mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: John lost a lot at Alcatraz, and gained a little bit in the aftermath.

"Try this instead." Remy pushed the whiskey over and watched, close, while John twisted the glass then sniffed the liquid. "C'mon, mon ami, you know you want to try it."

He crooked a grin, and flipped the card around his fingers, walked it from one to the other. John watched him over the top of the glass and then, fast, swallowed the whiskey down in a gulp.

It hurt, it burned, it was a fire in his belly. He couldn't breathe, but it was so good, so hot, and it uncurled in his stomach, warmed him from the inside out. Remy grabbed the glass from his hand and slammed it down on the bar.


After X3, John has lost his powers and his way - but there's a light at the end of the tunnel in the form of a certain Cajun gambler. Pyro and Gambit strike me as an interesting match, I like seeing them have fun together. (Of the getting into fights and burning things variety, and the other kind.)

Iteration
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Maybe he should just give up on being sure when it comes to John.

John sighs, and sits down beside Bobby on the porch. He smells faintly of charcoal and cigarette smoke. They don’t say anything for a while; Bobby’s still reeling from the realization that John is actually here, sitting beside him instead of a million miles away or six feet under or... who knows where.

In the months after John left and Jean died, Bobby had entertained many fantasies about John’s contrite return. Depending on the day, some would end with him kissing John and some would end with Bobby punching him.

None, however, began with a fifteen year gap and awkward silence.


Many years after X2, John walks back into the mansion and back into Bobby Drake's life. A warming but unsentimental reunion story about just how much they haven't changed in the intervening time.

Hospitality
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: One family, two answering machines, and the aftermath of a very different Alkali Lake.

For a flickering, ephemeral instant, he thought that the jet was taking off without them, that the X-Men hadn't noticed their absence in their rush to squirrel the hostages out of Stryker's compound. He pulled his too-thin jacket closer, tucked his head down, and lengthened his stride into the best sprint he could manage.

Then Rogue gasped, and he realized that the rumble he heard wasn't the thudding, grating roar of pistons and gears. It was the living scream of the sea, the sound of hundreds of thousands of gallons of water clashing against one another as they tumbled end-over-end, wild, unstoppable...


I like the way this story is told - sort of epistolary but with answering machines instead of letters. More than that, though, I like the idea. This is a universe where the events at Alkali Lake went a different direction, but not necessarily a better one. Painful and clever.

Acts of God
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: John has indeed been led away...

Magneto will offer him what he can. He will play the powerful elder, for that is what he is. He will play the sculptor; and unlike his dear friend Charles, he will complete his artwork, perfect it and refine it. He will make St. John something to be proud of.

John is seduced by evil, or possibly by an old man who is kinder to him than one might expect. I think this really gets the appeal of the pairing across - the things Pyro and Magneto have in common, and the ways in which they're very different.

Ad Delo Yada
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: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: Pyro notices the details.

It was the little details, always, that drew him back.

Strawberry ice cream, Bobby's favorite.

A pair of long white gloves in the window of a fancy women's dress store, pearl buttons at the wrist just like the pair Rogue was wearing that day.


Pyro has left the X-Men, but perhaps they haven't quite left him. An astutely observed piece about the impossibility of neatly abandoning a life.

The Devil's In the Details
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: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: A sentimental education.

It sucked that Magneto was still making him study. John had figured that when you ran away with international mutant terrorists, that really wouldn't be an issue anymore, but no. Of course, it was a little different than Xavier's, with Magneto just sitting across the table with his piercing blue eyes and asking him question after question about what he thought about the book of the week, just not letting up until John was ready to wing it right at him.

He'd done that once, in fact, when Magneto had been poking holes in his argument that might made right. Erik had batted it back into his face with a twitch of his eyebrows. "It seems to me you have two options here, Pyro," he'd drawled, amused, as John rubbed his head. "Either accept the counterargument or get better at hitting people."


Pyro is learning a lot now that he's joined the Brotherhood, and not all of it is about mutant terrorism and robbing banks. A beautiful insight into the thoughts of a character caught between adolescence and adulthood, and learning all the time.

dragonflies draw flame
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Ronny Drake starts running the day Bobby and his freak friends trash the neighbourhood.

Once the cops are gone, once the flaming wreak of a police car is off of their front lawn, once most of the neighbours have gone back inside and his mom's finally stopped crying, Ronnie takes off out the back door and he runs. The sun's low at his back and he stumbles on cracks in the sidewalks, going too fast to keep his balance. His fists are squeezed so tight that his hands feel cramped, and if he goes fast enough he can forget what his big brother is.

