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Silver Crescent

Chapter Text

Early morning light warmed your face and lapped at your eyelids, bidding you to open them. Before you did you stretched out over the silky sheets of your bed with a content sigh, groaning and shifting as your bones popped and muscles stretched. 

 

Yawning you rubbed at your eyes and slid your feet to the plush carpet, wiggling your toes. It was just before seven, you noticed by glance at the small alarm clock beside your bed. Training wouldn't wait forever. 

 

Slipping into black yoga pants and a tank top, you brushed and pulled your hair up into a ponytail before slipping out of your quarters. Sam and Natasha were already in the kitchen--him making pancakes at the stove and Natasha sipping from a mug of steaming coffee. 

 

Waving them good morning you padded over to the fridge and and pulled out the orange juice, and the fixings for a BLT. As you were popping bread into the toaster Natasha spoke up.  

 

"You still sparring with me this morning, Rook?" You took no offense to the nickname. You were, after all, a rookie; allowed to participate in missions here or there, but only for gathering intel where there was very minimal risk. Even then, it was usually not without at least one other member of the team to watch your back.

 

"Do I have a choice, Red?" You snickered, peeking at her over your shoulder. She smirked in return. "Oh, absolutely not. I just know the illusion of free will makes people more comfortable." 

 

Sam barked out a laugh. "Easy there, Tash. You're starting to sound like Reindeer Games." 

 

The three of you shared a laugh as you perched atop the island across from Nat, feet dangling off the side. Mornings with the two Omegas were always calm and friendly, light teasing and yummy food. Mornings with the Alphas were fine, too, but they could grumble and puff their chests over something as small as who had a right to the last slice of bacon. 

 

Speaking of Alphas....you could smell Steve before he even entered the room: freshly laundered cotton, crisp, tangy apples and charcoal. 

 

"Haven't I told you about sitting on the island?" He sighed as he entered, mirth shining in his blue eyes. You rolled your eyes. "And didn't I tell you that you're America's daddy but not mine?" 

 

His cheeks pinkened adorably as Nat laughed, humming as she took another drink of coffee. 

 

"There's someone you have to meet." He looked to his right and jerked his head to motion the unseen person into view. 

 

A dark form came around the corner to his side, hands tucked into the pockets of a leather jacket. A navy blue Henley was underneath, skin tight against his taut muscles. His thick thighs were encased in black denim, heavy leather boots on his feet. 

 

You let your eyes take in a stubbled jaw that did nothing to hide its sharpness, or the cleft of his chin. Dark hair fell to just beneath his chin. Judging by the ends of it he'd just had it cut not long ago.

 

Eyes lifting slowly you found him already looking at you. The brilliance of his eyes made you suck in a sharp breath. They were the color of storm clouds, but so clear you felt like you could see right into his soul through them. 

 

The breath you'd taken in was laden with his scent; sharp, citrusy pine, bonfire smoke and something sweet--marshmallows, maybe? The smell warmed you from the inside, like a s'more around a campfire. 

 

"Y/N," you finally found your voice, hopping off the counter to offer him your hand. 

 

His eyes didn't stray from yours, and he made no move to take your hand until Steve elbowed him sharply in the side. Glaring at Steve for a moment, his eyes slipped back to your own.

 

"Bucky." His voice was soft but rough at the same time, as if he had gone a long time without speaking.  

 

With the simple word and your hand still hanging in the air he turned sharply on his heel, leaving as quickly as he had come. A small knot of disappointment curled into your stomach, though you weren't sure why. 

 

Steve had warned you that Bucky was still healing, still adapting even with the triggers removed. He was finally home from Wakanda, but clearly he still needed a lot of healing. 

 

He sighed heavily, "I'm sorry about him. He's..."

 

You waved off the explanation. "No worries, Goldy. Nat, you ready?" 

 

"To kick your ass? Always."

 

Your back hit the mat with a smack, chest heaving as you fought to catch your breath. Sweat was dripping down your body, making stray strands of hair cling to your face.  

 

"You know," you laughed. "If I could use my powers you'd be the one down here." 

 

Nat snorted. "Maybe. But you know you can't rely solely on them." 

 

Your powers were similar to Wanda's, in a way. You could affect the moods of others at will, and project yourself into their dreams if needed. Whenever possible you avoided using them. You didn't want anyone to think you manipulated them into feeling a certain way about you, and walking into their heads while they were unconscious was always eerie. 

 

Like walking through the woods in the dark, unfamiliar and anxious.  

 

And was likely the reason Bucky had seemed so weary about you, you realized with a sharp pang of guilt. Is that why he wouldn't touch you? Surely Steve had told him that you would never do that to him, especially after HYDRA. 

 

"Do you think that's why he avoided me?" You asked from the floor. 

 

Nat cocked her head at you softly. "I think Bucky treats anything or anyone new with caution." She shrugged. "Healing is a winding road. Or maybe he noticed you undressing him with your eyes." She lifted a perfectly shaped brow.

 

You scoffed and rolled to your feet. "I did no such thing, Tashy." 

 

Her nose wrinkled at the nickname. "No wonder you and Steve get along." 

 

You shot her a bewildered look as you toweled off, ready to hit the showers and wash away the tang of sweat from your skin. 

 

"You both seem to like getting punched." She laughed as you flipped her the bird on your way out. 

 

Inwardly you chastised yourself---if Nat had noticed you checking him out, the chances were good that he had too. Making him uncomfortable was not high on your priority list, no matter how attractive the Alpha was. You would just have to be more careful in the future to be professional. 

Chapter Text

The library at the tower was like a forgotten gem--it was rarely ever used, and housed an array of books on everything from autobiographies, fiction novels, to engineering manuals. Truth be told, it was your favorite place in the whole tower. 

 

It was quiet, as usual, when you pushed open the door to peruse the shelves which were stacked almost to the ceiling, creating a sort of labyrinth of parchment and bindings. 

 

Natural light spilled in through the large windows and, somewhere, there sounded the ticking of a large clock. You took a moment to breathe in the smell of leather and parchment and dry ink before slipping through the stacks to begin your journey. 

 

Often you would spend hours just looking through the books, reading the back covers of ones that piqued your interest. And you always made sure to have your satchel with you to take a few back to your room. 

 

You were somewhere in the romance section a few hours later, three books already settled into your satchel with room for one more. A cheesy romance novel was just what you needed to balance out your choices. The one you wanted was a few feet over your head, so you slid the ladder to the appropriate place before climbing up to retrieve it. 

 

Your hand had just reached out for the book when a slam drew your attention sharply. Forgetting about the ladder, your body twisted sharply to find the source of the sound. 

 

Unfortunately the movement jostled you too much and, with a gasp, your fingers slipped from the ladder and down you fell. Your heart charged into your throat, eyes blown wide with panic before slamming shut to brace for the impact. 

 

It never came.

 

Instead you landed with a soft oof into something hard yet soft, much softer than the floor would have been. Your heart was still racing in your chest when you pried your eyes open only to be met with icy blue orbs surrounded by dark hair. 

 

Bucky. 

 

His jaw was sharply set, the muscle in the side pulsating as he clenched his jaw again and again. 

 

"B-Bucky, thank you." You squeaked, cheeks flushing hot with embarrassment under his gaze, and maybe a little something else given the way his hard body was pressed against and holding your own. The hard lines of his chest were pressed tightly against the side of your own, the ridges of his abs sharply defined against your arm and the side of your breast.

 

His metal hand was at your back, flesh hand tight around your jean clad thigh. Swallowing hard around the lump in your throat, you struggled to find words under his intense gaze. 

 

There was nothing you could do but watch as his nostrils flared and the inky black of his pupils expanded as he breathed in deeply. His head dipped towards yours, nose nudging your jaw to the side to bare your throat to him. 

 

At the first press of the tip of his nose to your jaw you shivered, the heat of his breath spilling down your throat and collarbones. He nudged his nose harder against you, breathing in more deeply as your heart kicked up speed once again. 

 

Afraid you would spoil him if you moved, you kept still and let him take in your scent. It had been a while, probably, since he had met anyone new and Alphas were known for familiarizing themselves with new ones to be certain no threat was detected. 

 

It also helped to establish presentation, ranking in the pack, and available mates. It just usually wasn't so...intimate. 

 

Bucky was still healing, though, you reminded yourself. Had been a hostage for seventy years and was allowed not even the smallest shred of freedom or autonomy. So you kept silent except for the soft, jagged, submissive breaths tearing in and out of your chest. 

 

He made a slow trail down to the crook where neck met shoulder and inhaled deeply, exhaling in a soft growl. The vibrations so close to your bare sweet spot made a squeak erupt from your parted lips. "Bucky!" 

 

You hadn't meant to sound so scandalized, but it was a gesture you were not accustomed to and it wasn't exactly appropriate for an Alpha to get so close to an Omega's scent gland if he didn't intend to mark her. 

 

The squeak had the desired affect, though not the way you imagined. Immediately his arms fell away from your body and you fell once more towards the floor. This time you hit the hardwood with a smack and a groan. 

 

Bucky paid no mind, staring down at you for a moment before moving swiftly back over to the books he'd dropped on the floor to scoop them back into his arms. You glared at his retreating form. "Asshole," you muttered under your breath as you pulled yourself back to your feet. 

 

The library doors shut a moment later with another loud slam, startling you once more. Your teeth grit together. "This is a library," you huffed as you stepped back onto the ladder. 

 

Clearly Bucky still had a lot to learn. 

 

You hoped the third encounter with him would be better than the first two as you plucked the book from the shelf at last, and hurriedly descended the ladder. Lest Bucky come back to startle you once more. 

 

It wasn't until you were in your room, curled up in the window to read, that your heart finally slowed back to a reasonable pace. You lost yourself in the pages, though the icy blue of his eyes boring into yours was lodged firmly into the back of your head. The way he had sniffed at your throat, the intimate way his nose painted a hot trail down your throat. In the moment you'd had no time to appreciate such small details but, now, they played on a torturous loop again and again to be analyzed. But Bucky's face was remained blank and impassive, if a little angry. Which was ridiculous, considering he had startled you and not the other way around.

 

Third time's the charm, right? 

Chapter Text

"Steve, c'mon, you gotta be joking." You scoffed, shaking your head at him. As Captain he was in charge of making the training pairs, and he rotated them every few weeks to keep everyone fresh and to build a healthy team dynamic. 

