2007-10-19: A Little Chat


Cam_icon.gif Kory_icon.gif

Summary: Kory sits Cam down for a serious chat, and revelations are made.

Date It Happened: October 19th, 2007

A Little Chat

East Village, NYC - The Secret Lair

It's a quiet afternoon in the Lair, as most Sundays are. Kory is doing her usual Sunday afternoon puttering. She's dusting off the figures, tidying the gaming section, straightening the books, and the covers of the longboxes. She's wearing a strange, pensive expression as she does all this, as if something is weighing on her mind.

Cam comes wandering into the store. Except for, like yesterday, how he's moving his injured arm, it's pretty much just how he usually comes in. Smiling, he waves quickly to Kory, "Hi!" Looking a lot better than he did last night when she took him home.

"Cam! Hi!" Kory lights up at seeing him, her smile banishing the frowny pensive expression from her. "Feeling better? Got a good night's sleep?" She tucks the duster behind the counter, and goes over to offer him a one-armed hug.

Cam hugs Kory back, one armed as well of course because of his injury, but he's smiling brightly. "Yep! Feel fine. And pills won't wear off for a while today."

"That's good," Kory says, earnestly. "But I'll take you right back to Ms. Niki if you're feeling badly. You just say the word." She pauses for a second. "I was thinking, instead of a roll of quarters, how'd you feel about a cellphone you can keep on you instead of having to find a pay phone? I feel just terrible you weren't able to call me when you needed me, and I don't want that to happen again."

Cam nods a little, smiling still, "Ok." Then his eyes widen at the offer, "Wow, really? Yeah, that'd be awesome! I never had one before. Micah wants one too, but Niki won't let him have one." Then he blinks, at the last, and says, "It ain't your fault."

"Yeah, really. My little brother just got a new phone, and his old one is still perfectly good." Kory rolls her eyes at the waste, but shrugs, and goes on. "So I told him I could put the old one to use. So it's not super-new, or super-shiny. But it'll let you get ahold of me, or Ms. Niki, or Mr. Jones, anytime you need us." She nods at him. "I know it wasn't, but still. That had to have been so scary. Oh, and Aidan said tell you hi. You remember him, right? The dancer guy?"

Cam smiles again at the first and says, "Thanks! Promise I won't make too many calls on it or nothing." Then he pauses again at the more serious side of the conversation, and nods a little, looking down. "Scariest thing ever. But…" He bites his lip, and looks back up. "I'm *glad* ya weren't there. If ya were, ya mighta been…" He trails off, and just nods a little to the last question.

"I know you'll use it responsibly," Kory assures Cam. "And that's sweet of you." She's genuinely touched that he is showing concern for her safety. Particularly given Aidan gave her his, equally graphic, take on how bad things were. "Well, we don't need to worry about it too much. It's over, and one way or another, we're gonna make sure you stay safe. " She heads over to the comfy chair reading section and has a seat, gesturing for Cam to join her.

Cam follows Kory over to the section, taking a seat on a chair next to Kory's. "Really? How?" Yeah, before the other day, he was never concerned about his safety. Not anymore. This attack has shaken him quite a bit.

"Well, there are a few things we can do," Kory explains. "We can make sure there's an adult with you so you're not ever caught by yourself in a situation like that again. And there's the phone, which you can also use to call 9-1-1 if you need to. I could get you a Metro Card too, so you always have transportation." It's passive, but there's not a lot that can be done against an acid-handed woman.

Cam hesitates at that first suggestion, and asks, "The adult thing… that's like for big things like the magic show, right? Not *all* the time?" Even as scared as he is, that seems to go against the grain. But, he says, "Those other ideas are cool."

"Right. I know you've been on your own for a good bit already," Kory nods solemnly at Cam, making sure to emphasize she knows how he's been making it on his own so far. "…but anytime you want a grownup around, we can work something out. Another idea I have…well, that depends on you."

Cam nods, reassured at that clarification and smiles, "Ok, that's cool then. Sometimes, yeah." Then he looks up to Kory again at the last, "What's the idea?"

Kory takes a deep breath. "Well…can I ask you a personal question?" she asks, gently.

Cam looks up to Kory curiously, but nods a little bit, "Ok." Maybe the slightest bit hesitant, but trusting Kory enough that he agrees.

Kory tilts down and looks Cam in the eye. "…this is gonna sound silly if I'm mistaken, but…" She pauses to make sure the store remains empty before she proceeds with the question. "Cam, can you do something most kids your age can't do? Something really unusual?"

And *that* was not the question Cam expected. His eyes widen and he asks, immediately, "How did you…" he cuts himself off, biting his lip. He doesn't try to cover his slip, though, nodding a little and looking at the floor.

Kory reaches out to touch his chin with her fingertips and lift his face so he's looking back at her. "Somebody said something that made me think, is all," she explains, smiling warmly at him. "And for the record?" She leans in to whisper in his ear, taking her hand down once he's looking at her. "So can I."

Cam looks up to Kory a moment, and then visibly relaxes. Smiling, he asks, "Really? What can you do?" He's suddenly a lot less nervous and shy once Kory's said she can too.

