1964-03-19 - Armed for Bear
Summary: What's the functional test to find dad?
Related: N/A
Theme Song: None
cable hope 

The rooftops of Stuvey-Town can be lower than most. They're nothing like the tenements clotting Harlem or the desolate concrete wasteland marking Hell's Kitchen, two spots supposedly too dangerous for a good white girl to be on her own. Of course, the people saying that nonsense are thoroughly dead in the future, so their recommendations fall generally upon deaf ears, meeting a narrowing of intensely Green eyes. Then, those same pearl clutching think of the children activists would be horrified to know what she's up to. Kneeling on the rooftop, lthe girl in her oversized coat of many pockets might appear to be mourning or praying.

Nothing is further from the truth. A rifle assembled before her rests on the ground, the tripod normally attached to such a thing — primitive as it is — propped on a cinder block. In hand is a small black device marked by the red emblem of a bird, wings outstretched, something normally attached by a chain around her neck. It's no pendant, though the tech packed into the device would essentially outmatch everything owned by the FBI, CIA, and NATO combined. It relies on another form of power altogether, and she cups it in her hands, glaring at the features. Motivations come and go, but this she keeps in a sacred trust. It wasn't so long ago she received it with the explicit instructions only to activate the comme link if she needed it.

Good a time as any.

Her thumb runs once around the outer shell and flips to the backside, pressing down into the organic curve that helps fit it to her ear. "Fine. Calling home. Dit, dit, dit." A frown mars her mouth, downturned. Two years on her own, then ripped askew in a time slide, and putting the pieces together. It's not her idea of fun. But the link works as a beacon as well as any.


It has been a rough few weeks for Cable.

Coming to terms with time has always been difficult for the Askani'son, but after feeling what felt like countless lifetimes in what amounts to a biological eyeblink has done wonders even for his well-established mental foundations. He has isolated himself within a meditation chamber, the walls arranged to block any and all possible interruptions. For weeks, beyond an hour of restless sleep a night, and the minimum of dietary input, he has purged, reordered, adjusted his mind. Redundancies are absorbed. Extremes are removed. Potentially useful tidbits of knowledge stored in the back. He's been done for awhile… but he's still somewhat manic. He rarely devotes himself fully to a task, a prodigy who masters things sufficient to achieve his needs, one of the reasons he is such a successful jack of all trades. The other is his obsession; he wants his memory to be /perfect/, and the timeframe to achieve that… is not very realistic.

And then, the Professor can be heard. "Nathan, I'm terribly sorry, but you strictly told me to interrupt you in this situation…"

"I strictly instructed you to not interrupt me in ANY situation."

"Yes, but this is my programming from before a few months ago, which you said had priority."

"…hrrmph. What?"

"Your GPS beacon requesting an audience has been activated. It can also be used for emergencies."

Immediately Cable is on his feet, cursing as he gestures, causing a wall to shift and passage to manifest. A deep whirr rumbles Graymalkin as storage shifts to appear at the end of a new hall, the door similarly sliding halfway open. It then gets stuck, but a burst of telekinesis and unhappy servos gets it out of the way. "If it's a damn emergency, why are you wasting so much time?!" In short order he's within his sleek black bodysuit, fairly redunant armor plating covering key areas. Hefting a plasma rifle from the rack, he ignores the AI's series of apologies.

"Bodyslide by one."

He forgot to ask who sent the signal.

There's a temporal flash behind Hope; the initial press of the button seemed to do nothing for enough time she might either think it didn't work or is being ignored. Cable, precisely as she physically remembers, appears about a foot above the roof and then thumps down heavily. This was decidedly less than subtle, however, but his first instinct is to survey the surroundings. Casting a net of psionic markers within a hundred meters, assessing for immediate threats, eye scanning for dangerous energy signatures. Instead, he sees Hope. And stiffens.



