Present Day in Washington D.C - January 2016
Natasha Romanoff woke up with a yawn and felt a pinch on in her inner elbow. When she opened an eye, she saw a mosquito draining blood from her dominant vein. With a smack of her hand, she crushes it and sighs. She pulls herself out of bed slowly before moving over to the treadmill and does a run for about five minutes, barely breaking a sweat in the process. When she finished, she grabbed her clothes and took a shower in her bathroom. She winces in pain as the hot water burns her wound from five years ago.
Natasha Romanoff looked up at herself in the mirror as she gets dressed in her clothes for the day. A pair of black jeans and a white T-shirt were good enough for her. She gets her hair done and puts on makeup. She lifts her shirt and sees a stitch from her wound on her side come off. She uses a paper towel to soak up the blood before fixing the stitch herself. It's been five years since she was stabbed in the side and her wound still refused to heal itself and cause her pain. That hurt, she thought.
Natasha Romanoff went into the kitchen and cut open a bag of Canadian ham, cracked open an egg, and cooked both on two different pans on the stove. She brewed herself ground coffee and added artificial sweetener and four spoonfuls of creamer. Once she was done with the cooking, she sits down at the table, takes a sip of her coffee, dabs Tabasco sauce on her eggs, sunny-side-up eggs, and uses a fork to pick up the cooked ham and take a bite out of it. She made herself a chocolate protein shake before she moved on with her schedule.
Natasha Romanoff went into her closet to put on her real clothes for work. She pulled out a vest and her boots. She double knots her boots, puts her bulletproof vest on, then reaches under her bed to pull out a box. Inside the box were three pistols. She grabs the Makarov PM pistol and puts it in her boot. She takes the Walther PPK and picks it in a holster behind her back. She pulls out her real weapon of choice, the Glock 26 pistol and smiles to herself as she puts it in the holster of her hip.
Natasha Romanoff puts a flannel over her bulletproof vest before taking out parts of her Colt M4A1 and walking out of her apartment building. As she walks down the steps, a neighbor waves to her and she waves back. When she gets at the bottom, a police car with her half-twin brother was inside. He calls out for her and she sits down in the passenger seat. As the police car drives off, she looks out the window, stares out into the city of Washington D.C. and smiles warmly.
She looks at her brother and says, "Hey, little brother."
"We got a situation that requires all SWAT officers available," Tony Masters said as he wears a balaclava over his face and goggles around his eyes. "There's a shootout near the bank."
Natasha put on her balaclava and helmet that she pulled out from the glove compartment. She cocks her Colt M4A1 gun and looks at Tony before saying, "Let's help them out then."
Tony pulls up to the police shootout and a bullet hits the front window. The two siblings duck down before crawling out of the van in their SWAT uniforms. They slide along the car to a SWAT van that was taking heavy fire. "What's going on?" Nat asked a SWAT officer behind her, "Is this more than a simple bank heist?"
The SWAT officer responded by saying, "It is something much worse." He peeks his head out to see the gunfire coming from inside the windows of the bank. "We've got a large number of hostiles in there. We've counted at least thirteen hostages and each one is rigged with some kind of explosive device. Those bad guys had been spraying the hell out of us all day with bullets."
Nat nods at the officer before crouching down and checking to make sure the magazine in her gun was fully loaded. "I'll take the point in there," she tells the SWAT officer before she jumps to her feet, takes aim, and shoots off into the bank. Bullets come firing back at her but she rolls over like a rug on the ground, takes aim, and squeezes the trigger. Even from a distance, she could hear the cryings of a shooter dying.
All gunfire was directed at her on the ground now. She slides across the ground and under a police car.
Tony pops out from behind cover and shoots every single round he had at the bank and suppressed their firing for several seconds so Nat could move forward and to another squad car.
Tony jumps back into cover and reloads. A SWAT officer captures his attention by asking, "That's your sister?"
"Complicated, but yeah."
"She's a badass."
"She gets that from me."
The police shot back at the robbers while Nat moved forward. She holsters his assault rifle to make it easier to move across the ground. She keeps her head down and stabs behind waist-high cover. She lunges for cover behind a trash can and pulls out her pistol of choice. She somersaults forward and hides behind a pillar. She looks out to see if the robbers could spot her and she ran for the alleyway between the bank and a taller building. The gunfire came shooting out the wall from the side from behind her. She ran faster and jumped for it.
