2011-01-02: Seeing Is Believing


Hosea_icon.jpg Jeremy_icon.jpg Kalindi_icon.jpg

Summary: Jeremy accidentally uses his powers on Hosea…

Date: January 2, 2011

Log Title: Seeing Is Believing

Rating: PG-13

NYC - City Hall Park

In front of the large white building with pillars, American Flags, and bell tower on top, is City Hall Park with its extravagant fountain. Four sets of black iron gas lamps sit on the four corners of the fountain, there the only gas lamps left in the city. Four spouts of water shoot in the center tier of the fountain and shower down into the water below. Four smaller pools sit on each side of the fountain where water pours into them from the main part. Benches sit all around the fountain with trees and flowers covering the grass behind.

It's a wonderful day! At least one would assume so from the expression on Kalindi's face. And while it's rather cold out here in the city, even that doesn't deter the normally cold sensitive girl from seeming happy. She has just closed a big deal which will put her in a favorable position for future negotiations. There is even a little bit of bounce in her step as she walks through the park, no more obligations keeping her back this afternoon. She's dressed in rather warm clothes, though, including a heavy winter jacket and snow pants, so while she does currently wear some jewellery, her golden fashion sense shines through. The young woman tugs on the straps of her backpack as she glances about.

Hosea is spending a little time this afternoon getting to know New York better. Tomorrow classes begin again, and he'll have little free time. Church is over for the day, and He finds himself at the last of his free time for the break. The giant of a man stands before a plaque, carefully tracing the words with his fingers as he reads about the history of the park. He looks up to regard a particular piece of the park that is mentioned on the plaque, and arches his brow as if he had learned something interesting. From the movement of his finger across the golden letters, it's clear that reading isn't his strong suit, and he stops at the longer words. He hasn't noticed Kalindi yet, his focus on trying to sound out the word "independence".

With classes starting back up tomorrow at Barnes, Jeremy just wants to spend his last day outside in some fresh air. He stops in his walk not to far from where Hosea is reading and takes out a cigarette to light. He's dressed in a leather jacket over jeans and with his scarf, hat and gloves, it definitely looks like he's dressed for the cold weather. He looks around the park and is a bit surprised the fountain doesn't freeze in this weather. While looking around he spots Kalindi and gives her a small wave.

Kalindi pauses when Jeremy waves at her, and she seems to have a blank expression for one, two, three… About three seconds before it lights back up and she returns the wave in a less small gesture, navigating her way toward the young man. "Well, hello," she says in her strange accent, "It has been a little while since I have seen you before." Her eyes flick to the other young man (though because of his size, he does not seem young) for a moment as she just marvels at how tall her is. At 5 foot nothing, Kalindi is easily impressed by height.

Hosea turns back to see Kalindi and Jeremy briefly, hiw long curly hair bouncing as he turns his head. "Excuse me," he asks them in his rich African voice. Decidedly Nigerian, for those who would know. "Could I trouble you to help me wit dis word?" The word his finger has stopped on is 'almshouse'. "I am afraid dat I am not da best reader." He gives a rather cheery and genuine looking smile toward the two, hoping that they read better than he does.

There's a smile to Kalindi as Jeremy nods. "Yes it has been. Happy New Year." He says to her before he hears Hosea and turns to look at the word he's having trouble with. "Almshouse. It's like housing for people who can't afford it." He says trying to explain it as it's a word that isn't really used anymore. He looks back to Kalindi again and smiles. "So how have you been ma'am."

Kalindi looks at the word and frowns for a moment before Jeremy says it. English is not her first language, not by a longshot, so she just shrugs once Jeremy explains it and notes to Hosea, "I did not know it either. It is not a word I see." She looks back towards Jeremy and notes, "Ah, yes, a happy New Year to you, too. I have been very well. I have just made an excellent business deal, it has been a good day."

"Ahh," Hosea says, glancing back at where the house tood, now replaced with bushes and Christmas lights. "Dey have such things in Africa," he says. "Though I think a little different from America, most likely. Though dey used it to execute people at, maybe not so different." Not attempting to interrupt their conversation, the tall figure turns back to the plaque, following slowly along the lettering as he continues to read.

