Madness is like gravity, all is needed is a little push over the edge of nothingness.
here is a fine line between revenge and madness. One can walk along the border of both only to find themselves slip into the latter in a single moment. At what point does a quest to quell a need for justice become something more, something you can't come back from?
Revenge always starts with one single moment. A sin. A pain. A death. Some may say it could be as simple as stealing car. Others say the death of a loved one would be the trigger to begin mission of revenge. At first you are engulfed by it, the one sole singular purpose to hunt the the one who wrong you. You plan. You watch. You study. Then you hunt, and the pursuit against your wrong doer begins.
At first you start simple, perhaps breaking into their house, or stealing their car. Yet as time passes and the continuing shift of moons begins to wane on you, you become further and further unsatiated in your revenge. You begin to walk a line, one so fine it can hardly be seen. Once the line is crossed, there is no going back, no true redemption deep within you.
Did you set their house on fire? Take a family member hostage? At what point did you cross that faded line into a spiraling madness? At what point did you actually realize that the madness had overcome you? Madness is like gravity, all you needed was a little push. The madness has consumed you and now you can never truly return to the person you once were.
One round-trip each. No mistakes. No do-overs. Be careful. Look out for each other. This is the fight of our lives. Whatever it takes. Steve Rogers
ours passed since the moment Natasha Romanoff slipped from the grasp of her daughter and plummeted to the bitter cold slab of rock at the bottom of Vormirs mountain. Tony and Banner were in the lab working on a makeshift gaunlet to hold the stones. After they succeeded, everyone proceeded to argue over who would take on the possible fatal task of snapping half the universe back to existance. Clint had seperated from the group to stay with Aria, whom had hidden herself away in her room since she returned from Vormir. Clint had known Aria the longest among the group, having met her shortly after Natasha joined SHIELD. Aria had looked up to Clint like a father over the years having never known who her birth parents were.
That was until two years ago, when the young mutant returned to the compound after having disappeared three years prior. Tony was doing a slew of tests to get more information on how to disable and hopefully remove the HYDRA based chip in her mind without killing her. When he ran the blood work, he made a startling discovery, one that would change their lives forever. Tony Stak was none other than Arias biological father. At first the discovery had upset her, wondering if Tony had known all these years and simply neglected to tell her. But in time she realized of all people, Aria was the one person Tony had always been honest with, and she knew deeo down he had not lied about this either.
Since then they grew even closer, catching up on lost time from the prior three years she had been missing, and bonding in a way they hadn't before. After a lot of research together they did manage to find information on who her mother was, but the woman unfortunately died in Russia during childbirth. Tony barely remember her, a woman he had only had a brief relationship with back in his younger and far less intelligient party days. Playboy was certainly a fitting title then and one he wore proudly, but he was different now, he had truly become a better person over the years and Aria had been there for all of it.
Natasha was glad Aria finally got answers to her families past after so long, something not even the widow herself had been able to uncover. She knew her mother had been killed by Dreykov, a woman who refused to give her up and fought till the very end for her daughter. Her father remained a mystery, but at least one puzzle was now solved and she could not be happier for her daughter.
Of course she couldn't be happy anymore, lying in a bloody heap at the bottom of the cliff. There was no emotion, no smile, no anger, only nothingness to surrounding her body. Aria had lost the one person who meant the most to her, the woman who saved her from the Red Room all those years ago.
Aria wrapped her arms tightly around her stomach which had been aching for hours now. There wasn't much the girl had been able to do but stare at the wall of her room, watching the scene of Natashas hand slipping over and over and over again. It was like a movie playing in her mind much like her nightmares, but this time she was awake, and this time the reel never stopped spinning on the metal gears of his mind. Clint sat down on the bed next to her, placing a light hand upon her shoulder.
"Come on kiddo... please talk to me.." Aria only shook her head, pinching her eyes closed to lock away the fresh batch of tears that threatened to overun. "Aria..." Clint knew she was hurting, knew he could not force her to open up. Natasha was his friend, his best friend, she was everything to him. Their relationship was unique, not in a way that they were a couple, but in a way that they were comletely inseperable. It was like half his soul had been ripped out of him leaving a gapping hole behind. If he felt this way, he could not even remotely imagine how broken Aria felt, having been the one Natasha had raised since she was only five years old.
