5018/Lara and Sebastian's Lounge Raiding Adventure

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Lara and Sebastian's Lounge Raiding Adventure
Date of Scene: 04 February 2021
Location: Lily Anne's Lounge - Hellfire Club
Synopsis: Lara and Shaw get to know one another.
Cast of Characters: Lara Croft, Sebastian Shaw

Lara Croft has posed:
Getting out of one's own head space can be a nice way to refresh your work when you return to it later.

This one reason Lara has come to the lounge at the HFC tonight. It helps refresh her thoughts when she gets to immerse herself in to something rather different to what she's typically used to.

She's trying to find ways to improve, after all! (Her therapist asked her to do so.)

Here and now, Lara is at the bar. She'd worked at home the past several days and finally decided to step away from her work. Having settled in at the bar only a few moments ago, the young woman is dressed in a black form-fit sweater that leads down to her belted dark grey trousers. Her hair is loose around her shoulders and her eyes are down upon the bar in front of her, where she's staring at her phone with a fresh drink resting beside it.

Even 'out' she's still looking at things related to her work on her phone... work addicts are like that, after all.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian Shaw seems to be a similar work addict. He is talking into his phone at the end of the bar, "Yes. Yes. Right. The shipment will be coming in tomorrow night at around midnight. Make sure they are there Ms. Fox. Goodnight." He then taps the button on his phone, and off it goes. It is a somewhat slow night at the bar -- Wednesdays are not REALLY known for raucous parties, even at the HFC -- and he spots Lara a ways down the bar.

The man considers for a few moments, perhaps trying to place her face, and then smiles as the recognition comes. He walks down the bar, pocketing his phone as he goes, and greets her, "Now, now, all work and no play, makes Ms. Croft a dull girl." Perhaps, slightly teasing her? Maybe?

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara had seen the man down at the end of the bar. Everyone knew who he was here, or likely should at the very least. He'd been busy on that phone call, however, so she'd looked away and just focused on her own happenings.

Drinking that drink, and swiping along on what's on her phone.

She's got her drink in her left hand when he approaches as well, and after a sip and hearing his voice, Lara casts her eyes up to look at him, and then away to set her drink down. With a soft smile she looks back at him then and rests her hands at the edge of the bar in front of her.

"Mister Shaw." She says, voice calm and pleasant. HIs quote is a famous one, even though she's never seen that film (she hasn't seen very many movies at all), she still knows its origin.

Lara laughs softly at it too. "Yes, well. Some might say I started dull to begin with." She quips back at him. "It is good to see you though, things seem to be well here, I hope?" The British woman asks, giving a glance around them.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
The fellow anglophone seems to ease Shaw somewhat, take away some of his usual intensity. He grins at the woman's response, eyes perhaps flitting over her for just a moment. Obvious enough to catch, but not lingering long enough to be a leer. "Oh, I don't know who could have said that about you Ms. Croft. It seems I can hardly pick up a newspaper without hearing of some new discovery you've made." He settles into a seat next to her, and then lifts his hand to order a drink, "Whiskey sour," he says simply to the bartender.

He turns his attention back to Lara and adds, "Getting better. I have been in Tokyo for the last few months. Just back a few days ago, and the club was feeling listless...but..I've made some new hires, have some plans for a couple of events I should be announcing soon...we might keep this ship afloat for another few weeks," he jokes, about the absurdly profitible Club that he runs.

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara certainly wasn't unaccustomed to people looking her over, with the vast majority of those who do it being far more obvious about it too. She just shows a slight smile then before raising her right hand up to prop her chin up on the soft part of her palm, with her elbow on the edge of the bar.

"Tokyo is a wonderful city." She replies to him after he compliments her on her exploits, which in the past year have... made a lot of headlines, for good and for ill. "I'll admit that I've gotten more accustomed to coming here to unwind, as well." Lara continues, shifting her stare from him toward the bar before them, then back to him again.

"When I originally got the invitation to come here, I wasn't sure how often I'd ever actually do so, but... sometimes surprises do happen. I'm glad to hear things are going well, and if I fit any of these upcoming events, do let me know." She adds another light smile then at the end.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Tokyo was quite spectacular. Their New Year's Celebration rivaled Times Square if you ask me." Shaw replies as his drink arrives. He takes a sip of it, and then nods, "Yeah, that's what has been missing this evening."

He relaxes back into his chair, "And, I'm glad to hear this is a regular stop for you. I hope most of our other members behave themselves when they see you?" he asks, with a wink, before he adds, "One of the events is going to be a Mardi Gras themed party...perhaps open to the public. We have not quite decided on that yet. I think we should perhaps do some screening of who gets in here, call me a stuffy traditionalist if you will. And the other..well...Ms. Croft, please don't take offense when I say this but, there's no event at the Hellfire Club that would not be improved by a beauty such as yourself." His eyes are locked into hers as he says that, not on the more obvious assets she has.

