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The super hero gig is almost as old as time itself. There’s always been some pressing darkness ready to consume the world at any moment... and there’s always been the stubborn motherfuckers who are determined to stand in its way.

You live long enough- you get to see the really good heroes come up.

Their names forever written in the history books.

The few doing the shit that needs to be done.

Really only in the current century is when the media started picking it up.

What with the failed reality tv shows, and the long ass interviews with Stark and Richards.... superheroes kinda become a pretty public thing.

Which is okay for teams like the Avengers- sure.

...But... X-men have a little more on the line.

Sure- Cap can fuck someone up if he really tried.

But mutants? No one can fuck it up like mutants.

And to be honest, we’re not always in control.

Sometimes- we can’t help it.

And given the fact that most powers manifest in teenagers... well... shit can get messy.

So while the X-men are in the public eye, most everyone has some kind of mask or some bullshit on.

We’ve spent close to twenty years trying to fight various registrations- tooth and nail.

We’ve protected the future, we’ve been to the past, we’ve been to space, other dimensions, Hell, Heaven, to the very end of all human comprehension and back again. All in the hopes of making a better future.

I know, when I say that it’s easy to think of some kind of propaganda.

But... I’ve seen it. That future.

And I want to do my best to ensure that it comes about.

Leaving something for generations to come.

Keeping the hope alive. Keeping the dream alive.

Holding the principles of all those who have laid down everything to keep the world safe.

You get to be a senior X-man and you see a lot of friends come and go.

It’s actually a small running joke amongst some superhero circles the X-men never really stay dead for long.

You know because we’re either god level powered individuals, regenerators, or possessed by a cosmic space bird.

We like to joke about it but for some reason we’ve yet to understand... it’s kinda a recurring theme.

While several of us have pulled this off- it doesn’t make the process of readjusting to the land of the living any easier for us. Really because no one’s trip to the afterlife matches up with anyone else’s.

Is there a heaven? Is there a hell? Is there really ANYTHING that happens?

Guess it kinda depends 1) on who you’re asking and 2)on what their ties to certain super natural or cosmic beings is.

A lot of our relations to certain beings are circumstantial- which means that some of us are just naturally going to get off easier than others.

It’s always a surprise when one of our teammates comes back... but not really an unexpected one.

Someone once joked that instead of burying teammates we should invest in some kind of freezer- ya know, keep the bodies fresh until they’re eventually called upon again.

The relative ease of coming back to life is kinda subject to a few little things. Just a few minor technicalities that you run into when you’ve pulled one over on the great beyond.

The first being, how long have you been dead? This is hard to measure if you come back with no one around. It’s always just really fucking awkward to walk to the nearest populated area and ask what year it is. The question is either exclusive asked by the newly resurrected, time travelers... or schizophrenics who’ve escaped a mental facility. So people freak out a little bit when you ask it.

The point is- coming back to life depends on a few little stipulations. The major ones being- like I said- how long have you been dead?
Under a year? Yea- you’ll probably be okay.
Under two years? Little more fucked up- but you can make it work fairly easy.
Three years and up? Nah. You’re fucked. Completely fucked. You missed out on too much politics. The world’s probably been in danger about ten times now! And most surely (if you’re an X-man at least) you’ve been in some capacity cloned or impersonated by some form of alien/shapeshifter.

It’s really important for you figure out what’s happened and how to integrate back to your team in as little time as possible. Shit moves fast in the hero world. You’ve kinda gotta move just as fast or faster to keep up.

The second set of questions you’ll have to ask yourself is where you are. If you don’t find out your location- it’s a huge pain in the ass.

And... you’re not buried with tech or a map. Also, some people are a little sentimental and think you’d like to be buried with your family or in your home country- stuff like that.

I mean- we don’t keep corpses at the institute. At least not any more.

So you’ve got to figure out how long you’ve been dead, what’s happened while you’ve been gone, where you are, and then- the hard part. Proving that you are not an alien shapeshifter or another sort of imposter. That you haven’t been possessed. That you have all of your memories. That you haven’t been converted into some kind of sleeper agent for some fucked up government agent or another.

I mean, really- the list is fucking endless.

And if someone who’s not playing for the morally upright team you align yourself with finds your body? Fuck- there’s no telling what will happen. Or what they’ll do.

So you’re already faced with the fact that you’ve been dragged back to life, thrown forward a few years, woken up in a strange place- and ON TOP of that, you may find yourselves captured by a bunch of dickheads who have their own ‘wonderful’ plans for you to enact.

I mean, fuck. That shit is exhausting.

Beyond exhausting.

But, once you go through all that bullshit, you’re welcomed back onto the team, given a room (if your old one is not available) and you can start fixing the mess that is your interpersonal relationships.

