At first, he would not allow himself to think of her. He would avoid the subject. But after awhile, he gave up and let the memories drown him. He thought of her shooting at him while he cowered behind his shield. He thought of when her and Howard Stark had been crazy enough to fly him behind enemy lines, just so he could find out if his friend was alive. The memories choked him, but he forced them to continue. He didn't have the strength to move on, not yet. Maybe not ever. And maybe its a good thing he didn't.
When S.H.I.E.L.D had found the Captain in the ice, they immediately started looking for Peggy Carter. Why? Because she was the only other human thought to have been injected with the Super Soldier Serum.
When the Hydra spy had intended to destroy all the syringes containing the serum, he had missed one. It had fallen in front of Peggy, and she grabbed it and hid it in her coat. So one needle that held the serum survived, but she didn't tell anyone. She thought that if men would go to such great lengths to destroy it, how much greater would the lengths be to steal it? No, this would be for her. And so she kept it.
She had already planned when she would inject herself with it. She would take a Leave of Absence for a few days, and go to a friends house. There, she would become the first female Super Soldier. She only hoped she wouldn't become extremely muscled, like Steve had.
Her plan went well, and, with the aid of her friend, she injected herself with the serum.
It may have been awful for Steve, but it was much less painful for him than for Peggy. Steve had had penicillin as well as morphine, Peggy had not. But she was strong, and willed herself through it.
She became a Super Soldier. And, thanks be to God, she still looked like herself. But she wouldn't tell anyone, not even Steve. Not yet, anyways. She also wouldn't tell anyone about a prediction Erskine had made. He had said that, since Steve's cells would constantly regenerate, it would basically turn him immortal. He would forever remain the handsome, kind-hearted gentleman he'd been when he was injected. And now she would forever be the beautiful, sharp-witted lady she'd been when she'd injected herself.
So S.H.I.E.L.D searched. And yet, even with the high-tech equipment they had, they didn't find her till a few months after the Loki incident.
She had been hiding in a remote village in South Africa, somewhere she wouldn't easily be found. But find her they did, and so they brought her in. She had been out of touch with modern society for a very long time, and hadn't heard when they'd found Steve in the ice.
"What do you want with me?" she asked Director Fury. His reply was solemn.
"I believe you know a certain Steve Rogers. And I also believe that you were injected with the same serum he was."
She was stunned for a moment, but recovered.
"Knew him, would be the correct statement. And you believe correctly, sir. I injected myself with the serum."
It was Fury's turn to be surprised, but being the director of a top secret agency means hiding everything, including emotions. So he calmly asked her:
"What do you mean, "You injected yourself"?"
Peggy was clearly annoyed that her peaceful life had been disturbed, and that this man was re-opening old wounds that had never fully healed, but she replied:
"A syringe full of serum fell in front of me when a spy from Hydra detonated a bomb, so I kept it and used it on myself."
Fury did not hide the look of disgust on his face.
"You do realize that that syringe could've been used to re-create the formula?" He asked.
"Of course I did. But seeing how much trouble one went to to destroy it, I realized that others would go to even more trouble to thieve it or other such things. So I used it on myself."
The Director was clearly upset, but continued with the reason for her being there.
"Miss Carter, I think you will enjoy the news I'm about to give you. A while back we found a very large, unidentified aircraft on a small, frozen island. In that aircraft was Steve Rogers. He was frozen, but alive. And although I cannot tell you where he is at present, I can assure you that he is well."
At this, Peggy sank to the floor in shock. All those years she had spent thinking he was dead, he had actually been frozen in ice, alive. Her heart felt like it was going to burst she was so overjoyed.
"Excuse me, I need a few moments." She said.
The Director understood and said "Of course."
She was shown to a bedroom, where she could collect her thoughts. As she sat down, she studied her surroundings. It was a small room, just big enough for one person. In one corner was a bed, and in another, a small nightstand. There was an attached bathroom, and everything was painted a dull grey. But all she could really concentrate on at that moment, was the fact that the man she had fallen in love with seventy years ago, was alive.
For a few seconds, she acted as if she were a child again. She danced around in her room, she hugged the pillow on the bed. But then she regained her maturity, and, after fixing her composure, she walked out of the room.
In the hall, she bumped into a young woman with flame-red hair. After mumbling a few apologies, the woman seemed to appear startled. As she hurried on, Peggy wondered what had surprised the girl, but brushed it off.
She wanted to get out of there and look for Steve, so she found Fury and asked where the exit was. The amused look on the Director's face aggravated her, but she kept calm. However, his answer was a bit more frustrating.
