March 14, 2018 0:47 GMT+9
<Hope> Hope groaned as she started to come to again, the pain in her abdomen worse than before. She opened her eyes, searching for that cup of water they had from earlier.
<David> David stopped his head banging when he heard her, glancing up. "Hey... what is it?"
<Shinobi> He awoke with a jerk, and shit he was stiff. With a groan of his own, he started to sit up, rubbing her back lightly. "You okay?"
<Hope> "Just... thirsty." Spotting the cup, she reached for it, wincing and stopping when she reached as far as she could move.
<Shinobi> "I'll get it." He reached over her and snagged the cup.
<Hope> "Thank you," she took the cup with a shaky hand, sipping on it carefully.
<Shinobi> "Hope..." He bit the undamaged corner of his lip. "I should try to wrap up your ribs or something. I can use my shirt."
<Viper> Across the facility, alarms sounded as Hydra troops stormed every entrance (and some areas that weren't technically entrances).
<Hope> She started to say something to him, but whined at the alarms instead, covering her ear not pressed against him with her hand.
<David> "Do we dare pray for a fire?"
<Viper> Hydra and Oyama lackeys clashed in hallways, the sounds of gunfire echoing around the facility with the shouts of those hit.
<Shinobi> "Let's hope it's my father... or the US army or something." He had Hope half in his lap still and he started to get up, then paused. "Or both?" That was definite weapons fire.
<Hope> Nervously, Hope sipped the water again. "I hope it's my dad... both my dads." She kept her hand over her ear, cringing at the gunfire.
<David> Secretly, David hoped it was Viper. "Let's hope," he confirmed.
<Shinobi> "Let's get you closer to David, okay?" He gathered her up carefully and stood, every muscle protesting, to stagger the few steps across the cell.
<Hope> Whimpering, she held onto him as they moved.
<David> David moved as far as he could to them to help Shinobi.
<Shinobi> The door crashed open at the end of the hall and he jumped, holding Hope more tightly.
<Hope> Hope shouted in surprise, turning to look in that direction as she dropped the cup of water to the floor.
<Deathstrike> Shouting orders to his men, Yurei stormed down the hall, drawing his sword and impatiently shoving a guard forward to unlock the door.
<Shinobi> "Shit..." Indecisive, he exchanged a glance with David. "Baby, can you stand? You have to try. Stay with David." He carefully set her on her feet.
<David> David got a hold of her, holding at her waist to help her stay upright.
<Hope> "Obi?!" She grabbed at him, terrified of what he was about to do. He couldn't leave her!
<Shinobi> She caught his arm and he worked to pry her fingers away, but had to take a split second to squeeze her hand and kiss it. I love you. He let go and limped to the door.
<Oyama> He knew the uniforms on the troops invading his grandson's facility. He knew them! Why would Viper insert herself in this! Behind him, his personal bodyguard fell and he huffed in annoyance, ducking out of the line of fire and moving quickly down the hall toward the prisoners.
<Hope> "No!" Hope screamed after him, trying to reach him again. "Obi!"
<David> David tightened his grip on her, keeping her with him. "Calm down!"
<Shinobi> He spotted the old man as well and swore, shifting his weight. Now, his aches and pains were forgotten.
<Deathstrike> The guard was taking forever, and he smiled at the clone behind his mask. Depressing the his concealed button, he vanished, reappearing inside the cage and slashing at the bodyguard. He ripped the Stark girl from his grasp and vanished again.
<David> Blood ran down his arm, causing David to swear loudly in multiple languages.
<Hope> As they reappeared on the other side of the cage, Hope felt immediately sick. She couldn't stop the little lunch they had been given from coming up, right on that bastard's shoes.
<Oyama> He picked up his pace. Yusei was always too ambitious, always went too far... and his infatuation with that Stark...
<Shinobi> "You fucker!" The cell door clanged open and he grabbed it, slamming it into the guard and knocking the man off his feet.
<Shinobi> Now the guard was in the way, blocking his way, and before he could close the gate to get around him, the old man would be upon him. So, instead, he spun to face Kenji Oyama.
