Coming Home

Summary:
January 21, 2015: Scott returns to the Xavier Institute after a failed mission.

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Characters

NPCs

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Mood Music:
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With the students back from Winter Vacation, classes have begun again and school is getting back into the swing of things. While some remained over the Holidays, others are being reunited with friends and taking these couple of weeks to renew and refresh their relationships. Apparently to some, two weeks is a lot of time to be apart.

Some teachers also remained at the school while others took their vacation. Dr. McCoy was one of those who remained, often helping students with any projects or supervising other activities. He helped them decorate for the holidays and he helped them pack everything up. Now though, he seems to be back to 'teacher mode', especially in students' eyes and in his own responsibility.

It's after dinner and students and Staff have free time. Some are watching television or playing video games, some are doing homework…really, it's their choice. Teachers, however, tend to make casual rounds to make sure that nothing is going awry. That's Hank's job tonight…making rounds.

*

One of the teachers, however, has been gone for months. It was October when Scott departed. As far as the students were aware, he was going on sabbatical; traveling the world to study how mutants were acclimating themselves to life in other cultures.

It wasn't exactly far from the truth. He had sent photos home, from around the world. Truth is, he was on the hunt for a handful of students who had been abducted in thefall.

In those early evening hours, a lone motorcycle rolls up to the institute. It's peppered with dirt and bugs, and after wiping his face, Scott's rag is similarly soiled.

Its only a few minutes later that he's walking into the building. His frame looks tired, as does his face. However, hidden behind ruby glasses are eyes that look fondly around at the fine wood furnishings. In spite of how greatly he doesn't want to answer any questions, he has to admit, it's good to be home.

*

The sound of a motorcycle is distinctive, even over the sounds of televisions and video games. Making sure that the students are settled in the room he peeked into, Hank makes his way towards the front of the mansion, his pace a little faster than usual. Ever since the attack on the Mansion a few months ago, he's been rather wary and alert. Another scent, however, is caught and he relaxes even as he steps into the foyer to greet the other.

"The Prodigal Son has returned." A hand is offered, "Welcome back, Scott. Everything all right? Were you successful?" There are no students following him in, so the question is sort of answered.

*

A slanted grin spreads along Scott's face when Hank comes into view. "Please," he quips, proving that his signature sarcasm hadn't been affected by sabbatical. "I feel more like John the Baptist." Hank's hand is taken, nonetheless, the grip cold from such a long ride in the cold.

When asked, the smile fades, and there is a momentary pause. "Not even Cerebro could find them," he adds to the unspoken answer. Words are spoken quiet, secretive. "I nearly called to say I'd go out again, but, when I ran into one of our own, hiding out in Texas…" He shakes his head. "I couldn't stay away any longer."

*

Beast's expression also falls some at the answer. Sadly, it's the expected one. "And no signs of foul play…although it's not like we had all that much to work with," and the world is very large. "One of our own in Texas? One that I would know?" Hiding? Why? There's a wrinkle of his nose and a baring of sharp teeth before he gestures for Scott to join him in the kitchen, "You're cold. I know there's some water for tea…" and the kids shouldn't be in there this time of night. If they are, they can just pull authority.

Were you able to get any information?" he offers once they're able to speak alone, "Maybe Illyana can search on other planes…or I can see if SHIELD has any information on any new HYDRA prisoners…"

*

Scott nods his head in regard to Texas, but withholds remark once Hank recommends they retreat to the kitchen. It's proven a prime spot for X-Men planning meetings, after all.

"I'll give you everything I've drawn up, which is mostly a list of dead ends. Reaching out to Illyana is a good idea; I don't think we're going to get anywhere using my conventional methods." Already, he can feel some of theweight lifting from his shoulders. Failure doesn't feel as bad when you know that not all of the resources have been spent.

"I'm not sure it's HYDRA, but it's worth checking. It just doesn't seem to fit their usual modus operandi." Then, he squints at Hank speculatively. "You got contacts in SHIELD?" A small grin. "Things have changed. Speaking of HYDRA… you know of Lunair Weir?"

*

"If the students left this plane…or even this universe, she might be able to help find them…" Hank wouldn't normally find himself saying something like that, but knowing of Illyana and Cal's travels through time, space, and dimension, it's a possibility he can't completely discount. "Also, if their powers have been removed or subdued, somehow, it's possible that Cerebro might not pick them up. HYDRA was working on that virus to render the mutant gene ineffective, who is to say they aren't experimenting on other methods of something similar?"

