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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7

Rogue’s Gambit - REVIEW THIS STORY

Written by Belle Bayard
Last updated: 01/02/2007 02:01:11 AM

Chapter 2

Sleep would not come. The mansion lay quiet, but in Gambit's room a storm brewed. He wanted her and the haunted look out of her eyes so much he felt compelled to put aside his pride and mistrust to ask for help. Again he considered asking the Professor if he thought something could be constructed with whatever he salvaged from Sinister's lab. Except there might not be anything either Xavier or he could do that Rogue would accept.

When Gambit finally sighed in surrender, daylight glared through his window. He rose with a groan and took a cold shower. Maybe Wolverine would take him on in the Danger Room or in a game of basketball after he finished the business at hand. That was if he proved successful in finding what he needed. Despite his weariness, physical exercise might take the edge off the tension building inside him. But first, breakfast and the Professor.

Professor Xavier shook his head. "I doubt we could reproduce the machinery, much less for such a small area. There are such things as the collars they used on New Genosha, though. However, I'm not certain it would be wise to develop another such a device."

"Don' want ta use it ta hurt anyone," he said in desperation. He knew Rogue wouldn't agree to wear such a thing as that collar again. There had to be another way.

"You must have a good reason for such a request, Gambit. Unless you tell me I can't even begin to help you."

Gambit stared blindly at the wall. Somehow he knew the Professor wouldn't help him with this unless he spelled the purpose out. His jaw ached with tension. He couldn't get out of confiding some of it to the Professor.

"What you hear mus' go no further, mon profesor." He held up his hand at the other's protest.

"Gambit trusts ya far as he trusts any man. Still need your word ya won' say anyt'ing, 'cept mebbe ta Beast, 'less I tell 'em first."

"Then I give it. Nothing of your request will be mentioned to anyone except Hank, if necessary." The Professor frowned. "Now, why do you need such a device?"

"Know you've been workin' wit' Rogue ta help her control her powers. But also know dere's been little success wit' it." He felt an unaccustomed heat in his face; suddenly certain Xavier knew how he felt about Rogue. He rushed on.

"Her future looks mighty lonesome if dere's no way she can turn 'em off when she wants ta . . .for a few hours. T'ink I might be able ta scare up at leas' some plans, mebbe some hardware from somewhere dat could be useful."

The Professor looked thoughtful. Then, he nodded his head. "All right. I'll see what I can do if you can bring me either one. No promises except that."

Gambit grinned. "Merci beaucoups, Pr'fessor." He nearly skipped out the door toward his room. If he left right away he could make it to Sinister's old lab and back by tomorrow morning.

He used the skills he learned from his Thieves' Guild days to sneak a mini-jet out of the hanger without the others knowing. While he knew the Professor probably had a good idea of his intentions, he didn't think Xavier would stop him.

The abandoned lab in the swamp still smelt of chemicals and singed electronic gadgetry. Knowing from past experience the sort of safeguards his former employer used, Gambit quickly disarmed both the alarms and the lasers to rummage through the wreckage.

Though the place gave him the creeps, his persistence won out as he ran across a partially burned schematic to the damping field generator and some circuitry tagged with the same numbers under a slagged desk. The ease of it made his skin crawl. What had made the ugly villain abandon something as damning as what a thief could find?

"Not like you ta be so sloppy, you foul t'ing. Musta been in a real hurry ta leave." He grimaced as he stuffed what he needed under his arm and left.

The night air held a hint of dawn, the sounds changing from crickets, frogs and gators to an isolated birdsong here and there. Gambit hurried back to the mini-jet after setting a few well-placed charges to complete the lab's destruction. "No use in leavin' anyt'ing for another ta find."

As he sped away, reassuring blasts sounded behind him. No need to worry now another might stumble onto anything else Sinister had left behind. Remy arrived at the mansion bone weary, yet still on edge. He took his finds to the Professor who accepted them with a faint smile and no questions then passed them over to Beast.

"Doctor McCoy, perhaps these might help in the matter we discussed earlier."

"Certainly." Hank McCoy's eyes gleamed at what he held, then he looked up. "Check back with me later and I'll let you know how I am progressing."

"My t'anks, Beast…Pr'fessor." Gambit nodded to both of them, then headed to his room to change. He knew he ran on nervous energy alone. A bout in the Danger Room might help to work off some steam and take up time while he waited for word.

In spite of his fatigue, a sense of excitement lent a bounce to his step. Wolverine, lounging against the door outside the Danger room gave him a skeptical look.

"What's your problem, Gumbo?" he growled.

"Not'ing now, mon ami. How 'bout you an' Gambit play a little game?"

"Any time."

"Den, let us begin." He nodded to Storm in the control booth. "Level Three, sil vous plait?"

As Gambit had hoped, the workout exhausted him to the point where he could sleep. After a soak in the Jacuzzi, he headed back to his room. Unless trouble came, he intended to make up for the last two nights.

"Gambit, wait," Jubilee yelled.

"What ya need, petite? Gambit's dead on his feet."

"Have you seen Rogue this morning?"

"Unh-uh. Why?"

"She promised we'd go shopping, but I can't find her."

"Did you check her room?"

"Yep. Nada."

"What 'bout de roof?"

"The roof? No. She doesn't usually go up there. I'll try it. See ya." The girl giggled. "Better get some sleep. You look awful."

"Huh! T'anks. Now git." He watched her run off and smiled. Most likely she was right. If he looked like he felt, he could join the zombies.


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