Imagine: The List
Fic posted by members of Vo's Imaginings YahooGroup

Bruce woke up somewhere weird. He was in a tiny room on a twin sized bed. He stood up and went to the doorway, staring outside cautiously. A living room. He frowned, going to look around. A picture on the wall made him pause, and then he remembered running into Darcy last night. He glanced in the bedroom but she was clearly asleep since she was snoring. He smiled, going back to the safe room. He spotted the button to release the door and knew he'd be safe enough here. Though he did sneak into her bathroom to take something for his headache. The concussions had healed enough to become a throbbing mess. She came in and stared at him, giving him a hug. "Why am I here?" he asked quietly.

"Because army guys were coming for you. Clint fired off some cover so I dragged you to my car and here." She pulled down the bottle of better painkillers, handing it over. "Cold water in the fridge, Brucie." He nodded, going to get some. "Want the couch instead?"

"No, it's probably safer if I stay in the safe room, just in case."

"Okay. I'm going back to bed." She went back to bed.

He came to the doorway. "Did that guy make it?"

"Not sure. Paramedics got there a few minutes after you ran off again. I'm hoping so. I also hope I can find that asshole who made those creatures and kick the living fuck out of them."

"You remember that science guy you introduced to Stark?" She groaned but nodded. "His girlfriend."

"Hey, I can girl fight with the best of 'em," she said dryly. He smiled. She listened. "Someone in boots." He went back to the safe room, locking himself in. Darcy went to check the door, staring at the guy standing there. "Hey, Clint." She hugged him. "I'm going back to bed." She went back there.

He smiled. "Charming offer," he called after her. "But I'm here to gather our missing guy."

"He's safe." She waved a hand.

"That's fine." He went to knock on the door. "Bruce," he called quietly. He opened the door. "I even stole Stark's sports car."

Bruce smiled. "Thanks. Thank you, Darcy."

"Be safe, Bruce," she called.

"I'll try." He went out with Clint, sneaking down to the car so they could leave. "Will she get into trouble for that?"

"No. The army didn't get to track her. They might have by now but I didn't see any watchers. If they are, they saw you leave."

"It could hurt her to be known by us."

Clint looked at him. "You think they don't know she already knew us?"

"Point." He sipped his water while Clint drove him back to the facility they all used. Bruce was rubbing his forehead so Clint let down the windows a tiny bit for some air. "Thanks."

"Welcome, Doc. Had plenty of those myself."

"Remind me tomorrow I'm checking every single med pack. The one she got off Natasha was only half packed and there was a guy there that needed it desperately."

"How bad?"

"Stab to the liver."


"You could see bile if I remember right. It's going to need to be a miracle."

"Miracles happen in the hospital. Look how many kids are born."

"True." He tipped the seat back, going back to sleep. It was a few hour drive.

Clint grinned, turning on some quiet music. It was a good way to calm down.


Darcy got up the next morning to someone pounding on her door, stumbling that way. She glared at the army officer on the other side. "I'm too old to join up, I don't like the current military-industrial complex's plans for world domination, and I'll be fucking damned if you step foot in my apartment without me reacting by killing you." She stopped him from pushing his way in with her gun. "Didn't understand the english? I thought all of you were anti-immigrant."

The man stared at her. "You did a dangerous thing yesterday, Miss Lewis."

"Yes I did, I protected a group of civies who were trapped with me in a library until we could get to a shelter, then I helped with one who was critically injured." She stared at him. "Then again, it's New York, living here is dangerous." He tried to push in again. She cocked her gun. "Please, keep trying," she sneered.

"I'm a general, miss."

"I'm a tax paying, one percenter," she said dryly, sneering back. "I have the number to a few senators. And the address to *all* the liberal media sites online." He glared. She stared back. "Say your pieces and go. I'm not in the mood for stupid this morning."

"You took a wanted...."

Darcy let out an amused sounding snort. "Really? Did I? Since that's been rescinded and if you were going to take him into custody, that would be illegal. Especially since your little general friend, Thunderbolt, which seems like overcompensation for his premature ejaculation to me, can't take him into custody the way he wants. The Supreme Court said so." He stepped back, looking alarmed. "Also, be aware that torture and conscription are also illegal in this country."

"We can ship you to one where it's not."

"You go right ahead, General," she sneered. "And all my assets go to someone just like Steve Rogers to help fight all this problem. I'll die for what I believe in. Are you going to? Oh, I'm sorry, your type get deferment from any active war zones. You stayed in the peaceful parts of the world. Real military guys wouldn't be taking someone in to torture. Especially one that they kinda made since it was Ross who screwed up his experiment in the first damn place. Now, you have a nice day, I have to talk to a lot of people online about you....General Nools," she read from his name tag.

She slammed the door in his face. Someone tried to kick it in so she called the police to come get them. "There's a military officer here harassing me because I know someone they hate," she told the dispatcher. "He just threatened my life for removing a victim from the mess last night to get them to safety. He's presently trying to kick in my door.

"General Nools, it's reinforced. I have bigger enemies than you can ever be." She listened. "Please. Just make them go away. I had to calm down last night with the sacred margarita and I'm not really in the mood to do more than harm someone for annoying me this early." She promised police were on the way. Darcy hung up and got some juice, going to hang out by the door until she heard 'NYPD' and then opened the door. "Please remove them before my hangover has kittens that're mean."

"Miss, you called?" one asked.

"Yes I did. They were really rude and annoying and now they're trying to break in my door. It was you guys or a morgue."

"Ma'am, they're military."

"And I'm not. They have no right to come rolling up on me to bitch about anything. I'm not subject to military law, I'm not subject to their stupid moments being forced around me, none of it. They're trying to get pushy because I saved someone in that mess last night who had a concussion."

"Are they here?" the other officer asked.

"No, they're upstate by now. His buddies came to get him early this morning." She sipped her juice. One of the military flunkies tried to hit her so she hit him with her gun. "Don't make me do this in front of nice guys like these ones." She stared down at him. "Make me turn into a super villain instead. I have much better plans than the one last night." She took another sip.

"Can you put down the gun with the safety on," the second officer asked, hand on his own gun.

She did that and came back. "It's in the living room. Better?" He nodded. "I wouldn't have hurt you guys."

"Still, accidents happen, miss. Your name?"

"Darcy Lewis."

"The one you saved?" the first officer asked. Darcy walked off sipping her juice and came back with a picture, handing it over. "Ooookay," he said, sharing it with his partner, who gave it back with a wince. "Is he here?"

"Upstate by now I'd assume," she said with a smile. "So these nice flunkies came to threaten me. They apparently didn't realize that slavery was illegal in this country, taking someone into custody to rip them apart at the seams is illegal in this country, and trying a civilian who isn't under military authority isn't legal either." The general made a grab for her so she threw the glass and then kicked him when he ducked it. She ended up biting him to get free, making him scream in pain. "The shit you learn in prep school," she said dryly, staring at him. She smiled at the officer again. "Can I fill out assault charge forms too? I just wanted them to leave. Apparently the military is falling down on recruiting people with brains."

"Not in my day," the second officer said. "We all had to have brains. He's an officer, they're universally college boys without sense."

Darcy walked out and hugged him. "Thank you for your service, Officer." She went back to her doorway. "Most soldiers deserve a good thank you for doing the hard things while the rest of us worried."

He smiled. "My wife would say the same thing, ma'am."

"Oh, that chip on your neck? It's been known to have a high failure rate. It was in the Chicago Sun yesterday." She pointed at her own neck. "It's sticking out and red."

"I saw. I'm getting it removed soon, miss." He called in for his supervisor to hear this going on. The military was a touchy thing with the NYPD. He blinked, looking at her. "Miss, do you go by another name?"

"Death threats, guys." She waved a hand around. "Including the tiny fingered little troll uptown." She shrugged one-sidedly. "Yes, my natal name is DeCriths."

"As in the investment firm that went down?" the first officer asked.

"That was my uncle's. I turned his partner in for embezzlement. And a few HYDRA people. His partner thought women were open vaginas with a newborn's brain behind it and perky boobs. He really needed a personality transplant. He couldn't pull off the playboy swagger any better than most fratboys can."

The first officer nodded. "I heard about that trial."

Darcy smiled and nodded. That same officer got up to try to threaten her again. She grabbed his dick and squeezed. "Keep it up," she growled. "You don't need this in the military. You're not supposed to be fucking while in uniform anyway." She yanked on it, making him scream. "You sure you want to try to move while I'm holding your family jewels for you?" she quipped.

"Miss Lewis, please," the first officer said. "We'll gladly escort these people off."

"Thank you." She smiled and wiped off her hand once she had been made to let go. "You have fun with them. I'm sure they'll love to listen to you guys more than a woman."

"Yes, ma'am, the local base's superior officer is a female general," the second officer quipped.

"Go woman power," she quipped with a smile. "I'm so happy we finally made it up there."

The officers smiled at her like she was a bit demented but they did walk the military guys off.

Darcy slammed the door, looking around. "I need to move," she decided, going to look up real estate. This was getting way too stupid to stand. Someday soon someone was going to stand up to her when she was pushing them back.


Darcy looked around the apartment she was viewing then at the potential landlord. "It's smaller than my present shoebox. Your ad said it was a three bedroom."

"It is," he said with a point. "Three beds."

"That doesn't mean it's a bedroom, even in New York or London. Thank you for your time." She left, going to talk to the nice guys at that diner. Gerdy was there. She bought them both some coffee as she sat across from her with a huff. "I've got to move. My place is a shoebox. I just talked to one landlord that thought three beds against the walls meant three bedrooms." She sipped her coffee with a moan. "Thank you, I needed this." She looked at her. "I know he got another charity he thought I was working with. Do some of them want to use it that way or does anyone legitimately need me?"

Gerdy patted her on the hand. "Hon, that's immoral to use guys that way."

"Hey, if he's payin'," she said dryly. "Which I don't think he will."

"He hasn't your old boss yet." Darcy grinned, she knew it. "What did you do that pissed him off this time?"

"A while back I inherited some stock from his company, which isn't actually his. All he owns is his name like Tina after her divorce," Darcy said dryly, smirking back. "So I nicely sold them all right after I got handed that letter by Bangers. I'm told his stock went down for a bit."

"Yeah and it hasn't really recovered yet," Gerdy admitted, smirking at the young smartass.

"Then smart business people would have their company buy their own stocks to reinflate the price. Clearly someone bought his way into his college of choice." She took another sip. "Any idea on either problem?"

"I got a few. Especially since you're not taking a salary. By the way, I heard about that incident by the library. Good work."

"The getting them to shelter? That's what you're supposed to do, Gerdy."

"It is, doll." She patted her on the hand again. "You should go be young for a bit."

"I need to find a better apartment. Mine's giving me stress wrinkles. It's so tiny I can't even bake properly."

Gerdy smiled. "That's sad, dear. Where are you looking?"

"Two or three bedrooms. Two with an office, three without. I don't care where as long as I can get to tutoring easily and work the rest of the time, and markets. I'd like clubs but I seem to have aged out of that somehow."

"You're not even thirty yet."

"Yeah but I haven't clubbed since I went back to college." She drank the rest of her coffee, smiling at the waitress that was coming over. "Are there any decent apartments in this area of the city?" she asked her.

"They're expensive, you have a roomie?" she asked with a grin.

"I can afford an apartment," Darcy said with a smile. "And no, roomies I'm not up for right now. I'm keeping weird hours."

"You into drugs?"

Darcy laughed, shaking her head. "No, I do a lot of charity work. I tutor a few nights a week as well."

"Oh, that's sweet." She smiled. "You should talk to the blind guy. His landlord has a ton."

"They're not secure," he called from his seat. "But they can be made better. You might talk to Barton."

"I would be he's outtie."

"Figures," the blind guy said, smiling a bit into his lunch. "I can give you my landlord's name and number, Miss Lewis."

"Thank you." She got up to go give him a hug and get the number. She touched something on his cheek. "You need some ambesol," she said when he hissed. "Works wonders on those." She smiled. "I learned that in the lab." She took the card he pulled out. "Ooooh, am I being sued?"

"Probably soon. That moron's getting huffy."

"He's about to learn too." She laughed lightly. "I have Brian Dandiwist as my personal law slave." He moaned, shaking his head. "Exactly, I needed an evil lawyer, not a good boy. But I'll keep it in mind if my kids need one." He handed over the other card. "Thank you. Let me know if you need stuff I can help with."

"I could use a few days of filing if you're that bored," he quipped.

