Where Does Responsibility Lie

Summary:
July 4, 2014: After a meeting with SHIELD, Sara and Paul discuss the future.

A car driving through the streets of Manhattan


Characters

NPCs


Mood Music:


Paul's mostly quiet as they leave the Triskelion. Outside, he stops at the cart and gets a couple of soft pretzels for them. Hungry SHIELD agents make it a good location for food carts and trucks. Once they're int he car and driving away, he asks "Are you sure you want to join them?"

Sara is pretty good at eating and driving, especially since she and Paul teamed up. She's lucky she hasn't put on thirty pounds with all the snack stops. "More and more," she admits, though she takes a moment to think it through before she answers. "I mean, NYPD will always be home in its own way. But there? I don't know. Maybe I go in on the ground floor and I find out that it's just as full of dirty agents, lazy slobs, and clueless assholes as any other place. But at least I don't feel like I'm the only one working, or like everyone's just waiting for a chance to stare at my ass."

"We're the first line of defense." Paul says thoughtfully, in between bites. "SHIELD can't do what we do. They have no jurisdiction in the city without special circumstances. They can't investigate the kidnappings or the clinic. Especially if the force is full of dirty cops, lazy slobs and clueless asshole, we're needed on the streets. We can still work with them like we are but if we join up, there's no more of this." He uses his pretzel to gesture at the street and traffic around them. "Who'll help those kidnapped mutants if we're not? Who'd have bothered to even look into it with everyone's case load?"

"We can't do everything, Paul. Especially on the department budget," Sara grimaces, taking another bite of her pretzel. "We're just two people. I get what you're saying. I don't entirely disagree. I just…" She lifts her hand, shaking her wrist. "That still doesn't solve this problem, and I'm one overzealous IA officer away from getting kicked off, anyhow."

"And I'm not?" Paul shrugs lightly and looks back out the windshield "It feels like we'd be abandoning them. Who else can do what you can do and actually does it down here where it's real? If you weren't here, how many more kids would have butchered their parents? How many more soulless shells would be running around waiting to be filled up with whatever that was? Maybe the NYPD isn't a good fit but…" He shrugs again. "We make a difference here."

"Maybe there's…a middle ground," Sara allows, words slow and carefully chosen. "I mean, we could be liaison officers or something. Sounds stupid, yeah. Not like either of us are known for our interpersonal skills. But it might give us a little more leeway in what we work with, keep us from having to go behind people's backs, and give us a chance to hit more of these things with a little more firepower."

"Maybe." Paul agrees. "I don't know how we'd go about it but it sounds like a decent solution. Whether the brass would go for it… Maybe SHIELD would need to set it in motion. I don't know." he repeats. "But we should try, don't you think?"

"Can't hurt, right?" Sara shrugs slightly, pausing to shout at a driver who cuts them off. "I mean, what's the worst case scenario? They fire us, and we just get the job with SHIELD anyhow."

"True enough." Paul agrees. "Though more likely they'd ask us to resign. Or transfer us to traffic which amounts to the same thing. I'm not sure I'd want Fury as a boss too."

"Then we could start our own Heroes for Hire agency. Manning and Pezzini, PIs," Sara smirks, shaking her head. "They'd be lined up around the block with pro bono case requests. We could live on a diet of ramen and public water fountains. It'd be awesome."

"I'd starve to death." Paul points out. "The rest of it doesn't sound half bad. Except that the police would probably arrest us every time we did what was necessary. At least working for them we have some protection."

"Yeah, but then we could get let out by fancy SHIELD lawyers," Sara points out. "And we could give them the same treatment we do when we go out to do our jobs on a regular basis."

"Well, let's see what happens." Paul suggests. "The captain's been letting us do our thing mostly. I think he really doesn't want to know what's out there on the streets. Then he'd have to take his job seriously. Meanwhile, we'll look into the clinic and kidnappings. Course, once I'm dead you can do whatever you want. But you should still stay on the force."

"You're not going to be dead," Sara rolls her eyes. "For more than a few minutes. Trust me, it never takes. We could start cutting you and I could practice getting this thing to some healing," she offers helpfully, smile flashing. Because that's not frightening at all.

"It might not take when you wear a bracelet with tentacles but I don't." Paul points out and he does glances over at the artifact under discussion. "It heals too? More than you, I mean. You mentioned once it does."

Sara's smile fades at the question, and she's quiet for a long moment before she answers. "It's brought me back a few times," she finally says. "But the first time I actually used it was trying to bring back Yee. And I did. Sort of. But it wasn't…" She trails off, rubbing a hand at the back of her neck. "Souls matter," she concludes.

"Okay, sure." Paul will believe it once he's back from the dead. Things have moved on to where he has no idea what she's talking about. "Well, practice all you want if it doesn't involve fire."

"Next time you get shot," Sara promises. "We'll give it a try before emergency services shows up. You can be like my CPR dummy." She grins, then shakes her head. "Though I was meaning to work on that whole flying thing, too. Sort of complicated, though. Where exactly do you go to practice flying your creepy magical suit?" A pause. "Stark tower, I guess."

"I know a couple abandoned warehouses." Paul suggests. "I practice there regularly. You can start low so you don't break your neck and go up a floor each time."

"I kind of feel like it's going to take some height, either way," Sara muses. "They're more like gliding wings. Anyhow, we'll give it a try. Let's go find out what we can about that clinic. We'll worry about the rest of it later."


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