1964-06-29 - A Boy And His Dad
Summary: Vic comes to visit Dear Old Dad to find out more about him.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
strange vic 

The soft steps of his passing echo in the expanse beyond the foyer. The lean frame of the Sorcerer paces past the Grand Staircase, beneath the stylized window Eye of Agamotto in its panes in many colors. His scowl is for darkwood panels of wood beneath his feet. They reflect ghosts of the mansion around and of himself as he turns and heads back the way he came.

How…? And why — but mostly how. How was this managed? What critical component came to be in that moment to enable such a creation? Strange muses, one arm tucked cross his chest, the other enabling him to rest the knuckles of his fingers against the thin line of his mouth. The wards — they wander with him, curling about like the lissome mist that rises from the ponds in the early morning.

On that topic, there's a knock on the door, and the wards would no doubt be able to identify the mote made flesh. Who is in a white t-shirt and jeans, his curly hair growing a bit long on his head. He hasn't had it cut since before the coma. He rakes his hand through his hair, then shoves his hands in his pockets and rocks on his heels. Okay, Vic, be cool. How can he be cool? Last time he was here, he hyperventilated. The time before that, he came into being. No pressure for this three-times-a-charm.

Pausing before the base step of the staircase, the Sorcerer eyes the front entrance and the wards that whisk to ascertain just who haunts his stoop this time.

Nerves. Progeny. Mote.

A sigh, long-suffering, one Billy knows well. "I swear, they do this to me deliberately," he grumbles, striding then over to the doors. They being the gods…or capricious Fate. Opening the door means an influx of cool morning air into the Sanctum and there stands Strange, in his usual casual formal-wear of button-down and slacks, apparent father to the young man standing with hands in his pockets.

A long moment of silence in which his guest is looked upon, measured in a way, before he nods. "Victor. Come inside." Turning away and gesturing 'come-hither', he walks with a brisk step. "Close the door behind you." To the living room, of course, with its silent fireplace and ever-warmed tea pot.

Vic is given a thorough inspection by the guardian spells that swirl about him, momentarily curling him within a fog-dragon's coils. They might feel to tickle on him, the whuffling of a giant nose sussing out what makes him uniquely him, and the sensations of the once-over are likely more physical than on any other guest to enter the Sanctum. After all, they aren't too far off from cousins to the Mote of Cognizance.

Vic steps in and closes the door, then he goes still as the guardian spells do their good work. He smiles despite himself, because it tickles, and there is a dim sense of kinship with these wards. He holds his arms out so they can inspect him more thoroughly. "I think I pass muster," he says once they're done.

Then his expression grows serious. "I hope I'm not interrupting anything. I just wanted to say hi and apologize for last time. I didn't mean to freak out. It was just a lot to take in." He seems somewhat subdued at the moment, walking on a few eggshells. He follows after Strange, and he takes a seat in the chair he was shown to last time. "So, uh, how are you?"

Indeed, the young man passes muster. The guardian wards, sensing said kinship, sparkle like the strumming of the Milky Way before swishing off into the beams of the Sanctum. Once Vic is ensconced in his chair, Strange glances up from preparing tea. His smile is mild, more one of social nicities than anything else, and he replies quietly,

"Wanda would say that I've been preoccupied. Reality itself has been disturbed. If you're familiar at all with 'undertows'…something is playing at it. I wondered that you're the reason for it, but now, I'm certain that it's not your presence now in the world." He thins his lips again before shaking his head, eyes shuttered off for a fleeting second. "It's nothing you need to worry about."

Vic's cup of tea is delivered to him, something medium in depth and intensity, with a dollop of cream and honey to soften it more as needed. Strange himself has a deep, dark blend, chockful of natural caffeine and herbs to aid in centering the mind. He sits in his own chair, takes a large mouthful of his tea, and sets it aside before meeting his guest's attention.

"There's nothing to apologize for. In the grand scheme of things, Billy finding you first before anyone else is a boon. I don't have enough digits to count the number of others who would desperately want to have found you first." Gods below, he's so serious now, watching Vic with a shuttered expression.

Vic watches Strange with those eerily familiar blue eyes, wide and solemn. "Yes, sir," he says. Dad was a World War II vet, and before he left, he taught the boy what's what about addressing one's elders. It's the only blueprint the mote has. He takes the tea with a murmured, "Thank you. It turns out I like tea."

