Subject: Family Matters Chapter 24 (F/M?m?nc, no sex, flirting, plot.)
From: dswdiane@aol.com (Dswdiane)
Date: 14 Feb 1999 23:00:08 -0800

Family Matters, chapter 24

Remy sat up in bed, giving up on the hope of more sleep. "Is dere anyt'ing left on dat tray?" he grumbled. "I'm hungry."

Logan looked at him, bemused. "Tray is long gone, kiddo. You want me to get you some food?"

"No," Remy said hurriedly. "I mean, I'm not dat hungry. It don' matter."

Jean looked at Remy thoughtfully. "You don't want Logan to leave," she said quietly. Remy flushed. "It's okay, sweetie. I'll go get something. I'm not sure I trust Bobby to get adequate provisions, anyway. Be back in a second, guys." Jean went out the door.

Remy looked at Logan carefully, then looked away and down. "My butt hurts," he said, reaching under himself and feeling gingerly.

"Bet it does, kiddo," Logan said compassionately. "I spanked you hard last night."

Remy winced as he found an especially sore spot and looked up at Logan with miserable eyes. "You mad at me?" he asked unhappily.

Logan's mouth jerked slightly. "No more than the usual dull roar of total exasperation and frustration," he admitted.

Remy grinned in spite of himself and for at least a moment the misery faded from his eyes. "I guess I do drive you nuts," he conceded. "But dat wasn' a dream?"

"No, kiddo, it wasn't a dream," Logan said, moving to a chair beside the bed and flopping down in it. "You tried to beat yourself up and I spanked you soundly."

"Most of which I heard about this morning," Dr, McIntyre stood in the doorway. Remy almost jumped out of his skin. "Yes, your nurse peeked in more than once, young man. But she thought what was going on was being well handled by your 'Dad' here. I, for one, would like to know more about it."

Remy blushed intensely and stared down at his bed.

"And for starters, Remy," the doctor continued, "I'd like for you to roll over, pull down your pants, and let me get a look at that well-spanked bottom of yours."

Remy's face felt as if it couldn't possibly get any hotter. He looked at Logan who in turn looked at Dr. McIntyre.

"What's the point, Doc?" Logan asked protectively. The doctor looked away and took a deep breath.

Before she could open her mouth, Logan spoke again. "I think she wants to make sure I'm not abusing you, kiddo, " he said flatly. "And it's your choice, Remy. It's your butt. She's got no right to look at it without your permission."

Logan looked steadily at Dr. McIntyre. "You might have just lost points with me, Sandra," he said. She didn't look either him or Remy in the eyes.

Remy flushed, rolled over in his bed, and, cringing with embarrassment, took his pants down below his bottom, baring it for the doctor's scrutiny.

"Go ahead and look," he said defiantly. "Logan'd never hurt me."

"Well," Dr. McIntyre said, "I can tell he's had a spanking, but you certainly didn't do any serious damage, Logan." Remy jerked his pants back up and rolled over in his bed, glaring at his doctor.

Logan snorted. "I'd hope not," he said shortly.

"Look," the doctor said angrily, "I have to check. I have to know. I can't just trust my instincts."

"Your instincts betrayed you in the past?" Logan asked.

Remy looked at Logan with an eyebrow raised. "Sandra?" Remy asked belatedly.

"Your doctor told me to call her Sandra last night, kiddo," Logan said briefly. "I thought it was because she liked us."

She flushed. "I do like you," she said. "And, no, my instincts haven't betrayed me. I happen to be a resident, guys. I have to go by the book. Your nurse didn't put the incident on the chart, but she asked me to check it out. I could get in deep trouble if I didn't."

"Unreported child abuse?" Logan asked wryly, raising an eyebrow.

The doctor threw her hands up and glared at both of them. "I'm sorry," she said tersely. "I was wrong."

Logan looked at Remy who shrugged, and turned back to Dr. McIntyre. "It's okay, Sandra," he said quietly. "What did the nurse tell you?"

The doctor took a long, deep breath and turned to Remy. "I said I was sorry, young man. Do you accept my apology?"

Remy nodded reluctantly. His doctor turned to Logan. "She said that Remy was trying to hit himself in the face with his fist. She said that you warned him and when he wouldn't stop, you put him over your knees, took his pants down, and spanked him soundly. I think she approved."

Remy blushed and turned over in his bed, hiding his face in the pillows.

"Well, your nurse reported exactly what happened," Logan said. "Does that meet with your approval?"

"What the hell difference would that make?" Sandra asked irritably.

Logan just looked at her. She took another deep breath and calmed down. "Yes," she said. "I don't want my patient to hurt himself."

"I don't ever want Remy to hurt himself," Logan said. "Look, we're all too upset to discuss this calmly. Why don't we take a break? Remy, stop burying yourself in your bed. Let Sandra examine you and give you a green light to get out of this hospital. Sandra, I love this kid. I'd never hurt him. And I think you know that. So, let's get on with it."

Remy pulled himself out of his blankets and pillows. Dr. McIntyre started to examine him. Logan stared out the window and thought.

"Where the hell are Jean and Bobby?" he asked suddenly.

* * *

Jean had found the hospital cafeteria and had quickly determined that Bobby wasn't there. She considered the possibility that he might have already gotten food and coffee and headed back to Remy's room, but she wasn't sure she knew what Bobby might be doing. His behavior that morning was setting off alarms inside her head.

She let her mind seek out Bobby telepathically, hoping she would find him on his way back up to Remy's room.

She didn't find him at all. She continued sweeping the hospital and near the hospital as she went through a cafeteria line and bought food and drink. There was no trace of Bobby.

* * *

As the doctor examined him, Remy looked over at Logan. "You want me to look for them psychically?" he asked.

Logan shook his head. "No, if they aren't back in the next five minutes, I'll go looking," he said. "You need to conserve energy, kiddo. I want you outta here."

"He will be out of here, Logan," Dr. McIntyre said. "I'm going to release him today as soon as I have time for the paperwork. Which will never happen unless I finish my rounds. I'll talk to you before you leave."

"Thanks, Sandra," Logan said absently as he continued to wonder where Jean and Bobby were. The doctor nodded and left.

A minute later, Jean bumped open the door to Remy's room with her hip and came in with a stack of styrofoam boxes, a full cup holder balancing precariously on top. Logan flowed to his feet, quickly moved to her side, and started helping her unload.

"Bobby been back here?" Jean asked anxiously.

"Nope," Logan said, giving Jean a sharp glance as he grabbed coffee and started looking in the boxes. "Jesus, Jeannie, you planning to feed the Mongolian hordes?"

Jean had brought scrambled eggs, fried eggs, bacon, sausages, toast, croissants, and danishes. She had also brought three large containers of coffee and the largest soft drink cup that was available, full of orange juice.

"I thought we'd share, Logan," Jean said. "And I'm willing to bet you, Bobby, and Remy will eat 90 per cent of this. If Bobby ever reappears." Jean looked at Logan with acute worry in her eyes.

"And if Bobby doesn't," Logan said lightly, gulping coffee, while staring back at Jean with equal worry on his face, "I'm willing to bet that Remy and I can handle most of it."

Remy was out of his bed and intently investigating the food possibilities as he virtually inhaled a cheese danish. "Anyone care if I eat these eggs?" he asked.

"Eat whatever you want, Rem," Logan said. "I ate your eggs. Jeannie, have you scanned for Bobby?" Remy took several gulps of orange juice and handed the cup to Logan who swallowed half of it, then offered it to Jean who shook her head. Logan gave the cup back to Remy who looked skeptically at what was left and finished it.

"He's not in the hospital," Jean said. Remy sat back down on his bed and looked up from his food as what Jean and Logan were discussing sank in.

"Where's Bobby?" he asked, picking up on the anxiety in the room.

Logan sighed. "That's what we're trying to figure out, kiddo."

* * *

Bobby was at Carol's house, banging on the door and wondering if anyone would ever answer. He was considering giving up on the entire enterprise and going back to the hospital. He thought that maybe a lack of an answer at the door might be a sign from the fates that he wasn't quite on the right track.

When the door abruptly opened, he wondered if he had stayed too long. He had serious misgivings.

Carol glared out at him. "Yeah?" she demanded sleepily and suspiciously.

"Hi," Bobby said quickly. "I'm Bobby, friend of Remy's."

Carol stared at him and nodded. "Yeah, I remember you. You were here last night. Remy okay?" She turned back into the house. Bobby followed her.

"Yeah," Bobby said. "He's fine. Should be getting out of the hospital today."

Carol walked carefully into the living room as if she wasn't quite sure she trusted herself to maintain her balance and settled down on the couch. "Good," she said briefly. "Idiot did way too much smack. Don't know what he thought he was doing. You want some coffee?"

"I'd love some coffee," Bobby said. "And I think Remy just sorta wanted to get away from it all."

Carol snorted briefly and gestured in the direction of the kitchen. "Should be coffee made in there. I put it on a timer last night."

"You want a cup?" Bobby asked as he headed that way.

"Yeah, large mug. Sugar, lots of milk." Carol leaned her head back and closed her eyes.

When Bobby came back with two mugs of coffee, she looked as if she hadn't moved. She took the cup he put in her hands without opening her eyes, took a tentative sip to test the temperature and then a large swallow. She sighed with pleasure and stretched, opening her eyes.

"Well, thanks, lover," Carol said. "That's just what a girl needed. Now, you wanna tell me exactly what you're here for?"

Bobby took several gulps of his coffee and wondered how he was going to approach the subject. "Well," he said. "I could tell you that I'm here to get Remy's stuff. Or I could tell you that I find you so lovely that I couldn't leave Seattle without seeing you again. And both would be partly true."

