Striking a DealMature

"Storm, I don't understand!"  I shouted.  I hadn't meant to raise my voice, but it happened all the same.

"Freya, you need to learn to control your emotions.  I think that this group exercise will really help you,"  I told her.

"You know, you could have just written me a different way, Keegan!"  The way I sneered the author's name made her shiver; I reveled in the knowledge that my power caused them fear.  They should be afraid of me.

"But I didn't, because the story wouldn't be the same."  Keegan replied as calmly as she could.  "You know, you could've just imagined that this never happened.  I know you, Freya.   You're curious.  You want to learn control."

I glared at her, hating that she was right.  "Here's a deal,"  she continued.  "If it becomes apparent that this group exercise--"

"Therapy"  I corrected.

"This therapy,"  she rephrased.  "If it doesn't work, you won't have to go again.  You can stay here and we'll work out an alternative form of training.  Deal?"

I considered the deal and carefully weighed the pros and cons in my head.  Even though I had the power, I didn't like altering reality to conform to my imagination.  If everything could be handed to me, what was the point in this fight for survival? "Without the struggle, there can be no triumph,"  or something like that.  I couldn't remember who said it, but it hit home for sure.  

"Deal," I told them after a minute had passed.

They nodded their approval at my decision, and Storm directed me to the black car that waited outside the gate at  Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters

He kept his permanent scowl in place, but his eyes softened as he opened the door for me.

Thirty minutes later, Wolverine was pulling into a parking space inside of a dull, gray building.

"You know how to take care of yourself, but still.  Be careful."  He stared at me with hard eyes, and I nodded.  His voice was gruff, but kind and I knew that he meant well.

"Wish me luck."  Before he could reply, I got out and went inside the building.

____________________________________________________

Inside the room, there was a circle of chairs.  Some were filled, some were empty.  I counted them to distract myself from the mean glares I got from some of the occupants.

I stood against a wall in the back, facing the man at the head of the circle.  He wore a wide smile, his dark skin crinkling around his eyes.  

"Hello, Freya.  Please, have a seat over here with the rest of us,"  the man said, gesturing towards the chair near a girl with black hair and many scars.  I idly imagined what she would look like without scars, and discerned that the girl would be stunningly beautiful without them.  However, I could sense that she was the type one shouldn't fool around with, and I left her alone.  

"No, I think I'm alright."

"I insist."  The edge in his voice left little room for argument, so I conjured up a chair beneath me, and sat down where I was.  The chair was undoubtedly the most comfortable I'd ever sat in, and I sank into it, relaxing with a heady sigh.

"So, what are we supposed to do?  Talk about our feelings?  Share our favorite memories?  Sit here in an awkward silence, trying not to kill each other?"  I asked to no one in particular.

"I'm good with the last one,"  said a man sitting away from the rest of the group, but still in the circle.  "Hey, can I get one of those chairs like yours?  That looks nice."  I gave him a chair.  He grinned, and from a gentle probe of my mind, I discovered that his name was Boco.

I thought it an odd name, but kept my opinion to myself.  I knew plenty of others with odd names, and I had no room to speak.  I was named after a character who fell in love with an angel, after all.  That's what Keegan told me, anyway.  

"This is going to be painful,"  remarked a slight girl with silver eyes.  They reminded me of Storm's, and I noted the lack of enthusiasm in her voice, detecting a massive wave of sarcasm.

I wholeheartedly agreed with her.

The End

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