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What Becomes of Us

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Mar. 13th, 2008 | 03:21 am
posted by: briyamineko84 in dry_ice

Title: What Becomes of Us (1 of ?)
Author: Bri
Rating: R
Characters/Pairing: Bobby/John, other couples include OCs
Summary: He missed them more than anything, but except for Johnny, they were still X-men. He was on the run from them, too. Post X-3, Bobby makes a decision that changes everything.
Notes: Told mainly from Bobby's POV, and for the first few chapters, the story bounces back and forth between the present and backstory. This is my first post here, and my first Bobby/John fic in general, so concrit is greatly appreciated.


People’d been talking about how it was cold enough for snow, but the light rain falling from the sky proved differently. Bobby could’ve changed that, and if he’d been at the Institute he probably would have, but he was trying to keep a low profile. He adjusted his grip on the plastic grocery bags he was carrying and was grateful he’d decided to buy ice cream instead of getting something hot from the deli section of the grocery store for dinner. It may not have been the healthiest choice, but it was cheaper, and the cold temperature wouldn’t ruin his ice cream.

It was only another block to his building and he quickened his pace, in a hurry to get there. It was dark, and this wasn’t a good neighborhood. Bobby was safer because he was male, and both looked like he worked out and like he had very little money, but there was still a chance someone might decide it was worth it. He was confident he could take just about anyone who’d try, but he’d probably lose his groceries in the process and there’d be twenty dollars down the drain. Plus, he really didn’t need to draw attention to himself.
The streetlamps were out when he approached his apartment building, but that wasn’t a surprise. They’d been out since he started living there. He shifted the bags to one hand so he could unlock the door into the building, then he kicked it shut behind him. One of the lights in the small lobby was broken, too, but the remaining bulbs lit it up enough that he could see.

The help desk that opened up into the office was empty, which was odd. Bobby’d never seen it empty. He was about to go over when someone moved into view, sitting down at the counter and smiling at him. It wasn’t Lorna or Tessa, the only two people whose names he knew around here, and even that was only because they owned the building. He still vaguely recognized her, though. He was pretty sure she lived on his floor.

“Three e, right?” she asked him.

“Um, yeah,” he replied.

“You’ve got mail,” she told him, then grinned at using that phrase. “You want it now or wait until you’ve got a free hand?”

“Nah, I’ll take it now,” he said, stepping over to the counter and trying not to freak out about who the hell knew his address and would be writing to him
.
“Kay, hang on,” she said, ducking below the counter and resurfacing with a pair of envelopes.

She smiled at him again as she passed them over, her purple eyes meeting his blue ones, and she was definitely on the same floor as him. He’d never asked if they were contacts or natural, though he’d wondered.

“Thanks,” he said, grabbing the envelopes and dropping them into one of his bags.

“No problem,” she replied, going back to the history book that was open on the counter.

He started back to the stairs, hearing a laugh coming from the rec room next door. For a moment, he felt a pain of homesickness and was tempted to join them, but he brushed it off. He’d only been there two months and he’d tried to keep to himself as much as possible; he wouldn’t know anyone in there. And besides, his ice cream was probably melting.

Two flights of stairs and he was on the third floor, the top floor. Bobby eyed the vending machines off to the side of the stairs and considered getting a soda. He had some change left in his pocket, but he decided it wasn’t worth trying to juggle the grocery bags and continued on to his apartment. He shifted the bags again so he could open his door, shutting and locking it behind him. The people in this building seemed nice enough, but he had reason to be paranoid.

He flicked the light on and crossed his apartment. It was nothing special, just an L-shaped room that had his bed, desk, and bookcase at one end and a couch, TV, and the table, microwave, hot plate, and mini-fridge that served as his kitchen area at the other. He was considering getting some kind of screen or something to separate the two areas, but until then they were mostly open to each other. He also had a bathroom and two closets, and since he didn’t even have enough clothes to fill one of the closets, he was using the spare as a pantry.

The box of Ramen he’d bought got shoved in there, along with a couple boxes of cereal and a bag of Doritos. Milk and sliced turkey went into the fridge, which he reluctantly plugged back in. He normally just cooled down anything that needed it when he wanted it, but milk and lunchmeat wouldn’t keep without the fridge. The stupid thing really cut into his electric bill, though. He consoled himself with the promise of future bowls of cereal and that fact that at least he didn’t need to pay for the heater to be on.

