Stories by K-Nice
Walls Came a'Tumblin' Down"
Remy catches Rogue in the midst of one of her more self-pitying moods and invites
her along on one of his late-night partying jaunts to New York City.
Rogue and Gambit play Bonnie and Clyde.
(Some sexual innuendo)
Rogue and Gambit experience the pain, disorientation and fear of a major life-changing
17 years after the events in "...Walls...,"
Rogue and Gambit, now happily married and with children, reconsider what their
happiness really means.
Rogue and Gambit mourn the loss of someone dear.
Belladonna returns to Salem Center to make her peace with Gambit.
"Blood and Bone"
NYPD detectives Remy LeBeau and Ororo Munroe investigate a horrific string of
rape/murders that hit closer to home than any of them realizes.
Roses, Crown of Thorns"
After being stripped of their powers by the High Evolutionary, Rogue and Gambit
meet at a bar and rehash old arguments and scars.
When Storm learns of Rogue's abandonment of Gambit, she avenges her friend's
death in an unconventional way.
in Love: Once More, for Old Heart's Sake"
After reconciling during the Phalanx battles in space, Rogue and Gambit go for
one last motorcycle ride together. Assume OZT and the Trial of Gambit never
Excerpts of some of Rogue and Gambit's arguments come to light in this answer
to Em's 350-word challenge.
A young "Reb" recovers from a beating delivered by her mother.
Get So Lonely"
Rogue traces back her history with touch as an addiction and her self-imposed
When Gambit returns to the X-Men, he must wade through the lies and half-truths
he and his teammates still tell each other.
"Maybe on Some
Emily Darkholme and Remington LeBeau are betrothed to each other by their parents.
in Another Life"
Six years after "Maybe on Some
Other Day," Emily eagerly anticipates an upcoming ball -- and her first
chance in years to see Remy LeBeau again.
in Some Other Time"
The Rogue and the Gambit, leaders of the Brotherhood and the Guild, respectively,
face off for what will likely be their final battle. Sequel to "Possibly
in Another Life."
Rogue decides to indulge herself in something she never had as a teenager --
a prom dress.
Rogue tries to see only what she wants to see when she goes back for Remy.
After their latest breakup, a drunken Gambit tries to call Rogue and let her
know what's on his mind.
Rogue accompanies Mystique on a stealth mission. Written for Em's 350-word challenge.
Gambit and the Sisterhood of Evil Mutants take on the mysterious Center to save
elsewhere in Alykat's World:
"Beauty Comes to Those Who
After decades of marriage, Bobby and Cecilia still go to Brooklyn regularly
to have Cece's braids redone.
Iceman deals with his feelings of guilt and loss after his father's death.
When the young students of the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters enjoy the
hot summer sun, Bobby longs to return to the cold. Takes place during the X-Men's
Bobby decides to leave the X-Men permenantly and get a "real" life,
while Gambit struggles to feel alive again after being rescued from the Antarctic.
When Bastion came to the X-Mansion, he took everything. Now that the X-Men have
returned home, each of them deals with that loss in their own way.
Disclaimer: The X-Men characters,
the New Orleans Thieves and Assassins Guilds, and all other
recognizable characters are copyright to Marvel Entertainment
Group. This work of FanFiction is not meant to impinge on
that copyright or defame Marvel Comics or the X-Men and related
characters in any way. As far as I know, Mulligan's doesn't
exist and neither do the drinks they order.
Copyright: This work of FanFiction is the intellectual
property of K-NICE and her IRL persona. No copying, distributing
or editing of this material is permitted without the express
permission of the creator, K-Nice, under United States copyright
law. Thanks to Smoot, Shai and 'Rith and everyone in #plottingchat
Comments: My email is going wonkie so reply to firstname.lastname@example.org
if you feel the need.
Deep in the heart of New York City, there is a bar seemingly
transported from the middle of nowhere. Mulligan's is dusty,
as if outside its leather covered doors there lies prairie
land or farm country instead of a concrete proving ground
for 8 million broncobusters. The clientele has changed from
bikers to bonders and back -- the black leather decor seems
to attract only certain types of people.
However, deep in the heart of Mulligan's, there sits a young
woman, red-brown hair held off her face with a white kerchief
and her body clothed in broken-in denim. She is doesn't own
a motorcycle and can't stand chains of any sort. Still, she
sits in an even dimmer corner of the already poorly lit bar,
a lit Virginia Slim in her hands. Her bare hands.
