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Fic: The Great Marriage Boondoggle 3/3 [S/J movieverse, PG]

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  • Avi and Mara
    TITLE: The Great Marriage Boondoggle 3/3 AUTHOR: Mara Greengrass AUTHOR S E-MAIL: fishfolk@ix.netcom.com. Feedback is better than chocolate. Disclaimer etc. in
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 25, 2002
      TITLE: The Great Marriage Boondoggle 3/3
      AUTHOR: Mara Greengrass
      AUTHOR'S E-MAIL: fishfolk@.... Feedback is better than chocolate.
      Disclaimer etc. in chapter 1

      Although they had drilled for this numerous times, somehow nobody had
      ever reckoned with a pile of powerful teenagers eager to protect their
      home. So, when Scott ordered his charges to head down to the safe rooms,
      he met a resistance worthy of the Second World War.

      As the rest of the teachers scattered for their posts, Scott argued with
      the resistance leaders and official spokesmutants: Dani and Sam.

      "Why're you teaching us to fight if we don't get to do anything except
      run and hide?" Sam asked.

      "You're here to learn," Scott said, already distracted by reports coming
      in from Jean and the Professor.

      "We're mostly about to graduate," Dani said, her hands clenched.

      //There's no time to argue.// Scott shook his head sharply, hoping he
      wouldn't regret this. "Fine, everyone join your assigned teacher. Do
      what they tell you. If they say duck, then I want you on the ground. Go!"

      The kids were gone in moments, Kurt grabbing Rahne's arm and bamfing
      away, Jubilee and Remy dashing away, both glowing with the energy of
      their powers, Paige taking a moment to strip away a layer of skin to
      reveal a surface that was probably adamantium.

      Scott didn't linger any longer, taking off at top speed for his post,
      Kitty and John pounding behind. He was already revising defense plans to
      take advantage of the powers added to the available list.

      **Professor? Tell everyone student reinforcements are on the way. Then
      have Kurt do some scouting over on the east side. I've got an idea.**

      * * * * *

      **I can feel at least 10 individuals coming toward the gatehouse, and
      another 10 behind the basketball court,** the Professor told Scott
      moments later, as the latter made his way toward the front of the mansion.

      **What does Kurt say?**

      **He can't see anyone, Rahne doesn't smell anyone, and I can't feel any
      minds there. The same is true for the stable side.**

      **So they're just coming from two sides? No protection from telepaths?
      They can't be professionals. Never mind, we'll think about that later.
      Before they get a clue and spread out, get Logan, Hank, Warren and their
      kids outside where they've got some room to act.**

      **I will let you know as soon as we have visual information,** the
      Professor said.

      Scott's mind raced. He dove into a small closet tucked under the main
      stairs, pulling out an emergency visor to replace his glasses, as well
      as other handy supplies, which he tucked into his pockets. Then, he
      continued down the hall to crouch near one of the tall windows, peering
      through the glass.

      Scott motioned to John, who flicked open his ever-present cigarette
      lighter, ready to shape the flame. Kitty, prepared to become intangible,
      hovered by her classmate waiting for instructions.

      **They are not mutants,** the Professor said. **They are armed, masked
      humans. We must do our best not to harm them.**

      **Yes, sir. Let's see how many we can trap before they catch on.**

      The next few minutes were a flurry, as Scott filtered mental reports
      from the Professor, Jean, and even Betsy at one point, issuing
      instructions to his troops. They quickly took a number of the intruders
      out of commission (although not as permanently as Logan wished), and
      Scott could see glimpses of several of the remaining men from his
      vantage point.

      There was a twist in his guts as he peered through the window, across
      the picturesque grounds. //Damn it, this place was supposed to be a
      sanctuary for the kids. First Mystique, and now this.//

      **Logan reports that Rogue managed to lure two, and he knocked out one
      while Bobby froze the other in place. That's nine,** Professor Xavier
      said, dragging Scott out of his momentary reverie.

      **We've got visuals on three here," Scott replied, **that means there
      are still eight others on the loose.**

      **Yes. They seem to be hovering around the edges.**

      **Well, they probably didn't expect a private school to be this
      defensible. Not to mention they've probably noticed some men missing.
      Okay, Kitty, John, and I can take out these three.**

      **Be careful.**

      Then, from outside Scott could hear percussive sounds that had to be
      gunshots. "Damn," Scott said both aloud and to the Professor, "no more
      time to plan, let's move."

