Rogue quietly let herself out of the mansion and walked down the main drive, scuffing her feet in the snow. The atmosphere of relentless cheer had been getting to her for several days now, and now that Christmas had finally arrived it had got to the stage where if she didn't get out she'd end up draining the whole lot of them. Particularly Scott and Jean. A nice long walk had seemed like a good idea, but once she'd left the grounds of the mansion she wasn't sure where to go. Everywhere was deserted, the inhabitants of Bayville obviously all inside their over-decorated houses, celebrating for all they were worth. Rogue sighed. Better just see where her feet led her.
She hadn't got far when a familiar voice made her jump.
"De big happy family a bit too much for you, chère?" The insufferable Cajun was leaning against a tree, flipping a card over and over in his hand and smiling knowingly at her.
"Not that it's any of your business, but yes," Rogue growled in reply, not bothering to stop walking. "What are you doing out here? No bad guys to run errands for today?"
"Jus' felt like a walk," he replied, falling into step beside her, much to her annoyance. Rogue chose not to answer, stepping up her pace, and was unsurprised when he instantly sped up too.
They walked in silence for a while, not really paying attention to where they were going. Rogue found her irritation melting away the further they got from the mansion, despite the presence of one of her least favourite people...or perhaps because of it. She would never admit it to herself, but she was almost enjoying herself. The Cajun's silence was a welcome relief from the frenetic celebrations at the mansion, and it felt almost...companionable.
Eventually her manners reminded her that she ought to be making an effort at conversation, even if her companion was uninvited. "So what are you doing out here?" she asked; that, at least, she was genuinely curious about.
"Same as you, chère. Didn't fit in."
"I do so fit in!" Rogue snapped.
"If you say so," he said, and Rogue didn't need to look at him to know that he had that infuriating knowing smile on his face.
"I do! I just needed a break, that's all. Anyway, I thought you were well in with the bad guys, always hangin' round with them an' all."
"Not me. De others work for Magneto, but Gambit works for himself."
Rogue raised her eyebrows in surprise. "So...if it suited you better, you'd be on our side?"
He shrugged. "Maybe. It all depends on who's doin' the askin'." He grinned and winked at her, and she found that she had to look away. And she was blushing, damn it...she searched for a sharp response but found none, and they fell back into that companionable silence.
Eventually they found themselves back at the gates of the mansion, and Rogue made herself look back up at him. He was really rather handsome, she supposed, and almost nice when he wasn't being infuriating...and damn it, she was blushing again.
"Uh...Gambit, thanks for walking with me," she said, hesitating slightly over his name, and he smiled, looking genuinely pleased for a change.
"Don' mention it, chère. And to you - Remy."
"Oh...okay," she stumbled, cursing herself. Very slick, Rogue, very grown-up.
"Here," he said, holding out to her the card he'd been flipping between his fingers as they'd walked. "Keep dis, if y'want." She took it, and he grinned. "Was good to see you. Maybe see you aroun' sometime." He turned and walked away, his trenchcoat swirling around him.
"See ya," Rogue murmured, and looked down at the card in her hands. The Queen of Hearts...and she couldn't help smiling.