So this is my sequel to 'Brief Kissing Incidents' and 'Mitzvah' by the ever-talented karabair, with permission, of course. It's set in the movie verse, between the first movie and the second. A few actual X-Men quotes from the comics are hidden in here (kudos if you can find them). Emma's quote about seeing the psychologist comes from the FPC AldersonAdmissions & Orientation (A&O) Handbook (on the website). There's also a reference to Jeremiah. Melisande is an OC, meant to be a somewhat moderating effect on Emma as well as partner, while Tessa (Sage) and Destiny (Irene Adler) are from the comics. As for the visiting regulations Melisande didn't keep… Read them: FPC AldersonVisiting Regulations (13e). I'm sure that knowing Emma's taste in partners, you'll be able to guess. If anybody has any questions, mention them in your review and I'll try to answer.
Of course, reviews and feedback are solicited and greatly appreciated.
Scott accompanied the Professor through the security inspections and rule briefing, all the while wondering what Emma Frost wanted of him. She wanted him, or so it had seemed; but she must know she couldn't have him, especially now. So what did she want?
He asked the Professor, just before they came in. The Professor looked at him and shrugged. "Not even I have ever completely understood Emma Frost", he answered.
Scott looked at him. "But you could if you wanted to", he retorted sullenly.
The Professor shook his head, knowing it was not meant. "You know I will never do that, Scott", he said, content with a mild reproach. Scott refrained from reminding him that Emma would never posses such scruples. With a sigh, he stepped into the meeting room.
Scott was stricken by surprise at his first view of Emma Frost. He did not know what he had expected; a cowed woman, the law finally applying to her, or a defiant one, angry at the world daring to tame her; but he never expected to see her unchanged, sitting in her chair and uniform as though they were a throne and royal mantle, with such assurance and poise that one would be certain she owned the room.
She rose elegantly, and kissed the Professor on his cheeks, murmuring a greeting. She then turned to Scott, who stood stiffly before her. Rather than kissing him, she merely looked into his eyes, considering, and then returned to her seat. Scott sat down, still nervous.
"Emma", the Professor began. "How have you been?"
"Mostly bored", she answered, tossing her head back. "Not only is there little to do, but it is all so plebeian. My only comfort is in knowing that the proletariat pays for some of it."
"Indeed", the Professor replied, smiling a little. "Still, have you found nothing of interest?"
Emma considered. "Well, I have improved my volleyball game, and kept my electronics skills in practice – could you believe they thought I would agree to be a teaching assistant? I've found time to hone my other skills, read several fascinating books, and make a point of speaking to the Psychology Counselor at least once a week, since it 'can teach you some principles of human relations, help you to gain insight, and can lead to increased self-confidence and more responsible, rational problem-solving skills.'
"And are we your first visitors?"
She laughed, obviously amused. "Of course not. Tessa tries to come by at least once a week, and Melisande makes a point of flying over for the weekend. You know, I'm rather certain she doesn't keep the visiting regulations."
The Professor frowned, obviously displeased. "Tessa?" he asked.
Emma smiled. "Yes, Tessa. She was Shaw's personal assistant for some time, but after some… unpleasantness, he got rid of her. I immediately hired her. She was appointed interim CEO in my absence – the best choice the government ever approved." Her tone made it clear the government had not had much of a choice in the matter.
The Professor shook his head. "What did you do to make this happen, Emma, and when?" Scot had never heard his voice so menacing.
"Oh, some time ago", Emma replied lightly. "You really should try to keep better track of people. As for doing something… I was content doing what you did – exactly nothing. But we must have differed on when we should break our inaction. It seems that being my pet was preferable than being your tool. And once I had her, why should I not have made use of her munificent talents?"
Scott was confused. Emma was implying the Professor had abandoned this woman. But the Professor always tried to save everyone he could. He decided to change subject, and resolved to ask the Professor about it later. "You wanted to speak to us. What about?"
