Thanks, you’s on my list ;)
The Hellfire Club
In a life of hardship and revenge, there had been no greater accomplishment than the feat of redemption, Ford's, feat of redemption. Where the League of Shadows was all he had known it was still a wonder how Damon Ford came to be. Many who had heard of the League's eradication had thought to believe he had slain the Raysh'Al Shaytan to take the assets for himself; others, much more ill-informed - the public media - had thought of Ford as just another face of the Nouveau-Riche.
Ford sneered at the rumors. Only one had been slightly correct. For he had not slain the Raysh when he wished he could've, there was only one option he was left with since the eradication. Become a defector. There had been no greater gift he had been given than the gift to kill, and in determination, Ford used that gift to bear a status he knew he had to uphold.
"You do the deed of defending a mans family for a week, you do him a favor. You defend his family for the rest of their lives, you own him"
And that he lived by. His influence grew faster than he could fathom, and soon he built an empire. With the word of powerful men in his pocket and the promises of politicians in the other, there had been nothing that could topple what he had meticulously built. When rivalries became limited and promises' even more-so, Damon had brought his mission of world-dominance to the one place his underworld sovereignty hadn't touched - The United States of America.
In Spain, Damon found his home. Himself he never knew a land as foreign to him as a new dialect could once become a place he could finally feel safe in, and yet it was. Asturias was as calm as it's grand lakes and its air was as exotic as his vogue. A castle whose past was as shrouded as the man's who resided in it, La Fortaleza towered over the treasure-bearing Lake Enol, casting a shadow larger than the castle itself.
"Bring the car around, Leiland" Ford's sharp Greek tone echoed amidst. "Yes sir,"Lieldand, a young boy and son of a man who worked for Ford since the dawn of his uprising, responded his obvious Spanish dialect clashing Ford's. Upon his temple, Ford sat pondering the thoughts that had blitzed his mind in an internal blink.
"It's ready.. sir," there was a pause. "Good, call the pilot and ready the jet. I have business in New York City."
Pulling into the entrance with the subtle 'screech' of the Black-Metallic Rolls-Royce Sweptail, as if it were automated flashes of light to and fro showered the limo-tinted Rolls-Royce in a blinding light unimaginable. From the sharp reflection of light upon Ford's Rolex Datejust to the absorbent material of his violet-grey Brioni Vanquish tailored, the late arrival of the Hellfire Club's renowned White King had been impossible to ignore. Underneath the clammer of spectators, flashes of cameras, and indistinguishable greetings of likewise bystanders, the click-clack of Ford's leather-clad Tom Ford dress shoes could be heard - a sound almost identical with that of a stallion's gallop.
There were a few he granted the courtesy of posing in their picture and others the gift of shaking their hand but eventually, he made his way into the lively club. From the outside-in, there had been no distinction to the sound and overall aura. Though he didn't complain, he rarely did. A nod here a smile there, Ford hadn't the time for small-talk. Instead, he immediately found his way into the VIP section.
Premium smoke greeted his nose as the subtle halt of defining noise left his ears; for there was much to do there wasn't much to start off. He needed to rebuild, not only the White Monarchy but the Inner Circle. Few had gained Valerie's eye and the same few met Damon's, with the White Queen's word and the White King's determination the Inner-Circle of Hellfire was to live once more.
A single beam of sunlight escaped through a barrier of heavy curtains to caress Naomi’s sleeping face. The warmth gently stirred her, bringing forth consciousness she would have otherwise avoided for several more hours. Her body remained still, wrapped within an indulgent white sea of duvet blankets, however, her eyes opened with a lazy reluctance.
She watched a man move silently around her bedroom. He moved as quick as he could without betraying his presence, pulling last night’s pants over his legs before sliding his chiseled upper body into a cashmere sweater. He gathered his scattered socks and shoes, not bothering to put them on, before exiting her room with the precision of an assassin. Naomi remained still, waiting until she heard the front door, on the first floor of her flat, shut behind her guest before she finally dared to move. Her supple frame rose dreamily from her bed, carrying with her a dress of blankets to keep her exposed figure warm. She stepped to her bedroom window, peeking through the curtains to watch the man hail a taxi. With a breath of relief she reached for her bedside table, lighting a cigarette before placing her supple frame on a chair to watch the morning activity on the street below her.
