Come Together

Title: Come Together
Who: Colin, Heather and Tiago
When: October 5th, 2010
Where: The Redwood
What: Colin invites Tiago and Heather over to hang out. The former receives an offer, and the latter brings her two little plants along for the ride.

===< The Redwood >===
Inside the giant redwood, there is actually living space, and due to the size, there's a lot of room to go around. The main area is a parlor of sorts, with wooden-framed furniture grown out of the wooden floor, the upholstery on which seems to resemble thick leaves and petals, and are as comfortable as any cushion. There are monitors all over the place, as well as a large one in front of the furniture that resembles a television, save that the casing seems to be grown out of the same wood as the floors and furniture. Off to the right is a multi-monitored computer array, the interface and chair also grown out of the walls and floor. There are at least four doors that can be seen leading out of the main room, presumable to living facilities and amenities. The lights that dot the walls and the 30-foot high ceiling inside the tree are seemingly made of a soft phosphorescent fungus.

While he was out, just getting some medical equipment that needs to be replaced often, Colin gave Tiago a call to tell him to come meet him at his place. In priase for Colin, he didn't stammer too much about it. But, he wanted to talk to Tiago about a few things, and that he was also meeting Heather there as well, due to an incident that happened a while back. On the way home, he stopped for a couple of pizzas; at least one being fully vegetarian, just in case. He has plenty of drinks at home, and this was all spur of the moment for him. However, when he gets inside his home, finally, he doesn't see Rebecca about. "Becky?" Hmm. Maybe she just stepped out. Living in a tree might be confining to some…

Tiago has been forced to keep a slightly lower profile over the last week. His label's next big runway show is fast approaching and that means deadlines, deadlines, deadlines. When he hasn't been buried under sketchpads, he's been running his poor sewing machine into the ground, so the call from Colin was well-timed. Getting out of the studio for a few hours and chilling with friends should do him good. So, with a small bag slung over his shoulder, he makes his way towards Colin's tree, smile already sitting comfortably on his lips. He's never quite sure what to do once he gets there, Colin's usually waiting for him but not this time. Hesitantly, and aware that he might look like a loon to any non-clued in passersby, he taps on the 'door' of the Redwood with his knuckles.

Heather appears out of the wall rather than stepping through the door. She couldn't have managed a door anyway, her hands are full with a rather wide planter, about 30 inches across, and about eight inches deep. She sits it down on an empty spot with a small oof. Inside are two little plants, about six inches tall. They're shaped almost like a tubby pitcher plant, but with a ring of roots around the base that are just peeking out of the soil, and a ring of little tendrils around the 'mouth'. She looks down at the plants. "If you two don't start walking soon, then no more trips. You're getting too heavy." The little tendrils wave at her.

There's a quiet alert from Rose…and maybe a 'smooch' noise or two from Colin's own AI, as the person at the door is identified, and let on. Colin brightens a little, though his attention is also wrapped up when Heather appears with her charges. He immediately goes for a closer look. "Unbelieveable," he says, the botanist in him practically doing cartwheels. Still, the sound of another approaching sets off dueling cartwheels in another part of Colin's head; the 'person' in him. "Tiago, we're in here. I've got pizza. You have to see this!"

"Thank you!" Tiago says to the Redwood as he allows him to enter. He doesn't fully understand the deal with Rose yet but he gets it enough to know that he should be polite to her. He doesn't like to offend. Making his way through the now familiar environment he's growing so fond of, Tiago's smile brightens further when he hears Colin's voice. And not just because he's being offered pizza. Poking his head into the room, his eyebrows jump up as he spots Colin's second guest. "Hello!" he grins as he spies Heather, waving a hand at her. "Oh, you brought the little ones!" He's met the two plants before, if only briefly, but he still rushes over to their side to peer down at them and coo. "They are getting bigger, I think?"

