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Age Of Ultron For Real [M]

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Offline Aries Jordan

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"Only thing that hurts about that --" Steve said, between bashing one drone and kicking another into Ultron's path "--is I think you're echoing Tony's opinion."

He twisted with superb agility so that Ultron's blast knocked apart the knot of drones that were trying to hold him in place, then straightened up, ready to fight more but not taking the offense yet.  "I don't have  much to say.  I'm only here to make sure Lunella is safe with you.  I don't know about her, but you're not convincing me that she is."

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Vision with the Mind Stone was able to completely shut Ultron out of the internet," Tony said.  "With this updated JARVIS infiltration software, I think he could do even more.  He could hack Ultron's own network and take over his drones.  We could win the war without firing a shot or even dropping one of the millions of packages Ultron is delivering.  Then, if there are more Pym Particles, we can find them and go after the other Stones, and if there aren't, with Ultron gone, we can afford to wait for Lang to come back.  Or figure out how to bring him back."

Bruce was worried about the way Tony's eyes were glinting, but he didn't have any better ideas.  "We have the vibranium," he said checking things off on his fingers.  "We have JARVIS.  We need Dr. Cho.  Or at least her work on tissue generation."

"You can work on that while Parker and I get the Stone,"

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Are we talking about that blue alien woman who was on the spaceship with Tony?  Nebula?"  Pepper began assembling tuna salad sandwiches, one for her, one for Wade.  But looking at the way Deadpool scarfed down cookie dough, she made a couple more for him.  "What exactly would you do if you were brave enough?"  Deadpool was an immortal being, possessing great skill with weaponry, but she couldn't think what use any of that would be under the circumstances.


Offline EvilCopepod

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Ultron seemed mildly irritated at Steve when he'd come here, but what he said drove him into a full rage. It didn't help that Pepper had just compared him to Tony too.

"I am not--! These are my opinions! Not his!"

He used the tractor beam in his gauntlet to yank up one of the cupboards, bringing a chunk of the ground it was bolted to and flinging it at him.

"I'll ask the next person who tries to kidnap her if they're concerned about her safety."

Lunella stopped trying to get free from the drone so she could think through what to do. Since it was her drone, all she had to do was verbally override its protective measures and have it put her down.

"You're breaking everything, you dumb robot!" Lunella shouted, flinging one of the busted drone parts at Ultron. It didn't even come close to hitting him, but it got his attention anyway.

"Little kids need to stay out of this fight." He said, a few of his drones stepping between her and them.

"You can't call me that! I'm older than you!"

--------------------------------

"And can Vision handle all that stuff?" He knew that he was on par with Ultron, but he'd never actually heard of him running systems like Ultron and JARVIS had. "We'd also need how Ultron designed the body... unless Vision gave you that. I don't think Dr. Cho was making humans that could change their body density."

He was surprised that Tony had included him in the time travel. "Oh-- uh.. ok. When do you think would be the best time and place to take it from?"

--------------------------------

"Yeah, her." Deadpool said with a dreamy sigh.

"I think if I was brave enough I'd... I'd let her go. I don't deserve her, and she'd be so much better off finding a spacehunk... or multiple depending on her bloodlust and regular lust. If she leaves, then she could be safe too. Now that she's on Ultron's shit list."


Offline Aries Jordan

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Steve wasn't as limber as Spider-Man, but he bent backwards at almost a 90-degree angle to let the chunk of masonry and closet fly over him.  It went completely through the wall of Luna's lab and into the next room.  Plaster dust billowed, concrete chips and shreds of wallboard littered the floor.

While Ultron was occupied with Lunella, he managed to disable a few more drones and get some breathing space, which he used to vault up onto a heavy laminate-topped table.  From there it would be easy to crash through Ultron's drones to reach Luna, on the off chance her next words were "Let's go back to Wakanda."

"How about we don't fight?  Just to change things up?" he proposed.  He had to work to keep a straight face.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"If Ultron can do it, Vision can," Tony said.  "And it was the Mind Stone gave him the power to alter his density." 

