A Return of Magic(k)

October 03, 2016:

An alternate reality Illyana reaches out to another alternate reality brethren, Nate Grey. They eventually run into Quicksilver and pizza snacking prevails.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Everything is the same, yet different.

This is how Illyana is currently feeling. It's almost like a sense of deja vu, but not, and for Illyana it's vaguely annoying.

Currently the blonde demoness is settled upon her throne within her Citadel. Her hand is resting beneath her chin and while her eyes are currently closed, her scrying crystal is flashing through an onslaught of images. The pictures run the gambit of every day people upon the streets to something more; that more being Xavier's Institute. It's only when the crystal lands upon a familiar face that Illyana will open her eyes. Her blue eyes will turn now towards her scrying crytal and with a faint frown the demoness will rise from her seat. Leisurely now, Illyana will step over to her scrying crystal, looking at the familiar face held within its faceted surface.

One Nate Grey.

"Are you the same, I wonder."

That rhetorical question doesn't stop her from her next actions, however. Upon the Earthen plane, Nate will find a portal shimmering to life beneath his feet …


Nate left the mansion in rather bleak mood, after failing the fiftysomething attempt to find the missing X-Men using Cerebro. Last few times they almost got something, but with heavy interferences. It looked promising, but Xavier can't punch through, and Nate can't synch well enough with him. It is his fault, of course. His lack of focus and anger issues make their attempts to fully coordinate their awesome telepathic powers inefficient.

That makes him angrier.

So he went out to cool down. And Illyana did the Stepping Disk thing. Grumble. It has been years since she did that. Why now? "Not a good moment, blondie? What's up?"


The throne room is as it always is. Very little has changed with the decor or the ambience. About the only thing that might be noticeable to some is the fact that very few demons can be found within.

Which likely isn't all together a terrible thing, for visitors to say the least. Either way, when Nate arrives, Illyana will be still standing near her scrying crystal. The face of the crystal is now quite blank, as the young woman turns to give the telepathic young man a considering look.

"Don't I know it, but, you weren't in the bathroom or the shower, so it's better than most." She says with a hint of humor to her voice and with that amusement comes a hint of a smirk upon her lips. Even with that twitch of her lips, the majority of her expression stays relatively opaque, even as she turns around to face Nate fully. "What's going on?" She asks, her question innocent enough even as she offers a negligent gesture towards Nate. Near him a small table and chair will pop into existence, should he wish to sit.


Nate blinks slowly. "Are you finally admitting you wait for the showers or… no, nevermind. What is going on? X-Red got updates, didn't they?" He ignores the chair, as usual. Pacing is more his style. Watch the TV, read the newspapers? Hmm, he can't remember if Illyana does that. She was 'just movies' with regards TV, right?

"We can't find Apocalypse. That is what happens. Xavier is… wait, you could help with magic. With that crystal of yours." But Xavier should have already asked her. "Have you been skipping Earth-time again?"


It's that first line of Nate's that causes Illyana to actually flash a real expression. An impish grin flashes across her features, even as she settles upon her throne, her legs tucked beneath her. "Wouldn't you /really/ like to know." She adds, automatically falling into a familiar teasing pattern with this Nate. In fact, it's that stray thought that causes her expression to shift back to that more neutral of expressions. The mention of X-Red garners a quirked brow from the demoness, but other than that, she doesn't overtly react.

Not until Nate mentions that one particular name.

Apocalypse.

The demoness' can't help the cant of her head to the side, as she says, "Apocalypse?" And just as she says that name, she realizes her mistake. Sure, she's typically all knowing and all seeing in Limbo, but even she can be taken by surprise. Especially when it comes to such a powerful foe. It's only when he offers that oh so plausible excuse at the end that the blonde young woman will offer another one of those smirks.

