Disclaimer: I do not own the Avengers or any of the characters affiliated with them. If I did, there would totally be a Hawkeye/Black Widow movie in the works.
Author's Note: While I embrace constructive criticism, remember this old saying if you choose to leave a review "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"
Wow - so many of you probably thought I fell off the face of the planet...but surprise! I haven't! And I'm back with the much awaited - and hopefully much anticipated - new installment to my Vantage Point Universe. I'm sorry it took so long but I hope it's worth the wait!
If you are new to my work, this is another in an increasingly long list of stories in a series that revolves around Clint Barton. This story can be read alone, but you'll get even more out of it if you read the others. :) Though since I write the stories out of chronological order, they can also be read out of order so I leave it up to you :D To catch you up, this is the story of how Clint recruited Natasha and the immediate fallout of that decision. Phil Coulson is Clint's handler. He has a very strong brotherly relationship with Clint which originated when Phil recruited him to SHIELD during the events of my completed story "Youngest In History"
To lead off - greatest thanks to my beta and very good friend Kylen. She helped me get through some very serious moments of writers block and helped me take this story to the next level :) She is literally amazing.
Now without further gilding of the lily and with no more ado...I give you...
What No One Else Sees
Self-sacrifice is the real miracle out of which all the reported miracles grow.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Clint slowly blew out a breath, his eyes scanning over the scattered targets throughout the combat area of the range. He rolled his shoulders, feeling the satisfying and familiar weight of his quiver against his back, heavy with the weight of a dozen arrows. He adjusted the fingers of his right hand on his bow – the fingers of his left twitching in anticipation at his side.
Twelve targets. Twelve arrows.
The first and last targets were the same – a specially-designed timer mounted on the wall. It was activated by the impact of an arrow on the one-by-one-inch pad below the digital readout and deactivated in the same way.
He drew in another deep breath and blew it out. It had been three days since Phil gave him his bow back, since he'd been cleared back to active duty. After four months of uncertainty – of not knowing if he would ever do this again – Clint wanted to enjoy every second of it. He wanted to embrace every thump of his heart, every bead of sweat on his forehead, every ache in his muscles as he pushed himself harder and faster, eager to get back to the level he was at before Croatia. Before he'd stepped in front of a bullet and nearly lost his ability to fire his bow. Before he'd saved Phil's life…
That's all that mattered in the end – bow or no bow. And he'd do it again in a second.
The song coming through his earbuds faded out and he shifted, raising his left hand slightly in anticipation.
The iPod went momentarily silent as it changed tracks. He moved when the first guitar notes of AC/DC's Thunderstruck started blasting through his earbuds. His left hand had an arrow pulled and nocked in a breath, and even as it sailed towards the timer to start the round, he was already looking to the next target, already nocking another arrow. Before he even released that arrow on its flight, he was already tracking down a new target with his eyes.
He continued in this same flawless, lightning-quick pattern until he had only one arrow left. He was across the combat area now – the timer at an impossible angle. His brain whirred through the calculations even as he pulled back on the string, aimed, and fired. There was a slight twang as the arrow hit the corner of a pillar and abruptly changed trajectory. A half a beat later he heard the timer beep – the signal that it had stopped.
Clint allowed himself a smirk. He was still that good. He started jogging around, collecting his arrows, pulling the two from the timer last. He smiled in pride as he realized he'd beat his time from the last round he'd done. He had hope that soon he'd be matching his old time – the time from before Croatia.
He turned at Coulson's voice. He'd felt his handler watching him for the past fifteen minutes, knew Phil had probably come with a purpose in mind but had ended up watching silently instead.
Phil was standing in the doorway, phone in one hand, a file in the other.
"Briefing Room Two – you've got an assignment."
Clint couldn't help the wide smile that broke across his face. Finally. He'd only been back on active duty for three days, but he was itching to get back in the game. He jogged toward Phil enthusiastically, not bothering to fold his bow and stow it. He had missed the feeling of it in his hand too much to put it away when he didn't have to.
