Starting A New Life (June 2012)

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Post by XslvrstarX on Thu Nov 14, 2019 9:11 pm

Serena and Gambit decided that they didn't want to stay in New Orleans. Serena was still healing and just wanted to get back to New York so she could relax and recover. Gambit had done what he needed to do in New Orleans and seemed happy to be able to leave his old life behind. They both agreed to never speak again about what had happened and to just start a new life together.

They flew first class back to New York, but instead of heading straight back up the mansion, Gambit asked Serena if they could stop at the Tower first before making their way back upstate. Serena was rather surprised by his request but agreed. From the airport, they drove over to the Tower and security let them in. As they were in the elevator heading up, Serena turned to Gambit to speak to him.

"Please, don't mention what happened in New Orleans or that I'm hurt. If my parents find out what happened they will not be happy."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 6:06 am

Gambit was not alright. What the Guild was, their motivations, their heart, everything had been instilled into Gambit since he was old enough to pick a pocket. He hadn’t wanted it to end that way. He and Charlotte had spent time. And Belor wasn’t always such a ruffian. The last vestiges of what he deemed a family, his family were now gone. And he nearly lost Serena, whom he considered the love of his life. Now he truly had no one. As he parked the car into the structure all of those emotions suddenly hit him all at once. Serena must have saw it because he felt her hand on his arm. Gambit put his hand over his face in embarrassment as his boy convulsed as he tried to stifle the sobs that hit him.

He was thankful Serena didn’t make a fuss over him. It would have increased how embarrassed he felt. She did make him lean over to kiss her though. And that did help. They remained there, in the car for a while and then they stepped into the elevator.

Logan kissed Natalya’s shoulder as she lay in front of him on the couch. Today had been one of those lazy days where, after their rigorous workout, Natalya seemed to just want to eat and veg out in front of the television. Ofcourse that required Logan. His touch, his very presence soothed her. She began to have migraines, terrible ones but the nightmares weren’t as frequent nor as terrible. What Logan had her doing was working but it also made her...clingy? She thought that was the world he had used. He never complained though. And she didn’t mind his hand up her shirt either.

Steve and Kate were actually helping Tony in the lab. Isabella had helped him earlier in the day. Bruce Banner had visited for a few hours earlier but he was gone now. He had left Tony with an odd puzzle. Bruce was given an object, a small tablet with odd runes all over it. It was about two hands high and wide and an inch thick. It felt like smooth stone but it was seemingly stronger than metal and no test he could do could discern its makeup or damage it in any way. Tony was setting up a cutting beam to remove a tiny sliver of the material and he asked Steve and Kate help him.

Isabella was in the office. The newly developed, Avenger ‘Relief’ foundation was just in its infancy and she had alot of work to do for it. The foundation was a charity that helped those hurt by the threats that the Avengers faced.

The elevator beeped and the door opened…

Logan removed his hand from Natalya’s right breast though she sighed in displeasure over that. He felt...good there behind her. And he had begun to turn her on as well. Oh well, she’s just attack him later. “Gambit? Serena!?” Logan said and he stepped toward them smiling. He looked at Serena and frowned suddenly. He smelled...something different. An odd, clean scent. THe smell of the antibiotic ointment and the medicated bandages and the sutures themselves. He didn’t know the smell was that but he noted that she did smell different. His smile returned as he hugged her then shook Gambit’s hand.

“Back for another round I see,” He said trying to ruffle Gambit’s feathers. Gambit tried to smile, tried to act natural as Serena had put it but he was having a difficult time of it.

“Well, New Orleans...was a bust,” He said simply. Logan chuckled as he looked into Gambit’s eyes. “Well you’re here now, come in, you guys want a beer? Something stronger?” He said as Natalya got up from the couch. Oddly, Gambit looked at Serena as if letting her decided what they wanted.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 8:44 am

Serena had not been back to the Tower or spoken to her parents since the night that she and Gambit had left after the rather disastrous visit. The things her mother had said had upset her and she was still upset by them, but, like Gambit, she wanted to make amends and start with a clean slate between them all. Clearly what had happened in New Orleans had affected Gambit, and Serena couldn't blame him for that. His entire life had just been turned upside down and she could tell that he felt a little lost and also alone. She didn't want him to feel alone, because he wasn't. No matter what happened, he had her. However, she hoped that her parents had had some time to think about everything and to perhaps give Gambit another chance. He wasn't the man they thought he was.

