Summary: When Chloe hears about the 'mutant cure' being offered in New York she heads there immediately, hoping that it will work on her. When the building she's in explodes she meets her dark savior John Allerdyce, with secrets of his own.
When Chloe’d heard about the supposed mutant ‘cure’ that they were offering in New York she’d been hesitant to get up her hopes again after the crushing blow of disappointment her last ‘cure’ had given her. She’d not only remained a mutant, but she’d nearly gotten killed because she’d wanted to be normal, and if it hadn’t been for Clark…
Chloe closed her eyes and breathed in a deep breath, entering the building where they were administering the cure. She’d taken a chance and taken the first plane to New York, joined the long line of people, of mutants, waiting their turn to enter the building and become normal. She’d watched the people as they exited the building, some of them were beaming with happiness and liberation, and others were crying in shame for turning their backs on what they truly were just to conform.
The blonde didn’t have that sort of problem. She was human, she hadn’t been born this way like the others. All of her problems were the fault of some stupid green rocks. She wasn’t turning her back on what she truly was, she was only righting a wrong that’d been done to her. Righting the wrong that the meteor rocks had done to her.
As she sat on one of the beds as a nurse prepared her for the injection, Chloe looked out of the windows at the protestors outside.
There were tons of mutants with signs saying “EMBRACE YOURSELF—NOT THE ‘CURE’!” and other inspirational slogans that caused her to wince and look away. A couple of the mutants had been swayed by those screaming for them not to take the cure, and had run away from the line--each person who left was received by cheers from the mutants protesting on the sidelines.
Chloe had paid them no mind and had continued on her way to the building. She closed her eyes as the nurse appeared with the needle, praying to all holy that she wasn’t just making a big mistake. She wasn’t a normal mutant, she didn’t know if the ‘cure’ would work on her--or if it’d do something else to her…but she knew that she’d never be able to live with herself if she didn’t take this chance.
She ignored the ring of her cell-phone, knowing that it was Clark. She knew that if he found out what she was doing he’d stop her--he’d probably breeze in here, kidnap her, and stop her from taking the cure. Her best friend couldn’t understand her fear of her powers, he was actually relieved that nothing could kill her anymore, and that she could heal, but Chloe kept waiting for the other shoe to fall.
She loved Clark. She wouldn’t allow herself to go insane like all of the other meteor freaks and make Clark go through having to kill her--he wouldn’t survive that--not emotionally. She wouldn’t do that to her best friend and the only man she’d ever truly loved. She’d do her best to eliminate any threat to his happiness--even if that threat was her.
I’m doing this for you Clark, and for me, but especially for you.
The sting of the needle piercing her skin caused her to bite down on her lip to keep from whimpering, but the sting of the needle was nothing compared to the burning of the liquid that it injected within her veins.
Chloe screamed and threw her head back in agony, shocking the nurse, and yet the guards that’d rushed to restrain Chloe never got to touch her as suddenly the whole place was consumed in a burst of flames that incinerated everyone around the blonde. The fire lathered her body like hungry tongues, and yet other than warm her on what was a very chilly day, and burn away all her clothes, it did nothing.
But the pain of the serum inside of her caused Chloe to wither in pain as she was suspended in the flames of the collapsed building, which had exploded violently.
And suddenly all was black.
But not before she saw the form of someone in the inferno with her, watching her in awe.
Not much in this world surprised John Allerdyce, but the scream that’d echoed throughout the building the second he’d sent the large flame towards the building had. The fact that someone was screaming in agony before he’d even killed them hadn’t bothered him. No, his work in the Brotherhood had hardened him against frailties…what’d surprised him was that he’d recognized the scream.
That was why the moment he’d disappeared in the crowd, lost the pathetic Bobby, he’d found his way through the back and into the fire that would never harm its creator. He knew that it was too hot--that no one could come close and not get incinerate--he’d been really pissed when he’d cast the flame ball and it showed. He knew that he would have enough time to search, but he really hadn’t needed time at all.
The moment he’d entered the fire he’d sensed her, and he’d followed his instincts until he was in the heart of the inferno, awed gaze falling upon the naked body of the woman who’d been haunting his dreams since the moment his mutation had become active. It was just like in his dreams, her form was nubile and creamy, her hair golden and floating around her as flames circles around her body, as if offering a living bed to the sleeping beauty.
Hearing the sirens of the fire trucks heading in that direction, and knowing that his time was short, John had pulled off his trench coat and manipulated the flames to bring her to him and hold her upright in time for him to slip on his coat onto her to hide her nakedness and then the flames deposited her into his arms and she was heavier than he’d expected, but he could manage.
He’d exited through the back, as everyone watched the burning building in front, and he hadn’t been caught.
