1965-03-21 - Trouble Back Home
Summary: Kwabena returns from a trip to Ghana, where he learned some troubling news that he shares with Diz and White Widow.
Related: Man March Weapon plot
Theme Song: None
gwen-stacy julie kwabena 

Its cold for this time of year, with snowflakes falling at dusk. Fortunately the ground has been warm enough to prevent it from sticking to the roads, but there is a light dusting anywhere grass or leaves poke through the mutant ghetto, tricking the eye into considering that spring has not yet arrived.

A motorcycle finds a parking spot with an African man in control. He parks it roughly, then dismounts with practiced ease. He clearly hasn't shaved for a few days, and his hair clearly hasn't been trimmed. Combed, yes, but he definitely needs to visit a barber.

Kwabena stops halfway through stuffing the keys into a black leather riding jacket, and peers around with silver eyes that show some small sense of confusion. "I do know dis place," he murmurs to himself. "Mutant Town." The words come with a sense of relief.

Julie is leaning against the hood of a slightly faded custom '50 Studebaker coupe, painted in delicate Creamsicle colors that may be showing a bit of age. She glances over as the motorcycle pulls up, and says, "Hey, Kwabena, good to see you, where ya been?"

It's the only way to fly.
Okay, it's not FLYING per se, but it's close enough.
Gwen, in her masked identity as White Widow, is moving over the not-quite-invisible border into Mutant Town. Oddly enough, she feels more comfortable in costume than out here.
Maybe it's because she is a little too close to the "vapid blonde" stereotype. Behind the mask, she can be anyone. Skin color doesn't count when you can even see skin color.
She lands on a rooftop and sees two familiar faces. She looks around, relieved there aren't many on the street, and swings over to the ledge above Julie and Kwabena.

At mention of his name, Kwabena's attention is certainly captured. He looks at Julie dumbly for a moment, when suddenly. his eyes blink rapidly with recognition. "Diz!" he exclaims, and moves over to hook an arm around and pull the gal into a hug. "What ah you," he starts, before that sweet ride pulls his attention. "Whoa. Smooth ride. Very 'groovy'." He still hasn't gotten the hang of properly using American slang.

Coming back to the question, he steps away and rubs at the skin behind his ear. "I went home. To Ghana. Fathah said, was urgent." He seems to consider something for a moment, before looking about with some concern. Seeing that this street is at least momentarily unoccupied, he turns back to Julie and lowers his voice. "I think dat, something very bad is coming."

Its not usual for him to not look up before speaking of such dangerous things, which is unlike him. That being said, Gwen's presence remains unknown for now.

Julie ahs, and winks, laughing a bit about the hug, indicating the Studey, "My old ride from high school; my kid cousin's been driving it, but I was bringing her by the shop for some stuff. We're thinking about putting her back on the strip this year." Then she pauses, …possibly having picked up on the swinging motion above. "I guess, as long as nothing bad coming gets in the way. What you mean by that, coming here, or to your Papa's place?"

Jeez, this sounds personal. Swing out, or insert yourself on the conversation? Better do it before too long.
She slowly scales down the wall until she is about 20 feet above them, then takes a breath.
Gwen Stacy, Word Mistress.

A nod of his head to talk of the Studebaker, sure, but Kwabena seems… preoccupied. "I'm not sure," he tells Julie. "I think… everywhere."

As cryptic as that might seem, the conversation is understandably stalled when Gwen drops in. Kwabena looks up, recognition again being delayed for but a moment. When it sets in, he's about to blurt out her name, but stalls short at forming the first syllable. He smirks a bit at his own near spillage, before glancing from the masked Widow to Julie, then back to the street. True story, it's now or never. Back to Gwen he looks, then gestures up toward the rooftop high above. "Give us a lift, eh strangah?"

Julie ahs, as Gwen climbs on down. She gives a wave, "Ah, hey there. Spider-girl, ain't it? Good to see you again, too. Different togs, though." She glances to Kwabena. "Lift where, you mean?"

Widow grins. "Stranger than the two of you put together, anyways."
THWIPP! And just like that, Julie and Kwabena have a thin webline attached to their upper backs.
And just like that, they find themselves being lifted up as Widow climbs the wall, the weblines over her shoulder.
"Hey, Jules…you lose weight or somethin'?"

"You know." Kwabena nods upward. "Up dere."

He gives a little grunt when the webline tugs him upward, but this isn't at all unfamiliar territory to him. "Well," he answers Gwen's remark, "you know I like to be unpredictabah." He grasps hold of the webbing to steady his ascent, occasionally kicking at the wall to keep himself from running into it. He glances over to check on Julie with a crooked grin. "Kind of like de rappelling, yes?"

