All Will Be Revealed In It's Own Time by ct_xfan
Summary: Logan finds something that may or may not have something to do with his past. Rogue decides to do some digging on her own.
Categories: AU Characters: None
Genres: Shipper
Tags: None
Warnings: None
Challenges:
Series: None
Chapters: 18 Completed: Yes Word count: 33185 Read: 79036 Published: 02/07/2007 Updated: 06/26/2007

1. Chapter 1 by ct_xfan

2. Chapter 2 by ct_xfan

3. Chapter 3 by ct_xfan

4. Chapter 4 by ct_xfan

5. Chapter 5 by ct_xfan

6. Chapter 6 by ct_xfan

7. Chapter 7 by ct_xfan

8. Chapter 8 by ct_xfan

9. Chapter 9 by ct_xfan

10. Chapter 10 by ct_xfan

11. Chapter 11 by ct_xfan

12. Chapter 12 by ct_xfan

13. Chapter 13 by ct_xfan

14. Chapter 14 by ct_xfan

15. Chapter 15 by ct_xfan

16. Chapter 16 by ct_xfan

17. Chapter 17 by ct_xfan

18. Chapter 18 by ct_xfan

Chapter 1 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
You Know You've Been Reading Too Much Wolverine/Rogue FanFic When....your stories start coming to you in your dreams!! I kid you not, I dreamt this thing last night!
Okay, L/M are a couple, how much of one remains to be seen, Rogue has Ms. Marvels/Carol Danvers' powers which allow her control over her mutation. X1 and X2 have come and gone.

I switch between first person narrative for the present and third person for the past.

~these are thoughts~
I totally suck at writing a southern accent so accept my apologies now.
I sat staring blankly out the large windows of the library of the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters. The information lain out in front of me swirled through my head like a maelstrom. So far off in my thoughts I never heard Scott approach.

“Rogue? Are you all right?”

I jumped at the sound of his voice, “Yeah Scott,…..I-I’m fine.”

“You don’t look fine,” he countered, “as a matter of fact you look like you were off in la-la land.”

I quirked my head, “Well, I guess I was a little distracted.”

Scott snorted back a laugh, “ ‘Distracted’ would be an understatement! You’ve been going around in your own little world since we got back from the Kominski Library last week. Care to share what’s got you off on an almost permanent mental vacation?”

I thought for a moment about all the things that were storming around in my head. Not sure if I dared to share my thoughts, but the need to share my secret was too much. I simply had to talk to someone before I exploded.

“I found it.”

Scott looked at me puzzled, “Found what?”

“Logan’s past.”

**********************************

Two months ago

Yet another attack by the Brotherhood had been thwarted. A summit, once again heavily attended by global leaders, at the world renowned Kominski Library, had been only the latest target for Magneto’s latest plan in attempting to force the world’s powers into subjugation.

The director of the library, Mr. Hardwin Chazzinoff, had been beside himself with gratitude for the X-men’s intervention. The noticeably obvious way in which they had moved the fight with Magneto and his followers out of the library’s main building had sent Mr. Chazzinoff’s benevolent disposition into the stratosphere. He simply insisted that Professor Xavier bring all the students to the library for a once in a lifetime tour of it’s history filled halls. Over the course the ensuing month, grouped by grade level, every last student at Xavier’s school got the royal treatment from all that the Kominski Library could offer.

The senior class, being the one most able to appreciate the tomes and papers housed at the library, were treated to an extended stay. Nearby dormitories were assigned to the class and the seniors had an unprecedented two weeks in which to use the Kominski’s vast warehouse of knowledge to start, add to, and/or finish the final assigned to them by Xavier himself.

Rogue, Jubes, and Kitty were a perfect example of the different stages the students were at with their papers. Kitty, ever the honor student, only had to add to her already finished paper if she wished. Rogue was in the throes of rapture being able to add such rich detail and information to her paper with the resources the Kominski offered. Jubilation Lee, surprising no one, had yet to even start her paper.

The three friends were making their way up the stairs to yet another area of the library. Another group of students, on their way down, accosted them in their ascent. Rogue’s hearing, still quite sharp from the last time Logan touched her, caught a familiar sound.

“…..so dear old Brantley, dear and true…..we proudly sing our praises to YOOOOUUUUU!!!”

The raucous group of kids was thrashing what Rogue assumed was their school song. But there was something familiar about the school name.

She stopped on the landing between stair levels, “Excuse me?” she caught the attention of a trio of children that could have been Jubes, Kitty and herself in another life.

All three no older than eighth grade she expected, the smaller version of Kitty responded, “Y-yes?”

Rogue could tell the kids were not used to being approached by strangers, they stuck beside each other in an unconscious show of solidarity. Rogue spoke softly and clearly, “I’m sorry if I startled you, sugar, I just couldn’t help hearin’ y’all singin’ out. Was that your school song?”

The younger Jubes version spoke up, “Yes ma’am! Good ol’ Lake Brantley High, our alma-mater.”

Rogue’s interest was now peaked, hearing the full name of the school. “Are y’all from up north?”

Jubes the younger once again responded, “No ma’am! We’re from A-la-baym-a.”

Rogue recognized the accent as soon as the state’s name was mentioned and silently cursed herself for not immediately recognizing the sound from the state neighboring her own home state.

This was when her own clone spoke for the first time, “What made y’all think we were from up no-arth?”

“I have a friend who went to a Lake Brantley High and he’s from Canada, I don’t guess your school an’ his are the same ones now, huh?” Rogue said.

Once again, the younger version of Kitty spoke, “I don’t s’pose it could be, ma’am. But our school has been around for better’n a hun’erd years. Are ya sure he went to school in Canada?”

Rogue thought for a moment, “Actually sugar, no, I’m not sure his Lake Brantley is in Canada, I s’pose I’m jus’ guessin’ cause that’s where he’s from. Thank y’all for talking to me, ya better go on and catch up with your class, I don’t want to getcha into trouble.”

Throughout this whole exchange the elder Jubes and Kitty stood off to the side of the landing and stared at their friend in confusion. Once their younger versions were gone, Jubes was the first to start the interrogation.

“Dude! What the heck was that all about??”

“Yeah!” Kitty echoed, “What’s so interesting about a bunch of kids warbling out their school song?”

The three compatriots had resumed their trek up the stairs. Rogue was deep in thought and almost didn’t hear her friend’s queries.

“Wh-wha? Oh! Oh yeah, the song. I just thought the name of the school sounded familiar, that’s all”

Jubes and Kitty exchanged the classic, ‘duh!’ look. “Well yeah! We sorta figured that out from the convo!” Jubes said in exasperation.

“Yeah!” Kitty echoed, only to receive an elbow in the ribs from Jubes. The furrowed brow she shot her friend was met with a whispered, ‘you sound like a broken record!’ Kitty stuck her tongue out at Jubes.

Rogue was still in deep thought as the three came to an empty table in the middle of the large, bookstacks filled room.
Undaunted by Jubes, Kitty continued, “So, ya gonna explain the interrogation of the little ones, Rogue?”

Rogue shook herself out of the self-imposed fog, “What’s there to explain? The school sounded familiar, I asked, it wasn’t the one I thought it was, end of story! Now can we please get to these damn finals papers? I’d rather not even begin to consider summer school for my senior year!”

Her friends took a mental step back as Rogue practically imploded. Kitty and Jubes went off together, as Jubes needed Kitty’s help more than anyone else in the senior class, while Rogue plopped down in a chair and huffed out a sigh of frustration. Absently mindedly she began to finger the fine-balled chain that circled her neck. Looking around to see if anyone was near, she lifted the chain until the ornaments it held dangled in front of her eyes.

No one had seen the latest edition to the twin tags that always hung around her neck. Two rings had joined the slightly heavy tags just a while ago. Rogue was still unsure of what the significance of these objects were but knew it had to be big. Just as big as the tags they jangled against. Rogue recalled how the rings came to accompany the tags……

------------------------

Cyclops slammed the door of the reinforced police wagon shut on the sturdily restrained Sabretooth and breathed out a sigh of exhaustion. His fellow X-men were gathered on the steps of the Kominski Library in various states of personal wreckage and destruction. It had been a long, hard battle, but in the end the good guys had won.

They’d more than won, the Professor had exclaimed. Not only had they once again thwarted another of Magneto’s attempts at world domination, but they had also saved a world-renowned landmark. The surrounding grounds of the Kominski would need repair, and several large statues had been all but destroyed, but it was of little consequence when compared to the irreplaceable papers and tomes that could have been lost.

Logan and Rogue, both needing some space from the crowd of people that had come to form around the conquering heroes, were walking together around the rear gardens of the library. Or, at least what used to be the rear gardens.

“You put a hell of a hurtin’ on Sabretooth today, sugar”

“Yeah, well you know damn skippy that nobody gets away with layin’ a hand on you! Cocky bastard!! Thought my attention was too caught up with that blue bitch! That SOB is gonna learn one o’ these days!”

Rogue chuckled quietly to herself, “D’ya really think so, Logan?” her tone turning serious, she added, “He seems to get some kind o’ sick pleasure outta tormentin’ you.”

Logan thought about that for a moment, “I suppose he does, but he’s the one that really pays for it in the end.”

They continued to walk in companionable silence for a while longer until they came to what was once the fountain. They each took a seat on the now water-less decoration, facing each other with legs astride the concrete edging.

“I’m sorry you had such a lousy homecoming this trip, sugar. You barely had time to dump your bag in your room before we had to scramble up here and tangle with Magneto.”

“Aw, it ain’t nothin’, darlin’. A bad day of breakin’ heads is still better then a good day chasing dead ends.”

“How did your trip go this time? Sounds like another big goose egg.”

Logan was staring down at his hands, still colored with Sabretooth’s blood. He glanced around and found a puddle left in the fountain just big enough to run his hands through. As he came back and sat before Rogue, she reached out and took his hands in her own.

Running her fingers over the grooves between his knuckles, then bringing his hands to her face to run them over her own cheeks, she said, “I’m sorry it took me so long to get to Magneto, sugar,” one lone tear ran down her face. “I can’t stand the thought of you bein’ hurt because o’me.”

Logan brushed the tear away with an index finger and took her by the chin, ensuring she was looking at him when he spoke, “Darlin’ that don’t have anything to do with you!”

Rogue opened her mouth to protest, Logan shushed her with a finger to her lips, “What ol’ Buckethead does, he does because he can. If he had psychic abilities, he’d aim for Jeannie or the Professor, if he could manipulate ice or fire he’d go for Bobby or John. He happens to be able to control metal, and because of that, I just happen to be the one at the top of his dance card.”

Rogue was still holding his hands in her own. She still wondered at the skin to skin feel of him. There was no way to repay Carol Danvers for the gift of controlling her mutation, but Rogue tried her god’s honest best to continue the good fight that Carol had fought right up until the end. Carol’s other powers made that fight a little easier and Rogue smiled at the thought of the look on Magneto’s face just before she knocked him in the head with a tree trunk. His helmet had gone flying, giving the Professor the opening he needed to exercise his psychic abilities over the anti-human mutant. Once their leader was subdued, the others lost most of their itch for a fight.

“Didja see the look on Magneto’s face just before I walloped him?”

Logan actually let a sly smirk escape his lips, “Yeah! He’ll learn one day too, not to mess with my girl!”

Rogue smiled at that exclamation. Unconsciously running a hand over the chain around her neck, happy to once again wear Logan’s mark no matter what the circumstance.

“Don’t tell him I said so, but it was pretty smart of ol’ One-Eye there, thinkin’ up that aluminum chain. Made real quick work of Magneto thinking he could use my tags against you!” Logan said, reaching out to run his fingers over the chain on the opposite side from Rogue. He pulled slightly on the length of non-magnetic metal and pulled the tags from where they nestled in the valley of Rogue’s breasts.

He fingered the small squares, ~They’re so warm.~ “I-I ah, ahem,” Logan cleared his throat loudly, catching Rogue’s attention, “I got somethin’ I want ya ta keep a hold of, like ya keep the tags...”

Logan reached into his uniform and pulled something out, looked at it for a moment and then handed it to Rogue. She peered at her open hand and realized he had laid two somethings in her palm. Picking one up, Rogue saw that it was a circle of some sort of stone; heavy, black, and cold to the touch. She took the other item and examined it. It was a ring. Squinting her eyes, she realized it was a class ring!

Rogue removed the chain and tags from her neck and with hands she hoped he wouldn’t notice were shaking, added the rings to the slim chain. “L-Logan, where did y-…..?”

He cut her off in mid sentence, “Don’t get all sappy on me, Marie, I don’t even know if those things have anything to do with me….”

“Then what-…, why…?”

“I got to the place the Prof had told me about. It wasn’t much different than Alkali Lake. Years and years of dust, what little was left was all busted up. I spent a week goin’ through the place. Even though it didn’t look promising, I didn’t want to look back and think, ‘what if I woulda checked…..’ So I tore the place apart, literally!”
Logan reached out to finger the stone-like ring as he continued, “I think it was the last room I searched. What’s that they say? About finding something in the last place you look? Well this was the last place to look in the whole damn place!” He took a deep breath, letting his head loll back and audibly sighed.
“It was some sort o’file room. Rows and rows of file cabinets, some knocked over, some still standing. Everything covered with what seemed like fifty years of dirt and crud. I knew there was nowhere else to look after this room and I sort of lost it. Got a little pissed, sliced and diced a few cabinets, threw a couple around. Made me feel a little better, but not much.”
He let the stone ring drop and took the other one; “I was turnin’ to leave, still pissed, and kicked a couple of cabinets just for the hell of it. Inside one of ‘em, somethin’ rattled. Not the sound of drawers jigglin’ around but an honest to god rattle, like something was loose. I picked the cabinet up and shook it, sure as shit, something was tumblin’ around inside the damn thing! I stood the thing up straight and started openin’ drawers, I found these inside.”


Rogue sat quietly and didn’t speak. Logan could tell by the look on her face that she didn’t understand why these two objects seemed important enough to take with him.

Logan continued, to explain just that, “Didn’t notice until I slammed the last drawer shut, but...,” he paused, taking a deep breath and dropping the ring to finger the worn tags, “this number was painted on the front of every drawer of that cabinet.”

Logan was still running his fingers over the tags, staring blankly at them. Rogue’s sharp intake of breath brought him out of the haze. He looked up at her and was surprised by the look on her face. All color had drained away; she was white as a ghost. Even the small spattering of freckles across her nose were gone. Her mouth hung open in an unspoken gasp.

-------------------------

Sitting there in the library, with the few lines of that school song stuck in her head, Rogue couldn’t help but feel that something or someone was trying to make a point. She was not one to really believe in fate, but the facts of the matter really couldn’t be ignored. One, she was sitting in one of the, if not the most information rich site on the planet. Two, just a measly month or so ago, Logan returned with what has so far been the only piece of information with any possibility of relating to him. And, three, a group of kids, out of the blue, within her earshot, break out in song with their school song, which happens to match the barely legible inscription on the ring Logan found!!

It was obvious to Rogue, this was too much coincidence to ignore.
Chapter 2 by ct_xfan
********Chapter 2************************

Scott dropped boneless into the nearest chair, and I suppose I should have expected that.

“His past? Wh-what the heck do you mean, Rogue?”

I began to gather all the papers and notes that lay out on the table in front of me. “I mean that, while I may not be able to tell Logan how or who is responsible for the adamantium coating his bones, I’m pretty sure I can tell him who he was before that.”

Scott leaned forward, elbows on knees, head in hands. “That’s a pretty big bomb to drop, there Rogue. Are you sure you’re right?”

Hell! Did Scott think I didn’t already know that?? I hadn’t even told Logan yet. I’m not so stupid as to go dropping shit like this on a who-knows-how-old amnesiac with nine-inch claws in his hands without some sort of positive proof.

“Yes Scott, I’m sure.”

I wasn’t prepared to go sharing Logan’s origins with anyone, it wasn’t my place. And I think Scott could tell by my tone and body posture that he wasn’t gonna get anything else outta me. He also knew, just as well as I did, that Logan had only stayed about three weeks after the library fight. Two of those weeks were when I was at the library with the other seniors. He’s off on another trip with another of Professor Xavier’s leads, and it don’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that I haven’t had a chance to talk with him.

“I know you haven’t had a chance to talk with him,” Scott said, “he sure as heck wouldn’t be gone NOW if you had.” Yeah, I knew Scott was a smart cookie. “And it’s none of my business, but can you tell me if what you’ve found is good? I’d like at least a tiny heads up if I’m gonna have to totally rebuild the DR.”

That got a smile out of me, “I don’t think the DR is in any danger, Scott. Like I said, I don’t have all the answers, but I really think it’s a better place to start from than he’s got now.”

Scott rose from the chair, clasped me by the shoulder, pressed a kiss to my hair and said, “You’re something else, Rogue! Logan’s lucky to have you! Wish him luck for me with this new starting point you found for him, huh?”

My smile expanded, “Sure Scott, sure.”

-------------------------

I flopped down on my bed, the mound of info a loose mess, barely holding together as a pile, on the chair at my desk. I knew what all was there, but I also knew I’d have to put it all together to make some sense before I talked to Logan. Like I had said, I’m not so stupid as to go dropping shit like this without positive proof.

As I stand up and start to lay the stuff out once again across my bed, determined to make it make sense to somebody looking at it for the first time. I realize how surprised and shocked I still am at all of this. I’ve got copies of forms and papers and even a few pictures! But it’s still so weird to look at it all and know it’s about Logan.

I pick up a photo of a young man, its patina is classically brownish, more than showing it’s age. His hair is cut short, but unruly waves are still cascading over his forehead. The high, starched collar and over ‘poofed’ neckwear, ~is that thing really supposed to be a ‘tie’?~ Only add to the conclusion that it is an old photo.

That’s the only thing I’m worried about, Logan has always been sorta obsessively anal about the difference in our ages. The perceived difference. It’s easier to get him to calm down about it because he doesn’t know how old he really is. That’s going to change with what I’ve found and I don’t know if that will ease his mind about us, or make it worse.

*****************

“AH-ha………Ah-HA………AH-CHOO!!!” Rogue sneezed for the umpteenth time. All the dust in this place was driving her nuts. Who would have thought that a world-renowned place like the Kominski actually had such a dirty, dusty, cluttered room within its halls?

Once Rogue decided she had to listen to the fates, or her karma, or whatever it was that convinced her these rings could tell Logan something about his past, she had sought out Mr. Chazzinoff. He was to the Kominski what Professor Xavier was to the school. If he didn’t know it, nobody knew it!

So after she had, as vaguely as possible, explained that she wanted to look up something on aged high schools, Mr. Chazzinoff had directed her to this smelly, musty, basement room. Dust particles floated through shafts of sunlight that streamed in from the ground level windows up near the ceiling. The room may have been an awful mess, housekeeping wise, but the amount of books and information it held was almost unfathomable. Floor to ceiling book cases ran completely around the room and as each row of book cases came further and further toward the middle, they got shorter than the last by about two feet. Standing in the exact middle of the room, at a waist level book case, Rogue thought the other cases looked like a stairway to nowhere.

