4642/No Slacking at Xavier's

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No Slacking at Xavier's
Date of Scene: 07 January 2021
Location: Balcony - Second Floor
Synopsis: Scott does not believe Ruth and Julio are working hard enough. Jean is there to offer helpful suggestions.
Cast of Characters: Scott Summers, Ruth Aldine, Julio Richter, Jean Grey

Scott Summers has posed:
It is the first sunny day of the year, which is nice, but not nice enough to keep the temperature over freezing. So, from the balcony on the second floor the backyard is weirdly empty despite the classes having finished for the day.

It is only the third day, but Scott already has homework to review. Of course, he was the first teacher to give homework, which helps explains why his bike keeps getting 'stolen'.

But said homework, a fairly slim stack of papers, is currently on a table, kept in place against the chilly wind by a large tablet. He came here to talk with a couple students before starting with the homework. The fact it is freezing is not a consideration. Or maybe it is, he has a much full of steaming chocolate at hand.

He asked Julio and Ruth to join him, supposedly with thirty minutes of each other, but he is not terribly surprised when both arrive at once. One gets used to odd timing things happening when dealing with Ruth. "Good afternoon," he greets, turning to face the students.

Ruth Aldine has posed:
If Ruth hadn't had a vast majority of her personality snatched, the scene would have started as such:

Ruth gets the call to meet with Mr. Summers.. or note.. or thoughts. Ruth would have at least spoken to someone about it and politely complained. She also would have been set on a paranoia-fueled eating fest within the kicthen, 3d Doritos? Glad you're back. Then she would have made her way to the offices, chin towards the sky, arms slack and feet dragging like a wayward teenager who's being told to do their chores or else they won't get to go outside.

Or maybe to some random house party where no teen should go..

But instead, everyone gets this.

Ruth arrives on time to Scott's balcony..

That's it.

Julio Richter has posed:
Julio was the one running late, of course, and as he came skidding around the corner, nearly bowled over Ruth as she arrived at the same time. Well, it /feels/ like a near miss, but in another sense, she was perfectly timed to avoid a collision. Funny how that works.

"Ay, lo siento," he blurts out, before recognizing her. "Ruth!" he says, skipping a real greeting and instead dropping his voice to hurriedly mutter, "Hey, did Scott call me here because I totally screwed up the assi--"

At that point, the teacher in question comes into view, and Julio clams up instantaneously. "Oh, hi Scott," he verbally swerves, eyes wide. "Or -- Mister Summers. Nice night."

It's not, really. There's an awkward checking-in-at-the-principal's-office silence as he waits to find out whether he's in trouble, failing a class, on X-men assignment, or at some point between.

Jean Grey has posed:
Given that two students have been asked to show up and discuss something... and that Jean is not a student, it's a fair bet that she's here in her official capacity as well.

She's arrived a little ahead of them, and is not sitting and reviewing papers (on the balcony?! Scott is taking some uncharacteristic RISKS in his life, today!), but rather just standing a bit off center from the doors inside, leaning on the railing and looking out at the grounds. So maybe she's just here to observe and advise in her more Headmistressly capacity. Or just get some air. Or have a chat with Scott after he's dealt with the student minutiae. The options are endless! Since it's quite chilly, she's in a weater, and has a cup of something steaming in her hands, keeping her toasty.

Once Julio and Ruth join them, she looks over with a smile. "Hello you two." Then a glance to Scott, who she seems happy to let continue on with what he has planned. She can't do all the work!

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott hesitates a second seeing both older students arrived at the same time. Julio is late, Ruth is early. Ah well, "good afternoon, good to see you. The new year has started and I am somewhat surprised to see you both enrolled as seniors again." Unvoiced: I expected better.

He walks closer to the table, inviting the two students to sit down. There are more mugs and a glass jar with hot chocolate. "Julio, I thought you are more than ready for a GED exam."

Ruth Aldine has posed:
"Hi. Yes." Ruth says in greeting to both of the teachers, though Julio gets a nudge that would interpret, yes. Whatever it was he's about to say, a resounding yes. Though would he know it? Probably not.

