Subject: Family Matters, chapter 15, version
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 1997 18:13:40 -0400 (EDT)
Remy was still laughing in the kitchen when Rogue came in, exhausted from a long day in front of the computer monitors. She put her hands on her hips and glared at him.
"Hey, cherie," he said lightly, acutely aware that she didn't look at all happy with him.
"Remy, when ah woke up this morning, in yar damn bed, ya weren't there," she said quietly. "Ah found a note from Logan that ya had gotten sick and was in med lab. Ah went down there and ya were sleepin.' Den ya come runnin' in while ah'm workin' and tell me that you gotta go with Logan to get his damn bike. And ah haven't heard from ya since then. Ah found out from Scott that Logan had hurt himself and ah didn't hear a damn word outta ya. What's goin' on, sugah?" Remy gulped. He looked over at Bobby who was once again shaking with laughter and at Jean who didn't look at all sympathetic.
"Could, I, uh, go ta'k t' Rogue for a minute?" he asked. Jean nodded. He took Rogue by the arm and guided her out of the kitchen and into the back yard. She continued to glare at him, furiously.
"I'm sorry, cher," he said. "I been a little stressed out an' got ordered to kitchen duty. I wasn' t'inkin' bout you."
"That's obvious as all hell," Rogue said angrily. Remy took a deep breath.
"Cher," he said quietly. "I was done totally freaked bout what happened to Logan. An' den I got caught up in. . ." He wasn't sure what to say and decided to opt for the truth. "I got caught up in playin' and laughin' wit Bobby an' forgot t' come ta'k to you. I'm really sorry."
"Ah think ya gotta a little more explainin' ta do for me, sugah," Rogue said heatedly. Remy sighed and started to fill her in on all the events of the past day. As he explained her ire cooled a little.
"Logan did what???" she gasped. She listened a little longer and started to laugh as Remy explained the reaction that he and Bobby had to the events. She finally nodded her understanding of his stressed out attack of comradeship with Bobby. "Okay, sugah, ah can understand that ya were freaked about what happened to Logan. Is he okay?"
"He sure sounded okay a few minutes ago on the com unit when we called med lab t' tell em dat dinner's ready," Remy grinned and told her about the Lumberjack song as rendered by Hank and Wolverine. She laughed harder.
"So when are we gonna have some more time together, sugah?" she asked.
"After dinner. . ." Remy's breath caught and he rethought. "Maybe, after dinner, cher. I don' know what gonna happen t' me after dinner." He was suddenly deeply unhappy as he contemplated just what might happen to him after dinner.
"Oh, hell, Remy," Rogue said, "do ya think that ya gonna get yar bottom blistered again tonight?"
"Dat's what I been promised, cher," Remy said unhappily. She sighed and put her arms around him, hugging him tightly.
"Remy," Jean called from the kitchen. "We could use some help getting this food on the table." Remy disengaged from Rogue's arms.
"Whatever happens, cher," he said carefully. "I wan' t' see you later."
"Ya got it, sugah," she responded. "And ah'll help ya guys get the food on the table."
Bobby looked up as Remy and Rogue re-entered the kitchen. He noted that Remy looked miserable again and sighed. He wondered what his Cajun friend had on his mind. "Hey, Rem," he said cheerfully. "You and Rogue get it all worked out? Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more, say no more."
Remy started to laugh again. "Please, say no more," he requested as he got the garlic bread out of the oven and put it in a serving basket.
Bobby got the salad bowl off the table. He and Remy had spent over an hour tearing lettuce and slicing and chopping tomatoes, mushrooms, carrots, olives, celery, radishes and other vegetation into the salad.
"What can ah do to help?" Rogue asked.
"Salad dressings, croutons, Parmesan cheese," Jean ordered.
The other members of the team were gathered around the table Remy and Bobby had set earlier. Remy heaped salad into his bowl and took a large serving of spaghetti and several pieces of garlic bread. He looked out at his family.
"You okay, now, Logan?" he asked with concern and worry.
"Besides feelin' like an idiot, I'm fine, Remy," Logan said as he filled his own plate.
"And what's gonna happen after dinner?" Remy asked warily, unable to eat a bite on his plate until he heard the answer.
Logan looked at him carefully. The boy was obviously on edge and about to lose his appetite. "Remy, can't we wait till after we eat to discuss what's gonna happen after dinner?" he asked gently. Remy shook his head. He needed to know. Logan took a deep breath.
"Never mind," Remy said wretchedly. "I know what's gonna happen." He looked down at his plate and felt nauseated. "An' I not very hungry now. Can I be excused, please?" Tears began to well in his eyes and he wanted to get away from the table before he started to cry.
Hank put his hand to his head and clutched at his fur pulling on a handful. "Remy," he said with great patience. "You've eaten only half a bowl of soup in the last two days. . ."
"I can' eat, Hank." Remy pulled his chair back hastily and was out of the room in a flash. The others left at the table heard a broken sob as he hit the stairs and another muffled sob as he continued on up to his room.
"Y'know," Sam said, looking bemused. "This is just lak it used to be at home when we had about two or three of us all teenagers at the same time. Someone was always runnin' away from the dinner table in tears." Logan snorted and heard similar suppressed explosions of amusement from Storm, Jean, and Hank.
"What on earth is going to happen after dinner?" Warren asked with exasperated concern.
"I'm going to be inviting all of you to the study about a half hour after dinner is done to witness Remy getting his bottom thoroughly spanked for injecting himself with an unidentified white powder," Logan said.
Betsy sighed deeply. "Do we have to watch?" she asked.
"Think it makes it a much more painful and effective punishment," Logan shrugged.
"It would be appreciated, Betsy," Charles said. She nodded with another sigh.
"Well, it's no wonder he's crying," Warren said sympathetically. "I think I'd be almost out of my mind if I was in his shoes."
"Dammit, Logan," Bobby protested. "Hasn't he been punished enough?"
"I obviously don't think so," Logan said gently. He pushed his plate away. "And now I've lost my appetite." He started to rise.
"Logan!" Hank protested. "Your healing factor used enormous amounts of energy today. Not to mention. . .well, anyway, you need to eat, too."
Logan looked at him with a raised eyebrow. "Listen up, and listen up good, Hank. If I ain't hungry, I ain't hungry. I can't eat a bite while I can hear Remy crying all alone up in his room and I ain't leaving him there by himself. And before you jump in again, I think it's me he needs and it's me he's gonna get. Maybe if I go on up there, I can get him calmed down enough to come back down. There ain't no reason for all of us to have our appetites ruined." Logan looked carefully at Hank who nodded his capitulation. He looked around at everyone else and collected several nods of agreement. He went out the door.
Remy was lying face down on his bed, holding his pillow and sobbing hard when he heard the door open to his room. He looked up, profoundly grateful to see Logan, who came over to the bed, sat down, and gathered him into his arms. "It's okay, Remy," he said.
"It's not. . .okay," Remy protested. "I don' wan' t' be spanked again. I know dat. . .I deserve it. . .but I don' have t' like it."
"No, kiddo, you don't have to like it." Logan sighed and brushed Remy's hair out of his face. He held him tightly. "So go ahead and cry. It's okay." He was profoundly worried about how overloaded the kid seemed to be and wondered if it really might be too much to give him the kind of spanking he deserved that particular night.
"I'm tired. . .of blubbering. . .like a baby," Remy objected.
"Don't look to me like you got much choice, kiddo. So why don't you just try to tell me what's goin' on in your head?"
"Just t'inkin' bout how it's gonna feel t' have ev. . .everyone watch me get my. . .bottom bared. . .and spanked. . .and having ev. . .everyone hear me crying and den. . .havin' ev. . .ev. . .everyone. . .see me havin' t' stand in de corner. . .wit. . .my pants. . .d. . . down. . . I t'ink. . . dat I'll just wan' t' die." Remy sobbed deeply. "An' I know you l. . .l. . .lo. .lo. . ."
"Yeah, Rem, I love you."
"But when you're. . .spankin' me. . .and scolding. . .me. . .I don' feel like I de. . .deserve t' ever. . .have. . .anyone love me. I feel like I'm. . . just bad all de way t'rough."
"Do you, kiddo?" Logan asked with concern. "There's no part of you that knows that this is indeed happening to you because you're loved?"
Remy cried even harder and admitted reluctantly, "N. . .n. . .no. . .dere's some part of me. . .dat knows. . .dat dis is only happenin' t' me cause you do. . love me."
Logan held him very closely and stroked him gently. "Go ahead and cry this out, child. I ain't goin' anywhere until you feel a little better." Remy nodded and continued to sob, until he simply ran out of tears. He really didn't feel a whole lot better. He still knew he was going to be spanked and he was still unhappy, but at least he felt loved and comforted. His sobs tapered off to the simple shudders of after-sobs, the gasping breaths that come after deep crying. He lay quietly in Logan's arms for several minutes. Logan reached over to his bedside table and grabbed a handful of tissues and gave them to him. Remy gratefully wiped his face and blew his nose and then put his face back down on Logan's shoulder.
"Logan?" he asked.
"Were you in trouble for what we did this afternoon?"
Logan chuckled ruefully. "Oh, yeah, kiddo. Oh, yeah. Lots of trouble. Both for hurtin' myself and for drivin' you and Bobby at breakneck speeds to that damn service island."
"Me and Bobby didn' say a word about dat," Remy noted.
"Yeah, but I did," Logan said. "I learned a hell of a long time ago that when I screw up bad, it's best to confess. At least to the people I care about. To hell with the official authorities."
"Did you get yelled at?"
"Yeah, you might say that," Logan admitted. "Got yelled at pretty damn loudly by Hank and by Storm and by your Dad. Also got the hardest whack on my butt that I think I've ever experienced in my life." Remy sat up and stared at him in shocked surprise. Logan chuckled. "You look like you're about to drop your teeth, kid."
"Wh. . .who would. . . dare?" Remy choked out.
"Hank. And I let him do it, kiddo. I knew I'd earned it so I took it, though it rattled the teeth in my head." Remy continued to stare at him and Logan gave him a carefully edited version of the events that had transpired in med lab, leaving out most of his own anguished shame and despair as being inappropriate to share with this kid who depended so much on his strength. Remy put his head back down on Logan's shoulder and hugged him tightly.
"I'm sorry," he said softly. "I forget sometimes dat de reason you understand me so well is cause you had your own hell to live t'rough."
"Glad you understand that, kiddo, and no apology needed or expected," Logan hugged him back. "Now, could we please go back down to the dinner table. You left a lot of people who love you down there, worried as hell and not very able to eat." Remy shuddered.
"Don' know if I can," he said.
"I think you owe it to them, Remy. And aren't you hungry?"
Remy thought about it. Actually he was starving.
"I look like I been cryin'" he objected.
"They know you were cryin' and they know why and they understand,'" Logan said gently. "They're your family, Remy. Let them accept you and love you, okay?"
Remy thought about it. "Okay," he said hesitantly. Logan helped him to his feet and they went back down the stairs.
