1965-01-02 - Dinner for two
Summary: Able and Jean have dinner and discuss training for the others.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
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jean-grey able 

Able has organized a surprise. Or an ambush, depending on how a person looks at it. There's a tray of fruits and vegetables on his desk in the medbay, both grilled and raw, along with a loaf of fresh landbrot. It's a German peasant bread that he's personally baked with no animal products involved.

Presently, he's seated on the floor with his eyes locked on a candle's flame. He's spoken with Jean through their link before, but he's never been the one to initiate it from scratch. For most people it probably wouldn't be too difficult, but he isn't most people. His brain is different; establishing a psychic link from his end is much more difficult, even with a preexisting bond. So he meditates and centers himself to prepare.

Once his mind is clear and devoid of other thoughts and distractions, he reaches out to her. ~Jean?~ he sends. It's not easy, but focusing so tightly helps. ~Jean, will you please join me in the infirmary?~

Busy busy busy. The children were slowly filtering in, but it was late and most of them haven't begun to even unpack. The teachers were all in the hall, shaking hands and giving hugs to the young ones, speaking to parents as Jean stood by her own doorway watching. A couple and a single parent gang up upon the redhead, who offers up great smiles and cheers. A quiet conversation over the break and plans, and how did Jean appreciate the bundle of apples that she had gotten?

Pies. They were put into pies.

Hugs were offered, and thankfully that the parents were on their way, for the loud knocking of Able nearly caused her a nosebleed, her head jerking slightly and hands lifting to quickly press against her temple. It must be urgent.

~On my way.~

"Please excuse me. And, children! Re-clean the rooms!" She calls out, then quickly makes her way towards the infirmary, already unbuttoning her suit jacket, along with a hop-skip-run into taking off her shoes and dashing down. Once there? She doesn't knock, she just opens the door and..


By the time she arrives, Able is standing and leaning against his desk. Sending even a simple message without her assistance was taxing, to say the least. One hand is tucked in the pocket of his slacks, the other gestures to the spread he's prepared. "I didn't mean to alarm you. You told me we could share a meal. I thought now would be a good time."

He's prepared accordingly. There are napkins and utensils on either side of his desk and a chair already pulled out for Jean. As soon as he realized she was en route, he doused the candle and tucked it away.

Now the doctor seems a bit abashed. "My apologies, I didn't mean for you to drop everything. I just…" he gestures helplessly to the meal. His social skills are less than refined. "I just wanted to… Feed you?"

Tense shoulders were already up there, but seeing.. nothing was a miss, she lets out a sigh. "Oh.. geez.." She says quietly, finally stepping in completely to close the door. "I admit I was hoping something -did- happen, not to you but.. this is a good excuse as any to get away from the crowd upstairs." She smiles a little, though a little daunted about the actual act of eating, but the spread itself looked good. Still, holding her coat and barefoot, Jean steps in and tosses her coat and shoes upon the medical bed, her hands already tugging her shirt out of her skirt and unbuttoning the top to not feel too stiff.

She didn't want to say that she wasn't hungry.. but.. there was a slight inward wince at the fact that she -does- need to eat. And she promised. She was getting too thin for worry. "No injections first? Quick check up? Or is this just a friendly dinner?"

"Just dinner," Able confirms. He smiles crookedly and takes a seat at the business end of his desk. "But even that is a pretense. I won't be offended if all you do is nibble."

That said, he cuts a few neat slices from the loaf of bread and takes one for himself, along with a bit of roasted carrot and a slice of fresh mango. In and of itself, a mango in January would be cause for celebration. "Seems like I startled you and rescued you at the same time," he observes.

Hopefully he wouldn't be offended if she didn't eat at all, but the effort was there on his part, so she.. almost felt like she didn't have a choice in the matter. "Dinner." She states, finally moving towards the desk to settle in, her hands folding into her lap as she stares at her empty plate. A hand reaches up to scratch at her temple, but with a little shrug, she carefully picks up a fork and begins to lightly piece away fruit and veg upon her plate.

"Oh yes. School starts back tomorrow. Most of the parents were there, getting their kids settled and talking to the faculty about this coming semesters courses. I know a few of the parents were asking for extra credit work for the children and tutoring services that we can probably offer. And some of the sophomores are ready to start their volunteering sign-ups process for this summer." As she speaks, she carefully cuts her fruit and veggies into slices where she was able. She didn't touch the bread yet.

"All in all, I figure it's going to be a busy time of the year for me. Though I'm considering stepping down."