She jumped onto one wall before leaping like a cat and climbing up a ladder leading to the roof. Once she makes it inside the roof, she looks for the closest ventilation shaft that was large enough for her to fit through. "Gonna have to sacrifice my M4A1, hope that Stevens doesn't get upset with me back at the department." She puts her assault rifle against the vent and climbs inside the air vent.
"Climbing in an air vent like a spider, just as I imagined my day would go today." She crawls across the ventilation shaft like a spider, looking down the grates beneath her to keep track of her enemies.
Natasha crawls to an air grate and uses all of her strength to push it off. She gripped it by the bars so when she does push it off, it wouldn't fall to the ground and make a loud noise and alert the shooters. She holds onto the grate as she crawls through and sees that she's twenty feet above the ground. "Shit," she curses, realizing that she couldn't figure out a way down. "Now what?" She answers her question by looking forward and sees a dangling light within arm's reach. She calculated that the dangling light would be able to support her weight.
She places the grate inside the air vent and reaches out. With a leap made from the strength in her upper body, she swung over to the dangling lamp, relieved that it didn't break due to her weight. Like Indiana Jones using his whip, she swings to the next lamp and grabs it to swing across. When she reaches the last dangling light, she just jumps for the wall behind it and clings onto a handhold protruding from the wall. She pulls herself up. There was a narrow walkway alongside the wall that allowed her to stand but she had to maintain as much balance as possible and she had to keep her back pressed against the wall.
She moves along the narrow walkway to look at the hostiles inside. She whispered very softly to herself as she records her analysis. "Ten bad guys total. Three dead, seven that are about to be. Four shooting at the police outside and three keeping thirteen hostages in check inside the bank vault." She narrows her eyes and sees wiring wrapped around each hostage that tied them together, like when prisoners get off the bus and they're all connected by chains around their ankles. "Sensitive wiring all interconnected to one bomb that has to be placed inside the bank vault. If so much as a string is ripped, the bombs will go off…" She looks for any signs of the bomb and could only deduce that they were already in the bank vault with the hostages.
"Innocent people put in the crossfire just to ensure one's survival?" She shook her head, "Unacceptable." But then she studies the kind of tripwire being used. "If I cut the wires in a specific order, the bombs won't go off. Sensitive tripwires usually work in sequential order. If one doesn't go off then the others won't go off."
She climbs down and jumps onto a bookshelf but hoped that the loud thud could be misinterpreted to the shooters as a gunshot. She hopes to the ground and rolls underneath a desk.
"Gotta secure the hostages first." She pulls out her radio and calls in her brother. "Tony, there are thirteen hostages inside the bank vault, all tied together by an explosive tripwire. I need you and your crew to make as much noise as possible so I can take out the ones guarding the hostages."
"No problem," Tony immediately responded.
Nat waited several minutes before police started firing rapidly at the robbers and forced them to take cover. The three guarding the hostages went over to help their companions return fire. "That just made my job easier." Nat quickly ran for the bank vault. She hid behind one of the hostages and took out a knife. The hostages were terrified but once they saw her SWAT uniform, they knew that she could be trusted. Each one kept their mouth shut as possible (even with gags in their mouths).
She cuts the string of wires in a certain pattern so they won't go off. All that training in the Red Room paid off.
"You'll be fine," she tells the traumatized hostages. She looks behind her and sees one of the robbers directing the hostage-takers to get back to their stations. Nat instantly thought of something and she took out her Glock 26.
When the three came running back, they saw the body of a redheaded woman laying down in front of the bank vault. The hostages appeared to still have the wires wrapped around and when one of the robbers went to investigate, Nat bursts to life and shoots the robber in the head. She finishes the other two off before they could even raise their guns.
Two of the four robbers up front were shocked to see Nat up and about and turn their guns on her. The SWAT woman evades their aim of gunfire and hides behind a desk that was several feet away from the bank vault. She reloaded her pistol and jumped to her feet and with having less than a second to aim, hits the first robber in the head before using Mozambique Drill on the second one.
The two remaining robbers turned to face Nat but the wall to their side exploded as a SWAT van came plowing through. One of the robbers was standing in the way and thrown back against the ground.
