Timelined during The Godfather
<Hope> After her trip to the restroom, Hope realized she was turned around at the hellfire club and lost. She flipped her red hair back over her shoulder and boldly headed in a direction that she thought might lead her back to her friends. However there was a bar. She stepped over to it and waited to be helped.
<Shaw> Sebastian had marked the group from Xavier's when they'd arrived and picked the redhead out early. Keeping an eye on her wouldn't be taxing at all. She was at the bar now, so he moved to join her. As soon as the patron nearest her saw him coming, he made himself scarce. Good man.
<Hope> Seemingly oblivious to the approaching man, Hope ordered her rum and coke. She considered ordering Johnny a drink, then ordered his usual for him as well. Might as well be a good girlfriend.
<Shaw> He smirked at the drink order. So, Storm wasn't one for subtlety. Shocking. Since Sebastian had already disposed of his drink for just this reason, he slid up next to her and nodded at the bartender himself. Turning slightly, he gave the girl a polite nod and half-smile.
<Hope> Cecilia had warned her not to go off alone. Now here she was with some old dude who totally just checked her out. She glanced at him with an eyebrow raised. "Good evening."
<Shaw> "Good evening." He turned just a bit more toward her, seeing no reason to completely alarm her with his full attention. "I trust you're having a good time tonight?"
<Hope> Quickly deciding it was a good idea to be polite, Hope nodded slightly. "Of course. Are you?"
<Shaw> "Well, my enjoyment is rather beside the point, since I'm required to attend." Sebastian put on his best smile and offered him her hand to shake. "Sebastian Shaw."
<Hope> "Hope Stark." She took his hand, giving him a proper handshake. "Required sounds boring."
<Shaw> "Oh, most certainly." He let her have her hand back after a beat, but didn't let up on the smile. "The evening is looking up, however."
<Hope> As her drink arrived, Hope took it and gave it a stir with the straw before taking a drink. "I find that the evening always improves in the presence of a Stark," she smirked a bit at him.
<Shaw> "True enough, and your father said much the same earlier," he admitted with a matching smirk and chuckle. As his own scotch had arrived, he picked up the glass and took a sip, watching her.
<Hope> "Because it's true." She smiled at him a bit, setting her drink down after another sip. "So you are the famous benefactor I should thank for supporting the school."
<Shaw> "Indeed, and you are most welcome. It's been a pleasure over the years to come to know so many of you." And now that he'd had time to check his files, it was even more interesting.
<Hope> "Well you certainly helped me with my 'Cinderella' story." She lifted her drink slightly to drink to him, then took a sip.
<Shaw> "I'm pleased I could be of service." He nodded acknowledgment and took another drink himself. "And don't hesitate to call on me, if you believe I can be of any additional service."
<Hope> "And what kind of service would that be?" She asked, genuinely curious. She had secret service agents. She had Tony. What else would she need?
<Shaw> "Any kind at all," he said smoothly, one eyebrow lifting. "While your father has significant influence in many areas, sometimes another kind of influence is required."
<Hope> "Tell me more about this influence you bring to the table." She took a steady sip of her beverage again.
<Shaw> "You know what the Hellfire Club is, I assume?" Or, perhaps she didn't.
<Hope> "Sort of. What I gathered is that rich people gather to conduct business behind the scenes... and hit on the young women." Poor Cecilia.
<Shaw> Sebastian laughed, taking the time for another drink at that. "Quite right, on both counts, though there is more to it than that."
<Hope> "As you know, Tony isn't great with details. Please elaborate." She smiled at him more easily, eying Johnny's shot. Maybe she should drink it and order him another one.
<Shaw> "All this," he gestured at the room with his drink, "is for show, as you've most likely guessed. There are many members of the Hellfire Club, and as Tony is a member, you are a hereditary member as well."
<Hope> "I figured out that much at least." She wasn't an idiot after all. The fact that Cee had told her was irrelevant.
<Shaw> He smirked. "What's more interesting is the club inside the Club, an organization that circles the globe as well, yet has a more intimate membership."
