|vαи dyиє (punches) wrote in avengers_logs,|
@ 2018-04-22 21:20:00
|It was a very busy day for Scott. His head felt a little bit like a ping pong ball, trying to process all the great ‘newness’ of his current--well, everyone’s--current predicament. He didn’t know a whole lot about time and space or that sort of stuff, but he was smart enough to know that things were probably a mess and that Doctor Strange wasn’t showing up on doorsteps with ‘welcome to the confusion’ for nothing. Things were probably going to get wild.|
Before that happened, he needed to address the things that were within his control.
He’d finally gotten ahold of Cassie and explained very plainly why he had to stay in New York. She was as understanding as ever, even if he’d miss her after finally just starting to get regular visitations pre-Airport Fight. And Hope and Hank deserved an explanation. Scott was just glad that Hope was here with him. They could figure everything out together.
She was better at the bigger picture stuff than he was. Sorting out the basics and what was important? Sure. But working with the Pym/Van Dyne team had been nothing but successful so far--and then he went rogue again, so. He’d probably have to stop doing that.
He only got there first because his legs had raced as fast as his mind, apartment conveniently only a few blocks down and his light blue eyes were just staring at the menu. He wanted to order something for Hope but for the life of him had no idea what she’d pick in a place that really was...very fancy.
Almost too fancy. Like, he felt underdressed to be buying and drinking tea here.
Not to worry, the tea aficionado was here - she’d received the recommendation from Dr. Strange, and so far Hope was impressed. Soft jazz music and the sounds of boiling water, a soothing comfort, would be a good backdrop for this conversation she was about to have with Scott - they had some things to hash out, and some aspects would likely not be pretty, but she knew that they’d be okay when the dust settled. She wasn’t going anywhere - she wanted to make sure he felt the same.
“Hi there,” her voice was low and sultry - the same tone she’d used when informing him about Paraponera clavata (giant tropical bullet ants to the layperson), only this time she slipped her arms around him from behind. “Come here often?”
And it was apparent she wanted to see him, so Hope darted around and tackled Scott from the front. It was a hug, but she was only doing it so she didn’t punch him. Right. “Come on, let’s find a seat.” The cushions on the floor by the window were free; there was a pleasant view of the street below, people scurrying like ants (ironically).
Scott tensed only briefly out of instinct (the instinct to not fight back even though he’d been trained to) until he realised it was only Hope. Without a weapon. And surprisingly calm.
He let out a breath he didn’t know he’d been holding when she brought it in for the very tight hug. Something he was almost certain was a replacement for punch to the schnoz because they were in a public place. But Scott was glad to see Hope, angry or not, and hugged her back in relief. “Nope, but I hear it’s a great place to pick up girls who are very into tea and physical violence.” Aha. So funny, so nervous. It’s fine.
Really though, he did miss her and the more he was in her presence the more stupid he felt for not including her in what was actually just a split of the moment decision that didn’t allow for much.
He followed her over to the cushions by the window before taking a seat. Maybe the first seat he’d taken in awhile since figuring everything out, piecing it together again, and still finding himself lost in a broken timeline. At least now Hope was here. “I hope I didn’t miss anything? I can’t really make sense of time and what it was versus now.” The last part was whispered so maybe the other tea-goers wouldn’t think he was crazy. Maybe only for whispering half a sentence. “And you look great. How’s Hank?”
Miles away with both his tech and his daughter probably didn’t sit well with Dr. Pym. Along with Scott’s shenanigans. But he was genuinely curious. And too afraid to reach out with a text that probably wouldn’t get a truthful answer anyways.
“I don’t know, I haven’t exactly tried to explain all of this,” Hope replied, settling on a cushion and briefly consulting a menu. They would be free to socialize to their own devices, once orders were placed - she went with a pot of the duck shit tea, simply because she thought it’d amuse Scott. No, it wasn’t actual duck shit - the name was coined by the farmer who didn’t want the secrets of his cultivated tea to get out; it was really oolong, and delicious, all floral and toasty and tasting slightly of raw sugar.
