2010-07-07: A Really Bad Date


Connor_icon.jpg Lucas_icon.jpg Jinx_icon.jpg

Summary: Connor, Jinx and Lucas talk about stuff, then take a very unexpected trip and visit Lucas's Mom.

Date: July 7, 2010

Log Title A Really Bad Date

Rating: PG-13

Xavier Mansion - Gymnasium, The Cove, Hospital, Dark Places

This big room with wooden floors is build with powered students in mind; the entire room is power proof. Blast the walls all you like, they are not breaking. The gym can either be one large room and it also has dividers to make it two smaller gyms. This large Gym has basketball nets, equipment to set up equipment badminton, volleyball, hockey, soccer, gymnastics, fencing, and everyone's favorite, dodge ball.

Jinx came looking for Connor. It wasn't hard to pick up his scent if she waited long enough, and browsed the right corridors. A lollypop in her mouth, she follows the trail of masculine puberty to the gym, and low and behold comes across the boy named Connor. "Hey," she says casually, as if the encounter were completely random. She lets her bookbag slump down over one shoulder to flump against the weight bench before sitting herself, some distance away from the boy.

Currently in the middle of working one of the heavy bags, gloved and dressed down to a school tank top, track pants, and jogging shoes, Connor's hands are blurs as he strikes away at the bag. He's not a boxer, not with the way he changes up between fists, elbows, and knee-strikes, trying to vary things so there is no pattern… and his moves look almost casual to the point of being sloppy. Eventually feeling the eyes on him and hearing the voice, he stops, and settles the bag, turning to look towards the girl, "Hey Jinx… how's things?" Smiling brightly at the company, "Sorry… too smelly for you?"

Jinx rolls the lollypop in her lips. It's cherry, and artificially sweetened to a sugary point of oblivion that masks much of the stench of the room to one with inflated senses. She watches him at the bag, her claws on the stick of her sucker before popping it from her mouth. "Yeah. Smells like… well, it's best that you don't know. Kids must be using this room for more than workouts," she sniffs and pops the thing back into her mouth, drawing her knees together and toeclaws sliding against the floor. "James talk to you yet?"

Connor takes up a towel and a bottle of water from one side, and uncracks it to take a drink, while the towel catches some of the worst of it, and then he takes out a bar of the non-scented, skin-sensitive deoderant and uses it on his pits and chest before he moves a bit closer, but not enough to offend her, "Yeah, he talked to me… it was a bit odd. But he seemed sincere about it. So… is there something to be concerned about?"

She has her lolly, so all is well with the gal who has been experimenting with ways to cover up everyone else's stinkiness for years. She blinks her purple eyes up at Connor slowly. "I don't know yet. Something's up," she muses, her voice a soft murmur as if someone might overhear. "Don't you think it odd that James is one moment throwing people out a window, and the next trying to make a team? Do you believe that he would transform because that thing hit him in the chest? Hasn't he been in the med bay enough that they have a plaque on the wall named in his honor?"

Connor sighs and tilts his head, shaking it slightly as he chuckles and then looks up and around towards certain directions of the room, "Jinx, you're worrying too much… maybe it finally got into his head he needs to learn teamwork with his friends? C'mon… this is James we're talking about… about as constant as any force of nature. Look…" And reaching down, he picks up his gym bag, "How about we get some air real quick… you like Southern food? I know a good Southern food place…"

Lucas has arrived.

Jinx is seated on a weight bench ignoring the weights with a lollypop suspended between her whiskery lips. She scowls up at Connor and snorts softly. "What did he promise you?" she asks the boy as he gives her the brush off. Connor stands ready to make his escape with gym bag in hand. "Power? Money? Friends?" she asks. "All of us got a big old hole in us, and a team seems just the thing to patch that up."

Connor nearly stalks up to Jinx, his lightly sweat-stained scent coming before him well before he reaches her, though despite his seemingly aggravated exterior, his undertone is something calm. He reaches up to try and grab her arm, "Will you stop with the crazy talk?! Why would there BE any reason to be suspicious Jinx? Seriously… you've got to relax about this kind of stuff. Now c'mon… I think you and I ought to get a bite to eat. I know this great Southern place just past down. Owner's from Tennesee or someplace thereabouts. I'm serious… it'll do you some good…" Once more his eyes flick up and around and then widens them like he's trying to nod but can't.

