The Uninvited Consultant

June 20, 2017:

Sizani is assigned to impose herself on Tony Stark and Rusalka in typical Wakandan fashion.

Stark Tower - Tony's Lab

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Black Panther

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

New York, New York.

Stark Tower.

For New Yorkers, it is a beautiful spire representing wonder unbound. A place where a miracle worker works his trick, and the news reels tell the rest: A hero is born, and he works to make the world a better place.

But not everyone in the world wants it so, nor needs it.

The guards are good, attentive, but the prevalence of Stark Tech among trusted employees means that swiping a phone instead of a badge is not exactly head turning, even if the owner of the phone certainly is. From there, it begins in the elevator, the Kimoyo card stretched just a little larger thanks to it's molecular malleability and a holographic infiltration program thrown at the elevator panel.

The door opens on a floor that it should not - not for her, not without a special authorization.

Where ever Tony and Sally are in the expansive lab, they may not notice the immediate click of her heeled boots on the floor, a subtle change of footwear that will make her tower over everyone else in the room by a few inches or more. She does not stop until she reaches a bank of computers and holographic displays, setting her Kimoyo card in mid-air, where it locks against Earth's gravity and becomes immobile. Moments later, the holographic displays will be overlayed with Wakandan insurgent programs, and JARVIS will speak up, with an oddly delighted tone.

"Why, I.. I never! That tickles!"

That would be Sanura, her own adored AI. She could no more harm JARVIS than she could an innocent human being, and so, she allows Tony's friend some alone time in the void of cyberspace… with a cat.

A hand rises as she watches, looking over security feeds and measures, in full view of anyone watching, one arm tucked across her chest, the other lifting, a manicured nail tapping to one violet-painted lip as her eyes narrow and she does what she was sent here to do.

She judges Tony Stark's security.

What Sally is about to get is a sudden education in an annoyed Stark. Which could be good for her continuing education. Or it could send her off running for the door.

Its Tony. Its hard to tell.

What does happen though is, as Tony is working on his new engine design and Sally is working on…well Tony is assuming its something to do with cars…the inventor will look up with a very flat look on his face as a single chime sounds.

"Cover yours ears a sec, bunny." He says as he grabs a towel and wipes off his hands. Should she do that? He will launch into a short but very colorful series of curses in a half dozen different languges that seem to flow seemlessly into each other.

Then there is a deep breath taken as he jerks his head towards the elevator. "We have guests." And about that moment there is a ding.

And the sound of those heels.

So what meets the good lady at her entrence to the cavernous space that is Tony's personal lab. One that he shares with only a few people. Cluttered with supertech and take out trays is one very annoyed Mister Stark.

Tapping one foot as she goes though his own security systems.

One eyebrow, arcs up as his arms cross over his chest. The right arm encased with what looks like half-built armor for a new suit. The glow of the ARC reactor gleaming off blue-grey metal.

"So. Can we help you, or do you and your king just show up and try to cause international incidents on a whim. I mean god would it kill you all to make a damn appointment like normal people? It's not like I'd say no. But no, you always just have to break in. Show off. Wave your fancy tech around in my face." A beatpause. "Oh wait, did you come to explain why your boss wears perfume? I'm totally interested in that one."

Cars, yes. Specifically working out the power throughput questions she'd been fighting since she first took Tony's internship exam and ran into his trick question. Since then, she'd attacked it when she can, asking questions about what she didn't know (a lot) and then putting it together with what she did (which became a lot). At least she hadn't been a troublesome student.

Running for the door? Not quite. When he says cover her ears, she does - because god knows what's coming next. A terrible electronic shriek of something, an unmuffled engine running, or…or Tony Stark proving his New York native cred. When he jerks his head, she drops her hands - and then looks to the elevator as the tall woman steps out.

Unlike Tony, she's not wearing anything armored - just being a moderately fashionably dressed young woman, sporting a Ferrari shirt and jeans. Sally looks up, one finger brushing loose bangs away from her face, taking in this new person - who, very clearly, was not supposed to be here. She's about to ask what's going on before Tony launches into his questions. Hostility…definitely. Damn, and she'd left her ICER in her purse across the room.

Instead she just lets her hand close around a metal ruler, a long one.