He half-smiles and ducks his head as he says, "Billy wasn't the first to find me, but the guy I met, he's pretty nice. We're all friends now. Me, Kellan, Billy, and Teddy. I was lucky, as you said. Billy's great. He's been filling me in on the family and how important you and M— and your consort are."

The sigh of wry amusement is nearly silent, but does twinkle in the Sorcerer's eyes, even muted as it is.

"She's your metaphysical mother, you might as well use the word. She won't bite you for it." He shifts in the chair, adopting a more relaxed settling in it, with ankle atop one knee. "I'm glad to hear that you've found a support system in the boys. It's critical to keeping you stabilized…your energy, that is. Just an apology, though? That's all you came to visit for?" He's not pushy with the question, merely throwing it out as a lifeline for someone who might be floundering still.

Vic relaxes some and says, "Okay, I'll call her Mom, and you Dad." That's what Strange gets for opening that door. "But I know it has to be secret. You can't have people knowing you've got kids because they could use that against you." Billy gave him the rundown.

He takes a drink of his tea, eyes lidding with pleasure, and he says, "I came to get to know you. I've never mad a family before. I don't have any memories of a real family. I know you two didn't expect me, but you're all I've got. You and Billy. And I want you to know me. I want you to know I'm stable in this body, and I love being alive. I wanted to thank you."

There's that cognomen again — Dad. It doesn't have the same whip-crack snap of surprise as when first used by the other son, but the Sorcerer still averts his attention momentarily for the weird heart-wrenching twist it gives him. Even he doesn't know how long it'll take for him to be used to it.

Honesty seems to be the best tack to take, even if it's rough ground and he's skinning the soles of his feet walking it. "Billy is correct. Wanda and I never intended to have children. Our positions in current reality have garnered us many enemies, all of whom would relish the chance to hold us to the fire." His accent manages to both become more pronounced and crisp. "I insist that you identify us as your parents within the safety of the Sanctum or our presence, and tactfully if so." The front he puts up crumples slightly, seen in the crow's feet at his eyes and in the divot of a concerned frown. He speaks more quietly. "However, I'm glad to hear that you're comfortable in your body. I…" The sentence stumbles. "You're welcome, I suppose," and he laughs, awkwardly, acknowledging the oddness of the sentiment. Both hands rise palm-up briefly before patting down on the chair's arms. "Get to know me then. Ask away. I have time."

Vic smiles, and he's got a nice smile. Straight, white teeth, dimples, and painfully sweet. "All right, Dad," he says, still tentative, but pleased. The memories in his mind craved a real father. Someone to teach him how to play ball, fix a car, and all that other dad stuff. Alas, that's not in the cards, but still. A real father. And a real mother.

"Being alive is great," he says. "There's ice cream, and oxygen, and all the noise and bustle, and I love this city. This city is the center of the world. I love the hot dog carts, the pretzel stands, the noodle places in Chinatown, then funnel cakes at Coney Island. I don't care whatever potential I might have had, there's no power I want more than a Nathan's hot dog on a Saturday." He sighs, content.

"I guess what I want to know is what you do. I know you're an important pointy hat, but I don't know what that means."

That smile digs sharp claws into Strange's heart. A flash of memory haunts him even as he listens to the little delights of eating about the city of New York. Seven hells, the kid is so damn similar in ways to… No, stop. The past is done.

"Pointy…hat. I should have Billy expound on that — unless he's backhandedly referring to Merlin's choice in headgear which is beyond me," and Strange smiles to himself. Ah, that batty sorcerer. A passing wish for him to be around leaves the Sanctum. "Billy likely told you that I'm the Sorcerer Supreme, guardian of the Fate of humanity and current reality. I guard the metaphysical while the other…heroes and vigilantes of this city guard the physical. I sew together the rips of the veils between worlds and parallel universes. When I'm not doing those things, I gather lost relics from the hands of the unknowing and the abusing alike — and when I'm not doing that, I…pretend to have a life beyond it." It's clear that the man has a love-hate relationship with his mantle a good portion of the time.

Vic takes a moment to drink his tea as he listens, and again as he formulates an answer. For all that the previous occupant of this body worked mostly in impulse, this Victor is a thinker. "Billy didn't put it like that," he admits when he finally does answer, "but I think I got the gist. You're really important, and it's a heavy mantle. Is Mom in the same business? Do you at least have people who can help share the load? He leans forward, friendly concern knitting his brow. He's a few days old, feeling his way around the world, naive to so many dangers, and yet his first impulse is to help.