Carol snorted again. "And the real reason?" she asked.

Bobby shrugged. He was well aware of the passage of time and sure that Jean and Logan would soon be on his tracks. "I really wanna get high," he said lightly.

"And you think I'm the most likely local connection?" Carol grinned and shook her head. "How do I know you're not a narc? And how do you know I didn't get rid of my stash after that idiot Cajun brought ambulances and cops to my door?"

"I figured you're a smart girl," Bobby said. "And I figured that if you did have to dump your stuff that maybe I could help you get some more. It's just, Carol, if I'm gonna do it, I gotta do it soon or now. Logan and Jean'll be tracking me down soon and we gotta leave today."

"Logan's the one who was giving Remy CPR, last night?" Carol asked. Bobby nodded. "Why do I get the feeling that if I turn you on, he isn't gonna be any too pleased?"

"He won't be," Bobby finished his coffee and looked at Carol. "I could use another cup. You want me to get you a refill?"

Carol nodded and handed Bobby her mug. He was back in moments with fresh mugs. Carol re-entered the room as Bobby did. She carried a book which she opened on the coffee table. It was hollowed out, containing a bag of brown powder and several disposable hypodermics.

"Well, lover, it can't be said that I'll pass up an excuse to get wasted," she said, grinning. "Why don't you truck on back out to the kitchen and get some water and a couple of spoons." She lit a candle on the table and started to pull the contents out of the book.

Bobby nodded. There were butterflies in his stomach and his head was full of second thoughts, but he figured he had until putting the needle in his arm and pushing the plunger to change his mind.

* * *

Remy stared intently at Jean and Logan as he continued to eat. "Dere's somet'ing dat you guys aren't tellin' me," he said accusingly. "Dere's some reason you worried as hell bout Bobby."

Jean and Logan looked at one another. Logan shook his head and Jean shrugged.

Do you really think it would hurt to tell him? she sent to Logan. He might be able to help us find Bobby.

He's still recovering from almost killing himself, Logan thought back at her.

Remy looked at both of them suspiciously and shoved his food aside. "I wanna know what's goin' on wit Bobby," he said firmly.

Jean looked at Logan again. He might have some ideas, she sent.

Logan shook his head again, glowering at Jean. If there's any damn thing Remy doesn't need to know, it's that Bobby might be crazy jealous of all the attention Rem's getting for being in trouble.

Remy's eyes went wide. "You gotta be kidding." he said.

"Blast it, kiddo," Logan said irately. "Isn't it considered bad manners to eavesdrop on other folks' private conversations?"

"I didn't know he could do that," Jean said with bemusement.

Remy ignored both of them. He closed his eyes, then he said, "I got him. He's at Carol's. Just about to shoot up. I gotta go after him. Now."

Logan leaped toward Remy. "REMY," he yelled, "don't you dare teleport. I mean it, kiddo. DO NOT teleport yourself."

Logan jumped toward Remy who shrugged and disappeared. Logan groaned and headed for the door. "Jean, stay here," he ordered.

"Like hell." Jean went right after him, running down the hall at Logan's side. "I can fly you there faster than you can get any cab to take you."

Logan shrugged and changed directions to head for the roof of the hospital. "No one fucking listens to me," he grumbled. Jean grinned and stayed with him.

* * *

Remy fell to his knees as he materialized in Carol's living room. His entire body was covered with clammy sweat. He trembled, gasped for breath, and the room swam in front of his eyes. In the swimming motion, he could see Bobby gaping at him. Bobby had a belt tied around his upper arm and a needle in his hand.

"Oh, fuck," Remy choked out. "Bobby, don'."

Bobby's open-mouthed gape turned into a glare of irritation. "What the fuck are YOU doing here?" he demanded. "And who in hell are you to tell me what to do? Fuck off." Bobby looked back down at the veins on his arm and positioned the needle over one of them.

Remy took a deep shuddering breath. He was weak as a new-born kitten and none of his powers worked. He couldn't have charged a match and he had no more telepathy than a rock.

Remy threw himself on the ground and rolled, careening into Bobby. The needle went flying as Bobby and Remy landed in a tangled heap against the wall. Out of the corner of his eye, Remy saw Carol jump to her feet, pick up the fallen hypodermic, blow out the candle, and gather up her supplies from the floor where the toppled-over table had landed them. She scurried to the doorway to watch.

Bobby tried to throw Remy away and Remy held on desperately to Bobby's waist. Bobby threw a fist and hit Remy in the eye.

Pain exploded in Remy's head, but he held on, rolling over so that Bobby was beneath him. Bobby bucked hard and threw Remy against the wall. Remy threw himself forward and butted Bobby in the face with his forehead and hit him square on the nose, while still clutching each side of Bobby's shirt in an iron grip.

Bobby blinked back sudden tears. Blood dripped from his battered nose. He threw a knee into Remy's stomach. Remy doubled up, but continued to hang on.

"Let GO, dammit, Rem!" Bobby demanded. He took a deep breath and suddenly Remy's upper body and arms were encircled by bands of ice. Bobby pushed hard and Remy fell away.

Remy sat on the floor for a moment, closed his eyes and concentrated. The ice exploded, taking about half of Remy's sweat shirt with it. Bobby backed away. The room swam in front of Remy's eyes and he felt himself starting to topple over. Two strong hands caught him by the shoulders and he felt himself being propped up against the wall.

Remy breathed deeply, letting his head fall between his drawn-up knees. The hands stayed on his shoulders and when he was able to open his eyes, Bobby was staring into his face, looking worried as hell under the blood that flowed from his nose and was smeared all over his face.

"You okay, Rem?" Bobby asked anxiously.

Remy stared at him askance. "Am I okay?" he repeated. "You mean like besides de fact dat I done made myself sick as hell by teleportin' an' prolly have a fuckin' black eye? Not t' mention de fact dat I burned myself blastin' dat damn ice off me. Ot'er dan dat, I'm just peachy."

He and Bobby stared at one another for a moment. Bobby's mouth twitched. Remy's eyes lit slightly. "An' you, mon ami?" Remy went on. "You doin' okay besides dat nose dat's bleedin' like fuckin' geyser?"

"Oh, I'm having a great day," Bobby said blithely, grinning suddenly.

Remy continued to stare at him skeptically for a few seconds and then started laughing. Bobby let go of Remy's shoulders, flopped down on the floor in front of the Cajun and joined him in laughing.

"An' Logan's gonna kill me for teleportin' outta de hospital," Remy choked as he kept on laughing. "I'm havin' a great day, too."

"Oh, yeah," Bobby chimed in. "And everyone, especially your dad, is gonna kill me if I do what I wanna do here. Dammit, Remy, I wanna shoot up. What the hell problem is it of yours?"

"I don' know," Remy tried to compose himself. "Bobby, dis is somet'ing you really wanna do?"

"No, Remy, I'm a fuckin' pod person being controlled by robots from Alpha Centauri. Of course, I wanna shoot up, you dope. Why the fucking hell you wanna try to interfere? Somebody appoint you to the committee on X-men Morality?"

"X-men, huh?" Carol suddenly appeared in front of them and tossed each of them a cold wet wash cloth. "You guys do any other tricks besides appearing out of nowhere, ice shackles, and explosions? And fighting with each other?"

"Thanks, cher," Remy said. "An' yeah, we do lots of tricks. You should see de tricks dat Logan can do."

Bobby snorted. "I doubt she'd wanna see the tricks Logan can do. Specially since most of them leave people wounded or dead."

"So, I'd guess you're Iceman?" Carol said calmly, sitting back down on her sofa, lighting the candle again, and starting to cook a dose of heroin in one of the spoons. "And maybe your friend, Logan, is Wolverine? Both of you were wearing damn strange costumes when you showed up here last night."

"You've heard of us?" Bobby grinned.

"Who hasn't?" Carol responded coolly. "You gonna shoot up with me or not, Bobby or Iceman or whatever you wanna be called? And you want some, Remy? Maybe a normal dose this time?"

Remy shuddered and shook his head. He looked at Bobby intently. "You really wanna do this shit, man?" he asked with sincere concern.

"I really want to, Remy," Bobby said carefully.

"An' it's got nothing to do wit me gettin' myself in trouble?" Remy asked, holding the cold wash cloth to his sore eye and looking carefully at Bobby with his uninjured eye.

"Hell, Cajun, I don't know what it has to do with. I just know I wanna do it," Bobby said. He took a deep breath. "Remy, you got your demons. I got mine. I just know I wanna try it. Just once. Maybe I'm jealous you did something I haven't done. I don't know. But are you gonna stay outta my way and let me do my thing and get in my own trouble?"

"You wanna do somet'ing I done dat you hadn't, huh?" Remy shrugged. "You wanna maybe work for Sinister, too? An' carry around a huge case of de guilts?"

Bobby groaned. "Oh, fuck, Remy, let it go," he said impatiently. "I'm tired as hell of your fucking guilt trip on yourself. You've paid and paid for every damn thing you've ever done wrong. We're all tired as hell of your whining self pity."

Remy glared at Bobby for a moment, then flushed strongly, and looked down. "Sorry," he mumbled, staring at the floor.

Bobby sighed and punched Remy on the shoulder. "Sorry, myself, amigo," he said sincerely. "You don't really whine. Much."

Remy kept looking at the floor. "I t'ink maybe I do whine way too much," he said, honestly, his face still pink with embarrassment. He took a breath and looked up at Bobby, grinning. "But you go ahead and shoot up some smack, Bobbo. I'll bet you'll be whinin' in de next day t' come."

