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Title: Wipe your hand across your mouth, and laugh
Fandom: Avengers movieverse
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from TS Eliot
Warnings: talk of depression, violence, death, torture, brainwashing
Pairings: Steve/Bucky
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 390
Point of view: third
Prompt: any. any&any (or any/any). Milkvetch Your presence softens my pains


None of them realize the ghost has been haunting Steve until they have the ghost-made-flesh standing beside him. None of them realize that Steve has been drowning silently since the defrost until he takes a deep breath and surges out of the shallows, all because of the metal hand that drags him to shore.

None of them realize who Steve Rogers actually is until they see the way he smiles at Bucky Barnes.

.

Steve Rogers, it turns out, is a little shit. Also, just a bit terrifying.

History left a lot of things out, Clint realizes, and Stark just cackles through the disbelief.

.

Steve Rogers spends two years of his life angry and depressed, wearing Captain America like a mask. No one notices.

Steve Rogers spends three months of his life following a ghost on a world tour of death and destruction, and he hasn't felt so alive since that first beating in an alleyway, when a kid pulled the three bigger boys off him and said, "This don't look like a fair fight."

.

Steve Rogers actually laughs and smiles and grins. It's amazing.

"I hadn't realized it was that bad," Tasha confesses to Clint while Barnes teases Cap about something. "I mean, I knew it was bad, but the severity..." She shakes her head. "He's a better liar than I gave him credit for."

.

Steve Rogers spent seventy years asleep and the world moved on without him. A legend built on his name; a myth formed around him.

When he woke, he was shoved right back into a war with nothing but his name and a uniform that signified whatever those in power wanted.

No one realized that he hadn’t grieved in those seventy years, or moved on. He slept. He should never have awoken.

.

But he did wake. And somehow, though Steve has no idea what he did for such a precious gift, Bucky’s here, too.

Bucky’s alive and Steve can breathe again.

.

“Holy fuck, why wasn’t this in the history books?” Clint laughs, watching from a safe distance as Cap and Barnes have a goddamned prank war in Stark’s tower.

“Would you have believed it?” Banner asks.

“Nope.” Clint ducks the water balloon as Banner makes a strategic retreat, and across the room, Cap’s doubled over laughing and Barnes is haloed in sunlight, smiling.




Title: He is dust and I too shall die
Fandom: Avengers movieverse
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from Gilgamesh
Warnings: character death, violence, torture
Pairings: implied Steve/Bucky
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 830
Point of view: third
Prompt: any, any, Black Mulberry Tree (I shall not survive you)


"Steve, we should slow down," Sam says. "What good do we do Barnes if we die from exhaustion or get caught 'cause we're too tired to notice the trap?"

“And what happens if he dies because no one’s watchin’ his back?” Steve demands in turn.

.

And then, of course, they find Barnes’ body. He lost too much blood, as best Sam can determine. Lost too much too fast to replace, and his serum wasn’t as good as Steve’s.

He’s surrounded by bodies, and he looks so fucking young.

“Bucky,” Steve says. “Bucky, wake up.” He kneels down in the pool of dried blood; it’s been at least three days. “C’mon, Buck.” Steve reaches out to shake him. “Bucky, wake up.”

Oh, fuck, Sam thinks, watching Steve’s mind and heart break at the exact same moment.

.

Steve Rogers has gone on multiple suicide missions for Bucky Barnes and (somehow) survived every one of them.

Steve Rogers has been told Bucky Barnes died multiple times and proven it wrong.

There is no world Steve Rogers wants to live in if Bucky Barnes isn’t there, too.

.

Hydra is the reason Bucky Barnes died three times.

Steve buries Bucky beneath a full moon and tells Sam, “You should go home.”

“I ain’t leavin’ you out here alone, Steve,” Sam says, shaking his head. “Not a chance in hell.”

“It is hell,” Steve says, patting the newly-turned earth.

.

There is no world without Bucky Barnes. Steve followed orders once and it let Hydra get their hands on Bucky for the second time. It let them murder him and put an obedient weapon into his body.

When Natasha and Fury and Stark and anyone at all calls, Steve doesn’t pick up. Sam does, and he has muttered conversation Steve hears but ignores.

This isn’t a suicide mission. Steve doesn’t plan on dying anytime soon. Not while any piece of Hydra is still somewhere in the world.

.

“Steve,” Sam says cautiously. “Steve, look at me.”

He doesn’t recognize Steve anymore. Steve’s crusade – civilians have gotten caught up in, non-combatants, people who haven’t been Hydra in fifty years have been executed in their beds.

“Steve, I can’t be a part of this any longer.” Fury’s told Sam to bring Steve in, that he needs to be controlled, contained. They’ve made the news in every country in the world because Steve has rooted Hydra out everywhere.

