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Avengers Fic: Fanfare for the Common Man

CHARACTERS/PAIRING: JARVIS, Tony, Thor, Natasha, Steve, Clint, Bruce
SUMMARY: Not all of the Avengers took to JARVIS right away
RATING: PG
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Written for avengers_land's Technology Wants a Movie Challenge.


Fanfare for the Common Man


Not all of the Avengers took to JARVIS right away.

“WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?” Thor shouted, the first time he heard the disembodied voice speaking. He spun around so fast he nearly took Steve’s head off with Mjölnir. “Is it inside my head? Can the rest of you hear it as well?”

Tony snorted with laughter, because he wasn’t the one who’d nearly been decapitated by a panicky Norse god. “Relax, big guy, it’s just my AI, JARVIS. There are speakers all over the house.”

“What is an AI?” Thor asked, frowning up at the ceiling. “Is it magic?”

“Artificial intelligence,” Bruce explained patiently. “Sort of like a robot.”

“Like the Destroyer that Loki sent to kill me?” Thor asked, alarmed.

Tony shrugged. “Sure, I guess. Only, you know, more helpful and less murderous. Hopefully.”

“And where does its body reside?” Thor asked, presumably in case he ever had to kill it.

“It doesn’t have a body,” Tony said. “It’s part of the computer system that’s installed in the house.”

“You mean it lives inside the walls?” Thor asked. “That is extremely unsettling.”

“You get used to it,” Tony said.

Thor never really got used to it, though. Even months later, he still started a little whenever JARVIS spoke. The others tried not to laugh. Too much.

* * *

Natasha was the only Avenger who knew about JARVIS before she moved into the tower. That did not mean she liked it, however. It took her a week to identify every camera, sensor, and microphone in her apartment. And another week to dismantle, disable, or cover them all up.

JARVIS noted her progress without comment. Until she went to work on a sensor embedded in the ceiling.

“Agent Romanoff?” JARVIS interrupted politely.

“What?” she said irritably.

“The device you are tinkering with is part of the tower’s fire detection and suppression system. I do not recommend disabling it.”

She lowered her screwdriver and sighed. “Fine.”

“There is, however, a microphone in the master bath that you do not seem to have discovered.”

She smiled. “Thanks, JARVIS.”

She ended up leaving one set of sensors intact in the kitchen. JARVIS might not be so bad to have around after all.

* * *

Steve took a while to make peace with the idea of a disembodied voice that spied on him twenty-four hours a day. But once he figured out how useful JARVIS could be he started to warm up to it.

“JARVIS, what does YOLO mean?” Steve asked, once he was back in his apartment, alone.

“It is an acronym for the phrase 'You only live once,'” JARVIS explained. “Popularized by teenagers as a justification for brash decisions.”

Steve frowned. “So when Darcy said it earlier today ...”

“I believe Ms. Lewis was employing sarcasm to imply that Mr. Stark’s decision to let Thor drive the Lamborghini was ill-advised.”

Steve smiled. “Got it. Thanks, JARVIS.”

“It was my pleasure, sir.”

* * *

Clint and JARVIS seemed to be, well … frenemies, for lack of a better word.

Clint saw no reason why he shouldn’t take full advantage of having a computerized butler at his beck and call 24/7. And while JARVIS was programmed to obey with good grace, it almost seemed as if the AI took a sort of perverse satisfaction in thwarting Clint’s instructions.

“Dammit, JARVIS, these socks are all pink!” Clint scowled at the package of new athletic socks that had just arrived. “What am I supposed to with these?”

“Wear them?” the AI suggested with no trace of duplicity.

“I’m not wearing pink socks!”

“I apologize, sir. You did not specify a color, so I was forced to improvise. I thought these would be to your liking.”

* * *

Bruce was the only Avenger (besides Tony) who actually liked JARVIS. Not only did JARVIS remind him of Tony (whom he also liked), but he actually enjoyed the AI’s company. Bruce spent a lot of time alone working in his lab, and he liked that JARVIS was always available for some benign, low-stress conversation whenever he started to get too much inside his own head.

Some days they’d converse for hours about music, literature, world events, even scientific theory. It was nice.

And while it would be absurd to think that JARVIS had any favorites among the Avengers, somehow the herbal tea that Bruce preferred always seemed to be well-stocked in all the tower kitchens.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
austin360
Nov. 11th, 2012 02:17 pm (UTC)
I love this!
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