2010-07-08: An Olive Branch


Emma_icon.jpg Laura_icon.jpg

Summary: Emma is unexpectedly kind to Laura

Date: July 8, 2010

Log Title An Olive Branch

Rating: G

Xavier Mansion - Living Room

Cream colored couches and chairs are placed among end tables and a coffee table. A large entertainment center covers one of the blue walls. The windows are set back a bit creating comfortable window seats for those who want to read.

Close to midnight in the mansion and the living room was deserted. Laura sits at one of the window seats, knees drawn up to her chest, she stares out over the grounds, forehead pressed lightly against one window pane. She inhales quietly once and then expelled the breath outwards, whatever tension was in her wispy frame seemed o leave her. Relaxing for the first time today, she was enjoying just sitting there, not having to try and interact with people, or try to understand the meaning in other's words that went unspoken. No need to think, though random thoughts flitted through her head. Her talk with Star a few days ago. Her spar with Connor. The fiasco in Central Park the night before. Hunting the cult. No real solid line of thought, just bits and pieces of the last few days. Wearing a charcoal t-shirt and dark navy cutoffs, and her ever present combat boots, Laura merely sat there taking a moment just to herself.

From behind you, heeled feel clack on the floor as Emma approaches from the main hallway. She does not move to enter your personal space, but instead stops at a point to lean over one of the couches, her hands together as she balances over the back with her elbows. Her lips purse softly for several moments before she finally says with a rather rich grin, "Penny for your thoughts, Miss Kinney?"

Whatever amount of tension that had left Laura returned with the sound of those heels approaching the living room. She stiffened, her shoulders bunching up some as she continued to stare out the window. "If you are so curious, find out for yourself." she replied dully. Her 'me' time clearly at an end for the moment, Laura stretched her legs out, booted feet pressing up against the other wood paneled side of the window seat. "I do not believe I have broken any rules tonight, Emma. Is there something you wanted?"

Those lips purse together once more, and a small frown creases her lips before Emma's left eyebrow perks up for a moment while she says, "You're rather wonderfully cheerful as usual. Child, this belligerence serves no purpose. Contrary to what you might believe… I do not deeply probe… yes, I detect surface thoughts, but those cry out loudly to be heard more often than not." Pushing off the couch, she walks closer with that smooth and confident step, the Chanel leading the way before she stops a few feet away and sits on the arm of the couch, leaning back on it, "But yes… there IS in fact something I want. However… I am also giving you something in return." A little smile twitching on both sides of her lips as her eyes shade in a blink.

Finally turning over-bright emerald eyes on the professor, dark brow inched upwards. "What is it that you want, exactly?" she asked, her interest piqued despite herself. Her lips pressed into a tight line, her brow furrowing over slightly as she leaned back against the cool glass of the window. "And despite what you seem to think of my mood, and attitude, I cannot be changed over night, so…" a thin shoulder arched up and then fell back into place, her words trailing off, wishing Emma would just drop it. She was making a greater attempt at 'acting normal', though she would probably rather die then admit it to the teacher.

Emma actually chuckles a bit, letting it trail off into almost a hum as she reaches into her pocket, where she comes out with a new-model touch-screen phone. This she holds out to Laura, "I've noticed you're lacking a school phone… so I've brought you one for the interim. We're negotiating for new model phones for everyone on campus, so we have spares. This one however… is not on the school account. It is a private account I've opened under your name. So… if anyone goes into it, the company can tell you who it was. Unlimited minutes, text, internet… everything for a girl on the go." If not accepted, she then sets it on close by for you to take should you choose.

Laura digs her battered and abused Motorola from her back pocket. The front screen cracked to the point of being completely useless, and as she flipped it open a few numbers were missing from the keypad. Not to mention the scratches and dings that made the phone quite the eyesore. "I have a phone." came her reply, though one small hand extended to take the one from Emma. "Why are you giving me a private phone?" she asked, one eyebrow arching again, as she studied the thing for a moment before setting it don on the window seat beside her. "I did not think that was strictly allowed. GPS for security and all that other nonsense they blather about here." She turned luminous green eyes back up towards the professor, as she twirled the stolen cell between her fingers, watching Emma expectantly for an answer.

Emma creases her lips into a smirk finally, and then tilts her head to one side so that her hair can cascade down across her front and over one eye, "School is not in session, so this is nothing against the standard protocols. And… you value your privacy. If you're still here when the new school years begins, you will receive a school-standard phone with all the specs requires for all students. But…" And she taps the couch with one carefully manicured fingernail, "…I understand your feelings. You have an independent streak, one which chafes under the regulations we place upon you. Your case is special. Your life was ripped from you and perverted… and there is a part of you that is fighting to take back what was taken. I don't have to read minds to see that, Miss Kinney."

Her lips pursed together, and she looked down to study the new cellphone, causing her hair to down in a heavy curtain across her face. Not really a fan of cell phones in general. Laura only had the one she had because it was necessary for the mission. Well, and she had one or two other people's numbers in there too, but she didn't call them. Though Emma's reasoning sounded perfectly sound, Laura still had a doubt. "So this is what you wanted to give me a cell phone?" she asked, sound a bit unconvinced as she picked up the new piece of tech and started tapping the screen experimentally. "I do not need to be treated as a student." she murmured, finally responding to some of what the professor said. "I will be eighteen, and I am more then proficient in most things compared to the others here." She shoved the new phone into her pocket along with the old one. She could make up her mind on it later, and pushing one hand through her heavy mass of tangled hair she met Emma's gaze once more. "What is the catch?" she asked flatly, deciding right then and there that this obviously had some sort of price or restriction to go along with it.

