Harry stood by the wall in the room that was full of scientists and even a couple of doctors. The center of the room held a table, one which held a fragile burden at the moment. However, if the stories he had heard from Tony during the day were to be believed, Captain America was in no way fragile. Though, Harry was certain, from the way that Tony animatedly spoke of the famous Captain America, that Tony was, he had heard, a "fanboy" of Steve Rogers and yet, Harry had seen some bitterness when Tony had talked about the Captain. It had been a full two weeks since the events that had taken place in New Mexico.
Harry had been called in from sparring practice with Clint Barton to the room that SHIELD was keeping Rogers in. He had been sparring with Natasha, as he had taken to sparring with her during his time with Tony before he had gone to New Mexico, but Natasha had gone on another mission. Apparently, the doctors and scientists that had been monitoring him were certain that he would wake up in the next few hours and needed his opinion on something.
So far, no one had paid any attention to Harry, though he didn't blame them. The captain was starting to move about on the table and he had yet to open his eyes. As Harry still had his sparring clothes on, which were a pair of loose track pants and light, flexible shield top, he felt vaguely underdressed in this room. He had just enough time to grab a towel and water bottle before following Coulson to the super secret room, which that was how Tony had put it when Harry had told him.
He padded over to the table and some of the scientists clearly had heard of what he was capable of when they inched away from him. The ice was all but melted off of the captain's body, but he was still clearly cold. The man was shivering and his eyes were flickering, as if he wanted to open them but was too tired to. Most of the scientists had stepped back by now, allowing the doctor to take over, now that the captain was all thawed out. Harry glanced around the room, looking for an unimportant object that he could transfigure into a blanket. His eyes alighted on a tray of plastic cups with a pitcher of water near the table. When he summoned the cup to him, everyone else in the room looked startled and awed, except the doctor. Knowing someone could do something was one thing and seeing it was wholly another thing.
Taking a few steps back, Harry quickly transfigured the cup into a warm quilt and folded it and kept it in his arms for now. The doctor was busy taking Roger's vitals, so Harry walked up to the captain to see how he looked. The SHIELD doctor assigned to this case glanced up and nodded at him in acknowledgement then went back to work. He seemed like he had seen weirder stuff than what Harry had just done.
"Steve?" Harry questioned softly, not wanting to spook the man. From what Tony had told him, the soldier had had a rough ending. Harry knew enough not to cast a warming spell on him: he didn't want to startle Rogers. As he was still shivering, though he wasn't hypothermic by any means, Harry did just cast a light drying off spell which would dry Rogers up. He watched as most the moisture from the ice disappeared from the man and then wrapped the thick quilt around him.
Harry then returned his gaze to Steve's face. The soldier looked exhausted and pale, which Harry figured was to be expected as Steve had been on ice for 70 years. Though with the addition of the blanket, his shivering had tapered off. He probably hadn't really slept and had been in a coma while the serum kept him alive. The man blinked at him then abruptly fell back asleep.
The next time Harry saw Steve Rogers was a couple days later, while Harry was walking through the hallways of SHIELD to get the debriefing room. Fury and Coulson had yet to finish debriefing him about everything that had happened in the last few weeks. SHIELD even knew about Harry rescuing Bruce; Harry supposed that they had agents everywhere.
As he was walking past the section of this facility that had temporary living quarters, he heard his name called.
Harry turned around to locate who had called his name and came face to face with Steve Rogers. The man looked a lot better than he had when Harry had first seen him. He was wearing loose fitting clothes, which meant that he was going down to work out. Harry hadn't seen him since he had been thawed out and he had heard that the doctor and scientists had been running tests on him. To which purpose Harry didn't know, but then, he was sure he wouldn't understand all of the scientific slang that they used.
"Hello, Captain. It's nice to see you, all alive looking and it's just Harry. At least, that's what my friends call me. Agent Potter sounds so serious," Harry commented, grinning, while still looking him over for anything out of the ordinary. He did see some grief in Steve's eyes and that, he guessed was to be expected too. If Harry had been in ice for 70 years, he would have missed his friends and lost some too.
"Ah, they told me that you were the one with me when they thawed me out. Thanks for the quilt. You've only just met me. Are people in the 21st century so like you, friendly?" Steve asked curiously.
"I would like to think so, but that's just wishful thinking. I would like to be your friend, if you're okay with that." Harry responded, with an easy grin.
"Sure, and my friends call me Steve, not Captain. Bucky sure didn't call me captain when..." Steve trailed off, with a sorrowful look in his eyes and turned his gaze towards the ground. Harry walked the last couple of inches between them and put his hand on Steve's shoulder and squeezed in reassurance. Steve turned his gaze back, with a shaky answering smile.
"Well, you've made at least one friend in this century!" Harry finally said, "If you need me, I'll be right at your side."
At that, Steve finally smiled for real and Harry could see how Tony had been all excited when Harry had told him the news.
