Here’s hoping – 

[Watching Maria start in on a nearly-boiling cup of coffee is akin to living that joke about eating nails for breakfast; the woman’s made out of whatever teflon and vibranium dream about growing up to be and it’s evident even in the little things.

The question about sleep veered unusually close to personal for what she knows about Maria, and if it were anybody else Sharon would take it for the cry for connection that it might be but they don’t really do that and honestly, Maria would most likely consider it a weakness if Sharon did.  So, they drink their coffees in silence for a minute, Sharon holding the door for Maria with a look back she can’t help, eyes on everything even when there’s no threat to be assessed.]

Yeah, I tried to chat Stark up about it while he was a few in at the party but got pretty much nowhere.  He’s cagey as hell, which isn’t a good sign, either.

[Okay, so the latte isn’t bad, but this coconut sugar crap is not happening again.]

I’d say Osborn’s the best bet if we want in, kid like that is bound to have some weird, Freudian desire to people-please.  Maybe we hit him from both sides, make him feel like he’s got a choice about who he talks to.

[ This is as close as she gets to a welfare check. Rather than outright asking, she’ll veer in close and observe, let the person do the telling by way of body language, gestures, expressions. The last seventy-two hours had been rough in terms of mental as well as emotional strain, and despite everyone thinking otherwise, Hill does care about the state and stability of her agents. Especially Sharon, because she’s her first line of support. 

Everything she needed to know is already being told, and she’s relieved. Sharon Carter is as strong as anyone she knows. She’s fine. She’s weathered far more than this. ]

Osborn is equally so. I find Stark’s sudden lack of aggressive showmanship regarding this wild new endeavor concerning, to say the least. Trouble in paradise?

[ She doesn’t reveal what Jemma told her in confidence, as apparently the issue was resolved, as evidence of the party they’d thrown in the name of charity and goodwill. In Maria’s mind, they were still toeing the line that she was just begging for them to cross. ]

I agree. Osborn and I are on good terms, it’ll be easy to set up a meeting and pick his brain a little. In a friendly way, of course. 


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