The next day as Leah opened her eyes she drowsily look to her night table, there was a new rose button on the vase and … a letter. He had written her back, she was afraid he wouldn´t, she stared at it for the longest time her heart pounding, she was scared of opening it, what if …
-“Get a hold of yourself Leah, you won´t change what it says just by looking at it, and you won´t know what it says unless you open it”- she scolded herself mentally as she reluctantly stretched her arm to get a hold of it –“Leah, stop shaking, breathe and for the love of God open it.”- She had to command herself to open the letter after she froze holding it for a couple of minutes.
She closed her eyes as she sighed and opened the letter at last, as she read I she wasn´t surprised at all at Loki´s confession about doubting to take her letter in the first place, but she was surprised by the formal tone he used to continue –“Dammit Loki, I´m not one of your diplomatic missions.-she thought annoyed though it lasted short as she started reading Loki´s recollection of her … she didn´t even wanted to give it a name, it was still too fresh on her memory and still felt scared thinking about it.
As she kept reading her expression jumped from swooned to sad and angry depending which part she was reading. She blushed about his reference of the Princess Bride, he had seen her sleeping with Tony, it didn´t matter what he wrote, she knew he was jealous.
She growled in frustration as she clenched her fists around the letter looking at the ceiling –What was I thinking? – She motioned herself –I shouldn´t had let Tony talk me into this.- She whispered between clenched teeth, she stayed still for a couple of minutes with a frown on her face until suddenly she started giggling which grow into full laughter. When she finally finished laughing she dried the tears that had rolled from her eyes and pulled a writing pad and some blank paper sheets from a drawer in the night table.
-Nice try Loki, just enough truth to make me buy it, but you are becoming careless, why would you practically admit being jealous if you really had no hope for us.
Didn´t you thought I was paying attention to all of your stories? The art of giving everyone what they think they want, didn´t you define politics that way? Well baby, I´ve been living with 5 of the most wanted bachelors in the world, not to mention handsome, interesting, preety much capable of taking care of me and our baby, any woman´s dream … and one of them is filthy rich, better make that two, I´m quite sure Thor could pile up quite a considerable amount as an asgardian prince, are you following me? All heroes and through all these months the only man I´m interested is you.
Do you think that´s gonna change because you are asking me too? Really? We were together for how long? Half a year perhaps? Don´t you know me? Do you ever remember me changing my mind just because?
I´ll agree with you, at this moment IO don´t see a way for us to be together, but that doesn´t mean that we´ll never find one.
All I know for sure is that you can´t let me go any more than I can, if not why the roses?
If there was a moment I should´ve stop loving you it was the night you sent me back after you promised me you wouldn´t, if that didn´t made me hate you and look comfort somewhere else, what will?
So, please if you write me back, don´t ask me again to forget you, I don´t know how to do that. And more important I don´t want to.
I´m done begging, you´ll do what you want to do as always, I was a fool to think otherwise.
If you find a way to be present at your daughter´s birth you´ll be here, I want to believe that. If you can´t I´ll still believe it was because you couldn´t find a way.
I know, I spoiled your plan, and I´m not sorry at all –
She stopped for a moment uncertain there was anything else to say, why is it so cold? She was too concentrated on the letter she hadn´t noticed she was shivering, suddenly a voice made her jump, she had been too distracted to notice Bruce and Thor entering the room.
-Sorry, we didn´t meant to scare you.-Bruce apologized –You were awfully concentrated, what are you doing?-
-Nothing, just writing.-Leah said reluctant to tell them exactly what was she writing –Could you adjust the room temperature? I´m freezing.- She said mainly because she wanted to change the subject and secondly because she really was cold.
-The temperature in this rooms is fixed, you shouldn´t be cold.-Bruce tolod her worryingly as he touched her forehead with the back of his hand. –Jarvis what´s Leah body temperature?-
-38°C Dr. Banner- The A.I. informed.
-and you didn´t thought it was worth reporting because …-Bruce asked more intrigued than annoyed.
-The value for a fever assessment is set to 38.3°C Dr. Banner, according to this Mrs. Leah temperature isn´t within the right parameters to make a report.-Jarvis responded.
-Ok Jarvis, change the parameters to 37.5°C and alert me next time.- Bruce told Jarvis, there was no point arguing over it, he should´ve thought of reviewing the parameters for medical alert when Leah was interned in the medical ward.
-Thor, help me get Leah´s bed to the lab, I need to run some tests.-Bruce asked Thor
-Hey, what are you doing?-Tony entered the room followed by Steve
-Leah is 38°C, we need to get her to the lab and figure out what´s provoking it.-Bruce informed them.
Leah tried to place her writing pad and paper sheets on the night table before they moved her but she failed to do so and everything just fell to the floor.
