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May 3rd, 2016.
The last five months had been great. My relationship with Natasha continued growing stronger and we had only gotten closer, I had actually purchased an engagement ring and was just waiting for the right time to pop the question. Peter Parker had continued to grow as a hero, and I even began tutoring him in physics, engineering, mechanics, robotics, hand-to-hand combat, programming, coding, and even hacking. It barely took up any of my time considering how fast of a study he was, which was good because it freed up time for myself. I had continued inventing tech to aid in protecting the world; including planetary shields that needed to be installed globally, sadly with UN consent.
We were currently headed to Lagos, Nigeria, on a mission to capture Brock Rumlow, when Twitter alerted me to a post by WHiH World News. I had more twitter followers than Katy Perry, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, and Justin Bieber combined! I was quite proud of that. Anyway, apparently Thaddeus 'Thunderbolt' Ross was the new Secretary of State nominee.
I posted this: "That idiot was given the job? He forced the creation of the Hulk, and kept causing battles that damaged cities. #Battle at Culver University #Duel of Harlem" And followed it up with: "This prick should be stripped of his rank and court martialed for his dumbass actions. #Say no to Ross" I turned off my phone afterward, we were nearing Lagos, and I needed my full focus. "Apparently, Thaddeus Ross is a potential Secretary of State, hopefully he doesn't get confirmed."
"Yeah, dudes an unstable asshole." Sam replied.
"Were landing in a few minutes, focus." Cap said.
"I'm focused, just thought you should all know that. I'll tell you all why later." They nodded, and we all began getting ready.
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"Alright, what do you see?" Steve asked Wanda.
"Standard beat cops. Small station. Quiet street. It's a good target." Wanda replied.
"There's an ATM in the south corner, which means..." Steve said. Cameras, I mentally answered. Wanda answered moments later.
"Both cross streets one way." Said Steve. This could turn into a bloodbath if it goes wrong.
"So, compromised escape routes." Wanda said.
"Means our guy doesn't care about being seen. He isn't afraid to make a mess on the way out. You see that Range Rover halfway up the block?"
"Yeah, the red one? It's cute." Wanda replied, I quickly squashed my amusement.
"It's also bulletproof, which means private security, which means more guns, which means more headaches for somebody. Probably us." Natasha said.
"You guys know I can move things with my mind, right?" Wanda asked rhetorically, and overconfidently, in my opinion.
"Looking over your shoulder needs to become second nature." Natasha replied.
"Anybody ever tell you, you're a little paranoid?" Sam asked.
"Not to my face. Why? Did you hear something?"
"Eyes on target, folks. This is the best lead we've had on Rumlow in 6 months. I don't want to lose him." Steve said.
"If he sees us coming that won't be a problem. He kind of hates us." Sam replied.
"Yeah, dude needs a better hobby." I said in amusement.
"Sam, see that garbage truck? Tag it." Steve said.
"Give me X-ray." Sam said, to Redwing. "That truck's loaded for max weight. And the driver's armed."
"It's a battering ram." Natasha and I said at the same time, causing Pietro and Sam to snicker. I overheard one of them say the words 'that's adorable'.
"Go now." Steve said. Pietro and I super-sped away, with me greatly reducing my speed to match that of Pietro's.
I went for the biggest threat and retrieved the bio-weapon and took out all threats near it.
"I've got the weapon, four threats neutralized. Got em before they could get to the trucks, and the centers people are already retrieving the weapon. Anyone need back-up?"
"Steve is fighting Rumlow and is fending off a grenade launcher," Wanda replied.
"On my way," I said, before super-speeding to her side. "Now, I'm here," I said, before telekinetically disarming Rumlow and letting Steve have a fair fight.
As predicted, he quickly dominated Rumlow. Wanda and I joined Steve as he began his interrogation.
"You know, he knew you. Your pal, your buddy, your Bucky." Rumlow said.
"What did you say?" Steve asked.
"He's messing with you, Steve. Focus."
"He remembered you. I was there. He got all weepy about it. Till they put his brain back in a blender. He wanted you to know something. He said to me, 'Please tell Rogers. When you gotta go, you gotta go.'" Rumlow smiled and laughed. "And you're coming with me." He activated a bomb west and Steve flinched as Rumlow's armor ignited. Wanda and I kept the blast contained around Rumlow who grimaced in agony. We lifted him into the air where the explosion finally blossomed, our combined powers easily containing it.
