Logs:X-kids and Hoverboardtown

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X-kids and Hoverboardtown
Dramatis Personae

Gaétan, Astrid




<NYC> Riverside Skate Park - Upper West Side

Tucked between Riverside Drive in Morningside Heights, and the Hudson River, the Riverside Skate Park is a mecca for skaters of all ages. The fenced in area is ringed by trees, and the park itself is actually manned by a city attendant during daylight hours. Skaters must sign a waiver before using the facilities, but anyone can come in just to watch. Also, Friday-Sunday food and drink vendors often circle the park, or come inside to sell their wares.

Inside, the park is packed with skate trick elements. Many can be daisy-chained together in complex routines; ramps, jumps, rails and curbs. There is also a competition-sized half-pipe wide enough to support several riders at once. All of the trick elements are sturdy, and well built, because the city doesn't want to get sued. Skate on!

With cell phone held facing up, Astrid makes her way past the front gate, skateboard strapped to her backpack and waiver having been just signed. The sun is shining brightly, making the chilly 52 feel much warmer. She’s dressed in a black and navy checkered flannel, sleeves rolled up to each elbow, roughed up skinny blue jeans with holes just starting to form across both knees and all black vans. Her usual black beanie m, beginning to fray at the top, is pulled down just far enough to leave a gap between the arms of her black frames. She quickly types out a message on her phone.

  • Astrid: Just got here. Sorry, bus taking it’s sweet time!

The phone is quickly shoved into her front left pocket as a hand pulls up to block the sun from view. It has been way too long since she’s been to a skate park and this place looks awesome. All the trees surrounding the outskirts gives a far more pleasant feel than being under the bridge of a highway. At least the overpass helps keep the rain somewhat at bay. She cannot help but beam with excitement as the backpack is momentarily removed, the skateboard pulled free and dropped to the ground. The gangly teen quickly hopes on the board as soon as her backpack is back in place and kicks off as she keeps her eyes peeled for Gaétan.

There are already a few people gathered in the park, though not so many now in the middle of the weekday as there might be a little later on. Astrid's message is answered in short order, not with a text but a cheerful greeting, a quiet humming sound underneath: "Hey! No worries. Bus always does."

Gaétan's own board is a hoverboard, currently fairly low to the ground, his backpack slung over one shoulder as he approaches; he's in jeans, a ribbed black knit shirt with white stripe across the chest, green Chucks. "Been out here before? Spence showed me this place. It's pretty great. And across town from home, so, double great."

“Hey! There you are!” Astrid enthusiastically replies back, eyes immediately falling upon the hoverboard as her smile widens. Pressure is quickly applied to the back lip causing a loud scraping sound as the wood grinds against the ground until she comes to a full stop. “First time here. Spencer mentioned it when I first got to school, but haven’t been able to make it out until today.” She pauses, eyes squinting slightly through her lenses. “Thanks for meeting up.”

The park receives another quick scan, her head twisting from left to right. “This looks awesome.” There is no hiding the excitement from the tone in her voice. Absently, her right hand pulls up to scratch at the back of her head through the beanie material as her attention falls back on the hoverboard. “I have heard all about those, but this is the closest I’ve been to one in person. They easy to ride?”

"Thank you. My brother's prepping for auditions and I swear all my music is going to start to sound like "The Pinstripes Are All That They See" if I hear him sing it one more time." Gaétan glances down to his board, his eyebrows hiking. "Oh!" He hops down off of it; it lowers to the ground a moment later. "Yeah! Well -- no. The safety's off of this, I should -- uh." He steps on the lip of the board, tipping the other side up to catch it in his hand and fiddle with the underside of it before laying it flat back on the ground. "You want to try it? It's pretty much like skating in 3D. You kinda gotta get the feel of how to shift your weight to make it do what you want but once you get the hang of it it's like -- fwoosh."

“Ha!” Astrid laughs loudly in a single burst. “There is nothing worse than having to hear someone sing the same song over and over again. A little different, but after my little sister discovered my moms’ White Stripe CD...” She pauses, eyes watching as the hoverboard lowers to the ground. “Let’s just say I can’t stand those songs anymore.”

