Siberian Spores part 2: Outbreak

Summary:
May 15, 2014: After escaping the FBI, Evelyn and Domino are taken by chopper to the Triskelion where they meet up with Hawkeye once more, and a few more less than friendly faces. It turns out that all three of them are sick, highly contagious, and they just brought it into Fury's home. (Language and graphic textual imagery.)

Triskelion

S.H.I.E.L.D. Headquarters based in New York City.


Characters

NPCs

  • Nick Fury
  • Jane
  • Various S.H.I.E.L.D. personnel.

Mood Music:
None


The chopper still beat the sun as it touches down within the Triskelion, Hive Prime for all of SHIELD operations. They already knew who was onboard one of their birds well in advance, resulting in certain preparations being made. With the rotors of the jet black bird winding down and fresh rainwater trailing random rivers down the fuselage onto the deck below, the side doors barely have a chance to draw open before it's surrounded by security detail with weapons trained upon the lone craft.

From inside Domino never bothered to pull the mask off of her face. Maybe she's just that worn out. Maybe she's hoping to keep her identity hidden from all of these people. Hell, maybe she's just embarrassed that she screwed up so badly. But, when the doors open she comes stepping down and out into the open, a small yet striking figure all in black in direct contrast to the wide bay's harsh lighting. All four pistols still remain holstered. The belt-fed automatic support weapon is, in fact, still in her hands.

Naturally, someone makes a point of making the call first. "Weapons down!"

(I can take 'em,) the albino sourly thinks to herself while looking at all of the agents lined up through narrowed eyes, each of them just waiting for their kill command. Fingers slowly tighten around the polymer grips of the heavy weapon in her hands. (Be done here and on my way in under five minutes-)

The gun suddenly falls heavy upon a shoulder strap as her left hand leaps upward, ripping the mask from her face and flinging it aside as she falls to her knees and one palm, vomiting a sickly black goo across the floor. Her pale white skin has taken on an unnatural greenish tint. Both eyes are bloodshot. Even the veins can be noticed, blackened in hue.

She won't be fighting anyone else today.

*

Evelyn is here, present on the bird and prime retrieval for the night, second only to Domino. She appears to be well, and she steps out of the craft just after Domino. 'Those are a lot of guns,' she thinks to herself, quite an observation. In the ever universal sign of surrender, she raises her hands a little bit while she quietly eyes all the agents in the room. Well, Hawkeye said she'd be safe. Out of the frying pan, hoepfully, and not into the fire.
Turning, she looks over just in time to see Domino spew onto the floor, and Evelyn can only reach over her mouth to cover it, making a sick sound herself. The disgust causes her to start coughing and wheezing into her hand, but she recomposes herself fairly quickly. Quickly enough to desparately say, "Take her to the medbay. Please." They're even. For now.

*

Agent Barton (in this moment) has been reasonably quiet in the trip in the helo towards the HQ after extraction. Quiet in words, anyway. He's still looking like a flu has overtaken him, sounding very much like a respiratory infection by the way that he's coughing, his lungs making that attempt to escape his body. Leaning back, he doesn't seem to notice the noise of the chopper blades, the whine of the engine, even when the tempo changes, signaling a decrease of speed and altitude.

One of the bay engineers has to nudge him before blue eyes open slowly, blearily. Once touchdown hits, and the bay doors open to the agents on the ground, Clint moves slowly and deliberately, rising to his feet, only to reach out and grab one of the bars above the door. Domino's emptying of the contents of her stomach on the flight deck gains a wince, and he reaches out to grab the fallen gun, throwing it to one of the agents on the ground.

Jumping from the helo, Clint wobbles a little but regains his balance by holding out a hand to steady himself. He doesn't sound as if he's repeating that which Evelyn had just requested, but it's mostly the same.. "Medbay would be good…" though in a tenor that sounds almost.. off to him. Or more to the point, them. (No hearing aid!)

*

The fact that Barton looks almost as bad as the albino makes one of the senior agents take the request fairly seriously. A call is put out not just for medbay, but for a biological hazard containment unit and related protocols. Because, the black goo isn't recognizable as 'normal' spew. Which means they don't know what the hell they're dealing with. But they've seen it before, and recently at that. Not only was it in the latest briefing, but there are containment efforts happening elsewhere in New York, already.

Consequently, within moments, med staff and hazmat certified personnel are surrounding the three, wrapping them in iso suits, forcing them into wheel chairs or onto gurneys, and hauling them down to a biomedical containment unit.

*

(Huh. Well. That's not normal.)