 

This week, however, he must have suffered a terrible head injury as he had placed you with Bucky. 

 

"Y/N, training partners are not a laughing matter." He said sternly, arms crossed crossed over his broad chest. 

 

You took in a deep breath to calm your growing irritation. "Clearly, as neither of us is laughing. Can't you just pair him with Nat or something?" Giving him your best puppy dog eyes, you prayed he would change you partners before anyone else saw the schedule. 

 

His face remained stern. "I already tacked it to the event board." He gestured to the single tack in the corkboard next to the kitchen sink. You lifted a brow at him, still trying to contain your growing irritation.

 

"So just...un-tack it," you sighed exasperatedly, reaching for the tack. Steve swat your hand away with a look of disapproval. 

 

"I'm sorry, Rook, but my decision is final. If I find out you tried to switch partners I'll double your training time." He warned, effectively ending the conversation. 

 

He would hear nothing more of it, and you weren't willing to risk added training time with the man who seemed to despise you. So you strengthened your resolve and hoped this third encounter would undo the first two. 

 

---------

Bucky was in the gym already when you arrived the next morning, already hard at work doing squat presses with at least triple your body weight. 

 

His back was to you, which left ample opportunity to admire his form---the strong muscles flexing in his back and legs as he squatted, the little grunts of effort as he lifted back up. 

 

Swallowing hard you made your way over to him and cleared your throat softly. "Looks like we're sparring together today!" You chirped.

 

He didn't even glance over at you. "No."

 

Pushing down the irritation you gave a laugh. "I know, it can be weird when you're new. Not that you're new just that you're...recently back, and I know it can be hard to adjust." 

 

He set the weight down gently, using a towel to wipe his face though there wasn't a drop of sweat on it. You took it as a sign that he was finally relenting.

 

"Great so I figured we could start with.."

 

Bucky whipped around to face you, his eyes like shards of ice that bore into you. It brought goosebumps rushing to the surface of your body. 

 

"I said no." The three words were practically growled down at you. 

 

You blinked up at him, the hair raising up along the back of your neck. "We have no choice. Steve makes the schedule. So we're training. Today. Right now." 

 

Bucky took a step towards you, prompting you to take one back, and another and another until your back was pressed to the wall and his arms caged you in on either side. 

 

"No." He did growl this time, the muscles in his throat taut with tension. "We won't. 

 

Your irritation finally bubbled over and, with a swipe, you kicked his legs out from under him and moved around him. 

 

He looked surprised for a moment before pulling himself up to stand. "I'm not gonna spar with you." 

 

Refusing to listen, you took a swing at the soldier's stupidly handsome face. He dodged it with ease. You tried again and, again, he moved out of the way of your strike. 

 

You kept going, throwing punches and kicks at the super soldier in an attempt to engage him. Swiftly and efficiently he side stepped every one, never so much as bringing his hands up to block. He didn't need to, with as quick as he was. 

 

As you tried again and again to engage him your embarrassment grew with your inability to land a single punch. Your anger rose, too, making your hits sloppier and less calculated. 

 

"I don't make the rules, Buchanan. So spar with me so we can be done with this!" You hissed vehemently. 

 

He rolled his eyes, as if you were a child needling him for attention he was unwilling to give. "No." 

 

You rushed him again, spinning your body into a roundhouse kick. His flesh hand shot up and gripped your ankle sharply but not painfully, inches away from his face. 

 

Bucky sighed and, with a twist of his wrist, unbalanced you and sent you tumbling softly to the mat. 

 

Glaring up at him as you heaved for breath, a growl worked up your throat and out of your mouth. Bucky was over you in a flash, pinning your body with an icy stare that you felt down to your stomach. 

 

It fluttered strangely in response to his return growl. 

 

"Back off, 'Mega." He sneered in a thick, deep, Brooklyn accent. "I'm not gonna spar with you. Not now. Not ever." 

 

Your mouth dropped open to argue until he growled again, deeper and more commanding. The sound made you want to bare your throat submissively. 

 

"I'll talk to Steve." 

 

And then he was off you and pushing out of the gym, the door slamming shut behind him once more. 

 

You released the breath you hadn't realized you had been holding since he pinned you to the mat with a single flick of his wrist. Effortless. It shouldn't have been so goddamn attractive. 

 

"That man has no respect for doors." You huffed, dragging yourself up from the mat. 

 

Steve chose that moment to bound in with Tony, his usual jovial smile in place and pep in his step. "Hey! How did training go?!" 

 

Given that you were sweaty and worn out you couldn't fault him for believing you had actually worked out with Bucky. Still, the anger had to go somewhere. 

 

You sent him a glare in return. "Why don't you ask the asshole you call a friend?" You snapped, pushing around him to leave the gym. 

 

In your absence Steve winced, prompting Tony to laugh at him. "Sure you wanna keep them paired together?" 

 

Steve shot him a look. "Absolutely. The training pairs are final." 

 

Tony rolled his eyes. "I know, I saw the board Rogers." 

Chapter Text

You're sitting in a chair in one of the many conference rooms in the tower, still drying paint clinging to your hair and splattered over your face and neck in neon bursts of hot pink and bright yellow. 

 

Beside you Bucky is even worse off--half of his face is a pylon orange, like some sort of trash panda opera phantom. The florescent color makes his eyes burn much brighter too, the orange streaked wildly through dark and silky strands of hair.  

 

Across from you both is Steve--red in the face and paint free, his eyes set hard and jaw twitching as he chews over the words he wants to say. 

 

The day had started off fine but, as seemed to be the recurring pattern, Bucky had to go and fuck it all up. He had been refusing to train with you, still, other than dodging the kicks and punches you sent his way. Other than occasionally catching your foot or hand within inches of his face, he never so much as raised a hand to attack back or defend himself.

 

A fact that was endlessly frustrating, considering you couldn't train properly with a mannequin. Then had come the simulation training, also a regular occurence. It was really just capture the flag, with paintball guns, teams of two, and plenty of traps set for those who weren't paying close enough attention. 

 

To say things had gone down hill right out of the gate was an understatement. Bucky had wanted you to basically follow after him like a lost dog, refusing to work together as a team. The pair of you had dissolved quickly into a verbal sparring match before one of the opposing teams shot at you both. 

 

Vests were against the rules for the game. The paintballs wouldn't kill you, and the bright flare of pain was a sharp reminder to always, always, be on guard---and to watch each other's sides.  

 

Steve was still working up the proper speech to deliver when Bucky pushed a purple covered hand through his hair. "Look, Stevie, I get it. We can just switch partners and be done with it. She clearly doesn't know how to follow directions." He laughed. 

 

Your eyes narrowed sharply, head whipping around to face the brunet. "Me?! You're the one parading around like a knothead!"

 

He scoffed. "Seriously? Coming from a bratty little---"

 

"You better watch how you finish that sentence, you overgrown son of a--"

 

"Oooh, I'm terrified. What are you gonna do, huh?!"

 

"How about I show you?!"

 

The yelling had easily started up between you again and, with the rise in volume, Steve's grasp slipped on the last thread of his patience. 

 

"ENOUGH!" He barked loudly, nostrils flaring angrily. Both you and Bucky quieted immediately, shrinking up a bit like scolded children. An assessment that didn't feel far from the truth of it. 

 

Steve dragged in a deep breath, fighting back a growl as he spoke. "I don't give a damn about how you feel about one another. But we are a team and I expect you to behave as such. Hate each other all you like, but when it starts to interfere with what we do here then I have a problem. So it ends now, do I make myself clear?" 

 

The pair of you nodded, Bucky pushing his hand through his hair again. He recovered faster than you, standing up from his chair with an easy smile across the table at his best friend. 

 

"Hear ya loud and clear, Stevie." He clapped him on the shoulder. "So, we'll switch partners, you and I can spar a few rounds, maybe grab a bite and we'll forget all about this." 

 

Steve's jaw twitched at that, his eyes narrowing at Bucky. "I'm not switching you, Buck." 

 

The brunet tried to laugh it off, "You made your point, Stevie. Just make the switch." 

 

He shrugged Bucky's hand off his shoulder. "Bucky, no. You may be my best friend outside of this room but right now I am your Captain, and this is an order."

 

Bucky blinked owlishly for a moment, as if he were confused by the sudden turn of events. You were helpless to do anything but watch, afraid of turning their ire onto you. Not that either would harm you, no, but being scolded by Steve Roger's made you feel like a grade A asshole, so you kept silent as they seemed to square up against one another. 

 

"An order? C'mon punk, don't be such a-"

 

Steve did growl then, puffing his chest out slightly. "I said stand down, Buck. My decision is final. You will find a way to get along." 

 

Bucky's tongue swiped out to wet his lips, his own chest puffing out. The smell of alpha testosterone was quickly seeping into the room, making you feel warm and a little dizzy. 

 

Bucky's eyes darted to yours for a quick beat. "Y/N, you should leave." He growled lowly, commanding. 

 

So perfect was the alpha command that your body didn't question it, legs moving of their own accord to draw up into a standing position. You hesitated as you realized how quickly you had obeyed. 

 

"Cap?" You prodded gently. 

 

Steve didn't even blink. "Bucky's right, you should go. He and I need to....talk." 

 

The way he said it made your stomach twist with something---fear? Excitement? It was hard to say, but it kept your feet glued to the spot. Noticing you hadn't left yet Bucky sighed and turned his eyes fully to you. They were still jagged ice, but something softer flickered in them for a moment so fleeting it was impossible to name.

 

"We'll be fine, but you do have to leave. Go on." He growled the last bit a little more harshly. Unwilling to be dragged back into the mess you conceded and headed for the door once more. 

 

"Whatever. Just try not to kill each other." 

 

You slipped out the door, but looked back over your shoulder at the pair of them. Both of their chests were puffed out, nearly touching in their heated anger. A low growl rumbled from each of their chests, a clear display of dominance on both sides.

 

A wave of Bucky's scent hit you like a wall, making your hands tremble slightly with the force of it. The door clicked shut behind you, sealing off the super soldier duo.

 

As soon as it was shut their growls got louder, nearly vibrating the floor beneath your feet. 

 

It wasn't until you were fresh out of the shower in your room that you realized Bucky hadn't directed most of his anger at you, but at Steve. And his glance at you had been almost...tender. 

 

Whatever his problem was you hoped Steve could get him to knock it off. Because as much as you hated to admit it, he was right. It was upsetting the team dynamic. 

