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Cold

Remy is not always kind and forgiving

 

Remy was crouched on the edge of the porch roof, head low in deceptive despair. He wasn't sad; he was listening .

"Hankster," Bobby's voice, very gentle and almost directly below Remy's feet. "Hey, Hank - why don't you come on in. You're missing DS9, you know."

"I have no interest in indulging in pointless amusement," Hank low rumble was heavy with misery, sad as Remy had ever heard it and hidden in the fall of his unkempt hair, he smiled.

"Hey," Bobby's footsteps and the creaking of the porch. Then the soft rustle of fabric and fur; Remy could imagine Bobby's arm slung affectionately over as much of Hank's huge shoulders as possible. His smile faltered as a pang of something - guilt? sympathy? envy? - shot through him. It felt like a blow, a wound as cruel as watching Rogue fly away in the cold Antarctic sky. Watching the steel door spin closed on him… The memory served him well; Remy's faltering expression hardened, cold and sharp as the taste of ice in your mouth when that was all to eat.

"C'mon big guy -" Bobby's voice changed. "Screw the damn Cajun anyway. You made a mistake, we all did. And you apologized and if he can't handle that - it's not your fault, Hank. The asshole's got no heart."

"Two different body parts entirely," Hank mumbled.

"Yeah, well - LeBeau's one and not the other. So come on, you aren't doing anyone any good suffering too. Conservation of misery or something - c'mon Hank. Come inside."

Remy heard Hank stand with a long, rolling sigh and followed the creaking boards with his mind's eye as Bobby's comfort drew Hank from his despondent guilt. He lit a cigarette, the cheap Russian tabacco harsh and bitter in his mouth. Bobby - Bobby had to go.

A few days later, in the coldest hour before dawn, Remy sat huddled on his bed, shaking. He was freezing cold. Too cold to stay still, too cold to sleep. He had to do something to keep the cold at bay. It crept up in the dark, heavy and cold and green as emeralds, crushing his breath, stealing feeling from his fingers - and his heart. He squeezed his fingers together, clutching at his hair. He barely recognized himself, nothing felt right and he couldn't stand to think of it another minute. Half dressed, Remy scrambled for his door.

He collapsed outside of Bobby's door, suddenly unable to go on. Leaning against the door, the wood bitter on his skin, Remy panted for air. Everything was hazy and distant. He let his eyes flutter shut and barely caught himself as the door was yanked open.

"Jubilee - fuck!" Bobby broke off as Remy collapsed against his shins. "What the hell are you doing?"

"N-nothin' homme," Remy struggled to his knees and pressed his hands to his face. What was he doing here? "Remy be gone in a minute - he knows not welcome here."

"You -" Bobby's voice choked to a halt. Remy struggled weakly when Bobby hauled him to his feet and into his room, door slamming shut and cutting off his escape. Hugging himself, Remy stared warily at Bobby. He couldn't help but remember Bobby's power was ice - cold - and he could hardly stand to be in the same room with him. There was a reason he was here though, it was on the tip of his tongue. He just needed the right moment to set it off. Like a bomb, like the charge he no longer had.

"You - what the hell is wrong with you?"

"Hank!" Remy blurted, then caught his breath. The name had been choking him, waiting like an ambush for just the right moment. Now, late atnight, with Bobby half-asleep and angry, was the right moment.

Bobby's face went from angry to worried. "What about Hank, like you even care, damn you."

"Remy try to care," he muttered and that was too close to the truth. He'd tried to care and gotten stabbed in the back for it. He hugged himself and avoided Bobby's eyes. He didn't hate Bobby, the eternal fifteen-year old, but he had to be parted from Hank. That was why he was here. "Want to take his apology but not - " he shivered exaggeratedly "-not like before. Cher - sorry, sorry, but not like before."

Bobby crouched down in front of him and looked like he wanted to shake the words out. Remy chewed on his lip, feeling revenge warming his heart. He only had to set a small, small seed and it would grow. His lids fluttered, he could see it, a small green thread in the red of Bobby's devotion. Doubt, mistrust. And he had the seed.

"What the hell are you talking about?"

"Hank, he like you, Ouai," Remy muttered, rocking. "More dan he want. More dan he say. And - "

Bobby flushed, something between hope and shame caught on his face. Everyone knew Remy was an empath, he knew what people felt. It was the reason why Rogue had left him on the ice - or so she claimed and Remy never denied.

"Remy not be - be de whipping boy no more. He not play Bobby games wid Hank no more." His voice broke. "Remy a slut but not doin dat no more."

Bobby sat on his heels for several moments, Remy waited. Bobby wasn't the brightest light in the X-men and it took him awhile to make up a story to go with Remy's fragmentary words.

"He didn't -"

Remy didn't look at him.

"Hank wouldn't use you as a substitute," Bobby protested, springing up to pace in his worn Batman pj bottoms. Remy measured the body, a man not a boy any longer but Hank still saw a boy and Bobby wanted - wanted to be a man for him. "He wouldn’t use anyone!"

"He don want to hurt you," Remy whispered. "Hank loves you cher."

Bobby stood with his back to Remy, fists clenched. "He wouldn't hurt me. He knows that. He has to know that."

Using love to hurt, Remy's eyes narrowed. Wasn't that what it was for? Love like a knife and not quite lies to lay at the feet of the most caring man in the mansion. One who'd left him there, who'd left him to die. And when Bobby confronted Hank - and Remy knew he would - there'd be a flash of guilt and Hank would not deny Remy. Because even good men get drunk and imagine things. Things they want and things they don't and things they might have done. Hank had never laid a hand on Remy but he thought he had. Maybe that's why Hank hadn't looked for him in Antarctica, to erase that memory.

Remy shook his head, he didn't want to understand why he'd been betrayed, he just wanted to make them feel what he did - make all of them feel what he did. Cold. "Ouai, Hank never hurt you."

Leaving unsaid who else he might hurt to make that so.

TBC