"Hit it right on the nose, Nate. I've always said you were one of the smart ones." And while she could leave it at that, she doesn't, as she continues with, "I'm fairly certain I'm not the Illyana you typically know and that this isn't my world, but even so, if the X-Men need my help with something, I'll help. Especially when it comes to Apocalypse." The last of her words hold a grim tone; obviously in her world she's dealt with the monster.


Nate looks at the blonde carefully, trying to spot the differences with the Illyana he has barely seen the past couple years. "Don't you hate when -that- happens?" He offers, a faint smirk in his lips.

Mindscan? No, the demon-ish shields are there, which almost guarantees she is who she says she is. They have their own unique 'mental flavor'. "You should come to the school, though, instead of picking up strangers for important conversations. Or even casual ones."


Differences? There's not many. Perhaps a few added lines here and there upon her face, as this particular Illyana dealt with her own things within her own world, but all in all, she still looks relatively the same.

When he offers that faint quip of his and his equally slight smirk, Yana will offer an answering one of her own. When he quiets, she'll simply watch him, likely knowing what he's attempting to do. She'll sit quite still until he finally speaks up and when he does, the demoness looks thoughtful. "I would like that." She finally admits, even as she offers that devilish look to the other alternate-reality displaced mutant. "And besides, picking up strangers is fun, you just never know what you'll get." Then she'll offer a faint wave of her hand, "In my world we knew each other, so, I'm going to assume you're the same stubborn pig-headed man as mine?"

Rising from her throne, Illyana will step down from the raised dais towards Nate.


Nate snorts at her description. "Lady, I am very incarnation of patience and zen… stuff," he states. The magnitude of the lie probably causing the collapsing of whole dimensions somewhere. "And if you keep doing this, someday you will snatch my evil twin brother and get spanked in your own throne room. Wouldn't that be embarrassing?" And everyone has an evil twin brother if you look in enough parallel dimensions.


"Zen Stuff?" She says in a dry tone, "That definitely describes it so well." She adds, even as she settles upon the edge of the table she called forth next to Nate.

His remark about being spanked causes the demoness to laugh out loud, a true sound of mirth, as she settles a look upon Nate. "Yes, wouldn't everyone enjoy that /too/ much." A corner of her mouth quirks upward at the young man, even as she circles back around to the more pressing matter here.

"What's going on with Apocalypse? You said you were searching for lost people? Who?" She asks, even as she flicks a look towards her scrying crystal. "Your Illyana scryed much the same way I did, so it should be pretty simple to set a spell in motion."

The laughter has brought forth a few of Illyana's demons. Middling creatures that look like how most tv shows and books depict demons. Gangly, big-eyed and eared critters.


"McCoy and Rogue," replies Nate, "he turned them into Horsemen, they are mind-controlled". He steps closer to the crystal. "I don't know. I am not from the same dimension you got me either. I have been traveling up and down the Spiral of Worlds. I knew fairly well one Illyana, though. This crystal feels about right." Pause. "Apocalypse has a bung of minions. Some guys called the Dark Riders that seem to be alpha and high end beta mutants. Some alien soldiers, too. He has been doing terror strikes."


The two names Nate state causes Illyana to lips to dip downward into a frown. Clearly her world had a Rogue and McCoy, as well.

"Horsemen." She states flatly, as she slips off the edge of the table she summoned. As she walks towards her crystal the furniture will be absorbed back into the floor with barely a sound. When the two are standing so close to her crystal, Yana will reach out towards the cool slick surface.

"Find them." She intones.

She could have gone with a flashy spell, if she so wished, but in her mind this wasn't the time for that.

The crystal immediately goes from clear to cloudy, as the spell reaches forth into the ether of the world to try and locate who its Mistress wants.


Nate walks behind Illyana, peering into the crystal. He expects Illyana, the other Illyana, tried and failed before. But one can always hope. It is about time they have a lucky break, right? "Isn't this better if you have something that belongs to them? There should be something you can use at the school."