Serena smiled at Logan as he got up off the couch and walked over to them. She was worried that he might be able to tell that she had recently been in the hospital, but if he did he didn't say anything. She hugged him back and stood back to let him shake Gambit's hand. When Logan offered them something to drink she saw Gambit glance at her and seemed to want her to make a decision.

"Well, I'll just have some tea, but I'm sure Gambit wouldn't mind a beer," she said. Serena had been given some prescriptions before leaving the hospital and she couldn't have any alcohol while on them.

Isabella had heard the elevator ding, but she knew that the entire team was here in the Tower. She had switched on the security camera, wondering if perhaps Phil Coulson was here to visit Kate. What she saw though was Serena and Gambit. She sat back in her chair as memories of that terrible night came back to her. She activated her comm link to speak to Tony.

"Tony, Serena and Gambit are here."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:15 am

Tony lifted up his goggles just as Steve and Kate were about to set the beam amplifier in place. He and Isabella had had a long ‘discussion’ about Serena and Gambit and, though it took a bit of Isabella’s ‘special’ brand of convincing, he agreed to at least be neutral to the man. He would but at some point he’d have a talk with him. Serena was his only child and he would not have another so her safety. Her happiness was his concern even though Serena said it wasn’t.

Logan had invited everyone to sit at the table and he served some chips and salsa. He gave gambit a beer and an iced tea for Serena. It was crazy hot and humid out today though compared to New Orleans. New York was much cooler. Steve and Kate stepped up and moved around the table so they could give Serena a hug and Gambit a firm handshake. Logan got them beers as well and 2 more for himself and Natalya. And then 2 more when he saw Tony and Isabella come toward them.

Tony came around to hug her just before her mother did. He shook Gambit’s hand and gave him a neutral nod of a hello before he sat down. “Well that was a short trip, so either you did very well or very badly,” Tony asked them. Again Gambit only smiled, uncertain of what to say to the man, he did not want to say anything offensive to him by mistake. He almost looked at Serena again but decided to just answer.

“I did pretty good but Serena caught a bug and so we decided to cut the trip short,” he said. This was part of what they had agreed to say to everyone. Tony looked at Serena and noticed she did look a little wan, if only slightly.

“Well that doesn’t sound like much fun,” Logan said and Gambit shrugged. “I got one good poker game in though and cleared about 50k,” he said. “Wow,” Steve said.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:33 am

Kate had not known Serena her entire life like Steve and Logan had and so her feelings on Gambit were not affected by that kind of thinking. She rather liked Gambit. He seemed to make Serena happy and that was what ultimately mattered in her mind. There was something about the way they interacted that told her that this was not just a fling...they were in love. After everything that Serena had been through, Kate just wanted the girl to be happy. She deserved that. She had lost someone that she loved...as did Gambit. They understood each other in that way.

Kate hugged Serena and then stepped back so Steve could do the same. Natalya was friendly, but wasn't really a hugger and so she refrained from doing so. Serena was nervous when she saw her parents and was surprised when they hugged her, but was more surprised when her father didn't say anything snarky towards Gambit. He was trying and that said a lot to her. It meant that there was some hope here.

"You just missed Bruce," Isabella said to Serena. "He stopped by and was asking about you. He seemed very pleased that you were teaching science at the mansion. Perhaps some time you might invite him to come by and see you."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:11 am

“Bruce?” Gambit asked and looked at Serena. “Whose Bruce?” He asked with a hint of jealousy in his voice. He never heard of a Bruce and wondered if that was someone she knew before Evan. “Bruce Banner you dolt,” Logan said with a chuckle. “Uh...the big, green Hulk monster Bruce banner?” Gambit asked. “The very same,” Tony said. “Serena saw the Hulk up close and personal,” He said. Kate would feel Steve’s arm tighten around her when the subject of the Hulk came up.

“That woman stood in the path of him. The bravest thing I’ve ever heard of,” Logan said. “Serena was down and Isabella tried to protect her,” he said. Gambit gave Isabella a more scrutinizing look and granted her with a smile.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:21 am

Serena gently touched Gambit's leg discretely under the table when she felt him tense up next to her. She could hear the jealously in his voice and realized he had no idea who they were talking about. She gave him a little smile and then felt him relax when he discovered they were talking about Bruce Banner.

