A Triple Threat

Disclaimer: I don't own anything from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and I'm not making any money from this fic

Summary: Sam discovers something while he and Rumlow are battling. Written for the prompt relief in the Advent Bingo Challenge

Warning(s): Spanking; some violence; spoilers up to and including Captain America: The Winter Soldier; AU; some swearing; some references to sexual situations between two men

Pairing: Sam Wilson/Brock Rumlow

Author's Note: This is a complete disregard for canon...but it's something that, if it had happened, would have been an interesting twist. So...

###

Sam drew back, eyeing Rumlow, watching for any kind of opening. The two of them were fairly evenly matched. He was putting on a show of confidence, but he wasn't sure he'd take the HYDRA agent down. Then again, he was buying time to stop the main plan from being carried out. Steve Rogers had asked for his help.

He wasn't going to let Captain America down.

An explosion caused Sam to whip his head round for a split second. Inwardly, he cursed that his wings were broken. The idea of taking flight and leaving Rumlow behind to get caught in the crossfire.

Turning back, Sam ducked a punch aimed at him by the other man and then dropped into a crouch, sweeping Rumlow's legs out from under him. The other man crashed heavily onto the floor and Sam pushed him down with a knee on his chest. "You picked the wrong side."

Rumlow glared up at him, eyes flashing. Without warning, he thrust his knee up and into Sam's groin.

The pain was staggering and Sam rolled off Rumlow's chest. Climbing to his feet was difficult, but he managed and stood facing the other man.

"Stay down," Rumlow muttered, pressing a button on the comm on his wrist.

"Like hell." Sam lunged for him, delivering a punch to the jaw that rocked him back a few inches.

Rumlow narrowed his eyes, falling back as he watched Sam warily. "You planning to come after the small fry like me instead of helping the Captain?"

"He doesn't need my help." Something about the tone of Rumlow's voice made Sam frown. He took a step closer to the other man, watching Rumlow's every movement. The man was a traitor to SHIELD. A traitor to everything Steve and Sam stood for.

So why was he hesitating?

The comm on Rumlow's wrist crackled and the man took his eyes off Sam long enough to look down at it. Taking advantage of his distraction, Sam threw himself forward, tackling the other man to the ground once more. They hit and Rumlow's breath escaped in a whoosh of air.

"Report, Crossbones," a familiar voice came from the comms.

Sam kept his elbows firmly planted on Rumlow's chest, but his gaze shifted to the comm unit. "Fury?" he asked out loud...and then looked down into the other man's face. "Fury isn't HYDRA."

"Get off me." Rumlow shoved at Sam's chest.

Sam didn't budge. "You're working with Nick Fury?" He shook his head. "No way. You killed...people you knew. Your friends. There's no way you're one of the good guys."

"I've had to sell it." Rumlow stopped shoving at Sam as he growled out the response. "I couldn't hesitate. I reported it to Fury as soon as they tried to recruit me. We knew I'd have to cross the line. Do what it took to get in with them."

Sam slowly levered his weight off of Rumlow as he shook his head, unwilling to believe the other man. "What kinda deal did you make? Immunity from your crimes?"

Rumlow stood up, but didn't take his eyes off Sam's face. He snorted softly and glanced away, but his face was pale and tense. "I never expected to survive this. I'm not 'one of the good guys'. I've done bad things to get as high up in HYDRA as I am. But they still didn't trust me to tell me when the activation would occur." He tensed up as he continued, "I couldn't stop it...but I'm a good marksman. I shot to wound. Not kill." He didn't speak with any pride in his voice; just as if he was stating a fact.

The sound of another explosion had Sam whipping his head round, eyes widening as he saw flames curling towards them. "Damn it." He turned back to Rumlow. Knowing what he now knew...he grabbed his own comm unit as he ran forward, towards the other man. "We've gotta get out of here."

"I'm not done."

Sam snorted and shook his head, then grabbed hold of Rumlow. He wasn't as strong as Captain America, for instance. If the other man had resisted him, Sam wouldn't have been able to drag him along.

Knowing he couldn't worry about Steve...Captain America was much better at taking care of himself than Sam was...Sam raced towards the window, tugging Rumlow along with him. He quickly accessed the comm units and directed the airship outside to the part of the building as he jumped out.