"I might well be," Bobby said calmly. "But it's my fucking choice, Rem."

Remy nodded and sat back. Bobby pulled himself to his feet, finished mopping most of the blood off his face, walked to the couch beside Carol, wrapped the belt around his upper arm, took the hypodermic from her, found a vein, inserted the needle, pushed the plunger, and lay back on the couch, gasping.

Remy watched with worried concern as Bobby shuddered and then grinned suddenly.

"Hey, this is really cool. . .and I gotta throw up. NOW." Bobby lurched out of the room with Carol guiding him to the bathroom.

Carol and Bobby were still in the bathroom when the front door was shattered. Logan burst in, claws still out and Jean was close behind him.

Logan looked at Remy with a combination of worry, irritation, concern, and rage on his face. "How the hell did you get that shiner, kiddo?" he demanded. "Did you and Bobby fight? And where the fuck is that brat?"

Remy sighed and pointed toward the bathroom. "He's throwin' up," Remy said wearily. "An' yeah, I got de shiner, tryin' t' stop him. An' den I decided not t' try t' stop him. Decided it was his choice an' his funeral." Jean ran the way Remy had pointed. Logan stayed with Remy.

"I hope to hell and back it's not his funeral," Logan said furiously. "And what the hell did I tell you about teleporting out of the hospital?"

Remy sighed deeply. "You told me not t,'" he said quietly. "You yelled at me. An' I still did what I t'ought I needed t' do. You gonna punish me again?"

Logan marched over to the shattered door and began methodically slashing what was left of it into splinters that flew in every direction.

Remy ducked his head and shuddered. He was shaking all over and scared as hell.

When he finished with the door, Logan stood still for a moment. He closed his eyes and took several deep breaths, visibly calming himself and regaining control. He pulled his claws back in, went to Remy's side, crouched down, put his hand out and took Remy's face into his grasp. He looked carefully at Remy's injured eye. "You tried to stop him?" Logan said tightly.

"Yeah," Remy said, "but he talked me out of it. Logan, I'm sorry."

Logan nodded. "Okay, kiddo," he said. "Let's get you back to the hospital and get you out of it and home."

"Am I in trouble again?" Remy asked, trembling.

Logan looked at him attentively, "I told you not to teleport. You ignored me."

Remy nodded. "I had t' get to Bobby an' try t' stop him," he started.

"You can tell me what happened when I get you back to the hospital," Logan said firmly, interrupting what Remy had intended to be an explanation. Logan sighed in exasperation. "You're white as a sheet, kiddo. You need to be in bed."

Remy looked at him with miserable eyes. "Are you gonna punish me?" he asked again, stubbornly.

"Don't know," Logan said after thinking for a moment. "Haven't decided yet. But I do know that I need to get you back to the hospital. You don't even look like you can get up without help."

"Don' t'ink I can," Remy admitted. Logan put a hand under his arm and helped the Cajun to his feet.

Jean came back in, dragging a protesting Bobby by the arm. Carol trailed after and gasped as she looked at her door.

"I don't want to see Logan," Bobby was saying.

"And I don't particularly want to see you either, ice brat," Logan said, glowering at Bobby. "How is he, Jeannie?"

"He's high," Jean reported.

Bobby looked at Logan, looked away, and caught Remy's eye. "This stuff ain't bad, partner," he said.

Logan snorted. "Enjoy it while you can, Bobby," he said grimly. "You won't be enjoying yourself for long when you come down."

"Knew that before I took it, asshole," Bobby said cheerfully. "And if I get ten extra whacks for calling you an asshole, it'll be worth it."

"Bobby!" Jean protested.

"Let him be, darlin,'" Logan said. "He can call me whatever he wants. You just watch your mouth with Jeannie, Bobby, or you'll pay."

"Wouldn't dream of insulting Jean," Bobby said, still grinning. "Been in love with her since I was 15."

"Bobby!" Jean said again. Bobby blew her a kiss.

Remy looked at Logan and grinned. "I really wouldn't mind stayin' around for this show," he said.

"And a part of me'd like to do the same," Logan admitted. "But now you're up you're even whiter. And you're shaking like you're freezing and covered in goose bumps. Sit down a minute, kiddo." Logan guided Remy to the couch. "You got clothes here?" Remy nodded and gestured toward the stairs.

"I know where his room is," Bobby volunteered. "I can get his stuff."

"Great," Logan said shortly. "Why don't you?"

Bobby headed for the stairs. Logan looked at Jean. "I'm going after him," Logan said. "Shape he's in, he'll get distracted by the pretty sunlight out the windows."

Jean nodded and sat down with Remy while Logan followed Bobby.

"I really tried t' stop him," Remy said. His teeth were starting to chatter.

Jean sighed. "Sweetie, you probably weren't strong enough to stop him physically. And when Bobby makes up his mind, he's as stubborn as Logan. Please, don't blame yourself."

Bobby and Logan reappeared with Remy's bag. Bobby looked noticeably more subdued. "Nag, nag, nag," he muttered, glaring at the floor as he flopped down on the other side of Remy on the couch.

Carol had sat in a chair across from them and been observing closely. "What did the mighty and powerful Wolverine have to say to you, Bobby?" she asked.

"Just reminded me that the professor's gonna be none too pleased with me," Bobby said briefly. "And that my best and oldest friend is gonna be freaked as hell." He continued staring glumly at the floor for a moment, then looked up and grinned again. "But I might as well enjoy this while I can. I'll probably never do it again. You got any decent music, pretty lady?"

Logan had rummaged through Remy's bag and pulled out a t-shirt, a long sleeved shirt, and a sweatshirt. He tossed them to Jean. "Help the boy get these on. I'm gonna take him back to the hospital on my bike."

"Your bike?" Remy asked with confusion. "You got your bike here?"

"Left it here last night, kiddo," Logan explained, "when I rode in the ambulance with you."

"Wouldn't it make more sense for me to fly him?" Jean asked as she started to help Remy with his clothes.

"No," Logan said. "I think I need to be with Remy. And I want you to stay with Bobby and get him to the blackbird. If I stayed with el Bobbo, I think I might be tempted to rip his head off and stuff it up his ass. And I need you to get this girl's door repaired. Can you handle that, darlin'?"

"You got it," Jean agreed. "I can manage Bobby. And I have credit cards."

"Oh, boy," Bobby said enthusiastically. "I get to be managed by Jeannie. What a trip."

Logan rolled his eyes toward the ceiling and shot Jean a look of sympathy. She smiled. "It's okay, Logan. I've been dealing with Bobby since he was 15."

"Better you than me," Logan said. He took Remy by the arm and helped him up. Remy shook him off, stood unsteadily by himself, and looked at Carol.

"I t'ink dis is gonna be good-bye for now, p'tite," Remy said quietly. "T'anks for givin' me a place t' stay. An', cher, please, try t' get some help. I don' like seein' you like dis."

Carol got up and gave Remy a hug. "You may see me sooner than you think, sugar," she said. "And don't worry about me. I'll be fine."

"Why does Remy always get himself involved with women who call him sugar?" Bobby complained plaintively. "He's about as sweet as a lemon."

"Speak for yourself, ice boy," Carol said. "Remy's always been good to me."

"Has he?" Bobby asked with great interest. "Do tell me more. I can't wait to pass it on to Rogue." Carol frowned at him.

Remy groaned and swayed with exhaustion. Logan grabbed his arm again.

"Bobby won't be passing any gossip to Rogue, Remy," Jean said firmly. "Not if he values my opinion of him." She turned and stared firmly at Bobby who picked up a pillow and held it over his face.

"Help," Bobby said. "The girls are ganging up on me."

Logan shook his head and led Remy out the door. He climbed on his bike and pulled Remy on behind him.

"Put your arms all the way around my waist," Logan ordered. "I know you know how to ride a bike, but right now, you're weak as hell and I don't want you falling off."

Remy nodded and put his arms all the way around Logan. He rested his head against Logan's back. Logan revved up the bike and they took off.

Most of the trip back to the hospital was a blur for Remy. He was lost in his thoughts. He kept going over what had happened. What he had done with and said to Bobby. How Logan had looked when he burst into the room and when he splintered the door. What Logan had said when Remy had asked if he was going to be punished again. And over and over, thoughts of the punishment that had been promised. He was still shaking and very scared. At some point, he simply started crying again while hating himself for being such a blubbering fool. He clung to Logan's waist, rested his head against Logan's back and sobbed. The wind caught his tears and blew them away. As he shook with sobs, he felt Logan's hand come down on his arm and pat it gently. He sobbed even harder.

When they pulled up in front of the hospital, Logan turned, swinging his leg over the bike, and gathered Remy into a firm, rough hug.

"It's okay, kiddo," Logan said gruffly. "Go ahead and cry. It's been a hard day. And I think it's still morning." Remy sobbed into Logan's strong shoulder until he cried himself out and drew back shakily. He opened his mouth.

"DON'T say you're sorry again," Logan ordered. "I don't want to hear it."

Remy shut his mouth and nodded. Logan helped him off the bike and hustled the Cajun back up to his room.

Dr. McIntyre was standing there, tapping her foot and looking unhappy.

"Where have you been?" she demanded, approaching Remy and looking at him closely. "You look like hell."

She whirled to frown at Logan. "How do you expect me to release this boy when you've let him go off and wear himself out?"

"LET him?" Logan drew himself up, rigidly.

"Stop it!" Remy exclaimed. "Just stop it. Logan tried t' stop me. I went off on my own. He came after me an' brought me back. It's my fault. It's all my fault. Don' yell at Logan." His voice caught on another sob and he started crying again. Logan guided Remy to his bed and thrust him into it. He glared at Sandra who glared right back.