"Actually, I am," she admitted. "Seriously, seriously bored. I nearly pulled out a textbook to try to learn chemistry again bored." He choked but laughed, shaking his head. "Hey, Jane tried awfully hard. Science just isn't my field. Let me know if you really want me to come file. I'm not against it. You do good work for the community too." She went back to her seat, smiling and tipping the waitress for the advice and the refill. She giggled and walked off. "I really have to get a few things across to that putrid slime monster that's attempting to run for office as an ego stroke." She sipped her coffee.

"I know a few others that wouldn't mind being paid if you'd work there for a month or so, Darcy doll. I'll call around you for you while you go file for poor little Matty."

"I can do that." She winked and got back to her coffee. A sandwich got put in front of her. "Ooh, lunch," she moaned. "I forgot breakfast. I'm turning into a science geek somehow." She dug in and put money on the table for the food. The waitress took it off to ring up for her. Gerdy smiled and called some folks who came to get to know Darcy. She was a nice girl, as long as you didn't try to grope her or threaten her.


Darcy looked up from filing, smiling at the man in the doorway. "Matt asked me to file for a few days since I'm so bored."

"Who're you?" he asked semi-politely.

"Darcy Lewis."

"I've heard about you. Are you hiring us?"

"No, I'm just temping. I'm seriously so bored I about went to learn science stuff again." She got back to it. "Matt said to file by name, not by year," she said since he was still staring.

"Yeah, we try to but sometimes it just gets shoved in."

She smiled. "You use the top one to shove into and then you sort into the bottom three when you have time," she said. "It works easier. That way you have the filing equivalent of a junk drawer in the kitchen."

"I have one of those," he admitted, coming in to talk to her. She was efficient and Matt was taking a nap apparently. "That's weird, he can't usually sleep with others he doesn't know."

Darcy smiled. "I'm getting too well known for my own good. I really have to stop the reasons for that." The new guy snorted but looked amused. "I do."

Clint leaned in. "Why are you down here?" he demanded.

"I'm temping," she said with a smile. "Until Gerdy finds another charity I can work with until that idiot tempts them with a nice sized donation to fire me." She went back to filing. "I've left the six files on the desk that he said were current alone," she told him. She looked at Clint. "I found somewhere bigger but it needs some serious cleaning since it's got blood on the floor. So I'm semi looking because he's not sure how long he has to hold the apartment for the nice PD people. I said if it was done in under a month I'd take it. He's got another few that might come open in a few months but nothing more than two tiny bedrooms. The guy joked I needed to move into Stark mansion."

Clint shook his head. "Tony might let you," he said.

"No, that would get those weenies in uniform to show back up because omg, I know Brucie."

"Point," he agreed. "Anyway, lunch or are you not taking one? You look like you lost weight, Darcy."

She held up a hand and finished up. "There, Matt, all finished and all that. Want me to start some coffee?"

"No, that was really fast, Darcy. Thanks," he said from his couch. "You guys have fun. You're too young to be all boring this way."

She laughed. "You're not boring, Matt, and I'm glad I could help when that idiot troll came up to me the other day on the sidewalk."

"I heard," he said dryly. "Thanks for the tape."

"You're welcome. I don't know why he thought all those raised in Hollywood did drugs." She grabbed her sweater and purse. "Have a nice day, guys, and let me know if you need stuff." She walked out with Clint, smiling up at him. "You have good timing."

"That's because you've lost twenty pounds," he said dryly. "And I heard you were down here."

"I've been helping Gerdy arrange things for a huge meeting with the local charities coming up soon. It lets her focus on other huge problems."

"That's good."

"Actually, I'm so bored I'm nearly picking up some old textbooks and trying to learn science again." She opened the diner's door with a grin.

"What would Steve say about that?" he taunted with an evil smirk.

"Women's lib means that women can open doors for guys. We're equal now," she dryly. "After you, hot ass." He snorted but walked inside after him.

"Darcy! Can we talk?" the waitress demanded, walking her off. "You sent me a bill that was phony."

"Someone faked fives?" she asked. "I only pay with small bills when I'm out so I don't spend so much."

"You sent me two hundreds in a letter."

Darcy shook her head. "No I didn't." She took the letter to look over. "Uh-uh. Something like that I'd hand over money orders for you," she said, looking up. "That way they can't be jacked from you." The waitress frowned. "That way I can keep track of my giving for the end of the year. Checks can be copied off and stolen. Money orders are harder than hell to cash if you're not a business." She handed it back. "I can make up for that but it wasn't me, Daisy. If you had told me I could've helped."

"You didn't know?"

"No. Not in the least. I've been busy with Gerdy and I haven't been paying attention the way I should. Clint just accused me of losing weight too." She shook her head slowly. "I can help if you want but I didn't send that."

"Then who could've?"

"I don't know but they misspelled my last name." The girl looked then at her, frowning. Darcy showed her the official ID she had with her actual name on it. "That's how it's spelled."

"Huh. That's really weird."

"I can make it up for you, that's not an issue," Darcy said. "But that's truly weird. You might ask someone if they've heard of anyone sending things like that."

"I haven't," Clint said, taking the letter. "Cheap printer paper and ribbons," he said. "That's really weird." He looked at Darcy. "Your handwriting's more loopy. I remember it from the cookies you sent us. Speaking of, you haven't baked?"

"I can't bake. My oven's broken and my countertop is peeling up. The landlord said the oven's fine, it goes to one temperature, four-eighty." Clint shook his head with a sigh. "I will once I move. She should take this to a lawyer."

"She should take that to the cops," Clint corrected. "Because whoever's trying to discredit you is passing funny money."

"I'll talk to the one that comes in for coffee," Daisy said. Darcy handed over her card. "Thanks, Darcy."

"Remind me when I go and I'll hop down to the corner and get those for you, Daisy. Let me know if you're not sure if I've heard stuff. Please!" The girl nodded, going into the back to tell the cook. She and Clint sat down. "Do you think it was the slimy one?"

"Nah. He's fake all over but this is beneath his notice. Who was it that you got on tape?"

"Think white, fat, round babyman."

Clint winced. "He's not to be trifled with, Darcy." She gave him a pointed look. "You're going to end up coming out soon."

"I know. That's why I've needed stuff to do when bored. So I could think to it since I can't bake right now." Daisy brought their lunch and hers was clearly spit in. She looked back at the glaring cook. "I didn't send that letter because I wouldn't have misspelled my last name." The cook groaned. "But if I find them they're going to wish they had found God instead." She pushed the plate aside and paid for it anyway. This diner was a local place and a lot of good happened here. Clint split his with her. She smiled, eating a few fries. "I'm almost at the housing point where I'm going to have to buy something and renovate," she said quietly.

"You could, that way you get it the way you want."

"Remember all the problems I had in Chicago when I had to move suddenly? And my last one still hasn't sold."

"Really? I thought we had a buyer that weekend."

"Couldn't get funding."

"Damn." He ate while he thought. "You don't need something huge. Just a good sized kitchen." She nodded while she chewed one of the fries.

An officer came in and sat at the counter. "Daisy, bring that letter, hon," Darcy said, getting up and going to him. "Someone's sent her funny money in my name," she told the officer. "Which is pretty wrong."

"You sure you didn't send it?" he asked dryly, staring at her. "You make a whole lot of noise, Lewis."

"I wouldn't have misspelled my natal last name," she said dryly, pointing at it. Then she pulled her ID.

"Then what's with the Lewis?"

"My grandmother's maiden name because of death threats. It's unofficially changed and the Feebs know."

"That's weird." He stared at her. "Could be illegal."

"Not even close. I have notice of the death threat and all the banks and cards I have know that." She smiled. "Beyond that, I'm not the sort to send money in an anonymous, or semi-anonymous, letter. I use money orders so it can be tracked by the IRS at tax time."

"Most of us around here file the short form," the officer said.

Darcy pulled out her phone and got onto a magazine's site, showing him. "I don't. It'd be nicer but my accountant freaks out."

He read the article, wincing at what he saw. "So why are you down here?"

"I do charity work," she reminded him. "I work with at risk teens. It's the work I want to do."

"I heard someone wrote one of your bosses and offered major donations if you got fired," the officer said dryly.

"Yeah, and that slimy politician wannabe hasn't made good on them yet either." She stared at him. "I'm suing him in court for that." She smiled. "Can you help Daisy figure out who it was?"

"Yeah, that's something we'd have to report," he agreed, looking at his favorite waitress. "You okay?"

"I'm good, but I thought it was her too."

"I wouldn't have misspelled my own name," Darcy said. "And I wouldn't have given to you in that name anyway, Daisy. You don't know me by that name."

"Good point," she said. "I guess I didn't think about it after I saw that phony bill."

"We can file it and see if the Treasury has any notes on that forgery series," the officer said. "I'll need statements from both of you."

"Of course," Darcy said. "Want me to fill it out while I nibble Clint's lunch?" He handed over forms for them and Daisy filled hers out next to him while Darcy sat at the booth to fill it out. Clint helped her do that. Scott came in during it and Darcy told him what happened.

Scott looked at her. "I heard you had to get someone on tape."

"Yeah, he thought anyone who grew up in Hollywood did drugs," she said dryly, smirking at him. "I taped it on my phone then went to that nice boy I was filing for so he could save it down for use."

Scott smiled. "Why would he come after you?"

"I'm pretty," she said dryly. "Apparently those who think they have influence in this city consider prettiness something they want to conquer and own. Which is why I'm suing the other one. They're probably golf buddies or something." She shifted over. "Sit. Clint might know somewhere I could bake again."

"That'd be great," Scott said, smiling at her then at Clint.

"The building next to mine has the penthouse open. It's not huge."

"Can I fit my desk, my couches, and my coffee table in the living room?" she asked. He nodded. "Can I make a new safe room?" He nodded again with a grin. "Do the locks work since mine don't anymore?" He growled. She smirked. "Everything's in paranoid prepper people sort of storage, Clint. Calm down."

He sighed. "Why?"

"Landlord probably. Or the military broke in and put bugs in my house since I saved Bruce from them." She looked at him. "By the way, they really hated it when those bugs went off in the microwave. It was worth buying a new one." She got back to filling it out while the two guys groaned. Someone came in and she smiled. "Hey, Brucie."

"Darcy." He hugged her. "Thank you for helping me that night."

"Of course I did. You had a concussion. You weren't in any shape to handle that and everyone was too far away handling the last of the problems." She patted him on the hand. "You can sit and talk to us. We're talking about me moving."

"One of Ross's people left me an email stating you're going to be arrested for helping me."

She smiled. "Can I have a copy? I've always wanted an actionable threatening letter." Bruce stared at her. She stared back. "The Supreme Court told him to leave you alone," she said quietly. "That's the top law in the land. He has to obey it." She stared at him for a second then got back to filling out the form. She climbed over Scott to hand it over. "There you go, Officer."

"Thank you, Miss DeCriths."

"It's Lewis for the most part. Before someone else tries to take me out or kidnap me." She gave him a pointed look. Then she went back to her seat. Scott got up this time. She pinched him on the cheek. "I'm punishing your daughter by making her learn how to bake once I finally get a new place that has a working oven." She sat down and he slid in too.

"Why?" Scott asked.

"She accidentally sent me dirty texts," she said with a grin. "Which I have erased after pointing out I wasn't the friend Darcy she knew at school and did her mom know she was sending dirty texts about eating pussy."

"I wouldn't care if she was gay," Scott said.

"I knew that." She whapped him on the arm.

He smirked. "You're mean today."

"I got kept up last night by the new neighbors. Apparently she's an official ho. She was talking loudly about how the guy last night stiffed her two hundred so she's a high ho." Scott shuddered. "Yeah, she just moved in." She looked at Clint, batting her lashes at him and leaning closer. "Is there a good kitchen in that place you know of?"

"Probably not since it got ripped out. So you'd have to restore it. It's not in a great neighborhood."

She shrugged. "It's NYC, Clint. There's no good, safe neighborhoods anywhere unless I make myself move to Connecticut."

"Point," he admitted then grinned. "We can go look. I know the landlord and I reserve the right to let you watch my dog."

"I can puppy sit. Lucky's a sweetie. He curls up with me when I have nightmares."

"Why?" Bruce asked quietly.

"Elves showing back up and making me wear the pointy shoes and tights," she said dryly. "Right before they stab me like I'm in a play." He shook his head with a sigh. "Sorry but truth. One of them was misquoting Romeo and Juliette last night in my nightmare as he slowly stabbed me." She shrugged. "They were very British, just like Loki sounded on the news."

Clint nodded. "He did," he agreed, sipping his coffee. He shook his head. "One huge problem in the neighborhood. There's some Russian mob guys who misuse the word 'bro'."

