Title: Skin Diving Isn't The Rage (Some Kind of Boy story
author: Tara Ann
summary: John realizes Faith isn't love, gets the Logan lecture,
stays up late with Rogue. X2/Buffy/Angel/Tru Calling crossover
doesn't need to know Faith to read the story.
Rating/warning & pairing: NC-17 for brief sexual content.
Pyro/Faith, Pyro/Logan (not sexual), Pyro/Rogue
*Characters do not belong to me.
** I've liked Pyro from the first moment I saw him in X2.
complex with confidence and vulnerability. I only hope I give St.
John Allerdyce the respect and understanding he deserves. He is the
boy with the soft edges and the palest pout.
He had never been in a morgue before, he'd seen them on the
television, but it was where Faith worked. If the dead spoke to him
he knew he would have put himself into the cuckoo's nest. John
mutant; mutants were real, they were the miracle of evolution. How
could vampires and talking dead people be real? Faith really
believed in it and he wasn't going to take that away from her.
was kind of pissed, though, because if there were demons and evil law
firms doing bad things in the world it would be blamed on mutants.
"Can I help you?" said Davis, Faith's boss and recent
friend and confidant; he was trustworthy with a beard and a good
"I'm just looking for Faith," said John.
"Aren't we all," Davis said. "You're her
Davis looked him over suspiciously; Faith hadn't mentioned
anyone new to him and in the morgue things had to be kept secret. He
wanted to get back to his ham and American cheese sandwich, but these
were very cautious times.
"I'm her boyfriend."
The introduction startled Davis. Faith was everything a guy
could want intelligent, tough, determined, loyal to her
and lushly beautiful. The girl was stunning in nature and Davis
figured he didn't have any romantic chance with her, but he was
old for her, anyway. She needed someone her own style and here the
matching guy was, so why had she neglected to mention it?
"I'm not here to spy," he said.
Faith appeared from another room, wearing a white lab coat with her
signed identification badge pinned on. Behind her was a bleached
blond man, good-looking, very well-fit, with good cheekbones and a
scar above his left eyebrow.
"John," said Faith. "What are you doing here?"
"Just wanted to see you," he said.
Words like those usually were meant to sound sweet and
romantic, but they seemed hidden.
"You must be Faith's fire boy toy," said the bleach
man, Spike, he had an English accent bordering on Cockney Sid Vicious.
"Yeah," John said, sounding uncertain. "Fire boy
Spike turned to Faith. "So don't forget to pick up Emily.
I'd ask Darla, but she'll forever be hesitant and I'm
tired of paying
Connor to do it."
"I don't forget," Faith said.
Spike walked past John and Davis and disappeared through the
doors. John could have never known that Spike was a vampire and
Davis still had trouble getting used to the idea. He wondered
though, if vampires existed then maybe Middle-earth existed
somewhere. Maybe it took a wormhole to find it and maybe he could
hook up with someone like Chiana.
"It's okay Davis. John is good and five by five."
Davis wondered if her brother Harrison had met this John
fellow, either potential knight in her quest for some kind of true
love or another dating disaster waiting to explode and unravel no
matter how many days she relived. And how could she be so certain
this John guy wasn't involved with Jack, the opposing power?
Faith gestured behind her and John followed her into the
John immediately got goosebumps and looked at the cold empty metal
"I don't like this. Where are the dead bodies?"
"They're in the draws," Faith said.
"Are there a lot of them?"
Faith smiled. "You're safe. Wanna see them?"
"No. I don't like this," he said, slipping his hand
pocket of his brown leather jacket, his fingers petting the smooth
surface of his shark-mouthed lighter.
"What's wrong? Come here to confess?" Her horizontal
dropped eye glistened brown and teased him, her raspberry glossed
smile complimenting the look.
"No," he said. "I was gonna make you a sandwich, but
wasn't any bread or mayonnaise."
"What else don't you like?"
"I don't like to fly," said John. Then he kissed her
She started to laugh her sexy raspy laugh. "You came here to
You could have brought some strawberry Twizzlers, I've got the
He traced the silver heart pendant around her neck.
"I don't know," he said. "I don't know if I can
do it in here. It's
"Not so creepy," Faith said. "I've done creepy."
His dark eyes stared into hers and he couldn't tell her what he
wanted to tell her. That when he told her he loved her that night in
the restaurant he didn't really mean it. Not in the way he
have; he didn't really know what way he did. Instead he kissed
and unbuttoned her jeans, sliding his hand where he could feel her.