She reached for his hand next, wanting the physical contact. “I only recently wrapped my head around it myself. But before I even got here, he was...well, he thought we were more of a team. We are, aren’t we? You left, Scott, I just - I want to make sure we’re still partners. Because you were gone and it was a crappy time and the fallout was even worse.”
Right the tea. Scott was about to just pick the first thing he saw on the menu before the words ‘duck shit tea’ left Hope’s mouth and he actually had to look down to see if it was there. Ok, yeah, there it was. He was just going to go with the Honey Orchid. Keep it simple and safe.
“I..” Was an asshole, that was probably a good start, but Scott found himself at a loss of words as the familiar veil of disappointment loomed over Hope’s words, even as she was holding his hand instead of punching him in the face.
He was really wishing she would have punched him in the face instead.
He’d fucked up again, so easily. Right when he had un-fucked himself. God. He was so good at that--so sure of doing ‘what was right’ again and the thought of everyone else and the repercussions kind of fell to the wayside. Again. Maybe it was a clinical illness. His own personal one, anyways.
“Hope I’m sorry,” He covered her hand with his other one, squeezing tightly so she knew he meant it. He always did. He was a very good thief and could bullshit his way through the Quantum Realm on a dime, but not a speck of malice towards the ones he loved. He wouldn’t lie, not about this. “Luis called and said that Falcon was looking for me. That whole ordeal was my fault so I wanted to sort it out and keep it away from you and Hank--I didn’t expect him to tell me that they actually needed help. It just really seemed like the right thing to do at the time and I totally should have pumped the breaks--but yes, we’re definitely partners--a team. The Avengers are a total mess anyways, or they were. I was just--I thought I was doing the right thing.”
Luis. Of course. Shouldn’t he be out plotting his next smoothie machine caper? But ultimately, Hope couldn’t be too upset - Scott was a cinnamon roll, and those ‘hardened criminals’ he ran with were also cinnamon rolls. Dopey ones, but still.
“I know - you always want to do the right thing,” she sighed fondly, returning the hand squeeze. “I was just worried, that’s all. I was afraid something happened to you - “ Something did happen; he got tossed in a prison for superpowered people, and it wasn’t your ordinary type of jail cell either. “And so was my father.” They had been worried about what they would have to do next, sure, but ultimately Scott was the most important thing - he was part of the family by now. The last thing Hank would want was for Hope to lose the person she cared about the same way he lost Janet.
Which made Hank more grouchier than usual when it came to his daughter teaming up with the new Ant-Man both professionally and personally, but anyway. She was a big girl and could make her own decisions in that regard. “From now on we work together though, okay? If the Avengers are a mess and they ask you to help, then fine, but you’re not going without me,” she stated firmly.
“Nah I’m fine, it was actually pretty cool. Not the prison part, but really seeing everyone else and what they’re capable of? The superhero world is a lot bigger than us….no pun intended. But we should probably do more testing with the uh, growth part. It’s still a kick in the nuts.” A tiny shiver went down his spine at just remembering his molecules trying to adjust from being larger than a plane. Getting shot at with rockets and bullets that were meant for destroying buildings. It was a rush, but he felt like he was going to die afterwards, and it wasn’t like Scott was out of shape.
He nodded in agreement, relieved that this was a lot less painful than it could have been. Probably largely in part to things being much bigger and greater a problem than him going rogue. But it wouldn’t happen again.
“No more solo missions, got it. And I don’t think we have much to worry about there, according to Tony Fart, the Avengers more or less disbanded, but I don’t beli--wait. You said you too. Did you guys finish the suit?”
“Oh, we finished it,” Hope grinned widely, a pleased flush rushing to her cheeks. She was so ready to get out there and be the new Wasp, making her mother proud - wherever Janet was. Maybe before she hadn’t been ready, maybe she wanted to put on the suit for the wrong reasons - but after everything that happened, it was time. Both her and Hank knew it, too. “I’ll show you. And we can work on the growth aspect of your suit also.” Because, right - it was awkward. To be high as a kite, and not in the stoner sort of way? Hope imagined ‘it feels weird’ would kind of be an understatement at describing the sensation. Next time Scott took the blue pill, so to speak, it wouldn’t be under a time of great duress; he’d have some time to get the hang of it first.
