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Patricia Lee

"Sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science."

0 · 173 views · located in Stark Tower

a character in “Avengers Apprentice Initiative”, as played by ABC

Description



Dr. Patricia Lee



“Science works because the phenomenon being described can be relied on to remain the same. Even in quantum physics, where phenomena are changed by observation, the way in which observation interferes is regular and falls within a limited range of possibilities. Human culture, however, has the nasty habit of never staying the same for very long.”


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Image ║Full Name║
Patricia Sophia Lee. She would also like to note that "Dr. Lee", is the correct manner of address.

║Aliases║
While her official S.H.I.E.L.D. codename is Greaser, she finds this rather unbefitting of the work she actually does. She has often suggested alternate codenames, such as Schrodinger, Oppenheimer, Tesla, Rand, and Braun, the last being an amusing pun, as well as a name she feels fits. Of course, all attempts made by her thus far to have it changed have been rejected. Oddly enough though, several of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s official reports see her referred to by one of these, despite the original writers of these reports vehemently stating that they used the proper codename, a situation Patricia claims to know nothing about.

As for a more colloquial name, if she absolutely must be referred to by one, she would prefer Trish or Trisha to Patty or Patricia.

║Birthday & Age║
February 22, 1999 | 14

║Ethnicity║
Caucasian

║Species║
While it has been called into question more than once, Trisha is one-hundred percent human.

║Gender║
Female

║Occupation║
Dr. Patricia Lee has been, in ascending chronological order, a professor of Computer Science, an experimental researcher, a freelance hacker, and now an Avenger apprentice.

Image║Hometown║
Brookside, Colorado. She hasn't been back in quite some time though.

║Physical Description║

Hair & Eye Color
Trish's hair is blonde, and about mid-back length

Height & Weight
4'7ft. and 115lbs. Patricia is rather short.

Tattoos & Piercings
None to speak of. She was busy receiving her scholarship from Oxford, and then figuring out how she was going to attend, around the time that girls where she lived usually got their ears pierced. As for tattoos, while she has nothing against them, she also doesn't have any interest in getting any.

Scars
Amazingly, despite all the laboratory accidents she's caused since joining S.H.I.E.L.D., Dr. Lee has yet to receive an injury severe enough to result in a lasting mark.

Character Color
#0B0B61


║Likes║
✔ Analyzing "magic"
✔ Learning new things
✔ Soda or tea, the caffeine is vital to her not dropping dead unconscious at any given moment.
✔ Being right
✔ The new and wondrous research ability now at her disposal. Now she may unravel the mysteries of the universe in the name of science! And if she happens to develop new and terrifying weaponry, and blow up some things along the way, hey, that's cool too.
✔ Tanks. Artillery in general is a fascination of hers. If a tank is unavailable, she can turn most other vehicles into one, with the right resources, but it just isn't the same.

║Dislikes║
✘ When people refer to her without the "Dr." when she hasn't given them permission to do so.
✘ Having her work needlessly criticized, interfered with, belittled, directed, or otherwise messed with or held negatively without justification.
✘ When people act as though they understand what they're talking about, but clearly don't.
✘ Her codename
✘ Loud noises. Explosions, it seems, are exempt from this however.
✘ Snakes



║Personality║
In everyday life, Patricia most likely comes off as rather standoffish and aloof. She sees little reason to involve herself in conversations if she doesn't have anything to say, or any questions she needs answered, so, while she understands to a certain extent why others choose to engage in idle banter, and may even find some amusement in listening, she rarely engages in it herself. Besides, banter implies some degree of emotional resonance, at a level which she currently doesn't have with anyone. If Trisha does see it necessary to say or ask something, however, she rarely hesitates to do so, sometimes a bit more directly than would be strictly considered tactful. She also usually lacks tone or pitch variations when speaking, and indeed emotional cues in general. Consequently, it can make her rather difficult to interact with at times, as she often seems to lack empathy, and sometimes even feelings entirely.

When she sets to work however, Dr. Lee makes it very clear just by casual observation that she does care about at least one thing. Puzzling, learning, experimenting, and occasionally causing S.H.I.E.L.D. a good deal of grief in expenses as a consequence, is essentially her life. She is always tinkering with, or building, actual physical devices, which is rather odd considering her primary focus is quantum physics. Of course, it does have its tangible applications that she can toy with, it's just that most of them are insanely dangerous. Speaking of which, few people enjoy being in her presence while she's working on something, as she tends to forgo some "excessive safety protocols" to expedite the research. The reason that most take this as their cue to leave is that her opinion of what is and is not excessive often differs from common agreement on the subject.

Oddly enough though, Patricia rarely sees the resulting disasters in a negative light, instead joyously declaring them a step in the right direction. Come to think of it, that probably says a lot about who she is, and what she's working on. Speaking of, more than one technician sent in to clean up after her has asked if it's really necessary, or safe, to be completely frank about it, for her to be in possession of some of the materials that she is. Of course, given who he is, Tony Stark would probably fund Trish, even, or especially, if S.H.I.E.L.D. stopped. A final note on her research: while she claims to be working on unraveling the secrets of the universe, her work seems to result in an awful lot of weaponized vehicles and devices.



║Powers, Skills, & Talents║
[+]Education – Patricia's formal education includes a very brief trip through the public school system, followed by her studying for four years in Oxford on a scholarship to earn her doctoral degrees in quantum physics and computer sciences. She also spent a short time as an educator, as a professor at MIT, but that's about the extent of her formal education.

Beyond that however, she is brilliant, almost to the point of ludicrousness. Were her current work being published, it would shake the scientific community to its very core, though to be fair so would just about anything involving Asgard, or most of the other things she works with. Even so, she tends to make most child protegees look normal by comparison.


[+]Combat – She can fire a gun. Depending on what kind, she might also be able to find the safety trigger and how to reload. Aiming on the other hand... Well, not ideal, to put it politely. She's a bit better with a mounted weapon though. She can also be rather difficult to read, both in the traditional, and more literal sense, in the case of any telepaths, other mind-reading/affecting beings. Her extremely analytical mind might also help her in this field, assuming of course she ever gains the other skills for it to supplement.


[+]Domestic – She can cook fairly decently, she did live on her own for two years, though actually coercing her to do so is another matter entirely. She can also play a few instruments, though she rarely finds occasion to do so.


║Weaknesses, Disabilities, & General Flaws║
[-]Physical – She's fourteen, so physical strength and endurance are obviously not her strong suits. She's also not especially coordinated, though not quite clumsy.


[-]Oddities – Where to begin? Well firstly, she has absolutely no loyalty toward S.H.I.E.L.D. whatsoever. That isn't to say that she doesn't agree with their goals, saving the universe is usually preferable to the alternative, or is unwilling to work with them, her best work has been done while on their payroll. Rather, she just holds no loyalty for it as an organization. Secondly, Trisha can be quite self-involved. Not selfish or self-obsessed, just sort of absorbed in her own thoughts, and forgetting to acknowledge other things. This does not tend to lend itself well to social interactions. This leads directly up to the next point, she has all manner of oddities that make socialization problematic. She obsesses over things, she doesn't look people in the eyes, she often speaks in a meandering fashion, and she often fails to exhibit appropriate social cues, such as tone and pitch variation, or any decipherable body language. She also finds it difficult to focus on something when an alternate thought of greater interest presents itself. Additionally, she seems unable to speak down to people, using terms and referencing studies even if she's well aware that the listener is not familiar with them. Finally, Patricia has a... questionable affinity for weaponry, particularly experimental and of her own design, and installing it into vehicles and devices. Sometimes these things don't belong to her. Sometimes she forgets to tell the people that they do belong to.


[-]Mental and/or Emotional –
A great deal of Patricia's difficulties are outlined above, so this will be made brief. While she has never been formally diagnosed, many, including herself, believe that she may have Asperger’s syndrome. She does more than meet the diagnostic criteria, after all. She's also not an especially patient person, though that itself is by no means a disorder.



