Chapter 1: One: Failure of systems
One: Failure of systems
He's young for those who count the days in which he has fully existed in this world: forty-seven days, two hours, twenty-six minutes and three seconds.
Innocent, he manages to marvel at every little thing, every little gesture. His eyes flutter with each new thing he learns, and his smile is easy, kind.
He's naive, oh so naive in the face of his new companions’ jokes; in the face of Sam’s antics.
He doesn't know much about interaction between people, but he strives for it every day. He wants to understand the world in which he has been so intrinsically incorporated. He wants to be a complete participant in the phenomenon that humans call life.
He wants to do it; however, understanding the complexity of emotions is quite difficult. It poses an arduous task, a task he doesn’t know if he is capable of perfectly mastering.
Vision really thinks he can’t. At least not without the help of others.
The complex is silent, so he takes the opportunity to read the encyclopedia that Captain Rogers gave him a few days ago. The perfect gift to understand the current world, the Captain commented with a simple smile and a sparkle in his eyes.
Vision smiles, delighting in turning and reading each page.
The first time it happens, the steps resonate, accompanied by the most melodious sound he’s heard in his short life - the melody of an angel. His chest contracts abruptly at the sound, his synthetic heart beats strongly against his chest, and his hands instantly close around the white pages.
He quickly closes his eyes and imitates a movement learned from his peers - he takes a deep breath, which he knows he doesn’t need - to try and calm the pressure that has drastically affected his body.
"Vision!" The voice is soft, gentle, bringing with it a balm for his chest. "Are you okay?"
He opens his eyes to see young Maximoff’s anguished expression in front of him.
Her green eyes look at him with an emotion that he isn't able to decipher, but they make his mouth feel dry and his words cling to his lips.
"Are you okay?" she asks again. This time, her pale fingers touch his skin, creating a beautiful contrast that has his skin tingling at the contact.
He swallows and nods.
She nods too, still looking at him, then smiles. She takes a step back in order to continue her conversation with Sam.
Minutes later, Vision understands that the emotion in his chest was produced by the sound of Ms Maximoff's laughter.
Time passes slowly, healing the physical and mental wounds that the Sokovia battle tragically invoked.
Vision’s days are full of learning, reading, and chess games with Colonel James Rhodes - who he particularly considers a worthy opponent - while his nights are based on the logical search for an explanation to his past experience.
He rejects most theories for their lack of validity.
Secretly, he finds himself wanting to hear her laughter again. For entirely scientific reasons.
Or feel her fingertips against his skin; for reasons that he can't define, but considered totally unscientific.
It's seventeen days, twelve hours, four minutes and six seconds later when it happens again.
Vision’s mind raises a series of hypotheses when he hears the first sob.
His senses are sharpened, looking for the source of such anguish. His feet are automatically directed to Ms Maximoff's room. He goes through the wall with ease, to find her sitting in the center of the bed sobbing, her hands clinging to the purple covers while tears wet her cheeks. Her hair falls with simplicity onto her shoulders, and he finds himself swallowing the lump in his throat.
This must be what should be felt as ‘concern.’ Vision will make sure to confirm it later. Maybe he can ask Mr. Stark.
Another sob escapes her lips, and this time he takes a step toward her, wanting to ease her pain.
"Ms Maximoff," he calls softly, not wanting to surprise her.
Her lips tremble when her penetrating gaze meets his. "What? Didn't they teach you to knock on the door?" she screams. She hides her face in her hands.
Vision lowers his head. His heart contracts heavily. "I'm sorry."
In the absence of an answer, he looks up and continues. "I should read the cohabitation protocols again. There are many implicit norms and..."
She sits up without looking at him; however, he can see the tears soaking her shirt. The pain in his chest intensifies unpleasantly. "I heard you cry and... I do not want to generate more anguish. I'll retire immediately."
He turns around without daring to steal another look. The beat of his heart has stabilized, but he still feels the heaviness in his chest when he hears her cry.
"Wait!" Her cut voice stops him at the door frame. "I'm sorry! It's not your fault," Wanda says, and he can hear the sincerity in her voice.
He nods and leaves the room.
Three seconds later, he's knocking on her door.
Ms Maximoff opens it, with a look full of confusion. She inclines her head to one side, and his heart jumps at the outline of a faint smile marking her lips. She's about to speak when he excuses himself timidly.
"They told me to knock on the door before entering a room."
She nods, moving to allow him entry.
The room remains dark, but he can dazzle the brightness of the lamp on her nightstand. Somehow the ethereal light surrounds her body, making her look smaller, much more fragile.
Vision’s hands tremble at the feeling of protection he wants to offer, but he rejects the feeling. It's not logical, much less sensible.
Not if he compares her reaction to his past intrusion.
"I miss him." Her voice brings him back to reality. She regains her place in the center of the bed, while he looks at her motionless, not knowing how to proceed. "I miss him a lot, and I don't know how to erase the pain that I feel in my chest."
Her voice has an echo of sadness that sinks into him when she looks at him. Her cheeks remain suspiciously wet, but he doesn't comment. It's well known in the complex that Ms Maximoff doesn't like to be perceived as someone who cries easily.
"Have you ever felt pain in your chest, Vision?" she asks with such an intense look that he's sure that if he could breathe, that would have stopped it.
