Socratic Learning At It's Best

June 08, 2015:

Debriefing after the meeting, May, Fenris and Zee chat

Shadowcrest - Gotham

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NPCs: None.

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Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Fenris had remained at Shadowcrest. He'd sensed that Zee might need some calming before they really got to the meat of the matter. May, if she stayed would have gotten one of those looks from Fenris. One of the looks taht said 'I know you want to talk to me'. First things first though is getting the atmosphere back to a place where a conversation can be had at all.


Melinda May has opted to remain as well, her presence all but completely silent. She's content to let Zee sort things out in hr own mind.


Zee doesn't need calming. She needs reassurance…. her confidence has been shaken several times in the last couple of weeks and Kara's judgement of her, the argument in the Library, has rocked the foundation she had just started to rebuild.

"Do you want some tea, Fenris, Agent May?" The pot is still warm… and Richard will be by soon to check on it, anyway.


"I'd love some tea." Fenris settles in on his seat and watches Zee go back and forth. He'll wait for her to settle before he continues. "So, would anyone like to tell me what I walked into this afternoon? I'm used to wolf packs biting and snarling to establish an order but that wasn't what I saw."


Melinda May nods to accept some tea from Zee as she also finally returns to a seat. "That, was an example of a communication break down. Kara was insisting that killing humans is unacceptable and she won't tolerate it, and Pezzini and Manning insisting that they will defend themselves in any way they feel is necessary. Kara misinterpreted that to mean they were going to happily trundle along murdering anyone and everyone in their path, and Manning misunderstood Kara's words, and now believes she'll attack them in the middle of a battle if they have to use lethal force to defend themselves."


Tea done and distributed, Zee settles on the couch and considers "I'm not sure, Fenris. And May, Kara used some pretty strong words. Even I took that way." The teen mage looks more than a little annoyed "Personally Fenris, I'm not sure I would trust her in the field with me. I know what we're up against and … as much as I might not like it, sometimes lethal force is appropriate. It's not black and white and Kara seems to think it's that easy."


"Kara doesn't get to decide for you." Fenris says quite simply. "But neither does anyone get to decide for her. I'll ask no one to violate their conscious in the defense of this world. But you're not wrong in thinking that this will require death. Whatever the rest of you choose, I will continue as I have already begun. There is no life, nor any combination of lives, not mine, not yours, not anyone elses, that is more important than what we seek."


Melinda May nods her agreement with Zee's words. "Then you'll end up being the one that has to be watchful, Fenris. Because any time you put her black and white point of view in the same place as those of us that will do anything we have to to keep this planet safe, this same butting of heads is going to happen. Every time. I've seen it happen before."


"And that's exactly the point, Fenris." Zee clenches her jaw "May, Sara and Paul don't tell me to kill, they leave that to my discretion. Kara is DEMANDING they don't … and told us, all of us, that she would take action if we did." Zee might be ready to cry about this …. "I want to like her Fenris, she was my friend. But she questioned my judgement, my integrity… " and that had stung "No one told her she had to kill, we would happily accept it if she disabled and detained."


"I have a solution for you then. Work with those you feel you can trust. I've drawn the membership of this group from diverse sources knowing full well you would not all get along all the time. If I wanted harmony, I'd have gone and found a commune." The Old Wolf makes a face. "But I do intend to speak with her. Inasmuch as I expect her conscious to be resepcted, I expect yours to be as well."

"Does it sting, Zee, being questioned?"


"Kara was the one failing to respect others in this instance, Fenris." May takes a deep breath then a sip of her tea. "And I think it comes from her not being human. She doesn't live every moment of every day wondering if stepping out to cross a street, or turning on the kitchen faucet, or drinking a glass of water will be the thing that takes her life. She's never been human, she's never been … mortal. That's going to create a very fundamental difference in mindset." She looks over at Zee. "Kara's questioning might have been reasonable enough, but her refusal to even consider that others can't exist as she does is a problem."


"Not to be questioned, Fenris." Zee shakes her head "The manner in which it was done, I think." Mays words resonate with the young mage "That's what I suggested to her, that she walk a bit in our shoes before she makes judgements like that."

Taking a deep breath, Zee looks between the two "I've been challenged so much in the last few weeks, months even, that I know I'm not the person I was… but… fundamentally, I still believe that I'm a good person and she challenged that… and that hurt."