Kory smiles as Cam relaxes. "My ability's not all that cool," she tells him, still keeping the voice low in case a customer should walk in. "I only need 2 hours of sleep a night…and…I can get inside people's dreams if I want. Not as cool as anything the X-Men can do, I know." She rolls her eyes a little, as if disappointed herself that her powers aren't cooler. "What about you?"

Cam shakes his head quickly and says, "That sounds really cool." At the question he hesitates, and then says, "Can I have a glass of water, please?"

"Really? You think?" Kory beams. She doesn't often get the chance to talk about her ability, and the last few times it's all been about a subject that wigs her out. So it's nice to get that reaction. "Of course you can. Be right back." She heads into the tiny little employee break area and returns with a cup of water, one of those collectible plastic ones you can get at some stores. This one has Jar-Jar on it. "Here you go."

Cam grins as he sees what's on the cup, "Cool." Then he says, "Thanks." He does take a sip, but just a sip. He glances around to make sure the store's empty, and then looks back to the glass. Gently, he touches his finger to the top of the water. At first, nothing happens, and then the air around Cam grows quite cold, and in an instant, the water's frozen into a cup full of ice.

Kory watches, wide-eyed. And when he actually displays his ability, she laughs, sitting back down, and says, "Now that is what I call cool." Lame joke, yeah, but still accurate. "Nice. No wonder Iceman's your favourite." She considers the ice cup for a minute. "I've got some friends who can do stuff too. Acquaintances, really. But that's why I got so sick last night. …That acid woman? I knew who she was from a dream I was in a few weeks ago." She squeezes her eyes shut and looks at her lap. "I hoped somebody had done something about her before this."

Cam grins at the praise, lame though the joke might be. "Thanks. I can make ice out of nothing too, but it's harder. Happens more when I don't want it to than when I do." He blinks and then says softly, "Oh. I dunno who could stop her."

"I have a friend who might be able to," Kory says. "I just have to get back in touch with him and let him know. Though he might know already. And if he does, he's probably already on her trail." She thinks this over for a second, then nods, pensively. "I bet he is." As for Cam's control problem, she mulls that over. "Maybe we could find someplace for you to practice."

Cam brightens again at the prospect of someone able to stop Mandy. "Really? Can I meet him?" Then he smiles more at the last and says, "That'd be great! I try to practice now, but it's hard, doing it so nobody sees."

"I have to see about getting in touch with him, but sure," Kory says. "I bet he'd like you a lot. And yeah, I have a friend who has a place where people like us go to study our abilities. I'm sure she'd rather you learn how to use your ability, so you can protect yourself." She nods pensively. "I wonder if the guys would let us borrow Ickle Ronniekins. People would probably let you alone too with him around."

Cam's eyes widen a little, "Really? There's a place like that?" He hesitates then, and says, "Um… this guy I met, who saw my powers, he said there's people who'd kidnap me and do experiments on me, and make me do stuff I didn't want, if they found out about my powers."

"Not this place," Kory tells Cam. "It's run by somebody I know and Lee knows. I went in and had a long talk with her and then I walked back out, and nobody did anything to me. Nobody asked me to do anything I didn't want to do. So there must be some other people who do that." She shivers, though, at the idea. "I can see why that'd be scary to you, though. I don't like the idea either. But tell you what. I'll check it out and make sure it's not like the scary place before I bring you. How's that?"

Cam nods a little, and says, "Don't wanna be locked up, and 'cept for the other day, don't like hospitals. 'Specially don't want something that's like both." He then nods quickly to the offer and smiles again, "Ok." Then he asks, "How many people… like us, do ya know?"

"Me either," Kory says, quite seriously. "Well, aside from you? Three, that I know of for sure. And one I think, but he won't tell me yes or no. But now that you told me about the prison-hospital place, maybe he's scared to. And I guess I can't blame him. That does sound scary." She wrinkles her nose. "The world is a whole lot more complicated these days. Too bad we don't have a kind old Professor X to look out for us. So we have to look out for ourselves, and each other."

Cam blinks, "Wow. There must be a bunch of us… but guess ya know lotsa people too, with a store like this, huh?" Then he nods a little and says, "Yeah. For sure." He considers, then asks, "Mr. Jones, does he know about powers?"

"Well, I'm starting to. I didn't plan to run this store, but I took over as a favor to Mr. Jones, because his sister's out of state. And he doesn't really do comics. You know how he kinda turns his nose up." She nods, though the set of her mouth indicates the yes answer isn't positive, as such. "He does, I think. But I also think he doesn't all the way believe it. Remember how I said his dad paid more attention to comics and the store than they did to him? It's all mixed up in there somewhere. So I wouldn't mention it to him unless you wanna hear him get all cranky."

Cam ohs, nodding again and says, "I won't, then." Then he says, "Hope I can go practice where ya said. I almost been caught a few times at school, when I made ice or froze water by accident."

"I'm sorry, I wish I could help you with that," Kory says, genuinely worried for him. "But my power only works if people around me are sleeping, so I had a lot of chances to learn control because my whole family all sleeps, and I didn't want to go in their dreams willy-nilly." She shrugs. "My brother's the only person in my family who knows, though."

