1963-10-21 - Meeting the Boss: Pt 1
Summary: Carol introduces herself to Peggy, and explains the demons that have been haunting her in the past.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
carol peggy 


Monday. Generally the day most new reports start, Peggy is checking everyone in, receiving the weekend reports, and managing the beginning of the week chaos in a multi-national spy organization. So, of course, she's in the office until entirely too late. It's well after regular working hours, the light still shining through the window in her door which faces the main bull pen that now only carries a skeleton crew of workers.

Peggy herself has gotten a *touch* more comfortable — her suit jacket long off and even her high heels hidden beneath her desk, leaving her in bare stockinged feet. She's undone the top button of her slacks which really just don't comfortably fit any more, but denial means she's not bothered buying new pants again. She's bent over the last stack of reports for the day, a cup of luke warm tea above her hand. The radio behind her crackles out some low jazz.

*

Carol never was the type to wear heels - except when the job demanded it. Lucky for her, now was not one of those times. She hoped. Murmuring a bit to herself as she spends a moment in the hallway - Carol makes certain that her hair - combed just so - was just right, and that everything on her uniform was correct.

Lifting her chin a bit, she casts a wink. "Carol - you still got a little bit of superspy left in you, I think," she says. A handful of moments more, and she draws her portfolio up to her front, clutching her fingers around it.

A few moments later:

A soft knock comes from the door, and Carol takes a couple of steps inside. "Director?" she asks, her tone lifting in quiet question. "Do you have a moment?"

*

The SHIELD Agent handbook definitely says nothing about heels. The dress code for men and women is quite the same — business suits, period, dot. Ties are recommended with collared shirts and anything leather should be polished at least once a week. But any sexism that is so often seen in dress codes has, somehow, been completely removed from this place. Of course, that might have something to do with the fact that the Director is a woman. Even if she still wears heels out of ancient habit.

The knock on her door draws slightly surprised dark eyes from the papers in front of her — Peggy had thought everyone had gone home. "Yes, yes, of course, come in." Peggy's British toned voice clips out gently, no annoyance in her tone, just that slight surprise and curiosity as to whom it might be as it's not a voice she knows all that well. Peggy carefully folds shut the report she was working on, standing from behind her desk, totally having forgotten about that missing top button.

*

Well, certainly. Pride was something that Carol took in just about everything she did - which was why her downfall in NASA was so heartbreaking for her. Even it was a pair of comfortable, non-heeled leather boots that were shined to a polish. Just like her smile. "Agent Danvers, ma'am," Carol helpfully supplies.

Bringing up her hand, she gives the portfolio she carries a little flick. She still had the black eye - although covered with makeup a bit - even if her other wounds - ones that some had privately said would take her out of commission for good - seemed a distant memory. At least, her left arm was moving alright now. "I'd like to thank you again for this opprotunity - but you might remember the reason that I drew SHIELD's attention in the first place?"

Carol draws her portfolio up, setting it on the desktop. A picture - black and white - of a leering, long-haired man in a metal half-mask might fall out. "The Winter Soldier - he's still out there," she says. A beat, though - and she seems to catch herself from the fierce look that was falling into her features. "But I should ask - how are you doing, director?"

*

The moment Carol comes in the room, Peggy's eyes go from curiosity to recognition and a warm smile. Though they'd not yet had the chance to formally meet — Carol wasn't someone Peggy felt she needed to vet, she trusted the woman's credentials, despite the mess of her file — Peggy sure as hell knew exactly who she was looking upon. "I remember you, Agent Carol Danvers. Hell, I owe you an apology for not coming to meet you sooner. There simply aren't enough hours in a week." Peggy admits with a half sigh, not totally joking. She then reaches one hand across the table to the tall, elegant blond.

"Director Carter. But, truly… this time of the night? feel free to call me Peggy." Titles were for the field, in Peggy's mind. Some of the military had left her after all these years. She then motions to the chair across from her and accepts the portfolio, opening it on top of the file she was reading. An arched brow comes, studying the photo. It was a case she hadn't had much time to focus on. "…Doing? Me? Fine, fine… Why wouldn't I be?" There is almost just the edge of paranoia in Peggy's voice. Why was the woman asking that question? What did she know? "…and what's the latest you have on this Winter Soldier?"

