Chapter 20 - The day after.



Orono had been the first of the adults to wake up. She had been sitting in the kitchen for the past hour, bringing up the courage to go into the common room. She sighed and stood up.

"Better get this over with", she muttered to herself.

She walked over to the common room door and took a deep breath before opening it, preparing herself for the worst. At first, the room looked like the aftermath of any teenager's party, except for the fact that there was a sleeping tiger seperating the girls from the boys, and that there was a blue elf-boy swaying upside-down from the chandelier by his tail, fast asleep. Kitty and Rogue were sleeping in their sleeping bags, Rogue next to a very unstable looking pile of Cd's, while the boys had found anything soft to lie on. Pietro was draped across a chair, hugging a pillow. Lance was curled up in a little ball on the rug while Fred was sleeping on the floor with his head resting on a foot rest. Todd on the other hand had fallen asleep leaning on Sidney's shoulder on the guys side of the room. Sidney herself looked peacefull enough, even if she was in tiger form, and the fact that she had a fifteen year old guy leaning on her shoulder didn't seem to bother her. Orono looked around for her nephew, she couldn't see him anywere. Suddenly in the corner of the room, a pile of snack food wrapers and papers moved and a foot stuck out from under them, well at least she knew where Evan was now, probably the work of Pietro. It was then that Orono saw it. Sat on the couch side by side, she saw who she asumed to be Scott and Jean, sleeping soundly. Scott didn't look the worse for wear, except for the fact that he had a cocktail umbrella sticking to the side of his shades. Jean, on the other hand, looked like one of those doll heads that young girls get to practice putting on makeup. Her hair was also bright green, with Logan's cowboy hat on her head. Storm calmly stepped out of the room and walked into the kitchen, closing the door behind her. She then promptly fell onto the floor in a fit of laughter. Logan stepped into the kitchen and looked down at the weather witch and blinked.

"Are you okay O?", he asked, raising an eyebrow and backing away slightly from the now manically laughing Storm.

All she could do was point in the direction of the common room, there was no way she could compose herself enough to talk yet. Logan shrugged and walked off. He returned a few minutes later with a grin on his face.

"Looks like they had a good time", he said, "i wondered where my hat had gone".

Storm was still giggling and could only managed a nod.

"I gotta admit, it's a sight", he said, "i took a picture of it, just in case. Half the roll was already used up, i think they were talkin' pictures of Red and Shades".

Xavier came rolling in and smiled at the still giggling Storm.

"I take it you have seen inside the comon room", he said with a chuckle.

"Yes, yes i did", said Storm finally, "it makes one wonder what on earth happened in there last night".

"I don't think i want ta know", said Logan shaking his head, "at least they didn't wreck the place".

"No, at least we can be thankfull for that", said Xavier, "i'm surprised the girls didn't wake you  Logan, they entered your room twice last night".

"They....did?", asked Logan, blinking, "well that explains why my hat is on Red's head and why one of her bra's is on my dresser. Ya coulda warned me Charles".

"Then that would take the fun out of it", said Xavier with a chuckle, "Jean placed one of her bra's on the dresser of every boy in the insititute. She wasn't looking where she was going when she tried to put one on mine, though she did try to put up a good mental block".

"I wonder how they got to that state?", said Storm, now more composed, "and how my nephew ended up under a pile of litter".

"If they never talk about it, i think i'll be happy", said Logan, "next time, lets not let them anywhere near alcohol".

"Agreed", said Orono and Xavier in unison.




Jean slowly opened her eyes and instantly regreted it. The second the sun hit her, she had a migrane. She groaned and put a hand to her head, when she brought her hand back down it was covered She started to stand up to go and look in a mirror when she realised someone was leaning on her and snorning. She turned her head to come face to face with Scott, who had a huge smile on his face and a cocktail umbrella sticking to his shades. Jean blinked, what was Scott doing down here?. She sighed and looked around the room. All the boys were in there and...was that a tiger?. She closed her eyes and opened them again, yes, there was a tiger sleeping in the common room with Todd leaning on it's shoulder, it took her a few seconds to realise that it must be Sidney, or at least she HOPED it was Sidney. She heard Scott start to stir next to her and looked over at him. He put his hand to his head and, even if no one could see it, blinked a few times.

"Jean? How did you get here?", he asked,the looked around his surroundings "how did I get here?".

"I don't know", said Jean with a sigh, "i woke up like this".

"Is that a tiger?", said Scott, "or am i halucinating?".

"No, it's a tiger", said Jean.

Scott shook his head and turned back to Jean and gasped.

"Errr Jean....", he said pointing to her face, "did you and the girls play with makeup?".

"No, why?"

"It's sorta all over your face", said Scott shaking his head, "even i can see it, and i can only see things in shades of red.Your hair looks...different too, and your also wearing Logan's hat".

"Oh dear god, i need to see a mirror!", she shouted.

This caused a chain reaction of the students waking up. When Jean yelled, it woke up Kurt, who lost his grip on the chandelier and fell on top of Sidney, waking her up and making her give a roar. Todd, who's head was close to Sidney's mouth, woke up with a yelp, jumping up in the air and landing on top of Pietro. Pietro screamed that the mummies were after him again and dashed behind Fred for safety, knocking the foot rest that Fred's head was on. Fred's head hit the ground with a thud and he woke up with a start, knocking the foot rest even further across the room with his hand. The foot rest hit the pile of junk Evan was sleeping under and he jumped up in a panic, sending out few spikes in shock. One of the spikes sailed across the room, impailing itself in the floor, right next to Kitty's head. Kitty sreamed in terror and leapt over Sidney and onto Lance. Lance woke up with a yell and a slight tremor ran through the ground, causing the pile of CD's Rogue was lying next to fall on top of her. Rogue's head popped up from underneath the CD's, she did NOT look happy. All of this happened in less that 10 seconds.

"Errrrr.....good morning", said Jean with a nervous chuckle, looking at the very angry faces of all the students she had woken up.

"What just happened?", asked Fred, rubbing his head.

"Lance Alvers ya'll have five seconds to live", said Rogue, picking herself up from the CD's.

"It isn't MY fault", said Lance, "Kitty jumped on me".

"Yeah well i would't have jumped on you if Evan hadn't nearly taken my head off with a spike", protested Kitty.

"Hey i only let out my spikes 'cause Freddy threw a foot rest at me", said Evan, pointing at Fred.

"Yeah, well Pietro knocked it over and made me hit my head", said Fred, "i got the bump to prove it".

"Well excuse ME", said Pietro from behind Freds back, "it's Todd's fault, he jumped on me, he knows i have bad dreams".

Everyone turned to scowl at Todd.

"It's not my fault, fer once", said Todd holding up his hands, "you guys would jump too if ya were asleep an' a tiger roared down ya ear".

The tiger gave a low growl and changed back into Sidney.

"Well i wouldn't have roared if Kurt hadn't fallen on me", she said, crossing her arms, "what sort of idiot sleeps dangling for a chandelier anyway?".

"Hey", said Kurt, "Jean voke me up, screaming about a mirror, i lost my grip".

The entire student body of the Xavier institute turned to stare at Jean.

"You painted my face!", said Jean in her defence, "guys?.., guys?..".

"Lets get her", said Evan, spiking up.

"Oh oh", said Jean, and ran screaming into the kitchen and hid behind Logan, "there going to kill me".

Logan just frowned and took his hat off Jeans head.

"I'll take that back", he said, with a chuckle.

"Why are they trying to kill you?", asked the professor, with a sigh, rubbing his head.

"'Cause i woke them up", said Jean with a sigh, "well actually they woke each other up, but i got the blame".

