...be with you...
Half-remembered memories of a theater.
...in your time of need...
Fire. An explosion, maybe. A shudder that collapses the ceiling
into ruins. Over time, the dust settles.
...as I have always been...
As before, Rogue wonders why, instead of conveying comfort,
those words chill her soul. The words, along with the chill,
are part of her inheritance from Gambit's psyche. Bits of
his life forever embedded into hers as the result of one kiss.
If she can identify the teasingly familiar voice, she will
understand all she needs to of the underlying fear which drives
Remy to hide his life in lies. The thought brings little comfort.
All mah life ah've been runnin' away. Nevah far enough
or fast enough. Seems like mah past is always catchin' up.
The limousine turns onto the final leg of its journey to
the winding driveway of the Xavier estate. Rogue stares vaguely
at the slowly passing scenery.
Always bringin' me back, kickin' and screamin'.
Tseidel Romanov listens inattentively to the buzzing small
talk between Dr. McTaggert and Kurt Wagner. She's more intrigued
by the young woman seated across from her. Tseidel realized
that there was something more to her rescue. Something beyond
the possibility that she could cure the Legacy Virus.
She had known the moment she had seen this young woman hesitate,
mid-air, before the mutant who had introduced himself only
as Remy. She had expected to see his eyes burn with anger
when Rogue abandoned him to rescue her. Tseidel had not been
prepared to see the flicker of hope fade into stark desperation.
Rogue's eyes catch hers. Tseidel returns her gaze, silently
Were ya worth it, gal?
Rogue's thoughts wander. After she left the X-men, she drifted
into Amnesty International as a "special operative".
Her background in group dynamics, socialization and learned
behaviors combined with her strength and innate compassion,
proved invaluable in the rescue and treatment of torture victims.
When the information on New Genosha came in, Rogue's previous
Genoshan experiences made her a natural choice. Because the
information involved a mutant with the reported ability to
cure the Legacy Virus, Rogue had convinced Dr. McTaggert to
join a preliminary surveillance team. And Kurt? Kurt jumped
at the chance to play "big brother" and volunteered
to accompany Rogue. For her own safety, of course.
It should have been simple, routine even. Get in. Verify
the information. Get out. Unfortunately, the mutant they sought
was part of a line of prisoners being led to execution. Suddenly
it became a matter of life and death.
Should've been a piece o' cake.
The surveillance team was unprepared for an assault against
the armed forces of New Genosha. They had planned for a covert
operation. Low-key. Nothing flashy. Hastily, Rogue and Kurt
slapped together a rescue attempt. While he and Dr. McTaggert
led the Amnesty International team to safer ground, Rogue
would try to fly in and rescue Tseidel. She had less than
The limousine pulls to a stop before the centuries old mansion.
Kurt, the gallant gentleman as always, teleports to the other
side of the door to hold it open for the ladies. He bows before
offering his hand in assistance to Tseidel. She accepts with
a tight smile. Dr. McTaggert brushes him aside while Rogue
impatiently gets out on the other side.
Rogue planned to go back for Remy as soon as the rest of
the team was safe. Had promised him as much before she had
flown off to rescue Tseidel. The Amnesty International team
had barely gotten airborne before X-Factor appeared to "escort"
them back to Muir Isle. Val Cooper had immediately started
in on Rogue, citing the political repercussions that were
going to result.
Rogue had tried to listen, tried to understand the fuss.
In her heart, she believed that the rest of the world would
have enjoyed a chance to bring the Genoshans to trial for
crimes against humanity. Then, she had understood. These had
not been crimes committed against humanity. These were crimes
Cyclops and Professor Xavier had been waiting when they arrived
at Muir Isle. Between them and Val Cooper, Rogue was made
to understand that the United Nations had entered into tentative
negotiations with New Genosha regarding the concentration
camps. All of the camps. If Rogue attempted another
rescue, the negotiations would be ended. She might be able
to save Remy, but it would be at the cost of hundreds of other
She would've taken the risk--if they hadn't physically restrained
her. Rogue chewed her lip thoughtfully. Standing before the
mansion's entrance, she still wasn't sure if she forgave them
for that. Only yesterday, they had received word from Hank
that Remy was safe. The circumstances surrounding his return
were still unclear, but Gambit had appeared at the mansion
in one piece. And nothing was going to keep Rogue away for
Continued in Chapter
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