Lookit The Fuzzy Heads

June 21, 2016:

Rachel meets the X-Force in their hidden base and Lunair is recovering

Lot 80, NYC

Lot 80 Subterranean levels

Underneath Lot 80 through a passageway of tunnels that are entered through
the Gabby's location, inside the Elevator itself or in Gowanus Bay's
polluted waters one will find themselves within X-Force's headquarters.

A hidden underground fortress and living quarters for the team itself.
Largely still under development the main entry hub is a large room with many
doors off of it, central of it is a set up of couches, recliners and sofas
situated in a horse show facing a messy hive-like set up of flat screens,
large box TVs, computer monitors, tablets, tiny black and whites you name
it. A video screen for it is there piled upon each other in a chaotic heap
of wires and electronics.
Something different is always running on each of these from video games to
movies, security footage around Gabby's, the Elevator, locations around
Brooklyn, the bay and even parts of the world. This is the living room. The
meeting place and the hub central of the team. There is also a large heavy
slab of metal with chairs around it in the corner, this for now is the
dining area. Roughly welded together chairs, junked chairs and stools act as
seats around it.

Beyond this central chamber walk in showers and stalls exist, small rooms
are set up for living, there is even a medical lab, underground greenhouse
and a kitchen that was once a sort of cafeteria but is cluttered with junk
and old machinery. It works as just a kitchen at this point.
Air filtration systems, sewage processing and air conditioning runs
throughout the HQ, artificial sunlight is everywhere as are living plants
strategically located to give it a less claustrophobic inspired feel.

Much of the construction or idea of the HQ is still in the works as the team
works heavily off what they steal, acquire or can afford as a unit. They
have no special funding.

For emergencies there is also rapid escape tunnels that lead out and in to
the waterway, Bay and the surrounding area. By it's very nature and
conception the HQ and Elevator itself are bunker levels in stability meant
to withstand explosion and impact (due to grain combustion possibilities).
There is also a makeshift holding section that can host up to about three
separated individuals in eight by ten concrete and steel cells.

Above ground the team has been using the inside of the Elevator for training
purposes and several of the abandoned trailers and shipping containers as
garages and storage.

The overall feel is makeshift, almost post-apocalyptic as the team is very
much underfunded and undermanned at this point in time. They get by.


NPCs: None.

Mentions: Jean Grey, Zakura, Breakneck


Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

Besides some bruises and electricity burns (his outfit protected him from the worst of that) Nate got out lightly from the ambush at Chicago. Not so Lunair and Rose, who got shot and stabbed pretty badly.

So instead of chasing after 'Brenda' as he is sure the psycho handler is called, and after some quick first aid, Nate brought the injured women all the way back to New York and X-Force hideout to be patched up, again. Doctor Corben is much better than him at medical assistance, so they are going to be alright.

But Nate is not feeling alright. He is rather unhappy with a certain haired lady he is very much in love. So, after some punching things at the gym, he is just pacing around the living area and generally being grumpy.

Luna needed sedated… heavily… So Corben could see to her wound. It is the first time Rose had seen someone more fearful of hospital rooms then herself, so she grit her teeth and stayed, denying her own care to simply sit to the side, heat up a large hunting knife and cauderize her through-and-through bullet wound closed in her shoulder.

Corben just snorted and tossed his bloodied rubber gloves in a trash bin in passing, leaving Lunair to come to on her own. Better that way, even Rose knows it tends to come with violent outburst on rising. So she follows as well, but instead of tailing the man, she goes her own way, finding one of her stashed bottles in passing to set it down on a table beside the beaten and worn couch to fold into it and spike the coffee, or add coffee flavoring to the spiking… Semantics!

Nate's pacing however is watched over the rim of the mug, instead of saying anything she just holds out the bottle for him as well.

Rose is dressed in leather pants, laced up the sides to tie at the hips, a sports bra bearing Adventure Bitch scrawled across the front. A patch rests over her bad eye, as the electrical feed in it was fried so Chip got handed an eyeball on her return, to which he either happy squeed or screamed a bit at the delivery of an eyeball into his awaiting high five. Whichever, he was prodding at the cybernetic eye.

Rachel, for once, hasn't been ambushed, shot at, or been the victim of an assassination attempt by a friend… what? That's what passes for normal in her life since she arrived in this time period!