"Dont' worry about it Re....errr Green", said Logan, "they can't do too much more ta ya".

"Okay", said Jean, calming down, "hey what do you mean 'Green'?".

"Your hair is greener than Stink-boy's tounge", said Logan, smiling.


Jean ran upstairs.

"MY HAIR!, MY FACE!", Jean's voice came from upstairs, "I CAN'T GO TO SCHOOL TOMOROW LIKE THIS!".




A few hours and lots of shouting later found Kitty, Rogue and Sidney walking through the mall.

"I can't belive we got busted for what we did to Jean", said Sidney with a sigh.

"Yeah, it's like, so totally unfair", said Kitty, "now we have to go and buy her makeup remover and red hair dye with our own money!".

"Look on the bright side", said Rogue with a chuckle, "the guys have ta clean up the common room fer what they did ta Scott".

"Good point", said Kitty, "at least here we can still, like, window shop".

"Yeah, i guess", said Sidney with a sigh as they walked past a pet shop. The kittens in the window, upon seeing Sidney, all bounced over to the side of the glass, mewing and falling over each other to get to her.

"Wow, look at that", said Rogue, with a nod towards the kittens, "they really like ya'll Sid".

"Yeah", said Sidney with a sigh, tapping the glass, "you could say i have cat magnetism, you should see me when i go to the zoo".

"It must be, like, so toatlly cool to be able to talk to cats", said Kitty as the trio walked away, despite the kittens' protests, "i mean, like, what do they think about?".

"Well it's kinda hard to explain", said Sidney, "it not so much as words, but thought and feeling. Cats have no need for things like money or material possesions, so they tend to speak about what things feel like, than what they actually are. Trust me Kitty, there not big on conversation, you not missing much".

"Hey guys look at this", said Rogue, pointing to a book store.

Kitty and Sidney walked up to see Rogue pointing at a dusty old book intitled 'Great tales of terror and the supernatural'.

"That is a really cool book", said Rogue with a sigh, "a'h wish a'h could buy it".

"Turn away Rogue", said Sidney, patting her friend on the shoulder, "you can't afford it. We need to buy miss prefect her make up remover and hair dye".

"Not to mention replace all the make up we, like, used on her", said Kitty with a sigh.

"A'h know", said Rogue, waving to the book sadly, "bye bye book".

After a long trek, which lasted a good 3 hours, the girls had found everything on Jean's list except for a certain shade of eyeshadow.

"Look we'll never find it", said Rogue, shaking her head, "we've asked every make up shop assistant in the mall, it ain't anywhere".

"She's right", said Kitty, "i mean we ,like, found everything else. I don't think she'll miss ONE shade of eyeshadow".

"I don't know", said Sidney with a sigh, "this IS Jean were talking about".

"Well this is the last shop", said Kitty looking up at the beauty shop they had stoped in front of, "if it isn't here, i'm totally going home".

The girls entered the shop and Kitty went to the desk to ask about the eyeshadow. Rogue browsed around where the dark make up was, but Sidney just stared out of the window. She had no need for make up. She had tried it once when she was 13 and it had taken her months to get it ALL out of her fur. She swore off the stuff after that little episode. As she watched the shoppers walk by, she noticed a familiar face as he walked past. It was Pickles!. He stopped by the window and gave Sidney an evil grin and blew her a kiss before walking off. Sidney blinked before dashing out of the shop. She looked around wildly, but Pickles was nowhere to be seen. She was SURE she'd seen him. Rogue came running out.

"What is it Sid?", she asked, looking around, "what made ya'll freak out like that?".

"I saw Pickles", said Sidney, shaking her head, "or..... at least i think i did".

"Pickles?", said Rogue in shock, "ya'll sure?".

Sidney nodded, still looking around cautiously. She wished she could change into a cat form, then she'd have a better chance of trakcing the guy. But the mall was crowded, and there was no way she could do it without anybody seeing. Kitty walked out fo the shop with a bag in her hand.

"I found it", she said proudly, "like what happened to you guys?. Why'd you suddenly run off?".

"Sidney thought she saw Pickles", said Rogue.

"But i thought he'd, like, gone for good", said Kitty.

"So did i", muttered Sidney.

"Don't worry about it Sid", said Rogue with a smile.

"Yeah, well just, like, go and tell the professor, he'll sort it out", said Kitty.




Back at the institiute, the boys were cleaning up the comon room.

"Who knew girls could make such a mess!", said Evan with a sigh, crumpled up papers in a bin bag.

"Yeah, an' they say us guys are slobs", said Todd, shaking his head.

He and Kurt were currently standing on the ceiling, washing it.

"Ja vell at least ve didn't get grounded", said Kurt with a sigh, "Scott did though".

"Yeah", laughed Pietro as he moved quickly around the room with a wet cloth, "for 'unruly behaviour', i love it!".

"You would", said Lance as he and Fred came into the room carrying more furniture.

It was at this point that the girls burst in.

"Oh hello 'ladies', and i use that term loosley", said Pietro, "you can help us finish clearing up".

"Not yet Speedy", said Rogue, "Sidney saw Pickles at the mall".

"Your kidding", said Lance, shaking his head.

"No i'm not", said Sidney, hugging herself, "he was there, he even had the gall to blow a kiss at me".

"Are you okay Sid?", asked Todd, jumping down from the ceiling.

"Yeah, i guess", said Sidney, "i just need to tell the professor".

"Well we'll come with you", said Evan, putting down his bin bag.

"Yeah", said Fredd, nodding, "for ..morale support".

"You guys just want to, like, have a break from cleaning", said Kitty, rolling her eyes.

"Yeah, so?", said Pietro.

With that, they all left for the professors study.




The professor sighed after he heard what the teens had to say.

"The only way to be sure if it was Pickles or not is if i look into your memory Sidney", he said with a sigh, "if you sit here, i'll see what i can do".

"Okay professor", she said with a sigh, sitting down in front of the professor.

"Now just concentrate on when you saw him", said the professor, holding his hands up to Sidney's head.

Sidney nodded and concentrated. Immages falshed through the professors mind. The beauty shop, the people walking past, then, Pickles. The professor sighed and closed the telepathic gate between him and Sidney.

"Sidney is right", said the professor, placing his hands together, "it was indeed Pickles".

"Well what can we do Professor?", asked Evan, "i mean, this guy is a phsyco and he's walking along Bayville".

"The best thing you can do is carry on you lives as normally as possible", said Xavier, "keep up your guard and try to stay in groups or at least pairs. Don't go anywhere alone, if you have a class on your own, arrange to meet someone outside before leaving the room. I'll ask Logan to keep an eye on things and i'll see if i can contact your uncle Sidney, maybe he has a track on him".

The students nodded and went off to finish cleaning the room, each hoping that either Sabertooth or Logan would get to Pickles before he got to any of them.

Chapter 21 - Misguided desision.

Everyone went to school guared and on edge. No one really wanted to chance a confrontation with Pickles, so, as the professor had requested, they tried to stay in groups. Sidney took a deep breath before she entered the school building. She was more worried than the others, after all, it was HER that had been the cause of Pickles' mother's death. He'd be after her, she knew it. Her thoughts were interupted by Todd.

"Hey don't worry so much yo", he said with a smile, "he wont dare attack ya while i'm around" Besides, he won't use his powers here, its way too out in the open, he'll get caught".

"Yeah", said Sidney, still not convinced, "i guess your right".

"I know i'm right", said Todd with a laugh, "was there any ever doubt?".

"That makes a change", said Pietro, dashing up to the pair.

"What about him being right as opposed to you being right, all the time?", asked Sidney with a chuckle.