"Get used to it." Fenris says. "I don't say that to be unkind, understand. I told Primal Force today that I charge them with no ranks, and that's true. But I'm also not blind. I know who has organized and led many of our efforts. When you lead you will be questioned. Rightly, wrongly, fairly and unfairly. Stay in this game and it's something you're simply going to have to deal with. A lot. Now… having said that, how do you both intend to deal with it? May, you have to deal with Pezinni and Manning most directly, so I'm curious as to your thoughts. And Zee, well…" She has to deal with all the things.


Melinda May nods to Fenris. "I plan to. But I also very much expect both of them will be very reluctant to work with Kara after this. She all but directly insulted them both to their faces." She then frowns faintly. "She essentially called us all murderers, Fenris. I don't take that kind of insult lightly. I can still work with her, but I won't trust her. Not anymore."


"I'm not sure, Fenris." Zee blows out a breath "You've told me that before and I don't lead so much as a collaborate. I know I have weaknesses and May, Sara and Paul have the training, Jes has a killer instinct." she shrugs a little "I just have drive to get things done." Nodding slowly at Mays words, the teen mage agrees "I won't trust Kara to act rationally, but I'll try to work with her, because maybe it will help."


"Do what you feel like you must. I'll talk to her. But honestly, I do expect a team composed of putative adults to be able to resolve differenes of this manner. And I am most displeased that I was called upon to put everyone in their corners." Fenris looks, and sounds, most displeased. "I'm also a little displeased that this was happening in your house, Zee. They're your guests. Why did you let them do that. In your house your rule should be absolute."


"I didn't call you, Fenris." Zee's back stiffens. "And I was just about to ask them to leave, when you arrived. Given your arrival, I thought it might be good for you to actually witness what I was dealing with." She sighs "It happened so quickly, too, I really wasn't prepared. And then I tried to reason with Kara, put my position forward …." she shakes her head "It doesn't matter, I let you down… "


"That is the third time you have expressed such an opinion to me. I have never said that you have let me down. Nor have I ever felt that that was true." Fenris rumbles as he sips his tea. "But you may have let yourself down."


"Constantly" Zee drops her head to look at her tea. "It's true, I'm disappointed that it came to that. But… I'm not sure it could have gone any better." That and Kara calling Fenris to something that the teen mage had organised… was disempowering… but Zee supposes she'll have to get used to that.


Fenris drums his fingers on the table a little and then stands up. "Well, so it happened, and it happened quickly. You've not had to deal with it before. So what will you do if and when it comes up again?"


"I'm not sure." Zee ponders that for a moment "They all deserve their say, Fenris. Ask them to stop or leave, I guess." May had actually suggested Kara go …. just before Fenris had arrived.


"Everyone needs a say." Fenris nods in agreement. "But not all things are appropriate to say in all venues and a host is well within his or her rights to demand that guests comport themselves with some civility." Certainly had that happened in Fenris house there would have been some inviting people to come outside. Or dropping them down portals to nowhere particularly nice. "May I ask what the purpose of the meeting was?"


"Just a catch up. You mentioned it a couple of weeks ago, I said I would do it." Zee regards the Old Wolf. "I did invite you" a little defensive… but only a bit "I just shared the information we gleaned, they shared what they knew" which surprisingly wasn't a lot "and I thought it would be appropriate for everyone to know who the team was."


"Mmmm." Fenris nods slowly. "Good for teams to get together yes. Well, most of the time. Clearly this one has some issues to work through." He folds his arms and works his jaw a little. "Tempers frayed, I can see that. Why is an excellent question and unfortunately it's not one I particularly trust anyone to give me a straight answer to… exactly because tempers frayed."


Zee drops her head. She was one of them… she can't say anything to that. "What do you want me to do?"


"What I expect anyone to do, Zatanna. Learn and keep going. Even if the only thing you learned tonight is that sometimes guests will make asses of themselves. Though I rather suspect you learned more than that, yes?" The Old Wolf cants his head.


"I think so, Fenris" Zee glances up "But I won't know till a similar situation presents itself, to see if I can really put that learning in action." A small smile touches her lips "Did you want more tea?" because tea makes everything better.


"Then the lesson isn't wasted. And yes, I'll take another cup of tea. Do you feel a bit better?" The tall, lean man watches Zee carefully from where he stands, almost as if regarding her in ways that aren't strictly connected to sight.


"I do, Fenris. I was more upset than angry" Zee goes to make more tea, looking curious at the way Fenris is looking at her. She'll leave that till later. "It's just been a big couple of weeks."


Fenris takes another seat and nods rather tiredly. "So I gathered, yes. Seems I'll have to be moving a bit more directly than I planned. After we finish here and I go work some aggression out. Fifteen hundred years ago I'd have killed everyone in the room for taking those tones with me."

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