Synthetic Humans and High Tech Handknits

Summary:
December 5, 2014: Per a request from Howard Stark, Agent May takes Simmons to meet the inventor in his new lab in Stark Tower. They happen across Mike Drakos on the way so he tags along out of curiosity. Fenris 'drops' in later.

Howard Stark's lab, Stark Tower


Characters

NPCs

  • JARVIS

Mood Music:
none


Howard's figured out modern technology pretty quickly. It's odd to send messages instead of picking up the phone, but he's quickly learning that the former is more acceptable these days. He doesn't have the direct email of either May or Simmons, but he does have a contact at SHIELD. He sends one asking for where he could deliver a gift to each of them. That message was then sent to each of the women.

When he mentioned the gifts contained certain…experimental technolgy, the suggestion was made, (gently) that perhaps they would be better off picking up the gifts in person than risk setting something off at SHIELD security.

Pepper was kind enough to set Howard up with an apartment, but to be honest, he's hardly stepped foot in it. He doesn't need a lot of rest. What he needs is to keep his hands busy. He's hard at work on a creation that superficially resembles the one he was working on over at the Triskelion.

~

When May and Simmons arrive at the Tower, Pepper is there in the lobby chatting with Mike Drakos, probably about their holiday weekends. Becca from the security desk steps forward to greet the two women and offer them visitor's badges. Clearly their arrival had been expected. Just as the two pairs are about to converge, Pepper's phone rings and she answers it quickly with an apologetic glance to Mike and the others. She listens to the person on the other end of the line for a moment, then looks at Mike again. "Sorry, I have to go deal with this. You'll call me if anything, right?" And then she's gone, briskly walking to and disappearing into an elevator.

May watches all of this impassively enough, her 'civilian' attire of plain jeans and shirt with tall boots and a leather jacket almost but not quite allowing her to blend in with the rest of the people in the lobby. Though really, she's downright mundane compared to the man with the electric blue hair.

~

"Sure sure," Mike replies to Pepper. He's the guy with the electric blue hair, though it's mostly the tips at the moment, with the rest of it being dark blue. It's kind of like he bleached it lighter for the summer? Anyway, he looks over as May and Simmons arrive.

"Miss May? Miss Simmons? Hope you're doing well today," he says in greeting. He doesn't know why they're here, but it looks like things might get fun.

~

Simmons walks with May, knowing well enough to not attempt to talk her ear off with scientific chatter like she normally would with Fitz. However, Jemma has done even more research on Howard Stark since the last time they met and so it is with quite a bit of excitement that she follows in the terse Agent's wake. Her hands fidget in front of her as she attempts to figure out what it is that he may have for her, trying to keep a cool head about it. For all she knows it could be something mundane. But, then, something so mundane it would set off the Triskelion's security?

"What do you think they are?" Simmons finally asks May, unable to contain herself. "Something incredibly scientific, I'll bet. I'll have to keep it away from Fitz or he'll attempt to dismantle it to figure out how it works. You know how he gets around new tech. Either that or he'll be sullenly jealous. I wish he'd just finally meet Mr. Stark and be done with it, but he's always talking about how busy he is." At the greeting from Mike, she bobs her head cordially, stopping her nervous chatter with a proper, "Hello!" The excitement in her voice is hard to hide.

~

When the visitors are ready, the elevator will take them to the floor where Pepper has set Howard up. The lab is not quite a mirror image (it's not the penthouse, for one) but it does have enough similarities to twig with anyone who has ever visited Tony's inner sanctum. There's lots of practical reasons for that, but it's also an interesting study in both similarities and contrasts.

Melinda May has actually never been in Stark Tower before (that was someone else's job), so is subtly observing everything as they walk. She's not aware of JARVIS as of yet, as the AI has been a somewhat well kept secret inside the company and Tony's and Pepper's circles of friends. "I'm sure we'll find out," is May's only reply to Simmons just before they approach Drakos, and then the extent of her greeting to the blue-haired man — unusual hair color choice there — is a single nod.