Heather grins. "I showed them to him the other day." She holds out a finger to the little plants, and they run their tendrils along it, then quiet down, the tendrils settling loosely around them. She gently touches the tops of the roots. "The parent plant, the roots could pull out of the soil and wade through it. It used the roots and tendrils both to dig through the ground. They're growing slowly… mainly they've been getting pudgy for winter." She touches them lightly, stroking. "I'm keeping careful measurements. They grew like little weeds at first, but the growth has slowed as winter gets closer."

Despite himself, Colin extends a finger towards one of the tendrils. He's not going full Doctor Mode, at least. "Do you think they'll remain active, or go dormant for the winter months? Though, winters around here aren't all that bad compared to up north. Your contacts in New York will be able to tell us more about that environment." He looks over at Tiago as the latter…coos. He tries not to laugh. "So," he says. "Ti, while you're here…"

The tendrils stroke along Colin's finger, exploring, then settle down again.

Tiago beams at the little plants as he watches them running their tendrils along Heather's finger. Apparently, he's decided to think of them as regular babies and so is delighted and awed by everything they do. He doesn't follow Colin's lead in reaching out to them though. He'll leave any physical interaction to the actual experts and just adore quietly from the sidelines. "Do they have names?" he asks Heather, tearing his gaze away from the plants to quickly glance at her. He's forced to do that again when Colin addresses him, smiling as he looks up at his friend. He likes it that Colin called him 'Ti'. "Yes, my friend?"

Heather nods, "I don't know… Truth is, the weather is part of why I moved here myself. Winters in Georgia made me slightly sluggish, and I don't want to even think about further North." She pauses, "My mother's sleepiness in winter has gotten worse as she gets older. She all but hibernates during the winter. She's warned me that when Dad dies she… is going to put down roots. Literally." She grins, "This one is Velo, since it always moves before it thinks. It's the first to touch anything. The other is Calli, and it figured out the switch for the grow lights first."

"Latin for 'Quick' and 'Clever,'" Colin says, automatically translating the Latin words. "They are little cuties." Colin seems…softened by their presence. And he just called bio-engineered tentacled plant creatures 'cuties.' Boy needs a life, stat. He lets out a sad breath. "Roots? Oh, Heather, I'm sorry." He doesn't have her growing up experience, but losing both parents, technically, at the same time? The thought kills him inside. "Well, Tiago. Thing One: Want to meet with Rebecca, for designs? She'd love newly-designed clothes, and you get to work with a celebrity."

Tiago grins at the names, clearly approving of them. Leaning down, he lowers his voice to gently but cheerfully address the little ones. "Hello Velo, hello Calli!" he says, waving a hand. "I am your cool Uncle Tiago. It is nice to meet you properly!" He can't be the clever parental figure so he's decided that the role of cool uncle is perfect for him. After offering the plants a quick wink, he returns his attention to Colin, and a broad smile lights up his face, eyes widening. "She said this?" He might need to sit down. "I would love it! I will meet with her as soon as I can. Oh! I wonder if she would model for me! She would look beautiful in the piece I am working on at the moment…" He drifts off, staring into space as he mentally adjusts the dress he's thinking about to fit Becky. He has a doofy grin on his face. This development has pleased him.

Heather nods a little, "She's holding on for Dad, but his heart isn't what it used to be. My brother, Ash, does most of the heavy work around the farm now." She grins, "My full name's Heather Starchild Light, and my siblings are named Ash, Holly, and Lily… can you tell my parents were hippies? I'm the only one that takes after mom though…" She grins and tries not to laugh at Tiago. "Rose? Did Tiago bring his sketchbooks or is there a spare one we can loan him? I think he's off in Happy Designer Land." She does giggle, just a little.

"I don't have anything on paper," Rose comments, voice coming from everywhere. "But I can set up a digital easel with a direct POP server to send directly to his e-mail account."

"Thank you, Rose," Colin replies.

"At least something will get out of the house," Rose quips.

Colin sighs a bit, and shares a chuckle with Heather. "He does get that look in his eye a lot," he admits. And he likes it, from the grin. "Your parents, too? Well…okay, not quite the same. My folks were born in the mid-sixties, and decided to go all neo Hippie after college. So things were…liberal, growing up." He smiles at Tiago, absently moving a hand towards Velo. "She would, I think. I told her I knew someone in the fashion indistry, but not that it was you." He pauses. "Also, if it's not taking advantage of your good mood too much, I was telling the others we should stick together, hero-wise." Beat. "As a group."

