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Jan 11 2018, 04:01 PM
Nearly a month had come and gone since Calvin had last seen Chuck. After what happened at the Ty Warner Penthouse she had made it clear that she needed some time to sort herself out, and Cal had agreed to that. Since the 26th of January though, Calvin had only heard from Chuck once after she had taken care of her family business. That had brought him great relief, feeling like a painful chapter in his life had finally come to a close, but the fact that he had been told over the phone instead of in person and that Chuck had been to the point and more or less all business had not sat right with him. Had he known how long it would take for them to actually meet in person again, Cal probably wouldn't have agreed for them to go their separate ways that evening at Berto's. Even with what had happened then, he still considered her to be his friend. His best friend even, if Reece was removed from the equation because she was more like a little sister to him. He missed having her around, felt guilty about not just going "Fuck it" and looking her up on his own accord sooner, but on the 20th of February he decided to do just that and go to see her wherever it was she was staying currently.

All that Chuck got in the way of prior notice that Cal would be visiting was a brief text asking her where she was staying at the moment. Seconds after she had informed him that she was currently at her place in Brooklyn, there was a knock on the door followed by a familiar voice calling out. "Chuck? It's me, Calvin." There was a brief pause before he added, "Is this a good time? I figured it was about time we talked." Asking if this was a good time for her would probably have been a good thing to do before he came over, but making decisions first and considering them more carefully later was what Calvin did quite often. That he now possessed superhuman speed allowing him to break the speed of sound several times over was not helpful.

"Hey," he greeted her with a warm smile once the door was opened. "Sorry for just showing up on you doorstep like this. Someone left the door open downstairs." They had in fact not, unless you counted letting it fall shut normally and having it intercepted by a speedster before it could as being left open. "If this is not a good time, I can come back later?" It wasn't as if he was strapped for time these days, living the ever so difficult life of being a billionaire's boyfriend with everything he could wish for provided for him. His days were filled with his art, learning Portuguese as a silly little surprise for Berto, cooking elaborate multi-course dishes that would have done his mother proud, and spending most of the rest of his time in his lover's arms.

Life was a struggle.

"So, how have you been?" Cal wondered once Chuck had invited him into her apartment. "You know, since..." Since murdering your dad was not the kind of thing that Cal could actually manage to get past his lips, but it wouldn't be hard for Chuck to know that's what he was talking about. "I heard you left the Brotherhood too," he managed to get in before Chuck had a chance to speak. It seemed prudent to just get that out of the way, and try not to seem too pleased about it. The smile on his face betrayed him, though. "Reece can be a gossip," he explained to her, shrugging lightly. "I'm glad that you got that sorted. Both of those things." Now she could actually get her life on track, just like he had been trying to, and if she needed or wanted him to, he'd offer her any help he could.

Notion
Jan 7 2018, 06:20 PM
Making his way down Broome Street on his way from the Gourmet Garage to the condo he had been sharing with Roberto on Mercer Street, two bags of groceries in his arms, Calvin spoke quietly to himself in Portuguese. It was practice, repeating some of the things he had learned during his lessons earlier that day, lessons he had decided to take because he wanted to be able to converse with the man with whom he had somehow found himself sharing his life in his native tongue. Berto's English was great, he was perfectly fluent, but Calvin knew that it was not his first language, and was it not in his very nature to adapt? That he was already capable enough in Spanish gave him a solid foundation to try and learn Portuguese too, even though the languages were not as similar as some people thought, so he didn't see why he wouldn't make the effort.

Part of Calvin remained unsure about the situation he had found himself in, though it was usually smothered by how content being with Beto left him. He wasn't sure if this was still him, if he was staying true to himself. He had only known Berto for a month, a month that had been very turbulent to say the least, and yet he was sharing a living space with the man, a condo that Calvin had actually helped pick - but of course not pay for - after the decision had been made (for them, mostly) to leave the Ty Warner Penthouse and Berto had made it known not to want to return to his old place. They shared a bed, they prepared meals for one another, and they shared their daily experiences with each other while cuddled up on the couch in front of the television watching those telenovelas that Berto enjoyed so much. It made Calvin feel so domesticated, so stuck in one place and with one single person when for almost six years he'd not had a place he considered home and had no one but himself to rely on. That left Calvin feeling like he had begun to live a life that wasn't quite his own, but that was to be expected from the moment he decided to step away from the way his life had been. He didn't mind it. Hell, he actually kind of loved it, but it did make him restless at times, like he needed more adventure in his life. Purpose perhaps, too, like what he had intended to pursue (but hadn't end up finding) when he joined the Brotherhood. But that would come again, Calvin was sure of it, so for now he was just content on living a life he had never imagined for himself but enjoyed nonetheless.

