Sage walked a little further into the room when her adoptive dad and Mr. Stark disappeared into another room, and she stood silently in the center, glancing around. This was one of the tallest buildings she'd been in, and she was studying the interior quickly and efficiently in that one glance. It was stylish, slick, and modern; designed to be both attractive and productive.
"It's a nice place huh?" Bruce asked, smiling as he watched the teen; he saw the way she was looking around, face blank, and figured that she was sort of awed.
Two pairs of green eyes met and the girl nodded, knowing that a smile would be expected and giving a mild one. "It is; the modern style is quite aesthetic but obviously meant to also be efficient. A good combination; yes?" she widened the grin instinctually; maybe she had gotten too good at faking her emotion, sometimes she wished that she didn't have to, but even her father became edgy around her when she didn't.
Banner nodded in agreement, only slightly put off by her complex answer. "Yeah, it is." he agreed, seeing her glance out the window into the balcony. "Great view too if you want to go see."
Sage nodded. "I would like to go see, thank you," she started towards the doors leading outside and let the false expression drop from her face as she went outside. It was warm out and the wind was slight, something the girl thought would be quite pleasing for most people. Out of habit her face twitched into a smile at the thought; now it was getting to be difficult to feel natural, her mask throwing itself on even when she wasn't with others.
Drawn to the edge of the balcony, Sage peered over the edge at the city below and studied the view and height. Most people would be amazed at how high up she was, but she was as numb as ever. Silently, she swung her leg around the edge of the railing and pulled herself into a sitting position, allowing her legs to kick freely over the city before pulling herself into a standing position to peer further down.
There was a natural rush of adrenaline that coarsed through her veins, making her heart pick up, her breathing become stiffer, and her palms sweat slightly. She could imagine this natural fight or flight reaction as being the same as exhilaration, and it felt nice.
Bruce was just looking up from a magazine he had grabbed when he saw Sage stand up on the balcony, bowing forwards deeply and looking over the edge. Instantly he jumped up and ran outside, "Hey kid! Get down from there! You're going to kill yourself!" he was concerned and was all the way over to her by the time she got down. "What were you thinking?"
"I enjoy heights," enjoy was a good word for it, she thought, it was the closest she would ever get to the feeling. She could understand why the doctor had been concerned for her; it must have looked like she would fall, but she knew that her body was fit and her muscles well-trained enough for her to maintain perfect balance on the ledge. "I apologize for worrying you." she told him, walking inside.
As she was walking the watch on her right wrist beeped loudly and continuously until she turned it off. Time to take her medicine; she took the purple binder from the pocket of her jacket and unzipped it, first taking out a bottle of pills, which she took two of without water. They went down hard and hurt her throat, but she ignored it and began preparing a syringe.
Having followed her inside Bruce was watching as Sage prepared the syringe with a translucent, lightly blue colored liquid, which she measured carefully. Looking into the ghost-like reflection she had in the window she raised her chin up and began drawing the long needle towards her neck.
"What are you doing?" He freaked out again, pulling her arm down in alarm.
"I am administering my medicine; bad things are likely to happen if I don't take it."
"Do you need to inject yourself in the carotid artery?"
"It is easiest there, yes,"
"Here then, at least have me do it," he took the syringe from her hand. "I am a doctor you know."
Sage nodded and lifted her chin, angling it slightly so that he could get better access to the spot just under her chin that she used as her injection site; it was white and pink with old and new scars from previous daily injections, but it wasn't tender to touch. She was quick to heal and it didn't bother her.
Dr. Banner was slightly surprised at how easily she trusted him and quickly and safely injected the substance into her throat. He was put off that she hadn't objected to being stuck with a needle by a stranger, and that she was even willing to do it to herself.
"What is the medicine for?"
"My organ systems are in danger of failing due to an experimental substance that was injected into me while I was a child, before I was adopted by Mr. Stewart; the medication helps."
Bruce frowned as he gave the empty syringe back to her and she took the dirty needle off and put it in a hazardous waste bag attached to the binder. "You were experimented on?"
"I was two at the time; they were trying to create a super soldier, with some measure of success."
Bruce thought it weird that she didn't sound emotional at all and that her face was blank. "That's terrible,"
Sage shrugged. "It was immoral, yes; but the scientists were punished for the wrongdoing and I'm with my father now."
Kyle and Tony walked back out and the former motioned his daughter to follow him out. "Thank you Tony; we'll come back within the week."
"Goodbye Mr. Stark; goodbye Dr. Banner." she waved as they departed.
Bruce waved back and turned to Tony. "What's going on?"
"Kyle's dying and Sage is-"
"In danger of dying; she told me. She's a little odd,"
"Did she tell you about the experiments?" Bruce nodded, "Well they fried the part of the brain that is capable of creating and processing emotion; she can't feel anything."
Dr. Banner frowned. "That's terrible, but explains it,"
"Yeah; and she's going to be moving in and I'm going to be her primary caretaker after Kyle dies of lung cancer; Piper's probably not going to be too happy."
"I can imagine not, since you didn't ask her about it."
Tony stood there for a second before slapping Bruce's shoulder, "Well doc; let's finish that tour, shall we?"