May 4th, 2003

JM: Young tilted head closeup

MutantX: Senseless (Brennan/Jesse) (10/11)

5:14 am, Level 2

Brennan and Shalimar split up. There were two entrances to Level 2, Brennan took the left one and Shalimar took the right. They were immediately greeted with blood and gore and they saw some mutants and some GSA agents lying dead. They were obviously taking no prisoners at this level. The first band of agents was ready for Brennan as they had been informed by their mates outside. The moment Brennan came in sight, they opened fire. Only these weren’t normal bullets, rather sedative darts .. that’s much worse. Brennan the electrical was needed alive.
// Dream on. //
And he opened his own fire… zapping the entire metal door they were hiding behind.. electrocuting and dazing half the team. They wont be getting up anytime soon. The other half moved backwards and continued to fire… this time real bullets.
// Now that’s more like it! //
Shalimar cleared her way through the tin men with minimal effort. While some were too damn slow in reacting, others were simply too stunned by her feral beauty and agility to react at all. After the last agent went down, she moved further up the tunnel. And there, she saw four agents huddled behind a wall… looking at something or someone… who was further up at the end of the tunnel. Shalimar didn’t have to strain too much to see and hear that it was Jesse trapped at the T-section between the tunnels and that these agents were about to move in towards him.
And then they opened fire.

Brennan was riddled with anxiety as he reached the curve in the tunnel through which he could see two agents fast advancing upon the T-section just ahead. And what he saw caused him to feel rage like he’d never felt before. The agents were shooting at Jesse!
He switched on the comlink same time that Shalimar did to warn Jesse about the agents.
“Agents Jesse … be careful” That was Shalimar, who obviously did not know about his loss of mutancy.
“Jesse get out of there! Run towards the tunnel behind you!”
That was Brennan.

And Jesse would have run, towards the third tunnel.. towards Emma, just as bullets rained on him from the two directions. But when he stood up to run, he saw Shalimar fighting the four agents, all four of them having two kinds of ammunition. While one was still shooting at Jesse, the other three were fighting her. And there was no way she could take all of them at such close range!
And Jesse ran towards the second tunnel instead, into the line of fire.
“Jesse no!”

Brennan panicked to see Jesse run in the wrong direction. Just then the one of the agents having heard his scream turned toward him while the second one continued to shoot at Jesse. With one hand he zapped the agent coming at him and with the other, he pulled out the gun he didn’t wanna use and shot the guy shooting at Jesse.
Shot him dead.
Meanwhile, Jesse was running toward Shalimar, toward the shooter and as Shalimar noticed now.. without phasing out.
“Jesse phase!”


And the inevitable happened.
A bullet caught and wedged itself in Jesse’s right shoulder, just as he dived to knock the shooter off his feet. Shalimar knocked one agent unconscious and turned to the other two still stalking her. But her attention was on Jesse.
“Jesse you okay?”
“I’m fine” He grunted.
“Never felt a bullet before.”
He added as he grabbed hold of one of the agents, pulled off his helmet with his left injured arm and with the right, delivered a solid box to the nose. The agent didn’t go down. He boxed him again, and again. He finally decided to faint and Jesse dropped him on his ass. Shalimar meanwhile took care of the other agent just as Brennan and Emma came rushing toward them.
They looked around for any more surprises but there were no GSA agents to deliver any. Emma ran toward a mutant who was really dead, to check his pulse. Shalimar turned to Jesse.
“Jesse you’re hit.”
Jesse wanted to sink to the floor but something came in the way. He looked up to see Brennan holding him into his lap, stroking his hair lovingly.
“You’re okay Jesse.”
And Jesse smiled. Shal and Emma were at his side in no time. And Shalimar brought up the big question. “Jesse why didn’t you phase?”

Emma stayed quiet, not saying a word.
Shalimar was holding his head and kissing him but now she looked at him doubtfully.
“Oh Jess don’t tell me you’re still feeling the effects of the serum!”
Brennan and Jesse looked at one another, then Brennan spoke up.
“Hey we’ll discuss this later, we gotta get out of here now.”

Everyone agreed and Shal and Brennan helped Jesse up, who was getting weak from the blood loss. Everyone except Shalimar headed toward level 4’s exit where Adam was waiting with the aircraft. Shal went back to get the mutants still blocking the front door and on their way back, they destroyed whatever property there was that could possibly lead GSA to the rest of the underground. They all got in and flew off… took one last surveillance of the region. Didn’t look like they had left any mutants or evidence behind. Once satisfied, Adam headed for the other safehouse where they dropped the mutants who had been so very helpful in countering the siege.
When it was just the five of them, they flew towards the Sanctuary.

