Archaic Kinds of Fun

chandelier tango

July 28, 2014

“Do you and Tony have a conjoined closet?” Jo blinked to clear her vision and turned her head to the side; she’s laying on the couch and reading, Darcy is carrying stuff back and forth for Tony, and Tony is working on his suit again.

“You know, we kinda do. I can’t remember the last time I wore one of my own shirts,” Jo mumbled quietly to herself.

“She keeps stealing my band shirts. And my button-ups. And my silk boxers,” Tony grumbled.

“You wear his boxers?” Darcy asked in a scandalized voice.

“Just to sleep in. They bunch up under the leggings.” Darcy froze in the middle of transporting a hunk of metal, and Jo met her eyes across the room.

“Can I just call you mom and dad?”

“I haven’t been called daddy in a while.” Darcy and Jo made the same “eww” face and then continued on with what they were doing. The lab was quiet for the next few minutes, except for the loud music and Tony’s muttering.

“Mom? How did you know Dad was the one?” Darcy was sitting next to Tony with her cheek resting on her fist and her elbow on the table, and Jo turned to the next page in her book.

“He has a backup Malibu home and looks amazing naked.”

“And your mom does yoga.”

“I hate both of you.”

“They grow up so fast,” Tony sighed. Jo hummed an agreement, and silence fell over them again.

“You have an incoming call, sir.” Darcy and Jo both groaned, because most calls mean that they have to go somewhere. Or one of them is going to have to lie and say that Tony Stark is no longer in the country.

“I’m attending a show in Paris.”

“It’s Director Fury, sir.” Tony dropped what he was working on and spun around, and Jo sat up to watch the show.

“Stark, I don’t—”

“You owe me an explanation! HYDRA bombed my house!”

“And I cleaned it up! We will talk later! Right now, I need to speak with Eris!” Fury really sounds on edge, more so than usual.

“Right here, sir.” Tony trained a betrayed look on her, but Jo just shrugged.

“The Sterling brothers have something of ours, and they have requested that you and Agent Barton retrieve it.”

“Something, huh?”

“This one is strictly off the books, Eris. Retrieve it and keep it safe.” Jo felt her brows pulling together and sat up a little straighter. That’s not proper protocol.

“Yes, sir. I’ll get Clint and head straight there. JARVIS, can you ask Clint to come here?”

“Make that everyone, JARVIS,” Tony added.

“One last thing, Eris.” Oh, she thought Fury had hung up. He normally hangs up as soon as he’s done saying whatever he needs to say.


“We have reports that Deadpool has been frequenting the area.”

“Uncle Wade’s there? Aw, shit! He hasn’t killed too many people, has he?”

“Not this time. Hurry up and get your asses over there!” There was an audible click this time, and Jo groaned as she dropped her head into her hands.

“Mission?!” Clint slid into the room, and Jo looked up to watch him quickly right himself. Sometimes his ability to reorient himself makes her a little jealous. Everyone else slowly filtered in after him, and Jo stood up so she could stand next to Tony. She leaned on the table next to where he was, and he draped his arm across the table so he could hold onto her opposite hip.

“Is everything okay?” Steve asked. He might have been the last one to show up, but he’s still got Jo’s vote for leader.

“About seven years ago, Clint and I did a job in Scotland. There was an underground ring forcing kids to fight off their family’s debts, and a lot of the kids were getting killed. I’m the perfect candidate for a fighting ring, and Clint was my partner. We managed to take out the ring and made a few friends along the way. The Sterling brothers fight fair enough and helped us with the takedown, and they’re actually pretty fun guys. They have something of SHIELD’s, and Fury wants me and Clint to get it,” she explained as quickly as possible.

“Do you need backup?” Yep, she’s definitely voting for Steve.

“The Sterling brothers won’t hurt us,” Clint said. He looks way too happy.

“What about Uncle Wade?” Okay, Tony is giving her a very pointed and very angry look.

