"Pleased to meet the both of you, then." The trio walked up the stairs to Ben's apartment. It was mostly clean, but anyone knew a bachelor pad when they saw it. In the living room were piles and piles of books, some in danger of tipping over. A cursory glance saw books ranging from tarot, to the occult, to new age medicine, biographies on many prominent persons in history, and many thesises about psychology, para-normality, and ESP. Near the computer desk were piles of stapled papers that ranged much of the same topics.
"Erm... sorry about the mess. Research and all. Oh, there's also some soda in the fridge, if you two are thirsty." Looking at Mist, he added, "Booze is off limits, and if you need a smoke, the awning is over there."
After a few more moments of pleasantries, Ben took a seat in his favorite chair and let the other two take the ends of the couch across from him. "Ok. I guess it's time to talk about who we are and what we do."
Taking a deep breath, Ben continued, "Sorry for the life story, but I grew up in Seattle, and had a run of the mill childhood and time in high school. I joined the military and I served during the invasion of Iraq. I lost a few friends over there, and a few times I probably should have died, but I didnt. I manifested over there, during a firefight, which is probably what attributes to my trigger, more on that later.
Things were bad in Fallujah, and many wont talk about it, but suffice it to say, there were magi on boths sides, all of them cowboys. They weren't part of a larger group. Hell, the US Armed Forces didnt even know about magi. A lot of the news stories about IEDs werent exploded from munitions, they were about certain individuals who could turn mass into energy. We were all new to this, or there would have been much more weird stuff that wouldnt be explainable. After that, well, we went home. I havent been keeping in contact with any of my friends from the service, so who knows what's what anymore."
Ben took a gulp from his water glass and continued about magic. "As far as research with magic, sorry kids, I'm learning this stuff as I go as well. I've bought books and spent plenty of time on the net, but there are *no* experts in this field. Well, no one that's respected anyways. Quite a few dubious ones though... A few hundred years of witch hunts, inquisitions, and general apathy towards mysticism has pretty much killed off magic. If I had to peg a recent figure in history as a mage, I'd have to say Rasputin of Russia comes close, but he's either dead, or a hermit in the Russian Steppes.
You can call me over cautious, but look at history if you need proof about magic being ostracised. This is serious stuff and if you dont use it wisely, it will come back at you, whether through public awareness, or even a Magic Burn.
Well... that's what I have to say, for starters. I'd at least like you to tell me about yourselves before choosing if you want to learn more with me, or just walking out."