2010-01-25: Regrouping


Kaden_icon.jpg Ethan_icon.jpg

Summary: Ethan and Kaden get to know another the day after the Spirits cleanse Ethan.

Date: January 25, 2010.

Log Title Regrouping

Rating: PG.

NYC - The Marc (Keith's Penthouse)

It's the next morning, after Kaden and Drew brought Ethan back to the penthouse. He's since taken a shower and is now in the living room pouring over a text book with a frustrated look on his face. Since Ethan is around, he's wearing just a pair of pajama pants since most of the time him and a few of the other spirits don't wear anything at all. There's an orange kitten next to him on the couch sleeping against Kaden's leg.

Ethan wanders out into the living room, looking more better for rest and recuperation. He still bears some evidence of that final battle, with various welts and bruises here and there, but in general he looks quietly cheerful and positive. He's wearing a set of borrowed sweat pants and nothing else, given that he arrived with one pair of generally unsuitable pants, even if they weren't dirty. Seeing Kaden on the couch, he smiles faintly and wanders over, not sitting yet. The kitten gets an arched eyebrow and a faint grin. He says, "Good morning."

Kaden looks up, actually grateful for the interruption. "Hey Ethan, how are you feeling?" He asks as his demeanor seems to be that of a completely different person than he first met as he actually seems kind of calm. He leans back on the couch with a sigh and picks up the cat to bring it on his lap. "Sorry about that yesterday, I didn't know it'd be so painful."

Ethan shrugs and says, "I deserved it. And it was necessary." There doesn't appear to be a lot of angst or self-recrimination in that statement. It's just how things are to him. He sits on an ottoman opposite Kaden and answers the question, "And I feel stupid but I'll live. At least the worst I did was wreck the train station. I spent most of my time trying to figure out how to take advantage of the demonic power structure and ah, well, capture you five."

"Drew's tough…a lot tougher than I am." Kaden says with a shrug, it's just Drew has more confidence in his powers where Kaden doesn't. "Well as long as you didn't kill anyone. And…I don't think you should feel stupid. So…how did it happen?" Meaning how did Ethan become so demonic.

Ethan says, "When a bunch of us jumped into a fight between two extra-dimensional types a few weeks ago. We backed the wrong one. After the fight she gave us a 'blessing' of sorts. A kiss on the forehead. I'm guessing it was actually kind of a marker and a way into our heads. So when all hell broke loose there was this voice in my head promising me power and knowledge and freedom." He pauses and does look ashamed for a moment as he says, "And I listened."

Kaden doesn't fully understand it but he gets enough. "We…so there were more of you? Did you all turn?" Kaden asks curiously as maybe he can do something that isn't selfish for once and try to find them and purify them as well. "Why do you look sorry you listened? We all do stuff we regret in life, just, like I said. At least you didn't kill anyone, it would have been worse for you."

Ethan nods and says, "Several. One of the Young Avengers, some others. We kind of dispersed after the fight." He tilts his head, given Kaden a considering look. "I'm a mage. I'm supposed to be all about the willpower. And killing really wasn't my focus. I just wanted to bring order out of the chaos and get everything under control and calmed down. And rule the world, of course."

Kaden looks at Ethan and rolls his eyes. "You're a fucking teenager like Drew and I, you're not some guy whose supposed to perfect. So what, you ended up as a demon for a bit and the worst you did was get into an all out brawl with Drew. Just be happy that's it. And I really have no freakin' idea what being a mage has to do with anything." He then sighs and looks down at his cat. "Do you think…you might be able to take me to the others who are turned?"

Ethan ponders that one and says, "They are centered in the castle. And we could get there probably. Getting /out/ might be a problem." There is a faint, sardonic grin at that. "And being a mage isn't like being a Spirit, Kaden. A mage is a mage because his will and focus are powerful enough to change the world. Mine wasn't. Probably no wonder that my teacher hasn't spoken to me in my dreams since this whole thing started. Well, not that I think I actually slept as a demon."

"Teacher that speaks to you in your dreams?" Kaden says sounding confused. "I don't need to get out, I can always get out later. But…maybe if I can get in..find someone who needs help….maybe I can cure someone else, help protect the earth." Kaden says as maybe it'll be a kind of redemption for him. "If I die in there who cares, I'll come back."

Ethan nods. "Yea. I started out being able to /see/ the lesser spirits, but I couldn't interact with them until he started showing up in my dreams. He's a wizard. And he taught me how to reach out and deal with them on their own terms. I was learning more and more until this mess." He shrugs. "Hopefully, he won't decide I'm not worth teaching. As for coming back, I don't think I'd bank on that if I were you. This is magic we're talking about and demonic magic at that. Some of the more powerful demons are sorcerers in their own right and a /really/ good sorcerer might be able to shut down even you guys and your abilities."

Kaden raises his eyebrows at Ethan in curiosity. "At least you had someone teaching you, I've kind of had to wing it." Though the other spirits helped him with a bit of control. "I'll come back, I can't die. It's not possible, I've tried. I've died a few times and I'm still here. And I'm not sure if you fully understand what we are, we're the elements. It's not like lesser or greater anything, it's what we are. Like I'm fire in a human's body."

