Lighthouses and Sandcastles


joe_icon.gif lance_icon.gif lynette_icon.gif mateo_icon.gif silvia_icon.gif

Scene Title Lighthouses and Sandcastles
Synopsis Mateo gets to calm his first Dad Panic when he meets Silvia's new friends and Lynette gets to reunite with some of the children from the Lighthouse.
Date March 9, 2018

The Benchmark Center

The Benchmark Center looks every bit a medical facility from the front. But Silvia knows the way but through the back and into the upper floor where things are more comfortable. The common room is a big space, with couches and chairs, a plush carpet stretch out in front of a decent sized entertainment system set up (which are the parts the kids might notice first), but also a baby grand piano off to one side and a kitchenette, complete with an island and stools. It's like a table.

Lynette is there already, with a spread of pizzas— homemade it seems like, but not by Lynette so everyone's safe— and drinks. She remembers what teenagers like, even if she is mom-aged now. Maybe because she's mom-aged. She's not going to give it too much thought, lest she have to admit that she's aged in the last eight years. Which we all know, she has not. She's dressed like they remember— jeans and a sweater— although it's all in much better shape than anything Pollepel had available. Music plays on the stereo, the local station which she's still pretty excited about existing.

Wearing jeans and a buttoned up flannel shirt, the one the kids don’t know stands near Lynette. Mateo’s short and compact, but actually does look like he could be Silvia’s father from their similar skin tone and dark hair and eyes. The immigration folks had been willing to believe it, making her officially his daughter from a previous relationship on paper. That wasn’t the truth, but sometimes the truth needed to be stretched, something anyone who grew up in the Ferry probably knew.

“You know, I could have provided music,” he adds, glancing toward the radio. He’s not even meaning the piano in the corner. He hasn’t played his guitar or charango in a while. “But I suppose it’s nice to have a working radio station, too.” They’d barely had one in Mexico that wasn’t from satellite. “And it’s not too late for you to break out the knives.”

He’s only half joking.

He won’t be that overprotective dad of a teenage girl loading and unloading his gun when he meets the boys that the girl brings over— but probably because he’s not a gun person. And he while he doesn’t need guns to make them afraid, he’s not going to do what that soft whispering ocean of nothing in the back of his head always wants him to do.

Joe is so psyched for the dinner. They get to see Lynette again! And meet Silvia's dad! And eat! Teenagers love to eat. Everyone loves to eat, but it's pretty much the primary imperative for teenagers. Consume all the food. Joe walks along with the other teens as Silvia guides them through the building to the main room. The first thing Joe does is haul ass in Lynette's direction. She is getting the BIGGEST hug. "Lynette!" And then impact! He'll hug her tight, holding it for a few seconds before stepping back grinning wide. "So glad you're okay! Happy to see you! How are you? You look good. Look like you're doing well! Hi! You must be Silvia's dad!"

He steps over to Mateoa and offers him a hand, then spots pizza and "Oh my god is that pizza?!?!" Then he pauses and peers suspiciously at Lynette. "Did you learn to cook?" Apparently pizza being excited is predicated on whether or not Lynette is the one that made it. Joe is not dressed up. He's a teenager that lives on his own. He is in jeans and a t-shirt with a hoodie on over it. A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles hoodie. Dark green though, not a lighter garish green. Brynn's work. The whole thing. It started life as a plain gray hoodie.

It's in a light grey hoodie - without cartoons on it - that Lance is dressed as he walks in with his friend, looking around with a curious craning of his neck here and there. This place is way more swank than the hole-in-the-wall the teenagers live in down in Phoenix Heights, that's for sure. And then—

"Hey, Aunt Lynette." A broad grin curves to his lips, hands tucked into his pockets as if he's worried he's going to touch and break something, letting Joe go barrel past for the hug. "Good to see you." She's being monopolized for the more excitable one of the pair, so he gives Mateo a more wary once-over, "You must be, uh, Mister Ruiz?"

A hand's offered, "Good to meet you."

He does not miss a beat when Joe asks if Lynette learned to cook, but instead swings that hand to smack into the side of Joe's head before offering it back out again. It's okay. Joe's nigh-invulnerable.

Silvia was trying not to run late but sometimes a girl just takes a little longer to get ready. Not that Silvia was trying extra hard to get ready… she just took a little longer, that’s all. Scurrying out of an adjoining room as soon as she hears voices, the force of her movement carries her over towards the cluster of people. She clears her throat, then proclaims, “All of my favorite people in the same room. Almost. Brynn isn’t here so almost everyone.”

Bouncing on her heels, she looks around. “I have the first two pages of the Adventures of Lance and Joe inked. I haven’t shown them to anyone yet, so you can all be surprised at how amazing they are together.”

"You can provide music later," Lynette says to Mateo, "After you've actually met them." No hiding behind a guitar this time, at least, not right away. At the note about the knives, she gives him a crooked smile. "You know I don't need knives, my darling," she says in a tone that could be confused for flirtatious, because it is.

But when the boys make their way in, Lynette's attention turns and she smiles when Joe heads her way. She's ready, though, arms out to catch him and everything. The hug is certainly returned. "Oh my goodness," she says when he leans back, her hands moving to his face for a moment, "last time I saw you, you needed a stool to reach anything." It's an exaggeration, but the point is made. Her attention turns to Lance, too, and she beckons him over, too. "It's so good to see you two again."

She glances to the pizza when it's mentioned, then back to Joe. Both his question and the slap get a laugh. "Don't worry, it's not my work. Someone who knows how to work an oven made them." And then Mateo. "This is Joe and Lance, a couple of our kids. Young men," she correct herself, since they aren't those little kids anymore. "Guys, this is Mateo." And when Silvia comes out, she chuckles at her, too. "Well, we'll have the girls over next time." As far as her comics, Lynette seems pleased that they'll get to see them.

This couple of kids? They’re actually taller than Mateo. But he’s a rather small guy, by most accounts. Not scrawny, just… compact. He’s barely got much on Lynette, and that’s only if she shies away from high heeled shoes. If she goes for the heels, he’s doomed. And they are exactly as he feared they would be. Attractive looking, for boys, and that gleam of trouble in their eyes. “I think the cooks at did most the work,” he teases his poor wife and her non-cooking fingers. What do they call a black thumb for cooking? He’s not sure. All he knows is he barely trusts her to make a sandwich sometimes.

He takes the young man’s hand and gives it a solid grasp, but not too much so. “Nice to meet you. Silv’s been talking about you a lot.” He looks back at Silvia, wondering if she’s going to joke about things at him again.

Instead, she’s talking about one of his favorite topics. Her comics. “What kind of trouble have those two boys been up to in your comic already?” he jokes, letting go of the hand. “Do we get to see it now?” His smile is genuine, and he looks at his daughter with a swell of pride, and he hasn’t even seen the pages yet.

It's not that much of an exaggeration. Joe was never terribly big, and he's topped out a little under average height, so he'll never be big. But he was definitely a lot smaller the last time he saw a Lynette. He beams at her, much like when he was younger. He hasn't lost his big honest grin. Lance's blow bounces Joe's head forwards, but there's no pain at least on Joe's part, Lance's hand might hurt a bit though. "Oh, well that's good. I mean… not that I don't uhhh… yah know… ummm like your cooking or anything.." Joe's eyes dodge to the side. He's a terrible liar even when he's actually trying to lie.

