Gambit & Rogue: Illusions Part 1: Story Time With Tim

Greetings and salutations, faithful readers! Welcome back to another week of Story Time With Tim! We’re going to do a little test here with one of my novellas. Keeping on pace with the previous Story Time With Tim, we’re going to sample a novella I wrote some years ago. Back in 2001, some four years after I first wrote that initial Gambit script, I revisited the concept of the story and decided to try my hand at a full on fan fiction rendition of the story line I was developing. Unfortunately, I never finished the story itself but most of it in general was finished and is in decent enough condition. I believe there will be three parts to it, but if a fourth is required, I’ll definitely be doing it that way.

So, this will be part one of the GnR Illusions storyline and I hope it’ll help demonstrate the ways in which my writing developed during these early years of my attempt at writing full time (spoiler alert: I’m still trying).

Anyhow, let’s not take too much longer on this. Without further ado, your weekly Story Time With Tim!

GAMBIT & ROGUE: ILLUSIONS

I

Black clouds plow their way through the midnight sky. No stars or light of moon do these clouds allow to pass through. And it is as in fury that these clouds let loose the wrath and power of lightning and the bellowing roar of rolling thunder. Howling winds bend and sway the standing bayou trees far below the nightmare chaos. As well, too, the river swells and beats the nearby shore. Yet, only with the burning lightning could one make out these events as they transpire amidst the eternal dark of this treacherous night.

And what fool would dare brave such a thing as nature’s fury? For even the renowned bayou ‘gators have taken shelter from the increasing storm. Yet, even so, two lost souls have found their way to the bayou’s center. Lost, mind you, in life and soul. For this country, both know well.

Two boys, not much older than ten, scurry along the bayou bath barely visible. They have come here through this storm for a reason…though only one of the boys knows why for sure. The first boy, the eldest, is taller than the second by only a few inches and as blonde headed as blonde heads can be. This makes it easier for the second boy to track his movements.

Following the first boy, comes the second, dark, brownish red hair and piercing blue eyes. This boy searches the darkness in vain hoping to catch some glimpse of what the elder boy had brought him here for.

The boys pass through several large and olden bayou trees as they make their way to the river’s edge not too far away now. The younger boy makes nary a sound, though who could hear for the thunder? Even so, the younger boy can himself still hear his elder’s footsteps as the blonde boy tramples hard upon mud and branches and rocks and other of nature’s refuse.

“Cousin…we almost dere?”

With slight impatience and eagerness, the younger boy inquires of his elder this time-honored query. The blonde boy responds not as they continue towards the undisclosed destination. The younger boy feels the chill running up his spine as they delve deeper through the giant trees. This chill he can’t quite figure out…even in spite of the fiercely blowing wind.

“Look dere! We almost dere!”

Excitement resonates in the eldest boy’s voice. His finger points the way. And the younger boy looks. Barely visible can he make out what seems to be a boat dock. And again the elder boy speaks.

“Go ahead. Take a peek! You got betta eyes den me. It’s jus’ like I said.”

“I still don’ unnerstand, cousin. Why dey try to get a ship into dese parts?”

Honest eyes from the younger boy seek out an answer from his elder. The elder merely shrugs with a dubious response.

“Don’ know…maybe dey’s be runnin’ coco out ‘ere. I heard once dat dey was. But, I’m tellin’ ya, de ship be right dere.”

“Can’t believe dey run a ship ashore like dat.”

“Believe it! I right behind you to de edge, cuz.”

And so, the younger of the two takes the lead as they head out unto the old, worn dock. The boy doesn’t take notice of his elder having his hand behind his back. And as they creep out unto the dock even further, the younger boy doesn’t see his elder take from behind his back a long and silver dagger.

“I still don’ see…”

Turning around, the younger boy is cut off in mid sentence as he finds his cousin bearing down on him with the long blade. In a swift movement, the elder pushes the blade down from above his head towards the younger boy’s face. However, the younger one grabs hold of the silver blade between the palms of his hands. A terrified expression of disbelief crosses the young boy’s visage. His blue eyes seek out and find the hatred emanating from his cousin’s deep green eyes.

“Why, cousin!? What’s dis all ’bout!?”

The elder boy gazes down towards his inferior. In his mind, the younger boy is nothing more than genetic garbage and he doesn’t mind telling him so.

“Don’ call me ‘Cousin’! You ain’t notin’ ta me! Jus’ cuz Jean-Luc felt pity fer ya, don’ mean a t’ing to any o’us! As for why…”

A look of evil delight plays across the elder boy’s face and he takes great pleasure in informing his ‘cousin’ of his ill intent.

“I gonna be joinin’ de assassin’s guild! Dey take me! I’m tired of dese weak an’ cowardly t’ieves! But afore I can be one o’dem…I gotta kill ‘family’…an’, well, ain’ noone gonna miss YOU!”

With all his might, the elder boy pushes against the strain of the struggling younger boy. It is a frantic standoff. One that can only end in death. The younger boy, only wants the boy he considered ‘family’, to go away. It has been years since the younger boy has felt this kind of terror. Not since the streets and the gangs he used to run with. Back before the days he pick-pocketed Jean-Luc Lebeau, patriarch of the Thieves Guild of New Orleans.

