2012 05 29 Conference Chat

Log Title:
Conference Chat

Empath and Sebastian Shaw

IC Date:
May 29, 2012

Conference Room - Hellfire Club - New York

Brief Log Summary::
Shaw and Empath chat up about things and Empath learns a lesson and reveals some stuff.


There is no TS in this log::

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Some giggling can be heard from the Conference Room, as two of the Hellfire maids finish adjusting their uniforms. A grin forms on Empath's face as the girls finish their little show. "Thank you, ladies. You will surely get raises for that fine performance." He bows his head as he himself is dressed in the formal uniform worn by most of the elite members of the club. The girls bow and then make their way out of the Conference Room, still giggling giddily like school girls. For his part, Manuel exhales a sigh of extreme relief, "Membership does indeed have its privileges." He looks over at the large screen as he ponders how to go about using some of the technology in this room.

"How fortunate, don't you think, that our staff understands and embraces our lifestyle, Manuel?" a familiar voice sounds from near the door. Shaw is dressed in his 'Club uniform', no coat today, but a very elegant vest over his white shirt, "And how have you been?" he asks, you can feel the emotions coming from him, a low-key sort of satisfaction and, towards you, a small undercurrent of genuine concern.

It is one of those rare moments when Empath does not feel like a child who has been caught by a parent, “Yes, I am fortunate to be a member of a club that promotes a healthy sense of…activity. And the help are always willing to help in that sense…and to think I did not have to nudge them empathically.” He turns to face his king, “I have been busy. The school has kept me busy watching over the newest Hellions. And, I believe your son is up to his old tricks. Though I cannot be certain.”

Shaw's features darken momentarily at that, and you don't need to be the most powerful receptive empath in the world to know what he's feeling, "He's had his chance." the big man says with a mild air of finality, "Some things I am disinclined to let go." He walks further into the room, and notes, "Besides, I have other proteges that havbe proven far less disappointing." He's being generous today, it seems.

“Yes, well as the best of your protégés…” Yes he is an egotist. “Your son’s attempts on my life have lost their entertainment value. I would like to see whatever conflict with the two of you resolved soon. Perhaps some family therapy…I have been told I would make a great counselor.” Manuel hmmmns softly and then changes to other matters, “I must also commend you and Selene, on your choices for faculty at the school. Between Magneto’s lap dog and the demon X-Man. It seems peculiar…whatever little scheme you royals are planning. It would be nice to be included.”

Shaw takes a moment, considering, he's not shielding anything in terms of emotions from you, not 'leveling' it out deliberately. There is pride, and a bit of genuine trust…but only a little, he's explained the neccessity of that, after all, "It's culture and philosophy, Manuel." he begins, "You see, one thing I have learned from Emma is that when you teach the younger generation, you imprint your values on them - values they carry out into the world. If they are powerful and influential, the effect of this ripples." His lips crease upwards in a slightly predatory smile, "And Xavier's brood has been -enough- of a nuisance and impediment to us in the past. By being the 'reasonable' ones, we damage their philosophical base, striking at the very -heart- of their misguided 'dream'."

Half buying what Shaw is saying, but half suspicious, due to his own nature and half due to his learning to never fully trust Shaw and his cabal. “Very well…but be warned. You had better establish a strong leash on Magneto’s dog and Xavier’s dog. Mr. du Paris and Nightcrawler seem to have their own agendas. As much as we may believe we have their under control. They may simply be plants for their factions. Throw in the Asgardian goddess, and one or all of them may prove the end of the Hellfire Club.” He looks away a moment and to consider his next words, “But I trust you genuinely have our best interests at heart. So, I shall, of course, play the part of the dutiful student as I watch over this next generation of Hellions, of which we have a new member.”

"du Paris is dangerous." Shaw says simply, "He is a nightmarishly powerful zealot with little experience in the real world. He is a weapon, an atomic bomb that talks." such respect, hm? "So long as he can be useful, it's better to keep him under -our- watch than Magneto's…who has been disconcertingly quiet as of late." He sits in his signifier chair, getting comfortable, "Amora is…able to be trusted, ironically, to a great extent -because- she is an Asgardian. She has an excessively long view of things and in a way, this is a game to her. Which helps us." he chuckles, then notes, deliberately, "And don't think she's worked any of her charms on me either, young man. I -know- better. A delight to look at, but unsafe to touch."