"Mr. Stark? The perfume king…the one, last month…?" The one that had kicked Tony's ass literally into the elevator, admittedly. She just is a little too diplomatic to say that. Then she turns her attention to their visitor. Sokovian accent, clearly, but not as thick as one new to the United States would be. Aristocratic, too. "May I help you, ma'am?"

It's clear that Sizani anticipated intervention, and though Stark lets loose with a long variety of typical American responses to the situation, the Dora Milaje does not falter in her evaluation. Her eyes narrow a little more, staring at the cage in the basement, and the readout that governs it's security. She even scrolls through the historical logs, all the way back to the night that her King came to this place to stand face to face with A Devil.

The audacity of Kings. She has never known anything else quite like it.

The hand at her mouth drops when Tony moves past various curses and begins asking his rapid fire series of questions, all the while ruminating on why they feel they need to insist. Her left foot shifts back, and her body pivots to face the man, at last giving him her attention. Sally receives little more than a glance. Or does she? Somewhere to Sally's left, there is something.

An odd motion. Perhaps a distortion against the air. It is hard to even gauge it's distance, and it is moving. Stalking. Circling.

The scrutinizing green of Sizani's eyes sweep downward, taking measure of Tony Stark in much the same way as she took measure of his security. Finally she speaks, her accent similar to her King's, but not exactly the same. "Despite what your ego may tell you about this enterprise you have domain over, it is not a country. I would imagine the United States values a good relationship with my country far more than it values a good relationship with you."

She steps forward then, and reaches out to brush an errant speck of dust from one of Tony's shoulders. "I come to you as you would come to a child who has captured a large snake it thinks to keep for a pet. There are lessons to learn in this mistake, but they should not be fatal ones. You do not ask a child, full of wonder and of it's own superiority, for an appointment. You do what must be done. Then, you explain. As I am doing now." Her hand drops away from Tony, but they do not idle at her back, or in any place they would not be of use. She must be ready. Children have tantrums, after all.

"As for the scent of my King, I have known him only to carry the essence of wisdom in his wake. Perhaps this is why it is unfamiliar to you." Whatever it is she thinks of herself, whatever her words mean to any of them, she does not smile or take some pleasure in what almost certainly might be considered insults. For her, these are simple facts.

And lets be honest, she probably isn't the only well dressed professional woman in this building who has referred to Tony as a child.

"First off keep your AIs out of my system."

Tony replies with a quirk of an eyebrow. "Second off," This time a glance at Sally. "Yes, Perfume King. This…" A gesture is given towards Sizani. "Is someone from Wakanda. I'm gonna guess someone close to King-I-Have-Claws-And-Punch-First." A glance towards her as she picks dust from his shirt.

"You finished? Good."

Then back towards Sally. "See they think they are really smart, but really they just cheat better than most of the world. Since they have had access to tech centuries ahead of most people for well…centuries. And don't share. So yes their tech is better than mine. No they didn't build any of it like I did."

A glance back towards the interloper.

"Because they arn't builders. Of course knowing that they have tech centuries ahead of the rest of the world fills them all with a sence of superiority, like we are witnessing right now." A wave of his hand as he steps back and towards his worktable.

Leaning his hip against it, one eyebrow cocked up as he aims his words back to the intruder. "So. You actually here for a reason? Because if you're not you can just sashay your fine set of legs out of my lab."

There's a sense of superiority in this woman that's beyond aristocratic and descending right to royal. Rusalka knows it, and uses it on occasion herself - even if she's only a barony heiress, she's still got a tinge of blue in her arteries and was raised to be aware of it. This woman? This woman was raised to be it. Cobalt-blue eyes narrow when she's just…dismissed.

"The only child I see is the disrespectful charlatan before me." Sally's tone can easily get just as imperious as the intruder's, and she puts it to use. There's a hint of annoyance and anger in her voice, as well; this woman reminds her of the worst of Sokovian blue-bloods. Especially a certain one not so many years ago.

She doesn't notice the distortion near her - instead focusing her attention on the intruder. "You assume much of yourself, as well, my lady." Irony seeps through the last two words. Tony describes their visitor, and omething ticks in her head. "After all, you are only doing the work of another. Your decisions are not your own, neither is your attitude - simply borrowed from another. How dare a servant assume such airs."

