Disclaimer: All belongs to Marvel. etc, etc, etc. Damn it all.
Authors notes: This is a sequel to our previous story "Opposites Attract", an AU ending to Season 2. This story picks up somewhere around the end of Season 2.
Words in //slashes// indicate telepathic conversation.
All was quiet in the X-mansion on a beautiful summer morning. The day was calm, the house was just beginning to stir as the various students finished getting ready for school after breakfast, and it was another lovely day in Bayville.
In the bathroom, the toothbrush that Erik Magnus Lensherr had been lifting to his mouth clattered to the floor as he stared at his reflection in shock.
The former Master of Magnetism known as Magneto had been living with the X-Men ever since being "youthenised" through an accidental side-effect of using a second copy of the World War II-era Project Rebirth to save his life and return him to his prime. Not only had he lost most of his memories of his former life as a mutant terrorist in the process, as his 18-year-old body testified, he'd overshot the mark slightly.
While living with the X-Men he'd become part of the team, even to the extent of joining them on several missions. Despite forming friendships with the other young mutants around him (notably the mutant girl known only as Rogue), there was still the occasional moment of nervousness in the X-Men when they thought that he might remember his old ways of destruction and violence, seeking the domination of mutant-kind over humans.
And so, when Scott Summers entered the shared bathroom and saw Erik staring aghast at his reflection, he feared the worst.
"Erik? What's wrong?"
"Ghk!" Erik said, pointing at his reflection. "Hnk!"
*No!* Scott thought. *Please don't let him be getting his memories back.*
"What's wrong?" He repeated, a little louder this time.
Erik took a deep breath.
Scott flinched at the nearly hysterical tone of voice.
"Look at my FACE!!!!" Erik wailed.
"Uhm, it looks the same as usual," Scott crossed the fingers of his right hand, and raised his left to the ever-present ruby-lens sunglasses he wore.
"Are you BLIND?!" Erik shrieked. "LOOK AT ME!"
"What's all the shouting about?"
Kurt Wagner bamfed into the room, blue fur sticking up every which way. "Ach! I hate morning fur." He shot a casual glance Erik's way and froze. "Oh man!"
"Sshhh!" Scott said hurriedly.
"How can I be quiet?" Kurt demanded. "That's the biggest zit I've ever seen!"
"Noooooo..." Erik moaned.
Scott blinked. "A pimple? You're getting all worked up over a _pimple_?"
"It's on my NOSE!" Erik howled. "Everyone will see it! I can't believe this, I've never had a pimple before in my entire LIFE! I've never been so embarrassed! It's not fair! I hate being a teenager!"
He stormed out of the bathroom.
"At least he took it well," Scott offered lamely.
Kurt shook his head. "Right on the nose. That's rough dude. Maybe the Prof could make him an image inducer to fix the problem."
"I think you're overreacting just a _tad_," Scott said in irritation.
Elsewhere in the mansion, someone else was coming to the same conclusion.
"Are you SURE you're really eighty years old?" Rogue demanded. "Because right now ya're acting like a great big baby!"
Erik glared at her.
Rogue glared right back.
Unlike most of her teammates, Rogue had no fear that Erik would regain his memories of his time as Magneto, Master of Magnetism. This was because she knew that he already _had_. Despite this, he'd elected to stay with the X-Men and see if their dream that humans and mutants could live together in peace could really work. The only ones who knew of his regained memories were Rogue, and Professor Xavier himself.
Of course, if you'd read our first story, Opposites Attract, you wouldn't have needed me to tell you all this.
But back to the story.
"It looks awful," Erik whined. Then he winced as he listened to himself. Oh God, he was turning into a whiny teenager, somebody shoot him.
Rogue was unsympathetic. "They happen to everyone."
"They never happened to _me_," Erik snarled.
"Poor baby," Rogue mocked him gently. "Here. Ya got a variety of methods to deal with it, so here's some cream, concealer and a cleanser. And hurry up! You just got done with all of your Saturday detentions last week, you don't want to get one for your collection of tardies."
Grumbling, Erik accepted her offering and headed for one of the other bathrooms. As he turned the corridor corner he paused.
"And I'm not a day over _seventy-two_!"
Rogue just smirked at him, and he realised what he'd said.
Ears burning, Erik retreated to the safety of the bathroom. Damn it all! She'd gotten him again.
Ever since Rogue had found out that his memories had returned to him, and that he intended to stay, she'd begun a campaign to find out more about him. So far he'd managed to avoid giving her too many details, but she was slowly getting better and better about teasing information out of him.
As he attended to his face he contemplated the young mutant. Ever since their adventures a few weeks ago, Rogue had been... warmer towards him. His face heated as he remembered the way Charles had looked at him the other day when he and Rogue had been laughing together. A knowing smirk. Dammit! He wasn't here because of Rogue, he wasn't _interested_ in Rogue. She was just a friend! A fellow mutant! A potential ally in the cause of mutantkind!
