The Ice Queen Cometh


The Ice Queen Cometh
By
Morpheus

After the super hero group known as the X Men encounter a mysterious and unknown mutant, two of them are drastically altered. This Fan Fiction was written in 2003 and reflects the status quo in the comics at that time.

Part 1 of 6

It was a calm, peaceful morning, with a layer of fog blanketing the green hills and farmer's fields. There were large clusters of trees in the distance, nearly appearing to sprout straight out of the mist itself. And then there were several farm houses and barns nearby as well, though not a human in sight.

Suddenly, a strange whining hum broke the silence, quickly followed by a dark figure descending from the sky. As the figure got closer to the ground, it would have been apparent to any witness that it was an aircraft...a strange black aircraft, and also one of the most advanced ones on the face of the planet.

Once the black jet had settled to the ground in a near perfect vertical landing, the engines turned off and the strangely quiet noise that they generated, at least in comparison to normal jets ceased. It remained motionless for a minute before a hatch on the bottom opened and a ramp descended to the ground.

A figure slowly stepped down the ramp, pausing on the grassy ground beneath the jet. He was a tall man, tall and athletic. This brown haired man was dressed in a strange dark gray uniform with yellow trim, as well as several noticeable yellow X's. All in all, the uniform almost could have passed as street clothes. Almost. And as a final touch, the man wore a golden visor with a red lens over his eyes, giving the illusion that it could have nearly been a single alien eye.

Scott Summers was the man's name, though he was more commonly known by the name of Cyclops in some circles, due to the visor over his eyes and his mutant ability to fire optic blasts from his eyes...energy blasts of immense force. He was the first person to ever be called an X Man and had long been the team’s field leader.

After Cyclops had taken a quick look around, seeing no one else in sight, he announced, "Come on," not even looking back at the people he was speaking to.

With that, the other X Men on his current team began to come down out of their jet as well. The first was a strange mutant who was humanoid in shape, but somewhat bestial in appearance. His very head had a strong resemblance to that of a lion, though the fur that covered his body was all blue. This was the mutant known as the Beast, being as strong, fast and agile as any that lived. However, in spite of his appearance and code name, Dr. Henry McCoy was anything but a brutish animal. He was long known as a brilliant scientist.

Next came a man in a red and dark gray costume which looked somewhat like lightweight armor. He had long blonde hair and a pair of white feathered wings on his back which had earned him the name of Archangel.

Just a few steps behind Archangel came a brown haired man, wearing a blue and white costume which was barely visible beneath the long black overcoat that he had taken to wearing. As soon as Bobby Drake, better known as Iceman reached the ground, he glanced back at the gorgeous blonde woman in the skimpy white costume who was taking her time coming down the ramp.

The woman was Emma Frost, once known as the White Queen, one of the X Men's worst enemies, and a powerful telepath second only to Professor Xavier himself. But that was before several tragedies had caused her to reconsider her life.

Then the final member of their current group joined them. He was a huge man, a 7 foot tall mound of massive muscles known as the Juggernaut. And like Emma Frost, he had once been one of the X Men's enemies...one of their oldest and most powerful foes, motivated by hatred of his stepbrother Charles Xavier, the founder of the X Men himself.

It seemed a further irony that Cain Marko, the Juggernaut could now count himself as a member of the X Men, especially since he was not even a mutant. He was one of the extremely few non-mutants to have held the honor of being an X Man, having gained his unbelievable strength and massive physical power from a magical artifact rather than the simple twist of fate which caused a mutation in a mutants DNA.

Once everyone had left the jet, they gathered around Cyclops, who was still staring out around them, grim expression on his face, which was nothing new. He took his responsibilities as team leader very seriously.

For a moment, all of them stood there, silently thinking about their mission. There had been reports of strange lights in the area, which normally would not have been enough to attract the X Men's attention in the least. However, their mutant detection system Cerebra had picked up a strong spike of mutant activity in the same location. A spike of activity which Professor Xavier thought could be either a powerful mutant using their powers or a powerful new mutant whose powers were just manifesting. In either case, he thought it important enough to send a team of X Men to investigate.

Finally, Cyclops glanced at the Beast. "Hank?" he asked.

With that, the Beast held up a small device he was holding and stared at it, adjusting a knob. He nodded faintly before answering, "The scanner is detecting a strong energy source. It appears that our quarry is a short distance approximately northeast of us." Then he pointed in the direction.

Cyclops nodded faintly, then looked at Emma, "Do you sense anything?" His voice was tense as he looked at her, obviously wishing that his wife Jean had not been occupied with other business and had been there to be their telepath for the mission instead.

Emma Frost looked in the direction that the Beast had indicated, her haughty expression softening into one of concentration for a moment before she answered carefully, "I sense...something. But it's very faint. Not enough to make out."

Once again, Cyclops nodded faintly, then he looked at Archangel. "If you would Warren..."

"I'm on it," Archangel responded, spreading his feathered wings and launching into the sky to scout the area.

While that was happening, Iceman glanced over at Emma, though trying to appear as though he was not. He carefully constructed the mental exercises that Professor Xavier had long since taught him to help protect his thoughts from being read by a telepath. At the moment, he didn't want Emma to read his mind.

Iceman, Bobby frowned slightly, still feeling a little odd working alongside the White Queen, though that was no stranger than working alongside the Juggernaut. However, his relationship with Emma Frost, the former White Queen was somewhat...complicated.

Though he wouldn't ever admit it, Bobby had a lot of admiration for Emma. She was a beautiful, intelligent and sophisticated woman. On the other hand, she was something of a grade A bitch who used to try killing the X Men. But his relationship with her was a little more personal than that.

Once upon a time, back when Emma had still been the White Queen and ran her own rival school to Xavier's, training young mutants for her own organization the Hellfire Club, she had been attacked by another enemy. An enemy who had killed most of Emma's students and left her in a coma. However, that was just the beginning.

When Emma came out of her coma, it had been to instinctively possess the body of the nearest person...who just happened to be Iceman. If that had not been bad enough, she had run off in his body, using his powers even better than he could, in ways that he had not even considered. It was because of this even more than the possession that he had hated her for awhile, and even now that resentment had not completely faded.

Of course, Bobby and Emma had long since kissed and made up, at least in the metaphorical sense, but the memories remained.

Just then, Iceman's thoughts were interrupted as Archangel landed back in front of them. "There's just a big glowing ball of light..."

"Let's check it out," Iceman commented.

And with that, Iceman's body shimmered and transformed, becoming the bluish white of pure ice. This was the ultimate manifestation of his mutant powers, the ability to manipulate ice and cold temperatures. Once he had merely covered himself with a coat of ice armor, though his powers had evolved to the point where he became solid living ice.

At the same time that Iceman had transformed, Emma Frost underwent a surprisingly similar transformation. Her body shimmered and became crystalline, an extremely hard organic diamond that made her nearly indestructible. Once she had been only a telepath, but her powers had recently changed, giving her the new added power of invulnerability, but at the small cost of her telepathy while in that form.

"Let's go," the Juggernaut grumbled, looking impatient. "At the rate we're standing around here, I'll miss tonight's Sopranos."

Without a word, Cyclops gestured to Archangel, who took to the air again. Then he stared walking towards the energy signature that Beast was detecting, the glowing ball of light that Archangel had reported. The other's followed behind.

Iceman smirked, then held out his hand, a blast of intense cold coming from it and creating an ice bridge, a sheet of ice which he slid along while creating more ice in front of him. This way, he quickly got ahead of the others though he avoided leaving them too far arrived.

A minute later, they all arrived at the spot and paused, seeing exactly what Archangel had reported. There was a mostly empty field with a big barn just a short distance away. But right in the middle was a dome of glowing yellow light. A faint human shaped figure, little more than a shadow, could barely be seen in the middle of it.

"Doesn't look much like Magneto to me," Iceman commented, feeling a bit relieved that it didn't appear to be an 'evil' mutant. Fights with powerful mutants like him who had a grudge against the world could be extremely dangerous. And lethal.

"There's someone in there," Juggernaut gasped, just noticing the figure for the first time.

"Interesting," the Beast mused, almost to himself, "It would appear that the theory of this being the manifestation of a mutant's abilities is the correct one. However, that does beg the question of what exactly those abilities might be..."

"It doesn't look too dangerous," Archangel commented as he landed again.

Iceman nodded faintly, moving closer for a better look. He iced down, reverted to his human form as he stepped next to the glowing bubble, being careful not to touch it as he tried peering within. However, that didn't make his view of what was inside any clearer.

"Can you try reading him again Emma,?" Cyclops asked.

"I'll try," she responded, shifting from her diamond form back to human so that she could regain the use of her telepathic powers. And with that, Emma stepped even closer to the bubble, a look of deep concentration on her face.

Suddenly, the bubble of light expanded outward, enveloping both Iceman and Emma. Cyclops yelled a warning to the others and they jumped back, though the bubble had only expanded out several feet before stopping again.

"Bobby!" Archangel cried out.

"Bobby, Emma...can you hear me?" Cyclops yelled to them, though there was no response.

"Want me to bust through?" Juggernaut growled, pounding one of his massive fists into his other palm. He glared at the bubble as if he were looking forward to smashing it flat along with whoever was inside.

"Not just yet," Cyclops stated grimly.

"Attempting to do so without being aware of the energies nature could prove quite detrimental," Beast added, while the Juggernaut looked at him blankly. "We need to..."

But before the Beast could complete the sentence, the bubble started to shimmer again, shifting colors slightly before just...popping. The whole energy dome just vanished completely, leaving no trace that it...or the person within had been there just an instant before. No trace except for the motionless bodies of Iceman and Emma Frost which were sprawled on the ground.

"Bobby! Emma!" Beast, Archangel and Cyclops exclaimed nearly simultaneous.

The Beast rushed to their sides, quickly looking them over. "They're just unconscious," he announced, though still looking a little worried.

Cyclops took a quick look around the spot where the glowing dome with the shadowy figure had existed such a short time earlier. He grimaced, turning his attention back to his downed team mates. "Let's get them back to the mansion. NOW."

--------------------

Iceman, Bobby Drake felt lost in a sea of images and feelings, until he woke up with a start, realizing that he'd been dreaming. A strange dream, but a dream nonetheless. He slowly started to sit up, grunting slightly as he did so. He felt...off.

Suddenly Bobby felt a pair of hands grabbing his shoulder, and as he opened his eyes, he found himself staring into the furry blue feline face of the Beast, his longtime friend Hank. Hank snapped around, calling to someone behind him, "Emma's awake..."

"What...?" Bobby blinked in confusion, trying to piece together how he got there when the last thing he remembered was being by that glowing bubble.

Hank looked back at Bobby and asked, "Are you all right Emma?"

"What's this Emma crap?" Bobby asked in confusion, "It's me...your old buddy Bobby. I know you're older than me, but don't tell me that you're going senile already."

Bobby noticed a look of shock on Hank's face, though didn't think too much of it as he sat the rest of the way up. Then he paused, realizing that something was wrong. It was hard to put his finger on it, but he just didn't feel right.

Just then, Bobby looked down at himself, his eyes going wide in shock at what he saw. Instead of his own uniform, he was wearing the skimpy white costume that was normally on Emma's luscious body. But what was even more shocking was the fact at just how perfectly the costume fit him...

"Um...I don't think this is good," Bobby muttered as he poked at the two generous breasts that now adorned his chest. Another long look at his body indicated that it wasn't just Emma's costume that he seemed to be wearing. From what he could see....he was wearing her whole body. "This is definitely not good."

With that, Bobby looked around, seeing that he was in the medical bay, which considering his situation, whatever that actually was, was not a real surprise. Hank was standing there, staring at Bobby, while Annie, their attractive human nurse stood in the background.

Bobby stood up, staring at his hands, at his feminine fingers. He reached back, tugging lightly on his now long blonde hair. With a grimace, he looked down at himself yet again, seeing the familiar woman's body that had somehow become his own.

"Um...as rarely as I am at a lack for words Emma," Hank started uncertainly.

"It's BOBBY!" he snapped back in frustration, slamming his hand down onto the bed he'd awoken on.

For a moment, Hank just stared at the bed which was now half coated with a sheet of ice. Then he turned his attention back to the apparent woman before him and slowly responded, "Very well...Bobby." He took a few seconds more to compose himself then glanced at the ice on the bed. "It would appear that we have a situation..."

"YOU THINK?" Bobby blurted out, gesturing down at himself.

Annie blinked as she stared at Bobby, "You...you're really Bobby..." She sounded as though she was sure he was joking. At his sour nod, she gasped, not sure what to say to that and finally responding, "You're it kind of...," she searched for the word, "easily."

Bobby snorted, "When you've been an X Man as long as I have, you kind of get used to all sorts of weird things." Then he shrugged, trying not to freak out and embarrass himself, "This is just par for the course."

"Actually," Hank told Annie, "this is not much stranger than having the Juggernaut on the X Men."

Just then, a there was a beeping sound from a short distance away. Hank immediately looked over there and announced, "Bobby...Emma, or at least I would assume that it is Emma who is awakening in Bobby's body." Then he shook his head, "Alas, these matters of identity can be quite confusing."

As Bobby hurried to the other bed where his own body was beginning to move, he was irritated by the strange sensations that he felt from his body, especially the weight and jiggling that came from his breasts. They were so...noticeable.

But then Bobby was distracted from the strangeness of his body by the sight of himself sitting up. It was odd to see his own body from such a different perspective and just as odd to know that Emma Frost was inside of it once again. Yet that was still not quite as strange as the realization that he was in her body as well.

Then, Bobby's body sat the rest of the way up, its eyes opening and looking around in confusion. However, a second later, they locked on Bobby and went wide, an expression of shock and disbelief spreading over his face. But that only lasted for several seconds before the person within Bobby's body looked down and gasped again.

"What the blazes is going on?" the firm demand came. The voice was Bobby's, though the tone was pure Emma Frost.

"Well," Bobby started, not sure how to explain what he didn't know himself.

However, Emma frowned, a strange look passing over her face before she nodded, "I see..." She did not sound very pleased though. In fact, she glared at Bobby as though the whole situation was his fault.

"Please do not read my mind without my permission," Hank told her in irritation. Then he frowned thoughtfully, "Though it would appear that you do still retain your normal powers..."

"Yes," Emma responded, "I still have my telepathic abilities..." Then she shimmered and crystallized, turning into organic diamond before quickly reverting to 'normal'.

With a grimace, Bobby held out his hand and formed a ball of ice within it. A second later, his body shimmered as well and he transformed into ice, looking like an ice statue of Emma Frost. He nodded faintly, though he frowned deeply as he returned to flesh.

"This is most unusual," Hank thought aloud, staring at the two of them more out of curiosity now than anything else. "You appear to have somehow exchanged personas, yet you retain your own mutant abilities within your new bodies. Fascinating..."

Bobby groaned at that, knowing that Hank was slipping into his absentminded scientist mode and thinking of this as just another puzzle to solve. And to Bobby, this was personal and he didn't want to be stuck like that for moment longer than necessary.

"Fascinating it may be," Emma announced coldly, "But I would much prefer to get my own body back. I do not relish the idea of remaining in this body any longer than necessary." She said 'this body' as though it were something disgusting.

Though Bobby completely agreed with Emma's desire to get back to normal, he glared at her, as though it were all her fault, "If I didn't know better, I'd almost think that you liked being in my body. After all, this is the second time you've taken it..."

Emma glared back at him, "Then I suppose it is a good thing that you do know better."

Annie looked a little confused at this. "This happened before?" She was new to the strangeness that surrounded the X Men and all the students at the school.

"Yeah," Bobby forced a grin, "Emma's an experienced body thief. She took mine out for a joyride once before, and then there was the time she stole Storm's body..."

Emma paused, remembering that incident and wondering if this was some sort of karmic payback. It had been years ago, back when she had been the White Queen and trying to destroy the X Men. She stole Storm's body in order to infiltrate them, though things hadn't quite worked out as planned.

"That was a long time ago," Emma commented, trying to keep her voice steady.

Suddenly both Bobby and Hank looked at Emma, a thoughtful look on both of their faces. "I believe that you used some form of portable persona exchange device when you...borrowed Storm's body?"

"Yes," Emma nodded, "It was a gun..." But then she sighed, "I know what you're thinking and I'm afraid that it won't work. That device was destroyed a long time ago and I have no idea how to locate a new one..."

"A pity," Hank muttered, "It would have made this much simpler."

"Actually," Emma thought aloud, "Even if I did still have that gun, it still wouldn't solve all of our problems. It might restore us to our proper bodies, but it wouldn't return our powers with us." She frowned, "As much as I dislike this body, I do not like the thought of losing my powers either..."

