Dedicated to Maelstrom, Poilass and Kaylee because it was inspired by Maelstrom's various Bobby/Hank stories involving sweets, Poilass' stories about Bobby and Hank were great fodder for my imagination (you should have seen me, thinking "oooh! That's good! And I bet they'd act that way too!"), and because Poi got Kaylee to write the Bobby/Gambit stories, which contained the line: "If Hank can get up for midnight Twinkie runs, he can get up for this!" in "He Sorta Kinda Maybe Loves Him" by Kaylee. Thanks, all of you. <G>
Bobby padded with light feet down the plushly carpeted hall. It was odd, not having to listen for Jean's motherly footsteps, face her long-suffering glare as she came out of her bedroom to stare him down until he went back to bed.
She was Scott's problem now. Only three days ago they had been married. They were still on their honeymoon.
And Bobby no longer had to worry about waking her with loud feet or thoughts.
His eyes already accustomed to the dark, he wandered through the halls out of feel more than sight. He went down the stairs, twice, then through the cellar and down again. A light was on, and he had to blink as he entered the brightly lit laboratory Hank spent most of his time in.
As predicted, Hank was at his desk.
A lab coat was stretched taut across his broad frame, his head resting against his arms on the desk. A Grover sat, well worn, shoved in the corner between his desk, wall and bookcase. Bobby could still remember giving Beast the toy. It had been a few months after Beast had turned himself blue and furry. For some strange, unwarranted reason, it had cheered the man up.
Of course, Bobby had known it would. He had a sense about these things.
Bobby stopped in the doorway, taking in the scene with all the machines turned on, the screen saver showing happily flying toasters on three different computers, several different vials of stuff sitting in various places, a double helix being attacked by the Legacy Virus rotating on the largest screen of all.
Bobby smiled slightly. Imagine Scott's surprise if Bobby suddenly used the term "double helix." But really, even he couldn't stay around Beast and his lab stuff for years without picking something up.
Finally, eyes adjusted, he padded across the room to where Hank slept, jaw slightly slack.
Bobby knelt, bringing his face up to where Hank's ear was. "I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener," he whispered softly. "That is what I'd really like to be-e-e! 'Cause if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener, everyone would want a bite of me-e-e!"
There was no response from the sleeping figure, and so, very softly, Bobby started to sing it again.
Blue lips twitched as Bobby sang "that is what." A guttural noise, as if the sleeping figure were trying to both doze and be awake and singing at the same time. Finally, eyes still closed, grin spreading, Hank murmured "everyone would want a bite of me-e-e!" just as Bobby did.
Iceman grinned hugely and watched Beast.
There was no other movement.
"C'mon, Grover," Bobby whispered. "Time for a midnight Twinkie run."
The grin returned full force, and one eye opened slowly. "Are you sure?" Hank croaked out.
Bobby glanced down at his watch, which was glowing. "Yup. It's midnight."
The blue figure suddenly lurched out of his chair, shrugging out of his lab coat and grabbing his car keys off the desk. "Then, my astute colleague, what are we loitering about this refuse heap for? Let us depart!"
"And then we'll leave!" Bobby cracked.
They were out the door and down the porch steps before anyone had even realized they were gone.
"Bobby," Hank called as the younger man ran around the opposite side of the house. "My automobile is in this direction."
"Right," Bobby answered, smiling that impish smile he didn't seem aware of. "But Storm's car is this way."
Hank tried to puzzle through the logic for a moment, then finally gave up. "And how does that pertain to us?"
"We used to hot-wire the Prof's car. Then we hot-wired Scott's car. With Scott gone, our next leader is Storm. Time to hot-wire her car!" He grinned.
Hank could think of at least a dozen different reasons why they shouldn't hot-wire Storm's car -- but, suddenly, he found himself under the dashboard, eyeing the wires and trying to remember how this worked.
At last the engine roared to life, and Bobby -- practically hopping up and down in his excitement -- bade Hank to "movemovemove!!!!"
"I needed to have a more misspent youth," Bobby noted as he tore down the driveway, out onto the service road.
"Robert," Hank answered, eyeing the speedometer. "I believe you've broken enough laws. The speed law. The law of this car."
"This car?" Bobby asked.
"Hmm. I don't believe this car was made to go this fast."
Bobby grinned and slowed down a little bit. Then he sped back up when Hank stopped looking. "I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener!" Bobby sang at the top of his lungs as he rolled down his window.
"That is what I'd really like to be-e-e!" Hank chimed in, complete with harmony as the wind ruffled through his thick blue fur.
"For if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener!" they both sang. "Everyone would want a bite of me-e-e!"
"What are we going to get?" Bobby asked, a grin on his face.
"TWINKIES!" Hank shouted, caught up in Bobby's infectious happiness.
"And what time is it?"
"And what is this called?"
"THE MIDNIGHT TWINKIE RUN!"
"And why do we get Twinkies at midnight?"
"BECAUSE SCOTT WON'T LET US EAT THEM FOR BREAKFAST!"
"Right!" Bobby said triumphantly. "I have trained you well!"
"But you forgot one," Hank said seriously.
"What one? Oh, I remember. Why do we call this the midnight Twinkie run?"
"BECAUSE SCOTT'S RUNNING AFTER US SINCE WE TOOK HIS CAR!!" Beast yelled gleefully.
