Logan glared back, sitting on Scott’s bed. “I saw you two in the Danger Room. He was all over you.”
“He was hugging me. He was worried about me. We’re friends. We’ve been friends since high school.”
“You were fuck buddies not that long ago.”
“Not that long ago? Okay, maybe from where you stand at 160 years old or whatever, it’s not that long ago. For those of us who live a normal life span – which would include both Warren and me – it was a long time ago. Years ago, and it barely lasted two minutes. It was after you and I had broken up, if you remember. At the same time you were spending your nights fucking truckers and you wouldn’t even take my calls.”
“Now we’re gonna fight about that?”
“You bring up ancient history and I’m the one fighting about it?”
“You haven’t been walking in on me and any truckers, have you? I even told you I wouldn’t train Billy if it bothers you that I did him that time.” He shook his head in disgust. “And I don’t know why the fuck we’re talking about this anyway, and not about you and Worthington practically jerking each other off in the Danger Room this afternoon.”
“We weren’t doing anything! Warren’s straight, for Chrissakes!”
“Yeah? How does that work? Like all those ‘straight’ guys who used to pay you for blow jobs?”
Scott made a visible effort to calm down, and continued. “He’d never been with a man; he’s secure enough not to be completely freaked out by the idea of trying it. He wanted to see what it was like, I wanted to get off. We did it a few times and we stopped. That’s it.”
“He’s been with a succession of women since – you can’t have missed that, there’s a different one around every few weeks. He’s never shown any interest in sex with me – or any other man – since he’s come back to the team. I have no interest in doing it with him. Okay, so Warren and I fucked a few times. Why is that such a big deal to you that you can’t stop bugging me about it five years later?”
“You were alone with him all evening, Scott. I’ve been waiting for you here. You show up hours after you’re ‘meeting with Warren’ in your office. What am I supposed to think you were doing all that time?”
“You’re the mutant with the heightened senses. Do I smell like I’ve been having sex?”
There was a long pause before he answered. “No.”
Figuring that was as close to an apology that he was likely to receive, Scott came back to bed and put his arms around Logan. “I haven’t had sex with anybody but you for a long time,” he said. “I haven’t even wanted to. I’m hot for you. I think we’re damned lucky we’re still hot for each other after all these years. I don’t want to do it with anyone else. If I did do it, I’d tell you. I told you that time with Simon, didn’t I?” Logan nodded. “Why are you so fucking possessive that you can’t believe me? I don’t lie to you, Logan.”
“I know. I just... I don’t know what it is. I feel like you’re mine and he’s trying to move in. You’re mine, Scott.”
Scott shook his head. “You don’t own me. It’s a sex game. A really hot one. I don’t even know why. I was never into that kind of stuff before you, but it goes straight to my cock when you talk like that. But it’s still pretend.”
“I know that.”
“I don’t do it with anyone else because I choose not to. I choose us. I don’t think it would be good for us if I were having sex elsewhere. I feel like we’d lose something. But I’d tell you the truth, no matter what.”
“I know.” Logan leaned back against the headboard and Scott laid his head on his lover’s belly. Logan absentmindedly stroked his hair and continued to speak. “I don’t want to do it with anybody else, either. Well, it’s not that I don’t want to – sometimes I do. Mostly women. But I don’t do it.”
“Is that hard for you? I know you’re not like me. I know you miss sex with women.”
“Not that much. I like women, I won’t deny it. But it’s different with you, better. And I think it’s partly because it’s only you I’m doing. I feel like it would fuck everything up, like we’d lose something, like you said, if I fucked somebody else – man or woman. So even when I want to I don’t do anything with anybody else. The nightmares, the memories – sometimes it’s too much for me to take. Nobody can help me like you do, nobody ever could.” He took Scott’s hand, spoke softly. “You’re the one I want, Scott. When I’m in a bad way, well nothing makes it better like sticking my cock in your mouth or up your ass.”
Scott laughed. “You’re so romantically eloquent; you should write sonnets or something.”
Logan snorted. “I mean it, though.”
“I know. I’m not mocking the sentiment. It just sounded funny the way it came out.” Scott sat up and thought a little more. “I love you, Logan. I want to help you any way I can. If sex helps, well great – the best kind of therapy. Fun for both of us.” They smiled at each other. “You’ve got to get over this, though. Last year you were sure I was doing it with Jean-Paul. Now you’re back to being jealous of Warren. I’m not fucking anybody but you. If that changes, I’ll tell you. I don’t think it will. Can’t you just trust me? I trust you with my life, you know, lots of times. You can trust me.”
“That’s different. I even trust Worthington in combat. But yeah, I believe you. I’ll try and remember how much I trust you next time I come in and he’s got his hands all over you.”
“What do you have against him, anyway?”
“He’s an arrogant bastard. He thinks he owns the world.” He thought a little more. “He’s a good fighter, though.”
“He is. And you thought I was an arrogant bastard who thinks he owns the world when you first met me, didn’t you?” Logan didn’t say anything. “I thought you were an undisciplined self-centered prick. People are more than what they seem at first glance.” Logan just grunted. “I didn’t have sex with him. All we did was talk.” He bent his head back down to Logan’s belly, tongue flicking at Logan’s navel briefly.
“You made your point, Cyclops. I believe you.”
“That’s not my point,” Scott replied, moving his head lower. “We’ve established I don’t smell like I’ve been having sex. Do I smell like I want it?”
“You smell as horny as a tomcat.”
“Glad to hear that heightened sense of smell still works.” And then he stopped talking, because his mouth was full.
