Leah´s and Tony´s argument worried Steve; after some consideration he decided to try to talk to Tony again. It didn´t took him long to find him; he was in the communication room working busily while he ended his second bottle of vodka.
“Tony, what are you doing?” Steve asked worryingly eyeing the empty bottles.
“What does it looks like I´m doing? I´m working!” Tony spat annoyed.
“You know that´s not what I meant.” Steve told him sternly.
“As soon as Loki returns I´m out of here; I don´t want to leave any loose ends.” He replied dryly as he kept working in some wires.
“Tony, you don´t need to do that! I´m certain Leah will apologise to you about this morning. Just give her a chance; she´s having a bad day …” Steve tried to reassure Tony who just kept working as he wryly answered. “Well, I´m having a bad life. I don’t care.”
“Tony I know she hurt you, but you can´t do that. Think about how Leah will feel if you leave.” Steve kept trying to reason with him.
“I don´t know and I don´t care. She made it very clear. I´m done worrying about her.” He furiously glared at Steve.
“But Tony …” Steve started to say when Tony interrupted him.
“I don’t care Steve. Beat it! I´m working.” Tony growled.
Steve sighed disappointed and told Tony before he left. “Just make sure you won´t regret it later.”
“Regret it later? Regret it later!” Tony mumble between his teeth. “The only thing I regret is getting caught in this mess.”
Leah didn’t have a hard time looking for Tony either after her session with Andrew ended.
Tony had piled three empty bottles by the time she arrived to the communications room. As Leah walked in she looked nervously at the bottles. “Oh God! He´s really angry. Dammit Leah! You just couldn´t keep your mouth shut.”
She swallowed hard before frightfully calling his attention. “Tony?”
“So you finally came!” He spat slyly. “Save it! I don´t care.”
“But Tony, I’m sorry …” Leah nervously told him as she clutched her hands.
“I don’t care how sorry you are! I´m not forgiving you this time.” Tony yelled at her spitefully. “I´m done playing this game!”
Leah looked at him hurtfully and gingerly volunteered. “I know I deserve your anger; but please Tony listen to me.”
“Why on hell would I do that?” Tony spat enraged. “So you can tell me again how sorry you are until the next time you conveniently forget and do some stupid bullshit again. No, Leah; if the other´s put up with your crap that´s their problem; I´m done with you.”
“Tony please. I didn´t meant it. I just was so angry …” Leah pleaded anxiously.
“Why should I believe you?” Tony asked her wrathful.
“Because I’m telling you the truth!” Leah cried desperate.
“The truth?” Tony laughed wryly. “Like when you told us the truth about just wanting to take a stroll before you tried to escape? I should’ve learn my lesson then. No, I wouldn´t believe you even if you got Saint Rogers to vouch for you.”
“Please Tony, just give me a chance to explain.” She begged again; she was trying very hard not to cry. Even so, her eyes threatened to overflow with unshed tears.
“And for God´s sake don´t even start crying! The broken girl routine is getting old.” Tony harshly admonished her.
“But tony, please! Think of everything we´ve been through together …” Leah tried to appeal to Tony once more.
“I am.” Tony assure her. “I´m sick of your martyr routine too! Yes, Doom; you can rape me if you let Loki and my child go.” He mocked her merciless. “Who does that?” Tony ranted against her again.
“Tony!” Leah looked at him appalled. “Why …?”
“What?! Does the truth hurts?” Tony mocked her. “You can stop trying. As soon as Loki gets back I’m out of here. And then we won´t have to see each other ever again.”
Leah´s tears pour freely by now; she didn´t even though of defending herself against his accusations; she didn´t wanted to fight with him anymore. She bit her lower lip before gathering herself to tell him. “It doesn´t matter if you don’t believe me. I …am … sorry. You were the best friend I´ve ever had and I´m so sorry I hurt you. I … I will miss you!” Her voice broke; unable to stop the outpour of emotions she ran out of the room crying.
Tony just looked at her leave before resuming his work; after a couple of minutes the full realisation of what he had done settle in. As she stopped working he spat out loud. “Dammit Leah!” Next he rushed out to find her.
First he tried her room, next the interior garden; there was no sign of her in the nursery or the kitchen. He felt too guilty to ask the rest of the team to help him find her; suddenly he pass through one of the training rooms and thought he had heard her voice. As he peaked in he saw a shocking scene. Leah kept ranting against herself while she punched the sandbag placed in the back of the room with all her strength; sand was pouring out through a dozen holes. But what made him open his mouth horrified was the blood smeared all over the bag; the same blood that dripped down from Leah´s knuckles into her arms and clothes. After his initial shock Tony was able to make out Leah’s words between her sobs. “Stop doing everything wrong … stop being so stupid … stop failing every time … you´re doing it wrong … you´re doing it wrong … can´t you do anything right? The accident … your escape … Doom … Loki …. Tony … Thor … stop doing everything wrong … “ She kept repeating the same words over and over in the same cycle as she bawled her hear out completely unaware of Tony´s presence, venting all her anger in every single blow; she didn´t even acknowledge the pain in her bloody hands anymore. She kept playing everything in her mind again and again; she needed to get things right, she couldn´t afford to keep failing … she just couldn´t.
Tony was taken back by the heart-breaking scene; seeing all the pain reflected on Leah´s face made his heart cringe. Swiftly he walked behind her and in one swift move embraced her while pulling her away from the punching bag.