Aria suddenly felt a heavy pit in her stomach, one so strong it cause her to inhale sharply, her eyes snapping open. Clint gazed at her in concern, knowing by her reaction that something was wrong. Something beyond Nat. "What is it, what do you feel..?" He had known her long enough, he knew her reactions, her "feelings", and this one seemed far worse than ones in the past. Whatever it was, it was bad. Before the girl could even reply, everything around them exploded, causing them both to be thrown from the bed and into the wall. As they hit the ground Aria tried to reach out and grab Clint, but the floor collapsed beneath him and her scream was sucked away far below.
Flickering eye lids, a faint struggled cough, a garbled groan of pain. Everything was dark, dust filled the air, and a soft glowing of orange could be seen reflecting against the ceiling, if that was even the ceiling anymore. Aria tried to blink herself into focus and take in what had just happened. Her grief had made her vulnerable, and she didn't have time to react, didn't have time to erect a barrier, didn't have time..... CLINT. Where was he? She now struggled to push herself up, desperate to find any sign of him. A soft cry of pain pushed past pale petals as it felt like needles were shooting up her arm. A strained turn of her head revealed a chunk of concrete has crushed her arm. Focus was far from anything she could reach, limiting her ability to access her powers. Red hazed across her vision, crimson liquid dripping down from a nasty gash on her head.
"Clint!" Aria called out, her voice cracking from the dryness of the dirt she had inhaled. There were so many sounds around her, water rushing, fire burning, and... skittering?? Breathes quickened as worry washed over here. Where the hell was he, he couldn't be dead, not after Nat. She tried to focus on the concrete, tried to move it from her arm so she could look for him, but the strain was too much on her compromised body.
"Hey I got you!" A voice sounded from behind, before a familiar face appeared in view. Scott wasted no time working to remove the chunk of cold rock off her arm. He warned it would hurt like hell, but she didn't care. She had to find Clint, had to find the others, had to find her dad. Scott seemed to have no idea what happened. Bruce had managed to do the snap and everything was quiet for a moment before all hell broke loose. Teeth gritted firmly, a stifled cry as he managed to lift the rock off her. Aria managed to get to her feet with his help and looked around for Clint.
Rhodey and Bruce climbed out from some rubble and Arias eyes widened at the sight of Bruces arm. He shook his head when he saw her, assuring he would be ok. The gauntlet was powerful and this was expected. It was a miracle he survived it's power. Aria kept her arm close to her, the bones clearly having been crushed by the concrete. The pain barely bothered her as her mind was on far more important things.
After they managed to find Clint and Rocket, Scott used his particle disks to shrink them therefor small enough to hold in his own hand before going giant. The irony for Ant Man to be the size of a twenty story building always amused the girl, but at the moment, she was greatlful for the technology. When they got to the surface, they were greeted with hoards of alien creatures, and the purple raisin stood there ready to wage war and destroy them all. Injured or not, Aria would fight, and she would not go down without taking at least a hundred of them with her.
Hundreds on either side charged for each other and the battle became a bloodied war. Heroes from all sides of the galaxy fighting side by side to defeat the great evil that threatened them. The young mutant managed to clear her head enough to focus on the scene before her before moving forward to eliminate her targets one by one. She utilized her abilites as her arm gave her limited physical range, and focused on anything that got too close. The snap of bones echoed around her as her mind pinpointed each creature and shattered their neck and spine from within, killing them instantly. The battle went on, blood spilling on both sides of the field. The fight was only interupted by a rocketing of missles from above. The girls focus immdiately changed, errecting a barrier above her to protect her from the blasts. Using that much power above her, her sides became vulnerable and she was eventually throw by one missle that landed to close to her.
Everything was quiet, the strained hum of chaos around her as her ears tried to regain their function. It didn't end, the fighting, the creatures, everything continued on raging against each other for what could be forever. Aria finally caught sight of her father, and eyes widened at the site of him going head to head with Thanos. "Dad.." Anger seethed within her, and she pushed forward again taking out creatures as she went and trying to make her to help him.
Tony paused. Thanos lifted a hand. Aria froze in fear. This was the end. She closed her eyes.
Blue hues emerged. Nothing had changed. They were alive. But how? Why? Thanos appeared confused, and a sickening jolt hit Aria as she caught sight of her father, his raised armored hand.... and the stones. "No...."
"I... am.... Iron Man."
