|şçąŗɭęţ (witchiest) wrote in avengers_logs,|
@ 2018-11-05 13:54:00
|Peter looked uncertainly at the mess on the kitchen counters. Never before had it graced so many raw food ingredients. There was chicken, tortillas, sauces, cheese ... his oven was pre-baked (and the fact it was even on was amazing) and there was Wanda, effortlessly going through it all.|
"Y'know, growing up on a literal spaceship, I never had a chance to cook." He picked up a package of tortillas and brought it up to his nose, trying to sniff through the plastic. "All we had really were our replicators or the conventional. Like a microwave but way cooler," he said by way of explanation. "Yondu thought time on land was useless, and he would push the ship as far as he could so fresh stuff? Not happening. New food? As if. Hell, I can't remember the amount of times he forgot he had to feed me and sent me to bed with a glass of Tongo milk and thought he'd done his duty." Peter shook his head and smiled ruefully. "So I really appreciate this, Wanda. It'd be nice to now how to do something for myself. I'm kinda tired of takeout."
The fact that Peter was trying to sniff tortillas through plastic was amusing - he really didn't know how to cook at all, did he? It made Wanda smile to herself, but she supposed the lack of knowledge made sense. Things seemed very different while traveling amongst the stars. "Of course, I am happy to help," she nodded, turning on the saute pan and adding a little bit of oil. "These are very easy and they last awhile. Well. Hopefully." With the appetites of Peter and someone like Drax the Destroyer she wasn't so sure about that but they'd make a big pan and see how it went.
"First we will cook the chicken. Season it with salt and pepper and then add to this pan, so it will brown nicely on one side. We will add the rest of the spices when we turn the chicken over. What's tongo milk?" she asked, lifting an eyebrow - though she also understood what it was like going to bed hungry. Her and Pietro hadn't ate very well when they were on their own, even if Wanda did her best to cook and her very fast twin brother would steal what they needed from the markets.
"It's this substance that is like milk, but not really. It lasts forever and in theory has all the nutrients a growing boy could ever want. Guess some Ravager discovered it by accident, and since space pirates don't like to spend money, whatever is cheapest and keeps things going is the best. " Or so Yondu always said. Peter felt otherwise but still. "It tastes like thick nothing, really. Pretty sure the only reason it kept me full was because I didn't want seconds." He grinned a bit. "Course, now I go overboard with stuff, and I'm feeling it a bit." He poked himself in the stomach and laughed. " Sure felt that battle afterwards! Don't know when's the last time I actually had to do that shit, which is weird because for a period of time, I was kicking ass and taking names all the fucking time. I mean, I was Star-Lord, known throughout the galaxy as its Guardian. That's some pretty damn big shoes to leave alone."
"That battle was a whole other...what is the phrase? Bag of worms?" Wanda guessed - she did not know all of the American idioms, but had certainly picked up on her share after taking up residence in the country. "I think we all felt it afterward. It was unlike anything I have ever faced. But do not worry, you still look pleasing to the eye."
Peter was handsome, and she didn't think he gave off the appearance he was hitting the junk food too hard. Though regardless, it was best he start eating a little more healthy anyway. Just because it was important to take care of one's self.
"Season your chicken," she continued, handing over the cumin, garlic powder, and Mexican spice blend. "Then remove it to cool. Add the onion and garlic to the pan. We are going to cook it with the chicken drippings." Mmm!
Following orders, he tentatively sprinkled the seasonings onto the meat. The smell was instant and he found himself breaking out in a grin. "Whoa, this is cool! My mom, bless her soul, wasn't the best cook either. We spent a lot of time at my grandfather's house, letting him cool. She made some pretty damn good breakfasts though..." Losing himself slightly in the memory, he smiled softly as he stirred the meat. At her cue, he removed the meat and added the already chopping onions and garlic. "Who taught you to cook? Is this something you always knew or did you have to learn painfully like I am?" That was a joke -- Wanda was patient, calm and logical. It was strange to see the same traits that Gamora had (has?) in a different way. With Gamora, there was always this undercurrent of danger, something volatile just simmering under the surface. Even though he'd seen first hand how dangerous Wanda could be, he didn't get that same sense from her.
He was doing well - and she too grinned when Peter exclaimed about the fragrance of the cooking meat, and how lovely the kitchen was beginning to smell. That was always Wanda’s favorite part of cooking.