In fact, Rachel has had some genuinely GOOD news for a change, and she's actually ventured out of the X-Men's basement in order to share it with Nate. Because he's her brother and she's been driving him crazy lately. Of course, as soon as she scanned for Nate's presence her good mood took a sudden dive. Even at a considerable distance, she could feel the turmoil in his mind, and stealthily withdrew her mental probe without actually making contact.

It's not all that much later that Rachel finds herself above Nate's current location, and has to privately admit that her plan has more than a few holes in it. She glances around at her deserted surroundings and then shrugs to herself, reaching out with her mind for Nate's. « So I thought I'd come and see what's got you riled up. » She says into his brain, not bothering with a conventional greeting. « Are you going to let me in, or do I have to stand around up here and talk to you? »

Yes. This is Nate trying to ignore Rose. He is really bad at it. He can also brood as well as an Summers. Rachel telepathic message is actually an almost welcomed distraction. « What the hell, Ray. Have you been spying on me? » He replies with a definitely irritated mind-tag. « Hold on. Let me ask. »

"We got visitors up there, where is Rip?" He asks out loud, also looking for the older mutant with his telepathy. "Looks like Rachel has managed to sneak out the X-Men's basement. She is upside."

Ravager doesn't care about being ignored or the bottle being turned down, she can brood like a Wilson. It comes with shit eventually blowing up and getting stabbed, but right now more alcohol for her then! Downing the coffee mix she drops the mug aside and when Nate speaks of a….visitor? She just sighs and stands, knocking back the bottle and heading for the door.

"Sneak? Remind me again, how old Rachel is and what all she can do?" The tone is rather dry, showing no emotion in it, but her facial expression…needed deliverance.

"Don't know. If he doesn't come out from his peyote infused zen moment we can let C.C. be the welcoming committee." A sniff and her hand rubs across her face to make sure the smile is not showing.

A reculsive by nature Robert "Ripclaw" Berresford understands the need for community, especially as an outcast. Outcasts like them, mutants, mutates, extranormals, super-humans whatever they are coined still manage to find like minds and those like minds in this particular situation are known as X-Force, a combination of the less trusted or more violent students of Xavier's and the hunted Cyberforce rebels like himself, Chip, Corben, Zakura and Breakneck.
"I'm here," Ripclaw states calmly, never mind the fact he's been gone for almost a month on some vision quest. Not that this is what he declared, he only said he must go speak to someone wiser than himself, "Rachel? You spoke of her once or twice. If you trust her… let her in." It's that easy, the metamorphic Ghost Warrior has faith in the members of his team. "C.C. is not a viable choice for door greeter, Rose."

'Upstairs', Rachel blinks at the venom in Nate's mind-tone, and folds her arms stubbornly, even though there's no-one to see the gesture. « Yes, Nate. » She replies, irritation flaring in her mental presence now, neatly covering her concern. « I've been spying on you. Of course I have. » There's a very short pause as Rachel gets her rising annoyance under control. « Or maybe I just tried to 'call' you and noticed you were about ready to kill. Now are you going to tell me what's up, or do I have to ask Rose? Because I'm betting that'll end with her yelling at YOU because *I* read her mind. »

Rachel cocks her head to one side as Nate feeds her someone else's decision, and a slight smirk touches her expression. « If you decide you don't trust me now, I'll be really offended. » She tells Nate, concern/irritation suddenly replaced by amusement in her mental tone.

"Of course I trust you, you idiot," did Nate said that out loud, yes he did. That shows how badly rattled he is. « Come down here. Wait, I'll show you the entrance, and the way around the bobby traps ». No comments about why he is in such a poor mood, although Rachel might have noticed the spike of emotion when she mentioned Rose. Yes, she is here.

"Rose. Uh… nevermind. She was all paranoid about leaving the X-bunker." He turns to Ripclaw. "Rachel is from other timeline and daughter of the same parents than me. So she is my sister is some ways. Same powers, too."

"Why not?? He's sooo sweeet." Rose smiles at Ripclaw and makes a cheekum-pinchum gesture with a kissy face, but the smile should have been serrated. She knows damn well, and perhaps there is still a bit of a chip there. Ripclaw gets a once over and she turns to lean against the doorframe with arms folded across her chest, the bottle swirling lazily from fingertips grip.

Mixing alcohol with opiates has been a cocktail from hell, keeping nerves on a very lazed status, her mind foggy and shut down, but since her return she's laid off the pills a bit and if Rachel did intrude… Yes, someone would have gotten face mauled. Looking towards Nate then, Rose tilts her head, the single blue eye snapping from him to Ripclaw. "Well, I am outvoted for welcoming committee, someone better go get her… Gently."