They were on their way to the Sanctuary when Adam turned his full attention to Jesse. He was sitting leaned up against Shal because that’s where she wanted him to be. He had been given first-aid and painkiller shots and the bleeding was under control. It was only on close examination that Adam realized the bullet was still inside.
“How the hell did you let a bullet get to you at all?”
Shalimar was voicing her concerns.
“Adam I think he was not able to phase in time, something might be affecting his mutation. You think the serum is still in his body..?”
She didn’t notice Jesse closing his eyes wishing he could just wish this whole mess away. Now he owed an explanation to everybody and that might reveal what had transpired between him and Brennan earlier that night.. morning.
Brennan was sitting farthest possible from Jesse. He wasn’t even looking at him.
Adam, piqued by what Shalimar had just told him, “can you phase now.. so the bullet might come out? And keep your bandage on please!”
// Uh-oh //

All eyes were trained at Jesse, making him edgy. Brennan turned around to look too. He looked and felt like a convict awaiting sentence. His moment of justice had finally arrived. And tears welled up in eyes at the thought of the worst that could have happened, all because of his thoughtlessness.
// I’m so sorry Jesse… //

Jesse closed his eyes.. against the pain.. against the fear.. the helplessness.. against everything he thought was important to him, but wasn’t. The only thing he’d wanted was what he couldn’t have. And nothing else mattered. Not anymore. He took a deep breath, and focused.

Jesse ghosted. The bullet fell with a clonk onto the floor.
Brennan blinked. He looked down at his watch and smiled. 5.27 am.
// Huh... maybe not so accurate after all! //
Relieved, he looked up and smiled at Jesse, who smiled back.

“okay Jesse.. that’s good. Now can you morph to solid form as well for me?”
Jesse did what he was told. Rock solid. Shal was surprised but also hugely relieved. Emma smiled reassuringly, and stayed quiet.
“Jesse you scared me for a moment there.”
“Ugghh! S-Sorry Shal.. but please.. can you not hug me so tight?”
Adam gave the verdict, “He seems fine to me. Maybe there were way too many bullets flying around to keep a count. It happens.. “
He patted Jesse’s hand and got up.
Shalimar kissed his forehead. And Emma kissed his cheek.
“Oh come on girls! Stop fussing, its just a bullet hole.”
Not that the girls were about to listen anyway. Jesse tuned out and looked at Brennan, who sat against the aircraft wall… one knee trapped between his hands, staring back at him. And he saw something in those brandy brown eyes he hadn’t seen before…

JM: Young tilted head closeup

MutantX: Senseless (Brennan/Jesse) (11/11)


So we come back from the mission and Jesse's gone off to sleep because of the drugs Adam gave him, on the flight back. I have to carry him to his room.. and I don't mind that at all. But now Shalimar wants to stay with him.. much to my chagrin. Who the hell she thinks she is.. his mother?
Oh I know I know.. she was in his life before me, and the bond between them.. its.. I cant explain it. Hey I got lot of respect for it though. Have seen them and heard them together enough to know that when she says she’s staying.. she’s staying. I lay my lover down on the bed we shared only a few hours ago. I bet Shalimar with her feral-ness can just smell the sex that was had in here... and I bet she can smell me... on him.. and everything else in the room.

I ignore that possibility for the time being, it isn't important to me anyway, though it may be to Jess. Jesse... my beautiful, precious Jesse... his face is drawn and pale because of the blood loss, but thankfully he's out like a light right now so cant feel the pain. I wish I could lay down beside him, hold his deceptively fragile figure close to myself and sleep for a whole year. I wish he would wake up and with those crystal clear eyes of his, let me know again that he's not mad at me. I want to touch every single inch of him and make sure he's here... all here... with me...
"hey Sparky."
Shalimar startles me. I didn't realise I'd been staring at the unconscious boy.
"Its okay I'll take first watch. You should go rest too."
But I don't wanna! Damn ferals and their maternity complexes.

I quietly close the door and turn around only to walk into Emma. The blunt look on her face tells me she knows everything now. She smiles at me sheepishly.
“In moments of crisis, people tend to let their mental shields down. Jesse was kind of.. broadcasting all over the place. I couldn’t help overhearing.”
I try to walk past but she refuses to be ignored.
“You’re broadcasting too.”
“I’m broadcasting what?”
“.. that you love him. That you… you want to be with him.”
See why Emma had no friends growing up?
“Emma I really.. don’t wanna talk about this.”

And she turns around to leave. Uh-oh.
“Hey wait a minute. You.. you’re not gonna push this?”
“You want me to?”
“Hell yes!”

So okay I’m a jerk. Not too good with expressing emotions and all.. but talking to Emma .. have to admit.. it always helped. It puts things in perspective, and today she's helped me realize why Jesse’s sudden aloofness was bothering me so much. Why I couldn’t let go this time. Why the fear of something happening to Jesse had clawed at my entire being throughout the mission today. It was because... I love him too. I do.

