Soo...I got this idea in the middle of PE while playing capture the flag, everybody versus everybody...and then this happened… *laughs nervously*. I hope it's not too bad, it jumps around a little, but the jist of it is that there are four teams of Avengers all playing capture the flag. The rules are simple: you get your flag stolen, you're out. To win, you need to get all the flags. Oh, and did I mention it's in the middle of the woods?
Disclaimer: I do not own the MCU, sadly.
Capture the Flag, Avengers Style
"Aw, come on!" Tony cries in outrage. "What do you mean we can't use our suits?"
Natasha smirks. "Too bad for you, Stark, because some of us don't need suits."
"Yeah, but-but-Wanda gets to use her powers!" Tony points out.
"Tony, calm down," Steve says patiently.
"Stop whining like a little kid and let us play the game," Bucky says, impatiently.
"You, too!" Tony says, pointing at Bucky. "The super-soldier should be on his own team!"
Bucky and Wanda smirk at each other.
"Why are you grinning at each other like you know something the rest of us don't?" Tony asks, suddenly very, very nervous.
"Nothing, nothing," Wanda says. "Are we going to play or not?"
Nick Fury grins at the twelve people assembled before him. "This will be most entertaining to watch," he declares. "And an excellent team-building activity for you people."
Tony groans. "Fine. Fine! Just give me my stupid flag and let's head to the training room."
Fury grins. "Oh, we're not doing this in the training room," he says sinisterly.
The lights in the room go out and the floor shifts.
"Wanda?" Clint asks. "A little light, please?"
Crimson swirls of magic spread out around the room, and combined with the light from Vision's mind stone and a penlight Nat had on her, there was enough light for the Avengers to see each other.
"I knew there was a reason he wanted us in a special room!" Nat declares. "Now we're flying to who knows where!"
Everyone looks around, expecting Fury to say something.
"He's gone!" Tony says, exasperated. "That son of a bitch is gone!"
"Language," Steve says. "Besides, how bad can this be?"
As it turns out, it can be very, very bad. The Avengers were dropped off individually with a flag. As soon as they stepped out of the apparently portable room, they were blindfolded, spun in a circle, and told not to take off the blindfold until they heard the whistle.
Bucky sits in a tree, having climbed it without needing to see. He's a super soldier, he doesn't need his sight. Well, he does, but he can use his other senses as well.
Bucky hears the whistle blow. Immediately he rips off his blindfold. When he sees a slight trail of crimson leading off in a certain direction, he smiles, and very carefully and very quietly sneaks off to find his new teammate.
Thor watches the Son of Wil and the Rhodes crash through the forest towards each other. Each wants the other's flag, and soon they're wrestling on the forest floor. By the end of the brawl, the Son of Wil reigns triumphant. What appears to be a flying platform appears overhead to collect the Rhodes. Son of Wil grins, having two flags now.
Thor springs down from the trees, landing just behind the Son of Wil. He snatches both flags from the man and stuffs them next to his own.
"Hey!" Son of Wil says indignantly. "That's-"
"Mine. Thank you, dear friend," Thor says. "Goodbye."
The flying platform reappears. Thor waves as a metal arm picks up a squirming Son of Wil. He turns to jump back into the tree to find a fist flying towards his face.
"Are you sure about this?" Steve whispers. "I mean, it seems kind of, well...mean, to team up on him."
Tony grins. "Dude, admit it. You've wanted to do this since day one."
Steve grins and nods sheepishly. "I've wanted to outsmart him since day one."
Tony grins. He and Steve sit crouched on the ground, hidden in some dry bushes. Steve shifts his weight to his other foot and leaves crinkle. The man standing some feet away from them in a low-dipping valley looks up at the sudden sound. The man's metal arm glints in the sunlight and his eyes pass right over Steve and Tony.
"Now," Tony whispers. "ATTACK!" he yells, jumping out of the bush, Steve close behind him. Bucky looks startled for a minute, then smiles.
"COUNTER ATTACK!" yells a voice behind him. Tony and Steve halt. Bucky grins menacingly.
