After Party in Singapore

Brief Title:
After Party in Singapore

Cybermancer, American Dream

Scene Runner/Watcher:

IC Date:
06/15/12 04:00

Hotel Ballroom in Singapore

Suzanne Endo and Shannon Carter meet by chance at a party and chat for a bit.

Social or Plot:


Singapore. The tail end of the East Asian Fashion Show and Conference. This particular party, hosted by a prominent local businesman is in full swing. Models, designers, and the local elite all mingle here. The music is loud, the refreshments are somewhat illicit, and the colored lights psychotropic. Shannon Carter, as the lead model for van Dyne Fashions, is there of course. Right now, chatting with two local businessmen who are watching her chest as much as her face. Or perhaps more. She's dressed in one of Janet's more luxurious creations and her hair and make-up are, of course, perfedct.

Endo Electronics may not be based in Singapore - it is actually based in Hong Kong - but they do business all across the world, with an amazing concentration of that in the Pacific Rim. That most definitely includes Singapore. On one of her many business trips, visiting another local company while working to cement a new and even more expansive deal, Suzi has been invited along to this particular party.

If not for her short stature, one might almost believe Suzi was one of the models tonight, and more than a few of the businessmen about certainly pay attention to her as if she were. Thus far, the smaller and darker young woman is politely, even indulgently tolerating that attention. But she seems to reach her limit, at least for now, and makes her excuses to the two men trying to decide between flattering her business skills and technical innovantions and oogling her curves in her little black dress, slipping away and heading towards the sliding glass doors which lead to the open, fern-shrouded balcony overlooking the cityscape beyond.

"Thank you." Shannon says, for the hundreth time. She, too, slips away from her admirerers. With the heels, she easily towers over everyone in the room. The closest in height to her is another model, who stands two inches shorter in her heels.

Shannon grabs a flute of champaign on her way to the balcony and inhales deeply. While the air can't be called "fresh" it is at least lacking in the mingling of perfumes, colognes, and an over abundance of Old Spice and Ax body sprays.

The smaller, darker young woman turns and looks over her shoulder, then up, up, UP to Shannon. At least she doesn't gape. Instead, she turns halfway around - having been facing off the balcony with her back virtually to the blonde - and lets her head lead the rest of the way. "If you'd like more of the view, I can step back. I just needed to get away for a few moments." she offers. Despite her appearance, she speaks with almost no accent whatsoever, using English by default since speaking to a blonde, blue-eyed model. Sure, Shannon could be Scandanavian, but she doesn't now any Scandanavian languages, so English is her best shot.

And since Shannon doesn't speak Swedish, that's a good bet. "I can see enough. Thank you. It is a beautiful city." She looks out over the city view. The lights. The traffic below. The sights and sounds of urban existence. "I know all the models here and you aren't a designer." Shannon's smile widens, "I'm guessing you're one of the other guests, then. Business leader or local celebrity."

Of course Shannon can see fine. She towers over Suzi, currently all of 5'7" in her heels, at her own 6'7". But the polite thing to do was offer. Suzi looks at the blonde, smiling warmly enough, but there is perhaps a slightly tired air. Conversations with models and the like - escorts - at functions like this can be trying. But Suzi doesn't cut Shannon off. "I do not believe I would qualify for celebrity, let alone 'local'. My own base of operations is in Hong Kong, though I am a mainland China native." She extends a hand, smiling. "Suzanne Endo, Endo Electronics. Suzi, if you will. If you will pardon me, I will guess from your stature and beauty that you must be Shannon Carter. Van Dyne Fashions, is it not?" Shannon is pretty unmistakable, really. "Before you get too impressed, I overheard another guest speaking of you earlier."

"A pleasure." Shannon accepts the other hand and shakes it gently. "Yes. Shannon Carter. van Dyne Fashions. I've heard of Endo Electronics. Mr. Stark said that your company is up and coming. Something about how he'd either have to partner with you or try to buy you out because some of your communications equipment was as good as his own."

Suzi shakes as well, smiling. But that smile gets a bit brighter when Shannon proves to have at least a brain for conversation, and potentially some interesting friends. She speaks with Anthony Stark? "Really? Well, Mister Stark is welcome to offer a partnership. Our communications tech has had to improve radically, to carry human neurological responses cleanly and efficiently. It's a vital component in our interface development pathways." Does Shannon know that means cybernetics?

"Someone thought I was a dumb bimbo..." Shannon sing-songs. "I'm not. I just play one on the runway." She winks and then says, more seriously, "What you're doing is wonderful. The potential to help people with missing limbs, the blind, the deaf... it could change their lives for the better."

