He watched the tension flow out of her like water and the mask reappear.
He wasn't fooled.
This was Jubilee, he knew her as well as he knew himself, no, actually, he knew her better considering his lack of memory.
He had never expected her to hide things from him, well not important things.
But then what did he expect? He hid himself constantly, and left when she needed him the seen Jube's needing more than his shoulder on occasions.
As usual he'd been wrong.
'Ro had chased him up and told him in no uncertain terms to drag his ass back ta the mansion and find out what was wrong with Jubilee, he hadn't expected to find her here, she reserved this space for grief and family tragedies.
But here she was, and starin' up at him through shades so dark he couldn't see her eyes any more. He could smell her tho' and she stank of confusion and old grief. Her smile was strained at the edges and he cursed himself in five ways to hell for not seeing it sooner.
Squatting down he used his normal method of questioning on her "Wassup kid?"
That brought a quick smile to her face, but it looked almost forced, he sighed under his breath, this could be a long night. He collapsed into a sitting position with his legs sprawled out in front of him just as she spoke.
"Its just that Wolvie, I'm not a kid anymore"
He made a show of looking her up and down as she folded into a position mimicking him, then shook his head.
"Yer right there" she looked even more downtrodden and the scent of confusion intensified. "So, what's the problem?"
"You won't laugh?"
Laugh, oh damn, he hoped this wasn't one of those life questions that he couldn't answer. He pulled a stogie out of his shirt pocket and held it out to her.
"Light this darlin' an it's guaranteed."
A paff later and he listened smokin' in silence while she unburdened herself, he could understand her, since when had she had a normal life to make normal life decisions? They we're so alike it hurt him to look into her eyes sometimes.
She'd finished talkin' now and was just lookin' at him, he could feel that look right through the shades, so much hope and he had an idea of what might just help, it was a big might.
"I've got an idea darlin, but ya might not like it."
Her hand moved to her face, the tips of her fingers glowin' in the starlight. She took off her shades and gave him a level look with dark blue eyes that were rimmed with a red that tore at his heart.
"I'll try anything once"
And there at the back of the midnight blue a tiny spark of her old spirit stirred.
He let one eyebrow slide up in an expression he'd learnt from her.
"Really Darlin' I'm shocked"
suddenly her firecracker smile split her face, touching her eyes.
"With a capital Sh Wolvie?"
He winked at her glad to see her back from wherever she'd been.
"Sure, now ya gonna hear this idea?"
He watched her assume the position he'd mentally nicknamed 'student awaiting instruction' and stared at him. He shook his head and then put out his stoogie.
"It's simple kid, we'll do a bit of travelling, Canada and back should be good, let ya sort out ya head."
For a little while she just stared at him, as if he'd said somethin' really really stupid and then she smiled. Not just her firecracker grin this time but a slow deep smile that lit up her eyes.
"Wolvie, that's the best idea I've heard, in"
She paused and then her grin broadened.
"Ever, when do we leave?"
He grinned back at her, her smile was contagious it always had been.
"Oh soon darlin' soon, I have a few things to sort first, two days, tops"
She looked at him for a second, suspicions in her eyes that he'd put there, he knew it now, by leaving when she needed him most. He tensed waiting for the rejection he'd have given if he were in her place.
She flung herself at him with a whoop. Yelling as he caught her and hugged her close.
And it hit him at that moment how much he'd missed this, and her.