"Kidnapping for a good cause? What the hell sort of sense is that?!" Kenna repeated before her voice rose. This was getting beyond irritating, of course, there was that presence. Somehow that always seemed to go under her skin, causing more irritation than before. There was a name to go with it. She was equally annoyed with him, as well.
So much choas, she was genuinely confused about what was going on. The ground was shaking, tensions were rising. It was levels she hadn't experienced before. Kenna only felt the sudden, searing pain in her head. Reading auras usually affected her to a degree but never this much.
Slowly stepping out of the car, she leaned against the car she held her head before looking to Tristan. "What's going on...lady?" She asked genuinely puzzled and in pain. He seemed to be having issues tonight, if she could...no...she wouldn't, couldn't.
[b "It's not kidnapping!"] Tristan defended himself. [b "It's...."] He had nothing. [b "Alright, it's a little like a kidnapping, but it's a kidnapping for a good cause!"]
He noticed her change in demeanor, and his brow furrowed. [b "You okay?"] he gave her shoulder a mild shake.
Her answer made his heart stutter. Tristan caught Storm's eye in the rearview mirror and he groaned. [b "That would be the guy,"] he confirmed.
The tires screeched against the asphalt as the SUV whipped around a corner. It almost seemed like they were in the clear. Then the car came to a complete stop, throwing him forward into the seat in front of him. [b "What the hell was that? Why'd you stop?"] he struggled to right himself, glaring at his mentor.
[i "It's not me,"] Storm hissed in response, pressing the gas pedal to the floor, only for the tires to spin without traction.
[b "Fuck!"] he shoved himself back into the backseat to look out the back window.
[i "Come on, you piece of shit!"] Storm slapped at the wheel.
The door beside Tristan was torn from the car. He was next, feeling his belt buckle tug him until he was pulled from the vehicle and tossed aside. Ororo put the car in park and jumped out after him, urging him to calm down as the ground began to shake under them.
The Brotherhood, that's what she had been told by one of the lackees. It was almost the same speech, only more non mutant hate speech, while this one had been talking about certain death. It seemed unfathomable that there would be someone filled with that much zealous, that was a lot of hard work.
"Wouldn't he have found me by now? It's not as if I have an alias...completely...and don't leave a trail," Kenna asked dubiously. This man was getting on her nerves more and more, she only wanted to go to the crappy room, find some whiskey and watch a show. There had been something in the last two days...
It was too late to mention something because he grabbed her and dragged her to the car. [i They're kidnapping me!] she thought indignantly when in the car. Feeling the car moving she moved her wrist back giving a malicious glare to him. "What the hell do you think you're doing? This is kidnapping! Jesus...It's not as if..."
She paused, recounting a feeling that she had for the last two days ago of an aura that had been strong, full of malice, but something else. "I think this Magneto guy is already in area. Strong, malice, but conviction?"
Tristan stared at her, unable to process that she'd just given a clear rejection to their offer. Realistically, he had anticipated that she was going to say no. She'd said no to everyone so far. He was far less remarkable than anyone else Charles had sent.
Still, his brain was not computing her answer.
[b "I don't think you understand the severity of what's going to happen. Let me simplify it. We leave you alone, Magneto finds you, you give him attitude, then he kills you. Or, you come with us, meet the professor, and have some semblance of safety,"] he grit his teeth.
Storm stuck her head across the passenger seat to see them out the window. [i "I said let's move!"] she revved the engine.
Tristan bounced on his heels, hearing the siren in the back. [b "Look, I'm really sorry about this,"] he apologized before grabbing her arm and hauling her into the backseat of the SUV with him. [b "Go!"] he yelled at Ororo, who hit the locks on the door and spun the tires as she peeled them away from the curb.
It was often said that tenacity was a good thing and these X-Men sure had that. It wasn't as if she hadn't seen the incidents. The Missile Crisis, and many other reports, each more exaggerated than the last. Active fear mongering to the those who were not mutants. It was a strange but not that interesting.
Watching him shake, hell, she could feel him tremor from within. What would it take to have him blow up? Breath on him wrong and there was a sudden implosion. The images was fairly amusing to think about. He wasn't a terrible looking guy, the unsteadiness just was making it less focused.
