Author's Notes: I do not own the Avengers or the X-Men. All characters and respective media belongs to Marvel Comics, with Disney and Fox owning the movie rights. Story takes place years after X-Men: The Last Stand and during the Avengers. Rated T for strong language.
The command barked from a feral, looking man as he sat in a run-down bar, raising his glass with one hand and cigar in the other. The man, commonly known as Logan but known in the mutant community as Wolverine, is a regular at the drinking establishment, preferred to come in and drink when there were few patrons around.
The bartender, a young man somewhere in his twenties, gave the mutant a skeptical look. "Are you sure, sir? That's been your twelfth shot." The barkeep asked concerned, and gulped when Logan glared back at him, seeing hidden rage in his dark eyes.
"Kid, I know when I can't handle my liquor. And right now, I'm starting to get mad that my glass isn't full." Logan replied as he gestured to the almost, vacant bar around him. "Should I go then? I'm pretty sure your manager won't be happy that his number one customer would walk out the door." Logan remarked, leaving the glass on the table as he reached in his pocket to pay for the drinks.
Immediately, the bartender stumbled on a response in an attempt to make him stop. "T-That w-won't be necessary, sir." The young man stuttered as he held the empty bottle in his hands. "I'll go get you another one right away." The barkeep responded as he quickly disappeared to the storage room to find another filled bottle.
Logan relaxed as he resumed sitting in the bar, placing the cigar in his mouth. Inhaling it deeply, he breathed out large puffs of smoke before placing it on top of the ash tray. A bar on a slow day really helped the mutant think, his mind at peace over the darkness that was his past.
Speaking of his past, a ghost of a smirk formed on Logan's face as he thought about the school. He knew Ororo and Bobby would manage fine, as long as the kids didn't burn down the school with lasers or something. Suddenly, Logan felt a sting of guilt, leaving the team that was the closest thing to him as family not long after Charles' funeral.
Logan lowers his head as he bridges the top of his nose with his fingers as the sight of a kind, angelic, red-head came to mind. Jean. The woman who Logan loved in all his heart now haunted him like a ghost. Every night, Logan relives killing her over again… and again… and again.
Logan knew that he had no choice. With the Phoenix controlling her, Jean would have destroyed everything, neither human nor mutant would survive. Sleep felt like a distant dream itself, every night Jean would appear to him and proclaim that she loved him with that beautiful smile as Logan looks down in horror of his claws covered in her blood, her dying into his arms.
Ever since that day, Logan never used his claws again. With him constantly experiencing these nightmares, he left the Xavier institute, traveling north until he came here. Jean still haunted him though, becoming a curse to the feral mutant wherever he went.
Logan exhales as he tightens his grip on his glass, almost breaking it from the pressure as he struggles not to go berserk in rage. "Where the hell is that damn kid?" The feral mutant muttered through clenched teeth, wanting more than one drink right about now. Unfortunately, he grew even more aggravated when the door of the bar swung open, with Logan almost growling at the poor time as the mutant turned his head to see the newcomer.
A dark skinned man is seen wearing all black as he walks inside, hands behind his back; Black shoes, black pants, black gloves, and a long, dark coat. The man is seen to be in his late fifties to early sixties, but maintains in decent shape for a man in his years. He also wore an eye patch, covering up of what used to be an incident that cost him one of his eyes. His other eye showed an intense gaze, indicating years of experience as a soldier. The man briefly looked around the room before settling his sights on Logan, much to the former X-Man's annoyance and growing anger.
This man was military based on the cold, calculating way he analyzed his surroundings as he walked closer to Logan. The former hero suspected he met this man before his amnesia, based on how he instantly recognized him. If this man was in anyway like Stryker, then his six years of not using his claws might come to an end.
Logan turned his head, placing the cigar back in his mouth as the other man began to speak. "It took quite a while to track you down, Logan. You're a man who's hard to find. But even the best tend to get sloppy when they're out of the action for too long." The man remarked as Logan turned his full attention to the newcomer. "And I'm glad that you did." He added as the mutant breathed out smoke before taking out his cigar.
