1963-10-06 - What Comes After Avengers
Summary: Avengers Disbanded. What's Next?
Related: None
Theme Song: "Dare To Be Stupid" by "Weird Al" Yankovic - https://youtu.be/SMhwddNQSWQ
wasp howard 

It's late evening, the sky's are starting to darken a clear night over the city. Headlights fill the roads as cars travel little more then blurs between the gridlock. Slotted between the gargantuan skyscrapers, tall tenement buildings and shopping complexes, one structure stands out much as it ever has, the Stark Mansion. A long structure so big that it takes up an entire city block.

The four story mansion holds a finely inlaid brickwork and molding, designed in the height of Art Deco. That style ebbs and flows from every facet of the monster of a building. A network of hundreds of rooms, and hallways winding throughout the inside, a large well cared for garden surrounding the property with a large iron fence around.

A carved out stone pathway leads up to the front steps of this elegant building a large fountain placed on the front lawn the statue in the center covered over with scaffolding as it's currently still under repairs. Trees, and vibrant flowers line the interior of the fence, hand carved iconic imagery is etched into seemingly every surface. At the front door stands a panel with a buzzer on the side a box like object hooked up to the side of the building beside it. Below the awning that covers the stairs is a highly advanced looking security camera, watching vigil over the entire front lawn.

Howard had sent the letter himself an invitation to his private mansion for a bit of a discussion. He'd made sure to use that telltale paper and envelope that he did so often when attempting to woo a woman, but the contents were of a more serious nature. The two needed to talk, and what better guise for their discussion then one the tabloids would go mad over.


Janet was in turmoil after the President's announcement of the Avengers being dismantled, that team has been a stabilizing force in her life. As crazy as it sounds, she felt like she was continuously avenging her father's death, that it was not all for nought. That she was doing good with the abilities she had gained. That her life wasn't simply wasted away in frivolous things, despite her love of fashion, she never felt as good as she did when out and about as an Avenger. To that end, Howard's invitation for a serious discussion was quite alluring for her.

Janet had her chauffeur bring her over to Howard's Mansion, arriving in luxurious manner as can be expected. She dressed fittingly, a fashionable red dress with an a-line skirt, the hemline daringly shorter then her knees, though a very classic red pill box hat gives the sensible semblance of being all proper. She certainly was gifted when it came to fashion. Proper white gloves simply sealed the look, as she carried her purse with her while making her way to the front door and ringing the bell.


There's a pause for a few moments the sounds of babbling water running through the pristine garden, bubbling of the rooftop pool. In the far background the hmm of the lights shining out in the early evening darkness. The cars roll by slowly but surely as that camera zooms in slightly to get a look at her. Beside the door the box begins to open, and on the other side is a black and white television set.

On the screen is a man dressed in a hand crafted Dormeuil suit made from some of the finest fabrics. His hair is slicked down and he looks every part the playboy he was renowned to be before his reported death. "Ah, Janet" His voice rings out with a smile, as he looks towards the camera. "Have to say you look just as lovely as I imagined." A light wink and an award winning smile.

The door opens up and Howard is standing tall with that pin striped suit of his. He takes a few steps out with his perfectly polished shoes dressed the part for a multi million dollar night out on the town. "Sorry to keep you waiting."


Janet laughs amicably at the flattering words she gets in introduction, "you're very kind, but you do know I'm in the fashion business, I can't be caught looking anything less than fabulous!" With the door opening up, she turns to step inside, extending her hand towards Howard as he steps towards her, "oh, it's perfectly fine, so long as it means the champagne is already poured and waiting," she adds a playful wink, before heading inside, "I must say you have a very impressive home, even with the Van Dyne Mansion in mind. You've good taste, Howard."


Howard lets out a bit of a laugh, before politely kissing her hand, and leading her into the mansion. Once the door is closed behind Howard immediately takes the moment to just relax a bit and take off that needlessly expensive jacket, "Well, what can I say? I made it myself." He lets out a bit of a laugh before fiddling with the small control panel beside the door. There's a soft noise as the screen outside the door closes back up after shutting off.

For as ritzy and glamorous as the mansion might be it looks almost completely unlived in. The tables have been left set for who knows how long, the entire place feels like it's been set up to be shown for sale. A quiet thunk thunk thunk sounds in the background as a small black box continually slams into a wall, with a duster sticking out from the top of it.

Things here are quiet without a sign of a butler in sight. Howard drops the playboy facade somewhat as he's finally able to be back inside of his fortress. "That should keep them talking for a while, and the agents out of our hair." Said with a voice that's calm and completely in control, a bit more business then one might expect from the legends about him, and his 'sexcapades'. The womanizing playboy a lot more serious. "Don't worry about being overheard in here. I've got the whole place sound proofed, and blockers in place to take care of the occasional bug." He adjusts the cuffs of his suit-shirt, like a dial changing the general lighting of the room.


"I have no doubts about that, Mr. Stark," Janet says with a knowing grin, she assumes Howard was entirely self made like her father, she knew of his family of course. But then again, she wasn't really well read on anything that wasn't primarily fashion related.

"Oh…they'll definitely do, what do you think will be the tagline of choice? How about Janet Van Dyne Looking To Burn Through Stark's Money?" She shakes her head with distaste, "whatever it is, it'll be 'scandalous'," she says with mock shock, "ugh, I think I'll skip the next issues of the papers altogether. There is something to drink while we discuss things, right?" Janet asks just to be sure. Reputations aside, she does enjoy a good drink.