Tiago is too busy mentally altering hem lines and collars to listen to what's being said too closely but it suddenly occurs to him that Heather and Rose are talking about him. Snapping back to reality, he offers Heather a healthily suspicious grin, before realising he doesn't know what Rose just said. "What is happening to my e-mail account?" he asks, though he doesn't sound too concerned. If Rose is playing with his e-mail account, he's sure she's doing something good with it. "I will tell Becky who I am the very next time I see her," he decides when Colin mentions covering for him. "You two both know, so she should too." The mention of teaming up brings his smile back in full shiny force. "Yes, I would like this! Me and Heather talked about this idea a bit and I have been thinking about it a lot since. I think it is a great idea!" He clasps his hands together, delighted. "We can do so much more together! And it is good because I do not like to be alone. When I am doing the heroing, I mean." It's fairly clear that he means he doesn't like being alone ever.

Heather nods, "I would like to have someone to watch my back. Perhaps Becky would team up with us too?" She pauses, "Having me on the team could cause problems though… most people think of my mom as a villain, and I use the same code name and wear the same mask. To be honest, the boots and belt are hers too. The body suit is one I got during the Quake recovery. There was an older hero who had crates of generic body suits in standard colors."

"Already asked her," Colin answers with a chuckle. "She said yes, so we're offically a quartet on this one." He nods, understanding. "Your mother was the previous Flora," he says. "That doesn't bother me, personally, though I see where you're coming from. We'll work it out. And not abandon you, besides." Still, the team forming cheers Colin up like woah. "So, pizza?"

Heather shakes her head, "I don't have to eat food, so I seldom do." She hands Colin a case slung over her shoulder. "These are the non viable tissue samples from the mother plant. I preserved them by super cooling them at the University lab, so you might want to get them stored away safe…"

Tiago's happy smile dims a little as he considers Heather's problem. "We cannot leave you out, Heather. We will think of something. Do not worry," he smiles. There must be a loophole they can exploit to keep the powers that be off her back. "Ooh, pizza! I will be happy to take care of your share of that, Heather," he says with a grin. There can never be too much pizza, in his opinion. As Colin takes away the case Heather brought with her, Tiago regards Heather. "I wonder if… well, the rest of us have licenses, and I think we all have good reputations. If we register that we are becoming a proper team, then perhaps that will allow you to work with us without registering? Under our supervision. I mean, we would not actually be 'supervising' you because you are our equal but… maybe it would stop them from bothering you?"

Heather says, "Maybe… we'll see. If nothing else, then after my father passes away, and my mother gives up her human side, I can register then." She swallows hard. "I really don't like thinking about that, but… I understand it, in a way. Anyway… if we are going to be a team, maybe you should design costumes for all of us?""

Tiago nods softly as he takes a seat, dropping his own bag to rest on the floor. "I hope that does not happen for a long time," he says gently. "Colin and me can look into the legal side of things. Hopefully here will be an easy way around this." Or a way that involves lots of red tape, but he's sure they'll figure something out either way. Not wanting to dwell on the subject of Heather's mother if she doesn't want to think about it, he brightens as she mentions the team again, then brightens even more when she suggests costumes. "Oh! Yes! I would enjoy that! I could keep everybody's current costumes and add a new element that we all share. And Becky might like a brand new costume. I mean, her old one is iconic but… well. It might be a bit old-fashioned now."

Heather nods, "And well… I'd like to keep my mother's mask, but the rest of it… Maybe if it looked less like her costume, I'd have fewer problem. After all, there aren't -that- many good plant-related code names." She grins impishly, "Oh, remember I mentioned my odd hair color issues?" She takes off her wig and… her hair is currently orange and -scarlet-. Honestly the color of leaves in fall, and from the way the colors perfectly blend and layer with each other, it's natural.

