look very trustful at the first sight, came through. "My name's Dr. Hanry McKoy." He was huge. He looked a bit like the amazing Hulk, but that was just an illusion.



      <center><img src="beast.jpg"></center>



      He was two heads bigger than Logan, had a thick blue fur and claws on his hands and feet. He looked scary. But he wore a long white coat and glasses, and his smile was likeable, in spite of his neutral, lightly uninterested voice.

      "Is she alright?", Scott asked immediately.

      "She's fine. You can take her home. Keep her in bed for two weeks, and no exhausting activities for six weeks. It was nice to meet you all." He wanted to leave.

      "Wait!", Jean asked him. "May we give you something for your aid?"

      "Not necessary", he refused without turning around. "I'm financial independent." He went on, stopped once more. "If you really want to do me a favor, take care on that guy a bit." He pointed at Spiderman. "He's doing his job for just four months and he's already one of my most frequent patients. And keep on doing your job. Makes me sleep better." He retired.

      "Four months?", Rogue asked cheekily while Logan went to get Jubilee. "Where did you hide all the time?"

      "I don't like interviews too much." Spidy shrugged. "You find the way outside, I suppose?" He went to a window, opened it.

      "Wait!", Storm shouted. "May we thank you, at least?"

      "That's what I just wanted to ask."

      They turned around fast when they heard Jubilee's voice. Was that possible?

      "I'm fine", she laughed. "Logan just doesn't want to let me walk myself."

      "Jubilation Lee, you've been more dead than alive just two hours ago, so stop complaining", Wolverine growled, without letting her go.

      "Just seeing you alright is all the thanks I need, kid", Spiderman mentioned friendly.



      <center><img src="spidy.jpg"></center>



      "So, my beauties... Guys... I'm gone." He left through the window.

      Quite impressed the woman watched him leave, even Jubilee who nearly contorted herself to see him better, cause Logan was too far from the glass.

      "Quite agile, isn't he?", Rogue mentioned, admiring.

      "Where did he get those nets from?", Jean wondered. "That's a complete new construction. He must be a genius scientist."

      "I called a friend who's a wrestling fan. She told me that he was the scene's big star for weeks", Kitty told them. "I should have gotten an autograph, that would be worth quite much at present."

      "Did you see him crawl up the ceiling? His abilities are very varied", Storm threw in.

      "I know that I heard that voice before", Firestar murmured. "Would be interesting to know who's hiding behind this mask. How he looks. Handsome body, anyway..."

      "He's very nice", Flash added. "And so modest... After all he took care of those guys before all alone."

      "I summarize, ladies, we've got a new friend", Jubilee giggled. "I hope he'll come rescue us soon again..."

      "Boys..." Speechless Logan looked at Scott and Iceman. "You think the same as I do?"

      "Yep", Cyclops growled. "For once. A remarkable exception. We've got to remember that day."

      "Day? Time? Place? We've already got the corps", Bobby agreed, pointing out of the window.

      "Do I hear some jealousy here?", Jubilee grinned.

      "Because of this wet end? Very funny. You go to bed now, young lady." Wolverine carried her to the door. "If you could leave your newest idol now, gals, I think, we're no longer supposed to be here."

      "What do you mean, idol?", Kitty defended herself when they returned to the X-Flyer. "Well, okay, he's nice, but who wants a man in tights, anyway?"

      "That can be an advantage, too", Jubilee grinned. "Those tights looked quite- baggy on the front side, didn't they?"

      "You're definitely feeling better", Flash commented. "I wouldn't be that enthusiastic. Probably it's just a newspaper."

      "Test it next time you see him, Jubes", Rogue giggled. "Just take a tight grasp. If he screams, then it's probably real."

      The men looked at each other in disbelief. "What does that guy have that we don't have?", Iceman wanted to know.

      "Hm... I could think a few things at once." Angie winked at him.

      "Woman!" Scott started the Blackbird. "That's just a nine-day wonder anyway. I bet no one speaks of him anymore in a few months."



      The team's good mood got destroyed at once when they came home and were called into the Professor's office. His face said everything. "Toad was freed."

      Scott saw the gooseflesh on Katja's arms and pulled her close. "I can't believe it! What's this special high-security prison for if the employees in it are incompetent?"

      "The police men did what they could. They couldn't defeat three mutants at once. They didn't even realize that someone had entered the jail till it was too late, because all the alarm equipment vanished."

      "Vanished? How?", Jean asked.

