Infusing Mutants

March 27, 2015: Illyana checks in with Jericho and gets an update on HYDRA activities




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Mood Music:

Time is the critical ingredient in all things. The right amount of time makes all things right. But it can also ruin things. Too little time, or too much and things spoil. Plans, people, places. Time is different in Limbo but that doesn't make it any less important than in other places. Jericho spends a fair amount of time and the fact that he can and still be in all the places he needs to be on the other side is a definite plus, because some things are too important for him to miss. Like the Green. Jericho's done a lot of 'expansion' in his landscaping in the several months he's been doing it and now he's doing some maintenance. Pruning, keeping out the dead things, making sure the growing things can grow. Of corse this is Limbo so he also has to occasionally beat even the plants into submission. Just kind of how it goes.

The edge between the Green and the wasteland used to be a knife's edge. The lush greenery just… ending. With Jericho's careful work, that edge has started to blurr. The Green creeping outwards. Illyana helps, but she doesn't usually garden on her own. She can't quite keep the focus to do it on her own. She stepping disks in, fingers hooked into her pockets as she looks around to see his work. "Sometimes, I don't recognize it anymore." She notes.

There's a couple demons not far off. One of them has large amber batwings on it's back. Another is a small ish lupine creature with blue fur and hair and a long lizardlike tail. They turn to watch as Illyana enters but don't approach. They'd rather see what happens.

Jericho himself turns as he feels Illyana arrive and smiles, putting down his shears and taking his (rather thick) gloves off. His traces are dull red from absorbing Limbo magic and his eyes light up. "Is that a good thing or a bad thing?"

"Better. Definitely… better." Illyana's attention is drawn over towards the latter of the demons most particularly. She frowns. "I… don't remember my demons having fur." She says, sounding a bit confused. Scales, leathern skin, sure. But… fur? Not usually.

Jericho turns to look and see what's drawn Illyana's eye. "Hrm. Makes two of us. They're all so varied I never payed much attention to what they looked like individually." He pauses. "Though I've seen that one wandering around this area before. Or… one like him." Because honestly look away and the landscape shifts. He can't tell - yet - if he's looking at the same demon or just a group of them.

"But I'm glad you approve." He murmurs low glancing back. "What brings you by?" It's her domain of course, he's just curious.

Illyana gives a shake of her head, not too worried about the unusual looking demon, Maybe he's crept in from beyond the wasteland. It happens from time to time. Jericho's question gets a chuckle as she walks over towards him, hooking her fingers in his beltloops to drag him in towards her. "You." She says, skipping any teasing reply.

Jericho is fairly easy to draw in. He's never minded. Truth be told, even before Illyana started showing particular interest in it he enjoyed the touch. Most folks don't touch him. There aren't that many he trusts and even the ones he might call friend are usually at arms length or greater. And being hit in a fight doesn't count. He wraps his arms around the blonde's waist. "Mmmmm. Well you've found me." Not that she ever has any trouble with that now.

"I wanted to make sure this wasn't neglected." Because it's her. "And… I figured someone to keep an eye on things couldn't hurt, all things considered." Meaning, he's been wanting to be around in case N'astirh started stirring up trouble. That's been quite though. Jericho takes out groups of demons from time to time to kick over rebel camps, and it's kept the wasteland demons further away but not generated any additional information.

Illyana chuckles. "I did." She agrees, settling in easily against him. "Things are at once both at an all time low of demony uprising problems and at a high in terms of threat." She notes in a dry manner. The normal demons are behaving. But N'astirh's actively plotting something.

"So. What trouble have you been getting into?" Because while she doesn't know the details of what he's been up to, it's sort of a given that Jericho's getting into *something*. It's like he doesn't know how to slow down and relax. Except he does. It's just usually in Limbo.

"Trying to piece together what HYDRA got from N'astirh before they use it, mostly. I've got some SHIELD agents helping me look into some illegal genetics operations connected to them in Gotham." The hacker seems quite comfortable with Illyana tucked in against him. One demon nudges the other in the distance. The Darkchilde is always an item of interest to demons, but there's an art to knowing when to stare and when to be scarce. The two of them disappear behind a rock formation to go look for other trouble.

Illyana's not wrong about Jericho. Partisan's observed the same about him and honestly his ability to relax is recent. It helps to have a place where one feels safe. Ish. Even if that place is a minor hell realm. Home is home, after all, regardless of occasionally having to remind people why they leave you alone. "I recovered some infromation from a rescue that suggested they were trying to infuse mutants with magical power." He lets that sit there. They were trying to replicate Illyana, he thinks. He's visited several sites since then to… let them know what he thinks of their efforts.

Illyana tilts her head back to look up at him, frowning. "Just random mutants? Why would they want to do that?" It seems like an odd choice to her, since plugging them into a magical source isn't terribly likely to augment their mutant powers. "Infuse them how?"

