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Shake It Off

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The past year had been rough. The group really took a hit when Tony and Steve broke up. Half sided with Tony and the other half sided with Steve some didn’t even take sides but now they were all coming back together as a friend group. Although that didn’t mean they all (excluding Tony and Steve) didn’t remain friends, Clint and Natasha remained together and Wanda and Vision continued just with a difference of opinion on the matter.

The reason the two broke up was because Bucky Barnes, Steve’s childhood friend. Steve would drop anything and I mean anything if Bucky called or texted. Tony finally gave Steve an ultimatum, him or Bucky. Steve chose Bucky. It helped that Tony had cheated on Steve prior with Pepper and Steve had taken him back. Steve had been willing to forgive but he refused to give up Bucky.

Not two months after Bucky and Steve became a couple. Steve had always been in love with Bucky and Bucky had always been in love with him but the two morons didn’t realize it. When Steve finally got the courage to tell his best friend in freshman year of college, Bucky started dating a girl named Dot then enlisted in the army and that’s when Steve met Tony. Steve wanted to join him but the army wasn’t accepting 5’4, 95 pound men with two pages of health issues. So Steve wrote Bucky letters, called him when he could and tried as hard as he could to remain in contact when Bucky was overseas.

Presently this is the healing of friendships, the end of civil war as Clint called it. They all decided to meet at Thor’s house. Thor was neutral ground. The entire group had all arrived except Steve and frankly everyone was nervous for the entrance. Steve and Bucky were currently driving to Thor’s house had been stuck in traffic. Bucky sat in the passenger seat, hair pulled back and red long sleeves pulled down over his metal arm. Steve drove tensely, as he worried about the reaction from the others and Bucky could see his tiny tense frame.

“I can’t believe I had to become your boyfriend to be able to meet your other friends” Bucky teased to help relieve Steve’s stress

“Are you kidding? You never wanted to meet them” Steve snorted back with a smile

“You’re right. I wanted you all to myself” Bucky grinned back causing the blond to smile with a blush dusting his cheeks as he parked in front of Thor’s house. Steve looked at the building nervously and Bucky grabbed his chin “Hey, it’ll be fine. If not we can ditch and still make the ten o’clock showing of Star Trek: Beyond”

Steve smiled at that and leaned over kissing the brunette “I love you”

“I know” Bucky smiled and Steve pulled back to look at him properly

“Did you just Han Solo me?” Steve snorted and Bucky just smirked.

  -

Tony stood next to Rhodey, nursing a scotch when they walked in. Not only Steve but Bucky as well.

“Tony what?” Rhodey questioned at the sudden appalled look at Tony’s face

“Oh my god” Tony scoffed “I feel like I’m in a teen drama”

“What?” Rhodey was about to turn around when he stopped him

“Don’t make it obvious” Tony said and the man just gave him an long suffering look “My ex-man just brought his new boyfriend”

“What?” Rhodey did turn around this time to turn and look at Steve who was introducing Bucky to Thor. Bucky’s eyes caught Tony’s momentarily and his arm snaked around Steve’s slim waist before returning to the introductions with a happy blushing Steve.

Nat snorted watching the interaction and nudged Clint who also saw “Tonight is going to be fun”

“I’ll see if Jane has any popcorn” Clint replied as he took a sip from his glass

“Bucky would totally kick Stark’s ass though” Natasha mused and Clint hummed in agreement before the pair moved to greet Steve and Bucky.

“I get why Steve drools over you” Natasha teased and Steve blushed slightly causing Bucky to grin

“Nah. I’m really the lucky one” Bucky replied with a smile down at Steve and Clint pointed a finger at Steve

“Keep him” Clint stated

“I plan to” Steve replied with another blush, looking up at his boyfriend. He couldn’t stop getting flustered but Bucky did that to him.

-

Tony was the next to approach the group after Steve had excused himself to the restroom “Well you must be Bucky”

Bucky turned his gaze to the older man and nodded, shaking Tony’s offered hand with a tight smile. “You must be Tony”

“It’s about to go down” Clint whispered to Natasha

“Well this isn’t awkward of anything” Tony stated crudely “So were you two fucking before or after we broke up?”

“You’re one to talk about cheating” Bucky snapped back, instantly going on the defense for Steve.

“Oh Stevie told all my secrets did he?” Tony quirked his eyebrow

“Listen I’m not doing this. This isn’t what Steve would want” Bucky said and started to turn away from Tony

“Okay well I hope you enjoy my sloppy seconds, Barnes. He does better on his knees” Tony mocked and Bucky stopped

“Okay I tried” Bucky muttered before turning around and slugging Tony right in the face. Tony stumbled back and  touched his jaw before going to launch himself at Bucky but was stopped by Thor. Clint grabbed Bucky, preventing him from advancing towards Tony and Steve chose this moment to come out of the bathroom

“What the heck is going on?” Steve asked taking in the scene before him.

“Your boyfriend just attacked me” Tony snapped

“I wouldn’t have if you’d learn some damn manners” Bucky snapped back at Tony

“Language” Steve reminded

“What can’t bear to know how Steve screamed my name in bed?“ Tony responded and Bucky struggled against Clint only stopping when Steve raised his hands

“Enough” Steve stopped the two and reached up to put a small hand on Bucky’s shoulder so he would calm down “Come on Bucky we’re leaving”

Bucky relaxed under Steve’s touch but didn’t stop glaring daggers at Tony and Clint cautiously released him. Steve led Bucky out sending an apologetic look at his friends before leaving with his boyfriend. Bucky was fuming as they got in the car. The car ride back to their house was a silent one. Once they got home and inside Bucky turned to Steve.

