The Sting

June 04, 2018:

SHIELD conducts a sting on a rogue MI-6 operative… using a defecting MI-6 operative.

Huddlestone Arch, Central Park

An almost fairytale-style bridge in Central Park, near 110th and the Lasker Rink and Pool.


NPCs: Warhorse, MI-6 agents

Mentions: Peggy Carter


Mood Music: Clubbed to Death (Kurayamino Variation) - Rob Dougan

Fade In…


“This is operation has two primary objectives,” says Agent Leigh Lin as she regards the agents gathered just outside the opened rear doors of a standard-equip SHIELD surveillance van. THe agent is absolutely diminutive — standing just shy of five feet and quiet petite to boot. Her black hair contains a single streak of white, and the smooth locks are done into a tight bun. She radiates with the unsurprising vibe of tiny, but fierce. She regards the half-circle of agents around her with pale brown eyes as she speaks in a tight, precise tone. “Obtain credible evidence that a rogue, foreign agent targeted and intercepted SHIELD information through illicit means and provide protection for the operative conducting the sting.”

From her tablet, Agent Lin holds up an image of the MI-6 agent simply known as Courtier. She’s looking straight ahead in what is obviously a badge photo with her dark hair combed back into a high ponytail and her features austere. “Parambir Ghai — codename Courtier — will be meeting with the MI-6 operative known as Warhorse at the Huddlestone bridge in Central Park where she will be handing off a facsimile of the stolen hard-disk appropriated from Agent Lancer ten days ago. She is expected to meet with Warhorse at 12:05 AM.”

Lin’s eyes barely tick in Lancer’s direction, though the man crosses his arms at his chest with a grunt. He looks down at his feet to avoid catching the eyes of anyone else who may be looking toward him, focusing on the briefing.

“The van will be parked streetside in front of Dunkin Donuts on 110th — about a third of a mile from the meeting location.” That earns a few chortles from some of the agents, but Lin carries forward. “Field agents will be spread throughout the area in case the operation goes sideways. We’re operating under the assumption that Warhorse is working alone…


It is just a minute past midnight, and agents are in the field.

The Huddlestone bridge — or more famously known as the Huddlestone Arch — looks transported out of a fairy story. It’s all roughly hewn stone, moss weeping out from the cracks. Ropes of slender vines drape across the upper barrier, creating a short fringe curtain across the underside of the bridge. With summer in full glory, the trees that surround the bridge are thick with leaves — and in the dark, shadows. The sidewalk under the bridge hugs one side while letting a deep stream run along the other.

Two figures stand facing each other on the barrier of the bridge, looking out toward Lasker rink and pool to the northeast. They’re already in conversation, despite the fact that the surveillance van has only just picked up Courtier’s listening signal.

Courtier’s voice can be heard with abrupt clarity on the designated channel. “… betrayed the Crown, and now you’re trying to fucking convince me to do the same? You can’t possibly think that I — ”

“Courtier, the Crown is the one who has done the betraying… we are merely answering that betrayal in kind.” Warhorse’s voice has a lyrical quality to it — something deep and warm that neatly disguises the edge of danger hiding in the undertones. “This is sadly not a trial offer… you must either trust that I am telling you the truth, or believe the lies the Tower has been weaving for decades.” He pauses, and the taller man on the bridge draws a hand from his pocket to reach for Courtier’s shoulder. “I gave Michael the same choices.”



Simon Green almost always pays attention in briefings, but he might be paying attention a little better than usual this time. His M-4 carbine is racked in the van, while he's wearing a Mets cap and a light windbreaker that neatly covers his ICER, his .45, and his slimline bulletproof vest. He gives Lancer a little shoulder-shove and a grin, but apparently doesn't feel the need to shovel any more crap in the other agent's direction. The mention of Huddlestone Bridge as the locale kills his smile, however, and he frowns, running through his memories of the wooded terrain nearby as best as he can.


Most people don't exercise at midnight, but Simon isn't the only one on the paths in Central Park. After all, the early summer is hot, and a lot of New Yorkers work long hours. So with his (silent) earbuds in, and his arms swinging briskly, he is the picture of an over-stressed marketing drone or something like that, out for a midnight walk instead of a midnight binge-drink. His progress around the Loch Walking Path is slow — after all, he wouldn't want to actually cut directly under the arch while the target and the bait are talking — but steady enough to be believable. Inside his sleeve, his thumb gives a quick double-click of his mic to show that he's approaching the position for another lap of the loch, even as his head bounces to the beat of the music that plays only in his head and his eyes scan the woods around him.


