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Literature
Mateo's Playtime
“Oh, hello Jane” Petra sighed wearily. “I'm sorry, Rafael's not here now” she pursed her lips for a moment, “He went to pick up the twins from karate”
“How come I can't take karate anymore, Mommy?” Mateo looked up at Jane
“We'll discuss that later” she closed the topic, and then looked at Petra, “We'll just-- um-- wait here for awhile. That's ok, right?” she headed through the front door.
Petra fumed, but said nothing. Finally, she smiled, “Yes, sure, it'll give us time to talk” she turned to Mateo, “Why don't you go into Ellie and Anna's room and play”
“Oh boy!” Mateo rushed off down the hallway
“Don't break anything! Those toys don't belong to you” Jane called after him.
Mateo looked around the room excitedly, but then soon grew disappointed. “Everything here is pink!” he frowned. He looked at a music box, opened it, but shut it when the tinny song began
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Literature
Parentage 1
“I'm nearly there” Olivia Benson spoke into her phone. She hung up and pulled the car into an available parking spot. She exhaled a puff of breath and willed herself to calm down.
As she strode  down the hallway, she mentally replayed all the times she'd worried about this sort of thing. As a toddler, Noah had pushed down other children or snatched toys, and Olivia had worried about his true parentage, namely the genes from Johnny Drake, pimp and sex trafficker whose penchant for violence had resulted in his death.
But today, oh today, was something different entirely. It wasn't a shove in the sandbox or grabbing a toy from another preschooler. This was something that had plagued her since the day the infant had entered her life.
“I'm glad we could meet again” the woman smiled at Olivia. “I'm sorry it had to be under such circumstances”
Olivia nodded in response to Noah's teacher. It was all she could do right now, given what had transpired toda
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Literature
Back to the Carter
“Now!” Phil Coulson shouted. The team held hands and rushed through the isochronus cyclotron with resonant superconducting coils- the portal- into a blinding white light.
“Good thing Flint could reconstitute the monolith makeup” Leopold Fitz nodded as they touched down, quite literally, on a New York city street, or rather, in an alleyway. The team made sure nobody had noticed their arrival. Dressed in dark colors, in modern, even futuristic attire, they would stand out.
Alphonso, Mack, McKenzie glanced at Elena, Yo Yo, Rodriguez, “Yeah” he sniffed. She knew what he was feeling. He'd lost another child, in a manner of speaking.
“We had to do it” Coulson stared hard at Mack and Yo Yo, knowing how they felt. “He'll be alright”
“He won't live” Mack shook his head, “He might not even be born”
“He might” Yo Yo placed her hand on his shoulder, “and he'll be safe, if he is” she smiled a
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Literature
Agent Carter: Time Bandit (vignette)
Peggy Carter: The Time Bandit
“Where is she, Coulson?” Nick Fury, proving his name was warranted, bang his fist on the table to emphasize his point.
“I really don't know, sir” Phil Coulson looked blankly at him.
“Sir” another agent entered the office
“What is it, Mackenzie?” he stared at the tall, muscular agent.
“Sir, um, we have a lead on her”
“About damn time” Fury scowled.
A beat went by. “Well?” he wanted the information.
“It seems that she's gone downtown” Mack hesitantly replied
“Downtown” Coulson sang a song's chorus for a moment and smiled briefly. Fury stared at him and Coulson stopped
“What the hell would she need there?” Fury barked, “This could complicate matters”
Peggy Carter, once again dressed in her military uniform made her way to the War Room, a store that held all sorts of military diaspora, including video games, clothes, and toys. She
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Literature
Lost and Found 10
“There are three campgrounds located around the area” Sonny pulled up images on the screen
“Sussex and Pilesgrove” Amanda explained
By now Olivia was in the squadroom, barking orders,
“Rollins, Carisi, head to Pilesgrove. Fin, you and I will go to the one in Sussex”
Pilesgrove campground
“They're not here” Amanda reported into her cell phone
“Could they have left earlier?” Sonny looked around the grounds
“No” Amanda hung up the phone, “We'd have found tire tracks, debris, something here to show us that they'd been here”
Sussex campground
“We're nearly there” Fin informed as he drove toward the grounds
“Good” Olivia stared ahead through the windshield
“You know” Elliot spoke from the backseat, “You didn't have to bring me along for the ride, but thanks”
“It's no courtesy call,” Fin explained, “Olivia wouldn't let me head out there without
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Literature
Lost and Found 9
The coffee shop was a few blocks from the park, and Olivia and Elliot chose to walk there.
“I'm not sure what to say” Elliot filled in the silence as they made their way down the sidewalk
“That's a first” Olivia quipped. It seemed like they were getting back into their old stride again
“Remind me to thank your little guy for getting us back--” he stopped abruptly. He'd almost said “back together”, as if they'd been a couple once upon a time.
Olivia realized what he'd intended to say, “A lot of things changed over time, El. I had to make a lot of hard decisions”
“At least you did” he sighed, “Kathy took care of that decision for me”
Olivia stared at him as they walked, did that mean he wouldn't have left his wife, even though they had a seemingly unhappy marriage?
Elliot sensed what her look meant, “It wasn't like that” he looked at her, in her eyes. They stopped walking and stood on the side
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Literature
Lost and Found 8
“Ok, go ahead” Olivia looked at Casey Novak.
“It's about Elliot” was all she had to say.
Olivia stared at her, unable to speak.
Casey filled in the silence, “Olivia, don't you even care why he hadn't contacted you for so long?”
“Of course” the answer came pat, automatically, but she'd never dared to go there, not now, not when things, well, things had been going well, until recently.
“He's been away for more than half a decade” Casey went on, “That didn't make you the slightest bit suspicious, or at least curious?”
“Casey, just stop” Olivia frowned, “What do you want me to say? I didn't think about it. Noah got lost and he kept going on about some man he'd seen, and then, the next thing I knew, Elliot was standing at my door” she wanted to say that it sounded like something off a poorly written television soap opera, but Casey didn't let her finish that thought,
“I know we've had our d
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Literature
Lost and found 7
The door slammed shut.
Olivia sat on the couch, motionless. She glanced over to the hallway, not moving her head, her eyes tracking the shaft of darkness. No sound, nothing perceptible, came from the other bedroom. Noah was still asleep, miraculously, through all the shouting.
Olivia sighed, and willed herself not to cry. Had she found Elliot, only to just as suddenly lose him all over again?
Elliot made his way down the apartment complex's hallway. His boots trudged over the knobby industrial carpeting. How could he have let himself lose his temper like that? He'd just managed to let her back into his life, and now-- this? He needed time away, anywhere, just to get this off his mind.
He stopped just before the elevator when he felt something vibrate in his pocket. Elliot pulled out his cell phone and looked at the text alert and who it was from,
Red.
He didn't want to deal with this, not now.
“How'd it go?” he scanned the message.
Elliot hovered his finger over the keypad
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Literature
