Past lives:     






      Gambit found the floor cold beneath his bare feet, and he was tired but wanted to get this over with.

       Justice looked at Gambit’s feet, “How far is your room?”

       “Why yo’ gon’ carry me?” Gambit laughed.

      Justice shrugged, called his bluff and made the moves to pick him up. Gambit jumped back from the blonde with a wry smile, and held both hands up in mock stop signs.
       “Dat’s ok, S’cool,” he laughed. “Wha’s dis about?”

       “Just thought you might want some time away from Hayley,” Justice laughed. Then he looked at Gambit when he stopped in front of a door, “She can mess with a guy’s head.”

       Gambit took a breath, “Dat’s not'in ta worry 'bout,” he mumbled and threw the door open, “Dat smell stuff don’ work on me.” He stepped in the room and flicked the light on.

      “She was doing that, huh?” Justice followed him in the room.

      Gambit nodded, “She always t’ink men wan’ one t’ing, non?”

      Justice narrowed his look at Gambit as Remy retrieved socks and a shirt. “Yeah, she doesn’t have the best track record.”

        Gambit met his eyes with a curious gaze, and silently wondered how many men she had been with, but his record was quite list too.

       “Yo’ gon’ ta tell me ta leave ‘er alone, non?” Gambit pulled on his socks and shirt on, and then grabbed some pants.

       “I don’t interfere,” Justice went a little red when Remy turned around and stared at him with a grin. “I just wanted to know she was in good hands.”

      Gambit disappeared into the bathroom and came back out in different pants. “Yo’ interfere alright or ah’d be wit’ Hayley now.” He laughed from the other room. “S’cool, yo’ de older brother.”

      Justice laughed. He had forgotten Gambit had a younger sister, and could only imagine the fights he must have gotten in for Rayne's sake. Justice felt dumb for bothering them now.

     “Sorry for interrupting,” Justice apologized. “She’s my sister.”

     “Yo’ gon’ tell me ta leave ‘er 'lone’?”


           Gambit nodded and lit a cigarette. Justice watched him with a realization.
    ‘They are too much alike,’ he sighed and wondered if the affair would amount to anything.

     “Good,” Gambit turned off the lights and he and Justice stepped out of the room.

     Gambit started back the way they came and Justice cleared his throat, “The rec room’s that way.”

     Gambit laughed, “Yo’ did'n wan’ ta play pool.”  He took a puff of the cigarette then continued in the direction of Hayley’s room.

    Justice chuckled, watching him saunter off knowing he was on his way back to Hayley’s room.

    Scott knocked on Beast's door, and finally heard his loud steps coming to the door. The door opened to find a very tired Hank.

      “Scott?” Beast said surprised.
      “Sorry Hank, I know it’s late.” Scott started. “I need to talk to you.”

      Beast moved aside to let Scott into the room and watched him with tired eyes. “What is your dilemma?”

        Scott crossed his arms, "I need to ask you about Hayley."

      “Indeed?” Beast mumbled still a little asleep, but Scott’s upset expression began to wake him more.

      “I am I the father?” he asked quickly.

      “I am under patient/doctor confidentiality and cannot disclose that.” Beast crossed his arms. He had thought better of Scott than to ask him to breach a confidence like that.

      “Hank.” Scott sighed. “I need to know, it’s destroying my relationship with Jean.”

      “Oh dear,” Beast muttered.

      “I know I am NOT the only possibility,” Scott said quickly.

      Beast raised an eyebrow at him. “No, you are not Scott.”

      “Can you at least tell me how strong the chance is?” Scott said quietly.

      Beast stared as Scott, and he knew it must have taken him a long time to ask this of him. “Hayley hasn’t been very forthcoming?”

      “No,” he scoffed. “But she said she told you everything,”

      “Yes, she did,” Beast thought the problem over in his mind. “I cannot tell you who the other’s are Scott but I can tell you this,” Beast sat on the edge of his bed, “You ARE the strongest possibility.”

