Written for the "xmenfirstclass" livejournal community ficathon.

Specific request: It's like "The Ransom of Red Chief", times two. Scott needs to unwind, but Bobby and Hank are probably the worst people to get him to do it.

I have the best ideas!

Bobby has the worst ideas. As the older, more mature member of our duo, I should try to talk him out of these things. But his youthful enthusiasm is infectious, and I often find myself in strange situations as a result. This is no exception.

Bobby is easing open Scott's door, slipping inside and motioning me to follow. I shut the door behind me with a soft click, leaving us working by only the light of the full moon.

"I'll pack his bag," Bobby breathes. "You grab him!"

Bobby heads for Scott's bureau and I make for the bed in which Scott lies, unconscious and unsuspecting. Pausing, I query, "You're sure he won't wake up?"

"I switched his regular coffee for decaf," Bobby replies, stuffing clothes into a duffel bag. "He'll be out for days!"

Nodding, I heft Scott into my arms, careful not to wake him. Our fearless leader does have a tendency to "crash" without his daily dose of caffeine. "Make sure you grab his spare glasses," I remind Bobby.

"Glasses, bathroom stuff, shoes, shirts, shorts," he recites. "Heh, try saying that three times fast. I got everything."

"Clean underwear?"

Bobby scoffs. "We're guys Hank."

"Yes, but he's Scott." It's a gentle reminder that not everyone subscribes to Bobby's "they're clean as long as I turn 'em inside out" philosophy.

"Huh. Yeah." Bobby delves back into the drawer, pulling out a few pairs of briefs and adding them to the bag. "Alright, I've touched Scott's underwear. Now can we go?"

I am a genius. A cool one, not a nerdy one like Reed Richards, or an evil one like Magneto. Although we've kicked Magneto's butt plenty of times, so how smart can he really be?

Anyway, I'm a genius, and Hank is too, and we're sneaking through the hallways like ninjas. We are ninja geniuses! Mutant ninja geniuses, what could be cooler than that?

"Quickly, Hank-man!" I say. "To the Bat-mobile!" And Hank, because he's my best friend, doesn't even look at me funny, just raises an eyebrow and smiles and says, "I thought we were taking Warren's car?"

"Yeah, but 'Angel-mobile' sounds dorky. Shh! Hurry!"

We are genius ninja mutants, and we are kidnapping Scott Summers. This is my best idea ever!

I am strong, and Scott is nicknamed "Slim" for a reason, but he's still dead weight and it's a relief when I can deposit him into the backseat of Warren's convertible. We'd loaded our things earlier, leaving the car idling in the driveway so the rumble of the engine turning over wouldn't wake our abductee. Proper preparation is paramount to success of any perilous plan.

Bobby slides into the drivers seat and shifts the car into gear. As we amble past the gates, he leans over and whispers gleefully, "Hank, this is going to be the best spring break ever!"

I may be the Iceman, but I've got a lead foot, and thanks to it we make the Westchester to Miami drive in record time. Scott's still sleeping soundly, the way I do during one of the Professor's lectures. He looks peaceful. That won't last long!

Amazingly, Scott has slept through not just the drive, but also the motel check-in. Bobby carries the bags to our room, and I follow, cradling Scott. Thankfully, Bobby is too distracted to make a newlywed joke as I cross the threshold and place Scott on the bed.

"Ah, Bobby?" I look concernedly at him. "When you planned this expedition, did you include a strategy as to how we explain why Scott is waking up in a different state?"

He grins widely. "Sure did, Hankster! Watch this!"

Silly Hank. Of course I have a plan! I'm the man. The Iceman! The Iceman with a plan!

I form a handful of ice cubes and drop them down Scott's shirt. "Scott," I yell, "wake up!"

Oh dear.

Bobby's plan lacks subtlety, but certainly not effectiveness. Scott jolts awake, promptly falling off the bed and landing on his rump. Openmouthed, he stares at us from behind ruby quartz sleeping goggles. "What's going on?"

Bobby jumps onto the second bed and bounces merrily. "Me and Hank kidnapped you! Awesome, huh?"

Not the way I would have chosen to break the news, but I admire his directness. Not to be outdone - I am the bouncing Beast, after all - I spring onto what was Scott's bed and perform a handstand. From this vantage, Scott's frown is upside down, although he looks neither happier nor less confused.

