Title: The Shock of the Soul
Fandom: Avengers, Marvel Cinematic Universe,
Category: Trope Bingo Round One, Soul mates, Soulmates, Soul Bonding,
Pairings: Tony Stark/Steve Rogers, Clint Barton/Phil Coulson, Pepper Potts/Bruce Banner, Thor/Jane Foster, Natasha Romanov/James “Bucky” Barnes,
Spoilers: Entire MCU,
Summary: What did it matter to Steve now what the name of his soulmate is? The woman or man had to be dead and buried. He would have to live his life alone. He finds himself attracted to Tony Stark, he thinks on why Tony doesn’t have a soulmate for himself.
When Steve Rogers woke up, he found a world changed. Every single person tiptoed around him. He could see the couples that were working around him and he knew why everyone was acting like they were. His soulmate was probably dead and gone and never understood why their true love never came for them. He truly felt sorry for the woman or man that he left behind. It hadn’t been his intention. After the war, he had fully intended to find his soulmate and live with him or her for the rest of their life or his, whichever came first. He looked briefly at the back of his hand, where his soulmate’s initials used to be.
During his childhood, they had mocked him. No one wanted a scrawny person who had so much trouble breathing and had a chip on his shoulder that was the size of Russia. Those three letters were the three things he could never get rid of. He’d cover them up but they would come back when he showered. Then on his eighteenth birthday they had disappeared on their own. He was happy to see them go away. He was happy to not have the constant reminder of his failings.
“Captain?” a voice asked and Steve turned to face the man who had talked to him outside just a few hours before.
“Director,” Steve said sticking his hand out to shake the man’s hand. He had called himself Nick Fury.
“I know that you have a lot to do. I have a few agents who are going to get you up to speed.”
Steve nodded, not knowing what else to do.
The world had been saved. The price had been high though. The death toll hadn’t yet been figured out. The death of Phil Coulson though, had been enough for Steve. The Avengers had gone their own ways for a few weeks. Steve had traveled on his bike from one side of the country to the other. Steve was unsure of what the others had done.
Three days into his trip, Steve found a cell phone in his pack on the bike. He hadn’t been sure who had put it there until he had found a small booklet. It was an instruction booklet but had a great deal of handwritten notes that gave him more information than the booklet itself. It was a StarkPhone, a prototype. He used it a great deal once he figured out how to use the GPS. His phone taught him more about the new world he was in than SHIELD had.
The call came from Stark nearly four weeks from when Steve had left.
“Rogers, when you coming back to NYC?” Stark asked.
Steve could hear all kinds of noise in the background and he couldn’t place a sound of it. He knew that Stark invented things and Howard’s places where he worked were always busy and noisy.
“I just entered New York an hour ago. I’ll be there soon.”
“Good. I got your room finished!” Stark proclaimed loudly. Steve a cessation of the noise and a click before Stark started to speak again. “I got your room done first. I figure the others can come later.”
“Others? Later?” Steve pulled off to the side of the road and unhooked the headset and pulled the phone to his ear.
“Oh. Yeah, I forgot I haven’t been in contact with you since we all split. I have bunks for all of the Avengers in the tower.”
“I started it when Fury told me that he didn’t want Thor or Banner staying long term on the Helicarrier. Something about not even me having enough money to keep it afloat. Then Barton started to bug him. Barton’s been crashing in a half-finished floor for two weeks now. I have his and Widow’s floor next on my list. Wanna come check yours out?”
“I’ll be there soon.”
“You know how to find my big ugly tower,” Stark said as his he hung up. Steve felt bad for a few seconds about the jab he had made about the tower but he shoved it from his mind. Stark seemed to be able to get the worst out of him. No one had ever been able to get under his skin like the older man had. He hooked his headset back up and aimed for the tower.
Touch was still something that Steve didn’t like to do. The pain of touching someone and knowing that they were not his soulmate would never be soulmate. Since waking, he had limited his touching. He remembered the shock of shaking Stark’s hand after they had shipped off Thor and Loki. There had been a shock that had run over his hand then but he had chalked it up to the Cube. He was sure that there was a charge in the air for everyone after that display of magic from the Cube.