"Do they have soup beans an' corn bread?" asks a soft southern drawl as Lucas steps into the gym. He's wearing a pair of loose, awkward-fitting tattered jeans and a tank top with the Nashville Predators logo on it. He glances between the two of them, tilting his head a little. "You ain't stealin' my make-out buddy are ya?" he asks, though it's not at all clear to whom he is directing it.

Jinx pops that lolly back into her mouth and considers Connor for a long moment with a scowl. She doesn't say anything just yet, relying on other senses to do the talking. Lucas's voice catches her unawares, and her tail floofs a little as he speaks. She turns her head towards the boy. "If you two wanna be alone, I can split. Though you know people make good money selling pictures on the web of guys your age making out. I could finally afford my Camaro."

Connor reaches out and grabs the pair, saying with a smile, "Let's go…" And the affect occurs. The world vanishes as gravity seems to go every direction and no direction at once, and for each of you… there's a long moment that you see into the life as yourself… only as someone else. Lucas in the spotlights at Radio City Music Hall, the sound system echoing his name off in a twang, fans screaming and yelling. For Jinx… a man with metallic skin and blue lips leans over her, and grins once with jagged fangs, almost purring out the words, 'Yes… you'll do nicely'… only for it all to vanish as the three reappear in the middle of the woods between Salem and the mansion, standing next to a small brook in the shade of the trees.

Jinx chokes and coughs as she reappears on the other side, her fur spiked up and fuzzed out like a cat in winter. She looks positively floofed by the interlude inbetween. "The hell, Connor?" she sputters, sucking air into her lungs and trying to chill her act all at once. "Oh dammit! I lost my sucker!" she laments sorely, looking around. She only hopes it is not stuck in her tail. That would be a horrible mess. "So you got something to say… I get that. Where the hell are we?"
Lucas looks around, but is strangely, not seeming to be affected by what he saw. "This is… not a restaurant…" He furrows his brow a bit.

Connor takes a couple steps away from you both, dropping his bag and slicking his hands through his hair, before he turns around, "We're four miles outside of the school grounds, along the brook that goes off the lake and into town. Are you both MENTAL?!" And he turns, throwing his hands wide, "James is on the security detail for the place… he's got access to the comm tower AND the security systems as needed for the job… anything you both say could've been caught. GET IT?" Giving you both a hard and begging look.

Jinx gets right up into Connor's face, her ears flattened back. "Who gave you permission to grow a spine, huh? Like I care! Maybe he should hear it!" she hisses right back into the teleporter's face, her breath fortunately cherry scented. Her tail lashes, still poofed like an angry feline. "This whole thing stinks!"
Lucas looks back and forth between them, and then makes a little confused face. "Um… He should hear what?" He cocks his head a little, "Ah was just gonna ask for your help… why should… Why is that a secret?"

Connor glares at Jinx a long moment and then he moves off to one side and goes to sit down on a downed tree, "He touched me… not like that either… he cupped my face, touched a claw to my chin… that's not like him. This isn't James behavior… he's acting like he's… I don't know… something's off. The moment before the harpoon hit him, he started calling out someone's name… Ahab's name… Roderick something or other. But then it hit. Lucas… I think you know more about what's happening." Getting back up he walks over to the blonde, "You know that moment where you figure out who's really your friend? This is it. Eat whatever's got your head locked up in fear and TALK."

Jinx looks back at Lucas. "This is about James. I'll help you if you want, but I am pretty useless unless you want a shag rug for guests," she ripples with a shiver, her fur flattening slightly. A hand rises to comb her claws through her hair. She looks at Connor and silently wonders if someone has put crazy juice in the whole boy's dorm's water supply, since no one's being much like themselves. "Connor, what…." she shakes her head and looks between the boys, her hands sliding to her hips with a long sigh. "I wish I liked girls. All you guys are nuts."

Lucas tilts his head at Connor, opening his mouth, but the stops when Jinx speaks. He sighs, and says to her, "You have the most important power Ah coulda ever needed. Don't sell yourself short." He looks at Connor, "An' you need to relax offa this idea Ah'm some kinda pussy." He shoves his hands into his pocket. "Ah figured this out, an' gettin you two to go with me to Chatt was kinda part of my plan for all of this…" He shakes his head, "Christ, Ah'm a boy. Ah ain't a retard." He looks at Jinx, then Connor, "That stab wound got James possessed by a 17,000 year old entity. This entity is blackmailing me to help him."

