The Triskelion is one of the original three official headquarters for S.H.I.E.L.D., alongside the Hub and their New York headquarters. It was located on Theodore Roosevelt Island, on the Potomac River between Washington, D.C. and Virginia. It was severely damaged after an Insight Helicarrier veered into one of its columns during the HYDRA Uprising.
Construction of the Triskelion began some time before 1983. In 1989 in the Triskelion, Hank Pym announced his resignation from S.H.I.E.L.D. before Howard Stark, Peggy Carter, and Mitchell Carson, after he discovered that they had tried to replicate the Pym Particles from the Ant-Man Suit.
Rebecca Stevens was stationed at the Triskelion as a Level 6 agent. However, after being diagnosed and suffering from cancer, Stevens resigned from her duty in 2009 and volunteered to be a patient in Project T.A.H.I.T.I., under the supervision of Phil Coulson. Following her recovery, Stevens was officially reported as having succumbed to her cancer, while in reality her memories were altered and she was given a new identity. J. Streiten, one of the head doctors of Project T.A.H.I.T.I., resigned from the Triskelion due to his strong aversion to Coulson's resurrection.
Meeting Fellow Agents
Leo Fitz's Request
After Skye was fatally shot in the gut twice by Ian Quinn, Leo Fitz and Jemma Simmons were ordered by Phil Coulson to look into Project T.A.H.I.T.I. and to locate the medical team that had resurrected him. Unable to access any information as it was not kept on record, Fitz asked a friend of his who worked at the Triskelion if he would do him a favor and allow him to remotely access all of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s historical administrative data, and his friend agreed. Using the information from the Triskelion's archives, Fitz and Simmons were able to discover the existence of the Guest House.
Nick Fury's Request
Nick Fury summoned Phil Coulson to the Triskelion in order to finally discuss the information regarding Project T.A.H.I.T.I. and his own resurrection. Melinda May informed Coulson about the request; it was decided that they would travel to the facility and set a review board for Grant Ward, who had recently killed Thomas Nash, the main suspect of being the Clairvoyant behind the Centipede Project.
Alexander Pierce, the leader of HYDRA who operated out of the Triskelion, arranged for Project Insight, an operation where three Helicarriers launched from the Triskelion would patrol the world and eliminate potential threats. While S.H.I.E.L.D. approved of the project as the official goal was to eliminate potential global threats and to ensure peace, HYDRA intended to use the Helicarriers to eliminate any who would oppose them. Procuring an algorithm from the digital consciousness of Arnim Zola, HYDRA arranged for the algorithm to be uploaded onto the Lemurian Star, S.H.I.E.L.D.'s aquatic mobile satellite platform. Jasper Sitwell, a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent secretly loyal to HYDRA, was then given orders from the Triskelion to abandon his search for the Clairvoyant and to report to the Lemurian Star so that HYDRA could initiate Project Insight.
Steve Rogers returned to the Triskelion and confronted Nick Fury for Fury's secrets regarding his previous mission to rescue the hostages in the Lemurian Star, as his partner Natasha Romanoff was assigned a secret mission by Fury that compromised Rogers' own mission.
Fury and Rogers discussed the secrets kept in the agency, and how Fury tended to lie about everything. However, according to Fury, the mission at the Lemurian Star went according to what he planned, as he sent Rogers, the greatest soldier in history, to make sure the hostages were rescued unharmed, while Romanoff, an expert hacker, was busy retrieving the data from the ship.
Rogers tried to make Fury know that trust was needed to transform a group of soldiers into an army, but Fury's trust was not something easy to earn, as he lost an eye the last time he trusted someone. Fury revealed that the only reason Romanoff was assigned to the mission at the ship was to do things that Rogers would not be comfortable with, and the reason to kept the secrets was the compartmentalization of the information, a way to protect the secrets of the agency by making sure that nobody knew them all.
To prove his point, Fury invited Rogers to visit the Project Insight bay complex under the Triskelion where a group of Helicarriers were being built. Fury had to override the elevator systems as Rogers had no clearance to know about Project Insight and using his position as director, the elevator started to descend.
Rogers casually talked about how elevators used to play music in the 1940s, and Fury shared a story about his own grandfather, and how he was an elevator operator in an elegant building, earning good tips. However, over the years, his neighborhood got rougher and he started to carry a loaded gun to dissuade any muggers that may try to rob him. Fury said that though his grandfather loved people, he didn't trust them.