“Yes, I had a one on one with du Paris. He seems to think Magneto will be the savior of the world, putting mutants on top and destroying everything in his path until we are the dominant species. Admirable, but a bit too…as you say, zealous. And for a brief moment, I was genuinely afraid of him.” A surprise admission from Empath. When Shaw reveals he has remained free of Amora’s enchantments, a wry grin forms on his face, “Indeed a delight to look at…And I am not one to advise you on the abilities of women and their manipulations, but even you may not be able to hold out much longer. Should she choose to…have her way with you…Well, I will be even more impressed with you than I already am.” The grin remains on his face, “So we have a new Hellion, Armand S.A. Pierre. He is a Chaetokinetic. A relatively useless power, but he was helpful when your son’s little creation tried to kill me…again.”

"Racism is racism…amazing that a man on the reciving end of Naziism's worst excesses is -so- eager to round others up into camps, isn't it?" Shaw notes, as for women…"Ha. I've so far managed to resist The Black Queen, and Emma is one of my closest friends now. I think I can handle the Enchantress. The more jaded one is, the safer." at the new arrival's information he cocks a brow, "A rarity…I know of only -two-, and one wasn't even mainline human-based. We'll see what we can do with him, hm?" For a moment he pauses, his emotions ordering themselves, subduing… "I did wish to speak with you about the unfortunate business with your father-" he raises a hand before you can reply, "and do not, for a moment, image this is for the purposes of leverage. I am being, in all seriousness, sincere. We very much mean what we say when we speak of the company of peers and the benefits of genuine comraderie." Ball's in your court, it seems.

Ready to speak off extemporaneously to Shaw as his expression sours when Shaw dares to mention his father. With the Black King’s raised hand, Manuel catches himself and listens. Not able to fully grasp at Shaw’s emotions. Manuel waits, pauses, and seems momentarily lost in thought. “My father has passed away. Assassinated by your son. I have not returned the favor.” He exhales, “I have not yet found the time to work out issues with his estate. I have spoken with my mother briefly and she is coping as best as she can. The irony of the situation, being able to control emotions and yet being unable to assist her with the ordeal. I appreciate the sincerity, Shaw. I have actually learned from you and Emma. It is best to treat the world as cold and barren place. Devoid of any real relationships. The few that we have, get cut so easily.” He sighs, “It is best to lose myself in Hellfire Club and Hellion business than to let a weakness such as dealing with his passing and the passing of the Hellions.”

"Life is meaningless without some measure of emotional satisfaction, Manuel." the older man says carefully, "Do not imagine we are best served by isolating ourselves utterly, or denying a very basic need for companionship." He's past the point where saying such things is awkward for him, he long ago reconciled his own nature with the grief he felt…there is a spike of old loss there for a moment as he thinks of Lourdes.

"It is only weakness if you let it be. Accept it and incorporate it into yourself. You know very well I have tasted loss - people talk, after all, and I have not allowed it to become a weakness, nor have I forgotten." he then admits, "Harry Leland was my friend. Tessa told me I owed my life to him -" a wry smile, "- despite the method he used to do it. I still find myself missing his joi de vivre about the place."

"Yes, I am familiar with your losses." Manuel implying he has heard of Lourdes, but perhaps also implying there is an admitted sense of regret with Shaw's relationship with Shinobi. His eyebrow quirks when he senses the sincerity and the sense of bereavement for Leland. "So, how did you deal with it?" He takes a seat next to the Black King around the Inner Circle's table, "You've lost more than Leland. And yet, I have never sensed anything from you. Or to be honest any of the Inner Circle any sense of loss or regret. Emma stood by as my friends passed away and yet there is nothing from her. You all give off a sense of coldness and ice that makes you all seem more frigid than the Artic itself. None of you have mourned their deaths. Selene sets up a new school. You suddenly re-emerge. And Emma ran to Xavier's." He hmmmns, "Shaw, I am trying my best to believe that behind all the power is a man who feels. But you laid silent while my friends passed away. Yes, you have lost Leland. You lost your wife. Your son is…what he is. But for a man who knows loss. You were oddly quiet and non-present when the Hellions died. In a way, I see all of you as partially responsible for failing to protect them."

Shaw's eyes cut ideways to you for a moment as he considers how best to answer that, "Is that an honest response?" he asks rhetorically, "Well. To be honest myself, I blame Magneto, at least in part. But you want to know the secret, is that it?" He leans back a bit, his massive shoulders rolling back against the chair, "Acceptance. To feel is not weakness, to let it control you is. I can sincerely tell you I felt grief when I lost Lourdes-" how easily he talks of it now! "But I then used it, transformed it in the crucible of myself and Buckman and his Inner Circle didn't live to see the end of the week."