Bobby nodded faintly at that, knowing how she felt. He didn't like the thought of having to lose his powers either. They were a part of him...just as much as his hands were. And he'd heard that it was especially hard for telepaths to lose that power. That it was like losing one of their senses, like their vision or hearing. If they could both get back to normal without having to lose their powers, so much the better.

"So that leaves us where?" Bobby snorted. Then he frowned deeply, "How did this happen anyway. I mean, the last thing I remember was standing by that dome..."

Hank nodded, then explained how they had been pulled inside, then left behind when the dome vanished. "There was no trace of whatever caused your exchange," he told them. "Or whoever."

For a long moment, Bobby stared at Emma, seeing that she stared back at him, though she was doing it a little more casually and not being as noticeable. It was so strange to see himself like that. He frowned more, fighting back the urge to look down at himself again.

Then Hank abruptly announced, "Suddenly, I am reminded of Psylocke. Your situation bears a remarkable degree of similarity to her transformation."

Though neither Bobby nor Emma had ever been very close to Psylocke, they knew exactly what Hank had been referring to.

Psylocke had been a strange case, even among the X Men. She had started out as a proper British lady, albeit one with purple hair and telepathic mutant powers. But then, a sorceress named Spiral had played a strange game, making Psylocke trade bodies with a Japanese woman, a ninja assassin called Kwannon. Somehow, Psylock's mutant powers and unusual hair color had been transferred to her new body, just as her mind was. And at the same time, Psylocke somehow gained all of Kwannon's ninja skills as well, and perhaps a dose of her personality as she soon went from being prim and proper to being a tough as nails fighter.

"You think that Spiral might be behind this?" Bobby asked, feeling worried at the thought.

However, Hank just shrugged. "Honestly Emma...Bobby, I do not know. I fear that it might be one possibility. Another possibility is that the shadowed figure that we witnessed within the energy dome truly was a young mutant in the early manifestation stage of his or her powers. This could very well be a result of those uncontrolled new abilities."

"And this young mutant disappeared without a trace," Emma sighed, giving what little they did know for a fact.

Hank nodded at that, not looking any happier about it than Bobby felt. "I fear so."

"So," Bobby sighed, "Where's the professor....?"

"He departed for that conference on mutant affairs with Jean shortly after our own mission departure," Hank sighed. "We will have to contact him regarding this rather unexpected exchange..."

"Regardless of the cause, and whether or not we have Charles' immediate help," Emma stated grimly, "we have to find a way back to our own bodies."

"I second that," Bobby added, glancing down at his body, at his new breasts and then tearing his eyes away.

He quickly pulled up his mental defenses, just as the professor had taught him, to keep Emma from reading his surface thoughts. It was embarrassing enough to be in her body and he didn't want any reason to be even more embarrassed, which would definitely have happened had she seen what he'd been thinking.

"Therein lies part of the problem," Hank announced while Bobby was lost in thought. "Are we even certain that the two of you exchanged bodies...?"

"Well...DUH!" Bobby exclaimed, gesturing down at himself.

Emma echoed his thoughts with a loud snort, "I would think that it would be obvious."

"Or not so obvious," Hank told them, absently rubbing at his furry chin as he looked at them each in turn. "The fact that you both possess your own mutant abilities does provide an inconsistency. Or several alternate theories." At Bobby's blank look and Emma's deepening scowl, Hank quickly continued, "It would appear that some agency has resulted in the exchange of both your personalities and your powers. However, since you retain your powers, there is another possibility in that this agency may not have actually exchanged your minds, but may have somehow transformed your bodies to more closely resemble each other."

"ENOUGH WITH THE TECHNICALITIES," Bobby nearly screamed at his friend, "How do we get back to normal?"

There was a long pause as Hank stared at Bobby, then adjusted his glasses. Then in almost uncharacteristic simplicity, he answered, "I don't know."

"You don't know...," Bobby and Emma answered almost simultaneously.

"Not yet," Hank added in a rush, "But I will. Trust me," He put a hand on Bobby's shoulder, "We will find a way to reverse this. But to do so, we will need more information."

Once Hank explained that he was going to have to do a thorough medical test on each of them, both Bobby and Emma groaned. Neither liked the idea, though they knew that it might be necessary to get back to normal. And at the moment, that was the most important thing.

"It's going to be a long day," Bobby sighed, glancing over at Emma in his body, then down at himself, "A long day..."

The Ice Queen Cometh
part 2 of 6
By Morpheus

Bobby Drake scowled as he hurried down the hallway of the mansion, relieved that the medical examination with Hank was over with but wishing that his time in Emma's body was as well. Thankfully though, the examination had been a lot quicker and a lot less intrusive than he'd feared. In fact, it hadn't even taken half an hour, and he'd spend most of it just lying inside of some MRI type tube.

"And here I was afraid he was going to tell me to turn my head and cough," Bobby muttered to himself.

Then Bobby looked around at all the teenagers he was walking past in the hall and shaking his head faintly. He was still amazed at seeing so many people around the mansion. It was so different from when he had first come there, when Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters had only had five students and it had been mostly a cover for the X Men. But that had been long ago, before the X Men had grown, and of course, before Professor Xavier had recently opened the school up for all young mutants. No longer was it just a training ground headquarters for the X Men, now it actually was a school, giving young mutants a place to be educated and be accepted.

"I don't think I'll ever get used to the mansion being so crowded," Bobby sighed.

"Hi Ms. Frost," a voice called out from behind Bobby. He started to turn to see where Emma was, until he remembered that at the moment HE was Emma. Or at least that was what anyone who saw him would think.

Bobby looked at the source of the voice and it took him a moment to recognize Chalk. Chalk was a 17 year old mutant who had come to the school just the week before. He was 6 foot 3, very well-muscled and had earned his name from his pure white skin and hair.

It was only then that Bobby noticed the expression on Chalk's face. It was...extremely unnerving. And it was only then that Bobby remembered one of the other's mentioning Chalk, and specifically, saying that the teenager had a major crush on Emma. That realization suddenly made Bobby go pale.

"Hi Chalk," Bobby quickly responded, "I've got to go..."

And with that, Bobby hurried away to the safety of his room, where he quickly closed the door behind him and let out a long sigh of relief. It was a good to finally be away from all those eyes, those eyes which looked at him and only saw Emma. He cringed at the obvious lust that had been directed at him.

Bobby just wondered how Emma dealt with that all the time, especially with her telepathic powers. Then he snorted, "She probably gets off on it..."

Closing his eyes for a moment, Bobby just stood there, taking several deep breaths as he tried to calm down. However, it wasn't helped much by the fact that with every breath, he could feel the slight shifting of his new breasts.

"Take it easy," Bobby told himself firmly, "You're an X Man, damn it! You've seen things a lot weirder than this..."

With that, Bobby moved to his bedroom mirror and stopped, staring at the reflection of Emma Frost. She was just as beautiful in his mirror as she was standing across a room. However, the reflection did lack the confidence and poise that Bobby normally associated with Emma.

"Weird," he muttered, "Even for the X Men."

A moment later, Bobby willed himself to ice up, transforming himself into his icy form. He looked at the mirror again, seeing what looked like an ice statue of Emma. Bobby let out a faint sigh, relieved that he at least still had his own powers. He could just imagine how much more trouble he would have been in if he and Emma had swapped powers as well as bodies. Then again, he thought that it might be interesting to see what it was like reading minds.

Once Bobby had iced down, he continued to stare at himself, until finally he started to smirk. He'd always wanted to see Emma naked, and he doubted that he'd ever have another opportunity like that. Bobby wasted no further time in stripping out of Emma's skimpy costume.

"Wow," Bobby whispered, then let out a low wolf whistle at himself. Emma's body was just as nice as he'd always imagined. Of course, her costume hadn't really left a lot to the imagination.

Bobby was feeling rather satisfied by the sight of Emma's naked body, and even somewhat excited. The sensations were simultaneously similar to and different than normal. But then he paused, suddenly feeling extremely uncomfortable with the situation.

"God, I hope I'm not stuck like this," Bobby told himself grimly, hating the idea that he just might be. "Hank and the professor will find a way to fix this. They have to..."

With that, he sat down, realizing that he probably wasn't going to get too much sympathy from the others. After all, Hank had gone from fairly normal looking to blue and furry while Warren had been changed quite drastically himself for a period. And since Bobby had been something of the class clown back when it was just the original X Men, he suspected that they'd probably think of this as some sort of karma.

"Some joke," he muttered, feeling less than amused.

Then with that, Bobby did the only thing he could at the moment. He turned on the TV then sat back and waited.

--------------------

The X Men's conference and briefing room was state of the art, containing not only the best image projection and communication technology available on Earth, but some from beyond it as well. And the technology did not end there, extending even to the seats that surrounded the meeting table, seats which were capable of being easily adapted to physiology's that were other than normal.

At the moment, every member of the X Men who had been on that morning's mission was seated around the table, as were most of the other X Men who were currently at the mansion. It was not the full team compliment as others were as yet on missions, yet there was still enough mutant power collected there to overthrow a small country.

The Juggernaut sat in a seat that had been adapted to support his massive weight, though he made little secret of the fact that he would prefer to be sitting on a bar stool. One in an appropriate location, and having a beer in his hand.

One of the X Men who had not been present that morning was Nightcrawler, an acrobatic blue mutant who held some semblance to a demon thanks in no small part to his long pointed tail. However, in truth he was anything but evil, having served as an X Man and a hero for many years.

Northstar sat with the near perpetual scowl on his face, wearing his standard black and white costume. This Canadian was a newcomer to the X Men, though not to super heroing. He had been a longtime member of another super hero team called Alpha Flight, and was now not only an X Man, but the first homosexual X Man as well. However, such a distinction was inconsequential among a group that included two blue mutants and another with wings.

And though no one spoke of it yet, all attention was on Bobby Drake and Emma Frost, who both sat uncomfortably in their seats. It was obvious that everyone already knew of what had happened, which made Bobby extremely uncomfortable. Emma on the other hand sat up straight, her normal snobbish expression looking odd on Bobby's face, ignoring the looks and trying to pretend that there was nothing wrong.

"I told the professor about what happened," Cyclops started off, drawing everyone's eyes to him, to Bobby's relief. "He'll return from the conference as soon as possible, but in the meantime, I'm sure that Hank can find a solution."

With that, the Beast stood up, adjusting the glasses which looked slightly odd perched on his feline face. He looked at Bobby and Emma and started, "I performed a detailed medical examination of our two unfortunate exchanges. As far as I can tell, they are indeed within each other's bodies, though that does not rule out other possibilities."

"We went back to the field and double checked," Cyclops said, "But there was absolutely no trace of the mutant responsible for this."

"If it is a mutant who did it," Archangel pointed out. "It could have been a trap."

Cyclops nodded his head to acknowledge that. "Once Jean or the professor return, they'll be able to use Cerebra to try searching for the mutant signature that the professor spotted this morning."

"Why wait," Emma pointed out, "I am perfectly capable of using Cerebra myself."

Again Cyclops nodded, knowing that Cerebra, their mutant tracking device required a telepath to use it. Emma was indeed quite capable of using it, though with her being the one affected, he hadn't thought she would be capable. "Very well. See what you can find."

"Of course," Emma responded, the snobbish tone clear even though it was Bobby's voice. He shook his head slightly, thinking about how strange it was to hear his own voice like that.

"Until we find out more," Cyclops announced, slowly looking around the room, the single red 'eye' of his visor looking slightly intimidating, "we all need to be careful. If this was a trap, it's unlikely that whoever was behind it is through with us."

With that said, everyone got up to leave. It had been a much shorter briefing than normal, with everyone having already been filled in on what had happened beforehand. However, Cyclops knew the value of discipline and making sure that everyone was not only well informed but on the same page.

Just as Bobby left the briefing room, he felt a hand on his shoulder and turned around, startled to see that it was Northstar. That was surprising since he knew that Northstar didn't really like women and avoided touching them when possible. And unfortunately, Bobby knew that at the moment, that was exactly what he was. At least physically.

"You look...uncomfortable," Northstar told Bobby. He looked a little uncomfortable as well and not quite his arrogant self. "I thought you should know that something similar happened when I was in Alpha Flight."

"Yeah?" Bobby blinked, his interest definitely caught.

Northstar nodded, "Yes. My old teammate Sasquatch had his soul trapped in Snowbird's body, yet he kept his own powers as well."

Bobby stared at Northstar for a moment, knowing that the last time he'd seen Sasquatch, he had definitely been a guy. "How did he get back to normal?"

"He did not handle it well," Northstar continued. "And in the end, he was transformed back." Then just as Bobby was about to ask how, Northstar admitted, "I'm afraid that the same way won't work for you...but I thought you should know."

"Thanks," Bobby told him, trying to keep the sarcasm out of his voice.

Though that bit of knowledge didn't do Bobby any good, he supposed that it was nice to know that there was another guy who'd gone through what he was going through and who had managed to get back to normal. Of course, Psylocke had never returned to her original body.

Then as Northstar turned away, Bobby found himself facing Warren and Nightcrawler, who were near polar opposites of each other in appearance. Warren, the Archangel looked every bit his namesake, while Nightcrawler, Kurt Wagner looked fairly demonic. Both looked sympathetic, which almost seemed strange in that neither of them looked completely normal and Bobby hadn't imagined them getting too shook up at his no longer looking normal. Or at least normal for himself.

"How you holding up?" Warren asked cautiously.

"About as well as can be expected," Bobby sighed.

Warren nodded, then smirked just slightly as he added, "Well, I suppose you can use all the support you can get..." However, he was staring at Bobby's new breasts as he said it, making Bobby blush bright red.

"Please forgive him," Kurt said in his German accent, "This is a rather unique situation."

"Sorry," Warren apologized, though he didn't sound very sincere.

Bobby just groaned, realizing that this was payback for some of the jokes he'd played at Warren's expense back in their younger days. Of course, Warren had gotten his share of licks in too back then.

"You know," Warren started with a look of false innocence on his normally serious face, "I just realized...since you're in Emma's body, does that mean YOUR last name is now Frost?"

"It would certainly seem appropriate," Kurt added with a bit of a grin. "Maybe you can start calling yourself Jackie Frost since your normal code name is no longer quite...accurate."

Bobby glared at his friends, knowing that they were just yanking his chain a little, perhaps even trying to lighten his mood a bit. However, at the moment, he didn't want his mood to be lightened. "Bite me," he snorted as he started to turn away.

However, to Bobby's surprise, Warren apologized again, this time looking much more sincere. And then he bowed, giving a smile with all the grace and charm that had earned him the reputation of a playboy and ladies’ man, picking up a surprised Bobby's hand and kissing it. It was an action that he was much more likely to have expected from Kurt.

Bobby quickly yanked his hand away, then glared at his two friends before turning and storming away without a word. He grimaced, hating the way Warren had patronized him. Though Bobby knew that it hadn't been serious, really nothing more than friendly teasing, it still pissed him off.

As he made his way back to his room, Bobby scowled the whole way, hating the way people were looking at him. Or at least hating the way some of the teenage boys were looking at him. It was far too close to the way he'd looked at Emma occasionally, and though he didn't possess Emma's mind reading powers, he knew exactly what they were thinking.

But once Bobby was back in the safety of his room, he had no idea of what to do. He'd never by the time to just hang around doing nothing. He briefly considered taking a shower to clean up, but the thought made him feel even more self-conscious.

"Great," Bobby sighed as he sat down, poking at his breasts and shaking his head before turning his attention to the TV.

The distraction provided by the TV did little good to soothe Bobby, especially as he remembered it's nickname, 'the boob tube', which only reminded him even more of his own new assets.

"Hank got used to being blue," Bobby muttered, trying to convince himself that it could be worse.

Then Bobby's thoughts turned to more practical matters. He needed to know how long he was going to be stuck in Emma's body. And like it or not, there were things that would have to be taken care of if he was going to be in there for any length of time at all.

Letting out a long sigh, Bobby stood up, "Looks like I need to have a little talk with Emma..." He frowned, forming a small ice statue of Emma in the palm of his hand, then setting it down on the edge of his desk as he left the room.

While Bobby hurried down the hall, he noticed that people were still looking at him like they had earlier, yet there were other looks this time as well. Stranger looks. It wasn't until he overheard a few whispered words such as "Iceman" and "traded" that he realized why he was getting those looks. Word of his exchange had gotten out. Of course, that was no real surprise. It was hard keeping any kind of secrets around the school, not when there were several telepaths among the student body and even a mutant who could hear a whisper from a mile away.

Still, Bobby spat, "Damn," as he picked up his pace. It was even more uncomfortable having the kids look at him and actually know who he was inside.

