A/N Hey, everyone. So, this is a storyline I started because I was bored in class, and I ended up liking it. So, I figured I'd see how it went. Enjoy.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
"Mr. Peterson?" Mike blinked in surprise as the small girl slipped into his booth, sitting across from him. She was probably about the same age as his own son, but she was tiny. Her face was dirty and her clothes severely worn out, her dark hair pulled back in a sloppy pony tail. She also had that pinched, unhealthy look of someone who'd had far too little to eat for far too long a time. Honestly, she looked like a starving orphan.
"Where are your parents, kid?" he asked. She was way too young to be out on her own. He'd never let Ace wander around alone in this area.
The girl just shrugged. "Don't have any," she replied very matter-of-factly. "But I do have some information for you, 'Hooded Hero'."
Mike was too shocked to reply as the girl continued, "I hope you're not keeping that name. You gotta admit, it's pretty dumb. But hey, you're the super hero."
Mike finally broke through his surprise and glanced nervously around the diner. At two-thirty in the afternoon, it was past the lunch rush, so it was pretty much empty. "Kid, I don't know what you are talking about."
The little girl just rolled her eyes at him. "My name's Skye. And I know who you are. But I don't really care. I just thought you should know what's coming for you. Since you have powers, you can bet SHIELD will be nosing around for you."
Mike's brow furrowed. "Shield? What shield?"
"No, SHIELD. Secret agency with a stupidly long name. Scary guys in suits, coming to make you disappear. They're the kings of cover ups."
"Then how do you know about any of this?" The kid- Skye- seemed pretty convinced about what she was saying.
She waved away the question. "I'm a hacker, and a dang good one, too. I just thought you should know enough to have a chance to protect yourself. I should get back to my base." She turned to slide out of the booth, but Mike stopped her.
"You have a base?" he asked in amusement.
"Well, it's more of a van. Okay, it's just a van. I live in it, though, so it's sort of a base. It's kept me safe so far anyway."
Mike winced. "You live in a van? Alone?" She'd said she didn't have parents, but he'd thought she had to at least have guardians.
Skye's chin came up in a stubborn expression. "Yeah, so? I manage better on my own anyway. I don't need anyone."
Mike felt conflicted. He wanted to help the kid, but there honestly wasn't much he could do. He looked at her and decided there was at least one thing he could offer. "You eaten yet today?" he asked.
Skye shook her head, still looking defiant. From the look of her, it had probably been a long time since she'd had any semblance of a full meal. "Hey, Cara!" he called over to the waitress.
She came over with a cheerful smile. "Hey, Mike. This one of Ace's friends?"
"Yeah," he lied. "I'm just feeding her before I take her home. Ace forgot he promised to help Mrs. Anders with her dogs today."
Cara laughed. "Well, kids'll be kids. What'll you have?"
"Can we get two cheese burgers with fries, a coffee, and a chocolate milk?" Mike asked.
"Sure thing. That'll be right out." Cara smiled again and left to give their order to the cook.
Mike glanced over at Skye and chuckled at the shocked look on her face. "What? You're my son's age and you're trying to help me. The least I can do is feed you."
Skye just looked at him for a moment before she smiled a bit shyly. "Thanks."
Phil Coulson hummed thoughtfully as he contemplated the podcast had listened to. The voice had been overladen with a mechanical quality, which made it hard to make out any personal qualities, but it was clearly female.
The information had been largely correct, although some had been taken somewhat out of context. Whoever this woman was, she was good. And they needed good. So, Fitz had managed to track the signal, and now Coulson and Ward were on their way to apprehend the hacker.
Okay, so maybe they had a bit of a kidnapping vibe, what with the bag and all, but they didn't plan to hurt her.
As they reached their destination, Coulson frowned. An old van parked in an alleyway. Some kind of base, or did she actually live here? Either way, it seemed she was severely wanting for money, which was a good sign. She had the ability to collect a great deal of money from any of a thousand organizations that would want to buy information that she could obviously find. It seems like their target had more integrity then that.