“Uncle Wade won’t hurt us either,” she said defensively.

“Deadpool’s going to be there?” Clint doesn’t sound whiney, per se, but he doesn’t look so happy anymore.

“Clint, pack a bag and we’ll meet at the foyer in twenty. I need to talk to Tony.” Clint was the first one out of the lab, with what looked like a skip in his step, and everyone else filed out after him. Darcy was the last one to go, and she paused in the doorway.

“Don’t worry, Mom. I’ll take care of Dad until you get back,” Darcy said and gave her a little salute on the way out. Tony turned his face into her stomach once the room was emptied, and Jo lightly ran her fingers through his hair.

“Uncle Wade? Really?”

“A lot of people hate him, so I don’t bring him up. Him and Logan go way back, and I first met him when I was eight. I thought he was fascinating, but Logan can’t stand him. I mean, he’s a mercenary, but I kinda get it. You know his background, right?”

“The experimentation, the torture, and his resulting psychosis? Yeah, I’m familiar.”

“He helped me out after the thing with ROSE, in his own strange way.”

“Why Uncle Wade?” Tony tilted his head to look up at her, but he kept his arms wrapped tight around her middle.

“Because he gets a kick out of it, and Logan gets this funny little throbbing vein on his forehead whenever I call him that.” Tony smiled at her, but his grip around her waist was starting to get a little painful.

“You’ll be safe?” Jo reached down to grab his face, palms flat against his cheeks, and leaned down to make sure that she had his full attention.

“I promise that I will come home,” she said slowly. She felt Tony’s mind calm, just a tiny bit, and smiled. “Also, I’m taking some of your shirts.”

“You’re awful!” Tony yelled as she raced from the room. “And I love you!”

“Love you too, boss!”

It didn’t take her very long to pack, because she only packed one change of clothes and a sturdy hairbrush. She’s wearing a white Iron Man shirt, so she kept it on and traded her leggings for a pair of skinny jeans. She tugged on her pair of steel-toes, because you never know what might happen, and she went ahead and redid her hair. When she got downstairs, Clint was waiting for her in one of those giant wingback chairs that Tony put there on a whim. He had a bag at his feet and a wide smile on his face, and Jo rolled her eyes.

“You know they’re going to kick our asses, right?”

“Not if I kick theirs first. Natasha and Thor will let us know what we miss in tango tonight, and Fury has a jet waiting for us. Let’s go, Josie.” Clint walked out the front door, and Jo stopped just before taking a step outside.

“JARVIS? You’ll let me know if Tony needs me, right?”

“Of course, Miss Jo.”


“I don’t like this plan,” the tallest woman said with a scowl.

“Would you rather we just shoot at them?” the second woman asked with a perfect smile.

“The two of you are only good for bickering,” the last woman said in a quiet growl. Her face was cloaked in the shadows, but that didn’t stop the other two women from glaring at her. A heavy set of footsteps sounded on the floor, and all three gathered in the room stood a little straighter. They waited as the man who they called leader, for now, walked into the room to see what the final word would be.

“The plan takes time and will be slow, but we can be patient. They are already moving into position, and we barely even have to lift a finger. For now.”


Tony rubbed at his eyes and slouched down in his chair, and he heard Darcy reorganizing some of his tools. Dum-E had an accident earlier and was currently in a time-out, and he’s still wearing that ridiculous sock sweater that Jo knitted. JARVIS just told him that Jo and Clint are now officially out of the country, and he’s got a bad feeling deep in his gut. He prefers to use his intellect to figure out if there’s anything wrong, and Jo said that the mission would be easy. Her and Clint know the people that they’re going to visit…she’ll be fine.

“Can I ask you something?” Darcy’s voice was a little far away, and Tony sighed without opening his eyes.

“You just did.” He could hear Darcy’s huff and tried not to smile; he really is getting attached to the little spitfire, and she’s a great assistant.

