Leaning Toward Normal (March 2012)

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 12:21 pm

When the Elevator touched down and the doors opened, the hallway was eerily quiet except for the sound of a soft weeping. Sitting down with her head in her hands, one of Serena’s older students, ‘Katrina’ was there. She looked hurt. She had a nasty bruise on her left cheek and her arm was bleeding. When they approached her she scrambled back and shook as if she were terrified. She also sensed someone else was down here and smelled the musky scent of Gambit. His smell was unique and a bit ripe as he had not likely been able to shower.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 12:26 pm

Serena heard the weeping as soon as they stepped off the elevator. She looked over and saw Katrina there. She had a nasty bruise on her left cheek and her arm was bleeding. She looked frightened when she saw Serena and Jean. "It's alright Katrina," she told her gently as she approached her. "We aren't going to hurt you. I want you to stay here, alright?"

She could smell Gambit's unique scent. He wore a certain type of cologne that she really liked and no one else in the mansion wore it. Mixed with his natural scent she knew it was him. She decided to leave him there for now until she knew it was safe. He had been affected by the Shadow King as well. She made sure Katrina was safe before going with Jean to Cerebro. The stepped inside and up to the helmet. She turned it over so Jean could see the dark taint on the inside.

"What do you think that is?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 12:48 pm

Like a cat Katrina padded after them but her body changed into that of mystique. She peered around the door as the two women discussed what was wrong with Cerebro. Before either of them could react she was amongst them. She hit Jean hard in the side of the face and sent her sprawling onto the floor and dazed. She hit Serena several times in quick succession. In the back of the head, in the back and in the side. She then grabbed her from behind and put her into a head lock.

“You almost make this to easy,” She said. “Try anything and I’ll snap her pretty little neck,” Mystique said to Jean. Her grip was tight on Serena and if Serena hit her with a blast or an orb she’d likely hurt herself as well. Fortunately, Gambit had shown her how to get out of this particular hold. He made her practice it over and over until she had it down.  

“The Shadow King needs the others, but not you Serena. You he can not affect for some reason. Jean though, he just wants her to suffer for what she did to his people. He wants her to watch as her friends kill one another. He wants her to survive and live on and feel the pain of their deaths until she ROTS!” She growled.

Jean stood, her brown eyes were filled with fury.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:00 pm

The last thing Serena had expected was for Mystique to suddenly appear. She berated herself for being surprised by that. Before she could react Mystique had her in a headlock. Her grip on her was tight and she knew that she couldn't hit her with an energy orb because she would likely hit herself. She remembered though that Gambit had taught her how to get out of this particular hold. She had been made to practice it over and over again. She waited until Mystique was distracted by Jean and she moved. She moved quickly and confidently and within seconds she was out of the hold and had Mystique on the ground. She held up a hand to threaten to hit her with an energy orb. "DON'T move."

She didn't take her eyes off of Mystique but spoke to Jean. "Ok, how do we defeat this guy?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:18 pm

“I need to fix cerebro so I can find the minion that is serving as his conduit. Once I find him or her, I can drive his consciousness out of them. He can not survive without a body. Once it dies than his hold on everyone will fade,” She said. “Luckily, this has happened to cerebro before so I know how to fix this,” She said. As Serena held Mystique at bay Jean unhooked the cable and removed the connector circuit that had been modified to reverse the polarity in the medium solution. She moved to a drawer and pulled out another one and looked at it. It wasn’t modified so she plugged it in and then plugged the cable back in. Instantly the medium solution turned from black to a pearlescent white again. Jean sat down and put on the helmet then turned on the machine.

Even as Serena held Mystique at bay, Nightcrawler suddenly bamfed into the room, touched her and then they both bamfed away out into the hall. In a moment she knew Nightcrawler would attack her just as Mystique did at the same time.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:29 pm

Serena kept her eyes fixed on Mystique as Jean spoke. She had learned her lesson from Gambit and wouldn't give Mystique an opportunity to attack her. Suddenly though she heard the telltale sound of Nightcrawler as he teleported into the room. He touched Mystique and they both vanished. In that moment Serena knew that Nightcrawler was also being affected. She needed to prepare for an attack from them both and protect Jean. The only way to do that was to erect an energy shield. It would quickly drain her energy, but it was the only thing she could think of. She formed an energy shield in the shape of a bubble around Jean and herself. Jean would still be able to use Cerebro, but neither Nightcrawler nor Mystique could hurt them.

"Hurry Jean!"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:48 pm

Both Nightcrawler and Mystique appeared in the room again and they both began to hit and kick the shield. Each strike created ripples in the shield and more and more of Serena’s internal reserves leaked into it as they continued to try and batter it down.

Jean began to seek out the mutant that held the ShadowKings consciousness. She moved as fast as she could but it could take time. “God I wish I had some of Gambit’s luck right about now!” Jean grumbled.

