1963-07-23 - Have You Seen This Man?
Summary: Amora goes to school, and Rogue schools her on feminism.
Related: None
Theme Song: We Gotta Get Outta This Place - The Animals
rogue amora 


Amora reclined on a bench on the university's quad, a stack books more of a prop than anything, sat on the bench beneath her knees. Her form was such that she fit in, a subtle shifting of her huan guise to appear younger, lithe in frame and more carefree in her expression. Her body was thrown backward, her legs taking up the armrest of the opposite side of the bench while her head was propped up by a sweater of some kind. Her form was such that her measure of beauty was drawn back, enough to pass unnoted among the mortals that surrounded her. Though, if they looked twice it was hardly an imperfect set of features to look upon.

Green eyes counted the passing mortals with idle ease, and she sighed, drumming her fingers against the flat of her stomach. Green pants coiled lazily up her leg from her position, and she didn't seem to care overly about exposing more of her legs as a result.

The Asgardian had attempted, briefly to figure out what drew the Trickster to such an institution and had failed to find anything remarkable or of note in the rather dismal setting. Mortals every where. Ignorant mortals at that.

Meanwhile all around her others went about their day, some rushing to classes, others spreading out on the grassy lawn to bask in the sun's cheery warmth, some played music and others danced. It was a setting that encouraged the mind and body to linger, and as such, Amora's languid stretch over the bench was hardly anything of note.

*

In the heat of July, even Columbia bows to the drowsy weight enforced by the turn of the seasons. The city bubbles under a pressure cooker lid, the mercury rising to a peak of 92'F, and every cop or nurse could tell a reporter how heated temperatures leads to outbreaks of violence and heart attacks. Something about the scorching temperatures and oppressive skies weigh down on the human spirit. Add dozens of injuries from a riot in Midtown to a litany of other petty crimes and inexplicable activities, and the place is a hotbed of trouble. Students sheltering under trees and pretending to thumb through the academic calendar, undergrad newspaper, or the latest novel aren't finding much relief.

Ignorant mortals by Asgardian standards feast on knowledge, gorging themselves on the days' and weeks' events. After one hundred days of a newspaper strike, they're eager to devour all the printers spit out. They hunger for knowledge about their brothers and classmates deployed in South Vietnam, worried about the Viet Cong advances. Others watch the alarming developments in European trade, the endless bickering between West and East Germany. Sit ins convulse the south, and Reverend King speaks of a gentle path of unity. This is the generation to contemplate, to wonder, to dare. Or lie on benches with sweaters tucked against their napes, sighing heavily about the ordeals of Midgard.

Out from a low building full of classrooms and the odd study area, a redheaded young woman emerges with her bookbag swaying against her hip and a dahlia in her hair like a second, small sun. She holds a particularly diffused air to her, in part because of the round sunglasses perched on her nose. Familiarity might draw her in outline with a basket of flowers and a Communist soldier tearing through a mutant to carve a path for her escape. Whatever does Asgard see in Columbia?

What does Columbia see in her? Whatever that would be, she fans herself with her white-gloved hand and gives a parting smile to another person headed in, though not calling after them. Her thoughts aren't there, and whatever paper she holds could be the key to a destination or a journey.

*
Amora draped an arm over her forehead, and bobbed her foot lightly in an idle manner as she shifted on the bench. It was warm, it was apex of summer, but she still managed to look unruffled by it. So she continued to lazily lay there, waiting for the Trickster who had yet to show. Her gaze flickering up at the door of a nearby building found another mortal and she dismissively turned her glance else where.

A beat passed and her gaze was swinging back, a memory tickling at her mind with a teasing notion that for some reason the girl looked familiar. So it was that Amora shifted onto her side, propping her chin up with a hand to find a better angle in which to view the young mortal.

The memory of flowers, of riots and mayhem and chaos echoed in her mind and she shifted to sit up with the thought. Her gaze focused, narrowed in thought before she dragged her gaze away. For the pre-text of looking uninterested she grabbed a random book at her side and settled it upon her folded knees, still slouching against the bench.

Even then her gaze was not upon the text or the subject within the book, but upon what curious mortal had happened to catch her attention at the moment.