Julie whoas, a bit as they're tugged on up, grabbing her jacket lapels and rather reflexively stabilizing herself with a strange gyroscopic Vrrr sound, putting out a foot, occasionally till she's high enough to perhaps perch on something. "I dunno, there, guess I been working out." Eyes Kwabena with a 'was this trip really necessary' sort of look.

Widow climbs up on the ledge, then lifts the other two, hand over hand.
This increased strength stuff was unsettling sometimes. It scared her, the damage she could actually do.
She pulls up Kwabena, then Julie, detaching the webbing with a careful swipe, then smoothed out their jackets. "See? No harm, no foul."

Was it necessary? Probably not, but it was fun. The mirth is evident in Kwabena's eyes when he meets Julie's look. "Rooftop," he explains, "always best place to talk without de prying of oddah ears."

He looks back to Gwen, then walks up and pulls her into a hug as well. "Is good to see you, too," he tells her, before stepping back with hands on her shoulders. "How you doing, anyway?" He trusts he doesn't have to clarify just what he's asking.

"Fathah works for President of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah." Admitting this is clearly out of his comfort zone. Kwabena prefers to keep a low profile when possible, and admitting this connection is taking an awful great deal of trust. "President said, dere is some kind of revolt forming in Ghana, but fathah's military advisor told him, is not a revolt against de Republic of Ghana. De President is, apparently, denying it, but…" He shakes his head. "You know me, had to look into it fah myself."

Julie laughs, a bit to Gwen, glancing out over the street and rooftops. "Cool gift you got there, and says, by way of comment, listening to Kwabena, and glancing back that he ought to go on with his story. She lights up a smoke.

Gwen smiles wryly under the mask. "I am doing pretty good in my classes. Working on the basics before going into the criminal law classes. I'm doing a pretty decent job in Honors English, and I'm thinking of taking summer classes in Journalism." She smiles to Julie. "I ought to bring you with me webslinging one night. It is like the warmest rollercoaster you'll ever ride." She looks back to Kwabena. "I also met another heroine, a telepath. With some kind of alien symbiote. Calls herself Index."

Satisfied with such an answer, Kwabena steps back to form a triangle with the other two. Now seeing Julie with a smoke, he fishes into his jacket and produces a pack himself. Jury's still out on whether this stuff is really bad for you, there are some doctors who still swear by the healing properties of nicotine.

"President is wrong," Kwabena tells them, the words muffled a bit until he's finished lighting up. "Is not a coup. Dey have mutants. A lot of dem. More dan dere should be possible, considering it is such a small country, but dey have been… sending dem places. Outside of Africa, even." This last part he says with some degree of concern. "I… I don't know where, not yet, but dese are not nice peopah." That much he says with conviction, as if he'd witnessed some terrible things in his time back home.

Julie nods, glancing over to Gwen, then looks to Kwabena. "Sending em places to do things, or just to be outta the country?" She adds, "Sounds like something we oughtta look into, way too many people out there putting the bag on mutants for whatever reasons. That what they're revolting against, then, whatever it is?"

Widow nodded. "If you can tell me what to look for, I have some cop friends who might be able to do a favor for me. I can file it alongside the Reilly kidnapping." Gwen looks around. "Ever get the feeling the game's about to get pretty rough?"

"It was military," Kwabena tells Julie. "Not Ghana. What is de word. Commando?" He shakes his head, seeming frustrated momentarily with his limited grasp of English. "Not govahnment, private outfit, probably stolen from oddah African nations. Many flags and dialects, so… probably to do things." To Gwen he nods and considers. He'd be the last person in the world to trust cops, but admittedly, he has come to trust the cops Gwen trusts. "African mutants?" he offers, a bit helplessly. "I'm sorry, I wish… I should know more." That confession brings back his confused look. "Something happened dere, my… my memory is broken."

Julie nods to Gwen, "Had that feeling a lot since last year, really." She hrms. "Well, I better bring you on back to someone that can help with your memory, then. They got hold of you, I'm guessing?"

Widow nods. "It's a start. If I can keep their minds on the powers and not the skin color, maybe I can find something. I can reach you on the same number?" She holds up a business card. "I still have Dad's card."

"I don't know," Kwabena answers truthfully.

Which probably means yes, they did.

"Yeah, same numbah," he tells Gwen. It's for the apartment he rents in the city, but fortunately, he's got the thing rigged to forward his calls to Westchester when he's there. Completely and entirely illegal, which is just how he likes it. "African, with thick accent, like me," he tells Gwen helpfully. "Fah as I know, I'm de only one around here. Don't worry… dey won't peg me." If there's one thing Kwabena is good at, it's avoiding the fuzz.

