2019-09-14 - Just a Dog Bite, Right?


Steve Rogers goes for a run and runs into much more than he expected. Thank god for Bucky's sangfroid and ability to process a novel state of being for his other half.

Log Info:

Storyteller: {$storyteller}
Date: 09/14/2019
Location: Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York City

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Theme Song



With the sun setting earlier and earlier in the change of the seasons, and with the encroaching cool of each evening, the tide of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park’s main tourist crowds have shifted. While some linger later on the sprawling greens between copses of trees, most don’t linger much past eight at night. It means less chance of being spotted by well-meaning visitors or paparazzi — and this is one thing Steve will take advantage of.

In knee-length jogging shorts and a t-shirt, sneakered feet pounding away, he covers the concrete maze of pathways with adroit ease in his exercising. The night breeze is cooling on the sweat at his temples and between his shoulderblades. Tonight wasn’t a night where he felt the need to have any music or a TED talk pulling his attention half-elsewhere. It’s been at least five laps around the entirety of the Park before his phone chimes. Pulling it from his pocket, he frowns down at it and then smiles, a half-pull of lips fond as the day is long.

As he continues running, he thumbs the touch-screen back to his husband. Little dancing text-dots dance to show his activity to the brunet.

And suddenly disappear.

A flash of mottled-brown in his peripheral precedes his legs being taken entirely out from beneath him at the level of mid-thigh. Flash-burn: pain spreads up into his hip socket and down through his knee, half-blinding. A cry is stoppered up behind his teeth as the Captain immediately brings a fist down onto the nearest foreign body. He’s no longer beneath it because it’s dealing with a section of crumpled ribs; Steve nearly punched through its torso in his force. His phone still glows a yard or two away, a cool light in the scraggled shadow-pattern of the tree canopy above.

In his sprawl on the pavement, bare joints scuffed and his leg icy with distress, Steve stares at the biggest dog he’s ever seen in his life. It’s easily the size of a pony if not larger yet and —

Oh, his brain doesn’t want to process the long front toes tipped in ink and the bared teeth, lips pulled back in frothing agony, as it shambles away from him into the trees again. Blood is red on ivory teeth instead of black. Who knew?

Regardless, he’s got space — the thing’s in full retreat — he needs evac. Daring to look in both directions along the path, the Captain can see no one on approach. Shouting will only draw attention — what if there’s more of them? He’s compromised.

His injured leg drags as he works himself to his phone. Picking it up, he texts Bucky:


Thank god he’d told Barnes where he was running. The bright screen is now smeared in gore. He’ll need to clean it off. Branches rustling makes him immediately roll to his back and bring up fists — fingers slide against one another and he almost crushes his phone — the one good leg is brought back and curled, ready to completely kick in the ribcage if the thing’s leaping —

— just the wind.

His fingers are so slippery. It would be awful if he dropped his phone again.

Maybe Bucky will bring the motorcycle. Prospect Park Southwest, one of the main streets, abuts the grounds not too far away. He can swing around the park barricade, surely. Or bust through it. It’d be nice — the sidecar would be much better than walking — everything’s tingling now — his blood feels fizzy — cold sweats are the pits, it’s been so long since an identifiable case of the cold sweats — pain sweat is different — wow, that’s definitely a good dog bite, there’s even a flash of bone.

Steve ends up on the nearest park bench with his t-shirt wrapped and tied tightly around the worst of the savaging. His injured leg stretches along it as he slumps, eyes still warily scanning his surroundings through his lashes. He can already feel his blood pressure struggling — wouldn’t do to lose more blood at this point.


He’s there in a flash, showing up in the sidecar Ural that he nearly slings up onto the curb in his haste to get there. He’s got a first aid pack in hand and Buck’s running for him flat-out. It’s like the old days, in exactly the kind of nostalgia you don’t want. All that’s missing is the chatter of German machine guns or the thunder of artillery.

“Mother of God, Steve,” he says, as he ends up at his husband’s side. “What the hell happened. Dial 911,” he adds, briskly. Already pulling a clotting bandage out of the pack.


Oh very good, the motorcycle. It brings Steve up out of the miasm of attempting to ignore just how much his body is intent on reminding him that torn skin stings. A little. Just a little bit.

