Buying a Timeshare in Hell

March 23, 2018:

Illyana checks in on Scott, after his run-in with the Brotherhood, and is relieved of her Genoshan responsibilities. Her new job is to build the X-Men a bolt-hole in Limbo.

The Garage - Xavier's Institute - New York City

The garage of Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters is no small affair.
This section of the mansion is capable of storing a large number of vehicles
each inside of their own 'berth'. The berth's have wooden walls that contain
cabinets and drawers, each with tools and parts for their designated
vehicles.

The floors of the garage are a polished granite with in-laid designs that
are their own artistic displays… intricately placed wild patterns of muted
color tones. This, clearly expensive, floor stretches the many yards of the
whole garage.

The ceilings of the garage are a good thirty feet off of the ground and
contain dark cherry wood support beams. There are tall windows along the
walls that stretch up to these high ceilings and some more smaller windows
up there as well. There are also silver chandeliers that hang from the
wooden rafters that supply soft warm lighting.

Multiple large wooden doors can be raised and lowered to allow for the
vehicles entrance into the garage and there are a few large workstations set
aside for cars to be parked at for service.

On one end of the garage is the doorways up into the west wing of the
mansion itself and the far other end of the garage are the wooden doorways
that lead into the horse stables.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Colossus, Wolfsbane, Polaris, Darcy

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Scott is still sporting a sling and currently knelt down outside the caged in area of the shop, parts laid out on a towel and hes cleaning them one by one. A boring task, a menial one but something to do while idle, lost in thought and unable to be of much use beyond planning right now. Which he has going on. Always. A simple tee-shirt of black, jeans and sneakers. Lazy day outside of making himself busy.

A string of curses escape him as he bangs his shin on a workbench upon standing and taking a single step. He begins to hop in a small circle a one legged very furious war-dance, his red lenses matching his mood.


Naturally, it's at that point that Illyana chooses to look in on the convalescent. But of course, she couldn't just walk in to the garage like a regular person. Instead, when Scott completes one of those little hopping circles, he'll find Illyana comfortably propped up by the edge of the offending workbench, arms folded. Her outfit's a little subdued, for her - a sweater in broad horizontal stripes of black and grey, skinny black jeans and black leather boots - and she's wearing a faintly quizzical look as she watches Scott hop.

"You're moving better than I expected." She remarks, so terribly helpfully. A thought seems to trouble her for a moment, but then she shrugs as she apparently dismisses it. "If I was supposed to tell you to go back to bed, you'll have to find someone else for that." If she's here for another reason than watching him hop in agony, she doesn't let on.


Illyana gets to see the incoming kick that the workbench is about to get first hand but Scott pauses, looking like the Karate Kid one foot, one cocked back. He's just not fanned his arms out like wings.

"Shii… eep." He manages, a curse-ending in a more 'teacher appropriate' wording exercise. "Scared the hell out of me." That's not a first she's hearing this nor will it be the last.

"I'm stubborn I hear." He offers in explanation, "I've had enough bed for a while, what's up?" Scott is kneeling now, rubbing the knot forming on his shin, eyes both cast up to give the usual once-over catchup at Illyana, "Genosha didn't get incinerated since we last talked right?"


The blonde sorceress doesn't so much as flinch when it looks like she's going to get between the workbench and Scott's vengeance. She just cocks her head to one side, slightly, as if she's judging his form and deciding whether Scott or the inanimate object is going to win the kicking contest. A small, self-satisfied smile settles on Illyana's lips when he admits she made him jump. "I do my best." She replies, as if she's accepting a compliment.

Illyana still hasn't moved when Scott looks up at her from ministering to his shin. Whyever she's here, it doesn't seem to be a flying visit. She still doesn't immediately answer his question, but at the mention of Genosha she snorts. "Not that I heard. I could probably arrange it, if you like?"
Considering she was part of stopping Zealot, she doesn't sound terribly happy with the spoils of victory. "That's what I want to talk to you about. That, and my brother's wish to go Brotherhood-punching." Illyana looks pointedly at Scott's sling. "I think we should humour him."