She still didn’t understand how Mr. Chazzinoff got her to this particular place; there could be a hundred ‘Lake Brantley High School’s across the country, but at the moment she didn’t care about any but this one. She’d been poking around for only about an hour when she came upon a shelf labeled “Alabama High Schools – 1900-1950”.

~Bingo!! Well, maybe not a full bingo, but at least four in a row, I won’t get bingo unless these things have what I’m looking for.~

Rogue sat herself down cross-legged on the floor in front of the Alabama shelves. Digging through her backpack she pulled out a notepad, pencil, flashlight and eye glass. Using the flashlight and eye glass she took a good long look at the class ring that dangled on the chain around her neck. It was worn, but legible. She could read ‘Lake Brantley’ as it arced around the top face of the ring, and ‘High School’ as it arced across the bottom of the face. The words were by no means clear, but they hadn’t completely worn off either. The design that lay between the word arcs was more of a puzzle. To Rogue, it almost looked like a family crest of some type. A coat of arms divided into four equal squares, the top left square looked to be just a smooth gold field. It didn’t look to have any picture or depiction at all. The top right square had a simple background of red with black lines running across horizontally. It may have at one time been sort of three-D, so you could feel the lines, but not so much now. The bottom left square looked like it was another coat of arms within the coat of arms; a gold shield on a background of the same red as the upper right. The bottom right square looked to have the number twelve in it. (A/N: this is exactly what I dreamt!!! I swear!)

Rogue tucked the chain back inside her shirt and set about reading the spines of the books shelved before her. They were apparently filed alphabetically by school name, then by year within the names. She quickly found the ‘L’s’ and came to the ‘Lake’s.

~OK! Lemme see here…Lake Amarouck, Lake Ardice, Lake Balifort, c’mon!! Lake Bellview; Lake Billings, fer cryin’ out loud!! I’m in Alabama, not “the land of ten thousand lakes” Minnesota!! A-HA!!~ Rogue clapped her hands excitedly, ~NOW! For the year…..1900, uh-huh; 1906, yeah, yeah; 1910, ok ……YES!!~ With a triumphant flourish, and a sizeable cloud of dust, Rogue withdrew the 1912 edition of the Lake Brantley yearbook.

She stood and shook out the cramps in her legs. All the while brushing dust off the cover of the book. It was old, without a doubt, but in impressively good condition. Glancing around Rogue noticed a book stand at the end of the isle. Gently laying the book open in the “V” support of the stand, she began to page through the school year 1911-1912.

The book was modest in both its design and information. It became abundantly clear to Rogue that in 1912, Lake Brantley was not just the high school, it was the school. Rogue turned page after page of pictures of students either at their desks hands folded respectively or lined up at the blackboard – tall in back, shorter in front. The photos did not list each student individually, but the teacher and grade were noted.

~Hmmmmm, Ms. Brown’s third grade class, Ms. Porter’s fourth grade class,~ page turn, ~Ms. Green’s fourth grade. Hmmm, these kids look pretty good. Knickers and jackets on the boys, ankle length skirts and petticoats on the girls; this must’ve been maybe a private school, or a very well funded public school.~

Rogue kept on perusing the book, class photos were interrupted once in a while by a picture of a social group of some sort. Not many, but the social pictures seemed to break the whole school up much like today’s schools: elementary, middle, and high school. But the more Rogue saw, the more she feared that the senior class photo was going to be like all the rest she’d seen so far; just a large group photo, with little or no detail noticeable for individual faces. Even using her eye glass, she was afraid she wouldn’t be able to tell one boy from another.

~I don’t care!~ Rogue groused to herself, ~If I don’t find him here, I’ll go through all fifty states, DC and all the provinces of Canada if I have to!~ Determination showed through every fiber of her body.

Finally, Rogue came to the section of the yearbook that contained the information on its senior class. She was pleased to read that the section was jubilantly announced with a full-page layout.

~Well, well,~ she smiled to herself,~ this looks to bode well for me! Why would they do up the senior section with this big, fancy design only to have you turn the page and find one big group photo?~ Rogue was surprised to notice her hand was trembling, to no one in particular she said aloud, “Well, here goes…”

She turned the page and was greeted by the seriously calm visages of only six students. Three on the left hand page and three on the right. The photos were about 2x3, and the detail was faultless.

“YES!! WOO-HOO!!” Rogue jumped up and punched the air in victory. The celebration was short lived as a realization hit her, ~Aw! But, if this isn’t the right school, I could be looking at this victory dance gettin’ pretty old after the next twenty or thirty books.~ She calmed quickly and picked up her eye glass to examine every male face she came to.

Chapter 3 by ct_xfan
---------Chapter 3-------------

Rogue turned yet another page of the seniors section of the 1912 Lake Brantley yearbook, and about choked on her own breath. Right there, staring out at her from the middle of the page, was Logan. There was absolutely no doubt about it, no eye glass needed. She didn’t think it possible for him to be any better looking than the man she knew and loved, but the photo in front of her proved her wrong! Oh, so very wrong!

His hair was shorter, but the curls were still unruly. He was completely clean-shaven, not a mutton or chop to be seen. He appeared to be looking slightly off camera but Rogue still felt her heart melt as she looked into his eyes. While still holding the intensity she was so used to seeing, they were somehow softer, his face was completely unlined, so smooth looking it hitched her breath once again.

She glanced at the small paragraph of information that accompanied the photo, ~Hmm, Edward Logan Dunn; Most Likely to join a branch of the military. HA! I guess some things never change, huh sugar? Member of the debate team, the football team, captain of the intramural wrestling team?!? OH! My! Gawd!~ Rogue actually stumbled back a step as the irony hit her full in the face.

~Aw, sugar! Those military bastards that messed you up may have taken your memory but they sure as heck didn’t take what made you, YOU!~

Grabbing a scrap piece of paper, Rogue put it in place as a bookmark, gathered her things together and made her way out of the dusty, depressing hole of a room.

------------------------

When she got back to the upper levels, and ‘the land of the living’, as she now referred to the more utilized and public areas of the library, she knew the first place she was going was to the computer room.

~OK, first order of business, get copies of this!~ Rogue took a seat at one of the empty computer stations that provided not only internet access and printing ability but was also connected to a rather high quality scanner. Carefully as she could, she place the open yearbook on the scanner glass and chose the settings on the screen for the process.

A few moments later, the page from the yearbook appeared on the computer screen. Using the mouse, Rogue cropped the edges of the preview down so that Logan’s image and the small paragraph were the only things that would be reproduced as a hard copy. Once she had said hard copy in her hands, she proceeded to pour over the yearbook once again, with the eye glass, looking for any other photos of Logan. As she guessed, she found him amongst his fellow athletes in the football and wrestling photos, and lined up behind one of two waist high podiums with the debate club. Once Rogue had done all she could with scanning, blowing up and printing these photos; group photo along with close ups of Logan himself, she returned the yearbook once again to it’s resting place in the dark, dusty hole of the lower levels.

Returning to her place at the computer station, Rogue accessed the internet and went directly to Google. Typing in Logan’s full name – Edward Logan Dunn – she marveled at the number of matching hits for the surname Dunn. Feeling particularly lucky, she clicked on the very first matching link. It took her to a genealogy website. Starting out slow, and thanking the computer gods for the kind soul that designed the site, Rogue began to answer the questions she could in order for the site to help her as much as it could. The more she had to click on the “Don’t know” option, she more dejected she became. She realized that the only things she knew for absolute certain were his name, year of high school graduation, and name of the school. Some things she could make an educated guess about; graduating at an estimated eighteen years of age put his birth year around 1894. She could search 1893 and 1895 with the ‘known’ info rather easily. The yearbook made note of the towns it served, so she only needed to search for information in those locations.

Two hours later, with a splitting headache, Rogue was down to one of the last options she had in the mix-mashed-mess of singular details she had on one Edward Logan Dunn. So far, nothing had panned out for a young man by that name, from that high school, graduating in that year; born in either 1893, 1894, or 1895; and residing in either of the handful of towns that the yearbook talked about.

~ AW! Man! Exponentials were never my strong suit. Wish I woulda paid more attention in Scott’s class! Then maybe I would’ve realized how many different ways you could combine these few bits of info!~

Just as Rogue was about to totally give up hope of finding anything else, the computer ‘beeped’ and the screen changed. Her heart sped up and a knot formed in her stomach. Staring back at her from the terminal screen were a dozen or more links! The historical records page gave her the option to choose from four different tabs, each holding within it information on Edward Logan Dunn, born October 8, 1895, in Brantchville, Alabama, attending Lake Brantley Community School and graduating in 1912.

**********************

I still couldn’t believe the information I found! I was getting so ticked off every time that damnable computer screen would pop up with that blasted “No information found matching the parameters you have indicated” window! I was ready to about spit! The stupid thing must’ve known it was on thin ice with me, because about the time I wanted to knock it off the desk and jump up and down on it, was when it came up with that wonderful page of links!

‘Edward Logan Dunn’, this name o’yours, sugar, is runnin’ around in my head like a tune from the radio; unavoidably and totally stuck! I wonder what your friends called you? ‘Eddie’? BLECH!! NO! You are most certainly not an ‘Eddie’! ‘Edward’? Eh, maybe, but only as a second choice. You were probably Logan then just like you’re Logan now. There’s too much else the same between the young man in this photo and the cage brawler I fell in love with for you to have been known by any other name.

I’ve got all this stuff spread out on my bed now, trying to figure out how best to organize it. I suppose to begin at the beginning would make the most sense. I hunt up the copy of the family tree I found online. It’s short, and doesn’t tell too much other than Logan’s parents were Edward Lawrence Dunn and Margaret Ann Logan. I really wish their birth dates, marriage date or something else was included, but again, I need to remind myself that even this little bit is more than Logan has ever had before. Besides, it does have his birthday listed!

It looks like he was an only child. Part of me is sad over this, but part is also a little selfishly happy. I’m not sure how I’d react to finding out that Logan actually had family. I know I shouldn’t feel like that, but I can’t help it. You get sort of attached when you’ve become as close as Logan and I have over the years, and I’m not sure if I’d be able to so easily share him.

Of course, just because these records don’t show any siblings, doesn’t mean there still couldn’t be any out there. Like I said, it’s short, this tree. More like a sapling if I wanted to take the plant metaphor to a sickeningly corny conclusion. It was Logan and his parents. Period. End of info. It didn’t go back any further and it didn’t go forward. I didn’t find anything about siblings, grandparents; ancestors of any sort really, nor did I find anything about descendents.

I may sound like I totally struck out, but once I had Edward Lawrence’s name I went ahead and did some other searches. I found the old family homestead! I found copies of the county records detailing the elder Dunn’s occupation as a blacksmith and veterinarian. No formal training there, but then, the Alabama of the early 1900’s didn’t seem like a very likely place to find a formally educated people doctor, let alone a formally educated vet! The land surveys and plots for the town haven’t changed much in all these years. Once I had this information I was actually able to go to one of the web’s mapping sites and get an aerial photo of the place!

I was still processing all the mind boggling stuff I was able to find, when a message box popped up on the screen. Somebody had noticed my linking up to the family tree page over on the genealogy website and wanted to know if they could help me! Now, I’m no fool, I wasn’t about to let my excitement get the better of me and end up getting taken by some online hustler. But Mandi turned out to be real cool. She’s a senior in high school, and she lives in what used to be Brantchville! She works in the county clerk’s office and they get a message from the genealogy site whenever someone accesses anything about their area.

I know, I know! It sounds like a perfect scam. Use the emotions of some poor sucker searching for their past to take ‘em for all their worth. ‘Oh sure, I can get you that. I just need a bit of front money to get the ball rolling.’ But Mandi never asked for anything. She was right up front about it all. She gave me the website address for the county so I could confirm what she was telling me, even went so far as to educate me on how to tell if an address is not taking you to where it says it is. I mean, hey, I may be no fool, but that doesn’t make me Bill Gates either. I know how to surf the web, but I’ll also be the first to admit that I can wipe out just as easily as the next guy. Of course, the next guy would have to be Logan! He really doesn’t like computers much, did you know that?

Anyway, so Mandi and I start trading instant messages and before I know it she’s offering to track down the old Dunn homestead and see what’s there, if anything! She explained that with our society being so transient now-a-days, most folks who want to go searching for their ‘roots’ have the problem of not living where they need to be searching. Hence, the position she and a handful of other seniors hold in the clerk’s office.

So now, here I sit, surrounded by Logan’s past. Computer printouts, scanned copies of photos, printed copies of photos; did I mention the fantastic job Mandi did? I’ve got photos of the whole damn property that used to belong to Edward Lawrence Dunn and his family!!

And now I have to figure out how to tell him what I’ve found. I seem to have gotten it pretty well organized. I know I said I wasn’t ready, nor was it my place to go spilling Logan’s personal info to anyone, but I really wish I had somebody I could ask to take a look at it and tell me if it makes any sense to them, reading it cold like this. Scott is the only one who knows so far. And while I trust him with my life, I can’t, one hundred percent, see him being able to keep totally quiet about it. ‘Sides, he’s married to a telepath, no way Jean wouldn’t find out. So scratch Summers. I sure as heck can’t ask Kitty or Jubes. They’ve both got mouths on them bigger than the Grand Canyon. They’d never be able to keep it to themselves and the whole school would know before Logan did! Not the best route to your man’s heart, that’s for sure! There’s really only one sure fire, obvious choice.

So off I go to see the Professor

Chapter 4 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
/this is telepathic communication/
------------Chapter 4 ---------------------

I shouldn’t have been surprised. It’s not like it doesn’t happen every time, because it does. I was standing in front of Professor Xavier’s office, my hand raised to knock, and before I can make contact…..

/Come in, Rouge./

Like I said, I shouldn’t have been surprised. It was only then that I realized, if the Professor knew I was coming to see him, did he know *why* I was coming to see him? And if he knew *why* I was coming to see him, would it be a fair evaluation of how I’ve put this stuff together? He could have been eavesdropping on my thoughts for the last week. He might just as well already know everything that I do, and what good would that do for my quest for an unbiased, uninformed opinion?

“I assure you, Rogue,” the Professor began in his usual calm, collected tone, “just because I know someone is about to knock on my door, does not mean I know every minute bit of information running through their head. Now, what I can I do for you today?”

I guess I must have been projecting pretty loudly…..

“Yes, you were,” his tone was business serious, but the smile on his face told me that he was just funning with me.

“Ok, let’s get this conversation up on the same plane, huh?” I ask, my own face trying unsuccessfully to conceal a smirk, “can we keep it within the usual auditory range of the average mutant, please?”

The Professor chuckled good naturedly, “Of course, my dear! I take it you have something you’d like me to, what? Proof read for you?”

I approach his desk, taking a seat in one of the lavish leather chairs set to face him, “Not so much a proof, Professor,” and I smirk again, “but I’d just like your opinion if it makes any sense to you, the way it’s put together.”

“I’d be happy to take a look at what ever you have, Rogue,” he reached toward me over the desk, and I hand him the folder, “What sort of ‘sense’ are you looking for it to make?” He begins scanning over the papers in the folder, not yet reading each little word.

“I just want to know if it’s self explanatory enough for someone who’s totally oblivious to the material.”

The Professor was quiet for a moment, his face not betraying the slightest bit of what was going on in his head. His review of the papers in the folder slowed and he appeared to be taking a bit more time in his review. The longer he remained quiet, the more nervous I became.

Finally, he closed the folder. Lacing his fingers together and resting his hands on top of the packet of information, he begins to speak, but hasn’t raised his eyes to look at me yet, “You referred to this paperwork as ‘material’, Rogue. Before glancing at it, I assumed you were at some sort of impasse over something having to do with your classes.” He now raises his eyes, his face a still life of serenity and composure. It doesn’t make me feel much better.

“How exactly did you come into possession of this information?”

I’m a little taken aback at the slight change of subject, but I guess it’s a fair question. All this information on Logan’s past, but no mention of how I got to it. “Logan found something on his last trip out, I just took up where it left off.” I wasn’t sure why I was being so vague, after all the details he just got through reviewing.

The Professor still has his hands resting on the folder, fingers laced, it didn’t escape my notice that he hasn’t handed the packet back to me. He began to tap his thumbs together, thinking.

“Did Logan ask you to do this for him?”

Again, I’m surprised at the subject change, but I also know that the Professor doesn’t ask idle questions. He’s going somewhere with all this, and there’s no changing the route he’s laid out for this little trip.

“No, not in so many words,” I begin, “He didn’t seem to think what he found really had any connection to him.” By now I was wringing my hands, worrying my fingers into knots, wanting desperately to know why I was getting the third degree over all this.

The Professor turned in his chair to face away from me, looking out the large expanse of windows behind his desk. I wasn’t sure if his turning away from me was a good sign or not. Sometimes it was another tactic to give him time to think, sometimes it was a sure sign he was unhappy with something that happened.

“I’m not unhappy, Rogue, and before you think it, yes, you’re projecting again,” his voice held a slight twinge of mirth, but not anywhere near the level from before. “I’ll come right out with what I’m thinking; yes, you’ve found the place where Logan’s life began.”

I’m dumbstruck. There’s no other way to describe it. I was hoping and praying that all this work wasn’t for nothing, and it seemed like it all was confirmed when I first laid eyes on the picture of Logan in the yearbook. But to have it said so plainly, no hesitation, no hint of doubt, just flat out ‘Yes’, it’s a different kind of shock. The tone in the Professor’s voice didn’t escape me, though.

“You don’t sound particularly surprised or pleased about what I’ve found,” I begin, replaying the last few minutes of conversation in my mind, “You sound very, very sure about what I’ve found…” My words trail off as a fog seems to lift in my head, suddenly a very crisp, clear picture comes into focus, and I find myself jumping out of the chair, my voice sounding unusually loud in the quiet office. “YOU KNOW!! You know about Logan’s past!! You’ve gotten past whatever’s blocking his memory and YOU KNOW!!”

The Professor turned in his chair to once again face me. He found me standing with my hands spread on his desk, leaning slightly over it. I probably looked like some classic film noir city prosecutor, addressing the criminal, in mid-accusation. I don’t know if it’s that thought projecting too loudly, or what, but Xavier smiles at me.

“You’re a very resourceful and intelligent woman, Rogue. Please, sit down, child,” he gestures at the chair with one hand. I don’t know how to interpret the two divergent descriptions he’s just used within three little seconds. I manage to keep from rolling my eyes at him, but I can’t help but think which the heck am I? A woman or a child?? The Professor’s smile brightens almost imperceptibly. Dammit! There I go again! I’ve gotta get my shields reinforced.