"Ahhhh", said Pietro, grinning in triumph, "so you admit that i'm right all the time".

"I didn't say...", started Sidney, but sighed in defeat, "forget it, i don't want to even start arguing with you".

"Whooooooo i win", shouted Pietro, doing a little dance, "like always".

"You only ever 'win' because people get sick of you pestering them", pointed out Evan, walking up to the group, "they just give in".

"Says you", shouted Pietro.

"Guys", said Sidney, getting between the two rivals, before a fight could start, "this isn't the time OR the place. So just chill out, okay?".

"Okay, sorry Sid", said Evan with a sigh.

"Good", said Sidney, walking off with Todd, "try not to kill each other okay?".

Pietro started to chuckle when Sidney and Todd were out of earshot.

"What?", said Evan irritably.

"You do realise that she's dating Todd don't you?", said Pietro.

"Yeah, so?", said Evan, crossing his arms, "you don't have to rub it in".

"So you still like her?",

Evan remained slient, and looked to the ground

"You DO still like her!", said Pietro with a laugh, "man, trust you to fall for someone who's already taken Daniels".

"Shut up Maximoff", muttered Evan, "i don't have to listen to this".

With that, he stormed off.

"But were supposed to stay in.....", Pietro started, but Evan was already gone, "oh boy".

Pietro gave a sigh. He wasn't worried about being alone, he could outrun anyone, even Pickles, but Evan..Pietro gave a groan of defeat and trailed behind his rival. He wouldn't let Evan hear him, but at least he could make sure that the guy didn't get into trouble, not that he cared, he told himself.

Evan stormed off outside the school and sat on a picnic bench, sulking. He sighed, he knew he shouldn't have feelings for Sidney, she was seeing Todd now, and obviously like him alot, but.. Suddenly a shadow fell over him, making him look up in shock. Standing there was someone he'd never seen before. The man was dressed in a buisness suit, with a scarf around his neck. The man had a very pale complection in contrst to very sharp blue eyes. His hair was a dirty blonde that Evan had only ever seen in one other person..

"May i sit here?".

Evans train of thought was interupted by the man's strange accent. He looked up and nodded glumly, not really sure why such an obviously wealthy man would be doing in Bayville, let alone the high school. The man nodded and sat down. He smiled at Evan and cocked his head.

"Lady troubles?", he asked.

Evan nodded with a sigh.

"You have no idea", he said, then looked up at the man, "err don't think i'm being rude, but who are you?".

"Oh, i apologise", said the man, holding out a hand, "i'm Daniel Toynbee".

Evan blinked at Daniel's hand before shaking it.

"Errr, i'm Evan".

"Pleasure to make your aquaintence", said Daniel with a smile, "so let me guess, you like a young lady who doesn't like you back?"

"Try she likes someone else", said Evan bitterly, putting his chin in his hands, "and only see's me as a friend".

"I see", said Daniel with a nod, "you know, young man, i may be able to help you with that problem".

"I doubt that", muttered Evan.

"Oh but i can help you", said Daniel, "i tell you what, you join me for lunch at, now what do you children call it?, oh yes, the 'gut bomb', and in exchange i will give you some advice on how to win that young ladies heart".

Evan looked up at Daniel suspisously.

"Sorry mister, but i promissed my professor that i wouldn't go anywhere alone", he said.

"I see", said Daniel standing up, "well i understand why you would wish to listento your professor. I can assure you, you would be in no danger near me. But i suppose you have made up your mind and i respect that. Well i wish you the best of luck with your lady friend".

Daniel gave Evan one last smile before starting to walk off. Evan sighed, everything in his gut told him to let Daniel walk off, not trust him. But then he thought about Sid. He'd give anything to be with her, even talk to this complete stranger. Besides, Daniel didn't SEEM dangerous.

"Wait", he said, standing up.

Daniel stopped. His back was turned away from Evan, so the young mutnat didn't see him smile.

"Follow me", he said, walking off.

Neither of them saw Pietro hiding in the shadows and running off.

"What are you talking about?", asked Scott, looking at a very hyped up Pietro, "slow down, i can't understand you when you talk quickly".

"He said that Evan's walked off with some guy to the gut bomb", said Lance, "he said he was going to help Evan charm Sid".

"I thought he was over her", said Jean, shaking her head.

"Obviously not", said Rogue, shaking her head.

"Well, we'd better go find him", said Scott, "who knows what sort of trouble he's gotten himself into. Go round up the others, we'll go together".

Evan had been driving around with Daniel in his limo for quiet a while. He looked up to see that they had stopped outside a warehouse.

"What we stop here for?", asked Evan, starting to think this wasn't such a good idea after all.

"I just need to make a buisness call", said Daniel stepping out.

"Okay man, i think i'm going home", said Evan, stepping out of the limo and looking around, where the heck was he?

"Oh no", said Daniel with a smirk, "your not going anywhere".

Evan started to spike-up, if he was going down, he was going down fighting. He didn't expect the attack from behind. His attacker hit him across the back of his head and he blacked out.

It didn't take long for the whole group to assemble and Jean was now leading the way, trying to find Evan telepahically.

"So, who did Evan, like, go with?", asked Kitty.

"Some guy", said Pietro, waving a hand, "something Toynbee i think".

Todd stopped dead in his tracks.

"David Toynbee?", he asked.

"Yeah thats it", said Pietro, "wow, how'd you kow".

Todd clenched his fists.

"He's Todd's father", said Sidney, putting a hand on Todd's shoulder.

"Wait a sec, i thought you said you were an orphan", said Lance.

"I might as well be", muttered Todd, shaking his head.

"Vell vhat vould he vant vith Evan?", asked Kurt

"Who knows?", said Todd, closing his eyes, "probably a way ta get at me".

"Guys were here", said Jean, pointing to a werehouse.

They entered slowly, looking around in the dim light. The place looked empty, but in a corner, tied up was Evan, unconcious.

"Hey Evan, can you hear us?", asked Scott, walking over and giving him a shake.

"I don't like this set-up", said Fred, looking around cautiously.

"Yeah", said Pietro, "it's way too easy".

Suddenly. they heard the door behind them slam shut. Everyone spun round to see Daniel Toynbee, smiling.

"What game are ya playin' wit' us 'dad'", said Todd, jumping over to stare at his father.

"Oh, no games at all son", said Daniel with a chuckle, "i'm just making a buisness deal".

Out of the shadows came Pickles.

"Ah, there you are", said Daniel with a smirk, "here, all present and accounted for. I've kept up MY end of the bargin, now you keep up yours".

"As if i'd back out of my end", said Pickles, "he's all yours".

"What are they talkin' about?", said Rogue, taking off her glove, getting ready for a fight.

"Like i said young lady", said Daniel with a smirk, "this is mearly a buisness deal. You young mutants in exchange for my son".

"Your kidnapin' me?", said Todd shaking his head, "oh great, real original dad".

"I warned you that it was a mistake to refuse my offer", said Daniel with a smirk, "now we can do this the easy way or the hard way".

"We never pick the easy way", said Lance.

His eyes rolled up in his head and he stuck out his arms, the ground began to shake violently.

"Wrong move", snarled Pickles.

He dove onto Lance, picking him up and hurling him across the werehouse, the ground tremor stopped as soon as Lance hit the wall.

"Lance!", shouted Kitty, running over to her unconcious boyfriend.

"Far as you go girly", said Pickles, taking a swipe at her, his hand passing right through her.

"Hah", said Kitty with a smile, "you can't touch something thats intangible".

"No?", said Pickes, picking up Lance, "but i don't think he's intangible".

"Don't hurt him", said Kitty.

Pickles gave an evil laugh and started to squease Lance in a bear hug.