"Team, damage report." Rogers ordered, while I made sure that Wanda didn't over-exert herself.
"None, apart from evidence of a fire fights." Nat replied.
"I got it. Full clean-up and destruction of enemy tech, coming up." I said, before magically enforcing my will over reality and willing it to happen. "Done."
"Lets get out of here," Steve said. "Re-group at the Quinjet."
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June 1st, 2016.
I had spent almost the entire damn month verbally debating the Sokovia Accords. I had systemically destroyed any valid arguement they made, but I planned for this to be the last. Why were they demanding this legislation? Because they think there were almost casualties. Wanda and I had that under complete control.
Insisting gods and demigods register and be analyzed? I laughed for a solid minute and said that was the dumbest idea ever conceived, and said they are unimaginably powerful and beyond mortal comprehension and would require knowledge of biology centuries beyond what humans currently possessed. I asked people what they would do if someone came after their children, and stated that humans and gods were alike in their responses on that matter.
Being forbidden to use their capabilities in defense of others? That was endangering the entire human race and making earth vulnerable to alien invasion, and then pointed out there was at least one race of alien shape-shifters and pointed out that this could even be their idea. They had tried infiltrating in the 90s. I then expounded and said that humanity should be uniting against such threats and discover ways to identify these aliens and decide if they are threats or not. I went to to state that this law vilified and punished those who would defend others, when they didn't have too, and for free. I pointed out that a lot of governments are incredibly corrupt or infiltrated by enemy agents and could easily forbid foreign intervention and threaten nuclear or biological response if opposed.
Enhanced being forbidden to act without the United Nations approval? There are secret societies who defend earth from magical threats and them being interfered with or restrained would risk human extinction or earth being invaded by armies of demons.
Being deemed a threat to the general public? Governments can use this at their discretion and label political, business, or idealogical enemies as this and ship them off to a secret prison. Most importantly, this stripped people of their constitional right to a trial and went against our constitution. In short, to support the Sokovia Accords is to support your rights being taken away at your governments convenience. I finished this point by stating that most of humanity has evolutionary potential in the form of the X-Gene or Terrigenesis, and that didn't even account for other genetic alterations intended to grant enhanced capabilities.
Providing DNA samples and submitting to power analysis? Too risky. That could be used by enemies to strip people of their powers or create weapons designed to exterminate earths most powerful defenders in massive numbers. I cited the mediocre cyber-security of the UN and it's member nations compared to advanced alien races and the private sector as cause for distrust.
Tracking devices? Again, far too dangerous. Enemies gain knowledge of habits, routines, and family and friends. These devices could be easily hacked by enemies to gain revenge, leverage, or outright kill the wearer.
No creation of artificial intelligence was somewhat understandable, but safeguards could be installed. Tony was just so arrogant that he didn't create them and humanity was nearly wiped out because of it. I noticed that he was glaring at me, after I said that.
"In short, ladies and gentlemen these Accords are pure stupidity, and end in guaranteed human extinction or slavery. They were no doubt designed by either an alien infiltrator or idiotic know-it-all paper pushers with delusions of genuine importance who were unwittingly trying to regulate humanity to it's end. As history shows, politicians exceed at mass destruction through over-regulation or legislation, while trying to expand their control or while trying to prove what big smart boys they are to their mommies." I finished, the last part getting thunderous laughter. "Are there any questions?"
"How would you protect the world if you were in charge?" Christine Everhart asked. "You seem to criticize, but not offer any real alternatives."
"I'm glad you asked that, Miss Everhart." I said, before showing images of my planetary shielding. "This is my first solution. Planetary shielding that can withstand around two-thousand 30 megaton nuclear weapons and derives power from a massive array of batteries located all around the world. One trillion to build, and around a hundred billion yearly to maintain." I said, to the rooms shock. "Keep in mind that this is global security and would require all countries to pitch in, and is easy to upgrade by simply creating more power plants for the shielding. I estimate this could last fifty years."
"Second up, we have space-stations with advanced energy-based weaponry and observational capabilities. I estimate, based on current knowledge of alien races, that it's weapons could severely damage the best they have to offer. It's all modular, so that it can upgraded at the worlds convenience or when essential updates are available." I pulled up the space hanger. "This can house, repair, and maintain up too one thousand space fighters and hundreds of transports, and all essential personnel for the task. The weapons station costs about a hundred billion to build and place, the combo of the two around five-hundred billion. The jets themselves come in at a surprising twenty-five million each, and greatly surpass every known design. I have prototypes ready for demo if any countries are actually interested."
