1963-12-05 - Queen in the Castle
Summary: Emma returns to the Hellfire Club after a brief absence.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
emma sebastian 

It's too early in the day for the Hellfire Club to be very busy. For all the members like to pretend they're the movers and the shakers of the world, the people in power with nothing to hide, they still like to pursue their more exotic amusements under the cover of night.

That, and some of them actually have responsibilities during the day.

Emma has plenty of responsibilities, but this afternoon she's chosen to leave them be for a bit in favor of a little bit of frivolity. After all, she's been playing the part of the schoolmarm for months now. It's starting to chafe.

Dressed in a short robe of white silk tied loosely around her waist, her hair still swept up, she's rifling idly through a wardrobe in one of the upstairs rooms, trying to decide if anything inside of it is still worth keeping. "No response to that," she sighs as she flips past one outfit. "That was lovely, but I did make such a statement in it, it seems a waste to use it again."


While Emma's been working her magic, as it were, at her own endeavors, Sebastian has been doing much the same for his company, Shaw Industries. One can't possibly succeed in the world by ignoring such remarkable happenstances such as, but not limited to, the assassination of a president. And he hasn't.

Of course, that means that the Hellfire Club, while not ignored, thrummed steadily on course as it has for so long. Now, however, as the lovely White Queen digs through her things, the Black King stalks the halls in quiet companionship.

School-marms are particularly dreadful, or the appearance of such, it is easily agreed. He remains by the door, leaning upon the jamb, a hint of a quirked smile playing upon his lips. "And if you wore it again, just imagine your statement." One simply doesn't wear the same thing twice! "Regardless of your decisions," his tones seem to make that wave of dismissal for him as the smile grows, "you are looking lovely this evening. Going out, or staying in?"


"Staying in, for certain," Emma answers without looking away from the wardrobe, running her hand down a silken sleeve. "Honestly, since the president was assassinated, it's as though there's been a moratorium on anyone enjoying themselves. Such dreadful things as pleasure must be kept behind closed doors at times like these."

She slides a few more hangers down the pole, pausing to draw out a glittering confection that seems as much mesh as fabric, with a neckline that reaches the navel and slits in the skirt that rise almost to the waist. "That…I can work with," she muses, finally glancing over her shoulder with a faint smirk.

"I saw your numbers this morning. You've been a busy boy, Shaw."


"Oh, I'm certain there is a random, rogue smile somewhere in this city. No doubt you would be the one to find it." Sebastian remains where he is, watching as she goes from outfit to outfit, finally choosing one that suits her mood. "Then the few of us who refuse to be worn down will have to remind the rest of them that there is still more in the world than just that one action. Besides," Now, he straightens from his lean and drops his hands into suit-pants pockets for a slow saunter in. "It wouldn't be fun if everyone was doing it." Having fun, that is.

"I like that dress. I don't recall you wearing it, so yes, please." Must have been while he was away? He slows in his approach and chuckles softly in the observation. "I know there is more in the world than just one man. But.. speaking of just one man, I should send my attorney out to that Loki fellow. He'd approached some time ago to become a member, though he hadn't, at the time, identified himself as such, but as Louis King. Professor Louis King."


"Mmm, it seemed too much for the summer, but for winter…" Emma hangs the dress on the wardrobe door, bending at the waist to open a drawer at the bottom and retrieve a garter belt and snowy white stockings with silver lace at the tops. Looking up from the drawer, she twists a small smile before straightening.

"Your attorney, hmmm?" she laughs low, hooking the dress hanger around one finger, draping the whole back over her shoulder. "Well, if anyone can exonerate him, I would imagine your attorney could. Though honestly, I'm rather sore with him," she admits. "Asgard is here to 'protect' us? As if the planet needs some sort of extra-normal protection when we've evolved our own form."


Sebastian strides forward again as she bends over to check her drawers for the smaller items that will match the remarkable dress, and he reaches out to set a hand upon that lovely, slight waist of hers. "My attorney, yes. Shouldn't be a difficulty, really."

The complaint raised, however, actually gains a soft chuckle deep within his chest, and he turns to lean on her chest of drawers, eyes meeting her own. "Really.. what is the harm in allowing others to die for our cause? It's no different. Napoleon built the Foreign Legion specifically for others, not French, to come and die for France, yelling 'Vive la France' as they did so. Why not use them to purpose? If they are so willing to fight for us, why not find a direction that is suitable to our needs?" He waves a hand before it comes to rest upon the bureau. "Let's not get too emotional about it. Instead, remember.. focus on how it may be used to our benefit."


