Sunday, November 6, 2022

The Advancement of Mateo Matic: September 3, 2398

Guideliner Jacinto Lerse does not have telekinesis so much as he is telekinesis, or at least a form of it. It is so far unclear what he’s going to do for Mateo’s problem, but he and Intentioner Senona Riggur were confident that this would fix it. He wasn’t even the first person that Senona reached out to. There is evidently this whole subculture of empowered immortals who are busy doing their things across the bulk, similar to the network of choosing ones in salmonverse, but on a far grander scale. They are reportedly from the same universe, having the occasion to work together over the aeons. Based on what Leona told them, they have realized that she has actually been to their brane before, though at a much, much, much later point in its timeline than their respective origins.
Jacinto uses his abilities to carry Cheyenne back to the Olimpia, easily ignoring the protests from Zacarias’ soldiers, until the Coronel gives them new orders anyway. They spend one more night on the base, so she can recuperate without traveling. When they get back to the craft, Leona shakes hands with Zacarias, agreeing to keep the discovery of the Nexus a secret. They’re going to tell the rest of the team, but he doesn’t need to know that. Jacinto tells them that they don’t even have to bother turning the vehicle on. He lifts the entire thing into the air with his mind, opens the ceiling up, and flies them over the ocean, back to Kansas City, as if it were nothing more difficult than blowing a mote of dust away.
Once they arrive at the Lofts, their new friend parks the Olimpia in the basement garage. They take the elevator upstairs, expecting to find Mateo in their apartment, the third floor common area, or maybe Marie’s unit. Cheyenne and Bridgette stay up there while Leona takes Jacinto down to the first floor where Alyssa is operating reception. She is presently on a call, so they have to wait until she’s finished with the client. It sounds very important and promising. “You’re back.”
“We’re back,” Leona echoes.
“Was it a fruitful trip?” Alyssa asks, snickering for some reason.
“We’ll see,” Leona replies. “Do you know where he is?”
She rolls her eyes, but quickly tries to backpedal with an awkward blink when she starts to worry that the man’s wife won’t be super okay with that. “He’s on the roof.”
“He’s never alone,” she assures her.
They get back on the elevator, and head all the way up. Marie is sitting in a folding chair that is holding the door to the outside open. She looks displeased and fatigued, but not angry. “What’s going on?” Leona asks.
“I’ll let him explain in his own words,” Marie answers. She slaps both of her thighs with finality, and stands up. “My shift is over.” She steps into the elevator before the doors close.
Leona leads Jacinto onto the roof where they can see Mateo several meters away. He’s sitting alone in his underwear and one of his vests, a variety bowl of citrus fruit on the table next to him, and he’s covered in juice. Before he notices that they’re even there, he picks up another lemon, and lets it explode all over the place. He glances over his shoulder as they’re giving him a berth. “Oh, hey, you’re back.”
“Looks like you went a little crazy, huh?” Leona asks in a patronizing tone.
“Well, when you can make lemon grenades, how could you not go a little mad?” He spots Jacinto. “Hey, stranger, think fast.” He grabs an orange, and tries to throw it.”
The orange stops in midair, and hangs there. Before the technicolor bulk energy can spread all around, Jacinto uses her power to recede it, and make it disappear. He then telekinetically peels the fruit, brings it up to his mouth, and bites into it. “Too sweet,” he muses.
Mateo is impressed, but not excited, because he hasn’t figured out yet that this is the reason why Jacinto is here. “Cool trick, bro.”
“Do you want to control your new gift, or do you just wanna...stew?”
Mateo grabs a lime, and throws it as high as he can before it too explodes. “I dunno, this is kind of fun.”
Jacinto gives Leona a moderately frustrated look. “I can do nothing without his consent. I’m a diplomat.”
“What exactly can you do?” Leona asks him. “Maybe that will help him agree.”
“I can give people abilities,” Jacinto begins. “And I can restrict them at will. He’ll have a special form of telekinesis called parakinesis. He’ll still have to use his hands, and he’ll only be able to exert as much force as his muscles will allow, but he won’t technically be touching anything. All I need to know is the imminent value, which is—”
“The point at which two objects are close enough to interact, I understand. How would you test that?”
Jacinto holds his palms upward. “With my hands. Stand up,” he requests.
Leona sighs when Mateo just looks at her without doing anything. “At the very least, you’re being rude by remaining seated in the presence of company. Stand up!”
Mateo stands, and looks down at Jacinto’s hands. “I don’t know what happens to the things that I touch, but I’m pretty sure it works on people.”
“Yes, I would also like to know where these objects go, so we’re going to feed two birds with one worm.” He looks between them. “You don’t have that metaphor here?”
“I thought I made it up,” Leona says.
Jacinto shrugs. “Maybe you did.” He faces Mateo. “Come on. You can’t kill me, and I can always come right back here, a second later from your perspective.”
“Okay.” Mateo decides to take a chance. He places his own hands upon Jacinto’s.
“Oh, that’s pretty close,” Jacinto notes as the technicolor energy is spreading over his body. As soon as he disappears, he opens the door from the elevator bay, and comes back to them. “All right. You are sending objects to another universe, and they all appear to be showing up intact. I thought you might want this back, though.” He hands Leona her fusion work, which was one of the first things Mateo transported. It’s good that it’s safe and sound again, out of potentially dangerous hands.
“What happens now?” Mateo asks.
“It’s done.” Jacinto shrugs again. “Pick up another fruit.”
Mateo carefully removes the last grapefruit from the bowl. Nothing happens, it just stays there in his hand. Or rather, it doesn’t. He’s technically not touching anything.
“Would he...theoretically...?”
“Be able to temporarily disable the TK, in case he needs to get rid of something? It could lead to some questionable ethical territory, but you did wish for that, didn’t you? ’Kay, high ten, bruh!” Technicolor energy spreads over him once again after Mateo slaps his hands. “Peter Parker’s uncle and all that! You have heard of Spiderman, ri—?”

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