Lost and Found 6
Olivia got up from the couch upon hearing Elliot's voice.
“Wait here” she instructed Eli.
The ten year old whipped out his cell phone, having gotten it from his father before they'd entered the apartment, and began video calling his friend
“Alex” he began
“Where are you?” the other boy, also ten, with a crop of curly black hair, interrupted, “and how come you're not here yet? I got the – you know what-- on already”
“I can't make it now” Eli sighed, “I got some stuff to do with my dad” he explained
“Oh” Alex sighed as well. “Um-- maybe you can come by later on?”
“I don't know”
In Noah's room, Elliot tried to smooth things over, “You know, when I was little, I liked blocks. Used to make buildings out of them-- well, my Mom said that I did, anyway”
“Uh huh” Noah didn't seem to be paying attention. He looked up as Olivia walked in, “Mommy, if Grand
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Literature
Lost and Found 5
Friday night
At the Stablers, Elliot leaned against the open doorway to Eli's room. The apartment was small, and there was only one spare bedroom. With the twins at college, and the girls busy with their own lives, Elliot didn't need several rooms now. What had started as a bachelor apartment after the divorce felt more like home after Kathy had sold the Stabler home and moved away from what had been her life.
“So” he began, “What are you guys going to do tonight? Make some prank calls? Watch a horror movie?”
“I don't know” Eli shoved an electronic tablet and some power cords into his backpack with one hand and scrolled on his phone with his other hand, “Alex thought about maybe a live feed of the new Star Trek movie”
“Yeah, William Shatner was a good actor” Elliot smiled
“Who?” young Eli stared blankly at his father
“Never mind”
“What are you doing tonight?” Eli scrolled on his phone but sp
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Literature
Lost and Found 4
Sheila had left, and Olivia tucked Noah back into his bed. “You've got Eddie there next to you. Goodnight, my sweet boy” she turned off the light.
“Mommy” Noah piped up from the bed. Olivia stood rooted at the bedroom door, waiting for him to continue, “Is Grandma angry with Elliot?”
“No, of course not” Olivia tried to smooth over the situation.
“But she was yelling at him. Is he a bad man?”
“No” Olivia sounded more forceful than she'd intended. She went on, softer now, “Noah, he's safe, and Grandma is safe, and they're both good people. Sometimes, people disagree, even when they're both right about some things”
“How can both of them be right?” he looked perplexed, “Somebody has to be wrong”
“That's how grown ups are” she smiled, “It's not always about being right or wrong. You sleep. I promise we'll all try to work things out.”
“Ok Mommy” Noah
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Literature
Lost and Found 3
Olivia repeated herself when Elliot just sighed, “I'm right here. I'm not going anywhere. If that helps”
“It's not simple like that, Liv” Elliot emphasized
“I'm sure that it's not” she nodded, “but it's not something we have to take care of right now.” God, could she hear herself? This wasn't like her at all. Was she simply so deliriously happy that Elliot was back that she was putting aside all rational thought for the night? How long before they'd roll into bed-- she couldn't even let herself complete that thought.
Meanwhile, Elliot kept talking,
“This is important for me, and I never wanted to just barge in here and go about half-cocked like this, rambling-- like I am, now.”
Olivia sat there, not sure how to respond. Elliot had returned, and while the eight years away seemed to slough off for them in some regards. In others, they were essentially meeting anew, like strangers would.
Elliot continued, “I knew you'd be a
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Literature
Lost and Found 2
Olivia stared at him. Elliot Stabler, as large as life, stood outside her apartment.
She didn't know whether to slap him or kiss him. Eight years away, and he shows up now?
His blue eyes sparkled, and his face, though partially covered up with a light beard, shone like the sun.
Noah looked up from his toys. He smiled and jumped off the couch, “Wow, my jacket. You found it” he scampered over to Olivia. He reached out for it from Elliot's grasp.
Olivia looked at Noah, “What do we say?”
“Thanks” he grabbed the jacket from Elliot. He looked up, “Hey, I know you.”
Elliot stared at him, “Hi there” he waggled his fingers.
“Please, come in” Olivia motioned with her hand. She felt like she was on autopilot, as if she was ensconced in a dream, as if there was a haze all around her.
Elliot stepped into the apartment. Olivia could scarcely believe what was happening. Her mind flashed back to their first year as partners. Ellio
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Literature
Lost and Found
December 2017
Manhattan Mall
Olivia Benson smiled. The season was upon them. The Christmas season, that is. She held four year old Noah's hand and they walked through the packed shopping center. Noah held hands, his other hand, with his grandmother, Sheila Porter. He looked up from one woman to the other, and nodded in contentment.
“Do you want to get your picture taken with Santa?” Olivia asked her son
“Uh huh” he grinned
“Sheila” Olivia glanced at the other woman, “See if you can get in line while I go pick up something for a certain somebody” she winked.
“Of course” Sheila smiled. She took Noah and they joined the ever-growing line to meet the man in the big red suit.
A throng of shoppers pushed past them.
“Grandma, I see-” Noah began
“Hang on, darling” Sheila frowned at her cell phone. A text alert had sounded.
She let go of his hand for a moment. That was all it took.
Noah wasn't next to her in lin
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Literature
Sensor
Thanks go to Mr. H, C, Jimmy and Mike, for all your help with Sensor
Mitzi Novak, ADA with the city’s DA’s office, looked at her watch. “He’s late again” she shook her head. Her boyfriend, Peter Keller was a police officer and by now, Mitzi knew she shouldn’t bother being on time for a date, but nonetheless here she was, alone outside a coffee shop as usual.
She smiled and remembered how life had changed for her. As a child, she’d been socially maligned, finding friends in her books and dolls instead of the children at school who taunted and teased her. Even as a child, she was small, and her glasses hadn’t helped make matters easier. Still, she’d found solace in reading and that skill had helped her when she entered law school after college. While working cases, she’d run into Peter, affectionately known as Pete, and eventually they’d found themselves making plans to chat over coffee. Their talk had moved from talking a
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Literature
Goldbergs - Jem
Adult Adam: Growing up in the '80s, there was so much to watch on TV: Transfomers, G.I.Joe, Inhumanoids, and I loved them all. I had the toys, the games, and even the biggest playset of them all, The USS Flagg.
*Eleven year old Adam shows Dana his Flagg playset*
Adult Adam: But none of them compared to what happened when I stumbled onto the most action packed 22 minutes of television.
*Jem intro plays*
Adult Adam: Jem.
High school freshman Adam rifled through his sister Erica's now uninhabited bedroom, “Come on, come on” he muttered, pushing aside New Kids memorabilia from a shelf.
“Invading Erica's privacy, ooh, let me help” Dave Kim popped his head through the open doorway.
“Go away, Dave Kim, I'm looking for some blank tapes. I know Erica kept blank tapes around to record herself” he placed a box of fashion dolls onto the floor to make space on another shelf.
“Like Revenge of the Nerds, but to herself?” Dave Kim grinned
“No, ew,
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Activity


