2014-03-02 The Tragedy of Susie Jenkins and Other Things
Players: Choir and Tech Star
GMed by Choir
Title: The Tragedy of Susie Jenkins and Other Things

It is Sunday afternoon and a few of the students who are on campus are leaving the dining hall. Irina Calyton uses this time to decide to go eat. As she walks past some of the prettier students, they look her over and begin whispering to each other and laugh and they leave. Irina shakes her head disapprovingly, but keep her head high. She will not suffer idiots. As she spots a table, she sits down and looks over the Sunday menu for lunch. Dressed for the wintry cold, she removes her black trenchcoat, revealing her school uniform and as usual, what stands out are the three mouths along her neck.

Sunday afternoon. All projects done, extra credit work finished, caught up on study and too early to hit the books again. For Sam Sunday afternoons can be tricky, a chance for boredom and homesickness to creep in even after more than a year at the Mansion. With no great expectations, he heads for the dining hall, sidestepping the crowd of older students that he's always at pains to avoid. They've got nothing in common, and made it clear enough that they won't have him hanging around their table.

Luckily there's respite, in the form of Irina, and Sam wastes no time in joining her in staring at the menu. He already knows what he wants, but it's a way of stealing time that might otherwise have to be spent doing something else. "Hiya. Mind if I join you?"

Popping her head up, Irina blinks a moment before she realizes it is Sam. “Oh, sure.” She and all her mouths smile. “I did not think any of the students would eat so late in the afternoon.” As the clique of mean girls walks past outside the window, “I was hoping to avoid some actually.” She kicks out the seat for Sam to join her. “But you I do not mind.” She smiles as she puts down the menu knowing what she wants. “How’s it hanging?”

Samuel swings his leg over the back of the chair and sits down. It's a bit of a stretch, but he's like that when he comes back from the gym, brimming with energy rather than tired. "Same. But I know when they're around, they always come in at the same time." It doesn't take long after he sits before a vanilla and strawberry ice cream float is brought to the table, the young mutant wasting no time in unwrapping the spoon from the napkin. "I ordered before I came in, hope you don't mind?"

Smiling, “Don’t mind. In fact…” She gestures for the worker to come over. She orders a tuna sandwich, iced coffee, and for dessert the same as Sam. The worker nods and goes to prepare it. Irina then looks over to Sam, “So how’re you liking the school? I wasn’t here when I was your age, so I would think it’s gotta be different.”

For his age Sam is not a messy eater, nor a voracious devourer of ice cream. Either he's acting more mature than he is because of the company he's in, or this is more of a habit and ritual rather than an indulgence of a sweet tooth. "The school's okay. I like a lot of the people here. Not everyone…" and a glance is giving out the windows to a gaggle of older students chatting mindlessly to one another "… but there's good people here. And my room's pretty big too, so that's okay." A spoonful of strawberry ice cream finally makes it into his mouth. "Mhhm… annIhafmahohnlahb."

Smirking at his reaction to this ice cream, Irina is delighted when her food is brought to her. “Thank you.” She says to the worker. She begins on her tuna sandwich, taking a bite and showing she enjoys it. “Cool. I still need to figure out what to do with my room. It’s big, but I have no directions up. I’m not really into any of the pop stars or actors or anything that I would want to put up some posters.” She shrugs. As she sips her iced coffee, “Maybe I can put up some pics of the X-Men or some other real heroes.”

Samuel thinks about it for a moment. "Well… there's lots of heroes around the city. You could take pictures of them, or ask them for promotional stuff." That gets another thought, the spoon halfway to the float again. "Y'know, I wonder why heroes always do merchandising. Maybe I should get some pins made myself."

Shaking her head in agreement, “You know…you are right. Other than newspaper clipping and some pics on the internet…there is not much for marketing. I bet the world would love the X-Men if they were marketed the right way.” A thought crosses her mind, “I should so make some puppets of them.” Irina smirks. Throwing her voice with her powers, it suddenly sounds as if Wolverine is standing behind Sam, “Sup, Bub!” She giggles as she finishes sipping the iced coffee.

The voice has a sudden and immediate effect on Sam. The spoon clatters into the plate holding the float, and the boy mutant stands up almost instantly. "Professor Logan, I'm sorry, I thought Krav was… tomorrow…?" As he turns, the Sam's voice trails off, and after one slow blink he sits down again, picking up the spoon and pointing it at Irina. "Now /that/ was impressive."

“Thank you.” Irina laughs at the instant reaction. “I may not be able to shoot lasers from my eyes or control the weather. My powers do make a great party trick…and are perfect for pranking.” She munches on her sandwich. “So, Sam, remind me again what is it that you do. Mine is a bit more obvious than most.” She points to the extra mouths.

Samuel helps himself to another spoonful before answering the question. Before he speaks, Irina's phone emits that idiosyncratic 'pwarp' that indicates an incoming chat message. "Don't do the entire laser eyes thing either, and I s'pose I'm lucky that I'm not really obvious as a mutant." Except for those who had seen the footage of the first confirmed mutant sightings in New York… "Doctor McCoy says I'm an urban mutant, some form of weird side strain of evolution that's weird even for mutants. Lucky me, huh?" And the message on the phone?