His first sexual experience, not including masturbation or the girl
in high school, had been with Storm. He couldn't remember if he
drunk but she most definitely had not been. All the women in the
mansion were beautiful and it was hard not to fantasize about them.
The thing about women that he had realized was that they had so many
layered orgasms that made them fascinating and sometimes overwhelming
to be with. Women, in a sense, were impenetrable.
With her eyes closed and her gentle moans consuming her breath, he
fingered her, content in knowing that whatever real secret women
cherished between their legs, he was quickly discovering hers. He
felt himself become hard and despite the unsettling location, his
urge and desire couldn't be ignored.
Faith helped him remove her jeans and blue cotton panties. Then he
undid his own pants and penetrated her fast, deep, and more confident
than he ever had felt before. With her back against the metal draws
and him holding her legs around his hips, they fucked without
ridicule, and with every squeeze she gave him he pushed harder, his
usual non-verbal orgasmic expression, though still silent, ever
changing with primal intensity.
The Slayer in nature was a killer, born and bred to slay vamp booty;
death was her gift. The duel side to such a nature was extreme
sexual sensitivity and delicate warmth. Faith coaxed him into her,
her arms embracing him into her body; head-on collisions were her
favorite kind, whether pertaining to the flesh or fists.
When he came, releasing everything he didn't feel like concerning
himself with, he wondered how deeply she could feel inside him
without questions and grabbing. He and Faith were sexual compatible
more than he ever imagined was possible for two people; it was the
one thing they always expected from each other, but could they fall
in love? She seemed like she was clinging to something hopeless or
was it blind hopefulness? John didn't cling to anything, just
jealously, anger, intangible desires, and learned loathing.
"That was something," Faith smiled. "Jawbreaking, more
the Ballard's on the balcony."
He smiled for her, pushing her long brunette waves away from her
collarbone. John licked his lips and let her go.
"What's your favorite flower?"
"Daffodils," she said, "with rosemary. I don't
really feel like I'm
in control when I'm with you."
"Is that bad?"
"I'm not sure," Faith said.
One of Wolverine's mutant qualities was precise hearing and right
he heard careless scurrying coming from the parking garage. When he
got there he saw John sitting in the driver's seat of Scott's
blue Mazda RX8.
"Unless you're sabotaging Cyclops's car and planning to
run, you have
some explaining to do," Logan said.
He opened the car door and stared at John. The boy stared
back, dark eyes unblinking.
"I have nothing to explain, not to you, not to anyone here."
"Are you spying on us here?" Logan said.
"We saw you on the TV, your elbow anyway, but we know it was
Logan's voice was like his looks, handsome, strong, and
he saw his chance and he was going to take it.
"I was stealing Cyclops's car," said John, looking down.
"Great, and I'd get the blame," said Logan. "Not
really matters. There's a kitten running around upstairs. Is it
"Why do you think it's mine?"
"Because it wasn't here before and it smells like you. Come
and have a drink with me, kid. I wanna talk to you."
"Whiskey and cherries? Whiskey and peaches?"
"Don't push it," said Logan.
John looked at him, hesitated, and then agreed.
They sat in the kitchen, Logan drinking warm Dr. Pepper, John
not touching his. Everyone in the mansion was sleeping or
preoccupied in their rooms. John stared at his metal lighter with
the shark mouth reminiscent of a World War II plane painted on it,
his fingers tracing over its smoothness. He wished he could scratch
away Faith's inscription, but part of him didn't want to.
"So, how's it going, John?"
"It's going fine," he said. Five by five, he thought;
something Faith often said. John decided to maintain his cool
suaveness and tried not to make eye contact.
"I know why you left, but you can always come back. Don't
you think you belong here?"
"You don't," John said.
"I got used to this place. Doesn't feel like the circus,
anymore, though with Nightcrawler and Scott . . . Nightcrawler's
John liked Wolverine, he admired him even though he didn't
really know him. He wanted to listen to what he had to say; he
wanted to believe it.
"The Professor is concerned."
John clicked his lighter open. "He'll get over it."
"What about your friends?"
"What about them?"
"You're pretending too hard, kid."
He closed the lighter and looked at Logan. "I'm not a
"No, you're old enough," said Logan, taking a sip of soda.
"Why do you need to know your past so badly? You can't
change it," John said.
"Why do you wanna screw up your future so badly?" said
Logan. "You wanna break all the rules. You don't wanna be
to do so you join Magneto and The Brotherhood where you're told
to do, where and when to do it. It makes sense to me."
"It's not the same," John said. "You break all the
You don't like to be told what to do."
"You're just following the leader and you're gonna get
"I'm not gonna die," said John.
