Live Fast, Die Young

January 11, 2016:

Betsy and Jean do what they always do, talk!

Jean's Office

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Emma Frost, Scott Summers, Nate Grey

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Betsy and Jean. Failing all else, there's always the two of them. Even after international incidents and the sometimes brutal internal drama of the cloistered Institute, it's rare that the two girls are ever apart long.

Of course, that usually means Betsy's working around Jean's office schedule, which means in this case she's sitting upside down in the high-backed chair she likes best, boots hanging off the back of the chair and her hair spilling to the ground as her head hangs off the cushioned seat.

She doens't seem bothered by the inverted position, holding her tablet in one hand and flicking the screen left and right with her free fingers. Naturally, she's clothes shopping.

"So did Charles say yea or nay on letting me expand my wardrobe space?" Betsy asks Jean, pausing to add a summer dress to her wishlist.

It's true! It barely is even a week and after a body snatching mutant and the talks of Hank leaving Jean was always there near by or around Betsy; their orbits happen to circle. Perhaps it was a psychic thing, for it's true that Emma shouldn't be too far behind. It would either be Jean or Emma, Emma or Betsy, Betsy and Jean.. the combination could go on and on and on. Though, the way Betsy sits now does irk's Jean's nerve a touch, her eyes staring at the way her feet just hangs off the back of -her- favorite chair, her lips quirking in a slight twist as she gives a shake of her head to leave bygones to bygones.

"He said nay." She says nonchalantly. "The school is growing every day as well as new teachers joining the food. He said that he knows that you have places all over the city, so just use those." She smirks a little, knowing doggone well Charles' words weren't that crass. But, it was filled with elegance, wise words, a soft letdown which was pampered with a british style.

"Bah," Betsy mutters. "I suppose I can put some of my seasonal attire in my apartment, for the nonce. Such a bloody nuisance getting to it in April, though."

She lowers her tablet, peering at Jean. "Valentine's day isn't far off," she points out slyly. "Do you and Scott have plans laid out yet? I hope he's got something more ambitious than 'Netflix and chill' planned," she remarks, dryly. One purple-painted lip curls into a self-disgusted moue.

"Then again, I'd probably maim someone for even having a date lined up for the fourteenth," she laments in a mutter.

Jean looks up from her paperwork, hiding a ghost of a smile that prunes upon her lips, her gaze shooting back down as she leans back within the chair to unbutton her sports coat. Her eyes flick to the ceiling, her hand reaching out for paper balls that fly from her garbage can, catching them within her grip as she idly and slowly juggles them in a circular pattern. "Ugh.."

"We tried the date thing already." Jean states. "We get to this really, really nice restuarant, salads, the finiest wine, a nice warm rooftop in the middle of winter with chandilier lights. Scott in a tux and everyone else dressed to the nines and I wore an Emma'esque dress.."

And then she deadpans. "Only to get pulled away to follow an astral spectre who knocks Scott out and tries to kill me to take my body." She was still hurt about that. A lot. "So, dating. Dates. Vacations, leaving the school to relax.. all of it." She shakes her head. "Not going to happen." She snap points at her friend then, sharing the notion.

"Tar and feather, my dear. It hurts more."

"Mhm." Betsy sets her tablet atop her stomach, and stretches in a catlike fashion, letting her knuckles brush across the floor. "Well, still, you at least went /on/ a date. Granted, you had another bout of your ludicrously bad luck," Betsy concedes, "but you made it 9/10ths of the way."

She drums the back of her fingers on the hardwood, fingernails clicking softly as she drags them atop the seams in the flooring. "I haven't been on a date since Steve took me out for dinner. I didn't even get to second base," she complains, dourly. "Though for the record, he does have an ass you can bounce a dime off of." She flexes her hands in demonstration.

"So, is this it for us, then?" she asks the far wall, a bit rhetorically. "No vacations, no fancy dinners, just endless ambushes every time we go to relax somewhere?"

"Nine tenths of the way would be someone in post coitus having to save the world after stopping mid-stroke." Jean was only able to joke like this with Betsy, if anyone else heard, they would have taken a double take and checked to see if she was still who she was. Perhaps it was the lingering personality of Alpha, or the fact that she was frustrated with living a life of lack of sleep, endless nightmares, a pot to piss in and windows to throw it out of, but it'll catch if she wasn't careful.

She tries not to break out into laughter about the mention of Steve, silently agreeing with a brush of her hair away from her face, and then a sigh. One that.. well, couldn't even begins to reassure her friend.