"What's the assignment?" he asked as Phil moved out into the hallway.
"Fury's doing the briefing, not me. Come on." Phil motioned him to follow and he did. Phil held out an icepack and the look in his eyes demanded Clint take it without complaint. Too excited about finally getting back into the action to make any waves, Clint accepted it without protest. He shifted his bow to his left hand and used his right to press the ice pack to his recovering shoulder.
Briefing Room Two came into view and Phil held the door so Clint could walk in ahead of him. They took their usual seats and Clint leaned over, looking down to the floor as he propped his bow against the next chair – making sure it wasn't going to trip his own chair up if he moved.
Fury was saying his name even as he blew the through the door. The sound of a file slapping onto the wood surface of the table had him looking up just in time to catch it before it slid into his lap. He arched a scolding eyebrow mockingly at Fury and adjusted the ice pack on his shoulder.
Next to him, Phil's lips quirked in silent amusement and it had Clint's own smirk widening.
"What's the job?" he directed the question at Fury, not bothering to open the file yet.
"A protection detail, in Paris. Welcome back to the rotation."
Clint's eyebrow quirked in interest. A protection detail. That was different.
"I thought my job was the other end of that kind of situation."
"That's why you're the man I need on this."
Fury nodded at Clint's file and he obediently flipped it open. Fury looked a little surprised that he didn't even offer a token protest but Clint couldn't bring himself to be his usual pain-in-the-ass self right now. Not after four months. Not when he would take whatever assignment they gave him as long as it was an assignment. Clint could be absolutely still for hours on end – but he was made to be on the move. To be doing something.
"Henri Moreau . He's been very outspoken on his opinions about the current hostilities between Lebanon and Israel. As a member of the UN Security Council, his opinion has drawn some attention. SHIELD sources in the Security Council tell me that the Lebanon War – that started just three days ago – is already a topic of discussion. We got word this morning that a contract was put out Moreau – no doubt in hopes to sway the Security Council's decision."
"What makes you think that?"
"Our resources say the contract is Israeli in origin."
Clint nodded, studying the picture of Henri Moreau. He looked to be in his mid to late fifties – hair graying. There were slight lines spreading from the corners of his eyes and similar ones creasing his forehead.
"So what's my gig? Bodyguard? For how long?"
"As long as it takes – we obviously have no solid intelligence on when someone will try to fulfill that contract."
Clint flipped through the file, pausing on a copy of Moreau's itinerary.
"He's going to a fundraising gala on the 21st," Clint noticed.
"If it were me, that's when I'd do it. He'll be in the open – there are a lot of other important people present. Even if I had to get close, it would be easy to blend into the crowd."
Coulson nodded, as if he'd known Clint would come to that conclusion.
"Then you'll be there too, running Moreau's security," Fury instructed.
Clint made a face.
"A gala, huh?"
"Yes, Agent Barton, a gala."
Clint sighed and flipped his file closed – to be studied and memorized later.
He hated formal parties.
"What's my objective?" he asked, reaching for the ice he'd discarded on the table and returning it to his shoulder.
"Best case – you'll be able to figure out what angle the assassin will come from and head them off at the pass. Worst case – you stick with him until the Security Council resolves the issue in Lebanon."
Clint nodded, starting to understand why he was being assigned this detail.
"Ultimately, Clint, you have the best shot of any SHIELD agent at spotting an assassin before they can make their move," Phil explained.
Clint's lips quirked.
"AND this is my first assignment back so you guys don't want to give me anything too strenuous."
Fury's expression didn't change, but Phil's lips quirked. Quirked like he wasn't surprised at all that Clint had deduced that – and like he wasn't ashamed to admit it was true. Clint rolled his eyes. He'd done exactly one protection detail in his tenure at SHIELD – and THAT had been a cover for an assassination.
