Location, and other quandaries.
"I also agree that the Castle is inappropriate as a headquarters. This might just be a lifelong New Yorker talking, but I don't like the idea of centering ourselves outside the city proper. I also don't care for the image." Union looks around the room, "If we're going to be helping the common man, we have to be perceived as *part* of the common man. Dumas was an aristocrat, and it might have seemed perfectly logical to him for us to have the trappings of royalty, but it goes against my grain, and would set a tone for the group that would be very hard to overcome."
Union continues, his pen spinning through his fingers at impossible speeds as he talks, "That being said, there is a lot in this arrangement that is highly valuable. This 'Avengers Trust Fund' would let us have the staff Duststorm mentioned earlier, and give us the funds to produce the equipment we may need. Even if we don't want to use the castle as a central headquarters, I'm sure that Dumas had filled it with laboratories and equipment if nothing else, and it may well make an excellent secondary location for research and staff. The monies of the trust fund could be used to set up a more central base in Manhattan, assuming that Dumas didn't own other properties in the city that we might be able to convert. Finally," and Union looks over at Aegis for this, "while the idea of heroing for pay might leave a bitter taste, I know that several of us have to worry about day to day expenses, and the actions we've taken thus far have made keeping a day job more demanding."
While Duststorm is reading through the documents, her demeanor changes to be much more business like. "I agree with most of you. As appealing as being a full time hero sounds, I don't think I'm ready for that step. I can forego the lion's share of the stipend if the money can be better used elsewhere."
"OK, If I'm going to be the first chairman, then here's the first rule: for these executive matters we'll work by a vote of the team, majority wins, Chairman gets a second vote in case of a tie. Is that satisfactory? Then lets' get started..."
"Maybe first we should figure out what it is we're voting on." There's a faint hint of amusement in Aegis' voice. "Seems like we have a few major issues as a result of all of this. First, do we take the money at all? Seems like no one here is seriously saying 'no' to the whole deal, though I do think we should be careful about how we use it. Two, base locationčthe castle or someplace else, and if someplace else, what and where? With the money in the trust, we could find a smaller house in the city, or just office space and a phone line for the time being. Nothing says whatever we do has to be permanent."
"What about leasing a space here? It seems that most of us don't want to live at our base of operations, so all we seem to need for now is a storefront. A place for meetings and for others to contact one of our representatives." Duststorm gestures at the conference room. "We could still use the castle as a research location. But keeping something in the city is a good idea, and to almost everyone this building with New York as an icon of power and achievement."
"Then there's the charter; what kind of scope do we want to take on, at least to start with? Maybe stick to the US, with an exception for humanitarian or rescue missions?" Aegis sounds questioning. "As it's worded, it sounds like it wants to set us up next to the UN as an extra-national force. Finally, the bylaws. Maybe we should set those aside for a later time. See what kind of problems come up, and what the best way to deal with them turns out to be."
Janet nods, "That would probably be best, take it one step at a time until we know how much work we will have."
Union looks back and forth between the two women _well, at least we don't lack for assertive females..._ "OK, there are several things I want to put to a vote, but I've made some notes here on what I think an appropriate charter and set of rough operating rules based on what we've discussed so far and what Dumas had put together in his versions."
"First, the Avengers are a team dedicated to the protection of the populace against threats that conventional authorities cannot or will not handle on their own. We must act as guardians of a public trust, and not place ourselves above civil authority except in such times where that authority is demonstrably corrupt. We do not sanction criminal activity, and do not harbor criminals."
"Agreed," Dark Angel said, unfolding his arms.
"Second, While the Avengers are an independent, non-governmental agency, we will act at the behest of civil authority in such instances where we deem that the circumstances both warrant our involvement and where we feel our involvement will have a positive impact. Currently we do not operate outside the United States except in cases of humanitarian aid or where we are specifically petitioned by a foreign government. Such international actions are chosen with the same criteria as national ones. We will maintain positive relations with civil authority whenever possible.
"It is the wisest course of action at this time," Dark Angel said diplomatically.
"Third, the Avengers have a chairman, selected by a majority vote of the active team members, who serves for one year, until they chose to step down, or until voted out of office by three quarters of the active team. The Chairman serves as the final arbiter of in-field decisions, organizes meetings and meeting agendas, and if need be possesses a tie breaking vote on organizational matters. The chairman is able to delegate authority to other active or trainee team members as he sees fit, and each chairman is able to design what he/she feels would be their most efficient organizational structure. The only constant delegated position is that of Deputy Chairman, who assumes the duties of Chairman should the Chairman become incapable of performing them.
"Agreed," Dark Angel added again.
"Fourth, the membership of the Avengers shall not exceed eight active members, with positions for up to two reserve, honorary or trainee members at any time. The members of the Avengers shall be legal adults," he looks down the table at Emerald, "Excepting those members who were founders of the group. The founding members of the team are those eight people present in this room. A posthumous membership is extended to Specter AKA Victor Von Doom, and the second Captain America is assumed to be one of our honorary members until we decide differently."
"Does all of that sound acceptable?" Union looks up and down the table.
"It is fine with me," Dark Angel stated. "The group's goals are noble and I shall support you all in performing them."
"I have a one other matter to discussif we are going to accept the money and arrange for some sort of payroll, I like the idea of having one or more team members being active Avengers 'full time'. Such people would be considered on call for emergencies at all times, and it would make sure we had a rapid response to problemsthe active team members would be our first line while the rest of the team organized and responded."
"I don't know whether any members of the team would be willing to take up such a position -it would mean serious sacrifices in your current lifestylebut if nothing else with the trust fund it would be a well paying job." Union looks at everyone, "How do you feel about that?"
"I have no other calling, save using my God-given abilities for the betterment of Mankind. I shall undertake this good work full-time," Dark Angel intoned.
"Alright. Now, on to the other issues..." Adrian sighed as he looks down at the list of questions jotted down in front on him. _It's going to be a long night..._
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