Problems With Father Time?

December 13, 2015:

After hearing about Hax's issues, Fenris calls people together

Fenris' House - New York

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Fenris… hears things. He's been around for a while and he knows a lot of people. Some of them are ordinary, some of them are not. And sometimes those people tell him things when he comes around asking. This time he's heard that a certain mage has been… aging faster than he should. So what did he do about that?

Call Pepper Potts. Pepper, you see, is a woman of boundless compassion and considerable resources both of which the God Wolf is fairly sure will be needed here. More than that, he wouldn't do to Pepper what he's about to do to Zee and Hax.

Which is open portals right beneath them and drop both of them onto his couch.


Hax drops in and lands on with a resounding *thud* on his behind. "I swear whoever keeps opening portals whenever I'm taking a sh—" he stops mid sentence when he realizes that he's sitting (well squatting) in the presence of the God Wolf.

"Fenris" Hax says as politely as he can without adding the irritation of being dragged from the toilet mid-pee. He looks to be about 40 years in age now with his hair slowly turning silver and his face increasingly showing the marks of age (not necessarily wisdom, this is Hax afterall).


Zee was practicing with a waster when the portal opens under her. Landing on Fenris' couch, mid form … waster swinging in whistling blow that might connect with Hax's head, she manages to pull it just time.

"Fenris, you rang?" It's unusual for the God-Wolf to do this, that's normally Illyana's thing … which might explain why Zee isn't surprised at being transported, just a little startled at nearly hitting the older man sitting next to her.

The bruises and scratches that can be seen on her arms and face, the black eye that's starting to form when she misjudged a swing of her sash whip, are all testimony to how hard the young woman is working.

Looking at the older man next to, her eyes narrow - as much for his position as he looks … "Hax!?"


After chatting with Fenris about his plans, she gathers what resources she can quickly — which mostly entails picking up her tablet — and then she's on her way to the Old Wolf's residence. Nice place. Modest. Comfortable. And yes, she thought to pack a thermos of freshly made tea. Well, it was that or leave it behind.

Just a few moments after Zee arrives (abruptly) in Fenris' house, there's a knock on his door, and Pepper waits politely for admittance.


"You mean this has happened before?" Fenris leaves Hax to ponder on that, and pull his pants up, while he answers the door and lets Pepper in. Hopefully he's accomplished the latter by the time she actually comes into view.

"Miss Potts. Good of you to come by on such short notice. I'm just about to begin the proceedings." The way he says that while looking at a large leather bound book weighty enough to have been used as catapult ammunition by the Romans may give Normand pause.

Either way, Fenris picks up said book as he comes back into the room. "Hello Normand. I'd say you're looking well but you're rather not. I hear you and Father Time aren't exactly getting along right now. Care to enlighten us?" Yes Zee is here for a reason. We'll get to that shortly.


Hax pulls his pants up and reaches for a nearby table to pull himself on to his feet. "Not many people are priviledged to that information." he says while settling into a overstuffed chair (he's kinda old now he needs to rest)

The old mage sighs heavily and looks at Zee with eyes full of shame and disgrace. "Hello, Zee. Sorry you had to see me like… this." Hax wiggles his fingers and a magical interface projection containing what looks like vital readings of his body appear in front of Hax.

The mage in a somber tone addresses the Wolf God's question "Yes. I am dying. Well, we're all dying I'm just taking the express check-out lane." he thinks back to his actions that led to his predicament. "I… sorta had to sacrifice a portion of my life to" he thinks of Brin's lifeless body "bring someone back."

Hax points to a particular section of the vital signs which appears to be a bar graph showing some form of output. "My ability to maintain my normal life-force has been compromised. In terms of a battery I have depleted a great deal of my energy while simultaneously lowering my capacity to put out energy to maintain my body's functions. As a result my body is reaching a state of equilibrium with my energy state." the mage settles back into his chair

"AI and I predict that I will reach equilibrium at around the age of 85."


"Hello Miss Potts!" Zee walks over to hug the redhead, slightly sweaty from her work out and then moves to hug Fenris, before pushing her hair out of her face.