One hand occupied by hanger and stockings, Emma lets the other arm drape over his shoulder, humming thoughtfully. "The problem with gods, darling, is that they have a nasty habit of failing to die. And stealing credit." She traces a fingertip along the line of his jaw, watching the skin dent ever so slightly beneath a perfectly manicured nail, only to end with a tap on his chin.

One backward step, then another, and she turns to saunter over to a changing screen, waving that hand dismissively. "You're right, of course, there's no sense in abandoning a potential asset. But it would be wise to prepare for contingencies, lest we find ourselves being used instead." She knows. That's usually her game."

As she disappears behind the screen, the edge of the hanger peeks over, along with the stockings and garters. "Now, with the world focused on Asgardians and aliens, would be an ideal time for people to begin to see mutant kind as their saviors."


"I'm sure they can die. It's just a matter of how and to what purpose." Sebastian watches her as she steps clear of him, his gaze lingering beyond as her path takes her behind the screen to change. Now, as a gentleman, he paces, his gaze set to the middle distance before him as he does so. "If they think us defenseless, then we have the benefit of being underestimated. In that is one of our strengths. I'm certain that if we can't find a way to make it beneficial to us and our standing, perhaps we can find a way to convince this Loki that it would be to his benefit as well? He is our contact, after all." How could he not add, "And should my words fail us, I'm sure your charms could bring him around to seeing our point of view."

Though, mutant ascendancy… now, his tones drop to a murmur, loud enough to be heard, but not quite enough to pass beyond the walls. "It would be a good time, and we could offer our hand in friendship. Bygones and such. And, of course, show those that would doubt us our sincerity in the matter at hand. That we are here and will remain so… and perhaps they should be a little more kind to those who are their betters."


"Well, he is theoretically our contact," Emma notes from behind the screen, shrugging out of the robe and draping it over the screen as well. It isn't that she has any concerns about being seen in the nude. But the low lamp-light makes such a pleasant silhouette, and anticipation makes all things better.

"The offer of an attorney would be a useful one, though. Not so forward as to be an insult if he refuses. Not ourselves so as to seem subservient. It's a pleasant intermediary." The garter belt disappears next, slipped into place, followed by the stockings. "Besides, the question of the actual legal standing of an interdimensional being is something that world is going to have to work out, it seems."


Sebastian inclines his head in acknowledgment of the way Emma's walked through his thoughts on the matter. "Always better to be in the front than having to scramble to keep up. If we settle this first for this Loki fellow, then who knows what else we might settled for precidence. Just imagine.. Frost v. United States of America, argued in the Supreme Court." He makes it sound so grandiose, and it doesn't matter to him what may be the case; just that it'll make news, set precidence.. which is almost as good as law itself.

The rustling behind the divider catches his attention, and his gaze swings around in time to catch the disappearance of the garter, then the stockings. "Do you have any promising students to bring forward before the end of the year?"


"Mmmm," Emma hums, and it's for the best that he can't see her nose wrinkle from behind the screen. "They won't be ready. The Dane girl has potential, but she's a bit of a hothouse flower at the moment. Push her too hard and she'll break, but hold her back and she'll never push herself as hard as she needs to. Though finding her father seems to have galvanized her, it comes at the cost of pushing her toward him."

Stockings are rolled on, one leg at a time, clipped into place with the pristine garters. "And the Grey girl is…fascinating, actually. Incredibly powerful, or potentially so. But either she's created some sort of psychic breakwater to contain it out of fear, or she is legitimately…touched. I'm not yet willing to rule out the latter, given recent events in the world."

The hanger on the edge of the screen wiggles as she slips the delicate dress from it, holding it out for a moment just to appreciate the craftsmanship.


"Sounds … disappointing." Sebastian really does let his tones drop in the statement, but he doesn't turn away. He's quick to recover, however, and he chuckles, "All the more reason to start opening our doors to one or two new faces. See what they have to offer us." Here, his voice does begin to rise, somewhat theatrically. "And we will see where we can go from there."

His head cants as he considers, and his brows crease, "There has been some movement elsewhere, I am to understand. Mutants, certainly. Have you heard of them at all, dearest? A band of them, I think."


