Enemy Lines

an X-Men movieverse story

by dirty diana

dirtydiana78@hotmail.com


Bobby waited for forty-five minutes in the rain. He thought that John wasn't coming. He got soaked through, his tshirt and jeans, and all he could say when John finally showed up was, "you're late." Knowing that he sounded bitchy, and unable to stop himself.

"I got delayed," John answered, with no expression on his face.

"Busy destroying the world?"

John's eyes went dark and flat. He turned around, and walked away.

Bobby counted to ten before following him.

"I thought you weren't coming," he admits later, at the motel.

"Then you're an idiot," John answers, and drops the subject.

*

The dorm rooms at the school didn't have any locks on the doors, so they got used to doing it in the bathroom. That's where they do it now, stripping down and getting into the shower. John still likes the water way too warm. Bobby still likes to turn the waterdrops into snow, to piss him off. They argue for a bit, and then they fuck.

"John," Bobby says quietly as he comes.

John smiles, as the steam rises off pale skin. "Nobody calls me that anymore."

"No?"

"No. It's not my name."

"I'm not calling you Pyro."

"Whatever. Iceman."

*

The first time that John called, Bobby hung up on him.

"What the fuck is wrong with you?" John asked when he called back.

"There's nothing wrong with me. I'm not the one who left." Bobby hung up again.

John called back. Bobby took the train to Syracuse the next day.

When he got back, Logan was the first one who knew. Wrinkled his nose as he sniffed him, then opened his mouth to say something. Changed his mind.

He thought Rogue knew too, but he wasn't sure how. The professor definitely knew. Bobby wasn't going to worry about it.

*

The professor called Bobby into his office to tell him a story about humans dying, in different parts of the world. There were mutants involved, going crazy somehow.

Bobby listened for twenty minutes before he figured out that the professor wanted to know about John and Magneto. Bobby said, "why don't you just read my mind?"

"I would never do that without your permission," the professor said. "That would be a violation of trust."

That makes sense. Bobby knows the others don't trust him that much, these days. But he trusts the professor. 

And he trusts the train to Syracuse.

*

"Do you think it's going to happen?" Bobby asks John in the dark.

"Do I think what's going to happen?" John's awake. He never falls asleep first, too restless.

"The war. Between mutants and humans."

"It's happening already."

"Thanks to your friend."

"He's not my friend," John says, and rolls onto him, his weight heavy on Bobby's chest. "Who's going to stop it? You?"

"Maybe."

"Yeah?" John reaches a hand underneath him, gripping his waist, pinching hard. It hurts. Bobby's reminded of the only time they fought, no powers, just angry awkward punches in the quad.

Neither of them won.

*

When they got back to school, Rogue felt sorry for him for a bit. Weeks, even. Then she got bored.

"Bobby, are you going to mope around for ever? I mean, I miss him too. But..."

Bobby hadn't realised that he'd been moping around. He said, "Rogue."

"Yeah, Bobby."

"Maybe I shouldn't be your boyfriend anymore."

She looked at him for a long time. Then said, "okay."

He still hasn't told John. John's going to ask why he couldn't do that a year ago. Bobby's going to say that he has no idea.

Anyway Rogue got over it pretty fast. 

*
The matchbook covers at the motel are black, printed with the image of a pine tree. John is playing with the matches, striking them and watching them burn down to the ends. Then he makes the fire dance gracefully across the tabletop, and extinguish itself in the glass ashtray.

Bobby climbs into his lap and says, "where's your lighter?"

"I lost it." 

"You lost it?" Bobby repeats in disbelief.

"You heard me."

He strikes another match. That's when Bobby notices that the skin on his knuckles is red and cut, like from fighting someone. And up the length of bare arms, deep purple bruises, like from losing.

"John," Bobby says, "you <i>lost</i> your lighter? Or somebody took it from you?"

"Mystique's holding it for me till I get back," John answers, voice flat.

It's only then that it occurs to Bobby that he's not the only one who's not supposed to be here.

*

The professor's the one that gave him the talk. He didn't want to, Bobby thinks, but they had a meeting and he got elected.

"I certainly can't make you do anything," the professor said.

No, you certainly can't, Bobby thinks. John's voice inside his head.

"But I would hope that you'll make the right choices when the time comes."

He's thinking about choices, as he watches John put the matchbooks in his pocket.

"You could come back," Bobby says.

"You could leave," John answers. Kisses him.

"I can't." 

"Exactly." John punctuates the word by slamming the door as he leaves.

*

~fin.

Everybody thinks that I'm the fool
But they don't get any love from you
~Tracy Chapman

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