As they continued to ride down the elevator and reached the Insight Bays, Rogers noticed the three Helicarriers being constructed under the Triskelion complex. Fury began to explain the purpose of Project Insight, which comprised three Helicarriers synchronized to a network of targeting satellites, that Rogers correctly guessed were launched from the Lemurian Star. The Helicarriers had been improved to maintain a continuous suborbital flight through a set of repulsor engines designed by Tony Stark, due to his experience repairing the turbines of the first Helicarrier.
Fury explained that the main goal of the Helicarriers was to eliminate hostiles easily through their long-range precision guns, targeting enemies via satellite, neutralizing threats against the nation before they even happened. Rogers questioned the morality of punishing an action before committing a crime, but Fury had managed to convince the World Security Council of the need for an advanced method of threat analysis after the alien invasion in New York City.
Rogers was very concerned that Project Insight simply threatened people in the name of protection, and though, as Fury pointed, his generation made some mistakes in the 1940s, everything was done in the name of freedom, something that now was made in the name of fear. As Fury told Rogers that he should start to accept the world in the same way S.H.I.E.L.D. did, Rogers defied Fury before leaving the Triskelion in his motorcycle.
Nick Fury's Suspicions
Inside the Triskelion, Nick Fury secured his office in order to check the files that Black Widow obtained from the Lemurian Star. His computer informed Fury that the satellite launch files he tried to access were locked and encrypted and that his override as director was denied. When he asked the computer whose authority was used to seal the files even from him, the computer told him that his own authority had been used.
Confused and worried, Fury headed to the World Security Council, where Alexander Pierce was holding a virtual meeting with the rest of the World Security Council. The council was discussing the recent hijacking of the Lemurian Star, and S.H.I.E.L.D.'s response of sending Captain America and STRIKE. They were worried about how Georges Batroc was able to board and take a covert S.H.I.E.L.D. vessel. Pierce, tired of the council questioning S.H.I.E.L.D.'s work, recommended that maybe the council itself should need to be overseen.
The meeting was interrupted by Pierce's assistant, who announced Fury's arrival, so Pierce excused himself to the rest of the council and ended the meeting. Pierce greeted Fury, asking him if, despite working in the same building, he only visited because a ship was hijacked. Jokingly, Fury answered that a nuclear war would make him visit Pierce too.
Fury asked about his meeting with the World Security Council, but Pierce dismissed him saying that it was nothing important. Fury revealed the actual reason for his visit, asking Pierce to delay Project Insight as a personal favor. Pierce was surprised, as it was not a simple favor; that petition would usually require a long subcommittee hearing.
Fury revealed his suspicions that something was hidden behind Project Insight, and he needed time to make sure if he was right or wrong; if he was right, everyone would be glad that the Helicarriers were not active. Pierce hesitated a moment before accepting, under the condition that Iron Man visited Pierce's niece at her birthday party, staying with the guests. Fury shook Pierce's hand and thanked him for agreeing with his request.
Captain America vs. S.H.I.E.L.D.
Meeting with Alexander Pierce
Steve Rogers was taken to Alexander Pierce's office at the Triskelion in order to discuss the attacks against Nick Fury that seemingly led to his death. As Rogers arrived, Pierce dismissed Sharon Carter, who was also informing him about the incident at Rogers' apartment. Carter, who had been posing as Rogers' neighbor, greeted him as he approached, but Rogers coldly returned her greeting simply calling her "Neighbor" as he walked towards Pierce.
Pierce greeted Rogers, shaking his hand, who said it was an honor to meet Pierce, though Pierce replied the honor was his, as his father served in the 101st Airborne Division during World War II. Pierce discussed with Rogers an incident that happened in Bogotá, where Fury was able to rescue a group of hostages, including Pierce's daughter, from a group of Colombian National Liberation Army rebels that managed to take the embassy. Fury ignored Pierce's direct order and carried out an unauthorized military operation on foreign soil, but Fury proved to be right, as though Pierce wanted to negotiate, the rebels gave the order to kill the hostages. That particular incident made Pierce promote Fury to Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., a decision he said never had any cause to regret.
Pierce asked Rogers about the reason Fury visited Rogers' apartment, but Rogers said he didn't know. Rogers mentioned that Fury warned him that the apartment was bugged with microphones, though Pierce revealed that Fury omitted the fact that Fury himself gave the order to install them.
Pierce showed a live transmission of Georges Batroc being interrogated, as he had been captured in Algiers. Batroc revealed nothing during the transmission, and Rogers found it hard to believe he was a suspect for Fury's assassination. Pierce revealed that Batroc was hired to attack the Lemurian Star, and the money had been traced to a fictitious account using the name of Fury's old neighbor, so Fury was the principal suspect of hiring Batroc.
