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Checks and Balances

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They work on a system of fire and ice; when John gets a little cocky, goes a little crazy with the exhibitionism; Bobby and Marie have kept him in. Sometimes, literally, as Marie found out time and time again (and having to do it in front of Bobby’s family was not something she’d want to repeat, and a part of her mind reminded her that she wouldn’t have to. Not with John gone.) 

And the startling reality of the situation hit them when they (when she) thought about it. He was gone. There was a void in their situation now. Who would they have to reign in now? Bobby had too much control and what was she supposed to do?

And she wants to think of simpler times. 

She can remember many nights in their bedrooms after she had first arrived and gotten to know them a little better. There had been an uncomfortable silence that had at first pervaded between the three of them. It was a silence that had quickly turned into a familiar comfortable environment. Marie had taken the first step one night. 

One gloved hand had rested atop Bobby’s, and had gently coaxed it onto John’s shoulder. She then moved it down just a little so it was resting atop his chest. From there, it had moved all over, one glove over one hand, and Marie thought that maybe she could feel it because Bobby was feeling it (if she believed it enough).

But now he was gone, and there was no fire to cool. 

She thinks back to the museum, before it all started (as far as she is concerned). She remembers before the cafeteria, before all the madness and the insanity (and losing John) started. 

While the other students were off discovering the museum, they had ducked off to a quiet hallway to further explore each other. The walls were wood (she remembered quite distinctly; the precious few of the last good memories she had of him). 

She had given a little giggle and Marie covered her mouth to hold back a louder laugh as they secretly ducked around one last corner and away from the crowds in the halls of the museum. Bobby used his hands first to pin John to the wall and siphoned out some of the heated rage that was present only seconds ago in him as he had fidgeted with his lighter, nearly begging to know when they could get away. Marie was always a step back, just in John's line of sight over Bobby’s shoulder. 

She called John an exhibitionist once (in her room). He had merely flicked his lighter open and lit a giant fire in his fireplace (a little too enthusiastically, she recalled, because Bobby’s shirt had almost sparked). 

But Bobby knows how to use his power just as well as John knows how to flaunt his.

As ice surrounded his wrists and bound him to the wall, a devious smirk began to light up on John's face as wisps of smoke rose from the ice as it began to melt from the heat of his body.

“Finally,” he hissed with a tiny laugh as he squirmed (a natural reaction, Bobby knew). 

"Well, Rogue, what should I do?" Bobby asked, as he took a step back from John, but never turned to look back at Marie. Her face twisted into a devious and playful smile (and John smirked right back at her), and she walked up to John’s side. Her hand ghosted along his cheek (not quite touching) and John could feel the air that gently breezed past his skin. He gave a little snarl as his eyes went wild at the feeling of being trapped (without the ability to touch, and oh god, how maddening it must be for her, he thought), and then she stepped back. 

"Let one hand free," she murmured, and resumed her position behind Bobby. She giggled again at the sheer sense of how immoral they were, and how wrong the situation was. Her eyes lit up with delight as Bobby helped to loosen the ice around John’s right hand. John grasped first at Bobby’s wrist and held it tightly before loosening his grip and beginning a search through his pockets for his lighter (no doubt, Marie and Bobby thought at once). 

But she didn’t want it that way.

She took a step forward, and with one gloved hand, she stopped his hand from searching and turned to Bobby. “Kiss him,” she ordered, almost wondering if he would do it (again). 

Bobby turned to John, and paused (as though he were considering the order, but really it was to drive John mad, and John knew very damn well what he was doing). He paused only for a moment. John’s eyes burned with desire and fire, and his lips curled up in a little smile at her order.

“Come on,” he urged. “You heard your girlfriend.” 

Bobby pressed his body against John’s, and the wood made a tiny echoing sound at the force of two bodies pressed against it. Marie bounced a little with anticipation and delight as she walked her covered fingers up John’s arm and all the way to the tip of his head and around so that her arm was draped around his shoulders (still loosely pinned against the wall by Bobby’s body). 

Bobby tilted his head to the side a little, and John’s free hand grasped at the other glove that Marie wore, intertwining their fingers as Bobby nipped at John’s lips with his teeth a little before kissing him. And Marie watched (and felt envy course through her). She kept her eyes focused on the kissing, and the tiny ice particles that formed on the film of John’s lips. 

“Show-off,” John murmured through the mesh of lips and tongues and teeth, and Marie closed her eyes briefly to imagine she was the one being kissed (but only for a moment) before Bobby lets one hand go of John, and brings Marie into the close contact the two had been embracing. John shivered a little at the decreasing temperature that graced him through his lips.

“Light my fire then,” Bobby prodded him, and with a cool tongue, he ran it down John’s neck (forcing him to shiver) and goosebumps appeared along his forearms. John shook his head and his hands began to wind their way under Bobby’s shirt, and flat palms worked their way up and down his torso as Marie watched and her eyes fluttered shut as many memories of the nights before them came back to her. They hadn’t gone that far yet.

Yet.

As far as she was concerned (as far as John was concerned), they would get there eventually (as far as Bobby was concerned). It was only a matter of time. 

Bobby momentarily lost control of his power, and all the coolness of his touch went spinning out into the air. John surged forward (one hand still clasped onto Marie’s) and kissed Bobby to instil a little bit of heat in the boy and take over the dominance of the situation. 

He sucked on Bobby’s tongue and bit at the inner lip, and every time he upped the intensity of the kiss, and coaxed it into being something a little hotter, he would clasp at Marie’s hand a little tighter.

Her hand had begun to hurt.

“Ow,” she complained vocally, and the two boys parted to look apologetically at her. She blinked after a moment and realized that they had stopped on account of her. A tiny smile grew on her face as she took both her hands, and ran one down John’s spine, and let the other one caress Bobby’s face. “Did you boys stop on account of me?”

“You said ‘ow’,” John reminded her.

“I…thought you might be hurt,” Bobby admitted. She was actually surprised by the level of kindness they bestowed on her (that no one had given her before) and gently, she turned them so that they stood in a triangle (John’s other wrist now completely free from the ice restraint Bobby had given him earlier). 

“I’m fine,” she promised. She leaned in slightly, and stopped herself when she was inches away from Bobby’s lips, and kept her eyes open as his hand ran down her back, and that simple look of desire graced his face. She then turned and did the same to John (who didn’t run his hand down her back, but she heard the irritated flicking of his lighter). 

She pulled away a little, and looked at both the boys in front of her and then nodded slowly. “Go on,” she urged. Before her eyes, they slowly found each other again in a meeting of lips, and she felt chills run down her spine, as she herself shivered (before she realized that Bobby’s hand was still there, and that it seemed to be a natural reaction for him to use his powers when getting kissed). 

When finally they pulled away from each other they all wore a smile of content on their face. The tight triangle their bodies had formed hadn’t shifted. Their breathing was a little more ragged than usual and Marie’s face was positively radiant with bouncing energy (and the same went for the boys). 

“Hungry, anyone?” John posed the question with a flick of his lighter as he intensely studied the flame.

“Stay out of trouble,” Bobby reminded him as they traipsed off to the cafeteria (Marie leading them, as she always did).

But now they (and Marie has to remind herself that it’s now only a two-we, and now a three-we) were flying back in silence and grief. They had lost Jean, and they had lost John. There was no raging fire to keep controlled now. Bobby felt numb (actually numb, and he wondered if he was inflicting the ice he controlled on himself now). 

And somewhere deep inside of her, Marie shivered at the thought of being without their fire.