      "Just gone. All gadgets, all the sensors, the cameras- gone. Mystique, Sabretooth, Magneto and another unknown man went from the cellar up to the second floor, to Toad's cell, and deleted all security equipment on their way. 8 guards are missing too. Probably those who watched them work. Our spy in the jail says, the door of the cell isn't existing anymore."

      "Sounds like the acid that we got to know when we found Remy", Cyclops mentioned. "Probably the stranger was this clown in the comic costume. And I thought we'd never see him again."

      "However, Erik is back. With Toad he's gotten his Man-At-Arms back, that means, if he solves the problem with his new weapon, he'll be able to increase its capacity and start a new attack on New York", Xavier finished.

      "We can't just keep on sitting around, waiting for him to strike. We need this weapon", Cyclops mentioned. "I think we all know that searching for Magneto's hiding place won't get us any far anytime soon."

      "We'd have to make him and his people leave their residence", Jean said thoughtfully. "And then follow them... With the detectors that would be no problem."

      "Actually a good idea, but what should be the bait?", Scott asked, doubtingly.

      "I don't think you'll like the answer." She looked at Flash.

      "Have you lost your mind?" He nearly choked with the coffee that Marie had made to calm down everyone. "You can't be serious!"

      Cat ignored his reaction. "You're right, Jean. Magneto needs Remy and me to complete this weapon. It's best if I leave the mansion for a few days with our Junior, as soon as possible. Of course only if he agrees. Magneto surely will take the opportunity to capture us."

      "Did you all go nuts now? That's much too risky", Scott shouted, excited.

      "I also think it's too dangerous, at least at present", Logan surprisingly agreed. "Marie and I will fly to Mississippi tomorrow, after all. I don't know how long we'll be gone."

      "We can postpone that", Rogue offered.

      "That's not a good idea", the Professor contradicted her. "You should take care of this matter before you fight next time."

      "Yes, I know." She lowered her sight. If she'd have to touch Mystique again and be confronted with memories that she couldn't identify, not to speak of bearing them, she'd endanger the team, if she suddenly collapsed. "But I don't like the thought of leaving you alone just when you could get the chance to find Magneto."

      "There are enough people here", Cat threw in. "We can ask Iceman and Firestar to help us. We can't wait. Time's short. If the Brotherhood really completes this weapon, I couldn't forgive myself that. After all it's based on my data. I volunteer for this mission, Professor, anyway."

      "Me too." The door got opened and the young LeBeau entered, waving to the team. "Remy heard what you were talking about."

      "'Heard'? Wouldn't 'listened to' be the better word?", Xavier urged him. "Are you sure? You know that this can be dangerous."

      "Completely sure. I'd like to meet the people who killed all my friends." His sight darkened, anger flashed up in his scary eyes. The young French boy was a very special albino. He didn't have any health problems, his hair had a normal brown color. Just his red pupils were conspicuous. If intensive feelings were shown in them, like now, you thought they'd catch fire.

      "This is no revenge mission, Remy", Katja warned him. "It's just for finding Magneto's hiding place, and nothing more. If that isn't clear, I draw back my proposal."

      "Don't worry." He showed that light ironical grin of his. "I nearly died a few days ago. I won't risk my seconds life in attacking one of those guys. I just want to see them. Where do you want to go, by the way? You think of something special?"

      "Good question... Wait a minute. Don't you have the truck license?"

      "Oui, ma belle. They paid it for me when I was without a job for the third year. Not that it would have helped in any way, but I still have that paper. Why?"

      Cat smiled widely. "Then we'll travel with another friend. In Trent, about two hundred miles from here, there's a big riding competition. A perfect excuse for a short trip."

      "Is that plan already made up now?", Scott asked, irritated. "Katja, that's crazy! Be rational! You can't always rely on Magneto stopping Sabretooth. Now Toad's back, as well, he's not your best friend, as you might remember. Voluntarily letting the Brotherhood get you is deadly! If they find the personal detector..."

      "Unlikely", Jean remarked. "The new technique is completely save."

      "Scott, please." Flash took his hand. "I don't have a choice. I'll do this with or without you agreeing. But with your yes it would be easier."

      For seconds he remained silent. "I want somebody to go with you", he said then. "From the air, to be unspotted. Firestar, or Storm."

      "Firestar has more practice with flying", Jean mentioned.

      "Storm is more inconspicuous", Xavier contradicted her. "We should ask her, too, if Firestar prefers to stay here on call... Where is Ororo, anyway?"



      "I'm glad you have time." Avery waited in his car for Storm, in the parallel street to Xavier's mansion. "I missed you, I just had to see you today." He kissed her tenderly.