"Bruce lost control in the Tower, which had never happened before, and he attacked me. I tried using my powers on him but that only seemed to anger the Hulk even more. Mom tried to help me but then she was injured. If it hadn't been for Kate the Hulk may have killed us. Kate was able to use her powers to hold him in place and then inject him with a sedative. Bruce moved out of the Tower after that and I haven't seen him in a few years. Why did he stop by?"

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:33 am

Serena would see Tony and Isabella share a look. Steve and Kate both looked at Tony as well. She definitely saw something was going on. “We’ll..talk about it later kiddo,” Tony said to Serena. He didn’t look at Gambit but Serena would know that this was an obvious ‘trust’ issue. Something that they did not want to reveal in front of him.

Gambit reached for a chip but there were only broken ones left in the bowl. Natalya had been going at them like crazy since she sat down and without realizing it, ate them all. Gambit retracted his hand as Logan chuckled and stood up. “I’ll get more,” he said. Everyone looked at Natalya then just as she stuffed several into her mouth.

“What?” she asked with her mouth full and everyone snickered or chuckled at her. Her cheeks flushed with embarrassment. “Well, you’re welcome to stay as long as you like,” Tony said and looked at them both. “Very kind of you,” Gambit said feeling...awkward again. Serena’s hand on him helped though.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:37 am

After Logan got some more chips, they sat for a while longer though there was still some awkwardness at the table. Eventually, people started to get up. Serena got up and walked after her father and asked to speak to him in the hall. Gambit had gone to the restroom so he would not know what she was doing.

"Dad, please just talk to Gambit. He took a big risk in coming back here and he's honestly trying. He's a good, decent guy and I wish you would get to know him better. Please...just talk to him...for me. I don't ask much from you, but I'm asking for this."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:00 am

Tony looked at Serena and once again saw that she did look ill or just tired. But what she said...he wasn’t certain he could do that. “And what would I say Serena? He’ll have to earn my respect, not be granted that just because you love him. I invited him to stay as long as you want. And I agreed not to disparage him. If he wants to talk to me he will I imagine,” he said as he touched her forearm. The gesture was meant to be a consoling one but when she winced he frowned and then lifted up her sleeve.

“What the hell?” He said and his face grew concerned and angry. “Isabella!” Tony said loudly as he looked at Serena with more than a little suspicion in his eyes.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:01 pm

Serena tried to pull her arm away before her dad could look but it was too late. He had seen the stitches and now knew she had been to a hospital. Isabella heard Tony call for her and she came quickly. “What is it? What’s wrong?”

Serena looked at her. “Nothings wrong. I’m fine.”

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:14 pm

“Her arm...she’s been hurt,” Tony said and he didn’t buy that she was alright. He looked over at Gambit as he came out of the bathroom. “I think I will have a little ‘chat’ with Gambit now...Isabella, would you take Serena to the biobed please...you know, to just double check that cut,” he said but Serena would know the bed would find all of her cuts and her mother would see them.

“Gambit, come with me please, have you seen the lab? Serena asked me to show it to you,” he said quickly. Gambit was startled by the abruptness of the offer. He saw Serena’s worried look but did not know what it meant. “Uh, alright,” he said with a shrug and then stepped away with him.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:21 pm

Serena wanted to warn Gambit, but there wasn't any time. She just hoped that her father would go easy on him. She watched him as he walked away with her father towards the lab and she was forced to go down to the biobed with her mother. Her mother was unusually quiet as Serena laid down on the bed. Everything began to work and Serena watched her mother's face as Isabella realized that Serena had more cuts than just that one.

Isabella opened her mouth to say something but Serena cut her off. "Yes, something happened in New Orleans, but I don't want to talk about it. I'm fine Mom...I promise and Gambit is now free from his old life. Please just trust me on this."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:31 pm

“Trust you when you lied? Well that’s an odd request. You’ll forgive me if I decline,” She said as she crossed her arms over her breasts. “Out with it...ALL of it or you and Gambit can go back to the mansion and lie all you want. I didn’t raise you to avoid the truth Serena. Your father and I only have one daughter, one child, you. Can you blame us if all we want to do is protect her? I know Gambit makes you happy but asking you to life for him...that doesn’t sound much like someone I can approve of,” she said. Her voice had become softer as she went on and she sat on the bed next to her and held a worried look in her eyes.

