Dragon in Marvel

A Human Soul absorbs his universe, evolving into a dragon, after eons of traveling the void between Multiverses he finds the Marvel multiverse, where he is sent to a special universe (AU) by the One Above All, to act as its keeper (A test of sorts). Our dragon is morally grey but with a friendly disposition. Heavily Comedy Orientated. Not a Power Trip. Magic. Fluff. Kingdom Building. Beats Girls. Not an alpha protagonist. [I don't own Marvel, only the main character.] [I don't own the cover picture.] Word count as of Chapter 38: 309.49K I usually aim for 8k-word chapters, but you'll find some longer and some shorter.

ExistentialVoid · Anime & Comics
Not enough ratings
39 Chs

Which witch which did it was it?, Part 2.


I haven't been here since I met Boss Tribunal... Some say I was naked, I don't remember though, and since I can't forget then they must be mistaken... Yes, they are!

"Hello, Love."

"Hello, Noona Death."- I sent her my love.

"Oh, my!"- The second Noona said... Second Noona? There should be only one... Ah! It's Mistress Love... Let's use my All-Seeing eyes... Interesting, she doesn't truly have a true body like Noona does.

"Nice to meet you, Mistress Love."- I smiled at the Noona look-alike.

"The pleasure is mine, Aragorn. Your love is truly delicious... abnormal, obsessive, pure, dependent, uplifting, restricting, and freeing... thank you for the delicacy."- She licked her lips.

"Anytime!"- I said.

There's Noona, Eternity and Infinity, but those two are one so I count them as one individual, Boss Tribunal, and Oblivion... Oblivion is Noona's progenitor... That makes it my father-in-law... Right?

But their essence is not the same, his looks similar to mine, not to Noona's... Maybe Noona has daddy issues and that's why she liked me? That's what girls with daddy issues do, right? They look in a mate at the faults they experienced from their fathers.

*POP!* *POP!*- My eyeballs exploded...

"... Interesting... You didn't cease to exist upon witnessing me as I truly am!"- He said with a low rumble that quaked through Overspace.

"That's because you and I are similar, Father-in-Law. I guess my soul would have a similar facet to it if I ascend to a full-fledged Abstract Entity."- I said as I beheaded myself and grew another head.

"Mmmm, this one got wrecked."- I said while observing my old head, it's now all cracked, the origin of the cracks being my eyeholes.

I opened my mouth wide and ate my head. Waste not, want not. 

I looked up—because they were all silent—and I saw Noona facepalming, Boss Tribunal deadpanning, Mistress Love chuckling, and the Eternity duo looking at me wide-eyed. 

"... Father-in-law?"- Oblivion asks.

"Are you not Noona Death's progenitor?"- I cocked my head in confusion.

"... In a way..."- The way he said that seemed like he didn't want to voice it out.

"Hence you're her father... Ergo, my Father-in-law."- I nod my head in reassurance. My logic is flawless.

Father-in-law looks at Noona, and Noona nods in confirmation—see? Even your daughter acknowledges it—and then she kills my newly born head... ?... Huh?

I cut my neck below the place her concept 'killed' my regeneration and ate the chunk after growing another head.

"I shall have some sexual remuneration for that offense, Noona."- I declared. I would accept no less! I get going all tsundere about my interactions with her father and I understand wanting to shut me up, but she could have done so with her words and not by blasting my head off! Unacceptable!

"..."- Boss Tribunal.

"..."- Oblivion.

"..."- Eternity duo.

"..."- Noona.

"~Hehehehehe!~"-Mistress Love.

"*Sigh* Aragorn, for your services, what would you like as remuneration?"- Boss Tribunal asked.

"A heaven!"- I said.

"You can't claim ownership of a heaven without ascending to our ranks."- Eternity said.

"It's alright, I'll have one of my girls own it."- I explained.

"Love, why do you want a heaven?"- Tsundere Noona asked.

"A hell dimension will soon come into my possession, I want the matching pair. Then I would only be missing a limbo/purgatory so that I could create my own cycle of souls."- I'll most likely have Wanda and/or Agatha as the overseers—in case I don't find anyone more adequate.

"When the appropriate dimensional lords are selected you can return for the heaven dimension."- Boss Tribunal approved my request!

"Nice!"- I said. Now I just have to find some angels for my heaven.

"~You can return, Love. I'll see you later."- Noona winked.

I opened an astral path and returned to my universe. Should I give it a name?... Shinyverse... Dracoverse... Flufflyverse... Paradoxverse... Voidverse... Earth-69, well that one is already in use, same as Earth-42, and Earth-34, which were the numbers I liked... for reasons...

I'm not that good with names so I'll leave it at that for the moment.


The Crystal, Halo.


"The Fuck!"- Who dares to wake this dragon me up!

"Aragorn! I'm taking the Arcadia!"- This maniac cat! Doesn't she know it's 3 pm, my nap time?!

"Kitty... It's yours, why are you asking for permission?"- This crazy cat!

"Because I'm going to boost my piracy career by raiding some if not all of the Shi'ar's outposts!"-... What?

"Go on, Kitty. Don't let my incredulity and rightful nap time stop you, what else do you have?"

"For the past month, I've been getting a few reports from my contacts-"

"Since when do you have intergalactic contacts?"- Not even I have intergalactic contacts, the closest would be Stakar Ogord, but we have more of an employer-employee relationship. Oh! There's also Carol, but she doesn't count, she is a something of brute that only thinks about going through spaceships and battle.

"-and I finally was able to compile a comprehensive list of the outpost distribution of the Shi'ar. Getting hold of their forces' distribution is getting complicated, to the point that I need to raid a few places to collect information and resources."- She stood akimbo, pirate-outfitted.

"... Why?"- That's all I could ask.

"Because the information is safeguarded, I need to infiltrate and have Spark or Seraph hack it out!"

"Not that, idiot cat! Why are you taking a shot at the Shi'ar?"- I can't follow her thought process.

"Because they messed with one of mine! I know I can't defeat them, eradicate them, torture them, or destroy them—which I very much crave!—but I can hit them where it hurts! It's a humble start, but a start nonetheless. I'm not a patient cat, I can't wait a few years for Jean to master her powers! I demand retribution, vengeance, revenge, payback, vindication, and retaliation!"- Those are all the same but I understand.

"... Okay, do as you please but the lives of whoever you take with you are in your hands. You won't die, but remember that your friends are mortal, fragile, and squishable."- At least this way I will have a battlefield to send my maids to when they are bored.

"Yay! Thanks Aragorn! I love you lots!"- The cat jumped on me and straddled me in a hug.

"Yeah, yeah, I know."- 'I love you too.'

"By the way, I loaded a few planet busters into the Arcadia, is there a problem with that? Spark authorized it."- She means business!

"How many?"

"666."- Ok, that's not that many.

"Why that number?"

"Symbolism, of course! I'm bringing hell to their doorstep!"

"Just try not to take too many innocent lives, Kitty. I'm saying this for you, not for me or them. Promise?"- I lifted my pinky.

"... Promise."- She sealed the promise with her pinky.

