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Dramatis Personae

Lucien, Micah, Jax, Spencer, Sera

19 November 2014



<NYC> {Lighthaus} - Harbor Commons - Lower East Side

Bright and sunny-light, this house lives up to its name. With a plethora of enormous windows flooding the place with light and an open layout, the ground floor feels more spacious than it is.

The small entryway has a closet space for shoes and coats, and doors at either side leading to the neighboring apartments. Past this it opens straight into the living room, a wide expanse of space bordered on one side by a curved set of stairs leading up (with colourful glass tiling on the risers between each stair) and next to these, the half-wall into the kitchen. Cool pale tile underfoot and many dark cabinets with a small walk-in pantry, plentiful custom granite countertops, black and speckled faintly with rainbowy flecks, lots of hanging space overhead for cookware, a large double-oven. There's a strip of rather detailed mosaic-work in the kitchen backsplash, colourful glass tiling depicting strange fantastical herbs and small faeries and firelizards darting among them. In back of the kitchen, a door opens up to a small sunroom, wide and two-stories high with a balcony overlook from the second floor; two of the windows here have cushioned windowseats, and there's a wealth of herbs growing in hanging pots and small window-boxes.

The back wall of the living room is nearly entirely dominated by windows, huge and allowing a view of the river beyond with bench windowseats lining the sills. There are plentiful paintings on the wall, surreal and fantasy-inspired, mostly in shades of blacks greys with bright bursts of colour that are mirrored in the decor -- monochrome upholstery on the couch and armchair but colourful throw-pillows, black and white huge corduroy beanbags (and one large red doggie-bed,) soft throw rugs also in mostly black and white with splashes of rainbow woven in. The hand-built furniture -- tall chairs by the kitchen/living room counter, dining table and chairs in the kitchen, low coffeetable in the living room -- has been hand-painted as well, black with bursts of colourful abstract designs.

Along the living room's other wall, doors branch off to a full bathroom -- in white and deep blue with one wall of the shower done in colourful intricate mosaic too, an underwater scene full of strange mythical water-creatures; tiny water-sprites have been interspersed at random points in the rest of the wall tiles, as well. There's a small studio space beside the bathroom, large windows as well and a gratuitous amount of shelving and cabinets along the walls; this room has very /little/ colour in it, just white walls and black furnishing.

Knock knock knock! It's /crisp/ and freezing-cold outside and Lucien is dressed for it, a sharp tailored peacoat and a soft green scarf, thin black leather gloves, a dark suede cap pulled down over his head. His cheeks are nevertheless somewhat ruddy with the cold, though not quite so red as Sera's beside him.

The little girl can be /felt/ even before his knocking can be heard, a /bright/ exuberant spill of energy that bursts excitable through the house. Bounceboncebounce, bouncebouncebounce. /She's/ more bundled than he is, puffy purple coat, thick purple mittens, big multicoloured knit sweateryboots, a purple-green-blue scarf wound round-and-round-and-round her neck to the point her reddened (sniffly) (drippy) face can only barely be seen. As much restless hyper energy as she's forcibly /shoving/ onto everyone around her, she's soaking /in/ just as much emotion from people, too. Possibly it is contributing in no small measure to her restless fidget as she waits on the doorstep.

Possibly it's contributing to Lucien's rather /uncharacteristic/ fidget, too. He toys restlessly with the canvas shopping bag he holds, and knocks again, barely any time after the first. Impatient. Knock-knock-/knock/.

Micah skids just a little across the entryway floor, the series of little bumpy grips on the bottom of his fluffy soot sprite slippers (just socks are not adequate to this cold snap, oh no) not quite up to the task of the sudden rush at the flow of excited impatience through the door. There is a (thankfully) small /thump/ against the door before the sounds of locks unlocking and knobs turning. The remainder of the redhead is fairly bundled as well: blue and green plaid flannel wrapped over a kelly green henley, the small hole in the left knee of his jeans revealing grey thermal pants layered underneath. "Hiii, how are you? Come in, come in, it's freezin'." He ushers the pair in out of the cold before pushing the door to /sharpish/ behind them.

