Passing Time, Bringing Dawn

by Berzerker_prime

Summary: The day starts off easily enough for the Mutants at Xavier's School for the Gifted.  It's been one week since the freak accident at the High School cafeteria, and Kitty's kept everything to herself, assuming the timeline has been straightened out.  But when Cerebro gets an odd reading, the X-Men are in for a clash between ages... literally.  Sequal to Passing Time, Fighting Night.

    Well!  Here we go again, ne?  ^_^;
    Just couldn't keep my hands off this story line for long.  Meant to work some on some other stories for a bit, but this one refused to go away and, as everyone knows, you gotta LISTEN to the muse when she strike-er-visits, else she never return.  So, here I am.
    In the regular "current time" timeline, it's been a week since the spontanious Chrono Hole that sent Kitty 15 years into the future, then spit her back out again a split second later.
    Oops!  Muse is yelling at me for being so long-winded.  ^_^;
    Enjoy, minna-san.  And remember; fanfic authors like feedback!  ^_^


     Once again, he was running.  Just like always, he was running.  The three others were behind him and countless others, the enemy, were behind them.
     But why?  If it had been any other time that he had already experienced, he wouldn’t be so perplexed, but this time it shouldn’t have been happening.  It was supposed to be over, all of it.
     Dammit, he wasn’t supposed to exist as he was now any more!
     More of the enemy blocked the way ahead of them, raising weapons and taking aim at him and his three companions, so he darted down the nearest side corridor, making certain the others followed him.
     “K!  K!  What’s happening in there!” a voice shouted into his ear.
     He skidded to a halt just short of the wall of a dead end, crashing into it when at least one of his companions crashed into him.  They disentangled themselves from each other and turned back toward the main corridor, only to find it blocked by several unfriendly faces, each loaded to the teeth with weapons.
     “Morlocks!  To me!” he called to his three companions as one of them let loose a barrage of fire.  At once, three hands clamped down on his shoulders and he kicked his talents to life, allowing the smell of brimstone to encompass all four of them.
     After only a few moments, they all found themselves falling in some dark, unfriendly underworld.  When they hit bottom of this pit, they found that they landed in something liquid, acrid smelling, and on the whole quite cold and unpleasant.
     Fire Bomber was the first to get her head above the surface, followed shortly by both Forge and Toad.  Fire Bomber lit a fireball in her hand in order to get a look at their surroundings.  They looked about and found that they were swimming in the vast, unsightly river of sewer sludge.  Forge and Fire Bomber looked about, counting heads.
     “Where’s Nightcrawler?” Fire Bomber demanded.
     “I got ‘im!”  Toad called into the cavern of tile and cement, hauling a semi-conscious Nightcrawler to the surface, coughing and sputtering.  “Man, he don’t look too good.”
     “Everyone outta the river,” Fire Bomber ordered, “we gotta keep moving.”
     “Yeah, but where?” Forge asked, climbing out of the sewage and helping Toad get Nightcrawler onto the dry ledge.  “Where’d the ‘Crawler drop us?”
     Fire Bomber held her fireball up to the wall and searched until she found a small, intricate graffiti tag.  She ran her finger over it for a moment, searching her memory.  “We’re under drop point nemesis,” she stated.
     “Nemesis!” Toad exclaimed.  “But that’s almost three miles!”
     “No wonder K’s out of it,” Fire Bomber mused, “okay, let’s get moving.  And Forge, contact Blizzard and tell him what happened.”
     “Yeah, sure,” he responded, “as soon as I figure it out.  What the hell are we still doing here?”
     Thoughtfully, Fire Bomber hauled Nightcrawler onto her shoulder, relieved to hear a small moan from him.  “I’m not sure, but… I’m remembering something else, now.  Something I don’t think I knew before.  Kinda like something I’d forgotten up to now.  But we don’t have time to deal with it now.  Let’s get a move on.”
     And so, with that, four battle-weary Morlocks began moving through the sewers of New York City.

