564/The (Not So) Public House

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The (Not So) Public House
Date of Scene: 16 March 2020
Location: The Public House, The Hellfire Club, NYC
Synopsis: Shaw meets with Lorna and makes her and offer she can't refuse; Maxima discovers the HFC
Cast of Characters: Emma Frost, Jack Ryder, Sebastian Shaw, Lorna Dane, Maxima, Selina Kyle, Alton Schmidt

Emma Frost has posed:
The Public House is a rather hoity toity bar on the twelfth floor of the Hellfire Club building in midtown Manhattan, and, besides the VIP Lounge itself, one of the more likely places to find certain members of the Hellfire Club when they are feeling... sociable. Which is more frequently than not, seeing as the Hellfire is a social club, after all.

A long, mahoghany bar stretches the length of the only semi-lit room. Besides seating at the bar itself, several hunter green and crimson red leather seated booths line the wall opposite, as well as a scattering of tables between the bar and the booths. At the far end of the room a small dais with a single, retro looking but extremely pricey microphone on a stand sits, waiting... or perhaps a singer, tonight? Or, perhaps a speech? It could go either way, truthfully. And of course, nearest the dais is a large, carved table with a dozen chairs, where the true power in the Hellfire Club has first dibs.

At that large table, Emma Frost, CEO of Frost International and Board Member in good standing of the Hellfire Club, sits demurely, elegant legs crossed as she relaxes in her red leather padded seat. She is garbed in a short glimmering white dress with a Mandarin collar, and of course, her favorite white and crystal high heels. A gin and tonic sits in front of her, only somewhat sipped at; as well as a plate of hor d'oevres that have barely been touched. She sits at the right hand of Sebastian Shaw, the owner of the club here in New York, who is at the head of the table. The other side head of the table sits empty, but with a drink in front of the seat anyway, as if reserving a place.

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder probably isn't the sort usually invited or even allowed at these sorts of things. He's only modestly wealthy, after all, despite his rather notorious sort of fame. But he does have a high public profile and he's curious enough to poke his head in. Anything to distract him from the dreams, the late night sweats, the scratches gouged into his walls with claws that were his and weren't. Anything to keep the Creeper at bay, if only for a little while.

He's wearing a suit, at least, the tie loosened but still presentable at the basic level. Tom Ford, albeit second hand, picked off a discount rack at one of those strip malls where designer outfits go to die. He has a glass of whiskey in hand, ice piled within, cattycornered cubes resting against one another like a precarious pillar. He takes a sip and looks around. He tries to pretend the bags under his eyes aren't there. He's not sure when he last slept. Blackouts will do that to you.

He has a vape pen idly twiddled in his other hand, taking a drag and pluming a cloud of vapor around him. Black cherry scented, at least, as he watches the idle and not-so-idle rich come to play. He wondered how many of them were secret superheroes. And how many of them were secret scum.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
By comparison to the lady at his right hand, Sebastian Shaw is the proverbial man in black this evening, though he's made the one small concession to informality by divesting with his necktie and leaving his collar open and jacket unfastened, apparently as "done with work" for the evening as someone in his position ever manages to get. A tumbler of dark liquor sits in front of him, a single ball of ice within, which he occasional gives a bit of a swirl before taking a sip. He seems in a pleasant mood, though that's hardly unusual when he's out and about in the club. He occasionally leans over and murmurs something or another to Emma. From the looks of it it seems to be typical chit-chat or observations, with most of it eliciting a smile, wry grin, or laugh from Emma, often shared with Sebastian. They look like they're more or less enjoying themselves, even with the occasional brief interruption from one or the other of their assistants keeping them informed of necessary things, usually requiring no more than a nod of acknowledgement or a brief, whispered command to send them back to their unobtrusive positions nearby.

All-in-all, Shaw looks like he owns the place, and not only because he actually does.

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna Dane was not a usual or regular visitor of the club. In fact, she barely even knew that it existed. The green haired mutant had been occupied, until recently, in being heir to the throne of Genosha. But with the attack and its destruction, she had been thrust into a much higher profile role: Queen. As the saying goes, the King is dead, long live the King. With Magneto's death so passed the crown.

Endless diplomatic meetings stretched out before her. Wakanda, Latveria, were the two front runners in terms of other monarchical countries to reach out with offers of aid. But that didn't rule out the offers of 'help' and 'aid' from various corporations and charities that had sprung up either.

So the invitation to the club was considered with the rest. Another place to go and hopefully make connections to aid her people. Thus Lorna went.

The young woman was tall and pale, her features carrying a shadow of the horrors she had seen. Added on with smears of smokey makeup that had been attempted. Her once long green hair was shorn into a short bob, and messy bangs. And she wore a dress of solid black. A simple thing, with no jewelry or other additions. It near greecian in style, and pleating, with a scoop neck design and pinched in at the shoulders. She wore a pair of heels, and seemed unbothered with how precarious she was perched in thin heels.

