2010 11 25 The Church Mouse Meets The Spider

Log Title:
The Church Mouse Meets the Spider

Karma and Black Widow

IC Date:

NYC Church

Brief log summary::
Karma meets Black Widow


There is no TS in this log::

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It's early afternoon. The weather seems cold, brisk and perhaps to some crazy people, bracing. The air already has a winter bite to it and because of this, most people have bundled up against the cold. Xi'an is no different. Over her assembled outfit for the day she wears a knee-length heavy woolen coat. Currently Xi'an is just stepping out of the one of the many Churches of New York City, a vaguely cross expression twisting her features.

She's buttoning her coat one handed, as she clearly speaks into a cellphone, "Oui, Uncle. I understand. Un instant - one moment - " She states as she digs through a small purse at her side. After a minute or two she finds a pen and a scrap of paper, "All right, I am ready." And with that said she starts to scribble down whatever instructions she's receiving over the phone.

Overhead, someone in far less civilian clothing is watching the area. Black Widow was doing some patrolling, but now she's just sitting and enjoying people watching. It's a busy time of year, after all, and the sidewalks are pretty crowded. She's attentive, of course. There are still people out there who wish others ill. Or are just selfish. Really, she's never entirely off-duty.

It might be wrong to sit on the church, but Gd can come tell her if he minds. She's not hard to notice, really. Some who have point her way and comment to whomever they're with. She's been an Avenger for years now, after all. She's known, and the tourists are interested in seeing a real hero, too.

The conversation lasts a minute or two more before Xi'an is closing her cellphone with a hard snap. The offending piece of technology is then shoved ruthlessly in her purse as she remarks softly. "Monstre." The pen is then tucked back into her purse as well, though the piece of paper is held in her hand as she obediently memorizes the address. "This arrangement will not be much longer, Uncle. I promise you that."

Glancing at the Church doors with perhaps a bit of guilt, the dark-haired girl starts down the steps. She will return to the Church later and make amends then. As she steps off the last steps a strong gust of wind batters the small form of Xi'an and with almost a mind of its own, it rips the small scrap of paper out of her fingers and lifts it upwards into the sky. "Non!" But already it's too late as the paper is quickly lifted out of her reach. As she watches the little bit of paper flutter upward with the wind, Xi'an of course, can't help but notice the form upward on the Church. Brows pinch low for a moment as she tries to puzzle out if she knows who that is up there. Friend or foe. Or possibly friend she doesn't want to see yet.

Distress comes in many forms, the world over. Sometimes there are children in danger. Sometimes there are natural disasters to try to head off. Sometimes it's just damage control after something bad has happened. Sometimes, it's just losing an important scrap of paper.

Natasha isn't doing anything important at the moment. At least, nothing that would be disrupted by a simple good deed. It takes her only a moment to calculate how best to manage it, and then she's into the air towards the errant note. It's captured easily, and the drop is well practiced. She's done a lot of dropping over the years. She's good at the landing.

While Xi'an was distressed by the loss of the note or rather more importantly the contents upon the note, she by no means, expected the Black Widow to snatch her note from the air and return it to her. So when the other taller woman lands upon the ground, Xi'an's expression is somewhat surprised. It's also at this point that Xi'an realizes who Natasha is. Xi'an may never had any true dealings with the Avengers, or rather this one in particular, but Xi'an realizes who she is at least.

"Bonjour, madame." Xi'an hesitantly says, even as she furtively glances around to see how many people have stopped to gawk. Of course, there's quite a few gawkers. "Merci beaucoup, thank you, for rescuing the note."

There are indeed gawkers, as Black Widow hands the paper back to its owner. "De rien." she replies. "I know it's not saving the world, but some days it's the little things, right?" she says then with only a trace of an accent to her English. Those watching and taking pictures get a smile and wave. She's deputy leader of the Avengers. She's used to the attention.

The piece of paper is quickly folded and tucked into the palm of her hand, where it is then slid into the pocket of her coat. It's not getting away a second time. At Black Widow's answer in French, Xi'an can't help but smile, "Vous parlez Francais. You speak French. It has been a long time since I have met anyone to converse with in French. Sometimes I do wonder if languages are becoming a dying art." Still she does answer mostly in English, just in case Widow's French is rusty.

As the gawkers pull out the cameras to take the pictures, Xi'an quickly steps a few paces away from the Avenger, obviously not wanting to be in the picture. She'll even go so far as to turn her face a bit away from the amateur photogs. When the pictures seemed to have slowed she does remark to the Widow's first statement, "And oui, sometimes it is the little things that make it worthwhile. Though I am sure if you stay here long enough you will have a chance to capture a purse thief or two." With holiday shopping comes would-be purse thieves, after all.

Black Widow is, in fact, entirely comfortable speaking in french. She has little accent there too, as she ships easily and fluently into something other than english. "I find it useful to be able to communicate well in many places." It was a very important skill as a spy, certainly.

Natasha purses her lips then, watching the apparent shyness of the woman. She's more curious as to whether there more to it than just shyness, watching the body language as well. She doesn't let much of that curiosity show though, and replies "I've no doubt of that. I've caught a few so far. Little things, though. I put the fear of me into them, and sent them off to become better people. Or else." There's a faint smile with that.