Then Bobby noticed Chalk standing in the hallway, watching him with an intent expression. It was an expression that Bobby was not at all comfortable with. He hated guys looking at him like that. For a moment, he frowned, sure that he'd just seen Chalk a minute earlier in the other hall. But as he looked back, Chalk quickly went down another hall and out of sight.

"Weird kid," Bobby muttered, quickly forgetting about it as he continued on his way.

When Bobby got to Emma's room a minute later, he paused outside the door, suddenly not sure if he should knock or come back later. Then again, he reminded himself that he didn't even know that she was there at the moment. She could be anywhere else in the mansion. But he grimaced and knocked anyway.

To Bobby's relief, Emma was there, so he wouldn't have to go around the mansion looking for her. She took one look at him and scowled deeply, obviously not completely comfortable seeing her own face on someone else but trying to hide it.

"We need to talk," he told her as he went inside.

Emma stared at him and nodded, letting out a long sigh. "Yes, I suppose we do..." The emotions that she had been trying to hide were now much clearer in her voice.

However, rather than get straight to the point, Bobby remembered something else, "You were going to use Cerebra to look for that mutant..."

"No sign of his mutant signature," Emma spat out in frustration. "It's as though he isn't even on Earth anymore." She scowled deeply, a glint of steely determination shining in her eyes, "I'll look again later on..."

It was bad news, but not completely unexpected. Bobby grimaced, realizing that he'd started getting his hope up for nothing. But then again, things never seemed to go right or easy for the X Men. Somehow, that almost seemed a natural part of being a mutant.

"If we're going to be stuck in each other's bodies," Bobby started, having to pause as his voice choked, "We're going to need more wear than these..." He gestured down at Emma's skimpy costume which he was still wearing, "I came to see if I could borrow some clothes..."

Emma scowled but nodded her agreement. "That would be...practical."
A minute later, Emma was going through her closet, pulling out clothes and frowning as she stared at them. "No," she thought aloud, "I can't give you this. It's Versace..."

"Don't you just have some jeans and T Shirts?" Bobby asked, though he couldn't remember ever seeing Emma in anything so casual. She had expensive tastes, though fortunately the money to afford them as well.

For a moment, Emma just glared at Bobby, making him want to cringe slightly. It was strange getting that impression from his own body. Then Emma stated, "On the other hand, I can't very well have you dressing like a slob in MY body and ruining MY reputation."

A short while later, the clothes that Emma was willing to lend Bobby were packed up for him, and he looked at them, feeling a bit uncomfortable. He would have liked to have complained a bit, but knew that he couldn't very well do that after having asked to borrow some of her clothes in the first place. He reminded himself that he should have known that she wouldn't have something like jeans and T shirts.

"If you need any instructions on how to put anything on," Emma stated as she held up a bra and gave Bobby a wry grin, "I can provide them."

"I can figure it out," he grumbled.

"This should be enough for several days," Emma continued. "Hopefully we should be back to normal before any more clothes are necessary."

Bobby nodded agreement, hoping the same thing with all his heart. Preferably, he would like to get back to normal before he had to try even those clothes on. After this, Bobby just sat there and talked with Emma for a little while, discussing their situation and what they might do if they did not return to normal soon. It was a prospect that neither wanted to consider.

Then thinking about the looks that the guys had given him in the hall, and that even some of his friends had given him, Bobby asked Emma, "How do you deal with the way guys stare at you...?" He was embarrassed at asking, at admitting aloud that he'd actually noticed the attention. That was almost as embarrassing as having to ask Emma advice of that nature. "I mean, how can I stop it...?"

Emma gave a faint laugh which made Bobby scowl to hide his growing embarrassment better. Then Emma smirked, obviously amused by the situation. Then seeing the look on Bobby's face, she nodded faintly and grew more serious.

"There are several options available," she told Bobby thoughtfully, apparently deciding to take this seriously. "A woman can enjoy the attention and even encourage it. She can get angry...which does not really help. She can try hiding her attractiveness...which I would not recommend." She glared at Bobby with that, as if giving him silent warning not to even dare ruining her reputation. "And she can ignore it...or at least present the impression that she is."

"Thanks," Bobby sighed, not sure that her advice would do any good.

His first thought was to make himself less attractive, which would not be too easy in Emma's body. However, the thought of what she might do to him if he did do something like that was enough to make him reconsider. Or at least give it a bit more thought.

Finally, Bobby picked up the clothes and started to leave. He paused long enough to tell Emma, "I'll stop by later with some of my clothes..."

Emma gave a disdainful look at that, obviously not looking forward to wearing anything of Bobby's, no more than he was looking forward to wearing hers. However, she did grudgingly respond, "Thank you. I would appreciate that."

Bobby shrugged, then left, going a little slower this time as he returned to his room. He remembered what Emma had told him and made his best effort to pretend that there was no one else in the halls with him. That he was walking alone. He didn't even glance at any of the students who crossed his past.

As Bobby clutched the borrowed clothes tighter in his hands, he glanced down at his protruding chest and grimaced. His scowl deepened and he sped up his pace, nearly bumping into one teenage mutant but not pausing to apologize.

Then from behind him, Bobby faintly heard, "White Queen my ass... They should call her the ICE Queen..."

When Bobby arrived at his own room a minute later, he paused, noticing something white down at the other end of the hall. It was Chalk, who just seemed to be standing around. However, the white mutant gave Bobby a strange look before hurrying away.

"Must have heard what happened with me and Emma," Bobby muttered to himself, thinking that Chalk had to be heartbroken. He knew that he certainly would have been if a woman he'd liked suddenly got turned into a guy.

Once Bobby was safely inside of his room, he let out a long sigh, carefully setting the clothes that Emma had lent him onto his bed. He stared at them for a moment, thinking that they were certainly higher end clothes than he usually wore. And he knew that before long he'd be wearing them himself.

With a sigh, Bobby stripped out of Emma's costume, standing there naked, purposely avoiding the mirror. He already felt a little guilty about the way he'd stared at himself earlier, even though he wanted to take a look at Emma's naked body again. However, it lacked quite the same thrill since he was the one inside of it.

After a minute, Bobby went to the bathroom that he shared with the room next door and got his bath ready. He might not be thrilled with his new body, but it still needed to get cleaned.

"I'm usually not one for warm baths," Bobby sighed as he settled into the water, then smirked as he made a small 'glacier' form on the surface of the water. Then after a brief though, he created another floating chunk of ice in the shape of the Titanic. "Better."

The bath felt a bit better than normal, which Bobby put down to his now softer more sensitive skin. Personally, he would have preferred getting back to being 'thick skinned'.

Bobby was still a bit curious about his new parts, fighting back the urge to check them out a bit more closely. And perhaps even play with them a bit. It was a strong curiosity, but on the other side, there was an equally strong fear that Emma would suddenly burst into his head telepathically the moment he attempted something like that and demand to know what he was doing.

Still, the warm bath and his soft washing did feel pretty good. Perhaps even a little too good as his nipples were starting to respond to the wash cloth. However, he didn't give in to those urges or that curiosity, remembering Emma.

Eventually Bobby finished with his bath and dressed up in the clothes that Emma had lent him. He had a few small problems with the Bra, cursing to himself as he put it on, but he managed. And once he was finished, he stood in front of the mirror, staring at his unfamiliar reflection.

Finally, Bobby whispered, "This isn't TOO bad and I guess it could be a lot worse. I suppose I can handle being stuck like this..." Then he grimaced, "For a little while."

The Ice Queen Cometh
part 3 of 6
By Morpheus

The office of Professor Charles Xavier, founder of the X Men and the headmaster of Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters was decorated in a classical and tasteful style. There was a wide wooden desk, with dark wood inlays in the walls. Bookshelves, filled with great works of literature and reference books of all sorts filled nearly every corner.

Bobby sat in a chair on one side of the desk, his legs crossed in a feminine manner at the instruction, nearly the demand of Emma frost just a minute earlier. His current clothes consisted of a white and blue spandex uniform, a new costume which had just been made for him.

Sitting beside Bobby in an identical chair was Emma Frost, dressed in an impeccable white suit which seemed to serve as both her new, and temporary uniform, as well as a replacement for the clothes which Bobby had proved. Though unspoken, the suit served as a clear statement that even in Bobby's body, she was indeed Emma Frost, the former White Queen.

Then as Bobby glanced over at Emma, feeling a little impatient and about to ask what was taking so long, someone stepped into the office. He was a tall man with a dark suit and without a single hair on his head. It still surprised Bobby to see the professor walking, thanks to another mutant's healing powers, when he had been used to seeing him in a wheelchair for so many years.

"I apologize for being late," Professor Xavier greeted both Bobby and Emma, "I had a minor discipline problem with one of the students to attend to."

"I understand," Emma responded with a slight nod, having once been headmistress of her own school of mutants and having a great deal of personal experience in those matters herself.

With that, the professor sat down behind his desk and carefully looked at both Bobby and Emma. His expression was guarded, as though he did not want to give anything away just yet.

"How are you two holding up?" he asked after a few seconds.

Bobby just frowned and gave a shrug, while Emma wryly responded, "I'll survive."

The professor nodded, then started, "I know that you two exchanged bodies three days ago, but I'm afraid that we are no closer to finding a way to reverse it." Then he let out a sigh, "Unlike some of you, I do hold to the belief that this was not caused intentionally, but was the result of a young mutant who was unable to control his...or her powers. Unfortunately though, Cerebra has not been able to find a trace of this mutant." He paused again, rubbing at his temples, "Hank found traces of extra-dimensional energy at the site and believes that this unknown mutant teleported away."

"Just great," Bobby grumbled, "He could be anywhere on Earth..."

But the professor corrected, "Or not on Earth at all. Cerebra's inability to detect that mutant's signature seems to be evidence of this."

Emma scowled deeply at that, "Then we will have to keep looking until he or she returns to Earth. I certainly have no intention of remaining like this."

"I second that," Bobby added with a sigh.

"There does appear to be another side effect to your exchange as well," the professor mused as he stared at Bobby, apparently trying to change the subject a little. "It seems that dichotomy between your body and mind has made it very difficult to read your thoughts."

"And Emma?" Bobby asked, thinking that he rather liked the idea of a telepath not being able to read him. It was always disconcerting to have someone know exactly what your most private thoughts were, even if it was someone you trusted.

"She's a telepath," the professor reminded him with a slight smile, "Her psychic shields were strong enough before this." Emma had a faintly smug expression at that, which annoyed Bobby.

After they had finished talking a few minutes later and were leaving, the professor stopped Bobby, letting Emma continue on her way.

"How are you holding up?" The professor asked gently, "Honestly."

Bobby hesitated for a moment, wondering how he could tell the professor just how embarrassed he felt or how uncomfortable. It almost seemed strange for the professor not to just pick those thoughts up telepathically, saving Bobby the trouble of putting them into words. In the end, Bobby shrugged again, trying to act cool, "Like Emma said...I'll survive."

"I am sure that you will," Xavier smiled gently. Then he abruptly announced, "I heard that some of the others have started calling you Bobbie Frost..."

Bobby snorted at that, "Kurt started it as some kind of joke." He was not particularly thrilled with the teasing but had been trying his best to ignore it, knowing very well that any reaction could spark an escalation.

"I suppose that it does make sense to adopt a more appropriate name if you are going to remain like this for very long," the professor mused aloud.

However, Bobby had the distinct impression that it wasn't a spur of the moment thought. It had the feel of a rehearsed comment, one which was meant to help him accept the idea that he might indeed remain in Emma's body for some time to come. Bobby frowned, suspecting that this was the professor’s subtle way of telling him that he should start accepting that possibility.

"And even you have to admit," the professor continued, "Frost does seem more appropriate, both in power and body."

"And what should we call Emma?" Bobby asked sarcastically, "Emmet? Somehow I don't think that she'll go for that..."

Xavier let out a sigh, "And somehow I think that you are correct."

With a snort and a semi-sarcastic "Thanks for the pep talk," Bobby left the professors office, silently relieved that the professor couldn't really read his mind at the moment. Right then, he didn't think that the professor would have liked what he was thinking.

Bobby hurried away from the professor's office, wanting to find someplace where he could be alone with his thoughts, though discounting his room as that place. He had spent more than enough time staring at its walls during the last few days and wanted something a little more scenic and relaxing.

Eventually, Bobby found a quiet corner, an unoccupied study area with a window that provided a clear view outside. However, it was not the view which interested Bobby, but the solitude.

After several minutes, Bobby was beginning to feel a little more relaxed. He stood at the window, silently watching the students moving about below. A faint smile formed on his lips as he saw a green skinned girl blowing what looked like soap bubbles out of her mouth.

Suddenly, Bobby heard something and turned around, startled to see a tall white skinned figure standing there. Chalk. The young mutant seemed to turn up almost every time Bobby turned around. If he didn't know better, he almost would have sworn that Chalk was actually stalking him.

"Hi Ms. Frost," Chalk greeted him, seeming to ignore or be unaware of the fact that Bobby was only in Emma's body and not really her, though he had to have heard about the swap. Probably everyone in the school had by then.

Bobby scowled, turning back to the window. "Go away. I want to be alone."

However, Chalk made no move to leave. Bobby turned back towards him, beginning to get quite annoyed. The pale mutant just stood there, an intense look of lust in his eyes as he stared at Bobby. It was a look that sent chills down Bobby's spine.

"Why are you teasing me like this?" Chalk asked, almost demanded. The tone caught Bobby off guard. "I know that you want me..."

"What?" Bobby gasped in shock, realizing that the intense look in Chalk's eyes was more than just lust and admiration. There was madness in there as well. He'd seen it in enough eyes to recognize it.

"You want me," Chalk repeated, "You've used your mind powers to make me want you...making me think of you all the time..."

That was obviously not true as Bobby had no such powers and he had no doubt that Emma would NEVER do such a thing either. Even when she had been a 'villain', she never would have resorted to such a thing.

Bobby stared at Chalk, "You're crazy..."

Without warning, Chalk moved forward, much faster than Bobby would have thought him capable. His hand grasped Bobby's shoulder, holding him tight. Bobby grimaced and tried to pull away, but it was completely useless. Chalk's mutant powers made him five times stronger than a normal person of his size. And even without his mutant power, he would have been a lot stronger than Bobby in his current body. Or even his original.

"Why do you make me need you?" Chalk demanded, holding Bobby even tighter, "Then pretending you don't want me?"

Bobby grimaced, then tried to lash out with his powers, intending to freeze Chalk in ice. However, nothing happened. It was only then that he suddenly remembered Chalk's other mutant powers...the ability to temporarily neutralize other mutant's powers, just by touching them.

A sudden burst of fear stabbed through Bobby's heart as he realized just how helpless he was at the moment. He was faced with an insane teenager who was much stronger than him, and he didn't even have his own powers to fall back on. He struggled harder, to just as little effect as his earlier attempt.

"You'd better let me go NOW," Bobby started to threaten. But before he could finish, Chalk put a hand over his mouth.

"Of course, how could you not like me," Chalk went on, "I'm even your favorite color..."

Once again Bobby increased his attempts to get away, everything he knew about hand to hand combat and unarmed self-defense. However, nothing seemed to work. He couldn't even get any balance. And when he saw his chance and kneed Chalk in groin, the white mutant just grimaced, pulling his grip even tighter.

"Why do you pretend not to want it?" Chalk asked, looking confused. Then he suddenly brightened up, "Oh...you like playing hard to get. Okay Ms. Frost...I'll give you what you want..."

Suddenly Chalk tossed Bobby to the ground, beginning to undo his belt. Bobby's eyes widened in horror as it began to dawn on him exactly what Chalk had planned.

"HELP!" Bobby cried out, hoping that someone would hear him. But at the same time, he remembered that he'd chosen that corner for privacy because it was away from the main corridors or where any of the classes were being held.

Bobby tried to get up and get away, but Chalk quickly grabbed him and slammed him back to the ground, then started tearing at Bobby's clothes, eager to remove them. Again Bobby screamed for help, for Chalk to leave him alone....for anything.

"OH GOD NO!" Bobby screamed out in horror as Chalk straddled over him.

Bobby had never been so terrified or helpless in his life, not even while facing down Magneto and the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. He rather would have been facing down an army of evil mutants than spend a single moment with that lone lunatic teenager.

Then to Bobby's stunned disbelief, a loud voice suddenly boomed out, "WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE?"

In instant later, Chalk was suddenly pulled off of Bobby...then sent flying through the air and into a wall on the far side of the room. A large hole was smashed into the wall, while Chalk slid down and fell to the floor with a loud groan. It was only then that Bobby looked up at his savior, gasping in disbelief as he saw the large frame of the Juggernaut, the last person that he ever would have expected to save him.

