Orla: Hello! This time I'm doing the introduction (applaud
or die now, thank you) The only way I could do this is by tying Jaelle
up with tape. What's that Jaelle? Sorry, I don't know what "Mmmph
Mmmph" means, I guess you will have to stay there. (By the way,
it has come to my attention that I am known as the evil twin, this
is untrue -- I am the insane, violent evil twin -- please get this
right for future reference.)
Anyway, an introduction to Rogue 1/2: A battle in China goes
terribly wrong! (Well, what can you expect when it's right over a
place called Jusenkyo?) Now Rogue is avoiding cold water like mad,
Bobby is running after her with kettles of hot water, Mystique is
trying to kill Xavier and Magneto and his Acolytes are attacking!
No Storm! Don't call up a rainstorm!
Now for a continuity note: Mystique and Sabretooth are in X-Factor
in this story and Magneto is leading the Acolytes and living in Avalon
-well stuff it! Who needs accuracy?
Also, a competition: if you can spot all the Ranma 1/2 references
you get a chocolate fish (in spirit -it would be messy to email) and
we will certify that you are as insane as us.
Okay, that's all from me (Jaelle is getting free -- I need more tape)
Love and Daggers, Orla (The insane, violent evil twin).
1/2: Scent of a Mutant
By Orla (the
insane, violent, evil one)
and Jaelle (the one whose account
this is... yeow... watch it with that tape! That hurts! rip)
Disclaimer: We have no money! Don't sue
us! They're not our characters. The premise is copyrighted to Rumiko
Takahashi (or Takahashi Rumiko if you're one of those pedantic people
who absolutely has to point out that in Japanese the family
name comes first) and the characters are copyrighted to Marvel Comics
(or Comics Marvel, whatever). We wouldn't hurt them, we treat them
as though the're our own, no money is being made from this, yadda
"X-Men - Sanjo!"
"Bobby, that's Japanese, not Chinese!"
"But I don't know the Chinese for go!"
"Never mind, WATCH YOUR BACK!"
"Storm, help me!"
"She's a bit tied up sugah, Ah'll help."
Scott shook his head as he surveyed the battle scene from his vantage
point on a clifftop. Below him the X-Men struggled against the Acolytes.
Normally, this would have been relatively easy, the Acolytes for the
most part being pathetic losers :-), however in this case there was
a minor hitch (well, major actually) Magneto had joined the fray.
Even now he had Iceman at his mercy. Rogue flew to assist the beleagured
X-Man. Exodus, seeing the threat to his lord, moved in to head her
off with a vicious power burst. However Exodus had forgotten the history
his lord shared with Rogue. As he approached, Rogue was surrounded
by a magnetic shield. With a gesture Magneto brought the bubble closer
"Why are ya doin' this Magneto?" Rogue asked him pleadingly.
Magneto sighed, the always seemed to be having this conversation,
"I do what I must Rogue," he said tiredly, "For the
good of our kind, to protect us."
"Those people were just scared when that boy manifested his
powers. They didn't mean to hurt him."
"It's no use Rogue, we've been through this before," he
said. "If you will persist in defying me, then one day you will
have to take the consequences. But today at least, I can spare you."
A magnetic blast pulsed through the bubble and Rogue fell from the
sky. Magneto watched her fall, secure in the knowledge that her invulnerability
would protect her.
Below, a small Chinese man was very surprised to see a beautiful
American woman fall from the sky and land with a resounding splash
in a large pool. He picked up a small sign by the pool and looked
at it, "<Oh too bad sir...>"
Rogue 1/2 Theme song:
(to the tune of first season Ranma 1/2 theme)
Yappa pa yappa pa don't know what to
My heart is not a game, it's poker to you.
Yappa pa yappa pa feel like such a shrew,
Who needs cheres? Don't you dare make me wild like you.
Before you femmes got on their knees,
Rogue Rogue it's me you always tease.
Since the day I ran into you,
Rogue Rogue you stole my powers and you
Don't you dare go and make me wild like you.
Somebody tell me why it's so hard
To say those three words; "I love you"?
If I let myself give in to you,
I'll become just a part of you!
Before you come in like a breeze
Won't you stop and ring the bell please?
Before you make my heart a home
Why not let me love you on my own?
I'd be better off without you
But just tonight it's alright
Until tomorrow alright.
Every time your hands touch me,
Rogue Rogue you make me feel dizzy.
Someday we may be more than "friends",
Rogue Rogue you've gone and done it true,
Don't you see you've absorbed me into you!