She paused in the entry-way, searching the room warily and uneasily. Unsure exactly why she'd bothered to come now that she was there.

Maxima has posed:
For the most part, Maxima doesn't have the wealth as far as anyone knows or even the standing to be a part of the HFC. She at least has the look. Noting what people were wearing upon entering this club, simply stepped out of sight, made a gesture and she was instantly dressed in what appears to be a pair of long black dress pants with black heels, three inches, underneath. Her top is a white dress shirt covered by a black vest and a black jacket over it, left open with a slight ruffling of white coming out of the sleeves and just barely covering her hand. Her hair is left free to fall about her shoulders and down her back.

Standing, with heels, at now 6'5", she towers above most everyone in the place. She takes a pause at the entrance, both to observe the crowd a moment and also in a way to draw attention before she continues onward into the bar, casually looking to the bar to request a drink before she looks over to the large table where Emma and Shaw are, considering them briefly before she looks back to the bartender to await her drink.

Selina Kyle has posed:
There are not too many occasions that get Selina Kyle out of Gotham City and into other places. While there are...certain things that get her attention, they are not the sort of business others would know of, nor are they things she would share with anyone else.

However, the Hellfire Club has proven to be an interesting source of information for her when it comes to keeping tabs on some of the wealthy, the elite. Getting in was not much trouble for someone with the resources she has access to, and her socialite side fit in perfectly for the schmoozing that goes on away from whatever hidden matters take place within the building's walls, things the general public is not privy to.

This evening finds her venturing outside her usual haunts, dressed smartly and elegantly in a black evening gown with black pumps to match. Fine jewelry lines her neck, pierces her ears, and rests at her wrists. Upon closer inspection, the earrings reveal to be small diamonds cut into the shape of cats. In hand is a glass of something pearlesque. Perhaps a White Russian. Maybe, just plain milk.

She lingers by the bar, surveying the room once again, taking note of anyone familiar and especially anyone not.

Emma Frost has posed:
"--supposedly from the future," Emma says quietly to Shaw, before taking a sip of her G&T. "Quite interesting, really. I think Johnny might be getting involved as far as his other problems go. Another evening, another connection made for the club's benefit." She lifts her glass, in something between cheers and a mockery thereof. "I'll have to talk to Lex I think in the morning about--" as she glances across the room, she spots Lorna, and makes a small noise. "Ah. She did respond to your invitation, Sebastian, it seems." She lifts a brow, as if making a silent question to him.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian listens intently to whatever it is Emma is filling him in on, his icy-blue eyes occasionally sweeping the room, keeping his own track of some of the comings and goings. There's a flicker of curiousity at the statuesque redhead...that's someone he doesn't recognize. A bit of surprise at Selina's presence...she hasn't been about for a while. But it's Lorna whom he fixes that gaze on when he spots that distinctive emerald-hued hair. He gives Emma a brief, curt nod, and rises from his seat, moving over to where Lorna stands and inclining his head respectfully, "Your Majesty...I'm honored you accepted my invitation, and I would be doubly so if you would join us for some refreshment." He gestures towards the large table, now occupied only by Emma herself.

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna looked about ready to turn and leave. She didn't know anyone particularly in the club, and much less felt as if she was going to mess everything up with her presence. Still, as Sebastian approached she paused in her hesitant turn, and waited until he closed the distance to a more polite conversational level. The green haired woman glanced once around the room, she didn't know anyone else, and settled her gaze back upon Sebastian insead. She offered a slight smile and inclined her head back. A polite nod.

"Thank you, I must admit I haven't been here before and found your building fascinating.." She murmured, moving to follow him toward the table he directed her toward. Her gaze swinging toward Emma curiously, as she approached.

Emma would doubtlessly pick up on the young Queen's nervousness, and the mental fragility there. Lorna had survived the fall of Genosha herself, and those scars went deep in her mind's eye.

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder recognizes Selina at least, pushing up from his seat and sidling up near to his fellow Gothamite, "Expatriates unite," he says, raising his glass and taking a long drink of liquor before setting it on the bar, "Two fingers, no more no less," he says to the attendant.

"Gotham's not so far away, but still - a little out of your usual territory. Looking to expand your profile? This is the place for the idle rich. And the powerful, it seems,' he says, nodding in the direction of Lorna Dane. "The Princess emerges, sipping on champagne with her country still in ashes. Typical," he says.

He just assumes Selina knows who he is because most people in Gotham do. He's been going on foul-mouthed tirades in the city's various media for nearly a decade, after all.

Maxima has posed:
Turning her gaze back around as her drink arrives, Maxima looks over at Shaw as he approaches Lorna. She knew who she was. She had seen enough of the planet's news and the like. She looked over at the table again where Emma is sitting before she simply takes a sip of her drink and sighs a little. To some, it might seem she's pleased with the drink but in reality, she's sad that this will do nothing for her. All the same, she pushes away from the bar and starts toward the table.