"Don't. Step down, I mean. I haven't been here long, but I can already tell the school wouldn't run smoothly without you." Able clears his throat, then shrugs one shoulder and pulls something from his pocket. It's a rectangular box complete with ribbon, similar to what you'd get when purchasing a necklace or bracelet around the holidays. "I understand that gifts are a part of the season. I know this one is coming a bit late, but it took me a while to design something this small."

He lifts the top from the box, revealing a device the size and shape of a business card that's around a half-inch thick. It's black with a red button set in the center. "It's for emergencies," he explains. "Twist the button clockwise and press it if you're in danger." He produces a similar unit of his own. "If you do, this will let me know. Not that you need my help, but still."

Jean lifts her eyebrows, then sighs. "That is where you're wrong." She states quietly, then picks up a little slice of the mango to sniff. Perhaps it was the first time she's ever had mango, but it takes her a moment to finally pop it into her mouth, chewing rather quickly, allowing the flavors to roll over her tongue as she spies the box, brows lifting and fork immediately dropped into the air. Which hangs.

"I…" She starts, leaning forward to carefully reach into the box to take the little device, rolling it into her fingers to examine it. It was.. admittedly a great gift! Unique and obviously -will- see some wear and tear. "..I didn't get you anything.. I'm sorry but.. this?" Her cheeks redden, and soon she shakes her head, immediately clasping it to her chest as she offers up a quiet thank you and a nod.

"You don't need to get me anything. You don't realize it, but you already have." Despite his words, there's a hint of blush on Able's cheeks as well. Tucking into a slice of mango is a great way to buy yourself time to think, so that's exactly what he does. It only buys so much time, though. "You're powerful," he finally says. "Stronger than any single being I've ever encountered, and that's saying something. There still may come a time when you need help. You offered as much to me. I'd like to be able to return the favor if you need me."

For all his proverbial footscuffing, it may as well be a piece of jewelry. The doctor shrugs one more time and pushes himself past the subject to a place where he'll feel more comfortable. Food. Though there's no butter for the bread, it's fresh enough that the loaf is still steaming where it was cut. He takes up his slice and bites into it. No one expects you to talk when you're chewing.

Jean shakes her head really quickly. "No, I mean.. not that one good turn deserves another, but you deserve to get stuff too." She smiles, still.. blushing, the little device tucked away beneath her shirt as she plucks her fork from the air to continue eating as well. She doesn't say anything about being powerful, in fact, she didn't think that much of herself at all. She barely even used them, even in fights..

"Oh, I'm always going to need you. Even if I get into a little bind." She states, matter-of-factly. "I have friends, and they each hold a different meaning. Scarlett is.. me. She's my life. I'd probably die for her a thousand times over and she me. I sometimes wouldn't dare go anywhere without her. And then there's Logan. He's like.. some weird version of an Uncle, a Brother, a Father and everything else in between. Charles is the Brother and you? You're something different. I don't know what yet but, I trust you. You'd be the first I could call on, would call on. If, that makes sense."

Now she was thinking about it, attempting to right her feelings on the matter. "Something.." She idly murmurs, finally poking another piece of fruit to put it into her mouth and chew. "..Oh! Got something to drink?"

It takes a few seconds for Able to meet Jean's eyes, and a few more for him to respond. Eventually, he swallows his mouthful. "It makes sense. I need you as well," he admits, the words coming slowly. "I trust you. That trust gives me a sense of peace and purpose."

For him, that admission was more difficult than telling her he was a clone and potentially less than a true person. Funny, how easy it was it admit the same to an old adversary earlier that day. He shifts in his seat and returns his attention to his roasted carrot, but he can't help glancing up at her. The request for a beverage is something of a blessing. He has a pitcher of orange juice, but there are no glasses. He's quiet as he stands to retrieve a pair of beakers from a cupboard so he can pour for them both.

Jean smiles quietly at that, not forgetting her request for something to drink, being blind to the orange juice that was already out and most of everything in the room. Still, quiet as ever, she munches away on her food, that moment of awkwardness settling in, with a dire need to flee from the room to get back to work. But.. no. She's got a present and he made her food, she was going to see this through.

"So.." She says quietly, finally clearing her throat before speaking up. "What do you think about teaching a very basic health class with a little bit of first aid? I know you're good at cleaning up scrapes, your bedside manner is impeccable.. I think they'd rather see you in a classroom under normal circumstances instead of when they're hurt."

Before they completely depart the subject, Able touches the back of Jean's hand with the tips of two fingers. It's brief, but for him it's a meaningful gesture.

