1963-11-25 - Two Golds and a Wildcard
Summary: Elixir, Adam, and Maximus meet, and discuss… biology, politics, society.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
maximus adam josh 

It's been two days since the President of the United States was assassinated, and these two days have been hard on Elixir. He knows if he were there, he could have saved the man— saved the freaking President of the United States. That one action could have forever changed the course of mutant-human relations. That could have changed everything.

Of course, he wasn't anywhere near there and had absolutely no means to predict what was happening, so blaming himself is sorta kinda stupid, but logic does not apply. So, Josh is wandering around Mutant Town. He finds this kid with crutches, and as he passes he lets his hand settles on the kid's shoulder. Poor kid is an obvious mutant, green, a bit reptillian. Probably suffered some kind of assault. "Take care, kid." Josh says, and concentrates a moment: the bone knits together, the muscles strengthen and the inflammation goes away, "You won't need the cast anymore." And then he's walking away, not looking back, not saying anything.

In that moment, Josh went from a handsome, tanned, blond haired guy to a guy who looks to be made of living gold. But he has his yellow hoodie, so he pulls it up over his head. He has his scarf, so he wraps it around. He has his gloves in his pockets, so he slips them on. Even in Mutant Town standing out isn't always the safest.

Finally, Josh comes to the Eight Ball, and steps in. Here, this is a safe place. The mutants are… subdued. No one is happy that Kennedy died: more then a few hoped he'd be a reformer on the Mutant Issue. No one knows what to think of Johnson.

But here, Josh can push back his hoodie, and his gold and blond hair stands out, but no one cares. He makes his way to the bar, and waves, "Tequilla. Patron. A whole bottle."


Adam sits at a corner table, momentarily by himself, although he had a few visitors over time. Men and women, drawn to him, some just by his personal magnetism - some because he guided them, because he laid a subtle hand on the marionette strings of their souls and flicked his fingers just so. He likes their adoration, but finds himself quickly bored. Even the strange looking ones, with a bird's bones or a voice like static in the ear - so ordinary underneath.

Adam has very little interest in ordinary.

He does take note of the golden boy who arrives, his own complexion more of amber and honey than the pure metallic of Josh. Still, it's something. Adam swirls the brandy in his glass, "A whole bottle. Do you not get drunk easily or do you crave oblivion?" he calls out evenly, always assured his voice will carry.


Maximus is already there. Slumming. Looking for the sort of people that do what he wants for money. Or, who take his money and disappoint him. Loyal help is so hard to find. "Strange, I was wondering the same thing…" comes a voice from nearby, coiling and elegant, refined with a 'not from around here' accent. But when viewed, he doesn't seem like a freak either. Just. A guy. A guy in a suit shirt and suit pants, no tie, no jacket, buttons undone to the 3rd one, even though he's not really showing off a muscled chest. Kinda more on the pale, intellectual side. But man, his complexion is nice. Not /gold/, but well kept. The sort of complexion you get when you can have milk baths and rare oils. He has four shots in front of him. One is gone. The other 3 are filled with different alcohols.


Maximus is at the bar!


Glancing aside at the call, Josh's expression is startled— he's seen more then a few mutants in blue, a couple in green, and a couple odder variations. But gold? No matter the shade, he's never seen another mutant who even approaches the appearance of his powered coloring. Then he looks over to Maximus, and glancing between the two he can't help but grin, and Josh does grin well.

"I get precisely as drunk as I mean to get and not one bit more: which means I can drink as much as it pleases me and there's no danger to it. Plus, it helps to share." He waves to the bartender, holds up three fingers, and grabs the bottle in one hand and the shot glasses in the other (after handing over cash, of course).

He cocks his head to Max, and heads over to the corner where the other Golden Guy is, and helps himself to a seat. The guy eyes Adam for a long moment, "You're the first not-me I've seen with a complexion approaching mine." he remarks, a quick and confident grin touching his features, "I'm Elixir." From there, he pours out some shots in the center of the table.


Adam selects his shot with deft fingers, his thumb and middle finger at the rim of the glass. "Elixir. A name chosen, not given," he says. "You don't appear to be a liquid."

He takes a shot, throwing it back rapidly in imitation of what he's seen others do. He's spent a great deal of time in bars and taverns.

"People who drink to excess do so in either joy or grief, out of sadness or elation. You do not feel elated. You feel saddened. You would paint over it with something else," he says.

