BY : Nemain
Category: X-Men - Animated Series (all) > General
Dragon prints: 5214
Disclaimer: I do not own X-Men Evolution, or any of the characters from it. I make no money from from the writing of this story.


Standard Disclaimers Apply


A/N Foxfeather continues to kick ass…. J Thanks to InterNutter and T.C. for being
archivey. And beaucoups of thanks to who who supported and reviewed all this
stuff I write—makes a girl feel all sparkley!





chemical Kitty had inhaled made her woozy and nauseated. She was not sure how long she had been
asleep after weeping herself dry when Mystique left, but she knew it was well
into the evening by how hungry she felt.
Her muscles and limbs ached from cold and the hard metal surfaces she
had been subjected to. Her own clothes
had been replaced with something resembling hospital scrubs, her shoes missing
as well. Paily, ly, Kitty rose to her
feet and limped to the door, her hips screaming for mercy. Knowing it was an exercise in futility, she
tried the latch anyway and was not surprised to find herself sealed in the
chamber. What can it hurt? I have to try…If they put a collar on
me…Hell. I don’t want to think of
it. I’ll try over here… Kitty forced her sore legs to carry her
across the room from the door, to the flat gray wall that she assumed opened to
the outside, judging by the light coming in from the narrow murder hole where
the ceiling met the wall. Gathering her
wits, Kitty let her hand pass through the wall and was surprised to feel water,
cold and heavy, swirling around her fingers.
She stifled a yelp and drew her hand in, brining a healthy slosh of the
liquid with her. The fuck…? She considered her options: it could have
been a drain pipe, a sewage conduit, the water main for wherever she was…Kitty
tentatively sniffed at her fingers and found that they smelled briney. Closing her eyes against possible disgust,
she licked her digits. Salt water! A sudden vertigo washed over her then,
making her breath come in short, harsh gasps.
I’m underwater! Oh, God! I’m under water! The room felt close then, like she was being
suffocated. I’m going to drown! Magneto will open the wall and I’ll drown! God, how far down am I? Her gaze returned to where she had put her
hand through, at shoulder-height. The
water had felt heavy, cold…she knew that she was far down. The light along the wall blinked and she
realized it was not daylight but a false shine, like that of an aquarium
bulb. Appropriate… Kitty felt her stomach cramp, attempting to
heave it’s nonexistent contents, and staggered under the pain. Gotta sit…getting shaky. She sank back onto the cold metal platform
attached to the wall and closed her eyes, pressing the webbing between her
thumb and forefinger in a method Kurt taught her to relieve pain. Kurt will find me…he has to…he’ll bring
Logan and the Professor and everyone and they’ll find me. Where am I, anyway?

watched the monitor with an almost serene smile on her face. “She’s tested her boundaries. I think she’ll be docile now. She thinks there is no means of escape.”

“We can’t
be sure of that.” Magneto did not
bother to look up from his reading.
“We’ll her her sit for a while.
Let her wonder.”

long? The sooner begun…” Mystique leaned back against the monitor
panel, crossing her arms across her blue middle.

wait…I’ll know when the time is right.
How’s Ruth this evening?” He
finally spared his cohort a glance, belying the faint remains of familial
concern her felt for the girl in question.

“She’s the
same. Barley verbal, sore…Her skull fracture is producing massive headaches so
I’ve been avoiding her.” Mystique
failed to add that she had a part in the headaches, cuffing the girl when she
began asking questions about surfacing memories.

“Hmmm. How is she getting her food, if you’re
avoiding her?” He rose then, folding
the newspaper into a neat rectangle and tucking it under his arm.

“She’s not

sure…take her a tray. If she dies of
starvation she’ll be of no use to us, will she?” The man known as Magneto narrowed his eyes at the blue woman. “And give her proper food. If I find that you have spit in it or the
like, I will be very displeased.”

snorted. “What do you take me for,
Eric? I’m an adult.”

“Then act
like one and quit avoiding the child.”
With that, he turned his back to her and strode from the room, the doors
opening ahead of him and slamming in Mystique’s piqued face.