And with that hands splay as if she dropped something weighty from her own grip, sans the bottle that she pulls from and promptly moonwalks away from the group until her ass bumps the edge of the couch and she falls back to land in the people-eating cushions of over-broken status. She loved it, death by couch threats and all.
The HQ has cleaned up quiet a bit since residents beyond Ripclaw, Corben, Chip and his assortment of cybernetic helpers claimed this as home. It's not something to be entirely embarrassed about inviting guests in to now, at least, once you're below and out of the Elevator's exterior.
"Family? Even better, blood isn't to be denied from our little sanctuary."
Fortunately for Ripclaw he got in last night and was able to change from his riding gear, bike up, leathers away to a white tattered tee shirt, worn jeans and sandals. One could say he looks almost human past the chalky white skin, red eyes and bio-metallic claws.

"I'll take your word for it. If I had to coin people as food tastes here… sweet wouldn't be an option for any of you." He caught the sarcasm of course hes used to it from Miss Wilson-Worth.

« Good. » Yes, he said it out loud. Yes, Rachel's a good enough telepath to pick it up anyway. Along with that telltale flare when she mentioned Rose. Rachel's not a complete idiot, she wasn't picking up pain from Nate, Rose's involvement seemed like a good guess. « I'd appreciate it. » Rachel's tone is calmer now, less confrontational. After all, she got what she wanted. « Booby traps don't sound like fun. » Burying her hands in the pockets of her jacket, Rachel glances around - eyes and telepathy, both - making sure she's still unobserved while she waits for Nate.

Nate vanishes for a minute and returns with the redheaded girl in tow. There is a noticeable family resemblance, indeed, although Rachel has her mother's fiery red hair and paler skin. Ripclaw knows Jean and Rachel is so much like her.

"So yeah. We got in a fight recently, that must be what you noticed. Lunair got injured bad. Rose was… uh." He glances at the gunslinger and can't avoid smirking at seeing her swallowed by the couch of doom. "She walked into an ambush instead of waiting for us. I am… kinda angry at her." He walks to the couch, to mock-glare at the woman. "What am I going to do with you, uh?"

Rose just keeps legs dangling over the arm of the couch, one crossing over the other as booted feet bounce to a rhythm in her own head, but it stops at Ripclaw's quip, that short and razor shorn cropped head of white peering off the seat and around the side to jab him with her angry eye!

"I am the best mix of bitter-sweet, maybe a bit salty…." The words trail off and her eyes roll. "Whatever, trail mix. I'm good for you."

Though when Ripclaw mentions family being safe… She snorts. No words need to be said there, she would not bring her 'family' here. Ever.

Nate's gone and back with Rachel warrants no reaction, but his chiding has brows furrowing in a narrowed glare. "It was not an ambush. You think the video relay wasn't a calling out? I was just answering…" A look to nails, buffing them and inspecting. "This way if it went sideways you guys could see what you were really up against instead of just a calling card for… well…" A glance to Ripclaw then.

"I didn't expect you and Luna to show up." What's he going to do with her? 12 step programs?

"Happens, you're all in one piece?" Ripclaw inquires, Lunair's lack of presence might say she is recovering but no one seems alarmed, no announcements of death and that general feel of the usual permeates. "Teamwork exercies might be in order but honestly, way I feel about it, the more we do together the better we'll operate… although," He pauses and looks from Nate to Rose, "The two of you and your time together should be the best at working as a duo or in a team."
Ripclaw is hardly one to chide Ravager in her Wolverine-esque approach.

Upon Rachel's arrival Ripclaw offers a smile, a quirk to one side of his face of the lips and an outstretched hand, "Resemblance is uncanny." To Jean, not to Nate. The two dimensional travelers share a look but it isn't quite the same.

Rachel slips in behind Nate and glances quickly around the living area of the base. Particularly after her last meeting with some of Nate's other associates, she's curious about exactly what he's involved in. Ripclaw, of course, gets the once over, though no more than that. Rachel's seen stranger things than him in her time, and she answers his smile with one of her own, which turns quizzical at his comment. She glances at Nate, but then her expression clears as she connects the dots. "I guess Nate's not the only member of the family you know, huh?" She doesn't hesitate to reach out with her own rather more human-looking hand when the bio-metallic claw is offered, either.

Opening pleasantries get interrupted by Rachel's concerned look toward Nate. "She going to be OK?" Lunair, of course. She made burgers for Rachel when she was hungover. Of course she's concerned.

