Of Infinity and Chaos: Parts 6-8

by Parodys

Disclaimer: Same as other parts, the characters don't belong to me, Marvel owns them. Don't sue, all I have are some beat up comics and a 6ft Godzilla so that's all you'll get.

Authors notes: Just some quick notes, I haven't really read the X-men comics that much so if they're a little off, sorry. As for what happens in the end, I know fully well that it can't happen but in the comic universe..what the hey! And a big hug to Angel_w for being a doll and putting up with constant emails. Please let me know what you think!

As per usual: *Telepathic thought* [foreign language]

Part 6

-Girls dorm-

Dark clouds rolled into the sky, rumbling their arrival and heralding a state of panic in the girl's dorm. Fat raindrops splattered against the windows as the clouds grew blacker and blacker. The panic, for lack of better words, had consumed almost every single female on the floor of the girls dorm as they got ready for prom night. Slamming doors and frantic cries could be heard throughout as each sought to counter the effects of the coming torrential rain.

"Ahhhhh! My hair's gone all frizzy!"

"My dress is going to be ruined! Do you have any idea what this will do to my silk gown?"

"Does anyone have any hairspray? I'm all out."

The one person unaffected by the downpour and the prom had spent the better part of the afternoon in her room watching the rain fall. Jubilee found beauty in the droplets of water that were falling from the sky. For too long, she hadn't seen rain, sunshine, or even clouds and she had learned to appreciate the simple beauty of the nature around her.

From her seat next to the window, Jubilee could hear the muffled chaos outside her door. Although both M and Paige had tried to get her to go with them to the salon, she had refused. Jubilee knew that her friends cared about her, but it still hurt that she was just a guest at the prom, when it should have been her night, no matter how kindly Angelo had meant the invitation. Subsequently, she had felt little need to get her hair, makeup and nails done as most of the girls were doing.

Sighing, she got up and started to slip off her shirt, getting ready to take a shower. She had taken off her pants when she caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror. Pausing, she stepped out of her undergarments and stood in front the mirror, looking at herself for the first time in years. She had filled out a little, her body full and curved, instead of the hollows that had prevailed when she first arrived. She had grown a few inches, and now stood at 5" 8 and her once shorn hair had grown into a short bob. Tracing a finger down the scar that trailed down her neck to her collarbone, she contemplated the woman that gazed back at her in the mirror.

A grin slowly spread across her face, if she was going to go to the ball then she might as well knock 'em dead. Besides it'd never hurt to remind the team, that while she was still the baby, she had also grown up. For the past few weeks they had been extremely over protective of her, and while it was nice, sometimes it could get a bit much. Grabbing a towel, Jubilee headed for the showers, tonight was going to be very interesting.


Paige and Monet finally finished their preparations and had decided to grab Jubilee and make their way to the living room where they had agreed to meet their dates. Paige was dressed in a short green sequined number and had her hair up in a elaborate design of curls and butterflies. M had opted for a stunning white, floor length gown and had left her hair in a simple knot. Both had reservations as to what Jubilee would end up looking like, since she had refused to let either in, but neither said anything as they stood in front of Jubilee's door. Knocking once, they waited silently trying to ignore the muffled thuds and curses coming from inside.

Finally the door opened, revealing Jubilee looking a trifle harried but excited. She was wearing a clinging, dark blue satin dress that she had bought the day at the mall. Her hair had been put into spikes with streaks of silver, and her face had been very lightly done; enough makeup to enhance her features. Last but not least, silver sandals and a sapphire choker (borrowed the last minute from Frost with warnings of "You loose it and you'll be paying for it the rest of your life.") completed the outfit.

Grinning at her friends' reaction, Jubilee glanced down at her now generous cleavage. "Amazing what a wonderbra can do, huh?"

"Wow, Jubes ya look gorgeous!" Reaching over, Paige hugged Jubilee. "Tonight's gonna be great. Wait till ya see Jono in a tux."

"Indeed, you look very nice."

"So do you guys." Grabbing her purse from the chair, she pulled the door shut behind them. "Come on, we said we'd meet the guys at 8:30. It's 8:55 now."

"Don't worry about it. I say we make em wait another fifteen." Paige grinned a little wickedly.

"Tempting as that sounds, I think I'd rather be just the half hour late instead of forty five minutes. Call me crazy." The three girls walked down the stairs to the living room where Jono, Angelo and a tall blond (M's date) stood waiting. The room was pretty much empty, with the three guys arguing over which sport was better; football, soccer or rugby.

The boys fell silent as the girls entered the room, who weren't above a little showmanship (after all a girl has to look her best). Walking towards Angelo, Jubilee couldn't help but smile. Angelo bowed with a flourish and held out a dozen or so tulips that were tied with a bow. Taking the bouquet she inhaled the sweet scent, relishing the bright blooms.

"Didn't figure you for a rose girl. I hope you like these."

