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 Children of the Atom - X-Men

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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 3:35 am

"Yeah! He was today! And depending on how soon he meant when he said he wanted to talk to me again, he might still be." Kim told him as she bounced on her toes. Between adrenaline and pure excitement, she had energy to burn. "He was really nice! That kind of guy you instantly feel like you're friends with. And really patient, too. He put up with all my babbling in his head and didn't seem even a little bit annoyed. He didn't say where he was staying, if he's still in town, but he was trying to get my mom to let me go to his school, so yeah! Seems like he's taking mutants there. Do you know him? Is he really famous? I wouldn't kn-"

She cut herself off suddenly with a gasp, and bounded forward so she was right the boy's face. "Whoa! Your eyes are so pretty! And freaking cool! They look like a snake's eyes! How awesome is that? Super awesome, that's how awesome! Snakes are such cool animals, some of my favorites - wait. You can control poisons too? Whoa! So it's really like a snake! Wow wow wow wow WOW! That's amazing! You're amazing! You are so COOL! Wow! But what's with the whole mask thing? Are you a ninja too? Because dude, that's just not fair. Being a ninja on top of poison and snake eyes and green skin? I'm getting jealous thinking about just how awesome you are. By the way, I'm totally breaking at least twelve rules of personal space right now, aren't I? Sorry."

She took a step back so she wasn't all up in his face, and stuck out her hand again. "But you're supposed to shake someone's hand when they offer it so let's try again. It's awesome to meet you, Cameron."

Kim beamed and waited expectantly.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:01 am

His brain danced in his little, green-colored head. The Professor Charles Xavier, in this town. He would have to find him, to ask if he too could be taken to the school. To be taken to a place he didn't have to hide. Still, that would have to come the next day, tonight was all but over and he would have to rest for a least one time. He spoke without really listening his words almost robotic in sound.

"Yeah.....like a snake. This covers my face.......stops people from seeing it. It's better that way."

He examined Kim's hand as she put it out once more. He had ignored it on purpose once before, hoping that it would be enough, but this girl was an insistent one. He looked out form under his wrappings to the limb, and then back away, trying his hardest not to make eye contact.

"It'll get on you."

He looked at his hand, which slightly shimmered.

"The toxin leaks out from my skin.....I don't know how to stop it. I can't touch anyone or.......you know."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:14 am

"And I can't be hurt, so it doesn't matter. Remember?" Kim reached out and grabbed Cameron's hand. Heat once again raced through her body as more adrenaline was made, and her hand shifted and bubbled to change to prevent the poison from affecting her, but by the time she made contact it was done. She shook their hands a few times, let go, and smiled at him. "See? No harm done. And now our friendship is sealed."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:21 am

Cameron watched in pure shock as Kim grabbed his hand, feeling the mutation of her palm in his own. She wasn't hurt. She wasn't even kind of annoyed with it. Cameron had seen others go into total shutdown from contact with him, but this girl stood there smiling. He examined his own hand when she let go, wondering if the poison was gone, but there it was. He looked back to her with disbelief etched in his eyes.

"You're....ok?............We're friends?"

He had never said that sentence before. It tasted weird, like a saltiness he couldn't describe in just words. He wanted to smile, but the confusion kept his face almost completely blank. It was hidden under his bandages, anyway, but the statuesque expression was still there.

He didn't know what to say, and even if he did, he couldn't say it through his slacked jaw.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:39 am

"Yes and yes! Well, if you want to be. Oh gosh, I did it again, didn't I?" Kim looked away, a nervous expression on her face. "I'm always doing that, just being selfish and doing things without thinking of others. I mean, it takes two to be friends, right? And here I am just deciding that we're friends! All on my own! Man I'm insensitive. Mom's right, I never think of anyone but myself. I'm sorry, I'm awful. I'd probably be a horrible friend if I'm already messing it up this bad. Gosh darnit. I'm such an idiot. But - but I'd really love to be your friend! I mean, I probably wouldn't be a very good one, at first. I'm loud and I'm selfish and I don't think and I can never shut up, and a bunch of other awful things. But! I'll work on it! I swear! I'll get better! I...I'll be the best friend you could ever have, if you'll just give me a chance! So..."

