09 June 2016 @ 01:10 am
[fic] MCU/Ant-Man/CA:CW - This wonderful plan, without danger or loss (2/3); PG-13  
Title: This wonderful plan, without danger or loss [2/3]
Rating: PG-13
Characters: Hope van Dyne, Hank Pym, Luis, Kurt, Dave
Pairings: hint of Scott Lang/Hope van Dyne
Words: 4,654
Summary: When she sees men in dark suits hovering by the front door, she immediately knows that at some point in the past few days, Scott Lang made a very poor life decision.
A/N: Spoilers for CA: Civil War | Not beta-read. Apologies for the mistakes, etc. :)



The initial plan was as simple as a smash and grab—infiltrate the Pentagon, grab the suit then get out as fast as possible.

But then she realized that there will be a lot of complications if they steal the suit first before getting Scott out. First of all, it would signal that a rescue will be underway. And second, if they steal only the suit, Ross will know it’s them (he’s not going to use this much manpower on all of them if he didn’t suspect anything. The fact that they’ve managed to turn their very expensive bugs into junk should have been enough to tell him that they’re more than capable of doing something downright shady)

And she knows that Hank had realized this too because she saw his slight hesitation when talking about this possible strategy, as though he knows she’s immediately going to figure out what’s wrong with it but he’s putting it out there in the smallest chance that she won’t.

“Stealing the suit first will make it easier to break Scott out.” Hank reasons. He hasn’t raised his voice – not yet – but they’re already keeping their distance from each other, both knowing how this conversation is going to end.

“They know he goes tiny. If the suit’s gone, they’ll know someone’s going to break them out. And they’re going to take serious precautions to prevent infiltration.” Hope replies, crossing her arms in front of her.

Hank sighs, “There are thousands of ways to infiltrate a well-secured building. They can tighten their security all they want but trust me; you will have no problems going in or out.”

She knows he’s speaking from experience. She still hasn’t reconciled the idea that her father, a scientist, could and had toppled governments during his time with SHIELD. He may not be able to physically do that anymore, but his knowledge and experience with these things isn’t something that she can just ignore.

“Even if we do get the suit to Scott, what about the rest of the people with him?”

“What about them?”

She angles her head to the side, looking at her father with narrow eyes. “Hank.” She says his name with sharpness that could cut flesh.

He lets out a huff of exasperation, “You’re only one person, Hope. You can’t save everybody.” Hank starts to walk out of his study, “I’ll be in the basement to work on your wings. You’re welcome to join me if you want.”

Hope pinches the bridge of her nose after Hank leaves the room.

She’s not going to concede to Hank’s point just yet. They’re still at the preliminary planning stage of… whatever the hell this is. They still don’t have Scott’s location. For all they know, he’s being held in the middle of a rainforest, which might be a bit more dangerous to tiny creatures (although Hank might rebut this with a, “I went to the Amazon as Ant-Man to determine if Soviet agents were operating as rebel forces. This was before you were conceived so I obviously got out”).

She sinks on the couch. At the very least, she can take consolation that their little debate now did not devolve into an ugly shouting match. It’s refreshing, actually. It sounded like an adult conversation.

However, she doesn’t know if she’ll compromise with Hank on this one. Stealing from the Pentagon is not the same as stealing from Darren Cross. She likes her freedom, thank you very much (she’s going to kill Scott for putting them in this position). With any luck, Kurt will have something by this afternoon. They need to get a reality check of what they’re up against.

Her phone vibrates and she fishes it out of her pocket. There’s a reminder in her calendar about her lunch meeting with Pym Tech’s San Francisco-based staff. She texts her assistant to email her the agenda for the meeting, since the only thing she can’t remember what else to be discussed aside from the progress of the ongoing construction of the new building.

Hope stares into space, holding her phone to her chest. She thinks about Scott and how he doesn’t seem to consider the consequences of his actions. She knows why he said yes—he gushes like a schoolgirl when he talks about Captain America, the yardstick for the ideal superhero (“I feel like I just need to be an even better person, you know? For Cassie… and for Captain America – in case I meet him in person – because the only way you know you’re a good superhero is if both your kid and your hero are proud of you, right?”) but she wants to know if he thought about Cassie before he said yes.

She knows he didn’t think of the consequences of saying yes, but she can’t understand why he’d risk his life by going large when he couldn’t handle it the first time around. She wonders if he realized he could have been killed in that airport or if he merely shook off those thoughts (because Captain America).

Did he even say goodbye to Cassie before he left?