Then he sits and it's as if it never happened. "I've already prepared a syllabus," he confirms. "I barely sleep, that leaves a lot of time to fill. It seemed like an appropriate use. I'd be willing to tutor more advanced students in medicine and the sciences as needed. It also looks like we could use some self-defense courses. I consider myself qualified." He doesn't often congratulate himself, but this statement is coupled with a small smile that isn't entirely undeserved.

The lingering touch was felt, and almost reacted to, but he moved away and she lets out a relieved sigh. Though for what? She wasn't too sure. But.. "Who's the telepath here?" Jean asks in a joking tone, but her face betrays it all before she breaks out into laughter.

"Yes to all. I know some of the children are already start to look at their college prospects. Giving them insight is a good thing." Though, her neck tenses, breath sucked in, and her head shakes. "I don't want to encourage self defense lessons -unless- they ask for it. I do appreciate the image that we're a school first who .. while we teach the children to control their gifts to give them the best chance at life, we shouldn't be ran like a bootcamp." She shrugs her shoulders a little, settling for the OJ instead of the food. "We already have the X-Men, I don't think we need to make a Legion out of us."

One doesn't have to be a telepath to sense Jean's reaction. Even without senses as keen as his, Able has been watching her closely enough. That's why he sets his plate aside and reaches out again. With a now-or-never sort of swiftness, he takes her hand. After a year of friendship it could be interpreted as a simple, companionable touch; it's little more than her palm resting on his.

He continues the conversation with no attention given to his actions. "Not to be indelicate, but some of the X-Men could use a few pointers as well. The better we fight, the less of you I'll see down here. I love what I do, but fewer injuries would suit me just fine."

Jean didn't really pull her hand from his as he took it, only curling her fingers against his and allowing the touch to linger for a few moments. Then, she slowly pulled her hand away, using the same one to settle upon her glass again for a sip.

"I agree. I can't say that I'm the best at combat, I'm getting better but.." She nods sharply. "..you're right. I don't want to be snappish and say do what you like, but it really is just.. do what you like, at least to keep everyone alive and in the best form possible."

Able withdraws both hands and folds them neatly in his lap. He nods as well, deferring to the edge her words and actions carry. "Very well," he says. "It was just an idea. I didn't mean to overstep."

The question is, what exactly is he referring to?

It seems like the meal is finished, so he starts clearing up, setting everything on the tray so it'll be easy to dispose of later. "I'm new here. I just want everyone to be safe. And happy."

"You aren't overstepping." Jean states quickly. "I'm just.. mostly worried about what the children may think when.. Here. Here is a way for you to be a weapon." She gestures as if she were putting a plate upon the table in front of her. "This is the way you can attack and fight to reach an end to the conflict -right- away instead of through peace first." She shakes her head slightly. "Like, I know there were so many times when I could have just ended a conflict. I don't use my powers when we're out most of the time. I use my fists, but first.. I do ask nicely.. which.. probably I shouldn't do but I do."

She nods, however, agreeing quietly. "I know. And they will be, that's why I'm not going to stop you." This time, it was her turn to reach for his hand, gripping tightly. "Just, know the lands first. Some things shouldn't be done on school grounds. Behind Logan's cabin, I would like to say at least a mile out? There's a clearing there you can use. Danger room, you can use that for the easy stuff. At your discretion, of course."

Surprised, Able stops what he's doing and leans back against the desk. Always taller than Jean, with her seated, now he towers over her. "I wouldn't want that for all the children," he says, his voice soft. "We have students who border on being adults. We have staff members who don't handle themselves as well as you or I. I'm not saying I want to give them guns, but it's good to know what to do if someone throws a punch."

It's a moment filled with mixed emotions. Able glances down at their hands, then back up at Jean's face. "I won't do anything without your blessing. I'm here because you invited me. I respect what you're doing and I want to help you do it better. That's all. Think on it. Later, you can tell me what you're comfortable with."

"I know it's good to know, and I know you're right. It's just that.. this life that we're trying to lead, it's not going to end well, for any of us at all." She lets his hand go, then sighs. "I've seen how I die a million times and a million different ways. Any other scenario I can think of, or have thought of, I've seen it. Maybe the deciding variable is that they are trained and I'm not alone. But, either way.." She shakes her head. "..the good die young."

"So, my mind is made up. I'm comfortable with it. Teach on and help them learn how to survive and not end up like we will."

"I will, but I'll use a measure of discretion." Now it's Able's turn to curl his fingers around Jean's before he lets her go. "I'm not very good at this, but I'm trying. I'm still adjusting to being part of a team instead of going it alone."

Once the meal has been tidied up, he retakes his seat and sips on what's left of his orange juice. "I appreciate your trust. I hope I can do it justice."

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