3313/Red Rooms and Rocket Engines

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Red Rooms and Rocket Engines
Date of Scene: 10 September 2020
Location: Labs - Titan's Tower
Synopsis: Valeria visits Nadia in the Titans Tower Labs. Space Travel and Super Spies are discussed and perhaps a bit of hope.
Cast of Characters: Nadia Pym-van Dyne, Valeria Richards

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
The Titans efforts in orbit against Warworld were all over the news and of course Nadia was among them. But after that she just sort of seemed to vanish and nobody had seen her for five days now, nobody outside of Titans Tower anyway.

That is until on the fifth day Valeria's phone receives a text message. Nadia: <<At the Titans Tower, want to see what I'm working on?>>

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria has been busy. No War World for her. No anything for her remotely approaching adventure. She can't even sneak off to Gotham for a date without her mother's evil eyed glare, so really, adventuring is //right// out. But she's been mostly locked in her own room, working on her current project that's been consuming all of her time... uh, that's not been spent on Instagram, or exchanging texts with the 'he's totally not my boyfriend'.


An invite to poke her head into Titans tower? That's usually something she can slip by her parents and get a day pass from the evil overlord eyes. The Titans lab isn't new to her, she's friends with Vic and has been in before to poke around. So, when she gets Nadia's text, she shoots back a quick <<Sure thing. An hour?>> and as soon as she gets the go ahead, she's changed from yoga pants and a tank top into her unstable molecule uniform, a slightly-too-large and well-worn leather jacket over it, and she's (once clearing it with the mom-warden) out the door and on the Hyperloop to Metropolis with a reminder to be back BEFORE curfew.


So she shows up at the big T and enters the Lobby, waiting to be buzzed up or escorted into the labs, like last time she was here.

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia is in the lab, where she has been for days. It is highly questionable if she has even slept, the large black bags under her eyes point to no. At least probably not more than a couple hours here and there when the coffee could no longer keep even her Red Room enhanced physiology going. Her hair is also a mess, but it seems she is changing clothes at least occasionally.

When her cellphone lights up signaling Valeria's reply, she quickly taps out a quick confirmation. <<Great. See you then.>> Before it is back to work on the thing that is currently taking up most of the lab's available free space.

That being a large scale new space propulsion system for the T-Jet, one capable of operating beyond Earth's atmosphere. Of course there's more to it than just that. The base design seems to be similar to an Ion Thruster, fuel-less, electric, efficient. But there seem to be several upgrades as well, some of which definitely came out of the Brainiac array work including the use of Pym Particles to boost the efficiency and output of energy to the engines. The whole thing is still in mid-assembly, but it is not hard to see where she is going with much of it.

"Please let her in and show her here." Nadia informs the Tower AI once the intercom pings letting her known of Valeria's arrival. She pulls off her work gloves and pours two mugs of some fresh coffee to greet her guest with.

Valeria Richards has posed:
Val slips into the lab, looking disappointed that Vic hadn't implemented her suggested security additions to the door, but when she sees Nadia her desire to make a comment about that fades. "Hey, are you feeling all right?" she asks. "You look... rough." She rifles in her purse and pulls out a small spritzer. "Moisturize, hydrate, and breathe," she says as she offers the spray of moisturizer. "Big project?"

Valeria glances at the propulsion system schematics on one of the screens. "Going somewhere?" she asks with a head tilt. No, she hasn't heard.

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia accepts the spritz of moisturizer and manages something resembling a smile for Valeria, "I'll be fine, this needs to get done though. You saw the news right? Donna, Terry, Vic, Cait. They were all lost in a collapsing wormhole after we forced Warworld into retreat. I need to get out there, to try and study what happened, find a way to bring them back." There is a look in her eyes like she is clearly obsessing over this, "Minutes, seconds could make a difference in helping them, or," and her expression falls for a moment, "maybe they're already dead. But I have to try."

She turns and gestures at the large experimental piece of propulsion technology. "So, what do you think? Oh, coffee." she reaches for two large mugs nearby on the work table and holds one out for Valeria.

Valeria Richards has posed:
"Who?" Really, the only person on that list Valeria knows is Vic. "Vic got sucked into a wormhole?" Now Valeria frowns. "Was it a temporal or physical wormhole? Are you sure it collapsed completely? Sometimes they will only collapse on one side, you know, and that's problematic but workable." She turns her attention to the propulsion system, her hand already absently reaching into her purse for the omnitool she keeps with her. She waves off the coffee, her attention more focused on the tech. "I'm assuming you did a full tachyon sweep as well as checking all the radiation levels?" Thats delivered absently as she begins poking at the engine.

