Untitled - Draft
Scott sat in front of the computer watching the small lines flip over and over on the screen. He always hated how his ruby quartz glasses made him see things like that. Those small lines didn't help him concentrate of the files in front of him, but he really couldn't blame his lack of attentions on them. It was his mind refusing to comprehend the words that he read, it was too busy thinking about other things. With a sigh of defeat he leaned back in his thick leather chair and carefully removed his glasses, closing his eyes tightly. He was determined to calm down so he could concentrate on the task at hand.
Since most of the team had left on a foolish quest for Destiny's diaries, it had left the school short of staff and teachers. It didn't help that the growing occurrence of mutant manifestations had doubled over the last few months, giving them more students to accommodate. If they could not meet the standards of basic teaching they would have to start turning them away, that was something he didn't want to happen. With only the founding team, Emma, and the recently returned Gambit, it took a lot of finagling to fill the schedule as well as he did. He hated to bring in outside help but it seemed it was going to be necessary. Not only did it put the team in a compromising position, it was difficult to find someone that would be willing to work in the strange environment. He would never find a person wanting to work with teenage mutants, it was still an area of prejudice, and very dangerous. The fact that he couldn't get through these damn files didn't help either!
Everytime he started his mind would wonder in a million directions. It seemed to do that a lot lately. He couldn't stop thinking about his wife...scratch that, his soon to be ex-wife. He knew another reconcile with Jean was impossible at this point. Too much had changed in both of them. He understood that it was always a possibility for them to grow apart, but he didn't expect it to be so easy to let go. Yes, it broke his heart. Yes, he wasn't a nice person to be around for about a week, which Logan had found out personally. There was so many emotions he always expected to feel that just weren't there. No surprise, no thought that he couldn't go on, no hopelessness, that he thought would accompany the break-up, it actually made him feel free. It was a feeling wrapped in guilt. He shouldn't feel like that, should he? It made him think that maybe they were wrong for each other to begin with.
He had to admit they didn't have too many choices, at least he didn't. They were stuck in a small mansion with a handful of others. After the link was created to help her with her powers it was kind of inevitable for them to be together, it was actually expected. Maybe that was what brought them together. Her need for him and his eagerness to please. Now that the link was severed, due to his so-called death, she realized she didn't need him and moved on. Even after he returned she was reluctant to reconnect with him and he had to admit he was too. In that event he had found a little more of himself, making it apparent that he didn't need her either. They tried to make it work anyway, because everyone expected it, but the changes were too much and over time the wedge between them grew larger. This was for the best, he told himself, but he couldn't help to feel a bit lonely. He had never been alone in his adult life and he wasn't liking the experience.
Scott shook his head, he couldn't let his mind drift back to thoughts like that. He would never get anything done if he was brooding. He placed his glasses back on his face and pushed his growing hair from his view. It was time to get back to business! He looked over the roster again and realized he had almost all the bases covered. There were only two classes without teacher. One was P.E., nothing to worry about. Logan was due back later that night, he should be ready to take over the class after Spring break. His only hole was French. The school was required to have at least one foreign language and he thought French would be perfect. It would give Gambit something to teach. He had begged Remy several times to teach the class, but he always declined. Giving him the typical 'I'm just a stupid southerner' act and telling him to get someone that knew something about school. He knew Gambit was capable of teaching that class and probably several others if he just tried. He was intelligent, he just refused to admit it or act it. He knew it was just Remy's confidence and self esteem. They was both shot full of holes and had been for a long time, recent events only making it worse. He did a good job of hiding it from everyone else, but not him.
He had always seen through that cocky attitude and long hair. Remy was just a nervous kid that had been hurt too many times to show his real self. Too afraid that if he let people see the real him that they would rip him apart. Once you start an act like that it is impossible to get out. The people around you start believing in the facade and it takes more and more to hide it all away. Soon you forget who you really are and begin believing the lie yourself. Scott knew all this because it was like looking in a mirror everytime he saw the younger man. Remy hid behind good looks and a fake accent, and he had hid behind a desk and a title. Both wearing different masks, but ultimately doing the same thing, hiding themselves from the world. Both afraid to live life because it hurt too much.
He sighed realizing that he had drifted off into thought again. At this rate brooding was going to be inevitable. He took a deep breath and sat up straight in his chair, buckling down to get his job done. He clicked the mouse to lift the screen saver and brought up the applicant files that the agent had delivered to him the night before. Flipping through he was disappointed with his choices. Mainly new teachers or ones that did not have the requirements he was looking for. He was about to give up when the last applicant's name caught his eye. Mr. Maurice Reaux. That had to be French, he hoped he knew it too. Scanning over the file he was a newer teacher, but knew fluent French and had taught for a short time at a school Scott knew taught mutant students. The teacher was transferring to the area and was looking for a new position. He thought it couldn't get more perfect until he read his current address. New Orleans. Another Cajun. Maybe this would give someone for Remy to talk to, someone to pull him out of this depression he has pulled himself into. Cause frankly it was scaring him.
He hadn't seen the Cajun in weeks. The fact that Hank had taken him off the roster without explanation concerned him as well. Remy usually hid away to lick his wounds, but he had been home for over a month and he was still locking himself away in his room. He was worried about him and even thought about going up there himself, but Logan had talked him out of it. Saying the kid would work through it in his own way. He realized the Logan probably feared him yelling at Remy, not talking. Which is justifiable, that is what he usually did. This time he really did just want to talk to the Cajun. He knew a little about what he was going through with the breakup and all. Well the break-up part anyway. Jean didn't cheat on him behind his back like Rogue had, but he knew how it hurt. The fact that Remy was going through this alone was probably bad. He should talk to him. Maybe Remy could use a friend, or maybe he could use one.
Realizing he was daydreaming, yet again, he decided to call the school's agent and make an appointment to see Mr. Reaux. He seemed a good candidate for the job and maybe the remedy for a teammate. If anything he could at least say he had done something in the four hours he had been sitting in the office.
Scott happily walked out of the Professors office. He had gotten a call back from the agent right before lunch and was informed that Mr. Reaux had already made the move to New York a few days before and he would be more then happy to meet with him this evening. The agent seemed to think that this was the teacher for them, that is why he had thrown in the applicant at the last minute. He had experience with mutants and he claimed to be one himself. This news only made Scott happier in his choice. The Professor agreed and they made the appointment for later that night, eager to meet what was quickly seeming to be there new staff member. Scott had made his way around the mansion and informed everyone of the applicants arrival. He wanted everyone to meet him and get a first impression, but not overwhelm him, so he made arrangements with everyone to meet him individually. All but one, Remy.
He had become worried to hear he wasn't the only one that hadn't seen the Cajun for days, no one had. Concerned he made his way to the third floor and lightly knocked on the door. He knocked louder when he got no response. Testing the doorknob he found it unlocked, which surprised him. He debated on going in. It would be an invasion of privacy, but something told him to check on the Cajun. He had failed the younger man several times since his arrival here, he wasn't going to do it again. "Remy, I'm coming in." he yelled in the room as he pushed the door open slowly. He peeked around the edge of the door when it caught on something.
Looking at the room he was astonished at it's disarray. Clothing, books, and other personal belongings were thrown all around the floor. Pictures, that once hung on the walls, had been torn and ripped, the frames broken and discarded in the corner. He couldn't imagine the anger it took to do so much damage. He pushed harder against the door, pushing away the clothes that blocked it, giving him enough room to walk in. Stepping over the mess he finally found Remy laying the wrong way across his bed.
He stumbled over to the large four poster bed and shook Remy's bare foot. "Remy?" He stood there for a moment starring at the Cajun's bare back before becoming worried that he got no response. He just laid motionless on his stomach, clothed in only a pair of jeans that hung off his hips, obviously too large for his small frame. He could see the young man's back rise and fall, so at least he was breathing. He wished he could see his face, but it was hanging off the opposite end of the bed along with his long arms. He took a seat on the edge of the bed and lightly shook Remy again, sighing in relief when the sound of mumbled words filled the quiet room.
"Gambit, wake up."
"Non..." Remy slurred in reply while turning over to his side, away from Scott.
Scott stood and made his way to the other side of the bed, curious of the loud clanking sound he heard when Remy rolled over. He cursed finding the floor covered in empty Jack Daniels bottles. "Damn it Remy!" Losing his patience he rolled Remy over and pulled him up, shaking him awake.
Remy's eyes flew open. Not quite aware of what was going on, he fought weakly to free himself before he threw up all over them.
Scott saw the Cajun turn green and let him go, smirking as Remy tripped over his own mess running to the bathroom, it served him right. Hearing the Cajun getting ill made him feel a little bad about shaking him though. He made his way to the bathroom and wet a small hand towel with cool water and waited for Remy's dry heaves to stop before handing it to him. "Here you go. Teach you not to do that again, won't it."
Remy snatched the towel from Scott and wiped his face on the way back to the bedroom. Scott followed and cursed again seeing Remy taking a swig from a new bottle of Whiskey. "This isn't helping!" He yelled while ripping the bottle away and stomping back towards the bathroom.
"Give that back, homme!" Remy slurred as he chased the older man into the bathroom. The last thing he wanted was to be sober. He starred in horror to see Scott pouring the last of his alcohol into the sink. "Cyke! That's my last bottle!"
