HOPE EVERYONE IS HAVING A GOOD HOLIDAY SEASON. THINGS AS ALWAYS ARE STRESSFUL IN MY WORLD SO I WAS HAPPY TO GET THIS CHAPTER OUT BEFORE THE NEW YEAR! I ENDED UP BREAKING MY FOOT AND ANKLE SO I'VE HAD A LITTLE MORE TIME TO WRITE AND EDIT. THANKS TO ALL WHO READ, REVIEW, OR FOLLOW! ALWAYS APPRCIATE ANY FORM OF SUPPORT. SOME ANSWERS AT THE END.

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Smoke blinded Clint as he made his way into the destroyed section of the lab. He had bypassed the two fighting robots, a clearly overwhelmed Pepper Potts, and had booked it into the now burning building. His tracker beeped as he grew closer to his target. He silently thanked Elena for wearing her fitness band as the beeping started to intensify.

She was close.

Clint hurried into the room, coughing as the smoke entered his lungs. Realizing that if he was struggling to breathe, then Elena was in serious trouble with her lungs. He hurried his body forward.

"Elena!" He called out, hoping to hear a response from her. Nothing, no answer. The beeping from his pad held steady, however.

Pushing forward, Clint called out once more, "ELENA, answer me dammit!" However, as he moved further into the lab, the beeping increased once more. As the smoke intensified, Clint realized Elena may be unable to speak.

Removing his jacket, Clint placed it in front of his mouth to block out some of the smoke. His foot was met with a set of stairs. He followed it into an alcove of sorts. Smoke was interfering with his vision, so he crouched down and met with a mass of auburn curls. "Elena!" he called out, his hand collided with a solid body.

The body remained still and did not respond to his touch. "Hey there Trust Fund!" He greeted solemnly as he went to pull her body closer. Elena's body moved an inch before Clint was unable to move her any closer. A pained groan left Elena at the jolt of movement. "Shit," Clint hissed out as he inspected the situation further.

Elena's arm was handcuffed to a pipe attached to the concrete wall. It seemed that it would be impossible to pull her free. Clint swiftly pulled out his gun, shuffled Elena's body as close to him as the chain would allow while he pulled the chain taut. Clint took a quick breath in and waved the smoke out of his face to focus on the chain.

Deftly pulling the trigger, Clint's shot went through cleanly, the bullet embedding onto the metal grate below.

Once Elena was free, Clint quickly covered her face with his jacket, hoping to prevent any more damage to her lungs. Realizing she was unable to move in her unconscious state, Clint lifted Elena into his arms. Her frame was tiny, and he felt no effort in holding her. A pain gasped left her lips as he moved her up body up into a cradle of sorts.

Her body hung lifelessly in his arms.

Checking over the girl in his arms, Clint was alarmed to see just how bad her condition was. Her breathing was laborious and slow. In the flame-licked light, her skin's pallor shown through her previously sun-kissed tan. The usually wild mass of auburn waves was matted with blood, and her skin, despite the roaring fire around them, was so cold it chilled Clint to his core.

As he moved them out of the lab, Clint brought Elena's head closer to his mouth, "I've got you Trust Fund, but you have got to keep fighting. You don't get to give up just yet." He whispered to her sternly. Clint was not sure when, but he had grown to care strongly for the kid. He wasn't about to let her go out without a fight.

Rushing out of the fire drenched building and to the first fire exit he saw, Clint attempted not to jostle Elena's worn body further. To his surprise, the exit he had chosen, brought him out to the side of the building. Away from the destructive robots that had now made themselves known on the roof.

Heading towards where he knew the S.H.I.E.L.D. vehicles to be, Clint heard Pepper Potts call out, "Elena could still be in there Tony!" Quickly, he shuffled himself and Elena towards the voice. Rounding the corner of the building, he heard a startled gasp escape Pepper. Pepper's head whipped up as Clint caught her wide panicked gaze. Those eyes glistening with tears when she focused on the unconscious girl in his arms. She halted for only a second before holding a hand to ear as if to hear something and shouted, "I see her, it's clear! What do I need to do?"