Kim looked back up at him and smiled, shyly and still nervous but with absolute sincerity. "...can we be friends? Please?"
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:54 am

He had planned on just going to sleep by himself, waking up by himself and living the rest of his time in those woods by himself like he had done for years before, but in that moment, he had found a different option. There was a road as forked as the tongue that flicked on the inside of his mouth, and he finally had a new choice to make. Actually, there was no choice at all. Logic told him to stay away, to make sure this girl didn't get tied up with him and his life and all of the chaos that came with it, but the heart tends to take control at times, and in an instant he simply hollered as loud as his whispering voice would allow.

"Yes!"

He stopped, realizing what he had said as if it had come from another pair of lips. He knew taking it back would be the best option, running away and losing her in the trees, forcing her back where she came from, but he just couldn't do it. 

"I....don't want you to stop. People.....don't....talk to me. They don't even look at me. I like this....you."

He finally, mercifully, allowed his reptilian eyes to meet Kim's.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Fri Jun 13, 2014 5:16 am

The shyness and nervousness melted away from Kim, and she glowed with pure joy. Taking her new friend's words to heart, she didn't think about her next action, which was to tackle him with a hug. "Ooooooooooh thank you thank you thank you thank you! You won't regret this, I swear! I'll be the best friend you could ever have! And I'm totally invading your personal space again, aren't I? Oops. My bad."

Kim let go and stepped back a bit, still positively beaming. "Those people you're talking about don't know what they're missing! You're awesome, and I'm so glad we're friends now. Really, thank you so much." She laughed abruptly, and added, "But seriously, if I ever do start talking too much or something feel free to tell me to shut up. Even I know I'm a chatterbox."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jun 17, 2014 2:24 am

Cameron couldn't decide on what exactly he was feeling at that moment, his senses all overloaded. He had been in fights, he had been in chases, his life hung on the line, but hugs? Yeah, he didn't do those. He seemed to struggle with what exactly to do, not really returning the hug to Kim, his face in a overpowering, "the hell are you doing?" expression.

But she really did like him, didn't she? Cameron believed she couldn't have lied even if she wanted to, her need to speak almost all of the time wouldn't help her in trying to conceal information. While he wasn't sure if he even wanted to enter into the risk of this "friendship" thing, it was hard to turn away something he was always reminded he didn't have.

"Don't worry about it."

His raspy voice spoke as he stepped back, trying to subtly take some of that personal space back.

"Doubt you have all night to sit here in the woods, though."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jun 17, 2014 3:17 am

Kim checked her internal clock, and then winced. "Yeah, I've gotta head off. My dad'll be waking up soon and start looking for me, so I gotta get out of the woods so he can find me. That stinks, I was hoping to be able to talk to you longer. We barely got to at all." She huffed, a little saddened, but quickly perked up as an idea struck. "Oh I know! I'll come back tomorrow! That way we can have a lot more fun and talk more! Awesome!"

It was something Kim had never done before, to run away from home two nights in a row. She wasn't sure exactly what her parents would think if she did it. She got in so much trouble for doing it normally, and tonight she had run away after an argument with her mom, another first that would doubtlessly get her in even more trouble than usual. What would happen if she did it again?

Still, she had just made a new friend and she desperately wanted the chance to talk with him and get to know him more. That was worth the risk of whatever would happen afterwards, in her eyes.

"I'm not positive I'll be able to find this exact spot in the woods again, though. Do you know that abandoned park nearby? It's about ten minutes running in that direction. I'll be over there tomorrow night, if you want to come." She grinned, and impulsively gave him another quick hug. "Bye Cameron! I hope I'll see you later!"