Kitty had
taken to pacing the length of her cell (for that was what she decided it was,
rather than a room), muttering to herself in agitation. “Okay.
I know Mystique is here, or will be if she’s gone now. I know Magneto is involved somehow…this has
his stink all over it. Great. Now I sound like Logan…damn. Mystique…Magneto…what other M words do I
know?” She was well aware that she was
babbling but was quite sure that, if she stopped, she would scream. “I know murder, which is what I’ll do to one
or both of them, I know malevolent, which is how I feel, I know mourning, which
is over…” Kitty stopped when she
reached a wall, pressing her forehead against it’s cool, dull gleam. “I know I’m not going to make it out of here
easily. Maybe not at all.” This year sucks ass. I wonder what Kurt’s doing now… The
thought of her boyfriend made Kitty’s heart lurch painfully. Does anyone know that I’m gone? God, how long have I been gone? I think it’s been hours, but it might only
be five o’clock or something…I could be anywhere there’s salt water…there’s
thousands of miles of coast and if they have a plane like the
Blackbird…Fuck. Kitty pounded her
head gently against the wall and forbid the tears rising in her eyes to
fall. Keep calm, Kitty…keep
calm. What would Logan do? Hmmm.
Okay, scratch that. What would Storm do? Damn it. Can’t go that
route, either. Fuck me….

“You have
need of me…” The calm voice surprised
Kitty, making her spin around so quickly that she lost her balance on the slick

hell?” Shiva.

worry—you’re not hallucinating. You
fell asleep several minutes ago. You
just think you’re awake.” He smiled
beatifically and held out his hand to her, motioning that she should come to
him. “Don’t be frightened, child.”

“I don’t
understand this…I’m Jewish. I’m not
Hindu…” Kitty accepted the strangeness of the situation, some part of her brain
relieved that she was getting rest no matter how surreal the dreams it

The man/god
sighed, his smile only wavering slightly.
“Like I told you before…”

“I know, I
know…Jungian archetype.”[1] Kitty waved a dismissive hand. She felt lighter now that she realized this
part of her day, at least, was a dream.
“So I’m not really underwater, am I?”

“I’m afraid
you are. You’ve only been dreaming
since you sat down near the wall. Right
after you…ahem…knocked your head against it for a few moments.” Shiva shifted and rose, seeming both old and
young to Kitty’s eyes. “You have need
of me,” he repeated. “I can help.”

“How? I mean…well, how?” Kitty felt hazy now and had a niggling feeling that she would
leave this dream soon.

“Do you
know what I am?”

Shiva. God of everything in
Hinduism.” She fought wakefulness,
struggling to keep Shiva solid. “What
does that have to do with me?”

where am I coming from?” He sounded
kindly exasperated, putting her in mind of Beast.

“My…subconscious?” Big words bad for sleep…

the time is right, look within. I’ll be
there and I’ll help you.” There was a
dull scraping noise and both turned to face the door. When Kitty looked back, he was gone.

awake? Good.” Magneto’s voice erased the last traces of sleep from Kitty’s
eyes. Choking on a startled gasp as reality
hit her full force, she scooted as far away as she could, huddling in the
corner furthest from the man. Magneto,
for his part, merely stood still in the doorway, a half-smile on his face while
his eyes followed her movements.

“Why am I
here?” Kitty finally managed, damning the tremor in her voice.

“You, my
child, are very special. Very
important. You,” he advanced into the
cell, his hands clasped across his stomach, “are the final test of my newest

“Wh…what?” Kitty felt all of her earlier calm slip
away, leaving her a scared little girl crying for the mother who never really
loved her in the first place.

“Do you
remember me from your childhood? I’ve
been curious about that ever since I first realized who you are…” The sudden change of topic made Kitty’s head
spin. “You’ve grown quite a bit…you
look so much like your grandmother.”

Kitty tried
to rise but found that her burgeoning fear was too great, her knees weak and
shaking. “What?” was all she could

“You don’t
remember Uncle Eric? Hmmm. Of course, I was closer to Ruth’s family,
knowing her grandfather as I did. We go
way back, he and I. Oh, Kitty, I know
all sorts of dirty little secrets about the Prydes and Simonovs.”

closed her eyes and shook her head violently.
Rumors buzzed like flies in any family, but the ones she had heard
growing up were horrific, things no child should hear let alone an adult. “No…you lie.”

