1963-12-06 - Goggles On!
Summary: Simmons and Fitz make a bet. Jemma figures out Fitz is hurt. Liv offers to introduce them to Reed Richards.
Related: NA
Theme Song: None
fitz simmons liv 


The prison is well underway. With the prototype now-occupied by Bruce Banner (by choice, it would seem), and the construction getting consistently reinforced, Fitz and Simmons have been making tweaks and testing strength. The large metallic components, powered by one of the crystal's many weapons, are strewn about the room — large and cumbersome in their make up.

Sleepy is still in pieces on the table. The readings continue to be perplexing to the engineer, and require great discussion.

Not that that is on the table now.

No, instead a bet must be won.

The point of the laser, streamlined into a single narrow trajectory is focused on… an apple. "I'm telling you, it can cut without causing the whole thing to go belly up — " Fitz insists.

*

"That's quite a large risk you're willing to take," Simmons tells Fitz with a bit of a smirk. The shorter woman has her dark hair pulled back into braids, safety glasses on. As the bet and demonstrations have continued, the scientist has kept quite a close watch on her closest friend and ally. Not just due to their bet, but there is a hint of concern in her behavior.

"Just remember what is on the line, here." The biologist scoots a bit around the lab table, eye drifting toward the weapons and metal components strewn about them. A lingering glance is given to the dismantled Sleepy. "This is not just a pie we're talking about."

*

"Clearly not," Fitz replies with that same lift of his eyebrows. There's mischief behind those dark eyes as the Scot finds his way back towards the apple to make a single adjustment. "The calculations say it'll work. And, if I win," although it remains in question if Simmons actually took the bet, "you have to organize the lab for one month, regardless of whatever bits," he motions towards Sleepy absently, "are left around, yeah?"

And then as an afterthought he manages, "And if you win," the way he says it implies it's a BIG if, "then I will clean up whatever nonsense and cosmic goo you leave laying around. Except cat livers. Never leave that near my lunch again. No one wants to eat next to a cat liver."

*

"Yes, but we are working with components we have yet to truly test. While we've seen something somewhat similar back in New Zealand, the crystal is practically unknown territory, Fitz." Simmons' argument is mostly ideological at this point. The pull of knowing what secrets the crystal holds has taken most of her attention, much like Fitz. As always, they're in this together. "Our calculations could be based on anomalies rather than actual quantifiable results."

Then, there's a good natured sigh. This is a well trod argument between them. "Not the cat liver again. You have such a weak stomach. It was there for moments. It was your own choice to eat in the lab in the midst of my autopsy!" Simmons crosses her arms and looks to the apple. Almost too eagerly, she says, "Well, go on then. Let's see if we get pie or if we explode the lab."

*

ROLL: Fitz +rolls 1d100 for a result of: 54

*

"Goggles on!" Fitz says rightly as he tugs his own onto his face. A glance towards Simmons, however, serves as a reminder that she is, indeed, already wearing her goggles, prompting a, "Huh. Stole my moment there, Jemma." He smirks at her, as he trails back to the machine. His hands rub together excitedly and he turns his head towards Jemma. After a moment's eye contact, he issues her a faint nod. With a grin, he manages a single word as e flips the switch.

"Allonsy!"

The laser slices the apple in half, cooking it along the edge as the fruit splits into two.

A loud cheer emits through SHIELD's lab-basement.

Leo Fitz is a winner.

It's time to gloat. At least in spirit, if not in words.

*

Simmons gives Fitz a winning smile as she demonstrates her already worn goggles. "I've told you so many times, Fitz! Lab safety is very important! You should be wearing them at all times." Her tone is mostly teasing. As the laser snaps on, the scientist instinctively closes her eyes agains the bright light. Then, it opens again as the apple is sliced open.