Her thoughts happened during the whole time he was talking, honestly, she missed half of the words. "Uh huh, good guys helping everyone...bad guy want to destroy everyone and will kill you...got it. Well, that was very inspired but I think I'm going to say no again. Thanks though good luck saving the world," Kenna gave a bored look. "I really don't want the cops to be here. I'm going to go now. Good luck with it all."
Once outside, he was able to take a calming breath and gather his thoughts. [b "Okay, so you know who we are,"] he started and then his mind went blank.
She'd turned them down multiple times already. Hell, she'd turned down Scott! How was he going to convince her of anything if he can't even control himself? [i Focus!] he scolded himself.
[b "We're not some hive-mind or cult, if that's what you've taken from all of this,"] his hands gestured wildly as he spoke. [b "The professor just wants to help."]
He dug in his front pocket and pulled out his phone. [b "This guy?"] he practically shoved the screen in her face to flash a slightly grainy photo of Magneto. [b "He's bad news. And he wants you for his army. He's hell-bent on waging some kind of war on non-mutants, and you'd be the perfect addition to his militia."]
Tristan's hand flew to tap his chest. [b "We're the good guys, or however you want to see us. Charles Xavier takes people like us and helps them learn to control and master their mutation. Kids, teenagers, everyone. He wants to protect you. I'm pretty sure if you turn down Magneto, he will actually kill you."]
It was hands down the worst recruitment pitch to come out of the Xavier Institute. His hair was a mess, his eyes were wild, and he was positive that he looked like a crazy man on a rambling rant. [b "You don't know me, and I don't know you, but I need you to trust me. What do you say?"]
The door burst open and Storm came flying out, [i "Unless we all want to be arrested, we need to go now,"] she yelled, throwing open the door to their car.
While there were a great deal of skills the woman had, there was some lacking. Thinking ahead was not one of those skills. There were few as impulsive as she was in. Still seeing one of the lights fall close to one meat head, it did make her think. If someone died and then she disappeared, they'd probably look for her and all the work she had done would just go poof.
"Fine," Kenna glowered to the male, still moving her wrist. There was so much more she was sensing now and it was annoying. "Touch me after this and I will make you walk funny for a week, though."
Outside was clearer, she jerked away rolling her eyes. She went for her cigarettes, having almost given it all up, but this situation called for a cigarette. Everyone did at this time anyway.
"Go for it," she said dryly. Five minutes, and it wasn't as if she had to pay attention. It would be the same dribble that the guy with glasses gave her. He had a kind face so she hadn't been nearly as rude this guy was another story.
Feeling the residue of the touch slowly fade she let out a small breath. God, she hated being touched unless she initiated it. Blessing, her ass...
Tristan's grip slackened as she quickly and easily maneuvered out of his hold. Glancing back at the bikers gathering around Storm, he growled urgently. [b "That's great and all, but there's a serious problem that you're going to want to be aware of, so I suggest you rethink your choice!"]
Ororo remained calm, holding her hands out to keep the men at bay. [i "You boys really want to do this? It's only going to end well for one of us, and I promise you that it'll be me."]
One guy with a too-long goatee stepped up to lean down in her face. [i "And what exactly are you going to do about it, sweetheart?"]
Tristan heard the comment and grimaced. Storm had given them a fair chance to leave. [b "I wouldn't if I were you,"] he tried explaining before she'd already laid the man out on the ground and was lunging for another.
Torn between helping his mentor and keeping an eye on the target, he was growing flustered. The floor started to shake more severely, knocking several bottles and glasses shattering to the floor. Tristan braced his hands on the bar top and hoisted himself over until he was standing beside the girl. [b "Kenna, right? We really don't have time to discuss this. Stand by your anti-establishment belief all you want, but we're trying to save you from a deranged mutant who wants to wage war on humankind. You will be caught up in it whether you like it or not."]
The bar shuddered. [b "You don't have to trust me, just give me five minutes! She has them busy,"] he gestured to where Storm was breaking pool cues over heads. [b "Step outside with me and I'll give you the fastest pitch I can."]
Fuck. It wasn't just one, but two of someone from either the dark or light side. Kenna had only sensed the woman but not [i two] of them, and one was ruining the place that she was working. Eh, she didn't care about the place, she actually found herself disliking it more than than the others. Through the chaos she could tell the female was the senior and the guy was younger than she, and also a noobie.