She declines the offer with a quick wave of her hand.. “Thanks, but maybe this isn’t the best place for me to give it my first go.” She shows a toothy grin. “Besides, Spencer would probably kill me if I wrecked this place.” She does a quick mental tally of the small number inside the park with them, her gaze pausing on a group of kids nearby. “And I guess them.” Her voice quickly changes to a mock, overly dramatic stern tone. “That doesn’t mean I won’t hound you down once spring break is over and everyone is back at school.” She can’t hold it for long though and quickly breaks off with a laugh.

Gaétan ducks his head, eyes skimming the park. "Y-yeah, I guess that would be a little bit of a disaster. Maybe more of a big -- open field kind of first time thin. I fell more than few times, learning, it was just a little less..." he trails off, the smile dropping away from his face and his expression a little distant. After a second he shakes his head quick. Taps the board with a toe to send it humming quietly back into the air again. "-- is it hard? Like. Being -- careful all the time?"

Astrid’s laughter continues as her whole body practically shakes from the force. “Yeah, a big open field would be ideal. Or maybe even just a dirt pile. To be extra careful,right?” Her laughter begins to die down, but the smile remains constant. Instinctively, she places her right foot towards the front of her board as the hoverboard pushes upward with a hum. “It’s not so bad, to be honest.” She offers up a shrug. “Usually sticks at the front of my mind when i’m outside the school.” She uses her index finger to quickly tap at her forehead. “I am getting a ton of training lately, so that is really helping with the confidence.” Her tone shifts, sounding almost apologetic, but a smile begins to crack through. “I wonder how Kieow can sleep in the same room with me and actually fall asleep, right?”

"Heh." It's a quiet and uneasy little laugh, his smile a little crooked. "Probably she trusts you by now, right? Haven't blown her up yet, she'd have noticed that kind of thing." His hand rubs at the back of his neck. "In some ways maybe that's almost better than -- I mean some people have powers like. Stuff you can't really. See. Can't even really be sure what to be careful of." He shakes his head quickly, hand dropping back to his side. "Sorry, uh --" It doesn't take much of a push for Gaétan to get his board moving, over toward a bench where he can drop his backpack under the shade of some trees. "I bet if you asked Mr. Salinas he'd pull you up a killer Danger Room skatepark."

“Good point. Getting exploded would be pretty noticeable, wouldn’t it?.” She smiles lopsided, hand reflexively moving to push her glasses further up the beside of her nose. “Yeah, that makes sense.” She nods her head twice before giving her glasses one last push with a nose wiggle. “Is that…” she hesitates, pushing off with her left foot to propel her skateboard toward the same bench. “I mean, is that something you are concerned about?” She bites down into her bottom lip, holding it in place for a spell as the hesitation builds into an awkward space. “Never mind.” She quickly waves the thought away as her backpack is set down beneath the bench. “How have I not thought of asking Mr. Salinas to do that?”

"Maybe. I dunno. I -- just been kinda..." Gaétan begins, but trails off at the wave of Astrid's hand. "I bet you could pull off some wild tricks in a hololdeck skate park. Have like. A skate park on the moon. Go nuts." His smile returns, at a delay. He teeters forward on his board, starting to push it away from the bench. "Well. I can at least show you the basics, meanwhile. C'mon."

“I couldn’t even imagine. If I get Mr. Salinas to agree to that, I’ll convince him to let you in on the session too.” Astrid sets a foot down, stopping her board from rolling any further. “Yes please!” Her eyes slowly raise from the hoverboard to Gaé as her smile fades. “Sorry, I didn't mean to be dismissive… just don’t want to pry into something you’d rather not talk about.” Her smile returns, but softer and to a much less degree than earlier.

She pulls her hand back up, shielding her eyes from the sun as she scans the park, settling on the direction leading straight to the half pipe. “Last one to the half pipe is a rotten egg.” She kicks off on her skateboard before she's finished speaking, convinced that whatever lead she eked out would still be no match for the speed of the hoverboard.