With no where else to go--for he didn’t want to take her to Magneto--John went to the small, dingy and run down apartment he’d been renting since he’d left the X-Men to join the Brotherhood. He’d lowered the girl from his dreams on his bed and suddenly realized how dirty the place seemed, but he refused to clean up for this girl. She was just a girl who’d dreamwalked in his every dream since he was around thirteen, and when she awoke he was going to chew her ear off about it and tell her, no matter how gorgeous she was, that no one messed with St. John Allerdyce--much less with Pyro.
Then again, it’d been hot to see how his flames had trailed up her body like hungry tongues…
Shaking his head, John sighed and sat down on the edge of the bed and watched as the mysterious, unnamed mutant girl with the blonde hair whimpered and turned, the sleeve of his coat rode up and John shot up when he saw the bruise on her inner arm.
She’d taken the cure…
And yet she’d managed to survive his fire?
That should have been impossible!
If she’d taken the cure she should be any normal little human…no human would have survived that…not without major burns…and yet this girl’s skin was the pink of health…
Does this mean that the cure really doesn’t work? John once more collapsed down on the bed, kicking off his combat boots and pulling out the belt from his pants, all the while looking down at the young woman lying semi-naked on his bed, groaning in obvious pain in her sleep as she tossed and turned. But I saw Mystique change right in front of my eyes…
No, the cure worked.
So maybe, this dream-interfering mutant is immune to its effects…
That was great! That meant that a good percentage of the mutants that’d betrayed their heritage, their gift, and had taken the cure today--some of them mightn’t have been ‘cured’ at all!
He made it passed her and laid down on the other side of the bed, his side of the bed, and frowned as he decided to keep his pants on. He didn’t know how this woman was going to react when she awoke, naked on a stranger’s bed, her last memories of fire and death, so he decided that it was best for him if he kept his clothes on…not that he wanted to reassure her or anything…he kept his clothes on in case he needed to get up in a hurry and subdue her if need be. They were going to talk, and he was going to get her to explain to him why she’d targeted him all those years and hadn’t relented since then.
Up till last night he’d had a dream of her beckoning him, naked in the midst of hell itself.
Turning so that he was looking only at her, John told himself that he needed to keep her in his sight at all times. She might be awake and planning something already…she might have planned this all to make him bring her to his home…she might be a part of the X-Men…she might have joined the school after he’d left…she…she had a very pretty face.
“No…” She whimpered, fear in her features as she began to cry in sleep. “Please, don’t kill me! I—I didn’t ask to be like this!”
John winced and looked her over.
Had some anti-mutants fanatics tried to kill her? Was that why she’d taken the cure?
To be safe?
“No, Clark, please, don’t look at me like that…I’m Chloe…I’m still the same Chloe you’ve always known…please don’t look at me differently now that I’m one of those freaks.” She whimpered pathetically, obviously heartbroken.
John clenched his fists.
So, obviously this Clark had played a role in her deciding to get rid of her powers as well…whatever they truly were. Whoever Clark was, he meant something to her…to Chloe…and it was because of his reaction to her finally telling him the truth about her being a mutant--a freak--that drove her to join that line and take the cure…the cure that didn’t work on her.
Well, he obviously is some human who doesn’t deserve her if he can’t understand how whatever her mutation is hasn’t made her a ‘freak’ but a superior being--a ‘goddess among bugs’.
He smirked as he thought about how Magneto had used that line on him to get him to join him and Mystique and the Brotherhood.
It was true.
They truly were godlike compared to the insignificant and weak human beings who feared them.
“It’s me…” She continued to sniffle. “It’s Chloe…”
John hesitated before reaching out and touching a lock of her hair, surprised to find it silky and smooth to the touch, and not at all dry from the heat on the inferno she’d been bathed in not an hour ago. As he realized that she was in a deep sleep, which was probably the working of her mutation, and wouldn’t wake up, he grew bolder and sunk his hand into her hair, enjoying the feel of her short tresses, wishing that they were longer through.
Shifting closer without realizing he’d done so, John looked at her face, finally able to see up close and personal the flame vixen who'd tormented his dreams since he was a young boy. She was even more beautiful in real life, though he had to admit that there was something ethereal about the way the flames had reflected off of her skin in the burning building in his dreams.
He tried out the name, deciding that it was acceptable, but it was a human name. Did she have a mutant one? She must--every mutant had a name they went by in the mutant circles.
He wondered what her mutant name was…it’d have to do with her powers of course--and if she could dream-walk then…
He shivered at all of the girly, corny names he could think of that had to do with dreams…
Then again, maybe she doesn’t Dream-Walk…maybe the fact that you’ve been dreaming of her has nothing to do with her.
And that possibility intrigued him.
