From X-Men: rEvolution
Dramatis Personae

Lucien, Matt


"What does the American Theatre Wing know of acting?"


<NYC> Tessier Residence - Greenwich Village

Understated opulence claims this spacious and well-kept townhome, the decor throughout the whole of it of the highest quality and carefully chosen. The front door opens onto the entrance hall, a closet close at hand to receive coats and shoes -- the pale hardwood floors gleam underfoot, unsullied by tracked-in mess from outside. The living room beyond the entrance is all dark woods and pale earth tones, comfortable couches and armchairs and a thick soft rug laid down beneath. Two large and painstakingly aquascaped aquariums flank the entrance to the dining room, with several brightly coloured species of fish within. Most of the rest of the wall space, notably, is taken up with shelves -- shelves crammed with books of every subject and genre.

A study branching off of the main hall is cozy, small, done in pale blues and lined with books as well around the large computer desk and smaller futon, though these rarer books are cased behind glass. Another securely locked door leads to the basement, and another to the full bathroom downstairs. The kitchen connects to the living room; in contrast, it is sleek and modern and well-appointed, stocked by someone who takes their cooking seriously. And takes their alcohol equally seriously -- to one side of the kitchen there is a fully-stocked bar. The back door to the kitchen looks out on a small well-kept garden.

It's late, and the house is quiet but for the soft piping of Leslie Fish's "Avalon is Risen" through the speaker system. Matt has been puttering around the house, feeding the dog far too many treats and himself far too many purple Moon landing commemoration Oreos. He's wearing a blue t-shirt with a cartoon figure reading beneath an arch of books, bracketed by the words "Best Time Machine EVER", and black cargo shorts, his hair even messier than usual. He finally circles back to settle into his armchair in the living room, picking up a library book that had been left on the arm (/The Child Thief/). His laptop is open on the coffee table in front of him, its screen dark with inactivity, and beside it sits a medium sized cardboard box addressed to one Lucien Tessier.

One Lucien Tessier is just dragging himself home, his steps slow as he approaches the house. His mind is easy for Matt to feel, straining through a pall of exhaustion that leaves his fastidious mental processing a little bit slower than its usual. He's slow to unlock the door, too, and to take off his shoes in the front hall. In neatly tailored linen trousers, a mint green short sleeved button down, his clothes are neat but his hair is rumpled and between sweat and lingering traces of makeup he is in bad need of a shower. He stops by the living room first, though, folding his arms against the back of the couch as he sinks against it.

Matt's power unfurls and coils into Lucien's as soon as he's able to reach, gently bolstering the sluggish processes. He rises and goes to the kitchen, returning a minute later with the celadon teapot and two of its matching mugs on a tray, which he sets down on the coffee table as his brother enters. Flèche, who had been trailing him hopefully, loses interest and shoots over to Lucien instead, hopping onto the couch and snuffling at his face, tail lashing enthusiastically. "{Welcome home.} Matt also drapes himself onto the couch, scruffing under the dog's chin. "{How did the performance go?}"

"{She found her way home, again.}" Lucien's eyes droop half-closed, his answer mild and casual, as it has been the hundreds of times by now he's offered some permutation on this reply after performances that ran smoothly. He perks a little bit, first at Flèche and then at the tea. His eyes open, at least, though he only leans more heavily against the couch -- in order to bonk his head down against the pup's as she snuffles at him, scruffing his fingers into her fur. "{When did this one last go out?}"

Matt's smile at the seemingly oblique report about the show is one of genuine pleasure. "{Good, good.}" His reply is warm, not the least dismissive. He picks up the tea pot and fills the cups, handing one up to his brother and taking the other for himself. "{Mmm, about half an hour ago? We had a long walk earlier in the evening. She made friends with a big pile of wrinkles that may or may not have had a dog underneath.}" He pulls up a photo of Flèche executing a textbook playbow to a stout English bulldog whose front paws have left the ground in what was probably intended to be a pounce. "{Oh, and the courier who brought that,}" he says, nodding at the box on the table, "{was /quite/ anxious that I personally ensure you receive it. He seemed to fear it might compromise his duty to even leave it with /me/, but in his defense I can be rather persuasive.}"

