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Edited by the mighty pazed!
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Harry stood from his crouch, adjusting his long coat as he did, while a small smirk played across his lips hidden by his full face balaclava. "Got ya'!" he said quietly as he began running toward the edge of the building.
Without stopping he flung himself into the night air. "Aresto Momentum," he muttered as his wand slid into his hand with a thought, causing his downward momentum to slow and allowing him to glide easily across the wide multi-laned street below onto the roof of the museum.
Just as quickly as it had appeared his wand was gone again when he landed, crouching with his eyes scanning the roof and his ears straining for the smallest sound.
The creak of metal across metal set him in motion in a low lope across the rooftop, moving from shadow to shadow. "This would be so much easier with my cloak…" he muttered under his breath. "But there are to many security cameras around here… it would be difficult to explain if I just popped out of nowhere…"
He watched, with a small smirk, from the shadows as a dark foot disappeared into the ventilation system.
Following his quarry's lead he gave them a moment then made his way inside as well.
So this was the 'Shadow Thief', he thought as he made his way down the hallway, watching as the leather clad woman worked. Moving closer, he studied her. She stood somewhere between 167 to 176cm (5ft 6in to 5ft 8in), and seemed to be in excellent physical shape, given the way her tight leather hugged the contours of her body. Her head was covered and a set of gleaming goggles hid her eyes. In her hand she held the Star of Latvia, a flawless diamond larger than a man's thumb, and worth millions.
"I'm afraid I will need you to place the diamond back in the case," he said, stepping out of the shadows and triggering the security doors manually, sending them crashing to the ground behind him blocking her escape.
If she was surprised by his presence she didn't show it, as she continued to admire her prize under the moonlight. "Beautiful is it not?" she asked. After a moment she tore her eyes from it and moved them to her challenger.
"Ah! The infamous Union Jack!" she said, with an almost happy note. "I was wondering who had been on my trail."
"I expect the Yard has been as well," he said, stepping forward, carefully. Something was wrong here.
"Oh, I know they were. but they are so predictable," she said with a flip of her wrist for emphasis. "They aren't very difficult to distract, or evade… Will you prove to be a better adversary? Especially seeing as you are on the run from them now as well."
The way she was speaking bothered him, she had a plan. 'Was there something I missed?' he thought.
Stopping, he quickly scanned their surroundings, he couldn't see anything. "Just put the diamond down and put your hands up. I don't-"
She was suddenly a blur of movement, coming toward him. His eyes widened at her remarkable speed. Even as his right hand freed his pistol and brought it to bear, she had closed the distance to him, all thirty feet in the time it had taken for him to aim!
Stopping just inches from the barrel, he could see a smile form in the shadows of her cowl. "Oooh! You are quick! This will be fun!" she said, as she flipped backward bringing her foot into contact with his pistol just as the red colored shot rang from it, pushing it overhead and sending the pistol tumbling away, to drop to the floor a short distance away, at the end of its lanyard.
Harry dodged the crescent kick that followed, his hand wrapping around the small cord that connected his pistol to his belt, and gave it a jerk. His seeker reflexes would have been enough before, but now with his abilities augmented by the Super Soldier and Infinity formulas, allowing him to track it in mid-air and move his hand in such a way that he would be able to pluck it ready out of the air was child's play.
"No! None of that!" yelled a voice, as a flash of moonlight caught on a silver sliver on the woman's heel as her dropkick flashed trough the air just beyond his fingers.
His eyes widened as the cable was severed neatly and his pistol skittered away across the floor.
His opponent waggled a finger at him. "I don't much care for firearms," she said with a hiss. "Even one as non-lethal as yours my dear Jack." She backed off a step. "Besides they tend to skew a contest such as the one I wish to have with you!" Suddenly she was a blur of movement again.
With a grunt he took the impact of her sweeping kick on his forearm and shoulder.
He was impressed. He had learned much over the last few years training with Steve and Natasha. This woman, she was quick, and had an explosively powerful kick.
She backed off again, shaking her leg. "What are you made of luv?" she asked in surprise. "Iron?"
"Nope, just flesh and blood," he said, intersecting her next kick with a lifted knee in a muay thai style, then catching her in the stomach with a rabbit punch.
He could hear the happiness in her voice as she spoke. "So you're not afraid to hit a lady."
He chuckled under his breath as they circled, "I know many that would make my life unbearable if I thought like that… besides Ladies aren't thieves."
"Oh now you're just being mean!" she chided, as they once again traded blows.
Sirens sounded and lights could now be seen reflecting in the marble. The woman dropped her stance. "It seems we have run out of time for our dance," she said lightly. "Shall we call this one a draw?"
"If you leave the stone and you give up, sure," he said, standing straighter and turning to face her.
"Can't do that love," she said, a smirk playing over lips hidden in her cowl.
"Then it is time we end this," he said as a small package dropped into his hand from the sleeve of his coat and into his palm.
With a flip of his wrist a black box hit her chest and popped open, wrapping her in metallic cords.
Her head snapped back in surprise. "What?" She stumbled as they pulled tight around her legs, falling to the floor.
He shrugged and said, "Restraining bands," as he walked over and retrieved his pistol. "They will hold you till the bobbies have you in a holding cell."
He could tell she was glaring at him as he slid the pistol home, and approached her. "And I'll just take that," he said, pulling the diamond from the pocket where she had placed it.
He put the diamond back in the case, stepping between her and the case as he did and cast a quiet 'reparo' on the cut ballistic glass, sealing it shut again.
