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 Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU

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Lynx-Tiger



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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:09 pm

"Sure love." Steve watched as he got up from the bed. "I love you too, Bucky." He murmured as Bucky got himself a little more presentable and grabbed his laptop. "We'll do something fun in the morning."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:26 pm

Once he reached the library, Buck grabbed the crochet blanket he'd bought from the girls last time they were over there and draped it over his shoulders while he got curled up in a bean-bag chair, firing up his laptop and yawning wide and long. Once everything booted he found the facebook site of the shop, just wanting to browse and see if they put anything new up. It'd been several days since the video recording, and he had really enjoyed seeing the finished product. He decided to bring that up and have it playing in the background while he messed around.

That was when he was startled by a notification and clicked over to see it was...River...messaging him. Maybe he should get her Skype if she had one...why didn't he think of that, either? He was so forgetful. Her voice would be nice to hear right now.
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:31 pm

What are you doing on so late at night?! River wondered if that was too forward. She was sitting cross-legged on her chair as she worked on a minor needlework project. She had just updated the shop's photos as well as putting up some new finished work that was going to be on the sale's floor. She also had been on there because sleep was evading her. A late bath would work, but...Calla was dead asleep and River didn't want the running water to wake her up.


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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:39 pm

Blinking at the screen, his hands flew across the keyboard, /I should ask you the same thing! I had a nightmare, couldn't sleep anymore. Did you just not go to bed?/ he sent that then paused, /Are you working on another project? I have Skype so you can keep your hands busy./
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:22 pm

I have skype! Hold on let me find my headset. Here's my user name. River typed it out quickly and sent it to him. She grabbed her headset from the drawer of the desk and quickly unwound it, nearly dropping her stitchwork in the process. Once she untangled the set and snapped it in, she turned on skype and waited anxiously for the little screen to pop up that said that Bucky was adding her online.

The moment she saw it, she clicked and without a moment's thought she called him. "I'm sorry about your nightmare." She said sincerely when he said hello. "But in other news look at this duck." She held up the work that she was making. It was a blue duck with a trail of light blue ducklings. "A neighbor had a baby boy." She explained as she set the work down. "So I'm stitching this little thing as a gift. I don't know /why/ ducks. Swans would've been cute, but Calla reminded me that human's have this notion of swans being apart of marriage."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:21 pm

"Usually, yes," Bucky was amused, "That looks adorable in any case. I'm sure they'll love it. How long has it taken you? Something that small compared to your tapestry, I'm sure not long at all." He was right. Her voice was just what he needed. Steve...he was used to him, his words and way of comfort. River? He wasn't sure what she'd say next a lot of the time and the mystery was fun. He shifted the blanket on his shoulder a bit more and let his glamour cover his arm just in case it shined through the stitches.
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:58 pm

"It's not as far along as I wanted it to be." River frowned as she looked down at the needlepoint. "It's taken me a day. I was hoping to finish it tonight. Insomnia..." She threaded the needle and she looked up at Bucky. He looked a little lighter. She supposed he needed his mind taken off the nightmare and even though she was curious, she wasn't going to press. "I used to have this list of what makes me happy and I'd do them if I was feeling off." She explained. "Rocking chairs, stealing Calla's boat, waking up Vince and going to a twenty four hour diner and eating pancakes or forcing him to drink chocolate milk with me." She paused. "But what really made me happy was the ocean. When I was a gup, I could hold on to my mom's fin and she'd do tornado spins and force me to swim up or down, her swimming I could fall asleep to." She threaded the needle through the row of work and snipped it off and looked at Bucky. "Do you have a list? Of things that make you content? Happy?"
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:40 pm

"No...I don't have a list," Bucky shook his head, just watching her work as she found another shade of thread to use, "Swimming...I have been practicing the piano again to sharpen my skills since your performance so I can do it again. It makes Steve /so/ thrilled because the piano we own is in the conservatory and while he's gardening in there he can listen to me. Recently...heh, it makes me happy to stalk your shop's facebook page."

