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Mesdames et Messieurs

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Briselle, Fleuria, Delamaria.


August, 2011.

The sun filled evening sky over Briselle was an attraction in of itself, the imperial Lysian architecture untouched for over a hundred years. Families have dinner in streets cafés and restaurants, with all of the taste and charm of the old wurld. The city was adamantly against changing the aesthetics of the town, as the nation itself was changing faster than before, they wanted to keep what little they had left. 

The Montgisard Hotel was an institution in the city. For decades the rich and famous would mingle and drink cocktails on the patio, rubbing shoulders with politicians and royalty. Now it was a fairly isolated place, from which the powerful would gather every once in a while, similarly to an island in which none would leave. Though nobody was aware of what was truly taking place at the Montgisard Hotel.

A lone butler, in a long tailored coat emerges, “Mesdames et Messieurs, welcome to the Montgisard Hotel, the 3rd and 4th floors are available for your usage”. A crowd of wealthy and powerful people, not only from Delamaria but across the globe, enter the hall and a few select people go to the library. Among them are members of the Big six, lawmakers, executives, bankers, brokers, and a woman running for Senate in Crownsland, Deborah Van Roose. 

“Welcome to the hotel Mrs Van Roose, how is your campaign going?” Says a tall woman in a long black dress, holding a notebook, to which she writes in every few minutes. “It’s going well, but I think it could be going better” Van Roose replies, this wasn’t the first time she had been to one of these events, though the event itself was a secret she couldn’t help but feel that her attendance was a risk, and with so many attendees it was a miracle it had remained outside of public knowledge. “There is an item for auction tonight, I think you will find it most interesting. But until then, relax, you must know some of these people from the hummingbird foundation.” The woman said.

”Yes, well this isn’t my first time, we were all born into this” she replies, not knowing whether she should laugh. “That we were, and there is no way out.” The woman says before walking to another guest, leaving Van Roose confused yet intrigued. A few minutes later, after sharing cocktails with Oil executives and foreign spies, the auction began. A grand, ornate hall, with amber walls and golden crowning, with chairs arranged in a half circle, each seat costing thousands themselves. 

Van Roose took her seat, she attended alone, which she would now feel was wrong as she sees every person sat surrounded by a small team advising them. The auctioneer took to the podium, “Ladies and gentlemen our auction will now begin, each product that will be sold tonight shall be presented in the form vague description, though it will be implied of its use. Now let us begin”. Deborah knew that if she were to hear something of interest she would have to wait for a large part of the evening. So she signalled a waiter, and ordered some fine Lysian Columbian champagne.

”The personal secrets of a Delamarian military contract reviewer, do I hear 2.6?”. At this point the calm sound of the auctioneer’s voice was boring Van Roose, as she waited for something of interest she felt a tap on her shoulder. “Mrs Van Roose, Ms Dargolis will see you now.”, Van Roose was surprised but she was open to anything at this point.

As she walked to the mysterious Ms Dargolis’s office, she saw guards detaining one of the attendees, who was angry at losing one of the items to a rival. “Ah Mrs Van Roose! So nice to have you here please sit down.” Dargolis says, she has a distinct accent, though it would be impossible to pinpoint. “May I ask what this meeting is about? I was told there was an item for auction tonight I would be interested in, and I would hate to miss it”. Van Roose says, pretending to feel rather calm though she is anxious at the meeting, and Dargolis knew it. “Don’t worry about the item, I’ve taken it off the roster for tonight.” Dargolis replies. “Oh, Will I not be able to buy it? Money is of no object.” Van Roose says, as her confusion grows. “You will not need to open your check book tonight Mrs Van Roose. We have a proposal”. At this point both women were anxious to hear from each other, as, unbeknownst to them, their future careers depended on it. “What is this proposal?” Van Roose asks, with a sudden boost of confidence, as she can sense that this is something that Dargolis needs. “We will give you the information necessary to win your election, hell we’ll rig it if it comes to it.” Dargolis chuckles to herself, and drinks from her glass. “What’s the catch? I came here with a barrow of gold, and you’re going to just give it to me?” Van Roose says, with a slightly concerned tone. “You are a clever woman Mrs Van Roose, come with me.” Dargolis stands and walks to her balcony, overlooking the river, Van Roose waits a moment and then follows her.

