They didn’t put her in a concrete box. They put her on another plane, and she cried the entire flight. Not the loud, uncontrollable sobbing she’d done so many times already, because she no longer had the energy for it. She cried to herself while the agents guarding her sat in stoic silence, as if she wasn’t even there. Her face burned, and she couldn’t even do anything about it because her hands were cuffed behind her back, and she couldn’t even hide inside her enormous coat because they took it from her when they searched her.
The flight was short, heading out to the water, and then to a waiting aircraft carrier. She didn’t know SHIELD had aircraft carriers, but she wasn’t surprised. SHIELD had resources like nothing else. She was taken to a tiny little room with a table and a couple of chairs, which definitely felt like a precursor to the concrete box. When the agent took the handcuffs off her, Darcy immediately sat down and buried her head in her arms, wishing she could do anything but cry. She felt like she’d never be able to stop, and that it was all she was going to do for the rest of her life.
She had no idea how long she’d been left alone in that tiny room. At one point, she could have sworn it felt like the whole aircraft carrier had started to fly as well, but Darcy was so worn out and worn down she knew she couldn’t even trust her own senses. Eventually she wore herself out, completely unable to do anything other than sit numbly and stare at the wall across the table; grey and textureless and representing everything she had to look forward to. How long she sat there, she had no idea. It could have been minutes, or days. But then the door opened again, and Coulson stepped inside, wearing a face that was completely unreadable.
"We’ve gone through a lot of trouble to find you, Miss Lewis," Coulson said. He stood on the other side of the table, holding his hands in front of him like he was waiting in line at the bank. "Do you want to tell me what happened?"
Darcy felt sick. She wanted to ask him what part he meant. If he meant the part where Loki had beat and repeatedly raped her, or the part where she knew what SHIELD had done to him in the first place. She didn’t say any of it though, and just stared at her hands.
"Where’d he go, Miss Lewis?" Coulson asked after a few moments. "Did he tell you that?"
Darcy sniffled and tried to dry her face with her hands. "Another planet," she said. "Presumably one where they don’t cut people open for fun."
"Whatever he might have told you—"
"It wasn’t a fucking lie," Darcy said, cutting him off. "I saw what you did to him with my own eyes. I took his fucking stitches out myself. Later he told me he was awake when you did it. Why the fuck would he lie about that?"
She was trembling and wanted to be sick, and she didn’t care. With just a few words, Coulson had managed to reignite every ounce of her anger, and he was the only target for it.
"Miss Lewis," Coulson said after a moment. "Loki is a very dangerous man. We need to know anything you know about him."
Darcy looked up at him, trying to quash her anger enough to think clearly.
"Wait. ‘Whatever he might have told you.’ You knew he’d get better." She remembered what Loki said in a tiny hotel room in Greenland. "You fuckers knew because he’d got better before. And then you did it to him again."
She was defending him, and she hated herself for it. He was horrible, and he deserved to be locked away for the rest of his freakishly long life, but that didn’t include being someone’s lab rat. The same anger that had made her pick him up in the first place burned in her, and she remembered exactly why she had gone through two weeks of hell with him.
"We needed to understand what we were dealing with," Coulson said, as if he were talking about checking the weather forecast.
"Bullshit. You were handed a shiny new toy, and you wanted to play with it until it broke," Darcy said. She laughed, completely without mirth, and understood why Loki kept talking about burning the entire planet to the ground. "He’s going to tear you to pieces."
It was the first thing she said that seemed to get any reaction from Coulson. It wasn’t a big reaction, but he obviously didn’t like what he’d heard. "What do you mean?" he asked.
"He’s coming back," Darcy said. "It’s all he talked about. How he was going to raise an army and destroy everything."
"How’s he going to do that?" Coulson asked.
Darcy shrugged and shook her head. She wanted to scream. "How should I know? You assclowns ambushed us before we got where he wanted to go. If you’d waited, you might have even seen how he travels from planet to planet."
Coulson didn’t seem to like that either. Darcy didn’t give a single flying fuck what he liked. Her face still felt hot and wet, and she tried to dry it again, but nothing helped. After a moment, Coulson finally sat down opposite her, lacing his hands together on the table.
"That’s a pretty nasty bruise you’ve got there. Want to tell me about that?" Coulson asked.
Darcy still hadn’t seen herself in a mirror, but she knew exactly what Coulson was talking about. She wanted to tell him what Loki had done to her, but the words would not form on her tongue. She wanted to tell him that she wasn’t on Loki’s side; that he’d grabbed her and took her with him, but those words wouldn’t form either. And suddenly she thought of sulphur and a wolf in sheep’s clothing tender moment, and she knew why she couldn’t say it. Just like he had gagged her before, letting her scream when no one would hear it, he’d gagged her again. Only this time there was no screaming. This time, he had taken her entire voice from her.
Instead of screaming she shook her head and wanted to be sick.
"You were with him for two weeks," Coulson said, pulling the exact same trick Loki had pulled, dropping to a softer tone. "And you’re telling me he only talked about one thing the entire time. Nothing else?"
Darcy shook her head. He talked about so much more, and she couldn’t say a thing. "Just how much he hated you," she said.