[-]Medical – While not technically an addiction, Trisha uses caffeinated beverages to assist her in staying awake more often than she would usually be able. Consequently, she doesn't tend to sleep much, and with an extremely irregular schedule when she does, and usually doesn't even know what time it is without something to reference. She is also asthmatic, though this hasn't really caused her any major problems so far.


║Equipment║
※Weapons – A few things in development at the moment, a notable example being a zero-point energy gauntlet. When fully completed, it will allow the user to create a centralized anti-gravity effect on a specific object, as well as allow said object to be moved around, pushed, pulled, etc., as the user pleases, through that same gravity altering force. The device isn't finished yet though, as, while it is technically capable of preforming the functions for which it was designed, Patricia has yet to come up with an interface to give the user complete control, without being too cumbersome or conspicuous.


※Vehicles – While she doesn't actually have a driver's license, there are a few vehicles that are pretty much hers, even if the names on the papers say otherwise. Two of which are currently worth mentioning. The first is a modified drone fighter jet that resides within the Helicarrier and is affectionately named Sammy. The second being an old car which Trish is using to experiment with time travel. It hasn't had any resounding successes yet, but she has been able to make the space it occupies become distorted.


※Sentimental Items – None on her person, though one supposes Sammy would count.


※Gadgets – Depending on how its used, the zero-point energy gauntlet could count as this as well as a weapon. She also has her S.H.I.E.L.D. issued phone, though she barely uses it, and always has it set on vibrate, so as not to disturb her while she's working quite as easily. Finally, she tends to carry a variety of little gizmos and gadgets with her, among them a recorder, which she leaves on in case she falls asleep in the middle of a meeting or something.


※IDs – Her passport.


║History║
Patricia Sophia Lee was born on February 22 in the year 1999, to Mary and Roger Lee, a lower-class income couple living in Brookside, Colorado. She is. to this day, their first and only child. From a very early age, it became readily apparent that she was exceptionally intelligent. No-one could quite say why this was the case, the trailer park they lived in was hardly the most conducive atmosphere for intellectual growth after all, and neither of her parents were of even average intelligence, though they didn't fall too far bellow that line. Perhaps it was merely a perfect genetic cocktail that just happened to arrange itself just so, by whatever infinitesimally slim chance.

More to the point however, Trisha advanced incredibly quickly in mental acuity, and at ten months was already speaking, writing, reading, and walking To their eternal credit, Patricia's parents noticed, encouraged, and assisted in this as best they could. mostly by bringing her down to the library and such. While she was unable to actually start school early, she rocketed from one grade to the next at breakneck speed once she finally did, even graduating high school at the age of eight. Throughout this time, she obviously found it rather difficult to speak with her "peers", whoever they were, and didn't really make any friends as a result. She didn't seem to mind though. By this time, the wunderkind was known not only within her own town, but apparently widely enough in the academic community that one day, shortly before her graduation from high school. a letter arrived in the mail, offering her a scholarship to Oxford.

Unfortunately, this caused some turmoil in the Lee household. They couldn't afford to keep renting their current place of residence without her father continuing to work. There was also the fact that, while he did not deny that it was an excellent opportunity for young Patricia, he did not think that moving to England would be best for any of them. Her mother on the other hand, believed that moving was a great idea, for even more reasons than just Oxford. For one, if they lived frugally, all three of them could live perfectly fine without needing to have a job, and if Roger felt more like working than spending time with his wife, it wasn't as though jobs didn't exist across the pond.

In the end, this argument served as the catalyst for a divorce that had been long in the making, and resulted in Patricia and her mother flying to Oxford, and leaving Roger back in the states.

During Trish's slightly less expedited trip through higher education, her mother Mary found a nice man, by the name of Shaun, that she eventually decided to marry. While Trisha herself doesn't really have any opinions on this decision, or particular feelings one way or the other about Shaun one way or the other, she will admit that he is a nice enough fellow. Regardless, by the time the two actually married, it wasn't much of her concern, as she and her mother had already determined that she'd likely be returning to the US to teach. This was part of an arrangement that had been worked out when they first moved; upon graduating Patricia, with the consent of her mother, would be legally emancipated, and so free to pursue her own career and interests.

After moving back, Dr. Lee sort of drifted from job to job, first finding out that, surprise surprise, students at MIT tend to not appreciate being taught by a then twelve-year-old, and that she actually didn't have the patience or motivation to continue instructing them with this being the case. For a short time after this, she held a research position in a nuclear facility, but quickly found it to grow dull when waiting for results to come in. Eventually, it occurred to her to put her computer talents to the test as a freelance hacker-for-hire. This, it turned out, was something she was quite good at, and she was soon making enough money to retire from the research job.

It was this way that she ended up sneaking her way onto S.H.I.E.L.D.'s list of registered students at S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Academy of Science and Technology. This actually proved entertaining for a bit, even if there still wasn't as much freedom as Patricia would have liked. The ruse didn't hold up for long though, nor quite frankly should it have, she was only fourteen of course, and rather obviously so. When it was discovered how she managed to get in, and how well she had been scoring, it was decided that the higher-ups might want to get involved.

The "higher-ups" that responded to the call in this case were Bruce Banner and Tony Stark, who had planned on contacting her with their offer anyway, before she dropped off the map after her research work that is. While both were impressed, Banner warned against such... clandestine actions against S.H.I.E.L.D. in the future. Tony, on the other hand, seemed to find the situation quite amusing. As for Patricia, well she didn't really have any other choice but to accept the offer of Avenger apprenticeship now. Besides, S.H.I.E.L.D. had excellent facilities, and the apprenticeship ended up giving her a lot more creative freedom in her experiments than she had had at the academy. Director Fury didn't seem to care for her much, at lest as far as Trisha observed, but approved her for the initiative despite this.

║Extra║
Nothing not already mentioned.

So begins...

Patricia Lee's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee

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#, as written by ABC
Dr. Patricia Lee

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Outfit / Outfit




Patricia looked up from her laptop with a vaguely maniacal grin. She had just hacked J.A.R.V.I.S. again. Over the week or so, Trisha had an extremely poor sense of time, since she'd been placed here after being accepted as an apprentice, ironically for the exact same reason she was kicked out of the academy, she had decided that one's hacking skills grew dull if not sharpened by frequent use. As such, she had taken to infiltrating the systems of her mentor's AI, and tampering a bit.

Of course, she never did anything especially malicious or even permanent. Like yesterday, when she had edited its speech files, causing it to speak exclusively in Spanish, with an outrageous accompanying accent. Or just now, when she had changed the calendar so that Mr. Stark would be receiving a reminder that it was the birthday of one Virginia Pots. This message would also be delivered again tomorrow, and the next day, and so on until either Tony or J.A.R.V.I.S. itself reset the calender. Speaking of which, this was why the AI was such an excellent practice system for hacking; it evolved. Every time she did this she needed to use different tactics, and adapt to the changes it had made in its system. The best comparison that Dr. Lee could currently come up with was a sparing partner, though that analogy was still flawed as well, as a large part of the point was to keep J.A.R.V.I.S. from realizing that she was breaking in.

Well, regardless of semantics, this 'match' was over, and Patrica was tired. What she was not, however, was so tired that sleep was absolutely required. This being the case, she lifted her soda from its spot on the desk...

And despaired at finding it empty. That had been the last one she had in here, meaning that she'd have to leave all her work in here, and waste time getting new ones. Ah well, she needed more empty cans anyway if she was going to build her aluminum, (okay, seventy-five percent aluminum, and twenty-five percent tin) spy drone. It was more of a pet project than anything else, but it still seemed like a pretty cool idea.

So, with this in mind, Patricia stood up, slipped on her lab coat over her pajamas, why exactly she wore a lab coat outside of a lab was occasionally called into question, but never mind that, and as a last second thought, fitted her zero-point energy gauntlet over her right hand and forearm. Never was it not a good time for a a field test.