It's maybe the additional jolt of energy that powers Spencer to the door /that/ much faster than usual, /appearing/ behind Micah with a bright smile that turns into wide eyes and nose-crinkle at the blast of cold from outside. "Oh /wow/ do you think it'll snow maybe it'll snow!" Despite the nose-crinkle there's excitement in his voice. Maybe because empathy or maybe at the prospect of school getting cancelled.

Jax pokes his head out from the kitchen, a little bit flour-dusted and with a warm smile creeping onto his face. "Ain't got no snow in the forecast, honey-honey -- Hi, Sera. Hi, Luci. Oh gosh you both look half froze. I got brownies jus' about t'go in the oven -- y'want tea? Cocoa? Somethin' toasty?" His bundling consists of liquid-looking metallic-silver leggings paired with /furry/ black-and-red leg warmers, a black-on-black vinework-patterned crushed-velvet miniskirt, long bell-sleeved black shirt under a shorter red-and-black diamond patterened one, mismatched black and red arm-warmers, glittery makeup, glittery eyepatch, long mismatched knee-high socks. "Sera sweetie d'you need a tissue there's plenty in the bathroom."

Sera is wriggling out of her many layers, foisting them off on her brother to handle. "I don't need a tissue," (she says as she wipes her nose on her sleeve), "up in the north part it's snowing /so much/ do you want to take me to Buffalo?" She looks at Spencer Really Hopefully? Like maybe they can go to Buffalo Right Now?

"You need a tissue." Lucien doesn't sound immensely hopeful that he will be heeded. He collects SmallChildGarments one by one to hang in the closet in neater order than the heap Sera left them in, tucking his own things away afterwards and slipping out of his shoes. Beneath he coat he is in a soft green-and-grey v-neck cashmere sweater paired with dark jeans and dark socks. He offers the bag out to Jax. "Tea sounds lovely. It is a bouillabaisse. Squash and chickpea. It seemed good cold-weather food."

Micah provides a tissue to Sera (ta-da!) before assisting with catching outerwear and hanging it in the closet so as Lucien isn't utterly overwhelmed. "Oh, I just picked up some of this really nice milk oolong might go with that well," he recommends when the food is announced. "We got guests /and/ food! That's quite a haul for one night." He /shivers/ at the kids' conversation, nodding thankfully at Jax's reply. "No snow waitin' in the wings just yet, thank goodness. Don't mind holdin' off on the frigid or breakin' the crutches back out s'long as we can get away with it." He leads the way to the kitchen...perhaps the best place to thaw out when it is this warm. The tea kettle gets a new dose of water before settling on the stovetop.

"Oh sure," Spence gives in glib answer to the question of Buffalo, snagging Sera's arm casually to vanish with her. The subsequent sound of feet just upstairs, though, is some reassurance that the children have /not/ just vanished to Buffalo.

"Oh, wow!" Jax takes the bag happily back to the kitchen, setting it on the counter. He disappears briefly behind the oven as he ducks to slide a few trays of brownies inside, reappearing once he's set the timer. "That -- does sound like perfect winter sortsa food. /An'/ the perfect sorta tea. Not that it's actually even winter yet. Just /feels/ it. How y'/doin'/, honey-honey? Don't think I done seen you since -- since your. No. I /didn't/ actually see you on your birthday, I jus' kinda dropped off cupcakes an' left. Hope t'was a good one. Seen Matt a couple Tuesdays since but you make yourself scarce."

Sera snags the tissue, dabbing only briefly at her nose -- the tissue comes away with a couple red flecks of blood together with the drippy-wet, and Lucien's lips press thin before the children vanish. He follows Micah into the kitchen, a little deflated and maybe not /just/ from the lessening of Sera's empathic influence; he sinks heavily into a chair, rubbing at the bridge of his nose. "That sounds lovely, Micah. Please. -- It has been a while, hasn't it?" A very small smile pushes the worry-lines back off his face. "I had a surprisingly good day, that day. Improved in no small part by your baking. I hope the crises here have been kept to a manageable level."

“M'pretty much just gonna want squash all the time from here on out. No help for it,” Micah comments with a chuckle. He nods and goes about setting up the tea leaves to steep once the water has reached the appropriate temperature. “/Has/ been too long.” Which means hugs, from behind Lucien's chair. As always, he is careful not to make uninvited skin contact. “Crises...yeah. Mostly just Dusk's situation an' the insanity of that sentencin'. Nothin' t'drop on your doorstep this time!” The little grin at this joke is somewhat lacking in mirth. “Surprisin'ly good?”