"{That could not be a dog,}" Lucien dismisses after a brief glance at the photo, "{where would it breathe from?}" He takes his tea, sips at it slowly as he straightens. He rolls one shoulder and then the other, a stiff slow stretch while he moves around the couch to settle onto its arm. Leaning forward, he sets his cup on a coaster and picks up the box with a curious hum -- that turns dismissive when he glances to the sender. He picks his tea right back up. "{Thank you. I do not envy couriers their jobs. Were we running low on this?}" He lifts the tea cup indicatively as he stands. Briefly winces, stretches again, tucks the box under his arm. "{I am planning a stop Monday, we needed more tung ting and long jing as well.}"

"{I'm sure that they would have also liked to know the answer to that question.} Matt settles back into the couch and takes a slow sip of his genmaicha. "{We've still plenty, but with Desi and Gae both home, it doesn't hurt to have extra. Anyway, I tipped the poor guy well.}" He regards Lucien over the brim of his cup with what most would probably interpret as casual interest. The keen glint of his bright green eyes, however, belies his apparent nonchalance. "{I didn't congratulate you properly, for that--}" The graceful outward twist of his hand indicates the box Lucien carries. "{--but I felt it would be silly to do so when you did not have the actual trophy in hand. I am /quite/ proud of you.}" There's the barest waver in his voice, easily missed, that usually indicates he's suppressing strong emotion.

Lucien has been on the verge of turning to go, but at this he freezes. He takes another slow sip of his tea, leaning up once more against the couch. Within his mind there is a careful shuffling, a repartitioning as he tentatively reassigns priority to several of his background running tasks. He does not look at the box, still tucked under his arm. Just a mild and mildly curious, "{Are you?}"

Matt's free hand has moved on to scritch behind the floppier of Flèche's ears. "{I am.}" Also mild. Then, a touch sheepishly, "{I didn't think you'd like my making a big deal of it, but I was very excited to find out. Not /surprised/, mind you, but excited.}" He lets some measure of that excitement bleed through now. "{/I/ knew you were spectacular, of course, and I don't need anyone else telling me that--but it's thrilling to see it backed up by people who are less biased. Well.}" His gaze flicks up, an aborted eye roll. "{/Differently/ biased.}"

The widening of Lucien's eyes is very faint. More discernible to Matt is the gradual easing of the tight control that regiments /all/ his autonomic functions, suppresses so many of his emotional reactions and keeps them on a carefully even keel. With this quiet internal shift there's something far more and far less chaotic about his cluttered neurochemical processing, a lot of the mental load lifted as his mind slips back into doing what it /would/ be doing anyway. What it would be doing anyway -- still kind of a hectic jumble.

"{It's thrilling,}" he echoes Matt, softly. He shifts the box lower in his grip, tapping at it lightly with his fingertips. "{Thrilling.}" He's looking across the room. Watching the fish in their tanks. Eventually he adds quietly, "{I was surprised.}"

Matt nods, the motion measured, though his smile comes wider and brighter now. "{I expected you would be.}" When Lucien's mental regulation relaxes, Matt does not try to pick it up for him. Instead, he seeks out the sharpest edges of the chaos, where it interacts with his physical and mental exhaustion, and softens those instead, without erasing them. "{That was probably hard for you. /Is/ probably hard for you/.}" He drops his eyes from his brother's face, focusing on his hand instead, though his attention is still palpable to biokinetic senses. "{I do not require you to know how you feel about it precisely, though I would be glad to help you sort it out. I did want you to know how /I/ feel about it, though.}"

"{No, I had practiced my speech.}" Lucien's fingers continue to drum against the box. "{/You/ feel it is thrilling.}" His breathing has quickened, just slightly. He hugs the box to his chest, then offers it out toward Matt, finally looking over to his brother once Matt's eyes have dropped. "{Did you know that it spins? I have not spun it yet.}"

"{I don't mean the speech, although that was very lovely, also.}" Matt's smile turns gentler here. "{I did not know that! It /looks/ as though it ought to, certainly.}" He takes the box, the gleam of excitement returning to his eyes, though he studiously keeps them averted. It takes him a bit of picking at the meticulously applied packing tape to get the outer box open. There's another, thinner cardboard box inside, and within that, finally, a finely crafted wooden box so black it seems to swallow the light. Flèche sits up and noses at this operation curiously, though she is quickly distracted by the discarded outer box, shoving her entire head inside.

