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Title: 1920151813, Codename: Storm

Author: Tempest

Disclaimer: I don’t own any characters recognizable from X-Men or any of its affiliated comics, movies, etc, and I guess that should go without saying that I don’t own the comics, movies, so forth and so on either. Stan Lee, Marvel, et al, own everything. I make no money off these works; I do this simply as a means of entertainment. No copyright infringement intended.

Dedication: To my love, William, who says I can’t write if the music ain’t loud. To Steph, who helped me so much along the way with this story. To my girls”Sparkle, Delia, Mon-luv, and Feli”for being fangirls. To my boys”S.McNasty, Daniel, and RafikitikiGod”for giving me another perspective. Love ya!

”””
Pretty poison is her cry
Belladonna watch you die
Belladonna, Karen Moline

”””

Chapter One
“She’s a killer, she’s a thriller…”


            During the day, she was a personal assistant at Shaw Enterprises, a glorified secretary being paid too much money for the little work she did. She made Mr. Shaw’s coffee, transcribed Mr. Shaw’s notes, filed Mr. Shaw’s documents, and answered Mr. Shaw’s phones. She took long breaks and left early, even when he asked her to say late. He did not, however, pay her quite enough to be glared at by Emma Frost whenever they were in the same room.

            She couldn’t say she hated her job, but she couldn’t say she loved it either. It gave her something to do during the daylight hours, no matter how mundane it was. She got away with a lot, but then again, that wasn’t what really mattered. Right now, she was taking one of those long breaks because she deserved it.
 
           She ordered a Caffé Verona. She wasn’t much of a coffee fan. She had always thought of exotic coffee blends and restaurants that catered to coffee as haughty, but she did take a decadent pleasure in certain blends. She paid for her coffee and sat alone in a secluded corner of the café, hoping for a little privacy to enjoy her break.

            Sometimes, she did some thinking about her life in general. She was in the stage where she realized that this wasn’t what she wanted to do with the rest of her life, but she was still weighing her options. She felt it would be time to move on soon. What would she do with herself, then? She could retire. She laughed to herself. She was too young to retire.

            A change of profession was in order. She was tired of seeing all the things she did. No matter how much she tried not to see it, it was starting to take its toll on her. There were a lot of other things she wanted to do with her life. She finished her coffee and walked around, browsing the shops until she felt ready to work.

            She went back to the office, only to have Sebastian to buzz her the minute she returned. She transcribed a memo to the employees about a company merger while Emma bored a psychic hole through her head… or attempted to, at least. She thought Emma entertained the idea that she wanted to sleep with Sebastian.

            Hardly. Ororo was half his age, easy. She almost snorted at the absurdity of the situation. What could she do with Sebastian, besides give him a heart attack? She didn’t want his money, and she sure as hell didn’t want him in her bed. She didn’t betray any emotion, but silently, she wished she could just slap Emma one good time and hope it knocked some sense in her not-so-natural-blonde head.

            After she finished transcribing the memo, she stood to leave. “Ororo,” Sebastian said to her. She paused, not turning to look at him, only tilting her head slightly in his direction. “Please inform Mr. Luciano that his services are no longer needed. Tonight, the Blue room at The Kurogaisha at ten o’clock. Send him my regards.”

            She stiffened when she heard “the Blue room,” but dismissed her trepidation quickly. A job was a job, after all. “Yes, Mr. Shaw,” she said, walking through the double doors of his office. Well, there went her relaxing night straight out the window.

”””


            The Kurogaisha was an underground club founded and funded by the Hellfire Club, Sebastian Shaw presiding. Their motto, “Pleasure comes at a price.” Those who were rich enough could taste the sins of The Kurogaisha. Those who weren’t could only imagine what the club had to offer. Slave trades, sadism and masochism, prostitution, drugs, blood sport arenas, they could all be found under one roof.

            And that was only a taste of what the club had to offer.

            They kept all that tastefully hidden during the day when the place acted as an silent auction house. Rare artifacts from around the world were auctioned off to the rich who didn’t exhibit a darker side. Sometimes, though, she would see the faces of the people she encountered at night all cleaned up and bidding on an authentic portrait of Henry VIII.

