Til the End
I do not own x-men. I just write these stories because I'm a loser and have nothing else to do.
PLEASE NOTE: I'm not sure if some of the events in this story are even possible, so please forgive me. I am also a hopeless romantic, so forgive me also if this is cheesy. Enjoy.
Logan held his daughter carefully, the small wound at the side of her head worrying him substantially, bleeding more than the cloth he held to it could hold. His daughter was silent though, had never uttered a cry when she fell from the diving board a Ororo's house, her head colliding hard with the pavement. Logan watched in mute horror as she slipped into the water.
She was out of the water before he could reach her, standing before him, looking confused as she held her head. Ororo was at Logan's side as quickly as she could manage, a hand brought to her lips in silent exclaim.
"Daddy, my head," his daughter spoke as Logan knelt quickly beside her, Ororo close behind. Quickly moving his daughter's hand away, the deep gash behind and below her temple frightened him. He knew his daughter was a strong swimmer, even at five she proved she could save herself, but the wound was bleeding badly. He needed to get her to a doctor.
"I will call Hank," Ororo whispered hurriedly, moving quickly inside. Logan quickly took off his shirt, then forming a makeshift bandage, he scooped his small daughter up in his arms and placed the bandage at her head.
"It's ok," he whispered softly, the unwounded side of his daughter's head nestled in his shoulder, one small hand gripping his hair, the other over top of his on the bandage. "It's ok, Emma."
Logan did not turn when he heard someone come from the house, he could smell his son, Rueben, coming to him, sensing his fear.
"Dad?" the boy asked, his voice shaking when he saw his small sister with a bloody bandage to her head, "Dad, what's wrong." Logan told his son, small for his age of ten, yet mature well beyond his years. He was scared though, it showed in his face. In his eyes. His son had his mother's eyes. Logan was almost glad Jean was not there to experience Emma's mishap. She had not been herself lately, and Logan feared that this would make things worse.
Ororo returned shortly, bringing news that Hank was waiting for them back at the X-Mansion, preparing for Emma.
And so Logan sat in the passenger seat of Ororo's vehicle, holding his daughter, reassuring both her and Rueben that things were fine. His shirt was almost dripping from Emma's vital fluids, worrying him so that his stomach knotted and he wanted to vomit. Yet when they arrived at the Mansion, Hank sighed in relief when he looked upon her wound.
"The skull isn't fractured," he explained to Logan, "and their is no concussion. I will have to stitch the wound, but she will be fine. Perhaps she has some of your healing factor." Logan nodded.
He held Emma's small hand as she lay on her side, Hank injecting freezing into her skin by the wound. He spoke soothing words to her, almost feeling the pain every time Hank made a stitch. Emma never spoke a word, only looked at her father, smiling once to show him she was not hurting. He almost did not notice when a familiar person came to his side, a slender hand resting on his shoulder. Jubilee. He did not turn around, only raised his free hand and gripped Jubilee's. She squeezed his hand back. He smelt her concern.
"Jean's coming back," she said softly, and Logan nodded. He had taken a few moments before Hank started to call his wife. Her voice sounded strained and worried when he told her, insisting that she come home from her conference immediately. Logan did not object.
He picked his daughter off the operating table when Hank was finished, she cuddled into him and fell asleep. He nodded to Professor Xavier when the aged man entered the room.
"I insist you stay here for the night, Logan. Just to make sure Emma is alright." Logan nodded again.
"Thanks Chuck." He replied, a smile spreading across his face, growing wider when Xavier returned the gesture. It might be good for Jean to be around friends this night. He worried for her.
* * *
He woke quietly when he heard her come into the room. He had smelt her coming in his dreams. She did not seem to notice he was awake, and a slight frown crowding his features, shrouded by the darkness. She did not notice much lately, withdrawing herself, caught up in her own mind. Even when they made love she did not seem to be all there, remaining awake afterwards into the long hours of the night, getting up several time to go to the washroom. Is she pregnant again? He asked himself, but discarded the thought. Rueben and Emma had brought them so much joy. She would not be upset with another miracle, another bundle of joy. Besides, he would have been able to smell the other presence within her.
He lifted Emma from his arms, placing her gently back on a pillow, her sleep never disturbed. Rueben slept soundly in the next room adjoined to theirs. His movements startled Jean though, a sharp intake of air sounding from her. She sighed heavily when Logan stepped forward, stepping into his arms, begging for his embrace. He held her tightly for several minutes before she spoke.
"I was so scared, Logan," she whispered, 'I am so scared. Why can I not get into her mind. It hurts me so much that I cannot feel my baby." She wept silently, her body trembling against his.
"She's fine," Logan reassured her, "Hank said we just have teh make sure she gets some rest. Can't get her head wet for a week, 'cause of the stitch'n. Other than that she is ok. Rueben's a little scared, but he can handle it." He felt Jean relax against him. "Everything's fine, Jeannie." He knew it hurt Jean that her daughter had been born with a natural shield against a mind link, hurt him more to see her suffer.
