969/Highway to Hell Part I

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Highway to Hell Part I
Date of Scene: 04 April 2020
Location: Latverian Embassy
Synopsis: Jane has agreed to work with Doom which surely won't end badly at ALL.
Cast of Characters: Victor Von Doom, Jane Foster, Samantha Dunbar

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Even though the opening gala for the Latverian Embassy is not for a few days, it does not mean that business is not being conducted. Or that Doom has not already established his presence in such a critical location.

However, even the brilliance that is Doom cannot handle everything by himself. And he would never consult with the accursed Richards. But fortunately, there are others that are aware of the technical demands of multidimensional physics.

Which is why an emissary was sent to Dr. Foster's office, the young courier professional in both dress and demeanor as they hand over a formal invitation and request for a meeting. The actual specifics are vague, but it's... definitely an unusual request.

Jane Foster has posed:
The gala probably cuts way, way above Jane's usual stipend for events covered by various university and philanthropic events. Being a small c celebrity astrophysicist, no matter how popular, usually doesn't lead to invitations for movie premieres, white-tie events, or black-tie parties where world leaders and superheroes of the highest order hobnob. Not often, anyway. Standing in for someone's boss or being assigned as required is another matter. So imagine her particular surprise when an emissary from Latveria shows up -- probably triggering sixteen different security protocols including the immediate shutdown of servers and throwing of power switches to flip everything except the critical Matlab programs that take months to run -- onto backup generators. Network mayhem is to be instituted *now*.

"Really," she says with that sort of vaguely sardonic look mistaken easily for a hint of bemusement for those who don't know her. It is the same face pulled by a doctor reading unlikely reports claiming ostentatious things like Wakanda having a single cure-all for cancer without some kind of magic or mutation behind it. She nonetheless isn't rude. No, not that stupid by far. Neither is the messenger to be shot. "I thank you and the Latverian Embassy for the consideration to invite me." It /is/ addressed to Jane Foster and not some other person? Not Sven, the questionably attractive Swede in her general employ who seems to have a hidden secret, possibly alien DNA? This is risky, still. "Latveria would like a meeting. With me."

Yes, it's broken in two, for confirmation. She doesn't even have to look at her calendar. Why? Every day is exactly full fo too much work. "When would be ideal?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
The courier is actually a fairly handsome fellow, and he smiles pleasantly, "My lord Doom was quite specific that he wished to speak with you, Doctor Jane Foster." He says that quite clearly, though there might be a hint of amusement at her reaction. "Please note this is not for the gala, but rather a separate meeting. Though perhaps you would be invited if things progress well here?"

He then adds, "To be frank, I believe m'lord would like to speak with you as soon as possible. When your schedule allows, of course." He bows politely again, to punctuate his words.

Jane Foster has posed:
Yep, bemusement indeed. The thousand different cycles spinning around in Jane's mind mark the work that needs to be taken care of. "Certainly. Tonight would surely be too soon, isn't it?" It bears asking. "An evening then that isn't Tuesday will do just fine." She won't bite her lip in thought, not here, not in front of that courier. She should know better.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
The courier smiles, "Tonight would be perfect, as a matter of fact. Shall I say a specific time for your arrival?" If he notices any of the wheels spinning in Jane's head about this, he is polite enough to not mention it.

Apparently whatever this is about, it is important enough that Doom would actually leave his schedule open for this. Which can be interesting, and perhaps slightly frightening.

Jane Foster has posed:
"Nine-thirty, which should allow enough time for wrapping up anything necessary." Absently Jane tugs at her sleeve to straighten it out, the elegant fall of her blazer landing square against the back of her hand and not catching on a slender golden bangle locked around her wrist. "If that would satisfy, I can be there promptly. No need for a parking pass. Public transit in this city will have to do. I imagine it's not quite so congested in Latveria, is it?"

She can make small talk and set herself in order. The tasks are drawn up, starting with a definite change of clothes into something definitely on the side of more professional. Absolutely nothing to worry about. Nothing at all.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
The courier chuckles softly, "Well, the maglevs are very efficient in public transportation, and have no carbon footprint, of course." He bows again, "And that shall be more than satisfactory. The receptionist will show you in without hesitation. Though if you need it, the Embassy can send a car for you instead. It would not be any trouble at all."

