HoM: Dead Ends

April 05, 2018:

Princess Lorna tries to figure out what is going on around the Palace, and finds no answers.


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

Given in the last few weeks how strange her brother had been acting, Lorna had decided to take drastic steps. Or at least, as drastic as a Princess that had appearances to keep up on. She still had her father's gala to run after all. That said, she couldn't directly go against her brother openly, but it was well past time to snoop.

So she called upon her friend, Monet, and her personal guard.. the Cuckoos. They weren't technically on the books as members of the Red Guard, but that was only way she could be sure that they wouldn't commandeered by her brother.

Pietro was up to something, and she needed to know what and why. Especially as it involved some would be SHIELD recruit, Nate Grey. So, she'd asked one of the blondes to find Nate's father and invite him to secure location outside the Palace grounds.

She would find out what she could, and go from there. Security was so much easier to maintain when they were a hivemind of telepaths.


Usually, only one of the Cuckoos appears with Lorna at a time. It isn't that the others aren't present, more that they stay off to the wings, among crowds or in other parts of the building. Sometimes they simply shield themselves from being seeen with a low level telepathic baffling effect. Whatever works best.

The Stepford Cuckoos, as a group, are one of the most powerful telepathic entities in existence. They've trained their powers to the utmost extent individually and together and their primary task of late has been to secure Lorna's safety. So they constantly scan people near the princess for aggressive thoughts and engage in a little bit of thought policing and memory adjustment. The worst of them are simply never seen again.

It's a job.

Right now is different. Three of the young women, dressed sharply in black with matching polished mid-shin boots, are approaching with a man following behind them. They exchange glances. "The direct method was the easiest today," the woman on the left offers helpfully. "No one saw us come in. At least, not that they remember.

"Good evening, Lorna," they add in unison.


Letting out a long sign, Monet looks totally bored already. She walks along with Lorna and looks over at her, "Am I at least going to get to hurt someone or something?" She hmms and then looks around, "I much prefer going to clubs with you." She chuckles a little and if that wasn't proof enough that she loved such things, than one might look to her outfit.

Monet is dressed in a skirt that can barely be called that. It is a belt around her hips with a piece of cloth hanging down the front and one hanging down the back. Her legs are fully on display from the side down to a pair of heels. Her top is nothing more than a crop top.

She seems to almost vogue as she walks, showing off with every step and enjoying any attention given. She looks over at the Cuckoos as they speak and then looks forward. She's her own kind of princess.


Scott Summers of this reality is not exactly the most protaganistic or heroic. Helping out Nate and his friends is done in the manner of a father who is doing his very best to try and be a parent but really not the best at it.
A former pilot for commercial air, then privatized he earned his way up, made a lot of money and eventually inherited his grandfather's airline, it's grown a significant amount since hes taken ownership, largely thanks to Emma Summers-Frost, his wife. Her business acument has just about everything to do with his success.

This particular exchange is confusing to Scott, hes walking with hands tucked in to the front pockets of his wool-blend peacoat, it loooks grey and stiff but fits his tall built form well, long legged in slacks and wearing dressy shoes, a scarf hangs off his neck and a pair of reflective glasses cover his eyes.

"I really should start asking more questions." Scott remarks, he wanted to come though, hes questioning his better judgement on why but often, sometimes hes a man of whims, usually not even his own. Thats what you get for marrying a telepath though. He learned this.


Lorna smirked at Monet, "Maybe, if we gain anything of worth, you might have a slew of people to break." She chimed lightly, taking her seat at the desk of deep cherry wood. There was in fact a club below, sound proofed two way glass cut them off from below. Club M, as it was, itself was owned through various false names and the alike, by Princess Lorna herself. It was better for keeping an eye on things.

As well as keeping things from her family.

Who, though she loved dearly, didn't trust beyond her father.

She crossed her legs as the blondes entered and greeted her, and she smiled, pouring herself a drink into a fine crystal glass. Her green eyes moving toward one Scott Summers with faint interest. She didn't really know much about the man, beyond what she'd pulled up on a quick glance through his public files. Still, better options than the telepaths in Nate Grey's family.