The family was still at the dinner table, still picking at their food when Remy and Logan came back in. There was a collective sigh of relief.
"Welcome back, guys," Jean said warmly. "Remy, Logan, your plates must be cold by now. I'll go put them in the microwave. You can work on your salads."
"No," Warren said quickly. "Jean, you sit. You made dinner. I'll go heat up their food. Thanks for coming back, Remy."
Remy went back to his seat, not looking at anyone, but grateful for the understanding affection he heard in the voices of Jean and Warren. As he passed by Bobby, he felt a hand come out and grab his lower arm.
"Hey, guy," Bobby said, "It really was just a little tree." Remy started to laugh. Bobby squeezed his arm gently before letting it go.
"If I hear one more remark about that little tree," Hank said ominously. "I'll swat the hell out of the person who makes it."
"Hey, Hank," Logan said. "It really was just a *little tree.*" He hadn't quite reached his chair at the table. Hank leaned out of his chair and raised his hand high in the air. Logan closed his eyes, listened for the sound of Hank's hand coming down, and whirled around. With a "Snikt," his claws emerged and flew up to meet Hank's hand coming down toward him. Hank barely managed to stop before impaling his hand. Logan looked at him and laughed. He sat in his chair and started on his salad.
"Excellent salad," he said appreciatively. "Who made it?"
"I did," Bobby called out. "Remy helped but he was just following my directions."
"Oh, really, mon ami," Remy said skeptically. "An' who nixed de idea of puttin' in de anchovies? And who decided to put in de mushrooms? And de chickpeas? An' who boiled de eggs?" Remy put croutons and blue cheese dressing on his salad and started to eat.
"Guys, guys," Jean interrupted shaking with laughter. "You both did a good job on the salad." . "Hey, Rem," Bobby said. "It ain't gonna run away if you pause between bites."
"T'anks, Bobby," Remy said. "I never would've guessed dat if you hadn't told me." He was ravenous.
Everyone at the table started to eat with a little more interest and enthusiasm, grateful that Remy seemed to be okay for the moment.
Warren reappeared with the heated up plates of spaghetti and garlic bread. He put his hand on Remy's shoulder as he put one plate down. "It's okay, Remy," he said quietly. Remy was surprised that Warren even cared. He choked up slightly, but managed a nod of acknowledgment.
Warren went around the table and put Wolverine's plate down in front of him. "Thanks for getting the kid back here," he said.
"Wasn't that hard," Logan said as he continued his salad.
Remy felt his eyes fill with tears again at the obvious loving support of his family. He didn't trust himself to speak a word. Rogue put a hand on his shoulder gently. He put a hand up and held her's tightly. And he ate. He felt as if he were starving. Which was probably the case since he had few ounces of fat on his body and hadn't eaten much in the past several days. He tried to blink back the tears in his eyes, but one spilled out. It rolled down his face and he was deeply embarrassed.
"Remy," Betsy said lightly. "You might be a total mess, but you're our total mess and we wouldn't swap you for anyone. Although, I must admit, I'd be tempted to swap you for Johnny Storm. Always thought he was cute as hell."
Warren looked outraged. "You think that smart-ass Torch is cute?" he sputtered.
Jean started to laugh out loud. "I've had some secret fantasies about the merc with a mouth."
"Deadpool????" Logan choked on his spaghetti. "Jean, are you slam out of your mind?"
"Always thought that if a movie were ever made with Deadpool in it, that the only person on earth who could come close to playing him with his never-stopping mouth, would have to be Robin Williams," Jean continued to laugh.
"Who do you think could play Logan?" Rogue asked with fascination.
Jean considered, still giggling, "Well, I think Mel Gibson has the right height and he can sure do berserker attitude, not to mention those beautiful blue eyes. But he's too pretty. But I think that Bruce Willis has all the attitude. He'd be perfect."
Logan groaned and continued to eat. "Bruce Willis?" he protested. "He ain't got no hair."
"Make up, Logan, think, make up." Jean laughed.
"What about Remy?" Rogue was shaking with laughter.
"Daniel Day Lewis, except he's too old. So maybe Johnny Depp." Jean continued to laugh.
"Daniel Day Lewis?" Remy objected. "As in what? He changes his whole personality in every movie."
"How about My Beautiful Laundrette, Remy?" Bobby choked out unable to eat from laughing. Remy glared at him.
"Though you got to admit those love scenes between Day-Lewis and that Pakistani guy were hot," Betsy said with a little shiver. Warren looked at her askance.
Jean intervened. "I was thinking more like Last of the Mohicans, Remy," she said.
"Johnny Depp is too short," Rogue protested. "How about Kevin Bacon. He's got the right body. Or Matt Dillon."
"They're both too old to be Remy," Jean said.
"Bobby?" Rogue asked still laughing.
"How bout Nicholas Cage," Betsy sputtered.
"Too old to be Bobby, but he sure had the right attitude," Jean admitted. "I think Kevin Bacon actually could work for Bobby. He's a little too old but he could play young and he's a doll."
"And I'd cast Tom Cruise for our fearless leader," Rogue chortled. "And then, Jean, you could be played by Nicole Kidman."
"Tom Cruise is too short to be Scott," Jean objected.
"But ya gotta admit, he can sure get across that same single minded grim dedication to purpose," Rogue giggled "How about Alec Baldwin, looking and acting just like he did in Hunt for Red October?"
"What about Hank? Betsy laughed.
"Sean Connery, with lots of make up," Jean continued to laugh helplessly.
"Sean Connery is way too old to be Hank," Betsy said severely.
"I said lots of make up," Jean explained. "He's the only actor I can think of who's sufficiently erudite. Unless you want to put Patrick Stewart in the role. 'Make it so.'" The men looked at one another, shaking their heads as the women continued to cast the movie.
"Sam? I think Leonardo DiCaprio," Rogue giggled out.
"What about Bishop?" Storm asked. "I think Danny Glover would work, but he's too old."
"Wesley Snipes," Jean offered. "He can really act. He'd have to bulk up, but what the hell."
"Warren?" Betsy asked.
"Mel Gibson for Warren," Jean said certainly.
Betsy disagreed, "He's too old and too short. Gorgeous, enough, but too old and too short."
"How about Matt Dillon with his hair dyed blonde?" Rogue offered. There were a few nods. "And how about the professor?" Rogue giggled.
There was a pause and then Storm offered, "Christopher Walken. He could play anyone."
"No, no," Jean laughed. "That's where we'd cast Patrick Stewart. He'd be perfect."
Gambit looked dangerously at Bobby. "Y' t'ink we might try to cast dese women?"
"I think so, Rem," Bobby answered. "Who'd you cast as Rogue?"
"I t'ink I'd go for Julia Roberts," Remy said thoughtfully.
"Storm?" Bobby asked.
"Oh, no contest, Iman, indeed," Remy said decisively.
"Who is Iman?" Storm demanded.
"You see de sixth "Star Trek" movie?" Remy asked. "De "Undiscovered Country." She was de woman in de Klingon prison who was de shapechanger."
"And Betsy?" Bobby asked.
"Oh, I t'ink Betsy could be played by Michelle Pfieffer wit her hair dyed. She got de body to kill for. Don' you t'ink? But, I dunno," Remy said. "I t'ink dat maybe we should save Michelle Pfieffer for Emma Frost. I t'ink dat maybe we should cast Demi Moore as Bets. She got de body, even it seems she ain't got de brains."
Logan was laughing so hard that he could hardly eat. "We left anyone out?" he asked.
"Don' t'ink so," Remy said. "T'ink we got ourselves a cast. Prolly cost bout 40 million, just for de cast, but hey, what de hell? It be a box office smash."
"We could cast the other X-teams," Bobby suggested. "Who in hell could play Cable?"
"Arnold Schwarzenegger," Remy dissolved into helpless laughter. "He'd be perfect." The whole table roared with laughter.
"Enough," Charles said, laughing. Bobby and Remy subsided still laughing, as were most of the family around the table.
"There's not much for dessert," Jean said lightly. "Just ice cream in the freezer." Bishop and Betsy got up and started to clear the table.
Logan looked carefully at Remy. "Kiddo," he said, "We could put this off till tomorrow. You've had a long, hard day."
Remy shuddered and thought about it. "No," he said shakily. " I wanna get it over with, please."
"Okay," Logan said. "Could we meet in the study in about thirty?"
"No problem, Logan," Warren said lightly. "I'm gonna be eating chocolate ice cream til then." He shot a sympathetic look toward Remy who was looking down at his plate and missed it totally. Tears welled again in Remy's eyes. He was acutely aware that he was soon to be punished again and very unhappy.
"I need to talk to Cable," Logan said abruptly. "And explain to him that his kids in X-Force ain't gonna be welcome to watch this punishment."
"I'll do that," Charles said quietly. "Logan, take Remy to the study and try to help him understand that he is loved even though he's being punished." Remy gulped and felt more tears welling in his eyes.
"Remy," his father said gently. "Let Logan take you down to the study."
"Yes, sir," Remy said unhappily.
Charles sighed. "Remy, none of us want this. You brought it on yourself."
"Yes, sir, I know dat," Remy said as tears spilled out and ran down his face. The professor sighed again and went out the door.
Remy looked at Logan. "You don' need t' take me t' de study. I know where it is," he said shakily. He headed for the door, stopping to kiss Rogue's gloved hand along the way. She looked up at him and squeezed his hand tightly.
"Rem," Logan said gently. "I know you know where it is. Your Dad just wanted you to have some company. So, let's go, kiddo, okay?" He stood and accompanied Remy out the door. He looked carefully at Remy in the hall. "Kiddo, we got thirty minutes before your next spanking. Go back up to your room and change outta those jeans. They'd fall to the floor when I put you in the corner and you'd be miserably upset. Put on some sweat pants with an elastic waist band so your pants will stay up around your legs even when I take em down." Remy nodded gratefully, as tears continued to leak down his face. He fled up the stairs.
Logan sighed and went into the study. Hank was already there, waiting for him. "Where's Remy?" Hank asked.
"Sent him back to his room to change his clothes," Logan said wearily. "Told him to change outta those jeans."
"Logan, are you worn out?" Hank asked. He was worried.
"Yep," Logan admitted. "I'm worn to a frazzle. I love this child deeply. But I got my own shit to deal with and I'm tired as hell. And I'm worried, Hank. I think that Remy might be too over the edge to deal with another spanking. I think it might be best to wait till he's had some time to recover his equilibrium. I offered to put this off till tomorrow, but he told me that he wanted to get it over with. But I'm worried he's gonna blow sky high."
"And if he does?" Hank asked.
"I don't know," Logan said. "Maybe, he'll lose it completely, charge me up and blow me to smithereens without even knowing what he's doing. I never been turned into a bomb before. Don't know if my healing factor could handle that one." He chuckled. Hank was not amused.