Pepper nodded at Clint as she ran back into the building, as what sounded like a torpedo exploded above them. Two loud voices could be heard taunting each other. No time to process what was happening above, Clint hurried by Coulson and simply yelled out "Hospital!"

He ran to the closest car, some newbie agent opened the back seat door for him. Clint gently placed Elena out of his arms and onto the back seat, checking her pulse as he moved her. He quickly noticed, however, that Elena's chest was still. His throat caught as he struggled to find a pulse along her neck. Quickly, Clint jumped in the back with her as he yelled out, "NEWBIE DRIVE!"

The agent jumped and ran into the driver's side of the car, "CLOSEST HOSPITAL NOW!" Clint yelled at him as he turned to Elena to double-check her breathing and her pulse.

Nothing.

With a sigh, Clint placed his hands on her chest and began to administer CPR. 30 pushes, 3 breaths, 30 pushes, 3 breaths.

Her body jolted under his administrations.

Clint tried not to look down at the lifeless form he was attempting to save. Instead, he focused all his anger on the agent in the driver's seat, "You want to be on desk duty the rest of your career?" He did not wait for an answer, "NO? Then I suggest you drive faster and break every traffic law you know to get us there."

Clint never stopped his compressions, keeping the rhythm and hoping he did not injure Elena further in the process. An eternity seemed to pass, yet Clint seemed to be on autopilot until he heard the newbie call out "We are here!"

The car jolted to a stop, and light quickly blinded Clint as the door closest to Elena's head was opened. The medical staff was waiting outside the car for them. In that brief second, the world stood still. As if the doctors and Clint were frozen in time, until Clint broke it by barking out, "She not breathing!"

That seemed to send all the medical personnel into a flurry of motions as they helped move Elena and Clint onto a gurney. As they worked on her, Clint called out every factor he knew about Elena. They nodded along, but once Elena's body was secure, a doctor coordinated taking over the compressions from Clint. It was seamless, and before he could blink, they whisked her away into what he assumed was the emergency room.

The air outside was disturbingly still as if none of the chaos over at Stark Industries had happened. Silently Clint shuffled back over to the car. He looked around, and for a hospital, the place was moderately empty. No one had followed them or seem to take a second glance at the chaos. Clint let out a breath and sunk down outside of the car. His head thudded against the car door as he tilted his head back for a moment to rest.

"Whew, what a day right?" The newbie agent tried to bond with him, as he poked his head out of the driver's side window. Clint opened one eye to glance up at the disturbance.


After taking a moment to compose himself, Clint stood up, fixed the agent a glare, and decided he needed to phone Colson with an update.

The hospital was stale, as Pepper and Tony sat on opposite sides of Elena's bed. The hum of machines along with, the bustling sounds from the rest of the hospital created an uncomfortable atmosphere for the two guardians. As they sat on their vigil, the steady beat of Elena's heart monitors weirdly set Tony's nerve on end. Though he was sure, he should be nothing but thankful that it was beeping at all. He couldn't help but glare every few minutes at the offendingly loud machine.

Wearily, Tony looked over at Elena asleep in her hospital bed, and he felt an immediate need to look away. Guilt and grief overtook him at the condition his daughter was in. Elena laid still in her bed, her auburn hair spread starkly against the clinically white pillow holding her head. Bandages were wrapped around the top part of her head, concealing the hard-hit she had sustained during her collapse down the stairs.

Every time Tony looked at the bandage, his mind flashed back to every crunch and thump her body had made on her descent down the marble staircase. He closed his eyes for a moment in hopes of banishing the image from in front of him.

Her face was thankfully untouched, giving off a farce of peace as her eyes remained closed. Tony hoped for a second that in this state, she was able to dream. That she was not stuck in some dark void, scared and alone.

