Todd sat back and grinned at the painting of Wanda. It was finished at last. All that remained was leaving it alone for a day or two so it could dry completely, then wandering down to the shop classroom and begging a few people to make him a frame. He could hand it over to Pietro shortly after that.
He couldn't wait to see the other boy's face.
Todd was very pleased with the way she came out. She looked just like he was hoping she would, almost reminiscent of a female Pietro, though the angles of her face were softer and her hair was dark, almost black. She looked at peace with herself, mind absorbed in the bouquet of flowers she held in her hand, eyes almost appearing to be full of thought with a touch of wonder. Todd had never met Wanda, of course, but he hoped he'd done her justice.
Leaving the painting on the easel, Todd gathered his things together, in an odd good mood. He's seen Risty about a half an hour earlier and was sharply informed that she was once again going to hang out with Rogue. Todd knew that whenever that happened, she'd come back to the apartment in a rare good mood, usually after six, and so long as he was quiet and stayed out of her way, he could usually escape any pain she might have otherwise planned for him.
He'd had lunch with Lance, met with John, stolen his wallet, finished Pietro's painting, and now he had nearly three hours all to himself and would no doubt make it through the night totally intact.
Today had been a good day.
Shouldering his backpack over his good shoulder, Todd left his studio, locking the door behind him and giving a little wave to Mrs. Littlefield as he passed her on his way out into the hallway. Todd had a vague plan of what to do with his free time. He needed to stop by the grocery store and buy several items for the Morlocks - not so much in exchange for information about John, but more just for the sake of doing it. He knew they often ate whatever they could find, a lifestyle Todd himself had grown quite accustomed to over the years, so he knew how much just a few cans of fresh food could matter. So lost in his musings as he drew up a mental shopping list, he didn't notice Duncan Matthews standing near his locker until he'd plowed straight into him.
"Hey!" shouted the much taller, much stronger boy, spinning around. He glared down at Todd like he was worth less than the insects he'd eaten for lunch. "Trying to steal my wallet, Toad?" he sneered and his ever-present chorus of jock friends laughed.
"Nah... I was trying to steal your brain, man, but then I remembered there ain't nothin' there." Todd slapped his good hand over his mouth as soon as the insult left it, but it was too little, too late as Duncan's face twisted in fury, two big, meaty hands grabbing the front of Todd's shirt. The sound of his body hitting the metal lockers reverberated down the empty school hallway and Todd winced.
Well, so much for getting through this day pain-free.
"What did you say?" Duncan said slowly, his face dangerously close to Todd's.
"If you didn't get it the first time, I ain't gonna repeat it," Todd said, somewhat disbelieving he was saying it at all. Maybe that last concussion from Mystique had been one too many. "I mean, what's the point, yo? I don't think I could use any smaller words."
This was probably going to hurt, Todd knew, and he braced himself as Duncan's eyes went very, very dark.