Family Traditions

June 06, 2018:

Lorna goes to visit her father in Genosha and show him Aurora. She agrees with his suggestions… (Nate Emits Magneto)

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Ever since the crashed wedding at Magda Square, back in Genosha, Magneto has been trying to draw Lorna back to the island. But he has been very busy. The elections are coming July 30th and although his victory is assured, dealing with a city with over one hundred thousand powered beings requires much ingenuity and brand new solutions.

He is up for the challenge, of course, but it keeps him busier he had expected. He has barely been able to leave Genosha in the whole year. And the eyes of the world are on him all the time.

But at least Lorna promised to return when Aurora was born, and so Magneto arranged for mother and child to arrive at Carrion Cove through the mutant underground, the same way hundreds of mutants arrive in Genosha every week.

Hopefully, she avoided SHIELD's eye. And although Carrion Cove is technically autonomous, Magneto has safehouses in the city to arrange for the meeting with his daughter.

*

Lorna had been careful, suspicious and untrusting of why her father kept in touch with her this entire time, there had been arguments with contact and messages and even once a phone call, since her ruined wedding. Still, there was part of her that felt at the very least, Magneto, her father, deserved on some level to at least see his granddaughter. Marcos didn't entirely agree, but had been willing to humor Lorna as he always did.

So she'd dyed her hair a dark black, wrapped up Aurora in some lightweight baby clothes and a cap and taken the transport over to Genosha. She didn't plan to stay long, had no intentions of remaining. Even as soon as her foot stepped onto the island she felt a prickling on the back of her neck, a wariness that returned to her posture and the line of her shoulders. Aurora sensed her mother's disquiet and quickly grew fussy in return, electric sparks danced on the edges of Lorna's person, contained but visible.

Lorna sighed, shifted her weight as she rocked Aurora back and forth, trying to calm her daughter in vain. The woman wore a pair of jean cut-offs, and a loose-fitting black button-up shirt, sleeveless shirt. Summer was gaining ground back in the States and Genosha was tropical. For all of Lorna's quiet disease at being back in Genosha part of her was happy to see where things had improved. Where rebuilding had taken place, and a strong part of her called to see the rest. To go back to the Spire and see what had changed, to check in on the mutates she'd last seen…

*

Lorna's first familiar face in Genosha is not Magneto himself, but Scanner. The tall blonde woman is guardedly friend to Lorna. Although her first question 'when are you coming back home?' is probably not something she wanted to be asked. Scanner also does all the oh-so-human attempts to cooing Aurora while leading Lorna down, to the building garage.

Magneto is waiting for Lorna inside a large hover vehicle. The vehicle is designed on the lines of Genosha's now rather famous flying cars, but considerably larger. It looks designed for transport, but inside Lorna will find a comfortable seating space and her father, waiting. "Lorna, you look well. Please sit down," he offers. Armored, but the helmet rest at his side.

*

Lorna offered a faint, stifled smile to Scanner when the woman made the attempts to coo at Aurora, at least earning an infantile glance of brown eyes her way. Before Aurora wiggled and kicked in Lorna's grip. The black hair dye she'd used that morning hadn't helped in keeping Aurora calm either, who knew that infants latched onto physical things like hair color that much? Or maybe it was the smell..

Either way, the fussy infant continued to whine and gurgle unhappily, as Lorna made her way down to the garage. Her footsteps stalled and halted for the briefest of moments at the sight of the hovercraft and she frowned. "Dad.." She had slipped into calling him that, it had been wrong, so wrong. And Pietro would've been shouting at her to stop normalizing Magneto's behavior and going back.. but it was harder for Lorna to do than she expected.

Slowly, hesitatingly, she climbed into the craft, a frown on her lips as she shifted her grip on Aurora. "I thought we were going to be having the meeting at one of the houses here..? What's with the hovercar?" She exhaled a breath, and glanced down at Aurora again, bouncing the baby girl lightly. More sparks lit up her Lorna's fingertips in response.

*

"We will be in the Spire in twenty minutes," offers Magneto, going quiet for a few seconds when Aurora shows having electric power despite being just a newborn. "This vehicle is shielded against sensors," adds the old man. "Not even telepaths could find us here."

It also moves smoothly, sliding out of the building and taking off with barely an impression of movement inside. "We are also disguised; it is as safe as possible. I can't be away from the Spire for long without causing all kinds of consternation to the alphabet soup agencies of all the human countries. It is almost amusing how nervous they become."

*

A sigh, irritation clearly written on Lorna's features as she smoothed a hand over Aurora's features. As soon as she had sat down the little bundle of baby had grown curiously silent. She was staring at Magneto with wide, dark eyes, chubby hands clenching and unclenching and waving from side to side in a fairly clear sign. Aurora was curious, and on some level, sensed something about her grandfather in much the same way she did her mother. Even if Aurora was too young to have language or be able to understand what her senses were telling her…

There was a sharp interest in the Master of Magnetism. "I wasn't asking about the safety of the transport." She murmured, her voice holding thinly veiled consternation. A grimace and the young mother shifted her hold on the now squirming infant. She exhaled and leaned forward. "Did you want to hold her?"

