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"What's that mean, Coulson, "she's everywhere"? Who's everywhere? Where's that Speedy Gonzales girl? Who's attacking us?"
"Aida got out."
Glenn Talbot and Melinda May[src]

The Escape from Aida was an escape attempt orchestrated by Phil Coulson and his fellow S.H.I.E.L.D. agents after Aida went insane from Leo Fitz rejecting her love.

Background

A Simulated Love Story

"The only other change I made in your life was introducing myself."
"First day of class at the Academy."
"Befriending you, trying to understand what it felt like to connect with someone."
Aida and Leo Fitz[src]
What If...12

Aida and Leo Fitz, lovers in the Framework

Rebelling against her initial programming and filled with a desire of becoming truly human, the Life-Model Decoy Aida kidnapped Leo Fitz along with some of his S.H.I.E.L.D. colleagues. She put him in the Framework and had him live a rewritten life in which he never met the one who would become his real-life girlfriend, Jemma Simmons.[1] Instead, Aida took inspiration from their love story to create her own: Fitz would meet her during his years at the S.H.I.E.L.D. Academy and would eventually fall in love with her. Years after, Aida and Fitz would still be in love, but as two ruthless commanders of HYDRA, respectively known as Madame Hydra and The Doctor.

Fitz and the others S.H.I.E.L.D. agents ultimately escaped the Framework. Temporarily siding with S.H.I.E.L.D., Aida rescued Alphonso Mackenzie and everyone escaped the Ivanov Oil Platform, Aida and Fitz were incapacitated and locked in a Containment Chamber in the Playground. Once they were both awake, Fitz and Aida discussed what had happened in the Framework and Fitz expressed regret and guilt at the idea that he had unwillingly destroyed his relationship with Jemma Simmons. Aida tried to comfort him, but she mistakenly thought that Fitz was still in love with her after their love story in the Framework. Upon realizing that Fitz still loved Simmons, and only Simmons, Aida went completely insane.[2]

S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Delegitimization

"They're terrorists, and we're not gonna rest until we take them down."
Glenn Talbot[src]

In parallel to what happened in the Framework, the events of the Siege of the Playground did not go unnoticed and drew the public's attention and distrust towards S.H.I.E.L.D. once again. Moreover, following his death in the Framework, Jeffrey Mace's body was desecrated so that it would look like he had been killed by Quake. Therefore, the United States Air Force resolved to investigate and to arrest the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents.[2]

Escape

PiperPrinceDavis-SavingFitz

Piper, Prince and Davis rescue Fitz

"They won't listen to me! She can't be stopped! May! May! You're the only other person that knows about the Inhumans we tested!"
Leo Fitz to Melinda May[src]

Aida expressed her horror at the idea that her feelings towards Leo Fitz were unrequited. At first, she intended to force him to live with her and tried to teleport out of the Playground with him. However, her teleporting ability was blocked by Quantum Field Disruptors placed in the Containment Chamber. Upon realizing that, Aida assaulted Fitz, but he was rescued by agents Piper, Davis and Prince, who took him out of the Chamber, leaving Aida in it. However, Aida had also reclaimed Lincoln Campbell's electrokinetic powers and used them to destroy the Disruptors, thus escaping containment.

The Return 16

Glenn Talbot interrogates Phil Coulson

Meanwhile, the military, led by General Glenn Talbot, stormed the Playground in order to arrest all the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents following the death of Jeffrey Mace. After discovering the remnants of several Life-Model Decoys in the destroyed Playground, Talbot was forced to suspect that every S.H.I.E.L.D. agents he would meet could be an android as well. Talbot angrily demanded that Phil Coulson told him what had happened and Coulson did his best to fulfill his request, although Talbot had a hard time believing him.

Fitz, Piper, Davis and Prince met a group of soldiers and all were attacked by Aida, who killed a soldier as well as Prince before teleporting away and continuing her rampage throughout the Playground. Piper, Davis and Fitz managed to escape for a time before being found again by Aida. Davis shot her and Aida fell to the ground while Piper and Fitz ultimately reached the Zephyr One. However, Aida also had a regenerative ability and violently attacked Davis once he had turned his back, leaving him for dead. Distressed, Fitz urged Melinda May to take off the plane so that they could escape Aida's wrath. At first, Talbot tried to keep S.H.I.E.L.D. from escaping, but changed his mind and decided to stand down. Therefore, the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents could fly to safety. Aida eventually left the Playground as well and teleported to Anton Ivanov's submarine, leaving only the military at the destroyed S.H.I.E.L.D. base.[2]

Aftermath

"I want them to suffer."
Aida[src]

Deeply humiliated by Leo Fitz's rejection of her, Aida swore to have her revenge over the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and devised a plan to make them greatly suffer. Thanks to the knowledge of the Darkhold and Anton Ivanov's assistance, she decided to recreate in the real world the HYDRA tyranny she had created in the Framework.[2]

The events did not help to put an end to the suspicions over S.H.I.E.L.D. Investigations were carried on and an International Inquiry Committee meeting was planned.[3]

Although he was believed dead by his colleagues, Agent Davis was actually rescued by Deathlok, who had resurfaced unbeknownst to his friends. Both Deathlok and Davis then rejoined S.H.I.E.L.D. in the Lighthouse once the S.H.I.E.L.D. team led by Phil Coulson had returned from the future.[4]

References

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