I Walk The Line
by cschoolgirl
Rated PG
Disclaimer: Fox and Marvel own everything. If they don't, someone else does. The song "I Walk the Line" belongs to Johnny Cash.

Author's Notes: Thanks to Rach and Victoria for the beta. All mistakes made after they did their magic are the fault of my computer, it is old enough and should know better. Yes, Logan is a Johnny Cash fan.

Special Thanks: To Victoria for a few kind words that inspired me to post my gibberish.

The last time I woke up in the med bay, I knew I had to make Marie mine.

In the four years since I'd met her, she'd dominated my mind both day and night. I drifted in and out of her life over the years, each time I settled into the mansion and took my place on the team. Months would go by before I grew restless, heading back out on the road. I searched for my past; other times, I followed the fight circuit. Once in awhile I hooked up with some ex-Special Forces groups for mercenary operations. Regardless of what I did, I continuously stashed money away for Marie's future.

As time went by my absences became less frequent. I made sure I never missed birthdays and holidays. They were important to Marie. She said I was her only family now. But we were never father/daughter or even brother/sister. We were something different. It couldn't be explained.

There was always trust between us from the get go. That never faded. We shared a comfortable familiarity that was there immediately every time I returned to the mansion. She was the first person I sought out at my arrival. We would hug and she would return my tag. When I left she was usually the only one I told, leaving my tag in her care once again. It became a ritual of sorts.

Over the years, she'd become a beautiful woman. She finished school and started taking classes at a nearby college. She began training about that time. I was relieved when she joined the secondary team and not the primary one. It had been her choice, feeling that her mutation was better suited in the background.

This last time I had been back six months straight. I'd woken up in the med bay at least four times after stretching my healing factor to the limit on missions. Marie was always waiting when we returned. She would check in to make sure I was fine, then go back to her daily routine. She knew I didn't like to be fussed over. At least I thought she knew.

That last time I woke up in the med bay I caught her scent. I asked Hank if she had recently checked in on me. After some persuasion he informed me that Marie stayed by my side from the moment I was carried off the Blackbird to just before I came to. Every time.

Big Blue wouldn't let me leave for several hours, talked about medical observations. I put the time to good use examining my life and how Marie fit into it. I realized every time I came back to the mansion I remained celibate. It was very easy, I just found myself alone at the end of the day. Out on the road there was little difference, none of the women I met measured up to a pair of trusting brown eyes.

I found I had become more aggressive. On the circuit, I toyed with my opponents. Jumped into action on missions. Never took the easy mercenary offerings. More like the behavior of an alpha male in a wolf pack than a man; daily life at the mansion showed it. I was on the offensive with the other males in the house, and downright combative with any man interested in Marie.

I was never as happy as when I was in Marie's presence. She seemed to radiate a light, an inner beauty that appeared brightest when we were alone. It spilled over, was infectious, letting me loosen the constrictions I had placed on my heart, binding her to me and me to her.

I made a decision and became impatient with my confinement to the med bay. I ran up the stairs after my growing agitation drove Hank's tolerance of me to the limit. I headed down the hall, searching for Marie. I had never been one to beat around the bush and this time was no different. I was playing for keeps and I would show her my hand in the game.

I found her in her room, ready for bed and reading a book. Shutting the door, I sat on the edge of the bed as she set the book aside. Being a man of few words, I stated the obvious. 'I love you Marie.' We had always been somewhere between friends and lovers. I was now asking her to take the last step with me. I wanted to not only be her friend, but her lover.

A small smile played on her lips. She understood my question. My simple words turned that inner light on like a fire. 'I love you Logan.' We took the step together. My life had changed, the tide of the past had turned. I now had a future, one that included Marie.

During the next couple of months, happiness proved that I made the right choice. I will never be tame by any definition of the word, but I learned there is a line. Marie needs to know that I won't cross that line. That I will continually come back to her in one walking, grunting piece. Because Marie's mine, I walk the line.

The End

I Walk the Line
by Johnny Cash

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine,
I keep my eyes wide open all the time,
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds,
Because you're mine, I walk the line.

I find it very, very easy to be true,
I find myself alone when each day is through,
Yes, I'll admit that I'm a fool for you,
Because you're mine, I walk the line.

As sure as night is dark and day is light,
I keep you on my mind both day and night,
And happiness I know proves that it is right,
Because you're mine, I walk the line.

You've got a way to keep me on your side,
You give me cause for love that I can't hide,
For you I know I'd even try to turn the tide,
Because you're mine, I walk the line.

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