Connor shakes his head once and says, "It was in him before that, Lucas… Jinx…" Looking back and forth he says softly, "I confessed my feelings to him a couple months back… and for one fleeting moment, his stance, everything about him was different. He called me… 'my dear'. I knew something was wrong then. Something was also off when he approached me. He asked me to keep an eye on you Lucas, to tell him any weird behavior." Turning back to Jinx, he sighs, "I'm sorry if I was a dick earlier… but I think when James got harpooned… it did something to him, and let whatever this was out finally. It's gathering us… James' friends. One by one, but for what, I'm not sure. That's WHY we have to play along. Until we know why it's gotten him, and what it can do… anything we do might endanger James' life."

Jinx blinks. This school gets stranger and stranger all the time. "What?" she asks, very succinctly. Her thumbs hook into the waistband of her skirt, drawing it downwards over the swirling white patches at her hips. It makes a lot of sense in a crazy sort of way. "How do possessions work? Is it like the movies where you have to get a priest to exorcise you or something?" She asks, lifting a brow. Her tail sways behind her in a slow undulating curve. "If you want to play along, I insist on knowing how to stop it in case someone else gets the mojo."

Lucas shakes his head, "Ah don't know how to stop it yet. But he's trying to make a team so he has a squad to help him achieve his goal. We'll have to fly somewhere, because gettin' you," he points at Jinx, "to learn to fly the bird was really important. He claims he's in the Hellfire Club. Does that mean anything to either of y'all?"

Connor shakes his head, "Internet rumors mostly… super-elite rich club… if anyone's going to know anything about it, it would be senior staff… they've been around longer. And as for learning to fly… well…" He shrugs a bit, "Once you've got access to the sub-basement hangar, and can take off… you could go anywhere… and there's one of a hundred black market groups that could pay out easy on the tech they have here." Hands going into his pockets, the rabbit-nervous scent of his stress piques up once more, "Robyn possesses people, he'd know better…" But suddenly he stops, and looks at Lucas, "This doesn't make sense… why does whatever this is need Jinx to fly? I can take anyone here anyplace on the planet with the right image."

Jinx's eyes go wide. "I get to fly a jet?" she asks, the deal suddenly seeming a whole lot sweeter. Almost enough for her to overlook the other stuff. But Connor has a point. "Why did it possess James, and not Connor? Maybe that spear triggered something. A lock or whatever. Should we just go to staff about this?" she wrinkles her lip as she asks, never being one for so-called authority figures. "We're just kids. Maybe he thinks we're easily manipulated."
Public> Max's codename is Commander Cool.

Lucas looks at Connor, "Anywhere you have an image of," he repeats to the lad, with some clear indication in his tone that therein lies the key. He looks at Jinx, "Ah tried to tell Kenta. He's the only professor here Ah even halfway trust, let alone like. He didn't get it." He looks back at Connor, "He wants me to join the Hellfire Club." He shakes his head, "Ah don't know about that, but Ah do know whatever he's up to is supposed to free him from James' body. But the subtext he's sendin' is that it'll make him the leader or president or whatever of the Hellfire Club. Take what they want and lay to waist those that would get in their way, he said." He sighs, "He also… has a power… like, a life drain thing…"

Connor frowns slightly as he looks back and forth, "There's someone else we can trust. We can trust Rashmi. She's living off-campus now, but she wants people to visit anyways while she's in law school. If we get her in on this, she can help us… with the staff… with the issue. And she knows James better than any of us, except perhaps Robyn." Walking over to Jinx, he smiles softly, "Sorry for scaring you back there… I just… I didn't want him coming after you both because of it…"

Jinx's eyes shift to Connor. "And we're supposed to go along with this?" she asks, incredulous. It is doubtful that Lucas is lying, and he doesn't stink like anything other than teenage boy usually does. "This sounds really dangerous. I think we need a game plan and I am not sure how Rashmi can really help, sorry. If an ex student gets believed more than current ones, then we're already screwed."

Lucas sighs, "Look, Ah'm ready to take this all the way, whatever the cost. But Ah need y'all's help first. Even if'n ya get off the plan right after…" He looks at Jinx, "Will you help me?"