“Why is there a dreamcatcher in your lab? Shouldn’t it be, you know, in your bedroom?” When his eyes opened, they were already on the dreamcatcher. He’s not really sure why he hung it back up in the lab…but that’s not exactly true. He showed Jo his lab right after showing her bedroom, and her eyes seemed to immediately find the dreamcatcher when she walked inside. She’d smiled and her eyes had watered up again, and she’d hugged him so tight that his spine popped. That’s why he hung it up in the lab.

“Jo made it and hung it in here.” It’s half the truth. It’s close enough. Darcy hummed and shuffled a few steps over his way so that she was standing directly under it. Looks like she’s done reorganizing.

“Sounds like her. So, I need to hear the story. If I don’t hear it, I’m going to keep getting freaked out by you two.” Darcy plopped into a chair across from him, and her big blue eyes were looking right at him.

“What story? I’m not the telepath,” he said with a tight smile. No, his telepath is in a different country and fighting for something that Nick-fucking-Fury wants.

“About how you guys got so close and how long ago was the failed make out session?” Tony blinked, Darcy smiled, and…what?

“What makes you think we’ve ever kissed?”

“Because you’re always touching, you cuddle, you hold hands, she washes your back…do you want me to keep going?”

“What’s that got to do with kissing?” Science is so less complicated. People are too complicated. Can’t he just go back to science?

“Well, you two had to have tried and then realized that it just didn’t feel right. That’s why you’re so close, right?” Now Darcy looks just as confused as he feels, because where did all of that come from? He’s close to Jo because, because, just because!

“No, we’ve never kissed. She saved my life. That’s all.” She’s taken several bullets for him, and she even let him beat her down to get a point across. She took care of him when there was no one else and somehow managed to save him from himself. She knows every little thing about him; everything that makes him tick, everything that he’s scared of, everything that makes him who he is. Their closeness is logical. She knows, and she still cares.

“Huh. So how do you know that you’re not in love with her?” Tony keeps forgetting how young Darcy is, but it’s hard to forget right now. Her eyes are big and open, and she’s smiling just a little.

“I’m just not,” he shrugged.

“Yeah, but how you do know if you’ve never tried?” Why can’t he just know? Kids these days, always wanting to ask why.

“Don’t you have something better to do?”

“Do I?” Her nose wrinkled up a little as she smiled at him, and Tony rolled his eyes with a little sigh.

“You’re free to go. JARVIS will call if I need you.”

“Need some time to think things over?” He just gave her a look, a patented Stark look of exasperation, and she rolled her eyes back at him as she stood up. “Even if it’s not true love, what you and Jo have is still special. Later, Daddy-o!”


“Roderick! Camden! Where are ya, ya bastards?!”

“What did ya ca’ me?” Jo locked her legs and crossed her arms, and she felt Clint’s foot and bicep pressing against her. Two pairs of ice blue eyes glared down at them from a towering height of six-five, but Jo didn’t back down. Clint was perfectly calm beside her, which helped Jo keep her calm.

“You heard me, Cammy. You’ve got somethin’ of mine.”

“We got it, lassie. Safe ‘n’ sound,” Camden said. The only way to tell them apart was by the scar that cut through Roderick’s left eyebrow; the rest of them was completely identical. Both toweringly tall, stacked, and with dark brown hair and ice blue eyes.

“Ya know there’s only one way to get it,” Roderick said with a teasing grin.

“You know damn well that I’ve come all the way out here to fight your asses! Now, name the time and place.”

“You remember the time and place, tank. As does your dog,” Camden with his teeth bared in a parody of a smile. It sounds like an insult, but he’s actually complimenting Clint. During their last visit, Jo took on the Sterling twins while Clint went head-to-head with their bodyguard. Rory is even bigger than the two men he’d give his life to protect, and Jo had laughed with the twins while Clint wiped the floor with the big guy.

“I’m guessing you’ve got everything set up for me?” Jo finally asked. They work the underground, so they probably knew the moment that she and Clint touched down.