Scott was almost humored by the Cajun's attempts to stop him. "Good! Maybe you will crawl out of this hell hole of a room to get more." He chucked the empty bottle into the trash and turned to see Remy had disappeared into the bedroom again. He took a seat next to the brooding young man on the edge of the bed. "You want to tell me what this drinking binge is all about?"
"Non." Remy replied sharply. Last thing he wanted to talk about was his problems.
Scott pushed, not willing to let this go. "Is this about Rogue?"
"Non! Why is everything always about Rogue?" Remy yelled, his temper flaring.
Scott sighed. He had seen this too many times before, about two months ago to be exact, when he first broke up with Jean. Now he knew how Logan felt trying to talk him out of his room. Logan hadn't given up on him, so he isn't going to give up of the Cajun. "Well, obviously that IS the problem or you wouldn't have just snapped at me."
"What are y' a damn shrink now? Spendin' too much time with the Professor?"
"No, if I were a shrink I would say that the reason you are yelling at me is because you don't want to face the truth and you are in denial. But I'm not a shrink, so I won't say that." Scott smiled when he heard Remy snort. At least the joke had relieved a bit of tension.
Remy laughed silently, it wasn't everyday that Scott made a joke. "So what are y' doin' here, mon ami?"
Scott was glad to hear he had at least gone from 'homme' to 'mon ami'. "I came to check on you. No one has seen you for days. I think I know why now. Seriously, you can't just sit up here and drink your life away."
"Why not, nothin' better to do."
"What if we needed you for a mission? You can't go intoxicated." Scott tried to reason.
"Wouldn't be goin' anyway. No powers 'member." Remy looked down at his hands. It felt odd not having his normal powers, almost numb. He knew it would be awhile before they came back, if ever. He probably wouldn't make it through everything else that comes first. God he needed a drink! "Hank said they're comin' back, but I think he's just sayin' that to cheer me up."
"Hank wouldn't lie to you. If he says there coming back then they are. You just have to be patient. Stop this drinking binge stuff, I'm sure it's not helping, and you're scaring me. Come out and show us you are alive once and awhile. We'll help you if you let us." Scott was surprised by his own honesty. He would help Remy, if he would just ask for it!
Remy smiled, hiding it under his long bangs. It was nice to know someone cared that he was around. It surprised the hell out of him that it was Scott, but nice all the same. "Guess I'll have to come out now that y' poured out my Jack. Have to go get more."
Scott playfully scowled and shook his head. "Well at least make sure you sober up first. I don't want to have to identify your body at the morgue." He ruffled Remy's already wild hair as he stood to leave. "Listen I have to go, we are meeting with a new French teacher. I would like you to meet him, at least give him your seal of approval since you won't teacher the class yourself."
Remy rolled his eyes. Scott would never give up! "I might be down, not promisin' nothin'."
Scott nodded as he left the room, closing the door behind him. He paused in the hall to digest what he had seen. Remy was in a deep hole and no matter how he tried to hide it he was falling in deeper. He needed someone to dig him out. He wasn't sure he would be the best one to do that, since he was in a simular situation himself not too long ago, but he had to try. First he needed to figure out exactly what was going on. He looked at his watch and found he had just enough time for a chat with Hank before his interview. Maybe the doctor could clear some of this up.
"Hey Hank." Scott greeted the doctor who had his feet propped up on the desk, seemingly in the middle of nothing but dozing off behind a magazine.
Hank quickly pulled his feet off the console and pretended he had been in deep thought, and not napping behind a very boring article in National Science Weekly. "Ah! Fearless Leader, what do I owe this honor?"
"Just came in to ask you something, about Gambit."
"Is our Acadian not feeling well? Should I make a house call?" Hank asked concerned.
"I don't know, you tell me. He reappears out of no where. Then you took him off active duty with no reason. He refuses to leave his room for anything. Oh, and he's trying to pickle his liver in Jack Daniels. He also thinks you are lying to him about his powers coming back. What I just saw was not the Remy I'm used to. I would like to know whats going on."
Hank sighed. "He is quite aware that his powers are coming back, that is why he returned to the mansion. They are just not returning the way he would like them to."
"What do you mean?"
Hank directed him to the back office and shut the door behind them. "I guess I should have told you and the Professor, but I wanted to give the abilities time to develop, to judge exactly what we are dealing with. He returned when he realized that his powers are manifesting again, as they did when he was a child. He explained to me that his kinetic powers, that we are most familiar with, were the last to develop. They should be the last now, as well. It is the other powers I am concerned with, and so is he."
"I was not aware he had any other powers! You're telling me he has been lying to us, again?"
Hank shook his head. "No, we have never witnessed these powers. Remy is an Omega level mutant with multiple abilities when he as full strength, but he has never handled all his powers at once. These were the abilities that Sinister negated before the massacre. Later, when he had Sinister reverse the procedure for time travel, he made sure this was omitted and kept dormant. He has never had the use of these powers since he has been here at the mansion. Somehow the power of the alien device has overridden the effects of the surgery and all of his mutant abilities are returning full force."
"Okay Hank, stop beating around the bush! What are these powers you keep refusing to talk about. It, them, they, and those isn't telling me anything!"
Hank wavered, fearing the reaction, but finally told Scott, knowing he could help if he truly wanted to. "They are empathic in nature."
"What? Remy is an empath? How strong is he? Is he a threat?"
Hank sighed, this is what he expected. When were they going to learn the young man was harmless, to them anyway. "This is why I didn't want to tell you. Remy has never been a threat to any of us and these new abilities don't change that. The powers are in there developing stages, very weak on the scale of things, so he is not strong enough to manipulate or hurt anyone, not that he would. He can't even read a person's emotions unless there is physical contact and the mind is practically broadcasting, but that will change with time. They will grow stronger and he is afraid he will not be able to control it like before. He returned here for help so he wouldn't have to choose the path he did before, and frankly I don't want him to go to the monster again either. So before you go shipping him off to God knows where, think about where he will go if we fail him, again."
"Hank! I am not going to go shipping him off anywhere. I want to help him as much as you do. I don't think he is going to hurt anyone intentionally, but unintentionally is a different story. I don't want him manipulating anyone when the powers go out of control."
"Right now he is only a threat to himself. This development has made his own emotions much stronger and he is not prepared for the onslaught. The things Remy has been through as of recent are bad enough. Then you tack on developing empathic abilities and you have something I don't think he is capable of handling on his own."
"That's why is drinking himself to death?"
"Yes, the situation has depressed him and the empathy has magnified it. Unfortunately, Remy's first reaction is to numb it with chemicals and to push people away, the total opposite of what he should be doing. He knows the empathy is returning and he is afraid it will effect his mind like it did before. He was almost driven into sensory overload insanity when he came in contact with other people's emotions the first time. He believes it will happen again, and that is quite possible, without training. He believes the only way out is to have the surgery like he had before."
"Is that what you think? Are you going to do that?"
"No, I said that is what he believes. In my theory it should be good for him to be in contact with people at the earlier stages, that way as the empathy grows stronger he can handle the stress and his shields will grow along with the power. I think help from Jean and maybe someone that knows a little about having someone scurrying around in their head would help a great deal. I hear you have a vacancy in your noggin."
Scott rolled his eyes when the doctor smiled at him. "You are saying someone like me should keep an eye on him."
"I am glad you agree with me. You are the perfect candidate. You are accustom to someone linking with you. I believe the others would take it as a surprise and hurt Remy more then help him. I am not asking you to stay with him 24/7 or to setup a link like you had with Jean. Just work with him and please take him something to eat on occasion. He is is far too under weight."
"Alright, I'll watch him, but I'm not promising anything. I need him to test this new French teacher anyway. That reminds me, this new applicant is coming over tonight, I would like everyone to meet him."
Hank raised an eyebrow. "You are bringing in outsiders?"
Scott shrugged. "No choice. I can't get Remy to teach the class himself and no one else knows enough about French to teach it. Knowing all this now I don't want to push Remy into it."
"I guess your right. I will try and make a trip up in a little while to meet him, but I'm not promising anything." Hank mocked with a wink. "Oh, and Scott, make sure to keep me up to date on Remy. If he falls too deep into depression I want to try some anti-depressants, and if his powers get too much, please let me know. I do not want to do something as rash as surgery, but if it is the only choice, I will have to take it."
"Let's hope it doesn't come to that." Scott mumble as he walked from the lab, now more worried for the young Cajun then he was before.
Scott followed the Professor and Mr. Reaux out of the office after a very nice interview. They were both very impressed with Mr. Reaux's qualifications and truthfulness. They were first surprised that he was in his mid-50's and just recently getting a teaching degree. He had explained that he had become ill when his mutant ability had manifested in his 20's and dropped out of college. Later he had learned to control the powers and straightened out his life, going back to school and becoming a teacher. He hoped he could teach other young mutants what he had learned the hard way.
Both the Professor and Scott were impressed with his words and hired him on the spot, deciding he would fit perfectly among the staff and students. They gave the new teacher a place at the mansion until he found an apartment close to the school grounds. They offered him permanent residence, but he declined, admitting that he loved teaching and his students, but sometimes he just needed to get away. The two men totally agreed and welcomed him to stay as long as he liked.
