2020-02-09 - Showing Promise


Gwen and Emma meet perchance at the University, and have a chat.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sun Feb 9 08:54:13 2020
Location: New York State University

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The weather is cool, low thirties, a bit chilly but not sub-freezing at least. Emma Frost is actually present at the university that Gwen is attending, and emerges from the headmaster's office with a fairly irritated look on her patrician features. She pauses a moment, to straighten her coat, and gather her calm. Eyes of blue slowly looking less irritated, and then fairly pleasant.

Moving over to a stand selling hot drinks, and orders herself a rther tall espresso, because Caffeine makes /everything/ better.

'I wish I could still drink cofee' is the thought that hovers at the surface of Gwen Stacy's mind; she's at a different stand, getting herself a hotdog — not one of those cheap ones, though she certainly eats those. This is a proper gourmet hot dog, in a quality bun, and loaded up with mustard, relish, onions, jalapenos, and cheese. All the good stuff.

Is that someone she recognizes? It's been a while, but she did meet someone who looked surprisingly like that lady at one of MJ's parties, that one for the release of a movie she starred in. Yeah… that was it. Right? Right.

You're staring, Gwen.

Espresso in hand, Emma turns and just /happens/ to see Gwen. A moment as blue blue eyes narrow, and then she nods, recognizing the girl. After a moment she moves over, not /quite/ a strut, but something more than an amble. It is pure coincidence that they recognized each other at nearly the exact same moment, of course.

Pure coincidence.

"Hello again." She offers her non-coffeed hand. "Emma Frost, I believe you said you were…Gwanda?"

"Err… Gwen, actually." Gwen takes the offered hand for an unexpectedly firm handshake, given her stature. "Sorry, I didn't mean to stare, I was just working out which part I recognized you from." She tilts her head, furrowing her brow for a moment. "Are you a professor here? If you don't mind my asking, that is."

Unfortunately, the laws of thermodynamics don't give it a rest just because you're talking to someone, so Gwen bites off a big piece of hot dog while it's still hot. And, at that rate, she's going to finish it in four bites. Piggy.

"Oh, quite alright, Gwen." Emma is a little surprised by the strength housed in that grip - still, she lives with a pair of shapeshifters, and has been training mutants a long time. Her smile doesn't slip a bit, and she lets the girl reclaim her hand and also makes no comment about her eating speed. Clearly, she is hungry.

"Actually, no, not a professor, at least not here and now." Her smile brightens a bit. "Though I don't mind mentioning the school I'm in process of building with some partnership." A nod. "It will be something." She says with eyes alight with anticipation and more than a little hope and wonder.

Emma's a pretty woman, but that light in her eyes? Usually cold eyes? Yeah, striking as hell.

Gwen is already half way through her hotdog by the time Emma has said that much. Girl can eat, apparently. "Sorry. Don't mind me, I wasn't expecting to be in conversation, and hot dogs are only any good when they're, y'know, hot cold. Kind of… implied by the name, I think."

She catches Emma's gaze, and those cold eyes. Is she phased? Intimidated? No, not really, there's just a passing thought of 'hunh, unusual eyes' across the top of her brain. 'Wonder if that's contact lenses?'

Making your own school, though, hunh?" Gwen's expression brights considerably at that. "That's really cool. I'm always in support of efforts made to make education more accessible. I hope it's going well for you?"

A wry twist of expressive lips, a sort of Natalie Dormer smirk. "They're HOT dogs, not /cold/ dogs, I actually get it." Emma waits the few moments it takes for Gwen to finish her dog, her own hands cupped around the paper cup with her tall espresso, delicate little sips taken as she waits with grace worthy of her middle name.

"Oh, my partners and I have been working on it for some time, there's a considerable amount of paperwork and red-tape involved, one can't just say 'Oh, here you go, new school'." An amused little laugh. "One does not simply /walk/ into Mordor, as it were."

Emma if anything looks even more pleased by Gwen's reaction to it. "It is going quite well, construction well underway. And accessible, yes, that's EXACTLY the focus. It is meant to be a place that is -inclusive- as the default, not overpriced and EXclusive."

"Well, I mean…" Gwen shrugs, as she finishes off the hot dog, and gives her lips a quick lick to make sure she isn't sporting a mustard mustache or anything. (She isn't.) "I seem to recall from the books that they literally did walk into Mordor, but there really wasn't anything simple about it. I subscribe to the theory that Gandalf was telling them to go see the Eagles when he said 'Fly, you fools' before falling off the bridge at Khadad-Dum, just that none of them worked it out."