She let go of him, smiling slightly, a sight that lifted his spirit some. Her wet eyes still held a sadness though, a sadness that went far beyond Emma's accident. A sadness that shoved him into oblivion.
"I'm going to shower," Jean spoke, bringing him out of a momentary trance. "Could you help me with my stuff? You can just dump it into my drawers." Logan nodded, watching her move into the bathroom, closing the door slightly behind her.
Sighing heavily, he picked up Jean's closest bag to him , moving across the room to her dresser, open the top door. Her clothing was already washed and dry, so he placed her things in their spots and thought nothing about it. Nothing until his fingers brushed something hard, cylindrical, and made a lump form in his throat. Pulling the object out from the confines of her bag, it had been hidden in a secret compartment in her bag, he studied it.
The small medication bottle held many, deep blue, oval pills, yet the bottle itself was sans a medical label. He stayed crouched above her bag for many moments, until he heard Jean finish in the shower, than placed the medicine bottle back in it's pouch and finished emptying her bags.
He did not bring up the subject of the pills, simply climbed into bed, Jean laying beside him in his arms, and slowly survived the night without sleeping.
"Why did not tell Hank of this?" the hard, demanding voice of Minion Jack sounded, her figure now stout with age, gray showing at the temples of her long, brown hair. She was well into her forties now, being almost twenty years since Logan had first met her, discovering her mutant tendencies.
He sat before her now, her office dim, yet modern and sharp. He had left early that morning leaving Jean a message for when she awoke and arranging for Jubilee to help with the kids. He needed answers, and Minion was the only one he felt he could get answers from without Jean knowing. Not yet, I don't want her to know yet.
Minion had obtained a Ph.D. in Medical Science, moving on to be a criminal psychiatrist for normal humans and mutants alike, all the while keeping her own mutant identity hidden. She would know what pill Jean was taking.
"I don't want Jean teh know I'm asking," Logan replied, looking up at the friend he had confided in throughout the past when he had troubles, which he hated to admit was often. Worsening when Jean began to change. "Besides, Hank has a knack for gett'n all guilty when he has teh tell me about family health problems. Drives me nuts." She sighed, holding out the pill he had brought to her to see.
"She's clinically depressed, Logan." Minion said as she handed it back. "It's a prescription of Paxal, used to treat depression patients like Prozac, only Paxal is suppose to prevent weight gain. This is a thirty milligram pill. Most patients go on twenty, unless they cannot be boosted. I trust that Jean was prescribed this by Hank. " Logan looked shocked, Minion could almost see the life drain out of him.
"Depressed?" he muttered, "Why is she depressed? What have I done teh her Min? What is wrong with our lives that should make her depressed?" He stood up, pacing the office. Minion could feel his anxiety, yet she did not move to comfort him. She did not know how. "I don't swear that much around her, I take good care of the kids, Hell, I even know how to clean a house. What am I doing wrong?"
"Likely nothing, Logan," she replied. "It could just be a chemical imbalance in her brain that causes little upsets in her life to be far more devastating than they should seem. The brain works like a battery, it's the command center of the body. If she stresses herself too much, or works too hard, she will wear herself out, causing herself to work on the back portion of her brain while the front tries to recharge itself. Paxal is like the battery charger, Logan, it will put her back on track."
"But what can I do for her, Min?" Logan almost snapped, then voicing his apologies, he raised his hands in a helpless gesture. He turned his back to the doctor and continued pacing. "I'm her God-damned husband, and all I can do right now is sit back and watch the horrify'n show of her wasting away. I love her so much it eats away at my insides and I feel like I'm going teh die. I love her so much it makes me forget who I am, she makes me better man, she gave me two lights in my life and she herself is my Sun. If I lose her because I'm so bloody ignorant to her own needs, I'll die. I'll just fall over and die." He stopped his pacing at a hand on his shoulder.
Turning, he saw the face of Minion, yet it surprised him to see her looking compassionate. For the twenty years he had known her, he had almost never seen anything on her face save for anger and irritation, though the occasional smile did peek through. Now her face was a portrait of sorrow, and lightly she kissed him on his forehead.
"Take her for a holiday, Logan," she spoke quietly. "I'm am only a criminal psychiatrist, not a marriage counselor, but by the failure of my own marriage, I know what a woman sick with depression needs. A loving family, and plenty of relaxation. But most of all she needs you. She needs you to be her morning and evening sun, she needs you to be the moon which lights her path in her darkest hour.
"My own daughter is a miniature version of myself, Logan, so she is very hard to handle, yet your own children are entities of perfection and love, so you must take them with you. She will need all of you to grow strong again, all of you to realize she is loved."
"She knows she is loved," Logan bit in, shocked at the idea that the love of his life doubted his love at all. "She is my morning and evening sun." Minion nodded.
"Of course she is Logan, and I am not saying otherwise. But a person who suffers depression does not know what to think. Her mind is shrouded by the 'fog of sorrow' as some call it. Deep down she knows you love her, she knows her children love her, but she will have to struggle to clear her mind of that fog before anything is clear to her. She is in a deep pit, Logan, and she needs your help to dig her out."