Tony jumps out of the SWAT van and kicks the gun out of the hands of the remaining robber. He holds his hands out, subtle showing that this was his harmless way of asking for a challenge. He removed his bulletproof vest but kept his balaclava and sunglasses on.
Nat lined up her sights but took her finger away from the trigger, letting her younger brother have his fun.
The robber attacks Tony, punching him everywhere he could. He aimed mostly for his stomach and his face yet Tony flinched as much as a statue would when punched in the face. Tony grabs the next punch by the robber's knuckles and uses all the strength in his arms to crush the bones inside.
The robber yells in pain and it turns on Tony to see the robber crying in agony. He had something of a sick and twisted mind but when it came to robbers like the one he had in his hand, he wanted to inflict whatever pain he could on him for putting innocent people in danger. Tony smirks under his mask and brings his knee underneath the robber's jaw. He releases the robber's knuckles to let him stagger back. He dodges a punch coming from the robber's intact hand. He dodges the blow before doing an uppercut elbow.
Tony's photographic reflexes start kicking in. After doing a current up-to-date Marvel challenge, watching all the MCU movies in chronological order starting from Iron Man up Ant-Man, he was sure that his fighting skills were advanced enough to take out one thug. He starts kicking the robber away attacks the robber, punching him everywhere he could, (duplicating Captain America's fighting style). He aimed mostly for his stomach and his face and when he punched the robber in the face (duplicating Hawkeye's fighting style), he flinched as much as any human inexperienced in combat would when delivered a solid punch (duplicating Thor's fighting style).
He knocks the robber out cold by throwing a roundhouse kick to his jaw (duplicating Phil Coulson's fighting style). He smiles under his balaclava, taking off his sunglasses and looks at his sister. "Thanks for letting me have that victory."
"No problem." Nat releases the hammer on before she holsters her pistol and instructs the hostages to come out of the bank vault. She collects as much of the bombing wire as she could and handed it all over to the incoming bomb squad as police officers came in to arrest the two surviving robbers.
Also, Nat had managed to retrieve her gun from the roof.
Tony opens the front doors and allows himself and his older sister to walk out with the hostages and police following him. More SWAT officers went inside the bank to secure the building and the two siblings knew that their job was done. Tony and Nat reunite with the police chief.
Nat tells the chief, "All hostages are secure and all but two of the robbers are dead." She nods at her brother, "Good job, little brother."
"No," Tony said, "Good job to you, big sister."
Nat pats her little brother before he walks away. Nat tells the other police officers and SWAT at the scene a good job for their work. As Nat turned to walk away, someone in the crowd behind the police tape started clapping. Nat froze and looked at this man before more people started clapping along and cheering for Natasha Romanoff specifically. She realizes a few seconds later that the people clapping were the hostages she saved.
"Good job, Romanoff," a SWAT officer praises.
Nat does a three-sixty turn, realizing that almost everybody in the crowd was cheering for her. It almost brought a tear to her eye. Almost. She rubs her eyes before silently nodding, a sign of your welcome to the hostages. She climbs back in the passenger seat of Tony's car and looks out the window to the grateful crowd.
Red Room assigning me here was the best thing that happened to me.
Natasha and Tony took a ride back to the police station where they discarded their gear. Tony, refused to remove the mask from his face and walked around for the rest of the day with a pair of sunglasses and a balaclava on.
Nat went to her work station and she sat down in her chair. For the first thirty minutes after sitting down, fellow officers came over to her desk to congratulate her on her latest works in stopping the bank robbers. She acted with modesty, saying that it was the work of the police department. Thirty minutes later, she turned on her computer and opened up an encrypted chat room.
She types January 6, 2016, Washington D.C., Natasha Romanoff stopped a bank robbery downtown with the help of Tony Masters.
She waits for a reply, stretching her arms out as she waited before a message popped up on the screen, reading: Excellent work. Madame B. is impressed. She has no idea who she is talking to, except a high-ranking agent of the Red Room.
She types back: Natasha Romanoff is waiting for a real operation to come through, questions when she cancels this 'normal' life as a SWAT officer.
Patience, Operation White Widow is in full effect and will take place as soon as tomorrow.
Natasha's eyes stare at the screen, making sure that every word on the screen was authentic. She stares off into space, remembering hearing about Operation White Widow but not knowing what it was.
Natasha Romanoff: What is Operation White Widow exactly?
I apologize, are you the one who graduated at the top of the Red Room class?