"No, I'm not gonna die. You, Magneto's exploiting your
secret vulnerability. If he could read your mind, he'd do that,
too. You're a smart boy, John, and you're confusing right
because you're angry and alienated, we all are, and we want that
change, but right now here is the best place to seek refuge and
growth. Not with Magneto, not with Mystique, and definitely not with
Sabertooth. You're being led into the fire and it doesn't
you can control it."
John smiled slightly.
"You think this is funny?"
"No, I just didn't know you had all these beliefs."
"Either did I, until I came here. You have to find your own
"Maybe I did."
"In order to be appreciated people have to trust you first.
You didn't even give this place a chance," said Logan.
"I've been here long enough, before you came. This place is
boring and not immediate, weak even."
"You're wrong," Logan said. "You wanna be the
have to understand what you're rebelling against."
"You don't think I know?" John said, looking at him.
"I do," said Logan. "I just think you're judging it
wrong way. People are fighting different kinds of wars everyday.
Which one are you're really fighting?"
He took another sip of soda and watched John gaze at the
"Heard you got a girlfriend."
"Yeah, I guess," he said, his gaze returned to the
flame. "You met her."
"Right, I can tell you're really romantic."
John winced "fuck you" at him.
"She doesn't want flowers," he said.
"I was kidding."
"She's kind of weird. She has a really cool tattoo on her
right upper arm. I like to touch it."
Logan took a cigar from the pocket of his blue jeans and put
it in his mouth. He looked at John and the boy gave him a light.
"Rogue misses you," said Logan on an exhale.
"I doubt that," John said, unimpressed.
"There are other girls," said Logan.
John looked up at him and said, "I guess I'm like you. I
want the one I can't have."
There was fresh silence and he couldn't tell if John's
intention was honest or intentionally biting.
"I like you, kid. I hope I never have to fight you. Why
don't you stay here tonight? Some of your stuff is still here.
one's touched it. You can't just leave it behind."
When Logan left the kitchen John said, "Maybe I will."
John had his own room in the mansion, due to Wolverine's
but he was in the television room, his brown leather jacket rolled up
beneath his head for a pillow. Like most young men he liked to dully
entertain himself with explicit and cheap porn. It was mostly
boring, but he watched the screen, anyway, his eyes wanting to close
but his indifferent interest keeping them open and blank.
"Why do boys watch this stuff?"
Rogue's softly sweet voice stirred embarrassed panic inside
him, but he quickly decided it didn't matter. he sat up and
the television off.
"Don't turn it off," she said, leaning over the couch,
smiling, her long brown hair with the two white streaks, dangling
over one shoulder.
He did what she said and the rudely fornicating couple
resumed their carnal lust.
"Does it turn you on?" The way she asked it was simple and
"Really?" She glanced at the screen like she didn't
him. "I like to imagine much more grander scenarios. I
"With whom? Logan?"
She laughed. "I'm not into Logan. Not really. It's
eternal crush. I have a boyfriend."
"Thanks for reminding me," said John.
He moved his legs off the red couch so she could sit down. Rogue
picked up the remote, the images flickering in her brown eyes like
flames and honey, and muted the sound. She looked down at her
ungloved hands, her skin white and fair.
"I wanna do stuff with Bobby, but I can't," she said.
"I mean, I
think I wanna do stuff."
John withheld his wounded sigh.
"Everyone gets to do stuff," she said. "I can't even
hold hands. Do
you hold hands?"
"Don't you want to?"
"I don't know."
Rogue looked at him as if she was trying to figure something out.
"Are you gonna stay here?" she said.
"No, I think I'm gonna go to bed."
"You know what I mean, John."
He looked at her, she was so beautiful and too strong to be locked up
in some far away tower. "Do you really want me to?"
"I don't want you to get hurt, John. It matters."
She stared at him; he was handsome with his untouched face, pretty
lips, and slicked back dark hair. She wasn't certain whether
Wolverine woke up with his wolverine hair (that he managed to make
sexually stimulating), but she was certain John spent at least some
time fixing his hair in the morning because its style was flawless;
he had beautiful hair, dark like his eyes. She probably could pull
her hair into a ponytail faster.
"Maybe you didn't try hard enough to get me."
"Maybe I didn't because I knew I wouldn't," he said.
"Every time I'd
sit or hang out with you and Bobby, it was always because you were
there. I'm tired of feeling left out, by you, by everyone."
"The first boy I ever kissed went in a coma," said Rogue,
always be left out in ways you won't. I just wish I could really
She didn't know if she should, but she knew she wanted to; she
in close to John and he pulled away before she could kiss him.
