Ode to 11010201 Redux, Traditions Torn (2018-11-20)

There were an odd number of candidates at the trials.

Normally, this mattered not. Quantity of candidates were less important than quality, and only the best and brightest could join the Premier Witch Council.

But for this particular set of trials, the fact that there were an odd number of candidates was not just surprising but also worrying:

On the full moon after the Premier Gemini Witches died, trials were held to find a new pair of luminaries to replace them.

One candidate had come alone.

“I know what they think of me,” Candidate Chacone says during the final trial, “I know what they said.”

The eleven luminaries remain silent, observing. Judging.

“They think I’ve done something to her, a diabolical thing. Then mutilated myself for more power. An abomination of a Gemini witch.”

Still the luminaries say nothing.

“But she was the one that slammed a wall between us. She’s the one that left me alone, screaming!" 

Some of the younger luminaries at the ends flinch at her tone, but the Premier Taurus Witch at her place in the center merely holds up her hand, settles them.

"My magic wants desperately to harmonize and all I had were the shrieking echoes of myself.”

~

~

For seven hours and thirty one minutes, Luminary Chacone headed the largest, most successful coven in history.

If the knowledge had stayed within their secret half world of magic and marvels, then it would have been a triumph. 

As it is, Luminary Chacone’s actions have brought unwanted attention from the shadowy government organization known as SHIELD.

The magician doesn’t look like anything special, Maria thinks on the opposite side of the glass. Nothing like Loki–grand robes and staff and regal demeanor–but perhaps that had more to do with his alien heritage than his magic.

If Maria had passed by this magician on the street, she wouldn’t even turn around. The magician looks absolutely normal. Absolutely human.

The magician waits, patiently, silently, as she has done since agents escorted her here. No demands for explanations. No pleads to go back. No questions.

How alarming.

This should Coulson’s job. For all that SHIELD is still cleaning up the literal alien invasion, this feels like a peace time interview, or even a recruitment.

But Coulson is dead, and Fury can only trust Maria to do this, never mind that she’s a battle commander and not the deft touch of whatever Coulson was.

Enough.

Maria steels herself and enters, posture impeccable, and the magician reacts by blinking slow and sleepily at her.

“You did something,” Maria begins, a shaky start but not inaccurate, “During the invasion.”

The magician nods, open, “I protected those that I could.”

“More than that,” Maria responds, unable to find words for what she means to say.

SHIELD had experienced losses that day, of course, Coulson one of many. But only from the direct attack on the helicarrier. When the rift was open, monsters from across the universe raining chaos down, SHIELD stood firm. Agents stood back up from hits that should have taken them down, were able to do things that should have been beyond them. For several hours, SHIELD was undefeatable.

The magician huffed a soft but honestly amused sort of laugh, smile curling her mouth though her eyes continued to droop in exhaustion. “A matter of convenient coincidence,” she answers, though Maria hardly had a question formed. “My priority was to ensure that the building would be safe.” Again she laughs, or tries to, “I told everyone to believe that the shield would hold.”

~

A/N: The later bits are related to this long ago Avengers crossover. Just doing some “spring” cleaning of little ficlets and such on my computer.

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Fake Fic Summaries 4/? (2015-07-22)

1) “Due to a series of events not nearly as wacky as expected, Darcy has a legion of various superheroes and villains at her beck and call.

Or, because Darcy technically bested Thor in combat, and Thor has yet to challenge her to a rematch, he and all those he has defeated are Darcy’s thralls by right of conquest.”

Well, originally, it was going to be just Loki as basically Darcy’s disgruntled djinn-like figure. But then I had problems figuring out why it would just be Loki and not Thor or other people Thor have defeated. So then I figured, well, the situation is ludicrous enough that why should I try to minimize it to just Loki. Go all the way!

I figured it would start small. Like, for example, Darcy may just be randomly walking around outside and Loki’s doing some crazy over the top plan, but right as Darcy’s even mildly endangered–Loki, being able to teleport, appears before her and rescues her. Then bristles and runs away. And it escalates. The Doom-bots avoid her for some reason, even when she’s the easiest/best target. Etc. etc.

If someone can figure out a Loki-only variant I would love to read that, too.

2) “According to Nate, Hardison dies in plans C, F, and M through Q. Eliot dies in none. Parker dies in none. Sophie dies in none, though that is subject to change.

