When in Metropolis
Roleplaying Log: When in Metropolis
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Emma comes to visit Tony Stark in Metropolis, because she absolutely was there anyway for legitimate business reasons.

Other Characters Referenced:
IC Date: March 21, 2019
IC Location: Metropolis
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 31 Mar 2019 04:02
Rating & Warnings: PG
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

There are advantages, sometimes, to not being above cheating. Particularly, when one is not above it by a long shot. A very long shot.

Emma Frost would be such a one, and—every so often—she likes to remind others of it. Not because she likes for others to remember to stay on their toes, per se, but rather because she wants them to think it through very, very, very carefully before they attempt to cross her.

Because she also is very keen on revenge.

Which leads us to this particular moment, wherein she packs an overnight bag and tells her butler to not bother coming by in the morning. She has her assistant make a phone call or two, and then the mind witch hops on a small private plane destined for Delaware—specifically to a private landing strip just outside of the painfully shiny city of Metropolis.

Her assistant has hired a car, and it waits for her there. She takes the keys of the lovely white Mercedes convertible (which apparently had to be driven in from out of state to suit her preferences, but that’s a detail for People Who Are Not Her™ ), and then drives into the pretty city. Or, more accurately, to a particular building.

And she parks. And she rolls the rag top down, as though she’d driven the whole way there like that in the fifty degree weather and somehow managed to keep her fancy updo in its presently pristine condition. And she sets her head against the back of her seat and lets her mind acclimate to the unfamiliar psychic terrain of her new surroundings.


It is so shiny.

So much hope and dreams.

Which is most likely why Stark had not had her meet him at the actual construction site, that might have been just too much. Instead it’s a glitzy little hotel one of the more fancy ones in the city. Owned and operated by Lex-corp of course. But then again very little of the city isn’t. However the largest suite available, nearly half a floor all told has been rented out by on Tony Stark for at least some of his stay in the city.

I mean he can’t sleep in a construction zone can he?

Well he could, but that would just be rude.

The mental landscape of this little area itself does have that same Metropolis shine to it, but up top. In that penthouse suite is a mind that /never/ stops thinking. A very familiar mind in point of fact. One that even at ‘rest’ spins faster than most of those on the planet. And right now? It is definitely not at rest. Stark is /designing/.


Emma allows the nauseatingly naive optimism that surrounds her flow by her, knowing there are always the darker undercurrents for those who look for them. The deadly rapids that wait up ahead.

Optimism, even in its greater concentration here, is an ephemeral, fleeting thing.

Thus, she mostly ignores it. Instead, her awareness hones in on that keenly familiar intellect with its flavor of “other” and the corner of her mouth pricks upwards with dark amusement.

«So,» she ponders into his thoughts, twirling a short strand of flaxen hair by her ear as she goes about interrupting without warning or apology. «A night in or out, darling?» Even though it is still late afternoon.

——

«Emma?» The thought comes almost immediately as the stream of thought comes to a relative still. «Well well, isn’t this a surprise. I had planned for a night in, designing something.» A pause. «I’m going to assume you figured that out already.»

He pauses again, a smirk crossing his face.

«So, where are you and to what do I owe this little visit?»


As she nestles down into her seat, eyes still closed behind the enormous gold mirror lenses of her sunglasses, Frost’s entire expression resolves into one of quiet satisfaction. Nowhere is that more clearly evident, though, than the wicked turn of her smile.

«I figured that part out already,» she confirms in an echo, her impish amusement infusing the thought in the strange and oft-off putting way of psychics, communicating its subtle flavor more clearly than tone of voice ever could.

To what does he owe the visit? Emma is hardly forthcoming about the details. «And I’m not telling you anything helpful. That’s desperately boring. But I will say that this hotel you’re staying in doesn’t have the worst taste in landscaping that I’ve ever seen. Not the gardens at Versailles, certainly, but we can’t all tax the peasants at our whim.» A pause, and then, just for show, she holds out and studies her nails of one hand in the air between the steering wheel and windshield of the rented car. «And… at least it’s close to the airport. I can make a strategic escape as soon as I’m bored. That’s terribly convenient.»


«You know if you gave me a hint we could get to the fun part of the visit faster, right?» There is amusement in Stark’s mental tone as he shoots her the thought, even as he sits up in his chair where he was relaxing in. There is a wry twist of a smile that finds its way to his lips as he rolls his shoulders.

«But. Lets see. You saw the front view of the hotel which means you came in by the main entrance. Wouldn’t want to park out front somewhere, so in the garage. Near the elevators I’m going to hazard the guess…»

He snaps his fingers which brings one of the many tiny drones of his to attention and with a gesture and quick mental burst of static he sends it zipping out the window towards the garage to take a peek.

