Garden Woes

January 09, 2015: Warren annoys Betsy, Lorna plays peace keeper.

Xavier's Mansion

The lawn outside the Xavier Mansion.



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Mood Music:

Friday, January 09, 2015, 9:52 AM
It has been a few months since Betsy has returned to the mansion. While she is not one to speak about her choices, or what she has been up to; allowing people to assume she spent it back home in the UK is exactly what she intends to do. The fact she no longer has a red dagger over her eye will eventually come up, but at that time, she will then address it. Otherwise, it's no one's bloody hell business.

A cold, blustery wind blows through the trees as Betsy emerges from the blood red vehicle she's taken as hers for the time being. The Stingray Corvette is brand new, and while American made, as the saying goes, while in Rome. She's dressed for comfort, at least as far as she's willing to go; a pair of black skinny jeans, knit sweater, and warm wool coat complete with faux fur hood. A pair of thickly soled boots grace her feet, while black leather gloves adorn her hands.

Violet eyes take in the mansion, at least it hasn't been burned to the ground in her absence, which has been the case in previous returns! Elizabeth's mind whirls outwards, listening in to see who else might be around this morning, just listening for surface thoughts, nothing more.

In addition to the red Stingray that pulls up in front of the stately Xavier Institute, one may also notice a rather pristine 4x4 pick-up truck parked before the mansion, white in color with boldly stenciled lettering across both sides that reads 'McGregor Brothers General Contractors and Landscaping'. The truck is empty of people at the moment, however, though as one may reach out in a telepathic manner they will be sure to catch the presence of two individuals off to the side of the estate, milling about within the Japanese gardens there. One of those individuals may be easily pegged as the owner of the pick-up truck, and he's nodding and jotting down notes as the other individual talks and gestures a bit to him. That second individual may be more familiar and recognized as one Warren Worthington the Third, sometimes also known as Angel.

Dressed in relaxed fitting sportcoat and slacks that have been clearly tailored to fit him perfectly, Warren gestures across the slightly unkempt gardens as he speaks to the other man. His wings are on full display at the moment, though the feathery white appendages are folded unobtrusively behind him. "Now, what I'm envisioning over here is something in more of a French style. Maybe a couple of reflecting pools, a big fountain in the middle… I've got someone from Gagosian coming out later today to give me some statuary ideas. Probably real classical stuff. But I want to get all the digging and foundation work done now so everything will be ready by Spring." At the somewhat blank and dubious look of the contractor, Warren pauses and crosses his arms over his slim chest. "Hey, you said your firm would be able to drop the rest of your projects to make it happen. If the project is too big…"

Inside the mansion, on the upper floor, with the window to her room closed against the cold and a towel over her head as she dries her hair off after the longest shower of her life (required to be absolutely, positively, definitely sure that she'd gotten all trace of Savage Land swamp off of her)… and Lorna still hears the angry growl of that big V8 as the Corvette pulls up outside the mansion. Pausing in her hair-drying efforts, Lorna leaves the towel around her shoulders as she wanders over to her window to look out, mildly curious - and then increasingly so as she sees who steps out of the expensive car. While she hadn't really expected anyone in particular, she definitely hadn't expected Elizabeth Braddock, and certainly not in such a big, brash and downright /American/ car. Lorna grins approvingly. Giving the pickup a quick glance since she doesn't remember it arriving, Lorna shrugs and on a whim, decides to head downstairs. Giving her hair a final vigorous towelling, she slips on a hooded sweater over her not terribly presentable outfit of tank top and track pants, finger-combs the green mass into something approaching a style, and heads off to investigate.

A few moments later, and she's pushing open the front door. And a couple of moments after /that/, she wishes she'd grabbed a coat and her hair was properly dry. Brr. Still, she offers Betsy a wave as she walks outsize. "Hi Elizabeth." She calls, lowering her voice as she gets closer, to something more conversational. "Sorry you don't get more of a welcoming committee."

