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JM: Young tilted head closeup

cyndrarae

Rebelling against Reality since 2003

v14.0


JM: Young tilted head closeup
cyndrarae

Mutant-X x-over with X-Men: Last Dance (1/2) (Jesse/?)


Part 1:

A/N: Sentences in **..** is communication over the comlink.


****

I am not going to tell you how it began. But if you’re interested, I will tell you how it ended.

The world was changing and fast.

Evolution was upon us, rapidly gaining disturbing grounds on complacent humanity. Sides were being chosen, forts secured. War was inevitable… and I would be there, fighting for him… with him… my commander in more ways than one.

But in the meantime I chose to retreat to oblivion where I belonged. I ran, not from war but love. I thought I could escape it… among the fierce wild.

I was wrong.

Picture just another lazy morning up north, my old cabin in the pines. A first fall of snow had already signalled the coming of winter. And as I walked back from the forests determined to catch up on some quality brooding… I felt him.

No, the other him.

Iced winds carried the heady scent of salt and blood and ivory to me, rushing me home.

Locks and bolts don’t stop him, he just likes to think he’s being respectful.
He sat shivering at my door, huddled more like. Fresh bruises marred his youthful face, lips cut and blue and full, hair longer since I last ran my fingers through it. He’d lost weight and he looked dead tired. I will not describe what I saw in his green gaze, I do not know any words that could. He saw me approaching and slowly rose, it physically pained him to do so. But he came all this way… he was here… which meant it hurt worse inside.

I studied him a long time, as he did me. He wore his trademark blue jeans, soiled white vest and a jacket that did not qualify as winterwear. Hands buried in deep pockets, surely hiding a broken finger of two. Ever so slightly hunched in the middle. Broken ribs, two… maybe three. Stable feet set apart in sensible leather boots. Always his favorite apparel that. So at least the legs were fine.

Silence that spoke of great strength, serenity that cautioned of frantic distress. Like the calm before a storm. Deceptive. Elegant. Exquisite.
Miserable.

“What did he do now?”

He looked away, and didn’t look back. I went to him, placed a hand on his left shoulder hoping he wasn’t injured there, and turned him around. He let me lead him inside the cabin and close the door behind us, not once bothering to check his surroundings like I’d taught him to.

//Whats the first thing you do when you enter a closed building?//

//Check out the babes?//

//Locate all exits Moron. Know your options. When the roof comes falling down, you gotta know which direction to run to. Now tell me, what’s the second?//

//I don’t know.//

//Check out the babes.//


“Good to see you Jesse.”

He bit his lip, pushed his hair back consciously and finally agreed to meet my scrutinising glance. I didn’t want to lose myself in those eyes that day. Too much pain there, and one of us needed to be sane. This was worse than… well, this was the worst ever.

For awhile, he just stood there… lost… waiting for instructions of some kind he could clinically follow. So I gave him one.

“You should change.”

He nodded, several times… and went straight to my wardrobe to change into dry non-bloodied clothes, my grey sweatshirt and matching slacks that he liked so much. Inside I like to keep it dark so it always feels like night, with a fireplace the only source of heat, as also dim light. I put a fresh log in the fire, conscious of the difference between my concept of room temperature and others. Not that Jesse would have minded… he seemed quite content freezing himself to near death.

Mind you I am no mother hen. Its just him… he provokes the territorial in me. As did a bunch of other people I’d abandoned when I left…


I shirked off the memories and made coffee, wondering how long he planned to stay this time. The last time we met lasted only an hour before he got called in, but it’d been one hell of an hour… in another hideout in another wild country… the farthest I could find. Back then, Jesse had come to be the only living soul who’d know my location round the year… the only one ‘allowed’ to track me down if he needed to. When he needed to.

He padded out barefoot wearing my clothes two sizes bigger, and a smile… his first.

“Do you need something? Like iodine or… aspirin?”

“Yeah like you would keep medical supplies around.”

“Do you need any?”

“Would I lie if I did?”

And that was that.

He went around the place, touching surfaces, feeling every thing he could get his hands on. A CD cover made him pause.

“Don Williams?”

I scowled at him.

