|Eva (zapster) wrote in marvel_mashup,|
@ 2020-03-16 00:41:00
|Entry tags:||2017: 10 bd, 2020: 03, @snapped, silvercloud: eva, zale: nathaniel|
October 2017: Something Strange
| Autumnal wonderland was as accurate as any phrase to describe what the grounds of Xavier's was molded into each October. The faculty always went out of their way to ensure students got the most of their holidays there - especially the ones who had more difficulty leaving the grounds or celebrating with non-existent family. Thankfully, her own son (Mateo) wasn't one of those students. He had both parents and looked fairly 'normal' by homo sapiens standards. Let's call it... 'passing'.|
As much as Zap enjoyed the looks and smells of the transformed property, she always felt a pang of guilt and longing at the feeling that she'd missed out, or dropped the ball. Most of her adulthood had been spent in the thick of Xavier's goings-on. For the most part, now, she spent her time at the school on the weekends or in the evenings. The commute was only an hour, but sometimes the distance between her childhood home (and her actual child) and her work seemed lightyears.
There was music, laughter, creepy sounds, the odd screech of delight/terror, inflatables' engines, shouting, and many more noises floating through the twilit air. The sun was sinking and the mischief was rising. As the warmth began to leave Eva's cheeks when the light became eclipsed over an eave, she felt a smirk pull her lips into a knowing grin. The light display.
From behind her, the outside of the mansion became alit with oranges and greens, purples and blacklight black. She'd felt it coming in her bones. Literally and metaphorically. Dom had practically been projecting it audibly from his mind. 'IT'S TIME!' The Ghostbusters theme kicked in a little louder than the music had been for the end of the afternoon, and the mood elevated tenfold. Zap drew in a breath, smiled, then sighed out with contentment. She slowly turned on her heel to check the bounce house where Mateo had decided to make his home base. He was clinging to the inside of the roof, awaiting unsuspecting jumpers. She nodded to herself, accepting her reality, then began to stroll.
Oh, look. The indoor boy. She'd met him in passing only once before, but had heard more and more about him through Mateo's (sometimes) tall tales. Mr. Zale's son Brayden had become pals with her own son, it seemed. To her surprise, she'd spotted him outdoors - and it was as if he'd had a vampiric sense of when the sun was down and it was safe to emerge. Granted, he could have been on the bench he was occupying for the last half hour. Her feet had already redirected her stroll to his position. He'd clocked her too. He didn't look excited. Her eyes filled with troll-ish glee but her face remained even. The 'latin dancer' cleared her throat: "Trick or treat." She took handfuls of her dress and did two quick flourishes in a paso doble style then made a show of eyeing Nathaniel to assess his clothing choices. "What're you supposed to be?" she challenged with the devil in her brown eyes.
| Awkwardly perched? Nathaniel considered his position on the bench outside the walls of Xavier's School. His attempt to act natural and appear 'chill' (as Brayden had instructed) during the autumn activities had been folly. Nathaniel Zale did not blend, even at an outdoor celebration with which he seemed to 'vibe' so well. But it wasn't so much the setting as a large number of people who mingled on the grounds. The anti-social mutant had promised his son he'd partake, mostly for Brayden's sake. But like ever so many chaperones and designated drivers before him, Nathaniel found himself ditched.|
Oh, Brayden wasn't fair, he knew. The boy had some well-laid plans involving the bounce house and his newest friend Mateo. Which left Nate sidelined, awkwardly perched on a bench, being avoided by the bulk of Xavier's population... just as Nathaniel liked it.
Until his eyes darted left and noticed a brightly colored dress heading toward him, clearly a mistake, or a dancer looking for a bench to rest her tired feet. But certainly not someone... Oh. Nate recognized the top half of the Latin dancer quickly and realized there was no mistake. The extremely social Eva was heading toward him with the mission to engage and Nathaniel had little recourse but to answer. Unless... No. No quick escapes.
Zap greeted him with a festive, but he thought, loaded question and gestured toward him with her dress. Before she'd finished, Nate had stood, never really settled into the bench, and offered the paso dancer a curt bow. "I find you rarely get to chose," Nate said. He appeared taken off guard by her next question until he realized his lanyard with a badge was hidden under his sweater. Wearing jeans, a blue dress shirt, sweater, and his hair swooped to the side, Nate pulled his fake NYPD badge out and completed his Jake Peralta costume. Instead of answering her inquiry directly, Nate responded with a character catchphrase. "Cool, cool, cool, cool, no doubt, no doubt..." he said. "Had I realized the level of commitment here, I might have... gone bigger," he said and gestured to the decor. "But your dress is... lovely," he'd hesitated, to find the right work to address a co-worker with. Yes.
Screams erupted from the bounce house and Nate's attention was momentarily diverted by the children who fled. "He doesn't make friends easily," Nate said, a shorthand explanation for why he wasn't going to investigate and stop whatever Mateo and Brayden were doing.
| Eva nodded, "I'm always prepared for both," the mini-mogul told her much-taller counterpart. Tricks and treats. Always prepared. Always. "Ah, yes!" Her head bobbed in understanding and appreciation. "Detective..." she said in her best Holt voice. "It's from an event - I didn't think I'd be able to wear it again. It's the small victories," she mused distractedly after Nate's compliment. Ruckus.|
"I'm afraid I've provided you a nemesis. The Pontiac Bandit is probably only five years out." Mateo was three handfuls. As for Brayden: "I really appreciate him hanging out with Teo so often." The other boy was a bit older, but something about their personalities meshed comfortably enough. "They were quite the duo during the field trip last month. I noticed you weren't along for the ride." Avengers Tower was something most people want to at least get a peek inside of. It would have been a great excuse. "...busy lately?" the Native pushed.
| Impressed by both her declaration of readiness (which tracked with what he knew about her family) and her rather convincing Holt impression, Nate's guard lowered... slightly. "Yes," he said at her small victories pronouncement. "I have a caped little number I doubt I'll ever get to wear again," he said. His tone hopefully dry enough that Eva wouldn't be able to tell how serious he was or wasn't.|
"Mateo's a better child than most and his energy is good for Brayden," Nate said. His son had a fundamental darkness that the would-be sorcerer knew would become an issue one day, but hopefully Mateo's light would infect his own son.
