“C’mon, Wanda!” Greer whined. “You gotta spill! You gotta tell us what it was like!”
“Why is it so important to you?” Wanda frowned. “It’s not something I’m really comfortable talking about…I wouldn’t even know how!”
“Well…” Greer considered, running her tongue along her upper teeth as in impish twinkle came into her eyes. “Was he better than Simon?”
Wanda thought for a moment. “You can’t really compare the two…” She said softly. “With Simon it was simply sex…”
“Not that there’s anything wrong with that.” Greer interjected.
“Of course not…” Wanda agreed. “But with Kurt…” She paused, a wistful look coming over her. “I know it sounds trite…but with Kurt…it really is making love…”
“Oh?” Greer arched a brow. “How so?”
“Well…he was so…gentle…so sweet…He was more concerned about me than himself…”“How do you mean?”
“I don’t think he was satisfied unless I was…satisfied…at least once.” She smirked.
“Oh, really?” Greer returned the smirk.
“With Simon…I was lucky to be…satisfied…once…” She continued, the smirk deepening to a grin. “With Kurt…well…half the time I lost count!”
“Weeeelllll…” Greer purred. “Looks like there’s one place where he lives up to his looks.”
“What do you mean?” Wanda frowned.
“Sounds like he’s a demon in the sack!” She grinned.
“And in the living room…” Wanda added leaning back in her chair. “In front of the fire…in the shower…”
“WANDA!” Greer was flabbergasted. “And I thought you were such a nice girl.”
The two began to laugh, a joyous sound that echoed through the halls. They sensed rather than saw Janet enter the room. She didn’t share their mirth.
“What’s wrong?” Greer asked with a frown at the look on her face.
“Have you seen the paper?” She asked looking at Wanda.
The smile immediately faded from her face…
“Well…” Hank said as he scribbled on the folder in his hand. “I have to give you a clean bill of health. Seems the…rest…did you some good.”
“Wunderbar!” Kurt said as he back flipped off the examining table, simply because he could.
“I don’t suppose you want to tell me about the scratches on your back?” Hank arched a brow. “Or the mark on your neck?”
“No…” Kurt smirked. “I don’t suppose I do.”
Hank chuckled as he shook his head. “Go on…get out of here…anyone as healthy as you shouldn’t be in the infirmary.”
“Well, well, well…” Kitty teased as Kurt walked into the kitchen. “If it isn’t our little cover boy!”
“Cover boy?” He frowned.
She held up the Daily Bugle. Kurt’s eyes widened as he read the banner headline, Bewitched By A Demon, accompanied by a photograph of him and Wanda, locked in a passionate kiss…the same kiss Greer had whooped at.
“I gotta say…” Kitty went on. “That is one tres romantic pic. Looks like something of the cover of one of those trashy romance novels Rogue denies she reads…”
“I do not!” Rogue protested.
“See?” Kitty ducked Rogue’s well aimed bagel.
Kurt snatched the paper from Kitty’s grasp, scanning the article. This was the last thing they wanted.
“Scheiße…” He whispered.
“Jesus!” Wanda growled as she threw the paper down in disgust. “You’d think they’d be happier if I were dating a nice, honest drug dealer or something!”
“Calm down, Wanda…” Janet soothed.
“Kurt’s helped save the world as many times as any of us, but do they care?” She slapped the paper. “No! All they see is a ‘filthy mutant’! Doesn’t matter to them that I’m a mutant too!”
“Wanda…” Greer sympathised.
“The only difference between the Avengers and the X-Men is the letter we wear on our uniforms!”
Steve Rodgers walked into the room. Even out of uniform he commanded respect. He arched a brow at the three ladies, but made no comment on Wanda’s ranting.
“Does someone want to tell me why we have a dozen reporters camped on the front steps?” He asked.
“Because they have to stick their noses in where they don’t belong!” Wanda growled.
He glanced at the far calmer Greer and Janet for an explanation while Wanda continued to rant about invasion of privacy. Janet handed him the paper.
“Ah.” He said simply.
Wanda had retired to her room, still fuming about the reporters outside. She’d lost control of her powers a few times, and several light bulbs and small piece of furniture needed to be replaced.
So when her phone rang she answered rather tersely.
“I was going to ask how you were holding up…” A familiar voice said in her ear. “But I think you just answered that…”
“Kurt…” She sighed. “God, it’s good to hear your voice. Things are just so crazy here…I think every paparazzi in New York is camped outside…”
“So I see…” Kurt chuckled.
‘See…?’ She frowned. “Where are you?”
“In the park.” He told her. “If you move a little closer to the window I will be able to see you…but then so will the vultures at your door…”
“Yeah…” She sighed.
“There isn’t any sort of alarm that will go off if I pop over there is there?” He asked.
“No…” Wanda smiled. “We have perimeter alarms, but you’d have to physically pass through…” She turned when she heard the now familiar sound that announced his arrival and the smell of brimstone that accompanied it. She was in his arms without even realising she’d moved.
Downstairs, Greer began to sniff the air. She chuckled to herself.
“What is it?” Steve asked.
She flashed a smile at him. “I smell sulphur…”
For the first time since Janet had shown her that damn paper, Wanda was content.
She felt so safe in Kurt’s arms, thoughts of the paparazzi camped on the steps were nearly forgotten. She lay her head on his shoulder, the sound of his heartbeat in her ear was one of the most soothing things she’d ever heard.