"You think we're just gonna let you walk out of here like nothing happened?"
"Well since nothing of importance happened, then yes."
The smirk on the his face told her that no, they weren't going to let her go easily. Now, being a member of the military does mean that you learn some self defense, and because she was extremely agitated by now, she used some of it on the guards and started running.
After running around some halls, she darted into a room, and locked the door behind her. Turning around, she was stunned to see the same red-haired girl she'd bumped into earlier sitting on a bed. Upon second glance, Peggy noticed that this could have been the same bedroom she'd been in earlier, except for a few personal touches the occupant had made. Speaking of, the flame haired girl stood up and spoke.
"What are doing in my bedroom?"
"I'm hiding from the Director, who is not allowing me to leave."
At this, the redhead smirked and replied:
"Yeah, well that isn't gonna get you anywhere. In fact, the only thing stopping those guards from darting in here is the fact that they probably think your'e a friend of mine, and that springing you would get them severely injured. The only way you can get out of here if Fury doesn't want you to, is if you sneak out. Which, I might add, is almost impossible."
At this, Peggy felt her hopes drop. "So I'm a prisoner, then?"
The girl smirked again, and said "Pretty much. Unless, of course, you sneak out, like I said."
Now it was Peggy's turn to smirk. "You also said it was impossible."
"No, I said it was almost impossible. I can help you, if you'd like."
Now she was confused. First of all, because this stranger was being unnaturally friendly, and secondly, because she appeared to be eager to help. But, because she did want to "escape," she accepted the girls offer. Though not until she introduced herself.
"My name is Peggy Carter, and I will accept your offer." She said, and held her hand out to shake.
The woman smiled, shook hands with Peggy, and said "Natasha Romanoff."
The plan was simple, yet daring. They would dodge guards until they got to a certain room, where they would climb into the vents and out the side of the building.
Peggy was nervous, but Natasha reassured her that so long as she followed directions, they would both be able to get outside. Once there, they would hot-wire one of S.H.I.E.L.D's cars and speed away.
The first part of their plan went perfectly. If anyone saw them, they were either unaware of the situation or were too afraid of Natasha to alert Fury. It was the climbing through the vents part that went awry.
Fury had, of course, been watching Peggy in the central control room, seeing what she would do. But when he saw her and Natasha crawl into the vent system, he alerted all guards to try and find out where they were headed. Luckily, Nat had been two steps ahead. She'd made sure to re-route all the cameras so no one could see them. After a few minutes of crawling, they at last made it out into clean air.
There was no time to stop, however. As soon as their feet were on the ground, they were running. Soon they reached a large warehouse, where Natasha keyed in a code and a garage-like door opened. Jumping into one of the many cars parked there, she leaned under the dash and punched in some numbers on a hidden panel. The car started up, and Peggy hopped into the passenger side. As they quickly drove away, the Director put his head down. Agent Romanoff had outwitted him, again.
When they had been driving for a few minutes, Peggy spoke up.
"Why did you seem so shaken when I bumped into you before?"
Natasha laughed and said "I know a lot more about you than you think."
Peggy wondered how this was possible when she hadn't known this woman longer than two hours.
Seeing the confused expression on British woman's face, she continued.
"I know Steve personally, and he talks about you all the time. He keeps a picture of you with him wherever he goes."
Again, Peggy felt her hopes lifted. "Do you know where he is now?" She asked.
Natasha smiled at the woman next to her. "He's probably at home, in Avengers Tower."
And again, the British lady was confused. Fortunately, in the half hour drive, Natasha explained what had happened a few months back, so when they pulled up in front of the now-restored building, Peggy was completely up to date.
Natasha had already planned how she would introduce the Captain to his long-lost girlfriend. First, she would have Peggy sit on the couch and talk to Pepper while she went to get Steve. Then, Pepper would leave to "get some water," and Ba Da Bing! The Captain would see his fair maiden for the first time in decades. It was dirt simple, but almost foolproof. And so she put it into action.
"Pepper, I have someone you need to meet!" She called as she stepped out of the elevator onto the top floor. Pepper came out from behind the bar, where she was mixing a special blend of alcohol for Tony. When she saw the beautiful lady, she immediately recognized her and, running up, gave her a hug.
"Steve is going to be enthralled! How are you still young looking?" The orange-haired girl asked. She didn't get an answer before Natasha pulled her away for a moment. Giving her a bracelet, the assassin said "When you feel a jolt, get up and get some water or something. I don't care what you do, just leave." Pepper instantly understood, and nodded her head. Returning to Peggy, she suggested that they sit down and talk for a while.
