Tyinkerbeyl der'mo

December 29, 2017:

Tony Stark invents a new repulsor-charge variant…and almost has a Hulking problem on his hands.

Stark Industries

Rising high into the skyline with the name of it's Lord and Master for all to see, the Stark Industries Tower is the most visible component of the Stark Industries complex centered in Midtown Manhattan. Manufacturing, office space, power generation and even some inventory is housed in the tower and its associated subelevels. It also contains guest housing and, at the top, the penthouse suite that is the domain of the Main Man himself, at least, when he's not at his Malibu home.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Phil Coulson, Sloane Albright

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Stark Tower has been quiet.

Its the Holidays of course. Tony lets most people off for most of the holidays. Well. Pepper does. But Tony asks her too. The man himself? Gone for a suprise vacation himself. One that he didn't evne planned, but a friend of his asked.

And he? Well when friends ask favors he usually grants them. Mostly because he doesn't have many friends.

So its been quiet. Its been calm. Lots gets done when he's out of the house of course. Gifts were given out to be opened at the appropriate time. Songs were sung. Christmas with the family was had.

Lots of science was done since Bruce was given the keys to whatever lab he felt like.

…Tony is a generous host about that.

Now however? Now the man is back. Which means things are loud and exciting again. He loves it loud and exciting.

Even if most people don't.

Or some people don't.

So in one of the multitue of experimental toyshops he works for the most part alone. Peering at the work he's doing on the arm of a suit. Tounge caught between his teath he twists a connection into a shape only he can see with his own mind. Whirling calculations consume his thoughts as he upgrades and refigures things that he shouldn't…

And the an errent thought strikes him.

"OH YEAH! I need to talk to Brucey…"

And he twists too hard on the connection.

The repulsor in the suit arm fires. A noisemaking program of holographic projection nanites blasting into being as the 'rocket' goes screaming out. Then though the window at the front of the lab. Then down the hallway.

And bursts in a shower of sparks and bangs down the end of the hallway.

"…thats…probobly…fine…"

"Miss Potts, it appears that Sir has fired off a repulsor inside the buiding," FRIDAY informs Pepper.

Seated at her desk in her office, dressed casually in a light wool sweater over a white button-down shirt and jeans, Pepper looks up at her doorway. "I knew it was too good to last. Did he hit anything that can't be replaced?" She hastily finishes up whatever she was working on and heads for the elevator with her tablet in one hand.

Wherever he'd been for his Christmas, there had been something…lacking in the air. A little like the air after a tornado has passed, still turbulent and charged but weaker, and confused. And waiting for the tornado to come back. At least she had time to work on her christmas present, which only a few people might have even considered such.

Seriously, who gives four dimensional homework for christmas?! If she doesn't come out of this program with a Ph.D…

Either way, the hologram message at the end, like some sort of multimillion dollar fortune cookie-turned-Hellraiser puzzlebox, had been interesting. Things she'd not considered, of course - but she's young still. A fortunate thing, that.

Especially since it means she's still got quick enough reflexes to hear the errant whine-discharge of the repulsor, see it coming out of the corner of her eye, and dive to the floor as it careens just overhead, smacking into a floor lamp. A very loud and short burst of Ukrainian follows, something mentioning the name of the divine for a moment before it's cut off with a clank.

Namely, the sundered floor lamp, managing to land on the back of her head perfectly. Naturally the perfectly girly yelp of pain is understandable in such situations, no matter how undignifying it is for a Stojespal to make that noise.

Everything is quiet, so much work is getting done. Bruce has, of course, had a wonderful time, in the zen building where he can work without anyone bothering him, checking in, or even really seeing much of anyone. But, that is a bit on the lonely side of things. He wandered into the hallway, coffee cup empty, though he hadn't had any intention on bothering Tony at that moment, just clearing his head on his own project, and, well, heading to the restroom. But then there's repulsor.

"Holy —— fff…." is yelped in the hallway, top volume. Bruce.

Shooting rockets at Bruce is always a great idea. Best idea.

In this particular case there was the yell, and then… silence and a noise from a door off the hallway that gets closed. Silence.

