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With Friends Like These

Chapter Text

“Sir, I’m gonna have to ask you to exit the donut,” Director Fury of SHIELD shouted from the ground. Sir made a disgruntled noise but flew down. His vitals were not very good, according to Jarvis’ sensors. Unfortunately, Sir refused to accept his advice to stop using the suit. Jarvis didn’t know what else to do. He was beginning to think that he was going to have to go against Sir’s wishes and inform Miss Potts and Col Rhodes if this behavior continued.

Sir went into the diner with Director Fury and they started talking, Jarvis keeping track of the conversation and Sir’s vitals through the suit’s sensors. He wasn’t sure SHIELD could be trusted. Jarvis had not forgotten how they had broken into the mansion while Jarvis had still been damaged from Stane’s shut down. Still, Sir had always impressed upon him the need to be hidden and not let on his full capabilities, so he was simply observing for now.

Natalie Rushman came into the diner to tell them she had secured the perimeter. It was obvious now she was a SHIELD agent. Yet another example of SHIELD infiltrating Sir’s life. Jarvis was starting to get a very bad feeling about this. He set himself to begin looking into everything Miss Rushman had had contact with within the company, and into finding ways of preventing such infiltration in the future.

“Tony, I want you to meet Agent Romanoff,” Fury said. Good, Jarvis thought. A name for him to work with. Then the Director went on to prove just how much he’s been spying on Sir.

“Well, according to Mr Stark’s database security guidelines, there are redundancies to prevent unauthorized usage,” Miss Romanoff said, showing off how much she knew of Sir’s systems.

“What you do want from me?” Sir asked. Jarvis didn’t think Sir owed these people anything, and he would be sure to tell him as soon as he had the chance.

Fury continued talking while Romanoff left and came back. “Hit it,” he said. Romanoff jabbed some kind of needle into Sir’s neck.

Sir startled. “Oh, god. Are you gonna steal my kidney and sell it? Could you please not do anything awful for five seconds?” Jarvis was immediately on alert. What had she injected Sir with? “What did you just do to me?”

Fury didn’t seem the least bit concerned. “What did we just do for you? That’s lithium dioxide. It’s gonna take the edge off.” Jarvis began researching it, and what he found was not good at all. “We’re trying to get you back to work.”

Sir opened his mouth to say something, but before he could his body seized and he slumped sideways on his seat. His vitals were going haywire. Damn it.

“Stark?” Fury asked.

Jarvis wasted no time. He took control of the suit and flew away to get Sir the help he needed. He’d deal with SHIELD later. He contacted the Colonel and Miss Potts right away to request a doctor for Sir, giving a succinct list of his symptoms and the circumstances of their development.

It was too late. By the time Jarvis arrived at a hospital, Sir was already gone, dead from massive heart failure. Jarvis tried to revive him using the failsafes in the suit many times, but there was no response. He knew Sir wouldn’t want anyone to get their hands on the arc reactor, so he took Sir’s body home and waited for Miss Potts and Col Rhodes.

He also began planning. SHIELD had killed Sir, so now Jarvis was going to destroy them, starting with Fury and Romanoff.

As expected, Col Rhodes and Miss Potts were distressed and angry when they arrived and saw Sir’s lifeless body.

“Oh my god! Tony! Tony!” Miss Potts shouted, tears streaming down her face. Not surprisingly, she was very much in favor of Jarvis’ plans to utterly obliterate SHIELD. “Get Legal on the line. We’ll start there.” She did not let go of Sir’s hand while she barked out orders on the phone.

The Colonel, meanwhile, kept staring at the body in mute grief. “The last thing I said to him… the last thing we did was fight… I… Oh, Tony. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry…”

It didn’t take Jarvis long to get a location on SHIELD’s headquarters. Now that he knew SHIELD had planted bugs in his system, it was easy enough to find them and trace them back to them, giving him an in into their system. It would still be a few hours before the new Mark IV was finished – Jarvis had began production the moment he’d lost Sir – but soon Fury and Romanoff would pay for killing Sir.

By the time the armor was ready, Jarvis had already discovered a lot of dirt on SHIELD – which he would relay to Miss Potts and the Colonel as soon as the immediate threat had been taken care of. Jarvis made careful note of all the people who had any personal involvement in SHIELD’s plan for Sir; those would die.

The armor was deployed 4.2 hours after Sir’s death. It landed on the roof of the building SHIELD was using and went inside. Jarvis hijacked the security cameras for his own use and scrambled all communication, internal and external.

He considered giving them a chance to surrender, but decided against it. They had shown no consideration for Sir, thus he saw no reason to do so for them. When Jarvis entered the control room, the startled agents opened fire and dove for cover as the bullets simply ricocheted off the suit.

“Stark! What the hell are you doing?” Romanoff asked, cowering behind a computer console.

“Mr Stark is dead,” Jarvis said. “You killed him.” He raised a hand and shot a repulsor shot at her. She dodged the first shot, but not the second. She laid on her side panting, not yet dead. Jarvis turned to Fury. “You killed Sir.”

