29 April 2014
<XS> Back Porch
The back patio is a restful place to sit and relax, in most weather. Ample seating comes in the form of umbrella'd deck chairs and a cushioned porch swing, and the neighboring gardens attract butterflies and hummingbirds to make the viewing pleasant. The hot tub is usually open for use, though in snowy weather the transition in and out is a shivery one!
It's quiet, out. Chill and dark, now, past dinner and past /curfew/ and while not all of the mansion is /asleep/ the students are, at least, all /inside/. Which means little for the adults. /Some/ of whom have had a Very Long Day. Joshua is out here draped into a deck chair, slumped heavily back with legs stretched out in front of him and a cold Dos Equis in hand, in jeans and a rather weatherbeaten X-Men jacket over his long-sleeved ribbed shirt. He smells freshly showered, after a recent training session, and at the moment seems focused on little more than staring up at the stars overhead.
Nearby, Flicker is stretched, similarly droopy-tired, flopped back over the closed lid of the hot tub. He just has a metal water bottle. Also half-uniformed, jacket and jeans and boots, also recently washed up. "You think if we ask really nice, we can stop off for barbecue?"
Micah is not nearly so exhausted or so official looking, clad in a navy henley and bluejeans, a fuzzy (somewhat glittery) emerald green blanket in his lap and draped down over his legs. He is still getting around in his bright lime-green ultralight wheelchair, a thermos of tea tucked in at one side. He's settled somewhere between the others, trying to offer what help he can in preparation for the raid the next day. A plate of assorted muffins he brought out from the kitchens rests on a nearby table.
"... barbecue." Jax is just emerging from the mansion, himself, changed into a long purple-and-black skirt and very bright rainbow sweater coat. "Seriously? We ain't parkin' the jet in Memphis jus' so's you can get ribs." Though he sounds kind of amused by the idea. He ambles closer to Micah's chair, leaning down to -- steal the thermos of tea, /first/, and /second/ peck his husband on the top of the head. Because Priorities.
Sage herself is coming from the gardens, an XS hoodie, jeans, and boots comprising her own outfit, other than her usual ATHENA on her face, just in time herself to faintly catch the ribs comment. "I agree. We'd die from too much fat and that wouldn't be very helpful to our mission, would it?" After her probably awful attempt at humor, Sage is taking her own seat, before turning to Micah. "How are you recovering, Micah? I hope you are alright."
"Just so I can get /really good/ ribs," Flicker corrects, wistfully. "I don't do them /often/, if I'm going to I may as well do them /right/."
<< Also, we could roadtrip there while singing 'Graceland'. >> Mentally present even if he isn't physically, Hive suggests his just as wistfully. There's a shivering background hum of Paul Simon underlying his words as they press into everyone's minds.
Joshua just snorts, and takes a gulp of his beer. "We could pick /up/ some ribs?" he suggests hopefully. "Save 'em for after the mission. Indulge in some well-deserved gluttony." His eyes drop from the stars overhead to look at Micah curiously. "/Are/ you alright?"
Micah giggles at all the barbecue talk, giving up the tea thermos when Jax reaches for it. He curls an arm back to sneak slightly-chilly fingers under Jax's shirt to rub at his belly. /Might/ could be he's been a little handsy the past two days. "Could see if maybe they'd make ribs in the kitchen for when y'all get back? An'...barbecue tofu, maybe? Don't think it's beyond the capabilities here." He gives a little shrug at that. "Yeah, I'm fine. Why wouldn't I be?"
Jax squirms, shivering at the cold touch but pressing back into it, skin fiercely warm after both training and a shower. "Sure they could make ribs but I don't know as it'll be Memphis pit barbecue, really. -- Though no mission was ever proper done on empty stomachs. I'll get y'all barbecue if y'really /want/ barbecue." He opens the thermos, taking a small sip and curling his arm loosely around Micah's shoulders. "/Possibly/ might-not be on account'a I lopped off your leg yesterday." His nose wrinkles up at this memory. Quietly beneath his breath as he leans more heavily against Micah, he starts humming. 'Graceland'.
"You are in a wheelchair, after all." Sage's eyes observe him briefly, listening to Jax's own words, before changing the subject. "Where will be keeping the rescuees after the mission? The mansion?"
