Victoria's heels clicked softly on the floor as she followed Mr. Stark down the hall. Her dark hair was pulled up into a bun, leaving sweeping bangs tucked behind her ear. Her plain white dress shirt was tucked neatly into the black knee-length skirt she wore, and the white coat over that gave her a dignified look.
"Honestly, I understand why Fury's doing this," Tony spoke as the neared the common room, "But does he really think we need a doctor here all the time? I mean, I'm sure you're a busy woman."
"On the contrary, Mr. Stark," Victoria's English accent was sharp but sweet, "I needed something to keep me busy."
"Well, we're all about keeping busy here." Tony chuckled and held the door for her
Victoria nodded a silent thank you and walked inside the comfortably decorated room. The others were already gathered there, for what they hadn't been told. Bruce looked up when the door opened and immediately recognized the white lab coat of a doctor. Natasha noticed the click of heels coming to a stop and locked eyes with the only other woman in the room. Clint was perched on the arm of a couch near Natasha and followed her gaze. Thor was looking out the large window, seemingly uninterested. Steve was the only one standing, as the captain he was the first one to make a move in new situations.
"Tony, what is this meeting about? Fury said something about someone new coming to the tower?" Steve asked, gesturing to Victoria, "Is this her? What's her role?"
"Calm down, Cap. You're gonna scare the poor girl." Clint chided him
Victoria adjusted her glasses with a small smile, "You'll find that I don't scare as easily as you may think, Mr. Barton."
Tony had to hold in a chuckle at the exchange between Clint and the new doctor. He should have known that they wouldn't hit it off quickly. Steve could appreciate her courage but wondered if she was out of her league. Victoria approached Bruce and shook his hand.
"Dr. Banner, lovely to meet you. From what I'm told, my office will be right above your lab." She smiled.
"This is Dr. Smith, our S.H.I.E.L.D. appointed personal care physician," Tony explained, "Fury hired her, not me."
"Oh please, call me Victoria." She waved a hand dismissively as she stood straight.
Steve tried to keep his composure when he heard her first name. It was the same name that was scrawled in delicate handwriting across his chest. But the last name wasn't Smith.
"Fury thinks we need a babysitter?" Clint objected.
"I think it would be fun having another girl around." Natasha gave him a playful push
Victoria chuckled and faced Steve with cool determination, "And what say you, Captain?"
Steve noticed the almost teasing tone she had. He crossed his arms and chewed the inside of his cheek.
"I think having a certified medical professional around would be wise." He finally gave his verdict, "You are certified, aren't you?"
Victoria narrowed her eyes slightly at him returning the teasing, "Of course. I've had a lot of time to earn my degree." She smiled as if making a joke that no one understood.
The two looked at each other for an uncomfortably long time. Steve couldn't help but study her features. Dark hair against pale skin, a softly pointed nose, high cheekbones, full lips, and black-rimmed glasses framing eyes that were an unsettling shade of green. They were much too bright, almost fake looking. Tony cleared his throat and the two blinked like a spell over them had been broken.
"I was going to show Dr. Smith her office, lab, and living quarters. I mean, if you're done staring at her." Tony looked between the two curiously.
Victoria blushed brightly at Tony's comment and cleared her throat, "Yes, um, excuse me."
She walked to the door, swiftly followed by Tony. The latter led her to the elevator and they took it up to one of the highest levels. Victoria hummed softly and tapped her fingers against her leg as they ascended through Avengers Tower. Once the door opened Tony took the lead again and presented the large laboratory combined with an office. Victoria's eyes sparkled as she looked around, her lips parted in awe. The office was tucked into one corner near the door. A large desk, a pair of comfortable chairs, and a bookcase against the wall were all it consisted of, but it was cozy and simple. In the center of the room was a padded examination table with an adjustable back. Along one wall was a long table with various things on it, including a microscope, test tubes, stethoscope, etc. The drawers contained suppressors, swabs, and such for tests. On the table was a cardboard box.
"I had someone grab what was left of your last place... The rest is down in your room, but there wasn't much salvageable." Tony explained
Victoria ran a hand over the topmost box thoughtfully, "Thank you, Mr. Stark... I... I can't repay you for what you've done for me."
Tony shrugged, "You can work hard, and be around when we need you."
Victoria's eyes watered a bit as she nodded.
"Well," Tony clapped his hands together, "I'll let you get unpacked. Call if you need anything, okay?"
She nodded again as Tony left, scribbling down directions to her private quarters. Taking a moment to compose herself, Victoria opened the box. It was mostly full of medical books she had collected over the years. Tucked against the side of the box was a large framed photograph. Luckily it had been undamaged in the altercation. She could see her reflection in the glass, a group of smiling women looking back at her. In the second row to the left, she saw herself among her classmates. She still looked the same as in that black and white photo. Swallowing down tears she hung it on the wall in the office area behind her desk. Before letting it go she read the heading one more time.
Royal Army Medical Corps.
Graduating Class of 1940