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fic: He's Been Gone For Such A Long Time

Title: He's Been Gone For Such A Long Time
Author: fengirl88
Fandom: X-Men: First Class
Pairing: Erik/Charles
Rating: NC-17
Warnings: none
Wordcount: 5251
Disclaimer: These characters are not mine.
Summary: Ten months since he and Charles parted on that beach in Cuba, almost to the day. He'd thought it would get better with time, but if anything it seems to be getting worse.
A/N: Written as a pinch-hit for kasuchans at the Secret Mutant holiday exchange; I combined two prompt suggestions: physical intimacy preceding emotional intimacy, and the idea of the Brotherhood having to deal with Erik pining for Charles, post-beach.
Heartfelt thanks to kalypso_v, ginbitch and thimpressionist for excellent suggestions about the plot and setting of this fic, and for cheering me on through the writing of it. Extra-special thanks to kalypso_v for eleventh-hour beta wisdom and support.



August 28, 1963



Ten months since he and Charles parted on that beach in Cuba, almost to the day. He'd thought it would get better with time, but if anything it seems to be getting worse.

The first few months Erik was still burning with rage at humankind, dreaming night after night of a sky full of missiles aimed at a handful of mutants. Charles had been right when he warned him killing Shaw will not bring you peace. Erik knew that already, and he didn't care. He'd expected at least something like the exhilaration he'd felt killing those Nazis in the bar in Argentina, but he felt nothing.

It didn't matter. He didn't need that. Didn't need Charles's serenity, either. Rage would carry him, and there was reason enough for rage.

Rage carried him through the first six months after Shaw's death, with the Brotherhood moving around the country till they found a location for their new base that he was satisfied with. Carried him through constructing a compound as impenetrable as the helmet he wore to protect him now from Charles. He knew McCoy would have rebuilt Cerebro as quickly as possible, and that Charles would be looking for mutants again.

The Brotherhood were looking, too, though recruiting didn't go so well without Charles. Emma couldn't locate mutants as easily, and the two of them didn't work as well together as he and Charles had. There was an underground scene of mutant bars and clubs, if you knew where to look for it, but there was always the danger of raids. Emma said he was too conspicuous, scaring off potential recruits who were trying to pass for human.

He would never say it to the others, because he's not stupid about the importance of morale, but things were much better when he and Charles were on the same side.

In March, they'd managed to liberate a dozen maximum security mutant prisoners from the closing of Alcatraz – Emma had had to wipe a lot of minds to stop that story from leaking. And then they'd brought the new recruits back to the compound, and he'd realized he had no idea what to do with them.

Charles always took care of the training. Charles liked that sort of thing. And it wasn't till Erik tried to do it himself that he realized training is hard. There's only so far you can go with pushing kids off satellite dishes to make them fly...



On the television, Dr King is addressing the crowd in front of the Lincoln Memorial and proclaiming that he has a dream. Erik's only half paying attention to the speech, because it reminds him uncomfortably of Charles's philosophy: In the process of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. His own sympathies lie with the man who calls himself Malcolm X: preaching the supremacy of your own race and advocating separatism makes perfect sense.

He remembers playing chess on the steps of the Memorial with Charles, looking out across that vista and arguing about politics. He hasn't changed his views, and Charles hasn't either.

Charles is naïve if he thinks mutants and humans will ever live together in harmony. Erik's seen what people do to each other, and he knows that Charles's dream, like King's dream of blacks and whites living peacefully together, is just that: a dream that won't come true.

But the March for Jobs and Freedom is an opportunity for recruiting mutants who are already politically active, and they need to make the most of that. There's another opportunity following hard on the heels of this one: a convention of science fiction enthusiasts, Discon or some such stupid name, with a costume ball on Saturday night that Janos says they can easily crash. A lot of mutants are rumoured to be heading for the convention – when the Hilton is full of bug-eyed monsters, spacemen, elves and hobbits, nobody's going to ask why Azazel is bright red, and Mystique can walk around covered in blue scales if she feels like it.

