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CHAPTER ELEVEN

Clash

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THE RAFT, RYKER'S ISLAND

The metal tapping echoed throughout the small area. Ana was pacing back and forth, her arms bound together by heavy and secure cuffs. They stopped at her elbows and inside her hands were stacked on top of each other as she held it to her chest. They had forced her in a clean blue shirt and trousers and took away her suit and weapons to god knows where.

She knew exactly where she was. The Raft. A prison built to hold super-villains and criminals no normal prison can contain. And currently, she stood in an interview room with a hot coffee and donuts set up on a table in the middle of the room.

What a cruel thing to do, place sweet beverages in front of a person who couldn't use her hands.

The door cracked open and the Secretary of State entered with a huge smile. Ana huffed and sat herself down on the silver chair, eyes locked on him.

"About time."

"I want to thank you for coming quietly despite the ruckus you and your friends made at the airport, Miss Michaels." Ross said, sitting down across from her. "I was very disappointed to hear about the dissolution of your team over the Sokovian Accords. Before the Avengers, you were an excellent agent, with the -"

Ana cut him off by throwing her shackled hands on the table with a loud boom.

"Look, Rossy, if you're here to give me medals of valour, I set up a PO box for these damn things with SHIELD. Which I have no doubt you have access to." She said.

Ross pursed his lips, a vein in his neck bulging. He didn't like being cut off. And And loved cutting people off. But he had to be patient, especially with this one. "You hungry? Thirsty?" He offered a hand that gestured to the beverages.

Ana exhaled and in a few seconds, her cuffs were broken with one simple pull. Ross looked at her silently surprised, deciding whether to run and call for help or be still and listen to what she had to say. She looked at him for a while, before reaching out and picking up a jelly donut.

"No need to butter me up — though it is heavily appreciated. You asked for a sit down, and I obliged because I think you know why I'm here." She took a bite out of the donut and closed her eyes, savouring the sweet taste.

"Agent Romanoff says you want to retire." Ross revealed, opening a file he had brought with him.

Ana squinted her eyes at him and the files with spaces needed for signing. "Why do I feel like you won't give me the satisfaction of leaving a free woman?" She wiped her hands and crossed them over her chest.

"Because you're a valuable asset." Ross replied, "We don't want to let go of your services just yet."

Ana flashed him a false grin, "That's very flattering. But serving the bidding of a bunch of politicians and bureaucrats on a daily basis don't exactly hold much appeal."

"You did it before wi-"

"With SHIELD, yeah I know." Ana cut him off again, "But that was years ago, before I really knew anything about Hydra or the real threats to the world. I was just happy I could do something good with my abilities."

"So, you don't consider yourself a threat to the world?"

Ana snapped her eyes to his and her gaze faltered. "What's that supposed to mean? Are you interrogating me, Ross? Is this what this is?" She pointed at the table and the small room the were in.

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