Simon's van is not the only one with a spy lurking inside. There's a shut-down-for-the-day food cart not too far distant that has a distinct lack of hot dogs and a distinct presence of very good recording equipment (it's amazing what you can do with a unidirectional mic and a parabolic collector dish) and an ICER-equipped rifle. The rifle's barrel is pointed very carefully out the driver's side window; on its other side crouches Agent 13, who really doesn't want to shoot anyone today.

Sharon's lips thin when she hears Michael's name mentioned. Oh, she's very interested in knowing more, but she suspects she knows some of this story. She listens through her earpiece, absently licking her lips.


Earlier… Danielle Moonstar listens to the debrief, memorizing as much as she can. Her expression is mostly attentive, but occasionally her gaze sweeps people around, before settling back upon the Agent giving the debrief. The mention of Dunkin Donuts earns a brief smile from the Cheyenne woman, but that's really about it, then it's back to the information at hand.

Now… It's just past midnight and it seems like the area around is just full of people, which isn't unusual, especially on a Friday night. There's joggers, power walkers, people going out and about, but also the homeless.

That's what Dani's portraying herself as today. A homeless sort settled upon a ground, with blanket and all her worldly 'belongings' around her. Those belongings mostly consist of plastic bags within plastic bags, but somewhere within them sit a few SHIELD weapons cleverly hidden. Her hair has seen better days, as have her clothes, and while she's sitting up on her blanket her chin sits against her chest as she clearly 'dozes'.

Even though she's hardly asleep, merely feigning as she waits and watches.


Rami shakes her head, stepping out of Warhorse's attempt to touch her shoulder. Her lips are set in a hard, unforgiving line that is conveyed through the tightness she holds her body. The anger in her voice is unmistakable, delivered with heat instead of chill. "Is that it, then? You made Michael an offer to betray his country and he told you to get buggered?" Then she starts to shake her head, stepping back another retreating stride.

Words like Michael would have told me echo about in her head, but she knows he's baiting her for that. He wants to verify that Rami has been in communications with Michael. She won't give him that.

"If that was true, you would have killed him… not had him burned."

Warhorse starts to smile, white teeth flashing between dark brown lips. His chuckle is deep and almost patronizing, and it sets Rami's nerves on edge. "Quite right, quite right." He shuffles aside a bit, leaning his elbow into the barrier of the bridge, looking out toward Central Park in a casual glance. "How's this then, Rami… you give me the data device… the real device, not whatever decoy SHIELD gave you… and I'll tell you the truth about Michael… and I won't kill the agents young Margaret Carter has decided to risk for this pitiful operation."

On Simon's path is a woman, stretching out her legs as he nears on a park bench. She's tall, blond, and dressed in very expensive athletic gear. She smiles a warm smile toward him, eyes tracking him as he comes near. She straightens from her latest stretch, reaching up to tug out one of her earbuds… only to spin suddenly, launching a knife right for Simon's shoulder.

At the same time, another homeless man in a thick green jacket — quite thick for the summer night — trails up toward Moonstar while she 'dozes.' He looks to be on his way to move pass her, edging in very close toward her bagged belongings… only to reach down to grab Moonstar by her shoulders.

The closest agent to the sting is Lancer, and Sharon can just see him through her scope as he maintains his cover just beneath the heavy shadow of an oak tree. He's leaning back, and then he's leaning back even further until his back arches and his entire body spasms as he reaches up to grab for something behind him just as he's lifted off his feet by what can only be the sheer force of someone pulling back on a garrote.

This all happens at the same time, and Rami's only reaction is reaching behind her beneath the fall of her trench coat, hands closing on the handles of her batons, breathing out a quick, "You're a bastard, Warhorse."


Of course it's the tall blonde with the nice — yoga pants that tries to kill Simon. Thankfully, he has just a moment's warning for the attempt, and so he quickly goes from eyeing her… yoga pants to "tripping" over a wrinkle in the pavement where a root is starting to break through. An already-rushed sprawl becomes even more graceless as the knife strikes his right shoulder. Thankfully, there's a reason that so few people use throwing knives, as Simon's tumble forward changes the range enough that the knife has not yet completed its final rotation, and it thunks off his collarbone, inflicting a small slash and starting to raise a rather meaty bruise, but doing nothing worse. There's a grunt from Agent Green's comms as he sprawls out a moment and then starts to scramble to his feet, "Green. Made."



