|ᴇʀɪᴋ (metalize) wrote in valloic,|
@ 2020-09-27 10:19:00
|Entry tags:||!action/thread/log, marvel: erik lehnsherr, the raven cycle: noah czerny|
WHO: Erik & Noah
WHAT: NOAH IS THE BIRTHDAY BOY, he gets a birthday beer
WHERE: The Crossed Quills
WHEN: Today, after metalworking lessons
|It was probably a rite of passage, to visit a rowdy bar, pub, or tavern (whichever was available) when one reached legal drinking age - of course, Erik had his first drink when he was a teenager, still all lanky and a mess of uncoordinated limbs. He hadn’t been eating well either, at that time - but in that instance, he really didn’t recall doing much of anything for his eighteenth birthday. Why would he, when life was simply one hardship after another - he’d only very recently come into his own regarding his powers too, and he would continue working on them as time went on. Now he was far past that, but he had a student of metalworking (art, to be specific) who had reached an important milestone and while Erik was sure that Noah had plans with his friends later, he still invited the youngin’ out for a beer after they finished their lesson anyway.|
Often, Erik went to The Crossed Quills once he was done with work. It was a good place to wind down - very loud, certainly, but that was part of the appeal. Pint glasses, a jangle of voices, at least one person slumped on the bar and others arguing or crying in corners - the ale was good, and surely they had other drinks too, but he did have a fondness for beer, especially a good, dark local beer. Noah could pick whatever he liked.
“How about you find us a table and I’ll get us something?” he offered, once they walked in to join all the hubbub. “Anything you want.”
Noah had had drinks before, but usually at the Barns and with his friends. So the idea of going out with Erik was somewhat exciting. Mostly cause he didn’t think that he’d ever be cool enough to hang out with him outside of metalwork stuff. But it was hard not to mention his birthday when it was the first time in a long time that he was going to actually age. Technically, he was 18 and 25, which was more to do with the weirdness of being a ghost for nearly 8 years by the end of it.
He nodded at Erik’s words. “Um.” He glanced at the menu briefly before shrugging. “Anything’s fine, but probably not too bitter.” He looked around, making his way toward a table and sitting down. It was easy enough to find a seat and he didn’t really know what the options were or what they’d taste like. Maybe it was something he’d figure out with time. Persephone favored mixed drinks that involved vodka, so he knew mostly about that. It was at least bound to be better than anything they’d have gotten when he was at Aglionby.
Nothing too bitter, then. Erik could handle that - it was a good starting point, at any rate. He went up to the bar and ordered two beers - chocolate stout, to be exact. Noah seemed to like sweet things over most any other flavor profile, and chocolate and beer was a combo that had caught the attention of brewmasters for a long, long time. The kind he ordered consisted of roasted malt with cocoa; it was rich with sharp chocolate and vanilla accents, but didn’t really skimp on the alcohol content either.
The mugs were set down at the table Noah found, Erik settling across from him. “Well, happy birthday,” he lifted one of those mugs in a toast. “Feel any different now, at age eighteen?” There was also that whole ghost idea to contend with but it seemed simpler to focus on the here and now, and focus on doing all the things one could do while actually alive.
Noah did appreciate sweet things. He missed the outings his sisters and him used to have. Some things he remembered clearly and other things were hazy at best. It was weird what stuck with him over the years and what didn’t. He remembered everything about his friends so clearly. He remembered his death clearly. He remembered stealing his mother’s peach schnapps. He’d made Blue apologize to her for it. It hadn’t been great, but it was easy enough to steal alcohol from his parents or for someone else they were hanging out to do it.
He smiled a little when Erik sat down, quietly taking one of the mugs for himself. “Not really? I mean, I don’t think you ever feel different until you see pictures of yourself super young and then you’re like, ‘Wow, I’m old’. You know? I feel different than I did when I was alive and seventeen, but not different from dead and seventeen.” A pause. “Except for being able to eat and not having to convince my friends that I’m uncomfortable with eating in front of people to keep them from trying to get me to eat when they were just ignoring the number of times I told them I was dead.” A shrug. “They thought I was kidding.” And that was a lot of rambling.
