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FIC: X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies, PG-13, Chpt 16

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  • Kathleen
    X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies - Chapter 16 - Winding Down Rating: PG-13 By: Kath713/Leen713 Summary: (See Book 1: Prologue) Disclaimer: I own nothing
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 10, 2004
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      X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies - Chapter 16 - Winding Down

      Rating: PG-13

      By: Kath713/Leen713

      Summary: (See Book 1: Prologue)

      Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with characters from the Marvel
      universe or any previously published work.


      Chapter 16:

      As afternoon faded into evening, Rogue pushed the large door to the
      kitchen outward with a sigh and walked into the hall. She had just
      finished helping the last few younger students clean up and put away
      their dinner dishes and she was near exhausted after such a busy

      Typically, weekends around the mansion were quiet and relaxing (at
      least for the students), but Rogue's duties included more than
      her studies, and she had been working in the lab with Bobby and Dr.
      McCoy for most of the day. As much as she disliked kitchen detail,
      at least it was better than being cooped up in the lower levels for

      Rogue stretched her gloved arms up over her head and yawned. The
      evening light was shining diagonally through the tall windows,
      throwing long shadows along the floor. As she reached the end of
      the hall, she could hear the sounds of a loosely organized baseball
      game out on one of the back lawns.

      Strolling out the large back porch doors, Rogue could see about
      twenty of her classmates, young and not-as-young, spread out next on
      a makeshift diamond. The day was getting chilly as the sun started
      to set, and a few still wore jackets when playing outside.

      Peter was standing in centerfield, calling quick orders to his
      teammates, while Kitty and Tracy were sitting in their
      `dugout' doing fairly good impersonations of him. Blink was
      standing on the pitcher's mound, looking a little nervous through
      his round spectacles, but the other players on the field called to
      him encouragingly. They usually rotated positions, so each had a
      turn pitching, though it had been systematically decided last summer
      that Peter would keep his strong arm in the outfield, which he
      grudgingly agreed to after breaking the wooden bats of three
      hitters...in a row.

      Rogue walked down a few paces towards the lawn and sat down on the
      stone steps. She leaned her chin in one palm and smiled softly as
      she watched her friends. It had been such a long, sad winter for
      them all, she was glad to see a little life coming back into the

      After a few moments, she glanced to her left and noticed Kurt
      perching quietly on the stone ledge that lined the large bricked
      patio. He was gazing in the direction of the game, but his eyes
      looked thoughtful and distant. He was crouching, resting his arms
      on his knees, his hands steepled at the fingertips.

      Behind him, the sky was slowing fading to a deep orange as the sun
      set, and he was silhouetted against the light. He sat almost
      completely motionless and, if not for the lazy movements of his
      tail, Rogue could have easily confused him for a dark, watchful
      statue. She noticed his rosary hanging loosely around his neck, and
      she knew he was not praying, just thinking.

      Rogue stood and walked over to where her friend sat. Out of all the
      mutants who had come to the mansion over the past eight months, she
      was still the closest to Kurt. She had spent a lot of time just
      chitchatting with him, and he always seemed to appreciate every
      moment of conversation he had with anyone. He had lived in solitude
      for a long time, and though it had not made him cold or bitter to
      the world, his long unattended thirst for simple human interaction
      made him a quick and loyal friend.

      "Hey, Kurt," Rogue said as she approached him. Kurt blinked,
      surprised out of his thoughts and then gave her a bright grin.

      "Oh, hello," he replied, "Dinner all finished?"

      "Yep, every last kiddo fed," she said, and then grinned,
      "Including me."

      "And most are already running it off," he added as the crack
      of a bat, followed by a small group of cheers, filled the air.

      They both chuckled as they watched Kitty Pryde run through the first
      baseman, whose team suddenly called foul to the `no powers'
      rule that most games at the mansion had. Tracy was jumping up and
      down along the third base, urging Jamie to `split up, boyo' to
      earn her team a few extra points.

      Kurt glanced over at Rogue curiously, "How was the work with the
      doctor today?"

      Rogue shrugged, "Not too bad. Lots of paperwork for the kids
      medical charts but he kept us pretty entertained. Plus when we took
      lil' Melinda down for her check-up, she kept calling him
      `Sulley,' for some reason..."

      Kurt laughed, "That is from that movie they watched last month.
      You know...with the monsters and the doors..."

      "Oh...right..." Rogue said with wide eyes, "I hope that
      didn't bother him too much..."

      "I doubt it," Kurt replied, still grinning, "He seems
      like a very understanding man. If I remember, he found the
      similarity quite amusing himself."

