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 Children of the Atom - X-Men

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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue Jun 21, 2016 1:54 am

She had slept like a baby, repetition kicking in of a lullaby between car stops and brief moments at motels and resting places, just to make sure the rest of the crew was fed and taken care of. As Kim's eyes lazily droned open the last time, a sign on the side of the road welcome her.

"Welcome, We're Glad Georgia's on Your Mind".

"Wouldya look at that?" Izzy proclaimed, wiping a bit of sweat from his brow with the hand not on the wheel, "Made some mighty fine time on this trip."

He looked over his shoulder, noticing his sleeping cargo had finally awoken.

"Welcome to the end of the line, Kimberly!"
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Oct 23, 2016 3:35 am

Kim instantly perked to full alertness at the sign and Izzy’s words, bouncing in her seat as much as her seatbelt would allow her. “We’re here! Oh man we’re finally here! Wow, I just felt something settle in my chest that I didn’t even know was wound up! I guess that must have been homesickness? I mean I know I missed Georgia but dang. I sure missed it. But we’re here! We’re here we’re here we’re heeeeeeere! I’m hoooooooome!”

“Someone’s excited,” Mira said, chuckling.

“Of course I am!” Kim replied, nodding emphatically. “I’m a Georgia peach after all. Well, no, maybe not a peach. I’m more of a tomato or something. A Georgia tomato. But anyway, this is where I was born and raised! Well not here here, but in this state. It’s good to come back to it, even after all this time. Maybe especially. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that, right?”

Mira hummed in the affirmative, and Kim hummed as well, the song so fittingly referenced on the welcome sign.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Mon Oct 31, 2016 1:38 am

The motorcycle at the head of their motorcade roared out to signal the rest of the pack. Logan held a hand up in the warm Georgia air, stabbing out a thumb to the side of the road. A series of turn signals followed like dominoes from the front to their Jeep that was humming in more than one way. As the vehicles pulled over, a cloud of dirt kicked into the air. It took a few moments and an extra effort to make out the stern silhouette of Logan, undeterred by the haze.

"Looks like the pack leader wants a word, Kimberly," Izzy said, shuffling further to the door to put just that much more distance between himself and the Wolverine.

Logan crept up to the back of the vehicle, folding his arms over the metal hot from the mid-day sun. The burn didn't seem to bother him.

"So, kid; yer the map now. Gonna put you three out front. all you gotta do is get us there. Think you can do that?"
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Mon Oct 31, 2016 2:29 am

Kim nodded even more emphatically than before, beaming. "Of course! I know this place like the back of my hand! Well, I mean I guess it's probably changed in five years but I doubt the roads are any different. And I've got a great sense of direction, believe it or not, so even if it did we'd be fine. And we could always ask someone if we really got lost or something. Not that we will! We just. Could. Oooooor maybe we couldn't, since, y'know, we're supposed to be careful with this. Better safe than sorry and all. Well, I'm sure somebody has a GPS-"

"Kimberly, directions." Mira gently reminded her.

"Oh, right!" She laughed. "Keep on ninety-five for about forty-five minutes or so and then take seventeen. After that keep on it until you see Leroy Coffer, and stay on that until you see the road that takes you to Fleming. The way gets a little tricky after that because it's kind of in the middle of nowhere, so I'll tell you more when we get to it. I'll point out when everything comes up but there's the overview at least."

Kim went back to humming, tapping out the rhythm with her feet excitedly. She was almost home!
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Wed Feb 22, 2017 2:14 pm

They were finally there.

They were finally there, and Kim was nervous as all get-out.

“Okay, um,” she began, staring at the apartment door as she fiddled with the charms on her bracelet, before sucking in a breath and squaring her shoulders. She could do this. She could convince her parents to let her stay and her brothers would be fine with everything, and everything would be fine. “Here we go.”

She knocked on the door.

There was no answer.

She knocked on the door again.

“Coming, coming!” Came the muffled call from inside, followed by the pad of footsteps and the door opening.

