Show and Tell

September 17, 2018:

Rictor runs into Lorna while he canvasses Mutant Town's homeless youth.

Mutant Town

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

What constitutes a 'dangerous neighbourhood' has always depended on who you are. It also matters how you carry yourself, and whether you treat the people you pass with respect or fear. The man known as Rictor lingers by a group of youth huddled on a stoop. One of the young people is green and blotchy, but tries to hide it with a trucker hat and a hoodie. "Have any of your friends gone missing lately?"

"Man, you gotta be more specific," says one of the kids, a gangly young man with patchy facial hair who can't be more than seventeen. "People go missing, people turn back up again, people show up from somewhere else. Just 'cause they left the streets don't mean they dead."

"Fair enough," says Rictor, hands dug in the pockets of his own hoodie. "But has anyone disappeared who had no reason to?"

*

The green haired daughter of Magneto was out and about in Mutant Town once more. Regardless of her sibling's presence in Mutant Town or not, she had little fear or worry for her own safety within the otherwise filthy and degraded streets there. Between her connections to the Brotherhood or the X-men, she was confident that no one would willingly mess with her. Even if that failed, she was more than confident in her mastery over her own powers.

It showed in the way she strode down the block, her steel toed boots tapping lightly as she walked, her clothes were simple, but clearly well made by the cut and fabric used. A pair of ripped skinny jeans and a black-button down shirt with the sleeves rolled up. Metal studs placed throughout the collar and cuffs.

Lorna's steps slowed as she caught the sound of Rictor's questioning and the lack of any answers from the shuffling youth on the stoop. A tilt of her head, and she shoved her hands into her pockets as she crossed the sidewalk closer to peer over her sunglasses.

She squinted at the young man with green, blotchy skin. "This guy show you a badge or anything?" She asked lightly, peering back at Rictor with a critical gaze and hook of her eyebrow.

*

There's a ripple of laughter from the youth and a wry grin from Rictor.

"Lady, he had to prove he don't have a badge before we'd talk to him," says the kid with the patchy facial hair. The green kid shirks upon being examined.

"I am a private investigator. Some kids, they have been disappearing. Mutant kids. The police mix them in with other missing persons, but I think there is more of a pattern." Rictor's Mexican accent is quite apparent, though his English is very good. He nods towards the youth. "I just wanted to know if someone might have disappeared that no one might have reported."

*

Lorna shrugged, looking at the boys as they laughed, "Polaris. Well, there's plenty of suits that come sniffing around here and frankly they try to entrap a lot of the people with stupid shit. Pardon me for being a bit cautious." She drawled, her lips twitching faintly as she gestured toward Rictor with a flick of green tipped finger nails. "You look human passing." She added, after a moment's consideration. She was defensive over the area at large, with Pietro and Wanda being on the run thanks to that mess with Stark..

She folded her arms and exhaled a breath, "Of course kids are vanishing from around here. They've been snatched for months. Half the time there's no report filed 'cause there's no one to file the report.

*

Her lips twisted and the green haired mutant turned equally colored eyes upon the group, trying to gauge whether or not it was worth her time to ask them anything either.

*

Rictor bites the edge of his lips and twitches something like a grin. He fishes into his wallet and thumbs through the worn leather thing until he reaches the pair he's going for. He holds it up to Lorna. The top is his PI license. The bottom is his mutant registration card. Julio Esteban Richter. "People just call me Rictor though." Before flipping the wallet away, he fishes out ten bucks per kid and hands them over, along with business cards. "You stop hearing from your friends, you call, OK? Mister Alvarez at the bodega on the corner will let you use his phone, or you can leave a message there for me. You don't need to file a police report. You just have to tell me their name and where you saw them last."

The kids look suspicious - of both of them, but they take the money and don't immediately throw away the cards.

He nods once, then steps back and moves off to stop hovering over the kids. There seems to be an unspoken invitation for Lorna to follow if she likes. "What do you know about the disappearances?"

*

The cards with eyed with a twist of her lips following, her arms still folded over her chest as she inspected them. Along with running her powers over his figure in an attempt to figure out if the man was wired or not. Only then did she seem to relax somewhat with his introduction. Her shoulders losing some of their tension. Lorna watched the kids, looking disapprovingly at the ten. But held her tongue on only giving them that much, she'd come to realize that the usage of her father's funds and blood money wasn't something most people had.. hadn't been something she'd had for most of her life. Even now it was coloring her behavior and judgement.

