2010-01-10: Old School


Cyclops_icon.jpg Dallas_icon.jpg

Summary: Headmaster and Student have an impromptu meeting.

Date: January 10, 2010

Old School

Rating: Log Rating.

Xavier Mansion - Library

Like most Libraries, this one has that respected quite hush about it. A desk to check out books sits next to the door, next to the desk sits a statue of an Orangutan with a sign saying Return your books or else. Row upon row of books goes up and down the room. In the middle of all the shelves are two computers for looking up titles and a group of tables for students to sit and study. Along the back wall are windows with padded window seating for students to read in quiet.

It is well after midnight and technically after lights out as well, but Dallas has been at the school long enough to know that if you show some discretion, you can usually give the teachers an excuse to pretend not to notice you're up and about. He's at one of one of the tables with a laptop open in front of him and connected to the Xavier network. One of the declassified battle summaries and reports from a truly ancient X-Men battle with, amongst others, Toad is on the screen and Dallas is reading how the old school guys handled agile hand-to-hand types. The bruises and blisters from their fight with Batroc remind him occasionally of why he's up in the middle of the night. Especially when he reaches for a drink of water from a bottle on the table. Other than the newish student and the pool of light around him, the library is dark and quiet.

Having come from the Danger Room, the Headmaster of Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters is dressed in his X-Men uniform, nothing like a midnight blue unitard to hide yourself in a dimly lit library. Scott approaches the one soul in the library quietly, he'd been noticing one more student looking at the declassified mission logs, apart from the X-Force, who's members look over them to train up for strategical purposes. That one was Dallas Gibson, Codename: Specter. Cyclops himself figured he should see what the reason for the sudden spike in interest was. He'll approach unannounced, but will not try to surprise the student, he learned a logn time ago doing that to a mutant wasn't a good idea if one was not in a battle situation. His visor is gunmetal gray, the red visor bar illuminated by the concussive force held back behind it's protective barrier.

Dallas reads through, scrolling back a few times. He's occasionally scrawling notations based on what he's reading on a pad in the only language he knows for physical maneuvers, as football plays, though he's had to add a notation to signify height since X-Men battles tend to be a bit more 3-D than football ones. He shakes his head once and taps his pencil on the edge of the laptop with a low, tic…tic…tic… noise, looking around absently. Shelves, books, windows, computers, guy with red visor, more bo…. Dallas blinks and focuses on Cyclops, standing up as he recognizes the Headmaster and X-Man. He's not /quite/ standing at attention, but there is a sense of a young man who has dealt with authority figures who expect shows of respect and that he considers Cyclops as such. His voice is a little nervous as he says, "Mr. Summers. Um, good evening?"

Scott looks down to Dallas, giving a smirk. "Good morning, you mean, Dallas." He says in his usual stoic voice. "So, you seem to be hitting the old files more than most of your peers lately. I wanted to see what you were doing with them." Scott has seen many people read them to get some studying done, or perhaps some entertainment if they happen to really enjoy that kind of thing. He looks to his old X-Men picture, showing one of the old uniforms, remembering that he still has that in the armory. The X-Man does respect the amount of respect the youngster is showing to himself, but he's not one to keep kids like that for long. "You can sit down." He says, his voice still dead-pan, and showing little emotion. As is his custom.

Dallas fights back a wince. Busted is the word that comes to mind. He sits and then says, "Thanks. And they're pretty interesting reading. And I'm here to learn to be an X-Man, rather than just learn to control my shadow. So I try to read a couple every day. Figuring out tactics for my squad, when we start competing." He pauses and says, "I was with the group that ran into Batroc yesterday and we didn't do that well. I mean, we won, but it was a sloppy win. Against anybody else…." He shakes his head. "It would have been bad. And it bugs me that I didn't handle it as well as I should have. So I'm trying to see what you guys do when faced with the same problems." He's talking a little fast. Not quite babbling, but obviously watching Scott's reactions and trying to justify himself.

Scott gives a nod, looking to the laptop. "It bugs you that you didn't do better, considering you haven't been training for more than a month? High expectations." Scott mentions before taking a seat next to the computer. "Well, you're taking an interest in what we do, your potential future. I can't say that's not a bad thing, but you're still out past curfew." He says looking to Dallas, the red visor still illuminated. The Headmaster sits still, waiting for Dallas' reaction.