Pierce guessed that the prevailing theory about Fury's motivations for the hijacking of the ship was to use it as a cover for the acquisition and sale of classified intelligence and that the sale went sour, leading to Fury's death. Rogers found the accusation hard to believe, and Pierce told him that was precisely the reason for their current conversation. Pierce revealed that it was Fury who asked him to take a seat on the World Security Council, as they were both realists and knew that sometimes diplomacy was useless, and to build a better world meant having to tear the old one down. However, that path meant to gather some enemies. Pierce commented that thinking that those enemies could be happy for Fury's death made him really angry.
Pierce asked Rogers again the first question of their conversation, as he thought that it was not an accident that Rogers was the last one to see Fury alive. Rogers revealed Fury's last words, not to trust anyone, and Pierce wondered if that included Fury himself.
As Rogers was about to exit Pierce's office, Pierce warned him that he was going to find out who murdered Fury, and whoever got in his way would regret it, no matter who he was. Rogers simply replied that he understood, before leaving.
Escape from the Triskelion
Steve Rogers entered one of the elevators at the Triskelion after he left Alexander Pierce's office, in order to head to Operations control. Just as the elevator doors were about to close, Brock Rumlow entered with two STRIKE agents while calling all STRIKE agents to come. Rumlow greeted Rogers as they headed to the Forensics Laboratory, revealing that the evidence response team found some fibers on the roof where Rogers confronted the mercenary that seemingly killed Nick Fury, and asked Rogers if he wanted a tactical team ready. Rogers told him to wait and see what the evidence was. Rogers noticed that one of the STRIKE members had his hand ready to take his weapon.
As the elevator stopped again, more agents entered and began surrounding Rogers while apparently speaking about other issues. To maintain their cover, Rumlow told he was sorry about Fury's death, as it was a big loss for the agency and for some of the agents at a personal level. Feeling something was wrong, Rogers continued to evaluate his surrounding, noticing one of the agents was sweating, and the elevator stopped again as Jack Rollins and two other STRIKE agents entered the elevator. Realizing they were all there to take him down, Rogers asked if there was anyone who wanted to get out before starting a fight.
Rollins took his Taser Rod and attacked Rogers with it, who managed to evade the attack and disarm him before being grabbed by the agents. Some agents tried to strap his wrists with a pair of Magnetic Handcuffs, concealed as the handles of their briefcases. Rogers was able to knock some of the agents, including Rollins, but his right hand was trapped by one of the handcuffs, that adhered itself to the wall of the elevator. Rumlow used his rod to attack Rogers, managing to hit him at his back, but Rogers was not knocked unconscious and defeated the other agent besides Rumlow that was attacking him.
Rogers deflected another of Rumlow's attacks, using the Taser Rod to knock another agent unconscious, and liberated his hand from the wall, knocking all the remaining agents besides Rumlow. Armed with Rollins' and his own Taser Rod, Rumlow told Rogers that the attack was nothing personal. Rumlow was able to hit him with the rods twice more, but Rogers was able to withstand its effects and defeated Rumlow throwing him to the ceiling and then back to the floor. As he was unconscious, Rogers answered Rumlow's final taunt saying that it appeared to be something personal
Jasper Sitwell, who was overseeing the confrontation from the Operations Control room, ordered to mobilize STRIKE units to the 25th floor, and as Rogers opened the door of the elevator, tactical teams were waiting for him and pointing their weapons at him. Rogers was ordered to drop his shield and put his hands in the air, but he used the shield instead to cut the elevator wires, causing the elevator to quickly drop.
As the emergency brakes activated, the elevator stopped between two floors, where more STRIKE agents were waiting for him. The tactical teams told Rogers to surrender as they were opening the door, but Rogers instead escaped jumping through the glass wall in the elevator, falling through the glass ceiling of the building's main atrium below and using his shield to absorb the force of the impact.
Sitwell watched how Rogers quickly recovered and started running off, so he ordered to lock down the entrance bridge of the compound. Rogers managed to exit the garage on his motorcycle before the door was closed. A Quinjet was sent to stop him, shooting at his motorcycle on the bridge.
Rogers managed to evade its shots and disabled the Quinjet throwing his shield into one of its propellers. Rogers continued on his motorcycle towards the Quinjet, using the motorcycle to place himself on top of the Quinjet. Running along the Quinjet, Rogers retrieved his shield from the propeller and threw it into the back jets, sending the craft spinning out of control. Rogers successfully jumped off the Quinjet, finally escaping from the bridge before the craft crashed on its top.
