5720/Feast of Souls: Cost Risk Analysis

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Feast of Souls: Cost Risk Analysis
Date of Scene: 25 March 2021
Location: Scott's Office - Xavier's School
Synopsis: Plans are laid about protecting Xavier's.
Cast of Characters: Scott Summers, Illyana Rasputina

Scott Summers has posed:
Just a little while before Scott's first class begins and he's already at his desk going over his lesson plan for today. Some music plays in the background, a little Sound Garden, with a cup of coffee still steaming on the desk beside his propped up tablet. A stylus used to navigate the screen.

He's wearing his usual: A cardigan sweater over a white button up shirt with the collar undone. Slacks and dress shoes. His hair is a little longer than usual, however. Shaggy even. With his bangs curling over the lense of his ruby red glasses sitting snug against the sides of his eyes.

He is not expecting visitors.

But the door is still open.

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
Black Hole Sun, won't you come
And wash away the rain,
Black hole sun
Won't you come?
Won't you--

The flash-fire of reality bending to the whims of the Demon Queen could be flashy or completely subtle, though it always involves something. Submarine reflections dance upon the floor and walls in a heavily blue-shifted edge of the spectrum, adding to the ambient natural light. When Illyana steps through and banishes the portal a moment later, the lightshow abruptly ends. But possibly not before someone notices.

Dark jeans and a sweater slipping off her shoulder are disturbingly casual. She's even armed with some kind of book bag, printed with a mountain background. Though she is not a student (or /is/ she?!), a girl needs somewhere to stow stuff. Like demon snacks. Or just regular snacks with no nutritional value.

A look around and then she pokes her head through Scott's doors, knocking her knuckles lightly in a staccato burst against the door. "Boo."

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott's a pretty observant dude.

Heaven send
Hell away
No one sings
Like you

He barely catches the twist of reality beyond the open doorway. The dance of light upon the floor beyond is as good a harold to the Demon Queen as any band of Demons could be... Fiddle or no. He inclines his head at her Eldritchian greeting. "Illyana." Beckoning her with a wave of his hands holding to the stylus towards himself.

He hadn't been expecting her, but he doesn't seem at all surprised by how she arrives. It's a long day and a hard night that catches Scott of guard. "Everything okay?" Noting her backpack of many things.

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
I woke the same
As any other day
You know why
I should have stayed
in bed

No need for fiddling, for this isn't Georgia and Illyana would not prefer the environs of Atlanta any more than Novosibersk. The pale-haired Russian lingers for a moment on the threshold until permitted to pass it, ushered in by the general in a war no one seems to know is being fought. Well, save the current company.

The bag must weigh something but she gracefully slips the thing around to her back without any kind of difficulty. Her fingers hook into her back pockets, and she gives Scott an upnod that constitutes a hello in kind. "Da. No fires here. But I have been thinking about the students, their safety. You have time to hear me out?"

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott seems to know something is coming. That or he's always preparing for the possibility that something will.. either way, he's conducting a shadowy engagement that may never play out. Suffice that he's had more than one child come back from the future to inform them all that this world, or another, is destined for darker days ahead.

"Of course." He says this with a nod and a hand extending out to one of the cushioned chairs across his desk from where he's sitting. "There's some coffee if you want some." It's an odd revelation in a time like this, that he doesn't know whether Illyana even drinks coffee.

Hardly important, but a curious quandry.

"What did you have in mind?" Leaning back with his fingertips pressed together.

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
When isn't Scott expecting something? Who else has been prepared since adolescence for all the world throwing problems, and has considered strategies and angles for every solution? Perhaps that's why she stands here, now, an air of Arctic calm settled around her. Because temperamentally, it could be argued no one else under the banner of Charles Xavier's Motley Band of Mutantkind so resembles Illyana's own nature, even if Piotr has the Russian cultural touchstones and others have experienced a fairly equivalent horror show of experiences growing up.

She doesn't hesitate to enter, moving at that hunter's stalk to one of the chairs. She pulls it out, shifting the bag to sit at the back while she perches forward. Coffee is the right offering -- point.