Now that she was on the subject, it occurred to Patricia that Tony Stark was providing an awful lot of funding for her ideas, which were deemed by most to be 'dangerous and outlandish'. She couldn't help but wonder whether he actually believed that they would work, or if he was just keeping her happy. Not that it actually mattered, The money would keep coming regardless.

She was still fiddling with the thing's holographic display when she walked into the kitchen. Oddly enough, there were already four people there, none of whom she knew. The youngest of them did look a little familiar, as though she'd seen her picture somewhere at some point, but Patricia couldn't actually identify any of them. For a moment, the Oxford graduate merely stood there in her pajamas and lab coat, her gauntlet's display still showing the glowing white keypad, staring in confusion before coming to the conclusion that these must be the other apprentices. They weren't coming until Saturday though, from what she heard. Were they here early? Oh goodness it was Saturday now wasn't it. Last she''d checked it had been Thursday evening.

Noticing that the group seemed to be doing awkward introductions, some more so than others, Dr. Lee merely edged around the young lady drinking on the kitchen floor, in an attempt at getting to the fridge. She had been planning on opening it and getting a soda with the gauntlet, but there was a slight possibility that the device would just hurl the refrigerator off of the ground, and socially clueless as she sometimes could be, even Patricia knew that hitting someone with a large kitchen appliance was not usually considered 'starting off on the right foot'.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger

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When Ken arrived at Stark Tower, it was a hard to keep his bags up. Not from how heavy they were. He hadn't walked that far from his apartment and the bags weren't at all heavy for him. He hated to admit it, but he was nervous. Ken knew this was a great opportunity, but something still bothered him. The fact that they wanted him in the program made sense. He was more then capable and his strength was definitely a standout factor, but he found it odd they would either consider him. After all, he was a former member of HYDRA. Sure, it was unwillingly but if he had a say in the applications, Ken would have dissmissed himself immediately. Clint probably had to fight tooth and nail for him to be considered and as he walked into the tower, Ken knew he wouldn't waste that chance.

When he walked through the door, a heavy set man lead Ken to the elevator ,introducing himself as Happy. Ken first thought it was an odd name, but then again his new code name was Titan, so who was he to judge.

As he heard the notable ding from the elevator reaching the 93rd floor, he was surprised at how much time as well as resources had been put into this floor. However, the first thing he noticed was the small group forming nearby. They all seemed to be around his age, but two of the girls were noticeably younger then the others. They were at the most in their late teens, which gave Ken an unsettling feeling. If S.H.I.E.L.D. was recruiting people this young for the program, they had to either be extremely gifted, or Director Fury was pretty desperate. He also noticed that the eldest looking girl of the group had a bottle of booze in her hand. Not wanting to introduce himself just yet, he quietly walked around the group and found the wing where he guessed his room was as it had a metal label of his code name. It had no knob, but as he fiddled with it, the door released a scanner which Ken placed his hand on. "Agent Titan. Avenger Apprentice. Identification verified. Welcome to Avenger Tower, Mr. Krieger." a voice said from nowhere as the door slid open. "Crap." Ken thought to himself, figuring the others must have heard the unknown voice as he quickly darted into the corridor and found the door marked Titan, which opened for him quickly. After dropping his bags on the floor, he marveled a bit at how large his room was. The bathroom alone was larger then his last apartment. "Stark must have put a lot of money into this place." he said to himself, walking towards the desk next to the bed which had a duffelbag marked with his name. "You have no idea, Agent Krieger." the voice emerged from out of nowhere again which made Ken jump a bit. "Don't be frightened, Agent Krieger. I am just the artificial intelligence of the building. I am called by most J.A.R.V.I.S." "J.A.R.V.I.S. huh?" Ken spoke as he picked up the bag and heard the undeniable sound of metal clanging. "Do you know what's in this bag then, J.A.R.V.I.S.?" "I do not know it's contents, but I know that Special Agent Barton had it sent for you." Ken opened the bag, revealing a plethora of high end tools used in Ken's favorite hobby; crafting and carving. Among the various metal tools and odds and ends was a single metal arrow. Ken knew it immediately as one of Clint's just from the style, but the tag it held gave more insight. "Good luck. - Clint" Ken took off the tag and placed the arrow on the desk near the bed as he sprawled out on it, resting his head on the soft pillow taking in everything at once. He would be working with Earth's mightiest heroes from now on with apparently some of the brightest the world had to offer. Ken only hoped he could do the company he know kept justice. He would have fallen asleep if he hadn't heard more of the commotion from down the hall. So, with a deep sigh of annoyance, Ken got up from the bed and returned to the group outside. "My name's Ken, if we're all introducing ourselves." he said to the others, again his eyes moving towards the bottle. "Should you really be drinking that? You're gonna wanna be as sober as possible for what comes next. Just a feeling I have."

The setting changes from manhattan-new-york-city-new-york to Stark Tower

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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“Hi. I'm Amara.” Astrid already knew someone had come behind her, having heard the elevator. But by the time the elevator had opened the blonde had already polished off her first bottle and was halfway through her fourth with little intention of stopping before at least six bottles were resting in her stomach. Holding the bottle still against her lips she turned and watched as three more people filed in and introduced themselves one after the other, a light smile playing on her lips as she continued drinking.

“Uh, hi. I'm Jasper,” said the tall blonde Caucasian male. Astrid simply sat quietly, figuring she would introduce herself last. “Hello... The name's Dorian. Pleasure to meet you all.” Funny; He didn't seem all that pleased to be there meeting them. She knew his face though, a friend of a friend that she knew of. He was a mutant too. But her gaze was drawn to a girl that looked younger than the first, donning scientific attire. She watched as the younger female edged around her in an attempt to get near the fridge. Astrid wiggled across the floor to give her room just as another male made his grand entrance. “My name's Ken, if we're all introducing ourselves. Should you really be drinking that? You're gonna wanna be as sober as possible for what comes next. Just a feeling I have.”

There were a lot of ways she could reply to that and as she stood up, moving closer so that she was less than a foot away as she stared into his eyes while drinking the bottle, she thought of all those replies. She finally emptied the bottle and offered a light smile. Before she could open her mouth though, another male's voice called out. “I wouldn't worry about her, gringo. I shit you not, this chica once went through five kegs of rum before she even got buzzed.” Astrid turned and smile, embracing the young man of darker complexion with a tight hug. “Jax! How the hell did you end up here?” She was happy to see the lying little klepto, overjoyed to have another familiar and friendly face in the strange new world she had been pulled into. She was instantly glad though that all the rooms were accessed through biometric scanners.

“Chica espía maldito.”

“Tiene usted también, ¿eh?”

“Sí. Así que ¿cuánto saben ellos... También. usted sabe.”

“No lo sé, pero voy a averiguar.”

“Deshacerse de los archivos que consiguieron en su vida?”

“Depende de cómo va esto. No me gusta la idea de una organización gubernamental supersecreto saber tanto como donde yo vivo.”

“Si las cosas se ponen sucias que me conoces y Dorian le ayudará a salir.”

“Cómo caballeroso.”

“Tú me conoces, soy un caballero en armadura mojado.”

“Que en realidad es bastante gracioso.”