They toured the mansion, showing him the necessary rooms and his classroom that he would be teaching in after Spring Break. They had meet most of the other residents and he was welcomed warmly by all. His accent wasn't as strong as Remy's, but several people had recognized his mild southern twang under his intelligent voice. Getting the teacher a few playful 'Cajuns' and 'Gumbos', that the new teacher took jokingly. He was very glad to hear that he wasn't the first New Orleanen in the mansion and couldn't wait to meet his Acadian brother.
Scott couldn't wait to introduce the two either. Walking Mr. Reaux to his room he got his chance. Remy was standing on the third floor landing looking down at the small group as they ascended the stairs. He smiled wide and rushed ahead, eager to introduce Remy to Maurice. His smile quickly faded seeing that Remy was frozen in horror as he stared at the new teacher. He reached up and touched the younger man on his arm, hoping to bring him out of his shock, and was startled by the alien feelings that assaulted him. Horror, fear, anger and betrayal. He was about to ask what caused Remy to react so strongly when he pushed Scott aside to confront the man on the stairs below.
"What the hell are y' doin' here?" Remy yell down the long staircase.
Both men at the end of the staircase looked up in surprise. The Professor could not believe Remy would react so strongly to a stranger. He never thought Remy to have good manners, but this was unexceptable. He was about to question the young man, until he felt surprise and recognition come from the teacher next to him.
Maurice could not believe what he was seeing. At first he had no idea who the man was until he saw the eyes. Red on Black. Eyes he never thought he would see again. He felt like his fragile world just fell on top of his head. He had left New Orleans to escape this. "Le Diable Blanc!"
"Glad y' remembered y' connard, but it's Remy now! Get the fuck out of this house now!"
Hoping to diffuse the problem the Professor step in front of the new teacher. "Remy this is Mr. Reaux, our new teacher on staff. You will stop your assault immediately and show him respect.."
"Respect? I will NEVER respect this man! Y' shouldn't either! Y' sure as hell shouldn't let him near the children!"
Scott stood and watched in shock as Remy and the Professor argued back and forth. He had seen them fight about things before, but never like this. He found it strange that Maurice had said nothing in his own defense, or something to explain what was happening. Not that Remy was doing any better to explain, which wasn't helping his cause. There was some history between the two, and it was obviously not good. He reached out and grabbed Remy's arm when he staggered forward in his anger. Again the feelings assaulted him. The anger was great, but the fear and hurt was overwhelming. Either Hank wasn't aware of Remy's true strength, or these were very strong emotions coming from Remy. Scott tuned back into the argument when Remy stepped forward, jerking him forward with him.
"Fine! If he's stayin' here then I'm leavin'! I'm not stayin' under the same roof with his monster!" Remy marched down the stairs, quickly followed by Scott. When passing the two men Maurice reached between them and grabbed Remy, attempting to stop him. Remy screamed in terror, almost stumbling down the stairs while trying to tear away from him. Scott glared at the older man and pulled him away, taking a stance between the two Cajun's. "That's enough." he warned before chasing Remy into the kitchen. He managed to grab Remy before he got out the back door. "Remy! Stop! Don't leave like this! Tell me what is going on!"
Remy held on to the doorknob, ready to leave, wanting to leave. The only thing that held him back was the strong concern and worry coming off Scott. He grabbed the sides of his head when it all seemed to overwhelm him. "You have to make him leave!"
Scott caught Remy when his knees buckled, turning him around and sitting him in the chair. He was surprised to see tears rolling freely down his face. He had never seen Remy cry. He was beginning to hate Mr. Reaux, and he didn't even know why yet! "I can't make him leave until you tell me whats going on. What is he to you?"
"My worst nightmare." Remy whispered in reply.
Scott shuttered at the pure terror in Remy's quiet voice. He had never seen him this scared, not even in the face of their greatest enemies, but this 55 year old man scared the living hell out of him just by grabbing his arm. His hand still resting on Remy's arm let him feel the fierce emotions battling for attention. The fear, the regret, the anger and shame. He didn't know if it worked the same way for empaths as it did for telepaths, but he tried to comfort Remy with his mind like he had for Jean in the past. He broadcast his comforting thoughts while rubbing Remy's shoulder, glad to see that it was having an effect. "I promise I won't tell anyone that doesn't need to know. If this man bother's you this much then I want him out too. First you have to tell me what happened between the two of you before I can help."
Remy covered his face with his hands. He didn't want to tell anyone what he did. Wanted to just run away and act like he never saw Maurice again, but he couldn't do that. He had to think about the children in the mansion. He couldn't let them be hurt like he was. If he allowed that to happen it would be his fault as much as Maurice's. "Y' have to understand, I would only go to him if I was desperate. If I was starvin' or it was too cold to survive overnight. I had no choice. Maurice was the only one that wasn't afraid of me. I wouldn't have gone to him if there was another way, y' gotta believe me." Remy plead with Scott.
Scott nodded in understanding while still pushing comforting thoughts his way. "I believe you. What did you go to him for?"
"He would give me food and shelter, sometimes medicine if I was sick, but there was always a price." Remy saw Scott's eyebrows lift over the rims of his glasses in surprise. He feared the hatred that would come next. "Please, y' have to understand. I had nowhere else to go. I didn't want him to, but what else was I suppose to do?"
"Remy, did he molest you?" Scott asked in disbelief.
Remy nodded weakly as tears rolled down his face. "I'm sorry. I didn't want to, but I was so hungry."
Scott instinctly pulled Remy into his embrace. "Oh God Remy! This is not your fault. Why didn't you ever tell anyone? We would have helped you."
Remy froze when he was pulled into a hug. He expected disgust from the older man, not his support. The leader was not one known for hugging people, but he wasn't going to complain. He leaned into the older man, cherishing the comfort he found, not only physically, but mentally as well. Once the initial shock wore off he fell apart in Scott's arms. It was just too much for his mind to handle at one time.
Scott heard Remy's quiet crying turn to sobbing and tightened his embrace. "It's alright, let it go. Everything will be fine. I will tell the Professor and have Mr. Reaux removed immediately. I am sorry for bringing him here. I would have never asked him to stay if I had any idea. And here I thought this guy might help you. I thought it would be nice for you to have another Cajun around to talk to. I'm so sorry."
Remy pulled out of the embrace and rubbed his wet eyes. He was surprised to hear the Scott had thought of him when hiring the new teacher. "It's not your fault, y' didn't know. If y' want me to leave I will, I'll understand."
"No! I don't want you going anywhere. You need and deserve to be here. I am going to take you up to your room and I want you to stay there until I come back up. I will talk to the Professor and make sure he is gone before I come back up. I don't want him near you, and I don't want you leaving. Understand?"
Remy's heart warmed a bit feeling Scott's protectiveness and concern. It reminded him of his father when he first told him. Normally that wasn't the reaction. He was usually blamed for going back to the man, knowing what he would do or they would be disgusted. He expected that from Scott, but instead he got understanding and support. He wondered about it all the way up to his room. The leader had changed. He seemed a little more like how he was suppose to be. More open, less cold. He wondered if it had anything to do with the breakup with Jean. Maybe it was just his imagination, but whatever it was he liked it and that made him trust him just a little more. He promised not to runaway while Scott talked to the Professor. Instead he curled up in his armchair with his favorite blanket and dwelled in the feelings Scott left behind in his mind. Soon his friend would be back to tell him it was over, he hoped. The warm feeling encircling him, calming his mind and pulling him into sleep.
Scott burst into the Professor's door without knocking. He knew Xavier would sense him at the door, and he wasn't concerned about rudeness towards the other party sitting in the office. He had held in all of his anger and disgust until he had Remy safe in his room. He didn't want the Cajun believing those feelings were aimed towards him, because they were not. It was all geared towards Mr. Reaux. When he entered the room he refused to make eye contact with the teacher, afraid his anger would flare. He look straight to the Professor who seemed surprised by his abrupt entrance. "I'm sorry Sir, but I need to speak with you urgently."
"Scott please calm down." the Professor said calmly, trying to get a hold of the situation before it got out of hand. Scott obviously knew of Mr. Reaux's past troubles and was not taking it well. He was very surprised that Remy had told him, he didn't think there was that much trust between Gambit and Scott. "Please sit down and we will discuss this."
"I can't calm down. I think you need to ask Mr. Reaux what he failed to tell us before! I demand he be removed from the property immediately!"
Xavier sighed, this was defiantly going in the opposite direction then he planned. "If you are speaking of his past with Remy, he has told me and I do not believe it is a cause for dismissal. Mr. Reaux has admitted openly to me about his sickness and assured me that he has been reformed. I do believe that honesty deserves a chance to prove itself."
Scott's eyes widened in shock and disbelief, he could not believe what he was hearing. There was no possible way the Professor could have heard the same story he heard. "Sir, what he did was unforgivable! You could not have possible heard the same thing I heard from Remy or you would never allow this man in the house!"
Mr. Reaux cleared his throat to grab the young man's attention. When Scott turned to him he thanked the Gods that he wore the thick red glasses, he feared he would have seen fire behind the young man's eyes if he didn't. He could see where a reaction like this was inevitable from some people, he was glad the Professor saw different. "Please let me explain. There are some things that you do not understand and Remy may not have known either. I am very sorry for causing such an uproar. I never expected to see Le Diable Blanc..."