Technicly it wasn't a rocket. It was a nanomachine cloud that offered all the sparkling of a firework with none of the mess. Or cordite. Or possible fire hazards. Just something Tony works on in his spare time.

"JARVIS, was there anyone in the hall?"

"Um…yes, sir."

The modulated voice sounds hesitant. Somewhat worried. "Miss Stojespal and…Mister Banner."

Tony pauses for a moment. "Oh." A longer pause. "Oh."

Then he's moving, stepping towards the shattered full length window to poke his head out. He notes Sally there on the floor, at least he thinks its Sally. She's got a lamp on her head so its hard to tell.

Then he's rolling up his sleeves. "Bunny?" A pause. "You ok?" A longer pause. "Um…did you happen to see Bruce?"

"Mister Banner returned hurriedly to his lab, sir." JARVIS informs him as Tony just steps though the shattered window. "Ah…well…look in on him would you and see how he's doing. I know he doesn't like suprises…"

Oh man. Pepper was gonna kill him.

So he steps towards Banner's lab to knock. Lightly, carefully on the door.

Pepper waits impatiently for the elevator. "FRIDAY, was anyone injured by Tony's tinkering?"

"Miss Stojespal had a lamp land on her head," the female-sounding AI offers.

Pepper can only sigh. "All right. I'd better get a first aid kit on my way there, just in case."

"Of course, Miss Potts." And the elevator stops at a different floor so she can abscond with another lab's first aid kit. They won't need it right now anyway, those scientists have the entire week between Christmas and New Years off.

Banner's lab door answers the knock loudly, tone high-strung, "What the hell was /that/?" in reply. There's a lot of energy and emotion in that question, which is wildly out of character for Bruce; even Sally would recognize that much from their minor interactions.

Bruce is physically located just exactly on the other side of the door and to the right - he entered and hooked an immediate turn to slide down against the wall next to the door, and press his palms hard downwards into the floor, as if he could ground himself there against it.

What he said, she has an instant to think towards Banner before the lamp thumps down. Rubbing the back of her head, Sally finally stands back up, before taking a moment to properly organize everything - especially her hair, tucking it back under the everpresent hairband. "Yes, yes, absolutely I am fine. My wits absolutely are not. What -" No, he's asking questions.

Deep breath. "Ah…Doctor Banner was in there," she answers, pointing over to the door. "I believe that we were both…not entirely expecting whatever that was. It was next to him before that…Tyinkerbeyl der'mo…bounced, and almost hit me." She's not sure if he'd been hit by that sparkly mass or not, but she can't leave him there. A shake of her head and a tug on her shirt, before she'll walk over to Tony's side.

And then Bruce yells from within, and it sounds wrong. He sounds terrified, understandably, but…it's very much not the kind of Doctor Banner she knows. Admittedly, knows is circumspect; they've spoken at the labs from time to time, shared tea, and shared a particular music session with Sloane.

But the sound in his voice is definitely something disconcerting, and the Sokovian girl drops to her knees, canvas shoes stretching as she squats. One hand knocks at the door gently, the accented English worried in tone. "Doctor? It is Mr. Stark and myself, Sally. Are you hurt? Doctor? The thing is gone, it…dissipated." Exploded. Sort of. Into a lamp.

Oooh, she's gonna have a lump later.

Oh to be young and innocent again.

Tony gives a look to Sally for a moment before he shakes his head. Voice lowered. "Speak very calm to him right now. Nothing more high strung. K?" A smile at that, flashed for a moment before he looks back to the door. Leans a forearm against it.

"JAVRVIS?" Tony's voice going entirely subvocal at the moment. Something only he and the AI can hear. "Warm up Veronica would you?"

"Sir, that suit isn't quite ready yet…"

"Paint it and get the spinners and ground effects on later. Just make sure it can move enough to take this elsewhere if I have too."