She does drink it. She has also threatened death to anyone getting between her and the precious bog water. "Please." Manners, however, beat oooh, coffee vibes. The slender inclination of her head announces patience. If the coffee is nearby, a flick of her wrist can bring it to her without trying.

"Children have shelter here but current events demonstrate problems can arrive at any time." A brief nod to the window, though she never breaks eye contact, her habitual laconic nature forced to bend to necessity. At least getting to the point is a quick matter. "I would like to add a layer of unconventional security targeted against supernatural and magical entities. Useful to stop necromancers or more."

Scott Summers has posed:
There's a sound beneath the desk like a tiny, but fierce, tigar. MOAW he says and Scott cannot ignore.. Leaning over, he scoops up the kitten and sets him down on the desk so that he can pad across it to inspect Illyana while Scott stands to go pour her a cup of coffee.

"Do you take it with cream and sugar?" There's a right answer, of course. He just doesn't say what it is.

Hovering there while she decyphers both the kitten investigator of Catyclops detective agency and her decision on whether sugar and cream are an appropriate addition to a cup of coffee. "After the incident with Julio, I have to agree that a certain level of unconventional security is necessary. Shan is also working on something, I sent her to speak with you, after the book the pair of them found nearly burnt him to death."

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
The sorceress' lidded eyes catch far more than just the normal spectrum of light. She doesn't see in the dark in her mundane shape, but registers whole spectra humanity doesn't even know of or have words for. The kitten's emerging form receives a pointed look, measuring its aura and a host of other features to ensure it is not, in fact, some kind of small demon or a familiar.

Or she likes cats and cannot break role by nodding to the fuzzy, lean beast with a kittenish tummy that requires pets, oh yes it does. Hello happy tummy! Fingers absolutely are not wiggled, and neither does she directly regard the cat, as standoffish as it is. Now just wait until he's on her shoulder honking loudly for dinner.

"Nyet, just black, please." Again, proper manners count. She waits until he gathers his cup or one for her, and then settles. Catyclops deserves a corresponding finger curl. Come here, sweet creature. Piotr's cat is a tsar in Limbo, she knows what they need. Mraaaowr.

"I see." Burnt to death? "I may ask after the fire. It cannot harm me. A proper ward around the school will not interfere with students except very few. Ms. Gwynn and I mostly. Julio partly. Assistance from him, Ororo, and a few others would help anchor the ward with a unique element, more sympathetic to mutants. I /could/ seal us off entirely from the world's awareness but that is an extreme step. But it is there. We could have an aspect of the ward to conceal the school if triggered by specific conditions, but you would need to inform me what kind of conditions you want. My strategies would be very different from most."

Scott Summers has posed:
Whatever the right answer, Scott does not immediately throw Illyana from the office with jeers of how she has ruined a perfectly good cup of coffee with such trivial delights as cream or sugar. So he nods, pours her cup, and holds it out to her as he passes around the side of his desk to retake his seat behind it.

"His name is Scruffles." Scott must not have named him. Certainly the pair of them are as polar oposite as creature and human can be. Where Scott is a sentinel, Scruffles leaps right at Illyana's invitation and curls his tiny little tail around his tiny little back legs in her lap. As if to say, in no certain terms, you may shower me with affection now.

"I think that's a wise decision." Settling and taking his mug for a sip. His too seems black. "Is there a way we can set a ward that will conceal us completely, but set it to a trigger word should it become necessary as a defense later?"

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
Cream or sugar aren't needed. Black as hell. She drinks it no matter how it's prepared, but she likes her coffee like she prefers the void: soul-drinking. When lacking pieces of it... well, it suits! Mmm. Hot, scalding happiness murder.

"Scruffles," says the Demon Queen by introduction to the cat, her pupils springing open a little as eyes narrow. Is he daring to curl up? She benignly rests her hand upon the curve of the cat's head, scritching behind the ears, massaging a gentle circular pattern. That would be to the cat, not Scott. That kind of familiarity might blow the ceiling open and cause interminable damage, for he is not a cat. Yes, the imperial Russian deigns to scritch the minor lordling cat.