"Your mother helps when she can. You could say that she's in the same line of business by proxy of being my Consort. Between the two of us, we manage to keep the sun rising each day." His curl of a smirk is self-effacing somehow, but with a friendly brush of teasing humor through it — the type one puts forth when having accepted a consistent state of semi-weariness.

"Don't worry about us. The gods wouldn't have imparted our talents if they knew we couldn't handle the messes thrown our way."

Glancing aside self-consciously, he says, "I'm going to worry. It's a lot to think about. You've got all this going on, and now you got a new liability." When he looks to Strange again, the earnestness in his eyes renders them puppyish. It would be his luck the mote would find a pretty boy with broad expressions. "I want to be a good son. Tell me what your expectations are, and I'll fulfill them. I've never gotten to be a good son before."

Oh, gods below. Vic puts Billy's earnesty to a hard test of comparison. Strange's brows rise as he considers what precisely that would entail. Used to clashing to some degree with the other two offspring, Strange finds himself stymied by the myriad of answers available.

"Well…" he begins, pausing with mouth partially open. He closes it before shifting in the chair and resting his silvered temple against fingertips. "I expect you to listen — at least consider what wisdom your mother and I tell you. I expect you to keep an eye on Billy, in a brotherly sense. I expect you to report to me with concerns of any kind. Any kind." He shifts to sip at his tea and finds it cooler than his want. Another huge sip to lower the level and then he rises. Over to the tea stand and a warmer adding, hot enough to steam again. "Inasmuch as I hate to add it…because I sound like my own damn father," and he huffs a chuckle before looking to Vic with such gravity again, "I expect you to remember who your parents are and don't give us reason to speak with you about respecting the family name. You're now a part of a very well-known family, at least within the Mystical circles of reality proper."

No pressure, bro.

Vic nods as he listens, not taking his eyes from Strange. It's a tall order, but the youth is all ears. "I'll make you proud," he says. "I'm not going to go down the criminal road like my memories. I'm joining Billy's group to fight crime." He sits up, bright-eyed. "I can lift things with my mind, and I'm super strong, and I heal fast. When Billy and I work together we can make these really big bolts of electricity."

He eases off with the enthusiasm. Quieter, he says, "But I'll use my abilities for good, and I'll be careful. He nods to emphasize the words. He hemhaws, then says, "I do have one concern. It's about Kellan. We're kind of, uh, really getting along, but I don't know how to seal the deal. I know it's wrong, being with another guy, but he makes me feel all weird inside in a good way."

Hey, Strange said to bring his concerns, any concern.

Strange takes the agreement to heart, notes the powers shared with a little nod, and then returns to his chair. Ah, a concern — that type of concern.

He sets aside his tea cup after another mouthful, pops his lips, and then levels an interested look towards Vic.

"If it's a concern, I should deal with it….hmm?" Someone's been hanging around with the Witch, clearly, to level such a dryly-humorous question towards the young man. The Sorcerer's grin is meant to assuage any flutterings of panic that could have occurred.

"There's nothing wrong with it, never has been. It's a societal hang-up within this reality that should be ignored entirely. I realize, after many years of traveling between universes and dimensions, that humankind thinks of itself as being the ultimate in evolution…in creation…but they prove otherwise time and time again. Do what you will, Victor, in terms of affection. I cannot go about erasing such prejudice from the minds of our society, so act with care — but love as you will. Your mother and I sincerely could care less…unless, of course, this Kellen intends to use you as a blood-sacrifice on the autumnal equinox, in which case, I object." And he points, smirking.

Vic's brow knits and he rubs the back of his neck. "Gosh, I think it might be a little weird having my Pop go talk to him. I'm just hung up on how to tell him I hope it's not just physical. But we only just met, and I don't want him to think I'm moving too fast." The words come slowly and with care. Dad says he doesn't care, which is a relief, but such an odd one. He knows full well how his biological father would've responded, and he'd be left picking up his own teeth.

Maybe that's why the look Victor levels on Strange is so warm. With a ripple of laughter, he says, "No, he's not like that. He's got powers like Billy and I, and he's a good guy. He's pretty much supporting me right now while I look for a job, but not many people hire ex-cons."