<Hope> Still nauseous, but more alert, Hope became aware of who was holding her. She started struggling, though eve slight movements hurt tremendously. "Obi!"
<David> "Hell yeah! Kick his ass!"
<Oyama> He hadn't expected this, and before he could back away Oyama found himself seized and flung inside that filthy cage. He kept his feet and turned, bringing his cane up to strike the clone.
<David> David was faster. He brought his arms up, bringing them down and back quickly around Oyama's neck. "How do you like that, fucker?!"
<Viper> There was a crackle of energy as another teleport occurred, shots being fired from within that group at approaching lackeys even before materialisation had fully completed.
<Shaw> They were in some sort of lab, which shouldn't have surprised him. Sebastian leveled his borrowed gun on the first man he saw, and recognized the mask. This was Oyama's work. He fired. "Where are they?"
<Jessica> Jess hated teleporting. With a passion. She shook herself then focused on her empathy, picking out the different levels in the sea of emotions of combat. She took Sebastian's hand and gave it a tug.
<Shinobi> He leaped back from the wild cane whack, but was unable to close in with the old man's wild flailing.
<Oyama> "You fool!" After striking one good blow on the clone, he grabbed the handle of his cane and gave it a twist, drawing his concealed blade.
<Shinobi> It was all the opportunity he needed. Shinobi caught the end of the old man's cane and shoved, jamming it backward and smirking in satisfaction when the old man's nose smashed in a shower of blood.
<David> David tightened his grip on the man's neck, choking him. "I believe we promised you that you'd all bleed.”
<Hope> Hope was somewhat shocked by this, but the hands still on her regained her focus. "Obi!" She struggled again, wincing at her ribs. She needed morphine for this shit!
<Viper> Following Jessica and Sebastian, Viper kept the lackeys at bay with remarkably accurate shots over her shoulder. "Do not stop," she warned the other two - the lackeys were terrible shots on moving targets.
<Jessica> Jess had no intention of stopping, closer now she picked out Hope's voice and sped up, releasing Sebastian's hand to open a door with some force.
<Shaw> Sebastian shoved Jess back long enough to check the space beyond the door, only then seeing what was going on at the end of the hall. Another masked guard tried to push himself up to aim and he fired again, then started down the hall at a dead run.
<Deathstrike> Attention torn between his grandfather and the new threat down the hall, he stepped forward to ensure Shaw saw him and his prize. With Stark securely held in front of him, he shifted the blade of his katana to her throat.
<Hope> Hope saw Sebastian about the same time her captor did. "DAD!" It hurt to speak against the blade, but she didn't care. They were rescued!
<Jessica> Jess stopped at Sebastian's shoulder, taking in the scene all at once.
<Viper> Crossing the threshold behind them, Viper maintained the rearguard.
<David> David just grinned. Viper!
<Deathstrike> Dad? Perfect. He turned the edge of the blade, pressing it closer to cut off her air. His free hand snaked to her stomach and made a liberal exploration. "I have enjoyed her company immensely. I hate to see her go."
<Shinobi> He wrestled the blade from the old man's clawlike fingers and slashed the blade across his throat.
<Hope> She had to close her eyes, trying to choke against the blade and simply unable to. She struggled against his hand on her stomach, but the only place to go was back into him.
<David> "Nice work," David told Shinobi, pulling his bloody cuffs back up, shoving the body to the ground. With a kick for good measure.
<Viper> Seeing no more lackeys down the corridor for now, Viper turned for David, she figured Sebastian and Jessica combined probably had Hope covered. She teleported the short distance into the cage and inspected the locks on the chains and the bleeding cut on his arm. "What have they done to you...?"
<David> "Hello, Cupcake," he grinned at her, looking down at his arm. "I'll be fine. I... didn't get the worst."
<Viper> She set about applying small charges to the locks on the cuffs that would break them but not damage David further. She was almost finished when another shot rang out and she yelled in pain and surprise. On reflex, she leveled her weapon at the culprit and returned fire.
<David> "Fuck!" he brought his hands up in surprise, then lowered them to see her. "Shit! Viper!"