Jasper Sitwell requested a moment of attention from all agents at the Operations Control room at the Triskelion, including Sharon Carter. Sitwell ordered them to leave their current operations and start a manhunt for Captain America. Sitwell gave a series of orders to close every possible escape way for Rogers, to direct all the security cameras in Washington, D.C. to the monitors in that room, and to scan all sources of communications, including phones, computers and PDA's.
Carter asked the reason for such a massive manhunt for Captain America, but it was Alexander Pierce who answered her, saying that Rogers lied to them, he had critical information regarding the death of Nick Fury and refused to share it with them, so he was labeled as a fugitive from S.H.I.E.L.D.
Reactivation of Project Insight
Alexander Pierce held another virtual meeting with the World Security Council, where he defended Nick Fury despite many arguments pointed he could be a traitor. Pierce said that his murder in cold blood would make him be considered a martyr by any reasonable person. The councilmen argued that his hiring of the mercenary Georges Batroc to hijack the Lemurian Star made him a traitor, and that Fury used his friendship with Pierce to make the council agree into the delay of Project Insight, as it may expose his illegal operations.
Pierce, getting tired of the accusations, asked them if they were calling for his resignation, and he defied them to redact his resignation document. The councilmen tabled the discussion for a later time, as they had already decided to reactivate Project Insight immediately.
Captain America, Falcon, and Maria Hill approached the Triskelion from a nearby forest while S.H.I.E.L.D. was preparing to launch the Insight Helicarriers. The three of them infiltrated a communications room in the Triskelion while the technicians were casually chatting. They created a high-pitched squawk in the technician's earpieces, forcing them to remove the devices and open the door in order to check the source of the signal.
As Moore opened the door, he found Rogers, Wilson, and Hill outside, pointing their weapons directly at him. Rogers apologized for entering in that manner, and the technician held his hands up, stepping aside to allow their passage.
Arrival of the World Security Council
Alexander Pierce met the members of the World Security Council as they arrived at the Triskelion, politely asking how their flight was. As Pamela Hawley said that the ride from the airport was not as good as the flight itself, Pierce acknowledged that S.H.I.E.L.D. could not control everything, to which Douglas Rockwell replied that it seemed to include Captain America. Pierce then handed each member of the council a biometric pin to give them unrestricted access to all the facilities inside the Triskelion, and each member wore one of them.
At the World Security Council room, Pierce gave a speech addressing the Council members, recognizing the road to the launch of Project Insight had not been easy, pointing out that even some of the councilmen would have wanted to expel Pierce from the Project. They had finally reached the point of launch, and Pierce stated that the world should be grateful to them. However, as they began celebrating, they were interrupted by a transmission made by Rogers.
Captain America addressed all the loyal S.H.I.E.L.D. agents at the Triskelion from the communications room, revealing the reason he had been deemed a traitor the last few days, and why some agents had been even ordered to hunt him down. Rogers finally exposed that S.H.I.E.L.D. had been taken over by HYDRA. Rogers acknowledged that the number of infiltrators was unknown, but they were in the building and had almost obtained their goal, absolute control. He also revealed they were responsible for the assassination attempt on Nick Fury, and that if they managed to launch the Helicarriers, they would be able to kill anyone that opposed them.
Rogers asked for the collaboration of all loyal agents, knowing that he was asking too much from them, but he encouraged them by saying he was willing to pay the price of freedom, but he would bet he was not the only one. As Rogers finished his speech, Sam Wilson, impressed by Rogers' words, asked him if he had prepared the speech earlier, or it simply improvised it at the moment.
Brock Rumlow ordered his STRIKE team to take a key position inside the Triskelion, while he personally went to the launch room to make sure the Helicarriers were launched despite Captain America's speech. Jack Rollins and other STRIKE agents went to the World Security Council to protect Alexander Pierce, arriving at the time the councilmen were insulting Pierce once his treachery was exposed. Thinking they were S.H.I.E.L.D. agents coming to arrest Pierce, the council members ordered Rollins to arrest him, but Rollins drew his weapon and pointed it at Jakuna Singh instead. Pierce told the council members that he was the one giving orders.
Rumlow and other STRIKE members entered the launch control room, and he ordered Cameron Klein, one of the launch technicians, to bypass the launch sequence and send the Helicarriers immediately. Klein looked at Rumlow nervously and breathed heavily until he replied Rumlow, telling him he wasn't going to launch the Helicarriers under Rogers' orders.