His heart contracts again, fiercely. Is his pain similar to that of the beautiful young woman with beautiful green eyes?
No. He has never lost anyone, has never experienced the range of emotions that an average human being would experience. He will never do it.
That knowledge makes his heart contract heavily again.
"No," he admits. "However, my data source indicates that memories are stored for prolonged periods in a person's life."
She looks at him with confusion.
"In no way will they replace your brother's loss, but they can help you invoke happier times and calm the pain."
Her lips curve into a smile. "Do you have a psychological alliance database inside?"
He hastens to shake his head, slightly confused. "No, but if you prefer, I can look for specialized books in...”
And it happens again. A warm sensation begins under his feet and extends to every cell of his body when he hears her laugh.
It's a much softer melody, but somehow more natural.
He opens his mouth, but no sound comes out.
His heart feels like it's going to explode.
"To serve, Ms...”
She protests with a wave of her hand.
"Wanda." She smiles warmly, like a thin strand of her light hair that falls over her forehead. Her forehead wrinkles a second later. "Ms Maximoff is too formal."
"Wanda." Vision proves her name on his lips. He likes the sound.
Later, after she has fallen asleep, his mind resonates with the sound of her angelic voice taking root in each of his programs.
It's disconcerting, to tell the truth.
The training begins again, three weeks later under the tutelage of Captain Rogers and Ms Romanoff.
His gaze lingers on each of his companions. Sam and Colonel Rhodes compete high in the heavens for who is the fastest; Clint tries to hit every one of his targets, the arrow hitting the center of each target, even those, that by distance, are almost invisible.
But his attention is taken by Ms Max... Wanda, Vision corrects mentally.
Her movements are aesthetically pleasing. Her hands paint a scarlet canvas with each of the sparks that frame her fingers.
He can't help but marvel at the ease with which her hands conjure up simple abstract forms, how she creates patterns of shapes with her delicate hands. And - the most disconcerting part for him - her laughter as it takes hold over every sound in the place.
His heart responds to the sound, squeezing as usual. That same feeling increases when she sees him and smiles. He feels dizzy, but as the orders escape the Captain's lips, the sensation becomes bearable. He closes his eyes and breathes.
It's only when she stops laughing that the sensation disappears. And he's able to open his eyes.
"Yeah, one, two, three, calling Vision, we need you on earth!" exclaims Sam, laughing. The Captain gives him a curious look and the Colonel laughs.
His lips join in a thin line and he shakes his head in dismay.
He should consider a solid theory to explain what is happening to his body.
At this point it is already worrying.
Today’s training continues; exhausting for each of his companions. Wanda is no exception. Her body is lying face down on the cozy sofa in neutral colors. Her head rests on her new red cardigan; thin strands cover her angelic face. Her breathing is light, while her hand has fallen to the side.
"It's rude to stare at a person while she's sleeping," she says with a sleepy smile. Her eyes are still closed, and Vision jumps.
"I... he starts." I did not want to, I...”
Her answer comes in the form of a giggle. "I like the way you get all nervous. It's adorable, almost like your shows are going to short circuit."
His heart jumps.
His mouth dries.
And his mind runs.
Wanda opens her eyes and jumps up.
"You're not short-circuiting, are you?" she asks tentatively, placing her right hand directly on his chest, at the height of his synthetic heart.
His heart resounds, feeling the heat coming from her hand. A tingling forms in his stomach and spreads throughout his body, like an electric current about to finish with everything that is within his reach.
Maybe he should consider whether his body is malfunctioning.
Maybe she isn't far from the truth.
The way his body acts, every sound that comes from her, while still disconcerting, is music to his mind.
"Vision," she calls, and concern shows in her features.
He swallows. Her green eyes shine when they look at him. They greet him with a language he can't understand.
His heart beats fast. He purses his lips, wanting to avoid the sensation.
Then, she does the unthinkable. She brings her pale fingers to his face, caressing with a tenderness that his cheek has never felt.
And his world moves from one place to another.
He is hit with one of the strongest sensations he has felt in his short existence. His heart beats at a disconcertingly high rate, his hands sweat and his stomach twists. He is sure that his pupils dilate before his beautiful smile, but it's a fact that is erased instantly.
He takes a step back, leaving an incredulous and disconcerted Wanda behind.
Tony’s fingers move with precision, working on the last update of his suit when the sound of footsteps echoes on the floor.
He turns to focus all his attention on her, casually dressed in one of his black T-shirts and a pair of shorts. Her red hair falls over her shoulders.
Tony looks at her, wide-eyed, his pupils completely dilated. He swallows as he feels his heart beat fast and tries to climb up his throat as his eyes slowly travel over the vision of her. She looks lovely.
When she gets closer, her eyes shine like her creamy skin does. Her lips curve with an air of smugness as she realizes the reaction he is having.
"What?" She blinks innocently, fluttering her eyelashes at him.
"You look like an angel that’s descended from heaven," he manages to articulate eloquently, giving her one of those gallant smiles. She feels her cheeks burn. Her heart skipped a couple ofbeats.
She chuckles. "Stop trying to make me blush."
He smiles, bending so his lips are very close to her. "No."
She smiles, amused at him and his particular act of gallantry, which resonates dangerously in him tonight. His eyes are as she details, his hair slightly disheveled, bare torso (his flannel MIT is discarded at the bottom of the sofa) and charming smile make him worthy of attention.