This information is priceless. You are clearance Level 6; White Widow is a Level 8 operation.
"Shit," Natasha curses her favorite word under her breath again.
Is there anything that Natasha Romanoff is authorized to hear?
She sends it in and waits. As she waited, she realized that she referred to herself in the third person every time she typed. She would've said 'I' but she was prohibited from saying 'I' if she was referring to herself directly. Thirty seconds pass and the reply comes back. It was one word but simple.
She writes the last of her secure browser conversation, saying goodbye to whatever Red Room agent that she was talking to and closes out the secure browser. She leaned back in her chair and spins in circles anxiously before her brother walks over.
"What's up, Tony?" She stares at his eyes, the only thing of his real face visible through the balaclava and notes the healed up scars around the eyes. "I know you didn't come here to inquire about my day."
"No, I just wanted to see how much I could annoy you until you kick me in the balls." He tried to silence himself but he snickered. "Sorry, that's why I'm here." He puts his hands in his pockets as if he was about to pull out something. "Although…"
"Just get on with it before I do kick you in the balls."
"Do you think you could make it for dinner tonight at my place?"
As if she was bored, she rested her chin on her hand. "Why?"
"You know my beautiful wife and adorable daughter," he answers as he thinks about his wife and daughter, "You've been living all by yourself in an apartment..."
"And my daughter barely gets to see you anymore. Jeanne misses you and I thought that it would be good to see her again. Don't you want to see your niece?"
Trying to guilt me, huh? "Of course, I wouldn't miss seeing my adorable niece for the world." Nat smiled warmly and got up to her feet. She shakes his hand as if she were offering him a business deal. "I'm always free to see my niece. Free and happy. Any time, anywhere. Just tell me the time and I'll be there."
"Consider myself already present. Anything I should bring?"
"Six-pack of beer, and root beer so Jeanne doesn't feel like a pariah." He doesn't miss the smile on her face and neither the computer with the encrypted network on the screen. It doesn't take him too long to recognize that she was using an encrypted network to communicate with an overseas Red Room agent. "Calling your boyfriend in the Red Room?"
"FYI: I'm too good to have a boyfriend, ask Alexei...and a Red Room agent was talking about said something called Operation White Widow and how it is in full effect starting tomorrow."
"What the hell is Operation White Widow?"
"It's level 8 and the two of us are level 6 so we are on a need-to-know basis."
"No point in dwelling on what kind of operation it is then." He shrugs with a heavy sigh. "Even I am left in the dark about what's going on around the world."
Nat chuckles before saying, "Let's just stay updated."
"Speaking of staying updated and not being left in the dark…" Natasha and Tony turned to see an elderly man with gray hair and black sunglasses (Stan Lee) approach them with a package in hand. "I got a package for Tony…" he looks down at the label to read the last name, "Bastard."
Nat laughed upon realizing what the old man said, "This is my brother, Tony 'Bastard', he is the very definition as well." She laughs for a few more seconds. "'Natasha Romanoff, here. Tony Bastard, here. Happy birthday dear Tony Bastard.'"
Tony laughs with her and signs for the package before the old man leaves. Tony holds the package in his hands, "You are never going to let that go, are you?" he questions after his laughing sister.
"'Hello, Mr. Bastard,'" she makes fun of her brother, "'Are your parents married?' 'Nope, I'm a bastard.' 'It fits.'"
Tony ignores her and uses his pocket knife to cut open the box. Inside the box, was pulled out by Tony himself to be a mask. Nat examined the mask itself, taking note of every detail like how she did when she was stopping that bank robbery. The mask had a skull that resembled that of the skull from Santa Muerte. She touched the mask, feeling its entire content to be made of some kind of latex rubber like a Halloween mask. When she touched the empty eye sockets, Tony snatched it away from her touch like he was protecting his child from a contagious person. "Get your own Santa Muerte mask."
"Where'd you get it?"
"I requested one of the agents back home back in Russia to make it for me." He rubs his fingers all over the design, eyes never leaving the mask as he was entranced by it. He turns his back to Natasha and the other co-workers and removes his balaclava and tosses it into the closest trash can without even looking.
"You know," Nat says calmly as her brother puts on the mask, "I've seen your face; there's nothing to be ashamed of."
"You would never understand," Tony spat at her as he finished putting the mask. "You got stabbed, my entire face was torn off."
