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comment_fic 988: Cap2

Title: to lie as all who love have lied
Fandom: Marvel movies
Disclaimer: the narrator’s mine. no one else is. Title from Anne Sexton
Warnings: spoilers through Cap2; talk of PTSD, violence
Pairings: Steve/OFC; implied Steve/Bucky
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 1400
Point of view: third
Prompt: any, any/any, finding out your lover would protect a monster if he just loved it enough



Tate's known the whole time that Steve Reynolds is Steve Rogers is Captain America. It was kinda obvious after the whole alien invasion thing, even though she'd been flirting with him the entire week leading up to that. And while no official announcement was released after the invaders were beaten back, Captain America's face was out there.

But Steve Reynolds carries himself differently than Captain America. He goes on business trips a lot and comes back a little tired but not injured as far as Tate can tell.

They're not that serious, her and Steve Reynolds. They can't be since he's never told her he's Steve Rogers, Captain America. Fuck, she had such a crush on him as a girl. But she's a woman now, working her way through grad school for architecture, and they talk about art, a lot, about sketching and various mediums and which greats are just bullshit as opposed to actually deserving the title.

It's fun, what they have.

But the helicarriers just sank into the river, and DC is on fire, and everyone saw Captain America get arrested (Steve Rogers, he was dressed like Steve Rogers, where was his suit, where was his team?) and some guy with a metal arm, and it's all just --

She goes through the information released onto the internet as best she can, but not a lot makes sense. Steve doesn't answer her texts or her increasingly frantic calls.

Finally, she just decides to drive to DC; work's cancelled anyway, and so is school for the week. Everything's chaos. She knows Steve Reynolds' address, and while it might not be where Steve Rogers actually lives, it'll do in a pinch.

Tate knocks on the door, first. There’s no answer. She glances back down at the hall, biting her lip. It’s ridiculous, what she’s thinking – but she’s already here. She’s come this far. And Monica had taken the time to teach her…

She’ll never tell anyone, but Tate Edison picks the lock on the door to Captain America’s apartment. She’s a little proud of it for about three seconds – and then there’s a metal hand clamped around her throat, a metal arm pinning her to the wall, and the most terrifying person she’s ever seen glaring at her.

The guy with the metal arm who tore up DC is in Steve’s apartment.

“Who are you?” he asks, and his voice is entirely too soft for the pure strength in his body. The hand loosens but the arm remains firm.

She say, “T—Tate. I’m here to make sure Steve’s okay. Oh, fuck, please don’t kill me.”

There is no expression on his face but he unclamps his fingers, lowers his arm. She sags back against the wall. She doesn’t go for her phone or move at all, watching him back away, hands at his side. His clothes look like he pulled them out of a dumpster, his hair is utterly disgusting, but he moves so silently it’s absolutely mind-numbingly terrifying, and his gaze never leaves her. There’s nothing in that gaze, like no one’s home in his head, but the way he fought –

She doesn’t beg. He’ll kill her or he won’t.

Tate blinks and he’s just gone. Out the window, she assumes, when she can think through the fear and sheer relief that she’s alive.

She slides down the wall, wrapping her arms around her knees, and just breathes.

.

She wakes up to a black guy kneeling out of reach, saying, “Ma’am? Ma’am, hey, can you wake up please?”

Tate jerks to the side, eyes going past him to see if the metal-armed guy is back, and she heaves a sigh of relief that he’s not.

“I’m not gonna hurt you,” the black guy says, holding his hands up. “I am gonna ask why you’re in Steve’s apartment, though.”

“I, I saw the news,” she says. “I couldn’t make heads or tails of the internet stuff, but I saw that Steve got hurt, and he wasn’t answering his phone, and I knew this address, and I broke in, and that, that crazy guy with the metal arm, oh, fuck, I can’t believe I’m alive.” She stops to breathe.

The guy – and he was on the news, too, guns pointed t him just like they were pointed at Steve – says, “The soldier was here?” and begins looking around.