As for Rachel's verdict on what Nate should do with Rose? A quiet snort is offered, followed by a simple suggestion, "Find whoever did the damage and help her kick their butts?" If Rachel thinks Rose looks a bit more of a mess than usual, she doesn't say anything.

"We talked about it," points out Nate, sitting down on the floor, his back against the couch. "Of course we went to help you. There were six S.H.O.C.s there and you would have gotten yourself killed. And… you are collecting wounds, every day, not stopping a minute, and using drugs to cope." Pause. "It is stupid, but I am starting to get really worried."

A glance is directed to Ripclaw. "Yeah, we are great when we go together into a fight. We got a good deal of practice, we have been doing it since we were… well, years." Three or four years. A lifetime and another dimension away.

Rose opens her mouth, looks from Ray to him and then to Ripclaw. Luna was fine aside from having to deal with a 'hospital room' and Corben, Nate was, and she was. There is no debate here in her eyes, nor guilt, but him bringing it up in front of them? "You insisted on going, I've been fine…" Blink. Legs hook over the armrest and aid in using just her core to sit on the arm in a perch that has her straddling it to face them all.

"I don't do interventions." If that's what he was going for? "But I'll accept help in the future to kick the psycho's ass." A salut towards Ray in that and she takes another long pull. "Rip, you'd have loved it, they cloaked, like chameleons to the environment, and the bitch in their comms… Blew their heads up." A moment to think at just how that sounded and she rephrased…slightly.

"It was…new. It wasn't good they died…like that… but… Ah fuck it. You get me?" Maybe? Rose sucks at sitreps.

Lunair got impaled, but she's young and nature makes young people pretty resilient because they do dumb things. The system works, really. She probably had to make friends with Valium or xanax to avoid flipping out due to her massive, massive phobia of medical personnel. "I loooooooove you," She's high as a kite. But thankfully, she's in and out of consciousness. Right now, she's high. And thankfully, Lunair is a friendly kind of drunk/high person.

"No, I suppose not, I am good friends with Jean." A withdraw of his hand and Ripclaw opts to stand against the wall, both arms draping lazily across his broad chest. "A tour can wait, but please, make yourself at home."
"Six?" Ripclaw almost looks almost incredulous, "You're all lucky to be alive and not in worse condition. Six is… remarkable." Blink."Blew up their heads? That's not something Cyberdata likes to do usually, waste of expensive assets. Did you get a name?" Then again the internal power struggle between Kimata, the Board and Zadrok could account for any oddness happening in engagements.

"There she is." A low chuckle escapes the metamorphic mutant.

Rachel's suddenly intensely curious and she doesn't even try to hide it. Jean's been far nicer to her since she arrived than she probably deserved, but she still hasn't spent very much time with her sort of mother. A chance to talk to one of her friends… will have to wait, Rachel belatedly reminds herself, since there are clearly more important things that need to be discussed right now. "Thanks." Rachel says instead, and although she sounds like she means it she remains standing, stuffing her hands back in the pockets of her jacket.

The telepathic sense of Lunair returning, however briefly, to the land of the conscious, helps Rachel relax a bit. It's hard not to when she's brushed past a mind that's just THAT high. « Hi Lunair. We love you too, and stuff. » Although Rachel smiles, she firms up her mental shields a bit. She doesn't want any of Lunair's intoxication bleeding into her!

Rachel drags her mind back down to Earth /just/ in time to hear Nate express his disappointment with Rose, and that makes her wince, hard. "Smooth, Nate." She says under her breath, and is slightly surprised when Rose /doesn't/ hit him. She stays out of the specifics of the discussion. She's not exactly up to speed, after all.

Nate silently agrees with Ripclaw. Six would have killed Rose. Hell, three would probably have killed Rose. "Not just for the brain-blowing nut, Rose. You gotta go with backup to every operation Cyberdata is involved. All of us. And yes, the handler killed the troopers when it looked as if I was about to knock them out. I guess Cyberdata doesn't want to have more soldiers switching sides. Or maybe they put an insane psycho in charge. Or both."

He waves at Luna when the girl comes high and so full of… love. Snerk.

Rose just remains on her perch, in a position that is far more ready to queue an exit then laying on the couch. Nate gets a slow roll of her eye that lands it back on Rachel. "Long of the short of it, us women," A point between her and Ray. "We need babysitters." A pause then and she flicks her hair from dangling over the eye to look over at Ripclaw.

