Title: Past Subjunctive, Future Perfect|
Rating: Strong R (sexual situations, language, adult themes)
Summary: Logan finds his past and comes to regret it.
Category: Logan POV
Disclaimer: I own not. You sue not.
Archive: All the Usual Suspects
Dedication: This I'd like to dedicate to someone who has taught me that it's okay to be disturbing . . . Spyke Raven, dahling, you are the best. (Even if this isn't the story that you said it was okay to be disturbing about. *g*)
Behind-the-Fic: Okay, see, Donna has this friend we're going to call Veeector. And Veeector had this theory that he told Donna about one day and it was disturbing enough that it traumatized Donna and she came running to me crying "Say it's not so, Die, say it's not so!" Since I'm a certified bad-ass, I calmly said it wasn't so and then merrily went off and decided it just may well be so. Sorry Donna. :) You shoulda known better than to tell me something that wonderfully disturbing.
Warnings: This makes not-at-all-explicit mention of relationships between an adult and a minor. If you aren't comfortable with that . . . I mean, if it REALLY disturbs you--maybe you wanna be careful with this one.
I wasn't there to find my past.
I was there to kill some time and let a little girl grow a little older so that when I went back to woo her, I wouldn't have to tangle with her new and far too protective guardians.
I was there to be alone, because after I admitted that I cared it opened a whole new world of caring--and the pain that came along with caring--and I wasn't used to all those emotions and feelings.
I was there to let some wounds heal, because no matter how fast your skin closes up nothing can heal the sight of the girl you suddenly know you love lying lifeless in your arms and just. Not. Breathing.
I was there because I didn't want to leave, and the fact that I didn't told me that I had to--just one more time. And the base just offered a place to go, an excuse to leave.
I was there for a lot of reasons, but I wasn't there to find my past.
But I didn't kill much time, because I found something that drove me away. And I wasn't alone, because she was still with me, inside me. I didn't even heal--because by the time I got there the things that I found tore the scabs off the wounds and made them bleed.
I found my past.
She was fifteen, going on thirty. I looked thirty and was probably going on a hundred. I don't remember anything else, I don't even remember that--except for the fact that there was a picture in my file of us together. I was smiling and she was laughing and she had one arm cradled around the bulging stomach of a woman far gone into pregnancy.
My file. Of all the fucking things I expected to find, nothing had prepared me for finding the truth.
It said everything. It said how the government had been watching me for a few years, and how badly they wanted me for their little mutant-program. It said how they'd been looking for a way to get me, for a legal loophole to open up so they could arrest me. It said how the bastard had paid my girl's parents to press charges against me when it became clear she was pregnant.
Five thousand dollars. That was the value of my life. Five thousand dollars for fifteen years and my humanity and the chance to ever see my child and the woman who'd given birth to it--
Five thousand dollars to brand me a pedophile and lock me up.
I cried for the first time since I could remember, kneeling in the broken down room with the papers spread around my body. Cried because I was only supposed to be gone for a few weeks or a few months, and now I knew I could never, ever go back.
Because when I opened my mind and tried to think about Jean and her legs and her shoulders and all the things I could do to her, nothing happened, my body just sat there cold and unmoved--because all of my thoughts and passion and heat was reserved for a girl with brown hair and brown eyes--
Who was barely seventeen.
Five thousand dollars to brand me a pedophile--but they turned me into one for free.
I'm not sure what made me call her. It was the last place I wanted to think about, the last group of people I wanted playing any part in the life that I knew I had to live. I didn't want to talk to them--but I had dream where I was in his office again, and he told me I'd be safe there.
Only then in the dream he wasn't really talking to me, he was talking to the little girl with the big brown eyes, and he was talking about her being safe from me.
I called late at night, and I called her room. Scott answered the phone and sounded suspicious and then sounded worried, but I just told him I needed to talk to Jean, and a few moments later her voice was in my ears and it was warm and it was concerned and it did nothing to my body and that hurt most of all.
I told her I needed to meet her, and when she asked me to come to the school I started shaking so badly that the phone rattled against my face and she asked me if I was alright.
I told her I wasn't. I told her I'd found my past, and that I needed help. I don't think I'd ever said the word before--help--but I said it and I must have sounded desperate because before I hung up a few minutes later I'd given her the name of the hotel I was staying in and she'd promised to be there by sunrise.