Kim suddenly, fiercely, wished Cam were with her.

Slade Neumann was a giant of a man, closer to seven feet tall than he was to six. He was dressed in a tank top and pajama pants and had clearly just woken from sleep, rubbing at his closed eyes as he yawned. Belatedly, Kim realized it must be finals week for him. “Ah, hello? Can I help you?”

“…Hey big bother.” Kim murmured.

Slade’s eyes snapped wide open. He stared down at his little sister, his expression one of pure shock.

She smiled up at him nervously.

Before she even registered movement Kim was being pulled into the apartment, pulled into her older brother’s arms. The momentum knocked the two of them onto the floor, but neither of them really noticed. Kim hardly felt anything besides the booming, triumphant laughter from Slade’s chest. “It’s you! It’s really you! I knew it! I knew you were okay! What happened to you? Where have you been?! No, wait, I don’t care right now. You’re heeeeeeere!”

Kim giggled into her brother’s shoulder, delirious with sudden joy. “I’m heeeeeeere!” She echoed.

Slade jumped to his feet and pulled Kim up with him, pulling her into another hug the second they were both vertical. “God, I knew it! I knew Cole was wrong! He said we weren’t ever going to see you again but here you are! Ha! Take that! I was right! I WAS RIGHT, COLE! GET YOUR ASS OUT HERE!” He abruptly went very still and quiet and looked his sister dead in the eye. “Don’t tell Mom I said that.”

“Well I don’t know,” Kim responded, wearing that devious grin all younger siblings knew, “will you make me blondies if I don’t?”

Slade openly gaped at her before bursting out into laughter once more, and if their looks weren’t obvious enough you could tell they were related by that laugh alone. “Oh you little brat. Yes, I will make you blondies, I will make you all the blondies you want for just being alive. I’m pretty sure that’s worth infinite blondie points. But no swearing. Mom would kill me. COLE! GET YOUR ASS OUT HERE ALREADY!”

“I’m coming, I’m coming!” Cole called out as he emerged from the hallway, squinty-eyed and holding a coffee mug in his hand. He stared at his brother. “What. What do you want from me.”

“Hey bigger bother.” Kim said as she peeked out from behind Slade.

The mug shattered as it fell from Cole’s hand to the floor, and he was across the room with a death-grip on Kim in the blink of an eye. “Oh my God oh my God oh my God—”

Kim couldn’t exactly hug her brother back, what with the way he was pinning her arms to her sides, so she rested her head against his shoulder instead. “Hey bigger bother.” She said again.

A disbelieving, slightly hysterical laugh erupted out of Cole. “You — you ass! You complete and utter ass! We — I thought you were dead and you were just fine all along! How — you — you asshole!”

The words, though somewhat harsh, actually made Kim smile, because she knew Cole got angry when he worried. That’s who he was. “Sorry. But I’m here. I’m alright.”

His next laugh came out more like a sob, and he pulled just far enough away to stare at his sister and hold her upper arms in a white-knuckle grip. “Never again.” Cole demanded, his voice thick with tears and his eyes shining with them. “Never again, do you hear me? I can’t — I can’t go through this again, okay? I can’t. I can’t.”

“Never again.” Kim promised, because really, how could she do anything but?

Kim felt as much as saw the anger and fear drain out of Cole, and he let his hands drop with a low, shaky sigh. “I’m so glad you’re okay.”

“What about Mom and Dad?” Slade asked as the moment came to a close. “Have you seen them? Are they alright?”

“Wha — they’re not with you?” Kim asked, looking around the room as if they would suddenly magically appear.

As one, her brothers shook their heads.

“I…I haven’t seen them since…” Kim trailed off as her throat closed up of its own accord. She hadn’t seen them since Crenshaw. She hadn’t seen them since the last, terrible argument they had as the town fell burning around them. She hadn’t seen them, had been so sure that they would be here, and darn it all, she wanted to cry.

Family really did bring out the best and worst in her.