“Oh, hello Jane” Petra sighed wearily. “I'm sorry, Rafael's not here now” she pursed her lips for a moment, “He went to pick up the twins from karate”
“How come I can't take karate anymore, Mommy?” Mateo looked up at Jane
“We'll discuss that later” she closed the topic, and then looked at Petra, “We'll just-- um-- wait here for awhile. That's ok, right?” she headed through the front door.
Petra fumed, but said nothing. Finally, she smiled, “Yes, sure, it'll give us time to talk” she turned to Mateo, “Why don't you go into Ellie and Anna's room and play”
“Oh boy!” Mateo rushed off down the hallway
“Don't break anything! Those toys don't belong to you” Jane called after him.
Mateo looked around the room excitedly, but then soon grew disappointed. “Everything here is pink!” he frowned. He looked at a music box, opened it, but shut it when the tinny song began playing. He inspected the girls' karate trophies and sighed, “I wish I still took karate, but Mommy said no. Daddy was ok with it”
He grinned when he spied a dollhouse in the corner. The back was open and he could see the rooms set up with small plastic furniture. A family of plain action figures stood on the second floor of the house.

Jane heard a lot of noise coming from down the hallway and decided to see what the commotion was about. “Just a moment” she interrupted Petra's story about Krishna from the hotel.
“What's going on, Mr. Sweetface?” Jane quietly made her way toward the twins' room.
“No, I don't want to go to bed!” Mateo held up one of the dolls
“You have to” he went on, holding up the mother doll, “Good little boys go to bed”
“But I need my story first” he waved the smaller, child doll, in his hand.
Jane smiled. This certainly was different than the games he played at home. Usually, those games involved a lot of running, and screaming, and sometimes resulted in a broken toy or two.
Just then, Anna and Elsa, Mateo's half siblings ran into the room
“Hey!” Anna shouted, “That's our dollhouse”
“And it's for girls. Why do you want to play with it?” Elsa chimed in
Mateo's smiled dropped, as did the plastic figures from his hand. They clattered on the hardwood floor.
“I'm sorry” his voice was uncharacteristically quiet.
“Hey” Rafael walked in and smiled at the children. He knelt next to Mateo, “You know, there's a lot of ways to play, and it's ok if you want to play with their dollhouse” he looked at his daughters, “I guess you're upset because Mateo didn't ask first”
“Well” Elsa began, “He didn't ask us, and that's not fair”
“But Daddy” Anna sighed, “how come he wants to play with that if he's a boy”
“Ok” Rafael began, “Is it ok if you two take karate and you're girls”
“Sure” Anna smiled, “girls can do anything boys can do”
“I see” Rafael nodded, seemingly understanding the logic, “And so that means that if girls can do anything boys can do, I guess boys can do anything that girls can do”
“That's not fair!” Elsa frowned
“Well, two plus one is three, right?” Rafael went on
“Everybody knows that!” Anna laughed
“So that means one plus two is three, also” Rafael finished
The girls just stared at their father, stunned with the logic.
“Mateo, when I was little, I never had a chance to make up stories with dolls or play with things like this. I don't want you to feel like you can't do something that you want to, just because you're a boy” Rafael hugged his son, “and I don't you two to feel like there's something you can't do just because you're girls” he hugged his daughters, “Your Mommy runs the hotel” he nodded at the girls, “and your Mommy writes really thick books” he nodded at Mateo, “and sometimes I watch all of you, like how a babysitter does”
“But you're not a girl, Daddy” Elsa pointed out
“No, I'm not” Rafael smiled, “but you like it when I tuck you in and read stories”
“I like that, too!” Mateo cheered
“Ok, so how about you kids play together nicely, and then” he looked at Jane, standing in the doorway, “I can take you out for ice cream?”
“Yay!” all the kids jumped up and down with joy.
“A small ice cream” Jane stared at him
“It'll ruin their dinner” Petra came up behind Jane
“For once, I agree with you” Jane looked both pleased, surprised, and a little scared at the realization.
“Look, just play quietly and don't hurt each other” Rafael instructed the three children.
“We will” they replied in unison.

