X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies - Chapter 11 - The Toughest Choice
is the One You've Already Made
Summary: (See Book 1: Prologue)
Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with characters from the Marvel
universe or any previously published work.
Mary escorted their guests outside and watched them closely. She
wished she was able to remember something about this, maybe then she
would not have been terrified about what they were about to show her.
The woman called Storm stepped away from the group and raised her
hands above her head.
With quiet wonder, Mary watched as clouds began to gather in the
clear morning sky. Something in her felt the earth respond as the
woman began to create rain clouds over the desert.
Above the small jet, the clouds broke and a small patch of rain
began to fall. Small streaks of lightning ran across the sky, and
Mary felt the wind sigh as it blew past her ears. The entirely
unnatural occurrence did not feel unnatural to her and the dry
ground took in the water greedily as it fell.
Mary glanced over at Storm, and suddenly felt unnerved. The
woman's eyes had lost all their color and were glowing with a
strange white light. She took a nervous step backwards, transfixed
on the woman's form against the dark clouds.
"Miss Sloane?" a concerned voice made her jump and she
glanced around quickly.
The rain died away, and the sun shone brightly once again.
The Professor was next to her and she glanced down at him.
"Sorry," Mary said, "Just
surprising. I had no idea mutants could do things like that."
"That and more," Scott said with a reassuring grin,
"Every one is unique."
"Oh," Mary said, then added defensively, "And you think
you can help me learn about my gifts
"Yes, we do," Xavier said, "If you would like us to."
Mary sighed, and folded her arms. She slowly walked a few steps
away from her guests and looked across the land towards the
mountains. She was weighing her next words carefully, frustrated by
what she knew these people wanted to ask.
They could be as tactful as they wanted. Her visions always ended
the same way...
A few moments passed before she could speak again.
"You..." she began, and then sighed and turned to face
them, "You...want me to go back with you."
Xavier smiled knowingly, "That is one option, yes. You are, of
course, always free to simply stay in contact with us by phone or e-
mail. Most mutants we contact choose to stay at their homes,
knowing they have the opportunity to come to the school if they feel
their powers are becoming unmanageable..."
"Yes, but you want me to go back with you now, right?" she asked
firmly, but with growing agitation, "That's why you came out
here, Professor, isn't it?"
"We simply came to you because you asked," Xavier said
calmly, "To give you any assistance we can..."
Mary shook her head, "That's not what I mean. I mean, you,
yourself, Professor. You came out here specifically because you
think I should come to your school."
"Why do you say that?" he asked.
Mary sighed, "You know why. You know cause Nana explained to you
what's been happening to me. What's always happened to
She glanced around at the patient faces watching her, and finally
settled again on the Professor. His gaze never wavered, as he
waited for her to put her own mutation in her own words.
"I see things," she said, "Things in the past, things in
the future...things that are happening right now. The Elders call
them `visions' but the feelings I get are more than that. I
know things and I don't know why. What people are
doing, what they feel, where they're going. Sometimes I'll
talking to someone and realize I already had the conversation
because I `saw' it weeks before. Then I get
frustrated...like I am
now...because I know you wanted to ask me to come back to your
school from the moment you found me but you're all too polite to
just say it. Now I have to wait through a conversation I've
had to finally answer a question I don't have an answer for."
Mary took a deep breath and closed her eyes. She had not meant to
just spill everything out like that. Especially on people who are
just trying to do some good in the world.
"But," she finally said, opening her eyes again, "I knew
you decided to join Mr. Summers and Ms. Monroe because, for whatever
reason, you think I should come back."
Xavier stared at the girl for a moment, a curious frown creasing his
"The vision changed," she continued, "For weeks, I've
been seeing the two of you. Same old routine, you visit, you ask
questions, you head home. But two days ago, the vision changed.
Suddenly, there were three, and I was going to have to make a
Mary trembled as she spoke, but not from another wave of her gift.
Just weeks worth of tension flowing out of her. Now, for her own
"I want to know, before I do decide..." she said, and then
continued slowly, "Is it because you think I'm dangerous? Is
that why you want me to go?"
Her face grew stony, "People here think I am. The Elders,
they've seen things but they won't tell me. I know
you're a psychic, Professor Xavier, I know you can see things
So tell me...am I dangerous?"