The triggering event leaves no obvious trace save the glimmering of the device, which she releases. The chain goes back around her head, settled so the comm link rests under the heavy coat. Immediately following its settling, she stoops to grab the rifle and carefully align the barrel down at an otherwise unimportant building facing the street, one shrouded partly in a plastic mask behind scaffolding and sheeting intended to keep the elements and public at bay. Perfect place for any amount of mayhem to take place, all the more with someone wielding suitably high firepower to manage. It's exactly the sort of situation she has trained nearly every day of her normal semi-adolescent life for, disregarding her strange temporal anomalies where she grew up overnight, then didn't.

Hope is not so focused on the roadside several stories down that she fails to have any sort of perimeter drawn up on that rooftop, a variety of subtle means to inform her if security gets breached. First, there's tripwires galore for every normal access approach, two bolts on the fire escape assure no one's great weight or ponderous presence would be taken without her knowing. Others are infinitely less telling: flypaper with the roofing tiles might not do much but buy her time, though it certainly announces someone's presence. Make do with what you've got, including jury rigging up an air compressor to go with one good shot, if need be.

Staking out the building, it doesn't quite take her as loudly by surprise as it should when the turquoise glimmer bends reality around her. She's lived too long in its presence not to understand what it is, but the myriad travelers capable of doing such things include someone who might emerge guns blazing. Come to think, possibly all of them. React.

React she does at completely unnatural speeds, spinning around and taking aim in the time it takes for a molecule to be displaced roughly a yard. Her fiery hair, lost under a knitted hat for the most part, is still swaying around her shoulders when she lowers the gun, stepping back several steps. All that a normal person might see? Girl lying on her stomach, aforementioned. Now girl standing and a distance back, all in the place of a Blink or two. That's new. But then, she's a patchwork of possibility, the hope of a future — so many futures — embodied in one very principled young woman raising her chin already.

"Hi." It beats being shot. "You look happy to see me."


Hope is deathly alert. Cable is deathly alert. The moment she flickers into action, Cable does as well. It is like a mirror; she is performing the same technique, only in the opposite direction. Evading the enemy while attempting to get them in your sights. Of course, both parties were taught to never fire until they are sure, so there's less danger in the dance than one might expect. He still follows through; it's good to know who would have won. Of course, Nathan flanked her. He got Hope's back. Chances are, this tally goes to him. The muzzle is lowered and his finger leaves the trigger, but nothing about his combat wariness changes.

"Caught me at an awkward time is all." Cable murmurs, looking in the direction that Hope has positioned herself. A more thorough probe follows; trying to get an idea of how many minds are in there, and roughly the positions relative to the building. It's somewhat phoned in, though. She's a perceptive person, and there's a strangeness here that is new after his sabbatical.

"So. You got a gun and a stakeout. What part of this did you need me for…?" It seems more teasing than anything. The ambiguity of what the device should have done is obvious to him, which is clear by the smirk on his face. "Did you hear a sound that scared you? Been awhile since that."


The girl moves breathtakingly fast when she wants to, though 'want' is relative in this case. Keeping the rifle in both hands, prepared to be used at the slightest provocation, hardly breathes 'Hi, I missed you' so well as some gestures. Normalcy has its place in the world, a dead one wreathed in white picket fences and cute houses, cookie cutter down the road, in the suburb of Stepford. Hope does not belong to that faraway time envisioned as part of Lala land, sold by developers to people who had faith in the government and their ability to advance without a nuclear deterrent raining winter on their heads. As far as things go, this counts as a happy joining of minds.

The casual measure of surroundings gives particularly insightful answers. Three people in the building on two floors, relatively close together. The rest probably constitutes storage, a closed business, or forced to leave by other means. Damage on the exterior to the low-lying place only a storey high may be responsible, given it's in absolutely terrible condition, what with all those plastic ghosts flapping around the exterior.

"Someone's hunting down mutants. Alien target, probably extradimensional. 'He' is using a task force of other mutants he probably programmed to serve his cause." She at least knows how to be blunt and to the point. No gestures follow through, her hands being occupied, and she manages to restrain a cold burn of anger lingering under the surface. "Not Bishop, nor Purifiers, or Apocalypse. This thing most definitely wasn't human; didn't have a genetic code I could recognise."