<Deathstrike> He screamed for his grandfather, nearly slitting the woman's throat as well on the spot.
<Shaw> Sebastian was afraid to move, his gun pointed at the ceiling and one hand up. "Hope, don't move..."
<Shinobi> He still had the knife and jumped away when Viper appeared, sparing her one confused look. Stealing out of the cage, he stayed silent, moving in behind that masked lunatic who had Hope.
<Shaw> "Just... don't move," he said, keeping his eyes on Hope though he could see Shinobi. And had Shinobi really just killed Oyama Kenji? "We can still come to a mutually beneficial arrangement here, yes?"
<Viper> "I'm fine," she assured him, the bullet had grazed the right side of her face. It was deep but it would heal. "They don't aim very well." And it stung like hell. She blew the charges to set him free.
<Hope> She stopped moving, though, her eyes searching for Shinobi again. She couldn't tell if it was blood or sweat that trickled down her throat, but either way, it wasn't good.
<David> Once his hands were free he marched right to the dead guard and picking the man's head up by his hair, slamming his face into the floor a few times. That done, he flexed his wrists and looked for Hope, pausing when he saw her predicament. What was that idiot boy doing now?
<Viper> Viper was busy checking her pockets because the blood running down her face was distracting and she had something that would fix it.
<Jessica> Jess scanned the room, looking for a way to get to Hope before the younger Oyama could hurt her.
<Deathstrike> His switch to Japanese was sudden and he cared not if the gaijin could follow.
<Shinobi> The man's ridiculous costume and hooded robe made it hard to judge where to aim to do the most damage. He couldn't take a chance with Hope's life. With a prayer and a lunge he sunk the blade into the back of his neck.
<Deathstrike> The shock and pain was nearly enough to make him drop his blade. He shoved the girl away and spun, striking out. The blade buried in the clone's stomach and he grinned viciously, pushing forward and wrenching the hilt.
<Deathstrike> Satisfied, he jerked his katana free and pressed a button, vanishing.
<Jessica> "No!" Jess couldn't process what she was seeing, what did process was the rage. Without a second thought she bolted from the room toward her target, tracking him with her empathy.
<Hope> Hope landed on the floor, the force and the jar causing her to cry out, closing her eyes from the impact. When she opened them again she saw the sword, saw Shinobi, and saw him fall. "NOOOO!" She screamed, crawling to him. "OBI! SHINOBI!" She pressed her hands over his wound, shaking and sobbing.
<David> David just stood there, staring. He couldn't move, couldn't process. That should be him, not the kid.
<Shinobi> It hurt - more than he could imagine, and the pressure made it worse. He looked up at her, unable to speak and raised a bloody hand to her face. Why was he shaking? This was it.
<Shaw> Sebastian stared after Jess, but... he knew where she was going. He trusted her. It took him just a moment to get to Shinobi and Hope, adding his own hands to the pressure over his wound. There was so much blood it already it would be pointless to try to check the wound. "I'm so sorry, little Stark."
<Viper> She swore, knowing exactly what to do now. She'd located what she'd been looking for, a needless injection device full of a serum of her own creation. With a sigh, she started for Shinobi with it.
<David> It was David who grabbed Viper's arm, shaking his head no. "Wait." If she went anywhere near that boy with Hope right there it would end badly.
<Hope> Hope continued to sob, looking down at Shinobi, pressing both of her hands over his on her face. "Obi..."
<Viper> She gave him a questioning look - time was of the essence here!
<Shinobi> "Shhh," he managed, finding his voice. "You'll be safe now." He could see his father there as well... but he wasn't really his father, was he?
<David> Just shook his head again, looking over to Sebastian.
<Hope> "NO! Don't you dare say that! No!" She pressed a hand back on his stomach, trying to keep him from bleeding out. "You have to be okay. You have to! I... I love you! We can get married! We can have kids! Just please don't leave me... Don't go..."
<Viper> Viper gestured to Shinobi with some urgency now and pulled against David's grip, reaching absently with the hand that held the syringe to brush the hair away that was sticking to the cut on her face.