Part of Dom's thoughts are wondering what the heck she had for breakfast that would have resulted in such a thing. The same part of her thoughts helpfully remind her that she's not had solid food in some time now, having instead fallen to a fairly regular diet of rum.

When the chaingun is pulled away she weakly says "I'm gonna want that back later." Resistance, however, is largely nonexistent. It's another stupid twist of fate that she winds up not only in the last place that she'd ever -want- to be, yet also one of the few places on this side of the globe that would have the ability to save her from this infection. Sometimes all that X-Gene happens to care about is keeping her alive, her own comfort and thoughts on the matter don't matter one bit.

Ev's request about medbay is responded to with nothing more than one thumb held up in the air in her direction. Notion seconded.

While getting fitted into containment gear she passes Hawkeye a weak grin. "You look like shit, Barton." Says the lady that can barely stand on her own power anymore. Next she turns to one of the agents that's pushing her into a wheelchair, casually asking "You got anything to drink?"

Not only did she show up at the Triskelion deathly ill and substantially well armed, she also arrived here three seconds shy of being -drunk.- Right after a major firefight!

It's going to be an interesting day.

*

Evelyn moves over to help Domino up, steadying her as gear arrives to assist. Out of the trio, she's probably looking the best. Anyone touching her, however, is likely to get a surprise burn. While she's not actually hot enough to _burn_ someone and cause damage, her body temperature is easily in the 120 Fahrenheit range. Despite not looking quite as sickly, she does appear to be having quite a bit of trouble breathing as well.
Gently setting Domino into a wheelchair, Evelyn's soon guided onto one of the gurneys and fitted with equivalent gear. Any type of heart monitoring devices will detect a pulse which is normal, but she should be dead at this temperature. It's fortunate they know she's the android. Right? They know that. Surely. For it would be awkward if they didn't quite realize that.
"Barton, was that thai food poisonous?" She muses between a sick wheezes, "Did you sneak some to Domino?"

*

Blink. Blink.

Hazmat.

Hazmat?

It's just the flu—

Barton doesn't argue with the order. It makes sense.. mostly. Domino sick, Evelyn.. can she get sick? He—

Oh crap.

The fuzziness in his head makes it hard to work out connections or correlations, but if they're sick? Clint has to take hold of something, someone, in order to actually get into the suit. "Tell the Director that I brought a friend," he manages. 'A friend'. Well, that'd be Evelyn; about whom he'd actually called ahead. Not a lot of data, mind, but something. CIA bred, advanced AI. Enough to get the techs working to dig into their files, anyway. Domino, well, she was a surprise on this one.

He can see Evelyn's lips moving, but it's not a skill he's yet perfected, having come to it later in life, as it were. 'Thai' is caught, and Clint shakes his head. "Checked out." SHIELD sanctioned restaurant? Huh. Go figure!

"And you look like hell yourself, Domino.." Who said he's completely deaf?

*

SHIELD personnel are among the best in the world. This makes them entirely efficient at dealing with the current crisis. It also means at no point are the three left alone or, frankly, allowed arms. Even Clint's weaponry is gently eased from him, with the promise it'll be returned, "After the doc gives the okay." But, they've seen too much of this thing not to take the precaution.

Like everyone else at the agency, however, the CMO's top-shelf, too. A small woman with brown hair tied back in a sensible roll, a mess of light bangs fringing her face, wearing a hazmat suit, moves with purpose among the personnel confirming the contagion. "Three more," she says softly to herself, before raising her voice and giving crisp orders to see the three isolated properly and started on the first round of suppressants.

The fact is, they don't have an antidote, yet. They're still working on it, but for now? It's a cocktail of anti-virals, anti-biotics, and, of all things, anti-fungals… i.e. alcohol. That, and something that's supposed to help respiration.

Techs are in the middle of administering a dose to Evelyn when one of them says to the CMO, "Doc, this one's burning up. We haven't encountered fever like this before."

"Are you the AI?" the doctor guesses, crossing in two quick steps toward Evelyn. "Get someone from mech R&D up here to consult," she tells one of her interns.

Even as the young man is turning to execute those orders, a grizzled voice comes from the direction of the bay doors. "What the hell have you brought into my nice clean headquarters, Barton?"

"I'm sorry Colonel," the doctor says quickly, now, raising a hand as she moves to block his ground-eating strides across the room. "You can't be in here without protective gear."

He turns, reaching out to take the mask that's offered him by a nearby, ever-so-helpful tech, jamming it on his face. He gives the doctor a pointed look, as if to say, 'Better?'. She quirks her head a little, but steps back to let him pass.