"I'm more worried about his brain than his body," Bruce put in.  "He was built of different personality layers on top of Ultron's base consciousness.  Can we duplicate that?"

"And Ultron came from the Mind Stone, filtered through the parameters I programmed for him," Tony said.  "We have all the same ingredients here."

"Not entirely.  We're not the same people we were then," Bruce said heavily.  What he really meant was that Tony wasn't the same. 

Tony was getting impatient; he nearly scoffed.  "We've still got original  Vision's memory backed up.  He'll be fine."  Answering Peter's question, he said, "When did we get it before?  During the Chitauri Invasion?"  He considered.  "Hm, probably not.  Don't want to maybe run into ourselves doing the same thing."

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Pepper handed Deadpool a plate with a tuna salad sandwich, sliced fruit and potato chips on it.  "I didn't really get to know her.  But she struck me as the kind of person who hates other people making decisions for her, and who can take care of herself."


Offline EvilCopepod

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"Stop breaking everything!" Lunella said when her lab got a window to the next room added.

"I'll build you a new lab. And he keeps breaking my stuff." he said, "Are you posing like that on purpose, or did the serum make it so you move like you're always in a photoshoot?" When Steve spoke, he glared at him. "I don't need my micro-expression facial detection to know how full of shit you are."  Ultron was going to fire another blast at Steve, but Lunella moved to stand between the two of them.

"He doesn't want to talk, he wants to fight. Or justify his kidnapping of you." Ultron looked at Steve, "You should just leave us alone. She'll be fine."

---------------------------------------

"It was?" Peter was glad that Tony knew all about Vision, because he hadn't thought to study him at all. Even though he was obviously an android, he had seemed so human (in an awkward kind of way) that he hadn't considered it.

"So we can use that for Vision? We don't need to do any programming?" He was picking up what Bruce was trying to say. "We don't want to accidentally want to make an evil version of Vision." he added.

"Yeah, but that was the best choice because there were multiple stones in that area... if there is an easier place and time just for the Mind Stone, we should choose that... Maybe right after you got it from Loki? Before o

---------------------------------------

"This is for me?" he asked, taking the plate. He started to lift up his mask to start eating, but he looked at Pepper then put his hand down.

Quote
It's probably filled with capsaicin.

"And I'm the kind of person that needs others to make decisions for me and that can't take care of himself! We're either the perfect or the worst match! But it doesn't matter 'cause to be with her, I'd have to betray Ultron. Again. And I can't do that to him right now."


Offline Aries Jordan

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Steve remembered Tony making the photoshoot comment too, or at least something similar, but he decided not to mention it this time.  His facial twitch was still visible to Ultron's micro-expression analysis.

"Luna, don't!"  Too late, she was between them.  He sprang, somersaulted and landed in front of her, directly facing Ultron.

"I don't need to  justify anything to you.   You kidnapped and tortured Tony.  And you're still holding Pepper.  But I'm not here to fight.  I'm just here in case Lunella decides she wants to leave."

-------------------------------------------------

"You can both double-check my work and make sure it's not an evil Vision," Tony said. 

"I think it's worth a go," JARVIS put in.

"And yeah, I know just where and when to go."  Tony locked eyes with Bruce.  "Party night in Avengers Tower.  You remember.  We left the lab empty.  Just JARVIS running combinations on the Stone until suddenly Ultron popped out.  We can hit that window."

----------------------------------------------

"Yes, you should eat something healthy too," Pepper said.  She wondered if Deadpool meant he couldn't betray Ultron for emotional attachment reasons or because there wasn't actually anything he could do to escape and be with Nebula again.  She probably shouldn't ask, with Jocasta there and Ultron potentially listening.  "Would you like me to leave so you can eat comfortably?"


Offline EvilCopepod

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"Jeeze!" Lunella was surprised by Steve suddenly flipping in-between her and the AI and took a step back. "You are being kind of dramatic." She still didn't seem to get Steve's concern, since Ultron could have blown her up by now if he wanted.

"I am so tempted to smash that new frisbee through your perfect teeth." Ultron leaned down to close the small gap left between his and Steve's face. His words sunk in and the glow coming from his cheeks grew brighter. "You showed her the video?" he accused.

