Okay, so parts of the world are literally on fire right now, and apparently, that has not been an environment in which I creatively thrive. So I’m a book behind in all this madness on Breed, and the fourth book is essentially happening right now- and I feel like I need to be working on it right now. I don’t have much to give, but what I can do is try to keep up on this, now, maybe entertain some of you, maybe just make some of you feel less alone with this moment than you do now. Daily chapters is the goal, in solidarity with those doing the hard and necessary work of protesting, until my spirit or my fingers break. And I’m going to make sure we catch up on any remaining posting, here, too.
I guess, the important thing you need to know is the missing third book is all about kids in cages (seriously, fuck Trump and every asshole who’s enabled/ling this quagmire). If you’re new to the series, or me, hi, the Breed are an attempt at a modern, relatively real-world, representative X-Men, where the kids are also dealing with all of the non-metaphorical real-world bigotries while trying to learn how to use their fantastic abilities to craft a better world. Quick caveat: the school is in the Pacific Northwest, so the events take place in Seattle, even if they’re more of a composite of issues nationwide.
“This time feels different,” Drake said, scrolling through his phone in the back seat. “I mean, there’s brands who’ve never shared any political opinions more controversial than about killing off Mr. Peanut sharing the BreedLivesMatter tag, BlackLivesMatter, the whole Magilla.”
“And I sense a butt, besides your boney one digging into my thighs,” Demi said.
“Don’t be a sore loser just because I won the coin toss.”
“Who says I lost? Maybe I like a sharp butt.”
“To answer the question, it feels… good. Like maybe things could change, and for the better. And that’s just waving a big red flag in front of the raging bull that is our chaotic universe.”
“Last time we were here in Seattle, the cops marched in solidarity with us,” Mikaela said from the passenger seat in the front.
“They also got shot at, for that solidarity,” Tucker said from behind the wheel. “And I think Drake’s right. This time is different. And I don’t think all those differences will fall in our favor.”
“This a psychic thing?” Iago asked, grinning wide.
“Telepaths aren’t- we read thoughts, not the future.”
“He knows, Tuck,” Demi said, rolling her eyes. “Your brother’s fucking with you. Carful of eligible ladies, and he only wants to Luke your Leia.”
“I hate you,” Iago said.
“We all hate her for that, a little,” Mikaela said. “Though I’d hardly call you and Mayumi back there a carful.”
“I thought you batted for both teams.”
“I wouldn’t pinch-hit him with somebody else’s wood.”
“Cause you and Tuck used to, ahem.”
“Oh, my God, I’m going to drive us off the next cliff I see,” Tucker muttered.
“Partially, yes. It would be a lot like stealing someone else’s bike that was the same model as your lost one… similar enough to feel weird, but still not quite right. either.”
“I’m getting a little uncomfortable with the discussion of ‘riding me like a bike,’” Iago said.
“I don’t know, you look like you could handle some rough back roads to me,” Demi said.
“But to encourage you to dismount, I think it has way more to do with the fact that Mikaela was into Tucker when my brother was still my sister. I mean, I can’t tell you how many movies I had to try to just ignore the awkward lesbian pawing through.”
“You could have just not watched movies with them,” Demi offered.
“You have no idea how many times we suggested that,” Tuck said.
“Yeah, but my parents wouldn’t let me watch PG-13 movies on my own, and I was already spending what in retrospect was probably a little too much time masturbating as it was. Besides, it prepared me for a couple years down the road when all of my friends were doing the same. Puberty might be necessary, and whatever, but it is gross and sticky, and I still can’t account for all of the stains.”
“I feel like I probably deserve this comeuppance,” Demi said, “but I still don’t have to like it.”
“You should just be thankful you’re on that side of the car. This side, one of the stains never seems to actually dry. It’s not so moist it’ll leave a spot on my jeans, but to the touch?”
“I don’t want to know what you did in my backseat, do I?”
“Please,” Drake put up his hands, “nobody touch that with a ten foot pole.”
“I mean, ten feet is generous, but I appreciate the vote of confidence,” Iago said with a laugh.
“I hate to bring anybody down, but, what’s the plan?” Mayumi asked. “Because trouble has a history of finding us, and I don’t like the idea of improvising on the spot.”
“Oh, shit,” Mikaela said. “I guess it hasn’t been that long since you got attacked at the school. I didn’t even… sorry.”
“It’s okay. And, that feels like a lifetime ago. I’m not the same person. But that’s why I want to know what to do. If things happen. What’s our plan?”
“Our plan is peaceful protest. There’s a lot of people just waiting for an excuse, to call us animals, to call us inhuman, or worse. So we don’t give them a reason- we use force in the only circumstances it should be okay for cops to: to save our lives or someone else’s. And even then, minimum necessary force to get the job done. Just because Iago can instantly build a sixty-story ice phallus and drop it on someone’s head, doesn’t mean he needs to to subdue them.”
“I didn’t say I could, just that I thought I’d figured out a theoretical way to. And it doesn’t have to be a penis.”
“You said ice dick. And it is way past too late for any of us to unlearn that you’re a jackass. Just embrace who you really are. But does that clear things up, Mai?”
“It does. But, if anything does happen, I’d still suggest you get behind me.”
“I’m not sure how I feel about using you as a four foot tall meat shield.”
“We all have our strengths. Maybe someday we’ll really need a giant ice dick.”
“We’re here,” Tucker said, putting the car into park and then removing the keys from the ignition.
“Before we get out,” Mikaela started, “we could be walking into a firestorm. This could be the last quiet, contemplative moment we get and, I’d like to just spend a moment remembering Greg Lloyd. I think we all felt that officer’s knee in our necks, watching the video. He was one of us, and he didn’t deserve to die like that in the street.”