"How did you manage to go off on your own?" Sandra asked. "And why did you behave so foolishly?" The doctor took out a hypodermic, checked it and injected Remy quickly. "Xanax," she said to Logan who nodded.

Logan sat on the bed and gathered Remy back into his arms. "Hush," he murmured. "It's okay, kiddo. It's okay."

Remy clung to Logan gratefully and sobbed. Logan turned to the doctor and explained briefly. "One of Remy's best friends was about to shoot up heroin. Remy was in touch with him telepathically and the blasted brat teleported himself out of here to try to stop his friend. I went after him and brought him back. And I still want him out of this hospital and home. We've got a doctor there. Would it make you feel better to talk to him?"

Sandra nodded, got the phone number from Logan, and left. Remy continued to cry, holding tightly to Logan.

"Are you gonna punish me?" Remy choked out.

Logan sighed deeply. "You think you deserve to be punished again, kiddo?" he asked. Remy winced and slowly nodded his head.

"Why?" Logan asked. "You teleported outta here to try to help Bobby. Why do you think you deserve to be punished for trying to help a friend?"

"Cause I didn' stop him. I blew it," Remy sobbed out.

"That makes no damn sense," Logan said firmly. "Okay, now's the time to tell me what happened. Blow your nose first and stop crying."

Remy sat up, blew his nose and explained to Logan what had happened at Carol's house. Logan listened and then pulled Remy back into his arms.

"Rem," Logan started patiently. "You were weak as hell from teleporting and from almost killing yourself. You couldn't have stopped Bobby no matter what. If you deserve to be punished at all, it's for not listening to me when I told you not to teleport. You were too sick to handle it."

"Are you gonna punish me?" Remy asked again, still trembling.

Logan sighed deeply. He didn't let of Remy. "No," he said quietly. "You're not gonna be punished. I'll be damned if I'll even think about punishing anyone for not obeying orders. You were trying to save Bobby from making a huge mistake. But, kiddo, why in hell didn't you think to take me with you? I would've stopped Bobby from shooting up in a heartbeat."

"I knew you would," Remy answered. "An' I knew you'd blister his butt. I wan'ed t' stop him wit'out him havin' t' be punished."

"Kiddo," Logan said gently, "I think Bobby wants to have his butt blistered. I think he wants to know that we all care enough about him to punish him when he misbehaves. Just like you want to have your bottom spanked. And don't even begin to tell me that's not what you want."

Remy pulled back out of Logan's strong arms and looked up at him with tears streaming. "I know I deserve t' be punished, Logan," Remy sobbed out. "But not all day. Not all day wit' my pants down. I don' t'ink I can bear it. I t'ink it'd be too fuckin' much. I t'ink I'd go nuts. I know I'm whinin' and complainin' and I'm sorry." His voice rose slightly.

Logan looked into Remy's stricken face and sighed deeply. He gathered the Cajun back into a hug. "Where in hell did you get the idea that you're whining, kiddo?" Logan asked roughly.

"Bobby said he was tired of me whinin'," Remy admitted.

"Kiddo, you're not whining right now," Logan said firmly. "You're scared as hell. I can feel how scared you are through our link. And you're weak and pale and sick. I'm fucking worried about you."

Remy shuddered and relaxed into Logan's arms, still sobbing hard. "Please, Logan, not all day," he begged. Then he went slack and fell asleep.

* * *

Logan held Remy as the Cajun slept. He was staring at the ceiling with deep worry in his eyes when Dr. McIntyre came back into the room.

"He asleep?" she asked. Logan nodded. "Good. Let him sleep for a few hours and then we'll see if he's ready to be released. I talked to your friend, Dr. McCoy. He seems well prepared to take care of this boy when you get him home." She hesitated and then charged ahead. "But I want to know more details about how you plan to punish him. Logan, this kid almost died. I'm not sure how much corporal punishment he can take while he's this weak."

Logan sighed again. "Sandra," he said. "I've told him that he's gonna spend an entire day with his pants down and his bottom bare, either getting spanked or standing in a corner, waiting for his next spanking. But I'm getting very worried that he's not gonna be able to take it."

"He can't," Sandra said firmly. "Not on his feet."

"Got it," Logan acknowledged, "the plan will be revised."

Sandra nodded. She turned to walk out and then turned back again. "You really do love this kid, don't you?"

"Yeah," Logan said.

"Well, then if you want to hear my opinion?" Sandra offered. Logan nodded. "Then I say that a whole damn day of spanking might be more than he can handle emotionally. He might just blow a fuse. He's really on edge."

"Got it," Logan said again. "Thanks." Sandra nodded again and went out the door.

Logan reached out to Jean mentally. She responded immediately.

What's up? she asked.

Remy's sleeping and needs a few hours of rest, Logan sent back.

Good, Jean acknowledged. As everyone seems to have forgotten, we left out baggage at the hotel. And no one returned those vans to Pacific Bell.

Leave the fucking vans alone, Jeannie, Logan directed firmly. Take Bobby back to the hotel, get our shit together and get ready to get the blackbird that was left for us.

Any other orders, oh fearless leader? Jean sent a chuckle through their connection.

Oh, yeah, Logan sent back sarcastically, when you've got a spare moment, come back here and give me a blow job. . . ahh, shit, darlin,' that was uncalled for. I'm sorry.

Apology noted and accepted, Jean sent cheerfully. She paused. And, Logan, in another lifetime if I had met you before meeting Scott, I would happily be in front of you on my knees, giving you whatever you wanted.

Logan took a second before responding, his heart skipping a beat. Jeannie, he sent, you know I feel for you what you feel for me. But Scottie and Ro don't ever need to know a thing about it.

We understand each other well, my dearest dear, Jean sent back. Oh, by the way, are you okay with me doing whatever I want with Bobby as soon as he comes down?

Whatever you like, love, Logan sent. You plannin' to get started on giving him part of the blistering he's got coming?

I was considering it.

Go for it, darlin.' Prove to the brat that he's much loved.

* * *

Jean dragged Bobby back to the hotel and put him to work, gathering and packing their luggage. By the time all was packed and ready to be moved, Bobby was down from his heroin high and discovering he didn't feel very good.

"My head hurts," he complained.

Jean looked at him with little sympathy in her eyes. "Sorry your head hurts, kiddo. You want some aspirin? Or Tylenol?" Bobby shook his head, thought better of it, and nodded. Jean reached into her bag and took out a pill bottle. He chose three aspirin. Jean paused then said, "You ready to start paying the price, Bobby, for your little flirtation with very hard drugs?"

Bobby flushed. "No," he said briefly. He looked at her warily. He really didn't like this turn of the conversation and he backed up against the wall.

"Too bad," Jean used her telekinetic powers to grab Bobby. She propelled him across the room and bent him over a table. He gasped and then gasped again as Jean used her powers to jerk his pants and underwear down to the middle of his thighs, baring his bottom. His stomach sank with utter dismay. He had expected to be spanked, but not by Jean.

"Jeannie, don't," Bobby protested, struggling against the telekinetic bonds that held him tight. He clenched his bare butt and wiggled. He fervently wished the floor would open and allow him to fall through. "Jean! Don't!" His voice rose in panic. He turned his head and stared at her, willing her to relent.

Jean ignored his protests and tried hard to ignore the pleading panic in his gaze. "Bobby," she said, "I'm looking for an appropriate paddle to blister your bottom. Hmmm, I think I like this hairbrush someone left behind. Nice flat wooden back to it. Should make your bottom sting smartly."

Bobby stared in horror and repelled fascination at the brush Jeannie had picked up. "No," he protested again. "Not you, Jeannie. Not from you. Please."

"Thought you wanted to find out if you were cared about, Bobby," Jean said calmly. "And I care about you. A lot. So, I'm going to prove it to you. But, you know, I'm not sure you're positioned exactly the way I want you."

Bobby cringed with embarrassment as Jean stared at his bare butt. Then he felt himself lifted slightly into the air. Jean slid a pillow under his stomach which effectively lifted his feet from the ground as she lowered him. He felt himself being slid forward on the table so that his bare bottom was poised high over the pillow. He flinched and clutched desperately at the other side of the table. His face felt as hot as teapot.

"Jeannie!" he protested again, "not from you. Anyone but you. . .YOW!" The brush descended across the middle of his up-turned bottom with a flaming smack.

"Anyone?" Jean asked, with little sympathy. The brush came down again, again, and again. Bobby tried to squirm away, futilely. "You'd want Sam doing this to you? Or Rogue? Hell, maybe you'd get off if it were Rogue doing this, kiddo. You've always had the hots for her."

Bobby felt his face get even hotter, and he continued to squirm as the brush descended fiercely, over and over. He clamped his teeth and tried not to cry out, but grunts of pain escaped anyway.

"You know," Jean said conversationally, "I never imagined I'd enjoy spanking anyone. But, Bobby, I'm actually getting some satisfaction out of watching your bottom turn red. I'm very unhappy with what you did today. I don't like you disappearing out the hospital, leaving me to look all over for you. And then leaving me and Logan to worry about you."

Bobby felt sick as he thought about Jean looking and about her and Logan worrying. Tears were welling in his eyes as his bottom flamed with pain. "S. . . sorry, Jeannie," he gulped out. She continued to smack his bottom firmly as he helplessly tried to wiggle away.

Jean went on, "I don't like it that Remy thought he had to teleport himself while he was sick to save your sorry butt. Making him even sicker. I don't like it that you gave him a black eye when he tried to stop you. Did you even think about the fact that he almost died last night?"