Two people can play at the game right?

«And you flew in.» He adds with a smirk as he starts to stand, grabbing for one of his jackets. «North entrance is closer to that turn in…but thanks for the info. I suppose that /does/ mean I’ll have to keep you unbored if I want to pry what secret brought you all the way out here.»


The game is absolutely best played with two, and Emma is presently basking in the front loop—not parked in the lot, but blocking the exterior lane with all of the air that this is absolutely acceptable behavior. And her smile grows by the passing minute.

«I generally frown on boredom, so I would recommend keeping me from it, just as a general principle. But I promise to repay in kind.»

Someone complains. Her smile fades just long enough for her to instill a healthy dose of fear for what her glare could mean, and then suddenly the blocked lane doesn’t matter quite so much.

——

Scans come back from the dones, parking garage is empty. Tony smirks slightly to himself as he murmurs. “Yeah, that /would/ be too easy. Since when has she made things easy on me.”

Again the drone is sent out, joined by a half dozen little brothers to do a wider sweep of the area. Full scan systems. Mostly because, like Emma, Stark cheats his ass off at games like this.
«You always do, beautiful. You always do.» Stark has to give credit where credit is do after all. «Making me work to find you hrmm? With not even a hint what this visit was about huh? Was New York that boring without little old me?»

A pause.

«Please say yes.»

—-

As the drones spread out in the new hunt, the blonde in her sporty little car only continues to make a greater show of examining her nails. Her head tilts this way and that, acting completely oblivious of the fact that now people are coordinating use of the one remaining lane in order to get by her entitled bumper.

Metropolis now learns why New York is grateful that Emma keeps a chauffeur on retainer: because Emma is an unrepentant jerk behind the wheel when she puts her mind to it. There’s more than one irritated honking horn in the minutes that follow now.

«Now I can’t say yes, because—if I do—it looks like I’m capitulating. And I don’t capitulate. I have a reputation to uphold. You’ll have to wonder about that, too, now. It all swirls together and just adds to my wonderful mystery, but I can say that a little bit of work rarely goes unrewarded. But that does beg the question, what were you working on? I would have pegged you out and about this evening, surveying the new playing field.»


«You’re talking in my head, you do know you and I would be the only ones to ever know about any capitulating right?» Stark shoots back as he makes his way to the elevator, heading down to the lobby. «And the new playing field has an incredible number of annoying regulations and rules that I’m still trying to work though. I swear the feds don’t even have this many flying ordinances. I suppose though…when in Rome.»

«Also I’m pretty sure my hotel room isn’t bugged. Just staked out by reporters. Never can be sure when you get out of the house now can you?»

Just add to her already justifiable paranoia right?

«As for what I was working on, Space stuff. Which you have repeatedly told me has no interest to you in the slightest. If that’s changed I still have that suit to fit you for…» A pause. «Would /you/ rather get out in the wide wide world of this overly shiny city?» The elevator dings as information updates flash in the corner of his glasses, a smirk growing on his face as he starts for the front door.
«White Mercedes? How could I guess.»


Emma, still absolutely blocking the lane, pulls her sunglasses up in her still-running car just long enough to bestow upon Tony the full power of her glare.

“Get in the car,” she tells him flatly before letting the lenses block her pale gaze once more, ignoring everything else that she doesn’t really think that she needs to actually answer, the words resonating softly as she doesn’t quite back out all of her telepathic presence. “The peasants are grumbling about my choice of parking space and I think they’re about to haul out the guillotine.”


There is a cheery wave for the people backed up behind her as Stark opens the door, smirking slightly as he simply vaults over the door and into the open top of the convertible. “Your wish is my command o’ lady in white.” He returns with that same cavalier smirk that usually finds its way to his face when they happen to be together.

“I see you’ve been making friends with the natives.” He adds as he reaches for the seatbelt. “But we can’t have them ruining the car with any messy off with their heads business. At least not before I work out just why you’re here.” A pause. “You do know if you don’t tell me I’m just going to assume you missed me.”


“You’ll assume it anyway.” Again, that is neither confirmation nor denial, but Emma doesn’t really care. …Okay, also not entirely true, but it’s really too late to do the best thing for avoiding looking like she missed him: just not come.

She waits until the seatbelt clicks, and then finally moves the car into gear. ….Reverse first, with the full intention of giving the angriest car—the one immediately behind her—the start of a heart attack. She stops it before she actually makes contact, pantomimes an airy ‘Oops! Hahaha!’, and then promptly puts the car into drive. She pushes the button to put the top back up before they’ve even left the hotel’s loop.

