2012-01-30 - Going From Bad To Worse


Connor_icon.jpg Nicholas_icon.jpg Taylor_icon.jpg

Summary: Taylor chases down Nick after his and Quenton's argument and they run into Connor…

Date: January 30, 2012

Log Title: Going From Bad To Worse

Rating: R

Xavier Mansion - Woods

Pine, Oak, Birch, and many other trees can be found in these woods. Paths lead all through out them for students to take walks. The occasional bench can be found along the paths. Students shouldn't worry about wandering too deep in these woods as its almost impossible for them to get lost here.

(( Continued from Horrid Misunderstandings ))

Orion has run off in one direction and Nick is trying to figure out what that direction is and not only is he in the wrong direction but he's gotten lost in the process. He's standing not near any path and is looking around, occasionally moving an arm to wipe his face with his jacket sleeve. "Please be okay." He mutters to himself looking frantic. "Orion!" He calls out hoping the horse will come.

Taylor has followed after Nicholas, leaving Quenton behind to calm down, running on all fours in order to make the finding process a little bit easier. Upon spotting Nicholas, the felinoid student heads in his direction, stopping when nearby to stand up like a proper person and wipe off their hands. "I'm glad I caught up to you," mumbles the teen, "Are you okay?"

Nicholas stiffens upon hearing Taylor's voice and quickly wipes at his eyes and takes a deep, shuddering, breath. "Why." He asks her maybe a bit to harshly. "I have to find Orion, I don't want him getting hurt." He says intentionally ignoring the the question asked.

"I can find Orion… I know his scent. You always have it on you," says Taylor, looking aside at the harsh question, ears flicking back for a moment. "It's the least I can do…"

Nicholas sniffs and finally looks at Taylor and it's obvious that there are some tear streaks on his face. He nods but doesn't speak initally, still a bit tense and on guard. "Thanks, he's the only thing that matters anymore." He says quietly and with a flat tone to his voice.

About a mile off from the two student's searching, the sound of an engine can be heard as a lone vehicle rounds one of the many bends on the winding road approaching the mansion. Connor is his usual attentive self behind the wheel… but this is one of those rare moments where no one is watching, and he couldn't normally get in trouble, so he's hammered down, and there's a slight screech of the tires as he takes the turn hard. No one can see the slight smirk that comes of it. It seems that Dr. McCoy's bad driving habits rubbed off with his physics instructions!

Taylor adjusts their bloodstained white blouse for a moment, after that crouched running, and readjusts the black skirt being worn, and sniffs the air, "I think you might've got turned around a bit… I'm sorry about…" Taylor just waves a hand at that, probably indicating 'everything', while starting walking in the direction that Orion is thought to be. The feline student's ears perk up at the sound of the engine approaching, and flick lightly at the screeching.

The sound of the screeching tires causes Nicholas's knees to weaken, if only for a moment, but there's no sound of a car hitting anything so he hopes that means Orion wasn't just hit by a car. Taylor's apology goes ignored for the moment as he turns in the direction of the sound. "Orion.." He whispers in a panic and just starts running in that direction completely forgetting the fact that Taylor can sniff to see if that's the direction his horse ran off in.

Connor slows on the next bend however, the engine revving hard as he downshifts between gears, the M5 giving a growl of protest after having the throttle opened up like that for a bit. Cars like to go fast. But there's a horse on the side of the road. It's just walking along as if nothing was wrong, but there's a saddle on it, and once the lights shine on it, the young man can make out the academy logo that gets stencilled on everything. So, that practical instinct goes to his phone, and he makes a quick call to the mansion. The brief conversation causes him to stop and pull over… getting out of the car to go catch the trusty steed.

Taylor blinks a few times as Nicholas runs off, and the feline just opts to follow him so long as he's heading off in the right direction, unsure of whether Nicholas managed to see something that the feline mutant missed.

There's a bit of stumbling, branches snagging clothes and such but Nichoals doesn't seem to care as he runs through the woods. Unfortunately though he gets about halfway towards the road when he stops and looks around, obviously lost. "Which way did the sound come from…" He mutters before noticing Taylor followed him which seems to snap him out of his single determined mind frame. "Taylor….can you…smell him?" It feels weird to ask that.