“O’course. We’ve got someone else been waitin’ for ya too,” Camden said and turned on his heel.

“Righ’ this way,” Roderick said with a sweep of his arm. Jo looked at Clint, Clint looked at Jo, and they were both grinning as they walked behind the twins.


“Hey, Dr. Banner! Just the doctor I was looking for,” Darcy said with a little wave. The other scientist blinked behind his glasses, and it made him look like an owl for some reason.

“Can I help you with something, Darcy?” She shuffled on her feet and rethought her request really quick; her left arm started itching, just below her wrist, and her decision was reaffirmed.

“Yeah. Is there any way that you can take a look at my arm? Tony paid the doctor off and stuck me with a cast, but I don’t think it’s actually broken.”

“I don’t know. If another doctor—”

“It’s so itchy. If it is broken, don’t worry about it. You’ve gotta have something in here that can see through a cast,” she said and looked around the room. It has the same layout as Tony’s lab, there’s even a couch, but it’s a lot cleaner.

“I guess taking one look won’t hurt,” he said and slowly stood up. His clothes were ruffled, like he hasn’t been sleeping, and Darcy felt her brows draw together. Her and Jo are going to have to work out a schedule for the two resident scientists. Apparently, genius is another word for forgetful. Forget to sleep. Forget to eat. Forget how to have normal every day conversations.

“Thank you so much. I keep asking Tony, but him and Jo are both convinced that my arm is all mangled. I tried to tell them that I’m fine.” Bruce directed her over to a seat, and he wheeled over a giant piece of machinery for her to put her arm inside of.

“When was your arm broken?” Bruce was looking at something on the other side of the machine, so she can’t see him.

“Um, three weeks ago? Something like that,” she said and shrugged her right shoulder. Her left one needs to stay still for just a little longer. “Is it really broken?”

“No, uh, not at all. Completely healed.”

“See! I knew it wasn’t really broken. Can you get this cast off? I don’t want Tony to take a power saw to my arm.” Twenty minutes later, Darcy was walking around with her left arm in the breeze. Just goes to show that geniuses and telepaths don’t know everything.


“Come on, Jo! You can kick that guy’s ass! You’re making your ancestors cry!” Jo watched her blood streak through the air as she tossed her head back and glared over at her Uncle Wade. Of course, everyone in the world would hate him except for the somewhat-good-guy underground fighting ring. The unkillable mercenary had a front row seat, and he had one arm slung around Clint’s shoulders as they both cheered her on.

“I know! It’s the other one I’m worried about!” Right on cue, a fist connected with the center of her spine and threw her forward. Her body crashed into Roderick’s, and she was quick to throw an uppercut into his jaw. She used his body to push herself back, and she hit her knees before Camden could land another hit on her exposed back.

“Kick his ass, Josie!” Clint yelled.

“Go, Jo! Go, go, Jo!” Great, not only is she fighting the wonder twins birthed straight from the bowels of Hell, but now she has giggling cheerleaders too? Can this get any worse? A meaty hand wrapped around her ankle and pulled, and Jo was kicking out before her head collided against the concrete floor. And now she’s got a migraine.

“Is that the best you got?!” She jumped back into the fight with a grin and said to hell with everything else. It’s time to have some real fun.


“Show me your fist.” Darcy raised her wrapped fist for Natasha’s inspection and tried not to feel like an idiot. She should have stayed in the lab with Tony; she knew how to handle him at least. “Tuck your thumb under.”

“Like this?” Natasha nodded her approval, and Darcy twisted her wrist to take a look at her thumb placement. Okay, she can remember this.

“Now, when you punch, hit with your knuckles. Not with the flat part of your fingers. Keep your wrist straight.”

“Knuckles, not fingers, straight wrist. Got it.”

“Okay, face your opponent.” Darcy turned, and Thor smiled down at her. She can’t hit Thor! His jaw will break her hand even if she only taps it.