She admits that she’s angry that she has to pick up after him. Scott has a predilection for doing the wrong things for the right reasons. And the more she thinks about him and his stupid decision, she gets even angrier. But worry prevails because she also knows that he didn’t know just how far-reaching the consequences of saying yes to Captain America were (did anybody?).

Her phone vibrates again. She doesn’t have to look at it to know that her assistant has sent her the agenda for today’s meeting.

Hope stays seated for a few more minutes, appreciating the silence, before pulling herself up and go to the lab to say goodbye to Hank. She has CEO duties to attend to.

~*~*~

She’s late.

The meeting started on time but ended late, which means she’s also late for their meeting with Luis, Kurt and Dave in the off-site lab. It takes her even longer to get there, because it wasn’t easy evading the van that has been trailing her since she left the meeting. The bug and the tracker they put in her car, however, were disabled by Hank and the ants this morning while she was still asleep.

She circles the surrounding areas thrice before driving her car into the lab’s garage, the door automatically closing behind her.

This off-site lab was supposed to be the site of Pym Technology, back when it was still an idea in Hank’s head. He bought the land with the intention of building Pym Tech on it but it was it was her mother who suggested that it be built where it used to stand (and where it will stand once again).

When she kicked him out of the company, Hank built a lab to rival that of Pym Tech. They didn’t notice him build it— he had capitalized on his reputation as a recluse, and also because the land was under the name of one of his aliases under SHIELD.

Speaking of Hank, his car’s already in the garage. When she walks inside, she finds him in the middle of a… spirited discussion with Luis and Dave while Kurt keeps busy with his laptop.

“If not for that movie, we’ll all probably go, ‘William Randolph Who?’ instead of ‘that dude who named his sled after his mistress’ hoo-ha.” she hears Dave say as she walks to the middle of the room. The actual workshop overlooks the room where they are—the place where they train in their suits, recreating locations for infiltration simulations, and beating up crash-test dummies (and dummies made out of ballistic gel).

“No, man, he didn’t name his sled after his mistress’ hoo-ha, it’s the other way around.” Luis corrects.

Kurt looks at his friends, “Where did you get this? I watched movie from start to finish. Rosebud was clearly name of sled.”

“Well, I think Citizen Kane is overrated.” Hank remarks. Audible, shocked gasps come from both Luis and Dave, and Hank continues, “It’s a shallow look on Hearst’s true impact and the power of media to influence society and policy.”

“Yo man, I don’t hear you shitting on the Pulitzer Prize.”

Hank shrugs, “It’s a by-product of guilt and a way to compensate for all the wrongs he did in the name of ruthlessness and competition.”

Hope puts her handbag on top of the table, beside Kurt, “I’m glad you four are getting along…?”

Luis gives her a little wave and a bright smile.

“Yeah, yeah. We’re just discussing about…” Dave trails off and glances at Hank, “one of the greatest films of all time.”

Hope hides her amusement. Dave looks truly offended with what Hank said and Luis looks like he’s going to have a heart attack any minute now. A glance at Hank tells her that he’s messing with the two.

“What else did I miss aside from this interesting discussion of the greatest movie of all time?”

The light mood turns somewhat somber.

“Kurt?” Hank says.

The younger man nodded his head and motions her to follow him to the other side of the lab, near the gym that was built just for her. Hank basically redid his lab back home, except he had outfitted this one with state-of-the-art equipment and it’s the size of an industrial warehouse.

She sits in front of the monitors installed on the wall as Kurt types on his keyboard. A few seconds later a video flashes on the screen.

“Found airport videos after fight.” He says, his voice sounding a little bit shaky. The video is split into three screens, covering different angles of people in costumes being apprehended or rushed to an ambulance.

The media reported this as an attempt to arrest the Winter Soldier. The slant was that the Avengers themselves were in a disagreement on how to approach the capture, with Captain America refusing a capture-or-kill order. It was a clever way of not painting Captain America in a negative light; he was a man so upright, that he cannot accept the execution of a criminal without due process.

The video on the left side shows someone being brought to an ambulance. The news also reported that Col. Rhodes was gravely injured during the fight. The video on the right, on the other hand, shows Scott’s limp body being half-dragged, half-carried by the German police towards a heavily-fortified truck. This wasn’t reported in the news. In fact, nobody has mentioned the fact that some Avengers were apprehended instead of the Winter Soldier.

Hope keeps her eye on the video, “Do we know who’s with Scott in that truck?”