*

Thank goodness Domino's got armor which helps regulate body temperature or she may well have gotten that surprise burn from Evelyn, herself! That the little android femme is helping her at all is a little surprising in its own right. "There'd better not be a bill for this," she undertones to Ev. Then, "Hey, do you guys cover dental? Think I'm due."

Maybe it's too early for the medical staff to figure things out, but whatever this fungal nonsense is? It originated from two of the people now in the building. Evelyn and Dom together represent the proverbial Patient Zero. The android must have her own tricks to fight it. The albino… Booze and blind luck, more than anything. She's managed to keep its growth in check despite spreading it to dozens along the way, dozens which have already become host bodies for billions of spores to grow.

It's possible that she's not yet aware of this.

Being disarmed of -all- of her weapons nearly results in one of the security officers getting punched in the face for his trouble. It's the principle of the thing, she knows she's not going to win the debate.

Then… Then someone of particular importance arrives. "Heeey, -Fury!-" she calls out with a broad grin and a hazmat suited salute passed his way, so long as she's still got use of her arms. "Fancy meeting your ornery old ass out here."

First impressions, they matter!

*

Evelyn chills on her rolling gurney, this is the sweet life. The first pat down reveals only a switchblade knife for a possible weapon, but not a single firearm. She even helps by fishing out her ID and handing it over. Evelyn Wolstenholm, license to kill, CIA agent. It's expired now, obviously, given the CIA's attempt to capture or possibly elimate her.
She doesn't have to do anything but sit here, wheeze, and cough. She's tired, but probably not because of the fungal infection inside of her body, but instead because of all the tribulations that have been required just to get to this point. Her humour and vigor are gone, so she doesn't even try to stop the medical personal from administering doses or doing biological checks against her platform. When the doctor approaches her with said question, she only replies, "Evelyn." She's the machine. There's only so much she can even register, but colonel badass gets a good look.
"I'm sorry," is all Evelyn can say to Fury. How's that for a normal greeting.
Another assistant wearing a hazmat suit quickly approaches the brunette. Her hair is short, pixie cut and her glasses thick rimmed. Haphazardly, she just sort of says in a quick pace, "Cleanup's reported a few of the corpses have begun moving, miss." And although she anticipates questions regarding the nature of the behaviour, she just continues with, "I'm just the messenger, containment sent me from mechatronics." Well, that's some convenient timing.

*

It's the sidearm Clint carries that is taken first, and it makes sense. The bow, however… it's his! Yes, yes.. it'll be returned, but there's a weak grab for his equipment before he's hit with a wave of coughing again, but in a hazmat suit, there's nowhere to spit.. and there's no way to wipe his mouth.

Turning about at the sound of the Director's voice, Barton blinks before he points to the side of his head. "Sir… sorry about this, but.."

But..?

"It had to be done."

Domino's actions, her fighting the agents, he moves to intercept, but he's weak… but he's still not completely willing to hit one of the gurneys quite yet. There's still more of a debriefing that probably should happen. Wobbling, Barton tries again. "That's Evelyn. She could use some tech help…"

*

"Stow it, Thurman," Fury says automatically to Domino. "You're lucky I didn't have them shoot you on sight." A beat. "I still might." (There's a reason she called him ornery, after all.) "So, sit down, shut up, and let us try and save your sorry ass." Hers and a lot of other people.

"Doctor," the CMO automatically corrects the tech, when she's called 'miss'. There's no rancor in the tone. It's an automatic correction. "Moving?" That's more interesting to her, actually, than the correction. "Define moving," she says. "Post mortis reflex or something else?" Because, this is S.H.I.E.L.D. Weirder crap has been known to happen.

Meanwhile, the Colonel grabs Clint by the suited shoulder and pulls him over to a chair. "Sit your sorry ass down, son," he tells him, "and let the doctors do their jobs. That's what I pay them for." Then, to the general crowd of technicians, "And would someone please get this man a hearing aid? I need him to be able hear what I'm saying if his mask's going to keep getting all gummed up like that."

Of course, the techs are actually busy constructing little plastic bubbles around the three of them, so that they can get them out of the suits and start working on them in earnest. Nevertheless, when Fury says 'go', people go. Which means it'll only be a matter of minutes before Clint's hearing aid is replaced.

*

"I'm beginning to think that you don't like me," Domino replies to Fury before a coughing fit interrupts what would have been another smirk. "I only give you shit because I care, you know that."