They had been playing this game for years. One would call the other without warning, usually in the latest hours of the night, resulting in a rendezvous wherever the other called home at that point in time. They would make love, confess their love, and fall asleep in love; wrapped in the arms of one another. The next morning someone would wake up to an empty bed. They would not speak again until, one unexpected night, loneliness would overtake one of them, and they would repeat the same dance. It was how it had always been, and exactly how Naomi preferred it.
The Hellfire Club, New York City--The following night
“1942, neat. Merci,”
Naomi’s thick French accent dripped from her mouth as she ordered from the scantily clad Hellfire Club waitress. Music blared all around her, the hypnotic beat inspiring the human body’s desire for adrenaline and sex. She moved lithely through the heavy crowd, adorned in an understated black dress from Chanel Resort 2020. It wasn’t something she would have necessarily gone out of her way to buy, however, Virginie had sent it to her as a gift when she debuted the collection. This was how the French aristocrat attained most of her luxury possessions--as cherished gifts from friends or pieces she wore out of sympathy for lovers she had turned down. When you decline a Saudi heir’s marriage proposal, the least you can do is put good use to the diamonds he sends you.
She made her way upstairs to where the crowd began to thin, eventually landing in front of a pair of imposing double doors guarded by two men. She smiled at them.
“Miss Delacour,” they smiled back, clearly delighted to see her. One man, impossible in the size of his stature, opened his arms to Naomi.
“It has been too long. You were only little girl last time we saw you.”
“I know, darling. But you know I hate leaving Europe. How are Sofia and the kids?” Naomi asked. She embraced the security guard with a kiss on each cheek, which required him to bend his neck awkwardly low so that she could reach him without effort.
“Good, good, you are too kind for asking. Hurry inside, little one, your cousin is…in a particular mood. I’m sure she will be glad to see you.”
Naomi thanked him, promising to visit more often, before stepping into the room behind the doors.
Naomi entered a massive foyer, the entire room decorated to maintain a careful balance between classic simplicity and modern opulence. Busts of Greek nudes were placed throughout, and a sparkling fountain rested between two grand staircases. The room was adorned almost entirely of white and gold details, existing somewhere between the villa of an ancient god and the penthouse of a modern tycoon.
Naomi took a final sip of her tequila, setting the empty glass on the tray of a nearby waiter while taking with her a flute of champagne. She hated events like these. Stuffy men and women peered curiously at her, some showing recognition, but no one saw enough interest to approach her. They were all waiting for one person.
Looking around, she spotted the man her cousin had mentioned to her. She retrieved a cigarette from her bag, taking a few puffs before approaching him.
“Enjoying yourself?” she spoke softly, placing her lips just slightly closer to his ear than necessary. Naomi’s good graces made her charmingly disarming, her smile always pleasant and her voice always inviting. But behind her brilliant green eyes, a sharp, calculated wit glowed fiercely.
@naomi_delacour: Badass :)
There was no mistaking the dialect of a Frenchwoman's patois, nor was their mistaking her cool confidence. With the faint turn of his head, Ford's sharp, sapphire gaze set upon the duchess. "Always," his accent, torn between an Italian-Greek inflection, "and yourself?" As a kind gesture, his hand extended, palm-upwards in a formality he rarely escaped. Eyes wandered the great hall's curious as ever, they awaited a name that was lost on even Damon, perhaps it was Valerie herself, or just another great name of the Hellfire Club's Inner-Circle monarchy. As he was one of them himself, Damon couldn't think of a particular person.
Nonetheless, the White King accompanied much more interesting matters. "Correct me if I am wrong but you don't happen to be a Naomi Delacour, do you?" The tone in his question as avid as his grin, "I make it my business to know my new friends, and their's. Plus, you draw a lot of eyes" a devilish grin formed, basking in the smoke and aura only a king could delve in. "Care to join me?" His opposite arm extended towards an empty chair alike to his, to his right. His imposing figure comfortably sunk into the red velvet material, nay a crease in his violet accented grey Brioni three-piece.