"Ange, I love tulips! We always used to have them at home." Still smiling she placed the flowers in the vase that Angelo had put on the table for her. Placing the flowers carefully, she arranged them to her liking as Angelo waited patiently.

"Glad you like it. Chiquita?" Holding out his arm, she took it and let him lead her out of the room. "You look great."

Rolling her eyes inwardly, Jubilee wanted to scream. Four hours of getting ready and that was all? How infuriatingly, annoyingly, typically male. Jonothon chuckled as he picked up the stray thought. Winking at her, he said, *Well what did you expect? If it helps Jubes, you look like a knockout.*

Smiling at Jono who was currently being dragged out the door, she and Angelo made their way to Proudstar hall where the senior prom was well underway.


Emma and Sean stood watch over the dancing teenagers, resignedly drinking Hawaiian Punch and eating pigs in a blanket.

*Tell me again how we got roped into chaperoning for this, Emma?*

* ^sigh^ As heads of the school it was our duty and right to do this, and we lost the bet with the other teachers. Who knew that Mary could do that with her toes? Remind me not to do that again.*

*Shoot me if we do this again.* Swirling his plastic cup, Sean wished for umpteenth time that evening, that alcohol had been served. Any evening that involved hyper teenagers and crepe paper needed something stronger than fruit juice. Looking out onto the students, he picked out Generation X dancing in the far corner of the hall. A slow ballad was being crooned by the band and the couples were softly swaying to the music. Jubilee had her head on Angelo's shoulder and looked very happy as she moved to the music. *What is going to happen to her?*

Emma looked over to the girl in question. *I'm not sure. I have somewhat of an idea but we would have to invest some time into it.*

*Emma, I failed the lass once. I will do everything in my power to help her.*

*Good, as would I. We'll talk to her about it once everything's been ironed out. No need to interrupt their evening.*

*Sounds like a plan. Say Emma...is that your necklace that's she's wearing?*

Down on the floor, the sweet song filtered though the crowd, finally reaching Jubilee and Angelo who were slowly swaying to the music. As they danced, Angelo lightly held on to the girl, afraid if he held on too tight she would bolt. He suspected that she had some issues about touching and having others touch her, it was no wonder after all she had been through. So, he led her the entire night as if she were a glass doll, ready to shatter at any moment, letting Jubilee initiate any contact or move.

Laying her head on his shoulder, Jubilee smiled as she breathed in the musky cologne Ange was wearing She thought happily to herself, it's times like this when I remember what it was like to be happy.

Part 7

-Dorm commons. 3am-

The dance had ended with a spectacular finale of fireworks (helped a tad by the human sparkler) and the five (M's date had needed to leave) were spending the rest of the night in the common room watching movies and eating any kind of processed sugar they could get their hands on.

The storm had intensified and every few minutes thunder shook the building. The Gen Xer's had laid out piles of blankets, pillows, sleeping bags and food, and were sprawled all over the mess. The next day they were separating over the summer so they were savoring their last few hours together. In the fall they would come back to a mansion near the school, which would become their new headquarters. Although they would still be affiliated with the X-men, the teenagers no longer aspired to become a part of the famous team, but had decided that Generation X was a team in it's own right.

A rather interesting Truth or Dare session was in progress when the lights flickered and went out with a huge flash of lightening.

Jono, who was saved from a rather embarrassing dare, tried to get up and ended up stubbing his toe on Monet who was reaching for the Ding Dongs. *Bloody, friggin hell!!*

"Oh great. Super. What are we supposed to do now?" Paige, slightly hyper with caffeine, whined as she searched for the bowl of Sugar Bombs.

"Try this." Concentrating, Jubilee held out her hand and produced a glowing ball that lifted up and hung over the group. The light cast a blue glow on the group, spinning slightly in place, and for a moment the room took on an eerie quality.

"Cool. But somebody needs to change the fuse." Angelo poked curiously at the orb, causing it to bob up and down.

Shrugging, Jono held out a fist. *Rock, paper, sissors?*

Five minutes later, Jubilee found herself on the way down to the basement. "don'tseewhyIhavetogobymyselfandallaloneanditsdarkandfreakywhatkindofa stupidgameisrockpapersissorsanywayandi'mbraveandIcanhandleanything." Muttering under her breath she opened the door leading to the basement and peered down the steps. Raising the ball higher she walked down the steps trying to pinpoint where the fuse box was. The basement was damp and musty, and she was sure that she could hear nasty things scurrying around. Mutant rats, that's what they were, and spiders-big hairy ones that jumped in your hair. Suddenly she heard the door above the stairs squeal on it's hinges as it slammed shut. Sprinting to the top of the stairs, she grabbed the door handle and tried to force the door open but didn't move.

"It's okay, you can do this. Just think of something." Forcing herself to breathe she looked at the glowing ball that had followed her start to sputter and die out. Her concentration gone, she struggled to keep it going but within a few seconds it popped out of existence leaving her in total blackness. Trying to calm the rising panic, she tried to generate some sparks, anything, but nothing happened. Grabbing the handle again, she tried kick the door open, ramming into the wood, but to no avail.