Erik's not going to the convention himself. There's too much to do here. And anyway, it's exactly the sort of occasion Charles would see as an ideal recruiting-ground. He can't risk running into Charles. Not when he's already having to fight so hard to conquer his weakness in that direction.



The happy memories are the hardest. Which doesn't make sense. And there are more of them than he'd bargained for – he's constantly being ambushed by things he'd forgotten, or hadn't even noticed at the time. Nothing special, he'd have said. Not worth keeping. But his treacherous memory has kept them anyway, it seems...



Mornings on the recruiting trip with Charles rubbing the sleep from his eyes and complaining about the horrible coffee in some roadside diner, laughing because it was so spectacularly awful: “I didn't think anywhere could be worse than the last place, but this sets a whole new standard.”

Coming out of the bar where they'd tried to recruit the cigar-smoking mutant who said “Go fuck yourself”, Charles saying “They don't usually say that out loud”, and the two of them collapsing against the wall, helpless with laughter.

Joking in the strip club, drinking champagne on the bed together as if they were a couple...

But they're not, and they never will be now.




He tries not to remember the mansion, and the night before Cuba, pushing Raven out of bed with a kiss and a lecture, and then thinking she'd come back again in a new disguise:

“I said no, Raven.”

The figure on the bed blinked at him, startled. “Raven?”

“Oh, come on,” Erik said. “You think you have a better chance with me like this?”

“OK, I clearly need to have a serious talk with Raven,” Charles said, “but that explains why she's wandering around the house naked and blue.”

“What are you doing here?” Erik asked, though the blood pounding in his ears said he already knew.

“Seeing if I have a chance with you like this,” Charles said, grinning. “Do I?”

He got his answer, though it wasn't in words. Erik didn't have the words for it. Still doesn't, if it comes to that.

Erik told himself it was just a way of relieving tension for them both, the night before the battle. Sure, he'd been physically attracted to Charles right from the start, though he assumed Charles wasn't interested, given the way he kept going after women. Having him at last would get all those inconvenient and distracting feelings out of Erik's system, or so he thought.

When he woke up next morning wanting Charles more than ever, he shut those feelings down, hard. He knew he had to focus on Shaw. Working things out with Charles could wait.

But then the missiles came, and the bullets happened, and he was down on the sand with everything ruined and broken, trying his damnedest not to beg Charles to stay with him. We're brothers, you and I; we want the same things didn't begin to tell the truth about what Charles meant to him, but he couldn't speak about that in front of the others.

He didn't even know the full extent of it himself. Not till he saw Charles's face twisted in pain, and the tears in his eyes as he said “Oh my friend, I am sorry, but we do not.”



Erik is not pining, whatever Mystique says. Pining is what dogs do. Dogs, or adolescent girls. Erik has never pined in his life, and he's not about to start now.

But he's not going to expose himself to the risk of meeting Charles. It's bad enough seeing pictures of him in the newspapers.

Besides, there are lots of things here that need his attention. As he said to Mystique, he's far too busy for this.





August 31, 1963


“If one more person says I don't look like a Morlock, I'm going to kill them,” Mystique says, glaring at the costumed revellers in the Hilton ballroom. “Still, I guess it's nice not to be the only two blue people in the room for a change.”

“Whatever happened to Mutant And Proud?” Beast jeers.

He still hasn't forgiven her for that, then. Or for the rest of it, probably.

“How is Charles?” she asks. For all she tries not to, she does still care about him.

“Ask him yourself,” Beast says, but it's not just a brush-off; he's pointing to the other side of the ballroom.

“He's here?”

“Why shouldn't he be?” Beast says. “I'm surprised Erik isn't.”

“Magneto,” she says automatically. He's right: she'd have expected Erik to be here herself, if she hadn't seen the way he's been over the last few months. She's not about to tell Beast that, though.


Things seemed to be going OK, at first, after the horror of what happened in Cuba. She'd gradually begun to get used to her new companions, trying out their shapes in front of a mirror to see how they felt. Fiery Azazel and tempestuous Janos, hardly a surprise when they'd paired off; Angel, still a sulky mystery, though she'd thought at first that they might become friends; Emma diamond-hard and unreadable, even in her ordinary form.