“You got a full month of stars on your chart” Jane smiled at her son. It had been several weeks since Mateo had played at Petra's. “I think this warrants a small trip to the toy store”
“Alright!” Mateo cheered.
Jane didn't normally bribe her son, but he had been doing exceptionally well, even without an aide, and she had to give him some sort of incentive. Sweets would only exacerbate his hyperactivity, and she didn't want to dangle something lavish, like a trip, in front of him. A quick trip to the toy store couldn't hurt that much.
“You shouldn't bribe him” Alba chimed in, in Spanish, from behind her, “It'll only spoil him. He should be good for the sake of being a good boy”
“Oh please” Xiomara looked at her own mother incredulously, “If it wasn't for lemon drops and butterscotch candies, I wouldn't have done anything for you when I was his age”
“That was different” Alba remained nonplussed.
“Nonesense” Xo faced her daughter, “A little bribe never hurt anyone”
“Oh, like how you used to dangle chocolates and new outfit for Barbie to get me to be good for – however how long” she sounded exasperated
“Hey” Xo countered, “just now you were ready to take him to the toy store”
“Mommy, can we go now?” Mateo was ready at the door, his shoes strapped on, looking uncharacteristically neat and tidy.
“Oh alright” Jane sighed, both at her mother and grandmother, and at her son, “Come on, Mr. Sweetface. But something small”
“Alright!” he clapped.