      "We were quite stressed", she sighed. "There was trouble in the city. I don't have much time, I have to go back to the pupils. They're quite upset." She took off her headscarf and the sunglasses. This hiding was getting on her nerves. But it was necessary. Nobody of the team would be happy with her relationship with Avery. At present it was best that way.

      "You want to tell me?" He gently caressed her hand.

      "I don't understand this world anymore, Ave. A woman gets attacked by four man, in the middle of the afternoon, in a full bar, and nobody's even interested. Another woman, not even 16 years old, gets stabbed by another man from behind, for this one reason. Because she's different. What's up with this world?", she shouted, angrily.

      "It's always been that way, `Ro. After all these years, all the wars, all that catastrophes, still nobody has understood. But don't give up hope. In some European countries, for example, there already are some good draft bills concerning mutants. Partly the people there are much more tolerant, whatever the reason might be. But in America lately also much has changed with senator Grandon. I think that it will be okay eventually."

      "These are the good examples. In Chile, not too long ago, two affected woman got burnt. They were thought to be witches. In Rome there was an attack on a asylum for mutants. And in New York people throw knifes at teenagers." Storm ran over her eyes. "Sometimes I'm afraid, Avery. Very afraid."

      "At present the voices balance one another, I think", he mentioned thoughtfully. "But if it gets worse, it will be necessary to handle the problems drastically. There should be someone who controls everything for some time. Who makes new rules for mankind and mutants. Someone wise. Someone who brings back the balance."

      "Just someone? Sounds much like a dictation ship." She arched an eyebrow.

      He smiled lightly, somehow knowingly... but dropped the subject then. "Will I see you tomorrow? What about going to the cinema?"

      "I'm afraid we'll have to postpone that. Thursday is my most intensive day of teaching, I can't get away. I'm afraid I'll have to stay at home more than usual this week, anyway. Wolverine and Marie - Rogue, that is - are gone, which means that we'll have to strengthen our safety measures", she explained.

      "That's the girl with the stripes in her hair, isn't she?" He knew the group very well by now though Storm and him had just meet three times so far. "I didn't know she and this hairy guy are a couple..."

      "Why do men always think just of things like that?", Storm laughed. "They'll go visit Marie's parents, that's it. Jean probably wouldn't like it too much if Logan suddenly would let her down for Marie. Anyway, tomorrow isn't possible. Friday in the evening I could flee for two or three hours. If you get us tickets for 'Star Wars', then I'm with you. How does that sound?"

      "Like a very good idea." He gave her a long kiss again, realized - not for the first time - the goose-flesh that she got on her arms when he touched her. "I'll get you here at six o'clock."

      "See you." She masked herself and got out of the car, avoiding his sight. She knew that she couldn't hide his fear of contact from him. But every time he mentioned it she trickily changed the subject.

      Avery turned down the side window. "`Ro."

      "Yes?"

      "What do I have to do to stop you from being frightened of me?"

      She bowed her head, shrugged her shoulders slowly. "Get invisible."

      So gently, so calm her voice sounded, a well trained disciplined self-control, but he did hear the shadows in it anyway. Now for example he could hear that her eyes that he couldn't see behind the glasses were full of tears. Again. If he'd ever find out who hurt Ororo so much, he'd gladly burn a whole into his body and tear out his heart.



      <center><img src="anist.jpg"></center>



      "You mean very much to me, `Ro."

      "That's just what I feel about you."

      At least that sounded completely honest and emotional. Her feelings for him were definitely real. He'd have to be satisfied with that for now. "See you on Friday." Sadly he watched her leave till she had turned left. Then he drove back to the city as fast as he could. Magneto was waiting.



      Magneto hadn't supplied the promised helicopter for Avery so far, but the young man had accepted the alternative, a damn fast motorboat, too. With it he was in just fifteen minutes on Snake Island. With a remote control in the boat he opened the artificial entrance of a grotto in the deserted, isolated island that was completely ignored by the government for some kind of reason. Probably Magneto was behind this.

      Avery docked and went to the little lift that had been installed into the rock. The Brotherhood sure had the best technique around. The castle that looked completely dilapidated from outside was equipped in a ridiculous similar way like the bridge of the Enterprise, but it was the perfect fortress. "Up." His voice had already been added to the main computer. The elevator moved.

      Ave folded his hands behind his back, tried to gain back his calmness. The meeting with Ororo had completely shattered him. In the beginning he had tried to fool himself, but by now he knew that she meant more to him that was good for him. He quickly had to find a solution for this problem.