The usual jumble of thoughts hit Betsy's mind as she scans the area. Children, staff, X-Men, contractors… it's the last that causes Betsy to pause in what she was going to do, and instead turn her attention in the directions of the Japanese Gardens, or at the very least, what use to be them - if certain thoughts are lead to believe! Violet eyes narrow to slits, as the British-Japanese woman turns on her booted feet in that direction, continuing to monitor the thoughts of those there.

It is no fault of Lorna's what so ever that she receives the complete scowl that rides across Betsy's features at the greeting. The look is intense, a narrowing of her eyes, lips of ruby red pierced tightly into a line, and a jaw set into a grinding of the back teeth motion.

The expression immediately softens, ever so slightly, however, as Betsy realizes she's scowling most hideously at Lorna Dane - not the one responsible for this audacious act. "Terribly sorry Lorna." Elizabeth begins, "You are not the one I am — quite put out at. How are you doing, my dear?"

It's Warren that will suddenly receive a telepathic invasion of his thoughts, ><Worthington! >< The voice is stern, cold, a telepathic summoning of the highest order.

While re-acquaintances are being made around the corner of the large mansion, Warren is continuing to hammer out details with the contractor, shaking his head at the other man's rather lengthy time projections. "No, I told you, the pools need to be dug out /before/ the end of March. Look, you came highly recommended to me, but-" He stops mid-sentence at the telepathic summons, however, blinking once in an expression that leaves the contractor opposite him quite confused. No stranger to telepathic communications - he was one of Professor Xavier's initial recruits after all! - Warren doesn't take long to respond, however, making certain to issue a brief apology to the contractor before hand. "Look, do the math again and if the job's too big or your outfit doesn't have enough time, let me know I'll get someone else. I'll be right back."

Leaving the contractor to scratch his head and mutter quietly to himself about the demands of rich mutants, Warren moves in long, easy strides to circle around the corner of the building, offering a broad and disarming smile before he even sees the two women talking out front there. "Betsy!" he calls out first to the one that called him out telepathically, before also spotting the green-haired woman with. "And Lorna!" He has his hands tucked casually into the pockets of his expensive slacks, the hemline of his suit jacket bunched up a little about his wrists. Behind him, the feathers of his large white wings flutter and rustle in the brisk winter air. "Good morning! Thought I'd start getting things in place for the Spring thaw. You don't think anyone will mind if we re-do the landscaping a little, do you?"

Lorna HAD been walking toward Betsy with a grin and a bouncy, cheerful stride that might have suggested that a welcome-home hug was in Betsy's future, British reserve be damned, but then the Look hits, and Lorna's pace slows dramatically. Lorna's not the telepath here, but she doesn't need to be one to appreciate that Betsy is very definitely Not Happy. And apparently with her.

But Lorna's just gotten back from a particularly trying trip to the Savage Land. Its going to take more than being glared at to intimidate her. "Was it something I said?" She asks, a bit facetiously, her eyebrows raised questioningly.

…and then Betsy's expression undergoes a sudden change, and Lorna decides it's safe to approach after all. She doesn't make any attempt to go for that hug, though. The look on Betsy's face a moment ago was enough to make her cautious, at least. "Put out with someone already? You just got here!" Lorna tries a cheerful tack, before thinking better of it. "Better now /I'm/ home too." Lorna says, her previous good humour fading. "I have had the /worst/…" She begins - and then cuts off as Warren suddenly strolls into view. His sudden appearance is utterly unexpected, since she was left out of the telepathic summons.

"Warren!" She calls back to him warmly, and jogs forward to give him a quick hug, heedless of whether she rumples his elegant outfit. "I had no idea you were back!" She says as she releases him, giving him a fond look before picking up on what he was saying. "Sounds interesting, show me what you've got in mind?" She says, genuinely intrigued.