“And I think ‘friends’ is a terribly generous way of putting it.”

As she rolls out into the main thoroughfare, Frost proves that she is just as circumspect in her driving as in her other affairs and the polar opposite of the man beside her. She affords him an appraising glance, and then smirks. “So, before we get to the wishes that you’ll be granting later, is there anywhere actually decent to eat? I think I had a layover here once a few years ago, and I promptly forgot everything about it.”


“Of course I will,” Stark’s reply is lazy and amused as he leans back, eyes slanted just enough to watch her behind the dark lenses of his glasses. “It is what I do after all. I have a reputation to uphold too don’t I?”

Backing up causes him to laugh though, shaking his head as he gives a swift bark of amusement. “You are terrible.” He states as they pull away. “But yeah, I’ve found a few places. Only one I bought, but not from lack of trying. Luthor owns almost everything around here and no one wants to cross him.”

There is a flash of a grin. “Except me of course, but you know me. I’m just as terrible.” A beatpause. “Upscale sushi or Italian?” He asks as he quirks an eyebrow, giving her the choice.

—-

“Sushi, I think. My trainer is on me about the carbs again. Which,” A shrug follows, “I suppose I can tolerate for a little bit. He gets so cranky when I am relentlessly telling him I’m not going to listen to him.”

The car moves smoothly, a perfect waste of the power it’s capable of. But doesn’t that speak a truth, too, of its operator? Emma’s eyes remain on the road as she considers.

“Yes, I suppose you’re right,” she allows after a moment, her tone playfully flat. “‘Terrible’ fits me very well. I’m going to have to just add that to my ever-growing list of character flaws. Are there any others I should note while I’ve got the proverbial notepad out? Because I should warn, I’ll need to verify all additions by inflicting them on someone in the course of the evening. Just to be sure they’re appropriate additions, you understand. So add away, but at your own risk, darling.”


“No, no I think I’m good now.” Stark replies as he slips his hands behind his head and relaxes back in the chair. The wide smile remains on his face, his eyes closed as he lets her drive, slipping so steadily through the traffic of the city. “I like my limbs and my mind where they are. Even if my mind is strange enough to be considered insane by most people.”

A smirk again as he almost lazily flicks his wrist. As he does the holo image of a GPS map appears floating above the dashboard. “Directions.” He adds with a flash of a grin. “Since I don’t want your trainer to get /too/ mad at you. Mostly because it would make you cranky to have to find a new one.”
One eye opens though as he looks towards her again though. “Now, are you going to actually tell me?” A pause. “I’ll even buy.” A longer pause. “I mean I was going to anyway wasn’t I but now you can say you made me do it.”


“Scoping out an acquisition,” Emma allows with a roll of her eyes after, of course, glancing a couple of times to the holo projection as she makes a turn. “Make or buy, make or buy… Well, this is an easier buy. Maybe. Possibly. One of my vice presidents is supposed to be coming in in the morning.”

Then, playfully, she turns her attention more squarely in Tony’s direction and then narrows her eyes in mock scrutiny. “Does that crush you? Just a little? That I had real business in town?” She sounds nearly hopeful.

But that’s part of the game. Looking as heartless and uncaring as possible.

…Even when she doesn’t actually have a vice president coming into town.

Lying.

It’s an art.

Emma is an artist.


“Yup. Crushed. Like a bug under a rock. I don’t think that I’ll ever recover. I might not can go on. Can I have a hug?”

Stark totally looks crushed, one eye amusedly quirked towards her. Smile still on his face, hands laced behind his head as he relaxes back in the cushy chair of the car she happens to have chosen today.

Because really if he was crushed would he ever let it show.

“Just what are you buying in Metropolis anyway? Isn’t it too shiny for you?” He asks with a flash of a grin before he pauses. “And compliments to the car choice. I’ll have to steal the seat design for my next custom rig…”


“It’s a component company. And, good grief," the female CEO says, mortified, "I wouldn’t leave it here. Ship it to Hong Kong, maybe. Somewhere in the midwest, perhaps.”

She points a finger in Tony’s direction after she manages to make it through a stoplight, and into the parking lot of the restaurant in question. “And no more questions about it, else we will start giving stakeholders minor strokes.”

“Anyway, I thought I’d come in a night early. It’s been a while since I heard from you. Have to make certain that you’re not working too hard.” Once the car slides into a space, she carefully shifts the thing into park. “So. I’m glad you like the car. I’ll let you drive it on the way back. I mean, really now. What’s one more broken rule? I’m on a roll.”

She won’t admit that there is something that feels a little better to be just a little further from the registration crackdowns. A little closer to the comfortable familiar rhythm of the banter. Of him, even when that infernal buzz in his brain — his proximity in general — rarely affords her the opportunity to truly relax.