"You … did … what?" She says slowly as Hax explains, horror dawning on her face as she looks between the God Wolf and the rune mage.


Pepper Potts offers Fenris a smile as she enters his home, then looks at Zee and the gentleman that isn't instantly recognizeable to her. She returns Zee's hug readily enough, then looks at her with a faint frown while brushing at the young woman's cheek near that black eye. "What happened here?" She then looks at the greying man, who really, doesn't appear to be very much older than she herself is. "I'm thinking that some tea is in order?" She offers the thermos to no one in particular.


Fenris will take that thermos. And pour its contents into at least two cups. One goes to Pepper because, well, its her tea. "So to continue the metaphor, Normand, you need a recharge and pronto or we're going to be taking you down to the cosmic Jiffy Lube and swapping you out before you corrode our terminals." Sometimes metaphors should not be extended.

"You will be happy to know that I do know of several ways this can be done. Unfortunately the simplest of the ways that does not involve mass murder requires the help of everyone in this room… and access to Stark Tower. Actually, Pepper, we should talk about that… since this is the second time Stark Tower is coming up with regards to things that I should like to do… Zee, you and I will be taking a trip, if he agrees to this."


Hax is intrigued by Fenris' statement regarding there being a way. "Wolf, I have looked into every possible way imaginable. Either I prey on the unsuspecting for the rest of my natural life or I recieve a massive amount of lifeforce WILLINGLY from another."

Hax slumps into his chair (very bad for posture mind you) "But that would only put someone else in my shoes. I don't want that."

Suddenly Parasite takes form as a dark ball of energy similar to AI's normal form. "I think we should here what he has to say." the manifestation bows his ocular lense as a token of respect to Fenris "Nice to finally meet you in person, Great Devourer."


Zee winces as little as Pepper brushes her cheek "A mishap when I was training, Miss Potts. I misjudged the swing on a whip and hit myself." She looks very sheepish about that. Taking one of the cups that Fenris pours, Zee sips the tea as he explains his thoughts. Stark Towers has come up in discussion a few times and she's not too surprised by Fenris' announcement.

When Parasite appears, the teen mage nearly spits her tea out … "Hax… what have you done?" This … seems to becoming a thing.


Pepper Potts just nods to Zee and smiles almost knowingly. It's not like she hasn't had her own share of clumsy-related mishaps when working out. Claiming a seat near the greying man, she sips at the cup she's given as well, and amazingly reacts more calmly to Parasite than Zee did. Maybe she's just more used to weird. She considers Fenris' words for a moment, and then realization hits. "You're going to want access to the arc reactor, aren't you, Fenris?"


"Well the ritual I have in mind does involve a healthy dose of 'lightning' and I'm not on very good terms with Zeus." Nor does he dare use weather magic. Not now. The Atlanteans pretty much effed that one up for everyone. "Also I want to use the tower as a mystical radio transmitter of healing." Beat. "Plus twelve. But we can talk about that later. It's another matter."

Fenris eyes the parasite as it appears. "Ah. I was wondering when you were going to make yourself known." He does not say it's good to meet it. He knows what it is. And it knows what he is. No matter how much good he does, the Old Wolf is the Destroyer. He can't be anything else. Just pretend to be.

"Those aren't quite the only two options, Normand. You can use the magic of the earth itself. Ley Lines channel what is functionally the life of the planet. You can recharge yourself from them. Unfortunately they're not… compatible. The aid of a number of things will be required. 'The Spark of Prometheus' for starts, that's where the arc reactor comes into play. The blood and tears of a highborn lady…" Pepper gets a look here. "The power of a wizard… plus a catelyst that I'll need some help getting. And even then it's not safe. For it to work you'll have to wrestle the spirit of the earth itself to tear the life you need from it while the rest of us contain the spell."


Hax is speechless. More importantly the mage begins to shed a couple of tears "You would do all of this. For me?"

