Welcome to a city full of infinite darkness and delights. The cultures a bit different here whether you're walking on four legs or are shooting lasers from your eyes. Whether you're an unsuspecting human or a thing beyond scientific explanation there is much to explore! Step into our world of creative desires and ideas!
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"Oh really, I'm sorry. But I'll make sure you have a room to put your own things in someday," Mary promised Alik, her hand rubbing up against her collar, knowing that someday wouldn't be soon enough. This was her first time out of the house and depending on how much Kelly told Requiem she knew she might not get another chance at being trusted to leave again for a while.
Mary shoveled out a handful of Fruitloops with one of the scooping items in the jar, swallowing the handful whole. "I heard there's no difference between Applejacks and Fruitloops. Do you think that's true, I don't have any taste buds to try for myself." While Mary and Requiem didn't seem to share many physical traits with one another, their random conversation starters had to be hereditary.
Her head turned when she heard Sivik, a smile instantly bursting to her lips at his voice, "Sivik!" Mary shouted to him gleefully, at the sight of him, despite the fact that he was threatening to scoop Alik's eyeball out. However against all expectations she kept her promise, not moving from Kelly's side, but it was clear she was restraining herself from rushing over to her best friend. "You're going to have to let Alik go, Kelly's the one that allowed me to come here and probably never again after this... Plus even if he left I'd still have the collar and only Requiem can take that off."
Normally Mary was able to keep herself completely composed, by her fingers were tapping against her pant leg, clearly wanting to run over to hug Sivik already. On one side she knew the chances of Kelly letting her talk to Sivik were low and even more low now that he was threatening Alik. But on the other side she didn't want to ask for a hunters permission to go over to Sivik in front of Sivik.
Kelly seemed mildly surprised at Mary’s question, but he shrugged and unenthusiastically responded, “I guess they do taste similar.” He seemed about to ask her something, probably concerning the whole taste buds thing, but interrupted himself at the other mutant’s voice.
The proxy turned, face already wrinkled in disgust as he laid eyes on Sivik. He didn’t seem at all concerned for Alik, simply crossing his arms and fixing him with a steady, almost disappointed, glare for getting himself caught so easily.
The aerokinetic’s expression was a mix of offense and not-so-subtle panic as he carefully tried to pull the other mutant’s hand away from his face, silently debating the pros and cons of attempting to throw him out the door with his powers.
Sivik either didn’t notice or didn’t care, his eyes focused solely on Mary as she spoke. At her words he visibly hesitated, then immediately let go of Alik and bounded over to embrace her. “It’s so good to see you,” he mumbled.
“Oh thank God,” the familiar exclaimed as he was let go, supporting his weight on the table for a brief second before turning back to face the rice krispies with determination. He was not about to be cheated out of food just because of a little near-blinding.
“Alright, that’s enough,” the proxy protested, taking a step forward as if to separate Sivik and Mary, but reluctantly backing off at the murderous look the mutant shot him. He warily eyed the spoon still clutched in the mutant’s hand, resisting the urge to reach for his knife since no one was actually being attacked...anymore. He looked to Alik for help, but the familiar was sat on a counter slowly biting into a rice krispy and glaring at him mutinously which, yeah okay, even he could admit was deserved.
Sivik pulled back from the hug, keeping his hands planted gently on Mary’s shoulders as he examined her for any sign of injury. He frowned a bit at the collar, sure she should’ve been able to get it off herself by now, but not wanting to risk voicing that particular concern in case she was playing along for something. “Have they been feeding you alright?” he asked instead, worriedly following that up with, “Did you already see Skylar? Do you need to see Skylar?”
"I'm not as free as I look," Mary promised Sivik, hearing the disappointment in his tone that she hadn't tried to greet him. She moved into Sivik immediately embracing him tightly. She was used to seeing him everyday, but since waking up at Requiem's house everything felt distorted, it was weird to fall asleep without fifty sentient plushies cuddled up against her. Hearing Kelly tell her to break off the hug she hesitated, but was glad that the hunter backed down to Sivik's stare and smiled up at her best friend, "Yeah, honestly a little too much food, also nothing is from a box or can, so that's weird," She trailed off for a moment before hugging him once more, "I've missed you and I'm sorry I wasn't strong enough to escape." She moved back again, but smiled, still holding onto his hands. "I don't want to say good-bye to you, but I think I have to. You know where the house is though, so you can visit, but right now I can't really leave on my own anywhere."