Connor's hands slip out of his pockets as he looks back and forth, "Don't have to ask here. He's my friend… and so are you both. And Jinx? Lucas is right… don't sell yourself short for a moment. You've got the same talent Rashmi has if you tap into it. You're a cool head under pressure, and you know the right things to say." Then he shrugs once more and reaches out, his bag floating up to his hands so he can sling it over his shoulder, "Sorry about being a dick, Lucas… you just… well… you're not a pussy. You were never a pussy. So… opened it yet?"

Jinx looks back at Lucas and shrugs. "Yeah, sure? I am all about the help. That's what we do here," she smirks and looks at Connor. "You out of here? We'll have to talk about this more. But for now, what? Play like it is Happy Fun Team Gogo?" She looks between the guys for some kind of agreement before the menage au tois splits.

Lucas nods, "Of course Ah did. It's amazin', dude," he says, with a grin. Then he reaches into his pocket, unfolding a piece of paper. It has a color photo printed on it of a football field, which he holds out towards Connor. "This is the football field at my high school." He looks at Jinx, "Ah just need you to come with me an' do what you did to me last night. It's not a big deal, but it's important. Do you have an image inducer?" he asks. Then he glances at Connor, "Ah'm workin' on a plan for James. Just gimme a few days, okay?"

Connor takes the photo, and then folds it up and puts it away in his pocket, "Done. Tomorrow I'm going to the mall, I'm buying all three of us pay as you go cells. Off the school grid. From now on… no conversations on campus. If you want to talk about this, text by the phones, or we meet off-site. The story is about today that we're talking about doing a seperate team uniform for this… we want to surprise him with it. If we get the others into this, they get the same deal. Be careful about being alone around him at this point… listen for leading questions, and when you can, play along. I've already got a little monkey wrench in the works. I told him a good round-out for the team would be Heather."

Jinx nods her head. "Yeah, I have it…" she reaches up to her ear, and taps one of the glittering earrings that hangs there. Instantly, the form of the skunk blurs into the shape of your average, everyday degenerate teenage girl. She sniffs and reaches into her pocket fishing out another lollypop. "High School? Okay. I can do that. But you are so owing me a chocolate malt afterwards if I have to dress in this getup," she waves a hand over her tank top and skirt getup. Her human form has dark hair with purple streaks in the overlong bangs. "Heather… is she the time one?"

Lucas does a bit of a stare at Jinx once she's human. His eyes take all of her in. Yup. She has breasts. And yup. He looked. He gets a slight little half smirk, and then looks at Connor. "Ah don't know Heather that well, 'sides her bad taste in music. Are you tellin' her? Do we trust her?" He looks at Jinx and grins, "An' we ain't goin' to high school. Just teleporting there." He pulls a second sheet of paper from his pocket, it's also folded, and he hands it to her. "Program your inducer so you look like this girl." On the paper, when Jinx opens it, is a photo of a young girl, about 17, with long blonde hair. She's pretty, and looks happy.

"Heather comes off as being odd, but it's the nature of her powers. She's slightly off in time… which is why she can respond like she does in tape recorder. But she's also a strategist. A player and a thinker. When whatever is inside James sees her potential, and tries to manipulate… well… that's a surprise that will make it all the more fun. Think of her as a wild card, " Connor says with a smile, tilting his head to look at Jinx once more, "I think you look good like that… though I'd up the goth factor a little. Blame Robyn… he's a bad influence for fashion." Stopping finally he says, "Anyways… Lucas… you're in charge. I'll back you as far as you want… but understand, I've got no truck with pulling you up short when I think you've gone past the line in the sand. I think the same goes for Jinx too."

Jinx's lip raises as she looks at the girl. "Uh. Okay," she says softly. She lifts her hand to her ear to tune into the correct visual frequency for the image, until she gets a reasonable facsimile. She sulks a little. "If this is something weird, I am so gonna make you throw up on yourself," she grumbles lightly. "This is serious business, guys. But whatever. Let's do this thing." She sniffs and braces herself for the future.

Lucas nods at Connor, "Ah don't need to be in charge, bro. Ah ain't a leader, just… Let's just keep our heads straight an' be careful. Ah don't want anyone to get any more hurt than we have to." He smiles, and then looks at Jinx. He didn't expect her to reset her inducer on the spot, and he just kind of stares at her. For a long moment of silence. Then, slowly, he says, without taking his eyes off her, "…it, um… no, it's… it's not weird…"

Connor rubs the back of his neck, and then exhales softly, "I've got a change of clothes in my bag here… give me a few to get into something a bit more normal, and we can head out now if you like." And with that he moves off and away into the shade of a rock, pulling off his shirt and leaving the two for the moment…

Jinx glowers at Lucas. Okay, it's already weird. She reaches up to fiddle with her inducer again and back she goes to angry teen. "Yeah, maybe I better wait," she murmurs and looks between the guys. As strong as she is, she is not one to fight for leadership. It smells too bad anyways. She nods to Connor as he moves off. "Should I ask?" she looks to the spell-struck Lucas.

