Psquatter Spotter

Characters: Jean Grey Sofia Strange
Rated: PG-13
Summary: The Sorcerer Supreme makes a house call to exorcise a weirdly corporeal ghost.
OOC Date: December 02, 2017
IC Date: December 02, 2017
Where: New York City


Still quivering even as echoing violence fades, Reuben Blackmoore screams when gloved fingers barely land upon his shoulders— only to take a sharp fall into silence as a warm blanket coils around his addled psyche. Framed by red hair, their kneeling owner casts down a smile that - while incapable of wiping away the trauma of being caught in the middle of a bank robbery turned superhuman brawl - gives him something to think about beyond cowled boys waving guns in his face.

By the time he remembers to mumble words of thanks, she's gone— moved on to ease a younger man out of the fetal position with a touch to the brow.


Reuben Blackmoore doesn't remember when exactly the phone number labeled 'STRANGE' wound up in his wallet, nor why it was the first thing to cross his mind after several minutes of blank-faced staring at a damp shower. What he does know is that his apartment is rather clearly haunted - before the shower, it was vanishing leftovers; before the leftovers, flickering lights - and Angie is light on experts for fixing it. 'STRANGE' is an accurate enough description of the situation; if it doesn't pan out, his next call will be to a realtor.

When - if - someone picks up, they'll be greeted with, "I don't who this is or what you do, but I've got myself one heck of a strange situation brewing over here, and— well, someone gave me this number, and…" in a whispered, muffled rush.


Sofia had a phone, yes. She didn't normally get calls like the one she received this evening on it though. Occasionally, but not normally. Most of the time, she pointed the caller to someone who tended to deal with such things as 'hauntings' more often than she did because she got tired of, more often than not, dealing with someone's paranoia. Recent happenings, however, had her paying closer attention.

When she was done with the call, getting a brief summary and an address, she had left Wayne Manor. Driving, it would have taken her almost an hour and a half to get there. Flight, however… That was a different story and she managed to get within forty-five minutes.

Straightening her attire, the silver blouse over dark blue jeans and a black sweater over the blouse, she certainly didn't look like she could do much. Looks can be deceiving though.

Her silver heels click along the sidewalk as she slowly makes her way up the walk, letting her senses cast out for anything supernatural. A knock on the door and she opens her mind to what lay within while she waits for someone to answer.


Flickering lights. Disappearing goods. Items turning up in strange places, lost time; none of what Reuben describes is actively malicious, so much as unsettling and inexplicable.

By the island's standards, Reuben is fortunate enough to live in a fairly decent building with a doorman— who would prove no barrier at all, having already been told to expect 'some strange woman' within the hour. It's clean, lies in a safe area, and - when observed through the lens of Sofia's extranormal senses - badly distorted by heat shimmers concentrated on the fifth floor— Reuben's floor. So long as her perception remains expanded, she'd feel the temperature spike a few degrees higher when crossing building's threshold, and higher still as she approaches the proper floor.

And on the fifth floor, she'd be greeted by astral fire along the walls and ceiling, sparse but reapidly intensifying in density and magnitude alike as she approaches the door, brilliant yet existing in neutral harmony with the world. The door itself is nothing but fire extending well beyond its physical frame, cloaking whatever lies beyond in a thick haze of reddish orange shot through with smoke. Pressing through to get a firm bead on its occupants is an option, but it's likely to be an uncomfortable one; whatever it is doesn't want to be seen and seems to have quite a lot of power to put behind its whims.

On the other hand, there's nothing stopping Sofia from knocking. Reuben takes nearly a minute to pull the door open, at which point he nervously sticks his head out of a crack, peers beyond Sofia, then at Sofia, then beyond her— then, finally, back to her as he steps back and slowly opens the rest of the way up.

"Good evening," the middle-aged hauntee murmurs while vaguely gesturing into a meticulously kept apartment, "and thank you— thank you so much for agreeing to see me— Miss? Strange; come right in, please."

As he steps aside and speaks, Sofia might feel something not unlike gauze being wound around her perceptions in the hopes of clouding them just so.


The heat and flames have Sofia narrowing her eyes. They aren't magical in nature, per se, but they're far from mundane as well. Astral. A warning. She can feel the heat of it trying to push in on her from that plane and very stubbornly pushes back.