Tony spared another glance at her leg and felt himself go pale with agony. The only way to describe the damage she had sustained was shattered. The doctors had described it as that her bones laying in fragments underneath her skin.

Tony forced himself once more to assess her injury. He took in the surgical pins that covered Elena's leg from the top of her thigh down all the way down to her ankle. The pins were the only things that were holding her bones together.

The surgeons had reset what they could. However, her bones were still fractured in some places and in pieces in others.

The beeping continued as Tony fiddled with the coffee cup in his hand, trying to find something to consume his thoughts other than his failure to protect his daughter. His failure to see what was right in front of him.

One of Elena's doctors knocked on the door, chart in his hand, "Mr. Stark, mind if I come in?"

Tony waved him in but failed to speak at all. Pepper, who had been on her way to falling asleep, bolted up at the doctor's voice. She shook her head to clear her drowsiness and brightened up to hear what the doctor had to say.

"What do you got for us Doc?" Tony asked, attempting to keep his voice upbeat. The man looked down at his chart and paused for a minute. Again, Tony felt his frustration building over the fact that the doctor wasn't prepared to present his report. The pause seemed to last forever, and Tony felt his frustration about to spill out. Luckily the doctor began to speak,, "Well her CT scan has shown that swelling in her brain has gone down exponentially, which is good. I don't see any damage just yet, so I'm hoping for full cognitive function when she wakes. However, there is a chance that she has retained some damage from all of this. She may be prone to seizures, cluster headaches, and vertigo. We just will have to keep an eye on her." He paused after that to shuffle through his papers once more, and Tony felt a growl growing in his throat.

"I've even sent the scans over to Dr. Stephen Strange in New York. He is thought to be one of the best up and coming in his field. He is quite confident Miss Stark has obtained minimal damage as well." Tony felt a flare of anger that there would be any damage at all, minimal or not.

Tony swallowed a lump that had been forming alongside his anger. A deep breath passed through him as he readied himself to ask a question he wasn't quite sure he wanted the answer to, "And her leg?"

The doctor in front of him paused once more before looking back down at his chart, "Her orthopedic doctor has not given his assessment just yet. I see it's noted that he wants another round of scans."

The Doctor looked up at the two guardians and quickly flashed them a comforting smile. However, that only seemed to harden the features on Tony's face. "How long will it be before those scans determine anything?" The question was so biting that the young doctor's features twisted in fear slightly.

Pepper shouted out, "Behave," from behind Tony. Tony barely glanced at her, before returning his gaze back to the man in front of him. "I'll confer with Doctor Lloyd, but I think we both want to wait till she is awake before we run the next set of tests. With her progress, that could be within the next 48 hours." The doctor's throat bobbed slightly, as Tony's eyes narrowed at the term "could be." Tony wanted everything exact when it came to Elena's care whether science allowed it or not.

"I'm sorry Mr. Stark, there is not a way for us to figure out when she will wake. We just have to wait and see. It is honestly up to her at this point." The man tried to comfort the father as best he could, but Tony's tense posture assured the doctor it was not working.

"I've been waiting for two days!" He argued impatiently.

"I know sir, but she has retained a fair amount of trauma. The brain can't be rushed. Her body will wake when it's ready." Again the doctor tried to coax the father in front of him into a sense of ease. He had been a vigilant guardian since his daughter had been brought in. Only briefly leaving for the press conference down in the lobby, where he had announced to the world he had a super suite and went by the name Iron Man.

The media had been swarming the hospital ever since. Hoping to catch a shot of the new super suited hero or to gather a whisper of what was happening with the younger Stark. The media had been told that Elena had been injured in the Stark Industries Explosion. They had claimed that Elena had been developing equipment down in the lab when the fight above had broken out. Her hospital floor was swarming with security to keep any onlookers away.

S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Coulson had made sure agents stood guard both outside her room and outside the hospital to keep Elena safe. While Tony was thankful, he worried the organization would hold their assistance over him to coerce him into helping them.