How many plans does Nate die in?”

So I was watching Leverage on Netflix, as one does. The series is lovely, but strangely not very conducive to long fic. So, short fic it is.

Anyway, in episode 4×10 “The Queen’s Gambit Job” at the end, Nate literally says that Hardison (usually) dies in seven plans. And it’s played off as comedic, but my first instinct was to flinch. Because… why Hardison and none of the others?

But then I realized, Nate didn’t say how many he died in. And, probably, it’s because he died in a lot more of them. So Hardison dying frequently is due in part because of how similar he is to Nate–for the other three, being a criminal was a matter of survival (well, I’m guessing for Sophie). But for Nate and Hardison, they became criminals because they were good at it. So their priority isn’t always to survive, it’s to make sure the plan/team survives. Hence the multiple deaths for Hardison. And Nate.

So I guess the fic would be one of those… multiple bad ending formats. Sort of like:

“Plan A fails two hours in, when Nate underestimates the mark’s proclivity for gambling. Instead of falling for Sophie’s charms, he ignores her to stay in the poker tournament.

At the close of the day, Elliot, Nate, and Sophie’s covers have all been burned. There goes plans B, D, E, and K.

Time to move on to Plan C…

Parker is wearing a dress and no harness but she has to get out now so she jumps. She falls six stories. She breaks a leg, but survives, and hobbles out of the building just as the bomb goes off. She cries, not from pain, but because Hardison was still in the server room…

Unacceptable.

Plan G–but in Plan G, Sophie gets arrested. Extradition orders get tangled up, so she languishes in maximum security prison. There is no team to break her out because Elliot is in the hospital, Parker is in the wind, Hardison has also been arrested, and Nate is dead.

Try again.”

Y’know… something like that.

~

A/N: I’m so fond of the fake fic summaries series. It allows me to express plot bunnies which I don’t really want to pursue but would take up brain space if I don’t articulate them somehow.

Darcy Lewis, Keyblade Wielder, parts 4&5 (2015-07-19)

N15: Nowhere and Nothing

Her nightmares, on the rare occasions she does have them, are usually on opposite ends of the spectrum. Sometimes, they’re over-saturated with brightness and colors, flurries of movements and motions. As if all of her adventures with Mickey were sped up and enhanced within the space of one dream. In contrast, there are the nightmares that are just… nothing. An empty void where time has slowed to a crawl, no sights or sounds or warmth. Just darkness.

She wakes up gasping, skin clammy and eyes wet with unshed tears. She knows that it’s PTSD, knows that they’re just memories and remnants of justified fear–she was never in the darkness, had never lost her heart, but still the possibility hung heavy over her mind–but if she has learned nothing else, it’s that the heart and mind are powerful things.

She doesn’t tell anyone. Or rather, had never tried to again, after her parents gently, but mistakenly, dismissed her stories as an overactive imagination. And so it remains a secret.

At least, it does for fifteen years.

C26: Childhood

Her childhood and adolescence were always distinct in her mind. Childhood was saving the world and magic and adventure. It was traveling to other worlds and being a hero and knowing that she could make a difference. Her teenage years featured awkwardness and puberty and secrets. They were spent trying to navigate high school with a body that wouldn’t cooperate and a heart that had once fought for survival.

And yet, from an outsider point of view, one would think that it was a little backward. As a child, she had been shy and quiet, with a tendency to entertain herself than befriend others. But as a teenager, she was outgoing and gregarious, eager to interact with her community.

None of this is a lie, nor is it at all incompatible. Separate though they may be, her childhood and adolescence combined helps prepare her for adulthood.

~

A/N: Blargh, these ones are kind of… blargh. I’m reluctant to post it, but I’m already passed midnight here so 😛

In the same series as this.

Darcy Lewis, Keyblade Wielder, parts 1-3 (2015-07-18)

The nice thing about the keyblade is that it doesn’t really exist. Technically it’s a manifestation of her heart, she can make it appear and disappear at will. Which is extremely convenient because people on this world don’t really use swords, much less swords that look like giant keys.

Except for the basic Kingdom Key which Mickey had given her, the key chain a bright silver silhouette of his basic head shape, she also has what she likes to call the Lorraine Key which is far more convenient to carry around. It’s still a blade shaped like a key, but for the most part, the Lorraine Key is less of a sword and more of a knife–small and understated.