      By the look of Scott’s face, Hank knew he hadn’t given his friend much hope. Scott looked at the floor. “Do you think you might be able to suggest a D.N.A test?”

      Beast remembered whom the other possibilities were and shook his head. “Once I do her pre-natal care, I will then decide if that is needed.” Beast sighed looking at him. “I know this is hard on you Scott, but Hayley is pregnant, and that is a delicate matter.”

     “What are you saying?”

     “She has asked nothing of you.” Beast stood moving to the door. “Difficult as it may be, you might be better off putting it in the back of your mind until you do know.”
     Scott walked out the door dejected, “Thanks, Hank.”



       Hayley lay in her bed sleeping soundly but her mind was hard at work.  Inside of her mind her dreams were both beautiful and disturbing. She could see and hear images of somebody who haunted her now.

      “Hayley,” a faceless voice called her, and she turned quickly and saw something dissipating into the darkness that surrounded her.

      Hayley narrowed her eyes suspiciously, “Who’s there?” she called, only to hear her question echoed.  She felt a hand on her shoulder and turned again to find yet another void. She gasped, and was at a loss for words when she saw the scene that materialized around her. She was looking at a bonsai tree, with Japanese styled homes in the distance. Hayley turned to take in more of the view, and came face to face with a little man that was all too familiar to her. Her father’s eyes twinkled at her and she fancied he looked proud of her.

      “If it isn’t the one with the temper,” he smiled. He didn’t show any fear and kept a happy smile. “Don’t fear me child. I am not the monster who hurt you. Not anymore.”

      Hayley narrowed her eyes and was sure her disbelief was evident, “What do you want,” She had the strangest feeling though that he wasn't going to hurt her.

      “I want to keep you from making a mistake, child,” He smiled and sat upon a rock.

      Hayley scoffed, because she never made mistakes, “and what would that be?”

      “This man you are asleep with,” he sighed.

      Then she sighed relieved, “this is just a dream.”

     “Is it?”

     “I don’t want to talk to you anymore. I want to wake up.”

     “Hayley, if you don’t learn from your past, you are doomed to repeat it.”

     Hayley was shocked he would say something that rang true to her, “And this, has something to do with Gambit?”

     “The mutant with eyes like fire. Yes it does,” He smiled at his daughter, “He could love you and make you complete, and you he. The problem is, you tend to go through men.”

      “What?” She was becoming angry, “Who are you to say this to me?”

      “He wants you, heart and soul, not just your body,” Oliver took her hands and met her eyes like he did when she was young and Hayley almost cried.

       Hayley took to the defensive though and pulled away, “Who are you to tell me how to live.” Hayley summoned her flame to scare him, but it didn’t work, “Wha?”

      “Your mutations don’t work here, honey,” He smiled, “You need to listen to me. I don’t have long.”

      “Right, because you have been so helpful and caring in the past.” She laughed.

       He sighed, “I tried.”

       Her father looked close to tears now, “Hayley please, heed my words this time.” He backed away slowly, “Remy could be the best thing for you but you need to give him a chance to love you.”

       Hayley watched as he became a cloud of bright swirling smoke and then disappeared. Then she put her hands in her lap and let her tears fall. What did he mean? Was he there to hurt her again? Had he learned redemption from Ally’s mind? Was he playing games? Or, was this all just a dream?

     She felt a hand upon her shoulder and she turned a good round-house kick at the source of the touch. Her mouth dropped when she saw her mother’s face. “I am sorry.”  She began to stammer, “I, I, I thought it was dad again.”

     She took in her mother’s features and rediscovered her. She had beautiful almond brown eyes, framed by a large round face and her black straight hair was, pinned loosely on her head. Her mother did not yet speak but bowed to Hayley.

      Hayley bowed in return then smiled, “Mom, I have missed you so much.” She reached for her but her touch went through her astral figure, “What is this? How are you here?”

