2046-02-11 Smoke Before Fire

From X-Factor

Smoke Before Fire
Date Posted 2016/02/11
Location Mercer Apartments
Participants Tiffany, Sumit
Summary Sumit & Tiff briefly team up to form a superhero duo.
Prompt [Random Scene] Sumit & Tiffany @ Mercer Apartments Room Parent. Prompt: It caught on fire!. Sumit sets.
Though technically not a part of NYU, most of Mercer Apartment's residents are students who take advantage of the building's close proximity to campus. A deal with campus officials has made possible the extension of the Atrium, a 20th story walkway that extends over Mercer Avenue to connect the apartments to the towering sleekness of NYU's new Talhurst Hall. The Atrium is lined with shops that cater to the college crowd, from pubs to boutiques to cheap fast food. Near the center, a small, glassed-in lounge filled with plants and easily-cleaned couches looks out over NYU's campus, and on the opposite side, a balcony offers constant access to airtaxis. The apartments themselves are far less grand. They're largely studios, with the occasional two or three bedrooms thrown in, cheaply decorated with cabinets that can easily be torn out and replaced and standard, boring bathroom fixtures. The building is large, making it easy to get lost in the crowd of its residents. It generally has a don't-ask-don't-tell policy regarding mutations, but rumors fly fast and furious about particular apartments that are occupied by mutants. Any unusual sights, sounds, or smells tend to be chalked up to mutant residents.

It is a winter day. The weather is cold and flurrying.

It's cold outside, so Sumit is inside, hiding from the snow you might say. Having been out on a hunt for a hard to get spice he's made it as far as Greenwich before the cold has forced him inside. Ambling around the atrium he eyes the various shops on offer although it's clear to anyone paying attention that he's not really browsing as a dedicated shopper might. As he reaches the end closest to the student digs he stops, eyes the outside then starts to turn as if he's going to amble back again before he stops. A quick sniff of the air an a concerned expression crosses his brows a moment before the building's fire alarm blares.

Tiffany's psionic avatar is the picture image of glowing, youthful health. Without a hair out of place, an effortless tan, and a slightly more generous bustline than is a reality, the young woman appears unaffected by the cold. Her modest a-line frock is inappropriate for the frigid weather, but she doesn't appear to have a coat.

Abusing her god-given abilities, she'd been out checking up on a guy who hadn't called her back and just so happened to be in the area. She's nearly indistinguishable from any other physical presence but for the virtue of simply having appeared out of thin air. Recognizing Sumit, she blinks into existence just beside him. "Fire," she observes. Her telepathic voice appears no different than as if she were speaking.

Sumit is fortunately used to people like Ciel and Moody appearing out of thin air, so Tiffany's arrival doesn't leave him reaching for his stunner, but he does get awfully tense for a moment until he recognises her voice. "Yes," he replies looking around as people start to leave, some more calm and orderly than others. "Do you know where? Smoke doesn't really bother me, so I can help with evacuations until the fire brigade arrive." Well, as long as he's careful.

A woman rushing past with her infant passes right through Tiffany’s likeness and continues on out of the shop. “I’ll find out,” Tiffany answers mildly, not even appearing to glitch or waver at the intrusion. A line of concern creases her brow before blinking out of sight again.

Unseen, Tiffany’s disembodied mind seeks out of the cause of the chaos. Moving at roughly double human speed, she makes her way up-stream by piggy-backing on the senses of those fleeing the fire.

Perhaps Tiffany isn't phased by the person passing through her, but Sumit is, briefly. "Not a teleporter then," he mutters to himself before he starts to call helping things to those exiting, things like, "stay calm," and "I'm sure it's just a false alarm." Not moving from the spot so Tiffany can find him again he points a more panicked man towards the exit, and generally marshalls as required.

As Tiffany makes her way up the building the source of the fire becomes apparent by the reactions of those in at the end of a corridor two stories up. No one seems to have the searing terror of being trapped by the flames themselves, but the ever growing wall of smoke is trapping some students in their rooms, and they're starting to lose their cool.

Tiffany may have gone up the stairs the long way, but she intuits her way back to Sumit by dropping straight back down. The process is inexact, and she ends up a few aisles over. “I’ve lost you,” she calls out in vain, being out of range. Her hair doesn’t move as looks this way and that, trotting blindly around one of the store’s endcaps and then, another until she finds the one she’d left him in. The psionic mutant plants her feet at shoulder width apart. “Second floor. There’s a ton of smoke. I couldn’t see well,” she gives him a nod of determination, “We doin’ this?” One of her perfectly groomed eyebrows arches.