Jane Foster has posed:
"Excellent. I will be sure to inform you if anything changes." Like aliens coming out of portals or trouble involving nanites, a variety of bots, or Namor being moody about his hair flopping the wrong way, thereby swamping the harbour and forcing the East River to run backwards in a torrent of toxic sludge all over Manhattan and Brooklyn. Some boroughs have the most rotten luck, but at least they're not Staten Island.

With the meeting concluded there, at least the arrangements, Jane is polite enough to escort the courier out. It keeps security from having a near panic attack.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
The courier leaves, looking quite relieved that Jane Foster agreed. Because while Doom's wrath is terrible with bad news... the opposite is also true. Good news is always well received!

And it is, the courier receiving a week's paid vacation, to be taken after the opening gala of course. So now Doom prepares, glancing around as preparations are to be made. And he goes over the equations again, but this time does it on the displays in the main hall. And checks to see that the rest of his vital personnel are transferring to the embassy.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
There are few people who can freely just saunter into Doom's presence no matter where he is. But then, there are also very few people who Doom can track due to the nanites he injected into her body. So, it's an even enough trade all things considered according to Samantha Dunbar.

The young woman moves into Doom's presence with an authortative confidence upon entering the room, and thus his presence, without so much as a knock. The courier's news isn't the only good news Doom is going to recieve today. "The paparazzi agent that managed to get those photographs has been - dealt with," she assuages him with a very self-satisfied sort of smile. She does not detail the manner in which this has been done, but her tone suggests the matter will never need be broached again.

"Any other new developments I should be aware of?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom smiles slightly, "Actually, yes. We will be receiving a visitor this evening. Doctor Jane Foster." He pulls up her profile on a holographic display, complete with her publicly known history. Though the Asgardian information is not as important to him so much as, "She is an expert in extraplanar realms and multiversal bridges, which is vital for my current project here in New York."

He glances at Lancer, and hmms, "I will trust your discretion then. But yes, Doctor Foster should be treated well while she is here. I am certain that her association with certain Asgardians will have her... biased against me, to a degree. It's important that we don't validate those fears, Lancer."

Jane Foster has posed:
Across the city, Jane Foster -- who has defended her work to some of the highest members in Congress and most of SHIELD's echelons -- is staring at her closet. What sort of thing speaks of professionalism without obviously declaring it's a kind of armour to meet Victor Von Doom? Quite frankly, the black and black and black alternatives so common for her are suitable enough. No flashy frocks, that makes no sense, and she finally settles on what amounts to a reasonable compromise. Even if it's tailored within an inch of its damn life and could recall McQueen's more vintage seasons, because it really is. Off goes the girl.

Mind you, she has a short trip through the subway along with the masses of humanity not displaced in New York through unconventional means. The Embassy District, no matter how scattered, is posh enough for her not to stand out. Jane alights in Midtown and presents her credentials if requested at the embassy, prepared to go through a rather thorough vetting if need be. Hence showing up fashionably early, not late. It pays to be prompt. Neither has she deigned to bring more than a smart, small bag with minimal electronics, just a single phone and a pair of keys marked with one of those little useful square, stick-on devices that track where they might be.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
'Lancer' nods her head, "Of course," she agrees without even a moment's hesitation or even thought to inquire further. "I'll give her no reasons to doubt. And, perhaps give her reasons to formulate her own estimations against those of her Asgardian contacts." She knows of what Doom speaks, to some degree.

Linking up with the nearby DoomTech, she sends an order to one of the DoomBots to bring in a variety of refreshments, nothing too extravagant, but enough to comfort. Tea, water, lemon, milk, the simple pleasures.

"Is there anying in specific you'd like me to do while she's here, beyond treat her as an honored guest?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom looks over at Lancer, "Just be vigilant. Doctor Foster has some acquaintances that are... overly zealous, so they might not approve of her coming to the Embassy. Alertness is vital here." Not that Doom has any sinister intentions, but try telling that to the Avengers...