<Hope> "Afraid I don't follow... what do you mean?"
<Shaw> "The inner circle historically has been made up of the leaders of their time - presidents, masters of industry... you get the idea." Sebastian cast his gaze around the room again before coming back to Hope.
<Shaw> "More recently, as the human race has evolved into, well, us, younger members have been inducted, as much for their potential as for their genetic makeup."
<Hope> Why was he telling her all of that? "Is Tony in this 'inner circle?'
<Shaw> Sebastian gave her a slight nod, taking another drink.
<Hope> "Seems like he has his hand in many cookie jars." Hope took another sip, studying Sebastian. She should warn him of something. But it could wait.
<Shaw> "Don't we all?" He smiled. "It's necessary."
<Hope> "Afraid I'm new to this world. I'll keep that in mind, however." Apparently it was a good idea she had ventured from the group after all. She assumed her last name was the only reason he wasn't trying to get into her pants... or was he?
<Shaw> "At one time, we all were." Taking another drink, he licked his lips before he continued. "I myself came from a rather humble background. It helps to make acquaintances."
<Hope> "And that's what the club is for? To network?"
<Shaw> "Of course." He stared at his scotch, deciding on his next words. "And it can be convenient to have contacts who are not immediately related to you, yes?"
<Hope> "Seems to be. I have much to learn about this world you have grown accustomed to." She smirked again, taking another drink.
<Shaw> "Your father is an old friend of mine, but I know what it's like to be young." He sat his drink on the bar and reached inside his jacket, producing a card he handed to her. "Parents need not know everything, after all."
<Hope> "He has a knack for it, considering I have shadows." She took the card anyway, inspecting it.
<Shaw> "It's necessary both to protect you and his interests," he shrugged with one shoulder, resuming his drink.
<Hope> "And to make sure I don't cause another international incident. I get it." She tucked the card away into her clutch.
<Shaw> "That is most likely a motivation as well," he smirked. Tilting his head, he decided to indulge his curiosity. "I understand you can sense abilities and mimic them."
<Hope> "Indeed. Which reminds me... I advise you to stay out of my head."
<Shaw> Sebastian sucked in a breath, but quickly schooled his features into a bland smile. "As you know, I haven't attempted to get in to your head this evening, my dear."
<Hope> "This evening." She carefully took another sip. "Telepaths have a nasty habit of trying. They don't like what they find."
<Shaw> "My ability is hardly worth the title of telepath." He mirrored her sip, meeting her eyes. "And very rarely used." Now he smirked. "Certainly not used on one who could tell I was reading her."
<Hope> "So you use it on unsuspecting young women. For shame." She tsked, but smirked playfully.
<Shaw> "It has its advantages." He grinned.
<Hope> Hope laughed at him and raised her finger for the bartender to bring them another round. "Indeed I can see that it would. Maybe one day I'll have need for it."
<Shaw> "Oh really? So are you able to tuck my abilities away for a rainy day, so to speak?"
<Hope> "Not yet. But if you are within say... a couple of miles, I can borrow them."
<Shaw> "Truly fascinating. Just when I think I've seen most everything in mutant variations, another new ability pops up." He raised his glass to her before finishing the drink.
<Hope> Hope was happy to laugh and stir her fresh drink. "Well, stick around. Mine keeps getting better."
<Shaw> "Oh, I will, most assuredly." Sebastian flashed her a wink and set his glass on the bar with a clink.
<Hope> "On that note, I have a cute blonde that is possibly wondering where I am." Or hitting on a girl.
<Shaw> "Jonathan Storm. Not quite my type of blonde, though his sister is quite lovely." He inclined his head. "Don't let me keep you then. It was a pleasure to meet you."
<Hope> "She's not into you." Hope tried to save him some embarrassment on that front. "But yes, it was a pleasure." She smiled and took both drinks, picking a direction she thought Johnny might be located.
<Shaw> He raised his eyebrows at that, watching her go, admittedly appreciatively. His lips curled into a sly smile. Interesting.
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