So there you have it. The whole truth.. and nothing but the truth. How Brennan Mulwray fell in love! Again. Second time actually. The first time was… well.. lets just say, it didn’t go so well.. what with the love of my life turning out to be pretty much the mad scientist only wanting to harness me as a source of free electricity.
So Not well, that I couldn’t trust anyone for a very very long time and I had sworn to all the Gods in the sky that I would never.. ever do it again. Never be in love again.

Forgive me Lord.
But love is too strong for me to fight anymore. Jesse… sweet Jesse. His smile, his laughter.. his innocence, his blind faith in me.. too strong.
Yeah yeah I admit.. the kid aint just another lay no more. He is the owner of my heart, the temptation of my soul.. the life of my life.. yaddi yadda yadda. Not too good with mushy words am I.. ?.. thought as much.

Emma swears to keep our secret until we sort things out.. and tell Adam and Shalimar ourselves. We’ll get to that.. eventually. Right now, I have to sort things out with Jesse himself. I need to tell him that I.. I love him too. That.. I want us to be.. oh what the hell.. I want us to be committed to each other. No daytime camouflages. No Ashley.. no Daniel or Danielle, no one whatsoever. And this is when I mentally kick myself for sitting next to a telepath while musing privately.
“You know.. Danielle really is a girl..”
“I introduced them myself. She’s the daughter of the genetics professor we met last month remember?”

“Doesn’t matter. That’s not my concern.” And I am not just saying it. Suddenly.. the sex of the person really didn’t matter. I don't intend to share Jesse with anyone anymore. But I wonder why he lied to me.
“He was just playing me wasn’t he?”
“No he wasn’t Brennan. Way I see it.. he was trying everything possible to discourage your interest in him. He was trying to fall out of love with you.”

Yeah I can understand that. Experience tells me the best way to keep a relationship from getting too sentimental is by not keeping it exclusive. Fidelity brings trust and strengthens bonds.
Infidelity snaps them in an instant.
Jealousy is something I didn’t have much experience with, until recently. The thought of Jesse with anyone else, man or woman, was doing to me what it must have done to Jesse when he saw me leaving his bed to go to Ashley. Or even in the day, when I shamelessly enjoyed my quasi-playboy status and he stuck to being as invisible as possible. Oh kid.

And he was only trying to keep things as uncomplicated between us as possible by not telling me about his real feelings. Unrequited love in the workplace… not too conducive when you need to be totally undistracted and when you need to trust each other with your lives! It occurs to me that Jesse never did bullshit me. All the reasons he gave me were truly true. My sweet Jesse.

I get up.
“Where you going?”
“To Jesse. I cant let Shalimar hog him all day.”
Emma giggles. The lady looks young and delicate.. but she has immense wisdom and strength of mind.. something I need to work on myself.
“Thanks Emma.”
“No problem. Good luck.”
She winks at me and walks away. And I hear her in my head..
“And don’t tell Shalimar you borrowed her shackles.. she’ll be really pissed.”
I laugh and head toward Jesse’s room again.

One short of feeling.
One short of sanity. One short of any intelligence whatsoever. One moron. One dorko.
What's my point? Nothing really.. I rant. I rant when I’m anxious, or excited, or in a huge hurry to get something done. And right now, I’m all of the above.
I need to tell Jesse I love him. I need to hold him, kiss him, dry off the tears I saw in his eyes this morning and didn’t do a damn thing about. And I need to see him smile. To hear him say that he forgives me for getting him almost killed… and that he still wants me.. still loves me.
Jesse loves me! And life is perfect.

I am smiling as I open the door to Jesse’s chamber. He isn’t sleeping anymore. He’s sitting with Shalimar.. they’re leaning into each other, sharing a joke or something and look up when I walk in. He smiles... at me. And he likes what he sees in my eyes too. I need to kiss those lips Right now. But something tells me, I need to get Shalimar out of the way first and that seems a very difficult task right now. Or is it?
“Yes Brennan.”
Something in her voice.. in her smile..?
“Could you please give us a minute?”
“What for? So you can put him in shackles again?”
And she’s holding up the rings in one hand as Jesse blushes furiously beside her. I left them here in plain sight… bumbling idiot that I am.
“Get lost you!”
Jesse is whining pleasantly at her.
She laughs and gets up. She kisses him on the head while he pretends to get annoyed even as he laughs. Then she turns to me and gives me a mock stern look. She doesn’t seem so pissed I stole her shackles after all does she?
She walks to the door and calls out behind her, “Breakfast at eight boys.”
And she’s gone. I turn to Jesse.

“You think we can make it for breakfast kid?”
He’s glowing. I think I have seen that look of sheer happiness on his face before. And I’m proud to report I was responsible for it then as well.
“I doubt it.”
“So do I.”

Yep. Life is definitely… perfect.