4629/Secret Garden

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Secret Garden
Date of Scene: 06 January 2021
Location: Abandoned Subway
Synopsis: Noriko kidnaps Jubilee to a rat, cockroach, etc etc hell hole in New Jersey where they 'might be shivved.' Apparently it is one of Nori's old stomping grounds and Noriko shares something very private and precious to her. The Good Witch Ororo somehow appears, contributes to the cool, and starts a paint war before leaving on a well placed gust of wind.
Cast of Characters: Noriko Ashida, Jubilation Lee, Ororo Munroe

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko didn't tell Jubes where they were going.  In fact, she made her put on a blindfold.  Then she grabs her little black leather belt she uses.  Someone must have made this for her at some point.  Not like she'd have the access or resources to do so.  She slips two cans into her little spray paint holsters and then grabs a little sack that she slings around to the front so it won't bore into Jubes.

"One sec," Noriko mentions somewhere behind the girl, then zips into position in front of her, a light breeze in her wake.  "You're riding piggyback, hop on!"  Which is to say, Noriko's going to back up and bend down to reach and help Jubilee.

Pending no mishaps or them falling over...or after those possibilities, Noriko takes off, down from the dorms, out of the school and for a little ride over to Gotham, avoiding transportation for several reasons.  Eventually, after a descent that feels like the log ride * 3, the sounds of the city grow hollow, distant, and bounce off of the walls around them till they are swallowed whole.

It's chilly down here, and Noriko says, "Hi," to someone who doesn't answer back, but it does sound like they've made themselves sparse afterwards.

And so she takes off Jubilee's blindfold.  Noriko sets up a portable work light in a blink.  There's the beginnings of what might be some kind of mural.  "So...I wanted to share..."  Awkward.  Noriko reaches to her belt and lifts one of her colors to offer it out to Jubilee.  "This kept me alive inside," she explains.  She's not so smooth at this...kind of bumbling it out and moving through all of these quickly.  Anxiousness.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    Blindfold? Jubilee's initial reaction is to protest. There's just something so spooky about having that all important sense of sight taken away. The initial wave of discomfort, however, washes away as the past year edges forward in Jubilee's mind. Getting to know each other. Building trust. Sharing memories. And then, whatever the hell has been going on the last couple of days. Jubilation might not like losing her sight -- it's still spooky -- but she wasn't afraid. In fact, once in that piggy-back position, Jubes brings one arm across Noriko's chest and links up with her other arm -- a reverse hug -- while keeping her chin perched over her shoulder. Jubilation learned to love the extreme speeds of journeys like this. Sure, she always needed a minute at the end of it and never really appreciated any sudden changes in speed or velocity, but she really came to love it.

    "Oookay...Okkay..." Jubes murmurs as she finds her footing, her sneakers scraping against the moist concrete. She bends forward and rests her hands on her thighs. "Ooohhhhh...You're getting slower..." Jubilee teases. She lets out a breath and straightens up, only requiring ten or so seconds to get her bearings before opening her eyes.

    Jubilee's initial reaction isn't so great. When she was a runaway, she lived at the mall so it was hard to have an appreciation for a place like this. As she inspects the station, the walls, the grunge, Jubes says nothing. She's stunned into silence. She's not the brightest girl by any means but it's not long before she forms an idea of why she was brought here. Her brown eyes linger on Noriko, studying her as she reaches out to take the can of paint. Always eager, always ready, Jubilee begins shaking the can -- the clang of the little ball bouncing around inside the paint echoes through the chamber.

    "Did you do this?" Jubilee asks as she stands in front of the mural, staring as if doing so would unlock its secrets.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
"You can't handle my speed," Noriko says with a cocky smirk.  "Sorry...I was excited."  No anxious.  She has butterflies in her stomach.  She /can/ do it where the ride isn't so rough and at least there were no turns or Gs too horrible for Jubilee, but it was a leeettle worse at the end than Noriko's usual slow down when Jubes is wheeling it.