She smiled. "I tried to club and met one of them. He was really impressed I had a mind *and* boobs and then I ground his nuts into the floor because he was choking from my pepper spray bra protector." She grinned at his spluttering the sacred coffee. "Clint, be nicer to our ancestor's Juice of the Ancients. It's a precious resource."

He groaned. "Why did you do that?"

"Because he grabbed my boob and that set off the pepper spray canister I keep in it with pressure pads to set it off whenever someone grabs me against my will," she said dryly, putting his cup down for him. "Then he complained as he choked and rolled around on the floor so I nicely put my stiletto into his delicate underside and gave him a piece of my mind since he was clearly lacking some of his."

Scott hugged her. "You're like the sister I would've tormented," he said, getting hugged back.

"Aww," Bruce said dryly, looking at Clint. "Are they that annoying?"

"They're why I have Lucky," he admitted. "He used to be theirs."

"Yay, you saved the doggy," Darcy said, smiling at him.

"You need a nap," Clint shot back.

"Actually, I need my every-other-month delivery from the dildo of the month club, Clint. I'm honest, it's a need now. It's been *way* too long."

He stared at her. "I'm going to set you up with someone."

"Please do. Are they breakable?"


"Sure." She grinned. "I can be gentle for the first few times. Get me a kitchen first so I can wow him with gooey fudge made that way on purpose so he can spread it on my tits to lick off."

Scott felt her forehead. "You're warm, Darcy. Are you coming down with something?"

"No, I just need some D, Scott."

Clint paid for his lunch and they went to look at the apartment together. Darcy was happy and babbling. She could have a kitchen installed within a few days of getting the keys. The landlord agreed and they signed that day. She called the other guy to say she had found somewhere and then they went to Home Depot for appliances. Clint was texting someone he knew who was moving to Chicago. They really liked Darcy's old apartment when they saw it. So that was another thing that was going well for her. Now all she had to worry about was the job thing and the slime bucket she was suing.


Darcy smiled at her lawyer as she led the other parties in. "Good afternoon," she said smugly from the head of the table. Her lawyer sat next to her. "I believe we're here to hear you whine that you got caught being an infant about things."

"I don't believe you're doing this, little girl. I'll ruin you. You're just a chick."

"I'm not short, fuzzy, and yellow," she said dryly. "And I doubt that." She smiled. "Remember, I helped your stock tank before." He glared. She stared back. "Some of us don't count our worth on our stock." She shrugged. "Nor did we *buy* our way into college."

"I went to Wharton."

"You bought your way into it. What building did Daddy have to renovate for them?" she quipped.

"You're still nothing and I can keep this in the courts until you're broke."

"Wrong way around, princess," she said, flipping out a magazine article. "I'm sure you're aware of that magazine and that list." He nodded. She pointed at the highlighted name. "That was my uncle." He looked and winced. "There were two main heirs. Myself and his son, who his last wife hooked on drugs." She stared at him, flipping out another one. "I believe you're smart enough to know who that one was too. She was my other godmother." The guy blinked at the name then at her.

"Yeah, she was the sort, with my mother, who could call up politicians for lunch and they'd show up. Thankfully no one expected me to marry a Republican." She put down another one and pointed. "I believe you can read. There's yours in the pink highlighter. There's mine in the purple. You don't know own anything like I do." She stared at him, leaning back. "You're kinda worthless actually. I've already ruined you and you're going under another suit for those nice letters to those charities with promises that you did not keep. There's six of them as far as I know." She looked at her lawyer, who nodded, laying them out in a stack in front of the idiot.

"I'm sure if you actually got into Wharton on your own merit, like most of them, you can read." She waved a hand. "I also have proof of many other misdeeds. Frankly, you've made me stretch a bit and remind myself who my parents were and my grandparents were. My grandmother would chastize me for being so openly evil but I'm enjoying it now. Thankfully I'll never be an Avengers level villain." She smirked at him. "Should we go on with the proof against you?" She pointed at her lawyer. He put down seven sealed envelopes. "The threats against me.

"One of those is the online ones you've made that have been answered by your minions. Two of them are proof that you had your sons put a contract out on my life. They've already had copies handed over to the FBI." She patted one. "This one is the one I believe that has the SEC charges that I've had filed against you." She smirked a tiny bit. "See, unlike your lawyer, mine went to a real college on a full ride academic scholarship. He *earned* his way here. The same as I earned my reputation for helping others by doing the real work that needed to be done. The only question I've got is are you working with HYDRA yourself or are they using you as a minion? Since the same people want me for them as well."

He stood up. "I don't have to listen to this. I can get it dismissed like that," he said with a snap of his fingers. "I know all the judges."

"Yes, and they've all had to recuse themselves because of that." She smirked at him. "That is the law." He glared. She stared at him. "By the way, the class action suit started against you by those charities is in Federal court because half of them are federal level charities." He stomped off. She smiled and waved at his back. "You have fun with your remaining few weeks of peace and quiet." She smiled at that lawyer, who was swallowing hard. "Can you handle him?" she asked her lawyer with a pat on the hand. "I'm going to get away from the windows since I can see a sniper scope," she said with a point at the red dot on the table.

"I can, Darcy. Thank you for hiring me."

"I adore your credentials and you're a lot like what I hoped to be, only in the law instead of charities." She got up and walked off. Someone did try to shoot her when she walked past another open office's doorway but missed and hit the door. That shut the building down and she got escorted to her hired car by the security team. She went to the library a bit early but that was fine. She walked in. "Morning, guys," she chirped with a smile.

One of the girls looked her over. "That's designer. Damn."

Darcy winked at her. "I had to show my ass with the idiot who told charities he'd give to them if they fired me. Of course I made up the deficit. I'm suing him for that money back so I can donate it to them again." She sat down, unbuttoning her jacket to get comfy. She smiled. "My new kitchen will be in this Friday so I can bake again for our Saturday meeting." They smiled and got down to history today. It was a good day for it because she was happy.

Evil but happy.

She finally went home to find Lucky on her couch so she cooed at him. "How's my favorite furry buddy?" He barked and lapped her, making her laugh. She cuddled him for a minute. "Help me get undressed, Lucky. I could use some help and some cuddles before I go fully evil and make Clint handle me." She walked into the bedroom, finding Clint asleep on her bed. "Hmm." She pulled off the business suit and kicked off the shoes, standing there in her panties and bra. She looked at the dog, who seemed to shrug. She went into the bathroom to take a shower.

Clint woke up, blinking at the bathroom. "I really needed that nap," he told his dog. "Living room. Bark if Katie Kate shows up." He ran out to hog the couch all to himself with his new chew toy. Clint walked into the bathroom. "Are you still evil?"

"I probably am," she agreed, rinsing off her hair. She looked out the curtain at him. "Why? Gonna hit me with something harder than a pillow?" She grinned.

"You're so asking for a spanking," he taunted back.

"I don't mind them sometimes, Clint." He turned red but she went back to her shower. "Sorry, I'm playful."

"You are and it's nice," he agreed. He waited until she got out, staring at her. "You're still losing weight."

"I'm fine."

"You're going to the doctor. You never go to the doctor and we worry about you."

"Yeah, I haven't went to any of them outside my ob/gyn appointments to get my IUD put in." She took the towel from him to dry off, wrapping it around her hair at the end. "I'm pretty healthy."

"What if it's serious, Darcy."

"Don't you even think about it," she warned. "I got tested for the breast cancer gene and I don't have it. I have every other year mamos. I'm fine, Clint. I'm just stressed and living on takeout."

He hugged her to him, nestling her under his chin. "I get that. Did you get through to his dumbness?"

"He was horrified." She grinned up at him. "Then someone shot at me."

"Did we get 'em?"

"NYPD got 'em."

"I'll have someone ask." He led her out to the bedroom, laying down beside her. "I'm not here for more than nightmare help. I could use it too." She cuddled into his side, letting him nap with her. She eventually fell asleep when Lucky came in to help them nap. He was a great helper.


Scott came in the next morning with danish. "Guys?" he called. Clint came out of the main bedroom, making him blink. "I should knock," he said.

"It's not like that, Lang," he said dryly. "Not that she's not hot and all." She poked him on the side as she walked around him to get coffee. "She nearly got sniped yesterday and had nightmares. I've had nightmares. The dog's a great chaperone." He looked around. "Lucky?" he called patiently. "Want out for a walk?" No bark or fur. "Any idea?" he called. Darcy found a note on the coffeemaker she waved. He took it to look at. "Kate showed up to get him for her morning run. Sure." He tossed the note and out before taking the box of danish to dig into. "Thanks for the food."

"Welcome." He sat down at the table with his cup that Darcy made him. "You awake?" he asked with a grin.

"No." She sat down and sipped her coffee, staring at the box of evil danish. "Those are mean, Scott."

"You're underweight," Clint said. "Eat something before I have Bruce drop an NG tube."

She sighed but plucked out one to pick at and eat. "How long did it take Natasha to realize it was me who asked for her med pack?"

"I don't think she's figured it out yet," Clint admitted. "Bruce did go through all of them to make sure they were fully packed. He and Stark were working on what an emergency pack in shelters should have for the untrained."

"I hope he remembers the epi pens," she said. She ate another piece of flaky evilness.

Clint stared at her. "I'm sure he will. Eat for real, Darcy."

"It's early."

"I don't care. Eat or I'm calling Bruce." He stared at her. She sighed but ate. "You never used to mind eating."

"I was twenty-three, Clint. I'm not scared of my weight but I'm tired of the thin whore committee sneering for a bit." She shrugged. "That and the stress."

"I get that. Real men won't have 'em so they're all sour," he agreed. "Eat two, they're tiny and so are you." He looked at the grinning other guy.

"Don't look at me. I don't hire stress relief. I borrow your dog to play fetch with." He heard a bark and looked. "Awww, Lucky can climb fire escapes."

"Yeah, Katie Kate taught him." Darcy stared at him. "My other persona," he said dryly.

"The teenage girl you always wanted to be?" she guessed. "Real friends use the damn door," she called. "But let the dog in first then walk around before I taze your young ass!" The dog got let in the window and the young woman did indeed walk around. Lucky ran over to lap her, getting cuddled when he hopped into her lap. Clint groaned when Lucky ate her breakfast for her and nearly spilled the sacred coffee but he moved the cup away from the hyper tail of doom. Darcy cooed and petted Lucky, making him a happy puppy. "Did you have a good walkies, Lucky?" she cooed. He barked and nuzzled her then leaned back to let her favorite human pet him.

"I'd say you had a good run and got to sniff a lot of butts," Clint said, petting his ears. Lucky went back to lapping his Darcy friend. She didn't shoot arrows like the rest of the family but she was pretty good at petting and spoiled him rotten. Kate knocked then walked in. "Thanks, girly."

"Welcome, Clint." She smiled, holding out a hand. "Hi, I'm Kate."

Darcy reached over Lucky to shake it. "Darcy Lewis."

"I've heard. You're apparently becoming the woman with balls measuring rod."

"I break all measuring sticks, the same way all women should," she said with a smirk for the young one. "Sorry, Lucky's having lap lovies."

"It's cool. I already got some of that when we were in the park watching all the bouncing asses." She stole a danish from Clint's plate and sat in the free seat, smiling at Scott. "Hey, Lang. How's the kiddo?"

"She's pretty good. How's school?"

"Sucks ass. And now they're changing things."

"If you need community service hours, I work with some people getting ready for their GED's," Darcy offered.

"Got that already by wearing the spandex," she admitted. "My principal faced me down about it and I had to admit it, she had it in pictures. I'm going to cream that Parker creep." Clint laughed, shaking his head. "I am!"

"He's a nice kid," Darcy told her. "If you met him for real you might figure a few things out that's not standard. Including that Stark's mentoring him in the sciences."

Kate shook her head. "No thanks. Stark's creepy too."

"Sometimes," Darcy agreed. "Those days he's usually lacking sleep from a science bender or Pepper's walked off from him again because he was a jackass." Kate stared but the other two guys nodded.

"Are you a telepath?" Kate asked. "I'm sorry if any thoughts I had upset you if you are."

"I'm not, kiddo. I was a science intern for a bit."

"Oh!" She nodded. "That's cool then."

"But I don't mind if you stare at my tits too. A lot of people do and I don't mind that until they try to touch without permission."

"Show me how that bra thingy with the pepper spray works?" Clint asked, smiling at her.

"It's just a trigger pad system, Clint. I tuck them inside my bra at strategic points and if they're pressed too hard they go off and spray whoever's in front of me with pepper spray."

He blinked a few times. "Who made that?" Scott asked.

"I did in London because people had non-grabby hands but the clubs were even worse than here. I miss clubbing," she sighed. "I have to go to the older lady clubs now." She slumped, cuddling the dog.