Never having dealt with Orion specifically before, and not really with horses in general, it might seem a bit comical to the equestrian if they heard Connor saying things like 'Hey Horse.' And 'Ummm… Heel? No… that's not it. Whoa? Yes… Whoa Horse.' Followed up with. 'Why aren't you whoaing!' Is Whoaing even a word? Probably not. As for smells, well a horse is a horse, of course of course, which means that shortly after that, the well-dressed young man ends up evading horse apples left in Orion's wake as the stallion just continues to walk. It can't help that this human is being stupid, can it?

"Yeah… He's upwind from here, we've got to head over this way," says Tay, directing Nicholas in a slightly different direction towards where Orion actually is, "Just follow me, I'll get you the rest of the way. I hear someone talking to him… probably trying to catch him." The feline student runs in that direction, keeping whatever pace Nick keeps up with.

"I hope he wasn't hit by that car." Nicholas mutters as he follows Taylor out of the woods and to the road. Seeing Connor try to get his horse under control he lets out a breath of relief and hurries right over to the horse. "Orion…you're okay." He says as the horse walks over to him. Nick gives the chestnut quarter horse a big hug around it's neck and just starts to cry, petting him slowly. There's a definate bond of affection between rider and horse.

Connor's hand is on something at the small of his back the moment someone bursts from the woods like that, but with the lights from the car shining on the horse, it's easy to see it's not someone threatening or otherwise, which causes it to pull back away. Then he sees who it is, and there's a slight crease to his mouth. Taking a breath, he finally says, "So he's your's… well… I called the mansion to let them know, and they were going to send someone out. But you've got this under control it looks like." Turning his back so the pair can have their moment, he walks back to the car, calling in to call off the search, he's found the strays.

Taylor slows down once Nicholas has Orion in sight, standing nearby to the fellow student but not so close as to deny Nicholas the moments of relief for reuniting with the horse. The feline students looks towards Connor, back towards Nick, and then down to the ground.

There's a few moments of Nicholas just crying and saying things softly to his horse, things like 'I can't lose you too' and then stuff in regards to be happy he found him and apologizing for him getting scared. He eventually turns around and walks up to Taylor and gives her a hug. "Thank you for helping me." He then looks at Connor and gives him a big of a nod. "Thanks, for stopping and finding him. Orion's mine." And if on cue the horse walks over to Nick and starts to chew on his jacket affectionately.

Connor just nods and goes to the car, opening the trunk, and shuffling around inside for a moment. When he comes back, he has a couple bottles of water, a small packet of jerky, and some trail mix. One bottle and the jerky is given to Taylor, and the other stuff is handed to Nick, "You're welcome… but you should sit down and rest for a few moments. The telepath on duty just swept the area, and they know I'll get you back safe. Seems like Miss Frost was afraid you'd run away, Nicholas." Looking at the pair, he then adds, "If you want to ride back on your own, I can take your friend to the mansion. It's no problem. I'm on my way to drop off some things, and get ready for tomorrow's classes."

Taylor seems surprised by the hug from Nicholas, seeming rather unsure what to do before just returning it briefly and nodding to him, mumbling, "It's the least I could do…" The feline student takes the jerky from Connor and sniffs it, "Thanks, guy." The student brushes off that blouse with the relatively recently dried blood on it, and seems content to chew on it.

Nicholas looks over at Connor and shakes his head. "No, I wasn't running away. I was just going for a ride through the woods when something scared him bad." It's obvious he's being vague about 'something'. Nick then looks over at Taylor, his hand absent-mindedly petting Orion's neck, and speaks. "Why do you keep saying that, it's the least you could do?"

Connor shrugs as if that's not his concern, and looking to Taylor for a moment, he slips the heavy jacket off himself, and puts it over Taylor's shoulders. This might not reassure Nick in any fashion as he can now see the rig the man has on his back. A cylinder and what looks like a pair of knives set up for concealed draw, "Well… they know you're allright and on your way back now. But take your time. Everyone needs a bit of time away from the school. It's all well and good to be around people your own age, but still… if you don't get your space to work out things your own way, it'll drive you a little crazy."