Even now the three letters of his past haunted him.
Tony watched as Rogers pulled up to the curb. The staff of the Tower knew what to do. A man ran from the Tower and grabbed the bike from Rogers and directed him up. Steve looked up the Tower but Tony was sure that Rogers couldn’t see him. Tony hadn’t taken off his armor yet from a test of his newest armor. He landed on the ramp and started down it. He appeared inside the Tower proper at the same time that Rogers appeared in the room. Tony waved and Rogers just nodded.
“You know, Pepper is worried about you,” Tony said as he offered Rogers a can of soda. Rogers just stared at him but took the can of soda.
“Why?” Steve wanted to ask who but then he remembered the redhead that he had met once. Pepper Potts, the CEO of Stark Industries.
“Your soulmate, whoever you left behind.”
“I never left anyone behind.”
“Really?” Tony looked at the Super Soldier and gave him a small smile. “Never found that spark?”
“I never did.” Rogers popped the tab on the pop and took a long drink. “I don’t see you with someone; I figured Miss Potts was your one.”
“Yes, well. We were never more than placeholders. Pepper found her one just two weeks ago. RBB Robert Bruce Banner. It makes me sick it’s so sweet.”
“Wow that had to be a punch to the gut.”
“Not really.” Tony shrugged and sat down on the couch at the side of the room. Rogers followed and sat down in a chair opposite him. “Pep and I were great but there was just too much.”
“What about your initials?”
“Haven’t thought about them in years. I gave up finding my one long ago.” Tony looked at his hands. He rubbed over where his initials had been. He had looked at them for hours as a child. He looked up to see Rogers staring at him hands. “As a child, my father never brought up the initials on my hand. Howard found my mother late in life, as you can tell by my age.”
“Why did Howard never talk about your soulmate?”
“Never figured that out. My mother never did either.”
“What are they?” Steve asked.
“What are they?” Steve asked. He looked at Stark as the man stopped rubbing his fingers over his hand.
“SGR. I jokingly called him or her Sergeant as a child.”
Steve felt the bottom of his stomach fall out. SGR. Steven Grant Rogers. No wonder Howard didn’t talk about Tony’s soulmate. There was no way that it could be him, could it? It couldn’t be but the letters were a reminder of something that Howard had lost. A friend that he would never see again. He thought about his own letters. AES.
“What’s your middle name?” Steve asked, trying to keep his voice calm. There was no reason to get Stark…Tony’s hopes up or even his own.
“Edward. Anthony Edward Stark. I hate Anthony though. Have gone by Tony since I was young.”
Steve didn’t know what to do. He wanted to grab a hold of Tony and kiss him. He wanted to scream to the roof tops. He wanted to…Steve stood up; Tony did as well, looking at him with confusion on his face. Steve took the one step it took to bring them together. He grabbed Tony’s face and pulled him in for a kiss. He felt the jolt over his body and knew that Tony had to feel the same thing. Tony was passive for several seconds; it wasn’t until Steve was getting ready to pull back. Tony grabbed Steve’s ass and pulled him close. It threw Steve off balance and it dropped them both to the couch.
“What was that about?” Tony asked, looking at him in shock.
“Steven Grant Rogers.” Steve watched as Tony’s eye grew wide. The ringing of the elevator bell had Steve getting up quickly. Every single Avenger entered the room with their significant other. Natasha was now the only one without a significant other. She had mentioned meeting her soulmate once, when Clint and she had been drinking. She never volunteered his name or anything about him.
Pepper was looking at them with a strange look on her face. Tony was still on the couch but he had turned to look at the new arrivals. He smiled at them all before he turned back to drop on the couch.
“What have we here?” Natasha asked as she moved to look at them. Tony just smiled and flicked on the TV on the wall.
“Tony?” Pepper asked.
“I will be working on turning Steve’s floor into a daycare or something.”
“Daycare?” Bruce asked/
“Pepper isn’t getting any younger and neither is Natasha. Of course, Clint and Coulson will probably adopt if they ever decide to.”
“And you and Rogers?” Coulson asked.
Steve coughed as Tony started to laugh.
