Not a Day at the Beach

Brief Title:

Characters:
Mercury and Sandman

Scene Runner/Watcher:

IC Date:
11/03/12 13:16

Location:
Danger Room - Sublevel - Xavier Mansion

Summary:
Sandman meets Mercury and teaches her a lesson in the Danger Room.

Social or Plot:

TS:
No

Log:
It is Saturday afternoon and a message has gone out to all Avengers/Xavier students that a session will be run in the Danger Room for anyone seeking some extra help with their powers or just wanted another session. For those who enter, the room is empty, just it’s large giant circular room….though on the floor seems to be small piles of sand.

Mercury steps into the 'room', already wearing her combat outfit, and she has to scratch her head, "A bare room?" she asks, confused. Usually the place is a normal room or even an outside setting, but a blank room? First time. "Ok so what should we do?" the metallic girl asks, rubbing the back of her head.
The pile of sand closest to her forms into a small hand and slinks across the floor and attempts to grab at her foot/ankle. The other piles of sand seem to shift and form into various little men wielding different types of bladed sand weapons, maces, knives, swords. There is a total of six little sandmen no more than 6 inches high as they run towards Mercury. A disembodied voice rings out, “The point of today’s session is to survive and adapt. And even though it is sand, it will still hurt, so I suggest you defend yourself.”

Mercury blinks when she sees the sand forms a hand that tries to go for her ankle, but she jumps away, "Eep!" she says, eyes wide, and when she sees the other little men forming out of the sand, she blinks again, "Ok, that is creepy." she says, jumping away again when another little man tries to take a swing at her ankle, and she tries to kick it, wondering if they'll just explode in sand or fly away with her kick.

With her kick, the little sandman does explode into a sand cloud, but then quickly begins to reform a few feet away as the other ones continue to rush forward. One swings a mace at her other ankle while one with a sword for an arm leaps up aiming the sword for her stomach. “Yeah, it’s creepy. The world we live in ain’t so nice, Mercury.” The disembodied voice offers in response.

Mercury doesn't recognize the voice speaking to her. She figures it's probably one of the teachers using a modulator off in the control room. "Well, as far as I know, there are no 'Sand Gnomes' anywhere on the--" and she forms her right hand into a hammer-shape and smashes one sand gnome to paste, "Planet!" and then she smashes another gnome with her other hand, also in hammer shape.

Both sand gnomes burst into sand clouds when Mercury’s hammer hands strike them. “Nice.” The disembodied voice shouts revealing a pleased tone with her ability. The sand clouds fall back and all remaining piles of sand suddenly scatter and fly up in the room forming into one larger humanoid shape. Within seconds, one large sandman appears and begins to change the sand to flesh and bone. Sandman finally reveals himself, “So you can shape your body into different shapes too, huh.” Sandman smiles and almost chuckles when he is fully formed now, “I am Sandman, Avenger.”

Mercury notices the clouds that were sand gnomes until moments ago start drifting toward the same point, and when the sand on the floor starts to flow toward that same point, she almost loses her balance, but she quickly recovers. She gets in position for a fight when she sees a taller sand figure being sculpted, and she clenches her fists. When said sand form turns flesh-and-blood, she blinks, "Buh?" Shocked, yes. "You're Sandman? You're not a DR simulation?" she asks, blinking again, completely missing the compliment she just got on her abilities.

“Yeah, I am the real Sandman. I’m an Avenger and I figure I would help out here at the school from time to time. I heard a little about you, so I thought I would see what you could do.” He smiles as his arms turn from flesh to sand and begin to mimic various shapes, “We got similar abilities. Different, but similar and from what I see. None of the X-Men got powers like us.”

Mercury blinks again, "One of the Avengers?" she asks, then she goes in silence as something hits her. "Does that mean... I was standing on your body a few seconds ago?" she asks, dreading the answer almost more than she is curious. "But, um... yeah, kind of similar, I guess." she rubs the back of her head, not sure how to respond.

“Yeah. I’m right up with Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor. And yes, you were stepping on me. Not too worry, my body is different because I can change it to whatever as long as I stay in sand form.” Sandman forms arm into a sand rifle and points it at Mercury, “So let’s see what else you can.” The trigger on the sand rifle clicks off.

Mercury watches Sandman shape one of his arms into a sand rifle and point it at her. When he makes a mention of firing said rifle at her, she gasps and brings her arms up to cover her face, her arms forming an 'X' position. Yep. Nothing spectacular or anything, she just covers her face.

A sand bullet flies out and inches from Mercury’s crossed arms the bullet stops midair and seems to hang there as Sandman sighs, “An X with your arms. . . .girl, you can shape yourself into anything. I get that yer still a kid, but you gotta be ready for anything. Sandman backs away a moment as the bullet continues to hang mid air. “Ok, show me what you got. You come at me. I know you can do hammers, but what else ya got.”