“Uh, Wanda Maximoff, Hawkguy and the Birdman.” Kurt zooms in on the video and she clearly sees the Vision (she thinks that’s what he’s called) restraining Wanda Maximoff, “I don’t know if there are more of them.”

The ambulance was escorted out of the airport by the German police while the fortified trucks were escorted out by the police, the military, Iron Man and the Vision.

“Used street cams to track trucks.” Kurt says, and points to the screen, “German politsiya and military checkpoints all throughout the trip.”

The trucks drive out to a small airfield where two small planes are waiting. The video doesn’t go any nearer and she watches as the trucks get smaller and disappear from sight.

“Is this the closest you could get?”

“No cameras inside airfield. However,” Kurt takes something from the desk underneath the monitors, and gives it to her, “Zoomed in and printed these.”

The blown up images were a little low quality but it shows the German police handing off their prisoners to military personnel. And even though image is too grainy, she can clearly make out that the military personnel have the US flag in their uniforms.

“US Military?”

Kurt nods his head, “Mr. Pym also noticed. I did digging and seems those planes are used by US military too.”

The Accords provides that individuals subject of the agreement will be apprehended and detained by UN Forces. These men are obviously not UN Forces.

“I am checking for faces in pictures to see if we get something from them.”

“That’s very thorough.”

“Mr. Pym suggested it.”

She looks at Hank who’s waiting for them to finish, “Of course he did.” She says in a low tone. Hank approaches them and Kurt leaves hurriedly when Hank gives him a look.

“So,” He starts and leans on the desk, “You up to speed?”

Hope nods her head, “Yeah.”

They’re going against the full might of the US Military. Probably. But they’re definitely going against the Secretary of State. And as a former general, Ross would certainly still have connections in the military.

Hank clasps his hands in front of him, scrutinizing her face. Her lips curl into a frown and she rubs her left temple, the gravity of the situation finally settling in.

“We’re fucked.” She says with a sigh.

He shrugs, “It’s just treason, maybe terrorism. If we get caught.”

Hope looks at her father, who gives her a small smile. She takes a deep breath as she leans on the chair, resting her elbow on the arm rest. She tucks her hand under her chin, “What do you really think?” she asks because he actually sounds optimistic. Hank Pym doesn’t do optimistic.

“I think it’s very risky.” Hank replies, almost immediately. “And I don’t want you to put yourself in this situation. Not for Scott. Not even for the suit.”

She remembers what Scott told her in her car, when she had walked out of the house, furious at Hank for not seeing her as someone more than capable of wearing the suit. Scott said it in a way that made her realize that he was seeing it from a father’s perspective. It was from that conversation where she understood that sometimes, fathers can sacrifice everything for their daughters. And that some fathers will sacrifice everything but their daughters.

She then thinks of Cassie, and how Scott risked everything – even his life – to prove that he deserves to be in his daughter’s life.

Then she thinks about his situation now.

“If the situation was reversed, Scott wouldn’t think twice to break me out.”

“Of course he wouldn’t think twice.” Hank replies with a snort, “The man’s in…” he trails off when he sees the bemused expression on her face.

She was supposed to ignore Hank’s comment; he’s being a bit more irreverent than usual. But the way he said it somewhat piqued her curiosity. He makes it sound like there’s… something. She can’t pinpoint what it is yet.

“He’s in what?” Hope asks, her head tilting slightly to the side as she studies Hank’s face.

“The man’s in a lot of trouble if he wouldn’t try to break you out.” he shrugs, “I’d kill him with my bare hands if he wouldn’t.”

Hope rolls her eyes (because yes, she has no doubt that if the situation was reversed, Hank will definitely do just that if there was even a hint of hesitation from Scott). She shifts in her chair and looks at Scott’s friends.

“Do those three know what they’re getting into?”

“They’re all onboard with whatever we come up with.”

It both awes her and terrifies her that Scott has friends who wouldn’t think twice about helping him, no matter what the circumstances. It awes her because she hasn’t met anyone who can inspire so much loyalty from people. And it terrifies her because the three of them will be in the most vulnerable position if this rescue fails.

“And they’re also scared of you, so there’s that.” Hank adds.

Hope scoffs (except yes, they are scared of her) and glances at the three men again.

“Are you sure you really want to do this?” Hank asks, after a while, breaking the silence between them.

She takes a deep breath and exhales slowly before looking at her father.

“Yes.”

He lets out a heavy sigh, “Give me a few days. Although it would help if we have more bugs on Ross.”

This time, it’s her turn to shrug, “So we put more bugs on Ross.” She says, as if it’s a very simple solution to a complicated problem.