“Now we shred the chicken - just pull it apart, you will like that part. There is no wrong way to do it.” Plus, it was kind of fun to go ‘wild’ with two forks and rip into the meat - if you had some stress to take out on something, anyway; she suspected that all of them still did. “Once it is shredded, put it back into the pan with the tomatoes, the corn and the chiles.” Everything was already nicely seeded and chopped - that had been done before, with the fragrant chiles. While wearing gloves. “One trick is to dust all of this with flour, just a little, so it will help set,” she explained, giving the contents of the pan that light dusting.
Now she would answer his question. “My mother mainly taught me to cook, when I was a girl,” she said. “But Pietro and I were very young when the bomb went off in our kitchen - after that, it was difficult to cook since we were on our own. But I managed. He was no good for it anyway, so mostly he’d just do the shopping for us.” A chuckle at that - right, ‘shopping.’ Also known as stealing, but that was implied.
“We must use the microwave now, but not too much - just put the tortillas in for about thirty seconds so they will soften.”
Allowing Wanda to do the rest, he leaned on the counter, his arms crossed in front of him. Microwaves were his jam. This he could do with his eyes closed. "Whaddaya mean a bomb went off in your kitchen?" He was still so ignorant of all things Earth. He had no idea of the constant wars, or the fighting that happened across the planet, even though he'd been part of many a space battle. "And who's Pietro?" From the way she was talking, it was safe to assume that was her brother, but he still wanted to ask. "It sounds like you've had one helluva life."
The microwave beeped and he reached in, carefully handling the warm package. Laying it on the counter, he peeked over her shoulder at the chicken. He never would have thought in a million years you could do this to chicken. He'd only ever had it baked, dry, or in McNugget form.
One helluva life was a way to put it. Wanda smiled wryly - it was true, she was no stranger to loss and heartbreak. “Pietro is my twin brother,” she said, and couldn’t bring herself to say was, couldn’t refer to him in the past tense. That old, familiar ache flared up - she missed him so much, all the time. It didn’t help that she never really got to grieve for him either - instead she was just moving from crisis to crisis, like how Avengers do.
“We were ten when a mortar shell hit our apartment building during a family dinner. The blast killed our parents but only trapped me and him. We waited for help to come, but it did not - not for awhile.” Sometimes in her sleep she could still hear the sound of bricks and dust, the shouts of neighbors. She'd been so young at the time, too young to understand what happened, and she supposed she understood no better now.
War did not make sense.
Focusing on meal prep, she drizzled some enchilada sauce (it was canned - no need to make things complicated) on the tortillas, and then had Peter stuff them with filling. “Sprinkle cheese on top when you’re done, and we’ll bake in the oven for fifteen minutes,” she instructed.
"Holy shit," was all Peter had to say about the war. That sounded horrible and terrible and what the fuck do you even say? Nothing. That's what. Instead, he followed her instructions, happy to listen to the lilt of her voice. Once the enchiladas were in the oven, he hopped up on the counter and leaned his head back against the cupboard.
"How come we never talked before?" He'd bumped into her a few times, more because they clearly ran in the same circles, but this was their first time actually hanging out. "I know I tend to annoy people, which is why I kind of keep to myself, but you don't seem to be annoyed." This was also a strange thing. The first time Peter had had friends, he was in his 30s; he was very much still learning how to carry himself in social situations. Which reminded him...
"Oh crap, I forgot to offer you anything to drink!" Hopping down, he headed to the fridge and scanned its contents. "We got beer...wine...pop....anything?"
"I...do not know," Wanda replied, with a sheepish smile. She had helped fix Peter’s ship, but she guessed that didn’t really count as talking. Or ‘hanging out.’ They were in a tense situation which wasn’t the best time to get to know someone. “But I don’t really get annoyed easily anyway.” She’d been studying meditation with Stephen, and that helped focus her thoughts and center her - it also meant keeping her calm, which was good considering the powder keg her psionic abilities tended to be. “Most people are afraid of me, and yet you do not seem to be afraid,” was her counterpoint.
Now that the enchiladas were baking, she busied herself with tidying up a little. The offer of a drink was nice. “Pop?” she repeated, because the term was unfamiliar to her at first. It then occurred to her that he meant something fizzy and carbonated. “Oh, that - yes, I will have some of that. Thank you.”
