The centuries old HellFire Club represent society's favoured elite; the wealthy, the privileged and the famous. It is a meeting place, a playground of the rich, where society's select few can meet others like themselves, strike business deals and enjoy pleasures that might be somewhat forbidden in today's moral standards. To ain access to the HellFire Club is an honour like no other. It takes wealth, power, prestige and intellect to be enrolled as a member. But, unbeknown to these members, there is a force behind the club. A small, 'crème du la crème, of men and mutants, with the liberated view on using the club's power and influence to take over the world amassing political and economical power, have been selected from the members to rule the Club with an iron fist. These members, named after chess pieces to demote their importance and status in the Club are known by many names, the Council of the Chosen, the Lord's Cardinals, the Circle Club... but one name is used most commonly. That of... the Inner Circle.
The HellFire Club is a worldwide organisation, having branches in New York, Jamaica, Las Vegas, Brazil, England, Antwerp, Rome, Madrid, Paris and Beverly Hills to name but a few. But not only is it a global club, but it has been around for hundreds of years, the earliest Club dating back to the 1500s. Yet, one of the most influential Clubs was founded in the late 1760s, the HellFire Club of London. This Club was arguably the most powerful of its type at the time, sporting two courts in the Inner Circle, one black and one red. Throughout Europe other Clubs had adopted colours such as red, white, grey, green and blue. But the most feared was that of the London branch. In the 1770s, two of the clubs leading members, Sir Patrick Clemens, the Black King, and his wife, Diana Knight, the Black Queen, immigrated to New York to start their own HellFire Club.
In 1842, two powerful members of the London Branch, Black Knight, Irvan Booth, and Red Queen, Rhiannon Booth, decided to break away and form their own Northern HellFire Club in England. This proved successful, and it eventually assimilated the London Branch. But after a terrorist attack on the club, it was decided to allow the London Branch their independence again, and the Club, headed by black king Steven Booth, immigrated to Beverly Hills in 1900, starting a new and powerful cabal.
But around this time is when the HellFire Clubs truly come to life. The New York branch had grown and become incredibly strong, sporting a White and Black court. But also, in the nearby town of Las Vegas, a devious demon, the man known as Lord Flyin' Ryan had started his own unit, the Red Court. There two Clubs worked hard together, but never truly trusted one another.
Recently, the long dormant HellFire Club of Rome, the Grey Court, resurrected itself under the rule of Hawkeye, closely linking up with the New York White branch and the New York Black Branch, now two separate institutions, as well as the shadier, more deadly Red Court of Las Vegas. These four Clubs are the core HellFire Clubs, having unrivalled and unchallengeable power. And as some of the wealthiest men and women on the face of the planet, the members of the Inner Circle wield more economic powers than many small countries. And when Steven Booth became a member of the Red Court's Inner Circle, he merged the two Clubs, Beverly Hills and Las Vegas together.
The HellFire Clubs are still the same elite, powerful organisation that they've always been, but in today’s society, their policies and morals have changed. They strive for economic dominance and technological supremacy, instead of World Domination. Most Courts have also allowed mutants to train and be educated at their facilities. The premier example of this is the newly independent Purple HellFire Court of Jamaica, headed by Professor Steven Booth. When they split from the Red Court of Las Vegas, they made their own Club using Steven's Castle as their base, but transforming it into a school for gifted and genetically different pupils. But, to say that all the villainy and deceit has gone from this age-old Club would be a lie. For, the members of this Club know what they want, and know how to get it, allowing nothing to stand in their way. Although their attitudes have changed, the same irreproachable lust for power, wealth and dominance still remains. Clubs changes, Kings are overthrown and new Courts are established all the time. Indeed, the HellFire Club is a Club to be respected, but also feared.
Recently, the PHC relocated back to the immense power
basin of Burnley, England, changing their name to the Blue Hellfire Club. But the power and strength hasn't diminished, merely re-inforced itself.
By Steven Booth