"I can't imagine many companies wanting to risk it, no," replies Strange. "At least, not any with a decent HR department. You might need to start fairly low on the rungs. Clerical, grease-work…janitorial." He glances to the surface of his tea, steaming as it is, as if wondering what would come of reading the dregs at its bottom. "My connections might as well have been severed with the acceptance of my mantle. My name holds more power within the realm of the Mystical rather than the public these days. Keep searching. Something will come of your efforts."

The tea cup makes a soft clunk when placed back down after another sip. "I'd be candid with this Kellan. Tell him the truth the first time around. Gauge his interest level, go from there. Put on the breaks yourself if you're worried. I understand…it's hard to keep your hands to yourself during that honeymoon phase." His expression goes softer, like a ray of sun peeking from the clouds, and it's clear that his affections for the Witch run deep.

Vic grins stupidly, just like an infatuated young man. "Yeah," he says, "it's been hard to focus on much else. He's really great." His features soften as he catches that glimpse of Strange's own warmth. "I'm probably going to say this a zillion times, but thank you so much for bringing me into being. Both of you. I hope you'll tell Mom how grateful I am. Every day I wake up, it's like…" He pauses, struggling with words. He gestures vaguely with his near-empty teacup. "Sometimes I'll sit on a park bench and just watch it all go by, and I think 'I get to be part of this.'" Little does he know he'll be part of it forever, and people will come and go from his life too, too quickly.

He purses his lips when it occurs to him that his dad's warmth comes from reminiscing about his mother. That is gross, Father. He wrinkles his nose, but he's a Good Boy and says nothing about it. "Kellan's well off," he mentions, skipping tracks. "Which is good because I eat a lot. Like, a lot a lot. I have to. I just keep saying I'll pay him back but the grocery bill alone…"

"Either pay him back or accept that he doesn't mind. It's not a matter of coinage or holding each other accountable like some score sheet. Don't mire yourself in that," and Strange waves his hand in a curt, dismissive motion. "Your mother also knows of your gratitude, I promise. There's no need to tell her, unless you truly feel that it should be said. We're not here to have you…groveling. Life is precious. We protect it, she and I. There's no need for thanks," he repeats again with calm insistence.

Vic shakes his head and sits forward on his chair. "It's not groveling," he says, and his expression is alight with something only the innocent can possess in such abundance: joy. "I just get so happy I could burst. I was nothing, and then I was something, and now I'm alive. That's just so… neat!"

Then there's an indelicate growling from his stomach, and he lays a hand over it, like if he ignores it, it'll go away. "Maybe I can at least clean up around the apartment," he says, "or learn how to cook and share the wealth. I know it's not a score card, but I don't want to be a mooch. I feel like I have a lot to give."

Strange returns the smile, his own full of charm carefully reined in for the worries of his world.

"I keep hearing about this Julia Child person. She has a book, even a show, I believe. She'd be the place to start, according to the chatter I hear around the tea shop down the way." O'Riley's, his true connection to the public. How the housewives natter on about this woman.

"I might try to marry her," Vic says, "and hope Kellan understands." He drinks the rest of his tea, hoping the cream and honey will provide a few more calories to keep his metabolism happy. A son of a man who can't eat, and he can't stop eating.

"What's Mom like?" he asks. "Billy says she's not much older than us and she's not as cold as she seems, and that family's everything to her, but I know this has all been kind of dumped on you guys." Hastily he adds, "Not that I'm sorry. I like existing too much to be sorry. But I understand."

"You're fine," and Strange waves a hand again, shooing aside what apology may have existed in the young man's statements. "Your mother is…"

He needs to think, he really does. She's…

"She's incomparable. Matchless. Peerless in the realm of the Mystical. She is beautiful and fiery and fierce and gods below, she challenges me on a regular basis to live up to her." He bites his lip, but still that vaguely silly smile comes forward. "She is the epitome of everything good in my life. Family…family is everything to us both, Victor."

There's that bruising of grief again that deflates his grin somewhat. "Neither of us have had it easy with our families…your mother least of all. It's her tale to tell, should she wish. Ask her when you speak to her if you feel that the timing is appropriate. Don't be surprised if she's curt with you."

Vic bows his head and says, "Yeah, Billy was saying she's not very warm, but don't mistake it for not caring." He smiles softly, a little sadly. "This body's mother was none of those things you just said. He got taken away after she'd leave him for days at a time, and she threw stuff at him. I'm glad I can't feel what he felt, because I think it would break my heart. I think I'm going to just have to get used to a life of gratitude, because not only is my mother better than that, she sounds amazing. Better than the ideal mother the previous mind used to dream up.

