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Jan 14 2018, 03:16 PM
When Charlie first acquired this property, she hadn’t made plans to actually use it. This fourth floor walkup in Brooklyn was her safehouse, the place to go and lay low when things when sharply south, in a neighborhood few people would think to go looking. It was a place where she could blend in with the language and culture, seeing as she’d grown up in the midst of similar Hasidic communities back home in Israel. Now, as her life required a hard reset and some serious time for introspection in order to regroup, it was the ideal place for her to be.

Well, nearly ideal.

Given the life Charlie lived before this sabbatical, she had plenty of reason to assume she was being pursued. Unfortunately, she couldn’t guarantee it was just one solitary party after her hide, so naturally precautions must be taken in order for her to sleep peacefully at night. These precautions came in the form of a small arsenal of surveillance and security equipment. Deadbolts, door jamb reinforcers, cameras, integrated security software, the whole nine yards. And seeing as waiting for peace of mind wasn’t something people with Charlie’s recently acquired assets tended to do well, she’d opted to splurge for ‘ultra-express shipping’. Guaranteeing these items in 45 minutes or less was something Charlie couldn’t logistically see happening in a place as sprawling and chaotic as New York, but she was more than prepared to be amazed should it actually work out.

Sipping from a large mug of herbal tea, Charlie’s brow furrowed at the sound of her door buzzer a mere thirty minutes after she’d sent it. The buzzing pattern requested on the order was correct, but sharply staccato and much quicker than she’d heard it entered before. Charlie wrote it off to an issue in the intercom’s wiring, the unit not quite up to date with this decade or the last. Even so, she couldn’t imagine it was the courier service this soon, but was proven wrong as a man’s voice soon crackled over the intercom with the particulars of her order just as they’d been specified in her request. The paranoid bits of her brain screamed ‘trap!’ while the other parts were perplexed as to how this feat was humanly possible. Humanly being the key word there… In the event that this particular character wasn’t Pro-Chuck, she put down her mug and grabbed her pistol from the bedside table. She wedged it in the waistline at the front of her jeans and pulled the oversized knit sweater she was wearing over it, easily concealing the gunmetal.

Usually a perfectly put together visage, Charlie's lack of sleep and inability to drink or deny her problems away at this juncture in her life had the woman wearing worry on her brow. Her eyes were dark with fatigue, expression drawn and subdued in comparison to the sly, confident smirk she typically wore. With a long push of the intercom’s button, the front door buzzed open, allowing the courier’s entry before locking behind him. In the span of the seconds it took for Charlie to reach for the door handle in order to see what was coming from down the hall, there was a knock on the other side. She pulled her right hand back, her left hand instinctively lifting the hem of her sweater to allow the right to rest on the grip of her pistol. Rising up onto the balls of her feet, Charlie peered through the viewer to see the image of a backpack clad, white haired man waiting on the other side. Whoever this guy was, she reckoned he was either a teleporter or a speedster, and she had little advantage against either when it came down to getting out of trouble. For the first time since Genosha, Charlie turned up the production of her pheromones, high concentrations of the chemical compounds evaporating from the surface of her caramel brown skin.

“Ultra-Express Shipping?” She lobbed through the door, her tone playful for now as she tugged at the neck of her sweater to release the building concentrations of pheromones trapped underneath it. Charlie’s lithe form slowly and silently turned away from the door, pressing her shoulders and back to the plaster wall beside the threshold instead. “The pin, please,” she requested succinctly and politely, hoping that the answer would come soon enough and she wouldn’t have to go through this song and dance much longer. Cameras and reinforcements should rectify this inconvenience of not knowing if a threat lurked down the hallway, given that’s what was actually in the guy’s bag.