“Rogue, please, there is no need to strengthen your mental shields. There has never been any reason before this and this is certainly not a reason to do so now. Yes, you are correct. The blocks that are keeping Logan from knowing about his past only keep him from getting to the memories. They are strong blocks, please don’t misunderstand. I’m sure Jean would not be able to get past them without a very intense session, which would require Logan’s permission and cooperation. It is only his extreme, deep seated desire to find his past that allowed me access.” The confused look on my face was abundantly clear, I’m sure, as the Professor paused like he was giving me an opening to ask a question.

“If he wants to find it so badly, why is his mind keeping him from the memories?”

The Professor nodded, “Yes, you are a very intelligent woman, Rogue. But alas, I cannot answer that question. There is something keeping Logan from seeing all that is within his mind. Whether for his safety, his sanity, or what reason I cannot say. The intricate inner workings of the mind are still something that is not completely understood. Even by me.” Again, he paused, whether for me or himself I don’t know.

“To answer your initial question, about whether this information makes sense; I assure you it does. Even if I had not already seen into Logan’s mind, this is a very well thought out, well organized presentation of the information you have found. But I wish to caution you, there is something keeping Logan’s mind from seeing the memories he has. As I said, I don’t know what it is and I cannot tell you why. It may very well be in the grand plan of the universe that these blocks begin to fall due to your intervention using the ring Logan found. But it also may be that you are not part of the plan that ultimately reveals his past to him,” he raised his hand to stop me as I opened my mouth to speak, “I cannot tell you what to do here, Rogue. I may be the world’s most powerful psychic, but I cannot read the mind of the fates, of the universe, of whatever god or gods that may be the ultimate administrator of what goes on, on this planet. I can only tell you to think hard and follow your heart. It is my belief that no matter who or what may be,” it was so funny to see the Professor make air quotes, “ ‘in charge’ of destiny it or they cannot fault good intentions fueled by the heart.”

With that, he handed me back the folder, gave me a fatherly smile, and I left his office. I had a lot to think about, A LOT to think about.
Chapter 5 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
I take full responsiblity for the corny use of the following dream sequence. I completely admit to writer's block and throw myself on the mercy of my readers, I just need to get through the 'bummed' attitude that Rogue's talk with the Professor caused.
Please forgive me!!
-----------Chapter 5--------------


Well, damn!! My mood has been totally blown! Here I was so excited about all this stuff I found for Logan, and the Professor has to be a killjoy. I return to my room and flop out on my bed. I know that staring at the ceiling isn’t going to cause the mysteries of the universe to be revealed to me. But right now, I can’t think of any better plan.

I guess I could go with the old standby; make a list of pros and cons. The good reasons for telling Logan and the bad. I grab a pad and pencil from the chest at the foot of my bed. Long line down the center of the page, ‘PRO’ on one side and ‘CON’ on the other. Ok, now for the brain power…Logan would no doubt be surprised. Ok, maybe that’s neither here nor there. Pro or Con, he’d be surprised, that’s a given; so we won’t even put that down.

Um…Logan would know where he came from! That’s a Pro if ever I heard one. He’d have a starting point. He was born in Alabama and his parents were Lawrence and Margaret. Definitely three things he wouldn’t know otherwise. Ok, uh, finding out he was born in 1895 and is over a hundred years old? Yeah, I suppose that would be a Con. He’s always been touchy about the age thing.

I’m staring at the ceiling again. It feels like I started this list over an hour ago but it’s only been maybe fifteen minutes!! I’ve not gotten any farther than the one Pro point and the one Con. There’s got to be more points!! There’s just got to be. Let’s see, finding out he’s really a Johnny Reb and not an ‘ayuh’ Canuck? Probably not such a great point, but we’ll put it down in the Con column just because I’m so desperate to put something down!

------------------

AW!! Hell bells!! I’m not looking for the damn mysteries of the universe anyway! I just came back from dinner and my brain child of an idea isn’t any better looking than before I went downstairs. I just want some help with what the heck to do here! Up until my little talk with the Professor, I was so damn sure. I was positive about everything I did and was going to do. I never once thought there would be any reason not to tell Logan what I found.

NOW, however, I’ve doubt to spare. Professor Xavier’s talk about Logan’s memory blocks has really freaked me out. The Professor is the world’s most powerful psychic, and the fact that even he doesn’t know or understand the blocks is something to take darn seriously. The idea that they’re there to protect Logan from himself is very, very strange. I can’t fathom anything that would ‘scare’ Logan, or the Wolverine for that matter, to that extreme. The stuff that he already knows is horrendous enough, that there might be something worse is completely unbelievable.

It’s a horrible comparison to make I know, but I suppose it’s kind of like a rape victim, distancing themselves from the attack to the extent that they don’t even recall it. Logan knows what happened to him in that lab, at least to the extent of what the nightmares show him. He’s almost consumed in the desire to find his past.

But, you know, now that I really think about it, I wonder what exactly he’s looking for? What is the motivation for this all consuming hunt? Is he looking for the kind of stuff I’ve already found? Is he wanting to know if there’s family out there he’s forgotten about? Is he just wanting to find the men who are responsible for what happened to him at the lab? Maybe I could chat him up and try to find out just what it is he’s looking for, and then I may get a better feel about what to do with the stuff I’ve found.

Finally feeling like I’ve got at least a hint of a plan, I putter around my room for just a little while until I decide to go to bed. All this mental exertion is almost as physically tiring as a go ‘round in the DR! I’ll have to ask the Professor tomorrow if he knows when Logan’ll be back. Like I said, now that I’ve got at least a half-assed plan, I want to get to work on it.

**********************


“Marie! Marie! Wake up!”

Rogue wondered sleepily who the heck was talking to her and yelling for her to wake up. She squinted one eye partially open and was blinded by a ray of sunlight. Raising a hand to block it, she tries to see beyond the yellow burst of blinding sunshine. Rising to a sitting position, she realizes she’s laying in the grass. Letting both of her eyes adjust, she begins to make out a form leaning toward her. Getting her feet under her, she tries to stand up but, finds herself falling. Something has tugged at her waist and she’s landed in the arms of someone.

Strong, firm arms, she notes absent-mindedly. Looking up, she find herself captivated by soft hazel eyes. She is in the arms of a very good looking young man. He is somehow familiar, but she can’t figure out how or why.

“Marie! Are you alright?” He’s helping her get her footing again, and she notices what made her falter, she’s gotten her feet caught up in her many layers of skirts.

~SKIRTS?!?~ she thinks, and once again this feeling of strange unease, of something being not quite right. She’s watching the ground, and the way the skirts just barely sweep it. There’s a funny feeling of disconnectedness, not being able to see her feet as she walks, but it’s just out of reach, so she lets it go.

“Marie? Say something!” She realizes the nice looking young man wants an answer.

“Yes, yes, I’m fine, thank you.”

She hears a bell ringing from someplace, and the young man is talking again.

“I’m so sorry if my chatting bored you, Marie. I was quite shocked to see that you’d fallen asleep,” he has such a sheepish look on his face, Rogue blushed lightly in embarrassment. ~Oh no! I fell asleep on him?~

“I should be apologizing to you, that was such bad manners of me.”

“No need for apologies, Marie, I understand that you more than likely would not be overly interested in the twin colts my father and I delivered over the weekend.”

“Oh, but I am! I’ve always loved horses. I just mustn’t have slept well last night, please, if it’s not too much trouble, would you tell me about it, again?”

The young man is even more handsome when he smiles and Rogue feels herself warm from being on the receiving end of such a look. He glances up at the building they’re approaching and she notices that not only is a large bell being rung from the steepled point, but another bell is ringing in the hand of an older woman who is standing at the top of the stairway leading into the building.

“If you would allow me to escort you home following the afternoon classes, I would be delighted to entertain you with the story.”

Still enthralled by the handsome face and soft hazel eyes, Rogue answers that she would be pleased for him to accompany her home, not quite giving a conscious thought to where home is, or what the name of her attractive escort might be.

Chapter 6 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
YEESH!! I forgot how difficult historical pieces can be! I’m gonna get back to the present, I swear!! Just have to set a stage or two for the finale.

Please also know, I have the utmost respect and admiration for teachers. They don't nearly get the recognition they deserve and they deserve a lot!!. Please do not take anything negative said here seriously. It is spoken only to address the ridiculous rules and regulations heaped on single, female teachers of the early 20th century.

------------Chapter 6-----------

The afternoon’s classes went well. For some reason Rogue was struck at how easily everything seemed to just tumble out of her head. What she enjoyed most however, was assisting the younger children. The atmosphere of helping each other, that each child was given the space to learn at his or her own pace and to concentrate on ideas and philosophies that interested them was yet another in a long list of déjà vu moments that were piling up in the space in her brain that wasn’t unconscious thought, but wasn’t really conscious either.

At any rate, however, the rather ‘free thinking’ atmosphere of the school was attractive to Rogue, and she made a point to speak with the teacher during one of the lulls in class time. Ms. Winters agreed that Rogue, or Marie as her fellow students and teacher called her, had a most definite knack for education. She’d noticed it before and was meaning to approach Rogue herself. Having finally gotten connected, Ms. Winters was virtually gushing with eagerness and pride to tell Rogue all about the very impressive ‘new wave’ teaching style of The Organic Education school.

The more Ms. Winters spoke about the ‘scandalous’ new style of teaching put forth by Marietta Johnson, the more Rogue could feel a connection with the founder’s want and vision for her schools. The rejection of rote memorization of meaningless facts and prescribed curricula. The desire to learn about each child and discover the individual learning style that would help them best. The encouragement given to experience the world through new adventures and events, by trying new things and asking even the most outrageous questions. The adaptability of the classroom environment to promote the in-borne curiosity and desire to learn in all children of all ages.

So deep in discussion were they that neither had noticed that it was well past the time for the day’s final bell to be rung. Again, surprised, but not, Rogue found her fellow students still hard at work, no one staring longingly at the Grandfather clock in the corner, mentally begging someone to notice the time and release them from the indentured servitude of school.

Veritably bouncing down the steps, her head filled with all sorts of possibilities and half formed plans for her own Organic Education classroom, Rogue found her escort home waiting for her at the fence post of the school’s property.

“You looked to have been quite involved with your discussion with Ms. Winters,” he began.

Smiling brilliantly, causing her companion to feel a similar warmth that she herself had earlier, Rogue was exploding with want to discuss all that she’d discovered and absorbed in the last hour. “Oh, Edward!” she began, “I really think I’ve found my calling! Ms. Winters said she’d noticed my way with the students, and was looking to speak to me just as much as I wanted to speak with her.”

The pre-planned discussion of the newly borne colts now long forgotten, the two young people fell into step and continued their discussion of plans for after graduation. Although his words were supportive and positive, Rogue had the distinct impression that her friend wasn’t completely thrilled with her newfound life strategy.

“Edward, what is it, really? You say your happy for me and you’ve given me more good ideas on how to go about obtaining my own classroom, but I can tell your heart isn’t in what you’re saying.”

Not able to meet her eyes, the young man spoke, “Marie, I’ve asked you many times, I’m only ‘Edward’ to Ms. Winters; she’s such a stickler for propriety, please, PLEASE, call me Logan! And yes, as usual, you’ve seen through my façade. But you should know after all these years that your happiness is all I care for. I’d never refuse you anything. If it is your desire to become a teacher for the Organic Education Movement then I will give you all my support. But since you’ve ferreted out my ruse, I must confess it saddens me that such a beautiful young woman like yourself would restrict herself to such a lonely life as that of a school teacher.”

Rogue knitted her brow in confusion, “Logan, whatever are you talking about? ‘Restrict myself to such a lonely life’, what do you mean by that?”

Logan stopped now, and did look at Rogue, something in his eyes put another jot on the déjà vu list in her head. There was the usual intensity that something told her was not unusual; but there was something else. Something that made her heart flutter for no reason she could discern. She was startled when he dropped their straps of books and took her hands in his.

“Marie, can you honestly tell me that you haven’t taken into consideration the ‘Rules for Teachers’ plaque that hangs directly above Ms. Winters’ desk? Ms. Johnson’s school may be progressive, but it still must obey the board under which it operates. I simply cannot see a bright spark like you being able to cow-tow to such restrictions.”

Still confused, Rogue hoped that the look on her face would coherently convey her wish for him to continue. She breathed a mental sigh of relief when he did.

“’A proper teacher will not keep company with men, A proper teacher may not loiter in the downtown ice cream parlors, A proper teacher must arrive by 7 AM so the fire is properly prepared for lessons to begin at 8, A proper teacher may not travel beyond the town or city limits without first obtaining the permission of the Chairman of the School Board.’ The same reasons that the School of Organic Education is so attractive to you are the same reasons I cannot see you tolerating such restraining directives.”

He took a breath, glanced at their clasped hands for a moment and met her eyes once again.

“Marie, we’ve known each other all our lives. Our grandparents lived next door to each other just as our parents do now. No one would ever force us to do anything we didn’t want to do, we wouldn’t attend the school we do if our parents subscribed to such barbaric notions. But I think everyone, including myself, has been hoping that something beyond friendship might develop between us. If you were to seek this teaching position, we would not be able to explore ‘what could be’, and you would most likely find your appointment as a teacher far away from here, and that would make me very sad indeed.”

Rogue was dumbstruck. She’d never thought that her friendship with Logan could ever be anything more than what it was. Now he was confessing to wanting it to be much more than it was. The niggling feeling at the back of her mind was noticeably buzzing at her. She didn’t know it, but it was that unconscious-conscious place where all the moments of déjà vu had been piling up. Something about the thought of her friendship with Logan changing had started a cascade effect and she once again felt herself falling.

The School of Organic Education is a real entity, founded by Marietta Johnson, in Fairhope, Alabama in 1907. For more information go to their website http://www.fairhopeorganicschool.com/
The Rules for Teachers is also no joke…..check out the ridiculousness…… http://www.wier.ca/~%20daniel_schugurensky/assignment1/1915rules.html.

Chapter 7 by ct_xfan
-------------Chapter 7-------------


When she came to, Rogue found herself back in the school. She was laying on Ms. Winters’ desk, her head raised on a thick book, her feet elevated on the back of a chair, and a cool cloth on her forehead. Noticing her eyes were open, the teacher spoke.

“Oh, Mr. Dunn, Edward! Come quickly! She’s awake!”

Rogue couldn’t really tell what Ms. Winters had said, her ears felt like they were full of cotton. But it didn’t take much to realize she must have called to Logan. Quick as lightening, he was at her side, grasping her hand, much as he had been before she felt herself fall. He was speaking to her, but she could still not clearly make out what he was saying. She glanced at Ms. Winters and noticed that her mouth was moving also.

Unable to hear what they were saying properly, Rogue spoke up, knowing it was impolite to interrupt someone when they were speaking, she figured though, if you couldn’t hear them, it would be more impolite to let them prattle on.

“Ms. LeRouge! You gave us quite a scare there! How are you feel----?”

“I’m sorry, Ms. Winters, I can’t seem to hear you very well, my ears feel like they’re stuffed with cotton,” with the conclusion of her statement, Rogue felt the grip on her hand tighten. She wriggled herself to a sitting position, feeling her ears begin to clear, as if she’d been swimming, a strange draining sensation. She was slightly shocked to find Logan’s head on her shoulder, his voice cracking with emotion.

“Oh! Marie, I’m sorry! I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to ---!” He was immediately cut off by Ms. Winters, “Now Mr. Dunn,” her voice taking on a strong, authoritative tone, “Please! A little decorum! Really! There is no reason for such a display!”

Her words cut straight into Logan, and almost immediately he was once again standing upright, hands clasped together behind his back, head down as if he were a scolded five year old, “Y-yes, Ms. Winters, O-of course. I apologize for that extremely un-manly display, I-I don’t know what came over me,” he quickly turned and walked out of the building.

Puzzled and shocked, Rogue rose to her feet, but teetered a bit. Ms. Winters caught her arm and tried to convince her to lay back down, if even for a moment longer. Rogue would not hear of it. She had to get to Logan.

“Thank you, Ms. Winters, I’m fine really, just a bit of low blood sugar or something, I probably just stood too quickly,” she was trying anything and everything to explain the way she swayed toward the door of the school building.

Realizing she would not be able to convince her to rest a bit more, Ms. Winters simply called after her, “Well, take care getting home, Ms. LeRouge, sit and rest every few minutes, you don’t want to overtax yourself!”

Rogue waved a hand absent-mindedly over her head to acknowledge the advice.

Logan had slowed his determined pace. Having heard Ms. Winters call after Rogue, he knew she was following after him. Not wanting to be the cause of another ‘episode’, he waited for her to catch up. When she did, she was slightly out of breath.

‘pant – pant’ “Wh-what was all that about?” ‘pant’

“What was ‘what’ about?” he questioned.

Rogue took a moment to properly catch her breath.

“What was with the stalking out on me? It’s not that I don’t like Ms. Winters, but I know that she can’t tell me how I ended up laid out on her desk!”

Logan glanced sideways at Rogue, then sat down rather dejectedly on a large boulder, “I-I’m sorry about that, Marie. I just…I just don’t like getting reprimanded like that. I’m not at all comfortable with letting my emotions out, and when I do they seem to just flood out, uncontrolled. There’s no middle ground and I don’t like others seeing me like that; especially an adult.”

Rogue moved to sit next to him, and Logan slid over on the large rock to make room. She didn’t quite know what to say in response to his revelation over his emotions. “Why don’t we go back to how I ended up on her desk? Hmmm? Then we’ll see about this uncontrollable flood.”

Logan flashed her that smile once again and all seemed right with the world. He explained how she had ‘swooned’, and he had carried her unconscious form back to the school. He honestly reveled that he hadn’t the slightest idea of what else to do, but he figured Ms. Winters would.

“What I was most afraid for is that I didn’t know what had caused you to swoon. Ms. Winters asked what was happening just before you did and I told her we had just been talking.”

Rogue now clearly recalled what they had been talking about. Logan had just told her, in not so many words, that he hoped they could explore their friendship evolving into something more. That if she were to investigate a career as a teacher, the arcane rules set out by the School Board would preclude the possibility of any sort of relationship from even beginning. Why such a declaration on Logan’s part should bring about so intense a reaction on her part puzzled her.

She suddenly realized she was speaking, “I recall our conversation, Logan. To be completely honest, I was both surprised and pleased by what you said. I have to admit that I hadn’t dared hope for such a change in our friendship. I was happy to have you in my life any way I could,” the heartfelt and honest statement seemed to surprise them both. A third party would have seen them both with wide-eyed expressions of shock, hope, happiness and several other diametric emotions.

When one of them could finally find their voice, it was Logan. It was again full with wonder and emotion. He hopped up from the rock, reaching for Rogue, “Do you really mean it, Marie? Oh, if you did, darling, I’d make you the happiest woman in the world, I swear it!”