"You're still young and hip," Kate told her.

"I'm almost twenty-seven. It doesn't matter. I get sneered at by the little 'it's not whoring if you only get presents' crew. And for having real breasts and real curves."

"Yeah, I don't like them either and they're the same. There's a huge double standard for women."

"There is," Darcy agreed, smiling at her. "Like poli sci or sociology? I'll lend you books."

"I'm taking sociology now and I'm kinda confused."

"We can help. I don't have a whole lot to do right now until the kitchen's in. Well, I have tutoring tonight."

"Last night," Clint corrected.

"Tonight too. A few are doing a first attempt at their GEDs this weekend."

"Awww." Clint grinned. "You so spoil them."

"Yeah. I do." She smiled. "They deserve it. They're working really hard. They're even getting the non-healthy cookies Friday if I have a working oven."

Kate looked at the kitchen then at her. "I'm glad the DEA gutted it from the meth the guy had been making."

Darcy shrugged. "I looked at one that someone had been nicely painted with blood."

"Eww," Kate complained. She nibbled on her stolen pastry. Lucky made whining noises at her. "No way. Dogs don't eat pastries unless you're a wolf in Chicago from what I heard."

"I met him! He's so sweet," Darcy said with a grin. "Really, really polite. He'll stand there for hours holding a door for people. I had to tease him to get some skank off him when he was on statue duty then apologized to him but admitted I was just getting her STD'ness off him. He blushed a bit but his boss came out to see what had happened so I told her. She thanked me. We talked about educational opportunities in Canada for underprivileged youth."

Kate shook her head. "You're damn amazing."

"I try. Women have to be more amazing than guys. Otherwise we're just called names."

"I think you've been amazing since you were getting Jane to eat," Clint told her. "How you managed to get her to believe hot pockets were real food was truly incredible."

"They are if all you eat is pop tarts like she did. Hot pockets have meat and veggies in the same handy carrying format. It worked a lot."

Someone pounded on the door. "That sounds like Stark," Scott complained. "Who is it?"

"Let me the fuck in," Stark ordered.

"It's open, Tony," Darcy called.

He came in and stared at her. "That slimy toad just accused you of being my daughter on HNN."

"Excuse me?" she demanded. He nodded, turning on her tv then her computer when he realized her cable wasn't up yet. She watched and groaned, calling in to that show. "You can tell that slimy toad that I'm adding libel to that suit and he just added another entity suing him," she said when they answered. "No, this is Darcy DeCriths, Senator. Yes, that slimy toad you helped by giving a loan yesterday. By the way, how is your mistress?" She got hung up on and she smirked a tiny bit. Ten minutes later she reloaded the page. The senator was still spluttering but his wife was there and she was going to kill him for the mistress and the loan. She smiled at Tony. "Someone's going to have to find me a reason to not go evil soon. You know that, right?"

He stared at her then pointed at the table. "There's two, pick them both if you want. Are you suing him?"

She looked then pointed. "Briefcase is on the table but locked." He went to pop the lock, getting shocked and yelping. "Sorry, it's security monitored too. The key's in my purse."

He dug the key out and opened it, pulling out the folder to look at. He took pictures to send to Pepper. "Pep's having a martini breakfast over this." He looked at her. "Want to make a joint statement?"

"I can if you want." She smiled. "Think I can go more evil? Are we doing it in public or online?"

"Public. It'll be faster." He looked at her. "Go get out of jammies, put on something cute yet unfashionable like usual."

She snorted, waving a hand. "I was wearing designer yesterday, Tony."

"Yay. It was a business suit by the pictures that the pap got as they walked you out and arrested that sniper."

"HYDRA?" Clint asked. "Or his death threat?"

"Worse, stepmother whore," Darcy quipped.

Clint groaned, shaking his head. "We've got to ease those threats. Three is too many."

"Hey, get HYDRA," she said dryly. "I've dealt with one for years and the other will slowly fade off after he's not elected and they have time to vent." She put Lucky down, getting a pouty puppy look. "I have to put on clothes. C'mon, you can help me pick out a bra, Lucky." He followed her because he liked her.

Kate looked at Clint. "If I ever turn that evil will you remind me I'm not usually like that?"

"I'll tranq dart you and drop you at someone's house so they can screw it out of you," he told her. She smiled and nodded.

"I don't think that's going to work on Darcy's level of evil," Scott said, shaking his head. "She's gonna need more than a convenient access point."

"I know a few very nice houses of ill repute where everyone's clean and all that," Tony said from the couch. "I'll drop her there and let them have her for a few days. That should cure most of it."

Darcy leaned out of her bedroom, clearly topless since they could tell. "I don't need a whorehouse, Tony. If I get that desperate drop me in a club and I'll find some dick or something." She went back to getting dressed. Her hair needed to be pulled up. It was all knotted after her shower and she didn't have time to fix it.

Kate looked at Clint. "Can I be her when I grow up?"

"Sure. She's a good role model and she's tazed a number of people," Clint said with a tiny smirk. "But you'd probably have to give up your bow." She made 'eeeeh' noises then shook her head.

"Darcy's last female lover is twenty-two and a hot ass supermodel looking bitch on a motorcycle," Darcy called. "You don't always need a dick, Clint. Sometimes you don't need one at all."

"Very true," Kate agreed. "Being bisexual is very realistic for many people." She smiled at Darcy. "Do you prefer one side more?"

"No. I prefer personalities." She hugged the girl. "You're underage." She went into the kitchen to get more coffee.

"We have time to do your hair, Lewis. Go fix it," Tony said with a hand wave while reading.

"We don't have two hours for me to use the detangler," she said. "Then rewash and blow dry and then brush and style." She stared at him. "That's why there's beanies, Tony." She put her favorite one on.

"Fine." He got up, taking the folder with him. "I'll send back the originals after I make copies." She handed over the card to her lawyer. "Oooh, evil. Wasn't he a former intern at the Supreme Court?"

She smiled. "Went to Yale on academic full ride all the way through law school."

"So he earned it," Tony said with a nod. "Good. Evil can be nice. We'll be back with bagels or something."

Lucky came padding over, nudging Darcy's hand with a hopeful look. "Sure, I'll walk you again. We can go stare at the pretty, stupid things that are too dumb to do anything but breathe, Lucky. You don't want to hump them, they'd make dumb puppies with you." She took his leash from Kate's hand and they went out together. Stark was shaking his head about the dog but he let Lucky into the car.

Kate looked at Clint. "Are you tapping that?"

"Not at the moment. It's breakfast." She gave him a dirty look. "Once when she was drugged by HYDRA."

"Huh. How underage am I?"

"Two years at least. Darcy likes them about her own age," Scott told her.

"Pity. Damn I need a new lover." Kate pouted, picking at another danish. Clint handed her that one and put the box into the fridge. Darcy would want one later.


Darcy got out of Tony's car with Lucky at a dog friendly pastry shop and they walked in together, Tony following shaking his head.

"You're Tony Stark," one woman shouted, staring at him. "Is that the one they said is your daughter?"

Darcy looked at her. "Tony was fourteen when I was born, dear. My mother never looked at another guy beyond my father and she certainly wasn't into teenagers. From what my whore of a stepmother said, my daddy had skills in the bed." She got her turn to order and smiled, ordering a whole bunch of food. "I'm having my kitchen remodeled today," she quipped. The saleswoman smiled at her and let her pay for it then went to bag things up for her. Tony got his own food and they went back to the car. There were press there. Darcy looked at one. "How old am I?" she asked one. The woman blinked a few times. "I'm sure you've looked it up."

"You're about twenty-seven."

"Um-huh. And Tony's how old?"

"Forty-two?" she guessed, looking at Tony.

"Close," he agreed. "I was fourteen when she was born. A few people accused her of being my sister but she's definitely not mine."

Darcy laughed. "My mom hit the last one who tried to say that but she was a few days post birth. Thankfully someone did take that bat from her." She put the bags into the back with the dog. "Don't eat those. That's for later, Lucky, and I'm trusting you not to eat Clint's lunch. I know he'll share with you since he's your human, but you have to let him have some first." Lucky settled down to sniff the bag instead. She smiled. "I have to get back there. People are coming to put in my kitchen today." She got into the car. "Laters, peeps."

Tony got in to drive, honking before pulling off. He paused at the office to hand Pepper those files and came back to take her back home with the food and the dog. Lucky lapped him before hopping out and Darcy laughed, wiping some off to kiss him on the cheek before grabbing the bag and getting out too. He shook his head, wiping the rest of the slobber off before going back to the office. Pepper thought Lucky was cute too so she'd like that story.


Darcy came out of her apartment that night, heading for her car. "Miss Lewis!" someone yelled.

"Yeah," she called without looking. "What? I'm going to be late to tutoring."

"You're being tutored?" one of the press people asked.

"No, I do a tutoring circle with some people who're getting their GED's. Unlike many who say they do charity work I do more than give money." She got in and drove off. The library was packed with people so she sighed and went in the side door and immediately up the stairs. The kids were already hiding. "Sorry, guys."

"Are you Tony Stark's kid sister?" one asked her.

"No. My mom and his mom were friends. Maria Stark was her bridesmaid at her wedding."

"Oh," the group said with a nod.

"Tony was kinda like a weirdly older friend at times." She set things down. "The slimy one put that out there." They all nodded they had heard. They got down to work until a librarian came in then Darcy smiled. "Cookie? They're not the healthy kind because a few of them are testing this weekend."

She took one to nibble on. "We had the press removed."

"Thank you so much, dear," Darcy said, giving her a quick hug. "It was clear most of them had no idea what a library was for." The librarian laughed but let them study in peace. Darcy got back down to the most pertinent parts that they'd need quickly. It'd go okay. She looked at a few. "Remember, if you even pass one part, you only have to take the parts you messed up on next time." They all smiled and dug back in with their cookies and juice.

"Why is this so hard to understand?" one of the girls complained, tossing down her pencil.

"Grammar rules suck," Darcy said, looking honest. "I have a masters degree and two bachelors and I still don't fully understand all the little nitpicky rules that only work in certain circumstances. I go by what sounds right. If it sounds right then it's probably correct." She smiled and nodded, getting back to it. She looked around. "Is she sick?" she asked one girl.

"Her mom," she said bluntly. "She walked out earlier to her mother complaining she was spending so much time doing this and it won't amount to anything."

"Bullshit. This is a stepping stone. Unless you want to be doing the same thing that got your parents trapped, this is a way up at least a bit higher." A few glared at her. "Why are your parents stuck down here?" she asked one of the glaring ones.

"I came along," he admitted.

"And you're not doing the same thing, right?" He shook his head. "Did they get to graduate?"

"My dad did. He's an electrician."

"Which is a good paying job but having a family is expensive," Darcy agreed. He nodded. "If your mom had her diploma could she have done more?"

"Yeah, probably, but she said it didn't matter. Girls just became wives."

"In her day, probably. Nowadays, no. Now we're girls and women and wives and mothers and we work and all that other stuff. Yeah, some will just become moms. Some of you though, you'll start businesses. Even if it's something like a fast food place you work your way up until you buy a franchise. Or a home cleaning business or even a bigger thing like a construction firm. Girls do work construction." They all nodded. She looked at the kid still glaring. "What're you going to do if you can use this to find a real job that pays good wages?"

"Move," he said. "The city's getting too dangerous."

"It is," Darcy agreed. "Otherwise I wouldn't have to wear a pepper spray canister. And I wouldn't have had to yell at that one kid who nearly molested the little girl." He nodded. "Is this a stepping stone for you or an end?"

"A stepping stone. I can get into the vo-tech program I want with it."

"Good!" She smiled at one. "Did you talk to them?" She nodded. "And?"

"I need my GED or diploma first then it's a year and they have financial aid. Did that guy live?"

"I haven't seen him in the papers," Darcy admitted. "If you wanted to you could track it backwards to the hospital to see if he's still there. Sometimes they'll give you some limited information of 'yeah he's a patient' if you tell them why you're asking."

"I might." She looked at the girl staring at her. "During that battle I helped Darcy with that guy that was stabbed. She talked to me about a nursing program at the vo-tech."

"It's a good field. Good pay, nurses get respect," the girl agreed. "Don't be a CNA, it's all bedpans and bed baths. LPN's do home stuff and some hospital stuff and it pays pretty good. My mom was until she blew out her back." The girl smiled and nodded. "You can come ask her stuff if you want. She'll be honest about how sometimes she had shit hours and bad people above her."