The young blond grins, "Awesome. I hate those rich schools that are just for the rich kids. I'm not saying I've ever tossed a carton of eggs or two at some of their cars, but it hasn't made me sad when I've heard about it." (She was totally involved but her Dad can never know.)

"So what kind of school are you making? Inclusive is awesome. Do you have a specific focus on underprivelidged groups, like the LGBT community or racial communities?"

A faint shake of her head, nope, no mustard spots. "Well, yes, but it was not a simple undertaking." That smirk grows broader at the spin she puts on Gandalf's falling exhortation, and even laughs very softly. "Oh, wouldn't that have been grand? Shorter books though, I believe I saw a How it Should Have Ended like that - quite amusing." Oh man, Emma watches HISHE? That's kind of cool.

"Oh, the prices will seem normal, but there's a lot of ways to subsidize things so they're not nearly as bad as at first blush, believe it or not /lower/ rates actually lower enrollments. It makes little sense, but it is true. Regardless, there will be plenty of grants and financial assistance that is readily available, it will be in reach of anyone who cares to put in the effort."

Emma might have engaged in a few shenanigans, even a hijink or two! And no, Pere Stacy will never hear about the eggs from Emma.

"It is a school offering training not only in the usual subjects, but also for the use of powers. Metahumans, mutants, mutates, if they're LGBT that's fine too, Horizon Academy is going to stand for diversity and inclusion, not fear and loathing. Period."

Outwardly, it's all Gwen can do to keep from immediately popping a couple of thumbs up. Inwardly, she's thinking 'dang, I sure could'a used that seven months ago'.

What Gwen does not realize is, it sure is hard to keep a secret identity aroun someone who can read surface thoughts. Especially when you have no idea you should be keeping a lid on said thoughts.

"That's awesome," she says after a moment to chew it over. "I know there's people out there who could seriously benefit from that. On more than one front. I've never been the popular girl," that's the truth, "But I've got no idea what it's like to be ostracized for being that sort of different," that's less true. "I imagine it's really tough when someone first gets their abilities, too." Don't have to imagine, actually.

Emma /is/ keeping a light trace on the area, mostly looking for hostile intent from those around them, but stronger emotions and thoughts will also be heard too. Such as that one! This does make her check - nope, not a mutant, still, a meta of some sort, that much seems implicit.

She rather likes Gwen, her mind is rather a fresh breeze in a murky world, so she doesn't press deeper. If she comes to trust Emma, well, that's fine, but she has no reason to delve deeper.

It is perhaps a sign of ethical growth, who can say? Emma surely WOULD have scanned deeper in the past.

This is not that Emma.

"Popular girls are almost always snooty little bitches who need to be taught some manners." Emma states, and she says so with the complete knowledge she was just such a bitch at times. "In truth people really just have no idea how hard it is to be different, how /difficult/ it is for an individual with powers they don't understand when they first manifest. It is also very VERY dangerous, not just for them, but for those around them. The learning curve can be very steep and is seldom forgiving, in my experience."

Her assurance on that is irrefutable - now - Gwen MIGHT take that as Emma herself has powers, but she might also think it means she knows people with them, it could go either way.

The thought that Emma might either have powers or now people with them certainly does cross Gwen's mind — but not before something about almost smashing an apartment to smithereens and something about getting stuck on the wrong side of the outer wall of said apartment make their own pass through her brain. Fortunately, if rather… un-informatively, that thought doesn't stick around.

"Eh, I've never been desperate to be one of those popular girls anyway," she replies. "Give me some noise-cancelling headphones and a good album, or just give me my drums, and I'm pretty much in my happy place with no audience required." She pauses, and bobs her head. "Yeah, I've… heard that before," she adds, "I mean, I can't imagine how awkward it would be to wake up and suddenly find you can make fire or teleport or read minds and have no idea how to even turn it on or off. …And I guess that's not counting people who have stuff that doesn't… turn off, I mean… that might be awkward too, I guess." She scratches the back of her head lightly. "Though I'm glad most people with abilities can at least defend themselves, yeah? Lots of people in history haven't even had that."

The images that flit through Gwen's mind are definitely strong enough to 'ping', and now Emma is even more curious, does Gwen fly? Super leap? The feeling was one of moving through the air, but also a sort of burning stretchy feeling in the arms…swing from a line or brachiate? Swing from a line seems pretty likely. Add to that getting stuck to a wall…she has an inkling she's speaking to one of the various spider themed metas in town, which is very interesting.