Julie hrms. "Well, yeah, guess we better check you out there. People got a way of thinking trying to mess with people's heads is some kinda good idea. You want I should just cawl someone right now, or, you wanna try and see what else we can figure out?"

Widow smiles sadly. "Well, *I* certainly don't know anyone who could fill the bill. If you want, I can spend some time tonight seeding the informant fields and see what sprouts. If I get any information, I'll send it onward." She looks to Julie. "Anything I can help with on your end?"

Julie shakes her head. "Not about this, though on something else, I'm on the lookout for a black custom Studey woodie, about a '38, I'm guessing. Kinda want to tawk to the driver about something. Probably he's from outta town but I think he's connected to this Senator's daughter that got kidnapped."

"I think I know just who to call," Kwabena tells Julie. There are exactly two telepaths he knows and two he trusts. "May need to leave Index out of dis one," he tells Gwen. "Still. Do not know what 'symbiote' means, but it sounds exciting."

He's yet to get caught up on the news, so he looks back to Julie with a perked eyebrow. "What Senatah's daughtah?"

Widow tilts her head. "Haven't you heard? Senator Reilly. Democrat, New York. Anti-corporate and pro-mutant. His daughter got kidnapped about a week or so ago. At first they thought she got killed when the limo was bombed."

Julie draws on a smoke and nods to Kwabena. "I was pretty close by, that's how I know about the Studey." she says, and points down at the one she drove here. "Kind of unusual there's a custom one like that in town without mi familia knowing about it." She addds to Kwabena. "And, while you been a way there's been talk of making mutants register with the government. Course maybe your home country's a good example why that'd be bad."

Such news makes Kwabena's skin crawl a bit, and he pulls his arms up around himself for extra warmth. Years ago he wouldn't have given a damn about politicians and their families, but times have changed. Perhaps seeing his father again made him care even more.

"No," he answers quietly. "I flew in dis morning. It takes long time for news to reach a small country like Ghana."

Looking from Widow to Diz, Kwabena's expression finally stiffens. "I will guess dat Senatah Reilly opposes dis law?" he asks, then draws another and much deeper drag from his square. "You're right." He looks back to Gwen. "Game might get rough."

Gwen nods. "Yeah. Big time. The guy sounded like an old-time preacher, castigating the ones in favor of the law. That people with powers don't need to be feared, or hated. He said they needed to be trained in their proper use, for the good of others. I gotta tell you, it gave me real hope…"

Julie nods to Gwen, and says, "Yeah, that really sounds more like it." Kwabena gets a wink, there. "Of course those bad guys usually don't pick the ones with powers to go after in this neighborhood. Probably another drawback of registering people, they'd be able to tell who's not really likely to be any better able to fight back than anyone else."

"I could tell you any numbah of reasons why dis is a bad idea," Kwabena says to Diz, "but den I would be… preaching to de choir?" He draws his arms away from himself and takes the last drag of his smoke. "Hope's all we got," he says to Gwen, before cupping his hand around the still burning cigarette. Flesh and bone poof into a cloud of black, snuffing out the slow burn before the gas reforms into a hand once more. He's been practicing. "And here's one mutant who won't give up on it."

"It's what elevates us, Kwabena…Jules." She tilts her head, then says, "I have to get going. I have to meet three informants and get two chapters of American History into my thick skull before tomorrow." She walks over to the ledge. "Don't be a stranger, you two. Or at the very least, don't be stranger than me." She winks, then jumps. One THWIPP later, she is swinging off toward Midtown.

Julie nods, "One thing I hate to admit I don't trust Uncle Sam with." Dizzy's rather patriotic, after all. She nods to Gwen, giving a wave and salute as Gwen heads off. "Crazy," she compliments the web-swinging. "You wanna get a beer or something? Maybe I oughtta cawl someone after all."

"Coffee," Kwabena says after Gwen. "But not too much or you will have souah stomach!" He smirks as she swings off, watching for a moment before turning back to Julie. "She is something. Reminds me why I could not stay away from filthy Big Apple for too long." He perks up at mention of a beer, and shoves the snuffed out cigarette into his pocket. "Magic words. But…" He turns to look over the edge of the building. "Maybe we should find you a fire escape?"

Julie hrms, and nods, "Guess that's best. Course, I could fiddle any lock and use the stairs, but who knows who's awake." Seeya down there, then?"

"Where's de fun in that?" asks Kwabena, before turning and swan diving right off the roof and into the alley.

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