Fighting for Freedom

It's day two of my adventure to America. Or rather, it's day two of my imprisonment in some unknown location. I haven't been taken anyway all morning, but that's alright. Albeit boring though. Nothing better than sitting in a plain cell for several hours all alone. Not.

But my stomach is telling me it's lunch time, and no food has arrived yet. I would climb out the hole I made yesterday, but they replaced the gap with a plastic screen. So, there won't be any more of my angry metal bending to take that away. I mean, I could melt it with fire-bending. That is if I want to send hours standing with my hand against it, which I don't. But does anyone?

Shuffling to my feet, I move over to the door, knocking on the plastic window. "Hey! You guys gonna feed me, or what?"

Nobody comes, and nobody replies. I bang on the door a dozen more times, slamming my fists into wood. My knuckles redden; tiny pinpricks of blood tumble between the ridges of my knuckles, staining the white door red. I let out a scream, and pummel the door. But nobody comes. They let me shriek and batter my hands red.

Defeated and bleeding, I lean against the door. I'm starving, I'm tired, and I'm bored. I want something to eat, something to do, somewhere to go. I want anything but here. There's nothing I can do, though, nothing at all. I'm a prisoner here; trapped like canary in a cage. Captivity doesn't suit me.

I don't know how long I sit there, before it occurs to me – wood! The door is made of wood. That's much easier to burn than plastic. The trick is doing it without people knowing, and getting the fire hot enough to burn it quickly. Think, Ava, think!

There has to be CCTV cameras in here. They have to watching my every move. It's a secret 'government' organisation, of course they're watching. Do I find the camera, or just do it? They'll know anyways; when they see the scorched remains, and burn streaks, they'll know it was me. Learn from that.

Rubbing my hands together, I take a deep breathe, concentrating on my flames. Sparks coat my fingertips, and a small flame appears in both palms. Focusing on the flames, I build them higher, stoking them with my anger. Turning to the door, I slam both hands into the wood. The door fires up quickly, smoking hot. Slowly but surely, my hands burn through to the other side. The wood flickers, and soon, a hole big enough for me to crawl through appears. I wiggle through, collapsing on the tiles outside.

My clothes are covered in soot and ashes. But there's no time for that now; I've got to get out. Letting my flames die from my hands, I sprint up the corridor, hoping to find an exit. Anyone who sees me jumps back in alarm, and runs off somewhere. So far, so good. No trouble yet, but that's sure to change.

I've been running for a good ten minutes, but still no exit in sight. It's not like there's going to be a big arrow saying 'exit for escapees here!'. I can hope though, right? But I'm quickly running out of options. I can't keep running forever, and I'm going to run into someone who fights back sooner or later. I could be running in circles for all I know. I have to get out.

The next corner I turn, I run slap-bang into a young woman's back. She turns around, red tendrils coating her finger tips. She looks at the soot coating me, and the cautious look in my eyes. Her eye light up with realisation, and she shouts into an ear piece:

"I have found the missing civilian. She is near the training area." Her voice is accented strangely; I can't decide where it's from. Someone must reply, as she nods slightly, a look of determination coating her face.

I take a step backwards. She raises her hands, a ball of buzzing red energy between them. I cast around for options, trying to come up with a solution. She throws the ball at me, and I duck. The energy hisses over my head. Oh, shit. I'm in trouble now.

Flaming my own hands up, I back away. Red doesn't back down, and slams a blast of energy into my side. I cry out in pain, feeling the sting of her power. My fiery palms flicker and die. I turn and run, pushing through the nearest set of doors.

Once inside, I notice I'm in a gym, complete with swimming pool. Brilliant – water! I rush towards the pool as Red enters, with her jaw set. Sticking my hands over the water, I pull up a chunk, and form a ring around myself. Taking up a stance, I face my opponent. Red fires a blast at me, and I raise my hands up. The water forms a shield in front of me, absorbing the blast. I strike back, flinging out an arm to cover her feet in water. It freezes into ice, sticking her to the ground. But she doesn't give up. Red fires another blast at me. It lifts me into the air. With a flick of her wrist, I'm flung into the pool.

I resurface, spitting water from my lungs. Swimming over to the side, I clamber out. But Red has freed herself since then. She looks angry, but so am I. I didn't ask for any of this, and I just want to leave. I'm not asking for the world.

