mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Jean regenerates in the cold waters of the lake. She won't wake up alone, this time.

"Are you okay?" The woman seemed concerned but surprisingly calm, considering that she'd just pulled a leather-clad woman out of a lake.

Jean peered at her. "Do I know you? I think I know you." Her voice was still raspy, but now the woman was close enough to hear.

"Yes, you do. Are you in pain? Cold? Hungry? I've got a fire going." She took Jean's smooth hand in her own calloused one and pulled her to her feet. "Come on."


Jean awakens in Alkali Lake, but this time she's not alone. In it's own way, I think this is one of the scariest stories I've read in this fandom, and I really like this take on Mystique.

Hide a Hundred Girls in Your Hair
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Great pencilwork. The subtle glow on the Phoenix shape works really well.


X-Men: The Last Stand: Phoenix by *daekazu on deviantART
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Jean Grey gets called to the hospital to help them deal with an injured and under arrest Toad.

I can feel him waking up from here. I can feel the blind panic, can practically smell the crackling ozone. He's reliving the lightning strike. His heart is racing, which is not good in his condition, since his heart's already taken a hell of a beating. He's lucky to be alive. Do the right thing, Jean. He needs to calm down. There's three police officers, two orderlies, and a nurse in here with me. Worst case scenario, someone's spraying solvent in my face in thirty seconds.

After X1, Jean Grey is called in to treat one of the Brotherhood members who tried to kill her. An interesting meditation on how the X-Men and the authorities, as well as Jean on a personal level, might deal with a mutant like Toad.

Witness for the Defense
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: In the aftermath of a war, four survivors struggle to hold on to their identities in the face of a society meant to destroy them.

This is our third Ceremony, but my stomach still twists into little hard knots when the fighting begins. The helplessness is worst-- the knowledge that control of my body is again taken from my hands. We're china dolls on a shelf, waiting to be passed to the winners here today. If I'm lucky, he'll be a friend. A protector. If I'm not lucky... A month can be a very long time.

It is on these mornings when I think of Logan the most. He was built to fight. He lives for it. That's not the way Scott works. All he ever wanted was a family and a safe place for them to live in peace...


In the aftermath of mutant registration, lovers have been separated and mutants must resort to desperate measures to gain any measure of safety. It's going to be a long journey for Logan if he's ever going to get Rogue back - in more ways than one. Meanwhile, Scott and Jean have a hard to choice to make between freedom and security for their child. A harrowing novella that doesn't shy away from the realities of living in a post-registration dystopia, but also shows how strong these characters are.

la bas: song of the drowned
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: All actions have consequences.

The faint smell of decay in the mansion is getting stronger with each day. He's learning to live with it, but he'll never get used to it. Stagnant water, old blood, singed flesh.

He tries not to stare when she drifts past in the corridors, to not look at her grey skin. To meet the fiery emptiness of her eyes with love, instead of letting his gaze slide away in revulsion. He never quite manages.


After X2, Jean comes back ... wrong. Effectively creepy, and I love the characterization of Scott here, faced with the thing his fiance has become.

Bring Out Your Dead
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Does she dare disturb the universe? X3 wasn't the first time Jean Grey wrestled with her powers. Set about 10 years before the first movie.

"He doesn't dream," I realize, and at the same moment I say it out loud. Not, as some would say, because my impulsive temper matches my red hair, but merely because I do not always remember the line between thought and speech.

Vail freezes, mid-drone and pivots slowly to look at me. "Miss Grey. Perhaps you would like to lead us today, with your vast expertise in the subject." His sarcasm drips, for all to hear, but no one else witnesses the fantasy in which he pushes me against the wall and reaches under my labcoat. He thinks that I would cry and kick, at first, but quickly surrender. This is what women like me really want.

He has an active imagination.


A portrait of Jean in medical school, struggling with her abilities and with the difference between thought and action. I love the characterization here, and it's great to see Cecelia Reyes turn up in the movieverse.

Phoenix: Lovesong (The J. Alfred Prufrock Mix)
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: "Fire gods. They always have to make trouble of one sort or another.”