She doesn't hesitate to step up to the large table and casually places her drink upon it and looks to Emma with a smile, "I assume this is the table for those that are the most important here, yes?" She looks over toward Shaw briefly and then back to Emma.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma looks up... and up... at Maxima, an amused look on her face. "In a manner of speaking," she replies. "I'm not sure who you are," she says, "but you seem to be sure you belong here... and generally speaking, that usually indicates one does. Please, join me. Well, us, it seems."

Selina Kyle has posed:
Selina Kyle is already watching Ryder by the time he gets close enough to her to..well, launch into conversation without introducing himself.

She remains casually seated, an initially patient look on her face. Oh, she recognizes him all right, just the same as he recognizes her. "It's a social club, and I'm a social person," she rather purrs, but there is a bit of claw behind the words that follow after she's listened to the man and glanced toward Lorna Dane, now closer to Shaw, who she spotted looking her way, and Frost.

"Why, Ryder, I've never known you to be guarded with your opinions based on what I've heard. Perhaps she's here looking for some sort of backing for a fundraiser? Why don't you go ask her yourself, if you're so interested to find out?" she puts forth as a suggestion. "I'd be so very curious to see how she reacted."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Shaw speaks as he and Lorna cross the room back to the table. "My deepest condolences for all you and your people have suffered. I did not know your father well, but on the few occasions I had to interact with him he was a remarkable man."

As the arrive at the table, Shaw looks towards Emma, then to Maxima, "A new friend, Emma?" He studies Maxima curiously, then looks to Lorna, "I had imagined this would be a more private conversation, but the choice is yours, Your Majesty." A look back to Maxima, "Though I do think introductions may be in order."

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder snorts and shakes his head to Selina, "No thanks. I imagine I'd get force-choked like I'd just doubted Vader. That's a movie reference, I know you richie riches don't usual mingle much with the commoners enough to go to movie theaters," he says. He gets his fresh drink and throws it back, perhaps a bit too eagerly. Even by his own standards of conspicuous consumption, Jack Ryder seems to be a bit more indulgent than usual.

"Sebastian Shaw, huh? Not the charitable type, from what I hear, outside of the tax breaks. Kind of a ruthless rep. If he's offering support, you can bet there are solid steel strings attached," he says, taking another drag on his vape and letting it plume out of his nostrils like a steaming bull.

"Always neat coming to these sort of things, watching the rich folks sniff one another's butts like alleycats."

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna pursed her lips together briefly at the polite condolences, and bit back anything further. After all, it was what she'd heard many a time. 'So sorry', on repeat. But Shaw's words on having met her father before earned a slight lifting of her eyebrows as she settled into the empty seat that was clearly intended for her at this point. "Thank you. Very few people in the States would share your opinions about my father.." She mused, "I would like to hear how you managed to form such an opinion though.." She trailed off as she glanced at Maxima, her head tilting to the side as her focus shifted between Emma, and Shaw in turn.

"I would very much like introductions all around, if you would be so kind.." She barely restrained herself from shifting in her seat.

Selina Kyle has posed:
Selina Kyle smiles, but there is venom behind it. "It's easy to be bold and sound tough from the safety of a studio, isn't it?" There's no doubt she's picked out Maxima near the others at the table. Any woman over six feet tall is difficult to miss.

"But, I suppose I'd watch what I said around someone like her as well. That doesn't mean someone like me is interested in the passive-aggressive act, however." Her expression toward him turns..bored rapidly. "I have no idea what she is actually here for. It looks like it's between them." She indicates the two high-up Hellfire representatives seated at the table with her glass, which she takes a sip from. Closer inspection reveals it is most certainly milk.

The alleycat comment earns Jack no more than a mildly annoyed look, punctuated by a deliberate wave of the hand as he exhales the remnants of his vaping. Then, Selina takes note of how Emma and Sebastian interact with each other along with the guests closest to them.

Maxima has posed:
A smile at Emma and then Maxima shrugs, "It's right where I belong." She settles into a seat and then crosses a leg as she does. She glances over to her before looking to Emma, "Many here have taken to calling me Max." She nods her head, "I like it in many ways." She states simply and nods her haed, "Though, I am curious who you two are." She then looks around and gestures, "This Hellfire Club interests me." She looks then to Lorna and frowns slightly, "I have heard of you though. I  did not enjoyhearing about what happened to your people. It is a sad thing when such a thing happens and I assure you, if I find out who was responsible...they will regret it."

