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The Savage Land

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Shadowcat

X-Men Blue

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Mar 8 2018, 01:06 PM
“What’s with the Brotherhood and frickin’ high school dropouts?”

The little dragon stirred in her lap. He lifted his head to look at her, then followed her gaze across the clearing. Off in the distance, a helmeted woman crossed the island. He must not have found it very interesting, because he laid right back down. Or maybe he was just enjoying the warmth of the sun and the scratch behind his horns.

“Her name’s Mack, by the way,” Kitty insisted. “Whatever she tries to tell you, her name is Mack.

A moment passed as they just sat in the breeze. Her new friend was surprisingly easy to talk to, even if he never talked back. She’d quickly made a habit of this.

“You know, they carved a number in my zayde, too,” she softly admitted. “Right here.” Lockheed’s massage found a brief interruption as she ran a finger along her own forearm instead, tracing a number she knew by heart. Man, she missed him. When she spoke again, there was an ache in her voice. “Calling him that would have been about the most hateful thing I could have done to him.”

There was another quiet moment, lost in her memories before the dragon decided it was time for rubs again. He squirmed up under her hand, none too subtle about what he was after. Kitty obliged.

“He survived, though,” she proudly reported. “He took his life back. But that girl…” Here, her tone took a darker shade. “Look, I get that she went through an absolute nightmare. I get it. I was there for the rescue, and even that was unthinkable, but God…” Her eyes glowered once last time before the figure disappeared from sight.

“It’s like she’d just letting them get away with it...”

[Kingtide]
Mar 6 2018, 08:57 PM
Two words didn’t seem like much of a plan, especially not these two. They weren’t exactly new. They were simple and ordinary, and surely he’d heard them before. In fact, he’d already heard them from her. But despite that, and even at barely five letters between them, that’s where she started.

“Hi, Ben!”

Between classes, in the dining hall, always two words and a smile.

“Hi, Ben!”

Not that this was anything Kitty had avoided before, but now she made it a habit. Sometimes they spoke more, sometimes not. In the quieter passings, it usually came with a hug. But no matter what, he didn’t enter her sight without a greeting. Period. Because it wasn’t the words that were important, it was the message.

He wasn’t going unseen, and he hadn’t gone unheard.

That train ride had been a rough awakening. God, it depressed her still. That poor kid had slipped through the cracks, and they’d ALL missed it. For all the questions in her head, though, she didn’t pry, not in such a public forum. Unfortunately, idle banter had no longer felt appropriate either, so she’d simply sat beside him, offering a quiet company so he wouldn’t have to be alone. By the time his stop came, Kitty was ready to follow him, but he politely declined. So in the end, he’d gone, but not without a warm embrace and a reaffirmation of the promise that they’d talk later, in a more appropriate setting.

Admittedly, later should have come sooner, but there’d been evil ninjas in a mystical city, a mother’s betrayal, an out-of-time adventure in an impossible land, a home to repair, and every technological doodad in the hizzy to wipe clean. But enough was enough; after a week or two without finding a natural chance to talk, Kitty made her own. She forced her schedule clear for an hour and made Ben the most important thing on her calendar. When the time came, she and her little dragon friend were early. When Ben came, she smiled, warm and welcoming and bright.

“Hi, Ben!”

[Scarlet Spider | closed]
Mar 4 2018, 10:21 PM
A lot of things happened the moment any guest hit that front gate intercom. The cheerful greetings and simple questions were nothing out of the ordinary. “What brings you here today?” “Did you have an appointment?” They kept things normal, but more importantly, they kept the visitor in place.

While the conversation continued, the stationary vehicle and its occupants underwent a series of covert scans, designed for the safety of everyone involved. For the school itself, it was a basic measure in rooting out any ill intent, checking for weaponry or smuggled passengers. But it also kept the visitors themselves from harm, giving security a chance to collect and authorize their bioscans so they wouldn’t be blown to smithereens the second they passed the gate.

There was also the occasional light mind reading when availability allowed.

Fortunately, today’s arrivals did have an appointment. In fact, they’d been explicitly invited. The younger of the two, Alex Goya, had actually already visited before, as a guest of Merry’s. The shifter took a shine to the young creature-creator, for obvious reasons. More importantly, she saw a chance to help: New York in the winter was no place to let a child go homeless. Today, they’d be trying to make the case for a more permanent solution.

His Cajun company, meanwhile, was about as close to a current guardian as Alex had. Gambit genuinely did care for the little rascal, enough so that he’d already met one of today’s tour guides in his attempts to get the kids some books. Unfortunately, that had ended on a bit of a misunderstanding, though; today would be the first chance Kitty would have to clear that up, and frankly, she was relieved he’d agreed to come.

By the time the pair cleared the gate, they were allowed to pull up to the visitor parking right at the building entrance. There they’d find their tour guide trio already there on the front step ready to meet them.

“Hi, guys!” Kitty greeted warmly. “How was the drive? Find the place alright?” Since she’d already met each of today’s visitors -- on separate and unrelated incidents, funny enough -- the excitable extrovert had been assigned introductions. Naturally, she took the chance for hugs if she thought she could get away with them; if not, a simple handshake. It all depended on the moods of their guests.