-Tony!-She called him as she looked to the mess on the floor trying to sound less desperate than she was –My papers, could you …?-
-I´m on it.-Tony answered her realizing why she had asked him.
-I´ll pick them up.-Thor said while starting to pick up the scattered papers.
-Steve, will you give me a hand?-Bruce asked impatiently.
-Sure Doc.-Steve answered as he helped Bruce pull the hospital bed through the door.
-Oh god! Please don´t let Thor look at the letters!-Leah pleaded mentally, but this time she was out of luck as Thor recognized Loki´s handwriting in one of the paper sheets he had just picked up.
-This is Loki´s handwriting. – He sharply told Tony as he showed him the paper sheet in his hand.
-Um, well, yes.-Tony agreed, there was mo pint on denying the obvious.
-You knew about this?-Thor asked confused.
-Well, yes.-Tony nodded as he scratched his head –Kind of, I knew she wrote him a letter, I didn´t knew he had written her back.-He said as he picked a sheet with Leah´s handwriting –And by the looks of it he pissed her off.-
-I don´t see why.-Thor said skimming through Loki´s letter.
-Really? Let me take a look.-Tony exclaimed surprised.
-I don´t think we should be reading any of these.-Thor suddenly realized.
-Too late Thor, she´s already going to pissed at me for not avoiding you from finding out, I´d rather know why I´m going to be yelled at.-Tony reasoned as he kept reading Leah´s letter.
-I suppose.-Thor said doubtfully –Maybe we should read them just to make sure Loki isn´t up to something.-He added as he searched for the first part of Loki´s letter.
Both of them looked concentrated and concern as they kept reading although for a moment Tony bursted laughing –I guess she´s referring to me.-Thor looked at him puzzled –Oh, never mind, you´ll understand when you read it.-
Tony finished reading Leah´s letter first and asked Thor for the first part of Loki’s letter as he gave him Leah´s. Once they both finished reading both letters Tony exclaimed –No wonder she´s all snarky and belligerent on her letter.-
-I still don´t see why, although Loki’s doing completely out of character, he´s just trying to do the honorable thing for her.-Thor answered.
-That it is the honorable thing doesn´t make it the right thing.-Tony replied, as he looked Thor´s confused expression he added in disbelief –Really? It must be an asgardian thing. – He sighed as he proceeded to explain what he had meant.-She doesn´t wants him to do the honorable thing Thor, she wants him to act according to his feelings for her.-
-So, are you suggesting they run off together?-Thor both asked confused and irritated.
-No, that´s not what I´m saying at all Thor, let me explain this …-Tony was interrupted by Bruce´s voice.
-Tony I need you in the lab ASAP, and bring the vita radiation device with you.-Bruce´s voice sounded agitated.
-On my way!-Tony answered concerned at Bruce’s request, that only could mean a thing.-We´ll finish this later big guy! – He said to Thor as he turned to run towards his lab.
Thor ran behind him, something was wrong, Banner´s urgent tone told him so.
When Bruce and Steve got Leah into the medical lab she asked him nervously –Bruce, what’s wrong?-
-I´m not sure, fever is an indicator of something going on, mainly an infection. I need to make some tests to know for sure.-He answered as he took a blood sample.
-Ok.-Leah acknowledge, she´d have to wait until he told her something else.
Bruce placed her blood sample inside an electronic microscope and pulled a virtual screen to visualize it. –That makes no sense.-He said mainly to himself.
-What makes no sense Doc?-Steve asked intrigued
-I don´t see a virus or a bacteria that´s setting this chain reaction, it´s almost as the white blood cells are fighting amongst themselves.-He explained while examining the screen.
-Bruce … I´m not feeling so good.-Leah said to him suddenly, pain was reflected on hr face.
-Leah, what´s wrong?-Brue asked concerned as he rushed to her side.
-I … everything hurts … it started mild but now it´s growing.-Leah told him scared.
-Dammit! Leah, does it feels like hundreds of small needles pinching you?-Steve asked agitated.
-Yes, but how you know?- Leah answered intrigued.
-There´s no time to explain! Doc, can you safely sedate her … and the baby?-Steve asked in a hurry
-Mm, yes, but why?-Bruce asked as he prepared the sedative
There´s no time to explain, just do it! Trust me. –Steve answered, he started to sound really alarmed.
-Ow!-Leah complained, the pain was growing, when Bruce approached her with the sedative she pleaded –No, wait! Explain to me what´s happening!- without any warning Bruce stuck the needle into her arm, the sedative made effect almost instantly as she faded away Leah asked in half voice –Why Steve looks so scared?-
-Now. Will you explain to me why I just did that?-Bruce asked Steve
-You read my file, what does it says about the actual transformation.- Steve asked in return
-That it was painful …-Bruce suddenly realized what had just happened.
