1964-12-28 - Yes, But Will It Blend?
Summary: Maximus has set to trying to develop a machine that will send subliminal signals to help detect Skrulls. Will it also scramble the minds of everyone in Times Square remains to be seen.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
maximus kaleb 

It wasn't log at all into the holiday break that Kaleb brought Maximus to meet with jean in her office to increase potential solutions moving forward to deal with Skrull identification, and worse, what Kaleb ought buy his mother for Christmas. The latter proving oddly the more difficult. Still Maximus Boltagon, genius inventor at large, had an idea and had almost instantly started contriving how to make a ..thing… do the thing they wanted it to do.

Echo followed Max back to his apartment to do things like translate to the help what his intentions were and to make sure any good help didn't wind up as test subjects. He also tried to remind Max to do things like eat and, well, sleep. Having crashed on teh couch he shoved the knit blanket off his face and checked for electrodes stuck to him. Nope. Good. It was safe to move though he did also check the floor before putting his feet down. "Max?" His voice carried through the penthouse less as a question and more as in indicator of hey, I'm here. I'm up. Are you ok? In this case all was wrapped into a monosyllabic address.

"If by OK, you mean, have I created wondrous things while you have slept, and increased the audio variables to /well beyond/ human range…and did I possibly make some birds uncomfortable? Then. Yes. I did some work." Maximus is nearby, and much like the slumbering Briar Rose…THINGS have grown like vines around the palace. In this case, its machinery. Some of it is tossed off extra bits, but others do seem to have some sort of function. Roughs. Drafts. Miniature versions of the larger thing in progress. While they'll still be able to HOLD it, it'll be pretty obvious. He also seems to have taken the idea of making it also seem super scary, because there are angular protrusions which probably serve some sort of amplifying purpose, but also make it look like something straight out of Sci-Fi. And it looks like a weapon. Even though it isn't. "We need a Skrull though. Tic Tick tick…times moving along and the Kree are just sitting around." Manic as he gets, there's a few grease smudges about his face, and he's taken off his shoes.

Kaleb was wide awake and just looking at the 'progress' made like a mechanical kingdom. His lips actually moved as he murmured, awed and impressed… perhaps a tad concerned. "Woah. How'd I sleep through a chunk of thi- wait you tested it already? I told you to wake me up in case you," His hand flapped. Words and he were not friends, and he didn't dare accuse his equal of weakness either. Not while he had a screwdriver on hand. "took issue with the frequency. You alright?" Most important question, though now he was curious and he looked to the window itching his ear, "Are the birds okay? Did they blow up? Have we moved to human testing yet? Did you eat in the last six hours?"

"I have not eaten. And I did not exactly test it. Not the way it needs to be tested. I was just making sure that the frequency could be tuned very high and…whatever it was, the birds could hear it. It didn't bother me at all." Maximus makes a little twist of the tool in his hand and the giant object makes a soft pooooooooooooeeeeeeeeee sound. Maximus grunts. "They left, did not explode, unless they exploded later." Max seems…/unconcerned/. He then flashes a grin with his eyes lit with that spark of maddened creativity. "At least…it probably does what we want it to do."

A great many people in world might be concerned by this news, but those people weren't Kaleb miller either. Echo pushed himself to a stand and walked over to the shoeless inventor and thought idly that it wouldn't be inappropriate for Max's sparks of genius to actually spark like a cartoon robot. The tired Mutant grinned rubbing one eye with the palm of his hand before shoving his hair back out of his face. Here he didn't actually feel the need to be painstakingly put together. He was certain Max would judge him on other things, not this, but things of actual import. His hand lifted to Max's face to thumb the smudge but as it was grease and not dirt only made it vaguely worse and was now coming with him. That was… yeah unexpected. C'mon. Let's get you something to eat while we talk about where to take testing next. This is… neat actually. I never really helped come up with a 'thing' before."

"Not just helped. Without you, it will not even function. Well, not at first anyway. I will need you to put it through so many frequencies, rapidly, when we truly test it." Max leans in to the touch, then exhales. "Is it strange that I partly wished to create a freezing chamber to freeze you, perfectly asleep, so that I could always preserve such a moment?" Max probably just needs a /camera/.