“Biggest damn dog I’ve ever seen,” he grunts out as he tries to help Bucky apply the immediate wound packaging. Ham-handed, the effort, the Captain’s fingers trembling in adrenaline. The t-shirt will be a loss; half-dried blood splotches it in Escher patterns. Revealing the wound itself proves it to be moderately nasty. Avulsion from tearing teeth means bright and healthy muscle is revealed and, in one case, a glancing sliver of shiny bone at the bottom of Steve’s femur. He chokes on a groan as his sneakered foot twitches. At least this means tendons are still intact! A clear puncture mark sits by itself where an eye-tooth slid in and didn’t drag, this revealed by wiping blood away from unbroken skin around it.

It’s a big tooth, by the diameter of the hole.

“Kings County Hospital is right off Winthrop and New York Ave,” he adds on a hard breath, swallowing down the taste of shock. “Less than ten minutes. Can make it ten minutes in the sidecar.” He’s already trying to push himself off the park bench and towards it. A shiver courses through him. The night air on sweat-dampened skin is cold, especially with his t-shirt no longer an option for wearing.

He hasn’t noticed the shallow gashes along his back, skipping from shoulderblade to floating rib, neat and thin as if four scalpel blades had glanced over him.


Buck, however, has. His face is pale. How the hell did this happen? Steve was running in the Park. Not on a mission. Not out there in the weeds, where he knows the risks (and generally ignores him, the meatball). He slaps on the clotting bandages, both leg and back, with the brisk brutality of a short order cook dealing with the lunch rush.

Then he’s heaving Steve up into an over the shoulder carry, not even waiting for his permission, and running back to where he’s left the bike. The Captain’ll find himself dumped into the Ural’s sidecar in haste, and then he’s astride and peeling out into traffic. Urals aren’t racing bikes, by any stretch of the imagination, but he’s got his faithful Soviet steed doing things that’d make her designers stretch their eyes….and in some cases, pat each other on the back.

Then he’s all but running into the landscaping at the hospital proper, heaving the Captain up over his shoulder again and storming into the ER like the wrath of God.


Steve does his best to make as little sound as possible in his handling both over his husband’s shoulders and into the safety of the sidecar. Tight, ragged grunts are all that can be heard. A soldier's drilling about silence during danger dies a hard, hard death.

The ER nurse looks up from her computer and rises to her feet, eyes wide behind her spacles. “Oh lawd,” says she, her accent thick. “Bring him in, come on.” Nobody’s stopping the Soldier from his wrathful entrance. Steve makes some quiet sound of complaint, muttering in Gaelic about him being fine, but it’s half-hearted. Ow. The Captain ends up on a gurney and wheeled into a surgical suite. Another nurse does her best to encourage Bucky to remain off to one side in the room, for now — they’ve got to get the wound flushed out and possibly wheel the blond Captain in for sutures. It’s a doozy, this bite.

“This’ll sting,” the trauma nurse warns Steve. And it does. His torso flexes as he grits his teeth against another outcry and the nurse with the accent adds, under her breath,

“Bless me, the lawd deems fit make ‘em nice sometimes.”

It turns out…


…that the immediate deep-tissue damage is healed up by the time they’ve strung suture-thread on a needle and forceps. No more bone shows. That should be of note to Bucky, when the nurse comments about the wound being shallow, thank god. Steve stares at the ceiling, eyes glassy, and explains what happened.

Yes, m’am, he was out for a run. No, m’am, there had been no reports of wild animals. It was a big dog. Yes, m’am, a dog. Prospect Park. No, m’am, there are no bears in Prospect Park, he would know about this. No, he didn’t get a good look at it. No, m’am, his tetanus records are not up to date because he’s…Steve Rogers.

“Oh lawd.” The nurse with the accent blinks in surprise and glances up at Barnes and back to Steve. “We’ll get you comfortable, Mister Rogers, don’t you worry a mite.”

After a few hours on the gurney, the Captain is released back into Bucky’s care with a…dramatically-high dosage of painkiller assigned and a request to change the bandages every twelve hours, don’t get them wet, come back immediately if there are signs of infection, return in a week for suture check.

“I just wanna go home,” Steve mumbles to his husband, leaning heavily into him now as they exit the room, and him in a borrowed shirt from the staff. Captain Steve Rogers can’t go out into the night again without one, tsk. He can’t bend his knee with how it’s wrapped and he’s on a nice number of pills right now. The room’s fuzzy — he’s fuzzy — Bucky’s fuzzy — everything’s fuzzy!