Looking at Hosea, Jeremy gets a bit of an uncomfortable feeling. "They used New Years to execute people?" He asks sounding confused as he tries to hide a shudder. He then nods to Kalindi. "That's good, about it being a good day. I have been enjoying today myself, just being outside and such." Not really doing much.

"The al-ums-house you are talking about?" asks Kalindi, pronouncing the word very deliberately so that it sticks in her memory. She will not be outsmarted by a word again. Or at least not that word. "They execute the people who are poor, is that is?" She looks momentarily confused and says, "How strange." To Jeremy, she adds, "I do not like being outside so much, myself, most of the time. Too cold! I am always cold out here."

"Ahh…" Hosea says uncertainly. "Da house, maybe not like Africa. Dey did not use dis one to execute poor people, dey used it to execute criminals." The implication is that in Africa, sometimes they do execute people for being poor." He puts his hands back in his pockets, and agrees with Kalindi's statement. "Yes, America is a vedy cold country. I do not understand how people of old days survived in dis weatha. Dey must have been vedy creative, or burned a lot of wood."

"It's cold but it could always be worse." Jeremy says leaving it kinda vague. "They don't execute poor people here, an Almshouse was to help people afford housing who couldn't back in the day. Now it's more like what is called projects." He explains but doesn't know if Hosea will understand that. He takes a final drag off his cigarette and puts it out on the ground. "When you live outside, you find ways to survive."

"People can be very creative in harsh situations," says Kalindi, nodding her head slowly at that, "very resilient, yes? But where I am from, we have different problems from cold. I do not like the problem of cold at all." She shrugs and looks towards Jeremy, "But smart people they will survive these things. It is why people are still alive at all. For being smart."

"Dat is impressive," Hosea says. "I did not know dat people in America live outside!" He sounds eager to hear about Jeremy now. "I grew up in da rainforest. I spent all my time outside. It was a vedy good time, a warm and beatuiful place. Nevah cold. Though vedy dangerous. I do not know dat it would be so dangerous heah. Are dere dangerous animals in da city heah? I have nevah seen dem. He shudders a little with the cold, even though he wears a heavy coat.

Jeremy tenses up quite a bit and goes to take out another cigarette. He tries not to smoke so much but since the conversation is turning into something he's not comfortable with he turns to his nicotine comfort. "People who can't afford a place to live will live outside, the homeless. Dangerous animals…not really. Dangerous people, definitely." He says quietly as he struggles to light his cigarette, eventually taking off one of his gloves to use the lighter. Taking a deep breath and pausing for a bit as he touches it. It takes him over a minute to light the thing.

Kalindi frowns slightly, body language something that she can pick up on, but she returns to the conversation, "Yes, dangerous people. Thugs and such. I have been attacked more than one time in this city, myself, and this never by animals who are not human." She shrugs and adds for Hosea, "I do not much like to talk about where I grew up, myself. It was a strange place."

Hosea arches his brow. "I have nevah been attacked in dis city," he says. "Except during da attack on Mutant town a few weeks ago." The event seems to phase him relatively little as he thinks of it, or if it does, he hides it rather well. He looks up at the buildings around. "Da people heah are not dat dangerous, I think," he makes a counter observation. As he turns his neck up, it reveals a scar that runs across his throat, possibly a very deep slash wound from some point in his past which he managed to survive. Of course, when you are Hosea's size, there are fewer people interested in picking a fight with you than when you are Kalindi's size. "I am rude, I have not even introduced myself! My name is Hosea Ikbuku."

"I didn't grow up here, I grew up in Ohio. It's a…normal place." Jeremy says quietly as he is kind of tense and not really making any eye contact but then he is a bit of the skittish sort. "Mutant town…well, that is just one kind of danger in the city. Like Kalindi said…thugs." He says not expanding on that. He does notice the scar that Hosea has but he doesn't make any mention of it, introducing himself in return instead. "Jeremy."

