Chapter Eight

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"It is much more than that, my friend"

"Whatever man, it's a trick!"

Christine smiled as she walked into the living room with Maria. Steve sensed their presence and scooted over on the couch to give them room to sit down. Clint and Thor gave a quick nod before going back to their conversation. Natasha, Bruce, Tony, and Dr. Cho greeted them audibly. A man stood up and shook her hand, he introduced himself as Rhodes. According to Steve, who was relaying the information to them, they were arguing over the properties of the Mjolnir.

"They have been arguing for the past five minutes."

Christine chuckled at their antics.

"How are you?" Steve asked

She glanced up at Steve, his eyebrows were pinched together in concern. She hadn't realized that her fainting spell might have worried them. She wanted to lie to him, to tell him that what she did was a fluke. Those blue eyes staring into hers wouldn't let her.

"It happens when I overexert myself" she shrugged. "I haven't used my powers to that extent in awhile. So, my body gave out. I should be okay now."

"Are you sure?"

Christine sighed and patted his knee. "You worry too much, Steve."

Ignoring his look he gave her, Christine finally started to listen in on Thor and Clint's conversation.

Thor motioned towards the weapon. "Well please, be my guest"

"Are you serious?" Clint asks, his eyes widened with glee.

Rhodes nudged Tony "Oh, this is gonna be good."

Clint stands and rounds the table towards the Mjolnir.

Tony nods before interjecting. "Clint, you've had a tough week. We won't laugh if you can't get it up."

Everyone laughed at the innuendo. They all watch as Clint tries to lift it but miserably fails. His face scrunches up in either pain or concentration.

"I still don't know how you do it," He says as he is going back to his seat, defeated. He plops down.

"Can you smell the silent judgment?"

Christine giggles.

"Please Stark, by all means"

Tony's head whips towards Thor. "If I lift it, I get to be the ruler of Asgard?"

Thor nods.

Christine watched as Tony tried—and failed—to lift the hammer. Tony's ego wouldn't let it go and he ran to grab his suit. When that also failed, he brought up Rhodes. They argued while lifting the hammer. Even lifting their feet on the table to do so.

She continued to watch as all the males in the room wanted to prove something. Each one of them failed miserably. Steve shifted the hammer half an inch and Thor seemed scared, for a second. He laughed off his nervousness.

"Christine, why don't you go?"

She shook her head. "Oh no, I can't."

"No one can, it's simple." Thor began, he reached for his weapon and flipped it. "You can not lift the hammer because you are not worthy"

A sound pierced through the air like nails on a chalkboard. Christine almost screamed from the noise. It didn't help that it was exasperating her headache from earlier. She closed her eyes and did everything to try and stop the noise.

Finally, it stopped. When she looked up, a metal puppet was staring back at them. The body looked like it was glued together by a child. There were so many things wrong with it. It jerked its body towards them.Steve stepped in front of her.

"Worthy..." He makes a sound, almost like a laugh. "How could you be worthy? You're all killers."

That struck a nerve with Christine.

"Stark" Steve calls out never taking his eyes off of it.

"Jarvis" Tony inquires

Christine began to summon her shadows, she kept them at bay but was still ready for a fight.

"I'm sorry, I was asleep...Or was I a dream?"The thing tilted its head to the side.

Tony began to tap on some device claiming he had a buggy suit. Christine knew better than that though. The thing began to talk more about being tangled in strings. It eerily sounded like a twisted Pinocchio. She heard it take a step forward but Steve was blocking her view from looking. She was about to sidestep him but he predicted her move and grabbed her wrist.

She glanced at him, a scowl prominent on her face.

"...I had to kill the other guy. He was a good guy."

That put Christine on alert and her shadows appeared behind her. She started to think about all the other people he could have killed. Looking around, she noticed that everyone was located in the living room.

"Jarvis?"

That was when it started to make sense to her. "He killed Jarvis," she said before she could control herself.

"The girl is right. It wouldn't have been my first call, but in the real world, we are faced with ugly choices. She seems smart, I like her"

A chill went down Christine's spine.

"Who sent you?"

A crackle is heard before a familiar voice is heard. "I see a suit of armor around the world" Christine peeks at Tony from the corner of her eye and sees him blanch.

"Ultron?" Bruce asks.

"In the flesh," it answers, raising its arms. Wires are hanging off his arms and she could hear the scraping of metal with each movement. "Or, no, not yet. Not this...Chrysalis.I'm ready. I'm on a mission"

"What mission?" Natasha interrogates.

Something resembling a smile appears on its face.

"Peace in our time."




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