When Mary pulled back again, Sivik seemed to be searching her eyes for any sign that she was lying about the collar. Seeing nothing, he quickly shook his head at her apologies and said, “It’s okay! We can figure out a way to break the collar, and with Phantom and Tara’s help you don’t have to go anywhere with him.”
“Uh, yeah, that’s not happening,” the proxy interjected, unsheathing his knife conspicuously. “He may be in a bad mood right now, but I brought him for a reason,” he added, gesturing with the tip of the blade towards his familiar.
There was a faint crumbling sound as Alik opened another rice crispy, completely ignoring the interaction.
Something predatory flickered in Sivik’s eyes as he edged in front of Mary, his grip tightening on the spoon still held in his hand.
The proxy sighed, mumbling something incoherently as he reached into his jacket. “I also brought this, although I wasn’t planning on using it unless I needed to,” he stated, revealing the tracker/shocker for Mary’s collar, marked with a piece of clear scotch tape to differentiate it from Alik’s. “You know, I was told to shock Mary if she tried to contact her organization. Considering I haven’t so much as threatened it until now, I’d expect a little more gratitude,” Kelly commented, examining the device like it was a particularly interesting trinket and glaring at the mutant out of the corner of his eye.
Sivik clearly deflated at that, no longer looking like he was about to pounce and much more like he wished he had Mary’s powers so he could throw the hunter through the wall and steal the contraption. He was confident the MDO could overpower Kelly, and Alik if need be, but he wouldn’t risk it if it meant Mary getting hurt.
He glanced at his friend, then crossed his arms and stared stubbornly at Kelly. “Then I’m coming with you. I’m not ready to say bye.”
"You're too kind-" Mary had begun to say to Sivik, but didn't finish when Kelly interrupted. Instead she followed where Kelly was pointing his knife to, turning to look at Alik who seemed to be vigorously tearing into a more rice krispy's. Slowly looking back at Kelly she had a confused expression that seemed to say, is-that-the-threat-you're-going-with? Not that Alik wasn't powerful, but visibly Kelly's knife was more threatening than Alik.
Hearing the proxy mention that he brought something else she quickly pulled Sivik backwards, at first certain it would be a drainer gun. Instead she felt a massive weight on her heart, recognizing the device in his hands. Her gaze shot to the floor, an out of place move given that her sight used to be everything to her. "I'm grateful Kelly," Mary promised him with a rare look of shame in her eyes as she started to retreat back to the proxies side like he wanted, but spun back around immediately at Sivik's comment. "You can't come," She said with far too much urgency in her tone to pass off as being an overreaction. She hadn't wanted to tell Sivik that her dad was making her train as a hunter let alone tell him that anyone was making her do anything. But at the same time he deserved to know, there would be no other opportunities to tell him than in this moment.
"Kelly and I are going on a hunt and I don't want you to have to hunt like I do. I want my best friend, but I don't want you to be my familiar. If Requiem knew he might try and catch you for me and I'd hate myself if that happened. I might be caught, but you're clever. Everyone loves smart people, but they hate clever people because their as dangerous as they come, able to topple empires. So if you want to help use that clever brain of yours because I'm not able to flawlessly protect you like I used to."
Sivik faltered at Mary’s plea, a look of betrayal flashing across his face. He opened his mouth to reply, but Kelly cut him off.
“You shouldn’t manipulate your friends like that, Mary,” the proxy reproached, his voice laden with cold amusement. “If he wants to tag along...” he trailed off, replacing his knife and detaching a free collar from a small pouch at his hip. “Let him tag along.”
Alik glanced up at the tone, snack forgotten as he studied the others cautiously.
The blue-haired mutant ignored the comment entirely, still staring determinedly at Mary. “Who’s supposed to protect you?” he retorted, frustration bleeding into his tone the more he saw how she acted around the hunter. “Just because you’re a hunter or whatever now doesn’t mean that they won’t stab you in the back, or shock you, or leave you behind, or—” He interrupted that train of thought, forcing himself to take a deep breath. “I won’t just sit back and watch them take you again,” he insisted, trying to make her understand.