This is coming from someone who actually IS nobility, and knows it.

"Wakanda?" Sally raises an eyebrow to Stark, then smiles. "I have never met someone from that nation. Though…if this is their mindset? May it stay that way. I know which I prefer. Sokovia is no great technological haven - but you have shared with us. With me. This woman breaks into your house, claiming nothing of friendship. A child? No. A bully. And a mere servant."

Those blue eyes track back to the other girl, and Sally takes a big step of faith out. She swore an oath to Tony Stark, and she intends to make her point. "You have my permission to leave. Whatever your name is. Be gone." And Sally flat out turns her back on the woman, resting the ruler on the table.

The history lesson of her country that Tony recounts goes unanswered. As much as she finds it inaccurate, it is not a point that she was sent here to make. She lets them both have their say, though the caustic nature of Tony's companion must be addressed first. Sizani does not do this with words, for she is even less of a diplomat than her King.

When Sally turns around, she will find her ruler hits that table and there is something next to it. Something large and black and segmented, digits curling, and claw-sheaths visible, but still full of their deadly payloads. On that table is a massive, mechanical panther, and though it looked as though it might be ready to pounce, it promptly settles it's hindparts in against the table and a single lash of it's tail allows it's disposition to be known. Of all of it's deadly, unspoken power, it is above all else, beautiful, and moves more like a living creature than anything mechanical has a right to.

Here begins the staring contest, purple, glowing eyes staring into Sally's soul.

"Since you were not paying attention Mr. Stark, I, like my King, have come to help you. When he last visited, your security measures faltered, however briefly. My King would speak to you again, and to do so in this place, we would be assured that your guest can not escape. I am pleased to see that you have taken the time to address the problem, though I remain concerned if your physical measures fail. To that end, I will provide you with an agent that should put even Gods to sleep."

Wait, did she just say he did something right?

The new agent will appear in formula form on the screen. Will Tony accept the cheat code?!

Sally will earn only an icy followup to the appearance of Sanura's physical form, and she allows herself the slightest of smiles. Because, for all of Sally's words, the Wakandan appears to know or have resolved that she can do nothing to remove her.

"Don't terrorize my interns, thats my job." Stark does not even bat an eyelash at the fact that there is a mechanical panther in his lab with the firepower to level his building if it wanted. Instead he waves a hand to summon up a keyboard and screen as the formula appears on the screen.

"So you break into my building," He comments as he lets his fingers fly over the virtual keyboard. "And then compliment me on the fact that I actual got magical wards put in. Offer to help keep a god…little g not bit g…contained…" His eyes flicker back as he exectues a scan of the formula and everything in his damn lab.

"This goes back to the whole thing of /why not make a damn appointment/. I mean is it against the code of the panthers or something to make apointments? That would totally be just like a cat." The mechanic replies with a quirked eyebrow as he glances at the mechanical panther.

His eyes flicker over the weapon packages, the outer shell of the machine. Imagining the power source and the movement systems. Too smooth to be traditional, have to be some kind of synthetic muscle system. Attached to a flexible skeleton…

…its doable.

"And I was paying attention. And for the record I'm pretty sure that your King came here to threaten a god."

For her part, the history lesson was actually useful and interesting. Not much of Wakanda is known to Sokovia, and Sally's studies since coming to America have not focused on geopolitics or history nearly as much. The attitude they have? Well, from what she's heard of their king, specifically his visit to Stark's house not so long ago, and what she sees of this woman? Definitely spot-on.

When she turns around, setting her ruler down, however, her mood goes from annoyedly dismissive to utterly shocked. It's impossible that something that big and malevolent could move so silently, especially on a metal table. She has no idea how it happened, and even as a small part of her brain looks the machine over the rest of her mind - and her voice - shrieks in terror. Tony might have rolled out some cursing earlier, and now Rusalka joins him in a burst of Ukrainian almost strong enough to blister paint.

One deep breath later, she's recovered - and she's mad. It takes a few seconds of staring before she can finally break the gaze of that robotic panther-creation. Finally, she turns back to the servant, at least acknowledging her presence - and, as well, turning her back on the panther. She's gambling that this woman is going to be too superior - and possibly under orders - to actually bother carrying out her threats. She's just trying to scare Sally The confidence of youth and the belief in one's own immortality, of course.

