Dealing With Morality

May 02, 2015:

Following the X-Men meeting, Scott and Jean discuss morality.

Central Park - NYC


NPCs: None.


Mood Music: None.

Fade In…

The sun had set by the time everyone had left the Red building, the food was left in the fridges for the rest of the team who were out doing what they do so that they could come home to a home-cooked meal that needed to be microwaved, or possibly popped into the oven. Or maybe, just maybe heated with their natural gifts. Any way would be great; Jean cooks like a beast when inspired or possibly bored. But once the last of the X-men trickled out of the Quarters, Jean and Scott took their little 'meeting' and 'needing to talk' to the streets, more importantly, central park.

It was quiet, save for the occasional hobo who mingles by upon his cart, who asks for change and was promptly handed a five dollar bill and the plate of food that she was going to keep for herself. There was also a skateboarder, and often times a person rushing home from work; taking the park as a short cut was much better than going around.

But it was relatively quiet, hand in hand they both were, save for the odd clicking of her booted heels that nearly bring her to the height of him, the other hand tucked within her back pocket with her thumb loose enough to occasionally fiddle with her belt loop.

"So, you wanted to talk."


"I'm just concerned for you," Scott starts, cutting right to the chase. There's no terseness in his voice, for he was comfortable with her, but admittedly, there are so many things to think about. If he sounds a bit distant, it's due to those things. "I know you haven't been sleeping, Jean, and when we were in Boston?" He'd noticed how damaged she was. He glances her way, frowning. "Was it from the CADMUS attack?"


Jean winces, she didn't hear the terseness in her voice but most Doctors, no matter what profession, hated speaking about themselves as if they were damaged. "I've never really been able to sleep, Scott. You're just noticing this because we're sleeping together." She pauses, dropping a bit back in step. "Physically." She remarks. Either way, she was drawn into silence, moreso for the park bench looked proper for a conversation of this magnitude in between them, which she leads them do with a release of his hand so that she could take a perch upon the slats. Per usual, one leg crosses over the other as her chin lifts to glance towards the light, her lips pursed in thought.

"Yes." She states simply. "We're getting old, Scott. We don't heal as fast as we used to." She smiles then, lowering her chin as a hand reaches towards the spot next towards her, patting it so that he could take a seat. "We need to talk about that."


"We're not exactly 'old' either, are we?" answers Scott ruefully. In fact, in many cases, they were far too young for the expectations and demands put upon them. He sits down next to Jean, sighing deeply as he does; a sense of weight lifted when he takes it off his feet. He glances her way with a humored scowl. No, he hasn't yet been to see Dr. Richards, and… well. There were more important things.

"Because of the telepathy?" he asks, probing a bit deeper into why she isn't sleeping. "I mean… you can block them out, can't you? Thoughts and voices from other people?" Perhaps she can't do such a thing when sleeping.


She gives him a smile, her nose wrinkling rather cutely. "Depends! We're too old to be dealing with this shit is one of my favorite thoughts to have as of late." As he settles down upon the bench, she slips a little closer, one arm draping over his shoulder, her chin resting upon the one closest to her so that she could see just beneath the rim of ruby lenses. "It's not the telepathy, no." She admits, her jaw tensing. She never really showed anyone what she's seen, save for Xavier. Nor told anyone what she 'knows'. It was her own little secret that's shared with the greatest mind in the mansion.

"Though there are times, when I am able to sleep and dream, I could see yours." There was a little shrug given, one that was playful. "But no. It's not the telepathy. It's something that I.. not me did that keeps me up at night. And the consequences of it all." Her hand waves in a blasé manner, though there was a little temptation to show him.


With a shake of his head, Scott smirks. "You think?" he retorts, with a touch of sarcasm layered within. "Calvin, he's seen so much. Like Rachel. Nate. They all…" He pauses for a moment, considering Rachel. How much he finds he misses her, when he allows himself to think on it, which he just doesn't let himself do often.

"You know, it's the 'shit' they've seen that drives a guy like Calvin to make such a ridiculous suggestion." He turns to look at Jean. "The X-Men? Selling their own brand of street drug? The idea is preposterous, and yet, where he comes from, it's not even something to bat an eye at. Worse thing is, Jean, I get it." He looks away, frowning deeply. "Just like Partisan's suggestion, killing those cops who might one day man the mutant detection devices down in Metropolis. I get it. It makes tactical sense. The morality of it all though, it's… well, I can't even comprehend that."

Yet he can comprehend removing his glasses and leveling the entire mansion's grounds, not to mention murdering countless CADMUS agents, because well… someone had fired a missile at his school and killed the love of his life. That's justified, and most people would agree. But killing cops? Selling drugs? That's not?

With that off his chest, Scott looks back over to Jean, moving to rest a hand on her forearm. He doesn't expect or even really want a response, because there is no answer that could satisfy all of the questions. "What… what was it?" he asks quietly.


The retort causes her to roll her chin against his shoulder, her head finally lifting and drawing back as she slides away, to watch him in full viewing of his rant. She doesn't say anything, she just listens. More importantly, she just feels. She didn't have to put in an effort, because for her? She could easily read him when there is no one else around. "Do you get it because you feel that there is no other way, Scott? Because there's always another way, you know that. We all know that. Our thoughts, solutions can't be because we are from a different era or time, or because we're a product of a certain upbringing.." She flexes her hand a little, then grits her teeth. But she gets it. As much as she could say she doesn't, she does.