Kelly stared at him, clearly unimpressed, then raised the collar almost questioningly. “You’re not really saying no,” he pointed out, his tone indicating he’d already gotten bored at the lack of response.
“I'm not putting on a collar. But I can help. Willingly,” Sivik snapped at him, watching in silent satisfaction as the proxy stared blankly and slowly replaced the collar. His eyes shifted back to Mary as he waited apprehensively for her response.
Mary gave Sivik a look that could silence an entire room, dangerous by appearance alone, but calm enough to send shivers down a spine. Doubling down on order she knew had to happen was a deep seeded instinct that came from little forethought. If playing the bad guy meant keeping Sivik safe she would take any hurt look he gave her... Okay maybe she would give in quicker than she wanted to admit. If Sivik was in her place she would have done the same for him, never leaving his side after failing to save him. For a moment she thought her glare did silence her friend after a pause, but realized it was because Kelly had spoken up.
This time her gaze turned to Kelly with an annoyed, but surrendered expression. In any normal scenario she would just use a table to shut Kelly up. Tables were humans number one weakness, in her experience no one responded calmly to having a table bolted to the ground tossed at them. Now she was pretty certain she wouldn't be able to throw even a folding table without him dodging it first. Now Kelly was, like it or not, her superior. In fact even if he wasn't proxy he was still her mentor that she was specifically told to listen to. However when he pulled out the collar her eyes flicked from the device back to Sivik, hoping that this wasn't one of those moments where a brain short circuited and made a bad decision.
"The Mutant Destruction Organization doesn't willingly wear collars, Kelly," She answered for Sivik with an even tone.
Mary's gaze softened at Sivik's argument, her hand tracing over top the back of her elbow at the mention of her being a hunter. "I mean, I have the law to protect me if I ever feel like using that card." It wasn't like she hadn't thought about it or threatened Requiem that she could easily tell the police that he kidnapped her. But she had decided it was just a good last resort, until she knew where Requiem stashed her powers. Any quick move on her part could mean never seeing it again. So "playing house" with them as a hunter was the better option for what she wanted.
Her head shot back to Kelly and retorted back the same time as Sivik, "He's not wearing the collar." She turned back to Sivik with uncertainty before finally nodding, "I'll trust your judgment Sivik, it's just that, you're my friend too, I don't want to see you in danger either. You don't have to prove your friendship to me by putting yourself in harms way. If you are going to though just make sure you have your normal defenses and then I guess I can share my lunch with you. Like I said, it's too much to eat so I could use a helping hand," She said, her smile always had a way of looking like it was reserved for the person before her alone. She looked back at Kelly, "Can I sit in the back with Sivik, technically I'm not the legal height and/ or weight limit to sit up front anyways sooo, y'know, it just makes sense to."
“Thank you,” Sivik said, his tone relieved and just as sincere as the smile he shot her in return. “I promise I’ll be careful.”
Kelly watched the interaction silently, a detached, almost curious look in his eyes until Mary asked if they could sit in the back seat. He was uncharacteristically quiet for another long moment. “If I can have your word—both of you—that you won’t try anything,” he eventually answered, directing his comment at Mary. He wouldn’t go so far as to say he trusted her more, but he knew through experience that she usually followed her own set of rules.
Sivik hesitated, but with a glance at Mary, nodded in agreeance. He turned to grab his stuff off the table, but stopped when Kelly called his name.
“I’m letting you come along because you’re useful, but if you interfere in any way, I won’t hesitate to kill you,” the proxy warned, still in that detached manner of his. It was beginning to unnerve Sivik, but he brushed the feeling off and rolled his eyes in response.
“I refuse to be intimidated by someone who bleeds all over libraries out of spite. Still, I’ll be sure to keep that in mind.” With that, he grabbed some of his things (leaving his spoon behind) and turned back to the others, arching an eyebrow at the older hunter. “So when are we leaving?”
Alik took that as his cue and quietly slipped off the counter, sidestepping towards the refrigerator and grabbing a couple bottles of water. He heard a sigh from Kelly as the man noticed, followed by, “We have water in the car.”