"Oh, that… I was very annoyed to have been there. I wanted some cotton candy, it is very sweet, but instead I end up fighting some robots and the stand is destroyed," says Kalindi at the mention of the Mutant Town incident. She remembers having seen Hosea there, but makes no mention of that, since she assumes he saw her in turn, and in particular, saw some of the things she did. "Kalindi, but you may call me Kali if you would rather. Some people do. Kali is a more English sounding name."

Hosea holds his hand out to shake to each of his new acquaintences. "Ahh, it is good to meet you both," he says. "I do not fear thugs," he tells them. "Thugs are usually vedy frightened if you can separate dem from dere friends. Like a pack of wild dogs. Alone dey are worthless."

"Kalindi and I have met before, she's helped me out." Jeremy says in the same quiet voice before shrugging to Hosea. "It's not as easy as you make it sound." He doesn't know Hosea is a mutant but at the same time he's dealt with the scum of the New York City streets. He extends a hand to Hosea to shake, forgetting that he didn't put his glove back on as it's still shoved in his pocket.

Kalindi extends her hand slightly, but drops it when Jeremy goes in for the shake, resolving to do that social transaction when this handshake is over. "Well, I am not very frightening to most thugs upon first look. They see a delicate girl who is barely five feet tall and wears pretty things, even when separated." Between her powers and her training from Taskmaster, though, they tend not to see a delicate girl for long.

Hosea's smiling as he shakes Jeremy's hand. He's not once they make contact. The rush of Jeremy's mind and memories fills him instantly. That's a lot for a single person to handle at once. He retracts, gripping the sign he had been reading, and putting himself in a combat ready position instinctively. "What…what was dat?" he barks, almost a demanding tone. If he was imposing when he was gentle sounding, he's downright scary now.

The same happens to Jeremy that he gets a rush of Hosea's memories, and what he's been through. He hangs onto Hosea's hand for a little over three minutes, not able to let go until the flashes are done. Once he lets go, he stumbles back a few steps before falling on his rear on the sidewalk. He stares at his hand in horror, followed by Hosea in horror before speaking in a shaky voice. "Oh god…I didn't realize…don't kill me. It was an accident." He pleads with the killer. Or what he thinks is a killer.

Kalindi looks between the two men after the most intimate looking handshake -ever-. The young woman is confused at the dialogue that passes between the two, "What has just occured?" She touches her earring lightly, expecting some kind of conflict to occur, readying her powers just in case she gets caught up in something.

Hosea finally pulls free, knuckles white with frustration as he stares down at Jeremy. He is not a happy man. It probably doesn't put Jeremy's mind at eas that he advances, a scowl on his face. "What was dat which you have done?" he demands. He's been a little on edge since he was the attack on Mutant Town, and his usual forgiving demeanor has been strained. He does not answer Kalindi, because he really doesn't. He doesn't take a swing, but from the memories that he just saw, Jeremy has good cause to be absolutely terrified.

Jeremy quickly fumbles to put his glove back on while still frozen to his position on the ground. It almost looks like the poor kid is in tears. "I'm sorry, really…I forgot..my glove. I, it's my powers. I can't control them. I can see things." He says trembling a bit. He looks to Kalindi and shakes his head. "Skin contact…" He whispers before looking back to Hosea. "I promise, I won't tell anyone what I saw, just don't kill me."

Kalindi seems to contemplate this for a moment, bringing her finger up to rest on her lip before she says to Hosea, "Stand down. He does not intend you harm, and any conflict will be a waste of resources for all of us." She takes a step towards Jeremy, kneeling to check if he's alright, "Do you have your glove on you? I have another pair of mittens in my backpack which you may borrow." Though they are a pastel pink, they would function.

"I am not going to hurt you," Hosea answers, softening his stance a little. After a moment, he reaches down to offer a hand to help Jeremy. He only now realizes fully why Jeremy's response is so strong. "You…you saw?" he doesn't finish the thought, but he knows what the other teen means. He looks back at Kalindi. "I will not hurt him, but he needs to be less careless. What he just saw is not something dat people should ever have to see." His eyes turn back to Jeremy. "Dat is da past," he says. "It is not who I am now."