Silence permeated every part of the blackness, her harsh breath cutting it, sounding too loud. Closing her eyes, Jubilee tried to bring her thoughts in control, trying to ignore the dreaded familiarity of the dank smell of the basement. Instead, when she opened her eyes all she could see was the dark caverns of the mine and hundreds of dead aliens around her. Panicking she tried using her powers but all that flew from her hands were her harmless paffs.

"Nononononononononononono." pushing away the bodies she turned and tried to run away, only to be confronted with more and more bodies. Her hands slick with sweat, she attempted to wipe off the blood that dripped from her only to have it smear into her mouth and eyes. Tears streamed down her face as she looked all around her, everyone she had saved was dead. Tripping in her haste, she pulled herself up only find her attackers in front of her. Huge hulking beings blocked her path, leering at her. They were so big, nothing could stop them now. They could make her hurt, make sure that she would be in pain forever.

Dropping to the floor she clutched her knees and rocked back and forth. "Nonononononono." This wasn't real, just another dream. That's all it was a dream. Just a nightmare. She was strong now, she could handle anything. Feeling a hand on her shoulder she raged up from her position and blew the person away from her. "No! Stay the hell away from me!" she screamed. She needed to get away, fly away from these dead bodies and blood.

Screaming she transformed, the usually pulsing light blue turning a deep fiery blue. Out, she needed to get out. Blood pounding in her ears, the oppressive weight of the darkness suffocated her. She would not die in this alien cesspool of death and decay. Her fury carried her up, blowing a path in front of her, disintegrating the floors one by one, until she had burst past through the roof and into the sweet freedom of the night sky.


Upstairs the gang had been waiting for the lights to turn back on and when nothing had happened, had sent in Monet to investigate. Minutes later a blue being burst through the floor and ceiling, showering splinters everywhere.

Looking up at the new 'skylight', Jonothon called out to Emma and Sean. *We have a situation. I think it took out Jubes and M. We might need the X-men on this...holy...* staggering, Jonothon buckled under the wave of hate and fear that flowed from the intruder. Struggling, Jono finally managed to put up enough strong shields to hold against it, but still could feel the constant onslaught of emotion.

*Paige, go call up Rogue's and Gambit's team and tell them we need them asap, then go check on Jubes and M. Skin, you and I are going up onto the roof and see if we can find out what's going on. Let's move.*

Husking into steel, Paige sprinted from the room to contact the team on the scanner. Angelo was already swinging his way up through the holes in the floors and ceilings to the roof. Shooting a concentrated burst of energy, Jonothon flew up to see total disaster in front of him. A huge moon lit up the night, cradling the night in loving arms.

The glowing blue being, obviously agitated, was flying around in circles incinerating anything that was in it's path. The surrounding trees had been blown away and about a hundred yard radius of destruction surrounded it. Jonothon paused mid-air to asses the damage. Luckily all of the students had headed for home or parties after the prom, so there weren't any people around to be hurt. The being, a girl judging by it's curves, was swooping around in the air, blue droplets falling from her cheeks. A heart wrenching creening came from the girl, followed by wave after wave of fear and hate that left Jono weak. His heart went out to the girl, for a second was reminded of Penance when she first came to the Academy. They would have to take this girl out without hurting her.

*Jono! M's been knocked unconscious. She's been hurt pretty badly. I'm still trying to find Jubes. I have to stay here and take care of it.* Paige's psi-link, automatically initiated in crisis, sent out worry for her teammates. *Be careful Jon.*

*I will, sunshine.* Jono turned to Angelo who had just swung up onto the roof. *Skin! We need to find a weakness of some sort. We two are the only ones left to deal with this until we get backup, and she's putting off so much emotion I can't hold out much longer. It's up to you buddy.*

"Si, it's up to ole Skin to save the day." Ange crouched on the roof tiles surveying the damage around him. "What the hell do you want me to do? Did you see what she did to the trees???"

*Talk to her?* Ange snorted as he wondered how what kind of funeral he was going to have. *Well, then just keep her distracted. I'm going to find out where Emma and Sean are.*

Flying up, Sean appeared holding a shaken Emma, whom he carefully placed on the roof beside Angelo. Hovering beside Jonothon, Sean took in the situation. "No need, lad. The X-men will be here in a few minutes. Luckily they were nearby when they got our call. Any idea who this is?"

Jono shook his head. *No clue. The gel seems pretty shaken up. I just think she's scared and not aware of what she's doing.* He pointed to the destruction and charred trees.

"That may be true, lad, but we have got to calm her down or take her out before she causes any more damage. We cannae allow for any more to be hurt." Sean patted Jono on the shoulder. "Dinnae worry, looks like she can take what we dish out without blinking. I don't want to hurt her anymore than you do."

