Stop Investigating

July 02, 2016:

A visitor to X-Red HQ tells the team to stop looking into Hellfire Club members. Interesting …

X-Red HQ - New York

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Bobby Drake does not sleep. Or at least that's how it seems these last few days. He's been hard at work tracing the various threads of genocidal conspiracies in between filling contracts. Works' been picking up, which hasn't helped on either the time or the sleep front.

His answer? Coffee. Lots of it.

It might be making him jittery though. Or just angry. Because the next thing anyone hears in the HQ is an icy fist hitting a desk. "Goddamnit!"


"What is it?" Brins about to head out to Stark Industries to catch up with Pepper when she hears Bobby's exclaimation. Taking a good long look at the Icenerd she shakes her head "You're the one normally telling us to sleep, perhaps you should take your advice." she's quiet and very concerned.

Whilst it's unusual for Bobby to loose his temper, Brins still seen it a time or two. "What's wrong?"


Wanda made the mistake of going past the door when Bobby loses it. She stops, staring at him while cradling a hot chocolate in her hands. "Is everything okay, Bobby?" Stupid question but she doesn't know any better as she stands there in her pyjamas. Sleep has never been an issue. Sometimes there are nightmares sure but she still sleeps through them. A worried glance at Brinley before she takes some wary steps forward.


"You remember that name we got? You remember 'Hellstrike'? I made some inquiries with the authorities about him just to see if he had any kind of record. Turns out he's fled the country. Hopped on an airplane to Sokovia yesterday with nary a word to his friends or secretary." Anyone wanna bet that he found out someone had found him out?

"Sokovian authorities are understandably not eager to help-" There's a knock at the door. "Who the hell?"

Cameras sho a well dressed woman with pale skin and dark hair in a rather elegant if understate pencil skirt and blouse.


"Can't say I'm surprised, really." Brin looks too Wanda and back at Bobby. The knock at the door has her frowning. "Would you like to let our guest in, Wanda?"


"Sokovia is near Transia" Wanda points out…probably not helpfully. And then there is a person at the door and despite her state of dress she nods to Brinley. "Of course" she smiles, proud to be asked to do it. Then she spends a couple of seconds figuring out where to pu her hot chocolate before dashing off to the door. Opening it she offers a welcoming smile. "Welcome to X-Red, how can I be of assistance?"


"Miss Maximoff isn't it?" The woman's voice is quiet but carries an aura of authoritiy endemic to those used to getting their way.

"My name is Gallo. Selene Gallo. I'm here to speak with your… team, if you please."

"Wanda?" That's from the back. Bobby has decided to not hit the desk again and go get a lemonade instead. "You can show whomever it is in."


"Hello, Ms Gallo" Wanda smiles, suddenly thankful that Bobby add that comment. "Come in." She steps aside and then closes the door behind the visitor. "Not all or our team are here…oh…would you like a hot chocolate? I have just made some so it won't take long. And maybe some donuts? I should not eat donuts but they are so nice, don't you think?" She's started to babble.


Brin watches the door as Wanda opens it, listening carefully waiting till Wanda directs their guest through. "Thank you, Wanda. Ms Gallo, you wanted to speak to X-Red? I'm Brinley Myers. Bobby Drake will be us in a moment, how can we help you?"

It's certainly not unusual for people to drop by the HQ looking for them.


Bobby comes in holding an iced lemonade that wasn't iced a moment ago. "Miss… Gallo, did I hear?"

"Yes. Mister Drake. Miss Meyers." Certainly this 'Selene Gallo' seems to be familiar with them all. Not horribly surprising since they're public but a bit unusual for someone to have done this much homework.

"I'd like to know why you are investigating my compatriots." The woman looks in turn at Wanda, Brinley and Bobby.

"I… beg your pardon?" The ice nerd blinks.

"Considerate, though I am not sure if I am going to give it yet."


"Compatriots?" Wanda glances at the other X-Red members before retrieving her hot chocolate…which is not as hot as it used to be. It seems that Ms Gallo does not want one as well. "You are Sokovian?" There may be something about the woman's words that convince Wanda. An accent that is not entirely gone.


"Your compatriots?" Brin blinks and asks at the same time Bobby does. "And who might they be?" She asks quietly, but make no mistake - Selene might have an air of authority around, Brin does too.

"Perhaps you should start at the beginning. I'm sure there's some explaination." Of course, the small brunette would try to be reasonable and talk. "Are you Sokovian?" she echoes Wanda's words.


"No." Miss Gallo says as she finds a seat and makes herself comfortable.

"I've been told that you are investigating personnel and accounts related to the Hellfire Club. Those are my peers. My compatriots. We don't take interference lightly…" Her eyes turn to Wanda. The chaos mage gets a sense of whispers. They're not in English. There's a very potent 'voice' in there.


Wanda is hearing things again. A trace of an accent that doesn't exist and now voices. Not more voices. She has to take a step back from the 'attack' and 'hides' behind her mug of hot chocolate. "I do not know who the Hellfire Club are" she offers softly, anxiety obvious in her eyes thanks to the voices.

/Can you hear that?/ Wanda asks Brinley with her mind. The witch hoping that if she does then she isn't going mad…again.


"You're being told?" Brin raises an eyebrow at that. Looking to Bobby, the brunette sends a questioning look - this is about the bookie? As far as she knows neither of them have touched on the membership … yet.