Now for the miserable part, the one she doesn't want to bother with. There are better things to ask. Like 'Where the hell were you' and 'Were you trying to shave again?' Her gaze holds with his, even though the height difference ought to be intimidating enough for her to drop her eyes first. She won't.

"I got myself back from his dimension after being teleported out. That was a week ago. I called you in because he's still doing it, and every target's been empowered. Thought you might care." A pause follows. "And maybe I want to put a few holes in him. I already wrote a name on his forehead with a sword."


There seems to be an intense scrutiny of Hope. Like he's trying to remember something. Why's she so old…?! She shouldn't be this old. He was throwing out all the ones where she became that much older than when they should have met. Crap. Crap! Obviously, he does an excellent job of hiding this private panic, and she wouldn't have even the slightest. She may know his nuances better than anyone, but he has been practicing since she was a toddler at keeping troubles from the forefront as well. "Probably Kree." Cable murmurs, scratching the side of his poorly maintained cheek. Definitely hasn't been keeping up with the hygiene. Which actually /is/ unlike him; although he takes no stock in personal appearance, the routine of waking up is important to him. The surest sign of a significant trouble. "Graymalkin got attacked recently. The important system is online, but it's still badly damaged. But from what I understand, this is normal. Aliens were going to take Earth's measure eventually, and in almost every iteration it fails. Little picture stuff. They'll handle it without intervention. Which means two things. I'm wrong, or you made it personal. Which is it?"


A girl of eighteen isn't quite the same as one of sixteen, nor one so small she nestled in the exo-armor carrier as easily as a doll, hidden by a ragged cloak. Hope's build is swallowed entirely beneath that coat, which might just conceal everything up to the Chrysler Building, though stripped of it, she'd be kinder on the eye. Her lips thin slightly at the question and then she gives a shake of her head. "Not green, yellow. Unimportant with a shape-shifter, but it relied on an apparatus to move around." The words are measured for all the skim of her gaze picks up on those details. Here is, after all, a man who might trust her to deal with the side problems of a techno-organic arm, but not brushing her own hair. Routine is familiar, but the absent routine's reason warrants a furious glare out of her. She does not ask the details; he'll tell her or she won't. That's how it goes. "Yes, Dad. It might fall. And we're here. Are you prepared to pull all the high value targets out? Because they haven't got the tech to fire themselves at the sky yet, let alone stopping the sky from burning and condemning four billion people to asphyxiate when some death birds from the Shi'ar try to wipe the place out. Or maybe it was the Alpha Centaurians who did it… or the orange ones wth the big ugly ships shaped like geometric blocks."

So yes, he might have hit a sore point there, though not necessarily the one he's aware of. Her breath is pulled in and out again, the tripod on the ground lifting with it. It hangs in the air, dropping back with a telltale rattle. "The aliens got here before me. This alien went for someone's friend. I'm someone's friend, so pulled in by proxy."


Cable's interested now. He was fairly sure that Hope wasn't doing low-level vigilante activity, but honestly that criticism was too harsh. You can't spend every day actively moving towards universal change. Between such, finding priority targets to remove and help as many as possible is a good hobby to have. "Yellow. And moved on an apparatus…?" For a moment, he almost initiates a telepathic connection. He was never good with words, and although his powers were minimal when he raised Hope, the older she got, the more they just… attuned. But he'd be sharing far more than he is willing to right now. "You're right, though. Of course. This is unusually early for attention to be drawn to Earth. I think only one country even has useful satellites right now. …some universes fail." Or it becomes drawn out. His temporal connection is too unstable. He can't just hop to a better reality. If this one decides a 30 year guerilla war with alien invaders is it's destiny, that would cause him a lot of trouble. "Tell me more about this yellow guy. I've been getting some really disturbing readings from Graymalkin lately." With the business part gone, he momentarily pauses. "Friend of a friend…? Look at you, learning how to socially network all on your own. I sure never taught you that. Before you know it, you'll even start thinking boys are kinda cute." Smirk!


