ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This story fills a square on my second card for the [community profile] cottoncandy_bingo fest. This fest encourages people to create and share material focused on what is variously called fluff, schmoop, gentle fiction, light reading, comfort reading, positive thinking, chicken soup for the soul, or anything else that offers a fun alternative to usual run of sex, violence, and angst of modern media. I'm hoping to attract some new readers for my writing.

The following story belongs to Schrodinger's Heroes, featuring an apocryphal television show supported by an imaginary fandom. It's science fiction about quantum physics and saving the world from alternate dimensions. It features a very mixed cast in terms of ethnicity and sexual orientation. This project developed with input from multiple people, and it's open for everyone to play in. You can read more about the background, the characters, and a bunch of assorted content on the menu page.

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3Part 4Part 5.  This is a crossover with the Hulk from The Avengers. So it doesn't match up exactly with the various Hulk movies, and Bruce Banner is played by Mark Ruffalo. The story goes into alternate-universe mode after the lab accident while Bruce is running from General Ross but before Bruce meets any of the Avengers.


Fandom: Hulk / The Avengers / Original (Schrodinger's Heroes)
Prompt: Safe
Medium: Story
Summary: Bruce Banner, on the run in America, seeks help from his college lab partner Alex. She is not happy that people have left him in such a shabby state, and decides to get more involved than Bruce intended.
Content Notes: Hurt/comfort. Angst. Advanced science. Bruce and Alex are science buddies. Fragile!Bruce. Protective!Alex. Cuddling. Teamwork. Ross!whump. Safe ending.


"Safe Keeping" Part 6


"Leave the dimension," Bruce said, "and go ... where?"

"We could find one very similar to this," Morgan said. "Alex ran a search like that to find me, after her Morgan died in a car crash."

"What parameters would you want, hypothetically speaking?" Alex asked.

"I don't know. Give me some examples?" Bruce said.

"Well, dimensions where you don't already exist, for starters," Alex said. "Also dimensions without General Ross -- where he already died, or was never born. Dimensions where we have a Teflon Tesseract like this, so we can help keep you safe. That sort of thing."

Ash tapped at her laptop, following the list.

"I need somewhere I can continue my research," Bruce said.

"That comes with the Tef," Alex said.

"Dimensions where Betty Ross is alive and single?" Bruce said tentatively. "If I can fix this, I'd like to see her again someday."

"If you move to a dimension where you're not being hunted, you could invite her to help. She was your lab partner, after all," Morgan said.

Bruce shook his head. "I don't want to drag her into this mess. Besides, she probably wouldn't want me ... like this."

"Then she doesn't deserve you," Alex said.

"Don't you talk about her that way!" Bruce snapped.

"Sorry," Alex said.

"Just don't underestimate Betty, even alter!Betty," said Pat. "Give her a chance to meet you and decide whether to help. Avoiding all potential for conflict will, first, leave you running for the rest of your life; and, second, greatly reduce your quality of life."

"For me, conflict now tends to end with hulking great holes in the wall," Bruce said.

"Then you'll need to work on that," Pat said firmly.

Ash's laptop chirped. "I've sent the parameters to Tim in the control room. We're searching nearby vectors for a possible match," she said. Alex motioned for Ash to pass over the laptop, which Ash did. Alex typed something and handed it back.

Bruce was watching Morgan, not Ash. He leaned a little away from Alex and asked, "What's it ... like?"

"It hurts, leaving your home dimension and everyone you ever knew, but sometimes it's better than the alternatives," Morgan said gravely.

"Oh," said Bruce. He leaned back against Alex.

"It's an excellent opportunity, though," Quinn said.

"Think logically about your options and your goals," Bailey said. "Work the problem just like you would in the lab."

"Don't forget to consult your feelings," Pat said. "You need to feel secure with whatever you choose."

"Good advice," Ash said, working on her laptop again. "We're starting to see some matches here ... not too bad ... oh! That one looks great."

"Alex? What do you think?" Bruce asked.

He was warm and solid in her grasp, and she wished that she could keep him there. She answered honestly anyhow. "I think it's a good plan," she said, though her throat crimped around the words. "I value you as a friend, Bruce, and I'd hate to see you go ... but I want you alive and happy more than I want you with me. You deserve to live without being hunted, and jumping dimensions would enable that. This is where it all started. Too many people know too much here. Somewhere else, you could have a fresh start. If I need to send you away for safe keeping, then that's what I'll do."

"I just ... don't know," Bruce said. "At least here I've got contacts, I know some places to go, I can draw on my prior experience ..."

"Much of that carries over," Morgan assured him. "The languages will be the same, along with most of the terrain and structures. All the laws of physics will be the same, so your experience still applies."

Bruce stared at him. "The laws of physics can't change!"

Everyone laughed. "We turned into cats, remember?" said Chris.

"The laws of physics may not change, but our understanding of them seems to be incomplete in the face of recently acquired data," Morgan said.

"Yeah, I know how that goes," Bruce said. "I'm still trying to figure out how I could possibly gain about a ton in a few seconds."

"That almost has to be energy-to-mass conversion," Alex said.

"But there's no energy source," Bruce argued.

"You said that you took a direct hit from a gamma burst that should have killed you," Alex said. "Supposed it didn't go through you and out the back. Suppose it went inside you, into a pocket universe somehow, and it manifests like that periodically?"

"So he's kind of like a quasar with an erratic cycle ..." Morgan said.

Bruce tilted his head. "That ... could be worth running a simulation," Bruce said.

"Ah, we're doing it again, going off on a tangent. I'll miss that," Alex said.

"So will I," Bruce said.

"No, you can still do that with alter!Alex. I know, she won't have my memories of spending time with you, but Bruce -- she's still me. She's just me in another world, another life. All you have to do is activate a friendship that's already a proven match. So I've written her a note asking her to take care of you for me, and I'll send it if you decide to go through with this."

"It does work," Morgan said. "This team isn't my first team, but we're all still 'ohana. I'm not even the same sex as their Morgan, and my life back there got a lot more messed up, but I fit right in here anyway."

* * * 

Notes:

'ohana -- Hawai'ian for "family," both by blood and by choice.


[To be concluded in Part 7 ...]

(no subject)

Date: 2012-11-27 02:45 pm (UTC)
sylvaine: Dark-haired person with black eyes & white pupils. ([marvel] Hulk/Iron Man OTP)
From: [personal profile] sylvaine
I'm really enjoying this fic. <3

(no subject)

Date: 2012-11-28 01:34 am (UTC)
siliconshaman: black cat against the moon (Default)
From: [personal profile] siliconshaman
I keep forgetting this isn't a real show.. I almost started looking for a torrent of the 'original' show today! Your fictional fandom fan-fic is very compelling...

Re: Well...

Date: 2012-11-30 05:47 am (UTC)
technoshaman: (writing)
From: [personal profile] technoshaman
I'm conscious that the show isn't real... but the characters *are* real; I'm getting to know them as separate entities, even though they only exist between our ears...

All things *are* possible. I've personally watched half a dozen people go from dreaming the dream to actually holding professional hardcopy in their hands. (Damn, that's fun! they get *so excited* the first time... :) I don't know - personally - anybody that's sold a TV contract yet, but I'm thinking with one of'em, it's a matter of time....

And even if it doesn't happen? I for one am not gonna get tired of seeing you talk story.

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