"It really isn't worth the spite and venom, trust me, I was a right bitch in finishing school." Emma says with simple earnestness, and then she laughs. "In truth I can be a right bitch today too." She puts on her 'business face' for a moment, and yeah, just a little intimidating that diamondine gaze and shark-like smile, creepy. And then it washes away again, and she's a LOT more pleasant. "Exactly, imagine waking up one day with the proportionate strength of a beetle, ant or even a spider. Crushed glasses, broken sinks, who knows? a slammed door would likely crack and deform the frame. And yes, I am sure 'always on' powers, especially things like Empahty or Telepathy are hell."

A shake of her head. "Actually, at least in the case of mutants, the vast majority of those with powers have things of -very- limited focus, and some end up with 'gifts' that are more of a curse. Useful powers, combat useful powers especially are pretty rare."

You really should be more careful about your surface thoughts, Gwen.

But then, who could blame her? It's not like she's got experience talking to telepaths. Not that she's aware of, anyway, otherwise she might spend her time thinking about eating a lollipop or something. As it is, there's a definite 'Heh' at the mention of 'spider' that flashes through her brain, just for an instant.

"See, I could never pull off that sort of look," she replies, placid in the face of fierce intimidation. Either she's full of the confidence that super-strength affords, or she sees no reason to be worried when her danger sense isn't screaming in her brain. "Angry isn't… really my thing. I'm more the quiet, keep to myself type, most of the time." Well, except for when fighting crooks, terrorists, werewolves, and extra-dimensional vampires. "I actually didn't know that about mutants. I'm studying biochemistry, but I don't think any of my classes are set to talk about that subject until at least the second year. Apparently it's considered too difficult for first years." She pauses, and snorts, "I'm confident I could handle it."

Yes, indeed; she's very confident, and feels justified in that confidence, too.

She should definitely be more careful. Thankfully, Telepaths aren't really all that common!

Emma doesn't blame her, though she's really sort of wishing she could teach her. There's tricks one could employ, it isn't the same as actual shielding, but effective in a lot of cases where shields might be too much. Emma uses both shields and the others regularly.

"In time perhaps, but now? Probably not, you're too…" She waves a hand. "…Gwen." A bright laugh, eyes sparkling almost literally. "And by Gwen I mean you seem to be very WYSIWYG…" Said 'Wizzie-Wig'. "…What You See Is What You Get."

Emma nods then. "Oh yes, I have no doubt that you'd manage to overcome any obstacles in your chosen path." Emma takes a small wallet from an only slightly larger purse, and then offers Gwen her card. "The Academy is already well underway, if you'd like to swing by sometime and check it out, let me know. I think you have promise, Miss Stacy. I fully intend to see if I cannot entice you over to my school, you know. It is inclusive, powered and non-powered individuals need to learn to live -together-."

Gwen perks an eyebrow upwards, clearly curious about what is about to come out of the wallet, until it's… well, a business card. Alright, that makes sense.

"Thank you," she replies, taking the card and tucking it away in her own wallet — no purse for this girl, she just keeps a rather thin wallet in her pocket. Must have all her money on debit or something; doesn't look like she carries much beyond a couple of cards in that thing, judging by the size of it.

"I'm more than enough nerd to know WYSIWYG," she adds, quirking her lips upwards at the corners. Sounds (and the brain confirms) that someone has played Warhammer at least once. "I'm not really desperate to get good at intimidating people with my face anyway, mind you. I don't deny that it has its uses, but.. I dunno, I could always just threaten to drum them into oblivion." Or punch them to the moon. Would that be considered gauche?

"I can guarantee you that I will swing by," she adds. "I intend to finish out the year here — partly 'cause I've already paid tuition and it's not refundable, I'll grant that much — but hey, next school year is always a possibility."

Emma is almost always fashionable, usually in clothing and accoutrements that cost more than a lot of people earn in a year! Definitely a small purse, very vogue.

"Of course, as I said, you show promise, Miss Stacy." She inclines her head, and then glances at a nearby clock tower, thankfully one sans sniper, and sighs very faintly. "Well, I must apologize, but there's a meeting I /have/ to attend. Pray forgive me, still, needs must." A helpless shrug.

Definitely would be gauche to lunar punch someone, no question, it is very much frowned upon if you've read your Miss Manners. Emma's smile is fairly gleeful. "Oh, honey, you need to learn to use /every/ weapon in your arsenal, the face is one of the best ways I know to win before the fight even starts, and you've got more than enough looks for it."

With that she offers an encouraging wink, and then she heads off towards a parked car - sheesh, a Rolls with a Chauffer.

It might not occur to Gwen until later, but…she never did give Emma her last name…

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