Prodigals #10: Wordsmiths 1/1 [Marie, Jonothan Starsmore, original characters]
- Title: Wordsmiths
Characters: Marie/Rogue, Jonothan Starsmore, 2 original characters
Rating: R for extremely bad words; if my mother knew that I knew these
words, I don't even want to imagine what will happen to me
Archive: LeBeau Library, Down-Home Charm, Heart of a Hero; anyone else,
Summary: Marie, her friends and the thoughts that can brew in university.
Disclaimers:Marie/Rogue and Jonothan Starsmore (yes, that's him) belong to
Marvel Entertainment, probably Fox, Brian Singer and his cohorts. I'm not
making any money from this; this is strictly for entertainment. Mira and
Joel are the only original characters; Rhadasquat is a nonexistent band.
Furthermore, there will be a LOT of graphic, offensive words used in this
piece. If you're easily offended by such things, please stop reading right
now. The opinions stated here are not necessarily mine. Feedback is, as
always, craved like chocolate after Lent.
(xeno)katt's aerie: http://www.xeno3kattz.com
"Tyre" is the coolest word in England. If they were going to use a "y" to
signify the sound of a long "i," why not spell it "fyre" or "dyre" or
"conspyre"? But, no, they all use i-consonant-e. Furthermore, if "y"
supposedly always made the long "i" sound to begin with, why put an "e" at
the end? Isn't that kind of redundant?
Jono rolled his eyes when I explained my obsession with the word. "It's just
a bloody spelling anomally. People being too lazy to change a medieval
spelling. Just shut up already!"
We were in the common room of our dorm, on the main floor. The dorm itself
was extremely narrow-- probably just eighteen feet across and twenty deep
with four bedrooms and a bathroom crammed in the top two floors. The common
area was just big enough for a kitchenette, a table, and a couch. Believe it
or not, we were the lucky ones. It was a good thing that the four of us got
along or else there would have been homicide within a week.
"It's just interesting how words change." I shrugged, going back to chewing
on my pen and conjugating French verbs.
"What about 'fag'?" Joel put in, looking up from his copy of Milton. "Why
does 'fag' mean homosexual in North American but it means a cigarette here?"
"Or faggot," added Mira, her face hidden behind a scary pre-med monstrosity
of a textbook. "Isn't a faggot supposed to be a bundle of sticks? What does
that have to do with being gay?"
"Ask Joel." Jono nodded his head and his beer bottle at the guy beside him.
"What does a bundle of sticks have to do with being gay, mate?"
Joel snorted. "I don't know, babe, but once I do, I guarantee I'll be giving
you a lesson."
"So you keep saying." Pushing an artfully tousled lock from his eyes, Jono
flicked away some crocodile tears. "Tease."
Mira pouted. "No fair. You just like him because he's a guy."
"That's usually the case with us flaming homos, dear." Joel reached over to
pat Mira's hand.
"I wouldn't say you're flaming." Leaning back, I bit a finger and squinted.
"You're more left of flaming. A fireplace flame, not a big bonfire flame."
"A Zippo lighter," was Jono's contribution. "You don't wear make-up or
Mira smacked his arm. "Don't be cruel. I think you're more a sparkler
"He has better clothes and can walk better in heels than me," I pointed out.
"That calls for more than a sparkler."
"That's more your problem," said Joel pointing an accusatory finger at my
nose. "I swear, woman, I've got to take you shopping. I don't care if you
absorb half of London, you cannot go on for the rest of your friendship with
me looking like a hag."
Mira and Jono just went into peals of laughter at that.
The four of us becoming friends was a complete fluke. We were like the four
cardinal directions. Listing the differences would take too long. There were
really only two things we had in common; a deep respect for the band,
Rhadasquat and the ability to turn every conversation into something with
As soon as I moved in, I decided to let my roomies know about my power. I
don't know if I was being practical or just trying to get the pain over with
as soon as possible. The first night there, I told them in as much detail as
possible (without implicating the X-Men of course) how my powers worked.
Then I sat back, aching to run to my room in preparation for a lynching.
"Saran wrap," said Joel.
That came out of left field. "What?"
"Saran wrap," he repeated. "Cling film to you Brits. If you had a body suit
made of cling film, you'd still be able to get it on without hurting anyone,
Mira shook her head. "But right in the middle of everything, you'd be
sweating like a pig. That's just disgusting. Not to mention smelly once she
takes the suit off."
"What if we just used bits and pieces of cling film?" Jonothan tapped his
cheek thoughtfully. "That might actually be a bit interesting."
"You can actually stand to do that?" Mira looked at him. Scornfully or
doubtfully, I'm not sure. "Liar."
Jono shrugged. "It was a thought."
"Does that mean you know what sex is like as a man now?" Joel asked.
I blinked, nonplussed. "Uh, I guess. I try to turn that part off."
"What a bloody waste." Jono stuck a cigarette in his mouth. "If I had a girl
running around in my head, I'd milk the information for as much as it was
"Now silk," Mira continued as though no one else had spoken. "I think we can
definitely do places with a full catsuit made of silk."
Joel half-hearted covered a yawn. "Old school. They've been using that one
since silk was discovered. We could go for the classic
His head and hands wagging in disagreement, Jono said, "Vinyl is dead. I'm
sticking to my bits of cling film."
Most likely, they were trying to cover up their surprise. I sure as hell
expected to wake up to the twilight zone the next day. By now, though, it
was little beans. I might as well complain about my hair colour.
Back in the present, I was seriously trying to concentrate on Rousseau but
my mind kept straying back to more important subjects.
"What about cunt?" I said suddenly.
"I like 'em, too," replied Jono.
