Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Marvel or it's various characters...yet
This is a fic I've had in my head for a while. This is the first chapter that I have completed, depending on the attention this gets I may not continue so be sure to review or follow if you want to read more!
The windowless, padded, room that had presumably been white had faded to a dull grey, with some suspicious looking brown spots spattered about that Tony prayed were rust. The orange scrubs he had been given were two sizes too small, placing light pressure on the protruding arc reactor. No significant discomfort was caused by the tight fabric, but it was enough to distract his thoughts from time to time. The men escorting him wore white button down shirts tucked into their too-starched tan slacks that were just tight enough for Tony to see the stick riding up their asses.
"You guys got a coffee maker around here? Gotta get my five a day."
"Mr. Stark, five a day refers to vegetables."
"Coffee comes from a bean that was at one point green." He stated innocently.
The doe-eyed scientist already looked exasperated with the billionaire after a mere five minutes, and his bosses wanted him to work with Tony for how long? "From this point on you will speak only when spoken too. You will be provided with adequate nutrition." he said formally, while his pen scratched notes on his clipboard. Gesturing to a man that more closely resembled one of the mysterious Easter Island heads than a person, he gave the order "Remove his shackles".
"Thanks, I'm glad you didn't take them off earlier, I could almost still feel my fingertips." Tony glared.
Without any instruction, the suits left, closing the hermetically sealed door behind them.
"Calm down guys, no need to be so chatty." The easy going look that had been pasted on the billionaire's face during this ordeal fell with the latch on the cell door.
He took this opportunity alone to scan the room. A florescent light encased in steel lattice cast pale shadows around the tiny space, a blue and white stripped 'mattress' sat atop a grey frame that was bolted to the concrete floor, a metal sink was perched on top of the, you guessed it, metal toilet in place of where most houses had a water tank. I really need to refer them to my decorator, the light flickered as if in agreement. A set of evenly spaced holes in the ceiling caught Tony's attention briefly before he was distracted by his own dismay. Despite the room having padded walls, the floors were bare concrete and the socks they gave him were less than adequate to keep his feet warm. Priorities, Stark.
Day 1: Subject was introduced to new living quarters and appears to be cooperating.
Attitude remains optimistic, verbally combative.
- Health: Heart Rate- 80 BMP
Blood Pressure - 130 / 82
Weight - 180 lbs
Subject remains lucid and fully aware of surroundings, no dosage administered.
As dinner time rolled around they found Tony laying on his cot with his hands outstretched tapping out a beat that resembled Black Sabbath's "Iron Man". Fucking prick.
"Dinner." Mr. Labcoat announced as the doors squealed open. "There will be no meal skipping, I assure you that you will need all of the calories in the upcoming weeks."
And with that completely innocent statement they left the aluminum tray of 'food' on the cot and shuffled out.
I did not get fucking kidnapped to join the clean plate club! The billionaire picked up a piece of what he thought was supposed to be some sort of meatloaf. They didn't even give me anything to eat with– what the fuck is that? Is that a spork?! The tray clattered to the floor spilling it's contents, some of which began to run down the drain in the center of the room.
Tony returned to his air guitar solo that was so rudely interrupted. Iron man morphed into Bohemian Rhapsodym eventually ending with the Titanic theme.
Thirty minutes later, the lights went out leaving the only source of light in the room a small window in the door that lead to the hallway.
Tony was halfway to his bed when the power cut out.
"FuckShitDamnit!" he cursed as he tripped over the overturned tray of food on his way to the cot. There was no bedding other than the thin mat, not even a pillow. This was going to be a long kidnapping.
I will give the team one week before I start blowing shit up. He thought while crossing his arms across his chest to dim the are reactor's glow.
"Administer the first dose of HAL-7."
A few dials were turned in succession and a series of valves opened up releasing an odorless gas into Stark's holding cell through the vents in the ceiling. HAL-7 is meant to induce vivid hallucinations that project ones dreams (or nightmares) while they are awake. By administering the dose at night it is introduced to the sleeping brain, flicking a few chemical switches that are only present during dreaming, and locking them in the on position. By testing the drug on the famous Tony Stark, they can observe the effects both on someone who suffers from PTSD and see how the electrical signals are effected by directly observing the arc reactor energy and radiation levels throughout the process. Not to mention the practical application of eliminating one of the most influential people on the planet that could potentially endanger this project for overseas psychological warfare. For reasons unknown to Jeff (the scientist kid), his boss really hated Stark Industries.