"He's gonna kill him!", Kurt.

Scott frowned and put a hand to his visor, sending out an optic blast in Pickles' direction. The bean hit him, but had no effect.

"I'm invunerable remember?", said Pickles with a chuckle, "you'll have to to better than that".

"Oh a'h got somethin' better", shouted Rogue, running over to Pickles and grabbing his arm with her ungloved hand.

Pickles gave a roar of pain, dropping Lance and flinging Rogue aside. He stumbled for a second, but then shook his head clear.

"Like i said, you'll have to do better", he said with a smirk.

"Leave them out of this Pickles", snarled Sidney, "it's me you want".

"Yeah i want you, but your friends make a good extra", said Pickles with a laugh.

"Everyone, attack him with everything you've got", shouted Scott, firing several more optic blasts at Pickles.

"Now would be a good time Toynbee", shouted Pickles.

Daniel gave a nod before putting on a gas mask and pressing a button on the wall. A hissing sound was heard before gas poured into the werehouse.

"Its a tra...", was all that Pietro could manage before dropping to the ground.

Pickles chuckled as each mutnat dropped unconcious. He had no need for a gas mask, his powers saved him from the gas. Before long, the floor was littered with the sleeping forms of the X-men and Brotherhood. As the gas cleared, Daniel took off his gas mask.

"Pleasure doing buisness with you", he said with a smile, picking up Todd and flinging him over his shoulder, "you may just have saved my estate".

"Yeah, well the pleasure's all mine", said Pickles, "i get my revenge for my mother now. See you around Toynbee".

Daniel nodded and walked out of the werehouse, fligning Todd into his waiting limo. Pickles gave a growl of satifaction before locking the door of the werehouse, there was much to do before the young mutants woke up. Neither of them noticed Rogue slipping out of the building. She was glad she had absorbed Pickles' power when she had, it had saved her from the gas. She gabbed onto the limosine's bumper and hung on as the car drove away. As the car left the area she started to make menatl contact with the professor.

*Professor, can ya'll hear me?*

*Yes Rogue, what is it?*

*We gotta problem, the other have been kidnapped by Pickles there at some abndoned werehouse. Some guy, Todd's father he helped, he's takin' Todd somewhere*

*Logan, Storm and i will be at the werehouse as soon as we find it, but where are you?*

*A'hm goin' wherever Todd's goin'. I'll contact ya'll when we get there, then at least we'll have someone on the outside of where moneybags is takin' Todd*

*Okay Rogue, be carefull. The menatl reading i got off Mr Toynbee suggest he is willing to do anything to keep his family estate*

*A'hll be carefull professor*

*Good luck Rogue*

Rogue sighed and held onto the bumper, the car was picking up speed now, she just hoped she could hold on for long enough..


Chapter 22 - Imprisoned.



I opened my eyes and was almost blinded by the bright light. Man, my head hurt. It looked like i was in some sotra infirmary. I sighed as i tried ta figure out what had happened. I groaned as the memories came floodin' back. My father had crossed the line, big time. My friends were in who knew what sorta danger, and it was all my fault. No, it was all my dads fault. Suddenly a face appeared within inches of my own. I gave a squeak of terror and fell of the bed i'd been lyin' on.

"Oh, i am dreadfully sorry young Master", said a voice.

I looked up ta see an old guy in some sorta waiter getup. He looked like he was genuinley concerned about me, but i reminded myself that he was in leauge wit' my father. I frowned as the old guy leaned forward ta help me up.

"Stay away from me", i said, jerkin' my hand away from him.

The old man sighed, he looked heartbroken. I even started ta feel a twinge of guilt fer snappin' at the guy.

"I suppose i was not really expecting you to welcome me with open arms Sir", he said, shaking his head sadly, "i doubt that you even remember who i am".

I narrowed my eyes, i had no idea who this guy was, but he seemed ta know me.

"No i don't know who ya are", i said, standing up, "all i know is that ya helpin' my dad keep me locked up here".

The man sighed and gave a sad nod.

"Well, i AM under the employment of your father, i will admit it", he said, "my name is Martin. I must say, it is good to see you again Sir after all this time, despite the circumstances".

"Huh?", i said, blinking.

Oh great Todd, i mentaly berated myself, that makes ya sound REALLY threatening.

"I took care of you when you were a baby", explained Martin, "i watched you grow up, well until you were three years old anyway. It was an awfull shame that your father had to give you up".

"Yeah right", i muttered, "as if he didn't want ta get me out of his life".

I sighed and put my hand ta the back of my neck. My hand scraped across somethin' metal.

"What the heck?", i said.

I was wearin' some sorta metal colar.

"Oh, that", said Martin with a sigh, "i was hoping that you wouldn't find that so soon Sir".

"What is it?", i asked, trying to get the thing off, it was stuck tight.

"It's a collar that inhibits your...errr..special gifts", said Martin with a nervous chuckle, "your father ordered it to be made. I belive he gave some to his buisness partner, Mr Pickles as well".

"It stopes my mutant powers?", i said, shaking my head, "great, trust my dad ta do somethin' like this ta me".

I decided ta test it, just in case. I walked over ta the wall an' put my hand on it, it didn't stick. I jumped, but it was just an ordinary jump, no height at all. I groaned, boy did i hate my dad right now.

"So, what? I'm a prisoner here?", i asked with a sigh, banging my head against the wall.

"Prisoner is such a harsh word Master Mortimer...."

"My name is Todd", i said, what was it with these people?. They just wouldn't accept the fact that i'd changed my name.

"Oh...I appologise, you father did mention.."

"Look", i said, "i ain't really in the mood ta chat. I don't want ta be here, i want ta go home, i want ta help my friends".

"Would you like me to show you to your room Master Todd?", asked Martin, walking otwards the door.

"Like i have a choice?", i muttered followin' Martin out.




As i followed Martin along, i was surprised at the size of my former home. I couldn't remember it bein' THIS big. Heck, ya could park the entire Xavier mansion in the main hall of this place.

"Here we are Sir", said Martin, opening a door.

Despite the fact that i was bein' kept here against my will, i had ta admit, it was one big room. It was even bigger than the room that i'd had at the X-geeks place. I shook my head clear, remindin' myself that i was here as a priosner.

"I trust the room is to your liking young Master?", asked Martin, hovering by the door.

"Yeah, whatever", i said with a shrug.

What was with all of this 'Master' an' 'Sir' stuff?. I sure wasn't used ta bein' talked to like that. Ireally wanted ta go back ta Bayville. Sidney was in danger an' i knew that Pickles wouldn't hesitate ta hurt her. If he did anything ta her i'd.. I sighed and looked out of the window, i was on the ground floor. I could get out of here easy, powers or not. All i had ta do was wait fer the old man ta leave an..

"Oh he's awake at last".

I spun round ta see my father standing in the doorway. It took all my self-control not ta thro myself at the guy's throat there an' then. Instead, i just scowled at him.

"Thats funny. I thought i heard a buzzin' sound", i said, narrowin; my eyes, "like a mosquito".

"Ah i see we still hold a little resentment", said dad with a smirk, "i am sure it will wear off when you settle in".

"I don't WANT ta settle in", i said, crossin' my arms, "i hope ya realise the danger ya put my friends in. The danger ya put the girl i love in".

Did i just say love?. I loved Sid?. Oh great, my feelin's had perfect timin', as always.

"I made a business deal", said my dad, as pomus as ever, "what Mr Pickles does with those mutnats is none of my buisness. And as for love, hah, the only girls you'll have a chance to meet will be of a high society. I refuse to have...mongrels in my family".

