2012-05-22: Beep Beep I M A Jeep

Players: Mike and Cale

Mike_icon.jpg Cale_icon.jpg

Summary: Cale runs into Mike at the Coldstone Creamery. They get to know each other a little better and Cale continues on his quest to (quietly) see if anybody knows anything about the whereabouts of his sister.

Date: May 22, 2012

Log Title: Beep Beep I'm a Jeep

Rating: G

Westchester - Salem Center

The parking lot that serves Salem Center is expansive. The mall building being the largest in the area, most of the traffic is aimed for there. However, there are a number of independent buildings along the edges of the parking lot and across the street. Benches dot the sidewalks that line the buildings, along with trash cans, bushes, trees and lamps. There is a large archway that leads to the mall entrance.

A happy little tune is playing in Mike's computer brain, something very silly from some European children's television program. The chorus is "beep beep I'm a jeep" and it's rather true at the moment. Mike is possessing a Jeep Cherokee, a vehicle owned by an otherwise rather snotty fellow who works at Barnes Academy; he's a mechanic, and he's allowing Mike to "be" his ride because the Jeep has been having some rather annoying engine problems. Mike found the cause right away but he hasn't explained it yet. He explained that he needed to drive it a bit to diagnose, so the owner gave him permission to do so, as long as he did some errands on the way.
This takes Mike back to Westchester, of all places. The jeep turns right into the parking lot, and the entirely illusionary young man driving it, looks for a place to park that won't result in the car being stolen, smashed, or scratched by les eediots. This is entirely do-able, but it requires a bit of circulating through the lot to find this prime spot.

Cale is hanging out in front of the Cold Stone Creamery today, sitting on a bench and licking at a vanilla ice cream cone. His hair is done into a braid again today, with bangs hanging free like an anime character. He wears a pair of skinny jeans with holes ripped in the knees, leather sandals, and a blue pokemon shirt with Haunter on the front - flipping people off, with the caption: 'Haunter used Scary Face!' He's fiddling with his modded x-phone, browsing the internet on it probably. Momentarily, he looks up to see the jeep drive up; not taking any special note of it other than that it's a Jeep. He might like to have one of those someday!

The way to the errand does not go directly past the Cold Stone, but Mike's also rather fast. He stops the jeep, materializes in place of the illusion (with an unfortunate 2 second blur) and then hops out, locking it behind him, and runs across the street into the strip 'industry' mall there - a car repair shop, a machine shop, a tire store, and an auto-parts store, all clumped together as if it were an utter coincidence that they were all in such useful proximity.

Mike comes out of the metal shop in about a minute, carrying a medium crate in both hands. The owners look perplexed as he nearly skips across the street, then puts the crate in the back of the Jeep. The back sags down a bit; the little engine is HEAVY. Then, chore finished, Mike decides to go pester the kid doing the anime' imitation. He adjusts his appearance slightly so that he looks like Brock from Pokemon if he was human, and approaches the ice creamery.

Cale watches the jeep for a moment, squinting at it as its driver goes all blurry - hrm. That's a familiar blur… but, it's still a bit too far away to really tell anything about it. The ice cream cone that he's eating gets another lick from a slightly too long tongue. But nothing hugely obvious. 'Brock' gets a little bit of a look as he approaches - as Cale sees something oddly familiar about the clothing and coloration there… but he can't quite put his finger on it. Of course, he doesn't really know it's Mike yet.

As he gets close enough to see the shirt, "Brock" startles in apparent fright, then gasps "Scary Face!" and faints - dramatically swooning onto a chair. Which immediately starts to bow under his weight, oops. Stupid plastic outdoor furniture.

Cale just kind of blinks, letting out a startled squeak-like noise, then breaking out into a grin as he realizes who it is. You know, what with holograms and all… "Mike?" he asks, "Or should I call you Brock today?" he laughs, taking another big lick of the ice cream with his creepily long tongue again.

Mike scrambles up from the collapsing chair, laughing, and his face stops looking quite so squinty-eyed and his hair looks less spikey. The silly looking jacket vest remains, with the words ROCK GYM on the pocket.