While Pepper was leading Peggy to the couch, Natasha went to find Steve.
Him and all the guys were in the theater, watching some old footage of the Captain. Smirking to herself, Nat quickly shut off the ancient projector and turned on the lights. Protests were heard from the men as she stood in front of them.
"Steve, come with me. Now." she ordered. Clint, Bruce, Tony and Thor all looked at the Captain. Not in the mood for a dogfight, Steve stood up and followed the redhead out. He asked where they were going, but all he got was silence.
Natasha pushed a button on the bracelet she was wearing, which would alert Pepper to move out.
Pepper felt the jolt from the bracelet, and thought of how opportune a time it was. She flawlessly relayed an excuse to go get some drinks from the fridge as Peggy paused in her story.
In the hall, she slipped Natasha the bracelet, unnoticed, and continued on as if nothing had happened.
When they came to the doorway of the living area, the redhead motioned with her hand for him to enter, then left.
As Steve cautiously entered the room, Peggy stood and began to explore the place, her back to him. She didn't notice him at first, but he recognized her the instant she'd started walking around.
"Peggy?" He asked, afraid that she was a dream.
She whirled around, startled by his voice.
"Steve?" She said, barely above a whisper.
He walked towards her, and she to him. Both felt that the other was an illusion, just a hallucination of some sort... Until they touched each others hands. Peggy's eyes filled with tears, a smile on her face, as he picked her up and spun her around. Oh, how she'd missed him. When he set her down, they were both laughing. Steve asked the first question, a smile still on his face.
"How are you still alive? And...Young?"
She laughed and told him the story about how she'd grabbed the serum and kept it.
"I knew that it was meant for me." She concluded.
He couldn't contain himself any longer, so he bent down and kissed her. She smiled when they pulled away, and said:
"You don't know how long I've waited for that."
Steve laughed, and picked her up again. This time, though, he started running around with her on his shoulder.
"Steve! Put me down! Steve!" She laughed. When he finally set her down, they noticed they weren't alone anymore. The whole gang had joined them. Tony was the first to comment.
"I propose a toast, to The Star Spangled Man and his girlfriend. JARVIS, get some champagne, will ya?" He asked the AI.
When the glasses had been passed out, Tony said "To the Captain and Miss America!"
Later, a small party was held between the team, who were all genuinely happy for "America's pair," as Tony had dubbed them. There was music, of course, and Peggy finally got to teach Steve how to dance. When everyone saw them, they all decided to join in. Tony with Pepper, Natasha with Clint, Jane with Thor, and even Bruce danced, just not to the partner songs.
When everyone started getting tired,(around two a.m,) they decided to call it a night. Suddenly Peggy realized she was far from her home in South Africa. Would she have to stay in a motel? she wondered. But when Natasha called her from the elevator, saying to come down to the women's floor, she didn't worry. After giving Steve a good night kiss, she ran to join the other three women.
In the elevator, Pepper told her that her bedroom was the second door on the corridor's left wall, next to Jane's and opposite Natasha's.
"JARVIS ordered some pajamas and other clothes for you. They'll be in your dresser."
"How did it know my size?" she asked, confused once more.
"He analyzed you and determined it. I picked them out, though, if it's any consolation." Pepper replied.
Peggy smiled, and headed off to her bedroom. After changing into the bedclothes and climbing under the covers, she thought over the day again. She knew she'd found her family now.
Three months after their reunion, Steve proposed to Peggy, who gladly accepted. The wedding took place a month later, on January twentieth, and amid friends and family, they exchanged vows. Children were not possible, due to some effects of the serum, but neither of them really minded.
When the rest of the team (minus Bruce) got married, they changed the top floor of the tower into the main living floor. The bedrooms were enlarged, and even Bruce got to have a space up there.
Peggy became one of the Avengers, because even though she didn't look it, she was only a tiny bit less stronger than Steve. And for the time, everyone was happy.
What the team didn't know, was that a girl named Deidra had also been infused with the serum, she just didn't know it. She was destined to become part of the team, but that's another story...
A/N: So, whaddya think? I mean, it's mostly fluff but you were warned! Also, at the end I hinted at a story that's in the process, check back with me often so you're the first to know its out! And...ya know...might you leave a review? Please? I like getting reviews, even though I don't get a whole lot.
Anywhoo, Thanks for reading!