Rumlow pointed his gun at Klein's head, ordering him to move away from his station, but Sharon Carter approached Rumlow, pointing her gun at his head, telling him that as Klein said, those were Captain America's orders. All the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents in the room drew their weapons, pointing them at Rumlow and the rest of the STRIKE operatives. Rumlow told Carter that she picked the wrong side, but he dropped his gun instead of shooting. Rumlow seized the opportunity to grab his knife and cut Carter's arm, disarming her and beginning a gunfight between the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and STRIKE operatives. Carter managed to save Klein's life by kicking his chair while Rumlow was about to shoot him.
Amidst the chaos, Rumlow managed to activate the launch and escape while Carter retrieved a gun and tried to kill him. The three bays located outside the building were opened, and though one of the loyal S.H.I.E.L.D. agents tried to prevent the bays from opening, a STRIKE team killed the technicians in charge of the hanger and gunned him down, allowing the crews in the Helicarriers to take off.
Boarding the Helicarriers
Maria Hill informed Captain America and Falcon that the Helicarriers were taking off, so they ran to board different carriers to change the targeting chips and force the ships to destroy each other. Falcon asked how to differentiate loyal S.H.I.E.L.D. agents from HYDRA operatives, and Rogers assured that HYDRA members would be shooting at him. Rogers jumped to the nearest Helicarrier, while Falcon fled to another.
As soon as Rogers landed, many crew members on the Helicarrier's deck began shooting at him, though he managed to evade their shots and defeat many of them using their own grenades. Meanwhile, Falcon was targeted and shot by the heavy cannons of the Helicarrier he was attempting to board and informed Rogers that he had found the bad guys they had been talking about.
Hill asked about Falcon's status, who informed he was engaging in combat against the Helicarrier he was trying to board, and used his weapons to kill some of the operatives guarding the deck. As he was about to enter, Falcon was engaged by a Quinjet, and he was a force to fly off and avoid getting hit. Meanwhile, Rogers continued to fight the HYDRA agents as he tried to get inside one of the Helicarriers, while Hill informed him that they only had eight minutes before the carriers could shoot their targets. Rogers finally managed to replace the targeting system with the one Nick Fury gave him, and informed Hill that the Alpha Helicarrier had been locked as he escaped.
Falcon had to escape from the Helicarrier as a Quinjet continued to pursue him, and he had to fly near the Helicarrier to escape from a series of heat-seeking missiles launched by the Quinjet. Falcon managed to get the missiles hit the Helicarrier, allowing him to enter it. Falcon informed Hill that he managed to enter, and quickly replaced the targeting system, updating Hill that the Bravo Helicarrier had been locked too. Hill briefed both Falcon and Captain America that only one Helicarrier was remaining.
A group of pilots gathered to give air support to Captain America, but suddenly, the Winter Soldier appeared and destroyed one of the Quinjets about to take off. He then killed all the pilots and crew on the deck and destroyed every Quinjet to make sure they couldn't help Captain America, taking one of the Quinjets for himself to personally confront his enemy. Hill informed Captain America and Falcon that the Helicarrier was at forty-five degrees off the port bow, and noticed two HYDRA operatives breaking into the control room where she was stationed. She killed them as they entered, and informed in the radio that only six minutes were left.
Captain America was trying to escape from the HYDRA operatives who were shooting at him on the Helicarrier, and he was forced to jump over as he called Falcon to catch him in the air. Falcon quickly flew towards Captain America, catching him in the air, and taking him to the Charlie Helicarrier.
Falcon took Rogers, whom he caught in the air while jumping from one of the hijacked Helicarriers to the last remaining carrier, letting him know that he is a lot heavier than you look. Suddenly, the Winter Soldier appeared and attacked Captain America, knocking him over the edge of the ship. Falcon tried to fly off and help Captain America, but the Winter Soldier grabbed one of his wings and threw him back. Falcon shot at the Winter Soldier, but he hid and fired a grappling hook to one of his wings as he was about to take off, breaking the wing and throwing Falcon off the Helicarrier. Falcon discarded his remaining wing and opened his parachute to land on the roof of the Triskelion.
Falcon contacted Captain America to check his status, and Captain America, who managed to hold onto the side of the Helicarrier, informed him that he was still on board. Falcon apologized for not being there, as he had fallen to the ground and, with his EXO-7 Falcon harness destroyed, he could not return to the Helicarrier in time, so Captain America was left alone to hijack the last Helicarrier and defeat the Winter Soldier.