She frowned at the sudden knock at the door.
“Wanda!” Greer called in mock indignation. “You know the rules about entertaining fuzzy elves in your room!”
“I do believe we’re busted.” Kurt smiled at her.
“So…?” Greer continued. “Everybody decent in there?”
“Yes.” The pair said in unison.
“Well…what the hell’s wrong with you?” She demanded with an arched brow as she opened the door. She waggled a finger in Kurt’s face. “You’re taking an awful big risk here, buster!”
“Unless they have some sort of mutant detection device they won’t even know I was here.” Kurt pointed out.
“Guess that’s true…” Janet nodded.
“Well…I smelled you!” Greer beamed. “I didn’t need no stinkin’ mutant detectin’ device!”
“I doubt they have your hyper keen senses, Greer.” Wanda smiled softly.
Greer peered out the window, careful not to be seen. “So what are we gonna do about that lot out there?” She asked. “Personally, I’m happy to let ‘em stay out there freezing there asses off…”
“But they are causing quite a nuisance.” Janet added.
“It’ll make it difficult if we get a call out…” Wanda nodded in agreement.
“I doubt you’ll be going on any missions any time soon.” Kurt said softly.
“You added a precog to your ranks?” Greer arched a brow. “Smooth sailing to Arbour Day?”
“I just meant Wanda…” Kurt clarified.
“WHAT!?” She turned on him. “Why?”
“I doubt the Captain would risk putting you out there where those vultures, or some similar, would have easy access to you.”
“I’d show ‘em what for!” She grumbled.
“Which is exactly why you should not be talking to them.” He countered. “You’re not thinking with your head...” He gently tapped her forehead. “You’re thinking with your heart.” He placed a palm gently, and innocently, on her chest. “They make one nasty or suggestive comment about me and you’ll defend me…viciously! And…as appreciative as I am…we don’t need that right now.”
“He’s right.” Steve said softly from the door. “I can see why you fell into the role of leader when you were in Europe…”
“But I was very happy to turn the reins back to Storm when I returned to America.” He said. “It’s lonely at the top.”
“Yes…” Steve agreed.
“Awww...” Wanda cooed, wrapping her arms around him. “Poor baby…”
‘This really sucks!’ Peter Parker sighed heavily as he leaned against a lamppost a few yards down the street from the rest of the media that were milling about in front of Avengers mansion. As Spider-Man he knew both Nightcrawler and the Scarlet Witch. And because of that self same persona he knew exactly what the pair must be feeling right now.
He and Mary Jane had had to put up with similar throngs of reporters. He chuckled to himself when he remembered trying to answer their questions, which basically resolved around his feelings of his wife’s affair with himself.
He looked at the latest edition of the Bugle, with its exclusive photo of the pair. They looked pretty intense, so much so he wondered just how long they’d been a couple. ‘Probably not very long…’He surmised. They appeared to be in the early stages of romantic love. That heady time when one doesn’t feel complete without the other. When a moment apart feels like an eternity. The time of the relationship when a couple literally can’t keep their hands off each other.
He glanced about at the other gathered media mongrels. Jamison had sent him down here almost immediately after he’d nabbed the ‘exclusive’ photo, snapped by some poor slob who happened to be in the right place at the right time. He had insisted they stay on top of the story. Peter had tried to convince him that this wasn’t news, it was just a couple of young people who had found a little happiness together. But Jamison would not be deterred, his feelings about costumed adventurers…or vigilantes as he preferred to call them…were legendary.
Peter smiled to himself. He was Jamison’s most hated of New York’s numerous costumed crime fighters, but it was entirely possible that as Spider-Man he could get closer to either of them than any reporter in the city.
Of course he’d never be able to publish anything they said to him. Not without revealing his true identity to them. And though he trusted them to keep his secret, they certainly wouldn’t trust him if he were to betray them like that.
No…the next move was up to them…
“So what are we gonna do about them?” Greer repeated. “We can’t have them cluttering up to doorway like this.”
“I could go out and scare the living daylights out of them.” Kurt suggested.
“And you accuse me of not thinking straight…” Wanda chuckled.
“It’s simple…” Steve said. “I’ll go and talk to them…”
The reporters had broken into little clusters, arguing about everything and anything when Steve stepped out onto the steps in full regalia. The sudden appearance of Captain America in their midst stunned them all into silence.
“I am going to have to ask you to move on…” He began. But the reporters found their tongues before he could finished, inundating him with questions, comments and demands, except for one rather non-descript young man with curly brown hair who looked rather amused about all the fuss.
“I am not at liberty to discuss my team mates’ personal lives.” He said firmly, coldly. “Now, you are blocking a public street, and if you do not move on I have the authority to move you!”
They surged forward as he turned to move back inside.
“But he’s an X-Man!” One said.
“And what’s with the way he looks?” Said another. “Nothing that looks like that can be good!”
“It’s gonna reflect badly on the team if you let this continue!” Added another.“He’s a stinking mutie!”
He turned back, trying to keep the anger out of his face. The curly-haired, amused looking youth caught his eye. He was still smiling.
“So what do YOU think of him?” He asked.
There was something rather infectious about that smile.
“He’s possibly the most decent person I’ve ever met.” He replied in all honesty.
“You’d let him into the Avengers?” The boy asked.
“If he wanted it.”
“But he’s an X-Man!” The same reporter repeated his protest.
“Wouldn’t be the first…” The Captain smiled.