Sam won’t bring him in because he understands but he can’t –

“Steve, I’m going home,” he says. It’s been a year since Steve buried Barnes. Sam had hoped… but his friend died with Barnes and he sees that now.

“Be happy, Sam,” Steve says, glancing at him for just a moment before looking back down at the bloodstained file eighteen civilians died for Steve to get.

.

The new World Security Council tries to send the Avengers after the rogue Captain America. All of them refuse.

.

It starts with Hydra. But Hydra’s got tendrils everywhere. He follows the threads, severing and burning, and letting the bodies lay where they fall.

The war will never be over. And he knows he’ll never see Bucky again because Bucky has to be in Heaven. He was too good not to make it there. And Steve’s sins are immeasurable now, rivers of blood flowing from his hands that he doesn't feel an ounce of regret for –

They’ve been dead since Bucky bled out alone. He just needed time to find them.

Steve swings the shield onto his back, holsters his gun, and kneels down next to one of AIM’s scientists. “Hi,” he says. “I’m Steve Rogers.”

“Please don’t kill me,” she cries. She’s the only other person alive in the room.

“I’m going to kill you,” he says. “But it’s up to you how painless it is.”

.

There is no world worth living in if Bucky’s not there. And all Steve can do is kill anyone who might’ve ever caused Bucky harm.

He knows there’s no end to this. It’s his punishment for letting Bucky fall alone.

.

Bucky Barnes’ name is on eighteen different memorials. The Winter Soldier is never identified, though it is noted that he did not survive the battle to stop Project Insight’s completion.

In every country in the world, the public is informed that Steve Rogers is a fugitive and that if he is seen, do not approach. Contact the authorities.

“This is a goddamned shitshow,” Nick mutters, head in his hands. “Fuck.”

Things would’ve been better if Barnes had just died in the mountains. They could’ve dealt with a depressed and grieving Captain America – they had been dealing with it. But a fucking omnicidal Captain America who believes everyone should be punished for Barnes’ death… fuck, no one saw that coming.

“Do we know where he is now?” he asks Coulson.

“No,” Coulson sighs. “He was last sighted in Mumbai; corroboration came when a factory caught fire. Thirteen casualties.”

“Shit,” Nick mutters. Why couldn’t Barnes have just died in the mountains?



Title: twenty words for darkness but none at all for light
Fandom: Avengers movieverse
Disclaimer: not my characters; title from Matilyn Singer
Warnings: talk of violence/death/brainwashing/torture
Pairings: none
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 425
Point of view: third
Prompt: any. any. Belvedere, I declare war against you


He turns away from the display with his face and goes to the one labeled "Howling Commandos." If Steve Rogers Captain America was his previous handler, then these men were his team. He reads and rereads the information provided before moving on to the next display.

He memorizes everything for later review and returns to the display on Barnes. Barnes, who Steve Rogers Captain America called friend and dropped his only weapon for. Barnes whose display calls him a hero.

He has no memory of Barnes, or Steve Rogers Captain America, or the Howling Commandos. He has no memory that isn't pain and fear and rage -- he knows their names, now, the feelings inside. He even knows the word feeling, emotion. He hasn’t been wiped in eight days, hasn’t been stored for ten.

His body aches and he isn’t sure his head will ever stop hurting, inside. And he is terrified that his ex-masters will come for him, that the government will contain him somewhere, that it will be decided for a bullet to put him down.

But above the pain and above the fear… he is angry.

He does not remember what was stolen, but he knows that it was. And he knows that all those who stole it are long dead. But their heirs are still alive. Their protégés. Their successors. His continued existence is a testament to their legacy.

He glances at Steve Rogers Captain America’s face, towering on the wall. He does not remember being Captain America’s weapon, much less friend… but he does remember Captain America pulling off his helmet, dropping his shield, not raising a hand in his own defense.

He pulled Captain America out of the water.

He nods to the image of Steve Rogers’ face and departs the museum as silently as he arrived. His mission, chosen and ordered by himself, is to eradicate Hydra wherever it hides.

He was a soldier, once. Codename: Winter Soldier after that, though he does not remember ever being called anything but asset. (How much should he trust memories? They can be planted or pruned.)

He was a soldier. Now he is a ghost. And he will haunt all those who maintained his cage, who beat and burnt and broke him.

He is not Bucky Barnes. He is not Captain America’s friend or weapon. He is simply the ghost of that man.

He steps into the sunlight, wishing he could tilt his face into the warmth but he must mask his presence from the cameras recording everywhere.

He walks away.



Title: the caged bird sings of freedom
Fandom: the backstory for an original character in a Marvel movie fic
Disclaimer: everyone’s mine; title from Maya Angelou
Warnings: gender identity issues
Pairings: pre-OC/OC
Wordcount:
Point of view: third
Prompt: Any, any, your boldness stands alone among the wreck (Mumford & Sons, "Little Lion Man"
Note: in this ‘verse

Freddie's pretty sure he falls in love in the tenth grade, when the little white boy is introduced as Ron and refuses to look anyone in the eye. Freddie's always been popular and he's got more friends than he knows what to do with -- but there's something about Ron that he can't look away from.

