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

This Exquisite Dance - REVIEW THIS STORY

Written by CrystalWren
Last updated: 01/02/2007 02:01:11 AM

Chapter 5

In an utter disregard for some of the basic fundamentals of professional thievery, Gambit didn't even check once to see if he was being followed back to the shabby hotel where he was staying. He even took the quickest, straightest route, and speed all the way. Jean-Luc would have cried in shame. He did have enough sense to park his van properly, however, albeit hastily. Remi Thibourdreux had a perfect driving record; it would look very strange if he suddenly picked up something as mundane as a parking ticket. (The perfect record was actually something that wasn't deliberate- at least on Gambits' part. He had told Thoeren to set him up some nondescript personas. The perverse bastard had decided to make them perfect as a way to make the coppers' suspicious the way you are when something is too good to be real. The morale of this story: never employ somebody who hates your guts. Not matter how much you pay them they're still going to find a way to make you suffer.)

He bolted up the stairs, totally ignoring the startled enquires from the desk manager as to wether he needed any help. Once in his room he began to throw all of the few possessions and changes of clothing the he had brought with him into a battered suitcase. He had relied mostly on old-fashioned observation and sneaking to watch the Londes, so he didn't have much high-tec equipment, apart from the systems he had used to tap into the Londe phone system. That was stored at the empty house a few doors from their home. He would retrieve it come nightfall. He made a mental note to see his lawyer about purchasing the house outright, so the neighbours would not call the police if they did see him lurking around one time. He could even set it up as a Guild safehouse, and that would perpetuate the fiction that he was renting it out to short term residents. The down side of that was that it wouldn't take very long for whoever was staying there to remark on the uncanny resemblance of Remy's facial features to the Londes in general and to Cat in particular. On the next thought, a guild safehouse wasn't such a good idea. He paused for a second with a perfectly forgettable white shirt in his hand. He hadn't even thought about how his adoptive father Jean-Luc would react to all this. What he'd say. What he'd think. What he'd do. All the nervous, hysterical energy suddenly ran out of Remy in a rush, and as he plopped down on the bed he found himself, for the first time in months, actually thinking, not simply reacting.

Ah, Jesus, what the hell am I doin'? What gives me the right t' terrify these people? The answer came in a rush. Every right. I said they owed me, an' they do. He groaned, and rubbed at his temples and forehead. His head hurt, small wonder. It was as if there were two different sides, two different voices in his head. Side one wanted to pack up and forget that the LaLonde, or as they were known now, 'Londe' family. Go on a holiday to Easter Island or Kakadu. The other side rubbed its hands in fiendish, evil delight and dreamed up ways to make the Londes suffer. If it wasn't bad enough to have two entirely different minds about the matter, truth was that they had even started talking (or more accurately, arguing) at each other. As if they were independent entities in their own right. Remy was just about convinced that if he wasn't crazy, he wasn't far shy of getting there. A usual 'conversation' went like this:

Side one: What makes it right for me to scare these people to death? I've always hated bullies, an' I still do. I'm turning into one now.

Side two: Dese people abandoned me, and I've spent all my life being sold like a piece of meat. Jean-Luc sold me and bought me, even though he said he loved me. Can't trust anybody- an' dese people deserve to suffer.

Side one: They were scared! I've spent my life being called 'De White Devil'. At one stage I even thought I was the son of Satan himself!

Side two: I was their child. They should have loved me, no matter what. Blood is the most important thing in the world, not fucking religion!

Side one: Tell it to the billion or so fanatics on this earth! Muslim, Christian, whatever. And all Dose little groups that are too small and didn't have enough political power t' be called 'religious movements' and got stuck being called 'cults'. Dose people would shed any blood, even those of their children to make sure that their 'cause' is furthered. At least Bernard and Angele didn't try to kill you.

Side two: …sometimes, I wish they had.