Cutting across the street and into the alley that ran behind the building he was living in, Cal was unaware that he was actually walking right into something that could have the potential to provide some of the adventure he was looking for. The first hint of it came when Calvin suddenly became aware of the presence of a nearby mutant, one he would have noticed earlier had he not been preoccupied with balancing his bags of groceries and repeating Portuguese possessive pronouns to himself in an effort to actually be able to remember them without looking them up. Then came the sensations, both the unusual tingling on his skin and the sudden shift in his perception as he, curious about other people's mutations as he always was, mimicked it. Calvin knew what the ability he had copied was, that was one of the benefits of his own mutation, yet he still stopped in his tracks and stood there gaping like a tall idiot at how pretty it all looked, distracted and confused by the sudden presence of emotions that weren't his own. He didn't even immediately notice the person that the colourful strings belonged to, the person whose emotional state they were connected to.

The grocery bags slipped from Calvin's arms as he reached towards one of the strings and gave it a slight tug, a smile spreading across his lips as it changed colours to become brighter, but at the same time his innate awareness of how other mutant powers worked told him that he shouldn't just be doing such a thing. The differently coloured strings weren't toys, they represented someone's emotions, and as someone who had spent the last two months in possession of powerful telepathic abilities, Calvin had learned not to abuse such a thing even though those psychic abilities were now gone.

"What? Sorry, I didn't notice you with all those colours" Calvin spoke up when he managed to divert his attention away from the colourful strings enough to acknowledge the person they belonged to. Not that what he said would likely make a whole lot of sense. "Is this you? The strings?" Again, not the most sensible sounding of questions, but while Calvin could usually pinpoint a mutant from about half a mile away, it was a lot more complicated when that mutant's empathic powers were throwing a wrench into his ability to sense anything but the emotions. Just because Cal knew how the powers worked didn't mean he was immediately ready for an experience like this. That he'd actually managed words instead of just gawking awkwardly at all of the colours was already quite an accomplishment.

Sensate
Dec 7 2017, 05:14 PM
It had been a turbulent week, not just for Calvin but for the man sitting across the table from him as well. They had only really gotten to know each other two weeks ago, but to Cal it already felt like they had gone through half a lifetime of ups and downs over such a short period of time. Since the last time, during a rather unfortunate encounter involving his friend Chuck, they seemed to have settled somewhere in between, which Calvin appreciated a lot. It was just... pleasant, and after everything that had happened that was not a bad place to be at. There were still some things that needed to be sorted out, mostly on Berto's part, but they were getting there. Right now they were just sat together at the dining table, enjoying the brunch brought up by room service, which had Calvin feeling very content. They weren't passionately tumbling into anything, neither of them had any cause to get worked up emotionally, things were just... normal. Calvin found that he quite liked just normal.

So of course that wasn't going to last.

Calvin's brow creased into a frown as he noticed a certain chill in the air, one that had come out of nowhere and felt a bit unnatural. Without having Berto's powers at his disposal, instead having gone back to keeping one of his options open, the fact that it had suddenly gotten colder in the penthouse was easily noticeable. Berto, who wasn't susceptible to temperatures in the same way, didn't seem to have caught on yet. Of course, given what had happened in that very same penthouse before, Calvin had to wonder...

"Berto?" Calvin spoke up quietly, hazel eyes carefully regarding his love. "This isn't you, is it?" For a brief moment Calvin simply sat there in silence, his eyes shifting sideways when he realised that Berto had no idea what he was talking about. "The temperature," Calvin explained, "it's getting a bit cold in here. I thought maybe you..." He didn't want to accuse Berto of anything here, but the man did not exactly have a solid grasp on the thermokinetic aspect of his mutant powers. Cal figured if he just brought it up Berto would smile that wonderful smile of his, apologise and set things right again. But if he wasn't responsible...