Clear blue eyes flitted to the hot tea that arrived for the both of them, and she looked down, focusing on pouring herself a cup using the clay pot. “Speaking of your best friend Tony - “ This would also be awkward, and she prepared herself for Scott getting upset - but not really upset; regardless, if they were going to have a fight about it she hoped it didn’t last too long and they could get to the making up portion quickly.
“I started working there at Stark Industries. Continuing my research. I have access to so much, and with that, maybe more answers about the Quantum Realm will come.”
Scott was excited to see the completed suit. It would finally be something Hope could have for herself--her mother’s namesake, her mother’s suit. That final piece to the patching puzzle her and her father were putting together for what had been a miscommunication, and he was happy for them. Even more grateful to have Hope watching his back. Fearful for those who got in her way.
“That’s so awesome, I can’t wait to see it. Hank only started mentioning brief things while we were updating his suit so I can only imagine.” And it took a lot of convincing to get Hank to help him make an upgrade. Especially after their previous conversation about the regulator.
But Scott had proved ‘fucking with the regulator’ to be a lifesaver, and another possibility into the Quantum Realm.
He could only imagine what he gave his daughter and her suit. Though his thoughts were cut short, the teacup slowly lowering in his hand at the mention of Stark. Not just in the jest they were any sort of friends ‘ha ha’ but working for him. And, he all but choked on his tea, “What? Why? That’s--he’s a asshat. The worst kind of corporate ladder, silver spooned asshat that can possibly be, I mean. Your dad said not to trust a Stark and Tony has shown in more ways than one what a tool he is. We can find another lab for your research Hope--he just wants your dad’s technology. He’ll turn it into something bad. And he’s a douche.” In case he forgot to mention all of those things.
“Scott - ” That was exactly the type of reaction Hope had expected though, so she couldn’t be too surprised. “In case you haven’t noticed? My father isn’t right one-hundred percent of the time,” she said, setting down her teacup for a moment. “But going rogue is something you both have in common, so I’m sure he’d side with you on this.”
It was true - Hank made the decision on his own to keep the Pym Particles to himself and continue going on missions even after he was ‘informed’ he was finished. Hope wasn’t going to spend time thinking about who was right and who was wrong, Howard vs. Hank, but she knew one thing. “I don’t want to continue my father’s fight,” she added, with a hint of frustrated desperation to her tone. “I want to make my own decisions about this - whatever problem he had with Tony’s father, I don’t have that same problem yet. Tony may have fucked up - “ And Scott being tossed into superhero prison didn’t help, it wasn’t like Hope blamed him for being prickly about it, “...but we all fucked up, and we’re here now, and I want to stay alive. Protect people. Keep this universe from breaking apart too.”
She picked up her tea again, but was watching Scott. “We won’t let him take the Pym Particles and use them negatively. Partners, remember? I’m not asking you to be best friends with him, or even trust him, but trust me.”
To be frank, Scott had a problem with Stark long before he’d even known Hank. He had a history with corporate level assholes using their power for the wrong reasons. It’s what put him in jail in the first place, going against them, because had he done it to anyone else? He’d have been a hero. But no. Stark could weasel his way out of anything. But little guys like Scott? They went to jail for fighting people like him.
In or out of Ant Man suits.
“Hank has a right not to trust him. They were trying to steal his research, and yeah, you have to move forward from the past but Tony’s actions in the present aren’t exactly what I’d call trustworthy either.” He huffed into his cup before taking a drink. He knew Hope would only benefit to having more great minds help her with her research.
Scott wasn’t a Stark or a Banner or a Pym, but he was more than average intellect (even if it didn’t show). Maybe what kept Hank from finding what Scott had all this time was his lack of trust in other people and trying to do everything alone.
That still didn’t change the fact that Scott would never trust Tony Stark as far as he could throw him. And from ten stories high? He’d managed to throw War Machine a good distance. “I do trust you. I don’t want him taking advantage of you needing help with your research. Guys like that? They’ve got what they think is best for the world or want in mind only. He’ll do anything to get it. He’s slimy, like a crafty, slimy snake...I still think we can find you another lab.” He muttered under his breath.
