Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood and Bourbon
“Big business can make laws as easily as it can break them—and with as little impunity.”
“‘How About Friday?’ My sister passed away and her funeral was scheduled for Monday. When I told my boss, he said she died so that I would have to miss work on the busiest day of the year. He then asked if we could change her burial to Friday. He said, ‘That would be better for me.’”
—Anonymous shipping executive, FTD Florists
“Big business is not dangerous because it is big, but because its bigness is an unwholesome inflation created by privileges and exemptions which it ought not to enjoy.”
The trappings of the rich and famous capture our attention on a daily basis. Mortals (and Kindred) who enter the corporate sector can speak the language of money and investments. They peruse the Wall Street Journal with all the interest another person lends to a riveting novel. Influential financiers know where to find capital; they can access banks, mega-corporations and the truly wealthy of the world. Characters with clout in this industry influence CEOs, executives, bankers, financiers, technical officers, stock brokers, managers, loan agents, secretaries, bank tellers, cubicle drones, and other white-collar corporate yes-men.
|Background Dots||Level of Influence|
|•||Contractor or new hire|
|••••||Executive or board member|
|•••••||Board chairman or CEO (non-MNC), executive or board member (MNC)|
|••••• •||Board chairman or CEO (MNC), executive or board member (gigantic MNC)|
|••••• ••||Board chairman or CEO (gigantic MNC)|
Allies (Corporate) •••••
• Matthew Malveaux
CEO and board chairman of Malveaux Oil and a man of tremendous wealth and means. Rumors abound about his business practices, but nothing has ever been made to stick to the middle Malveaux brother. From Matthew flows the lion’s share of the family’s wealth. Though most of the family members have multi-million dollar trusts that could sustain them in comfort for the rest of their lives before they reach maturity, Matthew provides the vast sums of spending money that the next generation of Malveauxes blow through regularly, and also helped fund his brother Nathan’s congressional bid against other powerful state politicians in the last election. Matthew is a shrewd businessman that has steadily grown the family’s business interests in his time. Known to make a habit of buying an expensive new sports car every year, gifting older models to favorite nieces and nephews: it’s possible to identify who has his favor by who gets the most recent car. Encourages relatively responsible spending by the family as a whole. Matt himself is one of the only two Forbes-listed billionaires to reside in Louisiana, with an estimated net worth of $1.6 billion. (The other, John Dyer, is the owner of the Saints and his great-uncle by marriage.)
Caroline Malveaux-Devillers stayed in one of Matthew’s properties at Audubon Place during her time at Tulane University. He evicted her after several incidents following her Embrace that culminated in the house being completely ransacked by agents of Prince Vidal. He delivered a eulogy at Westley’s funeral stating that his nephew had good taste in cars. After his brother Orson suffered a heart attack, Matt attempted to have him poisoned in the hospital.
Allies (Corporate) ••••
• Calhoun “Budd” Boggs
Notable Boggs patriarch, Vietnam War criminal, and military-industrial board member of Textron.
• Junior “Cal” Boggs (Ally [Corporate] ••••)
Boggs ‘black sheep’ who graduated from both high school and college and is a Certified Public and Management Accountant. Currently works as the de facto CFO for Textron and is the Boggs Clan’s reluctant book-cooker.
• Lyman B. Whitney
Former chairman and CEO of Whitney National Bank (and descendant of the principal founder of the eponymous bank back in 1883). Publicly, he retired from his position after the Global Financial Crisis of 2008, when his company almost went bankrupt. Privately, he was forced out by the board because he was going slowly but steadily mad. Currently lives in the clock tower-turned-penthouse atop the main branch of ‘his’ bank on St. Charles Avenue in the CBD. Has a psychotic obsession with clocks and time, including his penchant for collecting pictures of people’s watches and for tracking the specific day, hour, minute, and second of every birth and death in NOLA. Thus far, Whitney’s family and board members appease Lyman’s lunacies in hopes of keeping his otherwise scandalous madness a secret.
Lyman facilitated Amelie Savard’s overnight stay at the infamous LaLaurie House, which had been repossessed by Whitney Hancock Bank. Caroline Malveaux-Devillers subsequently earned Lyman’s inordinate gratitude when she saved his granddaughter Sarah’s life during the Eighth District police station shooting.