Matt carefully pries open the case and lifts the trophy from it's bed of velvet. It is simple in design, a silver medallion held along an axis by a semicircular bracket mounted on a polished wooden base. One face of the medallion features in ornate image of sock and buskin wreathed by the words 'ANTOINETTE PERRY AWARD'. "The League of American Theatres and Producers, Inc. and the American Theatre Wing. Inc," Matt reads aloud, "present, the American Theatre Wing's Tony Award to Lucien Tessier. /Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical, 'Lost!' 2018-2019." He smiles wide and looks back at his brother, eyes focusing on his hand again. "Go ahead, spin it."

As Matt unboxes the trophy, Lucien sinks down into the couch opposite his brother. He watches the process from over the rim of his teacup. Sips slowly, lowers the cup to his knees. "That is all quite a mouthful." His fingers twitch against the side of his cup. "{On your lips it sounded much more laudable.} What does the American Theatre Wing know of acting? What does the League of American Theatres and Producers know of my performance each night?"

Matt snorts. "Less than they /think/, I'm sure." He settles the trophy on the coffee table and picks his tea back up. "Less than /I/ do." He steals a glance at his brother's face over a long draught of tea. "I didn't need them telling me you're great, but it pleases me for others to know it, too, and most are likely to value their opinion a /bit/ higher than mine. And so this pleases me." Setting his empty cup back down, he rescues Flèche from the box. She starts nibbling on the cardboard instead, tail thumping. "{If it's never more than a very prestigious fidget toy to you, so be it--but I would like it somewhere it can be admired.}" He flicks experimentally at the medallion on the trophy and sets it spinning. "{By /me/, at least.}"

There's a flutter, a thrill, that runs somewhere deep within Lucien, sensible to Matt where their powers intertwine. Lucien's expression does not change much, but his heart rate has sped, his pupils slightly dilated as he listens to Matt. As he watches the disc spin. "You like it." His voice has warmed, here. He lets out a slow breath, finishing his own tea and holding the cup tight. "{It /is/ somewhat prestigious --}" In this, there's more hesitation, a stilted distance that vanishes with the next, firmer, more comfortable, "{-- and it spins.}" He doesn't /quite/ wait for it to stop before reaching out, flicking it lightly to start the disc spinning again faster.

"I like it," Matt confirms, brightening to Lucien's incipient excitement. He shifts on the couch, flopping /over/ the dog to lean casually on his brother. With the physical contact, his own elation plain to the other man. "{I suppose I might have /led/ with this,}" he admits with a crooked smile, "{but I wanted to make it clear first I would not be disappointed if you /didn't/ like it.}" He grins wider when Lucien taps the disc, as well, though the flush of his delight beneath it speaks louder. "{We should find a place for it. Perhaps in the morning, when Desi and Gae might contribute?}"

"{I'm glad to know it now.}" Lucien own's delight is a bright and vivid echo of Matt's. His eyes close, and he leans sideways into the couch, a buzz of excitement still humming through him. "{It makes it easier. To know where to place it.}"

His brow furrows when Matt leans against him. His hand lifts, touching lightly to his brother's cheek. "You /do/ have to move. I am in terrible need of a shower."

"{Good, good. I do like to make things easier for you, when if I am not otherwise invested in making things difficult.}" Matt closes his eyes. Then opens them again just to roll them dramatically. "Such as now." But he does move, after all, leaning forward to pluck up the trophy and return it to its case. He scoots over and places the box gently into the crook of Lucien's arm, wrapping his free hand around it. "Congratulations, my dear." He presses a light kiss to his brother's cheek, with an attendant rush of pride and joy. "You can show it off to us all tomorrow."