Kaleb arched an eyebrow and left his hand to linger a moment before motioning for Max to follow him to the kitchen. Did he know how kitchens actually operated? well… no. But it's where food was supposed to be born. "Well… get me a blanket at least." A wry grin crept to his face, "Such a moment as in peace and quiet?" The irony of that statement not lost on he that kept muting the world. "I'll ahve to introduce you to polaroids. First food. And coffee. We have coffee or did you use it to fuel something?" It was plausible in its entirety, or at least he wouldn't put it past Maximus to find a way to make that work. "Hey, I'm proud of you. Good job on phase one. So Phase two we bust out the helmet and a spectrum analyzer and we tweak it? Doesn't sound too bad. Were we going to do this here or we want to go to a sound studio? Beeecause windows." His voice drifted off and he pointed vaguely that-a-way still with some disappointment that he broke several of them. He replaced them, but he broke them.

Maximus has not touched the kitchen, so…all the stuff that should be in there, is in there. Though, not all the knives are in the right spot. The cook seems to have stashed them about the kitchen in various places, probably just to feel better. Maximus follows Kaleb in there, watching him with such curiosity over what Kaleb is going to attempt to DO in here. He knows the man's skill set. "Oh…that phase two sounds much safer than what I was going to do. I thought it would be easier to just…drag it out to a building at Time's Square and start firing it at the crowd, trying different variating frequencies until we find a Skrull."

Kaleb had skills…alll as far away from the kitchen as humanly possible. Still it was the need to do something. He stopped when he got to the kitchen. For all of his brilliance in math and architecture the lad was lost. He blinked with a quiet humm of static around him and ah, fridge. It was as good place to start as any. "So long as it's not Rockefeller Plaza. That poor tree's seen enough. Also it'd continue to kill property values over time and that's… not alright. Still that might be phase three once we know what we're looking for I mean," The Mutant boggled to Maximus and didn't expect staunch support for his reasoning, "It's cold. How long do we want to be jsut standing out in teh cold listening to people bitching and screaming?" Not exactly altruistic, but he still had some good points raised.

Maximus clicks his tongue a few times. "You know sometimes…I just heat things up 30 seconds at a time until its right." He offers a potential solution to their problem. "I hear you about the cold, though, it doesn't bother me as much. THIS, I'm used to. But…the screaming would get annoying. I suppose they'd think we were trying to harm them…the humans that is." He exhales at the practical point of not terrorizing the public.

Kaleb looked around and opened the fridge, closed it and thought a moment and then opened it again just…staring. "Max half this food is broken. None of this looks like a sandwich at all." He took a deep rbeath and looked to his partner considering, "I heard it's like this for Captain America too; saving people and nearly never getting a thank you. I mean sure, go get eaten by Skrull or they can take one for the team." He sighed, the singed crust around his soul hurt. "They're so… selfish. It's really not helping, but best that we identify that hurdle now rather than be surprised by it later." The fridge closed and he went to the phone dialing by memory. "I'm cooking for you. Hang tight. This will be sorted in a moment." And by he was cooking he meant, dear god, I'm making the help do things and taking credit for this as its catalyst. Yes, today it was Italian. Why? because he wanted lasagne and a really good salad.

Maximus opened the fridge and pulled out what appeared to be moldy carrots. Just a mild glazing of mold. "I think these are…fine…if you were to wash them. Are you calling a person? I do not wish for any other person to set foot in this place right now. Just you. This is MY area and its a complete mess and I am fairly certain that I did change clothes and left them somewhere, which means there is a pair of underwear around /somewhere/ as a surprise, and sleep pants." Maximus pauses, sounding terribly domestic. "Oh by the Kree…I just want to kiss your face off…then see if I can make love to you before whatever you are doing shows up." He's probably hungry. Hungry and horny makes…horngry?

