(2018-08-10) Garden Party
Garden Party
Summary: A group of students (and a potential student) chat in the back lawn.
Date: 2018-08-10
Related: None
NPCs: None
Scene Runner: NA

Hippity hoppity hip. A little grey bunny hops through the grass in the back lawn. It seems pretty oblivious to the approaching storm. The few last rays of the sunset and the light coming from the house provide enough light for him to see well. He hops right up to the hedge maze and starts to eat some of the dormant flowers that line the edge of it.

Sierra makes her way over to the hedge maze in stealth mode. Keeping low and moving quickly. After finding a supervillain base under the maze, the students have been told to stay away…as if Sierra would listen to that? She notices the bunny and smiles sweetly. "Hey. Where did you come from? You don't want to be near the maze. Bad things inside."

As soon as he hears the voice, the bunny (always in flee mode) takes off hopping away. After a few feet, it stops and looks back over its shoulder. Its little nose moves back and forth making his whiskers dance as he sniffs. He then hops straight up, turns around and lands looking right at Sierra. He has the blue/green eyes that Buddy is known for. Seeing her, his ears perk straight up, and he hops quickly towards her.

A smirk as the bunny heeds her warning and hops off…and then it is coming back? That is odd. Sierra crouches down and peers at the approaching rabbit. She can't help but notice the eyes. "Buddy? Is that you? Why are you still outside? Have any of the teaches come to see you yet?" She pulls a flower free from the ground and offers it to Buddy.

When she pulls the flower free, Buddy bunny hops right up to it and starts nibbling on it. His ears twitch as he does so in happiness. Once he is done, he shifts to a boy, so it is easier to answer her questions. He is still hunched over like a bunny though it doesn't seem to bother him. He pops right up to his feet in his hyper fashion of his. "Nuh uh. I don't want to go inside. Inside is scary. Can't escape from inside. Granger and Shocky Man kept me inside. Wouldn't let me out. Ever!"

Sierra glances over at the school with Buddy's words and can only shrug in semi-agreement. "Yeah, school can be a scary place, but they won't lock you up or anything. I mean, look, I'm outside. No one's bothered. And when it rains and snows, I would /much/ rather be inside" she winks. "And we need to find your parents too. We can't do that if you stay out here."

Buddy shrugs and says, "Oh, I don't mind the rain and snow. I lived in the woods for a long time between Susie and Granger. I don't know how long it was though. The leaves changed, and it snowed though." He does perk up when she mentions finding his parents. "That would be great. I hope they haven't forgotten about me. Do you think they were glad to get rid of me? I'm not a normal son, and I know I caused problems for them and my grandparents and the police."

"Don't be silly. No parent is happy to lose their child" Sierra replies. She comes from a rather huge Mexican family, so the thought that parents wouldn't love their children is alien to her. She even misses them. "If you caused problems then it was only because you have powers you don't understand. Maybe they didn't either, but they still love you and no way would they have forgotten you. Another reason you need to be in the school. To learn about who you are."

Buddy thinks about it for a moment and actually tilts his head to the side like he would as a dog. It seems some mannerisms transfer over. "You are probably right. You are smart and pretty. That's pretty awesome, Fire Fist Girl. First time I changed, I didn't even realize it. I would often go out and play as an animal outside in the yard. Then one day I was one and my mommy and daddy treated me like for a few days. I thought we were just all playing along. I didn't realize until later that they had been searching for me and called the police." He turns and looks at the house. "Are you sure that it is okay to go inside?"

"I try to be smart" Sierra blushes before quirking one of her eyebrows up into the air at her name. "Call me Sierra. I don't think 'Fire Fist Girl' will be very popular" she smirks. "Though I suppose I should get a 'proper' name. The school doesn't like 'Hot Tamale'." She nods to his story. "See…that proves they love you and wanted you to be with them. And, yeah, it will be okay to go inside. Do it as a boy though, okay? Then people won't get confused about an animal roaming the halls. Once they know it is you, they will be fine if you want to change."

"Si-er-ra?" Buddy says trying to get it right. "I don't mean to be bad. I'm just not good with names. In the wild, the other animals don't really have names. They are just called what they are. So, I think of you as the girl with the Firey hand because it was so cool when you should me that one time." Buddy then starts laughing really hard. "Cool? Fire? I guess it was hot." When he finally calms down, he looks over at the door and says, "Is the Blue Girl there?"

