draws this scenario 8 million more times
aah yes an excuse for more Anthony Mackie on my blog, thank you ♥
colour palette challenge
"Gee, must be a swell view you get every morning, huh, Buck?"
"Y—eah. Ain’t that an understatement."
In the shadow of a shipyard, sharing lunch. (Protip, Steve: he doesn’t mean the view from the loading dock.)
#03 for ninemoons42 (hugs!)
"Look, I know my ideas will never make the movies, so I can just tell you all of them, because it will never be a spoiler! Well, I know that in the comic, Gamora and Iron Man […] they’ve hooked up!” (X)
Bucky isn’t sleeping.
He lies awake at night, arms at his sides and body stretched cold across his side of the mattress, but his eyes stay fixed open, locked on the lights that play intermittently off of the ceiling. Steve knows it isn’t an effect of the serum: the only medical evaluation they’d been able to get Bucky into, still unconscious and strapped to a gurney, had shown the version of Erskine’s formula running through his body was bastardized, painful, different from the original. Not as strong, and even Steve needed his own five hours. He says nothing the first two nights, not wanting to tread into unwanted territory; the third night, Bucky’s breathing stops for a moment too long and Steve shoots up, looking at his purpled eyes in the barely-there light of the street.
“You need to sleep, Buck. This is killing you.”
Bucky shakes his head, pushes himself upright with visible effort. “Can’t—can’t sleep. It compromises the mission. I’ll be put—when I’ve satisfied the envoy I’ll be decommissioned. Sleep.”
Steve looks him and, for a moment, has no idea what to do. “There is no mission, Bucky.” He reaches out a careful hand, palm-up. Bucky eyes it warily, but doesn’t move. “It’s 2014. You’re in Brooklyn. You stay with me.”
Bucky swallows. “You’re not real.” His eyes are wide and glassy, breath coming in hiccuping gasps. “You’re dead. They—they told me… I saw the papers—”
Steve tries to think of Sam’s advice, but everything he can come up with is garbled, nerves and fear wracking his brain. He’s walking a razor’s edge of panic, unsure and unqualified to do anything but carefully touch Bucky’s flesh and bone shoulder, hoping contact will bring him down. Instead he jolts, pushing himself to the end of the bed.
“They showed me the paper. They said you were dead.”
“I was gone, Buck. I was gone a long time. But I’m here now. We’re in New York. You’re safe. I need you to believe me, even if it doesn’t seem like it now.”
Bucky shakes his head, looking around the dark room like he’s just noticing his surroundings. “I don’t…this can’t—this isn’t real. You’re not real. They wouldn’t—I’ve tried, they find me. They always find me. If this was real they’d.” He brings his knees to his chest, covers his face with his hands. “Fuck. Steve, Steve…I miss you so much.”
It hits him like a sucker punch, the helpless fear in Bucky’s voice and not being able to do anything to fix it. Steve brings his own hands up and pulls Bucky’s hands away from his face, careful, watching the prosthesis for sudden, violent movements. When Bucky complies, Steve squeezes scarred fingers; he gets a desperate gasp of breath in return, but his hands squeeze back.
“I’m right here, Buck.”
Recognition sparks in Bucky’s eyes, and he swears, pulling away from Steve and back against the foot board. “Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck Steve what the hell were you doing?”
There’s a shock down Steve’s spine when he realizes Bucky has no memory of what just happened; he tenses his jaw and stays as calm as he can. “Bucky, what’s going on, here? You haven’t slept in almost a week.” He sits down on the edge of the mattress, reaches out to Brush Bucky’s hair behind his ear. His skin is cold and clammy and he shivers when he’s touched. “If you’re having nightmares—”
Bucky grits his teeth. “I don’t sleep.” His eyes are glassy in the watery light filtering in through the curtains. He curls his arms around himself, protective.
Steve frowns. ”Okay. Okay. I’m not gonna make you do anything you don’t want to do. Just stay with me a while longer, alright?” Because Steve knows the rest of this, and it ends with Bucky beating his own knuckles bloody against the punching bag downstairs. He’s gone through four, in the week and a half he’s been in the tower, and it’s not quite Steve’s record, but it’s too many, already.
Bucky’s eyes dart, looking Steve up and down, but he lets himself be handled, pulled down against Steve’s chest and back under the covers. He’s deathly quiet, muscles tense but Steve rubs flat palms across his spine anyway, kisses the top of his head and hums nonsense, a song even he only half-remembers, lilting through a window that wouldn’t close on humid days.
Despite Bucky’s assertions, Steve does eventually feel his breathing go steady, warm against his neck, the rubbery shudder of held-in tears giving way to fitful sleep.
He runs his palm along Bucky’s back and watches the sun come up through the curtains.