Back with the Bus

Summary:
September 02, 2014: Hawkeye catches up with Hill. A new tech apprentice gets caught up in the resulting snarkstorm. (Some language. Takes place right after Persons of Interest.)

The Triskelion

SHIELD's headquarters based in New York City.


Characters

NPCs

  • Random SHIELD Agent 3139

Mood Music:
None


Amy knew she'd have a rough time going to her parents to say she wanted to go part time at Columbia. She doens't need money, so there aren't many jobs she could tell them she wanted to take, that would have convinced them not to say "Stay in school or lose the trust fund." But when she mentioned she was interviewing to become a technician with a shadowy government agency, well, they decided it was alright. And well now here it is, her first day showing up to the building to begin doing actual stuff. She comes to the secure building, flashing whatever badge or advanced remote scanning ID needed to get in, along with whatever fancy biometrics are done on her, and she arrives.

*

The Division isn't wholly shadowy, unless anything sanctioned by the UN happens to be viewed under such light (and probably with good reason.) SHIELD's public image is important, but it's no secret that they're very well outfitted. Very, very well outfitted. But, it's all in the name of global security! Keeping the peace, protecting the people, yadda yadda.

Once past the front lobby and into more secure territory the new technician's in for a small sample of the sorts of things which tend to happen around here. In this case it's the Deputy Director stepping into the hall, looking utterly beat with a gas mask hanging from one hand and an unchambered submachine gun in her other. Short black hair is in a peculiar state of disarray and she carries with her the reek of carbon and a chemical fire.

Someone's having a rough day.

One of the first agents to walk past her suddenly finds the gear intercepting his path so abruptly that he walks into it, hands reflexively going up to catch the two items with widened eyes.

"Quartermaster. Go," Hill flatly instructs the man whom quickly ducks his head and mentally reworks his schedule to accomodate the next newest task. With that out of the way she slumps back against the wall and takes a slow breath, staring ceiling-ward before her attention returns to the rest of the hall. It's here that she notices the shorter woman. ..In pigtails? "Welcome home, newbie." Because she's obviously been assigned to work here, and she's very clearly new.

*

Hawkeye doesn't look like much, he really doesn't. Regular Joe who doesn't dress in suit and tie like most of the employees in SHIELD. If anything, when he enters wearing a blue t-shirt, jeans, boots and a pair of sunglasses, most in the lobby look at him for a moment before they look away. Some, possibly recognizing the Field Agent, possibly not and thinking of grand stories of how he'll be tossed out on his butt in the next moment after being denied at reception.

SHIELD is a place of biometrics; retinal scans, finger prints, signing in triplicate the release for the adoption of a first born son, the whole nine yards. So how, exactly, does the untidy-ish looking man manage to not only not stop at the desk, but gain a smile from the receptionist, with a "Hawkeye," in greeting?

The greeting stops him in his tracks, most literally as a leg comes up as if he'll take the next step but doesn't. "Oh, hey…" and he nods in Amy's direction before he asks, "Deputy Director Hill- oooh, that doesn't look good."

*

Amy doesn't really know who any body is. She's not even sure she's been particularly assigned to anything yet. She just knows she's gotten past whatever array of background checks that were done in addition to checking her aptitude, knowledge, skills, and whatever else they wanted to know. When Hill addresses her, she turns and takes a few steps over. She looks a bit warily at the obviously tired person, but responds with a nervous laugh. "Hi, and thanks." She gives a little wave to Hawkeye as well, when the conversation is joined.

*

Just in case Hill's day isn't testing her patience enough already, heeeere's Hawkeye. "Well look who finally decided to show up for work." Pulling herself away from the wall gives her enough time to recharge her thoughts and recalibrate her speech from 'snark' to 'grill.' Though as long as 'newbie' is here she also offers a "Come see how we get things done around here" before zeroing in on Barton.

"So nice of you kids to pile into a highly classified multi-million dollar jet and go galavanting off to God knows where without so much as a 'thanks for the keys' or a forward address. Just -imagine- my surprise when I wake up one morning and discover that most of my star players have gone on an unscheduled field trip. Do you people have any idea what's been happening around here since you all decided to claim some vacation time? I just had a public shootout with a mercenary that heals himself like a damm ball of modeling clay and nearly got pancaked by a bloody Asgardian that hasn't yet begun to comprehend the cryptic message of the rare and elusive New York walk signal! Now can I -please- assume that the rest of your pals are back in service around here or should I go ahead and write off another week because they've decided to hijack my jet for another trip out to the damn Bahamas?"