“No, Kitty,
why would I lie to someone who’s diaper I once changed?” Magento’s lips curled self-mockingly.

The idea of
Magneto touching a baby, let alone her, and changing a diaper, made a dark
laugh rise in Kitty’s throat, strangling her breath and making her gag. “Please…please…”

what? Please let you go? Please leave
you alone? All impossible, I’m
afraid.” He clicked his tongue in mild
disapproval. “Tell me, how is your
family taking word of Ruth’s death? I
understand there was a mix-up, that the hospital had the body cremated before
sending it home to her parents…quite a shock.”

“What?” Kitty’s head snapped up, eyes suddenly
blazing with angry fire. “What do you
know about Ruth?”

that’s a name soon to be part of your past…”
Magneto squatted down to peer into Kitty’s red eyes. “How little you know, child, and how much
you will learn…”


wanted to kill. In fact, he had never
felt more like killing in his life. He
wanted to feel hot blood spurting between his fingers, bone crunching under his
heel…The only problem was the lack of a victim. He had picked up Kitty’s trail at the school but lost it in the
parking lot, layers of other people’s smells and auto fumes masking where she
could have gone. He went back the
mansion feeling defeated, something alien to him, only to be confronted with a
small sea of faces that looked as bad as he felt. Kurt’s was the worst, though.
Logan felt the uncommon urge to hug the boy but staved it off in light
of more pressing matters. “Alvers ever
show up?”

I heard he went to the boardinghouse.
Want me to call there?” Jamie
offered from his position on the floor, huddled against Rahne at the foot of
the stairs.

be here when he gets here.” Logan felt
a niggling worry about the boy’s whereabouts but pushed it to the back of his
mind, more concerned about Kitty.

Kurt heaved
another sob from the circle of Jubilee’s arms and Logan decided to do something
about it then and there. In one
movement, he seized Kurt by the upper arm and swung him into the study,
shutting the door between them and the mutants gathered in the front hall, the
recon point for the search. Kurt fell
to the floor, eyes half-glazed and staring up at Logan. With a low growl, Logan heaved Kurt to his
feet and held him at eye-level, making him stretch his toes or dangle. “Listen to be, Elf. Kitty ain’t gonna get found if you’re
bawling like a girl. Get your head on
straight and grow some balls or I’m gonna have to lock you in the basement
until this is all over.”

Kurt stared
at the man for a long moment before slowly reaching up and gripping the hand
holding his shirtfront. “Herr Logan,
let me go.”

“Not until
you settle down.”

Kurt’s eyes
had an owlish quality as he looked at Kitty’s guardian. “Ich habe solche Angst.”[2]

sighed and lowered his charge to the ground.
“I know, Kid. Me, too.”


Lance and
Todd shouldered Tabitha between them, the girl’s struggles fainter now than
they had been a few hours before. The
trip to the mansion from the boardinghouse had been harrowing, to say the
least. The only car left at the
boardinghouse had been the one Lance had never finished fixing, necessitating a
duck and run type of travel across town, hiding behind dumpsters and cars,
dodging into vacant lots and buildings when it seemed they would be caught. Todd
had been unusually calm and collected during the whole thing, making Lance feel
a spike of appreciation for the other teenager. Tabitha had struggled off and on, yelling and trying to throw
charges until Todd sealed her mouth with green slime, the substance sticky as
taffy and holding her lips shut, mostly against her fear of swallowing some of
the gunk. Lance tore a strip off the
sheet and bound her hands and feet to slow her struggling and charges but
making the bundle more awkward to carry.
They reached the mansion hours after they left the boarding house, all
involved hungry and tired. Lance kept
them in the dark of the trees across the road from the front gates until he was
sure no one was coming or going, the parade of cars and bikes and mutants on
foot having slowed to a stop. Wonder
what the Hell’s going on… Silently,
he motioned for Todd to pick up the foot-end of the sheet and they made their
way across the dark street to the gates.
Hope this works… Logan was supposed to have keyed the front gates
to Lance’s palm-print, but he would not have put it past the older mutant to
screw him by “forgetting” or rigging it to strafe the area with beanbags or
something similar. With some
trepidation, Lance pressed his right hand to the silver panel to one side of
the gate. There was a metallic whining
noise and a small section of the fence swung open.

