2411/Weekend in Alaska

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Weekend in Alaska
Date of Scene: 11 July 2020
Location: Alex and Emma's suite - Hellfire Club
Synopsis: It should have been a nice weekend away from the usual problems. But, of course, mutants can get nice things. And Sinister casts a long shadow.
Cast of Characters: Scott Summers, Alex Summers, Emma Frost

Scott Summers has posed:
Flights from New York to Anchorage are somewhat complicated affairs, with several stops and usually 15+ hours travel. There are also private jets, which could take a more direct route and certainly would be even more comfortable than First Class in a regular company. But they aren't very fast either.

Then there is the X-Men Blackbird, with a cruise speed of match four. It takes 75 minutes. Scott didn't push the plane, as he is actually testing a new fuel mix. Yes, it is a 'test flight' that is his excuse. Then he will have to perform about twelve hours of maintenance in Anchorage, which neatly fits the 'spend a weekend with the grandparents' plan.

It looks like a Lockheed SR-71 but Emma can testify the resemblance is just skin-deep. The plane is not just a tiny cabin and a huge fuel tank. It can seat a dozen passengers, it has medical facilities, advanced on-board computers and a control panel in the cabin that looks out of a Star Wars movie. And definitely fossil fuel is not the main propulsion method. It is also remarkably quiet, and Scott just smirked at the idea US or Canada's radar facilities could see them.

It also has vertical take off and landing systems, because of course.

The landing place is a small airport some miles from Anchorage. Scott makes sure they land at night (nights are very short here in July!) and that the plane is inside a private hangar and out of sight before he lowers the ramp down.

There is an old man of average height waiting for them. About seventy, but still strong, he is wearing a light coat and a white scarf. There are glasses over his eyes, and he is smiling, definitely there is some familiar resemblance going there.

It is not really cold, but certainly far cooler than the New York evening they left.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex has been sort of quiet for the flight, distracted, having switched over to more fall clothes to deal with the chill. Specifically jeans, a button-up short sleeve shirt that's layered over a black t-shirt, hiking boots and a leather jacket that's currently over the back of the chair untilt hey land at which point he'll slide it back on and offer Emma a hand up. "...well...here we go..." he murmurs. He's been more than a bit unsure about this whole deal, honestly, but between Scott and Emma he's more or less given in to going and trying to reconnect.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma Frost is resplendent in white slacks, white boots, and a shimmery white top under a snug-fitting white bolero jacket. Her makeup is touched up (short flight or no, we was checking that out right before they landed), her hair is shiny and clipped up and back from her face. Though she isn't in business attire, her expression is the same sort of one she might wear before stepping into a hostile board room-- ready to do battle, if she must. Politely. She takes Alex's hand and allows him to help escort her from the Blackbird, and once her feet are on the ground she gives herself a brief once over, brushing imaginary dust from her front. "It'll be fine, Alex," she reassures him.

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott is the first out of the plane. His clothes pretty much matching Alex, but he has added an ancient aviator jacket. He moves forward to give a hug to the old man, which is returned earnestly. "Scott, so good to see you," says the old man, "and... he looks at Alex, and of course to Emma. She has this way to draw attention. But Philips is mostly looking at Alex. He is at lost for words for a few seconds, then he manages a "welcome back home, Alex."

Scott takes a step back, giving the pair some space. After all Philip saw Alex last time when he was six. Does Alex even remember him? The ten years following the fateful plane crash were not kind to Philip Summers. But he knew Scott was alive seven years ago. He didn't know about Alex until last year, when the X-Men found him.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex lets himself be pulled along, nodding curtly to Emma but not responding as he's pulled along, then looks unsure, watchign as his grandfather gives Alex a hug, then holds back as he looks over towards the younger Summers. He hesistates for a moment, then pulls gently away from Emma, releasing her hand as he steps over to give the older man a firm hug. Wordlessly, but his actions speak more for him at this point.

    AFter the hug, he steps back, then snags Emma's hand, pulling her closer. "This is my girlfriend, Emma Frost." he says simply. , squeezing her hand.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma smiles politely at Scott and Alex's grandfather. "It's great to meet you," she says smoothly, as she reaches out with her telepathy to scan the old man reflexively. Ethical telepathy? Permission? What is any of this?