Noriko's heart is in her throat.  This isn't where one should bring a girl they like...a lot...at all.  And suddenly it hits her when she hears a mouse scuttle across the ground about 15 feet away.  Safe enough, but a heavy reminder of her old life.  When Jubilee begins to shake the can she's given though, Noriko takes a breath she'd been holding.

"...Yeah," Noriko rubs the back of her neck with her gauntlet, small hairs getting snagged without a thought.  "I mean.  It doesn't say anything.  It doesn't mean anything..."  It's just a big array of bursting colors.  There's a flow to it, chunky currents where the layers of color build on each other like a swell of an impressionist sea.  "I come out here sometimes still...uh, one sec.  You don't have to wait on me."

Noriko bursts around the area, stop-motioning into a kneeling position each time to burst the ground with bits of electricity which reach out strong enough to fry some rats, roaches, and other vermin.  Then she kick-the-can kicks the rats into the darkness beyond where they would ever set foot.  No one likes to smell burning rat.

The speedster shakes her other can, not realizing she's blurring it back and forth.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    Jubilation brings a hand up and rakes it through her hair. When she was a freshman, it had been shorter and somewhat spiky, but over the past few years she had let it grow and grow, falling below her shoulders and becoming thick and wavy with little ringlets. It was a totally-inspired-by-the-80s kind of look but it meant that a trip like this was hell for it.

    While an apparent apocalypse happens in the darkness, too fast for her to comprehend, Jubes stands with her hand on her hip, her weight tilted to one side as she poses there like that, one leg stuck out. She rocks from side to side, shifting her weight from one hip to the other as she stares at the mural. The expression of colors all blending together, apparently without meaning, capture Jubilee's imagination. She turns her head and looks over her shoulder at Noriko, a huuuuuuge smile on her face.

    "It's beautiful, Noriko..." She usually said 'Nori' but sometimes that just didn't sound right. Didn't feel right. Now was one of those times.

    Jubilee knew a thing or two about bringing color into this world, literally and figuratively. It was both her personality and her power. And yet... She releases the lean on her hip and inches closer to Noriko. She extends her hand so her can of paint is suspended in the air next to Nori's, her forearm just a blush away from touching the gauntlet. "Show me how?" she requests, lifting her eyes to stare.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko's only hair has a life of its own.  She usually uses barrettes when she runs, but with how much speeds she's been generating, she's forgone them completely and has had quite a few hair shakes built into her running habits.  It's annoying, and she has determined that her hair looking anything like she imagines or wants to imagine is a foregone conclusion.

'Noriko.'  She grins, not a word in return, but what she says is in her eyes.  'I'm glad you are here.'  Noriko hasn't shown this to anyone.  It's not like people haven't seen it.  The homeless around here let her come here freely on account of how much she tries to help out around the place.  Getting water, bringing food when she can or over the counter meds...or other meds that she yanks straight from the donation centers.  She makes sure her people get what they need.  Some of these people helped her, took her in.  Or rather, let her have a spot even though she was a threat to everyone.  Here, she can work in peace and now she wants to share it.

Noriko pauses when Jubilee inches closer.  She can feel her charge awaken inside, buzzing harder with the beat of her heart, but the gauntlets make things a lot easier.  "Yeah."  She whips her own can into her holster and gently takes Jubilee's wrist, guiding her as she almost whispers in her ear behind her.  "So, you want to not get too close or it will run and not dry evenly."  Noriko takes Jubilee through the basics, gentle and patient as they lay out more background just to practice applying it evenly.  "See?"  But, excited, Noriko doesn't stay for the answer.

Like a sonic boomerang, Noriko's away, crinkling the sack and laing out more colors, the full palette of the mural and a few more.  Then she grabs a piece of cardboard sprayed over and over and appears back next to Jubilee, reaching to take her arm gently.  "I used to use this to create finer edges.  But I brought bigger ones," to make it easier.  She points back behind them. Leaning to the side are large curved pieces of fresh cardboard of different shapes and sizes.  She didn't bring them with them; she brought them ahead of time.  This was prepared, even if she forgot to clear out the vermin ahead of time.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    Jubilee's gaze shifts, eyes darting to the side as she feels the gauntlet take hold of her wrist. She bites down on her lower lip, grinning against the pressure of her teeth. "Yeah..." she answers. "...I see..." And so, a distracted Jubilation would be guided through her first lesson in creating street art with spray paint.