Later, Jane's vetting is... well, mainly just pulling up a holographic reproduction of her face, confirming that it is, in fact, Doctor Foster, and she is shown into the main hall by the receptionist.

Standing in the center of the hall, is Doctor Doom. His demeanor is actually welcoming, as he bows politely towards Jane, "Doctor Foster. It is an honor to finally make your acquaintance, and I am glad that you accepted my invitation. I trust your trip here was without incident?" He straightens, and gestures over towards Lancer, "Lancer is one of my bodyguards."

Jane Foster has posed:
Jane's features match the holographic image. Hopefully they picked a decent photograph, but she needs not to worry about that. Squaring her shoulders up and carrying the burdens of the world are purely part of getting through every day, and an indomitable bit of mettle pushes her on. She gives a vague sense of appreciation for the architecture of the building without coming to a halt and gawping like a tourist. There may be time for that later.

Impressive in height Jane is not. Neither is the woman in any way remarkable for obvious signs; there aren't any horns or immense tissue density involved there. Just someone perfectly ready to spar with whatever lies ahead, which means turning on that smile and moving directly towards Doom to greet him appropriately. And Samantha with that, giving Lancer that friendly smile. She has some practice curtseying or bowing, but it's the former she falls back on. Foot sliding behind her, knees dipping, the movements are clean and elegant enough to please most demanding American standards. "Doctor Doom," she replies in greeting. "I appreciate the invitation, especially your willingness to meet on such notice. Ms. Lancer, good evening. Nothing unusual to speak of. All is well for you, I may hope?"

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
"It is an excellent evening, Doctor Foster. Thank you." She gestures to the small cart holding a few small snacks such as small cookies, a few fruits, and above mentioned drinks. "Help yourself if you're so inclined. I'm afraid I'm not used to playing hostess, but I'll do my best. Please, let me know if you need anything." She smiles, briefly, warmly and, most importantly, sincerely.

She's been introduced, has returned the polite greeting and made her offerings, she looks then to Victor, allowing him to then guide the conversation and the visit in the direction he desires.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom smiles, "All is very well, since you were gracious enough to accept my invitation." He gestures, "To be frank, I was hoping to enlist your expertise for a particular problem that I have."

He gestures, and holographic screens appear in the air, showing a variety of complex astrophysics equations relating to dimensional bridges. Very similar to Doctor Foster's work, but also different, though math is math, and Doctor Doom smiles a bit, "This is a problem I've been working on for a... while, and have yet to find a satisfactory conclusion with the equations. I thought a... different perspective might be valuable."

Indeed, the equations Doom has here are brilliant, but they are flawed in minor ways. Though it doesn't look like he's attempting to build a superweapon or hold the world hostage based on what these equations mean, anyway.

Jane Foster has posed:
There's the lede buried under the niceties of introductions and formality. Jane doesn't startle, her brown eyes simmering with a clarity and warmth that tends to accentuate her youth instead of elevating her into that cadre of older, wiser scientists across the world. She is not the technocrat seated at the head of a UN mission or global agency with prestige and commission, no trace of silver in her hair or some of that fraught doubt wiser minds probably had if they received such an invitation. Keep smiling, Jane. Keep smiling. She lifts her gaze when the holograms take form, shaped details and registered wavelengths on display.

Math is math, science is science. They all build off of Newton in the end, and debts owed to a precious few minds in the course of human history. "Give me a moment, if you would. When it comes to dimensional perforations and the advanced principles of an Einstein-Rosen bridge, the equations start breaking down with a failure to account for the Gauss-Bonnet gravity modifier and the effects on curved spacetime." She drifts along in front of the equations, scrutinizing their marginal works and the cascade of mathematical outcomes. "An important outcome is whether you are working with curved spacetime or a flat plane, because then accounting for exotic matter and energy dispersion along the front would invalidate a good portion of that." A slight point up to one of his tumbling findings, which is probably is more than aware of. Maybe not. "Morris' latest postulations on that front do not follow well other quantum scientists on the forefront. However, I would wonder about your own take. You must have measurements sensitive enough to distinguish the energy outputs and those input for a potential bridge, and see where the losses are."