"Good, then go on and deliver hell to their doorstep."- I flicked her nose and got up. 

"Bye then!"- The cat stormed out of my bedroom.

"Spark, send some of the combat bots with her."- Just in case.

"Acknowledged. I'll load 666 combat units to the Arcadia."- Spark seems to be riding Kitty's symbolism wave.

I was not napping because I was tired or lazy... well, usually the latter has something to do with my naps... I was running simulations of what a fight against the Council of Red would look like in my mindscape, based on the limited information I have from comics and what I've learned from observing Mephisto... I wouldn't lose, but a 68% loss of the solar system is the best outcome.

"How did it go?"- Spark asked.

"I can't win while protecting Earth, The Moon, Jupiter, and the Sun."- These are the celestial objects in the Solar System that enable life on Earth. With Jupiter acting like a vacuum cleaner of asteroids and The Moon taking charge of the tides and the tilt on the axis of the planet.

"What if you let go of Jupiter?"- Spark.

"If and when the gas giant is lost, the void in the gravitational pull it exerts over Earth would derail the orbit long enough for millions to die. I can fix just about any damage afterward but I doubt life on Earth can wait for me to do so."- Saturn would have a similar effect.

"What about using the Time and Space Stones to bubble the planet long enough to fix the damage?"- Spark's suggestion has some merit.

"That would be viable in the case that the point of entry is not Earth..."- I said.

"But with the Ghost Rider in their possession, it's easier to start the incursion from Earth, even with your presence here. So we would be left with erasing the Ghost Rider, casting him Off-World, or imprisoning him in a separate dimension..."- Spark said.

"Right... But what are the chances that we could find him before he finds a way to invite the Council into our world?"- I asked.

"We are not that lucky, Master Chief... What about leaving The Moon and Earth's protection to me and taking care of only Jupiter and the Sun?"- Spark.

"That means you would use the defense system projection of the ring, right?"- That's also a possibility.

"Correct. The downside is that you would have to take care of the aftermath since the ring would be for all to see once the shielding expands to cover both celestial objects."- Earth and the Inhumans would discover my Halo.

"All things considered, that's not such a catastrophic option, is it?"- I comment.

"No, it isn't. But this would only work if you find a way to expel the invasion from Earth."- Spark.

"... Yes, I would have to leave Agatha and Yao to deal with the ones I might not be able to expel, but it's viable."

"Master Chief, assuming that what's limiting them right now is access to a passage to our universe, how long do you think it would take them to build one?"- Spark inquires.

"At the moment it's safe to say that their only link to this place is the Ghost Rider. He isn't enough to open a way for a limitless number of Mephistos to come through, meaning that he would need to gather subordinates and find a source of energy big enough to pierce the dimensional walls I reinforced—or enough sacrificial souls—maybe 8 months to a year."- I concluded.

"That long because he can't act out and call for your attention... How many energy sources do we know that could be used?"- Spark asked.

"Any of the Infinity Gems, Cosmic Cubes, Gods, Dimensional Lords, and a few of the empowered or powered individuals of the beyond Omega level..."- That's more than I'd like.

"Obviously the more energy-rich the source, the longer the path will be opened... Until the Council of Red can sustain the path from their end, then there would be no closing it."- I add.

"I'll add a few more satellites to our SatNet and have Seraph help me monitor the planet."- Spark said.

I jumped to Re-Nazca—the treehouse—as I thought about my latest predicament...

Sometimes I have a feeling that turning every human into a High-Human would help me in the long run... If they were a bit more resilient as a species I wouldn't have to worry about so many variables, and they wouldn't die from simple gravitational waves with an amplitude of 20Gs, or just because the temperature fluctuated from the Antarctica level to the Lut Desert level in a minute, or because the planet's rotation sped up by a percentage in a second—all of which are very possible consequences of a fight against infinite Mephistos—but then I remember that their species is plagued by scum and I no longer feel the need to empower them... Not empowering scum is the basis of a happy life.

"Gaea, my favorite goddess."- I greeted.

"... That's not a good look on your face."- She opens her arms waiting for my hug.

I hugged her and lifted her to my lap as I sat.

"How many of your children do you know that would try to take advantage of a situation that could imply the end of the universe?"- I ask.

"..."- She looks away.

"Now, that's not a good look on your face."- I tease back.

She chuckled at my jab. I placed a hand on her belly and fed my growing baby with my energy.

"*Sigh*... We might be having an incursion from a grouping of Mephistos in the future, aside from all the variables I have to worry about during my fight against them, your kids add another layer of complexity to my suffering."- I rest my chin on her head.

"... I will give you a representational 'sorry' since it's not my fault but I feel partially responsible... Sorry... On another note, how can I help you?"- She said.

"It's alright, Gaea. Just tell me about their personalities, so I can know what to expect."- I wouldn't put it past some of them to sacrifice themselves to power the path for the council.

I'm a very sane dragon, I can't figure out how the crazy think. That's beyond me!

... But I can imagine that if one has a grand view of one's worth coupled with a low intellect, I wouldn't put past them to be manipulated. Or if they are tired of their lives they might want to go out with a Bang!... Or if they are drowned in the waters of revenge they might not care about their lives... Or if they underestimate who they are dealing with they might easily fall into a trap... Or if they are trapped in an inescapable situation—like I once was—they might be force to make the ultimate sacrifice...

"I can help you with that, Dear. Let's see, with who shall we start?"- I enjoyed my baby's presence and Gaea's as I listened to her ramble about how shitty 90% of her kids are—especially the Greek.


Malibu, California.

Stark's Workshop.

"Hey, Seraph. How is it going with Krakoa?"- Aragorn looks up from her lap and asks.

"Mmmm... Good?"- She cocks her head in confusion.

"Why is it a question though?"- Aragorn asks.

"It's because I thought you were keeping up with the reports, Father."- Seraph said while tracing her fingers along his scalp and stealthily analyzing the composition of his translucent hair.

"I am, but you normally make those impersonal, so I don't have a clear picture of what's going on—socially speaking. I want to know how your life is going over there, how much they hate me after I killed Xavier, how is the average Krakoan living their life, how are the humans mixed in the basket treated, stuff like that, which usually doesn't make it to the reports."- Aragorn explained.

"And you have to do this in my place?"- A very annoyed Playboy asked, he was running tests and simulations on the new element he and Seraph created and matching the energy output and latent energy recharge of the Arc Reactor.

It was hard for him that his achievements were being underappreciated. Very Hard! While it's true that Seraph helped—and her assistance was invaluable—most of the bulk was undertaken by him, and now these two are relaxing while floating around his lab/workshop talking about stuff that was not him! How dare they?... Or at least that's how he saw it.

"Mmmm..."- Aragorn muttered as he observed Stark and the reactor with palpable concentration. 

"What?! This is mine! I won't share!"- Stark protectively stood in front of the toy.

"*Sigh* You're clean of your psychological dependency on alcohol—or about as clean as a recovered alcoholic can get—you can start your practical studies in sorcery."- Aragorn nodded to Seraph, which brought a warm smile to her face, and pride to the Playboy.