"Now, who’s watching?" he jokes.
"Don't gloat about it." She teases by following his game.
"So, you don't find me attractive?" His captivating gaze is on her, trying to get a reaction .
The blush intensifies on her face. She smiles again, making him weak with that dazzling smile only she possesses. Now she looks at him with wide eyes, so her smile becomes wider with every second that passes. "I mean... you don't look so bad."
"It's okay... I’ll take what I can get," Tony nods, knowing that the first answer was the honest one.
His loquacious response dies on his lips when there’s a tap on his glass door.
"Ah! There's my boy! Welcome back!"
Pepper looks up at the door and smiles.
"Why did you knock on the door?" Tony looks a little bewildered.
Vision lowers his head in embarrassment. "It has come to my knowledge that it is polite to knock before entering a room."
Tony lets out a laugh. "Why do you want to knock on the door if you can go through the walls? It's much cooler to go through them as if you were a ghost.”
Vision nods, looking at the couple. Pepper smiles, taking a step back, understanding how the situation can be seen from his point of view.
She collected Tony's discarded shirt for him to put on.
Tony’s response is a suggestive movement of eyebrows and a naughty smile.
Pepper's cheeks color to match her hair. She turns to Vision and hugs him. "It's been a while, honey, we miss you."
He silently agrees.
She takes him by the hand so that he sits next to her on the sofa. Tony sits in the opposite chair, giving her a look that she thinks is questioning.
"How are you, darling?"
Vision is quick to respond, denying the torrent of emotions that runs through his system. "Everything is fine, I...”
"Ri-ight," Tony drawls. "Something is definitely wrong with you. Come on, tell your understanding and kind father everything."
"I'm fine!" Vision says, sighing.
That has Pepper's attention. She settles herself in her seat and eyes the man curiously. "Is everything alright?"
He bits his lip, considering her words. "I was wondering if I could talk to you about something... It's just that... I do not know who else I could talk to."
Her face clears. Her hand rests comfortably on his shoulder in support. "Of course! You can talk to either of us about the issue that is bothering you."
"Is it one of the new recruits who’s making you feel bad, or is it Capsicle who’s bothering you with his orders and his perfect hair?" Tony asks, earning an eyeroll from his redheaded girlfriend.
Vision shakes his head. "I'm afraid I've been experiencing flaws in my systems that prevent me from working in an optimal way."
"FRIDAY!" Tony calls in a raised voice. "Perform an exhaustive analysis of the programs and component of the Vision body."
Pepper smiles warmly while the seconds pass.
"There are no anomalies in any circuits, programs or component fibers, Mr. Stark. Would you like me to run another analysis?" Friday's robotic voice responds.
"No," Vision responds. He has already analyzed his own body on multiple occasions; reaching the same conclusion.
Pepper places her hands in her lap with a fine movement. "Do you want to tell us what you mean by ‘experiencing faults’?"
Vision’s gaze falls to a point on the ground. His hands play with the threads of his navy blue cardigan.
"On four different occasions my chest has contracted involuntarily, making my synthetic heart beat at a hurried pace. My stomach has experienced jumps that do not match their own movements, my mouth feels dry, my palms sweat and I have been unable to give an answer after several attempts to induce an answer in me. "
Tony's eyebrows form a furrow on his face, but it is Pepper who continues the conversation.
"Does this happen in the presence of a known person?" she asks knowingly.
If anyone could say that Vision's face is flushed, Pepper could say it's happening right now. His blue eyes flicker with a new glow, his nostrils open like his mouth and a dark tone takes over his face.
She smiles fondly. Clearly, he's blushing.
The strange heat twists in Vision’s chest when he responds. "Ms. Maximoff."
Vision's voice is shy when he speaks, very different from the voice to which they are accustomed. "I have experienced failures in my systems in the presence of Ms. Maximoff."
"The witch?" Tony whispers, not low enought, by the look that his robot son is giving him. "Wanda?" he tries again.
Vision nods. "I am inevitably anguished in her constant presence."
And this is how he explains what he’s experienced in the time he’s been in the complex. What the sound of her laughter achieves in each of his systems; as her minimal and slight smile makes his heart flutter so fast that it really hurts; as her touches send electricity to his fibers and how she has the ability to make him feel incoherent.
"She's definitely a witch," Tony jokes, getting up to pat him on the shoulder.
Vision gives him a puzzled look. "Is there something wrong with me, Mr. Stark? Is Ms Maximoff using her mental abilities on me?"
Tony laughs, wiping a tear that spills from his eyes.
"I'm afraid so, my dear boy." He stops, and when he speaks again, his voice has a overly-dramatic tone. "She’s used one of the worst and most effective tricks to play with you. She has bewitched you."
Vision gasps in horror, which only makes his creator laugh even more.
"Tony!" Pepper punches him in the shoulder, scolding him for his childish behavior, joking about Vision's obvious anguish.
The chestnut-haired man prepares for another ingenious retort, but the look of his girlfriend silences him. "I'm serious, Tony."
Vision looks at Pepper with confusion, then at Tony. "I'm afraid I do not understand."
Pepper sighs, bites her lips nervously, wishing she could explain herself naturally.
Vision’s glance is expectant, with a mixture of curiosity and something of fear. Pepper believes that he may be hyperventilating, if that could happen, so she takes pity on him. Her hand traces soothing circles on his back, just as she does with Tony when he is upset, terrified or just being him.