"Pfft, wheelchair." Joshua's eyes flick back up towards the sky. "I mostly wanted to know if it was still hurting or anything." He rolls a shoulder in a lazy shrug. "Traded Eloise's thing for Kate's. I'm experimenting."
<< Fine fucking time to experiment, >> Hive grumbles. << Two days before a goddamn raid he decides to try a new fucking. Power. >>
"He's a quick study." Flicker slides off the lid of the hot tub, hopping to his feet to go nab a muffin.
"Figured we'd just stick all the rescuees in Micah's TARDIS," Joshua answers Sage. "Tuck some extra blankets in there, they'll be fine."
"I ain't /sick/ or nothin'. Just haven't figured out the motor control for usin' a prosthesis yet, so the wheelchair's a better plan of gettin' 'round for now is all." Micah smiles sidewise over at Joshua. "I been through /a lot/ of surgeries, an' this one's /prob'ly/ the least painful I've ever dealt with. Ain't never got t'have layin'-on-hands healin' durin' the process before. S'a little sore. Itchy. I'll live." He snorts at the idea of storing refugees in his van. "Yeah. All...three people as can pack themselves into the back t'gether will be set. 'Less they wanted a kitchen or a bathroom t'use. Or space t'lie down without havin' t'do it in shifts." << Kate's healin' is stronger. Makes sense t'want /more/ of that around. >>
"Quick study an' it's similar /enough/ t'plenty he's done before. /And/ bein' a telepath /while/ watchin' her work for two days straight prob'ly don't hurt none either," Jax points out over a longer sip of tea. "Whoa. Least painful? This mean I can be a surgeon now? Guys I'm the best surgeon he's ever had?" Jax bounces slightly on his toes. "That's it I'm changin' careers." He caps Micah's thermos again, tucking it back in a his husband's side. "Well. The Professor's arranged a safehouse for us /in/ Tennessee. We'll be bringing 'em all there straight off. Joshua an' Mirror'll teleport the ones as is critical enough t'need care immediately to the clinic an' the rest'll drive back up in the mornin'. M'church is lettin' everyone crash in the basement as needs a place -- I imagine any young'n's will end up here in the end, same as ever." His nose crinkles up again. "... an' hopefully this time won't no crazy thugs drive no /trucks/ through my church over it."
"That works, then." Sage responds quickly to Jackson. "That sounds like quite a bit of jobs for you, Jackson."
"Hide yo children, hide yo wives." Joshua takes another gulp of his beer, lips twitching at Jax's sudden eagerness for SURGERYING. "Or your freaking limbs."
"He's used to it." Flicker blips back over to the hot tub, muffin in hand, reappearing just over the lid to settle himself down cross-legged on its lid. "These raids usually mean a million jobs at once and no sleep for two weeks for him."
<< Lotta fucking jobs for you too this time now, >> Hive tells Sage, almost cheerfully. << If we're like his. Goddamn. /Backup/ brain then maybe he won't fry himself /so/ bad. >>
"Love ya, honey, but I think y'gotta share some of the credit with Joshua this time," Micah replies to Jax's newfound love for the surgical arts with a chuckle. Which, unfortunately, soon becomes a sigh. "Wish I could help more, but I'll only be in the way 'til y'all get back closer t'home, anyhow, I guess. An' I /wish/ I could say not sleepin' for two weeks was /new/ for this one." His fingers curl in a bit, gently tickle-poking at Jax's ribs. "Just...let me know if there's anythin' I'm of use for up here."
"Helpin' get the church-space /habitable/," Jax tells Micah promptly. "Helpin' prep the /Clinic/ for an influx'a everyone, they're /all/ gonna need t'get checked out at least 'fore settlin' in anywhere an' we tend to just -- stick people in /offices/ on account'a the clinic weren't never intended for. Actually. Havin'. People." He squirms again at the tickle-poking, his own fingers squeezing in at Micah's shoulder. "/Okayfine/ I guess Joshua helped a /littlebit/. An' I slept! I -- burned all our sheets t'a crisp but I slept." His tone is light -- despite the kind of /wired/ energy flaring through him bright and fierce and raw he's oddly /not/ as stressed as usual about this raid, fairly confident in his team's competence and more just glad to be doing /something/. "Honestly I'll be glad come June when we /got/ the Commons, havin' a place t'keep folks will be a blessin' an' a half."