Chapter Text

You adjusted the strap of your duffel bag on your shoulder as you walked up the ramp to the quinjet. This mission couldn't have come at a better time for you. After the confrontation between Bucky and Steve you hadn't seen the former, and the latter would never tell you what the two of them discussed. 

 

As far as you knew Bucky was still your sparring partner, Steve would have told you otherwise if he'd changed it. And it had remained the same on his precious list. 

 

It was an Intel gathering mission, as usual, being that you were still not allowed on combat missions. Steve didn't think you were ready and you trusted his judgment. 

 

Still, it was nice to get out of the tower. You would be going to Alaska, somewhere fairly deep in the bush to a remote, abandoned base. There was a cottage set up near the base so you could stay overnight before making the trek back to the jet. 

 

Even better was that Sam would be your partner. He was your favorite, other than Natasha, to go on these missions with. He always found a way to make them more fun and the banter between you both was easy. Just what you needed after all the tension you'd been surrounded by lately. 

 

As you waited for Sam you plopped down into the copilot chair, making sure your bag was stowed properly after double checking one last time that you had everything you needed. 

 

It was still early morning, the sky just beginning to show streaks of pink and orange through the hazy blue of dawn. Finally you heard light footsteps on the ramp and wiggled happily in your seat.

 

"About time, Dark Wing. I've been waiting for you."

 

You spun around in the chair for dramatic effect, feeling every bit like a noir villain. All you were missing was a cat on your lap. It wasn't Sam that greeted you, however. It was a silent, unreadable Bucky Barnes. 

 

He did little more than lift a brow, stow away his own bag, and take root in the pilot's chair. 

 

"Is Sam coming too?" You wondered aloud, nerves rising up within you at the thought of spending a night in the Alaskan bush with Bucky. Alone. Remote. Not that you even fathomed he could hate you enough to kill you. Maybe abandon you in the wilderness, though.

 

Bucky pushed a button and the ramp closed noisily and slow, sealing you inside at a slow pace as if daring you to jump out before the doors slid shut completely. 

 

"Nope." He popped the 'p' softly, but said no more. 

 

Clearing your throat you settled back into your chair and buckled up. "Why not?" 

 

Bucky kept his eyes forward. "Change of plans." 

 

Your eyes rolled. Okay. Good explanation, Barnes. With his eyes on the runway you took a moment to look him over--his hair was pulled back into a neat bun, jaw freshly shaven, and his usual black tac suit snug on every inch of his body. 

 

There was a small, dark, bruise along his cheekbone. Your eyes narrowed in on it.

 

"Did Steve beat you into taking his place?" You joked, hoping to lighten the mood. Even if it was a joke about how clearly and sharply Bucky disliked you. 

 

Again, he didn't even spare you a glance. "No." 

 

Another eye roll. "Okay. Well I can tell this will be super fun." You sulked, sinking further into your chair. "Surprised you didn't tear off your other arm to avoid partnering up with me." 

 

As you spoke you pulled out your phone and plugged in your earbuds, jamming them into your ears with more force than strictly necessary. "If you're gonna hurtle me from the plane do me a favor, and don't wake me." You huffed before pressing play on the first song you found, determined to fill the awkward silence with noise. 

 

You had at least a few hours to kill before you would land and, if Bucky wasn't going to speak, you might as well get some extra shut eye. 

 

It was difficult not to let your thoughts wander back to his confrontation with Steve and what had transpired after you left. The bruise on Bucky's cheek seemed to indicate it had gotten physical, but you knew Bucky would be even less forthcoming about it than Steve. 

 

Staying hadn't been an option, either, with two alpha super soldiers ready to have it out with each other. Clearly they hadn't killed each other, so that was something. And Steve hadn't seen fit to keep Bucky from this mission, so you were no closer to figuring out what had come of it all.

 

If Bucky's silence was any indication, not much. Eventually your thoughts settled enough to allow you to slip into a dark, dreamless sleep. Your last thought before succumbing to sleep was that you were gonna deck Steve or Sam, possibly both, for putting you in this position. 

 

A few hours later you were woken by a gentle shaking of your shoulder. You groaned, burrowing into the warm touch against your shoulder. The scent of cedar and woodsmoke filled your senses, threatening to lull you even deeper into sleep. 

 

"C'mon, time to get moving." A deep voice husked. Your eyes opened slowly, drowsy, fluttering against the light spilling into the jet. Your cold nose was burrowed into a soft wrist. You snapped up like a shot, shaking the remnants of sleep from your body.

 

Bucky cleared his throat and took a step back, the muscle in his jaw twitching as he flexed the fingers of his flesh hand. Your cheeks flamed hotly as you scrambled to gather up your bag. "Sorry." You offered quickly, clearing your own throat. "Ready when you are, Sarge." 

 

He shouldered his own bag, refusing to meet your eyes as he did. "Then let's go, we're burning daylight." He jammed the button for the ramp and hurried over to it, as if your mere presence was torture for him.

 

Words lodged and dried in your throat, forming a lump that was difficult to swallow around. You wanted to tell him it was an accident, the intimate gesture of burrowing into his wrist. That it wouldn't happen again. But your stomach fluttered and rolled at the mere idea of it. 

 

As much as you hated to admit it, it stung in a way you weren't expecting. Bucky had made it clear he didn't like you, didn't want to be your friend, but you could hold no such distaste for him. Not when he smelled so good and your body responded to him so easily. 

 

And his reaction spelled nothing but rejection. With a bone deep sigh you followed him down the ramp and into the wilderness, hoping by some miracle that the mission wouldn't require you to stay in the cottage at all. Even if it meant sleeping in the uncomfortable seat of the jet. 

 

Anything had to be better than a full night trapped in a small cottage with a man you were painfully attracted to, but he couldn't even bear the thought of being your friend. 

Chapter Text

The silence stretched on for the entire walk to the base, nothing but the sounds of nature to provide any sort of entertainment. It made the already long walk feel twice as long. Once you made it there the plan was made to split up--Bucky at one end of the base and you at the other. 

 

There were databases on either end and the job would be quicker if you each took one. The base itself was fairly large, the concrete and steel covered in moss and vegetation. 

 

Inside it wasn't much better. The whole place reeked of rot and mildew, dark and shadowed even with the large windows allowing light to spill through. Thankfully you didn't need to go too deep into the building to find the room you were looking for. 

 

The door required a hard push and then you were through, swatting away cobwebs and spiders before setting to work. Unsurprisingly the comm you'd jammed into your ear was silent but for the sounds of the building--the soft patter of water droplets and the quiet hum of a computer. 

 

Flashddive plugged in and downloading, there was nothing left to do but wait. Your head tipped back against the chair you had plopped into, fingers drumming over the vest of your tactical suit impatiently. 

 

A new sound had you peeking up slightly at attention, straining to make out what it had been. The room was heavily shadowed, just enough light to not be totally blind. The dim light from the computer didn't hurt, either. 

 

Just as you began to slink back down into your seat you heard it again, louder this time. The sound of something breathing. 

 

At first you assumed it was Bucky--but even the asshole's breath was silent, as silent as his footsteps had been on the forest floor. Carefully you slid your gun from its holster and switched the safety off, eyes searching the shadows more intensely. 

 

It was most likely an animal, you assured yourself. It was the Alaskan wilderness, after all. But it could have been anything from a bear to a moose or squirrel for all you knew. 

 

After what felt like forever, heart thrumming with adrenaline, your eyes locked onto it as it stepped from the shadows. 

 

It stood about as large as Bucky, humanoid but covered in thick gray fur. Sickly yellow eyes were locked onto yours and its mouth opened to reveal a sharp set of canines. 

 

In the next breath you'd raised your gun and fired off a shot, and then another, as it growled and rushed towards you. As it advanced you fired off shot after shot, your ears ringing, until the clip was empty. 

 

You cursed as it lunged, throwing yourself from the chair and onto the floor. Bucky's voice was muffled over your comm, the words garbled as your ears kept ringing, heart pounding loudly over the sound. 

 

The thing was fast, hot on your tail as you ran from it. You had hit it with every shot, the holes evident even through the thick fur. But it hadn't slowed it down, or caused much bleeding. 

 

As it plunged again you threw yourself onto the floor and rolled under a desk, rolling out the other side. 

 

Forgetting the flash drive you sprang for the door, hoping it would be enough to trap the beast inside once more. 

 

You didn't make it, the creature tackling you to the wet floor painfully. Hot breath rained down on you, the stench nearly enough to make you sick. This was it, then. You were going to die at the hands of a feral werewolf in the middle of Alaska.

 

Just as you inhaled deeply to scream for Bucky, the heavy weight of the wolf was lifted from you. Quickly you rolled onto your back to see what had happened. 

 

Bucky stood between you and the wolf, a ferocious growl tearing through his chest. The wolf had been rammed off you, rolled across the floor but stood up again to square off with Bucky. 

 

Again its mouth opened to reveal the sharp canines but, to your surprise, it spoke through a snarl. "Mine." It huffed, pointing towards you with its chin. Your stomach rolled again, heart still slamming into your ribs. 

 

Bucky didn't back down, slipping a knife free from the holster at his thigh. "Over my dead body, mutt." 

 

Your breath began to hitch as the two of them rushed each other, your throat tight with fear as they collided into each other, falling to the floor in a blurred heap of flesh and fur. 

 

They both moved so quickly and the room was so shadowed it was nearly impossible to see what was happening. Desks and chairs were shattered under their combined weight, growls nearly deep enough to make the ground tremble. 

 

Bucky cried out as it managed to latch onto his flesh arm. He ripped it away with his left, throwing it into the wall. When it stood up again it lunged for you once more, having seen the opening to do so. Your heart pounded so hard your chest hurt, body paralyzed with fear and shame that you hadn't put up a better fight. 

 

Just feet from you Bucky's body slammed into it again and, this time, his knife was driven down into its neck again and again and again until it stopped fighting and went slack, Bucky's knife soaked in blood. 

 

The now empty yellow eyes were locked onto yours as it stopped breathing, your own still hitching in your throat again and again. You couldn't look away. 

 

Bucky rushed to you as soon as he was certain it was dead, "Y/N," he called. No answer. He tried again, still nothing. 

 

"Omega," Bucky growled, demanding attention but not enough to frighten you further. That did it, your eyes snapping to his and away from it. 