Emma glanced at him, no longer amused. "Such manners. What do you teach them, Charles?" The question was clearly rhetoric. "I personally did not want anything, but Melisande convinced me it may be a good idea to warn you, if only so I can say 'I told you so' later."
"Who is Melisande?" The Professor queried, unsurprised.
"My partner", Emma smiled, and for the first time it was genuine. "She's my co-headmistress, and is running the Academy in my absence."
The Professor nodded. "And what did she you decide to warn us about?"
For the first time in the conversation, Emma looked away, breaking eye contact. She had a faraway look in her eyes. "Do you know, I can practically envision what happened at Westchester when you first received news of my incarceration? No doubt Katherine let out some expletive, in a delightfully common way of expressing joy. Your darling Jean showed that behind her pacifistic posturing hides a playground bully, evincing great delight at my fall. Ororo proved her poor upbringing by gloating. At this point, it was explained to all those wondering waifs you've picked up since our last meeting that I was the Snake in Eden, the person who received thirty pieces of silver from Caiaphas, convinced Benedict Arnold to turn to England, and the source of all other assorted temptations, betrayals and sins that have gone on since the beginning of this world, yes?"
"How- What- Why-" Scott sputtered, baffled. How could Emma tell that with such accuracy? Was she reading his mind, seeing the memory of the occurrence?
Emma smirked. "No, darling, I haven't read your mind. It's just that another one of my similarities with Charles is that I'm a people person. I have long ago figured out exactly how you and every other hypocrite in your little team of spandex-wearing fools think."
Scott rose, angry. "You have no right to insult us." 'Calm Down', the Professor sent at him. 'She's only trying to bait you'.
Emma stared at him, her eyes hard. "Really, Scott? But I thought you X-Men were all about truth and justice. If you have the right to insult me, why don't I have the right to insult you?"
The Professor stepped it. "This is leading us nowhere. Emma, you have information I need to know. Are you willing to reveal it, or not?"
Emma considered while Scott sat down. She had no great will to reveal anything to these sainted fools. The only reason she had even considered it was because Melisande urged it, and for the pleasure of being proven right. Now, though, another reason was added: tearing the masks from their faces, revealing their ugliness and prejudice, and finally making them admit her superiority.
She decided to risk it after all. And why not? She had nothing to lose. "Very well. I'll tell you my little secret. I was absolutely guilty of tax evasion and insider trading."
The Professor drew in a breath. Scott was even more confused. "You mean you didn't use your tel- … skills… to gain that information?"
Emma clapped her hands. "Indeed. I used the old mundane way. Made a bit of money over it – some $ 80,000 or so, was summarily caught, plead guilty, fined $ 400,000, and sent here for eight months. "
The Professor massaged his head, trying to make sense of it. "Why?"
Emma looked at him, weighing her answer. "Because I needed to. I may believe that the future doesn't have a formula and is all desperate improvisation. But I have learned not to doubt the Diaries. And it was their advice that I do this."
Questions seemed to keep piling up. "The Diaries?"
Emma nodded. "Yes. Irene Adler, sometimes knows as Destiny, wrote a series of them. Very interesting reads."
The Professor frowned, steepling his hands. "Come now, Emma. Are you trying to tell me you made some insane decision based on some old legend? You must have had an ulterior motive, or you're lying."
Emma eyes flashed. "Charles, Charles, Charles", she said condescendingly. "There sound the words of a lesser being. Only those as low as you would begin to think that legends do not exist. Are not we a legend? From my childhood, I was raised to believe that I was a breed apart from lesser mortals. But it was more than that – I believed I could rise to heights never dreamed of. That I could indeed become a legend. And when I was barely eighteen, on the first steps of my journey, I found my Destiny. And I saw the glorious threads of it being woven, the seemingly random beauty of it, the way it never remained static, always moving in new ways like snowflakes coming down in a blizzard. From then on, I never wavered in my search for it.