The squint and grin cause him to give a twist of a smirk, "I have a few contacts in SHIELD…nothing too deep, but I could try and ask a favor of them. It might not be acted upon quickly, but it couldn't hurt." At the mention of the name, he tilts his head, "Yes, I know of her. I did some bloodwork on her a while back…I confirmed that she was, indeed, a mutant."

*

Scott offers a few nods while the water is heating. All good ideas, all possible roads to follow. "I should be taking notes,"he quips, until the conversation turns to talk of SHIELD.

"It might swiften things if you mention that you and Steve Rogers share a mutual friend. Would you believe it, I stumbled across some kind of attack on my way home, and worked alongside Rogers to stop it?"

Scott turns away to fix his tea. "Good, you know her. I ran into Lunair at one of our safe houses in Texas. She's on the run. Claims HYDRA has put out a pretty severe price to get her, to the tune of some millions." He turns back to face Hank, tea in hand. "They probably want to weaponize her."

*

"Steve Rogers? Captain America? Really?" Beast glances over his shoulder at Scott, "I'll name-drop, sure. I don't know how far it will get me, but it couldn't hurt." He then moves to join Scott in the tea preparation, "Millions. Really. I'm not surprised that they might want to weaponize her. Honestly, she might be better off allying herself with something like SHIELD…someone that can offer a high level of protection. Although they'll probably just want to weaponize her as well."

*

"The one and only." Scott can't help but feel a bit of hero worship for the WWII veteran. "Guess the rumors of him being unfrozen are true. Just tell him it's for the guy with the eye lasers."

A rueful look is given at such a supposition. "Right. At least, one would think, the United States would do such a thing. Unfortunately, I'm not sure that kind of Boy Scout thinkingworks any more. Either way, we should keep our eyes out for her." A pause. "She's stayed away because she doesn't want anyone to get hurt. The people who attacked her had some method of slowing her down."

*

"He's actually not one of my contacts, but I'll be sure to pass it along," Hank chuckles then as he takes a seat. "Oh, I certainly think the United States would do such a thing. Look at Captain America, himself." After all, they -were- trying to create super-soldiers! "It's understandable that she'd stay away and it's admirable, but it also means she's completely on her own and that's not right."

The water boils and he moves over to get the tea kettle and bring it over, "Slow her down…physically?"

*

"Physically," Scott nods. "Though, she can be… hard to communicate with. They may have simply been slowing down the speed at which her mutation works? I'm not entirely sure." There's a thoughtful expression, but whatever else Scott was about to say, he silences himself. She had trusted him with some personal information, he knows how valuable that is. "I could ask her to come in?" he offers.

*

Beast pours some water into Scott's mug and then his own as he thinks things over. "It's not a bad idea," he finally offers. "HYDRA knows they can't get in here and if we can bring her in without them knowing…has she been checked for bugs and trackers?" They can do that here as well. "I guess the question is, does she want to stay hidden? They probably won't stop trying to get her unless they're stopped by either her or other sources."

*

"Ultimately? It may come to going on the offensive," Scott wonders. "Find some way of delivering a message. Something that doesn't involve conventional violence, but might dissuade them from going after her any further." He shakes his head. "I'm not sure if she's been bugged. Honestly, Hank, I wasn't expecting to see her in Texas."

After taking a sip of tea, he raises it in a gesture of gratitude. "I'll call her, see how she feels about coming in. It's a start."

*

Beast returns the raised mug, "We can also send Cal or Kurt in to fetch her and teleport her back here. If she -is- bugged, it might be harder for them to track her if she disappears off the grid for a moment and reappears across the country. It will also mean we can de-bug her quickly. I agree that she may need to send them some sort of message to leave her alone, but I guess we should see if she wants to hide out here for a bit. I wouldn't want her to feel like we're just sticking her in a prison."

*

"Nobody likes to be imprisoned," agrees Scott. "I… should send her a message, either way. Wouldn't want her to get spooked and give our guys a hard time." Scott takes another sip. "Then? We ought to take a trip over to see the Red guys. But first, I really need a shower. And a good night's sleep." Not that it isn't likely he'll be tossing and turning for a while, but, the process must be started, nevertheless.

*

There's a nod then, "Of course. I can also get equipment together for the de-bugging so that it's handy when we're ready. Let me know if you'd like company to visit Red…I haven't spoken to them much and I should probably rectify that." He reaches over to pat the other's shoulder, "You get rested up. We'll make sure Lunair's all right."

*

"We'll borrow one of the professor's imports." At that, Scott grins. "Thanks, Hank." The mug of tea goes with him, as does the stench of motorcycle grease and the open road.

*

"We'll borrow one of the professor's imports." At that, Scott grins. "Thanks, Hank." The mug of tea goes with him, as does the stench of motorcycle grease and the open road.


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