~

Elevator goes up? Mike gets a quiet near-field message from Jarvis. So very weird, that. He pretends to look at something on a wristwatch display, and quietly directs the group toward the opening elevator.

"I think we're supposed to go this way. So Pepper was saying she wanted me to meet someone. Sterk, I think she said," Mike says. He can't get anything else out of Jarvis. Apparently, whether or not Mike can tell what's going on is as interesting as whether or not Howard can tell. Who's got the bets going? Probably Jarvis, Tony, and reluctantly Pepper.

Maybe reluctantly. Mike kind of played this trick on her earlier, when they went for her bodyguard in Cuba, so she might be willing to bet now.

~

Jemma also has never been to the Stark Tower before. While Fitz has talked about the pros and cons of the Stark Industry designs far more times than she'd care to admit to, she has never actually been this far inside. As they enter the elevator and it ascends toward, she nods at May. That seems to be a clear thing, at least.

At Mike's observation, Simmons simply raises an eyebrow. "Yes, something very much like Sterk, actually," she nods, not giving anything away with her tone of voice. She smiles and then looks over at May to elaborate - she's not sure what exactly she can say about the matter.

~

The elevator opens to reveal the lab. JARVIS gave Howard advance notice, so he's already stepped away from his project. He's pulling off a pair of gloves when the doors slide open to admit his guests. He smiles. "Ms. May, Doctor Simmons." Mike gets a nod, but he doesn't recognize him. Muscle, perhaps? Or rather…extra muscle, considering The Cavalry is in attendance. Understandable, really. Not everyone is confident he's precisely…stable. "Good to see you both. I wasn't expecting a personal visit."

"Steck," May corrects them both. She's always hated elevators though she understands that they're necessary evils in this day and age, and just as she's almost convinced herself that that feeling of being watched is NOT paranoia, their elevator comes to a stop to let them off at Stark's new workshop. Stepping into the workshop she looks around once before nodding to Howard. "You said you had something."

~

Mike looks at the lab, and at Howard, and deliberately locks his facial expression into neutral. Steck. Right. The man looks exactly like the picture of Tony's father that hangs partly-obscured at a 42 degree angle behind the centrifuge in Tony's lab, not to mention, is all over the Stark Enterprises websites.

Jarvis? I'm going to just stand here out of the way and watch for a few moments, unless you had something else you wanted me to do? Mike says to the AI via the same near-field encrypted-packet communication that Jarvis used to talk with him earlier.

Then he starts looking at the mass of machines and technology and … does that construct have actual calcium bones? It's hard to tell, so much tech obscuring the structure. Might have to resort to active scans. But let's try passive for a bit longer.

The blue-haired guy in the black leatherish outfit stands to the side, out of the way, almost as if he WERE just a bodyguard for Simmons.

~

"Well, you did mention that it was better to pick them up in person and I'm always interested to look through someone else's lab - if you don't mind." Simmons moves forward, unaware of the implications that she needs a bodyguard - let alone two. That's never been the case before and she's blissfully ignorant of it now. Already she's looking throughout the lab and the project Howard left to greet them.

With a grin, Simmons greets Howard with an offered handshake. "Hi Mr…" she glances over at May and then adds, "Steck." It's a slight pause, but a pause nonetheless. She gives a look of somewhat apology at calling him Steck as opposed to Stark, unsure if he knows about the change to his name yet.

~

Howard wrinkles his nose at the name. He shakes Simmons' hand anyway and motions for her to take a look at the device on the table. It's a sleeker, trimmer, more compact version of a device he was working on at the Triskelion. The schematics projected on the display tell more of the story. It appears to be a chamber for nanobot regeneration, repair and alteration. In short, it's the 2.0 version of the technology from the LMD lab where they found him.

He steps over to a workbench and picks up a long dark green box with a gold ribbon. He hands it over to May. "Just a little token. A thank-you for your help. I have one for you too, Doctor Simmons. But feel free to poke at the project first." He keeps half an eye on Mike. He's the master of the curious look. If he's suspicious, he doesn't let it show.