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma smiles at Maxima, and rises to her feet respectfully until Lorna takes her seat. "Emma Frost, Frost International." She pauses a for a moment. "We primarily are an aerospace corporation, though we have several subsidiaries with other... interests. I'm pleased to make your acquaintance, your majesty. My sincere condolences from my company and family to yours and your people on your loss. I cannot imagine how you must feel." She doesn't actually have to imagine. She can pretty much read Lorna's grief and loss loud and clear. "And likewise, I am pleased to meet you, Max." She glances to Shaw, sharing a quick thought.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Well Max, you certainly seem to have the attitude for the Hellfire Club right." Sebastian seems genuinely amused, though the expression shifts towards curious at her vow of retribution against those that attacked Genosha. "Sebastian Shaw, CEO and Chief shareholder of Shaw Industries." Following Emma's example, he adds, "Our primary interests lie in fuel, energy, and heavy industrial machinery, and as Emma puts it...subsidiaries with several other smaller interests." He smiles almost warmly, "And I also have the pleasure of serving as the Chairman of the Board for the Hellfire Club, along with being the owner of this building."

He gives a respectful nod to Maxima, then turns his attention back to Lorna.

"It would be a lie to say your father was anything but controversial, but I did have the pleasure of speaking with him at length on a few occasions. He was a VIP member here in good standing. We welcome all manner of viewpoints here, and your father was a man of great vision, and a passion for pursuing it. These are the type of things we value among our VIPs, and in particular our board members." Shaw seems...absolutely sincere in this. There's even a bit of fire in his own eyes as he speaks the words.

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder rolls his tongue in his mouth, "People wonder why the world stays fucked up and what you just said is part of the reason. Yeah, I probably wouldn't shoot my mouth off at someone who could probably pull my bones out through my nose with her mind. Kind of an unfair advantage. It usually is, when you deal with powerful people, whether they got supergenes or they're just rich and influential. Either way, it's keep your mouth shut, don't speak up or you'll get punished, one way or another," he says. "It ain't easy to be bold and tough in my studio. I get plenty of pushback and I always let 'em say whatever they want. I never censor anybody and I admit when I'm wrong. Which ain't that often, but still," he says.

He takes a seat and finishes his drink, setting it aside. There's a moment there, something in his eyes, bloodshot already, like something blooms in them, red spreading just a bit beyond the confines of the veins., "Passive aggressive," he mutters, as if musing to himself.

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna glanced between the trio at her table, and she reached out to pick up the glass of white wine set out in front of her. She was assuming it was meant for her, after all she'd had an invite and been ushered over to the table. It wasn't too much to assume. Either way, she wanted it, and she carefully sipped at it. Even while her stomach twisted sickeningly at Maxima's words. She pursed her lips, feeling overwhelmed slightly.

Perhaps it was too soon for her to be out in public without someone else to accompany her.

Emma would pick up far more than grief, but a splintered mindscape. One that constantly flashed in and out of the hellish nightmares of Genosha's destruction.

A soft exhale followed, "I appreciate the sentiment.. ah, Max." She set the wine glass down and her focus shifted back to Shaw.

"My father was a very determined man. And he was willing to do anything for the good of his people." She murmured softly, her gaze dropping to the table.

Maxima has posed:
A frown comes to Maxima's lips as she notes Lorna's reaction. She was not weak enough to be effected by other's emotions but she could feel them. She knew that this woman was having a rough time of it. She looks briefly over to Emma, eyeing her a moment before looking to Shaw and nodding, "It is good to meet you both." She states simply, though she does pause a moment.

Slowly as she sips her drink, her eyes go out into the crowd and fall upon Jack and Selina. Did she hear them? It's unclear but she does eye the pair a moment before she looks back then to the former Princess made Queen, "It is not just sentiment." She nods her head before she looks back to Emma, "So, tell me more of your Hellfire Club."

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma frowns, uncrossing her legs and leaning forward a bit. Discreetly, she gestures towards one of the nearby waitstaff, who quickly brings Lorna a glass of ice water to accompany her wine, as well as a crisp clean handkerchief. In case.

"I did not have the opporotunity to meet your father," Emma says simply, "but my father knew him as well when he served on the board. Father spoke... well... of his personal strength and determination, that is for sure. But enough of that, Ms. Dane. I believe Sebastian has an offer for you and your people."

Selina Kyle has posed:
Selina Kyle swirls her drink around, as if it was alcoholic. "Tell me, Jack," she begins, sounding almost friendly. Almost. "What would you call it when you are comfortable saying something to one person, when saying it to the person you're actually talking about might end up with you getting punched or worse? Smart? You might see it that way."

There is a cold expression she now rounds on Ryder with. "There's no harm in speaking up. Speaking up while being an asshole about it is a good way to end up punished, yes. This might be why I don't listen to your talk show very often. And it looks like you should ease up on the drinks." She must have caught whatever that was in his eyes. "So be careful, and I mean this in the most sincere way possible when I say watch what you say to others around here. You might like to play up the whole 'outsider here to mock the rich and famous' thing, but that's a good way to end up with more eyes on you than you'd like."

That said, she rises from the bar to venture elsewhere, no doubt in search of another conversation or merely a quieter spot to people-watch from. It just happens to place her closer to the big table. She, however, does not presume to interrupt conversations already taking place.

