Morning dawned bright and early, greeted with much grumbling and yawning. It was a good thing that Warren had insisted that everything be packed in the cars last night, so that everything was ready to go or else they never would have made it to the airport on time.
There was much confusion and a bit of chaos as the group piled out of the two vehicles and grabbed their luggage. There was much hugging, and much last minute instructions to 'be safe', 'don't do anything I wouldn't do' etc., and some last minute checking of pockets and documents.
Apparently Warren and Magenta were the only ones in the group, including the adults that drove them to the airport, that had ever flown commercially.
Warren decided that this week was the universe's way of testing his patience. He wondered what his future had in store if he would need this much patience. Maybe, it was the simple yet horrifying possibility that he was stuck with this particular group of morons for the rest of his long-lived life, and he simply needed to get used to it now when their ignorance was bliss?
Yah, that was looking on the bright side right?
"What are you doing?" Warren had to ask as he noticed Zack messing around with a kiosk that he had made a b-line for the second they had entered the airport doors.
"Dude, this game sucks." Zack said as he continued to press letters on the touch screen. "It won't let me get passed choosing a name for my character."
Warren stood there; deciding if it was worth it to point out that the kiosk wasn't a game. Or if he would let the idiot ignorantly continue in his sad twisted world.
"I don't think that's a game." Ethan decided to enlighten the neon teen.
"Sure it is." Zack immediately defended.
"No," Magenta piped in, "I'm that is where you get your tickets."
"Tickets?" Zack asked.
Warren sighed. This was going to be a really long week. "It would be if you checked in online. Get in that line over there, we have to check our bags."
"But we checked them yesterday. You made us all get more socks." Will said.
Warren turned away from the group and took a deep breath. It would really not do for him to burn the airport down.
"Just get in line." Layla said, noticing the tell tale signs that Warren was about to go postal. She stealthily positioned herself closer to him and grabbed his hand. He glanced at her with narrowed eyes, but did not extricate himself from her grip, nor did he increase the temperature of his hand like he had that one time she called him cutie. So she smiled at him and joined him in ignoring the lot of friends behind them in line.
Magenta of course noticed, and raised an eyebrow. The two girls had decided the night previous that it would fall to Layla to keep Warren from killing any of the other boys, and it would fall to Magenta to keep the three stooges from doing something irrevocably and epically stupid. They were supposed to tag team the three stooges, except when the irrevocably and epically stupid thing coincided with murderous reaction on Warren's part, then they would split to their respective roles.
Magenta knew that this was not a situation that required them to split their containment efforts. So she leveled a knowing look at Layla's back, and turned to babysitting the three stooges all the while swearing that Layla owed her one.
Their wait in line resulted in three slaps to the back of Zack's head, an elbow to Will's gut, two death glares from Warren, and some cowering form all of them at one point or another. But they made it to the check in counter without causing a national incident. Which, considering who was involved, really was an accomplishment.
Every second in line, Warren could feel his hair frizzling. It was a good thing that he had worn it tied back today. He would wind up looking like Einstein by the time they made it through security if he hadn't. Was this what it was like to be a parent of four children under the age of five? He suddenly had more respect for all mothers in the world, and he suspected that he would have even more respect for good parents world wide by the end of the week.
"Zack, Will, if you two don't stop that right now I swear I'll shove that thing where you'll never be able to sit again." He heard Magenta snarl.
He was so never having kids.
"Next!" Finally! He came by long life honestly; both of his parents were for all intents and purposes immortal (of course no one on this planet knew that). He had never actually given it much thought. But he wondered now, if standing in line at the airport was preparation for what eternity would feel like.
Layla had recently pointed out to him that though he was really good at reading people he was actually kind of clueless about certain things. He had no idea what she had been talking about. His irritation had leveled out in line, but it spiked a bit when the woman at the counter asked what they needed. There was something off about her.
"We need to check in for the flight to Colorado Springs." He told her. He noted that she almost fell. People that did the same thing for work everyday really should know what type of footwear was appropriate. Perhaps she was naturally clumsy? Definitely off.
"Great!" she smiled, "Just let me have your I.D. and I'll get you all set." The woman was too cheery. Didn't she know that excessive cheer drove airport goers mad? What ever, he rolled his eyes and turned to the group behind him. Magenta handed him their four I.D.s and he waited patiently as Layla fished hers out of her purse.
Being a Pyro, he could feel the slightest temperature differences. So he involuntarily noticed the woman's flutter in body temperature when he handed her the stack of I.D. cards. Maybe she's diabetic? He thought.
He continued to actively ignore Magenta corralling the other three young men behind him as they waited for the lady to input all the information that she needed to in order to check them in and get them their boarding passes. Though the extremely sour look on Layla's face did give him pause. He thought that she found Will's and Zack's antics amusing.
Why did he suddenly feel like he was missing something?
** What Warren missed **
Veronica was having a typical day. People tended to turn into the grumpiest and mean spirited forms of life when the came to the airport. But she supposed she couldn't blame them, she did it to when she had to fly somewhere. There was just something about being treated like a world class criminal and deprived of basic humanity when forced through airport security. Paying to be treated as a criminal cattle tended to make people angry. So she did her best to keep smiling at the frustrated and harried passengers that came to her to check in, trying to remember to treat each person as a person, and not an angry cow.
Moo, she supposed.
She'd seen handsome men, well dressed and clean shaven as well as some fairly unattractive men (she wouldn't be mean even in her musings). She'd seen roguish and scruffy, tall and short, round and lean. The ones that didn't speak much English were usually lookers.
She had seen a lot in her people herding days at the airport, and she really didn't like to think of herself as boy crazy. But she couldn't stop her jaw from dropping at the sight of the young man that was patiently waiting for her to call the next person in line to her counter. He was tall and slim, but you could tell he had muscle. His skin was tan and his dark hair pulled back leaving his exceptionally handsome face free for all the world to see. There was something wild in his dark eyes. It took her a full two minutes to drag her brain back form lala land and refocus on her job.
"Next." Veronica said loudly and as pleasantly as she could. She tried to be pleasant to everyone that crossed her counter, but try as she might, she couldn't stop herself from being overly excited when the young man moved and walked toward her. He moved with a grace and agility that she imagined only Olympic gymnasts moved with, that or really big cats. Her mind settled on the big cat, as there was a hint of danger about him too. She didn't even notice the young woman clinging to his hand or the group of teens following them.
"What can I do for you today?" The words and tone were completely professional, but she had to stop herself from smacking her forehead on the counter when her own brain told her this was the first time she meant that in not very professional terms.
"We need to check in for the flight to Colorado Springs." The young man said. Veronica was glad that the counters were so high, and that no one noticed her knees go week enough that she had to grab the counter to stay upright. That voice was something else.
"Great!" she smiled, "Just let me have your I.D. and I'll get you all set." When he turned she noticed the group behind him for the first time. She also noticed the especially sour look on the petit redhead standing next to him. She didn't let her smile falter as she watched the young man gather the group's I.D.s.
"Here." He said curtly.
"Alrighty then." Veronica said as she took them from him. And once again she couldn't help the thrill that went through her when their fingers brushed. She felt like this could be fate. The fairytale meeting…
And then cloud 9 came crashing to the ground. She blinked several times. She dug out the calculator to confirm. And then checked it again. And a third time to be sure.
Well damn. Now she felt like a pervert.
She didn't say anything else as she typed in the information for the young man and the rest of the teens in the group. When the issue of luggage came up she handed them off to Jim and expertly excused herself.
** End what Warren missed **