3157/Moms Can Be Right Sometimes

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Moms Can Be Right Sometimes
Date of Scene: 29 August 2020
Location: Living Quarters - Four Freedoms Plaza
Synopsis: Mother-daughter chat. Its all kinds of uncomfortable!
Cast of Characters: Susan Richards, Valeria Richards

Susan Richards has posed:
    Despite popular rumor, there ARE normal days in the Richards family home; and some times it's not even relative! Not VERY relative. When there are enough technological wonders being built at any given time that you occasionally make to make sure no one eats one out of the fridge it can never be PERFECTLY stable, but nothing's exploded, no one's been mutated, and reality - to Susan's knowledge - is not presently under threat.
    So it's relatively serene.
    Sadly, Susan can't quite bring herself to enjoy it; Between Val's... difficult phase, and Victor getting ambitious, it's a little hard to just put everything out of your head. Hence she finds herself staring uselessly at the contents of a fridge whose door has been held open a good four minutes, just sighing intermittently.

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria had disappeared to Metropolis for a couple days, allegedly to check out Titans Tower and meet up with a couple of friends there. Teenagers tend to forget that there is a better than average chance that Instagram isn't exactly unknown to parental units, so those additional tags at the Music Hall for a concert and swinging by Planet Herowood maaaay be on mom and dad's radar.

Or maybe not!

But since she's returned, Val's been relatively quiet, keeping largely to her room, and if her parents peek in to check on her, she's deep at work on some sort of engineering project involving a lot of metal parts and clear crystals.

But for the moment, she's popping out of her room to grab something to drink before returning to... whatever she's working on. It's drawn a lot of her attention the past day or so, even enough that her posting to the 'gram has dropped to about two posts a day instead of ten or more.

"Hey Mom," Val chirps as she enters the kitchen. "Do we have any juice, because I'm sick of fizzy water."

Susan Richards has posed:
    As a matter of fact, Susan was aware of Val's escapades to some extent. She pays people to know more about social media than her these days, but she still keeps up on the basics, and... well, there are worse ways to make sure your children are behaving.
    She's not quite sure what to do in this instance. If Val hasn't gotten the idea from their last talk, she's not sure what she can say or do without just driving her away right now. At least she didn't do anything that bad! Probably! That she documented! Best to let the small stuff slide until it piles up, basically, in the short term.
    So her voice is a little awkward and heavy when she says "Oh... Hi, Val." Before casting a curious look into the fridge, as if she's only just now looking properly. "IIIII think? Ah." Susan steps aside and indicates the open fridge with one hand, "Take your pick, there's orange, and grape and..." Susan leans in again briefly with a mild squint, "... Pretty much just orange and grape."
    Susan silently lets Val get as far as setting a glass down, before she asks, "... So! How've you been? Working on anything fun?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
Val grabs the orange juice and is about to pour the cup about half full when Sue's question hits. "Um. Fine, I guess. And just... a belt." Seems a bit underwhelming actually. She puts the orange juice away and then takes a swig. She actually makes a bit of a face-- it's really sweet and she doesn't have a huge sweet tooth. "I'm hoping my theories on quantum field structure prove correct," she adds after a moment. "But considering its just a prorotype--" her phone makes a fwip! noise and she checks it real quick. A grin actually crosses her lips, and she fires off a reply instantly. "Mm, yeah. Sorry. I'm trying to increase expansion without entanglement at this point and its proving tedious."

Susan Richards has posed:
    At some point in her life Susan more or less made peace with the fact no amount of exposure would make her fully understand the exact sequences of words that sometimes come out of her husband's and daughter's mouthes, but it still tends to bring a smile to her face since they typically mean her loved ones are having a good time! Or at least applying themselves.
    "Sounds like a heck of a belt." She says, pointing out Val's initial understatement with no derision, and having a bit of fun with her unfortunate lack of understanding.
    She does glance to the side a bit, though, as Valeria engages with her phone; a process that tends to make Susan feel a little bit like a third wheel in an odd way.
    She grimaces a little and decides she ought to risk bringing the room down. "... Have you... seen Jason again? Since everything?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
A sudden flush hits Valeria's cheeks. Also clearly visible in her room has been a well-worn leather jacket a bit too big for her that she's gleefully taken a couple of Instagram shots in (in fact one of those is pinned right now) so its not exactly...


