NC-17, m/m, m/f/f
Screen Time Old Ones
Dawn looked over as Callia walked up to her desk, sucking on her bottom
lip. "What's wrong?" she asked, going back to her typing up of
memos that had to be sent out about leave time, vacation plans, the expo
in two weeks, and then the plan for after it.
"What's school like?"
"It's like what you do upstairs only there's more kids to take the
teacher's attention so you don't get her to help you all the
time." She glanced at her. "Why?"
"I was wondering. So there's other kids? Like lots?"
"In some schools, up to forty in one classroom, which means you never get personal time from the teacher."
"Oh." She considered that. "Are there smaller ones?"
"Yup." She finished the memos and pulled Callia closer. "Why
are you wondering about other kids things? Aren't you getting
enough other kid time at lessons?"
"Sometimes but they're usually older."
"That happens sometimes. You'd be the youngest in your class too
because you're at least a year ahead of the other kids your age."
She stared at her. "I can talk to your dad about school stuff if
you want. Or maybe other lessons?"
"I like my lessons a lot. When do I get to go back to gymnastics?"
"When your ankle is fully healed and Dr. Pigalli says so. She's
already talked to the coach about it and he knows you probably have
another two weeks on that sprained ankle."
She pouted. "I can walk fine."
"So? Doesn't mean it's healed. Trust me, just because it feels fine doesn't mean it's fully healed."
"You've had a sprained ankle?"
"And more than that."
"Did they hurt like that?"
"Yeah, some worse."
"Because bruised ribs means that you can't move your arms without pain and you can't find a comfortable way to sleep."
"Wow. So it hurts a lot more?" Dawn nodded. "Why did you have those?"
"Uncle Rhodey was screwing around and tipped some filing cabinets on me."
"Did you get him back?"
"Yup, he needed the infirmary too." She straightened out Callia's
shirt. "I'll have your dad check with Dr. Pigalli to see if you
can go back to gymnastics class."
"He's been really busy with Uncle Steve."
"Going to take a break for a girl talk, boss. Schedule meetings
about school stuff." She walked Callia off to the break room,
sitting in there with her. "Are you mad that they're spending so
much time together?"
"No! I love Uncle Steve." She blinked at her aunt. "They never spend time with me though."
"Sometimes people who are goofy the way they are together forget the
important things, like work. Your dad called off meetings for six
days, including some really important ones." Her having to go up
and tell Tony he could fuck or have a company, because the meeting he
was missing was important to the whole thing, thanks to the Pentagon
calling on them to make military things again, was not a good day.
Steve had put his foot down about calling off meetings. Tony had
pouted for hours but they came out with contracts that would keep the
Callia sighed. "He did?" She nodded. "So it's not just me?"
"No, it's not just you and I'll remind him that he forgot to read to you
last night too." Callia grinned shyly. "Now, you know how
my mom and Uncle Bruce got married?"
"I'm still confused. Is he Uncle Bruce or Grandpa?"
"Ask him which one he wants you to call him," Dawn suggested.
Callia grinned and relaxed. "But you know it's the second marriage
for my mom, right?"
"Yup, I've heard you call him stepdad."
"Stepdad is because he's not my biological dad. He's my new dad,
so that makes him a stepdad. Which is really a complicated thing
but it's all right."
"So, Uncle Steve is going to be my stepmommy?"
"Something like that but stepdad would probably work." Dawn
grinned. "But you can ask if he'd like to be called stepmommy."
Callia grinned. "I can do that." She sipped the soda her
aunt had gotten her. "Why does that one girl in the papers wear
heels at our age?"
"Because she thinks it's needed to make her feel pretty. When you
live in Hollywood, things are weird and women are expected to be
prettier than normal but in odd ways. They're all too skinny and
half of them end up being anorexic looking women who insist they're
beautiful and talented when they're not."
"Huh," she said, considering that. "Why can't she be smart instead?"
"Because she's not being encouraged in that like you are." She grinned. "If you meet her, don't tell her that idea."
"Remember the talk about the people who think they live in Candy Land
and get mad when they're shown that they don't?" She nodded.
"Hollywood is really Chutes and Ladders and Candy Land's baby game
system. It's weird that way and they get super mad when you prove
to them that heels, makeup, and thousand dollar dresses aren't required
for beauty." She sipped her own soda.
"You have some of those," she said.
"Yes, but I picked mine to tease others." She smiled. "Not
because someone told me I had to wear *that* designer and *that* dress
to impress the babbling people on tv who rate fashion. Frankly, I
know when I look good, I know when I feel good, and that's what's
important to me. They probably wouldn't like it because I don't
conform to the psychotic Hollywood rules but yay. We don't live in
"Are they like supermodels?"
"Yup, a lot. They tend to date between the two groups
unfortunately. Them and sports people. Some of them are
smart enough to avoid all that. Some.... You see them on the
tabloids and on tv."
"I saw some of that. Daddy made me turn it off before it warped me."
Dawn nodded. "It can, yeah." She sipped her soda. "Are you really lonely?"
"There's no one my age, Auntie."
"I know." She ruffled her hair and grinned. "Even if you
went to school you'd be with older kids. I can see if we can find
you some sort of after school thing that's got kids around your own
age." Callia beamed and nodded. "Then I'll look for
that." She grinned. "I'll talk to your dad about stuff
too." Callia hugged her. "Thank you. Go ask Andrew how
his new wife is?"
"He got married and didn't tell us?" she demanded.
"He barely told me and that was because he needed some help."
Callia huffed. "That's mean of him. Does Daddy know?"
"He knew afterward."
"He should've told me! He knows I like Andrew and Jonathan!"
She stomped off to talk to the geeks. She ran into her father and
kicked him on the ankle. "You should've told me my favorite geeks
got married!" She kept stomping off.
"Callia?" Steve asked.
"Boys, in here," Dawn yelled. She paged Pepper so she'd join
them. They walked in and sat down. "Callia's really lonely,"
she told Tony, who winced. "Including the fact that someone
hasn't read to her in a few days."
"Shit," he muttered.
"We explained stepparents," Dawn said with a grin. "And told her
to ask her Uncle Bruce if he wanted to be an uncle or grandpa."
"That's a good idea," Pepper agreed as she joined them. "I heard the girl talk thing."
"She wanted to know what school was like. I told her and then pointed out she'd probably still be with older kids."
Pepper grimaced. "Yes, she probably would be at least two grades ahead." She looked at Tony.
"After school things with kids her age was my suggestion, and she wanted to hurry back to gymnastics."
"I think she can go back next week but we need to do a checkup first,"
Tony admitted. He considered things. "Why did she kick me?"
"You didn't tell her about Andrew getting married."
"Oh." He grimaced. "They are her favorite geeks." Dawn and Pepper smiled and nodded.
"Is she mad at me?" Steve asked quietly.
"No," Dawn said, giving him a hug. "She's not mad at you.
She's a bit confused. Before you'd come to dinner, spend time with both
Starks, all that."
He nodded. "We haven't had a lot of time with her." He looked at Tony, who nodded. "We have to fix that."
"You are," Dawn assured him. "Now that you know you'll work on fixing it." He smiled at her for that bit of sense.
"Yeah, we can work on that," Tony agreed. "There's no reason for her to need the nanny after work hours."
"That means you'd have to work standard hours," Pepper said. "You
did the same thing to me, Tony." He nodded he remembered.
"So that's a priority, getting her some new friends her own age is too."
Dawn nodded. "I was thinking the multi-cultural center has classes
on Saturday that are all ages. They should have kids her age,
even if they are hippie spawn. I know the UN has something with a
kid's program too."
"Not bad ideas," Pepper agreed. "She's very multi-cultural with her dance classes too."
"I didn't figure Tony was going to start going on and on about his ancestors," Dawn said with a small shrug.
"No, not really," Tony agreed. He looked at Steve. "We had plans. We can change them?"
"Definitely. Or take her with us."
"No," Pepper said. "You two go out tonight after reading her the
bedtime story. Your dinner's not until nine." They smiled
and nodded. Callia had an eight o'clock bedtime. "Anything
"She asked about the little baby star that wears heels all the
time. I reminded her of the people who live in Candy Land get mad
when you tell them they don't talk and we talked about unrealistic
expectations. She pointed out I wore fancy dresses but I told her
Pepper nodded. "You do dress nicely now." Dawn grinned at
her for that compliment. "Wear that cream and gold corset dress to
the Expo's dinner?"
"Nope. I'm wearing something a bit more stately to show off the
pretty jewelry I won in a poker game." Pepper moaned. She
smirked. "I made sure they're not stolen."
Tony looked at her. "How often do you play kitten poker?"
"Twice a month. Usually on the fifth and the twenty-ninth."
He stared at her. She smiled. "Spike and Clem made sure I
was very good at kitten poker, even if I can't play regular poker.
It has given me contacts and safety things."
"It has," Steve agreed. "I can't imagine you letting them have kittens though."
She smiled. "You can bet with cash, Steve." She patted his
hand. "Or jewels." He nodded. "Natasha is still
figuring out the exchange ratio." Pepper snickered. "She
asked Spike to teach her how to play out in LA."
"When is she due back?" Pepper asked.
"Three days or so."
"Fine." She looked at Tony then at the doorway. "Callia, you don't sneak very well."
Jonathan leaned in. "It was me, not her. We have her in the lab nagging Andrew."
"I told her he got married. She kicked her dad for not telling her."
Jonathan grinned. "She's asking if they have things like messy kitchens?"
Tony winced and blushed. "My fault. No, the answer to that is probably not."
"Thanks, we were hoping it wasn't something like that." He left
them alone. "Peria, let's not eavesdrop with our cameraphone," he
complained loudly, then took it to toss it into the break area.
"They can fire you for selling those things to TMZ again."
Tony got up to get the film and erase it. "Yes, he will be if I
find out he did," he said loudly. That geek assistant ran
off. Tony sat down and put the phone on the table. "Anyway,"
he said dryly.
Steve smiled. "You picked that up off Dawn."
"I did," he agreed. Pepper giggled. "She's a bad influence."
"Only to impressionable minds," Dawn quipped with an evil smirk.
"Are you really impressionable? Or do I just give you ideas?"
"You give me many bad ideas." She swatted him. "Who was it that wanted the multi-line grappling hook system?"
"I still can't climb ropes." He shook his head. "That's why I have a motorized system."
"Quit while you're ahead, Dawn," Tony ordered.
"Fine. I won't give you one for the stupid dragon problem either."
He stared at her. "You already did." She wrote out something
and folded it over, sliding it over. He stared then at her.
"You evil, teasing wench."
She grinned. "Yes, I am." He groaned. She looked at
Pepper. "I need the approval stamp on my dress for the Expo
dinner. The other one I look really hot in. Mom nearly had
to cover the saleswoman's eyes. The green one for the Expo is a
bit more staid."
"I can look." She smiled. Dawn pulled up the photo and let
her see it. "Bit older but you do look good in it." She
handed it back. "Jewelry?"
"Very delicate emeralds."
"That's a good match. Did you buy it?"
"I wasn't sure if I wanted it in that color or not."
"Darker usually looks better on you. We can go look later."
Dawn smiled and nodded. Callia got walked back in and Tony picked
her up for cuddles. "Hi, Callia."
"Hi, Auntie Pepper and Bouncy Baby Ball."
Pepper hugged her then handed her back.
Tony cuddled her. She looked up at him then at Steve.
"Should I call you stepmommy or stepdaddy? I wasn't sure."
He whimpered and pulled her over to hug her. "Stepdaddy would be
good," he promised. "Stepmommy might make people wonder."
She giggled and cuddled him then her father. He grinned at Dawn,
who shrugged slightly.
"I think he'd make a good stepmommy," Tony said with a smile for his
female clone. "You can call him that around the house."
"Thanks, Daddy. Are you going to be home tonight?"
"Until you go to bed, then we're going out to dinner because it's an
anniversary. Tomorrow we're going to be home all night."
Callia grinned. "What's an anniversary?"
"It's an important date you celebrate. Like when you met or when you get married, that sort of thing," Dawn said.
"Oh. Is it a married anniversary?"
"No, it's a when we met one," Tony said.
"Oh." She nodded. "That's good. Are we going to get
married like Mommy did? Because I can find the laser pistol you
hid from me again if I need to. That way when poopy heads attack I
can help defend you or Stepdaddy Steve."
"When did you start calling people that?" Dawn asked. That was a
worrying phrase, it had been Willow's way of swearing. It had just
sent up a giant flag that had 'not good' written on it.
"I saw it on one of Mommy's old movies. She was telling me about Auntie Willow, who had problems."
"She did," Dawn agreed. "What did she tell you about her?"
"That she had magic, like us and Auntie Tara, but she wasn't careful and it hurt her."
Dawn nodded. "Which you never have to worry about doing.
Tara is teaching you the right way so you never have to worry about
that." Callia smiled and nodded. "What else did she
say?" She squeezed Steve's wrist under the table to tell him to
stop Tony from protesting.
"Mommy said she was really smart but she had redder hair than Auntie
Pepper did. That I reminded her a lot of Willow but I was a good
girl and I'd never have the problems that she did."
Dawn relaxed. "Willow was smart, but not like you and your daddy
are, and yeah, she had some problems that you'll never have."
Callia nodded, grinning again. "If you ever get worried about
that, you need to talk to us."
"I can do that. Did you know her?"
"Yeah, I knew Willow pretty well. Uncle Xander did too. She was your mom's best friend once she moved to Sunnydale."
"Wow." She looked at Pepper. "I need one of those like I need one of you."
"You'll find both when you're older, sweetheart. Buffy had to wait
until she was fifteen to find Willow and Xander. Tony didn't meet
me until he was twenty-three."
"Wow. That's really old." Pepper hugged her. "Maybe
some day soon then." She looked at her daddy. "Can I go to
"Not for a few years. There's some things we're worried about,
like the fact that you're so far ahead of your age group that you'd be
around kids who were much older and might pick on you."
"I can understand that."
"So once you reach high school levels, ninth grade time, we'll look at
schools." Callia smiled and nodded. "Which, admittedly might
be in a few years." He gave her a squeeze. "Anything else
you want to talk about?"
"Can I have friends my own age?"
"We'll find stuff for you to do with kids that're closer to your age,"
Tony promised. "It'll take us a bit to find some but we'll try a
few different things, including other sports if you want."
Callia kissed him. "Thanks, Daddy." She hugged him around
the neck, then Steve, then Dawn, then Pepper before running off.
"I'm going to read to Carrot."
"Okay. Use a real book story, not one on the computer please." He looked at Dawn. "Why?"
"Do you know how often I got lectured by Giles and Buffy not to turn
into Willow?" she asked quietly. He winced. "Buffy still
doesn't want me to do major magic things because she thinks I'll lose
control or start looking for more power."
"She doesn't realize that Willow had to search out a magic dealer for the black magic?"
"She knew. Blind spot." She shifted and crossed her
legs. "I love my sister but she does have some. Before the
wedding she was missing Willow again. Frankly, the rest of the
group didn't but my sister still wants to be the pretty, popular girl
she used to be. Willow was part of it back then."
"I've seen her retreating," Tony agreed. "Do you think it was a warning?"
"No, I think Buffy was remembering and told Callia. I think if
Willow was still around, she'd start being nagged like I was. They
never nagged Tara. I got a lot of 'you shouldn't do that, we
don't want you to start down Willow's path' from her and Giles, and
Giles had to go to the coven that tried to help Willow for his own
problems. It's like huge blindspot that I'm Dawn and not Willow
about the magic stuff. Even Tara did it once until she realized
because I huffed off. I don't want her to have to see that.
Have her compared to Tara, not to me, not to Willow."
"I can see that," Tony agreed. "Tara's trained by her mother in
the old ways. You learned them from her and your own research."
"Willow's method was a mash of whatever worked with mismeasurements and
not caring that she had to be precise and exact. There were plenty
of spells that backfired in Sunnydale that she blamed on Xander when
she substituted and wasn't exact. If I have to do something
ritually or with a potion, I'm perfectly on the recipe. I make
sure I know the steps before and practice if I have time. She'd
just throw things in. Sometimes not even close to what she needed
because she couldn't easily find it."
"It's the difference between target practice and shooting in the field," Steve said.
Dawn nodded. "Battle magic versus home practice and those sort of
spells, yeah. And Willow did it all like she was in the
field. Even when she had to be extra careful."
Steve nodded. "I get that. We were taught that there was a
difference." Tony nodded he had learned that too. "So we
want Tara to be her role model for the magic stuff?"
"Tara's mom trained her," Tony said quietly. "She got it starting
very young, like Callia has, and Tara always treats it as an art, not a
science to investigate and fiddle with. She treats it like a
philosopher treats their ideas. There's study, there's practice,
there's keeping certain ways. Willow, from what little I knew her,
was always 'let's try this to see what it does' about magic. She
treated it like McKay treats stupid laws of physics he doesn't agree
"Then she started to need to clear some of what she was hoarding so she
went to a magic dealer," Dawn said quietly. "Who fed her black
magic to get high." Steve shuddered. "Yup, and that's why
she snapped in the end. Her addiction got the better of her and
her old 'special girl' thing from high school led to her 'special girl'
issue on top of her addiction where she believed she was the
Goddess. Which is why I hated it whenever someone used to bring up
Willow and my skills in the same sentence."
"I get that," Pepper agreed. "I never nagged you that way, right?"
"You reminded me not to become like her or Hermione."
Pepper smiled. "You do have the brains and the tenacity of Hermione."
"I do, yeah." She grinned. "But I'd never be the know-it-all champ."
"No, you have more sense and like to hide your brains." She looked
at Tony and Steve. "Maybe we can let Callia start hanging out
with the coven?"
"No other magically active kids," Dawn said. "Or else I would've
brought her to something or Tara would've. Most of the kids are
early teens too. So it'd still be Callia acting like a big sister
for the twins."
Pepper nodded. "Are there younger witches?"
"Not many and mostly are inside family boundaries at her age. We
need to remind her again not to use her skills unless absolutely
necessary. The gymnastics coach had to have a talk with her when
she caught someone who fell."
Tony nodded. "I can do that too." He looked at Steve, who
grinned. "Some day we're going to have to tell her future kids not
to play with weapons the same way." Steve patted him on the arm.
"Hell, you keep reminding me not to play with weapons," Dawn
quipped. She got up. "Let me finish off that last memo for
approval." She left them to talk. Sometimes she knew how
Callia felt. She was a lot younger than the people she hung out
with. Even her mates.
Pepper smiled. "We'll figure it out. Callia will never turn into Willow."
"No, she won't. She's more likely to be an alcoholic than a magic addict," Tony said dryly.
"We can talk to her about that too," Steve said. "She's scowling at Dawn whenever she drinks."
"She does at me too," Tony agreed. He looked at Pepper then at Steve. "Any idea for things around her own age?"
"A play group?" Pepper suggested. "One that gets her onto a playground? Maybe in the park?"
"She'd love that," Tony agreed. He got up. "Let's go spend
time with my prototype." Steve smiled and followed him.
Pepper went back to her desk, taking the memos from Dawn to approve
of. They could figure it out while they ran the company.
Natasha had finally gotten to talk with the people who were screwing
with her history for a movie. "I believe that some of those were
classified for a reason and can compromise the integrity of SHIELD," she
"Most people don't know who certain agents are," she said dryly.
"Or which agents were at which events." He winced. "It could
get a great many killed, which would be a bad thing."
"Agent Natasha Romanoff," she corrected, making him swallow a
moan. She smirked. "Yes, I am one of those that would end up
dead." He slumped back into his seat. "For that matter, the
area where you start off is not a very good point."
"We have it planned out as part of one of the lead-in movies."
"Lead in movies?"
He pulled out a folder and showed her. "See, there's two lead-ins
then the main one." He looked at her. "That one will draw in
She smirked. "I'm not exactly the girlish sort that women go to see for a romantic moment."
He swallowed again. "No, I'd imagine not, but there's good backstory for both characters."
She pointed at one. "That biography was crap and it's pissing him off as well."
"You've talked to Mr. Stark?"
"Often." She crossed her legs. "I believe he found out and
his first call was to his legal department." He winced. "I
believe his assistant Dawn said that they appeared within minutes and
half the building shuddered in horror at her cackling in glee."
"Oh, dear." He looked it over. "Would he mind if it were more factual?"
"That would have to come from him." She wrote down a phone
number. "Pepper's assistant's direct line." He smiled.
"Do not abuse it. Stark is not the average genius."
"No, he's not. What about his assistant? Do you think
there's good backstory there?" Natasha quirked an eyebrow
up. "Um, saw that you're apparently dating her boyfriend."
"Not exactly," she said dryly. He popped up some sweat beads on
his forehead. She smirked. "Though nothing like that is
allowed to go on inside most agencies, including SHIELD."
"I can understand that," he said quickly. "Do you think we could revamp the scripts some to make them more factual?"
"I believe you should take out the mind control as there are still
groups trying such things." She stared at him. "Or else some
people would've hidden closer to home."
He shuddered. "I figured it had to be something drastic since you
guys went into hiding before the press descended and her mother said she
"Quite but it was...managed."
He nodded, calling in someone. "Agent Romanoff, this is the young actress I had cast as you."
Natasha looked her over. She was blonde, a bit closer to middle
age than Natasha herself looked. Not as curvy. "At least you
are not a stick figure."
She smiled. "No, I'm not. It's so important for girls to
have realistic, good, healthy role models to look up to. I realize
now I can't hope to live up to your form but I want to try really
She smirked a bit. "You may do, if the project is not stopped by
SHIELD getting involved. Director Fury nearly had his second
stroke of his life. The first due to a trainee agent asking if we
could have Halloween costumes." The actress giggled and left them
alone. She looked at him. "She's not bad, I've seen her in
"You like movies?"