What he asks next almost seems mocking, but his emotions are anything but, "Would you see us weeping at the gravesides of Sharon or Haroum. Jennifer or Marie-Ange? Would you think Emma wailed and tore her hair? Of -course- not. But neither are we ignoring it, are we? Much of what we are doing now is -because- of that loss."

It clearly was an honest response, though he dared never to utter it before. He seems ready to interrupt again, but pauses when Lourdes is mentioned and out of respect, he remains quiet and lets Shaw continue, “I would think you and Emma incapable of lamenting.” Snide remark, but cutting. “Shaw, you blame Magneto. But do you honestly expect me to believe that you were not aware of what was going on while you were ‘exiled’. Magneto is an excuse that you can use. Convenient in that he was technically king. But Shaw, you are far more resourceful and powerful than to have simply sat idly by while Magneto ruled. I do not want to see you crying out for revenge at the loss of the Hellions.” Standing up quickly as the chair he sat on falls over and he speaks in a heightened tone, not yelling, but clearly excitable, “All that you are doing is because of that loss. I understand that. But Shaw, they never should have been lost to begin with. It was YOUR fault. It was Emma’s fault! Even Selene! I not only cry for the loss of my friends. I cry because the people who were supposed to protect us. The people who were supposed to guide us…failed! I will protect this new group of Hellions…but how can I honestly know you all won’t fail again?”

The Black King answers quietly, his tone carefully neutral, "You don't. If you could know that, then we'd be omniscient, wouldn't we?" His emotions are becoming more subdued, "At least you're being up-front about it." he doesn't seem at all to mind that you're overtly blaming him along with the others, "It was a calculated risk, to give him his leash. I never thought he'd be so disinterested. I never imagined his ability to see only the cause and -none- of the individuals was so advanced." he shrugs, not dismissively.
"So blame us then. We -did- fail. We've failed before. Ask Emma about the Phoenix sometime, or Wyngarde, if you can even -find- him." He carefully raises a hand and gestures to you, "So what are you going to -do- about it?" it's not a challenge, it's a -question-.

An admission. While there is no guilt in Shaw’s response, Manuel speaks truthfully without an obvious manipulation, “I play my part. The Club is changing. While there is no guarantee the mistakes of the past will be repeated. You have made actual improvements. I am not an active member of the Inner Circle. I can be there when you and the others make your moves. I can offer input and decide for myself what is a good move and what is not. IF you have taught me anything, it is to associate with powers greater than mine. The Club has been revived once Magneto was gone. These new members, while dangerous, are powerful enough to protect the students, despite their clearly subversive agendas.” He goes to pick up the chair that dropped when he rose and takes a seat again, assuming a more peaceful mood. “I must admit my fault. And also Angelica’s and James’. We were a part of thr group and were not present when the attack occurred. Perhaps had we been there, things would have turned out differently. Or perhaps we would be dead with them.” He exhales. “But you are right acceptance is what is needed. I accept what happened to them and I shall grow from it.”

Shaw nods slightly, listening carefully, "One can never know, can one? Even precognitives see -likely- results, nothing definite. It just doesn't work that way." He adds, "Blame us if you want, but never be anything less than honest with -yourself- about it. And if you like, with us as well - well, careful around Selene. Some 'people' don't take criticism well." good advice.

"It is a shame they're dead. They all had such potential, Sharon and Haroum in particular, in my estimation." Interesting, that. "And I am not heartless, but I can do nothing about it now, can I? In our business, mistakes get people killed." he chuckles quietly, "Then again, deliberate action does as well, as you've seen." the mugger, funny how he comes up again, "We play many games, but when we don't -" he lets it hang there for a moment, "If you want to guide the world…and perhaps more than this world, you risk much. Every student is taught this. You know very well why we taught you all to defend yourselves."

Nodding his head in agreement with what Shaw says, “You speak the truth, my king.” A quizzical expression forms on his face when he thinks back to the death of the mugger and his own recent encounter with a rather rude bus driver. A half smile and then another nod, “All true. It is odd. Angelica, James, and myself. We are still here and yet we have all gone different routes. Angelica with those idiots at the New Warriors and James with the terrorist Cable and X-Force.” He shakes his head a moment as he remembers, “Oh…I am not sure if this would interest you. There is some sort of…excursion X-Factor will be taking to the Savage Land. It appears Cable is up to no good…at least that is what Nightcrawler believes. James has sought out the assistance of X-Factor.”

Shaw seems to perk up a bit at the discovery of 'new business', "The Savage Land? There are a great many beings with secret agendas at the bottom of the world. Cable does nothing without some plan for the future. He's obsessive about it. Maybe we'll arrange a little field trip, get our minds off of melancholy matters, hm? I'll see what up-to-date intelligence we have about the place."

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