Title: Unauthorized Access
Author: Del Rion (delrion.mail (at) gmail.com)
Fandom: Iron Man (MCU)
Rating: T / FRT
Characters: J.A.R.V.I.S., Tony Stark (Iron Man) + OMCs.
Summary: In the chaos following the Battle of New York, the job including a break-in into Stark Tower should be an easy one – in theory.
Complete. Part of “Genius, AI & Bots” series.
Written for: My card on Trope Bingo’s round 3 (FREE SPACE square; used trope: “locked in”)
Disclaimer: Iron Man, Avengers and Marvel Cinematic Universe, including characters and everything else, belong to Marvel, Marvel Studios, Jon Favreau, Joss Whedon, Shane Black, Paramount Pictures and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. In short: I own nothing; this is pure fiction created to entertain likeminded fans for no profit whatsoever.
Beta: Mythra (mythras_fire)
About Unauthorized Access: This story is bending the trope a lot. (Apologies to anyone who came in expecting normal ‘locked in’ drama.)
J.A.R.V.I.S. is such a troll in this one, taking pleasure in the misery of others. (Word of advice? Never break into a facility governed by Tony Stark’s AI.)
Story and status: Below you see the writing process of the story. If there is no text after the title, then it is finished and checked. Possible updates shall be marked after the title.
Three men enter the private elevator with a code that fools the security system but rings false to J.A.R.V.I.S. All three of them are dressed in workmen’s clothes which makes them blend in with the crews working around Stark Tower, repairing the damage caused by what had been dubbed the ‘Battle of New York’.
One of the men presses a button for the penthouse. The code they input earlier closes the elevator doors and begins the car’s ascent.
J.A.R.V.I.S. scans their security passes, finding them falsified, then searches their faces. Police records yield results on two of the men: Tyrell Alvarez, 42, with a record of theft and multiple assaults, as well as Lloyd Moore, 39, with a list of crimes from grand theft auto to illegal weapons deals and numerous other petty crimes. The third man is flagged in the S.H.I.E.L.D. database with an alias ‘Linus Wang’; a programming genius, 29, who crossed over to the dark side of the law several years ago, disappeared, and hasn’t surfaced again until now.
Mr. Wang’s work would have easily granted him access to the Tower, which is impressive enough, but what most people don’t know – or tend to forget – is that there is a sentient AI governing the most important locations owned by Tony Stark.
J.A.R.V.I.S. seizes control of the elevator and halts it between floors 54 and 55, much to the confusion of the three men inside.
“What’s going on?” Mr. Moore asks, looking around.
Mr. Wang jabs at the elevator buttons and frowns; a bead of sweat is making its way down his temple, his pulse indicating nervousness. J.A.R.V.I.S. raises the temperature of the air in the elevator shaft, aware of how the confined space is likely to affect the three trapped individuals; making them sweat ought to make them more anxious.
“Why did we stop?” Mr. Alvarez asks, shifting menacingly – making Mr. Wang glance at the bigger man nervously. “Why aren’t the doors opening?” Mr. Alvarez demands.
“I don’t know!” Mr. Wang stammers, trying the buttons again. “Perhaps there is a problem…”
“Could they know we’re here?” Mr. Moore wonders, searching for cameras but not once falling upon the mechanical eyes J.A.R.V.I.S. is using to track them.
“If they did, they would be waiting for us on top, or in the lobby – not leaving us stuck here,” Mr. Alvarez decides. “Get us moving!” he orders Mr. Wang.
“Right,” Mr. Wang nods and kneels on the floor, wiping sweat from his face as he attempts to pry open a panel beside the buttons.
Mr. Moore also wipes his face, giving the elevator a frustrated look. “Why is it so damn hot in here?”
“Maybe there’s a blackout,” Mr. Alvarez guesses.
“The Tower is powered separate from the rest of the city,” Mr. Wang scoffs. “There are no ‘blackouts’ here.”
“Whatever,” Mr. Alvarez mutters.
