As we move through the next half-dozen chapters for the 'X-Women in Sunnydale' arc, you should start to notice more and more changes between this and the original version of Blue Belle
. If not, you're probably skimming because you're assuming nothing is different. You can, if you want, but… well, consider this your official warning that it will come back to bite you on the ass. Forewarned is forearmed.
November 20, 2011
Chase Household - Guest Room
There was a weight on her chest. That was… unexpected. Given the depth and breadth of her sexual experience, it wasn't an unfamiliar sensation in the least, but it was decidedly unexpected nonetheless. Yawning, Emma stretched as best she could given the circumstances before craning her neck to peer down at her chest. Or, more precisely, at the head resting on her left breast and the red hair fanned out across her chest in a way that rather conveniently preserved the modesty she didn't actually have.
Would they be in this situation if not for Rachel? If so, would she be looking at it quite the same way? Emma pondered that as she reached up, running her fingers through Jean's wild red mane. Her… and Jean. Supposedly it was inevitable. Rachel's existence pointed to as much. But Scott and Jean had been Scott and Jean since… well, not quite back when Emma first stumbled her way into the greater mutant community a decade and a half ago, but close enough. On top of that, she and Jean tended to get on like oil and water… although to be fair, most of the enmity was manufactured on her end. It was just so much fun to rile Jean up sometimes…
And yet Emma had seen the future, or at least a future, in Rachel's mind. Her and Jean, married. Not only did they have a daughter all their own, but Jean would come to dote on the Five-in-One as if they were hers as well. They would synergize beautifully, their contrasting personalities slotting together into a cohesive whole just as their differing areas of psionic mastery did. Emma's confidence and drive would propel Jean to new heights, helping the redhead establishing herself as a respected authority in the field of post-human genetics and medicine. At the same time, Jean's humanity would keep Emma from sacrificing too much of herself - or others - as the blonde expanded both her business and her power base within the mutant community. Emma would help shield Jean from her own naïveté, while Jean would help keep Emma from becoming too jaded by the world around them. Serving as co-headmistresses of Xavier's after the founder's death, they would come to play off each other as 'good cop' and 'bad cop' to keep the students happy yet respectful and manageable.
Knowing that it would crush Scott's spirit was just a bonus in Emma's mind.
She was fairly certain it'd irritate the hell out of Charles, too.
As she lay there continuing to run her fingers through Jean's hair, Emma decided that it was time to be a bit more proactive. Even if her and Jean were fated to be, it certainly wasn't going to just up and fall into her lap as she sat there waiting patiently. Especially given that Jean was currently seeing someone else and didn't know she was supposed to be leaving him for the blonde. It wouldn't be the first time Emma had broken up a relationship for her own benefit; she had it down to a science by now. And besides, it wasn't as if she had any better romantic prospects at the moment… which was hardly a good reason to date someone, of course, but a perfect valid excuse as to why she shouldn't not date someone.
'Shouldn't not date'. It was official: she needed to start spending more time around adults. 'Mmmph. Emma? Do you know what time it is? Because I really don't feel like getting… up… yet…'
Slowly opening her eyes, Jean's muzzy gaze met Emma's as she stared at the blonde uncomprehendingly. 'Emma? Aren't you supposed to be on your side of the bed?'
Ah yes, the utterly juvenile dictate the redhead had handed down the night before when she'd discovered that the guest room at Cordelia's house had only one bed in it. Because God forbid the bodies of two mature, adult women touch in the middle of the night. Emma rolled her eyes before using her free hand to lift the corner of the top sheet near her, showing off how little fabric remained to her right. 'I am, darling. As a matter of fact, I'm almost falling out of my side of the bed. You evidently decided that your side wasn't enough for you and that you had to take mine too.'
Blinking, Jean slowly brought one hand up to poke hesitantly at her 'pillow'. 'Oh. And, err, why aren't I touching fabric right now?'
Her finger poked again at the underside of Emma's breast, before moving a few inches to the left and poking her a third time. 'Because despite your fondness for sleeping in the nude, I'm pretty sure I remember us agreeing that you'd be keeping your underwear on at a minimum.' 'If by 'agreeing' you mean you told me you'd use telekinesis to keep me from getting into bed with you, then yes, that sounds about right.'
Letting her left hand slide downward out of Jean's hair, Emma ran it back and forth across the redhead's back a few times before sliding it down to rest on Jean's ass. 'As for the current whereabouts of my missing underwear… I don't know. Perhaps it ended up wherever yours did?'
