Nightmares and Monsters: Part 9

by Misty

DISCLAIMER: Thanks to my new betareader! (At least she sends me mail!) Everybody you recognize belongs to Marvel. Other than that they're all mine! ALL MINE! BUA-HA-HA-HA!


A chill so deep it made his bones turn to ice.

At first, that aching sensation was his whole world. He barely sensed the uncontrollable trembling of his distant body. An internal twitching, as if his entire body had fallen asleep.

Slowly, blearily, color bloomed out of nothingness. It crept along the edges of his perception until he was surrounded on all sides by it. Then the colors moved. They blurred and melted together, forming fuzzy shapes and images. They were so bright and dizzying that he tried to close his dry eyes against them but found that he was unable to.

It occurred to him that he must have had his eyes open for a very long time.

In fact, now that he thought about it he couldn't move anything. All of his mental commands for movement were ignored. There was just the cold. His brain couldn't accept anymore sensory input than that; even the colors threatened to overwhelm him.

And then there was a sudden feeling of warmth. It blossomed from his forehead and down into his eyes and cheeks. It was such a wonderful feeling that he let go of the colors and focused solely on the sensation of the hand on his face. It sat there lightly, as if hesitant. It was a small hand; he could feel the little bones work beneath the skin.

He concentrated hard and brought his eyes into swimmy focus. A face looked down on him. It was very delicate, and the eyes were white to black. Wispy strands of silver-white hair fell over her shoulders and into her eyes.


His expression must have changed because she raised her other hand to her lips and made a "shhh" noise. She glanced furtively over her shoulder and then back to him. She bent close to his ear and whispered softly.

"I'm so sorry, but there's not much time now. Death is only a prelude to immortality and they'll be coming for you soon. You are Logan. No matter what happens, you must remember that. You are LOGAN."

He felt something soft press against his forehead where her skin met his and she whispered even lower.

"Don't forget."

She pulled away quickly and he realized that a woman had appeared at his other side. This one was older and had dark blonde hair. From his prone position her features looked harsh and eerily motionless.

The girl spoke as if answering a question. The putrid scent of fear filled the room. She was terrified.

"Nothing! I just thought... But couldn't we just-" She dropped her gaze from the woman's and stopped her argument cold.

After what seemed like forever, he felt the warmth slide away from him with her touch. He almost whimpered as the cold inched its way over his skin again.

The blonde woman found and locked his eyes with her own.

Something squirmed deep inside him and came charging to the forefront of his mind with her gaze. It was something very angry... but also very scared.

This time he couldn't hold back the whimper as her icy hands replaced the girl's warm caress at his temples.

No, please-

~Goodbye Mr. Logan.~

His skin was suddenly on fire and all remnants of the numbing cold were pushed violently from him. Tendrils of searing heat seeped into every pore. His body seemed to be a pyre of living flame and his mind was engulfed with the acrid smoke of its burning.

He screamed as if the very Hounds of Hell were devouring his soul. His chaotic thoughts were shredded and taken away.

Then he was gone-

-And back again.

It was so cold.

Only this time the cold came from the inside, and spread to the world.

The sun shone gold over the placid, flat landscape. Corn bowed as it passed under the Blackbird's streamline form. Farm houses dotted the fields at comfortably long intervals.

It's so peaceful down theah, Rogue thought. Ah bet those people don't have a care in th' world other than gettin' th' cows home early.

Her tranquil perusal of the farm lands outside the jet's thick window was rudely interrupted by a shrill beeping noise. After it had pointed the way to the Dark Riders the mini-cerebro unit had remained quiet. Not now, however. Cyclops and Jubilee tore into the cockpit as Storm straightened in the driver's seat. The noise continued for a small moment more, then stopped.

"Cerebro," Storm's voice shook a little as she addressed the computer. It could just be an anonymous mutant living in the vicinity, but it was entirely possible... "Identify mutant signature registered."

"Known mutant: Logan. AKA: Wolverine."

The air seemed electrically charged as each mouth fell to the general vicinity of their owner's knees. After a few seconds of shock, a barrage of cries exploded from pale lips.

"I knew it! I knew Wolvie wouldn't leave me!"

"Goddess! Could it be?!"


"All right, calm down. Calm down! Rogue, sit back down, you know better than to take off inside a plane. Jubilee stop jumping. Storm- for heavens sake we're veering off course! Drive!" Cyclops face remained impassive as he raised his hands for attention. Energy tendrils snaked out from underneath his mask, however, giving away his true feelings of excitement. A barely restrained smile curled the ends of his lips. "Cerebro, read off location."

"Unable to comply."

"What? Why?"

"Mutant Designate "Wolverine" signature no longer registering."

Jubilee looked confused. "What's wrong? We just found 'im!"

Cyclops shook his head. He picked up the little box and read the screen. "I don't know. Cerebro definitely found Logan, but his signature just disappeared after a few seconds of contact."

"Cerebro can't find 'im?" An unexpected chill coursed down Rogue's spine. The hair on nape of her neck tingled. She looked at the others. "It's like he died again."