Rumors continued to spread around the school about Rogue and Logan. There wasn't a person who didn't hear it, including Remy. Rogue was mortified. She tried to ignore it, reassure her husband, and hope that something more entertaining would come to the minds - and right out the mouths - of the young children.
She sat in the parlor with Remy drinking sweet tea, looking at the morning paper.
"Anything in here we need to pay attention to? Any missions?" Rogue said, sipping her drink.
"More protests," he told her.
"When are there not?"
"When are there not what?" Scott said, coming into the room with Jean.
"More protests against us," Rogue said.
"Oh, of course," he said, sitting down across from her. "People who don't even know us will march against us."
"They don't understand, Scott," Jean said as she sat down next to him, always the diplomat. "They need Storm's gift to help with the crops. Rogue, can you and she fly the jet down south?"
"Oh yeah, she told me about that. Damn, gotta love her mutation. I'm happy to go with her."
"Well, wha' about this stuff?" Remy asked, referring to the protests, squeezing his wife's hand. "Do we need to use the jet?"
"We have more than one," she teased, leaning her mouth to his for a soft kiss.
Their kiss was broken by the door swinging open and Logan bursting in with Xavier and Jubilee. The two couples looked up at them and said nothing.
"What are we looking at?" he questioned, noticing the paper they were studying.
Remy was the first to speak up.
"More of the same ol'," he said, handing the paper to his former friend, who hadn't missed the acceleration of Rogue's heart rate since he came into the room.
Rogue kept Remy's hand close to her mouth, trying to express her love for him as she avoided Logan altogether. Logan, on the other hand, made his presence the center of the entire room's attention just to drive Rogue crazy. Jean's mind was flooded with Rogue's thoughts and she felt for her.
**Want me to help you get out of this room?** Jean asked Rogue telepathically.
**As fast as you can.**
"Well, while you brilliant gentlemen and sweet Jubilee figure out the protests, I think I'll deliver Rogue to Storm."
Jean stood up, noticing Logan watching her. Rogue ignored Logan's gaze and kissed her husband easily and lovingly.
"You be careful," he said.
"We'll be back for dinner," she promised.
Following Jean out of the room, they walked a few yards and then down one of the staircases and Rogue sighed with relief.
"You okay?" Jean asked.
"Thank you," Rogue said, leaning against the railing.
"I can hear how relieved you are."
"I'm sure I'm very loud, but if you can try to filter me out. You know I don't like you or the Professor listening to me."
"I'm not attempting to. I never am, but you know sometimes it's harder than others," Jean said, shutting Rogue's thoughts away. "But I have been there and if it's any use to you…it's not worth it."
"I'm not trying to get into your business, but I do know how much you love your husband. I was a bridesmaid at your wedding. And-I've been in a position of having Logan pay attention to me. It tore everything apart to a point where I let Logan shove his claws into me and kill me because I thought I'd killed Scott."
"I know. I know what happened back then but I have no intention of letting anything-"
"Rogue," Jean said. "Rogue, you can stop it. Stop it now. I know what it feels like. I'm trying to tell you as the friend I've come to be."
Rogue nodded. "I hear what you're saying," she said, not wanting to listen to Jean's version of what she thought she was doing. How could Jean think Rogue would let anything like that happen?
Rogue's thoughts were interrupted by Storm coming over.
"Hey," Storm said with bright eyes looking at her dearest friends.
Rogue felt nauseous and needed to be away from thoughts of Logan and everyone thinking that she was guilty.
"I'll be outside," she told Storm.
Storm looked at Jean.
"Logan," Jean said. "Maybe she'll talk to you."
"I'll give it a try," Storm replied.
She found Rogue on the swings, watching the children play. Her white tendrils curled down in front of her face. She was deep in thought and it took Storm a minute to interrupt her. Walking over, she took the swing beside her.
"Penny for your thoughts," she said to her friend.
"I just ran away from my husband because I couldn't face the tension."
"The tension of Logan being that close to you?"
"The tension of him purposefully driving me crazy in front of my husband," she snapped. "What is he doing?"
"Whatever it is, it's apparently working," Storm said.
Rogue leaned back, extending her feet into the air, swinging forward.
"Okay, let's talk about this."
"Let's not," Rogue replied.
"No, I'm serious. What's going on anyway? How true are the rumors?"
"I'm not having an affair with Logan," she said firmly.
"But what have you done?"
"I-I've let him kiss me."