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia just shakes her head, "It was a physical wormhole that Warworld used for long distance travel, but beyond that I don't know. That's why we need the new engines to get out there and do scans. It was beyond the lunar sphere because they were trying to ram Warworld with one of the alien dreadnoughts from its fleet, that had been captured. But the T-Jet can't get out there unless Supergirl wants to get in back and push. So I'm making these, so we can get out there and find out what happened and hopefully bring them back."

The second cup of coffee is set back on the worktable when Valeria waves it off, just another cup for Nadia to drink later if it doesn't wind up being consumed before Valeria leaves.

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria's phone makes a fwip! noise as a text comes in. She frowns, and shoots a quick reply before tucking her phone in her purse and studying the schematics more as she considers the alterations made and that she might advise. "Physical wormholes are interesting. Dad's traveled through them a time or two, he has some opinions. Not an ideal way to travel, but not the worst." She glances back at Nadia. "You are incorporating alien technologies into this drive? Are you sure that's wise?" She hrms. "Electric. I'd switch it over to a frictionless plasmatic..." There is a serious look of concentration on Val's face. "Oof. I really wish I could look at some of the data from home... let me see if he still has that where I can..." And her phone is back out again, and with a few gestures the screen pops up as a hardlight screen, which Valeria begins to start searching through the Fantastic Four database while she talks. "But besides wormholes and such, how are you, Nadia?" There is a sort of absent cheeriness to the question as she flips through data entries.

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
"Frictionless plasma, of course. I should have thought of that." she slaps her forehead before wandering over to the interactive whiteboard sized tablet display where she's been writing her schematics and equations, "I probably wouldn't lose too much work doing that." She makes a few notations and starts jotting out some quick calculations.

When Valeria brings up the alien technology, she gives a little shrug, "Yeah I'm cutting corners a bit with that, but after a few months with that tech, I think I have a reasonably good handle on it. Some of it is because I'm using technology we made that interfaces with it for power optimization and expansion, including the magnetically contained Pym Particle sub-atomic cascade reaction my father came up with. It's mostly about skirting energy input requirements as much as possible, so fuel can be cut out completely. One highly experimental innovation I'm also looking at would draw energy from the Microverse in the same way Pym Particles shunt mass."

The question about how she is doing herself though catches Nadia off guard and she falls quiet for a moment, the moment drags out into a pause as she is thinking about how to answer, eventually she sighs, "Not so good, honestly. That's the other reason I need to hurry and get this operational. The Red Room, the people I escaped from, they're trying to take me back. Apparently they have the State Department cooperating to try and extradite me back to Russia. They seem to be claiming I'm a confused runaway and that my mother never died and wants me returned to her..." She leans back against the worktable like the sheer weight of the situation is making it difficult to stand up.

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria scowls at that. "Godfather says you should come to Four Freedoms and if they come for you he will just send an army of Doombots," she says absently. "Really, Russia is no match for Latveria, and I asked him to intercede if need be. Vivian spoke to me."

Valeria purses her lips, answering a series of fwips! as more texts pop in quickly. "Not NOW, Jay," she mutters under her breath, then looks up from the screen. "I mean, have you considered just using dimensional rifting to pull them back? Walking dimensional subspace seems a lot more stable than risking alien technology doing something crazy, like overriding everything else in the system or autopiloting you a few hundred light-years away."

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia shakes her head, "We don't even know if they're in another dimension, their atoms could just be scattered across the cosmos, I mean I'm hoping, but first we need to figure out what happened. The last time I went through a dimensional rift I had to fight an unholy fusion of my father and Ultron. I don't even want to know how that came about, it was not cool." She almost likes talking about the situation with her friends, at least by comparison to dealing with the Red Room.

"It's not that simple," she sighs again. "Not if I ever want to have any kind of life. I don't think they'll try anything directly, at least not unless their indirect methods are thoroughly defeated. Indirect is their specialty. They know everything. They're telegraphing moves just to show me they know and they know that I know. Everything with them is lies, it's impossible to know what is the truth, are they lying about my mother being alive or were they lying when they said she died? It's one of the reasons I clung to Science so hard growing up, Scientific facts were the only truth that I had. They're already manipulating the Attorney General into opposing my citizenship case feeding him information he should have no way of knowing, they've already got the State Department cooperating with them, unless I want to live in a hole my entire life, I can't just run away... and I mean what if she really is alive..." That seems to be the part that is eating away at her the most, the mother she has only known in a picture, the mother thought lost forever, what if she could actually meet her?

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria tilts her head. "So why don't we just destroy this Red Room and be done with it? If they say your mother is alive, then get her out and be done with them." Val has a lot of her Godfathers penchant for swift, decisive, and potentially not exactly ethical action. "On what grounds are they opposing your citizenship? Your father is a citizen. You should have birthright citizenship if nothing else."

