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And Echoed in the Well of Silence....

by Jeanne M.


Usual Jeanne M disclaimer: Characters? NOT MINE. Money? NONE MADE. This takes place barely 5 min after Just Walk Away. I keep trying to work on my other storylines, but this one keeps popping up and demanding I write more. *sigh* Why can't the voices go bother someone else? Idea for the title comes from the Simon and Garfunkle song "Sounds of Silence," which is quite nice to listen to when writing. For the record- I hate Paige Guthrie. If you know me in 'real' life, and you know my understand about the Grits. That said.....Onwards!


because sometimes it's what's said between the lines.

Jono could not believe he just did that. Correction, Jono could not believe he had done that and gotten away alive. It was unreal. He hadn't really had a plan to be honest, other than get her to admit she wasn't happy. He knew damn well that his younger teammate was a very dangerous young woman, even if she hid that particular fact deep within a facade of pop culture and valley-girl antics. Bravo mate. You just managed to keep Spark from slitting yer throat, barely. She woulda cut you open without blinking. Nah, Spark may be many things, but she wouldn't kill me over this. She'd be more likely to run off.....ah shite..... With that realization, Jonothon changed the direction of his walk and headed towards the girl's dorm.

He reached her room at the same time as Paige was leaving. "What can ah do for ya Jono?" She eyed him suspiciously, not really wanting to know what he wanted.

**Hullo. Is Sparkler around?** Terse, he peered around her into the room. Nope, no sign of her. Damn. She was probably out rollerblading still. **We're supposed to have an anime marathon later, and I fergot to ask her what time.**

Paige gave him a scathing look. "No, Jubilee's not here. I'll leave her a note saying you stopped in, how's that?"

**What's with the hostility, gel? I know we're not on the best of terms right now, but where's this coming from?** Jono was puzzled, he could almost see the resentment and anger flowing from Paige. **What did I do this time?**

"Sparkler???? Oh c'mon Jono. Adopting yet another helpless girl? Are you going to give every female on campus some cutesy little nickname? Or do you just have a thing for roomies?" Paige was bristling at him with all the ire she could muster.

Jono blinked. Twice. ** Paige, yer nuts. Spark don't mean anything to me that way. I just wanted to know what time our anime showing is.**

"Whatsa matter Guthrie, jealous 'cause I got a hot date with tall-dark-and-leather here?" Jono froze at the sound of the sarcasm behind him. Shit, Jubilee. "Chill hayseed, it's our monthly anime viewing. Someone would think you still had a thing for the guy the way yer carrying on." Jubilee breezed past both of them into the room, rollerblades making a whirring sound on the floor. "B'sides, it ain't like that, and you know it. Quit tryin' to cause trouble, no soap operas in my room. C'mon in Jono. See ya later, Paige. Don't let the ego bump the door on the way out." Jubilee flashed her winning smile at Paige, simultaneously shoving her out of the doorway and pulling Jono into the room as the door slammed shut. "Bitch. Sorry Jono, I know ya like her, but I can't stand the brat half the time. Miss I-Wanna-Out-Do-My-Brother. All she cares about is the position of leading the X-Men someday, it's not about the Dream or teamwork for her. She ain't got the people skills or the heart for the job, but I'm not the one to tell her that."

**And who does? You?** Jono projected with humor as he sat down on Jubilee's blue velvet butterfly chair.

"Me? Nah, yours truly is no more than a career grunt. I take the orders, I ignore the orders, I get yelled at for nearly killing myself, and everyone goes home alive. It's an okay system if ya know how to work it. You smile, go out and save the world, come back beat ta heck, and start the cycle over again." Jubilee grinned infectiously at him. "I may be a grunt, but at least I know it. I'm not cut out for anything else, I'm too much a loner, like Wolvie. And let's face it, I'm ruined for 'normal' life after being an X." She popped her skates off and hung them from her bedpost. "Now, seeing as how I just saw you no more than a half hour ago, what can I do for you this time?"

**Fear of you skipping out on our 'date' tonight.**

This time it was her turn to blink. Twice. "Hmmm. Okay, I can see where you might think that. I do have a tendency to vanish, don't I?" At his nod, she continued. "No fears, Jono. I ain't leaving this time. May I ask what brought that to mind?"

**The fact you almost silt me throat. I was frozen the entire time you had that blade against me. The second you stepped back, I realized you wouldn't kill me over this. Yer more likely to disappear for awhile.** Jono paused for a moment, an annoyed look crossing his face. ** I only remembered just now that you couldn't a killed me, because I ain't got a throat.**

"I was wondering if you would figure that out." Jubilee leaned against the window, looking smug. "Natural reaction to being threatened with a very sharp object by a rather dangerous person is fear. You were either going to freeze up and try and talk me down, or instinctively blast me the moment you felt threatened. Since I acted like I could and would kill you, your mind took it at face value. You don't have enough fine control to just blast me away, so you automatically froze."