"At this point… I wouldn't care." Scott says with a little more edge and gruff to it than he is intended, a sigh escapes him almost immediately and he stands back upright, "No, ignore that, I mean seriously don't do that and I still care just… We have other concerns like yeah, the Brotherhood." It's not like he needs to point out his own injuries to emphasis that last one.

"They're getting antsy, they'll be making moves soon and if he wants to go punch them, I'm all for it. With the right plan but at this rate, they'll show on our doorstep if we're not putting them in the forefront of our issues."

"Go ahead though, talk to me. I'm all ears." He actually turns around and sits beside her on that red bench, the tools inside clanking about as it gets added weight to it.


There are times when Scott should genuinely worry about telling Illyana that he doesn't care what she does. That this isn't one of them, that she doesn't even tease him about it, suggests she's actually come for a serious conversation.

"My brother is not one for complex plans." Illyana points out. She's not criticising her brother, she's just stating a fact. "He's set up his studio in the middle of Mutant Town and made himself a target whether he intended to or not." She smirks. "But I'll let him know he has your support."

When Scott joins her on the workbench Illyana slides smoothly to one side, more than strictly necessary to make room for him to sit down, but not enough that she's perched right at the edge. She likes to keep a little extra personal space, it seems.

"Zealot's been dealt with, for as long as that lasts." No-one's ever accused Illyana of being an optimist. "Lorna's position is secure, for what it cost us." There's a faintly sour edge to Illyana's tone. "She doesn't need us as her secret army any more. Are we pulling out?"


"No. That's one of the great things about him. Sometimes complexity isn't what we need." Scott rubs his knee unconsciously, considering the itching wraps, torn muscles, popped out joints and stitches he currently has the fact his shin bothers him the most is a great sign.

"Thats, bold. I am guessing you're watching over him constantly too?"
He is unmindful of the scoot over, not one to take anything like that personal nor really be concerned, he's aware of Illyana Rasputina's different nature, for the most part and those possible expected social particulars.

"Right, we are pulling out for now. We'll keep our embassy there and it can be manned over by Mar's people, no X-Men are required at this point. While the Brotherhood are being given preference there even through our allies, it's unsafe for the X-Men. Lock the portal down. If we have to open it later, we can, right?" He isn't sure how that works.


A smile flashes across Illyana's face when Scott describes her brother. It's small and quickly gone, but there's not a hint of mockery in it for once. It almost looks fond. Her uncomplicated brother. Such a contrast to herself, who's never quite what she seems.

"I suppose I'll have to." Illyana replies in an aggrieved tone that's mostly for show. "He'll only get himself into trouble if I don't." Illyana looks across at Scott. "Don't tell him. He still thinks he should be watching over me. I thought lending him my sword to fight the bear with would make him worry less, not more." She sounds faintly rueful, but not like she really minds.

What passes for Illyana's softer side melts away when the conversation turns back to Genosha. Scott's decision gets a nod, as if she'd expected nothing else. "I can do that." She confirms. "Or unbind it completely, and replace it if we need it." She glances at Scott again, a faint gleam of mischief returning to her eyes. "How much of this is you avoiding Limbo after your last trip?"


"Someone will have to. You know he's going to treat us like an afterthought if hes feeling over impassioned with this." Scott sighs, the big man always means well, always. "Walking wall will try to take it all on himself. I'm not trying to be a hypocrite here, they claimed they showed up to talk but… that time passed when they set bombs off months ago. There is no coming back from something like that."

"We'll take turns on looking after him." Scott grins just a little, "Yeah, get rid of it. If Genosha needs us we'll fly out there to it but we should be fine for the time being, it's up to politics now."

"How much of it… only about 17%. Admittedly."