The two shared a back and forth reunion as the curly haired Cuban known as Jax grabbed two more bottles and tossed one to Astrid, the two throwing them back as though drinking water. Jax's brown eyes found his old friend Dorian and a smile lit up his face. “Been a while. How's it rockin'?” Astrid shook her head with a light grin as she finished up the bottle in her hand and watched Jax grab her sugar glider for the small creature to make a nest of his hair. “I'm Astrid and this is my friend Jax. These are my awesome sidekicks: Bastille, Talisman, and Jade.” She pointed out the animals, carrying an air of bravado as her pups barked. “I'm not actually here to do anything. I'm just cooking for you guys.” It wasn't a complete lie, not really. She had yet to decide if she wanted to actually fight, being a pacifist for the past few years. But she also wasn't going to eat anything that anyone else prepared so she figured she might as well save herself from looking picky or uppity by cooking for everyone else while she cooked for herself.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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#, as written by Cloud
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Before girl on the floor could answer, the dinging of the elevator from behind AJ indicated another arrival. AJ turned slightly, allowing herself to include the newcomer and the girl on the floor in her vision. He was a young man, although still older than herself. As he introduced himself as Jasper, slightly awkwardly AJ thought, her eyes darted from his face to the tattoos on both wrists and back. She was good at noticing the little things, you had to be when operating on brains and such. Before she could mention his tattoos the elevator dinged again and the doors opened to reveal another young man.

The newcomer seemed to inspect the room first, his eyes wondering across all the modern surfaces and façades, before finally coming to inspect the three people already in the room. He skirted around the group until he was standing by a window. AJ felt a smile spreading across her face. Despite the queer feeling that seemed to be reverberating from the young man, or maybe because of it, she was thrilled. There was something decidedly different about him, something that suggested to AJ that he might be a mutant. She certainly hoped her quick deduction was correct, having only met one mutant in her life she was keen to expand her knowledge on their capabilities. He introduced himself as Dorian and AJ had to stop herself from giving him an excited wave.

Luckily the entrance of another potential member of the team drew AJ's attention before she could get too over-excited. A girl walked out from the direction of the bedrooms, her mind clearly occupied with whatever gadget she was fiddling with. She wore a lab coat over a pair of pink pyjamas and AJ would have made an educated guess that this girl was another child genius like herself. Amara certainly hoped so, it always made conversations so much more interesting having someone your age that could mentally keep up with you. Most adults either found AJ's intelligence slightly unnerving or talked down to her, at least until she'd put them in their place. The girl didn't introduce herself, rather she edged around the other girl sitting on the floor in order to reach the fridge.

It was about this time that another person entered the apartment. AJ just caught sight of a broad shouldered back as the young man quickly walked around the group and entered the bedrooms. However, he reappeared a moment later and introduced himself as Ken, also taking time to remark on the girl's drinking habit. Rather than reply the girl stood up, stepped close to Ken and finished off the bottle, a smile playing across her face as she did. AJ was suddenly glad she hadn't remarked about the girl's drinking when she had first entered the apartment. Before Ken or the girl could speak another person entered, a male who seemed to be good friends with the girl.
“I wouldn't worry about her, gringo. I shit you not, this chica once went through five kegs of rum before she even got buzzed.” AJ's eyes flicked with interest from the new man, named Jax if the girl's greeting was anything to go on, to the girl herself. It wasn't humanly possible to drink five keys of rum without dying or at least needing your stomach pumped, to suggest that the girl could do so without becoming drunk or even tipsy could only suggest that she wasn't quite human. Of course, Jax might have been exaggerating... a lot, but AJ hoped not.

AJ followed their Spanish conversation with one part of her mind, while the other began to hypothesis what particular mutation would allow someone to down an impossible amount of alcohol without feeling the effects. She was only pulled out of her thoughts when the girl formally introduced herself as Astrid, introducing Jax and her dogs at the same time. She went on to mention that she was only there to cook, an idea that AJ highly doubted. AJ didn't think the cook would be breaking into the alcohol collection, but she held her tongue since she didn't really think it her place to comment.

Instead AJ turned to face the whole group, "I'm Amara," she said in greeting, waving a hand, "But feel free to call me AJ, everyone does."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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Dorian let the voices fade into the background buzzing as he stared out the window. Sure he still caught what the words were, but they didn't register as much as an attentive person would. It was only to a certain slang voice that Dorian turned to see a man that he hadn't seen in at least a year: Jax himself. While his real name was Fernan, Dorian hadn't heard a single person call him that since he was a teenager joining the gang. Jax and him went all the way back to the beginning years of the gang; as Jax was the only kid around his age that wasn't on drugs all the time, Dorian had found himself gravitating towards him more often than not. Jax had always been the guy to steal anything right from underneath people's noses, and Dorian had been the one to plan their daring escape and cover ups; and if need be, fight. They had done a lot of jobs together, seen a lot of shit together, and bonded in a way.

Dorian shook himself awake somewhat, his visit with nostalgia beginning to fade. That had been a long time ago, and Dorian had severed all ties with the gang after he accidentally killed Justin to keep the gang out of his miserable life during the early stages of his mutation. The Spanish was oddly harsh on his ears, as Dorian was fluent in Portuguese instead - and yes, there was a difference, no matter how small others would claim it to be. However, he still made out most of the sentences, missing a few words that were probably just pronounced weird in Spanish. The words came to a halt as Jax grabbed some more alcohol for him and the girl, who was starting to look familiar for some reason beside his old friend. It was then that the Cuban recognized Dorian, and that old smile he knew so well lit up his friend's face.

“Been a while. How's it rockin'?” Dorian was slightly speechless at his friend's casual tone - after all, he had severed ties with the gang in an abrupt and not-so-clean manner. Yet it seemed to not bother the man little, as the tone was just like it always was; laid back and chill. Dorian had always wished he could be so relaxed like his friend, but he had never been so lucky. Instead, he was dealt with the hand of the socially unstable budding sociopath. It wasn't like he could change the fact that his morality was nonexistant, but there were days when Dorian wished he hadn't grown up in such a dark light. Perhaps he could have salvaged something then - but maybe that was what this program could become.

After a slightly pause for Astrid - Dorian did know her after all - Dorian gave his friend a nod and a smile, albeit a little hollow. "I've had better days, but I've also had worse. So far... not bad. Another pause from the mutant, as he didn't know how to structure this question appropriately. After musing over it a few seconds, he just decided to speak and see where it lead. "So... how have things been with you? Still running with the guys, or has that ended?" Dorian instantly realized that his sentence would instantly be classified as pretty shifty, but he couldn't help it. While he disliked his former friends, the gang was what raised him and gave him purpose: it was hard not to still feel somewhat sentimental towards them, even if they were most likely on unequal ground.

While he waited, Dorian gave the girl that spoke called Amara an odd glance. He had noticed that she had looked at him in an unusual way earlier, as if she was intrigued by him or something. Was he really that interesting of a character? Sure, psychologists thought him a fantastic person to practice with, but other than that he never saw anything that was worth studying or exploiting about his personality. So perhaps she wanted something else? Dorian mused over it as his gaze shifted to Astrid, whom he finally recognized as a friend of Jax's. He had seen her a few times before, even said greetings to her once, but that was about it. But what was that line about cooking? Was she just their chef? Sounded like a bizarre occupation for a young adult, the chef to a league for freaks.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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Jasper stood to the side as more people came through the elevator, bringing their total number to seven. He noticed the dark haired girl, Amara as she had introduced herself, turn her attention to the tattoos on his wrists. Jasper was used to people staring at his tattoos, so he thought little of it although it felt like Amara's glance was more that cursory. Nothing about her seemed casual. The last person to enter was a Hispanic looking guy. Looking around the group, Jasper noticed that they were all around the same age. No one was beyond their early twenties. Their collective youth made Jasper curious. That had to be others on the SHIELD books who would be better qualified, older and therefore with more experience. They would take less training and would be wiser to the protocol. Other than keeping his mouth shut, Jasper was fairly unsure of the different protocols. As the group introduced themselves, Jasper committed their names to memory, going over the group several times until he was sure he wasn't going to forget. There was still the newest arrival, the girl with the bottle and the blonde girl in the lab coat who were to introduce themselves.

“Jax! How the hell did you end up here?” The girl on the floor asked, identifying their most recent companion as 'Jax'. Well, that solved that mystery, Jasper thought.