"Don't you EVER call my girlfriend a mongrel", i snarled, i was gettin' very close ta smakin' him in the mouth, "an' it's gonna be your buisness, 'cause once i get out...".

"Oh please", said dad, wavin' his hand in the air, "you honestly belive i would let you walk around here if i knew you could escape?. That collar around your neck not only inhibits your..condition, but if you step foot outside this house, it will trigger and alarm system. My guards will be around you before you can get to the main gate".

"What!", i said, lookin' up, "ya know ya can't lock me up an animal at a zoo".

"I am your father. I can do as i iwsh", said dad, then turned to Martin, "come Martin, lets leave my son to his thoughts. I want you to guard his door".

"Yes Sir", said Martin, then gave me a bow, "master Todd".

With that, both adults left my room. I sighed an' sat on the windowsill. I reached my hand ta my neck and felt the collar again. There had ta be a way ta get it off. My hand finally found a keyhole, no doubt my father had the key. I sighed and cloaed my eyes, leanin' my head on the window, i was startin' ta give up hope of gettin' outta here. The odds were pretty much stacked against me. I was probably gonna loose Sid, all because of my father an' his stupid estate. My thoughts were interupted by someone knockin' on the window. I turned my head ta see what was makin' the noise. Was that Rogue?. Sure enough, Rogue's head popped up from the flowerbed.

"Rogue?", i asked, blinkin' in surprise as i opened the window and Rogue fell inside with a thud.

"Hey Swamp-breath, nice collar", she said with a smile.

"Trust me, it as nasty as it looks", i said with a sigh, "how the heck did ya get here?".

"Ah grabbed onta ya daddy's cars bumper", said Rogue with a grin, "ya'll woudln't belive how long ah've had ta hang on fer. A'hm glad a'h wear gloves".

"But what about the gas?", i asked.

"Ah absorbed Pickles' powers remember?", said Rogue, " it didn't effect me. They didn't even notice a'hd slipped out. Ah've contacted the profesoor, they shoulde be lookin' fer the werehouse by now. A'h thought a'hd come an' bust ya'll outta here though".

"Since when did you care what happens ta me?", i asked, a little suspisous.

"In case ya'll forgot Todd", said Rogue, putting her hands on her hips, "a'h WAS a member of the Brotherhood family once. Ya'll like the irritatin' little brother a'h never had".

"Oh gee, i'm touched", i said chucklin'.

"So lets go already", siad Rogue, "a'h think that they'll need all ahnds on deck back at Bayville".

"I can't go outta the house until this thing comes off", i said, pointing at the collar, "it stops my mutant powers an' it'll trigger off an alarm as soon as i leave the buildin'"

"Well we'll just have ta get it off", said Rogue with a shrug, "ah might have a bit of Pickles' power laft a'h could try ta snap it off".

"Or...", i said backin' away slightly, "we could go find the key an' avoid me havin' a broken neck".

"Good point", said Rogue with a nod, "but have ya'll seen how big this place is?. It'd take us forever ta find...."

"Is everyhting okay in there Sir?", came Maritns voice through the door.

"Oh oh, not good", i said.

The door handle unlocked and it started ta open.

"Under the bed", i hissed ta Rogue.

Rogue nodded and dived under the bed, just as Martin entered.

"Is everything alright in here Sir?", asked Martin again, looking around, "i thought i heard voices".

"Voices?", i said with a nervous laugh, "nope, no voices here".

"My ears must be deciving me in my old age", said Martin, his feet were dangerously close to my bed.

Suddenly Rogue's hand shot out and grabbed Matin's ankle. He gave a surpirsed gasp before he fell ta the ground unconcious. Rogue pulled herself from under the bed and dusted herself off.

"Well thats the door guard down", she said with a smirk.

"Ya know Roguey", i said, shakin' my head, "ya really sacre me sometimes".

"Yeah, well ya'll can be nice ta me now", said Rogue with an evil grin, "this guy looked after ya'll when you were a baby. A'hve got blackmail stories on ya'll now".

"You wouldn't!", i said, my eyes widening.

Rogue mearly gave an evil laugh and walked out of the room.

"Do ya'll want ta get outtta here or not Swamp-breat?", i heard her shout.

I rolled my eyes and walked out, leavin' Martin on the floor.




"Have ya got ANY idea where were goin'", i asked Rogue, who was storming ahead.

"Yeah, that Martin guys knows where the key's kept", she said with a smile, "ain't i handy dandy?".

"Great", i said, "so where is it yo?".

"Errr, thats the bad part", said Rogue, "its in ya dads study".

"Figures", i muttered rollin' my eyes.

We'd turned the corner again and came face to face with a housemaid.

"Oh", she said in shock, pointin' at me, "your not supposed to be out here".

"Don't ya'll worry about it", said Rogue, tapping the maid on the forehead and knocking her out, "ya'll wont remember it until were outta here".

"Your enjoying this WAY too much Roguey", i said shakin' my head.

"Hey, knockin' out members of your fathers staff is like a sport ta me", she said with a chuckle, then stopped at a door, "here we are".

I took a deep breath and opened the door cautiously. The room was empty, but sitting on my fathers desk was the key.

"Dont ya'll think this is too easy?", asked Rogue, stepping in and lookin' around.

"Hey don't look a gift horse in the mouth", i said, pickin' up the key, "try ta contact the professor will ya while i get this thing off".

Rogue nodded and closed her eyes in concentration, i saw her head nod as she made mental contact with Xavier. I stuck the key in the lock and turned it, the collar fallin' off real quickly and droppin' ta the floor. There were no alarms nothin'. I blinked and sent out my tounge, sure enough, it flew across the room and hit the vase on mt dads desk. My powers were back!. Rogue opened her eyes and smiled at me.

"Theyv'e got our location", she said with a grin, "Storm'll be here with the blackbirld in a few minutes. We gotts get outside ta meet her".

"Fair enough", i said, opening the window, we were on the second floor now, but it wasn't a problem now that i had my powers back, "grab onta my back Roguey, i'll get us down".

Suddenly the door began ta open.

"Uh oh, busted", said Rogue, jumping onto my back and holdin' on fer dear life.

"Not if i can help it yo", i said, jumping down from the window just as the door opened.

I landed easily. Rogue clambered off my back and looked up. The sound of footsteps could be heard until they stopped. My fathers yell ran through the grounds.

"I guess he found the collar", said Rogue with a shrug.

"Guess so", i said with a smile.

The sound of the blackbird could be heard nearing the grounds. I gave an evil grin. There was one more thing i had ta do. I jumped up ta the window and stuck to the wall. My dad was staring at the colar on the floor.

"Yo dad", i shouted, he turned to face me, "ya can't cage up the Toad".

His eyes widened and he ran towards me. I grinned and sent out a gloop of slime at his face, causing him to fall over. I chuckled and leapt back down to stand next to Rogue.

"That was mature", she said, shaking her head.

"Come on, ya can't tell me he didn't deserve it", i said.

"Ya'll right, he did deserve it", she said, "come on, the blackbirds landed down there".

We ran over to where the balckbird was standing, only to be cut off by Martin. He looked at us and smiled. I was sure he was gonna hand me back ta my dad. Then he did the weirdest thing, he stepped aside.

"I'd go quickly if i were you Master Todd", he said, "before your father sends out his security after you".

"Thanks man", i said, with a nod, running past him with Rogue. We made it to the waiting blackbird and jumped in.

"Good to see you two back", said Storm from the controls, "we'd better go to the werehouse, i belive Charles and Logan will need our asistance".

I sighed and collapsed in a chair, lookin' outta my window at my dads home. Martin was waving at me, i gave him a wave before the blackbird sped off. I just hoped we wouldn't be too late ta help Sid and the others.  I closed my eyes and waited for the jorney to end. I never did like airplanes.


