Do the Right Thing - Chapter 24
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Unfortunately, I think this is going to have to be a moral call. And unfortunately… I think it’s yours to make. We’ll follow your lead.
“No… No. It’s not.”
The other three give you questioning glances.
“It’s not my call to make. It’s hers. All she ever wanted was a choice, and this is her choice to make.”
“So what are you saying?” Lena asks.
“I’m saying read her in. Brief her on the situation and let her decide if she wants to be a part of this or not.” You nod to yourself. You feel sure about this. “If she says ‘no’ that’s it. We leave her alone and we never bother her again.”
Supergirl speaks for the first time, “What exactly do you think she can do? I mean, why even involve her at all? I can literally just crash through the windows of the Tower, grab Wanda and fly away.”
“Yes,” you agree. “You can. You could have this whole time and honestly, I am down with that plan,” you look to Lena who is on the verge of protest.
“But…” you continue. “To be completely honest, we don’t actually know exactly what kind of protocol and precautions are set up at the Tower, and if Lena could find a way to synthesize Kryptonite there is no reason to think Tony Stark couldn’t too and he, like, hates Superman, for some reason I’m sure has to do with the size of his dick.” Maria snorts. “Also… we’re not ready to fully implement an attack against the Order yet, right? You’re still our best source on the inside and if you smashed through the Avengers' Tower to rescue a traitor, that would be it for you in the Order. You would be out of commission.”
“Ok…” Supergirl continues, “I still don’t understand what you think this civilian can do to incapacitate Natasha and free Wanda.”
“I think she can talk her down.”
The other three are looking at you like you’re crazy.
Maria speaks first, “(Y/n)... when I said she was our best bet, I meant use her like a trap, like, lure Natasha out.”
“I know,” you’re quick to clarify. “But… listen. I know Natasha. Like, I really know her. All the pieces didn’t click into place until I learned about Katya and then when Wanda explained a few things to me but… look, she’s not evil, and that’s not just the residue of my Stockholm Syndrome talking. She was a horrifically abused child who clanged to the only solace she ever had and that was Katya. She regrets what she did to her - she wishes she hadn’t - and she’s been looking for a second chance with her for almost 15 years. I think what she really wants is to make amends. So let’s give her the opportunity to fix her biggest regret. Let’s give her the opportunity to make things right by Katya. I think she’ll take it. I think she’ll do anything to make things right with her.”
“And then what?” Lena asks. “Assuming Katya can talk her down, convince her to free Wanda and see the error of her ways? Then what? All is forgiven? She’s given a clean slate despite everything she’s done?”
“No you idiot,” you say to the smartest woman alive. “This isn’t a fucking Disney movie. Then you arrest her for treason, murder, kidnapping, and rape, and when the Order falls and a new justice system is established, she goes to trial, and until then, she rots in a cell here.”
“Ok!” Maria cuts in. “Sounds like the first part of a plan. So I guess that means we’re going to Phoenix. Lena, what’s our closet entry port?”
Lena pulls out a tablet and scrolls for a minute before answering. “Looks like Las Vegas…. Agent Todd is in charge of all of the tech and he’s brilliant but he does have a bit of a gambling problem,” she shrugs.
“So wait, what’s my job again?” Supergirl asks confused
“You’re plan B,” you tell her. “If this all goes to shit, smash and grab and laser eyes are probably going to be really useful.”
“Meet at the portal at 14:00,” Lena instructs. “Wear shorts, it’s 97 degrees in Vegas.”
It’s so… unassumingly normal. That’s all you can think when you pull up outside the nice stucco home with the red tile roof in Scottsdale, Arizona. It is so normal and suburban that you can almost believe that this is Heather and Abdul Cohen’s two story suburban home on the outskirts of Phoenix and she’s a ballet instructor and he’s a high school science teacher and nothing about their lives is noteworthy or extraordinary or tragic. They’re just a nice, normal couple with nice normal kids, living a nice, normal life.
Of course, nothing about the setting gives away the fact that “Heather” is the presumed dead daughter of a Russian Oligarch trained to be a weapon for the KGB or that “Abdul” was a rookie CIA handler fresh out of college sent in to monitor her for any signs of wavering allegiance. Or that their kids are both rescued Hydra experiments.