The cheers of the lab-basement are heard and her arms remain crossed. Giving Fitz an amused, if annoyed half-smile at losing the bet, she finally raises her hands in defeat. "Fine fine, I will organize the lab for one month. But, you didn't say I couldn't organize them the way I want them organized," she beams. At least she has something she can feel glad about in losing the bet.

"Congratulations, Fitz," she tells him. There is no begrudging tone. They do these sorts of bets often enough that her pride is not hurt. She'll win hers soon enough. "But, I am serious. I do believe that more testing of this crystal is necessary before we start to rely on it as heavily as we are beginning to. Something like this is a deus ex machina - it can't be trusted on face value."

*

"But the calculations are telling, Jemma," Fitz objects quickly. He treads to the now cooked apple. He bends to the ground to retrieve it, and, rather scientifically, gives it an idle poke. Yes, he is checking whether it's okay to pick up. Quickly, he scoops it into his hand. With a shrug he sinks his teeth into half of the cooked apple.

When he straightens, however, he winces, reaching for the lab bench to grant him some semblance of stability as he groans and he drops the apple again. His ribs hurt. His bones hurt. Everything about his entire body aches. He forces a tight-lipped smile and continues to bend over.

*

"The Doctor might say that 'your arrogance is nearly as great as your ignorance!'" Simmons put on an old British accent for that, instead of her native New Zealand tones. That's how he knows she's not truly chastising him, but quoting her new favorite show. Her love of that new BBC show is only surpassed by her love of the America Comics she used to have shipped to her by a SHIELD penpal in the States.

The teasing is quickly ended when she notices his wince. "Fitz!" Simmons shoves the lab glasses over her forehead and moves to support him as he continues to bend over. "I knew something was wrong. Why didn't you come to me?" Gently, she attempts to shift him toward a chair."You are the most stubborn man I know."

*

"Come Jemma, I can't be the most stubborn. Just mildly…" Fitz groans, "suborn." He emits a long sigh as he shuffles to the chair. "Sleepy — " he murmurs with a roll of his eyes. "Took off for a space ship." He frowns. Blue energy emitted from one particular location on top of the Daily Bugle."

He sits in the chair and wrinkles his nose. "Just bruising. Always bruising. Only ever just bruising. Never anything worse."
"

*

"Most stubborn," Simmons reaffirms for her friend. Gently, she probes at his ribs, glancing upward at each touch to check his expression. He might try to hide it, but she can read him, she knows when he's hiding physical pain. "And you didn't call me?" There's quite a frown.

"Take your shirt off," she tells Fitz, tone shifted automatically from his chiding and teasing friend to doctor. "It's always bruising until it isn't. You have to stop getting yourself into these scrapes without me. You're the one who said you didn't want to be in the field and yet you're the one out getting Sleepy dismantled while I'm in this lab attempting to discern the signatures of this crystal."

*

"Not possible," Fitz's attempts to steel under the touch, but the faint lift of his eyebrows and tension in his expression are telling enough. "I brought Sleepy back with data. I didn't know it would be a thing until it was a thing." His eyes try to meet Simmons', "You know I wouldn't leave you behind on purpose." He shoots her a small smile.

The instruction is met with freezing. He frowns slightly and then cringes. "Really it's not…" but it doesn't seem like she's going to take no for an answer. Bashfully, his chin drops to his chest. Slowly, he tugs the shirt over his head. "I still don't want to be in the field. I'm not designed for it."

*

What is not possible is for Fitz to hide his bruised ribs from Simmons once they're in her attention. "Well, you should stop doing that: going out without me. You should know by now that you're a target. To both metal beams and now taking Sleepy along on your schemes. If I didn't know any better I would think you're attempting to be devious." Fitz's eyes are met as she stops pressing against his ribs and she gives him a reassuring smile. "I know you wouldn't. But, just think about the fact that you haven't been in the field often, Fitz. What would I do if you were badly injured?"

Once the shirt is off, she sighs and looks at the bruising already visible on his chest. "I would say so. You've been injured more in a week than I thought possible," she tells him with a concerned frown. "This is why you can't leave the lab without me, Fitz. You get injured without me to protect you."

