ArchivedLogs:Cold Leaf Juice

From X-Men: rEvolution
Cold Leaf Juice
Dramatis Personae

Autumn, DD, Jax, Joshua, Matt


"You're a good sister." (Part of Buzzkill TP.)


<NYC> Harbor Commons - Sunroom - Lower East Side

Bright and warm, this room is set up to enjoy a little bit of the outdoors even year-round. Tall glass panes make up most of its wall in between wood supports, providing a wide three-sided view of the garden and yard outside. As well as the inner doors leading back into the kitchens and dining room, an outer door leads out to the outdoor gardens, as well. Inside, the room is airy and green -- a plethora of potted herbs and plants hang from the ceiling, as well as ring the room in a series of narrow wooden raised-beds that provide growing space for a selection of herbs year-round.

Outside of the herb beds that ring the room, this place is designed simply to come and relax; quiet and simple, with clean stone floors and neutral-toned wicker furniture adorned with comfortable cushioning. Some of the chairs ring stone-and-glass tables for eating or conversing; a few more solitary seats come in the form of rocking chairs or netted hammock-chairs hanging from the ceiling.

It's evening but still bright, still warm; the setting sun streams in through the glass and is caught in the panes of myriad colourful glass suncatchers hung in the windows. It fills the room with colour, twinkling and dancing along the floors and furniture where, at the moment, a light evening snack has been set out. Or what probably constitutes a light evening snack in Jax's mind; mango summer rolls with dipping sauce and tiny chickpea burger sliders and citrus cookies and chocolate-drizzled raspberry bar cookies and chilled fruit soup and a tall pitcher of basil limeade, condensation dripping on the outside of the glass.

Jax himself is tucked into the net of a hammock chair, waiting. Maybe waiting, waiting kind of restlessly. Bounce, bounce, fret, bounce. Phone in one hand, laptop in his lap. He's in blue capris embroidered with silver dragonflies, a bright silvery-black mesh tank top layered over a strappier blue tank, chunky black and blue and silver velcro sneakers, his hair vivid peacock hues of blue and purple and green, his ink faintly luminescent and shifting also-restlessly against his skin.

Matt enters, wheeling a beaten-up gray suitcase whose wheels seem to find bumps on completely level floor. He wears a blue t-shirt with a cartoon person reading beneath an arch of books (bracketed by the words 'Best Time Machine EVER!'), tan cargo shorts, and brown athletic sandals. His free hand waves. "Hey!" He leaves the unwieldy luggage by the door and crosses the room to wrap Jax in a slightly sweaty hug. "I have brought your adoring fans."

Joshua is still in FDNY Paramedic uniform when he just appears in the sunroom, stifling a yawn, a very large cup of coffee in his hands. "You," he says to Matt, "can make this work for me, right?" It sounds juuust a touch desperate, as he thumps down into a wicker scoop chair. "Ohshitfood." One hand reaches towards the sliders. Makes grabbing motions. He frowns when the sliders fail to materialize in his hands, somehow.

Autumn follows in Matt's wake, her footfalls careful and uncertain, her eyes wide. She wears an ancient red They Might Be Giants t-shirt with a colossal mantis looming over the text, and black jeans whose cuffs drag on the floor when she walks. She carries a very stuffed black bookbag and grips her little brother's hand tight in hers. DD has on a slightly-too-large Lorax t-shirt and a very small backpack of his own, emblazoned with Toothless and Hiccup in flight. At Joshua's sudden appearance, Autumn looses a yelp and jumps back, picking DD up as she does so. The six-year-old seems somewhat less frightened than just amazed. "Whoa! Are you magic?" He is trying (failing) to wriggle out of his sister's grasp, peering over her shoulder at Joshua.

Jax sets his laptop aside on a table and bounces up out of his seat, curling very-warm arms back around Matt tightly. "Hihi-hi. Woah-hey hi. Everyone! There's food if you want some -- hey. Oh! That's Joshua he's not -- well. Okay. He's kinda a little bit magic, really. But only kinda. Um do y'all want -- I brought a little bit'a a snack in case anyone wanted -- a snack." His cheeks flush deep red, and he scuffs fingers through his hair before stepping forward towards Autumn and DD with a crooked curl of smile. "'pologies, where's my manners. I mean t'say, hi. An' welcome, this is -- well, /this/ ain't my house, this is the common house, but this is where we live, an' y'all are welcome t'stay for a bit while we figure things out, aright? Anyway, I'm Jax an' -- there's cookies."