“Really?” Clint asked. He dropped in beside Tony on the couch.
“You sound so surprised,” Tony said as he looked at the marksman.
“Never thought that you would settle down.”
“Been waiting for my Capsicle it seems.” Tony’s voice took on a tone that Steve had never heard before. He had heard Pepper and Tony talking after the Battle for Mid-Town. This wasn’t anywhere near that tone. It soothed Steve and relaxed him even though he could feel the blush creep up his face. Pepper was standing behind Tony now, her hands on his shoulders. He was looking up at her with a fond look on his face.
He felt like he belonged now. He had a placed to stay and be loved.
Two Years Later
The shock of the face in front of him shook Steve to his core. He hadn’t been prepared to see Tony, being held up by a man with a mechanical arm. He had rushed forward but when the man holding Tony turned around, Steve stopped cold. It was Bucky, trying to kill Tony.
The rest of the Avengers arrived and stopping beside him was Natasha. Her arms dropped to her side. She moved quickly though, when Bucky threw Tony to the ground. Steve was sure that she was going for Tony but when she tackled Bucky to the ground and desk him so hard that he was knocked out cold, Steve finally started to move.
“What is going on?”
“Winter Soldier,” Natasha said. Her tone was fond. He had only ever heard that tone of voice from her when she talked about Clint or Coulson.
“Bucky Barnes,” Steve said. She jerked and looked at him. There was something that was passing between them. They both wanted him to be safe.
“Bucky?” Tony rasped as Clint helped him to his feet. Steve moved then and moved to his husband. Tony looked down at the man who was out cold on the floor.
“He’s forgot me so many times. Don’t let them take him, Stark.” Natasha looked up at him with tears in her eyes. Steve felt Tony stiffen.
“JARVIS lock down the Tower. No one but Coulson in the Tower.”
“Locked down, Sir.”
“Good. Steve, Natasha, take him to the infirmary. Bruce and I will be there as soon as we make sure I am not hurt. Clint, Thor go for backup. If he so much as twitches. Knock him back out. Don’t damage him.” Tony moved back to let them move around them. Steve kept his eyes on him as he left the room. The last thing he saw was Bruce moving to Tony to check him out.
Everyone filed out of the room and Tony looked at Bruce. Bruce stepped up to him and started to feel at his neck.
“Scans show no breakage, Sir.”
“I think you’ll be fine, Tony.” Bruce patted his shoulder. “Let’s go deal with our second World War II relic.”
Tony hung back when they arrived at the infirmary. Steve was at Bucky’s side and Natasha was holding his real hand on the opposite side. Thor was at the edge of the small group, his hammer ready. Clint was nowhere to be seen. Tony looked up and found him on a beam in the ceiling with an arrow notched. He nodded at the marksman and Clint nodded back.
Natasha moving had the whole room looking at her. Bucky was strapped to the bed and started to move. Natasha leaned over to kiss him. She cupped his face and Bucky went still.
“Tasha?” Bucky asked as he opened his eyes. She smiled at him. “Where are we?”
“Safe?” Bucky looked around the room, seeing Thor, Bruce, and Tony before settling on Steve. “Dreaming?”
“No, soldier. Welcome to 2015.” Steve’s voice was hard and soft at the same time.
“You were dead,” Bucky stated as he looked around the room again.
“Frozen. SHIELD found me and woke me up. The Super Soldier Serum put me into stasis, much like you went through.”
“I…” Bucky looked at Natasha. “How did you break it?”
“The same way I’ve done it before.” Natasha leaned forward and kissed him again. Everyone saw his body shudder from the shock they all knew. When they were settled down, it would disappear. Tony knew that everyone there knew about Winter Soldier. They had never been told the name of the person he was. That the Winter Soldier, the man they had been on the lookout for was actually Bucky Barnes. Steve’s best friend and Natasha’s mate…
The newest couple would have an uphill battle but Tony and Steve would make sure they were safe and able to stay together. Tony could see the look of happiness on Steve’s face. Steve had his family back and alive. Bucky was safe and that was all that mattered. SHIELD just had to be made aware that they were not wanted nor needed in this.