"If he loses it that badly, Logan, and you allow him to get his hands on you, I'll find a way to make you wish you were dead if he doesn't accidentally kill you. I don't care how bad you're feeling, old friend. If you let Remy hurt you, he would be suicidal and I would be furious." Logan nodded, aware that Hank was right.
Storm entered. "Where's Remy?" she asked.
"Went up to his room to change clothes," Logan responded. "And if he ain't back in a few, I'm gonna call him."
"Have you decided how you're going to spank him, Logan?" Ro asked. Logan sighed.
"Yeah, I think so," he said reluctantly. "I think with my hand first. And then after the time in the corner, I think that I'll make him bend him over the arm of the couch, take his pants down to his knees and use the belt, welting him up and down his legs as well as his bottom. Speaking of which, I ain't got one. Hell, I'm gonna go change myself. I hate wearing scrubs."
"Logan, do you think he can take that?" Hank asked in very worried tones. "I thought you were concerned he would blow."
"I am concerned he'll blow, but I'm even more concerned that he learn that shooting up drugs is totally unacceptable. I want him to feel very, very punished. Hank, I don't know what the hell I'm doing, but I do know that Remy's behavior in shootin' up drugs was way far out of line. He needs serious punishment." Logan shrugged. "I'm outta here. Gonna change. I'll be back quickly. And I might just get the kid on the way back."
"Logan," Beast said quietly. "Think about what you're planning to do real carefully. I really wonder if Remy can tolerate not being held."
"But it would certainly make him feel very, very punished." Ro sighed.
"And that's the whole point, Hank." Logan simply looked unhappy.
Logan checked on the com unit on his way back down and Remy had indeed not returned. He stopped by Remy's room and found him sitting on his window seat, smoking, and blowing the smoke out the window. Tears were leaking out of his eyes and down his face. Logan went over to him and took him gently by the shoulder.
"Time to go back down, kiddo. We only got about another ten minutes." Remy put his cigarette out, turned, and put his arms around Logan's waist, leaning his face against his stomach and chest. Logan's arms closed around him. "It's okay, Remy," he said gently. "You just gonna get spanked, not executed." Remy sobbed as if his heart was breaking. He knew he deserved the punishment awaiting him, but he hated it deeply.
"I know," Remy said shakily. Logan raised him to his feet and took him back down to the study, sitting down on the couch and pulling him back into a hug. Remy put his face against Logan's chest and continued to cry very hard. He was scared and unhappy.
Scott and Jean were already there. As the minutes went by, the professor came in with Cable. Bobby was right behind them.
"Schwarzenegger?" Cable asked with a raised eyebrow. Bobby chuckled and Remy managed to join in a little weakly.
"Seemed like good casting t' me," Remy said, his voice still trembling, as he wept against Logan's shoulder.
"Me, too," Bobby laughed.
"I don't think I quite have his accent," Cable objected mildly.
"No, Nathan," Logan chuckled, "but you do have his build and his style of total menace, tempered with humanity."
Rogue and Sam came in followed by Warren, Betsy, and Bishop. Most of them looked with sympathy at Remy who didn't look up at them. His blood was freezing in his veins. Tears were still spilling from his eyes, soaking the front of Logan's cotton shirt.
"I think it's time, Remy," Logan said. Remy shuddered, but didn't resist as Logan guided him into position, face down and bottom up. His blood continued to run cold as he felt Logan's hands at the waist band of his sweats. He shuddered as his pants came down and then shook with a sob as his underwear came down. "Tell everyone in this room why you're over my knees with your bottom bare. Tell them what you did to deserve this," Logan ordered. Remy was miserable with his pants and underwear banded across his thighs and his bottom obviously bared for a spanking. His face burned with shame and humiliation.
Remy gulped, trying to control his need to sob urgently. "I shot up a white powder dat someone I didn' know offered me. I t'ought it was cocaine, but it wasn.' It was mostly amphetamines."
"And what do you deserve for doin' that, kiddo?" Logan asked grimly.
Remy gasped out one sob again. He didn't want to say it, but he realized he had to. "A. . .sp. . .spanking."
"And even if had been cocaine, what would you deserve?"
"A. . .spanking," Remy admitted with another sob.
"Actually," Logan said firmly. "A spanking is merciful, boy. You screwed up bad." Remy held his breath and tried to stop crying.
Logan's hard hand came down on his bottom with a resounding smack. Remy shuddered but didn't cry out. With all his friends and teammates observing, he really wanted to control his desperate need to yelp and cry and sob. He felt miserable as he imagined all their eyes on his bare and vulnerable bottom watching as it turned red.
Logan continued to blaze firm spanks against Remy's behind. Once again, he spanked methodically with each spank landing several times in one place before he moved down to the next spot. His hand print showed up in white each time and then turned to red. Remy squirmed and gasped out over and over with pain. Logan covered every inch of his bottom with burning spanks and then started over. Remy's gasps turned to yelps and by the time Logan started the second circuit across his reddening behind, he was starting to sob deeply and hopelessly. He was unable to stop himself from frantically reaching back with his hand to try to shield himself. Logan caught it, held the hand hard against Remy's waist and continued spanking.
On the third circuit of burning spanks, Remy started pleading, "Pl . . .pl . . .please. . .st. . .stop." Logan shook his head.
"Remy, you're gonna get this clear and unmistakably," Logan said severely. "X-men don't shoot up drugs. You don't shoot up drugs. If you ever, ever, ever put white powders in your body again, you are going to spend at least half a day with your bottom bare and spanked over and over and over with your only breaks being in the corner with your pants still down waiting for your next blistering. Is that absolutely and crystal clear to you, child?"
"Yes. . .s. . .sir," Remy sobbed out. His face burned with shame and he was crying so hard that he was shaking. "I'm. . .s. . .sorry." The resounding spanks continued to smack into his bare butt and he was in an agony of pain and remorse. He started to struggle and kick and tried to move away from the forceful spanks. He was desperate to escape the pain. Logan paused and trapped Remy's legs under his own strong right leg and continued to blaze spanks against Remy's bottom, balanced over his left thigh and totally vulnerable to his right hand. Logan raised his left thigh slightly and Remy's bottom was even more rounded and exposed to the stinging spanks that kept burning across it. He pushed his face down into the pillows of the couch and cried earnestly.
"Do you think I like doin' this to you, kiddo?" Logan asked unhappily.
"N. . .no. . .but. . .pl. . .please. . .stop," Remy begged. Logan sighed and continued to smack his hard hand down. He wanted this spanking to be truly memorable. And it was. Remy had thought that his Dad's spanking had hurt. That has been almost mild compared to the spanking Logan was administering. He sobbed desperately and was soon crying so hard that he couldn't even continue to find the words to beg Logan to stop. He couldn't stop himself from continuing to struggle, but he was totally trapped.
Logan paused. "Now, you go over to the corner, child, with your pants still down and you'll stand there for twenty minutes. Then you're going to feel a belt against your bare behind." He stood Remy up. Remy had chosen to wear his biggest T-shirt and it fell down over his butt. "Hold that shirt up above your waist, kiddo," Logan ordered. Remy did as he was told. Logan spanked him every step of the way over to the corner and then bent him over and delivered about twenty more spanks. Remy sobbed with despairing dismay.
"Hold that shirt, up, Remy," Logan ordered. "I want every person in this room to see your red butt."
Remy held the shirt up with one hand and clapped his other hand to his blazing bottom. He felt it cautiously and tried to rub away part of the pain. He felt totally humiliated, but he couldn't help himself. He thought that the eyes of every person in the room were on his reddened behind and had never felt so ashamed and embarrassed in his young life. He leaned his head against the wall and cried as if his heart were broken. He didn't even want to think about how a belt might feel when he got his next spanking.
Logan felt almost as miserable as the boy standing in the corner. He shook with tension and distress. Ro came up to him and put her arms around him. "It's okay, love," she said gently. "You're just doing what has to be done."
"Doesn't mean I have to like it," Logan said shakily. Tears rose in his eyes as he remembered the abuse he had suffered as a child. He didn't want Remy to feel abused. He just wanted him to feel lovingly punished.
"Logan," Charles said. "It's okay." He was deeply concerned. "Remy knows that this is only happening because he's loved. It's not the same."
"You inside my head, Charlie?" Logan protested.
"No, Logan," Charles said quietly. "I know you, better than you think I do. I understand some of your demons. And I know you see yourself in my son and I know you love him."
"Yegods, Charlie," Logan said. "I love him deeply. And I'm worried as hell about him. I don't know if he can take any more."
"He deserves this punishment and he needs it, old friend," Charles said. "Let's just do it and get it over with."
Remy stood in the corner with his pants down, holding his shirt up. His head was down and his body slightly curled over his other arm clutched across his stomach which was aching from his deep and gasping sobs. His knees felt weak and wobbly and he was trembling slightly as he leaned against the wall in the corner. He didn't want another spanking, especially not with a belt. He looked and sounded as wretchedly miserable as he felt.
Betsy went into Warren's arms and he held her tightly. He was upset, too. Scott shook his head and turned to Jean who had a crying Rogue in her arms. Jean reached out a hand to Scott and he took it. Bishop was looking out the window, glowering. And Sam simply looked on with an upset and fascinated bemusement. Sam had always been in awe of Remy's insouciant cleverness, blithe spirit, and formidable combat skills. He couldn't quite assimilate this sobbing, punished boy with his previous conception of his powerful team mate. Bobby just glared at the floor. Hank was more concerned about Logan than he was about Remy and kept his eye's on Wolverine's face. He was worried that Logan was even more overloaded than Remy. Cable sat quietly in a arm chair and looked on thoughtfully.
The twenty minutes crept by slowly. Remy's sobs quieted slightly. Logan went back to him and took him by the arm.
"Okay, kiddo," Logan said firmly. "Back over to the couch. And this time you ain't goin' over my knees. You're gonna go over the arm of the couch with your bare bottom up and get spanked with my belt. And when we're done with that I'm going to put you back over my knees and spank you again with my hand." Remy sobbed with excruciating despair as Logan led him back over to the couch. Logan bent him over the high armrest. He felt Logan pull his pants and underwear down to his knees. He was disconsolate and terrified that this would be unendurable. He grabbed the bottom of the couch and tried to brace himself.
Remy heard Logan pull his belt from out of the loops of his jeans. He winced with dread and then the leather of the belt descended on his bottom. He gasped with pain. Logan lashed him again and again.
"Point is, Remy," Logan said resolutely, "you risked your damn life, child. You didn't know what in the hell that damn powder was. It could have been coke. It could have been speed which it mostly was. But it could have been PCP or strychnine. It could have been anything. And you just let someone shoot it into your body without a thought. You could've killed yourself." The belt smacked against Remy's bare bottom and down his legs, leaving behind red ribbons of pain.
Remy sobbed and yelped again and again. "I'm. . .s. . .s. . .sor. . .sorry," he choked out, sobbing so hard that he shook. He desperately tried to keep his legs together and not kick and squirm. It was bad enough to have his pants pulled all the way down to his knees and to feel the belt lashing against his legs as well as his butt. He thought he would die if he exposed himself more humiliatingly.
