Note: Written for , because I loved John in X2 and found some unexpected John/Marie bunnies...

There had always been a flame at the core of John's being, burning red, yearning to break free and set the world on fire.

At Xavier's John had learned to control the flame, until it was hardly more than a flicker of heat. He had also found friendship -- and love. His red glow was dimmed by the blue of ice and the creamy tone of untouchable skin.

But now, looking at the picture of a happy family, while his love was kissing his best friend, the flame soared up again, coloring John's world a fiery red. Setting him on fire.