Mistletoe Masquerade: Added Ambiance
Roleplaying Log: Mistletoe Masquerade: Added Ambiance
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Gentleman Ghost and the White Queen end up in a back parlor together. Emma Frost is caustic and Jim Craddock… gets a job?!

Other Characters Referenced:
IC Date: December 28, 2018
IC Location: Hellfire Club - NYC
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 07 Jan 2019 18:56
Rating & Warnings: G
NPC & GM Credits: Random partygoers by Emma Frost
Associated Plots

The party is a crowded one to be certain, and every corner of the Hellfire Club is packed with the sinning sorts who make its social affairs spin round.

The halls need to be literally slipped through, turning sideways to fit past people finding a match or a quiet place to talk in the moderately quieter corridors. Its silks and fine wool, pearls and gold tie bars.

Most of the rooms are very warm, although never quite stuffy despite the smell of clove cigarettes and pipe and cigar smoke that escapes several of them. It pays to have the best in exhaust systems, one supposes.

Emma Frost has made her way into one of those cloudy lounges, availing herself of a long holder to keep her gloves away from the slim cigarette she’s presently torching her way through. The whiskey in her other hand means that she’s got a very valid reason to keep at least a small distance from the grey haired, well appointed man opposite her in a black velvet mask that covers his face from brow to upper lip and thereby robs onlookers of any hope of identification.

Robs them of any hope… if their eyes are the only way they have to scry it, anyway.


Even when one occupies no physical space it's simply no fun being stood over or passed right on through without acknowledgment. Naturally it's to be expected when one is a ghost, but even in death, the unusual pair that have attended the party this evening find it quite rude.

Jim Craddock finds himself alone for the time being, his ghostly companion for the evening having decided she wished to tour the grounds alone and unseen. After this night she would finally properly pass on, and while attending a club masquerade hasn't been all she'd expected, she's decided to make the most of it. From the dark look he'd caught in her eye and the smile on her decaying lips, Craddock expected she might make for a bit of poltergeist mischief before she did so.

Whatever the late Lady Harris might have planned, the Gentleman Ghost could care less. He's gotten what he'd sought after; an invitation to the exclusive gathering, and while he hadn't exactly been particularly impressed he wasn't exactly here for the party itself. The cold spills into the halls, accompanying him as he threads his way through the overflow of guests. He brings along an unusual stillness as he slips into the one particular lounge. The smoky haze seems befitting an ambiance for the man in otherworldly whites, and at this moment he does not hide what he is, nor act like anything is out of the ordinary as he makes a show of dusting himself off and straightening the hat that floats above the rest of his attire.

The hovering monocle turns with said hat, the only indication of the face unseen as he casts a glance towards those already occupying the room. He brings a gloved hand up to tip his hat.


Maybe it was the wrong room before, but there's certainly attention now. Craddock brings with him the chill of night, but there's also the fact that there's far less to distract now. This isn't the room where the entertainment is supposed to be. And, until this moment, it hasn't been. Now there are full grown men who stumble back, women who gasp, and a large number of bodies trying to squeeze out the small parlor door.

And Emma, who until this point, was content to smoke her cigarette, drops beneath their notice, forgotten and left behind in their flight. "I assume you had an invitation," she asks coolly, once they are alone.


Craddock stands where he is, even as the other guests hurry to avoid him, which given where he stands and the doorway itself, is probably difficult to near impossible. He himself remains unruffled by the abrupt departures, turning his attention to the woman who remains.

He'd caught glimpses of her during the earlier festivities, perhaps heard whispers of her name and her renown, but even without, it had not been difficult to determine that there's some air of importance to her. It's the way she carries herself, how she looks at and interacts with others.

The Ghost removes his hat, leaving the floating monocle as the only reference point to his invisible face.

"Actually I come as a guest of an invitation holder. A…plus one, I believe they call them these days?" A beat. "Wonderful party."

His tone is accented, British, if perhaps tinged with something tending more to their north.


"We pride ourselves on them," responds the blonde, dragging another long poisonous pull from of her cigarette. There's at least one immediate perk of the frantic fleeing: it clears the better seat by the small fire that she prefers. She settles into the chair, pulling her drink and an ashtray along with her.