Ethan sighs and says, "I get that. But I'm telling you, there's another /dimension/ involved. If the rules were the same, it wouldn't /be/ another dimension. You just need to be careful, that's all I'm saying. I don't want any of you getting hurt."
Kaden looks at Ethan cautiously. "Why do you care if any of us get hurt?" Mainly him he's wondering. "I don't mean anything to you, I'm just a guy who came running when Drew called him. I know I'm an ass but I really would have done anything to make sure he was okay." Which is the real reason he purified Ethan, more for Drew's sake. "Who knows, is that Castle in another dimension in central park? No it's here." That's his view of it.

Ethan considers that question for a moment and then says, "I wish I could show you how I see all of you. You keep saying that I don't get that you /are/ your element. I do. Because over and behind and beyond human vision, in the spirit world, you're like a pillar of pure, consuming flame, Kaden." He stretches out a hand towards the Spirit, palm out, "I can feel the heat from here. Or my spirit-self can. It's like being near the sun. And Drew is like a calm, warm ocean, deep and welcoming. Dmitri is as solid and strong as a mountain. Keith as wild and powerful and overwhelming as a summer thunderstorm and Xane is, well, he's a well of self and spirit that soothes away care just by being there." He shakes his head, "I know it sounds crazy but you're all too important, too special to risk letting you die permanently. I knew that even as a demon."

"There were others before me, if I end up dying, someone else will fill my role, so you don't have to worry about that." Kaden says it but doesn't fully mean it. "I used to wish I could die so much Ethan, I didn't want to live, I used to hate being what I am." Now, it's an odd sort of thing for him, he's still terrified of his power. "So if I die, the next spirit of fire will just come early."

Ethan replies, "Perhaps not if you die in there. That mountain and the castle on it don't belong here. And they don't follow the rules of our world, more than likely. It's a little bit of Limbo, brought through to earth. And the rules are /very/ different." He sits back and little and puts his hands on his knees, "And the next spirit of fire won't be you. He or she will be fire but they won't manifest that in the same way you do." He frowns and says, "It's impossible to explain this without being able to show you. But trust me each of you gives your element as much of a tinge of yourself as it shapes you, I think. Fire endures, of course. But Kaden-as-Fire is worth preserving." He grins and says, "Trust me, I'm a specialist in the elements."

Kaden stays quiet for a bit and just looks down at the open text book that's sitting there and eventually sighs. "Why is it you care what happens to me though? You keep talking about the element and then you talk about me as fire, I barely know you. I almost tried to beat you bloody the first time I met you. I'm not a good person, I'm not a nice guy. That's Drew, not me."

Ethan looks faintly amused and says, "Well a few reasons. First, I know what it's like to be the odd man out. Second, I get snapped at by /everyone/. I'm weird. My default persona is a teenager trying to sound like Dr. Strange. If people disliking me on first blush worried me, I'd be hiding under my bed half the time. Third, you're attractive. You all are. I know it's shallow but I want to get to know you better not just because you embody the elements I've spent my whole life trying to get closer to understanding and communing with but because all of you are, in your own ways, interesting in your own right."

Kaden flusters a bit, he's never gotten used to being called attractive. "My default persona is insufferable asshole." Kaden says finally cracking a smile. "Sorry, I know I'm difficult but…I just have a hard time around people. Xane and I used to have the worst arguments and I used to find anything to aruge with someone about. It's gotten better but I still have temper problems. I didn't exactly have it easy growing up and always getting irritated easily…I'm not good with people."

Ethan chuckles and shakes his head. "You're not that difficult. You just don't like people presuming. I can understand that. And deal with it. But …wow. You got Xane to argue? He seems like he's just one bad mustache away from being a zen master in a bad kung fu movie." He gives Kaden an obviously feigned impressed expression at that. "Well done." And then that faint smile again, "But okay, you're not good with people. Happily, you have a support structure of people who are. And you could learn."

"Xane and I did /not/ get along. He has this thing, where he can alter your emotions via his food. It's just his thing." Kaden says perfectly fine with it now. "After eating it once, and getting the effects, I got pissed. I hate anyone screwing with my emotions and anything drug like. I've been on so many drugs in the past that I can't stand it. So I told him I was never eating his food again, he took it personally, we argued a lot."

Kaden says, "Xane and I did /not/ get along. He has this thing, where he can alter your emotions via his food. It's just his thing." Kaden says perfectly fine with it now. "After eating it once, and getting the effects, I got pissed. I hate anyone screwing with my emotions and anything drug like. I've been on so many drugs in the past that I can't stand it. So I told him I was never eating his food again, he took it personally, we argued a lot.""

Ethan blinks and asks, "He can do that? He fed me, too. I wonder if he used that on me. You'd think I'd notice. And yea, like I said, from where I'm setting…" Which is about three feet from Kaden, sitting on an ottoman in front of where Kaden is sitting on the couch, with a text book and kitten nearby. "…It seems like you just don't like people screwing with your, um, sovereignty. Your control and dominion over yourself." He grins faintly, "No wonder you wanted to punch me that first time we met."