"And I was not trying to steal your precious, you and Seraph went directly to the optimized model, you need to make a downgraded version for 'public consumption'—I recommend Palladium—or you can take charge of the engine production market, and black-box the technology pertaining the Arc reactor."- Aragorn had expected them to stumble from the first generation Palladium-cored reactor to the final product, they didn't, they ended with the peak model in one step.

Maybe he underestimated his daughter's capabilities, or at least he thought that much while completely underrating Stark's contributions... let it be known that if Aragorn is one thing, that is petty, if a second word was needed to describe him then nepotism would do.

"Why can't Stark Industries eat whole the space-craft production market?"- Stark asked.

"Money. I don't think the investors and board would like it if we suddenly stopped our weapons manufacturing branch and went towards space exploration, we are no longer in the Cold War era, and space exploration is not the next thing."- Seraph said.

"So I either create the engine and black-box it or I sell a downgraded product..."- Stark said, but he mostly talked for himself.

"I think we should try both routes... we make a very downgraded engine version and market it as the replacement of the 'old' combustion engine—like what you're doing with solar power and your batteries—and from the data we get from these engines we use it as a base for the 'SpaceAble' engine."- Stark looked up to his partner in crime for confirmation—Seraph.

"That works, Tony. But you'll have to level up your security. Ever since Father declared economic war on the oil industry he is visited at least twice a day by their representatives."- Seraph said, she was not having any luck deciphering the atomic composition of her Father's hair. It didn't even appear to be made of atoms!

"Ah? Just have the lawyers deal with them?"- Stark asked.

"She means assassins. Oddly enough, Pharma has been fiercer ever since they got wind of my clinical trials."- Aragorn joked seriously.

"... Okay, I'll have Seraph help me with that."- Stark, by now, was used to receiving help from what could be considered his best female friend... Virginia Potts was a touchy topic for him ever since he saw her and Happy Hogan on a date.

It's not that that meant he no longer considered her his friend, it's that out of the feelings that blossomed from the sight, he discovered that he was—possibly—interested in her, but now it was too late. Or so he believed...

"Anyway, Father. The council hates you but the average X-Man doesn't hate you. Obviously, the citizens don't know about the incident, and since in the 'General Krakoan Info, Book 1' you're mentioned as the driving force behind the founding of Krakoa, you're well-liked."- Seraph showed him a holographic copy of the book.

She speed-scrolled it in front of Aragorn and he read it all in less than 3 seconds—efficiency expected only of this father-daughter duo.

"There were some initial cases of unconscious and targeted discrimination towards the non-mutant, but that was squashed fiercely by Councilwoman Moira McTaggart. I made some subtle changes and started a humble but effective campaign to remove most of this unconscious hate, it worked wonders, also recently—according to my readings—the average Krakoan made it to the top ten of the happiest citizens in the world."- Seraph beamed a smile.

"And I think that's where you want to be, considering the top 5 usually belong to fascists, communists, dictatorships, or theocratic states where the surveys are manipulated!"- Stark quipped.

"And about my life over there... Hank is a cool friend, Rogue and Remy are fun to be around, and I've made great progress with Douglas Ramsey, he's great! I believe the only reason he is not at my level in coding is that his fingers, eyes, and mind can't keep up with me, but at the level of mastery, he is amazing! Forge is a funny guy but he usually loses focus whenever he sees my body—not in a sexual way of course—and I'm like an older sister to most of the kids I train."- Seraph explained as she showed some holograms of her friends and a few live feeds.

She had several pictures of her and the trainees having fun... most were of her trashing them around while she trained them.

"Is it hard on them? The missions I mean."- Aragorn asked, showing a rare moment of caring about someone else who was not Haloan.

"At first it was, I had Jean help them in the mental health department, but now they are doing better. From time to time we do have a couple of them breaking down, some labs are worse than others, but these events are not as recurrent as they once were. By the way, Father, when should we tell the council about Genosha?"- Seraph projected a live satellite feed of the mass graves filled with mutants and humans alike, the public executions, and the overall everyday life of a citizen of Genosha.

"What the FUCK!?"- Stark shouted, enraged.

"When you think they are ready enough to storm the island and escape with the victims without getting caught in the nuclear explosion."- Aragorn commented, his eyes shifted from gold to red.

"Does Genosha have nuclear weapons?"- Stark asked, shocked.

Genosha was publicly known as a small island country—insignificant, in cruder words—not the type of place you expect to find atomic fission weaponry.

"Yes, my newly acquired dark priestess informed me about it. I was also surprised..."- Aragorn commented.

"I will keep gathering info, with the appropriate plan we might be able to crack this place down."- Seraph said with a fierce frown—one endearing enough to change Aragorn's eyes to pink.

"I can help! You don't need to pay me, just invite me to an outing in the country you run!"- Stark eagerly said to Seraph... He wanted to say a 'date' but he was smart enough to avoid Aragorn's ire.

"You can?"- Aragorn arched an eyebrow in questioning.

"With this!"- Stark selected a file in his holographic screen and then tossed it like a paper ball to Aragorn.

Aragorn opened it and in it—displayed tridimensionally—rested the initial blueprints of an Ironman suit. Differently from what he expected to see as his first suit, this one looked like the Model 33 of the comic versions of Ironman.

"This... Where did you get the inspiration for this?"- Aragorn couldn't understand, Stark was not captive in a cave and he was not kidnapped—as long as you don't count Seraph's parent-helicoptering of him—so there was no reason for Stark to follow on his 'predestinated' hero path.

Stark didn't answer but looked to the left, there—in a display cabinet—could be found a set of small figurines...

"Is that Warhammer 40k?!"- Aragorn exclaimed. The last time he saw one of these was in his father's collection. About a few googolplexes of years ago.

"Yep! 3rd edition! Actually... Seraph said you have an excess of Vibranium... Could you cast a set of these for me? In Vabranium, of course."- Stark asked, unabashed by the opulence of his request.

"That's what you wanna ask? You want vibranium for that?"- Aragorn asked, doubt overflowing.

"Yeah, I'll get myself a Vibranium asteroid sooner or later—Seraph is already working on making a reservation for one asteroid for me with your queen—I rather have a sample for my collectibles first."- Stark affirmed, leaving Aragorn baffled.

"... This reminds me of my father. He was not a man of many luxuries, he cared not for cars, watches, smartphones, or any of the usual vices, except for his collection. He didn't limit his hobby to Warhammer, he collected anything he deemed 'Manly'. Katanas, swords, blades, lighters, cowboy buckles—even if he wasn't a cowboy—flasks, hats, caps, the list may go on."- Aragorn floated the figurines to his face, he observed them in remembrance, and with a flick of his wrist a blob of Vibranium appeared, a second later he had a set of Warhammer 40K third edition cast in solid vibranium.

"You were never a fan, Father?"- Seraph asked.

"Not exactly a fan. I liked the lore, I read some of the stuff, and I loved the character of The Emperor, but I was not really a fan, I just liked it, but not as much as liked my comics."- Aragorn answered while doing the final quality checks on the metal figurines.