Dallas nods, looking back down at the paper and then back up. "If I don't push myself, who will? And when you jump in with the bad guys like that, you pretty much put everybody in danger. So screwing up isn't an option, even for a newbie. Like my football couch says…said, 'If you jump in with sharks, you better have teeth'." He pauses a moment and then, despite being somewhat intimidated and certainly awed at meeting Cyclops, he can't help but add, "And I figured it would be worth more detention, if I got caught. Somebody told me recently that you just have to go for what you want and take your hits for it." A pause and that hint of a cocky grin fades. "Um, Sir."

"Who told you that?" Scott asks, not angered, more curious. It's an intriguing notion, if Dallas really wanted to get in trouble he could, but he's staying up studying. "No, punishing you for studying would be counter productive." He'll never say he was testing Dallas to see what he would say or react. The Headmaster certainly is intimidating, mainly for the lack of emotion he sends out, the visor does nothing to help that, of course, no eye contact, no body language reading.

Dallas pauses a moment, considering the question, but in the end, given the culture he's embraced since early childhood, there really is only one answer. He sits up a little straighter, looks Cyclops in the …where the eyes should be and answers, careful respect in his tone, "A friend, sir." And then a little sidestep, "And thanks for that, because with all the catching up I have to do, I'd be scrubbing things until I graduate." He grins faintly at that thought, apparently a bit irrepressible. He's watching the headmaster as well, seeing how Scott takes running up against that 'don't rat out a friend' answer and getting some idea of how the X-Man carries himself.

"A friend huh? Well, your friend seems to have some good ideas. Just don't get crazy, 'taking the hits' only goes so far before it gets to be a pain, and is harmful to you." The Headmaster canters his head a little before standing up and nodding. He's not in X-Man mode right now, he's in Headmaster/mentor mode. "How long do you have until you're done with your punishment?" He asks, not knowing right off his head.

Dallas stands when Cyclops does. It's just force of habit. A Headmaster is the same as a coach but more so, right? He says, "Ah, I'm due to finish it up in a couple of days." And then after a second he adds, lest Cyclops think he's a whiner, "It wasn't that bad at all. And Mr. Addison went pretty easy on me."

The Headmaster nods, some kids thenk when he asks that that he'll reduce it, but the veteran students know that he won't. "So, we'll have to do a different one next time then." He says, his crude, awful attempt at humor, since there's not inflection in his tone, losing the humor.

Dallas's eyebrows go up and he swallows once, standing a little straighter. "Ah, I'll keep that in mind, sir." Whatever he's picturing, it's probably worse than the actual punishments would be. How many laps to do you end up doing in school for superheroes? Probably hundreds, if not thousands. Seeing that the impromptu interview is about to end, Dallas throws caution to the wind and asks, "Mr. Summers? If you don't mind? Seeing how you were, you know, old school and all, first class and all that… any tips? Anything you'd do differently the second time around?" Because the first thing you do when you play a new field is talk to other people who have already found out how the turf lays.

Cyclops looks to Dallas as he thinks. "Well, take the time to enjoy what's happening here. You don't have to be on call to fight all the time." Cyclops looks up, that's about all he has. He'd say more, but he's not his advisor, doesn't want to step on Sam's toes. "That's really it, sorry it wasn't much help, but when I was your age, we were always up against the Brotherhood, so my experience was different. Don't forget to sleep soon, Dallas." He offers, before slowly starting to walk out, if Dallas has anything else to ask, now would be the time to ask.

Dallas nods and considers that one, though 'enjoy' seems so … frivolous. Then again, Scott is an X-Man. In some ways, /the/ X-Man. And thus even if Dallas doesn't understand the advice, it's worth figuring out. That train of thought is pretty obvious in his open and unguarded expression of curiosity, then confusion and finally thoughtful pondering. He just says, "I'll head that way now. And, um, thanks." He remains standing, watching Cyclops exit and will wait until he's pretty sure that Scott won't see it to literally bounce a little on his feet in excitement. And then pretend he didn't just do that.

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