Rogue 1/2: The Scent of A Mutant
The battle finally over (another draw, noone died and the bad guys
got away but empty-handed), Cyclops gathered the X-Men around him
and realised with a start that one of their members was missing. "Where's
Rogue?" he demanded.
"I haven't seen her since Magneto er... saved her." said
"Saved her? You sure bout de phrasing dere homme?"
"Do not forget Gambit, that Rogue and Magneto have had a long
friendship." reminded Storm.
"Friendship? Is that what we're callin' it these days?"
asked Wolverine with a grin.
Gambit looked blank, "What you talkin' bout?"
There was a silence. "Oh, did Rogue forget to mention that?"
asked Iceman. "Uh, well you see..."
"This is totally irrelevant," Scott interrupted. "Rogue
is missing and we have to find her. Jean, can you 'hear' her?"
Jean Grey put her fingertips to her temples, "I think I've found
her... I think..."
"Her thoughts are very confused, but I do have the location."
She pointed to the valley of pools below them, "Down there."
"Well, let's be goin'!" snapped Gambit.
The Chinese man was mumbling to himself quietly as he waited for
the kettle to boil and was slightly surprised when Beast tapped him
on the shoulder."<How strange! I not recall that spring.>"
he said (in Chinese).
"Nihao," said Beast politely, "<We're looking for
a friend of ours. A young woman with a white streak through her hair.
Have you seen her?>"
"<Oh, sirs, very bad trouble.>"
Gambit panicked, even though he didn't speak Chinese, he knew something
was wrong. "What? Where's she at?"
"I am endeavouring to find out, Gambit," said Hank, "Please
"Patient? We find her uniform floatin' in one of the pools and
you 'spect me to be patient?"
"It's true, Hank," said Jean, coming forward with the soggy
uniform. "We found this over there."
Hank turned back to the man. "<Please tell me what happened?>"
"<Oh very terrible, sirs,>" said the man, as Hank
translated, "<Your friend, she fall in cursed Jusenkyo spring,
Spring of Drowned Skunk. Very tragic story of Skunk who drown in spring
500 year ago. Now whoever fall in spring take a body of skunk!>"
Hank finished translating and there was complete silence. Then Bobby
leaned over to Wolverine. "Well, I guess we know what kind of
herbs they use in that Chinese tea now."
"Bright Lady, look over there!"
The others all turned at Storm's gasp. A very wet, very bedraggled
skunk with brown fur and green eyes was coming towards them.
"No," said Scott. "This is too ridiculous. Even for
Spying them, the skunk came charging up and rubbed itself against
"Eugh," he cried, recalling an unfortunate incident in
his youth. "Get it away from me before it stinks me up!"
He kicked the skunk, which promptly charged him and took a chunk out
of his boots.
Bobby looked impressed, "That's one smart skunk!"
Jean just stood there, her mouth wide open. Scott gave her a worried
look. "What is it?"
"The thoughts of the skunk... it... it... it IS Rogue!"
Hank leaned down and peered at the skunk, which was looking distinctly
peeved. "That is impossible Jean, there is no way..."
"Hank, it's true. The skunk's mind is Rogue's ... this whole
cursed spring thing is true!"
Gambit (who'd been hopping up and down in pain) groaned. "I
don' believe dis!"
"Is she goin' ta be stuck like that forever?" asked Wolverine.
"I hope not," murmured Storm.
Hank turned back to the Chinese man, "<Is there anything
we can do to change her back?>"
"<Oh yes, sirs, please to use hot water.>" The man
indicated his kettle, which had now boiled.
"You're not serious 'bout dis?" asked Gambit. "It's
Jean glared, "You doubt me?" she asked frostily.
"How's your foot gumbo?" asked Wolverine.
"You're not seriously expecting me to believe dat all I gotta
do is pour dis water over dis skunk," asked Gambit,
suiting actions to words, "And den it...."
"HOOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTT!" screamed Rogue, "HOT
HOT HOT HOT HOT!!!"
"Oh my God!"
"Oh my stars and garters."
"Hey, she's not wearing anything!" said Bobby. "Heeeeeey,
she's not wearing anything..." he repeated, with a lecherous
expression on his face.
Storm ripped off her cape and threw it to Rogue, who wrapped it around
"BOBBY! SHADDUP!" she yelled. "Ah nearly drowned
there! I didn't know skunks couldn't swim! Thank God Ah've changed
The others agreed (some of them a little belatedly), and Rogue turned
to Gambit. "By the way, Remy, about that little kick from before..."
After Gambit's nose had stopped bleeding, the team decided to leave
as quickly as possible.
The Next Morning:
Rogue's alarm clock went off at 8 am as usual, tinkling it's familiar
tune, "Yappa pa, yappa pa..."