Slimy, like a crafty, slimy snake. Such a way with words he had; Hope chuckled a little. “I have experience with pulling one over on crafty, slimy snakes - I’m not going to let this one hoodwink me,” she promised, fingers creeping over and curling on Scott’s wrist - it was meant to be a reassuring touch.
Because she didn’t think that Tony Stark was all that slimy - she was good at reading people, and he gave off a ‘covering up immense sadness, burying himself in heroics’ sort of vibe, not someone who was out to steal research. Likely Tony just thought he was doing the right thing too, when it was his ideals up against Captain America’s. What it boiled down was that they were all stubborn asses (weren’t most men?).
“It’s important that I continue the research and - maybe we’ll have a breakthrough. Dr. Strange said he’s been to the Quantum Realm too,” she added. “You’re not mad at me, are you?”
Hope gave off her own vibe, like she didn’t care - but of course she did. She played the role of cool-as-a-cucumber businesswoman well, though her heart was squishy and filled with love for an ex-con who had dumbass friends and also happened to be a really good dad.
“Huh?” Was he mad at her—no, maybe that disdain was coming off in the wrong direction. Scott didn’t really get mad at people unless they were being absolute douchebags. Just like he didn’t like using violence.
It was a special case by case basis. But he couldn’t be mad at Hope at all, and the thought didn’t even cross his mind. “No, no. I just don’t like him. That’s it.” And she did have experiences with corporate assholes. Darren Cross was an elaborate one. ‘Your very existence insults me’—seriously? Get a hobby bro. “And I know you can handle yourself, it’s not you. It’s him.” That sounded really weird coming out of his mouth.
He wasn’t surprised to know Strange had been to the realm yet. Scott didn’t know what to make of him but the guy had been friendly so far. He did, however, take an interest in Hopes physical contact and her questions, raising a brow, the corner of his lip raising ever so lightly. “Why would you care if I was angry anyways?” He teased fondly, hand turning over in hers so he could smooth his fingers across her palm. Was the ‘pretty angry lady’ getting all soft on him?
“No reason,” she rolled her eyes, scoffing. Hope had an image to maintain, alright - and she probably wouldn’t be so vulnerable if they weren’t alone. But they were, so she dropped the guard a little. Their relationship wouldn’t go anywhere if she didn’t, which she had also come to realize.
And she was glad that they would go into this new universe (still odd to find you basically had fallen into a new one) together, as partners, and there weren’t any secrets between them. Or space. Much space. Not right now - because she leaned across the floor table between them and kissed him, a few times; sometimes that said more than words anyway (don’t worry, that red lipstick was also kiss-proof, there was none on the teacup or Scott’s mouth).
“Drink your tea, princess. Then you can show me your apartment since I think we’re in the same building.”
Scott chuckled at her deflection, though he probably shouldn’t be so amused to annoy her, he knew it wasn’t always the case. After spending so much time with Hope her ‘annoyance’ was just a little protection mechanism, much like anyone else, kind of like his sarcasm. Which he easily used to combat her with.
And he missed that. And totally did not expect her to lean over and kiss him. More than once. Wasn’t he the one starting things on a whim?
Not that he’d complain, about one or two kisses in he was fully conscious and returning the affection. Even if he would have been covered in red lipstick he wouldn’t have cared. No appreciate dude would, really. “We what? We are?” Again, almost had the cup to his lips.
“Did Strange do that somehow with his...powers or something?” He ended the question with a hearty drink of the nice warm tea.
“No, I just think it’s the main building for those of us who end up here and have technically come from across the country with pretty much zero contacts in New York,” she chuckled again, both hands wrapped around her teacup. Or came from another planet entirely or something - that was difficult to wrap one’s mind around. “But - we don’t have to stay very long. Maybe we can find something else.” Together, yes - that was what Hope had in mind. And she realized that cohabitation was a big step, but it wasn’t like they were new at this - they’d been through a lot by now.
She also made another sort of offering, glancing up through her lashes, “...and with a room for Cassie too? For when she visits?”
The tea was really good and calming. Scott would definitely have to get some to go for the apartment. The one he was trying to wrap his mind around. Yeah, made sense. “Right. And with the whole..goodie bag and welcome thing. Makes sense.”