"Hm, busy? Always," he said. Nathaniel fumbled a bit with his hands until he decided to keep them in his pockets. "And I'm not much for social or large gatherings. And the tower is very... new," he said. Nate dwelled in the decrepit, where every bit of dust had a story to tell. Eva was smiling, which wasn't abnormal, but the contrast between her bright red lips and her darker skin caused his eyes to linger. "Shiny and new. I prefer things with more history, like this mansion or a flashy dress made to Paso," he said. Then swallowed hard, having forgot himself for a moment. Her charm palpable - probably a direct response to the vacuum his lack of charm created. "But I hear it is nice."
| Capes. Eva didn't care what Edna Mode's opinion was. Capes were where it's at. His remark earned a smirk, even if he was joking.|
"Well..." she nearly muttered at the statement about her son. It was quite a compliment. "Thank you," Zap said sincerely.
"Really..." her eyes left Nate's form and she did a quick check on her son's whereabouts. There he was. She then continued her sarcastic train of thought: "I wouldn't have suspected." He was an anti-social moth of a person.
Paso? Oh, he knew his lingo! She grinned, despite herself. Ghostbusters wasn't exactly the best song choice to display her basic knowledge of the dance, but her eyebrows wriggled at him. Talk of the tower was behind her. Her troll inclinations had returned. "You have a really great frame for latin," Zap confided, eyeballing his musculoskeletal structure like it was one of her machines. "Unfortunately I wore these," her painted toes stuck out from under her dress, showing off her Under Armor slides. "Heels make it harder to herd." Or climb a tree. But that was Logan's department. "And they puncture bounce houses..." her lips pursed, sadly.
| Nathaniel understood when he was being teased, though Eva's brand didn't seem to bother him. Probably had something to do with the level of respect he held for the Latina entrepreneur and scientist. Or he was a sucker for a Spanish dancer... either-or.|
"Yes... you as well," Nate said in reaction to her comment about his frame. His reverse compliment didn't sound as genuine as it had in his own head. "Practical," Nate said toward Eva's shoes and nodded his agreement about the danger to inflatable things. "I brought a taser," Nathaniel offered since they'd reached the 'how our costumes could help/hurt the evening' portion of the conversation.
After his taser laugh line (which wasn't entirely a joke - he did have a taser) there was a natural lull in the conversation. Nathaniel's lack of social skills probably shone through when he couldn't immediately capitalize on that momentum. More happy screams thankfully cut the silence, this time from what appeared to be a Jack Skellington at the edge of the woods.
"David's enjoying himself," Nathaniel said, instantly aware of how boring that statement had been. Then panic set in, but why? He wondered, then realized he'd analyze it later. "We should paso... Not here. Sometime." Nate said, his mouth taking all control from his brain. "I'm not good at it, but I'd like to try..." he said sincerely. Next, Nathaniel sighed mostly out his long nose. "Title of my sex tape," he said with the smallest of smirks.
| That settled it - they had great framework. His standoffishness was waning. "I am a taser." Zap reminded the costumed cop, then gave him a small zip to the chest with the tip of her pinky from a few feet away. "But I always appreciate back up, detective." Had her posture stiffened? Oh yes, it had.|
Cackle! She turned at the noise and then grinned a skeleton grin before looking back to Nathaniel. There was glee in her eyes, brought on by the atmosphere (and a little bit the trolling). "Really?" Did he want to dance? She would have never assumed. Arguably, he looked like he had three left feet. "Su-" re.
Title. of. his. sex. tape.
Eva snorted, then gave him a few slow claps while her head was bowed close to her chest so she could regain her composure. "If you don't try, you'll never learn," she soothed sarcastically. But there was a little bit of sincerity peppered in because she was a nanny and a doter and it was one of the best nights of the year. And his 'framework' was just the right sort of imposing. "I'll hold you to it." Trying a paso doble.
| The self-inflicted shot to his pride was worth the reaction from Eva, her snort turned chortle forced a small, genuine smile to Nathaniel's lips. The grin quickly vanished by the time the Latina dancer promised to not let the man forget his words. "Good," he said, the spooky atmosphere around them notwithstanding, Nathaniel felt as though something new was in the air between them. Almost friendly, odd. He normally collected the misfits and broken toys to befriend. Eva would certainly be the most put together of them. This would take more study, as would the paso doble.|
"Anyway," Nate said, his excellent social skills kicking in just in time... "David blackmailed me into helping," he said and his neck craned in the last direction he'd heard the Pumpkin King from. "I'm supposed to report to Dom for my assignment," he said unable to imagine what his task might be. "It was," he paused, "nice chatting," Nate said, before making his polite exit. "Sorry, I'm uncomfortable with emotions," Nate said on his exit, as though that cleared everything up.