Priority ChangesStarted by Remy LeBeau at Apr 09, 2020 6:01 AM
November 30, 2023
"If I've learned anythin' about life it's this:
Always play the hand yer dealt.
My name is Gambit. And I play for keeps."
Gambit flicked a partly gloved thumb over the back of the cards, the deck now fanning out in his hand. Without looking up at her, he said, “Ever the efficient one, Mon Cheri. Yo’ be havin’ any trouble?” he asked, red-on-black eyes briefly scanning for where Sophie was. Once he was satisfied she was merely playing near one of the many trees in the park still very close by, he focused his attention back on Betsy.
It didn’t matter how long it had been, for now, seeing the woman he viewed as a trusted friend and fellow master thief seemed to bring back the memory of being dusted every time. The Cajun shook the recollections of that day and the feelings that went along with them away, returning the cards to his jacket pocket and sitting up a bit straighter. “Things be changin’ again, Cher,” was all he said, referring to how he had taken it upon himself to be a little Cajun girl’s sole guardian.
"Nothing I can't take care of myself." Betsy was always someone who could be trusted to solve her own problems. Ever the go-getter, she had a way to find a solution to any problem and that was what made of her a great asset in a chain of command. She also looked Sophie's way and the strange presence was now in her vicinity, but still not showing a dangerous behavior. Another girl joined her to which Betsy opened a small smile. Then she sensed a familiar feral mind nearby. She knew Agent Fireheart not to be a violent feral, but if he was there they should be extra careful. *Remy, S.H.I.E.L.D. agent nearby. He doesn't seem to be here on our account though.* She let him know immediately.
"How so?" She knew Remy was getting attached to Sophie more than usual due to the many similarities between them, but it would never cross her mind that he was actually thinking about officially adopting the little Cajun girl unless she read his, which she wasn't inclined to do due to their mutual trust and friendship. As a telepath, Betsy had sensed, on occasion, that Remy was looking for a more grounded life, but it always seemed to be a transitory state of mind before.
His alert levels picking up at the mention of a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent in their vicinity, Remy again looked for and located Sophie, this time another little one now with her, as so often happened with kids and their need to so very easily get to know each other without the least bit of bias. Thus far, there was no need to ruin her play by his sometimes overprotective parenting… hah! That was a laugh, the Cajun smirking to himself. “Dat little girl of there be Gambit's, Cher. At least, I be makin’ it dat way at some point very soon,” he then looked at her more seriously. “Yo’ know there are too many enemies in the Guild lookin’ to end Gambit’s life, and more so since comin’ back in the Blip. I be startin’ to think this be the right time to pass on the mantle to someone else permanently.”
That might come as a surprise to Elizabeth, or perhaps not. Still, it was a heavy thing to actually say out loud and Remy had to admit he felt a deep sense of relief for not only revealing it to his most trusted but, also, to himself.
Betsy couldn't help but raise her eyebrows at his statements. Passing on the mantle? Was he serious or was that one of those moments of his? She hoped he wasn't thinking about her as a successor. She had taken over for him while he stayed vanished, but she had to confess she didn't want it back. Betsy herself was reassessing her life as well and if Remy's change of heart about staying with the Guild was genuine this time, she would consider following her own way again.
"Maybe now that they are under other leadership, we might negotiate a truce. Bella Donna is no stranger to you. Don't you think it might be possible upon our return?" Betsy had been considering this since she heard about the passing of Belladonna's father, which would naturally pass the command of the Assassin's Guild to his daughter, who she knew wouldn't have any problems reigning over her followers and might be willing to call off all those prices on their heads.
She had a point. A very good one, Gambit falling into a deep sense of thought for a moment. “If’n dis be achievable, Gambit be free to do as he pleases again.” He had a feeling Psylocke would have a hard time truly believing what he was saying. He had referenced it a few times before the Decimation and yet nothing had ever come of it. Guess he’d enjoyed being a thief and a leader too much back then. Since coming back and being given a second chance to do possibly do something better, that blasé mention was now becoming a far deeper and more inherent one.
“The enfant be a good enough reason to be lookin’ into it, non?” he said, leaning forward and settling his gaze on Sophie once again. This time he actually caught sight of a little blue flash moving in and around the two little girls, sitting up stock straight suddenly and just staring.