His hurried whispers done he scratches the side of his nose a moment, forehead against the door. A flash of that distracted smile again. "Ha. Yeah. Sorry about that, was my bad. See had a little repulsor malfunction with a new nanite cloud. Could happen to anyone. So yeah, no real harm done right? Right. Nothing else bad out here. Just Sally and I and I'm going to guess Pepper will be here soon. We should have some tea." A glance back at Sally. "Tea is calming right?" Then back to the door. "I got your christmas present and some new complex calculations I need your help with too so there is that…"

With an annoyingly gentle 'ding', the elevator announces Pepper's arrival. She sees the pair crouched by that one door and is close enough to hear Tony's offerings to whomever is on the other side of the door. By her guesstimate, it'll be Dr. Banner. And, she sighs.

"FRIDAY, please have the most trustworthy of Tony's drones bring me the tin of tea from my office labelled 'Luscious Licorice'. It will weigh a little over a hundred grams, so make sure the drone can carry that much easily." She then steps over and puts a hand on Sally's shoulder.

"If you have a tea kettle, please set some water boiling and get the cups ready." She then sets the first aid kit on the floor by the door that Tony's leaned up against so that she can cross her arms and give the inventor an unimpressed stare.

"It's /fine/," Bruce answers in the same tone as before. He may as well have said "IT IS NOT FINE", with the message that carried. He isn't terribly chatty at the moment, but the door to the lab isn't locked, just closed. His voice is very clearly just on the other side of the door.

"Just a burn. Shoulder. …I don't get to keep shirts, obviously," Bruce answers in a weird annoyance through the door. He doesn't sound like he's moved or is moving at all, just sitting there, low, and talking to them.

JARVIS will report, from inside, if asked — that Bruce appears to really just be sitting there, holding onto a burn on his upper right arm, and doesn't appear 'explosive'.

Curious, but she supposes she understands. Sally had just been through a hell of a fright, and the good doctor as well. Very calm, okay. She can do that, giving Tony a nervous smile back before taking a moment to compose herself, letting her voice drop to a quiet norm. Polite, demure in a way, rather like she'd been at the Christmas party when Emma arrived.

"Doctor, everything is alright. I am well, and -" There's a chime behind her, and she takes a moment to glance back. "Ms. Potts is with us as well. Just a bump, I was protecting the floor from a lamp." A joke! …Bit of a dark one, but the slavic race-car enthusiast and would-be driver tends to those from time to time. "Please tell us you are alright? It is not bad?"

The hand on her shoulder gets a look, and a sharp nod. "I am going to make tea, alright? I remember what kind you liked. I will be right back." And at a quick trot she's off to take care of precisely what Pepper suggested - fortunately this won't take long. A quick misuse of the coffee pot's heating pad gets water going, and it's less than a minute before she's got the stuff brewing.

And glancing worriedly back at the door, unsure of what's being said between the trio - hoping Bruce is alright. If he's burned…it cannot be too bad, can it? Or else he would be in more pain, she thinks…and tries to remember the aid procedures for burns, when she managed to sneak into the pit lanes…

DON'T WORRY PEPPER! TRUSTY DRONE ACE IS ON THE JOB!

Ace used to be Dunce. But Jessica renamed him.

It'll be fine.

As she shows up Tony spares a smile for Pepper and nods easily. "JARVIS, warm Rescue up too just in case." Again that whisper before he steps back from the door. "Yeah sorry man, comes with the whole superhero territory." A pause. "Wait burned? I guess that nanite cloud needs more interitions to work from. I'll get it by new years." Which is only a day or two away. He isn't paying attetnion.

"Alright buddy, we're coming in then. Sally's making tea and Pep has a first aid kit and a better bedside manner than I do."

And he'll start to push the door open slowly as he gives Sally a thumbs up.

Pepper scoops up the first aid kit and brushes past Tony the moment the door is open wide enough. She has no reason whatsoever to be scared of Bruce, so the inventor's precautions are really only irritants to her. As soon as she's inside she looks for Banner and finds him sitting on the floor, where she promptly joins him.

"Dr. Banner, may I see your arm, please?" She doesn't reach out to him, and she won't try if he doesn't give her permission.
Bruce is… where JARVIS supplied he would be. He is in simple greyish-purple slacks, new teal sneakers and a newly crisped dark blue button-up shirt, with one hand wrapped firmly over the crispy part on upper opposite bicep. Which does, unfortunately, mask severity, but is clearly him guarding the injury. His complexion is a sort of weird pale tone, but within human range.