Parasite lets out a sound that reminds one of a tone of mockery. "That's your plan?" it exclaims "Have him wrestle a being essentially god-like in the HOPES of gaining what he needs? Little mage what the Devourer is suggesting is suicidal. Why not do what many have done before." Parasite's voice darkens and deepens to something much more malovent sounding "Make a pact." Parasite referring to it's progenitor the Dark Force. "It won't ask for much. You've already proven to be willing to give it all. Why not give it all once more? In return you will gain what you've always wanted. Power. And with that power you could extend your mortal lifespan and cheat death." Parasite gives the aura of a malicious smile "And not this death you are currently facing. I know what hunts you. What has been hunting you all your life. And when it comes, you'll want that power."


"Arc Reactor?" Zee's heard of it in passing, but she's only a passing familiarity… but it starts to become clear as Fenris explains. "And this will work, with me … depowered as I am?" She's curious about the catalyst he mentions.

"Of course we would… and will… Hax." Her voice is sure, reassuring. "I wouldn't do anything less." Blue eyes narrowing as Parasite speaks "And he'll have that power, through his friends … " the teen challenges the construct "and we won't exact a price to do so… "


Pepper Potts reaches over to put a hand on Normand's wrist. "Fenris would not be asking us to help you if didn't think you're worth it." Her eyes flick toward Parasite and then back to the man, clearly dismissing the annoying little voice of negativity. "He also wouldn't suggest doing this ritual if he didn't think you'd benefit from it. I'm not saying it'll be easy. But we'll do our best to help." She's already mentally setting aside what Fenris said her role in this would be. She's still finding it difficult to think that anyone believes her to be highborn, considering she's just a kid from Connecticut.

She sits back again, and pulls her tablet from her bag. "JARVIS, do you think Tony would be upset if we borrowed about … one point twenty-one gigawatts from the arc reactor?"


The God-Wolf's eyes narrows in annoyance as the Parasite starts. Unfortunately for the Parasite Fenris is a creature both willing and able to kick annoying guests out of his home. He flicks a hand out and power crackles in the air about him. "Exilium." He snaps as the power focuses on the manifestation. "I abjure thee. Go!"

Fenris is not a mage, but he is easily one of the most magically potent creatures that frequents the Tri-City area. He's not to be trifled with. "Friendship is not, I fear, magic Zee. But there is a good chance if we can assemble everything we need. Unfortunately for this to work I'm going to need you to go to Asguard while Pepper prepares things, assuming she's willing to do so. And Hax, you would do well to make arrangments yourself. I would advise, if nothing else, a ritual purification so that the earthsoul doesn't take too harshly to you."


Parasite's form flickers out of existence but before it completely disappears, (Deep, rumbly voice) "You cannot save the mage, Devourer! For one greater than you has already laid claim to his essence!"

Hax sighs "I suppose thanks are in order. Parasite is a nuisance." In regards to the purification ritual "Purifying myself of it is something I have already tried. I do not know how to remove it from what you said once BETWEEN my soul".

Anticipating Zee's question, "When I battled Yin he left a trace of the Dark Force within me. Until now it had felt content to stay hidden from everyone. But it would appear it is becoming more aggressive in its bid for my soul or whatever the Dark Force wants."


Friendship is Magic… just ask the little ponies… but Zee understands what Fenris is saying and simply nods at the God Wolf, she had meant magical friends but that's ok. She's a little distracted by the feel of Fenris' power … one day she might get hers back."You want me to go to Asgard, Fenris?" That's … not what she had expected "On my own, I suppose …. " she's aware of how he feels about the place "And what am I to do there?" She's not worried about getting there or back, she trusts Fenris.

"One point twenty one gigawatts, Miss Potts?" she casts an amused glance at the redhead "And I suppose JARVIS will tell us we need to land on the tower doing eighty eight miles per hour."

"There are other rituals you can do to purify yourself, apart from worrying about … Parasite." Hax's explanation gets another narrow eyed look "I'm sorry, Hax. I let you down. I … should have scanned you more thoroughly when you were injured." Whether she would have found something is questionable.