      Scott motioned to Kitty and John, and put his hand to the pressure point
      on his visor. Kitty grabbed their hands and they phased through the wall
      at a run. Scott's last sight of John showed the boy's eyes closed as his
      arm entered the wall. Scott grinned tightly and as soon as they were
      through, he ducked behind a pillar.

      In their positions behind hedges and garden walls, the intruders froze
      in shock at the sight of people moving through walls. A belated couple
      of gunshots rang out, two going through still-intangible Kitty, and one
      brushing past Scott. A tight burst from his visor knocked the nearest
      gunman into a tree. Flame shot from Kitty and John's position and
      slammed into the back of another man aiming a gun at Scott.

      The intruder yelped and rolled on the ground to put out the fire on his
      back. The third man stood and stared in utter shock, his gun slack in
      his hand. Scott knocked him over with a low-level blast, then ducked
      down. He scanned the area, looking for anyone they might have missed.

      **Three down, Professor.**

      Kitty and John, hand-in-hand and intangible once more, were also looking
      for other intruders. Scott jogged down the steps toward the man hit by
      John's flame. Fire out, the man's eyes were wide behind the ski mask he
      wore and he tried to jump and run. Scott grabbed his arm, swung him
      around, and slugged him in the jaw. The man went down hard, and Scott
      quickly dragged him over to where Kitty and John knelt, still looking
      around them.

      Pulling some lightweight cord out of his pocket, Scott handed the
      unconscious man over to them. "Tie him up. I'll get the other two."

      John bent over to tie hands and feet, while Kitty kept a hand on his
      shoulder, ready to phase them out at the sign of any trouble. Scott
      nodded with satisfaction and quickly dragged the other two men toward
      the teens.

      He was just going to call the Professor for a report when the sun
      disappeared, covered almost instantly by a thick blanket of clouds. The
      wind began to pick up, moaning and rustling the leaves on the trees.

      **Scott?** Professor Xavier called. **Ororo needs assistance.**

      **On my way.** He looked at John and Kitty. "Make sure they're tied
      securely, then get under cover, but keep an eye on them." They nodded.

      Scott started to work his way around the mansion, past the topiary and
      ivy-covered walls. **Professor? Betsy? Jono? Are there any intruders
      between here and there?**

      **I don't see anyone, Mr. Summers,** Betsy replied.

      **What's the situation?**

      **Ms. Munroe is pinned on the roof in Remy's favorite spot. Paige and
      Ange are knocking out two men, but there are two more.**

      Scott came around a corner in time to see Paige, her metallic skin a
      dull gray in the low light, slam a fist into the face of a man held by
      the long outstretched arms of Angelo. Scott didn't slow down, just kept
      going. Around another garden wall, a man in front of him turned, and
      Scott blasted him without a pause.

      That left one man shooting at Ororo, a dim figure through the clouds and
      swirling winds of her powers. Scott took aim at the last man, but
      couldn't get a clear shot. He started to edge through the trees. Before
      he could act, lightning stabbed out of the sky, blinding him. The crack
      of gunfire stopped.

      Scott ran forward, as Ororo floated down from the roof, worry in her

      "Is he..." She swallowed the rest of her sentence.

      Scott and Ororo knelt over the prone figure, and Scott checked his
      pulse. "His heart's beating." The sky lightened almost instantly, and
      the ozone tang in the air retreated.

      Then Scott stiffened. **Professor? Where's the last one?**

      **All of the intruders are safely in custody,** the Professor said as
      Scott saw a flicker of movement to his right. He whirled, hand to his
      visor, as Sam walked out of the trees, a man slung over his shoulder.
      Dani--head held high--and Warren--wings folded neatly--followed Sam.
      Both teens struggled to contain their proud grins and Warren's
      expression was absolutely priceless, looking rather like a combination
      of shock and pride.

      Scott's eyebrows rose as Sam dropped the man on the ground in front of
      him, a dog bringing a rat to his master. Warren rolled his eyes, then
      said to Scott, "I didn't even see him coming. Dani projected the image
      of a monster, which distracted him and Sam took him out."

      Sam and Dani's grins emerged, so broad Scott thought their faces might
      split. "Quick thinking," he said, nodding his head at them, "very
      impressive." Then, he looked at the people gathered around him. "So, did
      we leave any of them *awake*?"

      All he got in response was a round of blank stares.

