Quinn paced back and forth in the cafeteria, furious that no one was returning from their post to report. She thought briefly about taking Sabertooth out with her to strangle them one by one. If they were sleeping out there... She paused, and regained her composure. Killing them would be gratifying, yes, but not very productive. Still, she was done waiting. Sabertooth followed behind her as she went out into the darkness of the courtyard.

Sabertooth looked around, his eyes much more useful in the dark than her own, revealing that the yard was empty in all directions. Where the hell was everyone? If they weren’t dead when she found them, they were going to wish that they were.

As if in answer to her silent threat, she heard snow crunching beneath a pair of feet. The sound was coming from behind her, and when she turned around she saw Birdie approaching.

“Where the hell have you been?” Quinn screamed at her. “You were supposed to come in an hour ago!”

Birdie didn’t answer, just cocked her head inquisitively. Quinn looked down and saw the light from the cafeteria catch something metal in her hands, a knife. Had she been to the kitchen without passing them in the cafeteria? Not likely. Sabertooth let out a growl and stepped forward, but when Birdie turned to face him something odd happened-- her face began to change shape.

Quinn backed away slowly as Birdie disappeared and was replaced by Tinct, then Cache, then Camfluxxor, and then a hundred other faces she didn’t recognize all flashing across this creatures body like channels on a broken television set. She watched as the figure slipped temporarily into it’s natural form. The deep blue skin, the piercing yellow eyes, glowing ever so slightly in the shadow that enveloped them. Mystique.

“I know you,” the woman spoke, her voice hoarse and grating.

Sabertooth watched in horror as Mystique shifted from one form to another, her powers seemingly out of her control. They had gotten to her then. Gotten in her head, and filled it with insanity. Quinn’s eyes never left the knife that she was holding, and she tugged insistently on his arm.

“Do something!” she hissed. He didn’t move. “She’s not who you think she is, she’s one of them now. A hound. She’ll kill us both, if you don’t do something!”

Sabertooth backed away as Mystique began to walk towards them, her arm stretched out with the blade of the knife pointing down and away from her body. Of all the people he’s met in his lifetime, she had been the only one who had ever treated him like a man, and not an animal. Not even Erik had afforded him that. To her, he was always an equal, part of the same unfortunate existence. When they had found the body on the highway, Rogue's body, he knew that it had been Mystique who had killed her. He didn't know how, but he knew, and every action after had been an atempt to prevent this very confrontation. But it had happened, she was here, and he couldn't do it, he couldn't kill her.

“You have to,” Quinn screamed. “I wont. You have no choice! I’m not your slave. Do it, protect us! NO! You will!"

Quinn ran out towards Mystique, and the woman ducked back into a crouch before lunging at the girl with the knife. She never made contact, as Sabertooth cuffed the changeling across the head with a powerful blow. Mystique crashed to the ground, shaking her head out.

It only took a few moments before she rose to her feet again, still changing shape so quickly that it was difficult to pin down any one image before it was washed over with another.

Sabertooth stood fast between Mystique and her prey. When she charged, knife in hand, he braced himself for the frontal attack, but instead she slid feet first through the snow-- suddenly behind him, she sunk the dagger deep into his back.

He roared in pain, and turned, grabbing her head in both hands and lifting her by the neck. Her eyes flashed, warm and yellow, before he threw her hard into the nearby building. She hit it head first with a loud crack, and then stopped moving.

Quinn pulled the dagger from his back, and the wound bled generously. They heard the sound of a gas engine, and then were shocked to see Marcus pull up in a military transport.

“This was sitting out beyond the south wall,” he called to them from the driver seat. The headlights cut fiercely through the cold air. “Think it's time to get the hell out of here?”

“Yes!” Quinn agreed. The two of them jumped into the back of the truck, and were greeted by the remaining mutants. She noticed that there were a few less then they had come in with, but was too preoccupied to care.

Sabertooth was bleeding, and when she tried to take the detention collar off to let his natural healing take over, he snarled like a feral creature, swatting her hand away viciously. As long as the collar was on, the wound wouldn't heal, but she couldn't force it, he had to want to take it off. The truck had several blankets in the back, and she took one, pressing it to the wound and keeping pressure on it.

“Where are we going?” Marcus asked from the front cab.

"I don't care, just drive!" Quinn answered, and as they pulled away, she looked back to where Mystique had fallen, but she wasn't there. All that remained was a dark impression in the snow.