Mr. Wang looks at the circuitry in the elevator’s wall then digs out a palm-sized computer from his pocket and starts connecting it to one wire at the time. “There’s nothing wrong with the elevator,” he finally decides, sounding confident before he realizes what that means.
“Then why are we stuck?” Mr. Moore asks, yanking at the neck of his overalls. “Why is it so hot?!”
“It won’t get better with you complaining about it,” Mr. Alvarez grunts and looks up. “We need to get moving. Find the service hatch.”
“You’re going to climb out?” Mr. Wang blinks. “That is extremely dangerous! You could get electrocuted or fall down the shaft – or if the elevator starts moving again, you could get crushed.”
“Then it’s a good thing you’re such a small guy, because you’re going up there,” Mr. Alvarez decides.
Mr. Wang visibly starts. “Me? No, I… I’m afraid of heights!”
Not to be fooled by that, Mr. Alvarez moves to tower over Mr. Wang, scowling down at him. “Moore, find that hatch. And you, mousey, will go up there and fix this thing. Otherwise you’re useless to me and I’ll just toss you off this crazy ride.”
Mr. Wang swallows convulsively. “Okay,” he manages to say.
Together, Mr. Alvarez and Mr. Moore find the service hatch and manage to force it open. The cameras within the elevator shaft give J.A.R.V.I.S. a perfect view of Mr. Wang’s pale face when the other two boost him up and onto the roof of the elevator.
“Oh my God,” Mr. Wang whimpers.
“Get to working!” Mr. Alvarez snaps up at him.
“On what?!” Mr. Wang shouts back belligerently. “There’s nothing to –” He screams when J.A.R.V.I.S. releases the elevator and drops it by two feet. The short distance almost upsets Mr. Wang’s balance and he defies all common sense as he squirms head-first back into the elevator, falling on top of Mr. Moore.
The jolt scares all of them and J.A.R.V.I.S. wonders whether they have learned their lesson already.
Then again, there have been several occasions when Tony has displayed severe annoyance at people trying to rob him, break into his facilities or otherwise harass him, and there is a certain sadistic pleasure J.A.R.V.I.S. takes in eliciting the scared screams of three grown men when the elevator suddenly drops five more floors before grinding to a halt again.
“What the hell?!” Mr. Alvarez roars, shaking like a leaf.
All three of them are on the floor of the elevator, clutching onto the walls as if that might help, the sensation of free-fall leaving them in an animal-like fear. J.A.R.V.I.S. cannot tell for certain but it is possible Mr. Moore lost control of his bladder somewhere between floors 51 and 49.
“J,” Tony suddenly gives J.A.R.V.I.S. a virtual poke to get the AI’s attention. “What are you doing? Tower Security just called me about some elevator malfunction…”
“I am currently in the process of apprehending trespassers, sir,” J.A.R.V.I.S. replies smoothly, attention divided between the Tower and Tony’s phone.
“Did someone from a work crew get into my elevator again?” Tony almost growls.
“I believe they entered under false pretenses, planning, to borrow the phrase, ‘to rob you blind’. One of the men passed the security system.”
“Huh,” Tony huffs, not at all pleased. “Please give them hell. Also, notify Security – because I know you haven’t yet.”
“Of course, sir.”
J.A.R.V.I.S. notifies the security officers in the lobby and has some fun with the elevator, allowing it to ascend almost to the top floor before dropping it down again, several times, until finally lowering it to the ground floor. As the doors open, Mr. Alvarez and Mr. Moore manage to crawl out – right on top of the feet of the security detail – while Mr. Wang remains in a corner of the elevator, clutching his hands together in a silent prayer. J.A.R.V.I.S. is fairly certain he will never try to break into Stark Industries again – and it is quite possible he will never enter another elevator again, either.
“Gentlemen,” J.A.R.V.I.S. says through the elevator speakers, “I hope you have enjoyed your stay at Stark Tower. Please refrain from accessing unauthorized areas in the future.”