Notes: I read the 350 word challenge, just after I'd been looking at a recent gift, wondering how I could fit it into a story, and this happened. Sorry ;-)

A Small Addiction
by Poi Lass

A mouse.

A vibrating mouse.

Hank pulled the string in the toy's tail again, and cupped it in his hands as it jiggered its way back to stillness and silence.

A vibrating mouse?

He pulled the string once again as he cautiously held it up to his face, furry nose to furry nose.

"What a bizarre gift." He murmured aloud as it stopped again.

Who would give him a vibrating mouse? And why?

Then again, maybe it hadn't been meant for him...? He picked up the wrapping paper, and looked it over. No, look, there. HANK, it said. Capital letters, scrawled on the paper. No card.

It was probably from Robert.

He pulled the string again, absently.

It was the sort of present Robert would give someone, and he was the sort of person to give someone a bizarre and useless present for no particular reason. In fact, until Bastion had cleared out the mansion, Hank had had an entire drawer devoted to the bizarre and useless presents Bobby had given him over the years.

He rather missed them, actually.

The mouse stopped. He pulled the string again.

Then again, Robert didn't often bother to wrap his gifts. And, further, the fact that he hadn't personally presented it to Hank, and wasn't currently bouncing up and down in front of him, waiting to see his reaction, also suggested someone else.

So. A little deduction was in order.

It couldn't be Ororo. It just wasn't ... her. Rogue or Kitty would have wrapped it better. Logan wouldn't have wrapped it at all. Kurt?

Hank scratched his head and pulled the string again. Well. Kurt might. He frowned dubiously. But - no, Kurt was visiting Amanda. And Remy had vanished again. Peter? Doubtful.

Charles? ... No. Just -- no.

He pulled the string again.

"Hank. What is that?"


"Hey, it vibrates. That's cute. Can I -"


"Oookay. Possessive much?" Hank ignored him, petted the mouse reassuringly. And pulled the string.

And sighed. Definitely not Robert then. Who else was there?

Sarah stood outside Medlab, and smiled a little as the sound of a toy mouse vibrating started over again.

"There." She muttered. "See? I can do nice."


Oh, look, I never said it would make sense. I said it was 350 words long, and actually, I lied about that too. It's 371 ;-).
(And yes, I do have a vibrating mouse, and it is addictive.)

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