From: GuessWho

Msg: But at least I can do this :) :) :)

As Samuel speaks to her, Irina checks her Iphone and blinks a moment and looks at Sam, staring and smiling. “Oh, so you are like a technopath…oh that is so cool. We should totally team up to prank some of those…” She looks out the window, “…our peers and fellow students.” She grins as her sandwich is done and she is about to take part of the ice-cream. “Urban mutant? I have no idea what that means, but hey, if people cannot tell good for you. I was lucky that where I came from mutants were accepted…it’s not really till I got here among our own kind where some people have been…mean…but I guess it is more of a teen thing than a mutant thing.”

Samuel shrugs. "You find mean people everywhere. I mean, my parents knew I was different, they didn't care. My friends didn't care either, and most of the people here are really nice. But I guess not everyone had it as easy as me." If you can call being on the SHIELD watchlist and a high priority target for the Sentinels 'easy', of course. "I tried pranking a few a couple of months ago, but it's no fun. It gets boring after a while."

"Fair enough…I suppose. Pranks can get boring…unless you find new and innovative ways to do them." Irina shrugs a bit, "As long as they are not mean pranks…but yeah I do not want to end up on Wolverines detention class…I do not even want to imagine what he makes the students do." Shuddering at that thought, she changes the conversation, "Good thing you are still in touch with your parents. I heard some of the students were disowned or when their powers first activated, their parents were killed…like poor Susie."

"Self defense." Sam answers almost immediately. "Until you're too tired to make any more trouble. It works, most of the time. Sometimes he just sits there and glares… that's worse." It seems he's no stranger to detention, which might be odd considering his general demeanor. "Who's Susie?"

“Oh well, still I’ll avoid Professor Logan’s glares at all costs.” Irina smiles and then sighs, “Yeah, Susie Jensen. The new student. You would think her powers are harmless. She can change the colors of things. Rumor has it that when her powers first activated, she had no control. She ended up changing the color of the traffic light and her parents drove into oncoming traffic. Accident killed them and poor Susie feels very guilty about it.”

Samuel goes very quiet. There's a sudden odd, almost guilty look about him, and then he's back to eating ice cream. It takes him almost a minute to give a meaningful response. "Accidents happen."

“It seems tragedy follows her wherever she goes. One time a pretty girl was bothering her, so she unexpectedly changes the girl’s hair color. The pretty got all depressed and ended up killing herself.” Irina sighs again, “Poor Susie. Afraid her color changing powers will kill people now.”
"That's silly." Sam finally becomes more talkative again. "There's no such thing as a power that kills people, even for mutants that shoot lasers out of their eyes. It doesn't matter what it is you do, or happens by accident… what matters is what you wanted to do. If you didn't mean to hurt anyone, then it's an accident, and if you meant to hurt someone then you're a horrible person no matter what , what…" and the spoon clatters into the plate again, the boy suddenly very agitate. ". . 'greater good' or other nonsense you wanna call it. Hurting people is wrong. It's always been wrong and it'll always be wrong, and anyone who says anything else is lying or up to no good."

Blinking in surprise by his response, “I agree with you, Sam. But unfortunately, the who have died or suffered from accidents would see different. I agree that Susie is no killer. But society only looks at the outcome…not the intention.” Irina hmmmns as she starts in on her ice-cream. “Did something like what happen to Susie happen to you?”

"Yes." Sam admits, staring at the slowly melting ice cream rather than eating another bite. "And I don't want to talk about it. It's just that… if it wasn't for me, some of the mutants here wouldn't have had to hide. And then there was this other mutant, really powerful, who tried to tell me that it was okay to hate humans because of what they thought of us, that we were better than them. He sounded just like those people in the park who say it's okay to hate mutants, because humans are better than us… How are we… I mean, how is this s'posed to end? Why are they training us?"

Listening intently to everything Sam has said, Irina takes a moment before responding. She stops eating her ice cream and pushes it aside, “Well, that powerful mutant sounds a lot like Magneto. But either way his views are wrong and he is no better than the people who want to hurt us… Ultimately what you said before is true, if your intentions were never to hurt anyone then it was an accident…no matter how tragic. We are here to learn how to avoid accidents. To use our powers for the greater good, if we choose to. But always to have enough control so as not to harm anyone.” Irina offers a half-smile, “As for the specifics of your tragedy…well…I know we don’t know each other that well, but if you ever need to talk…”

Samuel picks up his spoon again, nodding at what Irina is saying, but a certain gloom has settled over him. Odd, very odd… he usually the most cheerful mutant in the entire school, a permanent fixture either doing the mail calls, running laps in the gym or playing in the back yard. He's never down in the dumps. "D'you think that, maybe… just maybe… there are some mutant powers that are too dangerous to have, even if you control them?"

“Well, possibly. I haven’t encountered them yet. I mean look at Susie. Who knew something like changing color to lead to so much death? I can’t imagine what powers would be too dangerous as they cannot be controlled? Reality warping, maybe?” Irina ponders out loud.

Samuel drums his fingers on the table for a moment. "I'm not allowed anywhere near Wall Street, did you know that? Not that it'd make a lot of difference, because that's not where their servers are, but y'know… I could be completely in control of what I can do, and then someone puts a gun to my head and tells me to do something… or threatens to kill my parents or something if I don't do whatever… if you know what I mean?"

“Well that sucks, but it is a precaution. Sometimes outside forces like someone with a gun can cause our actions to lead to tragedy.” Irina notes the time and sighs, “I have to go meet a friend, but…” Irina stands up and offers the young mutant a hug, “If you need to talk anytime, Sam. You know how to reach me.” She holds out her phone and smiles, “You can finish my ice-cream too. It was great having lunch together. Thanks.” She saunters out of the Dining Hall.

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