"Sometimes. It's good to relax. Sometimes they're good noise in the background."
He grinned. "That's very cool. Is Stark a huge geek?"
"I've met worse ones, but yes. Most of the worse ones work for him or on Atlantis."
He swallowed. "I'd love to see Atlantis done as a movie."
She smirked. "Dawn has said another realm has them as a tv show."
He moaned. "That would be great." He took down that idea and
smiled at her. "Can I schedule to talk to you, the archer guy,
She considered it, sending a thought at him. "Perhaps but not this
week. Apparently there's been an issue." She looked at her
phone. "Oh, damn," she said in Russian. She put her phone
up. "SHIELD is a bit busy today."
He looked at the tv in the corner, turning it on. "Oooh. Why?"
"Apparently the desist capture order on Doctor Banner was not
heeded. They took his wife, who is Dawn's mother." The
producer winced. "Though, they were in New York. Clearly she
managed to hit a bit of time slipping," she said in Russian. "I
must talk to her about that."
He looked at her. "My grandmother was Russian." He
grinned. "Which is why I thought it was so important to get you
correct. She always looked up to you."
Natasha inclined her head. "Like the robotic version of me, I wish
it would be close but not perfect so it did not endanger anyone."
"There's a robotic version of you?"
"Thanks to a scientist that lost his mind."
He whimpered. "I...." He wiped off the drool when she smirked. "I can change things."
She stood up. "Thank you. Call Dawn tomorrow." Her
attention was caught by something on the tv. The general Dawn had
been sneering at pulled a gun once she turned her back. She nearly
hissed but Dawn caught the bullet and then killed him. She walked
away, leaving it hanging in the air, no longer covered by her hair, a
single drop of blood on end. Natasha wobbled. "We will be
talking with her later." She nodded politely and left, going back
to Stark Labs. It was the fastest way back to New York.
Thankfully she had seen Coulson there to help Dawn.
The producer leaned back, calling in his staff. "Agent
Romanoff...." One of the writers whimpered. "That was her,
yes. She wants us to start at a different point, because there's
still people who try mind control that way, and she said we're very
unfactual about Stark. Which pissed him off enough to talk to his
lawyers." That got another wince. He pointed. "She was
not happy about that."
They looked. "Well, it's not exactly a secret that she's with
Stark's assistant and Hawkeye," the hissing writer noted. "There's
enough clues there for most people to catch one if they want.
Especially if you know Summers."
The producer looked at him. "I forgot you're from the same town."
"I am." He went back to watching. They were replaying
something in the upper corner. "They hurt her mom. They're
going to die. Buffy would do the same thing." He shuddered
at the new generals stomping in to stop things. O'Neill looked
like hell was nibbling on him but he was beating it back by hand.
Dawn was slightly calmer, mostly of the stiff and unemotional
sort. "Any idea?"
"They captured her mother to get the Hulk. Romanoff said she went
back a few minutes at the least." That got a nod. "We need
to rework things." They all nodded and got to work on it.
The classified files they had were a great help. Who knew Stark
hired so many hackers that then got fired?
One of the writers pulled up footage of the last battle. "Who's
that?" he asked, pointing at an apparently high ranking SHIELD female
agent who was kicking ass.
The director looked at the files they had gotten in the mail.
"That may be Agent Hill. She's the top female agent,
second-in-command." He looked at that. "She's good."
"Seeing Agent Romanoff, who we cast isn't feminine enough but she'd do
good for her," another writer said. That got a nod and a note
made. "No Agent Coulson. The one who went to Miami with
"No, or Alexander. I'm wondering what they were handling instead,"
the director said, considering it. He could draft out a few new
ways for the storylines to go. It'd mean some recasting and a bit
of reshooting but they had barely gotten started. They had
anticipated that someone was going to complain sometime.
Dawn got beamed back to the Penthouse at Stark, walking around her niece. "You stay in here."
"He needs me."
"He got given something that won't let him turn back, Callia; you can
help him later. Right now, I really understand that rage."
She walked out there, locking the patio doors. She walked up to
the upper roof deck where the Hulk was smashing lawn chairs. She
walked up to him and patted him. "Mom's fine." He turned to
glare at her. She stared back. "Don't give me that look,
I'll give you food poisoning on purpose, Stepdad." He roared and
she patted him on the arm, sitting down on a chair he hadn't thrown or
damaged yet. She stared at him. "Mom's fine. The army
does not have her." Hulk stared at her then looked around.
"Callia's inside. It's cold and I don't want her exposed to you in
this state. You're a bit too mad for her to calm down.
Especially with whatever they sent you."
Stark came halfway up the stairs, holding Callia. "See, he's fine."
"Grandpa Grr Guy, are you okay?" Callia demanded.
Hulk stared at her. "Callia okay?"
"Callia's fine." She got free and ran over to give him a
hug. "Callia's chilly. She's going to go inside." Hulk
cuddled her. She hugged back. "It'll be okay. You're
going to be okay, Auntie's going to be okay, Grandma's going to be
okay. I'm going to learn how to stomp the army flat." She
got free and grinned. "Let me get warm and I'll come
cuddle." Hulk smiled and patted her on the head. "Be a good
boy and help Auntie calm down." She ran back inside and right
under the throw blanket on the couch.
Stark smiled at Dawn. "Wanna explain how you went back in time?"
"Not a clue," Dawn admitted. "I guess my mental picture had shadows or something."
"Could be. Bruce, we're looking at what they sent and we're
working on an antidote. You two calm each other down. I
turned on the space heaters up here." He went back inside and
locked the screen door again.
Dawn looked at him. "It sucks. It really, truly sucks."
Hulk looked at her. The Bruce part of his brain was growling at this one's bad mood. "Dawn mad."
"Dawn super mad," she said dryly. "Dawn nearly destroyed a
military unit." Hulk groaned and sat on the floor. "There's a
chair, Stepdad, use it?"
He looked at her. "Why Dawn mad?"
"Because the army guys took Mom. Gave her meds to make her
sleep. Which was not a good thing. Dawn had to restart her
mother's heart. Dawn nearly destroyed the whole military unit for
daring to touch her mom." Hulk was staring at her. "Dawn
really got mad and lost her temper. Dawn nearly needed a
containment unit. Or a body bag."
Hulk stared at her. The Bruce part of his mind was in a flurry of
emotions, including anger that even eclipsed the Hulk's.
Mostly he was worried. "Dawn okay?"
"No. No, I'm not okay. I'm probably not going to be
okay. If I didn't know some really good people that were army, I'd
be working against them right now." She shifted and sighed.
"I'll lose my temper, you'll lose yours. We'll both be
Hulk looked at her. "Joyce?" he asked, looking around.
"She'll be back up soon. They said she can fly back home this afternoon."
"The hospital. Joyce collapsed and nearly died thanks to the
medicine they gave her." Her breath caught. "Actually, she
did in the ER but I was talking to her and the doctor so I got her
restarted." Hulk stared at her. "She's awake and
complaining, she's fine." Hulk relaxed. Dawn made herself
relax. She had to calm herself down or she needed to hit her
containment room. She was not in good shape.
They both looked over at the cleared throat. "You couldn't have caught that bullet sooner?" Clint asked.
"I thought he'd let me get farther away and no, I caught it as soon as I heard it."
He nodded. "Thankfully you caught it. Any injury? I
saw the blood drop. Nearly freaked out on the rec room I was in."
She touched her head. "I'm pretty sure I healed it." He
patted the spot next to him and she got up, using the chair to launch
herself up so she could catch the edge of the roof and climb up.
"Watching over us?"
"Over Banner. Doc, I'm here to make sure you don't jump down and
hit the city." Hulk stared at him. "Including the new
sedative. That way you're not dangerous to anyone else."
Hulk smiled and moved next to the heater. He looked at Dawn.
"You okay?" he asked quietly. She shook her head quickly,
starting to lose it. He pulled her closer. He had noticed
she hadn't gotten to the point of crying when they took her mother off
after she had collapsed. She hadn't done it after nearly being
shot. Now, she felt safe enough and it was a huge honor and
responsibility but she was his. This more than most things proved
it. You didn't let down your guard or your emotions around just
anyone. She was sobbing on his shoulder and he held on.
Hulk stared. "Dawn sad."
Clint nodded. "She's really upset, Doc. Let her calm down,
okay?" Hulk nodded and sat in Dawn's chair. Clint spotted a
sniper on another building, focusing on something else. "Dawn, let
me handle something." She sniffled and nodded, pulling back to
wipe at her cheeks. He kissed her and smiled. "Better?"
"Give me three." He turned and fired an arrow at the other sniper,
making him drop his gun and scream as his shoulder was pierced.
He called that in and let the other agents handle that idiot. He
looked at her. She was smiling. He scanned around then
looked at her. "Need to talk?"
She shook her head. "Why do we even protect them?" she asked quietly.
He brushed her cheeks clean. "Because we can't pick and choose or we're evil shits."
She leaned forward, putting her head against his shoulder. "Maybe I want to be an evil bitch then."
"No you don't. We'd definitely have to confine you." She
snorted but sounded happier. He gave her a hug. "Calm
down. It wasn't intentional."
"They acted like it didn't matter. One called Mom a pervert for liking him. Called him and me an abomination."
"I would've killed that one."
"He landed on the ground. I'm not sure if they've taken him for x-rays or not."
He grinned. "You did good kicking his ass in under ten
moves." She smiled weakly and put her head back down. "It'll
be okay and Joyce is going to sue the hell out of the army for
that." She nodded. "So can you."
"I.... I probably did that all wrong."
"You reacted emotionally instead of tactically, though there were plenty
of tactical elements there. Taking them to the white house lawn
was very tactical because they cannot disobey a direct presidential
order." She nodded. "It wasn't bad. Better than just
destroying the whole unit in downtown Manhattan." He looked up
then at her. "Natasha said your phone's probably going off."
"I have no idea where it is," she admitted. "I saw them capture
Mom when she was coming for lunch and I... I so lost it, Clint," she
said quietly. "I went into my full on Hulk."
"I would've done the same thing." She looked at him. He
nodded. "Really. I would've shot them there." She
sighed and nodded, looking down. "Then again, I'm an agent and
you're not." She nodded, leaning on his shoulder again. He
petted over her hair, calling that in. Coulson answered Tara had
her purse and phone, had paid for Dawn's lunch, and was on her way to
the building to bring it to her. That Buffy had written but he had
told her that she didn't have her phone at the moment.
"Thanks." He hung up. "Tara got it." She nodded.
"You did good. It all worked out. No one's permanently
damaged," he soothed. She relaxed. "You always get the
shakes, the nibbles, and tired after using too much magic," he said
quietly. "Which sounds like low blood sugar. Even I can feel
"I'm a bit chilly but I can't eat."
"I get that." He rubbed her back. "I'm a furnace, move
closer." She did. "Fury was throwing a fit that you had to
defend her," he said quietly.
"Welcome." He smiled at her. "You sure you can't even
drink something?" She shook her head, turning a bit green.
"Nerves. Got it." He got her down to the chairs, tucking her
into one with a blanket that was on the stairs. "There, warm up."
He stared at her. "I'm going to check on things. You sit. Get warm."
"I'm going to make cocoa," she decided, getting up.
"I love your mom's recipe," he said with a smile. She smiled back. "Why is hers sweeter?"
"She uses some sort of European chocolate powder. I can't find it so I use Mexican chocolate."
"Hmm. That's why it's a bit different." She nodded.
"Go make cocoa and come back out here." She went down there.
He called in an update. Hulk was totally calm but not able to
change back. He heard why. "Hey, Doc, should Dawn make you
"Cocoa Joyce," he said.
"She'll be back in three hours." Hulk pouted but nodded, settling
in. "You cold? I can get you a blanket or a jacket."
Hulk shook his head. "Okay." He walked inside, finding Dawn
looking at her little package of cocoa making necessities she had
stashed in there. "Got any marshmallows?"
She smiled. "Not the tiny ones that I can see." She added
extra sugar. "It's bittersweet chocolate." He
shrugged. She made it and handed him a mug. Tony walked past
with a bag of marshmallows but the regular sized type. He plopped
one in each cup. "Thanks, Tony."
He looked at her. "We've already told the board to bite us about firing you. Finish relaxing?"
"I'm not sure if I can." She sipped her cocoa. "I'm trying really hard though."
He nodded. "I'd have destroyed them to the last man." He
went outside with a blanket. "Hey, Bruce?" He looked
up. Callia had snuck up and was cuddling him. "Daughter, go
put on a real shirt, a jacket, and pants, plus at least socks," he
ordered. "I don't know how you're out here in just a
leotard." She ran inside. He handed him the bottle.
"Up your nose."
Bruce glared at the bottle. Tony took it and used it. Bruce
swatted at him but he was changing back. "Thanks," he said once he
was mostly normal.
Tony smirked. "Dawn, make your stepfather some too."
"Already going." Callia carefully carried up mugs for each of them
and snuggled in again. Tony covered them with a blanket and put
down an extra space heater unit. He walked back inside.
He punched her on the arm. "They were idiots, Dawn. Pure
idiots." He went down to the board meeting to yell at them some
more. He walked in and slammed the door. "They're all fine,
Banner's down," he told them. Fury was in there, and he
smirked. He looked at the whiners on his company's board.
"If it was your mother, what would you have done?" They shut up
about the whining and made plans to make sure that the Army had nothing
from him for a bit.
Upstairs, Dawn and Clint walked back out, shutting the door so all the
heat didn't flow out. Callia was talking to her slightly green
grandfather. Dawn settled in on the upper roofline with
Clint. Someone walked up behind them. "Hey. I can go
make you cocoa," she offered.
Natasha sat down. "You're not drinking yours." She took it
to sip and handed it back. "One of the writers was at
graduation." Dawn whimpered. "Your sister is seriously
"Tara has her phone," Clint said. He handed Dawn his. She
looked at him. "Not like she doesn't have me in her contact list."
She smiled and wrote her sister, assuring her that their mom was fine,
she was fine and calming down, and everything was all right. Buffy
sent back one demanding to know what happened. Dawn told
her. Then asked if she was in labor since there were key
stutters. Buffy said she might be, the doctor would tell her when
she saw her in a half-hour. She demanded to know more details so
Dawn sighed and sent it as an email. Buffy growled back. She
promised that Joyce was fine and coming home in a few hours.
"Stark sent the private plane to get her," Natasha said. Dawn
smiled and typed that in too. Natasha used her smartphone to get
onto Dawn's livejournal and a few other bulletin boards they monitored
for her. "You should make a statement."
Dawn got into Natasha's phone and sent a simple one. What would
you do if it was your mother they were kidnaping and had nearly
killed? She sent it and handed the phone back. Clint got his
and Dawn finished calming down.
"At least when you were ranting you said you knew some great army
people," Clint said. "That way no one's going to hold it against
all of them." Dawn nodded. "Clay would probably complain
"Probably. And tell me I should go back with a sniper rifle."
"Probably," Natasha agreed, smiling at her. She smoothed Dawn's
hair back behind her ear. "Remember that girly movie your mother
had us watch with her?" Dawn looked at her and nodded.
"She's playing me."
"The one on the CSI show?"
Dawn blinked. "She's not as curvy as you but she's nice."
She hugged her. Natasha hugged her back. "Thank you for not
"There is nothing to nag about, Dawn." She patted her. "You managed a very hard thing by not breaking down there."
"I did it here."
"Which was a good thing. A hysterical daughter would not have had the same impact," Natasha said quietly.
"I couldn't let them see me as weaker," she said quietly. "I don't want Callia to have to learn that."
"She'll need some emotional control so she doesn't smite the board,"
Natasha said dryly. Dawn snorted but nodded. Natasha looked
over at Clint, who nodded he had handled it. She smiled at him
over Dawn's head. "We will handle whatever happens."
"I should go hide again," Dawn complained.
"No, we will not." She kissed her on the forehead.
"Relax. Nothing will come of it. No one would want it to be
their mother so harmed." Dawn nodded and finished relaxing.
"Now, take Clint down and get something to eat?"
"I know. Try. Just something light."
"I'll puke it back up."
"Those are post-battle nerves," she reminded her. "You know how to take care of those."
"I'm not really in the mood for that either," Dawn quipped.
"Then find the gym," Natasha ordered. "Take him with you.
I'll watch over these two until Stark gets out of his meeting or Joyce
is here." Dawn nodded, hopping down and hugging the duo on the
chair. She wandered off. Clint took in the mugs but
followed. Natasha slid down to curl up next to a heater. "I
don't see how Barton doesn't need a jacket sometimes," she said.
Bruce gave her a weak smile. "Are you all right?"
"Her either. I think I lost a few years when I realized they had
shot at her and she had barely caught it." He stiffened.
"She's fine. I checked, the tiny injury is healed." He
stared at her. "It's on the news." He looked around, no tv
up here. She handed him her phone. He found CNN's news site
and replayed the report, shuddering. Natasha had watched it during
traffic pauses for lights and wrecks. She did not want to see it
Bruce made sure Callia couldn't see or hear it because she was
asleep. She didn't need to see that. He nearly lost control
again but Callia shifted and cuddled better. He made himself calm
down. Especially when it showed Dawn reaching through a portal to
help restart her mother's heart and arguing about the do not resuscitate
order applying if she was on machines, not for this. Finally it
showed her being awake and Dawn clearly fighting herself. "Is she
all right, Natasha?" he asked quietly.
"She's attempting to be."
"I saw her break down."
Natasha looked at him. "That level of trust is a good thing and we
needed to be there for her." He nodded, handing back the
phone. She pointed. "It got worse a minute later." He
unpaused it and kept watching while she looked away. He growled,
which woke up the baby. "She caught it."
"Barely," he said.
"They are being court marshaled."
"Good," he said.
Callia blinked at him. "Grandpa Grr Guy, do you need more
cuddles?" she asked. "I give very good ones because I learned from
Auntie Dawn and she learned from Grandma."
"You do give excellent cuddles, Callia," he promised, cuddling her better. It helped him calm back down. "Joyce?"
"Three hours. Stark's private plane is retrieving her." He nodded and squeezed her.
"I'm not a stuffed bear. I'll poop if you squeeze too hard,"
Callia stage whispered in his ear, making him ease up and laugh.
She snuggled in and went back to sleep. She needed a nap.
"Would whatever they were doing work?"
"No. The automatic response to her being attacked that way is to
leave the area," Natasha said. "She would've done it then but she
needed to stay and fight."
He nodded. "It won't hurt her?"
"Sonic pulses would only give her a headache and she's fought through worse."
"I hate that for her."
"We all do," she assured him. He relaxed again and nodded.
They could handle this fall out once he made sure Joyce was all right.
Nick Fury stomped out of the meeting with the idiot Hollywood people who
were annoying him. Joyce held up a cup of coffee and two advil
packets as he walked past her desk. "That won't cut it today,
"I added scotch," she said dryly, giving him a pointed look. "It
could be worse. They could be in your history like they are
"No, then I'd kill." He took them into his office to sit down and
take the headache pills with his doctored coffee. She had a good
hand, just enough to taste but not too overpowering, unfortunately.
Stark strolled up the hall, smiling at Joyce. "Are you good enough
for Callia to come pout at you this weekend? She said she wanted
to about dance classes being canceled for the next few months."
"Why are they canceled?"
"The teacher's pregnant." She smiled and nodded. "I'll tell
her that. We're looking for things with kids her own age."
"She hates ballet and jazz classes. I had her try them, a few different sports, and put her in swimming lessons."
She smiled. "Take her to the park and let her play."
"That could be dangerous."
"You're going to be there. You'll have Happy most likely. How dangerous will it be?"
He nodded. "Good point. I can try that." He went into
the office. "Unless I give them a proper biography...."
"Don't you dare," Fury cut in. "Help us stop this shit?"
Stark nodded. "I'm flattered but not that much and Pepper is
freaking out." He smirked. "But we'll see." He walked
off. They had not hammered out any sort of agreement with the
Hollywood people. They had made their feelings known, had offered
to look over the new scripts, and would get back with them in a
week. That's all they promised. Which was not enough for
them to go forward or backward at the moment.
Though, the one playing Natasha, he was going to suggest play Agent
Hill. She was badass and slightly feminine but not totally.
Also a lot less curvy than Natasha. If you were going to play the
Black Widow, you needed to look more like her. He walked off
thinking. Maybe he could find a suggestion somewhere. He had
an ex that was nicely built but not a good enough actress for it.
Well, more than one. One might make a really great Pepper though.
Dawn looked up Friday, staring at the family grouping. "It's been a
week of hell, I need to get the stress out, and I need to combat the
baby rumors," she announced.
"You have that pretty silver dress that's only shirt length," Joyce
offered with a smile. "It looks like something off a Cosmo cover
and they'll be able to tell there's no bump."
Clint looked over at her. "Don't encourage her to go out in ho
clothes. The cream dress is still floating around somewhere."
"It's in a box," Dawn said dryly. "Anyone going with me?"
Clint nodded. "I think we should."
She smiled. "Cool." She kissed her mom on the cheek then
Bruce and Callia. "You behave. If you do one wrong thing,
you go home."
"Yes, Auntie. I know I'm grounded."
"Good." She patted her on the head, smiling at Natasha. "Coming? Or do you want a night in the tub?"
"I could enjoy a night out," she agreed, standing up and following them
out to the car Dawn had leased. They went home to spiffy up and
Clint stared at Dawn as she came out dressed and putting in her
earrings. "Um.... no," he said, staring at the very short, very
showy dark/bronzy silver dress with the neckline that plunged down to a
scoop around her navel. "No, not going out in that."