“Something small?” Alba spoke in Spanish and looked through Mateo's bedroom door as the little boy played happily.
“I couldn't really say no” Jane reasoned with her grandmother
“It looks very costly”
“Luckily, it was the display model” Jane explained, “so it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be-- but I couldn't really tell him no, not after what happened with the twins last month”
“And what happened?” Alba wanted to know
“I took him over to see Rafael, and he was playing with the girls' dollhouse, and well- oh, it was so nice seeing him make up stories and not run around the house yelling at the top of his lungs.
“Well” Alba conceded, “It is nice having the house quiet now”
“Yeah” Jane looked on while Mateo played.
The dollhouse stood behind his bed, the rocking chair pushed over to the side of the room. Mateo sat on  the floor and moved the plastic figures around. A dark haired man, a woman with similar coloring, and a boy who matched them.
“Go to sleep Mateo” he held up the mother doll
“But I'm not sleepy yet” he whined, holding the boy figure
“It's time to sleep” he held the mother figure closer
“Oh, alright” he laid the boy doll down on something. Jane looked closer and nearly gasped aloud. Mateo was using a sanitary napkin. Thankfully it was new.
“Where did he find that?” she wondered quietly. Alba had left the hallway or Jane was sure she'd get a quick lecture.
Mateo moved the action figures around some more. The boy doll was still “sleeping” on the sanitary napkin, but Mateo had shifted the mother and father dolls down to the living room. He bend the figures' legs and placed the toys on a hard plastic couch.
“There, you watch grown up TV while I sleep” he laughed
Jane smiled at the playtime scenario
“Oh, almost forgot” he got up and rummaged through his toy box, and finally came up with an Aquaman figure. That had been an impromptu gift from Adam. The figure was old, with blonde painted hair and the body molded in orange and green plastic. Mateo placed Aquaman on the dollhouse's second floor, next to the “sleeping” boy doll.
“There, you keep him safe from bad guys, Michael” Mateo nodded at the action figure.
Jane didn't know what to think. She sniffed back some emotion.
Mateo turned when he heard her sniffle, “Oh, hi Mommy. Do you want to play with me?”
Jane smiled sadly, “Sure, of course, Mr. Sweetface”
“See, you and Daddy are watching TV”
“Uh huh, I see”
“And I'm sleeping because I'm a good boy” he grinned
“Yes, yes you are” she nodded and sniffed back another wave of emotion.
“If I'm good and get stars on my chart, can we go to the toy store again?”
“Maybe” Jane replied after a moment, “I think we can think of something else if you get a month of stars”
“Like what?”
“Well, you and I and Daddy could have a picnic”
Mateo thought for a moment, “Ok, I guess so” he smiled
“Come here, Mr. Sweetface” she hugged him. “Do you know how glad I am that you're around”
“I'm not round, Mommy!” he laughed
“Around” she smiled, “It's another way to say, I'm glad you're here, with me”
“Me too” he smiled
“Yeah, me too” she hugged him closer.
“I'm nearly there” Olivia Benson spoke into her phone. She hung up and pulled the car into an available parking spot. She exhaled a puff of breath and willed herself to calm down.
As she strode  down the hallway, she mentally replayed all the times she'd worried about this sort of thing. As a toddler, Noah had pushed down other children or snatched toys, and Olivia had worried about his true parentage, namely the genes from Johnny Drake, pimp and sex trafficker whose penchant for violence had resulted in his death.
But today, oh today, was something different entirely. It wasn't a shove in the sandbox or grabbing a toy from another preschooler. This was something that had plagued her since the day the infant had entered her life.
“I'm glad we could meet again” the woman smiled at Olivia. “I'm sorry it had to be under such circumstances”
Olivia nodded in response to Noah's teacher. It was all she could do right now, given what had transpired today.
“I know that Noah's a special boy” the teacher went on, “He talks about you a lot”
Olivia smiled
“On the kindergarten level, we try to emphasize the three C's: Caring, courtesy and courage”
“Of course” Olivia agreed, “But I don't see what that has to do with today. It must've been a mistake, he's not usually like this”
“No, he's not” the teacher smiled sadly, “Has anything been going on at home?”
“I don't know what you're getting at” Olivia put up her defenses.
“Ms. Benson, Noah punched another student. We're lucky that he didn't give the other boy a black eye”
“He's nearly five” Olivia defended her son
“Yes” the teacher agreed, “and that's why we want to tackle this right now”
“I noticed you didn't ask the other child's parents in for a meeting”
“That's because your son seems to be the aggressor here”
There was a beat of a moment, then two. Finally, the teacher spoke again, “I know you care about Noah a great deal. You're right, he's usually a very sweet boy and wouldn't hurt a fly. I wanted to talk with you because I was concerned that perhaps something was troubling, something that he might've spoken with you about, but felt that he couldn't talk about it at school”
"Maybe he'll speak to me," Olivia sighed, "I'd like to pick him now"
"Of course" the teacher led her down the hallway where Noah sat outside the principal's office. He looked so small, clutching his blue backpack.
"Mommy!" he jumped up and ran to her.
"Hey, my sweet boy" Olivia smiled, "Let's get you home"
"Am I in trouble?" he looked up at her.
Olivia glanced at the teacher, "I don't think so"
"This is a first offense" the teacher admitted, "and the school does take a strong anti bullying stance"
"His first offense" Olivia turned towards the teacher. Noah clung to her hand, "He's barely five" she frowned
"And that's why the school is taking this so seriously" the teacher finished
"I see" Olivia huffed and turned toward the door. She grasped Noah's hand and they walked down the hallway. No further words were needed.
As she buckled Noah into his booster seat, Olivia looked at him with caring eyes, "What's going on, Noah? You don't usually go around hitting kids"
"Nothing" he sighed and looked down at his sneakers.
"Ok" she nodded, leaving him some space.
The car ride home was uneventful. Olivia put the radio on and mother and son listened to various songs on the soft rock station that played.
The next number came on, "Hey little girl, is your daddy home? Did he go away and leave you all alone? Oh yeah" the singer crooned.
“How come I don't have a Daddy?” Noah piped up from the backseat.
Olivia nearly ran into the curb, so surprised she was to hear him ask that.
"Is that what happened today at school?" she ventured, "Did the other little boy ask you that?"
"Anthony Wilhelm said it to me during quiet time" Noah explained, "So I punched him to take it back"
"Noah" Olivia felt both sorry for her son and irritated that he used his fists instead of his words, and told him so, "You've got to speak up, to say something when somebody's hurting you"
“He said I wasn't a real kid, that I was adopted” Noah finally blurted out, “What does that mean, Mommy?”
“Now!” Phil Coulson shouted. The team held hands and rushed through the isochronus cyclotron with resonant superconducting coils- the portal- into a blinding white light.
“Good thing Flint could reconstitute the monolith makeup” Leopold Fitz nodded as they touched down, quite literally, on a New York city street, or rather, in an alleyway. The team made sure nobody had noticed their arrival. Dressed in dark colors, in modern, even futuristic attire, they would stand out.
Alphonso, Mack, McKenzie glanced at Elena, Yo Yo, Rodriguez, “Yeah” he sniffed. She knew what he was feeling. He'd lost another child, in a manner of speaking.
“We had to do it” Coulson stared hard at Mack and Yo Yo, knowing how they felt. “He'll be alright”
“He won't live” Mack shook his head, “He might not even be born”
“He might” Yo Yo placed her hand on his shoulder, “and he'll be safe, if he is” she smiled at him.
“Sure”
The team stepped out of the alleyway, ready to get back to SHIELD headquarters.
“I don't to break up your revelation guys” Melinda May spoke up, “but I don't think we're home just yet”
The team looked around at their surroundings. The Chrysler building loomed ahead of them, but it looked new, too new. Passers by glanced at the group, who were dressed in strange clothes. The citizens, passers by were also dressed oddly. Men wore suits and ties, fedoras perched on heads. Women wore knee length dresses, some paired with pearls around their necks.
Jemma Simmons' eyes darted from one side to the other, “I don't believe we're in Kansas anymore”
A suited man bumped into Mack, “Oh sorry” he apologized, “Well, aren't you a tall colored boy” he quipped.
Mack stared at him as he made his way down the street. This was starting to seem more like a nightmare. Yo Yo held him back from trying to follow the man.
“Where are we?” he hesitantly asked the group.
“This can't be the Framework again” Yo Yo looked wary
“No” Coulson shook his head, “it seems that-” he began
May finished for him, “We're in the past, too far in the past” she noted, “We're in the 1950s”