Suzi chuckles softly and nods. "Well, given the sorts of women like yourself - looking like yourself, I should say - that I run into at functions like this, I'm sure you cannot really blame me. But I am pleased to be proven wrong whenever possible." And that's a genuine smile, this time. She nods. "Yes, it really could. It already is, in limited trials. Some condemn us for the military and security applications we pursue, but doing so gains us the funding and experience to accomplish the medical breakthroughs, without becoming an undue burden to the patients." Suzi likes helping people. She'd just greatly prefer not to go broke in the process.

"The unfortunate truth is, there are reasons for militaries." Shannon is never going to put down either the military or espionage. Aunt Shannon. Captain America. Perfect examples of honor and integrity in both. "I'm all for technology that will make men and women safer in the field." Even if, Suzi's company is in the territory of a nation that is potentially hostile to the US.

Suzi nods. "I too would prefer to keep them as safe as we can. It is the unfortunately reality that they must be there, and must risk themselves to protect us. The least we can do is help them any way we can. And countless of our patients in need of our help are just that - men and women who have served, giving the next-greatest measure of their devotion." Oooh. Someone quoting Lincoln. Scanalous, for a mainland China native. "A real pleasure to meet you, Ms. Carter. I can definitely see why Ms. van Dyne thinks so highly of you as a spokeswoman and model."

"Ms. van Dyne is a terrific designer. I'm lucky to be modeling her clothing." Shannon says. Her smile remains bright, "That dress is stunning by the way. Is that a Chinese designer? I don't get to see much in the way of fashions from the far east. The industry is so focused on European and American designers..."

"This?" Suzi demures, twirling slowly just so that Shannon can get a good look at the lovely little black slipdress. She owns a few more daring, but she's here - in Singapore - on a business trip, and didn't pack 'party' clothes. "Yes, actually. A small Hong Kong desire, Lei Wei Silks. Lei Wei Xian is the designer. I enjoy Chinese designers because they don't chince on petite-sized fashions. American and European designers often do." Not all, and van Dyne is one that doesn't. But the point is made.

Shannon sighs. "I know. I feel guilty, sometimes. I realize I am enforcing a lot of stereotypes with my modeling. I'm tall, blonde..." But also well muscled and not at all chic thin. If she weren't representing a major label, there are stages that would kick her off for being "over weight". "I worry I'm sending the wrong messages to little girls out there who aren't built like the She-Hulk."

Suzi cannot help but laugh a bit at that. "Little girls who aren't built like the She-Hulk? Thankfully for all of the mothers out there, those are rare, I should say. But I think you are far healthier - mind and body - than many of the women in modeling today. I find you less of the wrong message than you think. I would also guess - personally - that you are 'clean', a thing I'd say very few of the young women inside that apartment tonight can say with honesty." But she does come up with a question. "I am curiously, however. Being so articulate and clearly not simply enamored of the 'lifestyle', what is it that drew you to a career in modeling? I am sure there are so many other fields you could have entered."

Shannon glances back inside. "Most of them are nice. I try to keep them from doing too much hard stuff when I can." She admits. "I also try not to be their mom. Its a tough line to walk." She turns her gaze back to Suzi. "I enjoy it. Being up there. Showing off fashions. Looking gorgeous and having people notice me. I admit it. It is fun."

Which explains why Shannon keeps doing it, but not quite what Suzi was asking. Nevertheless, she does not pry further. "Well, it is good that you know the difference, and seek the balance. A difficult line to walk, I am sure." She purses her lips momentarily. "I suppose we all find those things about ourselves we believe can carry us beyond where we are to where we want to be, and we pursue them as best we can." A comparison, perhaps, being made between them?

"I suppose so." Shannon admits. She takes a sip of champaign and then says, "It must be hard. Being a woman in a field dominated by men." Sexism isn't as big a problem in her world as it is here but Shannon has become increasingly aware of it since arriving.

Suzi shrugs a bit. "It can be quite a challenge at times, yes. It helps, admittedly, that so many consider my work to be so advanced." Frankly, those who know anything know her to be positively /brilliant/ in her field. "But I can still find it difficult to be taken as seriously as I believe a man would be in the same position." And Suzi has been known to send a man to do the negotiating if her intel tells her the other party will be more receptive that way. "But I confess, I have also been known to use that against others at the conference table." Because if she can show up dressed like /this/, there are those who might otherwise be very intelligent who would foolishly underestimate Suzi for her looks. And she would be shameless in exploiting that weakness.

