1964-08-24 - Feeling Better
Summary: After being snatched from the jaws of death, Vic mends while Dad helps and Mom goes to sort out a bad driver.
Related: http://marvel1963mush.wikidot.com/log:1964-08-23-a-parent-s-nightmare
Theme Song: None
vic strange wanda 


Vic takes Strange's healing energy into him in strong, thirsty pulls like someone guzzling a beer. Just the one beer, though. He doesn't push it. The energy speeds his own healing, and though there is a lot of damage to undo, eventually he is on his feet, with help. He can limp, and he goes where his father leads

"I don't remember what happened," he admits, somewhat abashed. He looks down at himself, jeans bloodied torn and with wicked road rash, t-shirt blooded. Dry blood crusting in his hair. He has the taste of blood in his mouth. It was everywhere, pooled where his body lay.

"Is everyone okay?" Because that's the first thing he thinks to ask.

Money down that the police and EMTs are still arguing about the bloodstain with no source in the middle of the road. Someone has to have gotten the license plate for that truck, right?!

…no matter. Blood will out. The man might feel the metaphysical weight of karma between his shoulderblades even if he tries to hide. Cue the JAWS music.

"We're fine," Strange replies. He's found his island of calm emotionally for the simple fact that a heart beats and the kid is cognizant enough to ask grammatically-complete questions. Breathing is good too. The battle-leathers will need a wash for the rusty stains, but it's kith and kin, so no hurry to remove it. The crimson Cloak is dismissed to its perch by the master bedroom doors. Vic has been relegated to a certain couch tucked to a side wall where his own father, many a time, has collapsed until able to help himself or said help arrived. Kneeling down, Strange takes the youth's chin so very carefully in-hand and attempts to turn it to various angles in the light, testing the reaction of pupil time and in turn, taking count of pulse rate. At the moment, the seed of his visceral reaction, that acknowledgment of similarity in all but literal personage between lost brother and Mote human-bound, is stuffed away and hermetically sealed with duct tape in some box in the corner of his mind.

Now is the healing. Not the weeping.

"What hurts?" Hey, simple question, easy to answer as little and as much as possible.

And on a street…

They are gone. Child and adult. Sorcerer and… reanimated individual being thing. Wanda does not go with them. Not at the outset.

Money means nothing in the endless tick-tock doom playing out its purpose according to the relentless march of time. One foot down and the next follows proverbially. Only the crystalline orb in the metal lattice can halt the rushing current, and its master hasn't yet called upon Agamotto.

Head turned parallel over her sloping shoulder, Wanda stares out at the street proper. Asphalt rumbles slightly beneath her feet, stressed and settling back into its uneasy sleep. Her arcane tethers slam deep, dozens of meters to root her in the bedrock. The cracks in the ground where initially she landed still sprout flowers not there impeding traffic a few hours ago. But a full season's growth and then there are.

Her fingers remain poised just so and hold the generous allotment of power filtered through her aura, stained an increasingly sharp shade of fuchsia. The balance lies in the red spectrum, not the violet. She has something worse to do, a worst outcome, rolling with the implacable force she is. Vicissitudes of kismet aren't going to be nice on a certain driver tonight.

Hunter, hunted.

Vic's pulse is a little irregular, but nothing that would cause alarm in a patient who wasn't dead moments ago. His eyes respond well to light, if a little delayed. He's like a machine taking a little time to rev up. When taken in hand, he moves his head where Strange directs him without thinking to resist. Even now, he's an easygoing, trusting youth.

"My hip," he says quietly. He lies weakly, but alive. Perhaps weakness can be forgiven. "And my leg." Which is no longer twisted at an odd angle. "My ribs are starting to feel better." Still, his breath hitches. So it's the bones, now. They're dense, complicated. His life force apparently does the big breaks last.

Somewhere out there, a drunk driver has driven his truck sideways across his lawn and still sits behind the wheel, panicking. Did he hit a kid? Oh god. He can't go back to jail. His truck is dented in the front. No hiding this sin.

Strange's attention moves to each point of complaint on the young man's body, his dark brows knitted.