Rogue found herself giggling at the outrageous display before her, but she was laughing with Logan in his emotions, not at him, as she realized that she did mean every word, “Oh, yes, Logan! I mean it all, more than you know!”

At this point she found herself hoisted into the air, Logan’s strong arms around her waist. They were twirling and laughing and reveling in the new direction they would take their relationship.



******************

I awoke with a start. I was dreaming, dreaming that I was spinning, or falling, or something. And just as I was sure I would hit something in the out of control way I was moving, I woke up. It took a moment or two to clear my head, and once it had the dream hit me full in the face like a brick wall. I’d been dreaming about Logan! Ok, not all that unusual under normal circumstances, but this was Edward Logan! The man in my dream was the Logan from 1912!

I heard myself groan as I flopped back down on my bed. My clock flashed at me, in angry, red numbers: 1:21. It was still the middle of the freakin’ night, I’d just woke myself up from what has to be the strangest Logan dream so far to date, and I was in no mood to try and go back to sleep. So I decided to do what any intelligent, red-blooded, American woman would do in such a case – I grabbed my robe and fuzzy slippers and went on the hunt for some ice cream!!

--------------------------------

I always seem to do my best thinking with a spoonful of frozen dairy product in my hand. There’s just something about a mouthful of cool, creaminess. I just let it sit there on my tongue, tilt my head back a little bit and let the melting wonder just glide down my throat.

Tonight’s choice was simplicity incarnate – Vanilla Bean. Ask anybody, if a company can make a good vanilla, the quality of their other flavors can only go up from there. If the vanilla sucks, there’s no hope for anything else.

So, I sat there at the center island in the kitchen, with said half gallon in front of me, and I reviewed what I could remember of the dream that woke me. I was up to maybe the third or fourth detail, when certain similarities with the real-life present began to make themselves known.

One - I was apparently one of Logan’s classmates. Not all that strange, unless you consider that when he’s here, Logan and I are companions within the walls of a very large school. I suppose we could probably be called “classmates” under the loosest definition of the word.
Two - I was considering becoming a teacher. Here, I am a teacher, albeit a part time one, but a teacher non-the-less, and I digress.
Three - Edward Logan and I were apparently very good friends. Ditto for the present, no need to explain further.
Four –

and this is the one that stood up, hollering and yelling, waving it’s arms, and insisted that I notice it,

Four – in both time lines (I’ve got to stop watching Quantum Leap re-runs on the Sci-Fi channel with Hank!), I’m hiding from Logan my desire for our friendship to deepen into something more.

On the upside of this, Edward Logan has the same thing goin’ on! On the downside, with present day Logan; I have no earthly clue!! Other than the fact that he seems to tolerate me better than almost everybody else in the place, there’s not much else in the way of evidence that he’s nursing a secret longing to drop to his knees and proclaim his ever undying love for me.

But it sure sounds damn good when ya say it like that!! Don’t it??

I realized there were a few other similarities, but the ones I’d already come up with were scary enough. Not that the similarities in and of themselves were scary, but the idea that the dream was more than a dream and that maybe there’s more to all this than just a few crossed wires in the old brain pan. Which at this moment is flashing brilliant with multiple ideas that will simply NOT wait until the light of day. If I’m gonna find out something that’ll freak me out, I may as well get it over with.

I put the Vanilla Bean away, toss the spoon in the sink and head up to my room to retrieve some papers. Then I’m on my way to the computer lab, again.

Chapter 8 by ct_xfan
----------Chapter 8--------------


I am about to lose what is left of my mind. That’s the only option left to me now, I know it. I say this because; I do not believe in alternate realities, alternate universes, quantum mechanics, time travel or any of those other things that make such entertaining plot devices for bad B-grade movies!!

I suppose I should explain the reason why I have decided that I’m simply going insane.

Well, it’s really very simple, you remember the other night, when that really weird dream woke me up and I headed down for some “think better” ice cream? Yeah, then I started in with the list of things that were slightly, uncomfortably, similar to my present circumstances, in my here and now, right? Right, so, said list then sent me off on yet another hunt for information.

Yeah, well, I went on that hunt with the hard core opinion that I wasn’t going to find jack squat. Taking into consideration the above referenced list of stuff I simply don’t believe in, I had no faith in the outlandishly ridiculous idea that I’d find anything about a ‘Marie LeRouge’ that attended the Lake Brantley School and graduated from it in 1912.

Uh-huh, well that’s pretty much where the theme music from the Twilght Zone started to play. I went back to that genealogy site, the one where I found Edward Logan’s parents, and I put the same stuff in the search engine that I did when I first found Edward. I punched in her name, the school, the town (since I knew this was correct from finding Edward), the graduating year, and the several options for year of birth.

And wouldn’tcha know? The first damn year of birth I guessed at?? Gave me the same damn thing as I got for Edward!! Heaven help me and Storm strike me down, I am not kidding!! Jean Marie LeRouge, born July 21, 1895, in Meridian Mississippi (just barely over the border from Brantchville, Alabama!!), attending Lake Brantley and graduating in 1912.

Now, let’s just break this down, shall we? First of all, ignore the fact this person even exists, ok? Just ignore that this individual, who, up until a whole five seconds ago I believed was just a figment of my imaginary dream world, REALLY EXISTS!! Ok, technicality; she existed……But forgetting that……Jean Marie LeRouge……Aside from how creepily weird it is to see Jean’s name so closely associated to mine; how freakin’weird is this last name?? ‘LeRouge’?? C’mon!! L-E-R-O-U-G-E? And what’s my code name?? Rogue!! R-O-G-U-E!!!!

But hey, it’s cool, I’m not hyperventilating, I’m maintaining, just move along.

Ok, moving along……what about this place of birth, hmmmm? Meridian, Mississippi??? AAAAGGHH!!

THAT’S IT!! I am now utterly and completely FREAKED! Freaked! As in, get the smelling salts, grab a paper bag, holler for a crash cart; because this chick is about to go totally ballistic, and there’s no way to stave it off!!

Ok, well it obviously was held off because I’m sitting here talking to you, aren’t I? Yeah, well, let’s not go into any more details and just suffice it to say that I found plenty of evidence to prove the existence of one Marie LeRouge. Thankfully, for my sanity, I also didn’t find any information on Marie’s ancestors OR descendents. Let’s face it, the last thing I need is to find a complete family tree that leads straight to yours truly, here. My brain simply could not handle that sort of shock. I don’t even think the Professor could dig in deep enough to get me outta that!!


So, here I sit, once again, in my room, surrounded by assorted paperwork pertaining now, not only to Logan’s past, but by all appearances, to my own as well. And that’s what I’m trying to wrap my little pea brain around this minute; is this Marie someone from my past? Is she some far flung ancestral relation? Is she ME, for gawd’s sake?? Am I some reincarnation of her? Is my Logan, her Logan??

Well, I suppose we’ve already come to a conclusion on that question. As soon as I saw that yearbook picture I had my answer there, didn’t I? And that was only further acknowledged by Professor Xavier.

Speaking of the Professor, I feel a strange calm settling over me. I’m thinking about what all he said when I went to ask him if I had organized this stuff on Edward Logan simply enough. He’d said that it was his belief that whoever or whatever was “in charge” couldn’t fault someone for thinking with their heart.

That’s a pretty powerful sounding phrase there; ‘thinking with your heart’.

Since I’ve practically dissected every other part of this dang dream, let’s just go for broke here. Edward Logan had a very close and long standing relationship with Marie LeRouge. He really wanted to make something more out of, but held back on his desires because he wanted her to be happy. And if becoming a teacher is what made her happy, then so be it. He only came clean with what he wanted after she/I called him on it. Strange, how I seemed to know him so well then, kinda like I do now, heh. He can’t get away with trying to put one over on me now or then! So, it wouldn’t be too far off to say that Edward was thinking with his heart when he decided to let Marie/me go after her/my wish to become a teacher.

Would it be too far flung to say that I’m thinking with my heart when I think about telling him what I’ve found? Heck, wasn’t I thinking with my heart when I first decided to go hunting for this stuff? What could I personally get out of telling Logan about what I’ve found?

Well, I do suppose if it were to bring Logan back to the mansion and get him to stay, that might be considered just a little selfish, couldn’t it? But, jeez! What woman doesn’t want to have the man they love near to them?? I mean, I don’t want to sound full of myself, but, if I haven’t been following my heart since that night in Laughlin City I sure as hell don’t know what I’ve been doing.

Ok, once again, just the facts……
First - I love him, simple as that, “The Big ‘L’”. NOT some stupid little girl hero worship crush!!
Second - I’d do anything for him, he knows that. Does he know the definition of “anything”, I doubt it, but I also doubt if he’s ready to hear it anyway.
Third - I want only the best for him; and I suppose, even though it would absolutely KILL ME, I have to admit that if Jean is the best for him then there’s nothing I can do to change that. I may not like it, I may hate admitting it, but it’s those damn “Fates”, “gods”, or the universe at work there and I can’t change ‘them’!! And if it’s in “their” plans that by giving Logan this info, he stays and he and Jean end up together, I guess I’ll just have to deal with that bridge if it gets built.

So, uh, anyhow, where was I?? Oh yeah, just the facts; I love him, I’d do anything for him, I only want the best for him. How it could be that handing him some kind of key to his past couldn’t be the best for him, I don’t know.

Besides, if the “Fates”, the “gods”, or the blasted universe didn’t have a hand in that dream, then where the hell did it come from???

So, after six quarts of assorted ice cream, half a bottle of migraine strength aspirin, and four days of talking to myself; I guess I’m right back where I was: waiting for Logan to get his cute ass back here so I can try and find out exactly what he wants to find out and hopefully let that guide me in deciding what, if anything, to tell him.

Great! Now all I have to do is just sit back and wait for the unmistakable sound of a stolen motorcycle!

Chapter 9 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
Things get a little angsty in this chappy. I couldn't help it, that darn bunny super glued his little paws to my hands and he just jumped all around on the keyboard until this is what came out.
----------Chapter 9-----------

I didn’t have too long to wait. About two weeks after I decided to lay everything about Edward Logan and Marie LeRouge to rest for the time being, Logan came back. I was just hanging out in the woods on the North side of the mansion’s property, at the little lake that breaks up the throng of trees when I heard the unmistakable drone of the motorcycle. I say “the” motorcycle because Scott and Logan still fight over who it belongs to. Even though Scott has a new bike that he built himself and says he likes it better than the old one; and Logan does all the maintenance and repairs to the other one, the argument continues. I think they just like to fight! Don’t tell either of them I made this comparison, but they act like some old married couple. So stuck in the rut of how they’ve always acted toward one another, they can’t get out of it. So, just like always, Logan rides in, Scott makes some snide comment about ‘his’ bike, Logan rises to the bait and replies with something mildly snarky which causes the same response from Scott. Then they glare at each other for a minute or two in stone-faced silence, take an about face and stalk off in their respective directions. I don’t even have to see it in person, I’ve seen it enough times I can picture it in my mind’s eye and just about count down the time between hearing the bike’s roar in and the slam of the front door.

I’m not disappointed; right on cue the front door slams. I can’t help but giggle a little, those two are so predictable!

But now the reality has struck me; Logan is home. Logan is home and I have information about his past. A very strong chill runs down my spine. The only thing keeping me from talking, is me. I’m a jumbled up mess of nerves, nervous, scared, excited. It’s all coursing through my body and I know if I don’t get it under control soon, it’ll be close enough to the surface that Logan will be able to sense it. Along with the usual ‘come home’ argument with Scott, the other thing that is a normal routine with Logan when he comes home is that he searches me out. Where ever I am, he finds me to let me know he’s home.

The last time he came home was just as we were suiting up to head to the Kominski. The Professor welcomed him psychically and brought him up to speed on the situation. He still stuck to his routine and sought me out before suiting up himself. He almost got an eyeful! Not that I’d have minded much! And it’s not like we don’t have a common changing area, but it’s sorta unspoken that the gals have the left side and the guys the right. It’s just the transition room from the lower level hallways to the hanger where the X-jet is, shortest distance between two points and all that stuff.

But he caused quite the ruckus when he turned ‘round that first bank of lockers! Kitty screeched, because she was facing towards him, luckily she was already dressed. I had my back to him. At least I had my pants on; but he stopped short at the large expanse of bare back I was showing off as I prepared to slip into the camisole I wear under my uniform.

You ever hear a wolverine stutter? No, I never had either, until then! He spun a quick180 just as I glanced over my shoulder at whatever it was that caused that sound to come outta Kitty. He sputtered and mumbled through about being home, apologizing about catching me changing, and having to get changed himself. I thought it was awfully cute! You never catch Logan off guard, it was such a Kodak moment!

Besides, I think working off the embarrassment helped in the fight. He seemed to have a bit more intensity at the library then I’m used to seeing. I wanted to make some smart ass comment to him about it when we were coming down off the adrenaline high; but thought better of it. I still think the look on his face woulda been priceless……

‘So, Logan, sugar, you fought really well today, very intense, very focused; should I let you catch an eyeful before every mission? It really seemed to help!’

Naw, not a good idea, at all.

So there I sat, knowing that any moment Logan would come tromping through the trees; or sneaking through trying to surprise me – depended on what kind of mood he was in. And I’d have to give the performance of my life. Acting perfectly normal, like nothing was up, like I didn’t have everything he ever wanted in a little red folder up in my room. And as if that wasn’t hard enough, I had to try and surreptitiously interrogate him about what ‘specifically’ he was looking for every time he took off on one of these jaunts of his. Yeah, right, nooooo problemo!


From somewhere off to my right I hear a small animal skitter across tree branches, something has startled it and it’s headed for safer territory. Logan must be in a fairly good mood if he’s trying to sneak up on me. I’ve never told him how much of his mutation I’ve retained, I figure what he doesn’t know is to my advantage!

The wind is of no assistance as I’m sitting on the shore of the lake upwind of the direction he’s coming from. Knowing this, I have to consciously keep my feelings in check. He’s downwind of me and therefore is getting advanced information on my mood and mindset before he ever sets eyes on me.

Through some kind of instinct, obviously Logan’s, I can calculate how far away he was when I heard the squirrel, or whatever it was, take off through the canopy of branches, and I stop him dead in his tracks.

“No sense trying to be the great hunter, Logan. I know you’re there.”

I’m slightly surprised at how close he is when his responding growl sends goose flesh down my arms. I turn around and see that he’s maybe six feet away. Maybe that calculation instinct thing needs a little repair.

“How’d ya do that, Marie? I was using my best stalking gait!” the tone in his voice betrays the menace that was in his growl.

I turn around and lay back down on the blanket I have spread out, not quite ignoring him, but putting him in his place once again, “That’s my secret and I’m certainly not tellin’ you !”

Without a word or a sound, I’m pounced on! Logan is straddling my lower body and holding my elbows in place with his hands. Yeah, I’d say he’s in a good mood! I’m a little surprised though, most of our wrestling takes place in the DR.

“Logan!! Get yer adamantium enhanced carcass offa me!! Just what do ya think you’re doin’?”

“What am I doin’? Whatcha mean ‘what am I doin’? I’m gonna sit right here on your legs until you tell me how you knew I was here!! There’s no way you shoulda known!!” He lets my arms go, and settles back on his heels, only putting a little bit of his weight on me. Just enough to keep me put, of course! He then crosses his arms over that beautiful chest and gives me his best glare.

What he’s not saying, is that he wants to know if he’s losing his touch. Yeah, right, like that could ever happen. Well, I guess I’d better say something, because I’m sure as hell not gonna be able to move him offa me.

“C’mon Logan! You’re not so hard to figure out ya know! You may not have realized it but you’ve become a creature of habit when you return to the mansion, here. You ride in, exchange insults with Scott, storm through the front door – slamming it usually – and then come looking for me to let me know you’re home. Not all that hard to connect the dots, sugar, not hard at all.”

I had to suppress the giggle that threatened to bubble up at the dejected and crestfallen face that slowly formed before me as I continued on and on with my analysis of his homecoming habits. I could tell by that face that I’d hit home and wouldn’t have to worry about Logan realizing I retained more of his mutations that he’s realized.

“Aw, hell, Marie! Is it that bad??” he grumbled, as he rolled to the side, onto his back, to lay next to me.

I rolled too, onto my front, propped up in my elbows so I could see him, “Of course not, sugar! I’m probably the only one that’s noticed, and that’s only because when you’re gone, I always have an ear out for the sound of the bike.” Like that was something I could lie to him about!

He turned onto his side to face me, supporting his head on one bent arm, a strange look on his face, “You ‘always’ keep an ear out?”

Those beautiful hazel eyes are practically boring into me. Did it suddenly get hot out here? Is Storm playing around with the temperature? Because I’m feeling awfully warm all of a sudden!

I have to avert my eyes, that stare of his is just too intense. Especially when I don’t understand the look on the face they’re staring out of. I can’t stop the stutter as I respond, “Y-yeah, I-I sorta keep one ear toward the main gates.”

I don’t see, but I hear the smile as he says, “That’s nice to know, darlin’.”

This is getting way too deep, I suppose the serious tone might be good for the discussion I need to have with him. And it’s not so strange for me to ask how his trip went. “So how’d it go? Did this lead from the Professor pan out into anything?” Yeah, that sounded good, normal, routine.

He’s laying on his back again, fingers laced behind his head. He’s staring up at the sky and seems to think a bit before answering me. “Nah, same old, same old it seems. Abandoned bases, empty rooms, dirt, dust…” His voice trails off.

Well, I’ve started it now, can’t turn back, “Logan?”

“Yeah?”

“Have you ever had a lead that didn’t have to do with the military?”

His head snaps ‘round and there’re those eyes again. I don’t think he has an answer for the question. I forge ahead, trying to make it make sense.

“I-I mean, it seems like every time you come back, we sit and talk about where you went, it’s always to some old military-like place. I-Is there a reason you’ve never gone to anyplace different? I know the nightmares always have to do with the labs, but you’ve had other dreams, right? I’ve had them and I know they’re not mine or Eric’s. I’ve seen things, horses, wagons, fields. Those are yours, aren’t they?”

Back to staring at the sky, it’s a little easier to talk without those hazel orbs bearing down on me. I can tell he’s thinking, the muscles of his jaw are going a mile a minute. Clench, relax, clench, relax; it’s a small miracle he hasn’t worn his teeth down to the gums. Then again, that might get fixed by the healing factor too, mightn’t it?

“Yeah,” he begins, “those’re mine. I don’t see much else than that though. It’s all so general, how many places across this continent has or has had horses and wagons and fields? It’s not a very good place to start. That stuff doesn’t even gimme a time frame.”

I nod in understanding, “But if one day, you woke up from a dream, and you remembered something; a-a name, a picture of a building, maybe a face you hadn’t ever seen before……would you go after that? Go after it with the intensity that you seem to go to the military bases?”