Tony shut the lab doors then turned on Gambit.

“Alright, out with it Gambit, ALL of it,” Tony asked angrily. “Out...with what Tony?” he asked uncertain of what he really means. “That cut on Serena, how did it happen? It looks like a defensive wound to me!” He said with obvious irritation. Gambit just looked at Tony then sighed.

“Alright but this will take some time,” Gambit said. Tony ushered him to where there were several chairs. Once they sat Gambit began and he started from the beginning...

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:40 pm

Serena sighed as she looked at her mother. "Gambit didn't ask me to lie...I asked him to lie." She was quiet a moment before sighing again. "Alright, I will tell you what happened, but I need you to remember that I'm fine and that all of this is over."

After her mother agreed she started telling her everything that happened. Her mother just sat there quietly as she listened and did not interrupt Serena. When the story was finally over Serena looked at her mother.

"So, that's what happened. When Gambit asked if we could stop here first before returning to the mansion I asked him to lie about what happened in New Orleans because I didn't want you and Dad to get upset and to think badly of Gambit. He's a good guy with an incredible heart and he loves me and I love him. Now that this is all behind us we were hoping to get a fresh start with you and Dad. Gambit doesn't have any family anymore. He feelings lost and alone and I hate seeing him that way."

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 12:52 pm

“You could have just told us,” Isabella said. “Tony and I know about the Thieves and Assassins guild. We’ve faced several of their rejects. Gambit leaving them like he did was very dangerous, for himself and for those around him. But very courageous too,” she said. “If you weren’t already in love with him I’d still want you to come back to the tower and suggest you stay away from him but that’s not going to happen now. I feel for him, not having a family…” she said and then paused.

“Why don’t you two come and stay at the tower. It’s a good deal safer than the mansion I think and I remember Belor and Cassian. Their families will not retribution I suspect,” She said.

After Gambit had told Tony everything that had happened Tony had hit him in the mouth. Gambit didn’t hit him back and the two men seemed to come to an understanding with one another. Tony was still frosty towards Gambit but he gave him props for have the balls to just walk away...twice from some of the most dangerous people in the world. He brought out a bottle of very old scotch and as they talked further, they drank it together from the bottle.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 1:01 pm

Serena was relieved when her mother did not become overly upset about what had happened. The biobed had finished and she sat up and looked at her. "I will talk to him about it. I guess it will all depend on Dad and if he and Gambit can come to an understanding."

The two women spoke a little while longer before heading back up to the lab. When Serena and Isabella walked in the two women saw them drinking from a very old bottle of scotch. If her father was sharing expensive liquor like that with Gambit that was a good thing.

"So, looks like you two may have started getting along," Serena said with a little smile.

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Post by Conleth on Fri Nov 15, 2019 1:19 pm

Gambit’s cheeks were a little red as were Tony’s. And he had a little bit of blood on his face just below his mouth on the left side. He looked happy though. Maybe a bit too happy. Tony was half way out of it himself and the bottle was nearly gone.

“Oh...thheeere you arrreee!” Gambit said in slurred words. He got up and gave her a hug and a kiss. He tasted and smelled very much like scotch and he seemed very happy. “We werrrre just talking abouttttt youuu. If I knnneewww youuu …” he began and then Tony shooshed him and chuckled. “Oh thhhatts supposed to be a secret, ohhh righttt,” Gambit said and chuckled himself.

Tony looked at Isabella who saw the blood on Gambit’s face. “Oh don’t look at me like that dear, we’ve come to an understanding,” he said as he tried to get up. He wobbled then sat back down. “Ok, if you insist… I’ll just sit,” he said though no one had told him to.

Gambit hung on Serena as if his balance was off which it was. Tony offered the bottle to Isabella. “Oh...this is the goooddd stuff,” shhhh,” he said as he shushed himself as if it was another secret.

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Post by XslvrstarX on Fri Nov 15, 2019 1:30 pm

Serena could see that her father had hit Gambit, likely after Gambit told him what had happened in New Orleans, but he seemed alright and he and her Dad were getting along. She was curious, however, about what her father had told Gambit about her.

Isabella took the bottle from Tony after he offered it to her. She took a small sip and then put it away. "I think you two have had enough. Serena, why don't you take Gambit to your room and let him shower and perhaps lie down for a bit. Tony, I think you should lie down for a while as well in our room."

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