Buck has sense enough not to mother hen, but he is very firm about offering necessary info. Steve isn’t like other patients on so many fronts. The bike will have to be retrieved by another Avenger - they’re taking a cab, for this one.

Home it is, and Steve ushered into their big bed, where Buck sits down beside him, shoulders slumping. Trying not to cry….or ask too many questions. Not until Steve’s slept for a while.


A wise idea, not asking questions, because the painkillers finally catch up to the Captain once he’s horizontal again on their master bedroom back in the apartment. A hand feels for Bucky regardless and slaps groggily off him a few times before landing on the man’s thigh.

“‘m’gonna…but you st… Oranges. Oranges ‘nd…everything tickles…” he mumbles before passing clean out. His breathing is steady and even. It turns out that drugging him to the gills is the only way to keep him from kicking the blankets from his feet. Hours pass. It’s sometime around six in the morning, when the sun’s just thinking about rising, that he frowns and twitches — hard. A full-body jolt, as if he were dreaming like a dog. Another jolt and he gasps in his sleep, brows knitted.


Buck’s brought in his comfy chair, settled it by the bed. He can keep an eye and ear on his husband, but not disturb him. So that gasp has him waking instantly, and looking to Steve. Face drawn with worry, lips thinned out. But he doesn’t try to wake him - just watching to see what happens.


A harsh dream, whatever is running through his mind. Unconsciously, he tries bending his leg and that entices a whine from him. Fingers grab at the blanketing and then close up, pulling it from its tucking at the base of the bed. Curling to his side towards Bucky, the Captain goes into a fetal position, as if his stomach were cramping. Another jolting shudder and a harsh exhale before he seems to awaken.

Pupils gone dilated find Bucky in the chair. “Water,” he whispers before clutching at his stomach again. “Gonna be sick.” There’s cold sweat breaking out all over him now, as if his body were trying to beat a fever. “‘m’gonna…!?”

Screw needing help getting to the bathroom because there the man goes, scrabbling out from beneath the sheets and into the master bathroom, heedless of the stiff movements of his bandaged leg. He at least has the wherewithal to pull the door closed behind him. The sounds of retching follow. By their hollow note, he at least made it to the toilet.

The bummer? He yanked the door’s mechanism all out of alignment. It’s locked.



For an ordinary, lame day to day run of the mill househusband, maybe.

For a HYDRA trained assassin husband, nothing short of the Chernobyl sarcophagus is *locked*.

But Steve doesn’t get sick. This doesn’t happen. And it’s freaking Buck out, quite simply.

“Steve,” he says, through the door, already rattling on the knob. He’ll yank the entire assemblage right out of the door. Not like Steve doesn’t respect his privacy when he’s trying to tweeze an errant chin hair anyway, they can deal without a knob for a few days, if they have to.


Barnes very well may need to surgically, or not, remove the entire apparatus from the door. Steve doesn’t immediately reply but for another retch and what sounds like a gritted, gutteral whine. Then comes the most spectacular series of sounds. Is he rearranging the entire bathroom?!

ThumpthumpthumpTHUD sliiide — there’s the shadow of the bathmat slapping against the door — it sounds like an elbow or knee just hit the edge of the raised wall to the shower — and that’s definitely the curtain plus rod coming down by the soft rattle and much louder CLANG — and then a stillness punctuated by the random scuffing thump of maybe a heel hitting the shower wall itself.

There’s a roughly human-sized bundling underneath the collapsed shower curtain, hunched on itself, breathing roughly, tucked into the shower tub’s corner.

Kidding, it’s bigger than human on approach. Much bigger. About…two hundred pounds of additional muscle mass, probably a foot and a half of height, and…fur.


All right, to hell with this. Buck switches hands, grips down, and simply yanks the whole knob assemblage right out of the door. Oops.

“STEVE,” he says, urgently, as he opens the door, having set the knob aside. Hey, he may need it later.

Then……fur? Buck makes a ridiculously canine noise in his own right. Almost Scooby-Doo. Ruh? He’s crouching down beside the furry thing. A wookiee came in here and stole his husband and then slipped on the bathmat?


