Girl Meets Horse

August 16, 2016:

Lin meets a lovely new friend and his Knightly companion.

New York City

Near Central Park


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…


"If you look across to the left — no, your left, not mine — you can see my house from here!"

"Putmedown! Putmedown! Ya crazy!!"

The wind rushes by the pair of men — cold, brisk, invigorating… terrifying. Invigorating for one, terrifying for the other. Immense wings, black as midnight, beat the air as they propel a magnificent horse across the sky over the park in New York city below. The wings are leathery, bat-like in shape, and the horse's coat gleams in the sunlight. The stallion boasts a long mane and tail, dark red eyes and two curved horns sprouting from its forehead.

A rider in a black leather jacket and wearing a knight's helmet on his head sits atop the steed.

A second man in grubby, plain clothes, hangs by a foot from one of the stirrups.

"What, right here?" calls out the rider. "If you say so…" and he reaches to unhook the stirrup-leather. The hanging man practically lets out a yell in protest, and immediately starts babbling information to the rider. The rider grins beneath his helm — part of his face is visible behind the noseguard — and circles around the park.

The horse comes to a landing not far from a police-car with two cops eating a quick meal. "This is Sammy "the Fish" Sturgeon," says the rider while the cops immediately set about trying to free the man, as well as get some answers as to what is going on. "He works for Vito Reveruzzi. He'll testify to the drug-trafficking and money-laundering. Tell Captain Gregson we're even."

He grins, and walks a few steps over to his horse to pat him on the nose.

A few blocks away at the moment the Knight is flying overhead, an antlered Asian woman is walking down the sidewalk at a normal pace headed for the park. The antlers sprouting from her unruly shocks of shiny black hair are a rather clear sign she's not an ordinary human. The second sign is that her body is a good deal more shapely than typical for a young Asian. She resembles the classical mythic mother figure from many ancient cultures actually.
The woman is dressed simply in black jeans, hiking boots and sleeveless green hoodie jacket with the big pocket in front. Something is moving about in that pocket but it's impossible to tell what manner of creature it is just by the wriggling. A keen eye might also note a small bright red scaly head peeking up from near the hood of the jacket. As the horse passes over head, she looks up and gasps softly. It's a beautiful animal and unlike anything she's seen and Lin, has seen a lot. She races the remaining distance to the park after flying up ten feet from the ground. There are no people in her way now and she can move much faster and doesn't seem to care or even notice the surprised exclamations that fall in her wake.
Spotting the police as she rounds the corner, Lin quickly lands and more slowly makes her way across the street in the direction of the horse. She doesn't want to alarm anyone but must get closer to this glorious creature. Her mind is already reaching out, attempting to communicate, say Hello, ask his name, how he is, where he came from, who he's with. She doesn't really notice the Knight yet, or the man he just delivered and honestly only saw the police because of her training and the knowledge that she's a visibly a mutant and might be seen as a threat. The young woman has already forgotten them too at this point however. All her attention seems focused on that horse, she's smiling brightly and her dark eyes are lit with warmth and happiness at seeing something so new and wonderful.

The horse turns his noble black head toward the girl, ears swivelled in her direction, and nickers softly. Nudging Whitman's arm, he peers past his human curiously — which causes Whitman to look in Li's direction also.

Valinor, « the horse replies, lifting his head proudly and snorting through his nostrils. He paws at the ground with a hoof and flexes his bat-like wings a little. There are no actual words to his replies; the discourse takes place on a mental — perhaps spiritual — level. Motioning with his head to Whitman, the steed adds: » My human, Sir Dane Whitman. The Black Knight. «

"Are you flirting with the natives again, old boy?" the human inquires of the winged stallion, giving Li a sidelong, impish glance. He smirks a little. "Love the antlers," he tells her, his smirk broadening into a grin. "Know where a guy can get a set?" He tugs a bit at his jacket, adjust the harness under it to which the scabbard on his back is fastened. The golden hilt of a black sword pokes out over his shoulder.

He is more noble than he appears, « the horse explains, snorting in Whitman's direction.

Lin's smile widens as she listens to Valinor. » You are gorgeous. So very handsome, lovely. « She's surprised but thrilled to to find how intelligent the animal is and the antlered woman is easily able to communicate back, ideas, emotions, scents and instincts, an entire little world of things humans don't understand and can't imagine passing between the two in a moment.
Finally close enough to reach out touch, the young mutant doesn't. Instead she pauses in front of Valinor and blows in his nostrils so he will have her scent, then waits for him to return the gesture before turning to smile shyly at Whitman. "No. Lin was born with hers. She could find for you, not the same though." » Can you speak to him too? « Lin asks Valinor curiously. Her speech skills are somewhat lacking. She really hopes this interesting new, 'noble. He is a nobleman' she reminds herself.. Doesn't think she's simple. She's quite intelligent, it's just that intelligence isn't limited to a human mind. She pats her chest "Lin Li." Then offers her hand to shake, frowns as she realizes this may be the wrong greeting and looks at Whitman with an apologetic expression.
"Lin never.. I. I, never meet a Knight before. Sorry, not know proper things." Her cheeks color slightly in embarrassment. It's true she's usually no longer so worried about what others think of her, this man though and the lovely Valinor, she wants them to like her. A small, spiky scaled head pops up by Lin's ear and her eyes widen. "Ooh no! Sorry. Friend gets excited, wants to meet." She tucks him back beneath the fabric of her shirt. People are often very afraid of her scaly friends especially and the young bush viper is more than a little venomous. "Won't bite, or hurt. Promise. Nice to meet you, Mr. Knight and, Valinor!" Lin claps her hands gleefully and levitates upwards an inch off the ground in excitement before resettling.