Cole recovered first, drawing in a breath and straightening up before he put a comforting hand on Kim’s shoulder. “Hey, it’s okay. You showed up here safe and sound — I’m sure they will too. We just gotta wait a little bit more.”

“Hmm, that sounds familiar.” Slade chimed in, looking at his older brother pointedly.

“Oh shut up. Anyway, it’s gonna be fine, Kimbo. Everything’s gonna be…” Cole trailed off, staring at Kim very strangly, before he adopted an expression of comedic horror as he stumbled back and pointed an accusing finger at his little sister. “YOU’RE TALLER THAN ME!”

His apparently not-so-little sister stared at him blankly. “…Huh?”

“You. Are. Taller. Than. Me.”

Kim blinked, and then suddenly realized that she was staring down at her brother, not up like she usually was. “Oh!”

“That’s all you have to say?! Oh?! You — you’re — I — what — why — how — just how tall are you anyway?!” Cole asked as he made large, increasingly wild gestures with his hands.

“Um, I don’t know. Maybe six feet?” Kim guessed, not having any real idea beyond very tall.

“Maybe? MAYBE?! You’re taller than me and you don’t even KNOW how tall you are?!”

His sister couldn’t help but chuckle. “Yeah, I guess?”

Cole threw his arms in the air. “Oh, and now you’re guessing?! Is that it?! This is no laughing matter, Kimberly Elise Neumann, no laughing matter at all! Height is an integral part of the concept of identity, of my identity in particular, and you not even knowing how tall you are when you’re taller than me is — why are you still laughing?!”

Kim was indeed outright laughing at this point, laughing hard, because really, her brother was just being ridiculous now. “You can’t — you can’t be more than two inches shorter than me, tops! What’s the big deal?”

“What’s the big deal? What’s the big deal?! It’s the principle of the thing! My baby sister is taller than me! ME! Her big brother! Her OLDEST brother! Not her biggest brother, because Slade got to inherit Dad’s height instead of Mom’s like I did and somehow grew even TALLER than him, and damn you for that, Slade, you traitor. But that was one thing, and I could accept that. But now you, my baby sister, TEN YEARS MY JUNIOR, are ALSO taller than me! Where’s the fairness in that, huh?! Nowhere! It’s nowhere because there isn’t any, I tell you! If I can’t be the tallest then I should at least be taller than YOU! And I was! For years! For sixteen glorious years! But then you turned seventeen while I wasn’t looking and grew again! AGAIN! Aren’t you supposed to have been done with that already?! You should be shrinking by now or something! That’s what’s supposed to happen when you get older! You shrink! You don’t get taller, you shrink! So shrink! SHRINK! SHRINK, YOU UNFAIRLY TALL CHILD!”

Cole started pushing down on his sister’s head, as if that would somehow magically make her shorter than him. Slade watched the antics from off to the side, debating between shaking his head at the ridiculous scene and guffawing at it, eventually settling on both. And Kim, who did not shrink in spite of Cole’s best efforts, who made no attempt to shove her brother away, who was laughing so hard she was crying, could only think how good it was to be home.

“Er, sorry, didn’t mean to ignore you all.” Slade added to the rest of the group, though he didn’t look very sorry. He was just too happy. “Here, come in. Are you friends of Kimberly's?”
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Sun Feb 26, 2017 4:51 am

From under the low brim of his cowboy hat, the always-present grimace of Logan didn't exactly come across as welcoming, though he didn't give off the vibe of a danger. He had brought Kim here, after all. Bringing one of his hairy, almost bestial hands up, he pushed the brim of his hat up enough to make eye contact with Slade.

"She's a hopeful student at our academy, actually," he muttered, "just takin' a field trip".

With a sniff, Logan turned to the students. "Look after the rides. We'll be back."

With that, he entered behind Kim.


His eyes were heavy at first. Really heavy, like ten tons weighed down on each lid. His limbs weren't much better, and it took the repetition of orders to get his fingers to twitch, and then to wiggle. Move. Move. Move. His fist closed around the railing of his hospital bed in his full-power, a fragile grasp at best.