Steve's eyes widen as he sees Wanda fly out of the bushes behind Bucky. He and Tony turn and scramble up the hill. Wanda's magic causes leaves and twigs to snap under their feet and the ground crumbles below them. Tony pushes Steve down, and Steve grabs Tony's ankles.
And they both fall down, towards the Winter Soldier and the Scarlet Witch.
Clint perches in the tree, waiting for his next victim. He already has Thor's, Sam's, and Rhodey's flags, having taken them from Thor moments after he took them from Sam. His ears twitch as he hears a strangled cry. "Attack!" A few seconds later, "Counter attack!" He recognizes the voices of Wanda, Tony, and Steve. Since Steve is there, Bucky is probably close by. But it wasn't near enough to Clint that he has to be worried. No, he is worried about those who hadn't been seen yet during the game. Nat, Vision, Pietro, and Bruce. He assumes both Vision and Pietro were near Wanda, keeping an eye on her. He isn't very concerned about Bruce. It was Nat he was worried about.
Clint is very worried about Nat. If she shows up, his only hope is to talk her into an alliance and pray she doesn't betray him.
Speaking of those who haven't been seen yet, Bruce appears into his line of vision. Clint sucks in a breath, waiting to see if Bruce will notice him. But he keeps up his steady pace, glancing around occasionally, heading in the direction of the yelling.
Clint lets his breath out. If he can get the rest of them to take out each other...well, then this would be all too easy.
Sam watches from the flying platform as Steve and Tony position themselves to attack Bucky.
"Don't do it," he warns, noticing Wanda hiding in the bushes behind Bucky. "Don't do it, Steve, it's a trap."
"Dude, they can't hear you," Rhodey says, still mad Sam beat him.
"They really can't," Thor says, who was still unhappy Clint outsmarted him. "But it is fun to watch them die." Sam chuckles as Wanda jumps out. Rhodey snaps a picture of the scene and zooms in on Tony and Steve's faces.
"Dude, that's hilarious," he says, going to post the picture.
"They're going to kill you," Sam says.
"Can't at the moment!" Rhodey hoots. All three men laugh as they watch Tony and Steve scramble up the ridge, only to be pulled back down where Bucky and Wanda are waiting.
"What the hell?!" Tony cries as Steve latches onto his ankle.
"No, no, no!" Steve says, keeping a tight hold of Tony's ankle. "I go down, you go down with me!"
"Sorry not sorry!" Tony says, kicking his shoe off into Steve's face. Tony makes it up the ridge.
"I'll never forget you!" he calls, then turns and sprints off.
"I hate you!" Steve yells, then sighs and turns back to see Bucky's face in his own.
"H-hey, Buck…" Steve says. "So, ah, can I join your alliance?"
"No," Wanda says immediately, standing some feet behind the men.
"Ah, well," Steve says. "Worth a shot."
He reaches up and snatches Bucky's flag. Bucky looks stunned for a moment. Then he breaks into a smile.
"Good one," he says. "Distract me with your stupid comments and then take me out. I'll have to remember that for next time."
"Next time?" Steve gulps.
"Next time," Bucky grins, patting his best friend's shoulder as the flying platform lifts him up. He waves to Wanda, who turns to glare at Steve.
"Oh, no," Steve says.
Pietro grins. His legs have gone stiff waiting for Clint to emerge from the tree, but it will be worth it. Then he'll have more flags, five in all, and only a few left to steal if as many people are out as he thinks.
Pietro grins because Clint is beginning to climb down the tree. He shifts into the starting position of a runner, making no noise as he moves. The slight disturbance in the air makes no noise, the runner poised to run is silent.
Pietro, faster than a bullet, shoots out of the brambles, nabs all four flags from Clint, and adds them to his collection. Five in all.
"Bet you didn't see that coming," he taunts Clint. Then, happily noting the surprise on the archer's face, Pietro turns and runs back into the forest.
Bruce Banner whirls around, hands above his head. In one hand he clutches his flag.
He drops his hands when he sees Tony. Tony grins.
"My previous alliance didn't work out so well," Tony says. "Would you like to form a new one?"
"With you?" Bruce asks. "How do I know you won't betray me?"
"Trust me," Tony informs him. "I have no desire to meet the big green giant today."
