Time line- some point in the past. I'll let you figure out exactly when ;)
How could you still be yourself when you look nothing like... You?
If the person looking at you in the mirror doesn't look like anyone you could put a name to, then who is it?
What if you don't know what you're supposed to look like?
I'm too young for an identity crisis, Mutt thought to himself as he stared at his reflection in the mirror.
His blue eyes were the same deep sapphires he had been born with, but they didn't seem.. young enough to belong on the face of an eleven year old. The dark, shaggy hair that hung in his face, still wet from the hot spray of the shower, was the same as it had always been, but it just.. wasn't right.
The only new addition to his appearance from the night before, when last he caught a glimpse of his reflection, was the white bandage that wrapped around his forearm, covering the stitched wound that he had received.
Mutt rotated his arm, inspecting the tight bandage. He clenched his hand into a fist, flexing his arm. He winced as the stitches pulled on the cut.
"Does it hurt?"
Mutt jumped at the sudden noise and spun around. Standing in the doorway of the bathroom was a girl dressed in a clean t-shirt, jeans, and a black leather jacket. Her hair was wet like his and almost as short. Short enough that she could have been mistaken for a boy, which may have been the reason it had been cut so short. She was young, the youngest of the initiates at the base.
"No," he lied. He realized there was no bulge on her shoulder under her jacket. She had gone to the healer to repair the burn she had recieved in training. "I see yours doesn't either," he said.
Fox shook her head, drops of water falling from her hair. "Jessie healed it," she admitted, confirming Mutt's suspicion. "Maybe you should go see her."
He only nodded and turned back to the mirror, looking back down at his arm. He lit a spark, just to be sure he could without it hurting. He grimaced as another shot of pain darted through his arm.
"I'm sorry," the same voice as before pipped up.
Mutt looked over his shoulder to Fox. He hadn't realized she was still standing there. "Why?" he asked.
"I hurt you," she said quietly.
"Are you apologizing for defending yourself?"
"But we're brothers! I shouldn't have used my blade against you like that."
"I torched your shoulder," he pointed out. "I hope you aren't expecting a bloody apology for that."
Fox looked taken aback. "Of course not. You did save me from falling."
"Well, we couldn't let Raptor's little angel become road kill."
"I am not anybody's little anything," she protested, crossing her arms.
"Oh, really?" Mutt taunted. "He tells you to hop, you hop. He tells you to go get cleaned up, to get patched up, you're done and sparkling again in," he checked his watch, "30 minutes."
"I'm only doing as I'm told."
"Exactly," he said, pushing past her to the barracks. He walked down the isle between the dozen or so bunk beds that stood evenly spaced against either wall. He stopped halfway down the line and slid a duffel bag out from under the bottom bunk.
"You would ignore a direct order?"
Mutt sighed, unzipping the duffel. She had followed him. "I don't know. It depends."
"If Spencer told you to run into a burning building, you wouldn't?"
"Spencer?" he rummaged through the bag.
"I meant Raptor," she said quietly, perhaps embarrassed she had slipped and used their instructor's real name.
"Well, I am vertually invincible to fire, so I'd probably do it. Would you?"
"Who's asking who to run into a burning building?" Both kids looked up to see Mutt's bunk mate, watching them over the guard rail of the top bunk.
"It was a hypothetical question," Fox explained. "To test Mutt's loyalty."
William chuckled and swung his legs over the rail. "He's a mutt, not a hound. His loyalty lies with himself." He winked at Fox, who smiled in return. Mutt ignored both of them and continued going through his bag.
"It isn't here," he grumbled.
"What are you looking for?" Fox asked.
Before he could answer, another girl ran down the sa and stopped beside Fox. Several strands of dark hair had escaped their tight bun and a wild glee widened her chocolate brown eyes.
"Guys!" she panted. "Guess what?"
"Easy there, Tiger," William said, droppin oer the rail and landing next to the new arrival. He rested a hand on her shoulder. "Take a breath and tell us, slowly, what is so urgent."
"Marquez excited? This has to be good," Mutt said under his breath, finally giving up an his task and turning to face the others.
"I heard that!" the girl growled. "Forgot I have super hearin'?"
"And sight, and touch, taste, smell. I know, love," Mutt bantered. "You only remind me every time you yell at me for my disgustin', ashy scent."
"Maybe you wouldn't be so snarky if I put a bullet through your head," she snapped, already reaching for the handgun that hung in the belt around her camo-skirt.
"Saber Tooth, Fire Mutt," Will said sternlly, drilling them with his bright red eyes. As he oldest at 16 years, he found it his (constant) responsibility to keep the hot-head and the super-sense marks-men from starting war, with each other or the other initiates of the order.
"Marquie," Fox Cub said sweetly, yet loudly enough to catch the fuming 12-year-old's attention, "what is it that you wanted to tell us?"
Mutt crossed his arms as the tension in the group suddenly dispersed at the short words of their youngest.
Marquez smiled. "I-."
She was cut off as a blur rushed past the bunk, and put her hands over her ears as a squel echoed through the room when the blur hit its brakes. Curses and protests were shouted from angry initiates who were lounging in the barracks. Before slamming into the wall, the blur swiveled around and sped back to the group.
"Guys!" Jaguar shouted when he finally came to a stop. Several shushes were passed around the room. "Guys," he wispered, "There's gonna be a robbery attempt at Wayne Tower!"