It was early evening. The sun, whilst not quite set, had dipped behind the trees just as the storm clouds began to roll in and darken. Rain was not so much a looming threat, as a certainty of the journey. Thick bottomed boots crunched on the loose pebbles on the sidewalk as Quentin made his way through the city. Overhead the halo of the streetlights began to glow as the mist of failing moisture began to fall. He paid no mind to it, however. A small blue glow appearing over his head, raindrops collecting on it, before cascading down to the ground.
It was the little details that most people missed. The small things that showed what kind of mutant Quentin really was. It could be seen in the collection of the rain drops. They didn’t merely fall at his feet. Instead they traveled down in organized rivulets rolling off the sidewalk and into the storm drains that lined the streets. Quietly doing his part to keep the sidewalk dry for whatever little time he could by them.
His goal loomed in the distance, the glowing light of a Subway restaurant of all things. Not normally taken with fast food, but he found himself in the mood to avoid people as much as possible this night. Though as he went, he saw something shimmering in the distance. He quirked an eyebrow at the mysterious object on the sidewalk and held his hand up to it. Blue waves of telekinetic energy lifting and moving the object towards him. He had assumed it was a quarter, and was mildly disappointed to find that it was merely a nickel. Shrugging he put the object in his pocket and headed towards the fast food establishment. It was there that he saw him. A man, clearly homeless, hunched on the sidewalk beneath the overhang to the Subway. He was shivering in the fresh rain and looked up to Quentin as he approached. In his hand he gripped some tattered friendship bracelets in a variety of rainbow colors.
“Hey Mr, buy one for a dollar?” the man said holding the bracelets out to him.
Quentin offered the man a smile and rummaged through his pockets. He found the nickel and offered it to the man “Sorry, this is all the cash I have on me, but you can have it. Tell you what, how about I bring you something from inside?”
The man’s eyes lighted at the offer of food, though it didn’t stop him from taking the nickel as well and adding it to a small cup of change and crumpled notes. “Gee thanks, Mr that be great!” he said smelling of all manner of liquor. Quentin was about to walk past the man when greasy fingers gripped his wrist. “Here” the man said tying one of the bracelets to Quentin “You earned it, bless you!”
Quentin couldn’t help but have a slight smile on his face as he entered the fast food joint. He’d be sure to pick the man up a nice sandwich for his kindness. It was these little moments that renewed his faith in humanity a bit. He was waiting in line when he heard the sound of peeling tires. A man yelling from a truck, something about ‘Mutie Scum’. He thought nothing much of it until the explosion., He had no way of knowing what it was, or even exactly where it came from. His powers instinctively tossing a telekinetic shield around himself as the world around him turned to fire and tinder for a moment. Glass and shrapnel cascading into the streets around him. And then? It was all cinders and ash. He wished that this sort of thing could be a surprise. That it made him feel more than he did. But he’d seen the worst of humanity too many times to really be struck by it.
Boots crunched over broken glass, and chipped tilework as he walked through what was once the wall of the Subway. He looked down with a pang of sadness and anger at the remnants of the homeless man. He was looked down on by so many, but in his way he had shown Quentin some of the simple best that humanity could offer in day to day moments. And now he was flayed on the ground, a bloody pin cushion of glass and brick. On the ground, coated in flecks of blood and ash, shimmered a nickel. Quentin picked it up, put it in his pocket, and moved on to do what had to be done.