He finishes his tea and holds the empty cup loosely in his hands. "I don't want you to think I'm groveling when I'm grateful. It's a beautiful feeling, to just be so glad you are where you are."

"I think you'll like her when you meet her. She's off running her errands, but you'll cross paths soon enough, I'm sure. Be patient with her, when you do. She's not much older than you physically, no, but she was an adult long before she needed to be." Strange leaves any explanation as to the Witch's life story at that. "In fact…I bet…" and his smile returns, playful, conspiratorial. "You mentioned learning to cook. Start with baking. Baklava, in particular. Use excessive amounts of honey. You should win her over based off that alone." He laughs and it's a glad sound, nearly the belling that Wanda's used to about the Sanctum.

"I understand that you're not groveling, I do. It is a beautiful feeling. You're welcome to more tea, if you'd like," he adds, tilting his head towards the tea stand by the hearth.

Vic's eyes brighten. "I know what to bring next time. If I can't make it, there's this Greek place I was thinking of asking for a job at, and their baklava is really good. One way or another…" He winks. Suggestion taken. And there's new appreciation for his mother, because anyone who likes baklava can't be bad.

He gets up to pour himself more tea. "How did you two meet? You both seem so perfect for each other, but not the type to, what's the word I'm looking for, go out and meet people?"

It's a mellow amusement that dances through his patrician features. Strange sips at his tea and holds the demi-tasse in his hands.

"We're not that sort, no. I met your mother…hunting demons, believe it or not. Yes, they exist, and they hold a serious grudge against us both. Central Park, last October, hosted a particularly evil rip into our reality. The papers dubbed it a 'Hellmouth', which was entirely appropriate. I was in combat with a demon from what the public would consider the 'seventh circle'," Airquotes with one hand, "and your mother took note. Between us, we vanquished it and I invited her back for tea. She…impressed me enough that we decided to agree to a pact. I would provide her a place of safety, she would clear the Park of demons when I was committed otherwise." He sips at his tea, but is completely unable to hide the dimples. "And it…bloomed from there, I suppose." As he holds up a hand, twin spheres of light appear above the uptilted fingers. Gossamer, one in sky-vault blue, the other in scarlet, they spin about some unseen point of gravity before merging together. A rich violet hue appears in the resulting orb, all starlight and candy-fluff that it appears. Strange watches it with a lazy smile. "Little did I know she was my soul-mate. Literally. The auras of practitioners blend perfectly only when this occurs. I wonder at it still."

Vic retakes his chair, and he settles back to listen. As he does his features soften, then get downright goofy with 'aww.' "That's great," he says. "You two were destined, I think. Not by some magical force but by the fact you're both drawn to the same things. How lucky you were both in the same place at the same time." Sure, because demon attacks are always serendipitous.

He watches the twin spheres wrap around each other and merge, and he says, "I bet you feel lucky every day, no matter what you get hit with, because of her."

Strange nods, indulging in a subtle curling of his fingers and twist of wrist. The amaranthine witchlight begins a slow rotation in place, gaining a semblance to a planet with half-formed rings of space-dust.

"I'm possibly the luckiest Sorcerer Supreme to grace the annals of history. Her powers are beyond imagining and yet she has such control over them. Her loyalty, despite her past, is unwavering. I can't grant her anything less than…all of me. Still…destiny is an odd thing." He frowns thoughtfully, twirling his pointer finger up at the orb. It spins a little faster, its rings growing.

Vic watches with interest. He doesn't ask if this is how he was made, though it's a question that will no doubt come up at some point. "I haven't even met her yet," he says, "and I'm proud to be her son. Is it possible to love someone without ever seeing them before? The way you talk about her, she's just amazing. I'm definitely going to start bringing by baklava. Even if I don't catch her here, I can leave it for her." This is how traditions are born, gifts brought shamelessly to his mother to delight any sweet tooth.

"How are you doing that?" he asks, jumping tracks again. He makes a mimic of the gesture Strange is doing, but alas, magical power isn't on his list of abilities, at least not like that.

"If you come by and neither of us are present, I suggest returning at another time. The wards may not let you in, and if they do, nothing keeps Aralune from attacking because she doesn't recognize you. The Malk kitten," Strange explains, glancing over at Vic. "She's defensive of her territory and their scratches cause hallucinations as well as severe pain in the case of allergic reactions."