~

Melinda May accepts the box and looks at the wrapping. Yes, she's one of those. Is the ribbon hand-tied, or is it the sort of wrapping done at a high end department store? "Thank you." She steps out of Simmons' way so the scientist can geek out to her heart's content, and starts to rather carefully unwrap the box.

~

Mike tilts his head slightly as the boxes are handed out, but he doesn't say anything about the weapon in May's box, nor the whatever that thing is in Jemma's box. He does give a momentary but very intense glance to the nanobot-hive, and allows a faint, faint Mona-Lisa smile to show. He begins forming a scanner-moth in his left hand, out of view, one that can scan accurately at very very small sizes, because it's hard to focus on the tech at that size without getting too friendly with it, and Howard "Steck" might notice if Mike started mech-whispering to his bodyparts.

Also that would just be creepy and stalkery.

~

It's clear that Jemma isn't quite sure what to make of the name change. She's not one for improv, so she'll just attempt to not use his name at all in the following conversation just in case. "Ooo." While Simmons isn't exactly the most up to date on engineering, she certainly understands the concept behind what is happening here. "You've already upgraded them." Despite only getting a cursory look about the lab where they found Howard, she certainly recognizes built upon technology. While she was practically bubbling about the idea of a gift before, the science wins over - as it always will for her.

With practiced hands, she gestures through the display to zoom in and focus on what is interesting to her. "Have you gotten around the problem of enhanced regeneration? From what I've been studying, it becomes wildly inaccurate and at times triggers cancerous growth. Or a strange piece of skin hanging off where it shouldn't." She grins, utterly engrossed with the schematics in front of her.

~

The ribbon is hand-tied, but that's because the gift itself is homemade. Usually Howard's a high-end department store sort of guy. It is rather straight, though. When May unwraps it, it reveals a box. Inside the box is neatly folded tissue paper. When the tissue paper is pulled aside, it reveals a silver knitted scarf. The pattern of the knit and the metallic yarn gives the impression of chainmail. When it's picked up, it has more weight than a simple knitted scarf should. On closer inspection, the silver colour of the yarn hides the wires that are woven through it. There is also a button on each end of the scarf.

He grins sidelong to Simmons. He does love anyone who knows enough to be properly impressed by his brilliance. "Regular stabilization and reset is the key. That way, I correct any drift before it becomes an issue. Working on a portable device or a specifically-built nanobot that would perform the stabilization. I hesitate to add any new players into my ecosystem, though."

There's certainly lots of tech and schematics to explore in the room. Though, none of it is as sophisticated as Howard himself. If he's aware of any espionage, he's giving it a pass. Besides, he has presents to give out.

~

Stark Tower. The workshop very recently refurnished to accomodate Howard. May is in the process of carefully pulling a metallic silvery-colored scarf out of a just-unwrapped box. "You knit this yourself?" she asks of Howard, just to get him to admit openly that yes, he knows how to knit.

~

Mike starts playing music to himself, broadcasting it quietly on the FM band in an unused frequency. I can't believe it, the way you look sometimes/Like a trampled flag on a city street, oh yeah/And I don't want it, the things you're offering me/Symbolized bar code, quick ID, oh yeah
Cause I'm a 21st century digital boy/I don't know how to live but I've got a lot of toys/My daddy's a lazy middle class intellectual/My mommy's on valium, so ineffectual
Ain't life a mystery?

It's not really true. Mommy's a priest and quite effectual, Daddy's neither lazy nor 'middle class' intellectual - he's a freaking theologian. But hey. A proper choice of parents means that when you grow up to be a robot, they don't freak out and call the Humanity First psychopaths.

The moth … about the size of a thumbnail … spirals out from behind Mike and flitters quietly towards the nanobot hive. Mike wants a closer look, but he also wants to continue pretending to be The Bodyguard. Also to see if Howard hears radio.