Director of Malveaux Oil’s sprawling legal department, Mark Stines cuts a dashing and charismatic figure. A brilliant legal mind, Mark might be a better business manager. A devoted husband and father, he’s a true believer in the ‘good’ of industry, and truly hates environmental activists and others that regularly try to shut down or stymie his business. A former JAG officer, he treats lawsuits like battles and the ongoing struggle against environmentalists and liberals like a war. His lawyers are his officers, his paralegals and assistants are his soldiers, and for his enemies there is no mercy. This militant attitude has built a fierce camaraderie within the department and generated a highly competitive—and successful—environment. Originally from Texas, Mark’s father was an oil field worker, and it was his bull-nose attitude and experience with the industry deep down to his bones that led Matthew Malveaux to bring Mark on board. His life would otherwise be perfect if he weren’t gay and deeply closeted. He’s only rarely been with other men, always discretely, and almost never for anything longer than a one-night stand.
Emmett Delacroix serviced Mark while working as an escort for Christina Roberts in 2008. The legal director vigorously took out his pent-up lusts on the then-teenager and made Em dress like a girl so their liaisons would feel “less gay.” After Emmett quit the escort business, he blackmailed Mark for larger cash payments than even the corporate executive’s handsome salary could long bear. Mark soon discovered his blackmailer’s identity through Christina Roberts and savagely raped Emmett in retaliation. Emmett retaliated in turn by leaking pictures of their liaisons to Mark’s family, then luring him to the Ninth Ward where he was ambushed, castrated, and finally met an ignominious death getting his brains blown out by D’angelo ‘Murda-Cent’ Turcotte.
• Paul Simmons
Paul is a senior director at Fidelity Bank who most of his associates find a thoroughly banal man. He shares nothing about his personal life beyond “two ex-wives, no kids,” gives no indication of having any hobbies or outside interests, and rarely talks about anything besides work. He never yells or raises his voice, but most of his subordinates are afraid to do a bad job around him, though they’d be hard-pressed to say why. Their instincts are not wrong. In reality, Paul is a predator with sexual appetites utterly beyond the pale of what any bank teller or middle manager could conceive. Even seasoned escorts are hard-pressed to think of fetishes he hasn’t indulged, and Christina Roberts refuses to hire her girls out to him: she thinks they’d come back too damaged, or just never come back at all. The girls who’ve survived Paul’s attentions think their pain, fear, and humiliation is what gets him off, more than anything else, but none of them feel as if they really know what goes on inside his head. Sometimes all he asks for is blowjobs and missionary. Other times, he attends sex parties with other rich degenerates and human predators who share his appetites, and whose guest list is smaller after the party is over. Paul makes his home in Audubon Place, a gated community protected by armed guards who ensure no one will ever respond to the screams. He sometimes even invites the guards to join in.
Story Ten: Diana Flores told her daughter that Paul is in charge of the trust funds for all of Maxen’s kids, but warned her that he knows where his bread his buttered and who his friends are. Undaunted, Celia went to see Paul to find out what she could about her trust. He explained the terms and asked if she was having monetary problems, then offered to pay her out early if she gave him a blowjob. He said there would be more where that came from if she came back. She did.
Story Eleven: Celia attempted to end her arrangement with Paul. He swiftly overpowered her and held her down while a Blackwatch guard, Jamal Harrison, forced her to perform oral sex for $50 to show her how the world would value her. He said that she would always belong to him. Nights later he proved it when he showed up to a New Years Eve party at Maxen‘s house and raped her in an upstairs bathroom with Jamal.
In 2010, Jade Kalani ran into Paul at another New Years Eve party at Maxen’s house. He seemed to know what she was and made veiled comments to her during the evening. When Jade’s boyfriend showed up to cause trouble Paul followed the pair of them and staked Nico. Seconds later he was gutted by a second assailant. Against her better judgement, Jade gave him enough blood to keep him alive rather than let him bleed out on the floor.
