2011-11-18: The Twit And The Pendulum


Heather_icon.jpg Quenton_icon.jpg Shane_icon.jpg

Summary: Quenton barges into the Art Room to vent a little, and ends up swinging back and forth between several social states.

Date: Date the log took place. November 18, 2011

Log Title: The Twit and the Pendulum

Rating: PG-13

Xavier Mansion — Art Room

The Art Room has pictures of classic artists and small sculptures of famous pieces of art around the room. Any art supply you need may be found in this room, a large variety of paints, charcoals, markers, pencils, clays, canvases, easels, paper, and much more are accessible for the students. A large kelm is in one of the far corners of the room as well. On one side of the art room are a few sewing machines with a large variety of fabrics and sewing supplies for the students as well.

Occasionally, Heather comes into the art room to do her painting. They sometimes seem be realistic with abstract elements, reminiscent of real life scenes, the characters on the canvases envelopped in colours, and in this particular image, there are many such colours, one for each person in the crowd, while the central figure is separate and has a royal purple not envelopping, but a tiny thread surrounding. It seems to be some kind of scene in a park. The girl is wearing her thrift clothes, which makes sense in this setting as there are bits of paint getting on her clothes. Her hand seems to move rather quickly, but carefully.

In a relatively distant corner of the room, a sewing machine chatters in short, mechanical bursts, as Shane passes a pair of pieces of blue cloth under the needle. Her large, soundproofed headphones clamped over her head, she works in silence, occasionally brushing a fire-engine red lock of hair away from her eyes as she concentrates in content silence.

And then, in a fit that usually is kept private, Quenton storms into the room, shoving a desk away and sending it crashing into another while his fist moves towards one of the sculptures, a rather ugly looking one, shattering it in a punch. He lets out a little roar of anger, which doesn't sound animalistic, but is enough to make the windows rattle. Realizing who's with him, though, he halts, glancing about, and, just as fast as he came in, moving to step out.

Heather doesn't seem to pay Quenton very much mind when he comes in, until the point that the sculpture receives that punch. She ducks behind her canvas to make sure she's not hit by any debris and then gets up to her feet, playing on her tape recorder, "Was that your sculpture?"

Between the ear-shattering music pumping through her headphones, and the noise-cancelling effect of the large, armored cups themselves, the crashing and roaring noises don't penetrate her focus; what does, however, is the vibrations of Quenton's roar, setting her teeth on edge and flipping her panic-reaction switch. Whirling around, she tears her headphones off her neck, staring wide-eyed at Quenton, and it's a moment before she remembers to hit the pause button on her iPod, treating the room to a noticeably audible snippet of Just like the Pied piper, led rats through the streets… We dance like marionettes, swaying to the Symphony… of Destruction! Once the music is cut off, she slowly gets to her feet. "…What the hell, Q?"

Feeling sort of like an attention whore, because well, that little roar was sort of an attention grabber. He falls silent, and clears his throat. "Yeah. It was mine. Bad day at the mall." He sounds for once, sheepish, before he remembers who he's supposed to be. "Doesn't fucking matter. I'm good now. Can go back to what you were doing." The desk wasn't his, though, and so he grabs that and drags it back to where it should be. He glances up at Shane and looks guiltily away. "Hey." That's all he gots.

Heather nods slowly at the response from Quenton and says, sitting back down on her stool, "I suppose you could just pass that off as performance art if you were so inclined." She continues working on her piece, while her tape recorder continues to play, "Then you could say you were being constructive rather than destructive with your anger."

"….Y'sure?" Shane says, in response to Q's statement. After a moment, she shrugs. "'F you say so. Just finishin' up a piece anyway, rest can wait. Sup?"

"I don't care if I pass or whatever," Quenton replies, but at least he's being nicer at the moment, rubbing at his nape while watching Heather's working, than glancing over towards Shane, whom he can't seem to keep his eyes on, glancing up at the ceiling. "Uh, yeah. Don't wanna… make you stop whatever."