"Don't worry, Vision," the redhead starts, sending a warm smile in his direction. "She hasn't bewitched you as Tony has implied." Another smile is thrown as she continues the soothing movements, bringing some comfort. Vision automatically relaxes. "What you're experiencing is something normal. It happens a lot and it's called attraction, or falling in love."
His mouth opens, but he doesn't speak.
Tony laughs without stopping, looking at him. He shrugs with simplicity. "Yes, we didn't think you could feel completely either, but look at yourself, you’re a complete casanova!"
"Falling." Vision repeats the word again and again, wanting to understand the concept. He searches various references, within which one highlights.
Falling in love: emotional state of product of joy, in which one person feels powerfully attracted to another, giving the satisfaction of someone who can understand and share as many things as life brings. From the biochemical point of view, it is a process that begins in the cerebral cortex, passes to the endocrine system and transforms into physiological responses and chemical changes caused in the hypothalamus by the segregation of dopamine.
The infatuation is based on gestures and emotional, motor, sexual, intellectual and instinctive communication. Gestures are physically-based as well, and are carried out by moving, looking, caressing and talking.
Pepper seems to read the surprise in his eyes. "It's okay, honey." Her voice is sweet and soft. "It's one of the best stages of life."
Tony watches the situation with a new light of pride inflating his chest. He smiles openly, getting up to look for his most expensive whiskey so he can toast with it.
"My son is becoming a man! I’m so proud," Tony declares pouring the liquor into the glass.
"Oh!" She shrugs a little; she wasn’t sure that Tony would react like that.
His reaction becomes much more enthusiastic when he stops to Vision over. Pepper can almost see the light bulb appear over his head. She waits for him to tell her his brilliant idea.
He doesn't disappoint her.
"This is the part where I give him the talk about the birds and the bees , right?" Tony smiles at his own comment. Vision blinks and narrows his eyes. "My son was born yesterday, and today he is growing...”
"I was born th...” Vision interrupts him.
"No, it's important." Tony dismisses it with a wave of his hands, continuing his monologue. "Yeah, you inherited Bruce's dork side," Tony frowns. However, the smile returns to his lips as he speaks. "But the intelligence and amazing good looks come from me," Tony declares proudly, strutting like a peacock. "You’ll drive her crazy, she’ll fall so fast for you that she won’t know what hit her!"
Vision sighs audibly at such a perspective and shakes his head. "In no way would I like Ms Maximoff to lose her sanity or be hurt because of me."
Tony laughs, clearly amused.
Pepper comes to his defense. "Tony means he's sure you'll get to win her affections if that's what you really want."
"That means... "
"The sensation you experience may be reciprocal or one-sided, Vision." Pepper says.
Vision exhales. Maybe she doesn’t feel this way. Maybe he doesn't either, and it's only temporary.
He's taken out of his trance by the movement of his creator through the workshop to refill his glass.
Tony takes a sip of his drink, winks at his girlfriend and speaks as if understood in the matter. "For example, Pepper really couldn't resist my charms."
"Resist," she teases with an amused smile playing on her lips as she looks him. "Ignore."
Tony looks at her indignantly. "She rejected me a total of 108 times."
Pepper smiles at him, totally in love. "But in the end it was completely worth it."
Tony shakes his head slowly, a lazy smirk curling one corner of his mouth. "I’d be rejected another 108 times if it meant being with you forever," He declares, with love floating in each of his words.
She can't help but smile broadly at him.
The android observes their intriguing exchange, his memories of Jarvis allowing him to see first-hand the full development of the relationship between them. And, by detailing the dynamics of everything, he can't help thinking that what he is seeing is what the books describe as love.
Is that what he’s feeling; even like that?
He doesn’t know.
His chest contracts. She can't be in love with him.
She’ll never fall in love with an android, a synthetic being.
But hope leaps into his mind. Could it happen?
It's hours later when Vision lies in a world of dreams (induced by an extroverted mind and a great help on FRIDAY’S part) on the big bed in one of the main rooms of the Stark Tower when the chestnut-haired man begins to sketch his ideas on paper.
Pepper, at his side, gives him a questioning look.
"Easy peasy." Tony clicks his tongue. "He just has to conquer the girl."
Pepper looks at his strangely as he passes. "What do you mean?"
"People who were born to be together end up together at the end," he assures her with total naturalness.
"In what way?" she ventures to ask, knowing that the answers Tony is giving are as ambiguous as any bad romance novel.
"I have a plan for Vision to conquer the witch; a couple of tips."
"Tony's plan, right?"
"Exactly! All my ideas are infallible, Pep."
"Whatever you say. This could probably end up being a mess, a lot of bad ideas put together."
"So, you’re signing up?" Tony smiles amusedly.
"Of course." She kisses him on the cheek. "Count on me. "
"Robo Son, we’re going to help you... do you agree with the plan?" asks Tony as soon as he approaches Vision’s bed.
"You know, he can't answer," Pepper laughs.
Tony shrugs, the word ‘prank’ reading in his expression. "All the more reason why he can't refuse later."
The beginning of the plan. How to Conquer Wanda and Not Die Trying.
Chapter 2: One: Girls love a man who always dresses well.