            The day crowd, aside from those who enjoyed everything the Kurogaisha had to offer, were not aware the Hellfire Club owned the place. They were only told that private investors funded the club. The night crowd had to follow explicit rules regarding the club. The first of which being, “You got to pay to play.” Nothing came without a price there.

            The Kurogaisha was divided into different rooms, catering to different “pleasures.” Each room was referred to by a color. The only room not named after a color was the Arena. The Arena, though not named after a color, was stained red with the blood of fighters. Two went in; one came out. Those were the rules of the Arena.

            The White room catered to the refined who liked to believe that what they were doing wasn’t so bad. The setting was lush, laid-back, seeming more like a social club than a form of a deviance. Businessmen and women flocked to the white room to enjoy their Perrier Jouët. Laughter always tinkled in the atmosphere twisting around the strands of soft, orchestra music. It was rich hypocrisy in action.

            The Green Room was a room for the sensualists. It was all about pampering their clientele, indulging their senses. It was calm, peaceful with a forest motif that actually changed with the season. The clients could play Adam and Eve all they wanted there. She wouldn’t say that was the only thing that went on there.

            The Red room was raucous, lewd, licentious. Dirty, pretty things danced on the stages of the red room, hips grinding, sweat dripping in all the right places. It was a puffed up strip-club and a little more. There was always a live band screaming away on one of the stages while women and men alike undulated, their bodies swelling and surging with the music, promising all kinds of things as long as they have money.

            The Black room was just that”black, not only in color but in essence, as well. Only dim lights lit the platforms where the “slaves” were exhibited. The clientele dressed in black robes with hoods pulled low over their faces, more fitting for some kind of sacrificial ceremony. But wasn’t there indeed a sacrifice taking place, the sacrifice of innocence? Tonight, they were auctioning off children between the ages of eleven and thirteen. Tomorrow, it would be mutant teenagers.

            And the Blue room, well, it was a world all its own.

            She pushed through a set black doors leading to the Blue room at 9:45. The only thing blue about the room was the dim, nearly dark, lighting. Everything else was done in dramatic blacks and metal-hued. She pressed her hand against the dark walls, feeling the pulse of the music from the dance floor, as she walked down the corridor.

            A small, Asian woman in black, leather shorts and a matching tie-up halter walked past her. She held a leash in her hand, leading along a man dressed only in leather pants. He crawled on all fours like an animal, keeping his eyes to the ground, as the woman tugged on his collar. Ororo averted her eyes from the man when she realized she recognized him to be an important political figure.

            It was best just to forget what you saw in that place, or pretend you didn’t see it at all. Trouble came when you didn’t keep your mouth shut in a place like that.

            Without thinking, she rubbed her hand along her thigh, feeling for the small Llama .45 Minimax that rested in a sleek, black holster, which clung tightly to her upper thigh. It was barely concealed under the hem of the dress she wore. She had been fascinated by the gun when Tom first showed it to her. It was chrome with a satin finish complete with a skeleton grip.

            It felt so natural in her hand, and she could barely take her eyes off the gleaming, chrome barrel when he first produced it. “I don’t need this,” she’d told him while eying the gun.

            “Just in case, a woman can never have enough protection these days.” Tom had said with a slight chuckle.

            Tom Corsi was an ex-cop who turned in his badge when he realized that the law didn’t matter if you could pay your way out of punishment. He’d been a good cop who really wanted to do something about all the crime in the city, but he pissed off the wrong people and spent his time giving out parking tickets rather than chasing the bad guys. He became a munitions dealer and made better money doing it.

            She slowed her pace when she came to the looking cases near the end of the corridor. There was always someone on display. She swallowed hard in sickened fascination, as she watched a masked man in one of the cases. A woman was tied down to a metal table, blindfolded and naked. She moaned and writhed as the man stitched live butterflies onto her bare skin. The butterfly girl, there was a new one every week.