Before Jean could formulate a response, there was a soft click from off to the right, drawing both women's attention to the doorway. "You know, I'm pretty sure there's a telepathic conversation going on here that I'm missing out on for obvious reasons, but from this side of the camera app? The way you're staring into each other's eyes makes it look like a moment where Peter Gabriel should be playing in the background." There was another click followed quickly by a third, and then Cordelia lowered her cell phone. "Just wanted to let you know that breakfast is almost ready. And if anyone wants a copy of these for posterity - or blackmail - lemme know. And by 'anyone', I totally mean Emma."
Emma couldn't help but chuckle at that even as Jean buried her face in the blonde's neck and groaned. "You don't think Jean might want to blackmail me?"
"…no?" Tucking her phone back into her pocket, Cordelia turned to leave before calling back over her shoulder to them. "If I was Michelle, I'd make a lesbianism-centric food innuendo here… maybe something about eating in bed? But I'm not. So… breakfast. We'll be in the dining room. Come and get it. Or not. Doesn't really matter to me." And with that she disappeared down the hall, presumably on her way to the breakfast she'd stopped to inform them about.
Sliding her hand up to rest at the small of Jean's back, Emma idly tapped her fingers against the redhead's soft skin as she stared at the empty doorway. 'Hmm. I should have asked what they're serving for breakfast. Then again, it can't be any worse than what I ate yesterday.'
That earned her a stare of disbelief, to which Emma responded with a defensive shrug. 'What? For an establishment that advertises itself as a 'bed 'n breakfast', the latter was sorely lacking at the Cheshire Cat Inn.'
Jean lifted her head and stared at Emma for a few seconds before shaking her head slowly. 'We've stumbled upon a girl who is - according to those who know her - essentially Mystique's daughter by way of magic. She's very good friends with Magneto's granddaughter and living with a possible relation of Logan's. Cordelia just waltzed out of the room with blackmail material on us, we went to bed in our underwear and woke up naked… all of this is going on, and your biggest concern is the quality of what you're being served for breakfast? You are an odd, odd creature, Emma Frost.' 'So says the woman who's snuggling with someone she supposedly hates. In the nude, no less.'
Emma's words made Jean glance down at herself before blushing as red as her hair and finally rolling off onto 'her' half of the bed. 'That was a statement of fact, darling, not a complaint. Now I'm cold.' 'Deal with it.' 'Very well.'
Glancing to her left to gauge the distance between them, Emma wiggled a few inches closer to Jean before rolling over, throwing one pale leg across the redhead's hips as she moved to straddle her supine companion. Ignoring the strangled gasp Jean emitted, Emma looked her new pillow up and down a few times before placing her hands on Jean's sternum and lowering her chin to rest on the back of one hand. It wasn't the most comfortable position she'd ever been in - she made a mental note to have Bruce remind Jean about the increased caloric needs that came with being a member of Homo sapiens superior
- but the delicious mixture of disbelief and mortification on Jean's face made it all worthwhile. 'Consider it dealt with.'
Closing her eyes, Jean groaned. 'Please get off of me before I'm forced to throw you through a wall or two.' 'You wouldn't do that, darling. Then who would you use as a pillow tonight?' 'I hate you.' 'You have an interesting way of showing it.'
November 20, 2011
Rosenberg Household - Willow's Room
Willow groaned as she rolled over, trying to escape the beam of sunlight tormenting her. Sunlight? Wait a second, hadn't she just been in the graveyard with Cordelia and Michelle and a bunch of other mutants? At night? Why was there sunlight? Shooting upright, Willow looked around with wild eyes. Yes. They'd definitely been in the graveyard. And that angry guy in black leather had shot Michelle with a laser beam that'd come out of his eyes. But then… why was she at home? In her bedroom? Where was Michelle? Was she all right? Willow frowned. Why couldn't she remember anything?
Rolling out of bed, Willow felt air against her skin and glanced down. Huh. While she wasn't completely naked, she'd somehow managed to misplace the clothes she'd worn to the Bronze the night before, leaving her in just her underwear. So not only had she blacked out or something, but someone had brought her home and proceeded to strip her down before tucking her in for the night. The whole situation was just getting weirder and more disturbing by the minute.
Padding down the hall to Michelle's room, Willow opened the door and peeked in. She found her 'cousin' lying on the bed in her blue base form, chest rising and falling slowly. And from what Willow could see of said chest? There were no burns, scars, or other marks from where she'd been shot. Her skin was a slightly darker shade of blue in one spot, but that was it. How was that possible, though? Willow was certain Michelle had been hit; it'd picked the redhead up and tossed her across the graveyard like a rag doll.