“But not cold,” the familiar pointed out, his retort lacking it’s usual annoyance. Instead he looked somewhat perturbed, his mind elsewhere.
Another sigh. “Fine. We’re leaving now,” Kelly answered, motioning for the others to exit in front of him before following.
One the way out, Sivik caught Alik’s attention. “Sorry for the whole threatening-to-gouge-out-your-eye-thing, by the way.”
Alik glared at him briefly, then shrugged. “Just don’t do it again. Please,” he added warily.
Mary listened to Kelly before leaning up on her toes, holding up her pinkie finger to him, "I promise, besides, if I mess this up and decide not to mentor me then I'm stuck with Requiem teaching me. So believe me, I don't want to get on your nerves, I'm stuck with Requiem enough as is, this is my only vacation. Plus you gave me some freedom in letting me visit back here and bringing Sivik along. I at the very least owe you my best behavior, so thank-you," She smiled before moving back over to Alik and Sivik.
Right when Mary left Kelly's side he got a face time call from Requiem, likely wanting to actually see that Kelly and Mary were okay and not in danger.
"When I was in my dads office I got bored an made these" She said holding out a couple of barbed wire rings made out of paperclips to them, "If you want them. Although I'd be careful, I scratched myself really close to my eye wearing this," She laughed sheepishly, tracing her finger over the scratch beside her eye.
Kelly hesitated, then rolled his eyes and joined his pinkie with Mary’s. “Don’t mention it,” he replied in a deadpan. He watched as she joined the others, his eyes lingering warily on Sivik, before the buzzing of his phone startled him out of his thoughts. He fished the device out of his pocket, fighting the urge to groan as his friend’s face—or rather, mask—popped up on his screen. He was not ready to explain why he and Mary were in the latter’s base, let alone that one of her friends was now joining them. Especially within the hearing range of said friend.
He glanced at the others to ensure they were still close, pausing to wave away Mary’s ring offer, and clicked accept. He habitually turned his body away from the group, but kept them in his peripherals as he answered, “Hey Req. What’s up?” It was clear from the little window displaying his face that the proxy looked stressed, but more in an irritated manner than ‘We're in danger.’
Sivik cast him a curious glance, unabashedly listening in as he plucked one of the rings from Mary’s hand. “These are really cool!” he told her, examining the pattern as if he was looking to recreate them before slipping one on his index finger. He discreetly checked the cut on her face, but averted his eyes when he determined it wasn’t anything to worry about.
Alik looked at the rings as if they were some sort of venomous snake, but eventually gave in and grabbed one, too. “They are,” he agreed, sliding it onto his ring finger and flexing his hand to make sure he wasn’t going to be stabbed by it whenever he did. Seeming satisfied, he flashed her a small smile in thanks and glanced impatiently at the proxy. As wonderful as the factory had seemed in the beginning, Alik didn’t want to stick around as long as Phantom was lurking somewhere (everywhere?).
Sivik seemed to pick up on his discomfort, directing a glance at Mary and saying, “You think if we keep walking he’ll follow? Or would he get mad?”
Kelly cast him a glare and made a shooing gesture at all of them to walk, keeping the majority of his attention focused on the call as he did the same, being sure to keep Sivik out of the frame until he got a chance to explain.
"Hey Kels, just calling for proof of life that my daughters still alive is all... And y'know, just wanted to ask if she's doing okay, is staying hydrated. That she hasn't died and you're debating on how to tell me the truth or if it's better to hide the body. Just normal concerns," Requiem said casually before seeming to take in Kelly's surroundings, "Are you guys in a building instead of out hunting? Did she get scared?"
Mary smiled back at Alik, she had hoped to be able to befriend him, but it was hard when all the hunters made them do before was fight in the warehouse and then again at the hunters base. She turned back at to Sivik, noting his comment as she looked back to Kelly, only now realizing he had slowed and was on a call with her dad. Mary walked ahead some more so that Sivik's voice at least wouldn't carry easily over into Kelly's conversation. "I've been okay though, besides taking away electronics I can leave the house with people. I still don't feel right after getting my powers taken away, but the dizziness has stopped at least. It's why he felt I was ready to hunt, but I still just want to be back here. At least I got what I need to work remote so the business can stay up. Plus I get to go on an adventure with you now. I just hope we're taking down some serial killer and not some normal dude born a werewolf."