She’s accustomed to things having their price, at least. There’s that.


“Like you pay attention to rules when it doesn’t suit you. I’d say I’m rubbing off on you, but I have a feeling that started before we ever met.” Stark shoots back as he sits forwards, casting her a wicked glance with a pair of raised eyebrows.

“As for giving shareholders strokes, since when has that ever been a threat? I mean I’m pretty sure I do that by existing.”

He has a point there.

He cracks the door open step out, then, because he is five at heart, does a near perfect hood slide across the car to get to her side and open the door for her with a little flourish. He must be feeling puckish this morning.

“As for working too hard? Of course I am,” He smirks as the door opens. “I’m running the Avengers, setting up a new company, fighting with new city regulations, and building and entire new facility. And no one around to tell me to slow down and take a nap. Unless you’re volunteering for the last part.”


The telepath says nothing on the matter of her habitual rule-breaking.

But the way Tony slides across the hood of the rental paints a downright devious expression on Emma’s features, even though she knows she should be chiding him for the impropriety of it. He could scratch the paint.

She doesn’t really care about the paint.

Instead, she’s far too enamored with the notion of one more opportunity to forget all of the inconvenient things that make daily living… complicated. They are legion.

“I’m fairly certain that napping is the last thing on my list for you today,” she tells him in a low voice once the door is opened and she’s setting her low-heeled shoes onto the asphalt in order to stretch herself out into the space between her luxe leather seat and the car door. To look Tony square in the eyes. “Unless there’s a complaint, I suppose.”


“Well, good. I don’t much feel like a nap at the moment.”

Stark smiles as he closes the door behind her, letting a moment to just appreciate the blonde as she slips out of her car and onto the pavement. “Complaints? From me? Never. Not unless I was feeling particularly suicidal. And though I am prone to that I’m told, I think for this one I’ll pass.”

“Instead,” He adds as he offers her his arm with a smirk, even as the pair start to turn heads just…well…due to who they are. “I’m going to concentrate on dinner. And after that on convincing you that I am totally, completely, one hundred percent fine.” A pause. “Which is of course a lie, I’m a hot mess. But hey physically I’m great. And that is what counts right? At least for the rest of the evening.”


As she notices people watching, too, Emma’s form curls easily around Tony’s arm. It’s a flirty number she wears, a fitted chiffon dress with a dense curtain of ruffles at its hem and along its plunging v-neckline. This is a familiar and easy game, and she’ll play it like a master. One of her hands — the one not presently wrapped around his arm — snakes out, fingertips brushing against the shirt that separates them from flesh and metal and moving to slip under the lapel of his jacket in a mark of brazen familiarity.

“I can definitely work with the physical,” she promises, whispering into his ear with nothing but trouble hiding behind those mirror-like sunglasses of hers. “And you can lie just as much as you like, darling.” To her. To himself. To whoever.

The lies don’t really matter, anyway. Not to her. First, she’s comfortable enough with the idea of it. And secondly, if she changed her mind on the first point, she has the means to do something about it.


Stark. Being Stark. Always takes it one step further.

Which is why he takes that hand that fusses with his lapel in one hand to bring it to his lips. Just a teasing kiss on the back of her knuckles for a moment. Half for her, half for him, half for the audience.

Yes. That is 150 percent. Did you expect less from Tony Stark?

“You are making me want to skip dinner, little miss liar.” The man replies, eyes sparking behind his own glasses as he he sends a wicked thought at her. “But, since we’re here. And you just parked. Would be a shame to miss dinner now wouldn’t it?” He’s a terrible influence, but then again so is she.

Possibly why they fit together so well.

“So, shall we? And give the socialites of Metropolis something to actually talk about rather than the boy scout with the S on his chest?”


There are a dozen reasons why a more discreet arrangement would better suit both of them. Probably more than a dozen, if Emma would just slow down long enough to count them.

And yet, for at least this one moment more, she allows herself to be swept up in the careless variety of fun for which Tony Stark is certainly best known. Her long legs carry her beside him with all of the artful footwork that sets her to sashaying next to him.

“You know,” she confides with a wrinkle of her nose as she contentedly drinks in that off-color thought and sends one back in kind. “I never really liked Boy Scouts.”

Shocking.

—-

“Good,” Stark draws as he holds open the door for her. “Because I never was one.”

And with that he’ll escort her inside, greeting the host there by name. Asking for a quiet table for two and in general acting like the cares of the outside world don’t exist for the foreseeable future. Or at least the rest of the day. And possibly morning.

To him, this is a damn good thing.

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