“Never thought you had the required disposition.”

“Oh yeah? What music do you think suits my disposition then?”

“Linkin park”

“And turn all the animals against me? I gotta live in this forest boy.”

He laughed silently.

“Hey, check this out.”

And he proceeded to phase out to nothingness.

//And?//

I was just beginning to wonder how far gone was he when I saw what he really wanted me to see… a missing coffee mug I’d kept for him on an equally missing table. I whistled and the outlines reappeared, filling out as fast as they’d vanished. Been long since I saw him last.

“Cool. When did you learn to do that?”

“Recently. I don’t have it under control yet… get sick sometimes if I phase out big things like you know, aircrafts and such… but… hey…”

The animated act was not reaching his eyes. I nodded to let him see how proud I was of him. He fixed me with a stare of such… gratefulness, it broke my heart.

Shames me now to think how I had first entered his life with the sole motive to hunt down the illustrious but suspiciously missing Doctor Adam Kane and his rumored mutant outfit known as MutantX. Track, infiltrate and destroy if necessary… those were my orders.

It began as a favor to a friend… one I’d do anything for. But it didn’t take long to figure out the truth. MutantX was a good doctor and four good kids… brave responsible kids fighting battles big and small, providing safe havens to mutants in need. This was the new breed, the second generation… they’d chosen their side… and Jesse was one of them.

As is obvious, there was no destroying whatsoever, only a consolidation of strengths and causes. Plus I got Jesse in exchange for my troubles… not that he was there for the taking.

The boy was miserably lost in love of that Mulwray guy… a man who had not the slightest idea and would not give him a second glance… a man who loved Shalimar, who was more than a sister to Jesse, and whom she loved very much in return. Big messy soap opera this. Lets just say, I understood him.
I got Jesse, and mind you he was no substitute… he was something else altogether. Something… who was being way too careless with his hot coffee.

“You spill you clean.”

He laughed. “Sir yes sir.”

We sat in comfortable silence, me on the little couch, him on the floor by the fireplace, needing to stretch out his aching muscles. He was obviously severely beaten up, and the more I saw of him, the more I found myself getting enraged at the bastard who’d hurt him. But as always, I waited, biding my time, until Jesse decided he was composed enough to talk. Took eternity.

“He… he was… drugged.”

So it was him.

“He hit you?”

Jesse rushed to his defense like lightning.

“I hit back. And he was under influence. He didn’t know what he was doing or… saying.”

//What did he say?//

I didn’t ask, simply because I knew this was the answer that was tearing him apart. The breaths were deeper and longer.

“He said that… that I was a liability to the team.”



“That I need someone to watch my back… and… that I can't control my powers and…”



I let him ramble a while longer. Always helps, if you do it with an audience.
I once told Jesse snippets from my past life. Decided a brief reminder might help put things in perspective.

“Sounds like mind control. The subject has no control on what he says or does. You’re like a puppet and someone else holds the strings.”

He nodded, he understood.

“I know. It's just…”

He suddenly laughed. Short and bitter. I stared into the fire that had captured his attention so, and saw what he saw. Flames mirroring the anguish burning inside. Typical of Jesse to forget the important parts like him saving Brennan’s life and defeating the bad guys and such. Instead, he focussed on the hurtful parts like what was said and done to him earlier. Sucks to be sensitive doesn’t it.

“As a friend, he knew you, knew your insecurities… what you were afraid of…”

He cringed at my words.

“As an enemy, he used that knowledge against you… to break you. And it worked.”

He nodded ever so slightly.

“But that’s not why you’re here. You know he couldn’t help doing what he did, and you’re too rational to hold that against him. You’re here because… he knows… he knows your weaknesses.”

Bang on. That laugh again.

“Hurts to realise that the person you love so much doesn’t even respect you as… as anything.”

He blinked back tears he thought I couldn’t see.

“I think you’re wrong about that.”

“Am I?”

Everyone has weaknesses, I wanted to remind him. But it was clear that wasn’t a question he expected a real answer to. I started to feel envious of the fireplace that he’d rather look at instead of me. A distraction was needed and fast.

“Jesse.”