"I'm concerned about overloading your system with another round of healing magic, Vic," he explains quietly, the hand that once guided his patient's head now resting upon said patient's shoulder. "Still, there is more I can do. I have an herbal tea that functions to support the wellspring of where your mother and I draw our magic from, that soul-font. Given that your Mote is…related, in essence, it may respond well to it. Relax. Keep breathing."

Gods above and below, keep doing that above all else.

A little smile, tired but true, and the Sorcerer rises to his feet. The tea stand isn't far away, within easy hearing distance should Vic continue to speak to him, and thus begins the preparation. He has no issue spoonfeeding the tisane to the youth if need be. Life is precious.

Minding that he's likely being observed, Strange turns his face away and allows himself a grimace of further concern even as he closes his eyes. He knows Wanda's not present within the Sanctum. The words fly across the soulbond, silent to all but the speaker and the one wearing the diadem in multi-gems.

«Beloved». You hunt. Nary a lilt of questioning in his tone, simply the calm expectation of a reply for the moment.

Somewhere is a vehicle conspicuously marked by an impression, a guilty stain on its bumper or crumpled along its undercarriage. Hitting people at any speed invariably impacts metal. Even the heavy chrome and good Detroit steel pumped out by the auto plants warps when encountering flesh.

Wanda only has to look. Dismiss that Chevy, this Chrysler, that comparative econobox of a Ford that may be thirteen yards long unlike the others. Her coat flows around her with every hobbled stride, length inhibited by the everchanging directions taken by her gaze. Tick, tick, tick. Seconds pass. Tick, tick, tick. They'll live tonight.

In life are accidents. Circumstance turns funny on edge. Coincidences when disparate events line up for a brief moment and then flash away on their diverging orbits. Does the witch believe in them?

Not by a long shot. Even those warping chance fall in a wider pattern and she walks one of those splintering threads, feeling for diverging intersections, for him. The response along the soul-bond anchored to her pendant is probably not comfortable, a distant calculation not unlike when she hunts sunbeams with hooked claws. Except there's no wide-eyed ocelot about to take down a rabbit, not really. You fix the broken. I see other breaks.

Vic tries to sit up and immediately regrets it. Sucking in a breath, he lies back again and lets it out slowly. "Tea sounds nice," he says. So quiet, but there. And breathing. Even with cracked ribs still healing, dutifully he breathes.

Vic does in fact watch his father, and his expression softens, pain or no pain. Whereas Strange turns his face away to hide that grimace, Vic makes no effort to mask the affection he has for his father. Deeper than that, some visceral understanding of what all of this means. He doesn't remember what happened per se (the brain often does this with trauma), but he knows — he knows — his Mother and Father love him enough they suffer when he is in pain.

He blinks a few times and looks away lest Dad see his eyes tear up. This swell of emotion threatens to overwhelm him. He can blame his leg or hip for the tears he wipes away with a hand whose shoulder was dislocated but is now fine.

Sitting in his car, the man weeps like a wounded. He didn't mean to hit the kid. The kid came out from nowhere! Maybe he was just grazed. Does the man dare go back? No. No, he can't. He should go into the house, but what is he going to tell the wife? When she sees the truck and smells the booze on his breath? When news of the kid's death gets around? He's lost, panicking. Stopping off for a few cold ones on his way home from work never should've ended like this!

He's nearly mended — time and tea. Spare the driver, «Beloved». Our son lives. Rest assured that the good Doctor would heavily consider asking otherwise of the scarlet-eyed Witch who unerringly pads after the scent of guilt and innocence in red on dented chrome if there were no rise and fall of a mending ribcage on the chaise lounge.

Opening his eyes again, Strange returns to making the tea. The water pours, its steaming stream catching ambient light refractions and breaking upon the secretive blend of greenery that brings an extra spark to the internal flame.

"Your mother will be out for a while," he says, glancing towards Vic. His expression is schooled to neutrality save for the crow's feet of disquiet. "She has an errand to run." Oh, how blandly he imparts this information to the youth.

|ROLL| Wanda +rolls 1d100 for: 55

Terror does funny things to the mind. Thoughts run off the rails during times of trauma. People act oddly. They might go into a total black fugue or drop conveniently into amnesia. Shut down, key up, the outcome really doesn't matter too much except to excuse the usual rules of behaviour.