“Did you really have sex that much?” Bucky asked and Steve looked at him.

“No. We only slept together once or twice and we never went all the way“ Steve replied rubbing his arm in discomfort, causing Bucky to relax a little and Bucky pulled the smaller man into a hug.

“I wasn’t going to stand there and let him talk about you like that” The brunette grumbled and Steve hugged him back

“Thank you” Steve murmured and pressed a kiss to his metal arm. Something Steve had taken to doing, this had helped Bucky knowing that Steve didn’t find it odd “I’m sorry meeting my friends was a bust”

“Getting to punch Tony in the face was worth it” Bucky remarked causing Steve to chuckle

-

The next morning, Bucky was off to work at the VA and Steve stayed home finishing up his painting. Steve was two hours into it when he heard the doorbell ring and wiped off his hands the best he could before answering the door only for it to be none other than Tony Stark.

“Before you say anything, I’m here to make peace” Tony stated his hands up in mock surrender “Is Bucky boy here?”

“He’s at work” Steve crossed his arms “Natasha told you to come apologize didn’t she?”

“That’s not the point. The point is I’m here to make amends and yada yada yada” Tony replied “Now can I come in or are we standing on the doorstep for the rest of the morning?”

Steve stepped aside letting Tony into the house and leading him to the kitchen.

“I admit I acted like a dick” Tony admitted “and I’m sorry. To prove how sorry I am I will hold the next friend get together. No fighting. I promise”

Steve watched Tony, looking for sincerity in his words before sighing and nodding “Okay”

-

Bucky got home from the VA later that night finding Steve cooking dinner and came up behind him, enveloping Steve in his arms. “Hey” Bucky murmured into Steve’s neck and the blond smiled

“Hey. How was your day?” Steve questioned as he leaned back against the veteran.  

“It was good but I wish I’d spent it with you” Bucky murmured jokingly but he did actually mean it.

“Nerd” Steve blushed and Bucky grinned

“Punk” Bucky pressed a soft kiss to the back of Steve’s neck with a hum “How was your day?”

“Tony dropped by” The blond replied and Bucky automatically tensed “He came to apologize for the other night and offered to host the next friend gathering”

“Bullshit” Bucky muttered “He is bullshitting you”

“Language” Steve reprimanded “I don’t want the others to suffer just because Tony and I can’t get along. We are all adults here. That can work things out”

“He is still an asshole” Bucky stated as he tightened his hold on Steve’s slim waist and they stayed like that while the pasta cooked. Bucky held tight and Steve simply leaned back into the soft embrace, enjoying the cool metal on his skin.

Bucky was honorably discharged due to his loss of arm during an explosion; he received a purple heart and other metals to go along. Bucky still recalls in vivid detail when he first saw Steve after the accident, he was dressed in Bucky’s sweater, his eyes and nose were red from crying. The blond had hugged him so tight he couldn’t breathe but Bucky didn’t really feel like he came home until he was in Steve’s brittle arms.  After that Steve didn’t leave his side not once, even when they said visiting hours were up Steve refused to leave and finally the nurses allowed him to stay in the room because Bucky didn’t have anyone except Steve.

“Doll you’re burning the noodles” Bucky murmured and Steve opened his eyes turning off the stove.

“Set the table?” Steve prompted and Bucky nodded, pressing a kiss to Steve’s cheek before setting the table while the blond drained the noodles and put sauce on them. Bucky then noticed something was cooking in the oven.

“What’s in the oven?” Bucky asked as he filled their glasses of water and Steve smiled

“Plum Pie” Steve said proudly

“You know I love you right?” Bucky grinned and Steve hummed in response as they both sat down for dinner. The two chatted through dinner until the oven dinged signally the pie was ready and Steve jumped up to bring it out of the oven.

“Smells good” Bucky chimed from his seat at the table

“Stay where you are. I know your tricks” Steve pointed at him

“What are you implying ya punk?” Bucky acted mock offended

“Oh sure Mr.scoop-out-center-of-apple-pie” Steve snorted as he let the pie cool then returned to his seat and Bucky just broke out into laughter. Once they finished eating Bucky started on dishes while Steve went to check his blood pressure. When he came back into the kitchen, he just watched Bucky wash and dry the dishes.

After coming back from the army, Bucky used domestic things like washing dishes as a way to help him feel grounded and Steve just wanted to do whatever helped Bucky. The first few months of Bucky back were hell, even now he will wake up in the middle of the night or have a violent flashback. With the help of Steve and other veterans, Bucky was doing a hell of a lot better. That’s why Bucky decided to work at the VA, to help people like him get better and maybe because everyone there gets it.

Steve cut two pieces of Plum Pie for the both of them and moved to the couch waiting for Bucky. The brunette followed Steve to the couch and sat by him picking up the plate. Once they had both finished, Steve grinned before slipping into Bucky’s shirt with him “What are you doing babydoll?” Bucky asked amused looking at the petite man

“ ’m cold” Came Steve’s muffled replied causing the brunette to shake his head fondly

Chapter Text

About a week later Tony hosted the reboot of the reunite friend gathering and a cold front had rushed in earlier that week. That’s why Steve was currently wrapped in multiple layers courtesy of Bucky as they drove to the party.