It’s also absolutely fantastic at Wind magic, to the point where she can actually cast it on others. Which, well, she supposes makes sense considering the key chain is a pin that her grandmother gave her: a bird with an edged shield for a body, wings stretching beyond the circumference of a ring–of course it would be good at defensive Wind magic.

But other than that, she has yet to find anything that modifies her keyblade. Simple key chains won’t do it, neither do phone charms as she jokingly tried, or even other pieces of her grandmother’s jewelry (which she was grounded for a week for). She figures that there simply aren’t any other keyblade chains in the world–nothing with enough magical or emotional potential to modify something that literally comes from her heart.

By the time she turns twenty five, she’ll have another seven key chains.

She doesn’t use her keyblade that often, what with Mickey having locked her world against Heartless. And, to be honest, this world isn’t even all that appealing to the Darkness–the heart of this world isn’t as magically powerful as others, despite the high population.

In comparison to literal soul sucking creatures of darkness, the everyday threats of sleaze balls who won’t take no for an answer and muggers are hardly deserving of the term. She uses magic against them anyway (because she’s a big believer in the phrase use it or lose it and magic is just really cool). Mostly Thunder magic because it’s the easiest to explain away as a taser. And also, she could give Zeus a run for his money with how good she is–and she should know, she’s actually met the big guy and he said as much. (Though, to be fair, she was a little girl very far from home who had almost been kidnapped by Hades. A little white lie can be comforting.)

Over a decade later she knocks out a different God of Thunder with her magic and thinks that maybe it’s time to refresh her other skills.

She loves her world. Her adventure across the universe in a spaceship with a royal anthropomorphic mouse had been amazing, sure. Had been incredible and extraordinary and beyond the scope of anything else she would ever find on Earth. But that was just a jaunt–Earth is home.

Earth is messy and fragmented and near void of any cool mystical phenomena. But she loves Earth. And she doesn’t mean the physical planet (though she does believe in everyone doing their part to help the environment) but the people. The cultures and societies and governments. As a ten year old she didn’t know how to explain the idea of representational democracy much less multiple nations with different governments to a talking mouse who happened to be a king of an entire world, but she wanted to even then.

So while it’s a surprise to everyone else that she eventually chooses political science as a major, it really is just her, heh, following her heart. Sure, she’d probably breeze through the CompSci major (a field that really deserves more women in it) but hacking is a hobby for her, not a lifestyle. And even though she’s achieved space travel–something other people can only dream of–it’s as if her journey has only made her more appreciative of her own world.

But that doesn’t stop her from feeling nostalgic for her childhood adventures. And so even though she’ll always be a political scientist at, heh, heart, she signs up for an internship with the (crazy) eccentric Dr. Jane Foster. She doubts a semester of data entering in New Mexico will be anywhere near as exciting as her time with Mickey, but at least she’ll finally get those science units out of the way.

A month later she tries not to laugh hysterically at the irony while she helps evacuate the citizens of Puente Antiguo (though she’s pretty sure she could have taken the Destroyer. Just saying).

~

A/N: Apparently I am actually going to do this. Maybe? Hopefully. Anyway, I’m stuck on a bus for seven hours so I might as well. We’ll see if I come back to it at another time.

Title is subject to change.

And for those of you playing at home, yes Lorraine is the SSR agent played by Natalie Dormer in Captain America: The First Avenger who kisses (or tries to? I don’t remember how far they got) Steve.

Fake Fic Summaries 3/?, The Darcy Lewis crossover edition (2015-07-17)

“Darcy Lewis technically has an older brother named Bennet and a younger sibling named Bingley.

Though it would be more accurate to say that the Lewis triplets have a rather unfortunate naming scheme revolving around their mother’s love of Pride & Prejudice.”

Not sure wtf that’s all about but I just kind of brain fancast Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart (in her more androgynous looks) as Darcy Lewis’ siblings… and since they all code as the same/similar ages to my eyes I’m just like… well… obviously they are triplets.

And I like the idea that maybe Bennet could pass for Ben, but doesn’t because he’s into formal speaking, even if the reference is super obvious. So Darcy calling Bingley Chandler (as in from the show Friends) and Bingley responding to that totally grates.

