This is a majorly important chapter plot wise and it is bursting with yummy Rogue and Magneto goodness. I hope you enjoy.
Chapter Ten: Aluminum Blinds
Pyro and Mystique had entered the airport in the normal way: walking through the front door and passing through the security checkpoint. Mystique had posed as a pilot and Pyro as your average passenger. Magneto, on the other hand, had had to sneak in hiding in the back of a Frito-Lay KC Masterpiece Barbeque Potato Chips truck. What was the old saying? It was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for Magneto to pass a metal detector.
Magneto had known the coast was clear when he reached out with his magnetic fields and hadn’t felt any metal moving around outside of the truck, signaling humans with their keys and cell phones. After climbing out the back, Magneto had checked his watch. 5:28AM. Mystique wouldn’t begin pre-flight checks on the Bowing 747 till 7:00AM and Pyro wasn’t scheduled to board his plane until 7:12AM. In a small airport like Albany International, Pyro would be allowed on the tarmac to board the plane, putting him in a position to fend off security with his fireballs. By 7:30AM their plane should be off the ground with Mystique, Pyro, and himself safely on board.
Albany International Airport had been chosen because of its close proximity to their Maine base and the wilds of Nova Scotia where they planned to hide the hijacked plane. Magneto had spent months researching airport security measures to be sure that Albany was the smallest, least technologically up-to-date airport that had jets as large as a Bowing 747 scheduled to take off from it. The airport offered a single weekly flight to Toronto on their only jet aircraft, a lone Bowing 747, housed in the very hanger bag Magneto currently stood in.
After take off, Mystique would fly the 747 to a hidden air strip that had been specially prepared for it in Nova Scotia about 100 miles from their island fortress off the coast from Bar Harbor, Maine. Thanks to the war in Iraq, the Stratton Air National Guard Base only 9 miles down the road from Albany International was running on a skeleton crew and had no pilots or planes available to send after them. If the authorities did manage to scramble jets to intercept them during flight, Magneto had the 4 Russian MIGs and their pilots waiting on standby to offer air support.
Magneto reviewed the facts of the mission in his head, ditching the Frito-Lay truck to find a hiding space among the crates in the back of the hangar. He would have to lay in wait until Mystique boarded the plane with her flight crew. It was his job to keep the hanger bay clear of airport personnel who could interrupt their carefully laid plans. Magneto also had to prevent the departure of any private aircraft that might block the runway when the 747 tried to make its getaway.
Magneto expended an inordinate amount of energy till he broke out in a sweat, moving the metal crates around with his mutation to offer himself a comfortable and strategically advantaged hiding place where he could watch the entire hanger. He took a seat and waited for the show to begin.
5:00AM was an hour that shouldn’t exist as far as Rogue was concerned. It was ludicrously early. Rogue’s head hurt remembering watching the dawn from the back of Logan’s motorcycle as he drove her to Albany International Airport. The Wolverine had woken her up at 5 so she could make it to the airport by 6AM for her first scheduled flying lesson. He had put out his cigar and handed her a small wrapped package when she had met him outside the mansion on that chilly February morning. When Rogue had opened the package she had been pleasantly surprised to find a pair of Churchill soft brown calves leather pilot gloves. She slipped them on and the pair was off driving on Highway 87 at 85 mph to the airport.
Rogue had felt sick to her stomach during the bike ride, not from the dangerous speeds Logan always drove at, but from the three shots of SoCo it taken to get to sleep the night before. Rogue knew this had to stop; she had to stop. But with each passing day her life seemed less and less like what she wanted it to be. She missed being touched by people. She missed how easy and simple life had been when she was on the Cure. She hadn’t had to worry all the time about having an accident and hurting someone. She hadn’t had to coordinate her ample glove collection by length and occasion with every outfit she wore.