Tay seems rather surprised at the jacket that is suddenly put over their back, and offers Connor a mumbled thank you, pulling the edges of it around their fairly slim body. The feline student glances towards Nicholas and then shrugs lightly, looking down and answering, "I fucked up. It's my fault. I'm sorry."

Nicholas looks over at Taylor and opens his mouth to snap at her before shaking his head. "No, it's over with. Don't worry about it, you didn't say it because you wanted him to give me a hard time. It's not your fault he's a real asshole and you weren't the one who said….what he said." He says before looking at Connor and giving the slightest of nods. "It's just…." He pauses before the next thing comes out without him really thinking about it. "I don't belong here."

"None of us belong here." Connor replies from afar, tapping away at something on his phone, "I wanted to stay in my room and write, and deal with people only when I absolutely had to. Then my powers manifested late, and suddenly I was appearing in places like the school locker room, the park. But it's not just about the powers. It's about the understanding." Walking back to the car, he kills the engine, and pulls the keys from it, moving to sit on the hood for a moment in a manner that won't scuff or dent it, "A gene zigged left, when it should have zagged right, and instead of being a redhead, you became a telekinetic. And because of one stupid gene, people will hate you, and people get jealous of you. And it's not fair. It wasn't for me. And it's not for her." Nodding to Taylor, "Everyone's got their wounds here."

Taylor nods slowly at what Nicholas has to say in response to the apology, then just listening idly to the rest of it, frowning slightly, as much as the feline face can frown. At Connor's explanation, Tay can't do much but peer back towards the ground and pull the jacket a little bit tighter.

Nicholas shakes his head and leans against Orion. "No, it's not about my powers. I've had 'em for four years and they never really posed a problem..I mean they did but not like that. I just..this place isn't for me." He looks at Taylor and then looks at Connor. "It's a school full of social rejects that all banded together and if you're not, or weren't, a social reject there's no room for you here."

Connor arches a brow at that, "Wow… so… not only are you being judgemental, but also elitist. All you need now is arrogance, and I know a guy in Mutant Town who'd love to sign you up for mutant terrorism 101." With that he pushes off the hood and walks around to the driver's side door, "It's High School. Of course you're going to have problems finding where to fit in. Especially with a small school like this. But…" And you can both only hear his voice as he sits down, "Your choice. You want a ride back to the mansion? If not keep the jacket… I'll be on campus all day, and you can return it any time."

Taylor's ears fold back slightly for a moment and the student protests, "It's… not my fault that I was on the fringe. I've been /trying/ to get along with people, like a normal person…" The feline student glances towards Connor with a sort of perplexed look and then says to Nick, "I mean, I get it. You probably feel now like I've always felt… and that sucks. I dunno what else to say about it. It's pretty shitty, I get it. I don't think people're trying to make you feel that way, though. I mean, I'm not. You seem okay."

Nicholas's head jerks back a bit at Connor's words and the glare is definately one of pure dislike. "Just go back to the school Mr. High and Mighty. Thanks for saving Orion." He says with frosty tone to his voice before turning to Taylor. "I've never had a problemg etting along with people until I came here and trying to deal with everything on top of a new school, new friends, new….everything, it's not easy. And I don't care what that assclown says, it's not a small school, it's bigger than my old school, a lot bigger." He says quietly to her. "I hate it here."

The engine starts, and it rumbles out a sound almost feline in nature before the BMW pulls off the gravel and onto the road. But then Connor stops next to the two, and rolls down the window, looking at them from the light of the interior, "Let me afford you some knowledge off my supposedly high horse before I go." His eyes go dead on to Nick, "You're afraid. You're so scared you're locked inside of it. And until you admit you're afraid, and face up to that fear… you're always going to be this person. You're always going to be pushing away because fear's more comfortable than caring for someone else you might lose." Then he turns his gaze to Taylor, and says, "You're a better friend than he deserves, but you're what he needs. The school has a tracer lock on your phone, I've let them know you're coming back. When is up to you, but don't wait too long, or they'll send someone to come looking."