Bobby clenched his arms over his stomach and felt nauseated. He continued to glare at the floor. Sam had to look away. He turned around and walked over to the window looking out at the trees. Even Cable had a hard time continuing to watch. Most of the others were not even trying to view the spanking, but there was no escaping the sounds of the punishing smacks of the belt and Remy's sobbing.
"It's not good enough to be sorry, Rem," Logan said firmly. "You're being punished for being so damn cavalier with your own life. It's not okay for you to take that kind of chance." The belt whipped out again and again, slashing across Remy's bare and stinging bottom and down his legs to his knees, over and over. Remy wept desperately.
"And you're being spanked for even thinking it was okay to use coke. What in the hell were you telling yourself, boy?"
"I. . .don' know." Remy cried hopelessly, feeling terribly ashamed. "I wasn'. . . t'inkin.'"
"I guess you weren't," Logan said grimly. "And do you think that you might remember this spanking you're gettin' right now the next time someone offers you a white powder to shoot up?"
"Yes. . .yes. . .sir. . ." Remy felt horribly and desolately alone, unloved, abandoned, and hurt. "Pl. . .pl. . .please. . .stop. . .pl. . .please."
"I'm sorry, Remy," Logan sighed deeply. "This one is gonna be long and hard." He continued to smack the belt up and down. For at least the moment he stopped the lecture and Remy first felt a second of relief that he wasn't being scolded any more, but then started to feel even more devastatingly alone without even the connection of Logan's voice. He felt himself sinking further into the black pit inside him than he had ever gone before.
"LOGAN!" Charles called out a warning, too late. Remy sent out a psychic blast without even realizing what he was doing. He was reliving being beaten unmercifully by a group of older kids and sending the memories to everyone in the room. When he had woken up on the streets of New Orleans with no memory of his past, he had survived, stealing clothes and food. When he had been invited to join a gang by older kids, he had been relieved and grateful.
They had beaten him senseless and stolen his clothes and shoes. Remy broadcast almost incoherent images and feelings of fists coming down on him and kicks landing on his head -- which led to memories of other beatings. Chains lashing at him. Boots slamming him in the back. He had learned early that when a beating was inevitable to curl up and protect his guts and head as best he could. He finally ended with excruciating images of Sinister smashing his ribs and collar bone. Of Sinister holding him up by the scruff of his neck and pounding his face over and over until both eyes were swollen shut and blood was pouring from nose and his split lips. He was completely dissociated from his current reality, and trapped again with Sinister. All he wanted was to escape. He charged up the couch on which he knelt, without regard for the fact that it would blow him to pieces.
Jean gasped and enclosed the couch in a telekinetic shield. It exploded harmlessly and Remy fell to the floor jerking his pants back up as he rolled to his feet. He looked around with crazed and hunted eyes, still out of his mind and ready to explode anyone or anything near to him. Logan reached out for him and was batted almost across the room by Hank's furiously strong fist.
"Dammit, Logan," Hank yelled, "I told you! Bishop, grab the boy and let him charge you!"
Bishop did as he was told immediately. He grabbed Remy by the arms and used his energy absorbing powers to soak up Remy's blast. Logan had rolled to his feet and watched as Bishop tore himself away and rushed out of the room. They could all hear Bishop harmlessly release the energy blast outside. Rogue jerked herself out the restraining arms of Cable who had grabbed her as soon as Remy lost it. She approached Remy cautiously.
"Remy," she said gently. He recoiled from her and backed off, picking a book up off a table and starting to charge it. He threw it toward her and Jean caught it in another telekinetic bubble in which it exploded harmlessly. Cable grabbed Rogue again and pulled her back.
"He doesn't know what he's doing, Rogue," Nathan said. "And if he hurts you, he'll be miserable when we get him back."
"He ain't gonna hurt me, Nathan," Rogue said. "Ah wouldn't let him."
"Rogue, I know you're stronger than he is and not likely to be hurt if he hits you with his bombs, but what if he charged you? Give him a minute to calm down," Cable said gently. Rogue subsided.
"Charlie," Logan said, "can you reach him inside his head?" Charles shook his head.
"He's got his shields up," the professor explained. "We've all been trying to get through. I'm linked with Betsy, Cable and Jean. None of us can get through."
Bobby, Sam, Scott, and Warren watched helplessly, not having a clue how to help. Bobby stepped forward a little. "Hey, Remy, it's okay really," he said gently.
"Bobby, don't get too close," Charles ordered. Bobby ignored him and continued to approach. Remy picked up a lamp, charged it and threw it. Again Jean enclosed it in a telekinetic shield, just as Bobby threw an ice barrier around it. The ice and the lamp exploded within Jean's shield.
"Guys," Jean with exasperation. "This is draining my powers and no progress is being made." Scott grabbed Bobby by his collar and dragged him back, giving him a frustrated shake.
Remy retreated to the window, cowering like prey before predators. He didn't know where he was or what he was doing. He simply had an overwhelming sense of danger. As Logan approached him, he charged the window, preparing to blast it out so he could escape. Logan continued to approach and the window blew. Shards of glass flew outwards, a few shooting back into the room, striking Remy and Logan.
"Remy," he said gently. "C'mon, kiddo, it's me. You're not in danger, Rem. C'mon, kidlet, it's really okay." He kept his distance, aware that Hank was keeping him in reach of his long arms and wouldn't hesitate to knock him across the room again if he risked his safety. Remy looked at him, warily prepared to go out the window, ignoring the blood dripping down his face.
"Remy," Logan said quietly. "Look around the room. Just look. Everyone is keeping their distance. You're not in danger. Sinister ain't here. This is your family. Just look." Remy kept his eyes mostly focused on Logan, but he shot quick, careful glances around the room. Everyone was indeed keeping their distance.
"Breathe, kidlet," Logan asked gently. "Just breathe." Remy took a couple of deep breaths and suddenly the name "kidlet" sank into his awareness. Only one person had ever, ever called him that. He looked deeply into Logan's frantically worried blue eyes. A couple of convulsive shudders shook his whole body. He looked down at his feet and then looked up at Logan with fear and confusion.
Suddenly, he dissolved into deep and overwhelming sobs. "O'mi'god," he sobbed out. "What did I just do?" He was crying so hard that he could barely catch his breath.
"You just let all of us know how it feels to be an abused kid," Logan said gently. "And if you felt abused by me, kiddo, I'm beyond sorry. It makes me want to be dead." Remy looked up at him, crying hard.
"No," he gulped out. "I just need you t' hold me. I. . . .don' care. . . if I have. . .t' be. . . sp. . .spanked. . . any more. . . I just. . . need you to hold me. . . pl. . .please." Logan took Remy by the hand, guided him over to the remaining couch, gathered him into his arms and held him securely. Remy put his face into Logan's shoulder and continued to cry.
Logan, Jean's voice was in his head filled with relief and warm amusement. *Hank asked me to tell you that if you say one more word to Remy about wishing you were dead, he'll later make that swat he gave you earlier seem like a gentle pat. I don't really know what he's talking about, although I think I'd like to. But I have to agree. I don't think Remy can handle you wishing you were dead.*
*Good point. Thanks, Jeannie. And tell Hank, oh hell, tell Hank I was pretty sure that he was planning to whack the hell out of me again anyway. And I'm seriously considering letting him.* Logan shook his head, feeling intensely annoyed with himself.
You sure that's what you want me to tell him? Jean's voice was full of laughter.
"You bet, darlin.' I don't usually get confused about what I mean to say. And I'll tell you later what he's talkin' about.*
Logan held Remy tightly as the boy continued to cry as if he were being broken in half. "What. . . did I do?" he asked again. Logan explained and Remy cried even harder. "I didn' mean to hurt myself again, Logan. I really didn' know what I was doin.'"
"I know that, kiddo," Logan said gently. "You ain't gonna be punished for any of it. This one was my fault and all my fault. I'm sorry, kiddo. What sent you over? Talk to me."
"I couldn' bear it," Remy sobbed out. "I just couldn' bear being all alone like dat. It was too scary. An' you don' know. None of you know. After Sinister beat me up an' while I was healin,' he kept comin' t' me an' demandin' dat I do what he wan'ed. An' he kept me naked an' he. . .he flogged me wit somet'ing leat'er like a whip. Mostly across my back until I was bleeding. Did dat over an' over." Several members of the family gasped with horror. Logan felt sick and dismayed. The belt had been a big mistake.
"Logan," Charles said firmly and kindly. "You didn't know. Stop it."
"Stop what, Charlie?" Logan asked roughly. "Stop feeling guilty and miserable that I hurt this kid? I don't think so."
"NOOO," Remy wailed in despair. "L. . .Lo. . .Logan, I'm sorry. It's my fault. Not yours. . . pl. . .please. . .don't."
Jean's voice was back in his mind. *Sweetie, Hank just asked me to tell you stop beating up on yourself with Remy listening to it. Said Remy can't handle it and that he'll be more than happy to beat you up later. He told me to tell you to prepare yourself for the hardest smacks on your gluteous maximus that you've ever felt.* Her mental voice contained a combination of worry and amusement.
Logan sighed with deep dismay. He was beyond exhausted and confused and felt as if he could do nothing right. He held Remy even more tightly.
"Kidlet," he said gently. "I'm fine. And you're gonna be fine." Remy clung to him, crying hard. "Remy, we all screwed up tonight. And we're all gonna make it right, somehow." He profoundly wished he had some clue as to how to make it all right.
"Are you gonna. . .sp. . .sp. . .spank me, more?" Remy gasped out. Logan took a deep breath. He didn't know how to respond.
Charles intervened. "Yes, Remy. You're going to get the rest of the spanking you were promised," he said quietly. "But not while you have shards of glass embedded in you. Logan, he needs it. A spanking is the simplest antidote to the agony of all those beatings. A spanking is not a beating. And he still deserves it and he knows it."
Remy sobbed with relief and fear. Hank approached, took Remy from Logan's arms and simply picked him up to carry him to med lab and remove the glass. He glared at Logan who met his eyes with reluctant acceptance and responded with a resigned shrug. Logan knew exactly why Hank was angry with him and knew he had earned it.
As soon as the door shut behind Hank and Remy, Bobby picked up an a glass serving dish from a table and threw it violently across the room, smashing it against the wall. Other members of the family ducked as the glass flew. Sam stared at him with horrified amazement.
"How in hell could it possibly help Remy to be punished any more?" He demanded with fury. Charles looked at him calmly.
"I'll happily explain it to you, Bobby," he said coolly. "If you think you manage to get control of your temper. We don't need this right now." Bobby glared at him, picked up a clock from the table and threw that, too. Clockworks flew everywhere. Charles sighed. He moved his hover chair over to the couch on which Logan sat and pulled himself out.
"Bobby, it's been a very long time since you were spanked. Do you want to have that experience right here and now?"