Cam ohs, and then says, "You, and Aidan, and Micah and Niki are the only ones who know about me, 'sides that guy I said. Aiden and Micah and Niki all saw me use my powers. When my shoulder got burnt I… I froze it, trying to get it to stop."

"Well, that was reflex," Kory says, ruffling Cam's hair; and her eyes widen with sudden realization as Cam lists names. "If I were burning up, I'd want to make it stop by cooling it off fast too. You probably stopped yourself from getting a much worse burn, too. And I don't know for sure, but I think Ms. Niki is one of us too." She looks a little sad. "That dream I told you about? The acid woman dream? Ms. Niki was in that, too. And she was trying to protect Micah. Aiden might be, too. That's who made me wonder if you were special."

Cam blinks, "Really? Wow. Think the dream was about last night? Niki wasn't there before Micah called her, she came in to get him and just.. found me. Glad she did."

"No," Kory says, shaking her head. "It wasn't about the magic show. It was a different night. And it hasn't happened yet. But we don't want it to happen, either." Kory reaches over and gathers Cam into another hug. "If the thing I saw in the dream came true, it would be …really terrible."

Cam blinks at the sudden hug, though he returns it. He bites his lip a moment, and then says, "What'd you see?" He sounds a bit nervous asking, but curious at the same time.

Kory is silent for a long minute, considering how to phrase her answer. He's just a kid, already scared, and the whole thing scared her to witness it. "Let's just say that scary acid person does a whole lot worse things to Ms. Niki, and Micah, and other people we know and care about." Permanent things, but she doesn't elaborate on that. "But Peter says if it hasn't happened yet, we can do things to prevent it. I just don't know what things yet."

Cam's eyes widen and he nods quickly, "Can't let that happen! That Peter, that the guy who's trying to stop her? Or the guy that had the dream ya saw?"

"The dream was …" Kory tries to figure out how to explain it. She lets go of Cam, and settles back in the chair. "Usually, I can get in the dream of one person and just one. But the night I got in this dream, it was like a bunch of people were dreaming, and I was the connection between all the dreams." She nods, though, sitting back up. "Peter's the one trying to stop her. And he says he has friends who can help. You and me, with our cool-but-not-so-great-in-a-fight powers, we'll just have to do support from the sidelines, huh?"

Cam nods quickly to that and says, "Yeah." He grins and says, "I can do some things in a fight, like ice up the ground, or give someone frostbite." Then more seriously adds, "But that ain't much against someone like her."

"It can be if you're willing to fight dirty," Kory says, seriously. "But when I say dirty, I mean really dirty." She swallows hard. "You're only eleven. You shouldn't have to think about fighting, let alone fighting dirty, against anybody but another eleven year old."

Cam frowns a bit at that and says, a little defensively, "I'm twelve and a half." A long way from eleven as far as he's concerned. Then, though, he nods a bit and says, "Know what ya mean, I guess."

"Excuse me," Kory corrects, sheepishly, holding up her hands to indicate she hadn't meant to insult him by getting his age wrong. "You're almost thirteen. But still. You should be thinking about school and playing sports and stuff. Not how to stop a scary person."

Cam comments, grinning, "That's kinda part of what ya think about at school, ya know." Then more seriously says, "I guess. I sure don't wanna fight her. Maybe when I'm bigger and my powers're better."

Kory smiles. "You know what I meant, smarty pants," she teases affectionately. But the seriousness reasserts. "Exactly. I don't think anybody wants to fight her, but somebody will have to or else she's just gonna keep doing what she did the other night and people will continue getting hurt or worse. But hey, some good came out of it. At least you know your 'big sister'" airquotes, even, "…has more in common with you than you thought, huh?" She smiles again, pleased to have this connection with Cam herself.

Cam nods quickly again with a smile back up to Kory, "Yeah! I never… I mean, never been able to talk to nobody about it before. Even my mom and dad, they didn't know."

"Well, now we have each other, and you can talk to me anytime, okay?" Kory beams down at Cam. "I said I'd be a big sister to you if you wanted, and I meant it."

Cam nods quickly again, smiling still, "Yeah! Thanks." Not quite sure what more to say, but he seems very happy for this. He then asks, "That place ya talked about, where I could practce… what's it called?"

"Uh-uh," Kory wags a finger, but not unkindly. "When I'm sure it's safe, then I'll tell you. I wanna make sure it's not the sort of place you were worried about. And I don't want you getting yourself in trouble trying to figre it out. Deal?" She offers him the pinky swear gesture.

Cam considers, and then nods, grinning again as he meets the pinky swear. "Deal." Then he says, "Hope it isn't like that, though. Kinda wanna meet more like us."

"You and me both, buddy," Kory links her pinky with his. "C'mon. You didn't get any pizza last night 'cause you weren't feeling well. How 'bout we grab a bite now?" The store has been super-slow, and they close early on Sundays anyway.

Cam brightens at that and nods emphatically, "Yeah, please?" He hops back to his feet again and grins back to Kory, but waiting to follow her.

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