Alton Schmidt has posed:
Alton comes in after school. He's had a long day of it, and seems a little tired. He also seems a little fired up to be in here again. Yesterday reminded him how much fun it was to be in here. When he comes in...there's Sebastian. That's one of dad's friends that he talks to all the time. There's Emma again. A redhead he doesn't recognize...a dude he doesn't recognize talking to a woman he doesn't recognize.

But what really catches his attention today is Lorna. Her magnetic field registers on his senses, and that instantly draws him towards that table. He's never met anyone with a field of their own before, and this is very much new. He, of course, has a field of his own, constantly surrounding him in a similar way. When he approaches, though, he waves at Sebastian and Emma first, because he knows them. "Hey again..." Whew. More interesting days ahead of him.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian nods, "And I imagine in these circumstances you feel like you can do no less." Sebastian's expression is sympathetic, as he re-assumes his seat, off-handedly gesturing for Emma to illuminate "Max" while he speaks with Magneto's heir.

"If so, I would like to offer our assistance. We can place the club at your disposal, along with our event-planning staff, for any benefits or charity purposes you might wish to utilize them for. Or if it's something as simple as discreet meeting space on, shall we say, "neutral ground" for diplomatic initiatives, we have such spaces available as well. The point being, your father's vision most certainly does not deserve to perish with him, and while you may see fit to mold it in your own way, we would be happy to play what small part we might in helping to preserve it, and to help the people of Genosha."

Sebastian's ice-blue eyes turn to Alton when he approaches, and he smiles graciously, "Hello Alton, we're in the middle of a conversation, I'm afraid. Why don't you head over to the bar and let Mike get you your usual? I think we can make an exception to the usual Public House rules tonight. In fact, get whatever you like. My treat."

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder watches Selina walk away and slams his glass down on the bar, demanding a refill. He pushes himself up on the stool and, when his whiskey arrives, he drinks it in three straight swallows. His head is swimming a bit and he feels irritation. He let her get the better of him there. He's not at his best, she's right about that.

He startles for a moment as he looks up in the mirror and, for a flash, sees a face that's not his own. Yellow-skinned, leering, mouth stretched in a rictus around needled fangs. Laughing at him. The tumbler in his hand cracks, a sliver of glass shoving painfully into his palm, spilling blood on the bartop.

"Fuck," he mutters to himself, clutching his hand. His head hurts now, throbbing behind his eyes. THe psychically sensitive in the room probably feel the surge of something in him, something chaotic and wrathful and vile. Something that is not quite the same as the man they felt before.

"Bathroom," he mutters to the bartender and he's directed, half-stumbling out of the room as he tries to keep some semblance of sanity together. Not here. Not now. No one can see. No one can know.

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna smiled as a glass of water was set down in front of her and she took that up with more care than the wine. A soft thankyou was offered to the waiter that brought it out for her. She sipped at it with care, her green eyed gaze flickering toward Maxima briefly before she nodded and looked back to Emma and Sebastian in turn.

The green haired magnokinetic shifted in her seat, listening tentatively. "I'll be frank, Mister Shaw. Genosha needs many hands to simply bury the dead and clean up the rubble. I cannot rebuild or do more than triage for my people at the moment. Not until the very grim realities are handled. And I have yet to have offers to help me dig millions of graves.." She murmured softly, and looked down at her water glass. Her expression twisting with emotions.

As Alton came up, she glanced his way briefly, particularly as Shaw addressed him, but otherwise, she didn't speak.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma gives Lorna an encouraging smile, then turns to Max, her tone quiet as to not interrupt Sebastian and Lorna's conversation. "We are a social club that goes back centuries. The original Hellfire Club building is still in operation in London, and we have a subsidiary building in Madripoor. The Hellfire Club is both a place for people to unwind and let go; as well as a place for the elite and powerful to mingle away from prying eyes in our prestigious VIP lounge."

Maxima has posed:
"I see." She states simply enough, her hand grasping her drink and downing it quickly in a shot before putting it down. She then considers Emma's words, looking over at the pair of Shaw and Lorna briefly only to squint for a moment at Jack's strange moment. She glances over his way before finally saying, "Interesting." She looks back to Emma briefly and then nods her head, "So, those who have power on this world get together to talk and relax?" She asks and nods her head, "My real question is...do they real power or all their names simply written on this paper money that roams about?"

Alton Schmidt has posed:
Alton seems to understand the table's not quite ready for him yet, and when Sebastian speaks...well, that's the end of the matter. However, Sebastian also opened the bar for him under the table, and if he's going to get a beer out of this, he can wait for conversations! Free beer! It's so beautiful being here, every other place in the USA, they'd rightfully card him. But not here.