"The only time we didn't suffer an event is when we went to England to see your brothers. I'm starting to think that our vacations should focus around London instead of home."

"There are some particular reasons for that, which regrettably I can't get into," Betsy tells Jean, her tone pointedly vague. "Suffice that there's a fine line between purchasing some breathing room and the perception of sheltering in place. We'd just end up with the same problems, except with worse weather and better tea."

And of course she makes no mention of Jaime, even to Jean— because neither of the Braddocks really know the scope of his particular challenges.

"Well, and there was Cabo," Betsy says, studying her fingernails with sudden rapt interest, her tone purposefully light and casual. Which is almost like banter from the leggy kunoichi. "Though we did risk alcohol poisoning a time or two. Mezcal," she says, shuddering.

"I could always try to pry it out of your head." Jean smirks, but she doesn't press further. Something like that wouldn't make her all that comfortable with herself, and too.. she loves Betsy way too much to even try. However, a vision of the Captain America's ass was full game. That was for certain.

"Cabo.." She licks her lips briefly, which soon turn up with a slight look of disgust, her hand even patting her stomach as she gives a slight shake of her head. "I've met a dragon who took down seafood like.. " She gestures, just the thought of that was making her green around the gills. "I think.. I'm just over seafood all together now." She lifts her brow. "Speaking of Dragons, has Emma been to see you of late?"

"Don't be bitchy," Betsy tells Jean without any real rancor in her tones. "I haven't talked to her seriously in a few days, no. I assume it's in regard to the brilliant idea to set her up as the Atlantean ambassador?" she says, cocking an eyebrow at Jean. Betsy had /not/ been in favor of that. "As long as she's not trying to rampage through them telepathically, I imagine she can't do too terribly. They're warriors— they respond well to aggression."

"Yes. Great idea, wasn't it?" This had Jean laughing. It almost felt like a prank, but replaying the image of Emma's face when Jean pretty much left her in charge, it was something that'll keep her smiling and laughing for years probably decades to come.

If she even lives that long.

"I think she'll do great, Betsy. And I think you should tag along with her to at least /make/ sure she's not tagging them all." She shrugs her shoulders faintly. "She's a business woman, business is aggressive as well as negotiations for a healthy alliance. Which is why I picked her." She rocks within her chair now, allowing the paper balls to fall limply to the ground.

"You have reservations?"

"She's a businesswoman," Betsy says, turning that argment 'for' into a point against. "Businesspeople tend to view negotiations in very black and white, short-range terms. You're effectively setting her up as an unauthorized ambassador for the human race, and Emma has a hard time accepting compromises as being a 'win' in her book."

She flicks her fingers in the air. "Oh well. That's a problem for the future. Who knows? Maybe we'll be dead by then," she says, levity returning to her tones.

She falls quite, thoughtfully. "Do you ever wonder what we'd be like if we hadn't manifested our talents?" she says, thoughts darting in odd directions. "Where we would be in life if we hadn't gone down this road?"

"And sometimes that's what negotiations need. Black and white views. What is, and what isn't. She's not an ambassador for the entire human race. She's an ambassador for the X-Men, possibly mutant kind. We all need allies. This is where it starts even though the rest of us don't know that it's there." Jean shrugs just a touch, then slightly nods. "Possibly. Dead and gone and negotiations won't matter." Jean sounded a little too glum, with that.

Though, Betsy's latest question causes her to raise her brow, her lips pursing thoughtfully as she sits up forward within her seat, her elbows pressing against the surface of her desk as she gives it a solid thought. "That's a huge, huge 'what if', Bets."

"You'd still be a blonde."

"You'd still be a nerd," Betsy rebuts, though she smiles at Jean's teasing jab. "And no, I wouldn't. I'd be two entirely different women. Maybe I'd have gone into theatre, or cinema," she remarks idly. "Of course, on the other hand, I'd also still be a world-class assassin. Travelling the world, seeing exotic sights, killing people. No, wait, that's not right— Matsu'o killed me," she says, drumming her fingertips. "So I'd be dead, /and/ a fashionista."

"I'd be a rich nerd." Jean fires back, a slight grin upon her face. "So while you'd be split in two, I'd be a rich nerd and probably -way- off of Scott's radar. In fact, I don't think I'd ever meet him. I'd probably just be with John.." She pauses a little. "Do you remember John? The Physics major from Columbia? Muscles for days, impeccably smart, handsome.. sort of bad boy of the science world type of guy? But a shit conversationalist.." She shakes her head slightly.

