mattlauercansuckit: (x-group)
[personal profile] mattlauercansuckit
title the cleaners are coming one by one
author [ profile] patientalien
rating R
summary It begins on a Thursday morning, when mutants are ordered by an executive order from the White House, to report to the camps.
notes For [ profile] citizenjess, because I love her and she asked very nicely. Title from "O Children" by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.


#01 - Air
The air in Westchester is not exactly clear, but it's not a roiling mass of pollution either; it's just air.

#02 - Apples
Erik offers knowledge, Erik offers danger, Erik offers everything Charles has never wanted; Charles resists, barely, but does not cast the snake out of the garden.

#03 - Beginning
It begins on a Thursday morning, when mutants are ordered by an executive order from the White House, to report to the camps.

#04 - Bugs
Xavier's Institute is a school, nothing more, but Charles and Erik scan the mansion for listening devices several times a day, just to be safe.

#05 - Coffee
Charles never drank coffee before Erik came along, now he needs the energy to prepare for the fight that is sure to come.

#06 - Dark
Charles and Erik curl around each other in the dark places; Charles takes away Erik's painful memories, and Erik soothes Charles' soul.

#07 - Despair
Charles does not allow himself despair, even as he watches his fellow mutants be herded up like so much cattle; he knows when the time is right, all will be free.

#08 - Doors
He has the students reinforce the doors of the mansion; Erik provides the molded steel that will keep them safe - just in case.

#09 - Drink
The mansion's water comes from a well on the property, which Charles decides is a benefit when public services to known mutants are shut off across the country.

#10 - Duty
Erik proclaims their duty is to free the mutants who have already been sent to the camps; Charles thinks their duty is to the students who have not been.

#11 - Earth
They farm on the grounds, producing their own food and storing it away - the mansion has become self-sustaining, but beyond the gates there is anarchy.

#12 - End
The school's secret is discovered, and a Sentinel-led SWAT team attacks; Charles is their first target.

#13 - Fall
Erik's rage is a palpable thing, and he lashes out at the attackers who have threatened the life of his dearest friend; it's not the first time he kills, but it's the first time he kills for the sake of another.

#14 - Fire
The mansion burns, and from the embers, Magneto emerges.

#15 - Flexible
Charles Xavier adjusts to this new challenge as he does with all others; he knows he must keep calm for the sake of the students who have been captured with him.

#16 - Flying
The Blackbird is spared, sequestered under the tennis courts, and Magneto takes off, wishing he'd paid more attention to Hank when the blue-furred scientist tried to show him how it worked.

#17 - Food
Food is scarce in the camps; Charles makes sure to save a portion of his rations each day to distribute amongst the students.

#18 - Foot
It only takes Magneto a day and a half to find Stryker, hidden in a base at the foot of Cheyenne Mountain.

#19 - Grave
There is a mass grave just outside the camp, the dead not even getting the dignity of individual plots, or cremation.

#20 - Green
Magneto is surprised at how green the country is from above; on the ground, everything seems dark, and dead, much like Stryker, much like Fury.

#21 - Head
The device is secured tightly to Charles' head and cuts off his powers; he sees Emma across the camp one day, and her blonde hair is matted down under a similar device.

#22 - Hollow
He'd never thought he'd care about another person, not after Shaw and his mother (it hurt too much to get close), but Charles' absence leaves a hollow in his chest and makes him that much more determined to find him.

#23 - Honor
They say there's no honor amongst thieves, but Remy LeBeau is instrumental in helping Charles keep the guards' wrath from being taken out on the students.

#24 - Hope
He finds an enclave of mutants in the sewers; they call themselves Morlocks, and one has the ability to find other mutants - Magneto allows himself half a moment of hope.

#25 - Light
There are rolling blackouts in the camps, and Charles works by pale moonlight to comfort the youngest among them.