"WAIT! You had a father? You were human?!"- Stark shouted.

"You can ask Seraph at another time. These are yours, consider it a gift from Seraph and not mine, I don't give gifts to people I don't like!"- Aragorn levitated the new set to Stark while he placed the original back in its place.

"Nobody likes a tsundere old man."- Stark said... Just before he was killed with a lightning zap.

Rest in peace... This time he was not smart enough to avoid Aragorn's anger.

"... Father, I had to reinforce his nervous, cardiovascular, and muscular systems because of that."- Seraph sighed, she stopped petting Aragorn and floated down to resurrect her friend.

"Are you sure it's not because you kept zapping him through that collar?"- Aragorn smiled wickedly and pointed at the Link that rested on his neck.

"... Potato Potahto?"- She said, a tender smile adorning her face just before she zapped Stark.

*ZAP!* *GASP!*

"God! I hate that!"- Stark exclaimed. He stood up like nothing happened and then resumed his admiration of the new set.

"..."- Aragorn found his reaction tragically funny.

"... Sometimes I worry."- Seraph commented.

"Don't worry that much, it's not worth it."- Aragorn said in a dismissive tone. 

'Aragorn.'- Jean called to him through their connection.

'What's up, Firebird?'

'Are you busy?'

'Not really, chilling with Seraph, mocking Stark, the usual.'

'I'm going there.'

"Jean is coming over."- Aragorn said.

"That's the redhead girl, right?"- Stark asked.

"Yes."- Seraph confirmed. Jean wasn't the only one who fit that description in Halo, but she was the one who left the biggest impression on him since Seraph mentioned that she was in the top 5 of strength of the planet.

A portal of orange sparks opened up, smack dab in the lab, and the angsty teenager came out.

She looked up at the floating dragon, hugged and kissed Seraph in greeting—a handshake for Stark—and floated to Aragorn. She laid atop him and rested her head on his chest.

'...I'm sad.'- Jean.

'I can feel it.'- Aragorn.


'Is it about your butler?'

'Yes, what gave me away?'- Jean.

'He didn't come with you... and I've seen how you flinch every time you look at his soul.'- Aragorn explained.

'How do you know I look at his soul? It's not like my eyes light up or something.'- Jean asked.

'They don't but your soul reacts.'- Aragorn.

'What? Just because I looked at his soul?'- Jean asked with concern.

'Not because you looked at his soul, but because you looked at a Soul. Our eyes don't only see spirits—which are different than Souls but similar—we also see Souls. Anybody can see spirits, but not many can see Souls. Although the resulting tell of seeing a soul is minimal, your soul is one that I know very well, so I can tell when it reacts after you look at a soul.'

A spirit was similar to the astral representation of a person, a mix of the Mind and the Soul. Any sorcerer could see spirits, but only the privileged few could see Souls, the rawest state of a being.

'Then... should I stop?'- Jean questioned.

'Not really, unless you are seeing a soul like mine there are no lasting problems. Think about it as something similar to facial expressions, but 'soul expressions' in this case.'

'Is that why I can't see your soul? You don't let me?'- She asked.

'You already have enough on your plate, there's no need to add madness to your teen angst.'- Aragorn said, mocking her and being serious at the same amount.

'... That's good, but it doesn't help with my feelings.'- Jean said, downcasted.

'Let me guess... You want him to disappear from your life, yet you don't want him to die. You hate waking up every morning and seeing Xavier's soul in the body of Hart while he is being all butlery and gentlemanly to you. You appreciate the help he gives you but whenever you feel something positive about him you remember how Xavier treated you and how you almost lost your life due to him—in more ways than one.'- Aragorn passed his left arm over her waist, resting it in her lower back, and combed her hair with his right.

Jean listened to his heartbeat—which he didn't have a use for—as she rested her head on his chest.

'You feel disgusted when you see him living his life as a new person while so many lost theirs because of him, you feel like his punishment should have been harder, but then you are reminded that you also had a part in the tragedy and that ego-death is worse for a telepath than for one who is not.'- Aragorn wiped a tear from her face.

'You find yourself in a constant battle between all the guilt that you feel, the guilt that he doesn't feel because he considers himself a different person than Xavier, and the fact that you don't fully accept that you should be blamed for the tragedy, given that in a way you were also a victim, yet since your role as Senior Sister's host demands it, you can't shrink your 'responsibility'.'- Aragorn sent her tenderness through their connection and embrace.

'Did you read my feelings?'- Jean asked, not upset, but curious.

'I did not. But this is what Senior Sister was aiming for.'- Aragorn said.

'Why?!'- Jean asked, resentful.

'Mmmm... I can't speak for her, but it's easier to learn a lesson when it's accompanied by emotional distress. In a way, she succeded already... You are no longer as naive and innocent as before this ordeal, are you?'- Aragorn believed that even with all of the sadism that accompanied Phoenix she was not vile, she was neutral to most things and this was her way of raising a competent host.

'... I still don't like it.'- Jean said.

'You don't have to. It's a shitty situation, it's alright to hate it. You can keep sobbing in my chest all you want, just be ready for the bullying afterward.'- Aragorn teased.

'Shut up!'- Jean kept 'talking' and after a few minutes, both fell into a comfortable sleep and went to play in Aragorn's mindscape.

Aragorn was debating about including her in his fight against Mephistopheles, but since he wasn't sure about it he chose to only train her for it... just in case.

"Tell me, Seraph. Why did that girl just come to sleep in my workshop? This was supposed to be my place. Now your family comes and goes as if this were a convenience store!"- Stark complained.

"Eeehhh... Don't be a sourpuss, Tony. She is going through something."- Seraph looked away.

She knew that her family was not one to respect most boundaries.

"Everybody is going through something! I'm going through something! But this was my place! You don't see me invading your place, do you?"- Stark said, 'aggrieved' with the invasion of his safe space.

"Fine, fine! Stop whining! Tell me what you want! There's no need for this tantrum!"- Seraph understood well enough her friend to know what really bothered him.

"~Glad we are on the same page! Help me build my powered armor!"- Stark beamed a smile.

"That's no problem, I'll help, gladly. But we need to make it sleeker and smaller, you're not a space marine, if what you want is a powered armor and not a mecha then you should be able to wear it, not ride it."- Seraph projected a revised version of the armor Stark initially designed.

"Yeah, I know. That was just a conceptual model, I don't plan to move into the mecha market until a few iterations of my armor."- Stark conceded and the two focused on the new design.

"We should add a few more reactors..."- Seraph commented.

"Isn't one enough?"- Stark asked, pondering about the over-the-top way of thinking of Seraph.

"Nope! It's better to have extra energy than to find yourself lacking. More is the way!"- Seraph followed her argument with a projection of an octo-nucleus—a nucleus made of eight Arc Reactors—placed in an octahedron array.

"Whoah! Slow down, you demolition enthusiast! Are you trying to make me take down the country with me in an apocalyptic explosion? There exists a concept such as 'too much', and this is definitely it!"- Stark exclaimed.