She looked then at him. "I look hot."
"Yeah, but Natasha would look hotter in it." Dawn pouted.
"Dresses like that? Bigger chests show better." He turned
her around and gave her a nudge. "Go hand that to her. Find
"Alluring in my closet won't prove I'm not pregnant."
"Find something that'll make me beg."
"It'll do it more on Natasha than you."
"Fine." She walked in there. Natasha came out of the
bathroom and nodded, taking that from Dawn to put on instead of her
choice. Dawn looked in her closet. "I hate that I can say I
have nothing else to wear and enough clothes for two of my sisters."
Natasha laughed and looked, pulling out something. It turned out to be longer. "What is that for?"
"I look like a goddess, it's fully covering, and hey, the geeks can drool." She grinned.
"Yes, they probably will." She put it back and looked at the other
things, shooing the cat that was trying to help out of it. "Go
sleep in the other one, Loki." Dawn put him in the nice nest she
had created for him. Natasha found something.
"Last year's. Someone will say something," she sighed.
"Since when do we care about those sort?"
"Since one nagged Pepper again?" she guessed with a grimace. "Apparently I don't dress like a starlet my age enough."
"Thankfully, no you don't," Clint said from the doorway. "You have tons of clothes."
"All work clothes," Dawn told him. "And a few formal things."
Clint looked at that section then at her. "That silver and gold one?"
"Huh." He closed that closet so the cat couldn't ruin
anything. Dawn got into it again and pulled out something.
"Hell. No." He put it back. If it had to be
clothes-pinned to the hanger, it wasn't being worn.
Natasha laughed and picked out what she wanted Dawn to wear. It
was slim fitting, it was belted to show off her waist. It was
mid-thigh so slightly demure. Dawn gave her a dirty look.
"Fine." Dawn went to a closet she never got into. They had
been on a problem in Brazil way back when they were hiding from the
US. There had been people that had been stealing magically active
teenagers for sex and then sacrificial rituals. They had to taunt
for three days before they figured out Dawn was powerful and could be
taken. It had been hell on their nerves having to let her go club
by herself but it had worked.
Dawn had drawn one and they had gotten most of the children free before
the sacrificial rite. Dawn had gotten clubbing clothes for that
one and they hated to see her in them but it might be necessary.
Dawn pulled out a slim fitting light silver dress that did fantastic
things for her body. It had a built-in bra from the sides.
The plunge was covered with a very fine silk netting lace that hid
nothing. It created a slight shadow to make Dawn look like she had
a bigger chest. The skirt ended about two inches below her
She took it to the bathroom to dress and do a hairlessness check,
because this one did dip low enough to show pubic hair if she had
any. She came out in it, skin colored stockings that hitched to
the dress itself instead of a garter belt that would show, and clearly
skin colored panties. She closed the closet after getting the
silver heels out and sliding into them. A bit of adjustment in her
lipstick and a necklace that had a pendant resting between her
breasts. It definitely drew the eye. Dawn put on drop
earrings and rebrushed her hair.
"I need more ammo," Clint said, going to that shelf in the room's entertainment unit.
"I cannot hide many weapons in this dress," Natasha said, tipping her
head to the side. "It looks better on you now that it did
then. You aren't five pounds underweight." Dawn smirked and
kissed her, earning a moan. "We will club and relieve rumors and
stress." She walked them out. Clint had extra ammo on
him. Plus a few more concealed weapons. "Where are we
"The ones I like or somewhere else?" Dawn asked. She turned to look at them at the elevator.
"That one with the paintings," Clint said. "Their music is
good. I had to do surveillance in there." She grinned and
they got into the elevator with Phil, who sighed in displeasure.
"Relieving stress and rumors, sir."
"I can tell." He looked at Natasha then at Dawn. "Wasn't that one yours?" he asked her.
"Yes." She grinned. "Clint wanted it on Natasha, said it looked better with a larger chest."
"It does," Phil sighed. "I clearly need to do some meditative mind
clearing." He got off on his floor and went home to Xander so he
could help him forget. Xander was sweating. "You saw?"
"Natasha is a fantasy woman for many men," he said. "And yeah, it
does look slightly better on her than on Dawn." He pulled him in
for a kiss. "Let's take these nasty thoughts out of our
heads." He fell to his knees and unzipped Phil, getting right to
the blow job. Phil moaned and wound his fingers in Xander's
hair. He was so damn good at that. Phil nearly fell when he
came but Xander caught him and carried him into the bedroom, tossing him
onto the bed. He took both of their clothes off, grabbed the lube
to spread on himself, then moved closer to get his mate ready for
him. Phil let him because it was good for both of them and
hard-fast-more was their only thoughts for the next little while.
Natasha blushed at Dawn. "Perhaps we'll hide this dress after tonight."
"We can wait while you change," Dawn offered with a grin.
"No, it will be fine." They walked off the elevator and called a
cab. They were nicely nearby so it only took a few minutes to get
to the club. The bouncer gaped in awe at Clint, then at Natasha
and moaned. She winked. They got let in and pulled Dawn in
with them. Dawn went onto the floor, Clint following because he
was a tiny bit possessive. Natasha found her own spot near them
and would join them later. Clint pulled her closer and they danced
around him instead. That was really safer so no one took either
of the girls. Though a few tried to cut in, Clint was not happy
with it. Dawn was his, Natasha was his, and he had that caveman
growl in the back of his head again.
Dawn teased him by turning around to dance against his chest, back to
chest, and smiled at him. "I hear a growl," she teased.
"You do." He pulled Natasha around to let her dance with Dawn
while he got her back. He nodded at a problem that had come in.
Dawn snorted and waved a hand until it caught Natasha's. "Not an
issue." She smirked at her then shifted closer to her wife.
There was that growl again. "He sounds like Hellion," she quipped.
"He does," Natasha agreed, smiling at Clint over Dawn's shoulder. "Someone is getting claimed tonight."
"Hmm. Wonder who." She smirked and teased her then strolled
off to get a drink. The bartender stared at her. "Virgin
fruit slushy please?" She paid and he got her one, making it right
in front of her. "Thank you, dear." She strolled off,
taking it back to the group. They pulled her between them, letting
them take drinks. It was good. It was hot, and then Dawn
spotted someone. "I think we've got chaperones."
Clint looked and nodded. "We do. Huh. Dawn, go tease him?"
"Sure, I can dick tease the boss." She strolled over, taking her
drink with her. Tony blinked a few times, mouth opening.
"Orders, bossman. You're not supposed to be chaperoning."
She winked at Pepper, who giggled. "I like that on you. Even
if it is a bit plain." She finished her drink and put it on the
table. "They need alone time."
"Fine," he said with an evil smirk. "It'll be payback for the halloween party."
She winked. "I'm not that evil tonight. I'm still the good
princess." Pepper cackled and nodded. She strolled off,
letting Tony lead. He was safe. She pointed at a few
problems and he nodded, but she did enjoy dancing with Tony. He
was smooth, he was good at it, and he didn't get handsy like most of the
guys did. She finally let him go back to Pepper a sweaty, needy
mess and strolled off to find someone else. Clint and Natasha were
a bit involved with each other. She could help with that.
They needed alone time too. She found an agent and smirked.
"FBI, here?" she quipped. He moaned. "Why?"
"Surveillance, Miss Summers."
She laughed. "On me?"
"No. You are not my target."
"Good, then you're safe enough to dance with and not destroy." She
pulled him out to distract and tease him. He was sweating a lot
sooner than Tony did. He was fully distracted and kept stammering
at her. "What question is that?" she asked.
"I saw a picture of you in that dress," he said, squeezing his eyes shut
for a moment then looking up at her face. In her heels she was
just an inch taller than he was. "What was that about?"
"Some stupid mother fuckers that were taking kids to sacrifice after raping."
"I'd never let that go on." She smiled and patted him on the
cheek. "Bathrooms are in the back." He swallowed hard and
went that way. She strolled off with a thought at Natasha that she
was giving them space. She got back a 'be careful, be on alert,
and do not switch clubs' from Clint. She said she'd go to her
usual ones, which were safer. He glared but she grinned and did
that. The cab nicely didn't smell on the way over. The
bouncer saw her and whimpered. She smiled. "I'm in a
teasing, flirty mood and they're busy." She shrugged. "Can I
"Yeah," he said, letting her in. The bartender glared then spotted
her and moaned. She was over their quota but hot. Very,
very hot. They knew her and she was never a problem. The
floor was a mass tonight and she found a few partners easily
enough. It was good for her ego. She nearly broke up a few
couples but she turned down anyone that was clearly taken. The few
single guys in there were all sweaty and groping but she stopped most
One was big and polite, so she danced with him. He still had on
his NYPD badge so he was safe. He relaxed and it was good.
When she was done being hot, sweaty, and taunting, she went home.
Clint and Natasha were on the couch making out. She went to
prepare the bed, including putting the weapons where they needed to
go. She checked and sent a thought at Natasha that they were out
of condoms for him. She went to run a bath for them for
later. That was nice of her and by the time they were in the
bedroom, Clint was too hot to care about anything but having her.
Dawn came out and kissed them both, putting down water, some strawberry
juice drink, and some peppermints. Then she strolled off to shower
and change into jammies.
Clint groaned, kissing Natasha again. "She's giving us privacy."
"She is and I could appreciate that tonight. I have not had you
all to myself in a while." He groaned and kissed her again, moving
up some to get a better angle to enter her at. "Clint, condoms?"
"None," he panted, working himself deeper into her. "You're on the
pill and the shot. There's not a chance," he reminded her.
"I'm yours." She smiled and teased his shoulder with her
nails. "Do as you want." Clint growled and flipped her over
to make it a harder ride, which she enjoyed. She was gripping the
headboard and pushing back against him, making him take her where she
wanted to go, at her pace. She was demanding and he always lived
up to her needs and wants. She shivered as he came inside her,
reaching down to alleviate her own need. He beat her to it and
made her nearly shriek. She didn't do it often but he was very
good to her. She finally finished coming and laid down. He
was on her back, panting hard. "She ran us a bath."
"I'd love a bath." He kissed her shoulder then nibbled on
it. "Then I'm going to ride you harder." Natasha smirked but
let them go in there. Dawn was on the couch reading. "When
do you want time with just her?" he asked once they were in the nice,
hot, soothing tub. Dawn had used those crystals again and it
"She has vacation in a week." She took a kiss and leaned her back
against his chest, getting comfortable. "I was going to manipulate
my way into going with them."
"Leaving me here alone with my hand?" he quipped.
"Yes, so that you two can have an explosive night when she gets
back." Clint groaned and nodded, kissing her neck. "Being
uncovered felt different."
"It does," he agreed. "Much more intimate to share body fluids."
She shivered and snuggled in better. "There is no harm in a few now and then."
He kissed her ear. "I'd love for it to be the norm, not the exception." She looked at him. "I would."
She kissed him. "We'll see." He grinned and cuddled her
better. It was relaxing, even if he was stroking over her stomach
with his fingertips. She swatted his hand but he laughed in that
dark, rich sound that made her shiver. She shifted and sat on his
lap for a proper kiss, making him clutch her and pull her closer.
"Still feeling a bit possessive."
"I could enjoy that harder ride you promised me."
He smirked. "All yours, Nat." He started by teasing
her. She loved to be teased. She wouldn't admit it but it
got her hot and wet faster than anything. He ended up pulling them
out and to the shower to wash off the herbal crystals, then back to the
bed, which had been remade. Their weapons were where they should
be, they both checked, and it was fantastic. Natasha got loud,
more so than Dawn did, and just let it all go for him.
Dawn walked into work the next day and smiled at the guards. "Problems?" she asked at the scowl.
"You were dancing with the boss."
"They needed a night together. He was safe and not going to kidnap
my pretty ass." They laughed but let her log in and head
upstairs. "Morning, Pepper."
"Morning," she squeaked.
Dawn closed the office door for her. "Let me know when you're ready for me to come take notes."
"Sure," she said, still sounding a bit squeaky.
Dawn got into her desk to straighten things up, because Andrew had been
looking for her peppermint stash again, and settled in to go over the
interoffice mail and other things. Tony walked up the hall and she
frowned then at the door then at him. "Huh, didn't know she did
"Of course she does," he said dryly, handing her a newspaper. "I'm pretty sure they realize you're not pregnant now."
"No, I wasn't." She smiled and handed it back. "He's NYPD and at the club I usually hit."
"Why did you leave them?"
"They needed alone time."
He nodded. "Got it. That's a necessity with any trio I guess." He looked at the office door. "Squeaky?"
"Then it's a good day." He walked off again.
Dawn popped her neck and got back to work. Sleeping on the couch always gave her a crick in her neck.
Natasha strolled off the elevator. "Where is he this time?"
"Headed down to the tinkering lab or to check on my geeks." She grinned. "You okay?"
"I'm very good." She took a fast kiss. "You could have joined us."
"As he said, we all need alone time within the group." She stared at her. "I've been hogging him."
Natasha smiled. "We both hog you." Dawn blushed. "I'm going on your vacation with you and her."
"Okay. If you want." She smiled. "I'm bringing the blue bikini and a few others."
Natasha nodded. "Very good for tanning."
"I wasn't expecting anything else, dear."
"You will get it," she promised, strolling off. Her gait was a bit
off this morning, she was a bit sore, but it was good. Dawn was
watching her walk and leering mentally, she could feel it. So
could Clint, who had to shut them out. He had the idiot rookie
agents again today.
Dawn offered to spar with them. Clint promised her she could kick
their butts and he'd bring them over later to break them. Dawn
smirked and got back to work, closing them both out of her mind.
Jonathan came up and stared at her. "My girlfriend wants to know where you found that dress of male damnation?"
"Brasilia." She smiled. "A few years back."
He sighed. "I'll let her know there's no way we can find it up
here." He strolled off. "You made the girls pant and think
lesbian things, Dawn."
She cackled. "Sorry, Johno."
"We're not." He grinned and went back to his lab. He walked
in. "They were in Brazil." His girlfriend Patty pouted at
him. "She was so hot and didn't get any. Clint was all on
Natasha by the way she's walking." Andrew moaned. "So
apparently Dawn's getting it later." They shared a smirk. It
was fun watching them go at it sometimes.
"I need to go to the gym," MB, Andrew's new wife, said.
Andrew looked at her and shook his head. "Don't you dare."
She blushed. "I like you the way you are and there's no way you
can compete with Dawn. It's like us competing against Stark as
heros." She took a kiss, which he enjoyed, then the girls went to
their own labs to get back to work. He sighed. "I so need to
figure out how to do more than that."
"Talk to Tony or Clint," Jonathan quipped. "They'd know. Phil apparently likes Xander a whole lot too."
He nodded, going to talk to Tony about that. Clint was a bit scary
because he was the possessive, alpha male sort. Stark, not as
alpha in the obvious ways. He sat down next to Tony. "How do
I do more than kiss and fondle her?"
Tony looked around to make sure Callia wasn't in there with them then
looked at him. "You want me to teach you sex ed or just give you
"Clint suggested oral sex and gave me a link. It looked like fun
but she got all embarrassed and blushy." Callia walked in.
He hugged her. "Can you go talk to MB about not having babies?"
"We need more babies."
Andrew smiled. "When you're a teenager you can babysit but no babies this year."
"I can see that. You need time to set up the house, like the
dollies and GI Joe do." She skipped off to talk to MB, who she
adored. If her geeks had to marry, they had picked nice girls at
Tony smirked. "Smooth. Is she on something?"
"No!" he complained. "She's never even thought about drugs. Why would you ask that?"
Tony patted him. "I meant birth control."
Tony texted Dawn, who told him she'd ask her. "Okay, first, we're
going to make sure you know what things are." He took him downtown
to Times Square and a favorite kink shop he liked to frequent. He
showed him all sorts of things and explained the uses. Including
how things like oral sex worked with the fake pussies they had in
boxes. Andrew was bright red but taking notes. It was the
sort of geek he was. The shop boy was giving them odd looks.
The clerk smiled and pointed. "Newby kit?"
Tony took him to look at it and had to explain why there were fuzzy
handcuffs. But Andrew now had ideas and knew what he was
doing. He'd have to make sure Jonathan didn't need the same
talk. He handed the junior geek to his wife at lunch, and gave
them permission to work over tonight so they had a long one.
Andrew took her up to their shared suite and put some of the new ideas
into practice. Tony went back to his lab happier.
Dawn had left him a note saying she had told MB that they could do the
birth control shot, patch, and pill in the infirmary in case she needed
it, and that he had been showing Andrew what a condom was for.
That Patty liked porn apparently, and so did Jonathan, so they were a
bit more worldly and knew what things were, but hadn't went there
yet. So it was good for him. He was a great mentor.
Clint was stretched out on the couch when the girls got home. He
had his present favorite bow being cleaned in his lap and some music on
to hum to. Dawn leaned down to kiss him. He smirked.
"Thank you for last night."
"You guys need some alone time. I've been hogging you."
He smirked. "No you haven't. We've been hogging you between
us." He took another kiss. "Strip for me?" She quirked
up an eyebrow. "Natasha, don't you think she should strip?"
"I believe she should," she agreed, sitting down to cross her legs, the
top foot wiggling with the music. "You even have nice music on for
Dawn blushed. "I'm not good at this part."
"So?" Clint offered. He shrugged and put his bow aside.
"Strip for us, Dawn." She blushed but pulled down her hair,
shaking it out. Then she kicked off her shoes. "No, I like
those," he promised.
She put them back on and worked on the buttons of her shirt, making him
lean back again and stare at her. She wasn't being overly
tempting. She got the plain, cream shirt off and tossed it into a
chair. She turned to undo the zipper of her skirt and push it
down, leaving it a puddle of cloth on the floor, then she turned back
around to tease herself. He nodded he liked that and tipped his
head to the side. She teased her stomach then up to her bra clasp,
it was a front hook.
She undid it and let it hang, stroking over her breasts and teasing her
nipples through the fabric. He was getting to the point of
pouncing. She shifted again and came over to kiss Natasha before
undoing her garter straps and pushing the panties down on one
side. It showed just a hint of the hair she had left because
that's what Clint liked. She moved over to kiss him and pushed
them off all the way, then went back to slowly teasing herself.
He plucked off the bra and tossed it then pulled her down to kiss her
better. "I want to go naked with you like I did Natasha last
night," he said against her ear. "Any comments?" She moaned
and kissed him. "Pills and all that?"
"I'm good. Got the shot earlier this week."
He smiled. "Good." He spanked her once. "Get up and
dance for me, Dawn?" She did that, making him strip off his
sleeveless t-shirt and undo his pants button and zipper. Dawn was a
great club tease. "Who was that guy?"
"Safe then. The other one at the first club?"
"Hmm. Safe enough." He made turn around motions and she did,
letting him see her shake her backside. Then she turned back
around. The garter belt came off. The stockings still stayed
up, they were a bit tight at the top. He smiled. "Like that
even more. More skin to tease." He motioned her
closer. "Lap dance for me?" he suggested.
She grinned down at him and walked over to change the music then came
back. It was one of his favorite CD's and she liked it. It
was good to dance to. She was dancing in front of his knees,
barely brushing them. "Did you need a lap dance?"
"I definitely do." His thighs were drifting apart and he was
stroking his stomach. Dawn licked her lips and leaned down to blow
a kiss at his lips, casually brushing her breasts against his
thigh. He smiled at that move but she stood back up and went back
to dancing for him. She finally moved closer, straddling his
thighs, giving him the brushing pressure he wanted. He pulled her closer
to kiss, holding her up by her nicely rounded butt.
"No butt sex without a condom, I don't want you to get a UTI," she said
in his ear, earning a shiver and a nod. She smiled at him.
"I was taught to only go fully naked with you when we were totally
serious, committed, and Mom had made sure he was better than anything
she or my sister ever dated."
"If I had known that, I would've quit buying them months ago." She
grinned and sat down on his cock, not letting it pierce her, but on top
of it. It was trapped in her folds and getting damp. He
slid a few times, which was good and teased both of them. He stood
up and carried her into the bedroom, taking the shoes off. The
cat ran from them but that was normal. Loki hated them having
sex. He stripped off his jeans and boxers, then slowly
peeled her stockings off and tossed them aside. "You sure?"
"Are you? I consider that a really big commitment step."
"I'm already yours," he reminded her, kissing her. He leaned down,
taking control of everything. Dawn's body was not a secret to
him, he knew where every single hot spot, every spot that made her
twitch or moan, and every entrance key he had to get her to let him into
her body. He started with a touching tease on her shoulders but
she wiggled so he moved down. "Day at work bad?" he guessed.
"Some tension. Pepper's in *that* stage. I had to keep hiding from her squeaky noises."
He kissed her. "Don't want to hear about Pepper
masturbating. It's hot but not as hot as you." He kissed her
again and moved down to nibble on her shoulders. A simple
shoulder massage and she was nearly puddled underneath him. He
teased a breast, which she had learned to enjoy. Then he moved
lower. He loved oral sex with Dawn. She made fantastic
noises. Today was no exception and Natasha came in to hand him a
gag then left them alone. "I don't care if you get loud. I
love it." He smirked and went back to making her messy and
cleaning it up.
"Clint!" she begged. "Please!"
"Not time yet."
She moaned and wiggled some. "Please? Need to come."
"I know you will. Be patient." She whimpered and
writhed. He was enjoying it. One final orgasm and he came up
to slide into her, making her hiss and claw at his arms. "Better
"So much better this way," she moaned. "Oh, Goddess, so much better this way."