#26 - Lost
He does not want to admit he is lost; the Blackbird's navigation system has shorted out, and without Hank's wizardry with the plane, Magneto finds himself using the pull of magnetic north as his guidepost.

#27 - Metal
Charles realizes he is noticing all of the metal in use in the camp and can't help but have the fleeting thought that they will be safe if Erik can find them.

#28 - New
Magneto finds a new mode of transportation; the magnetic pull of the Earth itself provides all of the propulsion he needs.

#29 - Old
Charles feels much older than he is, his weary bones creaking as he rolls over in his hard bunk.

#30 - Peace
Some humans do want peace, want the camps to be disbanded; Magneto treats them just the same as all the others.

#31 - Poison
They are testing a cure on the mutants; the poison runs quickly through the camp and the mass grave overflows.

#32 - Pretty
The girl is pretty, for a human, but Magneto can't be bothered with her; he finds out what he needs, and uses the necklace she is wearing to strangle her without even breaking a sweat.

#33 - Rain
The rain is toxic, now, and burns holes through the flimsy tin roofs of the cabins.

#34 - Regret
Of all of the people Magneto has killed in his attempts to find Charles, he regrets Mystique the most.

#35 - Roses
The rosebush that has been planted over the first grave site flourishes, but to Charles, they are anything but beautiful.

#36 - Secret
Magneto raids an anti-mutant Congressional meeting, and manages to liberate the secret locations of the camps; the Morlock tells him which one the students are at, which tells him where he will find Charles.

#37 - Snakes
Charles never thought he'd be eating snake meat, but the creatures are plentiful and the students are starving.

#38 - Snow
Magneto arrives at the camp just as the first flakes of snow begin to coat the ground.

#39 - Solid
Even without his abilities, when the metal-sided cabins begin to shake, Charles knows it isn't just because the foundations are not solid.

#40 - Spring
He tells the students to be ready, and they lie in wait, preparing to spring into action as soon as they see Erik.

#41 - Stable
It takes some hours after removal of the inhibitor before Charles feels stable again, but knowing he is lying in Erik's arms makes the hours much more manageable.

#42 - Strange
After so long in captivity, it feels strange to be able to just... leave.

#43 - Summer
On Genosha it is always summer, and Magneto spirits them there, determined to keep his unlikely family safe.

#44 - Taboo
Being a mutant supporter is such a massive taboo that those who are suspected to be sympathizers are gunned down with as much ruthlessness as the mutants themselves.

#45 - Ugly
Charles can't believe how ugly the world has gotten, how hateful; he knows things need to change.

#46 - War
Magneto declares war, and Charles is not sure it will ever end; it does, eventually, but not without a price (they are safe, but never equal, and he's lost some good friends).

#47 - Water
Charles and Erik sit by the water, watching the children shout and play in the surf, testing their powers, unafraid once again to be themselves.

#48 - Welcome
On the mainland, they make it clear that Genosha welcomes all mutants, that all are safe and all are loved.

#49 - Winter
It is winter, but Charles doesn't feel it; they sit in front of a fire nonetheless and play chess - he can almost forget the past year.

#50 - Wood
Everything on Genosha is living metal, with the exception of Charles' bed, which is a rich mahogany; Erik constructed it himself, without his powers, which makes it all the more special (well, that and the fact Erik has taken up residence there himself - Charles falls asleep in his arms, safe and warm).

Date: 2011-10-18 12:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

I love your 50 sentence pieces and how you describe so much in so few words. Erik's love for Charles and need to protect him is so sharply underscored by the ruthless and coldblooded actions he engaged in to find him. Erik is endlessly fascinating to me in that regard. And, the bits about the camps were stark. Great story.

Date: 2011-10-18 01:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
One of the things I love about Erik is how he has these two sides that mesh together when it comes to Charles. He's just an awesome character to explore.

Also, the 50-sentence pieces are great for me because I always have trouble with longer scenes - I'm actually writing a Padme-centric "Suits" companion in that format right now. :)

Date: 2011-10-18 10:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Erik's a very complex character, and I like those kind the best. ;) I like what you did with him here.