Allies (Corporate) •••
• Ernest Phimlee
The distant descendant of architect Thomas Sully, Ernest Phimlee is the public face of Canal@Camp Apartments LLC, the ‘owner’ of the Giani Building. He handles all public functions associated with the building—and a number of other properties owned by Rishu “Rich” Pavaghi. In that role he is given relatively wide authority over the day-to-day administration of the company—an authority that Caroline Malveaux-Devillers has been quick to exploit to her own advantage by ‘making his life easier.’
• Daniel “Dan” Merinelli
Aerospace engineer, husband to Eveline Merinelli, and brother-in-law to Emmett Delacroix. He is facing some amount of financial hardship after his wife’s arrest, conviction as an accessory to Emmett’s murders, and subsequent job loss.
• Joseph Montobon
Heir to the Montobon fortune, Joseph is young, ambitious, and confident that he can restore a once-vast manufacturing empire gutted by NAFTA. A one-time suitor to Savannah Malveaux, the two drifted apart after their college years as they became increasingly embroiled in their family’s businesses. Joseph is as much a slave to his job as Savannah is, and recent rumors connect him to the city’s Mafia just as many of his business ventures are beginning to show signs of life. Whether that’s only a coincidence, or rumors spread by jealous rivals, none can say for certain. What is certain is that Joseph’s star, and the Montobons’, is on the rise for the first time in a generation.
• Kasey and Kerri Smart
Ms. Smart has been Matthew Malveaux’s personal assistant for nearly a decade, joining him right out of college in her ‘dream job.’ Clever, personable, and with a firm will that keeps the riffraff away from her boss, she’s thrived in her role as gatekeeper and schedule keeper, and in so doing been able to travel the world at his side. There was a time when Vera viewed the younger woman as a threat, but a legion of P.I’s spent almost three months following her around and ensuring she was not alone with her husband, and so put those fears to bed. What very few, including her investigators realized, was that there are, indeed, two Ms. Smarts, both employed in the same role, and both smitten with Matthew. Each night one returns to her home, hotel room, or suite, and the other goes to join him. For now the twins are content to be his mistresses, enjoying a life of high society beside him without suspicion, though how long that will persist none can say.
• Lucille Jonas
Mother of Emil Kane and senior etiquette instructor at Clemonte Etiquette, a Los Angeles-based etiquette consultation company. She has vigilantly severed all ties to her former life in New Orleans.
• Luke Malveaux
The oldest of Caroline Malveaux-Devillers’ siblings (though junior to her), Luke is an Ivy League graduate with an eye towards business who is already sunk hip-deep in the family’s oil company. Tall, handsome, and well-spoken, Luke fully looks the part of the well-groomed and well-bred heir to the family fortune. He has a knack for drumming up foreign capital that has put him in contention with his cousin Savannah as next in line for the family business. He’s particularly close to several Saudi princes, having roomed with one in college, and has heavily drawn upon them to raise his profile within the company and in his uncle’s eyes. Matthew is intrigued, but the connection also makes him nervous at the prospect of a foreign takeover should Luke gain power. Oil has long been the foundation for the Malveaux fortune, and introducing foreign elements to it is… unsettling.
• Savannah Malveaux
The oldest daughter of Matthew Malveaux, Savannah is a successful Stanford graduate looking to break the traditionally male-dominated family’s glass ceiling by succeeding her father as CEO and board chairperson of the family oil business. Savannah publicly eschews being a feminist, but privately sees no reason why she should not be viewed as the heir apparent to the company. While her cousin Luke is a charming face good at drumming up capital, Savannah is quite the opposite. Cold, severe, and utterly professional, Savannah has succeeded because she has a nose for the oil business. She can almost smell promising fields, and understands the particularities of the field work like few dedicated rig techs ever do. She is currently additional offshore options and working closely with her uncle Nathaniel to get additional fields opened up in the Gulf of Mexico. She has a long-term personal assistant, Emilia Rosa, with whom she is very close.
Caroline Malveaux-Devillers discovered during the 2004 St. Patrick’s Day parade that her then-teenage cousin was sexually attracted to women. She remains in the closet as of 2015, but delivered a eulogy at Westley’s funeral where she expressed sympathy for her cousin not being accepted for who he was.
