Title: Holiday quiet on these streets
Fandom: X-men crossover with Avatar: the last Airbender (yes the cartoon. hush.)
Rating: pg: 13 (for swearing and a brief mention of something unpleasant.)
Word count: 1,612
Author's note: This was set mostly in the x-men universe but I tried to incorporate A:TLA as much as I could. Also, (The Cave by Mumford and Son's was kinda perfect for this fic, so there's that.)
Summary: He never asks.
He doesn't know why he took her in. He wouldn't be able to tell you if you gave him charts and graphs to make sense of it all. Hell, he doesn't know why she agreed to travel with him, her being more than capable of taking care of herself.
Part of it was that he didn't ask.
The other part was that she didn't either.
When he first mistakes her for a telepath, she throws a boulder at his head.
"Telepaths don't know how to see properly," she had didn't say how rich that was coming from a blind girl; instead he chewed on his cigar. She blew a dark strand of hair out her eyes and for a brief moment he saw white, "all they are, are show-offs," a bitter note rang in the statement.
He doesn't tell her that she's right; instead he labels her as 'girl who can move earth'.
She doesn't throw anymore boulders at his head, at least not any huge ones.
They move through Asia; him collecting information (from various sources) on his past, her just traveling along with no destination in mind.
When he calls Professor Xavier and Jean, he tells them that he picked up a new traveling companion. Jean teases, says that this is starting to be a thing with him. Picking up young mutants and helping them get to where they need to be, helping them get stronger and cable of fending for themselves. He grumbles at her, and says it just happens around him, call it his charming personality.
He doesn't tell them the exact circumstances that dropped this young girl into his care. Letting them just assume that he had rescued her from something unpleasant.
They don't really need to know that it was her that had rescued him from a group who had known his weaknesses and ambushed him as he was leaving a bar. That it was her that had opened the earth under them and thrown them away like paper. That this little Asian girl, no more than fifteen, had done what would have taken five men to do.
She still gloats enough for the both of them anyway.
She has this thing about the smoking. She throws up a wall of stone every time he begins to smoke his cigars. Tells him he should just walk outside and smoke, because some people around here like air and wants it to be as fresh as possible. And that some people should think of that before they go polluting said air and those things can kill people you know? You know, people who don't have regenerative healing like someone.
He finds himself walking at lot more.
He doesn't at all dwell on the fact that someone as earth bound as this girl could care about the air, or how sometimes, when they're staying in a remote spot on a mountain somewhere, she stands on the edge and just listens to wind.
She uses an obscure style of martial art, similar to Hung Ga, when she controls the earth, toes curling into the dirt as the vibrations run through her, letting her see where she is going. When he commented on it, she said the motions of it helps her concentrate, that it does what her eyes have never been able to. It helps her become part of the earth instead of just a mindless zombie on top.
"Who would teach a blind mutant how to control earth?" he had asked one day, as she went through her motions, throwing up a wall of rock to make a crude armor around her.
She let the rocks fall, stepping over them before raising herself up to higher ground, so he has to look up to hear her. "Some old friends of mine."
He just mutters under his breath as she disappears under the earth, and heads towards the sorry excuse of a shack that they were staying in, pulling out a cigar as he went.
He never asks her why she is on her own, or where her parents are, or if she even has parents. He never asks her to talk about the friends she sometimes mentions, when she give him brief flashes of some past exciting adventures.
He also never tells her that grief has as much as a physical scent to him, as the vibrations of the earth are a form of sight for her.
She has weaknesses of course, though over shadowed by her strength. She can't see air born attacks coming at her that don't originate on the earth. And although her range is great for a blind person, she is still unprotected in many areas, and for obvious reasons she is reliant on her feet, creating a weak point.
But even so, he doesn't really expect her to be surprised by anything he throws at her. He can defeat her, sure, but it takes more energy than he cares to admit. Sometimes, though, when he touches her, whether for long moments when he shows her a move or even to land a blow, for a brief moment she'll flinch.
He doesn't like the conclusion he comes to, and he tries not to bring it up, but he's angry. She notices, obviously reading his body language. When she demands to know what crawled up his ass and died, he stumbles through an explanation, unsure of how to word it. But she figures out what he is trying to say fairly easily and shuts him up by throwing a rock at him.
He sits on the bed, not saying anything and she just sort of glares a little off to his right. "You know," she starts, "you can always just ask, instead of just making stupid assumptions." She makes a frustrated noise and waits.
So he asks.
And she answers in a monotone, like she had been rehearsing this speech, that it's not just earth that she can bend to her will, but metal as well. She said that to her, he's basically a walking boulder and that no matter where he is around her; she can 'see' him, more so than anyone else.
She tells him that if she tries hard enough, she could probably control him. He lets that sink in a moment, and looks at her, really looks at this fifteen year old girl that can control his motions, and he feels momentary panic set in and sees her flinch again, probably feeling his heart speed up.
He clenches his jaw and takes a long breath through his nose and tells his mind to shut the fuck up and get over it.
"Well, at least your better on the eyes than Magneto. "
"Who?" She may sound confused, but even she can't hide her relief.
They pass through small towns all along the way and he starts hearing whispers that a daughter of a very powerful family has gone missing. Sitting at the bar, he can't help but hear the details. The story goes, the daughter was kidnapped and taken away from her parents and her parents are simply distraught over her missing. You see, the locals explained, the young girl, who is no more than fifteen, is blind. Oh yes, blind as a bat, has been since birth. That's why the parents kept her secret, they didn't want her hurt, they wanted to keep her safe, and they want her back so much they are willing to do anything. Some say they are even offering money for their sweet little angel back, with long black hair and white eyes.
He casts a sidelong look at the group at the end of the bar and finishes his drink, leaving money on the bar as he leaves, not looking back.
When he gets back to the motel, he sees her sitting on the floor, fresh from a shower if her wet hair is any indication, getting ready for the night. He just stops and looks at her, long enough for her to slowly turn her unseeing gaze upward.
He doesn't say anything about what he heard at the bar and she doesn't make any smart remarks as he extends one claw and gently holds her hair together in a ponytail. Just leans her head down, letting her bangs cover her face as he makes a swift cut.
She looks more like a boy than before, hair short and uneven mess, rounding out her face, losing the remaining piece of delicacy it had to it.
They leave the next morning, as quiet as they arrived.
He never asks if she wants to come back with him and she never tells him. He just books two plane tickets and doesn't act surprised when she follows him into the airport.
She fidgets the entire time and mutters something about it being better than the bison, at least.
He also doesn't ask about that, because something's are better off unknown.
"Earth is always earth," she had told him once, when they had first started traveling together. "No matter where you are, you will never be without it. Just like air and water and even fire. As long as earth is under my feet, I have nothing to worry about," and she looked ahead of her without being able to see the sky or horizon, her stance radiating confidence.
He never questions her.