The feline student tugs at the jacket lightly and looks towards Nick at the quiet words, "I get it. Everything's changing. It's sucky… but it's always crappy when everything's changing. You probably want someone familiar. I know I do. Wish I could help. Though Orion's probably better at that." Taylor pulls out the cellphone to examine it for a moment and then mumbles towards Connor, "Sure, yeah, okay…"

Nicholas's eyes glow blue and he turns, motioning with his arm, palm flat in front, and thrusts it at Connor's car sending a telekinetic push of enery at the passenger side door which cause quite the dent and the window to shatter. "Just stop it! Stop acting like you know me and you know what I'm feeling! You don't! I'm not scared of caring for someone I might lose okay! God Dammit!" He says feeling a bit bad about taking the lords name in vain. "I can't deal with this! I can't! I miss them so much that every day is a challenge and I don't have anyone to talk to! I don't have anyone familar they all ditched me okay?! I just want someone I know…" He says as Taylor has what's wrong right on the nose and the tears start to run again hating that he's cried so much tonight and let so many people get to him. "I'm glad I have Orion but…" There's only so much comfort a horse can bring.

Connor kills the engine, and gets out, pulling a briefcase and a backpack with him. Oddly, there's no anger in his eyes or expressio now that he comes around to looks at the car, the push having sent him across the street. Nodding once, he looks back at the two younger students, and jerks a thumb, "You want to smash the rest of it? It's just a car. If I tell my employer what happened, about the worst he'll do is dock my pay and chide me for getting into it with a telekinetic. But he's odd like that." Taking a couple steps away, he adds, "I'm serious. Let loose."

As Nicholas starts crying, it's probably clear for a moment that Taylor has no idea what to do, but the feline takes a different approach to Connor, giving Nicholas a hug unless he protests. Either way, the student says, "I'm sorry that happened to you, Nick. But just 'cause you don't have anyone familiar doesn't mean you've gotta be alone or just tough it out…"

There is no protest to the hug, instead it's returned as Nick just cries on her adding dirt and tears to her blood spattered blouse. He looks over at Connor and doesn't respond to his offer instead he says quitely through suddered breaths, "I'm sorry, I didn't know…..if it comes out of your paycheck I'll do what I can to help pay for repairs." He says since it was his fault but he doesn't make any move to destroy or let loose on the car.

Connor looks back at the car, and tilts his head, "No… it doesn't work like that. My employer sees things differently. It's my responsibility to have pushed you to this point. So it's my responsibility to be honest about the damage." That being said, he turns and looks at the two, clinging as they are, and something softens there, his voice coming out a bit quieter, "I don't mean to come off like I do… not with you. When I was told what happened, my first instinct was to go out there and make the people who did it hurt. They had no right." He pauses, "I look at you, and I feel impotent. Useless. Because the things I'm good at aren't the things you need right now. When we get you back to the campus, I'll leave you be. You won't see me, I promise." Then his smile returns slightly as he says to Taye, "I'll make sure you both have as much time as you need, but I really do suggest you get him back on campus. Take him down to the boathouse on the cove dock. It's quiet, private, and someone always hide snacks in the supply chest. Pop Tarts."

Taylor just continues hugging Nicholas for as long as he needs or whenever he seems ready to pull away, the ocelot student's eyes shifting towards Connor for a moment to acknowledge what he says, but Tay opts not to respond verbally.

Nicholas pulls away from Taylor and sinks down to the ground, not having much energy to stand anymore before looking up at Connor with narrowed eyes. "You did that on purpose?" He says thinking that when Connor said it was his responsiblity to push him to that point, it was done on purpose.

Connor closes his eyes a moment, and pinches the bridge of his nose, "Not like that. I don't manipulate people like Miss Frost does, or some of the other former teachers have." There's a sigh from the man as he shakes his head, "I meant… I didn't know what I was talking about, and I pushed until you got angry, and pushed back. Damage done. I can't take it back. So… no sense in making you pay for something because I opened my mouth. Allright?"

Taylor looks down towards Nick, the jacket the Connor put over the student's shoulders pulled a bit tighter shut again now that the hug is broken, and the feline student just listens to what the other two have to say.

Nicholas just gives a nod to Connor but doesn't say anything, he walks over to Orion and pulls a small sugar cube out of his pocket to feed to him. "Is the school right down the street?" He asks pointing in the opposite direction of the school before he gets on the horse. "I just want to head back."