*

The security is important for him, obviously. Maybe he feels guilty because he failed to protect the wedding. Nathaniel Essex is pretty much the most wanted man in Genosha nowadays. But the old mad scientist has long been in Magneto's sights. Even before the Morlock Massacre.

Hold the child? Magneto didn't expect the offering. But he didn't expect Aurora to be able to… what? Sense his magnetic field? Looks like the baby can feel something. "I would be honored," he replies to Lorna, reaching for the child.

*

Lorna exhaled a breath, passing off Aurora with care to support the baby's frame until her father had secured his hold on her. When she did, of course, the electric sparks faded from her to align with Magneto's natural polarity. A gentle, constant hum of electro-static leaked off Aurora in bursts but didn't threaten to do more. Rather the infant blinked large dark brown eyes up at her grandfather, staring and gurgling up at the old man. Lorna leaned over and tugged off the little hat that had concealed vibrant blue hair.

"Her name is Aurora. Marcos and I are trying to figure out a last name for her to take.. Diaz.. his parents kicked him out. Dane isn't.. wasn't my mother's last name." She pursed her lips together, glancing up at the Master of Magnetism.

"I wanted to give her a middle name from someone in our family."

*

Magneto always hard expression seems to soften slightly when he holds Aurora in his arms. Or maybe it is the alignment of his magnetic field with her electric one. Lorna's odd statement makes him raise his eyes back to her, though. "Our family… as such, it is just me and three estranged children. And this little… Aurora. Lorna, America is not safe for mutants and much less for our family. Pietro and Wanda are labeled terrorists, and I suspect you would too if not for Xavier's influence. Aurora is best kept hidden from all our enemies, which currently include broad sectors of the US government, including the D.E.O."

*

Lorna huffed a breath, she'd tried to squirm something of a relationship out of Magneto before. And wanted to bring those from the past to the forefront. Wanted, in some small way, to try to reach for the family that was lost. That she'd never known, would never know.. Still, she fought the urge to sigh and roll her eyes as she typically did, watching her father's interactions with Aurora.

She slowly nodded, "I figured as much. Given that, well, they know our relation now. The school is the only thing keeping them from labeling me that publicly. It's likely all over their files though." She sat back, smiling faintly as she watched Aurora swing chubby little hands in a grabbing motion toward her grandfather, wiggling in his grip and gurgling. A high pitched sound of baby interest followed.

"Pietro and I already had a chat. We figured that me keeping a low profile is a good idea, staying out of the public eye.. and well, staying at Xavier's for the time being. I dunno when the Registration laws might pass.. if they'll pass. If they do, obviously we won't be staying in the States.. but .." She shrugged.

*

"Those laws already exist in many other countries, even Canada," points out Magneto. "It is a question of time. And when they do, discrimination will become much easier. But then more mutants will come to Genosha… so ironically Genosha is a deterrent for those policies."

The baby is grabbing a finger, which makes the old mutant glance back at her with some interest. A good memory is sometimes a curse because Magneto remembers another baby girl sixty years ago, one that was consumed by fire, and his expression darkens, making Aurora cringe.

"I could hide her," he offers suddenly, looking at Lorna. "Five thousand mutants arrive Genosha every week; it would be easy to contact a good mutant family able and willing to take an 'orphan' baby girl. We would know where she is, but no one else would."

*

Lorna stared at her daughter's figure in Magneto's arms, her father's arms. Three generations in one little hovercraft. It was a broken, jagged little remnant of what should have been a larger family and was not. She swallowed hard a lump in her throat, watching as Aurora grabbed and coo'ed over the finger, giggling and jerking it this way and that in her tiny, chubby hand. As his expression darkened, the baby wiggled, fussed and kicked. Trying in her own little way to rid it of her grandfather's features. Even if that was through the simple baby cries of 'look at me!' essentially. Sparks prickled at her baby fists and fizzled out just as quickly.

Lorna for her part didn't look shocked by her father's suggestion. She'd thought it before. Thought it through time and time again, poking the idea like a fresh wound that stabbed through her heart each time. Jean had mentioned hiding Aurora somewhere with a good family, but Lorna knew Aurora would never be safe in America. She'd gone through her own life hiding as a mutant, her daughter would never, ever, go through that. Genosha was the only choice. Still, what was a shock, was that Magneto had followed through the same considerations. That he hadn't offered or tried to persuade her return to raise Aurora herself .. that was new.

Lorna grimaced, reaching out to run her finger against her daughter's chubby cheek and earning a squeal of a giggle. "She would have to have her powers blocked, or raised by someone with a similar power set that could handle her own.." She murmured. Marcos would never forgive her. Ever. Marcos wouldn't agree to it. Lorna knew that if she waited, talked to him, thought more about it.. it would get harder, if not impossible to let her daughter go.