Rogue absently rubs her free palm on the soft fabric on her
thighs. The jeans are not as old as they look. Having lost
all of her clothes to Bastion and his metallic hordes, Rogue
spent weeks, and several boxes of detergent, distressing her
new things. After thirty washes, her favorite jeans are more
comfortable than the pair they replaced and she revels in
their feel against her newly sensitive skin. Taking the last
drag from her cigarette, Rogue reaches for the pack, sitting
desolate on the black table. Lighting the new from the old,
Rogue decides to order a beer, just to put something substantial
on the stark table.
She feels surrounded by a cone of silence, even with the
bar full to bursting with rather eclectic individuals. Watching
a couple play games in the corner, Rogue at once lights another
cigarette with the glowing embers of the previous butt. Her
wrists ache with a phantom pain as a young woman handcuffs
herself to a convenient ring above the bench seat. She is
strangely fascinated by the sight. Rogue can not find pleasure
in being confined and the loss of control it implies. She
has long suppressed memories of collars and chains and whips
The girl's partner leans over and begins to kiss her. Rogue
looks away. There is no reason she can't do the things they
do, feel the things they feel. With her powers gone, the only
things holding her back are phantom hurts and long-silent
cries. Her palms sweat as she lights another cigarette, chain-smoking
-- smoking, period -- for the first time since she was fourteen.
She quit for good the day Raven asked her what brand she smoked
so it could be added to the family shopping list. What was
the point of poisoning one's self, if it wasn't even considered
a rebellion? Raven was a difficult parent to rebel against,
but then, she was the quintessential rebel herself, and it
was obviously hard to shock a mutant terrorist.
Raven had always been a rebel by nature, her mutant abilities
freeing her from restraints of gender or race or size or strength.
Now, her mother is chained, handcuffed, locked away in a prison
of both brick and bars and flesh and bones. Rogue still has
goose-bumps from her prison visit the day before. For the
first time, she touched her mother skin to skin, and, for
that instant, both their jails seemed to melt away.
She reaches a hand up to pat the kerchief covering her fading
stripe. The white hair looks odd to her now, with its red-brown
regrowth darkening the roots. The skunk that has plagued her
all her life suddenly looks like a poorly maintained dye job
and Rogue mimics it as she conceals it, still wondering which
color dye she should buy.
Rogue holds her cigarette, the tip burning slowly but surely
toward her fingertips. Serious contemplation is difficult
for her within the pastoral setting of the mansion, so a quiet
night in the Big City is just right for a woman with so much
to ponder. With the High Evolutionary high above the earth,
there are so many things for her to decide. What is she, if
she is not a mutant? Who is she, if she is not Rogue?
Rogue winces and stifles a cry as, for the first time in
many years, she feels an ordinary pain. The cigarette butt
has burned down until it reaches her fingers, leaving a dusty
black mark on her creamy skin. For an instant she feels cigarette
burns on the backs of her hands, on the soft parts of her
arms and legs and she begs herself not to cry out. With no
more voices in her head to distract her, Rogue is forced to
listen to her own voice. In the deafening silence she surrounds
herself with, in the heart of a bustling bar, in the heart
of a hustling city, Rogue finally listens to the weary, petulant
voice of the little girl who never really left the agony of
She reaches for another cigarette, slipping her fingers around
a second beer that has mysteriously appeared. She entertains
a momentary thrill and looks around for her benefactor. She
has hopes that someone ordered it for her, someone attracted
to her melancholy repose. Perhaps this is the night, the opportunity
she's been waiting for, to finally test it out, see what it
feels like to use her skin the way everyone else does. Taking
a drag and a swig, Rogue decides against explorations of her
skin and returns to the excavation on her soul.
A biker pulls up to the bar, sliding into the only remaining
parking space, brown hair billowing out behind him. The monstrous
Hog comes to a precise stop at the curb, settling in between
two smaller bikes. Cautious about his Harley to the point
fastidiousness, it's doting owner contemplates a garage for
as long as it takes his tracking device to start beeping again.
All signs point to Mulligan's, so he turns off the Shi'ar
device and sticks it in one of the more concealed pockets
of his leather jacket.
Crossing the threshold onto the top steps, Gambit blends
right in with current populous. Even without his mutant agility,
he still moves with a certain understated grace. His leather
jacket is scared and scuffed from long, hard rides and short,
violent fights. His jeans are stiff with road dirt and the
chain accents on his jacket and boots are dull and worn. His
eyes rove the bar, its dark, smoky interior both familiar
and alien at the same time. For the first time in his life,
Remy takes his shades off to complete indifference. No stares
or sharply intaken breathes, no uncomfortable shuffling not
even the odd heaving chest. But then, 90% of world has brown
eyes just like his, so why should anyone take notice.*
He stares at himself in the bar mirror and sees everything
he used to be washed away. He is "Diablo Blanc" no longer,
and looking at his current face, he can believe that he never
was. Stepping down in to the bar, dodging his muscle aches
though sheer force of will, he scans for his target. In an
unlit corner of gloom, surrounded by a corona of gray smoke,
sits his prize. As she reaches forward to tap her ashes into
the tray, he notes her bare hands and covered head. He is
glad for the white contrast, making her seem more familiar
even as their entire world is changing from what it was once.