"Blue girl? Oh…Stephanie? Yeah, she is in there too. Probably up in her room listening to music really loud" Sierra grins before looking a little confused. "All the animals have the same name? Really? That must get very confusing. Oh…do you mean if they have a bad leg they're called 'Bad Leg Dog' and another is called 'Head Spot Dog'? Still…not very precise." A nod towards the school. "You want to try it? Oh…we'll be moving schools soon anyway, so they need to know about you so that you can come along too. You don't want to be abandoned here, do you?"

Buddy nods his head when she catches on about the names. "I guess they are more descriptions than name. What they are, looked like or even acted like." He pauses for a moment and explains. "I was just thinking that if Blue Girl, er, Stepha'nie (he puts the accent on the wrong syllable) was in there she could break me out if someone locked the door." He is really worried about being captured again. "I don't want to be abandoned, but I would survive." If anything, he is a survivor. "Why are you moving schools? Do you not like this one? I thought it was made for people like us."

"This school was always only temporary. I think it is someone's house. We used to have a school on an island but that was destroyed by dinosaurs and stuff. I was in Mexico when it happened" Sierra explains. "So, now we're going back to a school that was /built/ for people like us. And you don't have to worry about breaking out. There are plenty of people who could get you out if you need to leave. Can't you turn into an ant and just crawl out?"

"Dinosaurs?! I know it." Buddy looks like he is fighting turning into some animal and getting out of there, but he doesn't want to be rude to the pretty girl. "I would be delicious to dinosaurs. They could have their fun eating all sorts of animals if they got a hold of me." He crosses his arms in an obvious self-hugging gesture. "Ant? I don't know. I haven't tried something that small before. Or that different."

"The dinosaurs are gone" Sierra assures him and won't mention how they found a few students delicious. "It won't happen again. We'll kick their ass if anyone tries that again" she smiles. "What animals have you tried? I mean, a bird is pretty different too…isn't it? Have you tried a snake or anything like that?"

Buddy seems relieved when she says that the dinosaurs are gone. He lowers his arms down and shakes his head at her questions. "I've done German shepherd, that was the first one I did. Then a kitty cat. I learned how to become a bird to get away from Susie, and it was when I became a bunny that Granger saw me and got me. Last night, oh!, Last night I became a raven. I saw Wingy Girl do it and so I tried. It worked."

"Hmm…this is the kind of thing that cleverer people than me can help you with" Sierra pouts. "I mean…maybe you can only change into warm blooded animals? I dunno. I'm only guessing. I do that a lot. Who changed into a raven? Oh…Rain?" The two of them are chatting near the hedge maze, Sierra trying to get Buddy to come inside the school.

Buddy points his right hand at her pouting lip and asks, "Why is your lip poking out like that?" Then she asks her question, "Oh, it was a girl, uh, I'm not sure. She is this tall." He holds his hand the exact height for Fee. "She has big pretty wings and does something with light. She liked my wings too." He smiles looking rather proud.

"There are plenty of students I haven't met yet" Sierra shrugs before glancing down at her lip…and sucking it back in. "Don't worry about the lip. It's just me being grumpy. I think the teachers call it 'petulant'. I'm sure your wings are lovely. I just fly without them." The Latina offers a warm smile to the shifter. "So, gonna try coming inside?"

Coming out from the back of the house, Kaylee's still wearing the warmups from her Thunder Bay travelling team, though she's at least deposited her gym bag inside. "I've just been in a gym under artificial lights all day, so I wanna spend some time AWAY from them before bed, so I'm not as keyed up," she's explaining to Sydney as they stroll onto the back lawn. "I mean, especially with the halogens in the gym? I'm still pretty rarin' to go."

Sydney walks with Kaylee. She's definitely not dressed for basketball, Thunder Bay or otherwise. Some might even call her t-shirt tacky. But hey, she was there to watch Kaylee practice with the team. She nods, listening, as Kaylee talks about her powers and the effects of the light on them. "Yeah, kinda like when I eat stainless steel. It's kind of fizzy and like drinking caffeine.

Buddy tilts his head to look at Sierra and asks, "What is a -petulant-? Is it yummy?" When she says that she can fly without wings, he is impressed. "Wow, that is amazing." He bounces on his toes a little bit and says, "Did you want to see my wings again? I can go in the house…for a little bit. I don't think I want to be in there too long. Hi Shiny Girl!" He waves his hand high over his head as he sees Sydney. "And hello pretty girl I don't know. I'm Buddy!"