River set down the needlework and took a breath as she folded her arms against the desk. "My biggest fear is death and loud noises did you know that? I'm super terrified. If someone bangs their hands on a table, or moves so fast I flinch, I get so scared it's not funny. And for death? All I have to do is hear someone mention "oh hey the world's gonna end in a BILLION years" and I'm on the floor freaking out because dude, what if in those billion years I'm alive? I'm alive and I witness the end of the world. THAT'S TERRIFYING!" River lowered her voice quickly. "And I know you're thinking "I just woke up from a nightmare, why the fuck is she giving me nightmares for? What's the ever loving fuck is /wrong/ with you?" My answer is "everyone has nightmares. Especially when they're overwhelmed with new things." She took a breath. "Especially with new things."

"Being alive to witness the end of the world /would/ be terrifying, I agree. I wasn't thinking those things, either," Buck promised, wishing now he could reach through the computer to touch her, "Do you think that's what happened? I got overwhelmed with these new experiences? I was rather upset because I haven't had one in weeks and just when things were going well..."

"You were lonely, Buck. You and Steve both were isolated for a long time. Then me and Calla barged into your life." River explained gently. "And forced you into a video that you thought you could handle. We pushed you to a limit you didn't know you had."

"Forced? I willingly agreed to it, though..." he frowned deeply, "I...talked to Steve about that conversation we had a bit, and when he asked if I thought we were lonely I agreed. Being out here, away from the town...Steve and I didn't have very many friends, and then...yes, you two did show up out of nowhere, and we went from zero to three, since Vince is a cool guy. It's been...two weeks now? Almost the end of June, and /so/ much has happened. So...that might be it."

"It's possible." River smiled kindly. "I'm happy that we're considered your friends. I'm happy that you're not as lonely as you once were." She watched him through the computer screen. "I shouldn't pry...but is everything alright between you and Steve? I can't help it...I know that I should be flipping happy that you're talking to me about your nightmare...did you two get into a fight?"

Buck shook his head, "Not at all. I just...wanted to sulk and be pathetic without bringing him down with me, is all..." he sighed heavily, "He gets so worried about me. I told him to get some sleep, but he's probably laying in bed reading a book, waiting until six when I make breakfast. It was about...when we were overseas. My second tour and what happened to me. He /hates/ this nightmare just as much as I do. To him, it makes him feel like he failed, even though he saved me."

River sighed. "Martyr-complex." She said softly. "I'm tempted to tell you and Steve to get on a boat and meet me at the docks so we can go to a diner and get food. But I'm also tempted to tell you to go back the fuck to sleep, cuddle your man, and just bask in that feeling of love you know? You both are so hard on yourselves. For nothing that was either of your fault and don't give me that look. /Anything/ that happens in a war, regardless of conflict. Is /never/ your fault. No matter the order, no matter who issued the order, it is /never/ your fault. The blood on your hands is not on your hands. It's on the people who deem themselves /god/."

"If...I go back to bed, will you go to bed, too, River?" Buck asked, not addressing her words. That was a touchy subject, and being a military man it was just programmed into him not to talk about that sort of thing with a civilian. He didn't know if he agreed or not, anyway.

"I don't know." River's shoulders slumped. "It's...it's been a bad day all way around. I've been nauseous and scared...oh I didn't tell you." She swallowed nervously. "I...um...have been thinking of getting that tattoo you were talking to me about. It's gonna be really pretty. I'm getting a water colored rose on my thigh where the teeth marks are."

"Stomach twisting in knots, is it?" Buck smiled sympathetically, "That /does/ sound beautiful, though. You...aren't doing it just because of what I said, right? You're doing it for you?" he clarified.

River blinked a little. "I want it." She said after a moment. She knew from the way he raised his eyebrow up, that she sounded insecure. She cleared her throat. "It's a good idea." She assured. "Do you have any? I didn't see them in the water."

"It's..." Bucky blushed enough for it to be seen in the dark of the library in the glow of the laptop light, "Steve...it's in his cursive handwriting, because I love it so much, and it's just the word 'free' with a bird trailing off the last e that he drew along with it. It's on my right pelvis/hipbone whatever it is." He ran his hand over the spot to indicate it properly.

"Awwww!" River gushed, grinning. "I bet it looks gorgeous. So cute. Okay, okay. You go and cuddle Steve and cover him in kisses before he does it to you and makes you feel bad. I

"You better go to bed when it's done," Buck told her firmly, "I'll talk to you later, River. Thank you. You helped me feel a lot better. It was good to hear your voice." He closed all his other applications and windows and got ready to shut off the laptop.