Bruce is also wearing a very heavy duty glare to give to anybody that does decide to come into the room: it's a rebellious look generally seen on hotheaded teenagers that get angry over nothing: not mild mannered, easygoing dorky scientists. But, to a casual observer, this IS a whole lot of weird behavior over 'nothing.'

"It might be best if you didn't touch me at all," Bruce says slowly, dropping his head back against the wall and doing a big, deep breath. But he pries his other hand off of the burn. It's not severe, but clearly could use first aid. "I want to keep my streak going," Bruce adds, frustrated, roughly to Tony, or maybe just to the world in general.

Sally can't help but keep an eye over on the door. She can't hear much of what's said, until Tony announces they're coming in. Meanwhile she's practically dancing from toe to toe with a mix of nervous energy and worry - at least, until Ace arrives with the helpful blend.

Licorice tea sounds…actually quite good, come to think of it. And - stop acting like a child! Rusalka takes a long deep breath, and settles her feet as well as the rest of her mind. Focus, and do this properly. Errant thoughts of wishing she'd had another one of Jessica's presents here at the office get filed away as 'good idea for later' - that tea set really was neat. But right now, she has something else to deal with.

Tea is serious business.

Pepper's in first, slowly followed by Tony, and that leaves Sally in the main lab with Ace. She has a minute or two, and gathers teacups, but like any child in a toy factory can't resist the urge to take a moment to peek at the strange wonders, before she's back to work.

Pepper doesn't understand the comment about keeping a streak, but doesn't comment on it. She just glances at the burn on Bruce's arm, then opens the first aid kit and takes out one of those 'soothing' patches designed to go on minor burns. She unwraps it most of the way then offers it to Banner to take out of her hand if he wishes. She puts no obligations on him, and she doesn't once even try to move an inch closer to him. There's just her hand, with the burn pad on it.

Ace hands over the tea. Then he does a barrel roll. Because he is /ACE/. And Aces do barrel rolls. He also burbles electronic noise at Sally, because he's /helping/.

He's good at that.

Tony slips in after Pepper and nods. "Alright man. We'll just give you some air for a second. Wouldn't do to break that streak right? I'm sure you'd owe someone some money for loosing a bet somewhere if you did." When he's nervous or thinking Tony fills the air with sound.

usually the cound of his own voice.

He crouches near Pepper and puts a hand on her shoulder for just a moment. Comforting touch right there. Weather its comforting to him or to Pepper is debateable.

The offer of the bandage, not forcing, just offering causes him to nod slightly half to himself. He'll leave Bruce to explain the comment on the 'streak' thing later. If he feels up to it.

"I don't make bets I'm obviously going to lose," Bruce answers, but the edge has gone out a little bit. He's managing whatever the issue is. He did, however, shut his eyes, and was unaware of the patch for a few awkward long moments. But he breathes out slowly through his nose and looks at them, and at the patch. "I'm not a breakable porcelain doll," Bruce says, maybe also to himself, but the grumpiness came back. No tactic of words works to placate Bruce, says the current evidence. He clearly is debating the patch and if he's willing to grab it or allow her: it's a strange little inward fight, an edge of weird fear (?) of the bandage, perhaps. "Okay." He's ready. He drops his hands loose at his lap — and hawkishly watches Pepper.

And Sally is still young enough to find the little drone charming, and giggles at the barrel roll and burble. "Dyvovyzhnyy. Dyakuyu," she adds with a nod and smile. The little drone deserved some praise. "Now stay, Ace. Ah, guard this spot." One foot stretches out to point to a particular patch of floor, worthy of being guarded simply because it's…clean.

That leaves her free to finish the tea. Four cups brewed, four poured, and she glances around - there, that'll do. An odd little tray-pan plucked from a pile, but it's shallow, round, and not too deeply bowled so the cups will remain okay.

And with that, Sally makes her way carefully and quietly to the door. Keeping her voice down like she'd been told, there's only a few words to say. "The tea is ready. May I enter?"

