|Marvel: Age of Heroes|
"I really wish the tip was more specific," Kinetic, mutant Avenger, mutters as he flies over the Bronx slowly. There'd been a tip sent to the Avengers that A.I.M. agents had been spotted in the area and it was asked that they check it out. So Kinetic, with the day off from work, has been sent. In uniform, he's looking around for the tell-tale yellow uniform of the scientific villains.
A.I.M. agents are probably laughing right about now. One who -isn't- laughing, however, is the young woman who trudges down a Bronx avenue with her backpack clutched to her chest -- it's hard to pull into the proper place when she's wearing a bulky, padded hazmat suit. People get out of her way, pointing and whispering as she goes. At one point she passes somebody she knows from school -- a latina girl who's on her cell phone and starts tittering to a friend. The girl in the suit whirls, glares -- through the miniscule faceplate of the suit -- and says, "I can -hear- you, you know. Bitch." And then turns back and keeps trudging.
When he first spots that bulky yellow suit, Kinetic thinks he's spotted his target and begins following from above. Gotta follow the bee-keeper back to the hive after all. Of course the interaction with the girl on the cell phone and a bit off closer observation have the Avenger frowning. "Okay..." he mutters before moving to come in for a landing in front of the girl. "Excuse me, miss?"
The hazmat suit, it might be noted, is decorated with a variety of symbols indicating the hazard presented by the girl within. Radiation warning, biohazard, and so on, and so forth. Still clutching her backpack against her chest the girl raises her eyes from the sidewalk and regards the Avenger for half a moment. "Hell do you want?" she grunts, coming to a stop. One does not simply ignore an Avenger. Though one need not be polite. Not if one is Jenny.
Kinetic quirks a brow at the symbols, not sure if they're just decoration or not. Either way he strengthens that invisible bodyfield of his. "I was wondering if I could have a word with you? There's been some reports of something going on you might be able to help with," he says, getting the idea that there was something besides AIM going on in the area.
"Doubt that," mutters Jenny, but she doesn't stop. Her eyebrow rises behind the faceplate. "Say whatever, dude. Just get it over with. What, are they threatening to evict us again? I have NOTHING to do with Mrs. Rodriguez' freakin' pancreatic cancer, okay? Just leave me the hell alone."
"Wait...what?" Kinetic frowns. He gives a general 'nothing to see here' telepathic nudge to everyone in the area, getting rid of nosy people. "Have you ever heard of a group called Advanced Idea Mechanics?" he asks.
"Uh, duh?" says Jenny. "They only try to kill the president every couple years. I'm in a hazmat suit, not another decade, dude." She shifts from one foot to the other. "What, they doing something in the Bronx? What the hell would they want in the Bronx? All the science stuff is downtown. Everybody knows that." She pauses. "Or Jersey, I guess. But even those jerks wouldn't stoop that low."
Nodding, Kinetic glances up towards where the girl with the cellphone had been and sighs. "People give you a lot of trouble over being in that suit?" he asks, feeling a bit annoyed as he guessed what might have happened. "They like to build bases in the weirdest places. Science stuff or no."
"Oh, no, nothing like that," says Jenny, faking astonishment at the concept. "They're completely understanding and so very welcoming. And not at all terrified that I'll go nuts and start killing them like the rabid dog I am." She snorts, and it fogs up the interior of her faceplate. "Ah..." She mutters another curse and raises her hand to her face, pressing the plate against her nose and wiggling it to try to wipe away some of the fog.
Well, then I've got an idea about what's going on," Kinetic mutters. "I'm pretty sure someone called the Avengers saying you were the AIM agents we're supposed to be so concerned about," he sighs. The Avenger looks the girl over a few times then lets out a thoughtful noise. "You're a mutant?"
It takes a good deal of effort to clear the faceplate of fog, and even then Jenny's left with droplets of water all over the interior. "One of these days they'll think to put windshield wipers on the inside of these stupid things," she mutters. "Yeah, I'm a mutant. Also, the Bronx sucks, the Yankees rule and, like the Declaration of Independence, we hold these truths to be self-evident."
"Yankees rule? I know a big orange guy that'll have a nice long argument with ya about that," Kinetic jokes. He takes a breath then tilts his head to the side. "Well, ever wonder what going to a school where people weren't bigoted jerks might be like?" he asks. "I'm Kinetic by the way. What can I call you?"
"Clearly he's not from New York," replies Jenny. "Sure, I've wondered, but my parents won't let me home school. And they won't let me have that much privacy anyway." She regards Kinetic for a long moment, face framed by beads of water, and shrugs. "Jenny."