When the door opens, Sofia gives a warm, friendly and encouraging smile to the man. "Good evening, Mister Blackmoore. I'm glad you called me." There's such confidence in her tone as she steps into the apartment. Almost immediately she's aware of her the 'fog' trying to force itself on her and for a moment it seems like it may work only for her to 'shake it off' a moment later.

Her mind and her magic reaches out, sensing and scanning for the source. "I'm going to wonder around the apartment a bit if that's okay with you, sir. It might be best for you and anyone else to wait outside." She doesn't look like she needs to steal anything from him to survive, certainly.

"Everything will be fine, I promise. By the time you come back, whatever the problem is will be gone." She'll make sure of that, at the very least.

She begins drawing power to her as she slowly makes her way through the apartment to find the heart of the 'heat'. As she walks, the Wands of Watoomb are pulled from its hiding spot, helping her focus the energy she's gathering and enhancing it.


"Just— "

A nervous chuckle.

"Just me here," he finishes a bit quieter while nodding and backpedaling outside. "Just, please, be careful, my collection— seems like it's the only thing I can count on, these days…"

Looking down, he leaves it at that while pulling the door almost shut and leaving Sofia to her work.

Straight on from the door is a low wall separating the foyer/living room and a left-leading hallway from the kitchen. Fire carpets floors, walls, and ceilings alike, shaping itself around a few objects - framed pictures in the living room and a shelf of pepper shakers in the kitchen. At first glance, it has no source; it simply is, filling rent-controlled space with an echo of primordial fire and boundless life. As the Wand is drawn, however, the flames briefly ripple before curving at the whim of a sorcerous breeze. Burning tips lead down the hallway, only to stop midway to surround a bathroom door.

At no point during this process do the attempts to manipulate Sofia's mind cease, at least as long as she seeks to rely on simply resisting them: the tactics just shift. Trying to wholesale block her senses gives way to the unseen invader seeking out something - anything - in her psyche to push to the forefront in the hopes of keeping the Sorceror distracted; as she closes in on the bathroom, this becomes phantom sounds emanating from the bedroom just a few feet further down the hall.


Once the man is gone, Sofia spends a few more moments walking around. The sounds from the bedroom have her going in completely the opposite direction but it's a purposeful change. It's not fear but a covering of her bases. "Come out, come out, wherever you are," is called through the house, almost singsong like. "I know you're in here."

She doesn't necessarily know who or what it is, but she knows it's strong. She knows it's not magical and not a haunting. That leaves, pretty much, dimensional. "You don't belong in here…"

Finally, she turns back towards the bedroom, pausing in the hall long enough to murmur a few words and with some quick hand gestures, pushes magic outwards to ward the apartment and in doing so, prevent leaving until she withdraws the shields. Of course, this means she's trapped herself in there with a very powerful being that clearly doesn't want to be seen.

The door to the bedroom is pushed open. "Who are you?," is asked as her mind is pushed on. This time, however, she pushes back.


The bathroom door sloooowly parts as Sofia opens the bedroom. There, she finds a queen bed, a door leading to a second bathroom, and a desk with a laptop pushed off to a corner to make more room for art supplies and intricately detailed pewter figurines in various stages of painting. Practiced footfalls sneak into the living room and Sofia receives a lingering glimpse of a burning raptor meeting her mind's eye when she pushes against the manipulations of a foreign mind. The bedroom seems silent, now, and nothing - not a figurine, not the books upon the bedside table, nor the suit and tie hanging from the bathroom door - looks obviously out of place. Meanwhile, from the living room:

A woman's sharply hissed, "Fuck," emanates as something or someone tries to open Reuben's window and fails.


The bedroom is clear and Sofia gives a sigh that is amused and exasperated both. "Mind games," is muttered in distaste.

The image of the flaming raptor has Sofia narrowing her eyes and reaching out with her mind to speak. Let's try again… Who are you?

As she asks, she steps from the bedroom, closing the door behind her and making her way to the bathroom. She has the door partially open when that hiss catches her attention. You won't be able to get out. I don't intend you any harm. If I did, I would have done it already. Why are you here?

