Phil and Ellie discussed keeping their relationship secret once again for the safety of each other. After her speech at his memorial, Fury had most of the attending agents retconned, effectively erasing the knowledge of the relationship. It would be on a need to know basis.
"Don't you think your team should know?" Ellie asked Phil before the others reached the holocom.
"Not unless it's an absolute emergency." Phil said. "If they get caught and tortured, we don't need that getting out."
"You're right." Ellie conceded. She remembered the packet that was in her pocket. She had transferred it when she changed clothes. Handing the small envelope to Phil she said, "I just remembered these belong to you."
Phil opened the envelope and saw his Captain America trading cards, each one signed by Captain America himself. He heard the others coming and kept himself from kissing her. "Thank you."
"No problem." Ellie smiled at him.
Ellie was introduced to the team properly now. There was Melinda May, Skye, Grant Ward, Leopold Fitz, and Jemma Simmons. They all seemed a bit wary but overall welcoming to her.
"What's the mission, A.C.?" Skye asked.
Ellie choked on a giggle and sobered up at Phil's look. He tapped a few buttons and brought up the information. Right now, their mission was to find and talk to a woman named Hannah Hutchens with possible telekinetic powers. Allegedly she made a gas station explode. Ellie found it hard to believe because after ten years with SHIELD and being a super herself, she had never met a telekinetic. Phil wanted to take Skye along so she could see how this part of the job is done. Ellie was definitely going as was Agent May.
"I have a bad feeling about this." Ellie muttered when she and Phil saw the crowd gathered around Hannah's house. "If she is telekinetic, this mob is going to upset her. I think I should be the one to talk to her."
"Without backup?" May asked.
"I can handle anything she could throw at me." Ellie was sure of this. "I know when I first got my powers, a group of SHIELD agents didn't really help."
Phil sighed but relented. "If the situation turns, we're going in."
"Understood." Ellie smiled reassuringly at him and got out of the vehicle. She approached Hannah carefully. There was an officer standing with her. "Officer, is there anything you can do to make this crowd go away?"
"Been trying to but it's a free country." The officer shrugged and Ellie had the distinct sense that he didn't really want to help anyway.
"Miss Hutchens, my name is Ellie Johnson. I'm here because of the strange things you've been witnessing."
"You've come to lock me up?" Hannah asked.
"I'm here to talk." Ellie turned her back to the crowd and made a small bubble field in her hands. "I want to help."
"What good with that do?" Hannah was clearly upset and had been crying. She jumped out of the way when an egg hit her front door and the crowd started to shout "Murderer! Get out of here!"
Hannah had tears falling again and Ellie heard tires squealing. She saw a police car driving itself toward the crowd, effectively causing the crowd to disperse temporarily.
"It's her! That freak tried to kill us!" A woman shouted. Skye, May, and Phil exited the car and handled the crowd.
"Hannah, I know that this isn't in your control." Ellie said, gesturing for the others to stay away. "But I want to get you somewhere safe from all these people. Will you please come with me?"
Hannah nodded and Ellie escorted her back to the SUV. Ellie explained that for safety reasons they were going to have to put her in the interrogation room. Hannah nodded once more but stayed mostly silent when Ellie took her to the room.
"Would you like anything?" Ellie asked. "Some water or something to eat?"
"This isn't me." Hannah said. "I swear."
"Why don't you tell me what happened?" Ellie sat in the chair across from Hannah. "Take your time."
"I'm the safety supervisor at the particle accelerator plant." Hannah said, her voice raw from crying. "We were having issues with one of the couplings. It seems like I was going down there every few days. Tobias is—was the technician down there."
Phil entered the interrogation room with a bottle of water and he had taken off his tie. He gave the water to Hannah with a smile. Hannah looked at Ellie, as if to make sure Phil wouldn't hurt her.
"This is Agent Coulson." Ellie introduced them. "He's not going to hurt you. We want to help you. Please go on."
"Where ever I go, things turn bad." Hannah said softly.
"Were you angry at the people at the house?" Ellie asked.
"No." Hannah said. "I know most of them. They were angry. I understand. Oh, God. Frank's wife. The way she was looking at me..."
"Frank Delacourt." Phil supplied. "He died in the accident."
"They're gone because of me. I killed them."
"You said you checked the couplings every few days." Ellie placed her hand over Hannah's comfortingly. "There wasn't anymore that you could do."
"We think that you may have gained telekinetic powers." Phil said.
"What? You think I did this?" Hannah asked.
"My team is working to find out what happened to the damage and what might have happened to you." Phil said.