With the broad spread of shoulders facing towards his husband, Steve curls upon himself. He’s panting, but not with the same intensity or indicating notes of pain, more with exhaustion now. Still, the stifling of the shower curtain is not fun. Out comes a hand.

Maybe it’s a hand. Its span of fingers encompasses the size of a dinner plate and all are tipped with peach-colored talons about as long as a Siberian Tiger might sport, skin covered over in fine blond fur. It feels around for the edge of the shower wall and then comes the sit-up, shrug off of the curtain.

There’s now about 400lbs of super-serum-boosted werewolf sitting in the Rogers-Barnes bathtub. Eyes still as blue as the summer sky look around and find Bucky. It’s hard to speak English around the elongated snout and four inch-long canines emerging downwards from lips like saber-teeth, white and sharp. The triangular ears, long and perched atop his skull above the thick, nearly leonine ruffing of fur around his neck and down across his back, those ears go flat in clear dismay. Why is his English garbled? Why is the shower so small? Why do his boxer-briefs feel too tight around his thighs?

Why is Bucky looking at him like that? The black nose wrinkles in concern.

Somebody hasn’t look down at himself yet.


After all these years, all their adventures, all the things HYDRA made him do, not a lot shocks Bucky.


This does.

He’s gone white as the shower tile, jaw dropped, eyes widening far beyond their usual sleepy droop. “Steve,” he says, and his voice is an airless wheeze. He meets the blue gaze - still his husband’s guileless, summer-sea blue - and then drops his gaze promptingly to the rest of the furry mass.

Take a look at that.

He can’t even bring himself to say it.


Those ears go out to the sides now along the back of his furry skull and then Steve looks down at himself.


It sounds a little bit like someone kicked the world’s largest Chihuahua.

Thank god the tub’s made of sturdy stuff. He scrabbles all over the place, leaving gouges in the tile walls with his finger- and toenails, now talons, and nobody’s helping the shower curtain. Steve is a blur of blond fur as he shoves and pushes it out of the tub entirely — hopefully Bucky doesn’t get hit with the metal bar it once hung on.

After a minute, his broad chest heaving and tongue lolling, the Captain seems to get hold of himself. With a long, drawn-out whine, he looks at his legs, with their broad span of sturdy metatarsal bones to help him stand on the pads of his feet, and at his arms, still sapient at least in the completely-dextrous thumbs. He pats at his face and goes cross-eyed at the extension of his nose. Another whine. At least there’s no tail.

Bucky gets a very, very sad and confused look now and the blond werewolf tries to approach him, probably to see if he can’t get a hug from the silver-armed Soldier. A brave thing to do, maybe, given the amount of destruction he just enacted in less than sixty seconds, and none of it pertaining to the impressive teeth on display.


Like Bucky himself hasn’t done worse, in his own panicked rages….and that without fur or claws. He doesn’t hesitate - he holds out his arms for his giant, furry, doggo husband. “Steve, I dunno what bit you in the park, but it sure as hell wasn’t a dog. You still understand English, right, sweetheart?”

Almost as if he’d half carry the werewolf out of the bathroom. The bedroom’ll be better, surely.


How four-hundred pounds of werewolf is expected to fit in Barnes’ lap is maybe a question for physics, but Steve damn well tries, at least for a second. Giving up, he sits down beside his husband, legs sprawling across the bathroom floor. Yes, the grey boxer-briefs are somehow still intact; the manufacturer needs some laud, given how much the seams are stressed. He exudes an insane amount of body heat now, even with the thick covering of his fur pelt, and within his arms is still strength checked — but somehow more strength yet, as if the shift in forms made two tons a sneeze to manipulate.

Steve nods and more garbled sounds escape him before he stops and sighs out a long whine again. Huskies throwing tantrums are fairly similar in cadence and timbre, though the werewolf is far deeper given the build. He licks his nose and grimaces, setting his nose to wrinkling again. More half-swallowed vowel sounds follow and echo in the bathroom before he simply stops and huffs.

Looks like it’s ASL.

«Yes, I understand English,» he signs with his hands as best he can manage, the gestures stilted and off-shaped for the new set of his hands.


No laughing. Only a terrible husband would laugh at Steve warbling like a Husky who wants a walk. But Buck has to bite his lip, nearly until the blood runs, not to do it. He blows out an explosive breath of his own.

