Hypothetical Questions


vf_elaine_icon.gif vf_magnes_icon.gif

Scene Title Hypothetical Questions
Synopsis Magnes comes for a few things and asks some hypothetical questions and at least one real one.
Date November 28, 2011

The Hub

The classroom was a small room, with tables pushed together and benches behind them to make up seating and work areas for the children. Off to the side was a storage closet carrying the precious few items they had for the children—writing supplies, books, crayons, craft supplies… whatever they could find. There wasn't much, but there never was and they made it work.

Elaine had traded away personal belongings for school supplies several times in the past, justifying that the children were more important than she was. The children were everything to her. Seated at the one actual desk in the room, the one in the front, Elaine appears to be grading papers, pencil scribbling across the page as she makes notes as to what can be improved.

Magnes knocks a few times, then heads inside, looking around. "Hey, uh, I'm Magnes J. Varlane, one of those two new people. I was wondering if you had boo—" He pauses, spotting who exactly is grading papers.


Oh hey, it's that sudden realization that you were involved with a woman who may have been slightly evil and a bit too obsessed with viruses in an effort to get over your head-headed ex, but was too busy or in crisis or dealing with an evil twin to realize the nature of your actions and feelings.

Well shit, what a bad time for that.

To realize that you aren't over your ex and really need to get back home and deal with those feelings.

"Oh, hey, Elaine."

Oh shit wait a minute a save is needed now.

"I was told about you."


He lets out a long breath, looking more than a little flustered and a bundle of nerves. "I'm looking for books on theoretical physics, I figured this might not be a bad place to check for things like that just laying around…"

"Magnes J. Varlane. That's a fancy name," Elaine looks up from her grading papers with a pleasant smile. "I was told about you too. It's very nice to meet you, Liz spoke kindly of you but I'm not going to lie, I got the sense that you're a bit of a troublemaker."

Here, she gets to her feet, moving over towards the storage closet. "Not sure why you need books on theoretical physics but I can do my best. We have a few physics books, high school level, maybe a college one if you're lucky…"

"Well… I could probably use it all if I'll be educating myself on things like this. And, well, my ability is… the simple explanation is gravity manipulation." Magnes walks a bit closer to her, though he keeps some distance. There's clear nerves in his tone, and he does little things like turn his head from her if she looks back at him. "I don't try to cause trouble, but I guess I make mistakes sometimes…"

He considers The Most Dangerous Eileen for a few moments.

Then, back to Elaine, something suddenly seems to hit him, and he clears his throat to ask, "Hey, hypothetically speaking, let's say you were dating a guy, right? And let's say that guy was a vigilante who went out every night, and then came back hurt, and he stupidly chose his stupid vigilante life instead of working out his issues with you and giving up his stupid vigilante life."

He takes a deep breath after all that.

Rubbing the back of his neck, he continues, "Now let's say he didn't know how to deal with it, so he sort of avoided everyone for a little bit. And now you're dating a girl and it's too late for me to do anything about it, but now he kind of regrets it and, I don't know, wishes he could say something, anything, I don't know…"

He shrugs. "I don't even know what I'm asking. Continuing to speak hypothetically, the girl you're with is amazing, she's also my friend, I don't want to ruin that. But, if you were this hypothetical girl, what would you want me to do with my feelings?"

"Ah, your ability. Is that why you're researching physics then?" Elaine leans into the closet, rummaging around in it before she pulls out two books, both high school science books, one general with a section on physics, the other a book on physics itself. "All we've got." She moves back towards Magnes and offers him the books.

But then he's asking hypothetical situational questions and Elaine isn't sure what to say. "I mean, I'm not the best at these but I can try." She listens to what he says, nodding slowly. "I mean, I wouldn't know what to do if I were the hypothetical girl because… goodness. Relationships aren't really so much my thing. I mean, not that I wouldn't want one, they just don't really happen for me, I'm a little awkward and I tend to babble and I get nervous all the time…"

She rubs the back of her neck, much like he did. "But if it were some other girl, I'd say you should trust your heart. If you love her, I think that should be enough. Even if things don't work out for you, trusting in your heart is the right way to go."

"My heart says I should let her be happy." Magnes tilts his head, a little surprised perhaps. Then he's rubbing his chin, considering when the virus happened. Elaine would have started changing years before he actually met her…

"I'm kind of awkward too, to be honest. I have no idea how to handle things most of the time, but I think I'm getting better at it. I'm starting to realize that I can't keep being the person I've been, making the same mistakes…" He takes the two books, looking them over, then smiles and nods in thanks. "My heart says to let her be happy, try to be her friend again, I mean, in a genuine way, without the bitterness."