Coulson stood back as Ward wrenched open the van door and stepped inside. There was a muffled shout, and Ward came out, dragging a struggling figure with him.
A tiny figure.
"Ward," he called out. Ward looked up at him, looking about as baffled as he felt. The child used the distraction to redouble her efforts to pull away from the agent, who instinctively tightened his grip to keep her in place. She let out a small sound of pain, muffled by the bag on her head.
"Ward!" Coulson called again, this time a bit angrily. This was a child, there was no need for that much force. He grabbed the younger agent's arm and pulled him away from the terrified little girl.
"But sir," Ward protested as he lost his grip on the girl's arm, "protocol says to keep contact-"
"The protocol is different for children, Ward!" Coulson interrupted, reaching out to gently guide the trembling little girl to his side. She flinched when he touched her, and Coulson frowned as he heard her gasping for breath, like she couldn't get enough air in. He quickly pulled the bag off her head to help clear her airways and ease her breathing.
He winced at the terrified expression on her face. Intimidating children really made him feel like a bully. How exactly had this op gone so wrong so fast?
"It's okay," he attempted to soothe her. "We won't hurt you." He reached out to lay a hand on her shoulder, but stopped when she flinched away from him.
"Says the … the man … who had me dr- … dragged out of my van with a bag over my head," she replied, gasping between the words. She was gingerly rubbing her arm where Ward had grabbed her, and Coulson could see finger-shaped bruises starting to form on her skin, completely encircling the tiny limb.
He felt an odd mixture of guilt and anger, and turned to glare at Ward. Ward shifted uncomfortably under his gaze, but didn't look like he completely understood why he was in trouble. They really needed to work on his people skills.
"We didn't mean to hurt you," Coulson said, turning back to the girl. "We just need to know about how what information you've been releasing on your broadcasts lately, and what you know about the 'Hooded Hero'."
The girl leveled a glare at him. It was surprisingly fierce, but the over-all effect was ruined by her wheezing breath and the fine tremors Coulson could see running through her clenched fists.
Coulson was really starting to worry about how hard breathing seemed to be for her. "Do you have an inhaler or something?" he asked her. She gave him an incredulous look and shook her head, and his worry deepened. He resolved to take her to Simmons first thing when they arrived at the Bus.
"You're going to have to come with us," he told her calmly, and she looked faintly scared, but unsurprised. She swayed a bit as she started walking, and he laid a hand on her shoulder to steady her. She flinched again, and Coulson's heart clenched. He led her to the SUV, Ward trailing silently behind. He helped her climb inside, wincing as he realized that she was small enough that she really should be in a booster seat.
As she buckled in, Coulson went back to check out the van. Inside was a meager supply of food, a still-running laptop, and a few pillows and a threadbare blanket thrown in the corner. He closed his eyes and sighed deeply, turning back to the SUV. So, she was homeless.
They drove in silence for a few minutes, the girl's ragged breathing the only sound.
"What's your name?" Coulson questioned her.
"Skye," she replied shortly.
"Your real name," Ward snapped before Coulson could respond. He glared at the younger man.
"It's the only name I have." She sounded annoyed by Ward's disbelief.
"Last name?" Coulson prompted, keeping his voice gentle.
He saw Skye shrug in the rear view mirror. "No family, no family name," she said simply. It was clearly something she'd said many times.
"How old are you?"
She was silent for a few moments. Finally, she answered, "I'm not sure. I think I'm seven now, but I could be wrong."
Coulson clenched his teeth as he prepared himself for the answer to his next question. "Where are your guardians?" She had obviously been the only person living in that van.
This time, Skye was silent for so long that Coulson started to think that she wasn't going to answer at all. He had to glare Ward into silence twice when it looked like the younger agent was going to lose patience and snap at the child.