"Tony, Tony, Tony! *Tsk* *Tsk* *Tsk* If you want to play in my league, this is the bare minimum!"- Seraph said in a haughty manner.

"And remember that we will start your practicals in magic soon. With a source of energy and sorcery, you could do wonders, so an octo-nucleus it is!"- Seraph really did think that this was the minimum acceptable. She was also considering requesting some special metals from her father.

"... Really? I believe an octahedron core is a bit excessive."- Stark asked, doubtful about the need to integrate the equivalent of an apocalyptic nuclear bomb into his armor.

"Really."- Seraph said with a nod.

"Fine! But once I learn how to, I plan to enchant about a thousand security features into the armor. I don't plan to die to one of my inventions!"- Stark agreed.

"That was always the plan, Tony. Pepper would kill me if something happened to you."- Seraph said the last part under her breath.

Well into their planning and designing another portal opened in the room, and Elara (Bucky's faerie wife) came through. 

"Sorry about the intrusion, Mr. Stark!"- She said with a smile that showcased how sorry she was not.

"See what I mean!"- Stark complained to Seraph.

"Hi, Elara! What brings you here?"- Seraph waved to the fairy and floated to her to receive her greeting hug.

"Hi, princess! I came to show my Lord the finished samples of our uniform."- She answered as she hugged and petted the blue AI.

"I didn't know the uniform was being changed."- Aragorn said, he and Jean woke up when they felt the portal opening.

"Eh, I did it on my own accord! But I did get the girls' approval."- She enthusiastically explained. 

Elara was a girl who had an artistic flare for armor and clothing. This came naturally to her, and a constant concern for her was that their uniform had been the same ever since she joined her lord's household.

"Alright, show me what you've got."- Aragorn said, with clear interest.

Elara smiled and changed her uniform—with a tap—into the samples she had previously designed.

Seraph and Stark paused their work and joined Jean and Aragorn in the fun, to spectate the improvised one-fairy fashion show.

She changed outfits with a tap and did a few spins to display her work. About an hour later, after going through the entire collection Aragorn asked:

"And you said the girls approved of these?"- With clear doubt in his face.

"Yes, my Lord. The Queen also approved the collection, we are missing only your approval, my Lord."- She smiled, pride apparent in the completion of this personal project.

"... You did well, Elara. But how did you manage to get them behind the short skirt upgrade? I had to fight them off my back for simply suggesting it."- Aragorn complained.

"I even went as far as to design some comfortable footwear for the uniform, are you certain they agreed to wear these high heels as their work footwear?"- Aragorn inquired.

"Not to mention that some of those getups looked like the sinful child of a dominatrix outfit, a Tron skin suit, and a maid costume."- Stark said about the general aesthetic of the collection Elara presented.


Aragorn didn't explicitly say it, but he agreed with the crude image Stark painted.

"My Lord, was this after the time when you first met?"- Elara inquisitively asked.

"Yes, when I first gave them the job."- Aragorn assented. 

"I think that was the problem—especially if this was before you bestowed upon them their psionic powers—at that time the trust you shared was possibly superficial."- Elara concluded.

It was different in her case. Her people sent her to Aragorn hoping he would take her as his concubine. If Aragorn had suggested a more revealing outfit during their initial encounter, she would have accepted—not that her culture cared about revealing skin or not. The widows came into Halo under different circumstances and with their own baggage. 

"That..."- Aragorn was speechless.

"Hahaha! Old man, she's got you there!"- Of course, Stark was zapped dead and brought back to life for his comment, but he regretted nothing.

"Leaving aside Tony's unapproved familiarity with you, Father. He has a point, that was a bit insensitive of you."- Seraph chuckled a little.

"... Maybe...But I saw it as a work uniform, not as me instructing them to please me with some racy outfit... I just didn't think about the sexual connotation of it, I simply thought they would look pretty in a short skirt... Like when you dress up a doll, you're not horny about the doll, you're appreciating the visual beauty of it."- Aragorn tried to explain.

"Aren't they more attractive because of the legs they show, hence 'prettier'? Sounds very sexual to me."- Jean asked, genuinely curious.

"Not exactly. It can be as you said, but it can also be entirely non-sexual. Like when I see Elara's stunning wings."- Aragorn motioned at the sky-blue butterfly wings on Elara's back.

"My wings, my lord?"- Elara asked with a smile, pleased with the compliment.

"Yes. They are beautiful, I like them. But I'm not liking them in a sexual way."- Aragorn said.

"But that's different, there's nothing sexual about wings."- Jean countered.

"...Emmm, Jean... In my culture wings have the equivalent sexual appeal as breasts have in Earth's."- Elara explained.

"That's what I mean, Padawan. Sexual appeal is recognized as such because of the social implications it was born from. But my comment could be considered sexual harassment in Elara's culture, it's simply a matter of perspective."- Aragorn said.

"There's also a biological aspect to it, but nowadays it's not that impactful as it once was—according to Spark's study of humanity's sexual conducts."- Seraph added.

"... I'm confused."- Jean confessed.

"Like when you see a woman wearing a beautiful wine velvet tight dress. There's a sexual part to the attraction but there's also an aesthetic part to it. He is saying that although it's true that the short skirt would've looked sexier, he was seeking it for its aesthetic contribution to their looks."- Stark explained to Jean as best as he could.

He also, sometimes, enjoyed visual beauty... Even if no one would believe him.

"... So it's something that without a clear explanation it could've been taken in either way, but Aragorn was after the visually pleasing aspect of the short skirt."- Jean concluded.

"Yes, Firebird. The only one of you that I've ever felt any form of sexual attraction was Emma. Other than her, the role you play in my life is not one where there could ever be sexual tension between us, but you should know that by now, given that we share most of our emotions and such."- Aragorn said.

"""Emma?!"""- Jean, Seraph, and Elara exclaimed.

"Yes. It's not strange considering she physically resembles my late mother."- Aragorn said with a nod.

"*Ugh* I know what you're talking about, but please stop it. I almost vomited."- Stark complained with a hand over his mouth, like trying to keep his stomach's contents inside.

"Oedipus complex?"- Seraph asked, skeptical about her father experiencing a psychological complex so humanly normal.

"When my coreself made me, he copied as much as he could from our past human self into me, some traumas and psychological complexes came through with the rest. I eventually got rid of it—because I didn't want Noona killing Emma for no real reason—but it was a part of me and, as I'm sure Stark can agree, the Oedipus and Electra complexes are a fundamental part of humanity."- Aragorn patiently explained.

The girls in the room—Jean and Seraph—looked curiously at the playboy.

"I really don't want to continue talking about this, but the Old Man is correct. We tend to look in our women for traits of our mothers. It's not exactly unhealthy, and it has a very understandable explanation to it, and the same could be said about women, that's where the daddy issues come from."- Stark said while trying to overcome his disgust.

"What's the explanation?"- Seraph asked, her curiosity taking hold of the reigns.

"I would like to know as well, Mr. Stark. Human behavior is very different from that of my species and the Haloans. We usually care more about wings and magical might than traits similar to our parents."- Elara added.