"I always love hearing your voice too." River assured. "Have a good night. Kiss Steve!" She waved as she hung up the call.

Bucky knew he'd probably hurt Steve, anyhow, by walking away. In the spur of the moment, he just wanted to be alone. He hadn't even intended to talk to River. Still, it had helped more than he expected, and he made his way back to the bedroom. He was presented with a rare opportunity. Steve was so engrossed in the book he was in that he didn't even look up when the door opened. Of course, they kept the hinges well oiled so there was no squeaking anywhere in the house unless it was the stupid fridge. Setting the laptop on the dresser, he quite easily slipped into his stealthy soldier days and got to the foot of the bed. Steve was on his stomach, nose buried in the pages. So...he smiled and dropped his sweatpants so he was just in his underwear, and shifted them down just enough to show the tattoo, but didn't drop them, just in case it was just cuddling that ensued. He never wanted to seam too eager, unless he was, in which case those moments he was unabashed.

Right now...he just ever so slightly placed his hands on the sides of Steve's legs and leaned over, kissing the back inner thigh /right/ where he liked it, enjoying the sharp, startled inhale. Moving further on the bed, he kissed the small of Steve's back and trailed his lips up his spine, then finally kissed his shoulder before he whispered, "I'm sorry for leavin', babe." With that he laid on his side and waited for Steve to turn.

Steve smiled as he placed the book down and rolled so that he was just a little on top of him, but not fully in case Bucky was still feeling trapped. "Never apologize." He murmured as he leaned down, fully intending to kiss Bucky before pulling away with a teasing glint in his eyes. "Unless you're feeling...ah...up to making it up to me?"

"Hon, all you gotta do is take a glance at my hip to know the answer to that," Buck smirked in response, wrapping his arms around Steve's shoulders, one hand teasing his shoulder blades, the other brushing through the hair on the back of his head.

Steve ran his thumb across the tattoo as he kissed Bucky, coaxing his tongue into his mouth to tease and play with. He nipped at his tongue and ran it across Bucky's teeth before nipping at his lower lip. "Bucky," he growled softly, watching as his lover's eyes dilated. "All I have to do is feel it in your kiss. Though seeing your tattoo is a definite turn on too. You could lower your underwear a bit more, though. I think some of it is obscured."

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 12:07 am

Bucky wasn't the only one having a bad day. Steve's birthday was a week away. Literally. July 4th was on a goddamn /Monday/ for crying the fuck out loud. Calla was pacing. She only had finishing touches left to do on the painting. Most of it was done. Just some highlights on the water and clouds. She'd done a 36x48 and laid it sideways instead of up and down that way she could get as many details of the reef as she could without being too much at the same time. A great portion of the painting was still the light sky and the darker blue/green ocean, with the docks in the bottom right and the person sitting on the edge. She'd /tried/ to make it look like Steve without making it look like Steve at the same time.

She kept staring at it. Nothing was wrong, though she kept trying to make excuses. She hadn't done this in a long time. She wanted to throw it against the wall and bust it just so she could start over. Her stomach twisted, her spit tasted cold and weird, and she wanted to go throw up.

Before she registered what she was doing, she was walking out the door for her office and had her phone to her ear.

"You are sooo lucky that I am off today." Vince's voice answered the phone. "I forgot to turn it silent and so the theme song from Dylan's favorite-" He trailed off. "Sweetheart what's wrong?"

"I can't. Vince. I love it and that's the problem. I'm going to the beach. I can't breathe. I need you before I ruin it." Calla's voice came out in a rush.

"Okay." Vince soothed. "You go on the beach and get eaten by the sun. I'll meet you there. Do yourself a favor. Exhale as much air as you can, squeeze it out through your mouth and inhale through your nose slowly as possible. I'll be there soon."

Calla didn't even reply, just turned the phone off and put it in her pocket for her pants and once she reached the beach she wanted to face plant the sand like it was one big golden pillow, but that would be suffocating and she already took a shower that morning. Instead, she went to the water's edge and walked along it, heading towards one end of the beach where the rocks were and found one of her favorite rocks to sit on. She didn't want to do any rock climbing today, which was a good thing. Vince would kill her. As it was, the sun was beating down, and she didn't have sunscreen, so she was going to get burned. Oh well. At least she had aloe and it would end up a lovely tan by the time Steve's birthday came around.

