Jeanne: But that’s not what’s bothering you. You are trying to decide whether to stand with your current classmates, or your former ones
Laura: I… dislike seeing them held against their will. I understand it’s for their protection. It’s true, if left alone, they would likely endanger themselves. And it is ridiculous to compare it to internment camps or prisons. But still…
Jeanne: The choice is being taken from them.
Laura: Yes. But I am concerned my own emotions and prejudices— having been confined most of my life— are affecting my feelings.
Jeanne: This is not my area of expertise. But perhaps they should.
Laura: Thank you. I don’t know why the others call you cold.
Jeanne: Then I’ve helped you make a decision?
Laura: Not yet.
Avengers Academy #30
So, I’ve been really enjoying the reoccurring theme of choice in Academy, which was very focused on in this issue. From Jenny unsure of whether she should have sex with Ken, even though she’s heavily traumatized by her attempted first-time w/her former bf, but she’s also afraid she might lose Ken if she doesn’t. And Laura lets her know it’s her choice, that if it doesn’t feel right, then she shouldn’t have sex w/him. What truly matters here are her feelings. To Jeanne turning down Humberto & commenting she doesn’t want any of her choices being limited for her. Just because a future turned out a certain way, she won’t let that decide what happens to her. They may have been together in that timeline, and he wants to be with her now, but that doesn’t mean she has to automatically get with him, she has a say on who she dates. And in these panels, Laura’s choice of where to stand in all of this and she ultimately decided based on what she felt was right and wrong. As well as the X-Kids choices being taken away here, that they don’t even get a say in any of this.
And choice was also a huge theme in Marjorie Liu’s solo for Laura and I’m very happy to see Christos Gage continuing that theme with her as well here. Sometimes it’s also glossed over that Laura joining Avengers Academy was actually her personal choice, whereas with the previous teams she’s been on, it wasn’t necessarily her own decision. And I just love that in this book, we are always seeing the kids learning to make their own choices and decisions for themselves on what they feel is right to them, regardless of others. They’re always just growing into better characters.