"Anyone trapped?" Sumit asks Tiffany when she returns, then, spotting one of the shop employees who's taken time to secure their petty cash he says to them, "when the fire brigade gets here, tell them second floor alright mate?" Then, turning back to Tiffany he gives her his full attention and nods back, "You got any limitations I need to know about?" Although, to be fair to him, he asks that as he starts to move for the slowly emptying stairs. "I'm fine with smoke, but the fire itself won't do anything nice to me at all, so we need to keep a close eye out for any actual flames."

"I think I saw some douche-bros trapped by the smoke, I was in a rush-" Tiffany admits, turning to lead the way. Not weighed down by the limits of a physical body, she moves fast. Although she's typically heavy-footed in heels, her steps in this state don't appear to make any sound at all. "I can be anywhere there's a human mind. I can tell you where you're needed," she answers him earnestly with another nod, cutting through the normal bullshit she usually throws at people, "But I'm not really here." She makes pointed eye-contact, trying her best to get across to him that *he's* the only one really putting himself in danger.

"Let’s go get them out then," Sumit replies as he makes it out of the stairwell onto the floor in question, "lead on." He can really smell the smoke now, and his eyes are starting to water slightly, but he seems to be breathing just fine. "They tend to be fairly tolerant of mutants here," he notes cautiously, "but be careful not to make too big a show of it if it can be avoided. Makes things less complicated later." Her warning about her non-presence is received with a nod and he notes, "if things go terribly, go get Ciel or Moody, they have the best chance of emergency evac." Not that he plans on letting it come to that mind, but it never hurts to plan.

"I'm from Xavier's," Tiffany counters Sumit's warning dryly, "Assimilation is the name of the game." She bats at the smoke in front of them with a dainty hand to no avail, "Don't worry, I won't *abandon* you here. ...It was-" She shifts her eyes as her own vision is impaired along with his and as she walks, she trains a hand out behind her as if she could keep hold of him if she wanted to, "-left. This way!" She briefly flicks out of existence as she gets out of range, but reappears moments later in front of a row of doors, "Over here!"

"I'll take your word on that," Sumit replies with a nod, then, as she blinks out of existence he pauses in case it means something has gone wrong. With his ears peeled he hears her call and heads down the corridor towards it. The smoke is thick enough now that he can't see much more than a arm's length in front of him, so he keeps his left hand on the wall and sweeps the corridor in front of him with each foot as he moves them forwards so he doesn't trip over anything on the ground. Reaching the first door he knocks and receives a worried sounding, "Are you the firemen?" To save time and effort he lies, "Yes, we need to get you out of here. Can you wet a towel or something and put it over your nose and mouth, then open your door and come out to me." There's slight pause, but then the lad does as instructed and is quickly directed back towards the stairwell and out to safety. "Are they all still conscious?" he calls as he moves down the wall again, hunting for the next door.

Tiffany blinks out of existence once again as she invisibly probes the next room. Inside, she opens her eyes to see what the young coed who lives there sees: a dingy, tiled wall and a closed bathroom door. Wedged behind the bathroom vanity and the tub, Tiffany briefly appears standing just off to the side of a blonde student. Still in her late teens, she rocks herself and tries desperately to control her ragged breathing.

"Yes, but-" Tiffany answers Sumit, suddenly appearing just behind him a moment later. She places a hand on his shoulder, which can't be felt, "-you should go in. Something." She gives a shake of her head, "I think she's too scared. ...She's in the bathroom."

<FS3> Sumit rolls Melee: Success. (2 3 4 5 2 5 4 2 8)

Some just appearing in his line of sight might not bother Sumit to much, but he's still a little startled as he hears Tiffany's voice unexpectedly from behind. "No flames in there?" he checks, although he guesses not given she's told him to go in. Once he reaches the door he knocks loudly, then calls, "Are you alright? I'm coming in, we'll get you out of here," before he puts his shoulder to the door. It takes a few hits, but in the end it budges and he's inside. The room quickly fills with smoke, but not before he can glance the layout and make his way to the bathroom door. "It's alright," he calls again, "You're going to be safe," Putting his shoulder to this door too he's in in a moment and grabbing a flannel to wet.

As the shoddy door flings open under Sumit's strength, the girl within lets out a little whimper. Perhaps too sheltered to deal with this amount of stress, or suffering from some other psychological hang-up over the approaching flames, she runs to her savior and wraps her arms around his neck.

The sound of heavy movement comes from the hallway outside of the small flat. "Fire department, is everyone alright?" A booming voice soon asks.

Tiffany moves out of the girl's line of sight, nodding in affirmation to Sumit before going stealth as to not raise more questions. No mutants, here. No siree.

The fireman lead them out but it appears Sumit is definitely /someone's/ hero, now.

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