Down below, Angelo swung his way from the roof to one of the burnt branches of a nearby tree, trying to get a better view of the girl. He peered up at the swooping girl. "Hey chiquita, come on down. Nobody's gonna hurt you here, we take care of our own."

Turning to look at the grey man, Jubilee shook her head, the blue darkening to black, camouflaging against the night sky for a second. "Nobody can help me. We're all trapped here and nobody's going to come." She completely ignored the others watching her, her mind trapped in a scenario of what had happened over those four years.

Emma sat on the roof trying to pull herself together. Concentrating, she tried to probe the being's mind but met immense shields, so intense that she couldn't penetrate them. She sent out a tight thought to Angelo. *See if you can talk her down. There she can get into a position where Jono and Sean can bring her down.*

"Uh...Emma, I don't think we should.." Something didn't feel right with Angelo, unsettling him as he heard Emma give the order.

The blue head whipped around to where Emma was sitting. "You will not touch me!! You will not touch me ever again!!" A huge burst of energy hit Emma, blowing her through to the ground floor of the building. The woman's once white outfit, now soaked with rapidly spreading blood.

Jubilee turned around to where Sean, seeing Emma's broken body land on the ground, had screamed forward, approaching from behind. The air around him wavered for a second, then he was thrown to the ground with a blast. He got up, dirt and debris clinging to his body as he tried to stand. A sharp pain shot through his right arm and he looked down at it, to see a bone protruding. His right arm hangly limply, Sean rose in the air, furious. Sonic screams with the power to shatter steel, hit the girl, sending her reeling.

"You. Will. Not. Hurt. Me. Anymore. I will not die here." Punctuating each word with plasma bursts, Jubilee drove Sean's body into the ground, leaving him a broken bundle of bones and blood.

Jonothon circled the girl warily. Innocent or not, she had taken out four people in less than two minutes, and however much he didn't want to hurt her, he was pretty sure that he couldn't kill her. Ripping the bandages from his face, he totally let loose the nuclear furnace inside. Her body became engulfed in flames as he continued to pour his energy out. The force hurled the girl back in the air, spinning her until finally slamming her into the side of a building. Exhausted, Jono stopped, wondering if he had gone too far. Climbing out of the rubble of the demolished wall, the girl flew up, seemingly unfazed.

Jubilee sped back, and instead of the physical attack he was expecting, she lashed out mentally. His shields crumbled under the searing pain she caused in his mind. Within moments, Jono dropped unconcious onto the roof, sliding down on the tiles until he stopped, balanced precariously on the edge.

Angelo watched the carnage unfold before him, unease settling into the pit of his stomach. Instincts had saved him more times than he could count and he was going to follow his gut now. Holding up his hands he called out to the girl who was being to moan.

"Hey girl. I just want to talk." Frowning the girl whirled around to look at him, still perched in the tree. "I ain't gonna hurt ya, or even try. What's Skin gonna do to ya? I'm a lightweight, ya don't need to worry about me."

Silent, the girl floated contemplatively in front of him. Reaching out one glowing hand, she tentatively touched his hand, tracing his fingers and the lines, lightly running her finger over the still raw wound on his wrist. "See? Nothin to worry about." Trying to remember to breathe, he could feel her hands on his skin, they were solid, warm, leaving a tingle.

"You're trapped here too."

"Where are we trapped?" Not wanted to upset her, Angelo played along, uncertain of the direction the conversation was heading.

"Why, here! I think it's some sort of mine, everyone calls it [the Pits]. I think its Hell." she whispered at him, nodding seriously. The foreign word sounded harsh to Angelo's ears, like nothing he had ever heard on Earth. Keeping his face neutral, his mind whirled trying to figure out what was so familiar about this.

Glancing over her shoulder, Angelo could see the some of the X-men flying up, silhouetted against the moon. Rogue was flying up carrying Wolverine and Peter, while Gambit was followed by Jean, Nathan and Beast on some sort of hover craft. Landing on the ground about fifty yards away, the team kept their distance as they conversed for a second, unable to see Angelo against the backdrop of trees. Ignoring the conversation, Wolverine caught a familiar scent and started as he saw the young woman with Skin. They had been told that an intruder had attacked the school and had taken out two people when the call was given. The only description Paige had given was that it was a blue mutant.

"There's the creaturah Paige said. We need to do this quickly people. It looks like she's gotten to everyone but Angelo over there." Rogue quickly directed them, not wanting any more people hurt.

"No!!" Wolverine's cry stopped his teammates mid attack. He couldn't allow her to be hurt, no matter what he had promised. "Don't do anything. I know that it's hard to believe but it's Jubilee. I can't go into all the details but it's her. It'll be difficult to take her out, just look what she did to Emma, Sean and Jonothon. Our best hope is to talk her down. Rogue, if worse comes to worse you'll have to use your powers and drain her. Once she's unconscious she'll revert to her body...I think." Wolverine winced as he looked at the sad faces of his friends, worry evident on their faces.