"Alright, alright, Ah'm up already! Quit it with the cheerful
music!" Rogue snarled. She blinked sleepily, grabbed a towel
and a change of clothes and staggered towards the bathroom, looking
for her usual cold shower to wake her up. She thought about the events
of the day before and shuddered. Thank God it was all over. "Must
remember to punch Erik in the nose next time Ah see him," she
muttered as she turned on the shower.
It was the usual mayhem at breakfast:
"Bobby, you ice over my cereal one more time and I'm gonna..."
"Jean, can you pass the butter?"
"Aagh! By hand! By hand!"
"You didn't say."
"Jean, why is the butter floating in mid-air?"
"Drink your coffee, Scott."
"I see Graydon's gaining in the polls."
"I know a certain someone with blue skin and red hair who's
going to be unhappy about that."
"I know a whole bunch of people not a million miles away who
are already unhappy about that."
"Speaking of which, has anyone seen Rogue this morning?"
"Maybe she sleep in?"
"Wanna go wake her, cajun?"
"Last time I do that, she t'row a pillow at me. Den I t'row
it back. She not speak to me for a week."
"Would somebody please feed the cat?" asked Jean.
There was a pause.
"We don't have a cat." said Psylocke.
"Then what's this furry thing rubbing against my legs?"
Everyone looked at Hank, but he was at the other end of the table.
Everybody looked down.
"Oh, dear," said the Professor. "Everybody stay calm.
If we don't scare it, it won't spray us."
The skunk gave him a disgusted look.
"Hot water! Hot water!" cried Bobby.
Warren walked in with a kettle in his hand. "Can't wait for
your morning coffee, huh?"
Gambit grabbed the hot water just before Bobby did. "What you
be tinkin' of?" he demanded. "No wait, don't tell me."
Psylocke, Warren and the Professor looked confused. Comprehension
dawned as Jean telepathically filled them in. Meanwhile, Bobby and
Gambit continued to wrestle for the kettle.
"I got it," said Bobby.
"Fine, you want it?" asked Gambit, using his powers and
letting go. "It's yours."
"Yipes!" Bobby dropped the kettle.
Hot water sprayed everywhere, and as the steam cleared, the rest
of the X-Men brushed at themselves and glared at the two.
"Thanks a lot, guys," growled Wolverine.
"You can say that again, sugah," drawled a familiar
"Rogue!" cried Gambit, hurrying towards her.
"No! Don't touch me, you fool!" Rogue held up her hands
to ward him off. *ZAP* "Damn, too late. Now I gon' be
tinkin' in cajun all day. However... oh Bobby..." Her voice was
sweet as she picked up a piece of toast and charged it. Bobby yelped
and ran for it. Unfortunately, not fast enough. Jean stepped over
the comatose man and wrapped the tablecloth around Rogue.
"So, it really is a curse."
"Well, it's confirmed." said Xavier from the Danger Room
observation deck. "Cold water triggers the transformation, and
hot water reverses it. However, we have yet to conclude what, if any,
powers she retains in her changed form."
Jean and Psylocke stood amongst buckets of hot and cold water.
Rogue sighed, "Again? All right, hit me."
Psylocke hurled the cold water at Rogue.
"Yeow! That's COLD!" Rogue-skunk shook herself and
glared at Psylocke. The look clearly saying, 'Did you have
to use ice water?'
"Okay, Rogue," said Jean. "We know you can understand
us so please demonstrate what, if any, powers you still have."
Rogue-skunk whuffled and pointed her nose at Betsy, who knelt. Rogue-skunk
rushed up to the ninja and laid her nose against Betsy's bare arm.
Betsy smiled. "Oh, she's so cute like this." She ruffled
Rogue's fur. Rogue promptly bit her.
Betsy's cries brought Warren and Gambit running. As Warren comforted
Betsy (who was using words no proper English lady was supposed to
know), Jean explained to Gambit what they were doing. Gambit grinned.
"Can you fly, chere?"
Rogue-skunk ran up to a little ledge and jumped.
Jean picked the dazed skunk off the floor.
"Well that answers that question."
Gambit was laughing hysterically. Rogue-skunk glared and charged
him. Gambit fell to the ground and saw large stars as Rogue-skunk
jumped up and down on him.
"Okay," said Jean, "She does have her strength."
"How... oof... nice... argh... of... owww... you to notice!"
gasped Gambit. He glared at Rogue-skunk. "You are so uncute like
Rogue was soon changed back (after Gambit and Warren had left).
"This is awful," she sighed, "Ah can't go through
life dodging cold water. It's bad enough not being able to touch anyone!"
