In stream the other day, we started talking about an Avengers Mall AU, and now I can’t stop thinking about it, because I have so many years of bad retail stories built up in my head and non-powered AUs usually don’t work for me, but the longer I think about it, the funnier this gets.
Steve and Sam are two guys who retired from their military branches and teamed up to run an artesian bespoke candy shop. Steve has no idea half of their sales comes from the fact that Sam put the candy pulling hook in the front window and teenage girls just stand there, drooling. Sam is totally aware of this, and uses it to ALL his advantage when he’s doing the sugar work.
Bucky took a part time job at the Hot Topic across the way because hell, he was spending all his time hanging out with Sam and Steve, might as well get paid. He was the only reliable employee over the age of seventeen; he is now the manager and he’s FURIOUS about it. His staff is made up of Nico, Kamala and Sam Alexander and various people who get hired and then don’t make it through the training because Bucky glaring at you while you take register training is just SO HARD TO HANDLE. No one is sure if he’s after Sam or Steve or both.
The SHIELD crew runs a pretty decent mall restaurant, but yeah, used to be a Golden Corral and Fury reserves the right to yell “Do you see a buffet here?” at anyone dumb enough to think it still is. He doesn’t actually do it, because most of the people who are confused enough to ask are retirees who remind him of his grandma, but still. He reserves the right. Nat is a truly terrifying line cook, Maria’s front of house, and Phil’s the head waiter. Clint doesn’t actually work there, but he’ll put on an apron and belt out an impressive rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ in exchange for free food, and no one else on staff wants to do it, so he eats there A LOT.
Clint is always in the mall. In the back corridors. Hanging out in the food court. Wandering up and down the anchor store escalators. Everyone thinks he works somewhere else. No one knows where he actually works. There is a betting pool. It has been building for YEARS.
Jan runs the sort of high end boutique that has like, four outfits in two sizes on six gigantic racks. There are no prices. You do not ask how much it is. You know if you can afford it. If she likes you, you can afford it.
Thor runs the hardware store. No one knows why the hardware store is there. This is not the sort of place one would see a hardware store. Thor says he inherited it from his father, and it was there before the mall, and no one really wants to look into it. Mostly, they seem to get by on selling knives.. Big knives. Little knives. Knives as long as your arm. They get by on selling knives, because who’s buying screws at this place? Oh, right, anyone Sif TELLS to buy screws. "You need screws.“ "Oh, no, I-” "You can always use more screws.“ "Y-yes, ma'am.” She might be domming half of their customers without knowing it. The Warriors Three run the stock room. Badly.
Bruce runs the used bookstore down on the lower level where he can’t really afford the rent but the mall management like saying there’s a bookstore, and no one else is going to rent that hole, so he gets to stay, hiding in his piles and piles and piles of used books. Mostly science and history, but he does a brisk business in romance novels and murder mystery paperbacks. He likes it down there. He wishes people would stop trying to get him to come upstairs to socialize. He also kind of wishes people would stop coming down TO socialize. His cousin Jennifer runs the register and helps the customers most days, she’s very quiet and very mild mannered and wears very lumpy clothes and giant eighties style glasses, so no one recognizes her when she goes to her second job, as a crossfit instructor for the gym on the top floor. Jenn is, as they say, RIPPED. Put her in a leotard and her whole personality changes, it’s like she’s a different person.
Carol is a recovering alcoholic ex-pilot who runs the bar at the ‘bad’ chain restaurant down on the far end of the ground floor. Other than the SHIELD place or the food court, it’s the only place to eat in the mall, and honestly, you’d be better off in the food court. The food is trash, but she can mix a mean mojito and she knows every secret of every worker in the place, and she’s paid double on Saturdays because she’s her own bouncer.
Jessica Drew runs the arcade on the main floor, one of those stupid ones with 'glow mini-golf’ and games that constantly spit out tickets, you know, legalized gambling for children. It’s a chain, but the give out far too many prizes and she and her staff (Peter, Miles, Anya) would be fired if they also weren’t the highest grossing location on the eastern seaboard. They throw the best birthday parties in the state, and have a waiting list that’s like, months long.