<Shinobi> He sobbed, stroking her face and only smearing blood across her cheek. "...I don't want to go." But his vision was fading and he couldn't feel the wound quite as badly now. "I want... I want to stay with you."
<Shaw> He shook his head, reaching down to smooth his son's hair back from his face. This was unacceptable. Wait... "Viper," he said, looking up at the woman. "Get him out. Get him help."
<David> Now David let her go. That's what he was waiting for.
<Hope> Hope just lay down across his chest, sobbing against him.
<Viper> She crossed the distance quickly, kneeling to inject Shinobi with the serum first, "It's designed to work with a healing mutation but it should still slow the bleeding. I will do what I can."
<Shinobi> The stab made him jump, and it took him time to realize the pressure he felt was Hope. It was an okay way to go. He blinked once, feeling the tears run down his face. "...you made me so happy. Thank you..." he whispered, hand still in her hair as he exhaled.
<Hope> She sat up just a bit, realizing what had just happened. "Obi?" She wiped her face on a non bloody part of her arm, looking at him again. "Obi!? NO! NOOO!!!!" She screamed trying to feel for a pulse with the hand not on his stomach. "NO!"
<Shaw> "Hope, come on." He reached down to pry her off. "If he has any chance at all it's with Viper."
<Hope> "No! Don't let her touch him!" She tried to fight Sebastian, but she crumpled, the pain from her abdomen too much.
<Viper> She reached into another pocket and tossed a spare teleporter at David, "Find Jessica." In the next moment, she was gathering Shinobi to her before she disappeared.
<Hope> "NO! You let her take him!? You let her take him!!!" She fought against Sebastian. "She killed everyone! She killed them all!"
<Shaw> "I know, Hope! I know! She's his only chance, love." He wrapped both arms around her to hold her against him. "Are you hurt?"
<David> "Badly," David told him, pocketing the teleporter. "We have to get to Jessica. I can carry her," he offered.
<Hope> Hope just sobbed against Sebastian, pounding his chest with her fist once.
<Shaw> He carefully felt around the inhibitor collar, finding the clasp. "Hold still, love." Fully charged from their efforts - and his round at the punching bag before they departed - he snapped the collar and carefully removed it. "Take Sum's ability. Just relax and focus."
<Hope> Her hands moved to her stomach, her eyes flashing up to Sebastian immediately. "We have to find the DNA."
<Shaw> "DNA?" It took him a moment to grasp that and his eyes widened. "Heal, we'll find it." Carefully, he held her and got to his feet, nodding at Sum. "I can find Jessica," he said, concentrating on their link.
<Jessica> Jess had found her quarry. She stopped in the doorway to a room full of horrors and stared for a moment before her eyes caught movement and she refocused. "Oyama!"
<Deathstrike> He spun, hand on the hilt of his sword, and stepped in front of the incubation tank with his precious creation.
<Jessica> Seeing his hand on the hilt she just laughed, "Really? You're going to threaten me with a sword?" She charged a venom blast in her hand.
<Deathstrike> "Hai." He drew his blade, reaching into his robe for the knife he'd drawn from his neck and threw it at her.
<Jessica> Jess dodged the knife and fired a blast in the same move, rolling sideways and back onto her feet. "We've done this before, haven't we? Back then you had friends and we still walked away. I don't like your odds." Her eyes narrowed on him, watching for his next move.
<Deathstrike> He phased, letting the bolt pass through him and strike the wall, though it was too close to the tank for his liking. Lead her away! The charges set into the tanks in case of compromise were easy to trigger, he just needed to get to them. Smirking behind his mask, he ran straight at her.
<Jessica> Jess leapt straight up and stuck to the ceiling, tracking him from above before sending another venom blast straight at his back.
<Deathstrike> That blast passed through him as well and he halted at a control panel, solidifying long enough to activate one bank of switches. Three rows of tanks along one side of the room detonated, sending shards of razor-sharp glass and gouts of nutritive fluid into the room.