Cause, no matter how long you’ve been ‘under’, people move on.

When you’re topside again? Nothing is really promised.

Your lady? Man? Whoever you went in the ground loving? They have every right to move on.
And while it hurts like fuck- you kinda just gotta accept it.

Luckily, most friendships the team forms are strong and pretty much unbreakable.

So while you may lose your lover- you’ve still got friends.

So it’s not a complete loss.

This last trip under was a real fucking doozy.

I don’t think I’ve ever had such a hard time coming back.

Granted- I’ve never really died like that before.

So much shit has gone on that it’s honestly not worth mentioning.

When the smoke cleared- I wasn’t the only recent resurrection.

Summers. Jeanie.

It has been a weird fucking time to be alive.

We all just kinda decided to not bring up death, resurrection, or anything that’s happened in the last year or so.

I think it’s safe to say that the gag order is pretty much team wide.
Not a single X- man (or woman) is bringing the shit up. We’re burying it out of sheer stubbornness.

After all, it’s fucking hard to admit that you don’t know what the fuck is going on.

We had tests run on us, psych evaluations, weeks spent under observation... and then we were cleared to return home.

The school was in Central Park, but was moved, once again, to a more desirable removed location.

No one seemed to mind.

Not me, anyway.

I don’t really deal with cities that well.

Too loud, too many scents, too many people.

I enjoy being able to sit on back lawn and here some nature.

Which is what I’m doing now.

Laying out back underneath a large tree- kinda dozing off, to be honest.

My mind tends to wander here lately.

I don’t really see a need to worry over it, though.

It doesn’t happen during missions so... ?

I inhale deeply, feeling the sun on my face, the slight breeze in the air, the smell of distant people... actually... someone is getting closer.

I sit up, and shield my eyes from the sun- squinting as someone approaches.

“There you are.” Laura says, waving slightly.

I can’t help but smile. “Looking for me long?” 

The day is hot and clear. So much so, that pretty much everyone is wearing some sort of summer wear. I never got without jeans- but I managed to find a clean undershirt to make that work. 

If I was so inclined, I could ask Ro or Drake to try and cool it down a little... but the scent of heat in the air is somewhat pleasant and to be honest, I’m too fucking lazy to go in a track them down. 

She shakes her head. “Scott figured you might be out here.” She stands over me- hands in the pockets of her jean shorts.

“Where’s your sister?” I ask, scanning the yard and not seeing the girl.

Laura glances back to the house. “I think trying to give Jonathan a bath.” She says. “And not having much luck.”

I chuckle lowly and glance up at her. “So... you have a reason for this visit or...?” I pause. “Not that it’s not nice to see you.” I have to remember to not be surly with the girls. They can take a lot, but if Laura thinks she’s not wanted- she’ll vanish. I don’t want to do anything that makes her fell unwanted in any sense. 

Laura looks down- almost shyly. “It’s...” She inhales, and clears her throat. “It’s about-“

Oh fuck. 

Here we go. 

The current Howlett family drama. 

I hold a hand up. “Don’t want to talk about it.” That’s really all I should have to say. 

Nothings going to change- why bring it up? 

“Logan,” She groans.

“Nope.” I lay back down, closing my eyes.

“It’s just... somethings not right.” She says.

“It’s Creed.” I snort. “Nothing is right with him.”

“It just seems that Dak-“

I hold a hand up. “Don’t want to hear his name.” I say. “If he’s with Creed- then he’s a traitor.”

“He’s not-“

“If he’s with Creed,” I repeat, “He is a traitor. He’s betrayed his family. Traitors are not worth mentioning.”

Laura huffs a little. “Look- his communication has gotten.. worrisome.” She says. “He doesn’t sound like himself.” The last is said quietly.

“Oh he doesn’t like himself, huh? And you know what he’s supposed to sound like?” I chuckle harshly. “The boy’s a liar. Nothing he’s ever told you is true. The sooner you accept it-“

“That’s not true.” She growls. “I have no doubt that Sabertooth has somehow tricked him. Daken is very vulnerable right now- if someone-“

“Oh he’s ‘vulnerable’ now is he?” I growl.

“Yes.” Laura snaps. “He is. He has been for a while.”

“He looked fine to me.” I say. “Ya know- when he put a sword through my chest?”

“That’s my point- why was he using a sword?” Laura asks.

I shrug. “Boy’s been taught several weapons in his life. Probably wanted to be dramatic.”

Laura inhales deeply. “Daken and I are almost always in contact.” She says. “I used to hear from him several times a day. In the past week, I’ve only heard form him twice. Something is wrong.”

