ArchivedLogs:Army Recruitment

From X-Men: rEvolution
Army Recruitment
Dramatis Personae

Iolaus, Jackson, Jane

2013-02-21


Jane makes a job offer.

Location

<NYC> 303 {Holland} - Village Lofts- East Village


This apartment is cheerful, in its way -- bright and airy, its floor plan open and a plethora of windows providing it with an abundance of light. The tiny entrance hall opens into a living room, small, though its sparse furniture and lack of clutter give it a more open feel. The decor is subdued and minimalist; black and white is the dominant theme, with occasional splashes of deep crimson to offset the monochrome, though of late bright coloured sealife has made its way into being painted on the wall. The couch and armchair are upholstered in black corduroy, the low wide coffee table central is black wood and glass-topped, and a few large pillowy beanbags provide additional seating by the large windows that dominate the back wall. Towards the back, a couple of doors lead off into bedrooms and bathroom, and to the right, the kitchen's tile is separated from the living room's dark hardwood floors by black countertops. Above the bedroom to one side, there is higher space; a ladder climbs up to a lofted area looking down on the living room. Standing in front of the partition between living and cooking area is a large fish tank: one lone Betta, blood-red, swims regally among several species of black and silver fish. A hallway beyond the kitchen leads further into the apartment. Another bathroom stands just into the hall and the farthest door leads to the apartment's final bedroom, the door usually kept shut to hold in the acrid fumes of turpentine and paints from within.

It's early afternoon on Thursday, and Jackson is just coming back from class. He has his bulky black portfolio case slung against a hip, and a tired expression that doesn't match his brightly colourful attire. Dark jeans with a metallic silver sheen, a silver-studded black tank top layered over a bright purple fishnet shirt, hair vivid magenta and his nails blue chrome. His eyepatch is glittery, too, sparkling in black-trimmed purple, and when he sheds his shoes inside his apartment his socks are a brightly patterned mismatched set. He closes the door behind him, locks it securely, and slumps down on a beanbag, the air around him tinting itself dark shades of blue and green. It's at a slow delay that he drags himself back up, to go get his laptop and drawing tablet, opening up a tattoo design in progress -- a cactus with bright red flowers -- and start touching it up.

There is a rap on the door, first hard and close to pounding, a pause, then a more polite knock. A hushed admonishment can barely be heard through the door. Standing on the other side of it is two people, dressed very differently, yet both quite formal. One is Iolaus, dressed in a grey dress shirt and a black pair of pants with a warm smile. The other is Jane, dressed in a rather severe costume of a military-green pair of pants, a thick black utility belt, and a dress shirt, buttoned to the throat.

Jackson startles upright at the sudden knock, his picture abruptly growing a thick streak of red that, at least, is remedied with two quick taps of his stylus. He rubs his knuckles against his eyes, grimacing at the door a long moment. Pushing himself upright, he sets the tablet down beside his computer, sluggishly making his way across to the door. By the time he peeks through the viewhole and opens it, at least, he doesn't look sluggish; cheerful splash of shimmery makeup, healthier colour in his cheeks, a quick-bright smile on his lips. His tone, though, is somewhat confused, "Hi, sir! Miss. Um. How did you get --" He bites down absently at his lip ring. "-- my address? Er. I mean, hi. Can I -- help you?"

"Hello, Jackson." Iolaus says, with a bright smile. "May we come in?" he asks, politely. "I have something that I want to discuss with you." Jane, for all her curtness, gives Jax a brief nod of hello. She says nothing, immediately, though after a few moments, she gives a very gruff, "Jackson."

"Um --" His question unanswered, Jackson still mostly looks confused. There's a long moment where he stands, looking from Iolaus to Jane, but then steps back to wave them inside. "Um, yeah, sure, hi. Can I get you somethin'? Drink? Snack? Tea?"

Iolaus steps in, smiling. "No, I'm fine, thanks. I'm actually here to talk to you. Well..." his smile widens and quirks up at the edges. "I'm actually here escorting Jane, today." His eyes slide to the guard standing next to him. She is very... stiff, like someone inserted a steel rod into her spine. Possibly the Army. "I've seen you work, Jackson. The video of your performance the other night reached me, and it is... adequate." High praise.