Lucas finally looks away, glancing off to where Connor is changing, watching that for a moment instead. He scratches the back of his neck, and shrugs, "Sorry… She, um… We're goin' to see my maw, an' you need to be someone we can get in there. Ah just…" He looks at Jinx again, "Sorry. It ain't weird. Ah just ain't seen her in a long time. That's all."

After a couple minutes, Connor returns in his normal clothes and has even taken a little something and run it through his hair to neaten himself up. Once he steps up to the others, he looks back and forth once more, and then smirks softly before he puts his hands on both your shoulders, "Let me know when you're ready… Jinx has been through a portal, but you haven't Lucas… I can't guarantee what you see will be pleasant. It also helps to exhale before going through."

Jinx thinks that she is owed far more than food, suddenly. She swallows a lump in her throat, but she did say she's help. "Okay," she agrees. And, a portal. Jinx's favorite thing in the world, next to gum in her hair. She eyes Connor, getting the feeling he knows far more about this than she does, and becomes naturally suspicious. "Okay, let's go."

Lucas looks at Connor and shakes his head, "No worries. You ain't the first teleporter Ah've been with." He looks at Jinx then, and just offers, "Thank you." And then he looks at Connor. He takes a deep breath, exhales, and nods.

Connor shakes his head and moves forwards to a spot and a glow azure ball of energy appears in his hand. Pushing it forwards into the air, he seems to vanish in a wave of water that ripples the air. Taking the note back out with his other hand, he opens it and looks down, focusing on it as he grips at nothing… and the strain and focus cause the spot to begin to glow. After a moment, that glow whirls outwards, expanding into a six-foot diameter pool of blue-green power, shimmering like water. Stepping back, Connor huffs for breath softly, and motions towards it, "Portal's up… I have to go last."

It's a really cool power. Really, it is. Jinx hesitates before leaping through, a final gesture holding down her short skirt to avoid flashing everyone. Not having fur makes everything a little more revealing.

Lucas watches her go, then he glances at Connor. "She almost makes me wanna be a furry," he says with a goofy smirk. "Thank you, Connor." And then he turns, and leaps through…

"Why do they always jump the first time?" Connor mumbles to himself as he takes a couple more breaths and then steps through as well. What Jinx has seen before but Lucas experiences for the first time… you're in space. Stars around you while the infinite expanse and cold of space takes it's grip. The world goes white in the eyes of the traveller, as once more, like the teleport, another life is seen… another possibility unfolds, but this time, it can be felt, as if you are inside that life. It's forever in a minute… Jinx saying 'I do' to a guy she barely ever talked to in High School… Lucas feeling his nuclear fire in his hand ready to punch down on what looks like Beast, but a darker form, even as the demonic face laughs and taunts him. Then… all are deposited on the football field… Connor and Jinx walking… but Lucas' leap carrying him with the same velocity as he entered with.

Jinx reaches up to twiddle her ear and transform once again into the girl that makes Lucas' head stop working straight. Her hair runs out long and blonde, and she looks like the picture, more or less, as long as no one stares real close. She shivers at the image and rubs her arms a little as the grass of the field crunches beneath their feet. "Can't you make nicer pictures, Connor?" she asks the boy. "That's like some unfunny funhouse."

Lucas bursts from the portal, tumbling to the ground. He rolls, and in a surprisingly graceful moment, emerges from the roll back up on his feet. He looks around. It's night time, in the wet heat summer of Chattanooga, Tennessee. The lights on the field are off, and the school building nearby looks very old and crumbling, but freshly painted. There are signs identifying it as the Chattanooga Magnet School for the Arts and Sciences. Lucas looks around, smiling a bit, before noticing Jinx again. He stares another second, and then shakes it off. "Okay… Um…" He looks around towards the treeline on the far end of the field. "We head that way three blocks to Erlanger." He looks at Connor, then Jinx, before turning, and just beginning to walk.