He tilted his head amusingly, "oh forgive me for my manners, Damon Ford, White King."
Naomi let her hand fall delicately into his grip as she lowered her head in a mock curtsey.
“An honor, you majesty.” The whole pretense of Kings and Queens within the Hellfire Club had always struck her as a bit comical, but she recognized the affinity for formal hierarchy that ran among her Huntington relatives. In Naomi’s world, power never needed to be labeled. It was omnipotent, something a person either commanded without effort, or, would be unable to wield regardless of the titles at their disposal. She had yet to decipher which category Damon Ford fell under.
She took the seat offered to her, bringing one strappy Stuart Weitzman sandal over the other to cross her legs at the ankles.
“Please, just Naomi. Queen of no colors, I’m afraid to say. Or shapes for that matter.” She grinned playfully.
“I’ll confess, my cousin asked me here to…acquaint myself with you. Hellfire Club parties aren’t usually my first choice of venues. But family always comes first, so here I am.”
She took a sip of her champagne, the diamond tennis bracelet on her slight wrist dancing through the air as she moved. She glanced around the room, her attention resting for a moment on a tall, dark-haired man before drifting away coolly. She pushed a strand of rich espresso hair behind her ear, turning back to Damon.
“She has told me much about your home in Spain. It sounds absolutely marvelous. I would love a tour sometime, if I’m not being too presumptuous.”
A light shrug tugged his broad shoulders as his head tilted, "a Queen of no colors nor shapes is still a Queen nonetheless, no?" From the glass side-table that sat in-between the two velvet thrones, Ford grasped firmly to a glass of 'Hennessy Fine de Cognac', holding it at his side. "That's quite thoughtful of you, I usually just, show up and leave. Indulge in whatever people like us indulge in for a moment then disappear, I'm glad I didn't disappear yet," a rare smile offered, Damon took a sharp sip of the brandy that had been resting in his palm.
In a room of faces more shallow than their pockets there had been no mistaking the Delacour Duchess's true intent, whether it had been instructed or not. The wealthy stay wealthy by collaborating with those with pockets deeper than theirs, and in anyone's case - Valerie Huntington. The Hellfire Club had always been the iconic hub for fame and riches. There was no doubting it. So meeting the gaze of someone who had truly cared about neither had sparked an interest Damon Ford didn't even know he had.
Subtly, his formal etiquette had been replaced by a cool attraction. "Not at all, if you hadn't asked first I would've offered, truly." He leaned back into the velvet sea of red, taking a final sip of the brandy before setting it down empty.
The Black Rose Rockefella gracefully stepped out from the spacious back seat of the all new 2021 Rolls Ghost. Uncontrollable muscle memory instantly charged the Knightfall replicant with all the hereditary and aristocratic posture of the original Iron Mamba, Jayden Knightfall, presenting a perfect replication of the true founder of the Hellfire Club.
Betrayed by his own lineage and the elegant deception of the White Queen, Valarie Huntington. Systematically erasing any sign, any history of the original Knightfall's omnipotent reign over the club. Perverted into a Spanish themed Illuminati anchored by the self-proclaimed 'greatest Knightfall of them all' Andreas the Don Knightfall.
However, despite its vast intercontinental influence, recent years have seen the Hellfire consortium grow stagnant, irrelevant. A shadow of its former greatness. It was the perfect time for the Silent Knight to become immersed in its current cultural decline. Laxed, muted, his presence would go without interference. Just another Knightfall in a laundry list of unimportant Knightfalls roaming the blue-blooded halls of the sexually perverse and the rich untouchable degenerates who frequented the club.
Evolving the expected traditions of superficial masculinity, Sabriel had adopted a transgressive haute couture off black suit with beadwork, and a thin form fitting trench coat with metallic fabric. Premiering an unconventional tailoring with an amalgamated coherence between the aggressive and soft shaded essence of a new era of prominence.