"Trying to replace Tony Stark?" Everhart asked in amusement.
"No. I'm way smarter and better looking," I replied, causing most of the room to laugh. "The point is, that there are plenty of viable defense options, they just cost a lot to build and place. Last I checked, the combined funding for all space programs amounted to roughly forty-one billion, and they are basically wasting resources. Governments need to pool their resources, set aside old grudges and defend the planet in a meaningful way. All the division and discrimination on this planet, whether it be racial, religious, nation, gender, or genetic oriented needs to stop, because quite frankly none of those divisions mean anything, we are all human beings; well except for any unknown aliens, but still." I was pleased that several people nodded in agreement.
"Does this mean you're pro-Inhuman?" Jeffrey Mace, of International Affairs asked.
"Yes, I am pro-Inhuman. I'm pro-mutant too. I encourage nations to accept these people and grant them the same rights as every other citizen. Honestly, apart from having super-powers or physical deformities there is really no real difference between us. This is, quite simply, another civil rights issue, and just another excuse for bigots to spew their senseless hatred at another minority, and without being prosecuted for it by their coldly indifferent or outright supportive governments." I was hoping that harsh remark would force the governments of the world to take positive actions, and others to compare anti-mutant and anti-inhuman sentiment to that of discrimination against those of african descent.
"Any other questions?" I asked.
"Yes," Christine Everhart said, standing up. "You have outlined great defenses for space, but who's gonna control all of that?"
"Hopefully an agency that's formed with the backing of all members of the United Nations and funded by all of them. It will need massive funding. I would personally merge the space programs of multiple nations or all of them, and recruit the best the various air forces have as fighter pilots; the top ten or fifteen percent ideally. Long term, the planets space force would eventually need armies to fight enemies on their own turf, and transport for said armies." I said, receiving mixed responses from the reporters.
"Isn't that awfully pessimistic?" Everhart asked.
"It's realistic. Earth needs to be able to project it's power and influence to be considered a genuine power and cause those that would do us harm to reconsider. Eventually earth will be attacked again, and we will need to counter-attack and defeat the enemy. War is horrible, don't misunderstand, but sadly all the other races apparently think otherwise. We have the choice of defeating them and letting that defeat serve as a warning to others, or taking the abuse and letting the universe think earth is incapable of counter-attacking, can barely defend itself, and is an easy target. This would make us targets for slave organizations, empires, and advanced civilizations who merely want to our planets resources." Everyone was nodding in agreement.
"Well, I've been at this almost a month, and it's time for people to make their choices and decide which point of view is most commonly shared. Please make sure that your government is aware of your opinion. They serve you, and if they refuse to do their duties, then you can always vote them out and create term limits where needed. There are also polls on the newly launched Avengers website where you can give your opinion, find updates, a few blogs written by us, and other useful information." I said to everyone's interest, the URL appeared on the screen behind me.
"You can also download a free app that will alert you of combat zones, terror threats, bad weather, natural disasters, and various other threats. It will suggest alternate routes to avoid these dangers and warn you of where we will be fighting. Various law enforcement agencies, governments, and militaries will be provided similar technology, free of charge, to warn them so that they can oversee evacuations and/or mount defenses. Now, some of you have probably been wondering how that planetary shielding would be powered, and the answer is quite simple: nuclear power. There are far too many nukes in the world and this would further incentivize disarmament, and I've also found ways to purify nukes of their radioactive downsides, so that you get the blast, but not the fall out. This will be given to the United States of America, free of charge, and will hopefully be shared among the nuclear powers; to atleast minimalize the damage when one is inevitably detonated. Alternatively, with the governments blessing, I can share this knowledge with them."
I really hoped that these actions earned us a lot of good will from the people. I kind of doubted it though.
I left the podium, and the reporters took that as their cue to leave.
"That was well done, Percy," Steve said in approval, respect, and undisguised admiration for what I had achieved. Several nations had already been convinced to withdraw their support, instead opting my suggested defense initiatives. Voluntary registration to receive training and form teams with government support, and only targeting those who use abilities for crime, and a more tolerant policy for superheroes; so long as they capture but not kill criminals, use excessive force, or a couple other smaller infractions.