A driver freaking out over his steering wheel could think about opening the door to vomit right now. He's probably thikning about running for the hills and burrowing into a green field where no one can see him. Not like there's a green field in New York for a range of fifty miles, but the thought counts!

Instead, he gets a sharp rap on the glass from the back of a woman's knuckles. Leather coat, corset, black leggings make Wanda a sight that holds very little relief. Angels of mercy have flying nun wimples, maybe SHIELD logos. (While she has a SHIELD logo, she's going to be rightly identified as the wetworks squad lieutenant.)

All Wanda's got going for her under the 'helpful' column is her age. She looks young. Not so scary unless the byproduct of Nazi death camps, genetic splicing, malicious mountains and twenty years on the run as children of the revolution is freaky. Righto.

The driver might want to roll the window down, run out the other side and flee for the Brooklyn tunnel. Maybe he bawls.

She scowls. "Your driving is for the shit." Judgment is not spared.

Vic sniffs, and he nods a little. He musters a smile through the pain as his father looks his way. "I hope I get to see her." Oh how he loves his mother. It's just as well he's in love with a nice young man, because no woman could hope to measure up to her in his eyes.

"Dad?" he asks, the doomful question on his lips, "What happened?"

He shifts a little as hop bones come back together. "I had baklava for Mom, and then I was waking up with broken bones."

The man starts, at first fearing it's his wife. The young woman he sees instead is unsettling. Some prey have a nose for predators. Something in his hind brain screams danger. He does glance at the opposite door, but his dark deed has doomed him; the door got the kid on a bounce and now it's too damaged to open. He tries.

His escape thwarted, finally the man unrolls his window, blinking away tears and pointedly ignoring the fact his face is red and puffy. He sniffs, then asks in a trembling voice, "Can I help you?"

He can sense at distance that she's located whomever sat behind the wheel of the truck that mowed down his son. A breath of life dances down the line of the soulbond, tickling about her aura and briefly washing it in celestine swirls. I trust you.

"You will." Vic might have gotten a brief impression of those frosted-violet eyes looking beyond him, but they focus completely on him once more. "She is my sword hand. She'll return soon enough." The tea needs a minute or two more to steep, so Strange makes himself busy with bringing over one of the pillowed chairs tucked as well to another wall and then a small table. He'll settle in and keep watch deep into the night if need be. Thus, Vic doesn't get an immediate answer to his question.

With back turned, the good Doctor attempts to put together the least traumatizing answer he can give, for both of their sakes as he collects the tea cups. They make soft clunks for being set on the table and his rattles on the saucer for a passing second as nerves spike and recede. A soft groan as he sits in the chair and blows the steam from his drink.

"You stepped into the street and were hit by a truck." Well…it's the truth and the delivery in flawless serenity even if he has a hard time swallowing that first mouthful of tea.

Hi, predator pretending to be a helpful citizen. American Samaritan Wanda is not. Her lengthening mouth stamps flat to a dull sheen of sandstone rather than its typical worn bronze. Those cold eyes muster all the force given to a gypsy witch crossbred with a demon and the man with the finest cheekbones in all Slavic Europe except maybe Pietro. Wanda hasn't much skill wielding her appearance for good, but intimidation is right there in the wheelhouse.


The reminder of a bitter lesson from adoptive family singes her bleak thoughts while she curls her hands into fists. "You drive bad. You look at this!" Her heavy accent slants more into the Slavic side of things rather than native Transian. It's probably more familiar if they weren't miles from Little Odessa.

"You hit things, «javra». City big, road so big. You get off your little seat and go on train. Sit there. Go to bus. Sit there. Go on side to street. Walk there. Get off road!" she barrages him with the rapid-fire shots of edged, piercing words at a salvo usually consistent with very angry, very irritable Poles or Russians. Her finger jabs to emphasize, further underscoring how displeased she is. "You think your mama like this? NO! She cry and pull shirt and say 'My boy is stupid as bag of rocks. My boy is shame for me. At home he ride his ox and fall down stairs too much.'"