”Deborah, the people I work for need you.” Dargolis says, overlooking her view. “Me?” Van Roose asks with surprise. ”Yes you, Mrs Van Roose, we have been searching for someone like you for a very long time, and here you are.” Dargolis says with a smile. “In return for our... services, we would like you to become a member of the hummingbird foundation, and an open line of communication between us and your soon to be office”. Van Roose waits in silence for a few moments, before she replies. “Who is we, who are you representing here?” Van Roose asks. “All will be revealed in good time, take a day to think it over, we can be very helpful”.

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  • 2 months later...

Later that night.

Van Roose walked the large grand hallways of the Hotel, surrounded by the rich and powerful, people that she grew up so close to, but had never felt so distant from. Alone and contemplating the proposal which had been brought before her. She took her phone and called her Husband.

”Come on Andrew, pick up.” She said to herself, whilst still trying to remain calm. 
“Hi Deb, I’m a little busy at the moment, what do you want?” Andrew said.

”Oh good, I just had to talk to you, I’m at the auction, and I got an offer and I’m not sure if I should take it.” Van Roose said in a somber tone.

”Well what was the offer?” Andrew asked.

”I can’t tell you right now, but I think if I wait too long I’ll lose it. It’s a once in a lifetime thing.” She replied.

”Do you want to go hand gliding again? Because I’m not doing it you know I’m afraid of heights-“ Andrew said jokingly.

”No no, it’s bigger than that, much much bigger.” Van Roose said.

”Well if you think it’s in your best interest, then go for it, you don’t need me to tell you what to do Madam Senator Elect”

Andrew Replied.

As Andrew spoke Van Roose noticed a blue and red hue in the distance. Behind her people immediately began panicking, drinks fell to the floor, papers were blown into the air.

”Andrew I’m going to have to- I’m going to have to call you back” Van Roose said with a concerned tone.

Van Roose joined the crowd in running through hallways, desperate to leave. 
“Everyone needs to be calm” A voice shouted. “We have evac in the underground garage, follow the guards.”

Suddenly the doors opened, and the hundreds of guests filed down the stairs and into the dark garage, in which cars had been waiting. Some tried to leave in their own cars, but soon they hit one another, and a gridlock formed leaving some stranded. As Van Roose looked behind her, the gilded corridors of the hotel were littered with documents and broken glass. A few staff remained to destroy any evidence of their activities, and silence any witnesses.

As the cars departed the building, they sped along a tunnel lying parallel to sea, Van Roose finally felt relieved, and could think about what was to come as she looked upon the ocean she thought, “Yes, This is what I will do.”

Back at the hotel swarms of Police and InBe surrounded the building, helicopters hovered above the cobbled streets, and press crews began setting up outside the perimeter. A lone figure wearing all black came out of an InBe car.

”They we’re here” He Said. “We can’t lose them again”. 

Inside the hotel was pandemonium, guests, bystanders, and staff began panicking as the police began sealing the exits. “Ladies and Gentlemen” The man says. “I am Sector Chief Jason Green, We have reason to believe that a criminal organisation met at this location today. Everyone must remain on the ground floor to be interviewed by me and my colleagues. To staff, remain here too, do not clean or move anything without the approval of my team. Thank you”. Immediately people begin talking amongst themselves, having seen some famous faces in hotel, who have disappeared. One man picks up a half full glass of champagne and goes to drink it. “Ah” says Green, as he takes away the glass with his rubber gloves. “You wouldn’t want to be wrongly convicted from your dna samples now would you?” Green says. 