A look is slanted towards Nate and then a blonde brows twitch upward. "Do you have some mystical knowledge that your counterpart in my world doesn't?" She asks with the beginnings of a tone to her voice, "If the answer is yes, then I'll consider your comment about how I work my spells, if the answer is no, then zip it."

Her gaze will flick back to the crystal for a second and when she sees the surface is still quite cloudy, she'll shake her head. "This is going to take some time. I wouldn't put it past Apocalypse to have some sort of arcane defenses. If I need to invoke stronger spells then I'll snag something of theirs from the school." It's that last word of hers 'school' that causes her to turn back to Nate, the crystal forgotten for now.

"Is the school public or private? Does the world know about it? In my world they did. It caused quite a ruckus at the time, but, hey, that's what they wanted."


"What you told me," replies Nate. He grunts about Apocalypse defenses, accepting the logic of it unhappily. "School is private. X-Red handles the public X-men business. You… er… local Magik along with some members of her classmates when they were students. I know Roberto and Doug. Formed a public team to do open heroics with a friendly face to the public. It looked like a good idea but I ended up doing just the opposite. Anyway, school is a big secret, Scott and Jean run the non-public X-Teams."


"X-Red." She echoes slightly, as she considers just all of what Nate has told her. The mention of Roberto and Doug is nodded at, even as she considers what to say next.

"I suppose we'll have to tell them I'm a different me." She says with a snort, even as she crosses her arms over her chest, "That'll be an interesting conversation to say the least. No matter, it is what it is." One last look will be given to her crystal and when it simply shows the cloudy surface again, Yana will shake her head.

"Come on. Let's head towards the School then. I'm tired of being cooped up in Limbo, playing Peeping Tom to the people within the School. Let's grab some food and you can fill me in more about Apocalypse and what's going on."

The demons for their part stick to the shadows, as they watch the interaction between their new Mistress and her guest.


Nate gives the demons a glance. Are they from the other Illyana's or is Limbo that shifted and connected to another Earth? The whole metaphysic of the situation can get weird. Or… weirder than normal.

On returning. "Yes, good plan. Are you going to try to return to your home Earth? What happened to the 'other' Illyana?"


It does get weird doesn't? If one were to ask Illyana about it, she might not necessarily have an answer for that question.

Either way, the demons will likewise be given a glance, but when she sees they're nothing more than fodder, she turns her attention back to Nate.

His questions earn a frown from Yana, as she settles her hands upon her hips. "I've tried. Many times. I can't seem to get back. That either means my spell was a one-timer, or something has potentially changed in my dimension that it makes it impossible to return." And while she could admit she has no idea what exactly went wrong, she won't.

"I can only assume that this particular Illyana took my place upon my world. If I can return and bring her back, I will, but it may take … some time." And while she may seem blaise about it, she isn't, not inside.


Nate nods, giving Illyana a pointed look. "I am sorry," he knows how the uprooting goes. He could say he is used to it, since he did it a couple times. But it is not something you can get used to, and Illyana had more solid roots he ever had. "I am quite sure you will be welcomed at Xavier's though. Hey, they took me in. They welcome anyone."


A snort comes from Illyana now, as she says, "I'm glad to see you have the same self deprecating humor as others." And while she could say something to his condolences, she doesn't. Instead, she'll snap her fingers, "Let us get back to the Mansion, I could go for a pizza. Food in Limbo is so … trying, at times."

Already a portal has opened beneath the two of their feet and with a mental nudge, the portal rises upward to engulf the duo to whisk them both back to the Mansion.

Specifically the cafeteria held within the School portion of the Institute. "It's been ages -" In Limbo time, at least, "- Since I've had good pizza."


She is lucky it is early enough they arrive when dinner is taking place. Plenty of people (teenage students are people too, barely) although the teleporting in does not cause a ruckus. Not in Xaviers. And the food is hot. And of course it includes pizza slices of several kinds, because the bulk of the 'customers' are teenager and most of the rest early 20s.