Smiling behind his mask he turned toward her again, only to find her standing next to the broken bonds, glowering at him, her cowl down and goggles off.
She was stunning! Her long auburn hair, with red highlights, cascaded around her shoulders and her grey eyes sparkled. "You have cost me my prize tonight, Jack!" she growled. "Next time won't be so easy!" she said as she shot into the air, stopping just below the skylight, her hair floating in the currents around her. "Next time HEARTBREAKER WINS!" she yelled.
He watched, stunned, as she made two wide sweeping kicks with her heels, slicing cleanly through the reinforced steel and ballistic glass above them. It crashed to the floor and she flew into the night.
"Damn…" he said, coming to himself and making his escape.
"Home sweet home…" he said, stepping into No. 12 Grimmauld Place. He walked down the short entryway, past the now replaced wall Walburga Black's annoying painting had once hung on and into the kitchen.
He pulled his mask and gauntlets off and placed them on the table, soon followed by his coat and combat belt. As soon as they were all in a pile they disappeared. He smiled. "Thank you Winky… I used a restraint pod, could you replace it please…. Oh, and could you repair the lanyard on my pistol?"
There was a quiet, "As you wish Master Harry, dinner is on the table… They was here again… outside," the house elf whispered, tugging on her dress.
He sighed. "Who?"
"Masters, large ex-miss… and Mr. Dane," she said, looking down.
"Did they stay long?" he asked, sitting.
She shook here head. "No, sir," she said. "They stayed in the park across the street for just a few minutes…"
"Good." He nodded as he began to eat. "That means she can remember there was something here but she can't see it… the new Fidelius is working… I'll need to thank Luna for her help… is Jackie awake?"
"She is showering now and will be down shortly," Winky said, moving to the stove. "I informed her of Master's return, she will be down for dinner soon."
Harry nodded and continued with his meal, his mind drifting back through the events of the last few years.
It was easy when it started. Every chance they had, Steve or Natasha came and helped them train and Tony even dropped in every so often. Hermione and he were dating while going to Uni and they helped the Wizarding World start to restructure. They even helped out the government several times on missions as part of STORM (Strategic Threat Observation, Retaliation or Mitigation) … Then things began to fall apart.
Harley decided she had had enough of being a renegade then hero, she had met someone that was working with the visiting Jane Foster when she was giving a talk at Cambridge. Her name was Darcy. They had become fast friends though he didn't know if it was more, and with her unique understanding of parallel dimensions she had been asked to join Jane's team.
Dane's time was being taken up more and more with his expanding duties as the Black Knight to Avalon, both the mystical place and the developing STORM division. He was just not available as often.
Then there was Hermione…
Things between them had been great, as far as he was concerned. She had decided to study law and had set out to achieve her goal just as she did every academic achievement she had set her sights on,while he had taken a bit more time before he started on an electrical engineering degree.
They had spent as much time together as their schedules allowed, just enjoying being together even if much of that time was spent studying..
All of that changed one night when they had taken the next step in their relationship.
Harry had cooked her favorite dinner, arranged everything to be perfect, and asked her to marry him. She had said yes…
And for the first time they went to bed together…
That was when they found out her control of her powers was not as perfect as they had believed it was. He had spent hours at St. Mungo's.
The simple truth was they could not have that form of intimacy. Evidently sexual excitement would trigger her change just like anger, and in her other form her Hulk-like strength just would not allow it, even the slightest lapse in her concentration would see him injured.
Harry had tried to convince her that it didn't matter, that it was not something that should stand in their way… but it was something she was convinced he deserved and she could not give.
From there on they had drifted apart little by little.
Then the Moldova incident happened.
It almost felt like a dream now, he had watched it happen on the news, unable to get clearance from STORM to help.
That was the day he and Spitfire had left; they were no longer going to be told who or when they could help!
Now there was this crap with the accords… Hermione and Dane had been pressuring them to sign, to do things legally and yesterday had been the last day before the deadline. So now, after going out in costume tonight, his choice had been made, his die was cast. He was a renegade from the law again, hunted this time by both worlds, Magical and Non, for doing what he felt was right.
Here was the only place it was safe, his Godfather's old home protected by a new Fidelius charm, whose secret keeper was one who, even if Hermione could find her in her travels, she would be unable to bring herself to force the secret out of … Luna Lovegood.
Jackie stepped into the kitchen. "So? How did it go?" she asked, sitting at the table.
Harry shrugged. "The 'Shadow Thief' didn't get the diamond… But she got away," he said between bites.
"She?" Jackie asked.
He nodded again. "I got a good look at her, and her name… She called herself Heartbreaker."
Jackie's eyebrow raised. "Heartbreaker?" she asked. "How did she get away?"
He chuckled. "She flew."
Jackie looked even more surprised. "Flew?"
"Yeah. She's fast too, not as fast as you, but fast, and she has these wickedly sharp heels on her boots, she cut through the reinforced skylight by kicking with them."
Jackie let out a low whistle. "That could be dangerous," she said, taking her first bite.
Harry shrugged again. "True, but the way she acted, and fought… She disarmed me of my pistol, then wanted to fight me evenly, hand to hand… I don't think she wants to hurt or kill anyone… I think she likes the challenge."
"You still shouldn't underestimate her Harry," she said as she continued to eat.
"Yeah, I know. Thanks Mum," he said with a smirk.
She threw her napkin at him, her lips in a small smile.