Looking at her ruby lips, John licked his and gulped before he closed his eyes and pressed his lips to hers curiously…and suddenly different images assaulted his mind.
“I don’t want Clark to come in between us.” A pretty dark haired girl with obvious oriental heritage announced tearfully and yet with determination to a younger Chloe.
The younger Chloe, who sported a shorter, funkier haircut and a tremulous smile, nodded. “You know what Lana? You’re right. No guy, not even Clark Kent, should get in between us. We were like sisters before this all happened.”
The dark haired girl nodded. “And now that he ran away, and neither of us know where he is, we can both forget about him and try get our friendship back on track. He didn’t deserve either of us.”
A guilty expression crossed Chloe’s eyes when the girl Lana said that neither of them knew where this Clark was, but her smile was genuine by the time Lana had finished what she was saying. “I missed being your friend, Lana.”
Lana smiled. “I missed you too, Chlo.”
John tightened his hold on her hair and whimpered at the way his lips burnt him in a way fire couldn’t as another vision assaulted his gaze.
Chloe was naked and strapped down to a surgical table as men tested her, experimented on her, extracted her DNA, and she tried to scream for help, scream for them to stop. She screamed because she was so terrified--screamed because it hurt.
Her pain raced through him and Pyro closed his eyes, the hand in her hair now clenching the golden tresses painfully as fire exploded in his fists at the anger that humans had experimented on her. They’d hurt her.
Were these the ones she’d been begging not to kill her in her dreams?
He didn’t even realize that even now, as he held her hair with a flamed fist, that she wasn’t catching afire--wasn’t even acting as if she was experiencing any discomfort.
And he didn’t notice because all of a sudden he was transported to yet another of her memories.
“You have to do this Clark.” Chloe whispered, looking frightened as the apocalypse seemed to be taking place around them as people ran and screamed, a large truck protruding from the wall behind them.
“I don’t want to leave you, Chlo.” The man, Clark Kent, looked down at her in desperation. “What if something happens to you when I’m not here to take care of you? To protect you?”
She looked up at him with love. “Clark. You can’t save everyone. And right now, you’re needed somewhere else. I’ll be fine.”
He looked at her torn before nodding and beginning to turn around.
“But just in case.” And suddenly Chloe rushed to Clark and threw herself in his arms, kissing him reverently, pouring her devotion and love into that kiss, before slightly pulling away from the stunned young man. “I didn’t want to die without ever knowing what it was like to kiss you.”
John gasped and tore his lips from hers, breaking the connection, the images disappearing.
“Who are you?” He asked her although he knew that she was in a deep sleep and couldn’t hear him, much less answer. “What are your abilities?” John continued the pointless questioning. “Why have I been dreaming of you all these years if you’ve been so preoccupied with that guy?” And when she didn’t answer, Pyro just sighed, forcing himself to cal down. No use getting mad at the unconscious girl. “Magneto’s going to be so pissed that I haven’t informed him of how things went.”
He reluctantly pulled his hand from her hair and laid on his back, looking up at the ceiling. “Not that I answer to him or anything. But when he gets pissed he goes on and on and on with his lectures and it’s boring as hell. Really, the guy is Professor Xavier but with a little more edge and a really dorky-looking helmet. And I kinda think he has a crush on the Professor, but you definitely didn’t hear that from me, okay?”
John grinned at himself, turning his head slightly to the side so he could look at his sleeping companion, who’d finally gone silent and whose face was now serene in sleep…all bad dreams forgotten. “Yeah. You’re right. We should rest.”
And with a cheeky grin, John closed his eyes and fell asleep surprisingly quick considering the fact that he usually couldn’t sleep.
Returning to consciousness, she groaned and placed her hand to her throbbing head, and paused, looking up at a ceiling she didn’t recognize. She jolted into a sitting position on the bed and gasped as she looked around a bedroom she didn’t recognize…a bedroom that was in severe need of cleaning, and it smelt slightly of humidity.
Where am I?
Feeling chilly, she looked down at her body, her eyes widened when she realized that she was only wearing a man’s trench coat--with nothing underneath. Pulling the lapels around her tighter, she blushed brightly and blinked when she noticed that there was an arm resting comfortably and possessively around her stomach.
Hello. Who are you attached to?
She was afraid to turn and find out the answer to the question, but when she heard a male murmuring something like a complaint in his sleep and trying to draw her closer, she gulped and turned to him.
Her eyes widened even further when she got a good look at the face and body that accompanied that arm.
Well, gorgeous was too much of feminine word for a man that was all male…
Who are you?
She frowned, noticing that he had on all of his clothes while she was only wearing what as obviously his trench coat. Why was he all clothed and she was naked?
Who am I?
That, of course, was also a very important question.
I hope you’re not my brother.