*

"Devious isn't the word for it," Fitz cringes as Simmons looks over his ribs. "That hurts, you know." Pause. Fitz frowns, "Of course you know. I'd think they wanted you to have sympathy." He frowns slightly and shakes his head. "You'd be fine, Jemma. Out of the two of us, we both know you'd figure it out," Fitz, on the other hand, is hopeless without her.

His head turns towards the door, and he shifts to rise from the seat. "Anyways, I somehow don't think you'd be much more protection than I have for myself." He shoots her a boyish lopsided smile.

*

"Who is the they in your hypothetical?" Simmons give Fitz an annoyed raise of her eyebrow. "While I may spend most of my time in a lab, I wasn't grown in one, you know. I make my own decisions." And as he attempts to stand up, she quickly moves to push him back down. "Where do you think you're going? I have to bandage these ribs! You bruised them before, now you're lucky they're not broken. You obviously need them to be protected." Her eyes do not follow his towards to door.

There is no arguing with Jemma when she is in this mode. "And I don't believe that. You're the one who traveled to England, then to New Zealand, then to here! You're most likely more traveled than I am. And you shut your mouth, Leopold Fitz. I would protect you! Don't even pretend as if I wouldn't! Ya hard case."

*

The door to the lab slides open and, a moment later, one of the newer residents of the bullpen upstairs ducks inside. Liv kind of stands out — she's six feet tall, broad shouldered and managing to wear a men's suit without it looking wrong, with platinum blonde hair pulled back in a braid.

And right now, she has a box of donuts in hand.

"Fitz? I thought you might have forgotten to eat again, so — oh." Liv blinks once when she spots the pair and immediately cracks a smile. The fact that he hasn't got a shirt on doesn't even seem to register on her. "You must be Doctor Simmons."

*

A sharp whistle emits from Fitz's lips. "They. Those people that give people medical licenses. That they. They as in them. Those people. Yeah?" of course, the mood changes as he's forcibly pressed back into his seat. He frowns t and his eyes drift closed. "This isn't like I'm going to be out and about scaling buildings, Jemma. I'm just in the lab," which he was supposed to be earlier. Probably telling in some way.

He cracks a smile at Simmons' defense of her own skills, but doesn't have time to remark on it when Liv walks into the room. He manages a flicker of a smile at the Asgardian and motions towards his partner in crime, "Ah! Jemma, this is Liv Sigrunsdottir. She's a field agent. A real one. She was there when Sleepy went to collect data. And gained a mind of its own."

*

"Those that gave me my medical license isn't in this lab right at the moment, Fitz," Simmons tells Fitz firmly. "You also just said that you didn't mean to put yourself in danger, so I must just assume that you stepping out the door will put you at least at a 40 percent chance of bruising your ribs, as that is the data I have observed since we've arrived here. It hasn't even been a week!"

Liv's entrance is missed, for the post part as Simmons now has gauze, lotion and adhesive and is intent on wrapping Fitz's bruised chest. It's the question from Liv and then the introduction of Fitz that startles Simmons out of her medical focus. She blinks a few times, wrap around Fitz paused for a few minutes as she studies Liv. While she has not met the woman before, she starts to make judgements merely based on height, standing and Fitz's introduction.

"I—yes. I am. Can I help you?" Then, she looks to Fitz for a guidepost of how to proceed. She hasn't actually met any Field Agents. Hearing that she was there when Fitz was injured makes her raise an eyebrow. "Oh! I see. Sleepy gained a mind of his own? That's not possible. Also, perhaps she could shed some light about your most recent injury." She turns to to Liv. "He has been most tight lipped about it."

*

"Injury?" Liv echoes, and she levels a worried look on poor, poor Fitz. "I didn't realize he'd been hurt… Fitz! Did this happen the other night?" she asks with a frown, finding a safe spot to abandon the box of donuts for later, in favor of making her way over to per worriedly at the engineer.