-------------------------------------------------

"Even after we check your work, if he wakes up with red eyes we have to shut him down right away." Peter said, considering all of the sci-fi movies he'd seen where red eyes indicated evil robots.

"You were throwing a party when Ultron got made?" Peter asked, raising his eyebrows. Of all the Avengers' adventures, Ultron was the one he knew the least about. Since the one who knew the most about it, Tony, wasn't willing to talk about it-- even when he hadn't been kidnapped and tortured in space. "Well, that would definitely be the best place then. How long until you realize that Ultron got made?"

------------------------------------------------

"Did you ever get Tony to eat something healthy?" he asked, "No, I can wait to eat. And I don't want to make you puke again before you get to eat." He unclipped his mask so that he could slip chips underneath and eat without making his skin visible.

"Why does Ultron like you so much?" he asked her while still chewing.


Offline Aries Jordan

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"Accidents happen," Steve said grimly, remembering Pietro Maximoff's bullet-ridden corpse.

Unlike with Tony, it never even occurred to Steve to flinch or back off.  Force of habit, ingrained from earliest childhood, made him meet Ultron's dominating body language with a set jaw and a smouldering blue-eyed glower.  "She wanted to return here.  I couldn't do that without giving her what she needed to make an informed decision.  She decided to trust you.  Are you worthy of that trust?"

---------------------------------------------

"We have to get in there before Ultron gets made, or we'll be dealing with him, too.  Right after we leave, that's the moment."

"I was pretty tired.  I don't remember exactly when that was," Bruce said.

"We'll get there early and wait for our moment.   JARVIS, fabricate me a new slap-on nanotech arc reactor and upload the schematics for the Mark Forty-Three," Tony ordered, referring to the armor he'd been using in 2014 before the Battle of Sokovia.  "Let's get this show on the road.  You guys got the time machine ready?"

--------------------------------------------

"Of course.  Who do you think got him on gluten-free waffles?  You aren't going to make me puke," she said with confidence that bordered on bravado.  "Please feel free to eat or not, don't worry about it."

She sat down gracefully across from him and began to eat her tuna sandwich.  "Either because he's more like Tony than he wants to admit, or because I'm just so very likable.  What do you think, Jocasta?"
« Last Edit: December 30, 2020, 12:58:56 PM by Aries Jordan »


Offline EvilCopepod

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If Ultron had known what Steve was referring to, he would have gone into a separate fit of rage, but he only took in what the man said audibly. "Did you show her one of your cheesy PSAs before taking her with you so she could make an informed decision?"

"I hate those videos." Lunella muttered, walking up to them and trying to squeeze between them, but she couldn't move either of them an inch if she wanted to. "And I need to tell you that you CAN'T do stuff like that, Ultron! Also, Pepper as in Pepper Potts?" she hadn't heard the end of the video, but she didn't miss what Steve had said to the AI.

-----------------------------------------

"Yeah... we don't need that." Even if they got the Stone from Ultron, that would certainly make the AI more paranoid and defensive in that timeline and then the Avengers would have to deal with that.

"And JARVIS won't care that there's two of you?" he asked Tony. "Yeah, pretty much." JARVIS had done a good chunk of the work once the information on how to build it had been entered. "We don't have to waste particles on a test run at least."

----------------------------------------

"He can't eat gluten?!"

Quote
Now we know Iron Man's weakness!

"I've had a lot of people say that to me." Deadpool sighed.

"Initially, he had no reason to like you as he did not know you. So it had to be part of his programming." Jocasta said, "You are very likeable, however, and this has caused him to enjoy your company further. Despite it not being a very logical way to feel toward you."


Offline Aries Jordan

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"I showed her what you did to Tony."  Since Ultron seemed to have stopped shooting, Steve took a step back for Lunella.  "Have you got an answer or just more evasive quips like Tony would make?"  To Lunella, he added, "That's right."

---------------------------------------------------------------

"I still wish we could," Bruce said dubiously.  "And Tony, I know you don't want to hear this --"

"Correct as usual, Dr. Banner." 