Looking sheepish, he took a sip of his beer and tried not to over focus on the weird rambling. “It’s good,” he said after a moment. “Thanks…”
“Of course. Glad you like it,” Erik huffed out a little laugh, soft and quiet but the amusement was present, because he was used to the rambling by now. It was one of Noah’s fun little quirks - but he was a good kid (young man? Though Erik still thought of him as a kid, for the most part) and doing really well with metalwork. Here he thought he’d fail at teaching, but he was glad he gave it a chance. Besides the fact that it seemed to tickle Brigitte for some reason, he found that it was actually fulfilling and he was - making a difference?
In a contrasting way than when he’d tried it in the past, when it came to being the leader and liberator his people needed - it had dug under his skin, that Raven rose up as some kind of hero and he’d been knocked down into the role of ‘terrorist,’ (he’d had plenty of time to think about it in solitary confinement) but that was long ago and times had changed.
He lifted his own mug to his lips, taking a drink and appreciating the flavor - it was different, almost decadent somehow, and not like anything he’d ever had before. “And as someone who actually is old, I know what you mean,” he added. Though he definitely didn’t look his age, so he had genetics to thank for that. Perhaps he just aged slower than most. “I never did much for any birthday. It’s nice to have a cake though. I hope you’ll at least have that?”
If not, they may need to make a stop someplace. Or he’d just ask for one of the cinnamon rolls from the tavern here - he had them for breakfast when he wanted to indulge occasionally, they were fantastic.
Noah was determined to do well and work hard and even if he sometimes didn’t get something right or the way that he wanted to, he didn’t really mind that. It was occasionally frustrating, but it was something to work towards. If he’d been unable to deal with not doing things well, he definitely wouldn’t have joined the swim team. Maybe it wasn’t that difficult, but the amount of training that went into it was really up there. He was considering taking it up again. Not the team part so much, but at least swimming regularly. Something to physically get out all the things he didn’t know how else to deal with that weren’t as easily fixed with glitter or balloons filled with paint.
“You’re not that old. Like...parent old, but not like probably has grandkids old.” At least he didn’t look ‘probably has grandkids’ old, but Noah hadn’t actually asked about his age. “My sisters used to make a big deal out of it. Wake me up early and everything. Mom always made a cake. I’m pretty sure there will be cake tonight. We’ve gone all out for everyone else, so it’s basically the same. I hope there’s glitter. But like maybe not on the cake unless it's edible.” He shrugged slightly. “I’ll just be happy to have people there. You could probably come if you want to. For the cake.” He was pretty sure they couldn’t eat it all on their own. Probably.
Parent old, but not like grandkids old. That made Erik laugh, genuinely, and the smile on his face made him look younger anyway - it was one of those toothy grins, and he didn’t always show his teeth when he let a smile slip through. A smile that actually reached the depths of cool blue eyes.
In all honesty, he was probably old enough to have grandkids - but that would require actually knowing about any older children he’d sired and he didn’t think he had. Probably.
“Actually, I am a parent, so I suppose that makes sense,” he pointed out. “Or, well - a different version of me had a child with Rogue, who is here. I’ve been getting involved.” He took another drink, ruminating about that - about Anka Irene, about Nina, and he debated whether or not to say anything. But then again, he thought that perhaps he was at the point where talking about Nina and Magda felt good, rather than painful. Or at least, it didn’t hurt as much because he could focus on the happy times that were still locked away in his heart, his memories. “...I had another daughter too. Nina. When I was married, and living in a small village in Poland. She was wonderful as well. I don’t think I’ve done a lot of good things in my life, but fatherhood - it’s one of the few.”
But anyway. He cleared his throat next. “You’re inviting me for cake?” That tickled Erik too, and his smile softened. “Are you sure your friends won’t mind?”
Noah smiled a little at the sound of Erik’s laugh. He liked that he’d made him laugh. It was at least something positive. “Oh! That’s nice. Probably a little confusing, but it sounds nice anyway.” He hadn’t been around too many actual kids since he was one. Though, he guessed he might still be one to someone. “Nina.” He smiled again. “I don’t have kids. Thankfully. But that’s mostly cause I’m like...eighteen.” He hadn’t really thought about kids before. “But I think I was kind of a handful of a kid. Before I died. I feel bad for that.” But his family and sisters still seemed to love him anyway. “I drove my car really fast and jumped on tables and once I stole my mom’s peach schnapp’s.” He shrugged.