"Get yourself cleared by medical and on a plane in the morning."
Clint rolled his eyes again at the mention of SHIELD's protocol about bullet wounds. It was a protocol he was becoming painfully familiar with – even after being cleared to active duty, any agent who had taken a bullet had to be cleared before leaving for a mission for six months following the initial injury.
"Agent Coulson will be serving as operational support on location."
Clint nodded, Fury mirrored the movement and then strode out of the room. Clint looked to Phil, eyebrow arched in question.
"It's not that we don't think you can handle a protection detail."
Clint's eyebrow arched higher and Phil sighed.
Clint shot him a doubtful look as he stood. A protection detail wasn't exactly an easy assignment, but neither was it something that would be any real challenge – it was definitely something he didn't need operational support on location for.
Phil could deny it all he wanted, but Clint knew worry when he saw it. And he'd seen it enough on Phil in the three years they'd known each other to recognize it now.
Clint couldn't blame him. After everything that had happened in the past four months, he would allow Phil his protective streak without complaint.
It was oddly comforting in its own way to know Phil – and even Fury – cared enough to worry.
"You should really start a new series – how many times have you read these?" Phil turned Clint's well- worn copy of Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers in his hands.
"I'm on my fifth." Clint snatched the book back and tossed it back into his bag, following it with Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. "What does it matter?"
"I'm just saying – you've read the Lord of the Rings series nearly five times. You've read through the Harry Potters twice already. Might be time for something new."
"Then find me something new," Clint challenged with a smirk.
Phil rolled his eyes, but started running through series options in his head. He'd try to track something that would hold Clint's interest when they got back from France. He opened his mouth to ask if Clint would consider reading something not out of a series but the words were forestalled by a knock at the door.
"What?" Clint demanded of whoever was on the other side of his bedroom door.
Phil gave him a glare for the rudeness and moved to open the door himself. Todd Bryan was arching an eyebrow on the other side.
"Todd," Phil greeted, stepping aside so the lead trainer could step into the room.
"You always bark at people when they visit?" Todd asked with a grin as he watched Clint stuff various articles of clothing into his bag.
"Only you, Bryan."
"Then I feel special." Todd smirked sarcastically. "I heard you caught an assignment, and I've got a favor to ask before you go."
"What's that?" Clint asked as he started digging through the sheets on his bed. He produced his iPod a moment later with a triumphant look in his eyes.
"Show my snot-nosed newbie recruits a thing or two on the parkour course. I've got a handful that think they're something special. Now that you're all healed up, I figure you're itching to start shaving off your time anyway. There's that thing about killing birds, so I figured, what the hell? I'd ask."
Clint glanced at Phil, not quite asking permission, but looking for an opinion. The handler almost hesitated. They had a mountain of prep work to do. Clint needed to get in to see Dan. Sleep was going to be necessary at some point, and it was already nearly dinner time. But he could see the excitement in Clint's eyes – the hope that Phil wouldn't find a reason to say it was a bad idea.
So he dipped his chin – Clint grinned.
"Sure," the archer turned to Todd and tossed his iPod into his open duffle on his bed. "I love teaching the new kids a thing or two."
Todd laughed and Phil rolled his eyes with a smile.
Never mind that Clint was probably younger than – or at least the same age as – all of the new recruits. He supposed Clint was sort of right – the new guys were "kids" to SHIELD in comparison to Clint – who was three years into an already-impressive tenure with the organization and was only barely twenty one.
"Who's that guy?" Shane Connors whispered to his friend Jared Mathews as they stood with the rest of the recruits and watched Agent Bryan walk towards them with two other men. One he knew was Agent Coulson – Director Fury's right-hand man. The second man was young – younger than them. Connors thought he remembered seeing the guy around the base the past few months, but he wasn't sure.
"Dunno." Mathews shrugged, eying the parkour course impatiently. He had the best time so far in their group, and there was only one course time faster, some guy named Barton. Mathews was sure the time was faked – no one could do this course that fast.