"That can be any job," Darcy said. "But if you love the job it doesn't matter as much. I used to spend a few days at a time awake when I was a science flunky. But I loved my job and I loved Jane so it only annoyed me occasionally when I really wanted to go date and stuff. If you're doing stuff you hate it'll just wear you out faster or make you sick. Though there are some cases where you'd love to do something and you suck at it. I'm that way with painting. I'd love to paint for stress relief, I can't even do it on the computer." The kids giggled and got back to work. At nearly the end of the session someone knocked on the door. "Who is it?" she called. An agent opened the door to look at her. "Hi, can we help you?" she asked politely.

"Miss Lewis, can we talk to you please?"

She took a picture of him and sent it then got up and gathered her things. "You guys give me back the cookie box tomorrow and I'll bring real food if my kitchen's finished." They nodded, eating another one. "Don't forget to give the librarian back the key please." She handed it over. She put on her jacket as she walked out with him and put her bag over her shoulder but across her chest. "What's up, agent guy? And who're you?"

"Miss Lewis, we need to talk to you about some militant moments you've been having," he said patiently.

"I don't have militant moments. I have moments when I have to prove myself. Big difference."

"Fine, whatever. You're disrupting the political process."

"He made it about me. I'm fixing the shit and I'm not the only one. There's a lot of people suing him. We're just the newest and the more powerful ones." She stared at him. "Was there anything else?"

"Yes, young lady, we still need to talk."

She stared at him. "I'm not that young."

"You're younger than I am."

"You're probably twenty-five, I'm older." She stared at him. "For that matter, I have a lawyer, use him. I think we're done here since I'm not going to be cowed. It just makes me more mad." She stared at him until he backed off a step but his eyes said he wasn't scared. "You have a nice night. I've got to go babysit a friend's dog." She walked off. He shot something into her and she had time to hit her panic button before she fell.

He plucked it off her and turned it off. "That won't help you," he said. He hauled her up, nodding his partner to help him. They carried her down to the car. The kids would never realize it. There were others who would fill in.

Of course, one of the kids had seen and taken video so he put it up online like Darcy had taught them to do if something ever happened to her. The others got a nod and they left once it was clear, one of them making sure they handed the key back. The kid with the key smiled at the librarian. "Miss Darcy left something. Do you have another contact number for her? She said her phone was dead when she left with that agent guy."

"Of course, dear." She let her have the rental card.

The girl wrote it down. "Thanks." She walked off calling it. Everyone had cellphones these days. "Hi, this is one of Darcy Lewis' tutoring kids and some agents just darted her and carried her off. They didn't say. We got video of them and I know she took a picture of the one that knocked on the door. Yeah, from her phone. Thanks. We're kinda worried since that slimy thing is causing even more problems. I hope she's okay." She hung up and went home to tell her mother and put it on her facebook page. That Stark guy had people who monitored the internet, right? And he was close to Lewis by the news....


The agent who had answered Agent May's phone looked at her. "Who the hell is Lewis?"

"She's a special case we're watching out for. She's the one that hit that politician. Is she all right?"

"Some agents took her." He put her phone down. "You can tell them later."

"If I don't tell them now she could die and she's the one that's getting kids into their GED's and things." She stared at him. "She's also an indirect line to Stark."

"Hmm. Fine, call that in but nothing else."

She took her phone and dialed it. "It's me. Lewis got kidnaped." The agent nodded. "Who?"

He took the phone. "I answered Agent May's phone," he said dryly. "The child on the other side said some agent had taken her and darted her. They were really worried. No idea why. No idea who she was until this one told me. Thanks." He hung up, staring at her. "Feel better?"

"Yeah. A lot," she admitted. "Darcy's a sweet kid but hell when you piss her off."

"Sounds like my sort."

"She'd destroy you. Hard." He hit her. "Is that the best you can do?" May asked dryly. "I've had worse sparring with newbie agents." He hit her harder. "Well at least that's slightly better. You might even make it up to the level of effective but not getting anything from me by the time people get here to rescue me."


Stark and Clint's phones both rang. "Fuck," Clint said. The others, who were going to an emergency they needed to work together to solve, all looked at him. "Supposed agents took Darcy." Natasha winced.

Stark was growling. "We have it on video." He let Natasha see it. "HDYRA, hitter, or idiot?"

She took it to look at. "Low quality cellphone video. HYDRA though." She handed it back. "He had been FBI and got outed by Ward."

Clint nodded, sending a message to someone. "Kate's local."

"She can't handle HYDRA," Natasha said firmly.

"She can find out where they are so I can help her handle it on the way back."

"She'll be fine for a few hours. They don't want to kill her," Natasha said.

Clint stared at her then shook his head. "I'm not going to get into this argument with you, Natasha. You have fun with your thoughts." Natasha glared, he stared back. "Really."

Steve cleared his throat. "Darcy?" Clint nodded, letting him see the message he had gotten forwarded by Stark's AI FRIDAY. "Oh, great." He sighed. "This could take us as long as a day or more." He looked at Clint. "Are there others who could help her?"

"Do they have Barnes?" Clint asked. "Because their usual plans for her include him. Not that they'll have much luck right now."

"Problems she hasn't explained?" Stark asked impatiently.

"Yeah, she found out last week her IUD went through her uterus," Scott said quietly. "I was snooping and found the information sheet. They'll have to remove it surgically and only two docs in the city area are good enough to do that without leaving scars that would prevent conception."

"She's been in a crapload of pain, that's why she's not been eating right," Clint agreed. "I knew something was up and asked her bluntly that night after snooping and finding the same info."

Stark winced. "Can your little friend guard the docs?"

"That may be more possible," Clint admitted, sending that in. She agreed they could put out a warning to them that they might be kidnaped to help a hostage that HYDRA had. Plus try to track Darcy. She had some friends who did the same work. "Kate'll tell the others she knows. She's made some real friends."

"I saw her with Peter," Steve said.

Clint grinned. "Scott and I introduced her subtly to a few who do the same thing less openly than Peter."

"There are?" Stark demanded. "Do they do the same sort of damage?"

"Have you seen it happen?" Clint shot back. "Then no." He called one directly. "It's Barton, I need a favor, don't hang up, HYDRA just kidnaped Darcy Lewis." That got an interested grunt. "Seriously. From her tutoring class. One of the kids put up a video of what happened. We're on our way to a problem," he said dryly. "That could take up to a week. They'll have to be importing a good GYN surgeon for her too because of a slight issue with her birth control method.

"Yeah, them. That's them. From the library she tutors kids in yup." He leaned his head back. "Please. I've already asked Katie and she'll tell the docs that they're a kidnaping risk. Hey, if you guys can find her and remove her from them, go for it. If not, we might not be back for a week and by then Darcy might get herself killed by mouthing off to them. They're probably not real fond of that. Thanks." He hung up. "The others in the know will see if they can find her. HYDRA's too big for them to take on but if they find her they'll let others know."

"How bad could that be?" Stark asked, looking at Bruce.

"Could cause a lot of damage depending on how far it went through and if she's got leaking fluids into her abdomen." Clint shook his head. "Just through?"

"Most of the way through. It happened when they had to save her from CNN. She was cramping that night and said that was the first night she had a problem."

"Then it's not been a long time so there's probably not a lot of scar tissue forming already," Bruce said, considering it. "But if they don't get it out soon she'll have a lot more coming and more problems. Was she going in soon?"

"They just did the ultrasound to find out what the cramping was and she's got a follow up in three days with one of the docs," Clint said. He sent that text to Kate's phone too. She could call her off. "So probably surgery soon."

Bruce nodded. "That is something they'll have to correct if they want to knock her up by Barnes."

"Okay so huge problem that could give us time to rescue her," Steve said. Clint and Bruce both nodded. "Which we can do on the way back if we're walking. Because I don't want to leave her there either but this is to huge to risk with a partial team."

"Could this be a diversion?" Natasha asked.

Steve nodded. "Could be. We'll know in about two hours." They others nodded and got into the battle mindset. They could handle Darcy problems later.


Kate showed up on the doctor's doorstep in uniform, scaring the crap out of his wife. "Ma'am, I need to talk to your husband. One of his patients was kidnaped and we think they're going to come after him as well."

"Why would they?" she demanded shrilly.

"Because HYDRA are stupid that way and they're trying to start a breeding program." She winced, going to find her husband. "Sir."


"The other Hawkeye. One of your patients," she said, handing over the appointment card she had found on Darcy's desk. "Was kidnaped earlier by HYDRA. They've been trying for over a year to start a breeding program using her and she's been able to get around them to protect herself until tonight."

"If I remember right, she needed surgery."

"Yes and you're one of the two in this city who can do it well enough," Kate reminded him.

"I can't just not go to work, young lady."

"I get that, I really do. You do important work. I just have to warn you, which is why I'm here, that they may be coming so if you've got a handy bodyguard sort of people, that might be a good idea, sir."

"I...yeah, I can find one."

She smiled. "Good luck and if you do get taken we'll try to rescue you with her." She ran off, merging into the shadows.

He shut the door. "That is the strangest thing ever. So very weird." He went to call his partner, the other doctor who could do that surgery to warn him. They could have a few paranoid days with a bodyguard around. He went to talk to his wife about what she had said, just in case so she could call the authorities if he disappeared.


Darcy woke up with a groan, staring at the man at the foot of the bed she was chained by the ankle to. She smirked at him. "It won't work even if you tried," she sneered.

"We took out your birth control device," he said, looking at his clipboard.

"I doubt that since I'm not hemorrhaging." She looked at herself then sat up, staring at him. "You can't do that since it's presently stuck in a uterine vein." He glared at her. She stared back. "Sorry but the IUD went through thanks to your people in LA. I'm a few weeks from having it removed and I was told if it moved on its own I'd be bleeding to death very quickly. So I doubt you did what you think you did."

"You had something we removed, Miss Lewis."

"That was probably a tampon. Haven't you ever seen a woman having her period?" He tried to hit her so she bit him. "Nah-uh. You don't get to try that." He sneered and snapped, calling over bruisers. She shrugged. "I'll kill you and them when I get free. Yay. No matter what you do, you're still gonna die."

"We'll be brainwashing you once we know it worked," he said as he walked off making notes.

"Yeah, that'll mean a miscarriage from the energy spikes," she said. "Sorry, someone studied that in case you guys got a female agent." She smirked at the bruisers. "Do you want me to bite you too?"

"We can pull out your teeth," one offered. "The docs would like the DNA anyway."

Darcy smirked, then spit the blood at him. "Try, mother fuckers. Just you try." One reached for her and she broke his arm then she looked at the other one. "I'm not cooperative. Ever. Even if I was brainwashed I wouldn't be cooperative. I'm not that sort of girl." They sneered.

"She can't conceive if she's too injured," the doctor called. "Put her in a cell. With him. Maybe it'll work the natural way."

"It'd still kill both of us when the growing kid pulled it out," Darcy said dryly. "And hey, with my cycle going on, can't happen for at least another few weeks anyway. Even I know that and I only took college biology." They dragged her up the halls to a cell then threw her inside and slammed the door shut. Thankfully she landed on top of a slightly soft person. She blinked up at him. "Hey."

James Barnes pushed her off him. "Why are you here?"

"Their crackhead plan to give you kids, Barnes. They kidnaped me from tutoring. Though my kids know to tell everyone they can to protect themselves." She settled against the wall, staring at him. "How long have you been in here and are you James or Winter?"

"James, they haven't tried yet," he said quietly. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah. They just found out there's a hitch to their plans called I need GYN surgery soon. There's very few people who can do the procedure without leaving a huge scar that would mean I'm probably not going to be able to get pregnant. That plus me being girlish? They can't do a whole lot of anything for at least a few months."


"Yeah, months. The recovery from the surgery will take about a month by itself. Plus it can take up to ten or twelve months for the pill I take daily to fully wear out of my system." She smirked a tiny bit. "My original doc agreed I could have both because I told him about this plot." She tipped her head back, thumping it a few times. "What day is it?"

"Tuesday." He saw her wince. "Why?"

"I got captured on a Thursday and a few of the kids were taking their GED's this weekend, and I should've been there to cheerlead and stuff." She looked at him. "If you can get us out of here, do it," she said quietly. "I'll gladly stab people as we go too." He nodded once, curling up some. "Relax, James, even if I was needy I wouldn't jump you. It'd give them happies and I'm not into giving the bad guys good thoughts."

He nodded. "All right. Are you sick?"

"Bit sore. Some cramping. Thankfully I think my period's stopped for a bit." He nodded. "Just be cool, James. They can't do anything for months and triggering you too early would probably get at least one of us dead. We have time." He nodded, relaxing again so he could listen to the hallway.

"They heard."

"Good. They still can't do anything." She smirked and waved at the doctor that stomped in there. "What?"