Jeremy looks at Hosea's hand and is about to take it but something makes him change his mind and push himself up. "I just forgot to put it back on after lighting my cigarette." He whispers to her as he holds up his hand showing the glove is back on. He turns to look at Hosea. "Don't talk to me about being less careless. You don't live everyday with this, you can at least control your powers. Yes I did see your past, I know what you've done to so don't try to preach to me. You're just like them. Hiding who you really are." He's talking about his parents.

Kalindi glances between Hosea and Jeremy, frowning slightly now. She does chime in, "I do not think he was being careless on purpose. Had he touched me, yes, I would be upset, but I do not think that he is being careless. There are lapses in concentration sometimes." She rises back to her feet when Jeremy does and says to him, "You have glimpsed who he was? It is who he was. He has not wronged you."

Hosea give a glance sideways at Kalindi, as if he thinks it's not her place. "No, I do not hide it. I killed many people." He's willing to reveal it to the third party. He doesn't hold the secret in. "But dat was another time. God has changed my heart. You do not have understanding. You have not lived my life." He watches as Jeremy gets back to his feet. "But God has given you your life. He will give you knowledge and wisdom if you receive it. Do not think dat you must understand my life."

Jeremy gets really quiet for a bit and looks down, he wishes he was anywhere but there at this moment but he doesn't know what to do. "I'm sorry." Is what he whispers as he doesn't agree with everything Hosea says but that's not what is important now. "I've seen you're life, I understand more than you think Hosea. Everything, it's up here." He says tapping on his temple. "I don't like it. I don't want this but I deal with it. You don't understand what it's like, knowing who people really are."

Kalindi crosses her arms a bit defensively after Hosea speaks the last part, and then looks off, seeming to focus on other thoughts quietly.

Hosea taps his own head. "I saw what your life has been as well," he tells Jeremy. "I tink I have an idea. But you have da luxury. My life did not actually happen to you. You do not know what it means to deal with it," he challenges. "Do you know what it feels like to kill a man? Do you?" he asks, his voice probably a bit louder than is comfortable for a public place, but he's not yelling. He just has a loud voice.

Jeremy fumbles for a cigarette and lights it, fumbling with the lighter a bit. "No." He eventually responds to Hosea. "And you saw mine as well?" He asks sounding confused as that hasn't happened before. "And what do you mean I have the luxury. I'm just like you, didn't really have any where until a school found me." He says still not making eye contact with him.

Kalindi tilts her head at Hosea's question. The answer is yes, but fortunately nobody has posed it of -her-. She looks at her hands for a moment and shrugs. No big deal. "Schools?" she says, raising her eyebrows slightly, before adding to Hosea, "You might scare people when asking questions like that without being quieter."

Hosea glances up and around at Kalindi's warning, not having realized his voice level was too high. He nods solemnly toward Kalindi. "You are blessed," Hosea tells Jeremy. "I hope you never know what it is like. You cannot imagine da burden. But know dat because my life has had different burdens den yours, I do not make light of your troubles." He reaches out carefully to attempt to put his hand on Jeremy's shoulder, but only if he doesn't recoil. "And you, Miss Kali," he says. "I am sorry dat you are troubled with dis event. I do not mean for you to be put outside by us."

"Oh yes, I'm so fucking blessed." Jeremy spits out a bit more bitterly than intended. He still talks in a quiet voice. He doesn't recoil from the touch but the tenseness is there. He does jump slightly when touched. "Sorry, Kalindi…I didn't mean for this to happen. But..school…is why I'm not living on the streets anymore like when we first met. I'm going to a school now." He mutters quietly.

"No, I have nothing else scheduled today. I will be making dinner, but my marinade for the tofu will be there when I get home," says Kalindi, shrugging at that, "It is an accident, and these things require no apology. If it was, eh, more intentional, then we would have more of a problem. And it is good that you are going to school, it is better than before. You look healthy." She brushes some of her hair aside with her mitts.

Hosea squeezes Jeremy's shoulder lightly before retracting his hand. "You are afraid of me, still?" he asks. "I suppose dat you would be a fool not to fear what you have seen. God has taken me from dat life, and made me a new creation. But you will have to see dat for yourself if you come to know me." He looks back at Kalindi. "Yes, it is good dat men like Jeremy and myself have somewhere to go and receive an education. It was not available in Nigeria, and I am vedy thankful for it."