    The last spritz of paint plays off Nori's sudden departure, leaving Jubilee laughing joyfully -- a total mouth-open, eyes-shut sort of laugh. There was just something so fun about a speedster launching off from just a whisper away. But then... as quickly as she left, Nori was back and Jubilee's arm was hers. The laugh stops as suddenly as it started. A lump in her throat held it back.

    She follows the point, her attention fluttering towards the collection of cardboard shapes. "...I always WONDERED how that was done!" she exclaims, grinning from ear to ear. "What are we going to paint?"

Ororo Munroe has posed:
"You do have a talent," says a voice from far too close behind the pair. Ororo Munroe is standing there, in bare feet and soft trousers, a white shirt allowing her modesty. She knows that the two will whip around, and is close enough to be struck if so. It is a danger, and her own choice.

Standing there, she points to a section, unfinished. "That is where you ran out of crimson? It looks as if there were some things you wanted to say still." She has a sharp eye, long fingers...and a nose for her students in trouble.

A raised eyebrow is all that she has on her face. Well, it hardly needs more.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
"Maybe a turtle or two chasing some fish?" Noriko didn't think /that/ far ahead.  "Whatever we want," she says with a rare joyousness.  "That's what makes it fun.  You can't mess up.

At the sudden voice, Noriko places herself between it and Jubilee.  It isn't always safe down here, and she never expected to hear Ororo, so the voice doesn't register at first.  She buzzes with electricity crackling up from her gauntlets through her biceps, her shoulders, and dissipating up her neck in tiny jumps.

"I was starting a reef," Noriko says in rote response.  She still breathes fast and shallow, but that just might be only shallow and her natural pace.  Noriko doesn't mind getting in trouble, but getting Jubilee in trouble?  That's a different story.  Her eyes have a rare pleading to them, eyes locked with Ororo's.

"Do we have to go back now?"

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    "I like the sound of /that/!" Jubilee exclaims, giving her paint can another shake. She's about to lean forward and press down, perhaps to throw the first bit of color that would be the beginning of a turtle's shell. The new sound -- the unexpected voice behind them -- causes Jubilee to shriek a little, sending the paint can to the ground where it announces its retreat with the jingle jangle of whatever was inside.

    The arcing blue tones of Noriko's electricity reflect back at Ororo in Jubilee's brown eyes, which have now opened about as wide as they could. "...Yeah, do we?" she calls out, her own whine echoing throughout the tunnels.

Ororo Munroe has posed:
Ororo frowns; something in Noriko's questions concerns her. She lowers her hand, slender and dark, to her side. The rearrangement of her thoughts is obvious, she was about to comment upon the stylistic choices, but now finds herself being thought of differently than intended.

"You truly do not know me, my darling ladies," she says softly. She bends, then comes up with a can of paint. "I grew up on the streets of Cairo, owning nothing but the clothes I bore upon my body. There is little you can do which will shock me," she says, as she finds a small strip of wall in need of markings.

As she speaks, she begins to spray. The wall gains a stripe, a curl, and becomes a breath of wind. She gradients the paint, arching it to give a faded texture. She's done this before.

"I was a thief, a scoundrel, and far worse than an artist." She taps the can to give a burst, a firework exploding in the sky, then says without turning, "And you are both young adults now. What right would I have to drag you home?"

There's something in her words, there. She keeps her eyes hidden against the memories. How well do you actually know this woman, who does not care about the things so many teachers rail about? Who cares about freedom, and truth..

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko resists the urge to take Jubilee's hand, for multiple reasons, the electricity coursing through her body, the instinct to hide /everything/.  The misplaced paranoia born from New Year's festivities.