<Jessica> The explosions were problematic enough - they were loud - but now there was stuff flying around. She turned to dodge what she could and sent concussive blasts to deflect the rest. She dropped down when the worst was over, closer to Oyama this time, trying to coax him into solidifying long enough that she could land a blast.
<Deathstrike> "You also would make an excellent addition to our program." He moved through a tank and came out the other side, solidifying again to reach into his robe for a smoke grenade.
<Jessica> "I think I'll pass." She aimed another blast around the tank.
<Deathstrike> This one connected, at least in part, but shattered the tank as well. The smoke grenade detonated in his hand.
<Jessica> The smoke didn't bother her much, at least not enough to stop her diving into it to grab him and attempt to disarm him before he could recover. She was covered in whatever it was in the tank so she was less her venomblasts now but she still had her hands.
<Deathstrike> The nutritive fluid soaked through his gloves - he couldn't teleport. Yurei struggled to get leverage to turn the long katana on her.
<Jessica> Unfortunately for him, Jess was the stronger by far and she wrapped her limbs around him, catching his wrist and wrenching it so that he'd drop the blade.
<Deathstrike> He slipped in the slick fluid on the floor, fighting to focus enough to phase shift without his power amplifier.
<Jessica> The intensifying of the struggling meant the effect of the blast was wearing off and he'd soon have enough wherewithall to phase again. Releasing his wrist, Jess groped for the blade. Her hand closed on the hilt, the next moment the blade was thrust into his chest.
<Deathstrike> His hands closed on the blade as he lost traction completely, sliding to the floor and staring up at the woman.
<Jessica> Breathing heavily, Jess relaxed her grip on the blade and reached for the mask, lifting it from the chin up over his face. With a horrified cry, she scrambled back away, sliding on the fluid from the exploded tanks and covered in both it and the blood of Yusei Oyama. Yusei who looked so much like Shinobi.
<Shaw> "Here?" He'd heard the explosions and felt Jessica's focus, but now he felt absolute horror from her. Rounding the last corner, he stopped in a doorway. "Dear God..."
<David> David stopped short behind Shaw, his eyes growing huge. "Damn..."
<Jessica> Jess sat hunched against the remains of the tank, staring at her hands. They were covered in Yusei's blood and she was shaking. What had she done?
<Hope> Hope tried to get herself free from Sebastian. "We have to find it. We have to destroy it."
<Shaw> Despite his better judgment, he put down the struggling redhead. "It? Be careful." He helped her steady herself, unable to tell if she looked better or not. Then he saw Jessica.
<Hope> Hope took the distraction as her chance and pulled away from him, looking for anything that had her name on it. Any blood samples, tissue samples, files, anything. It all had to be destroyed.
<Shaw> "Jess, love?" He moved around the tank and that's when he saw Oyama, impaled nearly upright, his sword embedded in the concrete floor. "Jess! Are you alright?" Kneeling in the mess of fluid and tissue, he touched her, checking for injuries.
<Jessica> Jess startled and withdrew from him, trying to shut out all the emotions she felt rushing in at her. Were they hers? She couldn't tell. Her eyes fell on the body again and she hid her face behind her hands, the wetness on them making her gag and think twice about it, pushing herself up before she lost her lunch.
<Hope> Hope was frantically looking for anything useful, and then she saw it. The tank Oyama had so carefully guarded from Jess had an infant inside it. An infant with red hair. It took only a second with Jess' power to blast the tank, sending glass spraying and fluid pouring out onto the floor. But she didn't care. She picked up David's power and the child.
<Shaw> The blast made him duck, blocking Jessica from the glass and he turned. "Hope!"
<Shaw> Turning back to his wife before he saw what Hope was doing, he pushed her hair back. "You're fine. Calm, love." He tried to project a calm he didn't entirely feel and embraced her.
<Jessica> Jess shrieked again at the exploding tank and closed her hands around the fabric of Sebastian's shirt. She was shaking in earnest now and it took some effort to keep herself upright. She closed her eyes tightly so she couldn't see the blood but she could smell it. It was everywhere.
<David> "Shaw...." David warned him as he saw Hope turn around, holding a baby that was starting to breathe... and then it cried.