Heather nods her head a few times rapidly at Quenton's response and replies, "Then do not pass or whatever. Ultimately, I do not know your goals." She continues working on her piece, adding some of the threads of colour to each individual in the crowd scene, most of the colours mingling with others.

Shane lifts a shoulder. "S'fine. Most of th'rest's embroidery. Need my kit from my room for that." As if to punctuate her words, she switches the machine off, nudging a second stool out. "So what's up?"

"Yeah. I met someone like you at the mall today," Quenton shoots towards Heather, though perhaps that's unfair. Still, he steps on over towards Shane, hesitating before dropping onto the stool limply and resting his hand on the table. "What are you doing?" he wonders towards the speedy girl, before glancing over at Shane briefly, wetting his lips in a nervous, needless gesture.

"Someone like me?" repeats Heather on the tape recorder, raising an eyebrow lightly at Quenton, "A fast worlder? Or a brunette?" She continues working on the piece and she replies, "I'm working on a self-portrait that isn't a self-portrait. I'm working on visual journaling."

Shane blinks, eyebrows drawing together just a bit at the look, and the nervous gesture. "…Or… y'know… nevermind, I guess," she says after a moment. "Asked twice what happened, but y'know, whatever."

Quenton clears his throat, explaining towards Shane; "I mean, that. That's what happened. Ran into an emotionally crippled person like Heather here, though a lot more of a bitch. She said a few things that I didn't like. And some empath at the mall." His hand lifts, curls into a fist, and smashes into his temple, though it does nothing but make the air ripple around it. "I didn't mean to make it sound like I was ignoring you." And then a glance towards Heather. "Visual journaling?"

"I wouldn't say emotionally crippled," says Heather, furrowing her brows lightly at the comment as she continues working on the image, glancing over as she feels the air motion, and adding, "Visual journaling is like… taking moments or thoughts from my life in the way I do with my journal, and instead painting them… sometimes an image is more significant."

"Crippled?" The word is startled out of Shane, eyes flicking from Heather back to Quenton, then she makes… some sort of noise. "Pfsht. Look around you, Q. Ain't no shortage of emotional cripples here." Rolling her eyes, she shakes her head, lifting up one heavily-booted foot and popping what looks to be an iPod battery out of the heel. "I mean lookit me. 'N then there's you." Popping the battery currently slotted into her machine, she swaps old one for fresh.

"Yeah," Quenton murmurs, at Shane's words, body rigid a moment. "You're right about that." He relaxes slightly, watching Shane switch the batteries. Then just watching her for a long while, before averting his eyes behind those sunglasses of his, which he removes. "Still. She was a bitch. I wanted to punch her. Moreso than I wanted to punch anyone since I got to this school. Except, you know, you."
"So wait a sec, you paint… the news?" he then asks Heather.

Heather looks over to Quenton with a bit of a perplexed expression, "The news according to me, I suppose. Events in my life. In the same way one might write in a journal or in a diary, I do the same, but with the added imagery to help me remember frozen moments, how I felt."

Shane glances over her shoulder at Heather, an eyebrow rising in mild interest, eyes then moving to Quenton. "…Sounds like it," she says after a moment, stuffing the old battery in a pocket. "Good thing y'didn't though. No way you'd get off th'hook for that."

"Like a video diary, but on paper? Or something?" Quenton scratches at his cheek, rough enough to leave little bloody lines. "And yeah, I guess that would have been bad." He shifts awkwardly, before wondering, a little quietly, "Eight tomorrow?"

Heather shrugs lightly at Quenton and says, "Yes, something like that. It's a journal entry of a particular kind. Like a video journal, but with images… I never know what to do with the canvases when they are complete, though."

"…Sure, eight," Shane murmurs back, before lifting her head. "Should put'm up on Etsy or somethin'. Prolly people'd buy some of'm if you wanted. Be surprised what folks'll pay money for."

Quenton just sort of nods, and then glances back over towards Heather, lifting a hand to rub at his nape. "Yeah. What she said." He's agreeable today. For some reason or the other.