"The police car? The gas station? You think I did that?" Hannah looked to Ellie.
"We aren't sure." Ellie said. "If you do have powers, it's possible you aren't in control of them. I wasn't at first. I killed two men when I first got them. We're just trying to find a way to help you."
"This may be hard to hear." Phil said. "But these events all have one thing in common."
"Me." Hannah confirmed. "But I'm not causing it."
"Can you tell me what is?" Ellie asked.
"You won't believe me." Hannah sighed.
"Try me." Phil and Ellie said in unison.
"God stopped protecting me. He abandoned me." Hannah said, fresh tears falling down her face."
"What did he stop protecting you from?" Ellie asked.
"Demons." Hannah said.
Phil and Ellie exchanged a look before Phil spoke. "We have to go check in with our team. Do you need anything, Miss Hutchins?"
"No. Thank you." Hannah said.
"Call for me if you need anything." Ellie smiled at her before she closed the door behind her. Hannah's words rang in her ears while the rest of the team wrote it off as guilt. "I think she may be right."
"What?" Was the collective response.
"If she was upset at all these locations, then she wouldn't even be aware that she's causing the accidents." Ellie said. "And if she has telekinesis, which I don't believe that she does, things moving by themselves could make it seem like demons are haunting her.
"Why do you think she doesn't have powers?" Skye asked. "You saw what she did to the police car."
"True but everything we do causes us to burn energy, right?" Ellie looked to FitzSimmons for confirmation. When they nodded, she continued. "I can feel and manipulate energy fields around me, even the electrical impulses in your body. Telekinesis would take an enormous amount of energy but I didn't catch any fluctuations at her house or in the interrogation room. Everything about her is completely normal."
"Normal may be a relative term." Simmons said.
"Either way, I think it's something else." Ellie said. She glanced at Phil and saw him almost beaming with pride.
"Pour over the accident site." Phil told FitzSimmons. "If it wasn't her fault, great. But until we know one way or the other, she's a danger to all of us."
The group went their own separate ways after the briefing and Ellie joined Phil in his office, sitting in the recliner in the corner. Skye joined them shortly after they settled in, wanting to talk to Hannah.
"She's nice—like overly nice." Skye skimmed the information on her tablet. "She never misses a birthday post to her friends, runs the youth program at her church and rescues dogs. Someone with that much empathy, the cause of that much loss of life-she's devastated. She's spouting nonsense about God punishing her-"
"I agree with you Skye." Ellie interrupted. "But she's going to believe what she wants to until we prove something one way or the other. Even if we do prove that it isn't her fault, part of her is going to blame herself until the day she dies."
"You're asking the right questions." Phil told Skye. "But for now, you have to stay away from her."
Skye practically stomped out of Phil's office and Ellie closed the door when Skye was gone. "Well, that went well, I think."
"Do you think Hannah's a danger?" Phil asked.
Ellie shrugged and perched herself on the edge of his desk next to where he sat. "Nothing we can't handle."
"Hey." Phil smiled at her. "Come here."
Ellie leaned forward with a smile and pressed her lips to his chastely. "You know I love you, right?"
"I love you too." Phil said. "What do you say that after this mission, we all have a little break? Maybe head over to Paris for a night or two."
"Would Fury allow that?" Ellie asked.
"It's my plane." Phil shrugged. "Besides, we haven't had any time to ourselves in the last nine months. Well, except for your birthday."
"You were at my birthday party?" Ellie asked. "Why didn't you say hello?"
"I couldn't but 'Brian' could." Phil chuckled as the realization hit Ellie.
"You're a sweetheart." Ellie kissed his cheek. They headed to the lab when they heard Simmons scream.
"Hannah's right, sir. It isn't her." Simmons said as Phil helped her up. "Someone else is on this plane."
"Phil, how could somebody get on this plane?" Ellie said, closing her eyes to focus on the energy around her. The power went out and she made a small, contained ball of energy in her hand, acting as a flashlight.
"What was that?" Simmons asked.
"Plane's lost power." Phil answered. "We're going down."
The three of them went to buckle up before they crashed when Ellie spoke. "Where's the other one? Fitz?"
"He went to get our couplings for simulations." Simmons said, starting to unbuckle.
"I'll go get him." Ellie volunteered. "Just tell me where to go."
"You can't do that." Phil said quickly.
"Fitz is out there with a possible psychopath and the plane is going down." Ellie said. "I have to go."