(Die in a fire, you one-eyed bastard.)

At least she's not -physically- lashing out at others anymore. Silver linings, and all. At this point it will be more beneficial to her to cling to what freedom she's got left rather than smack people around until more of it is taken away. Getting saved -does- sound nice and all, though she still needs to figure out how the hell she's going to get -out- of here later.

Because she's too goddamn lucky to die. -Not- like this.

For the moment she relents, instead looking back to Evelyn. "Welcome to your new home, kiddo. You've got yourself one hell of a new father figure."

The discussion between Barton and Fury soon has her sneering anew. Seriously, Clint's an -archer.- How the hell do you lose your hearing -firing a bow?!-

Once more to a passing tech, or guard, or whatever, she says "Hey. If I start to hallucinate or something, that means it's time to bring me another drink."

The bit about people moving doesn't escape her notice, though she's happy to make people believe she's not paying any attention to it. No information is useless, particularly around places like this.

*

"I feel like I have daddy issues already," wheezes Evelyn in response to Domino. She reaches up to her mouth to cough a couple more times. The coughs continue to get more violent, and it almost sounds like she's losing a lung. A couple more hacks, and she pulls her hand away from her mouth a piece of -something- with some blue goo on it. "Oh…" she murmurs in a wheezing voice, "That's.. Probably not good. Kind of looks like a mushroom." A piece of delicious fungus.
The short haired assistance walks along with the doctor, "Doctor, it's not just rigor mortis. They are walking around and making noises. It's like a zombie film. You know, like Shaun of the Dead." Her name is Jane. It says so. On the nametag on her hazmat suit.

*

It's all Clint can do not to go down when he's grabbed; it's that wooziness and lightheadedness that is always categorized as 'flu-like-symptoms'. Aches, pains, difficulty in concentrating, but he's trying. He is. As a result, he's pretty easily manipulated, and finds that sitting down is now far preferable to standing up.

It's when he's got a new hearing aid in (his is home, by his bed. Who wears it to bed?) that he winces, the wooziness now manifesting a little more as pain as the contagion builds and pulses through his body. His voice is weak, but he's pushing through the fog as he looks up at his boss. He's still not really considering this to be more important than making sure Ev is brought into the fold like he'd promised, though it is slowly sinking in that perhaps this might be a little.. worse than just a run-of-the-mill flu? "What do I have?" exits before, "That's her, boss. CIA's not too happy about letting her go. She'll need a wash." New identity, files (as much as possible) wiped from the CIA's database, "I only threatened SWAT with funding, and they let me near her." Hit 'em in the pocketbook! And the rest is history- SHIELD extraction, etc.

He'd missed the whole 'bodies moving' part, but no doubt he'll hear about it soon enough. Leaning over, he sounds tired, pained as he mutters, "He's read the damned reports, Domino." About the merc getting in the way of his ops!

Wait, wait.. now.. zombies? "Zombies?" Okay, this isn't good. At all. Now, he looks more than a little concerned. "Zombie?" He's not a mutant, he's not an AI.. and.. blue eyes swing towards the good doctor. "Doc?"

*

Fury doesn't even bother to respond to Domino. She's really not worth his time. He does step back, though, as the technicians move in and convert the medbay into another quarantine zone. This will allow the three inside to remove their suits, though no one else is removing theirs.

The doctor's brows rise at the idea of zombies and the tech's description of the corpses. She keys her communicator, "Kellar, get a team down to the morgue and quarantine it. Figure out how to subdue those things without risking infection and get tissue samples. Corpses aren't supposed to be walking around."

"Doctor?" comes Kellar's confused response from the com unit.

"The morgue. It's a secondary infection area. Quarantine it, now."

"Yes, doctor."

Fury, meanwhile, stands, his arms crossed over his broad chest, staring hard at the work being done in front of him. He listens to Barton's debrief, and glances over to Evelyn as she hacks up a shiitake. "Talk to me, Doctor."

As the tech and she reach Evelyn's side, still suited up, the CMO spares the Director a glance. "We know it's a fungal infection that attacks the respiratory system first, starting like a flu, moving to hallucinations and severe vomiting. Most of the deaths we've had so far have been a combination of respiratory distress and severe dehydration." But corpses really aren't supposed to get up and walk around. "But we're still working on tracking down patient zero."

Ah, the irony.