Instead of feeling panic, Kenna leaned down to casually grab her bag. This would mean it was the last day. Incidents in New York was a terrible idea, this had been where everything had changed for her. Eyeing the male as he grabbed her wrist.
"Let me go," Kenna hissed, looking directly in his eyes. It was less likely to work, stronger wills and tempers made it difficult. Both parties needed more focus, still she thought she'd try. "I'll save you both the time and say that I don't care who you are and what side. Or whatever ideology there is. There isn't any part of that packaged deal I want to be a part of."
Instead of pulling her hand back, she twisted, knowing that it was better. It wasn't as if she was defenseless she had been practicing various self defense and kick boxing for several years. A girl had to protect herself when idiots didn't listen to her.
This was going to get them killed. Tristan couldn't help but notice that he was still being watched, and that Ororo had caught the eye of a few men. [b "We're going to be arrested,"] he muttered to himself, eyes flicking back to his mentor at the bar.
Ororo took a sip a her drink and gave an approving smack of her lips. [i "You seem on edge. You aren't nervous, are you?"] her head tilted slightly to the left. [i "Because you look like you're a little tense."]
[i Now was not the time for small talk,] he thought to himself, wondering why the hell she wasn't getting to the point. Out of his peripheral, he noticed a rather large tattooed man stumbling his way to his companion. [b "Shit."]
Tristan abandoned post to stop him in his tracks. [b "She's with me,"] he forced his voice to be more bold than he felt.
His beady little eyes flickered over the mutant's shoulder to Storm, who was now watching from the corner of her eye. [i "Boy like you ain't getting a woman like that. Move."]
Tristan braced his feet. [b "I'm sorry, but we came here together and we're leaving here together. We just wanted to say hello to a friend,"] he looked over his shoulder to Ororo and the girl.
He'd barely turned back to the man before a large meaty fist smashed into his face and sent him to his ass. [b "Holy shit,"] he grabbed at his now broken nose.
[i "Damn it,"] Storm hissed, dropping her glass to come to his aid. [i "Get away from him!"]
It was like a switch went off and Tristan lost control. The building began to shake as the ground beneath them shuddered. [i "Calm down. You'll bring the building down on us,"] Storm hauled him to his feet.
[b "I'm trying!"] he snapped at her, stumbling back into the bar. Noticing the girl was still there, he threw caution to the wind and grabbed her wrist. [b "You know why we're here. I can see it. Please come with us so we can explain!"] his voice was urgent as Storm tried to hold back the angered beast of a man.
Sometimes the sounds hurt her ears. Constant clinking of balls together, glasses hitting the table, ruckus laughter and giggling. Some days she was unable to control feeling people's waves, and controlling them. This wasn't a said date, she actually felt pretty damn good.
As a woman approached her, tall, slender with the most beautiful of hair color. The hair was a complete contrast yet flattering. Most of all the words and accent was civilized compared to the clientele here.
"Sure," Kenna answered slowly, keeping an eye on her while she handled the drink. Moving the drink over, Kenna kept her chocolate brown eyes on the woman. "Anything else I can get for you?"
Oh, no pitch, let this just be her paranoia, Kenna thought to herself. The woman didn't give off the vibe of a woman looking forward to a Friday night in a shit bar. When has those vibes ever failed her? Either way she needed to keep this simple.
He hung around the outskirts of the pool game, trying to subtly glance around for any sign of the girl he had seen in pictures they had found while researching her. There were numerous women drinking beers around the tables, but none that matched her. [i "What are you staring at, boy?"] one of the men growled, stepping in his eye-line to draw his gaze from the women.
[b "Nothing. I'm sorry,"] Tristan stammered out, immediately averting his eyes.
[i "Goddamn right nothing,"] the biker drawled out, waiting for the young man to turn and continue on his way before going back to the game at hand.
Tristan caught Ororo's eye from across the bar and her expression was clear: [i Don't cause trouble.] He moved past the billiards table and continued the search. A few of the bar patrons tried to get his attention by chucking peanuts at him. One struck just below his eye and his concentration fell. A glass of beer on the table vibrated and then shattered.
[i "What the fuck!"] the man who'd been drinking it shoved his seat back, picking bits of glass from his hand.
Tristan quickened his pace until he was shoulder to shoulder with Storm. [b "I can't be here. I have to go wait outside. Please let me wait outside,"] he begged her with the best puppy dog eyes he could manage.