"It can't be..." Calvin let out at a near whisper, realising that Beto was not the only other mutant he sensed nearby. There was someone else there, someone who by all rights Calvin shouldn't be able to sense, but despite not always recognising the mutant signatures his powers latched onto, actually latching onto it and mimicking the mutant's power left absolutely no doubt as to who was responsible for the sudden decrease in temperature.

"Berto, you... I think you need to get out of here." Calvin got up from his chair, hazel eyes turned towards his hands as a layer of ice spread across his skin. If Berto hadn't already caught on to who was coming for a visit, that would make it more than evident. "Please, just go," Calvin urged Berto, "I'll try and slow him down." For nearly two weeks now, Calvin had felt like Berto needed to face the consequences of his actions if he were to ever move on, and had even brought it up before, but this was not exactly what he'd had in mind.

Once more Calvin tried to urge Berto to leave, his senses telling him something bad was coming. He could practically feel the anger. "Berto, just--" was all that Calvin managed to get out though, before a pillar of ice suddenly grew from underneath him and pushed him into the air, quickly trapping him up against the ceiling of the penthouse apartment. Calvin struggled to break free, but couldn't find the leverage to muster much strength, and the borrowed cryokinetic powers he had at his disposal didn't quite measure up enough to the man they'd come from to do anything about the ice.
Dec 1 2017, 06:14 PM
It had been a turbulent few weeks for Calvin Rankin. Everything that had happened with Berto, the encounter with Merry, meeting up with Jean, that whole thing with Chuck... and to top it all off, he had come to the decision to leave the Brotherhood. Cal still stood by his decision, feeling like that was what he needed to start sorting out his life, but if he thought it meant he would stop running into trouble, he would be wrong. He seemed to have a nose for that sort of thing, even if it wasn't his own trouble he would just stumble onto someone else's.

Last night that trouble had belonged to none other than Alexei Felidae, his former classmate and Brotherhood teammate known as Savage, Anna's slightly less crazy twin brother. Or... younger brother, rather, as the Alexei Calvin had come across was almost exactly what he remembered him as from before the first time he left the school, now almost five years ago. Calvin had no idea how that had happened, mainly because Alexei didn't and had only offered him a shrug instead of an explanation. Apparently paying attention when someone at the school had explained to him what happened had been too much to ask for.

Alexei had also been a bit distracted by being stabbed a little, at least that was a more reasonable excuse. It could have been much worse than that though, had Calvin not happened across him outside of a club in the neighbourhood he had been staying in. Had he been anyone else, Calvin would probably have missed the commotion in the alley, but his own mutation had first picked up on Alexei's presence before his telepathic abilities had taken note of the distress that hung in the air. Alexei's, the two men he had severely wounded, and that of the four still left standing. Had their number been any fewer than six, there likely wouldn't have been any trouble, except if you were keeping score of how many ignorant humans got themselves killed by biting off more than they could chew. Cal had cut back on the whole killing thing, but if a couple of racists decided to mess with a mutant and found themselves outmatched... well, Calvin wouldn't be too mournful.

Luckily for the four remaining men, Calvin was merciful. He was trying to be a better Calvin after all, the Calvin from a month ago would likely just have killed or severely wounded them, but current Cal had simply used his telekinesis to toss the lot of them away from Alexei before making it very clear that they would be better off accepting their loss and getting the hell out of there.

Alexei's wounds had, thankfully, not been too bad, meaning they wouldn't have to go through that ever awkward process of trying to find medical care without answering too many questions. In the current climate, more so than before, violence involving mutants and humans was not going to go over well. Who was going to buy that the mutants were the wronged party when the media was doing such a great job of casting them as the bad guys? Calvin had taken Alexei back to the loft that Chuck had been so kind to allow him to stay in while he sorted himself out, had done the best he could to patch the kid up a little, then given him the bed to sleep in while he took the couch. It wasn't exactly suited for a six foot three tall guy like Calvin to sleep in, but after two and a half years of sleeping on the floor of a cell it had become rather easy to find comfort.