“I don’t need this many layers” Steve mumbled as they drove and Bucky snorted

“Oh right that’s why you always end up with my coat at the end of the night” Bucky replied and Steve huffed in response causing the brunette to smile. When they finally parked outside Tony’s mansion, Bucky grabbed Steve’s chin placing a soft kiss to the smaller mans lips “Don’t worry babydoll”

“Like that’ll happen” Steve mumbled and kissed Bucky one last time before the couple climbed out of the car. Bucky took Steve’s smaller hand into his as they walked to the front

“Your hands are freezing” Bucky commented as he tried to warm them up “Where are your gloves?”

“I got you to warm them up don’t I?” Steve hummed in response

“That you do. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t wear your gloves” Bucky replied and rang the doorbell, they were ushered in by someone working there.

Steve led Bucky towards Sam tapping his left shoulder “On your left”

Sam whirled around “Oh you’re pushing it”

Steve just grinned “Sam you remember Bucky” And the greetings went on until most of their friends had already interacted with the pair when Thor decided to bring up what the group called ‘The Incident’

“Steve never told you?” Nat questioned and Bucky looked at Steve with a raised eyebrow

“No he didn’t” Bucky replied and Steve’s eyes were avoiding Bucky’s “What is ‘The Incident’?”

“Sam, Thor, Steve and I decided to run a 5k” Natasha started with a wicked look in her eye “Steve refused to stop for water or for breaks and demanded to keep pace with us. Immediately after he past the finish line, Steve collapsed on the ground and had to be air lifted to the hospital”

“Oh really?” Bucky narrowed his eyes at Steve, not going to unleash his wrath in public but knew that Steve would understand he was in big trouble when they got home.

“When we got to the hospital the doctor said he almost collapsed a lung” Sam chimed in and Steve shot him a glare

“Oh really?” Bucky repeated but louder this time and his eyes seemed to get even more narrowed. Steve chanced a peek at Bucky and winced at the heat coming his way.

“Oh and don’t forget while he was in the hospital he tried to fight one of the doctors for harassing the nurses” Nat smirked

“Oh really?” Bucky repeated for the third time, even louder and with even more narrowed eyes. This time he crossed his arms and Steve really knew he was in trouble.  

“Don’t forget about the time Steve-“Sam started when Tony made his way over to the pair. Bucky automatically moved his anger at Steve to the back of his mind and wrapped a protective arm around Steve’s waist.  

“Glad you two could make it. Wine? Beer? Whisky?” The billionaire offered

“No thank you” Steve replied with a nod to Tony and Bucky shook his head at the offer

“Oh you’re no fun” Tony said, taking a sip of his own alcoholic beverage. Bucky tightened his grip around Steve’s waist and gave Tony a blank look while Steve squeezed Bucky’s hand on his hip. “So what DO you do for fun? Besides steal other people’s boyfriends”

“What is your issue?” Bucky asked angrily “You were the one that broke Steve’s heart. He is my best friend in the entire world if anyone has the right to be mad it’s me”

“If I remember correctly we broke up because of you” Tony replied, pointing a finger at Bucky

“Tony” Steve spoke sternly “Enough”

“Oh Steve come on let a man let off some steam” Tony slurred, clearly having had a lot to drink

“Back off” Steve snapped “Leave Bucky alone. It’s not his fault I left you. I left you because you’re a rich, playboy that doesn’t care about anybody but himself. Whenever I needed you, you weren’t there, too busy at some party.  When I had nothing I had Bucky. He is the best man I have ever known and I will stand by him no matter what so if you’re going to be angry at anyone be angry at me”

“Okay Okay Back to your corners. I mean it Stevie. Tony you’re drunk and you’ll regret this in the morning” Clint said standing between the two “I think we all had enough excitement for one night, why don’t we call it a night?”

Steve stilled glared but nodded “Let’s go” he murmured to Bucky and the brunette happily led his boyfriend out of the house.

Once at home with the door shut, Bucky pulled Steve into a hug and held him for a minute or two. “Don’t think I forgot about all the dumb shit you did and didn’t tell me about”

Steve groaned “I was fine” he murmured

“Oh? Fine? In the hospital fine? Why didn’t you tell me?” Bucky asked

“I didn’t want to waste my phone call with you telling you about how I landed in the hospital and you were already stressed enough being in the army n stuff” Steve mumbled looking down at his feet while Bucky crossed his arms

“Steve you could have died. What the hell were you thinking? Running for 5 kilometers seemed like a good idea to you when you can’t run one without an inhaler break?” Bucky exclaimed “You little punk. Oh and getting in a fight with your doctor? Really Steve do I have to explain why that was a dumb idea?”

“He had no right to be treated those nurses that way” Steve started and Bucky cut him off

“Babydoll that’s not the point. The point is you could have killed yourself. How do you think I would feel coming back to find out you had gotten yourself killed?” Bucky asked with a frown

“I’m sorry Buck but I can’t just sit around wrapped in bubble wrap” Steve replied with a frown across his own lips and Bucky let out a sigh

“I know doll. I know but would it kill you to be careful at least?” Bucky said, lifting Steve’s face and looking him in his eyes.