"My God...," Bobby gasped out, his whole body shaking horribly as he started getting to his feet. He'd never been so terrified, so helpless... After all those years training, fighting armies, villains and mutants with the power to blow up whole cities...he was nearly RAPED by some crazy teenager, and he hadn't been able to do ANYTHING. He'd had to be saved by someone who used to be one of his worst enemies. "My God..."

"You all right?" Juggernaut...Cain asked in concern.

Bobby took a deep breath, looking at Chalk who was still lying on the floor, then up at Cain. "Thank you," he whispered, cringing in humiliation.

"I heard someone yelling," Cain started.

Suddenly Bobby turned and glared at him, snapping, "NO ONE HEARS ABOUT THIS!"

Cain stepped back slightly, a look of surprise on his face. "But," he gestured to Chalk.

"No one," Bobby growled, his heart racing with the terror...and the realization of just how close he'd come. Just another ten seconds... And if Cain hadn't come... "Not one word..."

"Um...yeah...OK," Cain responded uncertainly, but nodding his agreement anyway. It was Bobby's business, so it was his call.

For a moment, Bobby just stared at Cain, desperate that no one find out about this...about his humiliation. He'd never been more humiliated...more ashamed and he couldn't bear the thought of anyone else knowing.

Then Bobby suddenly turned and nearly ran down the hall, tears pouring down his cheeks, feeling as though he was going to split apart from all the crushing emotions within him. He was bursting from rage...rage, shame, humiliation and helplessness. All of it threatened to completely overwhelm him and bury him under the raw weight of it all.

When Bobby reached his own quarters, he slammed the door behind him, shaking like a leaf. Then he howled out, trying to give release to the burning cauldron of emotions within him. However, that did nothing to ease the horrible torment that he felt.

"Nothing," Bobby whispered to himself, "I couldn't do anything at all..."

With that, Bobby turned to the mirror on the wall, freezing as he saw Emma's face. Feelings of hatred, disgust and shame filled him at the sight, knowing that this had only happened to him because of that face. Because he had the body of a woman. And as much as he disliked that fact before, he hated it even a hundred times worse now.

"DAMN!" Bobby spat out bitterly, punching the mirror as hard as he could.

The instant that Bobby's fist connected, it was instinctively transformed into ice, shattering the mirror but leaving him unharmed. After glaring at the shattered mirror which had a thin coat of frost coating it, Bobby let out another howl of anguish, this time releasing not only his rage but unconsciously wave after wave of bitter cold.

Within moments, every surface of the room was covered with a thick coat of ice, while large icicles, up to several feet in length hung from the ceiling. However, Bobby was barely aware of this, his power lashing out more of instinct than any form of conscious will.

Finally, Bobby collapsed to the ground, a network of protective ice spikes forming around him in a near cocoon. And in its center, Bobby curled up and cried, the hot tears that ran down his cheek being nearly the only warmth left in the room.

--------------------

It had been several days since the 'incident' with Chalk had occurred, and Bobby had scarcely left the safety and security of his quarters in that time. He had avoided leaving his sanctuary as much as possible, though at the moment he had little choice.

Just the day before, Bobby had felt the pains start. It was like a wrenching in his very guts, and though he thought it might be a side effect of the exchange, had had hesitated about going to sick bay for it. He had held off, until a short while earlier when he had noticed himself bleeding from his new equipment.

It was then that Bobby had realized what was happening. It was the curse that every woman suffered...a period. He grimaced, cursing nonstop as he was suddenly faced with his body betraying him even more, with yet another humiliation added onto what he'd already suffered.

"DAMN IT!" Bobby spat, knowing that as much as he hated the idea, there was only one thing he could do. He was going to have to have a little talk with Emma.

Bobby walked down the hallway with a deep scowl, aware of every pair of eyes that settled on him and even those that weren't. He could feel their stares, imagining that they looked into him and saw his shame and humiliation. And with each person that he passed, his scowl grew deeper, his glare being enough to cause some in his path to step to avert their eyes and even step to the side.

There was no doubt, Bobby knew, that when they looked at him they saw a beautiful woman. Even when they knew who he really was inside, it was Emma that they saw, her gorgeous face and sexy body. That was what they saw, and it sickened him. That kind of attention reminded him of what had happened, making him even more bitter about what he had become.

Then one boy came up to Bobby, "Um...excuse me," he started.

However, Bobby snapped, "Leave me alone," not even bothering to look at the boy as he continued on his way, not wanting to be bothered.

"What a bitch," the boy gasped from behind Bobby.

Bobby heard, though offered no response to the comment, at least not any conscious one. However, the temperature dropped several degrees and small ice crystals formed on the hallway walls as he walked past.

"Talk about getting the cold shoulder," another mutant gasped as Bobby left the scene.

Just a minute later, Bobby arrived outside the door to Emma's quarters, hesitating only a moment before knocking. However, after another minute, he was disgusted to still be standing there, unanswered.

"Damn," Bobby grimaced, realizing that of course Emma wouldn't be in her quarters. She wasn't the time to stay cooped up no matter what. That left only one place to find her.

It didn't take long for Bobby to find the classroom that he was looking for and step inside. There were a dozen students sitting at their seats, some looking completely ordinary, as though they could be students in any school anywhere. Others however were quite strange looking, even inhuman in appearance.

However, it wasn't the students which Bobby was really looking at. It was Emma, standing at the front of the class and teaching, wearing a stylish white suit that he silently admitted didn't look bad on his body, though he certainly would have chosen a different color.

"Can we talk?" Bobby grimly asked Emma.

Emma paused for a moment to give Bobby a look, then turned to her class. "Remain seated children. I will be back in just a minute..." And with that, she stepped out into the hall with Bobby.

"I've got a problem," Bobby started, squirming uncomfortably at the very thought of the subject.

"You're experiencing my monthly visitor?" Emma commented, more a statement than a question. At Bobby's surprised look, she continued, "I was expecting you..."

"Expecting?" Bobby blurted out in surprise, and a little anger.

"Of course," Emma explained calmly, "I am very well aware of when it was due and thought that you might have questions."

"You knew this was coming and you didn't warn me?" Bobby demanded in outrage, beginning to get pissed.

Emma just rolled her eyes, "You're making too much of it." Then she added, "Once I am finished with my class, I will meet you in my quarters and give you the talk." The last bit was given in a slightly sarcastic tone.

Bobby grimaced, glaring at Emma and suspecting that she was enjoying this. He thought that it would be just like that bitch. However, he nodded his reluctant agreement, knowing that it would still be a little less embarrassing to go to her about this problem than any of the other's. Bobby would rather have died than ask Jean advice on female problems, or even let any of the guys find out.

Eventually, Emma returned to her quarters where Bobby had been waiting impatiently, and he suspected that she had intentionally taken her time getting there just to piss him off. And with the way he was feeling, that did not improve his mood in the slightest.

"I feel foolish having to explain this to someone who looks not only like an adult woman but like myself," Emma told Bobby, scowling a little as she pulled out several 'feminine hygiene products' and set them down in front of Bobby.

"I know the birds and the bees," Bobby grumbled.

"Perhaps," Emma responded blandly, "But I am sure that you lack experience in this particular area..."

Bobby grumbled but didn't argue since he knew that Emma was right. So as humiliating as it was, he forced himself to sit there as she explained the practicalities of his new biology, his period and how to take care of them.

By the time Emma was finished, Bobby knew far more about periods than he had ever wanted to. Emma had patiently explained, and Bobby was sure with some amusement, everything from easing the symptoms to applying tampons. And to his disgust, he was now wearing one, though he supposed that this further humiliation would be better than letting blood dribble down his legs.

"And you have to do this EVERY month?" Bobby stared at Emma in disbelief. "No way..."

Emma shrugged, a casual gesture that was normally unlike her. "You get used to it."

"NEVER," Bobby responded emphatically, desperately hoping that they found a way to change back so that he'd never have to do it again.

However, Emma just looked at Bobby with an expression that seemed to say, "We'll see..."

After a few seconds, Bobby sighed, then quietly told Emma, "Thanks." He was both uncomfortable and embarrassed with having talked to her about something so personal, though at the same time, he was a little relieved that at least there was someone he could talk to. "I appreciate this..."

For a brief moment, Emma looked uncomfortable with Bobby's expression of gratitude, then she nodded. "It was no problem."

Bobby nodded back just slightly before leaving, a small bag in his hand containing the feminine hygiene items which Emma had suggested he take. He was thankful for her assistance, yet horrified at the thought that anyone should happen to see what was inside of the bag. With that, he made a mental note to stay very clear of that boy Refrax who had the X ray vision until he got back to his room.

"Disgusting," Bobby muttered to himself bitterly, wincing at the cramping in his guts, "How can women stand this every month?" Every time he thought that he'd found out just how horrible it could be being a woman, he discovered something else.

With that, Bobby hurried back down the hallway to his quarters, his scowl deepening with nearly every step and the thoughts of his latest pain and humiliation. Students quickly parted out of his way, which suited Bobby's foul mood quite well. Such was his determination to return to his quarters quickly, he was not even aware that the temperature dropped several degrees as he passed by, causing a number of students to shiver at the sudden chill.

The Ice Queen Cometh
part 4 of 6
By Morpheus

Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters was located in a large mansion that provided a great deal of open space around it, both in the form of woods as well as several grassy courtyards. At the moment, one courtyard had a dozen young mutants gathered around for their daily class on flying, paying varying degrees of attention to their instructor, Northstar.

Bobby Drake silently watched the class from inside, looking down at them through the window as he had been doing for the last several minutes. It always fascinated him to watch young mutants learning to control their powers because he never knew exactly what could happen. He even smiled as he remembered one boy suddenly discovering his ability to create small holographic illusions when he'd gotten distracted in class and accidentally projected his thoughts...the girl sitting in front of him naked...for everyone to see. It had to be an embarrassing way to discover a new power....both for the boy and the girl who had been the subject of his fantasies.

"Lucky bastards," Bobby sighed as he watched one green skinned boy floating into the air. Though Bobby loved his powers, he had always secretly envied those who had the power to fly.

With that, Bobby blew onto the window, though instead of fogging up, a thin layer of ice crystals formed. He used his finger to trace three circles in the ice, one on top of the other so that they resembled a snow man.

"The Ice Man," Bobby sighed, having always been proud of his codename before, though now it almost seemed a cruel joke. As much as he wished it, he didn't look anything like an Ice MAN at the moment.

Then Bobby frowned, turning and glancing back at the clock on the wall He had to do a double take when he saw what time it was, then cursed under his breath as he realized that he was late. He'd forgotten all about his 'appointment' with Scott.

"Damn," Bobby muttered as he turned away from the window and hurried on his way.

Bobby hadn't gone very far down the hall when he caught a glimpse of something white up ahead of him, moving just around the corner. Suddenly, he froze, a jagged edge of fear stabbing straight through him.

"No...," Bobby squeaked out, leaning against the hallway wall, his whole body shaking uncontrollably just as his heart was racing wildly. He closed his eyes tightly, hoping that it would go away. "Why...?"

Bobby just didn't understand it... This wasn't like him. Not in the least. He'd been facing bad guys for years. Everything from Magneto to giant mutant killing robots. But nothing had every scared him as bad as this one teenage punk did.

Never in his life had Bobby felt so weak and vulnerable. Except for when Chalk had attacked him. He was terrified...and the fact that Chalk wasn't even there at the moment only made him feel more humiliated and ashamed of himself.

After a minute, Bobby regained control over himself, seeing that there was no sign of Chalk in the hall with him. There was no sign of anyone else in the hall. Most of the students were in classes, which made him let out a faint sigh of relief as no one had seen his latest humiliation...freaking out just for seeing a spot of white and letting his imagination getting carried away. For all he knew, it could have been Emma walking past.

"Damn it," Bobby growled bitterly, feeling angry at himself for acting that way, for feeling that way...and for not being able to help himself.

Bobby had already been in a bad enough mood after having spent the last several days bleeding and cramped up, and this little 'incident' hadn't improved upon his mood in the least. With a deep scowl and a bitter glare down the hall where he had thought he'd seen Chalk, Bobby started walking again.

Several minutes later, Bobby reached the elevator and descended to the sublevel of the school, an area which was mostly banned from the students and reserved almost solely for the X Men's use. At least there, Bobby thought bitterly, there weren't likely to be any students to ogle him nor any chance that he'd run into Chalk.

He stopped at the door to the danger room, the primary training center for the X Men. It was an extremely large room, designed using some of the most advanced robotics, holographics and weapons technologies on Earth, and even some from other planets to provide the most extreme, challenging and diverse environments for training possible.

"Now why did Cyclops want me to meet him here?" Bobby growled, thinking about how Scott had told him to be at the danger room at that time.

Then Bobby stepped into the danger room and paused, seeing that it was all set up. It was a huge metal room, empty of any of the holographics which provided the appearance of being elsewhere. However, the room was not completely empty. It was obviously already set up for something, with giant metal arms, tentacles and a vast array of weapons being scattered about everywhere. There were even a large number of robots that were currently motionless, both human sized ground based ones as well as the smaller but nastier flying ones that could shoot beams out of them.

At the same time that Bobby took in the danger room, he also saw that Cyclops was already there in full uniform, as were Juggernaut and the Beast. Bobby's eyes narrowed and he glared at Cyclops as he went to join them.

"What's going on?" Bobby demanded.

"You're late," Cyclops commented.

"Fuck you Scott," Bobby responded coldly, "Now what's up?" If this was supposed to be a regular training session, where was the rest of the team?

Cyclops hesitated a moment, then told Bobby, "I know that you've been under a lot of stress since this thing with Emma..." He scowled, nodding at Bobby, "and I honestly can't say that I understand what you're going through. I'm sorry Bobby, but I'm worried about how this whole situation will affect your performance..."

"My performance?" Bobby blinked in surprise.

"I want to run you through some training routines," Cyclops frowned, "It's better to make sure that you can still handle yourself and your powers here rather than wait until we're in the field..."

"You don't think I can handle myself?" Bobby gasped, staring at Cyclops in disbelief, "Just because I turned into a fucking woman?"

Bobby glared at Cyclops, beginning to get angry. The accusation hurt, worst because it was almost exactly the same thing that Bobby had been afraid of himself. That he just couldn't cut it anymore in his new body. However, it was one thing to doubt himself, but when his closest friend's did it...

"DAMN IT!" Bobby screamed out in a sudden rage, glaring at Cyclops, and then at the Beast who hadn't said a word in his defense. It wasn't just accusation now, but the feeling as though he'd just been betrayed.

With that, Bobby snapped around and unleashed both his powers and his rage at the other end of the danger room which had everything set up. Suddenly, a blast wave of cold hit, causing several of the robots and devices to flash freeze and shatter. But at that very same time, thick sheets of ice formed on every single surface. In just a moment after Bobby had unleashed his powers, every inch of the wall, floor and ceiling was buried in ice, as were every robot and machine in the area, including the floating robots. Massive pillars of ice spread from floor to ceiling, leaving most of the danger room frozen in solid ice.

Then Bobby gave a steady glare at Cyclops and coldly demanded, "Do you still think I can't handle my powers?"

Before Cyclops could respond, Bobby turned around and quickly walked out of the danger room, still angry but feeling much better with that display. At the moment though, he just wanted to get away from there and his so called friends.

Inside of the danger room, the Juggernaut gasped in surprise, "Holy shit. I didn't know he could do that..."

The Beast nodded as he stepped up beside his much large companion, looking at the ice filled danger room again before responding, "Bobby is much more powerful than most people realize." The Beast hesitated just a moment before adding, "Including himself."

"I once saw him turn all of Central Park into a glacier," Cyclops commented to the Juggernaut without looking at him. "Hank is right. Bobby is much more powerful than people think. He usually just doesn't use it all."

"I suspect that he is afraid of his powers," the Beast added thoughtfully. "Perhaps he fears becoming too powerful and losing himself to them... Becoming like Magneto or some of the other's that we've dealt with..."

"Well, all I can say," the Juggernaut muttered as he stared at the ice sheets, "is I'm impressed...."

Cyclops glanced at the ice, then at the danger room door, scowling thoughtfully. "What I am more concerned about is his attitude..."

"True," the Beast responded with a frown, "And I am beginning to understand why some of the students have started to refer to him as the Ice Queen."

--------------------

Bobby Drake closed his eyes, trying to enjoy the nice warm bath and let the worries of the world drain away from him. He scarcely noticed as the warmth faced away, replaced by a thin layer of ice that formed over the water's surface where it touched the sides of the tub.