Eventually, Skye let out a sigh, and the world weary sound was utterly out of place coming from such a young girl. "I'm alone." Her voice was so resigned that it broke Coulson's heart. He glanced at Ward to see the other agent biting his lip slightly.
Coulson wanted to keep asking questions, but decided that it could wait until after Simmons ad looked Skye over and given her something to help her. There was still a pronounced wheeze in the girl's breathing.
Skye's breathing got a bit worse as they pulled into the garage on the bus. Coulson got out and walked over to open Skye's door. She was trying to unbuckle her seat belt, but her hands were shaking too much to quite manage it. He unbuckled her himself, and, deciding not to risk letting her wear herself out walking through the bus, he lifted her up into his arms.
Skye gasped and went stiff as he settled her on his hip, but all Coulson could focus on was how worryingly light she was. He'd been able to feel her ribs under his hands as he had lifted her up, and he could feel the ridges of her spine as he lightly rubbed her back, trying to help ease her breathing.
Skye was staring up at him, her brown eyes wide with uncertainty and no small amount of fear. He patted her back gently in an attempt to soothe her. "Your breathing is still bad," he explained. "I'm going to take you to see our doctor and see if she can give you anything to help. I don't want to risk making you worse if I let you walk all that way."
She didn't say anything, but she didn't try to get down, simply staying stiffly in his arms as he carried her up to Fitz-Simmons' lab. He had to knock on the glass door a few times before Fitz looked up from his current project. The look of complete shock on his face when he caught sight of little Skye in Coulson's arms made the corner of Coulson's mouth twitch, and he heard Skye let out a breathless giggle.
"Dr. Simmons," he called as the door opened. The look of surprise that crossed the biochemist's face was almost identical to that of her lab partner.
"Sir?" she questioned uncertainly. She was staring at Skye like the child's presence just did not compute. The little girl squirmed uncertainly in his arms.
"This is Skye," Coulson explained. He couldn't hold back a small smile as she waved shyly at the scientists. He could see Fitz-Simmons' expressions softening at the gesture, and Fitz even waved back at her. "She's having some trouble breathing. I wanted you to have a look at her, see if there's anything you can do to help."
"Of course," the British woman nearly cooed. She took the girl from Coulson's arms and carried her over to the examination table on the other side of the lab.
Coulson felt an odd pang of loss and an urge to snatch Skye back from Simmons' arms as soon as she took her, but he ignored it. Instead, he stood next to Fitz as Simmons gently set the girl on the metal table and took out a stethoscope.
"So," Fitz began, looking over at his boss, "why exactly did you bring a five-year-old here instead of an actual hospital? And how did she end up with you, anyway. I thought you were going to get a hacker."
"She's seven," Coulson corrected absently, watching intently as Simmons examined the girl. "And she is our hacker."
"What, seriously?" Fitz nearly yelped in his surprise. "But she's so tiny."
"Yes, she is," Coulson murmured. They watched in silence for a while as Simmons listened to the girl's breathing and had her blow into a tube.
Finally, Simmons dug into her med kit and pulled out an inhaler. She showed Skye how to use it, and then put an oxygen mask over her face. They only had adult sized masks, so Simmons had to fiddle with the straps for a moment to make it stay in place, and it covered almost the entirety of Skye's face, clear over her eyes.
The woman spoke gently to the child for a moment. Skye nodded in reply, her eyes squinted against the dry oxygen blowing into them through the plastic mask. Simmons smiled and patted the girl's skinny shoulder before walking over to join Fitz and Coulson.
Once she was out of earshot, the normally cheerful woman's expression darkened.
"How is she?" Coulson asked worriedly.
Simmons sighed and shook her head, most of her anger fading off. "She'll be fine," she assured her boss. "She was suffering from a mild asthma attack. She clearly knew how to handle them on her own, but it would still be difficult without proper medication. I gave her some albuterol to ease in inflammation in her lungs and some oxygen to get her levels back up to normal. Why did you bring her here, sir? Any emergency room could have easily handled it."