She nods, trying to breathe slowly and deeply.

“Shit,” the guy says. “Okay, if you’re willing to trust me, I can take you to Steve. He’s been in the hospital, just woke up yesterday. Can you trust me?”

Tate nods again. “I saw you – you were on Steve’s side.”

“Yeah.” He smiles, rising to his feet and holding out a hand to help her up. “I’ll always be on Steve’s side. He’s a good guy.”

“The best,” Tate says, taking his hand.

.

Sam Wilson brings her to Steve’s hospital room. Natasha Romanoff, the Black Widow, who was also all over the news (and still is) pats Steve on the shoulder and then hip-checks Sam as she leaves, with a brief smile for Tate.

“Tate!” Steve says, trying to smile at her. It pulls at the stitches in his cheek and he winces.

“Oh, fuck,” she says, looking him over. “Shit.”

“I’ll give y’all a moment,” Sam says. “But, Steve -- he was in your apartment.”

She shudders at the reminder but Steve – in a few years, she’ll understand. By that point, the whole world will understand. But right now, looking at Steve who only survived because of a government experiment when literally every other person would’ve died, right now, Tate watches Steve’s entire body surge, his eyes light up, and there’s no anger at all anywhere, no fear, nothing to show the guy with the metal arm is a threat, is probably the person who put him in this bed, three days after he should’ve died.

It’s been a week since the helicarriers. If Steve still looks like this -- how bad was it?

“Thanks, Sam,” Steve says. Then, “Tate, I’m sorry – I guess you were tryin’ to get a hold of me?” He chuckles a little. “My phone got destroyed.”

“I broke into your apartment,” she confesses, sitting in the chair beside the bed. She reaches for his hand, and he reaches for hers, and she says, “This really scary guy was there.” She shudders again, but Steve…

Steve focuses on her face, and practically begs, “Can you tell me?”

So she does, even though she almost has another panic attack. Steve talks her through it, apologizing, and then she says, “I’ve known the whole time you weren’t Steve Reynolds.”

He nods. “I figured you did. I just wanted something… outside of all this.” He uses his free hand to wave at the hospital room.

Tate takes a deep breath. “I can date Steve Reynolds,” she says. “And I can crush on Steve Rogers. But I can’t…” She shakes her head.

Steve gently squeezes her hand. “I understand,” he says, sounding so warm and kind it brings tears to her eyes. “I’m not gonna be around for awhile, anyway. There’s something I’ve gotta do.”

She stands, presses a kiss to his forehead, and says, “You’re amazing, Steve. And it’s been so much fun.”

“We can still be friends,” he says. “I don’t wanna give up our art talks if I don’t have to.”

“Okay,” she says. “Text me, when you get a new phone.”

He chuckles a little and she turns to leave. A part of her waits for him to call her back, but he doesn’t.

Sam and the Black Widow are huddled in close in the hall. Sam separates to say, “One of us can give you ride back to your car.”

“Thanks,” she says, wrapping her arms around her middle. “I don’t care which.”

.

Steve never gives a single interview about what happened on the helicarriers. He does talk about Hydra, though, and Project Insight. Journalists and government leaders ask about the Winter Soldier, barely a mention in the leaked information. A ghost.

Tate tries to avoid everything about the Winter Soldier because she still sees his eyes, feels his hand around her throat. He didn’t kill her. She doesn’t know why.

Every time they ask about the Winter Soldier, Steve looks at the camera and he says, “Come home.”

It’s years before anyone understands why.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
maldeluxx
Nov. 17th, 2014 01:34 pm (UTC)
*nods* I can see it being quite scary, if you don't know much beyond the surface. One can definitely see that Steve misses Bucky *awww* And I think Bucky does too, on some level. A nice glimpse of a story :) <3
tigriswolf
Nov. 17th, 2014 05:06 pm (UTC)

Thank you for reading!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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tigriswolf
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