It is perhaps in the otherworld that the specter might see her best, her eyes shining now with a pale blue glint that those departing cannot see as she leans upon her astral sight.

Her own accent is a stolen one, taken from a man who'd never known any city but London and who studied at the Imperial College. It wasn't the only thing she'd stolen from him without his knowledge, but it's the one that she keeps closest. The one that separates her just one degree more from her Bostonian family.

"Here for the swan pastries? My personal favorite so far has been the roast partridge with the pear chutney. I was so worried it was going to be too dry."

She should have felt the intrusion sooner. She chides herself inwardly for it.


Tall hat still held in hand, his cane is maneuvered by the other as he turns, first to watch as the woman steps towards the freshly vacated seat by the fire before following after, if only to keep a respectable distance from her as they converse. The firelight fails to reflect off his monocle and the bauble crowning his cane, even as he faces the mantle to regard the flickering flames beneath it.

Here now with no other distractions he can get a better sense of the woman, although even then it's just a hint of the secrets she possesses. She's not one to be trifled with, certainly, but then she would not hold the position she does without good reason.

His finger taps lightly against the head of his cane, a light chuckle sounding at her smalltalk. "Ah, but they did look quite appetizing," he admits. "Unfortunately I find myself unable to properly enjoy food as I once had."

He lets the silence creep in after his response, save for the subtle and intermittent crackle of the fireplace.


"Ah, a travesty, that," Frost offers back. "They taste better than they look, and they're very prettily put together." Settling more deeply into her chair, Emma closes her eyes for a moment to savor the mix of it all. The heat of the fire as it warms her and the hem of her provocative gown. The cigarette. The liquor.

She continues, "The music, perhaps? The drummers are frequent guests of the Egyptian embassy in Washington, I'm told. God only knows where they picked up the flutists, but I haven't heard anything about bleeding ear drums so I am left to assume that they are passably talented."


"Methinks once enough wine and the like has been passed about then it matters not too much what sort of music might be played, be they skilled or in want. 'twas pleasant enough an ambiance, when it could be heard above the murmuring guests." Craddock shrugs slightly.

"There be little enough of the past that lingers e'en in such times as these. Call it for curiosity's sake that I find myself drawn to the festivities this evening. They say the dead tell no tales, but there be enough whispers about things if one bends an ear in the right places, during the right time."

There's the vaguest hint of a smile in his words, his monocle lifting slightly as he casts an idle look at the decor of the room and the shadows cast upon the wall.

"You intrigue me, madam. Whilst all have fled, yet you linger. Not many be so willing to entertain a ghost, though if it be in part considered one's responsibility as hostess, then I suppose it can't be helped."


“Well, really, what’s there to be done for it,” Emma ponders as she draws languid circles from the smoke that curls up from the end of her stick, “even if I weren’t of a mind to let you stay? You had an invitation, but if you hadn’t…? Do I call an exorcist? Hardly seems right, given the name of the place. I might end up losing half the guest list.”

She takes a bracing drink and sinks in for a minute.

“And who says I’m the hostess, anyway? I’m just a mindful member who knows how to keep her eyes open, even when knowing that open eyes sometimes see stranger things.”

The decor of this particular room is themed in emerald and gold. The walls are a tone-on-tone damask, and the seating is draped in tone-on-tone green stripe brocade. The windows—generously sized—span nearly floor to ceiling and have been dressed in a thick velvet with golden fringe that pools upon the floor and pullbacks of golden cords with thick tassels. It is absolutely indulgent, but the sort of understated indulgence that is the sensibility of old money but the delight of the nouveau riche.

“I’d be careful about what whispers you go about looking for, were I you. Some are not really meant for your ears.”


Craddock chuckles, once again offering a shrug. "Indeed, there may be those who find it their right to dwell within these halls with or without invitation. I thought it'd be best to do things properly. But if you wish me gone, I shall take no offense."

Ah but how the place evokes more comfortable a feel than anything more modernly furnished. Another time, another place and perhaps he would have been used to such luxuries around him. But then he probably wouldn't be what he is today either, centuries later on an altogether different continent.

The woman's comment to follow has him smile to himself, and the monocle dips as he offers a small nod. "Apologies then, for any misunderstandings, madam. But you do carry about yourself such a presence that 'twould be befitting."