The quietness began to spread, one by one the creatures dusting into nothingness. Tony took a stumbled step forward. Aria ran harder than she ever had in her life. When she dropped down to her knees beside him, he was leaned against a large boulder, half his body burned beyond healing. Arias eyes filled with tears as she placed her good hand against her cheek shaking her head.
"Dad... dad please.. You're gonna be ok... You have to be. You have to be..." Salted streams now streaked down her dusty cheeks, Tony gazing into her eyes with both love and pain. Tony Stark, the man who the world once thought nothing of but a spoiled rich kid, giving his life to save that very world. The ultimate sacrifice. Aria knew of the one path that could succeed, the one in fourteen million. Stephan Strange knew Tony would die in this moment, yet let it come to pass. Could fate be this cruel? Could the timeline be so certainly set in stone?
Aria intertwined her fingers within his own and nodded, trying to fight back the tears once more. "It's ok... We're gonna be ok... I love you Dad... I love you." The light in his eyes faded as the final breathe slipped past his burnt lips. The blue glow of the arc reactor dimmed, he has falling limp out of her own. Blue hues vanished once more behind closed lids as the girls head dropped. Her mother was gone only hours before, and now she had lost her father too. She could feel her heart break over the defeaning silence that surrounding her. There was no speaking, no movements, nothing. Only quiet sorrow as they watched Tony Stark fade away.
Whatever it takes... Did Steve know? Did he know it would take so much?
One round-trip each. No mistakes. No do-overs. Be careful. Look out for each other. This is the fight of our lives. Whatever it takes. Steve Rogers
T New York
he risks were astronomical. The odds slim to none. One wrong little step and the entire operation could go completely sideways. When you mess with time there was no room for error, no second chances or do-overs. Get in, get what you need, and get out before anyone sees you, especially past versions on yourself.
Aria hated the idea, every bit of it. Even as she and her mom suited up for the task ahead, she had a bad feeling about it. If there was one thing everyone knew about Aria's feelings, is that they were never wrong, and they were never good. Six stones, three teams, a single chance at saving the world, or more so bringing it back from being lost. Aria understood why it had to happen, it was what they did, what they always did, save the ones who couldn't save them selves no matter the cost. Unfortunately she had no idea just how high that cost would be.
"You ready for this?" The young woman asked of her mom, the assassin who had rescued her from the Red Room when she was just a little girl. Natasha glanced over and nodded.
"Are you?" Natasha replied, zipping up the suit and grabbing her daughters hand, cold fingers giving her own a tight squeeze.
"I have a bad feeling... but I know we can't ignore this chance." That feeling was something that would only grow until it became unbearable.
"It's time." Natasha said, now both woman walking to join the rest of the group. Steve gave everyone a pep talk, making sure heads were clear and focused to avoid any incidents. Whatever it takes. Steves words from earlier that day echoed in her mind. They owed it to the world to at least try, so here they were risking everything to do just that. Aria exchanged a glance with Tony as they stood on the platform, a forced look of determination. Tony Stark had a different destination despite arguments of who would be sent where. He wanted Aria on his team to make sure he could watch her back. Tony had always been protective of her ever since they met when she was only seven. After they found out two years ago that he was her biological father, that desire to protect was fueled even more.
Silenced footsteps connected with the arid ground beneath the Milano. Vormir. The destination Aria and Natasha were sent to to retrieve the soul stone. That feeling grew intensely causing a worried look to flash across her face. Step by step they made their way up the mountainside in silence, even the sound from their feet seemed to dissipate in the dry air. Tension grew the close they came to the top, the two stopping a few feet short as a cloaked figure approached. Natasha drew her gun, Aria her daggers, both ready to take out whatever threat lie before them. Was it a challenge? A way to protect the soul stone? Whatever it takes. Steve's words echoing in her mind again, a reminder of what had to be done as she observed the cloaked being before them.
"Welcome Aria, daughter of Tony. Natasha, daughter of Ivan." Aria's gaze did not leave the strange figure. Temptations tugged at her to simply use her abilities and dispose of him, but curiosity made her take pause. Natasha questioned the identity of the man, or shadow of a man more so. He claimed to be a guide, one for any who sought the soul stone. Natasha feigned gratefulness before half demanding for the stone so they could leave. The words from the shadow, a claim of not being so easy, sent a chill down Arias spine, exacerbating that feeling even more.