At Shield, Agent Peggy Carter, now Director Carter, poured over paperwork with Howard Stark. She walked around the wooden desk and looked at the files from another angle.
“No” she shook her head emphatically, “It shouldn't be done”
“Come on, Peg” Howard began
“No” she was forceful, “I won't allow you to turn him into some sort of Frankenstein's creation for your childish pursuits”
“The safety of the free world isn't a childish pursuit” Howard countered
“Just leave him be” she practically spat out at her friend, “He's been through enough, Lord knows, and I don't want you to – to”
“To give him the chance that Steve had?” Howard quipped
“I can't deal with this” she walked out of the room. Her voice came through the hallway, “Not now”
Peggy stalked out of the bunker and surveyed her surrounding. Camp LeHigh, in New Jersey, looked as it always had. Troops ran in formation around a makeshift track. They wore black t-shirts and matching BDU pants. Peggy smiled at the thought of another solider who had run this circuit. She glanced up at the flagpole in the distance that marked the halfway point for the soldiers' track course.
She closed her eyes for a moment, silently re-envisioning how Steve Rogers, barely 110 pounds soaking wet, had been the first man to bring down the fated flag in several years, in fact, ever, by using his brain instead of only his brawn.
Peggy opened her eyes and walked back into the ammunition bunker. She had a bone to pick with her friend Howard Stark.

“Hold on” Coulson stopped everyone, including Mack, “We need to think about this logically, seriously”
“We just saved the future” Daisy fumed, “We kept millions from being blown to bits by the Kree, we can't just stand around here waiting for something to happen”
“That's not what I was suggesting” Coulson smiled, “But if we're going anywhere, we'll have to get out of this swat team gear and into something more inconspicuous”
“And what do you suggest?” Yo Yo sighed in frustration, “We ransack a dry cleaners?”
May glanced over at a dress shop down the street, “I think that can be arranged” she smiled.

At Shield, Peggy was on the phone, “No darling, I won't be home for another hour. Yes, go ahead, get Michael ready for bed.. Read him a story and hopefully, I'll be there in time to give a goodnight kiss.” she smiled, “yes, one for you, too”
Howard leaned over to her, “Ask the missus when he's coming here” he laughed
Peggy frowned, “I'll call you again just before I leave. I love you” she hung up the phone and turned to her friend, “Howard, I have asked you time and time again, not to refer to my husband like that”
“Come on, Peg” Howard grinned, “Sousa takes more care of your kid than you do”
Peggy glowered at him. “Jokes are one thing, but this is quite something else” she spoke in matter of fact tones, “Daniel is a good man, and yes, he does help out with childcare, which is far more than I'd expect of you. I shouldn't have to worry though, it won't be as if you find some poor girl to marry anytime soon”
Howard's smile fell from his face, “No, you're right. I-uh-- shouldn't joke about him. He helped us out a lot, even with that bum leg of his”
“If you mean he physically closed a temporal space rift created of Zero Matter while you, Samberly, and Dr. Wilkes were bickering like children, then yes, I'd say he helped us heaps” she stared coldly at him.

At the dress shop, Coulson took the men and pilfered shirts, slacks, and accessories off the hangers and shelves. May took the women and snatched dresses, shoes, and handbags from the other side of the shop. The store was set up like any high end shop at the mall, with men's and ladies clothes in one store. The team had no idea if this was  par for the course or if they in some sort of progressive establishment. The oldest member of their team had been born in the mid 1960s, so nobody had any real recollection of the 1950s other than a series of 1980s time travel films.
The group excited the back of the shop, just as they'd entered it. May, Jemma, Yo Yo, and Daisy were dressed in Stepford Wife style flowered dresses, heels and matching  handbags. Coulson, Mack, and Fitz wore shirts and pants, but carried briefcases.
“God, these weigh a ton” Fitz sighed, swinging his briefcase
“Next time, don't shove everything we wore into them” Daisy smirked
“We couldn't risk leaving anything behind” Coulson warned, “I've seen enough movies to know anything from the future left here could have dire consequences.” he grinned grimly, “Heck, I've seen enough real life occurrences to know that leaving anything here could have the same result.”
“Now where to?” Jemma glanced around at their surroundings
“Well” Coulson spoke for the team, “we're in the 1950s, and that means even the oldest Shield member would be in diapers now, but there's one person I know who'll be alive and able to help us”
The team looked around at each other. They knew exactly who he was talking about. Jemma smiled broadly at the thought.
“Peggy Carter” Coulson finished.
Peggy Carter: The Time Bandit