“Yea- his fucking head.” I growl. “He’s sided with Creed. Boy made his choice. Let it go. Focus on something else. He’s basically dead to us now.”

“He is not!” Laura snaps.

I shrug again. “Boy’s got to face the consequence of his shitty decision making-“

“Creed is large. Loud. Crude. Physical. Prone to violence...” Laura says sharply. “Does that sound like anyone else to you?”

I roll my eyes. “Nope.”

“Yes, it does.” Laura growls. “Don’t be stubborn, Logan. I know you see the similarities. Everyone does. You’d be a fool not to.” 

Fuck. Yes- okay. There are some similarities. But... really- all that means is that the kid’s too stupid to learn. 

That sounds like something he needs to figure out on his own. 

I can’t baby him while he continues to make shitty decision after shitty decision. 

Honestly- though it looks good on paper... that ain’t parenting. 

I watch Laura watching me. Waiting for my response. 

I exhale slowly and say, “Okay- sure, I agree- technically. There are some similarities that could be ‘troublesome’.” I make quotations around the word ‘troublesome’. 

“Some?” She questions. 

“What do you want me to say, hmm? He’s over seventy years old. If the boy hasn’t learned how to live his life by now and decides to go after these evil bastards to try to control him or whatever the fuck he uses them for- that’s on him.” I say. “Maybe it’s his fetish. Who knows with him?” 

“The similarities between Creed and Romulus are too great to dismiss.” Laura says sternly. 

“Yea, I get that you could see it that way.” I say. “But... it’s the boys choice.” 

“But I don’t think it is his choice, Logan.” She says, kinda almost pulling on heart strings. Any other conversation about any other topic- I’d most definitely cave. 

“It’s completely his choice.” I argue. “Boy seems to prefer men who will not respect him. Until he gets some self respect, he can’t expect to find it from these scum balls.” 

 “But do you know what that means?” Laura presses. ”The reason he would go after these ‘slime-ball’ creeps?  I mean...” she swallows a little loudly. “I mean...”

I watch her face. She’s obviously upset about this.

“Why would he be choosing these types of men?” She asks.  

“Yea- you’re right. It does mean something.” I chuckle. “It means... the boys got a type.”

Laura pinches the bridge of her nose. “Look- I’m not coming to you for help.” She says. “You won’t give it- I get that. You’re too stubborn or too proud- maybe both.”

I close my eyes. “Then what can I do for you, kiddo?”

She’s quiet for a second. “Watch Gabby.” She says. “I have information based off of Daken’s last few messages. I want to go check on him.”

“Might wanna call ahead.” I say, somewhat sourly. “Make sure he and Creed aren’t fucking.”

Laura is quite audibly offended by that remark. “How can you be so crude about your own son?”

“What? That’s what it takes to keep Creed entertained.” I murmur.

“And you would know....?”

“Because I’ve seen the man’s partners over the years. Daken’s probably too exhausted to text you- you know? If he’s having to be the ‘partner’ to fucking Creed- kids probably on his knees-“

“Logan!” She snarls.

I shrug. “Point is- call ahead. Kid’s probably ‘occupied’ and Creed don’t like being interrupted.”

Laura sighs. “Please just watch Gabby.” She says. “I know you’re not going to help, so just please- keep an eye on her.”

I nod. “Sure thing. Just... be careful.”

I crack my eyes to see her nodding. “Anything you want me to tell him?” She asks.

“Well, he’s a man so he can’t get knocked up. So... no.”

“So if he was your daughter you’d tell him to be careful with Sabertooth?” She asks.

“Don’t turn this into something it ain’t.” I growl. “I’m just saying that if he were a chick, I’d tell him to use protection. Since he isn’t- we don’t have to worry about it and I really ain’t got shit to say to him. He’s a traitor. Pure and simple. You go there- you’re gonna get hurt. I can’t stop you, so I won’t. But just know- he’s going to be an ungrateful little asshole. He always is. He doesn’t give a fuck about this family, so we shouldn’t give a fuck about him.”

Laura watches me carefully. “I can’t believe you actually think that.” She says quietly.

“He doesn’t give me any reason to think otherwise.” I say simply.

Laura pauses. “You don’t know him at all- do you?”

I shrug. “And who’s fault is that?”

Laura glances down at me. “Both of yours.” She turns back to the house. “Please watch Gabby, I’ll return in a few days.”

I sit up and watch her disappear towards the garage.

What does she want me to say?

The boy’s a brat.

A selfish, childish, ungrateful, brat.

He’s honestly lucky his momma never got to see him.

Poor Itsu would be turning in her fucking grave if she knew what her darling boy had grown into.

I take a deep sigh and stand to my feet. No need in sulking out here.