~

A way opens near May and, as may might have come to expect, a man steps through lean and predatory and looking rather curious. "Aaaaah. It's the anderiod with a soul. I was wondering why I felt such odd things at the heart of the domain of the Lord of Iron. Hello Mister Stark." Fenris chuckles and gives the LMD a polite bow. "Agent May and… I don't believe we've met…" He says to Mike.

~

As Simmons flips through the schematics and studies the actual work on the table, she eagerly takes in the leaps on science that she can easily recognize here. "This is remarkable, Mr. St—-" And then Fenris steps through the portal and she frowns. While she was just about to break her own promise to not use his name, at least now she is able to be annoyed at someone else for doing the same thing. Her eyes drift toward May and her chainlink scarf - eyebrows rise at that present - and then to Mike to see how he takes the mention of the name.

~

See, this is why him being 'Howard Steck' will never work. He's undeniably a Stark, through and through. Dancing around it just feels like it's insulting everyone. He nods at May's question and smiles one of his bright, showman's smiles. "You gave me a challenge. I accepted. Besides, it let me rediscover my nimble fingers." Somehow he manages to say that without sounding as lewd as it could have.

He uses the distraction of Fenris' arrival to sneak a box around his back. He sidles up next to Simmons and taps her on the shoulder with a red and white polka dot box with a white ribbon.

"Hello Mr. Frenchman who is not a Frenchman and is actually someone who lives a long time and jumps through portals." If it isn't obvious, he's speaking to Fenris. "I don't imagine Tony is all too fond of you popping in here, such as you did." He keeps glancing over at Mike out of the corner of his eye. He can't detect the scan. He's not /that/ kind of android. But his systems are extremely well-shielded. It takes deep scans to even reveal the nanobots. Deeper scans than that throw up garbled readings interspersed with tossed out bio-readings of a human being.

~

Melinda May quirks an eyebrow then nods her thanks to Howard before wrapping the scarf around her neck just so. It doesn't even begin to look like it could be used as a weapon. Maybe she can ask Howard to knit a neck tie for Coulson next. And then Fenris 'steps' into the room and she gives him an unimpressed look. "You're unsettling the locals," is all she has to say to the tall man about his unorthodox entrance.

~

Mike gives Jericho Wolfson a searching look as he moves to a position closer to Simmons.

Right. He hasn't seen me with skin on. Even though I look exactly the same when I'm metal except for being shiny. Maybe it's the smell, I do have a human scent while I'm in full Decoy mode.

"Hello, Ranger Wolfson," Mike answers. His voice is the same as in the full-robot presentation mode.

Mike's moth sniffs briefly at Howard and declares him uninteresting. This is … weird. Because Mike's mutant power directly senses technology and metal, hence him being labeled a 'technomancer' and body of Howard S. is technology, just not normal tech. Which the scanner-moth senses. Instead, the little gold bug lands on the case of the Hive and starts its examination of one or two of the very very small things wandering around inside.

He looks over at Howard and says, "that's very odd. So… you're apparently Howard Stark. JARVIS, I'm pretty sure Tony has given the Fenris permission to visit, right?"

~

"Mmmmm. Not in so many words, but he didn't object to my presence last few times he saw me here." And Fenris has visited Pepper in her office any number of times, once while stuck in wolf form and badly wounded. "The locals are plenty unsettling themselves, Agent May, or has shield not taken the time to page through Stark Industries Personnel files. I think you might find them enlightening. Do I detect a small hint of 'Howard's not supposed to be here'?" The Old wolf grins. "You always did get into trouble. Paris, Calias, that little bourg outside of Eindoven…"

~

No matter how Howard meant it, Jemma raises an eyebrow at him. Perhaps she's read too much about the womanizing of his son to let such a turn of phrase pass by. As Mike steps closer toward her, she gives a questioning look, but doesn't otherwise speak up about the movement. "I wouldn't call myself a local. Though, he was there the last time we were in the Triskelion. A Frenchman who isn't a Frenchmen?" All of these things are sufficiently enough distraction for Jemma to look one way and then the other before being confronted with the red and white polka dotted box being offered to her.