            She knew the man who did the stitching. She asked him why these women allowed him to do that to them. He explained that it was the euphoria of knowing she could beg for mercy all she wanted even though she knew she wouldn’t get it. And once it was all over, she felt as beautiful and free as the butterflies adorning her body. Uh-huh, right.

            He asked her if she’d like to be the next butterfly girl. It would be liberating. Bullshit. She told him she wanted to be the butterfly girl about as much as he probably wanted his genitals bitten off by a Rottweiler. He told her if she ever reconsidered, she’d know where to find him. Not in this lifetime or the next one either.

            Ororo shuddered and ripped her eyes away from the scene. These things were like car wrecks. Horrible to witness, but you couldn’t help looking at it. She walked on, quickly. The sooner she found Stephán Luciano, the sooner she could get the hell out of there. She pushed further down the corridor, stepping into the club itself.

            She stood on a balcony high above the dancing bodies. Pissed off music blared all around her. “Party in the morgue…” she heard a synthetic voice screaming around her. She couldn’t hear much of anything else around the angry bass and unreal beats. Bodies packed together, grinding against one another, moving like one black-clad mass. She guessed she was the only who’d thought to wear red.

            She shrugged and made her way down the stairs. Instead of enjoying the calm, snobbish atmosphere of one of the other areas of The Kurogaisha, Luciano had chosen one of the most depraved. She’d seen him in other areas of The Kurogaisha before and wondered why chose this one as a rendezvous point. Maybe, his curiosity had gotten the better of him. It was his money, though. Who was she to care about how he spent it?

            She sidestepped a rather large man carrying a woman up the stairs. At first, the woman stared up at him wide-eyed, as if she were in a trance. Then, she started screaming like a madwoman, beating his chest, biting, scratching. He lost his grip on her, and she fell to the ground. He jerked her up by her hair, pulling her along, while her limbs thrashed every which way.

            Another lesson she’d learn: If they were kicking and screaming, that probably meant they liked it.

            A quick scan of the crowd didn’t produce Luciano’s face, but then again, there were so many people there that she would need to get closer to the crowd. She continued down the stairs and made her way to the bar. Shinobi was standing at the bar drinking something that glowed bright green. “Shinobi-sama,” she said his way in greeting, nodding her head at him.

            “Haniyasu-hime,” he said mockingly, nodding back at her. She knew he was ridiculing her, and she curled her lip at him in loathing. Pet names, a long-standing tradition with them from the days when he’d taught her Japanese and she’d actually thought he was “charming.”

            “Don’t call me that,” she said disdainfully.

            “Thought this wasn’t your scene,” he said, ignoring her.

            “It’s not. I’m working,” she said. Shinobi nodded at her and ordered another one of those glowing drinks. She almost asked him what it was, but she decided against it. If she asked, she’d want to try it, and it would be just her luck that it was something hard that would knock her on her ass. Whatever it was, it probably wasn’t legal, anyway. Funny she worried about legalities. She ordered a Midori Sour and sipped it.

            She turned her attention back to the room as the paroxysmal beats of the music gradually dawdled and faded into a slow accompanied by a steady thump that set the harmonious pace. “Party in the morgue…” she could hear the words fading into the music. Her eyes examined the crowded room searching for her target. He was still nowhere to be found.

            Someone grabbed her shoulder and turned her around, forcefully. He wore a long, leather Matrix-style coat with a blood red cross emblazoned on the middle of it. She was tall, but he was taller. She had to look up at him to see his dark eyes. “We can do this the easy way, or we can do this the hard way,” he growled at her.

            Ororo cocked her eyebrow at him. She wondered where he’d gotten the idea she was even into any of that rough bondage shit. He was supposed to take that to the back, not in the dance area. “I always liked doing things the hard way,” she said to him.

            She jerked away from him, wrapping her hands around the back of his neck. She brought her knee up into his groin, then jerked his head down and brought her knee up into his nose. She let go of him, grabbing one of his bulky arms and twisting it roughly until she was behind him forcing him to the ground.

            “Touch me again and I will kill you,” she hissed into his ear, pushing him away from her. He scrambled away from her, and she turned back to the bar. Maybe she should’ve worn black. Goddess, she hated this place.