"I am not welcoming committee, remember? Nor am I good at explaining this?" Help a girl out here, she doesn't know a quick way of bringing Rachel up to speed.

Lunair's entry though brings a smile to Rose. "Drugs are bad, mmkay?" But in saying that she blows a kiss to Luna.

No touchy!

Lunair beams at Ripclaw. "Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii. Yes, exploded heads. It was sad but also kind of funny." Oh boy. Here comes Lunair's sitrep. "They were trying to squish Rose, so they had to die." Plain and simple. "It was sad. And not full of beauty and love." Giggle. She waves to Rachel. She nods. Lunair's seen better days, really. "Super bad future alien dudes stealing tech from alien dudes are also having brain powers and killing peoples. You should be careful, even if you have the brain rays," Cue arm wave making. Brain rays. See? Best sit rep ever. "Probably both. I was told to blow myself up if I ever get caught or on the verge of death," She remarks. "That's all." Wobble.

"But I am GLAD to see you. Super glad."
~ ~ ~ See? Brain waves. Rays.

"Also I do not know if they want the daemonite stuff but that is ALSO super bad and uh." Stare. Lunair zonked.
At Roses look and commentary at babysitters Ripclaw speaks up,"Never said that. I'm not opposed to solo operations as long as you can handle it…. six… is, overstepping. Everyone here is strong, strong enough to handle two maybe even three but you must remember, these SHOC troopers are brainwashed, trained and amplified. They're not your run of the mill Brotherhood extremist or even one of those Reavers that works with the Purifiers. They're cyborgs AND mutates." Ripclaw stops what hes saying, realizing hes coming off preachy or worrisome, that's not his place. This team isn't supposed to be like that, they're a close-knit unit, a tribe of warriors under one goal, more akin to the Fianna of Irish stories… "Importance in all of this is you all came out alive and we dealt more damage to Cyberdata." A nod to Lunair, "Careful is basically what I am stressing, some of you I've grown attached to and it would be a shame to have Chip make surrogates." Serious? No, maybe, he is once again smiling. "Daemonites? Ugh we'll have to look in to that later but for now…"
Ripclaw's claw lifts up and scratches idly at the underside of his jaw a casual glance is given to Rachel as he studies the newcomer, compares her to Jean and admittedly zones out just a little.

Rachel snorts - it's the only way to avoid laughing - when Rose translates Nate's babysitting instructions. "Funny." Rachel says, "He's been trying to get me OUT of the hole I've been hiding in." She shrugs. "Maybe he just likes you more than me." A hand is extracted from her pocket to wave off any explanations of what the hell's going on. "Hey. I know I've come in in the middle of things here…" Nate actually gets a quick look of apology. He's tried to talk to her about this part of his life before, but she's been too busy with her own problems to listen. She's about to say she'll get the full story from Nate later, when Lunair takes it upon herself to explain. She waves back at Lunair, but by the end, Rachel's eyes are noticeably wider than before. "Well OK." She says quietly. Because, really, what else can she say?

Whether she's cued telepathically, feels his eyes on her, or just looks around at the right/wrong moment, Rachel catches Ripclaw studying her, and figures she'd better say something. "You do realise that I have no idea what you're all talking about." Rachel offers, frankly. "And I've basically been told to stay out of trouble." She shrugs. "But if you need me…?"

"It is not babysitting when you try to… oh hell," Nate is not going to win this argument, even Ripclaw is withdrawing from it. And Rose will go again alone, injured and drugged, to pick a fight against ridiculous odds. And die.

So he goes back to brooding.

But Rachel, at least, deserves a response. "We are trying to bring down a criminal organization that passes itself as a high-tech corporation called Cyberdata. Among other things they kidnap and experiment on mutants, turning them into brainwashed cyborg super-soldiers." Pause. "Well, good to see you out of the bunker. What is going on?"

"Aaaaaaaalso, there are some Atlantean weapon having dudes who tried to raid an Oscorp but I do not know much about that. I tried shouting at the ocean but no one came," Oh dear. Poor Luna. She's not very good at this. Lunair beams warmly at Rose anyway. She nods at Rachel. She's totally awesome at explaining! Really! "Baaaaaasically, if someone teleports in at you, you will totally have a bad time."

"I worry about Miss Ravager. She's SUPER brave, and I adore her, but like- no to the Deathwish, okay?" Fretfret. "I would be super sad. I was so angry at them for squeezing her. SOoooooo So angry."