"Hee, you didn't drop your ice cream though. Good reflexes." He leans against the wall near the table, rather than sitting on another chair not rated for his weight.
(Note to self, he thinks: double-check mass numbers. Is 250 doable?)

"Well, I hope I wouldn't!" Cale rather likes ice cream; enough to be careful not to drop it. "Anyway, people tell me that all the time! I don't think it's really true though. Or maybe it's just from all the video games," the boy grins, brushing a bit of his bangs out of his eyes. "Anyhow," he sets his phone down on the bench beside him, "What've you been up to? You bought a Jeep?" he enquires.

"Bought? No, that belongs to one of the guys at my school. It has a problem with the electrical system." Mike smiles, the utter picture of innocence. Right? No. Really. (Abuse of image inducer, the innocent smile with subliminal halo alternating with a rakish leer and the hint of horns. Slightly more 'evil' than 'angel' shows through, all things considered.)

"I'm diagnosing it. And running an errand. But really, I was just going a bit stir-crazy and wanted to drive. How," Mike changes the subject like a cell-phone user changing lanes on the freeway without looking, "are the girls doing? I know they got back but I haven't had the chance to check in with them."

"I haven't… really talked to any of them," Cale murmurs, shrugging a little, "I sort've arrived at Xavier's while all that was going on, so I don't even really know any of them. 'cept, I know my friend Nick likes this girl named Jill who's… well, I don't know what's up with that," he shrugs a little, seeming non-plussed by Nick having a possible girlfriend. Though he kinda knew about it and… well, there's not that much he can do! Hence ice cream. "But, I think all things considered, everyone who came back is doing pretty well."

"Jill… wait, blue goo girl? Jill Pervinca? I know her." Mike is not oblivious to Cale's shrug and the rest of the body language with it - micro expressions, pupil diameters, etc. - and he's become rather more aware of the meanings since he has to fake them with his own induced image to stay out of the Uncanny Valley.

"So, avoiding the whole Nick thing since I've never met him, do you know how she's doing? I have to admit failure in trying to find out anything useful here. SHIELD won't let me snoop the mission database, at least not until they scrub it clean of anything at all interesting. I don't even know for sure who was taken from Xaviers."

"Well, there was Jill, and then Sophie, and Evelyn," Cale ticks off on his fingers, "That's it, I think. They're all okay, but," he trails off, "Jill is sort of… well… I don't know. I don't know her at all, so I haven't been down to the medbay… I hate that place anyway. But the rumor is something weird happened to her. Like she lost her mutant powers or something," he nods.

Lost her powers or something. Oh bloody… literally … Hell. Of course Mike doesn't say that out loud, but his tone begins to carry a slight hint of auto-tune for a word or two before he catches himself.
"Right. I also know Sophie DeCosta. I assume Hosea was on the retrieval team then. And Connor Blake, since he was off-grid during that time." Mike frowns to himself, but faithfully reproduces the expression ala image.

"Yeah, Hosea was, I don't know this Connor person really…" Cale shrugs a little, "I'm sorry, I'm still sorta new there so I don't know everyone. I sorta feel like it's none of my business, in a way, you know? Everyone is involved, but I've just sorta been trying to stay out of the way." Of course, everyone has catching up and reuniting to do… He bites his lip. The one person he really wants to see, though, is still gone. "I figure they don't really want some random guy they don't know getting in the middle of things."

"Maybe they do, maybe not. It will help if you just let them know you were concerned, and you're glad they're back. Don't push it beyond that, but it helps somewhat, when you've been dragged off to hell and you finally get back, to have someone tell you they missed you."
Which … really, Mike doesn't say, 'as you will learn in your own time' because that would just be too mean. And it MIGHT not happen to this one.

"I used to play RPGs and FPS games against Connor. I prefer the race games myself, but can't have it all. He hasn't been available a lot recently. But that's kind of why I needed the display card, so my friends can play again."

