Chapter One

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Christine glared at Fury over the rim of her mug, debating on whether or not she should leave. The thought crossed her mind many times in the few minutes that they had been in the small cafe.

She looked around at her surroundings. The pale green walls and wood floors would have given anyone a warm feeling. Christine took the time to glance at the people around them, most of them smiling or on their computers. She thought about the times that she would come in here and just sit, trying to soak in the happiness. Trying to forget where she came from, what she did, and what transpired from it. For a moment she would forget.

A moment.

Her grey eyes shifted back towards the man in front of her. The welcoming cafe a complete antithesis to the cold, distant feeling amongst them.

Fury spoke first. "How are you?"

She could tell that he didn't really want to know so she stayed silent. He rolled his eye at her attitude, but he knew that she hated small talk.

She leaned back in her seat, her eyes never leaving him. "Cut the bullshit, Nick. I told you I never wanted to see you again."

He didn't say anything.

"Then you send your errand boy after me. To what? Take me out?"

"I was testing you"

She scoffed. Of course he was.

He took a gulp from his cup of coffee before answering. "You ever heard of the Cuckoo birds?" Christine rose an eyebrow and he took that his cue to continue."They're parasites, they lay their eggs in another birds nest and leave. Letting the bird unknowingly feed a baby that isn't even hers. But of course, she doesn't know. After a while the cuckoo starts to grow bigger, demanding for more food. To the point where the parents forget about their own children and allow them to starve to death. Finally, the cuckoo gets bigger and flies away, to do the same thing. It's all a sad thing really."

Cuckoo Birds has always been a code amongst the two and he wasn't surprised when the girls eyes darted around the cafe. Her eyes landed in the man that was behind them and her posture changed. He would have seemed like a normal customer on the computer in a cafe. She looked closer and could see the earpiece he had in. Fury motioned towards the window they were sitting by, subtly pointing out the man who jogged by three times in the past ten minutes. Catching the hint, she flicked her hand allowing for two identical shadows to be put up.

Christine grabbed Fury by the arm, and ushered him outside of the building. Fury looked back at their previous seats and found two shadows that looked similar to them. They were both hunched over the table, mimicking a conversation. To the naked eye, they looked like them. If you looked closer, you could see that it was the bending of light.

Fury continued to walk along Christine,who wasn't acknowledging his presence.

Christine began to speak. "We have exactly seven minutes before they realize something is up."

Fury wasted no time. "I need you to go back in the field."

Christine almost stopped in her tracks. "Why? Because S.H.E.I.L.D has been compromised? I heard it fell a couple weeks ago."

"That is exactly why." Fury rubbed his bald head. Getting frustrated with the woman in front of him. "The Avengers, they seem to have lost their way. Running around trying to find the tesseract."

Although Christine wasn't apart of that life anymore, she knew exactly what he was talking about. She vividly remembered the attacking on New York and how that ended. Thousands of people died and the others were displaced. All because of some ignorant god and his vendetta against his brother.

She knew the power the tesseract had, she could feel it from her place in Brooklyn.

Even though she was very informed on the recent events, she was surprised to hear that the stone was still on earth. She felt the tesseract leave the earth with the two gods. So why were Earth's "mightiest heroes" going after it?

Her curiosity got the best of her and she asked.

He answered her question vaguely. "I can't help but to ask that question too"

She examined the man beside her and saw the tension in his face and shoulders. He was stressed and she could tell. After knowing Fury for many years, she had only seen him this stressed a couple of times.

"Listen old man, I told you five years ago that I was done. I told you in New York, I was done. So I'm going to tell you again, I'm done."

"It's only one job, you can't tell me that you don't miss it!"

"It's never really one job with you."

Fury stayed silent.

A sarcastic laugh filled the air between them.

"I miss my sister. I miss her laughter and being able to call her on the phone. I miss her hugs, the smell of her hair. That's what I miss, not the job." She said

Fury closed his eyes and sighed. "I'm sorry about your sister."

Christine blinked away the tears in her eyes.

"But we have all lost family, you were a hero. You helped save thousands of people. You inspired people to stand up for what was right and against any enemy this earth had. There are still whisperings about the woman who saved this earth long before the Avengers. Are you really gonna let that legacy die?"

She though about his words and remembered the grateful looks of the victims. Everyone applauding her as she helped men, women, and children. She would never admit it, but she truly did miss it. "Time's up, old man"

He nodded stiffly.

She stopped at the end of the street they had been walking on. There was an intersection and Christine could see her apartment from where she stood. In front of her, an SUV was parked. She knew that it was for Fury. It was silly of her to believe that he would come alone. He began to walk to it before turning around. Fury handed her a flash drive.

She raised an eyebrow at him and he placed it in her coat pocket. "If you change your mind, just plug it in."

He left without a goodbye, climbed in the back of the SUV and disappeared into the night. She stared at the empty space he was standing before sighing and making her way back home.


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