"I think petulant means 'Person who is always right but makes bossy people uncomfortable'" Sierra replies, pretty sure that is what it means. "Stay as a boy" she smiles, "At least for now." Sierra looks over to the new arrivals and waves. "Hey, Syd. Kaylee. Did you win, Kaylee?" Her brow furrows. "Is basketball season back on?"

Without her glasses, Kaylee hadn't quite made out who was in the area, but Sierra's voice is a dead giveaway. Smiling, she waves in her animated fashion, hand flailing back and forth next to her head. "Hi Sierra! How are you!?" However, at Buddy's greeting, she blinks a little and turns to look at Sydney. "Um … do you know him? … or was he calling YOU shiny?" Because that's totally a first, someone ELSE being called Shiny in Kaylee's presence.

She shrugs her confusion away, though, and offers Buddy a similarly frenetic wave. "Hey there!" And then she turns her attention back to Sierra. "And it was just practice, so there's no winners or losers. And didn't you know I was on a travel team down in Thunder Bay?" she asks, her head canting to the side. "I've done this like, every summer I've been up here! Tryouts were this week, but I'm a legacy, so I was more helping than actually trying out. And … I mean, I don't wanna brag or anything, but I think it'd be pretty hard to replace me. I mean, I AM six two!" She grins at the last, holding her hand parallel to her eyebrows.

Sydney is caught off-guard once again by Kaylee's inability to see/ability with spatial perception. "I know him, so that makes me shiny and you pretty girl he doesn't know. Hey Buddy, Hey Sierra. This is Kaylee. She is, as you say, very pretty. Also, she kicks ass at basketball. Least as far as I can tell." Syd shrugs. "How've you guys been?"

"Stay as a boy. Got it." Buddy takes a deep breath and is prepared to head towards the scary building. Thankfully the conversation seems to be at least postponing that entrance. Not having the social graces to know Kaylee was talking to Sierra, Buddy just hops in the conversation. He was just a bunny so hopping seems appropriate. "Thunder Bay? It sounds noisy. Is there lightning there too? I don't like lightning much. Reminds me of Shocky Man." He looks really surprised and amazed when says she is six two. "You are six two? Amazing! That is .. amazing." He then puts his hands down by his side and leans forward a bit. "Six two what?" he asks as innocent as he sounds.

"Basketball…basketball.." He says the word a few times trying to remember it. He starts to make a bit of a face trying to remember something from back then. He then shakes his his head like clearing out some combwebs. "I've been okay. I learn to fly as a Raven from a pretty girl with big dark wings. It was fun. And I just had a wonderful dinner of flower petals and leaves. Yummmy!"

"You know me, Kaylee. I'm terrible about remembering about other people. Way too selfish…and petulant" Sierra teases the tall girl…almost a foot taller than the Latina! A little smirk at Kaylee's ego but…she is probably right. "There'll be new students soon for you to recruit. I hope they don't get in your way." She stands to hug both of the new arrivals. "You're pretty too, Sydney" Sierra winks. "Kaylee, this is Buddy. Shifter. Trying to get him to come inside so the teachers can help him find his parents. Vegetarian too…except when he's a cat or a dog I guess."

Kaylee pauses for a second to give Buddy a quizzical look. "… I'm six feet, two inches tall, Buddy," she explains when he doesn't get it, a smirk tugging up the corners of her lips. She then wraps Sierra in a full Kaylee-hug, which involves her wrapping her arms completely around Sierra and squeeeezing for a second, before releasing and smiling. "You're not selfish, Sierra. … petulant, though, sounds about right. You're not good at not getting your way," she teases, giving the Latina a wink. "It's nice to meet you, Buddy! Welcome to Coral Springs! … er … well … I mean, you'll be coming to Coral Springs when we move back, right?"

Canting her head to the side again, Kaylee listens to the conversation about learning to fly and her eyebrows go up as she smiles. "You mean Fionna-lua?" she asks, happily. "Fee is such a sweetie! I'm sure she had a wonderful time teaching you to fly!" She then turns and wrinkles her nose as she sticks her tongue out at Sydney. "Sierra's right, you're pretty, too, so it coulda been either of us. And thanks. I've worked really hard at getting better, so it means a lot!"

Sydney grins. "Thanks." She chuckles, watching Kaylee and Sierra and Buddy. "I've heard of Fee but I don't think I've met her yet. And yeah, welcome to the school."