When Bruce finally gives her permission to help with the burn, she reaches forward with that one hand only and delicately touches the blue gel-like pad to the burn on his arm. She then moves her hand enough that he can hold the burn pad there for himself if he chooses to.

"I never equated you with porcelain, Dr. Banner. But I have friends and acquaintenances that don't usually care to be touched, and I respect that as much as I can." As if proving this, despite having applied the small bit of medical assistance, she has yet to actually come into contact with Bruce's skin directly. Her other hand, however, doesn't hesitate to reach up to Tony's hand resting on her shoulder, a delicate new watch visible on her wrist.

She glances at the door when Sally says the tea is ready and requests entrance. She then looks to Bruce again, as in her mind, it is entirely up to him and she'll respect whatever decision he makes.

Ace salutes with a manipulator arm and starts to burble something suitibly martial sounding as he begins to 'march' over that spot of floor.

'BeBeepBebebebebebeeeeeeeeep~'

Tony on the other hand feels relief as he hears Banner's voice seem to calm an octive or two. He flops back on his heels to twitch a smile at the man. "Yeah, really didn't expect that one to go off like that. Like I said my bad." A smirk then. "And yeah, Pep is used to that. Heck I don't even like people handing me things."

Its so true.

The inventor /does/ notice the new watch though, and his grin could light up a room for a moment. "…I knew you would like that." He mutters. "I knew it."

He didn't know it but he thought it worked.

"So! Got a christmas gift for you in the other room. A few things really. I just remembered it when I…set off my arm. I sware thats not a problem most times."

The tea comes in and Sally gets a greatful nod as he scooches back just a little bit. "Floor tea time. The best tea time."

Bruce didn't give an indicator either way on Sally really, sort of a slow shrug, unable to focus on more than trying to keep his lid on things.

"I don't have a problem with being toouuche—-ouch!" He flinches and automatically flings the patch away with his other hand in a weird fright. The reaction that follows seems more to be linked to the briefly humiliated look than actual physical pain.

The eruption is a thing to watch. There is a pulse of veins through Bruce's cheeks and up over his forehead, and his neck flares with threads of bulky intensity. His hands take on a fisted, weird rigor mortis of locked muscle. The more creepy element is the green, though, the coloring that floods out under the surface of the skin across and around each pulsed vein. It pulses like the beat of a heart, two, three times, heavier each time.

"Gift, huh. Tell me about it." Deadpan. It's not a request really. Yet it is. A dark request for a distraction or lifeline.

"Is it a sister of Veronica?" Danger, danger!

For her sake, it's not that different from Pepper. Sure, there's the old-family aspect of etiquette and such to those around. There's also the aspect that said old family is a family of warriors, some of whom still carry old scars physical and otherwise. The gentle and polite responses to someone who has trouble, from irascibility to worse, is something she's grown up learning.

And maybe there is something in Dr. Banner's background, an event? Something similar…he did work in advanced physics after all, right? She might puzzle over it later, but it can wait.

For now she slips into the room quietly, glad to not be wearing heels this time. Floor tea, Tony says. Floor tea is good. Legs crossing, Sally rests the round tray between them, still not having noticed the embossed design on the other side.

"Tea is served. Would you like honey?" There's enough flavor in whatever Ms. Potts ordered up that she shouldn't need to add anything, and - the flinch and yell, and slight transformation afterward, gets her to freeze in shock.

Her voice is that of a little girl, meek and terrified at what looks like someone in front of her having three heart attacks at once. "Doc…tor?" And then from nowhere, a thought strikes, a whisper carried on no winds for her ears only.

Thank god she'd recorded that particular 'test' - it takes only a few seconds for her fingers to dance over her watch, bring up the hologram interface, and play something from memory. A guitar, played by a fashionable young Inhuman covered in blue scales. A slightly trippy tone to its soft strings, as Joe Satriani manages to play in a curious downtempo tune.

He'd enjoyed and seemed to relax that day, listening in on the impromptu jam. Maybe…

Pepper is clearly surprised by the man's sudden reaction to the burn patch, but she doesn't move beyond a very momentary widening of her eyes. She counts a silver tinsel-haired, extremely light sensitive ELF as a good acquaintance. Bruce going a bit green … doesn't really register in comparison.