Chapter 23 - Making a deal.



Kurt sighed and swished his tail around the bars of the cell he and the other mutants were kept. Most of them had already woken up, with the exception of Jean and Kitty. Evan was sulking in the corner, banging his head on the wall. Kurt stood up and walked over to him. Evan sighed and looked up at Kurt.

"I'm an idiot", he said.

"Vell, i vont argue vith you there", said Kurt, sitting down.

"Oh great, thanks for the support man", said Evan, closing his eyes.

"You know Daniels, you really know how to mess things up", said Pietro, who was leaning agaisnt the wall, "i mean you could have a degree in it".

"Shut up Maximoff", muttered Evan.

"Why don't you all just quit it", said Scott with a frown.

Everyone was silent for a while, and then Pietro stood up and started pacing the cell.

"I can't take this anymore", he shouted, "i mean, with this collar i have to do things at normal speed. I don't do slow. I'm going to go nuts. It feels like everythings in slow motion".

"Stop hyperventalating Speedy", said Lance, who was cuddling the sleeping Kitty.

"Yeah man, take a breath", said Fred, shaking his head.

"Okay, i'm calm, i'm cool", said Pietro in a shaky voice, "i can cope, i....i need a hug!".

Kitty stired in her sleep and opened her eyes.

"So it, like, wasn't just a dream", she muttered, "thanks alot Evan".

"Oh please rub it in more", said Evan, throwing his hands in the air, "it was a stupid mistake. Give me a break already".

"Well it was a pretty stuipd thing to do", said Scott, "what possesed you to follow a complete stranger?".

"Well i...", started Evan, then sighed and closed his eyes, "i'm sorry okay?".

Sidney had been listening to this from the other side of the cell, her arms crossed and her tail twiching irritably.

"I just can't belive you did this to try and get me", she said with a frown.

"But i..i like you", said Evan, "and i..i..i'm an idiot".

"You keep telling yourself that", said Lance, "maybe it'll change the problem that were in".

"Well, i just hope you realise that i want to be with Todd and no one else", said Sidney, closing her eyes.

"Are you certain about that sweet thing?".

Everyone looked up to see a smirking Pickles.

"Get lost looser", warned Fred, standing up.

"You can't do anything to me in there Lard-boy", said Pickles with a laugh, "And those collars are a great help. That Toynbee fellow knows where to get good merchendise. I think i got the better half of the deal, all of you just for that freaky Frog-boy".

"Don't insult my boyfriend", said Sidney with a low growl.

Pickles mearly laughed and leaned against the cell bars.

"You'll soon forget all about him", he said, "once i've seduced you, you wont even remember Froggie's name. We were made for each other".

"You wish", Sidney snarled.

"Be like that" said Pickles, " like them firery. But bear in mind, i could give you more than the Toad could even dream of giving you".

Sidney narrowed her eyes and looked like she was about to retort something when she suddenly grinned.

"Really?", she asked seductivley, leaning against the bars and trailing a finger across Pickles' chest.

Pickles was taken off guard by this sudden change in behaviour but then gave a feral growl.

"So your finally seeing the light Octavia", he said, running his finger across her cheek.

"Maybe i am", she said, threading her tail through the cell bars and wrapping it around Pickles' waist, "your right, maybe we ARE made for each other".

The rest of the imprisoned mutnats were watching this with dumbfounded expressions.

"What the heck is she doing?", whispered Kitty.

"I don't know", said Lance watching Sidney, open-mouthed, "but she can keep on doing...ouch!".

He turned to face an irritated Kitty punching him repeatedly on the shoulder. Pickles meanwhile was still grinning at Sidney.

"You know, i'm sure we could get to know each other better if you let me out of this cage" said Sidney with a purr and grabbing the bars.

"Well that would be breaking the rules", said Pickles making a tutting sound.

"But what can i do to you with this collar on?", asked Sidney, pointing to the collar, "besides, your so big, strong and muscular, i'd have no chance of escaping you".

Pickles looked thoughtfull for a second before reaching into his pocket and pulling out some keys. He put the keys in the lock and opened the cell door, letting Sidney slip out before locking it shut again. Sidney gave a purr before sitting on the desk across from the cell, letting her tail swish over the side.

"Traitor", muttered Fred.

"Yeah, like, how could she do this to us?", said Kitty, crossing her arms, "i thought we were friends".

Pickles ignored the captured mutants and stalked over to Sidney.

"What about that Toad guy that you like so much?", he asked when he got over to her.

"Toad who?", Sidney asked, twirling her finger in Pickles' hair, "all i see is you".

"Just what i thought", said Pickles with a feral grin, wrapping his arms around Sidney's waist, "you know i never would have guessed that you would have come round to see..."

"Shhhh", said Sidney, putting a finger on Pickles' mouth, "you talk too much".

Then, much to the astonishment of the captured mutants and Pickles, she leaned over and kissed the guy. When they pulled away, Pickles grined.

"Well that was unexpected i bet...."

He was interupted by the sound of a vehincle pulling up outside. He sniffed the air.

"Looks like we've got company", he said, then turned to Sidney, "to be continued. You just stay there until i've dealt with the Wolverine".

With that, he ran a finger under Sidney's chin and ran off for the door of the werehouse to confront Logan. As soon as the door closed Sidney stood up and walked over to the cell door.

"Who do you think you are?", said Kurt shaking his head, "going off after Pickles like that!".

"Yeah, why should you even talk to us traitor", said Lance, narrowing his eyes.

"Oh ye of little faith", said Sidney rolling her eyes.

"What are you talking about?", said Kitty, "Pickles is going to, like, totally get Mr Logan. You've betrayed us and we havent, like, got a chance of getting out of here".

Sidney chuckled and reached into her pocket, she pulled out the keys to the cell and the collars.

"You don't hand around with Todd for as long as i have without learning how to be a good pickpocket", she said with a smirk, "now do you want out of here or not?".

"Okay, maybe we stand a little chance", pointed out Fred.

"I'm going to, like, flush my head down the toilet now", said Kitty.

"Don't bother", said Sidney, unlocking the cell door, "it'd take too much time. Now come on, line up and let me get you guys out of here".

It didn't take long for Sidney to realease all of her friends and herself from the collars.

"I can run again!", shouted Pietro with glee, speeding around the werehouse.

"Ja your the best Sid!", said Kurt, teleporting to her side.

"Yeah, yeah, just promise you'll never tell Todd how i got the keys and we'll call it even okay?".

"Lets go out and help Logan", said Scott, running to the door.




The mutants ran out of the door to see Logan and Pickles circling each other.

"Hey lover boy", shouted Sidney.

Pickles looked up.

"You?", he said, "".

This was enough to give Logan the chance to punch Pickles to the floor. Pickles snarled and got up. Ignorning Logan, he ran over to Sidney and threw her to the ground. He snarled and lifted a foot to stamp down on her when a figure knocked him away.

"Uncle Vic!", said Sidney with a smile, looking up at Sabertooth.

"Did i miss the party?", he said with a smirk, helping Sidney up.

"Ya got good timin' bub", muttered Logan.

Pickles gave a roar of rage and jumped up again. He picked up a metal pipe and lifted it to hit Sidney, only he couldn't move his arm. Jean was closing her eyes, concentrating stoping the pipe from moving. Pickles snarled and dropped the pipe and instead grabbed the first thing that came to his hand. Unfortunatley, it was Kurt. Kurt gave a yell of surprise.