"I don't fucking care. I'm sick and damned tired of watching Remy getting tortured. I don't fucking blame him for blowing things up and busting out windows. I just about feel like doing it myself." Bobby abruptly turned and froze all the glass in the other window. He plummeted its temperature down low enough to shatter it thoroughly. Once again, shards of glass flew all over the room. By merest luck, no one was hurt, but even Bobby was shocked and taken aback by the violence of what he had done. His stomach sank as he suddenly realized the kind of trouble he'd just landed himself in.
"Come here, right now, Bobby," Charles ordered sharply. Bobby gulped. "If you don't do exactly what I tell you to do right this minute, I'll get the others to help me." Scott and Cable both straightened up with grim and disapproving looks on their faces. Bobby gulped again and did as he was told. He approached the couch as slowly as he dared, talking every inch of the way.
"I really didn't mean to do that," he said quietly. "And I'm really, really sorry."
Charles looked at him sternly. "You chose to do it, Bobby. And I'm quite sure you're sorry. I imagine you're going to be even sorrier. Unbutton and unzip those jeans," he ordered. Bobby hesitated and then again simply did what he was told, still talking fast.
"Don't you think that like maybe I'm too old for this?" he suggested frantically. "I'm older than Remy. Hell, I'm almost as old as Scott."
"And you just had a tantrum that would do credit to a two year old," Charles said firmly. "Anyone in this room think that I'm threatening Bobby with anything less than he deserves?" Charles looked around. There were some unhappy faces, but no one had been particularly pleased to have been bombarded with exploding glass, especially so soon after Remy had blown sky high. Bobby gulped again.
"Would it do it any good for me to go down on my knees and beg?" he asked desperately and with deep chagrin, knowing the request was idiotic.
The professor took Bobby by the arm, pulled him face down over his knees, took his jeans right down, and then pulled down his briefs. Bobby gulped again with dismay. He had almost forgotten how scary and humiliating it felt to have his bottom bared, over the professor's knees. It had been years, but he remembered clearly just how hard Charles' hand could feel. Then he was experiencing how hard that hand felt as the professor started to spank him soundly. Within moments, he was yelping loudly as his bottom blazed.
Charles smacked his hand down one side of Bobby's butt, then up the other and then down the middle. He landed another series of hard spanks to the underside of his behind, right where his buttocks met his thighs and landed more spanks on the top of his thighs. Then he started back up the same side he had first gone down. Tears streamed down Bobby's face and as Charles started the whole series of spanks over, he began sobbing.
"I'm sorry," he gasped out. "Pl. . .pl. . .please. . .stop."
"I told you that you were going to end up feeling a lot sorrier, Bobby. We don't need this kind of acting out from you. Remy is a mess right now," Charles said firmly, "and Logan and I and all of us are only motivated by what is best for him. We don't need you throwing tantrums."
"I'm. . .s. . .sorry," Bobby gulped again as the burning pain built in his bottom. He was crying intensely.
"As well you should be," Charles said severely. "You could have hurt everyone in this room. You could have hurt yourself. And you made a horrendous mess which you will clean up." Bobby sobbed disconsolately. He felt miserably ashamed as well as severely disciplined. He knew his behavior had been way out of line.
Charles continued to spank Bobby's bottom until it was intensely red and sore and Bobby was shaking with sobs. Then he relented. "I'm glad you care about Remy, child, but we don't need you flying into fits of rage to defend him. It's possible that we just might know more than you about what he needs." He took Bobby's pants back up and pulled him into his arms. Bobby sobbed hard and clung to his substitute father.
"I'm so. . .sorry," he said again.
"It's okay, Bobby," Charles said gently. "Now, let me try to explain to you. Remy has been abused over and over. He doesn't know the difference between loving discipline and abuse. He doesn't know how to discipline himself. That's all we're trying to teach him. Do you feel abused right now?"
"No, sir," Bobby gulped out. "Just punished."
"Good," Charles said gently. He held Bobby until he stopped crying and went on holding him until Bobby pulled away.
"I'm sorry," Bobby said yet again, looking miserable. Charles took Bobby's face in his hands and looked at him kindly.
"It's all right, Bobby," he said. "I'm glad you're learning to love Remy. He's very lovable. But you don't need to protect him from those of us who love him ourselves." Bobby nodded and stayed beside Charles on the couch, not wanting to look at another soul in the room.
Wolverine was still sitting silently beside Charles on the couch. He was almost in a state of despair. Bobby's spanking had seemed to happen elsewhere from the dimension in which he was yelling at himself. Pieces of glass burst out of skin, expelled by his healing factor and he busied himself getting them up off the floor and into a waste basket.
Hank came back in with Remy, who still had tears streaming down his face. "I got the glass out," Hank said. "Logan, he's yours to deal with."
Logan sighed and took Remy back into his arms. He held him tightly and hesitated. "Kiddo," he said, "you ready to finish this spanking and get it over with?" From where Remy's head rested on Logan's shoulder, he could see Bobby at the other end of the couch and was perplexed.
"Bobby," he said quietly. "What's wrong?" Bobby's eyes were red and swollen and that he looked miserable. Bobby tried to take a deep breath which caught as if he was about to start crying again. He wasn't really sure that he wasn't going to start crying again.
"I sorta lost my temper, Remy," he said shakily. "And blew my cool. And sorta threw things and broke things and sorta smashed that other window and sorta turned it into shrapnel. So your Dad sorta put me over his knees, took my pants down, and blistered my butt. And I don't think he sorta blistered it. I think he just about barbecued it. Hurts like hell."
Remy stared, amazed. He felt profound sympathy but also a strange sense of relief suddenly not being the only misbehaving child in the group who was subject to spankings. "Geez, Bobby," he said. "I'm sorry, mon ami."
"I earned it," Bobby admitted as tears welled again in his eyes and he felt another shuddering catch of his breath. Charles pulled him back into a hug which Bobby accepted gratefully. Charles moved closer to the end of the couch, leaving room for Logan and Remy.
"Remy," Logan said patiently. "I asked you a question. Do you want to go ahead and get this spanking over with and be done with it?" Remy trembled with fear, but nodded his head.
"Oui," Remy gulped out. Logan pushed him face down over his knees and took his pants down again. Remy started to sob as soon as his bottom was bared. And he sobbed even harder as Logan's hard hand started to smack down on his bare behind which reddened again quickly.
"What do you have to say to me, child?" Logan demanded.
"I . ..I'll. . .n. . .never. .. .never.. ..shoot up drugs. . .again," Remy sobbed.
"Then I think we're done, kidlet," Logan said with relief. He paused.
"NO, Logan," Charles said firmly. Logan glared at him. "Logan, that wasn't even the beginning of a real spanking. Do you want him to get the message that all he has to do is lose touch with reality, explode half the room, and his spanking gets minimized to few half-hearted smacks?"
Logan nodded with resignation. "No, sir," he said quietly. "Remy, I'm sorry, but your Dad is right." Remy nodded, crying even harder, and Logan's hand continued to smack down on his bare red bottom until it was hurting almost unbearably. Again he was unable to stop his hand from coming back to try to protect himself and again Logan simply grabbed it and held it at the small of his back. As Logan continued to spank him, the pain got so bad that he had to try to struggle away and again Logan trapped his legs beneath one of his. Remy's bottom got redder and redder and burned and burned until he was once again wailing with pain and biting down on the hand near his mouth to try to distract himself from how much it hurt.
"Pl. . .pl. . . please. . .stop," he begged over and over past the hand in his mouth.
Bobby simply started crying again as he listened to the solid whacks of the spanks against Remy's bottom and his desperate sobs and pleading. Charles held Bobby tightly. Hank was looking with deep worry at Logan's face. It looked stressed, strained, and distraught. He thought Wolverine was even more over the edge than either Remy or Bobby without the relief of being able to cry.
Jean went over and put a hand on Sam's shoulder. He was staring out one of the broken windows and looking deeply upset. Betsy was now holding Warren who was even more upset than she was.
Scott was sitting on the floor carefully picking up shards of glass and putting them in a waste basket, trying to stay busy and not listen. Cable came over, knelt beside him and started to help his distraught father, feeling as usual distinctly odd that the bizarre circumstances of his time traveling life had placed him in this situation in which he coexisted with his father while being significantly older and tougher than Scott was.
"Do you think you could try a little harder not to cut yourself?" he asked gently, taking Scotty's hand in his and looking at several bleeding cuts. "This could probably be a little better handled with a broom, a vacuum, and gloves." Scott looked up at his huge son and managed a faint grin.
"You're probably right," he admitted.
Bishop was still just glowering out the window as he'd done since he came back in. Rogue went over to Jean who put an arm around her while still keeping a hand on Sam's shoulder.
Logan continued to spank Remy thoroughly and Remy reached a point at which he was sobbing almost hysterically. "I. . .I'll. . ..never. . .ev. . .even . . .look at. . .drugs again," Remy sobbed out. "I. . .pr. . .promise."
Logan looked over at Charles who nodded. He stopped. "Okay, kidlet," he said gently. "This time, it is enough. And I'm gonna leave you in place for a few, until your bottom stops hurting quite so bad and you calm down a little." Remy nodded gratefully. Logan let go of the hand which had been held at the small of Remy's back and Remy reached back with it to feel his seemingly blistered bottom. It felt surprisingly normal although sore and burning as hell. He rubbed it frantically and continued to sob. As his sobs tapered off a little, Logan took his pants back up and held him.
Bobby stopped crying but was still shuddering with after-sobs. Charles continued to hold him tightly.
Remy cried desolately. "Am I still gonna be spanked again t'morrow for wreckin' my bike?" he asked shakily.
"Remy, you're not gonna to be spanked for wrecking your bike. You're gonna be spanked for riding it drunk, high, and recklessly and almost killing yourself. And sorry, kiddo, but, yep, I think so," Logan said quietly. Remy sobbed harder. Logan sighed. "It'll be okay, kidlet. I'm gonna take you up to your room."
"Wait a minute, Logan," Charles ordered. "I think Remy might need to hear something from other members of his family. He's been through a hell of a lot in here tonight."
"Good, idea, Charlie," Logan said quietly. He held Remy and waited. Sam shook himself loose from Jean's supportive hand and went to kneel on the floor beside the couch where Logan held Remy.
"Gambit, ah don' know what those memories were that ya sent ta us, but if ya done lived through that kind of hell in your past, ah can understand why ya done messed up bad recently. Ah still think the world of ya, friend," he said quietly. Remy nodded.
Warren let go of Betsy and approached. "Remy, my childhood was paradise compared to yours. And your memories make me ashamed as all hell that I haven't used my damn money to do more for homeless kids. That's gonna change, my friend," he sighed. "And I tell, you, Gambit, you might have screwed up bad and you might deserve every damn bit of this punishment you're getting. But I don't care how hard you cry or how blistered your butt is, there isn't hardly anyone I'd rather have at my back when it gets down and rough and dirty. You're one of the best and all the rest are right here in this room. And you make me laugh more than anyone but Bobby and Hank. Except, of course, Scotty, who as we all know is the wittiest X-man, by far."