So I guess the story would be… how the Lewis siblings get tangled up with the Avengers entirely on accident? So maybe Bennet was one of Bruce’s grad students / TAs when the Hulk-ification happened (it’s canon that Darcy goes to Culver but according to MCU timeline, that’s when she was in New Mexico. Maybe they went to the same college.) Maybe Bingley joined the Air Force and is one of the engineers under Rhodey’s command–or even a fellow Pararescue pilot with Sam Wilson. WHO KNOWS.

“Thor is not Darcy’s first experience with life from other worlds.

Though last time there was a mouse and something called a gummi ship involved, so the story doesn’t sound nearly as impressive.”

BECAUSE Disney has subsumed Marvel, and Kingdom Hearts allows for totally canon crossovers. Maybe Darcy’s a keyblade wielder, or maybe she just knows some tricks (Thunder magic, anyone?).

Maybe the matter comes up because Darcy needs to defend herself and suddenly, KEYBLADE AND MAGIC. Or maybe another gummi ship shows up and this time it’s Sora who needs help and since last time Mickey met Darcy he just kind of points him in her direction. So… sorry Avengers I gotta go take care of this real quick, please ignore the talking duck and dog, thanks, okay, bye.

It could be played both serious and crack-y depending on the style and if you want to sustain a long fic or not. I’m thinking, in a Doctor Who-esque sort of way, Mickey showed up randomly in Darcy’s childhood, he took her on an adventure, she helped him out in a minor to her, major to him, sort of way, and so he gave her some kind of cool way to protect herself even after he’s gone.

~

A/N: Two more quick and dirty Darcy Lewis fake fic summaries.

EDIT: Apparently I wanted to do the second one, so you can find three little drabbles of Darcy Lewis, Keyblade Wielder (title subject to change) here

edit2: apparently I also wanted to do a drabble of the first one, so you can check that out here

Untitled Darcy Lewis drabbles (2015-07-06)

Darcy Lewis looks a lot like her grandmother: Rebecca “Becca” Lewis, née Barnes.

When Darcy was younger, in the rare times when she could sit still for longer than two seconds, her grandmother would tell her stories. But that is not such an unusual thing, many grandmothers tell stories to their grandchildren, more often than not stories about their own childhood. But Grandma Becca’s stories were different. Although Darcy would only learn that in hindsight, almost twenty years later.

“They both were such punks,” Grandma Becca would sigh fondly, eyes catching on Darcy’s second-hand Captain America and Howling Commandos action figures scattered on the carpet. They’d been her dad’s originally, and so the paint was a little faded and scuffed. They weren’t like the new versions with the lights and the voices, but these ones were better because sometimes her dad would play, too.

“Even when they were grown men, soldiers, all I could think about was the idiotic boys I grew up with.”

Darcy would nod solemnly in response, because every eight year old girl knows that boys can be stupid sometimes.

“For one of my birthdays, they took me to Coney Island. Which was very fun, don’t get me wrong, but Bucky spent the entire time trying to stuff Steve full of hotdogs and candy then made him ride the Cyclone. I don’t know why they were so shocked when Steve threw up,” she would reminisce, laughing as Darcy wrinkled her nose in disgust, “Yes, it wasn’t a very elegant way to end my birthday. But it was certainly funny.”


Technopath!Darcy (related to this drabble)

She has spent so long hiding her ability, that it comes as a surprise when, somehow, it’s her silence which gives her away.

Tony Stark’s strange desire to collect all of the Avengers–like living, breathing, action figures–in his giant compensation skyscraper extends to Avengers’ significant others and, apparently, said significant others’ BFF/intern.

Which, Darcy isn’t complaining about because it’s rent free room and board in the middle of Manhattan and also, a lot of sexy neighbors. Sure, these neighbors happen to be highly destructive and/or lethal but… well, it’s New York, right?

But living in the Stark/Avengers tower is what eventually causes her secret to become… not a secret. More specifically, living in the Stark/Avengers tower with JARVIS.

See, the thing is, Darcy’s ability doesn’t really make any sense. It doesn’t. She majored in political science, but even she knows that her ability makes no sense. Telepathy doesn’t even make sense, but at least that’s two people’s minds and not whatever she can do. Somehow she can communicate with machines. Which sort of begs the question, do machines have minds for her to communicate with?