So what the heck was going on? How was Michelle miraculously healed? Who had brought them both home and put them to bed? And most importantly of all… where was the guy who'd shot Michelle? Because as soon as she found him… Willow growled softly, her hands curling into fists. Then came a soft tearing sound, followed shortly thereafter by sharp spikes of pain from between her first knuckles. Looking down, her eyes widened as she took in the two bony white claws sticking out of each hand.
While Willow was normally against cursing, it felt wholly appropriate here.
What the fuck?
November 20, 2011
Rosenberg Household - Michelle's Room
She smelled beef.
Michelle sniffed a few more times. Swiss cheese and grilled onions too. That eliminated most of the suspects: Burger King didn't have anything with Swiss cheese this month, nor did McDonald's, and the lack of accompanying chicken smell meant it couldn't be from Doublemeat Palace even if they did offer something with onions and Swiss. That left Jack in the Box or a to-go order from a real restaurant… or Carl's Jr. Probably not the latter, though; anyone who knew her well enough to order for her would have known to grab something off Green Burrito's menu for her if they'd visited one of the three co-branded locations in Sunnydale.
Opening her eyes, Michelle stared at the half-unwrapped Sirloin Swiss & Grilled Onion Burger hovering in front of her face for a moment before her eyes slid up the toned, tanned arm that was holding it. Cordelia stared back at her, a faintly disapproving look on her face. "Don't get used to this. The junk food or the delivery service, that is. I just figured that since you'd slept half the day away, I might need something to lure you out of bed before you slept the other half away too."
Never one to look a gift horse in the mouth, Michelle propped herself up against the headboard before taking the burger from Cordelia, patting a spot next to her with her free hand. "Thanks. I don't know why, but I feel hungry enough to eat an entire cow." As she leaned in to bite her burger, something caught her eye and she paused. The hand holding her burger was blue. So was the other, for that matter. It took her a minute to realize why she was in her base form, the events of the previous evening coming back to her in a jumble of sights, sounds, and pain. "Note to self: next time I want to reveal myself to another mutant, let's make sure they don't have issues with my… mother… first."
"Probably a good idea, yeah." Taking the offered spot beside Michelle, Cordelia was silent through the redhead's first few bites before abruptly punching her bicep hard. "Don't you dare do something like that again, you hear me? The only one allowed to hurt you is me. And… maybe one of the Cordettes, if you're out of punching range when you say something you deserve to be hit for."
Wincing, Michelle set her burger down so she could rub her arm. "Ow. Message received, loud and clear. I'll try not to get shot by a mutant who can blast energy out of his eyes again in the future. Cross my heart." Picking up her lunch again, Michelle went to take a bite before pausing and looking over at Cordelia. "Hey, Cordy? If I didn't know better, I'd almost think you cared about me."
Cordelia rolled her eyes before grabbing Michelle's wrist, pulling the burger over so she could take a bite. After chewing and swallowing, she pushed the sandwich back towards Michelle's mouth. "Good thing you know better, huh?" Dipping one hand into the brown paper bag, she emerged with an onion ring and began to nibble on it while Michelle ate her burger. "So… Willow's a mutant. With scary claws and anger management issues and a healing factor that can reboot her after someone shuts her brain off. Doesn't really seem like her, you know? I would've pictured her as having the mutant power to talk to computers or something."
"Mmmph?" Michelle debated but couldn't really justify doing a decent spit take; she was really, really hungry. Instead, she chewed and swallowed as fast as possible so she could talk. "Wait, what? Willow's a what now? With what, what, and what?"
"Oh, right, you were a bit unconscious for all the good stuff last night. It turns out Willow's a mutant. When Scott blasted you, she freaked the hell out, popped bone claws out of her hands, and attacked him. Next, Janet showed up and helped even the odds because hey, guess who else in our little group is a mutant? Yeah, I didn't see that one coming either. Anyway, there was some fighting and then Emma Frost showed up and sorted things out. Did you know she had a Boston accent these days? She was pulling a Madonna the last time I saw her and now she's all like… Emmer Frahst." Cordelia snickered before popping another onion ring into her mouth. "After that, we brought you and Willow back here, tucked you two in, and then I took Emma and Jean back to my house for the night. The girls-"
"Ivette and Rachel slept in here with me and Betsy stayed with Willow." At Cordelia's surprised look, Michelle tapped one temple with her free hand. "We had a chat before they fell asleep last night." As Michelle went back to eating her lunch, her mind raced. In the future, she decided, she would definitely do her best to stick to her 'no more getting shot' resolution. It sounded like she'd missed some really interesting stuff. Making quick work of the remainder of her burger, Michelle crumpled up the paper and stuffed it back into the bag. Feeling around, she discovered a mostly empty cardboard container and shrugged; she wasn't a particularly big fan of onion rings, so it didn't really bother her that Cordelia had decimated them. "Speaking of the girls - and Willow, for that matter - where is everyone?"
