St. John woke up that morning with the distinct impression that something was gonna go wrong.
It wasn't like he had a single psionically sensitive bone in his body--St. John, in fact, considered himself probably one of the most psionically deaf people at the Mansion. Which honestly saved him a lot of stress, so there was absolutely no reason he woke up on one of the most beautiful summer mornings Westchester had ever been blessed with, absolutely unshakably sure something was gonna go wrong. Not little wrong, like the cook forgot to put out bagels or someone forgot to make fried eggs. Not massive wrong, like some idiot messing with Rogue's mind or ole Magneto making a house call for recruiting or killing purposes. But wrong. Very, very wrong.
Bobby was still asleep and St. John brushed his teeth (good hygiene just couldn't go wrong, could it?), got his robe and absently walked out the door. Jubes and Kitty were due back sometimes today, and the class started tomorrow morning (what was advanced tactical anyway?), so he had a day in which he could do absolutely nothing of any kind of use. The very definition of a loafer. Perhaps spend his day staring at that picture of Bobby and reflect on the fact that somehow, he'd managed to not have sex (handjob by Bobby-boy himself aside on alcohol night) in roughly--shit, had it been five months? Whoa. For him, a period of abstinence indeed, and he really hadn't gone that long a dry spell since--well, since the first time he'd actually had sex and found out that this was definitely something fun to be doing with his free time.
Damn. This was ridiculous. He was going to have sex. Normal sex, with condoms and penetration on a bed and all the foreplay he could manage to get in. He wasn't even picky on who it was, because he would be *damned* if he was gonna put his sex life on hold waiting for Bobby to get a clue.
"I wanna know what happened, Jeanie. Now."
Oh my, now what the hell was that? St. John froze fifteen feet down the hall, surprised from his meandering thoughts on his sex life or lack thereof by Logan cornering Dr. Grey against the wall near the stairs. Self-preservation be damned--St. John jumped to the side and ducked behind one of the numerous potted plants that littered the upper floor since the guy with that weird plant-loving mutation (bastard got to Tiffany and damn it, I called dibs on her) had taken up residence.
Oh yeah. Well, he was thankful right now, he was sorry he'd lit the bastard on fire (by accident, of course), and Tiffani was boring anyway.
"Logan, you really should discuss this with Rogue--"
"I will. When I find out just how badly you managed to screw up. Got it? Make it easy, tell me what the fuck I wanna know."
Ooh. St. John settled back and peeked through the ferns to get a better view. Dr. Grey didn't look too comfortable--like she was hopin' someone would wander in and break the tension. Sorry, ma'am, I'm still sorta pissed by that C you gave me on my essay on genetic inheritance and really not too happy about the whole 'giving Rogue more issues' deal. So maybe you just forgive me for not leapin' to your defense, 'kay? Dr. Grey shook her head sharply, beginning to step away, and Logan caught her arm and spun her back--very neat trick, he wanted to watch that again in slo-mo and figure out how to manage it. Not violent, not hard, not even with any particular use of strength--yet there was Dr. Grey, stuck between Logan and the wall and lookin' mighty nervous. So she should.
But Rogue had said...
St. John didn't know very much about the man in front of him. He'd picked up Rogue in Canada for reasons unknown, though St. John, turning it over in his mind over the months he'd known Rogue, just couldn't believe it'd been for sex, attractive though she was. There were easier and less physically dangerous ways of getting laid. He'd stabbed Rogue through the chest, granted, but got her all fixed up afterward. Cool. Whatever the hell had happened on the Statue, which Rogue wouldn't discuss at all and which had led to that nice streak of white in her hair, Logan had been a part of it, and somehow saved her from whatever the hell Magneto had been trying to do. He had claws, a nasty temper, didn't like underwear (maybe he just liked the lack of underwear on women), apparently had a thing for raw meat (no judgement, St. John had a taste for sushi himself) and tended toward the idea that might makes right. Modified--he was an X-Man after all, at least nominally. And he was looking for his past. Okay, good to go. That seemed like a lot, but it wasn't much.
Rogue said he would take the little situation she'd been in badly. Which very well might be true. Thinking on the walls of the isolation chamber, Rogue's hands in bandages, the combat training they'd done--he had to admit, she could be right. She had him in her head after all and knew pretty intimately what he was gonna do under any given circumstance.
But--but, but, but--Rogue of all people knew, secrets didn't stay secrets. They just didn't. Eventually, he'd run someone to ground that would break when enough pressure was applied, and he got the feeling the last three days of quiet, where Logan didn't do anything at all but wander around looking intimidating and talking to Rogue, was along the lines of reconnaissance, checking out the lay of the land. Hiding what he was really doing.
"Somethin' happened. All of these little kids creep around her like she's gonna turn on them at a moment's notice--'cept those friends of hers, and she's doin' her damndest to keep them out of my way. She was bruised when I got here and she's right-handed and usin' her left for anything she has to get done, and shit, she's glued those fucking gloves on. Either she's gone a step up in bein' paranoid, or there's somethin' wrong."
Rogue hadn't told him Logan had great observational skills, though. Damn.