The gentle music earns Sally a smile, though. Because it's truly soothing.

"Veronica has cousins not sisters, so many cousins." When faced with what become a sudden green skinned monster in arms reach of him Tony Stark falls back on a tride and true defense.

He babbles.

"So many cousins, if I told you what Mark suit I'm up too Pepper would frown at me." A pause. "Well now she's going to frown at me anyway. ANYWAY. Nope, not that. Not a suit at all. Well one of them is a suit. Kinda? Sorta. See I talked to Phil while I was out and he wanted to find a way to stop a speedster so you and I get to come up with a delivery method that'll stop one. I got something that would do it if it gets on him at least."

Breathe Tony. Breathe.

His hand remains on Pepper's shoulder even as Sally starts with the background music. Which he is fairly thankful for.

"Thats not the gift. The gift is a partial scan of Wakandan tech that I need h" There is a pause. "..-he" A longer pause as he tries to form the words. "…help. Help figuring it out."

"Oh my god that was hard to admit."

A longer pause. "I mean we are talking science that I've never even thought of before. You'll love it. Trust me. And I'll make it a no repulsor zone. Promise." A longer pause. "They have working anti-gravity tech…pretty sure thats what it is…just think of it right?"

Never mind the fact that there might be an international incident involved. It'll be fine.

Sally helps more than she perhaps intended: sheerly by showing up, staring right at him, and getting such a meek and terrified look front and center. Plus… the music: more the intention of it than the music itself, really. And Tony fills the world with random words. And an apology? Wow. Bruce feels damn guilty now.

Well, the turning-green scientist jerks his head back some — bang, into the wall— and groans, lifting a hand to the back of his head. But the green and the veins fade down.

Bruce turns his head away and to the side, voice catching raw in his throat. "If this — happens again— please just get a safer distance away from me…" The tone drips with self hatred. Careful you don't slip in it. Bruce drops his hands, an anxious tension making them shake, and physically sort of grips his hands into fists a few times, working with it, and draws one hand in to rub his eyes; it also serves to kind of hide behind his hand for a moment. He then kind of scoots over to pick up the burn patch and slap it onto the injury. He winces but doesn't overreact this time.

"You don't /need/ my help," Bruce adds to Tony, quietly generous to his friend's ego. "…all I do is suggest alternate directions. Time saving." A pause. "You have an anti-gravity generator?" Because Science.

She can't help it. She can't resist. After choosing one of the cups of tea for herself, Pepper smiles almost conspiratorially at Bruce when Tony forces himself to say the word 'help'. She doesn't comment aloud, though, suspecting that Dr. Banner is more than smart enough to pick up on the fact that she's wordlessly encouraging him to poke at Tony and his struggle with asking for help.

Is Bruce quick enough on the uptake?

A long deep breath as the song plays, and Sally sits motionless - the tea's set on the floor and she's managed to settle back ever so slightly - just to give Dr. Banner his space. The smile from Ms. Potts is returned, nervously, because she's worried about the other man's condition.

Spending what felt like hours doing everything she could to keep Obadiah alive; it feels like that right now. Trying to remember what to do. Keep her composure. Keep from…collapsing in fear, fright, everything. She's seen more than most people…but still a child. Still young enough to feel it that much harder.

Tony, meanwhile, is Tony - but in a way maybe that'll help. Something for Banner to focus on, to listen to, and let the music underscore it maybe.

Inside there's a flicker of surprise, why didn't he ask her for help? She could…no, probably not. She's still just a student after all. If Stark can't grasp it, there's not a chance she would, and yet there's a little bit of pique that he never even asked her. Of course…considering how he'd acquired that scan, and how she'd acted…

…Perhaps it is best to sit back, swallow her pride - again - and trust him to know what he's doing. Asking for help, specifically. And when Bruce denies it, she'll just reach down and take a cup of tea for herself. One long sip…crisis? averted. Whatever had just happened.

"Of course I do big guy," Tony replies with a smirk. "Sometimes. Maybe. Possibily." He holds up a hand though. "And no I don't have an anti-gravity generator. I have /scans/ of an anti-gravity generator." A pause. "I think." A longer pause. "I honestly have no idea what I have but it'll be fun to piece it together."