As they were invited to the table, Ruth hesitates, her head turning a little to listen to an unheard sound, and a slow walk forward to take the chair upon the left, in which she does not flop, she just sits.

With her acadamia in question, her nose wrinkles slightly then straightens, her throat clearing.

"Sorry." God, so bland! So.. so very bland! "I did not fail last.. pardon, yes. Last semester, did I?"

Julio Richter has posed:
"Hi, Jean -- didn't see you there," Julio says, flashing a quick, cautious smile. He follows Scott to the table and sits, slouching a bit more than Ruth and looking a little wary, even though this doesn't seem to be a problem meeting. There could still be an academic ambush awaiting him! He's on his guard!

"Oh, I just -- I thought I would graduate at the normal time," he ventures. "In May, right? Or -- 'graduate.'" He lifts his hands and ticks out single quote fingers. "I didn't think about finishing early. I guess it would be nice to be done with it, if you think I'm ready." Mostly he sounds like he hasn't even considered it, and is still a little cautious, as if expecting that ambush. "I would look kind of dumb if I tried it and failed, though."

He glances over his shoulder at Jean. She's psychic, she can probably check his brain for test scores, right?

Jean Grey has posed:
"Graduation is in May, that's right," Jean agrees from her balcony corner, focusing on Julio as he asks. "So no, you're more or less on schedule there, Julio. We don't usually graduate people ahead of schedule, since obviously, well, everyone here is a bit special and our education is about more than just your normal academics. But you might look into some advanced classes, as a possibility. You can earn some college credits ahead of time."

Then, she laughs, and looks back to the table. "Sorry, Scott, I didn't mean to but in-" She pushes lightly off the railing to amble a bit closer to the table where his papers flutter lightly against the breeze. "Just wanted to straighten out some of the details, it can be complicated. As for you Ruth-"

And here she casts another look toward Scott as if checking or deciding something, before turning to the younger woman. "Again, graduation's ahead so that's not set in stone but I think we both agree there's some room for improvement, isn't there?"

Scott Summers has posed:
"What? No, you didn't fail," replies Scott, looking at Ruth. "But I think you could have done much better," it was a string of Cs if he remembers correctly. "You are nineteen, highly intelligent and a telepath, what... failed?"

As for Julio. "You can graduate in May, Richter," or 'graduate'. "After what you saw and what happened last Spring, however. I hoped you wanted a more ambitious schedule. You showed remarkable initiative and I was impressed." And annoyed. But Scott is /much/ easier to annoy than to impress. "I thought you had more drive, and... as Jean said. College if you want. Or advanced training for the X-Men."

Ruth Aldine has posed:
Ruth was as still as a statue. One would consider her not breathing as she waits to hear the news of her purposely lackluster grades. It's true that she wasn't trying, keeping her head down and getting C's was just fine for her! But.. not them? Crap.

"Do not take the test." She says to Julio, and leaves it at that.

"Mr. Summers, sorry. It is true that I know the answers before hand, yes. Lessons, pardon." She clears her throat as she tries to put it in a simpler way, not that everyone present is.. well, dumb.

"Sorry, I do not see the benefit, yes, in the long run. Thank you." A little smile. Gone. A little fidget too! At the mention of Julio's prospects for college or the X-Men, Ruth turns halfway in his direction. Her hand soon rises to plant against the back of her chair to grip, then lets go to rest the crook of her elbow against it. This was going to be good.

Julio Richter has posed:
Julio slides down in his seat a little as Jean starts mentioning college credits. /There's/ the ambush. He serves himself some hot chocolate like a condemned man spilling a fortifying dram of something strong. "I, uh... Don't think college is an option, with my legal status being..." He glances from one teacher to the other, then over at Ruth, who is staring right back at him. (In a sense. An unsettling sense.) Unlikely that there are any secrets here. "...Not."

A fake ID to drive or get into bars is one thing. The full set of documents required to enroll at an accredited university is another. He can't access his pre-Xavier's transcripts without tipping off federal investigators in Mexico, and he has no American history going back beyond the previous year.