"Oh, sugah. Jubilee is dead. Honey, ya gotta keep that in mind." Rogue gazed sadly at her friend.

"Just trust me. Please. Jean scan me and tell them." Desperate, he turned to her.

Closing her eyes, Jean focused for a minute, filtering through stray thoughts until her eyes opened in surprise. "He is telling what he thinks is the truth. If he's right then that is Jubilee. Apparently she didn't want us to know of her arrival."

Gambit sighed. He, no more than Wolverine, liked to reveal secrets, but sometimes it was the only option. "Logan is telling the truth. I saw dem meet one night. The petite gave me some hair for a DNA test. She is back."

Rogue shrugged, still skeptical and shook her head. "Do what ya gotta do, Logan."

Standing out to the side, the group waited as Wolverine scaled the wall, jumping onto the roof, approaching the girl, stepping loud enough on the roof tiles for her to hear his approach. "Hey darlin. Jubilee, what are ya doing?"

Jubilee turned. Wolverine was here! He could save her from this place. "Wolvie you're here! You've come to save me!" Rushing towards him, she paused two feet away. Frowning she shook her head, "No, you're not real. My Wolvie would've saved me long ago. Too late now."

His voice was thick as he reached out. "Just took me a little time to find ya, that's all."

Tears dripped off her face as she looked at the outstretched hand. "But you're too late. Everyone's dead. Can't you see them? And I'm all alone. Seems like everybody leaves me. Why?"

His heart breaking, salty droplets running down his grizzled cheeks, Wolverine tried again. "You aren't alone Darlin'. I'm here and so is that person behind you."

Jubilee gazed at Skin who was watching the interchange with jaw on the floor. "Yes, he is here, huh? Nobody can leave though. No no no. They died when they tried to leave."

She turned away from Wolverine and returned to Angelo. Jubilee resumed her intense examination of Skin, who was feeling more than a little overwhelmed. "Jubilee, darlin. Come on down and we can talk. Please, let me talk to ya." the girl continued to ignore his pleas and studiously kept her back to him.

Wincing, Wolverine nodded to Rogue who flew up and grabbed the girl from behind. Screaming, the two women struggled, Rogue's face contorting as she tried to drain Jubilee. The air around them rippling, as each struggled for control. Suddenly with a gasp, Jubilee changed back to her body, slipping into unconciousness and slumping in Rogue's arms causing the woman to drop her to the ground where Peter managed to catch her.

Still in the air, Rogue tried to force the power from emerging, pain twisting her body as she tried to maintain her form. Reaching out, Jean helped Rogue establish control. *I will keep it in place until the effect wears off.*

Floating down to the earth, Rogue collapsed on the dirt, choking as Jubilee's memories floated to the surface. "Mah gawd, the child has been to hell and back. What have we done?"

Scaling down the wall of the dorm, Wolverine joined them on the floor. Emma, Sean, Monet and Jono had been rounded up and were on their way to where Paige was taking care of them in the Med Lab and now Jubilee was being hauled there. Debating whether or not to stay or to go with Jubilee, Angelo finally followed the stretcher being pushed by Beast and Jean, leaving Wolverine to face four curious teammates.

Sighing, Wolverine shrugged. "Let's go get a drink, 'cause first I'm going to find out if the kid's okay and then I'll tell ya all I know. We're gonna be here a while." Turning they followed Wolverine after the stretcher into the depths of the campus where the MedLab was.

Nathan, who had remain silent throughout the entire time, gruffly patted Logan on the shoulder. "That is Jubilation. Her psi signature is unique."

"I knew it was her from the moment I first laid eyes on her." Shrugging off Nathan's hand, Logan led the team down to wait for Beast to take care of the wounded. God knows what this is going to do to her. The burly man shook his head as he thought about what would come, she already felt apart from the group, and what the hell was this going to do to them and her?

Part 8

-Academy's MedLab-

It had been several hours, with both Hank and Jean working on the injured, assisted by Paige. Jubilee, under protest from both Angelo and Wolverine, had been put under a security grid and was securely strapped to a gurney, given a sedative to calm her and keep her under.

Hank had mended, sewn and wrapped his peers as best as possible. The damage, although not fatal, had been severe. Sean had a concussion, several contusions and a badly broken arm. Emma had a broken leg with cuts and bruises all over her body. Jono, lucked out and had suffered the least amount of injuries from the four, with a sprained wrist and bruises. As for Monet, her near invulnerable body was rapidly healing itself and at the moment, was silent, watching from a chair in the corner of the room.

Angelo, stood over Jubilee, concern evident on his face as he lightly stroked her hand. Paige walked by and stood watching the two for a second. "Don't worry Ange. She's gonna be all right."

"Yeah, I know Paige. I just wish she had told us about her powers and stuff."

"Think about it Ange, Jubes has never been one for trusting others. For all she knew, we forgot about her like everyone else. She's been hurt so many times, why the hell should she open herself up for another betrayal?"