Logan must understand that it’s easier to talk if we’re not looking straight at one another. I noticed his jaw start to work again when I compared the passion that he has for the military leads to what sort of passion might come from a lead to somewhere else. I’m not sure if I’m treading on thin ice or not. It’s all stuff that I’m honestly and truly interested in, so I’m not being deceitful in my questions. And I don’t think ‘ulterior motives’ give off a smell. At least I hope not.

“Why’re you askin’ me questions like this, Marie?”

Yup, there it is. He can’t figure out why I’d be interested in stuff like this and whatever he’s getting from me in hormones and or pheromones isn’t helping. I’m glad I believe in the sincerity of these questions, otherwise this’d be a whole ‘nother kettle of fish.

“’Cause, I sit and wonder sometimes, when you’re gone for a really long time, what exactly you’re looking for.”

He’s looking me in the face again, his visage a blend surprise, question, disbelief and a couple of other things.

“Waddya mean ‘what I’m looking for exactly’? I’m looking for my past!! That’s a really stupid question, kid.”

As he speaks, he sits up, forearms on knees, heels dug into the grass at the edge of the blanket. He’s getting ornery and I know I shouldn’t push. But that ‘kid’ comment isn’t gonna be just let go of!

I sit up too, crossing my legs Indian style, I try to keep my voice even and calm, but he knows how that ‘kid’ thing gets under my skin!! No puns intended!

“It’s not a stupid question, Logan! It’s a request for specifics! ‘Your past’, such a wide, encompassing phrase, what does it mean? Are you looking for forgotten loved ones? Are you looking for some proof of your life? Are you looking to confirm or deny what you think you are?” I pause a minute to let these questions sink in, then let my dander up and go in for the kill, “Or are you looking to find those sons-a-bitches that cut you open and bonded that metal to your bones? Are you out there, running hither and yon on nothing more than a quest for revenge? Do you even care if you’ve got family out there wondering what the hell happened to you? Or are you only interested in shedding the blood of those that shed yours?”

I can’t help it, the more I spoke the louder I got. My voice reaching an almost piercing squeal. I could see in his face that not only had my voice hit him hard, but so had my words. Dammit!! The way that man can get my panties in a wad!! Both figuratively and literally!!

“Dammit Logan!” I begin again, trying to bring my voice down to a more natural tone, “have you ever thought about it from the other side? Well let me give it to you…if you were my husband, my boyfriend, my brother, my loved one, and you disappeared, seemingly from the face of the earth, I wouldn’t give a tinker’s damn ‘who’ was involved in it if I could only have you back!! Even if I were an old gray haired lady, I know that my love for you would not fade as the years went by. And if I only had an hour to live, I’d want that hour to be with the man I love by my side – not out gallivanting across the countryside trying to exact revenge on those that took him from me!”

I did it again, let my emotions get the better of me and by the time I was done with that little speech, I was standing up, hands on hips, waggling a finger at Logan like he was some six-year old! I know I looked ridiculous, but hell!! Like I said, that man can screw up my emotions in zero to sixty in three seconds flat!! I can’t believe the stuff I just revealed. It came tumbling out of my mouth before I even realized the words were forming in my head.

The information laying on the desk in my room is a distant memory. I made the mistake of putting myself in the place of his family and letting my heart take off from there. I can’t face him, not after all that I just said. He’d be looking at me like I was some sort of fool. I turn and run as fast as I can to the mansion. Not caring if there’s footsteps behind me.
Chapter 10 by ct_xfan
Logan’s Past 10

~these are thoughts~

----------------------

Frames rattle on the walls as I reach my room and slam the door shut. I’m still in a state of shock over what I’ve just done. I can’t believe all that has just tumbled out of my mouth in the last five minutes. I play and replay it all over in my head and simply cannot find the point in time where I lost all control.

I wanted to find out what Logan was looking for. Instead, what do I do?? I lose my ever lovin’ mind over a simple question, that’s what I do! What am I nuts?

I’m pacing now, up and down and across my room, berating myself, mentally smacking myself upside the head trying to slap some sense into me! Maybe I could claim temporary insanity? No, that wouldn’t work. If I try and claim that, then I’d have to explain everything and I’m definitely not going there!

“You see Logan, it’s just that I’m nuts, that’s all. See, I found out all about you and then had this crazy dream about us in the nineteen-teens and it turned out to all be true, some kinda temporal rift thing that let me see what we were like in another life. Didja know that we were in love before? Not just me in love with you but you were in love with me too!”

Right, that’d sound real cool, well, at least it’d prove the insanity claim!

----------------------

“Hey! The Wolf-meister! I thought I heard the roar of a stolen bike! When’d you get back?”

~Wh-what? Who the f---?~ “Oh, mall rat, hey…”

[gum *snap*] “Whatcha looking so lost for, Wolvie? Ferget where we keep the kitchen?”

*growl* “No! I haven’t forgotten where the kitchen is, Yellow!”

“Then whatcha look so outta sorts for?”

[harrumph]*grumble* “If you must know I just got screeched at by Rogue and I got no effin’ clue why!”

“Aah-ha! Barely back and already you’re in hot water, huh?”

*GROWL!* “I AM NOT IN HOT WATER!” [a little meeker] “I just don’t know what happened.”

“What’s all the yelling about?”

“Hey Mr. Summers! O’Wolvie here was just sayin’ how he’s in it pretty deep with Rogue. He’s barely home an hour and already she’s yellin’ at him fer somethin’!”

[smugly] “Fouled something up already, huh, Logan?”

“Watch it, Scooter! Otherwise you’ll end up breathin’ out the other side of yer chest! I didn’t do a damn thing! We were just talkin’ and the next thing I knew I was getting’ screamed at fer tellin’ Rogue she asked a stupid question.”

“You told Rogue that something she asked you was ‘stupid’? She is not a stupid woman, Logan! What in the heck did she ask you that could possibly have been interpreted as ‘stupid’?”

“She asked me what I was lookin’ for every time I went out after one o’the leads the Professor finds for me. Now what kind of friggin’ question is that?? Can ya tell me? I’m lookin’ for my goddamned past, fer crissakes!”

*sigh* “Logan, your ‘past’ could be a rather a large area in time to cover. Did you ever stop to think that Rogue was looking for something a little more specific?”

“Specific? Whatcha mean? Specific?” *BING*!! [Light bulb] “Ya mean like, am I lookin’ for family? Or, am I lookin’ for who I was…..”

*sigh* [again] “Yeah, Logan, something like that. You know, Rogue cares very much about you, did you ever stop to think that maybe she’s a little scared you might find some long lost family out there and she’d get pushed to the back of the line? Or maybe she’s afraid you might actually, someday find the men from the labs and she’s afraid you may never come home then.”

“Waddya mean ‘never come home’?? O’course I’ll be home! Why shouldn’t I come back?”

*sigh*, [with fingers pinching at bridge of nose] “Logan, I’m gonna put this in as few words as I can, with as few syllables as possible….”

*grrrrr-owl!*

“……and I want you to think very carefully about what I’m about to say. What would you do if you found the men, any of the men, from the lab? What would you do if you found that you had family out there somewhere? If you had a wife, kids….you’re always griping you could be older than Xavier…what about grandkids?? Are you looking for revenge? Are you looking for love? Whatever it is, what happens after you find it?”

----------------------

~ Goddamn that Scooter!! Where’s he get off questioning me?? [whiney voice] ‘what would you do??’ What the hell kinda question is that anyway?? ~

*grumble*

[whiney voice again] ~ ‘What would you do?’ just about as stupid a question as ‘what’re you looking for?’ THAT’S what it is!! A goddamn stupid question! ~

*grumble* - *mumble* - *grumble*

~ Hell, what would I do? If I found those fuckers from the lab I know damn well what I’d do! I gut ‘em all, that’s what! Nice ‘n slow, just like they did me! See how they like getting’ filleted like this morning’s catch!! ~

*grumble*

~ But family? That’s somethin’ I never thought of. Jeez! I never figger’d on maybe findin’ anybody out there I didn’t want to gut. I got no clue what I’d do then. An’ kids?!? I never gave a secon’ thought to havin’ kids. Fuck!! With all the screwin’ around I do remember, I never once thought I might have kids wanderin’ ‘round out there. Now Scooter goes and puts it in my head that I might?? Maybe even grandkids!! SHIT!! If I am as old as I think I am, there’s no tellin’ how many lines o’me might be out there.! ~

*mumble* - *grumble* - *mumble*

~ Aww, dammit!! I guess maybe Marie’s question wasn’t so stupid after all. Maybe I ought ta go and find her so I can apologize. Fuck that Scooter anyway!! Why the hell’d he have to be the one to clear all this shit up? He didn’t say nothin’ that sounded any different from what Marie said. So why the fuck did it make more sense comin’ from him?? And what the hell got her panties in a wad anyway?? So’s I said the question was stupid……issat so bad? Said the same thing to Scooter and he didn’t get all bent outta shape! Ok, maybe he sounded a little frustrated, but who ever knows with him? He seems to always sound that way! Frustrated, constipated, what’s the difference? ~

*mumble* - *grumble* - *BING*!! [Light bulb, again]

~ Oh fuck!! I did it again, didn’t I? I called her ‘kid’. Dammit, no wonder she got all pissy and in my face. Hells bells, yeah, I better go an’ find her, at least now I know what I’m apologizin’ for! ~

Chapter 11 by ct_xfan
Logan’s Past 11
~these are thoughts~

Logan is still thinking to himself……
----------------------

~What the hell is it with women anyway?? Why isn’t it possible to have a ‘normal’ conversation with one? Scooter said just about the same things as Marie did and it came across pretty well. I mean, sure, I was a little growly because he thought he had to break it down into little words for me; smart ass sonuvabitch! But I got what he was sayin’!

But Marie! Jeezus! Marie loses her gawdamned mind! Starts screamin’ at me, babblin’ on and on about bein’ ‘specific’, and wantin’ to know what shit ‘means’! ~

[*knock, knock*]

“Yeah, who is it? Waddya want?”

“Logan? It’s Storm, can I come in?”

[*squeak, rattle*, door opens]

“Yeah, yeah, Storm, watcha want? Can’t ya see I’m tryin’ ta work here?”

“Well, to be perfectly honest, Logan, no, I can’t! What I can tell you is perfectly obvious to every inhabitant on this floor as well as the majority of the students on the floor directly below us, is that you’re stomping around up here for Goddess knows what reason! I have been asked by the masses to request that if you must pace so, could you please at least remove your work boots? Not only would it save the sanity of almost everyone in this wing of the mansion, I do believe it will reduce the wear and tear on the hardwood floor of your room!”

[*squeak, rattle, SLAM*, door closes]

~Aww, hell! I guess I’ll havta shed these boots for those dainty-eared pansies around here, if I expect to keep the interruptions to a tolerable level. I don’t step that hard do I? Nah! Gotta be them, they’re all soft, don’t know how to handle a little inconvenient noise, damned momma’s boys, and girls I guess!~

[*tumble, thump; tumble, thump* boots get tossed across floor]

~Now! Where the hell was I?? Damn interruptions! Oh, yeah, Marie losing her freakin’ mind. I don’t think I caught half of whatever the hell she was screeching about. Who knew a human kid could reach those kind of decibels? What the hell was she getting’ so upset for anyway? We talk about a lot of shit, and give each other a lot of shit about what we talk about. So I said she had a stupid question, I’ve done it before, haven’t I? Sure I must have. I mean, hell, I know she’s a smart cookie, but even the Prof has his fair share of stupid things to say, and don’t let me get started on One-Eyes’ stupidity levels!! I’ll be talkin’ to m’self for the rest of the damned weekend!~

[*rattle, slide, scrape* window is opened]

~Ah, beautiful night! Nice cool breeze, think I’ll leave the window open to sleep.~

[*scratch, phiss* match is struck]

~Yup, just the right time o’night for that last cigar of the day. Hmmmm, what was it that Marie was hollerin’ about? If I were her brother, or her boyfriend, she said husband too didn’t she? Yeah, I think she did. She said she wouldn’t care who was responsible, Pppffft! Yeah, sure, she wouldn’t want to know who the dirty bastards were that took her sweet hubby away! Riiiiight!~

[all is quiet, a few crickets chirp in the extreme distance, only the flare of the burning end of his cigar lights the window to Logan’s room]

~Hmmm, but then, ya know, that’s just the damn problem! Women never act like they’re ‘spose to! Hell, somebody took away somebody I loved, not that I know what it freakin’ feels like; but I’d slice any SOB that tried to steal my bike! If bein’ in love is half as intense as that, I’d sure as hell wanna get the bastards that were responsible!~

[more smoking, more thinking]

~But then again……maybe if I got my bike back, ya know, all safe an’ sound; no scratches or dings or nothin’, maybe I’d be able to settle down for a little bit. I’d definitely take the time to make sure she really was ok…check the brakes over, make sure the fluid levels were right, give her a nice wash down; ya know, so she feels all better bein’ home. Probably fill the tank up fresh, nothin’ like a full stomach that’s for sure! Maybe after eatin’ go for a little ride, just her an’ me. Find someplace quiet so we can just sit and talk. That is one thing about Marie, I can talk to her, even if she’s not making sense. If it’s a nice night like tonight, we could take the bed rolls and just camp out, not hafta worry about the X-geeks and all the noisy kids around this pla---~

[*BING*!! Light bulb]

~WAIT A DAMN MINUTE!!! Back the truck up!! Where the hell did all that come from??? Campin’ out with Marie?!? I was thinkin’ about my bike---wasn’t I? Yeah, yeah, the bike, right. A ride, yeah, I was thinkin’ about a,-a nice long ride on a cool night like this. Jus’ her an’ me, takin’ it easy, leanin’ inta the curves, she’s all cold so she’s pressed up tight against me with her arms around my--~

[ --*-- ]

~I fuckin’ did it again! What the hell is goin’ on here?? Since when did my bike and Marie get to be some kinda interchangeable parts here?? I mean, sure, they’re both important ta me. Both are special, I mean, I’d get really pissed off if anything happened ta either of ‘em--~

[ --*--*--*-- ]

“Awww! SHIT!!”

[*squeak, rattle, SLAM*, door closes
*thump, thump, thump, thump* sock feet steps fading away ]
Chapter 12 by ct_xfan
Logan’s Past 12

---------------------------

Gawd knows what time it is, it’s just dark. I managed to evade Logan during dinner time; sneaked down for a quick bite while Chef and the others were just finishing the clean up. She wanted to know where I was during dinner. She answered her own question when she mentioned that she was surprised to see Logan sitting alone. I got a friendly, ‘I’m so sorry he’s such an ass’ smile from her and an extra serving of dessert to take back to my room. Somewhere in her past she must’ve had a Logan-like guy, she’s so understanding about what I go through with that man!

Now I’m just laying here, nothing but the moonlight streaming in through the windows. Edward Logan is staring up at me from the chest at the foot of my bed. Rolling over onto my back for a second, I remember how easy it was for Jean Marie to talk to him. I’d really like to know what the heck happened in the last hundred or so years! So much of him seems to be the same as the kid in that yearbook, but then so damn much is different too! I suppose it could just be the effects of age, but does that explanation really work when he can only remember that last 15 yearsor so?

My trusty computer beeps, it’s the sound that lets me know I’ve got mail. I got rid of that damned guy’s annoying voice ages ago. “You’ve got mail!” So blasted chipper! Nobody should be that happy, especially for just a sound bite!

I punch the power button for the monitor and wiggle the mouse. Up pops the picture of Jubes, Kitty and me from last summer. Logan called us the three stooges; I think he was covering up the bone chilling fear we instilled in him at being legal, alone and loose for a whole month down at one of Professor Xavier’s beach houses in the Keys! I seem to recall a flash of disbelief go across his face when we returned at the end of July, all together, each in one piece, and with no tickets, warnings or need to repay bail money!

I hit the bar at the bottom to open up my mail program. It’s something from Mandi. I haven’t talked to her for a couple a weeks. Lemme see, not since she helped me to confirm the existence of Jean Marie. I wonder what she’s got to say?

From: Mandi@BrantchilleLib.org Sent: Thursday, March 22, 2230hrs To: Rogue@Xavierschool.net Subject: Found this stuff…

Hey Rogue! Did some more hunting around after we talked the other day. I know I said that I’d given you all I found on Jean Marie, but I was wrong. Had to enlist the help of our head librarian, Ms. Geraldine, but she was excited to give a hand to the hunt! Seems her people, way back in the day, knew Jean’s people. How’s that for a kick in the teeth? If I hadn’t spoken to her about your inquiry, I wouldn’t have the stuff I’m sending you!

I was sort of psyched when Ms.G hauled all this stuff out, there’s definitely more on Jean than you and me found on Edward.

So, anyway, hope this stuff helps. Let me know how it all turns out for you!
Later,
M

Oh, holy shit. I mean it! Oh. Holy. Shit. At the bottom of the page, right after Mandi’s ‘M’ signature, I keep scrolling and the crap that’s rolling past my eyeballs is enough to turn my stomach. For bad or good, I don’t know yet. I suppose it’s good, but oh shit, that’s bad!

What’s the first thing to pop up? The damn yearbook picture, what else?

Oh. Holy. Shit.

I know! I know! I’m repeating myself! But there’s just nothing else to say!! Ya know how before I was wondering if Jean Marie was someone from my past, some ancestral relation? If she was ME or am I her or whatever the hell?? Well, those questions just became a lot more important,because as much as Edward Logan looks like my Logan, Jean Marie looks that much like me, maybe even more!! I said it before, and I’ll say itagain…

Oh. Holy. Shit.

And it just keeps getting better! (That’s sarcasm for you folks that can’t tell) Oh, yes, just oodles and oodles of better. There’s the yearbook picture, and here’s a lovely shot of Edward and Jean holding hands in front of a fence, and here’s another of Jean standing between two small horses (wonder if those are the twin colts? – no, NO! let’s not go there!). Here’s one that must be graduation day – caps and gowns all around– looks like the class picture, but Edward and Jean aren’t hard to spot; over on the edge of the group, rightfuckingnexttoeachother!! Get any closer kiddies and Ms. Winters is gonna tell y’all to get a room!!

Oh. Holy. Shit.

I know, there I go again; but you can’t see the photo that just rolled up. It’s a wedding photo. Yes, that’s what I said; A. WEDDING. PHOTO.

And of course, I make the mistake of thinking that this can’t possibly get any worse, so of course it does.

Because just as the wedding photo comes to a stop, mid page, taking up fully the entire computer screen, who the fuck comes stalking into my room without knocking??

Yeah, you got it, Logan.

Chapter 13 by ct_xfan
Logan’s Past 13
---------------------------

“Marie?! Ma--*”

You wouldn’t think it was so very hard to hit one little switch to turn off an appliance, would you? Just one little switch! Or, even easier, click one little mouse button to change windows? Yeah, nothing too hard about that is there? Heck no! But am I coordinated enough to do either? Hell no! And once again I find myself to be the fortunate one to witness a confused and sputtering wolverine! If the look on his face didn’t concern me so much I might actually laugh. But he’s none too happy.