"We're largely crisis-free this month, really. 'least no /new/ crisises." Jax slips over to take a seat at the table beside Lucien, tucking one foot up underneath himself. "I don't know 'bout only squash. Could leave some room in there for other root veggies. Got a soft spot for sweet potatoes, m'self. -- Surprisingly good's nice t'hear." His smile brightens. "From anyone, but you 'specially. What made it so special?"

"Likely Jim could help you with that desire. Though I do not know how much that would try him, in winter." Lucien looks thoughtful at this, turning his head to eye the chill world outside like /he/ is considering what such a request might cost. /Hmm/. His fingers drum slowly against his knee. He leans lightly back into the hug, only brief before straightening again. "If his lawyers are worth their salt I am sure they will work that out for him. -- Ah, I'd got a callback on my audition that day. A small celebration, but a celebration nevertheless."

Micah lingers by the stove for awhile, fussing with and steeping tea. When he finally makes his way to the table, it is to deliver a full teapot and three cups for pouring into. "Yeesh, what a husband. Makin' m'squash a 'sometimes food'." His head shakes sadly, tsking softly though his lips have pulled into a lopsided grin. "M'hopin' enough lawyers'll settle it. Been pokin' 'bout some civil rights groups an' such as might lend a hand with the legal side." Fortunately, Micah is busy pouring tea when Lucien makes his announcement, or he may well have been in for more hugs. "Ohgosh, that's excellent! Congratulations!" A /giant/ smile will have to do.

"/You're/ the one makin' /my/ sweet potatoes a sometimes food," Jax accuses, sticking his tongue out at Micah. /He/ bounces up for hugs at this, though, bright and warm with a huge smile of his own. "Oh, wow, that's awesome! How much more do -- I don't know what this process is like, how do you -- when do you find out, how much more do you gotta -- that's so great, honey-honey, that /is/ worth celebratin'. When do you hear for good?" He's still /bouncing/ in his seat when he takes it again.

"Ah, I -- heard. Last week." Lucien's voice is quiet, the faintest twitch of his lips curling them up just for a moment. He curls his fingers around one cup, pulling it close as his expression settles back into neutrality. "I imagine you will be seeing even less of me shortly. I begin rehearsals after Thanksgiving. Eight weeks. Then --" His hand tips upward, fingers spreading. "January."

"Hm. Sounds like /somebody/ don't want my sweet potato an' butternut squash casserole t'morrow," Micah teases right back as he places the other teacups in front of his husband and himself. "Way t'bury the lead!" Okay, tea done. Hugs happening now. At least...leaning form one chair to the next for an arm around the shoulders, so there's less than a /full/ hug to tolerate. "Congratulations, sugar. May see you a little bit less for awhile. /Then/ we're gonna come ogle all your shows. Oh, we should have a celebratory. Thing. With dinner. Prob'ly we got sparklin' cider somewhere maybe." His nose scrunches a little as he thumbs through a mental kitchen inventory.

Jax's eye widens, head shaking emphatically. "I want /all/ that casserole. I want that casserole times infinity.” His hands join together, a pleading gesture together with big puppy-eyes directed towards his husband. His /bounce/ only returns at Lucien's clarification, though, an undiginified /eee/ of pure delight accompanying this news. "Oh my /gosh/. Luci. You don't even look hardly half excited, ain't you excited? I'm excited /for/ you this is such excellent news. That's -- oh my gosh oh my gosh." He'd probably be giving more hugs, but Micah has those down. "That's awesome. /Have/ you celebrated? You gonna celebrate? We should do a thing. You should let us know when's your debut. Do a dinner or -- or somethin'." There's a shimmer of glow around him, bright to match his wide smile.

Lucien's head tips downwards, shoulders briefly tensing as he is subjected to yet more hugs. "I --" A very brief frown pulls at his brows. "Excited. Certainly." The frown vanishes as he lifts his teacup, inhaling slowly and then taking a small sip. "Cider is unnecessary. This tea is delightful. And it is pleasant to see you again. Sans crisis. We're almost making a habit of this now."