"Call me Dane," the man replies, removing his helmet and tucking it under his arm. Grinning. With his free hand he reaches out to stroke Valinor's glossy neck, scratching the bat-winged pegasus on the withers, which causes the steed to stick his head in the air and nicker in appreciation. Dane glances at the horse and back to Lin Li and chuckles.

"Making friends, I see. I'm not going to have to entice you home with peppermints, now am I?" the knight smirks.

The horse glares at him, and continues holding his head up — this time disdainfully. Dane returns his attention to Li. "They are fine antlers; don't worry about getting me any — they wouldn't fit under the helmet. Who's this?" and he directs that question at the little scaled head poking up behind Li's ear.

Lin watches the interaction between man and pegasus with a delighted smile. People with such a keen understanding and bond with their companion animals are far too rare in her opinion. Most have no idea of their animals real thoughts and needs. She briefly studies Dane's helm and nods. "Lin doesn't wear hats. Not fit." She reaches out a hand to scratch behind Valinor's left ear. "Dane." The mutant repeats the name aloud to help commit it to memory.
Her other hand moves to pat the hiding snake. "His name is.." She frowns as she tries to find the right words. "Is the feel of the morning sun on the deep green leaves, the smell the leaves make then." Not a thing humans could say and not an easy idea to express but she tries. "Mm. Sunleaf? For people." She pats her hoodie pocket next and a sugar glider peeks out to peer at Dane. "This one is Half-Paw." The small animal waves a tiny paw in response to the prompt. Half the digit is missing. Strange perhaps to see two very different animals, predator and prey coexisting peacefully. Neither seem to be worried about the other though.
"Likes to make new friends." Lin gives Dane a shy smile. It's so very hard for her to make friends with people. The animals and plants are always her friends, no matter where she goes. People on the other hand, even other mutants, usually find her somewhat offputting. She doesn't understand why it's disconcerting to see snakes hiding in her clothes or tree branches reaching out to touch her. She is aware of her limitations when it comes to communicating but she works hard to overcome that. "Lin has been away. Was coming to the park, see who is new. Never imagined to meet such a wonder." She strokes Valinor's nose but looks at Dane. "Both of you." Lin compliments.

Dane chuckles and nods his head to Sunleaf and Half-Paw in greeting. "Pleased to make your acquaintance," says he. The man smirks at his horse, who seems more interested in his new friend rather than 'his human'. Arching an eyebrow, Dane tilts his head to the side a little and inquires:

"Are you Faerie, Ms. Li?"

Lin squints a little in confusion. "Faerie? Like stories?" She doesn't seem to have had any experience with the fae. "Lin is a mutant. Part of X-Red. Was just away for a long while. Works at Rescue Inc now too." Her dark eyes go to Valinor for a moment and she seems to be considering something. "Only flying horses in the books.. And once, Lin met one from Asgard. Maybe Faerie tales are true too!" The Asian woman seems quite excited by this idea. "Is that where you from? And Valinor?"
Oh she hopes he doesn't have an issue with mutants but surely someone with such a lovely horsefriend wouldn't. At least, he doesn't seem like that type. She's had some terrible experiences with people and has found that even the most unassuming and innocent looking can suddenly turn into raging hate-filled monsters at the sight of her. The memories make her nervous and she fidgets in place a bit. "Sorry. Sometimes people not like it, what Lin is. Get mad, hurt.Kill."
She'd much rather learn more about Dane and Valinor than think about the past though. "Would you tell me more of you? Would very much like to hear."

"More?" Dane inquires, lifting his free hand to rub at the back of his neck. "I'm not sure what you want to hear… No, I'm not Fae. I'm from New York! …Although there are a few Fae Courts here… That's another story. Um… horses first. Dogs second. Cats… still not sure about cats. I think they're trying to take over the world…"

He coughs and chuckles a little at that.

The man shrugs. "Listen, kiddoh — you've got nothing to worry about here. I — " he breaks off mid-sentence when his cellphone rings (the themesong from Monty Python's 'The Life of Brian:' Always Look On the Bright Side of Life). "Excuse me for just a moment…"

The knight's expression turns grave as he listens to the phone call, and he nods his head a few times while murmuring a reply into it. When he does look back at Lin, he has already put his helm back on his head. There is an apologetic expression on his face.

"Duty calls, my little Wildress. X-Red, eh? We'll probably meet again soon, then." And he quickly vaults up into the saddle.

They likely will meet again now that Lin knows about Dane and Valinor. She'll certainly be listening for chatter among her friends about the two. It's a very rare occasion that young mutant finds such a new and unique animal and while a lot of what Dane says and does goes right over her head (she's more proficient with electronics than one might expect, especially cell phones, but never watches tv or movies) that's true of the things most people say and do. He's kind, he has a horse-friend and she thinks just caught a bad guy for the police. Definitely someone she would seek out again, now that she's attempting to cultivate and grow the human part of herself and relationships. "Lin and her friends hope to meet you again soon Valinor and Knight Dane. Be safe! And here.." The young mutant fishes a card from her hoodie pocket. It's been nibbled around the edges but has the X-Red number and address in the center on side and Lin's personal number scribbled on the back. She offers the card to Dane and then settles back to watch he and Valinor go.

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