Enhanced senses aside, all it takes is 20/20 vision and the photographic record of wedded bliss on my computer screen is clear as day to anyone.

“Marie! What the hell is that???”

“What the hell is what, Logan?”

“Th-th-that! That picture! On your computer! I-It looks like a goddamned wedding picture!”

Now, I could make a snide joke and call him something cute, like Captain Obvious, but I really don’t think he’s in the mood for something like that, do you? Nah, I didn’t think so either.

“Well, that really is a coincidence, Logan, it looks like a wedding photo because it is a wedding photo!” Can’t help but fold my arms over my chest and looked annoyed. It wasn’t a conscious thing, just came along for the ride while I was talking. Logan comes stomping over, leaning in, staring for all he’s worth at the computer. Forehead all screwed up, eyebrows knitted so close together I swear he just knitted two and is on his way to ‘pearling’ one!

“Tell me that isn’t you, Marie! Tell me right now! Because you are too young to be married!”

Can you tell that he’s ranting on pure emotion? It hasn’t registered that the photo is a sepia tone black and white. It hasn’t registered that the clothing is so far out of date, the costume department for Titanic: The Movie used this picture as inspiration. And last but certainly not least, he hasn’t noticed that the ‘me’ in the wedding dress in the photo is standing next to ‘him’ in a very sharp, but alas, also out of date, suit!

I ‘could’ go ahead and tell him that it’s not me; but is it? Or, isn’t it? Or, well, you know what I mean! I don’t want to drag it out and drive him totally insane. I mean, we all know that Wolverine is half way there ninety-nine percent of the time anyway, no sense in pushing that last percentage point for no reason. But something inside me is really very hesitant to try and answer that ridiculous question. More than likely it’s the part that has no freakin’ clue as to the damned answer!!

Do you suppose he’d pop the claws if I were honest with him and said I didn’t know? Yeah, I’m not sure about that either!

Aw, shit!

“Logan, Logan!” he’s starting to get that crazy look in his eye, I know I’m taking too damn long to answer him, but what the hell does he expect me to do?? Well, here’s hoping that I’m fast enough if the hardware does make an appearance!

“LOGAN!”

“Wha-huh?”

Well, I gotta give him credit for looking at least slightly taken aback. Don’t think I’ve ever yelled at him like that!

“Logan, sit the heck down and I will *try* and explain.”

“What the fuck are you talkin’ ‘bout, Marie? What d’ya mean ‘try an explain’?? What’s there to explain?? Either you’re married or your not, and ya better well not be, I’m tellin’ ya that right now!!”

“Logan, I swear, if you don’t lower your voice and stop yelling at me, I will not be responsible for what happens to ya when I let my ‘Southern charm’ out and decide to let it bash your hollow metal head in! NOW! SIT. THE FUCK. DOWN!”

Heh! Shoulda started using that tone of voice a long time ago! Logan just plopped down like a scolded puppy! I think I mighta just managed to scare him! Woo-hoo for me!!

“Ok, thank you. Now, before I start to explain this, ya gotta understand that I can’t explain ‘everything’ just yet.”

“Aw c’mon, Marie! Waddya mean ya can’t explain everything? Like I said, either you’re married or your not, what’s so hard about that?”

I swear, that head of his really is hollow!! “Logan, what I mean is exactly what I said! Not everything is as crystal clear as I’d like it to be at this point, and because of that I was NOT ready to talk to you about all this. But seeing as how you managed to stumble in here, unannounced, uninvited and without warning; as usual, I’m gonna try and do the best I can! So the least you can do is sit there, shut up, listen and hold the peanut gallery comments until I’m done! D’ya think you can do that? ‘Cause if you can’t, I’ll be more’n happy to haul your butt down to the med lab or the DR and secure you m’self before I start talking!!”

And here I thought a speechless Logan was such a rare thing! It’s becoming such an occurrence here, I’m thinking I might just have to remove it from the endangered species list!

But, ok, he seems to have settled, at least what passes for settled for Logan. Standing up and running my hands through my hair, I pace around a bit, trying to figure out where the hell to start. Some stupid smart ass from the recesses of my mind hollers out from the great abyss, ‘from the beginning!’ If I had the strength to figure out who it was, I’d hunt their fool mental ass down and kick it! But I’ve got more important crap to deal with right now, and hell! I might as well go with the only bit of advice I got…..

“Ok, Logan, the first thing I’m gonna warn ya is that you’ve gotta have kind of an open mind about some of this. It might seem a little too fantastic, but in a world with a memory and power sucking woman, a man with a metal enhanced skeleton and the world’s most powerful psychic, ‘fantastic’ sorta takes on a whole new definition if you catch my drift. Now, do ya think you can keep from bitin’ my head off if some of what I say sounds a little ‘out there’ at first? Or am I gonna havta get rough?”

Gotta give the man credit, he may look like he wants to tell me I’m full of shit, but I honestly think that curiosity has got this wolvie! He doesn’t sound very convinced, but he gives me his word, he’ll try and behave.

“I got no idea where the hell you’re headin’ with all this Marie, but I’ll listen. Don’t go bringin’ in any damned aliens or such nonsense, that’s where I draw the line!”

He’s got no idea what I’m gonna be tossin’ at him! “Not a problem, sugar. No aliens, I promise!” Just don’t lose it on me when I start babbling about time travelin’ dreams and screwed up alternate realities!

“Ok, well, it’s sort of like this……
Chapter 14 by ct_xfan
Logan’s Past 14
---------------------------

Well, I suppose I should be thankful that I’m still in once piece. Actually, thankful doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel. Dumbfounded, startled, shocked; the list could go on and on. Because the one thing I never expected Logan to do was nod at practically everything I said, not interrupt, then just up and walk out of my room.

I’ve never in my life been scared of him. Not when I first laid eyes on the cage fighting brawler, not when he first popped the claws at that stupid shit bigot at the bar, not even when he was driving off after ordering me outta his trailer.

But I’m scared of him now.

A sputtering Wolverine I can handle, a speechless Wolverine I can handle, I can even handle a pissed off Wolverine – hell I’m the only one that can handle a P-O-ed Wolverine! But whatever words could describe him as he walked out of my room, I don’t think I can handle any of those things. Heck, I can’t even find the words to use to describe him!! Scared? Maybe. Startled? Probably. Dumbfounded? Wait a minute, these words sound a little familiar.

Oh, yeah, heh, that’s how I’m feeling!

But Logan, the only word I can come up with is – blank. He was just, blank. He didn’t say anything, he didn’t make any faces, he didn’t have any questions. Even when I started in with the damn dream!! I thought for sure he’d call me on the carpet for that one!! Call me full o’shit and threaten me until I spilled who put me up to such a nasty trick as to fool with him about his past.

I thought the pictures and stuff would help. At least cause a change of expression. Do I dare admit that I secretly hoped for some sign of pleasure when he saw “our” wedding photo? He didn’t even ask if I knew anything about Jean Marie and me!! Was I her, was she me, am I some sorta reincarnation? Sure, I couldn’ta answered him, but, SHIT!! He at least coulda shown some damn curiosity!!

I’ve got no idea where he is right now. I’ve got no idea as to what to do right now. He certainly didn’t seem dangerous when he left here. I know that the Professor could sense if Logan were about to lose it; heck, he’s called me for de-fusing duty enough times. And since I haven’t gotten any calls on the brain phone, I can only assume he’s not about to shred the whole mansion. But there is one thing I’ve learned after all these years knowing Logan…never assume anything with him!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

~She did it. The kid actually did it. She found some of my past. An’ I don’t have a fuckin’ clue as to how to feel about it. How’s that for a kick in the teeth, huh? All these years, travelin’, huntin’, fightin’, brawlin’ all over the seven continents; well six anyway. Who the fuck goes to Antarctica because they want to??

All this time, goin’ all over Hell’s half acre lookin’ for this shit; and a little wisp of girl finds a whole folder full of stuff in a dusty damned library in an afternoon!

I’ll tell ya fer nothin’, my first impulse when she started in with that dream shit was ta call her full o’it! But, hell! Dream or not, ya can’t argue with what came of it. She really existed! This Jean Marie LeRouge. I’d be laughin’ my ass off if there weren’t papers and pictures to prove it. DAMN!! ‘Jean’! And that last name?? ‘LeRouge’? What the fuck is that about?

Aw, hell! Fuck the name, what the hell is up with Marie getting’ all this shit from a dream?? Ok, so she said this was gonna get a little ‘fantastic’. But info, on the past, from a dream??

*SNIKT*

Yup, there they are. Adamantium claws. Comin’ out m’knuckles…

*SNIKT*
…an goin’ right back in again. Skin and muscles and shit healin’ over like they was never there.

I got no backin’ to go questionin’ her on a fuckin’ dream!! If these damn things hadn’ta just popped outta my hands, then maybe I’d waltz right back up ta her room and ask her just what the fuck did she think she was pullin. But as long as the claws are still here, as long as she’s got the lethal skin, as long as Scooter’s got ta wear those damn ugly shades; I got no place questionin’ a simple dream.

Hell, a damn dream is the normal-est thing goin’ on around here!!

Fuck! What the fuck is normal anyway? Sure as shit ain’t runnin’ around in skin tight leather, flyin’ ‘cross the globe at mach 16 or whatever, fightin’ against bad guys intent on killin’ off the same damn fools I’d want ta kill if I hadn’ta run into Chuck! No, that sure as shit ain’t normal!

Yeah, ‘normal’…normal should be a man and his woman, a nice piece o’ground all their own. Little house, prob’ly built with ya own two hands. Some farmin’ or some ranchin’. Workin’ with whatever Mother Nature’ll give ya. Some good, honest, hands on labor and sweat. Good life surrounded by good people, like-minded, like ya’self.

It all sounds too damn good to be true. And yet, it all feels so familiar too.

I can’t get over this picture of this Jean Marie. Looks so damn much like *my*Marie. Yeah!! That’s what I said, asshole!! MY Marie! Can’t tell ya when the hell that changed, but it did. I guess it was always there, I just tried to ignore it. She’s still so fuckin’ young! But then, bein’ a hun’erd and twelve, I guess that makes pretty near everybody I know pretty damn young!!

I guess all this shit sorta explains all the screamin’ and yellin’ the other day in the woods when I got back. Gotta give Scooter the brownie points for figurin’ out she was probably damn scared about tellin’ me all this. It makes sense now, her wondering ‘what’ I’m lookin’ for. I bet she was thinking I’d be disappointed that this stuff didn’t have anything ta do with the bastards that gave me the hardware. She wanted to know how I’d feel about leads that didn’t have nothin’ ta do with the military, NOW I know why.

And how do ya feel, there, Logan?

Well, I tell ya, I’m surprised. I’m pleased in some way but don’t go askin’ for specifics on that right now, ‘cause I got nothin’ specific to say! I get this weird feelin’ in my chest when I look at the pictures of Jean Marie and me. I can’t say as I’m rememberin’ any of this stuff that *my*Marie found, at least not yet. But there is something familiar ticklin’ at the back of m’head when I look at these pictures. It’s a nice feeling, a little like when I think about how nervous Marie was at trying ta tell me all this. Something was buggin’ her but good, I knew that the second I opened the door to her room. Then I got all nuts on her about the damn picture up on her computer…nervous got shot right outta the window then, quickly replaced by antsy, then just flat out pissed!

But, I’m feelin’ good right about now. If I don’t think too hard, don’t try and think about all of it at one time; I can honestly say I feel good about this stuff. Tell anybody I said this and I’ll gut ya, but it’s nice to finally know that at one time I was human. Oh, sure, I was still obviously a mutant then, but then all I prob’ly had was the healin’ factor. But having somethin’ concrete now; showin’ I had a family, that I came from a family, that’s something I never even dared hoped to have.

I guess Marie and Scooter were right to ask if all I was after was revenge on those lab bastards. If I never hoped to find stuff like this, then I ‘spose revenge was all I had left to go after.

*YAWN*

Hell! Who knew so much thinkin’ could wear ya out so? Clock says it’s bout half past midnight. Guess I ought ta grab some shut eye. Definitely gotta talk ta Marie in th’mornin’. I know I kinda freaked her out by just walking outta her room. But saying I had ta process this shit is a damn understatement! Hmmm, wonder if I should try and talk to her now, maybe she’s too freaked ta try and sleep herself?
Chapter 15 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
~…~ thoughts to ones self
~/~ …~/~ thoughts between people

And if you can't tell, the 'Ice Cream Series' has seeped into my subconscious!!

Logan’s Past 15
---------------------------

It’s so very quiet in the mansion. Hard to believe that almost two hundred people live here, between the students, faculty and mansion staff. It’s not like I’ve never thought of it before, but tonight the quiet is almost deafening. It’s pushing one in the morning and I simply cannot sleep. I’ve lain in bed, thinking, reading, tossing, turning, remembering; and still I can’t come up with any answers to Logan’s response, or re-action, or whatever the hell it was, or wasn’t. Even my inner Logan is unusually quiet. I only just realized tonight, after Logan just up and walked out of my room, that Inner Logan has been very quiet since this whole thing began. I don’t know why it didn’t hit me before this. You’d think with all the stuff I found and copied, and read and reviewed he’d have something to say. But, no. And how ironic is it that it’s actually driving me nuts to have it so quiet in my head?! Yeah, that’s a bad joke, for sure.

All these scattered, completely disconnected thoughts are traipsing through my head as my body traipses around the mansion. Too much quiet in my bedroom and now too much quiet in the halls of the mansion and I’m finding myself ever closer to just trotting on down to Logan’s room and demanding some kind of answers.

But maybe before I make the definite decision on the hari-kari, I’ll just pop over to the kitchen. I just know there’s a half gallon of some flavor that’s calling my name, I’m just too far away at the moment to hear clearly which one it is!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

~*YAWN!* Dammit! I never knew that sleeping without nightmares could be just as shitty as sleeping with nightmares! Man, I need a cup o’coffee, bad!

What the hell is that smell?? Holy shit, is that bad! Did somebody leave the milk out or somethin’? Talk about ripe! Wait a sec, it’s not comin’ from the kitchen…what the hell? It’s coming from the rec room?!?

Aw, shit! Marie must’ve had just as shitty a night as I had. Looks like she fell asleep in here with a bucket of ice cream in her lap. How the hell is she still sleepin’ with that gawdawful stench? She must be really out of it. Let’s see if I can get this thing away from her and into a friggin’ trash bin.~

------------------------

~Ok, mission accomplished. Ice cream gone? Check. Marie undisturbed? Check. Rec room secured? Check. Cup of coffee the size of Long Island? Check. Now, let’s go see what the world’s strongest psychic can tell me about memory blocks…..

------------------------

~/~Come in, Logan.~/~

“Chuck, what have I told ya about stayin’ outta my head?!?”

“I apologize, Logan, you know it is simply habit that I keep a psychic finger on all the inhabitants of the mansion. I am especially sensitive to the area around my office, it is merely reflex to invite someone in when I am aware of their intent to see me.”

“Yeah, well, habit, reflex or whatever, could ya maybe just try and remember to just use the old voice box when it’s me? It’d…well, it’d just be nice, is all. You know how I feel about my head gettin’ messed with.”

“Of course, Logan, I will give it my utmost effort. Now, what brings you to my office so early on such a beautiful morning as this? Please, sit down.”

“Well, uh, it a,…seems that, uh, ….hmmm…”

“Logan, I know we *just* discussed your preference for having no psychic intrusion, but could I offer to take a look at whatever it is you seem to be having such trouble getting out?”

“NO! Uh, I mean, no,…no thank you,…I’ll uh, I’ll just lay it out there…..uh…. Well, it’s like this, um, Ah, Rogue seems to have done some digging around and, uh, well,… she’ssortacomeupwithsomeinfoonmypast.” ~Oh, yeah, that sounded really intelligent there, Logan, why not try and talk like ya got some brains next time!~

“I’m sorry, Logan, I didn’t seem to catch the last part of that, you said Rogue has done some kind of ‘digging’? Is this something that Ororo is going to be upset by? You know how she is about her gardens?!” ~I’m truly sorry, my friend, to torture you so, but better my torturing you by feigning ignorance; than you taking your anger out on Rogue or myself for her having confided in me!~

“No, no, this has nothing to do with ‘Ro. What I said was, Rogue did some research, beginning with something I found when I was out on that last lead you gave me. She seems to have found some of my past.”

There is a short moment of suitable quiet while Charles ponders this information that he’s ‘just’ been told.

“I see. Under normal circumstances I would believe this to be wonderful news, however, your tone of voice and body language tell me that you are not as thrilled as most would expect. What is it that’s troubling you about this? The information Rogue has uncovered, is it not positive?”

“Oh, it’s positive. Yeah, real, real positive. Seems she’s been able to find the ‘me’ that I was long before the hardware or the military.”

“Alright, this sounds quite promising, I’m still not understanding the reason why your reaction is not more gregarious.”

“Huh? Greg who?”

[chuckle] “Apologies, Logan. ‘Gregarious’ is not a who, but a what. Specifically an adjective, describing an action or reaction. In this case, meaning outgoing. I’m wondering why your reaction to the information Rogue has discovered isn’t more outwardly pleasant.”

Logan sits and stares at Charles, it appears that a response is not forthcoming,

[sigh] “Logan, Why. Aren’t. You. More. Happy. About this?” ~Certainly can’t make it any more plain than that.~

“Oh, well, I’d be a crap pot more happy about this stuff if I could remember any of it!” [frustrated sigh] “Rogue has all this information, pictures, papers, copies of deeds, and not one bit of it ringin’ any bells! Chuck, uh, I mean, ah, Charles…”

This change in attitude is immediately noticed by the psychic.

“… can you tell me why I can’t remember any of this, even when it’s right in front of my damn eyes??”

Charles leans back in his chair, elbows on the chair arms, fingers steepled as he thinks about what is being asked of him. Several minutes pass until finally, Charles drops his hands to his desk once more and leans in toward the colleague and friend that sits across from him.

“Logan, I could give you many reasons and possible diagnoses for any one of a number of scenarios that lead to memory dysfunction. Things from something as simple as a knock on the head to a traumatic experience that the brain sees as a threat to the actual survival of the mind, or body, or both, and so it wipes the memory from every and any route of connection to the conscious mind. Any of them, several of them, or none of them could be the reason why you are not making a conscious connection with what Rogue has found…”

“I feel a really big ‘but’ comin’ up, and it ain’t gonna be Scooter’s, is it?”

~I’ll choose to ignore that comment~ “yes…*but*, if you want to know the reason why your memories are still unobtainable, I’m afraid the only way to find that out is for m-…..”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, I figured it’d be that. The only way to find out the real reason my head is like Swiss cheese is ta let you or Jeannie, or knowin’ my luck, the both of ya, take a walk through my head and see what there really is ta see. I’m right aren’t I?”