*

Ah, yes. -The reports.- Domino's not so thrilled about all of that. She screwed up Hawkeye's ops, Hawkeye screwed up -her- ops, but guess who has the government funding and a CO to come crawling back to with a written report? Suddenly it's all become -her- fault! Does that seem fair? "You had better not made me out to be the bad guy, Barton…"

Oh, and the android's hacking up psychadelic colored mushrooms. "Glad I didn't have pizza last night," she mutters.

Then she overhears the tech.

Then she starts laughing. Laughing, then hacking for a while. Then laughing again. "Three-hundred and ninety-eight thousand four-hundred and eleven to fucking one. I'm right over here, Doc. I mean..I assume that the android doesn't count because she works a little differently and all, but I'm no cyberneticist."

Here's patient zero, infecting your medbay.

"So..what do I win?"

*

Evelyn makes a face and rubs the fungus on the gurney. Domino gets the first expression, Evelyn is sort of listening all about, gathering information, she seems to make the same conclusion as Domino. "Siberia? You think it—, you don't think those researchers met the same end, do you?"
"Siberia?" Jane echos, looking towards the doctor, now by Evelyn's side. "Yes, the corpses are moving about aimlessly. They don't seem hostile. When I left, the researchers there were already restraining them. Tasers have proven to be functional in that regard, as the motor-coordination centres of their brain appears to be functional."
It's Evelyn's wheezing turn to reply, "Yeah, there was this old bunker in Siberia that patches," that's Domino, "and I went to. It was overgrown and had a werewolf in it." Following the technician's guidance, Evelyn lays down. In general, Jane just appears to be feeling around Evelyn's body.
Nonchalantly she asks between gropes, "Do you have an access port?" Straight to the point.

*

Vomiting? Nope.. not yet. Hallucinations? No.. though there are flickers of light that are juuuust outside the periphery of his vision. Nothing, but the first bit is there. Clint sounds a touch grumpier now, however, as the weight of it all is sinking in. "Everything starts as a fucking 'flu like symptom'," is griped. "Why can't it just be the goddammed flu for once?"

Looking over to Evelyn, though he spares those glances to the doctor too, praying for a good answer from one of them, "How long?"

Morgue. There's a word.

Coughing again, it sets Clint bending over, an arm set at his midsection at the action. He's slow to sit up again, but he does, and he ends up asking the same question again, though with a little more force behind it. "How long?"

Patient Zero… and it's… Domino?

Rising from his seat with a burst of energy, Clint's hand instinctively goes to that spot where his sidearm would have been, but fingers fumble in the air. "What the hell did you do?" Insert words <to me> in there. Unspoken but most certainly there.

*

Domino starts spouting ridiculous numbers and the nearest medtech simply thinks the woman's hallucinating. Given how far gone she is… not to mention the fact she stinks of alcohol, it's really not a surprise to him. As she calls out to the CMO, however, the doctor turns her head towards her. "You're patient zero?" It doesn't sound like a question. It sounds like a statement on par with 'uh-huh, sure you are…' Because, her experience tells her, if Domino really were patient zero, she should be dead by now. Dead and, apparently, shambling around like an extra in a George Romero movie. She shakes her head but motions to the tech. "Get some bloodwork on her, anyway. We need to see how far the infection has set in on her."

Then, of course, Evelyn's wiping blue shiitake spew all over the gurney. "No, wait!" the doctor says, just a second or two too late. They've not seen mushrooms come out of people before. Only spores and gunk. That might have been valuable. Still, it's not a long reach to move from there to… "Take her for a full scan," she tells Jane. "We need to see if there are greater growths inside her." She looks at Evelyn directly, taking in her waifish appearance and the description of their adventures. 'Werewolf', she doesn't quite buy. But, she is willing to react to the girl like she would other patients. "If you're holding a different form of the infection," she tells her, "we need to look at it."

Finally, of course, it's back around to Clint. Her expression tightens. "Not long," she says. "The longest anyone has survived is three days. But, our suppressants have gotten better. We're hopeful we'll find a cure soon." It's a stock phrase, though she means it, its still a stock phrase. They really just don't know.

"You know, Thurman," Fury says, eyeing Dom through the plastic that's been erected around the trio, "if you cost me the lives of any of my agents, I'm going to be very unhappy with you…"

*

"Goddammit," Domino sighs beneath a breath as Evelyn just chimes in and starts talking about their shared excursion into the middle of nowhere on the other side of the globe. Maybe Ev is used to reporting these things to other individuals, but Dom's business is -her- business. Now Evelyn's making it everyone else's business.

"Yeah, hey, think you could talk a -little- less about date night there, Droidelyn?"

Yeah, yeah. She's in the headquarters of an organization that's focused on intelligence gathering and she's attempting to keep personal secrets. She's still got her own standards to hold to.