Scott Summers has posed:
Philip clings to Alex for a moment too long, letting him go only reluctantly. He has to blink some tears away to manage a smile for Emma. "Miss Frost, it is a pleasure to meet you. Well, I have to say you make quite a couple."

Philip's mind is so loaded with emotion it is hard to read. Or rather, he is having problems keeping his thoughts clear. But it should clear up in a few minutes. Certainly, he is being sincere, and there doesn't seem to be any sinister motive to have invited them here.

"Deborah is waiting for us in the house, I parked the car just outside," it is large and expensive white SUV, suitable for the often frozen roads of Alaska. "It is just a twenty minutes ride."

Alex Summers has posed:
    "Sounds great..." Alex says simply. "Let's go ssee her then." He'll start heading over to the SUV in question, opening the door for Emma to hop in, ceding her shotgun if she wishes but otherwise hopping in the back seat with her or Scott. "Sorry you had to drive all the way out here...."

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma opts for the back seat with Alex, though she continues to scan Philip, her expression neutral. He had thought Alex and Scott were dead. He searched for them. He didn't know the truth until years later, when he met up with Scott-- who didn't know where Alex was, either. She sees in his memories searching for Alex with Scott.

And the grief-- she sees that too.

This satisfies her at least a little bit, though some of his older memories seem blurry. She cannot tell if from age or tampering, and she figures Alex might be displeased if she starts digging hard enough to shut Philip down for awhile. So she refrains, simply squeezing Alex's hand as they ride along in the back seat towards their destination. Though she does teep to him, <<He thought you were dead. He's beside himself with happiness that you're alive and here.>>

Scott Summers has posed:
"Oh, Scott told me he could land the Blackbird in the garden," replies Philip. "But it didn't sound like a good idea."

"It has a holographic cloak, grandfather," explains Scott.

"Deborah's rose bushes are not to be landed upon. She made it clear when we married." Philip glances back at Alex, "and I would have happily driven all the way to New York to see you again, Alex. Almost did last year." Emma can read he has actually talked with Christopher, Scott and Alex's father, a few times in the last five years. Not enough in his opinion, but apparently even using Shi'ar alien tech it is apparently quite difficult to establish inter-galactic communications. And the old man suspects Christopher has rebuilt his life far from Earth and he doesn't really want to return.

Philip starts the vehicle and they take on an old and empty road. It is dark, just past midnight. Although the sun set just an hour ago this far north. He has a million questions in his head, but he is not sure where to begin.

Alex Summers has posed:
    <<Yeah. But it wouldn't be the first time Sinister fucked with people's memories either.>> Alex notes mentally as he leans back against the seat. "Probably doing it the less direct way would be good. AS long as no one raises an eyebrow at the Blackbird parked at the airport." Alex admits. "So...ah..." He pauses, awkward now. "You...are you still working, or did you retire from the airplane business?" Nice, neutral thing to start with. Circle around the more emotional things.

Emma Frost has posed:
<<No,>> Emma mentally prods him, <<But at least he didn't abandon you.>> She seems less standoffish towards the older man, at least, at this point. Though she does have... questions.. about the space pirate. One thing at a time.

"I think Alex would have liked that," she murmurs to Philip. "Though maybe it's better not. I think this last year has been... eventful." She gives Alex a half grin. "He just finished his master's in rock poking and stone kicking." Her tone has an air of teasing to it.

Scott Summers has posed:
"I am still managing the company. Well, we are," replies Philip. "I am no longer piloting. At least not business flights," he sighs. "Actually, I am going to lose my license next checkup. My eyes are not good enough anymore." He hesitates, then he goes on. "In fact, it is one of the reasons I wanted to see you. I might be selling the company. I have a solid offer. It is a... quite a bit of money. Enough for Deborah and me live like royalty for the time we have left and still leave you two enough to start your own business if you want."

It is not much compared with the Frost fortune, but it seems Philip airline company, which he built himself, counts with half a dozen transport planes, two dozen small propellers for passengers and tourism tours and stock in several local airports. All in all, it is worth a few millions.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex's gaze flickers in suprise as he glances at Phillip, looking unsure how to take that. "It's money you earned. Not me, or Scott." he says finally. "Though neither of us are exactly flying like you do." He smirks at Emma. "...yeah, my skills are more ground based. Never had the opportunity to learn to fly. Not with a plane, anyway."

Emma Frost has posed:
"Mm." Emma tilts her head. "You've had an attorney look over the offer, I assume?" She's used to poison pills and ruinous small print in these sorts of buyouts.