Buddy looks at Kaylee with the classic Oooooh face. "Pe - tu - lant." He sounds the word out still trying to get use to it. "I don't know. I'm a bit confused about it. I was told this was the school, but the school is moving. This place was made for people like me but they are moving. I think it might be fun to go to school again. I haven't been to school in a long time." He then leans in a bit too close to Kaylee as though he doesn't understand personal space. "Your eyes are really pretty." He looks at her amazing blue eyes with his eyes, the right one is blue and then left eye is an emerald green. He then suddenly looks at Sydney with big puppy dog eyes. "I didn't mean to say that you aren't pretty. Did I say you aren't pretty? I mean I didn't say you are pretty because you are so shiny. But you are pretty. I mean it. Please don't be mad at me. I didn't try to be bad. Honest!"

Sierra pouts at being accused of petulance by Kaylee. "I am not" she mumbles. "It's not my fault people won't do what I want when it is /obviously/ best for them" she sniffs, before stepping back so Buddy can get in close. "I haven't met her either" Sierra nods to Sydney before a playful grin. "How's Cheekbones?" A little wiggle of her eyebrows before she asks. "So when are we going to the new school? Is it back where it was, Kaylee?" Sierra really needs to read the Announcements Board more.

"Awww! Thank you, Buddy! You're sweet," Kaylee responds, only slightly backing her face away when Buddy leans in close. Without her glasses, she can't see his eyes at all. He'll also notice that her pupils don't dialate or focus on him at all when he moves closer, though they do sort of track his movements- much like any person who is mostly blind but can still make out shapes and stuff. "But you didn't say she WASN'T pretty, you just identified us as 'shiny' and 'pretty' and we're BOTH shiny, so I wasn't sure who you thought was pretty," Kaylee explains, winking. And then, she's turning to smirk at Sierra. "And that is why you're petulant. But, don't worry! I am absolutely the biggest baby ever when I don't get my way, so we've got that in common," she says, winking. Then, she smiles and talks about one of her favorite things: school! "Oh, we won't move for like a couple weeks yet! Well, maybe like a week and a half? I'm sure they'll probably be giving us tours of the facility and stuff soon and showing us how the team arrangements will work and stuff. They're using what's left of the old school, but I THINK that they've built a lot of new stuff in its place, since it was kinda demolished and stuff."

Sydney says, "They said it's on an island too. I hope it's pretty. Was the old school under water? I heard it was. I'm hoping they changed that." Syd shudders."

Buddy watches as Sierra pouts again. He isn't quite sure what to do but remember seeing Kaylee hug her, so he moves up quickly besides her and gives her a quick impulsive hug hoping it helps. He then looks to Kaylee and says, "I'm not good with names so I tend to think of people as animals do, by descriptions. I'm sorry. I'm not good at being a boy anymore." He tilts his head to the side to ask, "Is something wrong with <yawn> your eye?" He yawns again. "Maybe we can try the scary house tomorrow. I think I should go find a place to sleep." With that, he drops down to the ground and becomes a little tabby cat before he hits the ground. He starts to pad off to a place out in the back lawn where he sleeps.

Sierra sighs as Buddy shifts once more and heads out into the wild. "Okay, Buddy" she calls out after him, "But you need to come inside soon. Okay? Just for a bit." She turns back to the other girls and shrugs. "I see what they mean about herding cats" she giggles. "Oh, Kaylee, did you hear that we found a supervillain lair under the hedge.
Probably a good idea we're moving back." A solemn nod to Sydney. "Yep, most of it was underwater. It was really freaking looking out the window to see a fish swim past. Try not to punch a hole in the wall, Syd."

"Have a good night, Buddy!" Kaylee offers, waving at the boy-turned-kitteh. Then, she smirks, and is unable to contain her mirth as the smirk breaks into a smile and she shakes her fists a little and points. "Oh gosh! He's a kitty! Oh gosh, that's so cute! He's TOTALLY joining Prometheus," she decides, watching him walk away. Because such decisions are up to her or something. Or not. She turns and offers Sydney a reassuring smile. "You'll be safe, Sydney. Promise. The old school was PRETTY indestructible. There was just a hole into a different dimension and it kinda 'sploded on us. So, as long as we don't go around leaving any holes like that unplugged, we should be fine!"
News of the villain's lair, however, draws her attention and Kaylee's eyebrows shoot up. "Wait, there was what!? Is everybody okay? Did we beat the bad guy? Gosh, basketball keeps me so busy … I had no idea!"