A second later, Pickles found himself 30 feet in the air. Kurt smiled and pulled out of his reach. He gave Pickles a wave before teleporting away. Pickles dropped to the ground with a thud. He lay still for a long while. The mutants gathered around him.

"Is he...dead?", asked Fred.

Logan sniffed the air around Pickles.

"I...don't think so", he said.

Suddenly, Pickles' arm shot out and grabbed Scott's visor. Scott gave a shout and closed his eyes before anyone got hurt. Pickle gave a chuckle and crushed the visor in his hand.

"Why won't this guy die?", snarled Sabertooth.

Pickles grinned and stood up.

"You can't hurt me", he said, "i'm invincable. You can't even...".

He was interupted by the rumble of thunder.

"Oh oh", was all he could manage before a lightning bolt struck him down to the ground.

Through the clouds appeared the blackbird, it landed and Storm, Rogue and Todd clambered out.

"Todd, your okay!", said Sidney happily.

"Hey, we amphibians are resiliant", said Todd with a grin.

Pickles groaned and stood up.

"Why don't ya get outta here fer good bub", said Logan, "ya outnumbered here. This is the only chance i'm givin' ya ta get outta town fer good".

"It isn't over, until it's over", said Pickles with a laugh.

"You asked fer it bub", said Logan, unleashing his claws.

Logan ran towards Pickles with a snarl but was cut short by a gun blast, knocking him down. Everyone turned to see Daniel Toynbee holding a very large gun.

"This thing is designed to harm only mutants", he shouted, "lets say i have friends in high places. If any of you make another move, i will shoot every last one of you. Pickles, get into my helecopter, it's waiting around the back".

Pickles grinned while all the mutants around him stood helpless.

"I want something first", he said, walking over to Sidney and picking her up.

Todd leapt from his positon and landed on Pickles' shoulders, making Pickles bluckle under the pressure of his strong legs.

"Put her down NOW", warned Todd.

"Oh, now i see", said Daniel  with a smirk, "this is the girl that you care so much about. You know Todd, i could have her seriously harmed".

Daniel clicked his fingers and Pickles threw Todd off his shoulders and put Sidney in a bear hug. Her pain filled screams were more than Todd could stand.

"Stop it", he said, clenching his fists, "leave her alone".

Daniel clicked his fingers and Pickles stopped, but still had hold of Sidney.

"What do you say we make a deal then, son?", said Daniel with a grin, "prove how much you care about her".

"What are ya talkin' about dad?", asked Todd narrowing his eyes.

"A simple exchange", said Daniel, "your life for hers. You come back home with me, and stay there this time, and she will not be harmed, ever".

"Don't listen to him Todd", said Sidney from the floor, "it's not worth it".

Todd sighed and closed his eyes before looking up at his father.

"Do ya swear that she won't ever get hurt?. That this Pickles guy won't go near her ever again?".

"You have my word son. As long as you stay at home and take over my estate", said Daniel, then held out his hand, "do we have a deal?".

Todd looked down at Sidney for a second before sighing and taking his fathers hand.

"Deal", he said with narrowed eyes.

"No Todd, don't", said Sidney, trying to stand up, only to fall down again.

"You have my buisness sense son", said Daniel with a smirk, "you made a good decisison. Pickles, lets go, shall we".

"I, like, need a kleenex", said Kitty burying her face in Lance's shirt.

Pickles muttered under his breath and walked off.

"I want ta say goodbye first", said Todd.

"Fair enough", said Daniel, standing aside.

Todd walked passed his father and knelt down by the now crying Sidney.

"Hey, i ain't seen ya cry fer a long time", he said, wiping a tear off her cheek.

"Don't leave me", wimpered Sidney.

"I'm not gonna let ya get hurt, just because of my father an' my pride", said Todd with a sigh, "ya more important ta me than that".

Sidney threw her arms around Todd's neck and hugged him tightly.

"Why are you putting yourself into this mess for me?", she said, "you hate your father and what he stands for".

"Yeah i do hate my father", admited Todd, "but i love you more".

"Come along Todd, it's time to go", said Daniel.

Todd sighed and gave Sidney a kiss before standing up and walking away with his father. The mutants watched, dumstruck. Sidney stood up and watched them go.

"I love you too", she said quietly, then turned away, tears in her eyes, unable to watch him leave anymore.



Chapter 24 - A missing piece.




The mutants stood around speechless. They couldn't belive what had just happened. Those that didn't know Todd well were dumbstruck over how noble he'd been. Those that did know him...they were filled with a feeling of dread that they would never see their friend again. Sidney was sitting on her own away from the group, she felt that her heart had been torn out of her chest then stomped on right in front of her eyes. She buried her face in her hands, it wasn't often that she cried. She prided herself on being strong and tough, but this was too much for even her to bear. She suddenly felt a hand on her shoulder, she looked up to see Evan, she couldn't help but narrow her eyes at him.

"What do YOU want?", she asked, a little more nastly than she had planed.

Evan stepped back a little, shocked at Sidney speaking like that.

"I...", he started, then sighed, "i'm sorry, i really am".

"Yeah, well being sorry doesn't bring Todd back does it?", snapped Sidney, standing up and staring at Evan, tears still in her eyes, "how could you do this to me? Some friend you are. You wanted me and Todd to be apart?, well wish granted buddy".

"I didn't want...", said Evan, "well, i..i never wanted this to happen. I only wanted to know..".

"To know what Evan?", said Sidney, crossing her arms, "how to steal me away from Todd?. Well heres a news flash for you, you didn't steal my heart, you broke it".

Sidney gave a growl and stalked away from Evan and into the blackbird. Evan watched her go and sighed. He couldn't belive what he had done, he never wanted to hurt Sidney like this. He'd ruined everything for her and Todd, he knew how much they cared about each other, and he'd been selfish and pig headed. He closed his eyes and sat down, right now he was ready to plunge on of his own spikes into his own heart for what he'd done.

"Don't blame yourself Porcupine", said Logan walking up to him and sitting down, "it wasn't your fault kid".

"Yes it was", said Evan, shaking his head, "i've destroyed the relationship of two people who were made for each other. I'm a horrible person".

"Kid", said Logan with a sigh, "ya not a horrible person. Ya a lovesick teenager. Unfortunatley fer you, you fell in love with a girl who's heart belonged ta someone else".

"Sidney hates me", muttered Evan.

"Listen up, let me give ya some wisdom i learned from life on the road", said Logan with a chuckle, "a girl can stay mad at ya for a long, long time, but they wont hate ya forever, just keep outta her way. Her heart'll heal in time".

Evan looked up at Logan, surprised to hear something so sensitive from the noramly gruff mutant.

"Okay, i guess", said Evan with a sigh, he saw out of the corner of his eye Sabertooth heading into the blackbird. Obviously to try and comfort Sidney, Evan hoped that Sabertooth could do a better job than him.




Sidney was curled up on one of the blackbird seats crying her eyes out. She knew she shouldn't have been that hard on Evan, but, she had lost the most important person in the world to her, she needed someone to blame. She heard someone enter the jet and looked up to see her uncle walking towards her.

"You okay kiddo?", he asked.

"No", said Sidney, rubbing her eyes, "iv'e just lost my best friend and the guy  i love all in one day".

Sabertooth nodded glumly and sat down next to his niece.

"Listen", he said with a sigh, putting his arm around Sidney's shoulder, "you'll see him again. Remember what ya mom used ta say?".

"Always pack a sweater?", aksed Sidney with a raised eyebrow.

"No, not that one", said Sabertooth, waving his hand in the air, "true love will always find a way".

Sidney blinked and sighed.

"I guess your right uncle Vic", she said with a sniffle then burried her head in his coat, "but i miss him soo much. I'm afraid about what there going to do to him. I mean, they could torture him, or lock him up or..or...".