Cordelia snickered at that question, making Michelle raise an eyebrow. "Jean's probably still trying to run away from Emma right now." Oh? There was definitely a story there, too, but Michelle had more important things to worry about at the moment. "The glowing eye gang was downstairs in the living room last time I saw them, and Willow was sitting there just sorta staring off into space. She's either contemplating life, the universe, and everything… or the claws she can't seem to make go away. Not sure which."
Stretching, Michelle winced as her back popped noisily. "Remind me to try and nudge her into asking Ivette for help. And if she says no, to ask Ivette for her. I mean, if she can come up with a working theory on why I can't turn back into Xander after only a few hours. There's a good chance that she can fix Willow too." Or at least Michelle hoped she could. Otherwise the Rosenbergs would have something else to freak out about when they got home. "Oh, and if you've planned my day for me, I'd appreciate being told what I'm going to be doing."
"I don't know. It's kinda fun to watch you stumble along behind me." Polishing off the last onion ring, Cordelia let out a remarkably loud burp. "How about you start by getting dressed? Random half-naked girl wandering the house would be weird enough, but random half-naked blue girl is even weirder."
Michelle debated pointing out she'd been a 'random half-naked blue girl' the entire time they'd been talking and Cordelia hadn't seemed to mind, but decided discretion was the better part of valor. Waiting until the door closed behind Cordelia, Michelle slid off the bed and wandered over to stand in front of her mirror. After a month of regular shapeshifting, slipping back into her Michelle Flaherty façade was a piece of cake, taking a few seconds longer than normal as she cycled through a handful of hair colors before settling on distinctive shade of blond that Emma and Ivette Frost shared.
Moving over to her hamper, Michelle sniffed a few different items before locating a pair of sweat pants and a t-shirt that didn't smell too horrible. It didn't make sense to put clean clothes on a dirty body, she figured, but she evidently had to put something on before she was allowed out of her room. She found herself wondering who'd stripped her down for bed. Ivette? Rachel? Or, better yet, Cordelia? On the other hand, Emma Frost was quite possibly the only woman on Earth capable of dethroning Miriam Chase as Queen of the MILFs, so Michelle wouldn't have minded too much if the older blonde had been the one to tuck her in…
And considering that there were three telepaths in the house at the moment, Michelle reminded herself, she should probably get off of that train of thought. Leaving her room behind, she descended the stairs to find the living room occupied by far more people than she was used to. Usually it was just her and Willow, with maybe one or two others at most in the house with them at any given time.
Today, though, there were the usual suspects - Cordelia poking away at her cell phone as Willow sat there staring at the two bony white claws jutting out of her fist - along with the three out-of-towners, two of whom she'd yet to actually meet in person. Ivette sat on the end of the couch nearest to her, scribbling madly on a pad of paper as she muttered to herself, while Rachel appeared to be instructing Betsy in the art of… telekinetic knitting? Michelle tilted her head to one side. At least that was what it looked like. There was knitting occurring. Or maybe they were crocheting; she didn't know or care what the difference between the two was. Either way, she saw yarn and needles, the needles were moving, and what looked like scarves were being produced. But there were no hands holding the needles. So… telekinetic knitting. If there was a better explanation out there, she couldn't think of it. "Well, this is cozy."
Claws abruptly disappearing back into her hand, Willow vaulted over the back of the chair she was sitting in and raced over to Michelle, pouncing her and sending her stumbling back to land heavily on the third step. "Michelle! You're okay! I was really worried about you because you got shot and then I blacked out and I had no clue what happened except I woke up back in my bed in my underwear and you were in your bed with no clothes on either and then these big claws came out of my hands and I can't make them go away and Cordelia says I hurt people last night but I think I'd remember that and Betsy says she slept in my bed with me and that doesn't bother me and so I think I might be kinda ga-"
Slapping one hand over Willow's mouth as she wrapped the other around the slimmer girl's waist, Michelle sighed in exasperation before leaning to one side so she could shoot a glare Cordelia's way. "Did you give her caffeine again?"