Sydney waves g'night at Buddy, and nods slowly at 'try not to punch a hole in the wall.' "Yanno, if that had been in the brochure, I might have gone to the place in Texas. I have this thing about drowning." She takes another slow breath. "Bryce is fine, least he was last I saw him. It's been a few days though. The lair is in under the hedge maze. You get in it from the fountain. It was Dr. Wraith's. The computer said it hadn't been opened in 75 years."

Sierra nods in agreement to Sydney's words about the base. "Yeah, it's a really old one. No idea what happened to this Doctor Wraith but the A.I. inside thought I was them. Not sure what that says about me or Doctor Wraith. So, no one to beat up." Why does she sound disappointed about that? "I did get this really cool mummified head though!" A frown at Sydney. "If you went to Texas then you wouldn't have met me, so that's not a good thing." Her brow furrows. "Though Texas would be a lot closer to my family. Why didn't they send me to Texas?"

Kaylee frowns distinctly at the discussion of underground lairs. However, talk of being at other schools quickly changes her expression as she smiles and waves her hand through the air as if to dispel the ideas of being anywhere besides Coral Springs. "They didn't send you there because here is clearly the best. What's to wonder?" she says. And no, she doesn't get paid for being the school's spokesperson and cheerleader. "Anyway! I'm pretty bushed, and I think I've probably gotten battery levels down where I could sleep now, so I'm gonna head to bed. I hope you weren't too bored watching practice today, Sydney! And it's really good to see you, Sierra!" And then she pauses, as something occurs to her. "Hey, how's SeeSee? I haven't had a chance to catch up with her in like, a couple weeks."

Sydney shakes her head. "Nah. Trust me, it wasn't boring except for the times you weren't on the floor. And yeah… the one in Texas was a lot more expensive and attached to some church or other. I didn't figure I'd fit in well there, you know? I'm not what you'd call religious." She'll hug Kaylee unless the tall young woman seems to object. "Sleep tight."

"A church! Oh, hell no…excuse the pun" Sierra replies, remembering how her local priest wanted to burn her at the stake. "I guess hit is the better place." Even without Kaylee's promotion work. "SeeSee is awesome." The Latina's smile returning big and bright. Best not to tell the school's favorite student how one of their bedrooms is usually not used at night. "So sweet and curious. I've lost count how many marshmallows I've toasted. Good night, Kaylee. I hope you get a good team out of the new kids." Since Sierra is seventeen, she is obviously an adult and the new students are kids. "Wanna go for a walk, Syd?"

Of course Sydney gets a hug! Hugging is one of Kaylee's favorite things to do with friends! She'll even get a glomp, and some rocking, as Kaylee wraps her arms around the smaller girl and squeeeeeeeeeezes. "Nini, Siddy!" she says. Because her favorite people get shorter names, if at all possible. Especially ending in 'ee,' since that's how all the cutest names in the world end. "And I'm so glad to hear that, Sierra. The last time we got to talk, there was a LOT of stuff she was uncertain about, but hopefully she's gotten much better adjusted and stuff." And then momma Kaylee comes out, as she waggles her finger at Sierra. "But don't you go trying to get her to do more than she's ready for, or to get her to make out alla time! I know YOU love PDA and showing off, but make sure she's okay with it first!" … which is probably advice coming way too late to really matter, considering how long the two have been dating now. AND NO, NOT THAT WAY! "Nini, Sierra. Nini, Siddy. See you guys in the morning!" she says as she heads back towards the house, waving both hands at the two girls before she turns away.

Sydney squeezes back firmly, turning her cheek so that her ear winds up against Kaylee's chest instead of her face. She waves as Kaylee gives advice and heads off, then turns to Sierra. "Sure. Sorry I've been scarce. There've been a lot of odd jobs on Craigslist that I could do, and I want to go into the school year with some cash. I have friends. I'd like to give Christmas gifts, you know?" She chuckles a little at Sierra.

"Don't worry, Momma Kaylee" Sierra sighs to the tall girl. "I didn't push Saoirse to do anything she didn't want to do. Luckily, she wants to do it now" she giggles before a playful slap of Kaylee's elbow…she can't reach her shoulder. "Get out of here and get to bed." Once Kaylee is safely on her way to the school, the Latina looks at Sydney and asks, "What's PDA? And don't worry about being scarce. I'm sort of on a scholarship. A really low income scholarship. I should probably do some work too. I don't think being paid to hack student's grades will be looked upon well. Oooh…Christmas. Yeah, never too early to think about that. What kind of jobs are you doing?"