"Children are delicate," Emma shrugs from behind the screen. "Malleable, but delicate. Girls especially. Boys are so much simpler." Her smirk is audible in the words as she slips into the dress, making sure everything is in place before letting her hair down and shaking out the waves.

Once she's certain everything is perfect, she steps out from behind the screen, striking a pose for consideration. "The Brotherhood, I heard them called," she notes, continuing the conversation. "They do sound like active sorts. Perhaps not the brightest, but everyone can use a little muscle, no?"


Sebastian drops a hand into his pocket to take out a silver lighter, his other hand removes an enameled cigarette case, obviously in the family for a couple of generations. A cigarette is pulled, tapped on the end, then put between lips, the case closed and replaced. There is the metallic *chink* as the lighter's top is flipped open, followed by the flint upon steel, and the flame rises. The cigarete is lit, and the lighter returns to his pocket. All in the time it takes for Emma to emerge.

"Lovely. I dare say that I haven't yet seen you in that. I'd remember." Sebastian holds an arm out as if to escort; not that they're leaving the site, anyway. "The Brotherhood. Name is a good one. Nothing overtly combative. We should speak with them.. see if they have anything we may want."


"Mmmm. A little less skin, in deference to the times and the season," Emma smirks as she takes his arm, giving her hair a light flip to drape it over one shoulder. "I agree, they bear speaking with. At the very least, we should make certain they can be an asset and not a detriment to our cause. At worst, they'll at least make a convenient stalking horse so long as we understand them."

The lace tops of the stockings and the straps of the garters peek out through the slits in her skirts with every step, a hint of what lies beneath. "I think this shall be a champagne and bubble bath evening," she muses. "I deserve a bit of indulgence."


"I'll make sure the fireplaces are lit." So she will remain warm, that is. Emma is a work of art, and Sebastian is more than aware of the beauty upon his arm. "Exactly. It's so very refreshing to have you back within these hallowed halls, my dear. I was afraid that you were enjoying your life as a head mistress a little too much, forgetting about the delights of life outside a campus." He draws in the smoke from the cigarette and lets the smoke linger, touching at his nose before it is gently exhaled.

"A little indulgence now and then is never amiss. We've just recieved a new shipment of Mercier from Epernay." France. "Perhaps that will be to Mademoiselle's liking?"


"An occasional indulgence, nothing more," Emma dismisses thoughts of the school automatically, though it's habit more than truth. She could enjoy the school, if she let herself. Instead, she's convinced herself it's a petty dream for someone who ought to seek greatness.

"The Mercier sounds a much more fitting indulgence for the evening. And I thought I would look in on things here. As promising as the children may be, sometimes you simply need to be with adults." Her smile curves, hand tightening on his arm as she sways closer. "How fares the club? Any new members of interest?"


The slow stroll out into the corridor is leisurely, and Sebastian stubs out his cigarette in one of the high standing trays dotting the opulent landscape. "Well, I hope you're referring to the school as an occasional indulgence. Your attention has been missed." As if he hadn't made that abundantly clear? "But, business can wait. The Brotherhood, I am certain, can go another day without an audience. I would hear your thoughts about everything and nothing. The news, the weather, whether or not our Clicquot 1895 stands up to our Martel 1915."

To be around adults. Sebastian smiles and leans over to press a kiss at the side of her throat, and he lingers there for a moment, drawing in her scent. "The club does well." He straightens, and retakes that slow, leisurely step. "It seems the world continues to hold its breath. Not for long, though. Not for long."


Emma tilts her head to the side, baring her throat to his lips without losing a step. "No," she murmurs. "I imagine things will begin to move very quickly again. But we will be prepared." Her smile curves, a coy glint in her eyes as they begin to move again.

"Well, perhaps we simply must find more interesting people to linger here if the club is to hold my attention," she drawls. "Surely not every mutant with power is some…street-level brawler. Evolution was clever enough to find the two of us - I'm sure it must have touched others of means."


"It must have. Certainly we can't be the only." Sebastian looks thoughtful, but it doesn't take over his entire manner. It's a trifling, really. "Well, nevermind that. This evening, we rediscover your pleasures and your simple vices. Find those moments that are ever fleeting and catch them. Soon enough, we'll be concerning ourselves with such heady things as saving the world." One mutant at a time. "Until then?" There are candles to light for the lady of the Club, champagne to open…


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