"Recruits! Pop tall!" Agent Bryan barked. Immediately all of the recruits straightened to attention. "You've had that record," he pointed at the letters and numbers burned into the wood of the tall arch that marked the starting line of the course – 'Barton, 2:19', "challenging you from the moment you stepped foot on this training field."
The young man standing with Agent Coulson glanced at the name and time on the course and smirked.
"I thought it was about time you saw the man himself in action. This," he motioned at the young man, "is Agent Clint Barton." Most of the recruits seemed unmoved by the announcement. "Some of you may know him better as Hawkeye."
Eyes across the entire group widened and a few jaws went slack. Connors gaped – Mathews glared. The name Clint Barton may not be on everybody's tongue at SHIELD, but the code name Hawkeye sure as hell was – especially after the rumors that the famous marksman was almost put out of the game by an unlucky round from an automatic rifle.
Clint "Hawkeye" Barton didn't look like someone who had almost been put out of the game – at least not to Connors. He looked fit, healthy, and…keyed up. Connors suddenly realized that they – all of them – were outclassed. And he couldn't help but feel a little bitter – because Barton was nothing but a kid.
Beside him, Mathews scowled. This was the guy that held the course record? He was a fucking kid. Mathews was suddenly itching to show everyone the famous Hawkeye wasn't all he was cracked up to be.
Clint stepped up to the starting line and started carefully warming up his shoulders. He did his best to ignore the fifteen men watching him like they wanted him to fail.
Coulson stepped up next to him.
"I know," Clint shot him a look. "Be careful."
"I know you've been itching to get back out here – just don't push it."
Clint rolled his eyes – in what was a more affectionate fashion than anything else – and started stretching out his arms, legs, and shoulders.
"Me? Push it?" Clint shot him an innocent grin that was, in reality, anything but innocent. "I would never."
Coulson rolled his eyes in what Clint knew was an affectionate fashion and stepped back.
Clint rolled his shoulders, and then his neck, and dropped into his ready stance. He looked to Agent Bryan, who winked and held up his stopwatch.
Clint nodded once.
Clint exploded off the starting line, eying the first obstacle – a concrete half wall followed by a full brick wall.
His mind cleared. His focus sharpened. Even as he planted his hands on the top of the half wall and vaulted himself up to plant his feet between his hands, he was already looking to the brick wall that came next. He exploded off the concrete, hooking his hands on the top of the brick wall and digging his feet into the brick. He hung there for half a breath, fingers digging into the top of the brick, knees bent and feet pressed against the vertical surface. But then he was springing upwards, planting his feet on the top of the wall and jumping forward.
After that, it was all instinct. He hadn't done this course in four months – but he didn't so easily forget things, even things he'd only done a few times, even after four months. His path through the course was instinctive – both based off what he'd done before, what he could see before him, and what he knew was coming.
Goddamnit, he loved this.
He loved exploding into jumps, using momentum and well-placed hands and feet to feel like he was defying gravity – defying physics. So many parts of his life were ruled by physics. His bow could only fire as well as it was built to. His arrows could only fly as physics allowed them too – even if Clint could push those rules a little more than anybody else. But parkour – free running – this was something he could do and feel like he was breaking all the rules.
Clint had always liked breaking rules.
In some vague part of his mind, he noticed the herd of recruits jogging alongside the course – watching him. He sensed Phil and Bryan as well – eyes pinned on him with a measure of worry. It didn't rankle him like it would have four months ago. Nearly dying – nearly losing the ability to use his arm – had brought some things into perspective.
He had people that cared about him, people that worried. He would have assumed once – that the worry was because they didn't think he could do his job. It would have been an annoyance – even insulting.
He knew now – as they watched him all but fly through the course – that wasn't what it was about. It was him they worried about, not the job. Whether he thought their priorities were in the right place or not was neither here nor there. But those were their priorities, not his, and he would let them have them in whatever order they wanted them.