"Da. That would be an example. I mean to set up a ban, something that does not let someone enter. But to conceal us completely that hooks to a trigger phrase, like a word or an action, will require more specific preparation. It can be done. You can narrow it to a part of the school, too."

Scott Summers has posed:
"We often get visitors from the Avengers or SHIELD." Scott points out with a little frown, tapping his index fingers together after replacing his mug upon the desk beside his still open tablet. It's a thoughtful consideration, "I know very little about magic or how it works, but I from what little I know, everything is very specific. Outcomes and preparations required are formulaic, so I suppose it would be impossible leave much in the way of wiggle room in that regard."

He squints behind his glasses.

While Scruffles squints beneath the scritching of his head. Purr boxing a little and doing kitten things. Like pawing at a fold in Illyana's pants. Because it was there. And attempting to acost him.

Because he's a cat.

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
A nod answers the privilege of guests. Sipping her coffee with no regard whatsoever for the temperature, other than covered in icicles, she downs it through a steady sip that will eventually leave nothing left. It means she can listen to Scott and turn over his thoughts and concerns respectively. Lidded calm measures his reactions.

Pawing at her leg doesn't bother her. Neither will claws, though she can flatten Scruffles for a proper ruff scritch if he gets too playful. Tiny kitten claws are sharp as hell, but in that, they're both probably tolerant. "It is possible. Different ways, none foolproof, but overlapped they would be quite sufficient. And if someone wants in who is barred out, they can knock. Victor von Doom for example."

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott inclines his head in acknowledgement to the given information regarding magics different strokes. Still considering the tactical implications and potential hardships. "Quite a few magically inclined individuals are cropping up recently... Von Doom for instance." Motioning away from the steeple of his fingers expressively, then returning them to their previous position.

"I see the advantage of the ward, certainly. With so many such individuals in the world, we really should be ahead of any potential hardships their existance may cause for us, specifically.. Not to mention the growing sentiment of hatred that has cropped back up after so many years dorment." He's nodding again.

While Scruffles continues to paw at the crease. Not aggressively, so much as consistently. He is nothing if not consistent.

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
Magical tactics are probably best understood by very few, and the blonde sorceress is one of them. A sound grasp applies all the same. "Da." She nods. "A concerning number of people want to master magic along with their other abilities. It is costly to learn both." Her shoulders lift in a shrug, brutally measured for effect. A fingertip catches the collar of her sweater and slides it back up. "Magic is a very long study. To practice it means forsaking one's other abilities. Control, for example. To use Ororo as an example. Her bloodline gives her sensitivity. To study magic to enhance that will diminish her control over her mutation, her finesse with it. Everything has a cost."

A warning? Perhaps, but then, her tone is neutral. "Warding can be modified after the fact. The hate we see after Bushwick..." Her grim smirk says everything, lips dark as night, that lipstick extraordinarily resilient. "Hate breeds violence. Sooner or later, someone will try to hurt us. They will come where no one has before. Children should not cower in their rooms or hide in the basement while we fight on a defensive footing. It is most unfortunate we have to think this way, but we do."

Her fingers buried in Scruffles' fur are gentle, seeking tender spots to scritch. His jaw needs some focus, and there's a precision applied just to make that purring motor get even louder. As long as he seems to want pets, anyway. "I do not intend to speak to many about the ward. Only those who need to participate."

Scott Summers has posed:
"I couldn't agree more. I feel certain that the more individuals who are practicing the arcane here, the more it draws unwanted attention, as well. From denizens such as from limbo who might be drawn to it, by those who aren't prepared enough to protect themselves." Scott doesn't know that much, but he knows enough to know he doesn't know enough. And that it's dangerous in the hands of those who, like him, have no apptitude, and in the hands of the foolish.

Some of which go hand in hand.

He gives another brisk nod.