Hell, she's helped //put// those sorts of things in buyouts.

She leans forward a bit, actually somewhat interested. "Frost International has an aviation division," she murmurs. "I'm curious who it is that's buying you out. Just... idly." I mean, she does have corporate enemies that if she can drop a counteroffer and ruin their day, she might consider it.

Scott Summers has posed:
"Hey, I am a pilot," protests Scott. A pilot that will never get a flying license. Not with his mutant eyes.

Philip grins, "I could teach you, Alex. We are a family of flying boys. My dad was a civil engineer, but he could pilot too. I was in the air force, as was Chris. Scott has that... black weird thing," he teases. "Hey, it is an amazing plane!" Protests Scott, duly teased.

At Emma's question, Philip nods. "The lawyer has checked it. And it is actually a neighbor I have know for decades." He is not saying the name. "And here we are," he announces. The Summer's family house is a few miles off Anchorage. There are only a handful of houses at sight, and none is as large. A three-floor building with a large garden attached, all the lot surrounded by a tall stone and metal fence.

Then Emma catches the name of the man that wants to buy the company in Philip's mind: Nathaniel Essex.

Apparently, he is a local businessman that Philip has known since Christopher was a teen. A tall gentleman with a British accent.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex snorts. "Well, yeah, but you're not flying normal passenger and transport stuff around in that thing." he points out to Scott, shrugging slightly, then hesistates. "Well...I don't know if I can stick around this time long enough to learn to fly, I mean...maybe in the future." He's still a bit unsure about the whole trip, it feels...weird. He has so much anger towards Phillip for abandoning him, as far as he knew, and now he finds that none of that was true. It's hard to shift gears.

Emma Frost has posed:
Beside Alex, Emma stiffens. The link she's had between them, undropped since her rescue, suddenly has nothing but tension and utter terror slam across it wordlessly. <<Essex essex essex essex>> this time the telepathy isn't just to Alex, but to Scott as well. There isn't anything besides just a frantic, panicked repeating of that name.

Maybe Emma SHOULD have gotten some therapy like Alex suggested.

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott tenses, shooting Emma an alarmed glance. Philip has parked and is climbing down the SUV, going for the bags in the trunk, and Scott hurries up to meet him, letting Alex deal with the suddenly panicking Emma. "Let me get them, give Alex a minute with Emma," he murmurs to Philip.

Quick check to his cellphone, too. And sending a brief message to Xavier and Jean.

Deborah is waiting at the door. Grey haired and slim, she peers into the darkness, trying to find her long-missing grandson.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex jerks at the sudden panic from Emma, his eyes widening as he looks over, going on alert as he sits up, looking around as he slides an arm around Emma. "Emma....Emma..." he hisses quietly, trying to get her attention, his worry spilling out over their link as well as a surge of protectiveness and anger at that name. He nods to Philip distractedly as he gets out of the car, then once he's out says. "What is it? Where?"

Emma Frost has posed:
"The buyer..." Emma murmurs. "He's the neighbor. He's next door." Her words are in an undertone, and clipped. She's trying not to panic further, trying not to start shrieking or crying or...

Instead, she's just trying to remember to breathe.

<<Next door. Neighbor. Old family friend. Knew your father when he was young. He's always been there. He's probably here now.>> That echoes to both of the Summers brothers, but... quiet. Like a telepathic whisper, like she's trying to be telepathically silent.

Scott Summers has posed:
Way to go to put Scott at the edge of his own anxiety attack. Thanks Emma.

"Scott?" Asks Philip, seeing the younger Summers going pale. That drags Scott back to reality, though. "Oh. I am fine, just the usual pressure changes. Need to sit down a minute." He leans against the hood of the SUV, just in time to receive Deborah's hug.

He really needs a minute to control himself. Grandmom's hug give him the time. To shove his fear and hatred aside, where they don't bother him (too much) and try to keep his mind clear. "Grandma, thank you." Deborah is not sure what is being thanked for, but smiles. "You seem too pale, too much time indoors, hmm? Come inside, I made tea."