"Not quite sure where he's from but he's a Mets fan," Kinetic remarks. "Personally, I've never much followed sports other than a short time as a hockey fan," he says with a shrug. "Well, nice to meet you, Jenny. And how do you think your parents would react to you possibly being able to go to a school specifically for mutants like us?"
"Being a Mets fan does not rule out being a Yankees fan. Different leagues." Her brows furrow behind that tiny window. "They'd probably say 'Money doesn't grow on trees, Jenny, sorry, but you're doing fine at that school where everybody hates you, don't worry! Things will turn around soon.'" Her voice affects a lilting optimism that the girl herself clearly doesn't feel. "That, of course, is after I say, 'Yeah, so not into that whole concentration camp thing.'"
"Well, one...I'm relatively sure the school doesn't charge," Kinetic remarks. "And, also sure it;s not any kind of camp. You haven't heard of Xavier's?"
"Oh, so they educate us poor, helpless mutants out of the good of their angelic little hearts?" says Jenny dryly. "Yeah, there's so a scam in that." She heaves a sigh. "Look, dude, life sucks for mutants, and then if you're lucky you don't get lynched by a mob of normals every time somebody in the neighborhood gets cancer after smoking four packs a day for the last thirty-six years. Good on you, getting into the Avengers. Nice to know they're not immune to that whole 'token minority member' thing. How's the Falcon doing lately? And Living Lightning?"
"Actually, they educate us poor but decidedly non-helpless mutants and teach us control of our powers so we don't accidentally blast our math teachers into little bits," Kinetic replies. "And I'm not sure of the specifics of your mutation but the brains up there might be able to help ya out with the suit thing," he adds. The blond then sighs. "You're right, being an Avenger does help deflect some of the flak I'd get for being a mutant but I still get a decent share. As for Falcon, well you'd have to ask Cap. I don't think Falcon's ever been an Avenger though. No clue who Living Lightning is though."
Jenny is momentarily nonplussed, not because she is shocked by the supposed nature of Xavier's. More because she didn't expect the insult directed at the Avengers in general to go over the Avenger's head. "Whatever," she says at last. "Unless somebody's figured out a cure for this crap, I doubt they're gonna help much."
"Can't cure what's not a disease," Kinetic remarks automatically. "But I wouldn't doubt 'em before ya met 'em. They're some really smart and really helpful people up there. Seen 'em help a lot of mutants with power problems," he adds.
"Right," says Jenny. "Look, I so much as take off my gloves and everybody around here starts getting sick. I cry arsenic. I bleed cyanide. And that's not even counting the goddamn hard radiation. So sure, they can come check me out -- just let 'em know they better bring their own rad suits 'cause I've just got the one."
"Well damn. That's an interesting one. About the same level of danger as the guy who's a walking explosion and the girl that can kill people by touching them," Kinetic says, shrugging. "I'll ask 'em to come talk to you. See if they can convince you to switch to their school."
"Sure," says Jenny. "I'll be here, holding my breath." She makes a show of doing so, inhaling deeply and pooching out her cheeks behind the glass. Her eyes cross.
"I wouldn't advise holding your breath," Kinetic remarks dryly. "Seriously, I know being a mutant can suck royally but the world isn't all bad."
Jenny raises her eyebrows again. She continues to hold her breath for a moment, then releases the breath in a sigh -- and, once again, causes her faceplace to fog up. She raises a hand to her face again, muttering briefly, then says, "Look, I killed my dog. I put my boyfriend into a coma. My parents have been sick for months. My friends are too scared to even talk to me on the phone. I get accused of all kinds of shit that's not my fault, and I feel guilty enough about the stuff that is. Sorry if I'm all kinds of pissed off at the world, but it hasn't done a lot to make me happy lately. So, you know. Put up or let me get back to hating everybody."
Kinetic offers a sympathetic expression but stays quiet for a moment. "Just don't give up on everything, alright?" he says. "I'll talk to the people up at Xaviers and ask them to come see you," he adds. "Need a lift home," he offers after a moment.
Jenny waves at the building on the corner. "Almost there," she says. "Thanks." She glances over her shoulder and sighs. The latina is still there, and not so surreptitiously capturing the whole conversation on her cell phone. Her head shakes. "Right. This is why I stay inside."
Kinetic frowns at the latina girl. Normally he doesn't use his telepathy much but if it's going to keep someone's life from being a bit harder...the Avenger frowns a bit more and telepathically nudges the girl to erase her recording and continue on away from the area. "Alright then. I hope your day gets better."
"I appreciate the sentiment, at least," says Jenny. "Thanks." Okay, so maybe not everybody is completely horrible. Just 99.999999% of them. "You... uh... take care, Kinetic." She shrugs her backpack up against her chest again and starts toward her building.
"I'll try. No telling if like Dr. Doom will show up itching for a fight," the Avenger jokes, taking to the air.