The girl hardly constitutes a vigilante on any simple level. No, the adoptive Summers name pretty much signs her up for cosmic level problems on a global scale, rather than roaming the street randomly smacking skulls around. Mercenary work doesn't quite apply to the Messiah of countless future timelines.

"Looked like a metal scorpion. Cybernetic implant oriented technology that allowed mobility in place of legs. Possibly defensive measures but I wasn't there long enough to test the full range. I just threw the control room at him. He's probably fairly bitter about that." He might be reaching for the complicated labyrinth of her mind, and more than anyone else in this dimension or elsewhere, she might know that touch. Welcome it, even as his powers hammer her awareness to the point of inducing a mild headache, not quite building into an insistent aural migraine. "It's not right. We never were meant to go this far back in the first place, and now we are here and President… someone is murdered by aliens, or a god, instead of a regular assassin. A regular, normal murder." The irony is not lost on her. "That wasn't supposed to happen. At least that's what I hear. The rest of them have no idea but they are taking fairly badly to there being aliens in the government and among them. Let alone me. Believe me, there's almost no tech here. No computers. Their phones have dials on them. Things you have to roll back and forth. They have a 'mail man.' Not a man man, like one that delivers paper to other people. I'm pretty sure they're part of the mob."

Mafia USPS. Go figure.

"The yellow person is an alien, like I said. He heavily uses proxies, seems to be fresh into the mutant and human game. He certainly wasn't happy with me, and he's been taking others, friends included. We've been getting them back with difficulty. He seems to be using the entertainment industry and the media to reach out to them. Runs a television thing? Program?" These terms are alien to her, foreign language words slotted into English.


Cable has a lot of power. Without Hope needing to suppress the techno-organic virus, there's not a lot of better general range psions she can hitch up to. After all, in the majority of worlds, it becomes too powerful for his physical body to handle. How it's dealt with varies, but it's never pretty. Nathan knows well enough to appreciate it while it lasts. And, like usual, his mental shields are irrevocable. He's not any easier to understand with his telepathy, for sure. "Okay. That's an interesting visual picture, but it didn't answer any of the questions I had outside 'yellow' and 'apparatus'." he murmurs. He doesn't touch base on whether anything related to Kennedy was ever mundane, though. Some things just are what they are. "Normally he's shot in the head, right. It was always a major event, but did little on the global level beyond shift who had power. In a way that made things worse, to be fair."

"Hope… ugh. Mail is still delivered by hand in 50 years." He actually facepalms with his free hand. "Although it's just to enable overcompensated government jobs for lazy underqualified individuals due to the strength of the union as opposed to efficiency, like most things in the disaster that is national management." Of course. Media, though…? Cable tries going through his memory, but fails, because his recent memory barely exists. Oh, right. Okay, he'll have to do some research. "How long ago did he appear, you think? Now and then, there's a presence that destabilizes the fabric of reality around Earth. And I don't mean little blips. I can't really describe it easily." So normally he'd use telepathy to get the point across. …still doesn't. Unusual continues to get more unusual. "It's not permanent, but the longer it's around, the worse it gets. Could that be…?" Yellow. Blob. Media. Yellow… blob… media… No. This is new, for some reason. Why? New is *rare.*


The smirk on her face is worth the response. "I would ask why you don't run the show and fix everything but I figured out you probably don't want to. Dysfunctional politics never change, even when there isn't anything but a pile of sand and a few people standing on it." Hope, jaded long before her years, runs her hand through her hair, and stops upon finding the knit hat. She looks about and then pulls it off, giving her head a good shake, scraping her nails over her scalp. The small pleasures in life matter. "Who, the yellow slug? Six weeks, at least since he snagged another genetic anomaly. I don't know if he was watching us for weeks or not. He most definitely is observing mankind using all sorts of screens by the looks of it. I say control room but it was basically wall to ceiling glass displaying people everywhere. Programs. I tried to break as much as I could, but ripping that in a few seconds is difficult." Compared to the massive amounts of destruction done in six. That's yet to come. "Reality destabilisation. You mean…" Her expression changes, draining flat out, not that she had much colour to begin with. "We're not in a good state if we're having those holes. Those changes. Little changes become a big change, and do you have any idea of where the breaking point is, or how close we're getting to it?"


