Nikolai "Demo" Markov
Ashford Institute for the Gifted
Nik lowered his hand from the button on his wireless earbuds, his head nodding in time with the opening guitar riff. He flashed a small smile as he looked at the course in front of him in the danger room. Basic simulation. Piece of cake.... and right up his alley. He simply had to get from one virtual rooftop to another through a busy market of sorts. Meant to emphasize control, and a fine tuning of his powers. Something Tabitha, the prof running the simulation today, very much supported. Within a moment, Nik shot forward. He sprinted at full speed to the edge of the roof, using the last few steps to turn his entire body backwards. He lifted up a hand, and a small orb of red energy formed in his palm. He jumped off backwards while thrusting his palm downwards. With an almost imperceptible twitching of his fingers, the concussive bomb detonated and launched the teenager somewhat clumsily towards the nearest building.
Nik ducked his shoulder and rolled like a tumbleweed across the rooftop for a couple feet, grunting as he did so. Once he had stopped, he quickly got up to his feet and looked ahead. Just two more rooftops to go. But... of course... Pierce had provided an update before his disappearance. One Tabitha had yet to notice until it was too late, and one Nik wasn't expecting. Bursting out onto the roof through a doorway on his left was a non-descript robot with a large club. Nik's eyes locked on the robot before he looked back at the gap between him and the other roof. It was easily doable. The mutant broke out into a sprint, but was surprised to see the robot from his peripheral catching up. Nik followed the same maneuver on the previous rooftop, spinning slightly and throwing the bomb of energy at the spot he was jumping from. Perhaps out of adrenaline or fear... Nik knew as soon as he left the energy leave his fingertips that this explosion was going to be too much. The explosion was fiery, and not just concussive. It tore through the imaginary robot as it launched Nik backwards a bit. His already singed tank top had it's fringes reduced slightly more as Demo himself fell right onto his back on the next rooftop.
Nikolai Markov grunted in pain. He had gone a lot farther than intended... landing near the far edge of the next rooftop. He could see, as his head dangled over the edge, that he just had to make this last jump. He stumbled to his feet, and saw three more robots burst out onto this rooftop. Easy enough. Nik readied his right hand, energy coursing along his fingertips as he prepared to fire. He let loose a rather large bomb, hurling it towards the center of the cluster of robots. Unfortunately for him... they moved erratically. The two flanking hostiles ran wide, with the middle robot running straight into the bomb and getting shred to pieces by the following explosion. The shockwave caused Nik to stumble back a step as he saw the two robots moving in quickly to attack. They were mere feet away. He barely had time to throw a quick, small bomb in the direction of the enemy flanking his right, detonating it upon impact and tearing it to pieces. This too caused Nik to loose balance slightly, leaving him at the mercy of the last hostile. He watched in shock as electricity began coursing through the robot's club-like weapon. His body seized with electricity, the shock darkening his vision somewhat. The club remained pressed against Nik's left shoulder, causing his muscles to spasm slightly as he let out a slight gurgling sound. The experience was uncomfortable... but wasn't nearly enough to incapacitate. And it didn't hurt necessarily... whatever the Danger Room was doing, it seemed to be restricting his movements more than causing him pain. But even with the restriction, Nikolai clenched his fist and did the only thing he could think to do.
He punched it.
A concussive blast of force knocked the robot's pieces apart once the first made contact with simulated metal. It was hard for Nik to see exactly what it was coming from his fist as he fired it out, but he could have sworn that for a moment he saw the same energy from his rapidly developing bomb generation wrap around his knuckles. Nik nodded with shock at that, just as the simulation itself finally phased out and a certain feline-like professor burst out of the control room to check on him. He was making progress...
...But will it ever be enough.
Nikolai tussled and dried his hair as he sat on a bench in the locker room of the gym in his boxers, staring blankly at the floor in front of him. The past week had been... transformative, for a lack of a better word. Everything seemed to be changing around him. He let himself get caught up in his own thoughts as he began putting on his jeans. There are so many new people here. I have a girlfriend now. My powers were developing significantly since the fight at... gosh, what was the name of that bar? Doesn't matter. My roommate has been acting weirder than usual lately. I have so many damn essays due this week. I could have Una help me figure out what to...
His thoughts seemed to drift into nothingness as his mind circled back to a single word. A name. He noticed the smile that had formed on his lips at just the thought. He shook his head, internally groaning at himself. Ugh, I'm such a dork around her. I feel like I'm going all soft and weak like Na...
The thought made Nik's entire body freeze for a moment. He felt this pit form in the center of his stomach as he could feel the negative thoughts beginning to swarm around his head. They were joined by the realization of all the sudden changes going on around campus, creating a deafening cacophony of anxious thoughts. Nik quickly tossed a shirt on over his head before slamming his locker closed and nearly yanking his phone out of his pocket. He quickly tapped away on his phone, planning to shoot off a quick text to the name at the top of his app.
>Hey Una, can we lie on the lawn for a bit. I'm feeling overwhelmed an|<
Nik stopped typing, reading back through his message again. His mind wandered back to the conversations he had with Una as of late. The night they kissed... and, well, the second night they kissed. And as his mind played through the memories, Nikolai Markov sighed and deleted that text. She had enough to worry about as is. With that in mind, he shot off a different text to her.
>Just got out of DR, no plans 2nite. U?<