“Okay, good. Figure you can write, sweetheart? I got a note pad in my bedroom, one sec.” And he’s beckoning Steve out into the master bedroom. “C’mon.”

He darts into his own room, comes back with a big sketchpad and a sharpie, one of the bigger ones. Maybe it’ll let those clawed hands write.


Tender, cautious steps bring Steve out of the bathroom. He ducks through the door, has to exit it sideways in order to not injure himself or the lintel, and then stands there, looking…decidedly sheepish for nearly half a ton of canine-bent primordial horror. Hunched over, his face is level with Bucky’s own face as he looks down at the sketchpad and the Sharpie. A furrowing of brow is classical Steve Rogers gumption on display.

The Sharpie gets dropped with the cap on. Sighing, Steve stoops to pick it up. Normally, he’d pluck the cap off with his teeth. This time, he crunches through the cap entirely and smacks his lips at the taste of the permanent marker along a small section of his lips. Spitting out the plastic, he then tries to grip the pen and write on the paper. Ears flick back and he squints. Squeaky-squeeeeak…and he tears through the paper with the pen. Nose wrinkles. He shakes the sketchpad to a new page and tries again.


And the pen snaps at the felted end to spill black permanent ink all over the paper and onto the floor.

With a slow whiiiiiiiine, Steve stares at the stain in the middle of the bedroom floor. Then, in an abnormal fit of sudden anger, he takes sketchpad in his mouth and shreds it. The Sharpie ends up somewhere on the floor. Paper flies violently around him like snowfall as he lets out a snarl deeper and more hair-raising than anything heard yet. Spitting it out, he huffs down at its shredded cardboard backing at his feet…

…and then looks at Bucky in shock.


It would be hilarious, if it weren’t so shocking, indeed. That’s a lot of muscle, a lot of teeth, and a lot of uncontrolled temper in someone with enormous strength. But there’s no fear in the Soldier.

“Breathe deep, big boy,” he says. “Siddown, and take slow, slow breaths. You know how. I’m gonna call SHIELD. This is way beyond my paygrade, but I don’t know that we need to go direct to the Doctor. Okay?”

God help him if WolfSteve decides to object.


Another warbling whine leaves the gaped jaws, but Steve does sit down — after tramping over to the bed and stepping on top of it. Three spins, widdershins, on all fours, and then he curls up as a dog might, knees tucked to his chest and face nearly chin-flat to the rumpled bedding. By the brief stillness to follow the big sigh, the wereSteve realized what he just did…and by the eyeroll to follow and shove of nose underneath a wave of covers, he knows Bucky saw it.

Still, before the Soldier leaves, the werewolf sits up. «Don’t tell…» he signs before the ears go flat and to the sides. «WAND.» He spells out the acronym for the magically-inclined department within SHIELD itself. «Start with WAND. They will have thoughtfulness about it.» Tact, he means, not going around spreading rumors and getting Fury in a tizzy about their most senior agent getting struck down with a lupine virus.

«Food?» he also signs, the touch of fingertips to his front lips universal even in toddlers these days. The healing as well as the change must have sucked his metabolism of a good chunk of energy. The wrappings about his bite site were all but destroyed in the shifting and by the looks of things, the scarring will fade by sundown this day. Beyond the window, the glow of dawn appears.


“Sure, sweetheart. I went shopping the other day. Lemme get on the horn to WAND, and then I’ll cook you breakfast. Bacon and eggs sound good?”

Buck’s….back to matter of factness. Like that’ll let him ride out this new flavor of insanity. But then….it has in the past. Like they used to say in Europe, ’The only way home is forward and through.’

They have a landline, Buck insists. Complete with a couple of repro phones that look like something from their own era. So he’s on the kitchen phone in moments, working his way through the chain.


No reason for Steve to stay on the bed since his other half agreed to whip up some serious protein for the hungry werewolf. He pads out after Bucky, eerily silent despite his bulk, and finds himself just barely shy of touching his ears to the ceiling at his full height. They still flick flat and he grumbles to himself, sounding as if he were gargling rocks as he then continues at a more stooped posture.