"You know why I don't just run the show." Cable grumbles. Or, well, he probably did. Sometimes. Did he? Wasn't that after he and Hope split…? He tried to keep her childhood normal, which meant not drowning her in his philosophy and beliefs, but obviously that was a piss-poor effort given how she turns out. Alas, she would have been in such a better place if he had embraced her as someone to carry his torch, instead of his awkward attempt to keep the 'Messiah' free to make her own choices. She always said she chose him, since she could talk. It stuck. Then again, what would change her mind, when every world they fled to was annihilated, and years were spent in a wasteland? "For one, nobody would allow it. You need to be cosmic to take over Earth, but even then, it's a universal pivot point for fate, and only in flawed timestreams does that happen. For two, in the universes I DID manage that, once I died, my programs exist for only a few generations, then it's back to normal. And normal, as you know, is bad."

Six weeks…? Graymalkin's been complaining about Mojo for longer than that, although outside understanding the scale and nature of the threat, information ahs been useless. The idea it's linked to media appears stupid, but he trusts Hope enough to follow the lead. "I dunno. This is new. Bad new. …It feels more like a parasite. Some singular entity that wanders into realities. That breaks the rules. That breaks /fate./ That means I can make no assumptions about it. It could destroy a thousand realities or reset the universe if it's careless. It's /that/ kind of 'bad'."


She probably knows a good reason why, and has plenty of other guesses. And no such thing exists as normal for a girl with a heavy soul and dark awareness for the curse of why she's in the future. Her beliefs clearly run parallel to the man who is her father in all ways that count, including the rebellion at being the future or eye rolling at the noble ideals of those who have no idea what those ideals cost. It hurts, sometimes, to see the naivete of her own age group here, incapable of imagining a future where they aren't the best and brightest.

"It's not right to take over the earth," she says in that quiet, flat tone, full of a leaden knowledge. "Why does everything happen here? Why does so much happen in this city? It's not like we have a choice. We came back here. Something seems to keep snagging us, the way it keeps snagging all these extraterrestrial forces. Aliens showing up happens. Things calling themselves happens. Don't imagine it's a surprise anymore, except it is. Just once, you know, I'd like to see things happen somewhere else like that big red planet covered in the tent culture. Go there. Why are we so fundamental? Is there some cosmic joke behind it all?"

Mojo may be something outside her ken; how long she has been here, as herself, is another fractional issue. "Bad is new. I think you're right, it's a parasite. One of many, and honestly, I'm of the impression and mind that punching it in the face won't work so much as we need to find it something more interesting to fight about. My friends are getting pretty tired of the abductions. I'm getting tired of it potentially screwing up their futures as much as mine. You know? I'd kind of like to live and end up decent, rather than annihilating humanity and setting off a massive war. Because you know the truth, Nay-nay." The oldest of names. It comes without trying. "He's coming. It's not a matter of time, now. It's a matter of how, and when he comes, it's going to make things so much worse."


"Do you want my opinion, or are you just asking a philosophical question?" Cable offers. After all, she's not asking any questions he hasn't himself. Only he's had rather more time to sort through it all than she has. "You might come to different conclusions. I'll leave it to you to find them for yourselves. Then, then you're 21, we'll compare notes over a drink." He reaches out to ruffle her hair. Pretty much the only physical affection he ever gives; what was originally an awkward gesture of someone not sure how to interact with a child, now something she probably both hates and loves. He never got converted to hugging or cuddling, after all, although nor did he mind being used as furniture.