“Leah stop! Please … stop.” He pleaded with tears in his eyes.
Leah looked back at him astonished before wailing. “Tony, I’m sorry! I´ll get things right, I promise. I promise … I won’t screw up anymore. Please, I’m sorry.” She kept crying with her head bowed down. “I´m sorry, I’m sorry!” She was sniffling so hard she was shaking.
“I know, I know, i´m sorry. I shouldn´t have said those things to you. Please stop crying.” He held her tight against his chest leaning his head into hers. For a couple of minutes they didn’t said a word comforted by each other´s presence. It was Leah who broke the silence as she leaned her head to look at his face; with great effort she managed to tell him before starting to sob again. “You are all my family.”
Tony´s eyes watered again after hearing her confession; he turned her to face him so he could embrace her, resting her head in his chest he told her. “And you are ours.”
“I´m sorry.” She said once more.
“Shhh, it´s all right. It´s al right.” He rocked her against his chest for a while until she stopped crying. Suddenly he sighed as he told her in a joking tone. “If I didn’t know better I would swear we are related. We sure know how to make a mess.”
Leah couldn´t help to laugh. She looked up at him as she answered. “Yes, we do.”
“Let me take a look at your hands.” He told her next trying to hide the concern in his voice.
Leah felt like a child about to get a scolding and shyly lift her hands for him to see with a worried expression in her face she realised how bad they look.
Tony sighed disapprovingly as she examined them. “We are going to need Bruce to take a look at this.”
“But …” Leah pouted with a pleading expression in her face.
“Sorry love; not this time. We need a doctor.” Tony told her firmly.
When they found Bruce Tony approached him; Leah stood nervously behind him hiding her hands which Tony had provisionally bandaged with a piece of his own shirt.
“Bruce, before you start nagging us … we know; we are a couple of fools, but …” He pulled Leah in front of him showing Bruce her injured hands. “We need you to take a look at these.”
“So Andrew, what do you think?” Bruce asked him as they watched through the glass at Leah and Tony chatting animatedly.
Andrew stared at the pair teasingly joking with each other. “She´s going to be all right Bruce. I think we can relax now.”
“But Andrew; she just managed to break four metacarpals not to mention the damage she inflicted on her knuckles. Without the nanobots it will take her a week or more to heal …”
“Bruce …” Andrew interrupted all the time keeping his eyes on Leah and tony. “What do you see?”
Bruce looked up. “They are fooling around.” He finally suggested.
“Yes.” Andrew smiled. “When was the last time you saw her that relaxed?”
Bruce considered his answer for a while before admitting. “When her child was born.”
“So, you would say she looks happy, am I right?” Andrew asked him.
“I guess so.” Bruce reluctantly volunteered.
“Whatever happened it looks like it might have been worth a couple of broken bones.” Andrew suggested kindly.
Bruce looked at them attentively before acknowledging “Maybe … are you going to talk to her?”
“I you allow it I would like to.” Andrew admitted.
Meanwhile inside the room Tony teased Leah about her new splints. “Even with your healing factor you won´t be able to get rid of them before Loki arrives. I would hate to be you when he sees them.”
Leah pouted, she knew she wouldn´t heard the end of it if she had to explain o Loki how she managed to break two fingers of each hand. “You´re supposed to cheer me up, not get me down. What kind of friend are you?”
“The one that puts up with you.” Tony jokingly answered. “And …baby. You´re going to get it!” He nodded his head negatively faking a concerned look.
Leah pouted even more. “That´s not fair. It isn´t all my fault!”
“You´re the one that decided to knock the hell of the punching bag … so it is your fault.” Tony told her with irony.
Leah whined. “Can you make some nanobots to fix my bones? Please Tony…”
“I don’t know.” Tony told her. “What´s in it for me?”
“My eternal gratitude.” Leah suggested hopefully.
“Mmm… I don´t know.” Tony kept teasing her.
“Come on Tony, you´re so smart … I´m sure you could make some with your eyes closed.” Leah compliment him trying to get him to help her.
“Maybe if you compliment my skills again.” Tony joked.
Leah sighed amused. “All right…. Tony …”
Tony hurried to suggest her. “Please help me …”
“Please help me …” Leah repeated.
“Cause you are the only one smart enough.” Tony continued.
“Cause you are the only one smart enough.” Leah repeated.
“And also handsome and great …” Tony added.
Leah whined annoyed. “Tony! Are you going to help me or not?”
“I´ll do my best girl” He finally agreed. “But remember I can´t make you any promises; most of my equipment is in the tower.”
“Thank you.” Leah smiled him with a smile.
They were just changing the subject when Andrew walked in.
Leah´s first thought was “I´m screwed.”
“Tony, could you give Leah and me a minute?” He nicely asked.
Tony looked at Leah´s guilty expression and considered it for a while before acceding.
“I´m out of the rescue team.” Leah plainly volunteered before Andrew said a word.
“Actually not, you´re still in.” Andrew told her with a smile. “Strictly off field till you are healed, but you can still lead the team.”
“But… why? “Leah asked intrigued before adding “I broke my hands.”
“Yes, you did. But I have a feeling you will manage one way or the other. “Andrew volunteered.
Leah expression changed to a thankful one. “I … thank you.” She hugged Andrew warmly.