*

Carol's handshake was firm. "You're a busy woman, director," says Carol, "I can't imagine it's easy keeping us all marching in the same direction," she says, drawing her hand to the back of a chair. Pulling the chair away from the desk - the little paranoid cant to Peggy's voice causes her head to tilt a bit to the side - pursing her lips a touch. But she carries on - folding one leg over the other in spite of her slacks.

Too many days in heels.

"Because you work eight days a week, ma'am," says Carol - a little half smile at the joke of sorts. "Although I have to say - it's an honor. I've heard of your record, and I can't think of anyone better to be leading SHIELD, particularly in this time - particularly now," she says, straightening her neck and brushing a lock of her hair over her ear.

Her voice was growing serious again. "As you can see in that portfolio - I last encountered the Winter Soldier during my time in the service - but I've recently seen him again. He was hoping to attract demons from the Hellmouth into the general population. I believe…" she pauses again. "He's working - either with the Russians, or as a disgruntled third party - to try to strike at America," she says, her jaw tightening. "And… seeing as I've been out of commission a while, I wonder if SHIELD might know anything more about him."

*

The commentary about working 8 days a week makes Peggy smirk a bit, but she gives a small shake of her head, "It is fine, and the job. It's not quite so bad as people make it out to be." Even if it's well past five on a Monday and she is here. That seems all that Peggy is content to say on the matter, far more interested in getting down to business. She flips through what little documentation Carol has brought her about the infamous assassin, a slightly deeper frown across her red velvet lips. Exhausted or not, the lipstick is always still in place.

"In truth, you might have as much information as us right now. While we have a few vague reports of assassinations that might be contributed to him from around the globe, he's very much a ghost. And a convenient fall guy for places that might be trying to cover up true motivations. Building up a legend means one's name is easily used as some sort of bogeyman." Peggy states with a slight grimace. Still, she's now staring at the black and white photo in front of her. "I was unware of reported sightings in the US. Much less near the Hellmouth. Can you give me a detailed summary of what you saw?"

*

"It was Brooklyn," says Carol. A beat further, her eyes narrowing. Her own makeup was at a minimum, natural tones coloring her lips - beyond the blended foundation around her eye, at the least. She purses her lips. "And I know it was him - he was here," she says, setting her arms easily upon the rests of her chair.

"He had caused… well…" Carol purses her lips. "I'm /certain/ he was the source of an explosion - that let some of the demons out - this was in the middle of their little rumpus, after all - and I saw him moving from rooftop to rooftop. I tried to get in front of him, and we ended up having an encounter in the middle of an office building…"

Carol purses her lips. "Where he put me in the hospital after a brief altercation. I… admit my memory is a little fuzzy, but I think I…" she narrows her eyes. "Shot him, or wounded him, somehow," she says. A beat. "And that hospital is where your recruiter found me," she says. "But… maybe he's moved on by now," she says. "But I don't think that's so. I /feel/ he's still in the city. I don't know what he's doing here - but whatever it is…" she says, shaking her head. "But I admit, I only have hunches at this point."

*

The woman is silent for several heartbeats longer, fully reading Carol's file before she asks more questions. While time is always of the essence, Peggy also recognizes that rushing through things often costs more time in the future. She shouldn't waste is asking questions that are answered here. So, she reads the write up and then folds it shut, handing the portfolio back in Carol's direction, her expression somberly thoughtful as she studies the blonde just as much as she did the file.

"…Agent Danvers. I had you recruited for… many reasons. Not just your previous service record, but your willingness to serve… Your wisdom about certain things, and your willingness to take risks in the field. You have good senses about you. Hunches, while sometimes false, I find are most often some of the most valuable things in a good agent. Now… I trust your hunch, but my question is — Do you think this Winter Soldier is of enough threat to the city and the world right now that we should be sending agents after him, or are there greater things that we should be putting our resources to? I'd be willing to assign you to the case, but only if you legitmately can tell me you think he's one of the largest threats in this city right now."

*

Carol pauses a few moments.

And maybe it was obvious, but she purses her lips then - the Winter Soldier was personal to her. In fact - she draws her eyes away and to one side, narrowing her eyes. A breath in, and a breath out… and her eyes return towards Peggy proper - something akin to steel hiding away in them, her hands curling in her lap before… they relax.

"No ma'am. I think he is a threat, and he should be… considered if a SHIELD agent should happen upon him. But there's a portal into hell in Central Park. And I'm hearing some crazy stories about vampires - old wars with Russia should stay just that. Cold, if not frozen."

*

-To Be Continued

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