"Bah, we'll always be the Lighthouse Kids. I'll be like 40 and I'll still call myself a Lighthouse Kid. Also I'll be 40 and still trying to dare people to throw knives at me." His voice drops down a few octaves. "We know Joe. We know. Enough already." Wait Joe is taller than someone? By a whole inch? Mental fist pump. But he does give Mateo's hand a firm grip and shake. Not hard, not trying to prove anything, but respectful, like Brian taught him.

"Talking about us? Well, I guess Lance /is/ pretty cool. I just make a scene everywhere I go. And I would LOVE TO SEE THE COMIC PAGES!" He shouts out when Silvia mentions them. "I've been jumping up and down since you mentioned them at the arcade! I mean not the whole time. I had to sleep, and eat. THough I could totally eat jumping up and down. Lance remind me next time I'm raiding your peanut butter I need to try that."

“So comic book pages?” He glances over to Lynette with a grin. “I may have lost my mind a bit when she mentioned that you were her mom. Lance did too but he won’t admit it. He’s gotta be the stoic ninja all the time. I was super psyched. Get to meet Silvia’s parents /and/ reunite with one of my favorite people!” Joe’s happy grin is wide, though his eyes do keep ducking towards the pizza. If Silvia doesn’t distract him with comics soon he’s gonna end up ambling over there to destroy some food.

Lance has, it's true, sprouted like a beanpole. He's not cleared six feet yet, but at eighteen there's always the chance that he'll catch up that last few inches before he's done! The clasp of Mateo's hand is firm in return, and then he grins, "All good, I hope." Maybe he doesn't know about the squid incident.

Then Joe's stepping over, and he switches over to give Lynette a hug, laughing, "He's right. I couldn't believe when she said you were her mom. I was like, no way, shocky-zappy-Lynette? I told her about how you helped us get to Canada…"

Bright eyes sweep over to Silvia, widening, "Wait, you already finished some?!"

“I think you’re both pretty cool, and I’m glad my comics are exciting everyone. I worked really hard on them, I got a bit of inspiration thanks to a bit of conversation that stuck with me and so I worked to finish up the pages so I could show them off when we all got together again. And we’ve all got together again.” Silvia seems generally excited, although not quite Joe-levels of excited. No one can best Joe in that category.

“Just hold tight and I’ll go grab the pages,” Silvia starts before she turns to Mateo. “And no saying anything embarrassing while I’m gone, got it?” She gives her father the stink eye before she turns, scurrying out of the room with her usual spring in her step.

"Hey, I pay them for a reason," Lynette says of the cooks, "and that reason is so I don't burn down a kitchen. Again." Again is added for comedic effect, to get a laugh out of the boys. Although, it may be more true than not. "It's alright, Joe," she says, reaching over to ruffle his hair, "I know how bad it is. And I like all of you too much to force you to sit through it."

When Lance comes over, he gets a hug, too, and Lynette shakes her head at how tall he is. Well over her, that's for sure. She might be more inclined toward heels in the near future. "'Shocky-Zappy'? Honestly," she says, but the indignation comes with a chuckle. She looks between him and Joe, her smile widening. "I got word now and then that you all were doing well. It's so much better to see it for myself, though."

The mention of the trip to Canada gets a quirk of her eyebrow. She remembers that trip. Shocking and zapping was certainly part of it. "Hopefully you remembered the part with the moose," she says, dryly.

She looks over at Silvia, the girl getting a wide innocent grin from her mother. What could she possibly say that would be embarrassing. But once the girl is out of the room, she looks back to the boys. "You two are looking out for our girl, right?"

“Quick, dad, think of something embarrassing,” Mateo actually whispers out loud, but even trying to hide it. After all, it’s a joke. He wouldn’t embarrass her too much. She used to be so cute and innocent, and now she’s a teenager. It’s strange. He somewhat wishes he’d have actually adopted her eight years ago, but it was too late to change the past now…

And now she’s already a teen. It’s hard. “So far it seems to be going well,” he adds back to Lance. No, he’s not heard of the squid incident, specifically. Except he had. At least about her turning to sand. Not what had triggered it, though. He can’t blame her for losing control— he’s had lessons and he still can’t control his ability all the time.

But now? Now he has a firm hold on it. “Moose incident?” he turns to Lynette, head tilting to the side. He’s never even seen a moose. From the way he looks back at the young man, he’s listening for the answer to Nette’s question there at the end. And he has that look. That they better be look.

"Of course we are." Joe says, summoning up a little indignation. "We watch out for everyone. Especially those people we call friends. And she's definitely a friend. She fit right in with us and Brynn and the whole crew." Joe holds a hand to his chest as if he's wounded that Lynette even had to ask that question. "Are we taking care of her. Though to be fair she doesn't need a whole lot of taking care of. She's pretty cool, and has a great defense mechanism." He turns to look back at thim, his mouth opening to ask a question, but then his eyes duck to Lance, then down to Lance's hand, then back up to Lance and his mouth closes with an audible click of teeth. Joe used his brain and thought better of asking a question. Which was totally going to be the vacuum question. But Lance would have smacked him, which means it's probably inappropriate. So Joe will save it for later once they get to know Mateo a little more.

"Ooooohhhh!!!" Joe comments out loud, getting the biggest surprised Chris Pratt face ever when Mateo asks about the Moose incident. "DIdn't Gillian ground me for life that day Lynette? I'm pretty sure Gillian grounded me for life that day." He grins wide at her, then looks over at Mateo. "We were escaping to Canada and got attacked by some soldiers. Lynette fried a bunch of guys, and Hailey summoned a moose to attack them, and I charged into the gunfire with Paul to take down some soldiers. We were like 11 but we had it. He phases and I'm invincible and then this moose KABOOM! Out of nowhere!" And Joe of course is dancing around the room reenacting the whole scene, including blasting lightning bolts from his hands like a sith lord. Well pretend lightning since he's not Lynette. "It was awesome." He confirms in a much calmer tone of voice and a couple of head nods.

“Soooo speaking of taking care of people.” No segue at all, none. “You better be taking care of our Aunt Lynette.” He levels a flat stare at Mateo. He has no shame. He does it right in front of her. Out loud. There’s no quiet take aside. Just straight Dad stare. He got it from Brian. Brian got suuuuuper good at the Dad stare with all the LHK’s around.
“Good care.” More level flat Dad stare, then it breaks into a wide beaming grin.

A few times, Lance attempts to get a word in edgewise. He fails, and finally just gives up, rubbing a hand over his face until Joe is finished with his excitable pantomime of the entire scene. He remains nearby in case he needs to hurt his hand by smacking his friend, though.

Secretly the real deterrent is the risk of Lance hurting himself because Joe did something dumb and got his invulnerable head smacked by a very vulnerable hand.

"I was stuck in the truck," he deadpans, "Because I'm not bulletproof." Still, he grins, "Hailey did get a moose to attack, though. It was pretty primal. I was proud of her."