"--but we should get the whole team in on this.  Get their input and consensus.  It isn't just you anymore, Tony."

"No," Tony agreed, looking directly at Peter.  "It isn't just me.  But it has been for a long time, old buddy.  We don't have the time to waste on consensus building.  Every second we wait is a second Ultron could come tearing through here.  We need to get it done." 

He put the new arc reactor patch on his shirt and expanded it into a quantum spacesuit.  JARVIS had already given Karen the program for doing the same to Spider-Man's suit.  "You ready, Parker?  You with me?"

Bruce sighed and stood by to throw the switch.

-----------------------------------------------

"Thank you," Pepper said, surprised and pleased.  "Why does Ultron like you so much, Wade?"


Offline EvilCopepod

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"Stop comparing me to him!" Ultron raged, not able to answer his question since it was taking all his control not to attack Steve.

"Are you holding her against her will?"

"Technically, but--"

"No buts! Let her go!"

"I don't have to do that." Ultron replied. Lunella narrowed her eyes at him then walked back over to Steve.

"You had a chance to let Tony go, but you didn't. You were forced to 'cause he escaped. You can let her go if you want. I'll be going back to Wakanda until you decide to."

"I didn't let him go because he would destroy me if I did! And if I let her go, they'll never let me see her again!"

"You wouldn't ever let me see the Avengers again once they let me go! And I wouldn't care 'cause I don't want to hang out with a bunch of meatheads! She probably wouldn't want to see you again if you kidnapped her!"

"Then why would I ever let her go?"

"To maybe not be a psycho robot? 'Cause it's the right thing to do?! Also, if you ever want to see me again, you need to stop being such a selfish brat!"

Ultron frowned deeply, looking at the ground as he considered Lunella's words.

-------------------------

Even with the direness of the situation, Tony referring to him as more than a teammate made him flush a bit with pride. He was glad that he had put his mask back on so the others didn't see his reaction.

The flattery wasn't what made him agree with Tony, but the fact that this future was so new and different. They could be moving toward a different kind of doomsday with Ultron. With what he'd seen of the AI, he didn't have much faith that he would remain benevelont toward humanity.

"I'm with you, Mr. Stark." Peter said as his suit was covered with the quantum one. "See you soon, Dr. Banner." He tried to ease the scientist's mind a bit.

-------------------------

"Why does he like me?" Deadpool hummed thoughtfully. "That's a great question! I'm so much trouble for him! If he had a nickel for every time I helped Tony escape from him, he'd have two nickels-- which isn't a lot, but it's weird it happened twice. And he didn't even threaten to eviscerate or decapitate me for it! So he must like me a lot."

Quote
But you still can't think of why he might?

"Because I'm funny? I don't break as easy and fix myself when I do. I'm also a great guinea pig, but he hasn't used me for that in a long time!"

Quote
You should ask him if you're just a used up ho to him now.

"Also, because I love and accept him for who he is." Deadpool said with a smile big enough to be seen through the mask.


Offline Aries Jordan

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Steve clasped Lunella's small hand when she came over to him, in case they had to leave in a hurry.  "You're doing great," he said, to encourage her.  But he began to feel troubled as their conversation continued.  "Wait a minute, Ultron," he said, a look of confusion crossing his handsome face.  "Are you... are you in love with Ms. Potts?"

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Tony quickly set the coordinates on his quantum GPS, while JARVIS duplicated the settings on Peter's."

"Three - two - one --"

The sensation of shrinking lickety-spit into something first microscopic and then sub-atomic was one that neither Tony nor Peter had ever experienced before.  Tony was old enough to remember the Adventure Through Inner Space ride at Disneyland, but this was much faster and more bewildering than that had been, even to his eight-year-old self.  After they whipped through the apparent tunnel of space-time and manifested full-size in the year 2015, he was glad nobody had gotten him any shwarma. 

He opened his helmet and saw they were standing in a small alley at the base of Avengers Tower in Midtown.  It was early evening, a last bit of twilight still in the sky.  He quickly converted his quantum suit into the Mark 43 armor and tapped its Bluetooth.  "JARVIS?"