She started to cry again.

"Shhh shhh i know, i know", said Sabertooth, hugging her then he put his hand on her chin and brought her head up, "dont' cry too much okay?. Keep ya chin up, it'll all turn out alight".

"Yeah, i guess", said Sidney.

"Thats the spirit", said Sabertooth, "lets see that winnin' smile huh?".

Sidney gave a reluctant smile.

"Thats better", said Sabertooth.

"Thanks uncle Vic", she said, gving him a hug, "i really needed to talk to someone".

"Anytime kiddo", said Sabertooth huggin her back, "keep ya head up fer me okay?".

"I'll try", said Sidney.

"Thats my girl", said Sabertooth, kissing her forehead, "oh and one more thing, don't be too hard on the porcupine. It wasn't his fault, he's did it fer you".

"I know", said Sidney with a sigh, "i'll talk to him later".

"Okay", said Sabertooth walklking away, before he left the jet he turned around, "and Sidney, everythings gonna be..".

"Yeah, i know", said Sidney with a smile.

Sabertooth grinned and waved before climbing out of the jet. Sidney sighed and closed her eyes as everyone entered the jet to go back to the mansion. She looked out of the window to see her uncles' motorbike speed off in the distance. She also noticed Evan getting in the x-van with Logan, she didn't blame the guy, after the way she had talked to him. She noticed everyone else in the jet were seeming to give her a wide berth as well, which suited her just fine, she wanted to be alone right now.




By the time they got home, everyone was feeling a little down-hearted. Sidney was in the professors study with Logan, and Xavier.

"So when are we going to go get him back?", asked Sidney, crossing her arms.

"Well....", said the professor with a sigh, "we can't really stage a rescue mission until tomorow. And even then Todd and his father made a deal. We may be rid of Pickles for good".

"What?", said Sidney, throwing her arms in the air, "you mean to tell me your willing to let Todd stay with his nutcase of a father, just so you won't be bothered by Pickles?".

"Tiger", said Logan, standing up, "ya know that Pickles is a big probelm fer us, if we weren't stalked by him, we wouldn't have ta watch our backs twenty four seven".

"But what about Todd?", asked Sidney closing her eyes.

"Well i think the frog has a better life there than here", said Logan, "he's a heir ta a big fortune over with his father. I bet before long, he'll have forgotten about this place".

"How can you say that?", shouted Sidney, clenching her fists, "Todd loves me, and i love him. I'm not going to leave him, even if i have to go and rescue him myself".

"We will find him", said the professor, "but don't put your hopes up, one can have a change of heart very easily".

"Oh your just saying that 'cause you don't like Todd", muttered Sidney, "see this i why i left you guys in the first place!".

She stormed off towards the door.

"Just remember Sidney. They say it is alot better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all", said the professor.

"Yeah?", said Sidney, opening the door, "well whoever said that obviously never went through it".

With that she slammed the door and stormed upstairs.

"What are we gonna do Chuck?", asked Logan with a sigh.

"We will have to find Toad", said Xavier, putting his hands together, "or we may loose Sidney too".





A few hours later, everyone was sitting down to dinner, except for Sidney, who hadn't come down from her room since talking to the professor and Logan.

"I hope she's okay", said Lance, looking up at the ceiling, "its not like Sidney not to eat".

"I'm sure she'll be, like, fine", said Kitty, her voice showing she didn't really belive herself.

Kurt had been aimlessely picking at what was left of his meal. No one else had gone upstairs to talk to Sidney yet, and he was starting to worry about her. Kurt decided that someone needed to cheer her up, and who better than 'the goof-man'. He jumped off his chair and grabbed a plate of food, maybe he could persuade her to eat something.

"Kurt, you can't want to eat any more", said Jean with a sigh, "you've already eaten.....".


Kurt teleported in front of Sidney's door and knocked on it.

"Go away", came Sidney's muffled voice.

"Sidney, eets me, Kurt", he said, "do you vant to talk?".

"Do i have to?".

"Eeet vould make you feel better".

Kurt heard Sidney sigh and walk across the room and open the door. She looked very downhearted.

"Come on in", she said sadly.

Kurt nodded and walked into her room.

"Are you feeling okay?", he asked.

"Iv'e been better", said Sidney, "i miss him so much".

"Ja", said Kurt with a nod, "even I miss Todd. Heck, i never thought i'd say those vords".

Sidney gave a slight smile.

"See i knew i could make you smile", said Kurt with a chuckle.

"Yeah", said Sidney with a sigh, "thanks Kurt".

"Hey, i brought you some food", he said, holding out the plate, "you hungry?".

"Famished", said Sidney, taking the plate, "i didn't want to go downstairs. I can't face everyone yet".

"Okay", said Kurt, "i'll leave you alone then?. As long as you promise to cheer up".

"I will", said Sidney with a slight chuckle, "thanks for the food Kurt, i'll come down later, i promise".

Kurt nodded and left the room. Sidney sighed and took the plate to her dresser and sat down to eat. She turned her head and saw the picture of her and Todd as kids. She smiled slightly. She was determined she'd get him back, with or without her friends.




Sidney's meal gave her the strength she needed to go downstairs again. She walked into the kitchen to put her plate with the others to be washed. As she walked passed the table, the other looked up and watched her.

"Hey, are you okay Sid?", asked Fred.

"Yeah, i guess", said Sidney with a sigh, " just feel kinda, i don't know, helpless".

"We'll find him you know", said Pietro with a smile, "he's a member of the Brotherhood!. We don't leave our own behind".

"I know", said Sidney, "thanks guys".

"Well go first thing in the morning", said Lance, standing up, "even if we have to do it without the X-men".

"Your NOT doin' it without the X-men", said Logan, walking in, "were all goin' together".

"Thats not just an empty promise is it?", asked Sidney with a frown.

"No, its not", said Xavier wheeling into the kitchen, "but i do want you all to be rested before we go to confront Todd's father. He will have Pickles with him and we will be facing quite a fight".

"We can take him", said Scott, standing up, "if we all fight together".

"Yeah, so what if we DO defeat him?", said Jean, frowning, "he'll just come back once he's rested like before".

"I already have a plan for Pickles", said the Professor with a sigh, "though i'd rather not do it, i fear we have no choice".

"What are you going to do?", asked Evan.

"Hes goin' ta Stokes Maximum Security Facility", said Logan.

"Isn't that vhere Jugernaut is?", asked Kurt his eyes wide.

"Yes", said Xavier, closing his eyes, "if celular poralisis bio fluid can stop my brother, it should be able to stop Pickles. That is IF we can get him there. Thats why i will acompany you, i hope after he's fought with all of you, my phycic blasts could stop him. But it must be a team effort, Brotherhood and X-men alike".

"No problem", said Lance, "we can cope fighting with you guys to get Todd back".

"Good", said the professor with a smile, "now i suggest you all get some sleep, we have quite a battle tomorow".

The students nodded wearliy and plodded upstairs to their rooms. As she passed the professor Sidney smiled.

"Thank you porfessor, you don't know how much this means to me", she said.

"Your welcome Sidney", said the professor, "now get some rest, you'll need it".

Sidney nodded and headed up to her room, she just hoped that she could get some sleep.

"Well i hope ya know what ya puttin' yaself in fer Charles", said Logan.

"I do", said the professor, "i trust you have no problems with me contacting Sabertooth, the more we have on our side the better".

"I'm not happy with it", said Logan, "but i'll just have ta cope with it until Pickles is outta the way. But it won't change anythin' between us".

"I wasn't expecting it", said the professor with a chuckle, heading to his room.