 

Still, you were silent. Bucky held your gaze, "That's it, keep looking at me. You're safe. Are you hurt?"

 

When you didn't answer he huffed, "'Mega, are you hurt?" 

 

You swallowed hard around the knot still lodged in your throat. "I...I don't think so. H-h-how did y-you..?" 

 

When your eyes began to drift back towards the wolf his hand cupped your jaw, forcing your eyes to stay on his. "The knife is coated in silver." He answered softly. 

 

"The cottage is just a few miles from here." He continued, tongue swiping over his lips. "Hold onto me." 

 

Before you could ask him what he meant he was scooping you up off the ground, one arm around your back and the other under your knees.

 

Reflexively your arms wound around his neck, too overwhelmed to even think to argue. "Omega," he growled softly, commanding your attention once more. "Don't look. Focus on me. I've got you." 

 

You buried your face into his shoulder to avoid the temptation to look, breathing in his scent as a consequence. The scent of cedar and bonfire smoke flooded your senses, warming and calming you from the inside out. 

 

And, if he noticed you practically nuzzling into his throat as he carried you he said nothing of it. 

Chapter Text

When you reached the cottage Bucky set you down gently outside the door, making sure your legs were steady before letting go completely.

 

"I should do a quick sweep, make sure it's empty." 

 

It was smart, but you couldn't help the flash of fear that sparked through you at the prospect of him leaving you alone. He picked up on it instantly, a crease forming between his brows before he stepped close to you. 

 

Hesitantly his head dropped, his nose nudging into your throat, encouraging you to bare it to him. You did, a hot thrill rushing through your body like heat lightning. 

 

Your heart quickened, eyes fluttering shut as a shiver rippled down your spine at the feel of his warm breath on your neck. Teeth sunk into your bottom lip to smother the whine that threatened to escape. 

 

When you were certain you could speak steadily you couldn't help but ask him, "What are you doing?" 

 

A soft rumble vibrated his chest, "Scenting you." He husked against the shell of your ear, nose pressing harder under your jaw with a deep inhale. His stubble rasped over your soft skin, your fingers gripping his vest tightly at the rush of heat it sent between your legs. 

 

"If there are any more surprises, it'll deter them from you." 

 

You knew it had to be logical on Bucky's part, and nothing more. Most predators would avoid and Omega that smelled of an Alpha, knowing that a fight was likely if they were to try. Other animals could smell it, too, and tended to steer clear. 

 

Even so, you couldn't help the way your thighs pressed together in an attempt to relieve the sudden ache between them. 

 

His nose brushed back down your throat, your fingers white knuckling his vest as he brushed against your scent gland. When his tongue slipped out to swipe over it you were helpless to your body's reaction. 

 

Your back arched, a soft whimper escaping your parted lips. "Alpha." It was a broken, needy whine even to your own ears. You could feel him tense against you as soon as the word slipped out. 

 

He took a step back, his eyes shut tight at he sucked a breath in through his nose. When he opened them his lips parted, as if there was something he wanted to say. 

 

His mouth snapped shut before he swallowed hard and cleared his throat. "Wait here." He insisted instead, his brows furrowed with an unrecognizable emotion. You hated that he was so hard to read.

 

Was he angry with you? Disappointed in your lack of control? Had it been hard for him to control himself? With how quickly he retreated you were certain it had only been so heated on your end. He had to be able to smell how wet he'd made you and the thought made you hot with embarrassment. 

 

The shame you had felt earlier rolled back in like a storm-cloud. You had frozen in the face of real danger, had let fear and panic take the wheel rather than remaining calm and logical. If it hadn't been for Bucky, you would be dead. 

 

And he had carried you to the cottage, scented you to help protect you and you had whined for him like a bitch in heat. You weren't even stronger than your biology. He had to be disgusted by it, having been painfully clear that he wanted nothing to do with you. He was just being professional. Clinical. 

 

For the first time you realized just how novice you were to all of this---how much training you still had to do to be ready, both with your physical ability and your super human ones. 

 

By the time Bucky returned the hot rush of arousal had gone cold, replaced by a deep rooted shame and embarrassment deep in your stomach. You couldn't even meet his eyes. 

 

"It's clear." You followed him in silently, barely looking up to glance around the cozy space. 

 

"You should sit." He nodded to the couch. "I'll fix something to eat." 

 

Your teeth ground together, fighting the urge to snap at him. To lash outward with the anger you were feeling towards yourself. For misreading his actions as something more intimate than logical. 

 

You kept it back, collapsing onto the couch as he padded into the small kitchen. Stark had made sure it was stocked with bare essentials before your arrival. It was amazing what his money could buy. 

 

As he moved about the kitchen you could feel his eyes on you more than once, probably making sure you hadn't collapsed into panic again. Or merely a protective reflex. It did nothing to soothe you, adding kindling to the fire burning through you. 

 

Deep down you knew it wasn't his fault, but being angry was easier than feeling sad. And he had been nothing but a prick towards you before this, so perhaps he had earned it. 

 

You still kept your tongue through the dinner he had made, though you barely tasted it. Afterwards he gathered up the dishes. "Go to bed, we'll leave at first light."

 

Your jaw clenched, a growl slipping free without your permission. "Stop doing that." You spat at him. 

 

Bucky didn't so much as flinch. "Doing what?" He asked with his back to you, settling the dishes in the sink. 

 

"Acting like I'm helpless." You growled. 

 

"I never said that." He sighed back, irritation clear in his tone. 

 

"But you're thinking it, aren't you? Poor little Omega, froze up like a pussy in the face of actual danger."

 

His shoulders tensed, his eyes hard as he turned to face you. Broad arms crossed over his chest. "You're putting words in my mouth." 

 

You rolled your eyes. "Just acknowledging the truth." 

 

Bucky shook his head. "Go get some sleep, it's been a long day." 

 

The table shook as you pushed yourself up to stand, jaw clenched tight. "Fuck you, Bucky." 

 

He took a deep breath. "I'm not letting you goad me into a fight." 

 

You scoffed back at him. "Why not? Steve's not here. We both know he forced you to come so just say it, tell me how pathetic you think I am." 

 

He didn't rise to the bait. "You really need to go to bed." 

 

In a flash your palms slammed down onto the table, arms shaking with your rage. "God, why didn't you just let it kill me and save you the trouble?!" Your chest was heaving with emotion, breaths ragged. 

 

To your disappointment Bucky once again refused to rise to the bait. If anything he deflated, shoulders slumping fractionally and his eyes softened to soft pools of water, the steel blue edge of his alpha gone. 

 

"Please, just go get some sleep." His voice was soft and patient, near pleading. It made you feel like a spoiled child dealing with a frustrated parent. 

 

The anger fizzled out swiftly, and suddenly you wanted nothing more than to escape the tension between you, the weight of words he wouldn't say. He was probably convinced you would crumble again under the weight of the truth.

 

But if it was already so obvious, what was the harm in saying it aloud? Did it have something to do with whatever he and Steve had argued about? Afraid to disappoint America's golden boy? 

 

The same questions kept cropping up again and again, with Bucky none too helpful in providing answers. If he hated you, he could at least tell you why. 

 

"Answer one thing for me, and then I'll go and I promise not to speak for the rest of the trip."

 

He paused, straightening up at the offer. Hesitation was written softly across his face but, finally, he nodded. 

 

You sucked in a deep breath and squared your shoulders, meeting his eyes with as much confidence as you could muster. "Why did Steve force you to come on this mission?"

 

His broad arms were still crossed over his chest, brows still drawn together. "He didn't. I volunteered." 

 

With that he cleared his throat and pushed off the counter, his back to you. 

 

Your jaw dropped at the information, mind reeling to try and puzzle out why he would do such a thing. None of it was adding up for you, refusing to make sense. He hated you so much he couldn't even spar with you, and spoke as little as possible but volunteered to go on a mission alone to Alaska? 

 

There was so much more you wanted to say, to ask him, but you had made an agreement and you knew he wouldn't give you more than he was obligated to. So with great difficulty you eyed his back for a moment, as if you could see into his head, before turning to make good on your end of the agreement. 

 

As you slipped into the bedroom you could have sworn you heard him husk a soft "goodnight" before the door clicked shut behind you. Though your mind was still racing the soft bed reminded you how exhausted you were. You were asleep before you even pulled the covers over your body. 

Chapter Text

Cold sweat covered every inch of your body, soaking your hairline. Your heart was galloping wildly in your chest, breaths tearing in and out raggedly. 

 

"Omega!" The commanding growl snagged your attention immediately, the world slowly coming into focus. 

 

You were on your back in bed, Bucky straddling your middle and his hands pinning your arms by the wrist to the damp sheets beneath you. His chest was bare and heaving, hair tousled and his eyes a deep cobalt. 

 

There was a bright red handprint across his cheek, his lips parted as he dragged in a breath. He noticed the instant your eyes focused, his tense shoulders slumping slightly in relief. 

 

"You were having a nightmare." He explained gently, easily picking up your confusion. "You okay?" 

 

You opened your mouth to speak, but the words wouldn't come. The second your lips parted you remembered your earlier promise to keep silent the remainder of the mission. 

 

The guilt and shame were tripled as you woke fully---the attack you had frozen for, Bucky saving you and carrying you to the cottage, your outburst at him. All of it. And now your nightmare had gone and ripped him from sleep and, from the looks of it, you'd slapped him. 

 

Snapping your mouth shut you chose to nod instead. His position over you wasn't helping matters either, his flesh hand warm and soft around your wrist and the other--hard and silver, cool against your fevered skin.

 

He didn't buy your nonverbal confirmation. "Bullshit. You're shakin', and ya smell terrified." His deep words were like honeyed gravel; soft and rough all at once, lilting with a distinct Brooklyn accent. 

 

You sniffed haughtily and turned your face away from his, "Sorry I woke you, alright?" You snapped, desperate for him to leave before you could make a bigger fool of yourself. "I'm fine." 

 

He quirked a dark brow. "Liar." 

 

Your wrists wriggled in his grip, attempting to slip free of his hold. Bucky tightened his grip, but not nearly enough to hurt you. "What's it to you, anyway?!" 

 

The words came out sharp,defensive. You weren't even mad at him, not really, but shame and embarrassment and your body's instant reaction to him left you feeling far too vulnerable. 