A smile pulled at her lips and she nodded to the Cuckoos. "Good evening. Thank you, I trust your judgement on this." Her gaze moving to Scott and she waved a hand to the chair opposite of her. "Please have a seat, can I get you a drink? Water?" She arched a brow upwards, leaning forward.

"I'm sure I don't have to introduce myself, so moving on.. Mister Summers, do you happen to know what your son gets up to these days?"


"And good evening to you as well, Monet," the blondes add, turning toward the other princess and bowing their collective heads slightly. The smiles don't waver as they nod in response to Lorna's words.

"I'm sure we'll have something of worth soon enough," the first notes. Then they all step off to the side, hands clasped behind their back, and silently watch as Lorna speaks to Scott.

"I feel like we need popcorn," the second remarks. No one is paying attention enough for it to disrupt, of course. They chat like this during solemn affairs often and never get called on it.


For her part, Monet simply settles in and smiles at Scott as she lets one leg cross and hang free, totally exposed. She is simply waiting for the fun to begin.


"No, no introduction necessary. It's nice to meet you in person." Scott is about to offer his hand for a shake but instead, not exactly sure about protocol uses the offered chair as a distraction, sitting down to begin fidgeting idly with the button on his jacket sleeve.
"What my son does on his own time? I'm not exactly sure as horrible as that sounds. He's old enough I trust hes being responsible aside from wasting my money on courses hes not taking. Hrm, that band again? Rage of Apocalypse or some nonsene. I don't know. Why, is he in trouble again?"

Scott's already pulling up his cellphone, thumbing through to find Madelyne's contact number. Over the edge of the device he does see Monet's leg! A look up at her and he offers a polite smile with a tip of his head, "Hello."
A look given to the Cuckoos, almost as if he figures he'll spy Emma's return gaze. Eerie that.

"No drink though, thank you. I'm okay."


Lorna's lips twitched in faint amusement, oh the blondes definitely were allowed to get away with snide comments and off hand remarks. Especially at royal ceremonies when things dragged on for far too long. It kept things amusing. Still, the Princess of Genosha, remained polite, if entirely professional. Hoping that the telepaths would pick up something that would lead to answers.

There were reasons Scott, the non-telepath of the Summers-Frost household, had been called in.

"Depends, if you have an answer to me or not. He has been applying to SHIELD, approved for training.. but has somehow ended up working with two fully trained agents. And has come and gone from the palace several times. He wouldn't have happened to mention, why, would he?" She arched a green eyebrow upwards, leaning back in her chair as she folded her hands.


The Cuckoos stand around quietly, watching all of this. They exchange glances with the middle one, who shrugs. Mostly, they are waiting for thoughts to pop up that might lead to something. Light surface scans. They also watch the area and hold a mental conversation about Scott being cute in a totally "whipped never had a thought of his own" kind of way. It passes the time.


Smiling, she shifts her legs to switch which one is on top when Scott looks. Monet seems to enjoy the attention and she glances over at Lorna briefly at her words. SHe hmms softly before looking over at Scott and then states, "I wonder, Mister Summers." Monet smiles, "Did your wife come with you?" She doesnt' interrupt, just slides the question in there with a wide grin.

She looks over at the Cuckoos briefly, seeming to enjoy their little jokes a moment enough to send a thought over to closest one <You catching anything from him?>


"Not to me. You're likely asking the wrong parent, Nate's more his mothers child than mine these days. We've never had much in the way of strong bonds." Scott reclines his shoulders back, his hands rested on his knees.
"If its serious enough to call me here… " A glance at the women present, the Cuckoos each and Monet, "No, my wife is busy with her own affairs." He answers M.

"You can't just outright ask him?" Scott is entirely clueless, surface thoughts from the man are his itnerary, the annoyance of his new shoe not being broken in yet, the appeal of Monet's shapely thigh, irritation that he knows very little of what Nate may or may not be up to and the curiousity that someone or someones might be fishing around through his mind. To whiich… that thought alone has a tidal wave of honed defenses starting to spark to life, a wall of crashing noise thats mean to drown out the intrusive. He may not even be aware hes doing it.