“Where is she, Coulson?” Nick Fury, proving his name was warranted, bang his fist on the table to emphasize his point.
“I really don't know, sir” Phil Coulson looked blankly at him.
“Sir” another agent entered the office
“What is it, Mackenzie?” he stared at the tall, muscular agent.
“Sir, um, we have a lead on her”
“About damn time” Fury scowled.
A beat went by. “Well?” he wanted the information.
“It seems that she's gone downtown” Mack hesitantly replied
“Downtown” Coulson sang a song's chorus for a moment and smiled briefly. Fury stared at him and Coulson stopped
“What the hell would she need there?” Fury barked, “This could complicate matters”

Peggy Carter, once again dressed in her military uniform made her way to the War Room, a store that held all sorts of military diaspora, including video games, clothes, and toys. She pushed her way in, expecting the small store to be packed, but it being barely one in the afternoon, the shop was nearly empty. Only a few customers looked at racks of games and t-shirts.
The sales attendant, a slip of a girl who looked barely old enough to drive, smiled, “Oh, you're back”
“Show me that doll of yours” Peggy skipped any niceties
The salesgirl picked up a foot tall male doll dressed as a World War Two soldier, replete with haversack, helmet, and wielding a molded rifle with a tiny plastic bayonet attached. Had he been full scale, he'd have stood well over six feet tall.
“No” Peggy sadly shook her head, “the other one, the one I saw the last time I was here” she was nearly on the verge of tears, “the one-- who-- she glanced around. A poster proclaiming at war film was emblazoned on the wall.
“Him” she sniffed. The poster showed a thin soldier, dressed in what looked like over-sized fatigues, with a helmet that dwarfed him. He looked visibly strained under the rifle in his bony hands.
“Him” she looked at the salesgirl.
It was painfully obvious who Peggy was really seeing on the wall.
Steve Rogers, pre serum.
“Oh, the recruit” the salesgirl smiled blithely, “He's sold out”
“He-- someone else wanted him-- that?”
“Oh yes” she went on, “a gentleman came in with his son, said it reminded him of someone, and took it home”
Peggy blinked back some tears and forced a smile. “Right” she nodded, “of course” she thanked the sales attendant and turned on her heels. Peggy wiped her eyes as she left the store, and made her way down the busy New York City sidewalks.
“Hey, we won the war!” a teenage boy jeered at her
“How about a kiss?” a man made roving eyes at her.
Peggy pushed through some passersby and made her way to the subway, A taxi would be preposterous at this time, she'd seen that much.
“It's not my time” she headed down the concrete stairs.
She paid for her ticket and pushed past the turnstiles.
Agent Carter: Time Bandit (vignette)
I plan to flesh this into a longer story. Originally, this was a dream I'd had one night.
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“There are three campgrounds located around the area” Sonny pulled up images on the screen
“Sussex and Pilesgrove” Amanda explained
By now Olivia was in the squadroom, barking orders,
“Rollins, Carisi, head to Pilesgrove. Fin, you and I will go to the one in Sussex”

Pilesgrove campground

“They're not here” Amanda reported into her cell phone
“Could they have left earlier?” Sonny looked around the grounds
“No” Amanda hung up the phone, “We'd have found tire tracks, debris, something here to show us that they'd been here”

Sussex campground

“We're nearly there” Fin informed as he drove toward the grounds
“Good” Olivia stared ahead through the windshield
“You know” Elliot spoke from the backseat, “You didn't have to bring me along for the ride, but thanks”
“It's no courtesy call,” Fin explained, “Olivia wouldn't let me head out there without stopping for you first”
“Aww, you're all heart, Liv”
“Sure, sure” Olivia was obviously preoccupied.
The car pulled up to the campgrounds. The three got out, and began canvassing the area.
“I hear something” Olivia's voice was quiet as she strained to listen.
“Come out, come out wherever you are” Sheila's voice could be heard.
“That's Sheila” Olivia mouthed to her the others. She used her cell phone to call for backup from the local Jersey police. She informed the other two that the local cops would be on their way soon.
The three crept up to one of the small vacation cottages. Olivia's heart jumped into her throat when she saw Noah run out from behind the cottage, Sheila hot on his trail.
“Got you” Sheila scooped him up in a hug, both of them laughing.
“Mommy!” Noah shouted upon seeing her
“Sheila, let go of my son” Olivia shouted.
Sheila gripped Noah tighter to her, “Forget it, Olivia, he's the only piece of Ellie I still have left”
“You're scaring him” Olivia tried to reason with her
“You're not scared, are you?” Sheila smiled down at Noah, “You're my grandson”
Noah gave an uneasy grin.
Elliot stepped forward, “You don't have to do this, really”
“Shut up!” Sheila shouted at him, “You're part of why I lost Ellie in the first place” she spat the words out, “If you'd done your job, she'd be here, with me, and I'd have my family”
“I know” Elliot confessed, “I should've done the right thing then. I have to live with that for the rest of my life” he looked at Noah, “Hey buddy, why don't you come over here, and we'll let you Mom and Grandma talk, ok?”
Noah inched forward, but Sheila held him fast
“He's not going anywhere.” she yelled to them
“Grandma, I'm sorry” Noah cried, “I want to go to Mommy.”
“She's not your mommy” Sheila's voice turned harsh. “Ellie is”
“No!” Noah cried even harder, tears streamed down his face, “Mommy is. See, there she is” he pointed with his free hand. Sheila held his other in a tight grip.
Fin had his gun trained on Sheila. Olivia stood behind him to the side, Elliot next to her. Both looked unarmed.
Sirens blared behind them. Noah looked up and saw flashing lights as Jersey police arrived on the scene. Fin lowered his gun and spoke to the Jersey officers who exited the oncoming cars.
Olivia looked at Elliot, “I wish your King Solomon was here” she sighed
Elliot knew exactly what she meant.
“Yeah” he nodded in agreement, “Let's split the baby”
Olivia looked back at Sheila, outside the cottage, the door open, Noah only a few feet away from Olivia. She could practically touch him. She glanced back.  
By now, the local Jersey officers stood ready, guns trained on Sheila.
“You're right” Olivia shouted to her, “He's part of Ellie, and I know how you feel. Maybe you should keep him”
Sheila smiled widely, “Oh, Olivia,” she sniffed back some emotion. She let go of Noah's hand and wiped her own nose with her fingers.
“Noah” Elliot knelt down, “come here, buddy”
Like a rocket, Noah raced towards Elliot and threw his little arms around the former detective's neck.
“Now” Olivia gave the signal. Jersey police shot at Sheila, not trying to kill her, but rather aiming to only wound her. Fin had given them explicit instructions.
Elliot held Noah, shielded his face away from the gunfire. No sense seeing police shoot his grandmother.
“Mommy” he cried into Elliot's neck,
“I know, she's here, pal” Elliot hugged the little boy, “She's right here for you.”

