Hot Tub Dalliances

November 18, 2015:

Fracture and the Baroness canoodle and meet a new perspective Cobra ally.



NPCs: Zayin, Servant Kid,



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

The compound in Madripoor is expansive. Acres span along a cliffside staring down at the ocean that erodes away at the edge, threatening centuries of eradication of the invading land mass with a large manse dropped upon its edge. No success yet, but it was precarious enough for Baroness to buy and renovate. But not for the large hosing structure, moreso for the land itself. Stretches of acres are made into a military compound around the house suiting barracks and additional housing as well as ranges. The numbers are up and where during her disappearance it seemed they dwindled and faded it was a ruse. They were searching, and when she returned, so did Cobras continuation of preparations.

Outside of the gated compound the training did not stop, geurilla warfare is tried and expressed there because it too belongs to her all in the name of her company. So as SUVs and trucks sweep in and out over the rugged terrain they are watched, checked and cleared.

Training and condition for the best from one end to the other, even in the basement of that luxurious homestead.

After the skirmish outside of her Naja Ports, Baroness made a few calls. Cobra was not only here, and sometimes the woman can play well with others, or pay them high enough to talk without dragging their tongues through slit throats.

A name had been given and she did the required transfer for this.. Storm Shadow to join among her ranks. Now just to await his arrival, and without telling her team. Let's see how he fares, and how they fare. Sometimes training was a brutal thing.

While she waited, this time she expressed some patience and enjoyed the moment with a former accomplice, leaning back in the hot tub that extended off of the pool, a tray of delicacies served as well as a tray of small alcohols and glasses offere to her and Veruca while she rested back against the ledge of the steaming and roiling pool, elbows propped ipon the ledge while from that bent joint on up fleshy exposure became abruptly mechanical, clawed fingers curled inward in epose despite the winding of wires, working of mechanical 'coils' and the structured tubing of veins that networked her replaced appendages.

"I do hope this response is better then that of the SHIELD one. But even best laid plans…"

"…often times come together, or cause a lot of people to bleed." Veruca comments, her skin an odd touch color pale as the bathing suit she wears is nothing but skin to not hide the shame or anything underneath. Dark brown hair nearly smatters against her bare back, longer than before.. seems her little vacation has treated her well in Madripoor and the excursion to the states to do some harm actually livened the spirits.

But this new one, a new soldier to join the ranks where she herself was just a newling, someone who did things at the whim of herself and often times the whims of the Baroness should she let her come and call.

She liked that about Cobra. Come when you feel but when you're called, do please?

Storm Shadow doesn't announce his arrival. He doesn't RSVP or ask permission. He gets no codes or passwords, no special access granted. The security here is stiff, no doubt, technology and human personnel working in unison to create a steel wall capable of keeping out all but the most nimble, the most impossible, the most deadly of assassins.

But, of course, that's precisely what Storm Shadow is.

The two guards standing nearby, loitering towards the entrance to this guarded place, suddenly slump, falling to the ground, with darts in the sides of their neck. Shadow drops down from above them, stepping over their carcasses as he makes his way over to where the Baroness sand Veruca lounge.

"You called for me, Baroness, and I have come. I see you already have one killer in your back pocket," he says, offering a formal and measured bow to Veruca. He knows the reputation of the Hero Killer all too well.

"… I like that analogy." A small quirk at one corner of lips, the mirth only showing in the flash of canine and aligning molars where a hooked fang could have rested, instead it came in other forms. The small glass of vodka on ice is brought to lips and there it pauses, those frigid depths looking up and out.

One mirror holds position, a reflection to behind her and another to bounce to inside the doorway where Zayin stands now, holding a tablet that shows the sudden shifts in two of their mens vital signs. But just as he had arrived, so had Storm Shadow.

The vodka is pushed back and downed in one kick back, the glass set upon the tray and slid aside. Bare shoulders roll, the toned and sinewed contours of musculature beneath shin shifts and arms extend out to drop the rhythmic tapping of metallic nails over cement eave.

"Join us, Storm Shadow." One hand rises and hestures to opposing Veruca in the hot tub while a housekeep boy no older then 15 comes forth with more beverages of choice and stands waiting, staring dead ahead.

"I also employ Taskmaster." The Baroness settles for nothing /less/. "Do not mind the boy, he is deaf, just waiting to see if you need anything."

"I give nothing but the best."

Her little drink is something self created, a cross from a bloody mary to absinthe with a hint of jolly rancher.. while disgusting, hits it where it hurts and makes it feel all the more alive. The glass was settled for the motion, the motion of the corner of her eye where Zayin approaches and Storm Shadow is revealed. Her brows furrow for just a touch as she rises to a stand in all of her full glory; a faint hint of runage glowing upon her skin as eyes slowly bleed to black, back arched and tense as shoulders draw back and nearly split at the seams to bleed glass but.. it stops.

So this is him.

Like nothing, everything fades away and she as what she once was, settling back into the water, shoulders deep before the boy approaches, thankful that eyes remain averted to her au'naturale form. A flick of the wrist in the form of a wave happens, and a slight smirk given towards Baroness. "Whom I have yet to meet." She says of Taskmaster. "Perhaps it's all kept apart and separate for a reason." No question there, just a note.