Vince came by within twenty minutes riding his hot red bicycle. He slowed to a stop when he reached the beach and had locked it up on the bars before running down to the sandy area. He caught sight of Calla since he knew that she would be the rocks if she was /really/ super upset. Though he was kind of thankful that she decided to skip on the rock climbing. They would have had /words/. "So what's this about you loving your painting so much you're gonna burn it?"

"It's...I don't do commissions, Vince, and yet...on a whim I agreed to this. Buck's paying me really good money for it, too. I painted it like I would anything else, but...yet...at the same time. I didn't. It's a big painting. 36 by 48, horizontal instead of vertical. Three weeks...and it's beautiful. I just have some minor finishing touches on it, seal it and frame it, and it's done. I look at it and I /know/ it's different..." Calla rambled, "You should see it...think you could tell from a phone photo?" she pulled hers out and poked through it to her gallery, "I did step by step pictures so I could put it on my deviant-art...but here's the latest..."

"It's gorgeous." Vince murmured. "Those finishing touches would be pretty too." He paused. "I can tell that you're bleeding watercolors onto this painting." He said softly. "I can tell that you're splitting your soul because you did the commission for someone that you liked. You haven't done that since the last guy." He handed the cell phone back to her. "Are you worried that he's going to see those feelings in that picture?"

"He's...pretty observant..." Calla murmured, staring at her phone until the screen went black, "I kept staring at it at home and my mind kept wondering. I...can't deal with this sort of thing being one-sided. Not like the last time. I don't have the right. Bucky was there, first. Bucky has his heart, and it's not right. He may have /looked/ at me, Vince, but I'm not...even the teasing at the mansion. That was fun and I enjoyed it, but...it's hard not flirting. I want to dress sexy, I want to have him look at me more. I put my foot down the /second/ I saw the way they looked at each other. I wasn't going to fall for someone I can't have...but I'm attracted to him anyway when I'm trying to be just friends."

"Calla, dear heart, as much as I love you." Vince looked at her seriously. "Steve doesn't go for sexy. His attraction is not to /clothes/ it's to the person. Of course if you want to /dress/ sexy then do it. So what if he's with Bucky, it'll make you feel better. Now the flirting? Why not talk to Bucky about it? If it makes him jealous, don't do it. But if he says "Hey you know what? Steve could totally use an ego boost right now" then do that. Now as for the one-sided part, I don't know what to tell dearheart. I can't give advice on it, because from the many conversations I had with Bucky and Steve...I know that an open relationship will be on the table the minute Bucky suggests it. I know Bucky called River during a nightmare. So...you could try to wait...to see if Bucky will go for an open relationship."

"I don't want to be that girl who steals lovers..." Calla grumbled, "I guess that's why I want to burn it. I don't want them to see that. I didn't make it with a detachment as if it was going to be sold. I made it like I was going to put it up right next to River's tapestry..." she got back up and kicked sand into the water, letting the cool waters wash over her hot skin, "I can't talk to River about this. She has lived on the mainland for years and yet she would probably just tell me to tell Steve everything I just told you. She hasn't cared for anybody since that /guy/ either. I'm happy for her, but I'm also worried."

Vince leaned back for a moment, staring at the ocean. "I'm worried, too. She's getting a tattoo to cover up that mark that /he/ made on her. With another mark that was suggested by another man." His lips twitched. "Calla you're not a homewrecker. Steve will be touched by your artistic ways and he's going to admire the fact that you care so deeply. Finish the painting, do your minor edits, let it dry, and then take a breath. Steve's an artist, too. I /know/ he goes for sentimental pieces more than detached "fuck this" paintings. He's going to love your painting. Just...just focus on that. If you have to focus on anything."

"Okay...okay. I'm sorry, I know your apartment is on the other side of the town and we probably could've skyped. I was losing my mind, and you always help me think clearly," Calla turned to him and hugged him tightly, "Thank you, Vince."

~*~

((RIVER, then after the whole River scene it'll be a cut then Steve's musings))
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 1:26 am

For some reason, it was a bad day. She was already having a huge nervous break down when she caught sight of her fresh tattoo in the mirror as she dressed herself with shorts and a black tank top. Black watercolor background with a gorgeous red rose that was contrast to it on her thigh, covering up the bite scar. It wasn't bad. When she first got it, she loved it. Now that it was on her skin for three days and still soaking in the ink, she was terrified.