Coulson sighed. "She's our hacker," he told her. Simmons looked at him in surprise. "I know," he shook his head, still reeling a bit from the information himself. "I don't think any of us were expecting this."
"Where are her parents?" Simmons asked suddenly. "Hacker or not, we can't just kidnap a child from her family because she might be useful to us."
"She doesn't have any family," Coulson replied softly. "Ward and I found her working from an old van parked in an alleyway. It looked like she'd been living there for some time. She's alone." The true weight of those words hit him as he looked over at the too-small form of the child on the table. She was all alone in the world. She could have had a more severe asthma attack and died, and no one would have cared.
Simmons made a sort of sad noise and followed Coulson's gaze to Skye. Fitz's eyes widened in sympathy. "Oh, the poor dear. No wonder she didn't already have an inhaler. What happened to trigger her attack, sir?" she asked her boss.
Coulson felt a rush of shame. "Ward and I scared her when we came to apprehend her. He grabbed her before I could see how young she was and was treating her like an adult prisoner."
She frowned but didn't comment. "How long was it until you got her here?"
"About fifteen minutes."
Simmons was obviously unhappy with that, but apparently decided to stay quiet.
"What's going to happen to her now?" Fitz asked, concerned.
Coulson shook his head. "For now, we're going to let her get cleaned up and give her something to eat. She can clearly use a good meal. And after that, well," he sighted, "we still need to find out what she knows."
He turned and walked over to the girl. "Skye?" he called softly, not wanting to startle her. She looked up at him, still squinting slightly. He smiled gently and moved the mask down off of her eyes. She blinked a few times before focusing slightly reddened eyes on him. "How are you feeling?"
Skye shrugged. "I'm fine." Her voice was muffled through the plastic mask, but her breathing seemed fine now.
Coulson looked at Simmons, who stepped up to Skye's side and listened to her lungs again. She nodded to Coulson and smiled brightly at Skye. "Now we can get rid of this thing," she told the child cheerfully. She slipped the mask off Skye's face and turned the concentrator off. "Now, Skye, do you remember how I showed you to use the inhaler?"
"Good girl," Simmons praised. "Now, I need you to always keep this with you, alright?" She waited until Skye agreed. "And if you start to have trouble breathing again, just put it in your mouth, press the button and breathe in, and then hold your breath for a count of five. Wait a minute or so, then do it again."
Skye nodded her understanding, fingers curled around the inhaler in her pocket. "Thank you," she told Simmons a bit uncertainly, like she honestly didn't know what to make of someone trying to help her. Coulson did not like the implications that held for her life so far.
Simmons was obviously having similar thoughts as she smiled sadly at the little girl. "You're welcome, sweetie."
"What do you say we go get you something to eat?" Coulson asked her, forcing his voice to stay light. Skye eyed him nervously for a moment, clearly still uncertain about his intentions. But her stomach gave an audible growl, and Coulson forced a chuckle. "Sounds like your belly likes that plan, huh? Come on," He reached down and picked her back up onto his hip, wrapping one arm under her bottom to hold her up.
Skye went stiff again, but didn't seem overly frightened, so Coulson decided to take it as a success. He listened carefully to her breathing for a moment to make sure she wasn't going to have another asthma attack, but relaxed and started walking when her breathing remained unlabored.
He took her to the bathroom first, so that she could get cleaned up a bit. She came out with her face scrubbed clean and her hair a bit damp and slightly neater. He picked her up again and carried her to the kitchen.
To his surprise. Fitz was there waiting for them, a plate already mostly made up for Skye. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich, carrot sticks, and a glass of milk were sitting on the table, and Fitz was just finishing cutting up an apple for her.
Coulson set Skye down in a chair at the table as Fitz put the sliced apple on the plate and slid it in front of her. "There you go," he said cheerfully. "Hope you like PB&J."