"Hey, good day," notes Nate. He is rarely around at regular hours, so he misses most hot meals. "Let me check who is around, but go ahead and secure plenty pizza." 'Check' means telepathic scanning.


As soon as the two are dropped off via the portal, Illyana will immediately look about herself. So much seems familiar, while other parts seem so at odds. This though, the cafeteria specifically, is familiar. And so, Illyana will give Nate a faint smirk, before she's moving to the buffet line. Snagging a plate, the demoness will snag a few slices of pizza, before she grabs a few for Nate, as well. She'll turn her attention to the tables at hand and when one is found to be relatively isolated, that's where she heads.

Settling into a seat, Illyana will use the next seat over to prop her feet up, even as she takes one of the slices of pizza in hand.

She'll take a bite and maybe two, as she waits for Nate to finish check about the Mansion for people she may or may not know. When it seems like he's coming out of his telepathic fugue state, she'll ask, "Anything?"


"Well, Xavier is working on Cerebro and said he would see you later," Nate brings some drinks to the table. Water, soda can, beer. "Gambit is around. But I am not his favorite person right now. "And… there is Quicksilver… yes, he is here, I'll invite him to join us. Pretty sure he can't resist pizza."


"Pizza?" There are ways to determine a speedster's maximum possible velocity. If we are talking about Quicksilver, specifically, mentioning pizza in his vicinity will bring him in the absolute minimum time.

Pietro Maximoff, a mutant of silver unruly hair, dashes in, appearing in the middle of the cafeteria as if materializing himself from a raging gust of wind. His attire is casual, as always, but today it could be simply described as lazy. A black t-shirt, depicting the cover art from one of his favorite discs, a simple pair of jeans and that's it. He doesn't care much about it, even less when he is around Xavier's.

"I'm pretty sure I heard the Pietro-Signal around here. Is my help needed in some pizza situation?" The Transian's quick words are accompanied by an always sweet smile. "Nate! How are you, my friend? Having fun? And—" He looks at the other mutant, the one he has not met yet. "Oh, hello. I'm Pietro. Pietro Maximoff. It is nice to meet you." Giving her a second to introduce herself, before direly assaulting the kitchen.


Illyana will idly cross her ankles, as she continues to use the other chair as an impromptu foot stool. Even being 'new' to this world, some things just don't change about Illyana.

Like doing what she wants, no matter what people might say, or think.

It's only when Nate offers the name of Xavier that Illyana will set her slice of pizza down. "A familiar name." She says, perhaps sounding just the tiniest bit relieved at hearing he's around in this particular dimension. Reality? Whatever one wants to call it.

Still, that gust of wind that announces Quicksilver's arrival is familiar and so, Illyana can't help but look over towards the young man. Her blue eyes will narrow slightly as she gives him a considering look. "Huh. Who'd have thought I'd find people younger than what I'm used to?" Shaking her head, the demoness will rescue her slice from her plate and then push said plate towards Nate, since she did grab a few slices for him.

"Illyana." She adds once Pietro introduces himself and while more could have been said nothing is, as the speedster disappears towards the kitchens.


"Actually, that was a telepathic message," admits Nate. Who knows how did he hear it in his high-speed mind. Probably Xavier has yet to give him the telepathy 101 lesson; the old man has been busy.

"Yeah, pizza day at the cafet…" sheesh, he noticed quickly. "It is every Monday and some Thursdays, he adds." Even he learned that bit. "Hmm, oh yeah. Kinda young." Nate vaguely remembers Quicksilver was one of the X-Men back in his homeworld for at least a decade before he was out of the labs. Many of his memories are blurry. "We met when the brainwashed Rogue and Beast went on a rampage."


Quicksilver reappears, with a soda in hand, now leaning against a wall near the sorceress. "Younger? That's one of the best first impressions I've heard about myself. So, thank you," He looks at her, the name sounding somehow familiar, but he can't place it, "Illyana. I'll take that as a compliment." He sips slowly, watching around. For a time he lived here, but that time was long ago, and the speedster is still getting himself familiarized to the mansion again.