"Well," said Xavier," We could go back to Jusenkyo.
Hank and I have done some research and there is mention of a spring
of drowned girl -- that should turn you back to normal."
Rogue glared. "Was it too much effort for you to have done the
research before we went there in the first place?"
Bobby ran in. "Uh Professor... the... er... X-Factor people
"Good," said Xavier, "Is it Forge or Polaris?"
Mystique sighed impatiently. She would never have agreed to have
come if it wasn't for the chance of seeing Rogue. What really annoyed
her was the fact that Sabretooth had been sent with her.
Xavier entered. "Good afternoon. I trust we can finish this
"Don't worry, Chuck; I don't wanna be around here longer than
I have to be," growled Creed.
At that moment there was a loud splash.
"BOBBY! YOU JERK!" screamed Jean.
Mystique raised an eyebrow. "Trouble in paradise?"
Xavier looked distinctly embarassed, "Well..."
"By the way, how's Rogue?"
Xavier looked even more embarassed, "She's... fine."
Mystique and Sabretooth looked at each other. They'd been around
long enough to be able to tell when someone was lying blatantly through
Mystique stood and loomed over Xavier, "Tell me, Charles...
is something wrong with my daughter?"
Bobby burst through the room, "Mad skunk! Mad skunk!" he
ran across the room and leapt out of the bay windows. An extremely
pissed-off skunk barrelled into the room, skidded on the wooden floor
and crashed into the couch.
Mystique frowned, "I can't say I like your taste in pets, Charles.
Or is this your new security system?"
The skunk looked at her and whuffed. A terrible sense of doom washed
over Mystique as she looked into the familiar green eyes.
"Oh no... don't tell me..."
Sabretooth sniffed, "Hey, that smells like..."
"Xavier! You I kill!" Mystique leapt at the Professor,
morphing into a fanged monster with purple hair. Xavier hastily threw
"It wasn't me! It was an accident! Magneto did it!"
"Pitiful!" cried Mystique. "I thought better of you!"
Rogue-skunk, having had enough of this, darted out the door.
Mystique turned, "Oh, my baby! Don't go!"
"Don't worry," assured Sabretooth, "I can sniff her
out." he grinned. "'Course I could do with some incentive."
Mystique said nothing.
Sabretooth inhaled deeply and then gasped and choked. Mystique smiled,
"Ooooo, does the poor widdle puddy-tat smeel something bad?"
Sabretooth collapsed, eyes watering. "Yep... *wheeze* she's
Rogue strolled into the room in a bathrobe, steam rising off her.
She smiled, "My, Ah didn't know ah could do that."
Xavier sighed, "Could someone turn on the airconditioning?"
Just then the alarm went off.
"Wrong button!" Xavier yelled.
"No, right button! We're under attack!" yelled Scott, barreling
into the room. "It's Magneto and the Acolytes!"
[Sounds like a band. Josie and the Pussycats. Jem and the Holograms.
Magneto and the Acolytes... *THWAP* Owww... that hurt Orla.
- Jaelle. Mwahahahahaha - Orla.]
"Oh great," said Sabretooth, "It's a visit from the
loser brigade. Don't worry tho, kiddies. Raven and I will protect
"Good plan," said Mystique. "You go charge them and
I'll watch your back."
"No, no -- ladies first."
"I'm no lady. After you, I insist."
"Will you two stop arguing and come fight already?" Rogue
demanded as she finished buckling her uniform and flew out the bay
windows after everyone else.
Sabretooth and Mystique glared at each other and charged together.
The fight was fast and furious, with the Acolytes putting everything
they had into it. And in the middle of the fight, Rogue once again
found herself confronting the Master of Magnetism.
"Rogue," said Magneto, "Get out of my way.
This mission is too important to let anything stop me. I must
have that information."
"You got bigger problems that that, sugah," she spat. "Erik
Lensherr, prepare to die!"
"You seek to stop me, fair one?" he asked in an injured
tone, "Very well then. I am the Master of Magnetism! The one
they call the Blue Thunder of Avalon!" With that he "threw"
a steel bar at her.
Rogue started an attack run when Storm shouted, "You are not
welcome here, Acolytes! Begone!" The Mistress of Weather gathered
all her power and unleashed it in a huge deluge of wind and rain against
the Acolytes. Unfortunately, Rogue was quite close to the Acolytes.
"Storm, NOOOOO!!" she shrieked, and Magneto stared
as she fled, trying to outrun...
He blinked again as a crack of lightning illuminated the now-dark
grounds. He could see her costume falling, and in it something wriggling.
