Flippin' Awesome


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Scene Title Flippin' Awesome
Synopsis After his secret is discovered, Paul expects a lecture — and gets a celebration, a request, and a wrestling match on top of the very short reprimand.
Date November 27, 2010

Pollepel Island

The door is shut firmly behind them. Luckily, everyone else in the room is out right now due to the time of day. Brian immediately gestures for the boy to grab a blanket. Slapping his back to the wall, he tilts his head back. "Alright Paul let's run through this. You have an ability, that you didn't tell us about. You can phase, and you have kept that from us? For who knows how long?!" Pushing his back off the wall he takes a few steps in. "From me? From Gillian? From Mr.Eric? From me?!" Brian looks rather enraged for a moment. "You lied to us, Paul? And don't even say you just didn't mention it because that's still a lie."

Looking down at the young boy, Brian purses his lips. "Someone could be hurt like that Paul? What if something happened, and if we knew you could phase, you could help us? You could help the other kids? And we wouldn't know about it. And what have I always said about abilities?! You could have been hurt Paul. What if you used your power wrong and got stuck in a wall?" Brian folds his arms over his chest, bowing his head. "Am I missing anything, does that sound right?"

Paul cowers on the bed, head bowed, tears rubbing down his chubby cheeks. He nods now and then, his dark eyes down on the toes of his Converse sneakers. When Brian finally stops talking, his head cups up, tears clinging to long lashes. "No, I guess that's everything," he says in a small voice, his hands nervously wringing one another. "I'm sorry! I didn't… I didn't mean to put anyone in danger, and I'm careful! I don't get stuck in walls! I've been practicing it carefully and I never do it if I don't know where the wall leads to or anything… I wouldn't ever put anyone in danger, and if I ever knew someone needed me, I'd have told you! You know I would have!"

"It doesn't matter now, Paul." Brian dismisses immediately. "I took you in, man. I don't have to take you guys in right? I don't have to give you guys a place to stay. I don't have to teach you. But I do because I want to, and I do because I love you. And I trust you buddy… So it hurts me to find out you don't trust me. Have I ever lied to you buddy? Have I ever done something that should make you not trust me? I've always been there for you, man. And I will always be there for you." He lowers his head for a long moment. "Now with that said…"

"Dude. You can phase?! How flipping awesome is that?!" His tone suddenly escalating into unparalleled enthusiasm. "You know how much funny crap you can do now?!" His hands splay out, his arms outstretched. "How long can you phase for? Like for real man, this is exciting!"

The little boy's lip quivers until he firmly presses it down and he nods, more tears slipping down his cheeks as his head ducks once more. He hugs the blanket around himself, and looks like once more he'd like to phase right now to get out of the guilt trip that Brian lays all over him like jam on bread. But then Brian's tone changes, and he looks up hesitantly, as if it might be a trick.

Finally his downturned mouth pulls into a grin. "I know, right?" he says, eyes widening. "It's so cool! Like, a few seconds. Then I gotta rest. I wouldn't ever try like a thick thick wall that's wider'n I am, not yet anyway. I need to build up my strength or whatever, first, right? I practice every day though! That wall's the thickest one I've done, but I made sure I could do it first with just my hand!" he says exictedly.

"Try me." Brian says excitedly, walking over. Pointing to his stomach. "Go through me." He nods affirmatively, trying to show Paul that this is a very good idea." Getting down on his knees next to Paul's mat, he pulls his arms up so Paul can have plenty of room to move. Not that he really needs it, with this recent revelation. "So how long have you been doing this? Like a couple weeks? Why didn't you tell me?" It's not so guilt trippy this time, just an honest question one friend seeks from another.

"Um." Paul bites his lip and shakes his head, his eyes wide. "I don't wanna go through you — it'd be gross, and it might hurt you, I donno, and you're wider'n I am! I'm not ready to go through someone wider'n me." And then there's the issue of phasing through bone and blood and flesh. He shakes his head again.

"Um. Longer, maybe. But everyone's been so busy and worried about November, I didn't wanna mention it. And besides, then if anything ever goes missing and stuff, people would blame me — they already think Lance and I do everything wrong ever so why give them more of a reason to?" he points out.

"Because you do Paul, that's why." It's not said in a reprimanding tone, Brian sits back on his heels and smiles. "Dude.. This is so awesome. I wish you would have told me." He gives a shrug though, pushing himself up a little he peers at the kid. "So you really know how to do this? Dude. You know that girl that I've been talking about? The one in the mirrors? We've been trying to find someone that can phase. Maybe you can try to.. I don't know teach her how to un..phase." He peers at Paul. "Think you can do that buddy?"

"Teach her how to unphase?" Paul echoes, his brows knitting together as he considers this. "I … I don't really have to think about unphasing. I just do — like, right now, I don't think I could stay phased if I wanted to. I … man, now I'm scared to think about it — what if I get stuck? Is that what happened to her? Is she stuck? She got stuck half phased? Like in a mirror?"

Paul turns to look at the mirror on the wall, and he shakes his head. "I don't think I could get stuck in that — I'd just unphase after a few seconds and be on one side or the other… how did she get stuck?" He chews his lower lip nervously as he peers from the mirror back to Brian.

Brian frowns before shaking his head optimistically. "We'll try it." He nods affirmatively. "She just.. She used her power too much.. and now she doesn't know how to turn it off. You guys are probably a little different but you might be able to fix it. Or at least, help her." He gives a light shrug. "I'm not going to ground you for your life, so the least you can do is help me try to help this girl, okay?"

The boy nods his head. "I'll try! I want to help people with my power, like you do and like Gillian does and Colette and Magnes and Jason!" he says excitedly. "If you don't think I'll mess it up, I mean. I don't wanna mess anything up more than I already did earlier today. I didn't mean to make the blind girl fall or Kasha cry or Abby scream-" Paul pauses, and he smirks a little deviously. "But come on, Abby screaming was kinda funny, wasn't it? Be honest, Brian! You said it's wrong to lie."

"It was nice to see Abby scream. I wouldn't be opposed to her getting rattled a notch every now and then. But that doesn't make it okay." Or does it? "But scaring Lucy and letting that blind girl slip. Baad. Scaring Abby… Okayish. Just.. I will still have to yell at you if you get caught." He's a great role model. Sitting back he opens his arms as if for a hug, "Come here, man."

Paul grins a bit, knowing that Brian was amused, even if he has to act like a grownup about it. "Thanks, Brian. You're the best. I'm sorry I didn't tell you… I was just waiting for it to be a super good moment and surprise you and I guess I just got caught up in my own secret," the young boy says with a sheepish smile.

But then, Paul hops of the bed and launches himself against Brian into not just a hug but a tackle, making Brian fall back onto the floor and starting — he can only hope — an impromptu wrestling match with the Lighthouse's guardian.

"I will literally throw you through the wall, punk." The Lighthouse kids know how seriously Brian takes his wrestling matches. A kid has never been hurt wrestling him, but he's not the type of 'dad' who lets the kids win. He's a very competitive play wrestler. Throwing his arm in a loop around Paul's head, he uses the leverage to hop over and get Paul's back. Where he'll choke him out… err… pin him. And laugh…

Because that's what you do when you're playing.

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