Aaaand -scene.-

*

Did Barton just try and turn around to walk out the door again? No, he couldn't have. It wouldn't even have crossed his mind.

Damn right it would have!

Amy's wave earns the girl at least one star in terms of courage; after all, he isn't looking his best right now. "I'd…" Run? Look for a desk to hide under? "Never mind."

Straightening in the face of the onslaught, Hawk waits for the inevitable rant/vent-fest as Hill finds a likely suspect upon whom to target. He can take it. He's a big boy, which is probably half the reason she chooses him. (Well, and the other half of the time he may or may not actually deserve it.)

"Did you ever get back to Superman about the guy he couldn't beat yet?" Probably uncalled for, but he couldn't resist. Particularly in the lobby. Now doesn't that get peoples' attention?

"We're uh…" Now, Barton takes to finding a particularly annoying itch on the back of his neck to scratch, "…not quite 'back', back. I think we're headed out again." But! "But! We almost got it and I did receive a really nice 'thank you' skype from someone while over there." Family of the doctor. (She was married. Kids. Dammit.)

*

Amy has no idea what's going on here. About any of this. So she backs away a little, making sure not to get between these two. She folds her hands behind her back, just being very quiet, watching, listening, but not saying a single thing here. Nope, nope, not one word.

*

"And when would I have had the time to do that!" Hill demands while darting her hands out to either side. There's fresh black smudges all over her normally pristine white gloves. "I'm too busy playing nanny for the entire freaking UN!"

And they're not..even..back yet…

Here..it's where Maria begins to smirk. It's a coy, Devilish expression. "Is that so? Come, let's take a little walk." Glancing to Amy, she adds "All of us." She may as well get the new girl acclimated to her new home, as it happens to be.

First, she explains "Hawkeye here is one of our very best marksmen. A very decorated field agent, and generally..quite dependable," she slowly adds with a cold sidelong glance passed Hawk's way. "And here," she continues while motioning toward Amy, "we have ..what's your name?" Looks like a tech of some manner more than a field agent, anyway. "If she's lucky we'll find some time for the nickel tour. Where did your pals park the Bus, Barton?" Because that's the direction she's going to start leading them toward.

"It's a good thing you all stopped by for snacks and fuel, Barton. It seems as though I just might be overstaying my welcome around here lately. Now before you get your hopes up about me getting reassigned back to a Helicarrier," she promptly cuts in, "perhaps you can do me a solid and make sure that there's a bunk open onboard for your new field leader."

Three guesses who -that- is!

*

This isn't good. Not by any definition of the word. Amy? There is no hiding from the Deputy Director no matter how small you make yourself. Welcome to SHIELD. It's an ocean where one either sinks or swims. There are the few that fly above the waves, but that takes -years-.

Hawkeye himself has a raft with a six-pack and a styrofoam container of BBQ.

As they're gathered, or more herded, Clint finds himself wanting to check the ropes on that raft because he knows there are sharks in the water. "Well, snacks, fuel and a few more tips." That just makes it so much better. "I think R&D has something I put a req in for a few months ago?"

Barton stops in his path, even if Hill and Amy continue a pace or two. "You're going into the field?" Does he sound the least bit worried? "I thought…" Uh.

Now, however, Barton's expression loses any concern or indecisiveness; it's his professional face. And this is actually an honest question. Years past, he could always rely on Hill to back him up. Now? Is it going to be someone he doesn't know and is therefore untested? "Who's going to be on the other end of the radio then?"

*

Amy nods quickly. She's gathering that this person is pretty much in charge, or close to it. So she follows along. "Um, Amy Kingsley," she answers. "I think I'm supposed to be starting in R&D," she offers, "but I'm not… sure." Then another nervous laugh as she follows along, still do ing more listening than talking. Much more listening than talking. Her head is up, and she's definitely looking around, trying to get a feel for this, looking at everything, while trying to glean waht she can from the conversation in front of her.

*

"I wouldn't worry about that," Hill replies to Clint's inquiry about the radio. "After all, the entire time you've all been out in the big wide world with my jet not a single one of you has touched the sqawk box even -once,-" she says complete with holding a finger upright for emphasis. "Which is probably part of why I'm now being handed different marching orders, by the way. See, we have a slight problem when so many of our best all pile together without a commanding officer being kept in the loop. If the Bus would have been compromised then so would have every last one of you. Consider this eliminating the proverbial middle-man. We have a lot invested in all of you, your gear, and your transportation. We are -going- to know where everything is and what everything is doing. Always. You knew that much when we pulled your ass into the Division, and you know as well as most of us do what happens when we don't keep tabs on everything."