 

Every deep breath smothered you with his scent--strong cedar, warm smoke and that underlying sweet tang, stronger with the thick trees surrounding the cottage. It was already working to slow your racing heart.

 

Bucky sighed heavily, his flesh thumb sweeping gently over the pulse point in your wrist. "I don't hate you." He said quietly, as if in defeat.

 

You still didn't meet his gaze. "Pity, hate, what's the difference?"

 

He scoffed. "Don't pity you either. I'm trying to help you, if you'll let me." 

 

You squirmed under his grip, trying to make sense of him--cold one minute and warm the next. Words that contrasted his previous actions. 

 

As always, he picked up on your hesitation right away. "I promise I'll explain, but not tonight. Please, just let me help?" 

 

It took a minute to let the words settle, to hear the sincerity in them. Finally, you nodded. 

 

With your permission given Bucky's lashes dropped, his eyes hooded and somehow hotter though you hadn't quite met his gaze. Gently he moved his flesh hand, wound it into the back of your hair and guided your nose to his throat. 

 

"Scent me." He ordered quietly, so close his chest was nearly brushing against your own with every inhale. 

 

The embarrassment faded away almost instantly as soon as you caught his scent along his throat. Your instincts took over, nose trailing down the taut skin to breathe him in. A quiet, unintentional sound clogged your throat.

 

You pressed harder against his throat, nuzzling into the skin where his neck met shoulder with a deep inhale. 

 

Bucky sucked in a breath, his hand tightening in your hair. "Good girl. Just keep breathing for me. I've got you. Not gonna let anythin' happen to you." 

 

Inside your chest your heart gave a lurch, your hands itching to reach for him and pull him closer. His body trembled above you, a soft curse leaving his lips so quietly you almost missed it.

 

"I don't understand." You squeaked, still buried into his throat. It was easier to be honest, with your face hidden from his intense gaze. 

 

Bucky bumped your jaw with his nose tenderly. "I know." A hard swallow. "I'm sorry." He said no more, his nose skimming from your jaw to the top of your throat and around the shell of your ear as if he were trying to soothe your scattered thoughts.

 

It was clear you wouldn't be getting any answers, not tonight at least. "I'm sorry I slapped you."

 

His chuckle sent a warm breath cascading down the line of your throat. "S'okay. I deserved it." 

 

Gently he pulled back, but you could have sworn you felt his lips brush your hairline as he did. "Okay?"

 

His eyes were brighter now, almost the color of a robin's egg. Clear and soft. 

 

"I'm okay." It sounded uncertain, even to your own ears. 

 

He nudged you over without a word and, further adding to your confusion, settled back against the headrest. 

 

"What are you doing?" Your voice cracked much to your embarrassment. He let his eyes flutter shut, hands folded comfortably over his chest. His lips twitched into a soft smirk. 

 

"Nothing untoward. Just thought I might stay until you fell asleep." 

 

Your throat ran dry, heart giving another lurch in your chest. Something soft and warm settled low in your belly. "Okay." A beat. "Goodnight, Bucky." 

 

He didn't reply until your breathing had evened out and your heart slowed.

 

"Goodnight, Doll." 

Chapter Text

Bucky was gone when you woke, the sheets cool to the touch but his scent still clinging heavily to the thin fabric. After a few minutes you got the courage to roll out of bed, uncertain how Bucky would be around you today. Last night he had been almost...affectionate, but would it carry over to breakfast?

 

He was already in the kitchen, cured meats, granola bars, dried fruit, and two bottles of water neatly laid out on the table. His blue eyes barely glanced at you before settling into his chair. 

 

"Eat. We head out in twenty." 

 

You settled down across from him, attempting to decipher his tone while you picked at your breakfast. 

 

"Is it because of my powers?" You kept your eyes on your plate as you asked. 

 

Bucky let out a slow breath. "No. Steve made it pretty clear you wouldn't use it against the team, or without permission." 

 

"And that's good enough for you?" 

 

"Yes." He answered shortly, a little clipped. 

 

"Then why--"

 

Bucky interrupted. "No more questions. 15 minutes." 

 

His clipped tone sent a bristle of irritation down your own, brows furrowing together. "Oh, so you're back to being an asshole then? Honestly, make up your mind, I'm starting to get whiplash." 

 

He took in a slow, deep, breath before meeting your eyes. His tongue swept out over his bottom lip, shoulders slouching some back into the chair. 

 

"No, I just...can we just save it for the jet? Please? Just focus on getting the hell out of here first?" 

 

You narrowed your eyes at him, ignoring the blossoming of warmth in your tummy--something about the look in his eyes made you feel soft, made you want to give him the benefit of the doubt. 

 

"Fine. But if we get to the jet and you don't explain I'm gonna tear that arm off and beat you with it." 

 

He rolled his eyes, eyes finally dropping back to the table. "Fair enough. Ten minutes." 

 

Then again, maybe you would kill him before you even reached the jet. 

 

Nothing more was said until the two of you met up at the door. Bucky cleared his throat and pulled a knife from his thigh holster, still in the sheath.

 

"Take this," he rumbled, pressing the hilt into your palm. "It's coated in silver. Aim for the throat." 

 

You swallowed hard, slipping the knife into your own empty holster. "You think there are more of them?" 

 

Bucky shook his head. "They usually travel alone. Not many of 'em exist, anyway. But I like to cover the bases. Let's go." 

 

He pulled open the door and stepped out first, his footsteps silent on the forest floor. You followed after him, hoping the walk back wouldn't feel as long as the walk there had. As eager as you were to get to the quinjet, to get answers, you forced it to the back of your mind to focus on your surroundings. 

 

------

The silence prickled at you as time wore on, and Bucky's frustrating behavior--stuck close by you in a way that reminded you all too much of a guard dog. Protective, anxious and defensive. 

 

It was almost impossible not to snap at him, to bite your tongue--especially with his eyes hard as steel, all but glaring at you for the entire walk. 

 

Finally, just as your patience was about to snap, the quinjet came into view. You hurried your steps, eager to break the tense silence. Bucky hurried so that he was in front of you once more, and you could hold back no longer. 

 

"Jesus, can you stop that? The jet is right there!" 

 

Bucky whirled around to face you, his brows furrowed deeply in confusion. 

 

"You're circling me and it's making me anxious!" 

 

His brows furrowed deeper. "I'm just trying to get us to the jet. Can we go now? We could have been there by now." 

 

Your spine bristled at his tone once more, nostrils flaring angrily. "We probably would have been there even sooner if you had stopped--!" 

 

The words were sucked from your throat in a hard slam to your ribcage. Your body slammed into the ground, the world spinning in a haze of color as a snarl ripped through the air. 

 

You kept rolling for what felt like forever, growled breaths panting hot against your face. Thick black fur woven between your fingers, deeply orange eyes and a wide jaw full of teeth. Half human, half wolf. 

 

The two of you had barely come to a stop, the werewolf on top of you, heavy paws pressing down on your chest, before it lunged for your throat. On instinct your hands shot upwards, pressing against its nose and throat to hold it back from you. 

 

Bucky's knife! With no other choice you let one hand drop for the knife, giving the beast just enough time to sink jagged teeth into your shoulder. 

 

White hot pain seared into your skin, setting fire to the muscle beneath and a deep ache into the bone. A cry ripped free from your throat, knife sliding free even as pain wracked through your body. 

 

Blindly you jabbed the silver blade into the heavy body above your own, tearing into you like a goddamn chew toy. Your vision was spotted with fur and blue sky, unable to angle properly to see where you were driving the blade in to the hilt. 

 

Warmth spilled out over your hand, soaking the handle and slackening your grip. It had only been seconds since the attack began, but it felt like a lifetime under the intense pain bursting through your whole body from the bite. 

 

And then it released, a gush of warmth spilling down your chest as the wolf dropped heavily onto your body. Bucky was there a beat later, yanking the furry mass off you with a deep growl. How far had you rolled from the jet? 

 

It had been so quick, just long enough for Bucky to catch up--and he was fast. His voice was muffled as he fell to his knees beside you. 

 

"Shit! 'Mega, fuck, you're gonna be okay." He ripped off one of the straps to his vest and yanked a wad of gauze from a pocket on his pants.

 

His eyes were so intensely blue, clear, that it pulled you in. The moment of calm was gone the second he pressed the guaze to your shoulder hard, tears blurring your vision with a sharp whimper. 

 

"I know, baby. I'm sorry." He wrapped the strap around your shoulder tightly, knotting it with his free hand and his teeth. 

 

"That...seemed kinda personal." You tried to joke, shivering as your adrenaline dropped sharply and suddenly. 

 

Bucky swallowed hard and, with an apologetic look, scooped you into his arms. "It was. I killed her mate." 

 

Your head swam, limbs heavy with exhaustion. Was he running? Or was your vision still blurred with tears and blood loss? 

 

"So if she wanted revenge, why not attack you?"

 

You could hear the ramp to the quinjet just above the thrum of Bucky's heart. Your eyelids drooped, body pulled towards unconsciousness. But he still hadn't answered your question, and he had promised you answers once you were in the jet. 

 

Just as you opened your mouth to call him on it, darkness grabbed you and yanked you under. 

Chapter Text

Hot, scalding pain ripped you from the comfort of dark nothingness. It fireworked out from your shoulder, searing through your limbs like fire. It wrenched a cry from your throat, a heavy weight pressed back against your writhing body. 

 

Your shoulder was wet, your tac suit ripped away to reveal the gnarled flesh beneath. Through the hazy blur of tears you saw Bucky hunched over you, bottle of alcohol in hand. "I know, shh. Gotta clean it. We gotta stitch you up." 

 

Bowling balls were smacking together in your head, making your eyes ache. "Didn't know you could sew, Sergeant." 

 

His eyes met yours briefly. "I'm full of surprises, darlin'." Despite his easy tone his eyes were clouded with worry. 

 

"I'm gonna give you a local. Not gonna lie, it'll hurt like a bitch." 

 

Your teeth grit together against the scream trying to claw it's way up from your chest when he pushed the needle in. After that, it dulled to a muted throb and tug as he started to stitch. 

 

"Talk to me." You panted out through clenched teeth. "Distract me." You pled. 

 

Bucky's tongue swiped out over his bottom lip. "I always seem to say the wrong thing." He sighed. 

 

You kept your eyes on his face, unwilling to look at the mangled flesh of your shoulder. This close you could see his stubble, the sharp jaw underneath and the dimple in his chin. 