The X-men, on the other hand, don't seem to care much about that stuff. "Maybe advanced training would be a better idea," he says, a little worried that he might be giving the wrong multiple choice answer. "Legally."

Jean Grey has posed:
For a while, Jean looks like she's stuck considering something. Her gaze is briefly on the desk, maybe on some of the papers, but it doesn't really fix there. Similarly, when she looks back up in Ruth's direction, it is equally vague, perhaps as there's no real option to meet her gaze as she might otherwise. "I think it goes without saying that we're a special kind of school, Ruth. So we do expect unusual situations, and quite a few students have abilities or considerations that make it difficult to teach them in traditional ways. But that doesn't mean what we do is irrelevant. How you can do on a normal test is obviously sort of moot-"

"But being able to decipher an answer isn't the same thing as knowledge." And there's something in her voice that suggests a bit of a challenge, if the younger woman could claim otherwise. "And believe it or not, some of us -can- tell, and there's more ways to test a student than filling out a scantron. Now, if you need special instruction, that's something we can get into, figure out. But just faking it to make it? That's not going to serve you in the long run, so we're not going to sign off on it."

As for Julio, she seems a little less worried. "Maybe that's so, although it's somewhere we can pursue alternatives if you're really interested. It's not as if we don't have some friends in higher places. But regardless of attending any instiution beyond Xaviers, don't you think the coursework would be valuable, in and of itself?" And when he seems to want training instead, she falls back on the venerable meme: "Well, why not both?"

Scott Summers has posed:
"Here is Xavier's we believe in getting the best out of our students," adds Scott, for Ruth. "If you don't believe education will benefit you in the long run, we need to talk in deep about it." And she better bring in good arguments. Hrm.

Then he sighs. Glancing at Julio in mild disbelief.

Really? Is he more worried about being an illegal emigrant than being part of a clandestine mutant team most of the media and politicians call terrorists? "We can fix your legal situation," he offers. Well, Xavier could do it with his expensive lawyers. But Warren can help, he is sure. The X-Men have lawyers. One of them is Scott's own time-traveling son. Another one is a dragon. "We have pretty... deadly lawyers," he comments mildly.

Ruth Aldine has posed:
"You drink, yes. Why do you, sorry, care about legal stuff?" Ruth asks. It may have sounded innocent, -may- have. Especially since there was a smile that follows after. Then not. It takes a practiced slowness to turn and face forward, her own hand reaching out to grip the container of hot cocoa to pour her own self a glass. The chill was satisfying, yes. Hot cocoa would be great, yes. But once in her dorm or somewhere in the student gardens with MacTaggert, her ruana would be -so- much better.

Pulling the cup to herself, her chin lifts in Jean's direction. "Yes." She says to Jean. "Knowledge is only considered, sorry, when all parts of the subject is known, no.. yes." Her brows lower. "Being awake makes the answers come faster than sleeping. Being asleep, pardon yes, gives meaning to the answers." Code talk? Naw.

They were right, faking it just to make it really wasn't going to do her well at all, and she knows it. She almost feels like she was setting herself up for failure. Her shoulders slump at that tiny thought, and a little sip of her cocoa was taken.

Tastes like Midas had a chocolate touch.

"Talk deep. Okay." It would definitely get weird! But if they were up for it..

"They kill people." Ruth says, point blank. Turning her head slowly towards Julio, just to stare. And nod.

Julio Richter has posed:
"I think I'm ambitious," Julio mutters in his native Spanish, still sulking a little at Scott's dressing-down. "Accelerated classes, /in English/. X-men training. Dirt sorcery. /Saving the world/." Obviously, this is for an audience of himself only, or he'd translate and speak up.

When Ruth turns to him and makes her grave pronouncement, he shivers, in spite of the warm mug between his hands. "Yeah. I have," he answers, assuming 'they' is himself. "I'm trying not to so much anymore."

