Natasha is a natural at figuring out things as she goes and making detached decisions in her fighting techniques and in how she gets information; she starts out as a ruthless assassin, who finds her “true self” in being part of the Avengers team. When they split up and choose sides in Civil War, she’s unafraid to pick a side and fight for it, then go on the run. She learns how to do things while doing them, whether that includes her fighting techniques or attempting to fix a generator when it suddenly powers down. She often leaps headfirst into danger, putting herself confidently at risk, and noticing opportunities in her environment, such as when she notices the bionic person chasing her isn’t after her, but has come to fetch stolen technology. Natasha doesn’t think much about her sister’s reasons for sending it to her, and to Yelena’s frustration, returns with it to her hideout in Russia, where the two of them duke it out until they call a truce. She then engages in a daring operation to free her “dad” from prison, including starting an avalanche and lowering herself down to defend him on a rope. When she needs to taunt the villain into revealing important information, Natasha takes a bunch of punches to the face and head without concern, then turns around and smashes her own forehead on the desk, to break the sinus link so she can attack him. She’s quick to react, but also often has a single goal in mind. Natasha isn’t overly emotional, but is protective of her sister in the flashback; she also has managed to “keep her heart” according to Melina, who is surprised by this. When the Avengers have split up, Natasha is the one who tries to keep them all together by running a communication hub and keeping tabs on them. She also tracks down and forces Hawkeye to return to his senses once he goes off the rails after losing his family, showing her emotional concern for him in the process. She isn’t super sensitive to others’ emotional needs, but often uses taunts to get them to reveal something to her, a strategic move that she smirks about later (she gets Loki and her previous “owner” Dreykov both to commit this mistake).

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Natasha puts on a bold, courageous front of defensiveness and fearlessness, but underneath it, she’s actually way more protective of her “family” (the Avengers) than she lets on. She stays in a hub, keeping track of them all, and providing them what help they need, a job no one else would want to do, just to keep them all connected. She acts defensively to keep herself and others safe, and is incredibly loyal to the people she cares the most about, even being willing to go up against the other Avengers and fight them off. She also has a soft, humane side that Melina comments on as being remarkable; despite being a ruthless assassin, she has managed to retain her humanity. She is warm, likable, and sometimes emotional under pressure, but is also something of a loner, self-reliant, and says she does “fine on my own.”