"You've been wearing masks ever since you were a child. The first mask I've ever seen you wore was Jason's mask from Friday the 13th. Why?"
"Personal." He tightens the straps around his back as if to make sure that it would never come loose from his face.
"I can never wear bikinis again." She lifts her shirt to reveal her wound stitched up. "I know what you're doing through...to a degree."
Tony turns around with his mask on now, looking at Nat through the empty eye sockets, eyeing her from head to toe to make sure he could see correctly. "How do I look?" he sarcastically puts his hands on his hips. "Do I look sexy enough to kill?"
"Gross," Nat revolted, "I'm your sister."
"Half-twin sister," he points out.
"Still the same." She walked over to him and touches his face mask, imaging as if it weren't in the way. "Tony, you do not need a mask to show the world what you look like. I've seen your face and you're beautiful, little brother."
Tony moved his head away from her hand and groaned in disgust, "I do hear the perversion. Jesus, Nat." He walks away and back to his station. Nat sunk back into her chair with a deep sigh. Suddenly feeling hungry, she reaches into a drawer above her filing cabinet and pulls out a Little Debbie's oatmeal creme pie.
Nothing beats lunch better than oatmeal creme pie.
Natasha turned her computer on once it shut down due to inactivity and searched up any active crimes in the area.
This was life in America: Dressing up in a bulletproof outfit and waiting for dispatch to call in SWAT officers to take down heavily armed men. The job was okay, but I love Little Debbies.
Upon seeing that no active crimes were happening in the area, she grabs her belongings like her pistols from her desk and heads out into town.
Washington D.C., the beautiful capital of the United States. Tony's homeland. I was born and raised in Russia, grew up to become part of the most elite assassin society known to mankind, only to get shipped here for five years for 'information fetching' and 'Johnny-on-the-spot espionage.' I'm an ASSASSIN, not a SPY!
Natasha Romanoff heads down an alleyway and when she makes it to the end, she sees a homeless man sitting up against the brick wall to her right wearing no shirt. She studied his malnourished form and suddenly felt a pang of sadness in her chest. She pulls out an oatmeal creme pie she brought with and handed it to the homeless man, who accepted it with gratitude. "Enjoy it."
"That was very generous of you to do, ma'am."
Nat looks up and suddenly sees a man dressed in ripped clothing approach her. Judging by his ripped clothing and his bad smell, he was a homeless person, probably jealous because they got no food.
"I'm just a generous person is all," Nat replies. She stands back up and starts to walk before another man steps in front of her and holds a pocket knife at his side. Nat holds her hands up as she tries to persuade, "This is something that you do not want to do. I've had a long and busy day and I'm just trying to get home."
"How come you fed Terrance over here and not us?" the first man asked as he pulled out a pocket knife of his own. "If you're not going to give us food, at least give us your wallet so we can pay for food ourselves."
Nat contemplated just giving them money until she noticed that while they were dressed in dirty clothing and smelled bad, they were not homeless people. Homeless people don't have the strength to threaten people for money. These were just small-time crooks dressed as homeless people.
A perfect opportunity to try out my new move.
Nat reaches into her back pocket, pulls out a matchbook and removes two of the 'matches'. "Only chance to leave me before you guys are going to be screaming in agony."
Without even hesitating, the two men jump her. Nat grabs both of their hands with the knives in them, puts them both in a headlock with both elbows, and stabs them in the back of their necks with the tips of the 'matches'.
"What did you do?!" the first thug asked, suddenly paralyzed in a position with his left arm held out. He twitches with every muscle movement and felt something poke into his neck. "What did you do to us."
"I put an acupuncture needle in your neck." She takes the switchblades from both paralyzed thugs before throwing them to the side.
"What's going to happen to us?"
"You'll be paralyzed like that for a long time until you can remove the needles from your neck. I implanted them in a forbidden place that could kill you. Do you want to get out of this situation? All you have to do is pull the needle out of your neck. Too quickly and it can kill you. Too slowly and it can kill you." She looks at the homeless person she fed and he gets up and moves away from her, understanding that this was her business and he should not intrude. Nat decided that she had enough and walked off down the alleyway. "Ta-ta."