Kaleb blinked at the carrots and squint thoughtfully at them. "Ya know, I took biology class and I think I can say that may not be entirely quantifiable as a vegatable anymore." Max's fuzzing over the sanctity of his creative space warmed laugh from teh Mutant usually reserved for only closest of company. Fingers combed his hair back from his face where it hung undone and so much more reminiscent of his twin than himself. "Well ya changed so I mean that's improvement. Don't… don't worry Max, they're coming here, downstairs and I'lll go grab it and bring it up." An…errand? He chalked this up to assisting a creative provess and not manual labour. One hand relieved Max of the carrots, the other patted Max's smudgy cheek. "I'm sure you can, but a rush job?" He squint a qestioning look at him, "Food'll be here 40 min to an hour. Could." He wasn't a creature of contact, and the small gestures were left to carrying he weight of being of great importance to Kaleb as his thumb brushed over Max's cheek asking all of the other questions like 'what do you need? Are you okay? and I'm still with you'. Finally he kissed him and tried to just chuck the once-carrots in teh trash with a ka-toonk. "Hey, I'm proud of you. You got a ton done."

Maximus arches his black brows and blinks at Kaleb after the kiss. "What is this? What did you do? Did you do something while I was working? Or are you immitating some…supportive mom off the television?" Maximus cracks a grin. "40 minutes isn't a rush job. That's…admirable enough. I am not speaking of a worshipping evening affair, but," he flexes his hands, "a raucous one." He walks his fingers up Kaleb's chest and then chuckles.

Kaleb was slightly admonished and squint defending his choice of 'looking after'. He squint a wary look and said, "I saw it in a movie. Seemed to work out well. I am happy to go back to being an imperious ass though." Blue eyes rolled ceilingward in thought and finally ne nodded. "Well… the food will wait downstairs either way. I can work with 40 minutes." The grin returned with a shrug and decided to play up being heckled as 'tv mom' mode, grabbed a nearby napkin, licked it, and made the vain attempt to degrease Max's cheek with it with a laugh. "Remmeber you started this!"

Maximus chuckles. "I love it. I love all of it." Emphasis on all. "You know…best to forget I said that because when I'm feeling less accomplished, that's probably the only phrase that will save humanity." He grins overbroadly and then reaches out to grab Kaleb's shirt while the man cleans him off.

35 minutes later, Max panted and fell limply to the couch. "Ohhh…fuck standing…is there food?"

Echo knew that statement was more true than anyone might ever realize. To the world: You are welcome, but really, he didn't do it for them. He did this for Max, for his lucidity, and for himself.

Some 42 minutes later

The phone rang and Kaleb was still getting dressed when he answered it. "Mmhmm, coming down." He finished toweling off his hair, "Food's here. I'll grab it and come right back." Because when Maximus was still half in build-things mode, it was always good to be specific so his mind didn't parade of fabulously like a parade captioned by his anxieties. It wasn't hard to do and frankly he didn't get where other people didn't get that. A smooch later and he slipped out the door pulling his buttons together. There. He didn't have a vest but it would have to do. From top floor to the bottom he managed to put his dispassionate business face back on as to not alarm people. Finally he returned with the elevator gate sliding open. "Been thinking where we could try out the device, I hate to say it but Rockefeller has good acoustics but Times Square on New Year's Eve… could be tragically useful for us. We will likely ruin the event though. Something to think about."

"I care not about this New Year. The New Year that I am used to celebrating is not for another couple weeks. And, if we go over to the Chinese District, I am certain there will be a parade and everything." Maximus chuckles. "We will only ruin the event for Skrulls. It will be dark. People will be distracted. Its the perfect opportunity." Maximus agrees. He's moved, a little, while Kaleb was downstairs. Likely some cleaning efforts made. He's in a robe now. "If someone like…all the Avengers show up, then that could ruin the event."

Kaleb considered this and grinned swtting the lasagna down. When a guy named Big Tony says it's good you know it's good. Kaleb had no regrets about trusting that man's kitchen already. "Well if they do, then all the better?" He paused and looked Max down then up again. Time… yeah time to focus. "I mean we expose the Skrull they're liable to start shit. Need to have a plan in place to catch the fallout. Might even just reach out to them to say hey, ya know, big events haven't gone very well in teh past, might want to look at this. Truthfully we should let Jean make that call. She might even have her own solution like brain nuke them from orbit or something."

