Of Matadors & Devil Investors
Roleplaying Log: Of Matadors & Devil Investors
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Trish Walker comes to Emma Frost about a new business venture.

Other Characters Referenced: Sebastian Shaw, Tony Stark
IC Date: December 18, 2019
IC Location: New York City, NY
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 14 Jan 2020 19:26
Rating & Warnings: G
Scene Soundtrack: Seven Devils by Kevin Morby
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

The invitation came nearly a week after the infamous Yule party.

There are rumours—dark and scandalous—about what happened in the wee hours of the morning as the wassail bowl emptied at last and the fires died down.

Emma Frost features in precisely zero of those rumours.

The invitation comes by way of her assistant. An appointment for cocktails in a small, upscale restaurant in Midtown. There’s a fifty-fifty shot that Trish will have never even heard of it, even with her connections on the scene, but the address will certainly check out.

Six o’clock sharp. Miss Frost will be gone by quarter after if you’re late. Don’t bring a plus one.


Six o’clock, sharp. On the dot. Or rather, a minute early is when Trish Walker arrives. A minute early so that she can use that minute to announce her arrival to the host, who will then show her to their table, arriving at said table at six o’clock sharp. She’s dressed in a nice dark business pantsuit with a blue blouse, a handbag slung over one shoulder.

“Ms. Frost. Thank you for agreeing to meet with me.” She extends her hand to the other woman in greeting before taking her seat and placing her bag at her feet.

For the time being, delving into her mind will bring up thoughts of either Wilson Fisk or snippets of old scripts from It’s Patsy. It’s as if she’s attempting to keep one at the forefront purposefully, the scripts, while the other, Fisk, keeps getting in her way.


Emma Frost’s table—to what would be the surprise of no one who knows her well—is tucked away from view in a small private room with a door covered by an honest-to-goodness beaded curtain. The walls are wrapped in a sumptuous layer of decadent flocked wallpaper. And the chairs are a comfortable parsons variety, upholstered in an ungodly soft crimson velvet.

The richness of the room about her, reds and golds and warm mahogany, makes her white sheath dress and lace bolero stand out all the more for it.

Trish extends her hand, and Emma pauses for a moment before slowly extending her own without rising. This handshake, says her pause without saying, is done under duress.

“We’ll see if you still feel that way once we’re done, Miss Walker,” she replies, keeping a very careful bead on the other woman’s thoughts. “I make no promise to be of any help to you whatsoever.”


“I ask that you hear me out. Beyond that, whatever you decide I shall accept and leave you be.” Trish responds, gazing across the table at the other woman for a moment. “There’s a saying that goes ‘Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.’ However, people like us know better.” She pauses to let the words sink in. By ‘people like us’ does she mean rich? Famous? People with certain…abilities?

“Freedom is control.” She states after a good moment of silence. “Control of your work, your business, those who work for you, control over what the public hears. When you’re in control, you have the freedom to do what you want. The freedom to do the work you want to do, and the freedom to be as leisurely as you please. In a sense, isn’t that what the Hellfire Club is about? Control?”

Interlocking her fingers and placing her hands on the table, she continues. “Recently, Wilson Fisk was released from prison. He has been taking his opportunity to…control various businesses, including WNEX Station, where I have my radio show. As such, he has…well, control over my show and what I say. I can’t say I was a fan of his before he was released. I’m even less so now.”

She takes a deep breath in. “I propose a business venture between you and I to boot Fisk out of WNEX and take control of the station. That, or,” She pauses and raises an eyebrow as she makes next suggestion. “Or we could start our own station to rival WNEX. With your business know how and skills, we could get a station up and running in no time.”


Silence reigns in the long moment that follows Trish’s proposal, with only a lift of Emma’s eyebrow to break her otherwise stony, humorless expression. The snifter of brandy sits nestled in her hand, swirling slowly, and never once has the mind witch offered Trish to join her in imbibing.

She sips.

“You genuinely have negative amounts of survival instinct, don’t you?” she replies after, once she’s considered the proposal. The bite of her words is altogether caustic. “All audacity and bright hope that everything will somehow magically work together for your benefit if you could just be brazen enough.”


“What can I say?” Trish says softly with a casual lift of her shoulders. “I’ve found hope to be immeasurably more pleasant than the alternative. Life isn’t a bed of roses and I’ve learned to place hope in what might outwardly seem like an impossibility.”