Allies (Corporate) ••
• Caitlin Long
Married to her college boyfriend but career-focused, Caitlin works in personnel and human resources at Malveaux Oil and has enjoyed a great deal of success since she graduated from Tulane four years ago, rising to middle management in her department despite her relative youth. Rigidly professional at work to the point where many of her subordinates describe her as ‘that bitch’ or ‘that cunt’, but much more laid back outside of it. Majored in organizational communication in college and a former sorority head heavily involved in extracurricular activities at the school. Still goes out semi-regularly with girls from her sorority, with whom she has remained close. Comes from an upper-middle class background. Does want children ‘eventually’, but not a priority right now. Makes significantly more money than her husband at present, which is creating some conflict in their marriage. Ambitious, with a reputation for being able to get things done when under pressure and being capable of playing the political game at work at a high level. The rumor is part of her rise to power is because she has some kind of dirt on someone higher up in the company.
• Emilia Rosa
An anchor baby for her impoverished Mexican parents, Emilia has risen far in the world behind good looks, intellect, and force of personality. Personal assistant (and some whisper more—though they do so quietly indeed) to Savannah Malveaux, Emilia is the charming public face who the antisocial Malveaux heiress puts forward in her place. In fact, Emilia attends most of the meetings on behalf of her boss, standing in her place and reporting back to her. Another Stanford grad, she’s followed Savannah’s course since they attended business school together, and has significant influence on her decision-making. Matthew Malveaux tolerates Emilia only for so long as she shields his daughter from public (and private) scrutiny. He looks down on her humble origins, and the backroom whispers as to the nature of her relationship with his daughter may soon see her banished from the company if they reach him. Emilia grew up in the United States and speaks without an accent, but has a distinctly spicy tint with rolled r’s that she sometimes uses to ply her charms.
Emilia attended Westley Malveaux’s funeral as Savannah’s guest. She did not remain for the private gathering of the three brother’s families and their significant others.
• Krista Lynch
One of Caroline Malveaux-Devillers’ few friends from high school in Baton Rouge. Formerly on the debate team, she now works as a PR consultant.
• Robert “Robby” Brant
Relatively recent college graduate, corporate accountant and head of the local HEMA chapter. Bright but nerdy and socially awkward, Robby got into swordsmanship as a teen in part due to his love of fantasy, and in part due to his love of history. He continued through college and recently, on his return to New Orleans, established himself as one of the most experienced and skilled members of HEMA in the region. Humble and shy, he’s frequently underestimated right up until the moment he picks up a sword for a bout, at which point his lanky awkwardness tends to disappear. Prefers to fight sword and buckler, but is relatively well rounded across the board. Teaches open classes three times a week at a local gym that HEMA leases space from in the evening. Two other nights he runs Dungeons & Dragons and World of Shadow games for many of those same HEMA attendees. Very tall (6’8"), thin, and lanky, with unruly hair and glasses. Avowed atheist who rarely speaks of it, but feels passionately against religion when pressed, citing all the historic misery it’s caused.
Story One: Amelie Savard spoke with him online when looking into local HEMA groups.
Story Twelve: Robby was present with his longtime girlfriend Emily Rosure when Celia showed up to a family dinner high as a kite. He endured her (not very) subtle flirting and suggestive remarks with diplomatic aplomb. Emily later told Celia that the sex is great and that he’s going to teach her how to handle a sword for the next time she needs to stab someone.
Allies (Corporate) •
• Evelyn Anders
A recent college graduate from Tulane formerly associated with the campus’ College Republicans, Evelyn, Evelyn ‘leveraged’ her relationship with the chapter’s then-president, Caroline Malveaux-Devillers, to land a job as a front desk worker at the Malveaux Oil main office in downtown New Orleans, but hopes to rise much further in time. Very much a people person, Evelyn knows well the value of social networking and actively uses her position to build a relationships with all manner of incoming workers each day. Also highly organized, keeping detailed records of her daily activities in the form of journals and planners. From a lower middle class background and deeply desires stability she did not always have as a child. Conservative and Catholic, though she doesn’t attend services as often as she used to in college, or would like.
She attended Caroline Malveaux-Devillers’ 26th birthday party after not seeing her former president in quite a while.