Maximus wets his lips and wags his finger at Kaleb. "This is a good point. It might be time to meet with Jean again…so we can have some…/support/, should things go poorly in the crowd. A mortal crowd, I can somewhat manage, though it never looks good." He rolls his eyes and wiggles his fingers when he sees the lasagna. Its enough to get him off his butt, and towards the actual dining chairs. "I do not mind talking to them. It just seems like no one trusts me to do that." He grins crookedly.

Kaleb waved the fork around in gesticulation towards himselv, "I don't mind. I htink being able to influence the masses is an attractive quality myself. Shows… competency and strength of character." That said he wasn't opposed to framing their ideas in such a way that they'd sell better to other groups involved while still moving forward. He was used to facilitating concepts with emotionally charged parties. How he became Kaleb the Negotiator though he'll never know. "Good lord they gave us a half loaf of garlic bread. They must really want our business. Well played."

Maximus arches his brows at the latter comment, "Oh…interesting. Large amounts of flavored bread as a bribe? Next time, ask if they will come cook for us in person." He chuckles…ahh the idea of ordering peons around. "It is you who has the silver tongue. You know you do things that you may be unaware of, little…timbres in your voice that can have an effect, a charming one most of the time for me. But perhaps to the saviors of lasagna as well. Thank you /so much/ for cooking for me. I will be sure to brag about it later at your house." He winks.

Kaleb says, "held up his fork and knive in exasperation, "You said no people!" Echo took a breatha nd added, "Though I assume by 'next time' it won't be while we are working on clandestine world saving machinery. but really, when are you not?" More a flattery than a factoid. Still, frustrations and ego were abated when the complimentary enhacement of many truths came upon him. "This? This is why I love you. You get it. I'm pretty certain everyone else just calls it me being bossy. But yes, next time I will do this. And when we get back to my place? You will absolutely tell them I cooked. It'll absolutely confuse the hell out of them.""

"It will. They will be so confused. And I was…jesting, overreaching. YOu know this. I like to…wonder about how far you can push a person. I should try not to push /you/, though. I'm sorry." Max takes a bite of lasagna immediately afterwards. "I know I am trouble. So…when do we find out more about what your family is up to? We have the Skrull testing tomorrow night…but after that. I am pretty free." He takes another bite and seems amused. Planning their shenanigans is amazing.

Kaleb blinked and blinked again. That… that was an earnest apology. He jotted that down in his longterm memory where important things go. That was a damn gift right there. It jsut wasn't in their nature to idly do. His tongue ran along his bottom lip thoughtfully before another bite of lasagna went into his face. Ambiently his voice echoed around him to respond, "I wonder how far I can too. Actually wondering about distance and relay. Can't really do as much over mechanical relay. Too much is lost in the signal… I think. THough," he paused and nodded as if agreeing with his thoughts, "I appreciate the encouragement. It's come in handy from time to time to make people stop doing treacherous things I just don't care for them doing. I mean…well you get it." For all of the good and bad implications society might say, but he knew Maximus certainly understood hainvg used it to save his life and also to make politicians look stupid. Splendid application in both cases.

"I do get it. Its not a good feeling to have things…hanging, left uncertain. It is a matter we should resolve in some form or another, even if we cannot do it all at once. I am here to help, for every reason. Family, is important. And sometimes you have to correct what family is doing." Maximus helps himself to a few more bites. "As for your power…do not undersell yourself on this. And the device will take care of most of the range. Its you who has to tune it, adjust it up and down, until we find what harms them."

Kaleb twirled his fork in his fingers and then it stilled. He took Max's words to heart and they weren't wrong. How they might be employed varied widely, but he wasn't wrong. His take away was still what always ganwed at him always and his agreement came in the form of a nearly non-sequitor response, "We're not monsters." It was a stigma they both shouldered from being able to do such things. Still the words steeled his confidence, not that he was one to ever let self doubt surface, but he was rather critical of himself by nature to constantly improve. Taking a deep breath there was a pause and an affirmation, "Yeah. I'll do it. I'll figure out how and we'll make it so we can automate that part as a failsafe, or whatever we're doing. We'll figure out how."

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