Thankfully, Rumlow jumped along with Sam and they quickly landed on the airship. It wasn't a graceful landing, by any means, but by shuffling along and gripping on tightly, Sam was able to clamber into the craft and settle just behind the pilot.

As Rumlow scrambled into the craft as well, Sam spoke into his comm. "Fury, you there? I've got Rumlow with me. How's Cap doing?" He kept his tone carefully neutral and his eyes straight ahead. He'd done his part in getting the other man out of there.

"I'm heading to his last known position now," Fury said. "Head to the base. I'll see you there."

"Yeah, okay." Sam sighed.

"Why are you pissed?" Rumlow asked directly. "It wasn't you I was lying to."

Sam snorted softly and stared out of the window as an excuse not to have to respond straight away. "We've just been beating the crap out of each other. If I'm bruised and aching, I know you've gotta be too. Turns out it was unnecessary. I could have been fighting with Cap. Didn't have to be fighting you."

"You think you'd feel better to hit me a bit more?"

This time, Sam did look at Rumlow. He took in the already-forming bruises on the other man's face and shook his head. "Yeah, because hitting you again is going to make me feel so much better."

Rumlow didn't say anything and Sam leaned forward to get the pilot's attention, letting him know where they were headed.

###

Rumlow had been quiet since they'd arrived on the base. He'd said nothing when Sam had debriefed with Fury, merely standing still and quiet, an uncomfortable look on his face.

"We've got Steve in a bed at this base," Fury said, looking at Sam. "I suppose you'll want to see him. Rumlow, we need to debrief separately."

"Yes sir." Rumlow glanced briefly at Sam, but didn't say anything...not even to apologise.

Knowing he shouldn't really expect any different – it wasn't like Sam had known Rumlow before, after all – Sam just gave a nod to Fury and then headed out of the room.

Walking down the corridor, Sam couldn't help but notice how deserted the base was. Had that many SHIELD agents really secretly been HYDRA? Or had more died than he'd thought?

It didn't take long for Sam to reach the room where Steve was. He stood in the doorway and breathed a quiet sigh of relief.

Steve wasn't conscious, but at least he wasn't hooked up to any machines. He looked battered and bruised, but when Sam moved closer to the bed, he could see that Steve's chest was rising and falling steadily.

Taking a few more steps, Sam dropped onto the chair next to the bed and settled in to wait.

###

"On your left."

Sam looked up from his book and smiled as he noticed Steve awake and looking at him. "Good to see you conscious, Cap."

"Bucky." Steve cleared his throat. "Is he...did anyone...?"

"No trace of him. I'm guessing he went undergound." Or HYDRA had nabbed him again, but Sam wasn't interested in putting a downer on his friend.

A quiet knock on the door had Sam glancing up. He frowned when he saw Brock Rumlow standing framed there and then looked at Steve. "Sorry I didn't get to soften the blow, but Rumlow? Turns out he was working with Fury the whole time."

"Sorry for what I had to do to sell it, Captain." Rumlow stepped further into the room.

"Oh, he gets an apology," Sam muttered, more annoyed by that fact than he should have been.

Steve sat up slowly. "I'm glad to hear it, but a lot of good people are still dead," he said quietly.

"And a lot are in the hospital. I know." Rumlow stopped at what might have been considered a 'safe' distance from the bed. "The people who are left don't trust me. Of course, it's not like I can blame them." He gave a smile that was more like a grimace and a self-deprecating shrug. "This wasn't the first time I had to go undercover, but it's the first time I haven't been able to look at myself in the mirror afterwards."

"What are you looking for?" Steve asked directly.

"I don't know." Rumlow hesitated, looking uncertainly from one to the other. "Maybe...to explain. So you both don't go on thinking I'm the bad guy."

"I don't think you're a bad guy." Sam shrugged. "But I think you owe me more than a half-assed apology."

"You want to beat me?" Rumlow spread his hands to the sides. "Go ahead. I won't fight back. Just avoid my kidneys? I'm not a big fan of the blood when I piss."

"I'm not going to beat you," Sam replied immediately. "I can still see the bruises from our last fight. I bet you're still moving stiffly. I know I am," he muttered.