There's a soft sigh from Emma as she stands up and shakes her head, "The catch? The… catch… amazing. How one so young can be so easily jaded. But given your life-experiences, I can fathom why you would feel such. Ah well…" It's a momentary pause from her as Emma then looks down once more, as if in consideration and she pushes off the couch to walk forwards once more towards the girl and gives a flat look, "I would prefer to call it impertinence. Be that as it may…" Her hand goes into her pocket, and comes out with another item. An expense card, "This has twelve hundred dollars on it. That should be enough to establish yourself a wardrobe beyond your current faux-chic look. But… it will only work at clothing retailers. Any place else and I will receive a call from them to deny the charge." With that said, she turns and begins to walk away, "You're wrong, my dear child… there is so much more than fighting and killing to life. So much more to be lived. Being among this school or

"Being among this school or others could teach you much that you know inside yourself you need. Not just to camouflage yourself… or to fit in… but to find more of who you are beyond what they deemed fit to give you."

She wasn't exactly sure what emotion she felt more strongly; mildly annoyed at the fact that Emma seemed to be trying to make her into a barbie doll or something, or overly confused at the amount of generosity the woman was showing. She stared down at the card, in her extended hand, her brow furrowing. "I… do not like shopping…" was really the only thing she could come up with. Not that shed ever really -gone- shopping, but it was an automatic response. f she didn't know about something then she didn't like it. Laura huffed out a sigh, her head lifting to look back up at Emma, really just dumb founded at the moment, and that fact had her lapsing into silence and staring.

Emma stops and turns at a distance to face the girl once more, "That's because you've never been properly shopping, my dear. For one thing, when was the last time you purchased a comfortable bra? Or perhaps in fact a pair of shoes or heels properly sized to you?" Crossing her arms under her bosom, the older woman adds, "You have made it plain you have no wish for me to contribute to your further education in life. I cannot make you stay, Laura. Nor can I make you do anything… well… I could…" Smiling at that, "But that road has been well-traveled, and has always ended in failure on my part. You see Laura…" And for a moment she allows the casual armor to slip away, "I believe… honestly… no one has done you the simple kindness of treating you as you should have been treated. You have little family, no real home, and a life wrought with peril. Is it any wonder why you find it so hard to relate to the other children here?"

Laura's cheeks darkened, and her arms moved swiftly to cross over her chest, pressing her petite chest down flatter so as to not draw attention there. "My… bra is fine…" she muttered, her cheeks turning an even darker shade of crimson. In all honesty she'd had the same one or two sports bras for the last year and a half or so. One booted toe scuffed against the other and she made a face at the mention of heels. "My shoes are practical… heels…. throw you off balance.. I have seen girls who wear them fall all the time.." Alright so she was really reaching here. Laura being knocked off balance was a rare thing, but ti was the best she could come up with. She shoved the card into her back pocket with the new cell phone, her gaze dropped to the floor again, letting her hair fall in front of her face before Emma could find more things to point out that needed changing. "T-thank you…" she stammered nearly inaudible, more wanting to shutdown any further conversation on this topic then anything else right now.

With the eyes down and the hair in the way, it's only the other senses that feel her coming from the hearing of the movement on the carpet, and the shift in the air as a hand comes down to touch your shoulder. Emma sighs once, and then reaches over to stroke that long raven hair, "Change…" As if reading thoughts, but not having to do more than read body language, " …is not about taking away from what is there. Change is more often about growth… about becoming more than what you see in the mirror every morning. Change is about discovery, and about failure… again and again… to find success. And change… is the very thing that people fear more than anything else. The new and the different." Once more she strokes through at hair, mumbling to herself, "And some conditioner…"

She flinched as the hand come down on her shoulder, though the moment was hardly more then a twitch. Laura gave a vague nod at Emma's words and only let the woman touch her again for a brief moment before she took the tiniest of steps back. She couldn't think of anything else to say, and so Laura nodded again once, teeth dragging over her lower lip uncertainly.

Emma moves away to give the girl some space, saying gently, "I do care what happens to you, Laura. Despite how bitter the world might have made you, the essential fact is many here do… however… at the same, many also feel that you deserve your space, and do not reach out. I cannot take the place of your mother, and I am not Logan… nor would I wish to be. What I am however… someone who is keenly aware of how alone one can feel in a world where even in the differences you are different. Should this place not work for you, I am aware of others. But… always know there will be a place for you no matter what happens. A place here." Slow steps are heard as she begin to walk off, her normally easy and graceful step at a half-pace of her normal business stride, as if waiting for something.

As Emma took a step back so did Laura. She kept moving until the backs of her thighs found the window seat, and she teetered for a moment before catching herself. Her willowy form gave a shudder, the movement infinitesimal, but still there, and she turns in place, sliding back into her seated position she'd been in before Emma answered. Her eyes stung, and she blinked furiously at that as knees pulled tightly up to her chest and her arms circle around them. A staggered breath escaped, and then another. By the third her breathing was quiet and normal again, calming herself as quickly as she'd gotten overwhelmed. "I appreciate the …. gifts." she replied, her tone still flat, but their were deeper undercurrents to her words. She lapsed back into silence, her head pressed against cold glass and she resumed her vacant staring out the window.

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