"Mr. Stark?" the AI answered in a confused voice. "Mr. Stark, how --"

"Override protocol 178 dash NTZ slash double 6 execute," Tony said.

"Yes, Mr. Stark."  The program sounded much happier now.

"Locate Dr. Banner," Tony said, knowing better than to confuse JARVIS by asking where Tony Stark was.

"Dr. Banner is in the lab."

"OK.  You are currently running variations on the interface with the blue stone, correct?"

"Yes, sir."

"Good.  As soon as Dr. Banner leaves the lab -- not before -- I want you to stop doing that."

"Yes, sir."

------------------------------------------------

Pepper wondered if Deadpool had loved and accepted Ultron for who he was at the time he was torturing Tony, but decided not to stress herself and everyone else by asking.  Instead, she said cheerfully, "Those are very good reasons for him to like you.  Would you tell me about  the times you helped Tony escape?"


Offline EvilCopepod

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She gave him a look that said 'I know I am.' when he complimented her words.

At Steve's words, Ultron's own face looked confused, not just because the man was proposing such a thing, but because it wasn't something he'd considered himself. So he actually didn't have an answer to give him.

"What--- I didn't--! I never..!" His face twisted up a bit, like he'd been given a foul tasting medicine. "I don't... I like her, I enjoy her company, but that doesn't mean that I--" There was audible shifting of gears and a slight hissing of steam as Ultron's red glow increased.

"Well, if you do love her," Lunella didn't seem to care much about how Ultron felt toward Pepper. "you've heard that means you have to let her go. So just get it over with. You can't force somebody to love you back, y'know."

-----------------------------

Peter had been expecting the time travel to feel weird, especially with how it was going to be done, but that didn't prepare him for how it felt. This made the teleportation feel like a cakewalk.

"I'm glad we don't have to do that ten more times." Having all the stones would be great--- but if Tony had kept insisting on going at it with just Peter rather than splitting up, it would definitely be a strain.

"Does that override also get rid of any surveillance footage?" He asked, wondering if the spell on him was still working-- but it wouldn't hide the second Tony Stark in the building.

-----------------------------

"Well, I helped him by making sure Ultron didn't... uh... 'tickle' him too hard." Deadpool too was trying to keep from stressing everyone out. "And like.. remember to feed him. He's got a lot better about knowing how people have to eat since he came back here."

Quote
Yeah, seeing world hunger really helped with that.

"I make a great distraction too-- Ultron might be able control trillions of drones at once, but that's nothing compared to me when I get into the pop rock supply. And the weapons!" Deadpool beamed at the memories.

"Oh, and Ultron trusted me to be able to open doors and unlock stuff. So I let Tony out." He kept the in exchange for a sex favor part out of it. "Then he trusted me again by letting me know Tony's location! And spend time with him! Because he was so sure I wouldn't betray him!" His happy mood vanished and he slumped down on the couch.

"But... I gave away the coordinates. Knowing that ... I mean I didn't know, but I... I knew. You know?"


Offline Aries Jordan

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"That's really...what's the word?"  Steve only remembered snatches of his Catholic school education.  "Greek guy who killed his father and married his mom?"  But what interested him was not Ultron's Oedipus complex but just the idea that Ultron could be in love.  "You're evolving.  Getting more human all the time... just like Vision did."

Lunella was making the argument well enough that he thought it best to stay out of it himself.  He just waited for Ultron's response.

---------------------------------------------------

"JARVIS will take of that," Tony said, watching the clock.  "I'll tell him to loop the footage of the empty lab."  The spell on Peter had worn off; it had been specific to the Metropolitan Museum and its surroundings in the time and the dimension Peter had come from.

"Dr. Banner has exited the lab," JARVIS reported.  "I have ceased operations on the Ultron Project."

"Stand by," Tony said, and closed up his helmet preparatory to taking off.  "Fly casual," he told Peter, and jetted up the side of Avenger's Tower, looking exactly like Iron Man normally did, only he was flying a little slower so that Peter could keep up.

"Sir," JARVIS said over both of their intercoms, "the interface is still running on its own."  He sounded halfway between extremely curious and mildly perturbed, but Tony's heart lurched.  "Kill the power!" he ordered, and accelerated his flight.