Rogue missed touch even more after having experienced it so recently. She would kill for one just one more kiss, even one more of Bobby’s lying, cheating, and slobbering kisses. The way Bobby had hurt her weighed heavily on her thoughts and when Rogue tried to relax reading fan fiction or working out in the mansion’s gym she was never able to completely rid her heart of the leaden weight of betrayal. Kitty seemed the worse of the two offenders to Rogue. Kitty had listened every time Rogue had unburdened her feelings about how bad she felt that Bobby was not able to touch her. Kitty had known exactly how much Bobby’s continued relationship with her, despite her mutation, meant to her. When Kitty had kissed Bobby, it was like her Mom had abandoned her at that bus stop in Meridian, Mississippi all over again.
Rogue had not been looking forward to her flight lessons. It wasn’t the hellish hour they begin at; it was the entire idea of flying that was soured in her mind. Rogue could see how learning to fly might even be enjoyable. Flying the X-Jet at Alkali Lake had been under pressure and in a moment of crisis, however she felt that without the fear of not knowing how to operate the plane it might actually be fun. But any chance Rogue had of enjoying flying was gone when she overhead the conversation in the Professor’s study a few days earlier. Learning to be the X-Jet’s pilot was a subtle put down of her abilities and contribution to the X-Men team. Beast had even gone so far as to call her a liability. The word made her mouth turn sour. Three days later and she could still hear in Dr. McCoy’s practiced cadence pronounce each syllable. Li-a-bil-li-ty.
So as Rogue stood beside Logan in the office of the flight instructor at Albany International arranging a practice schedule and the necessary FBI background checks, Rogue had trouble pretending to be enthused.
“It’ll just be background information and instruments today. Until we get her cleared with security we can’t let her get any air time.” Flight Instructor extraordinaire Richard Mumfry who looked to be pushing sixty and was a retired Navy pilot told them.
“That’s fine. Are you ready Rogue?” Logan gave her a reassuring squeeze on her shoulder and Rogue couldn’t help but put on a brave face for her friend.
“Ah guess Ah am.”
“It’ll be a two hour lesson. You’re welcome to wait in the terminal, Mr.…?”
“Mr. Logan.” The Wolverine replied to the man and then looked over at Rogue who was nervously twisting the fingers of her gloves. “I’ll be in the terminal. Maybe get myself some breakfast. You want anything?”
“No Ah’ll be fine. Thanks.” Logan had given Rogue a light pat on the back and searched her eyes to see if she really meant it. After a moment he walked away, exiting the hanger bay through a hallway, headed to get a bite to eat. Rogue had starred with unseeing eyes at the Gulfstream 2 that would be her practice plane.
Even with diminished powers, there were some things Magneto would never forget and one of those things was the high-pitched hum of pure adamantium. Adamantium was the strongest metal composition ever created. Once forged it could never be broken or reshaped. It had highly magnetic properties and was easy to manipulate despite its great density. Adamantium was a personal favorite of Magneto’s but it was rare he ever encountered its peerless beauty. And unfortunately he only seemed to encounter it in the form of a wild Canadian mutant named Wolverine.
Feeling the adamantium, Magneto had been stirred from his hiding place and had watched as the Wolverine escorted the mutant known as Rogue into the Private Lessons office. He had waited patiently daring to look out between two crates as the Wolverine left the hanger to return to the terminal. He’d cursed then in German, enjoying the guttural way the profanity had rolled out of his mouth. The last thing he needed were X-Men spoiling his plans to capture the 747.
What were the chances the X-Men would show up to that very airport on that very day, when they had their own jet which rose up out of the basketball court? Magneto had felt safe; he had felt sure of his plan. What was he supposed to do now?
Magneto watched with hawk like eyes, waiting to see the other X-Men appear having been tipped off some how to his scheme (he considered the idea Mystique might have done just that). But no other X-Men appeared and Rogue sat listening as the flight instructor showed her a PowerPoint slideshow.
Not missing his opportunity, he sprang into action, leaving his hiding place behind the crates, pulling the aluminum window blinds down around the private lessons office, essentially blinding his enemy. He strode across the hanger quickly not to lose the element of surprise and threw the door of the office open without using his hands.