"So it's a go? I can arrange the meeting upon our arrival." Gambit knew what she meant by that. She would contact Belladonna telepathically with their request for a meeting without actually needing to enter the rival Guild's HQ. This way no one was put into danger. "Yes, she would be." Betsy then noticed the change in Remy's body language. "The blue being isn't dangerous. Don't worry." She added to relax him.
Remy shook his head. “Oh, Gambit knows that,” he said, words trailing off, still lost in the memory of him as a boy on the streets, cold and shivering one evening when a little fairy-like creature came out of nowhere to cheer him up. Even though the tiny thing, who had introduced herself as Amp, had assured him she was very much real, he really thought he’d been dreaming. “Can’t be,” and the Cajun got up without a word, heading towards them, all thought of a truce between the Guilds now temporarily forgotten.
Betsy sensed a change in thought pattern in Remy as he spoke to confirm her previous words. The sense of familiarity between him and the blue being was so strong it was impossible for her not to pick it up. "Remy, are you alright?" He seemed to be in a trance as he walked towards where the children were playing with Amp. She followed him just a few steps behind, ready to help him break free if he seemed unable to do so by himself.
Hearing Betsy’s concern, Remy glanced back over his shoulder. “Oui, Cher. Jus’ be seein’ a blast from my younger past. Somethin’ I never thought to be real,” he told her.
It didn’t take long for Gambit to be able to stop just shy of where Sophie was standing. He put his hand on the little girl’s shoulder to let her know he was there. Unfortunately, actually saying anything more, especially to Amp, was pushed very quickly aside when the Cajun spotted the half feline form close by to their position. Exactly how long had he been there for? Fellow mutant or not, Remy’s instincts to protect Sophie, Amp, and the other little one he was yet to formally meet kicked in. “Answer de question, Mon’amie,” he said to the unknown, an edge clear in his tone.
Remy's words matched what Betsy was sensing from him, so she just kept following him until they reached the place by the trees where the children were. Looking at the source of the contention, she instantly recognized Puma from her S.H.I.E.L.D. days. "He is Agent Thomas Fireheart, S.H.I.E.L.D. We've served together before. He won't be dangerous if you don't make him be, Remy." She warned Gambit after answering the question that was hanging in the air.
Tags: Puma, Rogue, Crystal, Amp and Sophie.
Sometimes the best way to deal with people is to give 'em a taste of their own medicine.
Rogue gave a little chuckle as she was promptly left behind by a very excited Crystal. She didn’t mind though; it was something she hoped for. A playground wasn’t a place where a kid should be calm and reserved. It was where they should have imagined adventure and be brave in their attempt to make new friends, even if the friendship only lasted for what time they remained here. She put her now empty hand, the one that had been holding Crystal’s, in her coat pocket as she continued to stroll her way to the playground.
She had just visually selected the bench she was going to sit at when she heard Crystal call her over. In the young girl’s excitement, she had turned away from Rogue’s direction halfway through sharing her discovery. Which left the southerner in the dark about what the new explorer had found. Rogue wasn’t too concerned about not hearing everything, she was simply pleased that Crystal had found another child to explore with. That was the important thing. Rogue was just going to keep her space to allow her young charge to enjoy some independence that her mother might not be so ok with. In Rogue’s mind that is why you had aunt’s in the first place, to cross the boundaries that protective parents had difficulties with.
Moving to the park bench Rogue took a seat, gasping slightly as she felt the compressed cold of the morning bench seep through her pants. Biting at the body warmth she worked hard to maintain. She was lifting her cinnamon latte up to take a sip, and regain some of her warmth, when she noticed an adult near the girls. She paused for a moment, but seeing the man was keeping a safe distance from the girls, Rogue didn’t sense the need to intervene just yet. She knew exactly how long it would take for her to close the gap between them. She had confidence in her training and her abilities to maintain Crystal’s safety. So she took a sip from her cup, keeping a watchful eye.
“Seriously,” she sighed as a couple got up from another bench and joined the girls. She assumed the couple were the other girl’s parents, but now there were just too many people around her new charge for Rogue to feel comfortable with maintaining her distance. So she got up from her seat and moved towards the growing crowd. Sometimes, it was the adults who had a reputation for spoiling a day at the playground. She hoped that wasn’t the case today, her southern temper wouldn’t handle Crystal having a poor experience of her first trip to the big city.