He smiled. "I like it too." He kissed her. "Come for
me, Dawn, so I can make you go off one last time?" She nodded and
clutched his shoulders, wrapping her legs around his waist. She
was a bit hesitant. "Nothing's changed, baby. Still
yours." She nodded and tried to flip them over. He
smirked. "Nope, not this time. Next time." He thrust
in hard, making her squeal. It was good to hear. He was
quiet, had learned that a long time ago. Natasha was usually
quiet, unless he got her very worked up. Dawn wasn't and he loved
that about her. She was a mass of noise that just made him get
warmer and warmer. He finally came and brought her across, making
her go limp and pant. He smirked. "Did you fake that one?"
"No fluttery feelings."
"Dear, those muscles are limp and not getting back up for anything," she
quipped. He groaned and pulled out to tease them with a
finger. She laid there and watched him. "See?"
"I do see. Are you sprained?" he teased.
"No. They'll have some recovery and teasing time then come back up." She kissed him. "The same as yours will."
He laughed and hugged her. "Definitely need recovery time tonight. I haven't been this happy since I was fourteen."
She kissed him. "I bet you were hell in bed even then."
He smirked. "Yes, I was." She snuggled against him. He enjoyed it and it was good. Relaxing.
Andrew gave Dawn a shrewd look the next morning. She wasn't really
sitting right. Like she was slumped at the hips but trying to
appear upright. "If he's doing it so hard you're in pain, then I
need to have a talk with him, probably from my robotic battle suit but
definitely a talk with him."
She smiled. "Normal sex can make you sore too, Andrew."
"Uh-huh." He stared at her. "If I'm like your brother I should threaten him."
She laughed. "I think you tried that once."
"I think I did too. MB's blushing harder than ever."
"She's probably having her cycle," she said dryly.
"Oh!" He nodded and left to talk to Patty and MB. He was
worried about Dawn. Well, they were busy and Jonathan was doing an
interview with Warren's new therapist to help him get his mind back to
the right spot. So maybe he'd go talk to Clint Barton
himself. He headed for his storage area but Phil Coulson caught
him and walked him off. "He made it so she can't sit.
Again!" he complained. "I was only going to talk to him."
"I'm sure you were but he's getting ready for a new mission,
Andrew. I'll talk to him for you. Dawn's like my sister
Andrew pouted. "I don't want her hurt."
"He'd never really hurt her. He just got too enthusiastic. Some day you will too and you'll baby MB."
"He's not babying her."
"He is but he's doing it long distance today." He stared at
him. "There's no reason to pull out the battle suits."
Andrew pouted but nodded, huffing off. He walked up to check on
Dawn. He didn't want to know what SHIELD would do to Andrew if he
tried to attack Clint. Probably sic Thor on the battle suited
genius. Which would cause problems with Stark and Dawn.
He found her leaned back in her chair, eyes moving and open, and clearly
not there. He pushed his phone for Stark's speed dial.
"Vision. Dawn." He hung up and got what he'd need. He
texted Maria Hill to see if she knew what was going on. Because if
they were connected, Barton or Romanoff would be getting it too.
Xander appeared, staring at her. "She doesn't have apocalypse
visions," he said quietly. "It's always about personal things for
her." He disappeared to check on them. Medical was checking
on Natasha. "Don't," he ordered. "Dawn's having a vision and
broadcasting." They backed off. Coulson had put in
protocols for people having visions. "She'll need something for
the migraine," he said more quietly. They nodded and got an IV
prepared. He looked around. "Where's Barton?"
"Can't find him," Hill noted.
Xander concentrated and took one of the medics with him to check on
him. He wasn't having as much of a link this time. He got
the IV started, making Clint relax. He checked, Dawn was still
having it. He flashed back to Natasha to start the IV since none
of them dared to touch her. She moaned and tried to move.
"Shh, I've got you," Xander said in her ear. "It's a vision,
Natasha. It's a preview." Natasha nodded slightly.
"Help her. Don't fight it. It'll cause brain damage if you
fight them." She nodded slightly again. He went back to help
move Barton out of his spot. He and the medic appeared with
Barton between them. He was groaning and holding his head.
Xander touched his forehead to see what it was, wincing. "She only
has personal major event ones," he said quietly. Clint barely
opened his eyes to glare at him. "Not my fault."
"No, but we have to stop that urge," he said very quietly.
"She's not mine," he pointed out. "What did you expect her to do? What did she do last time?"
Clint winced. "Don't remind me." He put his head back down. "Can I have a sledgehammer to cave in my skull?"
"Sorry but I can start the painkiller, Agent Barton," the medic said,
starting that. He got rolled off. They got Natasha moving.
Xander went back to Stark tower, finding their medics there with
Dawn. "They got it mirrored." Phil nodded, following Dawn
down to the infirmary. Xander followed. "How many of these
has she had?"
Phil shook his head. "Maybe four."
"We need to check for the brain changes Cordy had," he said
quietly. Phil stiffened but nodded, adding that request. The
doctor called up that file, but didn't have it. He accessed the
one from SHIELD and she winced, taking her to a CT.
"Okay, what the actual fuck?" Tony demanded, staring at them.
"Vision," Xander said. "Barton's next mission is going to go
clusterfuck and she's going to need to step in to save his ass, which
he's not going to like."
Tony's eye had a twitch most people had never seen. Pepper had
only seen it a few times. She knew it meant to get out of the
way. "Phil?" she suggested. He followed her back to the CT
Tony stared at Xander. "The CT?"
"Cordelia. Remember her?"
"Gifted with visions by the irish mother fucker when he died?"
"Remember that part," Tony said, clearly ready to lose his temper.
"She died from them, kind of." Tony sucked in a breath. "It
caused extreme brain changes. Human brains can't always take the
stress of visions. Dawn's not fully human but you can track
vision-related changes early on."
Tony nodded slowly. "That explains the CT. She's had four,
right?" Xander nodded but shrugged. "So we're looking to
make sure it's not going to fry her brain?"
"While I'm writing one of the more magical Xander's to see if there's
anything we can give her to block out visions that won't make her a
thorazine zombie. Because I don't think they'd like to watch her
take heroin all that often and that's the only street drug I know that
can block visions and other powers."
"Good to know," Tony said bitterly. "Why did she have this one?"
"Each of us gets different types. I get full blown apocalypse
battles." Tony shuddered. "Dawn gets personal ones, things
that can go hellishly wrong with her made and actual family." He
stared at him. "She had one about you once, one of them involved
an accident that Pepper was going to have."
"I remember that one."
"This one, Barton's next mission is going to go clusterfuck. Her
going to help save his dumb ass is going to start the mother of all
fights and it looked like a divorce." Tony winced. "But he
"Okay," Tony decided. "Anything else we know?"
"They were apparently open enough that the other two saw it too," Phil
said, coming back out. "There's a very minute change. It's
nothing like what Cordelia had." Xander relaxed and nodded.
"Cordelia's came from the Powers That Be, right?" Xander nodded
more quickly. "Then Dawn's probably come from a less powerful
source or she has them naturally as a gift."
"That's considered a gift?" Tony demanded.
"Forewarned is forearmed," Xander said bitterly. "I didn't have
one until I lost my eye and my powers suddenly rebalanced on me."
"You were showing temporal lobe damage the last time you were on
Atlantis, after you broke out," Phil said quietly. Xander looked
at him. He nodded. "Lesser than Cordelia's. I'm not
sure if it got healed or not, Xander."
"So we need to find something to block those out," Tony said.
"If it's important she'd probably keep them," Xander said. "If it
was trivial things or she was getting every single semi-dangerous demon
attack to tell a hero, then she'd probably ask to have them eased."
Tony nodded. "What about driving?"
Xander shrugged. "I don't know. Angel tried to get me to
give up driving when I started to have them. He did talk Cordelia
into not driving when hers got worse."
"By looking genetically we're fairly certain Doyle only activated her
natural gift as a seer," Phil said. He rubbed his left ear to ease
the ache in it. The doctor had grabbed him by it. "The
source sending it with pain to make sure they didn't think it was
daydreams and her being fully human were the reasons it changed her so
much. We have someone looking over her medical records and that of
a few others to see if there's others who have the same sort of
problem. We were hoping for something to ease the problems or
block them off."
Xander shrugged. "Visions can run in my family. I'm not sure if they are or not."
"Yours are hereditary. I had your file from Atlantis sent to
him. He identified the same gene sequence that Cordelia had, which
was twisted by the Hellmouth's power. It would've stayed latent
in both of you if it hadn't been activated by powers or Powers."
"Are Dawn's hereditary?" Tony asked.
"Possibly. I haven't had her genome scan sent over. I wasn't
about to risk that because of who and what she is. She had been
getting minor flashes, not major, explicit visions like this one."
Tony nodded. "We have geneticists on staff."
"I know. One of them works with him part of the time. It's his father."
Tony smirked. "I'll have him work on Dawn's." He went into
the CT room but got sent out because of his arc reactor. "Fine."
"When we know you will," Dr. Pigalli noted, then slammed the door.
Xander looked at Phil. "Want here or there?"
"There. You baby Dawn." Xander took him back to SHIELD so
they didn't realize he had powers then went back. He walked into
the infirmary. Fury was living up to his name again.
"No cognitive or physical changes," the doctor said. "How did Dawn do that?"
"She needs to keep her mind to herself," Fury complained, glaring at Phil.
"It was about Barton's next mission, sir." Fury slumped.
"Alexander read it from their minds. Said it was going to be a
clusterfuck as he put it." Fury stomped off. He walked over
to ease the pain they were feeling. Clint barely opened his eyes
to stare at him. "They're checking Dawn over."
"She's never going to get another one again," he vowed.
"You can't promise that. Nor can I or Alexander," he said
quietly. "If we could, we'd take them for her." Clint nodded
and swallowed. "Want some water?"
"Dawn can hear them and she's scared," Natasha said. Phil sent a
thought at Dawn, calming her down. "Thank you." She put a
hand on her forehead. "How has she lived through these?"
"This was her fourth real one," Phil said quietly. "Xander's had
dozens but all his are battle ones. Usually apocalypse or higher,
"There has to be something we can give her to block them off," Clint said.
"Xander offered the idea of heroin," Phil said. They both glared
at him and so did the doctors. "He said that's the only street
drug he knows that can block powers." He looked at them.
"Comparing her to Cordelia Chase's files, she's barely got any changes
caused by them."
Clint made himself sit up. "No, there's no more. Even if I
have to go beat the ass of some higher power, no way in hell."
Natasha nodded. "Ditto when I can move." Phil adjusted her
IV, making her relax. "I needed less pain medicine, not more."
"Hush," he told her. "Dawn has migraine medicine for a reason
beyond stretching her boundaries." He patted her on the
wrist. "Rest." He looked at Clint. "You, lay back
"I need to check on her."
"She's in the CT at Stark Tower." Clint stared. "Once you're
better." Clint nodded, pulling his IV. "I said better, not
"I can do this shit there." He stood up and wobbled. "Please?"
"I'm up," Natasha moaned, sitting up holding her head. "I hope I never have another of those."
"She had one before this but after you three bonded," Phil said quietly.
"I had some nightmares from that."
"We weren't involved in that one," Clint said. "How can you tell how much was her low self esteem?"
"I'm not sure," he admitted. "It may twist some of it, Barton. I don't know how to tell."
"Some of it was more twinkly than the rest," Natasha said. "Most
of it was like watching tv in your mind, but there were twinkly parts,
including that whole fight thing."
"Then that must be her interpretation," Clint decided. He
carefully moved away from the bed. "Coulson, you're driving."
"Yes I am." Natasha checked herself out and they headed
over. The SHIELD infirmary team sent Dr. Pigalli's team notes so
they could stick them on IV drips over there. Maybe it would help
Stark found his geneticist in his lab, humming at a copy of a
genome. "Hey." The guy flinched and looked around before
removing it. "I know that's Dawn's. I know you've been
fascinated with Dawn. Your lucky day just happened."
"Is she suffering from some chromosomal anomaly?"
"No. She's suffering from visions." The other scientist
stiffened, staring at him. "Just had her fourth one, which she
shared with her spouses."
"Damn. We noticed they could look at each other and seemed to hold conversations."
Tony nodded. "That was during the whole mind control thing to help
each other. It will not get out. Not in the least."
"I've been secretly looking hers over but I hadn't evaluated it against what my father was doing."
"Do so. Find some way to block it if possible. Or flip it off except in horrible emergencies. Whatever."
"I can do that. I know he got Alexander's genome. Comparing it against Thor's is driving him nuts."
"Loki was adopted," Tony said dryly.
"Beyond that. It's like he's got a mixed sample as DNA."
Tony thought at Xander, who joined him with Phil. "Talk to him about your genetics."
Xander looked at him, getting the examples flashed. "That's the
birthing gifts and blessings. They can change some things."
Tony scowled. "Like if you're blessed to be really strong and fast by another god as a gift, it'll increase that skill?"
Xander nodded. "Only a few pantheons do that. Most don't,
consider it tampering. We do, the Greeks do, the Egyptians used
to. I have some blessing from pantheons that the current ones
think are mythical and never existed. That's what they found when
Odin had Hera help me weed out some of the mermaid and hellmouth
taint." He went to his elemental form. "All the flashing
things are gifts. Though I have no idea why I'm blue. I used
to be a more twinkly, silver one." Phil coughed. "That
would probably do it, yeah." He returned to human. "I used
to show gifts from thirteen pantheons, three of which couldn't be
identified. Something happened recently."
"Was it where Callia locked you guys in that containment cell?" Tony guessed.
"That preceded the event that changed his elemental look," Phil said. Tony stared at him. "Not sharing, Stark."
"It might be important and could it change his DNA more?" the geneticist asked.
Xander and Phil nodded. Xander showed Tony the mirror of what
happened. Tony shivered but nodded. "Yes, it probably did.
His DNA might read more like Coulson's now." He handed it
over. "Take another swab and try." He did that.
"Xander, can we put you both in a CT to compare?"
"Sure," Xander decided. "If it'll help him come up with a way to block them from Dawnie."
"Thank you," the other scientist said with a happy grin. "Mr.
Stark, her genomic scan will not get out at all. I'll handle that
"Thank you. And quit crushing on her?"
"I'm aware of why that's a bad idea now."
"They're in the infirmary too," Phil admitted.
"If they have that fight anyway, there's going to be a dead sniper," Xander quipped.
"Please don't threaten my sniper, Xander," Phil chided.
"Yours?" Tony asked dryly.
"I am the agent overseeing the Avengers Initiative."
"I thought you meant in the other sense," Tony said sarcastically.
"No one's put a shrine up to me yet, Stark. Though I wouldn't
mind. The unattached prayers reach my ears anyway. Maybe if I
had a shrine I'd get more than the 'oh god please' prayers."
"I liked you better without a sense of humor, Coulson," Tony complained.
"Who's kidding?" Xander asked. "I got plenty of the 'oh god'
prayers, Stark. Any protector, any sort of prayer, including those
in bed, that didn't have a destination attached."
"So you're the dead letter office for prayers?" Tony quipped to hide that revelation bothered him.
"Quite," Phil said dryly, staring at him. "Thankfully they can
mostly be blocked off." He walked off. "We can go to the
infirmary so you can get the current scan as well," he told the
geneticist. Who all but ran after him.
Xander smirked at Tony. "Yeah, those too."
"Pray to a certain one and they get it. Send up a random one and
the one over your life, or the ones over your life, get it. You
lucky guy you, the one over heros thinks it's a good thing when you get
laid often." He walked off looking more smug.
"I'll start dedicating those to someone specific," he complained,
following them. They had Dawn's CT up to look at. "What's
the dark spot?" he asked, pointing at it. "That's not normal."
"The bruise from the battle in Sunnydale, from all the power," Phil said
quietly. Tony shuddered. "It's probably permanent but
doesn't cause any other problems, Stark. Worry about the tiny bit
of swelling and the discolored blotches."
"I see those. Is that the vision damage?" Xander
nodded. "It looks bad." The geneticist got into his files to
pull one up, making Tony shudder. "Cordelia's?"
"Yeah," Xander said. "That's hers after a year of visions.
About twenty, twenty-five of them." Tony shuddered again.
"Dawn's not showing the same level of relative damage but it's going to
eventually get there. She's gaining damage at maybe third-speed of
"Then we have to stop them," Tony decided.
Xander looked at him. "That could mean stopping her magic.
Are you willing to go that far since that could kill her?"
"No," Tony sighed. "Anything that might help?" he asked his geek.
"We're working on hypothesis. Including one that there has to be a medicine that can lower it."
"Heroin," Xander said bluntly. "It blocks out all natural gifts,
including empathy and magic." He pointed. "That's her
"Do we know why it works?" Tony asked. "Can we mimic the effect on the brain without the drug itself?"
"No idea," Xander admitted. "Not my field of expertise. I'd
ask John. He did a lot of research into them a few generations
back when the girlfriend he really wanted had them. Then Aisha got
"Okay," Tony said. "I can put you with Colonel Sheppard," he told his geek.
John cleared his throat. "It's an odd fact that those who are in
training for something strenuous, like the olympics, will get dream
visions but not outright daytime full visions," he said. "They can
be just as harmful but nicer to live through." Xander
nodded. "Warriors in full battles never get visions."
"Wrong," Xander said. "I had two during the invasion. That's why I stopped to catch my breath."
"Huh. Okay, human ones don't," John said. "Or so the ancient
sources I saw said. So it's possible that something about the
great exertion on the body can block the receptors. I'm not sure."
The geneticist nodded. "Okay," he said. "That's not a bad
idea and we know how heroin infects the brain so we can see if those
responses are similar." He gathered the notes. "I'll get
yours from my father, Alexander. The new one can be compared with
the old one."
"They're merged now," John said. "He and Coulson probably read like fraternal twins."
"I can check that," the geneticist said happily and left, taking John with him to talk to.
Tony looked at them. "Anything we can do to ease that?"
"Napping helps," Xander said. "Like her overuse headaches, only time and stuff for migraines."
"I gave Agent Barton some adrenaline just now," Dr. Pigalli's nurse
said. "She overheard and said to try it on him with his
permission. It has helped the pain and the response time he's got
"That's good to know," Phil agreed. "Find us an effective way of
dealing with them." She nodded, leaving them be. "There's a
few others that they found the markers in," he told Stark when he got
stared at. "Including in Thor and Agent Sitwell."
"Sitwell's got a latent talent somewhere," Xander said. "I can almost feel it off him."
"His child will probably have an active one. Tara told him
that." Stark shuddered and walked off. He looked at
Xander. "We can help them talk."
"We can," he agreed. "You popped over earlier."
"Dawn was a bit sore this morning and Andrew took offense at
that." He grinned slightly. "He was going to get out the
battle suit and stomp on Barton until he apologized for making her
"Dawn would've stomped right back," Xander said dryly.
"Probably, yes." They went to check on Dawn and her spouses.
Clint was awake and sitting up. "The adrenaline help?"
"For now but I can feel a crash coming hard later," he said, staring at them. "Natasha didn't react that much."
"She was hit harder," Xander said. "You were only half as deep as
they were." Clint nodded at that. "Now what? And I'm
asking as a nosy big brother who will destroy you."
Clint stared at him. "We don't have many rules but I think we need to start one."
Xander patted him on the cheek with a smirk. "You were nearly
suicidal and she was right to point it out," he said quietly. "The
fact that you yelled because she saved your ass was a bad thing."
Clint nodded, getting free. "I understand why. We'd never
fight like that. I'd go retreat and think first, Xander."
"Good. Because your destruction would be certain if you two had
that sort of fight." He stared at him. "If you think Andrew
can't, you can be sure I can and will."
"Xander, quit threatening my sniper," Phil said impatiently.
Xander looked at him. "Family over coworkers, dear."
"Hush." He looked at Clint. "I'm sure you two will work it
out in a way that won't leave her sobbing on our shoulders." He
walked Xander off.
Clint looked at Natasha, who was almost smiling. Then at Dawn, who
was asleep. Natasha was facing him but Dawn was on her other
side, facing away. Clint got up and walked over, sitting beside
her cot. "Hey." Dawn moaned and held her head. "I
know. Can we try that shot thing?"
"Hasn't helped her yet," the nurse said. "Let her sleep.
Whatever you're going to fight about can wait, Agent Barton."
"Fine." He got comfortable in his chair, watching Dawn
sleep. Natasha was up first, though the pinched look on her face
showed she was still in pain. She opened up their link and showed
him what she had gotten that he hadn't. Yeah, that mission had
went totally wrong and he had sacrifice played it to get what they
needed done. Without an exit strategy. Dawn had solved the
need for an exit strategy. He had gotten mad about that, which he
might but he'd cool off on the way home.
Then they had the totally illogical fight that clearly came from her
mind instead of the vision. Natasha had seen what was underneath
it, basically him moving out. That was not going to happen.
So they had to deal with it, make sure his next mission went picture
perfect so Dawn wouldn't worry, and then make sure they were more solid
and Dawn couldn't come help on a mission. Which was nearly
impossible but that's what sort of missions they sent him and Natasha
Natasha shook her head, showing him something else. That was
bad. Bad on many levels. So bad on too many levels
really. He didn't like sacrifice plays and he surely didn't want
to be carved up by one. Interrogation training was nothing on the
real thing, he'd had enough of them to know that, but that one wasn't an
interrogation, it was for fun. One guy wanting to be the friendly
neighborhood butcher that hadn't been able to get the credit to open a
shop. Who knew the backwoods of Belarus had so many regulations to
jump through to be a butcher, or so the guy had told him while he was
cutting him up. Dawn interfering had saved him, and the few rookie
agents with him.