The shocked face of Rogue greeted him, but he moved past her to see her flight instructor. Glancing quickly about the room he noticed a Bankers’ lamp with the distinctive brass base and green shade. He used two hands to make sure he could control it steadily. It hit its target without any problem and the flight instructor dropped to the ground with a bump already forming on his head.
Rogue and Magneto:
“What are you doing here Rogue?” He advanced towards her, a white plastic table separating them. Rogue once again felt intimidated by his cold blue eyes and emotionless baritone speaking voice. She pulled her shoulders back instinctively.
“Ah could ask you the same question.” She wouldn’t take her eyes off him, afraid if she looked away his black gloved hands would be at her throat. The way his measured steps brought him nearer and nearer to her reminded her of Hannibal Lecter from Silence of the Lambs. His grey battle suit complete with maroon lined cape only added to her rising fear. She couldn’t help but see flashes back to her time on top the statue of liberty fueling his dreadful machine.
“It would seem we are destine to meet in awkward situations, my dear.” He raised one leather encased hand, palm up. “You first.”
“Ah’m taking flying lessons.” Rogue said standing behind the white table inching away from him toward the window behind. He chuckled softly, almost to himself.
“Do the X-Men underestimate you that much?”
“What do ya mean?”
“They are making you fly the jet, are they not?” Magneto said as though flying the jet was the same thing as playing first base on a baseball team. Rogue didn’t answer his question; it didn’t need one. She made to remove one of her new gloves only to remember her mutation would be no help against Magneto.
“You know what Ah’m doing here. Now what are you up to?” She was backed against the window and could go no further as he rounded the corner of the table coming toward her. She stiffened and stood tall.
“Taking over the world. It’s my day job.” Magneto said. He became disappointed when Rogue was too scared to see his joke. He continued: “I’m stealing a plane.” Why had he told her? Why had he wanted to tell her? Had it been that long since he had done anything exemplary that he felt the need to brag? When Rogue didn’t answer he moved closer to her. She thought he looked more like predatory animal in that moment that Logan ever did. Adrenalin began to flow through her limbs and she felt both numb and jittery at the same time.
“How did you enjoy your last dose of the Cure?” He smiled in a way that was scarier to Rogue than an angry scowl. It never reached his steel grey eyes. “Did you get to fuck your boyfriend again like you wanted?”
Magneto had hit too close to the mark and got Rogue in her sorest spot. Not for the first time in her life, her right hand came up of its own volition and slapped Magneto firmly in the mouth. The smack reverberated loudly in the tiny room. All she could think was… Oh my god I’ve just struck Magneto! He backed away from her and shook his jaw, opening and closing it a few times.
“Hmm.” He tested his jaw again and took another step toward her. “You surprise me, my dear. You do have a backbone in you. From the way Charles manipulated you I got the impression you were nothing more than a pawn to be played with at will.” Rogue’s eyes shot daggers at him but she said nothing in her defense and so Magneto continued.
“You refuse my help because you say you don’t want to be used. Yet, you let the X-Men use you everyday.” He brought his hand up to brush the white lock of hair that was his doing. “Which is it Rogue? Are you as spirited as you’ve shown me or are you as cowardly as Charles told me you were?”
“Professor Xavier said Ah was a coward?” Rogue forgot her fear for a moment as she considered the possibility that everyone at the mansion had seen her only as a liability. Magneto moved his hand from her face and slipped off his glove.
“Only a coward would have let him put a psychic block preventing you from controlling your powers.” Magneto removed Rogue’s gloves from her hands. She made no move to protest.
“A psychic block?” Rogue pursed her lips together. “Ah don’t believe you. Why would he do that?”
“He knew that like Jean Grey you are more powerful than either he or I could ever be. Jean Grey’s abilities had to be kept from her because they made her unstable. But that is not the issue with your abilities.” Magneto grasped Rogue’s left hand in his and Rogue felt the pull began and then stop. Her nerves still stretched out seeking to suck his life force only to find nothing there. The air felt cold against her skin in that spot and she couldn’t help but contain a shiver as the nerves in her hand were open and sensitive.