"Thanks, Steve. Hopefully the Accords don't become law, if they do, then I partly wasted an entire month." I replied, quite tired, mentally.
"You just displayed technology that surpasses anything else on earth, created an app that could save millions, pointed the world towards the bigger threats, championed civil rights for two minority groups, disproved the validity of the Sokovia Accords and insulted the idiots who wrote them, and dismantled their arguments, presented solutions that could save humanity, and made a major break-through in nuclear engineering, that might one day remove any dangerous radiation from the world." Tony summarized, getting an amused look from me and everybody else. "You consider that 'a partly wasted month?'"
"If I don't achieve my main objective, yes. Those are just smaller benefits from my process."
"How about this, then: you're smarter than I am, and I'm finally willing to admit it." Tony said, finally admitting one of his glaring inadaquacies.
"I know, and I'm better looking." I replied, causing the Avengers to laugh at the expression on Tony's face. "What? I already knew that!" I added, when I saw his annoyed expression.
"Mr. Aegaeus," The voice of Thaddeus Ross said from behind me.
"Creepy old guy who stalks superheroes," I greeted back, causing a couple Avengers to snort or outright laugh. "Okay, I got that joke out of my system. I suppose you are here in regards to the tech displayed, the nuke improvements or my suggestions." I guessed.
"Yes," Ross replied, choosing to ignore the insult. "The president is interested in all of it, and so are several world leaders, but the space agency and shielding is likely a dream for a couple decades."
"A couple decades? It shouldn't take more than one. I already have the equivalent of three space shuttles, a dozen space fighters, twenty shielding generators, and an observational space station that just needs to be launched, staffed and stocked. I constructed that in under one year in my small factory with robots doing the grunt work. With global resources and multiple nations pitching in, we could be in space well before ten years are up and already have defenses in place. If the UN can't have it done in a timely manner, put me in charge and I'll handle it."
"You're a civilian," Ross replied in derision.
"Who was trained by Olympian approved trainers, has training vastly superior to any soldier, and can slaughter entire armies with his bare hands or with a sword. I can build the tech and set-up the agency, and could lead it, but that's negotiable." I said, before withdrawing the data on my improvements to nuclear weapons and handing it to Ross.
"Thank you. I'll get this to the right people." Ross said, before walking away.
"Bye! Good luck on bringing back the seventies porn mustache!" I said loudly, causing a lot of laughter and causing Ross to stop and glare murderously at me. "That was fun."
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June 5th, 2016.
The last few days did not look promising. The Sokovia Accords had divided the world, but an incredibly powerful and vocal minority seemed to be pushing for it to pass and become law. The American people became largely opposed to it, after I finished my campaign against the Accords, but the actual government was going against them and saying it was for the best and that they were elected to ensure their well-being. The most powerful countries were supporting the Accords and dooming the world in the process, fortunately the people of those countries were split and in some cases now opposed the Accords. I was glad that a majority of a several countries opposed it, and was hoping that would benefit the world greatly. King T'Chaka was especially obsessing over the 'what if's' and causing trouble.
Natasha and I discussed it and we both agreed to protect those who fled registration while keeping ourselves anonymous, and were both opposed to registration. Steve, Sam, Wanda and Pietro were also staunchly anti-Accords, and I prepared safe houses for all of them; including large ones if they all wanted to stay together or even move into my palace. We were essentially at war to protect this planet from it's own useless leadership at this point, and price for losing was far too high to even consider accepting our supporters as acceptable losses. I had already looked into the option for building my own forces to defend the planet and the cost was massive, trillions in funding and a requirement for huge amounts of personnel, robots or having everything run by an A.I. Using A.I in that capacity was just too risky to truly consider as a viable option.
Now, I just had to deal with a smug looking Thaddeus Ross.
"So, what's up porn stache? You look like you finally caught Banner instead of repeatedly suffering embarrassing failures." I said, angering him. "By the way, did Hulk smash your daughters tight little ass? I've always wondered. I know I hooked up with Betty years ago and she could handle my size." The Avengers who were anti-Accords found this hilarious. Even Tony was fighting to contain his own amusement and losing. Just when Ross was about to have an outburst, I cut him off. "Now, why are you here?"
