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Thevshi

The Midnight Society (take two)

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Megan Howell looked out the window at the passing lights of the buildings of downtown Freedom City. Over the last few months she had not been back home very much, at least as Megan Howell. She had begun her first year at Yale University back in the Fall, and though studying was a snap for her (thanks to superspeed reading), she still had taken full advantage of the socializing that was part of dorm life. She had not even come home over the winter break, heading off to the French Alps with her family for the holidays instead.

There where a lot of things she missed about Freedom City, not the least of which was being Velocity. There had been a few times the Freedom League had needed her, but other than a few solo outings in New York city, she had probably spent less time as her alter ego than any other similar stretch of time since she gained her powers years ago.

As her father turned on the 52nd Avenue, Megan looked forward to spot their destination, the massive mansion that belonged to the Midnight Society, located directly across from Liberty Park. The mansion was set back from the street, with a high stone wall sheltering the grounds from the sidewalk. Just inside the wall where large trees that where starting to regain their leaves and well maintained lawns and hedges. A large circular driveway led to the front of the old stone mansion that has several towers and peaked roofs. Off to the right of the mansion was the entrance to the gardens, which stretched around to the back and continued beyond.

Several luxury cars and limousines where already traversing the circular driveway, having dropped off some of the richest and most powerful individuals in Freedom City. Megan’s father, Donald Howell, a senior partner at Hartford, Grayson & Cole, steered the car around to the front of the mansion and came to a stop. Uniformed valets quickly moved up to open the doors for the Howell’s, and Megan took the offered hand of one as she exited from the back of the dark blue Bentley.

The young blonde was dressed in a long, sleeveless black evening gown that was perfectly tailored to her lithe and athletic body. She felt goosebumps form in the cool evening air, but did not let them bother her. She was certain it would be perfectly warm inside the mansion, particularly once she found her way onto the dance floor with some of the handsome young men that where always at these gatherings.

Megan’s mother, Erin Howell, came up beside her as her father made his way around the car to join them. “I am glad you where able to be here tonight.†Erin Howell said to her daughter. “It has not felt quite the same going to events without you these last few months.â€Â

Megan smiled, “I have missed these sorts of things as well. And of course you and dad.â€Â

Megan’s father came over to join the two women, straightening out his tuxedo. “You ladies ready?†He asked, taking his wife’s arm as he started towards the entrance.

“Absolutely.†Megan replied with a grin, as she stared along beside her parents.

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He had been dodging this sort of thing for a while, but that only meant that when the parties finally caught up with the Emissary, they did so with a great vengeance and furious anger.

Top of the list had been another insisting request from the Midnight Society, and when he had a new social project in mind that was going to take some serious favour trading come the day, he couldn't really say no.

He could however wear a tux instead of his costume again, and by now had done so enough times to pull off the look without seeming like a floating silver statue in a tuxedo.

His smiles were politely amiable as always, nodding to all the right people as he made his way into the mansion, gently shaking hands, moving through to say a hello to whoever had taken particular charge of this soiree. Though the extremely perceptive might catch his feet hovering fractions of inches off the ground as he walked, it was all the same a graceful, fluid stride, the effortlessness of it a showcase of the Emissary's perfection of form.

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The Howells had not made it far into the mansion when they had stopped to talk with Arthur Stromberg and his wife Anne. Megan smiled warmly as she spoke with the Stromberg’s, whom she had known as long as she could remember. Her father did a good deal of legal work for Mr. Stromberg and his investment company, and he managed a good bit of her family’s money. The group where still making some small talk when Emissary came floating into view.

Erin Howell turned towards the silver skinned hero and gave him a warm smile. “Emissary, it is a pleasure to see you again.†She said in greeting. “I trust you remember my husband, Donald and my youngest daughter, Megan.â€Â

“Very nice to see you again.†Donald Howell said as he held out his hand.

“Nice to see you again.†Megan said with a slightly sly smile. Emissary was a fellow member of the Freedom League, and one of the few that knew she was Velocity.

“And this is Arthur and Anne Stromberg.†Erin added, indicating the older couple. “Arthur, Anne, this is Emissary, from Utopia Isle and a member of the Freedom League.â€Â

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His expression regained that earnest cheerfulness he more often kept up on sighting the Howells. To the Emissary, they were one of Freedom's better examples of what could be done with wealth and privelege, from a daughter that was a valued colleague, to a matron who had been of key aid in sponsoring some of the charitable events he had put together.

He took Donald's hand with a nod, stifling the urge to perform his usual happy sort of wave to Megan.

"I'm pleased to see all of you."

He paused then to look to the Strombergs on their introduction, inclining his head to them.

"And good to meet you as well. Any friends of the Howells are certainly friends of mine."

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