"As for an ulterior motive, of course I had one."
The Professor decided to interrupt. "I am sorry, Emma, but I am not certain I believe you. Besides giving me no reason to trust you, you are not the most rational of people… and you are quite uncaring, especially of others. It seems odd to me that you would suddenly start to care."
Emma stared at him, incredulous. "Have you been lobotomized recently? I am irrational because I do not care about others? I care only for those I appreciate. Why should I care for a bunch a meaningless sheep, trying to play shepherd to me and mine?"
"Do you know Charles, why I consider myself set apart from either you or Eric and your followers? It goes beyond class and breeding. You see, you and Eric are idealists. You believe you can attain some perfect world. You may be on opposite ends of the spectrum – Eric is a pessimist, and believes he must fight to get there, while you are an optimist, and believe talking will get you there – but you both believe you can get there.
"I don't. I pride myself on being a pragmatist and realist. I've seen life at its worst and best, and believe me, it is no different. If my experience was not enough, I was counseled by a woman who saw hundreds of years that were different in infinite ways, but at the end were the exact fucking same. Your ideal is a utopia which will never come about, and even if it does, it will quickly become dystopian.
"Would you like me to tell you the future, Charles? One doesn't need to have Destiny's powers to do so. Destruction will come for you, and quickly. It will attempt to make use of you, and when it will not be able to you, it will obliterate you. The same will come for Eric, and if he lasts longer, it will only be because he'll fight for a time… until they bring in forces which will destroy even him.
"Meanwhile, elsewhere, the White Queen will be released from jail. The public will see that her scarlet sins have turned as white as snow, and she has learned humility, content to be joint-CEO of her own company, and co-Headmistress of her Academy. They will see what was always there – a woman who survived things you could not dream of, rising again and again from the conflagration of the phoenix to battle it."
Scott stared in shock. "You're lying. There's no way this could be true. Not everybody's nice, but people are basically good."
Emma stared at him flatly. Suddenly, his mind was hit by a welter of images: a young man cutting his wrists, a red eyed woman in black laughing at husks of bodies, men being whipped while tied to a cross, people in dark rooms laughing and smoking, dead children, a pale woman in a black leather outfit holding a blond in white leather for comfort, and more. Images of human pain, avarice, indifference, cruelty, and all the negative emotion he could ever name. Lastly, he saw a huge firebird burning the world, while a light like a diamond shone, fighting it, surviving against all odds. And he felt a fear and loathing that were aimed at something that could never be human.
"Stop it, Emma!" The Professor said, his voice harsh with pain. "I understand your need to do this to me, but what is Scott to you?"
Emma smiled, and he shuddered. It was the smile of pleased beast, about to bring down its prey, the glint of a diamond cold and uncaring. "Every master requires an audience for his genius. But you see, if the audience is too smart, it may decide to try and foil me. I've chosen Scott because his brain cannot understand the vastness of the struggle going on, so he cannot affect it in any meaningful way. In addition…" She abruptly changed her demeanor becoming completely serious, her voice lowering. "In addition, you are the perfect way to allow Jean to know my actions… and still not give her any advantage. I know what you say of me – but believe me, I am stronger than her, and certainly more skilled. Even with her unholy power, I will defeat her."
Emma placed her hands on the table, obviously preparing to leave. "Charles, when you're threatened, send your children to me – they're still innocent – or as innocent as any one of us can be.
"I'm a survivor, Charles", Emma Frost said, rising gracefully from her seat. "That's how I've gotten through until now – and why I'll keep getting through. Until you've learned to do that by going through what I went through, I'll not answer to you nor to Eric, and certainly not to that perversion of nature you call Jean Grey. When God judges me, I'll be sure to return the favor – and I'm doing it to you for free." She turned her back on them, and sauntered out of the room, as if she was heading towards war.
Later, back at the Mansion:
"Scott Summers, why is an image of a naked Emma Frost and another woman propositioning you in your head?"