"You're on the pill and an IUD?" he demanded.

"Yeah. Because I was avoiding this. And it can take nearly a year for the pill to get out of your system and you to regain normal egg discharge." He slapped her and she shrugged. "I had worse in high school from my girlfriend." He growled and Bucky hopped up. Darcy stood up too. "No, let me. They don't think you're going to do anything, Bucky." She moved closer to the doctor, sneering at him. "You still won't win. Because if I have a kid, it'll be mine, not yours. The balls are genetic and you trying to brainwash me won't work. My mind's not going to take it. Therefore you'll have to train him to fuck a lifeless body on a bed on life support." He stepped back, still glaring. "You have not a clue of what you've stepped into."

"There's others who wanted you out of the way."

"Yay, you're working with the slimy frat boy who couldn't keep his hands to himself. You know, my suit against him still goes on and my estate's already guarded in case I disappear due to you guys or him. I'm pretty damn certain that Captain America will follow along with my wishes for my charity work. He's kinda like that." The doctor glared. She stared at him. "You're not shit and you're annoying me. Leave. Now." She pointed. He tried to punch her in the stomach but she blocked it and threw him against the wall. Guards came in to protect him and make them get away from him. "Aww, look, you need bullies to protect you," she sneered. "How sweet, you have friends."

He glared. "I can find another one that'll work just as well."

"If that were true, you wouldn't have waited this long to pull it, douchebag. A year and you couldn't find someone else. Guess you've got issues there too." The doctor tried to hit her and a guard tried to hold her in place but James hit the guard and the doctor ran off before he hit him too. The guards dragged the injured one out. She looked at him. "So," she said dryly. "What do you do for fun in this thing?" She sat back down.

"Not a lot. Swear at my own stupidity."

Darcy nodded. "Yeah, they knocked on the door and I thought it was an actual agent. Thankfully I taught my kids how to use social media."

One of the guards sneered from outside. "We've taken all copies of that video down, Lewis."

"You can't really remove everything from the internet, douchebro. People make copies of those things. Including my lawyer as soon as he saw it." She looked at Bucky. "If I die and my kid lives, there's provisions made," she said quietly. He nodded once, grimacing. "Being practical and all that."

"I understand why but most dames would be sobbing and stuff."

"Most dames don't hit the guy grabbing their ass and nearly shoot them." She smiled at him. "We're going to stay practical, James. Totally, coldly practical. Even if they force it with drugs, it's practical to save ourselves." He nodded, grimacing again. "Not that I might not want to ride your fun stick on the outside but that's a real thing, not in here where it's a threat."

He looked easier. "Thanks, doll."

"You're welcome. Are you okay? Any injuries?" He shook his head but relaxed against the wall. They didn't have anything soft to sit or sleep on. The cell was chilly so they'd have to huddle together for warmth. Being practical was good, he could focus on that and not on her. He had to get them out of here. "Steve and them?" he asked quietly.

Darcy shrugged. "Probably heading off to some sort of battle that's a diversion."

"Damn it," he muttered. She patted him on the wrist, getting a dirty look for it. She stared back. "Fine."

"You're pretty mean but that's just how you are at this moment, James," she said quietly. "We can talk if you want to." He shook his head, looking at the door. "With our luck they have a telepath on staff."

"That would suck," he agreed. "It'd definitely ruin plans."

She nodded. "That's probably why they'd do it." He nodded, pulling her closer. She rested against his arm. It was a good time for a rest. They couldn't harass them for a bit. It'd be nothing more than annoying and the head doc needed to regain his masculinity first.


Clint answered his phone the second time it rang. The first he had been busy shooting at aliens. "What's happened, Katie?" He listened. "What do you mean they managed to kidnap the doctor!" he complained. Scott stared at him, glaring a tiny bit. "Yeah, private bodyguards wouldn't have let you help. Hey, tracking where he was taken is great. A moving...that makes some sense. Moving them inside the back of an eighteen wheeler is harder to take out." He considered it. "If you can. I have no idea. We have most everyone with us, girly girl." He bit his lip, then nodded. "If they're willing to help, tell them I said thank you. Yeah, we've got at least another week here. If this was a diversion it's a really good one. Aliens, yup. Thanks. Keep me informed even if it's my voicemail. Good luck." He hung up and looked at Scott. "They have them in some sort of mobile lab unit inside the back of an eighteen wheeler."

"Harder to find," Scott said with a nod. "Do we know anything else so far?"

"Not yet but Katie's got my phonebook and she's calling a few of my old friends to see if they've heard." Steve stomped into the room. "So far they think they're fine. The doctor did get kidnaped." Steve winced but nodded. "Kate said that they tracked where he was dropped off to a mobile tractor trailer setup."

"That's going to be really hard to pinpoint," Steve complained, staring at him.

Clint smiled, calling someone. "It's me, I'm calling in that favor you owe me because it's for Darcy and it'll be a battle," he said. He got an irritated grunt. "HYDRA has her to breed her to Barnes. They're in some sort of tractor trailer setup. Just got the doc that'll have to do her needed surgery. Yeah, that pretty brunette with the boobs, that's Darcy, Wade. Yeah, her, the one you bonded over Queen songs and margaritas with." He smirked as he paced a bit. "Yup, them. Some sort of a mobile setup. Please. Just let us know. We're in the north of England. No clue but you know people who know people who can listen too, Wade. Thanks, man. Yeah, she'll probably even give you a kiss in thanks. If you want her to grope you, you've gotta ask her yourself, Wade. Thanks, man." He hung up, rubbing his forehead. "Sometimes Wade's a bit weirder than usual."

"Sword guy?" Steve asked, looking confused. Clint nodded. "Why ask him?"

"He's well plugged into the merc's network so he'll hear things. He can call others who'll hear things."

"Oh, that's great then. Tell him I said thank you?"

"I can do that. I don't have one number that would be great but he's at home as far as I know. Wade can get word to him and he knows most everything that goes on down south by New Orleans."

"They'll need a port," Scott agreed. "They can't brainwash them into thinking it's right after the war in the US. Too much technology. So the easiest place is...." He looked at Clint.

"Eastern europe," he said. "Plenty of rural farm land, not quite as technological as the US in some areas. Some are downright almost Amish with their levels of tech in farming villages. So they'll have to move that shipping container they're in somehow over there without them realizing it. And without anyone else realizing it," Clint said with a nod.

"Would a ship do that?" Steve asked. "Or would flying them be easier? They could gas them while they're in transit."

"Could be," Steve agreed. "They can't have a full troop because a convoy would be noticeable."

Scott nodded. "So a few thugs, the doctor, the trailer's set up to be self contained." Steve nodded. "So the major shipping points where they could move a trailer is?"

"New York, there's a few all the way down the coast. New Orleans, a few in Texas," Clint said. "Most of the mercs are in major cities so they'd be nearer to the ports to hear it going on. Because we know Darcy's not going to be quiet about being kidnaped."

"Thanks," Steve said. "I worry about them." He walked off frowning.

"Steve, if they get them set up, they're probably coming for you next," Scott warned, looking at him. "Because Bucky from back then would've expected you two to live in a shared household with your dames."

"Yeah, they would have," he agreed with a sigh at the end. "But they can't get Peggy."

"Doesn't mean they can't convince you Peggy died, because your subconscious would accept that, and that you moved on with a cute dame you met overseas," Stark said as he came in. "We know more?"

"They're in some sort of eighteen wheeler that's renovated," Scott said. "The surgeon got taken." Stark winced but nodded. "We're thinking they're going to have to ship them somewhere that could look more like the post-war era."

"So probably parts of Africa or Asia," Stark said.

"Eastern europe," Clint corrected. "They didn't serve in the Pacific part of the war, Stark. Why would they retire over there?"

"Point. And Africa's probably not going to be too safe." Steve nodded, hitting a wall a few times. "Cap, calm down. We'll do a search for them. We can find them. Even if they tried to trigger him again or tried to revert him to the old Barnes he'll be fine. We know how to reverse it."

"And if they make it and knock Darcy up?" he demanded, looking at him.

"Darcy said if that happens, it's hers," Clint said. "She'd let him have visitation if he wanted and it wasn't detrimental. When she started to make just in case plans and we figured it out, I asked."

Steve nodded. "That might be okay. I don't know anymore." He walked off to talk to Bruce. "How long do we have before they try to knock her up?" he asked quietly.

"Surgical recovery time is probably about a month at the least," he said. "I had to look it up but it'll have to be laproscopic or it'll cause more scarring. So smaller incisions but the same amount of pain. A lot of healing time."

Scott leaned out. "Clint said Kate found pills in her bedside table when she was looking for her appointment card to find the doctor."

"Birth control?" Bruce guessed. Scott nodded with a smile.

"Then it could be take up to a year to take. It'll take some time to weed that out of her system and there's nothing like dialysis that'll work against it." He smiled slightly. "She's devious."

"She claimed she was going evil," Scott told him. "Clint and I were figuring out how to stop the evil if she went further." He looked at Steve then at Bruce. "Also, if she's gone and we find a kid, she's got provisions in her will," he said more quietly.

Bruce nodded. "She's a sensible young woman most of the time. It figures she made plans."

"When we had to get Bucky from her place they had a talk after I had went to sleep. I heard them talking about it. She asked what their normal operational methods would be and told him...she put it bluntly that he wasn't to make it seem more than what it was. To be bluntly practical about it."

Bruce nodded. "Making it better for them would add intimacy and I doubt that won't hurt her more. And him." Steve nodded once at that, lips pressed together tightly. "Right now, let's see if we can find the moving cell they're in."

"I'm hoping Wade's calling some of his contacts," Clint said as he walked out to join them.

"Sword guy?" Bruce asked. "He gave the Other Guy a headache."

"Yeah but he's a merc and he knows most of the mercs, and they know people too."

"Point. Well, let's hope they hear soon so we can finish this and go save them." He went to look at the biological samples he had taken from the aliens.


Wade Wilson, better known as Deadpool, called someone who hung up on him. "Quit," he said when he tried again. "Barton had me call," he said at the third attempt. "He's searching for a friend that got taken by HYDRA but they're mobile," he said at the fourth attempt. "Yes, that Barton. You know that dishy looking dame that was working with Thor's sweetie? Yeah, the brunette with the scarves. Her. HYDRA apparently wants to use her to create their future master race. All we know is she's been snatched, the film's online.

"We know they're in something mobile. They have the doc that she'll need to fix something that's going to stop their plans. No clue," he admitted. "I can give you his female half's number," he offered. "Yeah, that Hawkeye. She's cute. She's babysitting Clint's dog too. Please. Barton's so worried he's nearly missing shots wherever they're handling a huge issue of aliens. Thanks, Remy. I know he'd say the same thing. Yeah, she's not that sweet. Look up Darcy Lewis. That's her use name apparently.

"Yeah, the lady that nearly killed that politician. Her. Yup. Same chick. No idea why HYDRA fixated on her but Kate told me that they've been trying for a while according to Barton's notes. No, that new film's from where she was tutoring some kids getting their GED's. Oh, that one. Yeah, that was the idiot she nearly killed, HYDRA, and a few others that wanted her out of the way. She's like the queen of sarcasm when she wants to be but she's the goddess of 'damn' when she's dressed up. Thanks, Remy. Let us know. I agreed I'd help since I'm kinda bored." He hung up and popped his neck with a sigh. "This is so going to suck."

The mercs at the bar with him looked at him. "That lady that took out that slimy ass with the tiny hands got kidnaped by HYDRA?" one demanded.

"From what I got told, somehow they want her bred to Barnes." He looked at them. "They got her from her tutoring some kids in a local library." That got a few nods. "We know they're mobile in some sort of tractor trailer rig. That's all we know." They all nodded. "That's the same chick that Lang was introducing around so they all knew her when something happened. She's not helpless, she's got a tazer too."

"I heard about her having some sort of bra pepper spray system," one of the guys said with a nod at Deadpool. "She's hot but I heard mean."

"Probably," he agreed. "Then again, mean can be fun." He looked at the bartender. "Give me a blowjob." He got handed one and paid for it, lifting the bottom of his mask to slug it back so he could go talk to others.

The mercs called around to see if anyone had heard. One called his bosses in HYDRA but another guy heard him and hit him with the thick beer mug to knock him out then stabbed him. "HYDRA sucks," he slurred at the guy he had killed. "Pity you did too." The others in the bar got happy that someone had finally won the deadpool so they could start another one.


Bucky got handed Darcy after her surgery. "She's gonna infect if you don't give her what she needs, then all your plans are gone."

