“This feels like Billy’s fault,” Kate says. Her mouth moves weirdly when she speaks, and when she moves her hair slides weirdly over her shoulders. If she still has shoulders.
“Could be Loki,” America suggests grimly. Her I’m-going-to-fucking-punch-everything expression is rendered surprisingly accurately on her now two-dimensional face.
“Could be,” Kate agrees, “but Billy could’ve been trying to recreate a beloved childhood memory for Teddy or something. I don’t think they have Lego on Asgard.”
That’s what’s happened, by the way. Everything Kate looks at, including herself, is currently made of Lego. The weirdest part of what’s turning into a pretty weird morning is that it doesn’t feel weird; right now, it feels oddly natural that Kate’s made of plastic, and her features are painted on, and her hands are-
“Holy shit!” Kate regrets looking at her hands. She doesn’t have fingers anymore, just these sort-of claw things that don’t move.
“We didn’t have Lego where I grew up,” America remarks, conversational; she’s taking this all much better than Kate is. Kate wonders if it’s okay that she still finds America attractive, even like this; hopefully it’s her new Lego-brain, not a very specific fetish that she didn’t know about until today.
“Billy and Teddy made us watch that movie,” Kate offers.
“Yeah,” America says, painted face creasing, “they did.”
Kate looks sadly back down at her claw hands. She just painted her nails, not that you can tell, with her lack of fingers. She probably doesn’t have toes anymore either.
Ignoring America’s sound of amusement, Kate bends over to look at the little painted blocks on the end of her legs. “Aww, feet,” she says. “That’s a thirty-dollar pedicure wasted.”
“You’ve got sunglasses painted on your face,” America remarks, still casual, “if you hadn’t noticed that.”
Kate claws at her face with her weird not-hands; everything makes a sort of soft clicking sound as she does. It isn’t reassuring.
“Do I even have eyes under these?” she asks. “I think my eyes might be sunglasses now. Oh my God I think I’m hysterical.”
America, who’s been studying a nearby fire hydrant, spins and plants a little black-painted foot into it.
It explodes into cracked pieces and also a bunch of little gold and silver Lego studs.
“Huh,” Kate says, picking one up. It’s shiny, and also inexplicable. Fire hydrants don’t explode into shiny coin things when you kick them in the real world, or this city would have even more criminals than it already does. “Are you going to get in trouble for that?”
America tries to shrug, and manages some kind of movement that sort of approximates it. “I’m investigating,” she says.
“You’re enjoying this,” Kate accuses.
America laughs, and that sound hasn’t changed, at least. “It’s new,” she says, “it’s different.”
“You’re saying that like it’s a good thing,” Kate says, putting the shiny Lego stud back on the ground again. A thought occurs to her. “Assuming this is at least city-wide, isn’t this, like, hella copyright infringement?”
America makes a disinterested noise and Kate has to lunge forward to stop her from kicking another fire hydrant. Every time either of them moves, the plastic clicky noise comes back, but she’s getting kind of used to it. Kate’s hand slides ineffectually down America’s plastic arm, but then she discovers she can turn it and her plastic claw hand can fit inside America’s plastic claw hand. They can totally hold hands!
“Sweet,” she says, and the happy feeling lasts until she tries to kiss America and all they get is a sound of plastic hitting plastic, and nothing happens. “Dammit, Kaplan,” Kate mutters.
“We need to find him,” America decides. “Or Loki, I bet Loki can fix this.”
“I bet Loki’s enjoying this,” Kate huffs, as they head down the street, every step clicking. People driving Lego vehicles pass occasionally; Kate wonders if they’ve noticed anything’s out of the ordinary yet.
“Maybe I can kick his head off,” America muses, but with that weird fondness she has for Loki that nobody examines, where they’re sort of friends, and sort of mortal enemies who go for pho a couple of times a month.
“Less with the kicking,” Kate says, “at least until we know if this is permanent.”
It doesn’t help that everything looks so… dismantleable. Kate totally wants to start peeling the world apart around them, and the more they walk the greater the urge to pull everything into bricks grows.
“Fine,” America allows, but she’s smiling, and Kate is suspicious that she might be humming Everything Is Awesome, but she’s not going to ask and check, because she’s not sure what to do with that information. “We find out who did this, and then we kick stuff.”
“Seems legit,” Kate agrees, trying to work out if she has a little plastic cellphone somewhere and if it’s going to work if she does. A thought occurs to her. “Oh god, do you think Clint’s made of Lego somewhere? Because he’s not going to cope well with that.”
“Clint doesn’t cope well with anything,” America says, not inaccurately, “but I’m sure his now-plastic dog can look after him.”
Kate tries to picture that, and can’t without a small part of her brain exploding. “Billy owes us so much when this is over,” she says. “And I swear, if he’s been trying to recreate that Community episode with the stop-motion animation but in another medium to cheer Teddy up, I will kill him.”
“You know I don’t understand like two-thirds of your pop culture references, right?” America responds, but she’s still holding Kate’s hand, or whatever approximation of it they’re managing right now, and the sun is shining in a clean-looking and literally shiny New York City, so what the hell.
Some part of Kate starts vibrating, and she pulls her phone out of nowhere in particular, which is alarming, but useful. She wonders what else she has on her without knowing.
“KATE!” Clint yells, “KATE, MY EYES ARE PAINTED-ON SUNGLASSES!”
Well, that answers some questions, anyway.
Kate sighs. “Join the club,” she tells him.