<Hope> Hope turned slowly to face the others, her eyes looking down at the redheaded infant. It looked exactly like her. Almost. There was something wrong that she couldn't put her finger on until the girl opened her eyes to look up at Hope in between wails. Brown. They were dark brown, just... like... Shinobi's.
<Shaw> He could feel Jessica panicking, but there was little he could do to stop it. And then, he had other problems. "What in merciful Hades..."
<David> David had no idea what he was supposed to do now. He did, however, know he had to get that... thing... away from her.
<Jessica> The cry of the child went right through her and she tensed, trying not to think of Miriam on top of everything else in her mind. She could feel it starting to overwhelm her and she choked on a sob, trying to stifle it against Sebastian.
<Hope> Hope slowly brought her eyes up searching between David and Sebastian for answers.
<Shaw> "It's... not possible." Of course it was, though. Now, he really looked around the room at the tanks and the misshapen things floating in the cloudy fluid. "No..." He looked at the corpse on the floor and realized he wore his son's face.
<Shaw> He looked up again. The infant had red hair. "Hope..." he started, tone warning.
<Hope> She looked down again, cradling the baby just like Sebastian had taught her to hold Miriam. "His eyes...." she brought one hand up to cover her mouth, choking on a sob behind her hand. What had they done?!
<Shaw> "Whose eyes?" Surely not. He frowned and urged Jessica to respond enough to move closer. "Hope, love... if that's what it appears to be..." He shook his head.
<Jessica> Jess knew what she needed, the blank space that was Viper. But she couldn't find it. She had to open her eyes when her feet slid on some more gunk on the floor and she made another sound when she saw what it was.
<Hope> "Obi's...." she told him, lowering her hand to the infant's, a tear dropping onto her body. The infant stopped crying, just looking up at Hope.
<Shaw> Sebastian closed his own eyes, unable to process this horror. "Hope, love... we don't know if it's stable... I understand this is difficult, but..." but what?
<Jessica> In the silence she grew fearful again. Where was Viper? Had something happened to her too? Her panic rose and her vision swam, she stumbled.
<Hope> "But what?" she echoed, searching Sebastian's face again.
<David> "But you said yourself, Hope... we have to destroy your DNA," David tried to help gently.
<Shaw> Jessica's state bled through to him and he felt his heart rate pick up. "Jess, love - Sarkissian is fine. She took Shinobi." It was only a moment later that he realized he'd said it aloud instead of through their link.
<Jessica> She felt her chest tighten at the mention of Shinobi. A glance over her shoulder was involuntary.
<Hope> "What did I do?" Hope asked, more of herself and started to raise the infant to her chest, but David's voice stopped her. Destroy the DNA... She looked down at the baby. It was her DNA alright. "It's just a child..."
<Shaw> "No, it's a clone," he said, holding onto Jessica. It was only once the words were out he realized his mistake.
<Hope> "So is he!" she snapped at Sebastian, holding the baby to her chest.
<Jessica> "Shinobi..." Jess made a move toward the doorway.
<Shaw> "Jess, he's gone." He grabbed her arm to keep her with them and looked to David for help.
<David> David looked between the women. Sebastian could get his wife. He had to get Hope out of here. "Hope... Hope sense her powers! Is she a mutant? What can she do?"
<Hope> Startled by the question, Hope blinked at him, then read the infant's powers, looking up at him and Sebastian quickly.
<Jessica> Jess didn't like the sound of that word and she stared at Sebastian for a long moment.
<Shaw> "Yes? And?" He tore his eyes from Hope when he felt Jessica's upon him. "With Viper, love." He closed his eyes, taking a deep breath. He needed to focus, and perhaps shield himself from his wife.
<Hope> She couldn't say it. She just looked down, not making eye contact with either man.
<David> David pressed the issue. "What is her power, Hope? You can tell us."
<Hope> "Mine." She said softly.
<Jessica> Hope drew Jess' attention now, "He was trying to protect it... the tank..."
<Shaw> That confirmed it, but made nothing easier. "He was creating a weapon."
<Hope> "I was a weapon too... So was Shinobi."
