From X-Men: rEvolution
Dramatis Personae

Jackson, Norman, Hive, Dusk


And maybe some insider trading.



Ring ring comes the phone for Jackson, at some point during the evening. Ring, ring, ring! It's for yooooou, Jackson!

Jax answers the phone just before it goes to voicemail. There are noises in the background -- a child's voice, kind of high-pitched laughing: "Obie noooo," though it doesn't sound like a very /strenuous/ no. Too giggly. "H'lo, this is Jax," answers his familiar thick drawl.

"Mr. Holland." The voice is dark. Steady. Something more of a growl than a greeting; like a predator baring its teeth. "We need to talk." Norman Osborn's voice is not easy to miss, nor forget; especially not when it is stripped of all that prized charm and suave sweetness.

There's a pause. Looong pause. The child's voice recedes into the distance. "Good evenin', sir," comes eventually, quieter. "-- We do?"

"Yes." The 's' in that word is extended for /just/ a moment too long; it hints at an almost-serpentine hiss. As if Norman Osborn was /tasting/ the phone. "--about." There's a slight /crinkling/ on the other line; as if Norman was squeeeeezing the phone to the point of bulging its casing: "You need... to report. To your -- 'friends'. At the school. About... a new. Technology." The words are snarled out. As if each one /pained/ him to speak.

"Is this a new technology of yours, sir?" comes the answer. Calm-polite! Very polite.

"...yes," comes the response. A little slower. A little softer.

There's a tick of silence. "Are you gonna tell me what is is, sir, or is this a guessing game?"

Silence follows. For a very, very long time. For so long Jackson /might/ suspect that this is, in fact, going to be a guessing game.


"Anti-telepathy technology. We're going to be able to block the majority of reading and sending -- it will send Oscorp into the stratosphere. We'll soon be--" Norman stops. For a second, his tone was growing lighter, flushed with the excitement of what this means; when he speaks again, it's with a certain slow, steady caution: "--now that we can block telepaths," he continues, "we may develop the means to -- send signals /to/ them." A pause, before: "Painful ones."

Now it's Jackson's turn to be silent for a very long time. "-- Why are you tellin' /me/ this, sir?" he eventually asks, slow and quiet.

"...the blockers likely won't see a public release for some time," Norman continues, failing to respond to Holland's question. "But I /guarantee/ you that they will be installed in high security facilities. Particularly ones where mutants are likely to be... present." He pauses, here; allowing the implication to sink in. "The -- signalers. 'Screechers', we call them. Aren't ready. We're not even sure the technology is feasible. But if they become a reality... it will become possible to identify telepaths. By turning them on, and looking to see exactly who is experiencing excruciating pain."

"Sounds -- pleasant," Jackson says, slowly. "That's gonna be a real boon for Oscorp, I imagine, sir. Y'all could -- probably use the good turn, lately." This is light. It sounds polite, too! "Thank you for the -- heads up."

Silence, again, on Norman's end. Until, finally: "Don't come to rely on it, Mr. Holland." And then... click. Yeah, Norman likes to get the last word in. He's an /asshole/ like that.

  • (Jax --> Hive, Dusk): I think we should buy stock in Oscorp.
  • (Hive --> Jax, Dusk): The fuck. Your portfolio lacking in creep lately?
  • (Dusk --> Hive, Jax): ... Do you remember the part where we're all broke as shit?
  • (Jax --> Hive, Dusk): Find some money! Just trust me on this one.