"Believe me, I know, okay? I just wish it hadn't happened this way." Angelo brushed a strand of hair from the still girl's face. Paige smiled to herself and walked off, sharing a small nod with Logan who was behind Angelo.

Wolverine, satisfied for the moment that Jubilee was okay, left the room, closely followed by Hank and Jean. Outside the room, the rest of the X-men were strewn about the various chairs and couches that had been placed there over the years by people waiting for news about friends and loved ones. The conversation died off as his footsteps echoed in the room.


Hank moved beside Logan and pulled out a pad. "The injuries for all of them were severe. Luckily nothing was fatal, and it will take a few weeks to heal. I examined Jubilee briefly and physically she appears to be fine, mentally it's another story." He paused and nodded for Jean to continue.

"I am going to try and help her, however I believe that before we get any further, Logan should fill us all in on some details."

Wolverine shrugged, " I don't know that much. She appeared to me about 3 weeks ago. I knew that her powers had grown and that she hadn't told anyone. She didn't feel safe enough to let trust anyone fully. We've talked a few times since then but never about what happened to her. It hurt her too much."

Angelo walked in, (he had been listening to the conversation from the next room) angry as he saw the men and women he used to emulate. "I'll tell you what happened. For four years she was trapped in a slaver's mining operation. Four years in isolation from humans, four years of fighting to survive, four years of thinking that you all forgot about her. Somehow she got free and she came back." His eyes glinted as he vented his fury. "And do you know what she came back to? She came back to find that her beloved X-men stopped looking for her claiming her dead, her team had grown up and now had graduated without her. Last night she just went to what should have been her prom, as a guest. Her whole life has been flipped upside down, that's what the hell happened. Is it any wonder that she didn't want you guys to know she was back?"

Face red, Ange glared at the team who had the decency to look ashamed. "I can't be here. I'm going inside with Jubilee and wait for her to wake up." Stalking out, he slammed the door behind him.

"Ah, can tell ya what happened." six pairs of eyes swiveled to look at Rogue. "Her memories are still strong." She closed her eyes, concentrating for a moment. "She was trapped in that slaver's operation, like Angelo said. Then one day...she...uh...her powers evolved and she was able to free the slaves. Then last night she was going downstairs to change the fuse in the basement and the door slammed shut on her. Oh gawd...she's trapped and all she can see are dead aliens, the ones she tried to save. And then she was being attacked by ...guards it looks like."

Jean eye's brimmed. "I never stopped searching for Scott, why should Jubilee have been any different? We've destroyed this child's life." She visibly pulled herself together, stood up, walked to the coffee pot and refilled her cup. "Although...what happened last night reminds me of post-traumatic stress syndrome. Men who served in Vietnam suffered from it."

"It makes sense." Monet spoke up quietly from the back of the room. "I talked to Paige who monitored the whole thing. She only attacked when she felt threatened, self-defense. It also appears that her latent psi abilities were manifested in this episode. Jubilee was never much for hurting people. Or trusting. She kept the true extent of her abilities a secret from us."

Chewing his lip thoughtfully, Hank turned to his teammates. "The question now is to what we should do with her."

"No offense, Hank, but haven't we done enough already? I say let her decide what she wants when she wakes up. So much of her life has been controlled, I think it's time we recognize that she grew up." Logan idly scratched an itch on his face with one claw, subtly driving home his point.

*Very insightful, Logan. I'm surprised.* Jean smiled at the short, powerful man who cared so deeply.

*Yeah, it's a phase so enjoy it while it lasts.* Grinning, Logan walked past her into the Med Lab.


Bright lights...bad. Very bad. Light bad. Light hurts brain. Make light go. An intense light had worked it's way into Jubilee's brain, woken her up, forcing her into consciousness. She had a headache of massive proportions and she couldn't seem to be able to move her hands or feet. Suddenly more wide awake, she struggled with the restraints, looking wildly around, panic rising in her throat.

"Chiquita, calm down. Relax, okay? I'll take care of this." Angelo's face appeared in the bright glare and then disappeared. She could hear people arguing, a woman, who sounded like Rogue, most probably Hank, Paige and Angelo.

"What the hell is going on? Somebody better let me loose. God-dammit. Who the f*ck are you?" Sparks started popping around her hands as she became more and more furious.

A dark blue, furred face smiled down at her. "Hello, Jubilee. Welcome back. Do you know where you are?"

"Hank! Dammit, I'm supposed to be at the Academy, the dance was last night and let me the hell out of here!"

"Do you remember anything about what occurred after the dance?" Still smiling absently, he checked her pupils and blood pressure while nodding for her to continue.

"Yes. There. Was. A. Dance. Then. A. Sleepover. We. Slept. Then this."

"Actually, no. Apparently, four nights ago, you had something of a panic attack, thought you were back at the mines and then attacked your teammates when they tried to subdue you."