Taking in a deep, heaving breath, she snaps her arms at her sides in an ungracious movement no one will ever call a flail. Tipping forward onto her toes, she stares him in the face. "Think! Big think on your life. Your mother wishes she was goose and not mother. You make her bad look, this thing of yours. GO AWAY ON YOUR FEET."

Vic nods to his father. Of course she is, Mother is a force of nature, beautiful like windswept trees in a hurricane. Vic's attempt to sit up enough to drink tea is helped along by the pillow, though he still winces as he gets settled. the leg is moving of its own volition. The bones are merely cracked now, allowing for the wiggling of toes. Though he stops because it hurts.

Vic gingerly reaches for his teacup. The leg bone's connected to the hip bone, which is connected to the spine bones, which are connected to the arm bone. Everything is complaining inside him. But he can manage holding a teacup and lifting it to his lips. He sighs softly, eyes lidding. Yes, tea makes everything better.

"A truck?" Vic sys. "Gosh, I'm lucky to be alive."

During the well-earned tongue-lashing the still-drunk man gets, he slips out of the truck and stands, a steadying hand on the door. "I… Now see here—" But she knows just where to strike, and it hits deep. His mama. The way she looked when she was visiting him in prison. How it aged her, how she wept. It leaves a twisting bundle of hurt in his gut, such is guilt and remnants of shame.

"I didn't mean to hurt anyone," he says with a slur in his voice. "I didn't see him. You can't tell the cops, I'll go back to prison." Blubbering, miserable, thinking he really ought to call his mom, but still can't own up. Because prison would kill him. Manslaughter? Yeah, his goose would be cooked.

"Yes. You are."

If there's anything that Vic's going to learn very quickly, it's that the bone-deep Midwestern propensity to not mince words has been bolstered by many, many months of laconic Eastern European witchery — and Strange has a habit of speaking curtly when under huge amounts of stress.

"I presume you're alive based on the existance of the Mote." He takes another sip of his tea, watching Vic to make sure he's still swallowing correctly and taking in the brew safely. It'd be a shame to aspirate anything with those fractured ribs still healing.

"This is why feet! Feet for the walk. Feet for the bus or the train. It is safe to you and your.. your…" What is van in English, anyways? Truck? Wanda scowls at it hard enough to peel the paint off as that, too, tries to make a run for the gutter under the burning weight of extremely potent anger turned to a sharp point. For now she hasn't gotten out of control because Pietro's absurdity so much informs her own.

Her nose wrinkles. "Is stupid car. All broken. Get you away to your mama, tell her you are ox-head." And that is enough for her as she storms down the street, flipping the bird at a passing pigeon cooing nonsense words at itself. The translation is probably 'acorn cap' over and over, because stupid fucking pigeons.

She has a long walk.

"The… me?" asks the embodied mote. His brow knits, and he takes another drink of his tea. "Before I woke up," he says quietly, "everything was bright and radiant. It was warm, and I felt like it was time to rest, like after a really long day when you've been working hard?" He smiles a little, wistful.

Of course life would pull him back from some sweet heaven. Where else would the youth go? Or maybe that's just the nature of the energy that composes him, after all, he didn't go anywhere. He never left his body. Maybe he can't.

Vic sips carefully. His lungs are still cross with him for all the blood in them, blood reabsorbed and cleansed within him. "I'm so glad to see you," he says quietly. "It felt nice to be warm and painless, but I'm not done yet." Gods help the youth should the day ever come when he is.

The man stares at Wanda. Who is she? Where did she come from? Is she real? He's not drunk-hallucinating, is he? Is that even a thing? So much confusion it keeps him silent, blinking owlishly.

Finally, he decides she must be some sort of angel of… something. Mercy? Not hardly. He bobs his head at her and sniffles again, miserable. "I gotta call my mom," he says, his voice wavering. "I gotta see how she's doing." He looks at his truck. It barely made it home. Besides, the vengeful angel is watching, so he adds, "I'll take the subway when I go see her."

He heads toward his house, where a woman in curlers stands on the porch, a rolling pin in hand. "Drunk again? Who's the floozy you're running around with? What's the matter, Al, not going to invite her in?"

