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Jonothon Starsmore furnaceface
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A Room at the Arms Hotel, Saturday Morning
Last night, after the dance, Jono and Raven had decided that it was probably best to get themselves a hotel room. After all, it was already late, and given how they'd managed to work themselves up to their particular state of amorousness simply by being near one another (the joys of being a telepath and an empath), sexiling either of their roommates would have just been bad form.

Jonothon had been the first to wake up. And it hadn't been the sunshine and the birds outside the window to do that, either. It had been... a while, to say the least, since he'd shared a bed with somebody. Longer still since the somebody that he'd shared his bed with was this particular somebody. And, even though he'd lost his psionic abilities decades ago, without even looking he still knew the smell of her, and the feel of her skin, as if it had been only yesterday.

Fandom Island always was one for cruel jokes.

His first thought was to slide out of bed, try to get himself ready without waking her up, and just make his way out to some quiet part of the island. He still wasn't so certain about being here for this reunion at all, and had been intending to spend as much time as possible just sitting alone somewhere to talk himself out of it.

He went with his second thought. Always did, didn't he? What use was the ability to think better of himself if he didn't make use of it? Or, for that matter, to think worse of himself?

"Good morning, Sunshine."

[For that woman in the room!]


2011-04-02 12:16 pm (UTC) (Link)

Raven had been excited and apprehensive about returning to Fandom for this reunion, but she'd done her best to embrace the excitement about seeing old friends again. When she and Karla and Ben had arrived in Fandom, she checked into a hotel room to rest before the activities planned for the following day.

When Jono's voice roused her from her sleep, for a moment she thought she was still dreaming. That was to be expected; of course coming back to Fandom would make old memories come back. And it felt so real, like he was really there with her.

A moment later, it sunk in to her head that she wasn't alone in the bed. Someone was there with her. Her eyes flew open and she gasped in sudden confusion and fear, pushing herself up and scrambling away, taking the sheet with her to cover herself. "Who are you?" she cried, not recognizing him now. "What are you doing here?"


2011-04-02 12:22 pm (UTC) (Link)

She didn't know who he was.

Of course she didn't know who he was. He saw himself in the mirror often enough, and after fifteen years of having this face, even he didn't see himself looking back.

But that didn't help the pang in his chest, or the frown that he couldn't quite battle away as he looked quickly in the other direction. Maybe it was for the best that she didn't know him, but it still stung to see her scrambling to get away.

"Easy, luv," he murmured, shaking his head. "I wasn't expecting to wake up like this any more'n you were."

Should've just dressed and left, Starsmore. Serves you right, second-guessing yourself.


2011-04-02 12:25 pm (UTC) (Link)

She knew that voice, though she'd only heard it in dreams and in her mind before, not like this. And she still treasured, after all this time, the long-ago memory of a dark-haired little girl who'd drawn on her face with blue lipstick and claimed her daddy was the wrong color.

"Jono?" she said softly, disbeliving.


2011-04-02 12:31 pm (UTC) (Link)

"Jono," he agreed, turning a smile that was more than just a touch wry back toward her. It wasn't exactly a long-lived smile. It faltered a moment later, and then he was glancing around, looking for his clothing.

On the floor, of course. Two decades hadn't made Jono any more tidy than he'd been in high school, either. He slipped out of the bed, keeping his back to her as he crouched to collect his things. His back, he was actually okay with. Nothing particularly freakish about it, save the peculiar blue-grey hue of his skin.

"It's been... a while."


2011-04-02 12:38 pm (UTC) (Link)

Raven just stared silently at him for a long moment. This had been the reason for most of her apprehension about coming back, wondering if Jono would be there. She hadn't seen him in over a decade and a half, ever since he'd sent a letter to her to break up with her and then cut off contact. She'd let her pride get the better of her then and hadn't tried to find out what was going on.

And now that sorely wounded pride warred with confusion and the remembered feelings of long ago, ones that had taken her years to bury but now came bubbling up again. For the moment, at least, pride won.

"Turn around," she said, moving closer to him. And as soon as he turned to face her, she slapped him across the face.


2011-04-02 12:42 pm (UTC) (Link)

He hadn't been expecting that.

Especially not from Raven.

But, as he lifted his hand to rub at his stinging cheek, he didn't give her a wounded look. Barely even winced as he looked back down again, pretending to be suddenly very interested in the way his shirt was laying over his trousers, like so.