Tony woke up to the worst case of cotton mouth he had ever had, unable to even think about swallowing back the pungent taste in his mouth, he groaned. Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, the genius willed his legs to slide off of the bed and pull him upright, he briefly forgot where he was and almost called out for Pepper to get his coffee. Oh.
A tray of more sludge that smelled vaguely like 'breakfast' was slid under the door. Keeping in mind that he better keep up his strength while he could, he indulged the grumbling of his stomach and swallowed a mouthful of what seemed to be orange flavored oatmeal that wasn't so much 'warm' as it was 'not cold'. The previous nights meal was still overturned on the floor where he swore that it has started to corrode the steel drain, and with that, his appetite was gone again. The lights flickered.
Heart Rate: 55 Bpm
Blood Pressure: 115/70
- Breathing has slowed and the subject seems to be spending more time on the cot than previously observed. He was silent this morning.
"The Hal-7 seems to be working faster than we expected. " Noted the man behind the control board.
"Mmh." Jeff distractedly acknowledged him. He was distracted by thoughts of a disgruntled General Ross asserting that it just wasn't working fast enough. The General's previous encounters with scientists had not been notably civil: particularly his encounters with the doctor, Bruce Banner, and now they were dealing with Banner's closest friend. A gnawing sensation manifested in the pit of the young scientists stomach.
Tony was unable to do anything besides lay in his cot and count the stains on the walls. 38...39...40...what comes after 40? He blinked and lost his place. 1...2..3...4...and on and on until he blinked again. His leg was hanging over the side of the cot, swinging with the rhythm of his heartbeat, his toe brushed against the discarded spork and caused it to clatter out of the bowl. The ricochet sound of the metal spork against the concrete struck a nerve. Bullets collided with the rudimentary suit, harmlessly bouncing off of his protected frame. Dammit Yinsen! A flame thrower took care of the attackers and granted him passage. Yinsen was lying on a pile of sandbags, covered in his own blood. "Don't waste your life..."
Tony snapped back to 'reality'. He looked over to the opposing wall: the lights flickered.
"You wasted it, Stark".
Tony leaped out of his skin. A dark figure was standing opposite of him, his shirt was riddled with bullets and the stench of blood filled the small room, it smelled sweet.
"You have wasted your life."
Tony was looking up at the face of Ho Yinsen in his tiny cell. "No! No I haven't! I-I did good...I-I made a life!"
"What have you done? You have killed the only person you loved, what are you doing? You have drowned yourself in other's blood. The only thing you have done differently is pull the trigger with your own finger."
Tony was gasping for air. His lungs felt like they were going to collapse if he exhaled again. "NO! I took back my life! I-I...killed Obi. I destroyed my weapons."
"Now you are a weapon and you will destroy yourself. You wasted it."
"No! You wasted it, you should have let me go first! You didn't stick to the plan!" He was frantically pleading with the air as he sunk to his knees.
The lights flickered. He was alone: So very alone. It wasn't my fault...you didn't stick to the plan.
The monitors revealed Mr. Stark fighting agains some invisible terror, he was losing.
"When did this start?"
"About three minutes ago."
He wrote down some notes. First hallucination experienced approximately six hours after administration of initial dose, subject appears self-combative.
-Heart rate: 160
Tony was experiencing a full blown panic attack. His eyes were throbbing and his vision was blurred with pressure of each rapid fire heartbeat. The quiet was drowned out by the pulsing blood filling his ears, and no matter how much he inhaled it felt like there would never be enough oxygen to support his body. His head felt like it could roll off of his shoulders at any moment. His eyelids slammed shut and refused to open.
Throughout the day, each time food was offered, it was piled against a wall on the far side of the room and the still-full trays were removed. Attendants attempted to encourage the man to speak, each time in vain.
After how long had it been? A few hours? More?Tony staggered over to the toilet/sink and splashed water on his face. His mind was sluggish and thoughts had to be dragged out of the fog. Inhale. Yinsen. Exhale. Bleeding. Inhale...where am I? Exhale. His arms dropped to his side and created darkened damp patches along his thighs. Dead. I must be dying. I'm finally dying.
The lights went out.
A booster dose was administered that night.
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