            “He was just being friendly,” Shinobi said beside her. “It’s not nice to be mean to the natives.”

            “Well, you go home in the back with him and let him spank you, then.” Ororo shot at him. She downed the last of her Midori. She turned back toward the crowd, leaning against the bar.

            She scanned the crowd, again, looking for Luciano. He had to be there somewhere. He was supposed to be there, anyway. She hated to think that she was going to have to go deeper into the club. What just happened with the man was the tip of the iceberg. The real action went on in the back rooms. Seeing a woman get butterflies stitched onto her skin was pretty tame when she thought about what went on in the back rooms.

            She would hate to bust into one of the rooms to find him getting the flesh peeled off his back or something equally as revolting. No, she would wait until she saw him in proximity. When the song ended, the crowd thinned a little. People made their way to one of the various bars. Ororo found herself surrounded by sweaty, leather-clad bodies. She pushed away from the bar, trying not to make too much skin-to-skin contact.

            Luciano entered the club, surrounded by his entourage, wearing an expensively tailored suit that accentuated his physical attributes. He wore little jewelry. A small gold chain with a crucifix and a gold ring with his insignia was the most she had ever seen him wear. Sometimes, he would sport a pair of sunglasses in his spiky, black hair.

            Sly, seductive dark eyes peered from beneath impossibly long lashes. A half-cocked smile always played on his lips that had the perfect cupid’s bow going for it. She always thought that was kind of feminine on men, but it worked well for him. She didn’t care how good-looking he was. She hated tardiness, especially when it was on her time.

            Despite Luciano’s youth, he was known as a prolific businessman who could be ruthless to the core when he had to be. He was running his father’s company better than his father had, and everybody knew it. His business ethics were sometimes described as lacking, though. He had nice things, a nice home and plenty of money to throw around when he wanted to, all courtesy of his business sense, though. So, she was sure he didn’t give a damn about “business ethics.”

            He didn’t steal from the poor and give to the rich, and he didn’t steal from the rich and give to the poor. He stole from the rich and gave to himself. He wasn’t Robin Hood, but he was the closet damn thing to him. He had the attitude that many rich, arrogant heirs in his position had. He thought because he had money he was untouchable, thought he could break the rules and get away with it. It was partially true.

            However, he’d gone and made Sebastian Shaw mad. When Sebastian was cross, people had to pay. She didn’t know what he’d done. She knew it had something to do with acquisitions meeting. She hadn’t been present at the time of the meeting. It didn’t take much to get on Sebastian’s bad side when it came to business.

            She watched him walk past her, occupying the largest booth in the corner of the room, ordering the most expensive champagne. Women”and a few brave men”flocked to his table like drones, trying to amuse the man. Ororo knew that by habit he invited many women to join him, but habitually only took one or two home. The scorned few could be found sniffing after his associates like a pack of hungry wolves, licking their wounds of rejection.

            Her eyes locked stubbornly on her target who was wasted no time fondling some red-haired vixen. Ororo took two deep breaths and sauntered toward his table. She walked with calculated steps, adding a little sway to her hips. She felt various hands touch her body as she made her way to him. She would have felt violated if she hadn’t been so determined in her task.

            He looked up when she was a few feet away from his table. She felt a slow, seductive smile cover her face as a teasing hand rested on her hip. She let her eyes take in a slow appraisal of the man. She raised a challenging eyebrow at him as if to say him, “Your move.” He returned the favor, letting his gaze rest on her legs for a moment.

            She felt the muscles in her thighs tense in response. The goddamn gun. She didn’t stop at the table. Instead, she walked to the restroom and took the gun and holster off, hiding it in one of the stalls. Nobody would be stupid enough to walk out with it. She hoped. She could get it tomorrow... or later, if she had the time.

            Luciano’s attention was focused again on the red head from earlier. The woman was almost in his lap, and she was stroking the side of his face licentiously. The woman whispered something in his ear, and he laughed, showing off his delectable dimples. The woman’s breasts were nearly falling out of her shirt as she fawned all over him, and of course, he was enjoying every minute.