Minion's words echoed in his head as he left her office. He was already making plans of helping her. He couldn't let her get buried.
* * *
Logan held Jean close in his arms as they on a love seat by the beach, the warm water lapping at their feet. Jubilee had taken the kids out for the night, leaving the two to themselves. Absentmindedly, Logan stroked Jean's thick hair which sprawled about her like a mane, damp at the ends from the waves from their earlier romp in the water. He had never made love so yearningly before, and Jean's equal passion had nearly drove him mad.
The large cottage Logan arranged to have for two months in the summer proved to be a successful investment for him. Jean smiled more often, made love to him more eagerly, played happily with their children, and just a week earlier she had learned that she was indeed pregnant again. Yet he could still feel her awake in the long nights, turning restlessly, sometimes crying softly. He would take her in his arms, though she would not say anything. When she finally fell asleep, Logan himself was too tired to think, and so never got around to asking her about it until their vacation was almost over.
Logan had just climbed into bed after tucking Emma in and bidding good night to Rueben and Jubilee. Jean lay beside him, reading a book she had picked up from the store earlier that day. Logan placed a hand on her thigh, caressed it lightly.
"Good book?" he asked quietly as she placed a hand on his head, twirling his hair with her fingers.
"Mmmm," she replied, never looking from the pages. She remained so for fifteen more minutes, then placing her book down, she allowed Logan to rest his head on her breast.
"Jeannie, what's wrong?" he asked simply, not planning to ask the question at all. He could feel her tense under him. He was not sure if she would tell him, was not sure if she would be angry at him for asking. He suddenly wondered if he had ruined her progress of the last two months by asking her that question, but she continued to caress his hair. She was silent many minutes before answering him.
"How long have we been married Logan?" she asked him quietly, and she could feel his surprise when he looked up at her, as if she had forgotten how long they had been married.
"Thirteen years," he replied, uncertain at what she was telling him. Jean twisted and lowered herself so she was completely horizontal on the bed, her face inches from his. She smiled at him, sadly. He thought she might cry.
"A year less than Scott and I were together," Jean replied, and Logan suddenly felt angry. Why did she have to bring that up. Why was she letting that bother her? It had been so long ago.
"Jesus, Jean, what does that have teh do with us?" he tried to sit up, to vent some of his frustrations, but Jean held him down. Her smile wasn't there anymore. Her spirit seemed to dwindle on the edge of a very steep cliff. Logan planned to be there to catch her if she fell.
She stroked the side of his face, the roughness of his unshaven visage not seeming to bother her. "Have you ever thought that our marriage dwindled, Logan, have you ever thought that our 'spark' died? Have you ever regretted marrying me?"
The words hit him like a ton of bricks, breaking every scrap of bone in his body, no matter how strong they were. "Why the hell would I do that?" he spoke gruffly, yet he did not care. HE needed Jean to know that no matter what happened, he would never regret marrying her, never regret giving her children, and he would never, ever, let their spark die. "I would die a thousand deaths before I thought that, and I ain't about teh let that happen." Jean's smile strengthened his soul.
"I don't know what happened to me Logan," She spoke again. "Everything started to collapse on me when our thirteenth anniversary came months back. All I could think of was my marriage to Scott, how it died so quickly. I still loved him, so much, but I lost the light that made the love worth it. I lost the light that made our marriage whole. He lost it too. I began to work so hard to get my mind off of it, stressed myself to the point where I almost broke. I blocked you from it because I couldn't handle you knowing. Yet now you do. I am so afraid I will lose our light Logan. So afraid. I will die a thousand deaths if I lose it. I will die a million if I lose you."
"So will I," Logan's only response was, and surrounding her with his arms, he kissed her lightly, first on her forehead, then her lips. She responded immediately, curling into him, feeling her life force strengthen. Her heart beat strongly as she felt him slips her night clothes off, her breath quickened as she felt his lips on hers, her throat, her breasts, his tongue teasing her. She felt restored when she felt his warm flesh against hers, felt pure desire as she let her mouth and tongue glide over him. She breathed his name as he slipped inside of her, relished the sound of her own name escaping his lips when his rhythm was found, cried out in an explosion of sensation when they released themselves. Slept soundly in his arms for the first night in months. Almost made him cry.
They lay there together, the worst of their battle fought, yet Logan knew there was much more yet to be done. Jean would still need encouragement sometimes, would still have a sadness, but he knew he would be there to help her, knew she knew that. Knew there was no where for her to go but up. Nowhere else he would let her go.
Stroking Jean's hair again, he smiled. Thirteen years. He had never thought he could settle himself down for so long, never thought he would have children. Three kids. But that was before he met Jean. Before she said she loved him. Before she said she would marry him. Every morning he felt like a new man when he looked upon her, every night she made him feel like that man as they released their passion. He knew he could never leave her.
They were to be 'till the end...
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