"I'll let Jean know, but aside from that... there's really no one else that would be hugely affected anyways. So I'll leave that to your disgression. Suffice that I would like to have some form of safeguard should we actually have to initiate the wards to full effect. I don't like leaving things to chance.. and while I may not understand it, I definitely want to plan for it."

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
"Limbo is the least of your problems." That sharp, direct response isn't meant to cut, but blunt statement of fact from Illyana carries the weight of a wrecking ball. She doesn't usually deal in absolutes except when she does. "Humans can find trouble in magic without dabbling in other realms. This you know, you are clearer sighted than most. Give power of any kind to the wrong person, it will be used in a warped fashion." Her hands spread slightly. "Magic can involve petitioning dark entities. Even the best souls can be damned by channelling it. Remember." A dim, dark word hovering there tilts towards doom, her pause not for dramatic effect. Shadowed eyes lift, pupils lost, the faint sheen of roiling fire enveloping her irises. "The most noble can fall. The wisest choose badly and bear the corruption. I have watched it too many times to guide a student by the hand into it. Some here are pursuing it. They do not countenance the cost, and they will not hear me when I caution them. Perhaps you need to tell them the risk is too high. They are adults, they will do what they must, but /I/ am foresworn to stop them if they fall. And I will, as I have in the past. But I do not want to pull someone's heart out of their chest because their soul is gone and they think petitioning one of the dark gods is worth the price."

Her shadow is blacker than night, painted over the floor. But only that. Hard words. Hard truths.

"Jean should know, da. I will tell you this: if anyone ever risks the students en masse, I may have to pull the whole school briefly into Limbo to shelter it. A last ditch, but if the choice is losing a hundred people or telling them to mind the roses, I would rather worry about the roses."

Scott Summers has posed:
"It was only a for instance, but your point is well received." Scott nods to that, reaching out to sip his coffee with a pulled expression as it begins to cool. Not displeased, not in the slightest. Coffee is different based on temperature. It brings out different flavors, some of them better than others based on the coffee bean and preparation. Scott knows coffee.

It is, as with everything he focuses on, well studied.

"We can no more stop students from exploring magic than their own mutations. If you wish to prevent their fall, and I can understand fully your lack of hesitation in putting down a rabid dog, perhaps you should guide them. Those who cannot be swayed... they can be strong allies." Motioning off his mug, "Wanda, for instance."

Though it is ultimately up to her.

"But again, your point is well received." Regarding magic, at least.

Pulling the school into Limbo? He inclines his head with a gentle tsk' of his teeth. "If you feel it is something you need to do."

Illyana Rasputina has posed:
As far as Illyana is concerned, coffee is magic as long as it isn't in a puddle the temperature of rain. Though all given, she'd still drink it. Hardship taught her to discount the concerns about flavour, the signature effects of different beans, brews, and additives all #firstworldproblems or #mydimensionisn'tatwar benefits.

She is, if nothing else, attentive. "Wanda Maximoff requires guidance?" Somehow she sounds surprised by that. Still.

She inclines her head slightly. But the moment passes. "Into Limbo is an extreme effort to preserve lives. I will consider it for no other reason. But to demonstrate, a plethora of options. We are better served teaching students the risks around them, avoiding them, and how to respond to any threats, violence or dangerous situations, da? Better to have knowledge in acting than jump to extremes without consideration."

Scott Summers has posed:
"No, she hardly requires guidance, but she's a student from the school who dabbled in magic to no small success." Scott says with a hand turned up in a simulation of a shrug, "There could be others, that through the proper tutilage, would be beneficial assets to the world, the school, and yourself. That was my point about Wanda."

Scott has had a very different upbringing than most. Most of his hashtag first world problems were developed later in his years because the formative were spent in foster homes run by a psychopath.

It leaves its scars.

Besides, he makes a good living and has very few things to spend that money on... So he treats himself!

"I agree. I always have.. that is specifically our purpose here. Teach students the dangers, show them how to live in a world where they exist, and how to defend themselves with the gifts they've been given. Some of those individuals have been given magic..." Again his hand turns over, "Where I don't understand it, I'm certainly not blind to it."