"Oh, he is way too good at that," Micah observes, teeth pressed into his lower lip. As he settles back into his seat, he reaches a hand out to pet against the back of Jax's. "Good thing, 'cause I got all the ingredients sittin' already." His head tilts back at Lucien, catching the timing of that frown. "What's wrong, hon?" Though he does nod at Lucien's reassurance that the tea is adequate, lifting his own cup to sip from it. "Won't complain 'bout /that/ habit none."

"Yaygood." Helpfully, Jax sprouts a pricked-up pair of ears, a wagging (bushy! Ringed!) tail, in bright red-brown shading strongly reminiscent of a fire ferret. The furry leg warmers he wears morph into the same colouration. He nuzzles up into the petting, tail briefly wagging. Tail and ears vanish as he picks his tea back up, though his leg warmers stay the same shade. "Y'aright, honey-honey? Y'got an odd kinda way of showin' /excite/."

"Puppycat," Lucien murmurs, quietly amused. His head shakes, dismissing concern with a flutter of fingers. "Odd. Yes. I am aware. Forgive me. I am excited. Perhaps I do not show it quite as I should." He sets his tea down, slowly turning his bare hand up, offering it out towards the other men.

“Fire ferret,” Micah corrects, reaching out to scritch between those newly formed ears. “Like...someone made a red panda/ferret hybrid. Kinda illegal levels of cute. /Might/ be anglin' for belly rubs.” Scritchscritch. “Ain't no should 'bout it, hon. Not ev'rybody's gonna go all tail-a-wag over things. Just. Frownyface was some cause for concern.” It doesn't take much prompting for Micah to uncurl his non-scritching hand from his tea cup (mmm, warm fingers!) and place it in Lucien's.

"Jus' your pet." A very strong /purr/ thrums in Jax's throat at the scitching, his eyes briefly closing. "M'always anglin' for belly rubs, /that/ don't take no guessin'. Do I got a belly? Is it not gettin' rubbed? Then I'm anglin' for rubbin' it." But he puts his tea back down, resting his also warm fingers against the back of Lucien's (together with the overload of too-much-headache and current sluggish-exhaustion that comes with his touch.)

Lucien's jaw clenches, lips briefly pressing together at the touches, though he relaxes again soon after. From him there is quiet. Calm, cool, a faint wash of soothing that ripples out in gentle waves. And then under it, slowly building, something swelling, tingling, a growing bubble of something warm and -- contained. A high not quite peaked. An approaching orgasm not quite tipping over. Muted, distant. "It is there," he says, quietly. "Just –"

Micah's touch is not nearly as loaded as Jax's. Concern for Lucien. Happy-warm feelings surrounding the kitchen and tea and food and company. Warmer thoughts yet directed at Jax. His fingertips trace gently over Lucien's palm. “Still havin' trouble with the feelin' things,” he observes softly. “Has Matt been able t'try t'help at all? Y'said he used t'be able t'mitigate your ability some. I know he's been...busy.” Another twinge of worry.

Jax shivers, curling his fingers more snugly in against Lucien's. "Oh. It's there." There's a very small flush in his cheeks, eye lowering to the table at these feelings. "S'kinda. Neat though like if I was paintin' it it'd be like this. Jewel all -- packaged up ins..." His blush deepens. "... 'pologies, I, uh, I guess maybe for you it ain't, um, like. Maybe you ain't lookin' at it exactly for the. Aesthetic appeal."

A thin smile flits across Lucien's face, eyes dropping away to fix down on the table. "No, no trouble," he assures Micah. "And you are quite alright, Jackson. I do not mind. It is convenient. Lately --" His gaze lifts, slides across the house to fix for a moment out the large windows. He returns in short order to looking at the others, hand slipping out of the other men's just as a brief -- brief! -- thread of something sharp and twinging slips in. "Matt can manipulate the expressions of others' X-genes to quite astonishing extent, these days. The labs -- taught him quite a bit. But I am fine how I am, I think. And he has been busy, yes. Quite. Will continue to be, I suspect. Sera gets worse quite rapidly, away from him. Dr. Toure's formula could help quite a lot."