"That which you seek lies in front of you, as does what you fear. In order to take the stone, you must loose that which you love. An everlasting exchange, a soul for a soul."
Natasha sat in thought, her mind trying to play out every scenario while Aria paced anxiously. There had to be another way, there was always another way. Was Aria ready to sacrifice herself for the world, for all those whose lives were extinguished in a single second? Maybe not, but she would do it to save her mother there was absolutely no doubt in her mind about it. The young womans gaze shifted back to the edge, anxious foot falls now stopping in place. Chilled fingers tightened around the dagger hilt at her side, and a soft deep breathe allowed her the moment she needed to convince herself. Did she really need convincing? Probably not, but the focus of her mind would certainly help. Aria wanted to turn around, face her mother, kiss her, hug her, just one more time. Yet she knew such an action would no doubt give her intentions away and Natasha would stop at nothing to keep her from going over the edge. A single tear rolled down her cheek, slowed by the cold arid air around them. Her foot pushed hard against the dirt, lunging her towards the edge in hopes she was quicker than Natasha, her mom, "that which she loved".
The sudden movement was interrupted only a few feet from the edge as Natasha tackled her to the ground, sending them both rolling closer to the edge. Firm arms pinned Aria to the ground, a mix of fear, anger, and sadness washing over her face.
"What the hell are you doing Aria!" Natasha screamed, trying to fight back tears.
"Whatever it takes!" The young woman snapped back, echoing Steves words determination strong though her voice was crippled with threatening emotions.
"That was not your choice to make. I have to be the one who goes and you know it." Aria pushed the woman off her, shaking her head as she tried to process how close the edge was.
"No.... No you don't. Mom please, let me do this. Let me finally be free." Aria knew full well her pleas would go unheard, but she had to try to distract her just long enough. The moment they landed on Vormir, Aria had discovered she couldn't access her abilities other wise this would be a far easier task. It was in this moment Natasha realized it and knew she could use it to her advantage, turning and running the last few steps towards the edge. Aria bolted up, reaching out to grab her hand at the last moment. Without her powers to aid her, the weight of her mother pulled down hard on her shoulder, nearly causing her hand to slip free as she dangled off the edge. Natasha gave a nod, and a small smile.
"It's ok. You have to let me go." Her words stabbed through Aria like an ice pick, and she refused to let go of the woman who saved her, raised her, gave her a life all those years ago. Arias hand tightened around hers, but when Natasha kicked against the wall she could not hold on against the momentum of the swing. The shrill scream from the girl was whisked away by the vast open air as Natashas body hit the icy cold stone below, red liquid seeping out of the now lifeless corpse. Aria turned over onto her back pushing away from the edge, and squeezing her eyes shut as if convincing herself it were only a bad dream. An open mouth attempted to scream again, but no sound came from it. A bright flash of light shot upwards into the sky before everything went dark.
Eyelids flickered exposing blue hues. Cold water felt across the skin.Consciousness wrapped back around the girl prompting her to sit up quickly searching for any signs that her mother was alive. The mountain was far in the distance now, and the ankle deep water she found herself in seemed to be a vast river. Upon realization that it was not simply some horrible nightmare, her head sunk and tears again fought to break free of their damn. As her hand shifted in the water something could be felt within. A brow furrowed as she lifted it upwards from the icy liquid and slowly curled back her fingers. A bright gold glow emitted from her palm only further confirming the dark realization that her mother was truly gone.
The rush through the quantaum tunnel pushed through Aria as she was pulled back into the present. This time she barely even processed it, too far lost in her own grief to grasp too hard onto reality. When she appeared back on the platform, the helmet retracted back into her suit, and the girl stood frozen as the others tried to determine if they really had suceeded. Suddenly a silence washed over the room as the others gazes caught site of Aria. Clint was the first to speak up.
"Where's Nat..?" Clint didn't want to know the answer, his heart already breaking seeing the look of deep loss across the girls features. Tony shook his head, and Bruce dropped down to one knee as tears filled Arias eyes. She felt empty inside like the biggest chunk of her heart had been ripped out of her chest. There was no processing the scene around her, the looks of the others or their lack of questions of what happened. After a moment staring off into nothingness, she felt warm arms wrap around her, ones that finally snapped her out of her daze. As Tony hugged his daughter, tears finally burst free of their damn, a wail of sorrow shoved forth by her lungs as she collapsed into Tony's arms. Her mother was gone....