Those bite marks were gone, it should be over. She could feel his skin against her body. She could hear him whisper. Did you really think you could get away from me that easily?

It sent her into a blind panic. She rushed for her phone and pressed a button. Whether it was Calla or Vince or anyone, she didn't care.

When she heard Bucky's hello on the other end however, she burst into tears and fell straight to the ground, covering her mouth.

She felt sick to her stomach, she felt scared. She wanted to hide in the ocean, but she'd lose the gorgeous mark on her thigh. She wanted this damn it! Her thigh throbbed a bit to remind her that her poor leg was still sore from the abuse it took for the ink.

I'm going to prove to you that you are mine. No matter what happens, someone's gonna see these scars and they're going to know...oh yes...

You belong to me, my everything. My little mermaid princess.


He spoke again and she tried to concentrate on his voice. "Re-repeat that?" River took in a large inhale of breath. "I-I can't..."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:18 am

"River, River, River, shhh, listen to me, listen to my voice, honey," Buck said quickly, "Let's just focus on breathing. In...good, yeah, now out...here, let me do it with you," he coaxed, making his inhalation and exhalation noticeable through her broken sobs, until she started to calm down, then he went back to sweet-talking, "You're doing good, honey. That's it. Can you think, now? Can you talk to me? What happened, sweetheart?"
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:06 am

"I'm so sorry." River gasped after a moment as she tried to get herself under control. She did the breathing again, inhaling and letting it out, breaking her sob in the process. She took another breath and she tried to speak. "I t-thought I was doing....I thought that...It was an idea." She took another breath. "I got that tattoo. That we talked about."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 3:22 pm

"What's got you all up in knots? Is it not what you wanted?" Bucky asked softly, "Do you feel like it doesn't change anything? That it was a mistake? Talk to me, honey. Tell me what's wrong."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 3:51 pm

River took a deep breath, feel her throat lump up as she tried to find the words to explain her panic. "What if he sees?" She asked hoarsely. "What if...what if he comes back and he sees that I covered it up?" She felt her stomach twist. "What if it's not the right tattoo? I mean, it's mine...it's..." She swallowed hard. "What if you don't like it? What..." She choked. "He-he told me that it was...it was..." She took a hard breath in and out. She could hear Steve's mumbled concern but Bucky didn't answer him. "No one's going to like me anymore." She felt her heart break. "I ruined all of it didn't I? I fucked up two years. I told Calla he didn't...he didn't mean to. I mean...he was a nice guy...sometimes. Most of the mistakes were mine. He was just trying to protect me an-"
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 4:07 pm

"Stop, stop, /River/," Bucky said firmly now, "Do you /realize/ just /whom/ you've made friends with in the last month? We're goddamn army special forces. If that..." a deep growl, and Steve's voice again, "If that /worm/ comes back, you have at /least/ four people that would watch your six. He told you that bite made you his and your tattoo is telling him to fuck off." His voice softened as he came back to himself, "It's the right tattoo if you like it, River. That's what matters. If /you/ like it. What do you mean no one is going to like you anymore? Honey, we all care about you. It's /okay/. You didn't ruin anything at all. Also...no I don't like it. Because how can I like something I haven't seen yet?"
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 5:18 pm

River burst into tears. "I'm sorry." She curled herself up into a ball. "I'm so sorry. I knew that I was letting my insecurities get in the way." She tried to settle. She breathed, inhaling and exhaling, trying to keep herself calm. "I just got scared." She admitted as she wiped her eyes. "I'm so used to...too looking in the mirror...and seeing it. The tattoo's gorgeous...I do love it...it was a good idea. I just...I just got scared."

"It's okay to get scared, River," Bucky cooed, "It's okay. He doesn't have control over you anymore. You took back your life. That's good. I'm proud of you for that. You're not weak, you're not a coward. He doesn't matter anymore. You matter. You did a good job, honey. I'm glad you like it."

"Thanks." River took a few more steady breaths as she felt herself calm down. He wasn't there. She wasn't weak. She did something good. The tattoo was hers, it was her design and the artist's imagination. "I'm okay." She took a breath and coughed. "It's really pretty. I'll send you a pic when I get off the phone." She took another breath and swallowed. "I feel like a whale that's been beached."