<David> "Not like this, babe. Not one that could walk through secret service security. Not one that could get into the White House residence..."
<Shaw> "It's only been a matter of hours, yet it's this developed? Within weeks he could have used it against Tony, little Stark." And there could be others.
<Shaw> He looked around at the other tanks, and the things contained within.
<David> David kept pressing her. "The guards wouldn't look at the eyes. They would see you. It would sound like you, but it isn't you."
<Hope> "It could be... it could be me! It could have a normal life!"
<Jessica> Jess shook her head, "Could you? Having a start like this?"
<Hope> "Is he not?!" Hope snapped at Jess now, frustrated. "You are all a bunch of hypocrites! Can you not see how they are the same?!"
<David> David cautiously approached her, placing his hands on her cheeks, tilting her face to him. "Can't you see how they aren't?"
<Shaw> Sebastian swallowed, Shinobi had started this way, after all. "Hope... this isn't about Shinobi."
<Jessica> "It's not the same... are you willing to lie to this child like we had to for Shinobi? Could you do that all over again?"
<Hope> Hope looked up at David, then over at Sebastian, and finally Jess. She landed with her eyes back on David, starting to sob as she held the baby tighter.
<David> David held her and the baby carefully. "This isn't you. It isn't your baby. This isn't the same as Shinobi. Think about Tony. You have to protect him from this kind of threat."
<Jessica> Jess tried to pull away from Sebastian again.
<Shaw> "We... don't even know that it would survive, love. How it would grow... if it would grow. In trying to save it out of misplaced love, we could doom it to suffer and die."
<Shaw> He turned to stare at Jess, then let go of her arm after a moment.
<Hope> "You already doom it to suffer and die. I can't... I can't!"
<Jessica> Jess started for the open door and the hall beyond. Though she knew what had to be done, she'd be damned if she was going to be a witness.
<Shaw> He watched her go and dampened their link, shielding himself. "Would you trade its life for Tony's?"
<Hope> Hope swallowed, fighting her tears. "I can't..."
<David> David thought fast and backed up, holding out his arms. "Let me. Let this be on me, not you."
<Hope> Considering that, Hope shut her eyes tight and passed the baby off to David.
<Shaw> Sebastian moved closer to Hope, giving David a nod. He could not do this either. "Little Stark, come here," he said, holding out his arms to her.
<Hope> She went this time, wrapping her arms tightly around Sebastian.
<David> "You should all get out of here. I need to burn this lab." He headed off for a more.. secluded place to murder the infant.
<Shaw> "Let's go, love. It must be done." He led her to the door and through it, looking for Jessica.
<Jessica> Jess had retreated to the corner of the ceiling in the hallway, curled up and huddled protectively against the aura of the place.
<Hope> Hope walked with Sebastian, the fight gone out of her. She had nothing left now.
<Shaw> He spotted his wife and sighed, moving over beneath her and turning to hold Hope. There was little else to do now, and he tried not to think about what was happening in that lab.
<Shaw> Elsewhere, he could still hear Hydra troops cleaning up the stragglers, and knew they were under orders to search the facility, recover, and destroy. It would have to be enough. If any of the genetic samples or research had been transported elsewhere, they could do little about it now.
<Jessica> Seeing Sebastian, Jess crawled slowly down the wall to him and Hope.
<Shaw> He held out his hand and invited her to their huddle.
<Jessica> Jess went to him, burrowing against him and covering her ears with her hands. She didn't want to hear anything. It wouldn't do much good but she could pretend.
<Hope> Hope wrapped an arm around Jess too. That was the best she could do.
<Shaw> He closed his eyes and held them both, bowing his head. It was far too late for regrets.
<David> The hard part done, David started setting fire to the lab and everything in it, making sure all the tanks were destroyed first.
<Jessica> Jess cringed at the explosions around the base and in the lab from the charges set by Hydra troops and those that still existed in the tanks as a failsafe. "Can we go now?"
<David> Walking calmly out of the burning lab, David caught up to them, not bothering to glance behind him. "Let's get out of here." He reached in his pocket for the teleporter.