Skye nodded and blinked up at him before asking, "What kind of jelly is it?"
"Grape," Fitz replied. "My personal favorite."
Coulson smiled approvingly at his team member and patted his shoulder as he passed him to grab some napkins. "Thank you," Skye said to Fitz in that same uncertain tone, like she was confused about what exactly was going on, but thought she should be polite anyway.
"You're most welcome, Skye," Fitz replied.
Skye ate slowly, glancing warily at the two men like she thought they would try to take her food away. Her bites were measured carefully, making sure she wouldn't accidently overload her stomach and make herself sick. She was used to being hungry.
Coulson caught sight of May watching silently from the doorway, eyes fixed on the little girl, expression characteristically blank. She met his eye and nodded shortly before turning away and heading in the direction of the cockpit.
Coulson smiled. It was good to know that, however he decided to help Skye, he would have May's support.
He sat down next to Skye as she finished eating, and Fitz headed back to the lab after ruffling Skye's hair lightly and nodding to Coulson. "Well, Skye," he began, keeping his voice friendly, "what can you tell me about the 'Hooded Hero'?"
Skye looked at him with a raised brow. "Why? So you can kidnap him? Cover up Centipede and make anyone who knows about it disappear?"
"Centipede?" Coulson asked blankly. Skye looked at him like he was being purposely stupid before giggling softly.
Oh, my gosh, you don't know, do you? You don't know what that is."
"No, I don't," Coulson agreed honestly.
"Wow," Skye was still giggling, "all your money and resources, and I beat you from my van with a laptop I won in a bet?" she sounded faintly incredulous, and Coulson could see her point. But he couldn't help being even more impressed with her skills.
A plan started to form in his mind, even as he continued to ask questions.
Skye watched the SHIELD people work from her perch on a metal stool that Agent Coulson had set her on. She really hoped she had done the right thing by telling them what she knew about Mike Peterson. They'd been kind to her so far- frankly more kind then she can remember just about anyone being to her, aside from Miles and Mr. Peterson himself. If she could help him back by sending the right people to him, she owed it to him to try.
She watched as the woman who gave her the inhaler and the man who gave her the food talked about camera footage. The holograms were awesome, but the picture quality sucked.
"I have the audio," she found herself offering. "I hacked into their security cameras weeks ago to keep an eye out." They had both been kind to her, so she was happy to help them if she could.
She couldn't quite understand what they said after that, but she thought they'd agreed that would be helpful.
"We have your computer here," Coulson informed her. "But we couldn't decrypt anything in it."
Skye nodded. "It's GPS locked," she informed him. "It'll only work in my van."
Coulson nodded looking faintly impressed. The scientists were too busy to really pay attention to anything else, and Ward was standing in the background with what Skye thought of as full-on 'Agent Face.' She didn't like that. It was scarily close to the full-on 'Nun Face' that she had grown up with.
"Agent May will take you," Coulson told her.
Skye turned around to see who Agent May was and saw a slightly scary looking older woman standing in the doorway. She nodded to Agent Coulson and looked at Skye expectantly. Skye scrambled to hop off the stool and nearly fell off in her haste to obey the woman's unspoken command. Bad things had happened when she'd kept Sister Margaret waiting when she'd had that expression.
Agent Coulson caught her before she could fall and lifted her down and set her on her feet. She nodded thankfully at the man, though she was still confused about why he kept picking her up.
The ride with Agent May was silent. May didn't seem like the talkative type, and Skye didn't want to risk annoying her. She was relieved when they reached her van. Skye hurried over to it, happy to be back to the familiar sight. May followed her, and Skye could feel the judgment coming off of the woman, but as they climbed in to the van May merely commented, "This seems dangerous. It's hard enough to survive as a homeless adult, much less as a child."
Her voice was mild, but Skye had to bite her tongue to keep from saying something stupid. 'Keep quiet, Skye,' she thought. 'Remember how Sister Margaret punished you for being mouthy.' Her stomach churned slightly at the memory.