She'd watched Erik throwing himself into the search for a new base, new recruits, always pushing himself, never resting.

After Alcatraz, the cracks had begun to show. And eventually none of them could ignore the fact that something was badly wrong.

They agreed they couldn't talk about it at the compound, and slipped away while Magneto was engaged in lecturing the new recruits, badly. The bartender gave them a suspicious look when they walked in, but Emma fixed him with a snap of her fingers, and the last round of drinks was on the house.

“Magneto is going to get us all killed,” Janos said gloomily, staring into his empty wine-glass.

“Come on, he's not that bad,” Angel said, twirling the paper parasol from her cocktail.

“You think?” Azazel snapped. “His mind is not on the task; another such error and it could be the end of everything.”

Nobody said anything; the memory of the electricity pylons torn up and whirling around their heads the day before was still too vivid for comfort.

“Emma, can't you – ” Janos began.

“Don't look at me,” Emma said. “He never takes that helmet off except to go to bed. Last time I checked, he was still dreaming about missiles.”

You could find out,” Angel said, turning to Mystique. “You know him best.”

She tried to argue, but it was true; she's the only one who knew him before Cuba. Angel didn't stick around long enough. The one who really knew him was Charles, of course, but they wouldn't ask him for help. Anyway, she was pretty sure Charles was the root of the problem, though she wasn't about to tell them that. Not until she was sure, and maybe not even then.

“OK,” she said. “I'll try, but I can't promise anything.”

“Whatever you can do is going to be better than nothing,” Azazel said, draining his vodka glass.



The conversation went about as well as you'd expect.

“Erik – ”

Bad start.

“Magneto,” he snapped.

“Yeah, well, you're not exactly being Magneto at the moment,” she said. “This is about Charles, isn't it?”

“What is?”

OK, he really wasn't going to make this easy, was he?

“You miss him,” she said.

“I do not.”

“Yes, you do,” she said.

“He made his choice,” Erik said. “He's not going to change, and neither am I. Look, I don't know why we're even having this conversation.”

“Because you're not sleeping or eating – ”

“I am!”

“Hardly,” she said. “And you're miserable all the time. Face it, Erik, you're actually pining for him.”

“I am not,” he said. “Now, unless you've got something important to talk about, I have things to do.”



Erik can deny it all he likes, but she recognizes the signs. She misses Charles herself, after all. She's known him more than half her life, and he's the closest thing she's ever had to a brother.

And here he comes, wheeling his way towards her through the party crowds. She concentrates hard on noticing the details of the fancy new chair Hank, Beast, must have made him; she is not going to cry.

“Raven,” he says, and corrects himself right away: “Mystique, sorry. It's good to see you. Are you well?”

“Never better,” she lies. “How about you?”

“As you see,” he says, “I'm very well, thank you.”

Beast is fidgeting as if he doesn't know whether to stay or go; he's obviously worrying about what will happen if he leaves Charles with her, and that hurts, in ways she's not going to let herself think about till much later.

“It's OK, Hank,” Charles says. “I'd like to talk to – to Mystique. Alone.”

Oh great, he's going to ask about Erik. What is she supposed to do now?

“Hank can be rather overprotective,” Charles says. “Not that I'm not grateful. He takes very good care of me. They all do.”

That hurts too, though there's not a shade of reproach in his voice or his look.

“What do you want, Charles?” she asks, anxious to get this over with.

He looks hurt himself, but then forces a smile.

“I'd like you to give this to Erik. Magneto.” He holds out a plain white envelope.

“What is it?” She doesn't trust him, doesn't trust this.

“It's a letter,” Charles says. “I hoped someone from your organization would be here. I thought he might – ”

“No,” she says. “He's not – he's busy.”

Charles raises an eyebrow. “He must be. Unless – is he all right?”

He promised not to read her mind, but that was a long time ago. She tries to keep from thinking about that conversation with Erik, to keep from thinking about Erik at all...

“He's fine,” she says.

“I'm glad to hear it,” Charles says.

She doesn't think he believes her for a minute.



