This one is a one-shot, standalone. I don’t necessarily ship Steve and Natasha together so I left the female lead nameless here. But the more I wrote, the more I decided it was in fact Natasha. You be the judge of that.
Title: Come Over
Rating: PG-13 for referenced adult situations and language
Setting: Pre Infinity War
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author of this story. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators or producers of any previously copyrighted material. No copyright infringement intended. This is just for fun.
Winter in Brooklyn had never been this cold, this snowy. Steve Rogers wasn’t used to the blankets of snow that covered the acres around his cabin. He’d had to trade in his motorcycle for a pickup truck, traded in his uniforms for a warm jacket and flannel shirts. He could only imagine the hard time Bucky would give him if he were around.
Steve had been residing in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada. Just outside the US but in a place no one would think to look for him. He’d been able to keep himself under the radar the last six months. It was all he wanted for it to stay that way.
The air was cold as night set in, the sting of the whiskey sliding down his throat warming his chest. He’d been drinking more of it these days. While he couldn’t get drunk, that didn’t matter. It was more about the mental state he was in, the frustration of it all. And the loneliness. Not so much for just anyone, but in particular…her.
Fidgeting with his phone in his palm as he sat on the porch of the cabin staring off into the wilderness, he contemplated calling her. Staring at the small phone, the trac phone he only used in moments like this, he weighed the pros and cons of his potential actions.
He was absolutely no good for her. His frame of mind and his current situation with the United States was a glaring reminder of why relationships and Steve Rogers didn’t mix. He’d hardly dated since the ice, since joining the current time period. But something about her just didn’t let him rest.
It had been supposed to be a one night thing, a one time moment of passion. As they’d parted ways after that first night, they’d agreed not to do it again. It was no good for either of them. But damn if it hadn’t happened again. And each time their separation grew harder. She’d been the one to say ‘no more’ the first time; it was his turn the second time. It was a pattern all the way up until an argument over feelings they shouldn’t be having had separated them for good. That was over a month ago. He had said he wouldn’t call, that he didn’t care, it was fine if she wanted to end it all together, for the final time.
But it wasn’t fine. He missed her. He missed them. Their time together. He would have been lying to say that being with her wasn’t an outlet for his stress, for his frustration, a way to forget all that was going on without him. He was caught at a crossroads of his own, and somehow she soothed that storm within him. Without her, he was a ball of negative energy.
Picking up the phone, he flipped it open and pulled up her number. When the message page appeared, he wished he could blame the liquor on the words he typed but she would know that wasn’t truth.
“Come over,” was all he wrote before he hit send.
Staring up into the night sky, she watched her breath dissipate into the cold air. She’d never been much of a sleeper, not much for getting rest. Too restless, too busy, too unable to get out of her own head.
And if she was being honest, unable to let thoughts of him go.
She wondered about him constantly. It had been a month since their last exchange. It had been a call, brief and in the middle of the night. He hardly slept, she knew. She wasn’t sure if it was the serum or his restless soul but either way, it seemed the man could hardly catch a break.
She didn’t care though. Or at least she tried not to care. She didn’t want to care. Too much history, too much water under the bridge already. Their last fight had been enough. She didn’t have it in her to keep allowing herself to be beckoned back into his arms, only for her to know it wouldn’t work, it couldn’t work.
The ding of her phone caught her attention. Checking the lone clock on the wall she knew just who it would be. Dammit.
But her feet walked her to fetch the phone before her mind could talk herself out of it. She had it unlocked and had the message up before she chastised herself. And the words did nothing to ease her soul.
Biting her lip, she ached for him. Her body ached for him, her heart ached for him. It never worked. It never ended well. Why did they do this to themselves? She prayed for self-restraint as she replied.
She hit send with only that small reply. She swallowed hard and dropped her head. This. It always came back to this. She put distance between them (relatively speaking…she hadn’t left town yet because she couldn’t sum up the courage to leave him behind) but he could eliminate that distance in an instant.