"How to Conquer Wanda Maximoff and not Die in the Attempt for Dummies. Rule number 1. Make sure you attract her attention. Dress well. Girls love a man who always dresses well."
First I want to thank all those people who read my story; It is amazing the support I had.
I hope you enjoy this chapter.
Thanks to NeverNik. Who helped me with this chapter and was kind to me.
Disclaimer: This fanfiction is not written for profit and no infringement of copyright is intended. Disclaimer: I don´t own Marvel.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
One: Girls love a man who always dresses well.
The flow of abstract images envelops his mind, allowing Vision to achieve a pattern similar to REM sleep in humans. It's an experience he's never had before, but it pleases him immensely.
"Good morning sunshine, time to rise!"
Vision listens to the words as soon as his eyes open. He stretches, looking around, feeling the softness of the sheets around his body.
It's very early; the clock on the night table marks seven in the morning. Miss Potts must have woken him; the superhero is not known to be a regular early riser.
The chestnut-haired man greets him with a wave of hands, a funny smile playing on his lips.
"Look at that, FRIDAY managed to put you to sleep!" Tony shrugs. "I guess counting electronic sheep works!" he laughs.
"Good morning, Mr... Tony," Vision nods, hopping out of bed and automatically arranging the sheets by folding them perfectly. "I must thank you for allowing me to stay, and for the help that you and Miss Potts provided the night before."
Tony watches him, drumming his fingers on every surface he finds in the room. His mind flutters with new ideas.
"For that, we are loving and charitable parents." Tony finds it important to clarify that point. "Now, come on. There's a lot of work to do."
Vision nods, following his path, while the chestnut-haired man beside him gleefully chatters about new processing circuits, repair suits, updates to the Mark 72 and how hard it is to keep your eyes open at seven o'clock in the morning.
The droid’s lips curve up slightly, admiring how the mind of his creator seems to have no rest. Perhaps the mind of a genius moves in a different sense from other people; that would explain Tony's behavior and the way that he processes information so remarkably.
Vision will look for more information about it, thinking about how a cup of coffee is offered by one of the robots that works in the Stark house. Dummy, Vision remembers.
The small robot moves its metallic arm, cataloging it, then lets out a sound very similar to a squeak.
"Yeah, I know." Tony hits Dummy's metal arm playfully. "The prodigal son returns home."
Another squeak resounds, a basic language created by the union of metallic pieces and creative electronics.
Tony nods, following the line of his robot. "I'm also happy to have him back," he replies kindly. "Now, enough of chats; your little brother and I will work on how to make a girl fall in love with him."
Vision's eyes open in surprise, just like his mouth does. A characteristic gesture of an average human. He’s managed to perfect it over time.
Dummy manages another squeak; this time, more prolonged, moving his metallic arm from one side to another. Its integrated monocular is fixed on Vision.
"I'm pleased to see you again, Dummy."
That seems to be the answer that the little robot seeks. It moves from side to side, and with that - he is gone.
"I hope that the night of dreams brought you a wonderful revelation." It's Tony who breaks the ice, sitting on his couch.
Vision’s synthetic heart leaps. His night of dreams, as Tony paraphrased, has served as the search engine for possible explanations regarding its malfunction; and through all of them he’s reached the same result.
It is useless to deny what is happening.
It will not change the way his body reacts to his partner’s laughter or closeness.
His gaze stays fixed on the coffee cup in his hands, then he bravely meets the hopeful gaze of his creator. "I have come to the conclusion that I am experiencing different emotions in relation to Miss Maximoff."
Tony smiles, pleased. "And what will you do about it, Big Red?"
Vision stares at his, mouth open.
A question for which he still has no answer.
"I figured that much." Tony rolls his eyes and suspires, getting up from his seat.
Tony hands Vision a folded white paper. Vision opens it with gentleness. His eyes fly between each word in disbelief.
Tony nods, gesturing with his left hand for Vision to read aloud.
"How to Conquer Wanda Maximoff and not Die in the Attempt for Dummies. Rule number 1. Make sure you attract her attention. Dress well. Girls love a man who always dresses well."
"Are you absolutely sure about this?" Vision’s low voice rises, as if he isn't convinced.
Tony closes his eyes firmly.
"I didn’t get all those girls or women from staying quiet. The worst that can happen is that she rejects you, but you move on." Tony laughs and waggles his eyebrows.
Vision blinks at his creator.
His mind runs in different directions as the words sink in.
The worst that could happen! That's exactly the problem!
Vision doesn't want to be rejected! He's experienced what it's like to be seen as someone different, strange, even monstrous in the eyes of many. He doesn't want that particular emotion coming from young Maximoff.
"Trust me," Tony says with a bright grin. "She'll love it. Women love a perfectly dressed man."
"Am I not a well-dressed man?" Vision asks with complete honesty. He shrugs his shoulders, trying to look more casual, something he’s learned from Tony - who constantly says that he should move less like an android and more like a male model.
Vision doesn't know what to think about that. He doesn't know any male models.
Tony nods his head vehemently. "First thing. You need a makeover."
"A makeover?" Vision repeats, eyes brightening.
"Just some changes in wardrobe," Tony says, looking in horror at the cashmere sweater Vision’s wearing. "Don't get me wrong, but you look like a horrible librarian from the 80s."
Vision is about to replicate when the chestnut-haired man continues his verbiage. "We need to find some clothes that don't hide that sexy vibranium body of yours."