She's tempted to burn the letter or rip it up, because she suspects this will only make Erik worse. But she can't quite bring herself to do that. He has to make his own decisions.

“From Charles,” she says, handing it to him.

“Thanks,” he says, impassive. The Lehnsherr poker face is back with a vengeance.

He disappears into the War Room and doesn't mention Charles or the letter again.



Two days later, Erik goes missing and doesn't come back for 36 hours.





September 2, 1963

Charles is sitting up in bed, trying to read the same page he's already read three times without taking in a word of it, and wondering where Erik is and what he's doing now. He didn't expect an immediate answer to his letter, but he hasn't been able to concentrate on anything properly since he gave it to Raven. Maybe she never delivered it; she looked so suspicious when he gave it to her.

He hadn't meant to use Cerebro to spy on the Brotherhood's conversation; it was pure accident that he'd stumbled across a group of mutants thinking so loudly and anxiously about Magneto. Of course he was always looking out for Erik, though he didn't expect to find him. He knew Erik wore that wretched helmet to protect himself from Charles's scrutiny – and, as much as that hurt, he'd accepted it, or he thought he had. But picking up that concern for Erik, that sense of someone in the process of falling apart, had spurred him to write the letter he'd been meaning to write for months, though he still had no idea how he'd get it to Erik.

When Hank had told him about Discon I, he knew there must be a chance. Enough of a chance to make it worth going to the ball, and even worth putting up with the predictable enquiries about which fictional character he'd come as, not to mention the patronizing enthusiasm about his groovy space-age wheelchair.



He'd never got the chance to tell Erik how he felt about him, and even though it's no use now he'd still like to say it. It's ironic that they had all that time together on the road and nothing ever happened. And then to come together the night before they parted...

Even then, he hadn't realized how much he wanted from Erik, how much Erik meant to him. As they lay so closely embraced afterwards, hearts still racing and breathing ragged, he'd thought the rush of emotion he felt was just the endorphins released by sex. No point in complicating matters; if they came out of Cuba alive, there would be time to see how things developed between them. He'd like that, very much, but he wasn't going to let himself dwell on it, not yet.

And then the beach came and broke them, broke him, and it seemed there was nothing left.

He's learning all the time, though, and that sustains him. Learning to manage life in this irrevocably changed body. Learning to take pleasure in things he didn't have time for before. And teaching, which he already knew he loved. Teaching the young mutants to control their abilities. Teaching them they have something to be proud of. Teaching them – preaching, Erik would have said – that one day humans and mutantkind will live together in harmony, and that they, and he, must work for that day, be the best selves they can be, to be ready for it when it comes...

There's a noise outside, and the metal catch of the window undoes itself, the window swings open –

“Erik,” Charles says. “How lovely to see you. Do come in.”

Erik's already clambering through the window and stomping over to stand by the bed. He's in his full Magneto get-up, and he's obviously in a very bad mood.

“This has got to stop,” he says, glaring accusingly at Charles.

“What has?” Charles asks.

“I can't eat, I can't sleep, my work is going to pieces, and it's all your fault,” Erik says. “How am I supposed to run my organization when I'm in this state?”

Charles knows it would be bad to laugh, so he doesn't, but he can't quite suppress a smile. “I missed you too.”

“It's not funny, Charles,” Erik growls.

“I'm not joking,” Charles says mildly. “I have missed you. I do miss you. You know that, if you read my letter. And I meant what I said: you would be welcome here any time.”

Erik starts pacing up and down, muttering inaudibly to himself.

“I'm very glad you're here,” Charles says. “But I'd be even more glad if you would stay for a while.”

That gets him a wild look; he thinks Erik must be torn between wanting to stay and feeling trapped.

“At least stay a little while,” Charles says, trying not to sound as if he's begging.

“You want me to,” Erik says, sounding more uncertain than anyone who'd read that letter has a right to be.

“Very much,” Charles says. “If you would stop pacing and come over here, I could show you how much.”

Erik stops pacing and gives him a look of such intensity that Charles feels slightly giddy.