As he's being dragged into the house by his ear, the man marvels, "You can see her, too?"

Strange can't meet his son's eyes. Instead, he closes them and drops his chin every so slightly.

«Beloved». Did you find him? A moment spent sending the question and then he speaks quietly. "They say near-death experiences can show us things like that. The physiological sensations vary between person to person." A sigh and he rubs at one temple in resistance against the encroaching headache he's been desperately trying to ignore for the last hour. "You won't ever be done, I think." He opens his eyes again and there's that weariness he's been trying to hide, that sense of old bruising and spiritual ache.

She's not going to have anything to do with the man who nearly ended… something. What it is, Wanda has not parsed. Her walk takes her through the borough, and by this point, Strange may as well fling a doorway beckoning into the otherworld at her. This way!

Not that a floating red arrow would be worth anything. She needs a honey jar and instant energy obtained through some kind of ridiculously sweet pastry stuffed by buttercream and fruit. In lieu of that she will take her chances, walking along past the closed shops. The angel of vengeance.

Angel of bitterness, more likely.

He was told his fate. Right, and rules of the road and vehicle selection. The boy, and him? I am not having any thoughts about the man. It could spell murder.

Vic watches his father, head tilted slightly as he tries to puzzle out each shift of expression and every word. "I'm glad," he says. "I don't want to be done. Not like this. I just got accepted into school with Kellan and Kaleb. It's upstate, but we'll commute. I don't want to be too far away from my folks." If that make shim a mama's boy, so be it!

He takes another sip of tea, working his way through the cup, and he does seem to be helping. His color has returned more fully. In subtle ways, he's more animated, perking up a bit. "I'm sorry, Dad. I didn't mean to upset you or Mom. I'll be more careful next time."

The man is going to have one hell of a night, and between wife and mother, he'll suffer. Oh, he'll suffer. The police aren't half so inventive nor vengeful.

That distant look over Vic's shoulder is accompanied by Strange thinking back to his Consort. Vic is fine. Come home. Yes, home — and the sweet brush of ghostly lips to her temple can be felt in passing. Back to the present.

"Don't apologize. Just look both ways." He tries for a smile and somewhat succeeds, though the effort shows. "I'm glad to hear you were accepted. Where at?" Not that he's going to judge terribly much, perhaps pass on some words of wisdom. It's part and parcel of his mantle.

Mama's boy. Mama should be around. Eventually she will be but one doesn't cross New York in ten minutes. More like half an hour to an hour on foot even if she cuts off time by winnowing through the shadowy patches in alleyways to other shadowy alleyways.

It's not the Witch Road but it will do.

Somewhere her anger is cutting brilliantly fast and hot. It lurks in her frozen blood and in the bottom of her stomach, a pit locked up. Pietro, wherever he is, will be eating twinkies by the handful to alleviate his case of heartburn.

Stupid bad car. The only thing that goes through the link. Oh, she's on her way.

Vic purses his lips. Sure, it's super secret, but this is his dad, and Vic isn't going to start keeping secrets. "Xavier's Institute for the Gifted. It's super secret, though. No one's supposed to know, but you're m dad." No secrets from Mom and Dad.

And Mom? Mom is in his heart and mind. Oh, when she does return, he will be so overjoyed. There might be more watery tears to blink away. But even when she's not there, she's with him. It's ridiculous, how much this child adores his parents.

"Do you know about this school?" he asks dear old Dad. Maybe not so old, all things considered. Vic assumes Dad does. Dad knows everything. This is a fact. But it never hurts to ask just in case.

I do dislike cars, comes the faint rejoinder, complete with the kind of flat, silvery irony that only many years of acceptance can tarnish.

"Your mother will be home shortly." A mouth-wetting sip of tea slides slowly down to warm and settle his stomach. What a blessing that the herbal also combats acid reflux — poor Pietro for not having such a thing available to him. "I know of Xavier's school. He's a good man. I've known him for many years. He helped my first apprentice become used to living in modern society." A flick-up and settling of brows. "You'll be in good hands."