Ah, yeah, I'm much the same way, mostly sticking to drabbles and short stories for that reason. I AM EXCITE FOR PADME'S POV. I feel like I'm in for some heartbreak.

Date: 2011-10-18 11:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The complex assholes seem to be my favorites. :)

Date: 2011-10-18 01:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I LOVE THESE. Seriously, the format here--wonderful. I love the world you sketch out, so vivid and stark in fifty lines. It breaks my heart and lifts it up in such a short span.

I loved the second sentence and was pulled in immediately--very sexy, very them. And throughout this they are entirely themselves, despite the AU. Charles being glad of the well, and then sharing his rations with the students--ffff. My heart, my heart. Erik's drive works out sort of better for him here, in that he ends up with Charles at Genosha, but what he does still comes with such a cost...and he is utterly determined to do it. Augghhh.

And the last one! With the bed he builds WITHOUT his powers--fdjnkfdsfjk. Mags, you sloppy romantic, you.

Chilling, beautiful, lovely. <3

(also YAY Remy and Emma, hah)

Date: 2011-10-18 02:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Like I was telling [ profile] ms_erupt, I love the 50 sentence fics because I love the form and what can be conveyed. Plus I have a hard time with long scenes, so there's that.

I'm glad they were themselves. :) I'm newish to writing X-Men, and I'm always afraid they're just going to turn into Anakin and Obi-Wan while I'm not looking. :P

:D I'm really glad you liked it! (And I adore Emma, obvs, and have a new appreciation for Remy.)

Date: 2011-10-18 03:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
On Anakin, sadkjjkda. I want to read Suits, because I <3 you and also Anakin being a douchebag in business wear appeals to me, but I'm just like "Ferus Olin? BUT WHO IS FERUS OLIN WHAT IS GOING ON?" And I can google, but should I, why is the cannon so big, god, what is going on.

But anyway: back to this. It is glorious, glorious. I like that #30 is in there to make the point that this is still Magneto, and it is he who rises from the ashes. It's easy to let AUs have him be suddenly mister happy time (and I want that a lot of the time, especially in nonpowered AUs), but in a setting with camps and Genosha...he should be ruthless.

Also, HOW DID I MISS THE NICK CAVE MENTION THE FIRST TIME? I love him so much. Almost as much as Tom Waits. Almost.

Date: 2011-10-18 03:40 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
OMG FERUS OLIN. How do I begin to describe Ferus fucking Olin? Okay, okay, you can find the "Jedi Quest" books online. Basically, Ferus is Anakin's rival when he's a Padawan and he's like the Perfect Padawan while Anakin is "Watch me while I break this rule". Ferus does all of his homework while Anakin smokes up in the Map Room. They occasionally have hate!sex and Ferus every-so-often tattles on Anakin to Obi-Wan who kind of just goes "At least my Padawan isn't boring". Ferus ends up leaving the Order when something Anakin does gets one of their friends killed and it is very sad. After he leaves the Order he becomes a lot cooler, and then he moves to Alderaan to watch over Leia and gets fat and changes his name to Fess Ilee, and tries to avoid Vader because the Dark Lord is a grudge-holding dick. So. Yeah. That's Ferus. I always forget that [ profile] citizenjess and I didn't invent him.

I'm really not a fan of happy fun times, as you might have noticed. :P Actually, I do like reading them, but they never come out right when I'm trying to write them. I just... I think if Erik were in this situation, he wouldn't be shmoopy Erik, he'd be I'm Gonna Fuck Your Shit Up Magneto the majority of the time.

I looooove Nick Cave. I would use lyrics from "O Children" for all my fic titles if I didn't know it would make me look like a huge weirdo.