<< Hopefully. >> This is all Sage thinks, as she moves out of her chair and begins to head towards the mansion. "I guess I should get some sleep, at least. Good night, everyone." And then she's going off.
"See you tomorrow." Joshua lifts his beer in salute to Sage, tipping it slightly towards her as she heads off.
"Goodnight," Flicker says, a little more warmly.
<< I'm just going to be dreaming of goddamn ribs, >> Hive complains. The background music of his mind is still singing, /My traveling companions are ghosts and empty sockets I'm looking at ghosts and empties. But I've reason to believe we all will be received --/
"-- in Graceland," Flicker sings, aloud. "There is a girl in New York City who calls herself the human trampoline." He lies back against the hot tub again, arm folding across his chest, tapping the muffin lightly against his jacket. "We're going to have a lot of blessings then, maybe."
"Looking forward to sleeping, personally," Joshua opines. "Food," he adds to Micah. "You'll be of use. Everyone is going to need so much eating."
"So, lotsa shoppin' with...hopefully somebody's got money t'do that." Micah cringes at this. "Lotsa directin' /other/ folks t'move stuff about, also somethin' I can do. Can be on hand t'help triage once folks get back up this way, for the Clinic." He pets more gently at Jax's stomach, a blush creeping across his cheeks at the mention of...sleeping. Burning sheets. Something around that sentence. "The Commons'll be just 'bout every kinda blessin', for this kinda thing an'...everythin' else." He nods to Sage as she heads off. "Sleep's /always/ a good plan before these things. G'night, hon." Hive's complaint earns a smile. "Somebody /definitely/ get some good ribs for Hive. If he's dreamin' 'bout food? Gotta take advantage." He nods again at Joshua's contribution. "Okay. So I'll be takin' over the kitchen every minute it ain't bein' used for mealtime t'morrow. Schedule m'appointment with Lucien for one of the times when it /is/ busy. Then aaaall the soups an' stews an' curries an' chilis an' casseroles an' pastas."
"We'll jus' hold up some banks," Jax reassures Micah with a small rub at his back. "No worries. -- G'night, hon." He offers Sage a quick smile, lifting his hand to curl fingers in a small wave. "/I/ want split pea soup. Can you make split pea soup? I'd be so happy." He drops his hand to his side, tucking it into a pocket of his coat. "Take Ryan's card if you're goin' shoppin'." His mind is continuing, quietly as he looks upward, << And sometimes when I'm falling, flying, tumbling in turmoil I say oh -- so this is what she means. >>
A small shiver ripples through him, his other arm curling tighter around himself. "Maybe sleep'd be a good. For everyone."
"Good for me. Have to go sit in on Dusk again before we leave." Joshua pushes himself to his feet, swigging down the last of his beer. "You know what'd be a real blessing, is having him back out with us."
For a moment, Hive's mind squeezes uncomfortably tighter against the others'.
"Buenas noches." Joshua claps a hand lightly against Micah's shoulder before heading back into the mansion.
<< Was the burning sheets before or after you fell asleep? >> Hive's squeezing lets up in favor of a more teasing tone.
"Might have to," Micah replies in a rueful tone. "I'll make /so much/ split pea soup. An' not even fill it up with ham." He spares a hand to reach up and ruffle at Jax's lack-of-hair. "Man, sometimes I /forget/ that we know people who have /actual/ money. The whole concept's kinda /odd/." He offers a little half-smile with this. "I can check up on 'im, too. Between trips. While everybody's...gone." His head nods a few times in agreement. "That'd be one of the /best/ things." Micah's hand leaves off pestering Jax to pat at Joshua's as the other man leaves. "Thanks, honey. Just... Y'know. G'night." Hive's comment deepens the colour in Micah's cheeks, though it doesn't get an /actual/ response.