With the threat of Obadiah gone, Pepper and Tony hoped there was little need for her to be so guarded. However, no one had figured out the new organization that Obadiah had sold Elena to. The worry was that they may try to take what they may deem as theirs.

As Tony looked at Elena lying in the hospital bed, the image before him quickly morphed into a memory of April lying dead in the morgue. He felt an icy blast through his veins as the panic overtook him for a moment. Tony fell back into his chair as he fervently tried to shake the image way. After a moment, he was rewarded with the sight of Elena asleep in her bed. Quickly he made his way back to his post at her side. He grabbed her hand and turned his gaze to her chest, concentrating on the rise and fall of her chest. Pepper looked over at him in concern, "She's going to be okay Tony." She encouraged, throwing a small smile his way.

He looked over at Pepper who despite spending hours sitting around was dressed in her finest work attire. Despite the chaos recently, she was the epitome of poise. She had told him, she came prepared, in case she was needed to hold a presser or do something for Stark Industries in his absence. Tony made it very clear, after the press conference, that he would not be leaving Elena's side.

He looked over at her, the look of sorrow and regret clear in his eyes, "How did I not see this Pepper? Huh, how was I so blind to everything that was going on around me?" He had been pondering this whenever his brain had a spare second that wasn't consumed with worry over Elena. How could he have missed all these signs?

"Tony," She said gently, "There wasn't any way for you to have known, Obadiah he-"

Shaking his head at her, Tony interrupted, "But Elena knew, she could tell. And I didn't take the time to. Listen to her."

"Oh Tony-" but before Pepper could finish her thought, a groan could be heard between them.

The room went still for a moment as both of them paused, eyes wide, and looked down at Elena. Her eyes were squeezed shut in concentration, instead of the relaxed position she had been in moments ago. They both leaned in closer, each grabbing on to whichever of Elena's hand was closest to them.

"You with us Squirt?" Tony called out, rubbing his thumb across the back of her hand. She scrunched her eyes tighter and let out "Shhhh." Her face scrunched in pain.

Elena opened one eye towards Tony and grumbled, "Why are you yelling at me Old Man?"

Tony let out a relieved laugh, the sound of it once again causing Elena to close her eyes and groan. Tony leaned his body over hers in an effort to hug her, jostling the bed as he went. Elena spat out a small squeak of pain, which immediately had Tony throwing his body up as if he too has been hurt.

Elena remained still for a second. Her eyelids moved around rapidly, which was the only sign to them that she was trying to shift through her thoughts. The room lay still once more, and Tony realized he was holding his breath as he waited for Elena to move once more. Afraid that his mind had tricked him into believing she had moved.

Finally, Elena opened both her eye slowly, scanned around her, and asked, "How bad is the damage?" Her voice was slightly hoarse, partial from lack of use and the other part was probably residual damage from the smoke she had inhaled.

Tony huffed out a sigh and slowly sank onto the bed by Elena's side, his movement slow so as not to jostle her anymore. Gently, he reached over to brush a curl off of her face, "You knocked your head around pretty bad, but the prognosis is good. They do not believe you will have any significant damage once everything is healed." He gently caressed her head as he spoke, fretfulness evident in his eyes.

"Prognosis is a big word you." She teased, trying to alleviate the look in his eyes.

"I am a genius, you know?" he mocked with a forced smile.

The room seemed to pause again, as Elena went quiet, as she once more tried to take everything in around her. Testing the limits of her body, Elena groaned as she realized that a certain part of her was not responding as it should, "What about my leg. I can't feel it at the moment, which I guarantee is not a great sign." She struggled, every word a strong effort for her. Her breathing was labored. She felt tears leak from the corner of her eyes as the pain settled into her. Her body felt as if it was one big ache. However, since she was feeling some sort of pain, she knew the lack of it from her leg was a terrible sign. She didn't dare look down and see if it was missing.