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex stays in the back of the SUV, comofrting Emma, though he throws Deborah a slight wave as he switches to a more calm, steady tone. "Emma...just breath. In." He breathes in. "And out." He breathes out. "In." Breath. "Out." Breath. He wants nothing than to get Emma and Scott and probably PHilip and Deborah away from this place at this point, but he doesn't know what to do. Neither of his grandparents know, obviously. Scott is having his own panic attack. He cracks the door, saying. "We'll be in in a moment...grandma, she's just...she doesn't fly well and it's hitting her at once." he makes up on the spot.

Emma Frost has posed:
Scott can probably very much appreciate that Sinister is Emma's boogeyman after recent events. So it takes her a few minutes to control herself, but then an icy, controlled look comes to her face...

And telepathic shielding slams HARD over the Summers boys.

"I'm better. Tea sounds wonderful. Let's have tea."

Scott Summers has posed:
For Scott, Sinister is a long-standing issue. He wasn't brutally tortured 'in the name of science', but Sinister was Doctor Milbury; the horrible director of the orphanage where he spent seven miserable years. He was also the one behind the Morlock Massacre that injured so many of his team and killed hundreds of helpless mutants despite the X-Men desperate resistance. Finally, he is the madman that kidnaped Jean and him for 'explanations' and experiments. He has been the bogeyman for Scott for most of his life.

But he thought it was only after the plane crash!

The idea Sinister has been around his family at least since his father was a teenager unsettles him deeply, and it takes all his self-control to smile to his grandmother and say, "yes, tea would be good."

He just got a confirmation message from the school. So, his communications are not being interfered. This means it is unlikely the Marauders are about to strike. Hopefully.

Grandma's tea should help. But he needs to think. And he needs to decide how much tell Philip and Deborah. This was supposed to be a vacation weekend! As they get into the cozy living room (there is even a smoldering fire at the fireplace) Scott slumps on an armchair, looking deeply unhappy.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex frowns, then slides out of the back seat, opening the door again and giving Emma a hand out. "Are you sure?" he murmurs, glancing after Scott with concern. He...really is not wanting to go inside. This feels like a trap now. He wants to get Emma AND Scott and his grandparents as far as he can away from this place, but he has no idea how to convince them to go. So he very reluctantly starts following Scottinside.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma slips into the house with Scott and Alex, blue eyes flitting around the room and taking it in. It's very comfortable, actually, which is a small relief.

She takes a seat on the loveseat, leaving room for Alex's muscular form to join beside her, neatly settling in. She forces a quick smile, looking to the boys' grandmother, and making a little bit of small talk. "So, it's going to be daylight for almost the whole day tomorrow? Sunrise is going to be not too long from now, and it just set?" She looks amused. "I must admit that will be novel to experience." No mention of Sinister again from her, verbally or telepathically.

Scott Summers has posed:
"Sunrise is at four thirty, in four hours," replies Philip while Deborah serves the tea in an antique porcelain tea set, "but I think you should sleep a little more than four hours."

"You seem all very upset," observes the old woman. "What happened?" He glances at Philip. "I just told them I had an offer for the company," and the man is pretty sure it is not that. Scott shakes his head. He can't exactly explain Emma was mind-reading them, right. "Who is the buyer?" He asks instead.

"Nathan Essex. You probably don't remember him, but I think he was in the house a couple times when you were very small." He sips some tea, and then adds: "He left the town for a while, but returned maybe five years ago. I think he has an apartment in the city and he has an import and export business. Shipping only, but he wants to expand. We talked a couple months ago."

Alex Summers has posed:
    "So he's not around right now? You said he was a neighbor, he doesn't live here?" Alex says slowly. Still a bit tense, which is shown in the tightness of his voice as he reaches down to squeeze Emma's hand quietly as they talk. "We've just...had a rough time of late. We're all recovering." he says after a moment, more awkwardly.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma gives a warm smile, even if it looks worn. "Yes. With all the... troubles of late... Genosha, New York... it's been a little wearing for all of us. And then travel." It's a polite misdirection.

Scott Summers has posed:
"He had a large house about three miles from here, down the road, but I think he sold it years ago," explains Philip. Apparently, he vanished from Philip and Deborah's life just when Christopher and his family vanished after the crash. And here Emma can see Philip is not really sure when he lost sight of Essex. But he reconnected with the elder Summers just when Scott reappeared.