While Bobby sat there with his eyes closed, he could almost forget about being trapped in the wrong body, of not finding any trace of the mutant who had caused the swap in the first place. He could almost forget about that nasty period, of bleeding from his most intimate of places for days on end. And for awhile, he could even put out of his mind the way his own friends had revealed that they didn't trust him anymore by springing that surprise 'training' session on him the day before.

Eventually, Bobby climbed out of the bath tub, feeling a bit more relaxed than when he had gone in. He paused in front of the bathroom mirror to stare at the gorgeous reflection of Emma Frost which stared back at him. It was still a little strange seeing her face rather than his own, yet it was no longer as shocking as it had been for the first several days.

"Damn," he muttered, "I always wanted to get my hands on Emma's naked body, but this is ridiculous..."

Letting out a deep sigh, Bobby turned away from the mirror and began drying off, using both towel and blow dryer since he had discovered how much more effective that was on his long hair. He left the bathroom and returned to his bedroom, pausing once he was in there, realizing that there was something wrong, though it took him a moment to notice what it was.

"What?" Bobby blinked, staring at the chair that he KNEW he had slung his costume over just before going into the bath. But his costume wasn't there. It was gone...

It only took a moment more before Bobby noticed something on his bed. Or more accurately, some things. They were clothes...if they could be called that, spread out over his bed. There were a pair of white, thigh length stiletto heeled boots. A pair of white opera gloves. What looked somewhat like the lower part of a bikini...in white. An uncomfortable looking corset and a long cape with fur trim on the shoulders...all of course in white. And with a single look at the displayed clothes, Bobby recognized them. This was the uniform of the White Queen, the costume that Emma Frost had worn back when she had been an enemy of the X Men.

"What the hell?" Bobby blinked in surprise.

Bobby stared at the clothes for a moment, wondering who had left them and why. For a second, he considered that it might be Emma and wondered if this was her idea of a joke. However, Emma wasn't exactly known for her sense of humor.

Deciding to leave the question for the moment, Bobby went to his closet to get some REAL clothes to wear. However, as soon as Bobby opened it, he was startled to see that it was empty. There wasn't a single piece of clothing left. Then with a deep scowl and a sinking feeling, Bobby looked in his dresser, finding that it too had been emptied. A search of his room revealed that there wasn't a single stitch of clothing left to him...except of course for that which was spread out upon his bed.

"Damn," Bobby growled, beginning to get angry. He clenched his fist, the temperature of his room instantly dropping by several degrees.

It was pretty obvious that someone wanted Bobby to put that costume on. Why else go through the trouble of breaking into his locked room while he was in the bath, placing the costume and then removing any other clothes that he could possibly wear? The question was, who was trying to mess with his mind that way, and why?

With a snort, Bobby muttered, "I don't think so..."

Unfortunately though, that still left the problem of Bobby not having any clothes to wear. He certainly couldn't run down the halls naked, so tried coming up with several alternatives. There was a brief thought that he could wrap himself up in his bed sheets or use one like a toga, though that would be quite embarrassing should anyone see him like that...especially any of the students.

Just then, someone knocked on Bobby's door. He looked down at his naked body and blushed, realizing that he certainly couldn't answer it like that. "Just a minute," he called out, quickly looking for something...anything that he could cover himself with. And since it was the first thing that he saw, Bobby grabbed the white cape from the bed and wrapped his body in it. It was better than nothing. Then Bobby carefully opened the door, peaking his head around the corner so as to give as little a glimpse of himself as possible. "Yeah...," he started, then blinked as he saw who it was, "Emma..."

Emma stood in Bobby's body on the other side of the doorway, staring at him for a moment, a curious expression on her face. "Can I come in...?"

"Um...yeah," Bobby opened the door a little further to let her inside.

As Emma came in, she looked a little oddly at Bobby, though didn't say a thing. He looked back at her, fully aware of his state of undress. The fact that it was really her body didn't do much to alleviate his embarrassment, and actually enhanced it a degree.

"You didn't happen to leave me a present," Bobby asked her, quickly trying to cover up his embarrassment.

"No," Emma responded slowly, "I came to talk about our...situation. Why?"

Bobby frowned, gesturing to the bed. Emma took a single look at it and suddenly scowled deeply. "Those came from my room... How did you get them?"

"I found them sitting there when I got out of the bath," Bobby told her, not at all surprised that she kept one of her old costumes around. "And all of my clothes were gone..."

Emma looked at the costume thoughtfully for a moment, then announced, "I thought that I smelled sulfur in my quarters earlier..."

Both of them looked at each other, knowing exactly what that meant. "Kurt," they both stated simultaneously. Whenever Nightcrawler teleported, he did so in a burst of smoke and sulfur. And that obviously explained how the costume got into Bobby's room through the locked door.

"It appears that Kurt is amused by our situation," Emma commented wryly, obviously not amused herself. However, Bobby suspected that she was annoyed not because he was the target of some joke, but because her privacy had been invaded in order to play it. "And I doubt that he is alone..."

Bobby nodded his agreement, having reached the same conclusion himself. He knew that there was no way that Scott would be involved in something like that. In fact, Bobby often wondered if Scott had a sense of humor at all. Most likely, Warren and Hank would be the other ones involved. Though none of those three were usually big on practical jokes, Bobby knew them all well enough to suspect that they might find it quite amusing to play such a prank on the one who used to have the reputation of class clown.

When Bobby shared his thoughts on the other suspects with Emma, she agreed. "I don't know them as well as you but they do sound like the most likely ones..."

"Trust me," Bobby told her grimly, beginning to get angry again, "It's them. I'm sure of it."

"Of course you know," Emma stated calmly, though there was a glint of anger in her eyes as well, "that we will have to make them pay for this..."

"Of course," Bobby agreed, knowing the rules of practical jokes very well. A practical joke of that magnitude absolutely required retaliation in some fashion.

However, with a look at Emma, Bobby knew that it wasn't the practical joke that she wanted to respond to, but the insult that it represented. And he had a feeling that she wouldn't be satisfied by some mere joke. Truthfully, he suspected that he wouldn't either.

After a few seconds of silence, Bobby asked in embarrassment, "Do you think that you could get me something to work first...?"

Emma stared at Bobby for a moment before responding, "No." At Bobby's surprised look, she smiled, though it was not a pleasant smile. "The best way to prevent them from attempting something like this again is to show them that this didn't bother you...and then rub their faces in it..."

Bobby frowned, "I'm not sure I understand..."

Emma paused, then explained as if talking to a child. Once she was done, Bobby stared at her with his mouth open, half sure that she was joking...except that Emma never joked. She wanted him to actually wear her old White Queen costume.

Taking another look at Emma's old costume on the bed, Bobby exclaimed, "No way am I putting that on..."

"I'm sure that this is exactly the reaction they expected," Emma calmly pointed out.

Quickly deciding to try a different angle, Bobby pointed out, "Even if I did put that on, there's no way that I'd even be able to walk in those boots. I'd fall flat on my face..."

"I might have a solution to that," Emma responded after a moment, not sounding quite as confident as she had a moment earlier. At Bobby's curious look, she continued, "I can telepathically implant my skill at walking in those into your mind."

Bobby stared at her in surprise, knowing that such a thing was theoretically possible since the professor had telepathically implanted the ability to speak other languages into his mind before. So Emma being able to implant something like the ability to walk in high heels wasn't hard to believe, even if it did sound a bit strange. However, Bobby immediately noticed another problem.

"The professor said that this body swap thing made it so he couldn't go into my mind," Bobby pointed out.

"Yes," Emma gave a wry smile, "But in case you've forgotten...I went through the same experience. Like it or not...we are connected. I can still sense your mind." She frowned, "I admit that it is fainter to me than normal...but I am confident that we can do this."

After a moment of careful consideration, Bobby nodded his agreement. He didn't like the idea of letting Emma into his head, but she had a point. This was necessary. The others had made it so.

With that, Bobby closed his eyes and performed the mental exercises that the professor had taught him years earlier. He carefully contained his thoughts and memories, locking everything that he didn't want Emma to see behind thick mental doors...especially his memory of the incident with Chalk. Of course, Bobby knew that Emma could break through those mental defenses if she really wanted to. Oddly enough though, Bobby trusted her not to do that.

Once Bobby announced that he was ready, Emma went into his mind. He could feel her presence, doing whatever it was in his mind that telepaths did. And almost before he had realized it, she was out, announcing that it was done. Bobby just blinked. He didn't feel any different.

"All right," Bobby announced, pulling the cape away from his body and standing there naked in front of Emma, his determination overcoming what embarrassment and self-consciousness he felt. "Let's do this..."

Then Bobby reached for the clothes, holding the panties in his hand for a moment, trying not to think about how embarrassing it would be to wear something like that. And with a grimace of determination, he started getting dressed. Emma watched in silence as Bobby slipped on the panties and then started trying to figure out the corset.

"Let me help with that," Emma told him, sounding a little more casual than before.

Emma knew exactly what she was doing, having put those very clothes on herself countless times before. With Emma's help, Bobby soon had the corset on. It was tight and a bit uncomfortable, but not quite as bad as he had feared. Then they moved to the other clothes, with Bobby sitting on the edge of the bed while slipping on the thigh length stiletto heeled boots and the long white opera gloves.

As Bobby they were just about finished up and Bobby sat there looking at Emma, he realized the irony of the situation. Ever since the exchange, every time that he had needed help, it had been Cain Marko or Emma Frost who had been there for him. The Juggernaut and the White Queen, the two people whom he would have least expected. And at the same time, his friends, those who should have been there for him had only questioned his abilities and rubbed his face in what had already been a hard situation to deal with. With those thoughts, Bobby grew even more determined.

"Are you all right?" Emma gently asked Bobby, looking a little concerned which was not a frequent occurrence for her.

"Fine," Bobby told her, "I was just thinking..."
Then Bobby took a deep breath and stood up, being half surprised when he didn't feel at all unbalanced. He stood there for a second, making sure of his balance in the four inch heels that he was wearing. Then he took several cautious steps, finding that he did know how to adjust his body and walk in them just fine. And with that, his confidence began to grow.

Bobby silently walked back and forth across his bedroom several times to make sure of his balance and ability to walk in those heels, picking up his pace as he did so and finding that he had no problems. He was unaware of the fact that with each pass, his walk and body language was becoming more natural and feminine.

"It worked," Bobby finally said, though Emma just gave him smug look which cried out 'I told you so'.

Finally, Bobby went to the mirror and paused, staring at his reflection in disbelief. It was not his reflection, it was the White Queen. With the new clothes, his already gorgeous body looked even sexier...having a more dangerous edge to it. In fact, he looked like some kind of white clad dominatrix.

"Wow," Bobby whispered, looking his body over, running his hands over his bare but sexy looking waist. Then he reached for the corset which covered his ribs and the lower part of his breasts, including the nipples, though revealed a great deal of cleavage and left little to the imagination.

"Ahem," Emma interrupted Bobby's thoughts, looking perhaps a little uncomfortable as well as amused with Bobby's reaction. "I believe that you are still lacking something..." Then she lifted up the cape and carefully hooked it around Bobby's shoulders. "Now it's complete..."

"I feel like I should be holding a whip or something," Bobby muttered.

Emma cracked a faint smile at that. "I only carried one on special occasions for effect." Bobby wasn't sure whether she was joking or not. But after remembering who it was that he was dealing with, he suspected that the answer was probably 'not'.

Bobby adjusted the cape just a little, pausing to run his fingers through the fur trim. Then he took another long look into the mirror, purposely adjusting his expression to look as arrogant as he could, making him look even more than the White Queen than he already did.

"You remember what to do?" Emma asked, appearing satisfied.

Giving a nod, Bobby turned away from the mirror and responded, "Yes." He narrowed his eyes, filled with determination...and even anger. "I want to see the looks on their faces..."

With that, Bobby left his quarters and started down the hall purposefully, leaving Emma behind as her presence would spoil the effect. One student, a teenage boy saw Bobby, paled at the sight and then immediately jumped out of his path.

Several minutes later, Bobby reached the part of the mansion where Emma had said that she'd sensed Kurt at. And when he saw Kurt laughing with Warren and Hank, his suspicions were confirmed, steeling his resolve even further.

"Hello boys," Bobby greeted them, letting a bit of sexiness ooze into his voice. It was not at all difficult with his current body.

Then Bobby stood there, looking as confident and at ease with himself, his new body and his clothes as he possibly could. Emma's implanted skills improved his confidence and made this much easier, with his determination and anger at them for the joke doing the rest.

"Um...hi Bobby," Kurt responded, his eyes going wide as he stared at Bobby in surprise.

Bobby just smiled sexily, unaware of his feminine body language which augmented the effect. He was however very aware of the stunned looks on all three of their faces, and the way that they were staring at him.

"Nice clothes," Warren stated, smirking a little as he said it.

"Oh this," Bobby shrugged, as if not bothered at all by the fact that he was wearing such a sexy outfit. "Someone took my clothes and this was the only thing I had to wear..."

"It's certainly...," Kurt started.

"Revealing," Hank finished, looking a little as though he was embarrassed for his role in the joke but equally eager to see Bobby's reactions.

"I guess," Bobby responded almost absently, silently thankful for his acting ability. "But to tell truth, this was just something to wear while I looked for all of my own clothes..."

"Do tell," Kurt smiled with mock innocence, though Bobby didn't miss the way that his eyes went to Bobby's cleavage.

Bobby smiled sweetly at him, feeling absolutely disgusted with himself but remembering why he was doing it. It was for a good cause. As Emma had said, to get back at them for their little prank at his expense, and to ensure that they didn't attempt something else like that in the future.

"Oh yes," Bobby responded casually, "Someone had the bright idea of taking all of my clothes... And I don't know what I'm going to do if I can't find them..."

Warren started to snicker at that, though did an admirable job of covering it up. Kurt smiled while Hank did his best to look innocent, which was not all that effective with his blue feline face.

"You know," Bobby continued, still acting as sweet and sexy as his stomach could handle, "I'm going for a little walk to the courtyard to clear my head. And I just hope that whoever took my clothes puts them back by the time I get back. If not...," he dropped the sweet act, narrowing his eyes dangerously and letting his voice turn ice cold, "I would hate to think of what could happen to those responsible. If an ice cube down the back is shocking..." Bobby willed small crystals of ice to form on all three of their backs, causing them to simultaneously jump and grab at them, while he continued on smoothly, "I would hate to think what it would be like for those responsible to suddenly wake up at 2 AM in beds made out of ice. EVERY morning."

For a moment, Kurt, Warren and Hank all stared at Bobby in shock, their mouths open in disbelief. They all shivered slightly just at the thought, and the look in his eyes which told them that he would do just that without a moment of hesitation.

Then Bobby turned all sweet again, giving them an innocent smile, "I do so hope my clothes are there when I get back."

With that, Bobby turned and left, his confident sexy walk drawing the full attention of the men that he left behind.

"Tell me," Warren gasped from behind Bobby, "Was that Bobby or Emma....?"

"I don't know," Kurt muttered, looking a bit confused, "I don't know..."

Bobby just smiled, though it was a grim smile. He had loved the looks on their faces when they'd seen him, seen that their little joke hadn't worked out quite like they had expected. He had loved the look on their faces when he'd delivered his little threat.

However, the experiences of the joke and just a minute earlier had made one thing VERY clear to Bobby. Even though they had been friends for years, his exchange with Emma had changed things between them. It was quite obvious to him now that he was no longer one of the boys... And might never be again.

When Bobby returned to his quarters a little later, he was pleased to discover that all of his clothes had 'mysteriously' returned, the same way that they had vanished in the first place. They had even been placed back in his dresser and closet where they belonged. It seemed that the confrontation had worked just as planned, making every bit of the embarrassment worth it.

The Ice Queen Cometh
part 5 of 6
By Morpheus

New York was a huge city, with countless people of every type imaginable filling it to near bursting. There was strangeness enough that even mutants could be considered 'normal' when compared to many of the supposedly normal humans. And having originally come from a small town, Bobby always found such a large city at least a little alien.

Bobby frowned as he turned his attention away from the surrounding city and looked over at Archangel, Cyclops and Emma, his current team for their latest mission. It was Bobby's first mission since the exchange, and though he refused to show any sign of it, he was feeling a little worried. In spite of the show that he'd given Cyclops in the danger room two days earlier, his self-confidence was still shaky.

For a moment, Bobby thought about why he was there and quickly ran through the mission in his mind. One of the professor's informants had reported that there was a mutant serial killer on the loose who was going after mutants. Specifically, he was murdering young and confused mutants, most of whom probably didn't even know how to control their powers well enough to defend themselves against him. And as usual, it was up to the X Men to stop him.