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
A mathematical genius Samantha Dunbar is not. But, then, if she were Doctor Foster wouldn't have been invited, perhaps. The offer having been made, she doesn't offer it again, especially when Jane begins on her tangent which she's watched Doom go through more times than she can currently count. While she might not understand everything, there are generalities she can follow and the fact that they might be talking a bit above her own comprehension doesn't seem to bother her at all. Unlike many in her position, she hardly looks bored, or lost.

Rather, she seems intently interested. Which she truly is, on multiple levels. Doom had told her to remain alert. And, alert she remains. Not just for those that might barge in or try and figure out why Jane is here in the immediate now - but also Jane herself. Doom, and his reaction to what Jane is saying. Their interaction and how they will or won't work on Doom's project. The tiny nuances. And while her presence remains and she doesn't even make an attempt to 'disappear', she also doesn't even attempt to participate in the conversation.

This is Doom's guest. Not hers, afterall.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doctor Doom ahs, "True, and some dimensions actually have negative curvature, or even have the infamous problem of negative mass which can cause for an infinite feedback loop..." He smiles, stepping over towards Jane and gesturing to the formula, "The instruments we have are sensitive, but well..."

He then nods, "Doctor Foster, I would like to hire you, as a consultant and advisor, on a project I am working on. It is uniquely suited for your expertise, and you will be suitably compensated for that. Your observations and commentary here have solidified my belief that you are the expert that I would want on this project."

A pause. "I have no illusions about my... reputation, in such things. Let me make something perfectly clear. This is not any sort of 'nefarious scheme' of mine. This is my attempt to resolve something that I have been trying to accomplish for... many years." A pause, and then he extends a hand towards Jane, "And to accomplish this... I will need your help." He doesn't say please, but actually admitting he needs help?!?

Jane Foster has posed:
"Negative curvature would be less of an issue for semi-classical theorems, but the matter in the end is your destination. Where are you trying to fold spacetime to determines all the other principles that surround it, and whether the laws as we know them are utterly suspended or only profiled in part," Jane hazards, though her eyes are narrowed with the reflections of scrolling data illuminating the uplifted cheekbones and scrawled, narrow creases left on her forehead by thought. She clears her throat. "Which is rather presumptuous of me to question, but the arrangements here are more or less sound." She allows that much, the slight bell of her sleeve sweeping over her knuckles. Pushing a lock of her hair behind her ear, she nods to Lancer. "Sorry about that. Getting caught up in talk without answering your question. You are doing a fine job as a hostess. A bottle of water would be fine." A quick check of the cart assures this won't be a demanding order or send a bodyguard scurrying off from a man who could probably toss her through a wall without even trying.

Not that she dares suggest Victor would do such a thing, or even her bearing indicates it. But there are professional courtesies for other professionals, all in all.

Then her attention is fully on Victor again, those eyes widening a fraction involuntarily. Not for long. The scrutiny sinks in the deeper, and it's the scalpel of the mind brought to bear with Occam's Razor conveniently in the other hand. "You have access to vast resources and scientific credentials that... we need neither dwell on or claim to be less than sterling. You also have a reputation for being singularly solitary on most of your developments, if we are being forthright. In that respect, I know your reputation to be most direct and clear on your intentions or achievements. So there really is no need to downplay the impact you had on the community in a multitude of fields." This isn't buttering it up, this is factual to a point. "I will take the claim you want my assistance and ask why. Because, with all due respect, there are /betting pools in Vegas/ about the last time you asked for any kind of aid outside of a political context. I don't need to tell you about the social media accounts or the Doom Stands Alone tracking. What accomplishment do you need me for?"

Please don't be cutting down Yggdrasil. Please no. Odin really hates tourism.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doctor Doom pauses, "I am... uncertain if you are familiar with my family history, Doctor Foster. My mother is trapped in... well, it would not be imprecise to call it 'Hell', as it the realm of a demon you are undoubtedly familiar with, who styles himself as a literal Satan. Even though he is far more petty and petulant than any creation of Milton's might be." Yes, Doom is careful enough not to refer to Mephisto by name.