That's as good a segue as any as Scott addresses his situation head on. He squints over at the X-men leader skeptically. "I think it's a little beyond lawyers," he says. "I blasted a hole in a U.S. detention camp and a lot of people escaped," he reminds the teachers, who have probably been briefed on all this. "Not to mention blowing up a pretty big chunk of Guadalajara. That's two countries where I am wanted as a terrorist -- or something like one." All before his 20th birthday! If /that/ doesn't prove he's ambitious, what can?

"It's not just, oh no, Julio, ICE is after you," he concludes. "There's more to it than that."

Jean Grey has posed:
Jean may not make much more of Ruth's cryptic speech, but she doesn't seem discouraged on the topic. Nor lacking in her own conception of larger realms of knowledge. "It may well take teaching you in in a different medium," she begins to suggestion, and then smoothly continues the idea in thought, silent to the others but clear to Ruth, <"Like this, where you can feel and experience, not simply listen."> 'Feel and experience' is accompanied by, well, just that. Seemingly random, but expansive, a flash of millions of ideas, thoughts, images, some quite abstract.

And then she's speaking again. "I'm willing to work with you personally, if that's what it will take. But that has to be two-sided. You have to be committed to doing the work, to making the effort."

Julio's worries, at this point, seem to largely be HIS worries. Like Scott, she doesn't really seem all that hung up on it. "We may not be able to rehabilitate your real identity. But getting you one that would be enough to take classes? I think that's managable. And if it's what you want, we'll work to make it happen. But again, that means we need the committment on your side as well." She waves a hand. "Anyway, that's still a ways off. In the mean time, those courses would be a good start, wouldn't they? The training is probably something to cover separately, but everything I've seen recently of your power control has been promising."

Scott Summers has posed:
Lawyers, er... well, at least one of them does kill people. Enough to make Scott uncomfortable. This besides lawyering. But it is not the point!

A nod is giving to Jean about working more closely with Ruth. This kind of personal attention was usually done by the Professor, but he has been distancing himself from the school for the last couple years. Now it feels Ruth feel through the cracks. "It also feels sometimes you are directly projecting your thoughts into speech. It is sometimes hard to follow the line of reasoning."

"Julio, I am quite aware of what you did and why," otherwise he wouldn't be in the school! "And we can handle it. Guadalajara more easily, as you were just protecting yourself. But even the incident at the detention center is manageable. They didn't respect your rights and I am quite sure they will settle to avoid the negative publicity we could bring." And if not, some causes are worth a little telepathic pressure. "Or we could send Logan to negotiate," his smile is a little cold, even for the day.

Ruth Aldine has posed:
Ruth was all for continuing to creep Julio out, though the conversation took an interesting turn. It was clear that the way the new and possible learning situation presented itself (with Jean's voice in her mind) was intriguing, but it also was foreign. Her shoulders raise as if something had caught her hackles, causing her to turn to sit forward again. Once normal speech continued, her shoulders slowly fall and a nod is given.

A nod and a shake of her head, along with a few quick scratches at her eyebrow. It wasn't as if Jean had implanted the idea of building a rocket into her mind, but Ruth seemed oddly inspired to wash and deep condition her greasy hair..

"Sorry. Okay.." She said to Jean, her chin lowering now, not out of being scolded which she wasn't, but of pure thought.

She sips her cocoa again, then nods towards Scott. "Sorry. Fair." She admits. Cause the girl could -blurt-! But instead of turning to Julio to see his reaction to Scott's words, she stares off into Scott's direction, her face presenting as -clearly- weirded out because he .. smiled.

Julio Richter has posed:
"I never really thought about college," Julio answers Jean, seeming reluctant to tackle the topic, even now. "Like, what kind of degree would I take? What career would I need it for? The only job I've ever had is bartending." He shrugs. "It just seems like a lot of stuff to decide all at once." The idea that he would even get to continue high school was absurd less than a year ago. Saving the world with the X-men is, in some ways, a lot simpler than worrying about higher education.

He can't help but snort out a laugh at Scott's suggestion that they send Logan to the negotiating table. "That... that I might like to see," he admits. His own grin isn't frosty; there's an anarchic glee to it, just below the surface. He buries it in cocoa so as not to look /too/ criminal in front of the teachers.