"Oh," no Noriko does not know Ororo very well, even if the woman has taken her into her care and shown her support.  She watches as Ororo works, her head tilts to the side, much slower for her, more like a blip for everyone else.  "I don't really believe you," but how could she not?  Somehow the words that have always come from Ororo's mouth just /sound/ true.  She could say she sleeps on the moon and everyone would believe her.  Nori's sure of it.

Ororo knows how to survive, and Noriko surmises that she also knows that Noriko has had to be those things too.  "I don't know," what right, "but-" she doesn't know.  Ororo always disarmed her.  She seems to relax some, wondering why she was so uptight and not realizing the true source of her initial terror and skittishness.

"Thanks."  A soft grin appears and Noriko picks up the can Jubilee dropped, offering it to her. "Here," she says softly.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    The bridge of Jubilation's nose wrinkles a touch. Something stinks and it's not the rats. Her eyes study Nori, as if looking for a clue to how she should react. Jubilee was less inclined towards being suspicious, though, and the confusion is fast to clear.

    With a smile, Jubes takes the can from Nori and turns to watch Ororo for a few moments, her eyes tracing paths along the wind, the curls, the shapes. "You are, like, the coolest teacher!" she exclaims, the Mall Rat intonation suddenly returning. Moments ago, when it had just been the two of them, Jubilee's voice was...softer, sweeter, and less gregarious. But now? Now there's a clearance sale in the shoe department.

    Jubilee flashes a grin at Nori and approaches a section of the wall that has not yet been discovered by her art. She shakes the can again.

Ororo Munroe has posed:
"Well, I'm far from perfect," Ororo says as she spritzes her can straight up in the air. She wafts the winds and makes it spin, a small red tornado, and it sprays in all directions. She gets droplets of red on her nose, her cheeks, and on whatever else is exposed.

The giggle she gives at the effects of nature on this is easy, and too rarely heard. "I hope you both weren't expecting to come home tidy. But I've apparently painted the ceiling."

Pointing upward, there's a spiral on the roof that was not there a moment before. She's also filthy and in desperate need of a shower. "That was my symbol, once. Noone could guess how it was done."

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko just grins softly, clueing Jubilee in as she leans on her sixth sense, the one that sniffs out teacher trouble, and okay, a bit informed by her own experiences with Ororo and her tones.  It's not a trap!

"Yeah.  She's the coolest."  And if Nori knew about Ororo's time in Cairo, her player certainly doesn't remember it.  But didn't Noriko say something similar about Logan not too long ago?  Apparently multiple adults can hold this title, though probably for different reasons.

"I just want to know how you found us," Noriko says, suddenly appears with a different color tip on her can.  She doesn't grab any of that cardboard.  Truth is, it'd take forever if someone used cardboard.  Noriko has the benefit of being able to 'wind' dry it quick though, so, it becomes obvious they are training wheels for someone when she just starts free-styling out some bright green kelp over on the leftmost border that is on part of a wedge created by subway detritus.

It's a good thing that Noriko is wearing an old pair of shoes.  In fact, she's wearing an 'old' pair of anything.  About the only thing she owns that hasn't come from a consignment shop are the shoes she got for Christmas.  She's stooping to pick up a can that rolled near Ororo, coming out of her speed for the others' sake, when the tornado spray records her silhouette in negative space against the wall like some some inverted shadow lightly exploding.  Eyes shut tight, "I really need some goggles..." she mumbles and wipes her mouth and eyes.

Noriko looks over her shoulder at the result, and then up at the spiral.  "Cool."

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    Paint tornado? Jubilee shrieks as paint splatters on her clothes, her hair, her cheeks. The shriek morphs into an eyes-closed laugh. Her bright yellow crew-neck sweatshirt -- the one with the words PICK ME BOB! printed across the breast -- is inheriting red droplets of paint, giving it a more homemade quality. Her hair, though? A total disaster. Worst dye job ever.

    "Symbol, huh?" Jubes mutters, grinning up at the ceiling. She removes her pink sunglasses -- well, pink with red splatters -- and tilts her arm over to give them to Nori to wear. Goggles. This exposes a sunglasses-shaped clearing on her face where paint hadn't splattered. Looking good, Jubes!