            She walked toward his table again, stopping in front of him. He looked up from the woman. “Mr. Luciano, I believe we have business,” she said to him, bluntly.

            “Please, just call me Stephán. Mr. Luciano is my father.” His mouth curled into a flirtatious grin. Cute, she thought to herself. “And you would be Ms. Munroe?”

            “Please, since we’re dropping the formalities, call me Ororo.” She stuck out a hand, expecting a handshake, but he pulled her around the table to his other side, and she heard the red-head make a sound of protest.

            “We need more beautiful women at this table,” he said. So, she was going to have to play this game a little longer than she anticipated. She feigned interest in him, as he talked about himself. He would touch her delicately while they talked. Sometime, he would touch a strand of her hair or let his fingers run lightly along her thigh. She thought he might be the touchy, feely type. She was glad she ditched the gun in the bathroom.

            Finally, she lured him out of The Kurogaisha, back to her limo under the pretense that they needed to go to Shaw Enterprises to sign the papers he needed. “Can’t business wait?” he asked once they were inside, eyeing her.

            “You know how much Mr. Shaw hates waiting,” she said with a tsk.

            He laughed derisively and said something mildly amusing in regards to Sebastian’s impatience, and she laughed, the top of her dress shifting strategically, allowing him to catch an appetizing curve of her breast. He tried to move closer to her, but she placed one stiletto-ed foot in his chest pushing him back against the seat of the limo. He looked up her the length of her leg hungrily, removing the heel from foot, kissing the top of her foot, gingerly.

            She proffered him her other leg, and he slipped her other heel from her foot, as if it were a glass slipper. She moved across the limo, straddling his hips. Her dress rode up her thighs, and his hands disappeared beneath the soft material, clasping her legs firmly. “How about a kiss?” she asked him, smiling darkly, lowering her lips to his.

”””


            Ororo unlocked the door to her apartment, immediately letting her hair down. She loved the relaxing atmosphere or her apartment. She’d decorated it herself, using earth tones and tribal themes. It was nice to come home to after a long day, such as now. She couldn’t wait to get in the tub and wash away the grimy feel of the Blue room.

            She walked into her bedroom and threw the gun on her bed. She’d gone back and got it after she did the job. It hadn’t been messy, and she had the time. She hadn’t even fired it”a pity. She never knew exactly how she was going to assassinate someone until she was face to face with him or her. It was part of the thrill. She was always prepared, though.

            She pushed the play button on her answering machine, shedding articles of clothing, as she walked around her apartment. She walked to her bathroom, lighting the candles that surrounded her tub, as she half-listened to her messages. She ran her fingers over the smooth porcelain of the tub before turning on the water and filling the tub.

            She loved the antique, claw-footed tub. She found it at someone’s yard sale for next to nothing. She restored it herself, polishing the porcelain until it shone, replacing the rusted fixtures with fancy golden ones. The tub was monstrous, large enough for two people to fit in comfortably, but she mostly used it alone.

            She walked into her living room, nude, and turned on her sound system, and Mozart flowed through the apartment. She hummed to herself as she walked to her kitchen, grabbing a bottle of her favorite wine and a glass. Jean’s voice filled her apartment, and Ororo paused in front of the answering machine, mouthing Jean’s words. She knew all of Jean’s messages by heart.

            “God! All I ever get is your answering machine, Ororo. Are you ever at home, anymore? We haven’t seen you in forever, Ororo. When are you coming home?” Jean asked, her voice rising just a bit. Home. Ororo snorted to herself. The mansion hadn’t been home to her in quite some time.

            “But nowhere is home,” Ororo said in response to Jean’s question.

            She walked back to the bathroom, placing her glass and the bottle of wine on the stand by the tub. She lowered herself smoothly into the tub, the water barely rippled. She sighed and poured herself a glass of the blush wine, leaning her head back against the tub. The bubbles in her bath tickled her skin, and she smiled slightly. It was simple pleasures like these she enjoyed the most.

            The phone rang, and she turned her head to look at it. She didn’t really want to answer it, but it could’ve been Sebastian wanting to know Mr. Luciano’s status. She could’ve just ignored it with the excuse that she turned the ringer off, but she knew she wouldn’t. She reached for the phone she kept on the stand, putting it to her ear.