Steve cleared his throat. "Look, both of you know I came from a more old-fashioned time. Where corporal punishment was used on soldiers. Seems to me that type of punishment would fit here."

Sam frowned. "What? You think he needs to go out and cut a switch or something? Take off his belt?"

"I'm talking about a punishment more personal than that." Steve looked at Rumlow, whose head was cocked to one side, as if he was listening intently. "I'm talking about a more personal punishment. Bare butt. Over the knee."

"Wouldn't that be your responsibility?" Sam asked Steve.

It was Rumlow who answered. "You were the one who I fought with. If this will put things right between us, I'll submit to that punishment." He walked over to stand next to Sam's chair.

Putting his book on the floor, Sam wondered if he should suggest they move this punishment somewhere a little more private. But before he could so much as open his mouth, Rumlow had shoved his pants and underwear down before bending over Sam's lap.

And that brought up another problem. Sam had never really considered who he was physically attracted to in the past, but with the other man bent over his knee, bare butt in prominent position to be spanked, certain parts of his anatomy were beginning to take an interest.

Determined to think only of the fact he was punishing the other man, Sam cast a quick glance towards the door, making sure no one else was coming in, and then lifted his hand, bringing it down firmly on Rumlow's right cheek.

A pink palm print showed up, with slightly lighter fingermarks, and Sam couldn't stop himself from gently tracing the mark left. He felt Rumlow shiver and then delivered another, sharper smack to his left cheek.

Rumlow hissed out a sharp breath as Sam settled quickly into a pattern of swats, going down to Rumlow's thighs before he started over again, the other man's backside pinkening as Sam continued bringing his hand down in firm, crisp smacks.

Partway through the current circuit, Rumlow became aware of the fact Steve had left the room. But he paid the Captain no more thought. His entire world had shrunk down to the man across his lap and the slow, hard smacks he was dishing out.

"You shouldn't have lied." Sam's voice was abnormally loud and he winced but continued, "Even if you were told to, you shouldn't have fought with me. Shouldn't have been responsible for so many people hurt. So many people you knew who are now dead. You told me you didn't expect to survive, but that's a coward's response. If nothing else, you should have told Cap. Maybe you wouldn't have had to lose so much."

"I wanted to." Rumlow's voice was strained. "I didn't want...this. I didn't want so many good men and women to die. I never expected this to happen."

Sam shifted Rumlow forward slightly and began to swat the creases between his bottom and thighs, wrapping an arm around the other man's waist as he began to squirm futilely in response to the sharp smacks. "What did you expect?" he asked, as Rumlow's buttocks began to blush a brighter red under his palm. "That you could just disappear and let everything run its course? It doesn't work like that."

"Ah." The gasp was almost soundless and Rumlow's legs began to kick, as if he were trying to swim off Sam's lap. "I'm sorry. You're right...I shouldn't have decided to go it alone. Steve deserved more respect than I gave him. You didn't deserve..." His voice broke.

Realising that tears weren't far off, Sam realised he didn't want to break the other man. Rumlow was a soldier following orders. And it had to be killing him inside that he'd lost so many friends. Sam rested his hand on the warmed backside across his lap. "Maybe Fury thought he was getting you to do the right thing, but I don't believe he considered what it might cost you."

The sob took Sam by surprise, but maybe it shouldn't have. Maybe Rumlow didn't need someone to blame him, but someone to understand and to accept him.

Sam tugged Rumlow's clothing back into place and helped the other man to stand.

Rumlow couldn't meet his eyes. "I'm sorry," he muttered.

Sam had wanted an apology. Now, he just wanted to get rid of that haunted look on the other man's face. He shifted forward and pressed his lips to Rumlow's, kissing him, feeling the other man's stubble scraping against his chin and lips.

Rumlow stood, as if shell-shocked, for several seconds and then he was responding to the kiss, almost hungrily, wrapping his arms around Sam.

Sam could taste salt on his lips and he pressed closer forward, hands running over Rumlow's back under his shirt. The other man's body was hard against his...but as the kiss deepened, Rumlow became more relaxed, sinking into the kiss. He didn't resist when Sam dragged them both towards the bed.

The End