Charles leans back once again in his chair, a relaxed posture. “Yes, my friend, I am afraid you are most correct. The mind is a most efficient but very intricate piece of biological machinery. Even the most advanced computers that man has managed to build, pale in comparison to all that the human brain is capable of. It would be like comparing a kindergartner’s crayon scribblings with the Mona Lisa. It has not even been officially investigated whether there is a difference between the ‘brain’ and the mind’. Whatever the cause of your memory blocks is specific unto you. Just as there is no one else in the world with your fingerprints, there can be no one else in the world with your exact mental processes.”

Logan takes in all that the Professor has said, it doesn’t take a telepath to know it is a very big and difficult decision for a man such as the Wolverine.

“Logan, before you decide about this, before thinking if this is something you even want to consider, think about this; you have something of your past. It’s more than you had a week ago. Is it possible it could it be enough? I can’t say that your blocks might not fall of their own accord. You may not even need me to help. But even if they stay in place, for whatever reason; is that such a terrible thing? This is a decision only you can make, my friend. Think on it long and hard, it’s like the word that is spoken in anger, once it’s out, you can’t take it back.”

Logan nods in agreement, “Thanks, Chuck, you’ve given me a lot to think about. I’ll get back with ya one way or another, ok?”

“That would be fine Logan, please, take your time, you know my office door is always open to you.”
Chapter 16 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
~…~ thoughts
Logan’s Past 16
---------------------------

~It just figures that there’s no easy answers! Not that I was expectin’ some kinda wave his hand, hocus pocus and there were all my memories, but something a hell of a sight better than ‘the only thing we can do is go for a walk around inside your head’. Damn! Chuck knows how I feel about that shit!~

Not noticing where he has wandered to while talking to himself, Logan raises his head to see that he’s made his way to Marie’s door.

~’Spose I oughta talk to Marie. Sounds like she’s up and moving around in there…~

------------------------

Ok, now where the hell did I put that ---

[*knock, knock*]

“Yeah? Who is it?”

“It’s, uh, it’s me, Marie.”

“C’mon in, sugar,” well this should be interesting, and here I thought I’d have to go hunting him down to get some answers about last night.

“Hey there, Marie. Uh, how’s it goin’?”

“It’s going pretty good I guess. H-how are you doing this morning?” He looks like he went ten rounds with Toad, not as bad as ten rounds with Sabretooth, but still not as great as a half decent night’s sleep.

“Oh, I-I’m doing pretty goo- aw, hell Marie! I barely slept last night!”

Logan drops down onto the bed, exhaustion and exasperation clear in his body language.

Really? I wouldn’t’ve ever guessed! “I’m sorry, Logan. I know I dumped a lot of stuff on ya, and so soon after ya just got back. It wasn’t fair of me to do that ..”

“Hell, Marie, it’s not your fault! I kinda came stormin’ in last night, unannounced just like ya said. If I’da had half the manners of a regular person I’d have at least knocked. If I had, then this whole thing wouldn’ta gone down like it did.”

“Yeah, uh, why were you in such a tizzy to talk to me last night?”

Rogue takes up a seat on the bed also, on the opposite side and corner from where Logan is sitting.

~Aw, hell! Guess I’m gonna have ta lay it out…~ “Well, after ya reamed me the new asshole yesterday, I was tryin’ ta figure out why ya went so ballistic. Yer friend the Mall Rat caught me comin’ inta the mansion, and when I growled at her over somethin’; One-Eye decided ta go stickin’ his nose in where it didn’t belong. So I had ta tell him what happened with the whole ‘stupid question’ thing and all the yellin’ and screechin’ ya did. I’m hatin’ ta have ta admit this, but ol’ Scooter actually said some stuff that made sense. And the stuff he said got me ta doin’ some more thinkin’…..and ….well…..”

I think that may be the most I’ve ever heard Logan say at one time! Even in the best of moods, he’s no Toastmasters Master of Ceremonies. And the fact that he’s actually admitting that Scott was right about something?? I sense that Twilight Zone music is gonna kick in again anytime now.

“Yeah? ‘And…well…’, what, Logan? What did you get to thinking ‘bout that shot you off like a rocket, hell bent on the destruction of my bedroom door?”

“Well, I just, ….I-I mean the thinkin’ an’ all, it, uh…”

“Logan? Sugar? Just spit it out, huh? Please?”

~Dammit!! I hate to sputter like this, soundin’ like a damn fool!~ “Well, I thought I mighta figured out what all you were really sayin’ when ya were doin’ all that screechin’ about if it was your boyfriend, or your husband that had disappeared…..”

Logan begins to noticeably tense, he suddenly can’t or won’t meet Marie’s eyes, a faded spot on his jeans is all at once, more interesting to him, and receives almost all his attention and concentration. It is a change in demeanor that does not go unnoticed, however, Marie has also become nervous at the possible implication of Logan’s answer to her next question.

“Logan, what *exactly* do you mean, when you say you ‘figured out’ what I was saying?”

Still not meeting Marie’s eyes, Logan quietly spoke, “I-I can’t explain anything exactly, Marie, but I got to thinkin’, and I realized if some - thing I cared about, got taken away from me, but I got it back; then, yeah, I’d probably, ya know, at first, be more concerned if everything was ok with y-….it. And I kinda realized that if that something did get back ta me without being dinged up or hurt or anything, I might could be happy with that and maybe not feel quite so much like I needed ta find who did it and gut ‘em.”

Marie sits very still, letting what Logan has said wash over her. She knows he’s not one to ever talk openly about ‘pansy-assed’ things, like emotions, but some things simply need to be clarified.

“What are ya saying, Logan?”

Logan stops, and looks at Rogue, something in his eyes spawns a feeling of déjà vu in her. The usual, serious, ‘Logan’ intensity is there, as always; but there’s something else. Something that makes her heart flutter. She’s startled to suddenly realize that he’s moved across the bed and is gently drawing her hands into his.

“Marie, ya know I’m not comfortable with letting my emotions out, ‘cause when I do, they always seem to be bad ones, and they end up just flooding out, uncontrolled. But, there’s somethin’ I wanna say here, so I’ll apologize now if it all comes out like a load o’manure.”

Marie smiled, and gave a small giggle. It spreads a warmth all through Logan, and he realizes it’s a familiar feeling.

“You’ve always been the one I could talk to. You’ve always been the one person I could count on to at least listen to my side of things before rushing to judgement. I never noticed the ‘routine’ of findin’ you, first thing when I get back, but once you pointed it out, it was so damned obvious.”

Logan swallowed hard, and continued.

“You see more than just the Wolverine. You see the man. YOU are the first person to not simply assume I was out for blood in my search for my past. And I really mean first! Even before me! YOU ask the damnedest questions! The ones that get me ta thinkin’. YOU asked; what am I lookin’ for? And really made me think about it. I’m sure ya got enough of me left up there…” Logan touched Marie’s temple gently, “ta know what I’d do, if I ever come across any o’those bastards from the labs.”

Marie nodded solemnly; it was something she didn’t hold against him. Those men simply did not qualify as human, she’d always agreed with him on that.

“But it wasn’t until yesterday that I got ta thinkin’ about the other things I maybe could find. Family?? I thought you were kiddin’! But when Scooter said the same exact thing, I knew ya weren’t, and that you were damned serious about the rest of it.”

Another short pause, and another hard swallow.

“Now, I don’t know how, but thinkin’ about something happenin’ ta my bike got all screwed up with thinkin’ about somethin’ happenin’ ta you. And I realized, the bike can get smashed ta bits, but, a bike? I can rebuild that. But, if somethin’ ever happened ta you….well….”

Logan had averted his eyes for those last few words, thinking he couldn’t handle the look of rejection he was sure would be in Marie’s eyes. These feelings were new and unexplored. Sure, they were good friends, hung out together, shared lots of good times. He knew she worried over him like a mother hen, but couldn’t see anything beyond that. Even when everyone in the mansion knew, if you messed with one you were messing with them both. This fact was one of the first things new residents were informed of, right after the grand tour and before room assignment.

Feeling Marie’s hands move to smooth around and hold his, Logan dared to raise his face, just for a peek. He found that same, warming smile, topped with eyes full of unshed tears and shining with so much emotion, it caught him off guard.

“Logan,” Marie began, "I have to admit that I never dared to dream for such a change in our friendship. I was always happy to just have you in my life any way I could,” the heartfelt statement seemed a surprise to them both. Any observer would see them both with wide-eyed expressions of shock, hope, happiness and several other converse emotions.

When one of them could finally find their voice, it was Logan. He sprung from his place on the bed, reaching for Marie, “Do ya mean it, Marie? If you do, darlin’, I’m gonna make you the happiest woman in the world, I swear!”

And, just as Logan was wrapping his arms around Marie to lift her into a bone-crushing hug, his vision blurred a moment, and the last thing he recalled was the ‘thudding’ sound of his knees hitting the floor.
Chapter 17 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get back to this. I had to do some research on other X-men to find out if I needed to create an OC to end this fic, or if one already existed with the powers I needed. This is the second to last chapter! Thanks to all that have read and given FB.
Logan’s Past 17
---------------------------

I had no idea what was going on when Logan collapsed into my arms. I was still in the midst of that déjà vu sorta disbelief at what we had just revealed to each other. But an unconscious Logan is not something to trifle with. I got him laid out on the floor, on his back, and checked him to make sure he was still breathing and then for any sort of injury. Not finding any I knew the next thing I had to do was get him to the med bay.

Even though everybody knows of my absorption of Carol’s powers, they still seem to get a little freaked out when I do something unexpected, like fly, or carry Logan’s unconscious form down the hallways. And just because I’ve got all her neat mutations, don’t think I’m totally impervious to regular stuff like strain and exhaustion. By the time I got down to the med bay and plopped Logan’s adamantium enhanced butt onto a bed, I was sweatin’ bullets.

Ok, so maybe the bullets were half from hauling him around the mansion and half was from wondering what the hell was going on with him. I mean, c’mon! We’d just had this other-worldly, emotional breakthrough and – whammo! He’s out cold like last night’s left over meatloaf.

So anyway, in strides Hank, looking his usual fuzzy self, polishing his glasses on the tail of his lab coat. He’s been here a couple of months now I guess, helping Jean out with the usual medical/doctor stuff. He’s in charge this week with Jean and Scott out of town for some ‘couple’ time.

His eyes are on me as he first clears the doorway to his office, but it doesn’t take him long to notice the big lump of unconscious Logan on the bed behind me.

“Oh! My stars and garters!” Yep, that’s our Hank for ya, whenever he pulls out the old ‘stars and garters’ you can be assured that you’ve just shocked him right down to his little blue toenails.

“Rogue, what’s happened here?”

“Logan and I were just sitting in my room talking, he leaned in to give me a hug and the next thing I know his metal enhanced carcass is passed out on me,” that sounds good, keep it simple for the time being,

Hank gave me a once over look, “He passed out on you?!? Are you injured?”

He’s so damn literal, “No Hank, I’m fine, I didn’t mean that Logan landed on top of me, I mean he was just all of a sudden limp and out cold in my arms.”

Sliding effortlessly into doctor mode, Hank gave Logan the full once over. Blood pressure, temperature, respiration count; he never even flinched when Hank stabbed him for the blood work. I think that surprised us both.

While standing around waiting for several of his machines to finish doing their voodoo to Logan’s blood, Hank turned to me and got inquisitive.

“There was no forewarning of this, Rogue? Logan didn’t fall pale or anything? Did he complain of feeling unwell?”

“No Hank, we were just sitting on my bed, talking –” about our recently revealed, very deep feelings for each other!

“Hmmmm, well, at this time his vital signs are stable and he doesn’t seem to be in any sort of physiological distress. The blood work and cultures I’ve drawn will take a bit of time before they’re complete. Is there anything, anything at all that you can think of, Rogue, that might have brought about this fainting spell?”

Well, yeah, sure! But I didn’t want to go blabbing Logan’s business around. I decided to just be honest, “Actually, Hank, there is, but it’s sort of a private matter for Logan.” I quirked my head in Logan’s general direction, “Do you think there’d be any problem with maybe having the Professor take a look around in there?”

Hank is a very sweet, empathetic person. Not that he has an empathic mutation; he just has this ability to read people. I think he could tell that this was a personal matter for me too. He smiled at me, laid a large furry paw on my shoulder and said, “As long as Xavier thinks it would pose no problem to his physical health, and you make sure I am here to counter any unforeseen complications, I don’t see why there would be a problem.”

I returned his smile, gratefully, and patted his paw. Hank then turned his attention to the myriad of machines that were whirring and ticking away over Logan’s blood.

I didn’t want to leave the med bay, so I pulled a chair over to the bed next to Logan and sat down. Taking a deep breath to sort of cleanse and center my mind, I closed my eyes and sent out a call to the Professor.

/Professor?/

~/~Yes, Rogue, what can I do for you?~/~

/I’m down in the med bay with Logan, he’s unconscious and Hank doesn’t know why./

~/~I see. I sense that you have a little more concern for his well-being right now than any of Logan’s other acquaintances here at the mansion?~/~

/Well, yes. He passed out while we were talking about some of the things from his past./

~/~And some discussion was had over what the future might hold?~/~

I could just picture the smirk on the Professor’s face. It’s not like you can hide stuff from a psychic, /Yes sir./

~/~I am already on my way. Relax your mind as well as your body, we will get to the bottom of this.~/~

It didn’t take the Professor long to make his way to the med bay. I appreciated his swift arrival. I think he can probably “hear” the strain someone’s under even if they’re just thinking words at him.

“Now then, let’s see if we can get our friend figured out. Hank, have you come to any conclusions from a medical standpoint as to why Logan is unconscious?”

Hank took a moment to polish his glasses once again. I’ve noticed he seems to do that a lot, I think he uses it as a sort of delay technique, to buy some time to gather his thoughts.

“No, Charles, as far as I can discern, there is no medical cause for Logan’s state.”

“Very well then, if the cause is not medical, let’s see about mental. Rogue, please tell me everything that took place right up until Logan fell unconscious.”

I would very much like to do just that, as I am just as eager to get to the bottom of this as anyone. I know it’s important for Hank to be here, in case anything the Professor does should cause a physical response, but I still feel that Logan would prefer to keep all this under wraps for as long as we can. My obvious reluctance to begin speaking seems to have made an impression on the Professor.

~/~Would you prefer to show me what happened, my dear?~/~

/Yes, I think that would be much easier, Professor. It’s not that I don’t trust Hank - /

~/~I understand completely, Logan is a very private person, even knowing how close he and Hank are, I agree that it would be best for him to decide with whom to share all this new information. Please, just relax and let your mind drift back to the conversation you were having before Logan collapsed. ~/~

I did as the Professor instructed. I tried to calm myself, to hush the din of questions, and worrying thoughts that were rushing around in my head. I closed my eyes and pictured my room; saw myself hunting for the book I wanted. I answered Logan’s knock….and the memory just kept on floating out of my head; like someone had hit the play button for the VCR.

---------------------------

I don’t know how long the Professor was poking around in my head, taking a look at what all had happened before Logan passed out. I just suddenly realized my eyes were open and I’d felt like I’d had a very refreshing nap. When I looked over to the bed where Logan was, I saw Hank hovering, stethoscope to Logan’s chest; and the Professor. He was sitting at the head of the bed with his hands on either side of Logan’s head. He had his head bowed in obvious concentration, so I kept from disturbing him.

I tip-toed over and lay a hand on Hank’s arm. I raised my eyebrows at him, in a ‘is everything all right’ look when he turned to me. He patted my hand and motioned for the both of us to move away from Logan and the Professor so we could talk.

“Logan is doing fine, Rogue.”

“How long was the Professor poking around in here?” I asked, tapping my own temple.

“I honestly can’t say, I’m sorry to report. I was still collecting data on Logan’s condition when I noticed that you were asleep and Charles had refocused his attentions on Logan.”

I continued to stare at Logan’s still form, “How long has he been working on Logan?”

Hank glanced at the large, twenty four hour clock that hung over the double door entrance to the med bay. “I’d say he’s been in that deep concentrative state for almost thirty minutes.”

I sighed deeply, the myriad of questions and wonderings beginning to pipe up again. I knew all I could do was sit and wait, so I resumed my position at Logan’s side, taking his hand in mine and brushing my lips over it.

At just that moment, some of Hank’s machines began to record changes in Logan’s heart rate and breathing. It was a little disturbing, the quiet of the room broken by the screech of alarms. I was immediately afraid I had done something wrong, when I noticed the Professor straighten up and a broad grin spread across his face.

“Ah, Rogue,” he began with a small stretch and a deep breath, “May I assume you had a restful respite?”

It was hard to concentrate on answering the Professor with Hank scurrying all over, pushing buttons and taking readings and generally going into doctor overload. But the Professor was apparently done with Logan and I wanted nothing more right this second than to know what he found.

“Yes, Professor, I woke feeling very rested, but I have to admit to being back to concerned, scared and very worried,” even without the words, I knew the feelings running rampant through my heart and mind were clearly written across my face.

A wry, enigmatic smile crossed the Professor’s face, and I didn’t know what to make of it. As he turned his chair ‘round and exited the med bay, the Professor announced, “Concerned and worried are very good things to feel, my dear. Scared is not something that should enter into this equation.” And with that cryptic statement, the med bay doors swooshed shut behind him.

I barely had time to try and decipher the Professor’s confusing comment when I heard the unmistakable groan of an unhappy Wolverine. My attention immediately returned to Logan’s now stirring form.

*grooooaaaannn*

The sounds and movements from the bed also had Hank’s immediate interest. He took his position at the other side of the bed. “Logan? Logan, can you hear me?” Hank grabbed onto Logan’s hand, “Logan, if you can hear me, squeeze my hand.”

There was another long, drawn out groan, and then actual words began to form, “Unnngggghhhh, my head! Hank, you’re a good buddy, but I ain’t holdin’ hands with ya!”

Hank chuckled good naturedly, as if he expected nothing else to flow forth from Logan’s lips. I, however, still wanted to know what the heck was going on. Logan was apparently coming around faster than even Hank thought possible, when his next statement caused a look of shock and surprise to flash across the good doctor’s face.

“I know yer concerned, darlin’; it’s rollin’ off of ya like the water over Niagara. Let me get m’bearings and we’ll talk, I promise.”

It didn’t take but two seconds for Hank to compose himself and return to full doctor mode. He fussed and fidgeted over Logan, who was actually quite patient with being a patient, for about twenty minutes before being informed that he was fine and needed to, quote, get the heck outta this over disinfected, fluorescent nightmare of a room; end quote. Logan then proceeded to hop down off the table, grab me by the hand and make his usual exit from a room, swagger and attitude firmly in place
Chapter 18 by ct_xfan
Author's Notes:
Finally!! The great American novel is finished! Okay, maybe not the great American novel, but this story is done!