The portal vanishes with a rush of air and a sensation of the hairs on the backs of both your necks standing up, Connor having stepped through. Wordlessly, he just nods, his eyes haunted as he follows along behind the others… a certain paleness to his features, and Jinx can smell the reek of terror in him.

Jinx frowns as she smells Connor. Reaching out, she places a hand on his shoulder. Calm like a cool bath on a hot day washes over him, though of course if he chose to ignore the suggestion, he could. She is not exactly trying to make anyone feel any particular way. She makes a mental note to ask him later. "Do I have a name, Lucas?" she asks from the skin of a girl she doesn't know.

Lucas doesn't look at her as he leads the way, "Sam." He keeps walking, and then asks, "Ever tried to do two people at once?" He glances at Connor, his face caring and concerned, checking up on his friend as they make their way down the sidewalk of a four lane, one-way street, towards a giant, ten story brick building marked, Erlanger Hospital.

Connor follows along with the pair, shadowing behind for the moment, the touch of Jinx settling him enough to appear normal for the others. But there is a brief stop at a soda machine in the stadium, grabbing two Dr. Peppers. One downed immediately and then the other sipped as he continues along with the group, "Thanks. Where do you guys want me."

"Uh, no? Let's see what happens…" she reaches over and puts a hand on Lucas' shoulder too. The same feeling oozes down from the point of contact. She walks along between them, just three buds hanging out on the way to the hospital. "Your mom's in the hospital?" she asks Lucas, askance. She also looks to Lucas to answer Connor's question. "When the situation isn't so tense, you guys gotta let me practice on you. I would love to find out if I could do different things with both hands."

Lucas gasps again at her touch, his step faltering just slightly. There's a little puff sound that comes from his gloves, but he doesn't acknowledge it. "That… That's working here," he tells her. He looks at Connor, "If'n they'll let you in, you're welcome to. Just… She don't know about us. What we are." He looks at Jinx, and he smiles, glancing at Connor and waving his thumb Jinx's way, "That's what SHE said." He laughs, but it does excite him a little.

Connor is a bit calmer now, and then gives a shrug, "Dude… if they say no? Just flash me a pic of the hospital room… I'll hop right in." Bit that said, he takes another sip from his drink, and offers some to Jinx as well, "Caffiene, helps take the edge off. Unless you're scared you'll catch something." The final comment gets a roll of his eyes, but also a bit of a chuckle.

Jinx takes the soda and indulges in a sip before handing it back. "Don't worry, rabies doesn't kill everyone it infects," she smiles sweetly, though her joke is probably less funny in a human skin. At his crack, Jinx drums her fingers on Lucas's shoulder, sending a shiver of warning suggesting through him. "Whatever you say."

Lucas jumps, "Hey!" He laughs, and scowls a little at Jinx. "Easy!" He laughs a little more, and then leads them on. They head inside the hospital, which is actually about six ten or fifteen story buildings all connected with a labyrinthine collection of underground corridors to create a giant hospital campus that's easy to become lost in. All of the elevators are lettered, and Lucas easily navigates them to the one marked, N. They head in quiet up to the tenth floor, emerging in an intensive care ward. Lucas walks over to the desk, leaving the two others alone a moment, speaking with a nurse. Finished, he walks back to Connor and Jinx, "We can all go," he says softly. He's scared, and there's a frightened little boy look in his eyes that no one needs Jinx's nose to spot. He turns, and leads them down the hall, into the ICU.

At the sight of the ICU Connor reaches up and puts a hand on Lucas' shoulder, and without really saying a word he squeezes and lets go, letting the message convey itself. The further along the threesome go, the further he hangs back now so that the pair can be seen as that, taking a moment to keep an eye on the small details… otherwise appearing like a friend tagging along with a young couple.

"Wait," she calls after Lucas. Her hand reaches out to encircle his wrist and she pours on her finest calming mojo brew. She glances back at Connor, to see if he needs a hit as well. "This is incredibly awkward," she murmurs, but lets it go. As Sam, she smiles to the patients in the beds in the ICU. She tries to keep her own anxiety to herself, insulating herself as she does best.