Bobby Drake held two things, one tightly and one loosely, in his hands. The first was a postcard, No Rest for the Wicker printed at the bottom of a black-and-white photograph showing a long line of people snaking through a field in front of a set of wicker furniture. He had both sides memorized. The back had a twenty-three cent stamp (greenish, white profile of Washington, ponytail and all), slapped crookedly into the box in the upper right-hand corner; it had a postmark stamped half into the message on the left side, dated five days before today from Parkersburg, West Virginia. The letters were scrawled (typical), slanting up. The pen had died a few words in, and the note changed color.

Magneto called Pyro a god among insects, but if he remembered his comparative mythology he would know that fire gods always cause the most trouble. I love the use of the legends here, and the deft characterization of John as well.

The Agnihotri
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Scott Summers makes a compromise.

What she said to him later was yes, she found Logan attractive. She didn't love him, but that was beside the point. She couldn't sleep with him, because he'd never give her up, and she didn't want him forever, only for a night. Pressed up to Scott's back in bed while she said it. But he could do it. Meaning Scott. He should, maybe. One of them should.

Jean has a novel solution to the tension between Scott and Logan and herself. This is both hot and sweet, and I like the insights into the reasons Scott and Jean love each other.

All of the Animals
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Agent Xavier)
Summary: What might have happened had X1 not ended so well.

The calendar in the box room still read October 2010, but she knew it was later than that. She had no mirror, because she'd thrown it out of the window an autumn ago, or maybe a spring ago, and judged her age by the rough and lined hands that she would stare at as they tried to grip at her fork and knife.

She asked her nurses which year it was, but they never told her.


A poignant story about what might have happened to Jean - and, by extension, to everyone else - if things hadn't gone quite so well at the Statue of Liberty. Full of beautiful details that make it sing, from the Jell-O cups to the view from her tiny window.

The Box Room
mutatismutandis: Emma Frost (White Queen)
Summary: "In her more reflective moments, she wondered if she had a self-destructive streak running through her." AU, or not...?

The cigarette was good. She hadn't smoked since right before medical school; somehow it didn't seem appropriate, then.

It was certainly appropriate now. Post-coital cigarette number two. Jean glanced down at her sleeping bedmate, sprawled out on the dingy bed like he owned it, one muscular arm flung over her legs. She sat on the bed, back against the headboard, cigarette in hand. A plume of smoke rose from the tip like a carcinogenic ghost. She sucked down another drag. The burn in her throat spread through her body, infusing every cell with the delicious bite of nicotine. It was like she'd never quit; it felt like her body had gone into a long dormancy, brought back to life only when she inhaled the hot smoke.


After Alkali Lake, Jean Grey falls into more than one bad habit. Beautifully written and intriguingly ambiguous - it's labled AU with a question mark for a reason.

Color of Ashes, Color of Fire
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: It takes some time to feel at home.

Her jaw was tight with concentration. It seemed to Hank that Jean always looked tense. It was nothing new; she’d been an extraordinarily tense twelve year old. Now she was clenching her teeth like a stevedore, not like someone reading in a comfortable library on a Saturday evening. Hank wondered if she was interested in the journal in front of her at all, or driven solely by duty. Her hair haloed around her face, glowing in the soft light of the green-shaded lamp on the desk, but she looked like a crusader. Jean d’Arc.

I need to get laid, Hank thought to himself. I’m going to find a cure for cancer before I get laid.


Hank is trying to lose his virginity, and Jean is surprisingly helpful. A story about tolerance, sex and home comforts of all kinds. I love how wonderfully opaque the Jean Grey in this story is, like an iceberg with two-thirds below the water. Hank, by contrast, is endearingly easy to figure out.

Comfort Zone
mutatismutandis: Emma Frost (White Queen)
Summary: Scott and Jean have a complicated relationship. Pyro has regrets.

"Why were you so worried when I went into Cerebro?"

His tone is almost chipper when he answers. "I thought you couldn't handle it. I was wrong." There's no pride in him admitting his error and he prides himself on that in the backburner of his brain, where she pokes around like a child putting a fork in an electrical socket, looking for where he loves her.

"So you don't have faith in me?" Jean is teasing, but the Phoenix wants to

know


The parallels between John and Jean never really struck me before reading this, but it turns out that they have a few things in common. An intertwined pair of stories about love and identity.

Disassociation
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Spring fever hits the school and Jean has just the solution.