There was a quick nod at Erik’s question. “It’s my birthday, so I don’t think they can be mad about it. I’m pretty sure it’s the one day that I can get away with anything...only I can still sort of always get away with things because I was dead once. I don’t use it as much as I threaten to.”
“I think everyone was a handful, when they were a kid - it’s part of being a kid,” Erik assured, with another light laugh. “I’d be a bit concerned if you weren’t.” After all, nobody was perfect, nor did they behave perfectly at that age - driving fast, pilfering alcohol, that was all par the course.
His own rebellion was admittedly a little different - but he never had a ‘normal’ upbringing. Peach schnapps fell under the umbrella of ‘normal,’ and it was what he wished for any kid who was in the middle of figuring themselves out.
He took another drink, the chocolate stout going down easy. Like some kind of hoppy espresso milkshake, it was bizarre yet oddly good. “Then I’ll stop by for cake. I appreciate the invite.” It was nice of Noah, though he wouldn’t want to interrupt anything so he wouldn’t stay long.
“But you’re right, they should celebrate you on your birthday - you only turn eighteen once, right?”
“Probably, yeah. Sometimes I remember what it’s like to be that way. But…” He glanced down, taking a sip of his beer instead. He didn’t really want to talk about Whelk on his birthday. “I’m technically also twenty-five.” It wasn’t what he’d thought, but it wasn’t untrue, so it fit with his thoughts. He was also technically twenty-five. “I’m pretty sure most people are concerned about kids being quite so loud.” He shrugged. “But I like to think I was at least entertaining.”
He lit up a little when Erik agreed to come for cake. “Good! Cause I didn’t want to have to look sad to get you to come, but I might have. Maybe.” Probably not. He wouldn’t want to push someone to do something they didn’t want to. Even if it was just cause he didn’t want to intrude.
“I mean. Probably? Unless there’s something I don’t know about? I don’t think it happens more than once. Though, time is more of a circle than a line, so I guess it depends on how you look at it.”
Oh no, not the looking sad. Usually Erik was impervious to that sort of thing - iron will, iron bars around his heart, iron everything - but with Noah it’d probably be a little different. He was quite likable and very kind - and Erik respected that sort of thing, even if he didn’t understand it. Not as if he was looking to hurt anyone here (he hadn’t been wanting to hurt anyone in awhile, it was just that trouble usually found him instead, sometimes literally dropping on his doorstep) but he wasn’t exactly known for being warm and fuzzy.
Except around Anka Irene, probably, but that wasn’t for everyone’s eyes.
“Time is certainly a circle,” he agreed. “And - it often feels like history repeats itself.” People didn’t learn from their mistakes, were blind to their faults, and so forth. It was disappointing. “Do you feel as if you’re getting to do everything you want to do here?” he asked, and he hoped so. He’d continue metalworking lessons for as long as Noah wanted, anyway.
Noah considered his question for a moment. “I guess? I’m...working up to...being able to skateboard again.” He tapped his fingers on the table, needing something to do with them. “I’ve been - well, I was - with my own skateboard.” Which wasn’t exactly the first time he’d mentioned his own death, but it was harder out loud than it was to type it and that was still hard even with the meetings. “But I want to be...I want it to be something I take back. I’ve been looking at skateboards, but I haven’t gotten one yet. There’s a few really cool ones, though!”
He smiled a little before, “Also been thinking about a mountain bike? Like so I have something that I can ride around in the forest. But maybe another bike would be better. I’m not sure.” He shrugged slightly. “And maybe get back into swimming. But for fun instead of competition. It could be fun.”
Those all sounded like good goals to Erik, good things to want. A lot of life in Vallo was quite frustrating - for example, you couldn’t really predict who would come and who would leave (one of his biggest fears was just vanishing one day, leaving Anka Irene and Rogue like multiple other versions of him had done before, and the fact that it was out of his control was frustrating). Sometimes dinosaurs literally crashed through a waypoint, and disrupted city life.
Other times you just - formed these connections with people and knew you were doomed, because they were so decent and being around them was like being bathed in sunshine, just a little, but you also knew that if they disappeared it would be devastating. Erik tried to prevent that, as if he was preparing for the inevitable fallout, but here he was. Attached to more than a few people, who wormed their way past his defenses.