Lara Croft has posed:
"I would believe that, quite so." Lara says with regard to New Years Eve in Tokyo. She's well aware of how festive and lively that city gets for such things. She smiles at his enjoyment of the drink and raises her own up to offer a casual 'cheers' gesture for him. She seems to be drinking vodka and cranberry, based on the ice and red juice in her glass.

Another sip is taken from it by the British Nobility, and when she sets her glass down she hears the rest of his comments, which make her laugh softly. At first she just nods her head two vague times. "Everyone here is nothing but lovely toward me. It's been part of the draw to come back, as I've felt little pressure or negativity here." The last half of what he says has her smiling more openly then.

"That's sweet of you to say." She tells him, showing him the smile directly with eye contact before she looks away again. "Mardi Gras is not a celebration I've participated in before. I've yet to make my way to that part of the States, though it is on my list of places I'd like to visit. The history there is rather impressive for such a relatively young country."

She looks back to him then and lays her hands together on the bar in front of her drink. "I'll do my best to clear my schedule for that night." She adds. "Stuffy traditionalist, or a wise businessman. The latter is probably preferred, I would wager." She states lastly, with a hint of a grin for him.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"I am glad of it," is a bit of an odd eighteenth century construction that doesn't really get said anymore, but Shaw says it in response to how Lara feels at the club. Despite it's...darker aspects, it seems to still attract good hearted people like Lara. He takes another long sip of his drink, and lets his eye wander over the establishment and back to his companion again.

"Mardi Gras is an...experience. I have only been once, in New Orleans, and it was..a night a place like the Hellfire should celebrate. The world turned upside down for one evening. Convention thrown to the wind. And, beauty on display one last time before the last stretch of winter." He says, grinning at Lara, "You'd be a stunning attendee Lady Croft."

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara is quick to smile again at his compliment to her there at the end. "I'll have to do my research on that celebration. Now you've peaked my interest in it." She replies with a small smile still present.

"I would say that the Day of the Dead has likely held my interest as my favorite celebration, and having experienced it in Mexico City first hand, as well as in Janitzio... it will be hard to top, I should think." She raises her glass up to her lips for another sip, before lowering it and smiling once more.

"However, I've been in New York city for exactly one year now, as a resident, and I've come to see that the revelry in this city is rather impressive all it's own. New Yorkers seem eager to find reasons to 'party' as it were. I wasn't in the States for New Years, sadly, but I was lucky enough to be here for a great deal of Christmas, and celebrated my first American Thanksgiving with some friends. But... I imagine Mardi Gras is rather, unique, from those."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian Shaw gives his hand a bit of a wave at Lara's assessment. "Yes, and no. There are always people looking to party in the city. I will give it that. But...it's hard to properly do Mardi Gras in New York City. There'd be no flashing whatsoever, and then, where would we be?" he asks with a wink.

"I have never been to a Dia de los Muerte celebration, though I have heard it is quite an event. Though...different, I suspect from Mardi Gras. It's..more...celebration of those who have passed. Mardi Gras is, traditionally, get all your sinning done before Lent." Shaw says, before he adds, "It will be an experience, I can promise that." He then asks, "Where were you for New Years? London?"

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara laughs lightly at the part about flashing, which has her soon nodding vaguely a pair of times toward him. "Yes. I have heard of that part of the celebrating. Though I imagine just about everyone in the world has heard of that part. Beads and all." She jokes with a faints smirk at herself. She glances at the artender as he delivers her a fresh drink, and offers him a quick smile and a quiet 'thank you' for his dutiful efforts to monitor her drink levels.

When she looks back to Shaw, she's raising the fresh up for a sip. "I was here, mmm... a few days before it? In this very Club, but, that following morning I took a plane to follow up on some leads I've been researching, related to... well. It's a bit unclear, yet still. Ultimately I was in the Himalayas for a couple weeks, before returning here to the States with what meager findings I'd recovered."

She shakes her head side to side. "I hate to bore you with Archaeology stories, however." She seems reluctant to talk about her work, as though she's sure others won't find it at all interesting!

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"I am going to tell you a secret Lady Croft: people enjoy stories about archaeology. Men have been doing it for centuries to try and woo women, to...I suspect..great success. So, if you wish to talk about it, I am more than eager to listen. Doubly so if you're trying to woo me." Shaw says, before getting his own drink refilled.

"I consider myself a man of culture, and refinement, but I must sadly admit that I am completely lost when it comes to anything in Asia outside of Tokyo or Hong Kong. Why the Himalayas? What exactly is there to dig up in a mountain? My understanding is most of your discoveries are done in...places with a bit more topsoil." Shaw adds as he settles in to listen to Lara speak.

Lara Croft has posed:
Some part of Lara knows precisely what he's saying, but she grew up immersed in the world of Archaeology, and it did have mixed results for her as an only child, with no real friends to speak of her age until she was in college, and now only a year and change post-College she seems to be still still holding on to some parts of that insecurity.

She does, grin at his response, and dip her head in a singular nod. "Fair enough." She tells him. "It certainly worked for my father on my mother, apparently." She jokes back at him.