Shannon laughs. "I suppose we need to use any weapon we can." Something sits wrong with her there, though. As ironic as it sounds, the model doesn't like the idea of using her looks to distract the enemy. If she did, she'd dress more like the Black Cat and less like Captain America.

"Sometimes we do." Suzi nods, smiling wryly. "But I freely admit I would far rather never have reason or need to do so. I prefer the lab to the boardroom, and I prefer to be judged on what I can do, on my mind, and not on my ability to connive advantages for myself in negotiations." She hires lawyers for that. "Still, I will also admit that given the choice between being attractive and being not, I will take attractive and be happy about it."

Shannon can't disagree with that, as much as she would like to. As much as she would like to say looks don't matter, she's aware that she's a gorgeous, tall, blonde. "You're probably right." She admits, "As much as I would hate to say it... life is easier, in a lot of ways, if you are attractive."

"Definitely true." Suzi will admit.

Suzi stays quiet, for a bit. Perhaps she is thinking? But she sips at her own glass of champagne, and eventually amuses herself by slowly walking around Shannon, taking in the tall blonde beauty herself, and the lovely dress she is wearing. "A daring and beautiful dress. I confess, however, it is a style that would not look quite so good on a shorter frame." Though it would still look pretty good. Just not /as/ good. Suzi at least definitely has the curves to carry it off.

"You would look very good in it." Shannon stays still as she is circled. Allowing her new acquaintance to get a good view. "This is one of Ms. van Dyne's more exotic pieces. For when you want to be sure to attract attention from the room. You know how it is with the big shows. You model your most sexy pieces and the less sexy stuff goes in the smaller ones."

"Not precisely." Suzi admits, smiling. "I've never organized a fashion show, after all. But I can guess it would be so, as that is how an electronics exhibition is done as well." Relating a fashion show to an electronics expo. Bet most folks would never see the connection. "Still, you do look amazing. I can definitely see why Ms. Van Dyne chooses you, and that dress. There won't be a person here who fails to remember you and the impression you made."

Shannon smiles. "I hope so. Maybe you can consider ordering a pair of these for the booth babes you hire at the next electronics expo." Shannon's never been one but she's heard about the life from her fellow models. Mostly ones who were in that stage of their career before they "made it to the big leagues". Or the models who get hired by the very, VERY big companies.

Suzi indulges in a laugh at that suggestion. "I will keep that in mind, though I would prefer to avoid such direct comparisons with Tony Stark." It's all in good humor, though. Being compared to Tony Stark, in almost any way, is a good thing, rep-wise. Mostly. But his rep as a womanizing lech is pretty legendary, and not nearly as positive. "I'll at least mention it to my Director of Marketing." And Suzi does just that, pretty easily. She lifts her phone from her tiny clutch and speaks rapid-fire Mandarin. The phone beeps, then responds in Mandarin, and there is a telltale 'whoosh' sound, as a message makes its way. Apparently a woman of her word. "What else do you do, then, Shannon? Or is the modeling a full-time thing for you?" Some are mothers and wives. Others give themselves entirely to 'the life'. And others have pretty interesting side projects: singing, acting, extreme sports. There are rumors that a few are even 'super-heroes'.

"Oh, I like to stay in shape." Shannon says as she makes a muscle. A mockery of guys who like to flex and show off. "I'm also a volunteer tour guide at a few of the local museums." Something she learned to enjoy from her days playing tourguide at Avenger's Mansion. In her world, the Mansion was a museum. Here, of course, it isn't open to the public.

Suzi smiles. "Obviously, you are in excellent shape." That might have been a comment about her shape, rather than her muscles, per se. Or maybe not. It's hard to tell. "I imagine you make a wonderful tour guide. Everyone can see you, and hear you. And you'd have no problem keeping most of their attentions."

Shannon laughs. "Yes. I'm very tall. More than one person has asked me why I don't play for the WNBA." Or any sport, really. Since the truth is, Shannon could be an Olympic athlete if she really wanted. A world champion and gold medalist. "Hazards of good genes, I guess. The Carter women tend to be well built."

"Aren't we all the hazards of good genes?" Or bad, one supposes. Suzi has certainly done alll she could to capitalize upon and develop her intellect, putting it to work for her, but she started with the gift of it to begin with. One supposes the likes of Reed Richards, Tony Stark and Victor von Doom all did the same. "I presume you chose this over a sport because you enjoy this more?"

"I do, yes." Shannon admits. After all, what sport could compare to the thrill of taking down a badguy with a well aimed shield toss? "I did gymnastics for a while but it just wasn't the same and, truth be told, I'm not built for professional competition." Not like those tiny Chinese girls.