"Does that mean you're a member of the club too? I'm given to believe the membership is very elite and private. Why, we've only just recently become aware of it." She's not going to admit much more just yet.

Brins not a telepath and yet she hears Wanda just fine. It's the same with Jean, actually. Focussing a little on her team mate, she lets her mind reach out … can she sense anything through her. At the same time, there's a gentle flow of emotions, reassuring Wanda.


Bobby folds his arms, still standing, and watches the interplay. There's something odd going on here.

"I am a member yes. And the Club would appreciate it if in the future you direct any inquiries into club assets through our lawyers." Selene produces a card and offers it to Brinley.

Brinley can get the emotions, Wanda the words. Selene is laser focused on what they know and why they're poking. She's not upset or angry per se, but she's quite determined to… something. She's also quite good at guarding her thoughts.

Those whispers continue and… wait. They're in Latin.


Latin is not something that Wanda knows…or wishes to know. That's all that priestly stuff and priests hate witches. Latin is full of words that spit out hate in her direction. Not to mention thoughts of Hell. "I do not know what this is about" she offers Selene honestly, thankful for the wave of calming emotion from Brinley. And the hot chocolate in her hands that she can hide behind.


It's a problem with emotions, really. The can convey so many things and yet, you might not know what's really causing them.

With another gentle push, this time it's confidence that flows over the witch … Brin can't hear the words, but she knows that Wanda is experiencing something. At the very least, she might remember the words to later share with her other two team mates.

"What is your position in the club, Ms Gallo?" Brins going to push, even through the headache that's starting, "And what if one of your members decides to speak directly to us, would I need to speak to your lawyers first?" Oh, she's being tart, as she takes the card. "You seem to be overly concerned about this."


"Other members may do as they wish, so far as the law is concerned." 'Selene Gallo' stands up. The implication that something besides the law may have something to say about that is clear. "And my position in the Club is my own concern. If you call our offices they can verify my membership." They have also, perhaps, been instructed to refer to the lawyers.

"Good afternoon."

Apparently she can show herself out. There's a swell of… something as she turns to leave. Wanda can feel it. Power. Not magic but definitely power. Whomever she is, she's not simply some rich woman with connections. Which would be troublesome enough.

Once she's gone the ice nerd blows out a sigh. "Well crap."


Wanda watches the woman leave with a combination of distaste, curiosity and concern. Thankfully no fear with Brinley's help. "She is not human" she states softly and flatly. "There is something about her. Something very not right. I heard…Latin? Words. I am sure they were coming from her but I do not know why." She closes her eyes. "I need to record them before they are gone."


"I see." Brin says quietly to Gallo. She's picked up the other implications of that statement but doesn't react. "Have a lovely afternoon, Ms Gallo." she says somewhat brightly.

"Not human? She's certainly very … controlled." Taking her tablet out and starting the audio recording app and opens a text document, Brin holds her tablet out to Wanda. "It's recording, Wanda. But you can type the words in if you need." Waiting till Gallo is completely gone, she winces "Bobby, painkillers? Please. Do you think it was about Malone?"


Bobby frowns and drums his fingers on the nearby sidebar. "Welllllll we're going to have to be more careful. Make sure those very well paid lawyers can't get us for anything. We're still going after Hellstrike though. We've got enough on him that I don't think he can defend himself. Brin, work with Wanda to see if there's an angle we can't play with the Sokovian authorities. They haven't been very cooperative but there might be something we can do." Wanda knows the area and the politcs. She can help.

The ice nerd hands Brin a bottle of motrin that he had nearby for some reason…


"I would not know how to spell Latin" Wanda notes with a smile, "So I will just say the sounds. If they make real words then this is good." With that she does her best to repeat what she heard. "Alea Iacat Est. Oderint Dum Metuant. Do you think that last word is mutant?" The other words are less distinct but Wanda does her best until she is done. "Hellstrike is related to Hellfire? And there is no point working with Sokovian authorities. We should just sneak in there."


Smiling her thanks to Bobby, Brin takes some of those Motrin. "We'll go after Hellstrike. And yes, Wanda. He's been using the club to shift money around. We're trying to find out if the club is implicit in that." her eyes meet Bobbys. Seh's beginning to think it is. "We'll becareful. We might want to get the X-Red and Berto's lawyers onboard though - be ready to fight fire with fire, so to speak."

"Why do you say that, Wanda? I'd prefer to try the legitimate way first, if we can."


"Get… Emma and Betsy onto it as well. They're members. See if there's anything they can do about Miss Gallo." Be it working around her or convincing her that X-Red's interests are really well meaning.

"Alright. I'm going to get some Pizza… and advil. I feel a headache coming on. I'll catch up with you two later." Bobby turns to head out toward his car. He needs some air.


"Bye, Bobby" Wanda waves, watching him go before looking to Brinley. "He is not a happy man…even with all the girlfriends. I suppose you will be going too? I think Vulcan is at Xavier's but I can look after the place by myself." A sip of her drink. "If you talk to the Sokovian government then they will tell the person you are after about it. That is how corruption works. It is up to you. You know these things better than me."


"He's not happy because this has been going on too long." Brin manages to smile at Wanda "We'll talk about Sokovia and work out the best approach. I've got to see Pepper." Nodding at the assertion about being able to look after the place "Of course you can look after here. Be well, Wanda. I'll see you tomorrow." And Brin heads out as well.

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