Heather considers that for a few moments and says, "I've sold some of them before, at a craft fair for the school dance, for fundraising… But they are all dated. The time and the date… I want to know where they go." She looks between Quenton and Shane before shrugging, "It's important."

Shane lifts a shoulder. "S'your art, your call what t'do with it. S'why I don't make costumes for other people 'f I can help it; dealing with what they want's a pain in the ass sometimes, 'n besides it's just nice, lookin' in my closet seein' what I made with my own hands." Glancing back at Quenton, she raises an eyebrow. "Anythin' in p'ticular?" she murmurs softly, out the side of her mouth.

"Uh, how about… Baccano?" Quenton tries, quietly, while he shifts uneasily in his seat, voice suddenly very hushed while he glances over at Shane, putting his sunglasses back on to cover his eyes, wetting his lips again in that nervous gesture.

Heather's eyes flick from the pair and back to her canvas, to the pair again, "What are you two talking about with your whispers? Don't whisper about me. You can say whatever you want to my face."

"Sure, Baccano works," Shane murmurs, flushing beet-red as the attempt at subtle conversation is caught out. "…Ain't talkin' 'bout you, Heather," she says, closing her eyes for a moment. "Serious. 'F I had anythin' to say 'bout you, I'd either shut up or say it right to y'face."

"And I'd sure as hell say it to your face," Quenton mutters, switching back into… Quenton mode, and out of talking to Shane mode. "Trust me, sunshine. t's my thing." He leans back, now, lacing his fingers behind his nape, confidence regained.

Heather eyes Shane and Quenton for a moment and then shrugs her shoulders in a gestures that seems to suggest she wants to ask, 'what then?' before she continues to work on the image, now slowing down quite a lot as she's putting her finishing touches on it.
Bait that Shane doesn't seem inclined to rise to. "…So what's that paintin' of, anyway?" she says, nodding toward the canvas.

Quenton shifts a little, glancing towards Heather's canvas as well, though not letting his own curiosity bring him to speech. He's just thinking about how hard it must be for her to fill in the right colors.

"A moment. A memory, a lonely memory. This is how their voices must have looked, the way they spoke, but it wasn't the way I saw it. Or could see it if I wanted to. It's a journal entry, sometimes it's how I feel, and it's the memory that shows it best… It needed an image," replies Heather, focusing on putting the last few finishing touches on it before putting her brush down, peering at it. "Now it simply has to dry…"

Shane grunts in acknowledgment, falling silent for a moment as she looks more closely at the canvas. "…Put it in front of th'window," she says finally, slipping off the stool and gathering up the scraps of her current project. "Dries quicker in the sun. … …When there *is* any sun, anyway." The needle of the machine is retracted, the thread snipped and knotted off with a deftness born of long familiarity.

Quenton glances off towards the window a moment, hand dropping to his knee. "So do you do this out of sort of some neccessity, and not for self expression?" he asks Heather abrubtly. He is genuinely curious about that, leaning a little limply against Shane.

Heather furrows her brows in thought at Quenton's question, looking over towards him, "Both, maybe. I have to keep track of things. I have to keep track of things by the time on my watch." She raises her wrist to show her digital watch. Either of the other two might have noticed that Chloe has a more worn and trashed version of the same watch. "I have to keep track of things because it's hard to keep track of myself. It's self-expression, but it is necessary." Heather nods once and then brings her canvas up to the window.

Shane falls silent again, bundling the cloth up in front of her chest, a strange expression on her face; something close to understanding, perhaps? "…You… um… got any paintings of that World of Crystal thing? Just… y'know… wondering."

Not exactly understanding himself, but bobbing his head in acknowlegement, at least, Quenton glances over at Shane, a bit curiously at her own reaction, but doesn't voice said curiosity. Instead, he just shrugs. "Do you like doing it?" He follows his cotton candy haired companion's question with.