No one was nearby -- the X-Men were all trying to chase off the remaining
Acolytes -- so he followed Rogue down. He caught her uniform a foot
above the ground and was surprised when a skunk fell out of it. He
stared some more when it tried to charge him. Magneto picked up the
wet animal and looked into it's green eyes.
"Who did you absorb this time?" he wondered aloud.
The skunk glared at him. He could hear the rest of the X-Men approaching,
so he touched the bedraggled creature under one arm and flew away.
"We failed to get the information, my Lord," Exodus started
as soon as they arrived back.
"I am aware of that, Exodus. This is a setback, but not a major
one. We shall merely have to rely on other sources." Magneto
brushed him off.
"Are you alright, Lord? You seem a little preoccupied,"
one of the other Acolytes asked.
"I am quite alright, Unuscione," Magneto said. "Everybody
get cleaned up and have their injuries taken care of. I shall be in
my quarters if I am needed."
Inside his quarters, he pulled Rogue-skunk out from a fold of his
cloak and dropped her on a table.
"What am I going to do with you?" he wondered. The skunk
turned and whipped up her tail.
"Rogue, we are in space. All of our air is recycled. If you
spray here, we will all suffocate," he said, hoping that she
didn't know enough about the workings of his asteroid and the air
conditioning system to call his bluff.
Rogue-skunk sourly turned back to face him and glared.
"Thank you," he said gravely. "Now just behave."
He walked into the adjoining room. Rogue-skunk watched him go, turned
away, and then turned back as her attention was caught by the sound
of rushing water and the faint tendrils of steam that floated out
of the room.
Erik lowered himself into his large, deep bathtub, grateful that
even standing up the water reached only midway up his chest, as the
warm water eased his aches. He was half-frozen from Storm's storm,
and this was just the thing to rela... *SPLASH*
He straightened in surprise and stared at the bubbles coming from
the opposite end of the bath.
"Rogue?" he asked and moved towards them.
*WHOOSH* Rogue's head surged out of the tub as she stood up.
Erik's jaw dropped as she wiped her face and pushed her hair out
of the way. They stood there for a while.
"My Lord, here are the results of those tests you..." Exodus'
voice trailed off as he looked up from the papers he was carrying.
"I... uh... ummm... is there anything you need, Lord?"
"Just another towel, Exodus," Erik said tiredly. "You
can leave it out in my main quarters."
"Yes, sir." Exodus departed hastily.
Erik looked at Rogue, who was still glaring at him. "Would you
like to explain this?" he asked.
"Me? This is all your fault, Erik!" she snarled,
throwing the soap at him. He easily avoided it ... and the shampoo,
conditioner, shaving cream, razor, mirror and soapdish she also threw.
"Rogue, will you please calm down?" he asked.
"I will not! This is your fault Erik, you jerk!" She aimed
a punch at his nose, but he caught her arm and held it.
"What?" Rogue stared at his hand gripping her fist. "You...
you can touch me?!!!"
"Of course I can," replied Erik. "Now will..."
Erik's head rocked back as the force of Rogue's slap left a perfect
imprint of her hand on his face. Rogue got out of the bath, wrapped
a towel around herself and stalked back into the other room.
Erik rubbed his cheek gingerly and grinned suddenly. "She's
so cute when she's angry," he murmured.
"I can't believe dat you used a rainstorm, Stormy!"
"I am tired of hearing you go on about it, Remy! I have already
apologised several times!"
Scott hit the table. Remy and Storm glared at each other one final
time and then looked away. The X-Men were gathered in the Ready Room
discussing the battle with the Acolytes. Well, trying to anyway --
Gambit had not stopped shooting his mouth off since they began.
"Yes I agree that it is distressing that we lost Rogue, BUT
remember that Magneto failed in his objective." Xavier pointed
"But Charles," said Jean, "Don't you think that he'll
use Rogue as a bargaining chip to make us give him what he
"I expect he will."
Bobby sighed, "It's a pity we can't get Magneto to Jusenkyo
and make him fall into a spring ... that would keep him out
of our hair."
Everybody looked at Bobby.
"Wha... what did I do now?"
"My goodness," murmured Betsy, "Bobby actually had
a good idea!"
"Hmmm... if we did get Magneto to meet us at Jusenkyo then we
could also look for the Spring of Drowned Girl," said Beast.
"Then once he brought back Rogue we could turn her back!"
"Wait a minute," said Jean. "What are we thinking?
How could we wish the Jusenkyo curse on anyone? Even Magneto."
"Yes, well you have a point," conceded Scott. "We
can't lower ourselves..."
"Are you kidding, mon ami?"