"I don't have a 'sexy' body."
"Who said that?" Tony asks, tentatively. "Was it Capsicle or Sam? Or was Thor? Because he's a God. So he technically doesn't count," Tony jokes.
Three seconds are enough for the android to express what is really occupying his mind. "I don’t have any money."
Tony lets out a sound that sounds very close to a howl.
Vision documents it in his mind as ‘theatrical.’
"If only you knew an intelligent, handsome, millionaire who could pay for you? Umm," Tony says with a smirk. His answer comes with a slap on Vision’s chest. "Oh, right, you do! You have me, the RoboFather." Tony waves off Vision’s worries with a flick of his wrist. "Come on, little one, let's change your look."
Vision fiddles with the hem of his sweater, considering his words. "Maybe you're right... I... I think."
Tony winks. "Of course I'm right! I've got years of female experience and guys on my side."
Vision doesn't know how to respond to that. Tony is the expert in those fields.
"Don't worry, Robo Son, you'll be the most handsome-looking boy in all of the complex when I'm done with you."
The rich aroma that invades her nostrils, accompanied by a sound that makes her stomach growl is the main cause of her leaving the shared room and approaching the kitchen.
From his position in front of the stove, Colonel Rhodes, or Rhodey, as he likes to be called, sends her a friendly smile while his attention is divided between cutting the vegetables perfectly and checking the sauce for the chicken he’s preparing.
"Dinner will be ready in ten minutes," the man declares with gleaming pride.
Wanda nods and hops onto the stool to the right of Sam, who watches like a hawk at every step the Colonel takes.
"I bet him twenty dollars that his "gourmet" chicken is not as good as mine," Sam comments, starting the conversation.
Wanda smiles, but not daring to be included in their bets. It's well known in the complex that the bets between certain male Avengers end in an unstoppable series of practical jokes.
Wanda crosses her arms, female pride refusing to budge.
Her stomach growls again, but Sam is so focused on his bet with the Colonel that he doesn't notice it. Wanda thanks the sky for it.
Shame it isn't something that she's used to handling, especially when the typical response is a mockery at her expense.
The tinkling of glasses and plates makes Wanda deviate from her thoughts and turn around to see Steve and Natasha setting the table. They remind her of one of those TV comercials where the mother smiles kindly, placing each chair in its place while the father returns the smile with bright eyes, arranging each spoon and fork to perfection.
How domestic would the world think they are?
Sometimes enough, so that people like her are able to leave her hiding behind, get away from the darkness, and glimpse a little bit of the light that the world has to offer.
Wanda has come a long way. The pain touched her life very early without asking permission, taking with her the people in whose arms she felt comfortable - taking away the smell of familiarity.
She was left in the streets with her best half.
She lived hidden away from evil men, hidden from those not so evil but with a thirst for vengeance that made them undoubtedly even more dangerous.
She hid for years, until HYDRA and her false promises found her. Manipulated for years, she was the faithful toy of their experiments until the air of redemption, and of revenge that for years had been hoisted, finally fell.
Taking the evil behind Ultron with them.
Leaving Sokovia in pieces and broken hearts.
Leaving her without him. Without her best half. Without that voice, his kindness, the familiarity of her brother, her twin. Her protector and her only true friend.
Her heart screams when she thinks of him. Pietro.
Her heart screams for many things, but above all - for him.
Her loss left her feeling empty.
And it’s a feeling that Wanda constantly fights.
The crazy Avengers who share a house with her do nothing but help her, support her and be strong for her, so Wanda can move forward.
They are the light that the world has to offer for people like her.
Sam and Rodhey are focused on their football conversation when it happens.
Her eyes flicker a couple of times when she feels the soft touch of his mind, a collection of simple images, inviting her to come closer, to look closely. To sink into the complexity and depth of his mind.
Her hands rest on the table, wanting to exert pressure, as if such an act could serve as the main distractor to make her want to forget about entering Vision's mind.
Forget about wanting to get lost in the network of neurological - synthetic layers, plus the fundamental essence of the stone of the mind that makes him what it is.
She can't deny that curiosity settled in her from the first moment she saw him.
Her mind opened like butterfly wings, wanting to fly in the free and new field that was his mind.
Since then, she hasn't wanted to do anything other than read his mind, get involved with him, understand him, analyze him.
It's an attraction like that of the moth to the flame, only in this case, her mind is the naughty moth that seeks to burn in the blinding and brilliant flame that is Vision's mind.
She mentally scolds herself for that.
In no way is it political or correct to invade the privacy of people - or droids with souls, in his case - to get involved in their minds, she will no do it.
No! Wanda Maximoff has learned her lesson.
No matter how much she wants to read Vision's mind, she will not.
The sound of wolf whistles around her are strong enough to stop her inner monologue and concentrate on her companions. But when she comes to herself, what she finds leaves her speechless. Tony Stark walks with his usual charisma, greeting everyone as if he were the Queen of England, until he drops into one of the armchairs with a ridiculously dramatic gesture. Usual Tony.
However, that isn't what’s taken away her speech. It’s him.
Vision - looking like a typical magazine model.
Her mouth opens and closes as she details his appearance.
The white designer shirt he wears fits correctly to his torso, leaving two of the buttons free so that centimeters of his crimson skin are visible. Wanda swallows at the sight. Over it, the black leather jacket makes his arms look even heavier than they already are.