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia drinks some more of her coffee to try and drive away some of the stress, "Easier said than done, I'm sure SHIELD among others would love to, but none have yet succeeded or really even gotten close. First we would need to find them, they're not just the place I grew up, they're spread out across any number of covert facilities and they move around a lot if they think they've been discovered or compromised. I almost guarantee the facility I was raised in was moved not long after I escaped. Also they're just one aspect of Department X though which has its tendrils throughout the Russian government and other former Soviet states. It's..." she lets out a long sigh, "As much as I hate them, when it comes to espionage, assassination, manipulation, and operating from the shadows like phantoms, they are among the best there is at what they do and not presenting their enemies with clear targets to strike at. As for the opposition to my citizenship there are apparently clauses in the newer national security laws that allow it due to my lack of a birth certificate or any documentation and connection to a foreign espionage and assassinate cell as a national security threat. Information they were no doubt provided with by the Red Room."

Valeria Richards has posed:
Valeria wrinkles her nose. "Politics. God, I hate them. A bunch of stupid rules made by stupider people with even less forethought. If there's anything I can do to help, let me know." She's back to peering through the Fantastic Four's files on wormholes, alternative dimensions, and even temporal anomalies. "Oh, just thought of this, you want to recalibrate the deuterium manifold's flex to less than 0.0005%. I saw it's at 0.0045% and that's going to cause some instability if you end up in a wormhole yourself." That's delivered... really absently, actually, like she's mentioning how she takes her coffee.

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia pushes herself off the worktable where she has been leaning and wanders over to the whiteboard sized interactive screen with all of her schematics and calculations again. A stylus is produced from her pocket and she taps the screen a few times making the corrections. "Thanks, this is why it is always great to get a second set of eyes on things."

She pauses. "If something does happen, talk to Janet, Van Dyne." The surname is added after a moment for clarity. "She's like my.. mentor." Nadia chooses her words carefully, the last time anyone said step-mother it did not go over well. "Anyway I gave her a means to hopefully find me if I go missing."

Valeria Richards has posed:
Val nods absently. "I will." She flings open the hardlight screen to make it larger, half the size of a classroom chalkboard, and points to a few things. "So, here's Dad's data on non-temporal wormholes. The //good// news is it's reaaaaally unlikely they are dead. I mean, not impossible? But unlikely. Basically, wormholes collapse in one of three ways..." and she pulls up some drafted visual videos.

"So, the first is a one-end collapse? If that's the case, then they basically got spat out the other side. Should be fine, maybe just a little lost but that's... you know." Like being lost in space is no big deal. The Fantastic Four are //weird//, did we mention this? "That's the MOST likely event. Second..." a new video, "It's called a 'pocket collapse' and it basically is both sides collapse at once, which gets kiiiiinda hinky," technical term!!!, "because it either creates or forces the trapped items into a pocket dimension... Dad isn't really cleeeeear on if it's a new one or a forced one but..."

And the third video. "Ugh, so least likely is a full collapse, which basically returns everything inside the wormhole collapse to base atoms."

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
Nadia turns her attention to the screen and follows along as Valeria explains more about wormhole collapse with visual aids, the visual aids are really helpful. "So there is a fairly good chance they may have survived, either in deep space or trapped in a pocket dimension.." She doesn't really want to think about the third possibility, though it is definitely on her mind. "Once these engines are complete it is starting to sound like we are going to need something FTL-capable as well if we need to go into deep space after them." She purses her lips in thought of how to do it. "Maybe I could apply Pym Particles directly to energy fields or even space-time itself. With all of these alien invasions Earth really needs to be developing starships."

Valeria Richards has posed:
"Eh, you'd trust //people// with space travel? God, Earth would be embroiled in a hundred interstellar wars the first week. Hard pass." Val rolls her eyes. Arrogance, casual dismissiveness, and a hint of self-centeredness? That's entirely the package she is. "And space is very, very big. If you don't know where you're going, you're just going to end up anywhere but where you need to be." She hrms consideringly. "No, I think your sublight ship is a better idea, for now. Best bet will be pulling the data and seeing if you can reopen the same wormhole and either slide through it, or pluck them out of it. No offense, but you //are// surrounded by idiots. Do you really want to see them as the face of Earth to new and interesting civilizations, boldly going where no one has gone before because they really shouldn't be going there?"

Nadia Pym-van Dyne has posed:
There is a pause as Nadia stops to consider this. Valeria isn't really wrong about the Titans being a bit rough around the edges at times. In the end she shrugs though, "Maybe not trust people, though I kind of want to make one anyway because space is really cool. It would be a big project though and probably something that will have to wait until after all of this has been dealt with regardless. You're right, for now I just need to get these engines done." Though it's clear her mind is already dreaming about building a starship in the future, if she can just get her friends back and deal with that cell of super spies and assassins that's after her.