Rest, however, never came too easily to Calvin, not when he still struggled to leave what had happened to him in Utah behind. Nightmares were frequent, and more often than not he'd end up startling awake in the middle of the night in a cold sweat, unable to go back to sleep again. He had found someone who helped there in Roberto, with the man offering him the kind of comfort when they shared a bed that made sleep come more easily to him, but he wasn't there with him all the time. Calvin would have gone to visit him that night, but he could hardly drag a bloody Alexei along with him, and didn't feel comfortable leaving the kid on his own. He would figure out what to do with Alexei the next morning, whether he'd be better off at the school with Jean and Merry or at Station M with Anna... though after what Emma had done for him, he'd need Reece to come pick the guy up, as Cal no longer remembered where the Brotherhood were based.

Having settled for a restless night away from Roberto, Calvin was easily stirred from his slumber around 2 am. Something was wrong. He didn't immediately know what it was, but his various senses were acute enough to pick up on something being off. There were thoughts his telepathy was picking up on, too many for the building the loft was in, especially this late at night. Worse, there was something off about them, like his telepathy couldn't quite get a solid hold on them, something that could only be the case when dealing with people who were either highly trained or in possession of some very advanced gear.

:: Alexei :: Calvin sent to the other occupant of the loft, assuming the younger man was still asleep. :: Something's wrong. You need to be ready to get out of here. :: Furrowing his brow slightly, Calvin tilted his head as he focused on what was happening out in the hallway. Footsteps, light but still noticeable, easier to mask than thoughts but still noticeable enough for someone with enhanced senses. :: Alex, there's people right-- :: Well, Calvin would have told Alex they were right outside, but that would have been a lie as soon as they broke down the door and interrupted Calvin's concentration enough that his telepathic message was cut short. Half a dozen of men, clad in high quality body armor and carrying weapons Calvin did not like the look of, quickly entered the loft and wasted no time to open fire.

Rolling off the couch to dodge their initial assault of advanced weaponry, Calvin reached for the metallic leg of the nearby table and assimilated its properties, increasing both his strength and durability five-fold. He wasn't sure if it would be enough to resist the kind of weapons these guys were packing, but it could help. Calvin was pretty sure he knew these guys, he realised. Not specifically these men, but he had encountered a group much like them years ago when he had been captured and imprisoned in Utah. If these were the same people that meant that they were government agents, and this lot in particularly was not the type you'd want to fuck with. But Calvin was not the same man he had been then, his "supervisors" in Utah had made sure of that, and he had one trick up his sleeve that the government had no way of knowing about. Without warning, the couch was lifted slightly off the floor, then sent flying towards the nearest assailant. If Calvin could just distract these idiots long enough, Alexei should have the opportunity to slip away unnoticed.
Nov 22 2017, 04:32 PM
It had been a month since Calvin first joined the Brotherhood, and just as long since doubts had first started creeping into his mind. His attachment to Xavier's and some of the people who still called the school home had been the cause of it then, with Cal struggling to leave them behind despite having convinced himself that he was doing the right thing. Weeks later he still thought he had done the right thing by leaving, because Xavier's ideals did not line up with his own, but joining the Brotherhood had not worked out for him the way he had expected. Calvin had wanted a sense of purpose, or rather find somewhere that aligned with the sense of purpose he already had. He thought the Brotherhood was that somewhere, but if it was why had his doubts never gone away?

The line it had drawn between himself and people he cared about was one of the main reasons. Jean, Merry... even Berto, though the man was no longer at Xavier's, was an X-Man at heart, and his newfound affiliation had put strain on his relationship with the former two, and would no doubt end up putting strain on whatever it was he had with Berto as well. Not being able to live his life how he wanted, with the people he wanted, would have been enough of a reason to seriously reconsider his choice, but that wasn't even half of it.

The Brotherhood was part of the issue as well. People like Reece, Chuck, Elle and Rat, he got on just fine with, extremely well in the case of the former two, but the rest of them? Cal barely even knew most of them and couldn't stand some of the others. They weren't there to fight for mutant rights, they were terrorists and it had taken Calvin far too long to make that distinction, then just about as long to decide he wanted no part of that. Suvik had even murdered Merry, one of the few people Cal could consider a friend before he fucked things up (again), and no one seemed to have a particular problem with that. Calvin did not want to stand side by side with a man capable of something like that, even if it had taken him far too long to come to that decision. Having it slapped in his face by Merry again the week before had certainly helped there.