 

His lashes were long and dark, fanning out perfectly around those watercolored eyes. "At least you're pretty." You hummed. 

 

Pink dusted over his cheeks. "Think that's the blood-loss talking, sugar." 

 

You huffed a laugh, hissing at the shock of pain that followed it. "I still don't understand. You promised me answers, didn't you?" 

 

His Adam's apple bobbed in a hard swallow. "I did." His eyebrows knitted together, teeth scraping over his bottom lip. Blue eyes remained fixed on the needle as he pushed it into your skin with a steady hand. 

 

The silence seemed to stretch on forever, nothing but the sounds of your breath and his own. "When HYDRA took me, it took them a long time to figure out that the serum made the Alpha in me almost impossible to control. It made me stronger, faster, able to heal quicker....but it made the Alpha more intense, too."

 

You weren't sure where he was going with his story, but you let him speak. Eager to hear whatever he might say. "Bet you gave them a hell of a time." You quipped, just as eager to wipe the crease from between his brows. 

 

Bucky huffed out a soft, barely there laugh. "You could say that. Every time they wiped me, something remained. Something they couldn't scrub away." The crease deepened, his throat flexing around another hard swallow. 

 

"The knowledge that somewhere, I had an Omega. And the serum increased the biological imperative to find her. Nothing was more important. I became obsessed. I just knew if I found her it would be okay, I think. My dad used to say finding your Omega was like seeing the light for the first time, without ever realizing you'd been living in the dark." 

 

There was a strange flutter in your stomach at that, one you chalked up to blood loss and the pulling feeling in your shoulder. 

 

He had stopped talking once more, as if waiting for the words to materialize from the air between you. Finally he shook his head to clear it along with his throat. "They tried every cocktail of drugs they could think of to suppress the ruts, the scent of Omegas. Anything they could think of. None of it worked." 

 

Another stretch of silence. You were afraid to push, to break his train of thought and have him retreat behind his walls once more. 

 

"They kept me frozen longer and longer, gave me more drugs, tried every method of torture they could imagine and then some. They knew I would stop at nothing to find her."

 

He wiped at his cheek with the back of his hand, leaving behind a scarlet streak from cheekbone to chin. Your blood. Your heart lurched in your chest. 

 

"And did you? Find her?" 

 

Bucky shook his head slowly, sucking his bottom lip into his mouth. "No. But, eventually, they told me they had. Pulled me out of cryo, gave me another cocktail of God knows what, and then they told me."

 

His hands began to tremble the smallest amount and, to your surprise, tears began to pool in his eyes. He blinked them away furiously, gritting his teeth audibly against the horrific memory. 

 

"There wasn't much left of her. Could barely tell you what she looked like. Could smell her fear, the blood..." he took in a shaky breath that made your heart squeeze painfully tight in your chest. 

 

"It did the job, snuffed out the need I'd felt like blowing out a candle. I stopped fighting. Stopped letting myself want any Omega. The urge was just...gone." 

 

Subconsciously you reached for his hand, warmth and comfort and every tender and calming emotion you could think of winding tightly in your chest like a ball of yarn. You wound it tighter and tighter, giving no thought to anything but giving him a fraction of the peace he deserved. 

 

Your hand found his flesh one, the metal still busy with the tiny needle. If you'd been more focused it would have been miraculous to see him be so delicate with the appendage and such a small needle. His hand was nearly blazing hot against your own cold one. 

 

With a breath you pushed the ball of yarn from your chest, down your arm and out through your fingers.  

 

Bucky sucked in a sharp, shallow breath as you let it go--a single tear rolling down his cheek, leaving a clean streak through the slash of red. 

 

"D--did you just?" He asked breathlessly, hurrying to tie off the suture. 

 

Before you could answer he gently wiped your shoulder, smeared a glob of ointment over the stitches and settled a bandage over it. 

 

He pushed away completely, his fingers slipping away from yours almost reluctantly. 

 

"You shouldn't....I can't..." He pushed a hand through his hair, refusing to meet your eyes. "You need to rest." 

 

Where his steps had been quiet before now they seemed to rattle and clunk against the floor of the jet until he came to a stop at the doorway to the cockpit. His hands were braced on either side, clutching the frame for a moment. 

 

He turned his head so you could see his profile from where you were stretched out over the gurney. "I'm sorry. Truly." 

 

He left you once more, with more questions than answers and with a hollow feeling in the pit of your stomach. Rejection burst coldly through your body, remorse and guilt eating away at you in a cacophony of sounds. 

 

What was he sorry for? You were the one who had told him you would never use your powers on a teammate against their will, without asking, and you had done just that in an effort to help him. It was you that should be sorry, and you were. 

 

You just weren't sure he would ever let you tell him now. 

Chapter Text

The world around you was dark, illuminated only by dim and flickering bulbs above your head. Cement was wet beneath your feet, each step punctuated with the wet drag and slap of your bare feet over concrete. 

 

Cold chipped away at your bones, clouded your breath and left you shivering from head to toe. Even your hair felt frozen. 

 

Along the corridor, pulled taut in midair was a deep, pulsing red thread. And you felt compelled to follow it, down corridor after corridor, teeth chattering violently together. 

 

Until finally a door screeched open to your left and voices spilled into the corridor. Two armed guards in full HYDRA gear, with a man between them--his body limp, held up only by their hands under his arms, his bare feet dragging against the wet cement. 

 

His head was hanging low, dark hair wet and matted around his head, chest bare, nothing but a thin pair of gray pants to keep the biting cold from him. Across his back were dozens of open, oozing wounds--long, thin lashes that broke deep into the skin. He had been whipped, it seemed. The guard on his right gripped a handful of his hair and yanked his head back so forcefully you could hear his hair rip even though he made no sound of reaction. 

 

As soon as his head was pulled back you gasped sharply, though none of them gave any sign that they had heard you. Familiar eyes stared emptily back, dark cobalt and dim of their usual mischief. Bucky. 

 

Blood was streaked over his face, one cheek swollen so heavily his eye was nearly sealed shut. 

 

The soldier who'd grabbed him, spoke in thick German, a sinister smirk curled upon his pale face. And then they were moving, dragging a clearly drugged and beaten Bucky further and further into the compound. 

 

A screech of a door, another taunt you couldn't translate and then blinding light and a scent so strong you began to gag immediately upon smelling it. Blood. Fear. 

 

Realization hit you like a freight train, ripping through you with violent intensity. Shit! This was a dream, nightmare more specifically. Bucky's nightmare. 

 

The sound that tore out of his throat ripped clean through you, imprinting on your soul in the worst way. He screamed and sobbed openly, brokenly, as they let him drop to the floor. 

 

As much as you didn't want to look, you couldn't stop yourself from doing so. In the center of the room lay a woman, so covered in bruises and blood that you couldn't make out the details of her face. Her throat was ripped open, skin pale, eyes empty of life amidst the syrupy black of her blood. 

 

You heaved once more, Bucky's screams still echoing about the room as if on a loop. It tore into you, slicing your heart and stomach into ribbons. It hurt so acutely, so deeply, that you felt dizzy with it. 

 

Your heart slammed painfully into your ribs, cheeks wet with tears and chest heaving as Bucky crawled weakly over to the pool of blood, to the empty eyed woman. 

 

"Mega," he whined, another sob breaking off the word. "Mega, my 'Mega. Fuck. Mega, please..." 

 

As he began to beg one of the soldiers spoke once more before both tipped their heads back to laugh. Their laughter echoed just as his screams had, as his sobs still were, until your heart beat so hard you thought it would burst out and onto the floor. 

 

You hit the floor hard, breath ragged and heart jack hammering still. Sweat and tears mixed on your cheeks, soaked your hair, sheets tangled between your legs. Your room. 

 

Your entire body trembled with horror, the chasm in your chest cracking open more with every breath. Like a black hole that meant to consume every last drop of something good you could muster. 

 

Even after throwing yourself into a hot shower, pulling on a thick hoodie, socks and sweats, you still felt cold. Hollow. 

 

Your feet carried you down to the communal kitchen, hoping a midnight snack or cup of tea would calm your still racing heart. It had been a week since you'd arrived back from Alaska. 

 

Helen had put you in the cradle, healed the marred and mottled flesh until only a silvery scar was left behind. Steve had apologized endlessly, despite your assertions that he wasn't to blame. He still scheduled you only for very light training, and had made you breakfast every morning since coming back. 

 

But you hadn't seen Bucky, not since you'd piled off the jet, and the nightmare only increased your want to see him. To apologize, and to be sure he was alright. 

 

You pulled out a glass from the cupboard with a sigh, massaging a hand over your still aching chest. 

 

"I'm sorry you had to see that."

 

The voice behind you startled you so badly the glass slipped from your hands and went soaring to the floor. Bucky caught it before it hit, sheepishly offering it back to you. Your throat ran dry, heart picking up speed once more in your chest. Warmth bit at the backs of your eyes. 

 

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to I swear it!" The words came rushing out, shaky and panicked. "And for the jet. I shouldn't have. You have a right to feel whatever way you want. And I'm sorry about..." you couldn't say it, the words crumbling to ash in your throat. 

 

Bucky cocked his head to the side, lips pulled down into a soft frown. "I'm not angry with you, doll." 

 

Something sharp and cold lanced through your chest. "You've been avoiding me all week," you hissed with more venom than you'd intended. 

 

Bucky flinched, setting the glass onto the counter behind you. "Not because I'm angry." His arm brushed against yours as he pulled it back from the glass, a hiss slipping from his lips.

 

"Christ, you're freezing!" He yanked you against his chest suddenly, thick arms wrapping around your shoulders. 

 

A sob wrenched from your chest, face buried into his shoulder. "Bucky, don't." You sobbed, arms hanging limply at your sides. 

 

A tremor ran through him, made his body shiver against yours. "You can't keep doing this. I don't understand what you want from me." You wept. 

 

Bucky swallowed hard and released a long, slow, sigh. "Oh, darlin', don't you know yet?" His flesh hand found your chin, gently guiding your head up until your eyes found his. 

 

There were tears shimmering in his own eyes, so blue they looked like pools you could fall into. He gave you a soft, faltering smile, and tucked a lock of hair behind your ear. 

 

"She wasn't my Omega. It was a cruel trick, one that I fell for. Just didn't realize it until I met you."