"ERIK! HURRY UP!"
And a damn nuisance sometimes.
"Coming!" Erik yelled back.
He flung open the door to the bathroom.
"We'll have to run," Rogue informed him coolly. Then her lips curved in an unusual smile and her eyes twinkled. "Are ya up to it?"
Erik couldn't resist. "Ready, set, GO!"
The two mutants sprinted from the mansion, and Erik was only slightly horrified to find himself joining Rogue in some hysterical giggling as they ran through the gardens. They raced down the street and through some of the back-alleys of Bayville, taking the shortest route to school.
"We're making good time," Rogue said, glancing at her watch. The third one this month. Damn magnetic powers!
"We should make it on time as long as nothing..."
"THERE THEY ARE!"
"... happens..." Eric trailed off. Rogue shot him a Look. "Ya just HAD to go and say it, didn't ya?"
They turned to see three men approaching them from the other end of the alleyway.
Erik and Rogue stared at them.
"Yours?" Rogue asked calmly.
Erik grimaced. "Pyro, Colossus, and Gambit. Thank goodness Sabretooth isn't here."
There was a roar in the background.
"So much for goodness," Rogue began to back up as the others approached. "Why are they _here_?"
"They probably want to take me back and make me be what I was."
"Is there a way to DO that?"
"Probably. I haven't thought about it much."
"Oh crap." Rogue looked at the mutants. "Well, big one first."
So saying, she knocked Colossus head over heels using her magnetic powers.
"Stand down! I command you!" Erik bellowed at the remaining too. Then Sabretooth tackled him from behind.
"No more commands, _brat_," he growled into Erik's here. "Once you're back to yourself, you'll thank us."
Rogue magnetically wrapped a beam around Pyro, tightening it until he lost consciousness, then turned to find herself confronted by the remaining Acolyte. *Gambit Ah think Erik said. Crap. He coulda mentioned his powers.* She grumbled to herself.
Gambit smiled at her, and all thoughts fled her mind. *Wow*
"So you're the little sweet that's been keeping the Master of Magnetism away from his post," he said softly, a faint French accent colouring his tone. "He does have odd tastes, our leader. You must be a rare sweet indeed, chere."
Something started screaming in Rogue's head.
Gambit picked up her hand and gently bestowed a kiss on the back of it. Unfortunately, Rogue was still wearing her "civilian" gloves. The ones with the open backs. His lips were soft on her skin.
*Wha?* Rogue was too enchanted to pull away, as Gambit's body went rigid. Then she began to think again.
"EWWWW!!! You're flirting with me! GROSS!" Rogue smacked Gambit away. "And now Ah've got your slimy thoughts in mah head! MERDE! Qu'est-ce qu'a pu probablement tourner mal?" 
Erik finally managed to beat Sabretooth back by pelting him with 'thrown' metal bars, finally throwing one that caught Sabretooth right between the eyes, knocking him out. "Rogue! Are you alright?" He demanded anxiously as the girl ran up to him.
Rogue looked at him curiously, and then smiled sweetly. Erik's heart paused briefly, and then resumed beating at least twice the normal speed.
"Erik," she asked flirtatiously. "Do you _like_ me?"
Erik swallowed. "Um, yes?"
She brushed her hair out of her face and leaned closer to him, still smiling, this time more seductively. "Reeeeallly?"
"Yes!" Erik blurted. "Yes I do. Very much. More than I should."
"Awww, that is _so sweet_," Rogue took his hands carefully and placed an object in them. "This is for you, for being such a sweetheart." She looked deep into his eyes, and Erik melted.
She turned and walked away and he stared after her longingly. Then his eyes went down to see what token she'd left him.
The Queen of Hearts glowed one final time before exploding in his hands.
"THAT'S FOR HIRING SUCH JERKS!" Rogue yelled at him from the entrance to the alleyway. "Thanks to them we're going to be late to school... AGAIN!"
Erik sprinted to catch up to her. "It's not my fault! And that was a rotten trick!"
Rogue widened her eyes and stared at him with huge eyes. "Are you mad at me?"
"GAH! Stop doing that!"
"Sorry," Rogue giggled.
Erik eyed her nervously. "You didn't hold on for too long again did you?"
"NO! Anyway, HE touched ME!"
Erik paled. "He WHAT!" He knew well the Cajun's Casanova reputation.
Rogue laughed at him. "Relax." She waved her gloved hands at him in explanation and then frowned. "But it's still awful."
"Oh well," Erik shrugged. "At least there's a silver lining."
Rogue glared at him. "And what would THAT be?"
"Didn't you tell me you had a French test first period?"
Rogue's eyes widened and then she grinned. "C'est vrai! Quelle fortune!" Then she smirked. "And Ah have a science test third period. Hey Erik, c'mere."
"DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT!!!"
"Where are my socks?" Pietro yelled, zooming into his sister's room he paused and looked around.
Wanda levelled the glare of death (TM) at him. "Pietro, there is no remote possibility of your socks EVER turning up in MY room, so... GET OUT!!!"
"She's in a bad mood?" Fred asked as Pietro came down the stairs more slowly that usual... due to the lamp wrapped around his head.
"That's what makes you such a stimulating conversationalist, Blob... your quick wit and excellent grasp of the obvious," snarled Pietro savagely. "Now shut up and help me get this thing off my head!"
Lance raised an eyebrow as he passed the odd, but highly amusing, spectacle of Fred attempting to free Pietro. He didn't offer to help, mainly because it was funnier to leave it be and also because he had to pick up Kitty. He smirked as he exited the Brotherhood house. Really, he should've hit on this plan earlier... hiding Pietro's socks had been a brainwave. The silver-haired speedster was bound to stir the rest of the house up leaving Lance free to slip out unhindered.
However, Wanda caught up to him just as he reached the jeep and thwarted his brilliant plan. Without speaking she hopped in the back and proceeded to glare at him, drumming her fingernails on the side as he stared at her. "Well?" she said finally. "Are you going to start this junk-heap up or what?"
"I..." Lance fumed. There wasn't very much he could say. Certainly the prospect of telling Wanda to get out wasn't good. She had a habit of making people REALLY regret it when she was annoyed. "Fine," he snapped, getting in and starting the jeep. "But we're picking someone up."
"Kitty?" Wanda smirked. "I know. Rogue told me."
Lance scowled. Unfortunately he didn't have grounds to gripe about Wanda's friendship with the Goth X-Man. Still, he really wished the two girls weren't friends... despite the bonus of them driving Pietro crazy... it was just such an unnerving combination.
"Wanda? Sweetums, wait for me!" Todd's voice filtered out and Wanda jabbed Lance in the back. "What are you waiting for?" she hissed. "Drive!"
"Stop ordering me about!" Lance snapped, but he put his foot down and accelerated away with more speed than usual, glad - for once - to avoid having Todd as a passenger. It wasn't that Lance disliked him, but Todd's crush on Wanda was sickening for everyone... not just her.
Kitty was waiting outside the gates of the Xavier mansion, hopping from one foot to the other in her impatience. She blinked when she saw Wanda in the car, but said nothing about it, just smiling hello as she jumped in the seat beside Lance.
"We could take Rogue as well," Wanda said before Lance started the jeep.
"We can't," Kitty said, twisting to face her. "She and Erik went already."
"Oh," Wanda frowned. She accepted Erik to a degree... he wasn't the man she remembered, but she still didn't trust him completely.
"It was so funny," Kitty continued. "He had this monster zit on his nose and, like, Kurt said..."
"Zit?" Wanda repeated.
"Yeah, he was SO upset!"
An odd sound startled Lance and Kitty. They both looked at Wanda and were even more startled.
Wanda was laughing
"See? I told you that we would make it in time and here we are with..." Erik checked his watch. "Hmm... I guess five or ten minutes to spare."
"I'm having trouble with my watch again," he said ruefully, shaking his wrist.
"Huh," Rogue glanced around as they walked through the main school entrance. "Y'know, we shouldn't have done that, what if someone saw us flying?"
"I doubt that," Erik said loftily. "We were quite high and came down in a deserted area..."
"But you don't know for _sure_!" Rogue argued.
"Will you stop being so pessimistic?"
"Isn't that what being a Goth is all about?" A mocking voice sounded behind Erik and he barely contained the flicker of annoyance that flashed across his face.
"Oh, hello Risty," he muttered unenthusiastically as Rogue cheerfully greeted her friend.
"So _nice_ to see you too, _Erik_," Risty gritted. She smiled at Rogue. "Sooooo, all ready for the test this morning?"
"As ready as Ah'll ever be," Rogue sighed. "What kind of sadist sets a test for first period?"
Risty didn't answer; she was too busy staring at Erik. "Why Erik," she smirked. "What IS that on your nose?"
Erik glared at her, but before he could think of some cutting remark another, equally unwelcome, voice intruded.
"Hello Rogue, Risty…" Wanda walked into Erik's view. "Erik." She looked at him and made a peculiar snorting sound. Rogue glanced curiously at her friend. "Are you laughing?"
"Me? No, no, not at all," Wanda's eyes fixed on Erik's nose and her lips twitched.
Erik fumed. "If you _ladies_ will excuse me, I am going to my first class," he said stiffly. "See you at lunch, Rogue." He stalked away with all the frigid dignity he could muster, ears burning as the three girls starting laughing behind him.
End of Prologue
 Literally, "What else could possibly go wrong?"
Go on to Chapter One
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