With that, Kim turned on her heel and ran in the direction of the park.

Just before she reached the park, however, she paused. Her skin was still changed from coming into contact with the tree and Cameron's skin. While the former was hidden under her tank top, the latter was still visible, even if it wasn't quite as obvious a change. Still, if she went out as she was, her dad would see it and that was just about the last thing she wanted. She needed to change back.

Kim sat down on a stump, rested her hands palms-up on her knees, closed her eyes and breathed deep and even. Her oldest brother had taught her how to meditate years ago, and while it was difficult to do, it was the best way to calm herself down so she could change back. Her body wouldn't return to normal until she felt she was safe and all the adrenaline was gone, after all.

Eventually it worked. Kim had to hold in a hiss of pain as her body shifted and twisted back to the way it normally was. Adrenaline always blocked out the pain of the initial transformation, but the second had no such buffer and always hurt like nothing else. She loved her gift and always would, but she couldn't say she was fond of that part.

But it was done, and now her dad would be none the wiser if she kept her mouth shut, so Kim stood and went to walk the streets until he found her.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jun 17, 2014 4:14 am

"I know the spot."

Cameron whispered but Kim had already left, running of into the woods and disappearing, and again he was alone. Alone for all of two seconds as he climbed back up a tree and quietly took off after her. He had made a promise that he would see the girl safely home, and while she sat there in meditation, he watched from the darkness, making sure her peace was undisturbed. He did not let her out of his sight until she had been found, choosing to leave to avoid the conflict between parent and child that he knew would happen.

He returned to his camp knowing that she was safe, and he slept well in his hamak strung up in a tree.

Her being alright was all he was concerned with that night.

---------------------------------------------

"SST! SST! HAH! SST! AH! SST!"

A steady thud pummeled into the air through the woods of Crenshaw, the release of breath between teeth accompanying every beat. A set of fists, taped around in white to secure the steadiness of the wrists, struck into the base of a large tree sending chips of bark to the ground. A grey hoody bobbed as the young man wearing it bounced on his feet, ducking and weaving around as if the tree was striking back, and countering. Beads of sweat dripped down his face from the workout, a look of pure, uninterrupted focus on his face. He continued to punch into the side of the tree, until the whir from the large black jet behind him broke the calm of the woods.

This wasn't just some normal training session, after all.

The young man threw one more punch before turning to the ramp now descending to the ground. He greeted the man in the wheelchair who rolled onto the grass.

"Good Morning, Isaiah."

"So am I goin' into town today, Professor?"

Charles Xavier was not disturbed by the abruptness of the young man's question. Isaiah was commonly a very calm student and a wonderful personality to have around, but being stuck on a plane for a few days would have anyone on edge. Today, however, would not be the same.

"Yes. Storm will be taking the Blackbird back to the Institute and bringing back the X-Men. I sensed the presence of The Brotherhood in the town last night. I sensed....a murder. You will accompany me into town today and tonight and monitor the activity, and wait for the X-Men to arrive."

"Yes sir."

Isaiah took the words the Professor had spoken straight to the heart, knowing the gravity o the mission. He was not one of the X-Men. In fact, he was only here as a potential example of what the Institute could offer the mutants of Crenshaw. This would be his chance to prove himself, and more importantly, his chance to help people.

He went back to his training, getting ready or anything.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jun 17, 2014 4:40 am

Kim sighed as she paced around her room. It wasn't even a day into her punishment, and she was already bored out of her mind.

Exactly as she had suspected, she had gotten grounded for a month upon her return home. For someone who was kind of grounded for life anyway, it was a strange thing, but it was a little more serious than it might have sounded. Like normal teenagers, being grounded involved taking away her rights to games and the TV and the likes. However, unlike normal teenagers, she was locked inside her room for the entirety of her punishment. In addition, her parents would not talk to her at all, even when they brought her food, and her mom would stop teaching her until it was over. Her small social circle was gone, as well as the majority of the things that kept her occupied most days. And this time it was for an entire month. Kim had never been grounded for longer than a week before, and that length of time left her enough of a mess that she didn't risk doing anything to upset her parents for several weeks afterwards. And now she had to endure being alone and unoccupied for a month.