"So where do we find this guy?" Bobby asked grimly.

Then as Bobby turned to look at the others, he noticed for the first time that Archangel was gone. He'd obviously taken to the air to scout ahead while Bobby was distracted by his own thoughts.

"The professor's source said that he uses a nearby warehouse," Cyclops explained, pointing to a large building.

"I verified it with Cerebra," Emma added, "There were several unknown mutant signatures present..."

"Then let's go get him," Bobby growled.

Cyclops nodded and started in that direction, "My thoughts exactly..."

As they reached the warehouse, Archangel landed back in front of them, quickly announcing, "I just saw a man hurrying inside a few seconds ago." Then he paused for a moment before he thoughtfully asked, "Any idea what this guy's powers are?"

"None," Cyclops responded grimly, "So be careful."

The moment they stepped into the warehouse, Emma exclaimed, "He's about to kill someone..."

"Hurry," Cyclops ordered unnecessarily as he rushed forward.

Then they turned the corner and saw him. He didn't look anything like a super villain, or even most of the dangerous mutants that they'd encountered in the past. In fact, he looked surprisingly...normal. The man had short black hair and instead of being dressed in spandex or some strange armor, he was wearing blue jeans, a bright red T-shirt and a brown leather jacket.

The only reason that they realized that this nondescript man was the one they were looking for was that his eyes were beginning to glow a strange blue, and he stood a young teenager who was tied up on the floor at his feet. A teenage boy who was obviously a mutant from his green skin.

Before the X Men realized what was going on, the killer reached down for the young mutant with his bare hands, then there was a burst of blue light and a howling scream of pain. When the glow faded, it was immediately obvious that the victim was dead. His body was charred and desiccated.

"Oh yeah," the killer laughed as a green glow started to surround his body, just a moment before a burst of light shot out of his eyes and hit the wall without doing any apparent damage. "Might be useful..."

Suddenly, Emma exclaimed, "I picked up some of his thoughts. He calls himself Kraze...and he steals the powers of the mutants he kills."

"What the fuck?" Kraze demanded as he suddenly noticed the four mutants standing there. "Who the hell are you?"

"We're the X Men," Cyclops responded grimly, "Surrender now and save yourself a lot of hurt."

Kraze blinked for a moment, "X Men?" Then he started to grin, "More mutant powers for me to take... Great."

Without any further warning, Kraze swung out with his arm, sending more than a dozen glowing blue energy knives flying through the air. Each of them seemed to be made of electricity, with arcs flying between them as they went past the X Men and hit the wall of crates behind them.

"Damn," Kraze spat, sending another burst of electric blades flying.

Without a word, Emma transformed into organic diamond, while Bobby iced up and created an ice wall between them and the killer. Cyclops was already changing position and firing back, sending a beam of red energy from his eyes, hitting a crate and ricocheting his blast to hit Kraze from the side.

"Damn it," Archangel spat out, obviously frustrated at not having enough room in the warehouse for him to really fly in. Still, he was able to take off, even if he didn't have much space for maneuvering.

"Careful," Emma called out, "He can kill you and steal your powers by touching you..." Since she was in diamond form and her telepathic abilities didn't work at the same time, she had obviously picked that out of his head before she'd shifted.

Kraze fired another burst of electric blades at Bobby and Emma, with Bobby stopping most of the blades with an ice wall, though Emma was hit with one of the ones that he'd missed. Fortunately, in her diamond form it didn't seem to have hurt her.

Just then, Bobby heard someone crying, "Help!"

"Check it out," Cyclops told Bobby, "We'll deal with him..."

Bobby nodded and ran to where he heard the call, stopping when he found himself facing a heavy steel cage. There was blonde girl in it who looked about 16 or 17, though he had to take a second look at her after she started moving. She was ripped... Her muscles were bulging more than some body builders that he'd seen.

"Please help me," the blonde cried out, then pulled a blanket from the floor around her as if to hide her body. She suddenly seemed self-conscious about it.

"Just a moment," Bobby told her, holding out his hand and making the metal of the lock become so cold that it shattered from the brittleness. "Find some place to hide," Bobby told her, "We'll take care of him..." He gestured in the direction where the others were fighting Kraze.

Then Bobby turned and ran back to the fight, just in time to see Kraze glowing bright green, just as he had after killing that young mutant. Suddenly, he shot bursts of green light from his hands, hitting both Cyclops and Emma at the same time. Both collapsed to the floor.

"I can't move!" Cyclops yelled out, a hint of fear in his voice, though only someone who had known him as long as Bobby had would have picked it up.

"My newest power," Kraze grinned, "A stun beam. I just got it a couple minutes ago..."

"The powers he steals only last up to two weeks," Emma called out, revealing more information that she'd taken before turning diamond, "So he won't have many..."

"Maybe only two," Bobby muttered, thinking of the two powers that he'd already seen. However, he'd been an X Man long enough to know not to take anything for granted.

"I've got him," Archangel dove at him from above.

Suddenly, Kraze split...or more accurately, there were now five identical versions of him standing around. Archangel swept through two of the Kraze's...and both vanished the moment that he'd touched them. And at the same time, one of the remaining Krazes started to glow green and fired another stun beam, hitting Archangel from behind.

"Three down, one to go," Kraze laughed, "I can't wait to try their powers..."

"Try this power," Bobby muttered, freezing the floor, causing Kraze to lose his balance and fall. The two remaining duplicates vanished at that.

Bobby started towards Kraze, but suddenly a thick mist poured out of the killer's mouth, quickly surrounding him and making it difficult for Bobby to see. When the mist started to clear enough for Bobby make things out again, he caught sight of Kraze running out the warehouse door.

"I'll come back after I get him," Bobby called out as he raced after Kraze.

As soon as Bobby got outside, he grimaced as he realized that there were five Kraze's again...running in different directions. He knew that one of them was the real think and the rest were probably illusions of some sort. But how to tell...

"Got it," Bobby gasped, realizing that the real Kraze would have a body temperature and the illusions wouldn't.

He had never tried that particular trick before, but knew that there was no time like the present. So with that, he concentrated on feeling the temperature and was rewarded when he could suddenly see EVERYTHING differently. He was actually seeing...sensing temperatures around him. And he immediately spotted the real Kraze.

Once Kraze realized that his trick had failed, he turned and stirred firing burst of electric daggers back at Bobby, and then in every direction around him, without apparent regard to people he might hit. And to Bobby's horror, he was actually laughing as he did it.

Bobby used an ice slide to get close to Kraze, then started forming ice walls to block him in, trying to keep him contained and most of all, trying to protect the people around him.

"C'mon you fucking bitch," Kraze screamed out, "I'll fuck you crazy and then take your powers..." A stun beam followed that pronouncement.

Kraze took a deep breath, then blew out more mist, hiding himself in a veil of fog. Bobby cursed as he tried making out where the killer was hiding in there, when suddenly a green flash of light shot out of the fog. Bobby tried avoiding it but it had come so quickly that he couldn't dodge it entirely and the stun beam glanced his leg.

"SHIT," Bobby cursed as he lost his balance and fell to the ground, most of his leg feeling completely numb. But unlike the others, for him it was only his leg.

While Bobby was distracted by the fall and his leg, he hadn't noticed Kraze coming closer and now standing right above him. Kraze's eyes were glowing blue, just as they had before he'd killed that other mutant. But there was more than that, there was a look of lust in his eyes...similar to the one in Chalk's, as though he was seriously considering raping Bobby first.

Bobby gasped in terror as he suddenly realized just how close he was to both rape and death. And at the moment, he didn't know which of the two fates would be worse.

Suddenly, a familiar voice called out, "Here I come to save the day...!"

"What the fuck?" Kraze gasped as he stepped back, "What's with all the interruptions today...?"

Bobby looked up to see a blue and red spandex clad figure standing on a light pole up above them both. "Spider Man?" Bobby gasped in surprise.

"Back away from the lady," Spider Man announced, dropping to the ground and adding, "I don't know what's going on, but I can't have you shooting up my favorite city..."

With a grunt, Bobby started getting back to his feet, though having to use his good foot to hold his weight. His other foot was still pretty numb and he had no idea how long before it wore off.

"Thanks Spidey," Bobby told the other hero, "It's good seeing you again..."

They'd always gotten along pretty well in the past but he'd never been so happy to see the wall crawler as he was at that moment. But at the same time, he felt angry and ashamed that Spider Man had to see him in those circumstances.

While Kraze was looking confused, Spider Man turned to Bobby and asked, "Do I know you?" He sounded a bit confused.

"I'm an X Man," Bobby responded bitterly as he realized that this was quite accurate in several ways.

Just then, Bobby noticed that Kraze had taken advantage of their distraction to try running for it again, once again creating the illusionary duplicates which were running in different directions. Bobby used the temperature sight again and sent a wave of cold which caused the ground underneath Kraze to turn into a sheet of ice and sent him flying.

"Frigid bitch," Kraze screamed as he scrambled to get back to his feet and fire a burst of electric knives, which Bobby blocked with an ice wall, just as Spider Man easily jumped out of the way.

"I'm getting real tired of you," Bobby growled.

Once again, Kraze tried the trick with the mist, though this time Bobby was ahead of him and created spikes of ice to block his escape route. He tried firing another stun blast, which was aimed at Spider Man this time, though was easily avoided.

"Feisty one isn't he?" Spider Man commented as he used his web shooters to spray webbing right into the middle of the fog bank. A stream of curses told them that he'd hit the target.

When the mist cleared enough, Bobby could see that Kraze was pinned to the ground with super strong spider webs. And since he couldn't use his hands, he apparently couldn't fire stun beams or electric knives.

"So who are you again?" Spider Man asked Bobby, looking him over and adding, "Let me guess...you're called Ice Woman..."

"Close enough," Bobby spat, "I'm Ice Man..." He looked down at himself before bitterly adding, "Or at least I was..."

"What happened," the wall crawler asked, a hint of skepticism mixed in with the curiosity and surprise, "You go on a trip to Amsterdam..."

"It's a long story," Bobby sighed tiredly.

"Well you're certainly better looking," Spider Man went on, beginning to get Bobby annoyed. He liked Spider Man, but the other hero could really get on your nerves at times. Sensing Bobby's mood, Spider Man backed off a little. "We work pretty well together. Maybe we should consider teaming up more often..."

Bobby snorted at that, then responded, "I don't think so." He gave Spider Man a steady look, "You love being in the spotlight too much and would probably insist any team you're a part of be called the Spider Friends or something." Bobby shook his head, even smiling faintly, "I don't think so."

"Fair enough," Spider Man nodded, then jokingly added, "But it coulda been fun..." And with that, he shot out a long strand of his webbing and swung off as though he were Tarzan on a vine.

Once Bobby was sure that Kraze wasn't going anywhere, he went back to check on the others. Cyclops and Emma were already moving about, though a bit slowly. The paralysis in his own leg had faded quickly so he was relieved that it was leaving the others just as quickly.

Then Bobby noticed that the muscular blonde girl he'd rescued had come out of hiding and was talking to Emma. "People call me Buff," she introduced herself, blushing a bit as she was obviously a bit self-conscious of her physique.

"Well Buff," Emma started the 'recruitment' speech with a gentle smile, "We have a school that was created just for mutant individuals such as yourself..."

Bobby listened in for a few seconds, then turned and left them alone. Their mission had been completed, an insane serial killer had been stopped, and they had even recruited a new student for the school. So, Bobby had to ask himself, why didn't he feel happy?

--------------------

After they had returned to the mansion from the mission, Bobby took his leave of the other's and slowly started walking back to his quarters. Kraze was a minor villain compared to what they were used to dealing with, yet Bobby was still a bit sore from the fight and looking forward to a nice hot bath.

Bobby was lost in thought as he walked down the hallway, wondering when they were going to find the mutant who'd been responsible for stealing his body away from him. Wondering if he was going to get his body back before having to go through another period. And though he didn't want to even consider it, wondering if he might be stuck like that for the rest of his life.

Being caught up in his own thoughts, Bobby was scarcely aware of his surroundings. He just continued walking towards his quarters, almost on autopilot, until he found himself almost walking straight into a wall. A wall of pure muscle.

"What...?" Bobby blinked, then gasped in horror as he saw that it was Chalk that he'd nearly collided with.

"Hi Ms. Frost," Chalk grinned down at him, and it was not a nice grin.

Bobby's heart nearly froze in terror, thoughts of what had happened last time with Chalk running through his mind. He was now aware that there was no one else in the hall with him, and doubted that he'd be so lucky to have Cain save him a second time.

"You shouldn't keep teasing me like that," Chalk growled, looking a little angry, "It makes me mad..."

"Oh shit," Bobby whispered, taking several steps back as Chalk started to slowly advance.

Then Bobby found himself backed up against a wall, his heart racing wildly as the raw terror surged through his body. Chalk was going to get him...

Bobby cringed back helplessly, feeling so weak and vulnerable. He hated his new body...he hated being a weak woman. He was weak and helpless, meat for anyone who wanted him. Chalk had shown him that previously, just as Kraze had done a short while earlier. If it hadn't been for Cain...if it hadn't been for Spider Man. Even Cyclops, Scott...his own friend had pointed that out to him with that stupid training session.

As Bobby thought about what Chalk had tried to do to him before, about what Chalk was going to do, his fear started to turn to anger. Thoughts of Kraze made him burn with fury. His own weakness...his own helplessness...his own vulnerabilities made him absolutely furious. Everyone saw him as weak...even his friends...even himself. But no more.

"No more," Bobby growled, standing up straighter and glaring at Chalk.

And as Bobby stood there, glaring at Chalk, he knew that he couldn't keep doing this. He couldn't keep living in fear, in shame, and self-loathing. He wasn't going to be a victim anymore. Not for Chalk...not for anyone.

At that moment, an intense determination filled Bobby, his resolve turning to steel. And in an instant, his burning anger turned white hot, then became cold...freezing cold. An icy fury filled Bobby and he was no longer afraid.

"Go away," Bobby stated quietly, coldly. He glared at Chalk, who nearly took a step back from the intensity in Bobby's eyes.

However, Chalk quickly recovered and smirked, "I'm just gonna give you what you want Ms. Frost..." And then he reached for Bobby.

Bobby didn't move, didn't cringe or try to run. Instead, he stood his ground with an icy calm and unleashed his powers.

In an instant, a wave of intense icy cold washed over Chalk, who let out a horrible scream as he collapsed backwards and hit the ground. Chalk tried moving, though he shuddered and shivered, his expression of pained shock blurred by the thin layer of ice crystals which covered his entire body.

For a moment, Bobby just stood there, realizing that he could have stopped Chalk at any time. Chalk had to touch him to prevent Bobby from using his powers, and he could have easily prevented that had not his own fear and doubts prevented him.

"Never again," Bobby whispered to himself. With an icy determination, Bobby silently promised himself that he would NEVER be overwhelmed by fear and helplessness again. Never again would he be a victim.

Then Bobby stared down at Chalk, not saying a word as he watched the larger mutant shaking uncontrollably. It was obvious that his blast of cold had messed Chalk up even worse than he'd intended. And with that, Bobby smiled...a very cold smile.

--------------------

Once again, Bobby Drake found himself sitting quietly in the stylish office of Professor Charles Xavier. And at the moment, the professor was sitting across the desk from him, a furious expression on his face.

"How could you?" Xavier broke the silence with his angry demand. He glared at Bobby, "How could you do that to one of our students?"

Bobby met the professor's gaze, then calmly responded, "It was an accident."

"An accident?" Xavier demanded, "Chalk is in serious condition...suffering from hypothermia and frost bite. He will most likely even lose several fingers as a result of this..."

With a slight shrug, Bobby lied, "Like I said...it was an accident..."

Though Bobby didn't say so aloud, stopping Chalk...hurting Chalk had been his intention at the time, though he hadn't really considered to just what degree. Nor did he particularly care even now. Somehow, Bobby just couldn't bring himself to feel any regret whatsoever for what he'd done to Chalk.

"An accident," the professor repeated, "If it hadn't been for Chalk's mutant physique, he probably would have died." Then he shook his head, sounding gravely disappointed as he added, "I thought that I'd taught you to control your powers better than that..."

Bobby frowned, wishing that the professor would finish chewing him out and end the lecture. He could see why the professor would see it as a big deal, but Bobby didn't feel any guilt for what he'd done and knew that Chalk had deserved it...and more.

When Xavier had calmed down, Bobby told him what he knew was expected, "I'll be careful and make sure it doesn't happen again..."