Turning, Craddock allows himself a bit of wandering, all yet within the vicinity of the fireplace as he makes a show of studying the borderline opulent furnishings, just within the boundaries of tastefulness.

"One cannot help for hearing some things, madam. Sometimes the dead have nothing better to do, and one's secrets in life may well be considered pointless in their afterstate."


Emma carries herself like the hostess? Sanguine lips turn a sly curve and nothing but trouble and that psychic glow shines from her pale eyes. “So that’s truly all that brings you? A curiosity?”

Does her telepathy work against ghosts? Does her extra sense of the astral world that surrounds them help?

She tries her hand at it as she asks the question of Craddock, trying to suss out if there’s any feeling at all about whether or not he’ll tell the truth when he answers her.


The monocle turns just so, a glance cast over his shoulder, back towards the woman seated there, and were he still of flesh and blood he might have had a shiver go down his spine just from the eerie expression that touches Emma's face. Craddock turns again towards her, resting his cane in front of him, his hands and the hat he yet holds set atop of the violet bauble.

He has nothing to hide on the matter, and partial truths are, in his book, not an outright lie, and those he knows better than to offer here. He may not be an easy read with telepathy, not without a bit of adjusting like the old tuner of a radio.

"For the most part," he admits with the slightest cant of his invisible head. Curiosity can stand as such a vague basis for a great many things. "I otherwise doubt that such an organization has allowed for membership of the dead, but then I suppose much of what it seems to offer would be of little use to me."

There's a hint of a smirk in his tone, a faint shrug of his shoulders.

—-

The woman in the white lace mask considers the ghost, and then, at long last, lifts herself up to her feet. “I would suppose so,” she tells him, draining her cup and setting it with a dull ‘thunk’ on one of the numerous occasional tables for a maid to collect later.

“Were I you,” she continues, although this time it seems that she’s of a mind to move towards the door, “It seems that there might be some enjoyment to be found in telling a few people that you’re the Ghost of Christmas Past. It’s the right season for it, and it has felt a little bit crowded in the hall…”


His response isn't quite a laugh and neither a snort, but perhaps somewhere in between. As Emma stands, he offers a bow before bringing his hat up once again to sit upon air over cravat and collar.

"Not that it wouldn't necessarily be inaccurate, saving the 'Christmas' part," the Gentleman Ghost replies. "Mayhaps the Lady Harris has already helped to air out the halls in her rounds, but I would have to agree in that there does seem quite the unhealthy number of people gathered out there."

With the woman looking to exit, the ghost steps over to the door to open it for her.


“What can I say? I find it hard it hard to resist a theme.”

Emma pauses at the door, and one corner of her mouth turns a degree higher than the other. “Just don’t cause too much trouble, and I’m certain it will be fine.”

She, for the moment, is content enough to let him terrorize the general membership at his leisure. After all, a little terror will give them something to talk about. She’s more than willing to take an easy route to a party that is talked about for the next few months without any extra effort on her part.

…and part of her wonders if they’ll get credit for cutting edge ambiance. Perhaps that is the greatest reason of all as to why she stops at the doorway before going through it, and offers, “Merry Christmas.”


A smile not entirely kind touches his face as he tips his hat to the lady as she exits. He offers no wishings of a Merry Christmas or otherwise in turn, but the cold follows her, seeping into the hall as he steps out after her and then fades from sight.

Dismissed to play the part of themed entertainment. The thought rankles him, and as he sweeps through the halls unseen he brings with him the creeping abnormal chill that always accompanies disgruntled spirits. Finding himself once again in the main room he pauses, watching as party guests filter around and through him in all their finery, preening under the attention that they gain and never try to give equally in turn.

That smile returns on his face, cold and ironic. Ah, yes. How the centuries may go by and yet however much may change with time, never the hearts of the wealthy. The Gentleman Ghost tucks his cane beneath an arm, adjusting the fit of one glove, then the other with a light tug.

Fine, madam. I'll play the part this eve. But my services won't be for free, he thinks. Here all around him, pockets and purses a plenty to be plundered. Surely a few baubles and trinkets won't go amiss, especially with such careless carousing.

Merry Christmas indeed.

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