"It's Remy you bastard!" Scott barked.
Maurice raised his hand in signal to Xavier when he made attempts to reprimand his student. He expected such outburst. "I am sorry, I never knew him by that name. I never expected to see him here or anywhere for that matter. I left New Orleans to escape those parts of my life..."
"Or to out run the cops?" Scott sneered.
"No, just to out run the memories. What I did was unnjustified..."
"Unjustified? Is that what you call raping a child because they are starving and cold? I call it sick!"
"You are right Mr. Summers. I was sick, very ill indeed. My mutant abilities made it very difficult for me to think straight the majority of the times. My thoughts and actions were very chaotic, and with these episodes of madness came urges that I regretfully used Remy to satisfy. I am deeply sorry for what I did. Since then I have learned to control my mind and the chaotic thoughts and urges are gone, I assure you. I am not a threat to Remy or anyone else in this school."
Scott scoffed and turned to the Professor. "You cannot possible believe this."
"Scott you know very well my stance on reform. I believe Mr. Reaux would be a good example for the students in the school. He now knows that mutant abilities can ruin a person's life without proper training. I believe he is quite capable of holding this position and I think he could find great benefits in the teachings we offer here as well. His powers are very similar to Logan's in nature and look what we have done for him."
"There is one big difference here. When Logan loses control he destroys a piece of furniture. What happens when he loses control?" Scott questioned while pointing angrily at Mr. Reaux. "He'll rape Remy again, or he'll go after one of the children? That is unexceptable!"
"That will not happen." Mr. Reaux promised.
"And I believe him Scott, he is telling the truth."
"You can't do this, Sir! Fine, he deserves another chance, but not here! What about Remy? He is terrified of this man for good reason! He may not do it again, but that does not erase the fact that he did rape Remy before. Reform doesn't say that you put the criminal in the same environment as the victim. It's not fair to Remy. He deserves better then this."
"I believe Remy can cope with the arrangement. He of all people should understand second chances. If he requires someone to talk to about this he may come to me or go to Hank. I have given Mr. Reaux a 30 day probational period to evaluate his skills until the end of that time we will not discuss this matter again. I expect his classes to be on the schedule after the kids return from Spring Break. I also expect everyone, that includes you and Gambit, to respect Mr. Reaux as a guest of this house. My decision in final."
Scott clenched his jaw tightly and punched the edge of the desk in anger, trying to hold back all the things he wanted to say. He knew once the Professor made up his mind he would not be easily swayed until he was proven wrong. He stomped out of the room before his anger made him do something he didn't want to do. He could not believe that Xavier wanted to keep that monster in the house. It put everyone in danger, especially Remy. He stomped down the hall mindlessly, his thoughts chaotic with the days events and what he had found out about his teammate and mentor. He ripped open the door of the bedroom and slammed it behind him, only then realizing that he had stepped into an empty room.
Out of habit he had returned to the room he and Jean once shared. He slid down the wall, holding his hands to his temples to try and stop the headache that was forming. He wished then he still had Jean. She always made situations like this so much easier. She always seemed to know what to say and what to do to make it better. She should be here to calm him down, take the headache away, and tell him exactly what to do about the problem, but she wasn't here anymore. He was on his own and he had no idea what to do.
He pounded his fist against the wall as he stood to leave. He needed to get a hold of himself and go tell Remy. He knew the Cajun wasn't going to take it well, and why should he. This was another act of betrayal by his team, his family. He wondered just how many the younger man could take before completely being broken down. He hated to think this may be the last straw. He couldn't let that happen, he was determined to make this right. Remy deserved much better then what had been handed to him! He was going to get this guy out of here if it was the last thing he did. He didn't like going over the Professor's head, but his beliefs were clouding his judgments and his loyalties. Something had to be done.
Scott knocked lightly on the door before entering Remy's wreck of a room. At least he didn't have to worry about Remy destroying anything, he had pretty much done as much damage as he possible could. He sighed regretfully finding Remy curled up under a blanket on the corner chair. He hated to wake him from his peaceful sleep, it was probably the last he would get until Maurice was gone.
Remy sat up straight, rubbing his eyes sleepily, when finally noticing Scott's presence. He smiled at the older man until he noticed Scott wasn't smiling back. "He's gone right?" Remy asked pleadingly.
"I need to talk to you about that. The Professor wants to let him stay for a while."
"Why? I don't understand! Did y' tell him what he did?"
"Mr. Reaux told him everything. Said that he was sick..."
"Of course he was sick! Y' have to be sick to do that to a eight year old! Do y' think I was the only one? He'll do it 'gain! Maybe not me, but one of the kids. Y' are givin' him what he wants! A whole school of kids to hurt!"
Scott took a seat on the arm of the chair and steadied Remy, who had began to tremble. "He said that he is better now. That he has controlled his powers and that is what made him ill. Professor wants to give him a chance."
"Non! He's lyin'. Y' have to believe me, he's lyin'! He hasn't changed, he still wants to hurt me."
"How do you know that?"
Remy tapped his head. "I can feel it."
"Your empathy?" Scott nodded seeing his surprise from Remy. "I know about it, Hank told me. You felt him?"
"Oui, when he grabbed me on the stairs. What I felt was the same thing I felt when he hurt me before. It's horrible. It's like lust mixed with every fowl emotion y' could ever imagine. It's the worst feelin' I've ever felt. He's not better, he's just learned to hide it. He's going to hurt someone and I'm not stickin' around to let it be me!"
Scott was surprised to hear that Remy had already started developing his powers at eight. He couldn't imagine the pain it caused to not only be raped at such a young age, but feeling the dark emotions behind it as well. He knew he couldn't let Remy go, not with those memories being brought back to the surface, plus everything that had happened before this! "No, you have to stay. You need to be here so we can help you with your powers. What you just told me may be what we need to get him out of here. I just need something to convince the Professor that he is a threat and this may be it. Somehow Reaux is hiding it all from the Professor."
"Maurice may think it is the truth himself, that's why. If he thinks he's better, then the Professor don't feel the lie, but no one can hide their true feelings. With empathy y' can usually tell what people are feelin' before they do. That's why I hate it. I don't like knowin' what people really feel, it's usually not good. Most people tell ya one thing to y' face and feel all together different."
"This is why you won't leave this room? You're afraid of what everyone really thinks about you?" He saw in the Cajun's eyes that he had hit the bullseye. How could he have been so blind. He knelt down in front of Remy, putting his hands on each arm rest. "I want you to stay. I want to help you, and I know you can feel that I'm not lying. I'm concerned about you and I really want to get this guy out of here so that he doesn't hurt you anymore. Please, give me a chance to get him out before you leave." Scott placed his hand on Remy's bare shoulder to hopefully prove he wasn't lying. He passed on as much concern and compassion as he could to comfort the Cajun. It hurt to see the younger man's eyes fill with tears at a gesture.
"I'll stay, but y' have to keep him 'way from the kids until he's gone. Promise me that."
"Promise. It's Spring Break so all the kids have left except for a handful and Jean is taking them to the beach for most of the week. I will watch over you, and Logan is coming home tonight, so he will be right across the hall. So don't worry, you're safe."
Remy nodded, trying hard to believe what Scott was saying. He was safe. Scott would protect him. Those words didn't seem to calm his mind enough and the silent tears turned to sobs. He hated being this emotional!
Scott felt the fear from Remy's mind and pulled him into a hug again. It felt a bit odd, but it had calmed him the first time, he hoped it would do it again. "Everything is going to be alright. What you just told me I will tell to the Professor. That should be enough to sway him. We'll get him out of here, I promise." He held Remy in his arms until he quieted, coaxing him to sleep with calming feelings pushed over the weak link they held. He was glad he had been used to this. The things he learned through the connection with Jean had helped a great deal with Remy's empathy. When the Cajun was sound he laid him back against the chair and covered him again, letting him rest in peace. He hated to leave him, but he needed to tell the Professor what Remy had told him, this had to be the key to getting this man out of the mansion. The sooner that happened the better. Before pulling the door closed he flipped the lock, making sure no one would get in unless Remy let them in. He would just have to wake him up when he returned which he hoped would be soon, with good news.
Scott practical wrapped around the corner to the Professor's office before he heard the voices echo through the halls. He quickly pressed himself against the wall and made sure to stay out of the view of the three men that were in mid conversation. By what was being discussed he could tell it was just a normal introduction so he didn't feel all that bad about eavesdropping. He made sure his shields were tight and peeked around the corner of the wall catching Logan's eye before hiding himself away again. He was sure that his friend knew he was there anyway, this at least told him that he needed to talk without getting the other two men's attention. He stood patiently and waited for Logan to excuse himself and come over to where he was.
"Is there a reason you're hidin' from Chuck?" Logan asked while dropping his heavy duffle bag onto the floor beside him.
Scott wasn't paying attention. Too busy snooping around the corner to make sure the coast was clear. "Are they gone?"
"Yea they're gone. Chuck went to his room and that new guy is headin' upstairs. They said they were goin' to bed, which is what I would like to be doin', so why am I standin' here with you?" Logan was quickly losing his patience. He knew he shouldn't have left. The whole place had gone nuts while he was away. Bringing in outsiders, Scott hiding from the Professor, what next?