“Unlike telekinesis or magnetism, your abilities can only be used to hurt people Rogue. Not only are they powerful like Jean Grey’s but they work quicker and are far deadlier. You know that already though.” Magneto’s thumb began to massage circles on her skin where she had so recently used her power. With the nerves on fire and her mutation seeking more life force, the sensation felt like a full body massage in her mind.
“When Xavier was helping you to contain the minds of the people you have touched he put a block on her power. He confined it to your subconscious so you could not actively control it.” Magneto’s right hand came up to lightly graze her neck. It felt like ice against her fevered skin. For a moment the mutation flared and died down again, making Rogue press against the window for support.
“Does that mean Ah can stop it? Ah should be able to turn it off?” Was it really true? Could he speak the truth? She had to get back to the mansion. She would search the Professor’s files. She wouldn’t stop till she knew for sure.
“Not only can you stop it but you can direct it outward. You should be able to slow or speed it up at will; killing instantly or knocking unconscious as you choose.” Magneto was now so close Rogue could feel her breasts press lightly against his chest when she breathed in.
“Tell me. Tell me how Ah can control it. Please.” Rogue’s every hope rested on this man whom she feared more than all others. Her head tilted up to look him in eye; he towered over her. “How can you touch me and not be hurt?”
“Patience Rogue. Why don’t I show you?” His left hand dropped hers and wrapped itself around her lower back while his right dove into her soft straight brown hair and he took her mouth with his own.
His kiss was fierce, possessing. He did not yield, pressing her body to his, holding her head from behind as his tongue dove into her mouth and met her own. She felt her breasts compress against his chest as he held her to him, her head dropped back. He marveled in the feel of her tiny frame against his own and sucked her lower lip between his own before claiming her mouth again with his tongue. Rogue reveled in the feel of touch, the soft, warm press of his lips, the wet slippery silken stroke of his tongue against her own…till she felt the pull of her mutation again. It lasted only a few seconds but Rogue could see clearly in her mind an image from Magneto’s viewpoint looking down at her and one thought attached to it: delicious.
Magneto pushed her against the window and Rogue felt the uncomfortable sensation of aluminum blinds pressing into her back. With her nerves on overdrive from the adrenalin rush of her power, Rogue boldly entered his mouth with her own tongue. She touched her hand to his cheek where the feel of his thin, creviced skin against her fingers was worth more to her than all the money in the world.
Rogue couldn’t remember when she had felt something this good or if she ever had. She tried to remember what Bobby’s kisses had felt like but her mind drew a blank as Magneto bit her lip lightly with his teeth, causing Rogue to moan deep in her throat. Magneto lost himself at that sound and his hands shifted to cup her bottom and press her hips into his own.
Neither noticed the door swing open.
“Rogue I bought you some coffee, thought you might like the Hazelnut-” Logan shifted two Styrofoam cups of coffee in his hand till he looked up to see Rogue and Magneto pressed together and the coffee went tumbling to splash on the concrete floor.
Notes: Flattery gets you everywhere. It will get you chapters faster. But you know that already.
Oh and all the info in this chapter is correct. I actually researched airports in Albany and islands in Maine to give an accurate picture of Magneto’s evil plans. He’s got some more up his sleeve, but he hasn’t told me all of them yet. Please no one act on the information contained in this story. I do not condone terrorism, not even mutant terrorism.
scrambled eggs - I hadn’t really planned on Rogue taking revenge on Bobby and Kitty. But now that you suggest it, it might make an appearance. But it’s several chapters away.
Preview: My first action chapter! The showdown between Airport Security vs. Mystique, Wolverine vs. Magneto, Pyro vs. two fire companies, Magneto vs. Rogue, and Magneto vs. a huge steel hanger door. Maybe even a battle between some U.S. F-14s and Russian MIGs. The next chapter will have a special effects budget rivaling Episode 3 of Star Wars.