"... *Sigh* So the explanation that my psychologist once gave, goes like this: If you reach the age of sexual exploration it means that you succeeded and were able to survive your 'childhood'—the period when humans are most vulnerable aside from old age—this implies that no matter the faults of your parents they did something right to get you where you are—biologically speaking."

"It doesn't matter if they were abusive parents, drunks, hateful bitches, or whatever else comes to mind. In the eyes of 'Life' they did right since you're alive and fertile. So, your subconscious mind will look for the things that led to this 'successful' result in your targets of sexual attraction. This could go from physical appearance to personality, habits, conduct, or anything else—no matter how small—that your subconscious could associate with this 'success'."- Stark concluded. He lost some of the sparkles in his eyes after this explanation.

"In my case, my mother was a tall, blonde, attractive, blue-eyed woman. She had a big bust and decent hips. Very much like Emma. I'm guessing that in Stark's case, Virginia's personality reminds him of how his mother used to take care of Howard Stark."- Aragorn added.

"Ugh! I hate how receptive you all are to emotions, no one can have privacy in the sanctity of their hearts when you are around. Please don't get me involved in this, Old Man. Besides, I thought you and your lady had a weird thing going on with Gaea, not with your queen."- Stark tried to remove the image of his mother from his mind and move on with the conversation.

"Gaea... Not really, but you're not entirely wrong..."- Aragorn said evasively.

"What!?"- Seraph shouted with surprise and unbridled curiosity in her face.

"So there was something going on!"- Stark exclaimed after having his suspicions confirmed. He knew he had a sixth sense for this stuff!

"... It's complicated... Hard to explain."- Aragorn said.

"Come on, Father! Tell me more!"- Seraph demanded.

"Noona, can you help me explain this part?"- Aragorn asked after capitulating to Seraph's insistence.

"~Sure, Love."- She appeared hanging onto Aragorn's neck from behind, her face resting on his left shoulder.

"Good afternoon, Madame."- Elara greeted.

"Hello, Butterfly. I liked the new dresses."- Death squinted her eyes in joy at her faerie maid.

"Hi, Mom!"- Seraph floated to her parents and kissed her mother's cheek. She then laid down on Aragorn's lap and enjoyed the petting from both her parents.

"Death."- Jean said and rested her head next to hers.

"Hi, Jean. I'm glad your mood is better."- Death caressed Jean's cheek with her free hand. 

Sometimes she looks back at how her dragon got her involved with these many daughter-like figures. She doesn't complain, but that's only because she sought advice from many of the souls who experienced motherhood from her realm.

"Let's see, how to explain this in human terms... To us—my dragon and me—we experience sexuality differently when compared to the mortal ways... I'm attracted to Aragorn, his self, not only his body. He could be a male, female, animal, object, hermaphrodite, energy construct or matter aggregation, whatever you can think and I would still sexually love him."- Death said with a beaming smile.

"And it's the same for me, Noona could be a man, woman, animal, celestial object, fragment of reality or piece of inexistence, and I would always sexually love her."- Aragorn said with a nod.

"So you are bisexual? pansexual? objectophiles?"- Jean asked in confusion, Stark was thankful that she asked what he was thinking.

"No, that's too broad, I'm not attracted to men or women—not exactly at least—I'm attracted to Aragorn and he is attracted to me. We have our preferences, like how Aragorn prefers my female appearance and how I prefer his male appearance, but—ultimately—whatever shape or form the other takes, we will be attracted to it."- Death clarified.

"Then comes Gaea. We are attracted to her almost to the romantic level, but not there... yet."- Death said.

"Same as how I sometimes think of taking a 'bite' of her chocolate, Noona does as well. But, nonetheless, we are not romantically involved."- Aragorn said.

"We tease her, bite her, tickle her, but never cross a certain line."- Death said, at which Aragorn nodded.

"Which is why we are at an impasse regarding her. We could be considered Aragornsexual—in my case—and Noonasexual—in his case—yet here we are both discovering sexual attraction towards someone else..."- Death followed after Aragorn.

"Which shouldn't be possible based on what you said!"- Stark exclaimed after figuring out why both were so vague with the topic.

"Yes, Ironchild. It could be that this is the case because she is carrying a seed that greatly resembles me and my dragon—meaning that we would feel attracted to the energy of the other we recognize in the seed—but that shouldn't be the only reason."- Death said, leaving Stark confused about the nickname.

"The fact that both of us discovered this attraction is also confusing. It would make sense if only one of us did, but we started developing this attraction around the same time, so it's unexpected."- Aragorn added.

He believes that Death would normally be more inclined to fall for Gaea, given that one is the Abstract of Death and the other the strongest All-Mother in existence, opposites attract each other.

"Why not pursue Gaea and if things don't work out you separate? I think my parents are mature enough to take this approach, right?"- Seraph asked, curiosity abound and sparkles visible in her eyes.

To her statement, both of them looked away, trying to throw the responsibility of answering their daughter's question to the other.

"Pff!~Hehehe! Seraph, I know the answer."- Jean chuckled, seeing their reaction she couldn't hold it in.

"Can you tell us, Jean? Don't leave us like this!"- Elara demanded, not every day could she gossip about the leading figures of her new family.

"They are obsessive and hyperfixated in their targets of affection. To them, it is all in or all out."- Jean knew this due to the excessive—almost unhealthy—amount of time she spent in Aragorn's mind.

If there was something she could brag about, it was how well she understood and knew Aragorn, the perks of having easy access to his mind.

"... Meaning?"- Seraph asked, not understanding what she meant.

"Meaning that they are yanderes."- Stark said, mirth overflowing.

"...*Sigh* They are right, Seraph."- Aragorn affirmed, to the expectant look his daughter gave them.

"I'm always following—from my realm—your Father with one of my instances."- Death commented, a blush decorated her face.

"I have eyes bellow my skin, always pointing at Noona."- Aragorn showed them how new eyes bulged out from under his skin in his hands and face, and then blinked out below it, going back to his usual two-eyed self.

"Hahahah! That's not all, Seraph. He and Spark are always monitoring around us."- Jean laughed and shared some of the discoveries she had made from his mindscape.

"Really, Father?"- Seraph asked, a smile filled with love on her face.

"Ahem!... Yes, Spark and I are normally not far behind you, making sure there are no problems you couldn't handle by yourselves."- Aragorn confessed and petted the girl.

"They are not the only ones, Love. I always have my valkyries spy on you girls. It's not that we don't trust you, it's that we don't trust the universe!"- Death hurriedly explained.

"Mo~om, I don't know what reaction you expected but I feel happy knowing you two care so much about us."- Seraph innocently said.

"I bet that's not what they were expecting."- Stark couldn't believe his eyes. Not to be mistaken, Stark knew very well not to measure these people with his standards, but even he can be rightfully terrified at this piece of information. 

This meant that when he dealt with his friend, these two psychos were always not so far behind her...

"I agree, were it not for the flaming cosmic bird that peeps at me constantly, and the premium subscription Aragorn has to my mind, I would have been weirded out when I saw all the memories he had of me."- Jean said.