Mystique looked at Serena and smiled. She changed her shape into that of Evan. “Why did you let me die, Serena?” Evan said. “You should have stopped it. You should have protected me!” he said as he looked at her. His blue eyes were accusing in how they looked at her.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:54 pm

Serena could feel her energy reserves being slowly depleted as Nightcrawler and Mystique both tried to get through her shield. Serena didn't know how much longer she could hold the shield up. She knew if the shield dropped that they would likely kill her. Then, she watched as Mystique's shape changed into that of Evan. She breathed in sharply as she saw "him" before her. She told herself over and over again that it wasn't him, but seeing his form brought back terrible memories of that day. She could feel herself slipping and knew she needed to get back in control. She closed her eyes and slowed her breathing. She felt her emotions normalize and it took less energy for her to keep the shield up. She still hoped that Jean would find whoever held the Shadow King's consciousness soon.

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:03 pm

“I’m...trying...Serena,” Jean said as tears leaked from her eyes from the strain.

“You destroyed the conduit, not because I told you to, but because you wanted to save yourself. You know it would kill me, you knew and you still did it,” Evan said. “And I loved you! More than anyone on this world! And you let me die!” Evan said and this his face and body were burned. His one eye was puffed out as all the liquid in it had been reduced to steam. “You...killed me…” Evan said. “You sacrificed me to save yourself!” Evan howled with a ruined throat.

“I...I found him!” Jean said. Nightcrawler and Evan suddenly went berserk against the shield. They threw their bodies against it to try and break it down. Then, suddenly their hands went to their heads and they screamed as if they were on fire. Mystiques imaged changed into her normal self and they both fell to the floor as their screams died. “It’s done,” Jean said and took off the helmet. Just in time to catch Serena.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:09 pm

Serena somehow managed to keep her emotions under control as she watched Mystique in Evan's form torment her. However, she felt her guilt start to bubble up again. Several tears came to her eyes and her body began to tremble from the strain of keeping the shield up. Thankfully, just before the last of her energy gave out Jean located the Shadow King's consciousness. Serena felt her entire body weakening as Nightcrawler and 'Evan' threw themselves up against her shield. Then, they began to scream before their bodies dropped to the ground. Seconds later Serena's energy gave out and she all but collapsed into Jean's arms. A moment later she was unconscious.

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:44 pm

Serena woke up in her own bed in the mansion. To her surprise both her mother and father were there. Once she stirred her mother was there in an instant. “Oh Serena...you had us both so worried,” Isabella said as she touched her forehead and the sides of her face.

When she tried to move her left breast felt like someone had just kicked it. That and she was beyond hungry, beyond thirsty and beyond exhausted. “Jean Gray filled us in at to what all happened,” she said as her father stepped up to her and looked down. “You two are lucky to be alive,” he said. She heard shifting from out in the hall. Logan, Natalya, Steve and Kate all moved to the doorway. “Welcome back Serena,” Someone said, Steve she thought. “Yep, everyone’s here,” Tony said.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:58 pm

Serena didn't know how long she had been out. Her entire body ached and she was more tired than she had ever been in her entire life. Her left breast ached horribly and she knew without looking at it that it was badly bruised and injured. She was also terribly hungry and thirsty. She was surprised to see her parents both there at her bedside. She glanced out into the hall and saw Logan, Natalya, Steve, and Kate there.

"How long have I been out?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:25 pm

“Almost 2 days. And there was a young man who came often to check on you. Gambit?” Tony said. Isabela turned and gave Tony a sharp look as if what he was implying by his tone was not important right then.

“Your friends here also visited you while you were sleeping,” she said as she gave Isabella a few ice chips to wet her mouth before she gave her water. “Everyone seems to think you’re the hero in this attack,” She said.

“Jean also said you would be happy to know that Charles is doing much better,” She added and then presented her with the straw so she could drink. “She tells me that your teaching? Life Sciences? How has that been for you?” She asked.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:33 pm

Serena talked to them for a while about the classes she was teaching as Kate and Steve went to get her something to eat. She ate slowly and talked to them all before Logan, Natalya, Kate, and Steve left Serena alone with her parents.

"I think I want to come home," she finally told them. Little did she know that Gambit was standing outside her room and overheard what she was saying. She knew that Gambit had been influenced, but those words he had said had to have come from some feelings deep inside of him.

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:48 pm

The thought of Serena leaving made Gambit’s heart ache. He remembered everything that he said and that he did. It horrified him but he couldn’t change it, only move past it, like everyone else. When she first arrived in the mansion, he had thought that way. The Shadow King must have pulled his thoughts from that time.

If he were being honest, the look Isabella gave him had intimidated him. Suspicious disapproval if he were to guess and her father just frowned at him. He took in a breath then pivoted to the doorway.

