Ellie was bored out of her mind. Now that she was no longer an agent (a technicality since she was in the Avengers) she didn't go on normal missions until Fury was convinced of her mental stability. Proving that she wasn't going to fall apart required countless hours of therapy and monitoring.
"How are you feeling?" Ellie's therapist, Dr. Brown, asked.
"Fine. More like myself every day." Ellie said, tapping her fingers together. "I'd like to go on missions."
"Have you looked at the ring yet?" Dr. Brown watched Ellie's face fall slightly.
"No." Ellie said.
"I've told you that it would help give you closure to look at it. It's been nine months since he died. Aren't you ready to move on?"
"I have moved on. I told you I'm feeling better." Ellie said.
"Then why haven't you looked at it?" Dr. Brown asked.
"I don't know. I just haven't." Ellie stammered.
"May I have it?" Dr. Brown extended her hand, waiting for Ellie to drop the box she always carried into the doctor's hand.
Ellie reluctantly pulled the box from her jacket and placed it on the table in front of her, ignoring the therapist. Dr. Brown sat back in her chair and watched her patient as she stared at the box. She waited a few minutes before she spoke. "I don't have any other appointments today, Ellie. Take your time."
"I don't understand why I have to do this." Ellie didn't look at Dr. Brown.
"It will help you see the last piece of Phil." Ellie flinched at his name. "It'll help you move on and you can go on missions again."
Ellie let out a deep breath and opened the ring box slowly. Resting on the silk inside sat a beautiful solitaire diamond with two rubies on either side of it. She smiled slightly at the ring and lifted it out of the box and just looked at it, a wave of different emotions going through her at once.
"How does it make you feel to have finally looked at it?" Dr. Brown asked.
"It'd be preferred."
"Like a weight has been lifted off my chest." Ellie said, unclasping her necklace and slipping the ring on the chain, re clasping it around her neck. She felt a little better with the ring around her neck.
"I'll send my report to Director Fury with my recommendation. It will be up to him if you go back in the field." Dr. Brown said, making some notes on a clipboard.
"Thanks." Ellie left the therapist's office and went for a walk. Halfway on her walk to nowhere in particular, she became aware of somebody following her. She took a right turn into an alley and ducked behind a dumpster before her follower saw her do so. Her follower walked carefully down the alley, passing her without seeing her until Ellie grabbed his throat and pinned him against the wall. She recognized him a second later. "What the hell Stark?"
"It was just a test." Tony chuckled, brushing off his suit when Ellie released him. "Just seeing if all your skills are up to snuff."
"They are." Ellie confirmed.
"Glad we got that cleared up." Tony said. "There's something I've been meaning to ask you."
"What?" Ellie followed him to his car and got in next to him.
"You really can't get drunk?"
Ellie laughed. "That's right."
"Right. Well, I've been working on something that I'd like you to try." Tony handed her a bottle and gestured for her to take a drink.
She sniffed the contents of the bottle, cringing her nose. At Tony's further insistence, she took a drink. "It tastes like gasoline."
"I know, right?" Tony snickered at her disgusted look.
"Then why make me drink it?"
"I want to see what happens."
"Just because I'm not Phil, doesn't mean that I won't tase you." Ellie threatened. "In this case, I'm the taser."
"Simmer down Electra." Tony said, glancing out the window.
"You know, for a stickler for details like yourself, you seem to forget I'm not an electric power."
"It's all energy." Tony shrugged. "I don't think the press cares either."
Ellie groaned. The newspapers had christened her "Electra", much to her dismay. She didn't want a hero name, she didn't want to be called a hero. She didn't believe in them. The car stopped and she opened the car door. "This isn't my apartment, Tony."
"Actually, it is." Tony smirked as he glanced up at Stark Tower. "The rest of the group thinks it's beneficial for us all to be in one place."
"What about Cap?" Ellie asked with a quirked eyebrow. Steve and Tony didn't exactly get along.
"We're still working on him." Tony admitted.
"Thanks but no thanks." Ellie said, turning to leave.
"Wait!" Tony called after her. He tossed the liquor bottle to her and she caught it easily. "I expect a drunken phone call later. Make it funny if you can."
"I'll do my best." Ellie said in a sarcastic, but kind, voice. "See you later, Stark."
Ellie had to admit that she was curious about the alcohol Tony had given her as she unlocked her apartment and tossed her jacket on her bed. Her curiosity got the best of her and she poured a portion of the alcohol into a glass. She did notice that the gasoline taste seemed to lessen the more she drank. She also noticed that she was a little more giggly and dialed Tony's number.
"Tony, you're a genius." Ellie said, her words slurring slightly.
"What a lush." Tony chuckled. "You've barely been home for two hours."
"I've never been drunk before." Ellie giggled. "Is it always like this?"
"Until the next morning." Tony said.
"Okay." Ellie stayed quiet for a few minutes. "Well, bye."
She hung up on Tony and poured herself another drink while her other hand dialed a very familiar number.
"You've reached Agent Phil Coulson. Leave a message and I'll get back to you."
For whatever reason, his voicemail and phone number were still active, probably due to Ellie still paying their phone bill. Right now, drunk Ellie didn't care.
"Phil! Guess what? I'm drunk for the first time ever! Tony figured it out and this is amazing." Ellie was silent for a few seconds as she realized that he would never hear this message. Her voice caught in her throat. "I miss you so much. I don't know how I'm supposed to move on. I...didn't even get to say goodbye." Ellie started to cry into the phone and sniffled. "The answer was yes, by the way. I would've married you in a heartbeat. If there is...any way that you can come home. If by some miracle you hear this, please come back to me."