His steps lead him to the fridge. Glancing over at Bucky on the phone, he pauses to see if he can hear the conversation. It sounds like the Soldier has finally reached the proper desk, perhaps even that of Agent Turner — good, Steve trusts that particular WAND agent to be level-headed and not overreact. The fridge creaks open as Steve pulls on the handle with delicate control of his strength. His nose can be heard to snuffle around…

…and he emerges with the entire five-pound plastic-wrapped package of bacon in his mouth. A furtive look at Barnes and then he turns to pad away silently down the hallway. Someone’s not waiting for it to be cooked, apparently!

And he leaves the fridge door open.


“No! Bad Steve! Drop it!” comes the imperious voice, Buck using his best drill sergeant’s bark. Like his werewolfendoodle is going to listen to him. He shuts the fridge door with a swipe of his metal hand and goes after Steve. “C’mon. If you want to eat it raw, you can, but stay in the kitchen. You’re gonna need a bowl to drink out of, at the very least, that’s salty.”

If you give a werewolf a cookie…..

He’s gonna wanna glass of milk.


The blond werewolf doesn’t listen one little bit.

In fact, the raised voice gooses him down the hallway and into the bedroom at a shockingly fast pace for something so large. By the time Bucky will find him curled up on the bed in his nest of rumpled covers and sheets, the bacon is gone.

Foam tray and plastic covering and all.

And Steve is licking his lips as if he’s perfectly happy about it.

Did he swallow it whole?!


A last lick of his lips and then Steve’s considering the bathroom again. There he goes on all fours, padding into it, and then one can hear the bathtub turn on. He’s drinking out of the bathtub faucet, since that’s the most convenient and volume-appropriate fall of water right now for the dryness of his mouth. That bacon was indeed salty.


Oh, Jesus. He can’t digest the plastic. Buck’s started to search frantically. This may need a second call to SHIELD. “Steve, what’d you do with the wrapping and the tray?” he asks, hastily following the wolf into the bathroom.

Genuinely scared. The last thing he needs is a Steve monster raging his way through the apartment building because of intestinal pain.


Slorping sounds come to a halt as Steve pulls back from the faucet’s fall of water. He blinks innocently at Bucky before belching, enough air leaving to wuft up his lips briefly. A look down at his stomach and back at his husband. Turning off the water slowly and carefully as to not damage the plumbing, he crouches beside the tub in the pile of shredded curtain and signs at him,

«I think I ate it.»

Who knew werewolves could blush beneath their fur? It shows around the end of his muzzle and beneath his eyes, where the pelt is thinner.


“Aw, jeez, Stevie, you’re not a were-goat. I don’t think you can digest that, you should try and throw it up, if you can,” Buck….he hasn’t been this close to panic in ages. “Does your stomach feel okay? Are you in pain?”

There’s magic involved. Maybe it can deal with saranwrap and polystyrene.

That may need Strange, though. Imagine the Doctor’s chagrin at being called out to deal with the giant furry would-be garbage disposal.


His ears rotate forwards as he looks down at his own bellybutton, hidden away by fur and muscles still apparent even through the pelt. A glance up at Bucky is hopeful and true-blue-eyed.

«I feel fine. Not even like it is poking at my stomach. Could look at WAND files on the computer? Files on server?» Surely WAND has at least the basics on hard drive somewhere, accessible with Steve’s senior level as agent, even at this distance from the looming Triskelion.

Still ashamed of the lupine instincts out of control, he then pads forwards on all fours, sinister in primal predatory grace. Bucky gets another hug with the werewolf tucking his chin flat to the man’s nape of neck, more than big enough to accomplish this and then some. He whines quietly, vocal cords vibrating against skin.

At least Bucky didn’t get licked up the face.


Usually he likes it when Steve licks him. But in this case, no….no, better not. Bacon breath is no joke. The Soldier goes a little stiff when he’s hugged. That’s a lot of muscle behind those claws, even if it’s still his sweet boy in there.

“I’ll try,” he says. “Let me get it fired up.”

Let’s face it, Barnes still distrusts computers that don’t have vacuum tubes.


Pulling back, the golden-blond werewolf at least a head and a half taller than him nods and crouches down to loom less. He gets to signing again. «Maybe we can find something useful? I do not want to be like this for a long time. I have to call out of work. The suit will not fit anymore.» He rolls his eyes and grumbles, the sound again low and almost reptilian at its depths. «I do not think I can hurt the shield. I should try though, it would be useful to know.»