 

You gaped openly at him, heart stuttering in your chest and eyes still wet with confused tears, and ones of grief from the awful nightmare Bucky had accidentally pulled you into. Called for you. Never before had you entered someone's head unwillingly, without a plan. 

 

"What?" The word was so quiet you weren't even sure you had said it aloud, but Bucky answered anyway. 

 

"It's you, Y/N. You're my Omega." He confessed at last, let loose the words he had been trying to say since you'd met. 

Chapter Text

Your tongue felt glued to the roof of your mouth, thick and dry as you processed the soft confession. The two of you separated as you studied his face, your body missing his warmth instantly. 

 

Bucky's brows were knitted softly, his hands twitching. He looked nervous, vulnerable. Exposed.

 

"How can you be sure?" The question was breathy, shaky, cracking with emotion. 

 

He bit his lip, pearly white teeth dragging over the plump, pink flesh of his bottom lip. Pink dusted his cheeks, eyes hooded behind thick lashes. 

 

"I thought it was intense then," he shook his head. "It doesn't compare to how I feel near you." 

 

Your heart rolled inside your chest, flopping about like a fish out of water. "Why've you been pushing me away?" 

 

He winced, swallowed hard. "Doll," he sighed heavily, refusing to meet your eyes. The color over his cheeks deepened, "it's been decades since I..." he cleared his throat. "Since I've had a rut." 

 

His explanation settled slowly, your eyes popping wide once it had. Oh. 

 

"Oh!" You squeaked, cheeks hot. "I'm sorry." 

 

Bucky chuckled throatily. "Sugar, you've done nothin' wrong." He assured firmly, leaning back against the counter, both hands gripping it snugly. "I just..." he huffed in annoyance with himself. "Every second I spend near you puts me closer to my rut." He smiled tightly. 

 

"I don't wanna hurt you, 'Mega. Wanna take it slow. Be the Alpha you deserve. If you'll have me, give me a chance." 

 

The closer your studied him, the easier it was to see the self control he was maintaining--the veins in his arms were bulging, muscles tensed, shoulders tight, the damned muscle in the corner of his jaw ticking. And, from the tight, shallow movements of his abdomen--hardly breathing. 

 

You softened, feeling the tension rush from your body like water down a drain. "James, so long without a rut....it'll be painful without an Omega. I could--" 

 

"No," he growled, squeezing his eyes shut tight. "I won't. Please, it's not that I don't want to--" 

 

You shushed him gently, afraid he would work himself into a panic attack. Bucky definitely had a thing about control, and you had to respect it. You had to let him make the choice himself, no matter how badly your Omega wanted to help him. 

 

"Okay, okay. You have my word." Bucky relaxed a little. 

 

"Thank you." 

 

"Do you want me to go now?" You asked gently. He shook his head. 

 

"Can I walk you to your room?"  

 

The words made your stomach flutter with butterflies. "No more pushing me away?" 

 

He didn't miss a beat, offering you his flesh hand. "You're willing to be patient, to wait for me?" 

 

Your hand fit easily into his, "I got a feeling you're worth it, James." 

 

The walk fell into comfortable silence, Bucky's thumb tracing soft patterns over the back of your hand. "M'sorry I've been such a jerk." 

 

You shrugged a shoulder. "S'okay, not the first brutish Alpha I've dealt with." You teased, nudging his side softly. 

 

This softer, sweeter, more vulnerable side to Bucky was a pleasant relief from the standoffish prick he had been. The walk ended too soon, your stomach dropping as you approached your door. 

 

As soon as you had, however, a thought struck you quick as lightning. "Wait here." You commanded Bucky, slipping inside quickly and shutting the door in his face. You opened it again a scarce moment later, dread sinking like a stone in your stomach. 

 

The excitement you'd felt deflated quickly with nerves. "Uhm...I thought this might help." You stammered, twisting the fabric of the dark gray shirt between your fingers. 

 

Before he could look at it fully you shoved it into his hands before you could talk yourself out of it, cheeks burning hotly. "It's my shirt." You explained in a rush. 

 

When he said nothing your cheeks burned even hotter. "Sorry, I'm sorry. That's not helpful at all is it? You don't want--" you reached out once more for the fabric, Bucky jerking it behind his back quickly.

 

"I want it." His eyes fluttered shut, his lips twitching softly at the corners. The shirt behind his back would, absolutely, help calm his rut, but it might also be the catalyst for it. "Thank you." 

 

His eyes met yours tenderly, the sincerity in them warming you from the inside out. "You're welcome." 

 

Neither of you moved, locked into an intense staring contest in the darkened hallway. Bucky's eyes flickered down to your lips, tongue swiping out to wet his own. 

 

Slowly his flesh hand came up, your shirt in his left, and brushed the backs of his knuckles tenderly over your cheek. You leaned into the touch, pressing a soft kiss to the inside of his wrist. 

 

His breath caught in the small space between you, guilt twisting your stomach in fear that you were pushing too far. But Bucky stepped closer, as close as possible without touching you more than he already was. 

 

Teasing both himself and you, his parted lips very nearly brushed against your own. Warm breath made them tingle, every muscle in your body begging you to arch into him. 

 

"Slow," you rasped, throat tight, nearly shivering from the warmth radiating from his body. His chest rumbled in what sounded like a deep, pleased, purr. 

 

Reluctantly you stepped back, letting his hand fall away from your cheek. You bit back a needful whine. If he wanted slow, you could give him that. 

 

He mirrored you, taking a step back with a warm smile. "Goodnight, doll." 

 

Another step back, though his eyes stayed on you. 

 

Your stomach gave a nervous twist. "Alpha?" 

 

Internally, you cursed, not meaning to test his self control. Bucky stopped, head cocked to the side curiously, though there was no mistaking the flicker of heat in his eyes. 

 

"Yes, Omega?" He purred soothingly. You downcast your eyes, shyness overtaking you. 

 

You weren't sure, exactly, what you wanted to ask, but you felt the need for reassurance. The silence didn't last long, Bucky reading you as easily as if your thoughts were stamped across your forehead. 

 

"I'm scared too, doll. But I meant it. I know you're it for me." He took a deep breath. "This...is..." he huffed a laugh. "It's more than...I just want to experience it all with a clear head. I want to..." 

 

Your heart skipped a beat in anticipation. 

 

"Cherish it." He finished softly. 

 

Butterflies erupted once more, low in your belly. 

 

"Okay." A beat. "But you do want to kiss me, don't you?" 

 

Heat flashed in his eyes once more, tongue swiping out to wet his bottom lip. "Every goddamn incha you." He growled. "And I will, if you let me. Until you're trembling, begging me to stop." He swallowed hard. "But not tonight." 

 

Your thighs clenched at the heated look in his eyes. "Not tonight." You echoed, finally opening your door once more. 

 

"Sweet dreams." You murmured, shutting the door with a soft click. 

 

Another wave of heat rushed through you at his response, just barely audible. "You have no idea." It was punctuated with a soft groan that would surely replay on loop. 

 

As you settled into bed you realized Bucky wouldn't be the only one practicing self control. It would be worse for him, no question about that, but you would have to be mindful not to push him into his rut more quickly. Even so, it was only a matter of time and, judging by the state of him, it wouldn't be long. 

Chapter Text

You didn't see Bucky the following morning and, while that wasn't unusual, it knotted your stomach just a little with disappointment. Hoping he was okay you had gone about your day as normal--though with an added eagerness to see the brunet super soldier. Your soldier. 

 

Had your sweater kicked his rut into action? Was he sweating, panting, fucking into his own hand with his nose buried in your shirt? That image had kept you going well past morning, refusing to be tucked away into the back of your head. 

 

It was still in mind by noon, when you had bumped into one of the many employees from one of the countless floors. Theo, you thought his name was. 

 

He was tall, average build, and you had no idea what his job actually was. Sure, you had seen him around and made the necessary small talk. Beyond that? Nada. His name, for all you knew, might not even be Theo. 

 

The guy was smiling brightly, babbling on excitedly about some new Stark tech or some such. Your mind was still miles away, tortured sweetly by gray blue eyes and a lilting Brooklyn accent. 

 

You had spaced out just a little too much, perhaps, and he had caught on. His hand came up to touch your arm gently, drawing you back to the present. 

 

"You alright, Y/N?" 

 

Embarrassed heat flooded your cheeks, mouth dropping open to apologize when it happened. There was a loud sound somewhere between a growl and a yell before Theo's arm was forced away from your body---a thick wall of muscle having pushed between you two.

 

Bucky.

 

His gray t-shirt was damp with sweat, his hair tied back into a low bun, hands clenched into fists at his side. He was breathing raggedly, a strong rush of his scent making you unsteady for a moment. 

 

Your throat ran dry from both his scent and the dominant, protective way he was guarding you. Theo quirked a brow and stepped back, clearing his throat. A deep growl rumbled from Bucky's chest, his body rigid but for the vibrations from his voice. 

 

Theo cleared his throat again. "Bucky, are you---" 

 

He was cut off by another growl, one that had your panties soaked within seconds. It was claiming, possessive, and no doubt to do with his very imminent rut. 

 

Shit.

 

Slowly you moved around Bucky and plant yourself between them--facing Bucky, your back to Theo. He didn't even glance at you, so far as you could tell. His eyes were deep gray, hardly any blue in them. Like storm clouds in the heart of winter. 

 

"Alpha," you purred as steadily as you could, palms planted softly on his chest. 

 

His eyes were pinned on Theo, keeping the other Alpha pinned to the wall with his cold stare. "Get behind me, 'Mega." He commanded through clenched teeth, the muscle in his jaw ticking with every word. 

 

But you didn't back down, couldn't. Not when Bucky so clearly thought that Theo was trying to make a move on his mate. On you. As hot as it was to have your alpha claim you, you knew Bucky wouldn't actually want to hurt Theo. At least, not without the powerful surge of hormones that were no doubt coursing through his system. 

 

Slowly, soothingly, you nuzzled into the tense line of his throat near his scent gland. "James, it's okay. I'm yours."

 

Bucky's breath hitched so quietly you almost missed it. "He was touching you." He seethed, still poised and ready to fight for you. 

 

Your heart lurched, warmth pooling low in your stomach. It was intoxicating; the dark look in his eyes, the impressive stance, his scent. Good god his scent. 