"I'm not homeless," she made sure to keep her tone polite. "I live here. Trust me, having a door to lock makes all the difference."
May was silent as Skye finished sending the data to Fitz. She turned to the agent. "There. That's all the info I got on Centipede. Now, can we-"
Skye was broken off as the door to her van was wrenched open, revealing Mike Peterson. He grabbed May and threw her against the wall, knocking her unconscious. He turned back to Skye.
"What are you doing?" Skye gasped. She felt the familiar sensation of her lungs starting to refuse to cooperate with the rest of her, making it hard to breathe. Without thinking about it, she took in a deep breath and held it, forcing her lungs to take in the oxygen the way she'd figured out years ago to help herself.
"I'm rescuing you," Mike replied, sounding out of breath as well. "Now you need to help us."
"Us?" she repeated, and he pulled a boy into the doorway with him. He was probably a little older then her, and he was obviously pretty scared. His son, Skye remembered. Ace.
"Don't cry," Mike told his son. "We're a team, remember?"
He lifted Ace into the van next to Skye and shut the door before climbing into the driver's seat. "Hold on. We're getting out of here."
Coulson paced his office, trying to think. He refused to just kill Mike Peterson. He was a good man, and a father. He didn't deserve to die.
But neither did the people around him. If person blew, everyone in a three-block radius would be killed. He hoped desperately that Fitz-Simmons figured out a way to stop that from happening.
His thoughts were interrupted when his phone rang. "Coulson."
"Mike Peterson took Skye," May reported. Coulson felt his blood run cold. Skye. That tiny little girl was being held hostage by a mentally unstable man who could literally explode at any time.
"Are you okay?" he asked, because there was no way that May had let that child be taken without a fight. "It wasn't supposed to be a field op," he added, knowing that she would read the apology between the lines.
"We will be discussing that later," oh yeah, May was annoyed. "At length."
Coulson hung up his phone and hurried down to the lab. He arrived in time to see the monitors begin to flash.
"What is this non-sense? Stop making non-sense!" Simmons demanded of Fitz. She really needed to work on her grace under pressure.
"It isn't me!" Fitz insisted. "Someone's hacked our systems."
Coulson looked at the information appearing on the screens and felt a rush of utter relief. 'Oh, you clever girl,' he thought with a grin.
"It's Skye," he said aloud to the shocked scientists. "Latitude and longitude. Mike Peterson took her, she's telling us where."
He left Fitz-Simmons to finish their job and got into a SHIELD SUV, along with Ward. They were both silent as they drove to the train station. When they arrived, they got out and approached Skye's van in the parking lot.
Coulson had to dodge quickly as Mike tore the door off the van and hurled it at the agents. He caught sight of Mike carrying his son through the crowd, dragging Skye along by the arm.
By the time Coulson and Ward enter the building, everything was in total chaos. Mike had gone crazy, throwing benches and people around like they were rag dolls. Ward tried to stop him, but he simply threw the agent into the wall.
In the commotion, Skye and Mike's son had managed to get lost in the crowd. Ace was trying to help Skye keep from getting trampled as the smaller child lagged, gasping for breath. Coulson caught up to them quickly, dodging around panicked civilians. He scooped Skye up into his arms and hurried Ace over to some nearby agents.
"I want my daddy," the boy whimpered as he was hurried away.
"I know," Coulson replied simply before turning to the girl on his hip, who was still wheezing as she struggled to breathe. "Do you have your inhaler?" he asked her urgently.
She nodded and pulled the device out of her pocket. He helped her raise it to her mouth as she took a puff. Her breathing deepened and started to even out when they heard the gun shot. Coulson pulled Skye into his chest and leaned over slightly to make sure his body completely protected hers.
He looked around urgently, as he called Ward ono the com. "Ward!" he snapped.