The third time, Harry met up with Steve Rogers, he was in his hawk form flying above him, watching him run. It was early in the morning on a pleasant Wednesday morning and it was not as busy since it was past rush hour. Harry had wanted to make sure that the soldier was doing okay, with the reasoning behind that was for the Captain to not realize there was someone tailing him. Harry had guessed that SHIELD had done a shitty job of letting the man know that he had been in the ice for 70 years, as Rogers was running like he wanted to be anywhere with Peggy Carter right now instead of in the 21st century.
Harry could very much sympathize with Steve right now. He had had to learn all about the ways that muggles in this year do things and all that technology too. From what Harry had picked up from Coulson, Steve had gone running each morning and had always ended up in Brooklyn.
However, as he was flying this morning, his magic kept reacting to some foreign touch of magic. It had been happening every morning with quiet intensity. Every so often, he would feel a little touch by another's magic and it didn't feel like any wizard he had known. It almost had the same feeling that Loki's magic did, just the feeling of foreign magic that it had. It felt cold, almost like death which really gave him a bad feeling. He had never felt that kind of magic before, though, he supposed that the magic that brought him back to life felt like that kind of magic.
As Harry flew above Steve, Harry kept an eye out for anything suspicious. Though, he doubted that anything would happen, as the public did not know that Captain America had been found alive. So, he took the time to try out more fun flying while still flying on the slight breeze.
He had noticed that every couple minutes on this morning's run, the man had taken to watching the hawk that was following him. Harry would have said that Steve had definitely noticed that the same hawk had been trailing him each morning on his runs. Though he probably had no idea that Harry was the hawk.
On this morning it looked like Steve had a different destination in mind; his run had taken him directly to Central Park. Harry had taken a liking to the park, as it was like a small island sanctuary within the city. He followed Rogers to a bench that was on a little hill that overlooked the park. Harry alighted on the bench, while Steve sat down on the bench to take a breather.
Steve thought it was rather odd for a hawk to follow him on his daily morning runs each day. He had taken to seeing if the bird was still following him throughout his run today and each time he looked, the bird seemed to meet his gaze, as if smiling at him. He had never encountered something like an intelligent bird back in the war. He wondered if all hawks were this smart in the 21st century or maybe SHIELD had trained it. At least watching it do what he supposed must have been fun little flying tricks had taken his mind off of everything, missing Peggy, Bucky and the rest of the guys, and being in a whole new century with new technology.
When the hawk had landed on the same bench where he had sat down, Steve was beginning to feel a little worried about what it might mean. After a couple of minutes of staring at the bird and having the bird stare right back, he started a little when the hawk took off into the trees. Steve relaxed and went back to watching the different families and people walk around the park.
"So you like the park too?" Steve startled at the now familiar voice and turned around. When he spotted Harry, it was with a curious look. The other man had come from the same exact spot that the hawk had flown off to. "Hey Harry, I didn't see you come this way." Harry's reaction to that questioning statement made Steve more curious. He seemed sheepish, as if Steve had caught him red-handed at something. However, Steve didn't seem to know what he had caused that expression.
"Oh, I came here by way of Stark Tower. I've been living there for the past couple of weeks. So, what makes you enjoy the park?"
"It... uh... I can tune out the rest of the world here. It's helped me to acclimate to the whole new century thing." he replied, quietly, "Stark Tower, that's where Anthony Stark is, right?"
"I can definitely understand that. When I came to... well that's a different story altogether." Harry responded, coming to sit on the same bench, "Yep, Anthony Stark or just Tony, is the son of Howard Stark and didn't you know Howard back during the war?"
"Yes, I did know him. We are... or were good friends. He helped me create the armor and shield." Steve replied. To Harry, Steve seemed to close down at the reality of knowing he won't ever see his friends again. "I'll have to meet his son sometime. Is he like his dad, an inventor?
Harry grinned at that. "He is quite the inventor and though he can be very hard to be friends with, he is a good person. You'll have to meet him in person to know whether father and son are alike." Harry noticed that the squirrels and other land rodents were coming back out in the park. It seems his temporary time as a hawk in this area had really freaked out the squirrels. "Though, on a personal note from me, I wouldn't mention Howard to Tony. They didn't have such a good relationship," he added.
"Oh, I would have thought they would have a good family relationship. Howard was a good friend to me. Do you know why?"
"I don't know the specifics. You'll have to ask Tony later, once you get to know him."
To Harry, Steve seemed to close down at the reality of knowing he won't ever see his friends again. The other man became lost in thought for a couple of minutes.
"Harry?" Harry turned to look at Steve when he said his name. Steve seemed curious about something and Harry suspected that after this chat, Steve would figure out one of his secrets. The captain had seemed like a smart person, after all, from what Harry had read from his files and from what Tony had told him.
"Does SHIELD have trained birds?" Steve asked him.