"Miss Lewis," Coulson said. He took a deep breath, like he was struggling with words of his own. "I want to make this easy for you. But I can only do that if you cooperate with me."
She wanted to tell him. She tried to tell him, but every time she even thought of the words to say, it was like her tongue turned to lead. She realised that Loki had expected her to fail in some way, and had decided to protect his investment. She wondered how early he had done it. Again, her mind went to thoughts of that morning, sitting on the same bed she’d been raped on, terrified and unable to say a word. She remembered how Loki had smiled at her, pleased and almost smug, like her silence was exactly what he’d wanted.
"I don’t know what you want me to say," she said finally.
She looked down at her hands, and the bruises around her wrists. She wondered how obvious it was that he had raped her, and if Coulson just needed to hear it as a formality. She wondered if she had bruises elsewhere, hidden no one could see.
"He’s a dangerous man, Miss Lewis. And I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that," Coulson said, repeating himself as if she didn’t already know. "Before he found his way to you, he’d already killed eight highly trained men. Which make me wonder why he kept you alive."
Darcy was angry all over again. It was like Coulson was picking his words specifically to piss her off.
"Maybe because you cut him open, and when he got away he was sick and scared and didn’t speak the language," she said.
Maybe it was because he knew he’d got her pregnant.
"He didn’t seem very sick to me today," Coulson said.
"He got better," Darcy said, surprised at the bitterness in her own voice.
He’d got better because of what he’d taken from her, repeatedly. She knew that now. And she wanted to tell Coulson that as well. She wanted to scream it in his face. And yet, the words simply refused to form.
Coulson looked at her, completely unreadable, but Darcy could see where his gaze lingered on her face. She let him look, because she had nothing left to hide from anyone. He could form his own conclusions from the marks Loki had left on her body, as if she were a canvas on display for everyone to see.
"If you think of anything else you want to tell me," Coulson said, standing up, "I’ll be around."
"Go to hell," Darcy said, looking away. She didn’t know why she said it, aside from being angry and exhausted and terrified.
He didn’t say anything else as he walked out of the room, leaving Darcy once again alone and isolated. This time it didn’t last for long, and one of the agents from before stepped back into the room only moments later.
"Come with me," he said.
Knowing it was all over, and that there was nowhere else to go, Darcy got up to follow him. He took her by the arm and led her out to the corridor, through an absolute maze of twists and turns she’d never remember, and took her to another room. This one was at least moderately furnished, with a cot and a sink, and a toilet behind half a divider. It was definitely a precursor to the concrete box.
"Put these on," the agent said, handing her something that looked suspiciously like blue scrubs. "I’ll be back for the clothes you’re wearing."
He closed the door, and Darcy was once again alone. She looked at the clothes in her hand, and decided before she’d even unfolded them that they were definitely scrubs. She looked around, but if there was a camera in the room, they’d hidden it well. Not knowing what else to do, Darcy sighed and took off her shirt, replacing it with the top she’d been given. The V-neck and short sleeves showed off a few more bruises she hadn’t even noticed, which only made the next part harder. She stalled for a long moment, struggling to gain the nerve to take off her pants. They were the same jeans she’d worn the first time Loki had held her down, she realised. She’d put them back on that morning, and hadn’t even noticed. With a steeling breath, she pulled them down and closed her eyes at the stains inside the fabric. It wasn’t a lot, but blood was blood, and she knew exactly where it had come from. Her thighs and hips had been bruised to hell as well, and it was all the last thing Darcy wanted to see. She quickly pulled on the pants she’d been given, unsurprised to find they had an elastic band instead of a drawstring. Not wanting to deal with it, she kicked her clothes over toward the door and sat down on the little cot, feeling suddenly exhausted and entirely overwhelmed.
A few minutes later, the door opened again and the same Agent stepped inside. He found her clothes up against the wall and bent to pick them up, putting them into a clear plastic bag with a big yellow label. He took her shoes as well, leaving behind a pair of canvas slippers instead. She couldn’t say the words out loud because of whatever Loki had done to her, but Darcy knew that SHIELD would figure it out on their own quickly enough, if they hadn’t already.
As the agent left her without a single word, Darcy wondered once again what SHIELD would do to her down the line. She wondered if Loki had the same suspicions and fears, and if that’s why she wasn’t able to say anything about what he’d done to her. She wondered if he feared them enough to think they’d do to a child what they’d done to him. She wondered if he thought they were stupid enough that they wouldn’t notice without being told. Either way, she knew Loki was afraid of SHIELD. She’d seen it on his face from the moment they’d left Iceland. He’d looked exactly like he had that first night, only with a side helping of pissed off.
She wondered if he would make good on his remaining threats. Every other horrible thing he’d promised to do, he’d made good on. But she had no idea how long it would take him to raise an army and come back. He didn’t seem to know how long people even lived, so for all Darcy knew, he’d take a few centuries to come back with his army.
Unable to think about it any more, she curled up on the cot, putting her back to the door. The cot was rock hard and covered with a scratchy blanket, but she didn’t care. Nothing mattered anymore. Loki had won, SHIELD had won, and somehow Darcy was the only loser in the whole thing.
Leave a Reply