1964-08-14 - Not Who We Once Were
Summary: Moira and Xavier have a date by the lake. Some hard truths about their past years are revealed.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
moira xavier 

Charles decided to show Moira around the campus, eager to show off the changes. And… well, to spend some more time with her. The fact that it was the early evening, with the sun setting against the lake? Purely a coincidence.

No. Really.


Charles, ever the gentleman, has his arm out for Moira, if she wanted it. He gestures a bit, "… so /then/, there's this massive explosion, and I find out that Jean actually swapped Scott's ruby glasses for regular sunglasses." He makes a "boom" gesture with his hands, "The silliest insurance claim I think I ever filed with Damage Control."

"…If that boy wasn't half in love with her, I suspect he'd have killed her by now for that mess." Moira states with an affectionate sort of smirk. She's left her cane behind, which means she'e heavily taken his arm, definitely needing some support and balance to walk without it. But she trusts him implicitly, that much is clear, and she's happily limping along at his side, basking in the excuse to be just this close with him.

"But really, Charles… the school has come so… So far. I was so scared you'd never get here." Part of the reason she stayed away for so long, no doubt.

Charles nods, "I know… I worried about it a lot myself." He smiles, supporting Moira easily, and gladly, as he looks at her, "It would be nice if Scott would just get over his shyness and ask Jean out sometime." He looks a bit wry, "I've tried dropping subtle hints, but maybe I should just make it a teamwork exercise instead. That the poor boy might get." He loves Scott and Jean like they were his kids, so he doesn't mind teasing a bit now and again. Then he looks over at Moira, and lightly squeezes her hand in his, "It… means a lot, Moira, to hear you say that."

The woman's hand squeezes his back, but she shakes her head slightly, "I was barely here a few months, not even a year. I… I didn't really do anythimg. YOU created all of this. Hell… my being here risked it all. I always was so scared I… I brought destruction down on all of you. That it'd come back to haunt us, sometime. I still worry, even being here now…" She admits, looking from his eyes out to the beautiful lake, the serenity of all ofit.

Charles shakes his head, "It was going to come anyway, Moira, sooner or later. That's how the world works." He sighs and gently draws Moira closer, hugging her gently as his hand slides around her waist. "You inspired me to do this. It's not just my dream, Moira. It's ours." He rests his head against hers, going quiet as he watches the sunset with her, a content sigh passing from his lips.

Silence lingers for a few moments, Moira leaning against him, content to watch the sun and feel the relaxation practically radiating off of him as they lean there together. "No…Charles, I had this dream, hope for it… But this is your place. Your school. You built it all. I… feel like I've missed everything, in truth. I wish I could have done more. I… wish I could do more now. I don't even know how to make myself fit…You don't need me here any more. You've done amazing things…" She whispers against his cheek quietly, but the years she's missed, clearly it stings.

Charles says, simply, "You're wrong, Moira." He glances back, meeting her eyes as he places his hands on her shoulders, "The school might not need you… but I do." He smiles gently, tilting his head as he just says, "I need you, Moira. Even if you're not working here. Even if you're at Columbia. Even if I need to commute down to see you. I've always needed you… and I never realized how much until you were gone."

Silence lingers another few heartbeats, Moira's pale eyes flickering from the lake back to his handsome features instead. She studies him, concern painted across her slightly older face. Her free hand comes up, gently tracing down his cheek as she tries to practice the better part of wisdom and control. But it's nearly impossible. "…is it worth the risk? Really? They…still watch me, you know? Ask me for advice, sometimes… Not near so much now that Joe's dead but… I'm not totally free of them. We could bring down everything again."

Charles smiles a little, "Let's just say… I think I have a way around that, if it ever became an issue." He gently strokes Moira's cheek with his fingers, "But even if it was, I think it's worth the risk. I, we missed out on too much of our life together Moira. And I don't want to miss out on any more. I don't have regrets, but I don't want to miss anymore time."

The touch of his fingertips on her cheek make Moira's breath pause, happily, for a moment or two. She just shuts her eyes, turning her head into the caress of his palm and letting it relax so many of her doubts away. "…I hope you never have to do that again. I'll have to be careful coming here. I don't think I should return full time — no matter how much I want to. And I do want to…" She admits quietly, eyes still not open, just the soft patter of her breath against his hand with each word.

Charles whispers, "We can work with that… eventually, if you wanted to…" He trails off, moving closer as his lips hover close to hers, his voice very quiet as he murmurs, "Whatever we need to do, we can do, to make this work. I… I love you, Moira. I have since the first moment we met. That's never changed." And she can feel it, too, as his power makes it hard to keep from broadcasting his thoughts about that, though he keeps it mostly in check. His feelings are too hard to hide, however.

As he says he loves her, Moira's eyes flicker back open, gazing up to his gaze, studying that handsome face again. A touch of blush flares on her cheeks, now almost feverish beneath his touch, but she's smiling. "I…I loved you too, Charles. I…I think I still do. It's just… so much changed. Life… changed. We've both changed. Do we even still know each other? Can we say that we do…after all this time?" She asks gently.

Charles hmms, "Well, Moira? There's only one way to find out." He then kisses her, very gently, then pulls back a little, "I don't think we've changed that much. But there's one way to really find out." And then there's an echo in Moira's thoughts, as Charles offers a link. That old link, an invitation… and while has the power to make a link without permission, he would still never do that.

For the first time ever, there is a flash of fear from Moira when he reaches out like that. She does kiss him, savouring it, remembering the happier times, but she pulls away a bit more when he reaches for her mind. The emotions across her face go from fear, to guilt, to a whole handful of other things, none of them comfortable and none of them about him. "…Charles…I… I don't know that you truly want to know… I… I've done things… these last few years…" There is heavier shame now, more than actual fear.