Perhaps feeling just a tiny bit guilty at the expression given to Lorna, Elizabeth would have to make it up to the green haired mutant with apologies and perhaps a nice shopping trip for the two of them. In fact, considering Lorna was about to express her displeasure over her own recent trials and tribulations, Elizabeth would decline to say 'buck it up', and instead offer a condescending expression of sympathy. it is, after all, what most Americans seek. "Terribly sorry to hear." Betsy even begins…

Then Warren makes his appearance, his speech, and Lorna's giving the traitorous bastard a hug, and agreeing with eagerness at his suggestion! If Betsy wasn't British, both would receive the tongue lashing of a life time. As it is, however, the cold, articulate, meaningful expression is left out, and the half-warmth of a smile that Lorna initially got, is instead transformed into a cool, distant, slight arching of Betsy's brows upwards, and the neutral expression of ruby lips piercing into a thin line. No smile. No scowl. No laugh. No frown. Just a thin line, chin slightly lifted.

"Warren." Betsy begins, her voice as cold as the wind that billows down from the mountains. "There are those that enjoy those gardens just as they are." She begins, her boots making crunching noises in the ice and snow as she moves slowly, gracefully, and not quietly (which should account for her mood at least some!) towards the two. "Terribly sorry to interrupt, though might I suggest instead of changing things to your own pleasure, to take into consideration the feelings of the majority. Please."

Her voice never raise above a proper tone, there is only a calming, conversational quality to her words.

Returning Lorna's impromptu hug, Warren is all smiles at first, wrapping his own arms around the green-haired woman in a friendly, familiar gesture. "Just flew in," he answers her as he disengages from the brief embrace - the grin on his features evident that he when he says 'flew', he doesn't mean he took a plane. "Haven't even had the opportunity to catch up with anyone. Or see who's about really." He shrugs then, his posture calm and relaxed and not seeming at all to yet pick up on the rigid or perturbed demeanor of Betsy just across from them. "Saw the deplorable state of the gardens and thought it might be time for a change if no-one was planning on keeping up with the current layout. I was thinking that a nice French garden might look great over there," he begins. "Maybe a couple of reflecting pools in the middle, with-"

Warren stops as Betsy cuts him off then, her voice as chilly as her expression. He lifts his blonde eyebrows as the woman makes her case then, a bit of surprise clearly etched across his own features. "Well, I wasn't going to do anything until I talked with Charles or Scott or someone, of course. Just getting everything in place beforehand so we can move quickly to have it looking nice by the time Spring is here. The way the gardens look now it seemed to me that no-one's kept them up at all in ages and I figured if that was the case, maybe we should make a change." He twists his lips to one side, then, lowering his voice a little in both a tone of apology as well as confidentiality. "To be honest, I thought that Logan had them put in and hadn't asked anybody when he did it. They weren't here last time I came around."

Betsy might have gotten the whole story from Lorna - whether she'd wanted it or not - but at least she's been saved from that fate by the arrival of Warren. She smiles almost conspiratorially as he casually mentions flying in, though with his wings on display she guesses it's not much of a secret these days. "Just don't fly off again too fast, despite the cold! It feels like I haven't spoken to you in forever." Between taking time out to finish her Masters, and then the Savage Land trip, it's probably not far from the truth.

Belatedly realising that she's monopolising him a bit, with Betsy standing right there, Lorna half-turns as if to include her in the conversation, adding as she does so, "You should see Betsy's car. It looks very much your style…" By which she's sure he won't be offended to know means fast, sleek and above all expensive. She's quickly drawn back into his plans for the garden, though, nodding in thoughtful interest as her eyes follow the direction he indicates. "It'd be a change…" She begins, then feels the chill emanating from Betsy almost as if it's a physical force, and looks back in the other woman's direction, brows drawing together quizzically.

Ah. Lorna just about manages to avoid wincing as she sees the frosty reception Warren's idea is getting from that quarter. She holds up her hands in a placating gesture, attempting to break any tension. "All I know is, I didn't put them in!" She says with a smile, then glances at Warren. "Living dangerously, Warren? If Logan /did/ put them in…" It seems less like a warning, and more like she finds the idea amusing.