"Shit, I needed to talk to the Professor!" Scott cursed. Disturbing the Professor's sleep would only get points against him in the matter, but this was important.
"It'll just have to wait til mornin'. Now is there a reason you wanted to talk to me or have you just gone crazy and took up standin' in the hall as a hobby?"
"This can't wait until morning! I need you to do me a favor while I talk to the Professor. I want you to watch Remy for me."
"Remy? Gumbo's here? I thought he was with Rogue. Is she back too?" He could add Remy's return to the list of odd things happening while he was gone. He took off with Rogue over a month ago. He figured they would still be out on their sabbatical.
"No, he came back alone. They aren't together anymore. Rogue dumped him for some guy she met." Scott shrugged and shook his head. "I don't know the details, but he came back here about a month ago."
"That why you need me to watch him? He's not thinkin' of doing something stupid is he? The girl ain't worth that." Logan asked worriedly. He had seen Remy get pretty low before when the breakups were only temporary. This sounded permanent. The Cajun was pretty dramatic when it came to things like this, at least he thought so, but he learned that ignoring him just made it worse. A lot like Scott if he thought about. Both always tried to hide everything from everyone, but the second you gave them enough trust and support they clung on for dear life. He figured he pulled Scott from the edge, he could do it for Remy too, again.
"No, this isn't about Rogue. I just need you to listen for him, make sure no one tries to get in his room or he leaves it."
Logan raised an eyebrow at the leader. This was making no sense. If it wasn't Rogue then what the hell could it be? He went over the events in his head and quickly put the pieces together, or so he thought. "Does this have to do with this Reaux guy?"
"Yes." Scott replied honestly. He wasn't going to say anything else on the matter, but Logan should know who he is looking out for.
"Well, Gumbo's not the only one that has a problem with him. I don't like the guy, there's somethin' about him. He doesn't smell right. Why is he here anyway?"
"He isn't right and he is here to teach French, for now. I need to get him out of the mansion, but until I do I need you to help me keep him away from Remy. I can't tell you why, I just need you to trust me on this one."
Logan waved his hand in the air. "Fine, I'll listen in on Gumbo. I hear anything strange and I'll yell."
"Thanks Logan. Don't let anyone go in there but me. Call me on my com badge if anything happens."
"Yea, Yea, I hear ya." Logan rolled his eyes and picked up his baggage. He wrote this off as one of Scott's paranoid feelings. Most likely Remy and this Reaux guy didn't get along and Scott thinks one of them is going to slip out and pick a fight in the middle of the night. Typical Summers, he thought to himself, as he covered the stairs to his room. Just to humor himself he listened for any noise coming from Remy's room and heard only the quiet breathing of the younger man sleeping. "What's he gonna do, sleepwalk out of the room?" he grumbled as he crossed the hall. Just in case he left his door ajar. He would never hear the end of it if someone made it up the stairs without him knowing.
He began emptying his bag, separating his dirty clothes from his toiletries and weapons, putting them in there proper places. He stopped at the bathroom door when he heard a strange knocking noise. It sounded like someone at the door but he didn't sense anyone there. He sat his things down on the sink counter and made his way to the hall, not seeing anyone. He was about to excuse it as his imagination until he heard the noise again, coming from Remy's room. He crossed the hall and put his ear on the door to listen to what was going on. The sounds he heard made him grab his combadge out of his pocket and punched in the code for Scott. Something was obviously going on in there, and it didn't sound good. He tried to open the door and found it locked. The thought crossed his mind about cutting off the lock, until the combadge in his hand came to life.
"Cyke, ya better get up here. Sounds like the kid's rippin' his room apart or somethin'. The door's locked."
"I'm coming, try to get his attention, let him know it's you. I'll be there in a minute."
"Logan, whats going on?" Scott questioned after finding Logan beating on the door and yelling into the room. He was glad no one else lived on the small third floor hall or they would be out here asking what the heck was going on. It was bad enough bringing Logan into it.
"I don't know, he won't talk to me. Sounded like he was tearin' the room apart one minute and now nothin'. I can hear him breathin', but he won't talk. What the hell's up?" Logan demanded. Something was really wrong with the kid and he wanted to know what it was now! He had history with the Cajun and that made them pretty close, if something was messing him up he needed to find out. He knew by experience that Remy never acted like this, even at his lowest point, so this had to be major.
"I can't explain now. Can you cut off the lock?"
"Don't yell at me later when you have to replace the door." Logan sneered and released one of his metal claws, sliding it into the door knob, rendering it useless. He moved out of Scott's way with a sarcastic wave of his hand. "Anything else I can do for ya?"
"Yes, stay here." Scott ordered while pushing the door open slowly. The room was dark and he feared turning on the lights, but he didn't have much of a choice. With the wreck the room was in there was no way he could maneuver through without sight. "Remy, I'm going to turn on the light." he warned before flipping the switch. Looking around the room it didn't seem any worse then before, but Remy defiantly was. He was on the edge of the bed, his back to him and the door. Scott could visibly see the tremors running through Remy's body, but that wasn't what worried him. The fact that he just broke the door, flipped on the light, and entered the room without even a flinch from Remy scared him. It was like the Cajun didn't even know he was there, or refused to acknowledge it. He slowly moved through the room, pushing the items on the floor around with his foot to make a path, just in case they had to get through quickly. He stopped when his foot hit something that didn't move. Looking down he recognized it as a board that had been pulled up from the floor. With further investigation there were several floorboards that had been removed. "Remy what are you pulling up the floor for?"
"To get dis. I didn't remember where it was." Remy slurred while holding up a gun that once rested in his lap.
Scott backed away a step in utter shock. This was the last thing he pictured when coming into the room. It was obvious by Remy's tone of voice that he wasn't in a normal state of mind, and he didn't want him to do something rash. He heard Logan come up behind him after seeing the firearm and gestured him to stop. He knew Logan's way of defusing situations like this, and he was sure being jumped and held down was not something that would help Remy right now.
Logan stayed where he was but refused to leave. If Remy tried to hurt himself or Scott he was going to stop it. He looked around the room and was surprised at the mess. The Cajun was normally a clean freak and was more over protective of his possessions then anyone he knew. Being in a disagreement with the new teacher was not going to drive the kid to the point of destroying everything. Something else was going on and he was sure as hell going to find out what, once this was over. Glancing over to the nightstand he saw a familiar bottle sitting opened, it's contents spilled over the surface. He sighed and stepped closer to Scott to whisper in his ear. "Just keep him talkin', he'll pass out in a few minutes."
Scott looked at Logan questioningly, then followed his glance to the nightstand. Seeing the pills scattered on the small table he became more concerned. He had no idea what the pills were and how many he had taken, but by the way Remy was acting it was more then prescribed. He made his way closer to Remy with a little more urgency, making sure to talk to him the whole way. He didn't want to startle him and get himself shot, or worse have Remy shoot himself. "Remy, can you do me a favor, and give me that gun please?" He reached his hand out, hoping he would hand it over, but now that he could see Remy's glazed eyes he knew it wasn't going to be that easy. Whatever was in that bottle was making the Cajun very irrational.
"Non, I need it." Remy mumbled and held the gun to his chest so Scott couldn't take it from him. It was his only protection. He had no powers, no one to help him, this was all he had, he was alone.
Scott's breath hitched when Remy moved the gun to his chest. He would never forgive himself for leaving if the Cajun hurt himself. He stood still for a moment trying to decide what to do, this situation was out of hand, one wrong move could set Remy off, and that could have disastrous repercussions. The thought crossed his mind to let Logan force it away, but he knew that was too risky. He had only one idea, he wasn't sure it would work in Remy's condition, but he had to take the chance.
He walked over in front of the younger man, kneeling down so he could be eye to eye with him. Resting one hand on the edge of the bed, and one on Remy's leg, he broadcast all his concern and worry hoping it would reach through his drug hazed mind. He knew he had succeeded when they made eye contact. "Remy, please give me the gun. I don't want you to hurt someone, because I know you don't want to. I'm here now, so you don't need it, I'll protect you. Please, before you hurt yourself." Scott held out his hand again.
Remy looked at the gun and then Scott. He wanted to believe the older man, but he couldn't, he would leave again, and then he would have nothing. Even if he wasn't lying and he stayed, that wouldn't be fair. This was his problem. Problems. He was causing problems again. He was always the problem. He closed his eyes when his mind began to feel heavy and his thoughts became erratic. It was happening again, too many emotions and thoughts ran through his head, some his, some alien. It made his head swim and turn. He tried to stop it, but it just made the emotions get stronger, louder. He grasped the sides of his head when he was assaulted by a sharp pain. He recognized the pain, his mind was overloading. Too much to take in. He thought for a moment he might just give into the madness, just sing into oblivion, it would be so much easier, but something stopped him.
Suddenly, something overtook his mind. An emotion so strong it took precedence over all the others, fighting them back. It was almost a blessing if it wasn't so strange. He recognized the overwhelming emotion of fear, worry, concern, but it was all wound together in a longing and need he had never felt or really understood. He startled when his hazy mind recognized it as Scott.