Damn it, Sharon's shot isn't that great. She's not so far away that she needs to make a lot of calculations for this one; aiming toward the head and neck instead of the trunk, since everyone who's anyone in town these days is wearing bulletproof vests. Not so many of them wear bulletproof collars.

"Moonstar, at your six," she murmurs, her calm smooth voice belying the adrenaline running through her system.

She squeezes the trigger once, twice, three times. If she switches to the night sights, she might be able to see better, but she'd rather go ahead and shoot without them than let Lancer get his windpipe severed.


Everything seems to be going smoothly, or as smooth as one can anticipate, until suddenly it's not.

The words from Sharon are heard a half-a-second before hands suddenly touch her shoulders.

Agent Carter's warning is enough for Dani to whip her head up as her cover is clearly broken. Or rather the cover never really quite effective at all. Not that it matters. Not when the enemy is grabbing her by the shoulders. Which is fine. Or so it seems, as Dani allows the man to grab her shoulders and haul her upward. As soon as she's mostly upon her feet the Cheyenne woman's right hand suddenly erupts with a magenta glow. Then that psychic shiv is slammed at the green-coated man's gut.

Should the dagger 'pierce', the man will find his nervous system thrown into a psychic shock and within his mind nightmares will play while unconscious.


"Hello, Agent Green." The woman's voice is lovely and unmistakably BRITISH. It's even just a hint condescending. She's advancing toward him, reaching down along her thigh to pull another thin blade from what must be some reinforced hidden pockets. Her other hand does the same until there's two of them — one in each hand. "You don't have to get up… you could stay down." Then she kicks out, trying to take his legs out from under him before he can secure himself back on his feet.

Lancer is on his knees moments after Sharon's triple-shot, and the garroter is a lump of shadow behind him. He turns slightly behind him, holding a hand persistently against his throat. When he glances forward again, it is with a wave toward Sharon's direction. But Agent 13 shouldn't get too relaxed. Moments after her own shot, the hot dog cart rattles as several rounds ricochet off its exterior. There's also several more wild shots, all coming from a direction of the bridge. Muzzle flashes can be seen under the bridge.

The so-called homeless man looks to be on the verge of throwing Moonstar bodily to one side, and then he's doubling over her hand as something that cannot possibly be tangible is being thrusted into his belly. He grabs harder at the Native American woman, his body convulsing as muscles tighten and tighten and tighten. Then he sags, collapsing onto the ground.

On the bridge, Courtier's first attempt to smack Warhorse across the temple with one of her batons is countered by a solid throw of his forearm. He is faster, more trained, and more prepared than she is. But she has him distracted, pushing forward with relentless instincts. She just has to keep him engaged long enough for the other agents to get here. She can do that… she thinks…


As the woman closes on him, Simon decides that she's right. He shifts his weight back so that his feet can be easily kicked out from beneath him, offering next to no resistance and hopefully upsetting his attacker's balance. Unfortunately, that puts his ICER under him, so instead he fills his hand with the reassuring weight of his silenced H&K .45 from his hip. "Got no problem going down for a pretty woman…" The pistol is tucked in close to his chest to keep it away from any assault by the British woman, the silencer pointed at her face. "But I think you should lose the knives."


Well, that she should have expected. Revealing her position to save a life means… revealing her position, but it was worth it. Luckily, Sharon and her rifle make a fairly small target. She pivots, crouching lower and smaller, and takes just another few seconds to try and get a bead on whoever's found her.


She hopes she was successful. She's not sticking around to find out. "Agent 13. Marked. Beta time." Which they should know means she's moving to position Beta, and that should take her about half a minute. Hopefully Courtier can keep Warhorse in check for that long, because she's pretty sure she can take out the other agent given the chance.

Slipping out the other side — yes, it's time to blow this hot dog stand — Agent 13 keeps low and close to the ground, then to the shrubbery, almost crawling to keep out of sight.


As soon as the man is down Dani moves, saying over her own comm, "Thanks Carter. Moonstar likewise been made." She now goes for her plastic bags, specifically the ones that hold her ICER.

Even as she goes for her weapon her gaze twitches around the area searching for her fellow agents. Or, at least, the ones that she can see.

Agent Green's predicament is spotted first, and while he seems to have it (mostly) in hand, the black-haired woman moves to help. Once her ICER is hand, Dani fires a few rounds at the woman in the yoga pants.

Then her head cants slightly when she hears Carter's update. That's enough to bring a faint downward twitch to Dani's lips, but hopefully they can still turn this around.