Mercury peeks from behind her arms, and notices the bullet just hovering there, and she lowers her arms. Confused, she reaches to lightly poke said bullet before looking at Sandman, "Have they told you that I'm like this for only, I don't know, a few months?" she arches one eyebrow at him. But when asked to fight him with all she had, she raises her hands a bit, "Whoa, one thing is to go against the Dr's constructs, Mr. Sandman, but another is to go against another hero..." she says, hesitant.

“A few months, and hammers is all you can do. . .good thing I am here. When I first got my powers, within days I was making all kinds of shapes. Time to step up your training.” Sandman smiles, “And not to worry. . .I can handle myself. I have fought the Hulk, the Thing, and a bunch of others.” He remains completely still and waits for her to attack him.


Mercury thinks about it for a moment, but if the guy before her did face the Hulk and the Thing, that means he can at LEAST take a punch, she figures, and so she nods, and decides to try it. She starts running toward Sandman with her arms extended to her sides, and her hands clench, and reform into ball-shaped blunt maces, and her arms seem to elongate a bit as she rears her right hand for a 'punch' toward Sandman's belly.

The mace shaped punch connect with Sandman’s stomach which absorbs the blow and goes into and through stomach as sand flies around forming a hole when the punch would have connected. “Nice. So you can stretch too. And there was some force behind that. He takes a step back and as he does so the hole in his chest refills with sand and then turn into flesh. “Alright, so you can do pretty solid weapon. Good. Me too.” He continues taking steps back until he is about 5 feet away from her. “Alright, try to hit me again, but only extend your arms. . .let’s see if you can reach me.”

Mercury is pretty shocked when Sandman's stomach blows into sand with her punch. Sure, it was solid metal punch, but the force wasn't much stronger than a normal person's. "Ack, sorry!" she says by reflex as she jumps back when she sees that wide hole on the man's belly. Almost cartoonishly so. "That... didn't hurt?" she asks in shock as she blinks slowly, pointing at that hole that slowly closes. When asked to reach him, she arches one eyebrow, "You want me to.. what? Walk up to you?"

“Yeah, it didn’t jurt anything. Trust me. You’re no Thor.” Sandman starts to laugh and then ahems, “No, don’t walk to me. Keep your feet firmly planted in the ground and elongate your arms. Stretch em out as far as you can and hit me again. And try a different shape. No hammers or maces.” Sandman points to his cheek, “Aim right fer my face.”

Mercury rubs her head. No maces or hammers. She's kinda at loss on what shape to use, but after a few moments, she just shrugs at that, "Well... ok, I guess." she says, and looks at Sandman, trying to judge distance. Roughly five feet, she figures, and she frowns a bit. Her right hand rears back as she closes her fist, and then she throws her fist forward, her arm elongating to let her fist travel toward Sandman's chest. If she connects, it'll be... a punch. A metal punch, but a punch, nonetheless.

The fist connects and Sandman lets it bounce off his chest. He looks down and back at Mercury, “Ok you can stretch. But I feel like you are holding back.” Sandman rubs his stomach as he walks over to Mercury “Ok, kid. I didn’t grow up as a mutant and I was already an adult and a jerk when I got my sand powers. But I feel like you keep holding back. We’re in a room called the Danger Room. You are allowed to let loose and again, I can take whatever ya got. If you keep holding back, at least against me, then there is no room for growth or progress with yer powers.” He sighs a bit as he holds out his right hand. IT begins to take different shapes and less than a second takes another shape then another and another. “Keep up with me. See how quick and fast and different your shapes can get.” The shapes are basic and not complicated. Squares, Circles, triangles, etc.

Mercury rubs the back of her head after she pulls her arm back, "Well... there were other forms I could use, but... it'd just screw up with aerodynamics, making it hard to keep it flying in a straight line..." she says. It's true, she is holding back, though. As Sandman extends his hand, so does she, but while he takes not even a second to shift through forms, Mercury takes at least three seconds to shift through them, sometimes taking up to six seconds for the more complicated choices, the girl frowning as she seems to be focusing hard. If she could sweat, she'd be sweating right now.

Despite the lag in time, Mercury is able to match Sandman’s shapes and so a smile forms on his face. “Alright alright. You did the best ya could. “ With that his hand stops making shapes and returns to flesh. He then looks up to the control booth, “Alright, um Danger Room, switch to beach setting.” The two heroes find themselves in darkness and then standing on a beach. The Danger Room simulates a typical beach authentically. As waves crash on the shore and wind blows sand about. With the setting changed, “Ok. I think you were startin’ to get a bit frustrated. So we are done for today, but I figure we should talk or something. You hold back. And to be honest, I know squat about you or teaching. So tell me yer story and what afraid and stuff? So we know how to help ya.”

Mercury seems to let out a sigh of relief when the exercise is over, and her hand changes back to normal and she flexes her fingers for a moment before looking back at Sandman just as the scenario changes to a beach. A beach full of sand. Oh-oh. But then she's asked about how her powers started, and she tilts her head to the side for a moment, "Well... My name is Cessily Kincaid, and I was just a simple cheerleader back at high school when I woke up one day and, as I was getting ready for school, I felt something cool on my skin, and a look on the mirror showed this metal slowly covering my body. When I got fully engulfed in it, it felt like I was having trouble standing, my bones felt like jelly...”