Sydney says, "Public Display of Affection. And you and Sao are…" She pauses, then looks at Sierra. "Well I guess it is fucking…"

"I don't think Saoirse would call it that" Sierra giggles, a warm smile as she thinks about her girlfriend. "She would have her very own name for it. Something cute and so her." A shrug. "I think I'm pretty hooked on her, Syd" she sighs before a tight hug for her metal skinned friend. "Though I'm never sure how much I should talk about it with what happened between the three of us. So…how about we talk about you? You're way more interesting anyway. You still up for that rave?"

Sydney hugs Sierra tight. "I'm glad you're happy. I'm glad she's happy too." Syd smiles a little weakly. Jealous? maaaaybe a little. She goes on hugging another moment. "I won't tell you I'm not a little envious… I mean… the idea of… going to bed with another woman is still new, weird, and hot to me, but I also like you and her both lots. But… I'm taking things slow for a change. Hanging with Steph a lot… trying not to be a total stick in the mud to her, you know? And yeah. I'm up for the rave. I'm thinking Bryce probably isn't, and that's ok. Steph… might be. But I'm up for it. After the other day I'm realizing how afraid of everything I still am, and I don't like it."

"We both know you didn't mean any harm. At least, I know" Sierra smiles. "Yeah, we're pretty happy. Hey, maybe you could date Kaylee too? I hear boys like the idea of girls being together. so Bryce might not mind. It's probably in one of those fancy books he reads. And going to bed with another woman is /totally/ hot" she winks. "Steph is pretty cool. We hang out sometimes. Share a joint. She would be good with a concert but not sure she would like the music at a rave. But, it's not just about the music so we should definitely ask if she wants to come along. And you are sooo not a stick in the mud. That is just crazy talk. I think you're brave. You've been through so much, how could you not be?"

Sydney looks over at Sierra and nods. "I think Bryce's brain would melt. I'm not even sure he's ever… you know… on his own. We are casual enough to date other people too, but…" Syd looks at the ground. "I'm not sure I'm up to it. I have all this experience but most of it was… get high, lie back, and enjoy the ride, you know? I care about him. How he'll feel going forward. And it's paralyzing.

Sierra nods to Sydney's words, encouraging her to walk with her. Just friends on a summer night stroll around the grounds. "You cannot assume how he feels about something. That way you will never do anything. If he agreed to you seeing other people, then he cannot be upset if you see other people. I do not think Bryce is hypocritical." She snorts in amusement. "And there is me deciding how he feels like I just told you not to." A frown about Sydney's sex life. "At least you enjoyed the ride, si? That is how I have been with boys. It is girls who make if fly…does that make sense? You should not be paralyzed. Like I said, you agreed something."

Sydney nods. "I just… it's like I've been in the mud so long I forgot what being clean even looks like. Here he came along clean and it's… on the one hand, teaching him to get dirty would probably be fun and help him get through his stuff, but at the same time I have to ask myself, am I trying to make him into something I understand. I mean yes, I know. He's got a brain and a mouth and his own opinion. But I know more about this stuff than he does.

Sydney also nods. "Yeah. I enjoyed the ride. Most of the time.

"You don't have to think of it as dirty" Sierra suggests, before a little giggle. "Only when you are doing it right." A quick shake of her head. "I am only kidding. If you enjoy it…or if with someone you care about…then sex is not dirty, even if you do very naughty things. It enriches the soul. It can bond you. You share something so personal. I do not think sex with Bryce will make either of you dirty. And if you think this relationship is something meaningful, then it will happen one day. When you are both ready."

Sydney looks at Sierra as though she's sprouted a second head. Or perhaps as though she's kissed Sydney again, and the body-wide brain is digesting that and whole ways of thinking are at risk of being changed. "I. Um." She just squeezes Sierra tight. "Sorry. I'm just… you made me look at where I got the dirty idea from…" She shakes her head. "I've tried to reject everything else he taught me in that time… but not that. And that is one of the things that needs to go.