Clint's sudden motion for a sidearm which is no longer there earns him a blunt "Nope" from the merc. "Easy there, Barton. Being jumpy's only going to getcha floored. Look, even if I wasn't a part of that op Little Evvie would have still brought back some unwanted company with her, the stuff was all over the damn place. She just hacked up a shroom, who knows what else is using her like a mobile compost heap? Maybe I was the first one infected but it might not have come -from- me."

Case in point, now they're taking Ev in for a full scan. Here Dom motions toward the newest member to the SHIELD family, giving Clint a look that says 'see?'

And now there's Fury to deal with. She's starting to feel like a broken record whenever she's dealing with this organization, rolling her eyes and calling out in a nice, loud, and slightly gravelly voice "It -Wasn't. My. Fault.-"

All the same, the tech's reluctance to believe her story on top of her growing irritation has her reaching out for a syringe, herself. "Oh for fuck's sake, give me a needle, I'll do it myself." She's not going to die here because no one bothered to believe her! "First symptoms started from passengers on flight eleven eighty-four from Moscow, sucker bet."

*

Melinda May arrives nearly as silently as Romanoff might, already wearing a full hazmat suit with the headgear in her hands. She stops next to Director Fury, looking at the people inside the quarantine area and focusing mostly on Domino. "Any specific instructions, sir?"

*

Evelyn sits up a little bit at the mention of a full scan, "Full scan? Are you seriously suggesting it's growing inside of me?" Evelyn's intonation isn't one of disbelief or even mistrust, more confirmation of her fears. Fears like needing to be cut open to extract something that might have completely buggered up your system. That's scary, even as an artificial lifeform, because that damage doesn't heal. It has to be deliberately fixed by people who understand what needs to go into that.
Jane, with a hand on Evelyn's chest, slowly eases her back down. "It's just a harmless scan. It appears that you don't have an internal sensor suite beyond biological signals for sickness. This'll only take a bit." Looking to the doctor, Jane says, "I'll go get the equipment, we'll bring it in to avoid contaminating the — Oh."
Another assistant hands Jane what looks to be a large flourescent light, except that it isn't. It has too many wires and technological baubles to be just a light. Perhaps the cord to the large machine on a cart being rolled over is some kind of indication. "Well, we'll be right on our way, then."
Evelyn takes the chance to sit up a little bit and snap back at Domino, "Hey, if it can help them keep us alive…"
Jane pushes Evelyn back down gently, "Please hold still," she says, flicking the scanner on and running it over Evelyn's chest. The machine machines a sound like somebody punched it, and on a little screen too small for something that's supposedly so high tech, one can see all the roots and organisms that have taken up residence in the leftmost side of Evelyn's chest. Jane looks at it, fascinated, "Look at that. It's not in her cranial cavity, it's mostly just rooted here."

*

Fingers grasp nothing but air, and Clint remembers slowly that he was disarmed. Gun. Bow. Arrows. Nothing in here that he could get his hands on to throw.. and the words 'three days' does nothing to lighten his mood any. The 'but our suppressants have gotten better' means that at least he won't burst a vessel coughing out his lungs.

Slowly, he turns around and walks back to the chair and sits down heavily, his expression… thoughtful. Good thing he didn't have the gun for yet another reason. He'd rather die before he turns into a zombie and infects others.

Infects others?

"The bar.. the bar on 7th. Containing?" Looking up at his boss, Clint blinks, trying to get his vision to focus properly. Of course now that he's not moving around, the techs are free to start poking, prodding, taking blood samples.. and perhaps starting that first course in the attempt to at least treat the symptoms.

To make him more comfortable?

"Of course it's your damned fault, Domino." Grumpy Hawkeye. "You brought the damned thing—"

Wait.. mushrooms. Growing in.. "Oh.. god.." Even with a hearing aid in place, voices seem to be more buzzes than actual voices as things sound as if they're growing more distant.

In the next second, the entire world seems to explode before his eyes, and he's finding himself on the ground, whatever it was that had been in his stomach no longer there.

Two days?

*

The moment Domino starts reaching for the syringe, at least two guards are moving in to restrain her. They really aren't stupid enough to let her anywhere near a sharp implement.

"I can do it," the tech says peevishly, nevertheless, glancing to make sure the guards can handle the woman while he sticks her with the pointy end.

Fury glances down to May as she arrives at his side. "Juuust keep your eye on Thurman so Barton doesn't feel like he needs to be come a martyr," he says with a soft snirk, gesturing at the recalcitrant albino.