Maximus he assesses from a distance, regarding him the way one predator might regard another, with a mingling of respect and wary attention. Not that Adam is afraid - he's never been afraid. But the man is hard to read and gives the aura of a shark amongst a school of fish. Adam doesn't have a place in the ecosystem yet - he's more akin to the student watching through the aquarium glass.


There's certainly a reason that Maximus hasn't approached the golden lumberjack over there to see if he'd like to minion-up for cash. He can sense the ones that aren't minion material. Noooo, that guy is made from something else. As wisdom oozes from his mouth though, Max's curiosity is piqued, and sharp blue eyes fixate in a way many people find uncomfortable. He starts to slide off his stool when another man, next to him, leans in and whispers into his ear. Max jabs at him in an annoyed fashion and flashes his teeth. The only part of the conversation that could be heard is "…am I not?" Then he goes about plucking up his 3 shots that are left. Clink. Clink. Clink.


"I am the cure for what ailes you." Elixir grins to Adam with a slow nod, "I'm also Josh, but that's my slave name;" Says the oh so white and gold guy who maybe is trying too hard, "the name given by parents who disowned me, the name recorded by a government that hates me, the name held by a society who thinks I'm not a part of it." He shrugs, "Really, I don't mind going by Josh. But here, where I'm with my people, Elixir is more real to me."

Josh sighs softly, at mention of sadness, and he downs his shot with ease: it helps when you can selectively turn off certain nerves with a thought. "If I had been there, I could have saved him. President Kennedy. I thought maybe we had a chance to get through to him— to show him how wrong it is to oppress us— and if I had been there…" He lifts a hand, tugging off a glove to show the golden skin of his delicate yet very precise fingers, "… he wouldn't die. Can you imagine the headlines, if a mutant had saved the President? It would have changed everything."

He looks over to Maximus, tilting his head curiously as he regards the fellow for a long moment, but he doesn't call out to the man, yet. If he's distracted by a fellow, he'll work it out, or he won't. But he's curious: am I not?


Adam considers, "If a mutant had saved the president, then those who hate mutants would accuse him of being behind it. You'd become a target - the eye of the storm. If bigotry were based in reason, perhaps such an act might persuade. But it is not. The distaste for mutants lives in the realm of emotion, of instinct. Like all animals, humans are hardwired to survive, pass on their genes. Mutants mean that not only might they becoming obsolete, extinct - but that the very mechanism of breeding that has perpetuated the species for thousands of years may now be betraying them and giving birth to their downfall," he says.

"I speak at the primal level, of course - when an ape sees a human and begins flinging its feces in disrespect and wrath, it is much the same. It is unfortunate to be struck with shit, but think how the hands of those who throw it."

Maximus gets another flicker of his glowing gaze, his own poet's shirt unbuttoned almost to his navel and showing far more in the way of musculature. To Elixir's health senses, he must seem strange indeed - a being that has never known illness, never known pain except vicariously. Perfect.

"That one, I suspect, is of the type who bites back."


Like it or not, Elixer and Adam are both destined to be inflicted with Maximus, for the man, his drinks all pinched in one hand, moves to that shadowy, back table that is lit by the two literally golden personalities. "Oh I /do/. But only if bitten first." He wets his lips and rakes his gaze over the two of them. "I heard that the Prince of Asgard killed the president. If that's true…then the consequence of succeeding would be to put a target on your own back. From Asgard. Meddling royals not even from this planet." A pause. "You two are really something. Can you clip your nails and melt it down?" He scrunches his face and he doesn't ask it in a creepy tone, but it still might be.


"Oh, don't get me wrong, some people will be stupid no matter what." Elixir nods his head slowly, "But Kennedy would know a mutant saved him, and I think he's more reason-oriented then most idiots, and if there's one person in the world who can shape policy and change things— its him. Besides, I'm not afraid of being a target." He handwaves away any threat of danger, literally.

"Healing myself is trivial." Of course, he doesn't know he's immortal, yet. He hasn't died and had his power live on and bring him back, yet. But that doesn't lessen his confidence in the healing he does have. "I don't disagree with anything you're saying, I've examined the X-Gene closely. Mutants are the next stage of evolution: its inevitable the baselines will fade. But it doesn't have to be violent: after all, we're not a different species, we're an *emerging* species. We come from them. My parents were baselines."