    Jubilee shakes her can again and moves the nozzle to the wall. After a few discrete spurts, the section of wall has a nice collection of blue sparkles, stars, and firework trails. The start of her symbol. Jubes turns towards Nori and indicates the can, as if to silently ask about additional colors?

Ororo Munroe has posed:
The smile that answers Noriko's query is mischievous. The silence, more so. "You don't expect me to tell you all of my secrets do you, Noriko?" Ororo flips the red can towards Jubilee, not deigning to tell how she found them. I suppose the only way to find out is tickle torture. To the tallest, most statuesque teacher on the staff...

Hm. Maybe not?

Ororo opens her mouth, saying something in South African. It has a melodic set of clicks and a tortured syllable, but she smiles as she does. "The wind in the dust, it means. I suppose it doesn't translate perfectly. I'd love to teach the African dialect, but there are just so many hours in a day, and really, there are better things to put on the school roster."

Combat rating highly on the scale, a language that is rarely used has never been very valuable. But it's sad; it's her heritage.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko is used to Jubilee's exclamations, but is surprised to see no unplanned emission of plasmoids.  She takes the sunglasses and wipes them off on the back of her cargo pants, then slides them on.  She doesn't look half as good in them as Jubes, but they do really compliment her hair color.

The girl looks over her shoulder again and says, "I guess that's my symbol," with a metallic thumb kicked out.  Speaking of metallic, her gauntlets are a mess, but she doesn't seem to care.  She thinks they're ugly as sin anyways.

At Jubilee's look, Noriko hrrrms.  Of course Jubilee would want more colors, but there are only 4 or 5 cans in the sack, and wouldn't Noriko spray through those pretty quickly with some of those high-flow tips?  Well she did just lose her, again, something she hasn't told Ororo.

"Uh, yeah.  We have more.  Just not too many."  ZIP!  Noriko appears with the sack to show Jubes, all of them snuggled in next to each other.


"Ha, I can try," Noriko tosses a smirk to Ororo, always hop skipping around with her conversations with ease.  Well /almost/ always.  "I'm also a pretty good spy, and I have my own means of extracting information."

Noriko silently appreciates the saying Ororo provides for a few moments.  "I don't know what it really means in your mother tongue, but I like it."  Let's be honest.  Noriko has favorites in the faculty and staff.  Her open generosity is a big signal of that.  "That'd be cool, learning it, but I'd probably botch it horribly and ask for the hat dishes to be fast cooked high rare."

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    The red can of paint lands in Jubilee's outstretched hand with a smack. She smiles at it and tilts her head back so Ororo can get some of it. "Thanks!" she chirps. She tosses it up into the air, catches it, tosses it, catches it.

    Jubes smiles up at Noriko again, her eyebrows hiking a bit. The blue can of paint is placed on the ground and when Jubes comes back up, she reaches her hand out for the pink sunglasses on Nori's face. She adjusts them just a touch, smiles, and then starts adding red sparkles to her 'symbol.'

    The red can is set on the ground, next to bluey, as Nori appears at her side with a bag of cans. While keeping eye contact, Jubes reaches her hand into the bag and rescues one of the cans. Green. "Thanks," she says softly.

    Jubes turns back to the wall, shakes the can, and adds green sparkles, explosions, and trails. DONE. Jubes turns from the wall and shakes the can again and again and again. It made such a fun sound... Jubilee falls silent, just for the moment, as she watches Noriko and Ororo. Her smile extends to the limits of her face as she listens and watches. She's silent except for that jingle jangle of whatever's in that can.

Ororo Munroe has posed:
There's something in Ororo's face that says without words. It says I See You, and I saw what you did there. While she may be unsure what to say at times, there are clear moments when she knows that it's best not to talk. Interrupting two people who are becoming close, that is one of those times. A step back, she watches them together.

Bare feet, she is surprisingly quiet. The girls are here for each other, and while she may in fact be a cool teacher, part of that is knowing when to back off. So a zephyr touches Jubes' ear, a touch of wind brushes back Noriko's hair. It is between them, to make them look at each other. And she fades back into the shadows.