Nodding his head as he listens, Sandman scratches his chin as he tries to figure out what to say and attempt to display empathy. While listening to her, little sand castles are being built in the background and more shapes are sprouting from the ground as he absent-mindedly uses his powers. “Wow, that has to got to suck. Being a cheerleader, I beat you were all popular and stuff and then suddenly being a mutant. And growing that liquid metal over yer body. How did yer friends an family react?”

"Not... in a nice way." Mercury responds, rubbing the back of her neck and sighing softly. "My parents were horrified when they saw what happened to me and were all too happy to send me to the X-school." she says, shaking her head softly. "I don't think they even listened when Jean Grey told them it's a school for mutants to learn about their powers. I could literally see their eyes light up when they heard 'boarding school', though. I guess it's the next best thing to get rid of your mutant daughter short of disowning her."

“Well, no offense, but your parents sound like jerks Good riddance, I say. You still love em, but you are better off here than with them.” Sandman speaks bluntly and uncouthly. “So do you hate being a mutant? Do you think you can handle it? What are you afraid of?” He asks a lot of questions, but is trying to learn from the student to figure out the best way to help her.

Mercury frowns at Sandman at his harsh words toward her (admittedly bigot) parents. "Hey! They're still my parents, and I still love them! I still have hope that they'll one day learn that I'm still their daughter!" She says, rather angrily. If this was DC, pretty sure a blue power ring would come for her finger at this moment. Anyways. She closes her eyes and takes a couple breaths to calm down from that. "... No, I don't hate being a mutant." she says, still frowning a bit.

“Yeah well enough about your parents. So if you don’t hate being a mutant, then what are you afraid of? If you like being a mutant and using your powers, then why hold back? If there is anyone you shouldn’t hold back against, it’s me. . .and your other teachers, but in particular me.” Sandman smiles, “I bet there is whole lot more you’ll be able to do. The X-Men and Avengers have been doing this stuff for awhile. You’re in good hands so try not to be too afraid”

Mercury ums at that, rubbing the back of her head, "I... don't know? I guess I'm not much creative." she says and shrugs gently at that. "Controlling my shape is also kinda hard to do. I have to actually focus on the shape to keep myself that way. And even the way I am right now, too."

“Yeah that can be tough. When I first had my power. It was hard for me to concentrate to keep my sand form together and there have been a couple of crazy times when I got stuck as apile of sand or in a vacuum. And there was one crazy time when I got trapped with Hydro-Man.” Sandman shivers, “It’s with training and time that you sorta get over that. I mean it doesn’t do much because it sucks until you get to that point, but when you do. It’ll all be worth it.” Sandman tries to be counseling type, but is not used to it.

Mercury blinks, "Trapped?" she asks, watching Sandman shiver, and she scratches her head as she wonders how bad of a peson this Hydro-Man must be. But anyways. "And, um, I know about the training, and I do train every day. "It's just that things go slow, unfortunately. It's not an ability easy to master." she says, and she looks at her hands, then at Sandman. It can be terrifying to lose yourself in it."

“Very true. Or being lost in someone else.” Sandman sighs. But if he is to adjust to the new role of helping out at the school, then sharing is one way of modeling for the students. “I used to be a villain when I first started. So I wasn’t really too scared to use my powers and I learned quicker than most. But in being a villain you end up teaming up with a lot unsavory types. Hydro-Man works with water what I do with sand. When sand and water mix they become mud. We ended up getting merged into this giant mud monster thing. IT took months to separate. It was traumatic to say the least.”

Mercury blinks at the story and shudders at it as well, "Y-yeah.. I can see how that can be.. unpleasant." she says, and purses her lips for a moment as she considers a few things in her mind. "All I always wished when this started is that this was a bad dream that I couldn't wake up from." she says softly, but then she shrugs, "Today... well, I still wish my parents still loved me, but I made friends, and these powers are kinda cool, I admit."

“Well hopefully your parents will come to their senses.” That is all he says regarding her parents. When she continues speaking, he smiles in that he is glad he does not have to share anymore himself and that she is sharing more. “That is the best attitude to have.” He offers with a smile. He then looks up to where the observation booth should be and speaks a command and the room returns to normal.

Mercury watches as the Danger Room is returned to normal, the simulation ending, "Thanks." she says, smiling a bit, before looking around, "I take it our time is up?" she asks, looking again at Sandman. "Can I ask you something, Mr. Sandman? What was it that made you decide to no longer be a villain, and become a hero?" she asks, smiling a bit.

Sandman smiles and nods, “Yes, our time is up.” He then pauses as she asks her question and thinks about the answer. There was a lot going on at that point in his life, but he simply says, “I got tired of getting beat.” He chuckles, “In all seriousness that was just part of it. It is a complicated decision, but ultimately, I wasn’t happy being a bad guy. Being a hero isn’t always happy either especially when my own teammates don’t trust me, but. . .” He sighs again. “Ok how about a deal. I’ll go into more detail about it at our next training session. If you promise to not hold back at training. . .at least against me?”

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