Wanda’s shop sells… Something. No one knows what any of this stuff does. Or if it’s legal to own. But when you find something you want, OH GOD YOU REALLY WANT IT. She mostly sits and reads, and drinks tea from Hank McCoy’s tea shop.
Stephen Strange quit his job as a surgeon and retired to run a magic and joke shop. If you ask him why, he just shrugs and said he made some very bad choices. A relative somewhere oversea, Asia, Clint says it was somewhere in Asia, died and left him some sort of inheritance. So now he just sells fake rubber vomit and teaches slight of hand. Buy him a drink, and learn more than you wanted to know about card tricks. Walk into his shop, and be prepared to sit through at LEAST four card tricks before you can escape.
Greer run’s “Tigra’s Treasure Trove” on the second floor, it’s the anime and manga and gaming and comic shop. She wears cat ears and a tail. Every day. No one’s sure if she does it to bring in the otaku, or if it’s a lifestyle choice. No one wants to ask.
Tony owns the mall. Owns like a hundred malls across the country. No one knows, Obie does the day to day running of the management company, but Tony owns them. He’s mostly in it for the buying and selling, but he likes this mall. This one. He likes it here.
He has a Sharper Image type store on the top floor. It’s him and Rhodey and Pepper and Pepper will kill them both one of these days but he sells the sort of stuff you do not need but God you want it. You walk into his store and it’s all apple store chic, white and chrome and gleaming surfaces, collapseable tablets and robots and holographic projectors and all the geek chic that you want and everyone in the mall wants something from him, they’ve all got something on layaway (he only does layaway for other retail workers because he doesn’t want to keep track of this stuff) except Steve and it makes him insane. He spends far too much time trying to figure out what he can stock or create or build that will get Steve into his shop.
Pepper calls them “Steve-Grabbers,” Like 'grandma grabbers’ but designed to attract the most sincere hipster she’s ever met and she’d kill Tony over adding this stuff to stock without telling her, but it all sells. It all sells. In his desperate attempt to attract Steve, Tony misses and attracts EVERYONE ELSE.
May 21 2016 - German Neo-Nazis of Road Crew Ostwestfalen tried to visit a protest organised in Rome by Italian Fascist group CasaPound, but they got stuck in the anti-fascist counterprotest. The antifascists quickly figured out who they were leading to them fleeing in a panic hitting several other cars as they were being chased down the street. [video]
<b>Fellow student:</b> You wear a lot of black.<p/><b>Me:</b> I know, I'm a stage manager so I have to wear black during shows.<p/><b>My mom:</b> *noticing I wear nothing but black* Honey, are you doing alright? Anything I can get you?<p/><b>Me:</b> No, I'm fine. But maybe another black shirt?<p/><b>Venue manager:</b> I can only remember seeing you wear color like one time.<p/><b>Me:</b> .......yeah I'm just always here working...<p/><b>Fellow SM:</b> So what's your favorite brand to get black pants from?<p/><b>Me:</b> Honestly whatever's cheap and fits well.<p/><b>Some random person:</b> What's with all the black? Haha going to a funeral?<p/><b>Me:</b> ......<p/><b>Me:</b> I'm a stage manager dEAL WITH IT I WEAR ALL BLACK. ALL. THE. TIME.<p/></p>
part of the reason i really love fic/headcanons where the whole main fake ah crew is living in geoff’s penthouse is because it means there’s absolutely no way people aren’t walking in on each other doing weird shit
and i don’t mean “lol someone caught someone else jacking it or banging” (even though i’m sure there’s plenty of that, let’s be real, nobody uses the sock method and even if they did, no one would pay attention to it), or even “dear god someone caught ryan brutally murdering some poor guy” (even though i’m sure there’s plenty of that, too)
i mean weird shit that’s like, the normal kind of weird shit. the shit you do when you’re home alone and confident that nobody’s gonna walk in and see you in your underwear singing into a wooden spoon
jack gets halfway through furiously rapping nicki minaj’s verse from monster before turning around and noticing gavin standing, thrown off and a little impressed, in the doorway (and doesn’t stop, real talk, when you’re on a roll you gotta take it home)
ray walks in on ryan weeping openly at ‘all dogs go to heaven 2′
ryan catches geoff, drunk off his ass, ordering seven hundred dildos online (”it’s for a prank, haywood!” geoff hollers after ryan, who’s never left geoff’s place so quickly in his life. “it’s for a prank!”)