Gently, the scientist takes it from Howard. "Oh, well, thank you, Mr. S—" she almost calls him his brief fake name for a moment before stopping herself and smiling. "Mr. Stark." Finally tearing herself away from the research and the devices, she carefully and meticulously unties the ribbon and unwraps the package - able to do so without tearing the lovely paper.

~

"What gave me away?" says Howard to Mike. "Dashing good looks? Brilliance? Current location inside Stark Tower? The fact that my picture's in the lobby?" If Pepper were here, he'd give her a Look. See? Lying isn't going to work. He doesn't like Tony's plan, either. They need a third plan. More plans.

When Fenris starts to list off European cities and towns, he puts a finger to his lips and raises his eyebrow. Shhh. He has a reputation to…oh, never mind.

He waits and watches as Simmons opens the package. Like May's, there's a layer of tissue paper to fold back. Inside are a pair of knitted mittens. They're cream coloured with some light blue ticking. Once she picks them up, her phone makes a strange notification sound that it's never made before.

"I uh, well, I reiterate again that I built the systems that SHIELD's architecture is built on. I promise I only hacked you enough to make this work." Throat-clear. "And I won't do it again." He holds up his hand in a Scout's honour salute.

When Simmons checks her phone, she'll find that the mittens have synced via Bluetooth. There is a new app on her phone that displays a wealth of scientific data - atmospheric pressure, EM signatures, heat signatures, radio waves, WiFi hotspot scanning. A quick look shows just how customizable the sensors are. They can be programmed to scan nearly a dozen other frequencies with varying degrees of accuracey. "These are both prototypes. Let me know if you catch any bugs."

~

Melinda May nods to Howard again, then looks at Mike sharply as he addresses someone named 'Jarvis'. CLearly, someone is NOT in the know.

Over what would presumably be the PA system speakers, a voice with a British accent speaks up. "He has not, Mr. Drakos." Of course, being the smart alec of an AI, JARVIS does not volunteer that Pepper is the one that granted Fenris admittance.

And, the disemodied voice just puts May very much on edge.

~

Mike smiles a little less like Mona Lisa and a little more like someone who isn't a bodyguard.

The moth starts tasting nanobots. There are far too many varieties to enumerate in a small space, and that's all it's got, and Mike isn't going to be THAT rude as to set a swarm of snoop-moths loose on Howard Stark-bot's personal bandage factory. So he reaches out a hand, the moth lands on his finger and melts into it, and as Stark puts his hands up in a scout salute, he looks at them and says, "Yeah, that and your fingerprints, which are on file with the FBI… you seem to be much younger than one would expect. It's an honor to meet you."

Mike looks up as Jarvis snarkitizes… "OK, should I have said 'the owner of the building' instead?"

You do realize that I can just ask Pepper, but the wolf isn't acting like he does when he's intruding.

He attaches a "smiley" icon on bluetooth to Simmons's record of his heat-signature, just for fun, and looks at May.

"Were you guys thinking of keeping him locked up? Because that… would be a terrible waste."

~

Fenris chuckles and puts his hands in his pockets. On like a certain other magical being who wears long coats, this is not usually a threatening gesture. "It would be a shame. I'm a little curious why SHIELD is keeping him detained in the first place. It can't be protective custody. All those frenchwomen are long dead by now." Though their ghosts have been known to hold grudges. Fenris would know.

Simmons gets a curious look and sniff. "You smell like that excitable Fitz character I had to put to sleep. Do you know him?"

~

"Mittens!" Simmons seems very excited by the gift and she is quick to put them on. The message from her phone has her pulling it out and then gesturing through things - a bit harder with the gloves on her hands. Immediately, she is absorbed with the whole thing, happy to play around with a new technology. "Oh, this is marvelous. Thank you so much! I can't wait to really put these to the test." At the smiley face on her phone, she raises an eyebrow and glances at Mike, but otherwise she's occupied.

"I'm sure F—" And then the question is given to her by Fenris and Jemma looks up, surprised from her phone. "You put Fitz to sleep?" Her eyes narrow as she studies the strange man in front of her. "Why?"