"And yeah, of course! We've been hanging out and showing her arcade games and Red Hook and all, it's been pretty great! It's nice, I mean, having people to hang out with that we didn't grow up with, y'know? And— Joe!"

He buries his face in both hands, hopelessly embarrassed.

Silvia doesn’t stay away for too long. Mostly she’s afraid of what will be said by any and all parties involved. She gathers up the pages before she hurries back, almost tripping over her own two feet. She catches herself on the doorway, managing to keep from looking like she was about to tumble flat onto her face. She casually walks into the room, clearing her throat a little.

“No one said anything weird while I was gone did they?”

Maybe they did, but she’s not about to let that stand when she has comic pages. She holds the two pages in the air, then offers them forward in front of her for the first to grab them. “I haven’t made a cover yet, but there’s a page of setup and one with the squid going onto Joe’s head.” She explains.

"I know. You kids took better care of each other than we did, a lot of the time." Lynette smiles over at Joe and over to Lance, too. "I'm glad. Fold her in. Don't get her into too much trouble. Alright?" Some trouble is okay, is the implication. Not that she's going to say that outright. "And if anything happens that is too much, you call us. Okay? Or Gillian. One of us." Or all of them, maybe.

Lynette looks over at Mateo, looking like she might attempt to explain the moose. But then she doesn't have to. Because Joe covers it. "She did ground you for life. I see it didn't stick," she says with a shake of her head. She looks over at Mateo, to note, "I temporarily incapacitated a few soldiers. Is what happened." Maybe. She looks over at Lance. "You were the only one with any sense in your head," she says, because staying in the truck is what they all should have done.

Of course, then Joe is giving Mateo the talk, a talk Mateo did not get from Lynette's actual father. She hides her smile behind a hand, trying to get the expression back to normal before she looks back at her husband.
She looks at Lance instead. "I see he's not mellowed with age," she remarks, dryly.

But then Silvia comes in with her very timely question and Lynette lets out the laugh she's been trying to hold back. It's just a light sound, but probably not reassuring to the young girl. "Hurry, Sil, show us what you have." The squid might get some eyeing, but they're safe for the moment.

The good thing about the whole reenactment is it let’s Mateo see that these kids are still kids. Even if they were kids who charged armed men. Yeah, he would have grounded them for life probably too. “At least you don’t have to do that sort of thing anymore.” Right? He certainly hopes they don’t take his little Silvia running toward gunfire, when both her parents have always advised her to hide or run away.

When he gets confronted with dad face, he can’t help but grin. He likes that ‘Nette had inspired a protective streek from these children. Mostly because it proves a part of her wrong that what she’d done hadn’t been that great. “I take the best care of her that I can, young man.” And he means it. If he thought he didn’t do a good job he probably wouldn’t have come along when she asked him to join her in New York.

Or when she asked anything else of him, either.

At the return of his favorite little girl in the whole world, he reaches out and touches the top of her head— glad that someone at least is short enough for him to pat on the head. “I couldn’t think of anything embarrassing. I tried. They already know about the sand, so.” And at least one person in a movie they’d watched on family night had had a famously mocked line about sand. And how it gets everywhere.

“But let’s see what you got,” he looks as excited to see the two pages as the kids.

Joe knows he's embarrassed Lance, but Lance is used to being embarrassed because of Joe, so he doesn't really take too much notice of it. He hears Lynette's comment, but it doesn't break the dad face, he just continues to stare at Mateo, seeing how he reacts, and what he says. When he says that he takes the best care of Lynette that he can, and he smiles at the Dad talk Joe breaks into that wide grin and will step forwards aaaaand Mateo gets a hug. A big hug, one that is only broken when Silvia steps back into the room. And that is only because she has comic pages in hand.

Joe lets go of Mateo and steps over near Silvia, peering at the pages she's drawn, but he doesn't try to take them, just looks at them as she holds them out. There's a narrowing of his eyes when he sees the second page. "You're drawing the squid incident." He says flatly, then steps back and then puts a hand to his chest as if wounded. He liks that gesture. "You picked the squid incident for issue one." He staggers backwards as if another blow has been landed, then drops the act and grins. "The pages look primal! And I hope people get as much of a kick out of it as you all seemed to at the time." Joe was the one with the Evolved squid on his head.

"Her going sand when she gets surprised reminds me of Pearl from Finding Nemo. You guys made me ink!" He even adopts the squeaky little girl voice when he says it. "She's already getting better though. I saw Quinn I mean Robyn at the arcade the other day and might have made a scene. Cuz it's so awesome to be seeing all you guys who are responsible for keeping us safe and well… I get a bit excited." A bit. "And she didn't sand! I was surprised."

"I mean, not usually," Lance reassures Mateo. He doesn't have to mention the riot. That's unimportant, completely! The tactit approval from Lynette to fold Silvia into their group brings bright eyes and a grin over her way, "Aunt Lynette! You wound me, do you really think that I'd get her into trouble?"

Yes, this is Lance, it's effectively what he does.

A wink, then, "Not too much— ooh, you drew them already?" And he's piling over with Joe to see them, "And of course she drew the squid. It's not every day you get attacked by terrible flying evo-squid, bro-sef."

There’s a small snicker as Silvia listens to Joe’s fatherly routine. But when the attention moves back to her comics she holds the pages aloft, then gives it to Mateo for him to examine first. “Of course I did the squid incident. But don’t worry, the story is that you get a squid on your head and then bump into some drug dealers by accident and have to stop them when they threaten innocent bystanders.”

The first two pages are mostly setup but the last panel is Joe with the squid on his head and Lance sneaking around in the background. It’s just enough to imply that he had something to do with it without explicitly stating it. The art is well done, and it’s clear that Silvia spent a lot of time working on it. Probably even stayed up a little too late to finish inking the whole thing.

“Now Brynn needs to color it for me.”

"And you remember," Lynette says, once the exchange between Mateo and Joe concludes (and the hug, too), "that I don't need taken care of, right?" Joe. But since she doesn't actually mind the fact that Mateo does, in fact, take care of her, she slides an arm around his waist before they come over to see the comic, too.

"Squid incident?" It's Lynette's turn to question animal antics. She looks to Silvia when she explains the plot, her eyebrow lifting. "You ran into drug dealers?" The way her hand moves to her hip as she looks at the trio, it might answer Lance's affronted question. "You kids were always trouble. I don't expect that to stop now." But keep my girl safe isn't stated, since she already made that part clear, but it's in her sidelong look at the boys.

While he looks over the drawing, that proud look dissolves into worry as he hears them talking about what had actually possibly happened. Drug dealers. Noooo, Mateo doesn’t like that at all. But he doesn’t panic, because of something about how Silvia had said that. That she’d changed the story. “So what really happened with the squid?” Cause he hopes it’s not as bad as saving bystanders from drug dealers.

Even before they can explain, though, he reaches and ruffles Silvia’s hair again, messing it up. “Your comics are beautiful, as usual. I especially like the squid tentacles. They look very scary.” Especially on the poor boy’s head. No one wants squid on their head.