"Trained birds... Well, in a manner of speaking, they do. Though, there's only one that I know of," Harry replied. Coulson had said to keep an eye on the captain, but not to do anything else, like tell Steve about himself. Given that touch of foreign magic that he had felt this morning, he figured that something big was about to happen in the next few weeks. Which Harry assumed to mean that Fury would put together the Avengers Initiative and then they would be working together.
"In a manner of speaking? What does that mean?" Steve inquired, still looking at Harry intently.
Harry glanced around their area, making sure there were no people around. He also wordlessly put up wards around the bench, just in case. "So you know how I said that I had come from Stark Tower? Well, I kind of didn't?"
"What does that mean, you didn't come from Stark Tower?" Steve asked.
Harry glanced at him, with a meaningful look and then stepped away from the bench, though not too far away. Walking on the ground in hawk form was really undignified.
"Ready?" he asked Steve.
"Ready for what?" the other man said with a bewildered look and Harry watched as his jaw dropped as Harry shifted into his hawk form.
"Harry? That's you?" Steve said after a couple of moments of complete awe. Harry hopped over and jumped onto the bench and gave a quiet kree of agreement. Steve started to reach out a hand then pulled it back. "May I?"
Harry nodded and then walked/hopped the last few inches and butted his head against Steve's hand.
After a couple minutes of quiet petting, Harry jumped off of the bench and shifted back to human form.
"So that was you following me the past couple of mornings?"
"Yes, that has been me. I figured that SHIELD would have done a bad job of cluing you in to this whole thing." Harry gestured to the city, clearly meaning 'new time'. "I saw the whole thing a couple of days ago and let's just say my opinion was correct. They did a shitty job."
"Thank you for that. I guess SHIELD doesn't really have any rule book on introducing soldiers who were encased in ice for 70 years being found, do they?"
"No, and let me just say that I know what you're going through. I had to adjust to a whole new culture and technology, too."
"How, you're just a civilian?" Steve questioned.
"It's a long story. Are you sure?" Harry asked.
"Yes, I do." the other man stated.
"Very well. It all started in 1980..." Harry started.
"So you're a wizard..." Steve asked, though it looked like he couldn't quite believe it. He still had an awed expression on his face from hearing Harry tell of how he defeated Voldemort. "That's how you can shift form. What other things can you do?"
"Yep," Harry grinned and thought of a possible spell that he could do. He pulled out the Elder wand and whispered "Expecto Patronum," and out jumped Prongs. Harry heard a gasp next to him and he turned to look. Steve's gaze was transfixed with awe. The buck ran forward, looking for danger and then finding none, trotted over to Steve.
While Steve was staring at Prongs, Harry's cell phone rang. Checking the caller id, Harry excused himself from the bench and walked a couple feet away.
"Coulson, what's up?" he asked.
"Agent, we need you to come in. We'll send someone to look out for Steve, if you feel strongly about that." Coulson replied. Harry chuckled, it seems that SHIELD had eyes everywhere.
"Sure. Is it urgent?" Harry asked.
"No, but we'll need you before this evening." the senior agent responded.
"Okay, got it. See you then." Harry hung up and then went back to join Steve.
"Looks like I need to leave for SHIELD." Harry told the other man.
"Okay. It was very fun talking with you, Harry" Steve replied, "And it was nice knowing that the hawk turned out to be you."
"Again, if you need anything, you can call me at any time."
"Thanks." Steve said, with a smile.
Before he left, Harry whispered the counter spell, "Finite Incantatem" and then apparated on the spot.
Harry appeared at the door to the operations room in SHIELD HQ, where Clint was waiting too. Harry walked up and opened the door and walked in. He saw Coulson behind the desk and Clint was also in the room.
"Harry, it's been awhile."
"Clint, no" Harry groaned at the archer's attempt at humor. "I saw you yesterday."
Coulson smiled and then started the meeting. "Harry, we need your expertise on a project of ours."
"What kind of project? Is this one of your 'super secret' projects?" Harry asked Coulson.
"It's in one of our other facilities in north New York. It's called Project Pegasus. Clint will pilot a quinjet to your destination." Coulson replied, "We just need your opinion on the object in the facility.
"Okay, got it. When do we leave?" Harry asked.
"You leave as soon as you can." Coulson said.
Harry stood up and glanced at Clint. "Well, let me grab my travel pack and then I'll be ready."
"I'll be on the helipad," Clint commented.
Harry sauntered out of the operations room and apparated back to his quarters in Stark Tower.
"Jarvis, will you tell Pepper and Tony that I'll be away?"
"Of course, Harry. Have a good trip."
"Thanks. I don't know when I'll be back, so could you tell them that I said goodbye?"
"Yes, I can indeed do that."
Harry grabbed his travel pack and then apparated back to SHIELD and to their helipad. His first mission with SHIELD; he was rather excited!