He was one of the best investigators to ever grace the Investigation Bureau, top of his class at Marlborough, the youngest to ever hold the position of Section Chief, and determined to take down the organisation he knew so little about, yet hated so much.

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Investigation Bureau Section Office, Briselle.

One day after the Montgisard Hotel incident.

The Section office was a stark modern building, that struggled to fit in with the colonial architecture of the city. Outside was a cluttering of news crews from around the country, all waiting for the chief to speak out. Chief Green was a young, tall man, in his early to mid thirties. He had short hair, and a tendency to wear long and dark clothing. He was a well educated man, with a good pedigree, though he rarely showed it. Though it was yet unclear why he was so determined to take down what he knew so little about,  he was not going to stop until he had finished what he had started.

As the journalists and TV crews harassed everyone who even vaguely resembled an InBe spokesman, Green stepped out. “All of your questions will be answered shortly” he said in a tired yet commanding tone, “But I will now read this statement, at 7:24 PM yesterday, the Briselle Post received a call from a guest at the Montgisard Hotel, though I cannot tell you exactly what was said on the call yet, the caller described the activities taking place at the hotel, which matched an ongoing investigation. After the call ended we were contacted and immediately went to the Hotel. When we arrived there was little trace of what had taken place, the rooms were abandoned and little was left behind. However we were able to apprehend those who had yet to leave, and we currently have them in custody. If you know any information of what was taking place in the hotel please contact your nearest Investigation Bureau office. I will now turn you over to my colleague to answer any remaining questions”. 

As Green walked away, and the press overwhelmed the poor spokesman Green had left to answer questions, he received a phone call from a number he didn’t recognise. He let it ring for a moment as he entered the building again, as to keep away from the prying eyes of the press. “You’re quite the public speaker Mr.Green” said the voice on the phone. “Who is this?” Green asked concerningly. “My identity will reveal itself soon enough” said the man. “How did you get this number?” Green asked. “Be at Ramsett park at 11 o’clock on Saturday, there’s a bench that overlooks the lake, don’t be late.” And without hesitation the call ended. Green was confused, concerned and excited. Though this could very much be a trap he couldn’t pass up the opportunity to learn more about something he’d been investigating for little more than two years now.

Van Roose Residence,

Eastminster, Crownsland.

As Van Roose’s car pulled up to her old brick country home, her husband walked out the door, holding her oldest child. “Welcome back, how was Briselle?” Andrew asked. “I need to talk to you, alone” Van Roose replied. “Ok, well I’ll put the kids to bed, you go make yourself ready and I’ll get some wine from the cellar”. Van Roose was exhausted, a full day of travelling, with meetings along the way. Though as she sat down she was still thinking about what she had been offered. She didn’t know all of the details but she understood what she would be undertaking. 

“So what’s up?” Andrew asked, wine bottle in hand. “I met someone in Briselle, and she made me an offer.” Van Roose said. “Well what’s so concerning about that?” Andrew asked. “They could make things quite easy for me, career wise, and all I would have to do is do them a few favours.” Van Roose replied. “Well what could be so bad about that? You’re a senator now, the only way up from here is Pritchett House, and you know how much Monroe likes you.” Andrew said. “Andy you know what could happen, yeah sure I could be Secretary of something or other, maybe Vice President at a push, but it’s corruption, they probably wouldn’t prosecute but you know what they do to the corrupt, they get bricks through the window, spit in their food, and think about the kids.” Van Roose said in an almost frightened tone. 

“Deborah, we can handle that, and it’s good for you, really good, and in the off chance something goes wrong we’ll be fine” Andrew said comfortingly. “Thanks Andy, let’s do it then, I don’t know why I was so worried.” Van Roose replied. Van Roose then went to her bag and found a small white card and picked up her phone. “Dargolis?” Van Roose said,

“I’m in”.

Edited by Delamaria (see edit history)
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1 Year Later

Highgrove House, Cape Hope, Providence.