"Thanks, Sebastian!" He also orders a meal. Good times. Very good times. Lorna's field still tugs at him, but he knows who really runs things around here and acts accordingly. Good times. He won't overdo it, any more then he did last time, and he knows to sip it slowly, as he doesn't get alcohol all that often, but...GOOD TIMES.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Oh God. Please accept my deepest apologies, Your Majesty. I've been thoughtless and overeager." Shaw frowns, looking appropriately abashed, "And by way of a more material apology for my foolishness, it so happens that I have an immense amount of earth moving equipment at my disposal and personnel trained to use it, as well as personnell that could train any survivors on Genosha to operate it as well. And any other material needs you may have I can likely meet as well. Simply let me know what you require."

Sebastian holds up a hand, "And before you ask, yes, I absolutely have ulterior motives. I believe it is in my economic interest and that of the world at large to see Genosha rebuilt, and I freely admit that I will shamelessly try to curry favorable relations between yourself, your appointed subordinates, and the business interests represented by the Board here at the Club." Sebastian smiles more warmly yet again, "And that I hold the sincere hope that you will continue to grace us with your presence, at such time that you feel your responsibilities to your people and your nation allow."

He considers a few moments, "I would imagine you likely need water purification and power solutions as well?"

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna sipped at her water, looking rather exhausted from the conversation, but at least her break down in diplomacy gained straightforward results via Sebastian's words. She smiled, wan and pinched in her expression ever so faintly. "No apology needed. I simply find myself unable to speak if not frankly about such realities. I will gratefully accept your aid then. I have no issues with making future favorable deals in regards to business and such. You'll have to forgive me when I say that at the moment it is not a major concern to me." She glanced back down at her water glass, letting her fingers play over the condensation over it.

"Latveria is currently helping me to establish a wind farm and solar panels around the refugee camp. But I do need water solutions. Beyond transporting gallons of fresh water to the camps. We have a few fresh water rivers on the island, but the purification factories we once had..." She trailed off, she didn't need to say further.

Jack Ryder has posed:
Jack Ryder does not return to the gathering. An hour or so later, one of the servants will respond to a complaint and discover the window of the men's bathroom, barely big enough to fit a body through and too high to reach easily, has been torn out. There are smears of blood on the broken glass. The mirror has also been broken, left in shards on the floor.

And that night, out in New York City, something laughing and vicious and yellow as bile and red as blood, slashes through the rising warmth of the spring-kissed dark.

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma lifts a brow, interest clear on her face. "'This world'?" she repeats. "Ah. How very interesting. Do tell me more. But yes, Max, in answer to your question: both. Some people how power because of money, some because of connections, some due to influence..."

A sip of her drink. "And some... simply are powerful."

Maxima has posed:
A look at Emma and she nods her head a little as she considers her words before nodding, "I was afraid I was dealing with a bunch of people who worship imaginary concepts." She states and nods her head as she casually touches the rim of her drink before looking to the direction Jack went. She hmms a moment before looking back to Emma and stating, "That man was very distressed and he is getting more distressed by the moment." She nods her head, "Strange."

She then considers Emma a moment and hmms to her, "So, what does it take to gain entry into the VIP area of this Hellfire Club?" She looks to Emma, "Beyond simply walking in?"

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"All right then. While my earlier offer of course still stands, whenever you might be ready to take advantage of it, I can have a few of my best project managers readying a plan as soon as tomorrow. And I will engage some of my friends and business contacts to see if I might garner additional assistance. Some might balk at first..." Shaw grins conspiratorially towards Lorna, "But I can be rather persuasive when I need to be." He grows more serious, considering, "Do you have a liaison that my people can work with? I can imagine there are a vast array of demands on your time."

Hearing Max's question, Shaw glances over in her direction once more, "Usually it requires a large transaction of that imaginary concept. But that can be waived if a member of the board feels that someone would bring a unique and intriguing presence to our little social club." He quirks a bit of a wry smile, "And you might well be on your way to convincing us. Particularly if you elaborate on why you're speaking of our humble Earth as though you're not a native to it."

He does glance in the direction Maxima indicates, and seems utterly unconcerned, "The staff will take care of it if he has any problems."

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna glanced once around her again, and continued to sip at her water rather than wine for want of doing something. She wasn't sure what to do with her hands otherwise. But she listened to Sebastian and nodded again. "I can put you in touch with the handful of my staff that survived. A few ambassadors were off Genosha when it fell and are currently becoming the basis for much of my correspondence." She let her grip on the water glass fall and she returned her hands to her lap.

As Shaw turned his focus toward Max Lorna fell silent, listening curiously to the conversation as it fell. She had met a few strange people in her life, different times, dimensions...

Maxima has posed:
A look over at Shaw when he speaks up and Maxima blinks as she hmms, "I assume you are done with your conversation with the Queen here." She gestures to Lorna before looking at her briefly before saying to Shaw, "And one step at a time." She states simply enough, "I speak to you about your world as if I'm not a part of it because in a way I'm not and in a way I am." She leans toward him, "I am not native to it, though, no." She shakes her head and then she casually takes up her glass and looks at it. She considers it a moment and hten looks to Shaw, "I assume you are not so poor that one glass would be an issue for you."