"Remy! No! Please, you are scaring me, give me the gun!" Scott felt his heart sink when Remy placed the firearm to his head. Logan, in his fear, had rushed over as well, but he stopped him before he grabbed the younger man. Something had caught Remy's attention and he had moved his arms down to his lap, along with the gun. He knelt back down in front of Remy, this time putting his hand around the one holding the gun. He couldn't let that happen again. "Remy, you have to give me this. You're not thinking straight and I don't want you to hurt yourself. Please, this has to end now."
Remy slowly lifted his hand from the gun, letting Scott take it from him. Something in him couldn't deny the older man. "I'm sorry. I'm causin' problems." He covered his face when he realized what he had done. He was such an idiot. He couldn't hold back his emotions anymore, they were too much.
Scott pulled Remy to him, letting him cry into his chest. The kid was a wreck, and he knew that before he left him, so he shouldn't have gone. This was his fault. "Remy, you are not the problem here. Reaux is the problem. I promised you before that he wouldn't hurt you, and I mean it. I won't leave again." He rubbed Remy's back and let him cry, until he felt him go limp in his arms.
"I was wonderin' when that was gonna happen." Logan said while offering to take the gun.
Remy's dead weight was akward in Scott's arms, but he somehow managed to give the gun to Logan and move Remy up into the bed, gently laying his head on the pillow. He pulled up the plush blankets and covered him, after swinging his long legs up onto the mattress. "Should I take him down to Hank? He's not going to overdose on that is he?" Scott pointed at the small white pills scatter on the nightstand.
Logan snorted and picked up the bottle, showing the label to Scott. "I think he'll survive."
Scott snatched the bottle away and stared at it in disbelief. "You have got to be kidding me! Are these really ibuprofen?"
"Yep, if he takes one it mellows him out and puts him to sleep, no problems. He takes more then one and you get what we had here tonight. He's high as a kite and he don't think straight. How he reacts pretty much depends on his mood before he takes them." Logan shrugged. "Heck, I don't know, ask Hank, he's the doctor."
Scott shook his head and handed the bottle back to Logan. "Take these and that gun and hide it somewhere. I don't want him having either of them. He has scared me enough to last me at least a year. I don't know what I would have done if he would have actually tried to kill himself."
"I think you handled it pretty well. I have to say this isn't typical Gambit though, I've never seen him pull a stunt like this before. He probably won't wake up in the night, but I don't think he should be left alone. He has more guns in this room then Bishop has in his. He's just better at hiding them. You want me to stay here?"
Scott rubbed his forehead with his trembling hand. There was no way he was leaving Remy's side again. "No, I'll stay. I told him I would, and I know what's going on. I may need help keeping him occupied tomorrow though. I still need to talk to the Professor and take care of some last minute arrangements to get some of the students off on vacation. I think a trip to Hank's lab would be a good idea."
"I'll get him down there and back. I'm sure Blue can come up with somethin' to keep Remy in the lab all day. Kid won't be happy about it, but at least this new teacher can't get down there. By the way, you wanna tell me what we're dealin' with here? I know there is a little more then a simple disagreement between him and this Reaux guy. Gumbo's scared of him, why?"
Scott sighed. "I can't tell you. You're right, he's scared, but it's not my place to say. You will have to ask him yourself."
Logan nodded. He understood how trust worked, especially with Remy. He would ask the Cajun in the morning and get his answers. Until then he would watch this Reaux guy, he was obviously bad news. "Alright, I'll be here in the mornin' to drag Remy downstairs, ya need anything before I go?"
"No, I have a set of goggles in my pocket. I'll just grab some of Remy sweats to sleep in...if I can find them."
Logan laughed as he looked around the messy room. "Good luck. I think you're better off sleepin' in the nude. You'll never find anything in here." He laughed harder seeing Scott blush at the thought. "There's one for the history books. Cyke is embarrassed about sleeping naked with Gumbo. That's somethin' I'll have to pass on to Ice Cube."
"Don't you dare! Drake will have that turned around and spread around the mansion in an hour!" Scott demanded.
"Oh, I promise I won't." Logan said sarcastically as he closed the door to the room.
Scott rolled over, yawning widely. As he slowly sat up it took him a moment to remember where he was. Seeing the grand four posters of the mahogany bed he realized who's bedroom he was sleeping in. He scratched his head tiredly and thought nothing of his surroundings. He had slept in here before while he and Jean were fighting, at the time Remy was away. Remy! His mind finally realized there was suppose to be another person in bed with him. He flipped the covers off the bed, hoping to find that the Cajun had somehow hid under them. He startled to find the bed empty. "Remy!" he called out into the empty room. He was about to panic until he heard the quiet reply from the bathroom.
"I'm in here Scotty."
Scott looked into the open bathroom door and found it was dark inside. He was about to flip on the lights until two burning orbs glowing from the floor caught his eye. "What are you doing on the bathroom floor?"
"I woke up a little while 'go and everythin' hit me, I guess. I thought I was goin' to throw up, so I came in here. I didn't want to wake y' up comin' back in."
"You want me to help you back to the bed?"
"Non, I can make it, merci." Remy pulled himself up the wall slowly. The movement made his head hurt, and that made his stomach lurch again. He sunk back down to the floor with a moan. "Maybe I should stay here, my heads hurtin' and that's just makin' my stomach do flips again."
Scott sighed. This headache was probably from the stunt he pulled with the drugs the night before, but he couldn't make himself be angry. He bent down and put his arms under Remy's and pulled him up from the floor. "Come on, lets go back to bed. If there is anything I know how to get rid of it's headaches."
Remy grumbled as he was pulled up from the floor, the light from the bedroom just made his head throb harder. He was hoping that Scott would just let him stay in there. Then at least he wouldn't have to face what he had done the night before, or the person that caused it. He was surprised that Scott hadn't yelled at him for the little episode. He didn't remember it all, but what he did wasn't good.
"Lay down and close your eyes." Scott demanded as he helped Remy into the bed again. He slid in behind the younger man and pulled his head into his lap. He began rubbing the Cajun's temples in small circles, making his way across his head and down to his neck, slowly starting a pattern. He could see the tension in Remy's face fade and continued, happy to be of some help. At least his talents of headache relief weren't being wasted on just himself. His glance shifted from Remy's chiseled face to his long outstretched body. It worried him to see him that thin. Many times he had seen the Cajun in the Danger Room and admired his wiry build, but now it worried him. The young man was way too skinny, his ribs protruding his skin. Hank was right, he is underweight.
Remy felt the odd feelings coming from Scott and had a hard time figuring out just what was going on in that head of his. First an odd kind of want seeped into his mind, that made him wonder just what the leader was thinking about, but the feeling quickly changed to worry and it seemed to grow into a deep concern. He finally opened his eyes and looked up into Scott's red glasses when the feelings refused to go away. "What are y' worried 'bout?"
"You." Scott answered honestly. He had forgotten about the feelings being heard by Remy, but at least now he had a reason to voice his concerns. "When is the last time you ate a good meal? That doesn't include whiskey or ibuprofen."
Remy blushed in embarrassment. "I'm not sure. I ate a few times in the last week I know." He really hadn't eaten much, but he was never all that hungry. Of course, with all the drinking he had been doing, he really didn't have the time to think about food. He felt weak going to such things for comfort, but he never really had a choice, he was alone. Now that Scott was here he didn't have the urge to take any chemicals into his body just to numb the feelings. The older man's presence was enough to keep his mind in check. He wasn't sure how he was doing it, but he hoped Scott would keep it up. It helped him forget what lay right outside that door. His life had come back to haunt him, again and he wasn't sure he was strong enough to face it alone. He found himself once again wishing Rogue had let him fade away into that warm light, before all of this came to remind him that he didn't deserve that spot in heaven. It would have been so much better for everyone if he would have just left the world then.
Scott's was not happy hearing that Remy hadn't been eating, but that is not what concerned him the most. There were feelings that slowly crept over the weak connection, and they were dark and haunting. After what had happened the night before those feelings from Remy down right scared him. He entertained the thoughts of putting off everything he had to do that day just to stay with the Cajun, but he knew he couldn't do that. He needed to get this new teacher out and not talking to the Professor about his new findings wasn't going to get that done. There was also several students he wanted out of the school as soon as possible, the fewer children there were in the mansion, the less chance of an incident. He had to trust Logan to watch him, for awhile. As soon as he was done with his chores he would be right back to Remy's side and they would have to talk about all of this. "Listen, I have to talk to the Professor about what you told me this morning, and I also have some last minute arrangements on getting some of the kids off on vacation. Logan is going to take you down to Hank and let him look you over."
"You're leavin'?" Remy asked in a moment of weakness. He knew he must have sounded like a baby, wanting Scott close all the time, but he couldn't help it. His feelings were comforting.
Scott felt guilty when the strong alien emotion of abandonment flowing through his mind momentarily. "Just for a little while. I don't want to leave you really, I would rather stay here and talk to you about all of this, but I think the sooner we get Maurice out of here the better. That won't happen until I talk to the Professor about what you told me and about Logan's first impression."
"Logan don't like him?" That gave Remy a little more hope. Everyone trusted Logan's instincts, even the Professor. If the Canadian didn't like him then there was a chance to get Maurice out.
"Logan says that 'he doesn't smell right'. I will have to take his word on that one, but I know what that means. There is something wrong with him. Logan's also concerned about you. He almost ended up being the one in this bed last night."