"Yeah we would totally take down some drug dealers trying to hurt people. Well I mean I would. Lance would too. He'd just grouse about not wanting to be a superhero the whole time, and after that. Probably for like days." Joe's eyes roll, though he's grinning wide, and bouncing in place. He peers at the drawings a little more before nodding his head. "I think they look great. But no we didn't actually run into drug dealers. I mean not yet. I'm sure we will, and then we'll have to ninja kick them in the… something. I'll come up with a suitable body part later. But she's coming up with adventures for the comics. I'm sure any real adventures we get into will make it in there too, but the drug dealers is made up. For now."

"You're a strong independent woman and you don't need no man." Joe even finger snaps it a little when he says that. "But just cuz you don't need to be taken care of doesn't mean we don't want you to be taken care of." Yes Joe totally includes Lance in that statement. The Imperial We. "You spent so much time taking care of us and others, it's nice to know you've got someone to watch your back just like you watch his. And hers." His head tips in Silvia's direction, a wide grin still in place on Joe's face. He's going to have the worst smile wrinkles when he's older. Will his skin wrinkle though? Who knows!

“No drug dealers. Lance dropped a squid on my head. He’ll deny it, listen for it he’ll totally say it wasn’t him. But he did. And I freaked out. It was scary. I mean not scary scary, but like OHGODWHATISONMYFACE scary. Like when you see some crazy bug on your floor and you don’t know what it is or does and you’re worried it’s going to turn into a giant monster and eat your foot or something. That kind of scary. Like real scary would take a lot more than a squid after everything we’ve been through. Like the moose attack and the Peter and Sylar fight in the main room of the Lighthouse and all the other crazy stuff that happened around us. Lance hates when I mention Sylar, like he’s a big bad boogeyman that can hear us say his name and is gonna come get us.” Joe is eyeing that pizza something fierce now, torn between the pizza and the comic book pages. But a growl in his stomach settles the issue for him. “Would… ummm can we uhhh.” He looks pointedly at the pizza table.

If it was possible for Lance to look any more pained, by the time Joe's finished they might have needed to call an ambulance.

So instead he tries to focus on the comics, flashing Silvia a grin while his buddy goes on (and on and on) in the background, "These are really good. You're good at this. You got that 'oh god panic' look on Joe's face down real well."

"And— yeah, no, there weren't any real drug dealers. I mean, Hailey ran into some… bad people recently," he admits with a grimace, "But that's because she refuses to come live inside the zone like a spaz. I'm working on talking her into it and I swear to God if even one person asks me about Sylar or Peter or any of that because of you, you are waking up glued to the roof, Joe!"

An apologetic look to Mateo, "Sorry. He, like, doesn't have a filter between his brain and his mouth."

“Go eat,” Silvia encourages. “Everyone should eat just don’t get grease on my pages.” The last part of that sentence is said as a death threat. One she probably means. You don’t mess with the art. She does turn her attention back to Mateo and Lynette. “I’m glad you like them,” she directs at Mateo. “I think these are even better than my last. I’ve decided my work shouldn’t just be comics, that they can be art that means something too, not just silly things I make.”

Her gaze then shifts to Lynette. “The drug dealers are just part of the story, not the real story. Joe and Lance’s Squid would make for a boring story. Well, maybe not boring but short. And I need an epic story, something that lasts over several comics… those drug dealers will be coming back for revenge later, just when the boys least expect it.”

Silvia now focuses on Lance. “So I guess I shouldn’t ask who Sylar or Peter are, huh? I mean, I don’t know who they are but I’m guessing it is a touchy subject.”

"Alright, Joe, I suppose I'll have to grant you that," Lynette says as far as them caring about her getting taken care of. She's indulgent. But then, she always has been with the kids. However much she would deny it later. Of course, when he goes on, she reaches over to ruffle his hair. "You all were a handful," she says, teasing away the compliment.

Her attention turns to Lance, though, at the note about Hailey. "Would it help if I came with you? I'd like to see her again. And maybe I can get her into one our rooms up here. It's meant to be… something like a safehouse. So, if you kids need anything, you can always come here."

She comes over to put a hand on Silvia's shoulder. "Art has always had an important role in changing the world. You can recite facts all day long and change no one's mind. But if you make them feel something, that has a way of clinging to them." She gives her a smile, encouraging. And proud. "And I have it on good authority that you can change people's lives already, mija." A couple people, at the very least.

The question about Sylar and Peter gets a sigh, though, and she looks over at the boys. "Throwing names around, but explaining nothing, huh?" Of course, that's all… extremely complicated. She turns to Silvia to explain in the simplest terms she can manage. "The Midtown Man. Twice over. Peter— " That gets another sigh. Her interactions with Peter were limited to a dark time in her own personal history, too, so it's a difficult subject for several reasons. "He meant well. Most of the time. Just in over his head. So," she says, switching to take in all three of them, "let's remember: Don't be like Peter." That comes with a bit of a crooked smile.

Don’t be like Peter sounds like the opposite of What Would Jesus Do? so Mateo takes it as a good piece of advice for them to listen to. He’d not been involved in anything that had happened in New York City, but everyone knows about the Midtown Man. Times two.

“I’m guessing that, no, we don’t want to hear too much about it.” The lack of a brain to mouth filter might be amusing, though. It tells him that if either of them had been trying to date his teenage daughter, it would probably have already been spilled.

“Hey, pranking a good friend is a childhood tradition. If it means well there’s no harm, and the squid’s a funny story. And the pictures make it even better.” Lance had been right, the expression alone made it worth doing. The longer they laugh about it, the better.

Joe accepts the hair ruffling with good grace and a wide smile. There are certainly things he has not lost from when he was young. Being a complete chatterbox is newer, but it's something that developed as he came fully out of his shell in Canada. Relative safety will do that for you, help you figure out a bit more of who you are. Also growing up from being a kid to being… a big kid. "Oh we were. Mostly Lance though. Glueing people's shoes to stuff, like the floor, or bannisters. Jimmy Choos or however that's said. Lance was definitely the bigger handful." All Joe ever did was horribly dangerous stuff cuz he was confident in his ability to keep him safe. "It probably wouldn't help, to go to Hailey. She's got a bunch of animals that she's taking care of. She's not good with people anymore, and so the animals kind of… like… replace us? I guess?" He glances sideways at Lance, then shrugs his shoulders as he heads for the pizza tables.

"I mean, to be fair Lynette, could /you/ even concretely explain the Peter Sylar Gabriel stuff? Cuz I don't think the guy that hung around at the Lighthouse for a bit was the same guy that everyone talked about like he was a monster. He was kinda intense, but overall pretty cool. Definitely didn't try to eat my brain or whatever." Joe nods his head a little bit. "Don't be like Peter. Don't blow up midtown and let another guy take the blame. He was kind of a jerk. The couple times I saw him at the Lighthouse. Probably all that guilt weighing down his soul." Joe nods sagely as he grabs a plate and throws a couple slices of pizza onto it. Trust Joe to think that the serial killer is the nice guy, and the one that was /trying/ to save everyone was the real bad guy.