He stared over at Natasha, who shrugged. She had no idea how to
handle this without that fight. The fact that Dawn had a true
vision about the mission and then the fight afterward got added in meant
that something really had to be done. She was sure it was being
reassigned and they could tell the overseeing agent so they could handle
it. She blinked at the table next to her cot, finding her
phone. Tony handed over his tablet, letting her type out a
message. He sent it for her and then she let herself drift off
again. This headache was worse than any she'd ever had.
Tony watched Barton stare and Natasha try to sleep it off. "Scan
them too," he told the nurse. "In case some of the damage spread."
"They won't let us. We suggested it," the nurse said quietly.
"Barton, Romanoff, CT," Tony ordered. "So we can make sure it
didn't cause you two damage." They both glared at him.
"Yay. Who knows what can pass around and you both got hit pretty
hard." He pointed. "Now. Shouldn't take more than ten
minutes then you can come back to glare or rest." They nodded and
got taken in there. During it Dawn moaned, holding her head.
"Hey," he said, moving beside her bed. "I'm right here."
She whimpered, shaking her head. "They're in the CT to make sure
the vision didn't hurt them. They both saw it." He smoothed
back her sweaty hair. "Want some water?"
"Need to take it down," she mumbled.
He opened the word processing program on his tablet and let her do
that. When she was done she went limp again. Tony scanned
over it then sent half of it, the important half, to SHIELD. They
didn't need to know about marital spats. Even the dissolving the
union kind. He got back a 'thanks' from Maria Hill. He made
sure she had Natasha's and she said she did. They were handling it
and to tell Barton he was excused from missions, but they were going to
be doing a lot of scans soon. Tony sent over they were doing a CT
right now. She said it wouldn't save others but they needed
copies. He said he'd talk to Coulson about it.
She said that was fine and he put his tablet back into his pocket.
Dawn was fitful but trying to sleep. He turned up her IV drip
rate so she got more pain medicine, which made her pass back out.
The nurse scowled. He shrugged. She nodded it was fine and
pointed at him to go. He shook his head. When the other two
came out he left them to recover together. He ran into Andrew
pacing, looking really worried. "It was a vision, 'Drew."
He looked at him. "I heard they killed someone we went to school with."
"I know about Cordelia."
"She did? Arnold Amstrice died of his. I'm not sure if it
was the vision that caused a brain clot or the car accident he had with
"I'll try to get his records. Someone's looking into that."
Andrew nodded and walked off. "She's napping. Visit later."
"I can do that."
"If they're talking, since it was about an upcoming mission, let them," Tony warned.
"I can do that." He went to check on them. He hugged Dawn,
getting a pat back. "At least you don't have to try to sit."
She snorted but grinned slightly. "You rest." He stared at
Clint. "She's still like my sister." He left.
"Everyone's threatening me today and I haven't even done anything," he complained quietly.
The nurse smiled. "Rumors say that Agent Coulson had to make him
leave his battle robot alone because she couldn't sit comfortably," she
said next to his ear. He groaned. "He may not understand
girls very well but he does understand protecting girls." She
patted him on the shoulder. "Want something? The doctor said
you can have something."
"I'm good for now."
"Okay. If you start to crash, back in your bed." He
nodded. "You're all staying overnight. We'll move you to a
private shared room later." She walked off to check on
Natasha's. "Want me to turn up the IV?" She shook her
head. "Okay. Let me know." She made notes on their
charts and let them sleep for now.
Clint felt it when Dawn woke up, the spike of pain heralded her moan out
loud and grabbing her forehead. "You really awake this time?"
"Fuck," she moaned, putting the pillow over her head.
"I'll take that as a yes." He looked at Natasha, who was
marginally better. He reached over to lift the pillow off her
head. She glared at him for it. "At least you didn't share
with everyone?" She glared harder, looking like a weak
kitten. He really hated being pissed at his girls. They were
like cherries sharing a stem, one slightly tart yet with a
sweet center and one that was still a bit short of ripe but sweet to the tongue.
"I think you're hungry," Dawn complained. "You're thinking in food metaphors."
"I probably am." He leaned closer. "Those things are scarier than seizures."
"Never had one."
"I have, two. Both caused by problems before you ask.
They're damn scary." Dawn blinked but nodded. He took a
calming breath. "But...." She went back to glaring.
"No, we're going to talk about it, even though I'm off the
mission. We trained you how to back us up if something totally
stupid happened." He leaned his arms on her mattress, looking at
her. "This is further along that line."
"I did good."
"You did, but it was risky. What if someone related you back to Stark?"
"He told you in the vision I had used the company plane."
"I didn't get that part."
"He did," Natasha said from her spot. Their beds were pushed
together and the railings between them were down. It was a very
short gap of maybe eight inches to cross over. She did that and
laid behind Dawn, cuddling her. She needed the physical
comfort. "It was the right way to solve it," she said in her
ear. "It was the wrong thing to solve it."
"I saw more than he did," she assured her. Dawn looked at
her. "I did." Dawn went limp and nodded. "If you had
called, I would've went."
"You were on a mission."
"I have gotten off missions before to save his ass," she said bluntly. "I would have."
"You were in a dangerous spot doing your usual flirty 'talk to me, I'm just a pretty girl' thing."
"That does work well." She stroked Dawn's stomach, earning a wince. "Why are you sore?"
"Her last migraine had full body aches," Clint said quietly. Dawn
nodded he was right. He stared at her. "So let's set down
how to do it properly." She blinked at him. "Some day I
might need it. I'd never yell because you saved my life unless you
did something stupidly flashy that would get the same people down on
your own ass, Dawn. So we're going to set down hard, absolute
rules of what may and may not happen. That way we don't have to
fight." She opened her mouth again. "Seriously." She
nodded, closing her mouth again. "Thank you." He kissed her
then Natasha. "You sleep and we'll do it tomorrow."
"Bullshit. I am and I've been up most of the day." He stared
at her. "They're looking at things to block off visions," he said
"It could get people killed if I don't have one."
"It could get you killed if you do," he said. "Including a car
crash or like your friend Cordelia did." She shivered. "So,
we'd like them to not happen. Ever. If they're super
important then fine. Saving my life, I'll accept." He patted
her hand. "I'm glad you had that one." She nodded, shifting
some. He kissed her on the lips. "Rest, relax. I got
told if I even thought about molesting you in that bed Dr. Pigalli was
going to castrate me."
She snorted. "Mine, she can't touch 'em."
He grinned. "They are. Only you two can rip my balls
off." Natasha laughed, which made Dawn moan. "You two rest."
"I'm sorry you have my migraine," Dawn told Natasha, looking back at her.
"I'm glad we had the vision so we could plan for that problem." He
kissed her on the temple. "You rest. We'll be here all
"Did I tell anyone?"
"Tony had you write it out. He only sent up until the point where
you were coming back." Dawn relaxed and yawned, letting them
soothe her into a nap. She looked at Clint. "Any absolute
rule will end up broken."
"If it's that important, broken is fine," he assured her. Natasha
smiled. "I don't want her to have to see that or even being
hunted, Nat. Never."
"No, neither do I." She cuddled Dawn and it was better. The
headache seemed to flow back to her, which probably wasn't fair but Dawn
was doing something about it. They'd survive this and not have
Dawn woke up in the middle of the night, finding Phil standing there staring at her. "You woke me up?" she whispered.
"Slightly. We're inside your head."
She stared at him. "You're not Phil." The demon sneered and changed. "Go the fuck away."
"No. You're mine now." Dawn reached out and touched him,
making him scream. She got jolted back to the real world by Clint
yelping in pain. She blinked at him. "Demon in my
"What?" he demanded. She showed him. He laid down with her. "I swear only the weird things happen to you."
She yawned. "Dream demons aren't that uncommon but you can
disperse them by disproving them." She snuggled on his
shoulder. "'Tasha's cold. You get the center."
"Bull. She can snuggle up to your back."
She blinked at him. "You're warmer."
"So?" He smirked. "That's what blankets are for,
Dawn." She touched him and he swatted her. "I'm real.
Just a bit annoyed. I was having a great dream about us on a
"Was I Mary Ann or Ginger?"
"Mary Ann. You don't try to be glamorous all the time." He
looked over. "Nat, come cuddle. You're chilled."
Natasha moaned and stretched out.
"See, not my dream demon." Dawn pulled her over to cuddle her,
making Clint move to her other side. She opened the link and
strolled over, swatting the demon from behind. It screamed and
left again. She scowled at Natasha. "Clint said things like
that only happen to me so do you have on the choker to become me?"
Natasha laughed but hugged her. "Not likely." Clint joined
them and it was nice. She was warming again. The demon was
not going to visit again.
"Maybe I should learn how to use a sword," Clint grumped. The
girls cuddled him. "I know I prefer long range weapons but really,
it could come in handy."
"I can teach you some," Dawn offered. He grinned and kissed her
then Natasha, who was staring over their shoulder. "Butt out,
"Fine. Just checking. Xander said he felt something odd."
"Dream Demon Arafit."
"I'll tell him." He disappeared.
Dawn shrugged. "He liked Xander for a while too. Used to
play word games with him from what he said." She snuggled into
"I am not a teddy bear," she complained.
"Yes you are because you have squishy parts," Dawn quipped. She
grinned. "You give a great cuddle and you're the sole of
discretion. Like most bears you would never tell anyone's
secrets." Natasha stared at her. She smiled. "Hey, I
missed that stage," she said dryly. "Created at fourteen means I
still have a tiny bit of childlike innocence."
"You were watching _the Neverending Story_ again," Natasha said dryly.
"Yes but I'd make a sucky empress." She snuggled in again.
"Nap, people. Before the headache comes back. I can escape
it in here." They yawned and fell asleep with her, humoring her
but they liked to humor her weird moods at times. Even if Natasha
could not see herself as a teddybear. Clint gave her a
squeeze. She looked at him and he grinned. She rolled her
eyes but let herself be soothed back into a nap. It was nice being
In the real world, Xander was adding a quilt from their house.
"I'll have a talk with my old flirting buddy," he said quietly,
disappearing to talk to that demon. He appeared and leaned on his
shoulder, grinning at him. "Have I mentioned recently that Dawn is
like my sister?" The demon slumped. "I know she's got a
very tight bond, which I appreciate the hell out of most of the
time." He patted him on the other shoulder. "It'll be okay."
"Someone wanted me to torment her."
"I don't give a damn."
"Thank you." He disappeared. Then came back. "No doing
it to Callia Stark, her mommy Buffy, her husband Hylal, or their new
spawn Sean Hjalmar." He disappeared again.
The demon looked up. "Buffy spawned again?" he asked.
"With that warrior guy," another demon called. "He's a few days
old and cranky. She's even more cranky from the birth and not
having sex for months. Hylal seems pleased with him though.
Fourteen pounds and a few ounces. Huge kid. She'll never
Arafit shook his head. "That's what you get when you as an
Asgardian to screw you, huge kids. At least Alexander's future
kids might be normal sized." They all laughed.
"You didn't hear that they bound him to his consort?" the bartender
called. The whole room moaned. "My cousin's near his
temple. There was a shitload of fits, people. Then something
happened and Gaia bound them together." A few people paid off
bets. "They ended up having to mate and bond for real to save his
consort's life. So he's now the husband of the agent over the
"Well, he helps them anyway," Arafit complained.
"Hold on, he married Coulson?" someone demanded. The rest of the bar nodded. "Why?"
"Gaia said so," the bartender said, staring at him. "Why do you
think it happened?" That demon shuddered and slumped down.
"Yeah, exactly. Alexander even took him home to his private home
in the middle of nowhere a few times." A few more bets got paid
off. They'd celebrate Xander's wedding later.
Fury walked up to where Maria Hill was waiting for him. He sat
across from her, turning on a shield around the table. "Let's be
"About what, sir?" She sipped her lite beer. He had called
this meeting outside the office so no one could overhear. She had
picked the bar so it'd be safer because he didn't really frequent the
"I heard rumors of a light tether Dawn kept on them, to keep herself grounded. Earlier proved it was a bit more."
"I'm not at liberty to talk about what happened when they were under mind control."
Fury grimaced. "So that's how it didn't ruin her?" She nodded. "Which one?"
"She had one with Barton earlier. A very light one from when she
had the migraine and another few times when she showed him memories
according to Tara." She sipped her beer. "They do have doors
between them. They can completely shut her out and she can do the
same thing. The vision today was apparently too important and
they got caught."
"So it is all three?" She nodded. "Why?"
She put her beer aside and leaned on the table. "They had them for
over a month, sir. They used VR and other methods." He
shuddered. "Barton's initial report to Coulson said he thought it
had been about four months."
"So they anchored her to sanity?"
"No, I think they created a bond to help her. I think it was him
and her since Agent Romanoff's not as tightly linked and some of the
reports he's blacked out have mentioned that they didn't find her until
"So they were hitting all three," he said. She nodded. "Are they compromised?"
"Is love compromising?" she countered. "That started before the
bond and they discovered how terrific she was after that." She
grinned. "Which I can agree with. Dawn would make a proud
little sister for me too, sir."
He nodded. "So they side-stepped it that way." She nodded. "Anything you know?"
"She mentioned once that he has a great singing voice mentally and she
tends to reach for music to distract her enough that she doesn't totally
focus on anything. Though, they were together before then."
"Casually before then."
"How deep did hers go?"
"They were going to use Barton to spar against until she killed him for
the visions of what he would do to her if he won," she said, staring at
him. "Some of them got suppressed. Some of them got removed
by Lethe water thanks to Loki." He blinked at that. She
smiled. "She's like his mortal granddaughter. That and it
let him have some political points."
"I don't like him being with the president."
"Not much we can do until he enacts a greater plan." She smirked. "He'll never make president himself."
"That's good to know but he's probably working people around to liking his ideas."
"Probably but you try to talk to the President of Russia, sir."
"Good point, the man's more stubborn than Coulson." He took her beer to sip.
"Sir, I'm not really into sharing bodily fluids with you," she said
dryly. He choked and shook his head. "Tara would be most
He looked at her. "Tara's a good young woman."
"What if she has to move?"
"I don't know, sir. I know if you had stayed infected with those
nanites they were going to move to the LA office." He nodded once
and finished her beer. She smiled. "Dawn's fairly
normal. She has to spar now and then to keep urges down from what
I've seen and overheard. They have it under control."
"Outside of her going to Romania?"
"Then they overpowered her. He chased through Stark's generosity and got it solved."
"I heard." He glanced around then at her. "I'm aware of their legal status."
She smiled. "Tara and I are following their lead this spring, sir. Did you want an invitation?"
"No. Then I can't deny it if someone asks." He stared at her. She smirked back. "Coulson?"
"What about him?"
"He's *borrowing* powers?"
She sighed and leaned her elbows on the table, leaning forward
some. "Callia Stark locked them in the depowering containment cell
that Stark has," she said quietly. "Which nearly killed them both
through Alexander nearly losing cohesion permanently." He
shuddered. "I'm told that Roque and John got them to Asgard to fix
Alexander, which was why he wasn't at that battle, and somehow during
it Phil got sucked into his elemental form."
"So immortal? Roque said that."
He stared at her. "He is?"
She smiled. "Because someone decided that someone else was
overloaded and needed someone specifically to watch over heros."
Phil appeared, looking at her. "Did Tara give you chatty drugs?"
"No, but she did make a fantastic lasagna."
"I found the leftovers," he said dryly. He looked at his boss. "I was named the Shield of SHIELD, sir."
Fury looked around. "I need a beer for this." He looked at him. "So you're over the Avengers?"
"In many ways, and Alexander. All the other protectors as
well. I had to use a lot of power calming him down now and then
before the time flip."
Fury grimaced. "How is that working out?"
"Sir, if you're sucked into someone's elemental state, whichever of you
is stronger basically ends up pregnant with the other if you don't take a
specific potion," he said bluntly. "We were locked together for
about ten minutes." Fury slumped. He smiled. "But
otherwise it's pretty fantastic. Alexander's very good to me,
sir. He's fantastic in bed. I can help him with his
duties. I'm going to be blocking this talk off by the way."
"I figured you would. All those little blips?"
"I'm still learning. I got the crash course from him and Ares, then the Egyptian pantheon."
"Were they nice?" Maria asked.
"Very nice. A bit uptight about some things but very nice. I
had a lot of fun with Isis teaching me things, and Thoth too. He
was getting Xander calmed down. They didn't go to that disastrous
Fury shook his head. "So you're not protesting the marriage any longer?"
"I decided to make the best of it and learned that he's more than worthy
of me. He's done things that no one's ever realized and kept
humanity safe for generations. He's an amazing man, sir. I
learned I could love him and that was where I made my decision. He
left it up to me until we accidentally bonded that way." He
looked at Maria. "By the way, that does change DNA. I have
my new one on your desk waiting for you to slip it into my file."
"I can do that," she agreed. "You were carrying him?"
"An energy pregnancy basically means that he's trapped inside me.
They gave me a potion so we could separate. Though there are ways
of having sex that way." She cackled and punched him on the
arm. He grinned at the boss. "He's still an amazing man."
"He is," Fury decided. "He sure as hell puts up with all my crackhead agents."
Phil smiled. "Our first kiss before the time flip...."
"I don't need to know," Fury said.
"You do because someone's going to eventually look and ask why I was
helping him free a few orphanages, church owned and not, from some drug
runners in Mexico."
"I already got that call and denied all knowledge, Coulson."
"Thank you, sir."
"That was you?"
"Yes. He was taking them out to create a distraction so they could
move the children. I had to bring him spare ammo and guns.
Then Dawn dropped some on us and left."
Fury moaned. "Is she going to keep doing that?"
"Not unless she absolutely has to so her family is protected," Maria agreed. "That's what the vision was, right?"
"Yes. His mission turned into a sacrificial play to get the junior
agents out of harm's way, and she went to save him, then they had the
mother of all fights that ended up with them splitting. It's been
worked over and solved. Barton's set down rules on how and when
she is to come help if they're stranded and in desperate
circumstances. Romanoff's added to it."
"I saw the copies. Can we block those?" Fury asked.
"We've got people looking into it, sir. To be honest, that's what
killed Cordelia Chase and we've had someone looking at it since before
she died. When it was noted that she was going to die of
it." Fury shuddered. "None of us want that for Dawn, or
"He does?" Maria asked.
"Saw him have one. Scariest shit ever," Fury told her. "He
just stiffened and started to whimper like he was having nightmares."
"He has them about huge things like apocalypse battles," Phil said.
"I saw him have the one for Ragnarok."
"I saw that scroll. He's had a few minor side visions about that."
"Anything block it?" Fury asked.
"He said heroin. It blocks all powers."
"So we could have some people with true gifts out there strung out to
keep them down," Maria said. Phil nodded. "Any idea how we'd
"I ran a search through the systems for anyone who had empathic surges
or anything like that. I've found two and they've both since died
of their addictions. I did breach the subject with the clinic in
Massachusetts. They said they had someone like that and from his
records they're right." Fury nodded once. "But we'll never
get her straightened out."
"Quirker?" Maria asked. Phil nodded. "They kept saying she was hearing feelings."
"She is empathic. I told him how Dawn spikes with that,
attributing it to her magic, and she agreed that it was a similar
pattern. But again, totally gone now. She's so far back in
her head she'll never come out."
"Good to know for future notice," Fury decided. "How far are they on it?"
"John Sheppard did some research into it due to an ex that was killed
before they married. He thinks those that train for strenuous
problems, like warriors in a battle or those training hardcore for the
olympics, don't get them as often. That with the heroin thing that
Xander said it gave them some new information earlier, plus his scan
and Dawn's, which is only with the guy at Stark International that was
helping his father with it anyway."
"Safe enough I suppose," he agreed.
"He had a crush on Dawn."
"Even better." He played with the glass. "That leaves me with a problem, Coulson."
"Sir, I'm over the Avengers in all meanings of the word. If they
need me on the ground, I'm there. I don't have the skills to jump
in like Thor does."
"That figures," he agreed. "I'll leave you there. You're good with them, even calm down Stark."
"I had to talk to him earlier about his bad habit of praying during sex,
sir," he said blandly. "Because unfocused ones hit me
anyway." Fury squeezed his eyes shut and shook his
head. "That was my feeling as well." He smiled at
"She prays to Gaia."
"Yes, she does." He gave her a pointed look.
"I'll start praying to Gaia."
He smiled. "I can usually block it off but sometimes the stronger things come through."
"The trio hit you?"
"I had to go to Asgard with Xander to get away from them the last time they got into a playing mood," he said dryly.
"I. Do. Not. Need. To. Know," Fury said
bluntly. "Especially about the trio. Just that he's not
hurting them and she's not doing anything to them to damage, compromise,
or lead them astray."
"Not that I know of, sir, but the next time you're infested with
something they're moving to the LA office and we'd have to figure out
how to handle Maria and Tara's relationship and my visitation with the
"That would give Dawn bikini time," Maria said dryly.
"I think that was why that one was mentioned. Plus Stark's main office is there."
"Did we scan Barton and Romanoff earlier?" Fury asked.
"Yes, we did," Phil said. "I made sure. Stark's infirmary
did a wonderful job treating them. They're both healthy and had
none of the effects beyond the migraine." He looked up then at
him. "Dawn's is mostly gone so she'll probably be at work
tomorrow. Or they'll be talking about that situation."
Fury nodded. "I warned the agents going to Belarus. The head
agent going complained that it looked like the rookie agents screwed
"Sir, the current class of rookies is bad," Maria said. "Even I can't get them straightened out."