Jax and the girl began conversing in rapid Spanish, making Jasper a little uncomfortable. This was obviously meant to be a private conversation, and yet he could understand every word of it. Jasper looked around the room, suddenly finding the ceiling lights immensely interesting. They were talking about Agent Romanoff and something about files. Unable to help himself from following the conversation, he began to get the impression that Dorian and Jax had been involved in some pretty shady business before being picked up for the initiative. He'd have to be on his guard if that was the case. The girl on the floor finally introduced herself as 'Astrid'. Jasper neglected to remember the names of her dogs. He wasn't much of an animal person anyway.

"Agent Romanoff. El espía que estás hablando, ella se llama Agent Romanoff." He explained, giving away the fact that he could understand them. It felt strange on his tongue to be speaking Spanish but have to pronounce a Russian name. The stresses on the throat and mouth were entirely different between the languages. Jasper cleared his throat, something that was a habit for him when he was switching between languages, "Figure its best for you guys to know that I'm fluent in case you were wanting to have a private conversation or something."

The setting changes from manhattan-new-york-city-new-york to Stark Tower

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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#, as written by ABC
Dr. Patricia Lee

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'For what comes next'. That was what Ken had said. 'Next' implied immediacy. Well, if something important was going to happen soon, Patricia supposed that she couldn't head back to her room. So, trying futilely to open the can of soda with her gauntlet, her other hand being the one holding the can, she looked around at what she supposed were to be her teammates.

First there was the drinker, Astrid, judging by her recent introduction. That girl who claimed to be here to cook for them. Not the best first impression a cook could make, nor did it seem especially likely that drinking all the kitchen's liquor was normally a part of the initial inspection of what one had to work with. Her conversation with her friend wasn't exactly suited for someone who had shown up to cook anyway, unless she was some food-based assassin. No, the truth wasn't entirely clear yet, but it was blatantly obvious that she was lying. Next was this 'Amara' person. Trisha was beginning to get a clearer picture in her mind for where she had last seen this girl. If she was not mistaken, Amara was none other than Amara Chaplin, who Patricia had read an article about a few years back. If that was indeed the case, and it would make a certain amount of sense for it to be so, Dr. Lee could do with the services of a good neuroscientist, particularly if she was going to make the zero-point energy gauntlet work as she intended it to.

Speaking of which, this tab seemed impossible to remove. The glove made her fingers unable to slip under it. Switching hands made it no better, as her left hand was simply not currently strong or coordinated enough to pull of the offending aluminum (and twenty-five percent tin) protrusion.

Jasper, it seemed, had a bit of respect for the woman known as Black Widow, though it was possible that she merely misinterpreted that part, while Jax, if his choice of wording when describing her, despite obviously knowing her name, was any indication, did not. Already, she could tell that this would be interesting. Perhaps only interesting in the way that a train wreck was interesting, but hey, as long as it didn't interfere with her work, she didn't especially care.

Before she moved on to the others though, Patricia though a bit more on this whole 'Spanish' thing. Did they, for whatever unbelievable reason, assume that no-one else in the room of super-geniuses and intelligence agents knew Spanish? Obviously, though perhaps not to them, Patricia knew Spanish. She wouldn't be stupid enough to switch an AI exclusively to a language that she herself did not understand. Or did they perhaps merely not care? The latter would make a bit more sense in that regard, but it wouldn't explain some other things, such as the nature of their conversation, and would raise the question of why they bothered switching languages at all.

Ken seemed to be fairly sensible, but that was all that she could gather on him at the moment, and even that was at least partly a matter of her own opinion. As for this Dorian character, an odd name that, he was, apparently, in a gang of some kind, based on his particular choice of phrasing, at least Patricia had never heard it used in any other context. Other than that, he seemed interesting enough, but not likely to just hand out information. It was astonishing how interesting and infuriating this combination could make people.

Finally having had enough of the blasted soda can, Trisha set it briefly down on the counter, tapped in a few quick 'calculations' on the glove's holographic keypad, they weren't really calculations so much as educated guesses, a major flaw of the Z.E.G. was that was impossible to use precisely without mounting it on a turret, and utilizing a few whiteboards to write out the proper calculations, before pointing it at the can. At this point, Dr. Lee had largely forgotten the other people in the room. There was science to be done, although it could only really be called science by someone who was being a bit generous.

For a moment, all went exactly as planned. The gauntlet glowed a silvery blue-white, and the can lifted off the counter as though suspended in some sort of zero gravity field, which, though a gross oversimplification, was technically what it was.

Then the can exploded. Cola and debris spun around in a foot-wide sphere, as though orbiting some invisible planet, large bubbles forming in the airborne liquid. Since there was no lack of air, the sounds of fizzing soda and tinkling of metal slivers bumping into one another could be heard, after of course the initial crunching and popping sounds were through.

"Right." Patricia commented flatly."Forgot about that." Well, chalk it up as another learning experience. She should probably seek Amara's advice and improve the gauntlet before actually using it for anything important though.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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The woman approached Ken, drinking an entire bottle while she walked until she was less than a foot away from him. She let out a small smile as she released the now empty bottle from her lips, but before he could respond, another male voice carried through the room. In response to this, Ken backed away and turned toward the noise, noticing another man closer to his age exit the elevator. Ken was surprised however as the woman and this new person seemed to know each other. He was confused even more when the two started speaking what Ken guessed was Spanish. Some of the words seemed slightly familiar, but he heard one as clear as day and what the blonde haired guy reminded him of shortly after; Romanoff. Ken had met the woman known as Black Widow once and suffice it to say, it was a very odd experience. It was a mix of respect and fear and overall, Ken didn't get much enjoyment out of the meeting. Then again it might have been because when he met her he was with Clint and even with his lack of social awareness, things were definitely weird between the two agents.

The pseudo sound of an explosion going off snapped him back to reality as his body jerked towards the noise out of instinct. Ken stared on as the blonde girl from before somehow exploded a whole can of soda, but more frightening was the fact that some of the bits and pieces of metal and liquid were floating in mid air. Ken could even hear the fizzing of the drink as bubbles formed around the area of the incident, all of which floated around like gravity was almost nonexistent.

"Right. Forgot about that." the girl said, calmly shrugging off as if it was normal to blow up a can with a mechanical gauntlet and have the pieces glide and sway in the air. "Are we gonna talk about that or are we all just gonna pretend like that's normal?" Ken said, motioning towards the tiny mechanic and her experiment, looking around hoping the others would pay attention. It was when he was doing this he recognized one of the faces in the room. It was faint, but Ken knew he had seen this guy at the academy somewhere, the same guy that eavesdropped on Jax and Astrid earlier.

"You said your name was Jasper, right? Are you from the academy, because you look kinda familiar?" Ken asked him, trying to place his thoughts of everything that was happening around him.

The setting changes from manhattan-new-york-city-new-york to Stark Tower

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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“I've had better days, but I've also had worse. So far... Not bad. So... how have things been with you? Still running with the guys, or has that ended?” Jax gave a light shrug as he tilted the bottle all the way to finish his drink before tossing it away and speaking. “Nah, I stopped running with those idiots a while back. Not too long after you left, actually.” After Dorian had left everything seemed to fall apart with their old gang. It wasn't the same without him and everyone had gotten frustrated and ornery. With his mutation alone, he was the strongest of the group. Everyone had wanted to elect him new leader before he left and after he did, everyone fought to take over. Jax was quick to leave and be his own man for a while, taking more jobs for the Andretti family. He was in the middle of retrieving some very incriminating evidence from the 88th precinct's evidence locker with the help of some of the family's associates when Natasha nabbed him.