Olivia bundled Noah in her coat and situated him in the backseat of the car. She rode in the back with him, while Elliot and Fin rode in the front. Fin drove.
“What's going to happen to Grandma Sheila?” Noah looked at Olivia.
“I-- I don't know” Olivia was honest.
“Why did she say that you weren't my mommy. You are. I know that”
“Yeah” Olivia sighed and forced a smile. What else could she say.

It was nightfall by the time Fin dropped Olivia, Elliot and Noah at Olivia's apartment building.
“Thanks” she thanked Fin
“It's ok” he nodded. He knew how she felt, and she knew how he felt. He'd been at SVU almost as long as she'd been.
Upstairs, in Olivia's apartment, she gave Noah a bath and got him into pajamas. “There” she smiled, “You're tucked in, and you've got Eddie next to you. Do you want to hear a story?”
Noah's eyes grew wide. “No no, Mommy, no story”. He recalled the cryptic story his grandmother had told him earlier that day.
“Oh, alright” Olivia thought aloud, “Think good thoughts, and try to sleep”
“Ok” he smiled sleepily.
Olivia shut the light, and closed the door to his room. She walked down the hallway and found Elliot on the couch.
“He's had a hell of a day” she summed up
“Yeah” Elliot agreed, “Look, is there anything I can help out with?”
“You've got your own kids to deal with. I can't ask you to do anything more than what you did today. You were there for me, for Noah, and that meant the world.”
“Of course” Elliot nodded in acknowledgment, “I wish I'd been there for you this whole time, through everything”
“Me too” she settled on the couch next to him. It felt good having him there, beside her. It felt natural, like he belonged there, with them.
The doorbell rang. Olivia glanced at the hallway to make sure Noah was seemingly asleep, and then opened the front door.
Trevor Langan stood there.
“I hope this isn't too late, Liv” he began
“Trevor, I've had a very long day, and if you're here for what I think you are--” she tried to stop him.
“No” he shook his head, “I'm here on business tonight” he played with the ring on his finger,
“Business?” she didn't understand
“Child Protective Services has lodged a complaint about you”
“I didn't hurt Noah. That was to stop a taxicab from hitting him”
“No, not that” he clarified, “Rather, it's because you chose not to leave him with a trusted babysitter, and instead left him with someone who put his life in danger, not to mention you had a team of officers with their guns trained on him”
“On Sheila, who kidnapped him” she explained
“I know” he sounded apologetic, “but I have to do my job” he handed her a brown envelope. It felt heavy in her hand. “I'm sorry” he said once more, and then left.
“What happened?” Elliot was now behind her, off from the couch. Trevor hadn't noticed him there, or hadn't thought to mention anything.
Olivia opened the envelope and sifted through the sheaf of papers, “CPS wants to move Noah to a foster family” she looked at him, her eyes shone with disbelief and hurt, “They think I'm endangering his life with my work”

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:iconmelodiimystique:
MelodiiMystique Featured By Owner Edited Feb 6, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
miss seeing you at jemcon hon ;*
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:iconactionman81:
actionman81 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2018
Thanks
Maybe when I get some more money- or a better paying career
I can barely afford cons in my own city, let alone others
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:icondavidcmatthews:
DavidCMatthews Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2017  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you for the faves!! :boogie:
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:iconactionman81:
actionman81 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017
Sure thing! It's easy when you draw them so beautifully.
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:iconbostongirl7519:
Bostongirl7519 Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2016
Aabb2fg by Bostongirl7519
:iconllama3dplz::icongivellama1plz::icongivellama2plz::icongivellama3plz::iconllama3dplz:

Agent Carter can get addicting.  nice job.

If you could be so kind to send
a llama back I will be so Happy.
Thanks

Hugs Are Free,
DeeDee
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:iconactionman81:
actionman81 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2016
Thanks! Let's hope that Netflix picks it up for more new seasons.
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:iconbostongirl7519:
Bostongirl7519 Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2016
Amen to that.
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:iconavasquezart:
AVasquezArt Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012  Professional Filmographer
thanks for the :+fav:
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:iconsteveroman:
SteveRoman Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2012
Thanks for the fav!
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:iconda-real-defunkt:
Da-Real-Defunkt Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2011
Thank you for the :+fav:
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