|Changing of the Guard|
|What: S.H.I.E.L.D. reassigns two of their agents.|
Natasha has been off the helicarrier on a mission for a few weeks. She's only recently returned, and is sitting in the War Room with a packet in her hands containing reassignment paperwork. She was told not to open it until her new partner joined her, whomever that might be. Barton has been sent into the field for the long term and she is getting someone new to train and keep on the up and up.
She's wearing a simple pair of jeans with a blouse, jacket, and boots, tapping a single nail on the table to mark off the time as she waits.
The War Room door slides open, and out steps Roy Harper. Freshly shavened and looking quite -presentable-, as per the scribbled sticky note on his own packet of orders, the agent glances, flashing a wide grin at Natasha as he notes her.
"Hey, hot stuff, what's the lates---" There's a brief pause as the mental filter in Roy's head slides back in place, along with a mental glower from a certain Director. "Er, that is, Agent Romanoff, good afternoon."
Taking a seat, Roy glances at his instructions, before flashing a smile. "So what's going on?" Nobody ever tells the junior agents anything. Theirs is not to to ask why, but to do.
A slow smile spreads across Natasha's face at the look of a cleaned up Roy attempting politeness. All of a sudden, it all makes sense. She's being assigned to Roy because she's probably the only female agent here who won't sue SHIELD for sexual harassment due to him running his mouth. She hasn't killed Hawkeye yet, after all. "Agent Harper, please have a seat. I do believe we have both been reassigned."
For all Roy knew, Clint might have been re-assigned due to that situation with the message he'd been asked to deliver. Not that it was something he could have mentioned, as it wasn't -his- place to say.
Secured in his seat, Roy studies Natasha as though trying to gauge how much he could get away with as he leans back in his seat. "Yeah. Question is, is it punishment for me, or for you? I'm betting on me, mostly because as easy as you are on the eyes, I'm supposed to be setting a good example for my kid. You know Fury's put my daughter up to -making sure I shave- every day?" There's an incredulous note in his voice. No father should ever have his daughter -hovering- around the bathroom while he's in his boxers.
"I am sure Special Agent Lian does a fine job of forcing you to abide by SHIELD regulations, Roy," Natasha says with an amused expression. She opens the packet and pulls out the information. Yep, new partner. "Barton is going to be off the grid for some time. Deep cover mission. I think in the interest of not having your head mounted on a wall by Agent Danvers, Fury has taken pity on you and sent you to me."
"... spirits, don't tell me the old man's stooped to enlisting five years olds into the Special Forces now," Roy moans, before tossing his hands into the air and reaching for the packet he'd carelessly tossed onto the desk.
Opening it, he confirms the re-assignment, before glancing at Natasha. "Right. That, or he's trying to make sure I'm at least working with someone on the tentaclefaces." Leaning back, Roy glances at the redheaded superspy. "You at all familiar with, uh..." Right, Fury'd already dressed him down for the whole interrogation, and he wasn't so comfortable relaying this on.
"I am not. Please, debrief me on the situation. I've been tied up with the exploding zombots and the Winter Soldier." Natasha slides the paperwork aside and folds her hands on the table top, looking at Roy curiously.
Rubbing his head, Roy sighed. "Well, we'd had a couple of missing people, apparently abducted by aliens. Turned out, after we captured a couple of them and uh..." A slight wince. "Interrogated them..." A polite way of putting it, considering the trouble Hill, Harper, and Wisdom had gotten into afterwards. "The aliens turned out to -also- have our missing people squared away as part of them. So STAR Labs are trying to figure out if it's even possible to separate them, and... well... there's probably more of them out there. We just have to find out."
"That doesn't sound good," Natasha admits. A brow arches upwards at the pause. "You did no such interrogation, Mister Harper," she states simply. "SHIELD does not engage in such things." Publically. No records. No evidence. No trails. Welcome to Black Ops, Roy. "But we'll have to look closer into this."
"No, but if you're up to it, I want to see if we can hook up with Agent Wisdom and put our heads together." There's a pause. "If Fury isn't done making examples of uh... not engaging in such things." Then again, Roy had the impression he was being left out there as a potential scapegoat in case word got out.
Sighing, Roy brings his hands back to the base of his neck, glancing at Natasha. "So what's a babe like you choose a business like -this- for?" He knew a little bit here and there, but...