Isabella glanced in his direction then shifted her gaze back to Serena. “Well, we will certainly love for you to come home,” she said But Gambit spoke up. “This is her home,” Gambit said. “Ok, so you mean a mansion where everyone just tried to hurt and kill everyone else? That home?” Tony said sarcastically. “An Event like when ‘Ghost’ visited the tower.” Gambit said giving it right back to her father. Tony’s face hardened and Serena saw that look before. Not many people stood up to her father like this. But Gambit was a unique individual.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:57 pm

Serena heard someone enter her room and she looked over and saw Gambit walk in. His last words to her still echoed in her head and it was difficult for her to look at him. She listened as he argued back and forth with her parents about her remaining at the mansion. She was rather surprised when Gambit stood up to her father. Not many people had the balls to do something like that. Both of her parents could be rather intimidating...her father in particular. She sighed and shook her head and looked at her parents.

"Could I talk to Gambit alone please?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 4:45 pm

Isabella and Tony both looked at Serena with blank expressions. And then at Gambit with guarded expressions. THen at one another. Tony nodded. “We’ll be back in a little white kiddo,” Tony said and they both left them alone. Gambit watched them go then came up to her and sat at her bedside.

“You can’t mean this...leaving,” He said. Half of his face was bruised and an eye was swollen. His left hand was wrapped up as well. “Those were my words Serena but taken from when you first arrived. I didn’t know you then, not like I know you now. I...remember everything that I said and did. And that wasn’t mean cherie mwen,” He said softly. “I only feel love for you,” He said.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 4:52 pm

Serena felt vulnerable being in her bed like she was. She didn't have the energy though to get up...not yet. She winced a little as she looked at him. He looked like hell...although she was certain with her clothes off she didn't look any better. She was truly afraid to look at her left breast. She glanced at Gambit slightly as he began to talk. She didn't know what to say at first. But his last words truly left her speechless. She looked over at him and struggled for a moment before she finally managed to speak.

"You love me?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:51 pm

Gambit searched his feelings. He had been locked up in that cell not knowing if Serena was alive or dead. In his mind he had contributed to her downfall if it happened. A horrible feeling. One he hoped he’d never have to feel again.

“After Rogue died I felt cold, angry and joyless. THen you came along and showed me that though I was sad, though I had lost, life had real meaning I can’t let you go Serena...I won’t let you go. The thought of never seeing you again makes me want to weep. I can’t lose again….so soon!” He said. “I’m just not strong enough, “ He said as tears came to his eyes. He looked at her “Scott, Jean, they all know what an asset you are to the team. “The students love you Serena but they’ll have to get in line because, yes, I do love you. Every moment I’m not with you im thinking of you,” Gambit said. “I want your love, your attention your smiles. I’m so selfish when it comes to you I almost feel like some thief that wants to steal you away from the world,” He said.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:59 pm

As Serena listened to what Gambit had to say she felt tears of happiness come to her eyes. She had not thought she would ever love again after Evan died. Her heart had felt cold and hard until Gambit had come into her life and warmed it up again. At first, she thought that what was between them was just a fling, but as time had gone on she realized that her feelings for him had grown. However, it hadn't been until just now that she knew she loved him too. She gently grabbed his shirt and pulled him down towards her and kissed him. She let the kiss last for a few long moments before she pulled back and looked up into his eyes

"I love you too Gambit."

She kissed him again but then pulled back and looked back up at him with a grin. "Oh, but if you call me an ungrateful bitch again I'll slap you so hard your teeth will fall out."

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:08 pm

Gambit’s heart swelled with happiness. And her kisses were warm and true and alive with love. His stomach was filled with butterflies but he managed to keep himself from sicking up. This was his life with Serena that was in danger and he would fight tooth and nail to keep her in his life.

He would not go back to morning what he lost He wanted to live and love and experience what life had to offer. He wanted to do that with Serena.

“I think it was someone else that said that,” Gambit said in between kisses. “For I do not recall those words,” He lied. Probably a good think too because he heard a warning in her words at that. “When your feeling better,” He said and then whispered the rest of what he was going to do to her, Enough so that her cheeks colored and her breath quickened though.

“I know your hurt, Colossus said he had hit you very hard. WIll you let me inspect the damage?” He asked.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:16 pm

Serena was nervous about knowing what her left breast looked like. However, she knew that she would need to know at some point. She finally consented and he locked the door before she let him pull up her top to look. Her left breast was greatly swollen and the flesh was badly bruised. It was extremely tender and painful. Her breast bone itself was probably bruised as well. Serena didn't look herself. She was too afraid to.

"How bad is it?"

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Post by Conleth on Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:27 pm

Gambit stealed himself, he had seen bad injuries both here and out in the field. But this was someone he loved and cared about. And he loved her breasts as well. He pulled up her shirt and shifted her bandage so he could see. He tilted his head as he looked at her and frowned

“Obviously you’re going to need to heal. Your bruised badly and swollen,” He said. He had the urge to squeeze it in his hand but the dangerous look in her eye made him behave himself. “Time, it what your going to needm” Gambit said.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:32 pm

Serena slowly nodded, but was still too nervous to look. She let him replace the bandage and she put her shirt back down. She was still extremely tired and he lay down on her bed beside her. She felt him gently put his arms around her, being careful to avoid her left breast. With his comforting arms around her she soon fell asleep.

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