It's hard not to notice that detail. Like the length of the android's legs. Who would know they were so long and toned?
Black designer trousers prove that point perfectly.
She should, at this point, stop looking at him. But honestly - she can't.
His outfit is complemented by a pair of black sneakers with a gold border, and a pair of designer glasses.
"Looking good, red boy!" Rodhey says with a grin, then he whistles.
Wanda nods at that comment. Her eyes haven’t left the android. He really looks great.
"The new and sexy robot!" Sam teases, hitting the table in front of him, a signal of support.
Wanda laughs. She can feel the bubbling flicker of Vision's mind. He's nervous.
Nervous and in search of approval from his peers.
"What a handsome one!" The Widow throws an easy and charming smile in his direction. The crimson of his cheeks only deepens.
Is Vision flushed? Can that be possible?
"Can sunglasses be worn indoors?" The captain asks, slightly confused.
Wanda sighs. It's Steve, after all.
"Yeah! He looks absolutely smashing, " Tony grins, wildly amused that Vision actually let him dress him like this.
"Can we have dinner, or will everyone continue to ogle Vision? I mean, there are parents present here," Stark mocks, raising his hand on his chest in a gesture of self-denial.
Nat clicks her tongue, smiling, patting Vision's shoulder, politely asking him to sit.
Vision accepts and everyone follows his example.
All except for Wanda, who remains terribly stuck in the same place.
No one seems to notice, other than Tony Stark and his ridiculous wit.
"PG 13, kid," he mocks with his unmistakable signature smile, stopping next to her. "Stop ogling my boy."
Wanda ignores Tony's sarky comment and possible attempt to lead the conversation into safer territories. "He looks happy," she whispers softly.
Tony shrugs. "Of course he is! "
She nods, managing to free her mind at full speed and moves away from Tony.
"But I think the words you're looking for to describe Vision are ‘sexy as hell.’"
Wanda looks at him, then swallows, feeling the sharp answer on the tip of her tongue, but the brunette-haired man is quick to respond. "You say ‘thank you, Tony.’" He winks.
She clicks her tongue in reproach when Tony steps away from her and walks away. There’s a surprised expression on her face, which she is trying to control, but to her own misfortune she's failing miserably.
She hates him, but he is right.
Vision looks sexy as hell.
And she hadn't noticed.
The dinner takes place amid laughter, funny comments and sports news.
It also happens between the sidelong glances that Vision almost imperceptibly gives the young Avenger; the playful smile that doesn’t leave Tony's lips, which somehow makes Natasha's nerves stand on end, not to mention the said Avenger’s ashamed face. Wanda doesn't look up more than three times in the whole dinner. That's weird!
Even more strange is that Stark has that smile that screams ‘I'm innocent!’ And that ignites the alarms in Nat's mind.
Tony’s up to something, and she'll find out sooner or later what it is.
"I have a feeling that things are going to get interesting," Tony says with a secret smile.
She narrows her eyes at him.
"I guess we should thank you for not using golden clothes - with your crazy tendency to love red and gold, you could have ended up turning Vision into another one of your personalized mannequins."
"Aww geez, thanks, Nat!"
Hours later, Wanda finds herself walking around the complex, her mind sufficiently restless to allow her to reconcile to some kind of rest.
Until the sound of a soft melody echoes in her mind.
It envelops her in a calming and safe sensation.
Wanda smiles, automatically walking towards the fountain.
The rhythmic notes, full of history, surround the room, welcoming her; however, she refuses to touch, to enter.
No, she definitely doesn't want to enter Vision’s room.
Much less today.
She’s about to turn around when the door opens.
She sighs, and Vision raises his head, giving her one of those sweet smiles, which he in his own innocent way possesses.
She finds herself responding in kind.
"You wear silk pajamas?" she asks, then wants to kick herself for it. How silly did that sounde
She rushes to correct herself before Vision’s questioning look. "You're Stark's pampered boy! Look at you - designer pants, designer glasses, and now silk pajamas."
"I have acquired a new wardrobe thanks to Mr. Stark, who kindly offered to help me."
She nods. She was sure Tony was at the centre of everything.
"Why do you need a new wardrobe?"
"It has come to my attention that my old clothes made me look like a horrible librarian from the 80s."
Wanda laughs, she really does.
At her side, Vision tenses, misunderstanding her reaction.
When her laughter dies down, she kindly explains.
"Your previous clothes make you look great. Comfortable," Wanda admits with a simple smile. "Like home,"she whispers softly. "I liked them."
She could swear that he's blushing with the compliment.
She hops on one foot, and then the other.
Vision doesn't stop looking at her. His mouth opens, but no words come out. Or so she believes.
"Would you like to enter my room? I am listening to classical music. I find it particularly pleasant."
She smiles, and he steps aside, allowing her to enter his room.
Vision's room is similar to all the rooms in the complex; equipped with a single bed, bedside table and a bookcase. The difference lies in the lack of personal accessories. There is only a series of books with varied titles on the bookshelf, a photo of Tony accompanied by a beautiful woman with red hair and another robust man she does not know by the bedside table. The three smile broadly at the camera.
They must be important in some way for Vision. She supposes.
There is also a green teddy bear with purple pants occupying the center of the bed, much to Wanda's surprise. A clear reference to Bruce.
