Fandom: X-Men/Criminal Minds
Pairing: Emma Frost/Emily Prentiss
Disclaimer: I do not own X-Men or Criminal Minds. There will be a cameo by a character from another fandom as well. I, however, was not the first person to cross over these two fandoms, and am completely stealing the idea from Argentine's Jubilee and Fifty-Foot Janine. (Another fic which is hugely better than mine, and I consider to be basically canon).
Apologies: I'm sorry this part took so long, particularly because nothing actually happens in it. But I have some general idea about what is going to happen now, so hopefully the rest will flow better.
Summary: Emily's mother is dead, but her memory lives on, as does her desire to manipulate Emily's life away from serial killers and towards politics. But sometimes, serial killers and politicians are not that far removed.
“Emily, I want you to meet Roger Crooke, California State Senator, but maybe next year US Senate, and then President?”
The man, who looked like a model for his Armani suit, long rectangular jaw, dark eyes, a flop of hair over his forehead, and a smile, more toothy and disarming than the usual model’s furtive grin, shook her hand and shook his head at Edward’s comments.
“We'll see.” His smile didn’t fade, and his comment sounded more satisfied than modest.
“Tomorrow, I suppose.”
Roger glanced at Emily. “Are you coming to the meeting?”
Emily blinked. “I…” she looked at Edward. “Am I?”
“Of course.” He patted her shoulder again. “Even if you’re not interested yet, it’s important for everyone to get to know you.”
Roger Crooke caught sight of someone and waved her over. “You should meet my protégée, Janine Kishi.”
“Hello.” The woman smiled and Emily couldn’t help but smile back. “You are Emily Prentiss, correct?”
“I’m pleased to meet you. I’m very impressed by some of the things you’ve done.”
Roger patted her shoulder. “This is Emily, not Elizabeth.”
Janine tipped her head. “Isn’t that what I said? In fact, I was thinking of the Kamas Utah incident.”
“Fiasco, you mean.” Emily didn’t want to think about that. The name of that town just brought up bad memories. Her hand shook slightly as the world faded out. It would be so easy to not be here right now, to not be anywhere…
“You caught the killer, alive.”
The two men looked blank, then turned to speak privately to each other.
“We had some help.” Emily knew she sounded stilted and unfriendly, but she couldn’t force her way back into the world so quickly. “I’m surprised you heard about that one. Only the people who are obsessed with serial killers and consider us the next best thing watch us that closely.”
“I have… recently become more interested in your work.”
Janine smiled, but with a bit of a sickly look that matched too closely the way Emily felt. Emily smiled wanly back. There was something strange about her; about the way she looked at you like she could read what was written on the inside of your skull. But Emily felt nothing inside, no scuff against her shields like she did when Emma had had enough of skirting things and decided to get the information the direct way.
* * *
“It reads like a total house cleaner, except not. It’s the places the bodies are planted, like he wants to get our attention. The email too.”
Morgan agreed with Reid’s summation, and ignored Hotch and Rossi’s disapproving expressions. “It’s almost like the homeless guys don’t matter, they’re just convenient props in whatever game he’s playing.”
“Or she’s playing,” cut in Rossi. “There’s nothing to rule out a female unsub yet.”
“We’re not cops for a reason,” said Hotch coolly. “If they thought she was a viable subject they wouldn’t have called us. We need a profile, not a suspect.”
Morgan frowned. He looked over the pictures of the victims again. “There’s something about this that’s bugging me,” he said. “Young Latin druggie, old white lady, old black man. I’d say the e-mail’s bullshit, and the unsub is a white man, thirty to fifty, wealthy, unmarried and successful, or at least thinks he should be successful, but pretty recently something’s happened to throw him off his game, and he’s blaming all the others, because they’ve taken away his prized privilege.”
“Make that sound less angry black man, and you’ve got something pretty good.”
Morgan preened at Hotch’s approval.
Rossi shook his head. “No way to make that fit an Asian woman? Look at the places, a library? That man you described, he wouldn’t set foot in a library. Not a woman?”
“You think it's some crazed librarian, tired of all the riffraff coming in without being able to read?’
“Should we just disregard the email?” asked JJ. “Could the unsub be like Morgan’s successful man, but be a mutant as well?”
“He wouldn’t have the same sense of privilege,” said Reid, thinking out loud. “It would make more sense for him to target higher-ups. The glass ceiling pushing him down, not the glass floor falling apart beneath him.”
“I don’t know,” said JJ. “Some mutants have a pretty strong sense of privilege.”
* * *
Emma had apparently not been to enough of these parties recently, if her barely post-teenage former students were showing up. Tony had pretended to see someone he knew and abandoned her to her fate. Jubilee was still emitting so much excitement that Emma feared for the fuse box.
“I think I was informed that you were heading off to LA to seek your fortune in Hollywood, the last I heard. How did you manage to end up working for the California state senate?”
Jubilee shrugged and wrinkled her nose. “LA sort of sucked. I did some extra work, and then got blacklisted for blowing up a trailer, so I hitched up the coast and crashed with Nini while applying for school. I worked on her campaign instead of paying rent, and she offered me a job, because apparently I didn’t screw everything up as was expected. It's a shit job, but hey, perks!”
