20 year old Dakota has made up her mind: she's joining the Avengers. She has always known she was different, because of her father (L.). SHIELD has big plans with her and she accepts their intention to make her a soldier, not realizing how quickly things can escalate.


11. Settled in

I immediately knew they had planned a surprise party for me. The moment I entered the main room everybody was doing random stuff. Vision was putting the dishes in the high-tech machine. Natasha was hanging around with a book and Clint was having a conversation with her from behind his laptop. Stark held the door open for me and made an extravagance gesture for me to enter.
“Welcome in your new home, Dakota.”
Everybody looked up and was genuinely happy to see me. They had all gathered here for a reason, the team was complete.
Bucky and Steve were upstairs somewhere.
I hugged everyone and exchanged some words about my bootcamp. Soon everybody was listening to my midnight adventure with Brick.
I had learned a lot, but was still lacking experience. But they didn’t mind and couldn’t wait for my experience to come.
“Your first mission will be the coming next week. But the preparations are still going on and we’ll have a big meeting right before we head off,” Natasha informed me.
Inside I was jumping and dancing from excitement. I said: “Cool.”
“Your room is on the second floor,” Clint pronounced, “next to Wanda’s. You two share the whole flour + the gym and the biggest bathroom.”
“Awesome. I’m going to unpack my stuff right away.”
“You know the way,” Wanda said with a mysterious smile. We knew. Inside joke.

I found Bucky and Steve whispering an intensive talk in my room, which was weird. When I opened the door and saw them in the middle of the space I hesitated for a moment. Steve draw back his comforting hand from Bucky’s shoulder and smiled at me.
“Dakota! You’re back!”
“Hi guys. Missed me?
Bucky felt relieved for some reason.
“And uh, this is my room?”
The next instant they felt caught.
“Uh, yeah, sorry. This was the only room where Friday isn’t listening yet. We had to discuss something.”
“May I guess what that is?”
I dropped my suitcase on the bed and stood in between them. They were a lot bigger than me. I felt small again.
“No,” Bucky simply said.
I laughed. I already knew, it was nothing serious.
“It’s alright. Now, get out of my room. Downstairs there’s a little celebration going on. I will be coming soon, I’m first going to unpack my things and take a shower with warm water.”
Bucky looked astounded.
“That was supposed to be a surprise!?”
“Nothing’s a surprise to me. But I’ll try to look surprised and shy and stuff.”
I walked to the window and enjoyed the view of the trees hanging over my balcony. A squirrel rushed away when he saw me. In the meantime Steve left the room but Bucky stayed. I turned around.
I already knew.
“About, uh, us. Maybe it is better to… I don’t know.”
“Wait and see. Yeah, I know. My position in the team is not fixed and neither is yours. We’re both underdogs in our own way. Steve always has to reassure you no one hates you anymore, but that’s not true.”
I creeped closer carefully.
“Stark hates you and he will decide who’s staying and who’s not. If I start liking you too much, he’ll get suspicious.”
Bucky was dumbfounded. I blushed.
“Not.. that I mean that I like you… I mean, it’s just that I want to help you to get a nights rest and I was drunk and I’m sorry, omg… just go.”
I pointed at the door and hid my embarrassed face. He nodded, but made no attempt to stay close to me for another second. He was about to leave when he turned around: “I’ll find a way to get my night’s rest.”
I didn’t know what he meant by that, but I was soon going to find out.

All was unpacked and I had enjoyed a long shower. I checked out the gym and found out it was so much more than just a gym. The walls were made of mirrors that could turn opaque and had a protection against high frequency shocks (which meant Wanda’s energy and earthquakes).
There were punching bags, treadmills and other various fitness equipment. Of course, the ping pong table wasn’t missing. Ropes were hanging from the ceiling and there was a fighting mat at the back.
A floor up I found a library and a relaxation corner with big cushions and a television. Here most rooms were situated, but they had to share the same bathroom. That wasn’t such a big problem since the bathroom cleaned itself. The elevator was made from glass, and that creeped me out, so I found another staircase to the roof. The roof was a garden with solar panels. The greens were more sort of a camouflage than an ecological thing, but I liked it anyway. From here I could see the whole compound: the living quarters on which I was standing were hidden from the other buildings by trees. There was a Heli-landing place in the middle of the square. Another building, called the business quarters, was closest to the gate: the only entrance to the compound for big vehicles. Another building was mostly hidden underground. It was a huge cellar-kind-off airplane hall. The Heli-landing place would slide open and the airplane/ aircraft would fly off. Behind me was a vast forest and a small door in the fence, that leaded to the jogging path.
There also was a small farm. As less as possible products were delivered from ‘the outside world’, so the compound was self-sufficient for most of its food. The sun shone and I heard the sound of nature buzzing in the background.
I could sense no other presence on the roof, here Friday wasn’t listening either. I was planning to watch the stars at night and have the medidation exercises with Wanda here. This place was awesome.
I liked it.

In the main room everybody was waiting for me, each with a glass of the most delicious Champaign. The sphere was relaxed and everybody was happy, yes, even Bucky and Tony got along for today. We celebrated with a big dinner and music.
Clint was aghast that Vision had never seen Men in Black, neither did Steve and Bucky, and I hadn’t seen the whole movie yet. So the whole pack moved upstairs, settled in the big cushions and watched all the movies in a marathon.
Tony called for Friday to make popcorn and bring soda.
Wanda was most sceptic about the aliens, and Vision just didn’t like it, but Bucky was mesmerised by the story. Sam kept spoiling all the endings, so Wanda and I shushed him every time he wanted to say something.
The day ended with a demonstration of fighting techniques I had learned. I got smashed anyway by the others, even Wanda. I sighed.
“Okay, physically I’m not that good, but I can create illusions and make my opponents run off in fright.”
“You have a point there,” Wanda said, “always avoid a fight when you can.”
Tony augmented: ‘But what if…? What if there was a device that blocked your tricks, Wanda’s mind reading, what would you do then?”
“I will blast them away!”
And I enthusiastically demonstrated a ball on the mirror. The mirror absorbed the energy. It had a great effect.
Everyone was astonished, except from Vision and Wanda.
Bucky was still not impressed: “But you will need to work on your techniques, still. I’ll help.”
“I will too,” Natasha joined and poked Clint, “You can help with her aim.”
Clint smiled: “Deal.”
“About that…” Tony started, but Wanda and I were quicker than him.
“Tony, I’m not a lab rat!”
“But consider it as: yes, you can watch us train,” I finished the statement.
Tony raised his hands in defense: “Okay, okay. Message received. No experiments, only observations.”
I high fived Wanda.

The same night I showed Wanda the roof. She was amazed.
“We need to fetch two comfy chairs and watch the stars!”
“I was thinking the same!”
“And that will be our first exercise!”
“You understood perfectly well: bring me a chair without using your legs.”
It took me a half an hour, but I managed to bring a chair with telekinesis to the rooftop. Wanda did the other one in three minutes.
Suddenly Vision appeared next to us. He flew through the ceiling.
“Still not using doors and stairs, are you?” Wanda asked, “That was a rhetoric question, don’t answer it.”
The three of us sat down for another hour watching the stars. Wanda was cold, so Vision invited her to sit on his lap. She hesitated first, but finally sat with him. He carefully hugged her (I hid my smile) and he started explaining all the star formations, even the ones Wanda and I couldn’t see.
What we did see was an amazing star view in his entirety. The team was complete for the next coming weeks. Tomorrow the real work would begin.

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