My opponent forms a stance, ready to strike. I mirror her, raising up my watery ring once more. But I don't notice the other woman moving in from another door. I don't notice her lift a stun gun. I don't notice her take aim. But I do notice the sting, as the electricity course through me.

"I didn't see that coming." I have time for a few words, before darkness coats my vision. The world turns black, and I am gone again.

When I awake this time, I'm tied to a chair once more. But instead that interrogation room, I'm in what looks more like a conference room. There's a large, wooden table in the centre of the room; windows overlooking an expanse of grass; and most of the chairs are filled with people. People who don't look too pleased. At all.

I gulp, feeling the weight of their gaze. Almost everyone is a stranger, and yet vaguely familiar. I can't place them, but I feel like I know them from somewhere. But how? How could I possibly know them? This is my first trip to America for Pete's sake. It's going to bug me now; if I don't figure it out, it's going to annoy me so much.

A blond guy at the head of the table speaks first. "So, you have been here for less than two whole days, and you already try to escape. Why?"

"Um … "I wiggle in my bonds. "I was, uh, kidnapped? I haven't been feed yet? I just wanted out?" I raise an eyebrow at the group. "Is there any wonder why? You can't just kidnap people, and not even before to feed them." As if to emphasise the point, my stomach gives a loud rumble. I look down to my torso, and then back up to them as if to say 'see what I mean?'.

"We can, especially if they exhibit a threat to the public." A red-headed woman speaks next; a slight curl of disgust flickers over her face. "You are such a possible threat. Enhanced, or super-powered individuals, such as yourself, don't usually show their powers publicly without a reason."

"Ok … "Confusion clouds my face, "but why does that apply to me? Where I come from, everyone can control at least one element. It's not my fault nobody told me it was different here." I would cross my arms, but the handcuffs are kind of a hindrance to that.

"And where are you from?" A hint of a condescending tone enters her voice.

"England. Like I said in that stupid interrogation. Or didn't you guys listen to that?"

"We did. You might have been a terrible liar, and changed your answer. It's always best to check." Oh, now the red-head is sounding smug. Ugh! I want out of here.

"Well, that's just so darn clever of you. Am I going back to my cell now?" There's a gasp from a few members of the group. What's their deal? Don't they like sarcasm here? Or does red hair here have a problem with it?

The blond from the start speaks up again. "That's enough. You're here to answer our questions, and that'll go on as long as it needs to."

"Have fun with that. Maybe I just won't talk."

"Maybe we'll just make you." The red-head gives a sly grin. "Besides, we don't need you to. Not with our Scarlet Witch." She points to the girl with the red energy from earlier.

"S-scarlet W-witch?!" I ask, voice quivering.

"Yes. What's the problem with that?"

"I just – she's not – "I struggle to find the right words, "she's a movie character. She isn't real."

"I am real. I would know." The girl – Scarlet Witch – speaks up, her voice slightly rough sounding. "I am her."

"No." I shake my head, and set my jaw. "You can't be. That would make you guys the – "

"The Avengers, yes." Scarlet Witch nods. "Now you see why it is our business in you."

"I-I-I … But you can't … It … It's n-not possible." I stutter, looking at each face in turn. "N-no. You are a movie, and this is some fucked-up dream. I'll wake up, and I'll be home."

"It is no dream. This is real."

"Nope." I say, popping the 'p'. "No, no, it isn't. That's exactly what someone would say to convince me it's a dream!" I wiggle around in my bonds, shuffling the chair closer. "I'm gonna wake up, and I'll be safe at home. None of this will have happened and I'll be ok. It'll normal, and safe, and not movie world. And everyone will have their powers, and I won't have been kidnapped and – "I pause to breathe; my chest heaves and I cough.

Scarlet Witch flicks a hand at me, and red tendrils hit my forehead. The conference room shifts and disappears. A lake appears, with a sandy beach, and a creeping sunrise. On that beach stands the Witch. I start towards her, my green eyes flashing.

"What did you do?! What is this?!" I yell at her, marching straight up to her face.

She takes a step back, but stands tall. "We are in a dreamscape, caused by your mind. This is somewhere familiar, yes?"

"I – yeah, it is." My voice falters as I take in my surroundings.