Open them.

It was like the first time he had seen the sun; bright in ways he couldn't describe in words, but with gestures and various groans. One of those groans escaped his lips, the droning followed by the opening of his green, serpentine eyes just enough to make out a foggy figure sitting in the corner of his room.

"Bonjour, Tête endormie", the blurred image spoke in a voice that simultaneously calmed his nerves and set them ablaze, but he knew it. He knew he wasn't still in that road.


"Fine, mon ami," Gambit, just as tired if not more than the battered young man in the bed, said. Still, the smile on his face couldn't be taken away. "Y'all are safe, now. Here at de institute. You put on a real good fight an' been gettin' de sleep you deserve."

He didn't care about the institute or most of the cajun words he was hearing, but knowing Kim was safe was enough.

Cam closed his eyes again, except this time voluntarily.

Gambit did the same.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Wed Mar 01, 2017 3:34 am

"Academy? Kimbo, what on Earth have you — oh, come on, Cole, was that my mug?" Slade said, turning around and not bothering to close the door behind him. It was Dovland. "You broke it!"

"I was a little preoccupied, thank you!" Cole shot back in return, who had given up on making Kim grow shorter and was instead punishing her with a noogie she made no real effort to escape.

"It was my favorite!"

"I'll buy you a new one!"

"I got it in Germany!"

"I'll buy it from Germany then!"

"It's not the same—"

"Dude, chill." Kim cut in, easily breaking free from Cole's hold (whose squawk of surprise was suspiciously chicken-like) to step forward and smoosh the middle brother's face. "It's just a mug. I know you have others. Weren't you going back there once you graduated, too? You can always grab another one then."

Slade, with his face smooshed, could not properly form words, so he shook his head to dislodge her hands. "We, uh...that sort of thing got put on hold after...yeah."

Yeah indeed.

"Speaking of school," Cole spoke up, stepping around the coffee puddle and shattered porcelain, glancing between his sister and Logan as he did so, "what was that about an academy? And a field trip? Aaaaaaand literally everything you've been doing up 'til now? It has been literally months and I want answers young lady. Just where have you been? What happened?"

For once, Kim was at a loss for words. Her brothers deserved an answer, an honest one after everything that happened, but what could she say? Oh, I'm being targeted by a bunch of crazy people who want to use me to power their doomsday device or something equally insane? And the guys at this school saved me and my new friend and people I want to be friends from that after weeks of traipsing through the wilderness because we were worried about being followed? Which we were? By them, ironically? In addition to the bad people? By the way, I'm a mutant? We're all mutants? Surprise? She couldn't just say that.

Well. She could say that, but even Kim had some tact.

Not much though.

Kim knelt down by the broken mug, taking a few of the bigger pieces into her hand. Slade stepped forward with his own hand out. "Ah, wait Kimbo, let Cole get—"

She crushed the shards in her fist.

"Kimberly what the hell?!" Cole yelled as Slade shouted "Towel! Towel!" and went to get one. He did it almost inhumanly fast. The eldest crouched down by her side, grabbing her wrist too quickly to be gentle. "Jesus, you dumbass, pay attention! Here, let me see..."

Cole coaxed her fingers loose, only for the now smaller pieces of what was once a mug to fall with several clinks to the ground, not at all imbedded in his sister's skin.

Or rather, scales.

"So. I'm a mutant." Kim told her brothers bluntly.

Cole and Slade stared at her palm with wide eyes, then turned to look at each other in unison, as if it had been a scene pre-planned. The moment was frozen as if on pause.

And then it melted, and they smiled.

"You too, huh?" Cole asked her, soft and laughingly.

"...Wait, what?" Kim replied.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:48 am

"You mutants, too, huh?" Logan snorted, slipping a hand out from his jeans pocket. He stood next to Kim, this girl that he hadn't spent much time with, but even Logan couldn't have avoided hearing the stories of the kids from Crenshaw. She had heart. Logan could respect it.