Sure, Calvin had taken lives before, but never that of another mutant and certainly never of anyone near as good as Merry. The people at the facility, Calloway... they had been absolute filth with no regard for mutant lives, and somehow even that troubled Calvin on some level. Talking to Chuck the Friday before had served to really make Cal think about that, how he didn't want to be the kind of person for whom murder was such an easy solution, and the Brotherhood felt like the kind of environment that would only foster the part of him that he was trying to improve.

Because in the end, that's what this was all about: making a better Calvin, to just go out into the world and get himself back to himself. It had been nearly eight years since he had truly been at a point where he was content with himself, something that he had become very much aware of the previous week when he had actually been happy for the first time in ages. The question the man had asked him then, about what Calvin did with his time had made the mimic realise that nothing he was doing actually bringing him much contentedness. Solving Marissa's murder with Chuck had done that, but he didn't need to be with the Brotherhood to help others. He felt he would be better off finding what made him happy, how he could do his part in the world in a way that fit with him, without trying to conform to anyone else's ideals unless he was certain they aligned with his own. That meant that, despite leaving the Brotherhood, Calvin had no intention of returning to Xavier's either. He had been happy there once, a long time ago, but that wasn't the place for him any longer.

The cracks had been there, Merry had shattered him completely when that... whatever spoke in her voice, then Jean had done her part when Calvin had whisked her off to Italy because he needed someone to talk to. Berto's presence in his life had only served as a constant reminder how he wanted to be a better person, and so Calvin had finally decided to take that step and leave the Brotherhood. Of course that was easier said than done. Station M's location was not exactly common knowledge, and the last thing Cal wanted was having the Brotherhood on his back constantly because he could compromise them. The only reliable way he could think of to make that a non-issue was to scrub every last memory of the place from his mind. Considering he was the only telepath amongst the Brotherhood even remotely capable of memory alteration on that level though, that provided a bit of an issue. Calvin would have to ask Elle if she knew of anyone who could help there when he went to say his goodbyes. He'd considered asking Jean, but giving her access to the knowledge of where the Brotherhood was holed up did not sound like the best idea. Elle was good at finding people, she had found him after all, so hopefully she would be able to help him out one last time.

Before he would actually tell anyone else though, Calvin knew he had to talk to Blink about it first. The girl had been elated when he had first joined the Brotherhood, making it so Cal loathed the idea of telling her he was leaving, but she deserved to know. She was like a baby sister to him, and one of the few Brotherhood members he actually gave a damn about, and Cal was not going to repeat the mistake of saying goodbye to those he cared about. The first step towards Cal becoming a better Cal would be to not repeat the mistakes from his past again... and again. He would have to say goodbye to a few others too, but Reece came before any of them.

Cal had already packed what little belongings he had before he even went to see Reece, as a way of finalising his decision before he even told anyone. And possibly to delay having to share something with Reece that she wouldn't want to hear just a little bit. Aside from a few clothes and his art supplies Calvin didn't actually own anything after the people in Utah had taken everything from him, so it didn't delay it for long, and soon Cal found himself knocking on the door to Reece's quarters.

"Heya Reece," Cal greeted his friend as he entered, speaking with a kind of forced cheerfulness that he doubted had her fooled for even a moment. "Do you have a minute to talk? There's something I need to tell you." If he could find the right words or utter them once he did, because he felt a lump in his throat now that he saw the girl's face. "I--" Calvin started as he sat down next to Reece on her bed, faltering straight out of the gate. This could take a while. "I'm leaving." Or it could just take no time at all, that was also an option.

Heaving a heavy sigh, Cal offered Reece a bit more than just those three words. "I've thought about this for some time now, and I don't think being part of the Brotherhood is right for me." he explained. "I need to sort myself out. I've been a mess or a prisoner for the past seven years, and I feel like I never took the proper time to figure myself out once those things weren't a problem anymore." Cal paused for a brief moment, before adding "That's not going to happen for me here. I still want to stand up for our people, to protect them from going through the same thing we did like I said I would, but I don't think this is the place for me to do that. I want to be a better, happier person, and as long as I stay here I'm afraid all I will end up as is miserable."
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