“You can do this, Darcy,” Thor said and gentled his smile some. Natasha was walking around behind her, and Darcy shifted on her feet.

“Lock your knees and angle your hips. Swing from the hips. It makes the hit harder,” Natasha said as she moved Darcy into the right position. “Now, hit him.”

“Sorry, Thor.” Darcy made her fist like Natasha showed her and swung. The punch turned Thor’s head to the side, and Darcy felt her heart pounding in her throat as he used his thumb to wipe at the corner of his mouth. She punched Thor! In the face!

“Very good, Darcy!” Thor laughed as his arms locked around her waist, and she might have screamed just a little when he picked her up and spun her around.

“It’s a work in progress. Put her down, Thor. Darcy needs to know some basic self-defense just in case we’re not around.” Thor placed her back on the ground at Natasha’s request, and he beamed another smile at her. The big goof is probably just happy to help her out, because he’s an awesome guy like that. (Not for the first time, she wondered how Jane could give him up. Whatever. He deserves better anyway.)

“I am honored to help you, Darcy Lewis.”

“Yeah, yeah. Just stand there and look pretty while I hit you,” Darcy said and smiled back.

Two hours later, Darcy was completely exhausted and bruised in a few places. Despite all of that, she was laughing and actually having a good time. Thor’s laugh continuously rang out throughout the gym as Natasha showed her new techniques, and the redheaded assassin doesn’t look so menacing when she’s laughing at Darcy’s attempts at self-preservation. Er, self-defense. Maybe it’s because Jo’s not around, but the assassin doesn’t seem so bad. Natasha finally called an end to today’s training though, so she’s now laying across a blue mat and trying to remember how to breathe.

“You will be a formidable warrior one day, Darcy,” Thor said and lightly patted her knee. He’s sitting up next to her, and Natasha is standing next to him and looking at a cell phone.

“I’ll leave the woman warrior stuff to people like Jo. And Natasha.” When Natasha looked over, Darcy winked at her. “Is that Clint and Jo?”

“They have completed their mission and will return tomorrow.” Darcy struggled to sit up, and Thor put an arm around her back to help her into a complete sitting position.

“Why tomorrow?” Natasha raised a brow and pursed her lips, like she’s trying to think of how to answer.


“There you are! Is everything okay?” Darcy looked over at the doorway, where Steve was standing and looking like he’d just stepped out of a fifties housewife’s wet dream. Why is he wearing an apron?

“Self-defense lessons,” Natasha said. Darcy waved her arm, the cast-free one, and smiled. “Are you okay?”

“Oh, I, um…” It looks like Steve forgot that he was wearing the apron. At least it has Darth Vader on it. “I cooked dinner, if you’re hungry.”

“Dude, I am starving! You’re my hero! Right after Thor. Help me up, please?” Thor lifted her off the ground and tossed her over his shoulder, and Darcy groaned quietly as her sore muscles protested the movement.

“After dinner, I’ll give you some cream to help with the aches,” Natasha said and glanced over at her. That made Darcy smile, because it looks like the cold assassin can care.

“Don’t worry. I’ve already got some Arnica.”


“Look, Jo! I’m a bird!” Uncle Wade yelled before jumping off the rafters overhead. Rory, a giant redhead with a black eye and missing tooth from his earlier fight with Clint, caught him before he hit the ground and tossed him through the air. Jo’s pretty sure that watching Deadpool is like normal people watching her. Jo’s tough and everything, but he’s at a whole other level. Jo squealed as strong arms latched around her waist and spun her around, and she banged her fists against the top of his masked head.

“Down, boy!” He immediately dropped her, and Jo reached out to grab a covered arm to right herself.

“C’mon, Jo! We’re celebratin’!” he yelled.

“Celebratin’ what?” one of the voices whispered.

“Celebratin’ the fact that we’re a complete dumbass?” another one asked.

“Shh! She’s listening!”