“Maybe” Steve mumbled and Bucky rolled his eyes

“Punk” Bucky scoffed and Steve beamed at the brunette

“Nerd” Steve replied leaning up to kiss him and Bucky kissed him back

“If you think we are done talking about this you’re wrong” Bucky murmured into the kiss and Steve made a small agreement noise but kept kissing him…

Chapter Text

1.5 Years Ago

“I just need some time alone right now okay?” Steve replied wiping his eyes as he walked out of Tony’s house. Steve had found out that Tony was sleeping with Pepper not two minutes ago and need some space. What he needed was Bucky but Bucky was overseas serving his country. Steve got into his car, wiping his eyes furiously and drove back to his apartment when his phone rang. Looking down it was the number of the military phone Bucky called for.

“Hey Bucky!” Steve answered mustering his best happy voice

“What’s wrong? Why are you crying?” Bucky asked automatically being able to tell by Steve’s voice.

“Buck please. It’s nothing” Steve murmured “I don’t want to waste my time talking to you with stupid drama”

“C’mon Steve it’s me” Bucky growled and Steve couldn’t take it. Trying to lie to Bucky was never something he was good at.

“Tony was cheating on me with Pepper” Steve answered and sniffed “I just found out and I don’t know what to do Buck. I’m so angry and hurt.. I just…” Steve spent the good three hours they had telling him everything and Bucky was there to comfort him the hold way.

-

“You took him back?!” Buck growled angrily over the phone “Steve that is the dumbest- okay not the dumbest-“

“Buck he deserves a second chance” Steve replied. Steve had only taken Tony back in hopes it would get better and maybe because it hurt just a little less having someone. It was hard enough that Bucky was overseas and didn’t return his feelings but as they say you accept the love you think you deserve

“No he doesn’t. Dammit Steve can’t you see you deserve someone so much better” Bucky replied passionately and Steve sighed

“Well maybe I need corrective lenses or you do” Steve attempted to lighten the mood and he heard the brunette sigh.

-

Tony growled angrily as Steve pulled away once he heard his phone ring “It’s Bucky!” Steve beamed and went off into the other room to talk to him. Tony was aware of Steve’s feelings but this was ridiculous. Anytime Bucky called, Steve dropped anything or when he got a letter from Bucky he spent the entire day replying. Not to mention Steve would go into long stories about what Bucky and he used to do as kids or Bucky loves science conventions or Bucky missed the new Star Trek trailer. It went on and on. The blond thought about nothing else.

1 year ago

“Steven Rogers?” The man standing in front of Steve’s apartment door

“Yes” Steve replied a cold sense of dread creeped up his spine and his tiny frame started to shake involuntarily.

“James Buchanan Barnes saved my life and I came to personally tell you. He was injured in an explosion and his injuries have cost him his arm. They are very severe and since you’re the only family he has Mr. Rogers I must ask that your prepare for the worst” The man said and Steve clutched the door frame tightly his world was closing in

“Oh my god” Steve croaked “Bucky..”

-

When Bucky was well enough to transport they got him ready to be transferred to the hospital in Brooklyn to ride out the rest of his recovery. Steve was going to meet them there and sign all the papers for Bucky considering he was in a medically induced coma to help heal. Although the doctors said he should be waking up in a few days.

Steve was a wreck. He was constantly crying from worrying and he was wearing Bucky’s clothes all the time and constantly checking in with the doctor. The army was awarding Bucky with a purple heart and a honorable discharge.

“Tony I’m sorry but I can’t I need to the hospital” Steve said after Tony had come over demanding to be seen but Steve was too busy worrying about Bucky to even think about Tony.

“When will you have time for me? It is always about Bucky” Tony snapped and Steve looked up “I get your friend is hurt but Steve I am your boyfriend and I am supposed to come first… are you wearing his shirt?”

“Please don’t start with this” Steve sniffed, he felt raw. Bucky was struggling to hang onto life and he was sitting here with Tony. He wanted… no he needed to be with Bucky right now. Bucky came first always.

“No Steve we need to have this conversation” Tony stated firmly “You have to pick: Bucky or me?”

“Tony don’t-” Steve started

“I need to know. Do you love him more than me?” Tony insisted

“Yes! Yes I do. I love him more than you. He is the most important person in my life and always will be. Bucky will always come first Tony!” Steve finally shouted after having enough of it

“Well that settles it then” Tony breathed and swiftly left the apartment

-

Steve was crying softly into his hands sitting by Bucky’s bedside. He had just arrived an hour ago and was now settled into the hospital room. He wasn’t crying because of the break up, he was crying because seeing strong Bucky broken in a hospital bed was the worst thing he ever saw. He was wrapped in Bucky’s red long sleeve shirt and he couldn’t stop crying.

The next few days were torture. He got a few calls from Nat and Sam asking what happened but he wasn’t even thinking about the break up. Over the past few days he realized he stopped loving Tony a while ago. He never left the hospital in that time. The nurses couldn’t get him to leave and he ended up sleeping on the uncomfortable recliner.

 

-

Present

The following week Steve came down with the flu resulting in Bucky taking a couple days off to care for him. Steve was currently curled up on the bed with a puke bowl on the night stand and blankets bundling him up watching Star Trek: Beyond which came out on DVD not a week ago. Bucky was making chicken noodle soup in the kitchen for Steve and a sandwich for himself.

“I can’t believe they are still trying to sell the Uhura and Spock thing. Spock clearly is in love with Kirk and it kind of degrades her character” Steve told Bucky as the brunette entered the room while the soup was boiling.

