|Dates run:||July 18-26, 2015|
|Read the logs:||Different Breed|
But you, Jean-Paul, are a mutant. And I did not want anyone else to know this.
When an Olympic-level skiier is blackmailed over the results of his blood tests, his whole world comes crashing down.
At the age of 21, while preparing for the 2018 Olympics, Jean-Paul is approached by Philippe Leblanc, a man from the IOC, who states that he knows about Jean-Paul’s 2009 x-gene test results. Baffled, Jean-Paul rebuffs the man’s attempts at further conversation and leaves the area. He does, however, immediately call his coach, Maurice Cloutier, knowing that the potential for a scandal, even a manufactured one, is huge and could be very, very messy.
His coach asks for a one-on-one meeting with Jean-Paul, keeping everything very hush-hush. Upon arriving at the meeting, Cloutier informs the skier that Leblanc is correct about the 2009 test results. Jean-Paul is a mutant. Thinking this is some kind of elaborate joke, it takes several long moments for the young man to realize his coach is serious. It turns out that Cloutier bribed multiple people in very high places within the IOC to hide the positive test results when they arrived, a task made easier by the fact that Jean-Paul had no discernible mutation whatsoever. Any athlete intent on pursuing a professional career in their chosen sport would face scandal, to say nothing of the accusations of cheating, if it came to light that they have the x-gene. However, after winning multiple gold medals and ostensibly utilizing the corruption within the IOC to dupe the public, Jean-Paul’s scandal would break in waves, each growing progressively worse.
Cloutier tells Jean-Paul not to worry about it, that he will handle the situation with the blackmailer. Believing him, yet unsure how to deal with the revelation that he is x-gene positive, Jean-Paul retreats to Montreal and his suite in his former guardian Raymonde Belmonde’s home. It is less than a week later that he hears the news about the IOC official’s body being found in a bad part of Quebec City. Appalled, he and Belmonde arrange a meeting with Cloutier so that they can confront the man.
Raymonde and Jean-Paul arrive at the meeting, but Jean-Paul agrees to take a short car ride with his coach so they could speak privately. While in the car, Cloutier begins to explain his side of the story - he wishes only to do what is best for Jean-Paul, etc. It is in the midst of this explanation that Cloutier runs a stoplight, disregarding the young skier’s frantic attempts to get him to stop. An SUV hits the car, and the force of the impact propels Jean-Paul, not wearing his seat belt, through the windscreen. Only he doesn't land where one might expect. Adrenalin, pain, and panic combine to fully trigger his mutation and he flies well over a hundred yards beyond the wreckage, somehow miraculously avoiding hitting the SUV in the process. His uncontrolled landing leaves him with bruises and contusions, while his trip through the windscreen gives him several cuts. Beyond that, though, he is uninjured, not even suffering a concussion.
Belmonde arrives, having witnessed the end result of the crash, and whisks a dazed Jean-Paul back to his Montreal residence. There, the older man makes several cryptic phone calls, which ultimately lead to an acquaintance of his making contact with Angelo Espinosa. Belmonde’s publicist puts the word out that, due to the car crash, Jean-Paul will be discontinuing his training regime, and is unlikely to compete in the 2018 Olympics. Instead, he is choosing to return to school so he can continue his education. After his recovery from the injuries he sustained in the crash, which left his coach comatose, he will be traveling to the United States to familiarize himself with the area around the school he wishes to attend prior to beginning the application process.
Thus, a confused, newly manifested Jean-Paul arrives at the mansion. Uncertain as to his abilities, unable to go back to the things with which he’s most familiar and comfortable, he must carve out a new place for himself and hope that the past doesn’t come back to haunt him yet again.
Trivia and Meta
Philippe Leblanc: Blackmailer, potential whistle-blower. Found out about the test results through an acquaintance who’d accepted a bribe from Cloutier. He decided he could probably get more money if he went to the actual source, so he approached Jean-Paul directly, demanding money in exchange for his silence. Things didn’t go as planned for him. (Socker: AJ)