A sudden anxiety (which Xavier felt was closer to fear) filled
So that's why she was so worried to meet us, the Professor
thought, She thinks we're here to cart her off to some institute
for unstable mutants. She thinks I've seen something in her that
might be a threat to others.
Xavier smiled with honest relief and shook his head.
"No, I don't think you are," he replied, watching the
girl blink with surprise, "You are right, however, that I chose
to come myself because I would like you to return to the school with
us. Your gift seems very strong, Mary...these `visions' that
you have, something like precognition. Your grandmother told us
they've become more difficult for you to control recently, and we
would like to help you learn to manage them without suffering the
overwhelming effects she described."
He noticed the girl shifting uncomfortably, but Xavier's remained
steadfast and confident.
"I may have concerns about your own safety, but I don't think
you are a danger to anyone else," he said, and then added with
amusement, "Except lottery officials, perhaps..."
Mary laughed then, a quiet and nervous sound, but her own relief at
Xavier's words was obvious. She looked around at her guests and
"Thank you," she said, "And don't worry about those
lottery guys...Nana would kill me if she caught me cheating like
Mary's face grew dark then, and she glanced back to the house
where she had lived her entire life.
"And I appreciate the offer, Professor," she said, and then
met his eyes again, "But I can't. I can't leave my
grandmother right now. She hurt her leg last year and it's tough
for her to get around. She's...she's not well.
Mary turned quickly and walked off towards the house, leaving her
guests behind. Scott took a step forward, but Xavier halted him
with one hand and shook his head.
"Give her a moment...It must be her decision."
Mary walked away guiltily, staring at the ground as she moved.
She knew it was disrespectful to just turn ones back on someone, but
she also knew this was the only chance she would have to stay. She
did not want to leave home, she had never been anywhere else, and
part of her was terrified of being anywhere else but here.
Thoughts and voices rose in her mind, demanding she stop and go
back. This is not the way it was supposed to go. She was meant to
move on from this place. Each step towards the house was a struggle
with herself, but Mary fought against those urges with thoughts of
her grandmother, thoughts of her responsibilities to her family.
Mary reached the front door and stepped through. She nearly fell on
her face as she tripped on something lying just inside the house.
It was soft, but seemed very heavy.
She glanced down...and with wide eyes noticed two suitcases blocking
her way. Mary gaped in surprise and glanced up as her Nana walked
from the back bedrooms with an armload of clothes. Mary could tell
that the older woman had been crying, but now Nana's eyes were
dry and her jaw set in her task.
"Nana," Mary said, "What are you doing?"
"Packing your things," she said simply, looking at Mary as if
that had been a very silly question.
"Nana...how did..." Mary said with a frown, "No...please,
stop. I'm not going anywhere..."
"Of course you are," Nana replied, "You always
now, go get what you need..."
"No," Mary nearly shouted, "No, I'm won't. I
Nana put her hands on her hips, "And why not?"
"I won't just leave you here," Mary replied, "Nana,
"Your Nana..." the older woman began, "...is a grown
woman who can take care of herself."
Nana walked up to Mary and stared up at her, waving one finger
scoldingly. The gesture was almost comical though Mary would never
"You think you are the only one who knows things," she began,
"Or do you forget who raised you all these years? Hmm? I know
things. I know more about you than anyone else, Mary-Rose. I know
why you are afraid. Your mama...she bring you here to us because
she think we can help you, because she couldn't find help in her
own church. She always believed the answers would come to you in
time. But, there's nothing else you can learn here. The Elders
have been silent for too long and they are too old to change their
ways. They fear you, my Rose. And that is their weakness. But,
those people, out there, they don't have that fear."
Nana put a hand to Mary's cheek, which was now damp with tears of
"When your mama found me and your papa, we knew the child she
carried was blessed...was gifted. You have the light that shines in
the darkest places, though you can't see it yet. Ten years ago,
that light was lost...now you must find it again, however difficult
the journey will be."
Mary collapsed into the old woman's arms and wept. Her tears
were bitter in her throat. It was not fair. Why should she have to
leave everything she knows? Why do the answers always need to be
found so far away?
"I...I don't...understand..." she said through her sobs
and her Nana stroked her hair lovingly.
"You will, My Rose," she said with a shining smiled, "You