He weaves his way through the crowd, pressing through the
bodies toward her solitary table. Dragging a chair from another
place setting, he straddles it silently and waits for her
to acknowledge his presence. She seems wrapped up in a world
all her own, ignoring all outside stimuli, even handsome Cajuns
close enough for her to touch. But then, she's been ignoring
him for weeks, so he is quite accustomed to the ill treatment.
A waitress appears out of no where, her swallow face ridden
by a general annoyance. "What'll ya have?"
Gambit hesitates momentarily, but decides he has every right
to be there, whether Rogue would agree or not. "A Screamin'
Virgin, heavy on the bourbon." Rogue sucks her teeth and shoots
him an irritated look. Gambit stares right back. "It's just
"Right." Rogue's head falls to her glass, watching the suds
swirl in random patterns.
As the girl fades into the background, Rogue pulls another
cigarette from her pack. Without thinking, Gambit moves to
light it, at least having the presence of mind to use a lighter.
That was a hard adjustment, and as he lights his own, he smirks
at the mundaneness of it. He's never really had to use a cigarette
lighter -- his powers were easier use and more accessible.
Remy with a lighter is like Bobby with a melting ice cream
cone or Ororo with an umbrella -- strange.
Rogue leans back, watching the smoke from their cigarettes
swirl and meet in the air between them. Gambit watches her,
waiting for the words to come to him, for conversation he's
planned out over the ride down to materialize. "So, how's
Gambit smirks at the startled expression that crosses her
face, but his lips fall into a hard line. She always underestimates
his skill as a thief, as if denying the fact that he is what
he is will make him stop being it.
Rogue recovers her composure and responds wryly. "She's angry,
bitter and violent -- nothing too unusual." She glances up
at him, a half-smile shoving away some of her gloomy expression.
"She asked about you." Her semi-smile grows coy inch by minute
inch as she waits for his reaction.
Remy cuts his eyes, wondering if he should rise to her bait.
"Um ... what exactly did she say?" He sticks a pinkie in his
drink to stirs the ice, a rather disgusting habit he picked
up in Las Vegas and has yet to wean himself off.
"Ah think her exact words were, 'So did you do him yet?'"
Rogue struggles to keep the smile, to fight the bitterness
that is encroaching on her evening out on the town.
Smothering a smirk, Remy slowly sucks a piece of ice into
his mouth. Rogue watches, subtly bending toward him. She waits
for the innuendo, for the flirting that has been so dreadfully
absent in the last few weeks.
"You almost did, back in Antarctica." Remy finally lets loose
his bad-mutha grin.
Rogue puts her elbows on the table, pushing herself forward
until he fills her field of vision. "Ah didn't mean to do
"Yeah, I know." Remy stops, his eyes hard as he stubs out
his cigarette inches from her hand. He ignores her flinch
and then goes for blood. "It was really my own fault, right,
my guilt drove you to it? Dat's what you said, right?" His
eyes are more dangerous now than they ever were with their
Rogue defeats the urge to move away, fascinated by the ice-cold
rage he is showing her for the first time. "Ah was confused."
Remy moves in closer, grasping one of her hands in his. It
is not a gentle touch and the electricity the leaps between
them is pain not pleasure. Pulling her across the table and
leaning in to meet her half-way, Remy lowers his voice to
an Arctic whisper. "No. You were a killer."
To the couple at the booth, they appear to leaning in for
bit of necking. To three guys at the bar, they seem to be
arm wrestling. Neither view is right. Neither view is wrong.
Rogue could break his gaze, she knows this. She could look
away and stay twisted and alone. Remy is shoving it in her
face -- they are the same side of a single, warped coin. Brutally
painful childhoods, rescued by dubious criminals and turned
loose on the world to work out their bitter frustrations.
They are spending their young adulthood as pennies on a train
track, waiting for the big one to finally come along. With
differing levels of mass destruction but the same shattered
souls, they have spent their lives in a downward spiral culminating
in this knock-down, drag-out epiphany.
"And that was the most confusing thing of all." She doesn't
cry, doesn't look away in defeat or self-loathing. Eye to
eye, broken life to broken life, Rogue knows why he loves
her, why he stays around no matter what she does to deter
him. He knows she's the one person with no reason to look
down on him, no right to judge him. Without judgments and
guilt and shame, there could have been hope and trust and
Her heart cracks around that chilled ache, opening it back
up for the first time, letting a tear trickle down, not for
him, not for herself, but for the real victim. Their love.