"The ground rules are," Jean said, "you must spend all waking hours that are not spent in class together. However, there will be no sleeping together." Groans mixed with nervous laughter. "You must do your daily activities together. And by together we mean the same activity, not just in the same room. If one of you wants to watch television, both of you watch television. If one of you wants to play ping-pong, both of you play."

"You're going to learn about partnership and compromise," Scott said. "Or else you're going to drive each other nuts." That got genuine laughter.

"Can I ask which you and Dr. Grey have done?" St. John piped up from the back of the room.

"No," Jean and Scott said at the same time.


When the senior students at Xavier's are hopelessly distracted by hormones, Jean has a brilliant idea to cure them of it: make them all pretend to be married for a week. Funny and insightful, and I love the appearances by various comic book characters, some of whom haven't made it onto film even now.

The Great Marriage Boondoggle
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: When Kurt wants to be alone and Artie wants someone to talk to, both end up getting what they really need.

"Was it me you came here to see?" he asked. He had no idea why that would be, but Artie nodded. Okay. "Why?"

The image entering his mind was so vibrant and beautiful that it forced him to blink - not that blinking helped. He saw Jean Grey, the woman who had died, dressed in her X-Men uniform and with her red hair glittering in the sun. She seemed taller than she should be, until he realised that of course she would be, from the perspective of a preteen boy. And she was laughing.


Unlike everyone else at the mansion after X2, Kurt isn't really in a position to grieve for the loss of Jean Grey - but he can still help. I love the way Artie's powers are portrayed here, and the images he projects show great insight into the mansion's residents. This isn't just a great story about Artie and Kurt, though, but about Jean seen through the eyes of her student, and about what her adopted family lost when they lost her.

Grief and the Lack of It
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: One Rogue. Two timelines. Three personalities. Every possibility. Rogue discovers who she is, could have been, and everything she can become.

Standing in the middle of the lot, I stared around me, trying to get a grip on the situation, which was spiraling toward Freaky real damn fast. Slowly, I put down my bag and realized I still had my change clutched in my hand.

One five, three ones, some metal, enough to get a cab. I took the coins to stuff in my jeans pocket and began to fold the bills when I froze, staring in shock at them in my hand.

I mean, how often, really, do we take a good look at our money?


You know, if you were only going to read one story in this fandom (although heaven knows why you'd be here if you wanted to do that) this would be an excellent choice. Jus Ad Bellum is a wonderful novel on so many levels. It's a great exploration of Rogue's character and the relationships she forms with very different group of X-Men. It's an exciting adventure with action and romance and suspense. Most of all though, it's a long, hard look at the ideologies involved in the conflict between mutants and humans, and at how far people on both sides are willing to go when pushed. By the end, I understood where every character was coming from, and that's its most impressive achievement.

Jus Ad Bellum
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Jean never said no.

You never told me no. That's what I remember about you and what I won't forget.

"Come on out," I said, when your parents brought me a shell of a girl. "It's safe, now."

My voice was calm, commanding. Your sea-green eyes, too old for any child, met mine and recognised me.

"Yes," you said, the first time you had spoken in weeks, and your mother cried with joy.


A dark and evocative take on the relationship between Xavier and Jean, and at what she might have been looking for when she walked out of that jet.

The Lady of Alkali Lake
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: What would you do if someone told you that you were special, that you needed to come learn how to use your unique talents? If you were Jean Grey, 11 years old in the summer of 1977, Star Wars would give you something to think about when the Jedi come to you.

"I know a man who wants to start a school, a special school for kids like you."

"Kids on crutches?" Jean was sceptical.

"Kids with special gifts that nobody understands yet."

"Like you," Jean said, before she realized that she was pulling it out of his mind.

He didn't flinch. "Like me," he said evenly. "I feel what other people feel. Similar to what you do, but not nearly as strong. It's very useful to me as a priest."

"I bet," Jean said. She and Annie had talked about the Jedi Knights, about what would you do if someone showed up and said that the Force was strong in your family.

"Would you like to talk to him?" Father Michael asked. "His name is Professor Xavier."


A gorgeous story about Jean's introduction to the mansion, and about how fiction gives her the tools she needs to understand herself and the people around her.

Last of the Jedi

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