This list is probably missing a couple things here and there, but it gets the idea down and holds me accountable for my owes. I am still open to accept MCU muse ideas (You give me any MCU muse and I will see if I can write a drabble). I love random starters if anyone wants to send one to my inbox or discord, or I do have a simple starter I am happy to send to anyone who would like it. If I missed anyone, PLEASE let me know. My messages are a disaster! This list will be updated daily. #DiscordIsSuperior
Madness Prompt by PDR Completed 9/14 Shopping Together for ʜᴇʟʟᴏ ᴋɪᴛᴛʏOn Hold 9/14 In a Fairytale for Wʀᴇᴄᴋɪɴɢ𝓑𝓪𝓵𝓵In Thought Process 9/14 "See, it's not haunted" for ғragмenтed On Hold 9/14 Selcouth, Balter, Petrichor for ℜ𝔢𝔦𝔫𝔢𝔱𝔱𝔢In Thought Process 9/16 Hiraeth, Pyrrhic, Apricity for Wʀᴇᴄᴋɪɴɢ𝓑𝓪𝓵𝓵In Thought Process 9/16 Is that my shirt? forWʀᴇᴄᴋɪɴɢ𝓑𝓪𝓵𝓵 In Thought Process 9/16 Do you believe in love? (HK to AS) for ʜᴇʟʟᴏ ᴋɪᴛᴛʏIn Thought Process 9/16 Asking for help doesn't make you weak (IJ to AS) forINFINITE JUSTICE.In Thought Process 9/16 You ruined everything (AS to FA) Fe AvengerIn Thought Process 9/16
"I would rather share one lifetime with you, than face all the ages of this world alone."
L ove is such a finicky thing. It sneaks up on you in ways you could never imagine. Love is the most natural human emotion, but it is also the most dangerous. In the world of Middle Earth, love was unpredictable. Battles drew men away from their wives, never to see them again. Young boys, just old enough to show the smallest bit of stubble on their faces, could be torn from their mothers arms. It was a different kind of love, but it was love none the less. Love and heartbreak came hand in hand.
There was one kind of love however that rose above all others. One of which no other could match. Forbidden Love. When two people fell in love with one another but for one reason or another were prevented from doing so, it would draw them even closer together. It was humanities way of testing the fates.
Aragorn knew of this forbidden love all too well. It was one that was not only pure but also painful. Elrond did not approve of his love for Arwen, and hers for the ranger from the north. They had met many moons ago, when Aragorn was growing up in Rivendell long before he became a ranger. He had mistaken the beauty in the forest as Lúthien, only to learn later of her true identity and grew closer to her ever since.
Aragorn was warned of his ill-fated love for Arwen, the mortal ranger from the north and the immortal high-elf of Rivendell. An impossible kind of love that only caused it to grow stronger. Elrond wished only for his daughters life, to take the ship into the west to the undying lands. He tried to convince Arwen that there was only death for her in this world, but she had seen the boy, the child in her vision of the future. It was a message of hope, of a love that would triumph over all.
I stand here now, crowned King of Gondor under the white tree. The time has passed for my love to sail to the undying lands, claiming her immortality. Our love was forbidden, despite the stories of the same forbidden love, the one of legends between Lúthien and Adan. I wanted only for her to be happy, yet part of me believes she would not find that happiness in the west.
Elrond steps forward, a respectful nod of his head to the new king. Long had he awaited to see Aragorn step forward and take the place that was his birthright. He had told Aragorn once that Arwen would marry no man less than the king of Gonder, and it was a word that would become true. A small step to the side revealed a flag of Rivendell, the face hidden behind slowly coming into view. At first I don't believe it's real, I don't trust my sight to what stands before me. Had she truly defied her father and stayed behind, giving up her undying life?
It was real. Their love. This moment. Her beauty. It was all real, only solidified as he stepped forward and kissed her, smiles and cheers surrounding them at the happy union. Their love was no longer forbidden, no longer at risk of being torn apart. It was whole now, as pure as the White Tree of Gondor beside them, fraying white flowers among the crowd.
"Do you think what makes a Loki a Loki, is that we always loose?"
Decades of running, hunting, killing. All my life was leading up to one very specific goal, to destroy the TVA and all those who stood in my way. People like those who run the TVA didn't deserve to exist in the universe, wielding the power to simple wipe you away in an instant if you so much as thought of freewill. Yet Fate is a funny thing, one that will always be there even when you try to run from it.