"I can pick out three that I want to keep training," Phil agreed.
"Two more might make it at the lesser, junior agent levels. The
rest I slightly feel sorry for their original agencies. What about
a video game? The army does it for recruiting but something on
the game system that uses your body as a controller?"
"That would help," she agreed. "Put in mission profiles and let
them handle them?" Phil nodded. "Watching old movies?" she
"Actually, yes." He smiled back. She laughed and
nodded. "Someone at Stark could probably make one within months."
"Stark needs a backup for the suit," she said.
"He knows. He's hoping Callia wants it some day but right now she
wants to turn it into an animal hospital when it's her turn in it."
"She'd make a great vet or zoologist," Maria agreed with a grin.
"I'm about to suggest that Andrew and Jonathan get some suit
training. They've both got the battle suits they built with
Meers. They could recalibrate it on the fly if necessary.
They might come up with improvements."
"No," Fury said. "There's going to be a set playlist until Stark
gets an heir that can and will take it over. Until then, Iron Man
and War Machine both devolve to O'Neill's control." Phil stared at
him. "O'Neill, Sheppard, Mitchell, Lorne. Carter if they
must or Jackson. I've already nagged the people it the Pentagon
about it in case Colonel Rhodes gets injured. He had three weeks
of injury leave off for some reason."
"He tipped three filing cabinets on top of Dawn and bruised her ribs,"
Phil said bluntly. "She got up once she got free and kicked him
around until she got pulled off him and reminded that she was sore,
Fury smiled. "She's plucky, I like that. If something
happens and she has to leave Stark, she's coming to SHIELD as an
assistant in the labs."
"I think if something happens at Stark International, she'll be running from the US again," Maria said.
"Probably," Phil agreed. "She has two fairly known about fallbacks
and a few that we had to search for weeks to find. She makes me
incredibly proud, even if Joyce wasn't sure why she found weapons in
"I have some too," Maria said. "Tara got nervous but we came to a compromise."
"I had one in mine and a few other places. The twins weren't able to get into them then."
"They can't now. I have them in quick-draw holsters but they're
too heavy for them. No matter how much Melissa really wants the
one under the coffee table." He smiled at her. "I know, but
she likes to help me clean it and John likes to help me clean the
shotguns." She shrugged.
Fury shook his head. "Make sure they can't hurt themselves. I'd hate to see them harmed, Agent Hill."
"I do, sir."
"Good." He looked at Coulson. "Are you two going to be adopting or using Roque's mother?"
"Not this century."
"Good. That would be a bit strange."
"We nearly had a male pregnancy in the white house, sir."
"I remember. Really, I remember." He looked around. "Create a beer?"
"That's disrespecting the local establishment," Phil said. He smirked. "Sorry, sir."
"Whatever. Anything else I should have been briefed on but wasn't for security and other reasons?"
"Xander's willing to take the agents in for longer and train them properly if we find people to help him with that."
"That might help but we still need good recruits," Hill said. "I
heard about you duct taping someone's mouth shut and Barton nearly did
the same thing when he had them running surveillance exercises."
"There's a place for chatty agents," Phil said. "PR and other
areas." She smirked meanly. He grinned back. "We could
use them there. Especially if they go ahead with that movie."
"I saw the film they've shot for the first one and it's amazing," Maria told him.
"Is that the one with Stark or the one with Barton and Romanoff?" Fury asked.
"Them. It's very good so far. That new casting is
great. The one they had cast for Romanoff is now playing me and
she's good. I'm a bit more slinky in the movie but I still kick
butt. The one they got for Romanoff's part oozes sex appeal and
can still kick butt. It's a very strong girl power message."
"Stark was saying he wanted to go to the premiere."
"Of course he does," Fury said dryly. "Are they no longer using classified files?"
"They've changed locations, names, and reasons. The rest... it's
pretty spot on." Fury groaned. "It's really good. I
had Andrew hack." Fury smirked. "I'll show you and the team
tomorrow if everyone's awake and aware."
"They should be. One wanted to do one with Dawn," Coulson
said. "Stark had to put his foot down. They cut her totally
out of the Iron Man movies. Her and Callia." Maria sighed in
pleasure. "They might show up later as minor parts but no."
"Good. That's very protective of him."
Fury shook his head. "I still don't like it."
"We might get some really good recruits," Phil offered.
"That might salve the wounds a bit," he said dryly. "I'm already
getting joking emails from the head of the CIA." He got up and
took his shield device with him.
Phil smiled at her. "Give you a lift home?"
"Please." She paid her bar tab and Phil took her from outside to
the apartment building. He went to his, she went to hers, and her
nice, warm, snuggling witch. It was a good thing.
Fury walked into his safehouse and let made sure everything was locked
up. He made sure the anti-listening device technology was
active. He made sure that everything was set up so he was
safe. Then he let loose with a vile string of curses for over an
This was not what he had in mind with the Avengers but he'd have to learn to live with it and move on.
He just needed to clear his system.
O'Neill was the last to the meeting at the diner in the middle of
nowhere for pie. He nodded at Fury and frowned at the other guy
there. "What's this?" he asked, sliding into his chair.
"This is the fact that I pulled rank," Fury said. "Because I
needed to get something that's too damn important out of political
O'Neill snorted. "Can you do the same for Atlantis and our gate?"
"Granted," Fury said, handing over a folder. "You're now part of SHIELD."
O'Neill stared. "Excuse me?"
Fury smirked. "You do protect the world, O'Neill. Politics
was getting in the way of that. The president and I talked.
Then he called in the Joint Chiefs and chewed on them for over an hour
about the political bullshit." O'Neill grinned. "A flying
city goes well with my flying hell carrier."
"That's cool," O'Neill said, looking over the new orders. "So what's with the Lieutenant Colonel I don't know?"
"Lt. Colonel Rhodes, sir."
O'Neill stared at him. "You use the other suit."
"I do." He grinned. "I was also mentioned during that talk."
"Also under SHIELD now," Fury agreed. "Though under you
officially. As for the suits." He leaned on the table.
"They stay where they are. If they are injured, the replacement
list is you, Mitchell, Sheppard, Lorne, Patricks or Dannison, Carter or
Jackson. McKay is taking over the duties for War Machine's upkeep
"Is he moving to Atlantis?"
"No. He's working out of Stark whenever he gets bored," Fury said
dryly. "We have him logged in more there than we do going out for
"He's found geeks of his level that tinker," Xander said as he
appeared. He grinned. "Slight issues." Fury
winced. "John can't use the suit. The arc reactor doesn't
react well to godly issues."
"That's good to know," O'Neill said. "Sit, Xander." He pulled over a chair and sat. "He'll pout about that."
"He's going to do the wing spell during the next battle and fly
it." He grinned. "Stark and McKay are working on that
problem but even immortality would crank it sideways."
"That's very good to know," Rhodes said. "Any other ideas of the replacement list?"
"Mini Jack?" Xander said, looking at O'Neill.
"He's going on the list," he agreed.
"Huh?" Fury asked.
"The little alien Asgard Loki made me a clone." He grinned. "He's twenty."
"Damn, I could use that. The goo clones were good but Dawn got by one with a 'do I look fat' comment."
Xander looked at him. "Phil told me." Fury shrugged.
"You use him and I'm going to make sure it changes hands."
"Good." He smiled.
"Why are you so protective over the geek Coulson?" Rhodey asked.
"Gaia made them marry," O'Neill said. "He's now Xander Harris-Coulson or some shit."
"Something like that," Xander agreed.
Rhodey stared. "Does Stark know?"
"Yeah." He grinned. "Everyone but you knew it for months now."
"Also," Xander told Jack. "That means you're not stuck with just Air Force or Marines."
"Clay's going in the suit," he said.
"Pooch would probably be a better choice," Xander said. "But... I'm not sure how it'd react to Jensen."
"That's a scary geek," Rhodey quipped.
"We're all scary, Rhodey," Xander quipped back. He looked at
Fury. "Test Jonathan and Andrew's battle suits for the regular
troops or as training suits."
"I can do that," Fury agreed. "I wanted to look at them."
"Warren's is nicely free," Xander quipped. "Probably the more
engineered version. The other two were customized toward what they
were good at."
Fury pulled out his phone to text Coulson. "He can talk to them."
"The geeks that went after that senator for Dawn?" Rhodey asked.
Xander grinned and nodded. "They're not strong enough for
"They were at graduation, Rhodey." He slumped and stared at him. Xander nodded. "I let them lead a corner."
"Plus, Andrew's now married." He grinned.
"He managed to talk to a girl?" O'Neill asked.
"Yeah. She talked to him and they found a niche together.
Dawn had to tell him what a prenup was. Stark had to give sex
advice, but they're happy. Jonathan's good with his girlfriend
"Huh," O'Neill said. "Sheppard said it'd happen sometime in the near future. Guess he was right."
Xander smiled. "They're both some of mine."
Phil walked in and sat down, looking at Rhodey. "Someone has been
screwing with your suit," he said quietly. "McKay just found a
self-destruct and takeover module so you'd be incapable of controlling
the suit yourself until you blew up."
"Who?" he demanded.
"Hammer it appears." He handed his boss the files. "What
we've found so far. Whoever was assigned to watch over him dropped
the ball a few times. Hammer managed to get hands-on time with
the suit due to bribes. I've already told the Joint Chiefs and
they were livid, sir. One was taken out by ambulance because he
was having what might have been a stroke or a severe blood pressure
"Good to know," Fury said, handing it back. "Barton, Romanoff,
take the two mini geeks at Stark with you to bust him. They can
handle anything Agent Romanoff can't."
"Yes, sir." He got up and looked at Rhodey. "Sheppard's
pouting that he can't try out your suit. McKay promised he'd fix
the arc reactor problem. So if you're too injured by dropping
filing cabinets again, you're covered." He left.
Xander grinned at him. "You're lucky he was there instead of me, Rhodey."
"She still tried really hard to kick my butt."
"She had bruised ribs and you went on three week leave," O'Neill
said. "I think she pretty well did kick your ass, Rhodes.
Which means you get sparring time with our warriors." He
smiled. "Teal'c and Ronon really want to help you train and Teyla
wants to look at the suit. So does Ronon but he's not sure if it'd
work for his alien physiology."
"Stark let him admire the portable one," Xander said. "He thinks
it's a great thing and wants to take one back to finish off the
wraith." He looked at Fury. "Did you share that folder of
threats Jackson got from the spores?"
"No. It's in my filing cabinet." He texted Maria, who pulled
it so Xander could grab it and bring it back. He handed it
over. "He had Jackson talk to some spores that showed up on the
super silver metal."
"Great, threats from beyond our galaxy," O'Neill said, looking through them. "They do what?"
Xander looked then at him. "They think 'no' is a flirt. They
agree to be shot if they violate any taboos." He pointed.
"That one's closest. You're the only one with space capabilities."
O'Neill looked at Fury. "No wonder we got moved under SHIELD."
"Hell yes, and I'm taking some of your people for agents. We have bad rookies this time."
"I like Phil's answer of PR and the more open agents. Nothing
undercover but you've had to have agents calm down people and all
that. Your spokesagent and all those sort of issues."
Fury nodded. "I like that too and a few are well spoken.
They never shut up but they're well spoken." O'Neill
laughed. "Seriously. Coulson had to duct tape one for
"So an upper, more noticed level," Rhodey said. "With an
underground MIB-like unit without the cool weapons?" Xander
nodded. "That's not a bad idea anyway. The team's well known
so people will associate but you have agents that go undercover.
They've got to be less well known. You can run them from the hell
carrier and then the others from the HQ buildings."
"Run the undercover people from somewhere else," Xander corrected.
"The hell carrier's known about now. They noticed it heading for
the Sunnydale battle."
"I didn't hear that."
Fury nodded. "It was. I can arrange that. The new HQ
can have other levels that no one can get to without access to the more
"Stark's going to be redesigning his tower to house the Avengers team
for meetings, training, all that," Xander said. Fury
smirked. "That way he doesn't have to leave the lab for as long
but it's also practical and keeps them out of the way of hell from
politics and other problems."
"It does," he agreed. "When is he doing that?"
"He's redoing one floor into the gym and meeting areas. It goes well with the building they all live in."
"It does," Fury agreed.
"That was slick," O'Neill agreed.
"Dawn was going to do it for her and Steve, maybe Coulson, Tara, and the twins. Stark took it over."
"Huh," he agreed. "I've heard rumors he was going to build a second tower?"
"Next to the other one or across the street. That one's going to
be more public. Shops, all that to make the payments on it, but
also probably where the Avengers can meet and train." That got a
nod from Fury. "He's still deciding which way he likes best from
what he was swearing about earlier."
"That could help," Fury agreed, sending him a text to talk to him about
that, because he liked that idea. It got some attention off
SHIELD. He put his phone up, looking at O'Neill. "Will that
work for you?"
"I need a few things fixed."
O'Neill pulled out that folder to go over a few things.
O'Neill faced off with all his people, from Atlantis and the main base,
including Clay's team. "People." They came to
attention. He stood on the chair so they could all see him.
"We have a change of status as of this morning. We are now no
longer under military control. Now we are under SHIELD's
authority. For us not much will change." He looked
around. "Except that nothing's going to be that uptight." He
smiled. "The few changes will mostly be minor. The first is
that we now can draw from agents and other military branches.
"So if you know someone who should be one of us, you submit a name or a
dossier for me to look over. This week for the first wave.
We can add on about fifty people if we need to." That got a few
smiles. "Second, the UCMJ is still in effect, but SHIELD's bylaws
play merry hell with a few of those. I want them to be read today
and understood. The one about fraternization is not in effect for
us because I know we have a few married couples." That got a few
nods. "Thirdly, Director Fury has enacted a plan to take some
other critical projects from the government. Including the War
"Yes!" Radek said happily.
O'Neill smiled at him. "I love a happy geek. The rotating
order for injuries for either War Machine or Stark's Iron Man, and this
is only in case of emergencies or they're critically injured and can not
serve, is Mitchell, Lorne, Dennison, Carter, Jackson, Jon
Carter-O'Neill, Clay, Jensen, Pooch." He looked around. "I
would have put in Sheppard but he has a biological reaction to the arc
reactor. So if our geeks need to help with that, you are to help
with that. That project is solely under Doctors Zelenka and
McKay. Those of you on the list, you have sim time to log in each
month now. Clay, you can travel to do yours?"
"I can. Why me?"
"It takes tactical thinking and other abilities more than flying ones,"
Rhodey said from his spot, grinning at him. "Xander nominated
"I'll thank him later," he said dryly. "Why me before Pooch? He can fly better."
"He can't fight better and I'm thinking of making it a list based on
which machine you'd get along best with. I can see you being War
Machine if you must instead of Iron Man. That's a more physical
fighting style than Stark's." That got a nod. "Most of them
are pilots, but you can handle that training I'm sure."
"I can, sir."
"Good." He smirked. "Any other teams like yours?"
"I can have their dossiers on your desk today thanks to Jensen."
"Good." He looked around. "Any questions?"
"Field uniforms changing, sir?" John asked.
"No. You are still military people, just now subcontracted to
SHIELD. So standard issue uniforms are in effect. Sheppard,
your people have different ones."
"Half of us moved back to fatigues. Some of us would prefer the
other one. Most of the geeks like the Atlantis ones, sir."
"I can see that. It lets them get down to t-shirts and all
that. We'll arrange that." Sheppard nodded.
"Carter." She stiffened. "Look at their body armor systems
to see if we can use it here. Also, thanks to Daniel going
Ascended again, we have heard about a few more farther threats to this
planet. It is assumed one will be here within a century.
Sheppard, Mitchell, Lorne, Clay, you're on the team to find responses to
them. The file is on my desk." They nodded. "I want a full
response protocol for them. Also, make one for anyone else we
might run into. Before we make more enemies." He looked
around. "Any other questions?"
One of the other pilots raised his hand. "Can other pilots test into the list for the two suits, sir?"
"Yes. The training to test for it is going through Alexander's,
then two good sim tests to be judged. Because it takes phenomenal
"The motors do the moving but you're still lifting about fifty pounds
per leg each step," Rhodey agreed. "Swinging your arms is the same
way. Just like when you have automatic steering you still have to
turn hard sometimes." The pilots nodded. "I will caution
you that the battle suit will wear you out. If you are the least
bit claustrophobic don't even think about it. It's very tight
fighting and to adjust the size too much we'll have to move some
"Also, it is computer based. You don't have the AI in mine like
you do in Stark's. It has a minor one but nothing beyond targeting
and flying help, people. It takes tactical sense because you only
have so much power and so many weapons. Without them, you're in a
shitload of pain when they attack." That got a mass nod.
"Clay, we'll arrange things for your bigger frame."
"Thanks," he said dryly. "So heavier than a pack while jogging on each leg?"
"The full suit weighs close to three hundred pounds fully loaded with
weapons. Just under two hundred without. And if you guys
want to make me more compact, less energy eating weapons, please
do." He smiled. "I'll give those on the list a chance to get
handsy with mine so you can make sure you can fit comfortably in the
suit. Then those that think they can will do sim training."
"Sounds reasonable," O'Neill agreed. "McKay, the suit now has
B-2512 as it's storage and work area. It's a large enough room
that if you have to you can pull apart a section and rewire it or work
on weapons. It is not to get out of that room unless someone is in
it." They all nodded. "Good." He clapped his
hands. "Any other questions?" They shook their heads.
"Then dismissed." They left after a group salute. He got off
the chair and walked over to Clay's team. "I think you three will
have the best chance. Cougar, I would've included you but I
didn't think sniper training is going to be the best effect. Maybe
the geek's battle robots but I'm not sure."
"They are sweet," Jensen agreed. "I talked with Jonathan and
looked them over for a computer link up he wanted to add in.
They're very anime style but they're good suits for training and lesser
combat modes. Flying is weaker so they'd be ground pounding type,
"That works for me," O'Neill agreed. "We're looking them over
soon." That got a nod. "Clay, as a warning, I was told a
godhood interfered with the arc reactor technology."
"I'll warn Roque of that, sir."
"Good. Get me those names. You're the best poach I've ever had." He walked off happier.
Clay looked at his team. "Jensen, pull up the files on Ditcher's
team, Mildred's team, and Sofan." He nodded, walking off pulling
them up on Stark's trial tablet. "Let's go look at your
weapons-heavy tin can, Colonel."
"Works for me," he agreed. "There's been nights I couldn't sleep
that I ended up shining him." He led the future users down there
to look it over.
Pooch looked it over, opening the suit to look at it. "That's a tiny space."
"It is," Rhodey agreed. "Could be tighter though. Stark's a
bit tinier than I am and it was built for him. We managed to push
some things back."
Clay looked and then at him. "Emergency release in case of
issues?" Rhodey pointed. "That's not a bad spot. Right
near your arm if you can move." He shivered and looked
around. "What do you want, Loki?"
Loki appeared, smirking evilly. "I bring glad tidings." He
stared at him. "Did you think it only happened once?"
"Shit but I'll handle it later," he muttered.
Pooch looked at him. "I noticed," he said dryly. "How many
times a year do yellow furs go into heat?" he asked the god.
"Four. You whelp in just under four months. Fifteen weeks if
I remember right." He beamed. "Also, the president said
that you're much too strange and your final posting is here,
Colonel. He does not want to even hear Jensen's name again."
Clay looked at his tech support guy. "What did you do this time?"
"I ordered him a dildo because his husband was scowling all the
time." He smiled. "I used his ex-wife's account that she had
hidden during the divorce proceedings."
Loki laughed. "You did." He smirked. "Also...
You might think about your training at Xander's." He disappeared.
"I can make it over the obstacle course in regulation time," he
quipped. He looked at the suit then at Clay. "When do I get
to build myself a backpack system of weapons for when I'm flying
"He can fly?" Rhodey asked.
Jensen changed and hovered, smirking at him. "Yes, I can."
"That's really weird," he decided. Pooch changed down and he
stared. "So that's whatever the yellow fur thing is?" Pooch
nodded, then glared at Clay.
"Going," he promised. He called in using his comm. "General,
Clay. Loki just showed up to tell me I'm in heat thanks to
Roque's mother. Permission to go off base before the ones on base
decide to help me with that?" He smirked at the 'get out of here
before I have to see the orgy' response. "Thank you, sir."
He looked around. "Roque, your mother created a permanent
condition." Roque appeared and took him off.
"Roque's mom is a fertility goddess," Jensen quipped. "She wants
grandkids very badly." He changed back, sitting on the edge of a
table to look at Pooch. "You have knots. No visit from
Jolene?" He turned back to glare at him. He grinned.
Radek walked in. "Hey, Radek."
"Jensen. Where is other loud colonel?"
"In heat thanks to his husband's mom," Jensen said dryly. Radek
stared at him. "Yellow furs go as a pack, Radek, not a single
one. He's hiding."
"Must be good idea because that is clearly bad thought to have if one is
single," he decided, cracking Cougar up. "Colonel, let us start
with weapons and any needed repairs. Do you have damage
information on the weapons?"
"Not really. We weren't going to waste any for tests."
"We can waste a single one because I'm fantastic enough to build you
better ones," McKay said as he walked in with his new cup of
coffee. "For future reference, Rhodes, do not wear citrus or
peanut based aftershaves around me. I am highly allergic and can
die from it, which means you get no new weapons."
"I heard you had an allergy so I didn't wear any today, Doc. Is there a list?"
"Yes, the infirmary has it," Pooch said. "Doctor Janet did it before she retired."
"I can look at that. You think you can make me new weapons?"
"I suppose I can," he said dryly. "Since I tinker with Stark now and then, if I can't we can together." He smirked.