The doctor lets Jane do what she needs to do. But she watches that scan. Her expression tightens again, this time into a thoughtful frown. She glances at Evelyn. "Evelyn, is it?" she asks, making sure she has the name right, rather than saying 'the AI' all the time. "Evelyn, we need to get that out of you — at least a sample of it. That's going to mean surgery, unless you have some way of opening your internal mechanisms to us."

As Clint ultimately pitches forward to spew his guts out, however, her team is scrambling to contain and clean the mess, as well as move him carefully to a bed. She looks up quickly to see they're doing their job — aborting her instant reaction to join them, instead, satisfied, remaining focussed on Evelyn.

Fury stiffens almost imperceptibly beside May. "Send a containment team to that bar," he says to her simply.

*

Guards. Arms. Of course. Domino's roughly returned to her seat, promptly giving them both -such- a look of disdain. "Really, guys?" She'll just hold that glare while the sample is taken. By the tech. And not her. Oh, whatever.

If there is ever a smoking gun within the mushroom kingdom… All Domino can do is stare at the scan results from Evelyn. What she can see of it, anyway. The verbal response is more telling, honestly. Barton's response is even better, causing her to repeat that "Nope" once more.

(Not. My. Fault.)

"Damn, Ev. Gonna give that thing a name? Though you shoulda gone back to the CIA first to clear out your desk, they totally have it coming. Important thing here is that the zombie apocalypse started with you, I'm just the first victim of it."

Haaaack-coughcoughcough!

More black fluid ends up in the merc's palm. More or less. Restraint has a habit of complicating matters slightly. What can be seen of the gunk is given a look of disgust, only in part due to the smell. "Think I'm past due for an oil change. Lookin' a little dark, there. You guys got any five-double-u-thirty on tap?"

Now Clint's on the floor. "Told you, Barton." Sigh. "I woulda been out of that place in four minutes, -tops.- But noooo, Evvie just -had- to go off on her own searching for some mutated corpse then got lost and screamed and I just -had- to go back for her and quadru..quadr..increase my exposure another four hundred percent then get chased into a corner by Mister Cuddles the Happy Gremlin werewolf thing and -breathe in that shit for another twenty minutes.- Figures that having a conscience would get me killed, never saw -that- coming. Hey, can I get one of my guns back? Pretty sure it's still the only known cure for stupidity."

Then..things start to get a little hazy. Her eyes widen then blink a few times, refusing to properly focus on anything around her. Even the sounds around her grow faint and muffled for a moment before drifting back in.

"Hey. Uh. Not to alarm anyone, but can I seriously get one of my guns back now..? I've gotta have at least -one- zombie kill to my name before going."

*

Melinda May nods to Fury and turns away to tap at an earpiece and send out the order to get that place Barton mentioned under quarantine as well. This is becoming an actual problem now.

*

Jane keeps scanning over Evelyn's body, easily picking out the organic material from the inorganic. "Do you eat?" She asks Evelyn, an honest question to an android, it's possible she doesn't.
"I do," Evelyn says back, looking to Domino, "Look, fuck you, patches. I wasn't the one who went in with _zero_ gear, if I weren't there, you would have bitten it _twice_. Not only that, but I _also_ risked my ass just to help you get whatever the hell you were looking at." She huffs, annoyed.
Sighing, she looks over to the doctor, "You have to cut me open. To repair me after doing that, you need to get the parts from my apartment." They were going to get them, but there was no choice. The separation was too soon, and then the CIA _and_ the zombie outbreak. "Mr.. Uh.."
Evelyn pauses a bit, watching Fury, "I.. Don't know who you are. But the CIA is going to go there, if they aren't already. They're gonna keep looking for me." She leans up again, only to be eased back down. Third time.
Janes peers at Evelyn, hard. Then she looks to the doctor, "Do we have any staff capable of doing that? I'm not sure what we need. We need to get it out of it. .. Her.. We need a cure if we're going to get agent Barton back as soon as possible." Coming from a specialist in mechatronics, that's pretty frightening.

*

Clint's in the bed now, and while it's not truly built for comfort, it's something near that to the agent. He rests his arm across his forehead to feel the prickly heat, and his eyes close. He can't sleep, he won't sleep. Not if he's only got, tops, a couple of days.

When he catches word of a potential apartment run, his arm slides from the spot, and he struggles to sit up. "I can go there.. it'd be.."

No, no he can't. He's a carrier for goddammed zombie spore.