There were other horrors that she thinks about but fails to speak them into existence. It just may happen.

The flexed hand now smooths through her hair in thought, her gaze gone a little distant, the hand upon her forearm grabbed as she fully, and completely opens herself to him and allows him to see and feel..

A car crash, a young girl dead in the street, the sound of a scream and being pulled in..
But yet a guiding hand..
And silence..
That same hand lifting and splitting the psyche apart.. that otherwordly feeling.. the encompassing power..
The expanse of space, the pain of it all, loss..
The momentary heat of the sun as it moves down the flute of her throat..
The billions of screams and suffering soon after, snuffed out just as their natural light was..
And more importantly, the very power that still lingers like a hand on a back that pushes deeper; a death grip upon the heart that promises so much more power as long as there is a willingness and acceptance.

To fight such a thing that tugs and pulls and is connected to her very being, it keeps her awake at night. A desire untapped that is often quelled with a kiss or a hand upon her forearm that grabs her and brings her back to the now. It was all passed and shared if it was accepted, and eased back with a gentle tug and pull to make the withdraw of such a sharing moment easier.

But Jean would never make light of anyone else's situation, there was no 'mine' is worse than 'yours', it was just is. And that is what kept her up most nights when he was gone. And often times? When he was there. "I get it, Scott." She finally admits. "I get all of it."


"Of course there's another way," Scott answers, half-smirking toward Jean in a way that only best friends can do. It's one of those 'you dumbass' mixed with 'sometimes I need reminded of this' sort of combos. "It's just, you know, how much time do we spend deliberating when we could just be out there, kicking ass, being reckless, saving lives and to hell with what may happen afterward, for better or worse."

He shakes his head in wonderment at the bullshit of it all. For when the X-Men are cautious, they're told they didn't act quickly enough, and when the X-Men rush in, they're told they should have been more cautious.

Leading this team? It's a real bitch.

Scott is not quite expecting the answer to his question to come so vividly, or telepathically. He grimaces. Put succinctly, it's the most he can do, considering the weight of everything that is suddenly revealed to him, broken up but connected enough to deliver its story and meaning with far more detail than he'd have ever wished for.

The grimace fades, just as his sense of feeling or temporal reckoning goes. Deep within, he finds himself afraid; afraid to be with her, afraid of what she could become, afraid of upsetting her and being party to the release of the cosmic entity. Conflicting with that fear is a visceral need to be there, not simply because he's wanted her for so long, but because he loves her; because he could never leave her side, even after learning that she was party to genocide. No, not genocide; extinction.

Lips part, a breath is taken, and his fingers loosen their white-knuckled grip upon her arm. The only thing he's able to say comes out with a self-depreciating sense of irony, for anything else he might have sounded would have been trite.

"At least some… inter-galactic lawyer hasn't tried to put you on trial for it."


"Being who we are, and following a mad-man in a wheel chair or an equally as mad man who fires concussive blasts from his eyes has it's merits and drawbacks." It was a joke, she was sure Xavier would 'tsk' or give her that narrow eyed stare if he heard that. And chances are? He did.

Though, it is a wonder if she could actually feel that deep down fear? For it was unsettling to her. His fear matched and mingled with her own, for she kept him at by and tried to indirectly sacrifice herself for the name of 'good' so that she wouldn't have to feel.. and now that she has? Would she so easily give it up without a fight?

Instead of withdrawing from him, she closes the gap to slide arms around his middle in a hug, her head resting upon his shoulders as his words draw out, the simple thought of yet playing upon her mind until she just breaks out into laughter.

It was ironic, really. It's a wonder that any one of them aren't in jail. "Christ, we're hypocrites, Scott. True blue hypocrites." Her the biggest one of them all.


The most troubling thing is, Scott doesn't regret killing those CADMUS soldiers. He regrets the ruckus he caused, the damage to the lawn, the potential for it to all blow back on them, the influence it's undoubtedly had on the students and his teammates. But, deep down inside, he's glad those bastards are dead, and that's a demon that only he can wrestle with. He's ashamed of it, but he doesn't yet regret his actions.

He'll likely wrestle with it for the rest of his life, even if he ever becomes the leader that Nate knew his other self to be.

He scoffs at her last, even though he warmly accepts the embrace and draws her in. "We shouldn't be," he remarks, a word that perhaps will one day blossom from an offhand remark into the beacon of light that will put him at ease with himself. But that is not for today.

"We shouldn't stay here much longer," he murmurs. "Some hoodlum will try to mug us, and we'll just become hypocrites all over again."


Something inside of her wanted to tell him that he was wrong. They should be. But, she was in that mode of self loathing that she couldn't see the bigger picture. Of his actions, of others, and her own. Especially her own. However, she put herself on trial the most and currently has no defense of her actions. As for now? So be it.

She lifts her head to press a soft kiss to his cheek, allowing herself that moment of closeness before she grunts, pulling herself upright to stand and give a slight stretch. She has that feeling, deep down, that she could sleep tonight. And it was going to feel great.

"Let's fly home, Slim. Quicker. Faster. Plus I want to hypocrite you all.. night.. long.." She stares for a moment, frowning. Bad choice of words. Her flirting sucked. Really, really sucked.


Rising to his feet, Scott turns to follow her. The idea of flying home sounds fun. But then, she has to go and… drop that trainwreck on him.

Scott just looks at Jean, fighting off the smirk. "Isn't that Lionel Ritchie?" he quips, before taking her by the hand and gesturing forward. "Up, up, and away, my love."

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