Ah the impetuous nature of Americans, taking things into their own hands, long before even asking those in charge about it. At least Warren says a few words that cause Betsy's ire to fade, somewhat at least. That being, ask 'Charles and Scott' first before doing anything drastic. Everything else is unnecessary chatter. She could care less that his statement means he has a dislike for Logan, it is a fact that most dislike the Canadian, and for good reason. Thus, Betsy's icy demeanor begins to fade ever so slightly, as nothing is going to be done without consent from others, and Warren doesn't have cart blanch to do as he pleases.

Casting a glance at Lorna, Elizabeth can't help but let the tiniest of a smile cross her features. at least the woman is truthful and attempting to keep the peace. She will not get a psychic knife, Warren on the other hand ..

If a predatory look crosses Elizabeth's features momentarily, it is surely just as fleeting as the smile, for her emotions return in check, and the purple haired mutant lets out a soft breath. "If you are seeking to make a change, perhaps we might work together to keep the feel of the tranquility and peace the gardens offer, only change it up enough to remove the dead and wilting, and transform it back into what it is intended?"

Turning her gaze from Lorna, to Warren and back again, Elizabeth gestures towards her car. "And thank you for the compliment, I am quite enjoying it. Perhaps you would like to take it for a drive, Lorna?"

While Warren may often be self-absorbed, he's not so oblivious that he's unable to see Betsy's opinions on this particular matter, nor the emotions that she is barely keeping in check under the surface. Accordingly, he offers the purple-haired woman a gracious nod at her suggestion. "Of course, of course. I was just thinking it might be nice to spruce things up a little bit, keep everything looking good. Didn't mean to step on anyone's toes." He pauses at that, reconsidering the statement. "Well, except maybe Logan's. And yes," he acknowledges Lorna with another grin. "I always like to live dangerously. What's the fun in doing otherwise?"

"Speaking of which, I say you take Betsy up on her offer and go for a spin! I've got some things to take care of back at the office in New York, but if you both have time tonight I'd love to catch up, maybe over some greasy hamburgers and soda down at Harry's? We can talk about the landscaping while we're there too. Instead of reflecting pools, we can put in a koi pond maybe… I know an importer who can help us out, transport some good stock straight from Japan…" Warren isn't opposed at all to the idea of keeping the gardens in the same spirit as they are now, it seems, and is just as happy to focus his 'helpful' efforts into rejuvenating the area to meet Betsy's preferences. "Anyways, you kids have fun. I'm going to go tell Mr. MacGregor that we're heading in a different direction." He winks as he starts to turn about, "Truthfully, I'll think he'll be happy, he didn't seem too keen on getting everything done by spring anyways."

Lorna's only pretending not to notice how annoyed Betsy clearly is, but as the other woman seems to thaw out a little Lorna breathes a private sigh of relief. She really didn't want to spend today in the middle of an argument over landscape gardening, but for a moment or two there it looked like that was exactly what was going to happen! She offers the slightest of nods to Betsy in answer to the faint smile that's sent in her direction, and then looks surprised at the unexpected offer. "Yes!" She replies without thinking, before grinning wryly at her own reaction and trying again, "I mean, I'd like that. Thank you, Elizabeth."

She chuckles quietly at Warren's words. "Must be why you keep coming back to this place." Lorna shakes her head, and then has to lift a hand to brush back an errant green curl. "I haven't worked out my excuse yet." She adds ruefully, but that's a discussion for another time, when there aren't fast cars to drive. "Sounds good. We'll be there." Perhaps Lorna's being a bit overconfident, but time will tell. "I'm sure you can talk him around. See you later, Warren." As he heads off, Lorna falls in beside Betsy again, snorting quietly to herself. "Kids." She says with a shake of her head, as they walk back toward the Stingray.

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