man…” Todd breathed. Lance shrugged as
if this was an every day occurrence for him and lead the way onto the grounds
proper. Dodging through shadows, Lance
took Todd and perforce Tabitha around the back of the mansion, narrowly missing
Remy, stepping out for a smoke break on the back patio. The Cajun thief peered in their direction
and Lance felt his heart leap into his throat, but the other mutant turned his
head after a moment.

Is he ignoring us or did he
really not see? Deciding not to
care right then, Lance led his charges to a spot under a dimly glowing window
on the backside of the mansion. They
were just around the corner from where Remy stood, smoking—they were close
enough to smell the cigarette but far enough that they could not see him. Lance set his side of the bundle down and
Todd followed suite, making Tabitha struggle just a little before her motions
fell still. Lance was vaguely worried
about her welfare but not enough to untie her.
He did not trust her enough to do that.
This side of the house was lacking in overhangs and gutters within
Lance’s reach, not nearly as decorative as the front. Trying a few futile jumps, Lance snarled at the darkening night
in frustration before Todd laid a greenish hand on his arm. “Dude, I can do it,” he stage

“Do what? You have no idea what I
was gonna do!” Lance snapped peevishly.

“I’m guessin’ you were gonna get to to that window.” Todd rocked back on
his heels and looked at Lance from hooded eyes. “I can do it.”

“You’ll freak her out, just popping
up…” Lance murmured. He wondered if Amara would scream or just
fry Toad. The boy looked at him expectantly
and Lance sighed. “Fine. Just watch yourself…”

Todd smiled fiendishly and tugged
Tabitha out of the way. “Gimme some
room, yo.” He crouched and was up in a
flash, semi-surprising Lance with the height of his jump. Todd grabbed the thin edge of the windowsill
at the apex of his leap and hung on for dear life. Pulling himself up silently, he peered in through the gauzy
curtains of Amara’s room, half-hoping that she would be changing. What he saw instead nearly made him fall off
the ledge. The girl was kneeling not
two feet from him before a small statue; her eyes were closed and her palms
raised in supplication, bloody cuts flowing freely from each palm. Amara was rocking back and forth and had a
wild look on her face, putting Todd in mind of a picture he once saw the
Medusa, her snake-hair twisting above an expression of pure hate and
malice. How the Hell am I gonna do
this without getting killed?
Glancing down at Lance and the twitching bundle, Todd took a deep breath
and rapped on the window. Amara showed
no reaction so he knocked again, tensing in preparation to leap out of the way
of any attack.

Amara opened her eyes a slit, the
lids flying open when she saw the sallow face staring back at her. “Toad!”
She was on her feet with hands flaming, fighting the wave of nausea that
came with using her powers of late.

“I come in peace!” He said
frantically, waving one hand in a gesture of surrender. Amara narrowed her eyes and Toad flailed
harder. “Lance is down there!” The transformation was amazing. Toad caught his breath as her flames snapped
off and a look of excitement crossed the Nova Roman’s face before her usual
aloof expression settled back.

“Why isn’t he up here?”

“Couldn’t make the jump…” Todd did
not think it was the time or the place to be flippant. “Look, if you don’t believe me, there he
is…” He swung out of the way and
pointed down at the ground.

Amara glared at him briefly before
leaning out the window to peer into the darkness. Lance stared up at her eagerly, unashamed of the emotions welling
to the surface. “I got her for you,
Princess,” he husked. With the toe of
his boot, he prodded the white bundle, making it wriggle and spout an indignant

Amara grinned, feral in the
dark. “I’m yours then.”

Toad felt a strange sensation in the pit of his stomach. Fuck me,
what have I gotten into?


[1] Carl Jung, a
student of Freud, diverged from his mentor’s teachings with his theories on
dream work and archetypes. He’s a
favorite of us metaphysical types… ;p

[2] I’m so
scared. (Thanks, Foxy)

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