Because if he was…then the thoughts that’d been racing through her head from the moment she’d seen him would all be so very wrong!
He groaned and his eyes opened and focused on her immediately. “You’re awake.”
Okay, so whoever the hunk was, he wasn’t acting all nervousy as if their sleeping like this should be weird. So that gave her the idea that they’d slept together before, probably naked as well, with him touching her.
Maybe they were lovers? Maybe they lived together in this…uh…dump?
“Who am I?”
He frowned at her and then suddenly sat up. “Are you telling me that you don’t remember?”
Her curious and somewhat nervous gaze went to his ring finger and then down at hers. No ring. So they weren’t married—then again, he didn’t look like the marrying-type anyway.
The guy snorted. “Well, if that don’t beat it all. You’re amnesic.”
“What’s your name? Is this your place?” She asked, amazed at how tranquil she was despite the fact that she was almost naked in bed with a man. Then again, she was almost sure this guy was her lover, so there really shouldn’t be anything to fear, right? “What’s my name? Was I in an accident? Is that why I can’t remember anything? How long have we been together?”
The handsome young man looked at her in slight confusion, and then he looked surprised, and he looked away from her, hiding his expression from her and there was a moment’s silent before he finally answered one of her questions. “Uh, your name is Chloe.”
“Chloe?” She asked, and it seemed right.
He nodded. “And my name is John.”
“John.” Chloe parroted, wondering why she felt somewhat awkward saying the name, yet pushed that away. “How long have we known each other? When did we get together? What happened to me?”
“You--you were involved in an accident. You were somewhere you weren’t meant to be and you were almost killed.” John announced slowly, still not looking at her in her face. “Your mutation saved you.”
Her heart froze. “My—my mutation?”
“Yes Chloe.” John turned to look at her, his eyes intense as he grabbed her hand in a quick a movement and squeezed, his hand suddenly catching on fire. “Your mutation.”
For a second she was about to scream and try pull her hand from his, but then she realized that she wasn’t feeling any pain, only a pleasant warmth. Her eyes grew wide as she carefully rubbed her thumb against his flame-covered skin and then she looked up into his face. “How--?”
“I think you have a protective mutation, but I think that you might have another.”
“You think?” Shouldn’t he know this?
“You, uh, never actually showed me what your power was.”
So maybe they were a new couple then? But he’d trusted her with his secret, he was a fire-starter, shouldn’t she have given him the same confidence and shared hers? Whatever it was? “How--how will I know what my power is? Protection? I’m confused.”
John was silent for a moment. “I can take you to someone who can help you with that. His name is Magneto.”
She frowned at the name. “Is he a mutant as well?” When John nodded, she hugged herself. “Okay then, if you think he’ll help me.” Chloe paused. “John? What’s my last name?”
He froze again, pausing before answering. “I don’t know. You never told me.” He looked down at their joined hands. “All I know is that you’re name is Chloe, and I took you out of the building in which they were giving out a cure to all mutations. All I really know about you is that you went to get the cure because some anti-mutants experimented on you, you were scared, and because someone named Clark that you used to love was disgusted with you when he found out that you were a mutant.”
She felt her heart hurt at his words…so obviously something in her as recognizing what he said. “And you? Who are you to me?”
He lifted his gaze from their hands to her eyes, and the heat there burnt her when he flames didn’t. “Your savior.”
Chloe shivered. Those eyes told no lies. “Why am I naked?”
He suddenly grinned mischievously. “The fire in the building I took you out of was so hot your clothes burnt off. Lovely view, but I thought you’d prefer my trench coat.”
“My clothes burnt off but my protective mutation kept me safe?” She suddenly grinned, ignoring the fact that he’d just said that he’d enjoyed seeing her naked body. “Why would I ever want to get rid of that? Stupid human or not? That is…amazing.”
“Exactly.” John’s grin grew. “Come. I’ll take you to Magneto.”
She nodded and helped him tug her to her feet. “Uh, just one thing though. Before we go see this guy, can I get some clothes?”
He grinned, nodding as he reached down for his pants. “We’ll stop by the Salvation Army on our way there. Magneto will take care of you afterwards. And Callisto, she will be able to tell exactly what kind of mutation you have. I hate the chick, but she has her uses.”
Chloe hugged herself as she watched him push his feet into his shoes and put back on his belt. He was gorgeous, and apparently he was an-almost-stranger to her, but he’d saved her, he’d taken her to his own home, dump or not, and he’d taken care of her.
A warm feeling welled in her heart.
He turned and smirked at her, extending his hand. “Let’s go. Magneto waits for no one.”
The blonde looked at the hand offered, feeling as if her decision now would change her world forever.
She looked up at his quizzical expression and then reached for his hand and squeezed, decision made. “Let’s go.”