ArchivedLogs:Barely Suppressed

From X-Men: rEvolution
Barely Suppressed
Dramatis Personae

Lucien, Matt, Rasheed


"{I can fix this.}" (zombie related.)


<NYC> Rasheed's Lab - Toure Pharmaceuticals - Brooklyn

Gleaming and polished and state-of-the-art, this lab is spacious and well-equipped. There are a number of workspaces, some with biosafety cabinets, some with holographic or conventional computer terminals. A number of storage cabinets sit against one wall; spectrometers and other equipment are found around the counters.

The phlebotomist, her task complete, makes herself scarce and leaves Matt slumped in the blood draw chair. He is propping up his chin with the palm of one hand (arm crooked, conveniently, to press the gauze over the most recent hole in his veins). The thumb of his other hand passes over the black titanium ring over and over, as if to reassure himself it's still there. His eyes are fixed on a screen at a nearby work station, displaying a sequence of fMRI images from his most recent stint in the scanner. He is grinding his teeth in somewhat unsettling fashion.

Lucien's fingers twitch, slightly, at the grinding sound. He is in front of a work station of his own, making notes -- by hand -- with a stylus on the holographic display. His face is pale, shadowed, his hand somewhat shaky as he writes. There's a heavy muddle of activity working overtime in his system, brain still fighting hard to keep /his/ mind ordered against the disease buried within it. His teeth clench. Then start to grind, too. Just for a moment before his eyes lift wearily towards his brother. "{You --}" A long beat of hesitation. "{Should eat.}" There's /plenty/ of meat on hand. He's been keeping them quite stocked.

Rasheed is over at one of the biosafety cabinets, though he leaves his samples, peeling off his gloves as he stands. His eyes flick to the MRI images, then over to Matt. Quiet, he heads back to the computer, settling down in front of the monitor with a heavy slump.

A low, unhappy groan is Matt's only reply. He rises all the same and goes to the insulated tote sharing a counter with some library books and a large thermos of tea. Unzipping the tote, he pulls out a long parcel wrapped in silver foil. After a moment's hesitation, picks up Adam Roberts's /New Model Army/, as well, before wandering back toward his previous perch. He never quite makes it there, however. Passing Rasheed's workstation, he suddenly spins the other man's chair around (drops both food and book into the good doctor's lap, incidentally) and lunges at his face with a somewhat sloppy snap of incisors.

Lucien glances up swiftly from his note-taking, fingers clenching tight around his stylus. His lips press together, chair swiveling to face Matt and Rasheed. Aside from the rotation of his chair, he makes no actual move to /intervene/, here, watching his brother's lunge with a narrowing of eyes. "Matt." His voice is as heavy as his expression, exhaustion weighing it down. "{This has to stop.}"

"Ghh!" One of Rasheed's arms clamps down on the arm of his chair as it is spun. The other lifts, shooting uptward reflexively to guard his face against the biting; it's his forearm that Matt's teeth end up finding, instead. The spindly doctor leans back in the chair, eyes slightly wider as he pushes back against the other man. "{No, stop.}" Though his words are in Arabic the somewhat strangled /tone/ he has is clear enough.

Matt's jaws close down hard on the forearm that Rasheed has so generously offered up. Though his teeth are in no way sharp enough to puncture the fabric of the other man's sleeve, the mere *pressure* of the bite hurts quite a lot and will surely bruise later. Neither his brother's very mild non-rebuke nor Rasheed's pleading seem to sway him, but a moment later he seems to recollect himself all the same. His eyes snap open wide and he staggers back as though *Rasheed* were the one who had bitten him. His ability spills out in an abrupt wave, augmenting anything and everything in its reach...which, at the moment, is only Lucien's biokinesis.

Lucien's breath comes out in a ragged huff, the sudden surge in his powers throwing off the carefully calibrated work his mind /has/ been doing. A wave of nausea ripples out through the room, soon followed by a heavy throb of headache. The aggression /Matt/ is feeling, though, eases slightly, even in time with the wrench of sick-pain. "{Stop.}" Less heavy, this time; there's a faint edge of panic sharpening Lucien's tone. Now he /does/ push out of his seat, crossing the distance between their chairs in a few quick steps to curl one arm around Matt. His cheek presses to the side of Matt's head, an almost soporific wave of calm flooding out from his touch.

