Chapter 9

"Do you have Tony's number?" she asked as soon as they finished eating. He looked at her funny.

"If you can figured out how to use that cell phone, probably."

"Where is it? Also how do you keep in contact with SHIELD if you can't use a phone?"

"They call me. Or I yell at it. Stark was tired of me breaking all my phones, so he made one that does what I says." he said, looking smug. "In the living room, probably."

She stood, picking it up and looking for Tony's contact. There weren't many numbers in the phone.

She started calling, and the camera opened up on her face. Irritated, she made an attempt to shut it off, but there didn't seem to be an option. She sighed loudly, waiting for him to answer.

"See? Told you it's not easy." she heard Steve say in the kitchen.

"Ah, the mysterious new nurse woman. I figured Miss USA hadn't figured out how to do it on his own." Tony said as he picked up.

"I was wondering if you can accsess city records. Arrests, coroners office."

His eyebrows raised, and he turned to tap something into his computer.

"Yeah, already done. Their firewall is laughable, very late 2007." he said. "Anything in particular?"

She ducked into the other room. "Looking for a found body two nights ago. A male. Central park."

He typed something else, and she saw a face appear on his monitor. "Got it. 30 year old male, broken neck. Anything else?"

"Just everything on the victim. Can you email it to me?" she recited her address, and he nodded. "Thanks, Mr. Stark."

"Tony's fine, kid. Hope you find what you're looking for."

She heard her laptop beep in the other room. Steve appeared.

"He wasn't the victim." he said slowly.

"I know." she said. "I'm just curious. It's because of him I'm here."

She walked into his bedroom, looking at the email from a one iamironman . He wasn't what she was expecting. He was short, with prominent balding. He had a heavy cross necklace on his chest, and wore a greasy looking black tank top. He was thin too. He had a long list of arrests, and had only recently gotten out of Rikers.

"Well. I don't know what I was expecting to get out of this." she said to Steve. He looked at the picture without a glimmer of emotion.

"Now you know, I guess."

She sighed, shutting the laptop and then falling back into his pillows.

"Can we go to the hospital?" she asked quietly. "I want to get some practice in on people that aren't you."

"Danielle." he sighed, sitting down on the edge of the bed. "If you do that, every person in America will be knocking at your door. You can't save everyone."

"You saved me."

"Luck. Coincidence. Fate. What have you. People die everyday, and I'm not there to carry them to safety."

"Doesn't that suck, though?" she asked.


"Like...that..." she sighed. "It doesn't feel nice."

He nodded.

"I wish half the world had powers like us. But at the same time, power in the wrong hands leads to typically...destruction and chaos."

He looked terribly sad as he spoke, and she felt a surge of compassion towards him.

That afternoon, the pair returned to SHIELD. Since he was on guard duty, she had to accompany him. There was to be a threat-level briefing in one of the communication bases. She followed him to the room, and one of the SHIELD agents standing outside the door, cleared his throat as she tried to go in.

"I don't think you have clearance, miss." he said. Steve stepped back outside, looking down at the agent.

"You want to try that again?" he said, leveling him with his gaze.

The agent stepped back, and waved Danielle inside. She mouthed the word 'sorry' with a shrug as she passed the agent.

Fury stood at the front of the room, looking menacing. Danielle, as usual, tried to stay unnoticeable, and found herself hiding behind Steve.

"Alright. Here's the issue. We're in the dark. Intelligence satellites find no activity where the ships went. It's probably an underground institution. This name we received, the company, it all leads to dead ends. Our pilots are for-hire criminals, they supposedly have no idea who was in the chain of command. There's no corporation on our radar with this sort of man power, technology, or funding. It's a new threat."

"We don't know if anyone has administered a serum?" Bruce asked. Fury shook his head. "I guess we'll find out eventually." he sighed.

"We could have another hulk to deal with." Natasha said. Bruce gave her a look. She held up her hands in defense. "One that isn't on our side, sorry."

"Not to mention having one could trigger the other." Steve said.

"I'm right here, guys." he said. "But you're right. Triggering isn't the response we want. If threatened, we'll need a controlled phase. Or else...I won't be able to determine who is who."

"Our options boil down to this - do we keep you here incase we get some sort of warning, or do we move you to a secure location?" Natasha said.

"None of the serums are strong enough to produce something with the physical power of The Other Guy. Theoretically, that's how I designed them. However, with the unexpected results of her dose, you still might be out of your league. I don't know what abilities it could produce."

"Could we factor you out, regarding safety?" Nick said.

"If you guys think you could handle it, I'd prefer to not be involved." Bruce said. "It's up to you. I don't want to endanger anyone unintentionally."

"That's fair." Natasha said. "I think we can manage."

"We'll send you to the island." Nick said. "I'll have a plane ready in less than an hour."

"Call me if you have science questions. Have Kiara-" Bruce said, pointing at Steve. "Send me updates on her status."

That evening, after hours of listening to processing theories and tactical movements, finally Danielle got away to the lab.

"Okay. Prick me with needles. Run tests. Do something. I can't take the meetings anymore." she said to Kiara as she walked in.

"Excellent!" Kiara chirped, pushing her into a chair and attaching some probes to her neck instantly. "How are you feeling today?" she asked as she scribbled down some numbers from the readout.


"Are you eating normally? Sleeping? Are you experiencing normal bodily functions?"

"Yes, yes - although less than I used to, and yes, I guess so." she said. "I pee."

Kiara nodded.

"No red flags?" she asked, shining a light into her eyes. Danielle shook her head. "And you still find yourself with a libido? I'm curious if it effected your reproductive organs."

"A libido?" Danielle laughed. "That's..."

"Well, nobody can deny how handsome he is, and you did spend the night at his apartment." Kiara said. "Just want to make sure everything is working properly."

Danielle sighed, and then shrugged. "I don't know. Haven't attempted to have sex yet, I guess. I will let you know."

"Make sure no details are left out." Kiara said with a wink.

And then, all at once, every window in the lab shattered.

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