"All right, I've stabilized him enough," Bruce said through the comm, to no one in particular, as he finished bandaging up the man that took so much of his attention earlier.

"Will he live?" Natasha asked, a strain to her voice.

Bruce sighed, wiping sweat from his brow. "Yeah, hopefully. If we can get this war over with soon and get him to a doctor. I did the best I could but his appendix is inflamed. So I don't know..."

Tony shouted gleefully, making most of the team flinch, the piercing sound reverberating through their ears. "What the hell was that? Please tell me you didn't just see Bieber or anything," Clint said, irritated, but with a smile in his voice.

"Oh, I'm done with my men. Does anyone need help or do we want me to help Thor with Loki?"

"Actually," Bruce said, his voice slightly over shadowing the others', "can you check on Pepper? I don't like leaving Darcia all alone up there."

"Right-O, Doc." And with a flash of light and flamboyance, Tony flew into the sky towards the White House.

Bruce looked around. Most of the enemy was detained and he could hear his teammate's breathing heavy in his ears as they finished off their opposers. "Do you need any help, any of you?"

A loud grunt was heard from Natasha and then a thud before she spoke. "Nah, I'm almost done over here. Barton?"

"There's..." a strained silence, "a man who..." a grunt, "might need some damn stitches if he doesn't fucking fall already!" Clint replied, making the others sigh, before a loud bang was heard and the archer finally sighed with relief. "Nevermind."

"Captain...?" Bruce asked, almost afraid to hear what might be said.

"Go check on her, Doctor. We've almost taken care of it. Thor, have you seen Loki lately?" Steve said, sounding as if he only just took a stroll in the park rather than currently fighting three high ranking militia men.

"Nay. He has disappeared again. But I have more than two eyes open right now. We will catch him soon enough."

Bruce nodded and took that as his cue to leave the wreckage and passed out bodies to go see his girlfriend. There was no one near him, which was a good enough sign for them at the moment; he would worry about Loki when he was done worrying about Darcia. A scowl aligned his face as he jogged towards Lincoln. This is one of the reasons he never tried to get acquainted with anyone closely. All of his thoughts were of her, it was often hard to concentrate. He needed to have full clarity of his mind if he wanted to keep a cap on the Hulk and an eye for Loki. With a sigh, he shook his head, having just reached the top of the stairs of the Memorial, emptying his mind just for a moment so he could focus on his lover. The blood on her face dried and she looked like she was having an internal battle, though no part of her ever moved. Bruce moved some of her fallen hair out of her face and took her wrist for her pulse, noticing how stiff she was getting. He silently cursed and before speaking in his comm, checked all of her other vital stats. "Tony, anything?"

There was a brief silence before the billionaire responded. "Uh, sorry, I was...detained." Cough. "The serum should be here any second aaaand speak of the devil, that might be it. Could be a bomb though, not sure at this- ah, point." Long breath out. "Yep, that's it. I'm over there." And with a side whisper not meant for the others to hear, "I'll be back as soon as I can, Pep. Keep a good eye on the president."

Bruce rolled his eyes and was going to speak but Steve got to it first. "Hurry it up, Stark."

"I'm coming, jeeze!" And after a snicker heard from both him and Pepper, Tony actually left, flying towards Bruce and Darcia. He landed within seconds, as if he didn't come nearly two miles. His helmet flipped open to reveal a sweaty, flushed face. "How's she holding?"

"Would be better if we had that antidote sooner, but now's better than never."

"Is that attitude, Banner? That's my job, you know. Leave it to the pros," Tony managed to tease, earning a scowl from the other man, before he tossed the bottle to the doctor. There was a brief silence as Bruce examined the tiny vial of clear liquid. "She will...?"

"Yeah, she will..." Bruce whispered, uncorking the vial.

"You know," Tony breathed, an unbelieving laugh in his voice, "if Barton were here, he'd make another Harry Potter joke or something about that." The man sat down next to Darcia, worry etched all over his face, barely concealed by fake humor.

"Yeah," the other man replied, just as quiet. "Yeah, probably." Silence. "Well, here goes nothing." Bruce lifted the vial to examine it one last time before furrowing his eyebrows.

"She drinks it," Tony offered.

"Of course." And with that, Bruce grabbed Darcia's face and opened her mouth for her, before tilting back her head and forcing the gooey substance down her throat. He and Tony sat back, watching anxiously for any sign of life. Seconds turned to minutes, their teammates' shouts of victory being ignored as they waited impatiently. "This is taking too long. Shit, shit, this is taking too long. Tony-"

"Give it a few more minutes. She was pretty out," Tony whispered, though just as worried as the doctor. And he complied, watching his girlfriend like a hawk, looking for anything that changed. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, she twitched and her body relaxed, a long sigh coming out of her mouth.

"Oh, thank god. Thank you..." Bruce whispered, reaching down to grab Darcia's hand in his.

Tony let out a breath he didn't know he was holding and relaxed against the pillar, his eyes closing for a brief moment. Her eyes slowly opened, lidded and unfocused, but there, and with as much strength as she had, she squeezed the doctor's hand and cracked a bloody smile. "Hey."

He grinned and kissed her softly, uncharacteristically overtaken by emotion. "Hey," he replied, "how are you feeling?"