      Rogue nodded and looked relieved. She knew many of the others joked
      about their mutations openly, like Siryn or Kitty, and though it was
      never malicious, Rogue could not imagine talking about her power in
      such a way. Even Kurt made the occasional quip about his tail, but
      for her it was just too difficult.

      "Did Storm say when they would be gettin' back?" Rogue
      asked, and Kurt shook his head.

      "No, but I don't think they expected to stay long," he
      replied, "Ms. Monroe did not say the girl was returning with

      "Actually, she is," a new voice called. Rogue grinned as
      Bobby walked up next to them. He slung one arm casually over her
      shoulder and pointed at the sky.

      "Cyclops just radioed from the jet..." he explained,
      "Said to get a single room ready for a new guest."

      Kurt nodded with a smile, and Rogue looked over at the field
      thoughtfully. With how frequently new arrivals were coming to the
      mansion, she figured the Professor would need to start building
      additions to the dorms.

      Bobby and Kurt began talking about the training sessions in the
      Danger Room that had been scheduled for next week. Rogue listened
      vaguely, and folded her arms. Storm had insisted Rogue also choose
      a time to meet for training, though Rogue was not sure how the
      elaborate facility could help her control her power.

      She was not like Bobby or Kurt or Peter, whose gifts could be seen,
      manipulated and made useful. Her gift was not a gift, simply a
      complicated and uncontainable way to take what did not belong to

      Inwardly, she almost felt as if her power made her an unwilling
      thief. And she would not touch someone, not take their very life
      force, just for the very unlikely chance she would learn a little
      bit of control. She would not risk someone else's life like that.

      Suddenly, a wail from the baseball field drew her from her
      thoughts. Bobby moved quickly down the steps and across the field,
      and Rogue followed, hearing from behind her the soft, strange noise
      that accompanied Kurt's teleportation.

      On the grass, Blink was sitting near `home plate,' cradling
      his arm and wincing in pain. Kurt was already at his side when
      Bobby and Rogue caught up. He held the boy's arm and had Blink
      move his hand experimentally. Kurt patted the boy's head

      "Just twisted, I think," he said, "But better go see the
      doctor anyway."

      "What happened?" Rogue asked, and Kitty looked between her
      friend and the boy with concern.

      "He was trying to slide into home…guess he tripped and came
      down on his arm."

      Blink sniffed unhappily and nodded, as Kurt helped him to his feet.
      The other children had formed a loose circle around the fallen
      player. Bobby put an encouraging hand on Blink's shoulder.

      "Think you can walk down with me?" he asked, and when Blink
      sniffed and nodded again, Bobby grinned, "Ok, let's go then.
      Did you at least get to the plate?"

      "Damn right he did!" Siryn said, giving Blink a grin as he
      walked past, "Don't worry, kid, the doc'll fix you up
      good. Hurry back, though! You're the only pitcher on Peter's
      worth spit!"

      Blink grinned back and headed up towards the house with Bobby.
      Rogue touched Bobby's arm lightly with appreciation as he walked
      past. Standing here, surrounded by her friends, she realized she
      was happier than she had been in a long time, despite all of her
      other worries.

      "Guess the game's over…let's pack up," Peter
      said. The sun had set,
      and the first stars had begun to appearing in the darkening sky.
      The kids gathered their things and started to head inside.

      The lights along the patio flickered to life one at a time and Rogue
      folded her arms around her and shivered, sadly admitting to herself
      that is was not quite spring. Kurt was ushering the last few
      students inside, promising the enthusiastic youngsters to make
      snacks for whatever movie they planned to watch.

      Rogue was following the crowd up to the second floor, when Bobby
      appeared from the elevator with a much less disheveled Blink and
      followed by Henry McCoy.

      "Well," the doctor began with a grin, "Let's hope
      that closes up shop for the night. No diving for the popcorn, young

      "I'll reach with my good arm!" Blink said before charging
      up the stairs past Rogue, waving his Ace-Bandaged wrist like a
      trophy. They heard his pounding steps reach the second floor common
      room, where he was greeting by Siryn like a returning war veteran.

      "Gonna watch the movie with us, Doc?" Bobby asked the taller
      man, who shook his head.

      "No, I have a few things I want to straighten up in my classroom
      before turning in," Henry said, "But I'll check in on
      Blink one more time before he heads to bed. Thank you both again
      for your help today. I'll see you in the morning…"

      With that, Rogue and Bobby both said good night to the doctor as he
      wandered happily towards the school rooms. Hand in hand, the pair
      headed up the steps together to join their friends.
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