-Try excruciating painful.- Steve confessed –I still don´t understand why it took her so long to react to the serum in my blood.-
-Probably because she wasn´t healthy when we administer it to her.-Bruce started piecing everything together in his mind.-The cells needed to be repaired first, once they got healthy enough the transformation triggered, but you really think the sedation was necessary?-
-I really think so, in my case everything was done in a matter of minutes, for what we´ve seen I highly doubt that´s her case.-Steve answered preoccupied.
-Jarvis, do you have a register about when Leah´s temperature started to raise?-Bruce pondered as he asked.
-Around yesterday at 22:49.-Jarvis replied.
-It seems you could be right, it might take her hours or even days to complete the transformation, and she would be in pain through it all, am I right?-Bruce asked
-If it´s anything like mine, yes, she will.-Steve agreed.
Suddenly an alarm went off.-Dr. Banner your patient is having a convulsion.-Jarvis informed
As they ran to her bed Bruce called for Tony in the comlink.
-What´s going on? – asked alarmed at the scene unfolding, both Bruce and Steve were holding Leah as she convulse trying to stop her from being hurt.
-The serum has finally activated a transformation.-Bruce answered him –she´s having a convulsive seizure.-
-I can see that.-Tony exclaimed –What do you want me to do?-
-It´s not stopping, you need to give her a carbamazepine shot.-Bruce informed him.
Tony quickly located the medicine Bruce asked for and gave her a shot. The convulsion stopped for everyone´s relief.
-What caused the seizure?-Tony asked concerned
-I´m not sure, Jarvis pull up a scan of Leah´s brain activity and show it in the screen along with her blood sample.-Bruce ordered
-Right away Doctor.-The A.I. replied and soon both images appeared on screen.
-Shit!-Bruce exclaimed – It looks like a fucking Christmas tree, everything is lighting on, everything is being re-written.-then he turned as he told Steve –That explains the needles sensation you remember.
-What of her baby?-Steve asked worryingly, he couldn´t help to feel guilty.
-Pull up a scan of the baby´s vitals, brain activity, blood flow and temperature Jarvis.-Bruce ordered, as he analyzed them he sighed with relief.-She´s experiencing a transformation too, I don´t know if because she´s too young and still developing or if it is because her father isn´t human but something is protecting her from the side effects Leah is experiencing. For her it seems it´s only making small adjustments in her DNA strands. Unfortunately Leah isn´t that lucky, we´ll have to monitor her vitals closely. I´m worried about her temperature, if it raises another degree will have to find a way to cool her down. For now we need to stabilize her transformation, we have to irradiate her with the vita radiation now.-He ended looking at Tony.
-All right, are you sure the radiation is harmless to the rest of us?.-Tony asked worried.
-Yes, I´m sure.-Bruce informed him.
Suddenly a bright light flooded the room.
-I said I was sure, but either way you should´ve warned you were going to do that.-Bruce scolded him.
-You said now.-Tony replied shrugging his shoulders.
-Never mind.-Bruce sighed annoyed.
-Now that that is settled, I´m guessing you´re taking the first watch Bruce? – Tony asked him.
-Yes I am, I want to gather more information, I´ll run a few more tests and then we can get her back to her room, she´ll be more comfortable there.-
-I´ll stay with you if you don´t mind Doc.-Steve volunteered.
-It´s fine by me Steve, I also want to run some tests on you, I want to see if I can find a comparison point between the both of you.-Bruce answered.
-I´ll relieve you in 3 hours then?-Tony asked in earnest
-Make it 4.-Bruce answered back.
-If you insist.-Tony replied. – See you in 4 then.- as he ended he motioned Thor who has stayed still and quiet through all the commotion-Come with me Thor, we have an unfinished business.-
As Thor didn´t move Tony came back for him. –They´ll take care of her, you can be with me in the next watch if you want. For now we have to leave them work.- Tony insisted.
All right.-Thor agreed reluctantly.
-Now where were we?-Tony suddenly told him while they were walking down the corridor.-Oh yes! I´m not saying they should run away together. – He hated leaving a conversation unfinished and there was nothing else they could do but wait. –She just wants to know if he´s going to keep trying to find a way, she´s willing to wait for him, but she needs to know if he´ll do the same. What I´m trying to say is that she doesn´t want him to do the honorable thing by giving her up, she wants him to do the right thing, to fight to keep her. She´s really not giving up, she want to know if Loki will do the same.-
-That´s … very profound. – Thor answered surprised.
-I can be profound if I want to, don´t be so surprised.-Tony answered offended.-It´s all in her letter, you just have to read between the lines.-Then he added with a smirk –The advantages of being a playboy is that you meet so many women you end up understanding them better than most.-