Date: 2011-10-18 08:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
AMAZING. Thank you for this primer. I can totally see how you forget that he isn't your ~creation~ because he seems like a ridic perfect foil for Anakin. Seriously, this paragraph delighted me and "WATCH ME WHILE I BREAK THIS RULE" is a phrase that I need to use more often. Love it. ARMED WITH THIS KNOWLEDGE I SHALL BEGIN READING SUITS TONIGHT.

And I once went through a phase when I tried to title everything with Tom Waits lyrics, but I wasn't very good at it.

Date: 2011-10-18 11:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
YESSSS. Ferus Olin needs to be in everyone's life, IMHO.

I went through the same thing with Amanda Palmer. :\

Date: 2011-10-18 04:27 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"And the last one! With the bed he builds WITHOUT his powers--fdjnkfdsfjk. Mags, you sloppy romantic, you."

Look, Jews are just good at carpentry, okayyy.

Date: 2011-10-18 01:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

I lol'd. I lol'd hard.

Date: 2011-10-18 02:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Haunting and brilliant and in the end romantic.

Add me?

Date: 2011-10-18 02:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
:D Thank you so much! I added you - gotta warn you, most of my stuff is Star Wars. :)

Date: 2011-10-18 03:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This is both heartwarming and heartbreaking in spades. I think my favorite has to be the one about Magneto killing Mystique. Oh Raven. ;______;

Date: 2011-10-18 03:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm not sure what the backstory is behind that line, but it made me sad to write. :P

Date: 2011-10-18 03:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I don't know if I've read a fanwork like this before, but I love it. You've said and evoked so much with so little words; I particularly liked #10 and #14 -- and then, of course #50 because ♥

Date: 2011-10-18 03:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you so much! :D

Date: 2011-10-18 04:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Gorgeous! The format is so cool, and you say so much in such a small number of words. Well done!

Date: 2011-10-18 04:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Stuff that killed me: #10, because it's such a great way to showcase their differing philosophies; #14 because it's so simple, yet effective a deviation from canon; #18 because saving food for his students is SO FUCKING CHARLES; #21, because I feel like Charles can't help but empathize with Emma, and it's interesting that she also didn't escape this fate for whatever reason; #30, because again, Magneto will do whatever it takes. I grinned at Remy and whimpered at Mystique's fate; also, the reunion of Erik and Charles is so understated, but I guess any more than that would take away from all the other emotions percolating in the 'fic. Also, like Zombs, I am fagging out ridiculously over Erik's building the mahogany bed for Charles. OH BOYS. Oh, you. ♥

Date: 2011-10-18 01:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Agreed with you so hard on all points, especially #14.

And between the jesus joke and the casual use of "fagging out" (WHICH IS BASICALLY HOW I FEEL, YES) I have once again determined that we need to go to parties together.


dlkds, why must there be things to do; i wish to read your things and coo at you.

Date: 2011-10-18 01:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Jesus jokes and ironic homophobia is just how I roll~? Nah, I um, it is our colloquialism, but I will of course fall all over myself slavishly apologizing if someone happened to get offended over it. OF COURSE.

(Of course.)

Date: 2011-10-18 08:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I once dropped the term "art fag" in front of a group of theater kids (back when I was one) like it was no big deal (everyone uses it in south FL, seriously, everyone--but then we unironically called coke "yay" and shit, too) and everyone looked at me with big horrified eyes. And Z just, like, face palmed.

So yeeeahhh. Yeah.

Date: 2011-10-18 09:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think you can always tell whether someone is using it as a pejorative or not. LIKE, juuust the other day, I linked something on FB and one of my old co-workers was like HAW HAW JEWS DEMANDING REFUNDS. And it's just. It seemed kind of mean. Like I seriously just made a Jew joke in this thread, but hers made me wince; so I think it's all ~the way you say it~ sometimes? (Also, um, we are fags so we are giving you permission to say "fagging out" around us. So there.)

Date: 2011-11-03 03:03 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh wow, this is breathtaking and humbling. You are awesome, just. Wow.


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