Waves of guilt washed through Bobby's guts. The tears started spilling out and running down his face. "N. . . no," he gasped, trying to hold his breath against the sobs that threatened to erupt. "But. . .but. . .Jeannie. . ."

"No buts, Bobby," Jean said firmly, giving him a very hard spank right at the juncture of his thighs and bottom, and then another and another. "There's no excuse for your behavior. You wanted attention. Well, baby, you're getting exactly the attention you deserve."

Bobby's attempts to hold his breath were doing no good at all. He started sobbing, frantically, tears streaming down his face.

"So, sweetie, you found out that Remy loves you enough to hurt himself and risk getting his bottom paddled again for going after you before you could manage to shoot up smack. And I love you enough to spank you soundly. Does that make you feel better?" The hairbrush continued waling against his helpless bottom.

Bobby just felt sicker and so ashamed that he thought his face was probably redder than his bottom. And the heat in his bottom indicated that it was probably very red indeed. He sobbed miserably, wishing he'd never been born.

"J. . .Jeannie. . .please, pl. . .please. . .st. . .stop," Bobby wailed out.

"Stop paddling you or stop scolding you?" Jean asked. She paused for a moment, the brush not smacking his upturned bottom. "You have a choice, Bobby. I'll stop one or the other. Either the spanking or the scolding. Which hurts more? You have exactly ten seconds to reply or I'll go on with both."

Bobby thought frantically while sobbing desperately. His bottom hurt so badly that he was sure he wouldn't be able to sit comfortably for days. But he was even more hearsick at hearing how badly he had upset and hurt the people he loved.

"The spanking," he burst out, quite honestly. Then he shook his head. "N. . .no," he sobbed out. "I de. . . de. . .deserve to be spanked. I. . .know that. . .I just don't wanna be. . .scolded any . . .any more. I know I was bad. I'm s. . .sorry." His stomach sank all the way to his feet and all he could think was, Robert Drake, you're a worthless piece of shit. He released his grip from the end of the table and put his hands over his face, sobbing hard.

The brush descended on his bottom again and Bobby howled with pain. "Good choice," Jean said. "And I heard what you just told yourself, young man. You are not 'a worthless piece of shit,' Bobby Drake. You just made some very bad decisions." The hairbrush smacked down on his bare bottom ten more times. Bobby's legs flailed helplessly as he sobbed desperately and wished he was dead. He wished even more that he had never even thought about competing with Remy in the "deserving of punishment" category.

Jean stopped. "You deserved to be spanked till you were sobbing and screaming, Bobby," she said gently. "And you have been. All over for now, kiddo. At least from me. I don't know what the professor or Logan or Hank or anyone else might have planned for your bottom. I'm through."

Bobby felt the telekinetic bonds release, but he continued to lie over the table, sobbing hard. Jean's last words had scared him out of his wits. He didn't want to think about the spankings he might have coming. He shook with fear and pain, sobbing desperately.

Bobby felt Jean's hands pulling his briefs and pants back up over his stinging up-turned behind, and he flinched with pain as the material brushed over his burning bottom, but didn't move. All he wanted to do was crawl into a hole and die, quietly, with no further fuss. He sobbed forlornly.

He felt Jean's hands at his shoulders. She pulled him over to one of the beds, gathered him into her arms and held him closely. "It's okay for now, Bobby," she murmured. "It's okay, sweetheart. You're not going to be punished again. Not for a while."

"I'm s. . .sorry," he sobbed out, his guts churning as he thought about what might be coming, after a while.

"Yeah, babe," she said gently. "I know how sorry you are. I know you regret what you did. It's okay, sweetie. I still love you."

"But the professor. . .and Hank. . .and Logan. . ." Bobby shuddered with terror.

He felt Jean shake her head above where his head was cradled in her shoulder. "Bobby," she said quietly, "I think you wanted to be spanked. You wanted the attention. You've managed to get it. It was your choice, kiddo."

Bobby trembled as his sobs started to subside. Yeah, he thought, was my choice. And he wished bitterly that he had made another choice.

"How mad are they?" Bobby asked shakily.

"Logan's furious," Jean said simply. "You know that. As for the professor and Hank, well, I don't really know. I've told the professor what was going on, but all I've really gotten back from him is his relief that we retrieved you. Have no idea what Hank might be thinking."

Bobby's stomach hurt as he thought about what his oldest and closest friend might think about what he'd done and hurt even more as he thought about the professor. He deliberately avoided even considering what Logan had in mind.

"Oh, Jeannie, I really fucked up," he gulped out, as tears rose again in his eyes and he started crying again.

"Yeah, kiddo," Jean said compassionately. "I think you did."

* * *

Remy woke from his nap with a start. He looked around frantically and was immensely relieved to find Logan dozing in a chair near his bed. He settled back quietly and picked up one of the magazines that Yoshi had brought him.

Remy finished the entire issue of "Fantasy and Science Fiction" and had started on "Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction" when Logan's eyes snapped open and he sat up in the chair.

"Hey, Logan," Remy said.

"Hey, kiddo," Logan returned. "How are you?"

"Better," Remy said. "I wanna go home."

"You and me both, kid," Logan said. He rose, stretched and came over to the bed to tousle Remy's hair.

Remy grinned up at him. "Love you, too, Logan," he said without thinking and then blushed.

"Don't go red on me, kiddo," Logan grumbled. "You got it right. You need me to say it?" Remy shook his head, with his face still hot.

"So, I'll say it anyway," Logan said. "I love you, kidlet. Nothing changes that."

Remy felt hot tears burning in his eyes and decided to change the subject. "How's Bobby?" he asked.

Logan shrugged. "Last I heard he was fine. You tell me, kiddo."

Remy shut his eyes for a moment and then looked up at Logan with worried concern. "He's cryin'," Remy informed him. "An' he's scared." Remy's eyes widened. "Mon Dieu," he said with shocked surprise. "Jeannie blistered him."

Logan snorted. "Good. I hope he's scared witless. And crying hard." He looked at Remy carefully. "I asked because I wondered. Can you find anyone you know by reaching out telepathically or just the folks you really care about?"

"I don' know," Remy said as he thought about it. He closed his eyes again.

"Whoa," Logan said firmly. "You're still recovering, Rem. You don't need to use your powers."

"Rogue's sleepin.'" Remy reported as he opened his eyes. "An' so's Stormy. I was gonna check on my Dad, but you stopped me."

"We need to call your Dad," Logan said quietly. "And I need to find out from your doctor if I can get you out of here."

Remy held up a hand to stop Logan before he turned and started out the door. "Logan?" he began and then shuddered to a stop.

"What, kiddo?" Logan asked gently.

Remy looked down again. "Never mind," he said.

"You wanna ask me if you're gonna really have to spend a whole day with your pants down, getting spanked," Logan said. Remy nodded, feeling miserable. Logan sighed. "Remy, I want you to think long and hard about what you deserve. It won't be your decision, but I want you to think about it. I can promise you that you are gonna be spanked long and hard and your pants are gonna be down for a long damn time. I haven't decided yet if it'll be for a whole day or not."

Remy's eyes filled with tears, but he nodded acceptance. He knew he deserved to be punished, but he didn't like it. He particularly didn't like thinking about his pants being down and his bottom being bare for a long damn time. His bottom tingled in dread anticipation and his breath caught in a sob.

Logan sighed again as he sat down on the bed and gathered Remy into his arms. "Kiddo," he said, "go ahead and cry it out. It's all gonna be okay. I promise." Remy put his arms around Logan and sobbed.

"What is this young man crying about now?" Dr. McIntyre was suddenly in the room, hands on hips, looking at both of them.

Remy felt his face go hot again and he pulled away from Logan as if he had been snapped by a rubber band. Logan shook his head and pulled him back again.

"He's crying because he's gonna be punished," Logan said roughly. "And because he deserves to be punished. Any other questions, Sandra?"

"No," the doctor said. "But as soon as he finishes sobbing his guts out, I want to examine him and if he's fit to go, release him." She walked over to the bed and put a gentle hand on Remy's burning face. "Hey, Remy, it's okay. And I'd bet my license that you never shoot up smack again in this lifetime."

Remy nodded his head and managed to stop crying though his breath still caught with aftersobs. Logan let go of him and looked up at Sandra.

"Please," he said, "let me take this boy home."

Sandra gave Remy a brief exam and nodded. "I'll do the paperwork now," she said. "But you and I need to talk before I let him go, Logan."

Logan nodded and walked out of the room with Sandra. Remy watched them go, rolled over in the bed, and started crying again.

* * *

Logan looked impatiently at the doctor. "Yes?" he opened the conversation.

"I'm really worried about whether or not this young man can handle the punishment you've decided to give him," Dr. McIntyre said.

Logan simply stared at her for a moment, then said, "Excuse me. Remy's crying again. I can hear him, and I want to be with him. And I'd appreciate it if you come with me and listen to him answer a couple of questions." Logan turned and headed back into the hospital room.

Sandra opened her mouth, closed it, and followed him.

Remy was sobbing into his pillow. Logan sat on the bed and gathered Remy back into his arms, "You cryin' again 'cause of the trouble you're in, kiddo?" Logan asked. Remy nodded. "Cry as long as you need to, Rem, but I need to ask you a couple of questions. Your doc needs to hear the answers."

Remy nodded into Logan's shoulder still crying though not quite as hard as he had been a moment before.

"Remy, your doctor seems to think that I should cancel your punishment for shooting up heroin and almost killing yourself. She seems to think you can't handle it emotionally. You want that? You want to go without the spanking you've been promised?"