They just need to get to the bridge.


When Simon drops too easily to the ground again, the blond agent detects the tactic just a second too late. She's staggered forward a step, regaining her balance only after she's set weight heavily into her left heel. Then she smiles down at him as he points the silenced weapon up at her, brow arched slightly. There's a clatter as she drops the knives, holding up her hands slightly. She starts to back up, giving him a bit more room to stand… only to be dropped to her knees by the ICER fire, and then crumpling over in a heap on the sidewalk.

Under the bridge, the shadowy sniper is also on the move. He emerges from beneath like a troll. He fires a few more times at the hot dog cart, it rattling with the impact. Then he drops low against the hewn stone, rifle pressed up into his shoulder as he tries to track Sharon's movements.

Up on the bridge, Rami has shown to be driven entirely by determination as she is down to one baton, wielding it more like a gatka with sharp, spinning movements. She hits him squarely in the soft flesh of his side, and then stabs the point of the baton into Warhorse's shoulder. He staggers two steps, only to barrel forward to bully his way past her weapon, grabbing her solidly by the back of the head, standing behind her. "Enough games, Courtier. Where's the data device?"


"Night night." Even while Simon's brain is processing exactly why the British blonde is collapsing at his feet, his mouth is quipping away. He rolls easily to his feet, glancing past Dani to the pair on the bridge — and the man with the rifle beneath the arch. "Thanks, Moonstar." Even as he speaks, he's moving forward at a quick trot, pistol still tucked in close. "Didn't want to have to…" And then the sniper's rifle is on his shoulder, and Simon grimaces, once more flicking a glance between the top of the bridge and beneath. His board shoes skid slightly on the pavement as he comes to a halt, raising the .45 before him in both hands. The silenced pistol coughs twice in quick succession, the former specops soldier taking the safer shots to try and put the sniper down — or at least distract him with impacts on his vest if he's wearing one.


Sharon was sharp enough not to wear a white jumpsuit tonight. Stylish, snazzy, and attention getting. Not what she wants tonight in other words. She slides behind a tree, then low behind a park bench, then at last behind a low tree stump. Just the right height, she discovered earlier in the day, to lie behind for a low-down sniper's nest. She takes the time — she has to — to switch out her scope for night sights, then settles in to take aim at Warhorse. Not her own sniper. Because Rami's in immediate danger and she might have another few seconds before bullets start flying her way again.

"Eyes on Warhorse," she says softly. "Taking the shot in three."


"You're welcome." Comes Dani's quick reply and then like Simon she's moving.
While he goes for the enemy sniper, Dani herself brings her gaze up to Rami and Warhorse. Seeing Rami constrained the Cheyenne woman grimaces, but doesn't quite do anything overt yet. Not when Sharon's voice quietly comes across the comm with those words of intent.

Instead magenta energy builds around the fingertips of both of Dani's hands; ready to be formed into a bow and arrow, to potentially be fired after Sharon's own attempt. Though hopefully with Agent Carter's skill, Dani won't need to pull out the psychic weaponry.


"I gave it back to SHIELD," the former MI-6 agent hisses as she reaches behind her, grabbing hard onto Warhorse's hand. He tightens his fingers in her hair, anchoring his grip before he slams her forehead down onto the barrier of the bridge. Stars explode across her vision, and blackness tightens in at the corners of her consciousness. Her brow is split, blood spilling across her nose and along the curve of her eye socket. He's hauling her back up to prepare for another concussion-inducing slam… and then an abrupt and unexpected sniper shot cuts straight through Warhorse's shoulder. He lets go of Courtier almost immediately, and the handler drops to the ground first, leaving Warhorse wide-open in his surprise.

Simon's quick work behind the trigger knocks the sniper back two steps before he collapses behind the bridge, falling under the shadow of the unlit arch.


The violent motion on top of the bridge tugs at Simon's attention, but he resumes his quick advance, "At least one KO and one WIA or KIA," that he's seen, "at target location." His steps slow as he approaches the downed sniper, apparently unwilling to be weaponless long enough to swap to his ICER at the moment. "Lancer, you still with us?" Because he's seen or heard from the other Agents on the mission, but not the other one. Closing on the base of the bridge, he raises his pistol toward the now-wide-open Warhorse, "Hands on your head."


Sharon, meanwhile, is laying low and quiet. She's not about to make herself visible — whoever saw her before appears to be taken out, and she'd like to continue keeping a low profile just in case there's any other reinforcements.

"Thanks for the cover," she murmurs, though, raising a hand to the comm unit in her ear.