“Art tooootally changes lives. Paintings and drawings, music and literature. Art totally changes people's lives. Not that I have an artistic bone in my body. Maybe that's why I have no filter as Lance puts it. Cuz I don't have an art to express myself with. Except talking." And then stuffing his face as he takes a huge bite of pizza and chews on it steadily. He finishes his mouthful before responding back to Mateo's statement. "Well, I mean I really am almost indestructible. Bulletproof, bladeproof, fire and electric resistant. They don't do much to my skin but they can sure fry my insides. But my skin gives me resistance to them. So Lance can play pretty much any prank on me and not have to worry about hurting me. Cuz like the Squid was chewing on my head. Do you know they have beaks? It ate some of my hair. I had to go get a hair cut. Which is where we met Raquelle."

"Don't be like Peter," Lance recites dutifully, bringing one hand up in a playful salute to Lynette, "Got it. And— ugh! She won't listen, she refuses to leave all of her stupid animals."

Frustration and worry as he walks over to the pizzas then, shaking his head, "I'm gonna have to figure out a way to get all of them into the Zone legally which, I don't know how."

He nudges his buddy as he grabs a slice, "You needed a haircut anyway."

“Hear that? You can always come here,” Silvia says with a grin. “That sounded like an open invitation if you ask me.” Her eyes go to Lynette’s hand on her shoulder and she places her own over it, squeezing her fingers lightly. “If I’ve already done some good for people, made some people happy, then I am happy.” She smiles broadly, first at Lynette, then at the others.

Discussion of Peter and Sylar have her momentarily interested. She’d heard all the stories, it’s just not something that had really affected her being so far away when it happened. “Don’t be like Peter, got it. New mantra.” She pauses, however. “What was that about eating brains though? Who is eating brains? Are there zombies? Do we need to have a zombie issue of Lance and Joe Adventures?” She rattles off questions almost as if she were Joe.

But Silvia is soon beaming again, her smile wide enough to brighten the whole room as art is discussed. “I like the idea of changing lives. I might want to… try some alternative art ideas. Some stuff that isn’t comics. Just to see what it’s like, see if I like it.” She doesn’t elaborate on it, instead suddenly making a beeline towards the pizza.

"No, I couldn't," Lynette says to Joe, "And that's why I don't bring them up." She gives him a quick wink there. And does not touch the addition of Gabriel. That's a whole other layer of that madness. Plus, last time she properly saw Gabriel, it was a bad day all around. And definitely for him. Poor Gabriel. She also doesn't correct the notion that Peter was a jerk. Because it's kind of true.

"Lance," she says, turning her attention to him, "maybe talk to some of the people here. There's one person with chickens, at least. Some of the properties have space, we might be able to work out a way to keep her animals inside the Safe Zone. And she could see them when she likes. It might be worth pursuing." She's not going to criticize the girl. They've been through a lot. Coping mechanisms are as unique as the people who have them. But she'll help, if she can. There are healthier ones, after all. "I'll help with the legality of it, if I can." Or sneak them in, however it works out.

Habits die hard.

"And it is an open invitation, Sil. There's always a place for the kids from the lighthouse, even if I have to get a bunch of sleeping bags and toss you all in a room." She smirks a little there, since that wouldn't exactly be a new set up for them. But her hand runs through her hair at Silvia's very important questions. "No one was eating brains," she says, "No zombies here. But I do think they might be a fun addition to the story. Can't go wrong with the classics."

“As long as I don’t have to clean up after them,” Mateo states, just so they all know. “I have to sweep up more rat shi— feces than you can believe at my current job.” It has really made him consider different employment. “An exterminator would make a killing around here.” He means that, even. Perhaps if the boy’s sister is as good with animals as it sounds, she could pied piper them right into the river. It would certainly save a lot of problems.

“Zombies are classics. I say go for it,” he responds, touching the teenager on the nose for a moment. With that gesture of affection, he starts over to the pizza, looking for the chili lime chorizo one specifically asked for. “I should probably eat soon, while the cheese is still soft.” Especially since the food shortage means that there really are starving people just down the street.

Or probably not actually starving yet, but worried they will be soon.

"I love our role models." Joe flashes a wide grin at Lance after Lynette talks about sneaking Hailey's animals in. He looks over at Silvia at her question about eating brains. "I mean I guess he didn't eat brains? But.. yeah it's complicated. Morale of the story is don't be a jerk. Or a broody can opener. In fact? Just be you." He winks at Silvia, still grinning. Then he's stuffing his face full of pizza, just nodding along with Mateo's advice to Silvia. He doesn't speak until after he's swallowed his food. The LHK's had plenty of bad role modeling, but dangit if some manners weren't actually drilled into them. Some manners in Joe's case. Some. "Hailey would befriend them and take them out to the safe zone with her." Joe's eyes roll slowly before he's stuffing more pizza in his maw.

"Zombies are totally cool though. Should totally do a zombie issue. Wasn't there a zombie thing that hit New York once? But zombies are cool. I mean not cool but they are classic. They totally work. Not sure how Lance would fight them though. Me I wouldn't have to worry about them. Couldn't bite me. Duuuude I could be Joe, super zombie guy. Or well… I was gonna say zombie killer but I'm not really that sort. Like…" Joe doesn't want to kill people. Even zombies. "I do feel kind of bad, up here eating delicious pizza while people down there… well… have you seen that peanut butter? It's like half oil. Not that I don't still eat it when Lance has it but still. Though to ba fair it's way better than nothing, and it's not like people were forced to move back to New York where they knew there'd be shortages and stuff so…" Joe's shoulders shrug slightly as he noms away at pizza. Feeling bad doesn't stop him from consuming his body weight in pizza.

"Alternative art?" Lance cocks his head a bit to one side, giving Silvia a curious look. Then he tries to say 'what do you mean' but it comes out as "Whff dyu mnnf?" because there's a piece of pizza that's going in as the words are coming out. She can probably get the gist, though. Lance, less good with the table manners sometimes.

He swallows finally, and flashes a smile over to Lynette. "Thanks. If— I mean if there's an emergency or something, maybe. I know we can stay at Gilly's place too, just… I mean, we've been staying at your places all our lives."

A bit sheepish, "It's nice to have a place that's ours, y'know?"

“Zombie stopper, zombie preventer, zombie…” Silvia practices her vocabulary as she tries to think of words meaning ‘Joe is a near pacifist’. “I’ll have to remember that for when I write the comics. I don’t want to make either of you crazy killing machines.” She chuckles lightly, turning to the pizza to grab a slice, plopping it down onto a plate.

Her attention shifts to Lance as he questions the ‘alternative art’ line. “Well, I mean, things other than comics. Regular art pieces, things like that. The floor of the salon needs to be done and I thought we were decorating your walls too.” Because she’s not going to say that she was considering making art on walls they didn’t quite have permission to paint.

"Maybe they could figure out a cure, then they'd have to wade into the hoards of zombies to try to save them all. You could still have action, but instead of hurting them, you end up injecting them with whatever the cure might be." Lynette spreads her hands there, as if to say it's just an idea.

She looks over at Lance, though, giving him a nod. "Of course. I understand. Just as long as you all know we're all still here for you, if you need us. By all means, make your own way in the world." And she does want them, too, but she never wants them to feel like they have to do it alone.