     “Hayley,” she said and stared at her daughter hard. “Did you listen to what your father was telling you?”

     Hayley forgot how strict her mother was when they had done something dumb. Had she done something dumb? 'Listen?'

     Her mother’s stern expression cut through her. Hayley knew what she meant now, “Dad never made sense.” Hayley shook her head.

     Her mother sat down and patted the earth next to her for Hayley to sit down, “He wanted to help you.”

     “By telling me to be with Remy?”

     “Yes.” She nodded.

     Hayley sat down next to her mother.

    “We are both here to help you now,” Her mother sighed.

    “Dad?” Hayley didn't understand.

     Her mother smiled, “Your father is different now. My death was hard on him.”

    Hayley felt her tears fall before she had acknowledged that she had cried.

    “Time grows short,” Her mother whispered.

    “Mom, don’t leave me,” She pleaded, “I am going to be a mother and I need your help.”  Hayley grabbed for her mother’s shoulder desperately and to her surprise she had a hold of her. Hayley pulled herself into her mother’s embrace.

      “I know,” Her mom ran her gentle hands over Hayley’s hair and hoped to reassure her daughter, “I will be with you, always.”

      Hayley pulled back to look at her. She had to look at her mom because she missed her so, “I could never be the mother you were.”

      “You will be, and much more than that,” Her mother had more love in one smile than Hayley had ever known. “All things end." Her mother stated,  "You will have to help your sister.”

     Hayley watched her intently and didn’t speak, so as not to break the spell.
    Her mother touched Hayley’s chin, “This man. He saved your life,” Her mother nodded in approval, “Give him your heart not just your body.”

      “R-Remy? ”Hayley stumbled her words, “you know about him?”

      “As did your father,” Her mother stood, breaking Hayley’s tight grip.
      “Let my children take care of one another, because your greatest test has yet to come.”

      Hayley watched in horror as her mother’s frail form became transparent, “Mom?” she called, “Don’t go.” She began to cry hard now and felt like she was losing her mother all over again.

     Her mother began to rise up and Hayley realized she was intangible again. Hayley fell to the ground watching her mother leave. The calm and happy scene that was there, was now gone and the darkness surrounded both her mother and Hayley.

      “Your heart will lead you,” her mother's voice echoed.

       She disappeared into the shadows and Hayley’s face fell. “Mom!” She screamed, “Don’t leave me again! ” Hayley curled into a ball, “I need you,” She grabbed her belly tightly, “I need you, now!”


        Gambit snapped awake. He could feel Hayley curled up on his chest and she was flinching. He watched her movement and knew she was asleep.
        ‘Bad dream,’ he decided quickly and touched her shoulder lightly.
        “Hayley,” he mumbled, shaking her lightly but she didn’t wake.
        “Hayley,” he repeated, “Chere, yo’ havin’ a ba’ dream” he shook her harder.

        Hayley finally responded and jumped awake as lightening jumped and crackled around her body. The lights came on because of the electrical surge, startling both of them, and then the lights slowly dimmed and winked out.

         “Wha?” She blinked at Remy.

         “Ah don’t know chere,” He sat up a little looking at her and the lights suspiciously.

         She rubbed her eyes and looked at him a little ashamed, remembering her dream.

         He kissed her head, “S’cool. Remy's here.” He smiled and sank back against the pillows once more.

         She looked at him with new eyes and brushed her lips against his gently, “Thank you, Remy." Then she put her head on his chest again, “I know,” She said softly.

         His hand flew to his mouth. She hadn't realized that she had given him an electric shock. He sighed as he listened to her breathing become slow and rhythmic once again. He shut his eyes and wrapped an arm protectively around her.
        ‘Remy here, Chere.’
He sighed and ran a hand over her hair. It was late and he knew she had a lot of pain to face tomorrow. He would be there for her, and he was afraid that was all he could do right now.


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