"My performance?" Now Jax /definitely/ looks confused. He closes and locks the door behind them, slipping back across the living room towards the kitchen to -- just stand, somewhat at a loss, at the refusal of Drinks. "Seen me work?" He's eying Jane /skeptically/. One corner of his mouth twitches slightly. "You don't seem like you're real heavy into body mods, miss."

This comment gets a perplexed look. Jane pauses for a moment, and then presses on, as if Jax has not spoken at all. Iolaus, to his disservice, hides a smile behind his hand. "Your ability to react to dangerous situations is skilled. Clearly, you have received some training in it." It is not a question. "I have heard from Iolaus that you might be interested in persuing employment with us. You will need some more training, but I think that would be... agreeable."

"Employment?" Jax's head turns, looking at Iolaus with a perplexed look, as well. He leans back against the wall between the living room and the kitchen, arms crossing slowly across his chest. "I'm -- not looking for a job, miss," he says, carefully. "I've already got one. I've already got two. Pretty good at 'em, too. But, uh, if either of you are in the market for a tattoo --" He turns one hand upwards, his own bright coloured tattoos visible beneath the mesh of the fishnet.

Iolaus gives Jane a look and cuts in, smoothly. "We're interested in helping, Jackson. Tattooing is certainly an enjoyable profession, but I can't imagine it pays very well. The job we are looking to offer has significant amounts of benefits, as well as a good salary. I have the formal offer here," Iolaus says, taking an envelope out of his jacket and holding it out to Jax with a smile. "Please, at least, look it over before you say no." << If you're home, Hive, you told me Jax was looking for a job. Did you... not mean it? >>

The voice that cuts back sounds crankyish. Like maybe it Just Woke Up. << I said he needed a job, not that he was looking, >> is a bit brusque in Hive's typically hammery voice.

"It pays --" Jackson hesitates, and then shrugs, letting the sentence drop there. He reaches forward, taking the envelope to open it carefully and look inside. "I'm still confused. I ain't applied for no jobs."

Iolaus winces visibly as Hive 'talks' back to him. The offer is laid out in plain language, signed by Jane as well as someone named Maribeth who has written a little note by hand in far more informal language welcoming him to the Clinic and letting Jax know if there are any questions or concerns, to call her. She also included an smiley-face. Jane did not. The title of the job is "Bodyguard I", salaried at $70,000 a year, payable twice monthly, along with the "standard benefits" listed on the back. 401(k), health insurance paid 100, life insurance, paid 80, 3 weeks PTO, and an education reimbursement program that says "talk to HR". Jane's gruff response to this is, "That video was your job application."

Jackson is not the twins but he fishmouths /anyway/, as he looks over the paperwork. "Bodyguard," he says, eventually. "That ain't nothing like no work I've ever, uh --" He looks at Jane, still a little perplexed. "You know I'm in /art/ school, right?"

"No," Iolaus says, before Jane can open her mouth. "But we need guards 24/7. I'm sure we can work around your class schedule and still leave you with more time leftover than you would get working two jobs /and/ going to class." he points out, brightly.

Jackson is still looking over the page. Most noticeably the pay and benefits. He presses his knuckles against his lips. His gaze tracks back to the job title, and then up to Iolaus. "-- You know I have kids, right?" he says, softer.

"I don't plan on getting shot, so you shouldn't either." Iolaus says, with a wan smile. Jane looks over the other man. "Bodyguarding is perfectly safe as long as you don't fuck up."

"Nobody plans on getting shot," Jackson answers, considering the paper again. He looks at it a long moment. Looks up, over towards the doors leading into the boys' bedrooms. "-- What's the life insurance policy like?"

"Competitive--" Iolaus, this time, gets cut off by Jane. "It doesn't matter. You won't fuck up, and you won't get hurt. Iolaus told me you can do illusions as well as shields. If you aren't ever seen with the subject, you'll never be targeted by the subject's attackers."