Tony nodded, "They wanted to wait till you woke to do further testing. You've already had one corrective surgery on the lower portion of the leg. It was shattered in several places. I think your thigh is what they are most concerned about." Tony's voice was gruff in his effort to hold back his emotions. He knew if he portrayed his grief, Elena would try to take it on as her own. Elena nodded her head, closing her eyes in exhaustion. She was fighting to keep them open as Tony raised the blanket around her "Rest now Squirt, I'm here."

She hummed contently.


It had taken an additional four weeks in the hospital, and three more surgeries before Elena and Tony were given any answer on if Elena would be able to walk once more, "We can't push this Miss Stark, you threw a clot during your last surgery. We almost lost the leg altogether." Her doctor argued, talking down to her as if she wasn't aware of that particular fact.

"Yes, I know the implication of what that all means. What I'm asking isn't when can I go running? I'm asking for an estimated time on when I can start physio. To start rebuilding the muscles that have atrophied. I know about my nerve damage and the risk of clotting. I know that due to the bone graph I had, my healing will slow exponentially. I do understand Dr. Lloyd. I am a doctor too." She grumbled from her bed, raising her eyebrow at him in a challenge.

"Sorry Doc, she gets grumpy when she is due her meds," Tony joked as he sat beside her, resting a comforting hand on her shoulder.

"I understand your frustration Miss Stark, but I also need you to realize that even when you begin to heal, you may never regain full function of that leg. This is all going to take some time." He sighed at her impatience.

"Well, I start my residency in a week, so I need to have everything cleared by then," She let out without room for argument.

Tony whipped his head around to look at his daughter in shock, "I thought we were putting that on hold."

She shook her head, "I am not putting anything on hold. That was your idea," She argued. "The movers have taken packed and taken most of my stuff as instructed. I have people setting up my new place now. I also organized everything with my head resident to confirm my augment schedule. Which will include physical therapy at the hospital when I have breaks."

"I should have never brought in your laptop." Tony interrupted.

Elena ignored the statement and continued on, "I have been guaranteed that they are equipped to have a wheelchair zipping around their surgical floors. And while I cannot assist with surgeries for a few months-" The doctor let out a strained cough of disagreement. Elena shot him a glare. "For a few months, I can observe and study. I can practice my techniques in the labs and retain all I can. I am doing this Dad." She said with a strong sense of urgency, staring straight at him in defiance.

"Don't you want to come home and heal just a little bit?" He tried to reason, but the look in her eyes has told him the answer. He would not be able to change her mind.

Elena had no plans to return to their Malibu home for quite some time. She dreaded returning to that staircase. At night, Elena had flashes of her fall, of the pain. She usually awoke in a cold sweat, still believing for a few moments that she was back in that lab begging for death.

She was trying to portray a strong front, but Elena felt every crack in her facade. How close she was to mentally shattering. Her hope was that if she could consume herself in her work, in her new life, then perhaps things would get better. She would get better.

There was a knock on the door that broke the stare-off between father and daughter. Elena smiled, seeing that it was Rhodey at the door. He walked in cautiously, noticing the tension between the two. Rhodey looked at Elena and smiled back at her, happy to see her awake for the first time. However, it was shortly replaced as he looked over to Tony apologetically. "Sorry to drag you away Tony, but we may have an issue that requires your expertise." He said as if in code. Still unsure if Elena knew what had been revealed after the lab explosion.

"You mean you require Iron Man," She snickered at the ridiculous name as she spoke. Rhodey looked down as if caught in a lie and just nodded at her question. Tony shook his head, ready to object when Elena seeing an opportunity, quickly interrupted. "Go on, I have some work to do, and Pepper will be here in an hour with Remy. Plus, from what I can see, there are still guards at the door." She patted her dad's hand and dismissed the doctor who had yet to leave them. Tony hesitated but nodded in agreement.

He stood up, kissing Elena on the top of her head on his way up. "I'll be back soon. Try not to break anything while I'm away." He mocked, sending her a smile.