A minute later, Bobby calmly strolled out of Xavier's office, thankful that the lecture was over. He noticed several of the other X Men waiting outside, looking at him expectantly, as if waiting for him to explain what had happened with Chalk. However, Bobby quickly walked past them, barely giving them a second look. He was much more interested in going to the medical bay and taking a look at Chalk. He even smiled faintly in anticipation.

Archangel, Nightcrawler and the Beast were a little startled when Bobby walked past them without saying a word, or even acknowledging their presence. It was not at all like the Bobby that they all knew so well.

"He certainly is acting strange," Archangel...Warren stated with a frown.

"Indeed," the Beast...Hank agreed, "Most peculiar."

The blue skinned Nightcrawler nodded his head in agreement as well, shifting his tail back and forth as he slowly responded in his German accent, "Ja." he frowned, looking in the direction Bobby had taken, "It isn't like Bobby to hurt a student...even by accident." Then Kurt's frown deepened, turning into a scowl, "He has been acting very distant recently...even more so than normal since his change. I wonder if perhaps he might not be influenced by Emma's personality..."

"Is that how you think of me?" A voice asked. They turned around to see Emma walking towards them, still in Bobby's body and wearing the white suit which had become her normal form of dress since the exchange.

Then they noticed the large figure of the Juggernaut following behind Emma, his sheer size making it easy to miss Northstar who was also present.

As they stopped, Northstar gave a longer than normal look at Emma before quickly averting his eyes. It was obvious to those who noticed that Northstar was attracted to Emma, just as he had been to Bobby, though Bobby never would have returned that interest. But now that it was Emma inside of Bobby's body, and she was still a woman inside...still interested in men... The possibilities had to be on Northstar's mind, whether he would admit it or not.

Kurt and Warren exchanged a quick look, though neither said anything. They both knew that it might not be a good idea to mention their suspicions to Bobby, who even normally would not have taken the idea of Northstar being interested in his body very well. And with the way he had been acting recently...

"Do you truly think I am so cold hearted as that?" Emma asked coldly, continuing her greeting.

However, no one responded, not needing to. She knew that this was exactly what they thought of her. Her past might have been forgiven, but it had definitely not been forgotten. And as normal, she showed no indications of being bothered by that.

"Have you considered," Emma asked, "that his attitude may be entirely of his own?"

"I doubt that," Warren stated firmly, "I've known Bobby for a long time..."

"Oh?" Emma's eyes narrowed while her expression became slightly more haughty, "People are rarely so one dimensional as you seem to believe."

"There is truth in that," Hank mused. "People often act according to their expected roles, and a drastic change can force someone to reevaluate those roles and their self-image."

Everyone went silent at that, with most of them knowing first hand just how accurate that statement was. At one time or another each of them had been forced to undergo drastic changes of one sort or another, whether it be their bodies or other aspects of their lives.

"I think that there is more to it than that," Emma thought aloud, "Bobby has been growing increasingly bitter since our exchange, but I am not entirely certain that being trapped in my body is the sole cause..."

"Maybe it's because of what Chalk tried..." the Juggernaut started, then stopped as he realized what he was saying. "Never mind..."

"Please continue Cain," another voice broke in. They turned to see Professor Xavier standing at his door and realized that they were still standing right outside of his office. "If you know something about what is happening with Bobby, please tell me..."

"I can't," Cain mumbled, surprising the others who were not used to seeing the powerful Juggernaut looking so uncomfortable. "I promised Bobby..."

"Cain," Xavier gently pleaded with his stepbrother, "If it can help Bobby, I need to know..."

Cain hesitated for a moment before finally giving a reluctant nod. "All right," he sighed, "But only you..." He gave a meaningful look at the professor.

Xavier nodded, "Thank you..."

With that, they stepped back into the professor's office, and just as the door was closing, those still outside could hear Cain's chagrined voice, "It's like this..."

The Ice Queen Cometh
part 6 of 6
By Morpheus

Bobby Drake took his time as he strolled through the hallway of the mansion, several students quickly scrambling to get out of his way, though he scarcely noticed. Word had spread of the way that Bobby had 'attacked' Chalk and no one wanted to risk being next.

He had just come from the medical bay, not that he had been there long as Annie had chased him out of there almost immediately. But not before he'd gotten a glimpse of Chalk. Somehow, the sight had brought a strange feeling of closure...and of satisfaction.

Suddenly, a loud and familiar alarm filled the air. It was the signal for all students to immediately leave their class rooms and head for the secure area of the mansion. It was the signal for all X Men to immediately get read. It was the signal that someone was trying to breach the school's defenses.

Without a moment of hesitation, Bobby iced up, transforming his body into its icy form to prepare for battle. And at the same time, even in mid transformation, he was already running down the hall. That alarm never went off unless it was serious.

As Bobby reached the front hall, he saw that almost every X Man who was currently in the mansion had already assembled there. Suddenly there was burst of smoke that smelled like sulfur, and standing in the middle of it was Nightcrawler, who had just teleported in.

"What's goin on?" the Juggernaut demanded as he came running into the room as well.

Professor Xavier came right after the Juggernaut, breathing a little hard as he was not used to the physical exercise that the others were. He paused, a grim expression on his face as he looked at Bobby.

"As soon as this is over," the professor told Bobby, "We need to talk..."

Bobby frowned, then caught the look on the Juggernaut's face, a look of extreme discomfort just before he turned his face away. What had happened was immediately obvious to Bobby. The Juggernaut had told...he'd broken his promise and TOLD.

With a deep scowl, Bobby glared at the Juggernaut, and then at the professor, not feeling at all happy. Not in the least. Cain had betrayed him. Who knew...? Just the professor? Everyone? It had bad enough that the Juggernaut had seen what had happened...but for everyone else to know too... A cold anger at that betrayal...at the revelation of his shame started to rise.

But then Cyclops yelled out "SENTINELS."

Bobby blinked at that exclamation, that single word being enough to explain what was going on. The mansion was being attacked by Sentinels...giant robots that had been created for the sole purpose of hunting down mutants and killing them. The X Men had a long history of fighting those robots, from the earliest version to the most recent. And Bobby knew that they were nothing to take lightly. Not in the least.

Cyclops didn't have to say anything else, as everyone had already charged out of the mansion to go deal with the Sentinels. Bobby realized that he was the last one inside, besides the professor, whose telepathic powers would be useless against them and who was already going to join the students.

As soon as Bobby ran outside, he gasped at the sight of the Sentinels. There were five of them, five purple and magenta robots, each of them thirty feet tall and possessing enough power to take over most small countries with ease. However, it wasn't the sight of the five huge Sentinels which startled him the most, but the fact that there were dozens of smaller ones, just a little larger than human sized, flying around and firing energy blasts from their hands and eyes.

Before Bobby even had time to think the fight was already on. Archangel was flying above, trying to distract the Sentinels though he lacked their firepower and would not be able to seriously stand up to any of them. The most that he could do was try maneuvering between them, perhaps tricking them into shooting each other has he had done in past fights with them.

Cyclops was firing blast after blast, doing more damage to the Sentinels than anyone else. The beams would come out of his eyes and smash straight through one of the smaller Sentinels, sometimes even ricocheting and destroying a second or third at the same time. However, Bobby knew that it wouldn't take long before the Sentinels adapted themselves to become immune from his powers.

The Beast and Nightcrawler were both jumping around, trying to tear the heads off of the smaller Sentinels, with Nightcrawler having the most luck as all he had to do was grab hold and teleport away, taking their heads along with him.

Bobby was in the fight as well, forming massive mounds of ice around the smaller Sentinels, trying to freeze the feet of the larger ones so that they wouldn't be able to move. He quickly avoided their attacks, creating ice walls between them to protect himself and then sliding away on his ice slides before attacking the next.

Without warning, something flew right into Bobby, smashing him off of his ice sled and to the ground. He groaned as he got up, realizing that it was Emma in his body.

"Damn," Emma groaned as she sat up, rubbing at her diamond shoulder, "My powers make it hard for them to hurt me, but being diamond hard scarcely makes me a danger to them..."

"But it does seem to make you an effective projectile," the Beast commented as he jumped over one small Sentinel, ripping its head off in the process. "And that does provide me with an inspiration."

Then the Beast yelled out to the Juggernaut, who was in the middle of tearing the leg off of one of the larger Sentinels, while Cyclops was blasting it in the head. A moment later, the Juggernaut came over to them.

"We call it the fastball special," the Beast announced.

Juggernaut nodded, knowing exactly what the Beast meant as he'd been on the receiving end of that maneuver before. Within seconds, the Juggernaut had picked up Emma...and thrown her straight at one of the larger Sentinels, and straight through it.

For a moment, Bobby allowed himself a faint smile, seeing that they were doing good. That was until he saw Northstar and Archangel both go down, draped in some sort of glowing blue bubbles that the Sentinels had launched at them. Both X Men seemed unconscious, though still alive.

A massive blast of energy from one of the giant Sentinels hit the ground next to Cyclops, who was thrown backwards with a yell and an obviously injured leg. He would have been disintegrated a moment later of Nightcrawler hadn't suddenly teleported him away, just in time.

"Damn," Bobby growled, seeing the X Men going down one by one. They were outnumbered and outpowered. It was only a matter of time unless they pulled a miracle out of their hats.

Just then, Bobby realized that he was surrounded by the smaller, seven foot tall Sentinels. From one he'd seen, they were each quite powerful, not to mention faster and more maneuverable than the large ones. And he suddenly felt a stabbing surge of fear as they all started aiming their hands...and their energy blasts right at him.

For a blinding instant, Bobby felt a surge of terror. By some trick of his mind, they each seemed to look like Chalk to him. The fear...the shame...

Suddenly, Bobby growled, "NO," as he was filled with that icy fury.

Bobby felt strangely in control as he lashed out with his powers, releasing bitter, limitless cold upon all the Sentinels surrounding him at the same time. It was a cold deeper than what he normally wielded, a pure cold without any of ice he normally generated at the same time.

In a mere moment, everything within fifteen feet of Bobby had dropped in temperature to far below zero. It stopped at zero Kelvin...at Absolute Zero...at the point where no energy was possible. Everything within that sphere had been flash frozen...including six Sentinels.

With a cold smile and an even colder look in his eyes, Bobby pushed over the first Sentinel, which fell backwards and shattered upon the ground as though it were made of fine crystal. At the temperatures he had created for them, everything, even the metal that the Sentinels were made of became extremely brittle.

"No more," Bobby whispered as he shattered the rest of those helpless, flash frozen Sentinels. "No more..."

He took a step forward, seeing that even the Juggernaut was now in trouble with the larger Sentinels. Almost all of the other X Men had been pushed back or neutralized by the Sentinels, taking about half of the robots with them. However, soon the robots would turn their attention to the mansion, and all of the helpless students within.

"You betrayed me," Bobby whispered as he stared at the struggling Juggernaut, realizing that everyone knew about his shame and humiliation. He had trusted Cain to keep quiet, and now realized that this was a mistake.

However, Bobby tore his mind from his feelings of betrayal and put it firmly back to the business at hand. The battle... The Sentinels...

With a cold anger and a steely determination, Bobby started for the Juggernaut. When two smaller Sentinels flew towards him, he casually blocked their attacks with a wall of ice...then gestured at them, causing ice crystals to form within their metal bodies. The ice crystals quickly spread and expanded, until there was nowhere to go but out. Both Sentinels burst open, torn apart from within. Bobby didn't waste any more time with them as he continued towards his team mate.

"You metal bastard," the Juggernaut yelled out, just as one of the larger Sentinels hit him with an energy blast from its hands.

There was a massive charred spot, even a small crater where the blast had hit. However, in the middle of the blast area was the Juggernaut, his armored costume mostly gone and skin being somewhat singed. He winced as he tried standing up, injured but obviously still alive and ready to fight.

"Guess I'm too tough for ya," Juggernaut sneered.

While the larger Sentinel was readying itself for another attack, a smaller one came straight at the Juggernaut from behind. But before it could attack, Bobby fired a blast of cold energy from his hand, hitting that smaller Sentinel and flash freezing it just as he had the other ones earlier.

"Watch out," Nightcrawler's voice called out, "Here come more of them..."

Bobby turned around, seeing that all of the remaining smaller Sentinels had gathered together, and there were more of them than he would have expected. About a dozen. And they were obviously ready to fight, as they were already firing energy blasts.

For a moment, Bobby just glared at them, then at the larger Sentinels. He was tired of them. He was tired of people...of robots trying to push him around and control him because they thought he was weak. Because he was trapped in the body of a woman. Chalk... Scott and his stupid tests... That practical joke... Kraze... These Sentinels were just the latest.

In a mere instant, a thousand thoughts flashed through Bobby's head. As much as he hated it, he knew that he probably wouldn't get back to his own body. That he would eventually have to accept that Emma's body now was his body.

"Bobbie Frost," he whispered, remembering what they had called him. "Ice Man..." Then he shook his head, "Ice Woman..." That was probably what they would call him from then on. However, he remembered what else they had called him in the mansion, what the students said behind his back when they didn't think he could hear. What he had even heard a few of his 'friends' calling him. "Ice Queen..."

Deciding that he'd had enough, of the Sentinels...of the patronizing...of everything, Bobby grimaced in determination. He had sworn it again and he was swearing it to himself again. He was never going to be anyone's victim again. He was going to be what he had to be...cold and hard.

Then with a grimace filled with an icy anger and a cold determination, Bobby gathered his power. ALL of his power. He was unaware of the temperature around him dropping...of sheets of ice spreading out from around him. Flakes of snow started to fall into the courtyard, and still Bobby didn't seem to notice.

Suddenly, the air around Bobby shimmered, the ice that made up his body doing likewise. As he prepared himself mentally, the ice that comprised his body began to shift, perhaps a result of his unconscious mind. Even as the cold spread, several icicles, small spikes of ice began to grow from Bobby's body. A row of small spikes formed on the back of each forearm, while a single spike formed on each of his shoulders. At the same time, Bobby's hair became more spiky, giving a faint impression that he might be wearing a tiara or crown of ice.

Bobby was unaware of all of this though, his intention being on the power...more than he'd ever pulled at any one time. More power than he'd ever even realized that he possessed until that moment. It flowed through him, filling him with a new confidence unlike any that he'd ever felt before.

He stood there, glaring at the Sentinels, as if daring them to come. And as if accepting Bobby's silent challenge, the Sentinels charged forward, a dozen of them at once.

With just a gesture from Bobby's hand, half of the Sentinels suddenly flash froze and shattered. And with another gesture, he concentrated, causing ice to form, once again exploding out of the remaining Sentinels, tearing them to pieces.

"Oh my stars and garters," the Beast exclaimed as he stared in disbelief.

"Bobby," Nightcrawler gasped, teleporting in beside the Beast, his eyes also locked on Bobby and the shattered remains of the dozen Sentinels which had just been destroyed.

"Holy shit!" the Juggernaut echoed.

"Don't get distracted," Cyclops growled, struggling to stand on his injured leg. He glared up at the three remaining giant Sentinels, "We aren't finished yet."

"Then let's finish em," the Juggernaut snorted, already stomping forward, in spite of being injured.

The Beast nodded, "I concur..."

"Archangel and Northstar are alive and conscious," Emma pointed out as she staggered towards them, "I'll try getting them out..."

Bobby barely seemed aware of his battered team mates readying themselves for a final attack, not noticing the way Cyclops hobbled, relying on the Beast for support. He didn't notice that Nightcrawler's acrobatics were slow and clumsy compared to normal, nor that each teleportation seemed to take what little strength that remained. His attention was focused entirely on the giant metal nightmares which had made his, and countless other mutants lives miserable.

"Genocide machines," he muttered to himself, knowing that this wasn't inaccurate. The Sentinels had always been designed and built by humans for the sole purpose of 'containing' mutants, no matter the method.

With a grimace of determination, Bobby unleashed his cold upon one of the Sentinels...watching as ice began to form and spread over its outer shell. However, it seemed to take longer, and be much less effective than his previous attempts.

"Adaptation to cryonic attack nearly complete," the three Sentinels stated simultaneously.

Bobby didn't waste time cursing, only pushing more cold into it. The Sentinel froze...then suddenly exploded as a red beam of light, one of Cyclops' optic blasts hit it dead center. What was left of that single Sentinel was destroyed as the Juggernaut charged straight through its legs.

"Cryonic adaptation complete," the Sentinels stated, seemingly unbothered by the destruction of their 'brother'. "Sentinel units adapted to optical energy discharge. Mutant designate Cyclops poses no threat..."

"Damn," Cyclops growled, trying another blast at one of the Sentinels and scowling as it just bounced off.

"It appears that we will need to locate a new method of attack," the Beast exclaimed.

"I'll stick with the old fashioned kind of attack," the Juggernaut yelled out, charging straight for one of the two remaining Sentinels, though it obviously took him an effort of willpower to do so.

