Disclaimer: The X-men and their world belongs to Marvel/Fox. No profit or copyright infringement is intended

NOTE: This story is Movie-verse AU

Quiet night


It was the smell that finally caught Warren's attention. He pulled off his glasses with a sigh and rubbed at his eyes. It was late - very late - and everyone else should be asleep. He could smell cigar smoke drifting in from his open window though. Logan was awake, again.

He wasn't terribly surprised. Warren had heard Logan earlier, incoherent noises - nightmares - and loud enough to carry through his floor. Logan's room was directly below his. Logan usually went onto the balcony to smoke after his nightmares. It was a habit Warren was becoming familiar with. Listening to Logan's unpleasant dreams while he worked, trying politely to ignore it, like everyone else.

Warren pushed away from his desk, securing his laptop out habit. He pushed the French windows wide and leaned out on the sill. A floor below, Logan leaned on the balcony balustrade, smoke curling past his tangled hair. Warren could see the tense, bunched muscles from here. Ignoring the man, and his problems, did not seem to be helping him. Warren swung out of his window and dropped down onto the balcony, cupping the air in his wings and landing lightly. Resettling his wings neatly on his back, he walked over to lean on the cold stone balustrade beside Logan.

The other man had heard him, of course, had probably heard him typing away at his keyboard but Logan didn't acknowledge him. Warren stared over the dark grounds while the clouds drifted past the half moon and his breath smoked in the fall air like the smoke from Logan's cigar.

"It's surprising how people discount the importance of breathing." Warren said after a moment, putting a light hand on Logan's. Logan's gaze dropped, he shifted, but let Warren take away the cigar.

"Ain't gonna get cancer." He rumbled softly.

"No, of course not." Warren said. "But that's not the point."

He shifted, not entirely sure this was the wisest decision he'd ever made, and moved behind Logan. He put his arms around the man's bare waist and leaned against his back. Logan was as solid as a mountain but just because Warren was light did not mean he was weak. "Lean back against me. And breathe."

After a tense moment, at about the time Warren figured he'd made a mistake, Logan did what he asked. The other man was shorter and - with a shudder - he let his head rest on Warren's shoulder. Warren sighed, breathed deep and felt Logan echo him.

"I love the cold weather." Warren murmured. "It feels like the upper air - cold and pure and unforgiving. Sometimes I fly above the cloud layer at night to listen to the geese call to each other as they fly south. They fly day and night this time of year. Calling back and forth so no one is left behind. Sometimes I want - to go with them."

"Have y'ever tried?"

Warren rested his cheek on the top of Logan's head. "Once, when I - had just learned to fly. I ended up in England. I was lucky. I don't really have the endurance to just - leave everything like that."

Logan sighed shakily. "Wish I could either leave it all or have it all - this halfway stuff is killin' me."

"It won't stay that way." Warren spread his hand over the warmth of Logan's stomach. Hard muscle and the soft rasp of body hair. He ran his hand up to press against the heavy chest, felt Logan draw a deep breath. "Just breathe. Tonight, just breathe."

Logan sighed. Warren stroked him, eyes half closed, their breathing fell into synch in a few moments and he could feel some of the tension leave Logan's body. He braced himself as Logan began to trust a little and let Warren carry some of his weight. Warren closed his eyes and savored the cold autumn air and the warmth of the man in his arms. It felt good.

The desire was there, between them, as it had been for some weeks now but that was not what had brought Warren out here - or not entirely. Yes, he'd wanted to touch Logan for some time but it was the realization that he could offer help that had brought him out here tonight. Warren had learned a long time ago that the chance to help came up rarely and should not be ignored. Watching Logan standing alone, he'd know he could help and he'd known how. The wind picked up and Warren brought a wing around to block it, reflexively sheltering Logan. He didn't mind the cold, Warren was well adapted to the bite of the upper atmosphere. Logan rolled his head to look at him - at his wings.

They stayed out there for some time, until Logan began to yawn and Warren couldn't help but echo him.

"Should go t' bed." Logan mumbled, but he didn't move.

"Come up to my room." Warren offered. "You can have my bed. I have to work, anyway. I'll - keep an eye on you - wake you if you have a nightmare."

"Alright." Logan said after a pause.

Warren flew back up to unlock his door and let Logan in. He went back to his desk and turned his computer back on. He'd meant what he said. Tonight was not the time to initiate anything and he had to work.

"The light from the screen - will it bother you?"

"Na." Logan gave him a quick glance then dropped his jeans, kicking them under the edge of Warren's bed. He wasn't wearing anything underneath. Logan stood for a moment, silent. Warren looked, there was no way he could not. He looked at the power there; the heavy ripple of muscle, the spill of dark hair across Logan's chest, down his belly, the dense pubic hair, the soft curve of Logan's sex. It was an offering - an invitation. He would take it - but not tonight.

Warren pulled out his glasses and slid them back up his nose. "Sleep tonight, Logan. There's plenty of time. I'll - watch over you tonight."

Logan shrugged and slid under the comforter. He rolled over until all Warren could see was the wide shoulders and the dark, tangled hair.

"Thanks." Logan said quietly and then softer still. "The bed smells like you."