Yeah, things were definitely in a different perspective now.
Speaking of different perspectives, he'd learned – after several failures to meet his previous standards over the last four months – that it was going to take time to get back to where he'd been physically before Croatia.
It didn't mean he wasn't annoyed that he wasn't going to beat his old time on the course though. He was a competitor by nature, even if he usually competed against himself.
So even as he was running across the final rooftop, he knew his time wasn't going to beat his current record – wasn't even going to match it. He leapt from the edge of the rooftop, flipped acrobatically and landed on top of the final wall. All that was left was the scaffolding.
He caught his hands on crossed bars – threading his body through the narrow opening into the heart of the structure. It was probably the most difficult entry point into the scaffolding, but it also fed into the fastest route through.
He hooked his legs around the next set of crossed bars, letting gravity pull him down and flip him beneath the bars. Momentum carried up and he reached his arms up to catch the next X.
His shoulder chose that moment to protest.
He didn't know what it was about the angle he'd moved the joint in – if he'd done it too fast or just in a different way than usual – but it hurt – bad. He was vaguely used to it – he'd learned as his arm healed that moving it the exact wrong way would bring these shots of pain. Dan and his physical therapist, Rachel, had assured him that his shoulder had healed well, but that sometimes he just might tweak it the wrong way and when he did it would hurt. It might fade over time, it might not.
There was no way to "predict" it. He was really starting to hate that phrase. It had ruled his recovery and rehab. Privately, Clint had predicted the hell out of his recovery. He had determined that he would recover – one way or another – and to hell with what anyone else could "predict."
All his predictions hadn't kept him from reaching in the exact wrong way that would make his shoulder tweak as he latched onto the final set of bars.
His shoulder protested so painfully that his left hand lost its grip and his final move – propelling his body through the final opening – didn't quite happen as he'd hoped.
He still made it through the opening, but his body twisted. Instead of hitting the ground facing forwards and being able to tuck into an easy roll over the finish line, he landed with his body still turning, promptly ending up rolling backwards over his left shoulder. He barely managed to recover enough to come to his feet after the roll – though his steps stumbled until he caught his balance.
"Son of a bitch."
"You all right?" Phil asked with forced casualness as he and Bryan approached. Clint blew out a frustrated breath and nodded.
"2:48," Bryan announced. "Still faster than the fastest of the brood over there."
Clint sighed. He'd expected his time to be slower – but it still annoyed him. He carefully stretched out his shoulder, wincing minutely at the ache that was threatening to settle in. It was no worse than when he tweaked it when he stretched the wrong way. The pain was already fading away and he rotated his shoulder to speed the process.
"And that's how this course is done, rug rats," Todd turned and announced to the team of recruits.
Mathews frowned. His best time was only 3:02. It looked like Barton had fumbled the exit of the course too – tweaked something in his arm. He had the sudden urge to prove he was just as good at this as the famous Hawkeye.
"I want to race him!" Mathews challenged suddenly. "I bet I can beat him through the course."
Next to him, Connor's eyes widened.
Agent Bryan smirked as if some part of him had been hoping the ass-wipe Jared Mathews would do something like this.
"You sure you want to do that, Mathews?" he offered as a token protest, with no real enthusiasm behind the words.
"I'm sure." Mathews glared across the short distance to Clint, who just arched an eyebrow.
He shot a glance at Phil, who tilted his head a little in acquiescence. Then he shrugged.
"What the hell – why not?"
Clint rolled his eyes a little at the premature triumph on Mathews' face. Something told him he was going to enjoy knocking this guy down a peg – or five – if the opportunity presented itself.
The entire group walked back to the finish again and Bryan stood in front of Mathews and Clint at the starting line.
"Okay, this is a head-to-head, no interfering with each other. If one of you gets to a certain point first, the other either chooses a different route or waits. Got it?"
