Maddie sat in the rocking chair holding Nathan, who had fallen asleep. She didn't know what her husband would do - she wasn't even certain if Scott knew what he would do. But her son, her adorable, perfect baby Nathan loved her. Nathan wouldn't want to leave her behind for some other redhead that shared some similar features. Wouldn't leave her behind like a boring dream in the light of day.
She knew that Scott had loved Jean before he'd even met her. Jean would always hold a place in his heart and his memories. She just didn't know if the place in Scott's heart for Maddie was big enough to keep him here instead of returning to Jean, returning to Westchester and the excitement of life among the X-Men. To the friends of his youth and the excitement of being a hero.
Scott had married her, had promised her the rest of their lives together. Would he keep that promise? Or would he return to his first love, a woman miraculously returned from the dead? How could an amnesic pilot, even if she was his wife and the mother of his child, compete with a heroic first love, returned from the dead?
If Scott did stay with her, would it be out of love and devotion to her and Nathan, or would it be out of duty? Would he come to resent her and Nathan for keeping him here? For keeping him from adventure and excitement? Keeping him from his first love? Would he resent her for not being Jean? Did he even realize that he still compared her to Jean all the time?
Would she even want him to stay if it was just for duty and not for love? Would she be able to tell the difference? Would she even want to know, if he said the right things, if he was there for love or for duty?
Maddie couldn't even be certain if she wanted to know the true answer. Actually knowing the answer was another step beyond that.
She didn't let herself reach towards Scott as she drifted to sleep. It would only hurt if he ignored her, as he did when he got all broody. Let alone the pain it caused when he'd be asleep, or mostly that way, and mutter Jean...
Maddie knew that she was dreaming. She could see a cord, like twisted fire , behind her into darkness. Ahead of her, the cord frayed apart, not into a few strands, but into many, each fraying into still more as it went ahead. Mist seemed to swirl around the fraying strands, keeping her from seeing where they went.
"You are not precisely here." The figure looked short, with a large head and unblinking huge eyes. The blue skin and odd toga and cloak combination seemed quite surreal.
Maddie considered the figure, wondering how she had dreamed this... this blue not-Roman whatever he was. "I know that I'm dreaming. But... what is the cord? What does it mean?"
The strange blue man sighed, "You see it as a cord... I suppose that makes sense. The cord represents your life, and the events. Behind you has already taken place. Before you are possibilities. Hundreds, thousands, some dependant on the choices that you make, others dependant on the choices of other humans, and still others dependant on natural events beyond your control. In some, there will be a strong earthquake near your home. In others, there will be meteorites. Choices about staying where you are or moving to other locations. So many, many possibilities..."
"Which one is the right choice?" Maddie peered at the threads, gold and red and orange and blue and some that looked like fire.
"Define 'the right choice.' Before such a valuation can be made, you must determine your standards," the blue man tilted his large head.
"You're saying the best choice for me might not be the best choice for Scott, or for Nathan," Maddie whispered.
"There are some possibilities that lead to your tragic demise. Others lead to lives... I believe the saying is filled with excitement and drama. Others are less dramatic, but longer. As for your son, there are several paths that lead to your tragic demise. In many, he also suffers, and in a few, he becomes a powerful and respected warrior. There are other possibilities where he does not gain so much power, but is... happy."
"Are there possibilities where I raise Nathan, and he grow up to be happy? Where we can both be happy?" Maddie whispered.
"Some. A few even have his father staying with you," the blue man replied. "Scott has his own choices to make."
"And he might choose to leave me. If he does, would he take Nathan, or leave him with me? Is Nathan more likely to be happy?" Maddie knew that she should be upset - perhaps raging, perhaps sobbing with tears running down her face. But this was all a dream, wasn't it?
"There are possibilities for any of those." The blue man hesitated, and then, in a voice barely above a whisper, added, "If he does not stay, there are still possibilities for you to be happy. His departure need not send you into despair and destruction."
"I can't make him choose, but I can survive, can deal with whatever choice he makes," Maddie whispered.
Maddie woke, her husband asleep in the bed with her. She didn't recall actually making it to the bed, let alone Scott joining her.
There had been a strange dream... a conversation with someone blue... it was fading quickly. But she remembered an image of a cord, fraying into a hundred threads. Words about possibilities and choices.
She could keep going, regardless of what Scott decided to do about Jean not being dead. If he stayed or left, her life would continue. Without giant purple thugs.
Her choices mattered in the future as well. She could remember that much from her dream.
Maybe that would be enough.
end Maddie Dreams: Choices.
End Maddie Dreams.