"We're from the Xavier Institute for the Gifted. We take care of mutants. You might know that."

He motioned to the students out front.

"They're some more students. Your sister here and some friends have been through some impressive shit," he said, unapologetic. "They're fighters. Lucky we found 'em when we did, though."

He grimaced up to Kim, he too a few inches smaller than the girl. "Take the time you need, kid. Me and the others are gonna get some grub."

Without a word more, he exited.


All he wanted was a beer.

When he had pulled into this dive bar in the middle of nowhere, somewhere around Texas, he thought, he just wanted to unwind. Not for a reason more than having a good time and listen to some good music. When a few "tough guys" had come up to teach him a lesson, probably about touching the dancing girls against bar rules,who could blame him for throwing one or two, or five through a few windows, and one through a wall.

And then this smug, suited guy interrupted him again...and Blitzkrieg was going to have none of it.

Out in the dirt parking lot, he craned his head back to look down on the man standing almost as confidently as he was.

"Not gonna lie, man, I was thinkin' 'bout sparing you, but....this is a bad night. Soooooo I gotta kick your brain stem into your stomach."

"Is that so?" the voice stung his ears, the narcissistic voice pushed over the edge by the English accent that only annoyed Blitz more. "Is that because of your powers?"

It caught Blitz off, for sure.

"So...you get the picture, then. You a mutant, too?" Blitz' grin grew wider..........wilder, "so now, you know what you're in for.....time to eat, then!"

He took his aura, hungering like it had never been fed before, and focused it all on the man in white. He would consume everything here. He would leave him like a husk in the dirt.

"You know," the Englishman spoke, tapping his cane on the earth below, "You're too dependent on your gift, Mr....Blitz, correct?"

It was like....taking a breath when there was no air. Just empty, nothing filling his psionic lungs...and Blitz didn't know why.

"One day, Mr. Blitzkrieg....you're going to encounter the wrong guy...and it will cost you."

Grasping at his chest, feeling only the strength his body normally possessed and no end to the hunger, the wide-eyed Blitz could only offer one sentence in horror.

"Wh....what are you?"

With an unimpressed stare down his nose, Moriarty spoke in words that choked the color from the world around him.

"I'm the wrong bloody guy."

He drew his sword.
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PostSubject: Re: Children of the Atom - X-Men   Tue May 15, 2018 2:15 am

“Wait, we’re southern, we’re supposed to feed you!” Slade called to Logan’s retreating back, shoulders slumping when the man vanished from view. “Damnit.”

“Wait whoa, whoa, whoa, what?” Kim interrupted, looking between her brothers because seriously, what? “Me too? You two? Mutants? What? When? How?”

“Well you see, when a mommy mutant and a daddy mutant love each other very much-“

She shoved at Cole. “I’m serious!”

“Hi Serious, I’m Cole.”


Slade finally gave up on cajoling the others back and closed the door, heading over into the kitchen, pausing only long enough to drag his older brother along with him. “If we’re gonna talk, we’re gonna clean our mess and eat first, alright? Kimberly, just go sit at the table a minute.”

“If I explode, it’s your fault!” She called back to them, but dutifully went to do as she was told.

Way too long for Kim’s taste and certainly not a minute later, the Neumanns were all seated at the table, food and drink studiously ignored. “So. Who goes first?”

“Well, Kimberly technically asked first and all.” Slade pointed out with a shrug. “So, yeah. Go for it Kimbo. What questions you got for us?”

She had so many questions. Yet, she could only articulate a few, by her standards. “What can you do? Why didn’t you tell me? Who else knows? When did you get your gifts? Who else is a mutant that I didn’t know about? Is there anything else I should know? That I shouldn’t know but you’ll tell me anyway? And you better. Tell me. Eeeeeeeeeverything.”

Cole chuckled fondly, and Slade laughed outright. “There’s the list. Don’t worry, we’re not gonna hide anything more from you. No more secrets.”

