A Summer's Evening

Ororo Monroe was known for being serene, elegant, and logical. She'd gone through her punk phase and come out a respectable adult. She wiped the potting soil from her hands before she turned to glare at her brother, who'd given up on the idea of being an adult somewhere in his teens. "I will not be party to something this immature."

"Merde. Should never have let Henri re-age y'." He shook his head. "Anyways, it's already done been set up. Jus' warnin' y' to steer clear of the boy's landin'." He held up a bottle of white wine that had condensation gathering on the surface. "Y' come up t' the roof wit' ole Remy?"

She smiled. It was a beautiful summer's evening. "Yes, of course." He handed her the bottle. Then, he jumped up and through the open skylight. "There is a step-stool!" she called after him.

"Bah. Got t' keep m' hand in, non?"

She gathered the winds to her and floated herself out to join him on the hot shingles. He unpacked his messenger's bag; assembling the plastic wine glasses and handing her the corkscrew. The bag also revealed a sketchpad and with charcoals and oil pastels, bread, cheese, sliced carrots, celery, a tub of fresh tomatoes and basil from the back garden, and two white linen napkins from the formal dining room.

She poured the wine and helped herself to a tomato. It burst on her tongue with the stab of acid and the rich flavors of the earth it was grown in. She reclined on the roof. Her jeans were nearly as threadbare as her companion's. Her tee-shirt was three sizes too large, stolen from Bishop's laundry pile, but comfortable. She pulled her hair out of its ponytail and tossed the clip through the open window. Remy hummed a waltz as he tore off a piece of bread.

"And why is Rogue not up here with you?"

"Can't I jus' want t' spend time wit' my Stormy?" He pouted at her.


"She's establishin' her alibi wit' Robert."

Ororo laughed. "She assisted you with your trap? I thought you'd broken up again yesterday?" She was beginning to think Scott's idea of a Remy-Rogue relationship magnet on the refrigerator with one side that said "on" and one that said "off" like the dishwasher magnet was a good idea.

He blinked at her. "Not datin' got nothin' t' do wit' defendin' the South against snooty Northern bastards." Warren was the target then. Remy shrugged. "Besides, it's f' the best we just be friends f' awhile."

"Rogue is pursuing therapy with the professor? Wonderful."

"Didn't say that me."

"Of course not. And how does my second-favorite thief feel about that?"

"I ain't seen Yukio lurkin' so I can't say."

Ororo giggled at that. "Who is to say that she's not my favorite?"

"Y' so mean t' poor Remy."

"I've been thinking of cutting my hair. It was so much simpler to tend with the mohawk."

"Ain't near as impressive in the field," he pointed out. "Y' let me draw y' later?"

"You never need to ask." She poured out more wine for each of them.

They looked out over the grounds of the Mansion. The lights were on in the boathouse, which meant Scott and Jean were in residence, not lounging in the Mansion's den.

Bishop was checking the front gate. The rest of the land – the forest, the lake, the garden, the stables – was still except for the small creatures that lived there. There was no wind. The lake was like a mirror, reflecting the setting sun. Brilliant oranges, yellow, purples, and reds washed the clouds.

Ororo sipped her wine and nibbled at her cheese and bread. Remy crunched a carrot and stared out at the sunset as lazy as a contented cat. Her shoulders relaxed bit by bit, soothed by the warmth, the wine, and the company. Remy had held her through nightmares and tended to her wounds. To him she was not elegant and serene. She was instead, a teenager who's limbs didn't always fit the way they ought and who's sneakers were always dirty. No matter that she was physically older then he now, she was his declared little sister until the day his God or her Goddess told him differently in person.



"Don't y' go fallin' asleep out here. I ain't goin' t' carry y' inside."

"You'll simply call Rogue to do so."

"Mais, Bishop." He tapped a finger against his scruffy chin. She tugged at his bangs.

"If I fall asleep, wake me."

"Any storms t'night?"

She closed her eyes to sense the weather. "No, padnat."

"Then we jus' sleep out. S'warm enough."

She smiled and watched the sky change colors. She rested her empty glass on her stomach. She heard the rasp of charcoal on paper. She stayed still, used to playing model and meditating. Eventually, the noise stopped. She drifted with the clouds until she felt the glass plucked from her fingers. She didn't startle or even wake really.

Then, her brother was next to her, one arm draped over her waist. She fell asleep to the scent of spice and cigarette smoke. Even Warren's screams of outrage didn't wake her.


XM Library

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