Everything John knows about love, he learned from his parents.
He knows not to wait every day outside the girl's school, offering her a scarf when it's cold, an umbrella when it's raining. Instead he hides Bobby's gloves during the first snowfall of winter. When Bobby asks if he's seen them, he makes a snorting noise, and continues reading Jack Kerouac. Bobby finally shrugs and leaves. He'll survive. He's got ice powers, surely he's used to being cold.
He knows not to stare as though he's enamoured with her, hardly glancing away from her petite 5.0" frame. Bobby is tall, and John only looks at him when it's time to laugh at him for being so stupid. Thankfully this is often; John's mind has gotten good at picking up shreds of embarrassment or shame. He can always find the strings back to the original reason, and bring it up to rub it in.
He knows not to come up from behind at a pub, and wrap his huge arms around her, chuckling as she's struggling, like it's a joke, and pretending not to notice her relief when he lets go. John and Bobby wrestle sometimes, but it's always mutual. In fact, Bobby tends to start things, finally getting annoyed enough by John's snide remarks to come back at him. Bobby's smart, but he's not pithy, and he always resorts to violence. Pinning and punching, not creepy hugs, occur in the Drake-Allerdyce bedroom.
He knows not to sit in on a lab class she's taking, and move the metal stool too close beside her, close enough to smell her hair. He sits in the middle-back of every classroom, every class. Stands in the middle-back of the crush of people in Cyclops' car repair class. If Bobby is next to him, it's purely his choice. Usually he isn't, he generally doesn't want to be associated with the stream of rude remarks from John.
He knows not to invite her to his apartment at a bar one Saturday night, and get angry when she says no. He knows not to ask the next weekend, but be prepared this time, and slip white pills into her drink. John doesn't know where to buy drugs in New York. He could ask Piotr, but he doesn't want to know. He's done with alcohol and pot, was done the day he set fire to a tree while he was trying to light a pipe.
He knows not to claim that her pregnancy is from their romance, that she wanted it, and that if she gets an abortion, everyone will hate her. John's pro-choice, pro-queer, pro- anything people want to do with their own bodies. That's where the line is drawn; if it hurts someone else it should hurt the first person double, but your body is your body. He wouldn't be surprised if half the girls here have had abortions, some had to survive on the streets a long time.
He knows not to beat the wife and the child, telling them he'd stop when they loved him. He might wrestle with Bobby, but he'd never hit him. He'd never hit anyone. If someone is very bad, like Charlie Manson, you should use the death penalty, but never let the hatred linger. John hates jails. It seems like that's all they do, hate people until they claim they've changed, and then let them free.
He knows not to finally snap, and dress his wife in her cheap wedding gown, and handcuff her to the bed, locking the door, and telling the small child that Mommy will come out when she's ready. Marriage is a sham, just people forcing themselves together because they falsely believe it's better than being alone. He's glad he's gay and can't marry, he hopes the laws never change.
He knows not to leave bobby-pins in the bathroom, so the child finally teaches himself to pick a lock, so he can bring Mommy the food she was yelling for, while Daddy is asleep on the couch. He'd only had an old doughnut, it was hard and half crumbled. Half his life he'd spent eating good square meals, meant to make him fat and lazy and compliant. For a year he ate fast food, and sometimes anything half eaten and tossed out. At Xavier's he eats salads. John likes to make huge batches, using multiple heads of lettuce, and draining an entire bottle of ranch dressing. The crystal punch bowl full of greens sits on the counter like a peace offering, anyone can take some. He hopes it makes up for some of the bitchy comments that he can't apologise for.
He knows to incinerate the body, not leave it to rot on the blue bedspread. It's no wonder he received the power of fire, five years later. It's no wonder the first time the flame shot out of the Bic like a bullet, all the memories came back, and he passed out like he had five years prior. When he woke up, he ran, lest Dad think John was mad at him. Bad things happened when his dad didn't feel loved.