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Operation 'The Incredible Sulk'

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FRIEND BRUCE, I HAVE NOTICED OF LATE THAT YOU APPEAR TO BE UNDER SOME STRESS. CAN I ASSIST IN ANY WAY?

- Thor

 

You’re very observant. What gave it away? The fact I single-handedly destroyed Connecticut last weekend or the way I now only have one pair of unripped trousers in my closet?

- Bruce

 

YOU DID NOT EAT YOUR CROISSANT AT BREAKFAST TODAY, NOR YESTERDAY.

- Thor

 

That would do it, yeah.

- Bruce

 

I WOULD LIKE TO TELL YOU SOME TRADITIONAL ASGARDIAN JOKES BY WAY OF RETURNING YOU TO A STATE OF MERRIMENT.

- Thor

 

That’s not necessary, really. I’ll just blow something up. I’ll be fine. Really.

- Bruce

 

WHY DID ODIN KILL THE LITTLE BOY?

- Thor

 

Oh Jesus. I don’t know, why?

- Bruce

 

BECAUSE HE WAS A FROST GIANT.

- Thor

 

Not seeing the punchline to that one. Sorry. Maybe try another one?

- Bruce

 

BUT THAT IS ONE OF OUR FINEST, MOST HUMOROUS JOKES!

- Thor

 

ALL RIGHT. HERE IS ANOTHER; WHY DID ODIN KILL THE MAIDSERVANT?

- Thor

 

Hmm. I don’t know. Tell me.

- Bruce

 

BECAUSE SHE WAS A FROST GIANT.

- Thor

 

Is that really what passes for humour on Asgard? Wow. Could you try one more joke? For research purposes?

- Bruce

 

THAT IS NOT MY PURPOSE, BUT I SHALL ACQUIESCE. WHY DID ODIN KILL THE MERCHANT?

- Thor

 

Because he was a frost giant?

- Bruce

 

FRIEND BRUCE, I THINK YOU HAVE HEARD THESE JOKES BEFORE! HO, WHAT A JOKE YOU HAVE PLAYED ON ME!

- Thor

 

I’m going to meditate for a bit. Thanks, Thor. Hawaii might be safe tonight.

- Bruce

 

NOT IF ODIN FINDS A FROST GIANT IN ITS PRESENCE!

- Thor

 

I get it.

- Bruce

 

*

 

Steve, you stand tall and proud for the American dream, right?

- Tony

 

Yeeees, why?

- Steve

 

Does that mean you’d support me if I slammed my face into a three-tiered cake?

- Tony

 

What?

- Steve

 

It wouldn’t have to be a wedding cake or anything. I could just buy three jam sponges or something and pile them on top of one another.

- Tony

 

I don’t understand. Take me back a few steps?

- Steve

 

Cake.

- Tony

 

It’s been a month, Steve.

- Tony

 

Twenty-nine cakeless days.

- Tony

 

Ah. Fury’s put you on some sort of diet, hasn’t he?

- Steve

 

A diet? Is that what you want to call it? It’s TORTURE, that’s what it is! Think I’d rather be water-boarded than deprived of my true love for any longer.

- Tony

 

And see, you can’t tell me off for that, because you’re away too! I could have meant you!

- Tony

 

Nice try, Stark, but I’ve long since resigned myself to playing second fiddle to your love affair with meringue.

- Steve

 

It’s true. You are essentially my mistress.

- Tony

 

You flatter me. Why has Fury insisted on a diet, anyway? You aren’t THAT out of shape, are you? I’ve only been gone six weeks!

- Steve

 

And every hour has felt like a year!

- Tony

 

Tony.

- Steve

 

Mmmmmmm?

- Tony

 

You’ve been comfort eating again, haven’t you?

- Steve

 

Maybe a little.

- Tony

 

Define ‘a little’.

- Steve

 

Well, really. I don’t consider eighteen profiteroles, two large pizzas, a cherry pie and a chocolate gateau to be excessive, do you? I mean, Thor eats that in an hour! It took me at least two.

