Double Take

He heard the official news in passing, whispers in the mansion hallways that somehow always found their way into his ear. He shuffled his cards, made sense of the chaos, and grew angry.

He could rip them all over the coals for the way they put her up on a pedestal where no one could reach her but Logan and from which she couldn't climb down. They talked to her, looked at her, but none of them would be with her, no matter how starved and lonely those emerald eyes became. They treated her like a friend with their words, but somehow left out all the things that mattered. They didn't hug her, kept their distance. Others hated her, viciously, for those three weeks of freedom from her mutation--curse—she bought with the Cure. Her boyfriend sought comfort elsewhere, and she let him, even encouraged it.

He didn't know her, not even her name. Just Rogue, thank ya, to all that passed in and out of the revolving door of the X-Men. He didn't know what made her smile, what made her laugh. But he knew that somewhere inside that poisoned, lovely skin beat the heart of a woman.

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