Rasheed's eyes have opened wider; the next shove of his arm is harder, for all the good it does with Matt's teeth clamped on his bony arm. His jaw has clenched tight when the other man releases him, hand moving to his mouth when that wave of nausea hits. His other hand lifts the foil-wrapped food Matt had dropped on him. Very warily -- offers it out.

Matt whimpers softly and sways, almost losing his footing but catching himself against a nearby countertop. He tears his eyes from Rasheed and turns to Lucien, his face pale and unguarded. "{I can't!}" he whispers, but relaxes into his brother's embrace even before the biochemically mediated calm reaches him. The faint trembling of his body ceases, and he rests his head on Lucien's shoulder. "{I could have killed him.}" Hints of his terror make it into his drowsy words even through the haze of calm. "{Gods, I could have killed us all.}" His eyes snap to Rasheed again when the doctor moves, then down to the parcel in his hand. It takes him several long seconds to recognize the hot dog in its foil wrapper, and several more seconds to reach out and take it. "{The power suppression drugs. He'd have access to them.}" Though speaking in French, he's looking directly at Rasheed over Lucien's shoulder while he says this.

There's a tremble in Lucien's arms as well. The throb of pain fades from the room at large. There's a tight knot of sick-worry-fear remaining that, today, his ability is doing nothing to level out; it leaks across through to Matt as he squeezes his brother tighter. "It's getting worse." This is English, whispered soft and shakily. But in French again: "{They will not save you.}"

Rasheed slumps back into his chair after the hot dog is taken. His arm curls against his chest, fingers rubbing gently against the fabric where Matt had bitten. He is turning slowly back to his screen, a little more stiffly than before but oddly calm for the exchange that just happened. A muscle twitches in his cheek at Lucien's English words. "{Perhaps it is best if we take a break for today.}"

"{No,}" Matt agrees, his pronunciation a bit sluggish, "{but they'll keep me from killing everyone I love while we figure out how to fix this.}" He pulls back far enough to look up into Lucien's eyes, so similar to his own. "{And we must.}" He glances at Rasheed when he speaks, then lifts an eyebrow at Lucien.

Lucien holds Matt's gaze a moment, then tips his head forward, forehead resting against his brother's. "{I can fix this.}" His words are rough. Despite this profession, the foggy-minded drag of exhaustion, the throb of headache, the roiling churn of nausea rolling off him are all palpable, ability already slightly strained under the burden of keeping his /own/ mind in order. "{There are so many other sick, by now. They have minds to study just as well.}"

The French goes over Rasheed's head. The pointed looks and raised brows do not. He turns back aside from his computer, one hand resting absently on the book that is still in his lap. "{Do you need --}" His Arabic words come out a little stiffly as his dark eyes lift to the brothers. "{... assistance.}"

"{Of course you can,}" Matt concedes, though the furrow of his brows bespeaks concern and doubt, "{but you can't watch me constantly. What if you're asleep the next time I lose grasp of it?}" Gritting his teeth, he shakes his head sharply as if the clear it. "{If they can find someone else to study, fine.}" He looks at Rasheed again, his frown deepening in noncomprehension. "{Ask him. Please.}"

Lucien's shoulders slump heavily downward. His fingers press harder against Matt's back, but then he releases his brother, straightening to look at Rasheed instead. "{You have drugs that can turn off him.}" His jaw clenches tighter before corrects, "{His ability.}" The Arabic does not flow nearly as fluidly off his tongue as his own language does. "{He needs. That. And we need new -- people.}" His brows draw together. "{To study. I will not watch /him/ --}" He doesn't finish, here, but his eyes shift towards the fMRI scans.

Rasheed's brows lift as Lucien speaks, but then pull back downwards in comprehension. "{Yes.}" Simply that, with a curt nod of his head. "{Treatment for him will be easy. Finding new volunteers for this...}" His frown deepens.

Matt leans back against a lab bench now, unwrapping his somewhat abused meal and taking a savage bite out of the hot dog. His expression ranging from baleful to just plain blanket as the other two men converse, but he never actually stops staring at Rasheed, the intensity of his focus feverish and disquieting.

Lucien's answer to this is just a /sharp/ breath, a thin slice of a smile. "{I have faith,}" he's switched to a more comfortable Spanish, here, his tone very dry, "{that somehow you'll manage to dredge some up.}"