“Come over.” Persistent bastard.
“It’s not a good idea.”
“None of my ideas ever are.”
“Well that’s the most truthful statement I’ve heard in a while.”
“Ouch. I’ll give you another one. I miss you.”
“Why not? You don’t miss me?”
“This never ends well.”
“I think it ends great. It’s the talking we suck at.”
“It’s more than the talking, Steve.”
“We’ll fix it. We’ll talk. I promise. Just come over.”
Her resolve cracked. Her fingers hovered over the keys. She couldn’t. She’d promised herself. She was desperately trying to turn over a new leaf, to not keep doing this to herself. She cared too much and it was slowly tearing her apart. And every time they parted ways worse than they came together, she felt broken. It couldn’t continue.
But the way it felt in his arms. Like home. Like she belonged there. He understood her on a level no one else did, like he could read her soul. She didn’t have to talk, she didn’t have to tell him what to do. He just knew. For his age and lack of experience, he made up in attentiveness and persistence. And he did everything right. Down to the glass of water as soon as they were finished. Fucker.
A resigned sigh left her lips and she tapped her fingers quickly along the keys.
“Give me an hour.”
It was no different. No matter how much time they spent apart, nothing changed. They moved together perfectly, in every way. Wordlessly. Sure there were moans, and words spoken, but not the true, meaningful ones either longed to hear. Because if they were both completely honest with themselves, they weren’t ready to speak them, and even if they did, it would only end in disaster.
She lay, head on his broad chest as she listened to the pounding of his heart. His arm was wrapped around her, his other hand caressing her arm softly. A heaviness lay in the air neither wanted to acknowledge.
“I wish this could work,” she whispered softly against his chest. Her head moved up and down with his sigh.
“Me too.” He replied just as quietly.
“It’s just not a good idea. It’s too complicated,” she carried on, not daring to glance up at him.
“I know. You’re right,” he agreed quietly. “Doesn’t change how I feel.”
“Doesn’t change it for me either,” she replied without hesitation, a hint of emotion to her voice.
Silence lapsed between them as they lay together under the warm blanket. Neither wanted to separate for they knew it would potentially be for the last time.
“I love you,” his words broke the silence and also broke her heart.
“Me too.” She couldn’t bring herself to say the words for she knew she wouldn’t be able to say them ever again. And while she didn’t know what lay ahead, she knew that Steve Rogers was a force to be reckon with. And that the love he carried for her wouldn’t go away. As much as she might want it to, it wouldn’t. And the heavens knew she had loved him for far longer than she’d ever admit aloud.
Steve stared at the ceiling as he held her against him. He knew this would be it. But that’s why he said it. He had to tell her, no matter what. So he took the chance. Let them slip out. At least she knew. No matter what happened.
“Don’t tell them you saw me.”
His words made her laugh a little and it was welcome. “You know I won’t.”
“I know, but I had to say it anyway,” he smiled a little. It felt good, yet sad.
“You gonna keep growing this beard out?”
“Not this again,” he sighed, releasing her with the laugh. She sat up, the sheet falling to her waist. She pulled her hair away from her neck.
“What? I’m just saying…it’s a little long and a little..unruly,” she ran her fingers over the rough hair.
“Unruly…,” he chuckled, wishing he could ravage her one last time. “You should go before I show you how truly unruly I can be…”
It was bittersweet, the parting. They both knew it was coming.
“You wish,” she teased, placing one last slow kiss to his swollen lips. She’d miss that beard, though she’d never say it aloud.
“Be careful out there,” he murmured into the kiss, wishing with all his might he could make her stay. It was better this way though.
“You know I will,” she assured him, placing one more kiss to his lips before slipping from the flannel sheets. She was gone as quietly as she’d come and as he lay staring up at the ceiling, alone once more, he contemplated what would come next for him. And her. He knew they would cross paths again. It was only a matter of when.