And luckily for Charlie, he rattled off the six digits flawlessly and without pause. It seemed after all that this was the actual courier, not some punctual assassin. Releasing the grip on the handle of her pistol, she moved her sweater back over the weapon, stepped away from the wall, and took a much needed deep breath. This whole paranoid, everyone’s out to get me thing was really starting to kick her ass. Her trigger happy right hand reached for the door handle once more, pulling it open to see a bag-toting Quicksilver in all his platinum haired glory. The man was quite a departure from the common courier in more ways than one, and Charlie’s growing curiosity was at odds with her better judgement for the time being. What was a mutant like that doing delivering packages?

“That was fast. Please, come in. You can unpack the order on the countertop,” she instructed, motioning to the small kitchen area’s counter space just a few paces from the front door. The countertop doubled as a small bar with a pair of stools, which Charlie quickly moved aside to allow the courier to unload the various home security components. She’d need to verify the order was as it should be before signing the verification and sending the guy on his way. And, of course, have him answer a series of questions regarding precisely who and what he was.

Without any proper ventilation system, the apartment reeked of Chuck’s pheromones already, their herbaceous and honey-sweet scents mixing with her fresh release of potent pheromones. Ensuring there was no funny business through the use of her chemical insurance policy was Chuck’s best bet at navigating this uncertain situation with peace of mind. And given that the guy should be in and out in the span of a few short minutes, he’d be no worse for wear after stepping into Charlie’s home. This was the new Charlie, after all, the one who didn’t take advantage of those ensnared by her mutation’s traps. Pietro Maximoff had nothing to worry about.
Jan 13 2018, 12:55 PM
In the last few weeks, the only times Charlie ventured outside of her modest Brooklyn apartment she was nearly fully clad in her suit. The marvelously designed garments gifted to her by former teammates were essential to blending in and leaving others unaffected. This was easy to do when living in a small Hasidic community in Brooklyn where covering up was all the rage. But today she would have to forgo modesty and reliable containment of her mutation’s effects in order to fit in back in Manhattan. Charlie hadn’t been back to the borough in nearly a week, her usual stomping grounds not holding within them their usual charm and comfort these days.

In a departure from her typically dark clothing color choice, Charlie was clad in all white, a nod to the warming relationship between herself and the woman with whom she’d be meeting today. Shrugging off her coat, Charlie made her way through the front door and into to the reception of Frost International. The warming weather provided the luxury of Charlie showing skin in her white dress, and along with it the scars of her service dotting her back and shoulders like constellations. A record of close calls and near misses. The swish of a few strides had her to the reception, stopping a bit further than might be expected before speaking.

“Good morning,” she greeted the perfectly put together, Bluetooth headset rocking blonde who was busily clicking away at the keyboard. Before the girl drew her eyes away from the computer screen with which she was so deeply engrossed, Charlie voiced her business. “Charlie Page. I have a 10:30 with Ms. Frost,” she offered, rolling her shoulder to hike the slipping strap of the briefcase up a bit more. A quick glance at her watch had the time at 10:23, a smidge earlier than she’d anticipated. Waiting wasn’t something Charlie really did before this whole turning of new leaves thing, but for once it wasn’t her powers of persuasion that got her access. It was her connection to the brains that built this entire enterprise, Emma Frost. She still wasn’t entirely sure what Emma had planned for her here, but whatever it was there was a solid chance it was a step in the right direction.

Regardless of the sass Emma had consistently cast Chuck’s way, she trusted the woman and knew her to be a brilliant strategist. Though she wouldn't admit it to herself yet, Charlie actually had the sneaking suspicion that Emma wanted what was best of her. If there was one person’s advice that she’d be looking to ask for, it was Frost's. And if their previous interactions were any indication of the norm, Emma was going to have plenty of things to say.
Jan 10 2018, 10:58 PM
Turning over a new leaf, namely her complete cessation of felonious activities, left Charlie with far more free time than she was accustomed to. All that boring was enough to make her skin crawl, but she tried to embrace it, seeing as laying low would more than likely be her best bet. These were trying times, and Chuck had been on the offensive of multiple bouts between mutants and some unsavory humans that worked to paint a big red target on her back. She was, on her own admission, “part of the problem”. Careless in her use of manipulation, taking as she pleased and seldom saying “Thank You”. An unfortunate series of events and some spicy truth bombs had led Charlie to the resolution that, if she wanted to find any contentment in her life, things had to change.