      Above all Magneto wasn't allowed to know how much Avery really felt for the ice empress. Though he had reacted surprisingly relaxed when he had gotten to know of the relationship... It wouldn't have been of any use trying to hide it. At the latest, when Mystique had spied at Ave again someday - which she'd probably do in spite of his warning - they would have known. The leader of the Brotherhood hadn't shown big anger about Avery's tactic, anyway. Probably he thought this connection to the X-Men to be a good source of information. And that it was, indeed, after all. 'Don't let this go to far. That would just cause much problems for both of you', had been Erik's only comment.

      Well, Avery surely hadn't planned to do it, but... The doors of the lift opened, he fast tried to get rid of these thoughts. Working for Magneto, as a part of the Brotherhood, playing his role as the Liquidator, he wasn't allowed to have any feelings.

      "You're late." Toad sat on a window sill, with a laptop on his legs. He typed with his tongue only.

      "Care for your own business, Kermit." Without even looking at him Ave went on to the office where he thought Magneto to be.

      Something sticky was slung around his arm and pulled him back, he nearly fell onto his butt.

      Avery's first reaction was to take this ridiculous tongue and cut it off, but just in time he remembered that this wouldn't be very conducive for the relationship between Magneto and him. Todd had just been freed from prison, he probably had a special close season at present.

      "Toad, for you, still, Junior. Erik is very impressed by you, I know, but if you don't want a broken nose, keep the hierarchy in mind."

      Ave showed a devilish grin, took a derisive look at the rubbery green sling around his right upper arm.



      <center><img src="aveto.jpg"></center>



      "You want to keep that thing?" He reached out his left hand, placed it on a banister right next to him. The decorative brass pole liquefied in seconds. "I can do that with my other arm, too. Wanna see?"

      At once Todd let go off him. "Just kidding, Junior." He closed his computer and jumped down from the sill. "Magneto's waiting for you, anyway. There's much to talk about."

      "That's why I'm here. Oh, and..." Ave took Toad's wrist and realized, satisfied, that the man startled. Yes, now the hierarchy was definitely cleared again. "Avery, for you, still." He let him go, not without making a little hole in the musty leather jacket of his team partner. With fast steps he lead the way, entered Magneto's office without knocking. He wasn't treated exactly politely here either, so why keeping manners? "Hi."

      "What took you so long? You just wanted to change your clothes, didn't you?" Magneto seemed to be irritated too.

      "The next one! If that's all you wanted to ask me then I can leave again, as well."

      "Don't be silly. Sit down." Erik turned to Toad. "You saw the data of our new weapon now. What do you think?"

      "The principal is good. It will work. But we have to solve the medical problem before we increase the capacity. If we kill 95 % of mankind - and I wouldn't bet that more of them would survive - then it's just too risky. Perhaps the artificial mutation someday is a problem, and then we're alone here."

      "Somehow I was afraid you'd say that. Well, then our next step has to be the research of the DNA that this weapon is based on. Mystique, Toad, bring me Flash and the new mutant. Alive, just to make things clear."

      "What about me?", Sabretooth asked, irritated.

      "I need you to get material for the ultimate weapon. Avery, you come with us, too."

      "Ah." The young man leaned back, folded his arms. "That will be fun." He began to get angry.

      "I don't want to risk Flash realizing who you are. I prefer you to watch her as a normal man."

      "That won't be possible, it's college holidays. Besides she's avoiding me as if I had the pest, anyway. But if you want to strike, do it now. Two members of the team are gone at present."

      "Who?" Now Erik looked up.

      "Rogue and Wolverine. Doing some family business, I think, anyway, they're not here."

      "Wait." Mystique raised her hand. "Do you know where they wanted to go?"

      "No. Why?" He watched her closely. For the first time since he knew her she seemed to be excited.

      "I have to go." She stood up. "I'm sorry, Erik, but that's too risky. I have to watch her."

      He didn't seem surprised at all. "Okay. Stay in touch with me."

      "Did I miss something?", Avery asked, puzzled.

      "This, for once, is none of your business", Raven answered unfriendly and left.

      "Very well, old plan cancelled. New plan: Avery, you go to the mansion with Toad, as the Liquidator, and watch it instead of Mystique. I need those mutants here. That means if it's necessary you use hard means."

      "And what exactly does that mean?", Ave asked. "Oh... Wait a minute." The vibration call of his telephone was activated. That was just the case when Ororo called him. "Believe me, you want me to take this call. Hi, sugah."

      Toad looked at Victor in disbelief. "He isn't serious. He didn't just take out his mobile phone."