Resting upon his elbows, Clint is feeling that 'flu-like symptom' in the form of achy joints, and he falls back heavily.

"Sir, if you don't find something soon, please, just kill me." There. It's said. "Don't let Domino do it. She'd enjoy it too much."

*

"Relax, Barton," Fury replies simply to the stricken agent. "We got this." He'll give it another 24 hours, anyway, before he starts thinking about euthanasia.

Nevertheless, the Director sends a message to a crew of his best to clean out Evelyn's apartment — to yank it right out from under the CIA, if they have to, and bring back everything they need, any personal effects, whatever looks useful. He also issues orders to R&D to make sure they lift the full specs for the AI from wherever those specs are hidden. Because they're S.H.I.E.L.D. And while he may not know exactly how they'll use the android in the future, he'll concede it's not something he wants left in the other agency's hands.

Thus it is that, about an hour later, May is the one out there, dealing implacably with the CIA mooks while the CMO and technologist, here, work on extracting the growth from the android's chest.

An hour after that, the apartment is empty, the fungus is being examined, alongside Domino's blood, while someone else worries about repairing the android.

An hour after that, the CMO is moving quickly. "I think this will do it," she says, looking up from computer simulation and comparing it with a microscope culture. "I think we've got it." She looks at one of her techs. "Move. Let's get this thing into production. I hate using human trials as guinea pigs, but…" They've run out of options.

*

"-Zero Ge- -I can't very well lug a full facemask and filter around to every op, okay?!" Domino counters to Evelyn. "Bulk, weight, and it takes up valuable space reserved for weapons! Didn't need your help, didn't -ask- for your help, could have just as easily left you alone to freeze your ass off out there."

(Yeah, no I couldn't have. Shut up.)

"Who the hell was out there that was so important, anyway? Are they helping spread armageddon one cough at a time somewhere else in the world? Shoulda torched the whole damn place from the st..stah..oh. Hhhelll. Fuck..my life."

The strength leaves her words first. Seconds later, any form of physical restraint is no longer necessary. Everyone's willpower gives in sooner or later. Now's the time where hers caves in beneath the growing pressure. The lights go out, leaving one sickly looking woman completely limp with blackened veins visible like a roadmap beneath skin which resembles a sheet of lichen-dashed paper.

Apparently it -is- possible to get her to shut up eventually. The next three-odd hours should be a little more peaceful for everyone else.

*

Evelyn bolts upright when Domino falls over, half wanting to kick her face in, half wanting to help her. God, what an infuriating woman! But Jane forces Evelyn back down in a way that she can understand, with a bit of force and also reminding her there's no time for this. No time for petty arguments given the situation, and as she said in her own words, the procedure was required.
So sure enough, Eve is carted off and somehow, they contact the researchers from her origin lab to get enough help to take her apart and extract the fungal growth. It was quite large, and by the time of extraction, almost looked like seaweed. For the procedure, Evelyn needed to be completely deactivated, which meant shutting off all of her power sources. As always, there's the chance she wouldn't wake up, but one life for a city is a hard decision for anyone to make.
A cure is easy to synthesize with the plant extracted, and soon Evelyn is sanitized and buttoned back up. With the the help of a jumpstart at the tune of 40,000 volts or so, Evelyn's reacted is restarted and she's kitted out in one of those BAD-ASS hospital gowns. She doesn't wake up immediately, instead chilling in a medical room until she regains consciousness. Nothing left to do there but wait.

*

With the three effectively out cold, there's not a lot more Fury can do. But, the CMO? She and her team issue antidotes to both Domino and Clint. The former… doesn't seem to fare too well. The latter, however, finds his breathing starts to ease after only about a half hour, though he sleeps through that easing. A day or two from now, he'll probably be back on his feet.

Of course, the 50% success rate is a little less than they'd hoped. But there are others, near death, who, really, can't be hurt by trying. Funny, really, how they all more-or-less recover over the next two or three days, too. It's only Domino who seems to continue to go south.

Guess that's what you get for being a smartass patient zero.

*

Melinda May returns in time watch the CMO and her team working on Barton and Thurman. she asides to Fury, "Apartment's cleared. Pretty sure the CIA is going to have words."

*

It's one of those things… They still gave Domino the initial cure, even though it didn't look all that promising. Things only went from bad to worse, leaving the woman in the morgue soon after.

The morgue doesn't have the same level of security as the rest of the building…

The silence is deafening. The air is frigid. Then, without any hint of warning, the light overhead is -blinding- as blood-shot pale blue eyes snap wide open.


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