He gives a long look over at Adam for a moment, and offers his hand as if to shake. Does Adam know this custom? Perhaps, perhaps not.

He looks to Maximus and wrinkles his nose, "I don't know if I believe this Asgard connection, its too… chaotic. This Loki guy shows up on tv and says, we have to look past our differences? Right? Then he goes and kills Kennedy? Its just… too stupid. I don't believe in stupid aliens. Besides, I'm just seriously not worried about a target on me." Then he grins at Maximus, "I can't explain the pigmentation issue, it makes no sense biochemically, but when I use my power to heal someone I turn gold. If I use my power to hurt someone, I turn black. It just is. Its an… oddity of my mutation."


Adam shrugs slightly, "Perhaps. I have only the briefest acquaintance with the man's character, secondhand. And no, it doesn't have to be violent - but the species from whence your kind emerge has a long, long history of violence. They have difficulty when their own species believes in a different prophet for the same God - it has lead to war and murders for millenia. Now you may united them by giving them something newly other to hate," he says. "Of course, I am sure there are those - such as this man - who won't be very interested in letting them get the violence out of their system," he says.

He does allow Josh to take his hand, letting the other man's power flow through him, examining him. His genome is like nothing else Josh will have ever seen, a constructed thing with double the chromosomes of a normal man, nano-engineered with filaments cloned and grown.

"If this man is truly Loki - or merely thinks like the god of myth - then he is a creature of chaos and deceit. Whatever you may believe, you may most assuredly not believe anything that he wants you to believe."


Maximus stands for another moment, then just sits with them. "I like the rumors. The papers are full of them. Is she…isn't he…so much conjecture and swiiirling of opinion and conspiracy. It is vibrant, and lively, and interesting." He is animated with a sense of excitement over the whole matter, like what might be true isn't the point. He studies Elixer, and follows the line of the handshake back to Adam, and tilts his head curiously, "You seem to know so much. Is your mutation…" He lifts his hand up to tap his own temple three times.


Josh stares at Adam for a long moment after the handshake is done, frowning. "That's impossible." he breathes, eyes widening, "You're entire bio-organic system is in perfect balance: and I mean perfect, and that's impossible. Not even my system is so finely tuned and I can control it _completely_. You also have too many genes and they bear only the vaguest relation to either baselines OR mutants. What are you?" He sounds… astonished. Wide-eyed, he doesn't quite know how to process this.

But he tries to act normal— after all that, normal? "Believe me, I know humans and their violence, and that's why the Brotherhood is rising. No people in all of history have ever been successfully oppressed: the revolt always happens. Always. I don't want anything to do with killing or war, I'm a *healer*— I'm the most powerful healer I've ever heard about— I can heal *death*— so understand when I say this: I have no desire for violence and death. But."

"I lost everything and homo sapiens has pushed me to the edge of the cliff and is trying to push farther, and I won't fall to my death. I won't." He glances over at Maximus, reaching out casually to lay a hand on the man's arm, "Hey, rumors… rumors. Rumors are crazy, don't get me wrong. All this sensational bullshit flowing all the time. I can see why its interesting, but where's the truth in it?"


ROLL: Maximus +rolls 1d20 for a result of: 19


Adam smiles beatifically at Josh, "I am an impossibility. I am an achievement. I am a Platonic ideal made manifest. Mary Shelley subtitled her Frankenstein the Modern Prometheus - I am much like that, ascending with divine fire in my hand. Those who created me, they called me simply Him," he says with a touch of amusement. "I chose Adam, because it is the Hebrew word for man and because I am the first of my kind. I do not know if there will be others. Not from the same source, at least. I made certain of that when I emerged from my chrysalis," he says.

"I possess greater intellect than a human, yes," he responds to Maximus. "Although humans don't live up to their entire potential in that regard. But I think I'm doing well for being about four months old," he says.


Maximus has just witnessed Josh reading out Adam's amazing statistics, following the handshake, and he puts 2 and 2 together as 4, for a change. "Like…shaking a man's hand and taking information from him? There's truth in that." He leaves his lips parted and completely allows the touch. His eyes grow sharp. Abruptly, he slaps a hand over Elixer's hand, attempting to trap it there. "Or is this how you flirt? Did you hear that? He's four months old. They're going to shut this place down." He chuckles and spreads his mouth too wide when he does, wrinkling up his cheeks. "And perhaps arrest you." What Josh receives from Maximus is less overtly engineered, though certainly…orchestrated…with a complex mixture of human and not. No diseases, maybe some mild distress over the pollution present in the city that he's not accustomed to, but its not even something Max notices. His heart rate is steadily and slowly rising.