"How about you show me in person?" Bucky suggested, "I'd love that more than a picture on the phone. You should take a nice hot shower. That might be better than a bath right now. Get hydrated and relax and you don't have to transform at all. Call Vince, maybe? Go out to eat or cuddle? Make today about you. You got this, and I'll see you at Steve's party on Monday, okay?"

"Okay. Thanks." River smiled. "I'll annoy Dylan unless he's with his girlfriend, Vince is working and Calla's downstairs at the shop..or did she go out working on the painting? Are we even open?" She slowly got up. "Shower first. Thank you again, Bucky, for listening to me. I'll see you Monday. Go Steve!" And hung up.

Buck stared at his phone and he had to set it of to the side before he crushed it. He felt hands on his shoulders and he closed his eyes, "He abused her so bad. It's a usual situation. She was trying to defend him even though she and everybody knows he was awful. I'm very glad they chased him out of town, or I'd hunt him down."

Steve said silent for a moment, rubbing his lovers shoulders and bringing him close. He could tell, he just knew that Bucky cared for River. Maybe more than just cared. "Abusers know how to play their victims." Steve said softly, gently. "I heard that she got a tattoo...over a bite mark?" He gently ran his hands down Bucky's back before wrapping them around his waist and putting his chin on his shoulder. "She did something very brave. I can imagine what that must feel like. To take back something you never really thought you lost. Of course let's not get our hopes too down. If luck comes our way and he decides to try to show his face and cater to River, well...like you said before. We're army special ops. We know how to hide a body."

"That we do," Buck agreed, "I look forward to seeing it. She sounded like she really wanted my approval, so I'll give it to her. I'm hoping this will boost her confidence. I feel like this week has been rough all around, so starting next week with a bang with your party sounds like just what the doctor ordered. Let's make it worthwhile."

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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:53 pm

Steve looked at the painting that Calla had made for Bucky’s commission. Well technically it was Steve’s, but it was all Bucky’s ideas that were swimming in this gorgeous ocean scenery. It was beautiful, gentle and subdued. Despite that there was Bucky’s print, Calla had poured in much of her soul and hear into this. He could see it in every brush stroke, and how she made him look like a silhouette, trying hard to not show who it was that was there. But Steve’s eyes already knew who it was. He knew that it was Calla’s idea…more or less.

He could feel Bucky approach him and he knew that Bucky saw exactly what he was seeing. It made his heart sink and it made him feel bad. Not that Calla was a bad person, or that Steve didn't wanted to see her. He wanted to. Calla couldn’t hide what she was feeling for him and it was in this picture. He knew that Bucky wanted to be with River. It was in the way he looked at her tattoo and hugged her and kept her close beside him throughout the party. River didn’t mind the touches, she touched just as much back. Of course, River, never the one to leave someone out of a party…would touch and hug Steve.

"I just gave her the basic idea of 'something simple, with a little color' and she took that to a level I didn't expect," Buck admitted as he came up besides Steve and bumped shoulders. Looking up above the fireplace, such a classic place, he smiled softly as the light played across it, making the dark wood frame shine a brighter brown, Calla's signature under the docks in the water at the far bottom corner of the painting, unassuming and unseen unless one knew where to look. "She was shy about it," he told Steve.

Steve glanced over at Bucky before looking back at Calla's painting. "Vince kept asking us about open relationships." Not at the party, but...back when they first met. Steve had wondered about that. Wondered why on earth Vince would ask something like that. To embarrass Calla and River? Or to make sure that they wouldn't get their hopes high and then broken?

"He did," Buck glanced at him, "I've been wanting to ask you...why is it the first dame to cross my path you asked if I wanted to be with, when we've been together for so long? Did I look at her differently? I was trying to be friendly and hopeful, but...I've been wondering."

Steve paused, “It’s the way your eyes lit up when you talked about her to me. When you called her hot and how you got excited about her hair. The longer we got to be around them, the more I noticed how you gravitate to her. Maybe I’m seeing things that aren’t there. But when you saw her mermaid form, you looked like you just saw a goddess you wanted to worship for the rest of your life.”

He looked down at the ground. “I love you.” He said, “...and I know you love me too. I know that I’m having feelings towards Calla. I know that you’re having feelings toward River. She brings out the best in you, Buck. She brings out that boy who was my friend in high school. The one that smiles a lot and is playful. She makes you confident. I like that about her. I like that she can do that for you. I think it’d be a shame for you to decide not to go after someone that makes you shine.”