That just left him with ice cream and the two envelopes, which he pulled out of the bag almost nervously. And then felt stupid and paranoid, because one was his electrical bill and the other was a letter from Canton State University thanking him for paying his tuition on time. He sighed and dropped them on his couch, then grabbed his container of ice cream.

“Best dinner ever, Drake,” he muttered under his breath as he fished around in the drawer of his “kitchen” table for a spoon. He emerged triumphant and dug into the ice cream, wandering over to his desk.

He sat down and turned on his laptop, waiting patiently for the thing to boot up. It was quite a few years old, could be slow as hell, and getting the power cord that had been taped back together twice to charge its battery was a constant struggle, but it had come cheap and it worked well enough for him. When it was finally up, he logged in to Canton State’s website. Classes had started two weeks ago, and all of his professors put their assignments and just about everything else online.

A quick glance over the reading lists for his classes showed that he was caught up in all of them, and even ahead in his Intro to Accounting class. He signed in to his university email account, and had a message from someone in his psychology class. She’d sent them out to everyone, wanting to form a study session to prepare for the first test in that class next week. Bobby considered for a moment, then hit reply and said he’d be there.

After that he signed out, and hovered over Gmail for a bit. He didn’t dare sign into his account on the Institute’s server, he knew they could track him through that. But he had his personal email, and he was tempted to check it. Just to see who’d emailed him, just to hear from his friends again, even if he couldn’t reply. But he didn’t. Both because he was slightly paranoid that they’d be able to track him over that, and because he knew that if he read emails from his friends, he’d give in and email them back.

He missed them. He missed Kitty’s smile, missed joking and bickering and prodding her into laughing when she was upset and her doing the same for him. He missed Pete’s cartoons, missed his way of just sitting there and listening, missed how when he laughed, it was deep and loud and just happy. His missed the gleam in Jubilee’s eyes whenever she was up to something, missed hearing her and Kitty gossiping in the hall and then having them trail off suspiciously whenever he was near and grin at him, even when he’d heard what they were talking about and it had nothing to do with him.

He missed Rogue. Marie, whatever she was going by then. He missed the way the sun caught in the white streak in her hair, the slow way she smiled at him, the rare moments when she was laughing and looked purely happy, at ease. He missed her gloved hand in his, her head on his shoulder when they curled up on the couch to watch a movie. The way she spoke, soft Southern accent that was beautiful no matter what she said.

Bobby liked accents. He’d liked his own, once, before he learned how to talk without it. Like Pete, and Johnny, and even Kitty kind of, though he liked theirs better than his. He’d joked that they should form a club, the People Who Used to Have Accents But Learned to Talk Without Them Because People Mocked Us club. Kitty and Pete’d liked the idea, but Johnny just laughed sarcastically and told him that the initials of that name alone were too long for him to care and they didn’t form anything cool, anyway. Later, Johnny told him that he didn’t care if people mocked him, he’d just gotten tired of stupid people asking him if he was from Australia. Bobby’d known that was bull (back then he’d rarely added the shit part, even in his own thoughts), but he’d just told Johnny that he could be an honorary member, then.
Okay, this trip down memory lane had to end. Bobby closed out of the internet browser and shut down his computer. He missed them more than anything, but except for Johnny, they were still X-men. He was on the run from them, too.

~*~

His head hurt. It couldn’t have been physical pain, it’d been almost a week since Alcatraz and any injuries he had were mostly gone. Mostly. But he’d been an ice form, and despite any comments he or other people had made to the contrary, Joh - Pyro wasn’t that hard-headed. Even in his thoughts he still slipped up. That scared him, a bit. If what happened on Alcatraz wasn’t enough to convince him that Johnny didn’t exist any more and Pyro had taken his place, Bobby didn’t know what would. He’d seen the look in Pyro’s eyes. If Bobby hadn’t won, he’d be dead.

It freaked him out. And it made him wonder why he’d dragged Pyro off of the island, why he’d pulled him on the jet with the rest of the X-men as they high-tailed it back to the Institute. Except he knew why. Because Bobby couldn’t just leave Pyro there, couldn’t stand the thought of the guy who used to be his best friend dying, even if it was obvious that Pyro not only didn’t care if Bobby died, but was perfectly willing and eager to be the cause of it.

Pyro was locked in the sublevels now. Waiting in one of the rooms while they gave him medical attention and decided what they were going to do with him. Bobby didn’t know. He and Kitty and Pete and even Marie were all apparently considered adults now, although Bobby wondered how much of that had to do with what they’d done on Alcatraz and how much was because with the Professor, Dr. Grey, and Mr. Summers gone, they were really short on staff.