"She got antibiotics," the doctor that was in charge sneered. "She'll be fine." He walked off. He wanted to pump the nicer doctor's mind about his plans before they killed him. The truck shuddered and he stared. "What's happened?" he called.

"Road block up ahead," one of the guards called back. "State police looking for someone."

"They won't get in here." He went to the lab to look over the pictures they had taken after the surgery but before she had been sealed back up. Her uterus looked in perfect condition. He looked around then at the thug. "That surgeon?"

"Bathroom, sir." He pointed. "He's got some sort of calming down ritual after surgeries. He can't escape from there."

The doctor nodded when they started to move again. Apparently they hadn't wanted to search this truck and find the fake back with the fake boxes.

Outside, the doctor was panting on the side of the highway. He made himself get up and ran toward traffic, waving his limp hands at the cars. "Help!" he called. One of the cars stopped. "Help, I was kidnaped and escaped. That trailer," he said with a point. "Has other hostages."

"I'm sure we can handle that for you," the agent said. The doctor stared at him then ran off. "Great. He lost his hostage," he muttered, parking and heading after him. Unfortunately not before he ran into the stop and search area. "Fuck," he muttered.

The doctor ran into a cop car and grabbed the officer that turned to look at him with his good hand. "I was kidnaped. The trailer that you let pass by has at least a few other hostages. I'm a ob/gyn from New York City and I got taken to do a surgery so someone in HYDRA could force a pregnancy."

The officer helped him into the car, getting an ambulance for him. "Sir, what's your name?" he asked. The doctor calmed down and told him. "Do you know anything about the trailer?"

He pointed. "I got him stopped right after I managed to escape but he was going to call them." The officer looked then ran after that guy, his fellow officers mostly going after him to help. The doctor looked at the paramedic coming his way. "My wrist is broken and one of my fingers is too I think. I managed to escape through the ventilation system between the inner and outer trailer systems."

"Okay, that's fine, sir. What's your name and do you have any allergies?"

"I'm Dr. Santisburg. I'm an ob/gyn surgeon. I was kidnaped so someone in HYDRA could pull off their breeding plan. Their chosen mother had a ruptured uterus."

The officer still with him stared at him. "Did you know that hostage before then?"

"She had just been referred to me to fix it. My partner and I were the two best in the city to fix problems like that without further complications," he said quietly. "My wife has got to be frantic."

"She reported you missing and told the police up there what you had been told by that young woman," the officer assured him, patting him on the arm. "How many hostages do they have?"

"At least two, one of each gender. One of them was the guy on the tv at that battle in DC a few years back. I saw his arm when I came to get her for surgery under armed guard." He stared at him. "She's got some healing to do but I was allowed to talk to her first about the upcoming surgery and she told me it would give them more time before they tried to force the breeding and I was not to risk my own life to save hers."

"Do you know her name?" the officer asked.

"Lewis. Darcy Lewis. She's the lady that smacked that politician."

"Oh, okay. Why would they want her?"

"I asked and she told me she'd been avoiding them now for over a year. They just managed it the other day. She said they took her on a Thursday and I got warned a Thursday night. I have no idea what day it is."

"It's Friday, Doctor," the paramedic said. "Can I see your hand?" He let him grope it. "I think you're right. A broken wrist and finger. Some good scrapes. We can get you to an ER so you can call home." He nodded, letting himself be helped up. A few officers came back. "We're taking him to the ER."

"I'm going with you," one of the officers said. "So we can get a full statement. Hopefully we can stop that truck."

"He said one of them was the guy that was fighting with Captain America in DC a few years back," the first officer told him. "And the lady that smacked that politician."


"She's been avoiding it for a year," the doctor told him. "She told me I was not to risk myself to save her. The surgery would give her extra time before they tried anything. She needed it, it would've killed her soon."

"Cooperative hostages don't get killed," the officer agreed. He climbed into the ambulance with the paramedic and the guy on the bed. "She'll be fine. We'll be putting out a call to find them. Do you remember anything about the trailer?"

"It had an inner and outer compartments. I made it out through the bathroom ventilation grill to the small space between then out the back door. I rolled into the grass. The door had some sort of magnetic close because it wasn't flapping when I hit the ground."

"Okay. Good to know. We can look for that. Silver?"

"White. Blue trim. Yellow lock bars."

"Got it." He called that in as the ambulance took off. The officer looked out the window then at the paramedic next to him. "This isn't the way to the nearest ER."

"We're taking him to the better one, Officer. He's a doctor, he'll need good orthopedic care for his hands."

"I'm sure he will." He called that in. The paramedic tried to shoot him with something but the doctor stabbed him with his own IV needle.

"I hated learning those lessons when I did the National Guard for college money," the doctor said quietly. "I don't like to waste lives."

"Me either, Doctor. Me either." He went up to stop the driver by pulling his gun on him and making him pull over. More officers showed up but he only let the one he trusted come in to handle things. That one he knew wasn't HYDRA. He had killed two of their unit who turned into their soldiers. There was another one in the responding officers but the shift supervisor shot him when he tried to kill the rest of them. They let the agents they knew from working with them show up to gather the doctor to take to an ER and handle putting out the call on that trailer and the hostages.


Darcy moaned, blinking awake. "I hate anaesthesia." She tried to sit up and held her stomach, laying back on Bucky's thigh. "Never mind." He stroked over her hair. "What happened while I was out?"

"The surgeon got away," he said quietly. "We're in a trailer of some sort."

"Great." She blinked up at him. "Did they give me anything more?"

"No. They tried to say they implanted an explosive in case you got too mouthy but I reminded him that would ruin his plan. Apparently whatever serum they used isn't totally compatible with everyone. You've got the lucky DNA."

"That explains why me," she said. She yawned. "Thank you for watching out for me."

"It's nothing, Darcy. We need you stronger." She nodded, going back to sleep. He tested her forehead, frowning at the warmth. He'd keep track of it in case she got an infection. When one of the thugs stomped in he glared. "She's running a fever and she'll need water and food to heal," he growled. "Unless you want to waste his idea?" The thug threw a thermos at him with a smirk then left.

Bucky sniffed it and sighed. Drugged. He dipped his finger in to taste some, wincing at what it did to him. "It'll be at least a month before she can do that," he said quietly. He put it aside. They could handle it.

"If that's the same thing they tried to drug me with last time, you'll have to wear it out," she muttered. "I wore out a vibrator, made myself sore, and then had a helpful person who gave me an antidote then helped me finish wearing it out." She blinked up at him. "If you have to, I don't care and I'm not going to watch, Bucky. You do what you gotta do so we both survive."

"You're going to infect."

She nodded. "I've never had any surgery where I didn't get at least a small infection. Even oral surgery to remove my wisdom teeth." He nodded. "Just handle it. If it gets in my hair I'll figure out how to get it out of there." He snorted but pushed her head back down and covered her eyes. "Okay." She drifted off again.

Bucky could handle this for both of them. He was not going to give in to petty ploys like this. The Winter Soldier was stronger and tougher than that. He had lived through worse than this when they were testing that drug on him.


Steve made it back to the US first, on a stretcher because he had been shot in the upper stomach by one of the aliens. He was in the hospital, wincing as he tried to sit up against nurses' orders, when someone stomped into his room. "Who're you?" he demanded.

She smiled. "I'm Kate. The other Hawkeye." He relaxed and nodded. "We have some news on Darcy. We have no idea where she is. They managed to lose the trailer." She handed over the notes she had. "They're definitely heading down south toward Texas or Louisiana."

"Clint said he knew someone down there."

"I wish I did," she said dryly. "Then I'd call them."

"Clint's on his way back today. They just finished the clean up."

"Good." She patted him on the hands. "Get better, Rogers. The world needs more guys with manners because most of the guys these days have none. Even when their mothers tried." She went to call Clint. "She's going south. The trailer got lost by the Georgia State PD," she reported as she walked. "They reported that highway was heading toward Louisiana and Texas." She hung up. Clint had voicemail for things like this. She got onto the elevator and left, mentally swearing at the problems. She had to take Lucky out too. Plus check on Darcy's apartment. By now they surely had her kitchen done. Though it looked wrong to her untrained eye.


Darcy blinked awake, staring at the man leaning over her. "Who're you?" she asked in a hoarse whisper. "Water?" He helped her drink some. "James?"

"He's safe, Cher. We need to get you out of here but you're in too bad of shape to not wake first."

"Just get me out of here please. I'll gladly let you grope me later for it but damn I want out of here."

"A charming offer but not one Remy will take you up on."

She grinned. "Most guys would. I keep running into people who want my boobs so I have this bra system with pepper spray. Wish I had it when I was taken." She got helped up and held her stomach. "Ow. Okay, let's go. I'm tougher than this and you'll have to stab people for me."

"They're all unconscious and probably begging God for mercy." He walked her out, helping hold her up. James got free of those helping him and came to help her by picking her up. "She yours?" Remy asked.

"No. They wanted her to be. She's a friend. She's infected, we need to get her to an ER."

"I know a doctor. He can come when I call. We'll get you somewhere safe, James." He led his team of cousins off into the night so they could disappear. The legal ones could handle HYDRA minions when they showed up from his cousin's call. One of them stayed back to make sure they showed up promptly. Remy got them to a safehouse and called in a doctor he knew of. It took a while but he showed up with antibiotics in liquid form and some things for them to eat and wear. "Thank you."

"Welcome. They need it." He looked at James. He was looking slightly overprotective and kinda panicked. "I need to examine her. What sort of surgery was it?"

"She said her IUD punctured her uterus. They kidnaped a surgeon to fix it so HYDRA could have our kids."

"Okay. How long ago was the surgery?"

"Four days. She said she's never had a surgery that didn't infect. Even tooth removal ones."

"That's not that unusual." He looked at her stomach, nodding. "She had an excellent surgeon."

"I told him not to risk himself," Darcy said, moving some. "Ow, please quit. I don't have my tazer on me but I will kick and bite."

The doctor smiled at her. "It's good you're spunky. It means you'll heal, young lady. I'm not with HYDRA."

"Oh thank you, God," she moaned. "Antibiotics please? And maybe something for the ripping pains?"

"I can do that. Open." She did and he measured out a dose of both liquids, letting her suck them off the spoon. He handed them to James. "One spoonful of the antibiotic every four hours. The other stuff every six. Even if it wears out it's real strong." He nodded. "Good boy. You injured?"

"That wouldn't have served their purposes. They only mildly played with things like a drug that caused lust when they gave us some soup."

"Same stuff that they got me with when I was in Chicago. Coulson or May knows what it was and I got some sort of antidote." Darcy waved a hand and yawned. "How long before I can go home? I have to check on the kids I tutor."

"A few days at the least, young lady, and I need you flat on your back. Your friend can watch you if he wants." She nodded, looking up at him. He nodded back, staring at the doctor. "We can call someone to get you home quietly. Who was this stupid?"

"HYDRA," James said. "I was their asset once."

"I remember that news, son." He patted him on the metal shoulder. "You're safer now. There's people they don't want to go up against."

"I'm going to be one of those," Darcy said, nodding some. The drugs were making her feel light headed. "I probably already piss them off by avoiding them. I lasted going on two years."

"That's a good thing," Remy said. He tucked them in, looking at the doctor. "I can call up there."

"The news I heard on the way over said that team's on the way home and half are seriously injured this time. Call some mutual friends." Remy nodded, going to do that. He smiled at her. "You'll be fine, little one." She nodded, yawning again. "Good. You rest." He left, pointing at the food then giving Bucky a pointed look. He nodded he'd get her to eat something soon. The doctor left, listening to Remy try to talk to someone. "Agents or otherwise?"

"Remy not know any SHIELD people worth anything," he said bluntly.

"Point. You know others who might know one."

"They won't like Wade much either."

"Call Barton," Bucky called. "She's friends with him and still has numbers."

"Remy can do that but he's knocked out. Natasha became a growly spider."

"She hates me anyway," Darcy called. She wobbled out to look at him, then took the phone and dialed a number from memory. "Matt? It's Darcy. I got saved with Bucky. I'm sick as shit and somewhere safe. Can you let others know and thank them for helping me and Clint? Thanks, man." She hung up. "His office voicemail." She wobbled back to bed and climbed back in, making Bucky move. "Go eat. You haven't eaten in days and it's already affecting your weight. I'm going to sleep the sleep of the heavily drugged."

"I can watch over you," Bucky said.

Darcy blinked at him. "If you want to, go ahead, but eat! Before you end up sick too." He nodded, settling down to eat most of the food that was brought. He saved the soft things for her. Remy brought in some rolls and left with a small grin. She was definitely spunky.


Kate got met on top of a building by a guy wearing a mask. "Hey. News?" she asked hopefully. "Clint's still unconscious and Natasha's being a bitch about anyone seeing him."