Clint inclined his head slightly and Mathews nodded.
"All right. Get set."
They both dropped down into ready stances. Agent Bryan stepped out of the way.
Clint exploded off the starting line, a surge of adrenaline rushing through him. He loved competition. He didn't get to compete with agents besides Phil and Bryan often – hadn't since he got pulled from general training a year and a half ago. So this? This was going to be fun.
His consciousness focused once again – the rest of the world and even Mathews fading to the background. He remained aware of everything though – in the back of his mind. Though he was unconcerned about the other man's position in the course, he still knew exactly where he was the entire time. In a profession like his, he had to be aware of everything going on around him – of everyone around him – without letting it distract him from what he was doing.
Clint admitted, as they neared the end of the course, that Mathews wasn't bad. He wasn't exactly keeping pace with Clint – he was dropping behind by fractions of a second at every obstacle – but he was managing to stay relatively close.
Clint hit the final rooftop first – kicked it into high gear and was leaping to the final wall just as Mathews hit the rooftop. Clint jumped from the wall, catching his hands on the first set of crossed bars. He felt his shoulder tweak immediately.
He ground out a groan and aborted his usual route through the scaffolding. Ache settled across his shoulder and for the half a second it took him to decide on a new route, he just clung to the bars like a monkey, knees bent and boots braced on the bars below him.
Clint swung into motion just as Mathews scrambled over the top of the final wall. He pulled himself up, braced his feet where his hands had originally clung and exploded upward. He climbed up the face of the scaffolding with an ease born of years of acrobat training and a lifetime of climbing anything and everything that he could. He came to a rest at the top.
He saw Mathews launch himself into the scaffolding, but he moved slowly, carefully. Clint looked out over the top of the structure. There were bars he could use, their purpose to hold the scaffolding together.
He smirked and ran – his balance perfect on the thin metal pole. This was nothing compared to the tight rope he'd learned to walk when he was twelve. The only hitch in his plan was going to be jumping from about twenty feet instead of the normal ten.
He could do it – easily. Whether or not his shoulder would appreciate the force with which he'd be rolling over it was a different matter. When the end of the scaffolding came, he didn't have time to hesitate.
He just jumped and the ground rushed to greet him. The key was the landing. He bent his knees to absorb some of the force and threw himself forward and over his shoulder. He came to his feet with still more momentum than he wanted and had to jog a step to slow himself down. He turned in time to see Mathews swinging from the last section of bars and climbing through to the ground.
Bryan stepped up next to him. Clint arched an eyebrow in question.
"Goddamned shoulder tweaked when I hit the scaffolding – I lost time there."
"You good?" Phil asked carefully.
Clint nodded, watching Mathews scowl at him as he joined the rest of the recruits.
"Nice effort, Mathews," Bryan placated. Mathews' scowl deepened.
"I want to race him again."
"Getting your ass kicked once is enough for now. I'm sure Barton won't mind doing it again at a later date. He's got a mission to prep for." Bryan clapped Clint on the right shoulder and gave him a grin. He continued more quietly, so the recruits wouldn't over hear. "I've been waiting for you to come put that kid in his place."
"Glad I could oblige." Clint grinned.
"You take care of that shoulder and be careful in France, okay?"
Clint nodded and looked to Phil, who was had already started moving towards the base.
"You've got to go see Dan before dinner."
Clint sighed. He liked Dan – he really did – but he was so sick of the infirmary. He followed Phil towards the base, trying to decide if he was going to lie about the ache that had settled in his shoulder.
Dan looked up from his data pad when Barton and Phil walked into the infirmary.
"I was expecting you two earlier." His smile of greeting took any real heat out of the words.
"Todd invited him to show up some recruits on the parkour course," Phil explained.
Dan's smile widened into a full-fledged smirk, though a touch of concern clouded his eyes.
"Bet you showed them a thing or two."
Barton smirked in return and moved to sit on the exam table without complaint.