When he mentions how the place is sound proof and blocked against potential bugs, Janet's eyes light up and she asks, "think I could persuade to pass by my Mansion, see if you can give me something like that? I would pay however much, you should get a noble for that alone, Mr. Stark!"


Digging round his suitshirt pocket Howard pulls out a lucky strikes cigarette. The refreshing way to enjoy your day, now with new filtering technology to make that classic lucky strikes taste you love go even further for your money. The cigarette stays in his hand for just a moment as it's lit by the bright white flame of a strange looking cigarette lighter. A quick placement in the corner of his mouth so that he can take a good drag of it. "I'm more a man after 'Stark Crossed lovers' myself, but I'm pretty sure they wouldn't go for it."

Walking over to the small box he picks it up, wheels still spin as he fiddles around with the controls on its underside, before setting it back down to go to work dusting the place. It's a very advanced piece of technology but it's certainly lacking in a lot of ways. As he comes back up to a stand he lets the smoke roll out from his mouth.

"Wouldn't exactly be much of a host if I didn't have something around to drink." A light smile crosses his face. "Normally I'd have Jarvis come down and bring us a few drinks, but I haven't seen him in years." As he makes his way over to one of many, many liqueur cabinets scattered throughout the mansion. There's a pause as he runs his finger along the labels. Under his breath he lets out a bit of a chuckle.

"Why get more? Already have one from work on Atomic energy and the bomb." He picks up a bottle from the large selection just within this one cabinet, and sets it down on the table. "Only so many awards a man can get before they lose meaning Janet," A light pause for a few puffs. "Besides you can thank Michael Faraday, for most the ground work on the blocker."

Two glasses are sat down beside the bottle, and after a quick pop of the cap are poured full of a deep almost amber brown liquid, on the rocks. "Couldn't ask you to pay too much for it, especially when I'm already asking you to join a team." Offered with a smile as he picks up his own glass, offering the other towards Janet.


"I think Stark Crossed lovers might have worked with your son, no offense, Howard, but the tabloids are pretty strict about their age requirements for certain levels of salaciousness, as they like to put it," Janet grins, making light of the whole matter, and making sure Howard is aware of it. Sure, she wouldn't expect a man of his stature to take such a comment personally, but one never knows. "It's a good one though, I'll give you that!"

"I expected you'd be well stocked. So…what happened to Jarvis?" She asks curiously, not that she knew the guy, but she knows how much of a pain it is to lose a beloved butler.

"Oh, I should have known, a humble man such as yourself, you'd settle for one, no doubt!" Janet does look like she honestly believe every word in that last thing she said was a lie. "I'm sure Faraday is someone special I ought to know, but I'm afraid, if there's one thing the tabloids did get right about me, is that school was never a fascinating place for me." Taking her own glass in hand, Janet thinks a moment, and suggests, "have you considered letting them have it? Call the team the People's Avengers? Or you don't want to stick that much up their rear ends?"


At the Jarvis comment Howard is silent for some time taking a deep sip from his glass, passing between the cigarette and the glass while focusing on his own. Eventually he speaks again, after a long stance of silence. "Janet, when people look at me, they see a genius, the father of the atom bomb, and so many inventions." He pauses swirling round the ice in his glass. "Truth is I'm just a man," He kicks back the glasses contents, leaning back against the mahogany table.

"I'm no Norse god, or genetically engineered super soldier." Spoken as he lets the cigarette burn down slightly in his hand, a quick pour to refill his glass. The ice shakes around clanking the side of his glass. "Hell I'm not even Fury or Director Carter." He dusts off a bit of the ash from the tip of his cigarette into the old cracked SSR ashtray. "But I'll tell you what I am" He brings that cigarette back up to his mouth taking a deep puff.

"I'm stupid." A slight smirk crosses his face. "I'm too stupid to know when I've been beat, to know when I'm too old for all this." He lets smoke role out the corners of his mouth. "And trust me, stupid is a very powerful thing. It means I don't give up after a few thousand prototypes, or being removed from the directors chair." He stands up tall.

"It means even when I'm down and out for the count I just keep standing back up." He holds out his hand. "Means I'm dumb enough to think we can do this without the white-house, without SHIELD, without the public support, and without Kennedy" He holds out a hand. "It means I'm brave enough to give this whole thing another shot, to make the Ultimate team."


"Oh…?" Janet intones playfully, no doubt she's the sort who likes to have fun, as she listens to Howard's flattering assumptions of himself, which honestly, aren't all that far from the truth, depending on who you ask, before she offers, "you sure they don't see playboy millionaire who gets every woman he ever pleases, and seem even when he doesn't?"

Janet was honestly primed for more bravado, when Howard suddenly says he's stupid, which catches her in a feat of laughter, as she readily admits, "so am I! What do you think I did when the Avengers encountered block head MODOK? Zapped him. In. The. Face." She motions with her fingers as if they were a gun, "pew, pew, pew, just like that!"

So moved by his "My name is Howard Stark, and I am stupid," line of motivational, Janet actually salutes him, despite never having served in any military whatsoever. "Howard, I would be honored to serve with a stupid guy like you, on a stupid team, full of stupid heroes, who will give a big up yours to all the politicians and paper pushers, and change the world for the better. We can do it!"


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