“Are you – ” Erik says, and stops. “Can we – ”

“Let's find out,” Charles says, with a grin.

It's partly bravado: he doesn't want Erik to feel sorry for him. But he means it, too. He wants to find out what his body can do, and he wants Erik to explore that with him.

Erik comes to him slowly – he looks as if he's feeling awkward and more than a little nervous. But his eyes are darker, and he's slightly flushed; he wants this too, Charles thinks.

Charles puts his arms around Erik's waist and pulls him down to sit on the bed beside him. He kisses the point of Erik's chin, and strokes his face as best he can with that wretched helmet in the way, then rubs his thumb across Erik's lips with a gentle insinuating pressure.

“Will you take that thing off?” he says. “I can't kiss you properly with it on.”

He's not going to try for telepathic sex, not this time, much as he'd love to have that with Erik. After almost a year apart, Charles isn't going to do anything that might scare him off. But if they're going to have a chance, Erik has to trust him with this.

There's a pause in which he thinks it's all over before it's begun, and then Erik takes the helmet off and lays it to one side.

“Thank you,” Charles says, and he means it.

He runs his fingers through Erik's hair over and over again, till Erik's eyes close for a moment and he sighs.

“Mmm,” Charles says. “You could do that to me, if you like... Like that, yes.”

“What should I do now?” Erik asks, his fingers moving gently against Charles's scalp.

“You could keep doing that for a bit, it's nice,” Charles says, and shivers with pleasure. “But it would be – ah – very lovely to see you naked, if you wouldn't mind getting undressed.”

He unclasps Erik's stupid cape by way of encouragement.

They'd been so frantic for each other that there was no time to savour it, the night before Cuba, shedding clothes as if it was a race. Lying back against the heap of pillows now and watching Erik strip for him, slowly, gazing back at Charles as he does so, is a pleasure so intense that it makes tears start to Charles's eyes.

“You're beautiful,” he says, and sees the blush that stains Erik's skin at that. He wants to follow the line of it with his lips and his tongue and his fingers.

“Come here, love,” he says, sounding more confident than he feels. He doesn't know how – or even if – this is going to work, though he knows in theory that sexual satisfaction is possible in different ways now.

“Do you want me to undress you too?” Erik asks. He sounds shaky; Charles isn't sure if he means are you going to be too cold, or would you rather undress yourself, or something else altogether.

“I think this pyjama top could come off, don't you?” Charles says, undoing a button.

Erik moves in and undoes the rest, with a clumsiness that makes Charles want to squeeze the breath out of him. He touches Charles gently, reverently, and kisses him from the base of his throat down to just above his navel.

“Oh,” Charles says. “Yes. Oh yes.”

“There?” Erik says, kissing and stroking.

“Unh,” he says. “Ah. There, yes.”

Erik goes on kissing and touching him, finding out the places he likes best, and the heat and pleasure build in him till he can hardly bear it, till he's crying out and shuddering, pulling Erik closer as if he could fuse their bodies together.

Neither of them can speak for a while after that; they cling to each other, tearful and unashamed.

“You now,” Charles says, a little shakily. The feeling of Erik's cock lying hot and heavy against his palm makes him ache with longing all over again.

It takes some manoeuvring before they find the right position for him to take Erik in his mouth, but finally he's able to lick and suck, demand and tease, pull and caress and take Erik as deep as he can, his fingers biting into Erik's hips as he holds him on the edge, holds him there till he curses and begs and comes with a long, wrenching cry.

Before they fall asleep together, Charles makes two further discoveries: (1) It is possible to come again quite soon after the first time if you don't have to allow for a refractory period. (2) It is, apparently, possible to come from an intense and prolonged period of kissing, without any other stimulation.

The look of triumph and astonishment on Erik's face when Charles comes like that is one that Charles is going to cherish for a very long time.



September 4, 1963


Erik lets himself back into the compound and of course runs into Mystique right away. She takes one look at him and says “I told you so.”

“Shut up,” Erik says, but he can't stop smiling.

“Looks like you had a good time with my brother, anyway,” she says.