"Incredibly unhealthy ways. One had powdered reagents added to her bloodstream. Another was exposed to a ley line over a period of days. It smacks of dabbling and experimentation but I think they're trying to duplicate you somehow." Jericho gives Illyana a squeeze and looks down at her, his eyes glimmering in a fashion that betrays some concern. "Makes me wonder what N'astirh told them." Likely not that much or he thinks Illyana might have been more directly targeted, but… might they be trying to make someone who can command arcane forces on that scale on earth? Or another plane? He doesn't know yet. It's a disturbing possibility though.

Illyana looks… well. Perplexed. If you can be annoyed while doing so. "Duplicate me? I suppose it's a good thing they don't know how to create Bloodstones then." It's said as a joke, but it's a bit too flat to be funny. Of course it's more than the bloodstones themselves. It's their placement in the amulet that forges the link between her and the Elder Gods. "Mutants are supposed to be more…" She frowns then, trying to think of the word. "Resilliant? We tend to be able to last longer than baseline humans in general. Maybe normal humans proved too fragile. I was using magic long before my powers appeared." But mutating mages might be more problematic.

Jericho hadn't really heard that before. There's quite a bit about Illyana's background and past that she simply hasn't told him. Though the same is true of him, so there's that. "Mmmmm. More evidence that they don't really know what they're doing…" He muses. "Either way, it's hurting folks, so I thought it best to shut them down." Also even the thought of them trying to duplicate Illyana makes him rather angry for reasons that don't have anything to do with threats or innocents. His eyes flash for a moment and then return to a steady glow.

The one nice thing is that suggests whatever N'astirh sold them, it wasn't information about Limbo. On the other hand, that's probably because N'astirh wanted to keep whatever was going on here nice and private. Well, nothing to be done about it just at the moment.

"The good news is that most of the test subjects have been recovered alive. I've routed a few to the Nest and I know vigilantes and X-Men have performed a couple rescues as well. I'm more worried about what they think they're trying to accomplish."

"Seems like that's a direction they've been going in for a while." Illyana says with some annoyance. Them not knowing what they're doing. Well, the part of HYDRA they've been running into, at any rate. It probably keeps folks busy so some other branch of HYDRA can be all scary-competant.

"Let me know if you need me to look in on them. I should be able to break any enchantments on them." From the sounds of it, they're only doing 'surface' spells. The types of things Illyana can break without too much trouble.

"So far yes, and if you've time for it I welcome the help." Zee's helpful and Sara's helpful but neither of them have the experience with this that Illyana does. Besides, she's good to have at his back. They work well together and he welcomes her company - be it directly with him or just looking into the same stuff. "Anyway… things are moveing on that as best they can now." Which is why he carved out time to be here.

"How are things with you?" Beat. "And just… how are you?" Both of those are asked more quietly. Illyana doesn't generally let it show or let it get to her, but she's got a lot on her plate between trouble, X-Red and ruling Limbo. More than he does, sometimes.

Illyana chuckles as he 'checks in' on her. She pushes up to her tiptoes so she can kiss the corner of his mouth. "I'm good." She assures him. "I'm concerned that we haven't tracked down what HYDRA is doing, because I think the scale of it is going to be frightening, but otherwise I'm good." She pokes him lightly. "I've got you."

Jericho smiles. Actually smiles, in that subdued way he does. How having him makes it better is a bit beyond him, but he's glad she feels that way. It's the way he feels about her, after all. He chuckles at the poke and gives the blonde another squeeze and a kiss in return. Despite the fact that he can't see any odds are good that there's at least one demon watching. There usually is. And under other circumstances he might worry about seeming 'soft'. But not with Illyana.

"The way it's shaping up I have to agree." And it really does concern him which is why he's digging so hard at it. But at least at present he accepts that right now what he needs is time. And he can't think of a better way to spend, nor better company. "If they really manage it, are we going to be able to undo the damage?"

Illyana lets out a breath in a long sigh and shakes her head. "I don't know." She admits. "Hopefully. But it might take a while, and things never go back to being quite the same, you know? We'll do the best we can." She hitches a shoulder in a shrug. "Best we can do."

"All anyone can do." Jericho agrees. If they can fix it, great. If not… he's been a soldier long enough to know that not everything gets fixed. Not every story goes to 'happily ever after'. In fact, most don't. But it doesn't keep people from going on. So they'll do the best they can, and deal. "Care to help me get a bit more of the Green pruned before dinner and some music? Or maybe some dancing?" He's going to have time. They went out not too long ago but chances should be noted as they come up. Sometimes things get busy, after all. "Or just dinner and some good company."

"Oh? Have someone 'good' in mind?" Illyana teases, finally letting him go so she can poke around for an extra pair of gloves. He usually has gear for her. Just in case.

"Dinner. Definitely. Then…" Illyana looks back at him, smirking. "I might have a few ideas…" As the saying goes, famous last words…

Jericho grins. "I might." Jericho does indeed have gear for her. And ideas? Well, he tends to like her ideas. So gardening and ideas it is.

Time is the most important factor in most things. Which makes it precious. Giving of time is one of the most valuable things one person can give another, because you can never be sure how much you have. Jericho knows this only too well. He suspects Illyana does too.

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