Mucho thanks to all that have read, left feedback, given advice and kept up the cheerleading that finally got me to this last chappie. Now that it's over, I can say it was fun; but I think I'm going to stay with one shots and song fics from now on! They're much easier on the grey matter!

Hope you all enjoy the final chapter of All Will Be Revealed in It's Own Time

Logan’s Past 18
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We walked for quite some time, around the mansion, then outside. The silence companionable, I knew he’d talk when he was ready. My hand was still held firmly in his, only relinquished for the moment it took for him to light a cigar. I could tell by the way he savored the flavor of it, before blowing the smoke out in perfect rings, that he was thinking.

Strange thing was the look on his face. Normally if Logan is in some kind of deep thought, he still wears his trademark scowl. Now, it was nowhere to be seen. I don’t think I’d ever seen his face so smooth and calm before unless he was sleeping. The calmness combined with his open, hazel eyes was slightly unnerving.

“Aren’tcha gonna offer me a penny for m’thoughts?”

“I know you’ll talk when you’re ready, sugar. I don’t want to rush you.”

We had come to the edge of the woods on the North East side of the Professor’s property. I knew this was where Logan came when he couldn’t keep Wolverine on his usual tight reign. It was also where he came to just get away from all the noise, smells and general oppressiveness of the mansion. Logan likes wide open spaces, I can’t blame him there. Manys the time I’ve seen him walking out of these woods at the crack of dawn. I don’t have to ask if a nightmare took him out there. That tight, glass, water-filled box that haunts his sleeping hours makes me want some space just as much when it sneaks its way into my dream world.

He leads me over to a fallen spruce, and takes a seat on its moss covered trunk. He pulls me down beside him and rests his arm around my shoulders.

“Sorry if I scared ya back there.”

“I’d be lying if I said it was alright; ya did spook me. Takes a lot to put you down, never thought you’d go down without a fight.”

He sniggers at that. “Yeah, darlin, well I ‘spose I was fightin’ in some way.”

I look at him; he’s not looking at me so all I have to judge his mood by is his profile, “What do ya mean by that?” It’s like he’s not really hearing me, “Logan?”

He turns to look at me, his face still that unnerving calm. He fingers one of my platinum locks and tucks it away behind my ear. “Ya always looked so pretty with your hair piled up on top of ya head in that bun. Even when the wisps of gray would fall loose like they always did.”

It took me a moment to really hear what Logan had said. ‘the wisps of gray’ Totally of its own accord, my brain began to scroll through pictures, and stopped dead at one in particular. Edward Logan and Jean Marie stood with their arms around each others’ waists behind a table laden with simply wrapped gifts and a smallish but nicely decorated cake. Obviously a party of some sort. Edward was handsome as ever and Jean Marie looked as lovely as she did on her wedding day. It was a more recent picture of the couple, both had obviously aged, but in a very refined and distinguished way. Even the gray tresses in Jean Marie’s hair did nothing to detract from her loveliness. Logan had only seen the wedding photo up on my computer screen. He shouldn’t know what Jean Marie looked like in her later years.

~Her gray tresses.~ I thought to myself, ~Her gray tresses piled on top of her head in a messy top knot. A knot of hair on top of her head – her hair up in a bun!!~

“Oh my god, Logan! Y-you remember?!?”

Logan glanced down to his chest; I followed his gaze to discover I had him by the front of his shirt. My tiny fists wrapped up in flannel and t-shirt, holding on for dear life it seemed. He turned his eyes on me, and with my heart pounding in my ears, to the exclusion of almost all other sound, I lifted my eyes to meet his.

What I saw almost made me cry, a large, pure, disgustingly happy, completely sincere smile split his face in half. I felt his hands encompass mine and work them loose from his shirts. “Yeah, yeah darlin’, I do. Not everything, not much past a few years with our grandkids. But I remember many, many happy years we spent in that little four room house down the lane from our folks.” He stared off into the distance, not seeming to focus on anything in particular. He still had my hands wrapped in his and held tight to his chest.

“Do ya remember Barney and Sam? The twin colts me an’ m’dad delivered a few months before our graduation?”

I could only nod. Logan was still staring off into nothingness but I could tell he felt the change in my demeanor. His use of words like ‘our’ and ‘we’ began to grate on my nerves like nails on a chalkboard. Icy fingers of dread began to wind their way through my body. The twin colts, I knew of them only because of the dream. Logan was finally remembering things that were at least real, real bits and pieces of his past. They were a part of him again and hopefully their revelation would lead to more.

But what about me?

I only knew what I knew because of a dream. That damn dream! What was that dream? Was it a dream? Or was it just some crazy coincidence? Where did all those details come from? Oh, gods! Was I some long distant descendent of Edward Logan and Jean Marie Dunn? I couldn’t handle that! I’ve loved this man from the second I laid eyes on him. Like a woman loves a man. Not like a daughter to a father, not like a niece and uncle.

All of this flashed through my mind in milliseconds, just like the realization about Jean Marie’s hair. My world felt like it was falling down around me. It didn’t take enhanced senses to notice that my happiness for what Logan had regained was being overshadowed.

“What’s the matter, darlin’?” He knew damn well what was going through my head, but I appreciated him not calling me right out on it.

“Logan, sugar, I know you know how happy I am for ya, that at least some of this is startin’ ta break it’s way through that metal lined skull of yours,” my attempt at humor fell sort of flat, but I was still rewarded with a small grin, “but I can’t help but wonder; what does it all mean?” He knew exactly what I was talking about.

“Darlin’, I can’t answer that. I don’t have the slightest clue and even if I had one, I wouldn’t want ta go spoutin’ off about it just in case I was wrong. What I do know is this;...

*SNIKT*

...as long as these little buggers are still poppin’ outta my hands, and...

*SNIKT*

...I heal up like I do, and as long as Cyke has gotta wear those damn ugly shades of his, there ain’t much in this world that’s gonna surprise me anymore.”

He tipped my head with my chin and we locked eyes once again. “I know ya called Chuck down ta take look around in this metal encased coconut o’mine when Hank couldn’t figure out what was goin’ on. I’m pretty sure he knows what’s floated up from the depths here, ‘cause he sorta left me a mental post-it note. He says when we’re ready, and when we’re done with all we got to talk about, he’d like to see us in his office. It don’t have ta be right this second, it don’t even haveta be today. But I think the ol’codger’s got something up his sleeve. Ya ever notice how he can wink atcha even in your head?”

That got a smirk out of me. I knew exactly what Logan was talking about. It was the same impression I had when the Professor asked if I wasn’t just a little more concerned for Logan’s well-being than anyone else in the mansion. It didn’t hurt either, having the slight glimmer of hope that the Professor knew something maybe we didn’t.

---------------------------

That little glimmer is what got me through the night and half into the next day. Logan and I spent the better part of the day just talking some more, rehashing old news is more of what it felt like. He came over to where I was sitting for lunch.

“So, ya think ya might be ready to see the Professor, Marie?”

I was honest, “Logan, I got a part of me screaming for us to get on with it and another part that’s hiding in a dark corner, refusing to come out!”

He grunted out what could be construed as a laugh and said, “Well you just tell the lilly-livered part it’s just gonna haveta suck it up, ‘cause I already told Chuck we’d see him after lunch.”

“Y-y-you what?!?!?”

I don’t know if it was the gaping hole that opened up under my nose or the clattering of utensils that caught his attention first.
At least he had the common decency not to belly-laugh at me; I’m sure I must have looked like a prize Bass on the end of a hook. Logan very calmly took the chair across from me and took my hands in his, resting our arms on the table.

“Darlin’, you know as well as I do that the best way ta handle this is ta just meet it head on! You’re only driving ya’self crazy with the ‘what ifs’. We’ll see Chuck, find out what he’s got to say and then take it from there.”

As he spoke, he was rubbing small circles on the backs of my hands. I figured it must be an acupressure thing because against my better self, I began to feel not as jittery as a few seconds ago. It didn’t mean I didn’t still have my hackles up, “It’s easy for you ta face this head on, Logan! Your head is metal lined!! No matter what, you’ll come through without a scratch!” I lowered my voice along with my head, “What about me? I’d rather stay ignorant of anything that could hurt then go through the pain of knowing.”

He squeezed my hands and I looked up at him; into the clearest green eyes I’d ever seen on him. “Marie, we will do this together. We will talk to Chuck together, we will find out what he knows together and will decide what to do about anything that comes out of this knowledge, together. Am I making myself clear enough?”

If it were possible to move mountains with just the determination in a thought or word, Logan could set himself a range where ever he damn well pleased. How could I doubt that he’d be right there beside me after a speech like that? “You’re crystal, sugar, crystal clear.”

---------------------------

Now, let me be the first to admit that crystal clear is all well and good while plopped on your butt in the cafeteria. It is another whole matter when standing at the threshold to the Professor’s office, with your hand clenched around the hand of the man you hope you’ll get to keep for all time.

“He knows we’re here, doesn’t he?”

“Yeah, darlin’, he knows.”

It was apparent that the Professor was not going to push us into something we weren’t really and truly ready to do. How do I know this? Because we’ve been standing here for five solid minutes and neither one of us has gotten a brain phone message to ‘come in’.

“I-I guess one of us should knock? Huh?”

“Yeah, I guess it’s Chuck’s way of making us make sure we’re ready for this.”

“D-do ya think that’s a bad omen?”

“Darlin’, I don’t believe in omens, curses, hexes or the evil ey-,.... well, maybe the evil eye, I’ve gotten it enough from Scooter. C’mon, let’s get this party started.”

That earned him a smug grin from me, “You been listenin’ ta Jubes’ tunes again?”

As Logan raised our clasped hands to knock on the door, he whispered, “You try spreadin’ that ‘round and I’ll deny each and every word of it!”

---------------------------

“Good afternoon! Logan, Rogue, how are the two of you doing this afternoon?” the Professor was waayyyy too chipper for either Logan’s or my taste. Logan beat me to the come back.

“Ya know damn well how we’re doin’, Chuck! It don’t take senses like mine or yours to notice the level of tension in this room! Can we just get this over with?”

“Well certainly, Logan, if you do not wish to sit and visit a while that’s completely understandable. I still feel it my place to introduce you to a former student of mine,” the Professor motioned with his arm to one of the chairs that sits facing his desk, “Logan, Rogue, I’d like you to meet Alma.”

A woman came around the chair and offered her hand to us. She was no more than four feet tall! For all I knew she’d been standing there the whole time we had our exchange with the Professor. She was neither old nor young really, her waif-ish figure precluded any further assessment. She had lovely dark auburn hair with streaks of silver running through it. Not like my streaks, more like highlights; and it hung in a thick braid nearly all the way to the floor! She had the most adorable splash of freckles across her nose and cheeks. Any other description eluded me, as I instantly realized she looked exactly as I would envision a female leprechaun.

Logan gave her a once over glance and took her hand as delicately as he could muster and grunted a greeting. A quick, sidelong glance showed the Professor to be thoroughly enjoying the scene before him; as he sat, elbows on desk, fingers steepled, forefingers to his lips trying to assist in suppressing what I’m sure were giggles of amusement.

Alma inclined her head in greeting to Logan and turned her attention to me. I also took her hand in greeting, but just as I was about to say something, she spoke.

“Aye, Charles,” her speech was accented with the slightest of Scottish brogues, “this’s bein’ the one we’ve been talkin’ about now, isn’t it?”

Logan and I looked at each other, looked at Alma, then we all were looking at the Professor, who spoke with the calm and serenity of an inquiry to Cook about what she planned for dinner.

“Yes, Alma, this is the young woman who is so anxious to meet you.” He came wheeling out from around his desk, and shoo-ed us all back, away from him, and motioned for each of us to take a seat. I knew Logan would do no such thing, but kept hold of his hand as I took my place in the chair opposite Alma.

She skewered Logan with a look and I was surprised at not hearing the telltale growl I suspected. “An’ I suppose this’s bein’ the young man that’s causin’ all the frettin’ and fussin’?”

Again, that enigmatic smile from the Professor, “Yes, this is he, Alma.”

The small woman raised her eyebrow at Logan; he raised his back at her. If I weren’t so stressed out, it would be comical, but all I could do was sit there and watch the conversation go back and forth between this funny little woman and the Professor; talking about Logan and me as if we weren’t even there. I think Logan was having the same idea, because he spoke up.

“Ok, Chuck, ok! It’s after lunch and Rogue and I are here; we’ve met your little—“ *ahem* “we’ve met your friend, but I believe we have some business to attend to of a pretty private sort, don’t we???”

The look on the Professor’s face never faltered. “But Logan, Alma is here to help us with just that subject.”

Now, I heard the growl begin to form in Logan’s lower abdomen. I’m sure the Professor noticed that he was getting a little agitated also, as he continued on into further explanation.

“Alma is a former student of mine, she was taught and did teach under me here for several years before returning to her native soil ‘across the pond’, if you will. She is currently the Head Mistress at our sister school in Glasgow, Scotland. I envy her the European environment as the Europeans seem much more tolerant of their mutant brethren than their American counterparts.”

“Aye, that they are Charles,” her voice full of a melancholy I couldn’t find the bottommost depth to. “Your American humans seem to enjoy takin’ advantage of people, any people, no matter what it is that makes them the tiniest bit different. I was so very glad ta see Hank pull up outside the baggage area at the airport! I was neigh on’ (not) lookin’ forward to tryin’ ta get me a cab, I tell ya that for free.”

I finally found my voice and got out what I know Logan was about to say, “What can you do to help me?”

Alma’s warm brown eyes fell on me, she stood and came to stand in front of me taking both of my hands in hers. “Ah, child, sure’n your in deep, deep love with th’young man here, aye? Aye, that ya are. An’ any body with two eyes can see the aura o’love that surrounds ya both. Now, Charles tells me there’s a bit o’fear thats gone and set itself on your doorstep these last weeks, aye?”

“Y-yes,” it was all I could do to get that one word out.

“Aye. An’ it wouldna be a good thing to be keepin’ it ‘round here if it didn’t belong, aye?”

“AYE! Er-ah-, I mean yeah!” Leave it to Logan to pry a smile out of me, his strong hands on my shoulders also reminded me of what he’d said earlier; we’re doing this together.

At Logan’s exclamation, Alma also let a bright grin spread across her face. “Aye then! Let’s get ta kickin’ the booty o’that fear right outta the mansion! There’s no reason for it ta be makin’ itself t’home here.”

The bright smile on Alma’s face was mirrored on the Professor’s. I think, probably, Logan’s face held the same look of blank confusion as mine did. We exchanged looks, the four of us; and finally Logan found the courage to ask the question that was stuck in my throat.

“Do ya mean Ma--, Rogue and me, we got nothin’ ta worry about?”

Alma reached out and patted Logan on the arm. “Aye, that’s what I’m sayin’, love. There’s no more blood relation between the two a’you than there is between Hank an’m’self!”

No sooner had Alma gotten the ‘aye’ out, than I found myself airborne. Logan had scooped me out of the chair and was twirling me around the office like a bad Fred and Ginger re-make.

“WAIT! Wait! Logan! Logan, put me down a sec, sugar!” It was all I could do not to get caught up in his reverie, but I had to know how she knew this.

When my feet finally hit firm ground once again, I turned to Alma and asked simply, “How?”

This was where the Professor stepped in. “Alma has a very unique mutation, as a matter of fact, even all these years later I still hesitate to label it as such, but there is no other way to describe it.”

I looked between the two older occupants of the room expectantly, “Describe what?”

“In the simplest of terms, Alma is a Soul Searcher.”

In stereo, Logan and I responded, “A WHAT?”

The Professor continued, unflapped, “A Soul Searcher. Much in the way that Sage can sense the potential mutantcy in an individual; Alma is able to sense the history of an individual.”

“C’mon, Chuck, speak English will ya? What the heck do ya do there, Al?”

I looked at Logan and said, “I think the Professor is trying to say she’s some kind of psychic. Is that it?”

The Professor paused to think for a moment. “In the most banal definition of the word, I suppose it could be used here. But Alma is so much more. She is not a psychic in the sense that I am a psychic. Neither is she the sort of psychic seen on those police shows you seem to favor, Logan.”

Logan dropped his eyes from looking directly at the Professor. He was busted. *I* knew of his fondness for America’s Most Wanted, Cops and other such shows; it appears now that I’m not the only one.

The Professor continued, “But that is neither here nor there. What Alma is capable of doing is seeing beyond the current life of an individual.”

I was startled at this, “Professor, are you telling us that Alma can see past lives? I’m sorry but that’s just a little wild; even for a mansion full of mutants. I apologize, Alma, but how does someone know you’re not just telling them stuff they want to hear?”

I hated to throw down my gauntlet of disbelief so bluntly, but a few moments of Alma’s discomfort didn’t stand up to the life I hoped was spread out in front of me. I wanted something a little more concrete than the word of this little Scottish woman. Maybe even more concrete than the word of the Professor himself. Alma just smiled, and glanced at the Professor as she spoke.

“Sure’n she’s a smart one, Charles! She’s not the kind ta get the wool pulled over her eyes, no!” She shifted her gaze to Logan and me. “Other than m’word, child, and the word of others that’ve been on the receivin’ end of m’gift; I’m afraid there’s no way for me ta prove that what I’m tellin’ ya is the truth. Oh, sure’n there’s those that’ve gone huntin’ and diggin’ around; in the libraries and graveyards of their long dead ancestors. Those folks have found parallels to things I’ve told ‘em. But ta really and truly find bona fide proof of a past life; well, I ‘spose that’s somthin’ that just has ta be taken on faith.”

With a sad sort of smile, Alma resumed her place in the chair opposite me. I wanted so badly to believe what she was saying; but the fear that she may be wrong was riding so close to the surface.

~/~ Rogue, my dear, is it so much more fantastic to believe what Alma is saying than it was to half believe the dream you had? What else but hope and faith drove you to the computer lab in an attempt to prove the existence of Jean Marie? ~/~

~/~ But Professor, I didn’t expect to find anything! ~/~

~/~ How much of that expectation was real, and how much was it you preparing yourself to be disappointed? What is it they say? ‘Don’t expect too much and you’ll never be disappointed’? ~/~

Taking what the Professor said to heart, I looked around the room, at him, at Alma, and finally at Logan. “Sugar, pop ‘em for me, will ya?”

Logan’s brow furrowed in uncertainty, but the sound of claws extending quickly followed.

*SNIKT*

I gave him a slight nod, and he slid them back in. Taking his hand in my own, I watched as the cuts from where the deadly implements emerged slowly and neatly healed over, soon leaving no trace of any injury what-so-ever. I had my answer.

“I guess when something like this,” I squeezed Logan’s hand, “is part of your normal everyday life, you shouldn’t go around questioning things that may seem just as impossible!” I smiled up at Logan, and turned to Alma.

“Alma, please, tell us all you can about *our* life together back in Brantchville!”
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