If Kim let herself dwell on it long enough, she was honestly concerned for her sanity.

But she never let herself dwell on it very long, as it never changed anything. She only sighed again and grabbed one of the novels on her bookshelf. No time like the present to start rereading them all.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:33 am

"$15,000! Oh yeah, that's how we get it done!"

"Why don't you try not screaming for once, Trevor?"

They had left the car sales lot with a wad of cash in their hand and the enthusiasm of a "job" well done. The siblings Harris, Sherrie and Trevor, enjoyed the prospects of the night before, their recently acquired car fetching a hefty pay day for them. Trevor, very much excited, only served to annoy his sister a little more.

"We just got a few months worth of pay and you want me to be cool about it? Gotta learn to live it up a little, sis."

The siblings went on their way as if this kind of moment were normal to them, because it was.

-----------------------------------------------

Eyes set on Kim in her room from the outside, hidden beneath the globes of leaves upon the trees. A hand slid down the tree he sat upon, saddened that he couldn't go closer. Not yet, at least. there would be a few more hours until nightfall, and at that time things would be a whole lot easier.

'Til then, Cameron felt like this was his way of being with his new friend. That was good enough for him. He just hoped she could feel it too.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:18 am

After a much longer wait than Kim would have liked, it was finally nighttime.

She left a little bit earlier than she usually did. Not long enough to risk anyone being awake, but she was quite certain that if she waited any longer than was absolutely necessary she was going to spontaneously combust. Her brothers had tried to convince her that staying put for too long would make that happened when she was younger. She'd learned otherwise since then, but she still didn't like inactivity or waiting any better.

Kim went straight to the park, resisting even the urge to go see all the animals at that one lady's house, placed her backpack down and sat on the swing to wait for her friend.

She really, really hoped he would come.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:58 am

"You got in trouble."

The whisper spoke out from the brush behind the swing, signalling the arrival of the snake-tongued mutant who lived in the woods. Cameron, even knowing that Kim somehow found him fascinating, would not completely come out of the cover, ashamed of the complications he had brought to Kim's life.

"I'm sorry."

He was embarrassed, which was a feeling he had gotten used to in the past, but in this case it was as if a new wound had opened. He didn't feel like he was being a good friend. He knew he wouldn't be one, anyway.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:23 am

"Cameron!" Was Kim's initial response to his sudden appearance and words, in addition to a bright smile and a tackle of a hug. "You came you came you came! I was kinda worried you wouldn't because I'm really strange and I figured that you might not actually want to be friends and were just being nice last night or that you had something else to do tonight and I ran away too fast to hear you protest but I only thought of that when I got home so I was REALLY worried but you're here and I'm super glad and DANGIT I will get the rules of personal space down eventually."

She let him go, bright smile still on her face, and only then did Cameron's words actually register. "Oh, no no no, don't worry about it!" Kim told him as she waved her hand in a dismissive manner. "I've done this before and it happens every time! Really, don't worry, I'm just grounded for a while, no big deal. Bit boring, but nothing really bad, you know? Besides, getting to meet you? Worth all the punishment in the world."

Kim giggled and bounced in place a bit from pure happiness. "So how was your day? Mine was pretty uneventful, as you could probably guess. I read a lot of books, mostly, and acted them out some, but that was mostly it. Basically I was just trying to pass the time until I could get here. Don't you hate how time goes slower when you're waiting for something you really want? I sure do. And I'll shut up and let you answer now."