"I'll leave you two to it." Phil met Barton's eyes. "Meet you in the mess in thirty?"
Barton nodded and Phil left, already answering his ringing cell phone.
"How was your time?" Dan asked as he motioned for Barton to take his shirt off. Barton obliged even as he answered.
Dan rolled his eyes as he stood from his rolling chair and moved to inspect Barton's shoulder. Slow for Barton was probably still faster than anyone else.
"Slow for you? Or slow for the rest of the world – there is a difference I'm told."
Barton smirked arrogantly and it made Dan smile – he had been hoping for it after all. After four months of watching Barton struggle through rehab – face the true reality of the damage done to his shoulder – it was high time the kid had something to brag about.
"Rotate for me."
Barton obediently started moving his shoulder this way and that. Dan kept one hand on the front of Barton's shoulder, resting over the thick scar from surgery, and used the other to guide the archer's arm in the direction he wanted it to go.
"You've got some inflammation – and a little heat. You tweak it?"
"Same motion as usual cause it?"
Barton nodded again. Dan sighed.
"How's it feel now?"
"Aches a little."
Dan nodded. If Barton was admitting to anything at all, then he had to be telling the truth. While he may have a tendency to lie like a criminal to hide an injury all together, he rarely – when he admitted to injury – lied about severity. It was an odd little paradox but Dan appreciated it in moments like this – when it was working in his favor.
"You know the drill – ice it and rest it for the night."
Dan picked his shirt up from the table and handed it back to him.
"Look, kid…" Dan hesitated. Barton was so hard to predict sometimes. Some days he would take words of concern and caution with a small nod and an appreciative look in his eyes. Sometimes he leveled a frustrated glare for being told something he already knew.
Dan likened it to a game of Russian Roulette. Either the gun fired empty or he got a bullet to the brain. A dramatic comparison maybe, but he needed a taste of Barton's attitude like he needed a bullet to the brain.
He'd rather do without it.
He gauged Barton's eyes when he looked at him. He looked agreeable enough, but then again, Barton always looked agreeable – until he wasn't.
"I know I green-lighted you to return to the roster, but you're still healing. And you'll be healing for a while. Just be careful, okay?"
"Relax, Doc, I'm always careful."
Dan arched an eyebrow doubtfully. Barton grinned and rolled his eyes.
"Okay, so I'm mostly careful…sometimes."
It was Dan's turn to roll his eyes. He watched Barton jerk his t-shirt over his head and then gripped his right shoulder.
"I mean it, kid. Take care of yourself and take care of that shoulder. Do your stretches, ice it if it aches, and don't push it if you don't have to."
Barton dipped his head in acknowledgment and granted Dan a short, but appreciative glance as he stood and headed to the door.
Dan smiled as he signed off on Barton's chart. Looked like the gun had clicked empty. He could sit back and relax now until he had to pull the trigger again.
End of Chapter One
And here we go! Next story finally up and running :) This one is LONG and full of a lot of awesome things (at least I think they're awesome lol) I hope everyone enjoys reading as much as I enjoyed writing.
I'll be trying to post everyday - but I'm leaving for a trip to NY with my husband (late anniversary celebration) next weekend and don't know how my internet access is gonna be. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up the posting at least from my phone :)
Get ready for a fun ride!
You all know I love reviews - and it has been SOOO long since I've had something new out that I'm sure you all can't wait to write me one...right? RIGHT? :D
Here's your preview of Chapter 2
The archer came awake with a gasp, jack-knifing and grasping at his left arm, now resting limply across his lap. His breathing hit a new level of frantic – near hyperventilation – and Phil reached forward to grasp his shoulder.
"Clint! Hey, easy! What's wrong?"
Clint's right hand was suddenly in a vice grip around Phil's forearm – tight enough that he was certain it would leave a bruise.
"I can't…" Clint forced a strained inhalation, eyes squeezing closed. "I can't feel my left arm."