Goodnight, ladies. I will see you at class. Perhaps after a shower though.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
Noriko can't help but steal a few glances in Jubilee's direction.  She can't help it.  A grin here or there.  She's so distracted that she forgets she's not doing all of this at hyper velocity, so there's a stop-motion like quality to her looks as she inadvertently leans into her habit of stopping for people to see her.  It's a courtesy for those around her, and right now it isn't doing her any favor as it brings even more attention to it all.

"Oh.  Thanks," Noriko mumbles when Jubilee straightens the glasses.  Only crooked?  She's lucky that they didn't fly off and hit Jubilee in the side of her face!

Ororo has likely seen such little dances hundreds of times.  They happen all over the school!  She doesn't notice Ororo leave.  She's stuck in her moment, stuck in a tunnel of speed-aided hyperfocus.  But then looks over her shoulder.  Ororo is gone like the wind...quite literally.  "I think she's a witch," she teases in general to break the silence.

"You think she came to make sure we didn't get shivved or just chaperone?"  Noriko smirks.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    Some of those glances are stolen but some of them are given. Returned. Exchanged. Enjoyed. More than a few times, Jubilee's gazes were book-ended by shy glances at the ground, the murals, the paint can. Whatever happened to be there.

    "You're welcome..." is all Jubes can say, really, as she straightens out the sunglasses. She turns away from Nori, staring at Ororo for a second, smiling at the teacher. Just smiling at the world. Just smiling. It didn't matter that they were in some dank crypt -- a museum of Gotham City's vague attempts at underground transit. It didn't matter at all.

    The gentle wind on her ear hikes Jubilee's eyebrows a touch and she turns in its direction, finding Noriko there. And then... not finding Ororo. "You may be right..." Jubes agrees, the Valley Girl intonation fading away.

    "Wait... we could get shivved?"

Noriko Ashida has posed:
"How did you survive on the streets?" Noriko genuinely and half genuinely asks Jubilee with a little smirk and a spritz of blue under the sprayed lettering of her shirt.  Then suddenly she grabs her green can that still has the fine nozzle on it and sprays out what it originally said.  Oh wait...there's another color, and another.  It's now a cornucopia of rainbow.

"Don't move."  Noriko races around Jubes to generate some airrr in her direction, causing the paint to kind of move out from the center like like it was kind of splatted.

"I'm totally right.  She's a weather witch!  But yeah I'd like to find out how she found us because that could seriously put a damper on any operations with consequence," Noriko says as if this were a serious matter.  She shakes her head and shrugs.  "I was thinking of making this a fishbowl in the end, put a glare and a lip on it.  What do you think?"  She up-nods to the mural.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    "It was the streets of Beverly Hills," Jubilee answers. Her eyes lower a little, not wanting to look at Nori as she answers. She knew that right? Jubes bites her lip, more than a little embarrassed. "...And a mall..." The wind from Ororo's departure carries away the final remains of Jubilee's street-cred.

    When the paint starts spraying in her direction, it's enough to pull her away from feeling sorry for herself. Both hands, one still holding the can of GREEN from earlier, come up to cover her face as she squeals happily. "Stop ittttt!" she cries out, obviously not at all upset about it.

    Jubilee catches her breath as her laughter putters out and her eyes lift to observe the mural. "I...I think it's wonderful," she answers, staring at where the fishbowl might go, glare, lip, and all of it. "You just forgot one thing..."

    "This!" she says as she sprays her can in Nori's direction! Obviously, she's going to miss easily, but... still. She does it.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
"I don't know what the streets of Beverly Hills are like," Noriko says with a shrug.  "If you were able to fit in a mall while homeless, then you know how it goes.  In Beverly Hills that must be even more impressive."  Noriko, finding a silver lining?  Did anyone even know she had this capability?  To call it a talent would be a stretch.  Did /she/ even know she had it?