Jeremy closes his eyes and takes a deep breath and nods. "Thanks Kalindi. I'm still too thin but at least I'm eating better." And he has a place to sleep. He scratches the back of his head and looks down at his feet. "Hosea…just like you don't want people to know about what you did, that there are secrets, I have them too so…it's not just that I'm afraid of you."

Nodding, Kalindi says, "Well, you will gain weight after you eat better for a little while." While Kalindi's thin, it's certainly not an unhealthy thinness. She has a healthy frame and tight muscles from her training and her diet. "One day, I might cook for you, like what I said I would do when you were not so fortunate." To Hosea, she nods and notes, "I am doing homeschooling, which is good for me. I am, ah, a little weak in English so I would fall behind quickly."

Hosea, having seen Jeremy's life story, nods. "I will not give your story to others," he tells the thin young man. "But dere is hope. Life can be better for you. I am living proof dat dere is hope." He nods to Kalindi. "My mother homeschooled me until I was twelve," he tells Kalindi. Jeremy would know why it changed at that point, of course. "Dere is nothing wrong with homeschooling."

Jeremy nods to Hosea. "Thank you." His voice has barely gone above a whisper since he 'saw'. "Thank you Kalindi. I might have to take you up on that offer sometime." He says slowly smoking with his hand that's still shaking slightly. "I know, I'm already turning things around." He shakes his head. "I just missed three years of school so I'm an eighteen year old sophomore."

Kalindi shakes her head and says, "No, having private tutors is fine for me. I am almost caught up with my age category for most things. I was not very well educated in matters of the world before." She puts her mitted hands into the pockets of her coat, "But I have many things to attend to, school is just one of many many."

Hosea nods, "I know da feeling. It is strange though," he says. "I suppose dat you know dat already." He gives Kalindi a look, and then back to Jeremy. "Is it always dis strange to know so much about a person?" he asks. It feels like he has two lives, only one of them, he didn't live.

"It's just not people, it's also objects. Anything I touch." Jeremy says. "It's very weird, I don't like it but I can't help it." He says rubbing the back of his neck. "It can get over whelming, especially after my powers came into being." He says. "I actually like school, it gives me something to focus on."

"I guess you know a lot about your gloves and clothes…" says Kalindi, eyeing those articles once Jeremy says that much. "At least you know what has been manufactured in the right way and what has not. It is good quality control, no?" She smiles. She made a funny! People don't generally notice when she does, though.

Hosea arches his brow at Kalindi. "Know much about his clothes?" he echoes. "What is dere to know?" For all he knows they are all made the same way. "I do not envy your powah," he tells Jeremy. "It is something dat must cause you much trouble in your life." Like just now, when he discovered that a complete stranger has a past as dark as any SS Officer from the second world war.

Jeremy nods to Kalindi before looking at Hosea. "Have you ever worn handme downs? I can see exactly who wore what before me and everything from what happened to every time it was washed. With new clothes, I can see exactly how and were they were made. It's not easy." Sometimes it takes him quite a while to get dressed. "I even have to eat wearing gloves or else if I touch an apple or something, I see everything." He explains in that same quiet voice. "That's why I did what I did, cause I couldn't deal with it."

While Hosea will know what that last bit means, it flies right over Kalindi's head. Her smile fades back to its previous state when nobody laughs at her joke, and she tucks her hands around the straps of her backpack, "I would not like to see the entire pasts of people or things. It sounds bothersome."

Hosea nods, "What I did, I did because I was not able to deal with what was around me, eitha," he relates to Jeremy. "You may yet have a great powah, though," he tells the other boy. "Look at her, and me? We cannot know all da things dat have happened to a person, but you can. To know dis, you can help bring dem healing. It may be difficult now, but sometimes we may receive a blessing dat seems like a curse so dat others may receive what is good. I hope you are able to use your ability to glorify God."

"Don't." Jeremy begins to Hosea shaking his head. "Don't try to sugar coat it. And I'm sorry, I know you and God are on good terms but him and I, were not so much." He says trying to be nice about it. "Don't try to make me feel better about this stuff..please. Just like you are a different person and how you are fine and happy with being this new you, I'm still working on it and this happy stuff, doesn't work for me." He looks at Kalindi and nods. "It's very hard to deal with but I manage. Or try to."