Bruce grins, but his eyes are uncertain. He certainly doesn't trust Tony during games like this. Tony had said his last alliance didn't work out so well, and Tony still has his flag.
Tony holds out his hand. "Do we have ourselves a deal?"
"Attention, remaining players!"
Fury's voice booms out of nowhere. Wanda and Steve freeze, poised around each other in a circling dance. Somewhere Pietro pauses in his running and find somewhere new to hide. Vision floats down silently to the ground in the trees a few yards away from Wanda and Steve. Natasha smiles to herself; soon she'll know how many opponents she has yet to take out. Bruce sighs and reluctantly shakes hands with Tony.
"The current players out are the following: Rhodey Rhodes, Sam Wilson, Thor Odinson, Bucky Barnes, and Clint Barton. Thank you, that will be all. Enjoy the game!"
There's a click, but not before they hear some hooting laughter coming from what must be Sam and Rhodey.
Wanda turns to Steve. Steve looks terrified.
But not of her.
Of something behind her.
Pietro pauses when he hears a scream. He knows that scream. That's his sister's scream.
Pietro runs, runs for his sister, his younger sister by twelve minutes. He runs faster than he's ever ran before, which is saying something, because his max speed is his running speed.
He runs, runs for his little sister. He smiles. He'll pull another Barton. He'll avenge his sister getting out.
Wanda nearly laughs. Her silly brother came running as soon as he heard her fake scream. As soon as she and Vision took out Steve, they hatched a plot to get Pietro out. Pietro stops three feet away from her. She immediately clutches her arms to her chest and starts shaking. This is the cue to Vision to start creeping up on her brother.
"Are you okay?" Pietro asks Wanda, reaching out.
"F-fine," Wanda says. "Fine. I-I'm fine."
"You're not fine," Pietro says, reaching out. "You still have your flags," he said, noticing the flags of her, Steve, and Bucky hanging by her side.
"So you're not out?" Pietro asks doubtfully. Wanda looks up and grins.
"Nope," she says. Vision, standing slightly behind Pietro, snatches the five flags Pietro has.
"Bet you didn't see that coming," Wanda teases as the metal arm of the flying platform lifts Pietro out of the air.
Natasha watches as Pietro is lifted out of the air some distance away, pinpointing the exact location of whoever took him out and now has at least two flags. She knows this will also draw other attackers to the scene. She thinks back in her head of who's left in the game. Tony and Bruce, she passed them a little while back but they didn't have any flags but their own. She'll wait until they've been taken out, then make her move.
Who else? Ah, yes. Wanda and Vision. Nat has no doubt that they've teamed up to take Pietro out. Knowing Wanda's competitive spirit, Vision will be out in a matter of minutes.
Nat creeps closer to the area Pietro was taken out. She'll wait until there is one other left. Then she'll make her move.
Wanda grins at Vision, adding the five other flags to his collection.
"What, you're not going to share them with me?" she pouts. Vision looks at her in surprise. She grins. She reaches out with her arm and all six of his flags jump into her hand, via her crimson tendrils of magic. Vision looks utterly betrayed as Wanda adds these six to her collection-she now has nine in all. Only three left. She smiles at Vision and waves slightly as he's lifted into the air.
Vision stares at the other seven assembled before him, all hooting with laughter.
"She got you good, man!" Clint says, wiping a tear from his eye. Pietro smiles. He's still mad Wanda and Vision teamed up against him. Bucky and Steve are leaning on each other for support. Sam and Rhodey are practically howling with laughter, and Thor is trying immensely hard to hold it in.
"I suppose she did get me good," Vision says vaguely. He turns back to the scene before him and his heart sinks. Tony and Bruce are hiding some ways away from Wanda and are gesturing wildly. Bruce gives Tony a good-natured shove and they're both exposed to the mercy of the Scarlet Witch.
Wanda silently counts the flags now attached to her belt. One, two, Bucky and Sam. Three, four, Pietro and Vision. Five, six, seven, eight, Clint, Thor, Sam, and Rhodey. Nine, herself. Only three left. Tony, Bruce, and Nat.