“Mary’s...fine,” Kelly responded, too distracted by the quiet conversation ahead of him to realize right away how ominous his pause was. When he did, he blinked, then sighed. “She’s fine—we’re fine. We took a little detour, though, against my better judgement,” he explained, angling the camera at another wandering group of plushies. “Long story short, we’re at her headquarters. Leaving now, actually.”
He pointed the camera back at himself, bracing himself for the questions he was sure his friend would have.
Sivik internally seethed at the limitations Mary had listed, but he was glad to hear she had some freedom, at least. He hoped it meant he could visit her often after this hunt, especially if he stuck to his promise and didn’t get in the way. Although the idea that they could be hunting someone just for being supernatural didn’t sit right with him. “Or another mutant,” he couldn’t help but add unhappily. “But if it’s your first hunt they probably want things to go smoothly as possible. I doubt they’d try and pit you against someone who hasn’t done anything wrong,” he explained, taking on a more optimistic tone. “Right, Alik?”
Alik glanced at them, clearly about to disagree before he saw the hopeful looks on their faces. “Uh...Yeah. For sure,” he responded not-at-all convincingly.
The blue-haired mutant seemed to accept it easily enough, shifting the collection of things he’d grabbed from the table into one arm as he dug in his pocket for his phone. As he did so, a small fuzzy head popped up from the folded hoodie.
The familiar stared at it. “There’s a stuffed animal in your hoodie,” he said.
Sivik followed his gaze, then looked back at Alik. “Well, duh. There’s one in yours, too,” he pointed out, glancing at his phone while Alik panicked. He handed his phone to Mary excitedly, the photo album open to a video of the stuffed polar bear she’d given him. “Here, Seven-Eleven is actually a cat and this is the proof,” he told her, leaning over to tap ‘play’ and watching as the plushy tried—and failed—to jump across a gap that was undeniably way too large for said plushy to clear.
Alik paused in his frantic searching to repeat, “Seven-Eleven?”
Sivik motioned for him to check the actual hood part of his hoodie before nodding. “I was going to name her ‘Slushie’, but Phantom thought that was stupid, so ‘Slushie’ became ‘Slurpee’, and then ‘cause I didn’t like that I decided to go with ‘Seven-Eleven’ to spite him. By the way, Mary, you can keep that for now if you want,” he added, nodding towards his phone as he placed Seven-Eleven on his head.
The aerokinetic stared at him in disbelief, probably wondering if this was actually the same guy who threatened his eye with a spoon, before slowly reaching back to his hoodie to fish out a small, powder blue elephant plushie. His eyes brightened immediately, his attention now completely stolen by the little creature. “I remember you!”
"Kelly," Requiem said sternly, but almost with slight desperation to what kind of horrifying truth his friend might be hiding. However he let out a sight of relief when Kelly confirmed things were alright. "I mean, we always take detours," Requiem said reassuringly. After all, he knew he was asking a lot of Kelly and Mary to go hunting together, even if there were some mistakes it was nice of both of them to feel pressured to willingly try. However as he finished speaking he fell silent seeing the plushies moving around. "Kelly why?" Was all he struggled to ask for the first moment before seeming to regain whatever strength he needed.
"I guess I'm more surprised that you actually went along with it, are you two getting along then? Because I have to say, now that she's unable to throw furniture at us she does seem nicer," He said thoughtfully before realizing something, "Wait, did you run into any MDO's? Do we have a human shield thanks to her, does that work?" he mused.
Mary glanced away from Alik at his response, even if she was human nothing about who she was changed. She wasn't going to kill an innocent supernatural, in fact the sooner she messed up being a hunter the quicker Requiem would hopefully give up making her one. Although she did need to hold onto being a hunter trainee long enough to have access to the hunter base to grab her power back. Even owning their base, Requiem could easily snatch wherever he stored her power before she could grab it. Everything relied on timing now.