"It's comforting, to solidify memories that I've only seen. These are things I know are real, not tailored by an illusion, as I had a hand in their creation…" says Heather in response to Quenton, lips quirking up slightly at that. "They are /my/ reality." Her eyes drift towards Shane after she reviews her tape recorder messages again, and she plays, "Crystalworld? I have it. On a small canvas, it's a very very quiet piece… Most of the time. But you know that."

Shane nods slowly, apparently satisfied with the answer… though visibly not comforted. "Yeah… It was," she murmurs after a moment's reverie, then looks over her shoulder. "…You should probably see it, Q… Heather, um… think it'd be okay sometime to show 'im?"

Quenton furrows his brow at Shane's words, now, glancing over at her yet again, before glancing back to Heather, scratching at his scalp, running fingers through his dark hair. "If you want me to," he mumbles, awkwardly. "Is the Crystalworld the place that…" He doesn't finish, just looks at Shane questioningly.

"It's in my closet. All things I have are free to be viewed by anyone. I have no need of privacy, disinterest is my smokescreen. I can bring it out without much delay," says Heather, nodding once at Shane. "It's a memory image, though, it may not be exactly what you saw. But I suspect… it is a fairly exact replica, with myself instead of you."

"Yeah," Shane says in answer to Quenton's abortive question, nodding once to Heather. "Prob'ly is… Could you? I mean you don't have to if you don't want, just…" And here Shane seems to run out of words, sinking back into the chair she'd occupied by the sewing table, fiddling with the cloth in her lap.

Quenton clears his throat, just nodding in reply to Shane and ruffling his hair once more. "Yeah," he finally says. "Yeah. I'd like to see it," he murmurs, glancing over at the girl before turning his eyes back to Heather, shrugging his shoulders a little. "If you don't mind, that is." Back to nice, awkward Quenton. Mutant bipolar.

Heather nods once and puts her tape recorder around her neck. Her edges begin to blur slightly before the rest of her follows in a rapid dash out of the area, presumably to get the completed canvas. Given the speed of her run, it's unlikely that she will be terribly long.

"…Sorry," Shane says to Quenton after Heather leaves. "Just… couldn't find the words for it, before… 'n maybe takin' a look'll show you what I meant, back when I was talking about it before."

Quenton shakes his head, awkwardly shifting now and glancing at Shane's face. "Don't… have to be sorry about it or whatever. Though why do you want me to see the painting? Because what I said about being alone?" He clears his throat yet again. "I mean, just weird. You don't gotta worry about me. Hell, people will be better off, anyway. And it's not like I'm leaving any time soon. I still got a couple years in this hell hole."

"I *don't,*" Shane snaps back, out of reflex, before settling just enough to shake her head. "It's not *weird,* okay? Just… seriously. I was way fuckin' serious when I was telling you about it. And I sucked at it. So take a look, okay?"

Heather returns into the room, just as quickly as she had left, holding the relatively small canvas under her arm. She glances between Shane and Quenton, and then holds the canvas in front of herself, placing it on a nearby easel. It depicts a crystal environment, with twisting paths. There are many reflections of Heather in the image, projected on the walls, some of them perfect reflections, others positioned somehow more maliciously, but in all the space the image shows, there is no other person there, puddles of water and little else. There are not even the threads of colour that are common in Heather's paintings. She offers Shane a nod and then sits back on her own stool.

Quenton clears his throat, leaning away from Shane, now, lifting a hand to rub at his nape guiltily. "I didn't mean…." At Heather's arrival, though, he falls short, and just glances over towards the canvas, watching it now. He doesn't comment, but he does stand up and move over to view it more carefully.

"Yeah," Shane says as Heather places the painting to be viewed. "…That's pretty much it… 'N Heather says her dad'd put her there like a punishment." Nodding to the other girl, she subsides, scraping a hand through fire-engine red hair. "Case y'didn't know, Q… it's Heather's parents that did all that. Blew up chunks of the school usin' us, burned down bits o' New York, probably killed a bunch of people. And most of the time? That right there… that's all I knew."

