It's two forty five am and that green towel is draped across the sink, and you hate the look of it.
Nathan has only been asleep for two hours now, and your feet ache, your breasts ache, and the fact that you're the only one here with him gets harder and easier every day. Easier because you are getting better at knowing what he needs, and spending time keeping Scott out of your thoughts. Harder because the second he's asleep, the loneliness and anger fills you and the rest of the cabin up until there's hardly anything to do but sink into the grief of it all.
You still haven't told anyone that Scott walked out. You don't think you could take it if a friend of yours sided with him right now -- he wasn't supposed to take the ultimatum and leave. He was supposed to finally admit that he wanted you and Nathan and this marriage. Not the fighting, the missions, everything else.
But he had, hadn't he? He'd walked right out that door, had left you with that stupid green towel to catch your tears, until Nathan had woken up and you had to find some way to live. And you have; you've fed him, clothed him, bathed him. Sang him to sleep, petted his hair. Soaked up the gurgles he's made, smiled when he's reached for your hair, nuzzled into his cheeks.
You've lived, for him. And yourself?
You reach over and wring the towel out instead of throwing it away. You do it until it runs dry and your knuckles hurt, and it seems like the urge to cry goes out of you. It's been weeks; and you're Madelyne Pryor. You're not Jean Grey, you're not his old flame. You're not some wondrous mutant with super powers; you're just you, mother to a child who's father didn't seem to care if he existed.
Even if Nathan wasn't going to be loved by Scott, you were going to love him.
So you drop onto the couch, exhausted and unwilling to crawl back into your marriage bed just yet. You'll change the locks tomorrow, and maybe some trash tv can cheer you up.
You turn the television on, and for awhile, it does. Not that there's much to be found in Anchorage in ways of entertainment; you mostly spot local faces, and the commercials for plane services makes your heart jump into your throat. Hadn't you given that up, for Scott? You swallow the lump, and it passes.
And then another ad plays: one for X-Factor. A shiver runs up your spine as the commercial plays, promising an end to the mutant problem. Guaranteeing that it's agents could take care of urgent problems, all with a toll free number.
You shiver, in the darkness of the house. Your throat gums up and you think of Scott, how he'd told you before he left that he was needed. All of the silences he gave when you accused him of being unwilling to let other mutants defend themselves. And here was this: a commercial telling you that someone could have him investigated and killed in a moment's notice.
You bury your head in your knees, and breathe through your nostrils until you can stop the heat climbing up your cheeks and the tears that threaten to overwhelm you.
It was his choice. It was his choice. But you don't want him dead.
(Molly wakes up in the warmth of a hotel room, and Adam's body pressed against hers. For a second, she almost asks for Scott. And then remembers that she's not Maddy. It's just Maddy's memories, messing with her again. She huffs into her pillow, pulls the covers up, tucks them around her side, and goes back to sleep.)