If Illyana was really a good sister, she'd leap to Piotr's defence. Instead she just nods in agreement. "He told me he'd call me if they came looking for him." Her tone, and the sceptical look she shoots Scott's way, show just how much faith she puts in that agreement. And as for the Brotherhood…

"They've been getting it all their own way. They've been doing what they want, when they want, to who they want." Pointed look at Scott. She made the same point to Piotr, more or less. "They need to be shown they can lose things, too." There's a dark edge to her voice as she says that, contrasting nicely when she adds, winningly, "And since you've just made me unemployed, I can help." Field Leader, Genosha no more. Illyana's happy to relinquish that title. She prefers things to be other people's fault.

Despite the cheerful mask she's wearing, her eyes are sharp and thoughtful as Scott answers her question. "As little as that." She seems anything but offended. More amused… and still thoughtful. "Does that mean you still have designs on my home, or not?" She tilts her head to one side. "We only have so many Blackbirds, and they can only go so fast, after all." Is she trying to tempt him?


"Good. /We/ will be ready if he calls you." Scott says.

"They have been, not because we haven't tried to stop them largely because we haven't found them and priorities became crossed elsewhere, we're refocusing though, we're here now. We'll clean up this mess."

"Yes, we'll show them they can lose things too. Best way to phrase it." He says quietly, Scott stares forward, missing the edge or menace she may hold in that. "Their freedom, thats the big one."

"I still have designs on your home, thats not lifted. Just got interrupted in our preparations there." There is a hitch, he stops talking and looks over at her, "Lets no sound eager about this."

"I want to work out a way to get more of your portals down, if we can. If that is possible they're useful but I want them prepared for more, possibilities, safety plans and options, controlled routes and use."


"Don't feel you have to hurry." Illyana says, almost lazily, then smirks and shakes her head. "Kidding. Mostly." It's usually the 'mostly' that's the problem, with her.

Illyana says quiet while Scott makes his own statement of intent. As stern as he sounds, she's pretty sure the measures he's prepared to take fall some way short of what she would entertain. Freedom, though. That seems to spark her interest. "Thinking of trading them for Darcy? And a way back into SHIELD's good books?" She asks the question as casually as she's asked any other, but once again she seems a little more interested in his answer than usual.

Scott's eagerness to use Limbo to his own advantage - or possible lack thereof - actually draws a quiet chuckle from the X-Men's resident demoness. "I know all of one person who wanted to see Limbo for something other than business, and I told her it was a bad idea." In short, she's not offended.

"More portals? Is that all?" Illyana puts a little fake disappointment in her voice, but the smile she's trying to hide is devilish. "How many would you like?" A silver-white disc flares into existence before them. And then another, off to one side. And then another, and another, until the brightness is nearly unbearable. "I can make a permanent chamber in Limbo." She says, her voice echoing oddly, as if the sound is bouncing back from larger, more oddly shaped spaces beyond the portals. "Bind stepping discs to anywhere you might want to go." She snaps her fingers, and all the portals vanish. It suddenly seems a lot darker than it did before. "If you're happy with doorways to hell all across the planet?" She asks the last in an innocent tone, before shrugging and adding, "Warded of course."


"That might be an option. One I touched on." Scott admits to Illyana, looking over at her with a surprised smile, "You caught that, huh?"

A noise of him sucking in against his teeth, "That entire business, I'm not sure what Agent Lewis was thinking. Lorna I figure she's hotheaded, singular focus, does what she thinks is best and is trying to reconnect with her family, that whole bag makes sense. I understand her in this."

Bunching up his shoulders the X-Man shrugs, "More portals, what else would there be?" A questioning uplift of his chin, "Warded extensively, I hope."


Scott's surprise earns him a roll of Illyana's eyes. "Life's a lot easier when we don't have to worry about SHIELD coming after us on top of everyone else. And they have something we want back…" She adopts a questioning look, "…I assume?" She seems to be making sure they really want Darcy back. Sometimes her approximation of empathy falls a little short. Deciding she was right the first time, Illyana continues. "..and we have more chance of delivering the Brotherhood to SHIELD than SHIELD does of catching them without our help. It wasn't difficult to figure out."