"That amount of electricity is negligible, Miss Potts, though I do know that Sir would wish to know the purpose of requesting any reasonably large amount for a single use." The cultured British voice emitting from the tablet might seem completely normal to most anyone, but a person with enough knowledge or skill might pick up the synthetic undertones to the AI's voice.

Pepper tries her best to not snicker at her own (lame) joke, especially when Zee calls her on it. "Something like that." Okay, back to business. "Accessing the arc reactor's resources are easy enough, and I can speak with Security to grant us access to the reactor room itself. What other preparations were you wanting me to help with, Fenris?"


"Oh it gets better." Fenris says dryly. "I want you to go to Asgard to talk to someone I once tried to kill and ask them for something." The only god whom he vaguely feels bad about having quarreled with. Well. Goddess. "Perhaps Pepper can come. She's quite a good negotiator. Beyond that, Pepper, we'll need to… have you present for the ritual itself. You will be a key component and your goodwill as well, presuming Normand and his parasite don't exhaust it by then." Hax gets a rather pointed look.


Hax reacts to Jarvis' comments. "Oh, thats an artificial intelligence. Very rare to hear one so… advanced. Tony Stark must be bounds and leaps ahead of Cortana and Siri."

Sensing that Zee might be partially blaming herself for Parasite, "Zee, what happened to me wasn't your fault. It was very much mine. Parasite was my demon for trying to pick a fight with powers against I could not hope to contend." The old rune-mage begins to sag in his chair. Being old is a real drain on the energy levels. "Hm. Goodwill? If I'm to wrestle a planet god I'll probably be seeing more ill omens than anything else."

"But" sensing the shortness of his life approaching "I suppose this is my only shot at restoring my life without killing untold thousands." the old rune mage looks up from behind his silver-rimmed specs. "I'm in."


"I know that, Hax." Zee speaks to the ageing "That was your battle, but … maybe I could have detected it sooner, so you could arm yourself better." She's well aware that they all have their challenges to meet and this is part of Hax's journey.

Fenris gets an amused look "You send me of the most interesting of quests, Fenris. I can and will do that… and Miss Potts company will be welcome." Zees already thinking about how to approach this … she doesn't /have/ to mention Fenris, right?"

The group is gathered in Fenris' living room and Hax has aged visibly.


Why exactly does Wanda show up now? Who knows? Wanda certainly doesn't but this is what happens when chaos is your guiding force. And having the (temporary) power she has, there is probably no place she cannot end up in. The scarlet clad witch is suddenly there and looking a bit embarrassed at intruding. "Hello" she offers via heavily accented greeting. "I hope I am not interrupting. I just came to…" She quickly looks around at who is there. "…see Zatanna." It doesn't sound convincing, even to Wanda.


Pepper Potts startles when Wanda just appears amongst them, but is good enough to not spill her cup of tea. "Uh… hello. Oh, and Zee, I'll be happy to go with you. How long will it take? I might need to do some rescheduling at work." She glances down at her tablet's screen, then after tapping at it a couple of times offers the tablet across to Hax. "Here. JARVIS wanted to ask you a few questions." Probably because of that Cortana and Siri comment.


"Ah. Wanda. I've been expecting you." Fenris, the one person who might be expected to react poorly to unexpected arrivals, does not. "You've met Normand have you not? He's gotten himself into some trouble and is going to need some help. I'm going to need to divert some ley lines. Zee doesn't have the juice for it right now. I could do it by myself but it'd probably be fairly abrupt and possibly destructive, at least in the timeframe we have. Mind pitching in?"

"Pepper it shouldn't take more than a day or so but that largely depends on how things go on that side and how Idun feels about the whole thing. She'll have to be handled carefully, most likely." And he can't even send the one other Asgardian he knows and trusts. Long story. With Zee willing that should about cench things.


Hax is startled by Wanda's sudden appearance. "Try not to startle me, I'm not as young as I once was." Hax takes the tablet from Pepper and begins to marvel at Jarvis as if he were a cool toy. "I'd always dreamed of creating a mechanical interface like this. Just never seemed to have the time."