He looks from Bobby to me. "You guys kidnapped me?


I grin widely. "Indeed, Mr. Summers. You have been abducted, snatched, spirited away. It was Bobby's idea," I add quickly.

"Uh-huh." Bobby nods proudly. "We left a ransom note, too!"

"True. You may be interested to know, Scott, that your safe return is assured so long as the Professor meets our demands for a years supply of Twinkies."

"And no more english literature homework!"

I frown. "I don't recall that being part of the deal."

"I added it last minute."

"You kidnapped me for Twinkies and no homework?" The question is muffled, as Scott has buried his face in his hands.

Bobby fields this question. "Of course not! We did for you, Scott. You need to relax! All work and no play makes Summers a dull boy! Duller than usual, and that's saying something."

I fill in the details. "Bobby and I were concerned about your mental state. You have been under quite a bit of stress. Yesterday, he and I were reminiscing about our own vehicular sojourn, and it was suggested that you may benefit from such a furlough."

"You kidnapped me so that I would be less stressed?"

"Well, when you put it that way-" I begin, but am interrupted.

"Yeah, we've established that. Dude, new question, please!" Bobby has abandoned the bed in favor of exploring the mini-fridge. "Hey, they have tiny bottles of booze in here!"

"Ooh, and little cans of nuts, too!" I grab one and go back to the bed, but Scott's ignoring me, staring at Hank.

"Are you on drugs?" he asks, incredulously. "Incredulously" is a Hank word. I'm going to start using it, though. Watch out, bad guys! I'm a genius mutant ninja, and I've got the vocabulary to prove it!

"Of course not, Scott!" Hank looks affronted. That's a Hank word too.

"Under the control of an evil telepath? Aliens? Shapeshifters? Shapeshifting aliens?" Scott keeps guessing, and I'm a little offended. This plan was pure Bobby, baby! No crazed monsters or mind bending chemicals needed!

I munch my nuts as Hank gabs. "All more likely occurrences than being under the influence of narcotics, but no. We're your teammates, Scott! We nabbed you because we care!" Hank flips right side up and gives Scott his biggest, most innocent grin.

Hank's innocent face isn't looking any more effective than mine usually is. Scott's turning red and that big throbby forehead vein is making an appearance.

Maybe we should go?

Perhaps we should leave.

Scott is looking angry - why can I never say no to Robert Drake? - and I quickly grab Bobby and pull him towards the door. "Well, you probably want to settle in," I call to Scott. "Bobby and I will do some reconnaissance, find the hot clubs, bring back some food, informsomeoneofourlastknownwhereabouts. Be back in a jiffy!"

We're out the door, sprinting down the street, stopping only once we're three blocks away. I look at Bobby and he beams at me, cheeks dimpling. "That went better than I thought it would," he declares.

In the interest of self-preservation, we agree we should avoid Scott for at least an hour, and search for a suitable purveyor of comestibles.

Miami has pizza places staffed by girls in bikinis. This is the greatest city ever! I elbow Hank when he starts to wonder aloud if that's a health code violation. Pizza! Girls in bikinis! The only better would be a girl in a bikini made out of pizza. Another genius idea by Bobby Drake, mutant ninja!

Hank's quiet on the way back to the motel. The empty room is quieter, though. "Hank? We did leave Scott here, right? I didn't just imagine him?"

"Yes, Bobby." He looks concerned. "It appears he's absconded."

"Oh. Okay. That's good. If I'm gonna imagine someone in a hotel with me, Scott would be a weird choice." Then I pinch Hank.

He looks startled and rubs his arm where I pinched it. "What was that for?"

"Just making sure I'm not imaging you."

Hank smiles, but he still looks worried. I peer around the room. Scott's bag is still here, and the car was out front. He couldn't have gone too far. "Hey, Hank. Wouldn't it be weird if someone kidnapped the guy we already kidnapped?"

It's highly unlikely Scott has been kidnapped. Again. And the empty bottles in the trash suggest a different story.

"I don't think he's been re-kidnapped, Bobby. I think he's drunk."

"He stole our teeny liquor bottles?"

"Not the bottles, no. Those are still here."

Bobby peers around my shoulder at the wastebasket. "Ohhh."


