Author's Note: Final warning - SPOILERS AHEAD!
"Are you all right?"
The sudden comment from over her shoulder should have startled Wanda, but she'd grown so accustomed to his visits back at the penthouse, and was so bloody relieved to hear his voice that she didn't so much as twitch.
She glanced over her shoulder, not daring to make a sound for fear that the guards would overhear. She was pretty sure that visitors were not allowed.
Vision stood on the far side of the cell, his left shoulder still partially translucent from where he'd phased through the wall.
"Miss Wanda?" he prompted softly when she did not answer, and she had to look away as she felt tears sting behind her eyes.
He was here. He was actually here, out in the middle of the ocean, checking in on her. It was almost too much to believe.
"Please speak to me," Vision asked, moving to kneel beside the padded shelf that served as her bed. "Are you okay?"
"I've been better," she admitted, unable to meet his gaze, "but I have also been worse. It is...unfortunate but not unbearable."
Wanda blinked hard to clear the glassiness from her vision, her gaze following the corner of the cell up to where a tiny camera had been mounted on the wall.
"What about the guards? Will they not be upset that you are here?" she asked.
"I...may have frozen their video feed of your cell."
She let out a breathy laugh, shaking her head.
"Picking up tricks from Tony?"
"I try to avoid the bad habits, but a few slip beneath the radar. What have they wrapped you in?"
"They call it a straight jacket. It is supposed to keep me from moving around," she shrugged as best she could. "Mostly to keep me from using my hands."
"And what is this?" he asked, reaching to trail his finger in a feather-light brush over the band that encircled her neck.
"That is a shock collar. In case I try escaping, or start to make a fuss."
"Like...the ones that the television sometimes displays for rowdy dogs?"
His voice was all innocence, and Wanda could not help the bitter smile that crossed her face as she answered.
"I believe it is the same concept, only far more powerful. It is like having a taser pressed to my throat. It is enough to put me on the ground."
"So it hurts you?"
"A bit," she shrugged, tucking her knees up closer to her chest and wishing she could wrap her arms around them. "If I do not do anything sudden, they do not press it. They usually give me one warning before using the full power. Barton yelled at them the first time when they did not."
"Is that where you got this?" Vision asked, brushing a long strand of hair away from her face so he could better see her throbbing temple. She had not seen the results for herself, as there were no mirrors and the guards did not like when she approached the metal bars across the front of her cell, but the Shrinking Man in the cell next to her had said that it looked bruised.
"I believe that was from Rhody," she shrugged, but then frowned. "How is he...?"
"Better. He is stable, and looks to recover. Although...there have been complications."
"Complications?" she prompted, feeling sick. What had they done?
"The diagnosis is not clear as of yet. Most likely paralysis. His legs."
Wanda looked down, worrying her lip between her teeth. She had only been strapped into this damn jacket for a dozen hours or so, and even losing that little bit of freedom made her feel so utterly helpless that she felt sick with unease. She could not even imagine having to live without the ability to move her legs ever again.
She let out a soft huff, flinching.
This was all their fault. If they had not fought one another...
"I am fine," she replied on reflex. "...Just relieved to know that he is alive."
Relieved that she did not have to add his name to the list of deaths they were responsible for. The list of people that she'd helped kill in the name of justice.
"You seem upset," Vision said gently, shifting to sit at her side.
She let out a shuddering breath, glancing up at the ceiling to keep the liquid that was rapidly pooling in her eyes from spilling over.
"It has been a long day. And I am not used to being treated like a violent criminal."
"I'm sorry," Vision murmured. "If there is anything that I can-"
"There is nothing you can do for me. I chose my path knowing this was the result, and you will only find yourself in the same place if you try to help me." She shook her head, glancing up into his pained expression and dragging her composure back together as best she could. "I will be fine as I am."
"Then I will keep you company for a while. If you would like that," he added, more quickly.
Unable to trust her voice enough to speak, Wanda nodded, scooting closer to him as best she could and tucking her head into the crook of his neck as he wrapped an arm about her shoulders. Vision ran a gentle hand through her hair, tucking a loose strand back behind her ear and murmuring "it will be all right."
Wanda let out a shaky breath as he tucked himself close, curling his body around her protectively, and for the first time in hours she let herself relax.
Despite having the others in cells barely a few feet away, she had felt completely alone in her little prison, and having someone actually there was a blessing that she was eternally grateful for.
"Hopefully you will not be here for much longer," Vision soothed. "As soon as this is all cleared up, you can come back to the penthouse."
Wanda nodded, closing her eyes, and pressed herself closer to the artificial warmth of his body. She would love to do nothing else, but she doubted that she was going to be allowed freedom anytime soon.
"Hey! What's going on in here!"
Wanda and Vision both jerked upright at the shout, and Wanda flinched as she felt the warning shock send an agonizing pulse of electricity to her throat where the metal prongs dug into her skin.
"Go!" she hissed, and Vision sank back through the wall as the guard came into view. It took a long second to drag her gaze from where Vision had disappeared, meeting the furious glare of one of the guards as he came to a stop outside of her cell.
"Have you been messing with the cameras, witch?" the guard demanded.
Her eyes widening, Wanda shook her head hard as she heard the others stirring in the cells around her. Not good. Not good, not good, not good...
The guard raised his hand, the shock collar remote in his grip, and she flinched back as she waited for him to press it.
"Who have you been talking to in here?"
Her blood ran cold. The guards had heard the two of them speaking, and for a long few seconds Wanda could do nothing but stare at the remote in apprehension as she scrambled for an answer. How much had they overheard?
She could hear Barton and Sam shouting at the guard to leave her be, and that she was just a kid, but the guard's attention was on her and didn't so much as waver.
"The voices in my head," she murmured at length. "They speak to me and I reply. There is no one here but me."
She watched the guard's thumb circling the button on the remote, tense with distrust as she waited to see whether or not he would believe her. The man tilted his head, considering, and then slowly lowered the remote to his side.
"Very well, witch. I will take your word on it. This time."
Wanda let out a breath, her muscles going slack with relief as she let her head rest against her knees. He had bought it.
She heard the guard take a step back, and glanced up in time to see him raise the remote.
"But don't you even think about causing any trouble!"
With that he pressed the button and Wanda screamed in agony.