While Simon runs closer to the bridge, Dani continues to hang back.

Her powers are line of sight limited and she'd rather keep the man and Rami within her sights.

When Simon orders Warhorse to put his hands on his head, Dani unconsciously tenses. Even with the tension in her hands the snippets of magenta energy continue to glimmer between her fingers.

Now she waits to see how the man complies and if he doesn't - well there's a psychic barrage readied for him.


"Yeah," croaks a voice across the coms, sounding strangled through the radio feed. Lancer is not really enjoying this Courtier person much.

On the bridge, Warhorse is turning his fierce face toward Simon as he appears at the base of the bridge, ready for some retort. But then the night-night rounds slam into his chest, and he collapses almost immediately down onto the stone of the bridge in a heap — unmoving, but unconscious.

Rami is scooting back weakly to lean into the barrier of the bridge, head tilting back as she feels more blood trickle down from the wound. She does get one more hit in against the rogue MI-6 agent, kicking Warhorse in his shoulder while he's unconscious. "Bastard," she breathes.

Out in the park, it's abruptly quiet. There's no other movements of advancing enemy operatives.


"Just paying it forward, Thirteen." Simon blinks as Warhorse crumples, "Nice shooting." A few steps forward, and he kicks away the rifle of the erstwhile sniper at the base of the arch, then starts to ascend the rockfall at the side of the bridge, loosing one hand from his pistol to climb, "Green checking on target and asset. One down at the base, one on the trail. And glad to hear, it Lancer." His thumb lets up on the comm button, speaking quietly in person rather than over the radio, "R — Courtier, you still with us?"


As silence reigns, Sharon rises from the darkness and shoulders her rifle. She begins her approach, but it's cautious: the littlest Carter has become rather paranoid of late. More so than usual, even for a spy.

"We should get moving as soon as we can. If nothing else, the police will be on us here before long. Can't have a firefight without people noticing, even in New York."

At least not in the Bronx.


"Agreed." Comes Dani's voice, "I'll grab the medkit and bring the van closer and check on the two that initially attacked us." She adds and with a look to Green and Rami and finally Sharon, Dani turns to trot to the van parked not so terribly far away in front of that Dunkin Donuts.

"Keep the comms open." The Cheyenne adds over her shoulder, just in the office chance something more might happen.


Agent Lin's voice comes over the comms, her words still fierce if not a bit stressed. "Secure the target. Report on operatives? Any medical assistance needed?"

For Courtier, she is leaning back too deeply against the barrier. She looks exhausted, on the verge of sleep. She blinks several times, looking up at Simon in confusion. "Courtier?"

Lin's voice comes back in reply to Sharon. "Thirteen, we're incoming. You're right about the NYPD. Radio chatter indicates they will be on your position in five minutes. We should be there in two. Be ready to load in."


Simon approaches Courtier and Warhorse, taking the quickest method to check if the latter is awake — a swift kick between the legs. When the rogue agent — the male rogue agent — doesn't move, Simon holsters his pistol and kneels down at Courtier's side, checking her split brow with a light touch and then working to get her sitting up a bit more with an arm behind her back, "You've hit your head, Rami." And then he clicks his comms open again, "Lancer is hurt, but functional, right Lancer? Four bandits down. Asset possible concussion."


"Rami," she repeats her name softly, trying to let it anchor her. She floats still, leaning heavily into Simon. She wines when he touches her brow, and then again when he settles her upright. She looks around slightly, searching for familiar details. Then she looks into the freckled features of the Agent, and then she breathes out a slow exhale. "Simon."

Below, there's the sound of the van cutting across sidewalk and grass, and it arrives at the base of the bridge. The back opens, and two agents spill out to assist securing Warhorse, and providing some quick first aid to Rami. "She will need more medical attention, but we can do that back at home base," the medic tells Simon and Moonstar. Then the medic is helping ease Rami up to her feet so they can get her into the van.


Simon nods as she repeats her name, and then catches his, "Good, no short-term memory problems then." Because he's all in the short-term memory. The whining causes him to slip into Punjabi, "Stay with me. Help is on the way." As the agents peel up, he switches back to English and gestures with one hand down toward the base of the arch again, "I'll get her in. One up the path, one down under the bridge, Lancer has one by him too. Moonstar's on hers." And then he's looking back to Rami, sticking with English, "Get that arm around my shoulders, Rami. We're getting in the van. I promise there'll be donuts."