She hears frantic whispers and looks up. Someone is shoved in the clearing towards her. Tony. His shover follows closely behind. Bruce. She smiles slightly. Her almost-final victims.
Tony looked at her, terrified. Bruce didn't look much better. Wanda smiled devilishly at them.
"Lay down your flags and no one gets hurt," she says quietly, the smile never leaving her face.
"Now, now, Wanda, lets be reasonable…" Tony says cautiously, raising his hands. "There are two of us and one of you…"
"You know I could easily take both of you down," Wanda sneers.
"I bet you could," a quiet voice says behind her. "But you'll never get the chance." Wanda's eyes widen in surprise as all nine flags are tugged from her belt.
Nat smiles to herself. She'll make her move now. She steps forward as Wanda says "You know I could easily take both of you down."
Nat's grin widens as she thinks of a comeback before either Tony or Bruce.
"I bet you could," Nat tells Wanda. "But you'll never get the chance." Nat tugs all nine flags from Wanda's belt and quickly attaches them to her own. Nat has a plan-Nat always has a plan.
Wanda turns in surprise. "Well," she says. "If it can't be me, at least it's a fellow woman." Wanda sees the metal platform and doesn't bother to let it lift her up. She won't give them the pleasure of doing that. Using her magic, she levitates up to the platform where her friends are waiting.
"Good trick, sis," Pietro says, throwing his arm around her. Wanda smiles and turns to watch the game progress.
"Just us three," Nat smirks to the two men. They know they can't beat her. She's impossible to beat in situations like this. She catches Bruce's eye and they make a silent agreement.
"Tony," Nat purrs. Her change of tone is so different that Tony startles for a moment. "Would you mind just handing me your flag?"
Tony shakes his head cautiously.
"Too bad," Nat says. "Because I'm totally going to beat you. I'm a spy. I'm a good spy. I'm a great spy. I'm also stalling. See you later!"
Bruce nabs Tony's flag. Tony's mouth widens in surprise.
"Bloody hell!" he says to Bruce. "I thought we were teammates!"
"Alliances change, man," Bruce says. Tony's protests are lost to the wind as he's lifted onto the flying platform.
"So," Nat says to Bruce, taking a step closer. She puts on the most seductive voice she can, hoping to trick him into getting close enough to nabbing his flag. He's her last opponent. She has eleven flags, he has one. She can do this.
"So," Bruce replies, tilting his head slightly.
"Are you going to give me your flag, or do I have to take it by force?" Nat asks him.
"I'm not sure," Bruce says. This catches her by surprise. She was expecting a 'yes' or a 'no'. She takes a step closer.
"I would suggest the easy way," she says, taking the eleven flags off of her belt and preparing to add the final one. She takes another step closer. Bruce and Nat are now a foot apart.
Who will win?
The entire floating platform holds their breath, preparing to accept Bruce into the rank of losers. There's not way he could beat Nat, unless he did the one thing Bruce does best.
Bruce and Nat are now a foot apart.
Bruce smiles at Nat, and she smiles back. Neither know why.
Then Bruce lunges forward. Before Nat knows it, all twelve flags are in the hands of the Hulk.
"What?" she stammers. "How?" Bruce holds up the flags teasingly and grins at her as they're both lifted onto the flying platform.
The two final contestants are greeted with cheers from all around.
"Bet you didn't see that coming," Pietro, Clint, and Wanda call out in unison. Everyone has congratulations for Bruce, who somehow won. None of the Avengers were expecting that.
"Congratulations to Bruce Banner," Nick Fury booms out over the twelve loud voices. "Winner of the First Annual Avengers Free-For-All Capture the Flag."
"First annual?" Steve cries in outrage.
"You mean we gotta do that again?" Sam says, not missing a beat. Fury grins at the assembled crowd.
"See you next week!" he says.
That's all for now! I hope you enjoyed it! Was anyone expecting Bruce to win? I certainly wasn't, it just happened! If this gets a good enough response, I'll maybe write about the Second Annual Avengers Free-For-All Capture the Flag…so be sure to leave a review or a favorite, and follow if you want to see more! I'm already plotting the next game...see you all around Fanfic Land!