Ross looked like he was about to explode! He began taking deep breathes and mentally counting, which caused me to smirk and anger even more.
"Five years ago... I had a heart attack. I dropped right in the middle of my backswing. Turned out it was the best round of my life, because after 13 hours of surgery and a triple bypass... I found something 40 years in the Army had never taught me: Perspective. The world owes the Avengers an unpayable debt. You have fought for us... protected us, risked your lives... but while a great many people see you as heroes, there are some... who would prefer the word 'vigilantes'." Ross said, after calming himself for an entire thirty seconds. I thought about interupting him to mess with him, but decided against it.
"And what word would you use, Mr. Secretary?" Natasha asked.
"How about 'dangerous'? What would you call a group of US-based, enhanced individuals... who routinely ignore sovereign borders... and inflict their will wherever they choose and who, frankly, seem unconcerned about what they leave behind?" After saying this, Ross displayed a map on a big screen, zooming on to a city. "New York. Washington DC. Sokovia. Lagos."
"Okay. That's enough." Steve said, stopping him.
"For the past four years you've operated with unlimited power and no supervision. That's an arrangement the governments of the world can no longer tolerate. But I think we have a solution." Ross put a thick document on the table. "The Sokovia Accords. Approved by 70 countries..." Here, Ross glared at me for daring to question my political overlords, and costing them valuable support, "it states that the Avengers shall no longer be a private organization. Instead, they'll operate under the supervision of a United Nations panel, only when and if that panel deems it necessary."
"The Avengers were formed to make the world a safer place. I feel we've done that." Steve argued.
"Tell me, Captain, do you know where Thor and Banner are right now? If I misplaced a couple of 30 megaton nukes... you can bet there'd be consequences. Compromise. Reassurance. That's how the world works. Believe me, this is the middle ground." Ross countered.
"So, there are contingencies." Rhodes said.
"Is that idiocy about demanding gods and demi-gods register still in it?" I asked in annoyance. I was incredibly pleased with the result of my campaign to defeat the Accords, but was wondering about that one.
"Yes," Ross replied, with a satisfied smirk.
"Well, the worlds screwed if they decide to withhold rain, sun light, or fertility to the earth. My advice, if you see a demi-god, disobey any orders involving them. If humanity goes to war with even one pantheon, humanity could easily be annihilated in minutes or even seconds if they don't care about the planet." I confessed in true horror. "Congratulations, Ross. I wasn't trying to protect deities and their children from you; I was trying to protect humanity from wrathful deities. The United Nations may have just guaranteed human extinction or at minimum it's own destruction." Everyone looked horrified.
"You're bluffing," Ross replied unsurely and even he looked unnerved.
"And the fact that you would even take that chance proves how unfit for your job you are. I know, that I won't convince you that I'm not bluffing, you'll have to learn the hard way and hope that the consequences aren't permanent or severe."
"Three days from now, the UN meets in Vienna to ratify the Accords." Steve glanced at Tony. "Talk it over."
"And if we come to a decision you don't like?" Natasha asked.
"Then you retire." Ross replied.
"I'm awfully young to retire and you know what they say about idle hands." I quipped as Ross walked away. I decided to continue with a smaller twitter campaign to achieve meaningful change and hopefully have this eventually repealed.
"These Accords are institutionalized discrimination directed at those who exceed the norm, and our government is supporting it. #ImpeachEllis"
"Are you American? Are you enhanced? Then your president just stripped you of your civil rights. At least he was polite and didn't say the words 'F**k you,' to the American people. #ImpeachEllis" After posting that, I noticed the Avengers finally got alerts.
"Damn it, Percy!" Rhodes exclaimed angrily.
"I know. In hindsight, I should have led with that." I said, while crafting more tweets to remove other tyrants from governments around the world. "That should ensure future presidents serve the people and not their own will."
"You just said a president should be impeached!"
"A president who went against the constitution and deprived people of their rights. His impeachment is entirely legal and well deserved. You are so blindly loyal to your government, even when it betrays and oppresses it's people. That's why you disgust me, Rhodes, because if they created a secret police to oppress them, you would join it no questions asked. You're no hero. No Patriot. Just a well-trained dog, who would tear people apart, without question." Most of the Avengers even seemed to agree with my analysis, and Rhodes and Tony both looked shocked at what we all thought about Rhodes.