*

Moisture on the atmosphere leaves few victims free of its traces, sending beads of sweat trickling down the arch of the spine and within polyester-bound thighs. Bottles bead condensation same as the university windows overlooking the quad. Relief comes only in the puddles of shade cast beneath the buildings themselves or the occasional deciduous trees planted on the perimeter, the broad quartered lawns open to the baking sky. At least six students dangle their legs into the fountain placed far across the colonnaded entrance to the main hall. Money and purpose endow the virtues of neoclassicism on a generation eager to mold its own shape.

This is why broad hats and oiled Chinese umbrellas ought to be de rigueur. Too bad for those without. A flip of the page follows, and she skims the back of the typed sheet for a penciled in note of some kind or another. The corner of Scarlett's mouth lifts upwards, sketching out a hint of a smile anchored against the typical casual mask worn in public. Nothing odd to see here, another Modern Girl sashaying her way through the world with an ounce of cosmopolitan skill. The city holds no fears for one prone to diving deep into its restless depths, the uncharted creative brilliance embodied in the Village.

An eastward path cuts away from the heart of Columbia towards the nest of streets. Having little to stop her other than checking, presumably, the path she means to take, Scarlett isn't bound to remain on the campus for long. Hard indeed to measure where her luminous green eyes focus behind the sunglasses, though the varied faces and shapes taken in pale beside whatever purpose guides her. They passe over Amora in her current form, finding little parallel in memory with those softened lines, though linger but a moment too long.

The dahlia twitches on her braid, circling orbits around a minute world. Gravity tugs. Her step hitches, but then she moves on.

*

Whatever vague interest Amora holds for the young woman that had been at the riot seems to fade. The warrior that had been at her side was no where to be found, and truly, he had been the one to catch the immortal's eye. A bored expression passes over her features, and she releases a heavy sigh. Not unlike a bored Queen of old finding the players all dull and drab, she rearranges herself on the bench and set the book aside.

Then there is always the chance that the mortal might know of the Trickster, or more over of Professor King's schedule. Such educators needs must be reachable by students, should they not? More over, when was Amora ever the type to sit and wallow in the lack of entertainment? She had ways of finding such means on her own.

So it was that the young appearing woman gathered up her books and made her way after the red-headed mortal with more energy than perhaps most had on such a boiling day. Her lips pulled wide in a smile, and she waved as she if knew the girl as she made her way over.

"Hey! You're in Professor King's class, right?" Her voice was higher pitched than normal, and had a tone that sounded as if she was perpetually on the edge of mirth.

*

A glimmer of restraint settles upon her, the long stride devouring the ground with a decided carefree poise held in check. Summons of a wave raises her eyebrows a fraction, that ever so human response of pausing to mentally inquire of oneself whether she is the intended target. Gravity lingers upon her brow, settled lightly across slender shoulders caught beneath a swinging, graceful dress skimming along her knees in a pop-art trapeze.

"Hello," Scarlett replies, adopting that same sunny tone chased by the sophisticated vocabulary that speaks at some level to sufficient education and a particular socioeconomic class. One that isn't a poor orphan raised from poverty as a token to show off at philanthropy dinners about doing good for the community. "Alas not. You might have mistaken me for someone else?"

The light spill of her scarlet locks sway around her face, flaming tendrils shaped into an oval halo by sheer happenstance. Her hand slips up to the wide strap, tugging her bookbag to sit comfortably upon her hip instead of bouncing off her flank. Its weight she accepts, tolerant as one can be. "Apologies, I'm sorry I could not be more help."

*

Amora makes a show of deflating, of looking utterly defeated when she finally catches up, breathless to be told that her 'guess' was incorrect. Her amusement, her game would go no further. So she sagged, hugging her books to her chest as she pouted. "Oh man, sorry! You look like the girl that sits up front. I'm so sorry." She gushed, pushing a strand of fly away blond behind an ear. A sheepish look crossing her features and even a modest blush colored her cheeks, or maybe it was just from being in the heat. Who could say?

An exaggerated glanced went around them and back. "I've been having trouble following /anything/ he teaches, and he's so stern! Even if the other girls think he's a major hunk. I'm afraid to ask for extra help." She bit her lower lip, dragging it between white teeth.

"You wouldn't happen to know anyone that's had his class before would you?" She blinked and flutters wide green eyes up at the red-head.