“At least in the original series she knew Spock was off limits” Bucky commented, moving to check Steve’s temperature. “She is still awesome though”

“Can we watch the Tribbles episode after this?” Steve asked as Bucky made a pleased noise with Steve’s fever going down

“Anything you want babydoll” Bucky hummed then left a kiss on his forehead before going back into the kitchen to retrieve the chicken soup. Bucky reentered the room with a tray of soup and a glass of water

“Buck I can’t. I’m too nauseous” Steve stated shaking his head and putting a hand on his stomach

“You’ve got to eat something” Bucky replied as he set the tray on Steve’s lap and took a spoonful holding it up before saying in his best Borg voice “Resistance is futile”  

Steve made a face before allowing Bucky to spoon feed him and Bucky him a grin “There ya go. See wasn’t so bad”

“I’m going to puke on you” Steve warned with a queasy face and Bucky simply put another spoonful in his mouth

“It’s alright. Wouldn’t be the first or the last” Bucky replied as he fed Steve another spoonful.

-

Steve recovered a few days later and was currently getting ready to run out to the store to grab art supplies for his next piece. Bucky was getting ready for work as Steve was about to leave.

“Hey doll can you grab some milk while you’re out?” Bucky asked from where he was pouring the last of the milk into his cereal

“Aye-Aye Captain” Steve replied, saluting his boyfriend from the door

“I can’t hear yoooou” Bucky grinned as he imitated the captain from SpongeBob

“Aye-Aye Captain!” Steve shouted back and Bucky made his way over dropping a kiss to the blonds lips “Nerd”

“Punk” Bucky hummed, pressing another kiss to his lips before Steve slipped out of his arms and out the door.

-

Bucky just got on his lunch break when Steve called “Hey Babydoll”

“Can you tell Sam I can fit into a dryer?” Steve asked and a long pause followed

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen it” Bucky replied with an amused smile on his face “I don’t doubt you could be but I don’t think that’s a good-“

“I’m getting in the dryer” Steve replied

“Steve-“ Bucky started but was swiftly cut off

“Oh Bucky doesn’t approve? Steve now you have to get in the dryer” Sam chimed in

“Steve” Bucky warned and he could tell Steve was chewing his lip debating on it

“I’m getting in” Steve confirmed and Sam let out a whoop of victory

“Don’t worry I’ll send pictures” Sam spoke smugly before ending the call. Bucky looked at his phone with disbelief and called Steve again for it to go to voicemail. Bucky groaned and grumbled as he ate his lunch only for a few minutes later to get a text of a picture of Steve in the dryer.

-

Later that evening when Bucky got home to Steve making dinner, he walked up behind him and wrapped his arms around Steve’s thin waist. “Honey I’m home” he murmured into Steve’s neck which the blond let out a giggle

“I’m making grilled chicken” Steve leaned against Bucky “Can you cut the veggies?”

“hmm I don’t know can you explain why you got in a dryer?” Bucky asked pressing a kiss to Steve’s neck

“Sam said I couldn’t do it” Steve mumbled

“So if Sam said you couldn’t jump off a cliff would you?” Bucky mused as he still pressed kisses along Steve’s neck

“No” Steve responded and Bucky hummed, nibbling on Steve’s skin “Buck…”

“You could have gotten stuck and suffocated” Bucky murmured, his hands traveling under Steve’s shirt and massaging the skin there “very reckless of you”

“Buck…I…” Steve stuttered out as Bucky’s hands slid over his bare skin lower and lower.

“What’s that babydoll?” Bucky whispered against Steve’s earlobe causing the blond to moan, his body arching into his touch and the blonds arousal growing by the minute. Bucky pressed his body into Steve’s and bit down on his shoulder resulting in said man to cry out. The beeping of the oven broke the spell and Bucky pulled back. “Oh look at that the chicken is ready”

“Wha?” Steve blinked before processing the chicken was done before waving it off “It can wait”

“Nope it can’t” Bucky stated “Sorry those who get in dryers can’t miss dinner. I don’t make the rules”

“Oh come on Buck” Steve whined and Bucky simply smirked at him as he took the chicken out, switching off the oven

“No dice doll. Someone’s gotta punish you to keep you in line” Bucky hummed and Steve groaned loudly, shifting uncomfortably.

Chapter Text

1 Year ago

Steve was wrapped in Bucky’s sweater, hospital coffee in his hand and his eyes red from a mix of crying and no sleep. He knew Bucky would yell at him for barely eating anything but how could he eat when Bucky was in coma? Steve felt so helpless, even more so now watching Bucky’s bandaged chest rise and fall. He rubbed Bucky’s hand with his thumb as he held it in his hand and warm tears slipped down his cheek as he regarded the missing arm. Bucky would be devastated at the loss of it and imagining the pain he was going to feel made Steve’s chest ache.

Bucky suddenly squeezed Steve’s hand and the blonde’s eyes went wide “Buck?” The sleepy groan and the fluttering open of the brunette’s eyes answered him.

Bucky gave a sleepy smile “Heya stevie”

Steve broke out into a hug smile as tears rolled down his cheeks before hugged Bucky  then pulled back quickly “Sorry I didn’t mean to hurt you but you’ve been in coma and I just…”

“Don’t cry. You know I hate seeing you cry” Bucky slurred, the pain medication clearly was still in action and Steve laughed with tears still sliding down his cheeks. The doctor came into the check on everything before he pulled Steve away to chat with him.