"Should I be phoning my lawyer?"


Lorna reached for her drink, her gaze trained on Scott as she continued to smile that diplomatic smile and sip at the richly amber colored drink. She tilted her head, considering. "Mores the pity to hear, father and son bonds are supposed to be the very strongest, don't you think, Mister Summers?" She mused, of course, there were layers within layers to her own words.

Thinking her older brother was plotting treason or possibly making a run for the throne, for instance.

Are you picking anything up? She thought at the blondes, and leaned back once more, propping up her chin with a hand.

"It is standard government protocol to interview SHIELD agents, or other support staff's friends and family to make sure that they're safe for clearance reasons. There's no need for a lawyer, Mister Summers, I assure you. In the case of your son, the process is so sped up, that my presence is necessary to approve of the heightened clearance in the palace." She lied smoothly, easily even.

She was her father's daughter in powers and in leadership, it would seem.

"I assure you, I only have a few more questions."


"Well, this is less exciting than we expected. Do you really think this guy is clean?"

"Well, you've seen how he dresses," the Cuckoos quietly muse to themselves. "Thank you for coming along so polite, Mr. Summers," they call out more audibly. "I promise you're not going to need your lawyer for anything tonight. Everything is under control."


A grin and she looks over at Lorna as she speaks before looking past her to the Cuckoos. She considers them a moment before looking back over to Scott. She waits for the answer before looking at him carefully with a chuckle, "So you are saying that your wife isn't with you on this trip?" She hmms, "Do you need a place to stay?" She grins and winks at him before her gaze goes back over to the Cuckoos, watching for the reaction of one in particular.


"One would think." Scott remarks about the father-son bonding comment.

"You can assure all you like, the fact this is official in any capacity I would feel better having a lawyer here." A frown now and hes swinging up and down through his contact list, not actually clicking on one of them, however.
"I'll answer what questions I can, if it gets to the point I need a legal counsel… I am sure you won't mind a pause."

Scott's disciplined mind should be hard to read now, even for someone(s) like the Cuckoos. Force required now as he's got the X-Men's seasons mental barriers up.

The further promises about lawyers not needed just has his smile tight.

"Guessing you're the good cop. Maybe naughty one." He teases Monet. "If I end up needing a place to stay you will be the first to know." Yeah, he can swing back. Surprisingly relaxed he lifts one ankle up to rest it on his knee, staying reclined back in that seat.

"All ears and hopefully I have the answers you need here so we can all be on our way." Why did he want to come here again? It seemed like such a fine idea earlier.


swiping up and down/not swinging*)


Princess Lorna sipped at her drink, making a show of picking up her tablet and clicking over it a few times, as if needing to review a few things before she spoke again. Her gaze swinging back to the blondes, Monet, and then back to Scott briefly once more. "Has your son ever had bouts of mental instability? Strange or unusual beliefs about reality?" She tapped the tablet again, her gaze idly flicking over it.

It was definitely not a governmental form, but it could look like one.

"Any troubles with drugs, or excessive drinking? Abuse of his powers?" She arched a brow once more, and reached for her drink again.


"No, not to anything I remember." Scott's smile has faded again, that scowl returning behind his glasses at the line of questions. "Awful personal of you to be the one asking these questions. I didn't expect someone with so much rank to them, I mean, /the/ Princess. No offense. I'm honored." If not suspicious.

The questions hitting the air as he takes in the silence of their companions, his thumb rising up this time to text a cab.

"He's been fairly normal as far as I have known, just a teenager who doesn't want to listen to anyone and now, SHIELD. Beats the alternatives, right?"


Lorna blinked once, twice, and sipped at her drink, turning off the tablet with a wave of her hand and setting it back down on the desk. "They're personal because his clearance level is top secret, and as I said. Rush job. If he's going to be in the palace, there are matters of national security at risk. My life is at risk, as is my family's. You'll understand that I take a personal interest in such things." She murmured, smiled again.