"Hey," Scott protested. "Sarcasm not appreciated."
Remy managed to laugh past his tears and several members of the team chuckled at the outraged indignation in Scott's voice as well as at Warren's dry delivery. Warren put his hand briefly Remy's shoulder.
Bishop continued to glare out the window, but spoke. "We're all X-men. We're a family and we take care of our own. Remy, I'm still trying to deal with you being a twenty-two year old mixed up boy here, when in the future I come from, you were the man I most feared and respected, but it's fine with me for this family to help you come to terms with yourself."
Remy nodded again and Jean approached. She put her hand to his cheek and brushed his long, tousled auburn hair out of his face, which was an impulse few people who loved him could resist. "Do I need to tell you again that I love you, kid?" she asked. He shook his head.
"I don' t'ink I can hear much more of dis," Remy sobbed. "It's too much for me t' take in right now. An' I know dat Hank loves me an' Ro an' Rogue an' my Dad. An' Bobby, you don' need t' say not'ing. You neither, Scotty. Really."
"That leaves me," Betsy said gently. She came over to Remy and looked down at him with her hands on her hips. "Remy, for most of the time I've known you, I've thought you were an obnoxious, smart-mouthed pain in the ass who could fight like a warrior and spent most of the rest of the time making jokes and being difficult. I always thought that basically your heart was in the right place, but I never completely trusted you. Now that I know some part of the hell you've lived through, I understand a little better. I still think you can be a real pain in the ass, especially when you screw up the way you did the other night and I think you deserve every one of these spankings, but I hate watching you get them and I hate your pain. But, as Bishop said, we're a family and you're a part of this family and I love you, damn it. We're all going to see you through every part of this hell until you recover completely. And if you ever blast my mind again with your horrible memories like you did tonight, well, to be honest, I know you didn't mean to and I would give half my life that you didn't have them to blast at us. So, it's okay, Remy. I know you have to deal with all this pain, but don't let any part of the pain be any doubts that we love you and want you."
Remy sobbed even harder and reached his hand up to take Betsy's. She took it and kissed it gently and then went back to Warren and put her arms around him.
"Well said, lover," he said to her softly.
"Ditto," she replied to him.
Cable cleared his throat. "I'm not really part of this family," he said quietly.
"You're my son," Scott protested.
"But I'm not one of the X-men," Cable said. "Doesn't matter. I still want to say something. May I? Remy?"
"Sure," Remy trembled with fear. He was sure that if anyone was going to utter words of condemnation it would be Nathan.
"Remy," Nathan said. "I think you're a mess, right now. But it might just interest you to know that I don't think it's your fault. And I think that you and your family are doing exactly what needs to be done to help you. And I've learned more from this situation than I could explain. So thank you. And, sport, you got a lot of courage to be facing what you're facing and taking what you're taking. You could have cut and run any damn time at all. Instead you're staying here and taking your punishment. I respect it and I respect you."
Remy sobbed with relief. "Thank you, Nathan," he choked out. "Now, please, everyone, I'm on overload. Can I just go up t' my room?"
Charles nodded at Logan who helped Remy to his feet. As Remy passed by Bobby, who was still in Charles' arms, Bobby looked up at him with a glint in his eyes. "Hey, Rem," he said. "It really was just a little tree." Remy started to laugh at the same time he cried. Hank groaned.
"Remy," Charles said quietly. Remy turned to his father. "I want you in the danger room in the morning. And after some controlled combat, I want you to start working every day with me, Jean, or Betsy on controlling and using those psychic powers you have. And danger room workouts for all of you. I know Sinister's files are important, but so are our workouts. Scott, would you and Storm work out a schedule, please? Ro, I think it might be one good plan to have you and Remy go up against Logan and Bobby." Storm nodded her agreement. Remy acknowledged the order with a nod and left with Logan.
Logan looked carefully at Remy in the hall. "You need a cigarette, kiddo?" he asked gruffly. Remy nodded. "Well, I need a cigar. You okay with going outside instead of up to your room?"
"Mon Dieu, oui, mon ami," Remy said gratefully. Logan nodded.
"You got your smokes with you?" Remy shook his head. "In your room?" Remy nodded. "Go get em while I get a drink. You want anything?"
"A coke," Remy said quietly. Logan nodded again.
I'll meet you out in the porch in five," he said. Remy ran up the stairs.
Logan hesitated and then went to the liquor cabinet and grabbed a bottle of Glenfiddich before heading to the kitchen to get Remy a coke. He ducked out the back door as Ororo and Rogue came in to get cleaning supplies to tackle the mess in the study and headed around to the front porch with the coke, the bottle and a shot glass.
Remy was leaning against the posts of the porch, dragging deeply on a cigarette. Logan sat down on the steps, poured himself a shot, threw it back, lit a cigar, and sighed deeply as he poured another shot. He handed Remy the coke.
"How you doin,' kiddo?" he asked. Remy put out his cigarette and sat down, carefully, beside Logan. He winced with agony as his bottom hit the step and stood up again with a sigh. He was way too sore to sit on the hard wooden steps.
"I had better days, Logan," he said, lighting another. Logan shook his head, tossed back his shot of Scotch, put down the shot glass and got up. He entered the house and reappeared in a moment with a large soft cushion which he tossed at Remy. Remy took it gratefully, put it down on the steps and sat again. It still hurt but it was bearable. Logan poured himself another shot.
"I've had better years than this one day has been," Logan said as he sipped at the shot glass. He was tempted to toss it back. He hesitated a moment and then did, pouring himself yet another. "Remy, if you ever plan to get drunk, don't do it with single malt Scotch. It's too damn expensive and it all tastes the same after the first few shots."
"You plannin' t' get drunk, mon ami?" Remy asked quietly.
Logan looked at him carefully and sipped at the shot glass in his hand. "Nope," he said. "I don't think so. Not at least until later. And not very if I'm going up against you and Ro in the danger room. That wouldn't be fun with a hangover."
"What happened t'night stress you out so much dat you wan' t' get drunk, Logan?" Remy asked tightly.
"All that happened today stressed me out so much that I want to get drunk," Logan answered honestly. "Not you, kid. Not what happened with you. Mostly my own nightmare memories." The second part of his answer was not completely honest. What had happened with Remy in the study had Logan so upset with himself that he was almost over the edge, but he didn't want to burden Remy with it.
"I wanna get drunk," Remy said quietly. Logan shrugged and offered him the bottle. Remy shook his head. "I been told by Hank and my Dad dat if I drink any more at all dis week dat I gonna be in big trouble. I don' wanna be in any more trouble." Tears welled in his eyes and he swallowed hard.
Logan felt a surge of frustrated impatience, again with himself. "Oh, hell, Remy, I'm sorry." He put the bottle down and finished what was left in his glass. He stamped out the cigar and held his arms out to Remy who dropped his cigarette, stepped on it, and accepted the hug. He started to cry again. Logan held him tightly.
"I'm sorry," Remy gulped out. "I'm sorry dat I'm such a damn mess."
"Well, kiddo, you damn well might be a damn mess, but you're my damn mess and I love you," Logan said unsteadily. He felt tears welling in his own eyes and blinked them back. "What is it, kidlet? Why're you cryin' again? It's okay. Just tell me."
"I don' know if I can go t'rough it again t'morrow night." Remy tried hard not to cry. "I don' know if I can bear havin' you spank me again."
Logan sighed deeply. He didn't know if he could bear it either. He didn't know what to say. He held Remy closely and stroked his back. He could definitely feel the effect of the four shots of whiskey he had consumed.
"Hell, kidlet," he said, "I don't even want to. If I could invent a time machine and go back and erase my threats to you, right this minute, I'd do it. But, Remy, please, how would you feel if you weren't punished for driving your bike drunk on those dirt trails and almost killin' yourself? You don't have to answer. We both know the answer. It's gonna be okay, child. You're gonna be spanked and you're gonna feel punished and it's gonna be over. And you're gonna know that we love you. Goddamnit, Remy, I love you more than I know how to say. I ain't good with this mushy stuff." Remy laughed. He pulled himself out of Logan's arms and lit another cigarette. Tears continued to well in his eyes.
"You t'ink it might be okay if I just cry all damn day t'morrow?" he asked shakily.
"I'm not real sure that would work real well in the danger room, boy," Logan chuckled. "Other than that, kiddo, go right ahead. And I think right now, I need to just take you on up to your room."
Remy nodded, put out his cigarette, and allowed Logan to accompany him up to his room. He went straight to his window seat, put down the cushion he had carried up and again sat down carefully.
"I ain't leavin' you alone, Remy," Logan said.
"I t'ink Rogue be along any minute," Remy said. Logan nodded and sat down opposite this overgrown child.
"Remy," he said carefully. "I wanted to punish you memorably tonight so you would never even think again about shootin' up drugs. But I will never, never again punish you so that you feel so helpless and alone. And I'm sorry." Remy looked at Logan with dismay. His eyes welled with tears again.
"I know dat you love me, Wolvie," he said. "It was my fault dat I blew to hyperspace." Logan took his face into his strong hands and held it.
"No, kidlet," he said gently. He paused and considered carefully what he needed to say, cursing himself for drinking. "It was no one's fault. It was an accident and a mistake. You didn't do anything wrong. Not tonight." Much as Logan deeply felt that it was indeed all his fault he knew that Remy couldn't handle that perspective. Remy nodded and met Logan's eyes with his own eyes still welling with tears.
"T'ank you," he said as he started to cry yet again. Logan sighed and took the young man into his arms again.
"And it's really okay if you cry all night and all day tomorrow," Logan said gently. "Even in the damn danger room."
The door opened and Rogue peeked in. Logan motioned her over. "Remy, Rogue's here. Do you want me to stay?"
"No, mon ami," Remy gulped. "I wan' t' be with her." Rogue came over and put her arms around her lover who continued to cry.
"I'll take good care of him, Logan," she said simply. Logan nodded and left.
When Remy and Logan had left the study, Charles had sighed deeply and looked down at Bobby.
"Now what about you, young man?" he asked. "This is your family, too. Do you have anything to say to them?" Bobby sat up and stared down at the floor.
"I'm sorry. Really," he mumbled.
"Bobby," Jean said gently. "Try looking at us. It's okay. You lost your temper, over-reacted and got punished. As far as I'm concerned, it's over and done."
Bobby looked up at her and was relieved to see the usual warm affection on her face. He looked around at the others. Ro looked back with calm acceptance, Sam with sympathy. Warren shrugged with a grin. Hank reached out and tousled Bobby's hair. "I wasn't even here, Bobby, but you're still just about my bestest friend. That doesn't change."
Scott shook his head, but managed to grin at him. "Is hanging out with Remy going to precipitate these kind of fits on a regular basis?" he asked.
"Don't think so," Bobby said with a faint grin.