She waited, eagerly and expectantly.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:41 am

This was the point when Cameron's thinking through of things before doing them would come in handy. Saying, "I know what you did today, I watched you for some of it" definitely wasn't the most non-stockery thing he could say. He couldn't return the high-impact hug put upon him, as he still hadn't figured out exactly what to do in that situation.

"I still feel bad for it."

He thought about her questions. How was his day? He hadn't been one to participate in small-talk for the almost entirety of his life, so the seemingly trivial query had him thinking for probably longer than what was required.

"I went into town for supplies.....got lunch."

He toyed with the wrappings around his face, trying hard to avoid any signal that his "finding" food was more legal than it really was. He had outrun three men with shotguns and personally tracked a rabbit for lunch. Gruesome stuff, dangerous as well.

"Boring stuff, really."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:11 am

"Seriously, don't feel bad! You had literally nothing to do with me getting in trouble! Zip! Zero! Nada! Nichts! My parents don't even know that I met anyone. I never told them about you. So no feeling guilty for no reason or I...I dunno, I'll tickle you until you surrender your unnecessary sadness!" Kim wiggled her fingers 'threateningly' and chuckled.

She dropped her hands and continued. "Your day sounds more interesting than mine. I've always wondered what Crenshaw looks like during the day. I only ever see it at night, you know? And it's really pretty under the moonlight, so I bet it's even prettier when the sun's out! And I bet it's more lively during the day, with all the people. And more fun. Oh! Speaking of fun, what do you want to do now? I'm five years rusty at this whole friendship thing, so sorry if I'm a little awkward. Or a lot of awkward. Hmm...well, we could get to know each other better? Like, likes and dislikes and favorite colors and all that jazz? I brought some games in my backpack if you wanna take a look at those, and some food and water, too, in case we get hungry or thirsty. We could go exploring in the woods, or the town...we could make an adventure, too. That's all I can think of right now. Anything strike your interest yet?"

Kim excitedly bounced in place a bit more. She'd missed having a friend.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sat Jun 28, 2014 2:27 am

Crenshaw during the day. The trees seemed more green, the waters of the creeks and ponds in the park glistened like the diamond on a new bride's ring. Smiling faces everywhere. Smiling faces who used to stare at him. Smiling faces which turned to frowning aces, which turned to grimacing faces, which in turn changed to name calling and the occasional angry mob. 

Crenshaw was many things during the day. "Pretty" and "fun" were not among them.

"I.....I don't know."

Cameron spoke in his whisper tone, the bandages around his mouth moving with the unseen lips underneath them. He was just as new to this friends thing as Kim was, perhaps even more so. Kim had enjoyed the comfort of others at least once in her life. Cameron still found the idea to be mysterious.

"We can play some games or....something. Not much of the woods I haven't seen already. There is someplace in town I like, but.....I don't want to risk it."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:57 am

"Really? Where in town?" Kim asked, curious. "Is it that lady's house on the corner of Darten and Willow with all the animals? Because that's one of my favorite places to stop by when I go out. All her pets are so cute! The dogs are always so happy to see people and their tails wag so hard and they're all super sweet and playful, and they and the cats all get along great, and the cats are so chill that you can pick them up and carry them around and they won't get annoyed at all, and she has a few rabbits too but they're all really shy, which is too bad because they're ADORABLE. Or is it that one street, oh, what was it called...oh, actually, I think it was Gardenia Lane. How fitting. Anyway, the one with all the pretty trees and flowers? It's best in the spring if you ask me, because everything is blooming and so beautiful, but it's nice in pretty much any season to be honest. I like going by the schools and the cemetery too, but I don't think those are my favorite favorites, you know? Actually, my absolute favorite is probably this park, though the animal lady is a really close second. So where do you like to go? Is it like, dangerous or something? It's too late for anyone in this sleepy town to be up, so I don't think we'd run into any trouble with people. And even if there were, now I'm really curious! So where is it? Can we go? Please?"

And with that, Kim finally shut up to let Cameron respond.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Jun 29, 2014 3:15 am

"It's dangerous. It's always dangerous in town for us."