            “Hello?” she breathed into the phone.

            “Miss me?” the deep voice on the other end said.

            She felt the first tingling of want in her stomach. She flexed her toes in the water as she placed her glass on the stand, but she couldn’t resist just a little roll of her eyes at Victor’s greeting. “Yes, I’m fine, Victor. Thanks for asking. How are you?” she said with a throaty, sexy chuckle.

            Victor Creed was a fellow co-worker. He didn’t work at Shaw Enterprises. He wasn’t cut out for that kind of work, but he did do Sebastian’s dirty work better than anyone else she knew. Considering the memo she’d sent out earlier, she would say that Victor had been very successful in persuading RJK Enterprises they did want the merger.

            She wouldn’t say she was emotionally attached to any man, hadn’t been for a long time. Victor was the closest it got, and she definitely wasn’t attached to him. She loved someone once, foolishly. Even when the relationship hit a rough patch, she loved him. Their relationship suffered because of the secrets he kept from her, and she paid dearly for his deception, losing everything she considered truly important in her life.

            That was a long time ago, though, but revenge still weighed heavy on her mind.

            “I had a job tonight, a Stephán Luciano,” she continued, waiting for what she knew would come next.

            “Did ya fuck him?” Victor asked.

            “Yes,” she lied, closing her eyes. She never slept with any of her targets. She may tease them, but she never let it go any further than that. This was another part of the thrill, though, telling Victor that she’d slept with her hits when she didn’t. Victor knew that, but it was just a wicked game they played with one another.

            “You lie.”

            “How can you be so sure?” she asked coyly. She ran her free hand through her damp hair. “You’re at home. I’m here. For all you know, I could have fucked him right here.”

            “Only one way to find out.”

            “What if I won’t let you in?”

            “I’ll get in,” he said, confidently. She had no doubt that he would, even if he had to tear the door down. Though, she hoped he wouldn’t. “An’ when I do, I’ll show you that your body belongs to me.”

            “Is that all you think about?” she asked, trying to sound exasperated.

            “Yeah, and it’s all you think about, too.” And with that he hung up. She turned off the phone and returned it to the stand, shaking her head to herself. She soaped her body, slowly. Sex with Victor was never about emotions. There were no fireworks exploding, or tears of loving joy, or anything sugary-sweet like that. It was purely an animalistic act”dirty, rough, and satisfying. She didn’t believe he had a tender bone in his body.

            She could imagine his big body pressing into hers, one of his large hands wrapped around her wrists holding them high above her head, the taste of his salty skin against her taste buds, the way he made her feel completely helpless as his fingers dug into her skin. She could see his hand pressed tight against her stomach, while the other gripped her shoulder, on her knees, him pulling her into him”fierce in his ardor, while she trembled in her ecstasy.

            She could feel his mouth on her skin, paining and pleasuring, while he thrust and thrust and… Warmth nestled in her stomach, her eyes nearly crossing at just the thought, and she felt any resolve she had left going down the drain. Sometimes, she thought she might like something more besides good sex, not with Victor, though. He just wasn’t relationship material.

            She’d met some good guys, but they never did anything for her. They were so uninspired, unable to move her the way she needed to be moved. Maybe, she’d been around rough men so long that she could no longer appreciate the good guys. She sat straight up in the tub when the phone rang again. She picked it up lazily.

            “Ororo, is that you?”

            Ororo smiled. “No, I’m her evil twin, ‘Ro.”

            “Well, you’ll do, too.” Jean paused and sighed dramatically into the phone. Wait for it, Ororo said to herself, tapping her foot against the tub. “Where in the hell have you been?”

            “Work keeps me busy.” Ororo said, feeling a small twinge of guilt. That wasn’t exactly a lie, though. Work did keep her busy. Jean just thought she worked as a secretary for some company.

            “I have been worried sick. Why haven’t you called me?” Jean asked.

            “I’ve been working late a lot lately.” Another twinge of guilt. That wasn’t a lie, either. She had been working a lot lately, but she could have called Jean. She knew how Jean liked to worry.