His shoulders confidently swayed to the rhythm of the stylish music as he approached the bar. One Old Fashion later, his back pressed against the edge of the bar allowing for an undisturbed survey of the scene. No Kings or Rooks. Queens or Pawns. Just those in search of something unattainable. Free of society's watchful eye as the cancel culture cults continued to comb through Twitter, TMZ, and any other source they could think of in order to unapologetically erase those they deemed unfit to hold their current celebrity status.
But here, inside the sacred and heavily guarded halls of the Hellfire Club, every and anybody was free to explore well beyond the natural sexual conventions of society. The Muted Mamba was here for something else however. His body language read as a relaxed patron. His eyes however. The Silent Knight's eyes secretly focused on a plethora of micro-interactions. Movements. Tells and routines. Storing it all in a collective and comprehensive mental catalog.
Phase one of his mission was underway. Soon the Sin of Suicidal Shinobi's would execute his plan and begin the storied rebirth of the true Arashikage.
@last_arashikage: The Hellfire Club, was something vast and quite exclusive yet worlds away it could pluck someone from the darkness and they would never be heard of again. Even in her days of clandestine operations, she had heard of them. And now they seemed to be allowing everything to crumble. Reading for nights about the latest trivial and disastrous comings and goings within its walls. Standing across the street at the latest shindig it was having, she caught a glimpse of HIM. His body spoke volumes, and she was glad she never was blessed with the ability to read minds because he would have been a deep and dark pit of hate....but she could not help enjoying looking at him.
By the time Sabriel had started on his 4th drink he had accumulated a small sexually charged entourage. He flirtatiously played along. Careful as to not accidently seduce one of the many and eager chavs circling his angular laid back position.
Yet his thoughts continued to drift back to his arrival, and the caramel complected bystander who was stealthily lingering across the street. Her body language spoke of intrigue, surveillance. But of who? Of what?
@last_arashikage: Nerves and the understanding that things often go awry lately kept Fortune away for half an hour, but quickly the nerves died down and she was able to think logically. She knew it was a magnetism that brought her here, and it was him the scent as many would say that led her to the front steps of this lavish and seemingly cultured club. Stepping into the bar-room she found the noise of everyone talking all at once almost overwhelming. Years in silence or in stealth mode had been her life, now away from that world she had to adjust. The bartender asking what her poison was she smiled, flirting with him "White Russian please.." her soft voice almost inaudible within the chaos. Her nerves returned as she tapped at the underside of the bar, her finger hardening and scrapping small grooves as she tapped.
@fortune_lasada: (its kinda hard trying to keep it short. I f's wit it)
The energy shifted. Subtly, but shifted none the less. Years of inhuman training at the hands of the Order of Sancta Camisia had honed Sabriel's senses. Not an empath, he was only human after all. And yet, as the brown beauty approached the bar he could clearly feel the awkward vibe radiating off her body.
She was a new variable and the Silent Knight quickly realized she would have to be taken into account if he were to execute his plan without any colleterial damage. With a suave nod he alerted the bartender. "Thats on me."he proclaimed as he took control of the freshly poured beverage. "Careful with this. They mix em strong an deadly" he joked as he handed the unknown cutie her drink. "Sabriel." he announced. Extending his hand
@last_arashikage: You're telling me
His voice was smooth and alluring, breathing in deep she turned to him and smiled just slightly. Any other moment the brash and smug look on his face would have been treated with a quick reply from her boot. But she thought to herself "By god is he not good looking....think with your head Tunes...HEAD" taking her to drink from him she replied "You find yourself getting used to anything if its tried enough...Nothing like a middle of the desert mixed drink." slamming the drink back quickly she chuckled to herself "Lets hope this does not have sand this time..." she relaxed as the alcohol hit hard and quick. Courage in a glass, she enjoyed it far too often lately. "Fortune..my name is Fortune. Nice to meet you Sabriel. You left your entourage back there at the table, and they are staring daggers." Fortune won't lie, she really is enjoying the jealous stares. A quick toss of a fork or a knife and they would not be smiling their snobby smiles.