*

Scarlett teeters on her toes, the cobblestones tread by a hundred luminaries across the Supreme Court and apparati of government from federal to city levels dusted over by their mingled shadows at crosspurposes. The heat bears down, brought by an inglorious sun. She is dressed in the manner of a raconteur by conservative standards. The glimmering bangles chime on her left wrist, cast in simple, beaten tin and painted gaily in a succession of jade and gold and copper, every shade mingled together. Bringing fingers to her temple sends a fresh melody into the air, itself a sonic counterpart to the shades of neroli lifting off her skin in a fresh, subtle tone. Seductions have been known to mankind since its inception, even those intended for beautification and cosmetics.

"What subject? Isn't it one of the humanities?" The young woman pauses, looking over the book clutched to the blonde's chest, seeking some deliverance from ignorance. Title, author, an image might give direction. "The library has dedicated librarians for the different fields, so they might be able to provide some direction. Teaching assistants for each department ought to point you towards any study groups, else they're not very useful after all. Though on the assistant front, they can be wickedly distracting in their own right if you get a good one." A smile breaks through the polite veneer, a hint of sunlight after a hazy morning.

"The registrar must have a hundred students a semester trying to pull out of a course that looked appealing and proved to be a terrible match. At least have no shame about that, you wouldn't be the first nor the last."

*

Another smile, as brilliant as the sun over head blossomed over Amora's features as she rocked back in her heels and shifted her grip on the books in her arms. One title hinted at history, another Rome, but beyond that the titles were hidden behind the stack other other bound tomes. "Archaeology. I took it as a science 'cause my friend was gonna take it, but I'm a real ditz half the time, so when she dropped out I started to flunk it." A sheepish laugh escaped her as she shifted on her feet. She exhaled a gust of air, a great huff of a dramatic sigh.

"I looked at the teaching assistant.. but he's /so/ groady." She pouted, as if the hardships of life were all meant for her and her slim shoulders alone. She fanned herself with a hand, shifting her books to her hip.

"And here I am talking your ear off. I should let you get out of the sun. I'm Leena by the way, it was nice meeting you…?"

*

"A pleasure to meet you, Leena." The name hovers on her lips, and Scarlett adds almost offhanded, "Lady of Light. What a lovely name."

She trails her fingers down the paintbrush tail of her braid, twisting once for good measure and releasing the straightened locks from their teasing. A haphazard flick of her wrist casts back the weighted plait along her back, swaying in languid ripples until settled. "Scarlett." The name slips from the young woman's lips in a cascade of sibilance, given a mildly stronger southern inflection that wouldn't be amiss on the society doyennes of Savannah over their tea.

She continues softly, "I have not taken that course." Following a shake of her head, the uptick of the smile returns. "It sounds as though you would find something else better suited for a science credit. Not too late to find your calling. I think psychology counts, if not the rest. What's your passion if not this?"

*

Amora, or 'Leena' as it were shrugged with a slow roll of her shoulders and another beaming smile. "Scarlet? Like in 'Gone with the Wind'? I love that movie!" She seemed to bounce on her feet with some inner amusement, and her eyes twinkled with a hint of it, before it faded.

"Anyways, it's really nice to meet you Scarlet. I hope we have some class in the future together, wouldn't that be swell?" A laugh escaped her as she glanced around and lowered her voice in a conspiratorial manner.

"I plan to talk to my advisor about it. I was thinking about being a teacher or something, but I can't make up my mind. My mom says I should just find a husband and quit while I'm ahead."

*
The bohemian inclines her head a fraction, the unfurling of a petite smile reminiscent of a cat lifting her paw and revealing a treasured string. No doubt the connection made has not been the first or the last, and she murmurs dryly, "School, school, school. This class talk's spoiling all the fun at every club this summer. Ah get so tired Ah could just scream. Equations and measurements and this war and those people. Ah do declare that Ah'll never forgive anyone who makes life so very, very boring."

When she dips into that register, a horrifying construct of Vivien Leigh and spoiled socialite blends together in dramatic fashion. Her hands clasp together and Scarlett huffs a sigh, blowing out through parted lips. "_Men_. Why do we need to get married to be any value? Throw out such dreadfully dated notions."

Her voice drops from the artificially breathy register and settles back into its normal dulcet range, far less saccharine. "Truly, I'd say do what makes you happy and discover what you are good at by trial and error if you must. Columbia offers much, but maybe you'd be happier trying something utterly different. The sky is the limit, Miss Leena. Maybe you're meant to be racing cars or starting the most popular boutique in New York City."

To be continued..

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