"I hope he falls into a mean one, bub!"
"Ha! Imagine a cat or a pig with a bucket on its head!"
"Good one, Warren!"
"No charge, Bobby."
"Bright Lady -- let Magneto take the plunge!"
"Oh, sorry, Jean. I got carried away."
Xavier hid a smile. "I can see there is a consensus -- to Jusenkyo!"
"Yeah!" Everybody except Psylocke posed dramatically.
"Ummm... I hate to point this out," she said. "But
how exactly are we going to find the Spring of Drowned Girl?"
"And that's when Ah realised Ah had been cast into hell!"
Rogue finished her story with a dramatic flourish.
Magneto shook his head. "I am truly sorry that it was my action
which caused this, Rogue. Please forgive me."
Rogue sighed and smiled, "Oh Magnus, of course Ah... DON'T!!!"
Magneto ducked the desk that hurtled at his head.
"Who do Ah look like? A Good Samaritan? Ah hate you! You moron!"
Rogue leapt at Magneto, fists ready. Magneto grabbed a cup of cold
water and threw it at her. He then plucked the soggy (and irritated)
skunk from the depths of the robe she had been wearing.
"I told you to behave, whatever form you're in!" he commanded
"Stop that! Now, as I am indirectly responsible..."
"All right, all right, as I am directly responsible I
will help you to find the Spring of Drowned Girl and turn you back
Rogue-skunk squeaked excitedly. Magneto smiled, "Hmmm... this
may work to my advantage... I can use you to trade for that information
Rogue-skunk bared her teeth, Magneto set her down hastily. She jumped
up and down on the table, shaking it and creating ominous cracks.
"Rogue, this isn't helpful!"
"Uh... Lord?" Exodus came in rather tentatively, then he
saw the skunk.
"Aaaaaagh! Vermin on our sacred ground... it must be destroyed!"
Magneto plucked Exodus out from under the remains of the desk he
had just thrown at his devotee. "Whatever made me do that?"
he wondered out loud, dragging the unconcious Exodus out into the
hallway. "I could have just stopped him with my powers. Hey!
Rogue-skunk scampered past him and down the hallway. Magneto dropped
Exodus with a thud and charged after her.
"Rogue! Come back here!"
The Acolytes were extremely astonished when a skunk crashed through
the wall of the audience chamber and skidded to a halt.
"Wow!" said Scanner, eyes wide. "A mutant skunk ...
Is Lord Magneto allowing us pets now?"
"Don't be silly," said Milan. "I'm sure there's a
perfectly reasonable explanation for..." His voice trailed off
as Magneto rushed into the room. The Acolytes bowed, but he ignored
them and grabbed the skunk by the scruff of its neck.
"I suppose it didn't occur to you to use the door at least?"
he demanded of the wiggling animal. "You aren't helping yourself
The Acolytes stared as their Lord tucked the skunk under his arm,
"Now behave," Magneto told it. "Or I'll use hot water
and take you to the Springs stark naked!"
Magneto then realised where he was. "Uhh..." He drew what
was left of his dignity together. "Carry on, carry on."
And he stalked out.
Rusty Collins leant over to Scanner. "Do you think the pressure
of his position has finally taken its toll on Lord Magneto's mind?"
Magneto went back to his chambers and placed Rogue-skunk on his bed,
wrapping her in the covers to prevent escape. He then contacted the
"We've been expecting this," said Cyclops, after Magneto
had made his demands. "Alright, we'll bring the information --
You'll meet us at Jusenkyo, in China, in seven hours."
Magneto frowned. What were the X-Men planing? Still, he'd intended
to go there himself anyway. And once he had the information and then
rescued Rogue maybe she would be so grateful that ... Magneto's hand
went to his nose as he felt a slight dampness. Damn, nosebleed.
"I will come," he told Cyclops in a muffled voice and quickly
cut the transmission.
He wiped his nose and went to the bed. "Rogue, we need to talk."
There was a muffled wuffle from under the bedclothes.
"Well, of course you can't talk as a skunk!"
Magneto picked Rogue-skunk up and went into the bathroom. The hot
water was still in the tub, although it was no longer as warm. He
threw her in.
Rogue surfaced, blinking water out of her eyes, "What d'ya do
that for?" she demanded.
"I need to talk to you," he said. "I've spoken to
the X-Men, and they've agreed to exchange you for the information
I require. We're meeting at Jusenkyo in seven hours, which means if
we leave now we'll have about five hours to search for the Spring
of Drowned Girl."
"Well, why didn't you say so? Gimme my clothes!"
"Umm... unfortunately we left them in a puddle back at the mansion."