To Nate, his eyes widen quite a lot.

"Wait. Pizza… day? As in… man, I've been buying pizza every Monday, when I could have had FREE mutant pizza instead? I think I will have to catch up, for all the free pizzas I missed. Yeah, I missed this place." Now with more reason! Nut his joyful expression turns more serious, just for a fraction of a heartbeat, as Rogue and Beast are mentioned. "Ok, I don't miss /all/ mutants, everything considered." He adds, focusing again on his soda and glancing curiously at Nate and Illyana. "Why are we suddenly talking about how young I am?" He smirks.


Her pizza for now is forgotten, as Nate mentions Rogue and Beast rampaging. Her blue eyes will cut towards the telepath, as she says, "I didn't realize they went on a rampage. You just mentioned they were kidnapped -" She frowns towards the brown-haired man and then when Quicksilver reappears, the blonde will turn her gaze back towards the speedster, as well. A faintly amused smirk twitches the corner of her mouth upward, when he mentions his forgotten pizza and how he must now make up for all the lost food. "I like you." She says with amusement, "You're amusing." And then, at his last question, the demoness will cant her head to the side.

Humor can still be seen within her blue eyes, even as she says, "Let's just say I knew a slightly older you. My teleportation can dip into the temporal area." Of course, that's not really the truth of the matter and Illyana is quite fine with that.

—-

"Told you they had been turned into Horsemen," points out Nate. Bad news don't make him less hungry, so his pizza slices get consumed at good speed. Slowly compared with Pietro's, though. "As for me, Pietro, I am from a parallel Earth and things were pretty different there. You were one of the veteran heroes, so probably old enough to be my father," he smirks. "No worries, I have travelled enough not to be surprised too much by the variants. Only a few things still shock me."


Pietro grins and nods to Illyana. "Thank you. Now, that's a first impression I'm not used to hear." He bites from his pizza. The same slice that was not in his hand, literally, an instant ago. "So, just to clarify. You both have met /two/ Pietros? That's… well, I don't know if you are too lucky or exactly the opposite…" He ponders, his last words almost muttered, but it is swiftly dismissed with a shake of head. "Also, teleportation? That's good to know." Her ability wasn't evident to him until now, and he is always curious about that sort of thing. "So… Illyana, who also happens to be very young… Are you new around here? Just… curious."

The second slice (yes, second, because… speedster) is bitten with evident enjoyment.

"Nate. What if I /am/ your father?" Vader style, as it couldn't be otherwise. The third slice is finished.


"Who also happens to be young?" Echoes Illyana with that same quirk of a smile, "Isn't that cute." She'll shake her head for a silent moment, before she adds, "And no. Not new. Exactly." She says obliquely, even as she offers the speedster an innocent smile.

She totally understands she's possibly being frustrating here and she can't quite stop herself from continuing to do so.

Turning her gaze back to Nate, the blonde sorceress says, "I'd like to know what shocks you Nate -" And while she was just about to say more her expression suddenly shifts. She'll look to the left of herself for a long moment, then, with an almost speedster like quickness, Yana says, "I gotta go." Rising to her feet, Illyana already has a yellow-gold circular portal opening beneath them, as she says to both men, "Nice chatting with you both. Nate, be good, I'll be back as soon as I can." And with that said, the portal rises upward and engulfs Illyana, whisking her away to Limbo.


"Never met him," admits Nate, sipping from his beer. "He was pretty famous, though. Not my father, sorry. That is Scott. You can tease about it, he 'loves' it." Illyana gets a nowayinhell look from the young telepath. If he tells her what shocks him, it will be a daily event. "For you to guess, blondie," he decides.

Aaaand she is gone in a flash. "Typical. Probably a demon rebellion or… ah, she was preparing a big spell, must be that. Limbo time is weird. Well, more pizza for us." Here trying to be positive.

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