"Like a bloody adaptor, aren't you?" Mira muttered.
"Too hairy, too soft, and smells like bad tuna an hour after you wash 'em,"
was Joel's contribution.
Using Mira's eraser, I bopped Jono between the eyes. "I meant the word, you
asses. Did you know that 'cunt' was a polite term for female genitalia in
the fifteenth century?"
"Back to linguistics, are we?" Bending his head closer to his guitar, Jono
licked his fingers and tried another chord.
"What made 'cunt' go from a polite word to a bad one?" I closed my text,
certain that I wouldn't be able to do anything until this burning question
"What made 'bloody' go from an extreme expletive to something you use to
cover up an extreme expletive?" Mira flipped a page over. "It's in the
delivery. Joel doesn�t mind that we call him a flaming homosexual, do you
"Only if you mean a Zippo flame," replied Joel. "I'd take that as a serious
affront. I fully intend to be a Chicago-fire type of gay."
"It's just a word," sighed Jono impatiently. "Words are stupid. They're...
they're useless. Practically, anyway."
"Words are essential," argued Joel. Then again, Joel and Jono argue about
everything. "Information trade. Literature. Singing." He gave Jono's guitar
a pointed nod.
Peering briefly over the image of a the digestive system, Mira said,
"Rhadasquat's words are keen."
"They're dumb. Words, not Rhadasquat," Jono hurried to clarify. "I could
take any pop lyric for a love song and spout it to the next person who
crosses my path. Does that mean I'm sincere?"
"Delivery," Mira insisted. She put her book down this time, not bothering to
pretend to study. "Lady Chatterley's Lover. D.H. Lawrence. Uses rather blunt
words but are more affective because of it. He uses 'cunt'," she told me.
I made a mental note to read Lady Chatterley's Lover.
"And now no one gives a shit." Jono played a stacatto riff.
"But they banned it for thirty years," said Joel.
"That's in the eye of the reader."
"Delivery, exactly!" Mira pounded her fist on the table. "Dammit, just
because I'm a natural blonde, you all bloody ignore me. See if I mention any
of you in my Nobel Prize speech, you manky berks."
Jono laughed, going from dour to [happy] in a sneeze. He kissed Mira's
forehead. "Yes, madam. You know all. You are all. Why are the prats making
you go to school when you can obviously teach them a thing or two."
"Damn nilly, I can."
"So if I use cunt," I said slowly, savouring the word, "but I mean it in a
non-confrontational way, it keeps it from being offensive?"
Joel shrugged. "I guess. Like black guys back home calling each other
"To their parents' horror no doubt," commented Mira. to me, she said, "Use
cunt. It'll be like �damn� or �bloody�; the more it's used, the less harmful
it becomes. Cunt, cunt. cunt, cunt. cunt."
"Or blonde." Joel dropped his book as well. "I'm a blonde, you're a blonde,
everyone's a blonde, blonde."
"Yeah!" Mira pounded the table with her fist. "I hereby officially take back
the term blonde. From now on, I wear the damned label with pride. I'm a
blonde cunt. Jono's a pretty cock, Joel's a--"
"A faggy cock. A faggy Bombay dock." He giggled, looking as if he'd just put
a whoopie cushion in the substitute teacher's chair. "My parents would shit
bricks if they heard that."
"And I'm the mutie cunt." My smile stretched to my ears. "Let's make
"Or a banner." Jono framed an imaginary sign. "Welcome to #5 Briar Terrace,
home of the Cunts and Cocks. Leave all political correctness at the door."
"As well as superfluous articles of clothing," added Joel.
"Anything outside of a condom is superfluous to you." That comment garnered
me an eraser aimed at my nose. I turned my head and it hit my ear instead,
snagging on my earrings. "Ow!"
"I�ve got a question for you, Miss Language Major.� Joel poised to throw
another eraser-- where�d he get them all, anyway? �Why do all expletives
consist of four letters?�
�It does not.� Mira listed words off on her fingers. �Fag, git, mutie...�
�Queer,� inserted Jono.
�Thank you.� Mira gave his addition a nod. �Gene joke, bitch...�
I put a hand on my heart and the other over my mouth. �Do you kiss your
daddy with a mouth like that?�
Jono pursed his lips and pushed a dimple into his chin. �Her dad would coo
and call her precious, wouldn�t he?�
Mira only shrugged, smirking.
�Monosyllabic then.� Joel really wanted to get back on the topic, tapping
the table surface with his index and middle fingers. "Why are most of them
"It comes off the mouth easier," I said. "In the heat of the moment with
your temper popping, how are you supposed to come up with 'fie upon thee,
thou goatish, tardy-gaited pumpion!'"
"Pumpion? Mira and Joel echoed.
"Pumpion." I pronounced each consonant with relish.
Joel's nose wrinkled. "Sounds like something obscene that happened in a
"Right up her boat then," Mira said.
I flipped her the finger.
"So?" Joel looked at us all.
Jono let out a sigh, nibbling a bit on his guitar pick. "Well, it's easier
for anyone with half a brain cell to spell when they make hate flyers." He
started grunting. "Me hate muties. Me hate queers. Kill veggies."
Mira snorted. "You're an idiot."
"You're an idiot."
"You're still an idiot."
"I can accept that." He went back to plucking at his guitar but not without
throwing me a half-hearted glare. "Now you've got Joel going on about
"It's interesting." I pressed Rousseau open.
"You're tapped." Jono leaned over to rap his knuckles on my head. "That
mutant gene playing havoc with your brain."
Mira swatted Jono's arm several times. "Oh, shut up and go back to your Noel
Gallagher imitation. It's slightly less annoying than the real you."
We put the sign up the next day.
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