      **Professor? Any chance of someone to interrogate?**

      * * * * *

      It took a good ten minutes before the chaos was sorted out enough to get
      one of the few conscious intruders to Scott. Meanwhile, he occupied
      himself making sure all the unconscious ones were loaded into the back
      of an anonymous white van Logan found parked at the end of the long

      Scott was standing by the gatehouse fountain when Remy and Hank finally
      carried out a man tied hand and foot with numerous loops of rope, almost
      a mummy of white clothesline. The look on Scott's face made Hank grin.
      "I am not responsible for this man's state. Jubilee was assigned the
      task of restraining him and she became a bit...overenthusiastic."

      Scott let out a huff of breath. "Well, better safe than sorry. Besides,
      I refuse to offer a class in 'henchman tying' so I suppose this is the

      Hank chuckled, then propped the struggling man up in front of Scott and
      loosened the ropes enough that he could stand upright on his own.

      Scott stepped forward and yanked the ski mask off, revealing a
      thoroughly ordinary thug, short brown hair sticking upright in tufts and
      a nose that looked like it had been broken a few times. He was trying to
      look tough, not easy when you'd recently been tied up by a teenager
      chewing bubblegum.

      Scott looked him up and down, then pushed his face near the other man's.
      "Just what the hell did you think you were doing shooting at my kids?"
      He spoke quietly, but put all his anger over the students' safety into
      his voice.

      "We didn't know you was muties," the man said, with a hint of whine. "He
      just hired us to scare you off with the guns and stuff, we wasn't even
      supposed to shoot anybody, just shoot near 'em."

      "Who hired you?" Scott asked.

      "Jackie Silver," the goon said immediately.

      Scott took a step back and stared at him. He'd been expecting the
      government, Magneto, anything except the name of the local real estate
      developer who'd been pestering the Professor all week. "You must be joking."

      "No way. I didn't sign on to get hurt, this was supposed to be a milk
      run, scare off a few kids, I got no loyalty to Silver."

      "Why did he want to scare our kids?" Scott blinked, then answered his
      own question. "Scare the kids, get the parents to take them home, shut
      down the school, build condos. Jesus." Scott stared at him. "What the
      heck are we going to do with you?"

      The guy jumped a little at that, his feet stumbling on the paving
      stones. //Huh, he must have seen Logan in action to look that worried.//

      "We're not going to kill you," Scott said, adding under his breath,
      "tempting as it is for the scare you gave us."

      **I heard that, Scott,** Jean said.

      **Then you know I'm joking.**


      **True.** Scott glared at the man. **So, shall we turn them over to the

      **The Professor hasn't seen any signs that anyone has contacted them, so
      they won't be here unless you decide to call. It seems that our nearest
      neighbors are chalking the noise up to youthful exuberance.**

      **That's pretty tolerant for Westchester.**

      **That's minding your own business.**

      **Huh. So if we want the police, we need to call them ourselves.**

      The Professor joined the mental conversation. **I have no desire to draw
      attention to the school.**

      **But we can't simply let them go,** Jean said firmly. **I'm calling now.**

      **Can I let Logan have a little chat with them first?** Scott asked
      hopefully. **I'm finally finding a use for him.**

      **Scott,** Professor Xavier began.

      **But Daaaaad, you never let us have any fun,** Scott whined.

      Jean's laughter tickled his mind like champagne bubbles and even the
      Professor managed to send some amusement.

      With a sigh, Scott looked at the man standing in front of him, then over
      at the teachers and students who had gathered. "Okay everyone, time to
      clean up and come up with an explanation of how a bunch of
      schoolteachers knocked out a van full of thugs. The police will probably
      be here in a few minutes, so get moving."

      "We're just gonna turn them over?" Bobby asked.

      "I think this guy and his buddies are well aware that it's best if they
      leave us alone in the future."

      The man nodded his head furiously. "Oh yeah. We're not stupid. You
      couldn't pay me enough to go up against you again. Plenty of safer jobs
      out there."

      "And it might be best if you didn't mention what you saw here," Scott
      said quietly. "Safer all around."

      * * * * *

      Two hours after the first alarms sounded, the police had come and gone
      and the defenders could be seen sprawled on the front lawn recovering
      under the late afternoon sunshine. Jean and Hank were ministering to
      minor wounds, while the other teachers worked on mansion clean up. Scott
      and the Professor were in the latter's office, where they could talk in
      private while keeping on eye on everyone.

      "We will do a full debriefing later," the Professor said, "but I must
      say I'm most pleased with everyone's performance. The children took
      orders much better than I expected. And your story was convincing enough
      the police required only minor attention from me."