"You're scared of me," she said, slightly hurt. "I
saw the kitten in
your memories. It made me cry."
She was so close to him; she had never been that close to him. Not
in real life, anyway.
"I'm sorry," he said.
John didn't pull away the second time; he let her kiss him and
stopped herself before she absorbed too much of him.
"That really wasn't long enough," John said.
"I know," said Rogue.
She took his lighter from his front pants pocket and he watched her
move the tiny flame on to her index finger. her eyes sparkled at it,
but she wasn't concentrating on it.
"Ow," she said, the flame burning her finger. She dropped
lighter into his crotch and he blew the flame out.
She smiled; she was gentle like the tallest and brightest sunflower.
"Do you ever burn yourself?" she said, holding her finger.
"I try not to," said John.
"Do you wanna come with me to The Hollow? It's some club in
city. I wanna drink champagne. Bobby doesn't want to go."
"Why not?" Then he thought, Because Bobby is lame, but he
it out loud.
"Goodnight John," she said, getting up to return to her room.
lips are soft. Like your eyes."
John told Faith he didn't dream, but he did. He dreamed of
fire and even in his dreams he could control it. Faith said The
Slayer's gift was death and she accepted it for herself.
was fire; fire and death shared the same bloodline. The more intense
his fire games became the more power he felt and the rush was
indescribable. He wondered if he was the only or if there was
someone else out there, like him, like Lady Deathstrike to Wolverine.
Faith referred to her grand and epic fight as "the good
fight." It was what Magneto called Xavier's fight. It was
ultimate war and John was going to make certain he didn't sit
he was going to be a powerful part in it because Magneto was right,
he was "a god among insects," and no one was going to tell
different, not Faith, not Rogue, not Logan.
When cerebro had been reversed, the sharp pain, the cruel
trick, he'd felt like he was being split into asymmetrical
His mutant power was his identity and no one was allowed to take it
from him. He would burn them until they no longer pleaded for
mercy. Giant eagles, tornadoes, tidal waves, he would manipulate the
fire, his fire, into these shapes and more; they would be his army
and they would loyally obey his command.
John knew he couldn't remain with the X-Men for much longer;
they would only delay him and his power.
He turned in his bed, snuggled under the thick blankets and
when he opened his eyes Rogue was standing over his bed. He gasped
and jerked slightly.
She smiled, "You were drooling."
John touched his mouth and said, "Why are you in my room?"
"Why not?" she shrugged, her voice sweet and soft like
She picked up his World War II shark-mouthed lighter from off
the night table and silently read the inscription, "to John, love
"Are you in love?"
"No," he said and snatched the lighter from her.
John realized he had an erection; he hoped the heavy blankets
were enough to conceal it. He glanced downward and everything seemed
safe. It's not like girls possessed the sixth sense when it came
that sort of thing. Or did they?
"I don't feel like sleeping," said Rogue.
"So you wake me up? Why aren't you in Bobby's room?"
"I didn't wake you up," she said, her lips rosy and lady-
like. "Your tricks are dangerous, John."
"Then don't get in the way," he said.
She reached out her hand to touch his dark hair and for the
first time noticed that his eyes looked like two dark silver full
"Do you like to show off for other people or for yourself?"
John looked up at her and said, "Sometimes I do it for you.
Tricks and charms are the same."
When she sat on his bed John was surprised.
"Can I touch you?" she said, her brown hair loose, the
opposite sided white streaks pushed behind her ears
"Please don't," he said, remaining still, his hand
around the lighter.
"Are you afraid I'll hurt you?" Rogue said.
"I'm afraid you'll kill me," said John.
"We see less and less of you. Are you mad at me? For what
happened at Bobby's house?"
"No," he said. "I'm not." John closed his
eyes, his pretty
lashes heightening the softness of his cheeks. "Fine, just do
Her fingertips touched his lips gently; she didn't linger too
long. With his eyes still closed he licked his lips.
"Are you bored with Bobby or something?"
"No," she said, her hand sliding under the covers and
touching his knee.
She could feel him rushing slowly into her skin, skin on
skin, and when he opened his eyes she pulled her hand away.
"I think you hide your heart," she said, not looking at him.
Then she did look into his eyes and she couldn't see into their
beautiful darkness. "You shouldn't."
The solid glaze of his rebel brown eyes seemed momentarily
shattered. He wanted to kiss her, but he knew if he did he
stop himself and he didn't feel like sleeping for the rest of his
young and promising life. He closed himself up without warning,
uninviting her with decisively sharp indifference despite the
connected intentions that burned within him.
"You should go," said John. "I'm not your