And now here he was, struggling to stay alive yet again in his already seemingly long, yet short, life. This thought, this feeling of survival, stuck in his head as he felt something deep within….give. And it was then, that he noticed the glow.

A strange, glowing radiation crept from the boy’s hand and into the blade grasped firmly between his palms. The elder boy took notice of this and began to widen his eyes…but still, the elder pushed harder against the younger boy. As if in dramatic fashion, lightning splayed across the bayou river illuminating the two boy’s forms. For a split instance, their struggling shadows were cast upon the shore of the opposite coast. While on their side, their forms were illuminated by the glowing form of the younger boy.

The glowing radiation leapt from the young boy’s eyes then forcing some sort of objects away from his face, from his eyes, in a disintegrating spray. The remnants of which passed by the older boy’s eyes and he watched the individual particles dance away into the fierce wind and he began to feel the jolt. The jolt of energy building up in the young boy splurged forward and through the silver blade and through the elder boy’s hands and through the elder boy’s arms and into his body…and from there the energy split and pulsated into his pelvis and into his legs and into his feet while the other split entered his neck and into his head and rattled his brain.

Alarmed and afraid, the younger boy could only stare at his panicking and yet still attacking cousin. The younger boy’s glowing red eyes pierced the darkness surrounding his face and the elder only stared right back. The elder felt as if his whole body were being bore into by those red, glowing eyes as if Satan himself were looking right into his soul. and then he tried to scream.

Nothing.

Energy spent and released while the younger boy looked onto his cousin attempting to scream. That scream never came as the elder’s entire body, molecule by molecule, expanded and released and dissipated into the air in much the same way as the younger boy’s contacts had done only moments before. Contacts given him by Jean-Luc, to hide his alarming red eyes. And then it was, that the red-eyed boy stood alone with his hands and arms still grasping a blade that was no longer there and attached to an elder boy who was no longer there. Nothing were these things now but dust in an increasing wind.

And panic arose in the younger boy. He slowly inched back from where his cousin had stood. Or at least, the boy he had considered a cousin, now vanished and gone. He turned and ran with words on his lips…

“Cou…cou…COUSIN!”

And off he ran into the dark and into the forest. Further and further, back the way they had come. When it was he was several hundred feet away and then several hundred meters…he smashed into an object, solid and sturdy yet somehow he had not been injured. The young boy looked up to see what tree he had smacked and saw not a tree but a man.

“Mi…Mister?”

And the man smiled a sinister grin and stared down at the small young boy. While upon the man’s forehead, there glowed a bright and red triangular object. The boy remembered no more.

*****

Red eyes awaken in the dark and immediately a form sets up and gasps for air. Covers are tossed back from the horrid dream the dreamer had dreamt and upon two feet the dreamer gets.

Quel l’enfer? I haven’t had that nightmare since I was a small boy. Oh…God my head. The form stretches and flexes and works the kinks out of dormant muscles and sighs a breath of relief that the nightmare is ended. Thinking and considering, the person wonders whether to just go back to sleep or slip out into the night again. For night is obviously still full force outside the partially opened window. A cool breeze comes in through its cracked sliver. Where was I last night? I can’t remember.

A hand props against a chin upon a silhouetted figure against the moonlit curtains covering the window. Gently that curtain flows by the cracked window’s sliver, the gust of wind suddenly picking up outside.

Hmmm…de last t’ing I remember was de…trial? Non! An anxious feeling crosses the person’s mind and body and Gambit turns towards his dresser near the window in the spacious room. I remember leading de X-Men! Yes. That is my last recollection. But wait? How did I get back from Antartica? Rogue said she searched…He stops short of the mirrored dresser and stares through the dark trying to make out his form. Hesitant suddenly of the lamp on the dresser’s corner.

But did she really? A fly by was more like it! NON! It WAS a search! Really? Den why are you arguin’ wit’ yerself? I…? Gambit stops short in thought and flips on the lamp. Glowing red eyes stare back from the mirror. But Gambit is not there. Rogue stares back at herself in the mirror and tries to cope with the sudden loss. No!! Dis…this…where? OH god! Her bare hands go to her face and Rogue slowly backs away from the mirror and sits upon a chair close by.

Pulling her hands from her eyes, Rogue looks around her room. One of the largest of rooms in the mansion. She lucked out on getting it when Warren finally left. And now, she’s wondering when she herself shall finally return.

Slow…I thought…but I was Remy! Uh… Rogue performs a quick inspection of her body to assure herself that not all transformations has she acquired. She finds that she is still a ‘she’ and then her mind wanders to just how exactly her mutant capabilities allow her to take on ‘physical’ manifestations of certain other mutant’s physical assets. Then just as quickly, her mind drifts back into one query…

“Remy…where are you?”

And there you go! Come back next week for part two of Gambit & Rogue Illusions. And I hope you enjoyed this particular offering even if it wasn’t the best ever written. Growing as a writer is a slow process. It’s taken decades for me to actually produce a fully realized novel and I feel confident in my ability to grow even more as I go along! I do hope you’re enjoying these stories and hope you’ll come back next week for more.

Read to you again soon.

~Timothy S Purvis

While you’re here, check out all of my published work at Timothy S Purvis, my Amazon Kindle author’s page where you can even buy some paperbacks of my work if you’re so inclined!

Also, here’s a book I published over the last year that I think you should check out!

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