"No." Cable states, with a sharpness that's rare. "Not one of many. That is the problem. I haven't had much time to analyze it, but the signals imply that this creature is a /singular being./ That means only one exists in any universe at any time. There is not infinite variants of them. Just THEM. Do you understand the implications of that?" Of course, what Hope might focus on is something else. 'Haven't had much time.' This is one of the most major possible crisises he could ever face, literally what he devotes his life to. What took priority while he was away? He's not going to talk. Hope knows that. But this might end up being one of those rare, potentially futile times she is going to demand things anyway.

"…Hope." Cable suddenly murmurs again. This time it has emotion to it, excessively rare. He slips closer, hand hesitating before moving to rest on her shoulder. "You… this is an opportunity." He glances around the surroundings of the planet. "You aren't the 'Messiah' here. You don't need to save the Mutant race here. You're just you. …That's what I always, genuinely wanted for you. You don't have to do this. You have a choice. You can just… be. Don't do it for my sake. In my heart of hearts, I want you to be happy. Not follow my lead. Because…"

Long moments spent staring off into the distance. The man with the hyper brain and instantly knows the precise response to everything, taking time to think. "It's not a good life. …It's not."


"When have you ever hidden the truth from me?" Loaded question that may be, and perhaps not. Hope chews the inside of her cheek, one of the few anxiety or stress tells she has, and not even then. Her eyes narrow slightly at the weight of Cable's broad hand landing on her scalp, still monumentally heavy. His strength is her strength, this close, the silent absorption and reflection of all his potential expressed in a single figure with loose, long hair the colour of flames and blood reflected in the glow of the sunset. Rather like a cat, she could soon as purr for the manhandling as claw his face off.

Settle on getting one of those feline looks, mildly amused. "Singular imperative, non-dimensional or multidimensional. You're really lucky I've got friends, you know that? Because, hmm, let's see. The one who threw a stadium? She is kinda unstable but knows people. Like Xavier. You know he's alive? He is. And then there are the boys who work with or for or something like governmenty, I wonder at them, except one of them, oh, does magic fingers stuff. Then there's the speedy one and he pretty much slows time down and blows things up with a touch you'll never see coming but he doesn't really know that yet. I mean, I hinted a little, but it's sort of rude to show everyone what they could be and not what they are. The girl elemental who can tap into networks but not really access the data, she manipulates the charge of particles, though, which I've been having a bit of fun with. Annnd I think she's got the spy gig down. Oh. And Dom." Pause. "And Raven. Shifting business, luck twisting, that jazz? Yeah. So, you know, friends. People. People because you fell out of wherever to fix Greymalkin, though they are caught up in a war they can barely see pieces of yet. I think Domino gets it and definitely Raven. The rest, they're up to here and it's all I can do to try to inspire them enough to not trip over The Big Bad Old One."

He rests his hand on her shoulder and she leans into it, a rare enough display to take, pained in the emotion, the need for something. "You don't get it. Do you? I'm your daughter. Where you go, I go. I made a choice. Lived here by myself long enough to make a few and that whole time, I waited for you. Because you pulled so much crap to keep me alive and okay, don't you get to be happy too? Give back? 'Good' life doesn't mean ignorant or tra-la-laing along knowing what I know, pretending I'll save the world sitting back and watching others do it. They won't. I've been fighting the whole time. We're family. I don't care who I was back then when you found me, we're that by choice. So whatever, you pull your hermit thing, I'm sitting on your head and peering into your hermit hut and saying hi to the machines so you don't get grumpy and start talking to the walls or anything. They're crappy for conversation."


"Only when I need to." Cable immediately responds. Which is, yet again, mostly truth. He doesn't deceive, he just doesn't say things. That 'not say things' part is probably the main points of contention in their complex relationship, really. Although he listens attentively when Hope begins going off the state of affairs, something he lost in his own little shuffle with the continuity of the timestream. The lack of names is mildly annoying, but capabilities are more important. And it wouldn't do to recognize strangers abruptly like that. Still, annoying. He'd like it for reference. And she knows that. Take this victory, Hope. "…" A similar pause at Domino, but no comment. "I see. But inspiring's your job. Not mine. I get things done. I don't inspire." A disapproving cluck of the tongue.