Sierra returns the hug, a little confused. "That bad man that used to abuse you?" She isn't sure if it was abuse but he was much older so it was probably illegal…and that makes it abuse. "Don't give up things you enjoy out of spite" she notes. "Just make them yours." She screws up her nose. "Sounds like he made you feel guilty and bad about things you enjoyed. Those kind of people really suck." A pause. "Of if they did suck they would feel better about the world…if you know what I mean."

Sydney blinks and looks at Sierra, as though trying to take a breath. Then she stops, closes her eyes and laughs gently. "Oh. You mean Karol. Iron Fist. No, we sparred every day. He took me out on one date and danced with me, and he kissed me one time. That was it. I mean, we used to scotch-brite the rust off each other, buck-ass naked, and never *once* was it more than that. He was in many ways an evil man, but that wasn't one of them. He also did save my life, whether he meant to or not. So. No. He's not who I was talking about. Nor even Dr. Wolf, who made me metal. It would have been like bestiality for him to touch me that way.

"So who were you talking about?" Sierra asks before a dismissive wave of her hand and a sigh. "You don't have to tell me. I'm probably being really dumb. In my defence, English is my third language" she giggles. "Naked rust removal? Wow. You really should have gone with the stainless steel. Could you get chromed? Maybe that would help." She has no idea what she is talking about but that has never stopped her before.

Sydney hugs Sierra tight again. "No, like your girlfriend, you've given me wisdom where I didn't expect it." She shakes her head a little. "The guy in question is dead. Has been for a while, I guess. Probably a good thing, because I used to fantasize about tearing his arms off and watching him die." She chuckles. "Stainless steel'd be a problem. I get my energy from oxidizing steel. It's a lot more like rusting it than burning it. I don't know if Dr. Wolf got better metals with later versions or anything. They won't tell me much about El Muerto, who was Dr. Wolf's second project. Dude's in power prison at Leavenworth, or so I hear. Wolf would be over a hundred if he were still alive.

"Hey, I'm wise" Sierra pouts as they hug again. "I'm seventeen…seen and done it all." She may be slightly delusional…or a teenager. "El Meurto? The supervillain? You knew him?" Being Mexican, and interested in this kind of thing before she became powered, Sierra knows all about the creep that was El Muerto. "That fucker worked for the drug lords, right? He shouldn't be in prison, he should be dead. He was an insult to my country." Her anger abates enough to shrug about Wolf. "My companion inside is much older than that. This Wolf may still be alive…just hidden. If this El Meurto damaged you then I hate him even more."

Sydney shakes her head. "No, no no. I never even met El Muerto. He's just a later version of what I am. Built by the same guy a few years later. And yeah. Drug lords, is what I hear. That's all I know about him, really. Life without parole in Leavenworth. Oh, there was one thing. When they went through his things, they found the owner's manual for this." She taps on her chest, making it clunk like a shovel hitting rock. "On floppy disks. From the pictures I saw, they were the originals. They sent me digital copies of them."

"An owner's manual? Hey…no one owns you" Sierra scowls. "How about we think up of a new name? Like 'Instruction Manual'. You're not a machine. You're a human. Like Saoirse is human too, and you will always both be human." A curious look at the chest tapping. "You do feel that, right? So El Meurto robbed Wolf too…and knows a lot about you. Just as well he is locked up then."

Sydney chuckles. "Yeah, I'm getting over the whole 'they owned me' thing. Slowly. I meant owner's manual for your new steel body. And what I was told by the cops was that they're pretty sure Wolf was working for the Narcos when he made El Muerto. They don't know who the guy was beforehand and he's not telling." She nods. "But yeah. I'm human. Every one of my cells still has the DNA I was born with, it just has cybernetic parts and steel bonded to it." She follows Sierra's eyes, and smiles a quirky, half-mouthed smile. "Gimme your hand. I'll show you something cool."

"Good…you are yourself and that is the only person who can tell you what to do…did that make sense?" Sierra asks before one eyebrow rises at the request for her hand. "If this is something that could get me in trouble with Saoirse, we will stop being friends" she playfully warns before offering over her hand. "You'd think we could get El Muerto to talk. Maybe we should try?"

Sydney says, "Maybe. I could beat him, and you could heat him up to welding temperatures. Didn't seem real practical." She pulls her shirt up exposing her belly, and presses Sierra's hand against her metal stomach very slowly. Where it sinks in. Unless Sierra pulls back or something, Syd will gently push the hand all the way out the back. Sierra might feel things like organs nearby, certainly a pulse, but everything inside feels pretty much like Syd's outsides, just more slippery. Until the hand is out the air in back, at least."

