Jane’s eyes practically bugged out as she read the display.
“Those are crazy eyes.” Darcy exclaimed. “I don’t trust you when you get crazy eyes. As a rule.”
“All I’m doing is reading the results.” Jane insisted. “But I think I’ve discovered why you’ve been feeling so run down lately.”
“Don’t tell me. My Hulk genes are mutating into something even more Hulky?” Darcy sighed. She’d never expected to end up as a female version of the Hulk. After an attack by the Mole Man (Darcy still couldn’t get over it. She’d almost been taken down for the count by the Mole Man. LAME.) she’d needed an emergency blood infusion. Instead of the safe donor blood, Darcy had ended up getting pints of Bruce Banner’s special gamma radiated recipe, turning her into what Tony called “The Hulkette.”
Being called Hulkette made Darcy want to HULK SMASH Tony into little pieces. She’d done so, once, too. Or nearly. Tony survived with barely a scratch, but the results had not been pretty.
There had been a special inquiry into what had happened (the official line was that the attack at Midtown Science High by the Vulture earlier that day had used up all of their universal donor supply. Darcy had been given a heck of a lot of money not to sue. Plus, there was job security, which was good.
Darcy was getting the hang of keeping the She-Hulk (or the other gal, as she called her) at bay. She hadn’t been gamma irritated for as long as Bruce had, but she had greater control. Hello, she’d been managing violently changing mood swings since puberty for a week a month. Pamprin was also a wonder at not hulking out.
Since her transformation, Darcy had been growing closer to Bruce Banner. He was smart and funny, and the only other being on the planet that could understand what they were going through. They were kind of their own species, which was cool. Slowly but surely, their relationship was growing from friendship into a romance. For a buttoned upon science geek, Bruce Banner sure could kiss.
They were taking it slow. But that was okay. It worked for them.
“Not exactly.” Jane sighed. “I don’t know how to tell you, Darce, but…you’re pregnant.”
With those words, the usually unflappable Darcy Lewis fainted.
Darcy was sitting at the kitchen nook in Jane’s Stark Tower apartment, silently rocking back and forth on the barstool. She’d recovered from fainting, but the shock was still with her.
“Tea?” Jane offered, and Darcy nodded, taking the cup and cradling it in her hands. “I also have Pop-Tarts, oh, and Toaster Strudel. Thor loves them.”
“No thanks.” Darcy said softly.
“So.” Jane fidgeted nervously. “I thought that you and Bruce were taking it slow. I didn’t even realize that you’d…” Jane made an interlocking motion with her hands. “you know?”
“We haven’t.” Darcy sighed. “It’s been totally PG-13 between us.” She sighed. “A little bit ago, you know, after I hulked out to help with that crisis with the guy with a fishbowl on his head and the school bus? I kind of woke up, on top of Bruce, and we were, you know…naked. And that really hasn’t happened since Reed Richards gave us the uniforms with the unstable molecules, but ….man. The other girl is a horn dog. Who didn’t use protection.”
“Are you going to keep it?” Jane said softly.
Darcy sighed. “I’m all for women having a choice. But I don’t know if this is a choice I can make. I….I just don’t know. Hell, I don’t even know how am I going to tell Bruce?”
Darcy paced around the lab nervously. How do you tell someone that his other self had knocked up your other self? There were no how to books on this. No manual. No “What to Expect When You’re Expecting an Avenger’s Baby.” (Though with how Tony Stark had gotten around before he started dating Pepper, that was a miracle.)
The doors to the lab opened, and Tony strode in, carrying a bag of popcorn.
“What are you doing here?”
“I own the place.” Tony said, leaning up against the lab counter. “And I came for the show.”
“Have you forgotten that I have eyes and ears all over the tower? Jarvis keeps me updated on everything that’s going on, from the latest developments in the Natasha and Clint drama; to Thor’s obsession with the whole Robsten blow up. Would you believe that he’s been hiding US Weekly magazines? And that’s how I found out about your upcoming blessed event.”
Darcy shot Tony an icy cold stare. “Give me one reason that I shouldn’t hulk out and go medieval on your ass?”
“It wouldn’t be good for the baby?” Tony suggested.
Of course, Bruce had picked that moment to enter the lab.
Darcy sighed, and took a deep breath. “You see, when one Hulk finds a She-Hulk that he finds attractive, and when all systems are go with nature, hulk babies happen.”
Bruce stared silently.
“It was the time with the school bus. And I know this is crazy, but it’s happening. I’m pregnant.”
Bruce didn’t move an inch, frozen in shock.
“Say something.” Darcy said softly. “Please.”
“I…” Bruce turned around and left the lab.
Darcy sat in the lounge outside the lab, staring out at the New York City skyline.
“Tony is an ass.” Jane fumed from her seat beside Darcy. Just as she made her declaration, Pepper Potts walked in. Jane flushed, embarrassed.
“Don’t stop on my account.” Pepper declared. “I love the guy, but I am fully aware that he can be a gigantic jerk.”
“You can say that again.” Natasha said, entering the room. She placed a chocolate bar in front of Darcy.
“I have found that there are few things that chocolate can’t help with.”
“Thanks.” Darcy said, taking the bar and opening the wrapper. She lifted it up to her mouth and took a large bite. “But I don’t think that even chocolate can help me out of this.”
“I will make Tony pay for this.” Pepper said, joining Darcy, Jane, and Natasha at the table. “In more ways than one.”
“As much as I’d like to make him suffer greatly, Tony is hardly the worst of my worries. You should have seen Bruce’s face when he heard…I’ve never seen him look like that. And I don’t know what to do. I’ve always wanted kids of my own, in a far off way future handwavy kind of way. Not immediately. Not now. But if I think about ending the pregnancy or just giving it away…my heart breaks. And I thought that with my condition, that I might not be able to have kids. And now, I’m expecting, and I don’t know how to handle it. I don’t know if I can do this on my own, or if I want to.”
“I was pregnant once.” Natasha said softly. “I lost it. I don’t wish that on anyone.”
“We’re here for you, no matter what you decide.” Pepper said, reaching out and squeezing Darcy’s hand. “It’s your decision, but we will help you no matter what.”
A knock sounded on the door, and a sheepish looking Bruce Banner stuck his head in. “Can I talk to Darcy? Privately?”
Jane, Pepper, and Natasha nodded, and left quickly and quietly.
“Darce.” Bruce said, sitting down by Darcy. “I really blew things earlier.”
“Ya think?” Darcy nodded. “I was prepared for you to be shocked, I was prepared for you to be angry, but I wasn’t prepared for you to just run away.”
“I’d always thought that my condition would, you know, keep me from having kids. A massive amount of radiation would me unable to have sperm that would be viable. So I just kind of crossed that possibility out. I crossed a lot of things out. I never thought I’d fall in love again. And I’ve fallen for you, Darcy. I love you, and I’ve been too shy and too afraid to come out and say it, because when things get going really good for me, they tend to fall apart. Having a child with you is better than anything I could have ever planned. And I hope…I hope I didn’t blow it.”
“I love you, Bruce.”
“So are we having a baby?”
“It looks like it.” Darcy smiled.
Bruce leaned over and kissed her deeply.
“Awww.” Tony sighed, from the doorway. “I do love a happy ending.”