Disjointed images came to her, Sean with a broken arm, Emma lying still on the ground, talking with Angelo. "Oh my god."

Hank continued to talk as he unbuckled her straps, now satisfied of her mental state. "Try not to worry about it right now. Everyone is doing well and will recover fully. Just get some rest. Jubilee?"


"We may have officially stopped searching but we never gave up hope. I am glad that miracles happen, even to us." Pulling the curtain, he left the two alone, Jubilee racked with guilt and Angelo sitting awkwardly in the chair beside her.

"God, I could've killed them. I attacked my own teammates. Oh godohgodohgodohgod." Sniffing she ran a hand across her nose, suddenly looking more like five than seventeen. Reaching out across the room, Ange brought her a handful of Kleenex. Taking one, she blew her nose, and proceeded to shred the remaining tissue.

'Jubes...they didn't know who you were and they attacked. Anything you did was in self-defense, and I saw what happened. You could've killed them but you didn't."

"I hurt them!"

"Jubecita, listen to me. Listen!" Turning her towards him, he met her eyes, sincere and open. "You have been through more than most, you've had to come back to your friends grown up, and everything else, and you have been keeping all those emotions inside. Not once have you yelled at anyone for abandoning you, or expecting you to be the same or anything. I know you're afraid to let loose, but you're going to destroy yourself if you don't. Please..."


"Please..." He enveloped her in a hug, squeezing her tight. " Let me be your friend."

A small tear, dropped onto his shoulder, bringing forth a flood of others as her defenses dissolved.

A few hours later, Jubilee lay on the bed, puffy red eyes gazing up at the ceiling. Although, she wasn't fully better, some of her smaller wound were being to heal. The rest would just take time. A thought niggled at the back of her mind, making her grin suddenly. She glanced over at Angelo, who was snoring softly and draped over the chair. Smiling, she left the man alone, he probably needed to sleep and snuggling down into her blanket, she did so as well.


Over the next few days, Jubilee was kept confined to her bed in the MedLab. Aside from Angelo and Beast, someone constantly kept watch over the girl. Rogue and Wolverine were the most common, often lending an ear or a third player for a video game. (Beast had installed it within an hour of Jubilee announcing she was bored on the first day. A bored Jubilee, no matter at what age, was dangerous.)

It had been a long day for everyone, after all there's only so many levels in Doom VI. Rogue dozed lightly in the corner, her white lock falling across her face.

"I'm bored." Jubilee threw down her controller pouting. A gleam coming to her eyes, she glanced at Angelo who was seeing how many twizzlers he could stuff in his mouth. "Hey Ange?"

" Mmph..yeah?"

"I wanna show you something."

Straightening up in the chair, he scratched at the stubble on his chin. "Sure, what is it?"

"Well we have to go outside for it. Come on..." Jumping off the bed, she grabbed his hand and dragged him out the door and outside with him protesting the whole way. "Relax, I'll show you this and we'll go back inside." Pushing him out onto the grounds, Jubilee glanced at a figure flying unobtrusively behind them. Rogue, assigned watchdog for the day, winked at her, motioning for her to go ahead. Deciding to ignore the woman, Jubilee walked to the top of the hill outside the building.

Still skeptical, Angelo crossed his arms and waited. Facing him, Jubilee slowly transformed, grinning at the look on his face. "Yeah, yeah I know that you've seen this already but I bet you've never seen this. Do you mind?" She flew up into the air, waiting for his approval before grabbing his arms and lifting him up.


" I am not gonna drop ya...chill a little please." Rising up higher and higher into the air, she climbed until they could see for hundred of miles in any direction. The air was crisp and clear, the view breathtaking of valleys and rivers on the land below.

"Oh wow. It's gorgeous. Man, I feel kind of like Lois Lane."

Jubilee giggled, "Like, I am so a Superman." Sighing with pleasure, she peered up at the clouds above. "When I was a kid, Storm or Rogue used to take me flying and I always wished that I could fly by myself. I'm glad something good came of this."

Twisting around to look at her, the wind blowing her hair around her face and her blue eyes bright with excitement, Angelo said softly. "More good than just flying came from that, Jubecita."

Down below, Jean and Wolverine watched the two in the sky. Worry clouded Logan's face as he watched his little girl fly beyond his vision.

"Are you..."

"Yes, she and Angelo are fine. This is her way of thanking him. They both need this right now, she has a long road ahead of her."

"What about.."

"We'll get Hank to get a full look at her powers and capabilities, for her own sake at least she needs to know what she's capable of."

"Good, I am glad she's happy for now at least."


Several days later.....

Emma sat up in bed, calmly assessing the young woman in front of her. Hank had finally examined her and found the extent of her capabilities. Along with Jubilee's telepathy, she had progressed from generating her "paffs" to being able to manipulate energy on a molecular level, thus allowing her to fly and change forms. Once she honed these powers, she would be extremely powerful.