St. John liked deviousness, he really did. And he'd be so much more admiring if he wasn't absolutely sure that Logan had a prioritized mental list of everyone he was going to talk to about the situation, and that he, St. John, was on that list. Along with Bobby, Jubes, Kitty and Remy, and shit, Remy was so guilty, it wouldn't take any time at all to break him down. He'd confess before Logan even had to ask more than a few questions. Hell, he might confess when Logan looked at him wrong. Yes, Logan, I fucked her and almost screwed up her head again because I forgot all about that pesky skin issue.
If Logan had paternal feelings only for Rogue (which St. John, with three days of observation under his belt, sincerely doubted) that was bad enough. If Logan had other interests there (which St. John most definitely thought he did), then it would be a double hit--one, sex period, with Rogue, period; two, sex that got her landed in isolation and more bad dreams, and that whole mess was a completely different kettle of fish, so to speak.
"Jeanie, spit it out."
Ouch. Shit, there was no good way this could work. All Rogue needed was one Remy-specific dream where she spilled into New Orleans-style French and Logan wasn't stupid, he could put two and two together and end up with the proper number. And the proper perpetrator.
"Logan--" Dr. Grey had gotten one word out when the unthinkable happened.
Oh dear God. St. John spun on his knees, seeing Bobby emerge from their room--adorable, yes, still rubbing his eyes, blonde hair a mess. And wow, he really was letting it grow out, it reached almost below his eye now. Cute. Sexy, all rumpled. And so not welcome right now, even cute, sexy, sleepy, and rumpled.
And staring at him at his ducked position behind the plant. Oh fuck.
"Bobby?" Dr. Grey said it like a prayer. "I haven't seen him. Try the dining room." A pause. "Logan, I gotta go. We'll talk later." St. John didn't dare move, even breathe, hearing the sounds of her heels going down the hall and quickly to the stairs. A few moments of silence, then a low growl, and St. John motioned frantically at Bobby, dear God, run. Run. Go fast and quick or you, my friend, are next on the list, right this second.
"You might as well come out, kid. I could smell ya from over here."
Oh fucking hell. This so wasn't happening. He couldn't be talking to him.
"St. John, right? Marie's friend? Get the hell up."
St. John slowly stood up, trying to look as casual as possible while his knees shook and Bobby, being Bobby, stood in stunned silence a few feet away. Two things occurred to him--one, Logan had smelled him. Second, Logan couldn't actually see him behind that plant, so he'd been IDed by scent. Not a comforting thought.
"Logan. Right, sir."
A pause, and St. John began to slowly edge toward Bobby, keeping a wary eye on the man that was now leaning against the wall with a speculating look on his face--not very angry, which for some reason St. John interpreted as Bad. Capital B.
A slightly cocked head and Logan shifted from the wall, slowly approaching them like he was trying to gauge just how fast they could move if they got spooked. Frankly, St. John knew he was not only thoroughly spooked, he couldn't even get his feet to respond anymore. They were planted, quite firmly, on the hardwood floor, and didn't have the least interest in moving.
St. John knew he loved Rogue. Loved her dearly, the sister he'd never really wanted until right this second. Her eyes flashed around the scene, taking it in at a glance, and Logan was back against the wall, coolly marking him and Bobby with his eyes for future intimidation before giving her a smile.
Shit, that was a good smile. Not a hint of anything except good humor. Logan-type good humor.
"Hey." A pause and St. John watched as she assessed the situation, went through a mental list of options, and chose one, all in the space it took for St. John to get his feet to move toward the frozen (not literally, though God knew, that would have been next) Bobby. "You ready to go eat?"
"Sure." Without a glance at them, he turned toward her, and Rogue gave them a long look that stated clearly 'get out of sight now' which St. John was all too happy to do. His feet moved perfectly, and he got an arm around Bobby and was in the door before Rogue and Logan had even reached the stairs.
"Shit, Bobby, show some fucking sense!" Door closed, Logan and Rogue far gone, Bobby was standing perfectly still in the center of the room. "God, I was hiding--and he was--" Looking right at them, knew St. John's scent--hell, probably knew Bobby's too, they were marked men. They didn't need to worry about Remy spilling--no way in hell St. John was gonna hold up against all that sheer presence, there was just no way. "God, she's gotta tell him." Sinking down on his bed, he stared at the far wall.
He felt Bobby sit beside him, an arm going around his shoulders, squeezing gently.
"Yeah." A pause. "What do you think'll happen?"
What Rogue thought would happen--oh yeah, St. John could see this already and had half an idea of getting down to Remy (who was so wisely laying low right now) and telling him to run, run, run. Of course, not a solution. But hell, it sounded good, and maybe he and Bobby could go with him. He'd heard Greece was great this time of year
"No fucking clue."
Bobby shifted, pushing the blankets down, and then urged St. John back against the pillows, wrapping an arm around his waist. St. John shifted a little (hadn't he said no more sleeping with Bobby until he got a clue or something? Let's make that figurative now--sleep is okay, sex or any variation thereof is not) and turned, burying his head against Bobby's shoulder.
"This'll work out. Rogue'll take care of it." He sounded really, really sure about that. So sure that St. John decided, right there and then, that she would, that she had to. Period.
"Let's get some sleep. Nothing to do anyway. Everything'll be better later."
Bobby was giving *him* comfort. Geez. Not bad though. As Bobby pulled up the blankets around them, St. John decided that bed was just a good idea. Maybe stay all day. Maybe for the next month. A hand stroked his head gently and he shut his eyes, letting Bobby's cool body slowly send him off to sleep.