Her concerned expression brightened immediately when Sivik moved closer to show her the video, "Seven-Eleven's a great name, especially with the backstory behind it," Mary smirked, "Can't believe Phantom's so particular, I guess it makes sense, him and Tara are sort of creators, they gotta name things way more than we ever do. Also Alik, you should take the little guy home, nothing Kelly can do once it's away from here." Sneaking one more glance back at Kelly she moved her hands up to her bow unfolding it just slightly to remove a small dollhouse charm from it, handing it to Alik, "This will keep your plushy alive even if you go past our "sensors." Who knows, maybe Kelly will surprise us and like it too. He's full of surprises today."
Kelly patiently waited for Requiem to finish asking questions, keeping an eye on the group in front of him in the meantime. “I wouldn’t go so far as to say ‘getting along,’ but she’s certainly been on her best behavior,” he remarked. It’s manipulative, his brain pointed out, but he brushed it off for now. “And yeah, pretty sure we ran into all of them. For the most part they didn’t give us any trouble—they listened when Mary told them to back off—but…” he trailed off with a sigh. “We do have a temporary addition to the party. He...insisted. On a related note, I’d watch what you say. I’m honestly not sure how well he can hear this,” he warned, glancing up at the blue-haired mutant in time to see his self-satisfied smirk. “Actually, I think he can hear everything,” he amended, his expression souring along with his tone.
Sivik turned fully back to Mary, ignoring the annoyed proxy behind them as his smirk shifted into a more genuine grin. “That must be it. Still, I don’t think Phantom hates the name nearly as much as he pretends to,” he declared. He watched silently as Mary retrieved a dollhouse charm, instinctively lagging behind her to shield the action from Kelly in case he decided to pitch a fit.
Alik tracked the charm curiously, letting it fall into his open palm as he listened to Mary. “I can really take him home?” he wondered aloud hopefully.
“She wouldn’t have given you the charm if you couldn’t,” Sivik pointed out, twisting his wrist to draw the aerokinetic’s gaze to his own charm attached to a thin silver bracelet. Seven-Eleven started squirming to get out of the folds of the hoodie, and he quickly lifted her and put her on his head, habitually scritching under her chin in the process.
The familiar watched the interaction as if he were studying for a test, then glanced back at the blue elephant in his arms. He wondered if he should follow suit, but the plushie seemed content where he was, so he just relaxed his hold and kept walking, a small smile etched onto his face. “Thank you.”
The entrance quickly came into view of the group, and Alik found himself glancing around warily for any signs of Phantom.
Sivik paused at the door, looking to Mary and then at Kelly before ultimately deciding to just open the door without waiting for the latter to give his approval. He held it for Mary and Alik, then just a fraction of a second longer before letting it go, intentionally letting go before the hunter could walk through.
The proxy shot him a glare and caught the door before the others could be obscured from view, but otherwise didn't comment on it.
"That's a lot for you to deal with, I'll get in the car and meet you there. And I don't mind if Sivik's listening in, I don't really have anything personal to say. I am sorry you had to go to her base though. I guess it's no surprise, Cherub told me that she was asking Mary about who her crush was and she said Sivik, must really miss him," Requiem said passively before quickly adding, "Anyways, I should hurry up and meet you, seeyah there!" He said, hanging up without giving Sivik anymore context to determine how fake or true his statement was.
"Of course, Alik," Mary said with a friendly smile. She turned around when she could tell Sivik hadn't timed closing the door right, noticing it slam shut on Kelly. Mary grinned at Sivik tugging his arm loosely, "C'mon, he let you come and everything, without making you wear a collar. He's a hunter, so you can't ask for much more than that from him." She turned to Alik once they got to the car, "Hey Alik, is it okay if Sivik and I sit in the back? Or I guess I could maybe fit in the middle if you also want to sit with us. We're pretty used to limousines to be honest so the lack of space is different."
“You know, I don’t think that’s…” the proxy gave up hallway through his statement as Requiem powered on, staring blankly at his screen as the call abruptly ended. He stared for a moment longer, then flipped his phone off and shoved it back in his pocket. He glanced up at the others, only to do a small double take when he saw the plushie in Alik’s arms.
