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Chapter 1

The Morning After - REVIEW THIS STORY

Written by Fred Garber
Last updated: 01/02/2007 02:01:11 AM

Chapter 1

I walked over the broken glass, surprised that there was this much mess.

"Ah, sir? One of the guards... um, he thought that he saw..."

That explained the glass. It simply wasn't his style.

"Fire the guard. We can't have our security opening fire and causing more damage than the thief."

"Sir, he's been here seven years!" The security chief of this branch office stammered. Obviously overdue for replacement himself.

"Then we won't need to pay retirement. Tessa?"

"Yes?" ~dear?~ The endearment was strictly telepathic.

That's one of the things I love about Tessa. I never know if she'll call me "dear," "Mr. Shaw," "Sebastian," or, once "Herculean Love God With A Twelve Inch Penis." The time she used that one, I was at dinner with the President, and nearly choked. We laughed about it later, though. After she was suitably punished.

"Tessa, make sure this guard receives all his termination benefits, and then meet me for lunch at the plane."

"Very good, sir." ~Parisian?~

~No. I feel like Chinese, today.~

"Well?" I turned to the local head of security, still trembling at meeting the mighty CEO.

"Let's go see what he took."

While Tessa attended to the scanning for and removal of any sensitive information from the former guard's mind, I examined the crime scene.

"Were the cameras running?"

"He caused most of them to display a playback loop, sir."

"The lasers?"

"He left that camera active, and it shows him dancing through them." He showed me, and damned if that Cajun wasn't doing a full tango with an imaginary partner, all the while deftly avoiding the web of detection I had installed.

"Right. Let's see what he took," I stepped out of the room, and stalked across the hall towards the vault.

I wasn't in the anteroom for four seconds before an angry buzz filled the air. The Alarm. Without a pause I turned, and slammed the security chief (who was still following me like a puppy) into the wall. His nose leaked blood, and his eyes rolled up in his head. I turned to his second.

"Congratulations, you're promoted. Now turn off the damn alarm!" Idiots! What did they think, that I could be robbed _twice_? Soon, the silence returned, and I stepped over to the heavy

steel door.

"When he first entered the building, sir, he reset the internal clocks in the computer system, so that the vault door's computer thought it was noon by the time he got here. He just opened it up, and walked in."

Too damn clever. I was going to have to... speak... to my computer systems department. I swung the door open, and looked quickly about the room. And spotted the charged object glowing on the center of the pedestal where I placed my latest acquisitions.


In such an enclosed space, the explosion was deafening. Most of the metallic items were fine, if a bit in need of cleaning, but the bond notes fluttered around my head, and the filing cabinet containing the blueprints was smoking. I looked around. It seemed that the door had been swung open, and clipped my new security chief. He was bleeding on the floor, and I sighed as I realized that unless a medical team got up here soon, I was going to have to promote _another_ security chief.

I, of course, was fine, if a bit disheveled. It's amazing how blase one can become to explosions if kinetic energy only makes you stronger.

And then I noticed what was _really_ taken.

And I laughed.

Ah, LeBeau, you have been defeated.

I knew that all that time with Xavier's little cult had made him go soft in the head. There were only three items of any real worth in the vault. One was the blueprints of the building, which weren't taken, as I could smell them burning in the filing cabinet even now. The second was a necklace, the last piece of jewelry ever designed by Ribisini, in 1843, and that was insured with Llyodds. And it was still in it's case, unless the Cajun had substituted a duplicate. But the third item, the one I couldn't see, and the one whose pedestal had held the explosive card, was a collection of discs holding "all the Legacy research I had collected so far." And they were taken. The discs did contain the data, but they certainly were not the only copy. How foolish and paranoid did Xavier think I was? And that copy had a cunningly designed virus on board. Yes, a virus. I had expected Xavier to make a move for this data later, but the precautions were in place. Sometime soon, the Hellfire Club will receive a data transmission from Xavier's Mansion, containing all of Xavier's data upon Legacy. It's only a fair trade, after all. I laughed, and went to change into a fresh suit before

joining Tessa at the plane.


Author's Notes:

Hah! I expect some of you heard "Gambit" and "Morning After," and were expecting romance, right? Surprise!

Disclaimer: All Characters belong to Marvel Comics unless otherwise noted, I make no money from this. Permissions: Archive, MST, PopUp all OK as long as I get a copy or the url.

Gods, I love my hobby!


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