"He knows what happened?" Remy asked shyly. He wasn't sure exactly how Logan would react to his actions. He didn't want to lose Logan as a friend.
"No, I didn't tell him the details. He knows that you don't like Maurice, he got that much from the stunt you pulled last night, but I didn't tell him exactly what was happening. I told him he would have to get the story from you, so he may want to talk about it. I suggest you tell him, Logan cares about you, you've always been a good friend to him." Scott felt a little worry and shame creep over the link. He was surprised how quickly he was learning to translate Remy's emotions. He shook his head lightly. "He won't blame you, because there is nothing to blame you for."
Remy nodded weakly. That felt good to hear. He hoped Scott was right because he would have to tell Logan. Once the Canadian wanted information there was no way to deny him. He had tried before and it only ended up in a fight. It was easier just to out right tell him, then end up pinned down until he spilled the beans. He knew that was just Logan's rough way of showing concern, but he still preferred to avoid the fight all together. "I will tell him if he asks. Mais, I don't need to go to Henri. There's nothin' he can do about any of this. I'd rather not sit in a lab all day."
"I think you should go, he needs to look you over and run some tests. I don't think he realizes just how strong your empathy is right now and he needs to know, so he can help you keep it under control. What you did last night and the lack of food worries me too, maybe you should consider getting something from him for the depression."
Remy shot up out of Scott's lap and turned to face the older man. "Y' think I'm a nutcase?"
"No, Remy, I think you are depressed! After everything that has happened the last month I would be too! The empathy is only multiplying that depression ten fold. I just thought it might help."
He wanted to tell Scott that everything was alright when he was around, that maybe he wouldn't need drugs if he would just stay with him, but he couldn't. That wasn't fair. This was his problem. Maybe if he took the drugs he would be alright and Scott could leave, that's probably what he wanted. "I will see Henri." he whispered.
"Good, I want you to go with Logan and eat a good breakfast first, then go to the lab. I will meet you back here later and we can talk."
Remy spirit lifted a little to hear the he would be back that night. "You'll stay here tonight?"
Scott smiled. "Yes, if want me, I'm here. Now go on and get in the shower, and I'll get Logan."
"Hey kid." Logan greeted from the edge of the bed, when he heard the bathroom door click open. He wanted to give Remy warning that he was there before he walked out in his birthday suit.
"'ello Logan." Remy said while wandering from the bathroom in a towel. He had known Logan was there before he even opened the door. He had felt his emotions creep into his mind. He felt the worry and concern and a little bit of curiosity on the surface. It wasn't overpowering, it just tickled the edge of his mind. It was odd feeling all of this from across the room, he wasn't even touching him. Maybe Scott was right, his empathy seemed to be picking up pretty fast, and that worried him.
"Something wrong, kid?"
"Just some things I'm tryin' to get used to. Nothin' to worry 'bout." Remy made his way to the closet, using the door as cover when he dropped the towel to the floor. He was buckling the belt on his jeans when a hand fell onto his naked shoulder. Suddenly the feelings tickling his mind became a flood. Not only Logan's concern and worry, but primal emotions of dark rage and lust. He didn't hear the scream that fled his lips until it was too late to stop it. Just as fast as they came, the emotions retreated as Logan pulled away in fear.
"Remy? What's going on?" He reached out again to the young man that had fallen to his knees, but was pushed away.
"Non! Don't touch me!" Remy shook his head after his mind cleared ans finally opened his eyes, looking at his shooked friend. He didn't need to be an empath to see Logan was worried, it was etched across his face.
"Kid? What is wrong with you? It's Logan! I'm not gonna hurt ya!" Logan was confused on what to do. He wanted to help Remy, but he kept pushing him away. The only time he had ever done that was after a nightmare, but the kid was wide awake!
""I'm sorry, y' just startled me. I'm just really fucked up right now. I didn't mean...I think Scotty's right, I need to see Henri."
"It's alright kid. Why don't we go get you something to eat, you sure look like you could use a good meal, or three. You can explain all of this to me, and then we can go down to the lab." He reached out a hand to the younger man and was happy to see a shaky hand drop into his.
"How do you live with that?" Remy whispered, feeling Logan's primal side again. It wasn't as strong now that he was prepared, but it was still frightening. It felt like feeling two totally different people at one time, and no matter how comforting one felt the other's anger always overpowered it.
Logan forehead furrowed when Remy pulled away from him again. Even though the kid looked next to starving, maybe it would be best to take him straight to the lab, something was up.
"I'm bein, Logan, just needed a minute to catch up with things." Remy grabbed a shirt and threw it on as they walked to the door, but he stopped before crossing the threshold, realizing he was about to leave the sanctuary of his own room. He was out there, the monster of his nightmares. What if he ran into him in the hall? What if he was in the kitchen? He couldn't go out there!
Logan stumbled back a step when the Cajun stopped at the door and refused to move forward. Remy had gone pale and he could see the fright on his face, and smelled it. "What's wrong?"
"I don't want to go out there."
Logan quickly put things together. It was the new teacher that he didn't want to meet up with. Normally he would push him out the door and make him face the teacher and get the whole fear business over with, but there was something about this situation that made that seem like a bad idea. "Make ya a deal. You go up on the roof and wait for me there and I will go get breakfast. In return you tell me what's goin' on in that head of yours. Deal?"
Remy nodded reluctantly. The idea of going on the roof was much better then walking out into that hall, but he feared telling Logan about Maurice and the empathy. Logan would probably think he was trash for going back to him time and time again. The empathy was just another point against him, he knew his friend hated people that could get in his head. He was pretty sure he would have told him sooner or later anyway, so he might as well get it over with. He turned and headed towards the window to climb to the roof.
"Go over to 'Ro's side of the roof. You may be able to climb on those little ledges, but I ain't takin' the chance. I will come through the greenhouse." Logan stood at the doorway and watched Remy climb silently out the window and cross the ledge. He waited until he heard footfalls on the roof before leaving to fetch breakfast.
Scott fought the urge, or more the habit, to kiss his wife goodbye as she prepared to leave with the children. He had finally gotten the parent's permission for the last few children to join Jean on the trip to the beach, so they were going out shopping to get the last supplies and things they would need for their departure the next morning. With the addition of the last few, the majority of the kids would be gone from the mansion, save two. He wished those two would be leaving as well, but both would not be going home for several more days, only spending the weekend with their parents. He gave Emma the job of watching over them until their departure, encouraging her to take them off campus as much as possible. He gave the excuse it was to give them a break from the school, but really it was to keep them away from the new teacher.
Just the thought of Maurice Reaux made him shake with anger. He was glad he hadn't run into him this morning. All he wanted to do was rip him apart for what he had done to Remy. He turned and glanced up the stairwell, wishing he could run back up those stairs and lock Remy in his room, so he could never get hurt again. Just the thought of the Cajun being attacked by Maurice, or anyone else for that matter, was gut wrenching. It was different before, he had powers, ones he could control, and use to defend himself. He knew Remy was an experienced fighter, and should be able to get himself out of a situation, but that wasn't enough to satisfy him. He needed to know that he was safe at all times, and right now that is not how he felt.
"Scott?" Jean repeated a little louder. She had finished loading the children into the van and was ready to leave, but she wanted to make sure Scott knew that, so he wouldn't stand in the doorway like an idiot. He was obviously in another world. She had no idea why he wanted to see the children off so badly anyway. Her curiosity made her wish she still had the link between them, so she could find out what was so important. Something was bothering him, she had spent enough years to know to see that without reading his mind.
"What? Oh, sorry. Ready to go?"
"That is what I am trying to tell you. We should be back before dinner time, I hope. If not I will see you in the morning."
"Morning?" Scott mentally cursed forgetting the meeting.
"Yes, Scott, the final meeting with our lawyer is in the morning. If you think that forgetting to show up is going to stop it, then you are wrong!"
"I wouldn't miss it for the world! I have just had other things on my mind. Some things that are more important then you!"
Jean's eyes widened when an image of Remy flashed her mind. She was pretty sure Scott didn't mean to broadcast the thought, so she didn't mention it, for now. "Good, I will see you in the morning then."
"Fine." Scott said, making sure he got the last word. He hated how things could just explode like that with Jean, at least these days. He may not love her like he had before, but he would have at least liked to keep her as a friend. A sigh of relief escaped his lips as the van pulled out from the driveway. He meant what he said, there were more important things then her this morning. Now that the kids were gone he needed to talk to the Professor and get back to Remy.
"I ain't that hungry Logan!" Remy cried out after taking the tray from Logan, allowing him to climb up the small ladder to the roof.
"You're gonna eat your half!" Logan pointed at the warm shingled roof with a silent command for the boy to sit, smiling when the boy complied. He sat the tray in between both of them and picked up a fork, handing it to Remy. "Eat what ya want, I grabbed a little bit of everything."
"Merci." Remy said while poking at the pancakes sitting in front of him.
"Eat them, don't play with 'em!"
Remy took a small bite and chewed slowly, he really wasn't all that hungry, but he knew Logan wouldn't let him off with eating nothing.