He looks over at the equations, "For many years I have sought the key to free her from her banishment. It was the reason that I left my throne years ago, to seek out a way to get to her. Obviously, I was unsuccessful, and I had to return to Latveria, as the heir I placed on the throne was unable to keep order as I envisioned that he could."

His eyes glance towards Jane then, "You are correct, Doom has many minions, and many that are skilled in such fields. However, Doom has no one as skilled as you in this particular field of expertise, and for this I would have someone that I could respect. Which is why I am asking for your assistance with this. I wish for no toady or sycophant that acknowledges my brilliance out of fear. Since you have walked with gods in your past... I suspect that is not something I would have to worry about with you." A bit of wry humor on that observation.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
Lancer moves to get a chilled bottle of water, it's offered to Jane on a small tray, along with a few lemon wedges and glass, should she wish to pour. The glass, also, had been chilled. These are offered to Doom's guest without a second thought.

She smiles at Jane, then, at the woman's words. Though that smile falters, some, as Doom explains further. She replies to Jane, soberly, "I have been with Doctor Doom since his return, Doctor Foster. As you say, he does not ask for help lightly, or often. Nor is he disposed to deceit. He speaks truth. And if you can see your way to assist him in this manner, I, personally, would be grateful to you for that. Despite the reputation he has been marked with, he has given much of himself to the world. Especially to Latveria." This is fact, at the very least of how well Latveria is being run, the prosperity of the people and the downfall it suffered when Doom left - and it's turnaround upon his return.

"The choice is yours to make, of course. But, you're right in one thing. He's not asked for assistance in the time I've known him. Whether you answer yes, or no to his offer, he will continue his persuit. But with your help, he may reach that solution all the more reliably."

Jane Foster has posed:
Newsflash! Hi-ho, Kermit the Frog reporting that the sky is falling and Doom needs help. Thundercrash, cue flailing Kermit arms and running around. It's a doombot! Must be!

Jane doesn't change her expression much either way while Doom lays out his reasoning. Much like a student at an advanced seminar in front of one of the greats, it hardly lands upon her to interrupt and finish the story without a vital contribution or setting a record straight. To be fair, there's no look of incredulity stealing over her heart-shaped face. No curl of the lip in disgusted annoyance or eyes narrowing in disbelief, those tells so commonplace across American culture. A byproduct of American exceptionalism when it actually works, a seizure of that Dream, her poker face is not perhaps as expert as some. Confidently an onlooker may assess her parsing through the information, crunching down the components of individual statements and assembling them to a complete whole. She is not a computer, nevertheless. Her expression holds a degree of cloudiness, resolving to a bit of startlement.

So kindly offering the requested water, Samantha receives a brief but appreciative nod. Jane holds the bottle, not thinking to crack the plastic cap and listen for the crumpling of the inner seal unless Latverian standards don't match up to American. Briefly she glances down to check the label, a matter of overt inquiry probably emerging from the piled up cars on that train of thought. A derailment requiring immediate correction. "First," she posits, "your correct form of address is Doctor Doom? I'd like to be certain I am not committing an oversight there, regardless of your educational achievements." Might be a litmus test, might be a normalizing around the overt revelation "Doom Needs Help."

"So I am clear. Your mother is alive and exiled in another dimension. This dimension happens to be ruled over by a being styling himself as the Devil. I'll hold off asking how you can be certain of her status," Jane takes in a slow, awful breath. This is not entirely unlike staring at Mjolnir and getting a very good idea of what that reading means. Or the rainbow bridge smashing into Earth, leaving that undeniable stylized stamp of unearthly origins. "Your calculations have not provided a way to reach that dimension by way of a stable gateway allowing matter to transfer between here and there, or more importantly, there and here. I am guessing you ran up against the reasonable limits on duration, as most bridges last a second or more; transmitting matter cohesively; and quantities able to handle a human woman's mass and volume." Each point is ticked off. "Would you correct me on this so far?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom nods, looking suitably impressed, "Yes. The transfer has been... violent, and brief. Any attempted gateway has been overwhelmed by an energy surge that is... catastrophic in nature. Doubly so to anyone that would be caught in it." Though he doesn't exactly say how he knows that, first hand.