Only a few paces north is a track, leading to the compound gate. Inside the compound are many buildings, all part of the school. There is a town nearby, but we don't visit often. We don't want people to know about us, and exploit us. By 'us' I mean the ones who can control all four elements. People often want to control us; to use us for our extra abilities. So, our parents send us to the Elemental Powers School (E.P.S), a school that will train us and keep us safe. If someone makes a move a student, or figures out what they are, they are relocated. That happened to my best friend – Melanie Holme. I shiver, despite the warmth.

"Are you – alright?" My companion steps closer, concern etched over her face.

I nod. "Sorry. I just got caught up in memories, you know?" I shake my head, trying to clear my mind. "So, why are we here?"

"Oh." She looks a little taken back. "I thought you could do with some explanations. My name is Wanda Maximoff, or Scarlet Witch." I don't reply, so she keeps going. "I'm part of the new Avengers. We formed after U.L.T.R.O.N, but we're still training to be a team." Wanda pauses, looking uncertain. "This is the base; where we are now, physically."

"Ok. But – "I rub my temples slowly, "it's a lot to take in, and – how do I know you're telling the truth? You could be anyone, masquerading as someone else."

"We're not – trust me." She steps forward; her voice is level and confident. "We're the Avengers, you're the mystery factor here."

I lower my gaze, nibbling at a finger nail. "I didn't ask to come here. I don't how, and I don't know why. I just want to go home. Failing that, I want to start a new life here, without being locked in a cell."

Wanda looks stricken, but her expression hardens. "I have been in many cells. You can't blame us for being cautious. We don't know what you can do."

"Neither do I." I give a bitter laugh, gesturing to my surroundings. "Do you? Does anyone before they're put to the test?"

"I don't know." She flashes a quick glimpse of teeth. "But I do know that you are a risk. Ready to go back now?"

I nod my head, shifting on my feet. She waves a wrist, and we return to the physical world with a jolt. I bolt upright, tipping my chair backwards, and smacking into the floor. "Shoot. Can, um, someone help me up?" My cheeks flame, and I look away from the Avengers' faces. Yay, embarrassment strikes again.

Waving a hand, Wanda sets the chair up right with a few bursts of red energy. I smile at her in thanks. Maybe I'll have one ally here. At least she doesn't seem as standoffish as the rest of them. The others are taking quietly, shooting each other glances, and making vague gestures. They must come to an agreement somehow, as they sit back, looking more relaxed.

The blond at the head of the table – if these are the Avengers, that must be Captain America – stands up to address us. "We'll be training this one, to make sure her powers don't go out of control, and she doesn't cause a threat to the world's security." He turns to me. "If you cause any problems, and if you go rogue we will hunt you down. We won't risk the world for one person." The Captain faces the whole group again. "We'll move her into the Avengers' quarters, so we can keep an eye on her."

I shake my head at that statement. "Nope. No thanks, I'll stick with the cell."

"Why would you prefer a cell over an actual room?"

"Because – "I arch my eyebrows, "why would I want to spend time with the people who put me in a cell in the first place, huh? Riddle me that." I glare around at them.

My gaze hits that of the red-head's and I suddenly realise who she is. It's Black Widow. I talked back to Natasha freaking Romanoff. I am so dead. She's gonna kill me. I can't believe I was rude to her. To Black Widow!

She catches me staring, and tilts her head at me. "What is it?"

"Oh …" Oh god, I need help. "I-I just, um, r-realised who you are." My voice shakes, and I drop my gaze to the flower. "P-p-please don't k-kill me! I didn't know – you're Black Widow!"

To my surprise, several people, including Widow, laugh at me. I look up at them, startled. "What?!" I demand, voice quivering still.

"I'm not going to kill you." Widow laughs a little at my terrified expression. "But don't talk that to me again."

Shaking and worried, I nod my head gratefully. Oh, thank my lucky stars, I'm saved! Still, I'd better walk nicely around her from now on. I bet she can hold a grudge for years, and strike back with the most horrible revenge.

"Anyways, it's not a question of not moving in." The Captain adds. "You'll move in this afternoon. But until then you'll stay under supervision in the training department." He nods to the guards. "Take her there, but untie her first."

The guards move forwards, cutting my bonds with a pair of wicked looking knives. I shake my arms out, stretching my aching limbs. My feet have cramped up; I've got pins and needles. Struggling to my feet, I try not to wince as I walk away. Needless to say, I don't succeed.

Thanks for reading guys! Hope you enjoy the chapter.

My exams are over! Yay! So I've loads of free time for writing now.

I own nothing but my OC.

Reviews are wonderful gifts for lovely readers.