“When did you—” he cut himself off, blinking and then shaking his head. “Nevermind. Everyone in the car. I don’t care who sits next to who as long as Alik isn’t directly behind me,” he warned, eyes narrowing at the familiar, who had been known to excessively ‘accidentally’ kick his seat.
The aerokinetic ignored him entirely, a thoughtful expression on his face as he considered Mary’s offer. It soon became obvious he was drawing out his decision to mess with Kelly, further evidenced by Sivik’s muffled snort when he realized.
“I’ll sit in the front,” he finally declared at the same time Kelly grabbed the back of his hoodie and began dragging him to the passenger’s seat. “Good choice,” the proxy growled, waiting to confirm Alik was fully in the car before slamming the door shut. He walked around the front to the driver’s side, pulling his keys from his pocket and fixing the remaining mutants with an impatient stare.
Sivik waved him off, then paused midway through the car door sporting an amused expression. “You should consider teaching Requiem how to lie convincingly, by the way. Might come in handy in the future,” he commented offhandedly, before promptly ducking into the car as if it might cover up the sound of the proxy’s exasperated sigh.
He waited for Mary to join him, and then for Kelly to get in and start the car before reluctantly relaying what he’d overheard from the call. “Requiem knows I’m tagging along,” he warned her in a low tone. “He and Kelly are meeting up somewhere. I don’t think it’s anything to worry about, though—or at least, not yet. He’s been abundantly clear in that he thinks I’m pretty much useless, so as long as I cooperate and stick close to you, I doubt he’ll try anything. And if he does,” he added, remembering her worries from earlier, “Then I’ll make a run for it. It shouldn’t be too hard to find Phantom if I need him.”
A small black object suddenly flew directly towards the two, and Sivik instinctively caught it before it could smack into his face.
“Stop conspiring; it’s annoying,” Kelly grumbled.
Sivik studied the car freshener, unimpressed as he wrinkled his nose. “So that’s what that smell was. Why is there even a scent called ‘Black Ice’?” He wondered aloud, chucking it back into the front and landing it in the console.
Mary slid in next to Sivik, her curious gaze seemed to grow bigger at what Sivik said. "Really?" She whispered. She was about to reply to Sivik, still concerned about him endangering himself when Kelly threw something back at them. "Hey!" Mary pouted, crossing her arms at Kelly's retort, "Okay, but no throwing stuff at us. Even without my powers you'll still lose if it's a throwing competition," She said, threading her fingers through her blond hair before picking back up the things Requiem had given to her that she had left in the car.
Staring ahead she looked bitterly out the window, wondering if her mistake was not trying to escape while she was caught in the car. She had largely accepted her current situation, but parts of it still sucked too much to ignore, like having to listen to Kelly's orders. Still, from every angle she looked at it she was caught the moment the collar latched around her throat.
"Hey, want to see something cool, Sivik?" Mary asked, but also didn't wait for a reply as she lifted up her leg, to show her dark leggings, "This is a regenerative fabric," She explained, tearing it open with her nails before rubbing the fabric together between her fingers as the fabric naturally stitched back together. "It stitches back together from heat so I call it phoenix fabric," She explained but as she did she looked a bit tired. Leaning down she picked up the lunchbox that Requiem had given to her. Opening it up it looked less like a lunchbox and more like princesses table top. Pink satin and white lace were packed neatly at the bottom with frilly fake gold silverware pinned to the top of the box. The contents inside of the box were four small sandwiches packed towards the back of the box with pink heart toothpicks pinning the ingredients together. The top bun of each sandwich was cut out into a teddybear shape complete with the ears, muzzle and eyes with even some small details like blushing cheeks and a white glint in the eyes. To the left was a cup that held even tinier colorful cups with fruits and vegetables matching each color of the rainbow. Finally to the right were purple and pink candied popcorn sealed inside an airtight container, which was the one she took and opened.
"We can share if you'd like some, it's just sugar popcorn instead of salty," Mary explained, popping a few in her mouth.
When they arrived Requiem was waiting at the location, leaning against his car. Cherub was also with him, but she had decided it would be nicer to stay as a weapon rather than return to human form and wait out in the cold.
Kelly didn’t seem to doubt that, only giving her a wary backwards glance as he turned onto the main road.