.

Ron's quiet. Shy, Freddie thinks, but he also -- he flinches, sometimes, when people lean in, when their hands get too close. Just sometimes, though. If he's not expecting it, Freddie determines.

He doesn't know what to do with the information, so he tells his nana, and Nana says, "Well, bring the boy by. Let him know he's not alone. Not much we can do for now."

.

So Freddie starts talking to Ron. The boys don't understand but Freddie still makes it to practice so they don't care. He eats lunch with Ron. Offers to help him with a geometry problem during study hall, one day, when he notices Ron's stuck.

Invites him over to watch movies. Turns out, Ron's favorite actor is Sam Wilson, so Freddie gets his entire filmography from Netflix and puts them on.

It's not till they're juniors, though, not till Freddie tags along to the LGTBQ meeting and signs up, not till he gets himself suspended for beating Eli into the ground for the filth he spewed at Ron that Ron finally says, "I'm not a boy. I'm not -- I was born into the wrong body."

Freddie doesn't know what to say, so he just says, "Thank you for telling me," and offers Ron a box of tissues and awkward pats on the back.

He goes researching. He's not gonna let this scare him off if Ron's obsession with old youtube videos about the Crocodile Hunter didn't.

On Saturday, he knocks on Ron's front door and Ron's mom lets him in. "Go on up," she tells him, so he does.

He had a whole speech planned. Instead he asks, "Is there a name you'd prefer to Ron?"

She nods and murmurs, "Radha."

Radha has Ron's sad brown eyes, Ron's messy black hair, Ron's pale skin. She holds herself hunched in like Ron, afraid to take up too much space.

Freddie says, "It's good to meet you, Radha," and sees Radha smile in a way Ron never has.



Title: firstborn
Fandom: Highlander
Disclaimer: not my characters
Warnings: post-apocalyptic
Pairings: none
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 385
Point of view: third
Prompt: Highlander, any/any, admitting to being Immortal

The end of the world happens on a Sunday. Methos is unsurprised.

.

There are survivors, of course, because there always are. Mammals survived the dinosaurs and then the earth warming; of course pockets of humanity survive the aliens.

.

Aliens, he thinks. The things you live to see.

.

After, in the shaky peace, the aliens and humanity’s spokesperson agree to share the world. With half of all life dead, there is plenty of room.

Share? he thinks, watching from the back of the crowd. Oh, no, that will not do.

.

Most immortals survived the initial attack and the invasion, after. Some did not because being exploded tends to separate the head from the neck.

Methos does not like to fight. He prefers to blend, to run, to arrange things so others fight for him (often, they do not realize). No, he doesn’t like to fight.

That doesn’t mean he can’t.

.

Many survivors are tired and just want to move on with what’s left of their lives.

But there are many who want vengeance.

.

“And why should we follow you?” a woman asks. What’s left of the population of Europe moved inland, meeting up with what’s left of Asia. There are others, throughout the world. There are others, but here, he has a group of 18000.

The time of science and reason is over; the age of god-kings has come again. Methos takes out a knife older than any nation and slices his palm wide open, holding it up for all to see.

“Because this world is mine,” he says.

.

He remembers the endless ice and the giants that walked.

He remembers the woman called Isis, whose cult stretched from sea to sea.

He remembers the Nazarene and how words changed the world.

Once, gods were commonplace.

.

His far-flung people stream in, as he had known they would. A thousand immortals, 18000 humans, and invaders from the stars.

“Do you really think we can do this?” a little girl asks, a kitten cradled in her arms.

He smiles at her. “The end has already come,” he says. “And we are in the after, now. Yes. We can do this.”

.

He writes because he always has, and he leaves his chronicles in the safest place, and then Death mounts his horse, leads his army, and goes to war.

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
monicawoe
Nov. 22nd, 2014 03:30 am (UTC)
Those first two are excellent!
tigriswolf
Nov. 22nd, 2014 09:16 pm (UTC)

Thank you for reading!
maldeluxx
Nov. 22nd, 2014 03:34 pm (UTC)
Yup, it's not just getting Bucky back that Steve gets... there's now also prank wars! *lol* XD

And I could see Steve getting so lost yet so determined if Bucky died. *brr*

Freddie and Radha was cute and heartwarming <3
tigriswolf
Nov. 22nd, 2014 09:16 pm (UTC)

Thank you so much!

Also, that icon is adorable.
maldeluxx
Nov. 23rd, 2014 11:15 am (UTC)
Thanks :) *hugs*
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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