Intel gets stolen and submarines start flying away from the Manhattan harbor.

Here, too, a few extra pieces of the massive global puzzle are assembled. Barton mentions additions to the Bus. Amy mentions being assigned to R&D. What a happy little coincidence this is. "Then let's get you started in style, Kingsley. Your first order of business will be to assist the rest of the tech-heads already digging into the Bus. I'm sure they'll appreciate the extra hands as they're working on a tight schedule." Apparently. "They'll find somewhere else for you afterward."

*

"You know we all would have been able to scramble," Hawkeye defends. "We've run to ground before and I can't begin to imagine that we won't do it again at some point in the future." They are that good. Top agents in an international agency means they don't leave anything to chance. Well, mostly.

'When they pulled his ass into the Division'.

Sigh.

"You know, some pretty amazing things happen when you're not looking." Barton won't go into them, however. Instead, he looks over toward Amy, and his brows rise, his tones sounding friendly.

"Oh hey, really? You'll be working with Matt then, I guess. He's the one that sizes some of the electronics down to fit in an arrow tip. He could probably use some help there."

*

Amy smiles a little and nods at each of them. "Great. I'm glad there's something I can do then You know like, I'd much rather get started doing stuff than like um, having to do orientation videos and training and all that stuff. I'm dropping to part time school because I thought this would be more, you know, meaningful. But um.." She then pauses and bites her lip. "Like um, what's the bus?"

*

"Look Barton, I'm not trying to discredit any of you here," Hill offers with what just might be a sliver of sympathy for a change. "Point is that we're dealing with some very ugly nasty things lately, and you know that we don't like to leave -anything- to chance. I know this may be difficult for you but try to see it as less of a punishment and more as a helping hand." Because if punishment happened to be in order she'd permanently ground the bird and reassign every last one of them to something mind numbingly dull.

As for Amy's question, it's one which is easily answered. A bit of walking, a couple of doors, and suddenly: Hangar. It's big. Huge! And the massive matte black jet parked inside of it doesn't make anything seem any less gigantic, what with its six engined arrangement and all. Hill motions onward, almost with a sense of pride about her. "The Bus. For those 'very' special long-distance operations. And yes, you can put some of your time toward arrowhead development if that's what you fancy," she adds.

*

"You're still gonna have to do that," Barton sympathizes. "Like, when a new harassment policy comes into effect? We all have to watch it. I swear, if I heard 'Yellow light, Barton' one more time…" He's joking, of course. Mostly.

The trio take the walk out of the building and onto the airstrip and hanger where The Bus is housed for the time being. "That is The Bus." And he has stuff stored there on a semi-permanant basis. As they walk, it's the defrosting of Hill that always seems to catch him off-guard. From 'tough nut' to 'Field Agent shooting the shit', and he -likes- that. "I get it. I do. Hell, if that was what you were gonna do, my ass would still be in Kurdish Turkey eating goat eyes." He even smirks, that ghost of a smile rising when a 'thought' strikes him as amusing. "We got this, Hill. With you on board? God help the bad guys." Because honestly, he knows that she's damned good- she wouldn't be where she is if she wasn't. It's all by -merit- in this place.

*

Amy laughs nervously at the comments from Barton, but she's abruptly interrupted by seeing this large, black jet. I mean, sure you see these kinds of big planes on TV, or on a cross country nonstop flight, but seeing it on a screen or from a terminal isn't the same thing as actually being right there on the ground next to one. "Wow," she gasps, staring up at it. "Making really tiny things for arrows sounds neat but working on this too… wow." she says slowly, softly.

*

"Around here we understand the importance of time," Hill explains to Amy. "Where everyone else has daily meetings to check on how productive everyone is doing we leave the people to actually get the work done. If regular progress had been a concern then you wouldn't have made it this far." Pause. "But yes, there is the occasional video. We've tried to make them a little more engaging by adding catchy soundtracks to them. There's been a twenty-one percent increase in audience awareness up to the age of thirty since then."

She might be making all of this up.

Glancing back to Barton, Hill actually smirks in return. "Gotta keep 'em on their toes. Kingsley, you're over there with the ground crew," she points out to a small cluster of individuals working on the Bus. To Barton, she says "Let's get everything in order for the next flight out."


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