"No, scarily enough, that's all Willow right there. I think her mutant powers are enhancing her lungs so she can babble faster and longer." Finishing what she was doing, Cordelia looked up from her phone. "So, plans for the day. Emma said she and Jean would be back at one. I don't know whether or not that's still the plan, what with the way Jean's avoiding Emma and all, but we should probably assume it is until we hear otherwise. Which means you should be showered and wearing clothes that aren't from the hamper by then, Michelle."
Gently sliding Willow off of her lap, Michelle made her way over to sit in the chair her friend had recently vacated. She raised an eyebrow when Willow perched on the armrest, leaning against her, but… well, everyone here knew the truth. If it kept Willow calm, helpful, and - most importantly - non-stabby? She'd allow it. "You know, you could have told me that when I was upstairs in the room next to the bathroom. Just a thought. And what's wrong with hamper clothes for now? Until I shower-"
Cordelia waved her hand dismissively, cutting her off. "Hey, I've done the same thing. It makes sense. It doesn't, however, make the clothes you're wearing any less rumpled and stinky." Point. "And my memory's good, but it's not perfect. Filling you in on our plans for the day down here means that if I forget anything, there are four people in the room who might remember and remind me. Unless you want all of us to follow you upstairs, and we can stand around in the bathroom and chat while you shower?" Pass. Unless Cordelia wanted to join her in the shower while she washed up so they could discuss things face-to-face… and that was another thought she didn't need to be entertaining in a room full of telepaths. "Anyway, again, Emma and Jean should be back around one. Our friends are going to be here at two. Harmony… I'm guessing somewhere between two thirty and three if we're lucky. It's Harmony, after all. I was thinking last night-"
"Did it hurt?"
"-and I decided that it's time to come out to them as a mutant. I mean, I'm not going to get a better chance. If I do it now, Emma can wipe their minds for me if they freak out. Or one of the others, but probably Emma since she seems to have the least problem messing with minds. Then we'll all have a nice pizza and movie fest so that when the Rosenbergs get home, there will be plenty of distraction so they don't notice you right away. Because, you know, them treating you like yet another strange friend of Willow's instead of their niece? Pretty good way to get your cover blown. If we're really lucky, Rachel and Ivette can get into their heads and get to work before they even spot you." Looking up from whatever she'd been referencing on her phone, Cordelia let her eyes wander down the length of the couch and then on to where Willow sat beside Michelle. "Did I miss anything?"
Willow raised a hand tentatively. "Are you going to tell the Cordettes about me? Or Janet? Speaking of Janet, I wonder why she never told me she was a mutant…"
"The same reason you just asked the question you did. As far as I'm concerned, who you want to know that you're a mutant and when you're ready for them to know? That's between you and your God. I'm not going to have anything to do with it. And before you even bring her up, Michelle was a totally different situation. She owed me for playing her personal shopper, among other things. Using her to pave the way for my own coming out was just me collecting what was owed." Pausing, Cordelia nodded toward the couch full of telepaths. "All that being said, if you're going to let any or all of your friends know? Now would be a good time to do it, since we have a cleanup crew handy." Suddenly, she snapped her fingers. "Knew I was forgetting something. Obviously we're going to chase the girls out at a reasonable hour, but I'm thinking we should keep the telepaths around for a bit longer. You know, in case everything goes to hell when Willow confronts the Rosenbergs about her parentage."
Groaning, Willow buried her face in her hands. "For the last time, Cordelia, I know who my parents are. My mom and dad met in freshman year of college and simple math proves that I can't possibly be my mom's high school teen pregnancy baby with another man from before she met my dad. And my mom would never cheat on my dad. Just because the mutants from Xavier's know a mutant with claws and a healing factor doesn't mean that he's my dad." Looking up, Willow jabbed a finger at Ivette. "She's a telepath and she's not related to Jean Grey."
Ivette looked up from her work at that, rolling her eyes. "Because I'm the daughter of Emma Frost, who happens to be a telepath. And a transmorph, another power I happen to share with her."
While Ivette had a point there, Willow refused to be denied. "And fine, Rachel will say the same thing about Jean if I try to connect her to Emma. But! How do you explain the fact that Jean and Emma aren't sisters or cousins or anything? If there was only one family tree out there for each mutant power, they'd have to be related somehow. And they'd both be related to that Xavier guy. And Betsy and her parents."
Much to Michelle's surprise, Rachel threw her head back and laughed loudly at that one. "Oh Christ, now there's a frightening thought. Jean and Emma being related, that is. I might have come out with three eyes or something." And then, before Michelle could ask if that meant what she thought it meant, the redhead surged to her feet and shifted from flesh and blood to blood red crystal.