thirty.

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If there was one thing the Avengers had thought, in all the time they had spent together, was that, one way or another, they were always getting through every situation alive and united. No matter the difficulties, the internal doubts each of one had, they always overstepped everything for the greater good.

But this time, something was off about them, about the situation and about their enemies. The Avengers were scattered around the Tower and, as much as they tried to find each other to fight together, they were constantly separated. Clint and Natasha were relegated to the training room, almost dead as they did their best to stand up and throw punches without even seeing where they were aiming at. Bruce was having a full size identity crisis as he switched from Bruce, to Hulk, back to Bruce. Steve and Tony had been divided again, each of them walking without a direction as their only objective was to kill as many soldiers as possible.

In the mean time, Hazel, Pietro and Wanda had recovered from the explosion and were climbing the stairs of the Tower, searching for their friends. Hazel was panicking to the point where she couldn't even recognize the wounded heartbeats of her friends from the ones of the soldiers, so she just ignored the feeling and kept following the twins, hoping for a miracle.

The floor they reached was completely filled with unconscious bodies, all wearing the same suit. But the fact that so many of them had been defeated, but the fight still wasn't over didn't make them feel any better.

"Do we have any chances at all?" Hazel almost whined, pulling at her hair as she walked around the place, searching for someone she recognized.

"You already know the answer."

The three Avengers stopped dead in their tracks as an all too familiar voice reached their ears, making them snap towards the source.

"You," Pietro hissed through gritted teeth, his hands painfully clenching as he made sure his sister and Hazel were as close to him as possible.

"The one and only," Marnikov grinned, stepping to the side to allow Lucy to walk next to him as a group of soldiers had their backs.

"No way," Hazel breathed out, a huge pain hitting her as the only person she thought she would never see again was once again standing in front of her, once again being the cause of her defeats.

"Hey, sis. Thought you'd never see me again?" Her voice sounded just like the hiss of a snake.

"We sure hoped so," Wanda exclaimed, placing a hand in front of Hazel to stop from her from walking any further.

"Listen, listen, listen," Marnikov said, moving his hands in front of him. "you've already hurt many of my soldiers, just like we did with yours. You can feel it, right, Green Leaf?"

Hazel breathed ruggedly as the heartbeats suddenly became clearer, the ones of her friends all on the verge of collapsing.

"Oh my god," Hazel whispered faintly, her eyes watering as Pietro and Wanda did their best to focus on their enemies while concentrating on Hazel as well.

"What?" Pietro asked, concern clear in his voice.

"They're all dying." Hazel's voice broke as her hands moved on her face, hiding it as tears fell down her cheeks.

"You're a monster, you hear me? A monster!" Pietro yelled, still internally fighting to avoid doing anything stupid.

"Yeah, I've heard that before, but being a monster allowed me to create the most functional and impeccable army in history. And you believe it too, or else you wouldn't be here, listening to me."

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