"Wasn't me, sir," his agent replied. Coulson nodded briskly and called May.
"May, we've got a third party."
Coulson adjusted Skye back onto his hip. "Take your second puff, sweetheart," he reminded her gently.
She gave him a weird look at the pet name, but did as she was she was told. Then she laid her head down on Coulson's shoulder to concentrate on getting her breath back. He ran a hand lightly over her hair.
When Mike fell, Coulson turned to face him. He set Skye down, and the child clung to his leg, hiding half behind him. Coulson clenched his teeth, even more anxious to get out of this without having to order the shot on Mike. Skye was far too young to see something like that.
When Ward finally had to take the shot, Coulson picked Skye up again quickly, pressing her face against his shoulder to keep her from seeing anything. He was so relieved when Simmons told him it was just a tranquilizer. He would be just fine.
He moved his hand off of the back of Skye's head so that she could pull her face away, and she looked up and him anxiously. He smiled at her. "It's okay," he assured her, kissing her temple.
She gave him another one of her heart-breakingly confused looks at the affectionate gesture, so he kissed her forehead and bounced her lightly on his hip, making her giggle. She promptly froze, looking completely confused by her own reactions.
Coulson smiled sadly at the girl and carried her out to the SUV.
Coulson waited for Skye to finish saying her goodbyes to Ace before leading the girl to Lola. He gestured for her to sit beside him in the front seat, then got in beside her. Her expression had gone completely blank. She looked up at him like she was waiting for her own execution, and had long since given up hope of repeal.
He hated that look, and what it said about her life so far. "So, now what?" she asked, her voice empty.
Coulson raised his brow. "What do you mean?"
Skye gave him a look that clearly said 'cut the crap'. "You know what I mean. You're either gonna let me go back to where I was before and pretend you never saw me- which I don't think you will. You seem more like a Good Samaritan type. Plus Mike broke my van, so I don't even have that much of a home anymore. Or you'll dump me back in the system until I have to run away again and start all over again from scratch."
Coulson regarded her sadly for a moment. She was far too young to be so cynical. But he was happy to put his plan into action and offer her a third plan.
"Actually," he began, smiling at the look of surprise on her face, "I was thinking about keeping you."
Skye's expression flickered to pure shock before going blank again. "Nobody ever keeps me," she stated, her voice empty and hopeless. "I'm bad. That's why I'm alone."
"Well," Coulson replied after swallowing his emotions again, "you have some very useful skills, Skye. You managed to completely erase yourself from all records, as well as hack us from a van. If you agree to stay with us, you'll have a home, someone to take care of you, and you can use your computer skills to help people."
He could see tears in her eyes. He reached over and rubbed her back, smiling gently. "I want to help you, Skye. If you agree, I'll take custody of you. I'll get all the paper work to make sure it's legal and that nobody can make you leave. You don't have to be alone anymore, Skye."
Her tears started to fall, and he reached over and pulled her onto his lap, rocking her lightly. Skye remained still in his arms, staring down. Finally, she looked up at him. "Okay," she whispered. "Okay."
Coulson let the utter relief and joy show on his face as he squeezed her gently, continuing to rock her. She stayed stiff, but they was okay. They had time to work on that. He could, and would, be patient with her. She would be stuck with him for at least the next eleven years. Yes, they had time. And he would use every bit of it to help her.
He was brought back to the present when Ward called about a possible 0-8-4. Skye was looking up at him curiously as he ended the call. He smiled and kissed her forehead before lifting her up and over the back of the seat into Lola's backseat. "Buckle up," he told her with a grin. "We're headed home." He activated the thrusters and pulled up into the air. Skye's whoops of surprise and laughter were music to his ears as they headed back to the Bus.
A/N So, what do you think? This is just an idea that I got in my head. I decided to put up the first chapter and see how people liked it. Please, if you'd like to read more of this, let me know. I have ideas for more chapters, so if there's enough interest, I'll keep it going. So, read and Review.