Logan kept track of exactly what Remy had eaten and made sure to leave him with a good portion of the breakfast. He gave Remy some time to eat enough to satisfy him before asking for his end of the bargain. He knew once he got the kid talking he wouldn't keep eating. "So, what's this thing you are tryin' to deal with?"
Remy sighed and sat his fork down on the tray, pushing it away. At least Logan asked the easy question first. Maybe he wouldn't have to tell him about Maurice. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath before trying to explain something he really didn't understand himself. "Y' know how my powers stopped workin' after the attack?"
"Yea." Logan replied while pulling out a cigar from his shirt pocket.
"Well, they're comin' back 'gain."
"That's good news, kid." Logan looked up from lighting his cigar with a smile, but saw that obviously it wasn't something Remy was happy about, apparent by the deep frown on his face. "It's good news isn't it?"
"Non. I mean oui, it would be great news, if it were the powers you be thinkin' of, but it's not. Henri says they might come back later, but first I gotta deal with what I got."
"Empathy." Remy whispered. He peaked from behind his long bangs at Logan for a reaction. He could feel the tickle of Logan's emotions on the edge of his mind get stronger, but he was trying his best to ignore it. He was the afraid they would flood him like last time if he reached out. "I can't control it, and it's getting stronger, I don't know how to stop it."
Shit! He wasn't expecting that one, but it explained a few things. Why he freaked out in the bedroom, why he was being so emotional, that stunt he pulled the night before, empathy would defiantly drive someone into that. He had met a few empaths in his time, and none of them were too happy with the gift, but made the best of it. Remy looked like he was about to be added to that list. He also knew if the kid didn't learn to use it he was going to be in a world of hurt, and it looked like no one had really gone out of their way in trying to help him with that either. "Have you tried practising with it? Trying to use it?"
Remy's eyes widened. "Non, why would I want to do that? Hurts enough feelin' what I do already. I just want it to go away."
"That ain't gonna happen kid, so you might as well learn to use it, control it. I know you have shields from hell when it comes to telepaths, I'm sure they could be used in this somehow. I think if you worked with them they could come in handy."
"Come in handy? I can't stand to feel other people's emotions, it hurts! It's like being forced into someone's mind every time I come anywhere near someone, and it's not even that strong yet! Soon I won't be able to be near anyone! How could that possibly come in handy?"
Logan reached out to rub Remy's back when he started to sob. He tried to keep his emotions positive, but the Cajun still flinched from him. "Now, why did you flinch. I'm not mad at ya."
"I can feel it." Remy whispered. "It hurts."
"The feral side?" Logan had heard Jean and Chuck say something about it always being on the edge of his mind, as if he was actually made of of two separate entities. Logan felt it too, every moment of everyday. That uncontrollable rage that was always threatening to break loose if he didn't keep it caged. He hated how it hurt the kid, but maybe it would be a useful tool to help Remy learn some control. "Are you up to playin' with it?"
Remy looked at Logan, fear evident on his face. What could he possible gain from playing with such a thing? "What do you mean?"
"Come here." Logan pushed the tray from between them and scooted closer to the younger man. "I'll help you fight this thing, if you are willin' to try. It's not like this empathy is goin' anywhere, so you might as well try somethin' to stop the hurtin'."
"I don't understand, but I guess I'll try."
"Good that's the first step. First off, have you ever tried pushin' the feelings back at someone?"
Remy shook his head violently. "Non! I can't do that. I can only feel people's emotions, not manipulate them!"
"You sure? Have you ever tried?"
Remy sat for a moment and thought about it. He had never tried changing someone's feelings. He just read them and blocked them out when he had the strength to do so. The thought of ever going into someone's head purposely scared him, so he had never tried. "Non, I don't know what to do."
"Ok, lets try somethin'. I want you to take my hand." Logan reached out and waited until Remy reached out with his shaky hand and took his. "You ok?" Logan waited for Remy to nod before letting his shields down a bit. He heard the quick intake of breath, and held Remy's hand tight, not letting him break the link. "Now, I feel you in my head, so you have to be able to work this both ways."
"Logan...this hurts." Remy whimpered.
"Then make it not hurt. Try to stop the emotions that are hurtin' you."
"I don't know how!" Remy tried pulling away again, only to have Logan's grip tighten. He had no idea what Logan wanted him to do, but the beast inside him was tearing away at his mind. "Logan, please."
Logan showed Remy a little mercy and lifted his shields, not letting as much hit the kid at once, but he never let go of his hand. He knew the Cajun could do this if he would just try, but he was scared. He had to find away to get Remy to understand that if he pushed emotions back over the link he could change the feelings of the other person, making them more bareable. He waited for Remy to calm down from the last assault before taking a different approach. Maybe if he fed off Remy's true nature to please, he could get him to try. It was a sneaky way of doing things, but if it got the boy to try it was worth it. "I know you feel the animal inside me, and I know it hurts. It hurts me too, I have to live with it everyday. I just thought maybe if you could calm it down a little it would help us both out a little. You learn something new, and I get a few minutes of peace. I'm sorry if I hurt ya." Logan slowly released Remy's hand only to have the Cajun tighten the grip again.
"I'll try. I'm not sure if I can do it though." Remy couldn't stand to think of Logan's torment. He was whining about feeling the primitive rage for a few moments, he couldn't imagine feeling it all the time. He had to try for Logan's sake, even if it hurt him.
"Thanks kid." Logan smiled. He was glad Remy couldn't read thoughts, or he would have caught the loud 'gotcha!' that Logan mentally yelled. Yes, he hated the feelings of the rage in his mind all the time, but he was sure there was nothing Remy could do about it, but if it got him to push his boundaries a bit that would be a step in the right direction. It would show him he could send feelings back. He slowly let down his shields again, allowing Remy access to his emotions. He kept his own feelings as calm as possible, so all Remy had to worry about was the beast.
Remy closed his eyes and bit his bottom lip as the feelings hit him again. He concentrated on the animal, it was pure, unbridled rage, no rhyme or reason, just anger thrown out in every direction. He wasn't sure if anything could calm such a beast, but he had to try. He imagined soothing the beast with all the love and respect he had for his friend, sending it over the weak link. He became overjoyed when he felt a slight retreat in the emotions. "Logan?"
"Keep doin' what your doin', it's workin'." Logan startled when alien emotions hit his mind. It was strange at first, but the red haze that had become a constant in his mind, began to lift. Letting him see clearly for the first time. The kid was doing something, and it seemed to working beyond Logan's expectations. Maybe he could calm the beast, that was almost too much to hope.
Remy collected all the positive feelings he had collected over his short life. The unconditional love of his adopted father, the feelings of safety he had felt from his Tante, the affection he had held for his wife, and the new found feelings he had saved from Scott. He wasn't sure how to classify the latest emotions, but he knew they were positive and powerful. They had pulled him from the edge, he hoped they would have the same calming effects on the savage in Logan. He pushed all of his collected emotions over the weak link and sighed in relief when the dark emotions retreated from his mind.
"Holy fuck!" Logan yelled off the rooftop. He had felt the nudge against the animal, and that was enough to make him happy for days, but the last flood of emotions took him completely by surprise. He was jolted by the wave, but in it's wake was the most calming feeling he had ever felt in his life. Even in his deepest meditations he had never achieved such peace. It was euphoric, orgasmic, it felt like the beast inside him had finally laid down to rest after years of tormenting his mind.
Remy startled at the loud curse and quickly opened his eyes, afraid that he had hurt Logan. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to hurt y'! I should have never tried doing that, I had no idea what I was doin'...."
"No, kid, you didn't do anything wrong! Hell, I haven't felt this good in years! It's like it's completely gone!"
"Really? I did good, non?" Remy beamed with accomplishment. The Canadian was right, he didn't feel the beast at all anymore. It was just Logan, a very happy Logan at that.
Logan pulled Remy into a tight hug, a tear of relief ran down his face. "Kid, you did more then good! Thank you."
"I'm glad I could help. Merci for pushin' me. I would have never tried that if y' didn't."
Logan pulled away from Remy with a smile. "You did real good kid, I knew you had it in ya. If this is what it feels like to be manipulated by you, feel free to use me as a guinea pig any time!"
Remy laughed. "Y' mean that Logan? Will y' help me with this?"
"Sure thing kid. All you have to do is ask." Logan laid back on the warm roof, watching the clouds roll by. For the first time in years he felt whole and he had Remy to thank for that. He looked over and saw a big smile plastered on Remy's face and was glad to see it there. What the Cajun had done the night before had worried him like nothing else. He had never seen Remy get that worked up over something before. He rolled over on his side, propped up on his elbow, almost forgetting that there was another subject he meant to bring up with Remy. "Hey kid, what's up with you and this new teacher?" Logan cringed at the emotions that suddenly hit his mind. The weak link was still there and the shame and pain seeped over it like tar. He watched as the smile quickly faded and he fell back into the hole he was in the night before. "Kid?"
"I was hopin' y' wouldn't ask."
"I'm askin' now, so tell me. I won't get mad, I don't think you could tell me anythin' right now that would make me angry with ya." Logan sat up and wrapped his arm around Remy's shoulder for support, letting the young man lean into him. He listened to him tell his story through sobs and pleas of forgiveness. With every sentence the rage inside him reawakened, wanting revenge for the small boy that was now a broken man in his arms.