Let Us Work Together - Part 1

OOC - Joint Post between Esimed, GrayGladiator & Blitzen)

Part of Theo’s delay in returning to the front door to let her cousin inside was not her fault. She had not known the pair of them were outside on the stoop waiting to be let in. She couldn’t see why the house would want to exclude Niko when they were clearly a package deal and the house had no reason to dislike the Prince. The delay had given Birdy an opportunity to put an extra layer of fabulous to Theo’s hair. To be fair, all he did was brush it and pop her collar, but she felt that was the fabulous touch.

The Sanctum Sanctorum had an ominous sound to it; the name, not the house itself. The house was being decidedly quiet. BD Wong had done good work during the day making the downstairs sitting room cozy and clean. The Maximoffs weren’t slobs and were used to cleaning up after themselves, but the house came fully furnished with timeless dust and everything. These weren’t there belongings, it wasn’t their mess. And Niko was afraid to touch most of it for fear of being magicked. They hadn’t signed any papers so from a legal standpoint it was unclear whether they were owners, squatters or guests. Theo and the house instantly latched onto one another so the legal standpoint hadn’t really seemed so important, but there would come a time when all their affairs needed to be in order. That time was probably now, before they jumped head first into recruiting a superhero team. Theo could think of two people in New York at this very moment who had the resources and knowhow to tie all their legal affairs up in a secure bundle; Pepper Stark & Prince T’Chantem.

“Birdy will bring us tea, but I asked him to hold off until we’ve had a few minutes to talk among ourselves. Please pick a spot to sit and make yourself comfortable.” Theo looked around at the chairs and lounges in the room then collapsed on the floor by the coffee table to sit cross legged, thankful that she’d worn pants and not the skirt Birdy laid out for her. She and BD were still getting tuned to one another, but he’d learn quick enough that she rarely wore skirts, she didn’t like the way they made everything breezy ‘down there.’

Niko returned downstairs having quickly changed into track pants and a tight shirt, a brand new pair of sneakers on his feet. He took a seat closest to Theo where he could watch the rest of the room. Niko already had some respect for the Prince and what he could do. He, too, was thankful that Theo’d worn pants.

“Prince T’Chantem, I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve chosen to wear pants on this auspicious occasion. I hope that’s not going to be a problem; I’m really not very familiar with Wakanda politics or social norms where dresscode are concerned. Niko raised his eyes to the ceiling as she glanced over at his track pants and t-shirt.

“As for why we’re here, I’ll get to the point,” Theo continued. “Niko and I have been training from a young age to fight a threat which we know to be present. Well, we aren’t certain it’s present, it may be future, but it could be out there and there are plenty of other threats just as real but on a less grand scale. As you know, it’s been fifteen years since the Poof and I’ve had this notion since I was thirteen; a vision of a team where we’d stand ready if another threat presented itself. I have another dream as well, but that involves Mindingo Montoya and Terry Crews, and Niko told me that wasn’t something to be mentioned in mixed company.”

“The Prince has people waiting in the car--” Niko prompted, hoping to curtail her story which he was sure would not be suited for any company let alone mixed. Theo, with her eyes closed left a pause long enough to be uncomfortable, so Niko cleared his throat.

“Hmm? Oh, yes. Right.” She cooed, returning from where she’d momentarily been to the present. “We’d like to invite the children of the Enhanced, such as yourself to train with the Maximoffs, to assemble a team to stand ready against what’s coming. But efforts like that would take funding. Niko and I do have some funds available and we plan to see Ms. Stark about that, but in the meantime, we’d need your help, both in participation and in funding. Birdy has needs and Churros aren’t cheap.”

Theo picked at the edge of the low coffee table with her nails as she chewed her lip. “I know there’s a logical question, a pertinent piece of the puzzle that everyone is going to ask. I refused to answer Bailey Bishop because she wanted to use the information against us, not in support of our cause. I’m going to tell you because we’re asking something from you, but you also have a right to know. You lost both of your parents fifteen years ago as did I. I’m still trying to piece it all together and probably will never know exactly what happened, but I’ll tell you what I know, and speculate on the rest. But first, I want to offer you an apology since it was my mother who killed your parents. She killed them all.”

Niko gave her a look as if to say, This is not what we discussed! He sighed and tensed, ready to jump in as he often did if Theo’s explanations started to go off the rails. He flicked his eyes between the stoic crown prince and his decidedly not stoic cousin as she continued.