Must be the tone. He turned toward me and knew it was time. We’d danced around it way too long.

“Strip.”

He sighed at me, and I hoped I hadn’t read him wrong. Quietly he stood up, wincing at the effort, and began to disrobe. Taking off the sweatshirt was a task of torment I let him carry out on his own. He stepped out of the bottoms, not wearing anything else and straightened up… eyes not leaving mine for a second, waiting for the next instruction. That’s all he needed today, that’s all he was capable of…

“Come here…”

And he came, walking as if in a trance. He stood between my open legs, close to me… and let me hold him to me by his hips. I looked up at his angelic face streaked with tears while he just stood, not touching, not moving, no sounds except his ragged expectant breathing. His body was tense and rigid, covered in extensive bruises… purple outlines warning me where to steer away from as I slid my hands down his body… and back up and twice around. His sides, his flanks, his shoulder blades, his broken ribs, his swollen hands… his navel, his slim waist, his scarred knees, insides of his thighs, his balls, his shaft…

He closed his eyes and sighed deeply, letting me know I wasn’t to stop what I was doing. I caressed him with every emotion of a man possessed and worked him into a slow but thorough release. He threw his head back and moaned softly as I fondled him, stroking him to completion… my beautiful naked angel. Soon he was gripping my shoulders for support as his strength dwindled and finally collapsed, resting his spent frame against mine. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.

“Thank you.”

“Shhh… quiet.”

He obeyed, and I gathered him into my lap like a gasping child in need of comfort. Cleaned him up and pulled him close. He hid his still wet face in my neck and curled up into a ball against me, flinching at the strain it put on his wounds.

“Don’t do that.”

“I’m not touching you enough.”

I smiled and rubbed his sore back for him, kissed his soft hair. But not the lips… always a big thing for him. The first time we did this, he insisted on a strict touch but don’t kiss policy. Gradually it became kissing okay but not on the lips. Some fantastical romantic notion he never confessed to me, but I knew it meant only Brennan could kiss him on the lips… that is if he ever wanted to. For everything he’s been through, and all his strengths and sensibilities, quite shocking this… innocence of his.

Jesse relaxed, the tension ebbing away with every breath he took me in, and drifted to sleep. We’d never done this before you know. I never allowed myself to sleep because of the nightmares, and he’d never let his defenses down either. But this… this was… new. Exhausted, naked, trembling in my arms… figured he was as vulnerable as he could possibly get. Might as well catch some much needed sleep.

When I was sure he was sound asleep, I got up and carried him to the bedroom. A wicked lusting streak compelled me to lean back on the armchair and watch him as he slept, uncovered. The boy was exceedingly pretty with a noble as hell heart… I pitied Brennan for what he didn’t even know he was missing. For a fleeting moment, I imagined myself in his place and what it would be like to be adored so immensely by Jesse. Felt good. Very good. And then envy took over.

//What the hell was happening to me?//

For long, I just sat there and stared and stared. About two hours later, Jesse stirred. And he did what I did not expect him to… he called out for me. In that instant alone… I knew what Don Williams has been crooning about all this time.

“I’m here.”

I whispered as I got in bed with him. His arm snaked out to pull me down to him and snuggled against me. Okay, I couldn’t let him sleep any longer.
I raised his face to me, stroked his jawline and kissed him on the nose, making him chuckle ever so softly. Then before he could protest, I had touched his lips… with mine. Drawing back to look at his eyes now wide open, and the absence of repulsion there impelled me to go again. This time, I stayed. Lingered longer, licked his lips wetter, prodded until his lips parted and let me in. His body shuddered and I held him tighter.

“I was wondering when you would do that…”

We kissed.

He pulled me over him, tearing away at my clothes revealing me to his hungry eyes. He was searing hot wherever I touched him, and it made me worry if I was an ice brick in comparison. But his hands all over me did not seem to mind. I travelled down his body, mapping every inch of him with my lips and fingertips, making him sigh with pleasurable urgency. I turned him over and did the same to his neck, his back, the base of his spine and his beautiful butt. He whimpered as I kneaded the hot flesh for him and very gently twisted his wrists together behind him, holding him down. My control slipping, the wildness taking over… and Jesse was on the receiving end of it all. Thankfully he wasn’t complaining.

