sparsenicjade
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Notes: Written for 14v 2013 Day 11--Women and Media. Unbeta'ed. Thanks to harborshore for the idea that sparked this.

***


Natasha only uses the front entrance to the Avengers Tower when she wants to get caught by the media. It's weirdly a bit similar to missions: lay the trap and lie in wait. The paparazzi, unlike drug lords and sex traffickers, never disappoints her. She likes to return the favor.

*


Talking to the media is much like every interrogation Natasha has ever conducted, with the added advantage of being easier. There is not less at stake, nor are reporters and photographers any more na´ve than her other marks, but she needs only their cooperation, not their secrets, and the distance between the two is vast.

They ask, "How does it feel, being one of the only two Avengers not to have powers?"

She asks, "How do you define powers?"

She sees it click for some of the journalists, the ones who have had a beat that was something more than entertainment, something that might change lives. They know all too well that power is mutable, shifting.

And Natasha's relationship to the truth has always been her foremost power, her ability to wield it as sword and shield, as battle axe and bandage.

Of course, there are the ones who continue, who say, "Well, obviously Captain America has super strength, and Iron Man—"

"Is a product of Tony Stark's mind. Is that not a power he holds without the suit?"

Not one of them has found an adequate answer to the question. Then again, not one of them has thought to follow up with the correct question, the, "Very well, what is your power, then?"

Natasha's glad. She'd hate to have to lie.

*


Sometimes (often) they ask, "What's it like, being the only woman on a team of superheroes?"

She has a lot of answers. Her favorite is, "Like being a superhero."


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Skin by egelantier, photo by microbophile