Charles nods, "If you don't want to, then I won't force the issue. You know that, but… Moira? I promise that there's nothing you could have done to make me ashamed of you." He smiles gently, a reassuring expression as he murmurs, "It's entirely up to you."

There is clear fear in her eyes, her jaw set quietly as she looks at him and tries to decide how to proceed, heart beating a touch to hard in her throat. "…you'd find out eventually. Maybe it's better now, before we… get in too deep again. I just… I'm not the woman you think I am, Charles. I'm not the young, innocent woman you fell in love with… you have to know that." Moira insists quietly, before exhaling a breath, letting down what little guard she has.

Charles gently places his hand on her cheek, "Moira…" And with that, suddenly he's in her mind, and she's in his… the two of them seeming to stand on a plateau, overlooking a sea of memories for them both. Moira would no longer be limping, as that's a trait of the physical, and Charles looks around the vast ocean of their minds. "What happened to you Moira?" He asks, his presence strong, but muted, a gentle touch that belies the power that he has in this area.

It's not a pleasant journey. Even as he asks what happened, the flashes start coming. The arguments with Joe, the progressive violence. Occasional drinking but, in the main, it was about control. She was smarter than her husband and he couldn't handle that, so he had to control her in other ways. Moira being too smart and stubborn to just take it. She fought back. Things got worse. The night he tossed her down the stairs, the blinding pain… months of rehab. The quiet determination in Moira's mind that it will never happen again. The quiet planning — how much biology she knew, how well studied… The next time they fougbt, she hitting that vein in just the right place, cutting off blood flow to his brain. Killing the man, looked like a stroke, an accident… But she did it.

Charles looks at Moira, and then he opens himself to her, letting her see what she's done. They were both so young, but then… Korea. The War. Serving on the front lines. Locking down his telepathy, and strengthening his mental shields to unbelievable power. A mysterious sniper chasing him through the jungles. Charles forced to kill, or be killed. Rescuing some with his search and rescue team. The Good Shepherd. Not rescuing others.

And then he sees what Moira does, and gently embraces her in the link, "Moira, the young me, he might not have understood… but I do. You were defending yourself, Moira. There's no sin in that." There was a flash of anger when he pushed her down the stairs, but he doesn't leave the link. He doesn't judge her.

He just… understands. And he accepts this. His only regret? That he wasn't there for her then.

The woman takes all of this in, moisture at her eyes, a few silent tears escaping down her face in reality, even as they are both still lost in his mind scape. The guilt over it all is almost choking for MOira, even if she was justified. She has never killed before, will probably never kill again, and has yet to figure this out in her head or heart. She holds onto him tighter, physically, as she sees his time in the war, "…God…Charles…I'm so sorry…"

Charles hugs Moira tightly in the real world, the link broadening and deepening between them as he whispers, "It isn't your fault, Moira. You defended yourself. I see it in your mind. And Moira?" He smiles very gently, and kisses her forehead, whispering, "I love you. That hasn't changed. I don't think it could."

"I…I love you too. I don't… I really don't know how you love someone like…me. What I did. That wasn't war, Charles, that was murder. Cold blooded, plotted, premeditated murder. If… anyone… anyone ever knew, I'd be in jail forever…" Moira admits, tears still on the edge of her voice, breath half ragged as she tries to keep them back, but she's been holding this secret in so long.

Charles hugs Moira close, whispering, "You /defended/ yourself. Joe wasn't going to stop until either one of you was dead. And you knew that." He sighs, running his hand through her hair, holding her tight, letting her feel his love, his support, through the link they have.

The brush of his hand through her hair, the tightening of his arms, it all helps her to relax a bit more, osme of the worst shame floating away. The guilt will still be there, but the shame isn't so fierce. She turns her head, pressing another, deeper kiss into his mouth. This one not cut off by the fear of what might happen. She wants to kiss him, remember what it is to love, to be happy…

Charles returns the kiss, sliding his hand through her hair, a soft moan escaping his lips as he feels her love, her emotions through the link. The one advantage of being a telepath… one can "talk" while deep in a kiss, even with his eyes closed. "You could spend the night, if you wished." His lips curl into a bit of a smile in the kiss, his own desires pretty apparent in that regard.

That conversation, mid kiss, really is a nice advantage, and Charles can probably feel her lips curling up in a bit more of a smile against his mouth. She mentally echoes back, "I…think that would be nice. THe semester isn't starting for another few weeks. I could spend a few days before going back to the city, really…" All the while, she's still etting him steal her breath in that kiss.

Charles grins a bit wider in the kiss, thinking, "I think a vacation here at the school will be good for you." He then breaks the kiss, only to scoop Moira up in his arms with a surprising shift of his grip, cradling her in his arms as he looks down, now speaking verbally, "I think I know a place where you could spend the night, m'lady." And he's even talking in that silly quasi-English accent again, winking at Moira as he leads the way back towards the Mansion proper.

The woman laughs freely as he scoops her up like that, cheeks still wet with tears but her smile is coming far more easily. Moira doesn't protest, she just wraps her arms around the back of his neck to help counter balance her light weight and allows him to scoop her off towards the mansion again. "You are…entirely ridiculous, Charles Xavier… but I'm not complaining. Take me back to your castle, my dear." SHe winks at him.

Charles grins, "I can afford to be ridiculous, Moira, I have tenure." The advantage of being the headmaster, after all! Carrying her up the path, he chuckles, "Besides, what's the point in having a castle if I can't sweep the fair maiden of my heart off her feet?" He winks back at Moira, and makes a mental note to cancel his appointments for… well, probably the rest of the week.

Jean can use the practice being Acting Headmaster, anyway…

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