I had no lubricant, so used my tongue again to prepare him. He jerked up and squirmed as if in pain.

“Jesse if this…”

“No, don’t stop…”

And I didn’t. Stabbed his little hole with my tongue as far as it would go, circling in the depths of his most intimate erogenous zone and listening to him moan like a wanton rentboy. Spread his butt cheeks as far as they could go, held him utterly and completely immobilized, and he loved it. Later I used my fingers, first two then three to stretch him further and when he was ready… I stroked myself to utter hardness, wishing he could do it for me. But that would have meant having to let him up which I didn’t consider to be an acceptable trade-off.

Then came the glorious moment I first entered Jesse, that intense feeling of being engulfed in such tight heat… blew my mind away. I filled him up to the hilt and his moans of pleasure assured me I was not hurting him. I stretched out carefully over him, supporting my own weight so as not to cause him any more damage. This time I held his wrists up by the sides of his neck… kissing him wherever I could reach. He raised his head to crane back and we kissed in that awkward position a long time, despite the strain he was putting his injured body through. We moved against each other, stroking in and out in perfect rhythmic fashion… indulging each other the way only we could.

“Jess… Jess… Jess…”

So I wasn’t Brennan. And he wasn’t Scott. But we were enough for each other… enough to ease the pain, to calm the tears… enough to drive the cares of a thankless world away. To live, not just exist… to be on the inside for a change, safe in the arms of someone who wanted us, needed us… loved us.

To not be alone.

I was falling, deeper and deeper into an unfamiliar abyss of uncontrolled passion… all my pretenses ripped apart… and it occurred to me this was no escape from reality… this was no sexual reprieve… this was the real thing! This was love! This was Jesse! Not the illusion of something I couldn’t have… because This Is what I wanted… and everything I wanted was right here… beneath me! Needing me back, wanting me back… writhing with utter and complete ecstasy that I was causing!
This was it!

“Jesse, oh God… Jesse I think I…”

And the torrent rose… and then there was static.

**Hey Jesse?**


******

Continued in Part 2 >>

JM: Young tilted head closeup
cyndrarae

Mutant-X x-over with X-Men: Last Dance (2/2) (Jesse/?)

<< Continued from Part 1


PART 2

**Jess you there buddy?**

I stilled. He stilled.

**Jesse please talk to me. You cant just ignore me. I will find you you know that.**

He had his comlink on. Not a stitch but he had his comlink on.
The resounding voice deflated him entirely. He stared at his ring like he didn’t know what it was, like he didn’t want to know what it was. But the tragedy was that he knew. Perfectly well.
I slid out of him painfully. Not like he noticed.

**Emma told me what happened. And… I’m sorry kid. I can only imagine how much I must have hurt you. I… I don’t remember much but… Jess please. Talk to me?**

Dragged myself out of bed. Dressed.

//Why the hell did he have his comlink on?//

**Everyone is so worried, Shalimar is going crazy on me. You know that woman’s gonna scratch my eyes out if you don’t come home soon. Man you didn’t even wait for me to wake up that’s no fair.**

Jesse didn’t move an inch, his hands still where I’d held them. Legs spread open, my almost-release trickling out from his gaping hole. Head turned to the right where his ring was. Eyes… silent.

**Give me my chance to apologise will ya? And also to thank you for saving my ass. Again! How many times is it now?**

……

**I wish I could take back everything I did… and said kid, but I know that You know I would never ever hurt you intentionally.**

……

**Man how could I? You’re my best friend Jess, you’re my little brother… and I Love you. You know that don’t you?**

……


Jesse slowly began to curl up again, on his side… left fist to his mouth to muffle the escaping sobs… green eyes fixated at the ring through which Brennan spoke to his heart. He loved him… like a brother… like a friend… but it wasn’t enough was it?

I leaned by the doorway to calm myself down, suppress the pain in my heart I yearned to become immune to like everything else. Perfect timing this guy had. Fucking bastard.