She hung up the phone and flopped stomach down on her couch, falling asleep in minutes. Meanwhile, Phil accessed his previous voicemail with a few keystrokes and listened to the voicemail Ellie had left. He was curious as to how Tony managed to get her drunk but that was beside the point. His heart broke when he heard her crying and when her message ended, Phil made a call to Director Fury.
"I want her on my team." Phil said bluntly.
"She's not a level 7." Fury countered easily.
"I don't care." Phil said. "You said I could pick my team and I choose her."
"She's just starting to recover." Fury said. "Her therapist has finally cleared her to go back in the field."
Phil pressed a few buttons on his computer and let Fury listen to Ellie's message. "Does that sound like someone who's recovered?"
"She's not level 7." Fury repeated.
"I work better with her and she works better with me." Phil stared at the Director, holding his gaze. "Please."
"Phil, I'm sorry. I really am." Fury said. "But she's part of the Avengers and not a level 7."
Fury left the video chat and Phil sighed, his eyes watering. He had handled it well when he had been told he could never see his soulmate again. He had handled it well when they told his mother he had died. Knowing that Ellie needed him and there was nothing he could do about it—well, that felt like he was being stabbed all over again.
Ellie was abruptly awoken the next morning by Nick Fury shouting in her living room.
"Get up, Agent Johnson." Fury's voice boomed. Ellie rubbed her eyes and sat up on the couch.
"Morning, Director. Do you want some coffee?" Ellie asked with a yawn.
"No. You're going on a mission." Fury said and Ellie smiled. "We have a two man team going into South Ossetia. Agent Victoria Hand hasn't planned an extraction for them and that's where you come in."
"What are the names of the agents?" Ellie asked.
"Agent Grant Ward and Agent Leopold Fitz." Fury said. "Suit up. Your plane leaves in half an hour."
"Yes sir." Ellie put on her uniform and made it to the airfield in twenty minutes. The ride was shorter than she expected or maybe that was just because she was excited to be going back in the field after a long time of being out.
"The agents are going in to disable the Overkill Device." Fury briefed her via comm. "The Device can access any of our weapons and use them against us."
"Let's hope they get the job done." Ellie said.
"Just get those agents home." Fury said.
"Director, who's the commanding officer of their team?" Ellie asked.
"That's classified." Fury said.
Ellie slipped on the mask that Fury had insisted she wear before she was dropped several miles from the extraction zone. When she reached her spot, all she had to do was wait for the signal. She didn't have to wait long when she saw one of them signaling her with their flashlight. Fury told her not to signal back just in case there were hostiles watching. She started to work her way in, using a stun energy blast to knock out any guards that were a threat.
Ward and Fitz were easy enough to find once she located the Device.
"All right. Show me the final steps to disable this thing. I'll get it done." The taller agent, Ward, said.
"No. Stick to the extraction plan. I'll be done in a minute." The shorter agent, Fitz, said, working to disable the device.
"The extraction plan's a bust." She heard Ward say. "The exfil team never made contact."
"Well, that's just insulting. Agents Ward and Fitz?" Ellie quipped, causing Ward to turn around with his gun aimed at her chest. "Easy tiger. I'm the extraction team."
"That's Electra." Fitz said when he turned to look at her. "Who would've thought that they would bring in one of the Avengers?"
"I guess you guys are near and dear to Fury's heart." Ellie said, rolling her eyes at the use of her 'hero name'. "Get this done and let's get you guys home."
"Good plan. I'm bloody starving." Fitz turned his attention back to the Device. Finishing disabling it a few minutes later. Ward activated the remote beacon to let SHIELD know that they were successful.
"Let's get out of here." Ellie said as Fitz pulled out the main part of the Device. Alarms started to sound as he did so and Ellie was a little excited to see combat again.
"We need a new plan." Ward and Fitz said together.
"Nope." Ellie popped the 'p' sound. She could feel the energy buzzing over her skin as hostiles flooded into the warehouse where the Device was kept. "You guys get out of here. I'll cover you."
"We aren't going to leave you here." Fitz protested.
"It's my job to get you out." Ellie retorted. "Let me do my job. Go!"
Ellie took out several of the hostiles with a controlled stun blast, leaving only four hostiles left. They began shooting at her and, thanks to the newly modified uniform, several bullets found their marks in her abdomen before she could get a forcefield up. She cried out but managed to disarm one more hostile before two of the other hostiles dropped their weapons. She glanced behind her to see that Fitz had rigged the Device to work against the hostiles and Ward took care of the last hostile.
"Let's get out of here." Ellie shouted over the noise of SHIELD starting their attack on the facility. She wrapped her arm around her abdomen as she covered the two agents as they ran outside.
"You'll lose too much blood like this." Fitz said as they ran. "We need to bind your wound."
"I'll be fine." Ellie said but she was getting paler. She heard the jets of an airplane when they got clear of the building and her vision got fuzzy. Her knees threatened to buckle but she locked them as she ran, ignoring the blood pouring from her wounds. The trio made it onto the ramp of the airplane and she felt the ramp rise when her legs gave out and her vision went black. Ellie collapsed onto the floor of the airplane, unconscious from blood loss.
"Oh no." Phil said, running and dropping to his knees next to her. "Ellie."
A/N: Four reviews on one chapter? You guys rock and since you were so responsive to the last chapter, I shall give you this one early. Please leave a review and thanks to all who read/follow/favorite/review. Those emails make my day. I love all of you.
Tombs: A thousand smiles back at you, doll. ;)
Guest 1: I'm glad you like the Phil and Ellie pairing. Coulson is just so adorkable it's hard to believe there's not more Phil-centric stories out there. :)
Niiroya: Well, he is a sentimentalist. :)
Guest 2: Your wish is my command. :)
If there are any particular requests as to the Phil/Ellie reunion, please feel free to PM me or leave a review. If all goes to plan, there will be a new chapter up in the next couple of days. Happy Easter everybody!