As for Lorna? "Her family being the ones trying to start a civil war here, while Lorna's cleaning up after one there." Illyana says it in a rather acid tone. She rarely cares about breaking the rules, but she at least considers the consequences when she does it. "She didn't ask for my help." There, perhaps, is a hint of what's annoyed Illyana the most about the whole mess. Still, it's not her problem any longer.

Scott's concern about the safety of her portals is enough to improve Illyana's mood. She's odd like that. "Warded extensively. No demons coming through unless I let them." Do you trust me, is the silent question, as it always is when they talk this way. "What else…" She muses, "A fortress that your enemies can't find, let alone attack? Big enough for as many of your allies as you wished?" What leader of an embattled minority wouldn't want that? "I'd mention the huge library of demonic lore and the numberless army to do your bidding but I think that would spoil my sales pitch." Illyana smirks. She's offering you a timeshare property in hell, Scott Summers. Choose wisely.


"We want Agent Lewis back. Yes. She's been loyal to us." Scott confirms, no delay in his response there.

"Right, Lorna is in her own uphill battle right now. Hopefully she finds her path and it's not in direct opposition to us."

Scott stands up from the box stretching one leg then the other, apparently fine now on that front.

"I figured."

"The pitches are not required anymore. You sold me a while back." A grin appears for Illyana, it's half lived but its there and genuine enough, "I work as best I can with both SHIELD and DEO but they're not to be trusted, not entirely and a day is going to come when we have to fall back. We need a place to do that to. I have faith you'll keep us well protected while there as well."

"Have you chosen a spot to place our little exit strategy?"


Considering that, with one glaring exception, Illyana hasn't really hidden the truth of Limbo from Scott, he really sold himself on this one. Illyana can't take all the credit. Or all the responsibility, which is just as she prefers it. "Faith?" She questions. "Rahne told me that Limbo proves what the Church taught her. Don't let me lead you into temptation." The smile fades from her lips. Making light of Scott's trust was automatic. What she really feels is something else. Illyana just looks at Scott for a long moment, as if searching for the invisible eyes behind the ruby quartz. Finally she straightens a little, and takes a breath. "Nothing will harm the people you bring to Limbo while I can prevent it." The words sound old fashioned from her lips, and they have the tone of a vow. Her eyes remain on Scott for a moment longer, and then she gives a sharp nod. It's done.

"That's giving me a little more trouble." She says, her tone light once more. "Not the where. That was never a problem. The what. If you wanted, I could recreate…" She gestures expansively, "All of this." And she clearly doesn't mean the garage, "In Limbo. Right now." She pauses, letting him think about it. "But I'm not sure you want the others to forget where they are, when the time comes."


"Faith and trust, yes." Scott says not having much to say in regards to the religious confirmations or otherwise, not a subject he's about to broach right now. A headshake at the offer to recreate the school or the subplex underneath, "No. If it comes to a new starts, it is a new start. This is will be a thing of the past."

"I am going to head topside, I'm hungry. Welcome to join me and then we can go check on Peter, otherwise, we'll catch up soon. When you're ready to show me the spot you picked out just do what you do." No telling her otherwise, she comes and goes on a whim after all. It's an Illy quirk.

"Thanks for checking in on me also."


There's a flicker of surprise in Illyana's eyes, but her smile seems oddly pleased. Not about the faith and the trust. Illyana can't promise that won't come back to bite him. She is what she is, after all, much as she sometimes wishes otherwise. But that he's willing to give up even the illusion of what they stand to lose, if they have to flee this place. "Good. It's better that way."

When Scott moves to leave, Illyana finally stands up from her comfortable slouch on the workbench. She hesitates for a moment, as if she's about to take him up on his offer of food, but then she pulls back within herself. "I'll find you." She confirms, calling up a portal - though just the one, this time.

Just before stepping through, she looks back at Scott. "I had to make sure you were still mostly in one piece." She tells him. "Who else would put up with having me around the place?" Whether the comment was meant honestly or flippantly, she's gone before he can reply.

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