Mikhail and telepaths. TALK TO ME ABOUT THIS. He's very reactive, yet there are ways in which his mutation manipulates other people that are not dissimilar from telepathy. Is he aware of that?
Mikhail's telepathy aversion comes from the fact that a telepath is the person who took him and controlled him, and thinking about this carefully, it seems to me that early on, Eva must have done some broad and sloppy complete rewriting of Mikhail's own desires. She's not a very good telepath and never had a teacher, which means that getting him to do what she wanted - or not do what she didn't want - was clumsy and heavy handed and probably really terrifying.
Later on, she stepped out of that role both because Vitaly came on board and because she no longer trusted her ability to consistently overpower Mikhail's unless she was always, constantly on watch.
Mikhail is terrified of telepathy because that, plus nullifiers, are basically the only mutations he can think of that sort of checkmate his own. Telepathy means loss of control and loss of self and loss of autonomy.
The similarity is not lost on ME. There is definitely an element of becoming the thing you fear in Mikhail's journey. The combination of terror and sudden freedom and lots of power is a very heady thing, and Mikhail is young and has been repressed for much of his life.
As for Mikhail, I think he'd argue harder. He's aware that aspects are the same - he wrote about it some in his last journal - but he's pretty sure he can't make someone do something they absolutely don't want to do. Although now that I type that, I think he goes back and forth depending on what he wants. For example, he wants Lexie to want to kiss him, and so he angsts about it. But he doesn't care whether Luka wants to help him or not, so no angst.
But anyway, tipping someone toward something they're kinda inclined toward anyway isn't nearly as evil as completely rewriting their desires, or shutting down something they're trying or thinking. He doesn't create things, he just makes them more likely. Totally different.
Telepaths are definitely the worst.