            “No excuse not to call your best friend to let her know you’re not dead.” Jean said, as Ororo drained the tub of the cooling water and refilled it.

            “I’m not dead.”

            “How considerate of you for the update, considering.” Jean said dryly. “How about lunch tomorrow? It’s been a while since we spent any time together.”

            Ororo had her work, and Jean had her missions. Sometimes, they didn’t see each other for months at a time. It would be nice to spend some time with Jean. “Sure, I usually lunch at around noon, and when I lunch, I lunch. So don’t come expecting a thirty minute pig-out, a quick hug, and a goodbye. I shop, I ramble, I eat, and then, I consider going back to work.”

            Jean laughed. “Your boss has to hate you.”

            “Probably, but I believe he hates everyone, anyway.” Ororo said, only half-joking. The hairs on her neck stood on edge, the familiar feeling of being watched. She turned her head toward the door, slowly. She chewed on the inside of her lip, trying to hide a smile when she saw Victor. He’d pick the lock, effortlessly. She hadn’t expected anything less. What she was more concerned about was how he’d gotten past the doorman.

            He walked toward her, purposely. She was aware that Jean was still talking, but she didn’t hear anything he was saying. She only watched as Victor stooped beside the tub, his hand dipping below the water. Sharp fingernails grazed across the inside of her thigh, the water stinging the shallow scrapes. His fingers followed the same path again, soothing, inching just a bit closer to ground zero.

            “I’ll see you tomorrow, Jean,” she said in a quiet voice. “There is someone here.”

            “Wait! Where are we meeting?”

            “I don’t care.” Ororo said, absently.

            “Come by the mansion. We’ll lunch here.”

            The mansion. Great, good, that was fine with her. “Yeah, okay. I have to go,” she wondered if it was possible to send Jean telepathic messages from this distance because Jean was not getting the point. She quickly said her goodbyes and hung up the phone.

            “Who was that?” he asked.

            She sank a little lower in the tub, pushing against his hand. “My other man,” she said before sinking lower in the water until nothing but her eyes peered at him over the water. She saw the disbelief in his eyes, and she smiled wickedly.

            “Cock tease.”
”””


Author’s Notes: We’re getting to the RoLo. No worries. This has been in the works for quite some time, and I decided now was a good time to really concentrate on it. This is a mixture of different X-verses, as well as my own creation, but I got most of the Ororo’s sass from Ultimate. This follows no continuity whatsoever, and I’ve written a more cynical, hardened Storm. And yes, there will be a reason for that.

Although everyone has their powers here, I still consider this very much AU because I have melded and meshed until I was satisfied. If you’ve read my story Red & Violet on ffnet, you already know who Haniyasu is, but if not, I’ve explained everything further down. Special thanks to Spike this chapter for his question and answer session with me about bondage, even though I didn’t use half of what he told me.

The Blue room and the butterfly girl was inspired by a short story I read. I forgot what it’s called, but the story stayed imprinted in my mind because of how chilling it was.

“Party in the Morgue” is a song by Thee Undatakerz from the Blade: Trinity OST.

Chapter title comes from the Rob Zombie song “Spookshow Baby.”

Kurogaisha translates to “Black Company” in Japanese.

The suffix ““sama” is used to refer to someone of a higher rank. It can also be used by someone in the case of addressing someone for whom you have great respect or even romantic interest. (Source: animeinfo.org, because they explain it so much better than me)

Haniyasu-hime is the Japanese goddess of the earth. She ruled the earth with her husband. Together, they punished. They were responsible for the seasons while sustaining life on earth. The suffix “-hime” means princess in Japanese. So, basically, Shinobi was making a none-too-subtle jab at Ororo’s weather powers.

The quote on revenge used in my summary is courtesy of Samuel Johnson.

This story was written under the premise that Ororo only lived at the mansion to learn to control her power when she was younger, but left shortly thereafter. I can’t tell you why now, as that would spoil the story. So, basically, she doesn’t know Logan at this point in my AU. We’re getting there. Pinky promise.




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