“Now, I’m not stupid. For whatever reason, I know I’ve rubbed you the wrong way.” Of course, digging into aspects of the Club that she has no right knowing about is bound to raise a few eyebrows. “However, Wilson Fisk? He is nobody’s friend. He’d sooner stab a person in the back, regardless of whether they’re friend or foe. It’s why he has to be bought and or run out of town sooner rather than later. Or, well, new evidence needs to be found to put him away. For good.”

The radio show host remains quiet for a moment, permitting the outside sounds to become more prevalent. “Think of it this way.” The silence broken once more. “How beneficial is it to have someone like Fisk around? Hopefully, and yes, there’s that hope again, you come to the same conclusion I have…that it’s more beneficial for everyone when Fisk is gone than when he’s around.


The longer Trish speaks, the more austere and cold Emma’s expression becomes.

I’m not stupid, Trish contends.

Clearly, you are, that expression counters.

I know I’ve rubbed you the wrong way, Trish continues.

To put it mildly, Emma’s cold, hard stare— softened only by the refined features that couch it and their exquisitely feminine coating of cosmetics —offers back.

“‘For whatever reason,’” she parrots back. “Why, whatever do you mean? Do you mean the clumsy stumbling around the things that very clearly do not concern you? That Whatever Reason?”

——

“Perhaps I had reasons to inquire regarding the very things I inquired about.” Trish responds in turn. “Would it have been so difficult for either yourself or Mr. Shaw to come straight out and inform me to look no further?” Of course, she would have been more curious had they done that, but that’s not the point. “Everything I did, whether I bumbled around the point or not, was done with purpose. However, that purpose is no longer of concern to me. Whatever…secrets yourself and Shaw have, they’re yours. You can keep them.”

‘Maybe I should have just gone straight to somebody like Tony Stark instead.’ The thought bubbles to the surface amidst the It’s Patsy scripts and thoughts of Fisk.

“One thing I do know about you is that you’re powerful. You have influence. This is a time for someone like you, like me. For finesse.” She continues, though it’s a seemingly impossible battle. “The vigilante justice had its way to Fisk and it failed. It won’t work a second time.” She knows. She tried. “All I ask is for the opportunity to work with you against him. Something that I do believe with all my might will be beneficial for us.”


“You’ll do well to note,” Emma retorts, “that I said absolutely nothing about your having reasons.” From her delivery of the word, she clearly thinks little of her reasons.

She sips again, and her voice carries all the tone of an instructor—if a world-weary one—as she continues. “What I said is that you were clumsy. A characteristic that is, in fact, the very antithesis of ‘finesse’.”

Round and round the brandy glass goes. Another sip drains the snifter dry and it clinks hollowly against the table as her manicured hand sets it down upon the table.

“So,” she says, unforgiving eyes staying upon Trish without flinching, “tell me how, precisely, you are like me, Miss Walker.”

Perhaps she really should have gone to Stark instead.


“And you’ll do well to note, I made note that now was a time for finesse. I made no no such claim regarding my previous actions.” Trish looks across at the other woman for a moment, silent.

“We are both women who know what we desire. I have a feeling that we’re both also willing to do whatever it takes to get we want.” She’d go the ‘abilities’ route, but she’s afraid that exposing those so willingly would be a bad move. Unless Emma Frost were to make the first move, or the first slip up, Trish is hesitant to mention them at all. And Emma either mentioning her ability or slipping up are very likely.

“Or, perhaps, we have very much not alike. Maybe we are worlds apart.” She takes a deep breath in and sighs. “Perhaps I was just hoping that another member of the Hellfire Club would be willing to help me, despite any differences.”


Trish is certainly right about one thing: she will have to be clever indeed to get a misspeak out of Emma Frost. Especially with Frost’s infamous guard very much in place—a nearly impenetrable wall on every front.

“Wilson Fisk,” Emma offers, legs crossing as she leans back in her chair. “Is not someone with whom one openly goes toe-to-toe. Even if I did believe that holding media was a brilliant new expansion for my portfolio, he would probably be one of the last people in front of whom I would put a fledgling company.”

There’s a pause.

“Unless, of course, you’re intending to use it as a red flag before the bull so that you can get the sabre in. So, matador. Tell me your brilliant plan, beyond ‘start a revenge company with someone else’s money that will very clearly be an open challenge to the man who just tap danced his way out of the Raft.’”

There’s another pause, and then Emma unfurls one of her hands in invitation.

“Go on, Miss Walker. Spare no detail.

[Fin.]

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