The brought the jet. Storm and Jean but not Scott, and I was amazed that he'd let her come near me without him--but then I just laughed because I knew that Scott didn't have to worry anymore, because I was a sick twisted fuck who apparently only liked little girls.
I was still broken when they showed up, still soft and tender inside where the bruises hadn't quite healed, so I tossed the file on the table and let them read what was there, because I wanted them to know. I wanted the people guarding Marie to know what I was, so that when the wounds healed and I was hard and tough again, they'd protect her when I came for her.
And at that time, I didn't have any doubt that I would, because she was a sickness and a drug and I was sure my only cure was to see her grown up, because I knew now that I was a sick twisted fuck who liked little girls.
Jean read the file. She read it twice before she handed it to Ororo, and then she just stared at me.
"I want her." I said it and it sounded harsh and feral in my ears, and I knew it sounded worse in hers because she jumped and struggled to hide the alarmed look on her face. "Logan, she's--"
"I want her." And that time I growled it and Jean clenched her jaws and I could see her rubbing at her arms and shaking a little. "I'm not coming back with you."
I said it, and I prayed. I prayed that she'd tell me that it wasn't true, that having loved a young girl once didn't make me sick, that the government had branded me a twisted man but that I wasn't really one. I prayed that she'd shake her head and lay a hand on my body and tell me that it was foolish and that I was coming back and that was the end of the story.
"Maybe that would be best." It was all she said, and I could see Ororo almost jump and give Jean a shocked look, but my eyes were focused on hers and I could tell that she was changing every opinion she'd had about me, that she was reassessing every movement and action and that everything I was wasn't good enough for her anymore.
I think I almost cried, and that's when she did lay a hand on my arm and give it an awkward pat. "Just--just for a while, Logan. Give things some time--"
"And see if she grows out of it?" I snarled, and this time Ororo did jump and Jean snapped her hand back and I was so angry that I left the room and didn't come back until late that night when they were gone, and the file was too.
I was glad to see it go. I knew that she'd take it back and show it to Scott and he'd shake his head and say that he always knew there was something bad about that guy--and she'd show it to Charles who would shake his head and make sure that there was no way I could get to Marie.
And even though that's what I'd wanted--it didn't hurt any less to know.
The one thing I'd never anticipated was Jean showing it to Marie.
Three years went by and I knew that she was twenty and I still looked thirty because I don't think I've ever looked anything but thirty. I'd carried her around inside me the whole time, a sick fantasy that I never woke up from, and in my dreams she was seventeen and loved me and touched me with soft hands that tried to tell me that everything would be okay.
And in my dreams she was mine and only mine, and I could hold her and touch her and do all the things that dirty old men did to little girls and I hated myself for wanting it and hated myself more for not being able to tell if it was love or lust--if I wanted Marie because she was Marie or because she was a young beautiful girl.
She was twenty that year, and I could have gone home and solved the mystery if I'd had the courage. I could have walked through the doors and I could have looked at Marie, twenty and grown with a woman's body and soul--and I could have discovered if I was a sick old man or just a man in love.
I could have. I should have--but I didn't. I didn't because I was afraid. I was afraid I'd walk by her in the hallways and her scent wouldn't inflame me. I was afraid that the curves would be all wrong and that the hips I had such fantasies about would be nothing more than another part of another woman.
I was afraid to find out I didn't want her--because she was my last hope at being anything but sick. I was afraid to find out that five thousand dollars had bought more than my past--that it had bought my soul too.
Three years turned into four, and four into five--and now she was twenty-two and I made excuses why I couldn't go back. Because it had been so long. Because it hadn't been long enough.
And in all that time, I never envisioned her as anything other than a young girl who didn't know the danger she was in. I never knew that in the third year, the day she'd turned twenty, Jean had handed her my file and sat there while she read it.
I never knew that she'd cried when she found out why I hadn't come back.
I never knew that she'd discovered how to control her gift and that she'd been waiting--waiting for me to come home so she could show me.
I never knew that she'd grown angry when the fourth year passed and then the fifth, and I still hadn't come home to her.
All I knew was that in the sixth year, she decided she'd had enough.
I had fought too hard and drank too much, and I was dreaming too deeply when she showed up. She didn't knock and she didn't wait--she wrenched open the lock on my trailer door and hauled it open, and she was inside and staring at me by the time I managed to get to my feet.
I noticed two things.
She was holding a set of car keys in one hand, which meant she'd driven to find me and therefore was probably alone--because if one of the others had come with her they would have taken the plane.