"Was that a joke?" Warren asked incredulously. "Did Scott Summers just make an admittedly very feeble attempt at a joke?"
Scott looked at Warren for a moment as Warren started to laugh and then abruptly picked up a cushion from his chair and threw it right at Warren's head. While Warren was ducking, Scott grabbed and threw another, and as Warren ducked that one, Scott finally managed to score a hit smack in his face. Warren grabbed all three cushions and dove behind an arm chair. "Payback time, Scotty," he announced. Scott went over the side of his chair and started collecting some ammunition of his own. Bobby began grabbing cushions and tossing them to Warren. Sam seized some and tossed them to Scott. The others just got out of the way. Hank swung himself up to the ceiling fan to watch with interest. Storm looked over at Rogue and rolled her eyes.
"Boys will be boys," she said quietly. "Why don't you and I go get some cleaning supplies to tackle this mess?" Rogue nodded.
Cable shook his head and went over to the couch, sitting down beside the professor who smiled at him. "I think they need it," Charles said simply.
"And if they manage to break the rest of the lamps?" Nathan asked with a grin. "Or impale themselves on some of this busted glass?"
"They seem to have the good sense to stay out of the worst areas," Charles commented. "You do have a point, but I think they need a few minutes to blow off steam."
"Haven't seen Warren and Scott have a pillow fight in years," Hank observed from his vantage point above.
"Do you remember the one when they managed to bust every pillow in the bedrooms upstairs?" Jean asked. "I kept finding little shreds of foam for weeks after that one, in the oddest places, like in my hairbrush, in my pockets, in the sugar bowl in the kitchen."
"I found some in my cereal that time," Bobby called out as he scored a direct hit on Sam's head and ducked behind the desk as Scott threw one at him. Warren got Scott in the face as he rose to fire at Bobby. Scott's glasses flew off and there was an immediate cease fire as per old and familiar rules. Scott groped around for his glasses.
"Scotty, no, there's glass on the floor," Bobby protested. "You'll cut yourself." He picked up the glasses and handed him to his team leader. "And hey, man, you're already bleeding all over your hands. And getting it all over these pillows."
"Whoops," Scott said ruefully. He had forgotten the cuts on his hands.
"First aid time," Hank said firmly. "C'mon, Scotty. Everyone scored. Fight's over." Scott got his glasses back on and grinned at Warren who rose from behind his chair. Scott, in complete violation of the usual rules, immediately slammed him with another cushion right in the face. Warren stared at him in utter amazement.
"That was for the other remark you made about my wit," Scott said with satisfaction. Warren laughed as he started putting cushions back.
Storm and Rogue came in with the cleaning supplies and handed gloves and a broom to Bobby. Hank took Scotty out to deal with his cuts. Jean and Betsy helped clean while Bishop went after the vacuum cleaner.
"Show over?" Nathan asked. Charles nodded.
"I think so, Nathan," he said. "I think we have some discussion to be held with Logan when he gets back from taking care of Remy, but that's private."
Cable nodded. "I don't think I've ever seen Wolverine so upset," he commented compassionately. Charles sighed.
"No," he said thoughtfully. "Remy's nightmare of a childhood is bringing up all kinds of stress for all of us to deal with. But I think that's one of the tasks of a well functioning family."
"And something that I don't do enough of with my collection of damaged kids," Nathan said carefully. Charles started to shake his head and Nathan held up his hand. "No, sir, don't tell me that you didn't mean for me to hear it that way. I know you didn't. But as I told Remy, I'm learning a lot from all this and I appreciate it. I think I let Tabitha get away with way too much attitude without exploring what lies behind it. And I very well think that the next time she has an attitude attack, she might find out what it feels like to get herself spanked."
"I've often thought she might benefit," Charles smiled at him.
"I'm gonna wander down to med lab and say goodnight to Scott," Nathan said. Charles looked at him with sympathy. He knew how difficult it was for both Nathan and Scott to come to terms with how strange their relationship was.
"Goodnight, Nathan and thank you for what you said to my lost and time traveling son," he said.
"You're welcome." Cable looked around the room where clean-up activities were progressing at a furious rate. "This is gonna be straightened up in no time."
"Yes," Charles said. "And tomorrow, Bobby and Remy are going to learn how to replace window panes." Nathan grinned and left.
Hank and Scott returned from med lab and pitched in with the clean-up effort.
"How are your hands, Scott" Charles asked. Scotty shrugged.
"Superficial cuts," Hank said succinctly. "Though he was a damn idiot to try picking up all that glass with his bare hands." Scott glared at him.
"I couldn't stand listening to Remy cry any more," he protested. "It distracted me." No one said a word.
Bobby folded over the tops of several doubled brown paper bags, full of glass. "I'm gonna take these out to the garbage," he said wearily. "Is it okay if I go on to bed? And can I check in on Remy?" His breath caught again in a shuddering after-sob.
"Of course, Bobby," Charles said gently. Bobby approached him hesitantly and Charles held out his arms. Bobby gratefully accepted another hug. "It's over, son. You misbehaved, you were punished and it's over. Let it go." Bobby nodded, still feeling shaky. He stood and Hank loomed in front of him, gathering him into another hug. Bobby grabbed the bags and fled.
Bishop, Warren, and Betsy also said their good nights and left. The rest looked at one another.
"I'm waiting right here for Logan to come back," Hank said firmly. "I don't think I've ever been quite so annoyed with and worried about our Canadian berserker in the entire time I've known him." Ro nodded her agreement. Jean and Scott looked at one another.
"Logan's not okay," Jean said quietly. "And I doubt I could sleep without knowing how this works out." Scott nodded and looked down at his bandaged hands. Logan was not the only one of the group who had been stressed beyond his normal behavior. They all waited.
When Logan got back down to the study, Charles, Hank, Ro, Scott, and Jean were still there. Logan looked at most of his oldest friends and shuddered. Hank looked at him, shook his head, drew himself up to his full six feet and five inches, grabbed Logan by his shoulders, picked him up, and slammed him against the wall. Logan didn't even try to resist.
"Okay," he said. "Okay." Hank took a whiff of his breath.
"Have you been drinking?" Hank asked. Logan shut his eyes and nodded. "In front of Remy?" Logan nodded again with red flush rising on his cheeks. "Great example for you to set for the kid."
"I know," Logan said. "I know, Hank. I screwed up again. Does that satisfy you? It's the only thing I can do today."
"How much?" Charles intervened.
"Four shots," Logan confessed. "And dammit all to hell, I'm tempted to finish the damn bottle later."
"I don't think that would be a good idea, Logan," Charles said gently. Logan nodded, but reserved judgement about what he might do. Hank continued to hold him up against the wall.
"Logan," Hank said ominously. "What did I tell you I would do if you risked letting Remy hurt you?"
"You said you'd make me wish I was dead," Logan admitted. "I wasn't thinkin.' I was just worried about Remy. I'm sorry."
"Sorry, doesn't cut it," Beast growled. "You gambled letting him hurt you and that is totally unacceptable. Then you risked scaring the hell out of him with your own anger with yourself. What on earth is going on with you?"
"I don't fucking know, Hank," Logan snapped. "I blew it. I blew everything and if you're gonna fucking hit me, go ahead and fucking hit me, dammit."
"Do you want me to?" Hank asked him.
"Yeah, I fucking think I do," Logan said, glaring at him furiously.
Hank glared right back at Logan and jerked Logan around with his face against the wall. Hank held him there with a strong hand planted on his back and then blazed a trio of furiously hard whacks against the seat of Logan's jeans with all the force of his more than 300 pounds of solid muscle. Logan gasped with pain as each one landed. Tears rose in his eyes and he felt wretched.
"Enough, Hank," Charles said. "I think Logan is a hell of a lot more upset than you realize." Hank turned Logan around again and looked into his face with concern as he continued to hold him by the shoulders.
"I was finished anyway," Hank said. "Logan, what on earth is wrong with you? Don't tell me that you, of all people, have tears in your eyes because I hurt you? I know I did, but that isn't why."
Logan tried to take a deep breath, but found it catching on what felt like a sob. He froze his chest. "Actually, Hank, I think part of it is because you hurt me," he said honestly and reluctantly. "There's something about getting the hell smacked out of me by someone who I know loves me that hurts my guts. Got nothin' to do with how much it hurts physically. Maybe has to do with feeling like I deserve to beaten to hell and back." Hank groaned and shook his head.
"And why on earth would you deserve to be beaten to hell and back?" he asked gently.
"I blew it, totally," Logan said angrily. "I blew everything. I hurt Remy. I said the wrong things. I almost managed to get myself blown up which would have made Remy miserable. I made him feel abused instead of punished. I brought back all those memories of being with Sinister. You can go ahead and swat the hell out of me again if you want to, Hank, but I do, dammit to hell, wish I was dead."
"I'd strongly recommend that you swat the hell out of him, again," Charles said quietly. Hank sighed and looked at Logan who closed his eyes and nodded. Hank turned him back, face against the wall and smacked him again with all his strength.
"GOD, fucking, dammit, Hank," Logan protested. "That fucking hurt."
"It was supposed to," Hank said, turning Logan back to face him. Tears welled and spilled out of his eyes.
"Let me go, Hank," Logan said simply. Hank released his shoulders and Logan simply slid down the wall and winced as his butt hit the floor. He held his breath, trying to fight the tightness in his chest. Tears continued to overflow. Hank sat down beside him and glared at him with worry.
Scott sat down on the couch, drew his legs up to his chest, and put his face in his hands. He felt dazed with confusion. Remy was in pieces. Bobby was throwing tantrums. And now, Logan, of all people, was falling apart. Logan. He was used to dealing with Wolverine when he went into one of his berserker rages and he knew how to manage that. But Logan in tears. Egads. Jean looked at him with warm amusement.
Hard to see Logan so upset? she asked through their link.
I don't know how to handle it, love, he sent back.
Let Charles and Hank and Ro handle it, sweetheart. Watch and learn. she suggested. Scott nodded.
"Logan," Hank said. "If you need to cry, will you, please, for goodness sakes, go ahead and cry? It isn't doing you any good to keep fighting it."
"I don't know how," Logan protested.
"No," Charles said clearly. "You're scared to."
Logan looked up at him with dismayed confusion, tears still rolling down his face. "How you know that, Charlie? Dammit, are you in my head again?"
"No, Logan. But I was there earlier. What happened to you when you were little and you cried?"
Logan's breath caught as he remembered. The very first time he could remember being thrown at a wall was his mother's response to his crying when he was about two. It scared the child out of his mind. He held his breath as long as he could and then it came out in a shuddering, deep, and shaking sob.
"Oh, hell," he spat out as his body started to shake with sobbing agony and he remembered more of the nightmare of his childhood.
"Hank, hold him," Charles directed. Hank tried to pull Logan away from the wall. Logan resisted, shaking his head.
"I don't think I can stand it," he choked out. He drew his knees up to his own chest and grabbed them.