“Alex! Welcome! Your little friend with you today?” Her hands grabbed an imaginary creature about the size of Buckbeak as she peeked around to try and spot the little griffin. Because he was the focus today, she

“Gambit! I’m glad you’re here.” Her tone turned more contrite as she greeted the older man, but no less friendly. “Listen, I’m sorry how things ended at the library,” she apologized. “I didn’t know who that guy was or why he was trying to pick a fight with you, so I was just trying to find a way to help you AND keep him from getting his way.” And that was the honest truth of it. “Oh, but I chewed him right out as soon as you left.” It turned out Guari had just been trying to help Alex, too, but making wild accusations against strangers and picking fights near Kitty’s students was not the way to do it.

“Anyway, let me introduce our company for the afternoon,” she segued, turning their attention to the two Xaverites waiting nearby. “Kaylee Mardis here is an alumna outta Alabama (say that three times fast!). She’s now in charge of helping the kids your age learn to control and improve their powers. And the big guy here, taller than me and Kaylee combined, is actually one of our current students, Nezhno Abidemi.” God, she hoped she’d pronounced that right. Luckily, their guests wouldn’t have to try. “You can just call him Nez. But don’t let the size fool you; he’s the most Gentle guy around.”

As for Kitty herself, officially she was there on security duty. Not that she was going to mention that to either visitor. And not that Kaylee and Nez couldn’t have swiftly handled any issue that came up. And not that she even expected anything to happen. But from the moment Betsy heard the name Gambit, she’d insisted. Whether that was because he was a talented thief or because... how had she put it? Oh. Right.

‘He's a smooth talking scoundrel who married my good friend and ran off- the rat.’

Probably best if that didn’t come up, either.

“So,” Kitty asked, giving her hands a clap. “Any questions before we get started? Any request on where we begin?”

[Alex Goya, Gambit, Mistral, Gentle | Menagerie, Guari Vincent, and Psylocke for mentions]
Feb 21 2018, 11:52 PM
“Oooooh, you frickin’ shmendrik! WHOSE PACK IS THAT?!”

If it belonged to one of these Brotherhoodlums, so help her God, that little twerp would never hear the end of this. Like there wasn’t enough tension in the air already, Kitty was sure those assholes were just looking for a reason to pick a fight. Well, she refused to give them one. At least… not as long as the kids were around. If only everyone had such common sense.

Whoever it belonged to, though, whether friend or foe, everything they had left in this godforsaken jungle had just been scattered to the wind. And now there was an irate little Jewish girl tearing across the clearing to give the culprit a good what for. Even before the volume, though, he seemed to have known she was coming; he snatched up a strap in his mouth and made his getaway into the underbrush, hoping to squirrel away and paw through his new treasure in peace.

Unfortunately, that bag was still open. As the infuriating dragon started urgently draggin’, he spilled more and more of its contents out onto the ground. On the plus side, it left a nice little trail to where he disappeared into the foliage. On the other, well, if he ended up starting a war here, that was little consolation.

“What is WRONG with you?!” Kitty chided as she hunted through the bushes. This would be so much easier if she phased, but then she wouldn’t be able to save any of this person’s belongings. So hard way it was, which did nothing to improve her mood.

“I swear to God, they’re gonna vote you off the island for this!”

[Guari Vincent, Alex Goya, Spider-man, open]
Feb 14 2018, 01:32 PM
There was one simple fact that every mansion resident soon came to understand: there was no good way into the city.

Actually… scratch that. They could teleport in a flash! Speed through the air! Run the distance in the blink of an eye! Well, some of them could, anyway: Roan, Sam, or Tommy. All Kitty Pryde could do was none of these things. Even if her powers offered her an impressive freedom of movement (and plenty of shortcuts), it did absolutely nothing to increase her actual long-distance speed.

So instead, the girl had to pick her poison. She could drive her little electric go-mobile, risking gridlocked traffic on the way and nowhere to park when she got there, or she could take the tried and true but crowded and sloooow path and ride the train. At least the latter did give her a freedom of focus, though. She could occupy her time with other things. And today, she still had work to do, so today, that’s where she went.

And she already regretted it.

“Waitwaitwaitwaitwait!” It didn’t. For whatever reason, her MetroCard hadn’t automatically replenished. She’d had to wait in line to add funds instead and now the train was departing without her. Well, just because she refused to skip the turnstile without paying did NOT mean she’d accept narrowly missing her ride after paying.

If Kitty couldn’t walk through those doors, then she’d just walk through them.

The girl did have to catch herself as the train lurched forward, grabbing at the nearest rail and praying she didn’t spill her coffee. She also had to return the dirty look she got from a couple girls in the corner, clearly unhappy she’d just openly used her powers. Ugh. As far as Kitty was concerned, if they didn’t want public displays, they shouldn’t have gone out in public.

Luckily, at the opposite end was all it took to improve her mood: a familiar face. It didn’t even matter that she didn’t actually know the kid all that well. Everyone at Xavier’s was family.

Besides, now he was stuck with her.

“Hey! Ben! Mind if I keep you company?” The boy received her brightest grin as she just slid in beside him anyway. Between taking off her scarf and fishing out her tablet, Kitty was clearly making herself comfortable already, too. “How you doing?” she asked. Where you off to today?”

[Scarlet Spider | closed]
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