And the fingers that were clenched so tightly around the keys--they were bare. No gloves. Bare pale skin, and I stared at it long and hard and was so relieved to feel a stirring in my groin at the sight of the skin that I almost cried.
"Look at me." The voice was deep and warm and a woman's voice, not a child's, and I obeyed and looked at her, at her face that had thinned out with age and at her body that had filled out and at the place where her shirt dove down into the valley between her breasts.and at her.
She didn't say anything else. She slammed the door shut behind her and grabbed my hair and pulled me down and kissed me with an expertise that no little girl would ever have, kissed me with her lips and her tongue and her hands pulling my face to hers and her body rubbing against mine.
My body froze, and for a terrified moment I was afraid--I was so afraid that it was going to betray me and tell me that I was a sick twisted fuck who liked little girls, and this was no little girl in my arms.
And then her hand slid down and she pressed it hard against me and pulled back and stared at me with tear filled eyes and her words came out as a whisper. "Please tell me you want me."
I pressed my hips into her hand and almost moaned because I wanted her so much, so deeply--because her scent was still engrained in my brain and the feel of that deadly flesh so close to me made me wild.
And then I kissed her, deeply and crazily until she was whimpering and her hands were sliding under my shirts and against my skin and mine were peeling each layer of clothing off of her so that I could reassure myself again and again that she was a woman she was a woman she was a woman . . .
We made love on the floor of my dirty trailer, and as I moaned and clutched her hips I realized that she wasn't a virgin, that she hadn't waited for me--and even though I should have been upset I wasn't, because it took some of the responsibility off of me. It wasn't as if I had stolen her childhood.
She collapsed on me and I watched the brown and white hair spread across my chest, and I felt her cheek pressed tightly to my skin, felt her slim fingers curled between my rough callused ones, and I almost hated myself for six wasted years.
"Why didn't you come back?" It was soft and muffled against my chest, and her breath tickled as she said it, skating across my skin and stirring passion to life again because it had been six long, wasted years since I'd accepted lust as an emotion I was allowed to have without guilt.
"I was scared." It was okay to murmur those words in the moment she'd created, with my hands running up and down her back and my eyes closed. It was safe, because she made me feel safe.
And then she lifted her head and gave me a long look. "Scared of me?"
"Scared for you," I whispered, and her hair brushed my chin as she tilted her head to the side and gave me an exasperated look.
"I was never in any danger, Logan." She tapped the side of her head and then tapped the side of mine and smiled. "I would have known if I was."
I wanted to protest but she was warm and in my arms and starting to squirm because it was becoming obvious that I wanted her again, wanted her forever--
So I kissed her and muttered, "We'll talk about this later, Marie," against her lips, and all she did was laugh her delighted laugh and roll us over so that she was underneath me and this time she scratched up my back and screamed when she came, and we fell asleep there on the floor, using her pants as a pillow and a blanket pulled from the bed.
We didn't say that we loved each other that night, because we were both too afraid. I was too afraid that I was sick and twisted and that I'd get back to the school and find some other little girl with wide eyes who would have a clean scent that tempted me, and I think she was too afraid that I'd run.
But one month turned to two turned to ten and the little girls annoyed me like they always had done and Marie made me hot and trembly inside and I wanted to be in her and part of her almost every moment of every day--and after I realized that it wasn't hard to say I loved her.
I wasn't there to find my past.
I was there to kill some time and let a woman grow a little wiser so she'd see that she was the only person for me.
I was there to be alone, because after I admitted that I loved her, other women grated on my nerves and other men were just rivals--because I wanted Marie to be mine and mine alone, and it was hard to share her with others, even for a little bit.
I was there to let some wounds heal, because no matter how fast your skin closes up nothing can heal the sight of the woman you love getting pale and scared when you did the most horrifying thing of your life and asked her to marry you.
I was there because I didn't want to leave, and the fact that I didn't told me that I had to--just one more time. And the base just offered a place to go--a place that had memories that reminded me of what I had been and what I could be, if the woman who had changed me only trusted me enough.
I was there for a lot of reasons, but I wasn't there to find my past.
But I didn't kill much time, because I found something that brought me back. And I wasn't alone, because she didn't wait long before she followed and joined me. I didn't even heal--because by the time I got there she was right behind me and she didn't just heal me, she remade me into a new person. A better person.
I found my future, and it was with her.