As she looks back at the glass, it casually lifts from her hand and then simply crushes into a small orb about the size of a marble. It glows brightly, as if heated. She then allows it to land lightly in her palm. Despite the glow that is slowly fading due to the heat being drained by the ambient temperature in the room, she looks back to Shaw, "I believe this is what you call a marble now?"

Emma Frost has posed:
"As Mr. Shaw stated," Emma chuckles, then finishes her drink. As she places the glass on the table, it is whisked away and replaced with a full one without her asking.

Maxima's demonstration causes both Emma's brows to lift. "Fascinating. Telekinetic?" she asks, though... it's more than mere speculation. However, her tone poses it as such anyway.

Selina Kyle has posed:
Selina Kyle's mingling keeps her toward the periphery of the room, most of her conversations casual, superficial ones that don't go much further than finding out a few interests of various people, feigning interest in order to draw one thing or another out of them. Some might become eventual targets, depending on further research later on, but that is something she is evaluating whenever she attends any high-class function or gathering.

She never inserts herself into the middle of someone else's conversation, keeping up the probability of her not drawing too much attention to herself, VIP status or not. At least, not drawing attention to herself by doing anything that would be unusual amid other socialites and rich people.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Shaw looks suitably fascinated by the demonstration, "Well...we do welcome "gifted" individuals to the Club, whether VIPs or not." He chuckles, "And you can consider the glass...well...marble...a gift. I'm insured."

Shaw lets Emma take over the inquiry for the moment, again turning his attention to Lorna, "All right." He reaches into his coat and produces a business card, placing it on the table and sliding it towards Lorna, "This number reaches my personal assistant. Put your people in touch with her and she'll get you everything you need. And..." He reaches into the opposite side of his jacket, and pulls out another card, this one offered towards Lorna by hand, "This card has my personal number. If there are any difficulties whatsoever or you feel you're -not- getting what you need, feel free to contact me directly." Lorna would easily be able to sense that the card isn't a paper product...it's actually paper-thin machined titanium steel, with the lettering in embossed platinum. Ridiculously ostentatious would be one way of putting it. Don't worry, the corners are rounded to avoid being too sharp.

(Incidentally Alton's father likely provided those particular cards)

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna glanced side long at Maxima as she spoke, listening as the other woman spoke about being different and then promptly crushed the glass she'd picked up into.. a marble. She hmm'ed under her breath, looking interested, but not overly surprised or shocked at such a thing. She sat back, and looked as if she might say something more before Shaw turned his focus back to her.

Her green eyed gaze fell to the paper card and she nodded, reaching to pick up it. But the second card, //that// got her attention far more. The fact that it was metal, earned a smile to her lips and she twisted her fingers in the air. A faint glow of green coloring the tips and caused the metal punched card to float through the air to her grip.

"Well, thank you. I will keep that in mind, should I need to use it." She murmured.

Alton Schmidt has posed:
Alton, enjoying his meal, and now on his second beer (yay, Sebastian) finally gets tapped on the shoulder, and somebody seems to nudge him back towards the main table, which finally has space for the younger guy. Once given such an invitation, he comes back, as if it were all orchestrated somehow. Even as he comes back over, though, his gaze can't help but shift to Lorna. He felt it, when she called the steel card. One of the cards his dad made...it made him smile to see.

"Hello again. Glad to see you all this evening." He's reasonably polite, even in an upscale enviroment like this.

Maxima has posed:
A nod toward Shaw and she glances briefly to Emma before nodding, "It was." She states simply enough and then looks back to Lorna and smiles a little, "I assumed, based on what I read, that you were someone with power as well." She states and nods her head at Lorna before glancing to the arriving Alton. She looks him over briefly before lookin back to Shaw, "We shall see abou the VIP portion then." She nods her head as she looks over at Alton again and then hmms, "So, who is this?" She asks and tilts her haed.

Emma Frost has posed:
"Alton," Emma gave the teenager a half smile. "How's your father's jet lag? I'm hoping he'll make the meeting tomorrow."

Emma chuckles at Maxima. "My power lies within those imaginary piece of paper, I'm afraid. But they tend to hold a great deal of influence." She gestures to Alton. "This is Alton, the son of one of our board members. I'm afraid Mr. Schmidt spends most of his time back home in Germany or tending to the London club, but his son boards here in the US at one of the private schools."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Welcome back, Alton. Feel free to take your father's seat for the moment. See how it fits." Sebastian gestures to a particular one of the empty chairs, "Perhaps it will be yours one day, after all."

Shaw smiles almost paternally at Emma, "Don't be so humble, Emma, You've one of the sharpest minds on the board." He adds, "And you're rapidly proving to have our best eye for talent, at that." He lifts his glass towards Maxima in a bit of a salute before downing the remainder of its' contents. A brief wave over the top of the glass halts one of the nearby waitstaff from swooping in to scoop it up and replace it.