Lucas takes a deep breath when she touches him that time, but otherwise, keeps walking. He takes them into a room where a woman in her early forties lays on a bed. She looks uncomfortable, attached to more machines than a woman her age deserves. There are only a few wisps of white hair on her head, her mostly bald scalp covered loosely with a Predators baseball hat that looks to have seen a lot of wear. There's a family photo in a frame on the table near the bed of a healthy, brown haired version of this woman, with a man and Lucas, probably taken four years ago. She seems to be asleep, but her shallow breathing is labored and her brow creased in discomfort. Lucas walks straight up to her, pulling a chair out and sitting down beside her. He looks at Jinx, and he places his right hand on his left glove cuff. "Do it to me," he says, his eyes vulnerable.

After just a look inside, Connor moves back outside of the room, and closes the door. Sitting down in an orderly's chair in the hallway across from the door, he sips at his pop for a moment, his look somber. With his own demons from the teleport still haunting him somewhat, the image inside seems to have left him with as neutral an expression as possible. The can is empty long after he's done sipping, but he continues the mechanical motion… as if that alone somehow calms those nerves of his.

Jinx looks between the woman on the bed and Lucas. Obviously, this is his Mom. Her lips part in a soft gasp and she falters, wondering just what to do. The smell of the hospital is overwhelming. Death, blood, sanitizers, medicine, cancer. Connor isn't even there to look to to support anymore. Her hand leaves Lucas' skin a moment while she gets a grip. The girl takes a long breath and places her palm on the back of his neck, where he can move. She remembers what she did at the lake, the calm she exuded when Lucas was freaking out. She tries to block out the scents around her and wishes for a lollypop like the one she lost in Connor's Unworld. She shuts her eyes. Her power wells in a suggestion that is as strong as a command, a washing shimmering miasma of tranquility.

This time, Lucas doesn't gasp. He just pulls the glove off. He pauses, looking at his perfectly normal hand, and then quickly pulls the other glove off, sitting them both in his lap. He reaches for her hand, stopping just short of touching her for the first time in so many years. There's a deep inhale, and then he wraps his hands around her fragile hand. "Maw," he says, but it's barely audible as he nearly loses all of his composure, blinking away a few tears that betray his manhood, falling down his cheeks. "Maw," he says once more. She moans a little, turning her head. When she sees Lucas, she smiles slightly, and offers, "Luke…" She looks at Jinx then, and her smile widens. "Oh my… You brought Samantha…" She seems quite happy at that. "He doesn't bring you around no more to see his mother… What kind of… what kind of boy are you dating? You have to train him better, Samantha…" She chuckles, but it becomes a cough that clearly gives her some pain as she winces.

Connor continues to sit outside of the room, not hearing the conversation as he moves off and down the hall for a moment and gets something to drink from another vending machine, returning to the seat with that, and a package of fruit gum in his pocket for Jinx to have. Sighing once, he checks his watch, and then his phone for messages… seeing nothing, he continues to try and distract himself for the moment with a phone app game.

Jinx's eyes flash open, and she smiles at the lady in the bed. Oh, Lucas will owe her for *years* for this. Her fingers curl tighter on the back of his neck. "I've been pretty busy, ma'am," her face accent is truely horrible. "Ah hope you don't mind me keeping Luke busy," she does a bit of the soft shoe. She watches Lucas's hand, and grits her teeth into that cheery fake smile as her happy powers flow forth like a bleeding rainbow parade. She has a thought and leans down to Lucas, her breath tickling her ear.

Lucas glances at Jinx, then back at his mother. "Maw… Ah can't… We can't stay long. We have to pick up Connor at the airport… He went to see his grandma in Massachusetts for the weekend. Ah just wanted to stop in… Sam wanted to say hi…" He looks at 'Sam,' a grateful look in his eyes, then back at his mother. Lucas' mom nods a little, "It's late… Ah don't sleep well anymore, so… Ah just sleep lots…" she says, with another cough. She looks at Jinx again, "You need to… lock this one down, girl…" She grins, "Luke won't ask you… You'll have to ask him…" Lucas shakes his head, "Hey! Don't encourage her, Maw!" His mother laughs a little, again falling into a cough, before looking at Jinx again. "You haven't come in a long time… Don't wait… so long next time…" Lucas looks over his shoulder at Jinx, and he whispers, "Can you do her? Help her sleep?"

Connor stands up eventually, and moves to the other side of the hall, leaning against the wall, one hand crossed, the other holding the can as he looks down for a moment. He even then puts his heel up on the wall in a signature pose as he tilts his head and looks towards the window of the door.