"So, second hypothetical question." He starts to look around the room, seemingly curious. "Let's say this girl had a twin, I mean perfect copy in every way physically, but I could tell she was probably very different. Would it be wrong to get to know the twin, or just kind of really weird? Annnd to make it interesting, let's say these twins never, ever met, though maybe they might meet one day?"

"If she's happy, that's good for her, but you shouldn't suffer in silence. Let her know your feelings and that you care for her but you will be only her friend now. You can care for people as a friend and still have it be a deep, meaningful relationship." Elaine nods. "Let her be happy but let you be happy too. I'm always a proponent of being happy."

Elaine laughs a little. "You don't seem so awkward. Well, maybe a little, but you seem sort of… confident maybe? I wish I could be that sort of confident. I have to work up the courage to ask someone to pass something to me." And then… more hypotheticals.

"Well, if she's a twin she's a different person. She might have some similarities but in essence she's a new person. You just have to watch out that you don't bring your feelings too far into it. You care about the first girl, who is to say you won't start caring about the second?"

"I used to have a lot more trouble talking to cute girls and stuff. I'd sometimes stutter a lot, or say something really stupid… well, I still sometimes say something really stupid. But I'm talking to you fine." Magnes reads the back of one of the books, though he finally starts to make some eye contact with her when she mentions him being confident.

Now he has to be confident oh no.

"But uh, yeah, you're right. I'll tell her all of that if I ever see her again. We can be good friends, like adults. It's not like she's dating someone I hate, they're both my friends." His stare lingers for a second too long, before he breaks it and starts to walk around again. "So, are you any good with languages?"

"You sound like me!" Elaine says, overenthusiastically. His eye contact has her suddenly blushing and looking away. That she has no idea how to deal with and she fiddles with the sleeve of her oversized shirt. He might be 'confident' but she certainly wasn't.

"She's dating your friend? That sounds like it would be hard. Pining after someone who you love but trying to be happy for them." The redhead shakes her head slowly. "I don't envy you. I suppose that's one good thing about not being in a relationship… no drama."

But Magnes said the magic word and Elaine lights up like a Christmas tree. "Languages? Oh, you came to the right girl. My ability is languages, isn't that funny? What do you want to know? I mean, I can't use it to learn more right now but I still retain the information so long as I use it." She taps her head. "It's all up here. So what would you like to know?"

"Yeah, I mean… I've had some time to process things, I was even trying to date other people but that didn't quite work out. I think there's a chance an evil scientist might have been trying to take advantage of me, I'm not sure." Magnes shrugs, but smiles at how nervous she gets. "You don't have to be shy with me, you know. I'm probably more afraid of you than you are of me." he notes with a slight chuckle.

"And, oh, I was wondering about Spanish. I'm trying to read Lynette and Ruiz' books. She said I can come over any time and read them. She's really nice." he answers, while simultaneously describing Lynette with words that not many would probably choose.

"Pshaw, there's no way you're more nervous than I am right now. I don't usually talk to… gentlemen. Not one-on-one. I talk to children. And Elspeth. And occasionally others. Never just men. Like I said, I'm really awkward… you're just easy to talk to. All that confidence."

Elaine smiles at him again. "Ah, Spanish is easy. I've taught people Spanish before, so I can teach you the basics anytime. Once you know the basics, it's just a touch of vocabulary for those words that aren't just practically the same in Spanish as they are in English."

"Maybe you're easy to talk to, because usually girls aren't so shy, so I feel more confident." Magnes smiles, his tone playfully teasing, finding an adult sized chair to take a seat in. "I'm honored to be a rare gentleman who sees you alone. And sorry, I need to sit, I'm still not used to holding all of my weight up without my ability. It throws me off a little…"

"Oh, that's great, then! I'd love to learn Spanish. I don't know what I could teach you, uh… normally I'd offer to teach you to make pizza, but I don't think this place is exactly crawling with pizza supplies…" He gently taps his chin, considering. "This might sound a bit… well, nerd… but I could tell you stories I remember from comic books, and TV. Oh, do you know how to sew? I know how to make clothes. And there's a piano, I could teach you to play piano…"

Elaine giggles. "Well, maybe I am easy to talk to, but you're one of the few who has figured that out." She moves to slip into a chair next to his. "Thank you for being a rare gentleman, then."

She taps her chin, seeming thoughtful. "You don't have to trade, I'd teach you Spanish for free, but those sound like good ideas. I'd love to hear new stories, that's something I can use with the kids, I only know how to mend my own clothes, and I know very little piano. I can play chopsticks. So whatever you'd like to teach I'd be happy to be taught."