That led her to Trader Joe’s to pick up the week’s groceries, one of the woman’s few outings nowadays. Dressed casually in jeans and an oversized ‘Purple Rain’ sweater, all but Charlie’s neck and head were covered by the suit specially designed by her comrades in the Brotherhood to keep her pheromones contained. Without the mask to completely seal the sweetly scented chemical compounds in there was still some risk of exposure. But the brunette didn’t plan on being in the store long, or conversing with a soul in that place long enough to pose much risk. Picking her way through the produce, periodically scoffing at both the price and quality of what passed as fresh food in this country, Charlie’s paranoia addled brain couldn’t help but notice she had attracted some unwanted attention.

She’d been trained to notice when things weren’t quite right. Like the kid who wasn’t anywhere near old enough to be out of school walking around without a parent, stealing glances at the bag around her arm as she moved through the grocery store. The way he moved with her natural progression across the floor to casually intercept her indicated the kid knew what he was doing.

This wasn’t Alex Goya’s first rodeo.
Dec 13 2017, 10:03 PM
An unassuming black GMC SUV was warmed and waiting on the tarmac for the unlikely group of mutants that had recently touched down in a small private jet. The slightly warmer air of the more temperate D.C. climate that greeted them was undoubtedly welcomed but hardly at the forefront of Charlie’s mind. There were far more pressing matters presently, and her focus was acutely tuned to what was coming next. Slipping into the driver’s seat, Charlie waited for the rest of the team she’d assembled to pile in before putting the car in drive and heading toward their destination: A less than modest brownstone in a particularly affluent neighborhood. The type of area that boasts of its dearth in crime, but on this evening had something else in store.

The intel, plan, and variables were all laid out neatly for Senyaka, Spark, and Emma Frost on the brief midnight flight from New York. Charlie had gone over it countless times in her head in the weeks prior, and by this very evening had it whittled down to the ideal presentation of points one could ask for and hardly a peep more. Her goal was to get in, get the intel, eliminate the target, and get out. The less superfluous details that was factored into the briefing, the less there would be to distract from those relatively simple goals. What would be critical to the success of this mission was stealth and discretion, but given the circumstances Charlie could only hope for the best. She didn’t doubt Emma would keep her cool, it was the other two that she was worried about. Suvik’s display at the inauguration was indication to Charlie enough that he could be a liability, but in truth she was thankful that he was around. He was a powerful ally and a means of focus and solace for Anna, Charlie’s greatest concern.

Given what had happened to her dear brother, Charlie saw it only fitting that Anna was offered the opportunity to avenge his untimely departure herself. Whether or not she’d be able to keep her cool and resist frying Goliath alive before Emma was able to pull his secrets from his psyche was another story. Charlie had decided early on to leave eliminating the security detail to Senyaka and Spark in hopes that they might get any murderous impulses out of their systems early. A blacked out sprinter van parked a few doors down from the Page residence housed a surveillance array and its operator, as well as two armed guards. The ex-marines were trading ninety minute naps throughout the wee hours of their night shift, one dozing peacefully, the other oscillating between the camera feeds and his iPhone. Charlie didn’t doubt that they’d make easy work of the trio and rejoin them to sweep the house or any remaining threats before providing Goliath with an early wake-up call.

The Israeli’s brown eyes methodically flicked from the road in front of her to her rear view mirror, careful to take note of any vehicles that lingered a little long for comfort on her way to the Brownstone. “ETA is three minutes,” she informed as she flicked on her directional and swung a left turn into the neighborhood. Charlie was doing everything she could to stay clear, calm, and level headed. There was a lot riding on tonight, and nearly everyone in the car had some deep personal investment in the target. With the deck stacked as it was and powerful emotions hanging delicately in the balance, there was plenty of room for things to go awry. These moments of meditation before it all really began were there for Charlie to steady her mind, sharpen her intent, and keep the free-radicals of emotional impulses at bay. Her breathing was deep and slow, coaxing her nervous system into balance as she drove the path studied meticulously days before.