Wanda smiles at the detail.
Vision, who has stood stoically by the door, blinks at her.
He doesn't know what to do. Well, neither does she.
He’s probably never had a girl in his room, she thinks with a smile curling her lips.
And that reminds her how innocent and new Vision is in this world. It also reminds her of something important.
"You okay?" You left very quickly the other day," Wanda elaborates.
Now, he doesn’t dare to look at her. Something makes his brain go blank. She can see that. Wait, what happens? she wonders.
"I worry about you. "
His gaze suddenly slides from that spot on the ground and stops at her. His eyes are warm, kind when he speaks.
"I apologize if I caused you concern; it was not my intention at all," he says timidly. "My systems were working in a way I did not understand."
Vision denies with his head. "I do not know, but I am going to find out."
"Good! We can't have you without understanding your systems around here," she jokes.
He smiles warmly and she ignores the tightening in her chest.
For a week it’s become a kind of routine to share much of her nights in the company of Vision, listening to the quiet melody that somehow seems to let go of her nightmares and lets her sleep peacefully.
It's also nice to spend time with him.
Although sometimes they remain completely silent, his mere presence is comforting.
However, there is a particular issue that has occupied her mind lately.
At first, it made him look completely different, sexy. Now they make him look like someone who he's clearly not.
Flannels of Sabbath, AC / DC, Iron Maiden, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin have become fixtures in his wardrobe.
Pants, incredibly stuck, scruffy and even ripped, along with ridiculously expensive shirts are still in order.
And that irritates her even more.
Wanda is sure that Vision doesn't know any of these artists or brands or feels comfortable with the clothes he wears.
He's just Stark’s cute doll to play dress-up with.
The situation only gets worse when Vision greets her looking like a faithful copy of Tony Stark.
"Are you serious?" she snorts, exasperated. "Let’s go."
"Go where?" Vision tilts his head innocently, obviously surprised.
"To buy you clothes, of course," Wanda laughs, grabbing Vision's hesitant hand as they walk to the clothing store Natasha mentioned on previous occasions.
Wanda smiles warmly, guiding Vision into the clothing store with a soft hand on his arm.
"Good afternoon! My name is Melissa." A blonde woman appears before them. “I have had the pleasure of helping other Avengers choose their clothes before. I hope to be able to help this time."
"Don't be nervous," Wanda says with a smile. "The idea is that you wear clothes that you feel comfortable with and be yourself, Vision. "
He agrees, trusting in her. After all, she is the expert in this situation.
Wanda talks to the woman (Melissa) about his clothing preferences for a few minutes. He agrees every time one of them asks him something.
"Here are some clothes that I actually think would look great and still make you look like the Vision we all know," Wanda smiles as she places a pile of clothes in the chair of the fitting room.
Vision takes his time trying on everything, picking two tops, two bottoms, and a pair of shoes; his choice wasn't so much based on the style of the clothes, but rather in their comfortable feel. He really liked one outfit in particular: very simple flannel pants and elegant dark blue cashmere sweater.
He smiles as he opened the door, excitedly anticipating Wanda's reaction.
"I think you look really cute in this one! " Wanda gives him a sweet smile.
"We'll take these?"
"Of course we will, did you have to ask?" Wanda shakes her head, chuckling.
Five minutes later
Wanda takes the cup of coffee that Melissa has obtained to Vision (choosing to ignore the order that the young lady had given her).
He gives it a sip when his eyes settle on the written line and the name written below. His lips form a thin line as she turns the cup towards him.
Was that an earthquake or did you just rock my world?
Confusion crosses his mind, reading the writing again.
He does not believe that such a natural disaster has occurred.
They haven’t reported anything about it in the recent news.
And why would she leave him a number? Does she belong to Civil Protection?
But the most disconcerting thing about the whole thing is Wanda's expression. A large furrow covers her brows while her mouth closes stiffly.
An expression that only lasts a few seconds before she is talking bubbly again with him.
"OMG! She just gave you a pick-up line, Vision. The librarian's clothes! Of course they work on you!" Wanda points as one understood in the matter.
However, a single question is generated in his mind, intriguing enough to escape from his lips. "What is a pick-up line?"
Wanda laughs. "A silly phrase that a girl or boy gives to another, to flirt, or in some cases, to joke." She shrugs. "It's a form of expression that also serves to try to bring someone you like to...”
Her cheeks blush deeply.
She looks away. The blush is still deep on her face. She looks even more beautiful than usual as her hand carries a strand of hair away from her face and tucks it behind her right ear.
"Never mind. Come on, time to go home," she says, taking his hand in hers as she ends the matter.
The only thing he can think about is the heat that invades his hand and spreads to his chest.
A week later, when the training is over, Wanda decides it's time to clean up and rest a bit.
She walks with slow steps towards her room.
She opens the door and casually throws herself on her bed.
Her eyes close momentarily; then open to find a bag from a clothing store on her dresser.
She quickly gets up, curiosity filling her body, to open it.
Laughter escapes from her lips when she holds a pair of scarlet socks accompanied by a white card with a single written phrase.
We're not socks. But I think we'd make a great pair.
That phrase has her smiling all the blessed day.
You already know what to do.
If you take the time to read, please take time to comment.
Let me know what you think.
I hope you are with me in this story. There is a fun trip to tell.