He then shifts into Mentor Mode. "This is a witchlight, a construct composed of ambient light-energy within the Sanctum. In cases of no light, you can draw it from your aura or life-energy, but the construct then gains a signature of its own and identifies you to anything with Mystical senses in the immediate area. It's apprentice-level magic, one of the first things learned at Kamar-Taj after the drawing of a Mystical weapon from the strands of reality itself." The Sorcerer narrows his eyes at the globe and it rapidly shifts into a facsimile of a bird. "Exerting willpower upon it can change its shape or attributes." The bird flaps its wings a few times before seeming to visually shift up the gradient scale in intensity. A vertiable phoenix in miniature hovers above his palm, impossibly capturing the translucency of living iris-petals. In a pique of showmanship, Strange blows air at it and it disappears, as if snuffed out. "Easy stuff." And there's that ego.

Vic nods as he says, "Malk kitten, territorial, got it." He has no idea what a Malk kitten is. He can't given how casually he takes that in. As the witchlight is molded and shifts, he watches with all the wow of a kid being shown a magic trick. "Oh, man," he says, "if I could do that, I bet it would impress Kellan like nobody's business." He holds up his teacup. "Here's what I can do." He lets his hands fall away, but the teacup remains upright and suspended in midair. He wills the teacup to his lips, and he drinks, then he wills it away. "It's useful, but not all that original." He takes the teacup in hand again.

Strange observes the young man and his power in action, his irises faintly lambent about the centers with the Sight. He can't see any signs of the threads of reality being plucked, as in the case of Wanda or Billy, and no signs of wisping Mystical power wrapping about the tea cup.

"It's not a matter of originality, not with that ability. I've seen it before, in an old friend up north, at the Institute. Telekinesis indeed. That's useful," and he accents his opinion with another point of a finger. "It takes far less preparation and energy input than what I have to do. I know I make it look easy, but gods below, it's a task sometimes."

"I know I couldn't do what you do," Vic says. "But I've got that trick up my sleeve. Unfortunately the other thing one can tangibly see tends to short-circuit electricity and bow up light bulbs, but if you're ever tired and I'm around…" He holds out a hand. "Here, I promise this won't hurt. Billy and I are still figuring out everything I can do, and we're learning to work together. "This one is cool."

Strange smiles and narrows his eyes, taking on a knowing air.

"It's not a matter of trust when I ask you to explain what you're attempting to do, Victor. It's a matter of keeping the wards from taking you apart at the atomic level. So…what are you intending to do?"

Vic glances around the place. Woof. Those wards. One might forgive the youth for not seeming terribly comfortable. "Um, nothing harmful. If you're feeling worn down, I can give you a boost. I can take away your oomph too, but I wouldn't do that to you. I wouldn't do that to anyone unless I had to. It's just that if I do it on electronics they go wonky."

The good Doctor rolls his hand in a gesture intending to communicate 'go on'.

"Right, so your ability has more to do with conducting pure energy itself than healing anyone. You're akin to…a defibrillator, perhaps?" He's still not about to take Vic's hand, not without a full and proper explanation. The wards are jealous things in regards to his safety and being half-stunned wouldn't let him call them off.

Vic's offered hand wobbles in a so-so gesture. "It's more like feeling refreshed. Like if you're fatigued, it'll make you feel less fatigued. More like go-juice than electricity. I think it messes with electrical things because they're not made to self-repair. It goes into the wires and they just fry because they don't know what else to do with it. Even when I make people tired, it doesn't hurt them. It's not a killing power."

"Ah-hah. So…an ability grounded in bioelectrical power, the same natural kinetics of the mitochondria in a cell? That would not mesh properly with electronics, if this is the case."

Strange's eyes fall to the offered hand and back up again. "I believe you, Victor, truly, but another time, I think. The tea is a pick-me-up and the Sanctum should not have an overly-energized Sorcerer puttering around it." He smiles, as if there's a story there.

Vic hesitates, then withdraws his hand and says, "I guess you wouldn't want to get too buzzed. I just want to show you what I can do. Billy and I do work well together." He wraps his hand awkwardly around his teacup with its mate. "Small steps, I guess. Showing you stuff." He finishes his tea and sets the cup aside. "Anyway, maybe later? I'm going to see if that place down the street has baked goods or something." He's dying to death from a whole visit without shoving carbs in his face. To death!

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