"Mr. Stark is correct. You have no respect for others. You threaten, when you should offer peace." She can't help but let some anger in her voice, giving it an edge that Tony hasn't heard yet. Sally actually starts slowly walking forward, putting herself between Tony and this visitor. "You come here to deliver something - something to help people, and yet you act in such a way? As if the entire world exists to serve your whim? Beyond nekulturny. You are a stain upon your family and your nation and your king," she decides.

She looks back to Tony, eyebrow raised. "Threaten a god. Really? I suppose that fits, yes? So arrogant." She looks back to the other woman, arms crossed over her chest and stares hard. "Perhaps Wakanda is right. They are superior in their self confidence. You. Servant. Remove your toy from my work table."

"My King does as he does because Bast allows him to be the equal of your guest. I would not recommend another follow in his footsteps." The formula provided seems to be derived from a biological compound. Certainly the authentic would be preferable, but it appears to be possible to synthesize it. If the readout is correct, and JARVIS is having so much fun with the cat that's playing with him in the digital realm that it might be off a little, it can bring a subject down about fifty percent faster, with much less threat of overdose. The perfect thing for a God in a college kid's body.

While Tony is busy looking it over, Sally's anger carries her into the sightline, and if their were any justice in this world, Sizani would have been born with only five feet and three inches of height, so Sally could look down upon her and unleash her rage.

There is no justice in the world.

Sizani looms, staring down at the offensive Sokovian as if she were a blight upon this world. The words do not move her, and she explains with the icy conviction of a professional.

"The human condition is one of imperfection. Intelligence and instinct blend, washing over one another in waves. Observations become skewed. You use the word servant as a blow against me, but know that duty carries us all. Even the Princess from a tribe of inventors and engineers. Consider, that you speak now from no place of authority. You do not know me. You do not know my country. You admit this yourself. But I know you. I know him. Knowledge is my purpose. I encourage you to realize your human condition, as all Wakandans do. Look at this world around you. See Sanura as not a threat, but what she ultimately is."

There is a bump at Sally's hip. A hard, forceful press of a metal cat's head in only the way a cat can, rubbing the whole of her body against the fiery Sokovian before moving on to languidly lay between the women. "A keeper of peace. Your conviction is admirable, but you will gain nothing with your misplaced anger."

Finally, a glance back to Tony, and one of her hands curls over the wrist of the other. "We should discuss additional security measures, Mr. Stark. For the sake of the girl you keep, and of this entire world. Perhaps over dinner?"

Did she just ask Tony out on a date?

"I'm pretty sure the only people I /let/ down there are ones that should be there. Like the guys putting the wards on it and the people actually trying to help her. I feel bad for the kid, but coming in and getting her riled isn't really helpful for anyone. But still, people love doing it." Tony grumbles as his gaze is drawn to the formula.

"Will the synthesized version be able to have the same effect and what kind of application vector is most impressive." He shoots off towards her before his Intern and the Bitch From Wakanda go head to head.

He wonders for a second if he is gonna have to find out just how good that panther is. For all of his flippiant attitude the so called Iron Man is protective of his people and he watches this confrontation for a long moment.

His mind though spins, checking to see just what he has on hand to slow down something like that. Scenerios rush though his mind discarded or put aside as a maybe…

But the lady doesn't escalate things, in fact she says something that rings just a touch true. And just a touch false.

"You might want to work on a slightly less threatening reveal." He points out. "Maybe her playing with a ball of L-Wire or something. I don't know, totally came off as a threatening presentation when she decloaked out of nowhere. But you know, thats just me. What do I know."

He's just Tony Stark.

A glance though is thrown at Sally, a quirked eyebrow. A slight shake of his head. Don't raise to the bait anymore.

Though the last question causes Stark to quirk an eyebrow. "I'd say yes, but I'm gonna have to ask are you just gonna rub it in my face that your tech is better than mine?"

Bast. A name she knows, at least from basic history. And Rusalka knows that the guest this woman speaks of isn't herself, but another…one locked far below. Tony himself said it - god, with a little g, but clearly something far beyond her. This is a battle on their level, Sally decides, one that's far above her head. A slight prayer. Khoro…if you are there?