michael catches the tail end of gavin narrating apparently everything he’s doing, including pissing, like he’s david attenborough
jack walks out onto one of the balconies to see ray, stoned as fuck and wearing three pairs of sunglasses, trying to shoot the actual sun with his sniper rifle
(bonus: ray hears weird squeaking noises from one of the rooms and walks in to see ryan futilely trying to work a leather catsuit off of himself
“it’s not what it looks like.”
“it looks like you’re stuck in a leather catsuit.”
“…okay, it’s exactly what it looks like, but if you tell anyone, i swear to god the police will never find your body— ray, stop laughing at me. stop it.”)
WHY’S THIS SO SAD AND EMO WHAT HAPPENED HERE,,, no but… imagine geoff’s leaving the fake ah crew for a while too and this is gonna be their last ride together for that period of time!!!! a reminder of what they’ve achieved together as a crew, they run this town, shape up man! …. also it was just an excuse to draw a sunset
Little edit here: Some of y’all have informed me that Geoff is only leaving for a few weeks, BUT FUCK IT, IMAGINE IF THE FAKE AH CREW GEOFF IS LEAVING FOR WHO KNOWS HOW LONG!!!! IS IT 5? 10? YEARS?? WEEKS?? WHY IS HE LEAVING?? IS IT FOR ANOTHER MISSION? IS IT A RUNNING AWAY FROM THE LAW THING? DOES HE LEAVE THE CREW TO PROTECT THEM?? ITS SAD!!! MAKE! IT!! SADDER!!
Wait a second - if Star Wars is in the past (”Long time ago, far, far away, etc, etc”), and we’re in the present, and Star Trek is in the future… does this mean we could have one of the Star Trek crews running into the ruins of an old jedi or sith temple or something?! Like, not even necessarily saying that that’s what it is, just a bunch of vague “The inhabitants seemed to be some sort of spiritual order,” “But also training areas for battle,” “The decayed remains of some sort of crystal-based technology” comments, just enough to have everyone flipping their shit because hell yeah, dramatic irony, we know exactly what’s going on!
Or, oooo~ running into SW civilizations, but it’s WAAAAAAAY in the future for them compared to what we’ve previously seen, so stuff is REALLY different, who knows what the Jedi Order looks like now, if it’s even still called that, like holy shit, imagine THAT first contact encounter! Imagine how much world-building you could do with both universes! Or throw in time-travel - ST LOVES time travel, and SW loves weird jedi shit (and has a fandom that loves time travel) and just- (flapping arms and uncontrollable excitement). IT WOULD JUST BE SO COOL, OKAY?!? Dang, what if Earth turned out to be some lost colony from the SW area of the galaxy and everything we thought we knew about history before a certain point turned out to be wrong, every single cryptid and fantastical being in our mythos could be based off some real species that got warped and misremembered over thousands of years of retelling like some insane game of telephone-
Geoff goes on his vacation sabbatical (“Geoff you’re just renting a beach house across town” “fuck you IM ON VACATION!”) and Lindsay is tired of having to stay a safe distance away from the danger to run the crew, so she hands the reigns over to Trevor. He’s got his head on pretty well and everyone likes him. And he’s clever af.
But then, he starts running things…
Trevor: plans a small weapons deal
Michael & Gavin: go to deal, kill the dealer and their men, take all of the weapon inventory
Trevor: sends Lindsay and Ryan down to the convince store
Lindsay & Ryan: return with 2 cases of Gatorade and 3 kittens
Trevor: “Jeremy, I need you and Matt to-”
Jeremy: “can’t. Minecraft day.”