"There are more questions, Mister Summers, but I can tell you're getting restless with them. Unfortunate that I'll have to revoke your son's temporary clearance until I can verify the information with someone that knows him better. Thank you so much for coming in to speak with me." She continued to smile, folding her hands atop the desk.


"I think the Princess is displeased," one of the Cuckoos murmurs. Another steps forward. "Thank you for coming, Mr. Summers. Let us give you a ride home?"

"Don't worry about it," another continues, possibly responding to a forming thought.

"It would be our pleasure." A beatific smile follows, complete with perfect teeth.


Smiling sweetly, Monet stands up and then looks at Scott, "Or I can give you a ride home…" She winks before shrugging and turning in such a way that all of her leg and a bit more is revealed. She tehn looks over to Lorna, "Thanks for inviting me." She reaches out and touches her shoulder lightly, "Don't worry about security tonight." She chuckles, "Only a fool would do something with me staying over and drinking your alcohol."


Scott stares a moment long then lets out a sigh, a motion of one hand in the air, "It's fine. I had a dinner planned with a former colleague, not at all sure why I didn't call them or tell them I wouldn't be showing." A look over at the blonde telepaths, a thoughtful sound escapes him then hes looking back at Magneto's daughter.
"Go ahead with the questions, if it helps him in his career choice, it won't hurt to answer what I can. Have to mind me, I'm used to working with a lot of people who require reading the dotted lines and recordings. It's become a precaution… "
The Cuckoo gets a glance then back at Lorna. "Ah, that me being dismissed?" Scott's lips curl back in to a handsome smile. "I suppose I can toss Nate an apology later."


"It's up to the Princess, of course," one of the blondes replies smoothly. Lorna gets a glance at that.


Lorna smiled at the Cuckoos, and it was filled with a thought of high amusement. Along with the following orders Did you pick anything up? If not. Take him wherever he was before and wipe his mind of having met me. Even as she reached for her drink once more and shrugged.

"Mister Summers, I only have to verify this information with two other people. Can you recommend anyone besides his mother, as we already have her on the list.. that might know him well? Any friends or is he seeing someone that we might call to wrap this all up?" Her smile remained, even as she glanced side long at Monet as she offered the man a ride home and assured her about security.

"I don't want to put you out, darling."


"No trouble." She grins at Lorna and Monet turns her gaze back to Scott as he speaks up. She considers him a moment and then looks to Lorna before she goes and sits over next to the Cuckoos this time. She smiles over at them as she settles in right next to one and then looks to Scott.


"Well, I can't say this hasn't been awkward. Thank you for the uh hospitality." Scott stands up and gives a nod thats just not quite a bow to Lorna stepping around the chair to the back of it, pausing there at the question, "His aunt Jean and maybe… " Blanks. He is coming up with complete blanks, "Emma Frost. Ask both of them."
Right now his thoughts are a practiced mess, if any of the Cuckoos want to 'push' on their telepathic pressure towards him they can but he'll become aware and Emma is going to get an immediate text. He is not an idiot about mutant gifts or to some extent politics even, his track record speaks for itself.

"I'd prefer the brunette if I am getting a choice in my chauffeur." He jokes, "Variety, you know, plus… " The others look eerily like his wife. He really feels like he should know /them/ ALL of them.
"Honestly though I appreciate it, I can have a car pick me up out front. Perk of owning an airline, I have guys that do nothing but drive people around, they're more than happy to do so for the boss."


To Lorna, one of the blondes sends the message quietly, <He's used to telepaths. It's a mess in there. If we change things around too much someone will be tipped off. He's associated with a- very - powerful telepath. They've made a real mess in here.>

The Cuckoos step back and shrug. "Your loss, Mr. Summers. Enjoy your ride home." He'll be will within range while leaving the palace. There are bigger questions.


Lorna shrugged a single shoulder, and nodded to Monet, and raised her glass in Scott's general direction. "I'll look into that. Thank you, Mister Summers." She murmured, and sighed as the Cuckoo's mental response followed. Another dead end. Another brick wall. How irritating.

"Have a wonderful rest of your day." Her smile fixed, though the blondes would pick up the vast amounts of irritation that came off her in waves.

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