Patron shoutout to Demahom @
The capital of Wakanda was the only sight the group of visitors could see with the aircraft of the hidden country constructed without any windows. Of course, the fact that the aircraft wasn't designed to fulfill civilian desires justified the lack of windows but as Okoye stated, she continued to introduce the nation to the benefactors of the king in a detailed manner, going as far as to even describe the religion of each tribe governing the collective area of the nation together.
The most prominent was the Panther Goddess Bast, a being Nik had read upon in the library supervised by Dr. Strange but hearing the more traditional description of the Panther Goddess, Ape God, Crocodile God, and many more, the group was colored impressed. For a hidden nation, the head of the King's harem was sure to shower the group with knowledge that not many from the outer world knew. But then again, Okoye did keep on addressing Nik and Cindy as their benefactor.
Once again, the aircraft descended vertically as the kickback from the engines roused Anna from her sleep. She had nodded off after Okoye began describing the Rhinoceros God of the nation.
"We have arrived. Outside, the Queen Mother and the King will be waiting for you all. But there is no need to worry about social etiquette. King T'Challa has integrated the customs of the outer world and does not take offense in the lack of needless pleasantries," Okoye explained and walked out with the backside of the shuttle opening. After a loud sound of pressurized air dispersing, the group could see the landing spot to be some form of the verandah, a large one at that.
Outside the confines of the aircraft, flanked by the equally fiercely dressed members of Dora Milaje, stood three royalties. Foremost stood a young, well-built, dark-skinned man with handsome features, trimmed beard. Behind him stood a middle-aged woman all in white and a white mantle on top of her head. Alongside the woman, with her hands behind her back and her expression laced with boredom stood a young girl, no older than Nik, Cindy, or Anna. At least, this world's Nik.
"Welcome to Wakanda!" the man, most probably the king, stepped forward with Okoye making her way beside him. "Y-your grace!" Mary stammered, making Nik and Anna realize that aside from sadistic tendencies, Mary had a bit of fanaticism for royalties. After all, royalties were a rarer breed than the most endangered species of this day and age. Similar to Mary, but for different reasons, Albert and Nari bowed lightly, chiming, "Your grace," simultaneously.
An accomplished smirk touched Okoye while Coulson walked closer to the King and brought his hand forward, "It's been a few years," T'Challa smiled and shook the agent's head firmly.
"Your grace," Coulson smiled. He had enough people skills to realize that T'Challa was a man who pursued a life out of the bounds of tradition. That's why he studied overseas. That's why he proposed marriage to a foreigner, albeit a failed endeavor it turned out to be. And that is why he favored handshakes over bows.
"And you must be Silk," T'Challa looked towards Cindy and then turned his gaze to Nik and Anna, his expression fascinated. "And... Vanish."
"Kuf!" a stifled giggle attracted everybody's attention as the middle-aged woman glared at the young girl standing beside her.
"What? Vanish is a cool name. But I've seen his footage... it's like calling the Hulk Green Man." The girl stated with an accusing tone as Nik, for the first time seriously considered his naming sense. Maybe he was the weird one after all.
Meanwhile, Nari looked towards Nik with an astonished gaze. He was Vanish! Her role model!
"Apologies," T'Challa shook his head, "Let me introduce you to my mother, The Queen Mother of the nation and she is our temporary head of the research facility, and our royal sister, Shuri."
"Your highness," Coulson slightly bent his knee this time but understanding that waiting for hours until the foreigners learned their nation's pleasantries wouldn't look good on their side, T'Challa led the procession inside the archaic-looking building.
With the interior of the apparent castle lavish and exotic to the brim, T'Challa casually sat on one of the sofas present, enjoying the sensation of the leather far more than the seat of his throne against his butt and aside from Okoye, all the personal guards waited outside the room. His mother and sister flanked him while Mary didn't even focus on T'Challa but the decorations within the building. It wasn't her fanaticism for the king that excited Mary, Nik realized, rather it was her career. The way Mary had been observing everything carefully while enjoying the sensation of meeting a royalty itself, Nik was sure that her blog would find interesting content the very next day. And if all went well, the Global Magazine.
"Agent, I realize that Wakanda's willingness to invite other 'heroes' seem to have opened many possibilities for your... supervisors," the Queen Mother began with a smile, making Coulson all attentive before dousing water to his flames. "It doesn't," she instantly cut off all of his hopes. "The objective of this invitation is to express our gratification to Ms. Moon and Mr. Minion."
"As my mother said. This trip is supposed to be unofficial and purely entertainment. Even I would appreciate if certain matters are not discussed in our current meeting," T'Challa spoke up as Coulson pursed his lips in defeat.
"My brother had planned to show you the traditional sites of the nation but I talked him down," Shuri smiled at Cindy and Anna. It was expected of her to make the two girls feel more comfortable and last night's lecture from her mother only firmed the outcome of the visit, "So, we can form two groups. While his grace," she smiled towards T'Challa, "would show your parents and caretakers the traditional sites and whatever else they wish... it would be my responsibility to keep you entertained. Pick me," she whispered in the end.
The words made Nari furrow her brows. She still hadn't talked out the fact that Nik was vanish but it seemed she would have to wait a little while longer for that. After agreeing to the proposition, Mary kissed Anna goodbye and tiptoed while following T'Challa alongside Coulson, Nari, Albert. Half of Dora Milaje alongside Okoye left with them, meanwhile, the Queen Mother decided to leave matters into Shuri's hands.
With the remaining half of the Dora Milaje still waiting for orders, Shuri smiled and clapped her hands. "So? Who wants to follow me in my lab and see cool gadgets?"
Her words lighting Anna's and Cindy's expression while leaving Nik slightly confused.
He might not flex his mind regarding conspiracies of the world or even the ones that held a control over his life like Kaal's life or death, the three ancestor's actions, and even Supreme Seraphim's existence that seemed to be shrouded in mystery with each tale painting him differently, but Shuri's apparent lack of decorum and showing the outsider's her country's technology easily showed some form of scheme.
Now, it was either Shuri being a young kid, even younger than Anna, from the looks of it and unable to make a better plan for whatever she was planning or the girl herself based her plans on the consideration that the opposite side only consisted of kid's her age. And now that Nik thought of it, the separation of groups seemed to be supporting the latter of the two bases.
And as Nik had expected, after experiencing the joy of exotic technology and interactive hovering screens with futuristic designs that could only be seen in the movies or Tony Stark's lab, according to a few sources, Shuri brought out the real objective and made Nik realize that what Shuri, or the T'Challa for that matter, wanted was not to separate the kids from elderly. He always meant to separate Coulson from Nik.