Connor shakes his head and gets into the car, starting up, and begins to drive the other direction… actually towards the school. Taylor's phone then buzzes, and when checked shows a local map ala Google Maps and the direction needed to travel to get back. Then an IM pops up and says -Don't let him worry about the car. I'm serious. Just get him back and just keep doing what you're doing.- Unlike most people, his spelling is spot on. No internet shortcutting or LOLspeak. And with that, the BMW drives off…

Taylor picks up the cellphone to examine it for a moment, shrugs at it as if it could notice and then puts it away again, glancing towards Nicholas, gesturing the opposite way that he's pointing. "School's over this way…"

Nicholas nods to Taylor, looking at her while holding the reigns. "Let's walk back, I was gonna ride but I don't wanna leave you by yourself." He says motioning with his head for her to follow him as he starts walking at a slow pace. "Can this night get any worse?"

The feline student glances towards Orion and then towards Nicholas, following along. Taylor shrugs lightly at the question and answers, "Probably could. I'm hoping it won't."

Nicholas holds onto the reigns of Orion as he walks down the road at a slow pace, seemingly not as eager to get back to the school as he stated earlier. He's quiet for a good part of the walk and it's not until five minutes goes by that he opens his mouth. "So…..rabbit." It's about all he can think to say.

Taylor looks rather self conscious as Nicholas says that, pulling the jacket further closed and turning subtly away from him, "I never meant to, I mean, I like rabbits, I liked seeing rabbits in petting zoos when I was a kid and I would never…" And then Taylor shrugs lightly and says more quietly, "But I did."

Nicholas looks back at Taylor and shrugs a shoulder. "I'm just more freaked out you ate it raw." He admits to her. "People hunt rabbits, I'm actually kind of impressed you caught it on foot just the blood and the raw…." He says not trying to make fun of her or put her down or anything. "So the cat thing, it's just an appearance thing then?"

"I didn't meant to do that… to eat it like that," says Taylor, shrugging lightly. The feline student glances towards Nick and says, "It's just an appearance thing, but… but sometimes I feel like my mind is just on autopilot, and I lose myself. Like when I tasted that blood…" Taylor licks their teeth lightly. "But… I'm not an animal, Nick. I'm never gonna be an animal… I can't be…"

"I didn't say you were, nor do I think you are." Nicholas says defensively. "Maybe you can find ways to focus on something when you start to…uh…lose yourself. I dunno carry something that you can hold onto when your mind starts wandering, I'm not sure how it works. There might be something to help keep you…uh…grounded? Is that the word?"

"I guess it's a fine enough word," says Taylor, nodding slowly at that, "I'm not sure how it works either. I mean, just seeing the rabbit running away from me, it was like something went off. I'm not sure what I can hold onto, or what that would mean. It's just base stuff that triggers it, I think… hunger, thirst, tiredness, that ilk, and then having something that'll make it go away."

Nicholas nods and gets quiet again kicking a few small rocks as he scuffs his feet along. "I really don't know a whole lot about it, I just do the telekinesis, move things with my mind, Jedi thing." He says as he moves the reigns from one hand to the other so he can put a hand on Orion's neck. "I didn't mean anything back there, when I said the social reject thing. I didn't mean it to sound like I'm an elitist jerk or anything."

Taylor shrugs at Nicholas and says, "It's fine… It's pretty spot on. I'm a social reject. Outsider. Always have been. Never meant to be, but there you go… Almost overwhelmed here. I've only had three people in my life." The feline student shrugs again lightly and says, "I guess you feel like an outsider with outsiders, though."

"There's nothing wrong with being one just, being in a small town where everyone knew everyone it wasn't easy to be a social reject." Nicholas says. "I mean I would have graduated with ten other kids and we all knew each other really well. It's just really different here and everyone loves to play the role of Know-It-All and know exactly what you're feeling and going through." He says rolling his eyes. "But you seem to get along with other people here well enough."

"I've been getting along well, yeah, I'm actually surprised. I'm used to being either pushed around and beat up, or just totally out of sight. Got in trouble when I fought back," says Taylor, glancing towards Nicholas. "I'm making an effort here to get along when life's trained me to just hide. I keep fucking up, I'm not good at social stuff, but I like it when people like me. I've only ever had three people who did before. I'm okay with being alone. I just don't like it."