"I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener!" Bobby sang at the top of his lungs, Hank swiftly chiming in.
They sang that all the way down to the AmPm on the corner of Fifth and Elm, where Storm's car whipped into a parking space that looked too little to hold it, and both men jumped out.
Hank took one look at Bobby and started laughing. "You look like one might picture the particularly unpleasant afterlife!"
Bobby grinned irrepressibly. "I know! It's a midnight Twinkie run!"
Hank laughed at his best friend. Bobby wore an old red and white baseball cap over unbrushed, sleep-tangled brown hair. He'd dug out his old pajamas from somewhere, the ones he used to wear when the two of them were up studying all night -- the beginning of the midnight Twinkie runs. They were pink -- they used to be white, but he'd washed them with his red shirt -- and had bunnies holding flowers all over them. Bobby said they were "cute." Hank said they were tacky.
But what really made the outfit were the bunny head slippers that Bobby insisted were real. Of course, they weren't, but Bobby insisted.
"Twinkies!" Bobby shouted, pointing to the AmPm doors.
Both adults ran to the doors, bursting through them like madmen.
The clerk's eyes widened and he took three steps back, then watched as they tore through to the back of the store.
"Eureka!" Hank shouted gleefully.
"English?" Bobby hollered back from the other side.
Bobby dropped the bag of chips back on the rack, and practically flew through the store, even vaulting over a stack of sodas. Hank was busily taking all the Twinkies and putting them in his shirt, and when Bobby arrived he used Bobby's shirt -- which was abnormally long and fit many Twinkies -- to deposit the candy in. Bobby held them carefully as Hank put the last package into his friend's mouth, then they both walked ponderously over to the cash register.
"Mhphmmn," Bobby said to Hank.
"You don't have any money?"
"Oh. Well, I do," Hank said, smiling. Not once had Bobby ever paid for the Twinkies. Hank pulled out his wallet -- after pouring the packages of Twinkies onto the counter -- and pulled out thirty dollars. "This should cover it," he said, handing the bills to the clerk before scooping his Twinkies back up and heading out to the car with Bobby.
"Phmm!" Bobby shouted.
"Oh, right," Beast nodded, grabbing two bottles of Mountain Dew. "And this, too," he said to the clerk, who only nodded and watched the odd pair leave.
After pouring the Twinkies into the back seat, Bobby and Hank got in and started driving -- quickly -- home. Hank unwrapped Twinkies and fed them to Bobby as the younger man drove, eating his own Twinkies in-between bites.
Finally, the auto protesting, they got back to the mansion and parked Storm's car, then got out and started unloading the Twinkies once again.
"Got 'em all?" Bobby whispered.
"I believe I do," Hank whispered back.
"Don't want to leave any behind. Remember that time left some in Scott's car?"
Hank could, indeed, remember the mess that had ensued when the Twinkie had heated up and exploded.
"Yes. Yes, I'm certain I have them all," Hank said at last. It was dark, but he didn't think he'd left any...
"Okay. Let's go." They snuck back into the mansion, down into cellar, through that to the lab, where the Twinkies spilled out of Bobby's shirt like a delightful, yummy yellow waterfall.
Hank and Bobby proceeded to eat as many of the Twinkies as they possibly could.
Half an hour later they were both ill, but the Twinkie pile had barely a dent in it.
"I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener," Bobby sang softly.
Hank smiled and broke in with the harmonies to Bobby's barely on-key rendition. "That is what I'd really like to be-e-e. 'Cause if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener. Everyone would want a bite of me-e-e!"
Bobby stopped, turning to grin at Hank.
"How long has it been since we made Twinkie runs, Robert?" Hank asked softly.
"Long time." Bobby shrugged. "I haven't needed much help with calculus lately."
Hank laughed. "No, you haven't. But I needed help with ... life. Thank you." He smiled warmly at his best friend, ignoring the blush that was creeping up Bobby's neck.
"I just had a sweet tooth," Bobby said, grinning. "And now I'm sleepy. G'night, Hank." Smiling, Bobby stood. Twinkies fell out of his lap, landing with the others on the floor.
Bobby yawned and headed out the door, hearing Hank moving around amid the Twinkies in the room behind him.
"I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener..." came wafting from the lab.
Bobby grinned and whispered the words all the way back to bed.
Storm hesitated just outside the door, wondering if she should bother Henry by telling him she was off to the mall with Jubilee to find clothing. Slowly, she pushed open the door to the lab and peered inside.
Hank was sleeping soundly on his desk, head cradled on his arms. Ororo smiled fondly and walked over, picking up the five Twinkie wrappers next to him. She patted his head and found his lab coat, draping it over his shoulders. "Good night, Henry," she said softly, then walked back up the stairs.
"Ready?" Jubilee asked impatiently.
"Yes," Ororo said, smiling. They walked out to Storm's car, sitting in the shade of an oak tree. The day wasn't old enough yet to be hot, but the sun coming up felt warm on Storm's back. Sorry to leave the outside air, she got in the car and closed the door.
"Mmm!" Jubilee said, leaning from the passenger seat to look in the back. "Twinkie! Can I have it?"
Storm frowned as she looked at the Twinkie Jubilee held, taken from the backseat. "Surely." Odd. She couldn't remember ever having bought Twinkies before...
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