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DISCLAIMER: Iceman and Gambit belong to Marvel Comics, and I'm making a whooping $0 from this story. This version of Bobby and Remy are Kaylee's, from her 'Kinda Mooks' series, which can be found at Mooksville, Earth: http://thundercrack.hispeed.com/mooksville.htm and I very much suggest reading it. :) This particular story is using KJ's characters in an alternate-version Mooks, after "Any Kinda Breath" where Remy lives, because, dangit, I gotta countermand these stories where Remy dies!

A Brief Kinda Interlude
By JB McDragon

    Remy smiled, rounding the corner of the mansion. 
    It was spring.
    In the distance, on the running track, he could see the magnolia tree blooming. Birds were nesting. The very air was filled with life, brimming and hopeful and eager to live. He breathed deeply, drawing that life into himself, through his lungs, past his blood, to his very bones until it settled deeply and chased off the last of the dread he'd lived with for so many months. 
    Remy LeBeau, master thief and battle-worn X-Man, was suddenly more aware of life than he'd ever been in his entire (admittedly short) existence.  He'd almost died more than once. But never had he fought something that he couldn't see--couldn't attack--and it had never frightened him more.
    Remy shivered, suddenly cold, and very purposefully turned his thoughts back to the birds, the blue sky, the brightly shining sun. He was sure there were insects breeding and grass blooming, though he couldn't see them. Life filled the air with countless songs, cries and chirps. 
    He was alive. He'd never been so alive before. Despite that he hadn't gained all his weight back, and his hair was barely two inches long now, he hadn't died from the cancer infesting his lungs. If anything, he noted wryly, it was going to be the post-cancer check-ups with Hank that would kill him. In fact, and he smiled brightly with anticipation, he was late for a lunch date because of one of those.
    He hurried around the corner, a spring in his step, and stopped once more.
    There was a swing-set out in the backyard. He wasn't sure when it had been put up, only that it had started as a joke when Nathan was visiting one day--"All baby Summerses should have swing-sets!"--and it still stood, gaily colored in the warm sun. There were two plastic swings on it, and a slide, and something that was supposed to be a teeter-totter. 
    On one of those swings, lightly swaying back and forth, sat a young man with wavy brown hair. Remy stood in back of him, and couldn't see the rest of the man, but he could easily imagine light blue eyes already feathered with the tiniest, almost unnoticeable, laugh lines, and a nose that had a tendency to turn slightly upward at the very tip. He really liked that nose, though he'd never said so. It would mortify the owner of the nose to know he'd been studied that closely.
    Remy attempted to regain that flowing, causal stride that used to come so easily. It wasn't as fluid as it once had been, but it was no longer jarring, either. Hands in his pockets, he snuck up on the figure that--he now saw--held two ice cream cones, then slid into the swing on the other side of the picnic basket that sat on the ground. "Allo," he said, looking off into the distance.
    "Hello," the other man answered, and continued licking his ice cream.
    "You waitin' f'r someone?" Remy asked, red eyes flickering to the light brown hair.
    "Yup. But he's really late."
    Remy made clucking noises and shook his head. "Shame on him. Leavin' a handsome young t'ing like y'self alone." 
    The other man lifted one shoulder in a shrug. "It's okay. He's worth the occasional mishap."
    Remy smiled, then quickly composed his features back into order. "Is dat ice cream f'r him?" he asked, seeing the ice cream melting down the cone and onto the other's hand.
    The man looked at it, as if seeing it for the first time. "Yeah," he said at last. "He doesn't usually like cold things, but it was so warm today I thought he might change his mind. Just for ice cream, of course."
    "I bet he'd like cold-bodied people," Remy murmured.
    There was an assured nod of the head. "Well, yeah. I have cold feet, and he never complains."
    Remy chuckled. 
    "You can have his ice cream, if you want. But you can't go on a picnic with me. He might get the wrong idea."
    Remy nodded solemnly, then took the ice cream and carefully licked off the cone. His red eyes flickered up, and intent blue eyes flickered away, a blush at being caught staring spreading across pale, freckled cheeks.  "If dat ot'er man don' show up," Remy said at last, "would y' let me go wit' you on y' picnic?"
    "Oh, I don't know," the younger man said casually. "I kinda like my boyfriend."
    Remy's eyebrows rose. "But he stood y' up!"
    Muscular shoulders bounced up and down quickly. "I'm sure he had a good reason. He's very considerate like that. This is unusual, and he did have a doctor's appointment."
    "Ah," Remy said knowingly. "He's sickly."
    Lips twitched upward, and blue eyes still wouldn't meet red ones. "No. I mean, yeah, but he's getting better. I'm really glad he's getting better," said, almost wistfully. "I don't know what I would do without him. I really love him, you know. He's the nicest man I've ever met, and he's funny, and keeps me from getting too . . . serious."
    Remy snorted. "I don' t'ink y' could be serious even if he wasn' dere."
    A smile, so brief. "Well, okay. But I wouldn't mean it, and he really makes me happy."
    Remy let a grin spread, slowly, then smothered it. "Well. Obviously I can' steal y' from 'im. So I guess I'll be goin'."
    There was a nod of the other head, and Remy stood. He walked around behind the other man, then wrapped his arms around those broad shoulders and hugged. "I love y', too," he murmured.
    Bobby hugged him back, then laughed as he got ice cream on Remy's arm.  "Sorry," he chuckled. "I love you."
    Remy kissed Bobby's ear, then stood up. "C'mon," he said, bending to pick up the picnic basket and pretending like he didn't notice Bobby's gaze sharpen, wanting to help. He smiled when Bobby purposefully looked away, concentrating on his ice cream instead of insisting that he should carry the basket. 
    It was heavy, but Remy could manage, and he didn't want Bobby taking such careful care of him anymore. Bobby was trying. That was why Remy loved him so much, he thought.
    At least, part of it.
    "Le's go 'ave a picnic," Remy said, letting a grin slip before heading off into the woods behind the mansion.
    "Maybe we should go inside?" Bobby offered, skipping once to catch up with Remy. "There are lots of mosquitoes."
    "Dey jus' gettin' food f'r dey babies," Remy answered. Birds sang above, the most obvious sign of spring.
    "Hmmm. But they're using my blood, not yours." Bobby sighed, and Remy could tell he didn't really care. "I saw rabbits mating," Bobby chirped, far too innocently.
    Remy cocked an eyebrow upward and stepped over a branch. "Really?"
    "Yeah. Gave me lots of ideas . . ."
    Remy laughed out loud, eyes sparkling. "We'll 'ave to discuss those ideas," he offered, and grinned.
    Bobby smiled impishly and ate his ice cream cone.
    Above, the birds sang and the bugs hummed. The sun smiled benignly down on the world, and squirrels chattered from one tree to another, filling the air with life.


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