"I can do a lot of things." Jackson folds the paper back up somewhat abruptly, slipping it back into the envelope. "Look, can I think about it, first? I've kind of got a --" One hand curls loosely into a fist, thumb rubbing against the stump of his smallest finger. "It's not a good time right now to be starting --" This breaks off, too. He looks away, out the window. "How long do I have to say yes or no?"

Iolaus looks over the other man carefully, a faint look of concern etching itself into his head. "You can have a couple weeks. I think there's a date on the contract already, but you can get back to us by... the 15th?" Iolaus offers, gently. "If you want to talk about it more, learn more about the responsbilities, Jane is happy to talk to you about it, or Maribeth." Her name brings a smile to Iolaus' face. "I think the two of you would get along spectacularly."

"The 15th," Jackson repeats, and he sounds kind of uncertain, still. His teeth click against his lip ring, his brow pulling into a deep frown as he continues looking out the window. "Yeah, I -- I should probably talk more about -- everything. I just need to clear up some -- the fifteenth," he repeats once more.

"If you need an extension, let Maribeth know. She can take care of it." Iolaus says, with a smile. Jane is studying Jax very carefully, frowning. "What are you doing that's so dangerous?" she asks, curtly. "You're acting like you're about to go into battle."

"Maybe I am," Jackson says, and his smile is quick but admittedly a little lopsided, his tone light in a way that doesn't quite mitigate the worry in his expression. "I mean," he adds, a moment later, "have you looked around the world lately? I feel like I'm stumbling into battles every day without even /trying/."

Jane's frown deepens, and she crosses her arms over her chest. "I've led too man--" She gets cut off by a heavy arm coming down on her shoulder. Iolaus looks her in the face. "He doesn't work for you yet, Jane. He can do what he wants." This time, though, Iolaus' expression is soft. "You don't need to prepare him."

"Led what?" Jackson asks, looking at Jane curiously even after Iolaus cuts her off. "I'm sorry, it's just not a --" His fingers are fisting up again, thumb pressing down once more to his missing finger-stump. "Not a thing that -- it's complicated. Right. Um. The fifteenth. I'll -- um. Thanks."

"No problem, Jackson." Iolaus says, with a warm smile. "Please, don't hesitate to reach out to either of us, or Maribeth." he says. His eyes glance over Jackson and he drops his hand. This seems to be Jane's signal to act once more, though. She reaches into her pants pocket and comes out with a wallet. Out of it, she takes a business card, and extends it to Jax. The card is thick, with the rising sun logo of the clinic embossed on the back, and in full color on the front. It has her name - MSG Jane O'Toole, USA, Ret. - her title - Security Chief - and a phone number.

Jackson flashes Iolaus a smile, quick, just as warm. "Thank you. For the offer. I'll -- be in touch." He reaches to take the card, looking it over. "Thanks, sir," comes automatically, perhaps a touch distracted as he looks the title over. He pockets the card, starting back towards the front door, presumably to let them out. He stops, though, halfway there, to turn to look back at Jane. He worries at a lip ring with his teeth, and then, "-- What, um." His cheeks colour, slightly. "What did you do in the military?"

Jane follows Iolaus as they make their way to the door, but when Jax speaks, she turns slightly on one foot to look at him. "I was a Master Sergeant. An explosives and ammunition expert for a brigade of soldiers." she says, voice soft but firm. "Do you know what that means?"

Jackson considers this a moment, looking at Jane thoughtfully. It takes a while before he answers. "Means you was in charge of leading a bunch of people in some tough situations," is the answer he gives, at length.

"Yes, I was." Jane says, firmly. "And some of them never came back home." She says this very simply, voice hard and as gruff as ever, and her expression does not move, as if it did not affect her. "So, believe me when I say, I know that look."

Jackson draws in a slow breath, and as he lets it out his head tips in a slight nod. His hand slips into his pocket, fingers fidgeting with the card there. "I should let y'all go," he says, shoulders squaring as he moves towards the door to unlock it. "But -- thank you. I'll --" There's another fidget of motion from his pocket. "I'll call you."

Jane nods curtly and turns towards the door without saying a word more. Iolaus gives a little wave and nods. "See you around, Jackson. Give us a call if you need our help." With that, he slips through the door and out into the hall, Jane following close by his side.