And there's Wanda … Zee jumps just a little as the woman appears and then smiles "Well you found me…" There's a slight look of concern for the woman, but it's fleeting. Zee knows what's happened to Wanda and she knows that it is her trial to bear.

"Idun?" Zee's eyebrows rise "I have one of her golden apples in Shadowcrest. Could I use that as a peace offering?" chewing her bottom lip, she considers "I'd have to seek permission from the person who asked me to safe guard it, but I think we'd both be happier with it gone."

Truly, by the look she's casting to Pepper, a trip to Asgard might be like a trip to the candy store… silly mageling.


"I have met Normand" Wanda nods to Fenris. "Brinley told me his story so I did intend to come and see him. I just didn't know where he was" she smiles in apology. "So you have something decided? I can help with whatever you wish" she nods, "But remember that all power comes from somewhere. It may be an infinite universe but its power, both magical and mundane, is the same as it was on that first day. There is nothing outside the 'system' to add to it." Wanda stops talking and after a few moments asks, "Did I just say all that?"

Wanda offers a smile to Zatanna before trying a silent look of 'I didn't really come to see you and I'm not sure why I'm here'. That she can express all that with eyes, eyebrows and nose twitching is a lost art. "So what would you like me to do, Fenris?"

Pepper Potts seems mostly unperturbed. And perhaps she isn't. Maybe in Pepper's brain, a trip to Asgard would be like a trip to Buckingham Palace. Been there, done that, everyone was very polite and kind, but the dogs were brats. "Well, let me schedule out an extra day, just in case. Did you get that, JARVIS?"

The tablet in Hax's hands speaks up again in that same British voice. "Affirmative, Miss Potts. Your assistant has been notified and your schedule is being rearranged. Congratulations. You have your entire Monday cleared." And truly, when was the last time THAT happened?


"Do you have Idun's or Eris'?" There are a lot of golden apples out there and not all of them do the same thing. "You'll want Idun's for this. We want something to bring life, not discord." There's quite enough of that already, thank you. "I'll arrange to send Pepper and Zee to Asgard tomorrow and Wanda tomorrow evening if you could meet in Central Park we have some arcane landscaping to do." Diverting the course of a couple of different Ley Lines so that they intersect under Stark Tower without causing a mysical riot or blowing up several city blocks is going to be an undertaking. Ordinarily it might be beyond even the combined might of Wanda and Fenris but with Wanda's newfound power… they might pull it off.

"As for you Normand… prepare yourself."


Hax nods and thanks Fenris and company then pulls himself out of his chair with a grunt. Turning to Pepper. "I'm afraid I'm not feeling very magicky today Miss Potts. Could I trouble you for a lift?"


"I'll check, Fenris." Zee states. A peace offering for a haughty goddess that Fenris tried to kill? Sounds like a good thing to her.

"Miss Potts, I'll come to your office, we can go from there, if you've no objections." Looking between Fenris and Wanda, she experiences a moment of sadness … not so long ago, she could have helped there … but on the other hand … Asgard!

And yes, Wanda… Zee knows …


Zatanna shouldn't feel too bad. When the choice is between Asgard and…Central Park, the temporarily ex-mage got the good deal. "Central Park" Wanda repeats to ensure she will remember it. "Tomorrow night. I will be there." She offers a hopefully reassuring smile to Fenris before glacing around. "Nice to see you all again. We will fix you, Hax. If this doesn't work then I have another idea." Which may get the world worried.


Pepper Potts smiles at Normand (she doesn't know him as Hax) and offers her now empty tea cup back to Fenris. "I would be delighted. Zee, would you like to accompany us as well?" There's also the whole 'must wear precisely the correct outfit to meet with alien royalty to deal with. Luckily, Pepper has access to clothiers who will outfit both women. Gleefully, if they're told that their garments will be showcased off-world. "Should we be going now, or is there anything else?"


"I think that will do. You're all welcome to stay for dinner of course… unless you have places to be." He did pull Normand in mid pee. Least he can do is offer food at the end of it. And to everyone else as well. "I'll be contacting you all soon, if you go." Otherwise… time to eat.

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