- Tony

 

I’m going to ask them to cut this mission short. Captain Britain’s a bore to be around anyway; all monarchy and no freedom.

- Steve

 

Bring me back some scones, would you? There’s a doll.

- Tony

 

No.

- Steve

 

*

 

TONY! IT IS MOST EXCELLENT TO HEAR FROM YOU AGAIN!

- Thor

 

You texted me, big guy, not the other way round. What can I do for you?

- Tony

 

IT IS ABOUT OUR FRIEND, BRUCE.

- Thor

 

What about him? You’re going to have to be more specific than that. With Bruce, it could be anything. Has he sat on a city again?

- Tony

 

NAY. HE IS MOST UNHAPPY. HE DID NOT EVEN RESPOND TO MY ATTEMPTS TO LIGHTEN HIS DARK MOODS. I FEAR HE HAS BEEN CURSED WITH DARK, DARK MAGIC!

- Thor

 

How did you try and cheer him up, exactly? I think we can get to the root of this problem quite quickly.

- Tony

 

I REGALED HIM WITH MUCH HUMOUR, OF COURSE! I TOLD HIM SOME OF ASGARD’S MOST LIGHT-HEARTED JOKES!

- Thor

 

Which ones? Remind me. I’ve only heard the one about Odin and the frost giant. Or was there two about that? Maybe six. I forget.

- Tony

 

IT WAS THE ONE ABOUT ODIN AND THE FROST GIANT, INDEED!

- Thor

 

Ha! That one was excellent, really. The best of a pretty hilarious bunch. I can’t believe he didn’t laugh. Did you ask what was wrong?

- Tony

 

TO NO AVAIL, FRIEND TONY.

- Thor

 

Hmm. I’ll drop by later with some Barium, see if that doesn’t lighten his spirits.

- Tony

 

THANK YOU. YOUR KIND HEARTEDNESS IS MUCH APPRECIATED.

- Thor

 

If I had a penny for every time I heard that, I wouldn’t be America’s richest man.

- Tony

 

*

 

Tash

- Clint

 

Tash

- Clint

 

Tash

- Clint

 

Tash

- Clint

 

You know those seagulls in Finding Nemo? That’s you, Barton. That’s your future.

- Natasha

 

Aw, don’t be like that. I’ve sent you eighteen texts today and this is the only way to get you to reply.

- Clint

 

Hang on, are you saying I’m a seagull? I’m a hawk!

- Clint

 

More of a pigeon, if you ask me.

- Natasha

 

That hurts, Tash. That really hurts.

- Clint

 

You think you know pain? Keep texting me and see how your kneecaps feel.

- Natasha

 

Was that the doorbell? I think that was the doorbell. Good talk. Thanks Tash!

- Clint

 

*

 

To   : Pepper Potts, Steve Rogers, Clint Barton, Natasha Romanoff

From   : Tony Stark

Subject   : The Incredible Sulk

Hey, gang. This is a very important message, so you may have noticed that I’ve disabled all your devices from working until you read it (to the end, Barton). Basically, our good friend and resident second most intelligent Avenger, Bruce, is in a bit of a downer. Thor’s already tried cheering him up with the one joke he knows – you’ll all have heard it, but you’ve probably blanked it from your memory. The brain does that with traumatic things on occasion – so under NO circumstances are you to forward this e-mail to him.

Basically, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to cheer Bruce the fuck up. The person who actually manages it will win a prize of their choice. Remember that I am a man of incredible wealth and considerable good looks. The prize is sure to be fabulous.

May the challenge begin! Help him, Obi Wan Kenobi, you’re his only hope.

 

To   : Tony Stark

From   : Pepper Potts

Subject   : The Incredible Sulk

Oh, it is ON, young Padawan. It. Is. On.

 

*

 

Steve?

- Tony

 

Yes, Tony?

- Steve

 

Would you rather be a flying fish or a flying squirrel?

- Tony

 

Those are things that exist?

- Steve

 

Yes, Steve. They are. They are beautiful creatures. True examples of the glorious work of our creator. Anyway, which would you rather be? Time’s a’ ticking!

- Tony

 

It’s not something I’ve ever really thought about, to be honest.