"Oh like hell. Twice over and left in the oven to brown."

Tony laughed outright, taking Darcia's forehead to kiss it, and shaking his head. "Where on Earth did you hear that, woman?"

She let out a chuckle. "Some country boy turned lieutenant said that at one point today." The three of them shared a laugh and were met with even more relief when the others commed in.

"That bastard's army is down," Clint said, a grin in his voice.

Thor was next to reply, landing in front of Natasha and Steve, stress aligning his eyes. "Let us take a break. There is no use in searching for Loki blind. You would have more luck slaying the Balrog with one hand tied behind your back."

There was a brief silence. "Thor, you know about the Balrog?" Clint asked, incredulous.

"Is that correct? I watched a movie with little people and a wizard that victoriously fought a demon called the Balrog. Am I mistaken?"

"Are you talking about Lord of the Rings?" Tony inquired.

"I know what that is! I saw it with him!" Steve gleamed.

Natasha rolled her eyes and plopped down on top of some general, stretching out her legs. "That's great, Cap."

They all laughed and Darcia realized that she was feeling better as time went on, whatever potion JARVIS concocted miraculously working. "I could really go for a pastry right now. Actually, there's this great place off of Virginia that sells the best macaroons you'll ever have," she said, playing with Bruce's fingers. He cracked a smile at her but she could see that now that she was better, he was slowly reverting back to his old, cautious self. She frowned.

"I don't like macaroons. Never sat with me well," Tony quipped, shrugging half-heartedly. "But I am hungry. If only God of Ass would ever show up so I can eat something..."

Clint barked out a laugh. "Come join the party and quit your threesome. Maybe "Silver Tongue" will come to us if we're all together. I'd like a burger."

"How do you always crave burgers after you fight?" Natasha asked, though not entirely interested.

"No idea."

Tony stood up and looked down at his long time friend. "Do you need any help?"

"Dunno yet," she said. "Lemme see." She removed her hands from Bruce and placed them palm down on the ground and with a deep breath, pushed herself up. She had to steady herself on both Bruce and the pillar behind her, but for the most part, it was an impressive amount of strength for a recent near-corpse. "Might need help walking," she laughed. "But other than that, I'm good. Yeah, I'm good."

Bruce eyed her warily. "That's impressive. I didn't expect this much strength from you so soon."

"She's got a lot of fight," Tony said, and for some reason, Bruce thought he felt a sort of hostility radiating from the other man. "Come on, Darcia. You need to be fighting fit for Ass-Hat, wherever he is." Tony grabbed one of her arms and Bruce helped himself to the other, deep in thought, and together, the three of them made their way to their team.


"What time is it?" Darcia asked, casually running her hand through the burnt grass. Pepper sent a drone over them not too long ago, dropping off food for them and the handful of soldiers that did almost no good during the battle, and now they were all waiting for whatever was going to happen next.

"Seven."

Her head snapped towards Tony. "Seven in the night?"

"Morning," he shrugged nonchalantly.

"What? Really?"

He chuckled. "No, not really. Seven P.M. Though it has gotten dark pretty fast..."

"It's been dark all day," Natasha said ominously.

"True," they all agreed, looking in separate directions.

Clint groaned loudly and fell backwards on to the ground. "I'm so bored! Jesus I wish he'd just hurry the hell up."

"Has anyone ever told you you act like a child sometimes?" Steve asked, tossing a piece of marble across the field.

"Everyday."

They all laughed, Tony throwing a random piece of debris at Clint and saying, "Fetch boy!"

"I'm not a dog, Stark!" he huffed, throwing it back at the billionaire, causing more laughter.

"Loki!" Tony yelled out lazily. "You need to keep control of your dinner guests!"

"Loki! I want my dessert now!" Darcia shouted, laughing. Then came the repeated shouting of Loki's name to the sky, followed by laughter and outrageous requests of the Norse God.

Thor's booming voice calmed them all down, and it seemed as if the whole town went silent and the reality of their situation pressed on them. "LOKI! Come out and play!"

It was like there was an echo following his words, though it didn't match what he said, it was just as grave. "Come out, come out, wherever you are..." No one spoke, they all just stared at each other, laughter gone, frowns on their faces, and the sky seemed to get darker. "Come out, come out, wherever you are..." was reverberated, slightly louder, though nonetheless scary. "Your wish is my command." They jumped up, looking for the man with the slick voice. They were met with a loud roar and a monster with one eye.


(A/N: OMG. Guys, I am so, so, so, so, so, SO unbelievably sorry! School was awful this past term and I got more hours at work because an employee quit so I literally had NO time to even consider writing. I've just recently been getting myself back into the swing of things these past couple of days. I feel absolutely horrible. And my break is almost over so if I don't finish this story by then, I'm afraid it'll have to wait until spring or summer break. I wanted to finish it this past summer but didn't have the time because of work. I feel awful right now. Things will pick up. I've got everything planned out and I'm working on getting this blasted war scene over with because I hate writing battles (as you can tell) and then everything will be easy-peazy lemon squeezy. Promise. I'll have fun chapters coming out left and right. Guh. Thanks to those that have stayed with me and I really hope you don't hate me forever. I see these stories with sequels and feel awful because I didn't even finish mine yet! It's fine. It's okay. It'll be done soon. I swear.)