She ends up leaning against a counter, not taking the pizza herself, but seeming content that the others are enjoying it. "It's a special occasion," she says to Joe, maybe to help him feel better, "but I've been thinking about how we all might be able to pull together through the shortage. Maybe some sort of community meal set up, where people can bring what they can and everyone contributes and everyone eats." She looks over at Mateo, her eyebrows lifted in question. "Music, laughter, camaraderie. It can go a long way." She has thoughts. And experience. Granted, there are a lot more people in the Safe Zone than there were on Pollepel, but they also haven't had to resort to eating all those rats yet. So there's still some good news.

As Lynette does not partake in the pizza that the kids are all enjoying (including Mateo now, didn’t you know he’s only 10?), her husband notices. With a slice of cheesy, limey, spicy pizza going into his mouth, he gives his wife a long look, one that obvious says ‘you should eat too, mi amada’ without even having to say it out loud. Which is good cause he’s trying to chew. Instead, he steps closer and holds out a half eaten slice from his plate almost as if threatening to feed it to her. “It’s better than those other pizzas, I promise.” There’s that joking shimmer in his eyes.

“Just don’t do graffiti. I had to clean that up off a building the other day.” It had been a pain he’s not a painter he’s a janitor. But it seems his current job want him to do everything from cleaning up after rats to painting over graffiti on the buildings. But that’s what he gets for working for the city. “There’s plenty of people who want murals, though. Just ask the businesses first. They might even pay you if they like your work.”

It’s what he would have done in Argentina growing up. He had jobs at sixteen, doing things like cleaning buildings and— just about anything, really.

"It… I don't like hurting people. But I have hurt people when it's been necessary. And I did go on a couple of missions with Brian to rescue people during the war. I've…" Joe pauses, rethinking what he was about to say. Happy dinner time doesn't need child soldier war stories. "But uhhhh… yeah now I'm not at all sure where I was going with that? Soooo…." So Joe stuffs his mouth with more pizza. It's the easier out than trying to explain some of the stuff Lance and he have done. His head nods rapidly when Silvia mentions arting up Lance's walls. He chews and swallows his mouthful of pizza. "Yeah. Brynn and her are going to do up your walls Lance. I'm not really sure if you were part of that decision making process or not. Buuuuut yeah." He smiles big at his buddy, mindful enough to keep his mouth closed since he just had a mouth full of pizza moments before.

"Lady Zeus to the rescue!" Yeah, Joe just used Eve's name for Lynette. Cuz Eve has used it in front of him before, and it suits. "That's an awesome idea. And a reason to put the zombies down but not kill them. Do like rage zombies like from Zombieland or something. Not undead zombies. Cuz undead zombies clearly not cureable. But rage zombies totally curable." He notices Lynette not eating and so… he grabs a plate and throws a couple pieces of pizza on it before walking it over to her and presenting it to her with a broad smile. “Come on.” And only once she’s taken the pizza will he go back to eating his own. “Silvia and Brynn should start a business together. They can design the murals together and then Brynn can replicate them on the walls or floors or ceilings. I mean they could seriously make some money. Or food. I mean they could take payments in both. Just sayin. So they could do comic books and they could do an art business.”

“Thanks, Aunt Lynette,” Lance says with a grateful smile for her understanding. The support’s welcome, but independence is as well. Another bite of pizza, and he just shrugs at the decision-made-without-him for art on the walls, swallowing finally, “That sounds pretty primal. I’m good with it. Heh, maybe we can do up the whole building, if we get carried away…”

A glance to Mateo, and he clears his throat before adding quickly, “With permission. Of course.”

“Well I wouldn’t just tag something, it’s not like I’m in a gang,” Silvia chuckles lightly, apparently very amused at the thought of her being in a gang. “But I might be interested in doing that mural thing. I could argue that graffiti is less likely to be put on their wall if they have a beautiful mural there. And if someone tags a mural then they’re just going down.”

Tilting her head to the side, Silvia nods slowly at Joe’s zombie comments. “Something curable. Okay, I like that. Rage zombies are just as scary as undead zombies. Especially scary cause you don’t want to kill rage zombies.” She takes a bite of her pizza before grinning.She waits until after chewing (she’s polite, her parents taught her well) before she speaks again. “An art business would be so… primal.” She’s still getting used to the use of the word. “I would love to get paid for my comics or my art in general. And Brynn is so cool, her coloring thing is amazing.”

She pauses. “Oh, what if she colored my sand and I made different shapes and then we photographed it… that would be cool.”

Lynette looks back at Mateo, responding to his look with a wave of her hand. As if this might actually deter him. So when it doesn't, she laughs lightly and shakes her head at the very threatening pizza as well as the shimmer in his eyes. Her hand moves under his and she leans over to take a bite. It might be a strange pizza to some, but it gets an appreciative lift of her eyebrows and a noise that is definitely of approval. And once she's finished it, she leans in, pressing a kiss to his lips, too.

Sorry kids.

At least it's not a long one?

But they're mostly talking amongst themselves, and she's happy to let them. Of all the people Silvia could have befriended here, these are the exact ones she would have picked herself. It's the use of her nickname that gets her to glance over that way again, amusement in her expression. "Oh god, you've been hanging out with Eve," she says, but warmly. Because she adores Eve. And when Joe offers her the plate of food, she takes it and gives him a wry look. "Thank you," she says to him. And the she turns to Mateo, gesturing to his pizza. "Trade you a slice?"

"You know," she says over to the trio, "we managed to avoid everything from that future except that one word." Primal indeed. But at least she seems amused by it.

“Of course you can have my pizza, what’s mine is yours, right?” Mateo teases, returning that super quick kiss and hoping that it doesn’t traumatize poor Silvia. Or make her lose her pizza.

The talk of rage zombies, real zombies and now the future make him laugh. “Now we really are in a science fiction novel.” Like they weren’t already, with super powers, as the comics would have called them. He has heard her mention something about the future at one point, probably because at first she thought he could have been from it, but not that they had brought a word back.

Primal is a nice word. While he doesn’t understand why the children are using it as they are, in context, it’s easy to figure out what it meant. This isn’t one of those strange English things he doesn’t quite understand cause he grew up speaking English in Argentina and Mexico. Not that anyone would know this unless he said so— he doesn’t even have an accent, really. “I like primal,” he confesses. “It’s got many meanings. I think my ability could definitely be called primal.”

The way it’s roaring about in the back of his head in all it’s primal manners, it certainly could be.

Joe nods his head in agreement with Lance’s thanks. They are very thankful to know there’s support for them if they need it. But they really do want to try and make it on their own. Or at least mostly on their own. They’re building their own network of friends and allies beyond all their Ferry protectors. Silvia’s mention of colored sand has Joe’s head tilting to the side curiously. “That would be… totally freaking primal. How accurate are you with the individual grains? Like how complex of an image could you weave?” Joe asks of her, then pauses, glancing to Lynette as she goes in for the kiss.”And the wild electrokinetic seeks affection from her mate.” Done of course in the animal documentary boring drone voice.

