Chapter 16

Logan was very insistent about staying in Marie’s arms. Even when they reached the medical labs and Logan was seated on one of the examination tables, Marie was right there with him. Her body was perpendicular to his, one leg propped up behind his back, the other folded in front of her and pressed against the side of his thigh. Marie had her body practically molded to his with one hand wrapped around his waist from the front and the other around his shoulders from the back. Marie rested her head on his shoulder as she watched Jean repair the damage to his hands.

“How ya holdin’ up, sugah?” Marie whispered, turning her head to press a kiss to the side of Logan’s throat.

“I don’t like it in here,” Logan told her, flinching slightly as Jean his a particularly sensitive spot.

“Ah know ya don’t,” Marie confirmed, running her hand up and down his arm in a soothing motion. “As soon as we’re done here, Ah’ll take ya outside and ya can wonder round in the forest t’ yer heart’s content.”

Logan seemed relaxed even more, lowering his head on top of Marie’s. He made no other sounds, no movements as Jean continued to patch up his mangled right hand. Marie knew that even though Logan appeared more relaxed outwardly, his little foray into the Danger Room had him very disoriented.

“Why didn’t you come to me as soon as this happened?” Jean inquired as she lightly rubbed an anti-biotic salve into his palm.

“Well, Logan’s not too fond o’ Scooter over there an’ when ya’ll came bargin’ in last night Ah didn’t think it was the best idea fer ya t’ stick around,” Marie explained, her head never leaving Logan’s shoulder. “So Ah patched him up an’ we went ta bed.”

Jean gave her an incredulous look. “You just patched him up? Rogue, what on earth happened in that room? How did this happen?”

“Like Ah told ya last night, Jeanie, Logan’s havin’ a hard time adjustin’ to them claws o’ his. We had an accident. Nothin’ more,” Marie told the older woman, refusing to go into greater detail.

“An accident?!” Jean cried, her eyes flashing between Marie and Logan. “Rogue, his hand is practically shredded. How on earth did he accomplish something like this?”

“Jeanie, let it go,” Marie insisted, lifting her head from Logan’s shoulder to glare at the doctor. “Just fix up Logan’s hand an’ we’ll be outta yer way.”

In the end, Marie and Logan didn’t end up going outside that afternoon. After Jean had properly bandaged Logan’s hands, the two of them had gone to Professor Xavier’s office where he proceeded to inform Logan of mutants, the X-Men and Logan’s role in it all.

Needless to say, Logan hadn’t reacted very well.

He had stalked about the enclosed confines, growling low in the back of his throat. When the Professor had tried to stop him, Logan’s claws slid neatly from his knuckles, the growl turning into a snarl. Logan didn’t flinch and neither did the Professor. Everyone else in the room did, though, including Marie.

“Logan, Ah need ya t’ calm down an’ put yer claws away,” Marie said softly, capturing his face in her hands and pulling it down towards her own.

The effect was instantaneous. The claws slid back into their human sheaths and Logan wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her slender body tight against his. He didn’t say anything, but Marie could feel the mass of emotions swirling from him and bombarding itself against her own psyche.

“Ah’m takin’ Logan back upstairs now, Professor,” Marie announced, slipping out of Logan’s arms and wrapping an arm around his waist. She led him out of the office and to the staircase that would lead them to her room. She had learned the hard way that Logan didn’t like elevators and didn’t much feel like a repeat performance.

Logan knew the truth now. He knew what had been done to him the past four years. About Magneto’s role in what had been done to him and the X-Men’s role as well. It was what the Professor and his students had failed to do that angered Logan the most.

“They knew for four years and they didn’t do anything about it?” Logan roared as he flopped down heavily on the bed. He cradled his head in his hands, staring at the carpet between his feet.

Marie knelt down in front of him and placed her hands on his thighs. “Ah’m furious with ‘em fer doin’ it too, but there’s nothin’ we can do ‘bout it. The only good thing ‘bout them waitin’ so long is that now ya don’t remember anythin’ they did t’ ya.”

Logan raised his head up so that he could meet her eyes. There were tears in his eyes and his voice cracked as he spoke. “But I don’t remember anything. Absolutely nothing. It’s just a big nothing.”

Marie felt her own tears pricking at the corners of her eyes as she gathered Logan up in her arms. “Ah know, sugah. If Ah could, Ah’d go back in time and talk ya outta leavin’ like ya did after savin’ mah life. Ah’d have tied ya to the bed if Ah had ta.”

“I wish you had,” Logan mumbled forlornly. “It would have been better than this.”

Marie convinced Logan to lie down after that. He was emotionally wrung out and in need of some much needed rest. Logan seemed reluctant, but relaxed slightly when she promised that she wasn’t going to leave the room. She even laid down with him at first, smoothing her fingers through his thick hair and along his arm as she waited for him to drift off to sleep.