Remy felt about two seconds of relief and then found himself sobbing harder than he had been. "NO," he gasped out, reluctantly, but emphatically. He shuddered and tried to make sense of his feelings and then tried to gulp them out, "L. . . Logan, if you don't punish me, den it won' count. An' I'd have t' do it again. . ."

Logan looked up at Dr. McIntyre who looked appropriately horrified.

Remy shuddered and went on, "No, dat don' sound right." He sobbed convulsively, shivered, and then surrendered to the truth. "If you don' spank me for being so bad, den I won' believe you love me. An' if you don' love me, den I wanna be dead." Remy started crying hysterically.

Logan looked at the doctor again, but before she could respond, he was dealing with Remy, "Is not to worry about, kiddo," he said firmly. "You're gonna be spanked. You're gonna be spanked long and hard. I just wanted you to admit to yourself and your doc that you need it bad."

Remy's sobbing started to calm immediately. But he could not believe that he'd been forced to admit that he wanted and needed a spanking. He looked up and shot a murderous glare at Dr. McIntyre. "Dat wasn' fair!" he spat out at her.

Logan almost laughed as Sandra's eyes widened and she took a step back. She, in turn, frowned at Logan, putting her hands on her hips.

"Remy," Logan said gently, shaking the boy slightly. "Don't blame the doctor. It was my decision to make you admit it. Not her fault. Mine. If you wanna be mad at someone, be mad at me."

Remy put his face back into Logan's shoulder and shook his head. "I don't wanna be mad at you," he confessed. His sobs quieted and died away. "It's not really dat safe t' be mad at you, anyway. Even if I wan'ed t' be." The last was said almost in a murmur but both listeners heard and couldn't help grinning.

"Rem," Logan said. "It's safe as houses to be mad at me as long as you don't blow anything up or hurt yourself or me or anyone else."

"Den it's not safe t' be mad at you." Remy looked up from Logan's shoulder with a faint grin on his face. "Cause, I don't seem t' know how t' be mad at you wit'out doin' some of dose t'ings."

"I've noticed," Logan said wryly. He looked over at Sandra. "You satisfied, doc?" he asked.

Dr. McIntyre nodded her head and then shook it. "I'm satisfied that you know how to handle this overgrown brat," she said reluctantly. "He wants to be treated like a child and you're a parent to him. I'm just not sure that's what's good for him in the long run. What if you had really been killed the other night? He might have killed himself. Don't you think that maybe you're letting him be a little too dependent on you to take care of him?"

Logan sighed and Remy looked stricken. "I got ot'er parents back home," he said hurriedly. "If I'd lived, dey would've punish'd me. An' it wasn' jus' Logan dat I t'ought had died."

"I don't think that's quite the point that your doctor was making, Remy," Logan said quietly. Remy started to protest again and Logan simply put a firm hand over the young Cajun's mouth. "Hush," he ordered.

Logan turned to Sandra. "You have a point," he said. "And it's one that's been worrying me. We started dealing with Remy's self destructiveness by punishing him and hoping that the punishment would mitigate some of the endless guilt and self-hatred. I sometimes think that now we've gotten to a point at which he acts up because he wants to be punished. Like we might have created a counter-productive negative feedback loop."

"Dat's not what's. . . " Remy started hotly.

"Hush, Remy. I don't want to hear a word outta you," Logan said firmly. Remy subsided, flinging himself out of Logan's arms and crossing his arms over his chest. "Yeah, Rem. I'm aware as all hell that you know how to sulk. You might even look more convincing if you stuck your lower lip out just a little more into a full-fledged pout instead of that half-hearted one."

Remy's eyes widened and he caught his lower lip between his teeth to make sure if wasn't protruding. He scowled furiously at Logan who chuckled and cuffed him lightly on the side of his head. "I think if you listen, you might learn something," Logan said mildly.

"That's what concerns me most," Sandra said. "The negative feedback loop. Remy gets to feeling lost or lonely or depressed and all he has to do is misbehave and then, bang, he gets spanked and held and comforted and loved and he can feel all better. Til the next time that he starts feeling lost and depressed. And the biggest problem is that his most frequent misbehaviors are self-destructive as hell."

Remy was staring down at his bed and plucking at the covers aimlessly. Logan sighed again. "Would it help any, doc, if I told you that I've been thinking about this very problem?"

"Helps a great deal," Sandra said. "So what is being done to solve it?"

"Haven't decided yet," Logan said honestly. "But I don't think it hurts to have it brought to Remy's attention."

Sandra smiled. "Good point," she said.

"I'll promise it'll be discussed with all the responsible adults back home and with Remy until we do find a solution," Logan offered. "And if you like, I'll call and consult with you. You sure you're not a psych resident?"

"On my third residency, right now," Sandra said quietly. "Psych, then neuro, and now acute care."

"Ahh," Logan looked at her with respect, "that's quite a load."

"Has been," Sandra agreed. "And I would appreciate you calling me."

"Hell, we might come back here and consult with you," Logan said. Sandra seemed about to say something when Remy spoke up.

"Is dis de way t'erapists talk t' you?" Remy asked, still picking at his blanket and not looking up.

Sandra nodded cautiously. "I've been a bit confrontive," she said, "but the situation seemed to merit it. Why?"

"I kinda like it," Remy said, looking up hesitantly. "I t'ink I could talk t' you if you were my therapist."

Sandra looked thoughtful. "Actually," she said. "I'm finishing here soon and transferring to Columbia Presbyterian to do a fellowship in psychiatry."

"Columbia Presbyterian in New York?" Logan asked incredulously.

"Is there another one?" Sandra asked. "I'm sorry. Yes, in New York, close to where I think you guys live."

"My analyst teaches there," Logan said.

Sandra looked at him, her eyes wide. "Your analyst???"

Logan chuckled. "Yes, Sandra, even wild mutant berserkers can have analysts," he said mildly.

Sandra nodded, flushing slightly. "Can I ask?" she started. Then hesitated.

"Yeah, you can ask anything," Logan replied.

"I guessed you were mutants," Sandra began. "I wondered. . ."

"Yeah, you probably would've heard of us," Logan responded as the young doctor hesitated. "I'm usually known as. . ."

"Wolverine?" Sandra interrupted. Logan nodded. "And the doctor I spoke with is Henry McCoy who's also the Beast?"

"Been putting it together, doc?" Logan asked easily.

Sandra nodded. "Mutants are an interest of mine," she admitted. "And this brat with the Cajun accent? Does he go by Gambit?"

"Hey," Remy protested. "I'm not famous. Not like Logan or Hank."

"No, kiddo. But we're all notorious," Logan chuckled. "Congratulations, Doc. You are a well-informed and intuitive woman."

The doctor flushed slightly. "I've a great deal of respect for Dr. McCoy's work," she said. "And I've read a lot about the X-men. If you want to contact me when I get to Columbia, I'd be honored to help."

"Would you take me as a patient?" Remy asked very softly, looking back down at the covers again. Logan stared at him with surprised pleasure and pride in his kid.

"If it works out, Remy," she said, "I'd be delighted."

Remy looked up with a shy smile. "T'anks," he said. "At least you already know all de most embarrassin' stuff."

"I guess I do," Sandra admitted, chuckling. "Okay, guys, I've got work to do including this guy's discharge. Hang tight. I'll get on it as quick as I can. You should be out of here within an hour." She gave a wave and was out the door.

Logan reached out and tousled Remy's hair again. "Good plan, kiddo," he said approvingly.

"Yeah, yeah," Remy grinned and ducked away from Logan's hand on his head. "Do you t'ink dey'd let me take a shower? I feel grungy."

"I'll find out, kidlet." Logan rose and headed out. He stopped before opening the door. "You may be brat, kiddo, but you're still my brat, and I'm not giving up on you. Nor do I have any damn intention of stopping your spankings till we find some other way to get you to behave."

Remy nodded and said not a word until Logan was out of the room. Then he looked at the wall. "Hasn't stopped me from misbehaving, yet," he grudgingly admitted to the wall.

Yeah, kiddo, Logan's voice sounded in his mind. I kinda noticed that, myself.

Remy went bright red. Don't I get any privacy in my own damn mind? he demanded.

Soon as you learn to stop broadcasting through our link, it'd be fine with me, Logan returned cheerfully.

Remy rolled over on his bed, groaned, picked his magazine back up, and propped himself back up on the raised upper part of the bed. He was determined to concentrate on reading.

* * *

Bobby and Jean had managed to get their luggage back to the blackbird. Bobby had been fine as long as he had work to do, but as soon as all the gear was stowed away on the jet, he didn't know what to do with himself. He paced around the blackbird, looking into compartments and re-arranging the luggage.

Jean settled herself into a seat, accessed the computer, and checked her e-mail. There was a message from Scott, asking about her and sending his love. She answered it quickly, still feeling slightly guilty about the earlier communication between her and Logan. She wondered, not for the first time, how it was possible for her to be so deeply love with her husband and still feel so hopelessly attracted to Wolverine with such deep caring for the Canadian mutant.

Jean was so caught up in her own dilemma that she hardly noticed Bobby's desperate pacing until he suddenly kicked the bulkhead in front of him, winced as he bruised his toes through his Nikes, and sat down staring at the deck with tears welling in his eyes.

"How long they gonna be?" he demanded angrily, swiping his sleeve across his eyes.

"Why, Bobby?" Jean asked with little mercy. "You want Logan to get here, put you over his knees, and spank you till you're sobbing? You want to get home and get maybe five or ten more spankings till your bottom is so red and blistered that you'll pray for the day you can sit down comfortably again?"