The mention of Eve earns a roll of Joe’s eyes, but a smile as well. “Yeah well… it’s more that Eve has been like… crashing through the walls of our life before exiting via the fire escape window instead of you know… knocking on the door and leaving by the door.” Joe smirks, then peers at the pizza that Mateo is eating, and that Lynette seemed to enjoy. He ambles over and snatches himself a slice of it. Sorry not sorry, and takes a bite, tilting his head and chewing slowly. “That’s good! Lance!” Cuz you know, he isn’t two feet away. “Gotta try this!”

Joe glances Lynette’s way again. “Which future was Primal from? I don’t even remember. People were talking about all sorts of crazy when we were kids. A lot of it honestly went over our heads at the time. I don’t even remember where primal came from just that… it’s primal.” His eyes shifty dodge right and left before coming back to Mateo, eyes widening. “What’s your ability? Sorry if that’s personal. I love learning about people’s abilities. There’s so many awesome abilities out there. I maaaaay have asked Silvia if you guys had ever accidentally vacuumed her up the first time she went poof sand on us. Squid incident.”

"We could be a gang," Lance observes slyly, sweeping a hand out as if seeing the tag in his mind, "The Lighthouse Kings! Or something…" He chuckles, picking up another piece of pizza before Silvia's words have his eyes widen, "Oh, whoa. That'd be primal. You could do the best sand art, and it'd be you." Mind: blown.

He crunches into a crust, stepping over to see what Joe wants him to try before blinking over to Lynette bemusedly, "What do you mean 'from the future'? We, uh, I think we picked that up from, like, Cash and Adel."

Silvia looks back over at her parents and rolls her eyes at their kiss. She’s not opposed to them kissing, she just doesn’t like thinking about it or knowing it actually happens. She’d rather be blissfully ignorant. Taking another bite of her pizza, she looks towards Joe as she contemplates the strength of her abilities. “Well, I haven’t really tried to use my ability on a small scale, I have always just used it big. I suppose I could probably move smaller grains but I’ve never tried so much… it would be good practice.”

“Wait, what is this about futures?” That’s a story Silvia has not heard yet. And now she’s interested.

Pizza slices are exchanged and it might seem like her math is off because she comes away with less than she started with, but there's no way she can keep up with the kids in this regard. "My darling," Lynette says to Mateo with a gentle laugh, because they are definitely already living in a sci-fi novel. But she doesn't say so, perhaps assuming he'll pick up on her meaning without her needing to. "Your ability is definitely primal," she says although the word feels like it should have finger quotes around it, like she is not as sold on this being a great word as he is. Or maybe because she's a grown up and the slang isn't her own, so it has an unnatural flow to it.

Joe gets a look at his nature documentary, but he isn't wrong, so that's as far as it goes. Instead, she nods her head at his description of Eve's presence in their lives. "Eve has her own way of doing things. During the war— " She stops. And thinks about what she was about to say. And then edits. "She always showed up in a flourish."

A beat. "And we never vacuumed Silvia, for goodness sakes. Now, if we swept her up now and then, no one could blame us for that." She grins then, because it's a joke. Probably. "Fine control is definitely your next step, Sil. It might even help you in getting enough control over it to avoid going to dust in a panic." That's not a judgment, but said like it's just part of the learning process. Which Lynette knows that it is. "Wouldn't be a bad idea."

Of course… then the kids seem to not know what she means about the slang from the future and she looks puzzled for a moment. "Did no one explain it to you? I suppose you were young at the time." And it was crazy. "Cash and Adel and… Noa, Jolene, Benji, Ingrid— They were all from the future. A future. They came back to avert it, no one told you this? Really?" Surpriiiiiise. "They brought primal back with them and were slightly obsessed with coffee, from what I remember. And they all sort of ended up with us because a lot of them were kids of Ferrymen from their time and well. There everyone was on a little island. And, before you ask, none of them were mine, thank you very much. Sil is my one and only," she adds with a crooked smile. Her one kid is one that didn't have to ruin her figure, of course.

“You really weren’t kidding about the future thing?” Mateo responds after a second, looking at his wife with a quiet surprise cause, well, he hadn’t quite believed it til now. But anyway, instead of explaining his ability, he takes a deep breath and just, well, does it. Lynette feels it first, then they all see it. The lights flicker, like a brownout, and then one spot in space begins to change, then a second spot in space. It’s not an emergency, but he makes them with a second of each other, quick enough that the other effect doesn’t occur.

One small portal surrounded by flickering light appears next to him, another, next to the pizza.

He reaches through one, his hand comes out the other. That hand grabs onto a slice, and pulls it back through.

He grins at Lynette once he has the piece of pizza on his plate, because, well— that’s the first time he’s succeeded in using his ability for something totally mundane as picking up something across the room.

Joe ohs at Lance's question about the future and what not. He mumbles something around his mouthful of food that sounds like he might be agreeing with Lance's question? But really it's unintelligble cuz pizza in the mouth. He continues to chew on his pizza though. "Could totally be a gang. But not like a real gang. Like a fake gang. Like from a musical or something. Finger snapping our way down the road. I mean I know Westside Story is about real gangs but we'd be like one of the gangs from the actual musical. Not the real life part." He is oh so curious about the futures too, so when Silvia backs up Lance's question Joe nods his head firmly forwards, which really just looks like a Joe bobble head for a moment.

"Lynette we… I mean you know everything we've seen and heard. And we've done more since then. You don't gotta shield us." Joe's softly spoken response to her editing of what she was going to say about Eve. "Hey! It was a valid question. Like what if when she was younger she got startled by the vacuum and then…" He makes a fake vacuum sucking sound along with the motion of vacuuming, thankfully without pizza in hand, it's left on the late until he's done pantomiming. "We'll totally help you get fine control down Silvia. We've helped lots of kids get a handle on their powers. Like lotsa kids. It's a learning experience. It helped that most of the kids couldn't actually hurt me with their powers. Lance helped with encouragement. Like our cheerleader." He puts his plate down to pantomime some cheerleading with fake air pom poms.

“From… the future." Joe is… mind blown. He looks over at Lance, and then stares at him, then looks back at Lynette, then back to Lance. "Bro…" He looks dumbfounded. He puts his plate of pizza down he's so befuddled by this news. "What?" He looks from Lance back to Lynette, scrunching his face up. "No wonder they were all so… like… familiar with us. They probably knew our adult selves! If… if we lived that is… that's whoah." Joe needs to sit down, but he also needs more pizza, so he settles for lifting his plate up and taking another bite of his slice. When Mateo demonstrates his ability Joe… throws a pizza crust through it. Sure Mateo can reach through his portal but… can other things go through? FIELD TEST! He chucks a pizza crust through the portal and waits to see what happens. "THAT'S TOTALLY PRIMAL!"

As Joe decides to “test” his portal, the piece of pizza crust sails through the little electric ring and lands on the other side, bouncing off of Mateo. Indeed, more than his hand can go through. But immediately after, the portals collapse on each other in a flash of light that seems to feel the air with a slight taste of static for a moment.

"Wait, what? Adel, and— Cash? Cash is from the future? Why didn't she tell me?" Lance is having a hard time deciding if she should be offended that she didn't tell, or awed that she's from the future. Because that's totally primal. His jaw slack for a moment as he looks between the others, then to Lynette. "I'm gonna have to ask her next time she comes by…"

Which is the cue for something to distract him, and distract him it does! That pizza slice trick is watched with wonder, the one in his hand forgotten for the moment. "That is primal! Wow! What's your range?"