It all appears exceedingly normal. There’s a Pruis in the driveway, for fucks’ sake.
You ring the doorbell and it swings open almost immediately and… there’s no one there… until you look down and you are met with possibly the cutest kid you have ever seen. She has long, dark curls and big almond eyes and deep dimples in her smiling cheeks and you can’t help but be immediately charmed.
“Hi,” you crouch down to her eye level. “I’m (y/n). I’m a friend of your mom’s, is she home? What’s your name?”
“CAITLIN!” there is a scream from deeper in the house. “What did I tell you about opening the door by yourself, honey?!”
And then Katya is right in front of you.
You stand from your crouched position to meet her head on. She regards you skeptically, wearily, like you’d expect most mothers to do when a stranger shows up at their door and is talking to their kid…. But you notice the calculations she’s doing as well, how she’s sizing you up and what she’s looking for. She might be Heather Cohen, Southwestern suburban housewife, but she is still very much Katya Turgenev, Red Room spy.
Before you can offer any kind of explanation or greeting she asks, “Does this have something to do with Natalia Romanova?”
Damn. She’s good.
She invites the four of you in - You, Maria, Lena, and Supergirl, who you’ve just very recently been informed that her civilian name is “Kara” (and you’ve never signed more paperwork or been sworn to higher secrecy or had your life threatened more than over that information.)
Katya is being a perfect hostess, pouring drinks and setting out snacks but she keeps stealing glances and you and you keep doing the same to her. It’s so strange - to you it feels like a glimpse into your future so for her it must feel like a glance into the past because --- it really is undeniable how similar you look.
When she finally settles and everyone is sitting in her comfortable living room with plenty of coffee and a table full of snacks, she is actually the one to break the silence first.
“I always expected I’d have to face her someday. Can you please tell me what it is I’m walking into and what I need to do?” She’s looking right at you.
It’s the second time in so many days that you’ve had to tell your whole story and it wasn’t any easier the second time.
But when you finish Katya (Heather) just hums in contemplation. “We should do an Ancestry.com test, right?”
“I mean, you have to admit, it is a little uncanny how much we look alike. I wonder if we have some great philandering grandfather in common.”
You almost choke on your coffee. “Yeah, maybe…” you concede. “But as far as I know I don’t have any Russian ancestry, I’m just… very very Catholic so I think that’s mostly like Irish or bust…”
She laughs. “Yes well, many people would be surprised to learn where they actually came from.”
She’s grinning at you and you can’t help but grin back. You can’t explain it, but Katya feels like family. Maybe it’s trauma bonding or maybe it’s the hero status you’ve equated her with. Maybe it’s that you look so much alike, maybe it’s because she looks so much like Lexi… but whatever it is… there’s a bond and you feel it and you know she does too.
“Okaaay,” Lena interrupts your moment. “So, Ka-- Heather, you understand the urgency and what we need you to do. And we understand that it’s asking a lot… we can give you cover and back up, but we cannot guarantee your safety. (Y/N) seems to think you’ll be able to reason with Natasha and that we could possibly free Wanda Maximoff without violence… I’m… I’m not sure that I agree with that assessment, but if you’re willing to try, you’ll have the full might of the Resistance behind you.”
Katya takes a deep breath. “Like I said. I’ve known this moment was coming for a long time. I’m ready to see Natalia again. I’ll do my best to help your friend.”
“Alright,” Maria says, “Can you get a babysitter? We should probably go ASAP.”
It takes about 40 minutes for “Abdul” to get home from work. You watch them speak in soft tones with their foreheads pressed close together and you smile a little bit to yourself because however their relationship started, they’re obviously a partnership now…. And they obviously love each other.
Katya kisses her daughter goodbye and tells her she has to go on a trip, promising to bring her and her brother back presents.
You all 5 drive a few miles out into the desert where you know you won’t be seen before opening the portal and heading back up.
You all fall back through the open portal to the space station and Katya lands on her feet on her first try.
She is the key. This is going to work.
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