- Steve

 

So think! Personally, I’d rather be a flying fish. All the beauty of that underwater world, sexy mermaids in shell bras AND the ability to fly. Sounds like a good deal to me. You?

- Tony

 

A flying squirrel.

- Steve

 

Why? Squirrels suck.

- Tony

 

Oh, I see. It’s your affinity for small, adorable creatures, seeing as they’re what’s closest to you on the evolutionary scale.

- Tony

 

Is that supposed to be a compliment?

- Steve

 

It’s just a statement of fact. You can choose to see it as flattery if you wish.

- Tony

 

Hmm.

- Steve

 

Steve?

- Tony

 

Yes, Tony?

- Steve

 

Would you rather be a howler monkey or a baboon?

- Tony

 

Go to sleep, Tony. I’ll be back in the morning.

- Steve

 

I’ll note down your answer as ‘ambivalent’, shall I?

- Tony

 

Goodnight, Tony.

- Steve

 

‘Night, Steve.

- Tony

 

*

 

Bruce! I was just wondering if you maybe wanted to come to an art show with me on the weekend? It’s been a long time since I went to one – well, it’s been seventy years, actually! – and I’m trying to get a few people together to go with me. Would you be interested?

- Steve

 

I’m really not into art, Steve. I’m more of a chemistry set kid. Thanks, though.

- Bruce

 

OK :(

- Steve

 

Puppy-dog eyes don’t work through text, Rogers. Not even texts from you.

- Bruce

 

:(

- Steve

 

Steve.

- Bruce

 

:( :(

- Steve

 

What time is it on?

- Bruce

 

*

 

Bruce is coming to the art show with me! I’ll accept my prize now.

- Steve

 

An art show? Jesus, Steve, I said to cheer him up, not drive him to suicide.

- Tony

 

Everyone likes art, don’t they?

- Steve

 

Bruce couldn’t tell the Mona Lisa from Hugh Hefner’s backside. What was your prize going to be, out of curiosity?

- Tony

 

Oh. I see. Your hand is dangerously close to – oh, well, if that’s the case, you win, Rogers. Y’opeti wi’n

- Tony           

 

*

 

Hey, Bruce. Just sending you a quick text to ask if you wanted to maybe shoot some hoops in Tony’s basement later? He’s got his own basketball court, it’s awesome.

- Clint

 

‘Shoot hoops’? Why would I want to do that? Especially with a guy whose aim is officially too good to actually be measured.

- Bruce

 

I don’t know, it’s something guys do, isn’t it? A bit of male bonding, you know? Mano-a-mano.

- Clint

 

That means ‘hand to hand’, Clint. Not ‘man to man’. Common misconception. And thanks for the offer, but I’m kind of busy. Experiments don’t run themselves!

- Bruce

 

I really think you should do it. Really. You’ll feel much better.

- Clint

 

Who says I feel bad as it is?

- Bruce

 

Oops.

- Clint

 

This is Thor, isn’t it? He’s put you up to this, as the peppy team cheerleader. Right. I see how it is.

- Bruce

 

It wasn’t Thor!

- Clint

 

Bruce?

- Clint

 

BRUCE?

- Clint

 

Fuck.

- Clint

 

*

 

Hey, dude. Just an FYI that an angry Bruce might be on his way to you in a few minutes. Sorry, bud.

- Clint

 

FYI? WHAT IS AN FYI AND WHERE CAN I ACQUIRE ONE?

- Thor

 

I just told you that a huge green hunk of rage is on its way to kick your ass and you focus on my use of acronyms? Hide, you idiot!!

- Clint

 

Thor?

- Clint

 

THOR?!

- Clint

 

Oh God.

- Clint

 

YOU CALLED?

- Thor

 

I texted you TWICE.

- Clint

 

WAS THE ‘GOD’ TEXT NOT IN REFERENCE TO ME ALSO?

- Thor

 

Oh Jesus, help me.

- Clint

 

WHY DO YOU MIDGARDIANS KEEP REFERRING TO THIS JESUS? I HAVE TOLD YOU ONCE IF NOT A THOUSAND TIMES; HE IS NOT OF ASGARD.