"She left a message, sounded pretty drugged up, but she said she's rescued and safe and so is Bucky."

"YES!" Kate cheered, jumping up and down. "Finally, something good happens!" He smiled and left her to it. "Thanks."


"You might warn someone that she's going to sue the guys that screwed up her kitchen. They somehow put upper cabinets on the floor with a really ugly countertop on it that I know she wouldn't use and no upper cabinets. I checked earlier."

"I know people who'll love to help her with that," he agreed, smiling back at the perky young thing. He remembered being her age.

Kate found what she was needing to hit and shot an arrow at the asshole, in the butt too because she was feeling generous. That let her go rescue the SHIELD agent that was hostage. She brought her to the same hospital the Avengers were hiding in, handing her to the nurse. "She's an agent. She was hostage for over two weeks. I think her name's May. Last name is May. Someone asked me to deliver her."

"Thank you, miss. We can take it from here."

"Sure." She walked off, listening in case the nurse turned out to be a problem. She called others to come get their newest admit.

Kate walked off the elevator on the Avengers unit, nodding at an agent she knew. She paused in front of another one. "May's downstairs." He ran off to check on her. She went into the captain's room, staring at him until he blinked at her. "They're safe. She called and said they're safe." He smiled and drifted off again. "Must be good drugs." He nodded. She smiled and went to tell the other fussy sort. She could hear Clint complaining his dog was nicer to him than Natasha was. "Thankfully he loves my couch and pizza just as much as yours," she said from the doorway.

Clint stared at her. "You have news. You're perky."

"I rescued the SHIELD lady. She's in the ER."

"Is that why you're perky?" Natasha asked dryly.

"No, I'm perky because I'm not a bitch to my friends," she shot back. "She's safe. She called Matt and she's safe somewhere with him."

"Thank you," Clint sighed, smiling and relaxing. He winced, holding his arm that was cramping. Kate came in to work on the knots. "You're good at that. You should do that instead of this job, Katie."

"Shut up, Clint. Before I feed your dog something to give him the runs the night you get home."

"Don't be mean to him," he complained. "He's a good dog."

"He's a very good dog," she agreed, smiling at him. "I like Lucky more than I like you most of the time. That's why I steal him for my morning runs." She got the cramp out and stared at him. "Better?"

"Much. Thanks." He kissed her on the forehead. "Anything else I should hear?"

"She's going to freak the fuck out about her kitchen being messed up."

"They did?"

"Yeah, it even looks wrong to me. They *so* screwed up and the landlord came to check since I was there and he knew she was missing. He saw it and told me why it was wrong and moaned she was going to freak the fuck out."


"I warned Matt she was going to sue someone."

"Probably. Anything else we know beyond she's safe?"

"She called Matt's voicemail."

"Why not my phone or Scott's?" he demanded.

"She might not remember the number since you're on speed dial and when I tried to call to tell you I got the wicked bitch over there." She head-nodded at Natasha. "She growled at me for daring to try to let you know."

Clint glared at Natasha, who huffed off. He stared at her. "It's complicated."

"Natasha's jealous," she said. "She's a woman and having a womanly moment of jealousy because you're Natasha's bestie and Darcy's getting close to you. It's how we work sometimes, Clint. Trust me, I am a woman." She stood back up straighter. "Now, you, back in bed. Right now." He huffed but climbed back into the bed. "Good. Let me go finish my patrol." She climbed out the window and out the fire escape, waving at the nice webbed guy she had met and figured out who he was. He wasn't as big of a prick as she thought he would be.

Clint shook his head, staring at the hallway. "You know, I can have other friends and it doesn't hurt our friendship," he said quietly. Natasha glared at him but stayed out there. "Fine. We can talk once I'm out of here." She walked off shaking her head. Clint shook his own head and rested again. He hated hospitals. He spent way too much time in them. But at least Darcy was okay. He could relax about one stressful thing in his life.


Darcy woke up when someone opened the door, staring at the woman there. "Who're you?" she mumbled.

"I'm Marie," she said, coming in to test her forehead with her gloved hand. "You're warm, sweetie."

"Infection. I'm being good and taking the drugs." Bucky woke up with a flinch. "Hey. Calm down. I know about this one. Someone told me about her." He stared at her then checked his watch, grabbing her meds. "Thank you, James."

"Welcome," he said quietly. He helped her take them both then looked at the young woman. "Who're you?"

"Marie," she said with a smile. "Remy sent for me in case she needed more girlish help."

"Not having my period yet," Darcy admitted. "Just a few days post surgery and I was having it the day they kidnaped me."

"That happens. You rest. Want some food soon?"

"Please," James said. "And weapons? Just in case?"

"If they come in here, they've made one hell of an enemy since the Queen Assassin owns this house," she said, smiling at him. "She's flirting with Remy right now but said she enjoyed guests and hated HYDRA already." He nodded. "I'll see what I can do about weapons though. I know you're still paranoid."

"Telepath?" he guessed.

She giggled, shaking her head. "Not my skill, sweetie." She went to get them some soup and brought it back, her making sure she ate first so he wouldn't be paranoid about her poisoning them. "There, you eat and rest some more. We'll get you removed up north again pretty shortly." She left, going to talk to Remy. "She's resting again. He's eating," she told him. "He wanted weapons just in case."

Remy nodded. "James is paranoid for a good reason. We can get them up north. She's got a place in New York."

Darcy came wobbling out, hugging him and Marie then smiling at the woman on the throne. "Thank you for your help, ma'am."

"You would've made a fine one of mine, dear."

Darcy shook her head but was smiling. "My mother taught me to care for people. Taking them out was only if I had to."

The Queen of Assassins laughed but nodded. "The world benefits from that approach as well, Miss Lewis."

"Thank you. I can call someone to arrange for us to get up north to New York."

"We can fly you out," Remy said. "Fake ID's and all."

Darcy shook her head. "I have a SHIELD file or two. Plus I'm pretty well known after having to deal with the idiot slimeball politician. It'd be safer if we went up in a camper so we could hide."

He nodded. "Not a bad idea. I have no idea how to get one of those."

"I call my step-aunt and have her rent me one. Then I'd need someone to drive because I sure can't and James needs to stay out of view too." He stalked out, picking her up and carrying her off. "I'm fine, James. We're working on how to get back to New York."

"I shouldn't. It'll cause more problems."

She swatted him on the head. "Shut up. I can't make the trip myself and Steve wants to nag you for a few hours, then you can escape." He snorted but looked amused. "Frustrated Steve draws. Worried Steve paces and doesn't eat."

"Damn it, the punk's screwed up," he muttered.

"Yup. And somehow when he's worried he jogs twenty-something hours a day by gossip I've heard. So you need to come up for a few days."

"Fine. Nag."

"Yes I do." She smiled. "I honed it on Jane." He snorted, tucking her back in and went back to talk to those people to see how he could help get them home. He was tired of being helpless. He had to do something he could control.


Darcy met up with someone on her stoop five days later, leaning on the railing as she looked at the girl playing with the dog. "Should I worry that you're hanging out here instead of next door?" she asked.

"Darcy!" She hopped up to hug her. "No. Clint's upstate and they're fighting again so I'm protecting Lucky." She smiled. "Until you got here." She pulled back to look at her. "You look like shit."

"I'm coming off the infection. Is that doctor okay?"

"He's good. He spilled far and wide about what happened and why he was taken and how you ordered him not to risk his life for you. Some people thought it meant you were going with it, most don't."

"There's always people like that, Kate. Most of them are men."

"Mostly this time too." She looked at her. "Don't yell and scream about the kitchen. I've been working on it with your landlord and we have people for you to call since you're home. And your lawyer's already suing them."

"They didn't put in my kitchen?"

"Not all of it and they screwed up what they did do." Darcy winced but nodded. "C'mon, let's go upstairs. Lucky, inside time." He was growling at a guy staring at them. "Oh, great. You guys."

Darcy looked at him. "I'm just now home from being kidnaped and I'm pretty homicidal. Go. Away. Please." He stepped back, holding up his hands. "What do you want?" she sighed.

"You're that mean chick with the tazer."

"Yes I am."

"You got it now?"

"Do you really think my kidnapers brought it with me?" He smirked. She pulled a gun instead. "I picked a little something up on the way home." He nodded and strolled off. She leaned on Kate to get upstairs, Lucky against her free side. "I hate most men right now," she decided.

"Don't blame ya there," Kate agreed. "Most of them suck. You know a few who don't."

"Yeah but they're taken."

"Point." She got her inside. Darcy paused to stare at her kitchen and moaned. "We're working on it."

"Where's the other half of my cabinets!"

"They decided you were probably dead so they kept them to sell," Kate said. "Your lawyer knows. He found them in their workshop area when he went to yell for you." Darcy sighed, nodding as she trudged to the shower and then into bed. Kate settled next to her with the dog. "Guard duty," she quipped. She took a picture of Darcy and sent it to Clint's phone. She got back a terse 'tomorrow' and shrugged. "He's in a bad mood." She showed Darcy the message.

"That's a Stark message."

Kate smiled and sent a second one saying that if Clint was turning into Stark, she'd have to do an exorcism. She got back a 'not funny' and 'tell Darcy to rest'. She showed her. Darcy nodded through a yawn and fell asleep there. Lucky shifted over to get cuddled so that was sweet of him. Kate sat up reading something from Darcy's shelves while she watched over her. She heard the door open and looked out there. "Crap, who is that," she muttered, going to check. She ran into Steve Rogers. "She's back."

"Good! Is she okay? And is Bucky with her?"

"I didn't ask that part." He walked around her and she shot him in the butt, making him scream. "Captain America has a bounce worthy ass that people would pay for. You have flab. So I doubt you're him, dude."

Darcy blinked awake, sitting up to stare at him. "That's that evil dick that was after Pepper." She laid down, petting Lucky. "You're a good boy, Lucky. Thank you for the puppy cuddles. The auntie feels like crap." He lapped her and she quit holding him so tightly. He relaxed, she fell back asleep, and Kate took pictures for Clint. Including of the guy on the floor.

Upstate, Stark glared at the phone that was going off again. He stared at the new picture then at the guy across the room, holding up the phone. "You have a twin?"

"No," he said, coming over to take the phone. "Isn't that the guy that was going after Pepper?"

Stark snatched it back, nodding. "It is. Great. Well, Bishop shot him in the ass for her." He forwarded that picture to Pepper, making her shriek. He forwarded the earlier one and that got a happier noise but she was going to stomp on the guy that was bothering people she knew. "Pep's mad," he quipped. "She'll go handle that and Lewis."

"She was kidnaped, Tony," Steve reminded him.

"She let them do the surgery."

"They would've killed the doctor," he shot back.

Clint walked in. "Steve's right, it was to save his life and hers." He snatched his phone, staring at it. "Huh." He walked off texting Kate, who quipped funny things back. "She's still really sick, she's clutching Lucky like he's stuffed. I need to go save my dog." He left, going back to the city. Natasha was still huffy but he couldn't cure that for her and she wouldn't talk to him.

Stark shook his head. "You sure she didn't have plans?"

"If she had wanted Bucky she could've jumped him any time he showed up in her apartment while triggered," Steve said, sounding bitter. "I'm very sure she didn't want him, Stark." He walked off. "Aren't you supposed to be close to her? Or is that the liquor talking?"

Stark stomped off to talk to Bruce, who told him Steve was right. If he had been in Darcy's place you go along to stay alive and you try to keep the other hostages alive as well. It's how people were taught to handle hostage situations. You didn't make waves and you escaped at the first chance. Stark went to sulk in his lab instead.


Clint walked into Darcy's place just after dawn. He had paused to shower and change at his own. Lucky barked so he went to save his poor dog. Who was between the two napping women and being cuddled. "Aww, are you being girl cuddled," he said with a grin. Lucky barked and nipped Darcy's hand gently, getting free of her so he could run over to bounce around his master and get his rightful pets. Clint settled in to pet his poor dog. "Did they nap on you? You're a good friend, Lucky." He got lapped and his dog settled next to him on the couch. Barnes came in off the fire escape. Clint stared at him. "You okay?" he asked quietly.

"I'm good. I'm watching over her. And the young thing."

"That's Kate, she sometimes takes my call sign and bow."

He nodded. "Stevie?"

"Upstate at the facility."


"He'll be here soon. Stark pissed him off earlier and he's friends with Darcy too."

"Thanks. I'm..." He pointed. Clint nodded so he went back outside. It was safer and easier out there.

Clint relaxed, idly stroking the dog while going through his phone to erase things he didn't need. He was running out of room for new numbers.

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