William Brandt is a good alias. Brandt's a good guy, loyal, nice. Easy-going, funny, follows orders.
Brandt's an easier identity than Clint Barton, that's for sure. Less enemies, too.
Not that that's hard, actually, come to think of it. Barton pisses people off just by breathing, sometimes, seems like.
Brandt's a good guy. He's gonna miss him.
"Welcome back, Agent Barton," Coulson says, wearing a bland smile. He can see the genuine pleasure there, though. It soothes some of the sting of having to kill Brandt. A little.
"Good to be back, sir," he lies, shoving all of Brandt to the file cabinet in the back of his mind, where all of the men he's been rest until he needs them again.
Brandt's team will look for him, he's sure. They know that death isn't always final, especially without a body.
"Agent Romanova is waiting at the range," Coulson tells him.
He nods, walking past Coulson. Brandt was a good shot, sure. But Brandt could never make a third of the shots Barton does, and he needs to shake this off. Why is it so hard?
Brandt was a lie. They're all lies. He hasn't been real since his parents died and he started playing this game.
Brandt is dead. Barton's alive. Simple as that.
He'll be Barton, until Barton has to die, too.
Easy as bull's-eye.