      "He did take out his mobile phone", Sabretooth growled. "Shall I finish the conversation?" He showed his claws.

      "Shut up." Magneto concentrated on Avery's short sentences only.



      <center><img src="magnha.jpg"></center>



      "No... No problem... I'll call you. I'm just... working. Later, `Ro." Satisfied Avery cancelled the connection. "Told you, you'd want me to take the call. We don't have to get them at Xavier's. We can take them prisoner on the highway tomorrow."

      "Good to hear something positive for once", Magneto nodded. "If other members of the team are with them, take them all. We may not risk that they find our fortress again. I'll be expecting your report."

      With that they were released. Avery shortly thought of protesting against working with Toad - he knew he could deal the two children of Xavier's group alone - but let it be then. He had joined Magneto's group voluntarily, the orders came from him. There were worse things than being together in one care with an oversized frog.

      He was more worried about the fact that Ororo had cancelled their date on Friday because she'd join Flash and Remy tomorrow. That meant he'd have to fight her for the first time.



      Sarah Daniels had an unexpected visitor this day. Her first reaction seeing the elderly woman in a white coat at her door was to send her away at once. "What are you doing here?", she asked flatly.

      "I have to talk to you about Marie", the nurse that was so familiar to her, answered calmly. "Do you have some time?"

      "Who is it, darling?" Norman, Sarah's husband, showed up behind his wife. His sight grew dark as well when he saw the visitor. "Please leave, Mrs. Stevenson. There's nothing to talk about."

      "I helped you when you asked me to. Listen to me for a few minutes now, please", the woman asked him. "It won't take long."

      "Alright." Hesitating the couple let her in, they sat down in the big, comfortable living room of the house. "What is it?"

      "I'm back in town just for a few days, and now I heard that Marie's gone. I wanted to know how that could happen. You know how much I like her. I was just her nurse, but she always meant very much to me."

      "You didn't care for quite a time lately", Norman remarked.

      "I was in Europe for years. I wrote a few letters as you might remember. I never forgot you." The gray haired woman leaned forward. "Please, Mr. Daniels... Mrs. Daniels- what happened? I'm very worried about Marie."

      Sarah shook her head. "You don't have to. She's safe, in a new home."

      "So you know where she is!" The woman's eyes narrowed. "Your neighbor said you never heard anything from her anymore."

      "There was no reason to tell it to all the city that our daughter is one of the most dangerous mutants ever", Norman explained bitterly.

      "Marie? A mutant?" Shocked Mrs. Stevenson lowered her sight. "So it happened, anyway. I'm sorry. We never could know if she'd have any powers someday or not. Where is she now?"

      "With other mutants. I don't know the address anymore. Somewhere in New York. She's fine. We quit the contact when we knew that", Sarah said hard. "You know our opinion about mutants. They're dangerous and unpredictable. Marie nearly killed her own boyfriend last year. That's when we lost our daughter."

      "I know how you think about it", the other woman nodded. "That's why I helped you with Melanie. I'm said to hear that Marie suffered her destiny now as well." She stood up. "Did you ever tell your daughter the truth about her sister, actually?"

      "Never", Norman answered. "There was no reason to do that. Melanie is dead for us, as well as Marie. If she'd come back here once more..." He ran through his hair. "I guess she's actually got a right to know. But I hope that she'll do what we asked her. Leaving us alone." He stood up too. "We're very thankful for all that you did, Mrs. Stevenson, but please don't visit us anymore. We want to forget the past."

      "I understand perfectly. I won't come back anymore, I promise", the woman nodded. "Good-bye. Oh, just stay, I know how to get outside. I'm not here for the first time, after all." She left the house, carelessly dropping a little metal gadget at the door. She closed the fence gate behind her and activated a little sender in her pocket.

      The nice rustically house of Norman and Sarah Daniels exploded with a great blast.

      "So far for the mutant's opinion about you, dear sir and madam", the woman growled. She went to a little back street to change back. If Anna Stevenson, a woman who had never existed, would be blamed for the murders, then she couldn't care less. But she shouldn't be seen in her true shape as Mystique in this Walton's village.

      After thinking about it shortly she changed to a young anonymous man in jeans and t-shirt and got back to her rented car then, left the city fast behind. She had fulfilled her task.

      And the secret still was safe.



      TO BE CONTINUED...
      #####

      Part 2 will be up tomorrow ;) Feeeedback? *blinkssweetlook* ;)


      B'Teena DOL
      http://www.catbull.com/adora
      He-Man/She-Ra & X-Men lair


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