Bobby's mouth fell open with dismay and surprise, and he looked at Jean in utter shock for several moments. Then he put his face in his hands and started sobbing.

Jean put her hand to her head and silently counted to ten. Way to go, girl, she thought. This kid is frantic with fear and you just made him feel worse. All because you feel guilty that you're almost as much in love with another man as you are with your husband. And he belongs to one of your best friends.

Another voice kicked in, He doesn't <belong> to anyone. And I don't <belong> to anyone either. He and I are both grown-ups.

Jean willed both voices to shut up and turned her attention to Bobby who had leaned over in his seat, still sobbing hard. She took a deep breath and walked over to him. Sitting down beside Bobby, She raised the armrest and tried to gather him into a hug. He resisted.

"I don't deserve to be hugged," he gulped out.

"Bobby," Jean said gently, "don't be silly. Of course, you deserve to be hugged."

Bobby resisted for another moment, then allowed Jean to pull him into a firm embrace. "I know you still love me, Jeannie," he gulped out. "But, Logan hates me now, and Hank'll never forgive me, and the professor. . ." Bobby dissolved into despairing, gulping sobs.

Jean shook her head. "Bobby, you're slap silly out of your mind. Logan's angry, but he doesn't hate you. . ."

"NO?" Bobby objected. "I hurt his fuckin' 'precious baby.' I hurt 'de' blasted Cajun who's the only person Logan cares about any more. Logan hates me. And Hank'll never trust me again. And the professor. . . oh, Jeannie, I hurt his son. I don't matter to anyone. I'm just a hopeless fuck-up."

Jean stared down incredulously at the young man who was sobbing in her arms. She had not one clue what to say. She was grateful as hell that she'd heard the hatch open as Bobby was gasping out his anguished despair.

Logan jerked Bobby out of Jean's arms, raised him to his feet, sat down in a seat on the other side of Bobby's, and pulled the young man into a firm embrace. "Bobby, you're an idiot," he said roughly. Bobby fought hard, but Logan held him tightly. "No, kiddo. You're not squirming away from me. I've got you and I'm holding on."

"NO!" Bobby fought helplessly, trying to get away. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Remy looking at him with a stricken face and he felt new waves of guilt wash through him. He swung his arm out and almost succeeded in punching Logan in the face. Logan caught his fist and held it firmly.

Bobby took a deep breath and started to think about using his powers. Logan growled, with a rumble that started deep in his chest and Bobby thought again. He swung his other fist towards Logan's face.

Logan caught his arm again and put both wrists in one of his hands at the small of Bobby's back. He used his other hand to catch Bobby's chin and lift his face so that their eyes met. "Bobby," Logan said firmly, "I had no intention of spanking you. Not right now anyway. But you're pushing me hard. If you don't calm down, you're going to end up over my knees, right this minute."

Tears welled as Bobby stared into Logan's calm, concerned eyes. "Then whadda ya want?" he demanded.

Logan continued to hold Bobby's hands imprisoned at his back and held his chin in a grip of iron. "All I want is for you to let me hold you in my arms and talk to you, kiddo. That's all."

"Why do you want to hold me?" Bobby insisted. "I don't wanna be held."

"Fine." Logan acquiesced, letting go of the young man immediately. Bobby fell free of Logan's iron grip and collapsed on the seat beside him.

Wolverine sat back, arms crossed over his chest, his eyes gazing upward, his face calm and composed. Bobby stared up at him wondering what was going on in Logan's mind. Logan left him clueless for only a few seconds, but in those few seconds, Bobby's stomach lurched.

"You know, Bobby, you're right that I love Remy beyond what is sane or sensible. And I wish to hell I could make the brat believe it." Logan glared at Remy. Bobby looked up at Remy who had tears welling in his eyes. Two slipped out and ran down the Cajun's face.

Bobby felt iron bands closing around his chest. He could hardly swallow past the lump in his throat. He looked up at Remy "I'm sorry, Rem," he choked out. "I didn't want you to hear what I was saying to Jean. I didn't mean it."

"Is okay, Bobby," Remy said, uncomfortably, not meeting his friend's eyes, as tears continued sliding down his face. It was obvious to Bobby that it was not at all okay. He shifted uncertainly in his seat. He couldn't remember ever feeling quite so miserable and ashamed. He looked up again and tried to meet Jean's gaze. She wouldn't look at him. Bobby glanced up at Logan.

Logan went on, "But, the fact of the matter, Bobby, is that I happen to love all of you, all the goddam X-men. You're the only family I can ever remember having." Logan's voice was suddenly bleak. Bobby felt Logan shake himself slightly before he went on. "If it matters to you a damn, I wanted to hold you to offer you some caring and compassion. But, obviously, you don't trust me." Logan sighed again with a short, sharp intake of breath. "Sorry, kid. Didn't know you were so scared of me."

Bobby looked up at Logan again and was dismayed to find that Logan looked deeply unhappy.

Bobby felt his breath catch on a sob, and he held it firmly, willing himself not to start crying. The iron bands tightened across his chest and his heart hurt. He crossed his arms over his chest and looked down fiercely. A sob escaped.

Bobby couldn't remember ever feeling quite so trapped in his whole young life. He was damned no matter what he did. The iron bands across his chest started closing in even tighter. He gasped, gasped again and looked up frantically for help from either Remy or Jean. Neither would look at him.

Bobby could barely breathe past the lump in his throat and the iron bands at his chest got so tight that he thought they would choke him. He took a deep, shuddering breath and looked pleadingly at Logan, "I'm s. . .sorry," he gulped out, starting to sob convulsively. "I was wrong. I. . .w. . . want you to. . . to h. . .hold me." Logan leaned forward immediately and caught Bobby in his arms. He drew Bobby into a hard embrace and held him tightly.

"I'm s. . .sorry, I'm sorry," Bobby repeated over and over. Logan held him close as Bobby sobbed out his sorrow and remorse into the older man's shoulder.

"It's okay, Bobby," Logan said gently. "Listen to me, brat. And I mean, listen good. You listening?" Bobby nodded as he sobbed out his heartsick shame. "I don't have a clue what you thought you were doing when you decided to run off and shoot up smack. I don't know why you decided that you needed to compete with Remy in misbehaving. But if you thought that you weren't loved, you're an idiot."

Bobby continued to sob out how sorry he was. Little of what Logan was saying to him was getting through. All he could think about was what a brainless choice he'd made and how mad his family was at him. He sobbed frantically.

Logan sighed as he held Bobby in his arms and tried to calm him down. "Bobby," Logan said emphatically. "Listen to me!"

Bobby shuddered, still sobbing hard, but he tried to listen.

"Bobby, you're a part of a family that means the world to me," Logan said honestly and somewhat reluctantly as if it was hard for him to be saying what so obviously he felt from his heart. "I know you never meant to hurt Remy. And Remy knows that, too. You're not fucking gonna be punished for getting in a scuffle with Rem. Yeah, you blacked his eye and he bloodied your nose. You boys are even. Big fucking deal. Who fucking cares?"

Some of the tension in Bobby's stomach eased. He clung to Logan gratefully.

Logan went on, his voice calm and even. "Both of you kids misbehaved. Both of you are gonna be spanked till your bottoms are blazing with pain. You both earned it. But not on this trip home. Remy's still too shaky and sick to be get his bottom spanked and since you earned your punishments so similarly, as far as I'm concerned you deserve your spankings together. And, to be fucking honest with both of you damn brats, I'm sick and damned hard of being the boogey man who scares you. Hell, I'm one of the most irresponsible, disobedient fuck-ups in this world." Logan's voice went ragged for a moment. He took a deep, shuddering breath. Bobby was amazed to realize that Logan was trembling.

"You are not and never have been irresponsible," Jean said angrily. Bobby felt Logan relax slightly.

Bobby looked up at Remy whose face looked as white and scared as Bobby felt. Bobby immediately felt slightly better to know he wasn't alone in feeling terrified.

Logan continued speaking as if to himself. "Thanks, Jeannie," he mumbled. "But none of you can even begin guess how sick and damned tired I am of myself and my role in this never-ending drama. . .oh, to hell with it." His voice got stronger and he gripped Bobby tighter and his word were clearly directed to Bobby and Remy. "Bobby, I know you feel scared and guilty. You did fuck up. Remy, you fucked up, too. Both of you boys are gonna be punished, by me, by the professor,.and by Hank, and, I don't know who else. But not on this trip home. I want both you guys to consider this a free zone. All punishments are 'on hold' till we get home."

Bobby took a deep breath and managed to stop crying. He felt partly relieved and partly dismayed. He wanted his punishment to be over, but realized that it couldn't be until he got home and faced the professor and Hank.

"Thank you, Logan," Bobby murmured quietly. He hugged back closely and said, hesitantly, "I love you, too."

Logan returned the hug. "Glad you got that, kiddo," he said softly. He let go of Bobby who sat up and looked at Remy.

"Does Logan scare the hell out of you as much as me?" Bobby asked the Cajun.

"Maybe more," Remy said honestly. "I t'ink I'd die if he gave up on me."

Logan snorted. "I'll give up on you when hell freezes over," he said bluntly.

Bobby shuddered and looked down. "I'm more scared that the professor'll give up on me," he admitted.

"Which'll also happen when hell freezes over," Logan said firmly. "We need to get home. Now. Bobby, you pilot. Remy, you navigate. I have other fish to fry."

Bobby rose to his feet and hustled to the pilot's chair. Remy followed him, laying in the course. Bobby glanced at Remy's flight plan and took off.

* * *

"Jean," Logan said, "Do me a favor and look in the storage area about two steps beyond your head. Yeah, right there. Thanks, darlin.' Pull out those tapes and read me what they say on the sides."

