Agents of Shield: At the Heart (chapter 2)

Ward lowered Cava down onto a stretcher in the middle of Fitz and SImmons’ lab. The two scientists immediately began examining the unconscious girl, while Coulson, May, Skye, and Ward stood in the background, observing their colleagues at work.

“So, does anyone understand what happened back there? I mean. . .she was kicking Ward’s ass.” Skye said, looking up at Ward, who merely rolled his eyes at the sassy young woman with her hand on her hip.

“She absorbed the electrical energy from the heart of the old man that collapsed back there.” Simmons began, moving a tablet above Cava’s chest and an x-ray image popped up.

“It sped up her heart rate and reflexes. . .” Fitz added.

“But no human’s heart can sustain that level of energy for long.”

“So when she ran out of the extra electrical energy, her heart ran completely stopped beating-”

“But she woke back up.” Skye interjected, flipping her long brown hair over her shoulder. “How did it restart?”

“Your heart,” Simmons began to explain, turning from her patient to face Skye and the others, all of whom were listening intently, “generates an electrical impulse to contract itself on its own, it doesn’t depend on the brain to send an impulse to it, telling it to contract. But from what we’ve gathered. . .” She paused a moment to pull up a series of photos on the tablet, then walked over and held the screen up before the group.

“Vena Cava’s heart can’t create an impulse to start itself.” Fitz joined his friend. He then gestured to an image of Cava’s heart on the table. “You see this little black. . .smudge on top of it here? By the aorta?”

May nodded. “And?”

“That’s an electrical device that can actually take electrical energy from other people’s hearts and transfer it to her own via radio signals.” Simmons said, containing the excitement she held at this incredible discovery of new techonology. “When she touches someone’s skin, it can absorb more.”

“But she was superhuman-even running on a high, she couldn’t have been that strong.” May mentioned.

“Yeah, she put up a fight against Ward even.” Skye raised an eyebrow at the said agent.

“I will admit it was hard to get a hold on her, yes.” Ward said evenly, containing the frustration rising up in him at Skye’s cocky attitude. He’d like to see her try and fight Cava.

“The implant supposedly activates to its full absorbtion potential when it senses a raise in the adrenaline percentage in the blood.” Fitz replied, “We aren’t sure how yet, but it reduces the amount of lactase – waste products -” He explained at Skye’s quizzical look, “In the muscles and boosts her strength by shutting down blood flow to unneeded organs and systems-the digestive system, the skin, etc.”

“Is there a way to remove it?” Phil asked, curious whether they would actually need to remove the girl’s implant.

Simmons’s face fell. “Not without killing her at the moment, no. It’s right inside the wall of the aorta-surgery would kill her.”

Suddenly a moan issued from behind them; May and Ward instantly went to the table side. Cava was blinking her eyes slowly, looking blearily up at the two agents that had subdued her. Still bleary from the drug, she brought a heavy hand up and rubbed her eyes, turning on her side. “Where am I?” She asked quietly.

Coulson walked over, gesturing for Skye to follow. “You’re in the custody of S.H.I.E.L.D. You’re safe.”

Cava’s eyes widened and she tried to stand up. “Didju. . .arrest me?” She mumbled, having a hard time getting her mouth to work.

May pushed her back down onto the table. “Take it easy. Your body has taken a lot of strain.”

“But I gotta go. . .” Cava, again, tried to sit up.

When Ward moved to push her back down onto the table, Coulson held a hand up. “Let her.” He watched as Cava swung her legs over the table and stood on the ground, facing them.

“Where am I?” She repeated her before question, looking around the lab.

Coulson forced a smile. “C’mon.” He wrapped an arm around her shoulders. “Let me show you around.”

~~##~~

Coulson sat down across from Cava, who was expecting a long talk about how she had been sentenced to life in prison. The clean white couch that they sat upon was comfortable, curved so that since the two sat on oppposite ends, they could face each other.

Coulson slid a cup across the glass table top towards Cava.

“Here. Have a coaster.” He stated, sliding a coaster across to her as well. “Do you know why you’re here?” He asked, as she picked up the glass, tentatively sniffed its contents, and took a sip. Apple juice.

“No. . .” She answered quietly, setting her glass down on the coaster before her.

“You have a strange. . .power.” Coulson chose his words carefully. “We can help you control it.”

Cava looked down at her feet, memories of attacking innocent stand-byers, compleretly out of her own control with the power that she stole from others. . .She hated herself for it. All she didn was victimize people with her strength.

“You’re going to have to give something in return,” Coulson continued.

“What?”

Phil took a breath. “My team extraced you from Seattle; this is our jet. Will you work with us?”

Cava hesitated, so Coulson went on. “In return for your service here, you’lll get medical help, learn about your powers, get training, and protection from anyone who would want to use you.”

“Use me?”

“Multiple organizations have shown a great – and dangerous – interest in the technology implanted in your heart. They’d stop at nothing to kidnap and experiment on you.”

With a deep breath, Cava nodded. “Okay. Count me in!”

~~##~~

“Show me your fighting stance,” Ward ordered, standing before Cava and Skye in the training room.

Cava bent her knees, raising her fisted hands before her face, with her elbows out.

Skye assumed a similar position, but had to check her stature and posture while Cava melted into the position naturally. “How can you do that so well?” Skye raised a quirky eyebrow at the younger girl beside her.

“Okay,” Ward interrupted, assuming the same position as the two women before him, but with his hands open and palms flat, facing towards them. “Hit me with all you’ve got. Skye, you go first.”

Cava watched as Skye pummeled Ward’s hands until he signaled for her to stop by straightening his posture. She wore a superior smile and looked proud of herself as she brushed a strand of brown hair out of her face.

Ward moved in front of Cava, putting his hands in front of his body again. “Okay, Cava, your turn. Hit me as hard as you can.”

“I can’t.” The teen argued.

“Why not?” Skye and Ward asked at the same time.

“Because. . .” She began. Ward’s and Skye’s expressions pried into her. “Because if I do, I’ll kill you both.”

Ward nodded. “Well. . .” He hesitated a moment. “Just. . .hit me as hard as you can without using your powers.”

Cava nodded. “If my adrenaline gets up, I’ll lose control. You have to knock me out before I spend all my energy or my heart will stop. Okay?”

“Okay.” Ward stated.

“Please,” Cava pleaded. “Don’t let me hurt anyone.”

Ward looked into her eyes to add weight to his words. “Don’t worry. I won’t. Now, hit me!” Cava drew her fist back, slamming it into Ward’s palm so hard that he dropped his arm and rubbed his wrist.

“Damn.” He muttered, “And that’s without your powers?”

 

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