Jinx nods her head. She keeps a hand on Lucas, and squinching her brows, leans forward to touch the dying lady's hand. "I won't be so long next time. You sleep now, ma'am," she says softly. Jinx's powers are fresh and new, and the calm shifts to a deep sleepy suggestion, as if a giant thanksgiving meal, a warm bed, and a lover to share it with all descended at this very moment. She cannot discriminate between who gets the impression, and who does not, so she pinches the back of Lucas' neck to help him stay awake.

Lucas squirms a little, and quickly grabs his gloves, pulling them on so he can stand and pull away from Jinx. He watches the two of them for a long moment, as his mother slowly settles into a calm, relaxed sleep. He looks at the monitors, and even the lines on the machines seem to have settled into something more stable and filled with ease. He moves to the end of the bed, and pulls her medical charts from the holder. He studies them intently while Jinx gives his mother a good start on a solid sleep. He finishes, returning the folder, and leans against the wall to watch the two girls. He just watches in a happy wonder. After about ten minutes, his mother seems in a deep sleep, and he nods at Jinx, motioning her for them to sneak back out. He opens the door, and steps back into the hall, wiping his eyes as he does so Connor doesn't see he's a big baby momma's boy. "Hey," he regreets Connor. "Sorry. We can go now." And then he just begins walking towards the elevator.

Jinx leaves the room when she makes sure everyone's safe. Outside the door, she stalks after Lucas and Connor, her hands curled into light fists at her side and her jaw gritted tight. She glances at Connor hotly. "Yes. Let's." Responds the face of Unknown Sam.

Connor reaches out and taps Lucas in the belly, "Sure. Back to school." And then goes to lead the way back out of the hospital and take the pair back home, hands in his pockets and his head bowed a bit the whole time…

Once in the elevator, as the lift moves them down towards the first floor, Lucas finally speaks again. He looks at Jinx, and he says, "You can look like someone else again if'n you want…" He looks down for a second, then back up at her. "…Thank you." He looks back at the doors again. "Both of you…"

Connor grabs onto Lucas' and Jinx's hands, and smiles, "Everyone ready for the crazy train?"

Jinx stares straight ahead at the elevator doors as they descend to the lower floors. She doesn't move to change her face from whatever girl this happens to be to Lucas and his family. Staring at herself in the reflection of the stainless steel, she sees someone she doesn't know. Someone she isn't. It's oddly more unnerving than seeing herself as a giant skunk. Maybe she is furry after all. When the doors open, she is out like a shot, and finding her way towards fresh clean air with the gift of her nose. Once outside, she reaches up to flick the image inducer and shimmers as the grumpy teen comes back into view. Her skirt flicks and sways against her hips as she marches towards the football field, not caring so much if they are following or not. Once there, she rounds on Lucas and looks him in the eye. Her hand lashes out in a quick hard slap to his face.
"I know that was important to you, and I am sorry you gotta deal with this shit on your own. It ain't fair and I can see that you are hurting in some powerful ways…. but so help me god," she steps in, so that her breath is inches from his face, her lips curled into a snarl. "If you *ever* do that kind of shit to me again, I will kick you so hard you'll need to use the girl's room forever,"
With that, she turns, and grabs Connor's hand. "Ready!" she responds cheerfully.

Connor cannot help himself as he lets go of Jinx's hand for a moment and fishes the small packet of gum from his pocket and hands it to her, before leaning in and giving her a kiss on the cheek before whispering to her, "You're a good friend." Since the delay out to the football field precludes the need for a teleport, he steps forwards and begins prepping the portal for the way home.

Lucas takes it. He stands there, unmoving for a moment as his cheek turns red from her slap. His brow furrows just slightly, and he simply takes Connor's hand as well. He looks at Jinx, then, and quietly, flatly, simply states, "You have the most powerful, important ability of any mutant Ah have ever met. Ah hope one day you see that like Ah do, Jinx." He doesn't say anything else, waiting for the portal to take them home.

Jinx lifts her chin. Defiant, isolated. That is what keeps you safe after all, isn't it? She whispers thanks to Connor as he gives her the gum, folding it into her hand. She looks at Lucas hotly. She will forgive him, no doubt. Maybe someday she will learn who this girl was that she played. But right now, she wreathes herself in her anger rather than face the horrible idea of what age does to people, and that they too will someday age. Mortality is a terrifying thing to a teenage mutant. Better to die in a fireball than alone with a machine. "Maybe," she says. "Let's go home."

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