The End of Innocence pt 2


I..... I have been here..... for as long as I can remember. I would give anything to see the sun and the moon again. To see him again.

<<end interlude>>

It's so beautiful here, with the ocean waves crashing against the cliffs. So lush and green, with flowers in full bloom. So *why* do I feel such a feeling of dread. Why do I want to leave here so badly, why do I hate Rio de Janeiro?

I met Cecilia Reyes, Marrow, and Maggot today. Reyes gave me a rather hateful look, and then she left the room saying that she rather Zero Tolerance won, than work with a monster like me. Storm and Iceman took off after her. Marrow seemed uncaring either way, and just said that she had heard a great deal about me, and wanted to see if the "legends" were true. Maggot?? What kind of name is Maggot anyway? He seemed a little to accepting, a little off. He knew who I really was, and yet?


Storm: Cecilia, if you're going to be a part of the X-Men, you have to learn to get along with others. Despite his past, Joseph is one of us now.

Cecilia: Joseph?!? The last I heard that monster was Magneto. How can you work with that monster?? Don't you realize that he could turn around and decide to kill us all at any given moment?

Storm: If that should happen we will deal with it. But for right now, we have a chance to utilize his power for good, Goddess forbid, we should try to do that.

Cecilia: Oh, you do that.

Storm: He has been very willing to atone for his past sins.

Cecilia: Bully for him, I don't cotton to mutant terrorists, myself. Remember, I DON'T want to be here in the first place. It's not my fault Zero Tolerance happened. I had a perfectly good life, before Bastion wrecked it. I don't want to be a part of you're little Pollyana group. I DON'T have any choice in the matter do I?? If I leave you, I'm dead, that's all there is to it.

Iceman: We know Cecilia, and I'm sorry, there's nothing we can do. At least your still alive, unlike........

Cecilia: I tried my best to save.....

Both: We know, it's not your fault.

Maggot's POV:

"Tell Gardener things went better than expected here. I've come face to face with Erik, and so far he hasn't recognized me. He does seem to remember something about Rio though. I think it worked, I think his memories are returning."

"Yes, yes. I will keep you posted. I plan to make sure he and I are on the same team. If that doesn't happen?? Well, I will just have to handle it now won't I? Talk to ya later, Shakara."

Gambit's POV:

<<watching Maggot>>

Funny, you look awfully familiar to me homme, wonder where I've seen ya before. Gambit never forgets a face, and somehow, I think ya have reasons for joining the X-Men tha' doesn't involve heroics.

Maybe I can ask Greg 'bout ya.

Joseph: I was wondering...........? If I could...............?

Storm: What?

Rogue: Don' be 'fraid to speak ya mind sugah.

Joseph: I've been remembering about Auschwitz lately, I was wondering if I could go there, try to....

Storm: Joseph, I really don't think that is a good idea. For one thing Bastion might expect you to go there, and for another it is to soon for you to.....

Joseph: Remember my past! You are worried I'll become Magneto again aren't you?!? Do you think everything I have learned these past months will be forgotten! I need to go! I have to try and reconcile with what happened there! If I don't, how can I ever be sure Magneto/I won't be a threat to anyone ever again? I was only trying to get your blessing, and maybe, company for the trip. Do you really think you can stop me from going!!

Rogue: Ah will go wit' ya Joseph. Ah jus' hope ya don' live ta regret it.

Storm: I just hope *we* don't live to regret it. Ok, you have my permission to go. Just be careful, and make sure no one follows you back here.

<someone else>

Hmmmmm.......... My dear Ororo, you have much more to worry about than Joseph becoming Magneto again. Much more................

Joseph: What? I thought I heard someone talking to you, Ororo?

Storm: I didn't hear anything. Rogue?

Rogue: Nope, not a word. Could be jus' the wind playin' tricks on ya.

But I heard........? I know I heard someone......... Still I don't "sense" anyone near. Oh well, it was probably my imagination. I wonder how being *there* will make me feel. Will I remember my family? My friends? Or will I remember too much?

Joseph: C'mon Rogue, let's go before it gets to dark.

Rogue: Sure. Are you *sure* that you are ok with this?

Joseph: As sure as I ever will be. Let's go.

To be continued......................