Sierra is not the type to pull away from 'icky' situations. She has a mummified head in her room after all. But this is quite the surprise. Her hand pushing all the way /through/ her friend. "How?" Her eyes wide with amazement. "I thought you were all steel hard and stuff? Are you doing this on purpose, because if you aren't, this could be quite a flaw to your powers." A roll of her eyes. "Please don't say to Saoirse that I had my hand in you. Okay?"

Sydney nods. "This is what I am. I'm a non-Newtonian fluid made up of a protein grease, living cells and their cybernetic attachments. I'm made of the same stuff everywhere, really. So that's my stomach… and part of my brain, and if we were fighting, I could swap it with my hand and have my hand around your wrist." She chuckles at the 'hand in you' comment and blushes vaguely straw colored. "Yeah that does sound bad." She lets go of Sierra's hand. Assuming Sierra pulls it back, Syd's belly follows it out and resumes its normal shape. "Now slap it. Don't have to make me sting or break your fingers.

Sierra listens, vaguely understanding, as she pulls her arm and hand free of her friend. "You know what else is a non-Newtonian fluid? Custard." She does listen in science class! "Slap it? Why do I think you won't be soft anymore" Sierra smirks before doing as requested…not too hard but with some power behind it. "Wait…I had my hand in your brain? Why do I feel queasy?"

Sydney 's belly feels remarkably steel-like when hit rapidly. "Like custard. Yes exactly. Mythbusters did a lot with non-Newtonian fluids too. But I have an added wrinkle in that I can squeeze the particles closer together. Make them harder at will. That's how I can make my chest ring like that. And yeah… all my insides are distributed. So brain, intestine, you name it. You touched all that hugging me too. I have some of me pretending to be skin, some of me pretending to be eyes, well enough that they work. Some of me pretending to be fingernails and hair and…" she gestures toward her chest. "boobs." Truth be told, though, your nerves are really part of your brain too, more or less.

"Interesting" Sierra decides that is the word to describe all this information. "How much of that is conscious though? I mean, what is the default? Rock hard or squishy? I'd hate for you to have to think yourself hard if someone is about to punch you. What if they sneak up? Maybe you can figure out a way to color yourself as well?"

Sydney nods. "I'm working on the color part. I mean my hair is that. It's more of the same stuff. And no, when you slapped my belly I hadn't changed its tension. Just the extra energy pushed the particles together. You provided the energy." She thinks about it. "The default… well, when I'm unconscious, and most of the time when I'm sleeping, I'm pretty much a puddle of metal custard. Keep me from flowing into the ocean or down a drain, because I have to breathe. Now the weird thing is, I've fallen asleep…once… solid.

"Sounds like you need to be pretty alert at all times then. People could do some nasty things to a puddle of metal" Sierra frowns. "Mabel was a puddle too. Hated the ocean because she might dissipate into it and never come back. She used to sleep in a container." A little blush. "When she wasn't sleeping somewhere else. But you can breathe through any part of your body. If it's all the same and all everything."

Sydney nods. "I can, yeah. It just… gives me the serious willies if I hold a non-human form very long. And water's not dense enough to dissolve me. I'd just drown. Anyway… I showed you because… you seemed to wonder why my chest rings like that. The answer is that I cheat."

"We're at school, we're meant to cheat" Sierra winks. "You're you and that's all that matters" she adds with a smile. "Hey…you interested in some ice cream? I have an…urge. Is that the right word? Craving?"

Sydney chuckles. "Craving is the right word but be careful throwing it around. Craving ice cream and like pickles can mean you're pregnant. And then Sao'd have a lot of explaining to do."

Sydney says, "Ice cream would be great. Double if they have like sugar free frozen yogurt or something. Sugar makes me sticky."

"We could go into town and get some frozen yogurt" Sierra suggests. "We're allowed to leave the school on the weekend. Or sneak out at any time. It is the weekend, isn't it?" A little giggle about being pregnant. "One of the good things about being a lesbian, is that it is unlikely either of us will get pregnant. If it happened, I'd like to hear the explanation too."

Sydney chuckles. "With nanotech, anything is possible," Syd teases. "Lemme get my purse." She jogs indoors briefly and returns with it a few minutes later, a battered messenger bag slung over her shoulder. "Yeah, don't even get me started on hand-held purses. Can't stand 'em."

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