 

"He's not a threat to you." You promised, lips brushing against the pulse in his throat. When he still didn't noticeably relax you growled, nipped his neck hard enough to make him pay attention. 

 

"Alpha, look at me!" The demand was clear, tone brooking no room for argument. His eyes found yours in a flash, quickly scanning over your face. Studying you. You felt his deep inhale against your palms, and the pleased rumble that followed. 

 

Your tried to swallow around your dry throat, Bucky's attention fully on you now. On the flush of your cheeks, the quickened beats of your heart, the slight tremble in your bottom lip. 

 

"Keep your fuckin hands to yourself, squint." He growled to Theo, his eyes still on you. "And get the fuck out of my sight." 

 

Theo cowered like the lesser Alpha he was, proverbial tail between his legs. "Yes, Sergeant Barnes." 

 

His voice croaked, the sound of his footsteps skittering away quickly down the hall before Bucky could change his mind. 

 

Bucky took hold of your hips, then, gently pushing your body into the wall. His tongue swept out to wet his bottom lip, another purr rumbling his chest. "That was risky, 'Mega." 

 

The words were chastising, but his tone was all rich silk. Tingles burst up your spine at it, heart kicking up another notch. 

 

"Getting between you, or biting you?" You squeaked.

 

Bucky's eyelashes fluttered as he took another breath. "Both." 

 

His hands found your wrists, long fingers circling around them before tugging them away from his chest. He stepped closer, the hard length of his body pressing into you until you shivered. 

 

Warm breath fanned your throat as he nuzzled into it, his open mouth brushing against your skin. "Fuck." He cursed, tongue tracing over your fluttering pulse. It stuttered under the wet slide of his tongue, fingers gripping the back of his shirt to remain steady. 

 

"And what do you call this?" You sassed breathily, your nipples aching points under your bra. Bucky groaned softly. "Oh, this is risky." He pressed a kiss to your shoulder.

 

You bit back a whimper. "Alpha..." words failed you beyond the one, the hazy warmth of lust rolling up from your toes making it difficult to think beyond his body against yours, his lips on your skin. 

 

Bucky shuddered, open mouth trailing hot, wet kisses up your throat. "God, the things that does to me." His eyes clenched shut, nose bumping your jaw tenderly. "M'sorry, doll." 

 

His flesh hand cupped your cheek, his eyes pinched shut sorrowfully. "Lost myself for a moment." He swallowed roughly, forehead pressing against your own. 

 

"Shh, Alpha. It's okay. You haven't done anything wrong." You leaned into his touch, pressing a kiss into his palm. 

 

He swallowed roughly once more. "I should leave, doll. I'm...I don't have long now." 

 

His dominance from before was all but gone, replaced by a softer and more reluctant Alpha. He didn't want to let you go. And, if you were truly honest, you didnt want him to let you go either. But he had asked for slow, and you were determined to follow through.  

 

"I know. That's okay too." You reassured him. "It's okay, Bucky. I'm yours, and I'll be waiting for you. You do owe me a proper date, after all." 

 

Bucky sighed softly, thumb brushing over your cheek. "As soon as it's over." He promised in return, his eyes falling to your lips longingly. 

 

His hand fell away from your cheek as he stepped back, his brows pinching together in a soft frown. After what felt like an eternity he finally turned away and began to force himself down the hall. You were impressed with his level of self control, considering how badly you'd wanted him to take you right then and there. Slow pace be damned. History between you be damned, too. 

 

Still, you kept your back to the wall as your eyes followed him down the hall. Just before he reached the elevator he paused, swiveling back around to face you. 

 

"Omega?" 

 

Your head cocked to the side curiously. "You look beautiful today." He answered simply, a boyish grin tugging at his lips. A blush warmed your cheeks, your lips seemingly stuck together by the compliment. 

 

He didn't seem to be expecting a response, though his chest puffed a little at the coloring of your cheeks. With one last longing look he slipped into the elevator as you let your head fall back against the wall with a shaky exhale. 

Chapter Text

It didn't take long for Bucky's rut to set in--his scent seemed to fill the entire tower, beckoning to you like a siren would a ship. The thought and smell of him were enough to send you careening into an early heat, forced to barricade yourself into your living quarters. 

 

Natasha dropped off a wide array of snacks, water, and a tshirt that could only belong to Bucky on the second day. When you'd lifted a brow at her she merely shrugged. "Bucky wanted to be sure you were taken care of."

 

She didn't stay long, your scent making her nose wrinkle. 

 

The rest of your heat seemed to drag on and on, painful and lonely. 

 

On the ninth day without seeing Bucky you were surprised when Friday's voice filled your room.

 

"Your presence is requested in conference room 43C, Miss L/K."

 

Your eyes rolled in annoyance, already melancholy about being sent on a potential mission. More time without seeing Bucky. 

 

Still you dutifully made your way there, dressed in black leggings and the shirt Bucky had passed along to you. The conference room, however, was dark when you arrived. Pitch dark, can't see the hand in front of your face kind. 

 

Before you could open your mouth to ask Friday if she had misspoke, lights twinkled to life throughout the room---dozens of white fairy lights all strung up from the ceiling and around the walls. White golden droplets of light cast just enough glow to make out a pile of blankets and pillows, two dome covered plates and a beautiful bouquet of sunflowers and roses. 

 

Your breath caught as a figure shifted out of the dark, a familiar form coming into view. "I hope it's not too much, doll." He blushed, tucking a lock of hair nervously behind his ear. 

 

"Was hoping you'd still let me give you that date. Have dinner, maybe watch a movie?" 

 

You swallowed around the dryness of your throat. "James...this is beautiful. You did all this?" 

 

He nodded, stepping carefully over to you. "M'sorry, for acting like a total knothead with Theo. I was out of line." 

 

You shook your head. "I told you, it's okay." Sensing he was still nervous you stepped forward, just shy of touching him. "I kinda liked it, but I think I like this even more." 

 

His chest rumbled with a content purr. "Yeah? It's not too much?" 

 

It was your turn to blush. "No. I think it's perfect. Thank you, James." 

 

Boldly you hiked up onto tiptoe to give his clean shaven cheek a kiss. It worked to break the tension, Bucky gently tugging your hand to lead you towards the dome covered plates. 

 

Underneath yours was your favorite food which made you quirk a brow at him curiously. You'd never told him your favorite food. 

 

He shrugged innocently. "A little spider might have helped." 

 

You smirked a little at that. "Two favors in one week? Did you have to give up a kidney?" 

 

He barked out a surprised laugh. "No, those are still intact....well, as far as I know. She did threaten to castrate me with a pair of safety scissors, though." 

 

Dinner with Bucky was surprisingly easy, conversation flowing naturally over a variety of topics. Once the food was gone the pair of you shifted to the pile of pillows and blankets, a movie projected onto the wall in front of you, courtesy of Friday. 

 

Nerves settled in as you settled next to Bucky, his right arm curled around your waist gentlemanly. Politely. Proper.

 

This close it was impossible not to smell him, to feel the warmth seeping from him and into you. It filled you with excited, nervous energy. So much so that you couldn't even focus on the movie Friday was playing. 

 

Too focused on the sharp cut of his jaw, the hard planes of his abdomen, the press of his thick thigh against your own. Heat pooled low in your belly, spine tingling with unspoken urges. 

 

"What're you fretting about, 'Mega?" 

 

His voice so close to your ear sends shivers down to your toes, glues your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Pink blossoms over your cheeks in embarrassment, eyes lowered to avoid his piercing gaze. 

 

"I'm not sure I should say." You finally squeak, clearing your throat in hopes of steadying your voice. 

 

Bucky's head chocks in adorable confusion, forcing more of an answer from you. 

 

"I just...." your face must be several shades of red by now. "I can't help wondering if you're gonna kiss me. I know we're taking this slow but we both just had our cycles and you're really close to me and you smell so good. " The last comes out more of a whine. 

 

A warm hand finds the back of your neck, hand splayed so his thumb can push your chin up gently until your eyes are on his. 

 

"You sure?" 

 

As sweet as the question is, it's also frustrating. It's the emotion that wins out. "I swear to God if you don't cut this tension and kiss--" 

 

His lips slot over yours, capturing them in a soft, wet kiss. You sigh into it, body arching towards the warmth of his body in a silent plea for more. 

 

He gives it easily, metal hand finding your hip with a squeeze as his tongue slides over your lips. They part with a gasp as his tongue curls around your own. 

 

It awakens every cell in your body, all firing off one after the other like microscopic fireworks. Your teeth nip his bottom lip, sucking it into your mouth. 

 

The soft moan it pulls from him turns the soft heat within you into a blazing inferno. His kiss shifts into something harder, more passionate, unbridled, both of you touching wherever you can reach. 

 

He's the first to pull away, though his brows pinch together as if the separation is painful. His breath is ragged, eyes dark with unrestricted want. 

 

His Adam's apple bobs with a hard swallow, open mouth brushing against yours to silence the whine trying to escape you. "Slow." He rasps, though his lips brush against your own again. 

 

Your lower lip juts into an unintentional pout. "Are you trying to sexually frustrate me to death?" 

 

Sharp teeth nip your pouting lip gently, his nose burrowing into the curve of your throat soothingly. "You're not the only one, sweetheart. But we need--"

 

"Slow," you interrupt with a soft sigh. "I know. I'm sorry. You're just so damn tempting." 

 

He growls lowly at that. "Me? You're one to talk, wearing those tight leggings and my shirt. So damn soft, n'sweet. Mine." His lips brush against your throat without a hint of innocence. 

 

A shiver racks your body in response. "That's not fair, Alpha." You whine, nails pressing into his abs through his shirt. Two could play that game. 

 

"Just like it wouldn't be fair if I told you how wet I was right now. How I'm gonna touch myself later tonight, wearing nothing but this shirt." 

 

Bucky gasped, whimpering when your lips brushed against his neck. 

 

"Fuck." He chokes the word out on another ragged breath. 

 

When you're certain he looks appropriately wrecked you force yourself back, creating space between the two of you. A proud smirk on your lips. 

 

Dark lashes flutter shut with a sigh. "That was..." 

 

You arch a brow at him. "Fair, for what you've been doing to me." 

 

His eyes darken, tongue swiping out to wet his bottom lip. "I'll get you back for that, sugar." He purrs darkly in promise. 

 

Feeling brave, emboldened, sounding like you aren't soaked you throw him a wink. "I'm counting on it, Sergeant."