She doesn't care too much about how tall this woman us, as long as she doesn't have to crane her neck upwards as if gazing into the eyes of a professional basketball player. Justice in that regard is unnecessary; she still has the courage of her own convictions - and youth - to sustain her. But she lets the Wakandan have her say, and takes a long deep breath.

Duty. It's a word that Rusalka Stojespal has run into before, and run from in the past. But the word hits deep, and an echo of her mother passes through her head. She has a duty to Tony Stark, whom she had sworn a family oath to. And this is his house, not hers, which the woman points out. There's a flash of anger that crosses through those blue eyes, before Sally takes half a step back - and gets the rub from the robotic panther.

It gets her attention, and she watches as the machine settles in as if it were real. She squats down, not kneeling - but wanting to get a closer look at the relaxed 'keeper of peace.' Sally glances back to Tony when he mentions the threatening revelation of the cat's presence, and nods - to him, first off. A shake of her own, just as slight - she won't be a problem.

She isn't fourteen anymore, and this isn't a fight in school. Sally stands, slowly, and grows up just a little bit when she does. "Mr. Stark is correct. As you say, your purpose is knowledge. Surely you would know that surprising someone with such a thing would be…provocative." She gives the woman a look, but there's no direct hostility. A little coldness perhaps, because of her annoyance, but Sally actually takes a slight step back with one foot and nods her head. The slightest curtsy she can, as it were.

"Sanura, you said? I do. A very impressive creation, no doubt about it. I thank you for the opportunity to see such a thing." She hasn't fully swallowed her pride, but she is redirecting it a bit. "Your concern is for your duty. As is mine. My duty is as his student and…servant, as it were. I am sure you understand the binds of family oaths, and those we swear them to."

It's almost a peace offering. It's definitely an attempt to at least reach a polite understanding. But there's almost a wolflike glow in those eyes, as she watches the other woman.

"Aerosol gas, twenty meter dispersion per five milliliters in liquid form. You will lose approximately ten percent effectiveness depending on your manufacturing profile. Utilizing it in other forms further decreases it's effectiveness. I cannot supply you with those production methods that would counter this loss, but I will not stop you from exploring your own. My King and I give this gift freely, and so it comes without condition." That said, she retrieves her Kimoyo card from mid air and tucks it into her jacket.

Her gaze sweeps back to the woman as she calms, and offers advice on matters of diplomacy. But as Sizani turns away from her, she speaks to Sally, glancing over her shoulder as her and the Panther move towards one of room's external hatches. You know, one of the many places one of Tony's new armors can escape for some flight testing. "You see now, your hindsight brings you clarity. It was provocative. It was also informative. In my country, to truly know someone, you must know how they would deal with an invader." She turns then, to face them both, a matter of the utmost respect.

"In this way, it was a pleasure to meet you both. As for your technology, Mister Stark. It would not do to speak ill of your work. We use similar technologies in my country on an everyday basis. The reactors in the toys our children play with are especially similar."

There's a beat there. A long pause as she stares at Tony. The slightest uptick of the corner of her mouth.Maybe she's just getting it out of the way now.

"I will have Sanura set up an appointment for our dinner. Despite what you inferred, we do believe in them, for important things."

There's a hiss of air as that hatch opens to the outside, and JARVIS speaks. "Sir? You would not believe what I just encountered in my matrix! A most interesting creature, I. Sir, it appears we have an intruder."

Sanura leaps, then, and it might for all appearances seem as if Sizani is being attacked by the creature, her back set upon by it's bulk, but on impact it twists and ripples, plates extending and stretching into whole, protective materials. It's clear that some of Sanura's outter texture was holographic, or perhaps the next level. Particle synthesis? In mere moments, the Midnight Angel armor completes it's transformation, and as if gravity were just another social norm a Wakandan could break at a whim, her feet leave the ground. There's no propellant, or visible swell of energy. She rises as if she had command over the laws of nature herself, and when she speaks again, it comes with a digital alteration. "Until next we meet."

There's chillingly almost no sound, the distortion of some law or another broken in the physical realm, and she's blasting off into the distance.