Vic perks up visibly at the mention of Mother coming home. It's a reaction a certain drunk man getting an earful from his wife at this very moment would not be able to relate to. He'll have nightmares about Wanda. "I'll try to stay awake for her," he says. Fat chance, but he'll try.

Vic exhales relief and a warm grin when he says, "Oh good. If you approve of it, then it'll be a good school. Even though I'm not a mutant, he said I could study there. Kellan and I are already ahead on the reading. Kaleb's been going through a rough time, but he's plenty smart."

Out of the blue, he asks, "Dad, do you think I died?"

No matter if the youth falls asleep in the waiting. For what the Sorcerer can sense across the diamond-weave line of the soulbond, Mother won't be settled for some time still. He fully expects to feel the rapid release of snapping emotions and still, he trusts the Witch to choose wisely as to the target. Or targets. Whatever malingering nonsense is nearest to her wrath.

And then there's that question. Strange takes a moment to scratch at one silvered temple at the itch that doesn't exist and then shift in his chair to resettle a booted ankle on the opposite knee now and then finish off his tea in one big gulp. The demitasse clatters lightly on the saucer as he sets it down and only then, after eyeing Vic for another few seconds, he rolls his lips inwards.

"I'm uncertain." That looks like it hurt to say, for multiple reasons. "Medically, yes. Mystically, no. Lady Death wouldn't have taken you regardless." A statement of fact, that.

Vic sits with that knowledge for a time. Medically yes, Mystically, no. "What if I can't die?" he says. "At least not medically?" He looks to Strange. No pressure having those blue eyes so like his own resting upon him with such trust. Even when Dad is uncertain, he has theories. It counts

"I think," he says, "I would prefer not to test it. This…" He gestures at his mending body, "hurts." He finishes his tea, and he holds the cup, gazing into it as though to read the leaves. "I guess I'll just have to get used to being Victor Jameson Delano for the long haul. At least it's a nice name."

The Sorcerer isn't quite sure how to approach the infinity that is being relatively immortal, so he just leaves that beehive undisturbed for now. It's hard enough living in such a state himself, even if it's some twisted take that Tolkien would appreciate immensely. The potential for losing his goddamn mind after a thousand years is — not thinking about it, nope. Nope nope nope.

Those expressive brows rise up at that middle name, however, and he becomes still in his chair. No longer fidgeting, it's the scholarly squint for Vic, the one that makes Billy squirm.

"Jameson." That name takes priority abruptly. Wait a second. Those blues. That jawline. The hair. NO. Strange pinches at the top of his nose, eyes shut, and then murmurs, "Your mother. Helen?" It's a total shot in the dark, but…Fate just loves to toy with this man's life.

Vic regards Strange under that scholarly squint like an open book. Not that it's a comfortable look, no no. But after the day Vic's had? And how much Dad has done for him? He just rests. He's supposed to be resting. Too tired to squirm. That's tired.

Vic's brows lift though when he hears Strange speak OldVic's mother's name. "Yeah, Helen Jameson. I was named after her cousin and her maiden name." Fate's not done with you, Strange. Fate is never, ever done.


The groan is grinding its way to becoming a vicious, hissing curse when Strange abruptly rises to his feet. His face appears from behind hands because they ball at his sides. A few steps away and then he turns again, nearly crackling with Mystical energy again. It settles within one cycle of his breathing, but leaves behind the taste of metal in the mouth and the scent of ozone. Perfectly safe, rest assured, anyone within the Sanctum. The silver-slip of the wards appear from nowhere, a stole of semi-sentient spells about his shoulders, and he further calms himself.

"You're — no, your host body, Vic. Helen is my cousin." Present tense, not past tense. No more past tense, not right now, not with another confirmation of bloodlines to the man himself lying on that chaise lounge.

Give the youth a moment. He's had a long, hard day, and while he's out of the woods, there's still a lot of proverbial bark and twigs clinging to him. When he finally does sleep, it's going to be for about sixteen hours. So one might understand if he peers at Strange, daunted by his father's reaction. Is… Is Dad Victor?

No, that makes no sense, his dad is Stephen. Rather than overthink it, Vic instead says, "I thought I was going crazy seeing the resemblance. Like it was wishful thinking."