Micah nods silent agreement with Jax, an echoing dust of blush finding his cheeks in answer to his husband's. “S'a lotta folks comin' out of 'em as say the same,” he confirms of received at Prometheus. “When she's with 'im, is there still...overall deterioration or...?” His brows furrow, mind clouded up with things mentioned during dreams. “I know it's what he--what we--were hopin' it'd be used for. How /is/ Matt doin'?” Perhaps to combat the worry-face, or just that his hand is now free, Micah reaches over and tugs Jax's chair a bit toward his own. Belly in range for rubs, naturally.

"Taught me a whole awful lot 'bout what I can do." Notably Jax sounds more wry than thankful. "Is -- I mean, all the work they done together, that's still -- is she still gonna be able t'get help from that? S'what it was /for/, right? So that should still -- she should still." Jax trails off, eye fluttering closed and his posture unwinding some of its tension as he leans in closer for bellyrubs.

"No. With her powers suppressed she seems fine -- though it is hard to say with confidence. The constant back and forth of turning them off and on seems difficult." Lucien's eyes track towards the stairs, where the children's voices can be heard muffled from above. "Dr. Toure will still be helping her, of course. The side effects can still be rough on her, but he is working on that. Matt," Lucien hesitates only the slightest of moments, "will be working with him again to continue refining it." His forefinger and thumb press briefly at the bridge of his nose. "We really should eat."

“Should still,” Micah reiterates with less of a question in his tone compared to Jax. “Matt...s'workin' with 'im again? What happened there? Matt was pretty broken up over all this last I talked with 'im. Couldn't imagine 'im goin' back to it...” He is quick to hop to his feet, fetching the bag Lucien had brought and emptying its contents onto the table, along with an addition of plates and utensils. Though he sets places for the children, he doesn't force them to come down that minute from their play.

Jax is only a /tiny/ bit huffy when Micah hops to his feet, nose wrinkling when his bellyrubs leave him. "S'pose if it's a choice 'tween that an' -- not havin' help for Sera at all," he speculates uncomfortably. He gets up, too, slipping over to get glasses of water to set on the table.

Lucien shakes his head, slightly. "They talked." He rises from his seat to start serving the stew and rice into each dish. "Communication helped more than conjecture, I suppose."

There isn't much to huff over for long. Full-service cyborg is just trying to get the food to him faster. Delicious food is /almost/ as good as belly rubs, with more of the latter likely to resume at a later time, anyhow. “Was he able t'maybe...get through to 'im at all? 'Bout what he's /doin'/? 'Cause ain't nothin' /finalised/ yet. Or is the compromisin' all on Matt's part?”

Jax settles back at the table, tail and ears sprouting again as delicious food is set in front of him. "What is he doin'?" he asks, quietly. "Cuz he's, um. At the Clinic I see the security, uh. Dr. Toure's got clearance again. Or gettin' clearance again. T'come back. So someone must'a decided – somethin'."

"Is that so." Lucien does sound quietly intrigued by this bit of news, eyebrows raising slightly. "Mmm." He settles back into his seat once food is served, picking up his tea again. "Who is in charge of that decision." It's just a mild curiosity, as he sips at his tea again. "He is making a drug to save my sister's life."

“Oh, I didn't know that.” Micah's twitch of lip and furrowed brow reveal conflicted feelings at the news. “I can only hope...maybe they worked out somethin' /reasonable/. In that case. Would hafta talk t'Io. Sure it was his call.” He also claims his tea for another sip and warmer hands. “I understand that. There's a lot you'll do t'protect your kids.” His gaze is drawn briefly toward the upstairs, the children playing.

"I only know cuz we can see whose got -- valid badges an'. The other guards talk, his is gettin' reactivated." Jax shrugs, teeth scraping against his lip. "No idea what they done talked about or why, though." His eye tracks over towards the upstairs, too, at Lucien's answer, his breath pushed out heavily. "Yeah, but he --" Though here he just quiets, listening to the voices from upstairs. "Yeah."

Lucien closes his eyes, hands tightening around his teacup. He is slow to drain the last of the tea, letting the muffled noises from above wash over him as he finishes it. He's slow, too, to lower the cup back to the table, but by the time he sets it back down there's a very small smile set neatly back on his face. He turns his heat back towards the stairs, voice raised -- /just/ enough to carry. "-- Sera. Spencer. Would you join us for supper?"