Hello, thar. Meinos Kaen here!
"So... How did I do?" Catarina asked as Sienna removed the electrodes, suction cups and the single needle from her body. Grace was sitting in a nearby chair.
"Just as I thought. Splendidly." The nurse declared as she removed the needle last, letting Grace heal the small injury on the young girl's arm with her Skill. "Really, it was either that or you were a Survivor to boot. But while You may have been hard to kill even with poison, pain remains while the body takes time to break down the dangerous substance into its molecular components.” Catarina turned to her teacher with a soft gasp. The redhead just smiled amiably. Details, her gaze said. “So, the only explanation for your continual survival of your body's habit of sweating venoms was...” She trailed off. The other two occupant of the room stared, not amused by her try at suspence. “Oh, come on! Fine. Catarina's body spontaneously produces and circulates in her bloodstream a substance which completely nullifies the poison harmful effects and also act as a local painkiller. Just in case. Good thing.” The nurse raised a vial full of a bright yellow liquid. “This much would have killed three elephants.”
“... So, my blood is, what, the ultimate antidote?” Sienna let out a thoughtful hum as she placed the vial in a nearby refrigerator among a bunch of its peers.
“Well, I still don't know if the substance is a general antidote for everything or if your body changes the substance's composition every time you start producing venom.” The nurse brought a hand to her chin, staring at space as she mumbled to herself.
“I think we lost her to science.” Grace chuckled as Sienna turned away from them, still whispering. “I think Thomas was the most normal skill user she examined today.”
“And he's a genius who shoots lightning.” Catarina sighed, stepping off the bed and setting her naked feet on the cold tiles, suddenly feeling tired. “I can't die nor be harmed by my own Skills. Good. Craptastic. So I will just go on inflicting pain unpunished.”
“Catarina, please stop talking like bad literature.” Grace said, repeating Jason's words from that morning. The younger girl actually smirked at that. “Have you ever lost control over your Skill again?”
“No. And I can control them perfectly, no malformations or anything. I know that my paranoia about not touching people is just that, paranoia. It's just...” She sighed and then blushed. “After... Well, I've never... Again. And I've read of... Incidents. Of people with a tendency of losing it when... You know. That isn't paranoia.”
“Oh.” Grace blushed, understanding what Catarina meant. She had been living in college until the past year, after all. There had been reported cases of individuals losing control over their Skills in the... Throes of passion. A couple had been funny, like the girl with the sonic powers which shattered most of the windows in her block or the mother of a telepath who suddenly became unwilling eavesdropper of her son's private moments. Then, there were the more dangerous ones, like the girl with superstrength. Her room-mate hadn't elaborated further. She hadn't needed to. And indeed, Catarina's powers were of the kind that could become dangerous if out of control. “Well... Have you ever asked your APT if you could get an S-Guard?”
“Yes.” Catarina suddenly narrowed her eyes again. That told Grace everything she needed to know about the results.
“Well, no problem. Since I already have to craft the inhibitor for Thomas.” Sienna suddenly interjected, handing the young S her clothes back.
“Craft? You mean you're going to make it yourself?” Catarina collected the garments with a raised eyebrow. Grace was similarly surprised. “Are you an engineer or a nurse?”
“Hmm... Now, that's...” The brunette raised an index finger, winking. “A se-cret!” The two just stared, and she rolled her eyes. “Jason would have gotten it.”
“Speaking about Jason, and passing over your earlier exchange...” The teacher stressed the word enough to make even Catarina cringe. “Can you share with us your theory about his powers yet?”
“Oh, now, Grace. Patient doctor confidentiality won't let me.” The nurse chuckled, turning around again and leaning against a nearby desk. “Give me two days to figure it out. Then, after I tell Jason, he will choose if to tell you himself.”
In the end, it had took her just one day. That was the reason she had suddenly interrupted Grace's lesson and asked if she could talk to Jason in private. “So... We're all alone.” But the young boy either had misunderstood or he liked acting oblivious.