Then it hits him, the heaviness of it all. Vic, who longed so much for a real family, had one. Has one. "Wow," he whispers. "We're related."

With the map of red lines across his hand, Strange stops up his mouth even as he stands there, staring at the child of his missing cousin. They never did figure out where Helen got off to, in the end, even after all of the correspondance between his mother and his aunt — not that Stephen paid much attention. He was far too busy preparing for entrance exams to medical school and already well on his way to becoming neurosurgeon supreme.

Finally, the hand drops to hover out before him, some unconscious and exasperated gesture. Eye rise to the ceiling and he mouths some prayer for sanity to the threefold deities before turning those steely-blues on Vic again.

"Yes, it appears so. I suspected that it was the Mote projecting elements of my own corporeal form, but…gods below, it has to be genetic sympathy." He slowly shakes his head. "Blood will out…" The statement is faint, weary in a way.

Vic watches Strange intently, but there's a blankness in his eyes, not seeing the ramifications or the complexities within the weaving of Fate. He just sees that he's even more family to his family than he previously thought. Just knowing that is worth dying and coming back again.

"It makes sense," he says. "I know I was drawn to this vessel like a magnet. I thought it was because the conditions were adequate to house me, but it was a stronger pull than that." He looks down at the poor, abused vessel that has knitted itself together to a degree where he can sit up and not fall over.

"Yes." All he can do is nod and take in the details of his son's face via a new facet. Yes, Victor always did take after their aunt in zygomatic crests and in the cant of his brows. Hair color, yes, darker than what curls on the youth's head, but still, that same loose wave. The Strange blues, however…those carried true.

A short sigh and thinning of lips. "I'll be damned." Will he? Only time will tell.

Vic smiles softly, and he says, "It's just more good news, Dad. Maybe not great because my mom passed, but you know where she ended up, and she had me." He says that so happily. The original Victor never felt half so great about being born, but to the mote, it's great! This is a creature who forewent untold cosmic power for ice cream and walks on the beach.

Speaking of, he says, "I should let Kellan know where I'll be tonight. He'll be worried." His eyelids start drooping. All that power expenditure is starting to catch up with him. Soon, the sleep that comes upon him won't be wakeable until he's done. But he'll be breathing, so no worries there.

"Not until the morning." And that's Dad putting his foot down, never mind the still-incoming Mother who would advise the same in her clipped cadence. Walking back over, Strange retrieves the empty cup from the still-bloodied hands and takes another moment to look Vic over with medicine's lenses.

Recovery, slow but assured. Color, good. Breathing, stable. Pulse, present. Another influx of that spring-sky healing magic after he wakes and the youth could possibly be good as new.

"Sleep for now. What's the phone number?" Easy enough to remember the digits and the rotary phone isn't far at all, just on an opposite wall of the Loft. Vic can probably hear most of the conversation, including "This is his father." — followed by, "He'll be home once he wakes again." A beat. "Yes, he's fine." And then the growl. "As a doctor, I refuse to release him from my care until otherwise noted. As his father, I expect you to respect my decision in the matter." Another beat. "Yes, good night." Click.

"Kellan is aware of current standings," announces Strange quietly as he walks back over, arms folded tightly as he looks down at Vic. "Still…that won't do." A click of his fingers, spoken Words, and the scouring spell rushes from the youth's head to his toes. Dried blood overtop closed wounds is erased and what might have stained clothing is gone. All that's left are the tears to bear witness to the collision and what manner of healing is still be done via the Mote's brilliance. "Sleep." The paternal inflexibility is softened by the relief in the good Doctor's steely-blues.

Vic rattles off the number. It's his home number. Did he mention he was living with his boyfriend? He doesn't try to withhold information, it's just that some things have happened so naturally he hasn't thought to mention. His eyes drift closed, and he smiles softly to himself to hear his gruff father's voice.

When the scouring comes, he squirms a little, because having things lifting away and departing from his skin feels strange, but oh how much better he feels once he's clean again. He turns to his uninjured side and curls up, his features sweet as an angel's. "Thanks, Dad," he murmurs, "Love you." Within a moment, he's fast asleep.

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