"He and I aren't as close as we used to be, Doc."
"I know. Then again, his daughter will kick you on the ankle and
make you sorry for that. She did Radek one day for picking on her
"I want kids like her some day," Jensen said with a grin.
"You are a kid like her," Pooch assured him, getting swatted back.
"Some day you'll grow up and like animals like she does. Maybe
flowers and penguins too."
Jensen changed into his full form, staring down at him. "I think
I'm already pretty grown up, Pooch. You're not this big." He
smirked and curled around him and Cougar. Cougar got free but
Pooch was caught. He couldn't even change because it would
probably crush him. "Problems?"
"J, c'mon," Pooch complained. "I'll tell Clay."
Jensen lapped him then grinned. "He's a bit busy for the next three days."
Radek looked at him. "Down, Jensen. You are magnificent in
many ways but still young enough to be playful. We must find you
good woman." He patted the dragon on the side. "One who will
oil and brush you." Jensen changed back to hug him. "Thank
you. Go do tech things." Jensen skipped off.
"You guys are insane," Rhodey said.
"That's why they named the team the Losers," Rodney quipped back. Pooch nodded that was true, wiping off his face.
"We were more sane before finding out about Sunnydale and then Pegasus," Cougar said.
"Don't remind me," Rodney ordered. "I remember being much more sane before Pegasus."
Radek nodded. "We all were."
Stark walked into the meeting room. "Add me onto the meeting schedule, Dawn."
"Already done," she quipped.
He looked at her, tipping her chin up. "Still got the
headache?" She nodded. "Didn't I tell you to take today
"I am after this."
"Good." He smirked as he sat down. "All right, what's up?"
Maria Hill turned on the footage she had. "I had Andrew hack."
"They probably know," Tony told her. "They're all comic geeks
too." They watched, mostly glancing at Natasha and Clint.
"She is very much like I was when I was younger," Natasha admitted. "Your ex is good, Stark."
"Thank you. I have another one that's going to play Pepper." He grinned.
Barton nodded. "They have me pretty down pat." He leaned on the meeting table. "Can we hide from this?"
"Yes," Maria said with a smile. "You can. We're going to be restructuring a bit once we get the new building ready."
"Which is partially my doing," Tony told them. They all stared at
him. He tossed the USB stick at Dawn, who inserted it and pulled
up the plans for him. "This is going in across the street from
Stark Tower. There'll be a connecting bridge here," he said,
getting up to point. "From this level to this level," he said,
pulling them out. "Are Avenger training, meeting, and hanging out
areas. Bruce, you still have your lab in the old building but this
is going to be more for the public from here down," he said with a
motion that highlighted those sections. "One up, Dawn."
"One down, Boss. That's rentable formal space for Stark
announcements and balls. You had to cut it down by two floors due
"Oh, yeah." He nodded. "Okay, so from here down is open to
the public, including a new café I hope." They all smirked
at him for that. "Here is rentable offices and things, and our new
Stark ballroom space for parties so they're not at my house. Then
Avenger only space and the top floor is going to remain empty in case
we have to store things like weapons or anything." He looked at
them. "Notice the landing pad on top, Barton. It's for a
Quinjet and a chopper." He smirked and nodded. "Anything you
can see that I haven't thought of?"
"Will these gyms and things be open all day and night?" Steve asked.
"Yes. It'll take a pass to get onto those floors, same pass to get
into the main building but it'll only answer to Avenger members.
No geeks coming up to bug people unless they're escorted and that
stuff." Natasha smiled. "I know, they've been asking you if
you wanted better weapons and bothering your training time.
Sorry. They're geeks and you're hot." He looked
around. "I had plans of a large training area on one floor, and
range, Barton and Romanoff, but otherwise it's all a lounge to hang out
in or host team dinners at. All that stuff."
"That will work for me," Natasha agreed. "The building is only ten
blocks from there." Steve nodded. He smiled at her.
"Yeah, she and Pepper are the exceptions because they do half of
everything outside the R&D labs, and Dawn does a tenth of the
R&D labs because she nags us all." She snickered
quietly. "I'm also putting up three shielded, quiet rooms in case
they're needed." He looked around. "For stress naps,
headaches, need to get away because of battle nerves, that stuff."
They all smiled at that. "Callia will only be allowed over if she
asks, and we grant her permission."
"That'll work since she's been staring at sparring practice," Clint said.
"I know. We had an incident recently." Natasha stiffened.
"It's not your fault. You had no idea that the old nanny had been
fired because she was trying to force Callia to wear out her
powers. If anyone else in the family had seen her, they would've
had security escort her out. Now you know and next time you can
kick their asses."
Dawn nodded. "I sure will be."
"They did what?" Bruce asked.
"Remember Gertrude and Brittney?"
He nodded. "The last nannies. They left."
"They got fired," Dawn said dryly with an evil smirk. "They were
trying to make Callia's powers dry up by making her overuse them to
attack them so she'd be more godly." He shuddered and shrank down
some. "So we had a talk and I had a yell at Gertrude."
"She did, impressed the hell out of me," Tony agreed. "I had one after her."
"I even put it in 'if your God doesn't make mistakes and she was born
this way, don't you think there might be a reason' language for their
little minds," Dawn finished.
Stark nodded, sipping his water. "She did and I was proud of it."
"So that's why no parties near the house," Steve said.
"That and Callia's old enough to want to be up later and see things that
happen at parties. It's better if I have them somewhere else so
she doesn't have to see it. I was thinking about making the
offices a hotel chain and renting business suites out because I more
than most know what goes on at my parties."
"Not a bad idea but there's a ton of hotels near there, boss," Dawn said.
"I know, which is why I'm still considering it. I almost
considered a casino but it's too much paperwork for that level of
"And Pepper would kill you," Steve quipped with a grin.
"That too." They all smiled at him. "So, any changes?"
"We'll have to see the plans for the gym and the range but for now it looks like adequate space," Natasha said.
"Why are we moving us?" Clint asked, leaning back to get comfortable.
"Because that," he said, pointing at the screen with the movie footage
waiting to replay, "will draw too much notice. We already draw
notice to SHIELD, who wants to be anonymous. So they'll have the
hidden levels of agents, those who go undercover and things," he said
with a nod to Clint and Natasha. "They'll have us off site so we
draw attention away. Then they'll have the more open agents who
handle the little things that the public might see."
"There's a whole rookie training class that can go there," Dawn quipped.
"There is," Natasha agreed. "That does solve their placement and the problems of being SHIELD agents out and about."
"So we're an external decoy," Clint said. "We'll have an internal
decoy in the new building of the more open agents doing more public
relations and other open things work, and then we'll have the real
agents doing the harder things."
"The more public ones will also probably be sent to battles," Steve said. "To back us up."
"That would save someone catching sight of an agent on film," Natasha
said. "Which could compromise them." Tony smiled and
nodded. "Interesting strategy." She looked at Dawn, who
shook her head and pointed at Tony.
"It means no more press people camped on the doorstep of HQ," Steve
said. "The press would draw attention to the new shops and we'd
probably have a few entrances, right?" Tony nodded. "Then
that might work for me."
"If we get it up in time and I let them put in a movie theater, I can
even host all the openings for the Avenger related movies," Stark said
with a wicked smirk. "So you guys could sneak in and see them from
some hidden door."
"I nearly used the choker to go to one the other day," Dawn
admitted. "They would not leave me alone. Everyone wanted to
know why I wanted to go see the hotty guys in cars instead of a girly
Clint laughed. "I managed to mostly sneak in. Only one girl
recognized me in the lobby when I took off my sunglasses."
Natasha shook her head. "I had my hair pulled back and under a ball cap, plus I was dressed down."
"I looked almost sloppy," Dawn told her. "They still figured out
who I was. Then I got criticized for being so sloppy and for going
to that movie instead of a girly movie."
Natasha looked at her. "That nagging reporter is back?"
"Yeah, she is." She looked at Tony. "What's the Stark policy on sending letter bombs?"
"Don't," he said with a smile.
"Natasha, what's the SHIELD policy in case I want to follow that one instead?"
"It's highly unprofessional unless you're sure of the target and only
they can get it. It's considered a last resort if a sniper can't
get a shot."
"So, boss," Dawn said.
"No," he said.
"Even if Pepper does want to do the same thing because she called her fat."
"She's letting people see the baby bump later." Tony groaned and
sat down, shaking his head. "She said she had to, nothing fit."
"Clearly." He looked at the group. "Anything I need to handle?"
"I heard rumors of a backup list?" Steve asked.
"O'Neill's people were put under SHIELD," Coulson said as he
appeared. "Yes, he knows." They groaned. "We had a
talk last night." He looked at Clint then shrugged. "About
that as well."
"Thanks for the warning," he said dryly.
"He'll use it to monitor you when you have to be off-comm." He sat
down. "We integrated the SGC and Lt. Colonel Rhodes
earlier. There is a backup list from the SGC in case Stark or
Rhodes gets too injured."
"John will love that," Dawn said.
"Can't. Godhood against the arc reactor," he told her.
"Xander told us that." She nodded. "There was a quip about
him using the wing spell next time."
"So we have SGC people doing simulations in case someone needs to take
over the suit," Clint said. Tony nodded. "Are you good with
"No. It's practical in case I get too injured though. I've had a few close calls."
Clint nodded. "Okay. Who is on the list?"
"Mitchell, O'Neill himself, Evan Lorne," Phil said. "A few of
Clay's team. Anyone who wants in it has to pass training at
Xander's to make sure you have the stamina to use the suit properly and
then sim work."
Clint nodded. "Not a bad idea." Natasha nodded too.
"I haven't met some of them and I'd like to," Steve said. "I've
met Colonel Clay and Jensen from his team. The others?"
"You've met Evan Lorne," Dawn said. "He's the quiet second-in-command under John, Steve."
"Oh, him. I'm told he's a gifted pilot and good on ground offenses."
"He is," Dawn said with a smile. She pulled up things from her
private computer at home. "This is from when we were up
there." He read over the journal entries.
"Did Fury ever get his infirmary module back?" Tony asked.
"Yeah, boss. When they landed it got flown back." She smiled.
"What?" Clint asked.
"We were shot at on the hell carrier," Tony said. "There was a
plot to get us and the SGC down right before the invasion. You
were in Arizona I think. The hell carrier got hit with a beam of
some sort. Willow fought it back. Xander showed he had
broken out in godly powers by taking the infirmary module with the whole
Sunnydale team to his half-brother's city in Pegasus."
"His migraine lasted for over a month," Dawn said dryly. Phil shuddered. "Saw that?"
"Yes, I did. John got very upset at his brother passing out at his feet."
"Yes he did. We spent three and a half months on Atlantis.
They did Mom's first tumor surgery up there. Her meds were in with
us thankfully. Tara and I babied some of the soldiers while Mom
did her thing with the ones that had battle burn out so bad. I did
John's paperwork and made up forms for him so it was easier and he only
had to photocopy and paste. That's when he got confirmed to his
job, when he woke up."
"There were a few attempted assaults," Phil said. "She mostly stayed in the armory to reload and recharge weapons."
Dawn nodded. "Or in the infirmary to help bandage small
things. Buffy was waddling by the time we got back. They saw
Xander get up with a migraine and use his battle axe on a few people
trying to invade."
"Damn," Clint said. "How was Pegasus?"
"Brutally beautiful, like Sunnydale was." She smiled
slightly. "We had just left Sunnydale thanks to the NID and their
shit. They had tried to burn Tara in the store because she fought
back. Buffy was knocked up by them. Mom was in the
hospital. Xander was livid for months on end. Spike and I
hung out a bit in LA for my stress reilef time."
Phil nodded. "I still don't like Spike."
She leaned over to kiss him on the cheek. "Yay, big brother." He smirked at her.
Clint shook his head. "Things were insane while we were off on assignment."
"Yes, they were," Coulson agreed. "I would have brought her
further to the Arizona site but I didn't want her in more danger and by
then she had Pepper helping her too. She taught Thor to play
checkers." Thor smiled and nodded. "Hangover?"
"Headache for other reasons."
Dawn got up to touch his head, then looked in his hair. She
plucked out a piece of glass. "Getting hit with a beer bottle does
that, Thor." He groaned. She smiled and plucked out some
more. "Mom, I need some tweezers please," she called. They
were in a sealed room. "Thor got hit in the head with a beer
bottle last night." Joyce brought in a tray. "Thanks,
Mom." She and Joyce picked the glass out.
Thor looked at them when they were done. "Thank you. Much
more gentle than the Valkyries would do. Alana would also nag."
Joyce patted him with a smile. "Quit going to the rough bars,
Thor. It's not good for you. You get injured and then Xander
has to go beat up on them for you."
"I knew not that he was."
"He will once he hears you got hit on the head," Dawn said dryly.
"Perhaps." She sat down and Joyce took the glass and tray with her. He stretched.
"Thor, after this meeting, go to the infirmary to make sure none's under
your skin," Maria said. "That way we can document the
fight." He grimaced but nodded. She looked at Stark.
"The infirmary? Our doctors are jealous that yours is preferred."
"Dr. Pigalli is a lot nicer," Dawn quipped. "She's not handsy, she
doesn't try to ask me how my ovaries are doing. She can fill in
for the little things like birth control shots."
"What is this birth control?" Thor asked.
"It's to make sure women don't get pregnant until they want to," she said.
"That could be helpful in some of the villages."
"I introduced some of the women to condoms when they got into my stuff at the temple," she said dryly. He shook his head.
"Xander said they didn't use them," Phil told her. "Too modern of tech for most of Asgard."
"There was contraceptive back in ancient Egypt according to the History
Channel. Even if it was smooth pebbles and crocodile dung."
"Eww," Steve said.
"Yeah, basically," she said. "Some of the middle ages herby stuff too."
Tony looked down. "Where did you see that?"
"They have a week-long series on sex through the ages." She
smiled. "It went over a lot of things, including when the nuns
were considered prostitutes for the church and clergy hired hookers all
the time. Why potatoes were nearly banned in some places after
being carved specifically for use." Tony shook his head with a
groan. "They have some really neat stuff. Including a
shooting competition show that's really good. They go over the
various weapons they switch to each week and all that."
"I saw that," Clint said with a smile. "It's not bad. It's the only reality tv I can stand."
"Iron chef," she reminded him.
"Oh, yeah, but that's kinda tilted, Dawn."
"Yeah, it is. You know, Alton Brown had an ep where he mocked that."
He smirked. "I saw that one in your collection, yes."
"Can't you guys watch normal shows?" Tony asked.
Steve laughed. "I'm sure they do but you watch Deadliest Warrior, Tony."
"I do, yeah. Some of those guys would not last in modern warfare."
"No they wouldn't," Phil agreed.
"So you watch more than Super Nanny?" Tony taunted.
"Often." He smirked back. "Xander has a very varied taste and he's introduced me to things that are very different."
"Hentai, huh?" Dawn joked with a grin for him. "I babysat that collection for a few weeks too."
Phil swatted her. "No, thank you anyway. I did not need that sort of stimulation."
"Why does it always devolve to sex talk?" Maria complained.
"That's usually his line," Tony said with a point at Phil.
"I hear plenty, thank you."
Bruce shook his head. "Glad I don't live there. Don't we have soundproofing, Tony?"
"They do and it's rated very highly. It takes a near scream to get
through unless something's open." He pointed at Dawn. Dawn
was blushing. So was Maria even though she wasn't the loud one.
"SHIELD agents are trained for silence," Coulson quipped. "That's
how we know Dawn never will be one." She hit him on the arm.
"Weak, Dawn." She added power to it and he yelped. "What
She smiled. "Something Clint taught me." She got up.
"Going back to nap, boss. If Pepper decks the reporter bitch, save
me footage?" She strolled off.
Coulson looked down at Clint. "You taught her what?"
"She used magic wrapped around her fist to stab Stallet," he said in Russian.
"So that's why they never healed," Coulson said. Clint smiled and
nodded. "Huh. That's interesting." He checked his arm,
just slightly bruised. "Nice trick, good idea." He got
up. "Those on medical leave go home." They left. Stark
got his USB keydrive and went back to the office. Where Pepper
was ranting at Dawn.
"You have no idea how they find out these things but they always do, Dawn. So how did you get that money?"
Stark cleared his throat. "Kitten poker."
Pepper groaned and sat down, holding her stomach. "Kitten poker,
really?" Dawn quipped something obviously by the look on her
face. "No more of that. Even if you are winning weapons to
impress your spouses with." She pouted. "Yes, I mean
it. Even if it is a good source of information. Send
Natasha." She hung up and tossed Tony the paper.
He read it, nodding. "Figured that's how they financed their year
and a bit on the run. That and that reparation in LA from that
kidnaping." He turned to finish the article, laughing.
"She's so far off base." He let her read it, getting a
growl. "You know there's been speculation."
"Yes but I don't care. It needs to stop."
"Then come out with the baby bump."
She pouted. "I wanted to wait."
He shrugged. "You can wait but then you get to keep being annoyed."
She sighed and nodded, getting up to get some water from the mini
fridge. She opened it and sipped. "We're going to lunch."
"I thought we had a meeting at lunch."
She checked and grimaced at the clock. "Fine, we're running out
for salads now." She grabbed her bag. "You're treating me to
one from that Mexican place by the way."
"I can do that." He followed her out. The hormone swings
were the most fun thing to watch at times. Especially when they
weren't focusing on him. Andrew got on lower down. "We're
going down, Junior."
"Do you need a guard? I'm bored and have no idea what I'm doing today."
"You're doing reports because you forgot last week," Tony said, looking
at him. Andrew nodded he had those done. "Fine. I'm
treating her to a salad from the Mexican place."
"Sure." He grinned. "I had the quiche thingy at the caf and
it's way too spicy for me." They walked out, him helping Pepper
over a crack in the sidewalk, which made Tony amused. "Pepper,
what about those little tip things that widen your heels? MB said
she looked it up and you'll become unbalanced soon."
"That's the hormones too," Tony quipped.
She swatted him but was smiling. "I've looked into those,
Andrew. Thank you for trying to take care of me." He blushed
but grinned. They ran into a reporter, who gasped. Pepper
smiled. "Have you met Andrew? He's one of our favorite
R&D people. Callia considers him one of her geeks."
The reporter stared at him. "In which field?"
"Computers and engineering, especially in robotics and stuff," he said quietly.
"Oh, that's nice." She looked at Pepper's stomach then at her
face. "So you're the one that's pregnant?" She smiled and
nodded. "I know Dawn was wearing a fairly flattering and showy
dress but I'm fairly certain there's rumors of concealing spells."
"No, she's not," Tony said. "She's off today for a migraine but
she's never been pregnant. Pepper decided she wanted a mini
"Yours?" the reporter asked.
Pepper smiled. "No, I went to a genius sperm bank." The
reporter sighed. "But thank you for asking." She
smiled. "Tony's treating us to salads before our lunch
meeting." She walked around her. Andrew helped her since
there was a huge puddle. "You are quite the gentleman,
Andrew. MB is very lucky to have you." He beamed at her for
the compliment. He even held the door for her and Tony.
The reporter hurried back to her desk to make that report before it hit the online news.
Dawn was watching TMZ giggling at the stupidity, but winced when they
showed Pepper after work. "Yup, she shows great in that dress."
Natasha looked up from her reading, nodding. "She certainly
does. Why do you watch that trash?" she asked, going back to her
"Because now and then they catch me and I'd like to know when I'm being
stalked." She got twin stares. "They got me the other day
going to Starbucks for Tony. I had no idea and didn't see a single
"Huh," Clint said. "Long distance photos?"
"No, that's the weird thing. They were right up on my ass.
It was a fantastic ass shot that asked if I wore stockings for a
reason." She found it online and showed him. He
groaned. "I would've felt anyone that close."
"You would," Natasha said. "That is strange. Perhaps some magic of his own?"
"No, I would've normally felt that too." She shrugged. "So I'm
caring when they catch me right now." They went to the 'news room'
section where they were talking about stories. Including about
Pepper having been out with Stark and a young genius. She texted
Andrew and Pepper to answer that one. Her phone rang so she hit
the speaker button. "What's wrong, Buffy? New attack?"
"Your nephew will not stop crying," she complained.
"It's called colic, it's gas pains usually, and have you tried a warm bath or a car ride?"
"You know I don't drive and neither does Hylal. I can't really ask
the agents down here to give us a ride around the park."
"I'm nearly naked but give me five and I'll pop down, Buffy."
"Thank you! He's driving me nuts! I don't think I've slept in days! Even Hylal hasn't slept in days!"
"Let me change." She got up with a groan, going in to
change. She came out wearing jeans and a long sleeved henley style
shirt with a coat on. She put on her hiking boots and headed down
to see her nephew. He was screaming his lungs out. She
picked him up and burped him, which made him calm down some. "Hi,
Sean. It's nice we could finally meet this way." Sean stared
at her, still fussing. "I'm your Auntie Dawn." She
smiled. "C'mon, we'll go get coffee." She got him dressed
for outside. "You have an hour," she noted. They ran up to
the bed. She grabbed a diaper bag too. She walked out with
him and nodded at the waiting agent. "Colic."
"I know. My sister's had it for months."
She smiled. "He'll be fine. They're napping for an hour."
"Thank you." He escorted her off. She gave him a pointed
look. "Agent Coulson's orders, ma'am. You are not to be in
Cleveland without an escort."
"Fine. We're going for coffee."
"That's fine." He helped her into the car with the babyseat.
She hitched Sean down and sat beside him. That helped him be
happier, even if he was now farting. She changed him when he did
more than fart and they were on the way to the local Starbucks.