      Scott nodded absently from his seat by the window, where he was watching
      Jean inspect a gash on Rahne's leg. The young woman was curled up in
      Kurt's lap, and he gently stroked her arm. Jean didn't look worried, so
      Scott decided he wouldn't worry either.


      "I'm sorry, sir," he said, turning around, "what did you say?"

      Professor Xavier smiled. "Just that the children did a good job. Why
      don't you go outside and tend to your troops? I think they'd appreciate
      a few words from you. I'm going to do a final scan with Cerebro."

      "No, you should be the one-"

      "They're yours. You lead them, not me. Now go on, I'll be out in a few
      minutes. I know they'll worry until everyone has seen all the teachers
      safe and sound." The Professor rolled out of the room, leaving a pensive
      Scott to watch the scene outside before heading out the door.

      The moment he stepped outside, he was besieged.

      "Is Professor Xavier okay?" Rogue asked, her brows furrowed.

      "He's fine. Just doing a quick search with Cerebro."

      Jubilee danced around him, unable to squelch the tiny plasma sparkles
      that shimmered around her hands. "Didja see? Did Hank tell you? I burned
      'em from one side and Rem here blew stuff up on the other and they
      didn't know if they were coming or going!"

      "You did a great job," Scott said.

      "And you should have seen the way I found them and Jono blasted them,"
      Betsy said, looking happy, for once. "I even knocked one of them silly
      with just my mind."

      "A great job," Scott said again. He continued to move through the group
      of kids, trying to stop and praise each one.

      "Mr. Summers?" Kitty looked up from where she and John were leaning
      back-to-back. Her face showed exhaustion, and somehow she looked more
      adult than she had earlier in the day.

      Scott shook off his ruminations. "Yes, Kitty?"

      "Do we still have to do the final assignment?"

      Scott stifled a grin as John covered his eyes and other students groaned
      and flopped down onto the ground. He couldn't leave them in suspense for
      long. "No, the Professor and I have decided that this afternoon could
      stand in lieu of that final assignment."

      "How'd we do?" Sam asked from where he sat with his sister.

      All heads turned toward Scott, and he took a deep breath. "As I think
      you can guess, you all passed. You passed with flying colors. We're
      proud of you, and your willingness to protect the others. You worked
      with your fellow students, you listened to the orders of the teachers,
      and protected the school."

      Scott looked at the kids as he spoke. "Perhaps best of all," he said,
      "the teachers report that each pair worked together as if you'd been
      doing it for years, just as we've practiced and hoped. I think you've
      all learned the value of teamwork, perhaps not in the way we intended
      you to learn, but that's a lesson in itself."

      Every face was turned toward him. "For all your arguing this week, when
      you needed each other, you were there. Remember that. Hold onto it."

      And unexpectedly, the kids started to cheer. Faces shining, they clapped
      for him, for each other, they hugged and jumped up and down. Bobby and
      John pounded him on the back, looking abashed when they realized what
      they'd done, but still grinned at each other.

      Then Jean stood beside him, her love flooding through their link, warm
      and bright. "It's okay, Scott," she said. "We won today."

      "No, they won."

      * * * * *

      The sun was long set, the proud and excited teens finally tucked into
      bed after a raucous celebration. Scott and Jean stumbled into the
      bedroom, where the click of the door latch allowed them the illusion
      that they could, at least briefly, shut out the rest of the world. The
      warm color of the walls and simple decorations had rarely looked quite
      so welcoming.

      Scott flopped bonelessly onto the bed, followed quickly by Jean. They
      lay like that for a few minutes, just enjoying the silence, before Jean
      started to chuckle.

      Scott rolled onto his side to look at his wife, tucking a pillow under
      his head. "What's so funny?"

      "Everything," she said, shaking her head slowly. "The kids, us, the
      other teachers, the past week." She stopped chuckling, and looked right
      at him. "We're actually remarkably lucky. Did you know that? With all
      the challenges we face, we're here, we have our friends, a bunch of
      wonderful and aggravating students..."

      Scott brushed a lock of silky hair out of her face and ran his fingers
      from her forehead down to her chin, before leaning down to kiss her.
      "Sometimes I think I'm the luckiest man in the world."

      She smiled up at him.

      "Then Logan pisses me off. Or Bobby freezes the water pipes. Or Betsy
      pitches a fit over the quality of tea we serve."

      She stared at him for a moment before beginning to laugh again. "Oh,
      Scott," she managed through the laughter as he grinned at her. "You just
      can't let a romantic moment go by without comment, can you?"

      "Shut up and kiss me," he said.

      And she did.

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