Disclaimer: I don't own Cap...supersighface.
So...I really, really wanted to get this story started after seeing the Avengers. I love them all, but Cap still stuck out to me, and was just generally adorable and hilarious.
I'm not giving up on my Stark/OC story 'Stereo Love', I promise. I have ideas, and I have chapters written/ready to be tweaked. I just thought it'd be way more fun to see Riley in the form of present-day cameos (in this story) and then go back and see what made her the person she is by the time this story happens. I'm working on that story as I type this one.
Long story short, just bear with me. :)
This is slightly AU and takes place at the end of Cap and right before/early on in the Avengers.
...Ok, maybe a little more than slight. But for the most part I'm following the canon. Heh.
"So that's really him, after all this time, huh?" The female agent mumbled more to herself than to her colleague.
Her question, while not unheard, only earned her a nod and a small smile from the older agent in the room. She was definitely curious, but nowhere near as awestruck and speechless as her companion.
More time passed as the pair occupied the room in silence. Complete and awkward silence. The female agent hated the discomfort of it. It was not that she didn't like peace and quiet. The problem was just that Agent Coulson, while quirky in his own way, was not typically this quiet. She was used to getting a clever, smartass response by now. In addition the thawing and comatose Captain America currently occupying the bed did not ease her discomfort.
This had to stop.
"You're practically giddy right now, aren't you?"
Silence. Nothing. She could swear her eye was about to start twitching.
Deciding on a little good-natured ribbing, she glanced over at Coulson again.
"I really hope you don't have those cards with you right now." She recalled their previous conversation over how big a deal this was.
Without missing a beat, the older agent shot back a simple, unreadable "And if I did?"
"I don't think harassing Sleeping Beauty here for autographs so soon is exactly going to make him feel comfortable with his...situation."
"If the shock of the reality check he's going to get doesn't kill him first, then maybe."
"That's why we have this room set up. We're going to break it to him slowly."
"So I guessed. However, if he's as legendary as I've heard, I highly doubt he's that...gullible. I'm willing to bet coffee on it."
Back to silence. She mentally sighed and slumped in her seat.
'He is quite the site to see' she mused to herself after a few minutes. And he definitely was. Tall, blonde, solidly built, handsome. He'd definitely turn the heads of the other female agents. 'I wonder what color his eyes are...'
She stopped herself right there, inwardly cringing at thoughts. '...Way to beat Phil at turning the creep factor up.'
Finally, the female agent stood, temporarily giving up on both Coulson and Sleeping Beauty. This had been going on for quite some time, and she couldn't take it anymore.
"Speaking of coffee, I'm going to get some before I have a conniption. Need anything?"
Reaching into his pocket, the older agent pulled out a piece of sketchpad paper and handed it to his young colleague.
"Take this and give it to Weapons and Equipment. They'll take it from there."
Agent Amy Irving sighed heavily at the weirdness of it all and left Coulson to watch the Captain, his file folder and the sketch paper in hand. Not being able to resist glancing at it, she opened the paper slowly and couldn't help but shake her head and grin at the image.
"Told you so." Amy said with a laugh to Coulson, looking at the security footage of the very much alive and perturbed Captain Rogers plowing through agents and out of the building. He had gotten out of the building with such ease to the point it was almost sad.
"At least he lives up to expectation. Fury was afraid he may have been a little worse for wear after all this time." Coulson replied calmly.
"That is true. At least now I can see why my grandfather was so impressed. He would always tell me all of these stories about him..."
It was true. Her beloved, late grandfather had never failed to tell stories of Captain America. Even as she got older, would tell her of the man behind the mask as well.
And as much as she wasn't willing to admit it, there was a little adoration down in her heart for the Captain, too. Anyone that had that level of respect from her grandfather...
Both agents then turned their eyes to the current camera trained on one Steve Rogers in one of the briefing rooms. His shoulders were slumped, and it didn't take to genius to see that he looked like a man who had truly lost everything.
Moments passed until she finally decided to ask the big question. "So...that only leaves one thing: What's S.H.I.E.L.D going to do with him? I mean, he is still a person, after all."
She could swear a ghost of a smile crossed Coulson's face. "That's where you come in."
"That's why you were given his file. If you had read the fine print of the assignment, you would already know that it's your job to acclimate Captain Rogers to present time and bring him up to speed."
She opened her mouth to reply, but he quickly cut her off with a calm, knowing look that screamed 'skimming doesn't count'.
She eventually sighed and spoke again. "You can't be serious. I'm actually on babysitting detail?"
"Not really. But, if you prefer you could be. You're more than welcome to go speak to Stark." Amy could have sworn he almost grimaced.