"No, he wants you out of the hole because it is far too limiting for potential and the need is greater then the opposite." The arm of the couch groans under the added weight of Rose's body as she leans forward towards Rachel after a long drain of the bottle. "Like me more then you? Sweetheart he'd have killed me for you." A wink and she tips the bottle to her with a /tsk/ sound before she stands, sliding leather clad hip off the arm lest she break it. "Babysitter."

Lunair's explanation has Rose just staring, licking lips and tracing a tongue over canine while lips part in that moment of pure…. What the fuckery, but EUREKA! is in there somewhere, especially since Ripclaw, himself - chimed in. The Nate, short, sweet… FINALLY!

But in the meantime her eyes are bouncing from one to the next and then stops as Ripclaw puts on the creepy zone out on Rachel. A hand reaches in front of him and fingers snap. "Earth to Rips." *SNAPSNAP!* "Just tell her you like her hair before you lean in and smell it, k? Etiquette." See Ray! She's got your back… And the ribbing at Rip has her half smirking, though it wilts when Luna speaks further on her deathwish. Walking up to Luna, Rose grabs her by the shirt and kisses her. Straightening Luna's shirt with a sweep of hands, Rose turns, sips her bottle and makes her exit.

"Love ya too."

A blink, an open mouthed gape then Ripclaw closes it, "I… what?" A stammer and he gives Rose a glare despite her joking around, "You don't know me." He jokes back. Though, shes perceptive enough…

"Anyways, Rachel, normally we wouldn't be so open to our activities but how much can you keep away from a family of telepaths? Your brother vouched for you anyways so our home is yours should you need it." Ripclaw shrugs presses away from the wall he was leaning against, "And If you're willing to aid us, you're welcome to show us what you got in the near future. We can always use the extra firepower." A grin, a toothy sharp canine displaying grin appears, "Deathwishes are just our sort, Nate." Ripclaw says this with some measure of joking but they know, can feel or sense he is serious about that statement.
Glancing over his shoulder at Lunair as he exits the room he beckons her, "Come on then, may as well update me on all of this crazy you're speaking of. I also have a medicine that will help you out beyond what Corben has prescribed." Which is usually just liquor. In Doctor Corben's eyes (despite his expertise and vast knowledge otherwise, booze cures all ailments even the life threatening ones.

In all fairness, Lunair has a monstrous phobia and does require anti-anxiety or some sort of sedation lest she flip out. She nods. "Okie dokey!" She will follow along, almost skipping. Until - then she gets a kiss. Her eyes go wide as saucers. "Whee!" And then she ambles off with that, cheery and waving. "I am full of knowledge and probably drugs." Yup.

Rachel tries to control her expression but she can't quite keep the surprise from showing on her face. She hadn't been making much more than a throwaway comment, trying not to join in with ganging up on Rose, and hadn't been expecting commentary. Certainly not commentary that's a little too accurate. "He'd better not regret getting what he wished for, then." It's almost another throwaway comment, but there's a certain edge of satisfaction when she says it. Not that Rose gives her any time to dwell on it. "Try not to hold it against him. He thought I was someone else." Rachel says the words lightly, but then screws up her face at Rose's parting comment to Ripclaw. Considering he's a good friend of her kind of sort of mother, that's sent her mind down a road she really didn't want it to take.

At least she's able to scrape together enough of her composure to come up with some kind of response to Ripclaw himself. "Hey, if cyborg… mutates…" Did she even get that right? "Are gunning for any of these three…" A wave of her hand encompasses Nate, Lunair, and the departing Rose, "Then I'm willing to help." She smirks. "I'll probably get caught in the crossfire sooner or later, anyway."

Rachel turns to Nate, finally. "Come on. I'll tell you my news and then you can tell me about your evil high tech corporation. Yours will take longer." Her tone is teasing, her eyes aren't.

"Lunair got it right," remarks Nate. He is a telepath, and on top of that he has known Rose for a while. She was bold and somewhat reckless before, but now she is positively, actively, looking to hurt herself. He is worried enough he didn't catch Ripclaw staring until Rose pointed it out. Now way. Except Ripclaw's reaction hints it was. Now, should he be amused or outraged? Hell if he knows.

Maybe he should try booze himself. But when he gets drunk his telepathy goes nuts and it generally makes it all worse. No easy way out. "Yeah, we should talk," he says to Rachel, standing up. "Lets help Luna into her room and… hell, I need to talk to Rose too. But I think I should give her a couple hours."

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