Sivik examined the phoenix fabric curiously, his eyes lighting up when it fused back together. “That’s so helpful,” he enthused, already thinking of dozens of situations where the fabric could come in handy. He refrained from asking any questions, though, as Alik chose that exact moment to flip on some music. It was only out of pure curiosity and lack of anything better to do that he pressed ‘CD’ instead of reaching for the radio; something he’d never dared to do while alone with Kelly in his car.
It was quiet for a split second, and then—
“Don’t touch that!” “Is this Taylor Swift?”
The proxy shot Alik a look that could kill, but he seemed embarrassed. “It was free and my car doesn’t have Bluetooth,” he mumbled, suddenly refusing to look anyone in the eye. That was, until Sivik burst out laughing. “I did not peg you as a Swiftie, oh my God,” he giggled, wiping away actual tears from his eyes. “I guess even you can vibe to 1989.”
Kelly bristled, his ears turning red as he shot a glare at the blue-haired mutant.
Sivik tried to reign in his laughter, waving a hand in a sign of surrender. “I’ll stop, I’ll stop—I swear,” he promised, stifling his laughs enough that the proxy diverted his attention to turn off the music.
“I like this song!” Alik protested, but Kelly ignored him, switching to a random radio station playing what sounded like Green Day.
Sivik glanced at Mary, smothering a mischievous smile and tossing a couple pieces of popcorn in his mouth.
When Kelly got out of the car, it was with an expression equal parts disgruntled and offended. “I regret everything,” he deadpanned to his friend, waiting for everyone to exit his car before locking it.
“He likes Taylor Swift,” came a gleeful exclamation from Sivik, who had not stopped in the slightest. He had his sunglasses on and earbuds in, currently playing nothing as he held Seven-Eleven comfortably against his side like a parent with a toddler. His hoodie was now tied around his waist, the pockets weighed down by various knickknacks. Despite the mutant’s carefree demeanor, his eyes silently appraised Requiem for any sign of attack, carefully keeping Mary in his peripherals in the process.
Alik followed after Kelly, addressing the shadow hunter as he asked, “Can you make lunch for me, too? I’m assuming that’s where Mary’s feast came from.” His new elephant companion was snuggled in his hood again, mostly obscured from sight.
"Wait so we're not going to turn it up and sing along?" Mary asked with a teasing smirk right when Kelly turned to Green Day.
"Wha-" Requiem began, but was cut off by Sivik's comment before stifling a bit of laughter, "So what? Why should you be ashamed for listening to a top artist? Personally, I think it's a little disgraceful that society mocks people for listening to a woman singer who has just a touch of a girly vibe."
He was about to turn to Mary, but stopped at Alik's question, "Sure, you deserve a reward for always helping out, even if you're forced to. Whatever you want I'll make it when we do hunts together. And I can make you something too if you want Kelly."
Mary pushed a cup of banana slices to Requiem, "I don't want them."
"Tsh, you're such a kid, I don't want to hold your trash," Requiem said, but it took it anyways. This time he looked at Sivik, finally able to acknowledge him, "Hey Sivik, cute friend," he said, referencing to the plush he had with him.
"I don't want to hold it," Mary explained, which might have made sense since she was still carrying her disguise rather than putting it on.
“I never said I had anything against Taylor Swift,” Sivik quickly pointed out. “I just find it hilarious that ‘Mr. I-Kill-People-For-A-Living-So-Don’t-Mess-With-Me’ is a secret Swiftie.”
“Not another word,” Kelly growled, the tips of his ears still slightly pink, although he could always just blame that on the cold.
Alik seemed to be looking for something when Requiem’s response caught his attention. His eyes lit up, and it was clear by the surprise in them that he hadn’t expected a yes. “Heck yeah!” he enthused, slipping his hands in his pocket with repressed excitement.
The blue-haired mutant met Requiem’s acknowledging gaze with a small nod, then grinned and bounced the polar bear a couple times. “Her name’s Seven-Eleven,” he remarked matter-of-factly, moving on from the subject before Requiem could ask if he was serious.
“So how long are we going to be out here? I’m freezing,” he complained, pulling down the sleeve of his long sleeve shirt with his teeth due to lack of a free hand.