Then again, neither is Suzi, long ago having left behind the proportions of a gymnast. "A gymnast. Well then, that does explain your exceptional grace." More compliments, but just as genuine as the others. "I am opening offices in New York. I shall have to look up Ms. van Dyne. Perhaps she can design something for me." And perhaps she can meet Shannon again. One never knows.

Shannon's eyes widen in surprise. "That's interesting. I'm sure we'd love to have you in New York City. And Ms. van Dyne is always on the look out for clients with exceptional taste. Especially if they are willing to let her experiment a little."

"Is it?" Suzi offers, smiling. Is it really so interesting? "When one is looking to expand internationally, There are but a few places in the world that act as a hub for such growth. I started in Hong Kong. New York is really the next stop." In truth, she has headquarters in other countries, but the core has always been Hong Kong. Only the expansion to the US in New York offers the possibility that it might take over to become the dominant hub of the company. "And given that I am an engineer, I think it can be taken for granted I am always willing to experiment. I can only hope she will find my taste exceptional enough."

Shannon laughs. "I am sure she will." She finishes her champaign and closes her eyes. She never drinks enough to get drunk, of course, but it is nice to feel the slight buzz that comes from a single glass of alcohol. "Actually, you might inspire her. She's dabbling in "geek chic" or something this week."

"Geek chic?" Suzi comments with just a tiny lilt of questioning in her voice, smiling at Shannon. "And is that what you see in me? A chic Geek?" Still, some of Suzi's designs would be excellent additions with a designer like Janet to perfect their outward appearance and appeal. Glasses that connect to to one's smartphone, providing an external front-facing camera, sound through the temples, and HUD and LED screening in the lenses themselves, paired with a filament boom mic and eye-tracking interface options would be pretty popular in a high-tech pedestrian corridor like New York, if they also /looked cool/. "I think perhaps I like that."

"Intelligence is sexy. Or, at least, it is in an Apple and Stark sort of way." Shannon says. "Its all about the packaging. Since everyone is using technology these days and, since, once upon a time only the very smart people used tech like this..." She shrugs and lets Suzi fill in the blanks. Everyone is smart. And that MUST mean smart is sexy.

"Ah. Yes. Apple, and Stark. But ... it's possible." To be fair, Suzi has never been as worried with the outside, with the 'chic' or 'cool', as she has been with the guts and capabilities. But maybe a designer like Jan really could make the difference. It would be ... impressive. "I am glad to know that you consider intelligence to be sexy. I have always found that the sexiest part of anyone is what is 'between their ears', I believe is the English idiom?"

Shannon laughs at that. "Yes. I agree. The mind and the imagination. A great body isn't much without those." She pauses, then adds. "Not that a great body isn't wonderful. I mean, have you seen Thor or Hercules?" She laughs. "Woof."

"A great body can be a work of art, granted." Suzi offers, smiling. "But what makes it truly /sexy/ is the mind within it." And Suzi can definitely understand why it is so many are so attracted to Shannon, for she has a lovely mind /and/ what others would call a 'smokin' bod'. "I have seen a few images of Thor and Hercules. Or the 'Captain America'. Quite physically attractive men."

Shannon nods. "I've... had a chance to see them up close a few times." She admits. "Living in New York City and working for Ms. van Dyne." Who is, after all, very public in her identity as the Wasp. "They are... wow."

"Perhaps then I will get my chance to see these fine specimens up close, while I am in New York." Suzi comments, smiling with what can only be girlish glee. Meeting them, or at least seeing them, would be pretty amazing. Even if she wouldn't try to date either of them. "As you say, they must be quite ... wow." Is she teasing? Not really, but her voice takes on a teasing tone as she plays along with the conversation. "And have you ever dated one of them? The Avengers, I mean? Since you seem to have met so many. Or perhaps Mister Stark? Given his connections with Iron Man, I imagine you've met him more than once." Given her words about him earlier.

Shannon laughs, shaking her head. "I haven't dated Mr. Stark, though Ms. van Dyne has. I haven't dated Thor or Hercules or any of the Avengers." She slides her fingers through her hair, wincing a bit as she catches a bit of hair sprayed hardness. "I forgot. They did up my hair for the show."

Suzi chuckles softly, sharing the laugh with Shannon, and nods, accepting her words. She gives a sympathetic little moue at the wince. "I confess, I prefer to avoid such professional styles for just that reason. Sometimes, however, the occaission will accept nothing less." And as a model, obviously that comes up more often than for a techie CEO. Suzi glances towards the door back to the party. "Perhaps we should get back in there, hmm? I imagine they're starting to miss you."

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