Matt pours a glass of limeade and lifts it in Autumn and DD's general direction. "I told you there'd be food." He sits down across from Joshua. "Your prayer has been heard, and yes, that should work now. Unless DD is holding it, and even then it may only not work for him." The grin he flashes at Joshua softens when he turns to Autumn. "It's okay, Joshua won't hold any grudges now that he has his coffee back. Also, yeah, he is more or less magic."

"I just steal magic from people. It's Spence who's magic, really. You'll meet him soon enough. He's -- oh. /Oh/." Whatever Joshua was /going/ to say gets cut off at the assurance that the coffee will work again. He holds up a hand -- wait, hang on, conversation will continue momentarily -- and lifts his cup, eyes closing and a quiet whimper in his throat as he gulps greedily at the drink. "{Oh god.}" The large glass is two-thirds empty by the time he comes up for air. "{Okay.} Right. I might be able to actually work again soon. Jax, dude, this isn't a snack, this is a meal."

Autumn licks her lips and slowly eases her brother back down to the floor. DD is contriving to jump down before she even lets him go. "Hi!" he says, waving at Jax, "I'm DD. I love cookies!" Once freed from his sister's grasp, he bolts straight for the raspberry cookies. Autumn is slower to follow, eyes still quite wide and not a little fearful. "I'm Autumn," she says very softly, bowing. "Thank you so much for letting us stay here. I'm really sorry for all the trouble we've caused. I just don't even know how to turn it /off/ without Matt doing it for me." If her brother even comprehends all of this serious business, he is too preoccupied by Cookies to show it. He does, however, perk up at Joshua's comment on the food. "Are we having cookies for dinner?" He somehow manages to look more amazed by this suggestion than at the teleportation.

"It's okay. I mean, you don't gotta apologize to me. I mean, we've all -- been there. Not -- /here/, /exactly/," Jax corrects hastily with another blush. "I jus' mean ain't nobody jus' born controllin' their abilities from the get-go, y'know? We all had t'learn to handle what we do, an' some of us had messier learnin' curves than others an' it's only sheer dumb luck whether we did or didn't make messes for other people while we was learnin'. I know /I/ sure caused a whole /host'a/ problems back home --" His nose crinkles up, hand rubbing at the back of his neck. "But that's a whole 'nother story." He plucks up a citrus cookie for himself, pouring a glass of limeade and then settling back into his chair. "You're gonna hafta ask your sister about the cookies for dinner. -- but I'm hopin' we can help. With the turnin' it off -- well, with both of you. Not jus' turnin' it off, jus' -- learnin' to get your powers in control so they do what /you/ want them to do. Joshua's kind of /especial/ magic when it comes to helpin' people with that."

Matt sighs and sinks further into his chair. "There are, unfortunately, a lot of people who would like to hold you accountable, if only to promulgate their own views about the Mutant Menace." He sips his limeade and stretches out a hand to snag a mango roll, nudging the plate of sliders closer to Joshua in the process. "But we're not them." He is smiling again. "I've been trying to figure out how both of your powers work, but it's not a quick process when you don't really know how to use them yourselves."

Joshua takes another swig of coffee and sets the cup aside. "I'm not going to be able to help you overnight," he cautions. "What I do is -- kind of -- cheating? I copy powers. And then /I/ figure out how to use them. And then come back and tell you what I figured out. But it takes me a few days, usually. So you'll have to give me a little bit, yeah? But you can hang out here in the meanwhile. Or --" His eyes flick back to Jax, brows lifting with a silent question.

Autumn perches herself carefully on the edge of a seat. "Cookies are not dinner," she says with little conviction, "at least /try/ some of the other things?" DD pouts at his sister, raspberry cookie already in hand, but obliges and grabs a slider as well. She looks up at the three men. "I can wait, but...should I try to stay away from other mutants? Until I learn how to control my...powers?" Her mouth pulls to one side. "It hurt Matt and Hive last time, when they got too close to me. And Matt can't just follow me around to make sure I don't do that again."

"I don't think that's really entirely possible. At least here we have -- there's a /lot/ of us living here," Jax says thoughtfully. "But I think the main reason it hurt Matt and Hive so bad is that they weren't /expecting/ it. Matt can turn up our powers, too, and /has/ before with some of us -- but when we /know/ he's going to do it, it's way different than if it just happened suddenly. So if we tell people who live here, at least, that you're going to be around, they'll know what to expect and hopefully that won't happen again. Out in the city there's no way to guarantee you won't run into other mutants, but --" His teeth scrape against his lower lip. "Can you feel if we're around, at all?"

"Wow, this is so good!" Matt holds up the mango roll. "Thanks for this spread, Jax." He studies Autumn thoughtfully. "It was only a bit disorienting for me when I came in range of you today, nothing like before, but...well, I was also getting what Hive picked up, then. Even after you learn how to control it, though, you'll probably slip up from time to time. It's inevitable, but like Jax said, it'll probably be okay."