Cameron sighed. This girl, for lack of a better term, was the definition of ignorant from no fault of her own. If she had the misfortune of bearing the marks of mutation permanently, she would easily be sitting inside an MRD holding cell. This worried Cameron, but at the same time, he felt compelled. Compelled to keep an eye on the girl.

"It's.....better if I showed you."

He wanted to shake his head no but saying no to a brand new friend became nigh impossible to him. He had not expected to have one at this moment and secretly, he couldn't make himself say no. He could, however, pass a serous look directly into the eyes of Kim, his reptilian stare speaking in volumes his natural voice could not.

"But you need to be quiet, alert, and listen to everything I tell you until we get there."
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Jun 29, 2014 3:29 am

"Can do!" Kim replied as she saluted, mimed zipping her lips, and motioned for Cameron to lead the way. Even so, she couldn't help but bounce on her toes a bit. She was excited and curious to see the place that her new friend liked, and to indirectly learn more about him. Still, she had to wonder what exactly what was so dangerous about this place he liked. It was Crenshaw! Who or what could be dangerous to them here?

Regardless of whether there was actual danger or not, however, Kim would trust Cameron and follow his instructions as best she could. After all, that's what friends did.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Jun 29, 2014 3:44 am

He didn't believe her.

Cameron nodded in assurance, though, turning his back to Kim and motioning for her to follow him. At that moment, any chance of small talk on the way to Downtown Crenshaw had ceased, as he was in full-mission mode. The duo moved through the woods for many minutes until arriving new town square of Crenshaw, lost to stillness in the midnight hour. Even with the coast seemingly clear, Cameron took no chances. From the shadows he scanned the streets, only signalling to Kim when he had decided the coast was clear.

Sticking to the walls, he almost glided across them until arriving at one in particular, a storm drain leading down onto the ground where they now stood. He demonstrated the grip needed to climb, then motioned up, before effortlessly ascending up and onto the roof.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Jun 29, 2014 3:59 am

To what might have been Cameron's surprise, Kim did exactly as she said she would. She stayed silent and serious, a rather jarring difference from the usual endless and cheerful blather, she kept her eyes open for anything that could possibly be dangerous, and she followed his orders to the letter. Climbing the storm drain gave her some trouble - she wasn't a ninja like her friend, much as she wished she was - but Kim managed to get up it quickly and quietly enough nonetheless, and waited for Cameron's next instructions.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jul 01, 2014 2:14 am

He was impressed with how well she listened, though in a way Cameron was not surprised. For one to be kept locked in a home, even with a few deviations, it would take a real respect for the orders of others. She appeared to be awaiting more of them at that moment, but Cameron's course plotting was as quick as it was safe. After years of sneaking around in the dark, efficiency was essential to survival.

"So....this is it."

Cameron turned to face Kim, around him only an empty rooftop save for a few spinning vent covers and air conditioning units. It appeared as if no one had stepped onto that roof for years, and that was probably why Cameron liked it so much.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jul 01, 2014 2:59 am

At the announcement that they had arrived, Kim went back to her usual self. Her expression relaxed and she grinned, looking around her friend's favorite spot curiously, but even so her voice was quiet when she spoke. "Wow! So this is your favorite spot! Cool! I've never been on a rooftop before. I'm kinda surprised I managed to get up here at all, I'm not that strong. Woah, we're pretty high up, aren't we? I've always loved heights, I would always go climbing up the tallest trees back when I could. It was like the closest I could get to flying, you know? But it always freaked my family out. Even Slade nearly peed himself that one time he saw me, and he never seems to lose his cool. Though, I guess it WAS his turn to babysit me that day. Even with all that, though, I loved doing it. I've always wanted to fly."

Kim turned her smile to Cameron. "Thank you for showing me this. It means a lot to me."
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Children of the Atom - X-Men
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