Scott nods, as if it was not very important. "Tomorrow we can talk at length about all this. I think we are too tired tonight," he leans back, smiles to Deborah as if approving her tea. Keeps his cool while he plans what he is going to say in the phone call he is doing to the school about three seconds after he is in his room alone.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex frowns, but grunts, letting it drop for the moment as he picks up his tea cup, quietly sipping from it. "Thanks for the tea, was a long flight..." He leans back in the loveseat, crossing his legs idly. "So, ah...how long have you been talking with Scott? How did you find out he was alright?"

Emma Frost has posed:
Quietly (of course, it's telepathy, it's not exactly noisy) Emma skims both Philip and Deborah at they chat with their grandsons. The revelation that Philip has fuzzy recall about when Sinister left their lives and then the convenient return when Scott came back into their lives garners a slight frown, but that's hidden by the teacup as she sips.

Scott Summers has posed:
Philip glances at Scott. "It was around... fall of 2011," says the old man. "He contacted with us by phone. I couldn't believe it at first." He looks at Alex, "we started looking for you immediately. But it was... I had no idea Nebraska's social services could be so incredibly incompetent. They made so many dumb mistakes it was impossible for me to find Scott after the plane crash."

Scott shakes his head. "No, it was deliberated. There was a criminal trying to keep Alex and me separated and insulated. We should talk about it tomorrow." Philip looks surprised, then curses softly, suddenly realizing so many odd events now make sense.

Alex Summers has posed:
    Alex looks a bit suprised that Scott is so blunt over it, but nods slightly. "...yeah. Us being split up, fostered out, separated...it was deliberate. Me being declared dead apparently when I was still alive." He sips from his tea quietly, then sets the cup down. "It's why I was suprised to hear from you, I thought...I thought you'd just abandoned us, that you didn't want to deal with us. I didn't know what happened, just that suddenly I was being fostered out."

Scott Summers has posed:
"We would never do that, Alex!" States Philip, while Deborah looks horrified. "W-who told you that? That is terrible!" Scott nods. Of course, he was told exactly the same kind of things, by the good Doctor Milbury, while he was in his orphanage. "We were lied to, and now it is unraveling. It is about time."

Scott finishes his tea. "We should get some sleep. We have been through a stressful week and we came here to rest, after all."

Alex Summers has posed:
    "What else was I supposed to think?" Alex says, no heat to his words. "I knew you existed. Me and Scott survived. But you never came for us. When I asked the orphanage people, they told me none of my family wanted to take us and that's why we were being fostered. What else was I supposed to think?" He frowns a bit, then sighs out. "Maybe...resting isn't a bad idea, yeah. It's been a long flight. A nap might do us good."

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma stands up. "Yes. I think these sorts of conversations are better had in the sunlight after a good rest." She leans down and over, kissing Alex lightly on the cheek. "What matters is everyone's here now."

Scott Summers has posed:
Alex knew they existed. Scott couldn't even remember until he was with Xavier and they did some investigation. But now he has to wonder if it was the amnesia after the accident or Sinister manipulating him. He always remembered Alex. But not his grandparents.

<<I think we are safe>>. Thinks Scott loudly. <<That purchase offer came before Essex last confrontation with the X-Men. He didn't even bother using a new alias. He no longer cares if we know. Maybe he even finds amusing we know.>>

It is also questionable if he was even here. As the elder Summers' memories might have been manipulated. More investigation is required, and maybe it would be better if they do it in New York.

"Come," he tells Alex and Emma. "I will show you the rooms." Separate rooms, but he is not going to tell anything if they decide to use just one. Deborah stands up as if she wants to go with them, but Scott chuckles and hugs her. "I know the way, grandma, don't worry. It is very late and you two also should get some sleep."

Alex Summers has posed:
    "Yeah, we can...we can talk more then." Alex says, hesistantly, offering Emma a hand as he follows his grandfather down the hall, smiling at Deborah as he heads past her. "That'll work." He pauses at the door, then unless Emma objects, he'll definitely stay with her in whatever room they end up in. Not leaving her alone at this point, knowing how hard Essex being nearby hit her.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma has rather... strict parents, so while the thought of them sleeping separately amuses her, it doesn't surprise her. But Alex is clear enough in his intention to not even play the game, so, she shares a room with him.

And her sleep is fitful.

Scott Summers has posed:
Scott doesn't expect to sleep much himself. But he is going to keep busy with phone calls and planning. It is not the first night he gets only a couple hours. He is young and can afford it.

It is not the first time Essex ruins one of his weekends. He should be used to it by now.