She pushed him away from her and yelled after them, "I demand cheeseburgers and fries upon your return. Don't come back without it. This hospital food may just kill me!" She yelled at his back.

"Too soon!" Tony yelled over his should. She had come so drastically close to death less than a month ago, and he was not ready to joke about it. Elena smiled at them as they both waved over their shoulders, walking out the door.

Alone in the room, Elena's smile slowly fell from her face. She inhaled deeply, taking a minute to contemplate everything. The beeping of the machines a comforting white noise.

Flashes of phantom pain erupted over her body. Her hair felt tight as if a fist was closed around the strands of her hair. She felt her mind start to spiral. Her panicked thoughts began to overrun when the sound of her phone sharply became an anchor. Pulled from the dredges of her mind, Elena reached over to grab her phone. A pop of color in the sterile white room caught her eye, and Elena smiled at the sunflowers on the bedside table. They were there early this morning, but Elena never got to thank her father for them.

She answered her phone without looking at the name, as she continued to admire the small sense of brightness the flowers brought to her room. "Elena Stark."

"Did you get my flowers?" The soothing voice asked over the line. Elena's eyes widened in surprise, "Josh?"

"Oh, I'm sorry were you expecting one of your other suitors?" His laugh brought a smile to her face.

"I was! The phone has just been ringing off the hook." She received a chuckle in response to her snark.

"You know Ellie, there is this great thing call caller ID you might want to start looking at it." Elena smiled openly at that. Their banter brought her a sense of normalcy that she hadn't felt in what seemed like forever.

"Very amusing," She laughed. While settling back into her bed, she smiled at the flowers to her left, "How are you?"

He let out a dramatic sigh, "Terrible I had a date on Friday who stood me up. I think she's seeing another doctor." Elena grimaced to herself but didn't miss a beat when she answered, "I'm sure you're not giving yourself enough credit. She could have been a little tied up."

Josh laughed openly at that, and Elena felt herself ease slightly at the sound.

"I know you want to be in the surgical room as soon as possible, but I didn't know you would take such drastic steps." Josh jokingly mocked, his northeastern accent a comfort to Elena's ears.

"I did say I wanted a full view of surgery, didn't I."

"In all seriousness, how are you feeling?" For the first time since everything had happened, Elena didn't feel the usual flare of annoyance at the question. She knew everyone meant well, but her mind was in such a state she was never sure how to answer.

Elena was silent for a moment as she contemplated how to respond.

A sigh left her as she spoke, "I'm very sore. The headaches have finally eased, but I'm worried about my leg. I don't think we will be able to go dancing any time soon." She glanced down, frowning at the offending appendage.

"Hey, I'm game to push around a wheelchair or just sit around." Josh offered, "But don't worry about that. I'm here whenever you are ready. You just focus on healing and on actually listening to your doctor. I bet you're a horrible patient to have." Josh was trying his best to keep the conversation light.

"Oh, the worst!" Elena answered and grimaced as she maneuvered around to get comfortable.

"Let me know when you are coming back to New York, I'll send you my schedule. That way whenever I am free, you know you can call me and ask for anything. You need ice cream, I'm your guy. A foot massage, I'm on it. Hey, if you need help showering, well I guess I'm just going to have to suck it up and help," the cockiness returning after a brief moment of sincerity.

"Oh, how chivalrous of you," She bantered back, knowing he was teasing her just to get a rise.

"I do what I can."

She paused for a moment taking in the lightness that this conversation had brought to her. For a few minutes, she wasn't consumed by her never-ending dark thoughts. "Thank you Josh really."

He paused and then softly replied, "Any time, Ellie."

She heard a knock on her door, "Miss Stark would you mind if we had a word with you?" It was Clint's handler, Agent Coulson. Elena struggled to remember his first name.

She covered her phone with her hand, "Come on in," She waved him in and adjusted herself so, she was sitting up straighter in her bed, a hard feat with her leg elevated.