"What are we going to do, then? I certainly can't go to Jusenkyo
in a dressing gown!"
"How about in a carry-cage?"
"Not unless you wanna be picking your teeth up offa the floor."
"I thought you'd feel that way," Magneto said. "Unfortunately
we're somewhat short of casual clothes up here, and if I'm transporting
both of us and meeting the X-Men I don't want to waste power I might
need creating you clothes so..." He put an Acolyte uniform down
by the bath.
"Oh, no. Ah ain't wearin' that!"
"There's no other option! The only clothes not in this design
Rogue fumed, "All right, but you gotta lend me one o'your bucket
"Because Ah don't wanna be recognised by any o'mah friends wearin'
this stupid getup."
"Humph. We're leaving in 20 minutes. Be ready."
"He took the bait," reported Scott. "He's meeting
us at Jusenkyo in seven hours."
"So if we leave now, we'll have five hours to find the Spring
of Drowned Girl!" said Storm. "Let us depart at once!"
"You know, we still haven't figured out how to find the
spring," said Betsy.
"Oh... something will turn up."
Two hours later:
"Ah can't believe you brought me here to find the Spring
when you don't speak a word of Chinese!" snarled Rogue,
adjusting her helmet.
"Not true, I know 'Nihao' -- it means 'hi!'"
Rogue swiped at him. "That is not what I meant! How are we going
to find the Spring when we can't even read the signs?"
Just then a small Chinese man stumbled onto them, "Oh hello,
sirs. You need help? I am Official Guide to Jusenkyo."
"You again? Hey, how come this time you can speak English?"
Rogue asked, recognising him.
"Speak many languages, sirs. You need Guide?"
"Yes," said Magneto, "We most certainly do."
"Then follow me. Oh, be careful you not fall in that Spring."
He pointed one out.
"That spring full of pirahna."
"Spring of Drowned Pirahna?"
"No no... is not cursed... is just full of pirahna."
"Oh." Rogue and Magneto looked at each other and floated
a foot off the ground. "Lead on."
The Guide walked into the brush.
[Background Music: Road to Nowhere]
The X-Men land and follow Beast as he reads signs. Betsy takes Warren
and Bobby with her and Jean takes Scott and Gambit as they split up
to look, having had a telepathic crash course in Chinese. Wolverine
and Storm stay with Beast.
Scenes of the X-Men and Magneto and Rogue just missing each other
-- Betsy and co. bend over to read a sign on the ground and are obscured
by a bush as Magneto and Rogue follow the guide past ... Then they
stop and take a side path. Just as they get out of sight, Scott wanders
down to the main road, and so on ... This goes on for four hours.
Gambit, Cyclops and Jean rounded a corner and stopped in shock. There
was Magneto, arguing with a Guide, and next to them was Rogue in an
Acolytes uniform with a spare helmet on.
"I... I don't believe it," said Cyclops.
"I'm sure there's an explanation," said Jean.
"Grrrr... Rogue you dummy! What you be doin' wit dat jerk!?!!"
Gambit charged up to Rogue and tackled her.
"*Whoulfn.* Hey!" she said. "What are ya doin'?"
"Why you joining him?" Gambit demanded.
"Oh sure, dat's why you're wearin' an Acolytes costume!"
"Geez Gambit, listen t'mah side for once, would'ya? He's
only tryin' to help me find the Spring..."
Rogue was cut off as a magnetic bubble surrounded her and lifted
her away from Gambit.
"And what are you doing here so early?" asked Magneto.
"Is this some kind of trick?"
"We just tryin' t'find the Spring of Drowned Girl," spat
"What an amazing coincidence. So am I. So why dont we make that
the appointed rendezvous? See you there in an hour." Magneto,
Rogue, and the Guide floated away.
One Hour Later, at the Spring of Drowned Girl:
"At last," said Magneto. The Guide had finally brought
them to the Spring (after taking them past the Springs of Drowned
Pig, Cat, and Duck). Rogue looked dubiously at the pool. "Are
you sure this is the one?"
"Oh, yes, sirs."
"Okay... cause Ah don't wanna turn into anythin' else."
"That must be it!!!"
Magneto and Rogue turned and saw the X-Men charging towards them.
"Right," said Rogue. "Well Magnus, this is where Ah
Magneto sighed. "I thought you would."
Rogue flew up into the air, but before she could fly away Magneto
drew a bottle of water from his cloak and threw it on her.
"You bast... *whuffle*" The helmet fell to the ground,
Rogue-skunk inside it. Magneto picked her up, and she bit his hand.