** I could feel that toy a your's at my neck!** Jono couldn't understand, he had felt the cool steel of the blade resting against his skin and the sharp edge press ever so gently to him. ** I don't have a neck!!!**

"Ever heard of Phantom Limb Syndrome? Look it up. Besides you do too have a neck, just not a throat. I got behind you, remember? I pressed the knife on the diagonal, tip at the cheek, slanting down towards the back of your neck. It's not my fault you thought it was life-threatening." Jono could see her amusement turning to annoyance.

**Sparkler, It's cool. I'm just dismayed I fell for it. An' feel like kicking myself fer not expecting you to do something. To be honest, I thought you'd give me the finger, and skate off never to be seen again.** Jono shuffled his feet and looked her in the eyes. God, her eyes were so brilliant. ** An' I like you too much to see that happen. As a friend an' all.**

"Yeah." Jubilee suddenly seemed quite uncomfortable. "Friends an' stuff." She moved away from the window, sitting cross-legged on her bed. "Which is so totally weird if you think about it."

**Nah, not really. We've been put the life's shitter a couple of times now. Social injustice, persecution, and all that. You got fucked over, I got fucked over. We're fucked. An' we're both damn good at projecting our 'image' an' all that.**

"Yeah, we invite Penance to join the party, an' we got the mutant version of the Three Musketeers." Jubilee snickered nastily, projecting a picture of the three of them in Musketeer uniforms from the Disney movie into his mind.

** Not funny gel. I don't do Disney.**

"Hey, you an' Penny are the ones with leather fetishes. Maybe you need some Disney every so often." She adopted a thoughtful look. "Although, there was this dress at Ragstock that looked like Trinity's from the Matrix that I was thinking of getting. I think I might look good in polyurethane...."

** I'd be better than the spandex habit yer got going now.**

"I could say the same for you!"

** I didn't come here to talk about mutant psychology or fashion, Spark. I just wanted to make sure you hadn't skipped town, an' to see what time the marathon was at. I fergot to ask before.** Jono borrowed Sean's patented 'kicked-puppy look,' and Jubilee bust out laughing, all tension broken.

"Sheesh. I dunno? I'm hungry, so after dinner? And I don't think we want to hold it in here, unless you can ignore Paige's 'wounded southern belle' act."

**Emma's cooking tonight.**

"It starts in half an hour, I'm ordering pizza, and it takes place in your basement."

** Can you make pancakes?**

Jubilee started to say something, but stopped, a twitch of a smile showing. "Yeah, I think I can manage pancakes. Chocolate chip?"

** Please.**

"You realize if Ange catches me making pancakes, he's going to eat most of them. We may as well invite him too, or he'll complain about me starving him."

**Not a problem.** Jono reached out across the campus, searching for his friend. **'Ey, Angelo. Get yer bum up to Jubilee's room. We're having an anime marathon in the basement tonight, you're invited, and I need you to help me carry her Slayers collection. She's making her pancakes.**

**Chocolate Chip?** Jono could feel Angelo's attention shift from his Atari to the thought of pancakes.

**Yes, you glutton. The gel's making the chocolate chip ones, and she says if you don't help me then you don't get any. We're watching everything in our combined stash. Care to join us?**

"Si si, anything for a beautiful chica who cooks." Angelo was already sticking his nose around the door. "Did someone say pancakes?"

Jubilee giggled, throwing her pillow at him. "Yes. What's this I hear about you extolling my virtues as a chef to Jono? Why did he ask me for pancakes? And what's this about 'beautiful?' "

Angelo swept low in a mocking bow. "Because, you are the only beautiful chicquita in the house who can cook. Monet wouldn't lower herself, Ms. Frost is a CEO, not a chef, and I don't wanna know what's in that stuff Country Mouse makes."

"Grits." Jubilee shuddered. "Don't get me started."

"But it's all about the Grits!" Angelo said gleefully. "Dios, that stuff's probably what causes her family to mutate so much."

** Ferget the coal mine, it's all in the Grits.** Jono projected as his eyes crinkled.

"Ahem. If'n ya'll are done...." The three jumped guiltily at the sight of the very angry blonde in the doorway.

"Nah, we ain't even started yet Hayseed." Jubilee maliciously proclaimed as she jumped off the bed and grabbed an armload of tapes off her dresser. "But you aren't invited to the party. Hope ya like Frost's omelettes. Jonothon, Ange, c'mon!"

As the three ran down the hall, arms loaded with anime and trading cracks about Grits, a single figure stood in the doorway, unable to utter anything in her defense other than very distressed......

"Not omelettes!"