He then continues, "Your suppositions are correct, and I'm... well, time works differently in that realm. While I am not one hundred percent certain she is, in fact, alive... as much as one can be there, I do believe that she can be recovered." A pause, then he adds, "Doctor Doom would be more than sufficient. It is a title that I have, in fact, earned." Though he doesn't say exactly where. His past is a bit obscure, despite the entanglements he's had with Richards and the Four.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
"Would you not do the same, if your own mother was trapped there?" Inquires Samantha to Jane, reasonably. Her mouth presses into a thin line, suggestive she, of course, would, herself, take such a course if she needed to. "I know it is much to consider. BUt, considering the fact that Valhalla is, indeed a place and not just a work of fiction as so many thought for so many centuries, you must believe that other places also have a foothold in this reality even though they might not exactly share the same plane of existance."

SHe looks to Doom, looks back to Jane again. "But, you understand well. Both the situation, and it's gravity."

Jane Foster has posed:
"Well, obviously that isn't going to work for any transfer of organic matter. Much less one's mother." Jane presses her lips together, their line turning a blanched white with all things consider. She reaches up and pushes her bangs away from her brow, chestnut waves already trying to come loose from the style she managed with a quick brushing and a quicker prayer. The movement is semi-conscious at best. "Reconstituting anyone on the other side is swiftly passing discussions of quantum physics and approaching levels of... god-like power, basically. The need for an energy source to sustain that is theoretically unavailable on Earth without harnessing some very interesting supplies, notably the sun. I thought a Dyson swarm exercise would be easier than this, using Lagrange Points and a host of drones." Talking to the master of them too. She trails off, a wry smile barely seen and vanishing away.

"Doctor Doom, Ms. Lancer, adding fluctuations to the time stream -and- other dimensional challenges into this scenario rapidly escalates the difficulty level, which I imagine you are both well aware of. Narrow it down to a, pardon the euphemism, Hail Mary situation and our shot gets considerably less straightforward. You are asking me to shoot a gun with fuel-grade plutonium behind the bullet and strike the supermassive black hole in the center of the Milky Way without hitting any particles in between here and there. The bullet needs to be at the event horizon in 8 minutes, twenty seconds. Plus my eyes are closed and I'm facing away." She doesn't laugh, but it illustrates her point, hopefully. "May I ask whether anyone has considered the bridge would -also- be open for this self-named Satan to come through and what plans are considered to stop us from facing an interspatial invasion by her jailer?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doctor Doom smiles a bit at the mention of a Dyson swarm, "We can talk about Dyson swarms later, if you wish. I do have some ideas for that which are far less risky than, say, putting a singularity on the Moon." A cough, "Not that I have an issue with creating small artificial singularities, I have conducted some minor... experiments, in those fields, particularly in regards to interstellar travel."

He nods, "Yes, I am aware of the challenges, Doctor Foster, and as far as keeping the lord of this realm from coming through... well, I am not unskilled in the art of mystic lore. I have enough knowledge in the nature of wards to keep him at bay, at least for the duration of the... extraction."

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
Lancer gives a small, but approving smile Doom's way and then once again looks towards Jane, not having let her level of alertness falter in even the slightest measure during the meeting yet. Analyzing, measuring. There is a reason why Doom keeps her around, certainly.

"Tell me, Doctor Foster, is it not a worthy cause? And, a challenge befitting a woman of your intellect and reputation? Please. If you have other concerns, voice them. There is only directness, and honesty here amongst friends, and collegues."

Jane Foster has posed:
Doom's statements require further consideration, though Jane pushes aside the possibility of a Dyson sphere or a Dyson swarm for later consideration. She might well recognize the temptation set before her, whiskey to the alcoholic recovered or water to the desert traveler parched by the unrelenting sun. Keep telling herself that, she might just evade the open trap and not necessarily the hidden threats buried beneath the greenery of this unknown path she takes. "I cannot really speak for the mystic lore, though it might lead me to ask the obvious. How did your mother end up where she is, and what are the consequences to bringing her back? I assume that her jailer won't be very happy about removing here. Do you see any version of this where he doesn't come storming after her, you, notably anyone who helped you? I am not a country nor have a country's resources at my disposal. Saying I can make that shot, saying the equations do work out, what kind of protection is in place?"