"I probably deserved that, didn't I?"

And how, Jon.


2011-04-02 12:47 pm (UTC) (Link)

He was lucky she didn't bust out the inexplicable ninja-like skills she'd gained and kick his ass.

"You did," she said coldly. "And more."

Then the frost in her voice melted, and the sorrow crept back in, making her sound much more like the Raven he remembered. "How could you do that to me?" she said brokenly. "Why?"


2011-04-02 12:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

Jonothon fell silent. The way her voice shifted like that was just another pull at his heart, another guilty breathlessness that he had to struggle to overcome.

It had been easier and far more difficult to do fifteen years ago, in a letter. Easier, because it was so impersonal, putting it down on a piece of paper. More difficult, because, looking back, right about then was when he'd needed her most of all.

"I can't excuse it," he mumbled, gathering up his trousers and standing again. "I was young, and stupid, and bloody terrified. The things they made me do..." He shook his head a little. "I really had become a monster. I couldn't face anybody after that, after Weapon X and Neverland. Least of all you."


2011-04-02 01:01 pm (UTC) (Link)

Raven clutched the sheet to her chest, trying to will herself not to start to cry. She'd shed enough tears for him in the past.

There was that pride again.

"Your face is whole again," she said. The color was a shock, as well as the poccylips, but given what Elizabeth had said, it shouldn't have been.

"You have a face," she reiterated, "and the first thing I should have been doing was kiss it. But because of you, it is slapping it instead." Because of both of them, to be truthful, but she wasn't admitting that. Yet.


2011-04-02 01:06 pm (UTC) (Link)

"Mmm, yes. Because of me." The corners of his mouth twitched a little as he started to get dressed. Trousers first. Belt, next. A momentary pause taken to consider whether or not he should pull on the collar, today.

It might be a good idea. One never knew who else was going to slap you in the face at these high school reunions.

"Because of something I did fifteen years ago, Raven." He picked the collar up and turned it over in his hands. It had taken him a while to reverse-engineer the reverse-engineered technology so that he could make it run off of a power source that he could get his hands on, but now that he had, it was as much a part of him now as his bandages had been before. He snapped it into place before making a grab for his t-shirt. "For all it's worth now, I'm sorry. I am. And I was sorry then, too."


2011-04-02 01:10 pm (UTC) (Link)

"You had fifteen years to tell me that," Raven accused. "It did not occur to you to mention that to me before now? You knew very well where to find me."

Her eyes followed him as he picked up the collar and put it on, brow creasing in confusion. That, to her, was more worrisome than his new coloring. "What is that?" she said.


2011-04-02 01:15 pm (UTC) (Link)

Jon's teeth clamped down on the inside of his cheek, and he didn't dare open his mouth again before he was positive that he could do so without raising his voice.

Deep breaths. Relax. Good.

"Just a toy." He shook his head, shaking off the guilt and the bitterness and anything else that threatened to swallow him up and send him to his knees, begging for forgiveness for being young and afraid, once. "It's what's left of my dignity, Raven. Nothing to worry about."

Of course it had occurred to him to mention it to her before. He'd spent a decade, spooking himself out of it. And, like with Gayle when he'd hurt her, after a while there had been too much guilt for him to even think that it was his place anymore to do the reaching.


2011-04-02 01:20 pm (UTC) (Link)

"You have changed, but I have not," Raven said. Well, not with regards to her gifts, at least. "I can still sense what you are feeling, Jono."

She'd felt that guilt and bitterness, and it battled with her own. She wanted to grab hold of him and kiss him and pretend the last fifteen years had never happened, but she was frightened as well. What if she opened herself up to him and he just walked away from her again, shattering her heart and leaving her empty and alone?


2011-04-02 01:26 pm (UTC) (Link)

Of course she could sense what he was feeling. He allowed himself a wry smile as he pulled his shirt on, and then made a reach for his coat.

"That's why I wrote you a letter, luv."

It was impersonal. He'd needed impersonal. If he'd gone to her in person, she would have known that it wasn't her that he was running away from, it was himself. Just living day by day had begun to hurt. He didn't want anybody to try to talk him into it.


2011-04-02 01:29 pm (UTC) (Link)

"And now you are just going to walk away from me again?" Raven said, pride caving a tiny bit to let some desperation into her voice.

She didn't know what to do. Part of her didn't want to see him at all. Part of her didn't want to let him go again.

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