Tony walked around the station, flashing his new mask around and trying to capture the attention of people. He acts modest and returns to his station to pretend that he is working. One of the officers came approaching him, however, and of all people, it had to be Sondra Brandenberg, the skinny (in an athletic way) girl with brown hair and eyes from Columbus, Ohio. The one working in the forensic department as a blood-spatter analyst. Tony was suspicious of her because she worked in blood-spatter and after watching all ninety-six episodes of Dexter, he knew that it was the people in the blood-spatter field you had to watch out for.
"Masters," Sondra says professionally.
"Brandenberg," Tony replies. He turns his head to look at her and he doesn't miss the slight reaction on her face when she sees the skull mask on. "It's custom made," he says randomly as if trying to show off his custom lifestyle, "It cost me thirty dollars and another ten dollars to make it."
That's a lie, but she doesn't need to know I'm an assassin for the world's most elite group of assassins.
"I think you look cute in it," she says almost sheepishly, "I think it suits you."
"Thank you." Someone, please shoot me and this fangirl off my back. "How are you doing today?"
"I've been doing well. I also heard what you did inside the bank."
Someone shoot me, cut me open with a chainsaw, and dump my remains in the Atlantic ocean. "What do you think?"
"You're brave for going up against a bank robber."
"Thank you but it was the department as a whole who did all the heroic work." He studies her, trying to find the reason why Sondra approached him in the first place so he did the polite thing and asked cynically, "Why are you here."
"I just wanted to chat with you, that's all."
Tony warned her before things advanced, "I have a wife and a daughter." He nods to the framed picture of them on her desk...and he was wearing a mask on even in the picture. "She's the best a guy like me could ask for. I'm lucky to have her."
Sondra nods at him before she explains that she already knew about them, "You always talk about Mercedes and Jeanne but to me, it sounds like she might be the lucky one to have you." Great, the girl who has a massive crush on me is getting the message. "And just to clarify, I'm only here as a friend, not as a crush; I don't even have a crush on you."
Tony's heart dropped to his stomach and he winced like he was getting a shot. She was pursuing me but now she's telling me she DOESN'T have a crush on me? Tony balled up his shaking fists but let out a sigh to calm himself down. "Well, I'm glad you're respecting my status as a husband and a father," he lets out, hoping that she would leave afterward but she remained where she stood.
"Of course," she replies and turns back before looking at Tony, where she said, "But I do have one question though?"
He has her full attention. "What's that?"
"How are you and Natasha half-twins?"
The answer that both Nat and himself gave to whoever asked that question was and was almost rehearsed. Even how they would describe it would sound like it was rehearsed for specific occasions like this one: "Complicated."
"Are you two like fraternal twins or something?"
Tony does a so-so gesture. "More than that."
"Identical twins but born a different gender?"
"That's fraternal twins." When he considered her answer, he realized what she was saying. "But I guess you could say that."
"Is there any way you could explain?"
Here comes the rehearsed answer: "Yeah. Me and Natasha share the same father and biological mother, but due to in vitro fertilization, we were born in bodies separate from our biological mother. We were supposed to be born identical twins but our genes changed when we were put in another woman's womb. Unlike identical twins, who share 100% of their genes or fraternal twins with 50%, we share 75% of our genes. We may be twins born in different bodies at the same time, and I mean literally, but the only parent we share in common is our biological father."
Sondra's face froze up like a student being taught someone foreign to her until the teacher explained it and in this subject: Biology. She recollected every word he said and blinked a few times before asking, "Sounds like SyFy or something, how do you feel about that?"
"The only thing I can say about that is 'Why did our man-whore of a father have to force us to be born in different bodies?' For all I know, I could have twenty half-brothers and sisters. Your biological father, he could be my father. Hell, even my father can be your father's father."
Sondra laughed at that last sentence. "Say no more," Sondra said in between laughs, "You don't have to say anymore if you don't want to." Tony was infected by her contagious laughter. Sondra checks her wristwatch for the time and taps against the glass. "I'm afraid I must be getting back to work but I'll see you later, Tony." Before she leaves, she whispers down into his ear and whispers, "I love your skull mask by the way; I've always been curious what your real face looks like."
Tony smiled under his mask as he waved her off. He sighs as he rests his elbows on his knees. "How can she have a crush on me if she doesn't know what my real face looks like?" Then again, I never showed my face to Mercedes and she loves me. Man, I love physical expressions; makes up for my loss of a face.