Poor Doctor Strange. Scott definitely wanted to get some stable income again (it was like the never ending plague of his life) so the poor dude wouldn’t have to support him.
But he blinked in surprise at Hope’s proposal. “You mean like, get a place together?” It was kind of a big deal. Even if Scott had been more or less living with her Father / her when she stayed. A very odd cohabitation that he was willing to ignore if it meant stability. “We can do that. I just don’t know how long it’ll be until I can get stable income again. Or..when and if Cassie’s mom will let her come over here.”
It was a very big gesture from Hope, and Scott was smiling anyways. Because really, she was hiding all of this secret sweetness behind punches and a personality just as stubborn as her father. “I think it’s a great goal.”
Those punches made a great shield, thanks very much. Hope wasn’t exactly used to romance and having a boyfriend or whatever they wanted to call this - it was possible she and Scott hadn’t even been on an official date yet? Huh, something to think of.
“Me too,” she smiled, then found herself worrying her lower lip with pearly teeth a little as she considered how to phrase what she wanted to phrase. “And you know you don’t have to worry about income, Scott. I mean - if you wanted to get a place, we could, and whenever you find that income, then great.”
She was a millionaire, is what she meant - well, her father was. But they wouldn’t be hurting for money, is all. Especially since the job with Stark Industries paid well (not like she was going to bring that up, however - they’d talked about it enough).
“Uh, no. I have a Masters in Electrical Engineering. Someone has to need something, even if it’s under the table.” This could not be where the world was. He could build just about anything, or take it apart, or fix it. New tech, old tech. A friggin Ant Man suit he didn’t even conceptualize.
He was not about to just skate by on Hank and Hope’s family money like a bum.
He was not a bum. And he had to pay child support anyways, which, didn’t need to broach the subject. “I’m a lot of things but I’m not a mooch. We’re in New York now. I bet if I hit the streets tomorrow I could find something.” He poured and drank another cup of tea maybe more intently then he’d meant to. Because he couldn’t handle not even being able to hold down a job at Baskin Robbins again. “It’ll be fine. We can start looking at the same time.”
“Okay, okay,” Hope caved - she wouldn’t protest, since it was obviously important to Scott that he find legit work and quickly, rather than let Mean Pretty Lady do the supporting for the time being. All she meant was that he didn’t have to resort to something like Baskin Robbins (though he probably looked really cute in that pink uniform), but really, she got it. She understood the need and desire to support one’s own self.
Leaning across the table again, she kissed his cheek and beneath his ear, murmuring, “Don’t burn your tongue, I might need it later.” Since he did drink that tea kind of fast.
Almost spit the tea again. Scott didn’t think it was possible for Hope to miss him that much, but there he was again, wrong. And he knew all too well when you had that time to think about things and people when you didn’t have them there.
Three years in jail taught him a lot—and he should have been sticking to that mantra.
“Ahem,” Scott leaned into her proximity, putting his cup down, nestling the side of his head against hers. “Be careful, you’re going to make me and the rest of the people in this tea shop think you actually like me or something.” And since she kept making moves for affection he decided she was obviously in need for some (like seriously, how many times had she probably have a hug, ever?).
Lang picked up his cushion and got up to plop down right next to Hope, pressing their sides together and wrapping an arm around her in a half hug, his head turning to give her a kiss now, softly at her temple. “I really missed you...and Hank. I’m glad you're here. I was worried before Strange told me that I’d lost Cassie again. And maybe you guys too.”
“I missed you too. Me and the old man did,” Hope confessed, sliding her arm around Scott and soaking up the warmth his proximity provided. Hugs were pretty foreign for her - neither she or her father were much of the touchy-feely types - and while she wasn’t some innocent, pristine person she couldn’t remember the last time she was involved with someone that covered the whole gamut of things. Emotions, physical attraction, the complete package.
She caught his lips with her own, getting a bit of stubble scrape in that kiss - but she liked it, liked the burn of it. Probably would mean she’d end up with a rosy chin, but who cared? Wasn’t as if she even minded smooching so obviously in a tea shop. “I think we’ll be okay now. Kicking ass together like we’re meant to.”
Couple goals, right? Hey, it sounded pretty good to her.