That finished as he turned to continue onward, she followed suit. The question had her tilting her head up to consider the clouds above in a seemingly idle manner. "There's been a few different groups snatching kids for the past few months. One was running a mutant experiments operation. Using the kids as test subjects. Another.." Her lips twisted.

"A slave auction. They've been auctioning off mutants to the highest bidders. Broke up a few operations down by the docks last month.." She murmured.

*

"Mhmph." That's quite a displeased sound from Rictor. He digs his hands into his pockets and rolls his shoulders up and back. "What you have is a class of people who are seen as disposable but also as living weapons. It is not a good combination." He looks back over his shoulder. "And the kids who have it the worst are the ones who look strange but do not have a power that protects them. They must rely on their friends, but sometimes their friends can be bought." He's saying that as a statement of fact rather than with judgment.

He side-eyes her for a moment, then grins a little. "I do not meet too many mutants who come from privilege, but I believe I am meeting one now."

*

A nod and a soft sigh followed his first words, her steps light as she walked alongside him and found nothing lacking in his surmised statements. A glance was spared behind her briefly and she glanced back to Rictor. Her lips twitched briefly as she pulled down the sunglasses to peer at him more fully. The grin and comment about privilege has her snorting lightly, and rolling her eyes upwards.

"What, you haven't figured me out already? How many green haired women run around here these days?" She drawled lightly, her steps slowing slightly as she pushed the expensive sunglasses back to settle atop her head.

"Lorna Dane, Polaris. Internationally known for being Magneto's youngest daughter and only one in the family not wanted for terrorism. Plus that whole, being on Genosha's council and having my wedding wrecked on live TV.." She murmured, her voice twisting with a dryness that belittled the events she described. People had died and Magneto had gone into extremes to shut down the island afterward.

"I dunno if privilege is the word to use."

*

"It's the word I would use, if you never had to worry about selling out your friends so you would not starve," says Rictor with a shrug. "Forgive me, I don't mean to come off as cold, but I am much more concerned about what happens in this neighbourhood than what is internationally known." And then, a soft chuckle with a twinkle in his eyes. "Mhmm, I see more green hair than you'd think. They have your colour in the salons, you know." He makes a vague motion to his own hair.

*

Lorna shook her head slowly, "I never had to sell out my friends no, I was lucky. Privileged in that case, sure. And what happens internationally is affecting this neighborhood. People didn't have access to slave collars so much before. Now? Former Genoshan tech is everywhere. And they bring their beliefs that mutants make real good slaves." She murmured, eyeing him.

"Or the fact that a lot people sell everything they have here to get to Genosha, or try to. A lot of trafficking goes on there too." She arched a brow as she turned her gaze from the street ahead back to him as he made a comment about her hair color being found in salons. She smirked, and with a flick of her hands, a discarded mess of screws and nails from the alleyway and gutters around them came flying up to her hand.

"Can't get that in a salon, you know."

*

"Show and tell is not necessary, Miss Dane," says Rictor as he nods towards the bits of floating metal. "I only meant the fact that your hair is green is not a sure marker of being a mutant. That is…" he waggles a finger. "But again, not necessary."

He lifts a shoulder at her explanation. "True enough, but I am just one man, and what I do is try to look out for the ones who are forgotten. I deal with the problems in front of me. Others concern themselves with international politics."

*

A shrug and Lorna let the scrap metal fall away. "My green hair is something I was forced to hide for a long time because it marked me as different, Rictor. This is one of the few places where no one expects that of me." She murmured softly, even at his finger wag. She pushed the long green curls back from her face, her steps light against the cracked pavement beside him.

"And call me Lorna, or Polaris. No one calls me Miss Dane. It's not even technically mine anyways.." She muttered. She was married for starters. And.. well, Dane had been her step-father's name. Not her mother's maiden name… It had never belonged to her.

Her steps slowed to a pause and she fished out a scrap piece of paper from her purse, and with a click of her pen, scrawled out a number to hand to him.

"I have a few friends that work around here. If you find anyone that needs a place to crash, or medical care you can call me." Her gaze swept up to consider him again, her lips pursed together.

"We need more people helping Mutant Town that aren't playing judge and jury around here." She added after a moment, before she made to salute him with two fingers. "If you'll excuse me, I've gotta meeting to run to. See you around."

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