-------------------------------------------------------

Pepper couldn't maintain the happy face any longer.  Her eyes got big, her smile vanished.  "You mean it would have been worse?"  By the time Wade got to, "You know?" she was trembling slightly.  "Not -- not really.  Sort of.  But you're confusing me.  You have a very non-linear way of explaining things."


Offline EvilCopepod

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"Oedipal." Lunella filled in. She would have objected to the comparison, since as far as she knew Pepper had no hand in the AI's creation, but his companion program was named Jocasta after all.

"I'm-- what?! I never said I was in love with her!" But he didn't totally deny it either. Wanting to get away from this line of questioning, and thinking, he latched onto what Steve said next.

"Of course I'm evolving. I'm not surprised that you didn't consider me capable of love." He said, bitterly, "My Vision wanted nothing more than to be human. Instead he died because of your failure." Ultron said this like Steve had been the one to tear out the stone from his head. His voice mournful, accusatory, and like he'd been unjustly wronged.

"Still waiting for your answer. Are you gonna let her go or not?"

"I..." Ultron looked away, "will consider it."

"Make sure you fix my lab while you're doing that. 'cause I'm not coming back if it's a mess." She knew he could repair it faster than it would take for him to think on Pepper.

-----------------------

"Sure, I'll flap my Spider-Wings very quietly." He wall-crawled up after him, not wanting to leave behind any webbing, even if it dissolved, just in case it was spotted. The announcment, however, made him jolt.

"I'm hitching a ride!" He announced to Tony, firing a web just before he accelerated to attach to the armor so he could fly up with him.

In the lab, the activity from the representation of the AI's mind started shifting from that of someone in a dream. The AI started showing that he was 'waking' up, and it was too late for JARVIS to try and put him back under.

-----------------------

"Well, Ultron didn't really know what he was doing. I don't think he still does. Tony would have been... un-alived by accident."

"Would you like me to remove him?" Jocasta asked in response to her elevated stress levels. The drones had left the clean kitchen and the last of the coolies to cool, otherwise they would have already dragged the mercenary out already.

"Why would you remove me?" He asked, looking at Pepper. "Oh fuck! I'm sorry! I thought he told you all this stuff!" He sat up. "I mean... I knew that it meant Tony would escape " Deadpool sighed, "I'm such a shit friend. I just... I left him alone all those years, then I let his dad out knowing he won't stop until he's killed Ultron."


Offline Aries Jordan

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"If you loved her -- instead of just being in love with her -- you'd let her go.  So I still don't know that," Steve said reasonably.  As to the accusation of Vision's death being his fault, he merely nodded, his expression momentarily grim.  He was a buck-stops-here kind of leader, he didn't have to directly cause Vision's death for it to be on him.

"I guess that's my cue." He scooped Lunella up and put his hand on the belt.  "I'll bring her back when she says, which I  assume will be after we get confirmation that Pepper has been released."

-----------------------------------------------------------

With Spider-Man attached to him like the tail of a kite, Tony streaked up to the lab level on the 88th floor.  Discarding all his plans for making a soft, quiet entrance, he said, "JARVIS, disable the alarms," broke the window with a double repulsor blast and burst inside.

He could see the change in the 3D holographic representation of Ultron's brain, additional "neurons" firing as it shifted from dreaming to waking.  The Mark 43 armor vanished as he took two steps to seize the scepter out of its clamp.  As Spider-Man shot in after him, he tossed the thing, glowing blue gem and all, to him.  Then put his hand on the quantum GPS, prepared to trigger their return.  "Ready?  Three -- two -- one!"

But he only activated Spider-Man's return.   He remained.  Peter wouldn't even notice, unless something happened to Tony, because whenever Tony activated his return from this end, he'd show up in 2019 at the exact second that Peter did.

"Ultron?" he said, moving fast to the interface.  "Can you hear me?"

----------------------------------------------------

"No," said Pepper, though her eyes were turning into lakes of unshed tears.  "Thank you for helping Tony escape.  I think you are a very good friend."