Infiltration at the World Security Council
Alexander Pierce watched through the window how Captain America and Falcon were trying to board the Helicarriers and the ensuing gunfights on board, and he turned to Councilman Jakuna Singh how he would have reacted if Pakistan marched into Mumbai the following, dragging his daughters into a public execution, and he could stop it just pressing a button. Pierce extended the question to the rest of the council members, handing Singh a glass of champagne. Singh answered that he would refuse if the button was Pierce's while tossing the glass aside.
Jack Rollins handed Pierce his handgun, and was about to kill Singh when, suddenly, Pamela Hawley kicked Singh out of the way, disarmed Pierce and knocked down all the STRIKE operatives in the room. As Hawley was pointing a gun at Pierce, she removed a Photostatic Veil, revealing she was Natasha Romanoff, and sarcastically apologized to Pierce for ruining his moment. Chao Yen held Pierce at gunpoint while Romanoff disabled all security protocols to publish all information regarding S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA into the internet. Pierce asked her if she was ready to publish all of her past and let the world see her as she really was, but Romanoff simply returned the question to Pierce.
Pierce was glad to announce that disabling all the encryption was an executive order that required two Clearance Level Alpha members, as he was the only one in the room. However, as they were speaking, a helicopter landed just outside the room, and Nick Fury whom Pierce thought to be dead, appeared and entered the building. Pierce sarcastically asked Fury if he got the flowers he sent for his death, to which Fury replied with a cold look, and said he was glad to see him there, even though Pierce ordered his death. Fury asked why was he made the Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., and Pierce answered he was simply the best and most ruthless person he met.
Fury told Pierce his only motivation was to protect people, but Pierce told him they had common enemies, such as disorder or war, putting two examples, a dirty bomb in Moscow or an EMP in Chicago, of the outcomes that could happen if following the path of diplomacy, something he learned in Bogotá. Pierce said that, as Fury did in Bogotá, doing what had to be done without asking, he could bring order to the lives of seven billion people, only by sacrificing twenty million, and that he had the courage to take it as the next step. Fury replied that he had the courage not to take it.
Fury took Pierce to the retinal scanner, with Romanoff pointing a gun at him, and Pierce jokingly asked if he thought they did not remove Fury's clearance from the system. Fury acknowledged they may have erased his password and retinal scan, but in order to stay ahead of him, he needed to keep both eyes open. Fury removed his eyepatch, revealing his scarred blind eye, using it to pass the retinal scanner while forcing Pierce to pass his. The computer accepted both scans.
Destruction of the Triskelion
At the Triskelion, an emergency evacuation ensued, with all personnel leaving the building. Brock Rumlow fought his way through the building, killing some S.H.I.E.L.D. agents when one of his subordinates informed him that S.H.I.E.L.D. had taken over the World Security Council, and Black Widow was there. Rumlow then proceeded to the Council room, something Maria Hill detected on her monitors, ordering Falcon to intercept him.
Inside the Council room, Romanoff informed that all of S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA's secrets had been published to the internet, but Alexander Pierce seized the opportunity to kill the remaining councilmen, activating the biometric pins he gave them as they entered the building, and forced Romanoff and Nick Fury to lower their weapons, or he would kill Romanoff opening a two inch hole in her sternum with the armed pin. Reluctantly, Fury and Romanoff complied.
Rumlow was informed by the radio of his current location when he was caught by surprise by Wilson. Rumlow managed to knock Wilson down, and prepared himself for fighting him, saying that it was going to hurt, as HYDRA did not take prisoners, it only gives order through the pain. Wilson told him to shut up and they attacked each other. Meanwhile, Pierce asked technicians when the Insight targets would be locked and was subsequently informed that only sixty-five seconds were left before the satellite uplink was complete and the weapons in the Helicarriers were deployed. A minute later, the Helicarriers reached three thousand feet and linked to the satellites, deploying Arnim Zola's algorithm to assign the targets.
However, Rogers managed to replace the last remaining chip, overriding the system and locking it. He informed him to the radio that the Charlie Helicarrier had been locked, and the technicians wondered where the targets went. Hill quickly set the Helicarriers as the targets for each other, and she reluctantly opened fire as Captain America ordered her to do it before he could escape the Helicarrier. Pierce regretted the destruction of the Helicarriers, and Romanoff jokingly asked if he still doubted Rogers' chances. Pierce took Romanoff as a hostage in order to escape the building.