"Oh I see," Cale smiles, nodding. "Yeah, I suppose… It was nice to end up at Xavier's after everything that happened. I mean, I suppose nobody missed me, because I hadn't been there before… but they were welcoming. And it's not like… I have any other place to go at all. I guess I'll try and talk to them," he smiles. "I mean, just let them know."

"Good. And, if you don't mind me prying, why don't you have anywhere else to go?"
Nosy robot kid is nosy, but this may not be an entirely bad thing.
"Because If you need a place to get away, like on a holiday or anything, let me know, OK? Even if I'm not at that school any more, we tend to share the family we have, when we can. Or we'll BE that family."

Cale frowns, letting the hand holding the ice cream sit on his knee. Without thinking about it, he reaches his tongue down and laps at it, then kinda blinks, following the tongue back up to his mouth with the ice cream. Pretending that didn't happen! "I dunno. It's the common thing, I guess. Xavier's seems to double as an orphanage for mutants, you know? My parents got attacked, or there was an accident, and during it me and my sister manifested, so we survived, but they didn't. So now they're dead, and my sister's missing… They gave me a choice; go live with my uncle Baxter, who's a huge bigoted jerkface redneck, or live at Xavier's with other mutants."

"Damn. Sorry to hear that. Your sister is missing? Would you like me to see if I can find anything about her? I'm pretty good if I can get close to the right computers. And it's not a bad place much of the time." Mike says that without any audible irony.

"No, I mean, I really like it! It's waaaay better than my old school… I just… wish all that stuff hadn't happened, you know?" Cale sighs, "Anyway, yeah, she's missing. People are looking into it. I'm getting, well, really worried. I just try not to. But," he pauses. Mike seems trustworthy. "She looks like this," he fiddles with his phone, bringing up a picture of his sister. "Her name's Amy Black. But, I don't know if anybody is having much luck. I mean, it's been like a month, even. They say, most missing people, if they're not found after 48 hours chances of finding them are… well…" he trails off. "You know."

The 48 hour rule. "Yes. I know. But I can track things pretty well. Where was the accident? Where were you and she taken?"
Mike's already setting up the search parameters with the picture. Best to start at the right place though.
"So, I need to get back to my school. You need a ride? I can't go onto the grounds, but I CAN drive you to the gates. They won't shoot me."

"Oh, hey, that'd be pretty cool!" Cale nods, accepting the offer. Yeah, get into a car with strange people! Or robots! Whatever. "It was where we used to live, out in Colorado. We were transferred to a hospital here in New York, though, after a psyche evaluation and we were both supposed to go to Xavier's but there were some medical complications and… well, she just sort of vanished from the hospital after I ended up at Xavier's. It's total BS," he grumbles angrily, scowling. "I just know something's up, but people keep saying maybe she got transferred somewhere else or there was a medical emergency and… well, wouldn't I KNOW?" he sighs. "Sorry. It seems like I tell everyone I meet about this. But I can't help it."

"Sounds like a snow job to me. I'll contact Ms. Frost first and see how far the school has gotten, but there are things I can find out that they might not be able to do."

Mike leads Cale to the jeep. That blur thing happens again, and Mike is no longer quite tangible. Once they're moving, he grins, and says, "I wasn't allowed to have passengers for a long time, because I had such poor control of my connection to the car that I would leak over into them. This was a bit addictive because I really enjoy driving sometimes… Fortunately now, I don't do that."

"Snow job?" Cale asks, idly, as they pull up to the gates. He's not familiar with all of these intelligencia terms, as he thinks of them. "Anyway, yeah, our RA, Miss Hilde, said she was looking into it… I assume that means others, too. But. I've been trying to tell everyone, just to… you know, drag as big of a net as possible," he hops out of the side of the jeep, putting his hands on it, "That's pretty awesome, though. I'm gonna head back inside, though! Thanks for the ride! Keep me posted!" he nods, waving his cell phone as he opens the gates and jogs off towards the quad.

Mike grins and zooms out before he's tempted to say hi to anyone else.

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