“You’re in school though?”
Jubilee crossed a pair of fingers on both hands. “At Cal,” she said, with a rocking motion of coolness.
Emma tried to not let every ounce of pleasure she felt show on her face. “I’m glad to see that you’ve gotten out of your own way for once.”
Jubilee stuck her tongue out. “Come on, you’re impressed, admit it.”
Emma’s expression spread into a grin. “Just validated.”
“A little impressed.” Emma conceded. “Or would you prefer utterly astounded?”
“I’ll take ‘a little impressed.’ Because I am a little impressive,” Jubilee pressed her hand to her chest dramatically. “But you always knew I had potential, even when it was locked so deep beneath my-“
* * *
Emily considered the fact that ninety percent of the room was constituted of white men between the ages of thirty and sixty, all wearing tuxedoes (with black ties, the white ones would be broken out for the actual ball). As her uncle was dragging her towards yet another group of men, sipping bourbon and speaking in hushed tones with cruel expressions, she wondered if it would be easier to remember their names if she wasn’t a lesbian. Women stood out sharply, and not only because of the variety of dress. She had always noticed that when she looked back on a party, the five or so women who had been there were always clear in her mind, while often the men, unless particularly distinct, had a tendency to blur into a faceless heap.
“Emily, this is Sebastian Shaw. Mr. Shaw, Elizabeth’s daughter.”
Emily blinked in surprise at the sight of the animalistic man with muttonchops and a salt and pepper ponytail behind a receding hairline. He was certainly memorable, even before he took her hand, nearly grinding the bones together with the force of his grip, and kissed it.
“Yes,” he said with an odd hiss in his voice. “I’ve heard so much about you from my dear friend here.” He tapped Edward unaffectionately on the arm. His eyes scanned over her, looking for something she couldn’t identify, but she felt a rough sandpaper brush against her mind. It was weak, no chance at forcing its way through her shields. “I hear you are a federal agent. That must be… difficult, what with their attitudes. I wonder if you would be interested in your rights.”
Emily stared at him blankly. “I’m… quite happy at the FBI actually. What do you do, Mr. Shaw?”
“I survive on the good will of my friends,” he said, with an ugly tone. “Since my worthless son took my company from me.”
“I’m sure you’ll get it back soon,” said Edward, with a haste that suggested he head heard what followed one too many times already.
“Yes,” he said. “I believe I will.”
Edward turned to the man standing beside him, one with a shriveled face, and a bald crown, rimmed with long greasy grey locks that curled at the ends. “And Lorne! How are you? My grand-niece, Emily.”
His hand was clammy and he gave a limp, feelingless shake. “Pleasure,” he said grimly.
“Your master didn’t join us?” inquired Edward, and Emily glanced curiously at him at the word ‘master.’
“No,” Lorne replied gratingly. “He did not think it was worth his time.”
Edward shrugged. “Well, not all of us have such effective lackeys to do our dirty work, I suppose.”
Lorne sneered and turned back towards Sebastian.
Edward pulled Emily away, “Can’t stand him, really. A repulsive fellow.” He looked up and spotted someone else he knew. “Oh! Richard!”
* * *
Emma frowned. There was something wrong with the mental feeling around Janine, but she was another woman who had built strong shields by dissecting her emotional self from her rational self (mainly with the purpose of defending herself against her younger sister’s flurries of passion, her anger, disdain and resentment). And although she didn’t believe in ethics, Emma had standards, and invading a former student’s mind because something felt slightly off was not a route to be taken at the first opportunity.
“Are you all right?”
Janine nearly stepped back in shock at the question, but recovered quickly and flashed an insincere half-smile. “Of course. I’m fine.”
Emma shook her head. “I never thought of this as a place for you. You always seemed to intelligent to fall into this trap.”
Janine Kishi had been at the Massachusetts Academy during its most successful time, before exploding buildings and financial troubles scuppered it. Emma had run out of college preparatory curriculum to teach her after barely a year. She asked Janine about her future plans, and they decided to give her control of a lab at Frost Enterprises. In less than a year she had enough patents and capital to fund a fully self-sufficient business venture. They had only lost touch after Janine decided to move to California and study political science. Frost Enterprises still sold an entire line of products she had developed while working there.
“I want to change things,” Janine replied, with a slightly ironical grin that Emma recognized from herself when acknowledging the truth of an obvious cliché. “I’m not a warrior, but I don’t understand how so many people can be satisfied with the status-quo. It’s quite astonishing how people manage to blind themselves.”
Emma grinned. “Astonishing? Or just sad? But you shouldn’t be here. These boys are all about the status quo. They like the fear and violence, because, as men with power, they are not a target. It has the added benefit of weeding out the riffraff. Survival of the fittest always improves the gene pool, does it not?”
“I was invited. But I ran without their support. I just wanted to get out of Sacramento for a little while.”
And there was the feeling of wrongness again. Emma didn’t like it, but she always hated seeing her students unhappy, unless they deserved it.
* * *