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FIC: Old Friend, 11/13, Charles/Erik, NC-17, post X2

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  • Henrika
    Chapter 11 In the afternoon Charles heard knocks on his door again. He remembered yesterday with fear, thinking back at Sabretooth and what he had done. It
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 25, 2003
      Chapter 11

      In the afternoon Charles heard knocks on his door again. He
      remembered yesterday with fear, thinking back at Sabretooth and what
      he had done. It wasn't Sabretooth again, was it?

      "Who is it?" he called anxiously.

      "It's John," replied a familiar and slightly insecure voice. "Can I
      come in?"

      Charles breathed a sigh of relief. Okay. John. He was supposed to
      come today. Right.

      "Yes, John. Come on in," he called back.

      A key was stuck into the lock and turned – Erik still insisted on
      keeping the door locked – and John entered. He quickly closed the
      door behind him and when he turned around Charles could see he was
      carrying a tray.

      The boy tried to smile. "Good afternoon, professor Xavier," he said
      while approaching the bed. "Erik told me to make you a meal…"

      He nodded at the tray he was carrying. On it was a plate with two
      hamburgers, a small bowl of salad and a glass of mineral water.

      John's smile became apologetic. "I'm sorry if you don't… But this is
      all I can make."

      Charles smiled back at his former student. "Good afternoon, John.
      You're right in assuming I don't usually eat hamburgers, but that
      really looks delicious."

      "Well…I've never been much of a cook…" John murmured and gently set
      the tray down on Charles' bedside table.

      "No, I remember domestic science was never your best subject,"
      Charles agreed. "But I do appreciate your kind gesture."

      Charles was happy that Erik had provided him with some clothes
      before he saw John. He was presently wearing a deep blue silk
      pyjama, which really belonged to Erik but was never used by him. At
      last it made him look a little more presentable than naked skin.

      John sat down in a chair next to the bed. He wasn't really sure what
      to do or say now. This was his first encounter with the professor
      since he hooked up with Magneto, and although he knew Xavier wasn't
      able to use his telepathy right now, he still felt very inferior to
      the wheelchair-bound man. Why did he even want to see Xavier in the
      first place?

      "How are you?" he finally asked.

      "I have been better, thank you," replied Charles. "As you see, I was
      beat up pretty badly. But I'm well, according to the circumstances.
      Erik has taken very good care of me."

      "That's good… I was really worried."

      "I understand that, John. But there is no reason to be. I will make
      a full recovery."

      John hesitated before he asked his next question. "What about your
      telepathy? Will you get your telepathy back?"

      "No one knows for sure," Charles replied seriously. "But Erik said
      my chances are good, and I hope he is right. A life without my power
      feels very empty."

      John squirmed. "But… Why did you even lose your telepathy in the
      first place?" he asked carefully.

      "It must be an injury due to the concussion I sustained," said

      John nodded. He didn't know what to say next. He knew that he, being
      a Brotherhood member, should be hoping Xavier never regained his
      telepathic abilities. He was technically an enemy. It was
      ridiculous, of course, and John knew that. He would never think of
      the professor or his students as his "enemies", no matter what

      "Maybe you should eat… The food's getting cold," John muttered and
      stuck his hand into his pocket to finger on his lighter.

      "Yes, I will, don't worry," the professor replied smiling. "Where is
      Erik, by the way? He never told me where he was going."

      "He's working," John said. "With Mystique, down in the lab."

      "Really? What is he doing there?"

      John shrugged. "I don't know that. But even if I knew I probably
      wouldn't understand that much."

      "I know, Erik is a very technical person," Charles agreed. "Without
      his help building Cerebro would have been impossible."

      He smiled at the memory. In fact, Erik had done most of the work,
      and Charles simply had the advantage of being able to use their
      invention. Suddenly Charles glimpsed something that caught his
      interest. John was carrying a cell phone at his hip, attached to his
      belt. An idea started to form in his head.

      Erik had not let him use any telephone, and probably it would take a
      while before he did, and all Charles wanted was to contact his
      students and let them know he was safe and alive.

      Maybe John would lend him his cell phone, just for a little while…?

      Charles decided to ask him straight out. "John, would you mind
      lending me you cell phone?" he asked, trying not to sound too eager
      or desperate.

      The boy looked surprised. "My cell phone? Why, professor?"

      "I need to make a phone call," Charles replied. He didn't feel
      comfortable using John, but he could definitely not tell him that
      Erik refused to let him call the mansion. If John knew that was the
      case he would not lend him his telephone either.

      The professor's reply didn't make John any wiser, but he realized
      how impolite it would be to refuse. He just wanted to use the phone,
      after all.