"Being held?" Hank asked gently. Logan nodded. Hank sighed, rose to his knees, grabbed Logan by the shoulders, and once again essentially just picked him up, turned him around and gathered him into his arms. Hank sat back down again, holding him against his chest.
"Goddamnit, Hank, if it was anyone but you pulling this shit with me, I'd have my claws out," Logan growled as he continued to shake with suppressed sobs.
"Not many people except me would be strong enough," Hank said thoughtfully, "maybe the Hulk, although the image is ludicrous." Logan started laughing.
"Beyond ludicrous," Logan gasped out, shaking from a combination of laughter and sobs.
"Logan, may I, please, tell Jean and Scott what you remembered?" Charles asked. Logan nodded.
The professor filled in the other two on what had happened and Logan simply shook in Hank's arms as he listened to the hell of his memories. He was still holding his breath and fighting the tightness in his chest.
Jean and Scott were badly shaken by what they were told. Ro who had heard the whole story already was shaken again.
Logan was caught in a hellacious internal cycle. He was tormented by images of the abuse in his early childhood, and then tormented by the idea that he had abused Remy as badly as he had been hurt. "I fucked everything up with Remy," he said roughly. "I hurt him bad. I sent him back into the agony of his rotten memories."
"He needed to go there, Logan," Charles said. "You helped him recover the memory of another trauma. He needs to work through them. You helped him. Stop feeling so guilty about it. Deal with your own memories."
"He can't stop cryin,' Charlie. He's a mess," Logan protested.
"He needs to cry. And as far as I can tell, you're a mess, right now, too," Charles said firmly. "And you need to cry as badly as he does. You're just obsessing about what happened with Remy to avoid your own pain."
"Every damn thing I did was wrong," Logan insisted. "Everything. And I fucking hate crying."
"Nonsense," Charles said firmly. "You love him. You punished him appropriately. You went out of bounds a few times, but he doesn't know it. Stop punishing yourself. And stop fighting your need to cry."
"I can't," Logan insisted. Charles looked at Hank, raising his eyebrow. Hank nodded, reached down, and blazed another ferocious whack against Logan's butt.
"God fucking dammit, Hank," Logan gasped as another sob burst out of him. "If you fucking do that again, I'm gonna lose it." Hank did it again and Logan lost it. He started sobbing again with deep and intense pain.
"I can't. . .stand Remy's pain," he choked out.
"You can't stand your own pain," Charles said quietly. "Remy reminds you too much of yourself. Deal with it, Logan. In many ways you're the most adult of all us and in many ways you're the most wounded of all of us. Deal with yourself, would you, please?" Logan nodded and continued to cry deeply from his guts. Ro paced.
Hank held Logan tightly and waited for his sobs to subside. "Oh, gods, I'm sorry," Logan said uncomfortably.
Scott hesitated and then spoke, "Logan, you have nothing at all to be sorry about. I know you and I have had our conflicts in the past, but, hey, man, I respect the hell out of you for dealing with this stuff. And I. . .I. . .oh, hell, I love you, Logan. I don't know what in hell we'd do without you."
Logan shuddered again. "Thanks, Scotty," he said.
"I think I need to get this man to bed," Storm said resolutely. "He's had a rough day and is facing another hard day tomorrow. I think he wants to spank Remy again about as much as I want to crawl over broken glass. Can we all just please go to bed?"
Charles nodded. He looked toward Logan and spoke again. "You made some mistakes, old friend. But you didn't blow it. You did just fine in impossible circumstances. Remy knows you love him and that he had to be punished again. You did just fine."
Logan pulled himself out of Hank's arms and looked at the professor. "He asked me if it would be okay if he just cried all day, tomorrow," he said.
Charles nodded. "I think it would be fine and appropriate for Remy to just cry all day, tomorrow. He's being punished for very bad behavior and it's okay for him to be miserable as hell. Stop being so angry with yourself, Logan."
"I'll try," Logan said. "These memories got me a little on edge."
"A little?" Hank queried. "Sorta like that damn little tree?" A snort of laughter escaped from Logan. He nodded.
"Yeah, just like the damn "little* tree," he acknowledged. "Right through my guts instead of my chest."
"As well can be understood, old friend. You have a lot to cope with," Charles said gently. Logan nodded. He looked up at Ro who reached out a hand to him. He let her help him up and looked around at Jean, Scott, Hank, and Charles.
"Thanks, all of you for puttin' up with me freakin' out," he said. Jean came over and hugged him.
"I love you, Logan," she said. He squeezed her tightly and nodded.
"Love you, too, Jeannie," he said. Hank cleared his throat.
"We all love you, Logan," he said quietly. Logan nodded, accepted a clasp on his arm from Scotty, and looked at Charles.
"Thank you," he said gruffly. Charles nodded again. Logan nodded back an acknowledgement and left with Ro.
Hank looked at Charles. "Is he really okay?" he asked with deep concern.
"Has Logan ever really been okay for as long as we've known him?" Charles asked grimly. "He deals well with his pain, but he has more demons inside him than most people encounter in several lifetimes. It's probably the best thing in the world for him to start to recover some of his memories, but I'd be a lot happier if the memories were a little less traumatic. You look worried, Scott."
"Could just be my natural expression," Scott offered with a faint grin.
"Oh, my stars and garters," Hanks said wonderingly. "Two jokes in one evening." He reached out and felt Scott's forehead as if checking for fever. Scott swatted his hand away affectionately.
"I'm worried he'll take off, " Scott admitted. "He always does when he's really upset. He leaves us and runs off to work it out on his own. And, I don't think we can spare him right now."
"He won't run out on Remy while the boy needs him," Jean said certainly.
"I think Jean's right," Charles said gently. "I certainly hope she's right. I don't think Remy could handle it. And I, for one, am very tired and I think it would be good if we tried to get back on a normal schedule around here and have an early work out in the danger room." The others nodded.
Logan sank into the bed in Ro's loft. He looked at her carefully. "I don't want to talk about any of this," he said.
Ro sighed deeply. "And do you really think that's what's best for you, love?" she asked.
"No," Logan said honestly. "But it's all I can handle right now. I'm so overloaded that I think I'm close to exploding."
"And what happens if you explode, dear?" she asked worriedly.
"I'm afraid I'd run," he said honestly. "Take off and run."
Ro paced up and down the loft. "Oh, that would be great, Logan," she said irritably. "That would just do wonders for Remy's sense of security and stability."
"I don't want to explode, darlin.' I'd kinda like to avoid it," Logan said mildly. "And I sure as hell don't want to run out on Remy or you."
"So, don't you think it would be best to talk about at least some of it and what it means for you and me?" Ro asked acerbically. "Don't you think that your early relationship with your mother might have some meaning for you and me?"
"Okay, okay," Logan sighed deeply. He patted the bed beside him. "Just lie down with me, darlin.'"
"I'm too upset to just lie down," Ro said as she continued to pace. "Logan, are you anywhere near okay?"
"No," he said. He rolled over to his stomach, clasped a pillow in his arms and rested his chin on it. "Goddamn, Hank is strong," he commented. Ro stopped dead in the middle of the floor and laughed.
"Does your butt still hurt?" she asked with affection.
"Damn straight," Logan admitted. "My healing factor heals, darlin.' It doesn't block out the pain. I think I have an entirely new appreciation of what I'm putting Remy through. Though if I smacked him as hard as Hank smacked me, which I'm not sure I have the strength to do, he'd have a broken coccyx, if not a broken pelvis." Ro laughed again.
"Well, I certainly hope that you don't plan to smack the boy that hard," she giggled.
"Never," Logan said fervently. "Hell, Ro, at this point, I don't want to smack the kid at all any more. I'm tired of hurting him. I'm sick about how much he's hurting."
"Logan, he's being punished for serious misbehavior. He needs it."
"I know. Didn't say I wasn't gonna. Just said I didn't want to."
"Fine. What about you?"
"Well, obviously, I had a mother from hell," Logan said simply. "Wonder what I did in a past life to deserve that."
"Maybe you didn't do a damn thing in any life to deserve it," Ro said firmly. "Maybe it just happened."
"Maybe," Logan admitted. "And now I got a lot to deal with. And a lot for John to help me deal with."
"My analyst," Logan explained. He sighed deeply. "Ro, I don't want you to be my therapist. I want you to be my woman. I don't want to work this out with you. Just want to love you and be loved by you. And I want you and me to put all this behind us and go to bed."
"I don't want to be left out, love," Ro said.
Logan sighed again. He reached out for her and gathered her into his arms. "Darlin,' I won't leave you out again. I'll tell you what I'm doing to deal with this shit if I know what I'm doin.' I can't clue you in on my unconscious if I ain't clued in. I didn't plan to go out and wreck my bike today. It just happened because I needed it to happen. Hey, if I know for a fact that I'm plannin' to be self-destructive, I'll be sure to let you know."
Ro laughed again. "You better clue me in, love," she said gently. "Or I'll rain lightning down on your silly head." Logan kissed her deeply and reached up under her shirt to caress her breasts. "Logan, are you trying to distract me?"
"Mmmhmm," he murmured as he reached another hand into her shorts and inside the waistband of her panties. She shivered as he continued to caress her and felt a mounting excitement. He rolled her over on the bed and started to remove her clothes.
"Logan," she gasped.
"Hush," he said as he stripped her bare. He nibbled at her breasts and moved his tongue down her body to her private places. She gasped again as he started to lick between her legs. She remembered the spanking he had given her earlier that day and her excitement mounted. He continued to lick and she shuddered her way to an intense climax, pushing his head away from her. He pulled off his clothes and hovered above her.
"You ready, love?" he asked. She nodded and he entered her, rocking against her pelvis and gliding gently in and out. His pace quickened, slowed, and quickened until he felt her rising against him and then he moved hard and fast. She grabbed his butt and he gasped and then they both surged into climax. He felt as if he were falling from a million miles to earth and sighed with pleasure. They held each other.
"Oh, that was good," Ro gasped. He chuckled.
"Yep," he acknowledged.
"We still have more to talk about, dear," she said sleepily.
"Yep," he admitted. She nodded and slowly drifted off to sleep. Logan held her for several more moments and then let go, got up, and put his clothes back on. He left the loft and made his way back down the stairs to the liquor cabinet. He hesitated a moment and then grabbed the bottle of Glenfiddich again, taking it out to the porch with a glass. He poured himself a drink and lit a cigar as he sat on the steps.
He drank and smoked for a while looking out at the trees and lake until he heard a noise above him. He looked up and saw Remy climbing out his window and up to the roof, his favorite brooding place. Logan shrugged, grabbed his bottle and climbed up. Remy had taken his pillow with him and was sitting on it on the part of his roof over his window.
"Hi, kiddo," Logan said as he settled down beside Remy. "Havin' a hard time sleeping?"
Remy jumped slightly. "Yeah," he said shakily. "You, too?"
"Yep," Logan said. He looked at Remy carefully in the moonlight. "Let's talk, Rem."