"I'm betting I would have been picked up immediately, lightning blasts aside."  Noriko shrugs.  "I had a lot of help.  People kept feeling bad because they couldn't get social services to pick me up, so they stuck around."  She is, well, making light of her time on the streets.  There are a lot more dangers around and Noriko didn't have the kind of food fuel that would allow her to zip around.

Noriko beeeams at Jubilee in response to her and, well, pretends like she doesn't see it coming, getting sprayed square on the side of her head and pulling up her gauntlet to no-look 'karate' block the spray after it is done.  "You're really asking for it," she says with a smirk.  "I /will/ give you tiger hair!"  Noriko snickers as she thinks of Jubes as Tigger.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    "...It didn't go well," Jubes admits, leaving it at that. She knew Nori had a rough go of it and it didn't make much sense to play who-had-it-worse. But, such is a mutant's life, isn't it?

    Jubilee smiles -- something about Noriko's story just warms her heart. Strangers stepping up and helping out. Random acts of kindness. She was a sucker for it.

    "Oh....Nori! I'm...." Jubes starts, initially shocked that she actually made contact with the paint. "....Sorry!" The last word comes out as the gauntlet karate blocks way, way, way too late. The smirk changes everything. Jubilee's smile returns...but then fades.

    "...We gotta get back," she admits glumly. "Classes tomorrow. Can you believe it?" Jubes rolls her eyes at the thought before turning to lock eyes with Nori.

    "Thank you for bringing me here, though... Showing me..." she adds quietly, suddenly shy.

Noriko Ashida has posed:
"Eh, it never goes the way we want," Noriko nods and leaves it at that, wanting to help brush it off while still acknowledging Jubilee.  She's trying, even if she is continuing the conversation in a way.

"Why are you apologizing?  I totally could have dodged it."  It's like she was doing it to herself, Nori implies, smirk still holding.  She nods.  "Yeah.  Yeah.  Dumb classed.  Can't wait till we graduate."  Not 'I.'

Noriko looks down and up very quickly, too quickly.  That was instinct she couldn't slow down for Jubes even if she tried...because she couldn't try!  "Well, I'm glad you let me kidnap you..."  Her voice grows a little softer.  "Thanks for doing this with me."  Noriko could have brought her best friend here any time during the last year.  "And not judging me...I mean you can judge the rats and stuff all day long.  They're bastards," she says in reflex against her own vulnerability.

"Also, thanks for not making fun of my crabs."  She points to a dark corner where there are a little mountain of blue and red crabs with cartoon smiley faces and dilated eyes like they got into some special kelp.  They are not even in the same league of elegance as the rest of the mural implies.

"Hop on."  Before Jubilee can, Noriko has packed up and is in place to shuttle them both back to campus and all the way up to their room to beat curfew check...even if they have to jump in their beds with their clothes on to do it.  The clothing should be well past dry by now anyways.

Jubilation Lee has posed:
    "...Yeah...Me too..." Jubilee replies unconvincingly. The truth is that Jubes is terrified of graduating, but that's a conversation for another day. She has a plan for dealing with graduation.

    "It was the best hostage situation I've ever been in..." Jubilee adds, smiling as Nori thanks her for letting her kidnap her. As if she had much of a choice. She could have fought back, perhaps, but... she didn't have a choice.

    Jubilee's eyes light up as she finally notices the crabs. "These are the /best/!" Jubilee exclaims, reaching a hand out in their direction. "They're so adorbs!" Nori gets another grin. Despite the smell of death and broken dreams, this place was amazing and it was largely due to Nori's mural.

    "And... Why would I ever judge you?" Jubes questions. "We're in this together." Her grin widens and then... Wait! Perhaps wanting to leave her mark one last time, Jubes leans towards the wall just once more and sprays something important. Something that had to be sprayed.

    With that settled, Jubilee tucks her can into the bag draped across Noriko's chest. Her fingers slowly zip the bag, eyes locked. "Ready to go," she says before moving into position. Without her sunglasses, Jubilee closes her eyes for this one and clings to Noriko, cheek-to-cheek.

        2019 - 2020.