      "Sure, you can borrow it," he said and unhooked the phone from his
      belt. "But the battery is almost out. I think I forgot to recharge

      Charles accepted the little cell phone; a Nokia 3310, and noticed
      that John was right. There wasn't much power left in it. Maybe it
      would last through a short call. At the most.

      Charles cursed his bad luck, but not audibly. If he started to swear
      now – something he never did before his students – he would probably
      scare John or arouse his curiosity. Instead he smiled at the boy and
      thanked him warmly. At least he had a chance now.

      "Er… You want me to go outside while you're talking?" John asked.

      "Yes please, that would be kind of you," replied Charles. "Wait
      outside for five minutes. I think I'll be done then."


      John got up and left the room. Charles looked down at the little
      cell phone in his hand. Now…

      The dialled the number to the Xavier-institute. He knew it by heart.
      Charles had a very good memory and the ability to keep many
      important numbers and names in his head. He would never forget the
      number to his own school, no matter what happened.

      Two signals. Three. Charles' heart rate increased and his breathing
      grew ragged as he waited. Finally a female voice answered the phone.

      "The Xavier-institute, Ororo Munroe."

      It was Storm. She sounded tired and sad, since she obviously hadn't
      gotten much sleep lately.

      "Ororo!" Charles called. "It's me. Could you…"

      Suddenly the reception grew worse. The phone started buzzing and the
      call almost went dead. Ororo's voice started fading away, but before
      it did, Charles could grasp some of what she said. She sounded both
      excited and frightened.

      "Professor?" she exclaimed. "Is that you, Charles? Charles? Char…"

      "Ororo! Can you hear me? It *is* me! Please…"

      But he heard nothing more and Ororo's voice disappeared completely
      when the call went dead. In vain Charles tried to renew the
      connection but there was really no power left. The last thing he
      heard was Ororo's fervent and anxious voice, calling his name. Then
      she was gone.

      Charles held the phone to his ear for almost a minute after the
      connection was broken, hoping that it somehow would return. Of
      course it didn't. This had been his best chance so far, and now it
      was gone.

      His disappointment was so huge he almost began to cry. He cursed his
      own bad luck and also John's cell phone. Why couldn't the boy make
      sure to keep his battery charged? Didn't he realize how important it
      could be sometimes?

      He was still staring down at his own hands when he heard a knock on
      the door again. Apparently his five minutes had passed.

      "Yes, John, you can come in," Charles called with a sigh.

      John opened the door and entered.

      "Did you make your call?" he asked carefully.

      Charles decided not to tell him the truth. He mustn't make Pyro

      "Yes," he replied. "I did. Thank you for the use of your phone."

      He handed his former student his cell phone back, and when John
      accepted it he saw that it was out of power.

      "Did you really have time?" he asked. "There's no power left."

      "I got to say what was important."

      "That's good…"

      Charles forced himself to smile. He had no reason whatsoever to
      curse John. The boy had been kind and at least tried to help him. He
      simply had no luck, and there was nothing more he could do now,
      anyway. When Erik returned Charles was going to have a serious word
      with him and request a telephone.

      John was looking down at his feet. He suspected something was wrong,
      but he didn't have the courage to ask the professor.

      "I should go now…" he murmured and started to rise. "Maybe you'd
      like to rest."

      "You can stay, John. It's alright," Charles said. "It's quite lonely
      in here until Erik shows up."

      "No, I… I have homework left to do," John hurried to say. "I'd love
      to stay, but…"

      Charles smiled. "Of course you should do your homework," he
      said. "Erik can be a demanding teacher, but don't let him run you
      over. In case he gives you too much to do, remember to object."

      John couldn't help laughing. "Yeah, I'll remember that, but Erik
      doesn't like to be contradicted!"

      "No, I know that, but you have to be firm. It's in Erik's nature to
      be dominant. I have known him long enough to know that."

      "It's okay, I'm fine…" John murmured.

      "Of course you are. I never meant to imply that you aren't."

      John nodded. "I see. I… I guess I'll leave you alone, then."

      He placed his hand atop the older man's and gave it a brief squeeze,
      because he couldn't think of a better way to say goodbye to the

      "Goodbye, John," said Charles. "Stop by some other time if you feel
      like it. I believe I'm going to stay here for yet some time.

      John started approaching the door, but then suddenly spun around and

      "Do you like it here, professor Xavier?"

      "Erik has treated me very well," Charles replied seriously.

      "Well, that's great… I hope you'll recover in due time."

      John left and locked the door, just like Erik had told him to do. He
      couldn't quite understand why, though. A paralysed man could hardly
      escape or anything, now could he?
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