Two Sides of One Coin
The Mutant Devision
“Are you sure you're ready to return to the field?” Vanessa asked, looking over the folder in her hands to the man sitting across from her. Her long, black hair was tied up in a bun and she wore a black business jacket over a white blouse with a matching black pencil skirt. The folder in her hands contained a request to return to duty from one James Salvador, the man sitting across from her. “James...” The woman said, taking on a more personal tone. “You shouldn’t rush back into things. It’s only been a week since... since Isabel died.”
Vanessa couldn’t imagine what it would have been like for him, he and Isabel had been close, a lot closer than a lot of other mutant and agent teams get. She sighed softly and looked to the wall slightly, closing the folder. “I can’t stop you, since the doctors and psychiatrists gave you the all clear. But I don’t think it’s a good idea.” She said simply as she swivelled in her chair and opened the laptop at her desk. The woman began tying away quickly, her fingers flying over the keys as her eyes scanned the screen.
It was simply regulation; he’d have to get a new partner. He may not like it, but he couldn’t go back without one. It was regulation and not up for negotiation. The question was who? They had a few mutant agents on base who were inactive, any of them capable. The trouble was matching one to James. Finally, she stopped over one and looked it over closely. “I think she’ll do.” The woman confirmed as she pressed a few buttons and pages began printing off from the machine in a corner of the room. Standing, Vanessa retrieved them and placed them in a plain folder and marked it with ‘Kite’ before walking to the door.
“Let’s go get her shall we? There are a few jobs we could send the pair of you on. Little jobs, she’s fairly new to the system. I think you’ll like her, Ferin is her name. She’s keen that’s for sure, but a little hard to control. You’ll need to keep a close eye on her; I think she needs someone like you to keep her in check.” She stopped at a door that led to a large exercise room and opened the door, revealing a girl with an impressive ten foot wing span flying around the room, seemingly oblivious to their presence. “Have fun.” Vanessa said as she passed the file to James.
The agent's eyes didn't turn from the woman above as the file was offered to him. His mouth trembled at the corners as memories of the first time he met his late partner came to mind. It was hard, but this was what he needed to do. Sitting alone in his home, starting at old photographs wasn't the way to heal, it was the way to break. The only thing that could save him now was to step forward and forget about things, at least until he was ready to deal with them. The woman tapped him with the file again, and he nodded. He took it in one hand, and put it under his arm to read later. "Thank you." He said before the woman gave him a small bow and headed out. His eyes twitched with the loud sound of the door shutting, at least that was the initial thought.
After a few seconds of staring at the girl, flying without a care in the world, he realized that wasn't the case. It was his heart hammering in his chest, pounding out nervously with fear of the first meeting. There was always fear, he didn't know why. He didn't waste time with it though, because he's lost years to pondering over his social anxiety, and hadn't anything to show for it, but wasted time, and a long list of failed medication and time on a psychologist's couch. "Excuse me." He said, pushing himself out of his deep thoughts like a man jumping out of an airplane because that was the only way the damn thing was ever going to get done. He cleared his throat when he felt his mouth go dry. "Excuse me, ma'am." He called, a little louder. "Your Ferin, correct? Code name kite?" He started walking, but stopped when he thought it would be better to seem less anxious. "I'm here to speak with you." He crossed his arms, and waited for a reaction, or some kind of scene the young woman had heard him.
Two Sides of One Coin
Music blasted in Ferin’s ears and a light sweat coated her skin, she’d been at it since early this morning, she needed to make sure she kept in good shape and exercised her wings daily or otherwise they’d fail her when she needed them most, at least that’s what the guy they’d assigned to tell her what to do said. Personally she didn’t care either way, she enjoyed stretching her wings, even if they did make her do it indoors. It wasn’t so much the sound the man made, rather the movement she caught out of the corner of her eye that drew the girl’s attention.
She stopped her circling and hovered in the air for a few seconds before she began dropping, her wing tips pointing upwards and she looked, until the very last second, that she was going to hit the ground far too fast. However at the last minute her wings snapped open and slowed her decent so that she landed feather-light on the ground. “What’s up?” The girl called, her voice far too loud in the empty hall. Stopping for a moment she pulled out the ear buds and walked up to the man who’d come into the room.
She was used to random people visiting her every now and then. Once people heard there was a girl with wings they generally wanted to see, even though there were probably much more interesting people here. “Sorry about that, I wasn’t really expecting anyone to come visit. My name’s Ferin, can I help you with anything?” She tilted her head slightly at him, much like a bird would if it were paying attention to a human and her wings twitched behind her back before folding in tightly and settling in against her clothes.
James thought about doing more to get the woman's attention, but decided against it. There was no real reason for the decision other than some doubt about his choice. His body quivered a little and he found himself starting to turn, but didn't move much before he noticed the change in the woman's flight patter, which he attributed to her noticing his presence. A small quiver of anxious panic shot through him. His first reaction was to try and think up a way to make himself look calm, and a little disinterested. He gave that up when he came to the conclusion that would mean having to move into a different position, which he couldn't do till after he figured out what look he needed. Instead, he paused, and adjusted himself so it looked like there was something interesting on the wall to his left. He frowned, and wished there was more there than just white. Hell, he would've been happy with a little framed picture of a sail boat at sea.