“Oh, he's your brother again now, is he?” Erik says. “And yes, thank you. Exceptional.”

She scuttles away, complaining that that's more than she wanted to know. Entirely her own fault for asking.

Erik looks again at the book-shaped parcel. It's typical of Charles to give him a book, though he doesn't know why it has to be a secret.

Don't open it till you're alone, Charles had said. Well, he is now.

He goes into the War Room and sits down to unwrap the parcel. It's a slim volume with a plain dark blue cover, and there's an envelope with “Erik Lehnsherr” on it in Charles's familiar handwriting. As if there could be any doubt who it was for, when Charles actually handed it to him. Erik grins and opens the envelope.

The note is dated three days ago:

Dearest Erik,

I've been thinking about you a lot. The enclosed will give you some idea of how. Please call me.

Charles


Was he going to send this, then, if Erik hadn't come?

He opens the book, and nearly drops it at the words on the title-page.

Your Sexual Life After Paralysis

It hits him hard, the wave of confused emotion: he feels as if he's drowning in guilt, anguish, rage, loss. But the memory of Charles's hands and mouth on him, Charles calling out his name at the moment of orgasm, pulls him towards the light. More: it starts a slow curl of heat in the pit of his stomach. Charles planned for this. Charles wants this. Wants whatever is possible between them, in bed and out.

There's a phone number at the top of the note. He takes off his helmet and picks up the phone.

“Charles Xavier,” Charles answers, sounding so professional and public that Erik almost bolts out of the call in panic, feeling as if the last two days couldn't really have happened.

“Charles, it's – ”

“Erik!” The warmth and delight in Charles's voice make him breathe again. “I wasn't expecting to hear from you so soon. You must have made good time.”

“I – yes,” he says. “I, um, opened your parcel.”

“Where are you?” Charles asks.

Erik's not sure why that question should make him feel hot all over, but it does.

“In the – in my study.”

“Is the door locked?” Charles says, and there's a faint tease in it that makes Erik want to bite.

“It is now,” he says, motioning the key to turn.

“Mm,” Charles says. “All done without leaving your desk, I can tell.” He sounds indecently pleased, almost purring.

Erik has a vivid memory of Charles naked in bed, stretching luxuriously after sex. It's just as well the door is locked, because at this rate –

“Did you look at the book?” Charles asks.

“Only the title page,” Erik says. “Oh. Was I – did you want me to read it first?”

Charles laughs. “No, I was hoping we might study it together. I have another copy here.”

“Oh,” Erik says. “I didn't know there were books about this.”

“Just the one, as far as I know,” Charles says. “I thought we might start with page 8.”

Page 8 has an illustration of a metal ring, and an explanation that Erik can't read beyond the first sentence, because the idea of Charles wearing that

“Do you like it?” Charles asks. “I thought maybe, with your abilities, it's something you could make for me.”

Erik's not sure he can breathe, never mind speak. He tries to say “Yes,” but it comes out more like “Gnnh.”

“I'd like very much to be inside you,” Charles says. “Have you on top, riding me, would you like that, darling? My hand on your cock, stroking you, squeezing you while you fuck yourself on my cock, I'd like that so much – ”

“Oh god,” Erik says. He fumbles at his clothes, cursing this stupid outfit, he's ridiculously hard and Charles's words are making him harder –

“Would you like to come like that?” Charles says, and Erik doesn't know how he can keep talking. “Fucking up into my hand, pushing back down onto my cock, want you like that, so much, god, Erik, please – ”

“Yes,” Erik says helplessly. “Oh.”

His hand is moving fast and hard on his cock now, imagining Charles's hand there, imagining Charles's cock inside him, the push and stretch of it, himself caught between two excruciating pleasures, unable to choose.

“Oh,” he says again, “Charles, oh – ”

“Let me in,” Charles says. “Darling, please, I want to feel you, Erik, please let me – ”

He means let me in your head, Erik realizes dizzily.

“Yes,” he gasps, “come in, yes – ”

He's hit by a surge of pleasure so strong it doubles him over.