The bathroom is forgone to head towards the living room. The psychic shielding she's doing makes her reactions a little slow than she'd like and takes more of her focus than she'd care to admit. What or who ever this is, it's much older than she is and stronger mentally too.


"Shit— "

Rather than an answer, Sofia receives a frantic and briefly renewed attempt at altering her perceptions.

"— shit, shit, shit, shi— " accompanies a couple of thuds against the living room window frame, courtesy of—

— a woman in an old, green hoodie who only stops struggling to push the window open to twist her upper body towards the approaching Sorcerer, causing a few bright red locks to slip free of the hood. Distressed jeans and ancient sneakers round out her ensemble. Distressed jeans, ancient sneakers; and blazing wings and a raptor's head astrally framing her form. Turning to fully face the silver-haired woman, she lets the heels of her palms rest against the windowsill and slowly exhales.

"I'm— " Her eyes flick upwards for a split-second. "— living here," she decides to conclude. Since they're looking right at one another now, she gives up on trying to play with Sofia's senses in favor of seeking a way around - or through - the Sorcerer's shielding so she can skim her thoughts for a better sense of who she's dealing with. "Why are you here?"


Sofia looks at the redhead, seeing more than most would, and arching a brow. She can't help but wonder if the woman's aware of it or not.

Cerulean blue eyes meet that of the redhead and the Sorceress finds herself sympathizing with the woman. She knows what it is to be homeless. To be tempted to yours your abilities for food and shelter. "I'm here because you're scaring the man that lives here bad enough he felt he needed to bring someone in to deal with it."

Her stance relaxes and she pauses, wetting her lips. "You can't live here. Your messing with his mind, aren't you? That's not right. It runs the risk of driving him mad." She could try to force the woman out, of course. There's plenty of inter dimensional beings she could call on for assistance if need be. But something stays her hand.

"I am going to ask you a question and make you an offer. Under no circumstances if my offer dependent upon your answer, do you understand? At to show the truth of my words, I will give you the access you need to ensure this. Dig no deeper than that, however. Agreed?"

She lets the first few layers of her thoughts open to the woman and the being that inhabits her. Sofia is Sorcerer Supreme, guardian of Earth against magical, dimensional and inter dimensional threats. She lives with Bruce Wayne and is the occasional partner of Batman when her special talents are needed. And there's no sense of deception in her words but her sympathy and understanding is there. Along with a sense of wariness and respect.


"I wasn't paying attention," the stranger mutters while folding her arms and flicking green eyes away from Sofia. "I slipped up— I was going for 'just a little bit gaslit' more than 'mad', but I missed him coming home, didn't get to clean up, and— well, here we are, now." Leaning back to sit on the edge of the sill, her eyes just about shut as she listens and reads—

— and scrunches her features— vigilante wizarding and Batman??

After a few silent seconds, her head lifts, her gaze snaps to Sofia, and she makes a little gesture with her hand while murmuring, "Fair enough; hit me."


"Alright. Question first. Are you aware of the being protecting you?" Because that makes a large difference. Not in what she offers next but in terms of how to help the woman.

A few heartbeats and, then, the offer. "You can stay in my home in Manhattan. No charge. No need to hide or sneak. I'm not there often, honestly." And There's certain area that would have to be 'hidden' but…

She puts away the Wand from earlier and leans back against the couch, crossing her arms over her chest and her ankles. "You can stay there for as long as need be."


The stranger slowly sucks in a breath and drops her eyes at the question. Her jaw visibly clenches as well, but once Sofia adds the offer into the mix, her features twist with brow-knitting, lip-twisting bemusement.

She doesn't quite look at Sofia, but she certainly peers at the space immediately around the Sorceress as if it is nuts.

After a couple beats of silence, she finally murmurs, "… yes," as her arms tighten. "And why? You don't even know me; I could be a super-clever and/or sad demon-avatar-faerie thing trying to score access to the Sorceress Supreme's -" now her eyes manage to find Sofia, albeit via a sideways gaze "it's twenty-seventeen, just saying - place."

Suspicion drips as she now studies the Sorceress through narrowed eyes.


