We’ve Been Jammed
January 13, 2017
“I am so sorry to cancel on you Darcy.”
Steve did sound full of honest regret. And it was only their second date. It’s not like Darcy had spent an entire week tweaking every little detail and planning her outfit. Right. She knew long before she even met Steve what his job was and is, his dedication to it – it was part of his appeal to her. She could also recognize that the situation in Atlanta merited the Avengers intervening.
The overturned semi-trailer of drugs? That was on local and state cops. Maybe the DEA.
The subsequent outbreak of overdoses and drug-related crime? See above.
Super-fucked up, high-as-the-space-station civies stumbling onto an abandoned HYDRA base and finding a cache of alien weapons? That was mostly on SHIELD v 2.0 and probably the national guard.
It was when the civilians turned most of the weapons over to a local crime ring and things escalated into a Chiturai-powered riot with sour edges of racism and some kind of HYDRA tank thing that the Avengers got called in. It was all aboveboard and in perfect compliance with the regulations that Darcy had been working hard to establish for Yinsen. The Governor had personally called Tony – who promptly had him rerouted to Darcy – to request assistance.
It still sucked.
“It’s fine, Steve.” She managed not to sigh. Barely. She had purchased new lipstick for the date. Guaranteed not to transfer. She planned on lots of making out, goddammit. “Just try to keep your destruction of private property to a minimum on your first time out. I mean, save people first, obviously, but the new PR crew would love a nice photo opportunity where the city you save isn’t on fire afterward.”
Natasha’s voice was clear in the background. “It’s as if she knows you, Steve.”
“Don’t you need to focus on flying, Nat?” His grumble was adorable. It made Darcy even madder that the date got canceled.
“I can multi-task.”
There was more indistinct grumbling and a door clicking and then Steve’s voice sounded hollow, like he was speaking through a tin can. “Sorry. Again. Sorry. We can reschedule though, right?”
“Where are you?” Darcy was trying to picture the quinjet. She’d only been in one once, and she couldn’t imagine Steve had left the cockpit to find privacy. The back would be filled with Bucky, Sam, Vision, and Wanda – considerably less privacy than with the Black Widow.
“Doesn’t matter,” he replied quickly. “Are you free tomorrow night?”
She laughed, delighted. “Steve, there is no way you are going to be able to leave the tower tomorrow night. Even if you guys finish up down there and get away from the media circus that is going to be covering this – you have paperwork to fill out here. And normally I’d say skip it, but I am the one who actually needs that paperwork, so…”
Proof that Captain America was eager to be with her was heady. Not that she didn’t already have indicators. On Monday he had dropped by her office to confirm date number two with flowers, a heartfelt note, and a gorgeous smile. On Wednesday afternoon he brought her coffee before the situation update on Atlanta – prior to alien weapon discovery. On Thursday morning, he had been lingering suspiciously in the lobby when she arrived for work and walked her up to her office. She had a bet going via email with Jane over how long it would take her tiny staff to get used to seeing so much pretty on the reg. Jane had put twenty bucks on two weeks. Darcy planned to use the money to buy a pair of silk stockings. She figured they’d look great draped over Steve’s arms.
Of course, Atlanta had put a kink in those plans too. Their dating milestones were going to be all screwed up. With the reschedule, she’d either have to wait another week before convention stated she could tackle Steve to the ground and let him know how much she admired his values, or she’d have to agree with herself that Steve was worth feeling a little slutty.
Every day made her more convinced that sexual restraint was an outdated social construct.
“Yeah. Sorry. Again.” He laughed quietly. “Tony is always calling me an old man. At my age you’d think I’d be better at this.”
“At thirty? Yeah, you’d think so.” Darcy glanced at her computer for their estimated time of arrival. Steve would probably want to go over battle plans or whatever with the others before they landed. “Look, I know you have to go soon, but I do want to reschedule. I mean, I’ll have to cancel the five-piece string ensemble and the moonlight carriage ride, but I’m sure I can come up with something.”
“Five piece? Seems like the carriage would be crowded.” She could hear Steve’s smile over the phone.
“Hmm. You think? I was just going to sit in your lap. But, alas, my plans have been foiled.” He did laugh then, and Darcy felt her own smile stretching. “I’ll see you when I see you. No worries, Steve Rogers.”
“Okay. Sounds good.”
“Hey,” she bit her lip with sudden inspiration, “try to make sure Jimmy’s face stays pretty.”
“You makin’ eyes at my pal?”
“Nah. But I can’t start my porn empire if my number one earner gets deformed. Now that I think of it, try to keep Sam’s ass safe too.”
Steve’s laughter was the perfect way to end the call. Darcy hung up, a smile on her face, and turned back to her blinking office phone line. The work of a mediator was never done.
“Yes, Senator,” she said, answering the call that had been on hold the longest. “I am sorry to keep you waiting. I believe you wanted to discuss the potential for a training facility in your home state? Let me begin by saying that…”
“Everything okay with Darcy?” Sam was checking over his wing pack, but he looked up at Steve for a response.
“Probably came to her senses,” Bucky smirked, “decided to upgrade to a better looking model.”
“She did mention your pretty face, Buck.” Steve had to bite his cheek to keep from grinning. “Said she has a lot of money riding on you staying handsome.” Bucky’s eyes widened in surprise and Sam chortled.
“Laugh it up, chuckles,” Bucky said grimly.
“Don’t feel too bad, she’s only interested in Sam for his butt.” It was Bucky’s turn to laugh, but Sam only grinned.
“Girl has excellent taste – present company excluded, of course.”
“Idiots,” Wanda muttered from the other side of the jet.