But what cruel twist of fate led me to this moment now, with him. Surely this isn't the path we were meant to follow, two Loki's working together. Loki's are too stubborn to work together, get along with each other, look out for anyone but themselves. We are one in the same, aren't we? No, he was different, open and willing to see beyond the black and white of the task ahead. He was yanked from his own timeline, one ripe with destruction, but the god who sat there next to her was not the same who appeared in the desert.
Is it possible for us to change? To test fate and make our own lives. Everything I know tells me Lokis are always the villain, it didn't matter what universe they came from. A memory suddenly invades my thoughts as I gaze at him. The memory suddenly made me realize something. I was not a villain. I was not hell bent on destroying Asgard, or taking the thrown, or become Queen of Jotenheim. I remember the toys in my hand, the way they felt as I played out the scene in my room. In one hand, a dragon attacking Asgard, my home. In the other an Asgardian warrior, a woman known as a Valkyrie.
It suddenly dawns on me why the TVA took me from my home and destroyed it without hesitation. I wasn't a Loki, not one that was following the chaotic tendencies laid out by a prewritten fate. In the scene played out in my room, I was defending Asgard, admiring the woman upon the winged creature. I wanted to be good.
"I wanted to be good. I wanted to protect Asgard, become a Valkyrie. I never wanted the throne. That was my Nexus event." Sylvie said quietly, gazing off in thought. Fate had a funny way of twisting thoughts but now she understood things so much better. Fate led them here because she wanted to make a difference. It led her here to Loki who was now on the same path.
ood morning! Or afternoon/evening, depending when you get this.
I am sending out greetings to everyone on my list. I recently picked up this account for a very very old friend, and am excited to get started writing some amazing stories with everyone here. Whether you were here before, or are a recent add, I wanted to reach out and connect, and eventually build a storyline with you.
A little bit about myself; I have been writing for 21 years, since the days of MySpace. I have done many verses and characters over the years and writing is one of my biggest passions. This is the first OC I have done in a while but I have known of this character since it’s creation and the previous owner and I are confident I can portray her well. (Scroll down for more)
While IC drama, angst, pain, love, torture, etc, are wonderful, I do not tolerate OOC drama whatsoever. Anyone trying to bring drama into this page will be promptly deleted. I am sorry to say I am no where near as kind-hearted and forgiving as my predecessor.
I do have other accounts, plus real life, so patience is appreciated. Though I may reply quickly some days, others may be delayed. I am multi-LI with chemistry, and a multi para to novella length writer. If I add mains to my page, those people will get priority replies.
As agreed with the previous owner of this account, Arias HYDRA backstory will remain in tact. Updated backstory prior will be updated soon. Her parents will remain a mystery until I find a storyline or characters who wish to fill those roles. I do not wish to also pick up the role of the original mother “Avaren” and the writer has retired, so this was the easiest fix. Anything before the age of 16 will be updated.
If you were a prior connection with this character, whether friend, family, or foe, I am sorry to say that it will be scrapped. I wish to get to know each writer, style, and character, and jumping into premade storylines will be too much for me to manage on top of everything else.
If you have any questions, or wish to start an amazing storyline, don’t hesitate to ask! I know this was a lengthy greeting compared to most, but this is a unique circumstance. I do love random starters, so if you just want to jump in headfirst, don’t hesitate, that is how some of the best stories start! I only ask you keep it moderately logical to this character and where she may be seen. I greatly look forward to writing with you.
TRIGGER WARNINGS: Direct references to torture and implied references to sexual assault of a minor (Age 16). Dark writing ahead.
You think you know my pain, understand it, but you couldn't be more wrong. You could never know the damage freedom and trust have caused me.
Freedom. Trust. The two most dangerous concepts of humanity. True freedom is but a myth, a ruse to trick you into believing you have no bonds holding you back. You think you have your life under control, every aspect of it within your grasp, but in reality the aspect of freedom is just an illusion. It could be a simple thing, freedom to drive your car, walk down the street, or even talk to a passerby. Everything you do has rules, laws, and etiquette to follow. You aren't free to just drive a car, it must be bought, registered, insured, and approved by another to make sure you can even operate the thing without being a lunatic. Even something as little as talking to another person comes with a slurry of things you can and can't do.