Storm Shadow keeps his eyes still and dead, carefully not showing a reaction to Veruca's display. Some play their cards close to the vest - Storm Shadow doesn't even let you know he's playing. He moves to the edge of the tub and fluidly, his legs fold beneath him, shifting him into the lotus position as he moves to sit down next to the steaming tub and the beautiful women who inhabit it.

"Taskmaster possesses a formidable reputation. Of course, when one challenges SHIELD, one needs the sharpest weapons," he says. Word of Baroness' provocation was circulating within espionage circles, of course, and Storm Shadow always kept his ear close to the ground. He dismisses the servant boy, assessing him as harmless enough.

"All deadly, but each with their own gifts. With you, then, Baroness, at the head of the snake?" he says, cocking his head.

Veruca's display only makes that small flash of a grin grow, peeling pillows of flesh from ivories in a manner that gleans between beastial and silent laughter. Cards close? Very. Zayin has already faded back out into the backdrop, observing silently, but that is of his ilk when it comes to the Night Creepers.

"Oh, no you will meet him in time. I just have some," The pause comes with a languid stretch, her spine bowing against the back of the hot tubs wall. "Kinks to work out. Until then he trains my troops." The /why/ is left out, but not for much longer.

"My call to SHIELD did just what I wanted it to. They revealed their approach and I gave them what they -wanted-. But they revealed some of themselves in this and it appears they have someone on their team that /knows/." Her gaze seems to rest boredly upon two metal fingers that work together and when they pause her eyes return to Veruca and then Storm Shadow.

"Much like you but in black. Ring a bell?" A well manicured brow rises and then she drops the hand back to the tray of goodies, drawing back a small knife to cut at the block of cheese - speaking as she does so.

"Political games are simply the best to play. But with politics is war, especially when those involved in the 'check' do not accept gifts well. The HYDRA man was meant to either assuage them or incite them. Maybe I should have left him in less pieces. But, nu chto," Oh well, the Russian dialect flowing and her accent growing with her ire.

"Now both sides know what happens when you play with the Cobra, and imagine the surprise…" From Veruca back to Storm Shadow. "It's kismet."

Thoughtful was the gaze that she gives Storm Shadow, lips puckering out and twisting as the drink was taken and ofted up towards the boy so that another could be put within its place. A signal with one hand, fingers moving fast as the boy watches, and with a sharp nod, he was off. He was going to bring her a regular martini. The froo-froo concotion was making her blood boil.

But all of this talk of SHIELD did not bore her, but she remained quiet as business was discussed, turning her back to those to tend to her own tray of fruits and raw veg to piece and peel, dip and make something new and delicious. But she was delicate in her approach, not one to mash into mouth, but carefully pluck with razor sharp teeth that remain hidden from benefactor and comrade alike. "Nnh. SHIELD." She finally states, once she swallows her food.

"I plan to give them a further deliverance and pull out into the open in a few days time." For you play with the Cobra.. you get burned. And strung up, and played with in return. She turns, looking over her shoulder from one to the other, imagining someone like Storm Shadow but.. in black? Hm. She can totally see it. All of their kind come a dime a dozen, some of them just wear it well.

"So, there's another one of you out there is it?" She laughs just a little, "You need to fix that." Beat. "Soon."

Storm Shadow maintains his stolid, effortless calm almost entirely - except for the mention of the other him. He knew that his blood brother played the hero still, of course - he always kept track of him, from a distance, although even from that range he could feel Snake-Eyes' judgment upon him. He flinches, just a bit at his mention, the barest narrowing of his eyes.

"Yes. I know of whom you speak," he says in his even, crisp English. "He will die in time. My time." he says.

"SHIELD think themselves knights, playing with their round table and looking to do deeds of valor. When we finish with them, they will realize that they are nothing but pretenders in paper armor, bloodied and trampled. Politics, war, call it what you will. If blood is to be spilled, then I shall be the one spilling it."

Stabbing a strawberry upon one of those claws, Baroness pushes from her place along the wall of the tub and nears Veruca, that stabbed fruit upon razored tip offered before her lips, dripping the crystalline frigid droplets of marinated vodka from its ripe embodiment.

With this proximity she caught that flinch, from periphery her eyes lingering upon Storm Shadow she speaks. "Your time? That will only be promised if it is not on /my/ cost and he stays his distance from me. Ravage is not programmed to obey matters of the heart."

As Baroness speaks though the part of the offered strawberry begins to wither, melt, and cave in on itself, those droplets of vodka running red as if the fruit was bleeding forth nectar…. That would /burn/. Through the hoses of veins that work through her cybernetic arm green traces its course.

"Hrm. Monev has to work on the pace of the venom." A side flick of fingers and the fruit had fully liquified, spattering across the sidewalk in congealing chunks of crimson.

"HYDRA called the wrong snake from the basket. And from one head I intend to make many." Exiting the tub and as she passes between them her hands drop and draw over cloth and skin of shoulders, then away in that parting caress.

A gesture and the deaf child comes to her with a large black robe, the enbroidery upon it oriental, but within the fine fall of blossoms and leaves, instead of a dragon the hooded serpent seems to devour, and when focised upon is the only real thing in the entirety.

"Make yourself at home, I am sure Veruca can show you all of the /fun/ things we offer."

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