"Eventually, in that place, it's like you feel you want to be killed, just for the value of the socialization… It's lonely and frustrating, because it's you," says Heather, peering at it and then turning lightly on her stool. "It needed to be painted."

Quenton glances between Heather and Shane silently, before glancing over towards the canvas. "I'm sorry that happened to you," he says quietly, though he stares at the painting, a hand moving towards it, almost as if to touch it, but then recoils, looking over his shoulder at the two girls. Towards Heather, he mutters, perhaps a bit awkwardly, again, "I'm sorry."

Shane lifts a shoulder, shaking her head. "Heather had it lots worse'n I did," she murmurs. "I'll deal. Just… suck at talkin', so, figured maybe it'd be better just t'show you, y'know?"

Heather nods her head once when Quenton says he's sorry, averting her gaze for a couple of moments. "It was my reality. I'm used to it, and it was what it was. I'm only sorry I could not prevent others from being dragged into their game."

"Right," Quenton replies. "So… are your parents still around?" he then asks, though he's hesitant to do so. An odd question to ask, perhaps. His eyes stray towards Shane, and then avert guiltily again.

"Dunno what happened to'm, after it was all over," Shane offers, leaning over and resting her elbows on her knees. "Prolly sent up to some supermax jail for powered types. Least I got to punch your mom in the face," she says to Heather, attempting to crack something like a small smile. "Felt even better when I found out who I was punchin'.

Heather nods at Shane and says, "It must have been satisfying. When the illusions broke, that was the best part." She sighs, which sounds like a little squeak, and shakes her head, "As for my parents, they are contained, as far as I know in the same facility they tricked and dodged their way out of. I would have been happy to plunge my hand into their chests and remove their hearts, it would be a weight off my shoulders that I have borne for a long time."

Quenton actually looks a little disappointed at the news, but he averts his gaze to hide that. He just sort of stands awkwardly in front of the picture. "Well. Sorry I wasn't there to help," he mumbles, a little half-heartedly. The heart plunging comment makes him lift a hand, to stare at, before glancing between the two girls.

Shane shrugs. "Lots of people weren't. Not like it was all on you. 'Sides… From what I hear, happens all the time anyway. Maybe next time 'round, I guess."

Heather shrugs a shoulder and says, "My parents were just an unfortunate happening. Indeed, such things do happen, and I do my best to fight these unfortunate things. Unfortunately, my parents know me well enough that it's hard to fight them."

Quenton shifts slightly. "I wouldn't want it to happen to you guys again." But he does look at the painting, perhaps a little longingly, hands shoving into his pockets, shifting a little on his feet.

"Prob'ly will, though," Shane says, voice going neutral. "'S just how it works. World sucks like that, is all."

"That they exist makes it certain that I will see them again," says Heather, shrugging with a seeming indifference, "They are my parents. They have an interest in me. I was raised for their purposes. In any case, more people will be prepared should it happen again. More defenses will be made."

Quenton glances over toward Shane, wetting his lips briefly, before just nodding, while he moves over to a desk by the sewing machine and just plops limply on it, letting his weight do all the work instead of his strength.

Shane falls silent for a bit, then gathers up the cloth again, attempting to fold it up but only partially succeeding; what's left is a slightly organized wad. "….Oughta put this away I guess," she murmurs. "See you tomorrow I guess." Standing there, as though waiting for some sort of response, she turns away and heads for the door, apparently preferring to flee rather than stand fast.

Heather picks up her small canvas and tucks it back under her arm. "I will be taking this back to my room, I think. I hope seeing it was helpful…" She nods once to both Quenton and Shane, before zipping out the door without another word.

Quenton seems ready to say something to one of the two ladies, but mutters under his breath and just sees them off, rising to his feet and smashing his fist into his temple in an air rippling blow once more. "You're fuckin' stupid, Q," he grunts, before his hand finds his pocket once more and he spares one last glance at the painting by the window, the one not depicting Crystalworld. And then he heads towards the door.

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