- Thor

 

No, he’s not insane enough to pay you guys a visit up there. Clint out.

- Clint

 

*

 

So, Thor just phoned me.

- Pepper

 

He did? I didn’t know he needed a phone. His voice really carries.

- Natasha

 

Ha! I know, right? Anyway, apparently Bruce is after him. He thinks this whole cheer-up-the-green-gilled-scientist was his idea.

- Pepper

 

Well, that’s ludicrous. Like Thor’s ever had an idea.

- Natasha

 

Don’t be so harsh, Natasha. Windows 7 was his idea too, you know.

- Pepper

 

Word. Want to get a manicure later and discuss the stupidity of men?

- Natasha

 

Sure, if you promise never to say ‘word’ again.

- Pepper

 

In any context? That may be difficult. I’d have to resort to violence far more often.

- Natasha

 

Word.

- Pepper

 

*

 

Banner, if you get this text, respond immediately. It’s urgent.

- Fury

 

Consider this my response.

- Bruce

 

Are you available for some field work next weekend? It’s a handjob mission.

- Fury

 

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and you’re asking me why?!?!?!

- Bruce

 

Motherfucker! HARD mission. Damn phone. Can you do it?

- Fury

 

The mission, not the... other thing.

- Fury

 

I don’t know if I’ll have stopped laughing by then.

- Bruce

 

It’s not fanny, Banner.

- Fury

 

DAMNIT. FUNNY.

- Fury

 

Oh Lord, it really is. Please describe the mission to me in detail.

- Bruce

 

It involves two asses, trained by secret masseuses. They want to defecate the President. As you can smell, it’s virile that we’re vasectomy in copulating these enemas.

- Fury

 

Banner?

- Fury

 

Fuck it.

- Fury

 

*

 

To   : Thor, Pepper Potts, Natasha Romanoff, Tony Stark, Steve Rogers

From   : Bruce Banner

Subject   : The world is a beautiful place

Attachment   : Autocorrect-fail-Fury.jpg

Hey, guys.

Firstly, let me apologize for being in such a grump lately. It gets you down, you know, when you transform and rip your favourite dark blue shirt. If anyone – I’m looking at you, Tony – wants to take me on a shopping trip later, be my guest.

Anyway, I feel much better now. If you want to see why, just look at the attached file.

No need to thank me.

See you soon!

- Bruce

 

ToBruce Banner

From : Tony Stark

Subject : Re: The world is a beautiful place

Oh my God, Banner, you win. Name your prize. 

 

 

ToTony Stark

From : Bruce Banner

Subject : Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

Peace and quiet?

 

 

ToBruce Banner

From : Tony Stark

Subject : Re: Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

I may be obscenely rich and sexually alluring, Banner, but I'm not a miracle worker. How does a week in the Carribean sound?

 

 

ToTony Stark

From : Bruce Banner

Subject : Re: Re: Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

Like Heaven. 

 

 

ToBruce Banner

From : Tony Stark

Subject : Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

You mean 'like Asgard'?

 

 

ToBruce Banner

From : Tony Stark

Subject : Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

Sorry. Have booked the tickets for next week. I'm assuming you turned down Fury's mission; I'd hate to think I'd prevented you in some way from attending your vasectomy.

 

 

ToTony Stark

From : Bruce Banner

Subject : Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The world is a beautiful place

You only booked a week, right? Is it too late to change my request to a decade?

 

*

 

MISS POTTS? IS IT SAFE FOR ME TO VENTURE OUT FROM UNDERNEATH YOUR SOFA NOW? VERILY, MY LEGS ARE BENT AT AN UNUSUAL ANGLE FOR AN ASGARDIAN.

- Thor

 

MISS POTTS?

- Thor

 

I DO APOLOGIZE FOR THE BLOOD ON YOUR CARPET, BY THE BY. IT WAS A NECESSARY BY-PRODUCT. 

- Thor

 

MISS POTTS?

- Thor

 

I SHALL JUST REMAIN HERE, THEN. 

- Thor