"Because I can. Because it'll be safe. Because I've been homeless and alone and relying on my powers to survive. It's not a good way to live. Then I made a friend," Her smile turns affectionate for a moment. "He made an offer similar to what I make now."

A chuckle comes from Sofia. "You aren't any of the above. I'd see it if you were. And even if you were, no one gains access unless I allow it. I'm not going to bullshit you and tell you there won't be rooms you can't enter because there will be. But you'd have the majority of it open to you."

Pushing off the couch, her lips twist in a wry smirk. "I didn't choose the title. It comes with the job." She gives the redhead a wink.

"So? What do you say? We can even do it on a trial basis. If you don't like it, you can leave."

Her head tilts. "And it's a safe place." The wards and protections will control damage if she loses control. "It's up to you. Alternatively, I can hand you some money and you can be on your way. Unfortunately, staying here isn't an option anymore."


"That's where the cleverness comes in, duh," the redhead notes before dipping her head to listen. Until the thought of wards crosses Sofia's mind, she seems poised - given the way she periodically glances towards the door and keeps her posture tight - to leave at the earliest available opportunity; once it does, though, her spine straightens a bit and she cants her head.

Still, it isn't until she's taken a few seconds to silently think - and stare - that she finally, quietly acquiesces, "On a trial basis," after pushing a breath out through her nose. "I just— all I really need, anyway, is a place to crash short term, so— fine, a lightly used wizard house is as good as anywhere else, I guess."

Her eyes fall and she remains still for another beat before shaking her head and letting out a brief, quiet chuckle. "If there's still any money on the table, though," she lowly adds, "you probably oughtta take a look at Reuben's bathroom," where a number of sticky notes with the letters 'IOU' followed by household items and varying dollar amounts hang from the edges of his mirror.

"I just hope he'll be alright, he's— had a pretty rough week, all in all."


Sofia chuckles softly. "On a trial basis," is acquiesced with a nod.

"What's wrong?" The redhead's concern for the man is warming and tugs on Sofia's curiosity even as she pulls a wallet from her back pocket and pulls out a few hundred dollar bills, laying them on the nearest table for the man who has unknowingly been housing Jean. Whom is also having a hundred dollar bill held out to her. "You'll need to go grocery shopping. Like I said, I'm not there often so there's not much there, and certainly not enough to last more than a night or two."

Putting the wallet away, she straightens fully. "You'll need to cloak yourself on the way out." Sofia could do it for her, yes, but she isn't entirely certain how the woman would feel about it. Sofi had a lot of pride when she was homeless and didn't like accepting help unless there was no other way.

As she gets ready to depart, a brow is arched. "What size do you wear?"


"Followed him home from a bank robbery," the redhead quietly replies while pushing away from the sill, "after helping break it up." She pauses momentarily upon being met with a Benjamin, studying the bill before ultimately pocketing it.

"I planned on paying him back - eventually - once I figured some things out. Right now is just— complicated," she continues. "And I still don't exist to him, but once I'm not around for a while, his senses'll go back to normal. Which won't actually mean a whole lot to him, but. Still."

Hands nestled in her front pocket, she begins moving towards the front door while relaying sizes, then quickly adds, "but I can find a thrift store, it's fine." Afterwards, she looks up and over towards Sofia.

"Thank you for— let's be real, here— trusting me for no logical reason whatsoever? My name is Jean."


"I'm Sofia. Nice to meet you, Jean." And then there's a chuckle at the clothing issue. "I'm sure you can but, in the interest of being real, that's a stupid move. I have clothes you can have. I hate shopping so it's done for me," Sofia's nose wrinkles her, showing her lack of enthusiasm about such a thing. "And … Like you said, complicated. Needless to say, I have clothes that I'd just end up donating anyhow. Consider it cutting out the middle man." She shrugs.

Following Jean, she grins and reaches for the door, trusting the woman to conceal herself. A heartbeat and the wards are dropped. Another and the door is open. "Mister Blackmoore? You can go back in now. Everything's fine and there won't be any more mishaps." And she has to try not to chuckle at the mere absurdity of calling what was going on 'mishaps'.

Her priority now is to get Jean back to the Sanctum and settled in. She'll need to call Bruce and let him know she's in Manhattan for the night. It's likely best if she and her new friend talk for a bit anyhow.

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