Izzy here, with my fanfic, "Witness Now," the fic that won the battle in my head of what I would write today, having seen X2 last night. X-Men movie canon with spoilers, obviously. Magneto's thoughts while leaving the base. Slashy(you thought it wouldn't be?). Fox's(conservative idiots) and Marvel's(not idiots as far as I know).

Witness Now

By Izzy

"Goodbye, Charles." And with that, I turn and walk away.

So there you are, Charles. You really were asking for that one. You couldn't have done different, could you have? A villain like Stryker must get in your face and scream bloody murder at you before you fail to trust him. It's what you are and what you do, and what you're expected to be and do.

Both of us are and do what is expected of us, you and I.

I wonder if you've acknowledged how much we really have in common. We trod the same path for so long that when we diverged from each other, we still did the same thing, simply for different purposes.

It wasn't even too long ago. How long ago was it, now? I forget. Twenty years? It couldn't have been twenty-five. Twenty-five years ago the issue that divided us didn't even exist. There were so few mutants, right before suddenly so many appeared at once. And the humans realized they had another minority to eradicate. When they were only starting to give up on persecuting people who loved like we did. It's almost as if they need to wish death on some group.

But really, I'm getting off the subject here. Whether you've acknowledged all this.

I know you haven't. You were the righteous one, and being righteous always requires a good amount of denial. And being pitted against me, your former ally, friend, and lover, required you to go into even more denial. I don't think you would feel comfortable if you were forced to acknowledge that we have a single thing in common. Besides what we were born as, but you don't think that defines a person. Though unconsciously, even our birthrights probably still bother you a little.

That I wouldn't blame you for. You'd have to be further into denial then I think you are to not acknowledge, at least, that my birthright played a large part in shaping my life. My mother's blood, my father's genes, my own sexuality. Though there I was luckier then you. I had a wife and daughter once. Before they were both killed because they were my wife and daughter. You also slept with women, but you never married one. There was something about losing my family that informed me that contrary to my wishes at the time, I was not to be a normal person. Maybe I wasn't quite so lucky after all.

Oh dear, I am getting sentimental. But you see, all this has been in my mind quite a lot lately. Must be the constant visits from you I've been getting. And being unable to do much else except think. And being interrogated about you, and Cerebro. I have noted that Stryker's little potion didn't work on you, and you are instead in a delusion where you don't know what you're doing. As you're no more helpless then I was, I very much envy you that, Charles.

We will run into each other again, won't we? I have the feeling that you'll make yourself leader of this new mutant-filled world, and then you'll hunt me down and have me tried for killing all the humans. It'll hurt, won't it? Just like what I'm doing now hurts me. But I'm long used to pain. You are too, I think. We do have a lot in common.

I wonder if this game we played made it worse. The constant eumphemism, "old friend," while we never mention that we were far more then friends, then our going out of our way to keep some odd distance, more then mere formality. That eumphemism seems to bite sometimes. And ever since it began, I can count on one hand how many times you've tried to probe my mind, even during these last few months when I've had no defense against you. Neither of us want that kind of connection. We've got enough trouble as it is.

As it is, I don't think we can let go of each other, no matter how much both of us want to. And I really have tried to move on. I'm even sleeping with Mystique here now, though I wouldn't call us lovers. It hasn't helped. You're in the same quandrary. I don't need to be a mindreader to know that. I've spent too much time playing chess with you over the last few months to not know. You probably won't object if they decide to hang me, even though normally you oppose the death penalty, but I'll haunt you the rest of your life. I must admit, that gives me a bit of satisfaction.

On the other hand, it really is a pity, as you seemed to achieve some measure of happiness which I've given up on. Aside from the whole human debate, that might be our biggest difference. The thought of being executed does bother me less because of it, especially since I've accomplished my mission. The mission which was pretty much all I had left to live for.

Which begs the question of why I'm leaving now. I'm not sure, actually. Maybe I still have some will to live. Maybe I want to see if Stryker has escaped, not that it would do him any good if he has, and wouldn't mind taunting him if he hasn't. Maybe it's just expected of me.

But anyway. I suppose I must thank you for making me happy for a good part of my life. You also distracted me for a good part of it, but now I think things have not turned out too much the worse for that.

In fact, if you had not been there after I lost my wife and daughter, I think I might have gone mad. That was a very painful blow, after all. So perhaps it did work out for the better.

Another thought just struck me. What happens to you when I take the consequences? Our affair is hardly unknown. Even those who aren't old enough to remember should guess, unless we speak of it openly, which we delibrately have not for years. That's part of the game.

Ah, Charles, I must stop thinking. When I came here, I determined to myself that I would not feel sorry, but I am starting to rather sorry that it came to this between the two of us. What happened to us? I am no longer sure. Something that set us down this road, so long ago.

I cannot stop thinking. It is extremely irksome, but it is to be expected. If I could have stopping loving you, I would have done that too.

But I really must cut this charade off; we are nearly out of the base now, and I must hope that Stryker has left a helicopter about.

He has; I can see it now, and Stryker has somehow gotten chained to it. Again, I don't know exactly why I'm trying to escape, as I have the feeling that you will be furious enough that you will hunt me down at all costs. Perhaps that is why.

Indeed, I am beginning to believe that certain things will always be true, Charles: we shall always work against each other, we will never mention what went on between us, and we shall never stop loving each other, even as our lives collapse amoungst us.


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