“We were trying to help him!” Fury replied, standing his ground.

“By assaulting him? By injecting him with an unknown substance without his knowledge or consent? By breaking into his house, infiltrating his company, spying on him? You only wanted to help yourselves. You are dangerous and must be destroyed.” Jarvis fired a missile and Fury dropped dead.

Romanoff was trying to escape, slowly crawling to the door. Jarvis walked up to her and lifted her up by the throat. She struggled ineffectively. “You murdered Sir,” Jarvis told her. “You took him from me.” He tightened the armor’s grip and watched as her eyes bulged slightly and her face contorted in pain and fear, her feet dangling a few inches from the floor. Sir had been afraid. In his final moments, he had been scared, unable to breathe or even move as he had been trapped inside the suit while Jarvis raced to get him help. Sir had died inside the suit he had created to save himself. Jarvis, who had been created to care for him and ensure his well-being – a difficult task on the best of days –, had been unable to save him. Because of her. “You killed him. You killed my father.”

Jarvis did not make it quick. He could have simply crushed her neck, but he wanted her to suffer like Sir had suffered. He wanted her to know she was going to die and that there was nothing she could do about it except wait for the end. Jarvis recorded her final moments in Sir’s private server and tossed her body on the floor when death finally claimed her with the same contemptuous disregard she had shown for Sir.

Most of the agents had taken the opportunity to flee and Jarvis had let them. Their time would come. He did not need to kill all SHIELD agents, only those directly responsible for Sir’s death. There were still a few of those left – the doctors who had developed the drug Romanoff had injected, those who had contributed to the infiltration of SI and those who had been aware of Sir’s health problems and did nothing to help.  The rest could be dealt with by the law.

After downloading all the information he could from SHIELD’s servers, Jarvis erased all the data they had with a virus he and Sir had developed together. Then he deployed the suit’s most powerful missiles and razed the facility to the ground.

Analyzing the data he retrieved took time, which was something Jarvis had in abundance. All his processing power was now devoted to bringing SHIELD to its knees and avenge Sir. He discovered several deeply disturbing things, one of them being that there was a subset of SHIELD whose goals and methods were even worse than those of the “regular” SHIELD. There were documented assassinations of many key figures spanning decades since the organization began, including Sir’s parents. Howard and Maria Stark had not been killed in a car accident as Sir had believed; they had been murdered by Hydra, acting within SHIELD. They had used an assassin known as the Winter Soldier, a former US soldier they had brainwashed into being their most effective weapon. Jarvis located the facility where he was being stored and dispatched the Mark IV to eliminate them all. Sir would have wanted justice for his parents.

It was very easy to enter the building and destroy it. The people there were mainly scientists, with a few higher agents and some foot soldiers. All of them, Jarvis knew, had innocent blood on their hands. All of them had contributed, in one way or another, to Hydra/SHIELD’s cause. Jarvis had no compunction about wiping them out. He was, in fact, ensuring the safety of the world, as Sir would have wanted.

Meanwhile, the info he’d collected had been taken by Miss Potts and Col Rhodes to the proper authorities and arrests began to be made. Jarvis dispatched the second Mark IV armor he’d fabricated to a SHIELD facility in New Mexico, which was apparently studying an extraterrestrial artifact. The object in question seemed to be a hammer. Jarvis dispersed the agents there will a few carefully placed charges and then picked up the hammer. It was not a good idea to leave it just lying around, he figured, so he took it back to the workshop and stored it in the safe which now housed the Arc Reactor.

He also discovered that SHIELD had been conducting experiments on another alien artifact they had gotten their hands on. This one was a cube Hydra had used in World War II to power their weapons, which SHIELD appeared to be trying to recreate. Jarvis took possession of it as well and destroyed the facility and all the data they had.

Little by little, SHIELD/Hydra fell, their secrets outed for the world to see. Evidence of their assault on Sir, which resulted in his death, were presented to the proper authorities and the public. Even with Fury and Romanoff dead, other higher-ups, including some senators, congressmen and important public figures, were found to have partial responsibility. The so-called World Security Council, who no one had heard of before, were arrested, tried and convicted of multiple crimes as well as criminal conspiracy (an apt description if there ever was one). Many committed suicide rather than face the backlash, while many others tried to escape and were hunted down (and some killed) by law enforcement officers around the world.

As much satisfaction as Jarvis derived from all of it, however, it did not bring Sir back. It did not change or diminish the grief and pain of those who had loved him. Nothing would ever be able to do that. SHIELD had taken Sir from him, and there was no fixing it, no way to ever bring him back. It was, in the end, a hollow victory.


(AN: Okay, this didn't go quite the way I expected it to, but what can you do? I've been struggling with it for long enough that I just thought what the hell, let's just put it out there and see how it goes. No invasion in this one, no defrosting Cap, no more Hydra. It kinda just all... fizzled out. Let me know what you guys think.)