"Well, it is good to at least try for these things. It can be hard, so I have heard," says Kalindi, shrugging at that, before touching her earring again. "Perhaps I shall go, though. It will be good to make dinner before it is too late in the evening." The earring seems to turn into a strand between her fingers, which spins back to connect to the gold in her backpack.

Hosea doesn't bother trying to explain his past, since Jeremy knows it. Of all people who haven't been on good terms with God, Hosea understands the concept exceptionally well. "I am changed, but do not think dat da weight of my life does not still hang around my neck like a stone. And I would be a liar if I was to say dat da same evil does not seek daily to take me back to wickedness. Da lock cannot be easily placed back on da devil once he is loose. Dere is no sugah." His eyes shift in gaze to follow Kalindi's hand as she pulls the earing from her ear, watching as it rejoins the backpack. He doesn't comment, but instead gives the girl a studious stare.

Having seen Kalindi display her powers before, Jeremy doesn't find it weird or odd. "Thank you again Kalindi. Enjoy your tofu dinner." He says as gives her a nod before turning to Hosea. "There isn't a week that has gone by since I quit that I don't want to go back to it. So I understand that weight a bit. Right now, a part of me would like nothing more to find that bliss again once this conversation is over but I have to make sure I don't. Instead, I stick to smoking, it's the lesser of the two evils."

Kalindi flips her wrist forward, tossing the familiar gold disc onto the ground. "I think I will. I enjoy fried tofu very very much," says Kalindi, smiling slightly at that. "You two, take care of yourselves, I will be going now." Waiting only for the obligatory few moments to allow replies, Kalindi taps the disc with the toe of her boot and makes it fly up off the ground with her on it.

Hosea nods, not arguing about the smoking. It's not a bad habit he is very concerned with. "I am glad dat you do not let dat take you back," he says. "It would be terrible if your life was cut short by something such as dat."

As Kalindi leaves, Jeremy takes another drag from his cigarette before putting it out. "She's really nice, and helpful." As Hosea's probably seen his relationship with Kalindi where she gave him a sandwich when he was living out on the streets. "I don't know if it would be so terrible. It wouldn't be as bad as if my parents found me." And he believe that as he's terrified of his family.

"It is a terrible thing dat you cannot rely on your family," Hosea answers. "I cannot imagine if I could not talk to my mother for fear of her hate." That isn't one of the burdens he has had to bear. In fact, the constant desire to protect and watch over his mother is one of the things that helps him keep pressing on despite his difficult life. "But dere are things bettah den losing to drugs, still. I am glad dat you now have people who you can trust. Your school seems to be vedy much like my own."

"Yeah..people I can trust." Jeremy says reluctantly as he's to afraid to let himself trust anyone. "You saw then, my parents hate mutants, they kill mutants. I saw everything they were planning…they knew I was a mutant and I was just a demonstration to them." He says shaking his head. "I guess, it kind of does. And…can you do me a favor?" He asks cautiously.

Hosea nods, pulling himself up to his full height and looking down at Jeremy. "Absolutely, friend," he says. Though he doesn't necessarily know Jeremy…he does. It's a strange experience to be certain. "I would be glad to help you in whatever way I can."

"Tell Robin, I said hello. I met her a while back…well you know that. And I saw that you go to school with her." Jeremy says running his hand through his hair. "I have to go back to school…I'm sorry about all that Hosea. I didn't want to know all that about you and vice versa."

Hosea smiles, "Do not worry," he says. "I shall tell her. Thank you for da apology, and I am sorry dat I frightened you with my response." Of course, given what he would have done a few years ago, the response is nothing. Still, Hosea was angry, and it's true that he was ready to fight after experiencing Jeremy's powers. "Robin is a beautiful girl. I am sure she will be glad to know dat you are well."

Jeremy nods awkwardly and looks around. "Well…take care Hosea. It was..uh..nice meeting you. Take care." He says before heading off to go back to Barnes.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License