Remy snorted in disgust. There were a lot of mental problems that various people had accused him of having at times, but multiple personality disorder was not among the most common. Now it seemed he was developing that as well. One more for de collection! He swept the suitcase and assorted articles waiting to be packed into it off the bed with a careless movement of his arm, and then stretched prone upon it. He didn't bother to remove his boots resulting in a great deal of dust and dirt being deposited upon the coverlet, but he ignored it. The cleaning staff was more than capable of dealing with it.

Remy crossed his booted feet at the ankles and stretched his arms above his head. He yawned at the ceiling. He scratched his nose. He sneezed. He watched the exquisite play of sunlight on dust motes floating in front of the window, and very carefully thought about nothing except how comfortable the bed beneath him was. He was just drifting into what might have been the first decent sleep he had had in months when he was disturbed by a knocking at the door.

"Mr Jackson?" (He'd used an alias when checking into the motel, naturally.)

He considered ignoring the inconvenient knocker until it went away, but it showed no inclination towards doing so. If anything, the noise level increased.

"Mr Jackson!"

He snarled, and leapt off the bed. Almost as an afterthought he reached out and snagged a pair of his sunnies from the bedside table and put them on. He opened the door with a brilliant show of teeth, but he wasn't smiling. The person standing in the hallway gulped, and carefully tried to step backwards without actually appearing to move. It was the desk manager, the one who had asked him wether he was all right when he had bolted up the stairs.

Remy just looked at him.

The desk manager managed a tremulous smile. "Are- are you okay, Mr Jackson?"

"Why do you ask?" he snapped.

"Well, it's just that- well, you came in so fast, and, and I wondered if you were ill or anything," the desk manager finished hurriedly.

"No," said Remy, "I'm fine."

"Because if you were ill," stammered the poor man, "we could call a doctor for you."

"I am," Remy replied through gritted teeth, "in a more than adequate state of health, although I would have been a lot better if you hadn't so- considerately disturbed my sleep just now."

The desk manager gratefully took that as his que to retreat. "Well, sir, I'm glad to see you are well, the motel is glad to see you are well, because you are one of our best customers as you know, and we would be very sorry to lose your patronage, and your, ah, financial contribution, ha ha, anyway if you need anything, anything at all don't hesitate to call me and I'll have it sent straight up and if you'll excuse me sir I need to get back to my desk and you back to your rest thankyou sir I'm glad to see that you are all right-" and with that the desk manager turned and all but ran down the corridor, with Remy looking bemusedly after him. Well, he thought, it appears I don't need to rely on my eyes to intimidate people. I'll have to remember that.

He shut the door and went and lay back on his bed, but there appeared to be no chance of drifting off to sleep now. He sighed, and rubbed his hand through his hair. He needed a haircut- if he was to move through this conservative town quietly he needed to keep his hair short. Explaining the perpetual sunglasses would be hard enough as it was. He turned on his side, and closed his eyes. It was obvious that he was not going to kill the Londes, and he wasn't about to leave them alone either. He was too curious, and too angry for that. And there was something else as well. All his life he had never had a proper family. The Velvet Ministry of the Antiquary had been too full of danger and politics, and the children jostled for place too much to regard themselves as being proper brothers and sisters. Fragan's Mob, the ones he had run with while he was on the streets of New Orleans had admired him for his skill, audacity and daring, but they had been afraid of him and his strange eyes, and jealous of the way he was prized by the adults who actually ran the Mob. They had never been his family. Even when Jean-Luc adopted him, there was always a constant reminder from anybody and everybody that he was not really family, because he was not part of the bloodline. Remy decided that he would not tell anybody, not even Tante Mattie or Jean-Luc about the Londes. They were his. His family, his blood, something that everybody accused him of lacking. He wasn't going to share their existence because that would mean, in a small way, that he had given them away. He would keep the knowledge of his family to himself, and they would be his to do with as he pleased. His family. Not a shared family, or an adopted one. His own, even if he did hate them for abandoning him and planned to make their lives a living hell. Remy smiled, and felt something inside his head relax. Dere, he thought, Dat wasn't so difficult a decision, was it? He yawned and covered his eyes with his forearm. A lazy thought drifted into his mind. It will be an exquisite dance I will lead them through…

Sleep, real sleep, not just a doze, was not long in coming.


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