Taking a beer for himself, and a Coke for her, he handed it to her before realizing he should help clean up. There were dishes and ingredients to put away, so he decided to do that as well. "Why would I be afraid of you? I mean, you have some wicked cool powers. That thing on my ship was hella neat." He put a hand to the back of his head and smiled sheepishly. "I was kinda rude to you then I think. Sorry about that. I was under a lot of pressure and all...."
Wanda popped open her Coke, giving a bit of a shrug. "We were all under a lot of pressure. Apology accepted," she said. She didn't really mind, and certainly didn't expect sunshine and rainbows during times of duress - besides, she was good friends with Dr. Strange, who was the very definition of 'prickly.' Even more so than her.
"My powers are...threatening to some," she added. "And because I did not make the best decisions in the past. But I am trying to atone for them now."
Because those who judged and mistrusted her never made a bad decision, right? People were so small-minded sometimes, but she just let them be. There were always bigger fish to fry.
"At least you have powers," he said, pointing his beer towards her. "I have to rely on my brain and body...which I guess makes things pretty damn cool in the end." Peter gave her a wink. "And we've all made shitty decisions. It's part of life. You fuck up, you move on, you apologize, you get forgiven. Rinse, later, repeat. Whatever. Just gotta make sure the end game is what matters -- but not just, like, for you right. For everyone." He frowned. "I mean, Thanos thinks he's doing the right thing but just him. I highly doubt the rest of the universe agrees with him."
"No, I do not believe in making decisions to 'live my best life' that cause strife for innocents," Wanda agreed. There was definitely a difference. "Thanos does what he thinks is right and hurts people. When I do what is right, I mean to help people." Sometimes, due to how erratic her powers had been, she did end up hurting others. But she'd gotten that under control - she trusted herself more and those that mattered, they trusted her too. It had been a long journey, ending up where she was now.
The ding of the timer went off, and she slipped on a pot holder to remove the pan of enchiladas from the oven. "What do you think?" she asked excitedly. "Don't they smell delicious?"
They smelled ridiculously delicious. Peter's mouth almost instantly started to water and he regretted the fact that he had some semblance of manners and couldn't just dig in right away. "Holy shit, your boyfriend must be a super lucky guy," he blurted out, enjoying the amazing aroma. "And probably fat, because if you cook like this all the time, how the hell could anyone stop eating around you?"
"I do not have a boyfriend," Wanda's answer was amused, as she plated a couple of the enchiladas for them to try out right now; she thought it was accurate, anyway. There was Bucky - whom she was going to Transylvania with soon, but she wasn't certain where they stood. Usually going on a vacation with someone meant you were more than friends, especially if you were sharing a room - which he had not objected to. She supposed she'd see once they got there.
And even if he was her boyfriend, he would never get fat despite her stuffing him with delectable meals. It was that super soldier serum. Something many would envy, especially if they liked to eat (and she definitely did - she was already looking forward to the fresh, homemade treats which awaited them in Romania).
"But I'm glad you approve. Poftă bună," she added. "That means 'good eating' or 'bon appétit' in my language."
"Yeah?" He tried the words out but couldn't get the sound right. "Poofta bunny?" He cracked a laugh. "I'll stick with English." Rummaging in a drawer, he took out a few forks. Why bother dirty plates when they could eat right out of the tray? Besides, it wasn't like Drax was picky either, he'd eat the leftovers happily. Taking a large forkful of the steaming dish, he blew on it but couldn't wait. Even though it was intensely hot (and he had to blow air out of his mouth while trying not to chew with his mouth open), it was unbelievably delicious. "This is amazing," he said, repeating himself a few times. "Anytime you feel the urge to cook, come over, okay? We're friends, and my door is open to my friends all the time. Thanks, Wanda."
She couldn't help it - Wanda started giggling at Peter's attempted pronunciation of poftă bună. "Close enough," she waved it off, and oh - well, she'd give up on her quest for plates then, if they could just eat right out of the pan. "You're welcome, Peter. I love to cook, so I'll keep that in mind."
It made her feel good, that she could do something so nice and wholesome for someone else - nothing that involved her abilities, or scarlet tendrils that seemed to put everyone else on edge, just a hearty meal for people who...really couldn't cook, but not to worry. She'd written the recipe down on an index card and would leave it right here for her space friend.