"There's a drunk Cyclops somewhere out there."

"It would appear so."

"We should probably find him."

"That would be favorable, yes."

We lost Scott!

But after a few hours we find him in an all-night karaoke bar, yelling out the lyrics to "Sunglasses at Night," so it's okay. At least until he goes missing again the next night.

In retrospect, we should have realized that Scott's "give 110" attitude could apply to play as well as work. All his wild side needed was a 70 proof jump start.

"C'mon, guys!" he shakes us awake on the fourth morning. "I signed us up for paintball!" Humming happily, he whisks open the curtains and strides into the bathroom. The sound of running water is soon heard.

"Hank. Do me a favor and kill me now," Bobby moans, flinging an arm up to cover his eyes.

"Kill yourself. I can't move." Our vacation, such as it is, has become more tiring than daily Danger Room sessions. During the day, Scott insists on as much outdoor activity as possible, be it pick-up volleyball matches or hot dog eating contests. Nights are reserved for the downtown. Letting him go off by himself is out of the question, as the second time he slips away we find him in a tattoo parlor, about to have Jean's name engraved on his bicep. Further details of our misadventures are mentally blocked, filed away in hope that the Professor will modify my memory. Some things are better forgotten.

All attempts to talk Scott into heading back to school early have failed. Telling him we're going out to eat, then heading to the freeway, was also unsuccessful. He merely hopped out of the car at the first intersection.

"He must be stopped."

Bobby grunts in response.

"I don't think it was legal, what he did with that hamster."

Another grunt.

"And I didn't know they even made tennis rackets that large."

This procures a groan.

"I think it's time to call the Professor."

Well, that jolts me awake. "We can't call the Professor! That would be admitting defeat! We don't have our Twinkies yet, Hank!"

I can tell Hank is serious, because he stops hiding under the covers and actually looks at me. "Bobby," he asks, "do you really want to be assaulted by high velocity paint pellets? We need to get out of here, and we can't return to school without Scott."

"Why not?" I whine. "We'll say he's joined the Brotherhood. It'll work! He is evil."

"The Brotherhood has disbanded."

"We'll say he's banding them up again. We can sneak out right now, he's in the shower! He'll be happy here, Hank, with the extreme parasailhangjumpfirewalking lessons. We kidnapped him and we can damn well unkidnap him!"

Hank throws the phone at me. "Call the Professor, Bobby."

And I do it, because Hank has the best ideas after me, and I can't think of anything better to do.

Bobby places the phone call, and I force myself from bed. Pajamas will do for the drive home, so I waste no time changing. I pack up all the bags and load them into the convertible's trunk. We're leaving today. If need be, Bobby and I can knock Scott unconscious. The irony that this whole trouble started with an unconscious Scott does not escape me.

Back in the room, I find Bobby staring morosely at the floor. I sit next to him and clear my throat. He sighs.

"The Professor's gonna help us."

I startle. "That's wonderful news, Bobby!"


He still looks down. "Why so glum, my frosty chum?"

Bobby coughs. "You remember the ransom note?"

I nod, unsure where this is going. "It was your 37th most worst idea."

"The Professor has, uh. He kinda unransomed Scott. Or outbid us. Or something. We have to bring him Twinkies now!"

That's strange. "I didn't know the Professor liked Twinkies."

"He doesn't!" Bobby wails. "He's teaching us a lesson." He shudders, and I try to suppress my grin. "And I have to do extra english lit assignments. It's horrible."

I chuckle, then. "More horrible than parasailhangjumpfirewalking?"

I'm rewarded with a snort. "Nah."

"Guys!" Scott tears out of the bathroom, banging into the doorjamb as he struggles to pull his shirt on. "The Professor just contacted me telepathically. We've got to get back to New York!" He does a double take at us sitting together, bags gone, and I toss him the car keys. He catches them and bolts out the door, his command to "hurry!" lingering after him.

I climb to my feet and offer Bobby a hand up. He grabs it and stands, giving me a squeeze before letting go.

"Hey, Hank?"


He's blushing when he meets my eyes. "I know this trip sucked, and I'll probably try to forget it ever happened, especially the part with Scott in a speedo, but... do you wanna try again, sometime?"

"Sure," I smile. Of course. I can't say no to Bobby.

Besides, he has the best ideas.