Tony just stares at where she was for a moment. Where she /broke his windows/ leaving to be more exact.

"I /really/ hate Wakadans."

Sally watches quietly as the Wakandan says her piece. The explanation to Tony is over her head, but it deals with problems she isn't currently working. When it turns to her, though, she straightens slightly - before adding a cultural observation of her own. "In my country, my ancestral home?" She has to clarify, since she's been thinking of America as such more and more. "To truly know someone, you invite them in as guests and friends, and share a meal. It is the way of the mountains."

It's also a lot less likely to get someone randomly shot.

The Sokovian girl watches as the cat…merges. She can't think of a better word, and just shakes her head. Whatever that thing was, it wasn't completely a hologram, not the way it had pushed against her. And then her boss speaks, and she can't help a nervous chuckle.

"I believe I understand why. And…Mr. Stark, I humbly apologize for my words and actions. I am in your home, and in your service." She sighs. "I am sorry for that. I promise it will not happen again." Well…she'll certainly try not to let it, at least.

Stark just waves that apology away as he sighs. "Eh, don't worry about it." A pause. "Don't tell Pepper about it though, she'll yell at me I'm sure." The inventor replies as he hops up to sit on his workbench.

"JARVIS, welcome back buddy. They didn't poke at ya did they?" He reaches behind himself to pluck up an apple from…somewhere.

He stashes food like a damn mouse he does.

A crunching bite before he quirks an eyebrow. He looks towards the formula that he was given. A slow, thoughtful nod before he throws the apple up and catches it. His annoyance vanishing in seconds as his mood does a quick one eighty.

He's like that.

"So! JARVIS start fabricating a batch of this stuff, give me airborne and contact versions. Contact version send to my personal station so I can upgrade the ICERs with it. Should at least tripple the effectiveness."

The smile turns wolfish.

"Then do a sweap for Wakandan energy sigs in the lab and purge unknown code from the servers. Don't want to make it easy for them to get back in." He draws a deep breath before looking back towards Sally. "They are cheaters, but they also have been invaded more times than any other country in the history of the world because of it. I guess there /might/ be a reason for them to be so insular. Not that I'd ever tell them that."

A new crunch on the apple as JARVIS works, he gives the AI a moment before that smile of his turns wicked and wolfish.

"And now, tell me she thought little enough of my toys here that she let herself get scanned on the way out."

"I think I see why you are working on those suits…even for me. Permit me to apologize for doubting you. And…Ms. Potts would have…words for both of us, I am sure." Putting it mildly. "And yes sir." Then Tony's off to speak with Jarvis, and Sally settles back in at her table - at least that thing, Sanura, hadn't disturbed anything. "Mr. Stark? Look. Not a single object knocked to the floor by that robot cat. Maybe their programming isn't as good as they think?"

Joke attempt number one, so long as the Sokovian's been here.

"ICERs? Ah - yes. About that. I spoke to Miss Jones, about the refugees. She explained a lot. And has a request for you, sir. Something to damage nanites, an EMP field - that can be used like a gun. I thought, with the missiles you were working on, if that could be scaled down…?" She shrugs - the idea is for something like an ICER that works on the God's Blood.

The lesson of history gets a nod. "I understand that…but, Sokovia has not had the peaceful history that other nations have. We've faced extermination before. Yet we do not…" She waves a hand in the departed Wakandan's direction. "And when I have my way about it, we never will. Now. Back to work, sir?"

"I seem to be quite alright, sir. Fabrication underway, sir." Comes the reply of the AI, and as Tony asks his second question there's a longer response. "Part of my passive, secondary function constantly scans all areas of this building, sir, unless I am told not to. Though much of the material was difficult to scan, I believe I have some useful information. It will take several minutes to compile the energy profile, sir. It.. does not comply with the laws of known physics."

But really, whatever does. What will end up on Tony's display is an estimation of payload, force resistance of armor, and an energy signature and power output estimate. Some of it is not exact, because it might require real world tests - an energy blast against the armor, for example.

One signature is exact, however. Vibranium is the main component of the armor, and in many different densities and forms. The energy signature is a resonate of Vibranium, which likely means they know how to use it as a power source.

But of course they do.

Cheaters.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License