“I like being the one and only,” Silvia says proudly, looking back towards Lynette. “Maybe I will practice though… I’d like to get better than I’ve been so far. You never know when that might save your life. I want to be ready for the next time.” It’s a little sad that she already expects there to be a next time, but that’s a bit of realism on her part—there is likely to be a next time, that’s the world they live in. But what was this about people from the future?!

“Oh oh oh, that’s so cool. El futuro! And it sounds like they saved the day and everything. I never thought to put time travel into my comics but now I want to.” She’s already starting to wonder what she’d be like in the future.

Lynette watches Mateo with a lift of an eyebrow, because she knows it's coming before the others do. And when he grabs pizza through it, she can't help a laugh. But there's some celebration in the sound, since it is the first time. She doesn't say so in front of the kids, but the look she gives him is an impressed one.

As far as shielding them from her own experiences in the war, Lynette only gives Joe a crooked smile. Because she's still going to. Because they've seen enough, and too fast, in her opinion. "These kids have been learning the ins and outs of abilities for as long as I've known them, Sil. They could definitely help."

But she looks back to Mateo, giving him a nod. "I never kid about time travel shenanigans." Because she disapproves of them, see. "None of us knew who they were, at first, because they sort of infiltrated and were looking for ways to change things without being too obvious. But that didn't last. Eventually, we were having dreams about the future they came from and it was… not a good place. So we helped as much as we could." She looks over at Lance, her head tilting some. "Maybe she didn't want to have a bunch of questions leveled at her that she didn't want to answer," she says. It's just a guess, of course.

“This time travel talk sounds even more complicated than…” Than other things. But right now Mateo is focused on the fact that he didn’t vacuum up what was left of his pizza, or hurt anyone either. It had been a success, and one he can’t help but feel proud of as he takes a bite out of pizza that tastes exactly like it should. No crisping, no metallic electric taste. He’d call that a success.

“My range is only as far as I can see, and I don’t like to try going further.” It sounds as if he has. Maybe it turned out badly. Lynette would probably know that. But either way, he looks pleased with himself, and even more so when he meets his wife’s eyes. After all, she’d taught him. “Nette might be able to teach you some too, Sil. She taught me a lot about my ability. But I understand if you’d rather work with people closer to your own age.”

And Mateo, at least, approves of these kids so far. It’s easing his dad-panic about his teenage daughter already having boys in her life.

"What do you mean next time she comes by Lance? What do you mean next time she comes by Lance??" Joe turns to stare at Lance. Why has his buddy been meeting in secret with an older woman? Then his cheeks flush red and he ohs, not very softly either. "Oh I uhhh nevermiiiiiind. I don't need to know the torrid details." Joe sidles away from his buddy, his cheeks still flushed bright red. "Uhh so yeah anywaaaay…" And yeah Joe is interested in Mateo's answer to Lance's question, but he's also got one of his own. He walks closer to him and drops his voice, though it's not at all a whisper. "So could you like say… open a portal behind someone's head? I mean theoritically of course." His eyes flicker pointedly to Lance though, and his fingers pick up another pizza crust, using a flick of his wrist to pantomime a throwing motion. “

Sil, you totally would be like sandstorm girl. Come in like a raging sandstorm tornado. I AM YOUR DOOM! FEAR ME MORTALS!" He whirls around like he's the sandstorm tornado himself. "And then just burst into pretty colored sand art portraits and stuff. Leave everybody confused and stunned. Would be primal." He pauses, glancing to Lynette then. "Primal is really from the future? Isn't that like… a paradox? We only know Primal cuz future people brought the word back, but now they'll have primal cuz we know primal? But we only know Primal cuz they knew Primal.." Joe's features scrunch up slowly in confusion as he lays out said paradox. "Time travel hurts mah brain." Joe sighs, but does brighten up a bit with a glance over to Silvia. "And you should definitely put time travel in there Silvia. It would be pretty cool to do. Like future Silvia comes back in time to warn us cuz all the bad stuff happens. Or something."

"What happens if something is in your portal when it closes? Nevermind I probably answered my own question. Probably icky and horror movieish." Joe's head wobbles up and down a few times. "All the Ferry people are pretty good with helping out with abilities. Buuuut we're better." Joe offers with a bit of a smug smile on his face. "We're like generation 2. Ferry 2.0 or something. I guess… I mean I guess we actually are aren't we?" He asks, tilting his head to the side a bit. "I mean… sorta? I guess not the Ferry mission statemetn so to speak, though I seem to be trying to go for that too. Oh heck I don't know."

"Wh— no!" Lance reaches over to smack his hand into the back of Joe's head. Again. Which as usual mostly hurts Lance's hand, because his friend has a pretty damn hard scalp. He rolls his eyes so hard it's a miracle they don't tumble out of his head, "She taught me how to use my ability and all, that's it… huh." A blink. "I wonder if she knew future me."

It'd explain some things! (Lance has no idea how much it would really explain.)

After finishing off another slice of pizza, he swallows and offers to Silvia, "Cash taught me tai chi and some other, like, meditation practices? Maybe they could help you with that whole… fwoosh sand thing when you get startled." Genuinely offered from the sound of it, not teasing her about it.

Then he’s going back for more pizza. Because it’s been awhile since he’s had good pizza.

“I will take any help with my ability that I can get,” Silvia’s tone is warm and welcoming—she likes the idea of working with others to improve herself. “I can’t really go wrong with my parents or my friends. So porque no los dos?!” She grins broadly and moves to finish off her slice of pizza before focusing on the others around her again.

“Sandstorm Silvia will be my future persona in the comics. She will be gorgeous with long flowing hair and very deadly. But even if she’s deadly she won’t kill anyone because she’s not like that. Maiming is okay though.” She taps her chin thoughtfully. “And I’ll be certain that she comes with the zombie cure so that they can start kicking butt and saving lives right away. That will probably have to wait until issue three. Can’t bring in zombies and time travel too quickly after all.”

The pizza is finished, crust and all, and Silvia cleans her hands with a napkin before going to retrieve the two pages of The Adventures of Lance and Joe. Setting them safely aside, she beams at the assembled. “We should do this more often… I like having almost all my favorite people in one room.”

"I don't think you should ask her about that," Lynette says to Lance mostly, but Joe gets folded in with a look. "I had to find out I died in their future in— gosh, two years. It was not a fun conversation and I do not recommend it. Plus, that's not our future, so it hardly matters what they knew about us then." Right? Yes, that makes sense.

"It isn't a paradox, Joe, because that future is still there, it just isn't ours anymore. We took a different fork in the road and now we're here instead of there. The slang just jumped along with them." It makes perfect sense. Or, at least, it seems to, to her.

She lets out a heavy sigh and looks toward Mateo again. And she is proud, because he's worked hard and come a long way since she first met him. So she steps over so slide her arm around his waist before she looks over at the kids. "Ability training later. Pizza now. And we have a movie line up to make anyone jealous," she notes, a command decision being made to forcefully turn this train around. And probably toward Star Wars.

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