**Jesse I know you can hear me, please don’t be like this. You can't keep running.**

The bastard Jesse loved.
The bastard who probably just ruined my second chance at life.

**okay I uhh… I’ll catch you when you get back okay? Come on Jess now don’t be a wuss… I promise I won't beat on you again. Come back please.**

And the air went dead.

Jesse broke. Like he hadn’t broken before. And I was not the one to put him back together this time round.
Besides, I was broken too.

I grabbed my gear and fled the cabin to hide in the forest, knowing I was the last person Jesse wanted to see right now. My presence would only cause him more pain and confusion and he had enough to sort out on his own without me dumping more guilt onto him. He had to go back and face Brennan, and not let a drug-induced mishap ruin his life forever. I stood in the way of that.

Typical. Seems I am always standing in the way of someone. Maybe I am a closet masochist who just loves to chase people who’re not and never will be interested in me. Maybe I just do it to myself… to reinforce the animalistic aspects of my life. I am a loner. I operate best alone and heartless in the cold wilderness… no strings attached. And that’s how I should remain all my life.

Alone.
I hoped Jesse would be gone by evening.

At sunset, I decided to return and resume my initial plans for the day that had been ruined when Jesse showed up. Almost dreaded the thought of finding Jesse sitting at my door again, and thankfully he wasn’t. Opened the door, closed it behind me and smelt him.

He was still there.

I think my first instinct was that of rage. I wanted him out… did not want to see him again, did not wanna listen to his pathetic drabbles about love lost again… and I walked into the bedroom determined to let him know just that.

Like I said, he was still there… in exactly the same position that I’d left him in. Naked, curled up into a tight foetus on the bed, shivering from the biting cold… the fire had gone out long ago…

“Damn it Jesse!”

I rushed to his side, checked his pulse to see if he was okay. He was conscious, awake and staring still at the fucking ring. He’d been crying, and biting down on a fist that already had two broken fingers in it. Quickly I covered him with warm blankets and went to light up a strong fire. I poured a glass of water, came around to sit behind him and raised him into my lap. He struggled, didn’t like the change in environment and groaned like a child against me.

“Jess it's okay… it's okay…”

I held him and rocked him, until he simmered down and then gave him the water. That seemed to erase some of his disorientation a bit and he grew conscious of what was going on. He looked at up me… then he looked back at his ring.

“I’m… sorry…”

I pulled him closer wrapped in all the sheets, all my anger from before wiped away in a single moment of brutal realization… that when it comes to love… once you start, you can never stop. I uncurled his wounded hand and he winced at the jolts of pain it caused. Gently I kissed his knuckles with teeth marks on them, suppressing a feral urge to lick them clean.

He rested himself against me and apologised again. I told him he didn’t need to, that nothing was his fault. None of it. I told him I was cool, we could always finish what we started some other time and gave him one of my rarest smiles. Mercifully he smiled back, the growing warmth bringing him back from his tryst with insanity. We sat like that for awhile, holding hands. And then he sighed.

“I should go back.”

“you should.”

“Like h-he said… I can't keep running.”

“Said a lot of other things that made sense Jesse. Must be a hell of a guy.”

He beamed at that, my Jesse.

“He is.”

“Nice to have friends and brothers like that don’t you think?”

He looked at me through tortured eyes. Life’s a bitch they said to me, and I agreed with dark eyes of my own.

“I was thinking…”

“Hey now you know better than to do that.”

He awarded me another half smile for my effort. Followed it up with a sigh.

“Why don’t I… you know maybe I… I could… can I… I mean…”

“You can't stay with me Jess.”

Beat.

“Why not?”

“Why too?”

“I… I could be like you. I could go join them on missions whenever they need me to, the way you do? Like a… you know like a freelancer. No strings attached right?”

“No wonder Adam thinks I’m a bad influence, is that all you see me as? A fucking freelancer?”

“N-No, I just…”

I managed to alarm him with my sudden annoyance, and had to cuddle him closer to stop him from stammering an answer I did not need.

“Jesse, I’m old, I’m cynical and I really really hate all this psycho-babble bullshit. Damn me if I understand why you like talking to me of all people ‘cause frankly I never thought of myself as a man of words you know.”