     Fifteen years in their past, in a place and time much more pleasant and storybook, a group of high schoolers were just returning to their home.  It was a sprawling estate on Bayville’s Graymalkin drive, complete with mansion, pool, six car garage, and secret underground Mutant training facility.
     Yes, storybook is the word for it.
     Scott Summers drove his sports car up the driveway and into the garage and as soon as he had stopped the car’s movement, the six teens jumped out of the car and rushed for the door into the mansion, each one of them with food on their minds.  However, as soon as Even, first in line, had opened the door, they found Logan blocking the hallway.  He had that look in his eye.
     It was only an instant before all the teens had turned around and started to go off in all directions, looking for other ways into the house.
     “Hold it,” Logan ordered, inducing sighs in the group.
     “C’mon, Mister Logan,” Kitty pleaded, “it’s the weekend.  You can’t, like, seriously believe we wanna do a Danger Room run right away.”
     “Yeah, man,” Evan agreed with his fellow freshman, “can’t it at least wait until tomorrow?”
     “Or at least until after a small snack, ja?” Kurt put in.
     “Yeah,” Jean voiced, “the school cafeteria’s been down for repairs for the past week and all we’ve had are brown bag lunches.”
     “No,” Logan stated, “you all begged and pleaded with me all week on the grounds that you all had tests at school.  You all agreed to Friday evening, so here we are.  Get a move on.”  He spotted Evan ducking into a corner behind the car.  “That includes you, Porcupine.  C’mon.”
     Grumbling all the way, the group sauntered into the mansion and down the hallways toward the Danger Room, Logan on their heels the whole way, acting like a sheepdog, making certain he didn’t lose a single teen on the way.  They passed by the study, where Professor Xavier was deeply engulfed in a book.  He looked up as the grouchy group passed by, giving a wry smile as they passed.  He buried himself in his text again and lost himself in it.  It was about an hour later when a buzzer went off, accompanied by a blinking red light.  Xavier frowned and put his book down before wheeling himself out of the study and down to the end of the hallway.  He touched a panel, revealing a hidden door, and entered the hidden alcove of the Cerebro computer.  He slipped on the headgear to assist its search, then called up the findings.
     “Three Mutant signatures detected,” Cerebro chirped out.  “Two unknown, one identified.”
     “Display identified Mutant,” Xavier commanded, his curiosity piquing.  A familiar picture popped up on the screen.
     “Location; Bayville, New York.  Name: Kurt Wagner.  Mutant identified as: Nightcrawler.”
     “Are the other two signatures with him?”
     Xavier raised an eyebrow.  “Where in Bayville?” he asked the computer.
     “Location: 2103 Northport avenue.  Bayville High School.”
     “Strange,” Xavier mused to himself, taking the headgear off.  He pressed a button on the console, activating the intercom.  “Logan, are you there?”
     There was a pause for a moment, then Logan’s voice came through the speaker.  “Right here, Charles.”
     “Are all the students still in the Danger Room with you?”
     “Yeah, they’re all still here.  And they’re gonna be here until they get this drill right.”  It was obvious he was talking not only to Xavier.
     The professor considered for a moment, then sighed inwardly.  “We may have a situation brewing,” he told Logan, “bring the students to my study, please.”

     “I swear, Professor, I vas in ze Danger Room ze whole time,” Kurt professed, both of his three-fingered hands spread out in front of him, “I didn’t ‘port anywhere besides in zere.”
     “I believe you, Kurt,” Xavier stated, his fingers steepled in thought, “that isn’t the issue, in this case.  The issue is that I don’t know what is happening over at the school, but there are three Mutants we must find there.”
     “Do we have identities for any of them?” Scott asked.
     “Assuming the one is not, if fact, Kurt, no,” Xavier said, “which is what makes this mission dangerous.”
     “Nothin’ we can’t handle, Charles,” Logan stated.
     “Hey,” Rogue chimed up, casting a sidelong glance to Logan, “if we can handle yah trainin’, we can handle anythin’.”

     It was nearly six o’clock by the time the entire team dumped out of the X Van in the more secluded back parking lot of the High School.  The Sun was well on its way to setting, casting long, dark shadows in the orange light.  The school was quiet, save for a few chirping birds in the trees of the grounds and out and about picking at various foodstuffs discarded by students, both in and out of the trash cans.
     “All right,” Xavier said, regarding the group, “once you’re inside the school, split into three groups.  Cyclops, Rogue, and Spyke will search the feildhouse and gymnasium area.  Wolverine and Shadowcat, take the west wing classrooms.  Storm, Nightcrawler, and Jean, you take the east wing.  Contact me the moment you find anything.”
     There were nods of assent all around and it took only a few moments for Shadowcat and Nightcrawler to get everyone into the building.  Xavier sat back in his chair and waited, opening his sixth sense and listening to whatever might come, either from his people or others.  In the meantime, he contemplated Cerebro’s readouts.  Was it possible, he wondered, to fool the computer into thinking one Mutant was another?  Such a thing seemed almost impossible.
     His thoughts were interrupted by that characteristic combination explosion and sucking sound, that “bamf,” that signaled Kurt’s entrance.  It had occurred above him and there was a shaking of branches in the tree he was sitting under.  He was about to say something when a dark figure dropped down in front of him, landing on all fours, then standing on two animal-like feet.  From the mental signal Xavier had gotten, he had expected Nightcrawler and was about to launch into a speech about sneaking up on one’s professor when he caught sight of the person standing in front of him.
     This Nightcrawler was older, to be sure.  In whatever time had passed, he had managed to put on a few more muscles which shown through the sleeves of the modified uniform he was wearing.  But the most distinguishing difference was an overt lack of an eye on the left side of this Nightcrawler’s face.
     “Xavier,” he said to the telepath, “zere’s no time to be confused.  Ve need to talk, now.”


Yup!  Things aren't as cleanly worked out as they were supposed to be.  Humdingers to follow in the next chapter!  ^_~
Til then, everyone!
Ja ne!  ^_^