“She’s always listening. Get outta our head!” Uncle Wade shook his head, which just moved the voices around some. The voices are never quiet, and Jo’s one of the few people who gets that. Her Uncle Wade can’t really help who he is.

“Why the long face, pussycat?” He tapped her chin and bent at the knees, and Jo looked at his mask covered face. She’s seen under it, a few times, and she definitely gets why he keeps himself completely covered. He’s hiding from the world and himself, because everyone is cruel.

“I gotta call the boss man.”

“Why are ya a bodyguard, Jo?” He twisted his body against her so that his back was pressed to her front and his head was on her shoulder. “It’s so boring.”

“I care about him, so I don’t mind,” she shrugged. He rolled with the movement and then twisted around so that they were back-to-back, and his head moved to her other shoulder.

“You call the people you care about?”

“I call you every Christmas, don’t I?” Uncle Wade made a loud awing noise, moved back to her front to kiss her on the forehead, and then head-butted her before strutting away.

“Call the bossy!” She watched him get swallowed up by a drunk and laughing crowd, and he was crowd surfing a moment later. Jo laughed her way over to a corner where it was a little bit quieter, because the loud music echoed throughout the building. Oh well, it makes celebrating much easier. Calls not so much.

“How may I help you tonight, Miss Jo?”

“JARVIS! Is Tony still up?”

“He has retired for the evening. Doctor Banner, however, is still awake.” Sneaky little AI; he probably has a recording of her and Tony’s conversations, like the one where she admitted her embarrassment about her first face-to-face meeting with the Doc. Whatever. She’s not embarrassed anymore.

“Awesome! Can you patch me through, buddy?” There was a quiet click, and Jo hummed to herself as she jumped up onto a barrel. Her back was propped against the wall, and she had a perfect view of all the dancers. Who knew such big guys could get down? And it looks like Uncle Wade and Clint are having a Macarena-off.

“Um, hello?”

“Hiya, Doc! What’s doin’?” Jo relaxed as Bruce relayed the day’s events, and she kept quiet except for a few hums here and there. Bruce looked at Darcy’s arm and declared it all healed, so Darcy doesn’t have to wear that itchy cast anymore. (Something about that tickled Jo’s mind, but she’s too drunk to properly focus right now. She’ll think on it later.) Natasha and Thor helped Darcy with some self-defense lessons, Steve cooked a delicious meatloaf and potatoes dinner for everyone, and Hulk sparred with Thor after dinner. Tony trained with Natasha and Steve some, and everyone went to bed after that. Except for the Doc.

“That’s everything on this end. How are things there? It sounds very…loud.” Jo smiled and brought one leg up so she could rest her cheek on her knee.

“I beat Roderick, but Camden kicked my ass. Then Clint won a fight against their bodyguard. Not like real fighting. It was like sparring but with a clear winner. Now we’re celebratin’. Deadpool hasn’t killed anyone, and the Sterling bros have their own liquor. Clint and I had a barrel drinking contest. I think I won.”

“You think?”

“I drank more, but I also fell off the barrel. I’m a little fuzzy on the rules,” Jo said with a throaty laugh. She was remembering Clint’s victory dance, which looked more like the chicken dance to her.

“Maybe you two can call a tie?”

“That sounds fair. You’re the best, Doc.”

“And you are very drunk,” Bruce said with a quiet laugh of his own.

“Hey, Doc?” Jo’s voice was quieter now, but Bruce could still hear her easily. He’s alone in his lab where the noise level is practically nonexistent, so she can talk a little quieter if she wants.

“Yes, Jo?”

“I’m sorry I’ve been avoidin’ ya; it’s not very nice of me. I didn’t really mean to. There was healin’ to do and then Clint got us into that tango class, and you wouldn’t look at me that night, and now I’m here. I’ve been meanin’ to talk to ya, but I thought I was embarrassed because of the nakedness and green and heroes. I think I’m actually…I’m…” She sounded completely miserable, and her already slow drawl was slurred out in a whisper.