"It wasn't my choice, not in the beginning," Natasha admits. "I was a Russian orphan. The Red Room trained me to be a spy for the Motherland. I was. Then eventually I defected to the United States." She shrugs. "It sounds boring, I know. But so it is." Sure it does, when you leave off things like suspicion that you're the missing Grand Duchess Anastasia, last of the Romanoff line, or that you nearly died giving birth to a stillborn child while fleeing invaders in Russia as a teenage soldier, or that you were married to a Russian test pilot, or a ballerina, or a million other things she's been.
Eyeing the paperwork briefly, Roy blinks at certain numbers before glancing at Natasha, tilting his head. "Wow... that long ago? You don't look a day over twenty," he mutters, half to himself. "So you and Fury go back a -long- way?"
"I don't go back quite as long as Fury does. Or Cap. But close. In fact, I first met Captain America during World War II as a thirteen year old girl." Brainwashed by undead ninjas, nonetheless. Natasha smiles. "Unlike our red, white and blue friend, I didn't get to take an extended nap between then and now."
Now Roy eyes Natasha with greater respect. "Boy, beauty sleep -really- does work well in your case," he says, before rubbing his face. "So you and Fury are..." He makes quotation marks with his fingers. "- 'special'?" There's a quick glance back at the paperwork, before Roy shakes his head. "Man... you are old enough to be my grandmother."
"I prefer old enough to be your much older, much better looking, sister," Natasha deadpans. "I was injected with the Soviet version of the Super Soldier Serum that made Cap what he is. One of the side effects was greatly slowed aging." She shrugs. "It's not all it's cracked up to be. You spend a lot of time watching friends and loved ones age and die." If you have friends and loved ones.
"Ehhhh... that doesn't sound like much fun," Roy grimaces. "Then again, working all this time doesn't sound like that much fun either." Cricking his neck, Roy flashes a grin at Natasha. "Look on the bright side, you've got seniority over just about everyone. So that means you can order -anyone- to just get you a cup of coffee and they'd have to listen."
"Speaking of, why don't we get out of here and get a real cup of coffee? I hate talking to a new partner in a cold, sterile place like this. We are people, not robots," Natasha notes with a frown. She stands, gathering the paperwork. "Besides, despite all our amazing technology, SHIELD still sucks at making a decent pot of coffee."
"Works for me. As long as you're not one of those people who like trying a zillion different kind of coffees. I'm still trying to not think abot the coffee-poop one someone tried foisting off on me before..." Roy says.
Yep, that brain-to-mouth filter still needed some adjustment.
"I believe it's poop coffee, not coffee poop. The beans get eaten by some sort of money which doesn't digest them, and they're collected from its excrement. Supposed to be amazing. Still, it's taken out of monkey poop. I'm not drinking it." Natasha smiles. "Have you been cleared to pilot a flying car yet?" she asks as she leads him out.
"Hell, I'm not drinking that either," mutters Roy. "And no. I'm still trying to get clearance for a hover-cycle. Wonder if Barton'll mind if I bummed it..." There's a grin. "He would, but eff that."
"If you promise not to tell anyone, I'll let you drive," Natasha offers, handing him the keys. Trust exercise perhaps? Or a death wish maybe.
Or just someone who's led a long enough life that nothing fazes her anymore.
Nonetheless, Roy takes the keys with an eagerness that might almost match Lian's passion for Disney princesses. Boys and their toys.
"To the SHIELD-mobile, chum!"
It's almost immediately followed by "Um, so top-deck, or bottom-deck?"
"Bottom. Less eyes see you down there. Something to remember for the future," Natasha points out. "I land on the upper deck when I purposely want my presence announced."
"Huh..." Now Roy grins. "Never would've thought of it that way. Going to take some getting used to thinking in uh..." Now Roy's looking for the right way to put it. "... three-dimension? I mean, usually there's straight, left, right, behind. Now I've got to think about up and down too... tsch. And Ollie'd say my brain's good only for keeping my skull from collapsing on itself."
"Well, we'll work on getting your brain trained to be used, rather than abused, Roy." Natasha clasps him on the shoulder. "Come on, let's see how many seconds you can fly the car before I'm clinging to the dashboard screaming like a cheerleader."