Jon frowned at the sudden spike in noise. They’d put him in a completely bare block room after the fifth time he’d nearly made it out. The rat bastards. There was normally no outside noise at all. Jon stood up from the corner he’d designated his bed and then crouched back down as a massive piece of the wall caved in. “Wow.”
The huge green guy blinked at him and then went right on down the hallway, smashing as he went. Jon stared after him for a few seconds before grabbing the boy in the next cell over by the arm.
“Move it.” He started herding them up and out. They hit the sub-level with the little kids and Jon suddenly found himself staring at Captain America. Which, wow, they really got someone to start that up again? He took the little boy the guy passed to him.
“Keep moving up.”
Well, those sorts of orders he could handle. Jon grabbed the hand of one of the older kids. “Come on.” He kept them moving up. One of the goons that they used to restrain him appeared on a landing above them and Jon started to set down the child he was carrying so he could fight when a knife went zipping past to embed itself in the goon’s neck.
The redheaded lady pushed on the last-most kid. “Keep going.”
Jon made sure to kick the downed goon on the way past.
On the surface it looked like they were tearing apart the whole place. There was a man in a suit beckoning to kids and moving them all towards a large helicopter. Jon approved of this and tugged on the boy he had ahold of. The kid was staring at the sky like he’d never seen it.
Jon needed to find a damn phone. He pulled the kid along. When they reached the helicopter he put the kid he was carrying up and in and then boosted the boy in. He went back and picked up a kid that was sitting and rocking on her heels, crying.
The redhead put a little girl down next to the helicopter and they all ducked as the place gave a huge crack as something down below gave way.
“Up and in, kid.”
The little girl stared at him. “Wow.”
Jon had gotten used to it. All the kids they made come stand in the same room with him had the same reaction. Or they started screaming and crying. Jon still wasn’t sure what they could do that caused it. “Just wrap yourself in the cargo webbing, okay?”
She nodded and started helping the crew wrap the unresponsive ones in securely. Jon turned and boosted the next little kid.
Jon watched the Centre, as he’d heard someone call it, collapse in on itself as the helicopter rose up into the air. The green guy had pulled it down it looked like. The noise of the helicopter kept anyone from asking anyone else questions. The skyline of New York was a beautiful sight. Jon leaned back against the side of the helicopter and fell asleep.
He woke up as someone started to pick him up. He held still and cracked an eye open. Captain America was carrying him into a hospital. His life just kept getting weirder. Jon closed his eyes and went back to sleep.
Jon kept quiet. None of the kids in his ‘age’ group were talking, so Jon didn’t either. He watched them shy from the windows and not touch anything unless it was literally put in their hands. The nurses were trying. They even brought in a shrink that reminded Jon more of Dr. Frasier than any actual shrink he’d dealt with.
He smiled at the woman, but still wouldn’t talk. He kept hoping he’d get a chance at a phone. He had a vague idea he’d been in the Centre for at least several months. No natural light had made it a bitch to keep track of time. Then he got a look at the date on the TV news and just stared. Years, it had been years.
He found a window that overlooked the wing they had the younger children in. Jon spent his time watching the little kids not be kids. It was really weird. He’d only seen other people in the Centre when they made a kid stand in the same room with him. Or when he’d tried to escape again and the goons, Cleaners, had beaten the hell out of him.
Then came the day Captain America came to visit. Jon just stared. The man looked just like him. It was really disconcerting. Jon had collected the trading cards when he was little. Well, the original him had. Stupid cloning.
He watched a one of the kids approached and sat down on the floor with the man. Jon finally turned away when the nurse called them for breakfast. At least they got cereal. He was the only one that seemed to like it.
The rest of the kids avoided him. The nurses smiled sadly at him, but Jon didn’t respond to that either. He really needed a damn phone, but he knew they’d ask him a million questions instead of just letting him at a phone.
Shortly after breakfast, the Captain America wannabe showed up. Jon stared at him along with everyone else as he sat on the floor and spread crayons and paper out around himself.
The man started to draw. Really well, like one of the comics said Captain America could do. Jon walked over and stared down at the man.
“Uh, hi.” He pushed a crayon at Jon. “You want to draw?” He went back to the green man he was drawing.
“Who is that?” Jon couldn’t help himself. He’d never seen anything like it.
The man looked startled. “He’s called the Hulk. His name is Bruce Banner when he isn’t green.”
Jon nodded. “Okay.” He took the gray crayon and started drawing Thor choking Loki. The man frowned at Jon’s drawing.
“Who is that?”
“Thor and Loki.”
The guy did a double take. “Really?” He quickly stretched something that looked like that huge blond guy that had been putting kids into the other side of the helicopter from Jon. “This is Thor.”
Jon frowned, debating revealing classified information before mentally shrugging. It had been years, after all. “Mine is an Asgard.”
“So is Thor.” The guy tilted his head. “When did yours come to Earth?”
Jon raised his eyebrows. “Lately? Last time I saw him was in 2003.” Jon pointed at the other Thor. “What address is he dialing from?”
The guy looked down at the picture of his Thor and then back to Jon. “I don’t think they dail anything. Tony said they used negative energy to open a space tunnel or tear thing. He got to babbling, so I’m not exactly sure.”
Jon blinked. “Huh. Different technology then.” He took a blank sheet and started a diagram for his favorite jet. “How’d you get talked into taking up the job of Captain America?”
“Uhm” The guy started to blush. It reminded Jon strongly of Daniel. “I am Steve Rogers. They pulled me out of the ice and I wasn’t dead.”
Jon cleared his throat. “No cerebral meningitis?”
Rogers blinked again. “No.” He looked at Jon. “You aren’t a Pretender?”
“There was one guy that called me that.” Jon put down the gray crayon and found a nice brown that matched what Jon remembered of Daniel's hair. “I broke his neck trying to escape a few weeks later. They never called me that again.”
With a nod, Rogers went back to drawing.