"I'm here," Rami says in low, uncertain Punjabi. Then she is being hauled up to her feet, and her arm slips immediately around Simon's shoulders at his encouragement. She leans deeply into him, letting him take her lead. The agents nod to Simon's directions, and take off to fetch the other targets spread throughout the park. Lancer is being brought in with his arm across the shoulders of another agent, the man looking pasty even in the shadows. He nods slightly toward Simon, but his head bobbles a bit.

The two injured agents are brought into the rear of the van. Another van streaks its way across the grass to load up the prisoners. There is just another minute before NYPD is supposed to be arriving, and SHIELD is closing their van doors with thirty seconds left.


Simon keeps a little crouched over, although he doesn't have to hunch too far, given Rami's height, and he loops one arm around her back, hustling her into the van with the other agents and getting her settled down in a seat and buckled in. He returns Lancer's nod and leans forward across the van to squeeze the man's shoulder a little gently, "Hang on, man. We're about to burn rubber." And then he sits back alongside Rami, dropping back into Punjabi, "Ready to see a shield escape?"


Lancer needs help getting buckled in, as does Rami — though the Indian woman does all she can to secure herself. She glances up toward Simon when he settles beside her. She turns her brown eyes to him, and confusion passes her eyes again at his Punjabi. Then she realizes that he has used the actual Punjabi word for 'shield.' "No," she admits after a heartbeat, cracking into a tired smile. "But if it means I get rest." Then the van suddenly fires up its engine, and it's taking off toward the closest exit of the park, ready to blaze itself back toward the quin-jet that will transport them the rest of the way to the Triskelion.


Settling his arm around Rami's shoulders — just to brace her head, of course — Simon uses the base of his shirt to dab at the blood on her face, showing off the armor underneath. Shifting back to English, he nods, "Soon. After the medics take a look at you." He rocks as the van takes off, murmuring, "High-ho Silver, away." There's a pause, and then he adds, "So how'd it go? Besides, you know, the bleeding head wound."


The question irritates her. She's tired. She wants to sleep, but she instead is being asked a question. She turns slightly toward him with a squinting look, and she winces before she can speak as he's daubing at her head wound. "He's after something… something in the information from New Mexico." She doesn't realize she's sharing more than she should. "Something about Michael, but I think that's just a small piece of it." Her voice sounds drowsier the more she talks. "I think… I need to separate the difference… between an obsession… and a puzzle piece." She furrows her brow, shaking her head slightly.


The irritation is… well, it's part of what Simon's going for, especially as she's starting to get drowsy. "No, you're not going to sleep." He glances across the van to study Lancer, to make sure that his fellow SHIELD agent is getting the help he needs, then he looks back to Rami, "Good thing that it's not a relationship. Neither obsession or puzzle is really good for that." His shirt is now all bloody, and he shifts in his seat, working his bruised shoulder, "So…" he stops, smothering the instinct to dig for more information, a pointed decision, "…did you try to put your batons through his head?"


"You're bloody irritating with how you keep talking." Parambir then sighs heavily as she starts to straighten up a bit, pulling herself upright slightly. "Yes… I did. But his head kept moving." She glances across toward Lancer who is being wrapped from chin to collarbone in gauze, pressure being placed gently at the deep grooves from the garrote. Her mouth turns into a sharp frown, and finally she nods slightly. "I'm sorry for the bathroom," she finally says to Lancer, and he just grimaces.


"Yup." Simon nods cheerfully enough, "And we all tend to do that, don't we? No one likes to get their head hammered. That's alright though, I fell on my ass and nearly got stabbed by someone in yoga pants." The apology to Lancer draws a chuckle, "Sure, apologize while he can't say anything."


Both Rami and Lancer look at Simon at the same time when he mentions getting stabbed by someone with yoga pants. Then Rami shakes her head, leaning back against the seat. "You're shutting up now." She glances to him. "I just… I won't sleep. I promise. But please, love… shut up."


"Pretty blonde," Simon confirms, and then he's being told to shut up, and he chuckles, "If you close your eyes, I start talking again."


"Hmph," is all the Sikh replies.



In a shadowed corner, the sniper is breaking down his rifle with practiced, fluid ease and a still, determined expression. He's left no trace behind, except the undeniable forensics of the angle of entry to the wound in Warhorse's arm. It remains to be seen if SHIELD will bother to calculate that.

He finishes dismantling the weapon, then swings the bag with the hard case over his shoulder. His sidearm is in his hand as he moves off quickly through the night.

New Mexico in summer. Bloody brilliant.

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