She walked in and into a barrage of cameras. "People, damn," she
said. "Just visiting my new nephew."
"He's adorable," one reporter said. "Can we see him better?"
"Um, no, because we don't want people to hurt him to get his
mother." They backed down. "Beyond that, he has colic.
Do you really want to talk to my sister when she hasn't slept in a
week?" That got them to leave her alone. She looked at
Sean. "You'll run into people with more and less sense than the
average tabloid reporter, nephew. The thing is figuring out which
is which." The agent walked off giggling. She smiled.
Sean gummed on her collar.
"Very advanced, nephew." She walked up to order her coffee and a
glass of ice water for the baby. Her agent escort got his own
coffee. Dawn paid and they settled in a corner so she could fuss
over him. He let out one loud fart and wailed but she burped him
and he settled down. "Better?" He sipped the water from her
fingers and it was nice. She grinned. "Good boy, Sean.
Even if I did just talk to you like I do the cat."
"You have a cat?" the agent asked.
"The building had a stray cat that Cap named Loki." The agent
winced. "Black cat, green eyes." She smiled. "Likes to
stare at Clint from the top of the fridge. Natasha brought him
"I never expected her to like pets."
"Longer story there but you'd have to hear it from gossip, Agent
Walter." He smiled. She fussed at Sean, who fussed back but
it was happier sounding fussing. She laid the protections on the
necklace she had put into her pocket, putting it around his wrist and
looping the chain around a few times. "There you go. Your
first protection necklace." He cooed. She grinned and
finished her coffee. "I promised your mommy an hour with your
daddy. Do you think they're finished having sex yet?"
"If they're smart, they're sleeping," Agent Walter said, finishing his coffee.
"Buffy hasn't has sex in months. They're having sex." He
smiled. She picked him up. "You done?" She sniffed and
went to change him, coming out with him and the diaper bag.
"Okay, let's go do this." They went home. Sean's amulet of
protection lit up and he set up a wail. "Wow, so that's what's
wrong." The agent had his hand on his gun. "No, dude,
spirits. Xander!" He appeared in a flash. He looked at
the baby, the amulet, then the house, stomping in there to send any
spirits off. Three different ones wailed and fled. Then one
got destroyed by him. She walked in once things were calm.
"We're good," he said, taking Sean. "You're loud." Sean
grinned at him thanks to his gas problem. He smirked back.
"You're louder than the twins together. I don't know why since
you're not mine or Phil's." Buffy let out a sigh of
pleasure. "Not a protector unless he wants to turn agent."
"Over his tanned ass," Buffy complained. She came down to get him, looking at the chain. "Nothing shorter?"
"Sorry," Dawn quipped.
"Thanks. What was that, Xander?"
"Possessing spirits," Hylal said.
"We can send you the template for that," Dawn promised. Buffy
smiled and cuddled her boy. Dawn handed over the diaper bag.
"He had some nice ice water. We had coffee."
"Thank you, Dawn."
"Gas meds, Buffy." She patted the baby on the back, getting
another belch. "I know. It's really bad to be so gassy so
young. You'll drive off all the cute guys who'll think you're
gay." She and Xander left.
"She's so going to turn him into a drag queen," Xander agreed, then went back downstairs.
Dawn kicked off her boots and walked into the bedroom, smiling at the
reading people on the bed. "One nephew suitably soothed."
They didn't move. She tested. "Xander?" she called.
She grabbed a sword. There was no reason for a time stop spell on
this apartment. She turned and hit the demon that had appeared.
"I'm not your enemy, Key."
"You called me that, yes you are. What did you do to them?"
"We only wished to talk about how you got an extra one."
"Someone pulled it from another realm."
"We wish to speak to them."
Dawn snorted. "Hell no. I'm guarding them the same as I do
my others." The demon glared. She attacked better and it
tried to flee but it's own spell was trapping it. Dawn finally
killed it and the spell ended, making her pant. "Okay," she
decided. Clint came out to stare at the demon. She took a
kiss. "It's a dumbass who wanted to talk about Keys."
"Great," he muttered. "Are there more coming?"
"No. Probably not." She stared at him then slowly opened the
mental bond. Clint in the shower. Interesting. She
stared at him, pulling up power. "Can you explain where exactly I
am? Since mine of you is at home?"
He smiled. "We wanted to talk about the extra Keys."
Dawn attacked this one. "Mind not being him when I kill
you?" She stripped the spells and absorbed them, which made her
wince but it was automatically sealed off. The demon looked happy
but she smirked and shoved the powers back out in an attack. The
demons in there screamed. She sent a prayer up to Xander to see if
he had been the one to banish the spirits at Buffy's. Or if that
had been a plot too.
Xander appeared, staring at the demons. "Did you mean to piss me off?"
Dawn tested. He was still there. She attacked him but he
shot power at her. "Hi, Ares." She ducked the next hit and
attacked back, making him growl in pleasure. "Not. Yours."
"You could be."
"I don't want to be. I'm very happy praying to Natasha and
Clint. Thanks though." She grinned. "You're not
"I can try that other nicely forming one." She glared at
him. He smirked. "I'm being honest and you don't need all
She pulled up extra power and shot it at him, sending him flying.
"For a war god, you certainly fly like Cupid," she sneered. She
sent a thought across the bond because not even he could lock that
down. Then she finished off the demons. It hurt but she was a
bit used to it. Ares looked pleased and amused so she turned it
on him and burnt him. He yelped and put himself out. "Not
like you'll make me wear one out."
"You're not usually telepathic," he taunted.
"Yeah, well, magical extension in a fight." She blasted him
again. "After all, I'm the original green energy source, self
renewing and all that."
"I have prayers."
"Not as many as Xander and Phil," she taunted. He glared, looking
like he hated her. "You try, I push back. This isn't going
to go on very long. I wanted sex tonight with my personal love
gods. You're making it so they'll have to calm me down
first. Though it's usually very *interesting* sex." He
attacked and she blocked it and changed her sword to something shorter
and more her style of weapon. He sneered but she attacked both
ways and he looked pleased until she stabbed him in the stomach.
She sent out a blessing she had read, making him glow and yelp.
"Get out of my life. I'm not even the Key you need, Ares.
There's others that could be useful for you."
"You need to dump more energy. You're a danger to the world."
"That's Xander's job, not yours."
"I could be sparing him the grief."
"I doubt it." She stared at him. "You may like Xander like a nephew, but I so doubt you're doing this to spare him."
"I'm not the monster I used to be."
"And I'm not the glowy ball I used to be. Though if you try to
attack any other glowy ball, I'll suck all the energy from Olympus and
destroy your whole pantheon. You'd be surprised what books are at
Xander's temple from Willow's collection." Ares' eyes went
wide. She smiled. "Including that neat pregnancy
spell. You want a Key so much, that's the Arapex key, like I
suggested you find. It's actually a weapon." Phil appeared
and the room shook. "Hi, Phil." She walked over to him,
standing beside him. "He thinks I'm dangerous and he's sparing
"I doubt it," Phil said, staring at him. "Don't touch my people,
Lord Ares. I don't want to have to quit playing nicely."
"You?" he snorted. "What can you do?" Phil linked with
Xander and blasted him from that plane back to a subrealm. He
looked around. "How in the hell?" he demanded. He could hear
Dawn giggling and Phil reminding him that he was mated to one of the
toughest Gods around. Then that demonic realm dissolved, the
energy feeding back to him. He was still trapped in that
subrealm. It'd take him weeks, if not months, to find his way
out. That little brat was going to suffer.
His stomach twinged and he bent over to hold the place that she had
inserted the spell. Dawn learning from Rosenburg's books was a
danger greater than Dawn being overpowered. He went to his elemental
form and slowly made the energy in him form its own sphere so he could
remove it. When it was done, he looked at the ball that turned
into a baby god. He stared. "No," he said quietly. The baby
smiled and cooed at him. "No!" he shouted.
He had just caused her to start off the prophecy that might destroy the Greek Pantheon.
Dawn sighed in pleasure as she and Phil reappeared, hugging him then Xander. "Hi."
"Who?" he asked.
"Ares," Phil said.
Dawn hissed in Xander's ear, making him groan and call John to find
him. She looked at him. "Prophecy BS. The kid might
destroy their whole family."
"She's adorable and I doubt it."
"She?" Phil asked.
Dawn smiled. "He needs a girly, cooing daughter. One who
loves pink and ponies and lace and dolls and boy band music." He
groaned and hugged her. "I know, but yay."
John appeared, looking at her. "It's not the kid that starts it
off because it's a girly little girl." She smiled. "Damn
"Yes, I am. When I'm pushed to be. Did you get to see the evil empress outfit I wore at Halloween?"
Phil handed her to Clint and Natasha. "Cure that. Thank
you." Dawn cackled all the way upstairs. "Is everything
"It's fine. Ares said she got into Rosenburg's books?"
"Before the battle out in Sunnydale, looking for spells to use."
John winced. "I'll go talk to him." He and John went back to
talk to Ares, though the baby was now past potty training age. He
took Ares from there with her and brought him home. "He attacked
Dawn, Dawn had read some of Rosenburg's spell books before the battle at
home, and she made him a girly little princess to raise." He
grinned. "Demeter, it looks like she's under you."
She walked forward carefully to test the child. "She's the Goddess
over Roses." She blinked a few times. "Well. Ares,
we'll make sure you have appropriate dresses for her." She picked
up the baby to carry back to Hera and Zeus. "Fiona, the Goddess of
Zeus took her to test. "She is not the one from the prophecy," he
announced. Everyone sighed. "Hermes, can you herald her
"Of course," he said happily, zooming off. He landed in the bar
most of the demigods had taken over. "Behold the birth of Fiona,
Goddess of Roses, from Ares' loins. A sponsored energy pregnancy
thanks to him pissing off the Key." Most of them choked. He
grinned. "He attacked her. She fought back and locked him in
a subrealm so the pregnancy could go on easily. It was a natural,
elemental form birth." He zipped off to tell Thor and Loki, who
were being forced to have a dinner by Frigg. They were both glued
to their chairs. "The Goddess Fiona, over roses, was just born
tonight in an elemental pregnancy to Ares via him pissing off the Key,"
he announced. Loki choked and gulped some water to wash the bite
of meat out of his throat. He smiled at them. "She's an
adorable girly little goddess who likes flowers and pink so far.
She demanded her first dress be pink ruffles and pink lace." He
Loki looked at Thor. "Just think, you work with her."
Thor smiled. "Aye, but a smart man never pisses off a woman.
Especially that one or her mates as they are all deadly when
upset." He ate a bite of vegetable.
Loki stared at him. "How have you managed this long?"
Thor stared at him. "I'm a wise man and my women mostly like me to
come back to them." He smirked and ate another bite. "You
should try that instead of doing what you did to your daughter/son's
mother or Xander's mother. She was probably much nicer before you
influenced her with mead."
"Perhaps," he said dryly. He stuffed his mouth. "We must send blessings."
"I will bless her with the ability to sense nature as it matters to her special flowers and other plants," he said and sent.
Loki ate a bite and considered it. "I bless her with the ability
to find a mate that will not only tolerate her, but put up with her
moods and flowers and who can protect her." That got sent
out. Thor smiled at him. "She'll probably need it if she's
anything like the sponsoring mother."
"Perhaps but that has slowed down recently. So her mates must wear it out of her."
"Perhaps," Loki said, stuffing his mouth and shaking his head. "I need a drink."
"Aye, the dinner would go better with mead or tequila."
"You drink tequila? The favored son of Valhalla?" Loki asked dryly.
"I could not get mead. Therefore I substituted at an agent's
suggestion. Do not drink them together though, even my head was
not fit for thought consumption."
"That's very good to know." They got some tequila sent over and
went back to dinner. Thor showed him the proper lick/suck/drink
procedure and it was good enough for now. It went well with the
Clint looked at Dawn once they were back inside. "Are you all right? Injured?"
"Bit sore in that shoulder. Ares isn't a lightweight." She
changed her sword back and cleaned it then put it in the corner
again. He smiled and helped her out of her jacket and boots, then
the shirt so he could check her shoulder. Natasha came out half
dressed and Dawn kissed her then him. "Thanks."
"Welcome," Natasha said. "What did you do?"
"He pissed me off, told me I was dangerously overpowered, so I made him
pregnant with the Key he really wants." She smiled sweetly.
"Would that be considered like the child was hers?" Natasha asked Clint. He sent a thought down to Phil and Xander.
"Not exactly," Xander's voice said from mid-air. "It'd be more
like she's the godmother and doctor that did the IVF treatment.
Ares would be considered both parents but she'll be put on the
certificate as the facilitating power. I have two of those myself
and that's how I was put down. By the way, she's the goddess of
Roses and her name is Fiona, Dawn."
"Cool." She smiled at the air. "I thought he could use a softer influence."
"Yes, he certainly could." His voice faded on the warm chuckle and the quiet 'Phil'.
Dawn kissed Clint then Natasha. "So I was a good girl and I added
to the general prettiness of the world. Bia likes roses and taught
Callia about flowers so maybe they'll be playmates."
"You are so warped," Clint said. "And we were tired."
Dawn snuggled into his arms. "It's all right. You can wear me out tomorrow."
"Yes, I can." Natasha took her to bed. Dawn got them both
stripped and in with her to tease. Natasha always loved oral
sex. Clint loved to watch them have oral sex. It was a good
thing for the night.
"Wearing me out does not cure your dirty mind," Natasha complained but
she was feeling a lot less worried about it. "Like that,
Dawn. Only harder?" Dawn quit teasing and nibbled harder,
getting a moan for it. "That's nice."
"That's very nice," Clint agreed.
Phil slid down next to Xander, making him hang up with the trio. "Maybe we should send a mind healing spell at her."
"That would take some power raising," he said with a wink and a
smirk. "Which means sex outside, under the full or new
moon." He pulled him into his lap. "Totally naked.
Just you, me, and the tiny bit of oil we'd be allowed to use."
Phil shivered. "It's not the right moon phase down here and you
can't take Asgard naked."
"What about the other realms of Valhalla?" he asked.
Xander considered it then nodded. "One's in the right phase and
it's fall there." They flashed there thanks to him and landed
without any clothes. Xander had picked a good clearing. He
sensed, the only people around were some weres and they were miles
off. Xander led Phil to a blessed tree - it had amulets hanging
from it and blessings carved into the bark. He created a blanket
of leaves and laid them down, stroking up Phil's side while they kissed.
"Will anyone get upset?"
"No. The local werewolves might watch but nothing else." He
took another kiss, walking his fingers down Phil's ribs to his
hip. "To do it right, we have to release onto the ground," he
Phil nodded, watching him. "I can do that." Xander smiled
and moved to tease a nipple with the tip of his tongue. Phil had
nice nipples, dark, big, tempting. He moved to tease the other
one, trapping their cocks between them. He slowly ground down as
he licked and teased over the nipples, alternating nibbling bites and
licks. Phil was gripping some of the leaves. Xander smiled
and moved up to tease his neck. "You sure you want to raise
"She needs it," he moaned. Xander chuckled. "Okay, so maybe
I'm a bit kinky," he admitted. "But it's not really exhibitionism
if there's no one watching."
"No, it's not. I don't mind sex outside. I love getting back
to nature." They kissed while one hand was playing with the hard
little brown pebbles of Phil's nipples. Phil reached up to play
with Xander's and he liked that. He moaned and shifted to give him
"Would it be different if I was a wife?" he asked quietly.
"Then you'd be allowed to get on top but you'd still be dripping any
essence on the ground or I'd have to lick it and spit it out on
it." Phil shivered but nodded. He and Xander went back to
kissing and the nipple play. Xander finally moved down to tease
them with his tongue again before moving lower to tease a few
scars. Phil stiffened but Xander kissed each one before biting the
spot on Phil's inner elbow that made him both flinch and twitch.
Phil shifted but Xander was relentless in his need to see Phil's cock
dance for him. Finally he moved on to his wrist, which got licked
over and then nibbled on the pulse point. Phil shivered.
Xander smiled and moved to tease his other wrist. It got the same
careful attention. Phil was still shivering. "Cold?" he
"No, not chilled."
Xander smiled and moved to his stomach. Phil had a nice
abdomen. Not at all soft but not fully what someone would consider
defined. It gave him a bit of padding to tease. He found a
ticklish spot but Phil shifted to get him off it. Xander smiled
and leaned down to rim and suck at his navel. Phil shifted
"You're not." He looked up and took a long lick up the abdomen
that he was playing with. "We're going to do this but it's got to
be special. Hot memory special." Phil nodded. Xander
went back to his teasing, which he adored doing to Phil. Phil was
so uptight sometimes that making him beg was great fun. He moved
to tease the crease between his leg and pubic area, teasing the tender,
untanned flesh. Phil shifted his thighs out, giving Xander room to
tease the inside of his thighs. He found new spots there that
made Phil hiss and twitch again. In a better way than his elbow
"Have to remember that," he said, licking over it then nibbling
hard. Phil winced but Xander was having fun and Phil was still
hard. He spared a second to lick over the damp balls, making them
twitch too. The cock got a lick up the underside then Xander was
onto the other inner thigh area to tease and taunt. The hot spots
were slightly different on this side. Phil was still quiet
though. Xander looked up and kissed the cock, earning a long
stare. "Want me to move on?"
"I like watching you play but I have no idea where you're going with
that. Even though I heard the 'beg' comment." He smiled
Xander suddenly swallowed Phil down and Phil shouted, arching up.
He pulled back to nibble on the head. "That sound is beautiful to
me." He did it again and Phil nearly whimpered. "So is that
"I was trained for silence in all things."
"I'm not all things. I'm your mate."
"You are," he agreed. "I can't break that without breaking anything else."
"That's okay, I can make you break it, Phil. Whenever I want you
to." He turned his hand incorporeal and to his elemental
form. He touched the inside of Phil's thigh over a spot that had
made him warm. Phil shouted and arched up, going to his elemental
form for a moment then pulling back. "See?" He smiled and
leaned down to go back to teasing the hard cock. He let that hand
be the one that teased Phil open, slowly sliding into him, one finger at
a time, slowly making him sweat and open and swear loudly about it.
"Xander!" he finally shouted.
"Right here," he said and nibbled on the circumcision scar.
"Always here." He changed his cock to the elemental form and slid
in once his fingers were out of the way. Phil ground down, trying
to capture it, trying to make him become more than energy and
"Oh," he panted, nodding. "Xander, please?"
He drizzled some oil as he pulled out, becoming flesh and bone again as
he slid back in. Phil whimpered and made clutching motions.
"You're so beautiful like this. All wrung out, all taunt and ready
to come." He kissed his stomach, slowly moving his way up until
he was fully on top of Phil's body, kissing him. Phil moaned and
pulled him closer, trapping his cock between them so it was rubbed as
Xander slowly thrust and made him lose his mind.
They didn't notice the sky lightening or darkening. They didn't
notice anything but each other. Xander teasing by letting his cock
go elemental every few strokes. Phil acting like it was
electrocuting him. Xander was panting and speeding up
slowly. Phil was sweating hard, clutching at Xander, kissing him
as he got to the point of shouting and begging to be flipped over so he
could spill his seed on the ground.
"Bit longer," Xander panted.
Phil looked up at him. "It's daylight."
"Time runs really fast here," he said with a smile. "In a few
hours it'll be the new moon. We'll have completed half a
cycle." Phil groaned and wiggled back, getting free. He
flipped over and Xander growled in his ear, claiming him again.
One swift, hard thrust in and he was back to riding him. Phil was
in heaven and hell. He had to come so badly. He needed to
come. Xander wouldn't let him come. His hand was doing
wicked things but keeping his balls from ascending. The sky was
dark again and Xander finally released him so he could stroke him
Xander rode him hard, fast, sharp stabs that brought Phil over
quickly. Finally. Loudly because all he could hear was his
own panting and gasping as he went elemental for a minute. Xander
moaned and followed, riding him until he had to come, pulling back to
spray the leaves underneath them. Then he became tangible.
Phil slowly did, reforming on his back this time. Xander leaned
down to kiss him. "Next time, I'll take the full cycle."
Phil nodded, swallowing a moan at that promise. He took another kiss. "How do we gather it?"
"We already sent it. We said prayers up front and the earth
gathered for us to spread it there." He laid beside him, teasing
Phil stopped the teasing fingers by holding them. "There's no way I can get it up again this week, Xander."
Xander grinned. "All week?"
"All week." Xander chuckled and kissed him, nibbling on his
lips. "Even with that incentive." He moaned but wouldn't let
them go any farther. "Shower?"
"I could like a shower." A warm rain started to fall. "Not
that sort but thank you." They went home, going to their shower to
Phil wanted to be soaped and washed. He was in the mood to be body
spoiled, to be touched and stroked. Xander felt and knew that so
he played body slave. It calmed and soothed the shredded nerves
that were still twitching until he could sleep. Probably for the
rest of the week. Xander finished his own shower and led them to
the bed, drying them with a thought so they could lay down. Phil
moaned, letting Xander cuddle. "Thank you."
"You're welcome. Anytime you want we can revel for the moon phase
or whatever you need to do." Xander kissed him. "Rest,
Phil. Being debauched that way takes a lot of work." Phil
smiled and snuggled against his side. Xander got comfortable too,
ignoring his hard on that would be handled in the morning. Phil
was getting really good at blow jobs and liked to give them in the
mornings so they didn't have to hurry to get to work. Next time it
was his turn to try a kink. Phil would probably like it too.
Phil didn't even open his eyes. "We'll see." Xander squeezed
him. He reached down to stroke him until he got off.
"Sure. I can do that."
to next story
back to index