Lorna Dane has posed:
Lorna rose as she tucked the cards away into the small black purse that dangled over her shoulder. She spared a glance for the young teenager as he was introduced and she politely nodded. "A pleasure." Her focus shifted about the table, and she inclined her head to those gathered around. "Thank you for the invitation and the opportunity to speak. I look forward to working with you in the future, Mister Shaw, Ms. Frost." She smiled faintly, but it did not reach her eyes.

It would seem she had worn out what little reserve she'd managed mentally to put together.

"Please excuse me. But I have another engagement to attend to."

Alton Schmidt has posed:
"Thanks. Yeah, dad got off the plane, he's resting now. He'll be in soon." But as for taking his dad's seat? Well. Dad DOES regularly train him on finance and the details of running a company.

"That's...a pretty neat idea. Dad usually trains me to run the company, when I get to see him. It's...pretty neat. Most kids are looking for jobs. I get to look for ownership. It's a whole different world to be in." Taking dad's seat...

Unfortunately, the woman with the interesting magnetic field ran off, and then he wonders, "Who was that? I thought something looked familiar about her..."

Then, to Maxima. "Hello. I'm Alton." Others have introduced him, but he follows his own patterns too, and offers Maxima his hand. "It's a pleasure."

Maxima has posed:
A look to Emma and she hmms, "Sure." She states simply enough and then looks over at Shaw and nods to him as she stands up casually and takes Alton's hand for a quick shake before she idly rolls the marble over toward him and states, "There, enjoy." She nods her head, "Careful though, it's still hot." She nods her head and then considers, "For now, I'm going to leave. I will perhaps visit your club again to see about making things more permanent." She then casually turns and starts walking toward the exit.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
Sebastian rises to his feet as both Lorna and Maxima make their departures, making his own polite farewells. After Max and Lorna are both out of sight, he returns to his chair, giving Emma a glance with an upraised brow. He doesn't look upset at all, but seems to be asking her an unspoken question. But whatever it is, he turns his attention back to Alton, "You're luckier than you might know, Alton. My father taught me plenty of things, but how to run a company wasn't one of them. That I had to learn the hard way." He looks back in the direction that Lorna departed and notes, "And the green-haired one of our lovely guests was the daughter of Magneto and current ruler of Genosha, such as it is."

Emma Frost has posed:
"It was wonderful to meet you, Max," Emma chirps. "Do come back when you can. I suspect you'll liven things up around here quite well." With their visitors departed, Emma turned her attention back to the table. "My father still teaches me much about running the business," she says consideringly.

Alton Schmidt has posed:
Well, he met Pietro yesterday, and, "Her half brother Pietro was in yesterday. He was...very determined." But if that was the current ruler of Genosha, that would have to have been Lorna, as Wanda was still a princess. Still, if that was Magneto's daughter, and she had the field, that would have to be Polaris. Or Queen Lorna. No wonder she didn't stick around long, losing her dad and her country at the drop of a hat. "I should've come over sooner, maybe. We could've offered steel with the rebuilding efforts." Though that's technically his dad's offer to make, he figures it's not too far off what dad will actually do. Assuming he hasn't done it already. Germany is closer to Genosha than the USA. "I should probably talk to dad about that when he's done resting."

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Admirable initiative, Alton, but I think your father and I and all the others will have it well in hand. Though if you see him before I do and happen to mention it I wouldn't imagine it'd hurt." Shaw leans back in his chair, studying the crowd briefly once more, Ah, Ms. Kyle slipped out. A shame, he does like to personally greet any VIPs that stop by when he can. "And of course we'll see if Lex is interested, but I suspect he may want to limit his overt involvement during campaign season."

Emma Frost has posed:
Emma tilts her head. "Likely. It probably wouldn't look incredibly good for him to get involved, and it might lose him the human-first vote, for sure."

Alton Schmidt has posed:
Alton grins, "Yeah, probably. Although, since he's in town, I can expect to spend less time playing and more time with him learning the realities of how to ship that much steel to foreign country, how the tarrifs work, who moves the steel, export taxes, imports, writeoffs..." There's so much that goes into making such a move, and, well, when dad comes to the US, he is not remiss in explaining the hows and whys of it all to his son.

Sebastian Shaw has posed:
"Well, we all have to work sometime." Sebastian smiles wryly and rises to his feet, "And on that note, I have a rather massive project outline to draft in time for my engineers to get it tomorrow, so if you will excuse me?" He briefly places a hand on Emma's upper back, and as he moves by gives Alton a light clap on the shoulder, "Don't enjoy yourself -too- much if you're meeting with your father in the morning." He gives the young man a warm smile, and then with assistant in tow, moves to head out of the bar and back to the private elevator that will take him to his 13th floor suite.