Josh gives Adam a skeptical look: as much as everything he says reads right with what Josh's biokinetic scanning tells him… It just can't be. But what else can explain what he sensed? Every gene is different— and perfect. "Careful, Adam. Never assume you're better then someone else. You never know for sure, and I've seen some truly awesome powers. I'm not saying you aren't one of those awesome powers, — made? whatever you are — but you're a biological entity like any other. If somehow your potassium and sodium balance went out of wack, you'd die like anyone else. You may be… the idealized human. But you're still human… mostly. Hrm."

Then he turns to Maximus he captures his hand, and Josh grins, "I'm the most powerful biokinetic I've ever heard of. I can heal death. Reading someone's biology? Trivial." But Maximus didn't stop him, and he reads the other man, and looks no less surprised. There's a moment, and he purges the pollution from the man's system with ease and restores his system to a pure state, then adds, "I flirt in a lot of ways, but I'm out of practice. I wasn't trying to there, just trying to capture a baseline or x-variant, but you're not that at ALL. There's something *not human at all* about you. Genes I've never seen, in configurations I've never seen. Yet, they're amazing and not entirely dissimilar to the x-gene sequences. "

Then Josh has to laugh, "I'm not at all afraid of someone trying to arrest me. Grab me, go to sleep. It'd be funny to see the cops trying to get ahold of me to put the cuffs on." He pauses, then adds, "Not that I'm against flirting, mind you."


Adam considers, "I think the gentlemen is engaging in flirtation himself, but of a different sort. Some flash a leg or tickle a whisper in the ear. Our new friend thinks his most attractive quality is his power. Not just the superhuman variety, but his willingness to use it. You feel like I imagine Napoleon might have felt, at least, from an empathetic sense. You have very high self-regard and your impulse control tastes more like a learned trapping than anything in which you've invested. Your sadism is showing," he says. There's no judgment in his tone.

"One might almost read that as a threat, Elixir, couched carefully. I have no reason to seek your enmity. I am aware of my limitations as they exist - for now. I also feel strongly that I will transcend them in time. I am just getting started, after all."


Adam has partially disconnected.


Maximus releases Josh's hand and leans back in his chair, listening to Adam give Elixer the full rundown, just from observation. He assumes it isn't about himself, since he has yet to use any powers. He cackles and seems /highly/ amused. "Oh ho ho, this I like. Sadism? Ah…I don't know. He does not seem /sadistic/. More like…" He makes a cluck sound with his tongue a few times, "brazen. I like it. I need to see /more/ of you, Elixer. Drink deep. I could enjoy having a friend like you. What I am barely matters. In such…/powerful/ company, if there is trouble, I can rely on the two of you." He lifts a hand at the elbow and unfurls his fingers in a relaxed gesture. He's in for a surprise when he finds out its about himself!


"If one reads it as a threat, one is reading too closely between the lines: I am a healer." Elixir says soberly, "I save lives, and if I can do nothing else— and it is rare I can do nothing else— I make the pain go away. I protect my people first and foremost, and above all else. I'm simply pointing out that you are not a god, Adam. You may have been designed to be the platonic ideal, but don't let yourself consider yourself so high. You are still a body: a body that breathes, drinks, eats. A body of very, very similar design to everyone elses, even if it is refined to a point I have difficulty understanding how it is possible. You are genes, proteins and enzymes in action. Refined to a remarkable degree, but not so fundamentally different from anyone else."

Leaning back, he snags the Patron bottle and pours out shots again, tossing his back and turning a grin on Maximus, "Hey, I'm all for you seeing more of me. Totally sold on this concept." He laughs, his golden expression so easy and fresh, "And I'm always open to friends… you never did give your name, friend. I don't mind so much the definition of 'brazen'. Brazen is a good word. And who the fuck needs shame? The baselines define these rules and say what I should be ashamed of, but I am homo superior. Their rules don't apply to me." Perhaps he needs an echo of the speech he just gave Adam.


Adam cocks his head, "Why is it that you think gods don't have such things? I believe one of the largest religious cults of this part of the world is, in fact, very specific about such things. This is my body, this is my blood," he says. "What would your power have found in Christ, I wonder? Just another man - or something more like me?"