However, before the Juggernaut could get close to the Sentinels, they simultaneously released blasts of blue from their hands, which hit the Juggernaut and formed a glowing blue bubble around him. The same sort of bubble that surrounded Archangel and Northstar. The Juggernaut was not only trapped within, but apparently unconscious as well.

Everyone stood motionless for a moment, gasping in realization as they saw the Juggernaut go down. He was their most powerful member... The Sentinels had already taken out several of the team, neutralized the abilities of two more and the remaining X Men were tired, injured and not of much use against such powerful foes.

Bobby's eyes narrowed as he glared up at the Sentinels, a sneer beginning to form on his lips. They had adapted to his powers...become immune to the cold. Probably some sort of insulation field. Not that the how mattered, only that they had. Like Cyclops, they no longer considered him a threat. They thought that he was helpless...they thought that he was weak...

Then Bobby looked back at the others, the look's on their faces revealing what they thought. They thought he was out of the game too... They thought he was weak... They thought he was helpless... The very people that he had lived with...had fought alongside...and been family with didn't think that he could do it.

At that moment, the cold inside of Bobby deepened, the determination hardening even more. Somehow, he had to stop those Sentinels, immune to his cold or not. There was no doubt in Bobby's mind...he WAS going to stop them.

And as Bobby looked up at them, at their massive size, a thought occurred to him. There was an idea...passing fancy that had crossed his mind several times over the past months but had quickly been discounted as not being possible. He had refused to even give it much consideration before, but now he suddenly wondered if that was because he hadn't thought that it would work...or because in some part of him...he had been afraid that it would. However, Bobby wasn't afraid now. Not of those metal monsters...and certainly not of his own powers. Not anymore.

With Bobby's power, the largest and most visible and part was his ability to generate and shape ice. And when he transformed, his body actually BECAME ice. Living, animate ice. So why, he thought to himself, couldn't he combine the two?

There was a moment of dead silence as Bobby gathered his powers, reaching deep inside of himself for all that he had, for the full reaches of what he was capable of. Then he took a deep breath before concentrating, generating ice just as he normally did, though instead of pushing it outwards...shaping it onto some object or another, he focused that ice on himself...within his own icy body.

Suddenly, the living ice statue that was Bobby's body began to expand...to grow. It slowly grew larger, swelling as he created extra ice to add to his own mass. He grew, drawing gasps of stunned disbelief from his team mates as he grew taller, to 7 feet tall...to 10 feet tall...and more.

Even as Bobby's body grew, his power pushed out around him, causing the temperature to drop even lower. The sky grew frigid, filled with the raw cold of deepest winter, with an ever increasing level of snow beginning to fall.

With each passing moment, Bobby's size continued to increase, while he concentrated, pushing his powers beyond what he'd always believed to be his limits...pushing them into levels that he had only imagined until that moment. It was difficult...not in pushing his powers, but in controlling them, in not being overwhelmed by them.

Then it finally stopped, with the growth coming to an end and Bobby standing silently in front of the Sentinels, now equal in height to the giant robots. Icy winds whipped about his body, while cold radiated outwards, spreading what had nearly become a blizzard.

The X Men started to draw back, moving away from Bobby, unable to handle the intense cold which had turned the mansion lawn into a winter wasteland. Everything was covered with ice, even some of the X Men. Most shivered as they stepped away, gaping in awe at the ice titaness which now towered over them all.

Bobby slowly looked around himself, realizing just how small the mansion and everything else now seemed in comparison. His friends...his team mates, even the Juggernaut who used to tower over him now seemed absolutely tiny. There was a realization that he could kill them all without meaning to, by accidentally stepping on them. It was something of a relief to see that they were getting away from him.

Only a moment later though, Bobby's attention shifted back to the two remaining Sentinels, glaring at them each in turn. They longer towered over him, seeming absolutely titanic. Now...now he matched them in height, was able to meet them eye to eye.

Before the Sentinel's had a chance to do anything, he charged straight at the nearest one, punching it as hard as he could in the face. The metal face crumbled in a bit, though Bobby knew that this was mostly cosmetic damage, so he punched at it again. Though the Sentinels were big and powerful, they were also relatively slow. Unfortunately, they were also too tough to destroy with just a few punches.

"Is that BOBBY?" Nightcrawler gasped in shock, shivering at the same time, the sight in front of him distracting him from the cold. The Beast just shook his head, for one of the very rare times in his life, completely speechless.

Bobby scowled at the Sentinel in front of him, knowing that it would take more than just punches or kicks to take it...to take them down. And they had developed some sort of method to insulate them from direct attacks with his powers. But a faint, cold smile formed on Bobby's icy lips as he thought of a way to get through anyway.

Though Bobby was tempted to call out a quip such as "Eat Ice," he was too focused to waste time or energy doing that.

Instead, Bobby concentrated his will...and a massive barrage of icicles suddenly exploded from his hands, smashing into the Sentinel in front of him and tearing through it like a massive shotgun blast. There were a dozen holes in the Sentinel, which was staggering, obviously suffering from severe damage.

With a slight smile of satisfaction, Bobby knew that he'd done it. The Sentinels might have made themselves immune to being frozen, but they couldn't do much against other applications of his powers. Unfortunately, most of his powers were being used just to animate his titanic ice body, though there was still enough free for a few other uses. Hopefully enough. Still, Bobby eyed the damaged Sentinel warily, knowing that even damaged it was still dangerous.

Suddenly, a blast of energy from the other Sentinel, the one that he'd nearly forgotten about, hit his arm...disintegrating it almost entirely. Bobby grimaced in the pain, refusing to scream out no matter how much it hurt.

"It's just ice," Bobby told himself through gritted teeth, "Just ice..."

In spite of the pain, Bobby was able to gather his attention and focus his powers again...creating more ice. Ice sprung from the stub of his shoulder, quickly spreading out, reforming his arm. Within mere moments, his entire arm has regrown, appearing as though it had never been damaged at all. However, it had taken more energy than he'd wanted to spare at the moment.

But before Bobby could admire his handiwork, the undamaged Sentinel was firing another blast of energy from his hand. Without having time to think about it, Bobby grabbed the second Sentinel and shoved it into the path. There was a flash of energy and the giant robot that he'd already damaged collapsed to the ground, a massive hole melted through most of its torso.

"There is only one Sentinel remaining," the Beast told Cyclops, who just nodded, being able to see it quite well for himself.

"Oh my," Emma gasped, staring up at Bobby as she rejoined Cyclops, Nightcrawler and the Beast. "I couldn't free Northstar or Archangel by myself... Those force field bubbles are too strong..."

Bobby gave a cold stare at the sole remaining Sentinel, at the moment, seeing not the robotic monster of many mutants’ nightmares...but an obstacle. An obstacle to his freedom...to his security. He WAS going to destroy the Sentinel...he WAS going to prove that he was no one's victim. And he WAS going to do it NOW.

He was already in motion, simultaneously charging the Sentinel, punching at him...and forming more ice, shaping most of his right arm into a massive spike which he drove straight into the Sentinel's chest. Metal tore as the ice spike tore through its plating and into the Sentinel's insides.

However, Bobby was not through. Since he was already inside the Sentinel, past whatever protections that the robot had created against his powers, Bobby used his powers... He created more ice, spreading it from his spike and filling the Sentinel, pushing more and more ice into limited space. And in a matter of moments, the Sentinel's metal skin ruptured, tearing open as massive spikes of ice erupted from within.

Bobby gave a cold, cruel grin of satisfaction as he stared at the ruins of the Sentinel, knowing that he had done it...that he had overcome what his supposed friends had thought he couldn't. He had proven that he was no one's victim...not even that of the Sentinels.

For a long moment, Bobby stood motionless, looking down at the wreckage of the many Sentinels below him, out at the fields of ice and snow which had appeared as a result of his powers. He felt a strange calm satisfaction.

Ever since Bobby had traded bodies with Emma, he had been overwhelmed with fear, doubt, and confusion. But not now. Not anymore. Bobby knew that he was extremely unlikely to ever get his own body back, that he was going to be as he was now for the rest of his life. After several weeks with no sign of a return, he had already known that. But now...now he accepted it. He might not like being trapped in Emma's body...but he would survive it and move on.

Bobby took a deep breath, letting the calm coldness flow through him. He could live...would live, even as a woman. But he would not be the woman that they had all thought him to be, weak and helpless. He would never be weak and helpless again. NEVER. The cold determination remained, settling deeper into his very being, reaffirming his resolve.

"Did...did Bobby really just take out all of those Sentinels by himself?" Nightcrawler asked, staring up at the giant ice woman who was remaining motionless.

"Honestly," the Beast responded, "I am no longer truly positive... I have always known that Bobby's powers held a much greater potential than he ever used, yet I never expected anything such as this..."

Emma stared up at Bobby, then her body shimmered, reverting from the organic diamond into flesh and blood. She shivered as the shock of the cold hit her no longer insulated body. Yet she struggled to ignore that and concentrated her telepathic abilities...

"No..." Emma gasped out in shock a moment later.

"What is it?" Cyclops demanded through chattering teeth.

Not responding at first, Emma changed back to her diamond form for protection against the bitter cold. Only then did she look at Cyclops, and the others, a strange look on her face.

"That's not Bobby anymore," Emma started quietly, "Not the Bobby we know..." She paused in a very un-Emmalike uncertainty while the others stared at her in disbelief. "Bobby and I share a connection... Because of that, I was able to see a little of his thoughts..."

"He certainly looks like Bobby," Nightcrawler exclaimed, then paused in realization of what he had just said, "I mean like you... Sort of..."

Emma did not seem to hear Nightcrawler and continuing, almost sounding afraid, "I touched his mind...and it felt...cold. Hard. It did not feel like any Robert Drake that I know. He is changing...has already changed." Emma paused, still not tearing her eyes from the icy titaness before her, though the scowl and worried expression on her face both deepened. "I think," she said quietly, "that he is becoming in truth...or already has become what many of the students have been calling him. The Ice Queen."

"The Ice Queen?" the other X Men gasped as one, each of their voices filled with disbelief. However, none of them could resist staring up at Bobby and suddenly feeling extremely worried.

Bobby suddenly noticed something moving near his feet and realized that it was one of the badly damaged smaller Sentinels. It was crippled, probably no threat to anyone. Still, sneered and stepped on it, feeling the satisfying crunch beneath his foot which told him that now it truly was finished.

Then Bobby became more aware of his environment, at how small everything around him seemed and how immense he was. At the same time was the realization that he could not remain that size for much longer. Animating that much ice required a great deal of his power, power which he had already spent and no longer had to spare.

With that, Bobby pulled his consciousness together, withdrawing that and his power from the massive ice body which he inhabited. He concentrated his energy...and a moment later, a human sized ice woman stepped out of what had been his leg mere seconds earlier, leaving behind the inanimate form of an ice titaness.

There was a long moment where Bobby stood motionless in the shadow of the nearly identical, but giant ice statue of himself. He made no move to look up at it, his attention being elsewhere at the moment. The X Men were standing back, watching him. Bobby stared back, then slowly started to walk towards them.

Bobby scowled as he moved closer to his 'friends', seeing the looks on their faces. They knew... He remembered now that Cain had blabbed and told them all about what had happened with Chalk. However, Bobby didn't waste any energy getting angry. Instead, he just stared at them with an icy calmness.

A thousand thoughts ran through Bobby's mind, along with the realization that things would never be the same again. Even if he could get his own body back, things would never return to the way they had been. That life had been shattered with the events of the past few weeks...and his friend's betrayal. For that was what he saw it as...not a physical betrayal, but a betrayal of his trust...of their friendship.

At the same time, Bobby knew that HE could never be the same again either. Even in such a short time, he had been through too much. No matter how much he tried, even if by some miracle he regained his original body, he could never be the old Bobby Drake again. In fact, he thought, maybe they were right. Maybe Bobbie Frost would be more appropriate. And since he could obviously no longer be an Ice MAN, maybe he should take what they had already been calling him, and take control of his own life.

"Good job Bobby," Cyclops grunted, wincing as he stood up on his injured leg.

"Bobby?" the Beast asked hesitantly when Bobby didn't respond.

Emma stood silent, her skin glinting as the light reflected from her diamond body. She stared at Bobby before carefully asking, "Or is it the Ice Queen now?"

Bobby gave her an icy look but did not respond. He took a deep breath, carefully looking from one of his team mates to the next, imagining what they thought of him now that they knew of how Chalk had humiliated him. The very thought sent a knot into his stomach. He would not...could not bear knowing that every time they saw him, they would know of his shame and humiliation. They would know of how weak and helpless he had been. And Bobby would no longer tolerate being a victim...or even being thought of as such.

Finally, Bobby announced, "I'm leaving."

He hadn't even been certain of that decision until he had said it. But it felt right. The school no longer felt like a safe haven, no longer felt like home. It was time to look for something else... What, Bobby didn't know just yet...but he would. And he wasn't going to find it there.

"What?" Cyclops asked in surprise.

"I am leaving," Bobby repeated, this time with more force. "I need some time by myself." With that, Bobby turned and started walking away, using his powers once again to increase the cold, to make the snow fall harder about him until the other X Men could barely even make him out. Then, when they could no longer see him, Bobby yelled to them, "Don't look for me..."

Bobby paused only long enough to glance back at the X Men...at the mansion which had been his home off and on for so long. Perhaps some day he would be back, but for the moment, his destiny was somewhere else.

And with that, Bobby purposely turned away from the school and those he was leaving behind, then began creating an ice slide, the same method of transportation that he had been using for years. Seconds later, Bobby was quickly moving away from the school grounds, using a new trick that he had just thought of to disintegrate the slide behind him to make it more difficult to follow.

The X Men stared in into the snow in stunned disbelief, so shocked that they almost didn't notice the bitter cold. Finally, it was the Beast who broke the silence with a whisper of, "Oh my..."

Cyclops scowled, forcing himself to remain in control and focused on the business at hand. "We need to free the others..."

"Stasis field bubbles," the Beast told him absently, "designed for incapacitating and capturing of mutants rather than killing them." Then he shrugged, "I believe that the fields will wear down before long. All we need do is remain patient..."

"But what about BOBBY?" Nightcrawler demanded, wrapping his tail around his leg to try keeping it warm.

"I don't know," Cyclops admitted reluctantly, still trying to absorb all that had just occurred.

Just then, the mansion door opened and out stepped Professor Xavier, who paused, wincing as the cold hit him but making no move to return to the warmth inside. He scowled, silently surveying the scattered wreckage of Sentinels spread over the school grounds.

Finally, the professor looked at the X Men announced, "This is most disturbing..."

"Indeed," the Beast responded with a deep frown, "Bobby has decided to depart our ranks..."

"I know," Xavier told him, looking more worried. He looked in the direction where the Juggernaut was still being held in the stasis sphere before continuing with an even deeper frown, "Just before the Sentinels attacked, I discovered what has been troubling Bobby." He paused before quietly adding, "It is worse than I had expected..."

The X Men in front of Xavier frowned, looking at him curiously and awaiting an explanation. An explanation which was not to come as he had gone into a thoughtful silence.

"We can find him with Cerebra," Cyclops pointed out grimly.

"NO," Emma exclaimed. As the other's looked at her in surprise, she explained, "In his current mindset, that is the last thing that we should do. If we were to follow Bobby now, he could very well decide that we were hostile..."

Nightcrawler blinked, "But..."

"I fear that Emma is correct," the professor interrupted. He let out a sigh, "To follow Bobby now might very well make matters worse. Bobby left us for a reason. He wishes to resolve some issues by himself, and at the moment, the best thing that we can do is respect his wishes."

"But...," Nightcrawler started to protest.

"He wants to be alone," Emma snapped. "Trust me...you do not want to push him right now..." She glared at him, the look of experience in her eyes.

Xavier frowned, suddenly looking tired. "Bobby will return to us when he is ready." Though he didn't say it, they could all hear the silent 'if' in that statement. "Until then...I can only hope that he finds what it is that he needs..."

After a few seconds of silence, they nodded their reluctant agreement. They were each reluctant to just let Bobby go but they respected the professor and knew that he was probably right. And with that, they turned to deal with the business that was still at hand, freeing their teammates from the stasis bubbles which they were still trapped within.

But as the others left, Emma Frost remained where she was, staring into the snowy distance, a worried frown upon her face. She knew something of what Bobby felt and what could happen if he remained that way. Emma had once been there herself and knew from personal experience.

"I hope that you are right," Emma muttered as she considered what Xavier had said about Bobby returning. If not... "Beware the world...for the Ice Queen cometh..."

THE END



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