Jean pulled out a cassette tape holder, unzipped it, and started reading out titles written in script that she recognized as Logan's. "Umm," she said, "early to mid-sixties with some Buddy Holly and Billie Holiday."

"Nope," Logan said.

"How bout mid-sixties to early seventies?" Jean asked.

"Nope," Logan said again.

"Stone, excerpts from Jaws, Paul Winter Consort, Leonard Cohen, Zappa, Bette Midler and Bach??" Jean asked incredulously.

Logan snorted. "I think that might be the first tape I ever made," he commented. "Right about 1975."

"Leonard Cohen?" Jean asked again.

Logan looked at her and started to quote softly, "'You say that all the men you knew were dealers who said they were through with dealing every time you gave them shelter. I've seen that kind of man. It's hard to hold the hand of any man who's reaching for the sky just to surrender. . .And he wants to trade the game he plays for shelter. He says he'll trade the game he plays for shelter.'" Logan paused and went on. "'You'd hate to see another tired man lay down his hand like he was giving up the holy game of poker. But he wants to trade the game he plays for shelter.' Shit, Jeannie, never mind."

"Pretty powerful lyrics," Jean said. "I think I've known some men like that." She looked at Logan intensely.

"Me, too." Logan grinned at her, the first heartfelt grin he'd given since he got on the blackbird.

Jean blinked. "Which Bach?"

Logan shrugged. "Brandenburg Concerto # 2. Keep looking."

"Umm," Jean said, looking at tapes. She giggled. "Uh, Baez, Dylan, Linda Ronstadt and depressing unrequited love songs?"

Logan chuckled. "Was feeling sorry for myself one day. And somewhat pissed off, " he said. "No, not that one."

"'Tape for Kitty,' 'Tape for Jubilee,'" Jean said.

"Just keep goin,' darlin.' I've made a lot of tapes for the folks I love," Logan said.

"Never made a tape for me," Remy grumbled very quietly.

Logan looked up toward the front of the blackbird. "Now, that might be considered whining, kiddo," he said firmly. Remy flinched.

"Wait till Christmas or your birthday, child," Logan relented and said kindly, "Making tapes is a lot of work. I only do it for special occasions."

Jean kept looking at the tapes. "Tape for Jean?" she said uncertainly. "Logan, you never gave me this tape."

"Thought better of it," Logan said, "before I gave to you. But go ahead and put it in and play it."

Jean put the tape in the cassette player. The throbbing beat of "Hungry Eyes" filled the cabin. Jean's hips started to move to the music. Logan came to her side and took her in his arms to dance.

Jean heard only moments of the song here and there. " Now, I've got you in my sights. . . One look at you and I can't disguise. I got hungry eyes." She relaxed into Logan's arms and moved against him and with him as she heard distantly. "I feel the magic between you and I. .. I want to hold you so hear me out. I wanna show you what's love's all about."

Logan swept her away from him, then toward him, dipping her down and low. She was in an altered state of consciousness. She heard, "One look at you and I can't disguise,. . . " Logan swept her away and drew her back "I need you to see this love was meant to be. . ."

He twirled her and drew her close again. She fell against him, her hips moving helplessly to the music.

The song ended and another began. She took a deep breath as Logan swung her again into another dance, "I've Had the Time of My Life."

"Both of these are from 'Dirty Dancing,'" Logan said softly as he twirled her until her mind was dizzy. "You wanna dance dirty, my dear?"

Jean nodded and moved with him. She had stopped thinking, almost stopped breathing. All she was aware of was this powerful man with his arms around her, guiding her steps as she danced with him, listening sometimes to the lyrics. "So, we take each others' hands because we seem to understand the urgency. . .You're one the one thing I can't get enough of. . . So, I'll tell you something. . . This could be love. . . Because I've had the time of my life and I never felt this way before. Yes, I swear it's the truth. . . With my body and soul, I want you more than you'll ever know. . ."

Logan swung her, swept her into his arms and held her close, their hips moving against each other. Jean heard the lyrics somewhere far behind her head. She felt almost drunk. From some far corner of her head, she continued to hear the lyrics, "I've had the time of my life and I've never felt this way before. . Yes, I swear it's the truth. And I owe it all to you."

The song ended and for a moment, Jean thought about pulling away. Then, she thought again. What harm is there in dancing? she decided, relaxing into Logan's strong arms.

"Jeannie," Logan said quietly. "What's next is our song. You remember when we danced to it last? I do."

"Moondance" by Van Morrison started playing. Jean blushed as she remembered the last time that she and Logan had danced to that particular song.

Logan held her tightly and Jean followed his dance steps. She was somewhere beyond thinking and trapped in delicious sensation.

The song played as Logan swung Jean away from him and swung her back again. She stared wordlessly up at him when the words started that were the essence of the song, "Well, I wanna make love to you tonight. I can't wait for the morning to come. And I know that the time, it is just right and straight into my arms you will run. When you come, my heart will be waiting just to make sure that you're never alone. There and then, all my dreams will come true, dear. There and then, I will make you my own. And every time, I touch you, you just tremble inside. And. I know how.. .much... you want me back. You can't hide. Can I just have one more sweet dance with you? My love. Can I just make some more romance with you? My love," Logan looked straight into Jean's eyes as he held her close and they moved to the hypnotic beat. Jean thought her knees would simply collapse.

Remy stared at Bobby who shrugged. "This has a long history behind it, kemo sabe," Bobby said very quietly. "I'll tell you more about it later." Bobby grinned. "Bet you never knew Logan could dance."

Remy glared at him. "I've seen Logan dance a tango like you wouldn't believe in Madripoor with Tyger-Tyger. I know he can dance. Hell, as far as I can tell he can dazzle any woman on this fucking planet. But Jeannie???"

Bobby shrugged. "I 't'ink,' you silly Cajun, that Jean and Logan have been in love with each other since the first day they met," he said. "But Scottie was already in Jean's life and she's a loyal type."

Remy blinked and looked back at the two members of his family who were dancing. He shook his head. "I didn' know," he said. He looked at Bobby. "I'm really scared," he admitted.

Bobby shrugged, looked down, and looked up again. "Me, too, pal," he confessed. He reached out and punched Remy in the arm. "Hey," he said lightly. "How bad can it be? It's just gonna be some hard smacks on our butts."

Remy stared at him. "You t'ink maybe it's gonna be fun t' have t' spend a whole day wit your pants down getting spanked over an' over an' having to wait between spankings wit' your butt bare in de corner?"

Bobby went white. "Is that what we got coming?"

"Dat's what's been promised t' me," Remy told him.

Bobby gulped. "I think I wanna die," he said.

Jean had overheard their conversation. She grimaced with sympathy but most of her attention was on Logan as they continued to dance. The next song was "When a Man Loves a Woman" and they were tightly locked together dancing closely.

Logan's thigh pressed urgently against her groin and Jean felt tingles from her crotch to her brain. She wasn't sure she could continue without tearing her clothes off and falling at Logan's feet. She thought about pulling away as the song ended, but before she could act, Logan pushed her gently away.

"Next few songs aren't easy to dance to," he said quietly. "We should sit." He guided her over to a seat and sat down next to her. Bob Dylan's "I Want You" came out of the speakers.

Jean looked at Logan and put her hand to his face. "Thank you, sweetheart," she said quietly. "Why didn't you give me this tape? I love it."

"Oh, Jeannie," Logan said just as quietly. "When would you listen to it? And how would you explain it to Scotty?"

"I'd listen to it whenever I felt like it," Jean said irately. Then she thought carefully and shook her head. "You're right as always, blast you. It'd drive Scott crazy." She put her head on Logan's shoulder. He carefully stroked her cheek.

I'll always love you, Logan, Jean sent to Logan's mind.

And I'll always love you, darlin.' Logan sent back. And we need to calm down right now and back off. I'm as ready to tear your clothes off and make love to you as you're ready to do the same with me. And you're married to Scotty.

And you're in love with Ro, Jeannie returned with bitter jealousy in her mind's voice.

Logan briefly considered swatting Jean's bottom, thought better of it with Bobby and Remy as an audience, and refrained.

You decided to marry Scott, long before Ro and I got involved, he sent back sternly. And if I ever hear you complain about it again, I'll find some way, some how to get you off by yourself, take your panties down and spank your bottom. Which is something Scotty should've done long ago.

Jean shivered and felt the blood pounding between her legs. Promise? she asked teasingly. I'd never cheat on my husband, but if you ever spanked me, I'll tell you Scott'd have a wildcat in bed with him that night.

Logan chuckled. And Ro would have a seriously intense sexual experience, too. Darlin,' you know damn well I've loved you since the day we met. We just weren't meant to be together this lifetime. I think we need to change this tape and get back to normal.

Jean nodded reluctantly. Logan rose and took the cassette tape out of the player. He looked at the remaining tapes and put in Tangerine Dream's "Melrose."

"How long before we get home, guys?" he asked Bobby and Remy.

"Bout an hour," Remy replied.

"Good," Logan said. He went over to Remy and looked down at him intently. "How you feeling, kiddo?"

Remy shrugged. "Don' know what de fuss is," he said. "I feel fine now."

"Good," Logan said briefly. "I think as soon as we land this ship, you and Bobby are gonna take turns going over my knees."

Remy shuddered and Bobby gulped.

Logan turned away from both of them and collapsed into a seat far away from Jean. His stomach hurt and he felt wretched. He was sick and tired of punishing these kids, but he knew they needed it and he fully intended to deliver.

* * *

To be continued. . .