As Pierce was leaving, Fury revealed that there was a time when he would have taken a bullet for Pierce, and Pierce told him that he already did, and would do it again. Romanoff seized the opportunity to use a Taser Disk on herself and disable the pin Pierce was using as leverage. Pierce checked his phone to activate Romanoff's pin but it announced that its system was rebooting. Fury grabbed a weapon and shot Pierce twice. As Pierce died, he quickly went to check Romanoff's status, who was lying unconscious on the ground, and she opened her eyes, complaining that the Taser Disks she often used against her enemies actually sting a lot.
The Helicarriers continued to destroy each other. Helicarriers IN-02 and IN-03 crashed to the Potomac and destroyed the bays where they had been built, while IN-01 traveled in a poetic crash course to the Triskelion itself. Wilson and Rumlow still fought in the building, and though Rumlow had gained an upper hand, Wilson noticed the falling Helicarrier and ran. Rumlow became aware of this danger from Wilson's reaction but was unable to escape as he got crushed by falling debris as the carrier finally collided with the building.
Wilson contacted Romanoff to inform her of his location so she could extract him with her and Fury's helicopter. Unable to reach a safe position out of the way of the crumbling building, he was forced to jump through a window. Fury quickly maneuvered the helicopter to enable Wilson to fall into it. Safely inside, Wilson complained that he had already informed them that he was on the 41st floor, to which Fury quipped that the floor numbers were not written on the outside of the building. Having obtained massive structural failure, the Triskelion partially collapsed behind the escaping helicopter.
Clearing the Wreckage
The New S.H.I.E.L.D.
In the Framework, HYDRA gained control over the entire world and labeled S.H.I.E.L.D. as a terrorist organization. While taking over, HYDRA settled its headquarters in the Triskelion. Thus, the Triskelion became the main base of operations for HYDRA, where numerous operatives worked and prisoners were taken, interrogated and experimented on. HYDRA's top officers, including Madame Hydra, The Doctor, Melinda May and Alistair Fitz all worked at the Triskelion, as well as other agents like Skye or Grant Ward.
Many Inhumans captured by HYDRA were notably detained in the Triskelion. There, the ruthless officer known as The Doctor performed experiments in order to assess their powers without triggering Terrigenesis. These experiments were torturous and often, if not invariably, fatal, and Inhumans would become terrified at the prospect of being transferred to The Doctor's custody. Lincoln Campbell, Gordon and Vijay Nadeer were among The Doctor's victims.
Alphonso Mackenzie and his daughter Hope were also brought to the Triskelion for interrogation. Melinda May forced Mackenzie to cooperate with HYDRA in the arrest of S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Daisy Johnson, who was imprisoned in the Triskelion's cells, where she would be tortured both physically and mentally by the Doctor and Madame Hydra.
Holden Radcliffe was also imprisoned in the Triskelion, in the cell adjacent to Johnson's, following his arrest. He and Johnson communicated through the vents, enabling Johnson to know the coordinates of a backdoor for exiting the Framework.
Melinda May eventually turned on HYDRA after she discovered they were indoctrinating children in the HYDRA Enlightenment Cultivation Center. She went to Daisy Johnson's cell and shattered a Terrigen Crystal, triggering Johnson's Terrigenesis. May and Johnson then made their way through the Triskelion, killing several HYDRA operatives in the process. Madame Hydra tried to stop them, but Johnson used her powers to throw her through a window, making her fall from a high floor of the Triskelion.
Madame Hydra survived the fall but was severely wounded, forcing her to remain in bed in her Triskelion apartments. Sunil Bakshi came to the Triskelion following the escape and was ordered by The Doctor to disclose the identity of the fugitives and to call for a manhunt.
Alistair Fitz tried to interrogate Holden Radcliffe to know what he and Johnson had been discussing, but Radcliffe refused to disclose any information. Nonetheless, Fitz discovered that they had been communicating through the vents in their cells. Later, The Doctor also visited Radcliffe in his cell and offered him a way to achieve his dream of immortality through the Project Looking Glass he was working on in exchange for Radcliffe's cooperation.
Completion of Project Looking Glass
While his operatives tracked down the fugitives, The Doctor kept working on the Project Looking Glass which had the purpose of creating a full living body for Aida in the real world. The Doctor eventually completed the project and informed Madame Hydra of his success while she was resting in her apartments after her fall.
The Doctor then left the Triskelion with Holden Radcliffe to find the S.H.I.E.L.D. fugitives and kill them once and for all. While he was away, Madame Hydra ordered the Project Looking Glass equipment to be brought to her apartments so that she could initiate the synthesis of her new body.