When she was about 15 steps away from everyone else, she paused. “Crystal, darli’n, let’s have you play’n closer ta’ the playground for a while,” her voice friendly and light as she tried to casually steer Crystal back towards safer grounds. If any of the adults looked her way she’d give them a friendly smile and a “Good Morn’n.”
Tags: Puma, Amp, Crystal, Sophie, Remy, Betsy.
It had been in another New York park just over a fortnight ago when Thomas Fireheart had previously found trouble, though it was an incident he would rather have forgotten. Still the first time that he ventured into a park he found that he'd attracted trouble again or rather that in this case he was causing trouble. This time he was the feral mutant whom was causing alarm and consternation, potentially frightening innocent children and their parents or carers and through the simple reason that he'd allowed himself to get distracted. Even if he'd never expected that he'd see something quite so wondrous as a real life fairy that was no excuse.
By the time the fairy if that's what she really was actually spoke, Thomas was snapped out of his reverie as he realised he wasn't actually seeing things. However by that point it was too late as he realised that she wasn't alone and that there were the two little girls very near to her, that he was far too close for their comfort and if they'd gotten a glimpse of his appearance then at the very least he might have frightened them. If it had just been the fairy, he could have just given them his name and apologised and walked away as quickly as he could.
Unfortunately a scent he recognised was there, Elizabeth Braddock and some company, a rather raffish if exceptionally handsome man with a sort of Jack Sparrow vibe or maybe sleazy Cajun grifter, though definitely not the sort that he'd likely have gotten along with even if he wasn't being addressed in a distinctly threatening tone and one which made him instinctually want to snarl, though he repressed the urge. Fortunate that Elizabeth was there and hopefully her friend would listen to her advice.
"Who am I? Thomas Fireheart, out for a walk to clear my head and then I saw you, a Mialuka. Damned fool that I am, I had to stop and do a double take, should have just walked on and now what have I done? Frightened children, scared their parents, never even should have been shifted but not that that would have made any difference. First time I've been in a park in a fortnight and last time, a jackass of a werewolf calling himself Maximus Lobo whom I had to reprimand and now.....I'm the menace ruining everyone's day," Thomas had clenched his hands tightly into fists, the pain of claws digging into his palms providing enough focus to keep his voice steady and refrain from growling.
Finally he shook his head and looked up from where he'd been gazing down at his boots.
"It's...well good to see you again Elizabeth, thought it was you I sensed earlier. Good to see you're doing well these days," Thomas managed a calmer, friendlier tone as he addressed her. Then he looked across at the Cajun accented man, the one addressed by her as Remy.
"No doubt you consider me a threat to the children, understandable then you'd take that tone with me. So, I let it pass though any other time, she would be right. I can be quite dangerous if you make me be. Now though, if I'm perhaps on my way we won't ever have to see each other again and I'm sorry for scaring your daughter."
Thomas began to turn away, just catching sight of Rogue, "Sorry as well, if I scared any of your children."
The werecat sighed, "Damn it all, I'm worse than Lobo. Not some dumb mutt whom doesn't know any better. Maybe I better avoid parks altogether from now on."
"Mama's girl, Uncle's favorite Niece,Grandma's angel! And the Youngest Motorcycle Rider"
Crystal smiled as Amp greeted her, and she allowed the required morning hugs from her friend before her attention went to Sophie. She took note she appeared to be a normal girl, and knowing the rarity that mutation can happen to kids as young as she had been, she was worried that Sophie was a human and a possible bad one. Still, Crystal is a sweet girl and she was polite too “Hiya I’m Crystal! Amp is one of my best friends,” she told her before her attention went to the other adults who soon joined them. Unfortunately, she didn’t recognize them.
Thomas did scare her a little despite her body being made of metal, she thought it would be possible to be harmed. Though Rogue calling to her did distract her and reminded her that she was there to play on the playground. A new idea that she could bring Sophie and Amp along pleased her since Sophie was a kid like her. Thomas seemed sad that he scared them though, so he couldn’t be that bad. “Let’s go play on the side, ok Sophie, Amp?’ she asked them both, though Amp certainly was too small to swing, and slide, she was certain Amp can be in their pocket or something as it happened.
With that, she gently grabbed Sophie’s hand, while she set up a spot for Amp before she’d led the way back.