A glance between the little group.

"I wasn't going to tell everyone about it due to you know…Wakanda." And the fact that he has so many no-entry and stop asking about it legal things slapped on him about that country. "They get so touchy!"

Plausible deniability is that thing.

"A sideglance is given toward Pepper then, a smirk angled up towards her. "And I know you're laughing. Just go ahead and laugh."

Bruce shares a small look with Pepper - he sees her conspiracy smile and briefly his lips move— he is aware— but actually … he drops his eyes from it. He caught the request, but his look reads that he isn't up to it, or isn't willing, for whatever reason. Deliberately choosing not to tease Tony for now. The reason may or may not be apparent.

"Show me what you have? Dwelling is just going to— relapse," Bruce says, a little curtly, in a sort of tired way, that smells of mild anxiety. He pushes to his feet. And then bends to get the tea. "Thank you." He doesn't clarify what for, in a small voice. It isn't challenging to him at all to thank others, but the guilt is strong. "I have a personal collection of energy signature scans. Better than collecting mold and fungus I figure."

Bruce's refusal to tease Tony is noticed and left unremarked, but Pepper's respect for the physicist does increase by a good bit.

"Oh, I'm not laughing, Tony. I'm thinking you need to keep your fingers away from Wakanda. I don't know if they're one of the countries that still punishes theft by cutting off the convicted person's hand, and I really don't want to find out."

When Bruce finally stands, she moves to do so as well. With her teacup in one hand, it's honestly not as easy as it seems to regain her feet and not spill the beverage all over her hand.

Tony's mention of Wakandans getting 'so touchy' about…really, anything well. Cobalt blue eyes glance to the side and Sally does her best to chew very softly on her lips for a moment before clearing her throat. Not that she knows anything about that sort of attitude…

And as much as she'd love to see this antigravity generator come together, the thought of Bruce's personal collection on energy signatures is almost equally intriguing. Well. It's certainly going to be interesting to have Dr. Banner around, especially if they can manage to keep Tony from setting off any more nanite-repulsor pyrotechnics.

Last to stand, she takes a deep breath and then cringes a little - she shouldn't have done that. "Ah…Ms. Potts? Do you have ah…tylenol, or anything?" One hand raises to gently touch the back of her head - lump detected, and a tender one too.

Tony gets a suddenly disapproving stare that she makes sure Bruce can see. "Mr. Stark has a preference for overly heavy lamps, I see." Sniff. Noble disdain! Mockery! She can get away with the joke. She's cute, after all.

"Hey now, stealing is a very negitive word. This is a no negitive zone. No negitive no judging zone. Yup." Tony makes a little box with his fingers as he goes, standing up and offering a hand to Bruce and then Pepper as he does so.

Then Sally too if they both take it, but she'll has to wait till he actually does have a free hand.

"Besides, its not stealing. Its /science/. Comepleatly different." A beatpause. "And they started it." A flash of a grin at that before he starts to shuffle them all into the other lab. A quieter lab. Set up for holoscans and schemetics. And displaying energy signitures as well if you go that direction.

A smirk though as he is backing out of the room. "Pepper totally bought that lamp." He sing-songs at Sally.

Because like he pays attention to that sort of thing.

The apology waved off. Bruce is a friend. Friends of his are rare enough that they can get away with murder.

…quite litterally in some cases.

But for now there is no murder. Instead there is only science.

And a tiny drone, fiercely defending an empty stretch of floor

"But really. Running /away/ instead of /at/ me if I'm hit with your beam weapons would be a better idea," Bruce adds more firmly. He can get insistant. But is also distractable with shiny science things.

"I wouldn't ever suggest stealing. Readouts… that's our scientific /duty/ to analyze," Bruce comments. "And we build upon what others have done, and advancements continue… go to where you got, err, thoughtful about needing a second opinion?" Bruce suggests mildly, not going to say 'where you needed help' of course. Hey, if Tony can tolerate the Green, Bruce can tolerate… a great deal of neurotic.

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