"Ahhh. Mm." Valeria glances to her mom and makes a face. "This is one of those Mom trick questions because if I say no, you are going to be mad I lied, but if I say yes you're going to be mad I did." Very annoying to have a super genius teenager. She looks a bit sulky for a moment. And defensive.

Susan Richards has posed:
    Susan smiles a bit ruefully and says, "Honey, if I already know the answer, then I already feel the way I'm gonna feel. So only the lie can make things worse." Susan tilts her head to the side and notes, partly to herself, "... plus he could've... just left the jacket there the first time."
    Susan sighs a little. "Well, you told me anyway. So." She looks to Val thoughtfully. "Has he been..." Susan searches for a word, and shrugs her shoulders a tiny bit, settling on "... respectful?"
    It sounds suspiciously less like 'stay away from that awful boy' talk and a little more like 'is he being good?' talk. And then, perhaps surprisingly, "... Is he all right?"
    Susan wasn't lying to Jason about the funeral. Susan keeps her emotions relatively guarded around the kids, but one might remember some red eyes and a quivering voice when she first told you and Franklin than Jason was gone five or so years back.

Valeria Richards has posed:
"He's..." Valeria considers her answer. "He's really sweet." She's mildly surprised at herself for that, but its also disturbingly truthful. "He... ugh, Mom." She actually does turn a dark red now, taking a slow drink of her juice to try and not really answer that. Putting the cup down, she glances aside. "I think so? I mean, he's still him. As far as I can tell. Maybe a little more... sharp." It's a word that encompasses a lot, despite being relatively benign. "He has so many scars--" Valeria's tone had softened a lot at that, though she cuts herself off quickly. Jason had come out of her room shirtless and its doubtful Sue missed them, either, but reminders of that might not be a good path to go down.

Susan Richards has posed:
    Susan can't help but smile a little bit at that, even though she SHOULD be mad. She is, a little. She tries to focus on that and wrangle her expression back to something neutral; a process that's made easier by the reminder of the state of Jason's body. "Bruce and his boys... put themselves through a lot." She says softly, her voice a little disapproving. "We try to teach them all we can, but..." Susan shakes her head. If Reed and Susan have been slow to fully include their children in the more adventurous aspects of their lives, Jason represents a pretty good reason why. Speaking of which, "... Has he said anything about how he... 'came back'?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria looks a little uncomfortable at that question. "He... says one of the Bats enemies has some sort of chemical that can revive the dead. It sounds insane," and this is coming from a Richards, so crazy is normal around here. "One of them... has a crush?" she winces. "On Mr. Bruce. And I think she did it to make him happy?" The explanation Jay had given her wasn't exactly too clear and really she had more questions than answers. "He said it was awful. I think he was avoiding details to spare me some things." Valeria actually looks distant and worried. She forces the look from her face. This isn't a thing. She didn't just text him that she missed him. That would be too much like a thing.

Susan Richards has posed:
    Susan frowns deeply at that, grimacing slightly at the mention of Bruce's enemy 'liking' him a little too much, and the confusion behind it. Susan's... more than familiar with villainous crushes and complicated relationships with enemies. She's lucky that only one of them has affected her children thus far, and in a mostly positive way.
    "... God." Susan says very softly, closing her eyes. She's not sure who could be responsible - Bruce isn't THAT open with them. It couldn't have been that strange burglar, certainly? She hopes Jason's really all right, she really does, but... "Honey..." she hesitates with a little huff of tension, not perfectly sure how to say this. "... I really don't want to dictate who you can be friends with. We... we're never going to have a 'normal' life, but... I hope you at least understand why I worry? About him?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
Another fwip!. Valeria looks at her texts as her mother starts in on what will assuredly be a lecture about Negative Zone space lizards... but she stops breathing a moment as she reads, then puts the phone back down without replying just yet. When she remembers to breathe again, its shallow and distracted, her expression a mix of confusion and glee. "Mm? What Mom?" She should have tried to pay attention. She blinks a bit, focusing. "Oh, um. He said Dad can look him over. And... I..."

Her fingers run over the back of her phone. Half of her prodigious mind is trying to decide how to reply. If she should.