She doesn't falter there, but she has to lift the water bottle now to her lips and take a short, brief sip. It's a polite one. Probably the vestiges of manners from parents who called on her not to slurp or try to gulp it down too fast. She gives them both an even look. "This is not about worthy causes so much as doing the right thing, in a way that will not hurt more than it helps. The remedy should not be worse than the problem we set out to solve. I'm an astrophysicist, but doctor can mean a specific respect for life. And all respect given, I don't think that you would appreciate me participating in a venture that hurts your mother or worse. I've seen Star Trek and what happens when the teleporters don't beam someone up right. Not scrambling her is a key point. Putting people through wormholes is a theoretical practice for the most part, and doing that through alternate dimensions..."

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom nods, "Valid questions, and yes, her jailer will not be pleased at the attempt to remove her from his domain. However..." And then he smiles, "I have spent my lifetime preparing for this moment, Doctor Foster. With both magic and science. I can assure you I am prepared."

He pauses at her own concerns about her safety, and nods, "I can offer my own personal protection, Doctor Foster. I understand your reluctance, and can only assure you that I will ensure your safety, first and foremost. Though, I do not believe you would be in any danger. However, dangers cannot always be foreseen or predicted, so Doom would, of course, make sure your safety was paramount. Even above my own."

In regards to the risk of wormholes and teleportation, well, Doom smiles a touch more at that, "Indeed. But I don't believe any of your colleagues, until now, have attempted to use the mystical arts in conjunction with science to make them work. After all, what is the quote... 'any science sufficiently advanced is indistinguishable from magic?' Magic only appears to be, well, magic, because most cannot grasp the underlying rules that make it work, scientifically." Such as the accursed RICHARDS, but that's a rant for another time.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
"I beleive you have an understanding," ventures Lancer, "Of the protection and dedication Doom has given to his people, Doctor Foster. He would extend that very same dedication to you. That does not mean just him. It means everything at his disposal. Including myself, Victorious, and his technology among many others." There is a measure of simple confidence in her mein, suggestive she has no doubts of Doom's honor or ability to see to Jane's safety in this event.

She looks at Doctor Doom for a long moment, then back to Jane. "And, he has an, if you will, old fashioned sense of honor. To those that aid him when he has need of it, he has a sense of duty, appreciation, beyond any words spoken. For whatever my word is worth to you, as we've only just met. But I am not a woman who gives her allegiance lightly."

Jane Foster has posed:
"She is your mother," Jane replies. It's a fact laid out as obvious as the sun in the sky. It might almost leave her shoulders dropping an inch. "To even consider this as more than an exercise in speculation, you would have to be two parts mad and four parts brave, even bombastic. Has the Pope weighed in?" Not a practicing Catholic, so it's more than likely the girl who walked with Asgardian gods has a few hints of humour buried in there. Even if coming up with a laugh when conversing about breaching other dimensional walls is the current conversation point.

"Of course you're going to do whatever you can to bring her home safe and sound. Moving mountains or obliterating them, if I had to guess." She slides two fingers up the bridge of her delicate nose, the sole impression of any stress. "Do you do anything by half measures?" A mere question. "That's rhetorical," she adds, a wry smile there. Another test and perhaps not. "You won't find me dabbling very much in those arts because they aren't at all mine. And the last person who dabbled in them around me caused hundreds of deaths, collateral damage in the millions, and New York still hasn't totally recovered from all the damage. It's been longer than I thought." She almost glances for the window, any of them, which speaks to memory elbowing its way in where it's not wanted. Kicking it over is next to impossible. "Arthur C. Clarke had a point, but neither did he actually know about real honest-to-goodness people who wield real magic that defies all the laws of physics. I'll take his first law, but not that time-honoured chestnut." Nose-scrunch, engage. "Leaping the bridge between the two by altering rules according to will and whim isn't science, but another branch of abilities altogether. If you want that I'm not your person, but this... this I can at least weather a few different theories on and crunch some numbers. Granted it won't be overnight nor will it be fast. Breakthroughs like this take time, even with the best supercomputers at our disposal. The variables, the equations, the parameters to be set. 'Hell dimension number four versus number six.' Do you /have/ a functional model of the dimensional system to compare with, or are we going off a name and trying to dig down to the right circle of the Inferno?"