“And when do you propose to do that?” he asks with a raised brow.

She’s due back in New York tomorrow and will not return home until the end of the week. Hank’s working on her wings, which means it might be ready by the end of the week, but she’s working on her suit’s stingers which won’t get any work done this week.

Although the real question is, does she really want to wait until the end of the week to do this? The old Ant-Man suit works properly, and although it doesn’t fit her well, she can use it to do the job,

“Tonight.”

There was a beat of silence.

But Hank seems to have expected her answer because he merely nods his head. “You should probably get some sleep before you leave for D.C. Wouldn’t want you to pass out while riding Marie Antoinette.”

And with that, their little meeting is finished. Hank motions for her to go (and do what he says) before asking Dave to check flights to Washington D.C.

Hope can hear the three men start to assign tasks to themselves as she makes her way to the elevator. The trip was short, and she makes her way inside the lab and goes straight to the cot in the corner of the room. She kicks off her shoes before reclining on the makeshift bed.

She falls asleep a few minutes after her head hits the pillow and dreams about Scott and the large, empty airport in Berlin.

~*~*~


She had at least three hours of sleep before she and the ants stowed on a plane to D.C. Most of the ants are wearing cameras for Hank so that there’s an extra pair of eyes to help with the navigation.

The plan is to replace the bug they put on Ross’ phone with a different one, which would work together with the device she’s going to put in his shoes (she brought enough for ten pairs). The two pieces of equipment emit an intermittent high frequency sound that imitates a bat’s bio sonar. It’ll enable Hank to reconstruct all the locations Ross goes to, which hopefully includes the Pentagon.

It’s straightforward: she goes inside the house, plant the bugs and then leave. A fifteen-minute job, more or less. However, the trip to DC takes five hours and the three-hour time difference between San Francisco and Washington means that when she reaches Ross’ residence, everybody in the house could be awake. She might not have considered the time difference between the two cities when she decided to this thing she’s about to do.

This might be one of her worst ideas ever.

(“Your mother volunteered for a SHIELD op that started like this.”

“Is that why you didn’t look surprised when I said I can do this tonight?”

“Yes.”

“What happened?”

“She got chased by a flock of birds.”

“Oh.”

“If it’s any consolation, that mission was a success. It just took her a few hours to get the birds to stop following her.”)


Pink and orange streaks escape from the darkness as the sun starts to rise. Ross’ neighborhood is still asleep, save for the secret service agents posted by the door of the Secretary’s house.

She and the ants enter the house through an open window on the second floor. The ants spread out immediately to help with the surveillance. She then climbs down from Marie Antoinette’s back to stand on the ledge to survey the room.

The first thing she sees is the humongous dog sleeping at the foot of the bed.

And then she sees the other one sleeping on the floor.

Then, a man snores.

The room with the open window is Secretary Ross’ bedroom and he has two dogs sleeping inside with him.

Theoretically, the plan was simple. And it would have been simple, if Ross didn’t have any dogs (or any pet that had been predators at some point in their evolutionary lives, for that matter). Not to mention the fact that all her encounters with the neighbors’ pets were anything but delightful. A tiny Chihuahua looks harmless when you’re normal-sized but it’s a different story all together when you’re smaller than an ant and that tiny Chihuahua bares their sharp fangs.

Hope can feel her chest tighten as her heart starts to race. The dogs are on the large side, capable of mauling an average-sized man and tearing their face off.

“The phone is on the bedside table.” Hank says. She peers from the ledge and sees it on the right side of the bed.

She swallows the ball of trepidation in her throat and squares her shoulders as she walks backwards. Marie Antoinette’s going to be benched for this— the dogs are asleep, but the moment they wake up (which is any time) and they see something flying, they’re going to be curious. And the last thing she needs is curious dogs, especially curious large dogs.

She takes several deep breaths to calm herself down. Go to the phone, install the bug. Go to the closet, install the bugs. Simple. She’s going to make this simple.

Hope starts to run and when she reaches the edge of the ledge, she jumps.

As she dives from the ledge, she focuses on minimizing the impact of her landing on the floor. She still hasn’t perfected landing on a freefall – and neither has Scott (but that’s beside the point because he’s not the one who’ll get chased by two dogs if there’s suddenly a small hole in the floor). She suddenly wishes that they had practice sessions with freefall landing.

When she feels her feet make contact with the floor, she maintains her momentum and rolls on her shoulders, skidding just a few inches away from the tail of the dog sleeping on the floor.