Might as well head in a try to get something accomplished.

The walk back into the house is peaceful. I walk through the garden to the back door, watching a few bamfs run and scamper around- chasing each other through the garden for a moment before disappearing into sulfuric smoke.

Thought I told the Elf to corral these little bastards.

Or ya know- banish them to somewhere else.

The kids seem to like them though so... the little rats stay.

I enter the back of the house, hearing several conversations stop at once.

I glance over to see a assorted variety of x-men and students alike looking at me.

I walk up the closest group- Drake, Summers, and Frost- and nod. “What’s going on?”

The three look between each other.

“Well?”

Frost clears her throat. “It’s your youngest.” She says, raising a perfectly sculpted, probably costs more than reasonable to do, eyebrow. Frost has been dressing more ‘conservative’ lately- but she’s still built like a brick shit house. I mean- come on, I’m a pretty disciplined guy- but even I get caught up staring. Today she’s wearing boy shirts and a corset- come on- hows any hot blooded male not supposed to stare?

“Oh yea?”

Emma nods. “She and her ‘pet’ have made a gigantic mess of the living room.”

I find myself smirking. “Oh yea?” I repeat.

Emma glares at me. “She’s refusing to clean it.”

“Don’t know what you want me to do about it.” I say smugly.

Emma glares at Summers- obviously trying to get him to intervene.

Summers is dressed in that ugly ass training uniform we somehow insist on keeping no matter where the school is located or who’s running it. 

Drake is the only one dressed ‘normally’. Jeans and tank. 
I find it weird that the gay guy is the one who’s also the most conscious when dressing. 
Fuck maybe that’s homophobic. 
I don’t know this shit. 

I’ll have to work on it. 

Opinions on shit change over the centuries and I’ve lived through a few. 
I mean- honestly, I don’t give a fuck what people do in bed. 

I just have a way of talking that some people would find ‘offensive’. 
Like I said- I’m working on it. 

Had to get a little better when dealing with Daken, actually. Funny how things like that work. 

“Gabby says she will not clean the mess... until someone puts her on the phone-“

“With Laura?” I cut him off. “Funny. She just left.”

“With Daken.” Bobby interrupts. “Gabby is refusing to control Jonathan in any capacity until she talks to Daken.”

My slightly goodish mood is dashed entirely.

“Oh really?” I say coldly.

The three nod.

“Ain’t gonna happen.” I say, turning around. “Let the little fucker destroy the room- he’ll tire himself out.”

“Logan-“

“Shut it, Summers.” I growl, turning away. “I’ll be upstairs if anyone needs me.”

“Logan-“ Bobby takes a step towards me.

“You want to help?” I growl, over my shoulder. “You call him. Maybe he’ll not be a little bitch if you’re involved.”

I march up the stairs to my room, ignoring literally everyone else and swing the door open, slamming it behind me.

Boy ran off.
Boy made his own decision.

I offered him a home.
I offered him a way out.

Did he take it?
No. No he didn’t.

He’s childish, immature, bratty, self absorbed, and honestly? I just think the kid’s evil.

I think that the time to save him is well past.

I just gotta admit that the kid of the woman I loved is a piece of shit.
I wanted the fucking world for him and every single fucking chance I GAVE HIM he blew.

I get it- the kid’s got issues.

If I leave him alone for about fifty years- maybe we can revisit the topic.

Kid ran off with Creed- of all people.

I know he’s got ‘daddy issues’ but that is where I draw the fucking line.

The boy made his choice.
And I’ve made mine.

And regardless of what my daughters or my friends seem to think- I’m gonna fucking stick by it.

Daken needs structure- he always has.
If this is what I have to do to get through to him... then... I gotta do it. And I’m gonna do it. Well. Thoroughly. When he’s ready to be civil- we can fucking talk.

As of right now? Boy deserves whatever he’s got himself into.

I’m not dropping everything to try and fix a person who doesn’t want to be fixed.

It’s a waste of my time and his.

In fact, I should be putting all my effort into making his sister’s see that they really don’t want to contact him, either.

I’m not being a shitty parent- no. I used to think that.

I’m being the decent parent of a shitty child.

The boy needs help- yea. But he ain’t gonna get it from me. I’ve tried.

I think it’s time for some nuclear strength tough love.

In the end- the kid will come out better for it.
Until then, I just gotta keep pushing.

I walk to my bed, the black comforter is torn from the surface and lays crumbled up on the floor. I sit on the plain gray sheets and stare at the ceiling.

This is what I have to do.

And even knowing that- knowing the approach I have to take- it fucking hurts.
It will always hurt.

But... the boy’s gotta learn.
And if this is the only way to teach him... then I gotta do it.

I owe him that much.