"I try to be a gentleman, I'm not always good at it." Magnes can't help but stare for another brief moment, when she sits next to him, then shakes his head, as if to shake things out of it, and looks straight forward.

Look at that wall!

"I used to entertain orphans at a lighthouse, so I know a lot of the stuff they like to hear." His nerves suddenly seem to return, staring at the floor, then he turns to her and blurts. "So uh, I mean, if you want, I could read to you. I mean, not that you're a kid or anything! But I mean…"

Okay he did the awkward thing.

"Well, I think you're a gentleman. Less of a troublemaker than I thought you'd be." Elaine follows his gaze to the wall, trying to see what he finds so interesting. "Anyways, at least you're acting like one now. I haven't said anything stupidly awkward yet myself."

There's a small giggle when he suggests she's not a kid. "No, I'm very much an adult, Magnes J. Varlane. But that doesn't mean I can't enjoy the act of being read to. It's one of the most relaxing things, especially if someone reading has a nice voice."

"Well then, I'll try to find a good book to read to you when I visit K-Mart. Then, uh, I guess where ever is appropriate for me to read a book to you, we'll go there." Magnes suggests, his speech in the full bloom of awkward. "I'm bad at this, by the way." He doesn't say at what, he just sort of expects her to get it.

"We can always use the classroom, although that's not as comfortable. There's the common area as long as no one's playing the piano…" Elaine seems thoughtful. "If both places are too noise we can go to my quarters, though I'd have to clean up first. I usually don't have visitors other than Elspeth." She offers him a smile. "What, bad at conversing like an adult? You're doing fine. Hell, I'm doing fine."

"Well, I mean, you know, asking a girl to hang out, alone. It's, well, I don't think I ever stopped being kind of bad at it." Magnes laughs, then lowers his forehead into his hand. "Sorry, I'm totally making it more awkward. Wow I should really cut my losses and head back to my room while you still think I'm awesome!"

"Now you're making me nervous only because I don't know exactly what you mean. Is this…" Elaine trails off, turning red. "I mean, I'm bad at having these sort of conversations. I'm not used to… well, attention. Usually I'm just the awkward duck in the pond. Not a huge dating pool down here either. Not that you're—I mean, I didn't mean to imply that…" Now her forehead is in her hand.

"I mean I'm just, like, you know…" Magnes holds his other hand up, and the books hit the ground. "Oh crap, I forgot I don't have gravity right now…" He reaches down to pick the books back up. "So uh, what I'm saying is, I might be slightly, like, you know, asking you out, a little, maybe…"

"Are you sure?" Elaine asks before smacking herself on the hand. "What kind of question is that?" She addresses herself for a moment. "I just don't want you to be making a mistake. I mean, not that I'm a mistake, I just… I mean, you know I'm not terribly interesting and I'm very awkward, right?"

"You seem like a kind person, I'm already super awkward, I think your awkwardness is kind of cute anyway, and us talking is the first time I've forgotten that I'm in a weird zombie apocalypse scenario with a super powered army above our heads." Magnes finally turns to her, trying to actually keep some measure of eye contact to say something serious for once in this discussion. "And, well, we'll be teaching each other about our mutual interests, that's not boring, right? And, looking at you, you're not exactly the bottom of the barrel, I don't know if anyone's told you…"

"I don't think anyone's ever quite told me that, no," Elaine admits. "But you're right. We'll be sharing our interests with each other, which will be fun, so…" She pauses. "I guess I'm saying yes, to the somewhat asking out thing."

"Alright, cool… Too bad we don't have movies or anything. But books work just fine. Especially if we can find comics." Magnes can't help but smile really wide, though he's rubbing the side of his cheek, hunching down, clearly trying to hide it. "We could start some Spanish lessons now, before I leave…"

"Yeah, a movie would have been pretty stellar," Elaine agrees, looking back over at him. "But books will fill in, we can use our imaginations." It's pretty obvious that her time is mostly spent with the kids. "Spanish lessons? I can certainly start those. I'm sure you'll catch on quick. I've been told you're brilliant."

"Well, I did have a pretty great mother, when I was home schooled." Magnes says nothing of his father, sitting the books down onto a desk behind them. "I guess this can be our first date. A Spanish lesson. That seems awkward enough for us." he laughs, and moves to gently place an arm on her shoulder, before carefully taking it back.

Elaine laughs at the suggestion of it being their first date. "Sufficiently awkward, I'd say, so it works for the both of us." She eyes his arm, then chuckles lightly as he removes it. "Well then. Let's get to the Spanish, shall we?"

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