He hated balls. Hated being in rooms full of other people, hated being surrounded by the scents and sounds of the groups. He only tolerated it for the Professor’s sake – besides, it was only once a year. Once a year, he had to put on a monkey suit, clip his sideburns and leave his cigars in his bedroom to stand around and drink lukewarm champagne as the wealthy elite of dozens of nations mingled together and spent fortunes on items that Xavier auctioned off to raise money for the school year.
He tugged uncomfortably on his tie and made his way to the balcony across the room. He absolutely had to get out of the ballroom or he might stifle to death. A scent caught his nose and he turned towards it immediately: a cigarette.
“Want one?” a high, sweet voice offered, and he found himself staring down at five feet of lushly curved blonde. With the cigarette she was offering him in one hand and the dress she was wearing, she was absolutely perfect in that one moment.
“Tsukino Usagi,” she offered, smiling as he snatched the cigarette and pulled out his lighter.
“Logan,” he answered. Her name indicated she was Asian, perhaps Japanese, though she certainly didn’t look it. “I don’t think you’ve ever been to one of these before,” he muttered, making idle conversation as a thank-you for the smoke now curling through his lungs.
“I haven’t been,” she answered quickly. “My husband used to, but he passed away earlier in the year, and when the invitation came, I decided to let Xavier know in person. They were – close.”
“Your husband was a student here?” he asked, making a leap in logic. She nodded.
“Yes, healing abilities and explosives,” she responded, smiling slightly. “It was very useful when I’d cut my knee.”
“I’ll bet,” he answered. “Do you have abilities?”
She laughed at that. “Yes, but not in the way you mean,” she said mysteriously. He tried desperately to remember students with those abilities but could only recall one: Chiba Mamoru, a Japanese orphan that had passed through the school years ago. And Mamoru had been some kind of masked superhero in Japan when he returned. And from what he could recall about said superhero, he had a female companion.
“Actually, I think I remember Mamoru-san,” Logan said. “And his – alter-ego. So I think I might know exactly what you’re getting at.” She smiled at him in surprise and nodded.
“Very good, Logan,” she laughed.
“What do you say we get out of here and get a real drink?” he asked. She laughed.
“I say absolutely. These shoes are killing me and I’m starving.”