Marie exhibited nothing but outward calm while she was fuming inside. She hoped that Logan wouldn’t pick up on it. Dealing with his own scrambled emotions would be difficult enough without adding hers into the mix. Marie was downright furious with the Professor for being so blasé about what had happened to Logan. The older man had recited the events as though reading them from a textbook rather than telling Logan of his past.

With a snarl that would have put even the Wolverine to shame, Marie stalked towards her closet in search of her workout clothes. She quickly changed into the black leotard then closed the blinds, blanketing the room in welcome darkness. Marie turned on the bedside lamp for a moment while she searched for her candles and matches. She lit two of them and set them down in the large open space on the floor then turned the lamp back off.

“Okay, Marie, time t’ calm down,” Marie whispered to herself as she sat down cross-legged in front of the candles. She needed to get her rage under control before she was unable to block out her powers any longer. Meditation was the best way to do that so Marie began her breathing exercises and began to relax her body.

Rather than the soft, melodious music that she would normally listen to while meditating, Marie instead focused on the sounds of Logan’s breathing. The deep, steady pattern of his breaths were almost as calming as the music. Slowly, without even being fully aware of it, Marie altered her breathing pattern to match Logan’s. Soon, they were breathing as one person and, had Marie’s senses been as keen as Logan’s once were, she would have realized that their hearts were beating together as well.

As always, the meditation calmed her almost instantly. Once she was sure that she would be able to keep control of her powers, Marie ended the meditation and began the second part of her workout.

A few years ago, Jean had suggested that she start practicing Tai Chi as way to tone and strengthen her body while maintaining a calm state of mind. She had begun learning only to human the other woman, but soon found it to be a part of her daily life. Until the past week, she would wake up each morning and do her routine. After missing six days, Marie prepared herself for a long workout to make up for it.

“Ah might even teach Logan how ta do it,” Marie mused, twisting her neck around to work out the kinks before beginning. “Ah’m sure he’d enjoy it. Might even help that nasty temper o’ his.”

The slow, fluid movements had become almost second nature to Marie over the years. She moved gracefully, allowing her mind to relax further and process what had happened that day. The past week for that matter. Maybe even the past month. Ever since finding Logan’s jacket in that military base up in northern Canada, Marie had been riding on pure emotions and it was finally beginning to catch up with her. She needed to be calm and relaxed if she was going to be of any help to Logan as he struggled to build a new life for himself. There was no question about her being a part of his life. At that moment, she was the only one that he really trusted.

Marie was so lost in movements of her body that she didn’t realize Logan had woken up until he molded himself to her body from behind. Marie jerked slightly at first, but quickly continued with the routine as Logan fitting his arms to hers and began moving with her. To keep them perfectly in sync, Marie linked her fingers with Logan’s and leaned back fully into his broad chest.

“What are we doing?” Logan whispered softly in her ear as Marie twisted them around so they were now facing in the opposite direction.

“We’re doin’ Tai Chi and yer not s’posed ta talk while yer doin’ it,” Marie informed him, her voice equally soft.

Though she showed no sign of it with her words or movements, Marie was incredibly frazzled by Logan’s body pressed so completely to hers as they shifted through the sensual movements. Logan certainly didn’t help the situation by nuzzling his face into her hair and purring softly. There was no doubt in Marie’s mind that he was certainly feeling better after his nap. Logan only ever purred when he was completely relaxed.

Releasing his hands, Marie turned around so that she was facing Logan. There wasn’t even an inch of space between them as she stared up at his face. The look in his eyes made her breath catch in her throat. In all her life, Marie had never had anyone look at her like that.

“Ah need ta go have a shower. Ah’m all sweaty,” Marie breathed out as Logan dropped his head down and pressing his cheek against hers. She let her eyes fall shut when she heard him purring in her ear.

Logan’s arms remained wrapped around her waist and Marie could feel him nod. “I can help you.”

“Ah’m not... Ah’m not sure that’s such a good idea,” Marie gasped, unconsciously linking her arms behind his neck.

“Why not?” Logan whispered, his breath warm against her throat.

Marie groaned at the feel of it and held him tighter. “Well... ya have enough ta worry ‘bout without dealin’ with the emotions of a girl who’s been in love with ya since she was seventeen.”

Pulling back, Logan stared deeply into her eyes, a thousand emotions playing out in the fathomless depths. “But what if she’s the only thing about my past that I want to remember?”

The next conscious thought Marie had was of lying in her bed with Logan resting on top of her, his head pillowed on her breasts. They were sprawled in a tangle of naked limbs, both of them content drifting off to sleep as the candles began to flicker out.

“Gawd help me, but Ah do love ya, Logan,” Marie murmured as her fingers trailed up his spine and into his hair.

Raising himself up on his elbows, Logan peered down at her face. There was a hint of a smile on his lips as he leaned down and captured her mouth in another searing kiss. Both of them were panting when he finally released her and Marie reached up to brush the sweat damp hair away from his face.

“I love you too, Marie.”