“Yeah, beats me too.”

I ruffled his hair.

“Men like us can't afford to ignore our calling. You know there is a war coming.”

He lowered his eyes, in reluctant agreement.

“And it would help to have someone like Brennan watching your back.”

Before he could protest, I clarified.

“For my sake. It would help Me feel… better. You know what I mean.”

That sad smile again. Eyes reflected the guilt he felt inside for me. I hate myself for being the source of that particular emotion in him and, well… a number of other people.

Eventually he decided he’d had enough talk thank God, and I helped him to his feet. He insisted on taking a bath which I didn’t think was such a good idea for his ribs and ended up squabbling another fifteen minutes. I knew I’d miss the sound of his voice when he was gone. At some level, I suppose he knew too that he would never see me again, and was hanging back longer than practically necessary.

It was jet dark outside, even at six in the evening. He came out of the bath dressed in his own clothes, only cleaner, dripping hair slicked back sexily… lips set in a pout I found irresistible and hard to look at all at once. He began to close the distance between us.

“Where’s your car?”

“Just outside the forest, at the American border.”

I nodded approval, stood up and moved away. He didn’t like the way I was rushing him.

“Why can't I stay the night? It's… dark outside you know.”

“You’ll be home for dinner if you leave now.”

“But…”

“No buts Jesse. Leave now.”

……

“Will… when will I see you again?”

“Can't say.”

“Can I come back over the weekend?”

“I’ll be gone by weekend.”

“Where?”

“Don’t know.”

“Okay. You will let me know when you find your new place and I’ll come then.”

“No.”

“No?”

Beat.

“What the hell do you mean no?”

“Jesse… we can't see each other again.”

“Why not?”

“'Cause I say so.”

“…… that’s not good enough for me.”

“Is for me. Go on get out of here.”

……

“You… you said that we… we would finish what we started.”

“I lied, to get you out of bed.”

……

“And what a great liar you are. You'd also lied to get me there in the first place remember?”

I could not answer that. He was angry… eyes accusing me of gross betrayal, silently pleading with me to take back the cruel words and make this all right. But I couldn’t.

How could I tell him I couldn’t see him again because seeing him now was no different from seeing Scott… painful… torturous… agonising? How could I tell him that he had become the very thing I had been hiding from up here in the jungles all this time… that I’d fallen in love with him?

//But it wasn’t enough was it…//

I knew Jesse was hurting. I knew he was torn between returning to the only family he’d ever known and a second-best choice that would mercifully keep him away from… Brennan. I planned to solve his dilemna by eliminating the second option altogether.

I walked up to and leaned against the bedroom door, arms crossed against my chest and stared at the unmade bed with its disarrayed sheets. The picture of Jesse sleeping between them burnt so deep in my memory it would ache for a long long time to come. I felt him closing in behind me and felt my heart catching in my throat. One hesitant hand reached out and touched, then gripped my shoulder. In that instant, I could have so easily given in to the lover in me, turned around and taken Jesse in my arms, swearing never to let him go.

Instead I gave in to the wolf.


I struck out… adamantium blades ripped out of white knuckles in a swift rush of raw emotion, burying themselves stiffly in the wooden frame opposite… barricading him out. I also managed to forcefully jerk his hand off in the process. Jesse took a step back, obviously stunned. I hung my head low.

“Leave.”

The salt was back.
Jesse backed up, not turning away from me until he reached the door. His tears burned holes in my back and I fought to restrain mine. Felt wrong abandoning him when he was so lost already, but I had to. For his sake… and mine. I survived Scott. I wasn’t sure I could survive Jesse.


A gush of cold wind blew in, and I closed my eyes… waited for Jesse to slam the door on me one last time. I cringed.

“Does it hurt?”

His voice, soft and wet and hoarse… he was standing at the open door, taking me in one last time. I couldn’t help but gasp, as the distant memory of Marie whispering those very words droned my senses. I turned to look at Jesse… his sea green eyes… and answered the question that he was really asking.

“Every time.”

He walked out and the door slid shut with a soft click.


*** END***