*

"The second," replies Magneto. "Blocking the powers is unhealthy, surprising them through psychic manipulation is unreliable." It worked on Lorna fairly well, but Magneto had an eye on her all the time. Same would happen to Aurora, but still a second best choice.

"It would be best if you would just live in Genosha, of course," he adds. But the corollary 'where it is safe' is not added. Because Sinister proved to him not even Genosha is safe. But is Xavier's any better? The Spire has (arguably) better security than the School, and Hammer Bay is certainly more pleasant and now has less crime than Mutant Town.

"There have been some advances since you were here," adds the old man, giving Aurora back to Lorna. "The island economy is functional again, international trade takes place through Carrion Cove, which is now in a very convenient legal grey area," just as planned. The embargo was not lifted, as Magneto suspected, so he just sidestepped it at the cost of tolerating a part of the island under partial human control.

For now.

*

Lorna took her daughter back, her heart in her throat. Aurora kicked and fussed, looking up at her mother with wide brown eyes and wriggling in curiosity to look around the hovercraft again via awkward head tilts. Still, Lorna settled a hand on her daughter's chest, rocking her back and forth until she settled once more. Sparks trailed along Lorna's fingertips as a result static that grew no further than her hand.

"Jean suggested a power block. As she had the Professor do to her." She pursed her lips, she had refused sharply at that. And felt even more validated when her father agreed with her on that. Though there was a side eye given to him over it as well, given that that is what he'd done to her. And she knew it.

Still, as he continued onward about her moving back to Genosha she shook her head. "No. If Aurora was here, I'd find her. I'd be unable to stop myself. If Aurora is here.. I won't be. I would be a liability here." She whispered, "It would be a dead give away to people like Sinister." She rocked Aurora back and forth gently, holding her close. The rest, the news about the changes to Genosha were listened to with half an ear. Genosha interested Lorna merely in what it could provide for her daughter, beyond that.. it wasn't on her mind in the same way. Lorna obsessed over what the best option was for her daughter until it had begun to grind her down under the weight of it.

"She doesn't have a birth certificate. She wasn't 'born' in a hospital so there's that." She breathed. Staring down at her daughter.

*

"That power block did a disservice to Jean, delaying her growth for critical years," points out Magneto. "She was stronger than Xavier believed and even now she is not all she could be."

Lorna just stumbled on one of Xavier/Magneto favorite persistent arguments, it seems.

"Ah, but it doesn't matter much now, we have to learn from past mistakes and move on," and it is the moving on where Magneto ever stumbles. "You don't need to make a decision today, but keep Aurora indoors at the school. Do not allow pictures of her taken. The less that it is known of her, the more options you will have in the near future."

*

Lorna pursed her lips, holding Aurora close and closing her eyes briefly as she inhaled, slowly exhaling before she lowered Aurora back into the sling she'd tucked her daughter into. A faint smile tugged at the corners of her lips as Magneto spoke of Jean, the telepath seemed to think that the power block was a good thing. That it helped her. Funny, how different they viewed it. Still, Lorna didn't want the power block done to her daughter either… She wanted Aurora to grow into her powers and cherish them. Not be ashamed of being who she was…

Still, she nodded, smoothing her hands over blue locks. "It's why we don't go out without a hat on her.. why I dye my hair if I take her anywhere.." She murmured softly. "I don't want word to get out that she exists.." She grimaced, looking back to Magneto again.

"I didn't want to be like you.. to abandon her, when I first found out.. about her." She whispered, rocking back in her seat. "I didn't want her to ever feel abandoned.. or like she wasn't wanted. But… I understand.. a little.. I think." She swallowed a hard lump in her throat, looking back down to Aurora's figure.

*

"It was your mother's request, Lorna," admits Magneto, looking away. "I wouldn't have made the rational decision. Anya, your long dead sister, is always in my mind." But he looks at Aurora again, "I am perhaps wiser now. The life of the X-Men is no safer than the life of a so-called terrorist. Your government views you as either tools or threats. You can't hide behind anonymity or those 'secret identities' some costumed adventurers fancy because there is mutant-detection equipment easily available. Ironically it is fear what delays them, not any moral principle. The fear the same X-Men that toppled Genosha's old regime would ally with me against them. But they will move when they feel they can't lose."

*

Lorna nodded, her lips pursed into a thin line as she ran her hand over her daughter's smooth cheek. "I know. Dad. I know. I don't blame you anymore." For that at least. Her voice was soft, gentle, and held a hitch in her breath. She grimaced, her chest tight as she heaved a sigh and glanced around the room, blinking back emotion heavily, before her gaze settled on her father again. "I didn't want her to grow up like me.. but here at least, she'd be raised around mutants.. she wouldn't .. wouldn't feel that way. Like I did." She shifted back and forth in her seat.

"Marcos won't agree to it.. He.. he thinks we can protect her." She sighed heavily and she nodded slowly again. "I don't disagree with you on the government either." She grumbled.

Green eyes lifted from her child and she glanced out the window of the hovercraft again.

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