She took off down the corridors of the plane, trying to locate the Scot and keeping an eye out for the stranger on the plane. Ellie could hear a pounding the closer she got to the storage closet. "Fitz, it's me. Can you hear me?"
"Yeah. Can you tell me what the bloody hell is going on here?" Fitz asked.
"Well, Hannah's not telekinetic, there's a ghost man on the plane, and we just went down." Ellie started yanking on the door handle, successfully pulling it open on the fourth try. She pulled Fitz out of the closet. "We need to get the power up and running."
She heard somebody heading their way and pushing Fitz against the wall, a finger pressed to her lips so he could take the hint to be quiet. She walked carefully to the corner, hands ready with energy blasts and jumped in front of the attacker-who happened to be Ward and Simmons.
"We found Fitz." Ward said into a walkie talkie.
"Good. It looks like the main problem is in avionics two but he took out all our systems." May's voice came back. "Get your equipment and get down there."
Ward and Ellie covered the scientists while they got to where they needed to be and while they worked. Ward had a gun and Ellie placed a force field around them all.
"Does that work against ghosts?" Ward asked her, referring to the field.
"I guess we'll find out, won't we?" Ellie replied.
"There was another world in the explosion." Simmons was telling Fitz. "It was amazing."
"There were reports in London that Thor was passing through portals. Through other worlds." Fitz said.
"You think that's what they were researching there?" Ward asked.
"Yeah." Simmons said. "This ghost is a man trapped between our world and another."
"Why would he go after Hannah though?" Ellie asked the pair. "It has to be one of the victims, right?"
"It would be the most likely result, yes." Fitz said.
Ellie thought about their theory and about her interview with Hannah, an idea popping into her head. "He's not here to hurt her."
"What?" Ward asked.
"Hannah said that Tobias would call her down every few days to fix the coupling. You and Skye thought he had it out for her but what if he likes her?" Ellie said. "In each one of those scenarios, she was in a position where she could have gotten hurt. What if he's protecting her?"
They heard a clang down the hall and Ward went to investigate while Ellie stayed behind to guard the scientists.
"Clear." Ward said.
Ellie kept it to herself when Tobias materialized outside of the force field and she could feel the massive surge of energy before he arrived. He had a pipe wrench in his hand and started pounding on the field. "Ward! Could use a little help here!"
Simmons shrieked, having turned around to see the attack when Ellie spoke. Ward ran at Tobias but he disappeared before Ward could grab him.
"Cover these two." Ellie told Ward. "I need to get to May."
"Why her?" Ward asked quickly.
"Because I need her help." Ellie took off running to the interrogation room, running into May and explaining to her on the way. "If we get her out of here and let them talk, maybe he'll go away."
May grabbed Hannah and practically dragged her off the plane, Ellie bringing up the rear and promising that it would be okay. They didn't have long to wait for Tobias. He was waiting for them a half a mile from the plane.
"Let her go." Tobias demanded.
"We are trying to keep her safe." Ellie said. She put a force field around him, effectively holding him to this world temporarily. "We thought she was in danger so we took her to keep her safe."
"Tobias?" Hannah asked, looking around Ellie. "Is that you?"
"Tell him we won't hurt you." Ellie said. The portal that he had come through was tugging at the force field.
"They're friends, Tobias." Hannah said quickly, making him stop fighting the field. She listened to him admit to what he had done, loosening the bolts so she would visit and spend time with him. "How could you?"
"I'm sorry. I killed them." Tobias said, starting to sob. "Even worse, people started blaming you. I tried to stop them."
"You hurt more people." Hannah said, tears falling down her face.
"I was trying to protect you. I was trying to atone for my sin." Tobias said. "Hannah, please, if you forgive me, maybe I won't go to Hell."
"Only God can forgive you." Hannah said.
"Protecting Hannah won't make it better." Ellie said. She could feel the field crumbling. "You have to let her go, let her live her life. Stop haunting her and then you can move on."
Tobias reached for Hannah and Ellie lowered the field so they could touch.
"Let the girl go." Ellie said, noticing the minute flinch from Agent May. Tobias took a deep breath then dissipated completely. Hannah was free and they took her home, clearing her name of the accident.
A/N: Thanks to all! You guys rock! I didn't really get a clear answer on whether you all would like some Phellie smut so if you would, please leave a review. If I get two positives, the next chapter shall be just that. Please leave a review on your way out! xo
Tombs: I've never collaborated on a story but I think it could be good. Sending love back your way, peach. :)
Rylee: I hope I didn't make you wait too long, lovely. :)
Music Box: Thank you dahling! I aim to please. :)