"Hive's -- a little bit of a special case, anyway." Joshua's head turns, very briefly, but then turns back towards the group. "I doubt you'll have /quite/ as drastic an effect on most people. At any rate, we'll be glad to work with you for the next little while and -- if you like, there's a school. Jax teaches there. It's specifically for mutant kids so it -- has a lot of practice. Working with people who are just getting used to their powers."

"Yeah, I can." Autumn's brows wrinkle. "I just didn't know that's what it was, before, and I have a hard figuring out who it is when I do sense it." She fidgets, eyeing the food, eyeing her brother. "I'm not sure decaffeinating half the city is exactly /okay/, and I definitely can't just stay away from DD." Finally, she half-rises and grabs a citrus cookie from the plate, looking a little sheepish. "Wait, there's a school? Seriously? Full of mutant kids?"

"I wasn't going to suggest stayin' away from your brother," Jax says with a wrinkle of his nose. "Only jus' maybe tryin' some t'avoid folks who you /ain't/ in a position to give a heads up to, if it's possible -- only jus' until you got a little more practice at controllin' things." He smiles, quick and bright, after this. "There is. I gone there myself, an' my kids jus' graduated. I teach, now. It's jus' a normal middle an' high school -- except for that we're for mutant kids an' understand better'n most places the issues we gotta deal with. We ain't had a program for elementary school before," he adds thoughtfully, tipping a glance to DD, "but we're actually jus' set to start one this upcomin' year. It'll be a tiny pilot program, but -- I can give y'all more details if school's a thing you're interested in."

"Definitely no need for you to keep away from DD," Matt says, scrubbing at his chin as if there were stubble there to scrub. "I can hang around here when I'm free, if you want. I'm only working very minimally part-time at the moment anyway. In fact, I'll also be teaching at the school in the fall!" He quirks a boyish smile. "As for the city...New Yorkers are a resilient lot. I'm sure we'll survive a few days of intermittent caffeine, which is surely better than /no/ caffeine."

<< Yeah, headaches and crankiness coming in unpredictable fits and starts. >> Joshua's mental grumbling to Jax and Matt is more good-natured than it probably would have been before his coffee. "You caffeinate /me/ before my shifts and I'll be happy. -- I'm sure Jax can take you out to the school. Let you talk to the administration there, see if it's a place you'd want to be."

"That does sound pretty awesome, but..." Autumn frowns. "It's gotta be a private school, right?" A little less hesitant than before, she helps herself to a cup of limeade. She offers it to DD, who eyes it with unvarnished skepticism. "It's got /leaves/ in it," he points out. She shrugs and sips at it, then looks back up at the adults. "I had figured I'd have to drop out and work full time if we ever left Dad. That okay, though." She sounds like she's trying to convince herself of that. "I've always been so bad at school anyway."

"It is a private school," Jax agrees, "but it's one with plenty of scholarships for people who need them. Right now I just want to figure out where y'all /want/ to go next, yeah? After that we can help you figure out how t'make it work." His smile returns, crooked and warm. "Though maybe we'll have someone from the administration come out /here/ t'talk t'you till you've worked with Joshua for a bit. I ain't so sure bringing you /to/ the school'd be the greatest idea jus' right this /exact/ moment."

Matt's hand rises to cover his mouth, and his brows furrow ever so slightly. He looks like he wants very much to say something, but finishes his mango roll instead. "You're a good sister," he says finally, with an effort. At Jax's suggestion, though, he brightens. "That, or I can accompany you on a visit? I feel like the facilities themselves are worth seeing."

Joshua's eyes flick briefly to Matt, then down to his slider. He polishes the tiny-burger off in another bite, licking his fingers clean and washing it down with the rest of his coffee. "Yeeeah that's probably a better idea," he agrees with a tip of his head towards Matt. "Anyway, you guys want to see the grounds /here/? If you're gonna be crashing with us a bit you should probably get to know /this/ place, too."

DD had just stuffed the remainder of a raspberry cookie into his mouth when Joshua mentions touring. The little boy's eyes light up and he immediately starts hopping in small circles while trying (failing) to speak. Autumn rolls her eyes and offers her cup to him again. "Slow down. Chew. Swallow." He does accept the limeade this time, leaves or no leaves, and, after a little more bouncing, erupts in a steady stream of words, "Is Dusk here? Are there other kids? That's really good leaf juice! Can we go to the playground? Please."

Autumn takes the almost-empty glass back from him before he spills it, and drains it herself. "I think he means 'yes.'"