"Also, if I did go to college, I'd have to leave the school. And..." he feels almost silly saying this, but does incline his head toward Ruth after a moment's consideration: "The lady did say not to take the test."

Jean Grey has posed:
Jean smiles to herself with just a *touch* of self-satisfaction when she seems to succeed in giving Ruth something to actually think about. Sometimes she gets to show off, OK?

"You don't have to decide anything now," she then tells Julio, navigating back and forth between the two very different situations. "Most people have no idea what they're doing with their lives when they start college, and many don't stick with their initial major, or find careers different from what they studied. As far as I'm concerned? The point is to continue learning because learning is admirable. To challenge yourself because easy things aren't really worth it."

"For now..." Jean's gaze flits back to Scott's papers. "I'd say its worth looking at the subjects you're best at, pick just a couple, and try some of the advanced classes I mentioned. It's still the first few days so changing your schedule isn't much of a concern. And even if you have no interest in leaving Xaviers," this seems to concede that, despite their best efforts, it might not work out, or be practical, "the coursework is still valuable. You never know when knowing something might be useful, right?"

After all of that, she looks up from Scott's papers to Scott himself, and gives him a warm smile. "I'm sure you've got this. Thanks for letting me poke my nose in. But I've got some of my own homework to handle," OH GOD SO MANY FORMS, "so I think I'll leave the rest to you."

Scott Summers has posed:
"You can take two years' worth of college credits without leaving Xavier's," offers Scott. To both younger mutants. "Kitty Pryde can help you picking which ones. And the test..." he looks at Ruth. "Ruth should try to explain that statement to you. It would be a good exercise of... mental clarity. Ultimately, you can do either way. Steep up your training will consume a good deal of time, at least the first four weeks. I wouldn't want you to stress yourself too far." He finishes his mug of chocolate. It was getting cold.

"I don't want either of you to slack either," he concludes. "See you later Jean," Scott glances at the vanishing redhead. "Now... I have a bunch of freshmen homework to grade. Painful work, but someone has to do it. We can talk in a week, hmm?"

Ruth Aldine has posed:
Thankfully, she doesn't have to decide tonight. Because there was a big rotweiler who needed walking, feeding, and bathing. So she was going to be pretty pre-occupied. The trouble with speaking to animals is, they never stop. Much like curious five year olds.

And.. to finally clarify. "The GED. Yes." She can be clear! Sometimes.

Though, there was a little question that hung in the air, that had Ruth turning to Scott. "Can I train for the X-Men?" It was a streeeetch! She was friends with Mystique after all!

But since the meeting has somewhat concluded, Ruth reaches over to take the entire container of hot chocolate for herself, hugging it against her chest. She was probably still feeling the effects of the telepathic speak, or was just incredibly greedy. She does consider Scott for a moment.. then gestures.

"A, 91. A+, 100, C, 76, F, 12, A+ 100, 89, B+. Thank you."

With a sharp nod, she turns and waddles to the door, near sloshing the cocoa all over her shirt.

Julio Richter has posed:
"Yeah, I'll take some time to think it over," Julio agrees. Honestly, moving from his current accelerated courseload to a normal schedule with more advanced material might make it /less/ of a challenge, but it'd be less stressful than trying to keep up with the additional coursework. More time for life, at the very least.

(What he hasn't realized yet is just how off-the-wall college coursework can be. It isn't necessarily just more difficult math. He could try to line up a practicum with Dr. Strange, an internship at the Future Foundation, or a study abroad on Magneto's orbiting asteroid. Someone will likely clue him in soon.)

He scoots his chair back to get out of Scott's hair, then stops and raises his eyebrows as Ruth offers Scott his students' final scores. "Mierda. 12 percent? Pretty harsh, Scott," he says, a lopsided grin sliding into place. As he departs, still holding the mug, he continues, "Now I just have to figure out whether taking the GED means I'll fail so horribly that my record will never recover, or stub my toe really badly." He starts walking a little faster. "Ruth! Hey, Ruth?"