chapter nine

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09 x trying to figure it out

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I dozed on and off for a while, my body trying to compensate for the burst of energy it had used up. At some point, I did fall asleep, but once I realized I was waking up I jerked, grabbing onto his shirt reflexively.

"Hey, hey," he mumbled, squeezing my shoulder. "You are fine."

I sat up some, turning to catch a glimpse of his face. From the looks of it, he'd been asleep, too. His blue eyes were cloudy. "Are you?" I asked quietly.

He chuckled low in his chest. "I am. You may burn hot, but I heal fast. Part of super speed."

I lay my head back down onto his shoulder then, letting my eyes flutter shut again. "Whatever you say, Road Runner," I muttered. "Did the others come back?"

"Yes," Pietro agreed. "While you were sleeping."

I snickered, blinking my eyes open again. "That's a movie, you know."

"I did not know. One I should watch?"

"Do you like Sandra Bullock?"

"I do not know what a Sandra Bullock is."

"Then we'll see," I sighed, before sitting up completely. Pietro was slow to let me go. It surprised me - I didn't know the speedster could do anything slow.

"Where are you going?" he asked, watching me as I straightened and stretched.

I watched him for a moment, having to think through my answer slowly. My brain was still frazzled. "I need to talk to Tony and Bruce," I said, more decisively than I felt.

"I can come with you," he offered, straightening faster than I had.

"Or, I can go by myself," I said with a pointed look.

He frowned. "You do not want me to come?"

"That's not what I said." I headed toward the exit, pausing for a split second to shove off the brief blackening on the outside of my vision. Stupid headaches were a pain, but not one I'd be letting onto after my latest episode. "I just . . . I haven't had episodes so close together," I admitted quietly. "Ever."

I could feel his gaze boring into my back. "You are concerned."

"I want to know if they found anything when they did their scans," I corrected. "Anything I might not already know." When I looked over at him he was nodding slowly.

"I understand."

I relaxed (since when did I go tense?) and nodded in response. "Um, I can . . . find you after, if that's okay."

He chuckled. "Right, because you do so well with the navigating. I will find you."

I figured leaving him without making a sassy remark was probably the best thank you I could give him.

"Miss Sinclair?" a British, male voice asked me once I'd stepped out of the room with Pietro.

"Yes, bodiless voice?" I asked, arching my brows as I looked around the hall in moderate confusion.

"My name is JARVIS, Miss. I am Mr. Stark's personal intelligence system. I overheard you were looking for Mr. Stark and Dr. Banner."

All right, so it was weird, but I'd experienced weirder. "Yeah, I'm looking for the science squad. Quick question, how is it you're polite, when Tony's a smart mouth?"

"I do not believe I am privileged to answer that question, Miss Sinclair. I can only recommend you ask Mr. Stark. As for he and Dr. Banner, they are several floors above you. Would you like me to direct you there?"

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