“His vitals are normal for his condition and it seems he will make a full recovery. But Mr. Barnes won’t be able to process his lost arm in this state and it might take him a few days to register to him. He does have a concussion meaning the memory shortage is normal and we will keep track of it.” The doctor explained and Steve nodded, listening fully. “Don’t worry Mr. Rogers, he will be fine. He’s a fighter”

“Thank you” Steve replied with a tight smile before reentering the room and taking a seat.

“Spreading rumors about me punk?” Bucky joked with a sleepy smile

“All the time” Steve replied

-

Bucky was in and out of consciousness for the next day. He was still pretty out of it and the doctor said he wouldn’t likely remember anything of that day. Not to mention it wouldn’t process with Bucky about his arm. It was the third day after Bucky woke up and Steve was laying on the bed with Bucky after the brunette insisted on him at least laying down for a bit when he found out Steve hadn’t slept and barely ate anything over the past few days.

Steve had been doting on his friend, worrying like a mother hen and scrabbling to help Bucky feel less pain. It was late evening and the pair was watching some stupid gameshow. Well Bucky was, Steve was half asleep.

“Steve” Bucky spoke softly and Steve opened his eyes

“Yeah?” Steve replied looking into Bucky’s stormy eyes

“My arm is gone” Bucky whispered and Steve felt like he couldn’t breathe. He hated the look of pain and understanding in those eyes. Suddenly Steve felt a deep hatred for the world. How could it treat someone as amazing as Bucky like this? It was so unfair. Bucky deserved so much better.  

“I know” Steve replied softly and took Bucky’s hand as the brunettes eyes filled with tears “I’m here. You’re safe”  

“I can still feel it” He murmured “I can still see the bomb and the explosion..” Steve squeezed Bucky’s hand and used his other hand to cup Bucky’s cheek, wiping away the stray tear. He listened to Bucky describe in detail what he remembered and if both of them were crying by the end then neither noticed.  Bucky ended up with his head laying against Steve’s tiny shoulder. If anyone went in, it would look at the small frame of Steve Rogers cradling the well-muscled body of Bucky Barnes but they didn’t care. Bucky was always the one holding Steve but Bucky needed this right now.

Steve ran his fingers through Bucky’s brown hair and noted how long it was getting. Bucky was slowly drifting to sleep, feeling safe in Steve’s arms and Steve kept talking softly about paints.

After Bucky’s parents died, Steve stayed up all night running his fingers through Bucky’s hair and talking about the vast amount of the history of the brush stroke. It helped Bucky fall asleep, listening to the comforting sound of Steve’s voice and Steve loved he could comfort him.

-

Bucky was released to go home a week later and Steve was stressed out of high heavens. Steve ran by the apartment, cleaning everything till it was shining and showered but still he wore Bucky’s clothing. Steve worked hard to make sure everything was ready for when he brought back Bucky, all groceries were stocked up on and all pain killers were ready to go. By the time Steve got back to the hospital Bucky’s Commander had come by to give his news and the medals. Steve took in the doorway as he watched the exchange.

“Thank you for your service Sargent Barnes” The man said and saluted Bucky and Bucky returned it. “You’re a lucky man Bucky that boyfriend of yours wouldn’t leave your side not even for a second. He really loves you”

Bucky opened his mouth to correct him but just smiled and thanked him. The commander was right. Steve was in love with him. He knew since freshman year of college but Bucky was stupid enough to tell the blond he didn’t feel the same and he started dating Dot. The thing was Bucky was confused about his feelings and didn’t want to mess up their relationship. Did he love Steve? Or was he in love with Steve? Did that make him gay? He had never been with a guy and he had always dated woman.

 Then came Tony and jealous became a thing very real to Bucky. The very first time he saw them together, Bucky knew he was in love with Steve and he hurt him for no reason. So Bucky decided to wait to tell Steve until after Tony and him broke up. Then he enlisted to help pay for college and Steve tried to follow but he was simply too small. Bucky blinked into awareness as Steve entered the room passing the Commander.

“I lied” Bucky blurted out and Steve scrunched his eyebrows in confusion

“About what?” Steve questioned and then smiled “How much pain killers you’ve had?”

“I lied about not eating your pudding in the fourth grade” Bucky blurted instead of what he wanted to say. So maybe today wasn’t the day he blurted out his ‘I love you’ but he knew he had too.

“You didn’t think I knew that?” Steve chuckled and Bucky smiled nervously.  

Present

Bucky laid with his arm wrapped around Steve’s waist while Steve sketched softly into his pad “If you’re going to work out before we go ice skating you better do it now”

“You’re just coming up with an excuse to see me sweaty” Bucky snorted and tickled Steve’s side causing him to giggle.

“Stop it” Steve said through giggles as Bucky started to mercilessly tickle the petite man. Steve had no way to fight back against Bucky, he was 95 pounds and barely strong enough to lift the milk carton out of the fridge. “Mercy!” he laughed

“Magic word?” Bucky stopped briefly to give Steve time to reply

“Please?” Steve panted from laughing so hard

“Hmm nope” Bucky continued to tickle Steve until the smaller man started to cough and Bucky quickly got his inhaler. Steve took two puffs and was glaring at Bucky but all Bucky could do was burst into laughter as the blonde glared at him. After his laughter died die, Bucky pulled Steve close and kissed his cheek

“Sorry babydoll” Bucky murmured and Steve pouted deeply

“Go work out fatty” Steve grumbled causing Bucky to laugh again before kissing Steve’s cheek and getting changed into his exercise clothes. Bucky grabbed Steve’s chin and kissed him soundly.