"Well then. Lets see..." Lara turns to her phone and spends a few seconds searching on it with finger swipes. "I assume since you're not overly familiar with Asian history-- that was my focus in college, mind you --that you've not heard of Dropa Stones."

When Lara looks back at him, she has a picture of a Dropa Stone pulled up on her phone. It looks like a small jade disc with a hole in the middle. But a closer look will show designs on the surface of the jade, intricate and beautiful.

"These are fairly well known items, however. But they come with a lot of ... mysterious tales." Lara is a bit tipsy after one and a half drinks, and she leans toward him to whisper at him. "Most of it is all quite fake. Though as it turns out... some of the stories have truth to them after all. And that's where I've come in, and what had lead me to the mountains in-question."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian Shaw leans in closer to Lara as well to take a look at her phone, and in doing so, maybe his hand missed the bar, but now it is on her knee for a few moments before he realizes it, "Oh, sorry..." he says, though he is slow to remove it.

He grins just a little bit at the commentary about the stones, "I have not heard of these, no. And..they look...I mean up close they look very intricate, but I wouldn't know them from any other rock on the ground." He takes a sip of his drink, before he asks, "Which stories are turning out to be true? And, is this a sort of...collect them all and see what happens? Do only some of them have some sort of mystical power?"

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara doesn't seem to regard the touch, doesn't really react to it much as she just assumed he was bracing himself from leaning too far over. Plus, she's lost in her story now for him. She affords him a small smile, then continues as she swipes to show another shot of two of the Dropa Stones side by side now.

"Most of them?" She starts again, looking back at him and shaking her head. "Worthless, by all rights. Fakes. Probably ninety percent of them, or more. But a lead lead to a handful that upon greater inspection, dated back far older than they had any right to be, and... as things go, when the yarn was tugged, the sweater begun to come apart on the mystery."

Another finger swipe and she points at a jade disc sitting beside a golden sphere the size of a softball. "This was the key. My research lead me to these things. They're called 'Míngxing zhinán' or, Star Guides. When one of the true Dropa are placed inside the guide, and the guide is hung properly inside a dark location, then... the disc becomes a visual map of the world. It took me, quite some time to decode the first map, but the end result was pointing me toward the Himalayas."

She looks back over at him and smiles quickly. "Thus... I set out, to see what I would find."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian Shaw leaves his hand there then since it seems to be acceptable to her. He listens intently to the story she is weaving. "I see...fascinating. Though, I suspect from what you mentioned earlier that the expedition to the Himalayas was not a success?" As he asks this, he considers for a few more moments, and then leans back in to look at the golden ball.

He posits, "Could it be possible that, well...in an active mountain range like that, whatever you were looking for had been...wiped off the map in the intervening years between the creation of this ball and the present day?"

Lara Croft has posed:
Lara listens and looks from her phone back toward him to show a little smile, along with a single nod to his last question. "That is entirely possible. As much as I wish I was always the first to a location, the first to see it since those who built it roamed within it... that's just not always the case. It usually isn't, in fact. Thus the term 'raiders' would hold no bearing in Archaeology. But, no, in reality most places thought lost to time have already been found again, combed over, and looted beyond recognition."

She shows a light smirk then, and places her phone back down beside her drink, reaching for the glass once more with the same hand. "As for this? Well, I found more leads. More strings to pull on, so to speak, so I am still working on it, and the other stones that I know are real. One is pointing me toward South America, for instance, but I've more planning, and digging, before I'll set off for that sight."

She then indulges her drink with another sip before looking back to him. "And mixing in visits to your fine Club in between such flights of fancy." The Briton adds with another pleasant smile.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Well, please do keep coming back. I want to hear the rest of your tale, and what you find. Perhaps we will put on an exposition for you here if you'd like," Shaw says, straightening up slightly, hand still on her knee, thumb idly stroking it.

"What do you think they are? That they represent? It seems very advanced of whoever created them to set up a map with clues to follow. Is this a pathway to something...not of this world?" He ventures, raising an eyebrow at THAT slightly drunken revelation.

Lara Croft has posed:
There's certainly some displayed level of trust shown from the young woman, but she's also having a nice night out, or trying to, so she doesn't mind the hand so it seems.

At his offer of an expedition from the Club, she smiles gratefully toward him. "One reason I took the job to work for SHIELD, was the ... extension it offered me to letting me go places that might otherwise be harder for me to reach, singularly on my own. It's been a great boon, because of that. Especially since I'm not delving in to any of my family's legacy to further my own career." Her family's wealth sits untouched in various banks and holdings back in Britain, something else fairly well known about Lady Croft if one knows their information on her.

"And, well, as for what I think they are?" She slowly shakes her head and glances away from him. "We know aliens exist, so at this stage of our world... that seems like a possibility, even if we don't know how far back alien interactions with Earth reach... this could change a few theories on that, should it head in that direction."

She looks back at him and smiles again. "But, we'll see, and yes. I'll keep you informed as I learn more."