He put his conversation on pause, his head turning along with Art's to stare down Jasper, both with amused expressions on their faces. “Es de mala educación entrometerse en las conversaciones de la gente, ¿sabes? ¿Y quién dijo que la conversación fue privado de todos modos? No todo el mundo nace en los Estados Unidos habla reflexivamente Inglés. Tal vez te sorprenda ... Pero nuestras familias enteras hablar español todo el tiempo que estamos juntos. Es indignante, ¿verdad? Un montón de viejo amigo Cubanos habla español juntos. No te cago. Sucede.” The hybrid gave a teasing smile and stuck out her tongue but made a mental note and wondered who else could understand what they were saying earlier. The two would have to be careful of their words around these people. They were so used to people either not understanding their words or their context or people understanding and minding their own business. She had no doubt any one of these others would roll over on each other to gain favor in the eyes of one of the Avengers. Perhaps a couple of them weren't even training, really. Maybe they were just spies for S.H.I.E.L.D. The possibilities of what exactly was and could be going on was making her head hurt and she had to pause to finish off her drink, highly aware of the looks she and Jax were getting from Amara.

She gave the girl her own smile, studying her for a moment before disregarding it as simply the excitement she was sure they were all feeling at spending the next however long among celebrities and heroes. Jax parted his mouth to speak but both he and Astrid jumped when a can exploded behind them to their right. Jax even let out a girlish scream, a good laugh for Art. He elbowed her in the ribs, though she hardly felt it. With a grin, she snickered a little more. “Are we gonna talk about that or are we all just gonna pretend like that's normal?” Astrid's eyes moved to the male that had previously questioned her drinking, a brow lifting. So, he was the cookie cutter type. Clean cut. Follow the rules. Her grin spread wider. “Because working with a man in an iron suit armed with arc cannons, a man who turns into a giant green rage monster, and a man who can bench press a small car is the human definition of a normal workplace. Not to mention the Scandinavian god.” Again, her tone was teasing.

“Glad to see you enjoying my good stuff. Try to come to work sober tomorrow, alright?”


“Uh... Hey, guys.”


“Are you old enough for that?”


“Oh, she's fine.”


“Let the girl live a little. Instead of asking about the bottle in her hand, what about the floating soda?”

The Avengers, minus Thor, exited the elevator with an assorted mix of smiles and smirks. The lot of them were dressed casually in jeans and graphic tees, hardly looking like superheroes that had saved the world not so long ago. Still, Jax and Art grinned at them, a bit of unease settling in Art's stomach. She still had plenty of doubts; Not just about her usefulness to the team, but what others would think of her and where she would end up. “What we're going to do now, is be lazy and do a trust exercise because I really don't feel like doing shit right now. And Tricia, you might want to tweak down the voltage on the gauntlet and maybe switch the orange and silver wires.” Tony clapped his hands together and stepped ahead of everyone. Steve simply rolled his eyes, obviously having gotten used to but not entirely approving of Tony's usual demeanor. “To elaborate on Mister Stark's words, we're going to be spending a lot of the first few weeks getting to know each other. Trust is critical when working on a team.”

“We know that true, deep trust is earned and not given freely, but we cannot begin to work on the more complicated exercises until we know that we can trust each other.” Natasha made her way to the couch and sat down, offering a light smile, speaking in a semi-professional tone. “Obviously, there is the possibility of not liking someone on the team, But you don't have to like someone to trust them. If your disdain for someone here comes between you and the common goal you will be removed from the Initiative. Words from Director Fury himself. So, play nice.” Clint gave his own smirk, moving towards Art and taking the bottle from her hands and chugging the rest himself as though they'd been friends their whole lives.

“It might seem silly, I know, but many of the exercises we're going to be doing won't really seem like... well, trust exercises. It'll basically just be hanging out and getting to know each other. Honesty is a key here. Lack of honesty is something that caused a lot of problems when we were first thrown together and it's what helped us in the end.” Bruce's words made Art squirm a little, subtly averting her gaze as though suddenly her fingernails needed to be checked, using her toes to play with her little Corgi jumping to bite at her sock. “We had an extra, but Asgard seems to be having some stuff going on so we'll worry about that later. In the mean time, our home is your home. Hope you enjoyed the sheer awesome that I've given to you. So, be grateful.”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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More words. It seemed to be the only thing that these people could exchange - one would wonder then, if these words had any meaning to them at all? Within the gang, Dorian had been instructed to speak only when needed to, and let your actions do the talking; those that broke that rule were brutalized often. Yet this group seemed to just like to talk, which was oddly heartwarming - it was different than the gang, and certainly different than the loneliness he had created around himself for the past two years. It signified a change in his life, one that would hopefully blossom into something beautiful: like a battered, near dead cat that had finally been taken in by a pitying stranger to grow up strong and loving.

Metaphor's aside, Dorian quite enjoyed this group so far. Jax gave him the run down on his position in the gang, or lack of thereof: “Nah, I stopped running with those idiots a while back. Not too long after you left, actually.” Dorian nodded, and said nothing as he processed the information. So it would seem that if Jax left, the gang must have fallen into disarray - apparently he had been a bigger factor within the syndicate than he had thought. While at first it felt heartwarming that those who had punished him were fighting and destroying each other, it was also slightly sad; they had raised him, kept him alive for all these years, and this was how they went out. Quite depressing how things went, but Dorian had no control over human impulses: only their fears.

Cutting back to the group, Astrid began to speak in Spanish once again, with only snippets and fragments making it to Dorian's Portuguese-driven mind as he pieced together something about how they didn't care. Sure, people always said they could never tell the difference between the two languages, but to him they were vastly different: the only words he caught on to were the ones that sounded similar to his native tongue, and those that Jax had tried to teach him. The explosion had almost been missed by Dorian, but he had caught it - well, mostly because Astrid and Ken pointed it out. Regardless, Dorian stayed at the fringes of the conversational hedge, peering in like he always did, watching them with soft intent.

The voices behind him startled Dorian, even though he thought he had gotten used to hearing foreign voices when you could hear and smell fear. The Avengers themselves came from the elevator, looking oddly mundane for a group of super humanoid people - then again, Dorian doubted he looked like material for this project either, and here he was. Their voices mingled together flawlessly as they stood near the elevator as they exited, before Mr Stark stepped forward. Dorian got a very stereotypical reading from the man; very confident exterior, yet many small fears that accumulated constantly into larger problems. Dorian didn't know what they were - and honestly would rather not know - but that didn't mean he wouldn't find out later on in the Initiate. Mr. Rogers spoke next, a more formal tone than Mr Stark to clear up the confusion that Dorian had gotten. Currently, no inkling seemed to give itself to Dorian, which was a plus for once.

However, it was the elaboration of Natasha that unnerved Dorian: trust exercise. They were expecting him to trust these people? How in the hell was that going to work out well? Dorian didn't want his skepticism to be that visible on his face, instead a wariness replacing it. They should know how difficult it was for Dorian to trust anybody nowadays; Natasha was even the one to expand on it. But that was probably their plan, to get him out of his 'comfort zone'. Well, they already achieved that - when the other Initiates found out what he could do, trust would be almost nonexistent. Trying to follow the conversation, Dorian caught an odd air of fear from the man known as Bruce Banner: it was as if he feared everything, and nothing at the same time. He had seen this type of fear before, but it rarely came up. Then again, he was housing an indestructible rage monster within a tiny frame, so there was that.

But again, he had to go and say something Dorian seriously didn't want to hear; the importance of trust. How could he trust them? Hell, how could they trust him? How would they feel if they found out he could murder people in their sleep without even targeting them, and that putting him in the same room as others while asleep was highly dangerous? Dorian didn't know how this was going to work, and didn't like it at all. Yet it wasn't like he had a choice: while Natasha hadn't known about the murders, she did know about his mutation and what it could do. The only options he had were to go with her to be under their watchful eye, or survive on his own until he screwed up.