~

Howard can't bask in the praise for long (as much as he'd like to) as something over in his lab makes an angry beeping sound. "Oh, what now…?" Whatever it is, the inventor needs to see to it right away. "I'm sorry to be rude, but if I don't stabilize this now, days of work will be lost. I'm sure you all can show yourself out when you're ready. Feel free to sample the bar, et cetera." And then he's moving briskly towards the lab after giving Simmons a wink and lifting a wave to the rest of the room. Once he's inside the lab, the glass door slides closed. And then he sets about working with…glowing things and things that whirr and things that go ping.

~

Melinda May's eyebrows quirk again as Howard abruptly takes his leave, but that doesn't stop her from turning to look up at Fenris with her eyes narrowed. "Explain why you felt it necessary to disable one of MY agents."

~

Mike watches Howard go over to his safety-glass-shielded fume-vented "this is where I make the exploding whoopie cushions" station, but he's aware that Fenris put his big fat wolfy foot in it when he said that thing about putting Fitz to sleep. Though honestly, there were points where Mike kind of wanted to do that too… but seriously, it was probably just karma. The man HAS been working on a 'sleep dart' system with great enthusiasm. Fortunately for Mike, robots are immune to most sleep dart venoms. And Fitz would have to learn how Mike's personal chemistry works to come up with one. Or actually several, because different chassis have different chemistries because they need to.

"He's definitely Tony's dad," Mike says, still apparently watching Howard. "That's exactly the same brush-off."

~

"Because he was drunk and going to hurt himself while he flipped out about magic happening to a certain senior agent with an injured knee." Fenris gently reminds May of just that very incident when he had come into the Tri (unauthorized) after having learned that May was wounded confronting the Joker. Something about playing dead. "To be fair, prior to me being concenred he'd hurt himself, he was highly amusing."

~

As Howard abruptly leaves, Simmons takes off the gloves reluctantly. It's warm enough in the Tower and she'll find a later time to test them out. Carefully, she places them back in the box and closes the lid. It's far more likely that Simmons would be the one to figure out Mike's inner chemistry, despite the engineering involved, but for now that is not something she is about delve into.

Her attention remains taken by Fenris' description of why he put Fitz to sleep. "What happened to him?" She knows vaguely of the attack by the Joker from Fitz, but he was understandably patchy on his knowledge of what happened.

~

Melinda May frowns openly at Fenris' words. "Oh. That. Next time, drunk or not, you let me handle him. Got it?" Wait, could that count as FOUR ENTIRE SENTENCES? All at once? And, did she really just scold an Asgardian Sun-Eater? Looking over at Simmons, May tries to determine when the scientist will be ready to leave.

~

"yeah, I'd've put him to sleep too, in the absence of a person-in-charge," Mike says. "Since I don't have an instant anti-drunk ray. I wonder if I could get Lunair to make one of those, and reverse-engineer it. The Dance Grenade is pretty good… only lasts a few seconds, but in a fight…"

Mike's secondary and tertiary processes are busy grinding on the data they got off that 'Nyx' girl earlier, and his quaternary process is watching Star Wars. "Hokey weapons and weird mutant powers are no match for a good blaster at your side," it says to the gestalt, in Harrison Ford's voice.

Unfortunately, Mike kept the speech buffer open, and he says that out loud. In Harrison Ford's voice.

~

Fenris shrugs and smiles a little. May reminds him, in some ways, of certain battle-goddesses. She'd be a good candidate, honestly, if they took applications. And he likes her, which is more than he can say of his fellows. Mikes accidental quote gets a grin. "Hokey religions sometimes are blasters. To wit." He taps the oaken rod at his side. The one that can produce hurricane force winds. "To answer your questions Fitz-mate in terms you might understand, I hacked his mind and put him into power saving mode."