Matt: “gotta build a death trap”
Trevor: buys a new table
Jack: (drunk af) “How can I destroy this so we get a nicer one?” pulls out a warhammer
Trevor: looks into the camera like he’s on the office
So Trevor decided to get some revenge. He picks up a bunch of glitter bombs and rigs them around the penthouse. Jack opens a cabinet, and glitter attacks. Michael opens the media center to put Mario Party in, and poof glitter, he gripes and goes to the bathroom to clean off and opens the medicine cabinet. Glitter bombed again. Ryan opens his private safe under his bed, and he is covered in black skull shaped glitter. Gavin opens his closet and gold glitter rains on him. That night everyone sits down for dinner, sparkly and grumbling at Trevor. Then Jeremy runs in, half covered in purple glitter, other half in orange, and yells “IVE BEEN RIMMY'ed!!!” with the biggest smile on his face.
Things to have with you before you walk through that stage door; Mostly for us crew members.
Deodorant - Spray, and lots of it.
Gum - For all of that coffee.
A huge bottle of water - Let’s be real here.
Jeans - Comms do not stay on leggings, hear it from the leggings expert. Invest in some high quality black jeans or cargo pants for all of your theatre endeavours!
Torch - Trust me, you’re gonna need it.
Leatherman - Or any multitool. Helpful in every single possible way.
Tape - In all of its varieties, spike, electric, gaff. It will save you a whole lot of time.
Leather, enclosed shoes - I’ve found black Doc Martens to be the perfect show shoe. Others prefer black sneakers, work shoes or school shoes. People also love their steel capped boots. It’s all about personal preference, just have some good enclosed shoes.
A day diary - To pencil in all of those techs and performances. So helpful on the spot if people are speculating about the schedule.
A separate journal - I have a personal black moleskin notebook that I like to call my crew journal, a place to write down everything I’m learning. Tips, problems, printed out emails and schedules, photos and considerations. It’s my bible, ok.
Be prepared and hydrated, and enjoy your next show! xxx
“What will you do with your shares?” “Find a ship,” said Inej. “Put together a crew.” “Help run an empire,” said Jesper. “Try not to run it into the ground,” said Wylan. “And you, Kaz?” Nina asked. “Build something new,” he said with a shrug. “Watch it burn.”
Today, I fucked up... by causing an explosion 40,000ft above the Atlantic Ocean on an international flight
I was running a bit late for a long-haul flight from Delhi to London, so I quickly bought some snacks and shoved them in my travel bag as I ran to the boarding gate.
About 4 hours in (whilst half the people were asleep and the other half were getting annoyed that the TVs had stopped working), there was a massive bang and the whole plane launched into hysteria.
I can’t even explain how loud it was, especially given the plane was in near silence. Immediately, every baby started screaming as loudly as they could and every mother started crying madly. It didn’t help that it was pitch black either, so all the flight crew running around amongst the panicking masses couldn’t see where they were going at all, so just ran straight into all the passengers as they jumped out of their seats. The people who had been sleeping woke up to a scene normally saved for badly produced films and needless to say also began manically hyperventilating.
After a few minutes of sheer terror, the lights came back on and everyone gradually calmed down. My travel bag was revealed as the source of the blast - obviously to my surprise - and was carefully opened. Tons of what looked like sawdust/powder fell out onto the chairs below and once again everyone freaked out for a few seconds.
As it turns out, in India they hyperinflate their crisp/chip packets so the contents don’t get crushed. They’re also dirt cheap, so I bought about 8 packets (those were the snacks I’d grabbed in a rush earlier). The pressure built up as we ascended, and when the plane jolted from the turbulence, they all blew up simultaneously.
And that is how I accidentally triggered a bomb scare on an international flight.
TL;DR: I made the mistake of squashing lots of hyper-inflated chip packets into my bag on a flight and they all exploded. Everyone lost their minds.