By the time the woman landed and started to speak with him, he had managed to regain much of his calm. He felt his heart start to slow down, and his nerves relaxed themselves. For some reason things were getting easier, and this made him nervous. Either this was going to be a complete train wreck, or he was going to enjoy his time with his new partner.
"It's not a problem." He said, turning towards her, and putting one of his hands into his hip pocket. "I'm sure these facilities are to your liking?" He paused, and took the envelope out from under his arm, and raised it to her. "You said your name is Ferin, right?" He raised up her file so she could see it. "Well, my name is James, and I'm your new handler." He took a step forward, putting the envelope back under his arm, and held out his hand to her. "It's a pleasure to meet you. By the way, how long would it take for you to be ready for our first assignment?"
Two Sides of One Coin
Ferin shrugged slightly. “Not really. It’s stuffy in here, I much rather the feeling of the wind against my skin. But they’re... hesitant to let me fly outside. No clue why. What do they think I’m going to do? Fly off?” She scoffed lightly and shrugged, rolling her shoulders slightly as she fluttered her wings lightly. However when he said ‘handler’ the girl shuddered slightly. “Please. I’m not going to respond to that title. I’m your partner, or we’re nothing.” She seemed insistent on that point, now a little more stand-offish than she had been before. Her eyes wondered to his outstretched hand and the envelope under his arm.
After a moment she rolled her head slightly and smiled as she took his hand, shaking it lightly. “I can be ready right now if you like?” She offered excitedly suddenly reaching out and grabbing the file and pulling back, moving just out of his reach and taking into the air. “So what do they have to say about me anyway?” The girl muttered as she read the file. “Troublesome, shows signs of rebellion, doesn’t listen to authority. Blah, blah, blah.” The girl sighed and dropped the file to the floor.
“That’s no fun. Come on, let’s get going.” She dropped back to the ground and hurried out the door, stopping for a moment to look back to see if James was following her. “Come on slow-poke you’re gonna get left behind!” Ferin called as she walked quickly down the hallway. Her wings were half-spread, the tips touching the walls as she walked, taking up most of the space. As she got to the corner of the corridor Ferin stopped and waited, turning to look for her partner. He probably had no idea what he was getting himself into. The file was right when it said she was a handful.
The sudden rush of energy which buffeted James left him speechless. He couldn't help but stare, and hate himself for being to surprised to speak, at just how hyper the young woman was. Her reaction to the files everything he said was like lighting the fuse to a firework, expecting some kind of time before the explosion, and finding the fire instant. There was no zero to sixty in five seconds. There was just sixty. Feeling slightly flustered he did his best to close his mouth, tightly and try to look as nonplussed as he could. At first he was sure he wasn't doing a very good job of pulling it off, but he noticed the woman was so centered on what came next, she didn't seem to mind taking in every detail of the moment. This would be a problem later he would have to talk to someone about, but for the moment he couldn't help but feel relief as the woman turned and started moving away from him.
"I'm coming." He said, taking one last moment to size her up, and force himself to continue on with the mission, before starting towards her. "I don't see why your rushing so far ahead of me." He shook his head and let his hands slip into his pockets. "It's not like you know where we're going. Take a moment to breath in, and savor the air. You never know what moment's your last." He reached her. "Aren't you at least a little curious about what we're going to be doing, or at least where we'll be doing it? Unless you know a way to get it done without even being at the right place then I don't see what good rushing in the first direction you face will do you. "
Two Sides of One Coin
Ferin looked to him and made a small face like one a child would make at a lecture they’d heard from their parents dozens of times and rolled her eyes. “I’m in a rush because I’m excited. This is my first mission ever and I’m eager to get out of this bloody building and finally spread my wings. You have no idea what it’s like being cooped up in there.” She made another face. “You take things too seriously.” Was the only rebuttal the girl seemed capable of to his obviously made point. Ferin rushed into things, she was eager and easily excitable.
That’s who she was; it was also the reason she had yet to be partnered up. No one had ever been able to control her. “But yes, now that you mention it I am curious as to what we get to do. Is there some ring of criminals we’re gonna bust up? Do I get a gun?” She walked eagerly beside him, her feet seeming to barely touch the ground in her excitement. As they got to the exit of the complex the guards instantly moved to stop her, clearly familiar with the girl and were under instruction not to let her pass.
“Don’t worry guys, I’ve got a,” she made another face. “Handler now. See? You have to let me through.” The guards looked to James uncertainly, but they also recognised him and both nodded and let the pair thought, Ferin crying out in delight. However both also gave James a very specific look as he passed them, one that said ‘good luck, you’re gonna need it’. Outside, Ferin’s wings were spread out wide and it was clear she was resisting the urge to take flight. “Fresh air, naturally light, grass. God I’ve missed outside.” The girl cried happily as she turned to look to James, smiling brightly. “So where are we going?”