"Who the hell are you?" Logan demanded, his voice low with an underlying tone of provocation hidden beneath it. The other man was not intimidated, taking a seat next to him as he looked dead in the eye.
"Nick Fury, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D." The man introduced and gave a quick chuckle to Logan's confused look. "I doubt you remember me Logan, I've read the side effects about your experimentation. You were one of the best, and now we need you again, now more than ever." Fury replied as Logan can see the hidden distress in his one eye.
"Listen bub." Logan began, placing his cigar in the ash tray. "I don't want anything that you're selling. I'm done being the government's pet, so you can go fuck yourself." Logan replied before placing money under his glass for his drinks as he grabbed his jacket, intent of walking out.
"I know about the school, Logan." Fury began, stopping the mutant in his tracks. "I also know that you were one of the X-Men during the mutant crisis against terrorist Eric Lehnsherr." The director said as Logan walked back, full of rage as he glared at the sitting man.
"Are you trying to threaten them bub? Because if you are, then I guess you know what happens when someone pisses me off." Logan growled, his claws itching beneath the surface.
Fury stared back, with no fear at all shown he returned his gaze to the mutant. "I am not trying to threaten anyone. I just want to talk about some mistakes. Mistakes I made very recently." The spy coolly responded, prompting Logan to calm down slightly as he once again sees the hidden desperation in the other man's eye.
"What do you want?" Logan asked as Fury gestured the mutant to sit back down. With a sigh, Logan took his seat as Fury took out a file from his coat.
"Several hours earlier, a hostile force took the Tesseract, the key to possible sustainable energy." Fury explained as he gave Logan the file. Glimpsing through it, Logan sees a picture of a blue cube that radiates energy which he assumed was the Tesseract. "With it in enemy hands, the Tesseract has the potential power to send us back to the Stone Age." The spy added, concern evident through his voice.
Logan looks back at Fury with a skeptical look. "And what do you need me for? This isn't a mutant problem." The Canadian remarked as he placed the file down.
"That's because we might have a global catastrophe on our hands that could jeopardize the planet." Fury retorted before sighing. "The world is getting bigger, bigger than we can imagine. And during these times, we need a response team, a team of extraordinary people who can fight the battles that we never could. We need men and women who fight for both humans and mutants. We need heroes at a time like this, we need the Wolverine." Fury said, as Logan clenches his fists.
"That's not who I am anymore." Logan quietly muttered, hiding the guilt in his voice before exhaling. Turning to the director, the mutant continued. "I haven't used my claws for six years and I intend to keep it that way. I spilled a lot of blood, some very close to me." The Canadian replied softly, remembering Jean in all her beauty. "So sorry pal, I can't help you." Logan replied as he gave the file back to the agent.
Fury gave a disappointing look before placing the file back in his coat. "I can't force you to join, but the world is in danger. If you want to help us, I have all your history so you can have the answers you're looking for. We're soldiers, we both have blood on our hands. All I'm asking is that you help us one more time, you're in the wind with everything you're looking for." The other man replied as Logan thought over his words. Fury then stood as he took out a card with the logo of S.H.I.E.L.D placed in the front as he gave it to Logan. "Here's our number if you change your mind. But you better decide fast, our fate may depend on it." With that said and the swish of his coat, Fury exited the bar, leaving Logan alone.
The Canadian stared at the card, contemplating of what to do. He promised to himself that he would be a better person, not just for him but for Chuck, Scott, and Jean. But Logan knew all three of them would do the right thing, and join Fury's team. He was so caught up in his thoughts, he didn't notice the bartender came back with a new bottle.
"Um, sir?" The bartender asked, prompting Logan to look up. "Do you still want that drink?" The young man asked as he noticed the money under his glass.
Logan nods, prompting the bartender to pour the liquid into the glass. Taking a gulp, Logan continues to stare at the card, once more internally debating of what is the right thing to do. Should he do it? Would he finally be at peace with himself?
Placing another bill under his glass, Logan placed the card in his pants as he wore his jacket, leaving the bar for his motorcycle parked outside, his choice clear.
He made his decision.