"And I've been more honest with him than I probably should've been. But I hate myself for ever being in a position where I'm called the things I am around this school."
"Forget about the school for the moment. This is about you and what you're feeling."
"I feel terrible. When I'm with my husband I'm so happy. I love Remy more than anything in the world. He makes me breathe in every day and I want to taste my life with him. I want to be with him. He is the man I married and he is my soul, my heart, my mind, everything."
She paused, her eyes filling with tears.
"But my essence, my essence cries out for Logan every time I see him and I don't know how to make it go away. It's not just about lust or some energy that has no substance behind it. It's real and it scares me."
"Do you think that he feels real feelings for you?"
"I think he might. But you know, as flattering as that might be to me, it scares me. That makes Logan all the more ambitious. Now I'm a woman he's got real interest in. And he won't stop until he has what he desires. And Remy, being the gentlemen, that can only last for so long. Though they share a friendship, that won't last very long at this rate, obviously."
"Do you want to sleep with Logan?"
Rogue said nothing, but bent her head down in shame. Storm's worries grew, but she was quiet for a moment, thinking as she swung beside her friend.
"Maybe it wouldn't be that good," Storm said lightly and Rogue laughed.
"It'd be great," Rogue countered.
Storm's eyes widened in surprise.
"Wow, someone's been thinking about this."
"Shhh," Rogue said, now regretting she'd said anything. "God, what's wrong with me?"
"I don't know but now it's getting interesting."
"Don't joke with me at a time like this."
"Why not? What else am I going to do?"
"Shake me hard until I stop having feelings for two men?"
Storm smiled. "Why don't you help me power up the jet so I can water some much-needed crops in the mid-west?"
"Do you really not hate me?"
"Why would I hate you?"
"Because I know how much you care about Remy."
"I care about Logan too. The point is you're my friend first. I know how much pain you're in."
"I never really thought a woman could feel this way about two men at the same time. I thought it was bullshit."
"Well, let's keep talking while I create a storm mid-flight."
Once in the jet, setting the engines, Storm asked another tough question.
"Do you really love Logan?"
"Well I…I guess in some way, from all those years ago when I first met him—"
"Stop dancing around the question."
Rogue took her hand off the navigator and covered her wincing face.
"Yeah," she answered honestly. "And it's really powerful. In the beginning, when I was with Remy, it was powerful too and it still is, but the very core of me…I feel like that will always belong to Logan."
"Because you knew him first?"
"Because he's inside me. I have all these pieces of people inside me but he is one of the strongest, having implanted himself in me to keep me alive all those times. It's strong. I know him and he knows me."
"So now he knows just what to do to drive you crazy."
Rogue's happy thoughts of Logan comfortably tucked inside her mind were overwhelmed by thoughts of losing her husband.
"What if Logan is lying to me and he doesn't care?" Rogue asked. "What if it really is just about wanting me right here, right now and once he's gotten me he'll dump me and I'll have ruined the best thing in my life?"
"That's something you'll have to consider if you go that far. What would you do?"
"Oh Logan would be lucky if he had any adamantium left in him at all."
Storm bit her lip as she smiled at the temper of her southern friend.
"I'm sure some of our male students would be right in the front row to see that war."
"It'd be too damned X-rated for them. I'd make him bleed if he used me for sex while making me believe it was love. I'm married. Do you know what this is doing to me? And if it's doing this to me, what it must be doing to my husband?"
Rogue let go of the controllers and slumped back in the chair.
"I'm horrible. I'm married. There should be no question. No question."
"But I keep asking them."
"Yeah. Thanks for that by the way."
"Any time. So you love both of these men. Which do you see yourself growing old with?"
"I always thought after I said my vows that it would be Remy. And it's been Remy. But now with Logan so close to me, so in my reach, I can see both."
"Well I hate to tell you, but you can't have both. So eventually you're going to have to choose."
"Believe me I know. I know they're not appetizers on a plate I get to pick at and enjoy whenever I see fit. I have to choose. And I have to choose now. But…is Logan even on the menu for me? I've already made my choice…haven't I?"
"Sweetie, in this world there are endless choices, but what you have to be careful about is that you are holding people's feelings in your hands. Don't take that lightly. And don't make a 'right now' choice. Don't do what feels good for the moment because you'll regret it later. Make the choice that will be good for life."
Rogue nodded. "Yes, that's what I've been trying desperately to do."
"And trust me, I know Logan can make it hard."
Rogue rolled her eyes.
To Be Continued