We didn't get a lot of insight into Ronny Drake's actions in X2, but this is a nice look into his motivations as he finds out he has more in common with his older brother than he thought.

Fast As You Can
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Awwwwwww. Adorable cartoon versions of Bobby and John.


Fire and Ice by ~Sesy on deviantART
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: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Bobby gets a letter that sends him on a personal quest.

He looked down at the envelope again.

The outside had nothing but Bobby's name scrawled over a type-written sticker with the school's address. Inside, a simple note:

In the event of my death, I, John Allerdyce, bequeath all of my earthly possessions to Bobby Drake.

The key had been taped to the bottom with the motel's name written next to it. The Lucky 7. Of course John would rent room thirteen at a place called Lucky 7.

"This is stupid," he said to the door. "I haven't even talked to him in ten years. He just did this out of spite."


Ten years later, some things have changed for Bobby Drake and others not so much. I really like the characterisation in this, plausibly extrapolating from the boys they were when we last saw them to the men they've grown into.

The Key
mutatismutandis: Xavier, Charles Xavier (Default)
Summary: And out of the ashes, the world is reborn.

In old myths, there is a firebird with magnificent plumage and long life. Five hundred years the phoenix lives, some say; others say a millennium, or more. But at last the phoenix dies, as all empires so must fall; it gathers a nest, bursts into flame, and perishes. And out of the ashes, a new phoenix is born. She rises.

After the events of X3, the survivors move on in a series of nine linked drabbles. A nice look at everyone's reactions to the end of the world.

Out of the Ashes
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: They'll logically end up standing in a pool of lukewarm water.

"Don't you ever get sick of being such an ass?" Bobby mutters.

A clock in the hall chimes. One, two, three, four. John makes a new fire sculpture, a flaming ass. To illustrate. When will he get sick of being an ass? When will he stop lusting after Bobby's ass? When will either one of them get a fucking life?

"I'm tired," he says. He's had his fun, but he's not lying. He dodged the bedwetting, but he's still an ass. He's not Virgin Bobby with the blue, blue eyes. "I'm going back to bed." He pockets the lighter and waves the flaming ass into oblivion.


Bobby and John are polar opposites or a perfect match, depending on how you look at it. This is a hot, chill story about how they might fit together, at least for a while. Complex and layered, and I really like Pyro's characterisation.

Overture
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Fun sketch - the choice to colour the hands and eyes alone really makes it pop.


Pyro X-men by ~GilJimbo on deviantART
mutatismutandis: Emma Frost (White Queen)
Pretty! Great use of colours and the framing is great.


X-Men 3 Pyro by ~cklum on deviantART
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Bobby is having issues with John's lighter.

“What the hell are you doing? Trying to burn the school down?” Bobby's voice is dry and raspy, and he snaps more from exhaustion than real concern. He hopes.

“Relax.” St. John’s voice sounds wide-awake, and Bobby honestly does not want to think about what St. John’s doing that alert at this hour. Or yeah, he really does, but not now. No, definitely not now. Later, in the shower, with soap, would a much better time.

“Relax this,” and he doesn’t even have to try hard. Doesn’t really have to try at all. Just one small breath and --

“You froze my fire. I can’t believe you froze my fucking fire.”

“Believe it.”


John won't stop playing with his lighter. Bobby can't stop staring at Johnny - or freezing their bedroom by accident. Wackiness ensues. Bobby and John are such boys in this story, and it's funny and sweet and sexy.

(While he doesn't appear anywhere in this series, I can never read it without imagining that the Professor is sitting in his office overhearing Bobby's thoughts through all this and facepalming in an epic fashion. I think this is probably just me, though.)

Freeze Out

Applying Heat

Liquify

Melt

Flux

Mercury Rising
mutatismutandis: Bobby's ice rose. (Gifted)
Summary: Jubilee tries to be good. John doesn't make it easy.

The night of Liberty Island, Jubilee makes sure that everyone is in their rooms by curfew. She falls asleep on the grand staircase, waiting for her teachers to come home.

It's Laurie Collins' frightened sobbing that wakes Jubilee in the cold, dark pit beneath Alkali Lake. Though she'd like to sob herself, Jubilee pulls Laurie into her lap and rocks the younger girl until she quiets. Jubilee keeps the other kids calm by retelling every fairy tale, every myth and every campfire story she can remember. She's down to a recitation of Monty Python's Holy Grail, complete with accents, when Ororo finally finds them.


This is a great character portrait of Jubilee, caught between trying to be responsible and her more chaotic impulses. I can see why this version of her would be drawn to Pyro, with whom she has too many of the wrong things in common.

To Be Good

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