"Kind'a you." Jax's nose crinkles at the promise of no ham; he nuzzles his head up into the ruffling, faintly raspy from a day's accumulation of stubble. "What's the point'a havin' crazy celebrity friends if not -- financin' terrorisms?" He flushes deeply crimson, too, at Hive's teasing, head ducking very abruptly. He doesn't say anything either, even if his /mind/ betrays answer /for/ him in a reflexive acknowledgment, << little'a both. >> His hand scrubs over his cheek, and he shakes his head quickly as he turns, too, for the door. "Right. Sleep. Should -- at least. Maybe. /Try/. Some of that. Hopefully with less fire this time." Though he doesn't actually sound all /that/ hopeful of it.
<< Don't know if it'll be the best time to check up on him. I'll be busy. He won't be in great shape. >> Hive slips back from teasing to tired rather quickly, slow pressure leaning up against the other men's minds once more.
Flicker nibbles at his muffin, watching Jax for a moment and then looking downwards. "'Night." His fingers fidget with one of the laces of his boots. "Not sure he'll /ever/ be in great shape."
"Sounds like the /best/ time t'check up on 'im. He'll be /alone/ there. Just...I can stay across the /room/ from 'im, but he needs familiar voices. Presences. From time t'time." Micah's head shakes firmly, set in this thought. "We'll do everythin' we can for 'im. Gettin' his /body/ whole an' not in constant pain's gotta be a huge first step. The rest'll prob'ly be a lotta long, hard work, too. But there's no gettin' there without gettin' through /here/ first." His eyes follow Jax as the other man starts to move. "I should prob'ly go...help. With that whole sleep thing. He really needs it tonight." More pink shades in over his ears and neck. "G'night."
"G'night, honey-honey." Jax pauses, turning back around to move over and give Flicker a tight hug. "Y'all get some sleep, yeah?" It's habitual fretting, certainly, but tonight on the eve of another raid it isn't actually a /suggestion/. He holds the door open for Micah, eyes briefly lighting. Micah's wheelchair lights, too, the spokes of the wheels glowing in a rainbow of bright colours. "If you make vroom noises," he says hopefully, "I can totally make flames shoot out behind you."
<< Alone there means he might kill you. And I'm going to be possibly too distracted to make sure he /doesn't/. >> A faint thread of tension edges back into Hive's tone, bristling prickly-sharp with his still rather exhausted: << Night. >>
Flicker returns the hug, just as tight. "Soon," he promises. A smile curls bright across his face as Micah's chair lights up. "-- Green flames?" he asks, just as hopefully.
Micah reaches over to muss up Flicker's hair as he passes. << He's that dangerous right now an' we're leavin' 'im in a /hospital/? What about all the staff there? Either it's safe for me t'go in that room or it ain't safe for /them/ an' we gotta get 'im moved t'where he can be /handled/. >> His brow furrows, a pause in his roll toward the door. "Green'll match the chair," is what he says aloud, though with less of the playful-amusement than such a thing might otherwise carry.
<< Alternately your binary dichotomy there is a bunch of bullshit, >> Hive answers Micah, the tense edge in his tone growing. << I mean, he's never been /safe/ and they know that. But /also/ people he has strong feelings about rile him up /way/ the fuck more than strangers. So he's way the hell more dangerous to /you/ than he is to them. Strangers annoy him, that's a whole world different than actually having intense fuckin /feelings/ he can't process right now jesus fucking Christ you can wait one goddamn day I'm sure. >>
Flicker rubs his hand against his eyes, his smile fading. He finishes his muffin, sliding down off the top of the hot tub. "Sleep was a good idea, maybe."
<< It wasn't /about/ me. I was legitimately worried he'd /hurt/ someone once he wasn't bein'...controlled anymore. That's all. If I'm not /allowed/ t'worry then I should prob'ly just go. >> Micah continues through the door.
Jax's eye darts over to Flicker, his own smile dimming as the other man's fades. The glowing lights vanish from Micah's chair, his brows pulling slightly together. He lifts his hand to scuff his palm against the top of his head, eying Flicker with a distinct note of concern. "-- G'night," is all he says, though, slipping in after Micah and letting the door shut behind them.
"Goodnight," Flicker answers, quietly. From Hive there's only a sharper mental prickle, odd undertones to it that feel almost like a growl, and then he is silent once more.