Whatever the case, they’d been in on every meeting that Storm or Dr. McCoy had called, talking about the Cure, politics, how to keep the school running, and who would be teaching what classes when they started up again. But no one had brought up Johnny. Pyro. Damn it.

They were in a meeting right now, though. Just Storm and Beast and Logan. None of the younger members of the team had been invited, and Bobby knew why. They must have been talking about what to do with Pyro.

Someone knocked on his door and Bobby pulled a smile on his face, sitting up and grabbing one of his math books so it looked like he was doing something other than lying on his bed staring at the ceiling.

“Come in!” he called.

Rogue opened the door and walked in, closing it behind her.
Her presence still brought a smile to his face, even with everything going on. “Hi, Rogue.”

“Marie,” she told him softly.

He nodded. “Right, Marie. Sorry. What’s up?”

She sat down next to him, tucking her hair back behind one ear. “They’re having a meeting,” she said.

“I know,” he replied. She seemed upset about something. Normally, he would have pulled her into a hug, and she would have protested a bit but let him. But things, things hadn’t been the same between them since she left. It wasn’t about the Cure. Bobby respected her right to take it, and understood why she’d wanted to. He didn’t think anything bad about her for wanting it.

It was just that she hadn’t been there. Things had been really bad, Professor Xavier had died, she had to have known that things were going to get worse. That there’d be a confrontation. And she’d left. She hadn’t been there when they were fighting on Alcatraz, she didn’t know what they’d gone through because she’d left. And he wasn’t mad at her, and he still loved her, but he didn’t…He just didn’t know what to do with that.

“They’re having a meeting without us,” she prompted.

“Yeah,” he agreed.

She frowned. “You don’t. I mean, you don’t think they don’t want me there because I took the Cure, right?” She looked down. “No, it’s stupid. Otherwise you guys would be there, too. But why would they keep us out, when we’ve heard everything they’ve been doing since Alcatraz?”

It was a perfectly natural thing to be worried about, but Bobby had to resist the urge to tell her that she was more likely to be left out of meetings because she’d abandoned the X-men when they needed her than because she’d taken the Cure. But he did resist, and he felt bad for even thinking it. She’d done what she felt she had to do, and no one could ask for more than that. He was her boyfriend, he should be telling her that everything was okay. And he could do that.

“I don’t think it’s anything we did, Marie,” he told her. “Or that they think we’re too young for whatever they’re talking about. I think they’re probably talking about Pyro.”

Another frown, this time in confusion. “So? Why would that be something we can’t be there for?”

He blinked. “Because we were friends with him? And anything we recommend is likely to be biased.”

“Were being the keyword there, Bobby,” she said. “After what he did, we sure ain’t friends with him anymore. I mean, he tried to kill you.”

For a moment, Bobby was annoyed with her. Because she’d assumed this was about her or them, rather than about Johnny. And because she didn’t seem to care what happened to him, or if he had someone to speak up for him, and because she was probably right. Pyro had tried to kill him, Kitty and Pete probably felt the same way Marie did.

“I don’t think they want to make us go through that,” Bobby said. “No one should have to sit around trying to decide what to do with someone who used to be their best friend.” Especially not when he was pretty sure what the options were going to be, and Bobby was also pretty sure he’d fight against most of them if he was in on the meeting.

“Oh,” she said, then leaned over to give him a hug. “I’m sorry, Bobby.”

He hugged her back. “I just, I don’t know what to do,” he admitted.

“We’ll get through this, Bobby,” Rogue said, stroking bare fingers through his hair. “We’ve been through bad times before, we just have to keep going. Everything’s gonna be okay.”

He held on to her, letting her comfort him, but he didn’t say anything in reply. Because he didn’t really know how it could be.


Chapter Two

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Comments {3}

bluefish_dory

(no subject)

from: bluefish_dory
date: Mar. 13th, 2008 11:21 am (UTC)
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I love it, I'm slightly confused (only slightly though, and thats to be expected)but far more intrigued...
So please keep writing, can't wait for the return of the brooding pyrokinetic (if he is stil a pyrokinetic. Please keep him a pyrokinetic!

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Profiterole

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from: _profiterole_
date: Mar. 13th, 2008 07:10 pm (UTC)
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I love that beginning. I'm looking forward to reading more of this. ^___^

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Michael

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from: lux_apollo
date: Mar. 14th, 2008 04:18 am (UTC)
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Keep it up.

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