[i "You're lucky I found the target,"] she muttered. [i "Go stand by the exit. Just wait there."]
He didn't waste any time doing as he was told.
Ororo made sure he was in place before approaching the bar. [i "Can I get a gin and tonic, please,"] she looked to the girl they'd been searching for.
It was odd to think that most wouldn't place her here. She was taller than most females, yet she didn't have many tattoes or use awful hair dye. Instead Kenna used her passive ability to shoo people away and sometimes personal gain.
OUt of the corner of her eye she saw the biker starting a fight with another man playing pool. She gave a small sound of satisfaction before settling on finishing the rest of the orders, making small chit chat as necessary.
So far, it was a run of the mill night before she would be getting the hell out of New York. The last she needed was to run into any of her Mary's former lovers...almost step dads...and just other people of the past. Which was why she didn't like to linger in a place too long.
Watching, the new person enter, she carefully scanned him able to read some of him. Readying herself she prepared some shots, knowing it was bound to happen sooner or later.
The hour he had spent meditating had gone to waste, as his adrenaline was pumping once more. He had tried to tell the professor that he wasn't the best man for this job, but Charles had done his best to instill some confidence. [i Storm will be there to guide you,] he had said. [i A quick recruitment.]
It wasn't supposed to take them half a month.
Tristan's fists clenched to stop the tremors, and focused on the road ahead. [b "How do we know she'll still be there?"] his voice wavered as he glanced at his mentor.
Ororo shrugged but didn't return his glance. [i "We don't. This could be like the other twelve times we've been close to her."]
It didn't exactly sound encouraging. [i Deep breaths. Focus on remaining calm. Do not cause an accident,] he thought to himself, resuming his breathing exercises. Ororo had probably broken at least ten traffic laws already. She was whipping through cars on the highway with a ferocity that he hadn't seen before. It was all he could do not to request that she slow down.
When the car pulled off outside of some dive bar, Tristan crooked an eyebrow at her. [b "This is the place?"]
Ororo double checked the coordinates on the GPS. [i "It has to be. This is what Hank and the Professor sent me."]
[i Great]. All he needed was to be in a crowded bar when he can barely keep himself under control. Being shoulder to shoulder with strangers was going to do great for his confidence. [b "Alright then,"] he breathed out but remained in his seat.
Storm walked around to his side of the car and pulled his door open. [i "You'll be fine. If it goes south, I promise I'll get you out of here safely."]
He nodded, still staring straight ahead. [i "Tristan, you're one of my favourite students, but if you make us lose her because you won't get out of the car, I will make a permanent rain cloud over you for the next month,"] her tone left no room for debate.
He was hyper-aware of his movements once they were inside. Hands curled tightly in his hoodie pockets, posture rigid. Avoiding any chance of bumping in to someone. [i "We'll split up, okay? I'll search by the bar, you check out the pool area and booths in the back."] She paused. [i "Just yell if you need me."]
She left him with a pat on his cheek and anxiety in his gut. [b "Don't blow this,"] he muttered to himself, moving in the direction of the bikers in the back.
In the background played some basic band from this time. Plenty of guitar that blended in before some rich voice came in talking about injustice. The woman knew this bar like the back of her hands just after a week. It was like any other bar on the East Coast. Filled with cigarette smoke, men in denim jeans and jackets with the same hair style. There was the same pick up lines, greasy smiles, and hopeless girls that literally fell into the same trap with each guy.
There were times she found a guy that was just interesting enough to bother with. It was a Friday night, roughly at eight at night, and already it was filling with the cigarette smoke and people.
[i It's almost time,] Kenna thought to herself, filling the pitcher of beer. It wasn't the thought it was time to settle down to a real apartment and job. It was the time to move on from New York. It wasn't a pleasant place for memories.
"I'll take a pitcher of beer...and your body..." came a slimy voice.
Kenna rolled her eyes, turning around, blonde braid tapping her shoulder. Catching the man's eyes she looked straight forward with focus. "Go over there and make an ass of yourself...go ahead...lose all your money on pool."
He appeared to fight it for a moment, before rising, going to the pool tables where he began boasting loudly. Good riddance. If there was one good thing about her ability was getting rid of men and ruining them if she actually put the energy behind it.
Would there be one of those Brotherhood or X-Men coming around again? There always was, even if she didn't really care about either of them or the government.
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