Tony ended the more words about how awesome he was, or something; Dorian was beginning to fade fast from the conversation. He needed something to do to keep him awake - after all, he hadn't slept for a few days now, and would rather not sleep on his first day with these individuals. However, Dorian did have a question for the Avengers, so after Tony wrapped everything up, he cleared his throat softly to get at least one of their attentions. "So... when you speak of trust exercises, exactly what kind of methods are you proposing for mostly complete strangers to trust each other?" He was about to add the part about how the gang did it, but decided against it: after all, he was trying to relearn about morality and what other people thought of as appropriate. It wasn't getting far, but it was better than nothing.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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#, as written by Cloud
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Amara could definitely say with some certainty that the Avengers Apprentice Initiative was not going to be dull. Her eyes glittered as they darted from person to person, taking in everything from their physical appearance, style of dress, possible strengths and weaknesses, and spoken language. It appeared that quite a few of the new team spoke Spanish, Amara including herself in the count as well as the number of people that had spoken it. She was curious to know why exactly each person had been chosen for the Initiative, questions were already queueing up in her mind ready to be asked. However, Amara bit her tongue. She didn't want to come across as rude this early on, besides they would have plenty of time to get to know one another in the days and weeks to come.

An explosion pulled AJ from her thoughts and her eyes snapped around to see a cola can exploding in all directions. A sliver of aluminium can sliced passed AJ, missing her head by a hair's width. "Right... Forgot about that." The young woman in the lab coat said flatly. Any thoughts that AJ had had earlier about the girl being another young genius were only confirmed by this episode, the intriguing apparatus on her hand was proof enough of that. While AJ wasn't particularly talented in mechanical areas, at least not to the same extent as her surgeon knowledge, she did always find modern technology extremely fascinating. She mentally promised herself to ask the younger girl about her gadgets. Amara had had some exciting ideas over the years regarding improving medical equipment, but had always lacked the technical know how in that area. Perhaps this was an opportunity to amend that?

Before her plans got away with her AJ was once again pulled out of her thoughts, this time by the arrival of the Avengers themselves. She grinned at Tony Stark and Bruce Banner, the two that had recruited her, before casting a curious gaze of the others. She was mildly disappointed not to see Thor, both because of the genetic curiosity he represented and because he was a bit of a babe. Make no mistake though, she was definitely star struck. After Tony Stark and Bruce Banner her eyes were drawn to Captain America. She had studied to various reports and studies done on the serum that altered him, including the one that had created the Hulk. None had yet found the exact formula that would perfectly recreate him, and while Amara had no interest in creating an army of super soldiers, her interest was purely scientific.

As AJ listened to the Avengers outlining the importance of trust, Amara glanced around at her new team mates. It seemed a pretty heavy request to ask a group of strangers to trust each other right off the bat. AJ could list all the psychological reasons why that wasn't going to work. Already some of the team members had had sharper than expected words with each other. On the other hand, trust needed to be established if they had any hope of working together in the future. She had seen it many times in the surgery when new doctors came in. Those who hadn't heard of her, or those who were determined to prove that she belonged back in high school didn't trust or respect her. As a result reaching the end goal was that much harder. She could only hope that these exercises would do the trick. She wasn't the only one who seemed to question these trust games,
"So... when you speak of trust exercises, exactly what kind of methods are you proposing for mostly complete strangers to trust each other?" Dorian, the one with the strange aura, asked.
"Please don't say we have to fall back and catch each other. It's such a cliché." Amara added. The game, in her mind, was pointless and would probably not help improving the team's trust one bit. Although, if Stark had anything to do with the trust exercises she would sure that they would be a lot more interesting then that.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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Jasper gave a half smile at Astrid, picking up on the teasing in her voice, “I’ll bear that one in mind and memorise the demographic of America,” He said, dropping all presence of an American accent, switching to his native English,“My experience has been somewhat limited up until now.”

Before Astrid could reply, his attention was caught by a silvery blue light coming from the kitchen. A blonde girl was standing there with a can and a strange glove. Jasper watched the can floating in mid-air. He wasn’t much of a scientist, so while they might have some super complex, smart sounding reason for why the can was suspended, but ‘floating’ was a good enough explanation for why it was happening for Jasper. Then the can exploded. His body reacted on instinct at the loud crack, jerking down slightly, turning his head away, before he realised that none of the debris was getting beyond a foot away from the explosion. Jasper stood upright, looking at the debris floating in mid-air, the hissing of the fizz dying down as the soda went flat. As first days went, this one was already pretty weird.

“Are we gonna talk about that or are we all just gonna pretend like that’s normal?” A dark haired guy, Ken as he had introduced himself, asked.

“Because working with a man in an iron suit armed with arc canons, a man who turns into a giant green rage monster, and a man who can bench press a small car is the human definition of a normal workplace. Not to mention the Scandinavian god.” Astrid answered. Jasper was starting to get the sense that Astrid was someone who enjoyed teasing people, if her interactions with himself and Ken were anything to go by.

“You said your name was Jasper, right?” Ken asked, “Are you from the academy, because you look kinda familiar?”

Jasper looked at Ken, trying to place his face. There was something familiar about his face,“Uh, yeah, Jasper. The communications academy,” Ken’s face clicked, Jasper had seen him at the academy,“Ken Krieger, right?”

The elevator dinged again, and Jasper turned to see the Avengers walk out. It was a little jarring to see them in civilian clothes when he had been so used to the uniforms. The only Avenger missing was Thor. Jasper figured he was back in Asgard, dealing with Loki or something like that. Their attention was initially taken by Astrid drinking; most of the Avengers were unconcerned, only Captain America questioned it. Damn his biceps were impressive, Jasper thought, watching the Captain. Jasper tensed his jaw at the mention of ‘trust exercises’. God, he hated trust exercises. He’d rather just get stuck in and figure out who he could trust along the way, he thought, looking around the group, already trying to figure out who was trustworthy and who wasn’t. Still, at least there were no ice-breaker exercises. Memories of high school introductions were still painful; he had been ‘Jumping Jasper’ for about three years.

Luckily it seemed that Jasper wasn't the only one who was against the idea of trust exercises. Both Dorian and Amara were quick to speak up. Bruce was the one to placate the group “It might seem silly, I know, but many of the exercises we’re going to be doing won’t really seem like… well, trust exercises. It’ll basically just be hanging out and getting to know each other. Honesty is key here. Lack of honest is something that caused a lot of problems when we were first thrown together and it’s what helped us in the end.”

When it seemed that Tony had finished talking, if there was ever a man in love with his own ego, it was this man, Jasper picked up his suitcase,“Well, thanks for the introduction. I’m gonna get on with the whole moving in thing.”
Jasper slipped from the group, down the corridor he had seen the blonde girl appear from. One of the doors was labelled ‘Ghost’, his S.H.I.E.L.D. alias. He pushed against the door, and a biometric scanner appeared to the side. Jasper pressed his hand against it, waiting for the scan to register. “Agent Ghost. Avenger Apprentice. Identification verified. Welcome to Avengers Tower Mr Penrith.”

Jasper nodded to the faceless voice, not all that surprised by the security system, “Thank you..ah?”

“Please, call me J.A.R.V.I.S.”

“Thank you, J.A.R.V.I.S.”Jasper said, pushing the door open into what was now his room. The room was on the smaller side, but he was used to it after a few years at the academy. He checked the other two doors in the room, one leading to a bathroom, the other to a closet. He dumped his suitcase in the closet and began pulling his clothes out, hanging the clothes that needed it, and folding the rest onto the shelves. That done, he searched for the few trinkets he had. The pictures his sister had drawn for him were in the front pocket of the case and Jasper pinned them to the wall. The few toiletries he had went straight to the bathroom. When he had finished unpacking, Jasper looked around his room. It was still a little bare, but it was a start. “Well whaddya think?” He said more to himself than anyone.

“The pictures were unexpected.” J.A.R.V.I.S. answered.

Jasper gave a half shrug,“Sentimentality.”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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#, as written by ABC
Dr. Patricia Lee

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"Are we gonna talk about that or are we all just gonna pretend like that's normal?" Ah, right. Patricia did had Ken pegged as the sensible one after all, and sensible people rarely had positive impressions of her little field tests. At least he didn't seem to actually take issue with it, which was quite possibly related to the current situation, but still.