With HYDRA facing several defeats, S.H.I.E.L.D. was able to openly call for a rebellion against the organization. Rebels soon assaulted the Triskelion while Yo-Yo Rodriguez, who had plugged herself to the Framework to rescue Alphonso Mackenzie, woke up in the Framework only to found herself strapped to a chair in the Triskelion's labs. She was rescued by Holden Radcliffe, who took her to the Playground while the Triskelion was slowly being deleted.
History Altered by Chronicoms
In an alternate 1983, the Triskelion was constructed before its original construction. S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and Academy students, such as Roxy Glass, hoped they would be assigned. After Sibyl successfully hacked into the Lighthouse database and retrieved the Triskelion's location, she sent the coordinates to the Hunters onboard the Chronicom Destroyer Ships, who launched an orbital strike and destroyed the Triskelion and all S.H.I.E.L.D. facilities.
Design and Capabilities
The Triskelion was built along the Potomac River on Theodore Roosevelt Island as an enormous complex that occupied almost all of the island. Its central structure was composed of three tall, thin, columnar buildings supporting a shared circular top floor. It also contained three hidden Helicarrier bays below the Potomac that were used for Project Insight.
The Triskelion contained many control rooms including the one used to control Project Insight and hunt down Captain America. Both on and outside of the structure itself, helipads and Quinjet launch bays had been built on the Island. After completion, the Triskelion served as the primary headquarters of S.H.I.E.L.D. and housed many of its agents and operations.
There was the main atrium as well as many operating rooms. It contained Director Nick Fury's office as well the chambers of the World Security Council, which included Alexander Pierce's office. Presumably, several other high ranking members had offices in the building. The Triskelion was a high-security facility, and certain parts were only accessible to agents with the proper Clearance Level.
In the Framework, the main atrium featured a black statue representing the skull-headed octopus symbol of HYDRA, the corridors of the building featured a memorial for the victims of the Cambridge Incident, and the different floors served many roles:
- Many HYDRA operatives, including Grant Ward and Skye, worked in an open-space with individual boxes where each operative had their own computer. The place also featured briefing rooms.
- The Triskelion hosted several labs in which The Doctor worked on the Project Looking Glass as well as used sophisticated machines to torture Inhumans and assess their powers. In another lab, scientists like Kenneth Turgeon created the HYDRA Super-Serum and stored some Terrigen Crystals.
- A landing ground enabled Quinjets and the Zephyr One to take off and land in the Triskelion.
- Several cells and interrogation rooms were used to detain subversives captured by HYDRA like Vijay Nadeer, Daisy Johnson or Holden Radcliffe.
- At the top of the Triskelion were Madame Hydra's private apartments.
|Appearances for The Triskelion|
In chronological order:
- In the Ultimate Universe, the Triskelion was the headquarters of S.H.I.E.L.D. and later of the Ultimate Avengers, and it was located in the Upper Bay of New York City.
Behind the Scenes
- The design of the Triskelion was in part influenced by Brutalist and Nazi architecture styles.
- Nate Moore says "The Triskelion is sort of Pentagon-meets-a-modern-building, so it's not as low-hanging and dated as the Pentagon structure. It's taller than any building in D.C. We break the D.C. rules about height limits, so the Triskelion lords over the rest of the skyline. It is something that is of the city. And in the stonework, texturally, it feels like it's part of the Capitol and Smithsonian and all those structures-but it's newer, a little slicker, and a little more modern."
- The Triskelion has been missing in shots featuring the DC skyline in the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode Ragtag, Spider-Man: Homecoming (where it was also to appear in a scene that was deleted from the film), and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier episode Truth.
- Early drafts of Avengers: Endgame had the Avengers going to Triskelion during the Time Heist to get the Tesseract whereas one of them was to get into a car and drive to Doctor Strange's house.
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 2.17: Melinda
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 2.07: The Writing on the Wall
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 1.14: T.A.H.I.T.I.
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 2.16: Afterlife
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 1.16: End of the Beginning
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- Spider-Man: Homecoming
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 7.13: What We're Fighting For
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.16: What If...
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.17: Identity and Change
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.18: No Regrets
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.19: All the Madame's Men
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.20: Farewell, Cruel World!
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.21: The Return
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 4.22: World's End
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 7.10: Stolen
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: 7.11: Brand New Day
- The Art of Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- ‘Avengers: Endgame’: The Screenwriters Answer Every Question You Might Have