For me, my illusion of freedom is far more complicated than most. My own mind became the prison keeping me from my freedom. Memories of the past now creep up every chance they can get. Long ago it started with the Red Room, but now those memories have been replaced with something far more vile. A year out of 19 may not seem like much, but one solider within HYDRA made sure it was the longest of my life. Many think they know the pain I lived through, the things they did to attempt to break me, crush me, turn me into their weapon, but they are so very wrong. The electricity running through my skin burned like wildfire, each jolt igniting every cell in my body. The pain was real, there was no doubt about that, but it is not the pain that haunts me now.
Trust. Something I thought I had found in a single person back in the dour damp halls of HYDRA. A man, a solider, whom I met only on the second day of my captivity. He was kind and gentle as he escorted me back to me cell. He said it would be ok, that things would soon get better. He was not like the other rough handed soliders within HYDRAS ranks. The pain of the eletrical treatments made me compromised, made me believe I could trust his words. But like freedom, trust is a myth even worse, as it can be your true downfall.
A memory now tickles at my mind, one I try daily to push away. Long gangly fingers grazing alongside my cheek, a thumb wiping the tear that slipped from my eye when the realization of my trust in him had been betrayed. There was no escape, no freedom from the four cold cracked concrete walls of my cell and the locked door behind me. No one would come to my rescue, tell me I was safe from the sour breathe of the man standing before me. The memory does not release me from my prison, freedom and trust now laughing in my face as I feel the scratchiness of his rough cut facial hair against my pale skin and bent fingers rough against the back of my neck. I'm trapped against the wall, the cold concrete stinging my already raw back through my thin torn shirt, and I feel powerless against the mans pleasured advances.
That night seemed to last forever, and it was the one I remember most clearly, like a movie playing in my head on broken repeat. There were many other nights like this that followed, but eventually my memory starts to blur, becoming hazy as the repeated visits from the soldier continued on for months. When I finally escaped a year later, I made the grave mistake of feeling that hope for freedom. There was no freedom for me, he had made sure of it. Night after night, the prison of my mind reminded me why I was trapped, stuck in a vicious cycle of never ending pain. They think they know why I scream at night, why the things in my room explode as my powers lash out at the sight of his face in my dreams. They could not be any more wrong. Freedom and trust come at a price, a profound illusion.
Could she possibly have come up with any stupider of a decision? The girl, hunted by HYDRA, a target that could be turned in a single second, out in the world, yet worse the busy streets of New York City. Nope. This was about as bad of a decision as they came, but she knew she needed to find him, the man responsible for everything that happened to her in those dour damp halls of HYDRA.
Focus had to be kept, gripped onto tightly as it tried to slip away. Focus on her surroundings, focus on the people, and most important, focus on her mind and the memories that tried to come forth. A clear head was the only thing that would keep her from getting herself killed or worse. She would have to wait for Natasha to kill her later when she found out she had snuck out of the safe house.
A firm shoulder brushed against the young woman, followed by another and another. The crowded streets of NYC were bustling with denizens moving in all directions, hurrying to work, school, and other destinations. The thud of her heart was quickening, and anxiety building with each bump of another against her. Aria had spent two years isolated on the run after her year with HYDRA, making this the first time she had been out in the world since she was taken. This truly was a terrible idea.
A hooded sweater hid her from the world, from prying eyes and building cameras. Any one of the busy New Yorkers passing her could be HYDRA, any one of them carrying the trigger that activate the chip they had put in her head. In the blink of an eye, she would be their weapon, one that with her powers would be very hard to stop.
A hard bump made her stumble forward a bit, an inhaled breathe and startled “oh” escaping her lips. She turned to apologize, only to be met with anger. “Watch where your going!” The man huffed, walking away before she could even react. Aria turned and continued down the sidewalk, her breathes growing unsteady as the crowds began to thicken even more. Her mind began to betray her, focus slipping from her grasp. She moved to lean against a building wall, panicked breathes taking over her calm demeanor. Too many people. Too much commotion. The girl began overwhelmed, shaking her head as if trying to escape from a bad dream.
”What the hell??” A voice stated nearby, causing sharp blue eyes to gaze over. It was a man serving lunch to the busy pass bys, his surprised question in reaction to his hot dog cart which had begun shaking violently. The woman’s eyes widened, quickly realizing her panicked state was causing her abilities to lash out.