And there the Captain goes, padding in ground-covering strides, to the closet. Opening the door hard enough for it to rebound off the wall, he winces and then reaches inside. Pulling out the spangled shield, he sniffs at it and licks it before catching himself. A wrinkle of his nose indicates ‘blech’ before he sniffs at it again. Placing it star-up, he then knocks his knuckles on it. A tilt of his head listens to the resonance. «It is a different sound,» he sign-reports, glancing up at Bucky.

Should Bucky leave the bedroom to use the laptop, he’ll hear various sounds of impact including a punch that results in a muffled yelp. Ouch — vibranium is still harder than a werewolf punch. No comment as to whether or not a round, shield-sized circle is now imprinted into the flooring of the bedroom. If he returns to the bedroom, he’ll find Steve crouched and chewing furiously on the vibranium shield with his dentation on full display like some demonic chipmunk. Black-lined lips peeled back showcase a great number of very large teeth, all apparently made for slicing and snatching and breaking bone along the mid-point of the shearing teeth.

The werewolf freezes and removes his mouth from the shield. It gets set down, covered in slobber and some teeth scratches and he reports via ASL, «Still very sturdy, this is good news in case we ever run into a giant wolf.»

Ironic Steve is ironic.


In all their decades of fighting together, Buck has never seen Steve *lick* the shield. And he’s unable to stifle a snort of laughter, even as his metal hand covers his mouth. Then there’s another snort, a hitch, and the dam is burst.

He doesn’t sound hysterical, not even close, but he’s still doubled over with laughter, wiping at his eyes with his free hand. Buck eventually has to just….sit down on the bedroom floor while laughter takes its course.


Padding over on silent paws, Steve then crouches beside his giggling husband. His head tilts left…and then right… before he tries to smile.

It's garish, all teeth, but it's an attempt!

A cold nose ends up in Bucky's ear regardless and he snuffles loudly, to interrupt in about the most cheeky, childish way possible in his current guise.

«It is good to hear you laugh. I was scared,» the werewolf signs at him, a picture still of uncertainty in his flattened ears. Scared that Bucky would be too scared of him.


He flings his human arm around the Stevewolf’s neck, but continues giggling. “You’re pretty freaky lookin’, Steve, “ he acknowledges, when he can look up again. He grins at the wolf. “But you’re still my boy. Even if you think your own shield is a frisbee.”

Then he’s turning fully to hug the wolf. “Are your thoughts still clear? Or is that body making it hard to think?”


Bucky might be picking hair from his mouth after the return hug. The blond creature wraps his broad arms about him and pulls him in close, still crouched. There’s a soft crooning growl, not too unlike a crocodile, to vibrate against the Soldier’s scapula before Steve pulls back. He needs his hands to sign after all.

«It is difficult. Like when things first got changed for me after Erskine's serum. I cannot ignore smells and sounds. My brain is telling me to do things like find a dark space.» He scans the room in a momentary distancing of attention before he seems to wrench himself back to communicating with Bucky again. «Things like leave this place and run, but I know better. You know it is me. Nobody else does.»

Those true-blue eyes, still holding their spark of humanity, are sad.


“I can clean out the closet, if you need somewhere to den up,” Buck offers, gently. “But no, no running out. I know confinement is hard.” God knows he has days where he stays up on the rooftop because he can’t bear walls around him a moment longer. Where he has to see the stars beyond the haze of city light. “And if we need to, we can go to a state park and let you run.”

He leans up to kiss the furry muzzle, right over the whiskers.


Again crooning quietly, the gigantic beast leans into the kiss to the bridge of his long nose. A huge sigh from the depths of his chest and he nods. «I can behave,» Steve signs forlornly, his talons flashing more smoothly now. Always a quick learner, this one, swift to adapt to the situation at hand. «I will go to the roof if I need air, but at night. Nobody will see me there.» He gives the open door of the wardrobe another thoughtful look and whufts. «Yes, maybe clean out the closet. It makes me happy to think about it being a place to go.»

Bucky does get a smile, albeit toothily — so much teeth — what big teeth you have, Steve, damn.

«I would make a joke about coming out of the closet, but it would be in bad taste, I think.»

And then he licks the brunet straight up the face.

Mmm, bacon breath.

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