“You’re what, Jo?” The Doc’s voice was so quiet and soft, and she felt like she could tell him anything.

“I think I’m scared.” There. She’s finally said it.

“Hulk is—”

“Don’t be stupid, Doc, I’m not scared of Hulk. I like him. I’d like a spar one day, if that’s cool with him. I think I’m scared of you.”

“Me? Why me?” Jo tried to organize her thoughts, but her head feels so fuzzy. This is something that she hasn’t even really admitted to herself; it’s been festering in the back of her mind behind a false wall labeled “embarrassment.” She scratched a hand through her hair and lightly bit the inside of her cheek as she tried to explain.

“I panicked, with Tony. I don’t do panic, ever, so no one’s ever…I mean, Tony doesn’t remember and you weren’t actually there, but you were there. You heard me freakin’ the fuck out, and the mind thing. The mind thing, Doc.”

“What about the mind thing?” Jo’s starting to sound a little panicked now, but he just had to ask. (He can’t remember anyone ever being afraid of him, just what he could turn into.)

“I hate the telepathy, Doc. I hate it so fuckin’ much; it drives me crazy. I’m not supposed to have it, it’s not right, you know? Not right. I didn’t want to learn how to use it, I still don’t most days. I hate talkin’ about it, I hate bein’ asked about it…I just hate it, okay? I use it on Tony all the time, normally with his insistence ‘cause he’s lazy, but Tony doesn’t scare me. He’s pretty fucked up too, so it’s easier with him. It’s just so easy with him. But you, Doc…I told you how it worked, how it felt, and you even fuckin’ helped with it. Helped me do somethin’ new and more. I don’t know if I went along with it for Tony or just because you were talkin’ to me, but it scared the shit outta me. I’m scared of it, Doc.”

“You don’t have to be scared of it, Jo, or me. I’d never ask you to do something you weren’t comfortable with, and I, uh, I’m a little scared of you too. We all have things that we’d like to keep buried, right?” There was a quiet laugh at the end, but Jo could hear the darkness in it even in her shitfaced state.

“Bruce, I would never—”

“No, I know that, I know. I think what I’m trying to say is that this is new to all of us and we’re all a little scared, but we’re still better off together. Aren’t we?” Jo lifted her face up and let her leg dangle over the edge again. For the moment, things in her world made sense again. Except for the part where Clint and Deadpool were waltzing with various members of an underground Scottish crime syndicate. That part is still a little off.

“Yeah, we are. You really are a super genius, Doc.” His laughter was lighter this time, and the sound made Jo so happy that she swayed dangerously on her barrel. It definitely wasn’t because of that other barrel of homemade Scottish ale. Nope, just happiness.

“Jo! Come dance with me!” Jo tipped her head to find the source of the voice, and she carefully maneuvered herself to stand on top of the barrel so she could point a menacing finger at the archer.

“No chandelier tangoing without me!”

“You can tango on a chandelier?”

“Not alone.” Bruce’s snort of laughter carried through the phone, and Jo raised a different finger as Clint began dancing by himself. Come to think of it, why is there a chandelier here? The place looks like a warehouse.

“Go tango on the chandelier before Clint hurts himself,” Bruce said with another low chuckle.

“His face already looks like hamburger meat, it can’t get much worse. Still, when will I get another chance to do a chandelier tango? We’ll head out in the mornin’, and, Bruce?”


“Thanks, for everythin’. I’ll hate myself a little in the mornin’ for bein’ such a whiner, but I’m glad we had this talk. G’night, Doc!”
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This isn't my longest chapter, but I think Deadpool makes up for it. Deadpool is one of my all-time favorite characters, because he's insane but he's also extremely layered. Also, if Wolverine is in the story, then Deadpool has to be too. He might not be a major character, but he'll get a mention every once in a while.

Darcy is now cast-free, and Steve cooks in an apron. There was even some Bruce-Jo interaction! Which was really fun to write. Things are slowly moving along, and I would love to know people's thoughts!