She felt the easy smile fall off her face as the Agent opened the door. She quickly put her phone back to her ear, "I'll call you later, let me know what times are good, so I don't wake you." Josh quickly confirmed he would just that, then quickly said goodbye.

Elena looked at the flowers one more time as she placed her phone back on the nightstand. As she looked, up Clint walked in behind Agent Coulson, a small smile on his face. Elena returned that smile with her own beaming smile of her own. She was happy to see her friend after all he had done for her, "Clint!" She called out with enthusiasm, "I thought you were leaving!"

"Hey there Thrust Fund, how are you holding up?" He looked down at her affectionately but with a hint of calculation. Clint hadn't been allowed to see Elena after he had brought her in. They had talked on the one a few times, but each time he could hear the pain in her voice. This was the first time he was able to assess her for himself. She smirked at his question and quickly replied, "With pins and stitches."

Clint rolled his eyes at her mocking answering. "Figure of speech Trust Fund. I thought you were smart enough to recognize one of those," he shook his head at her with his familiar smirk plastered on his face. Elena let out a chuckled as she took in his amused expression. But she also noted a sense of tiredness to him.

The two men stood in silence for a moment before Elena motioned for the two of them to take a seat. Clint nodded and took a seat at her side, smirking as he flicked her uninjured leg. Elena automatically threw up her middle finger in jest as Clint settled in with a chuckle.

Coulson stood sternly in the center of the room with his arms crossed in front of him, though he did have a small look of amusement to him, "Alright enough you two. Miss Stark, on behalf of Director Fury we would like to offer you an opportunity." Elena appreciated him getting right to the point. So many people these days seemed to beat around the bush with her.

Elena remained silent but nodded for him to continue. He stepped closer to her as Clint seemed to lean in as well, "Once you are all healed, we would like for you to come train with us. Become an agent for S.H.E.I.L.D. we need someone with your intellect. The technological designs you have been brainstorming over the past few months have been unparallel to anything we currently have." Elena glared slightly at Coulson at the mention of the designs. "We need your drive to help push us into our next phase of work. Obviously, you will have to continue your surgeon training as well at the academy, which could take up to a year, but I'm sure you'll whizz past it much quicker than that." He joked, smiling down at her.

Elena stopped for a second and asked, "And how is it you were able to see my designs?" She lifted an eyebrow at him and glared a Clint before she continued, "They are on an encrypted folder on my personal hard drive." Her face remained unamused.

Clint looked down slightly ashamed and raised his hand over his head. "I'll take the blame for that. I've hacked a few of your things in the time since we met. I got into your phone, and then you had it plugged into your laptop at the same time as your hard drive. From there, I did some digging."

Elena crossed her arms and glared, "As appreciative of your offer as I am, you can tell your director that I decline." Elan's tone left no room for argument.

Clint looked surprised at Elena, "Trust Fund, your work could help us. Help a lot of people. Save a lot of lives!" He implored her.

Coulson missed it, but Clint saw the moment of hesitation in her eyes, but she sealed it back "I'm a doctor, not an agent." She argued, crossing her arms. As she did Clint caught a glimpse of the severe bruising on her left hand where the handcuff had been. "I made a promise to do no harm. And judging by the way Clint is, you are not dedicated solely to humanitarian missions."

Coulson had a look of understanding along with a small smile on his face. "Director Fury considered you may feel this way, which is why he also suggested a backup offer."

"I'm listening."

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Well that's the end of the first part! Next we will jump a little ahead to Elena's life and whatever her decision about Fury's second offer is! Thank you all again for your support and love! Hope you all have a great rest of your year and thank goodness 2020 is almost over!

fallondyson- I hope this was soon enough! I was trying my hardest to have it out before Christmas but I missed the mark!

Wonderwomanbatmanfan – So happy to grab your attention and that you are enjoying it! That would be cool if you could emote! Hope you enjoyed this chapter!