"Yeah well you've got Shane's boyfriend ready to smack someone with a tree if they mess with you now." Nick says and he can't hide the bitterness in his voice, even if it's unintentional. "I have a hard time getting alone with people here, if I'm not angry I'm upset. When I'm having my okay days it's like I end up running into jerk wagons like…him."

"Q's okay, I just think he has problems with his powers…" mumbles Taylor, looking down, "I'm sorry about that…" The feline student takes a few more silent steps and then remarks, "I guess it's like you said. It's other outsiders that I'm getting along with… social rejects or whatever. But yeah, if you're angry or upset, makes it harder. Especially 'cause most social rejects are neurotic and might think you're just angry they exist."

Nicholas nods. "I know, Shane told me about 'em." But he doesn't go too much into it. "Yeah well I'm not angry anyone exists…here." He corrects himself quickly. "I've never been the outsider or the new kid and with my parents and Bodie…" He says taking a deep breath before he continues. "Then just not having anyone I can really talk to…it's hard. I mean Jill and Ahmed are cool enough. Same with you and Shane."

Taylor nods at Nicholas and says, "I know what you mean… it's kind've why I /am/ making efforts to make friends, I guess. Like I said, I had three people… but my parents are still freaked out about the mutant thing, and my sort of boyfriend is now my ex sort of boyfriend. 'Not into bestiality,' he said." The felinoid student scowls, and then shrugs, "I just need people to talk to, too. I always had them…"

"Everyone thinks it's the 'mutant thing' that bothers me, it doesn't. My parents didn't care, Bodie didn't care, Kirsten started dating me after she knew, David always thought it was awesome and noone in the county seemed to care." Nick says sounding almost exasperated. "I've had 'em since I was twelve. It wasn't until after…..everything and the Purifiers came that my girlfriend, best friend, teacher, neighbor and stuff started saying all these horrible lies about me and the deaths were blamed on me." He says as the anger is creeping back into his voice. "And that sucks about your parents, I mean you're still alive, they're still alive, having fur shouldn't matter. And bestilaity?" He says giving an eyeroll. "You're not an animal."

"Well, that's what I keep saying. To like. Everyone," says Taylor, shrugging lightly, "Not an animal." The feline student considers the rest of what Nicholas has to say and admits, "That does suck, though, what happened… and how people talked about you like that. I'm sorry that happened, Nick."

Nicholas gives Taylor a light shoulder bump and a small smile. "Well anyone calls you an animal I'll throw the nearest food product at them with my telekinesis. Apple, loaf of bread, wedge of cheese, can of beefaroni, right at their nose." It's the first time he's joked around in a long time. "Thanks, it really does suck but…thank you."

Taylor laughs softly at that and smiles at Nick, "Well, thank you, I'll be sure to keep food product around at all times just in case." The feline student then just nods slowly at the thanks that Nick gives.

"Well I guess if there isn't a food product around, I can always go with the nearest book, remote control, fellow student." Nicholas says with a shrug as the school starts to come into view. "Thanks Taylor, for letting me just…" He waves his hand to indicate his earlier actions.

Taylor laughs at the suggestion of throwing a fellow student and says, "Thanks." The feline student peers towards the school when it's close and says, "Looks like we're getting there."

"You know, if you didn't find me Orion would probably be who knows where and I'd be spending the night in the woods there. Even if you went back with Connor I'd probably be heading off in the wrong direction so thanks for finding him and being my guide. I get lost easy." Nicholas confesses with a shrug as the finally walk back onto school grounds through the gate. "I should get Orion cleaned up, fed and all set up in the stable. You…uh….wanna come with me or go back in?" He asks shrugging a shoulder.

Taylor glances towards the school, and then towards Nicholas and decides after a couple moments, "I'll come with you, if you'll let me help… I used to want a horse when I was a kid, so I'd kind of like to see…"

Nicholas stops for a second and turns to look at Taylor with a bit of a surprised look. "Uh…sure. Come on, when it's warmer I can even give you riding lessons on one of the school's horses. Orion's just finicky and has only ever let two people ride him." He says giving a bit of a smile. "Let's head over to the stables…just…which direction?"

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