Before she could explain just what had happened, hopefully allaying some of the large young man's concerns, the 'cook' spoke up. “Because working with a man in an iron suit armed with arc cannons, a man who turns into a giant green rage monster, and a man who can bench press a small car is the human definition of a normal workplace. Not to mention the Scandinavian god.” "Nordic." Also, if you wanted to get technical about it, and Patricia almost invariably did, the suit was actually a gold-titanium alloy, but Astrid was probably just referring to the moniker that Mr. Stark had taken. And, to be fair to Ken, the existence of superscience, mutations, and technological deities did not necessarily mean that one should assume everything existed. The Egyptian gods, for example, had thus far failed to make an appearance.

The others had however, after the initial reactions to hearing an explosion, interesting to see which ones reacted now that she thought about it, it seemed most of them went back to what they were doing previously. Patricia, in the meantime, waited a moment longer for the Avengers to appear, before opening one of the kitchen drawers and pulling out a bendy straw and sticking the end of it into the rough soda planetoid, and trying to drink from it without inhaling any metal. Most of the pieces were too large for that, so that wasn't to high of a risk, but still probably a good thing to keep in mind. She would have just gotten another drink, if she knew what to do with the remains of this one.

That was when the Avengers finally arrived. Having already met at least two of them, the two that, aside from Thor, were most related to her interests, Tricia didn't really bother to do any in-depth analysis of them. The only one present that she'd really bother to do that for would be Romanoff, and she wasn't quite arrogant enough to believe she'd gather any information about her that way.

All the same, she listened carefully, and gave Tony a small nod in acknowledgement of his suggestions. The young machinist was vaguely intrigued as to what this trust exercise could entail, but it was rather irritating that she had to be kept away from her work of it. It was morning now, apparently, so the garage would be accessible, and she'd recently gotten an idea for a fun little engine modification that she really wanted to try out.

Speaking of things that people would rather be doing, it seemed her teammates were a bit dubious about what their mentors had planned. Jasper even walked out of the room entirely, though not without some notice. While Patricia was hardly an expert on camaraderie, it seemed to her that the group had a ways to go before it could truly be considered a team.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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Before Ken could respond to Jasper's question, the now familiar ding of the elevator signaling even more people coming into the already tense space. Much to Ken's shock, it was their mentors themselves, sans the God of Thunder. While he had gotten used to the atmosphere Agents Barton and Romanoff carried with them through his interactions with them and the captain definitely wa someone he respected, Tony Stark and Bruce Banner brought their own distinct qualities to the table.

As Stark talked, Ken couldn't help but feel both impressed and annoyed by every word out of the genius' mouth. The young agent knew for a fact that this was one of most people's impressions of the millionaire. It seemed that you thought Tony Stark was a dick or the second coming. Hardly anyone was in between. And then there was Dr. Banner. The man could probably punch a hole in the sun if he wanted, but somehow he seemed meek and surprisingly calm, considering his condition. Ken wondered to himself how someone so strong hadn't decided to takeover the entire planet, but then again, Ken himself had been asked a similar question during his interview for his apprenticeship. Maybe his reasons were similar to the scientist's.

The Avengers continued to talk and Ken listened with calm ears until the grouo brought up the word "trust", which instantly sent a nervous chill down Ken's spine. The reactions the other apprentices were throwing out didn't help this fact that much as they were a mix of sarcasm and trepidation. Jasper left the room entirely which, Ken had to admit, put him at ease a little. If Ken was going to be outed today as a former HYDRA agent, he'd rather it be out of earshot of the only S.H.I.E.L.D. operative who didn't know.

"So... when you speak of trust exercises, exactly what kind of methods are you proposing for mostly complete strangers to trust each other?"

"Please don't say we have to fall back and catch each other. It's such a cliché."
Two of the other apprentices stated, the second being doused in sarcasm. The question was a legitimate one however. What were they supposed to do? Make a meal together and talk about their lives? Good thing Ken didn't have to come up with the solution or it would more then likely involve live ammunition and a lot of running.

"That's a good question. What did you guys have in mind?" Ken asked the heroes, wondering if he really was in such a rush to trust these new people. Sure, he had some sometimes literal skeletons in his closet, but that didn't mean the rest of his future teammates were what they seemed to be either. Ken learned from experience to question everything and to know when something was too good to be true and the whole idea of the apprenticeship program seemed odd to say the least.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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The setting changes from manhattan-new-york-city-new-york to Stark Tower

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astrid Torres Character Portrait: Amara J. Chaplin Character Portrait: Dorian Mane Character Portrait: Jasper Penrith Character Portrait: Patricia Lee Character Portrait: Ken Krieger Character Portrait: Jax

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It had only been a little over a month but it seemed like everyone was quickly forming bonds with at least one person in their little group of misfits. The Avengers were rather pleased with it so far and were even more pleased with just how much their apprentices continued to show promise. There were plenty of arguments among them as well, two of the biggest stemming from Jax stealing from the others and Tony threatening to remove Patricia if she tampered with his equipment or J.A.R.V.I.S. again. Nobody took kindly to finding their things slowly going missing only to find them in Jax's room and Tony didn't like other people playing around with his things. Other than that, everything seemed to go swimmingly. They weren't exactly all the best of friends but the progress was evident.

Astrid had finally gotten into the ring near the end of June and it was discovered just why she never wanted to be there in the first place. She didn't apologize for destroying the training area, reminding them that she warned them beforehand. Because her lack of control she was only allowed to train with Ken, Steve, and Hulk when it came to using her strength. She was slowly getting better at controlling herself but would regress. When she went into her weeklong slumber she suffered from the horrendous nightmares again, crying out all hours of the night and day. AJ suggested rushing her to the hospital when they were unable to wake her but Jax explained as best as he could her situation, informing them that she would always sleep for the last seven days of every month and there was no waking her until the eighth day.

When she finally woke she wouldn't speak of her nightmares, simply putting on a smile and telling them not to worry. Assuring them that she probably shouldn't have watched so many scary movies before bed. Ken kept throwing her glances but she'd only glare back. She didn't have time for another one of his "talks". She did feel for him but she couldn't let herself get too depressed. She would have to move on as usual. She would bottle everything up and keep it there. Her nightmares would simply be just that. Nightmares.

However, she constantly felt an urge to seek out the man that she grew to see as a grandfather, Charles Xavier, to see if he could restore her memories. She still worked at Xavier's but she didn't see him as often with him so busy. There was a heavy influx of new mutants from all over the globe. She put it on a back burner and tried to focus more on her training. Working with Clint over the past month was actually a lot of fun and she took quickly to subterfuge. Her impeccable eyesight aided her in learning marksmanship from him. Once she achieved a basic level he moved on to teach her about going undercover. The actress was a natural, to say the least. However, she did not do quite so well with hacking. She left the tech to everyone else.

Now

It was July now. Tuesday, to be exact. Astrid had only just woken up yesterday and much to everyone's surprise, the Avengers were gone. She expected them to be back today but they weren't. She didn't worry too much because she figured that they would see something on the news or be contacted by a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent if anything was wrong. She simply went about her day as usual, checking her watch as she rode up the elevator with Happy and Pepper. It was barely six o'clock, giving her more than enough time to have dinner ready by eight.

Happy and Pepper were talking about something but she wasn't paying attention. She rushed out of the elevator to see her pets running around and playing. Grinning, she set out to prepare dinner. “Hey! How about an all around the world dinner? Everyone pick one of their favorite dishes but it can't have the same culture origin as someone else's.”
Astrid called out to everyone as she set the grocery bags on the counter, pulling out a steak and tossing it to Talisman and Bastille, picking up Jade to feed her some lettuce. “The chef is taking requests.”