"I don't know about the bird, but I can agree with you..."- Stark said, some cold sweat making its way down his back.

"Don't worry too much. At least for Aragorn, he only observes the area around us."- Jean saw through the unspoken concerns of Stark.

"*Si~~~~igh* Thanks girl, I was about to have my lawyers update my will."- Stark released the longest sigh of his life.

"So what do you plan to do?"- Elara asked.

Aragorn and Death looked at each other and said:

"Nothing."- With a smile.

"Nothing?"- Elara asked, not masking her disappointment.

"Yes, Butterfly. There's no need to do anything."- Death said, as she enjoyed the incredulity in the maid's face.

"If there's anything the three of us have, it's time. Why would we take a rushed decision when we can wait and see how things play out?"- Aragorn added, he clearly never in his eldritch life has taken a rushed decision, nothing like instantly deciding to impregnate a stranger and in consequence marrying his crush, he would never, nor would Death!

"And our Gaea is aware of what we are doing so no one is going to be hurt because we decided to take our time, what's a decade or a millennium more or less?"- Death added.

"... The way you work is incomprehensible to me."- Stark said. He could barely hold on to the feeling of emotional attraction for a few months, and here these psychos were talking about waiting decades, and that was the smallest timeframe.

"That's why I said that this was the most accurate human explanation we could concoct. But we process feelings differently. Jean here can say."- Death lovingly placed a hand on top of Jean's head.

The others looked at Jean, awaiting her contribution to the conversation.

"Mmmm, Like Death said, it's hard to explain, but Aragorn sees romantic love as a merger of selves. He offers a 'chunk' of him in exchange for a 'chunk' of her, and then they mix these 'chunks' and... 'poison'(?) themselves with the resulting mix. It's like they are trying to obsessively mix themselves with a part of the other while conserving their individuality and keeping a passive-aggressive stand in which if the other fails to survive the poison they will go ballistic and lash out because the other is expected to survive this poison... I no longer understand what I'm talking about but this is how it appears to me."- Jean ended her long rigmarole in frustration at the nonsense that Aragorn was.

Death and Aragorn for their part, simply looked away with a subtle blush. It was true. Their love was erratic, dangerous, poisonous, illogical, intense, and many other attributes that would make a sane person run. But they loved and craved for the other, they wouldn't and couldn't change it for anything. 

"Look, Elara! Goosebumps!"- Stark exclaimed as he showed his arm to the maid.

"You're not the only one, look at the flutter in my wings."- Elara showed him how the lower tips of her wings fluttered.

"Mother... Do you think I will be able to find a love like yours?"- Seraph asked dreamingly at her mother.

*COUGH!*- Blood-stained spit came out of Aragorn's mouth. Tears of blood followed.

And then he fell unconscious to the ground.

"..."- Stark didn't know what to feel, was the universe avenging him?

"..."- Elara didn't know if she should run to her master's aid or laugh a little.

"Pfff! Hahahahahaha!"- Jean knew exactly what to do.

"Oh, Dear! You can be so silly sometimes..."- Death said.

"Father?"- Seraph asked.

Aragorn as—if restarting—came back online.

"Sorry about that, Seraph. I was permanently erasing some memories, what were we talking about?"- Aragorn said, a twitching eyelid exemplified how well and stable he was.

"Nothing, Love. I should return, the soul stream will await for none, not even me."- Death kissed him passionately as if she was trying to help him forget something he no longer remembered.

"Bye, Madame!"- Elara waved goodbye to her mistress.

After Death went away, Stark looked around and said:

"This was all as much insightful as it was terrifying, but... Could you please vacate the perimeters? Last I checked this property was under my name! You spend so much time in here that soon you'll be able to claim squatter's rights!"- Stark exclaimed.

He got several eye-rolls before everybody but Seraph portaled away.

"Tch! I would move to another place if only that could keep your space-warping family away."- Stark complained.

"Dramaqueen... I know you don't care that much about my family invading this place. Which is strange, since you don't allow Mr. Stane down here. Why is that?"- Seraph inquired.

"... Initially this place was my safe zone, where I could stop caring about the problems life brought to my doorstep. Then I stopped caring about it since I could party away my problems..."- Stark said in self-mockery.

"Then you came about and your crazy family followed... Leaving your psycho father aside, your family treats me like a human being, and not like a Stark..."- He admitted.

"I surmised as much. But what about Mr. Stane? Why don't you let him into your 'safe zone'?"- Seraph asked, her expression revealing nothing of her thoughts.

"... Please don't give me that look, Seraph."- Stark said.

"I'm sure I have no look on my face."- Seraph answered.

"No look is a look!"- Stark argued.

Seraph kept giving him the no-look look.

"*Sigh* I'm smart, granted I was never that wise, I may be an idiot sometimes, but I was never a fool... I simply was blinded by the party and the adulation of the masses. Obbie... he is not clean, is he?"- He asked, his voice breaking a little by the end.

"... No, Tony. He is dirty, and not in the way that affects the rest but not you, he is dirty in the way that I've been covering some of his tracks to thwart him from implicating you in his filth."- Seraph showed him a few documents and digital traces he left, accompanied by pictures and videos of him meeting know threats to the United States of America.

Paper trail, digital trail, money trail, and other evidence otherwise untraceable were it not for the advanced 'cyber chick' friend of his.

"Hydra? He is selling my weapons to fucking Nazis? The enemy of my father?! The enemy of your father?!"- Stark was aware of their existence, most who closely interacted with Aragorn knew.

"Among other offenses..."- Seraph mentioned, another holographic pile of documents on his screen followed after.

"... Why hasn't the Old Man killed him?"- He asked after breathing in some fake calm.

"Father has a policy of non-interference with our projects or social circles, if there's a problem or situation related to Stark Industries, you, or any of your known associates, then it's my responsibility to deal with it. Which is why he allowed me to work on your armor even though he doesn't want me to uplift your weaponry tech."- She explained.

In the same way he allowed Xavier to fester under Jean's and Kitty's watch, he now allows Stane to be under Seraph's purview.

"I don't know if his is off-hands or helicopter parenting anymore."- He mumbled.

"He can be quite contradictory, my father is cute like that."- Seraph said, she—just like her father—was quite biased toward her loved ones.

"What do you want to do with him, Tony?"- She asked.

"... I want to ignore him and live my life like I didn't know of his betrayal, but that's not possible, is it?"- Stark said in a self-deprecating manner.

"You, know it's not. If it was only about money, I could undo his mistakes. But many lives were lost as a consequence of his actions. Father doesn't care about a lot, but he puts great emphasis on retribution when people die. Even if I went against my better judgment and ignored him, Father would torture him to death, or something horrible like that, when he finds him and decides to fully rid the world of Hydra and its cooperatives—like Mr. Stane"- She motioned to the file containing the casualty report of his most recent successful business transaction.

"Argh! Obbie why did you do this?!"- Stark questioned in frustration but expected no answer.

"Seraph, What options do I have?"- He asked, his frustration was obvious to the eye.