“Not in combat or anything. She didn’t turn against them or strike them down. She was doing what she thought was right; I’m not sure she knew what the exact results would be. The threat that Niko and I refer to, we know it’s authentic because we’ve seen it. Well, I’ve seen it and Niko knows I wouldn’t lie about that. For that threat to make sense though, you need to know what my mother did. Mind, she didn’t do it all by herself but it was her magic. Not everyone agreed with her, but they were committed to the act by the time she did it.”

“Miskja Brat, maybe now is not the time to be cryptic.” He worried about the selective information she was choosing to divulge. The information that made everything seem like it was his Aunt Wanda’s doing, the kind that may make people wary of his cousin. “Start at beginning and tell the story in order it happened.”

The Maximoffs never failed to prove that they were quite the peculiar pair, and prolonged silences or not, T'Chantem couldn't help but feel uncomfortable in the overwhelming presence of them both. "Perhaps you would like this back first," T'Chantem offered before reaching into his coat pocket and producing Niko's abandoned tie. He hadn't even bothered to remove his coat, especially after Theodosia began her proposal and explanation of her aforementioned grand plan, and instead set Niko's tie, which he had taken the time to neatly fold, on the table before them. He wasn't sure how to respond to Theo's apology, but he was appreciative of her efforts nonetheless. "I'm sorry for your loss," was the response he decided to settle on, not only was it the most appropriate thing he could think of in the moment, but it also kept him from becoming overly emotional.

“I applaud your good nature and heroic heart, Theodosia, but what exactly are you asking me to fund?” he questioned. He knew that to assemble a team made of new heroes, money would be deeply involved, money was rooted behind everything in the world, but there hadn’t been heroes for fifteen years, and he wasn’t sure he understood what Theo was truly envisioning. “I completely understand your desire to create a team for impending threats, but what about other responsibilities? I have a home to return to, and I’d do anything to protect it and the people there, and if your team is a part of that, I take no issue in aiding you, but you do understand how vague everything sounds to someone who doesn’t share your knowledge, correct?” he asked. He had realized that Theo was trying to share the information she knew, but T’Chantem couldn’t help but feel that a few details had been brushed over to instead focus on the main point and bigger picture; create a superhuman team that would be funded by him. However, what T’Chantem didn’t understand was how Theo’s plan would actually come to fruition. He could pour as much money as he wanted into fundings and bank accounts, but it would all be worthless if they didn’t have a cohesive plan that they all agreed on.

Theo looked to Niko and he shrugged. They’d have to tell someone, sometime, and T’Chantem knew how to both be discreet and how to properly fold a tie so it wouldn’t crease. “Your Princeship, it would be easier to show you.” Her fingers were wiggling in the air like sea anemones with red mist forming and ebbing. “However, to put the image directly into your head would be….invasive. I haven’t perfected the gentle conveyance of knowledge through a simple neuroelectric interface. So I’ll try to explain it in words. Twenty years ago Wanda Maximoff had a vision of the world’s end. It happened at the hands of a villain she named Thanos. This was a foe beyond any of the Avengers and she could not predict any way to beat him. Magic, at least the variety that she and now I practice, is stable and predictable in small moves, but the larger the area of impact, the more variance we must allow for. It’s a form of chaos containment and reality distortion. My father however, practices a much more refined magic, tied directly to ancient mystic arts. This house is built around those principals which is why I’m not yet fully the master here. Or is it Mistress?” Theo looked to Niko for clarification, but he only urged her to continue. “My father’s magic is very formulaic; if you do this, you get this. If you do it the same way you’ll get the same results each time. There’s a predictable arrogance to it and that suited my father. The two of them did not often collaborate when it came to magic, to my knowledge their longest moment of collaboration was roughly nine months before I was born, followed by a magical night three months later when my mother was almost in her second trimester. Kinky. So, knowing that you may appreciate it when I tell you that they struggled to work together in the best of times. But when my mother had her vision of the world’s doom and she took this knowledge to the others they began to suspect that she may have imagined it. She was known to be in possession of a fractured mind. That’s a terrifying threat in a mutant as powerful as her. They did not want to believe her because, who would want to believe that the world was coming to an end at the hands of someone they had no hope of defeating? They humored my mother, afraid to confront her with their honest opinions. They played along for the most part. But my mother was never playing, she was working on a means of defending this planet and its people.” Theo hopped up and moved over to the chair beside T’Chantem where she sat on the edge of the seat and leaned forward with her hands dancing in the air as if she were blind and reading the face of a loved one. Slowly, the red mist shifted and broke off into five stones of different color. They spun in the air on display and she reached up to pluck the green (time) stone and hold it gently in the palm of her hand.


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