Character/Pairing: X-23/Captain America, OC
Summary: As Laura searches for herself in Africa, She meet the man who was the first to have given her a choice.
Rating: PG-13 (for now)
Spoilers: Up to X-23 #3
A/N: Laura's 18 in this one
Disclaimer: Yeah, I know! I don't anything, I am very sad, and I am moving on!
Kisumu City, Kenya. 0627 EAT
As Laura stepped off the plane, she pulled her aviator sunglasses out of her rifle green shirt jacket and placed them over her emerald eyes. She rushed towards the baggage claim and carousel then grabbed her olive army duffel bag and swung it over her shoulder. She proceeded to the exit when…
“Excuse me, miss?” Laura sighed and turned around to face two Kenyan soldiers, both carrying G3 assault rifles. Her training told her that she should incapacitate them in order to avoid being brought in. However, over the past six months, she learned that it was better not to kill and to cooperate and be polite as much as possible.
“Good morning,” she said with a courteous smile as she moved her glasses away from her eyes and on top of her head. “Is there a problem?”
“No problem, miss,” said the first soldier. “We need to see your passport, please.”
“My passport?” Laura repeated. Perhaps it was better to kill them. “Why?”
“You are an American, yes?” the second soldier asked.
“That’s correct,” replied Laura. “I have already been cleared in Nairobi.”
“We are checking all foreigners in Kisumu. Standard procedure,” the second soldier explained. Laura looked around to see that indeed both the Canadian couple and the Scottish photographer were being interviewed by Kenyan soldiers. She sighed, unzipped her bag, and pulled out her passport. The first soldier took it and studied it carefully.
“So, Ms. Kinney,” he began. “You are staying at the Imperial?”
“No, I am not,” said Laura and both soldiers looked up.
“Then where do you plan on staying?” the second soldier demanded.
“At my home.”
Laura and the two soldiers turned around to see a Kenyan man in his mid-thirties coming from the exit.
“Ninyi ni nani? (Who are you?)” the first soldier demanded.
“Oman Dia,” the man replied as he pulled out his identification and Laura gave out a sigh of relief. This was the man she was supposed to meet.
“Dia?” the second soldier repeated. “No relation to Saburi Dia?”
“My brother,” replied Oman casually. The second soldier’s eyes widened with shock and awe. The first one merely shook his head.
“And how do you know this girl?” he asked gesturing towards Laura.
“Her professor is a friend of my wife’s,” Oman explained truthfully.
“You are a student?” the second soldier asked Laura and Laura nodded hesitantly when she saw Oman’s consent through his eyes. “What are your studies?”
“Theology,” Laura replied, which was half true.
“She has come as a guest to my household and to learn from my brother,” Oman said.
The first soldier sighed and handed Laura back her passport and Oman his I.D. card.
“Welcome to Kisumu, Miss Kinney,” he said.
“Asante (thank you),” Laura said as she took her passport and slid her glasses back over her eyes.
Once the soldiers were out of sight and earshot, Oman turned to Laura and held out his hand and smiled.
“Radhi na hatimaye kukutana na wewe (Nice to finally meet you),” he chuckled.
“Vivyo hivyo (Likewise),” Laura said as she shook his hand with her own. She had to remind herself that she could trust this man.
His wife, Amana, used to be Storm’s handmaiden and now very good friend (or in Laura’s view, a very good contact). Ororo told her that she could trust them. In any case, they were the only link to Saburi.
“Let me help you with your things,” Oman offered but Laura had already swung her duffle bag back over her shoulder.
Within moments, she was in the passenger side of Oman’s Jeep, looking out into the passing streets of Kisumu.
“Why were those men really questioning us?” she finally asked and Oman sighed as if the question itself was giving him distress.
“Ojore Conteh,” he answered bitterly. “A criminal ringleader of drug dealers, pimps, and every other kind of crook you can think of. For a year, he has torn the Nyanza province, taking young boys to fight his wars and young girls to be his slaves. There have been rumors that he has been in Kisumu District and that he has also been accepting ‘outside help’. That is why those soldiers are questioning all foreigners and those that house them.”
“I am sorry,” Laura said. “For causing you and your family so much trouble.”
Oman laughed unexpectedly.
“You have done no such,” he chuckled. “Any friend of Ororo’s is a friend of the Dias’. Besides my daughter, Eshe, would never forgive me if she didn’t get a chance to meet you.”
“Why would she want to meet me?” Laura asked, taken aback.
“Because you will be the first American she will ever meet,” Oman explained. “She loves everything to do with America. She nearly jumped through the roof when I told her you were coming.
“Lakini usijali (But don’t worry),” he added when he glanced at Laura’s shocked face. “Amana and I made it clear to her that you are here to see Saburi.”
“Asante (Thank you),” Laura said. Though she had learned to treat children with kindness, she preferred this visit to be met with the upmost peace and quiet.
Washington D.C., United States. 2251 EST
Steve looked up from the black and white photo of X-23 to see Agent Walker stumbling into his office with a mountain of files in her arms.
“Do you need any help with that, Agent Walker?” he asked with a bit uncertainty.
“Oh no thank you,” Walker heaved with a smile. “And please call me Pam. Um… where do you want these?”
“Oh, just put them over there, Pam,” Steve gestured towards his coffee table.
Once the stack of papers was placed on the table, Walker took the top file.
“So I got the name from her passport and Customs report from Nairobi Airport,” she began. “The alias she used was Laura Kinney. According to the report, she’s a theology student and there’s some kind witch doctor outside of Kisumu City that she was going to visit. But according to-”
“Wait,” Steve interrupted Walker as he stood up from his desk. “The name on the passport was Laura Kinney?”
“Yeah. Those other files,” Walker nodded towards to said files, “are the reported airport sightings of her using that alias in the past six months, which seems to be everywhere. Anyways-”
“Thank you, Agent Walker,” Steve said as he took the file from Walker’s hands. “I’ll take it from here.”
“Uh, sir?” asked a bewildered Walker.
“It’s late, Pam,” Steve explained. “You’ve been working really hard. You should go home and get some rest. In fact, why don’t you take some time off?”
Walker hesitated, but nodded and thanked Steve. Once she left, Steve looked at X-23’s passport photo, with so many questions in his head. Why was she using her actual name in so many places? What was she really doing in Kenya? Is she on a mission? And what was he going to do about it?