JARVIS, she knows, is an artificial intelligence. He can speak and think and do pretty much whatever a person can. So there’s that. It makes sense for Darcy to be able to communicate with JARVIS. But it doesn’t explain how she knows her iPod prefers techno to pop or how her taser wishes it could be used more often or how her phone has a strange fascination with Etsy.

So she treats JARVIS much the same way she does other highly intelligent technology, with as much respect as she does with people. Perhaps more so, because the supercomputer at Culver was a major snob and she knows a lot of people who are nowhere near as great as JARVIS. But the important thing is, she interact with him silently.

Simply put, machines with personalities aren’t anything new to her. Machines with personalities which other people know about and can react to? Yeah that’s what trips her up.

It takes about three weeks before someone notices that she doesn’t need to speak out loud for JARVIS to understand her. The surprising part? It’s Bruce who notices.

~

A/N: Two Darcy Lewis drabbles for the price of one! Wooooh.

Unsure what to do with the Darcy, Barnes descendant drabble. It was just an idea I wanted to articulate. At some point, I imagine Steve and/or Bucky eventually try to track Becca down. Whether they actually find her, aged but still alive, or find Darcy instead I don’t know.

I was going to continue the Technopath!Darcy one with how Bruce keeps her secret since he’s basically the closest thing to a mutant the Avengers have and he kind of wishes the Hulk were a secret. I don’t know why I chose Bruce, but I like the way the story could evolve from there.

Ode to 11010201 x Avengers drabble (2015-07-04)

He’s in the middle of chemistry when he feels a sudden drain in his energy. He begins to droop immediately, face smashing alarmingly close to the lab equipment on the table. He can’t help the pained yell that follows.

“What is going on here?” Mr Lui asks, torn between concern and confusion.

“I don’t know,” he answers through gritted teeth, a strangely empty sensation of pulling going down his spine. He’s never felt anything like this before, doesn’t have a frame of reference for what it might be.

Except… maybe he does know.

“New York,” he tries to mumble, but his face in general does not seem to want to cooperate with him. Not that such a statement would have explained much.

Luckily, it doesn’t have to.

“Teachers,” says Principle Henao, voice somehow carefully mild over the school’s PA system, “I apologize for the interruption, but please turn on your televisions at this time.” She repeats the sentence again, no offers of explanation, no opportunities for disobedience. Homeroom period, when announcements are made and TVs play Channel One–the high school equivalent of a news station–had just ended ten minutes ago. The request, then, is both strange and unproblematic.

What the TVs are showing, is strange and problematic.

All the TVs in school are connected to a central monitor in the main office. Usually set to play only Channel One and the occasional video announcement, now it must be set to an actual news channel.

On the screen a bright red banner reading BREAKING NEWS is at the top; below it footage of what looks to be… some kind of war zone. Rubble and explosions and fast paced everything, details too shaky and indistinct to make out. But the captions say that it’s New York; Manhattan, to be specific.

His aunt works in Manhattan.

His lab partner, the only one to have heard his attempt to speak earlier looks at him sharply. His other classmates stare entranced at the screen. Even Mr Lui, torn between concern at a possibly unwell student and the sheer horrifying devastation on screen, can’t help the unconscious turn of his head.

The draining sensation grows stronger, as if someone is desperately pulling on the other end.

Ostensibly, he and his aunt have equal, complementary shares in their magic. It’s how Gemini witches are supposed to function. But she had never had full access to their magic until he discovered his ability. And Pollux was always more powerful than Castor.

He can hardly hear himself breathe, much less pay attention to what the news reporters are saying on the TV. But something dangerous is going down in New York, and his aunt works in Manhattan.

Go, he thinks to himself, to his magic, to their magic, to her. Go.

Then he lets go.

In the future, when asked about what he was doing during the Avengers’ debut in the Battle of New York, all he will say is that he was in chemistry class. He will not add that he passed out, had to be brought to the hospital, and woke up three days later in perfect health with the doctors and his dad relieved but extremely confused as to what happened to him.

His aunt’s story is much cooler, anyway.

~

A/N: Hahaha, the Ode to 11010201 take on the first Avengers movie. No, R does not get recruited into the Avengers Initiative, because the supernatural world has been trying to keep their existence on the down low. Basically, though, she was fueling a giant ass semi-sentient force field around her company’s building with the help of Zim’s share of their magic.

If you cannot tell, I’ve been reading some MCU fic lately.

I don’t think I’ll continue this, really, it was just a passing idea.