"He speaks boldly, yes," he says to Maximus, now fully engaged in his analysis of Josh, "But he doesn't entirely believe it. He wants to. Perhaps to justify himself. You said you turn black when you hurt someone - that would indicate that you have experienced it. Perhaps willingly. It is easier to escape the guilt for breaking rules if you can convince yourself they never applied," he says. He's been reading a lot of psychology lately, Jung and Kinsey and Freud. "Shame tends to be a learned response, reinforced by societal taboos created to regulate sexuality and obedience to one's elders - a way of the fathers to protect their own supremacy, by limiting the access of his sons to the breeding stock. Of course, Freud largely suggests this out of pure conjecture - his own fantasies might be bleeding in."


Maximus tilts his head towards Adam. "Oh I think this is all fascinating. While others are crying about how humans and mutants need to live together in peace, the two of you are opposite. You are…/better/. You are the evolution…the /destiny/ of mankind which you," he looks at Elixer, "call baseline, as if they are part of an experiment." Now he turns his gaze on Adam, "And you…are the result of one. This is wonderful." He really does seem pleased. Tickled to death. Just hopefully not death by Josh getting all black and doomy on them. "For now, Max is fine. We can get into details another time. If you want to meet up again, leave a message at Hotel Chelsea."


"Those are alegories, Adam." Josh says with a soft sigh and a shake of his head, "Symbolism. Also, its pure fiction: if Jesus even existed two thousand years ago I doubt he said anything like that. Until recently mankind had a pisspoor method of maintaining and preserving knowledge."

But then there is talk of his black form, and Elixir grows more serious. Frowning. "I do what I have to do. Sometimes that means I heal people. Sometimes that means I don't. Whatever guilt I feel is mine to bear: I did what I did, I am what I am. I don't pretend it didn't happen."

He looks over to Maximus for a moment, and shrugs, "Baseline is the best term I can come up with. 'Regular' doesn't fit, 'normal' implies mutants aren't normal, which I reject. The baselines are the base class of human. Mutants are the next stage. That doesn't affect my politics: I think we need to live together in peace. The difference?"

Elixir frowns, "I'm not willing to put up with being killed anymore. Did you not hear about Sacramento? The baselines burned their Mutant Town to the ground, countless mutants massacred. There's only so long before this one turns into a concentration camp. There's only so long before one of the baselines gets the idea that the solution of the mutant problem is to remove the mutants."

"The Brotherhood won't accept that."

"Hi, Max. I'll meet up with you then."


Adam considers, "Well, that would remove the mutant problem, so they wouldn't be wrong. Unethical, perhaps, but not wrong. I am certain there are mutants who think life would be much better if they could just get rid of the humans, as well," he says. "Belonging to neither tribe, I have little investment, although my sympathies lie with mutantkind. I know what it is to be different," he says.

"It was a pleasure, 'Max'" Adam says, inclining his head towards the Inhuman. "Ordinary is the word I use. Ordinary humans. The common species, like the cockroach or the goldfish. But I have been lucky, in that no one has tried much in the way of violence against me. Well, not against me directly. I may have intervened on the behalf of others a time or two."


Maximus rises, grabs one of the shots off the table, and drinks it. "Gentlemen. This has been…very enlightening. That I could stay. But, I have an appointment in the morning." He smiles 'innocently', except it isn't. "I hope to see you both around. And until then…" Max simply nods and sets the empty glass down with a click. He doesn't excuse himself, but he does give them each a last look before he heads off.


Josh can't help but frown at Adam, "They would be wrong, and if they try— and they will try— they will find this war is far more real and far more deadly then they ever imagined. I don't know any mutant who wants to get rid of humans: we come from humans. We are an emergant species, not a divergent one." He shakes his head, and waves to Max at his departure, but looks back to Adam, "Ordinary is fine, but I stand by baseline. It accurately represents the position that homo sapiens is one track, but homo superior is taking a different track— rising above the baseline. But ultimately, naming doesn't matter."

Elixir grunts and lifts his tequilla and takes a few deep chugs straight from the bottle, without any pain— again, turning off nerves selectively. "You're more like us then you are like them. Eventually, Adam, you will have to choose sides. They won't stop with Sacramento. They are afraid of us. They will look at you and see us, and only someone like me will be able to see you're not."

"I'm sorry, but you will have to choose a side eventually."

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