"...I really like him, Mom." Valeria admits, looking almost abashed.

Susan Richards has posed:
    Susan squints for a long moment when she realizes she went unheard, and sighs unhappily, putting one hand over one of her eyes and rubbing her forehead. "... That would be good." She says tiredly of Reed checking Jason, though her narrow eye widens curiously at what Val says next.
    Susan's hand slowly, almost cautiously drifts away from her face, and she blinks curiously. "... Oh..?" she says slowly, "... how much 'like' are we talking, here?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
"I don't know," Valeria responds quietly, staring at her phone a moment. She sends a text and gets a reply, which only makes her put the phone face down on the table. Not upset. But obviously unsure. "Its just... stupidness and hormones, I'm sure," she says after a moment, trying to blow it off. "Its fine mom. Its nothing."

Susan Richards has posed:
    Susan presses her lips together thoughtfully. "... Stupidness and hormones made me chase your father into space." She offers softly with a little smile. "It's not always nothing."

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria wrinkles her nose a bit at that. "I feel like I'm falling through microgravity, and I don't know what to do about it." She doesn't look at her phone, doesn't reply. "I just..." she shakes her head. "Its... not supposed to be... anything. No space chasing. No... ugh, whatever it is you and Dad..."

Susan Richards has posed:
    "You mean love?" Susan concludes with a confused tilt of her head. Now there's an alien idea to her. Her romantic life has been... complex at times, but never for lack of attachment.
    This is kinda complicated. She'd expected some variety of this conversation sooner or later. She'd just sort of hoped it would be with a more wholesome candidate. Still, Susan is an honest person, and hovers somewhere on the corner of 'romantic' and 'realist', having never quite shaken the former from her youth. So she responds "... Well, you never really get to pick what your heart wants, honey." She averts her eyes a little shiftily "... if you're lucky it picks one at a time." she clears her throat softly, "... But, you know... it's not like you have to decide today whether to marry him and start a family. You can just... feel this way for a while, and see if it lasts. See if it fits with what you want your life to be?"
    She carefully doesn't note that Valeria may be a tiny bit too young to have settled on the latter either.

Valeria Richards has posed:
Val does finally send another response, which despite how incredibly not laid back she feels, she is able to word just casually enough to suit her. There. Nothing thats a big deal or anything.

She looks at her mother and looks aghast. There is a lot of stammering and not a lot of coherent words. "I never said anything like that! It... I just... its not like that." Another response, but she breathes easier about this one. She lets out a soft sigh of relief, almost. She fires off a response... they come a lot easier when they aren't touching on things like this.

"Its just... not at all like that," she protests. Maybe a little too hard, even to herself. "I just like him. And... I want Dad to make sure he isn't a space lizard. So you guys can be less worried I'm dating," that already sounds like a lot more than it was supposed to be, "a space lizard. Or maybe a space tick. Are we doing ticks now?"

Susan Richards has posed:
    The look Susan gives Valeria as she protests is somewhere between sympathy and amusement. It's sweet! Sort of! She kind of wishes Val would be enamored with a slightly happier, healthier corner of their little world, but childhood crushes need not grow into much more! Unless you're Susan Storm, but... that's probably not genetic!
    "Oh, we don't get space ticks here!" She says cheerfully. "After that whole thing with your uncle Johnny, we..." For a moment, Susan looks distant, and a little haunted, but she shakes her head and smiles again, "... We're very careful now!"
    Ahem. "Anyway. Uhm." Susan shakes her head, "... Whatever 'it' is... as long as you're thoughtful, I'm sure it'll turn out fine." A beat. "... Just keep checking in with us?"

Valeria Richards has posed:
"Yeah..." Valeria swallows a bit, then drops her empty glass in the sink. "I'm gonna... head back to my room and see if a partial occlusion will still function for basic structural development." Whatever that's about.

Susan Richards has posed:
    Ah. The science dodge. Susan knows it well. Sadly, unless the situation warrants physical intervention, there's little she can do to counter it, and she simply chuckles very softly and sighs, "Good lucky, honeeeeyyy." as Val leaves.
    She sighs. The toughest part of parenting a teenager is it'll be years before she can conclusively know if they were paying attention to any given conversation.