The water bottle clickety scrunches. Sam is there, giving positive rapport and the happiest Glassdoor reviews possible. Jane looks down at the bottle, carefully putting the lid on it. "Is the UN going to have a hissy fit at this? Should I expect some angry person in a red suit showing up on my doorstep?"

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doom actually laughs softly at the mention of the Pope, "Oh, I haven't asked him, though if I ever have to deal with vampires, I do have his phone number available." He then nods, "I will bring her back. I must. And to have your assistance with this, it is a boon to me, Doctor Foster."

He looks at Doctor Foster, "I will be... gathering data through means you would not necessarily approve of, but this is not something you would have to directly deal with. But in a situation like this, only attempting to use science, or magic, would be disastrous. And I don't expect this to be instant." A rueful expression shows on the mask, "I have been doing this for... far too long." Thoughts flicker back, to an arrogant Romani youth in a school far from his home.

He then smiles, "Your consultation work with the Latverian Embassy will be properly sourced and accredited, do not fear. This should not cause any issue with the United Nations, or your nation here." He extends his hand towards Doctor Foster, "And I do look forward to working with you. My own resources are at your disposal for this." Which is... well, Latveria is arguably the most technologically advanced country on the planet, after all.

Unless you were lucky enough to have a vibranium meteorite in your backyard, anyway...

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
Samantha is there, to neatly take the emptied water bottle from Jane's hand, neatly and without pause. Alert, indeed. She gives a nod and a smile of approval of Jane's agreement, if somewhat reserved, to assist Doom in his rather fantastical project, but one she clearly believes him both capable of doing as well as succeeding at. The bottle is set upon the tray, and she can only offer Jane a, "Thank you. We do look forward to working with you." From her her front pocket, she produces a card that simply has a telephone number on it. No name.

"If you have need of anything in regards to the project, let me know. I'll make sure whatever is needed is available to you."

Jane Foster has posed:
Pretty safe to say Jane is going to need a glass of wine after this. Water isn't cutting it. Possibly multiple glasses of wine, a hammered out email, and second thoughts staring into her own mirror. Her warm brown eyes close, cinnamon hair falling in front of her face. "And here I said I wanted a challenge," she adds, brows raised a little and her smile a touch quizzical at herself. "You have delivered me one, of course. As I said, it will take time to start piecing it out around my other obligations and such." She takes the card from Samantha, almost bemused, looking at the front and back. Good enough. Without her phone on hand, and not rude enough to dig around for it, she will be carefully holding onto that. No plugging it in.

"My work on this is above board. No shortcuts, Doctor, no questionable actions. The penance of doing it the right way and the hard way is, fortunately, a surer route to success. At least in my experience." Alliances with one of the most dreaded men in the world and she really, really needs to consider that drink. "I have the feeling those shortcuts would come back and bite you in the end. Better not to focus on that." Her breath escapes through her rounded lips. "Yes, this fortunately lets me try to break through some of those limitations on our current models and understanding. Maybe rustle up some leaps forward for humanity."

The golden bracelet on her wrist may have an opinion but it ain't talking.

Victor Von Doom has posed:
Doctor Doom nods, "No shortcuts, no questionable actions. I shall... defer, to your pace in this regard." He gives her a look, and then says, "If you wish something stronger than water, I do have some fine vintages here. Not just Latveria, but also from a variety of locales. Obviously, you don't have to drink them here, if you wished to have a bottle to take home. Consider it a gift."

He looks at Jane and says, "The advancement of humanity has been my primary concern, and that has not changed nor wavered." Of course, he might think humanity is best served by having him in charge, but... well, Latveria shows that it isn't the most unreasonable idea.

Samantha Dunbar has posed:
The meeting over, the agreement made, Samantha seems pleased enough with the outcome. "Do you have a favorite?" Another warm smile offered, "We can have it delivered, or retrieve it for you now. Regardless, it really was a pleasure meeting you, Doctor Foster. Thank you. For everything." She inclines her head in regal fashion to the other woman.