“I love you” Bucky murmured softly and Steve smiled softly

“I love you too” Steve leaned up to kiss him again and then leaned over to kiss the metal arm “Every part of you”

“How do I deserve you?” Bucky murmured, his affections for the small man practically pouring from him

“We deserve each other” Steve replied playing with Bucky’s messy ponytail and Bucky rested his metal hand on Steve’s stomach causing the smaller man to hum at the pleasant cold touch.

“Yeah we do” Bucky agreed as he got lost in Steve’s blue eyes and kissing the smaller man again “I’ll be back soon”

“I’ll be waiting” Steve replied smiling like a love struck fool and Bucky responded with a matching smile before he headed out the door. Thirty minutes later a very sweaty Bucky enters the apartment and Steve looks up from his sketch pad just in time to see Bucky strip off his shirt.

Bucky was panting slightly and went over pressing a kiss to Steve’s lips “Hold my feet?” he asked and Steve nodded sitting on Bucky’s feet while he did sit ups. Every time Bucky would sit up he would kiss Steve and by 50 sit ups Steve was giggling.   

-

Later that night the pair went out for ice skating and Steve was holding Bucky’s hand as they glided along the ice. When they skated over to the little sitting area on the ice, Steve spoke up “I got you something” Steve said and reached into his pocket giving him the envelope.

“And here I thought you were proposing” Bucky joked as he took the envelope

“No remember when we were in the 3rd grade and you said you would be the one to propose?” Steve grinned and Bucky smiled at the memory

“You got me there doll” Bucky replied and opened the envelope; it contained two tickets to the winter science convention. Bucky broke out in a grin before pulling Steve into a tight embrace “This is… Thank you” Bucky let out a laugh and kissed Steve again. Bucky had always wanted to go to the winter science convention but he never had been able to find the time or the money “How?”

“Bruce He runs a panel there and I asked if he could get us some tickets” Steve beamed at how happy Bucky was

“I love you” Bucky grinned happily and kissed all over Steve’s face causing the blonde to giggle happily.

“I love you too” Steve smiled widely as he relished in the attention and Bucky’s happiness. 

Chapter Text

One Year Earlier

The nightmares started about a week after getting discharged. Bucky woke up screaming for help or swinging his fists. Sometimes he woke up and just screamed out of sheer pain. Steve was there through it all. Every time Bucky woke, Steve was by his side talking softly and reminding him he was safe. Steve ended up just sleeping in Bucky’s bed just to make it easier to bring Bucky back down. It was on one of these nights that Bucky woke up screaming, it was one of the nights he woke up still in mid battle. He was flat against the wall looking like a caged animal but he was utterly still. Eerily calm as he watched Steve intensely.

“Buck. It’s me Steve” Steve spoke softly, slowly approaching “You’re okay. You’re safe. Can you hear me?” he reached his hand out to the brunette “You’re in Brooklyn. It’s 3:45 am. Your name is James Buchanan Barnes”

Bucky eyed the hand warily but didn’t flinch away from it and Steve thought he might see some recognition in his eyes. Steve smiled slightly before resting his hand lightly on Bucky’s arm, everything was still for a while and Steve thought everything was going to be fine until the brunette suddenly tackled him to the ground.

Bucky had pinned Steve’s body to the ground and had his hands around the smaller man’s throat.  Bucky’s weight was crushing Steve’s fragile chest and the blonde was gasping for air as Bucky’s fingers tightened their grip.

“B-bu-buck” Steve gasped out and gripped Bucky’s hand. Even with a one arm disadvantage Steve was too small and too weak to overpower the brunette. “P-pl-please”

Bucky’s eyes widen with sudden horror and realization as he came out of it. The brunette immediately let out of Steve’s throat and got off him quickly while the blonde gasped for breath, coughing violently. Once Steve had taken a couple breaths he looked up concerned

 “A-are you okay?” he asked Bucky. As if Bucky hadn’t just tried to choke him to death and Bucky was shaking as he looked at the concern etched into Steve’s young features. Steve “Buck?”

“Am I okay? Are you okay? I could have killed you!” Bucky exclaimed his eyes were still wide with horror “Oh god I could’ve killed you”

“Bucky it’s okay. This isn’t your fault. I’m okay” Steve soothed “Hey it’s okay. Stay with me”

“Steve I am so sorry” Bucky said and looking like he wanted to hug the smaller man. Steve pulled Bucky into a hug

“It’s okay. I’m okay” Steve soothed and the brunette buried his face in Steve’s neck

-

The next morning Steve woke up to Bucky making cereal and when he went out he smiled lazily. “Morning”

“Morning” Bucky replied and Steve got out some cereal as well. Bucky tried with one hand to pour Steve milk but ended up pouring it on Steve’s shirt. Bucky set down the milk and grabbed a towel an apology on his tongue

“Don’t apologize. It’s okay” Steve smiled reassuringly “I’ll clean it up. Eat your breakfast”

“Steve-“ Bucky started and Steve gave him a light push towards the table. Steve cleaned up the spilt milk and walked over to the laundry basket full of fresh clothes. Steve stripped off his shirt and was about to pull on another one when he was stopped by a hand. Steve jumped silently in surprise. Bucky was sitting at the table and suddenly was right by him.