Jean caught up with Scott the next day, during his poetry class. She sat in the back of the room for the last fifteen minutes, listening and smiling.
“You’re so good at that,” she said after the students had all left. “I could listen to you talk about poetry all day.” Then, voice changing from fondly appreciative to businesslike, “But I need to talk physician temps instead.”
“I’m sorry. I know I was supposed to get back to you on that. I haven’t even reviewed their resumes yet.” He looked sheepish. “But really, I don’t need to interview them. What do I know about medicine?”
“I thought you’d want to talk to them, just to get a sense of who would fit in here. They’re all three very qualified. They’re all interested in filling in while I’m on leave, and perhaps working here part-time afterwards.”
“Good. We could use another doctor.”
“I agree. Really, Scott – any of them would be fine. And I’ll be here. I can certainly supervise, do some work.”
“Poor you. Not much of a maternity leave when you don’t even get to leave.”
She laughed. “Nah, I like it that way. I want to keep my hand in. So, should I just choose?”
“If you don’t mind. Are any of them mutants?” She shook her head. “Well, then which ever one you think would be best.”
“I’ll go with Abramov, then. She’s very personable, has good credentials, and seems really interested in mutant medicine.”
“Settled, then. Thanks. I should meet her, I suppose.”
“I’ll bring her in next week and talk details. I’ll make sure to introduce her to you.” She looked at him closely. “Scott, are you okay? Warren tells me you found some upsetting entries in Charles’s journals.”
"God knows,” he said, “I was always aware that Charles had a kind of cold-blooded streak. How else could he have put together a combat team of kids like us?”
She nodded her agreement. “Sometimes he was so focused on his vision, so concerned for our people as a whole, he had trouble seeing individual people.”
“Yeah, I know.”
“It’s you who got him over that, Scott. You tempered his drive with compassion and concern for the kids. If it weren’t for you we wouldn’t have this school. We’d still be sending kids off to mortal combat instead of helping them to think about and discuss Sylvia Plath’s thrill at cutting her thumb instead of an onion.”
Scott shrugged. “He talks about me like I’m a thing - a tool. A better model than the others, who ran away without completing their training. If there was one thing I’ve been sure of all of this time, it’s that Charles Xavier loved me. I was willing to do anything for him, anything to deserve that love. Now, well I think it was all a sham. I was just a means to an end.”
She shook her head. “That’s not true. Look, Scott, I know he loved you. I’m a telepath. I knew before I even met you, when Charles first came to recruit me. He radiated it – affection, pride, devotion.” She put her hand on his arm. “When Charles came to my house, he bowled my mother over. Well, you know how he was – compelling, charismatic, utterly persuasive. She was ready to sign me up that day. I was drawn to Charles’s vision, his plan, at least enough to visit this place and see if I could live here. But mostly I agreed to come here because of you. Who was this boy who could inspire such love in someone like Charles Xavier? I had to know.”
I’m more and more convinced I’ve made the right choice. His adjustment is bound to be difficult, but he’s much more motivated than the others. He began training immediately, with a determination I’ve never seen before, and extraordinary physical stamina, as well. No matter how grueling the regimen, he never complains.
I got off to an awkward start with him. He assumed I was bringing him here for sexual purposes! I didn’t anticipate that, although I ought to have. In the past year no one has sought him for anything else. I was quite flustered at the time, but I made clear that that was not my intent. We’ve said no more about his year of prostitution. I think he’ll likely forget about it over time, if his mind and body are kept occupied. I am doing my best to do both.
As well adapted as he is to being without vision, it has to be a challenge to be in a completely new environment. Yet he met the challenge resolutely. Within days he had carefully mapped out the whole property in his head. He learned Braille faster than anyone I’ve ever taught and he’s quickly catching up academically, along with acquiring combat skills.
He’s had a complete physical from a mutant friendly doctor. He was undernourished but otherwise generally healthy, and he’s thriving on regular meals and regular exercise. Luckily he’s HIV- and I certainly expect he won’t be engaging in any activities that could change that status. There’s some minor brain damage that registers on the EEG, and he reports an accident as a child, with a blow to the head and severe concussion, so perhaps that was the cause. It’s hard to know what effects there are. He scores extremely well on IQ and other aptitude tests, as well as motor skills and hand/eye coordination, so there’s no obvious sequelae. I wonder, though, if his inability to control the optic blasts is related to the brain damage. He manifested over a year ago, yet has absolutely no control yet. This is atypical, in my experience.
It’s key that I find a way for him to control his powers. I hope to be able to do so with telepathic means, but I’m not sure I’ll succeed, particularly if the damage to his brain is in the mutation control area, as I fear. I’m trying a different approach now, looking for some transparent or translucent substance that can absorb or block the energy of the optic blasts. If so, I’ll make glasses from it.
For now, it’s important that he open his eyes from time to time so the muscles in his eyelids don’t atrophy. I’ve been taking him to remote locations to do so. If he looks up and nothing is above us, the blasts just dissipate.
He was terrified to try the first time. We were at the house in Vermont, and I took him outside and told him to look up and open his eyes. As eager as he is to please me, he could not bring himself to do it. His lids just clenched tight, almost against his will. It was affecting to see. He wants so much to hurt no one. Eventually, with some slight mind control persuasion, he relaxed enough to open his eyes.
He was profoundly grateful, could not stop thanking me. It was almost as if I’d given him the gift of sight. I intend to take him to the ocean next. Off season, I can find somewhere where there will be few people and we can go to a remote stretch of beach. What joy he’ll feel to look at the ocean! It will be good for his training, too.
This is the sixth chapter in a ten-part series. The entire series is being archived here .