The poor staff at the Brooklyn Denny's wasn't expecting a hoard of paint stained, exhausted special ops to fill every table. The team sat together while Darcy broke off with the other interns at a different booth.

"May I get some more coffee, please?" Natasha raised her hand to flag down a waitress in the fray. Nobody but Pepper noticed the sparkling emerald on her finger.

"Agent Romanoff, what is that?!" She squeaked. Natasha winked and gestured slightly to Clint. Pepper grinned in reply.

"Did I miss something? What exactly happened after I died?" Tony asked, looking up from his grand slam at his wife and the two lovesick agents.
"Congrats, Darce!" Jo elbowed her colleague and gulped her iced tea. "Except the murdering psychopath love interest thing is kind of..."

"Weird, I know." Darcy replied, taking a bite of her blueberry pancakes. "I'm honestly still confused about what to do. I mean, he's-"

"I'm what?" Loki pulled out his chair and returned to his seat.

"Absolutely bonkers." Jo said pointedly, squirting ketchup onto her omelet. Darcy shot her a panicked look as Loki smirked, and suddenly Jo's breakfast was a live, squawking chicken.

"WOAH" Jo screamed, falling out of her chair. Darcy burst out laughing while Loki sipped his coffee.

"Never forget, mortal child, that I am a God of Asgard."

Jo grasped the table and hoisted herself up, glaring at Loki.

"Darce, just because you're shagging the prisoner doesn't mean you should forego tasing duty!"

"My taser isn't street legal within city limits. Sorry, Giles!" Darcy choked between laughs.

After a short cab ride home, Darcy staggered back into her apartment, leaning on Loki for support. She had one of the S.H.I.E.L.D medics examine her injury. While not serious, one of the faster paintballs had bruised a ligament near her pelvic bone, and would 'hurt like a mother' (what Darcy took as a technical medical term,) for about two days. Loki helped her get situated with an ice pack on the bed.

"My dear, please note that the next time I lay you on this bed, it will be for a completely different reason." Loki grinned.

Darcy smiled, popping two advil and taking in the familiar comfort of her target sheets. "Man, I don't want to go to...CRAP."

In a flurry of blankets and pillows, Darcy sprung out of bed and dashed towards her computer.

"What is it?"


She staggered to her desktop and hit the power button.
"C'mon, start up, damn you!"

"Slow down, your injury needs-"
"NOT WHEN MY FUTURE IS DUE IN NINE HOURS!" She wailed, furiously opening a new word document and scrambling for her binder. At least the entire ordeal left her with an awesome thesis, even if it didn't quite fit the rubric.

The Art of Paintball:
How Sun Tsu's philosophies translate into Simulated Modern Warfare

By Darcy Lewis.

So that's it! Thank you so much for bearing with my little fanfiction experiment. Stay tuned because I'm participating in the Tasertricks Halloween exchange, AND working on a new story. You have been such great readers! I have loved all your kind comments and follows. You all are absolutely the best. Love, DC.