"I don't know if Sleepy gained a mind of her own or not, but she was polite enough to knock on the door of the invisible timeship," Liv says, both assigning a gender to the drone and speaking about an invisible timeship in a tone so casual that she might as well be discussing the weather. "Which… I mean, to be fair. They did open the door."

She shrugs helplessly and runs a hand back over her hair, glancing to Simmons with an odd expression. "It has been a… very strange week."

*

Fitz snap-points at Liv. "See!? Sleepy gained a mind of its own! It even knocked!!! Something is wrong with that piece of tech, Jemma. We need to figure out the core of it. That is, after we've properly digested the data."

He motions towards Liv, "As I told the Director the other day, the data suggests — through carbon dating — that the energy is from earth. Or some version of earth. Essentially the entire thing has proven Reed Richards' theory of the multiverse!! Which should blow everyone's minds like" he makes an exploding motion from his brain, "Right!?"

The notion of being hurt, however, seems to be lost as he pushes up from his spot and treads to where Sleepy is still in pieces. "Question is whether the vessel is from a parallel world OR or or a future one!"

*

"Yes! He was injured," Simmons does not care for Fitz machismo, should he attempt to pretend as if he was not injured. Luckily, he seems completely unfased. But, she gives Liv a bit of a look at her care over Fitz as well as the indecipherable look she receives from the woman. It's hard to tell what that means. "A—strange week? How else? I have mostly dealing with the crystal and staying in."

As Fitz jumps up and moves to Sleepy, Simmons follows closely. It's not just her worry, but also the fact that she has been wrapping his chest and is still attached to him through bandages. "Gently, Fitz!" she warns. "You've been pretend to not be injured for too long. You must be careful with yourself." However, then, as he gets excited about the idea of the multiverse, her own wheels start to spin. "A version of earth. Well, that would certainly account for the certain irregularities we are seeing in the outputs of the crystal. Or, perhaps, even, it is that in other multiverses, there are different outputs of carbons." It's exciting, but she attempts to contain herself.

"However, we must not get carried away! We must continue testing! Carbon dating can be affected by the nuclear testing during the war! Though, the very posits of this parallel world are incredibly fascinating and well worth studying."

*

It is really hard not to smile when Fitz starts getting so excited about multiverse theory, so Liv doesn't bother trying, even if she does give Simmons a quick look of apology for it. She's not trying to encourage him to be careless with himself, honest. "It may have happened when he — we — were chasing Sleepy," she says thoughtfully. "The ship kept emitting some kind of a… wave. It had some kick to it." And she had found Fitz looking like he'd gotten the wrong end of a brick wall.

Loosely folding her arms, Liv wanders towards the workbench, keeping half an eye on the leash-of-bandage. Does she need to hold Fitz still for Simmons to finish up? She could probably hold Fitz still.

"If you wanted to consult with Doctor Richards, I could introduce you?" Liv offers, glancing between the pair with a questioning arch of her eyebrows. "Would that help?"

*

Even as Simmons chides him, Fitz works at pulling together some component parts from the taken apart bot. "I think theoretically we need to hone in here! Just consider the amazing possibility of a multiverse! You read that paper, Jemma! I know you did — " evidently he won't be deterred or standing still. While normally bashful while so scantily clothed, Fitz's excitement will not be contained.

"Aaaa! I can go get the latest paper, I have it in a file in the — " his face scrunches together thoughtfully, "That place! Yes! Just…" he lifts a finger and then nods at Liv. "Yes! Please please please! I could die if I met Doctor Richards, but I need to pick his brain about this — Jemma imagine what we could ask! Think of what kinds of theories he must have cooking in that lab! Someday I will tour that lab — " he keeps talking but thanks to the distance he's moving, it's hard to keep up (even with a bandage leash) and the bandage leash is coming undone as he moves. He doesn't make a great patient.

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