He smiled, "That won't work, dear Rogue. I'm wearing reinforced
The X-Men arrived on the other side of the Spring. Cyclops held up
"Here's the information you wanted, Magneto. Hand over Rogue."
"Hand over the disk first."
"Ha!" said Gambit. "You t'ink we fall for dat one?
No -- you give us Rogue first."
"No, the disk."
"How about sending them over at the same time?"
Everyone looked at Psylocke. Cyclops scratched his neck in embarassment.
"Well, yes, we could do that..."
Magneto cleared his throat. "Of course. That was my next suggestion."
He held up Rogue-skunk. She squealed frantically, her noises roughly
translating as, "Ya have gotta be kidding!"
"Ready?" asked Cyclops.
Cyclops threw the disk, Magneto threw Rogue-skunk.
The disk hit Rogue-skunk on the nose. She scrabbled frantically in
the air for a moment and then fell like a stone. *SPLASH*
"The disk!" Magneto saw it floating in the spring. "No!"
"Well," said Psylocke, "I believe everyone lost on
"Rogue, chere!" Gambit knelt at the edge of the pool. The
water bubbled and Rogue flew out.
"It's not everyday you see that," said Bobby, his
"Owwwwww!!!!" A bolt of magnetic energy had hit him on
one side and a charged card on the other. Rogue dived for the abandoned
Acolyte costume and, at a speed almost surpassing Quicksilver's, pulled
Magneto smiled at Rogue. "I'm glad the cure worked."
"Oh, really?" Rogue glared at him, and a green glow surrounded
her body. "Ya throw me around like that and... and... grrr...."
She picked up the Jusenkyo sign.
Magneto backed away. "Rogue, calm down."
"Shut up ... you ... you ... you idiot!"
She swung the sign in a wide arc and hit Magneto with all her considerable
"Oh my stars and garters." Hank shaded his eyes as he looked
into the sky. "With that trajectory, he should land right on
"All right," growled Rogue, "who's next?" The
X-Men scattered. Unfortunately Bobby caught his foot on a root as
he ran and fell. Jean paused in her flight and half-turned undecided,
should she help him or not? She eyed Rogue, who was bearing down on
him, and shook her head. After all, she consoled herself mentally,
He was asking for it.
"Aw, c'mon, Rogue ... Can't you take a joke?" Bobby begged.
Rogue shook him, and his teeth rattled together nicely from his upside
down position as she grasped his ankle.
"Of course Ah can, sugah," she smiled sweetly. "So
now Ah'm goin' t'play a little one on you."
"Jean! Scott! Help me!"
"You're on your own!" Scott yelled from behind a bush.
Rogue flew into the air. "Okay Bobby, pick a Spring."
"B-but I can't read Chinese. I don't know what they are!"
"Ah'm aware of that... now PICK A SPRING!!!"
Bobby shut his eyes and pointed.
"Sayonara, sugah!" Rogue threw him. There was a loud splash.
Scott gasped. "I can't believe she actually did that!"
"I can," Jean said.
"I have to check on Bobby," said Scott.
"Sure, hon. I'll make sure Rogue has calmed down."
Scott ran off. The rest of the X-Men approached Rogue warily.
"So, ummm... how are you doing?" asked Warren.
Rogue stretched, "Oh, Ah feel much better!"
Gambit put an arm around her. "Nice to see you back to normal."
Rogue shook him off. "D'ya mind, Gambit? Ah haven't forgotten
your treatment of me!"
"Hey," Wolverine spoke up. "I didn't know penguins
They all turned, and a penguin was coming towards them... on an ice
Rogue giggled. "Oops! Looks like Bobby found the Spring of Drowned
Jean frowned, "Where's Scott? I can't hear him on our psychic
link... oh no!!!" She went pale and swayed. Wolverine supported
"What's up, Red?"
"That, I suppose," Psylocke pointed. A bear cub was ambling
towards them, a ruby visor over its eyes.
"Scott! Darling!" Jean ran to her husband and picked him
Rogue groaned, "Now we're gonna have to find the Spring of Drowned
Jean looked up, she was smiling, "Oh, I don't know ... Perhaps
it will be okay."
They all gaped at her.
"Well... I get cold feet in winter. A nice furry bear would
be just the thing to warm my toes, and he's so kawaii!" [Cute]
Magneto hit one of the airlocks on Avalon with a thud. An alarmed
Exodus let him in the space doors.
"Are you alright, Lord?"
Magneto staggered into his quarters. "I will be fine, Exodus.
I just want to relax and forget the past 24 hours."
"Perhaps a hot bath would help, my Lord?"
- (biography) - (discussion)
- (stories) - (pictures)
- (links) - (updates)-