Emma's leg had been bound in a cast, and had been decorated by the various members of the team, along with Leech and Artie's drawing of Beavis and Butthead, a present conveniently drawn while she was sleeping.

"How are you doing, Jubilation?"

"Okay. Are you all right?"

"Yes, I heard that your psi-powers manifested themselves. Congratulations."

"Look, Frosty I'm.."

"It's okay, Jubilee. We both did what we thought we had to do to survive. I don't blame you and neither does Sean." A rather smug smile ghosted across her face. "Although I suppose if I said I told you so about it your powers..."

"Glad you're feeling better Emma." Jubilee stared at the bedsheet, her hands playing with the sheet. "I have some things I need to do, so I'll be going away for the summer. I'll be back and don't worry I'll keep in touch."

"Do you need anything?"

"Not really. I just wanted to say that I'll miss you."

"Thank you, Jubilee." Emma peered at the drawings the girl was absent mindedly doodling on her cast. Pointing to one, Emma grinned, giggling at a character, "Hey, is that Bobby?"


Later that day....

Jubilee, pulled around to the front of the dorm in a red convertible, the top down and the radio blaring. "Ready Ange?"

Standing up, Angelo grabbed his bags and dumped them into the backseat, vaulting over the door. "Cool ride, chiquita. Where did ya get it?"

"Frosty lent it to me. By the way, thanks for coming with."

"Es nada. I wasn't doin' much anyway, 'sides I miss my old stompin ground. It'll be good to visit." Angelo looked around at the leather seats and newly installed cd soundsystem. "Does Emma know that she lent you this?"

"Um, yeah. But we should probably be out of the state when she finds out. She might be a little ticked." Laughing, the two sped off, regardless of police, traffic laws and speed limits; after all what's the point of being young, a mutant, and with snazzy car if you can't play around sometimes?

Over the next week, the two drove west, stopping where it suited them and visiting various sites along the way. One night, they had decided to camp on the side of the road in the middle of a desert, instead of trying to find a hotel. Jubilee and Angelo lay stretched out on a sleeping bag, looking up at the night sky, the stars intense without the light from cities to compete.

Sighing softly, she made up her mind, she would tell him the truth. "Ange?"


"I want you to know."

Silent for a moment, Angelo shook his head uncertainly. "You sure Jubes?."

"Yeah, here.." joining hands she created a link, pictures flooding his mind, one after the other. Angelo's fist clenched involuntarily as darkness, fear and brutal deaths invaded his mind.

"They...they were going to ...hurt me and then I got angry. I killed them. Their blood is on my hands."

"Amor, c'mere." Angelo cradled her softly in his arms, wishing that there was some way he could wash the fear and hurt from her soul. Snuggling down, she quickly sank into a dreamless sleep, nightmares banished by the arms holding her. This was one role Angelo was used to. Ever since his mutant powers had emerged he had been the friend, the buddy, the big brother to girls. He was realistic, he knew that no girl would ever love him. But, as he held the small, sweet smelling girl in his arms, he could pretend.


-a graveyard in California, later that week-

Jubilee walked to the large, grey stones, pausing to breathe in the sweet scent of the tulips she was carrying. They had been buried under a large oak, it's wide branches shading the two spots, protecting it from the sun.

She knelt between the two mounds, placing a bunch of flowers at each place. Sitting there, she opened her mind, able to feel the faint traces of psi-presences, lingering on after death. Touching each briefly, she moved on and on until she felt two personalities that had the familiarity of home, love and warmth.

Choking with tears, Jubilee felt waves of love, pride, and tenderness wash over her, warming her like nothing else had in years. The black bitterness that threatened to tear up her soul broke apart under the barrage of affection. She felt light, breathless as she felt her heart begin to mend, taking away the pain of her scars and hurt. Tears streaming down her cheeks, she produced an imagine of the man standing a hundred yards behind her on the hill. It was a man who was brave, honorable, sweet, loving, fun, strong, and honest and one she loved dearly. Approval and liking came for the young man, and a hopeful image white lace and bells. Laughing now, Jubilee put a hand to her cheek to hide her flaming face, *Not yet but someday.*

The presences began to fade, and after sending one more message of love, left. Still crying, Jubilee dropped to the ground, laying her head on her mother's grave, reaching out to touch her father's. The tears soaked the earth, joining the many others that had dropped there.

Angelo, uncertain of whether to leave her alone or comfort her, finally gave in and ran to her side. Kneeling beside her, he carefully lifted her up to face him, surprised to see a smile on her face. " Me amor, are you okay?"

Jubilee looked at into the dark brown eyes, flecked with green which were gazing at her with concern. Her heart lurched at his inadvertent slip. For the first time in years she felt free, strong enough to be by herself and vulnerable to be with someone else. She knew that she could stand alone, but would never have to.

"And how, Ange." Pulling his face down to hers, she softly kissed him. Feeling him grin, she reached up and pulled him closer, registering nothing else but a single bird chirping in the tree and the smell of tulips.