Author's Chapter 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?”


“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.
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