Underground, after a couple of days, Danielle forgot the way that night and day felt. She knew there was a point at which she slept, but when that was, it never seemed to coincide with the actual sun and moon. She also felt as though the whole process was like creating some sort of intricate puzzle. They found the pieces that worked, that settled together and made the picture bigger. There was a lot of guesswork. They began to choreograph.
Steve was strong, she realized, in more than just the physical way. His strength came in many different colors, he was patient, he was intuitive, he was calculating. He assessed a situation and came up with 30 solutions instantly. He could calculate the exact moment he needed to strike. Though she tried to remain focused on the task at hand, she couldn't but help get distracted at the way he commanded a room.
The plan, as it began, they realized would be quite risky. For it to be as realistic as possible, they would need to get hurt. It wouldn't be too terrible since they had Danielle, but nobody likes their bones being snapped or their skin being split.
Ana continually worked as the interpreter, and the language barrier was becoming a larger problem as they worked. In run-throughs, somebody would get injured who wasn't supposed to - thrown across the room, electrocuted, burned, or sliced with the lethal vines the Amazons could produce from their arms.
Something about working with a group of 19 volatile, powerful super-humans led to a bit of tension.
It was their fourth run through. Natasha's face was bleeding, due to one of the Amazons cutting her cheek open.
"Swear to God, you do that one more time, I'll put an arrow through your hand." Clint growled at Dante, who'd accidentally cut her twice before.
"Don't translate that." Danielle said to Ana, healing Natasha's cheek. Hakim fell to the floor, sprawling out and staring at the ceiling.
"We are officially never going to make this work." he shouted. "We all suck."
"We're doing fine." Steve said. "Again. Positions."
They all reset.
The Amazons lined up at the end of the building. Their eyes glowed fiercely, and from their hands long tendrils of vines slithered like snakes.
Hakim ran towards them, heavy waves on both sides of him. Since both him and all of them could manipulate water, the waves splashed around them, a forcefield protecting them. He jumped out of the way as Radi lashed out at him with a vine, hissing. He formed a chunk of ice, heaving it towards Carmen.
The three radioactive brothers fell from the ceiling. They shot blasts at the four, but with a great gust of wind, the Amazons flew out of the way, landing on the other side of the building. Danielle watched anxiously as Clint and Natasha ran towards them. The plan was Aya would lash out towards Natasha, and Natasha would duck, but like the past three times, Dante clipped Natasha's cheek.
"Shit!" Natasha screamed. Dante grinned. Clint reached for an arrow, but Natasha grabbed his arm.
"This is a mess." Steve said, as everyone gathered in the center. "This is too planned out. We'd realistically all hit at once, and obviously could overpower four people. It's going to seem forced, there's too many factors."
"But the whole reason they're playing the 'bad guys' is because they can just return to Colombia. SHIELD 'arrests' them for the camera, and they never have to come back to America again."
"Good." Dante spat, glaring.
"Oh now he can understand?" Richard said dryly, and Jesse laughed.
"Look, nobody else is going to volunteer to play bad guy." Hakim said. "The repercussions means we would be able to live normal lives here again. But we need someone to fight."
"The last time we had aliens." A voice said from the elevator entrance. The group looked up.
Tony walked into the training center. And behind him, the God of Thunder himself.
"I am here to help you all." Thor said in his booming voice. He clapped Steve on the shoulder, grinning. "My powerful human brothers and sisters."
"How did you contact him?" Steve asked.
"Twitter." Tony replied, and Steve looked confused. "No, a friend of a friend knows Jane Foster, and they have some sort of teloportation nonsense set up. Highly frowned upon by border control. Don't tell anyone."
"Now, who are all of you?" Thor looked down at the group, smiling cheerfully. "Earth's most fearsome warriors?"
"Eh." Hakim shrugged. Danielle smiled, hiding her grin behind her hand.
"We're having trouble making this look realistic." Steve said. "I assume Tony has explained the plan to you."
"He has." he said. "Which is why I've brought some formidable opponents for you."
"Uhhhh," Sam said. "You brought aliens?" He looked at Steve with wide eyes.
"Aye." Thor said. "Some various beasts we have in plenty. Asgardian wolves, Rock Trolls, Mammoth Serpents."
"Just...brought some alien creatures down from Asgard for us to battle?" Ana said, frowning. "Wow. Well. That's cool." she arched a brow, smiling.
"They are secured in my tri-dimensional ship just outside of Earth's atmosphere. They will be quite angry when they are released. Nothing you group can't handle, I'm sure." He smiled again, looking down at them again as they all stared up in silence. The Hawaiians read his thoughts in unison. Hakim scratched his head.
"Why don't we do some sparring?" Steve finally broke the silence. "Pair up. Try not to hurt eachother too bad."
The group split up. Danielle leaned against him, smiling up at him.
"I like this plan a lot better." she said. He frowned.
"It's less predictable. Less factors we can control."
"Worried you can't take on some alien dog, Capsicle?"
"No, I'm worried people will get hurt."
"Well, that's why we have nurse hotstuff to carry around with us." he said, and Danielle wrinkled her nose at him.
"I don't think yo-" Steve began, but Thor cut him off.
"You've found a mate!" Thor boomed, laughing. "Excellent! I am Thor." he stuck his massive hand out towards Danielle, who shook it, looking pleased.
"You know, we did save New York on our own, Cap." Tony said quietly, looking at the groups of other superhumans. "Why so many extras?"
"Because they need help too." Danielle said.
"She's right." Steve said. "We made this plan to protect ourselves, to prove to everyone that we're capable of keeping them safe. And just because they weren't with us in New York, doesn't mean they can't help now."
"Fiiiine." Tony rolled his eyes, walking past the pair. "Didn't need to get all Ghandi on me, sheesh."