Highgrove House was one of the most prestigious sort. The ancestral home of the Carlisle Family, its opulence was once the talk of the town. It’s guests were among wurld leaders, and billionaires, artists and socialites. In recent years however it had become alike a fortress, the headquarters of the Hummingbird Foundation, it was too familiar with burglars, trespassers and investigative journalists. Within the estate was a grand room, where a small crowd of people stood observing a man put a pin on Van Roose’s blazer.

”And with that, it is my pleasure to welcome you to our organisation, it’s been a long road from your initiation, but you are now one of us!” The man said proudly. ”Thank you Governor.” Van Roose Said. “It is an honour for you to welcome me into this society, and I look forward getting more involved.” The crowd begins clapping as the next initiate steps up to the Governor. “How do you feel?” Dargolis asked. “Great it’s good to finally be here.” Van Roose replied. “Good, lets go and get you set up.” Said Dargolis.

The pair then walked out of the room and into a stark modern underground passage, which contrasted harshly with the ornate building it led out of. “Here we are.” Dargolis said as she opened the door for Van Roose. As both of them entered the room and sat down a group of three other new members too arrived. A man then entered from the back of the room, a fairly average looking man, in his late 50s, wearing a blue suit and a Hummingbird pin. “Ah you’re all here” The man said. “My name is John Orton and I am your Senop.” The group looked confused but remained eager. “Senop?” Van Roose asked. “Senior Operative” Dargolis replied. “Thank you Ms. Dargolis, do you want to rejoin the party? I believe you’re wanted.” Orton replied. “Oh, I best be off then. I’ll see you later.” Dargolis said as she left. 

“Now where was I? Oh yes, I am your Senior Operative, which basically means that I will be the line of communication between you four and the main organisation. Any operations, ideas or information will go through me first. Is that clear?” Orton said. The four nodded. “Good, now let us introduce ourselves, Senator Van Roose needs no introduction, quite the star at the party convention weren’t we.” He said with a grin. “Ok well I’m Joseph Durban, I am a Senior Partner at HJW Lobbying.” One person said. “Hi, I’m Julia DuKakis, I am the Deputy Under Secretary for Foreign Missions at DoFA.” Said another. “And I am Bill Amherst, Ian’s I’m  the new CFO at DP”. 

“Well that wasn’t so hard.” Orton said. “Come on, I’ll take you downstairs”. Orton stands and walks through the door at the back. The four looked at each other for a second and followed suit. They walked down a short stair case into a large busy room, with screens and maps lining the walls. “This is the heart of Highgrove, every piece of information passes through this very room. From here you could do almost anything, but we tend to refrain from doing so as not to draw too much attention. Right let’s get you set up.”

Investigation Bureau Building, Labrador.

In large room with blacked out windows, Green sat before a panel of Senior InBe officials. ”Mr Green it has come to this board’s attention that you have been diverting funds from the entire Northern Division to fund your personal project, jeprodisring several ongoing operations Is this true?” The Chair said. “Yes Sir.” Green replied. “And you are aware that we must act on these actions of yours?” He asked again. “Yes Sir.” Green replied again. “Mr Green, we have no option but to demote you back to your original post in the Briselle Local Office, and a short suspension. You’re reckless spending practises have done real harm to the bureau, and though you are a good agent, we cannot overlook this transgression.” Green was agitated. He had spent months investigating the Montgisard Hotel, and the organisation that was behind it. But every lead had a dead end. Heart Attacks, Car accidents, suicides, everyone who could prove what he believed to be true were falling before him, and though he was firmly loyal to the bureau, he couldn’t help but feel that it too had been long infiltrated. 

As the meeting concluded he left the room angrier than ever. How was he going to expose the organisation conspiring against them? Now that he had lost what he had worked years to gain, he was powerless and they knew it. The Chair of the panel walked into the hallway, looked around to ensure that he was alone, and pulled out his phone. “It’s done Governor” He said, “Green’s suspended and we’ve taken away his command”. “Good” the Governor replied.

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