"What choice?" Cable responds, although it sounds more like personal guilt, as opposed to an accusation. "I failed you. I did. I couldn't give you a proper life. You turned out fine. I'm proud of you. But… what choice, Hope? I existed to make sure you didn't die. And I was your world. You have to understand that." He does another sigh, glancing back towards the mostly forgotten building still rippling with tarps. "But… fine. You're a big girl now, I guess. I'm more comfortable as a father figure than an outright father. So, what. Nineteen? Twenty? Anything new? Did I miss your own crush? No, wait… that was the guy on that poster you found at 13. Remember that?" Oh, he sure did.


"I don't get anything done. I managed to mess up a bunch of mutants, briefly. Shot at some crazy humans who think that wiping us out is the answer. Punched a slug. This world is so backward, so remote, it's as bad as when we were here in the Revolution and then the traders were there with the Native American people." He clucks his tongue, she fires back. "Look. I'll introduce you to them, though Raven and Domino are… Running rough. You may not like my connections there but I landed hard and made connections where I could."

She sighs and puts her hand on his arm, the immense difference in composition, solidity, and raw presence simply there. Hope frowns, and the bright lines of her eyebrows sharply angle downards. "You didn't fail. So we never had the same roof over our heads. I went to spa… Oh, I met an animated intelligent tree. He's incredibly friendly, that one, though somewhat hard to talk to. The guy with him's pretty interesting and he has blaster pistols. Human, I think? But he was happy to come back for cheeseburgers and we talked a bit about the spatial lay of the land. Not nearly enough. The tree might tell me more, but it's hard to pry." Read, telepathy is a limit when you don't have a telepath around. A squeeze of her fingers. "You do not get to go 'Yeah did what I was told to, now I'm outta here.' Seriously, no. There isn't a normal life. My normal is you."


"Your list is just going to get weirder and longer over time." Cable promises, with a long sigh. "And I don't care who you associate with. You're you. If you DO something I don't approve of, then you'll find out fast that you can steal my power, but that won't stop me from spanking you." That certainly sounds rather challenging. Which is new. All of Hope's life, he never once really sparred with her. He took on all the combat. The only times he ever got mad was when she tried to help. That is the one training she had to emulate, as opposed to actually being taught.

"Talking trees? Not met one of those before. You got me beat for once. Keep it up." Although there's a mild wariness in his expression when she mentions going out for hamburgers with someone she finds 'interesting'. "…forget this. If there's one thing in life that's true, it's that things can wait. They'll be here in twenty minutes." A gesture, and Hope's ground-laden equipment flicks up to be grasped by Cable. Faster than an annoyed sound, "Bodyslide by two."

Not a lot to be done about abruptly being transplated into an alleyway some distance off. She can't steal THAT power, after all. And only he's able to use the Professor. "Here. Let's get a bite to eat. That's normal, right? We'll try normal." Lifting up a trashcan, he unceremoniously dumps everything inside, replacing the lid. It's… mostly not visible. He even drops in his plasma rifle, as if it wasn't an irreplaceable relic from the future that nations here would go to war to reverse engineer. "Do you like steak? Protein's good for building mass and energy. Did I ever say that? Well, it is." Yes, they are beside a high end steakhouse.


She gives him a look, one of those pointedly feminine ones that also resembles the disbelief of a cat. Hope puts her hands on her hips. The reaction lasts as long as it takes to slide to the street, and cue hasty scrabble to cover her hair with her knitted hat, even as she tosses her rifle and tripod in. Then the brass knuckles. Then the machine pistol.

Leaving her with her hands on her hips still, she says, "Of course I like steak. I know exactly where steak is good for me and you need it just as much. Though how do we do the money thing? Because mostly I've been getting by through things that are mildly questionable, like making sure funds extorted by a guy who doesn't like mutants never get to the business of the people who don't like mutants. It seemed really fair, you know?"

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