“Yes. But I think you may have already forgotten about the age thing I mentioned?” He rolled his eyes and straightened himself, uncrossing his arms from behind his head and actually sitting in his chair as Sienna settled in another one, in front of her, legs crossed as she held a reader in her hands. “It took a while, but I managed to get a fix on your Skill.” She grinned. “I must say, it is quite the intriguing one.”
“Intriguing. Yeah.” Distracting himself from Sienna's legs, he focused his gaze on her face. He sighed, crossing his arms over his chest. “So... Exactly what do I do?”
“You move things.” She deadpanned. He stared. Then frowned, throwing his arms to the side.
“... Well, talk about anticlimatic. That's all?!” She chuckled at his outrage.
“Well... There's more to that, of course. Jason, do you know how motion normally works?” He calmed down enough to look to the side, suddenly embarrassed. She sighed. “Do try and review your physics. It's going to be useful. In few words, a body moves only when another body exercises a certain amount of force on it. The greater the force, the greater the movement. Also, the body which gets pushed pushes back with a force which is equal in magnitude and directly opposite in direction. Follow me, so far?” He nodded. “Good. Now, your Skill does exactly that. With the difference that when you touch something, the amount of movement you generate doesn't follow normal physics.”
“... I'm a Black Hole?” She nodded. Jason was a skill user whose powers didn't follow the normal laws of physics. Just like those mysterious areas of outer space.
“Remember when you punched the dummy? While your body received back the same amount of force, the mannequin acted as it had been punched by... Well, I'd say one hundred Jasons at the same time in the same spot.” Sienna continued, observing how Jason's eyes widened with each word. Then, he suddenly grinned, putting a hand to his chin.
“... Cool.” He commented. “What about the flames?”
“Well, your malformation doesn't let you control when you use your powers, on what and which level. You told me that whenever you take off your S-Guards, you feel a warm tingle all around your hands, right? That's the oxygen in the air warming up just by you brushing it. And when you hit something, the magnitude it's greater, to the point of burning it up.” His grin became even wider, if possible. “And finally, dt seems that the greater the force you put behind the movement, the smaller the lever on which you affects things and the stronger the effect. The dummy burned not because of the oxygen, but because you moved its single particles. Although, just on the surface.”
“So, if I hit someone, I would move away the first layer of skin or something? Sweet!” She smiled, waiting for him to ask it. If his sudden stunned face was any indication, that was the moment. “Wait a minute. Now that I think about it, if I burn the air around me by moving, how come I don't get burned myself?”
“You have something in common with Thomas. Your skin is peculiar.” She presented to him the reader, showing a looped sequence of a naked man walking through a fire. “It's tuned to resist higher temperatures than normal skin.”
“Oh. But I guess it doesn't apply to body hair, huh?” Jason raised his right arm, observing how the right side was, once again, completely shaved. “Oh, well. I can live with that.” She handed her back the reader, not really interested in the description and all the numbers. “Is that all?”
“Well... It should. There's that other thing.” Sienna smiled mischievously. Jason regarded her with a confused stare and then he stood up, surprised, the chair clattering to the ground. She winked at him. “Don't worry, it will be our little secret.”
“You know, on one hand, this makes even more... Intriguing.” Then, he narrowed his crimson eyes, glaring daggers at the older woman who just stared back unfazed. “On the other, you're the first person to figure it out, and the only one other than me that knows about it at all. It'd better stay that way.”
“Awww, stop trying to act all scary, Jason.” She chuckled at his try at being threatening. Standing up, she walked by him and brushed a soft hand against his set jaw. “You're cuter when you're cocky. Or genre savyy.” Jason followed her with his eyes as she left. Once she was gone, he groaned.
“Okay. He told me that I'd get in trouble when puberty hit, but this is ridiculous.”
And that's not the strangest thing that I've seen happen with puberty.