Xi'an's body language is pretty closed down, though someone who's good at reading others, could probably see both the shyness, and the anxiety while the pictures are being taken. The anxiety is telegraphed through the movement of her hands being clasped tightly together before her, and while the cameras may have slowed now and then, Xi'an will still keep an observant eye out for them.

"You are the Black Widow, yes? I am Xi'an Coy Manh." Most people do not give their full name, but it's something that is cultural for Xi'an. "I can see why they would fear you." She offers another faint smile, with perhaps a bit of humor tinged to it, "I am certain, for a few days at least, they will be very pious people." Her dark eyes can't help but flick towards the Church, as if to underscore her words.

There's a quiet 'mmm' from Natasha. "I am the Black Widow, yes." she says, then muses aloud "A few days can make a big difference. And if I catch them again I will be far less lenient." Far, far less. Once upon a time she wouldn't have given them a second chance. She's softened. She blames Steve.

She continues to regard Xi'an, then observes "You don't care to be photographed?" She continues in french, of course. No reason to let others be any more nosy than necessary. "Lots don't. Technology is so intrusive these days, isn't it?"

At the Widow's words, Xi'an cants her head slightly to the side, as an almost morose expression crosses her features now. "True, a few days can make a difference." Shifting slightly she'll even go so far as to add, "There are times you cannot help what you must do."

At the mention of the cameras and intrusive technology, Xi'an looks perhaps a bit flightly, "I - I cannot say I do." She is not made for this game her Uncle plays, and the one she must play to make certain her friends do not find her, "I cannot understand how you can deal with it every day. It would make me feel as if I had no privacy whatsoever."

"I have pretty much no privacy." Natasha replies. She's pretty much used to it. "On the other hand, the perks are nice." More or less. She could stand a little more privacy, but she had plenty for decades. She can do without for one or two. She continues to watch the other woman, interested as she reacts to the question of being photographed. "Hm." She lets Xi'an take that as she will.

Realizing that perhaps she has shown too much, Xi'an takes a mental step back and forces herself to calm down, and once her calm mask is back in place, she asks, "Perks? I do not see what perks you have." Even as a New Mutant, though that was slightly different than being an Avenger, Xi'an was not a fan of being photographed, or having her non-hero persona matched to her costumed persona. Too dangerous for the family, and that thought prompts another question, "Do you not worry about family?" Though perhaps that's an impolite question, but still Xi'an asks it.

Aha. Family. Something that can be used against anyone. Almost anyone. "What family?" The only realm family she has are the Avengers, and she doesn't have to worry about them. Much. Not that she doesn't care or worry. Sometimes they lose someone. But they're certainly not as helpless as most of the rest of the population. "Why, are you worried about family?" She's clever, yes. And terribly interested. Why is there never a crime going on when you need one?

Widow's answer prompts Xi'an to blink, looking slightly startled. 'What family?' That's a concept that perhaps boggles the young Vietnamese woman somewhat - she has always had responsibilities for her family. Whether it was from her twin brother, or her younger siblings, there is family and almost nothing else for Xi'an.

At Widow's second question, Xi'an realizes her error. She has opened herself up to questions that she does not want to answer. Still, while she's not a great liar, she will hedge her lies with truth and non-truth. "Does not everyone worry about family? I can only imagine what might happen should an enemy figure out how to use family against heroes. I could not live with that." Which is true, and false, since she's living with it currently. Somehow she will find her sister and brother.

There's a slight shrug of one shoulder, then Black Widow replies "Every hero with relationships takes that risk, in order to persue something important. Justice. Conscience. A better, stronger world. Or, they don't take that risk and watch the world suffer when they could make a difference. It's not an easy choice, but it's a necessary one." Her life is a little black and white. Then again, she doesn't have family.

Xi'an can't help but look troubled at Black Widow's words, perhaps because it hits a little too close to home for her comfort. "Perhaps." Xi'an admits, though there is no perhaps about it, "I think that may be a simplistic view of the situation, but as a whole, you are right." Her clasped hands tighten until the knuckles stand out in relief, "There are times however all you can do is watch even though you wish to change it yourself." But then there are also times where you can no longer abide by what the people are doing around you, and have to force change as well. Shaking her head at that internal thought Xi'an says, "Thank you again - for rescuing the paper." Though now she wishes it would just disappear, as it feels literally like it's burning a hole in her pocket. "Perhaps we will meet again, though, I do hope it is not in any sort of situation where you would need to rescue me." She flashes a faint smile at that.

If there's one thing Black Widow does well, it's aim her shots. "The world's a more simple place than we make it. There's right, and there's wrong. And there's what each of us chooses to do about that wrong. I think it just comes down to fear. That's a simple thing, too." It must be nice to live in her world. It's not the world most have to live in, though. Then she smiles, and nods. "You're welcome. And I hope we do. Good luck." She doesn't clarify what she thinks Xi'an might need good luck for, though.

Another troubled look is aimed towards Black Widow, but Xi'an cannot say much more or else she'll reveal the main issues in her life. "Perhaps. I wish for simplicity, I know that." States the Vietnamese woman and then she switches to a mixture of English and French again. "Merci, again, Madame. Thank you for the well wishes. I hope you and what family you have have a good holiday and a safe one as well. Au revoir."

And with that said Xi'an is quick to step off of the last step of the Church, and merge in with the flow of traffic, disappearing into the crowded streets of New York City.

The End

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