“I think being comfortable with skateboards again is a good thing,” he said, with a surprising amount of warmth to his tone. This was obviously important to Noah, so. “It has to come when you’re ready of course, but if you feel like you are - then it’s something to work on. And it goes without saying, but you’re welcome in Genosha at any time.”
Casually, he sipped his beer, draining the mug. “There’s good swimming there. It’s a beautiful island, though I may be biased.”
Noah was not someone that stopped himself from friendships. He was, perhaps, a bit more cautious than he used to be, but he preferred to err on the side of trust rather than distrust. He’d tried his best to be good and happy and believe in everyone. If it backfired, then it backfired. He was pretty sure Ronan would drip acid on people just by talking to them and make them regret anything too bad.
“Yeah. I saw a longboard I liked. It was really cool.” The bottom was a skeleton with a rose crown and the top was just the roses. He liked some of the skateboards that had zombie patterns, but now he wasn’t sure that would be appreciated with more of them around. He’d look at some of the others. There was one with cat-shaped waves. That one was cute, but he would definitely be teased about it. There were also nice floral designs. He’d figure it out eventually.
“You mean it?” His eyes lit up. He didn’t know what it was or where it was or where it came from, but it sounded nice if the swimming was nice. And Erik was nice to let him use something that belonged to him just so he could go swimming.
“Of course - it’s an island that I built up back home. It’s not very high-tech, residents were just living off the land, but it was meant to be a safe haven for those like me,” Erik explained, hands wrapping around the empty mug. “However, here - I don’t mind sharing it with others.”
In a sense, weren’t all Outlanders like him anyway? Most had abilities they’d acquired somehow or were born with, but beyond that. They were brought here against their will, now stuck, unable to leave until whatever powers-that-be decided otherwise (or the magic shorted out - he didn’t know how it worked, admittedly, and it didn’t seem like anyone else did either). It was something to think about.
He nodded toward Noah’s mug. “You want another?”
He listened as Erik explained the island. People like him. Noah studied him for a moment. “Like more people that can bend metal and stuff?” Cause Noah had noticed little things. It was hard not to and he didn’t mind. He thought it was pretty cool. He didn’t have any powers. Most of his friends did, but he wasn’t upset about it. It was probably hard to have them and to have people know and have people want you to use them for something. Matthew was probably the only one without powers. Unless you counted always having snacks as an ability. It was probably close enough to one. “That’s nice of you to let people use it and stuff. I’ll probably use an indoor pool once it starts getting more cold, but I’ll use the island until then.”
Glancing down at his mug, he considered it for a moment. “Maybe not now, but we could do this another time. I don’t really drink a lot, so I don’t want to overdo it before I even get to my party.” Though, he didn’t think two drinks would do him in. Probably. But just in case.
“Sort of - there are some people at home who have something called the x-gene. It grants extra powers, similar to bending metal,” Erik clarified. “Only it’s been - difficult, for those with this gene, to obtain rights or even avoid being persecuted by humans at all. After a lot of turmoil, the government gave me Genosha - perhaps so I’d finally shut up,” he smiled wryly at that. “But it ended up working out alright.”
At the moment, it did - after Jean’s sacrifice, he wasn’t sure where everyone would go from there. Raven was dead and Charles had run off with his tail between his legs - Erik would surely keep trying to get him to travel to Genosha for a rest and respite, but who knew if his stubborn old friend would listen.
Anyway. If Noah wasn’t going to have another drink, then Erik wouldn’t either. “We can do this again sometime,” he agreed. “It’s nice to have a cold beer after working hard in the forge. But again, happy birthday - I hope the rest of the day is all you want it to be.”
Noah nodded at the explanation. He thought it was sad that people with special powers couldn’t get rights. If that was the case back home, none of his friends would have been okay and that made him feel sad to think about. “I’m sorry they were like that. Just about all of my friends have abilities or some tie to magic. I don’t really. I mean, I guess dying on the ley line made me a ghost, but…” He shrugged. It wasn’t really the same thing.
He smiled brightly at the mention of doing this again sometime. “It’ll be fun! And this can be a new way to try things since coming back.” He’d done a lot of it with foods and he had tried new things in general, but he hadn’t tried too much by way of beer or alcohol. So he thought maybe it could be fun to do. Especially with a new friend. He was pretty sure they were friends now.
“I think it’ll be pretty great. I’ll let you know when to come for cake. Thanks again.”