“Buck?” Steve questioned and then followed the brunette’s gaze that was fixed on his chest and neck area. “Oh” he murmured when he was the bruises forming there and the distinct hand print on his neck “Buck”

“I hurt you” Bucky had a deep frown on his face and his eyes held such disgust for himself as he touched the damaged skin lightly “Stevie I’m so sorry”

“It’s just a bruise” Steve murmured taking Bucky’s hand in his own and squeezing his hand “I’m okay. This isn’t your fault okay?”

“This is all my fault” Bucky tried to pull away but Steve held on to his hand tightly

“Bucky look at me” Steve said sternly “Look at me” Bucky’s eyes finally met Steve’s “This is not your fault. Don’t you dare blame yourself”

-

A few days later Steve started doing research on ways he could help Bucky and contacted the VA nearby to ask. They suggested convincing Bucky to go to the group meetings and visiting the center, along with other tips. So as the tow sat down for dinner Steve pulled the flyer from his pocket and pushed it towards Bucky.

“I read that talking about it helps and I know you’re going to say you talk to me but I can’t understand in the way someone has been in the war can. I just want you to look at it and maybe go to one meeting. They said you don’t even have to talk you can just listen or observe. It is up to you but Buck I can’t sit here watching you suffer so much. It’s killing me to see you like this” Steve had his hand on Bucky’s and the brunette was watching the blonds pleading eyes.

“Okay. One meeting” Bucky agreed and Steve smiled

-

Steve was painting when Bucky got back from the VA meeting the next night, soft music playing in the background. “Hey Buck. How was it?” Steve asked immediately when he saw Bucky entering

“Helpful. Really helpful” Bucky responded

“Do you want to talk about it?” Steve asked putting down his paint brush and turning his body towards him.

“Not yet” Bucky responded and Steve nodded picking his paint brush back up

“Whenever you’re ready. I’m here” Steve smiled and Bucky responded in kind.

“I know” Bucky settled onto the couch and watched Steve paint. “Whatever happened to Tony? Why haven’t I seen that asshole around?”

“You don’t know?” Steve asked and Bucky shook his head “We broke up”

To be fair Bucky really tried not to be very happy about that occurrence but not everything can be helped. He asked in his most sincere voice “oh…Why?”

“He asked me to choose between you or him” Steve responded not even looking up from his painting. Bucky could clearly see Steve was over it as if it was just something that happened.

“What’d you choose?” Bucky asked and Steve gave him the sassiest look

“Who do you think?” Steve rolled his eyes and returned to his painting.

“I love you Stevie” Bucky sighed with a smile across his features and Steve stopped painting

“Buck you can’t say things like that to me” Steve responded quietly, his sad blues eyes looking at him just like he had on that day.

“What if I mean it that way?” Bucky questioned

“C’mon please don’t play about this” Steve pleaded his eyes meeting Bucky’s.

“I’m not playing Steve, I love you. That day you told me you loved me I lied when I said I didn’t feel the say way because I do. I was scared and confused about my feelings then but now I’m sure. I’ve never looked at a guy in that way but you. You’re the exception to that. I needed to figure myself out and when you started dating Tony I was so jealous and furious. I realized I loved you too late and then I went off to war. The only thing I could ever think about was you Stevie and how much I missed you. When that bomb went off all I could think was how I regret not telling you how I felt” Bucky had moved across the room to the smaller man and was now a few inches away from him. “I love you”

“I love you too” Steve responded after a beat his eyes filling with joy and a wide smile breaking out over both of their faces. Bucky pulled Steve up and into a kiss which the small blond responded passionately to.

-

Present

Steve hummed happily as he painted a little star on Bucky’s metal arm while the brunette napped with his head in Steve’s lap. Bucky slowly found his way to the world of the awake “What are you doing sweetheart?”

“Painting” Steve responded with a small smile down at the veteran and he smiled up at the artist

“Okay” Bucky yawned and moved his flesh hand to pull Steve down into a kiss “What time is it?”

“13:12” Steve responded against Bucky’s lips before pressing another kiss to Bucky’s lips “You almost missed the space documentary but I remembered to record it”

“You’re the best” Bucky grinned and the blond hummed in agreement as he pulled back to finish his work “I have an idea for 4th of July”

“Also your birthday doll” Bucky inquired staring up at Steve’s jawline

“Yeah and it will be very crowded and fireworks will go off. I know that it’s going to be hard so I was wondering if maybe we rent a cabin instead of sitting through it? We can make cocktails and watch Star Trek?” Steve offered. He knew Bucky suffered from PTSD and any loud noise even know still would make Bucky had a mini freak out. Fireworks would just not be a good idea. Bucky stared at the blond and was amazed at how considerate he was. Steve would give up whatever celebration he wanted to have to make sure Bucky wasn’t in pain. No matter what Steve would always be thinking about Bucky and how he could help him. No doubt that without Steve, Bucky wouldn’t be where he is today.

“I’d like that” Bucky responded and a loud words were said as the two stared at each other. Both understood and they didn’t need to say it aloud “I love you so much babydoll”

“And I love you” Steve smiled kissing Bucky again “