“No more secrets.” Kim echoed.

The brothers both nodded, and with a gesture from the oldest, Slade began. “Well, for the first, I have…well, a couple powers, really. A weird small, eclectic mix. But they’re all mental powers, and weak except for what I call my main one, which is essentially, I can make physical illusions. For example.”

Suddenly the chair Cole was sitting on vanished, and he fell to the floor. “Ow, my ass!”

“We only have two chairs, dude, I don’t know how you fell for that.”

“I thought you were gonna do it to HER!”

Kim laughed, delighted and amused in equal measure.

After more grumbling and the retrieval of a chair from his own room, Cole picked up the torch. “I, unlike this asshole, cannot and do not use my powers for evil. I can manipulate time. I can slow it down around me, or speed it up but I don’t usually do that because it’s freaking weird. It all snaps back into place when I’m done doing it though so I don’t think I’ve created any alternate timelines or anything.”

“This is where we’d ask you about your stuff in return,” Slade cut in, glancing at her hand pointedly, “but for your sake we’ll save that all for the end, okay?”

“Thanks.” Kim replied, beaming, and didn’t even complain when both brothers reached over and mussed up her hair.

“Now the reason we didn’t tell you. Long story short — Mom.”

“Long story long,” Cole continued before Kim could open her mouth, “is still Mom. You know how she is. She would have lost it if not one but two of her kids were mutants. Or, well, three now.”

“Which brings us to your next question; no, Mom did not know, and Dad did not know because Mom would then know. The only person who did know about our powers besides each other is…well, was Omama.”

“Omama knew?!”

“Yeah. We got our powers at the same time, Slade and I. You were four, around then. He’d just confided in me and we were both freaking out over what to do when she just came over and…man, I don’t even know how to explain it. She just knew. And she asked if we needed help with our gifts — was always very adamant about calling them that — and taught us how to use them.”

“Wait, but how did she know how to teach you?”

“Because she was a mutant too.”

“She was?!” Kim bolted out of her seat in shock. First her brothers, now her grandmother was a mutant? Who was next, her dad?!

Slade chuckled, and Cole outright cackled. “Oh my God, your face!” He wheezed unhelpfully.

Motioning for her to sit down, Slade continued in his stead. “Yeah, Omama was a mutant too. I guess it must run in the family, except it skipped Dad or something. Probably for the best all around. I can’t imagine that playing out well.”

Kim sat down as directed, but wondered.

“As for what else you should know…you know the story of how Omama and Opa met?”

She rolled her eyes. “Like it wasn’t the only thing he ever talked about.”

“Well, it’s true for the most part, except they neglected to tell you that the camp Opa rescued everyone from was, in fact, specifically designed to hold mutants and their families.”

Something inside of Kim got small and cold — only to swell into a fiery blaze. “I freaking HATE Hitler.”

“So do we, Kimbo.”

Kim rested her forehead against her hand. So much new information, and she only had more questions for it. “So what could Omama do? What was her gift?”

“She could control rocks,” Slade answered, to which Cole added, “Like an earthbender, but better.”

“Earthbending? Is that why — oh, our names! Her rock collection! They — because of her gift!”

“Other way ‘round, Kimbo.”

“Oh, you know what I mean.” She shoved at Cole again, who beamed unrepentantly. “So what else? What else is there? Come on, tell me!”

“No, that’s about it from us. Now it’s your turn to explain things.” He shoved her back, no more gently. “C’mon, Kimbo. We missed your stories.”

A fit of nerves took over her, but also eagerness. Her brothers had always been there to listen to her rambles, and these past few weeks had left her sorely needing it. She rambled to Cam, and had practically word-vomitted all over the Professor before she left for Georgia, but her brothers’ ears were where she truly stored all her meandering thoughts and concerns. Where she truly felt safe enough to.

It was good to be home.

Kim took a deep breath, and began.
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Children of the Atom - X-Men
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