Author: Kat Lee
Character/Pairing: Jubilee, Roxie
Challenge/Prompt: halfamoon Day 13: Partnership
Word Count: 1,303
Date Written: 14 February 2017
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Marvel Comics and Disney, not the author, and are used without permission.
Jubilee blinks, her thoughts gradually returning to the room around her and the hand waving directly in front of her face. "Whu -- ?" she murmurs, blinking rapidly. "Sorry, Roxie." She pulls back and surprises herself by yawning, something she rarely does these days. "I must've zoned out."
Roxie, who was one of the first, and still few, people to accept her transformation into a Vampire, looks at her with compassion shining in her bright eyes. "It's okay, but, Jubes, I know it's tired. Being a Vamp, you don't sleep at night any more, and it's not normal for you to be up during the day. You're fighting your instincts -- "
Jubilee smirks. "Aren't you glad I am?" she taunts. "Otherwise I might be feasting on your neck right now."
"Try it with this shell," Roxie tosses back, winking. She sinks into the chair across from her, crosses her arms on top of the table, and rests her head on top of them, mirroring Jubilee's position. Now looking directly into her dearest friend's eyes, she says more gently, "I know you're tired, Jubilee. You can't keep this up."
Jubilee's smirk reveals a bit of Logan's blood still shining on one of her fangs. Other people would shy away from the sight, but Roxie doesn't even flinch. "Watch me. I'm Immortal now, Roxie. I don't have to stop, and I can't be stopped."
"You're immortal, Jubie, not unstoppable. Pixie's right: You need your sleep, and you're not sleeping. It's going to catch up to you eventually." She glances over at Shogo. "Is this about him?" she asks. "Are you worried somebody else is going to come after him? I can help you with him, you know. We can be partners -- "
"Roxie," Jubilee says gently, "I'm not -- "
Roxie sees the look in her friend's eyes and knows immediately where she's about to take their conversation. "I messed up one time, Jubilee. I already apologized. I shouldn't have kissed you without talking to you first."
Jubilee doesn't speak. She had been shocked at first by Roxie's kiss but then later, after the surprise had began to wear off, she'd realized she'd been honored as well. So many people tended to either overlook her or fear her these days, but not Roxie. Roxie had never so much as batted an eye at Jubilee becoming a Vampire. She'd been worried for her but out of true concern, not out of any fear connected to Jubilee's new Vampirism. She's worried for her again now, Jubilee realizes, listening to her speak.
"That's not the kind of partnership I was talking about," Roxie continues. "I mean, yeah, I'd be thrilled if you could love me like I love you, but I'm not going to force my feelings on you. That's not why I want to help you."
Jubilee doesn't dare mention that she could very easily love Roxie in return if she wasn't a Vampire, if she deserved to be loved, if she didn't always lose everybody she loved . . . Shogo gurgles. She glances over to his crib, wondering what kind of pain his life will bring. She still can't believe Logan's gone. He was supposed to be her partner not just in this part of her life, learning to be a Vampire and rearing this kid, but in all things.
"I want to help you, because I care about you. Jubilee," Roxie frowns, "are you listening?"
"Yeah. Yeah, I'm listening." Jubilee turns back to Roxie, but her friend clearly sees the dazed look in her eyes.
"What's up with you?" Roxie asks softly, shaking her head in wonder, confusion, and more than a little bit of concern. "You're not yourself these days."
"Of course I'm not." Jubilee smirks, but Roxie cuts her short.
"I'm not talking about the whole being a Vampire thing. You know I don't care about that. But you're less yourself now even than you were when you first got turned. What's going on?"
She's missing Logan. She's missing Ev and Angelo and even Cassidy. She's missing the life she used to have, the friends she once thought would be her family forever. She's slowly coming to accept that she really is going to be the last X-Man and she's going to outlive them all, thanks to her Vamp status. But Jubilee doesn't give any of these reasons aloud. She remains silent instead.
"You don't have to tell me," Roxie tries to assure her, reaching out and taking her hand over the table. She sighs. "I wish you would," she admits, "but you don't have to. But at least let me help. Take a nap. I'll watch Shogo. You know I won't let anything happen to him."
"I -- " Jubilee starts to say.
"We can even go to your room, if you want to. That way you know we're there; if something happens, it will wake you up. Let me be your partner, Jubilee. Let me watch Shogo for you in the day time, when you need your rest. If you don't get some soon, even you, Vampirella, are going to start passing out."
Jubilee quirks a brow at the nickname. Suddenly, before she even realizes she's emitting the sound, she starts to laugh.
Roxie frowns. "This isn't funny," she protests. "Jubilee, you need help!"
"No," Jubilee agrees, wiping at her mouth and slowly beginning to stop laughing, "this isn't funny. Life isn't funny. It can suck major eggs sometimes. But you . . . " She nods at Roxie. "Vampirella, that's funny." She chuckles again.
"I'm glad you like it." Roxie winks. "You're way hotter than she is."
Jubilee rolls her eyes. "Don't start," she warns. She's far too aware of her own shortcomings.
"I'm just saying the truth," Roxie says with a shrug. Jubilee's eyes meet hers again, and she's surprised to see that the girl really is telling her the truth as she sees it. "So how about it?" Roxie asks eagerly. "Will you let me help? I can watch Shogo while you sleep. I promise nothing will happen to him. And if you're going to keep saving the world while caring for him night after night, you really need to catch some z's."
Jubilee yawns again, loud and long, and only stops by placing a hand against her own mouth. She shakes her head. "Maybe," she speaks, feeling even more exhausted now than she had when she'd fallen asleep while talking to Roxie about last night's events, "maybe you're right."
"I know I am. Now let me help you."
"Okay. My room, though."
"Yes, ma'am." Roxie pounces to her feet and goes to collect Shogo from the crib Bobby slipped into their rec room days ago. The baby reaches happily for her. Roxie collects him underneath his mother's watchful gaze before turning back to Jubilee. "See?" she says. "I've got -- this," she finishes in a whisper for Jubilee has fallen asleep again.
She looks down at Shogo. "That's it," she whispers decisively, placing him back into the crib. She kisses his forehead and covers him back up. "We're gonna let your mother sleep, little guy, or heads are gonna roll." She slips out of the room, taking a chair with her and turning off the light behind her. Shutting the door quietly, she leans the chair back against the closed wood and takes her position, watching over both Jubilee and Shogo.
Nobody's waking her friend 'til she wakes herself, she determines, crossing her arms over her chest and waiting for the first person who thinks they're going to interrupt Jubilee's nap. Jubie and the baby are staying right there in that room, and she'll gladly kick the ass of any one who thinks they're going to wake them until Jubilee wakes herself. "Sweet dreams, Jubie," she whispers and keeps guarding them fiercely.