"...Touché." Amy cringed. She couldn't really stand Tony Stark the few times they had crossed paths, and truly had no clue what her sister had seen in him at one point in time. "I guess I have quite a bit of homework, then."
After a few days of pulling records on Steven Rogers, Amy finally felt ready enough for their first confrontation. It had been a seemingly tedious process at first, but as she found out more and more about Steven Rogers, the more intrigued she became. Like her, he was an avid baseball fan. Not surprising, but at least she could maybe make some kind of relatable conversation with him about something other than the weather. In addition, she would never have pegged the war hero an art student, ever. In an even more interesting find, she had stumbled upon a photo of what must have been his "before" self. The difference was startling. She sometimes wondered, while looking through all of his records, if that little guy was still in there somewhere.
She had decided to dress down and out of uniform today, in hopes that Rogers wouldn't feel as cornered. The very last thing she needed was for the super-soldier to get defensive on her. Wearing simple skinny jeans and a plain, white v-neck accompanied by tan, leather riding boots and a leather bomber jacket with a scarf, she felt almost naked without her usual sneak-suit. She had even ditched her typical bandana and pulled her 'long-ish' brown hair back into a messy ponytail. She found herself almost nervous approaching the retro-style gym. She was nervous that things would not go so smoothly. On top of that, some part of her wanted the person her grandfather spoke so highly of to be the same after all this time.
She followed the sound of connecting fists until she found Captain Rogers practically destroying a punching bag over by the boxing ring. Amy quietly made her way over to him and just watched in fascination for a few minutes, until he took the bag completely off of its hook and sent it skidding across the floor.
Steve's head jerked in her direction, eyes not hiding his surprise at all. After a moment, however, he rose to his full height and simply walked past her to the bench, and his gym bag.
Finally, he responded. "Did Fury send you to get me back in the real world?"
"You could say that, sir." She wasn't going to be informal with him. Regardless of the fact that he looked like he was in his mid-twenties at the most, much like her, this man was almost quadruple her age.
"Just Steve, please. And with all due respect, ma'am, I think I'll adjust on my own..." He trailed off for a second, recalling some of his more unsavory experiences over the past couple of days, and added "...eventually, anyway."
Amy laughed lightly and smiled gently at the man in front of her. She'd never seriously been called ma'am before. "Just Amy, please. And I can tell you're much more unsure of that statement than I am."
He began removing the athletic tape from his hands and stuffed it in the bag. "I just...I don't even know anymore."
"And that's precisely what I'm here to help with!" Her smile widened.
She didn't expected that to convince him, but she didn't expect him to just completely shut off towards her. He grabbed his bag and began to walk off from her, out of the gym. In passing, he told her "I'm not going to be anyone's burden. Not again."
This was not how things were supposed to go. She didn't need to see the tinge of sadness in his eyes to know that he was just being genuinely considerate and not just stubborn. Not wanting to let all of her cats out of the bag, but definitely not wanting to completely screw up her job, she quickly turned on her heel and followed him. "Please wait!"
She almost had to jog to keep up with his quick stride. Finally, she was able to grab the wrist of his free hand and stop on her heels to get his attention.
However, she didn't expect him to be that hard to stop. She didn't know if even he knew his own strength. Amy quickly found herself stumbling forward and braced herself to face plant on the floor. She'd be damned if she didn't pick the worst time to be uncharacteristically ungraceful.
The expected impact never came, however. Two arms caught her around the waist and helped her back to her feet. She wasn't really used to human contact, and promptly turned a quite intense pink in the face.
"Ma'am, are you alright?" A concerned Steve asked, pink tinging his own cheeks as well.
She pulled back quickly and huffed, annoyed with herself. "Okay, look. Just hear me out. I was assigned to help you out by Director Fury. I'm not denying that. But it's not just that!" She paused, hoping this would help her more than hurt. "Colonel Phillips would never forgive me if I didn't at least try to help you and return the favor. I've heard the stories about you, and what you've done for people, and it'd be wrong not to."
Steve's brows shot up. That did just the trick. Now he was interested. Amy almost mentally high-fived herself.
He took a step towards her, confusion and sadness lacing his features. He needed to know.
"How do you know Colonel Phillips?"
"How would I not know my own grandfather?"
And here you go. I'm not good getting things kicked off, but I think this is better than usual. Let me know what you think, love or hate. Like I said, I'm just getting into writing again now that I'm done with undergrad (see my profile), so I apologize if it seems OOC or stiff.
If I get enough go ahead to continue, it will definitely pick up. And you'll get to see about as much from Steve as you do Amy.
Until next time (hopefully!),