"We'd be married and I'd own my own lab. And then I'd see you on the street and wish I could wear your clothes." She laughs a little, then rocks back and forth. The office was cozy, no doubt. Which is why she spent most of her time inside.

"I remember threatening to psychically castrate him if I caught him peeping down my blouse again," Betsy rebuts, her tone positively Saharan. "I thought he was a wanker. But, you do have an eye for blokes," she concedes. "Shoulders. Mrpgh."

Her fingers twist into claws and then relax. Betsy tucks her legs in and swings rightside up in the seat, taking a moment to make sure her outfit— jeans, knee-high boots and a smart double-breasted bomber's jacket— all sit properly. She rests her elbow on the arm of the chair, hand cupping her chin. "My mummy and daddy would be alive," she says, wistfully. "Brian would be on his second doctorate by now. Jaime wouldn't be quite so touched in the head. I'd have finished that old Jaguar with daddy instead of letting it languish in storage all these years. Mummy would be teaching. Then again, I'd have to go through punching Prince William in the nose again."

"That's because you wore your blouse three sizes too small that day." Jean reaches out to wriggle a finger in her direction. As Betsy comiserrates about his shoulders, Jean lifts her head back and sighs. The man, he was a true adonis and had the brain to boot.

Conversation was shit, though.

Hearing Betsy talk about her parents in such a fashion had her frowning just a touch, her hands lifting to rub slightly against her cheek as she slowly nods. "My parents would have been proud of me." She says, finally. "My dad would have walked me down the isle and my mother would have cried as he gave me away.."

She grows quiet then, turning her chair just enough to stare out of the window. "We're not going to make it. Are we? We're not going to see the future as we dream it. You know, cities that are built around the cars that fly on elevated platforms and such.." She smirks a little. "Bitcoin being the main transaction of the world.." She shakes her head. "We're going to die young, Elizabeth."

Betsy gets up and moves to Jean's desk, stooping to hug her head against her collarbone and tousle her mussy red curls gently. "Live fast, die young, leave behind a beautiful corpse," Betsy says, quoting an old maxim.

She rests her hips on the desk, palms pushing against the wood grain for some balance. "But, then again— neither of us are prognosticators. And we've plenty of proof from alternate realities and broken timelines that we survive into our dotage. In some of them we even thrive," she reminds Jean. "I shall remain beautiful and carefreee forever, and you'll have kids, and get fat." She fluffs her hair with a few absent rakes from her purple manicure. "It's the circle of life, or something something."

The hug was comforting as it usually was, Jean sighing into the hug with slumped shoulders and a relaxed demeanor. It wasn't usually when Jean would have a quiet freak out about their mortality, but it was there often times bubbling to the surface.

Jean shakes her head just a touch as she lifts her fingers, pinching an inch from the air with a slight frown. "Nate isn't really mine and Scotts. He's a combination of our DNA grown in a lab by a madman. And Rachel.." She just shrugs her shoulders, shaking her head.

"In every one of our futures and not the past, Elizabeth, I fear that I'm dead. In every one of them. And the demon is usually the cause." She smiles slightly. "Happened twice, yeah? Third times the charm." She lets out a breath.. "Something something something burgers.." She snerks just a touch, her brows shooting up.

"Have you heard from Logan?" Come to think of it.. she hasn't seen him in a while. Nor heard from Scott about their run in.

Betsy shakes her head, hair tossing around her shoulders. "No," she tells Jean. "But that's not unusual. He comes and goes like a cat— in for a hot meal and a sniff about, and then he's off again. I shan't be surprised if he turns up looking for a cold drink in a few weeks. He's rather constant in his inconstancy," she reminds Jean.

She slides back on the desk, boots swinging loosely under her. "He's like the proverbial bad penny, you know."

Her hand lifts, fixing her hair back into place, which.. really didn't help matters afterall. That hand drops to allow a finger to tap against her lower lip, her gaze nearly vacant as she cuts her eyes towards Elizabeth. "I know.."

She turns in her desk now, one leg crossing over the other as she leans forward to remove her heels. "You're good with bad pennies." She states plainly. "Perhaps the best I know." Which leads to.. "Would you do me a favor?"

"Of course," Betsy says instantly, without asking what it is. She crosses one knee over the other, leaning her weight onto one hand and resting her other forearm across the upraised knee.

It seems as if Jean would actually ask Betsy to track down Logan to bring him here. Even though Betsy was practically rivalled amongst the best. With a push of a stand, she kicks her shoes into the corner as she points towards the desk.

"You're in charge of the Academics for a day or three. I'm going to go find out what he's been up to." And with that? Jean promptly leaves before any protests were made.

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