"Well it depends on how he was feeling when he made it, I dunno, I think he's learned better control like we all have." Kaden says as he is sitting back on the couch, his kitten on his lap, wearing only a pair of pajama pants. The open text book in front of him is completely ignored. "This is the first time I've really been able to do what I want and didn't have people telling me what to do all the time. Yeah, and if you every try to trap me again, I will punch you in the face."
Ethan tries not to laugh. He knows Kaden is serious, but still, it's a odd conversational gambit. He stands, pulling up the loose sweat pants Drew loaned him the night before a bit and stretching, going to the window to look out over the city, still in chaos and panic. With Drew's aid, the welts and bruises of his battle with the Spirits have mostly faded, but the marks of that water lash wrapped around his forearm and down his back in a diagonal stripe are still evident. He shakes his head and says, "I should get back out there. Fly over to the school and see if either of my uniforms survived the mess and then go help some people."

Kaden watches Ethan look out over the city and nods. "If you wanna go out there, just…be careful. And let us know what we can do to help." He knows that the other spirits would be willing. "And, I really do want to see if I can help anyone else like I did you. It's not fair to them to be stuck like that too from the way it sounds." Kaden looks back down at his cat and sighs. "It sucks when someone takes away what's you, makes you think your something else or so messed up you can't think."

Ethan shakes his head and says quietly, "I had a choice. I could have ignored it. I didn't. It seemed …expedient… at the time. But every fighter we deny the demons is a good thing. And some of them may even come back to fight for us." He looks back at Kaden and says, "And of course I want your help. You're the incarnations of elemental forces. You could all be out there saving people." He shrugs and smiles faintly, "Superhero outfit optional, of course. But yea, I have a lot to make up for and I'd love the help." With 'help' being perhaps an understatement given how much powerful than Ethan the Spirits are, as a rule.

Kaden stands up and walks over to Ethan and puts his hand on his shoulder, and Kaden's hand is quite warm. "I'm not a hero Ethan, I can barely keep myself in check but, I will help you. Just let me know what you want me to do. And sorry, you're not catching me in spandex." He'll walk around naked but not in spandex. Go figure. "We both have a lot to make up for."

Ethan smiles a bit broader, looking at the dim reflection of himself and Kaden behind him in the window. "Meh. Hero is an overrated term. I like to think of it as 'people who look good while fighting evil'." He probably should be deeply depressed about what's gone on and his part in it, but the truth is that he just doesn't have time for self-recrimination at the moment. Maybe later. Or not. He reaches up to cover Kaden's hand with his own for a moment and expands out his mystic senses, bathing in the spiritual radiance that helps make all of the Spirits so fascinating to him. Kaden's aura, of course, is like having the sun at his back. And then he turns around says, "But, before I fight evil, I to borrow a shirt, some shoes and maybe something to eat."

"Yeah well you and Drew and cover the 'look good while fighting evil part'." Was that a bit of a flirt from the fire spirit? Kaden looks at Ethan and nods. "I have some stuff you can borrow, I think it'll fit you." They are the same height even if Kaden is a bit thicker. "And there's always some of Xane's food left which is good cause I don't cook. I just burn stuff." He says with a slight chuckle.
Ethan laughs and says, "Stop fishing for compliments." He seems to take it for granted that Kaden knows he's attractive. "And thanks. Food first and then back to the dorm. Assuming it's still there. And they don't shoot me on sight." He pauses and says, "Wow. I pretty distinctly remember going back to pick up a few books on demon binding and kind of raising, er, hell. Hopefully the demon look kept anybody from recognizing me." Of course, he may have yelled 'Bow down before Ethan, Lord of Hell' a few times, but one doesn't repeat that whilst sane.

Kaden scowls at Ethan. "I'm not fishing for compliments." He says and he means it too. He doesn't think he's attractive at all. "And I'll get Drew and we'll go back to your dorm with you, at least walk you there. Or Drew can do his water thing. Make sure you make it there okay." Is Kaden actually starting to care for someone outside of the spirits? Who knew it was possible. "And if worse comes to worse, you're always welcome here."

Ethan grins at Kaden. "Well then look in a mirror some time. You're cute. And not just because I used to want to use you as a stepping stone to true, ultimate power, either." And then an even wider grin, "And if you trust me, I can fly us there. Maybe all three. It's a little wild but a lot of fun." A pause, "The landings are, um, a work in progress." There is a sense of massive understatement to that. And to the last, he pauses and says, "Let's hope I don't have to take you up on that. I'd like it, especially now, when the whole city is crazy, but I've been enough trouble."

Kaden shakes his head and grumbles. "You and Drew, you're both the same." Not really but there are some similarities. "What's the worst that can happen if you fly us there? Not like you can kill us." Kaden says teasing. "Come on, I'll get you some clothes, you can shower if you like and head up some of Xane's cooking. See what fancy foods whose names I don't know are shoved in there."

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