She freezes when she sees the tail twitch.

The dog doesn’t seem to have been awakened by her imperfect landing. She lets out a deep breath, one she didn’t know she was holding before slowly standing up and looking around. The dog asleep on the floor looks like a mountainous region made entirely out of coarse fur.

Hope cautiously watches it before running towards the table.

The floor was clutter-free, allowing her an unhampered sprint to the side table, and the climb up to the top was relatively easy; Scott took it upon himself to teach her the basics of parkour and she had supplemented his lessons with her training in wall climbing (which she also taught to Scott).

The phone was near the alarm clock. The clock’s ticking – barely noticeable to humans – sounds like drums beating on top of her head. This was one of the disadvantages of the old suit: aside from the lining being too light, the helmet can’t consistently protect its wearer from the disproportionate cacophony of sounds around them. And right now, she is simply too near the source of the sound for the helmet to shield her effectively from the sound waves.

Hope grits her teeth and works through the ticking. She turns the phone around and places the bug under the camera. The device, if not miniaturized, is smaller than a dime; after applying the Pym particle on it, it looks like a fleck of dust.

“Secured the—”

An earsplitting, high-pitched sound suddenly fills the room. Hope cries out in pain as she feels the sound of the alarm clock ripping through her, making her stagger towards the edge of the side table and falling to the floor.

Her head is throbbing and there’s a persistent ringing in her ears when she opens her eyes. She groans, tasting copper on her lips.

“Hope?”

She doesn’t answer Hank, not just yet. Hope focuses on breathing first, ignoring the headache, the dancing stars in front of her eyes, the buzzing in her ears, and the fact that her lips are bleeding. The alarm clock blares on but it now sounds like they’re coming from a distant place.

The sleeping inhabitants in the room begin to stir. Something on the surface begins to thump and she can feel the floor being scraped.

“Hope, are you okay?” she can hear the panic in her father’s tone but she’s not sure. The ringing in her ears hasn’t subsided yet.

“I’m fine.” She wheezes but stays put in her position. She fell in the space between the bed and the table and she’s pretty sure there’s going to be a dent on the floor where she landed.

“Mornin’ boys.” She hears Ross say. The bed shifts and she starts to hear the dogs buzzing excitedly.

Oh no.

Hope forces herself to roll farther towards the wall. The dogs have started to run around the room as they waited for Ross. The movements make her head start hurting again and her stomach roils, like she’s going to throw up any minute.

And, okay, she might have miscalculated the size of the dogs because one of them just crawled under the bed with little difficulty.

She stays incredibly still when the air around her begins to swirl, as the dog begin to sniff the floor, picking up her scent.

“Maybe you should get out from under the bed.” Hank suggests. She ignores him.

It might have been a stupid decision to stay lying down on the floor. Now, there’s a dog with a nose like a vacuum and it’s only a matter of time before she gets sucked towards the general direction of the dog’s mouth. At the same time, she can’t start moving now because that’s the easiest way to get to the dog’s mouth.

Her heart pounds painfully against her chest and she squeezes her eyes shut. She doesn’t want to hurt the dog (that was how the neighbor’s cat got her—she didn’t want to hurt it because, really, that wasn’t fair), but if she has to do it…

“Billy, what are you doing under there?”

The dog suddenly scrambles away from her to greet his owner, and Hope uses the distraction stand up and to quickly climb up, hiding behind the headboard.

She stays hidden while Ross talks to his dogs like a parent would a three-year old, while he shuffles about and makes his bed. This is the noisiest morning ruckus she has observed (but not the earliest— Scott wakes up at four in the morning to eat breakfast and then comes back to bed afterwards. It’s a habit he picked up in prison, she thinks, since Luis would also wake up at 4 AM to make breakfast).

“Who wants to go out for a run?”

The dogs bark excitedly, their paws scuttling about on the floor.

A few minutes later, the bedroom door opens with the dogs running out. Ross follows after them, closing the door behind him.

Hope waits for a few more minutes before climbing out of her hiding place.

The closet is to her right; she saw Ross take out his morning run clothes from there. She jumps onto the bed and bounces forward, landing on the floor with more grace than she did a while ago.

It takes her a little less than five minutes to finish the job. Ross owns five pairs of shoes, six if she counts the running shoes.

She calls Marie Antoinette when she’s done, and the ant gives her an affectionate nuzzle on the leg after landing.

Hope smiles and rubs the top of the ant’s head before climbing up her back.

“Let’s go home, Marie Antoinette.”

2/3