"Several, Tony. If we go the legal way, he would be convicted of terrorism and would be looking at life imprisonment in the best case and the death sentence as the most likely outcome. Alas, he made deals with Hydra so it's possible that he would commit 'suicide' in his cell and never make it to trial."- Stark grimaced at her statement.

"While unethical, I don't recommend this path, given that Stark Industries would be audited and our stock value would plummet. The best way is to have him meet an unfortunate 'accident' and then have Pepper assume leadership of the company to fill in the power vacuum—I could help her meanwhile she gets used to the new boss pants."- She explained another course of action.

"I don't think much justice would be met that way..."- Stark commented. It was not that he deeply cared about 'Justice'—at least not the lawful definition of it—but more that he was raised under a system that instilled this belief in its members.

"Father is the ultimate authority of 'Justice' on this planet; he adjudicates for the death of 'Scum'."- Seraph factually spoke.

"That doesn't make me feel so secure, not that I believe I would fit the definition of 'Scum'."- Stark joked to lighten his mood.

"The other option would be to manipulate Stane into joining the good guys and leaving behind his scum-lord behavior."- Seraph responded with some humor.

"Manipulate? With threats?"- Stark asked for clarification since he didn't believe Stane would work well under threats, most never do.

"No, Tony. Mental interference."- Seraph pointed at her left temple to illustrate.

"Oh, hell no! I know that's pretty mainstream to you but please, Seraph, I want no part in playing with people's free will."- Stark strongly made his displeasure known.

"What about Soul Manipulation? There's no mind shenanigans in that."- She offered another 'acceptable' solution.

"Free will, Seraph, do you know it?!"- Stark exclaimed, his mood more erratic as they talked.

"~Mou, you're making it difficult. What about trapping him in a matrix and letting him live his ideal life while planting an android as his replacement?"- Seraph showed him the schematic of a tank connected to a hyper-veridic simulation.

"No, that's possibly worse!"- His heart rate was climbing.

"How is that worse? He would keep his free will intact."- Seraph innocently tilted her head.

"How is it not? Instead of manipulating his free will now you're talking about manipulating his perception of reality!"- His breathing pace increased.

"Oh? So no reality manipulation? I should cross out a few solutions then... Okay! I think I got it! This one is foolproof. First, we will have one of his known associates kidnap him-"- She said with an innocent smile.

"Oh god! Nothing good ever follows after 'kidnapping'."- Stark looked at the heavens for help.

"-then we will have him sustain some life-threatening injuries-"- Seraph continued.

"There you have it!"- Stark was disappointed by the lack of divine intervention.

"-these injuries better be from some of the weapons he illegally sold, like a missile, or mortar, something with the Stark Industries logo brazenly emblazoned in the explosive-"- She continued as if she didn't listen to his pleas.

"Are you even listening?"- Stark asked, yet he had already given up on stopping this aberration of a plan.

"-the damage should be enough to threaten his life but not sufficient to outright cripple him, maybe some shrapnel in the lungs or heart-"- She loaded a few diagrams of possible locations in the human body that could serve the purpose she was explaining.

"I see... You are not."- Stark wanted to stop listening to this plan.

"-it would be ideal if the location he is retained is someplace that tickled at the inherent claustrophobia most humans possess, like a subterranean bunker or base, a dark cave would do-"- She showed a world map with a few locations she recommended.

"..."- Stark no longer interrupted.

"-then we could force him to either find a way to escape through a miracle with the help of one of the victims of his illegal deals, this invaluable help should perish in the escape attempt and leave him with some words of inspiration and retrospection—which should force him to reflect on his life decisions—of course, this unfortunate victim should be a plant of ours, or we could stage an event in which he is visited by a holy figure who would promise him safety in exchange for repentance—I could probably do it, but if not, we can enlist the help of one of the maids."- Seraph offered several inspirational words that could work.

Among the options, there were: "With power comes responsibility.", "Don't Waste It.", "Live well and make it right. My death can't be in vain.", "Get out of here and live a life worth saving.", "I'm giving you my future. Make sure it's a good one.", "You've only got one shot so make it count."...

"For this plan to work, we would need his injuries to be inoperable for a long time, so shrapnel to the heart sounds better! What do you think?"- Seraph asked, nothing but good intention could be found on her face.

"... About that unfortunate accident, how much of a painless death could you give him?"- Stark asked.

"There's a weather alert for an electric storm this weekend, I can make a lightning volt gently land on his scalp and smoothly exit from his soles and/or testicles. Pretty much instant death."- She made an arc of electricity flow from one hand to the other.

"Tomorrow, then?"- Stark asked, he was checking Stane's schedule to confirm he would be out in the open or next to a window at some point the next day.

"Yes, tomorrow it could be. We will have to deal with some blackmailing after his passing, but it's nothing the maids or my black ops team couldn't handle. We don't have to worry about his more public business partners, after all, accidents are terrible and unexpected occurrences, also next week there are several thunderstorms expected."- She gave him a thumbs up.

"Please stop it with the murderous rampage."- Stark never in his life thought he would be restraining a baby AI from playing god... Life is unexpected like that...

"Fine! I already have blackmail on them, so there won't be any problems for the company on that side. You might be targeted by their representatives—assassins—but we are anyways updating your security since we will soon make enemies of the oil giants."- Seraph accepted his request.

"About that, how are you upgrading my security?"- Stark curiously asked.

"I can have some of the maids help, but they are too expensive—I would end up poor, I don't have many Favors and you don't have any—so I recommend getting some help from Krakoa."- Seraph lamented about her lack of economic might, sometimes she envied Kitty—she almost monopolized the currency, were it not for Spark's intervention they would all have ended enslaved to the visionary cat.

"Would it be allowed? I thought you said they were during their 'isolationist phase'."- Stark remembered how Seraph had explained that Krakoans do not go outside except to rescue mutants.

"It would only be a few members of the rescue team. The service would serve as practice for when Krakoa opens its doors and they have to engage in escort missions and security detail. The council most likely would ask you to support the nation when they step into the public eye. Overall you would not be charged with money but with 'backing'."- Seraph told him about her predictions.

"Mmmm, I think that is a good plan, but we could also ask them to beta-test our engine when we are done with it. It's preferable to test it in a closed environment before its official release. I don't think they would be opposed to it, would they?"- Stark imagined that having the nation that is majorly under the control of his friend try his tech first would only benefit both parties.

"I like that, I'll run it through them in the next assembly, which should be in three days."- Seraph believed it was a good idea, it should also help her gain more presence in the council—given that she gave up on making friends with most of them. 

"Let's work on the armor and then the engine."- Stark's mood was somewhat uplifted.

'It might have been a bit manipulative, but Tony needed the push to cut ties with his backstabber 'uncle'...'- Seraph thought to herself.


Sorry about the absence, one of the elders of my clan is ascending to a higher realm—such is life—he was not one close to me but he is one close to my immediate family, so taking care of him was distributed among us and I was left with little to no time to write.

This chapter was massive, with more than 15k words, I can't promise one for next week but I'll be working on it.

There are some pictures, if you get to here and you didn't see them in the Paragraph Comments then you might want to go back.