She had his attention and with unwavering focus he listened, chuckled, and socially engaged with Fortune. She had no doubt endured some form of trauma. Physical, psychological, both? But it had hardened her resolve. The added boast of alcohol helped, but beyond that Sabriel could read her hidden fortitude. "Yeah, well, thats all part of the fun isnt?" playing the role of a self-absorbed socialite, he helped in the subtle mocking of his discarded entourage.
"The Hellfire Club is full of clingons, leeches and golddiggers. But you. You dont seem like a regular. What brings you here, Fortune. Looking to join the Inner Circle?"he name dropped the prestigious and secret myth-like faction within the HFC. Showcasing his well of knowledge as it pertained to the group.
@last_arashikage: A twinge of anger and resentment washed over Fortune's face, just for a brief moment but even a blind man could have seen it. She composed herself and with a fake smile "I do not fit in with the crowd that would be within the Inner Circle, met enough of those types. Done enough for them as well. I don't need it in my life." trailing off she tried changing the subject and tapped the tabletop for another drink, quickly it was slid to her, in an almost angered fashion. Fortune thought to herself "Am I seeing things....Am I reading too much into that....I want to hit him so god damn hard.."this time she could not hold it in, her arm transforming into her hardened state she scratched grooves into the table holding her rage in check...or at least trying.
Her agitated emotional portrayal was evidence of a quick temper and defensive nature yet the replicated Knightfall patriarch remained stoically relaxed. "So, Fortune. What do you need in your life?" Sabriel verbally pushed. Trying to persuade the sun dipped daughter of danger into revealing some form of useful insight into her appearance here, on this night of all nights.
An arched brow and slight chuckle preceded the Silent Knight's next inquiry. Staring at the transformed state of her appendage with inquisitive observation, he questioned the lovely yet angered stranger.
"Neat trick. Mutant? Meta? Both?"
New York City, Upper East Side
Oxford's clashing against the vanity of glass and glamor, "Prince" Han Toynon strode through the raging nightclub. Weaving through the like a snake in the grass. His eyes coiling each face he passed, psychoanalyzing their behaviors, habits, and physical differences. Scanning the crowd without moving a single muscle. Until, he came to a stop. Hands settled idly in each pocket of his dim brown Giorgio Armani two-piece, pitch-black turtleneck sitting under. His eyes, dark and empty, glaring upon the VIP section that watched over the rest of the club. A smirk met his lips.
Han carried on. Hands proceeding their position and eyes the same. First, a hand opposed his path.
"Aye, little man,"a large palm faced him, it attached to a 6'3" security personnel. Han, his eyes calm and easy, "Please don't get worked up, I am here to s-" X "I do not care."
, a hypnotizing voice came from the VIP section, a tall, handsome foreigner stood with a grin and a wave.
"Damon Ford," Han returned with a formal head-nod, passing by the bodyguard without a second look.
The two shared a hand-shake, continuing further into the Member's Only section of the club, Han following the White King into a private room where the two only shared the air. The room consisting of sound-proof walls and velvet furniture. The two childhood friends exchanging small-talk, the Spaniard and German settling into two comfortable armchairs. "So... the White King of the Hellfire Club, huh?" Han crossed his legs, doing the same with his firm hands. Damon, his honorable demeanor wavering before the presence of a lifelong friend.
"I guess so." He shrugged his shoulders, flustered. "Tis surprising Valerie was brave enough to carry on her burden to me." Han, grinning and sitting back with a soft gaze, "I believe she made the right decision."
"After all, how else would I become the White King without slaving away at my master's feet?"
Abruptly prying himself away from a glass of coffee as Han did, Ford's eyes met the sight of a modified Desert Eagle, "I appreciate your hard work." Finger slamming the trigger, Ford's forehead met a new avenue. An open tunnel traveling from the front of his forehead to the back of his skull. The sound-proof room Ford led him to, the Desert Eagle Han modified, and Damon Ford's entire Hellfire career - all led to this very moment. A new uprising.
Han Toynon, from mastermind to king.
Standing, holstering his firearm with a grin, Han quirked his head to the sight of his dead friend, "thank you for playing along with my game."
He opened the door, the only entrance and exit of the surveillance lacking room, "I appreciate your utter inadequacy."
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