Yes,” Charles says. “Oh yes. Erik, so good, so good – ”

Another surge, stronger than the first, and Erik's coming, shuddering and gasping, feeling the pulse of Charles's orgasm through his own.

Oh, but it's lonely like this, as the waves of pleasure recede. He wants Charles in his arms, wants to hold him and kiss him and breathe him in...

Yes, Charles's voice says in his head. I want that too. And for a moment Erik feels it, feels the warmth and weight of Charles in his arms, Charles's lips hot against his neck. He groans.

“Come again soon?” Charles says.

Erik's not sure if that's meant to be a double entendre, but they're both laughing at it as if it was.

“Yes,” he says. “Soon, please, Charles. Yes.”

There's a heap of paperclips in a shallow dish under the desklamp; he floats them up and watches the double helix pattern form and re-form, the threads entwined and glinting in mid-air.



“Looks like you found someone to fill that gap in your life after all,” Emma says to him slyly, when he emerges from the War Room some hours later. She doesn't have to add Amongst other things; it's obvious that's what she means.

“Looks like it,” he agrees, wondering just how much of his exchanges with Charles she picked up.

He knows he's gone red, and he can see from the expressions on the others' faces that there's going to be a lot more teasing about this before they're done, and probably a few arguments as well; but he's too happy to care. Whatever happens, he and Charles have found each other again. It won't be easy, but they'll work something out.

It's a warm afternoon, and he feels too hot in his usual clothes. Maybe he'll put on that old polo shirt and his chinos and go for a walk by the river where it's cooler.

A window's open somewhere and he can hear a transistor radio playing that song that's always on the wireless these days: Now he's back, and things will be fine, hey la, hey la....

He's still whistling the tune as he puts on his shades and strolls out of the compound into the sunlight.

*****

Notes


Title from the Angels' hit single, My Boyfriend's Back, which I was delighted to discover was number one in the US charts for three weeks from August 31, 1963.

More details about the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom can be found here.

Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy have both been quoted as saying that the political opposition between Charles and Erik is "like Martin Luther King and Malcolm X". In one interview, Fassbender says "I didn't study any Malcolm X videos or anything like that. But it clarifies where both these characters are coming from".

Details of Discon I, the 1963 Worldcon held in Washington, D.C., from 31 August to 2 September, can be found here.

The Morlocks are the blue-skinned monsters who feature in the 1960 film adaptation of H.G. Wells's The Time Machine.

I don't think the book Charles gives Erik existed in 1963, though I would be glad to learn of anything like it from that period; here are some XMFC stories which I think deal wonderfully with Charles's sexual life after his spinal injury:

helens78's Silver Dollars;

rubynye's Enough To Feel All [Right];

winterhill's A Very Special Episode.




Also posted at http://fengirl88.dreamwidth.org/99003.html with comment count unavailable comments.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
_profiterole_
Jan. 5th, 2013 02:11 pm (UTC)
Wonderful fic!
fengirl88
Jan. 5th, 2013 02:24 pm (UTC)
thank you very much! *beams*
pinigir
Jan. 5th, 2013 11:34 pm (UTC)
Loved it! Loved Magneto's pining and the eventual solution to the problem. :-)
fengirl88
Jan. 6th, 2013 01:12 am (UTC)
thank you - I'm very glad you enjoyed it!
evelinavex
Jan. 6th, 2013 03:03 am (UTC)
Oh, Erik.

I just. I love this. The pining, the coming together, the open but hopeful ending. Sometimes it's hard to think of anything but angst when it comes to XM:FC, but this is a lovely bridge between the complexity of Erik and Charles' emotions about what happened that day, and a resolution that involves them being together personally and apart professionally.

This is now my head-canon, until Days of Future Past no doubt debunks it.

Fantastic writing!
fengirl88
Jan. 6th, 2013 12:08 pm (UTC)
thank you very much - I think I'm adopting it as my headcanon too! I'm very glad you liked it. *beams*
sunny_rainfall
Jan. 6th, 2013 08:31 am (UTC)
that was lovely :D
fengirl88
Jan. 6th, 2013 12:07 pm (UTC)
thank you! *beams*
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scallop voices
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