“Here we go,” she breathed, pulling close to the curb just around the block from their destination and slipping the car into park. Reaching to the earpiece wrapped around her left auricle, Charlie pinged Elle back in the Pit, “Okay, Hardwire. Lights out.” In a brief moment’s expanse the power in a three block radius blinked out, streetlights and porch lights flickering away to bathe the streets in inky darkness. Charlie slipped her mask over her tightly braided hair and pushed the car door open, making her way to the nearly deserted sidewalk in a few determined paces. The matte black material of her suit made her nearly disappeared in the shroud of darkness created by the blackout, sharp in contrast to the woman dressed in white joining her in step. Giving Suvik and Anna a nod, Charlie set off on what very well might have been the most arduous mission of her career thus far. Not for its complexity, or insurmountable odds, but for the fact that tonight she was haunting darkened D.C. streets to eliminate her own father. The man who had hardly graced her life but brought so much pain to countless others.

Seeing as the security detail had its hands full for the time being and the vast majority of the neighborhood had been fast asleep for hours already, Charlie made her way toward the front stoop of the Brownstone. ::Once we gain entry we’ll need to link Elle into the home security system to disable it entirely,:: she reminded Emma, assuming the blackout wouldn’t deter a security system meant to protect such an important man. The flash drive that her fiery teammate had provided would certainly do the trick, assuming the pair could find the terminal in time. Not a stranger to picking locks, Charlie knelt down and examined the mechanism with a keen eye before reaching for her tools to get to work on cracking it. Getting in was always easy. It was getting back out that things tended to go wrong.
Dec 11 2017, 07:43 AM
The harsh bite of crisp winter air was held at bay by the varied layers of Charlie’s specialized suit as she pushed open the door. Any gusts that threatened to seep underneath her collar were held at bay by a large knit scarf wrapped doubly around her neck, her brown tresses kept from billowing by an IDF emblazoned beanie. Station M’s large expanse of roof, riddled with rusty ladders and precariously placed nooks, was one of Charlie’s favorite places to find solace and peace. The view of the city down the Hudson to Manhattan was breathtaking, and the privacy was unmatched outside of the confines of her room. This time of year, at least.

Sliding the brick used to keep the door propped open into the doorway, Charlie stepped out and dug for the slim silver cigarette case in her pocket. Her last week or so was fraught with sunset and evening meditations atop the Brotherhood’s hideout like some chain-smoking, brooding gargoyle. The woman’s means of processing the many splendored ways her life had gone to shit recently meant long hours of consideration on what to do next. And after many miles paced and meticulous details considered, she only had a little over a day before everything came to action. Bringing an expertly rolled cigarette of her particularly preferred blend of Israeli tobacco to her lips, Charlie fruitfully fought the wind to eventually light the end. Her long drag of the potent combustible was released with a deep sigh, a billow of smoke, condensation, and pheromones escaping her lips.

These were the pre-mission jitters that she typically lived for, but the knowing of what was to come had her insides all twisted up instead. Given what had transpired in the last few weeks, there was no more time to waste. Regardless of how killing Goliath would affect her, it needed to be done. For the safety of mutant-kind, for Calvin and Clarice, for Alexei. And tomorrow night, it would be.

Ascending the ladder that led up to her favorite crows nest, Charlie sat herself in view of the vibrant sunset casting its glow over the concrete jungle to the south. Honey brown eyes didn’t focus on anything in particular, her mind still smoothing over the hard corners and angles of her plan. She’d run it dozens of times in her head, every variation, the vast myriad of possibilities, but Charlie had been through this song and dance enough times to know that until you were there, you couldn’t really know. It was the not knowing that was eating her up. Most specifically, the not knowing how she might feel or what was next when the deed was finally done.

Hardwire
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