A New Old Friend

November 22, 2014:

A chance encounter between Cal and Emma.

Mutant Town

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

It is not often that Emma comes to Mutant Town as, in her opinion, this part of the city is not much better than most any slums and if there one thing she does not do it's go 'slumming'. But something - no, someone - caught her attention during an idle sweep of her telepathy over the Big Apple and she wanted to see just what this person is about.

One cab ride later and she arrives, her powers used discreetly before she even has a chance to step out of the vehicle. It will take a bit of time for her to find the subject of her curiosity this way but she does not dare using her powers at their full strength unless necessary. No sense in drawing unwanted attention to herself, after all.

There's no doubt that winter is approaching. Most of the residents of Mutant Town are bundled up but some, notably but not limited to those with natural fur or other insulation, don't seem to pay much attention to the cold. Cal seems to be one of them given that his jacket is lighter weight than most would consider warm enough. He's partaking of one of the best parts of winter in the city: roasted chestnuts from a cart on the corner. Leaning against a nearby light post, he's taking his time enjoying the seasonal treat when something catches his attention. The telepathic touch is light and subtle but he's an experienced telepath himself, at least when he's mimicking one. Casually looking around, he tries to see if it's from someone nearby or an extended sweep. His gaze passes right over Emma at first but then comes back to her in a small double take. Eating the last chestnut, he tosses the paper plate into the trash he passes on his way toward her. "Emma?"

Emma turns slightly upon hearing her name, the voice not familiar to her. Neither is the one it belongs to. The attempt to find the mutant she has been looking for is halted and she now prods at Calvin's mind, trying to figure out how he knows her name when he is, as far as she can tell, a stranger to her. "I am sorry," she eventually says while glancing at Cal a bit more closely once she approaches, "but I do not think we've met." Now, in hindsight, she realizes he might have seen her picture in the paper (as CEO of Frost Industries), so perhaps that is how? But that doesn't really explain how he addresses her in such a familiar fashion.

Cal's mind shield is strong enough to repel any casual attempts to probe him. "No, you're right. We haven't met here." he agrees with a smile, coming to a stop far enough away not to intrude on her 'space' but close enough they can talk quietly with little chance of being overheard by those with normal hearing. "I don't know how much you know about dimensional theory?"

"Dimensional theory." The echoed words are spoken slowly. "I know a little of the subject." Emma's forte most certainly does not fall along the lines of other dimensions and the sciences involved in that, but pretty much everyone knows of the basics behind it. "Are you saying…?" Glancing around, she falls quiet outwardly but she doesn't fall silent entirely, the telepath attempting to speak to Calvin via telepathy. "Are you saying you're from another dimension?"

"Another reality." Cal agrees, switching to telepathy as well. "Which is a little different from dimensions actually but I'm not a physicist to explain it well." So they're not just standing there looking at each other without speaking, he half turns to watch the traffic passing back and forth. "And we knew each other in several of them. For certain definitions of 'we' of course. I was wondering where in this reality you were." Which isn't quite true since he did know about Frost Industries but wasn't really what he was meaning.

A slow nod is given and she grins, Emma unable to keep the smile from forming. "Ah. I see," she speaks out loud. "And how long have you been here?" Anyone hearing her question might assume that she is merely asking how long Cal's been in the city, or something. Definitely not a question that would rouse suspicion. "And how are you liking your stay?" Nice and casual.

"Three years, give or take." Cal answers out loud. "And quite well. I had the option of staying or going though which always makes that kind of thing better. Found a lot of old friends that were new again. But also some old friends who ended up less than friends, unfortunately. One can never tell who someone has become."

New old friends. Another something the blonde has not experienced but she can grasp the gist of it enough to realize that it must have been a comfort for the man to see familiar faces, even if they might not have known him. "I am glad for you." Emma slides her hands into the deep pockets of her winter coat, the white woolen garment more than enough to keep her warm. "Although… I am sorry that some of your friends had changed."

cal nods but shrugs. "It's the way things are. There are differences from place to place, people grow in different ways, react in different ways, make different choices. Sometimes extreme differences." Since they're actually speaking, he turns back to face Emma fully. "I was surprised to not see you before today." Though as Mimic he's interfered with her plans without knowing it.

"Ah, yes. That does tend to happen. Nothing is static, after all." Heck, some of the people in Emma's own life have gone and turned, more than a few people who were once close to her anything but now including some of her own family. Chuckling slightly, she glances into Cal's eyes, the smile now something more akin to sad in its nature. "I've been around. Newspapers, on TV. You just have not been paying attention."

"But not where I was expecting to see you." Cal returns. "Or how. Which I am glad to see." He projects the image of Emma in a wheelchair, talking to a number of other people though except for Cal's, their identities are blurred out. "Some things change for the better."

A wheelchair? Well, that's startling. Emma blinks once and then goes wide-eyed and even goes a bit pale. "Wh… oh." Clearing her throat, she glances here and there, taking a few seconds to try and compose herself. "I can give you my phone number, if you'd like to stay in touch."

"I certainly would." Cal agrees and shifts to telepathy. "You must be aware of the X-Men." The public teams if not the blue. "Did you never think to contact us? You could do so much good with your abilities. And not having to hide who you are and what you can do is something we all should be able to do when we're among our own."

A business card is pulled from her left coat pocket and handed over, the fancy kind that has the contact information etched into a thin sheet of frosted plastic. "I've heard of them." As the card is passed over Emma adds mentally, "I do good where I am." Just never mind that the 'good' is the self-serving kind, usually. "But perhaps someday.."

Cal takes the card and slips it into a pocket. "I'll text you so you have my number. Perhaps we can talk somewhere quieter where I can try to convince you that someday should come sooner than later." Mind to mind, he adds "I have examples from multiple realities that prove you can be a powerful addition to the team if you choose to be."

Emma shakes her head and laughs, that being to the latter he said to her silently. "You can try," she replies telepathically, "but let's meet somewhere. Perhaps coffee at my place." Not often that invitations to her penthouse are given. Cal has her interest piqued, however, and she would like to see what he has to say, if nothing else.

"Consider it a date." Cal says, smiling at Emma. "We can work out the when later. It was nice seeing you again." He's about to turn away when he laughs. "Sorry, I just realized… Call me Cal."

Emma takes a slow deep breath before she too laughs, a sound that's warm. "Cal. I like that. Give me a call and we'll think of a time to do that coffee… thing." She turns herself, now, and goes about what it is that brought her to Mutant Town to begin with, that being her search for the mysterious person who pinged on her proverbial radar.

Cal just nods and walks back to the cart to get some more chestnuts. A lot more, in fact. They'll still be piping hot when he takes the back to the Institute.

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