~

"I meant before that." Simmons gives Fenris a look of unadulterated dislike. He put Fitz to sleep and May doesn't seem to agree that it was the best course of action. In her mind, those are two strikes against him. Since she has no idea who he is - Asgardian Suneater or not - she is not about to back down from what she sees as a slight and possible misuse against her best friend. Her cheeks are already turning quite pink at the idea of being called his mate as she counters with a resound, "And I am not his mate. I mean, I'm his mate, but I'm not his mate. There will be no mating."

Jemma looks to May for some help with how to deal with this strange creature. To Mike, she shakes her head, holding her gift to her chest. "Fitz does not get drunk. If it was anything it was something that Joker did to him. Though, her head tilts at the quote, not quite able to be made at him while quoting Han Solo, however, her voice is quite serious when she says, "There will be no shooting of Fitz."

~

"Whatever the case, Wolfson, don't do it again. Simmons, are you about ready?" May figures they've just about worn out their welcome in this Tower for now.

~

"I'm pretty sure that whether Joker did it or he did it, being drunk is being drunk," Mike says, "and anyway I wouldn't SHOOT him. I was just, um, talking to myself out loud."

He nods to Wolfson, and says, "Jarvis, if we could have an elevator to the lobby again please?"

Because in this building, the only way to get around is to ask the guy who's REALLY in charge.

"Honestly," he says to May, "were you guys thinking of keeping him locked up?"

~

Fenris, for once, doesn't just teleport out. He turns and walks with the group not in the least self conscious about having implied that Simmons is Fitz wife/girlfriend/what have you. After all, she just provided him with the correct context, which was the whole point of that. "Oh?" He says mildly in a manner May might find slightly reminiscent of someone else. "Really? His scent's rather all over you. Seemed a reasonable assumption."

Fenris glances back at Mike with a chuckle. "Interesting voice mimicry you do there."

~

Wolfson. That is an interesting title. Simmons studies Fenris for a moment and then gives Mike a a nod of her head. "Just making sure. He's a dear, but he needs such protecting sometimes." Like, apparently, getting knocked out by Fenris while facing the Joker. "I don't think anyone could," she tells Mike about Howard Stark. After all, he's a Stark. He just linked her mittens via bluetooth to her phone. Winter is Coming and he has prepared for it.

"We're lab partners. We are around each other a lot," she explains to Fenris, the blush starting to recede at that. With that, she takes a deep breath and nods to May. "Yes, I think I'm ready." She casts a glance back toward Howard's research before moving toward May so they can exit the building.

~

Melinda May looks at Drakos as the elevator arrives. "No. Most everyone was only too glad to see him leave." She looks at Fenris askance. "Too much of a security risk." Hint. She steps into the elevator, expecting Simmons to follow, and she immediately gets that 'being watched' sensation again. This time, though, she suspects it's that person Jarvis. Whoever he is. And if anything happens, she'll track him down and make him apologize.

~

"And besides, with him gone, you can reverse-engineer the systems you found him in," Mike says. "I can imagine a lot of situations where a human decoy that strongly resembles the original, but isn't them, would be a great thing. Except, the thing is, Howard back there? He's alive. I'm sure of it. I could have talked to the stuff he was made of, but it would be like trying to talk to your body - it's got its own 'life' and it takes a lot more work to accomplish it."

That's probably the information that Pepper wanted Mike to provide. Maybe.

~

"I can confirm for you that he has a soul… or at least a reasonable facimile thereof." Fenris notes. He's not thinking, at the moment, that this may be either off putting or very strange to poor Simmons. May at least knows that she's dealing with a god-wolf.

~

The topic of souls is enough to terrify any good empirical scientist into silence, right?

Mike exchanges sudoku patterns with Jarvis as the elevator reaches the ground, and he notes, aloud, "If you do end up making more of those things, I'd advise against direct-connection to their brains. Too easy to set up an accidental quantum entanglement in psionic frequencies."

There, that should make things much less turbulent for Simmons. It's just another kind of energy. The robot mutant smiles as the elevator door opens.

~

Melinda May has NO idea what Drakos just said, but if it helps Simmons, so be it. She nods to both men, then leads the scientist back out of the Tower. It's a bit of a drive back to the Triskelion.


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