"Yes!" Tiago agrees, as if he's just had a revelation. "If you do have to register then you could just say you are not connected to the original Flora! But they might not believe you." He pauses, considering that, before waving a hand. "We will come up with something. Everything will be okay." It suddenly occurs to him that Heather is giving him a little more creative license with her costume than he'd been expecting and a big smile breaks across his lips. "Oh, I will come up with something great for you. You are so pretty anyway, it will be easy to make you look like a goddess." He seems entirely confident in that as he reaches for a slice of pizza. By the time he's pulled it apart from the rest of the pizza and lifted it to his lips, Heather's wig has come off. "Oh, Heather! Look at your hair! Oh, it is lovely. And amazing!" He pauses to marvel at it for a moment, before concern crosses his features. "It will not… fall out, will it? Like leaves fall off trees in fall?"

Heather grins, "I wish… it /hurts/ to cut it, and it bleeds. Well, it bleeds sap, same as when I cut my finger or something. It looks like hair, but it isn't, not really. No, it just changes color as the chlorophyll dies out in the winter… the oranges and reds will fade to sort of a brown by christmas, and come spring, which thankfully is early here in California, it will start turning green again." She ruffles her hair, which seems naturally wavy. "I can't cut it, perm it, or dye it… it's a permenant bad hair day." Well… actually it's kind of pretty. Not at all a human color, but nice.

Tiago listens with fascination as Heather describes her non-hair hair. "It is not bad," he says quickly, shaking his head. "Your hair is very amazing, and it looks great. Trust me, I know about these things," he adds, with a grin. He's not a hairdresser but he wouldn't be very good at his job if he couldn't recognise cool things when he sees them. Taking a bite of the pizza, he pauses to enjoy it for a moment before a thought occurs to him. "We will have to have a name! The team, I mean. I wonder if Colin has a name planned already. He is very clever," he notes. Just in case anyone had failed to notice.

Heather nods, "He is… He might have something in mind, at that. Colin's cute too… he gets this silly little smile on his face when he's watching you." She sounds amused, rather than than attracted when she talks about Colin being cute. And when she explains -what- specifically she finds cute. Well, it's obvious she's not interested in Colin for herself. "Rose is right though, he needs to get out more. Maybe you could drag him out shopping with you, or ask him out for dinner or something."

"He does?" Tiago thinks about that for a moment, before a little shy smile touches his lips. He casts his gaze away and his cheeks grow a little pinker. "That is good to know," he admits. He's not normally shy about these matters but Colin is… well. It's important to him that he takes it easy and doesn't mess this one up. "We are supposed to be having dinner together soon. Actually, that was what we were about to do the night Becky showed up. I think he's hoping to do that in the next few days. So… that will be nice." A self-conscious grin appears on his lips and he clears his throat. "I will let you know how it goes." Heather will get all the gossip first. "So, what about you? Is there anybody you have your eye on? I know it is not so simple for you."

Heather turns an interesting golden color. "No, not really… I mean, humans just don't hold much appeal for me. It would just be nice to… have someone to talk to who was more like myself." She is -so- not going to say that she's hoping to spend more time with Colin's AI, Rose. Especially since Rose can hear everything said in the house.

Tiago nods a little, chewing thoughtfully on his pizza. It occurs to him briefly that he could suggest to Colin that he should grow someone for Heather but realises that idea is a little insane. Not inconceivable, maybe, but a bit nutsy and possibly even a bit insensitive. "I know what you mean. Even just having friends helps. I used to find it very hard. Before Colin and you and Becky, I mean. I have other friends but there are things I can talk to you about and know you will understand. It makes everything seem a bit easier." He pauses for a swig of his drink. "I hope you find someone you have a connection with. You deserve it, you are a lovely lady."

Heather grimaces, "Well, give me enough time and I might go crazy-lonely like my mother did and fall in love with a human." She pauses dramatically. "Nyaaaah…." then she laughs. "I should take the babies home. And you should convince Colin to get some sleep rather than spend all night with the samples I gave him."

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