That nebulous bond crushed by repeated betrayals -- his mistrust,
her abandonments. If they had known themselves a little better,
maybe they wouldn't be here, tearing each other's hearts out.
Remy's fingers ache, and not just from the grip he has on
her wrist. The first chance he gets to touch her, and he is
barely restraining himself from violence. He could lash out:
it is his ingrained response and he is deeply wounded enough
to justify it. But in truth, those wounds where cauterized
in the blazing cold sun and he's never hit a woman that hadn't
hit him first. Just the Southern Gentleman in him. Though
he has justification for his anger, he also knows he once
justified working for Satan himself. He relaxes by degrees,
slowly letting it seep off him, like melting snow.
Their eyes burning, they finally break the gaze, yet neither
lets go. They remain tethered to each other, eyes turned inward,
afraid to face the demons at all, but certainly not alone.
As the silence lengthens and the threads between them knot
tighter, they form a new gaze, this one warmer, imbued with
a shared desire for renewal. They have each achieved a measure
of rebirth, shucking off the vestiges of depression and letting
them disappear into the ether.
Even among the revelry, Gambit and Rogue seem to reach a
level of calm. It suits them, like a crown of roses in a fairy-tale
wedding, all their dreams intertwined and blessed by powers
from above. The old school-yard rush fills them again, along
with that fateful sense of forever that haunts them. They
share one of those deep, soul-seeking looks, as intimate as
love making. The connection seems to stretch off into eternity.
Raucous laughter from the bar breaks the moment, and, like
kissers caught in the act, they pull away from each other.
Remy snatches his hand away but leaves it on the table. Rogue
sits stock still, straight up and down, as if she is caught
between leaning forward and leaning back. This is how is always
goes with them: fleeting moments of pleasantness, of nearly
explored passion and then the vines creep in again. Just as
they imagine themselves to be Sleeping Beauty and Prince Charming,
the mental kiss is broken. Before she can be awakened, before
he can learn to love, before the dark spell can be broken
and their lives set right, it is plucked away by the encroaching
blackness of guilt and fear, of sins both real and imagined,
of forgiveness not yet won.
They stare at nothing as their crowns of thorns settle back
into place. Like martyrs impaled on their own past deeds,
they both are struggling to resurrect themselves. With their
powers gone, and with residual naiveté born of youth
and hunger, they expected some substantial change in their
souls. As if there could be some transformation or metamorphosis
from the dark under-belly to the light of decency with the
simple flick of a cosmic switch. The sad thing was, they don't
even need to be good or heroic, just decent, yet even that
is beyond them.
Rogue finally leans in, grabbing a cigarette from the table
and lighting it with the dying ember in her hand. Contrary
to her own belief, Rogue is still Rogue. For now.
"So, what are you gonna do about your mother?" Remy signals
for another drink, unabashedly winking at the waitress. Eyes
or not, he can still be a devil.
Sighing and settling back into her chair, Rogue gives it
a moments thought. "Ah suppose I should start meeting with
her lawyers before her arraignment. Ah'm sure we'll turn something
up, find a way to get her out." She doesn't sound sure. Determined
to try, but not sure.
Remy puts one ankle on the opposite knee, resting his elbows
on his thighs. "Not'in' you need X-help for, uh?" Remy smirks.
Even after accepting what she was, Rogue is still not one
for a prison break. "Well, if you need somet'in' to turn up
or disappear or some Southern Senator to get all riled up
on her behalf, just let me know."
Emerald-green eyes crinkling with good humor, Rogue taps
her stein as the waitress saunters by. "Thanks. I appreciate
They drink without thinking, all their heavy contemplation
done for the evening. Rogue watches the goings-on around them,
pushing away her own doubts. Polishing off the last of his
drink, Remy sets it down, watching her watch them. "You need
a ride back?"
"Nah, Ah'll stay at Momma's place for a few days while Ah
get things together." Whether for the coming court case or
for a new outlook on life, Rogue is hesitant to decide. "Do
you need to get going?"
"Non. Stayin' in de City tonight. I have a place in Gren'ich."
They let their wandering eyes meet again.
Remy orders another drink. Rogue lights another cigarette.
Every thorn has a rose.
* I couldn't find statistics on this, although
I spent an entire morning trying, but given that blue/green/gray
eyes are principally found in European ancestry and the great
majority of the world does not have European ancestry, and
that the great majority of the world is brown eyed, I extrapolated
this figure (ie there are 2 billion people in China and India
alone with brown eyes :)
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