"I don't want to break things off with you," Buck shook his head, reaching up and caressing Steve's cheek, "So...do you think we should try it? The open relationship thing? We'll still have each other, but...we should have the freedom to try things with the girls without feeling guilty, like kissing and flirting. I feel better now that we've spent time with them for a while to get to know them, too. I didn't want to just jump right into it."

Steve looked up at Bucky and gently took Bucky's hand and moved so that he could press a kiss and let him go, letting the carcass finish it's trail. "If this is what you want." He said softly. "I don't want to break things off with you either. I know River won't mind, Calla might be different. I'm going to say this right here and now though." He watched Bucky. "If we decide to marry our girls, we marry them. Our relationship still remains open." He watched him. "It's not negotiable. We're with each other till the end of the line. They have to know that and understand that if they want to be with us. We're with them too though...if we get that far, when we do."

A relieved, heavy breath left Buck and he hugged Steve fiercely, nuzzling his shoulder, "Okay...okay. That makes me feel so much better. I didn't...I didn't want you to feel like I was abandoning you or anything, and I don't want you to feel like I'm holding you back, either. I want you to do what you want for you, too. I love you, Stevie. We can do this." He pulled away and looked at him with a beaming smile, "I think Calla's going to be a lot of fun when you reassure her that she's not stealing you from me or getting between us."

"I think River might try to jump you." Steve smiled a little, feeling the weight fall off his shoulders like a burden was dropped. "Should we...invite them to dinner on the mainlands?" He asked curiously. "I'd rather them be able to get away from us if they feel uncomfortable rather than wait it out. River can't transform with a new tattoo anyway."

"Double date, so they know we aren't just saying things?" Buck asked, tilting his head just a bit, moving so he could grab his phone out of his pocket, "We haven't really talked about food with them, I wonder what their favorites are. We should let them pick, since we eat pretty much anything."

Steve smiled warmly as he listened to Bucky's voice as he answered to River. He looked back up at the painting and took a breath in and out. He hoped the girls knew what they were getting into.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:42 pm

"You two look so lovely!" Bucky chirped as he and Steve reached the restaurant that the girls suggested and he strode over to River, grabbing her by the waist and giving her a twirl, grinning at her shriek of surprise and he put her down, "Hey! You're wearing heels!" He noted as her head came just under his chin. She was able to wear things on her legs now, so she wore black tights that were stylized ripped, a black skirt over it that just barely brushed her knees, and he had to snicker a little at the sugar skull printed on her top.

"You hardly ever come on to the mainland just to grab a bite to eat. So I thought why not style it up?" River smiled brightly. "Calla said to cool it on the darks...so I decided to skip dark make up." Her lips were a bright red, and her eyeliner was on point, but other than that, she had really toned it down to keep herself from looking washed out. "Hey Steve." She smiled as she walked over and hugged him. "Come on, we were just waiting for you to grab a booth or table."

Calla was playing off of her hair with how her maxi dress with the ruffled stretchy bodice and spaghetti straps started off with an aqua blue, went to a green lagoon and then back to the darker blue. It barely brushed over her dark brown sandals. She had her hair in a waterfall braid to top it off and she shifted, furrowing her brows at how Bucky spun River around like they'd been together for ages. Her makeup was a lot more subtle, with a rosey gloss she could easily reapply and natural shades for her eye-shadow to make her pale green eyes pop out.

Steve sighed as he walked over to Calla and smiled. "You look real gorgeous." He smiled. He knew that Calla would find it even more suspicious than River if he suddenly started hugging her. "I like how your dress brings out the color of your eyes. Did you have to wait a long time?"

No, not really," Calla shook her head, cheeks becoming as pink as her gloss, and she looked away, fiddling with her white purse that was slung over her shoulder, "Maybe ten minutes. River was really eager so we were actually early, and I'm sure you two haven't been here before so we aren't surprised you're late. We weren't worried, considering Bucky's the one who offered."

"What kind of food is served here, again?" Buck asked as he hooked his arm with River's, "Let's go find a seat! Booth sounds nice. Private."

"Italian." River didn't understand what the good mood was about, but she was happy that Bucky was cheerful. There must be a celebration going on. Why else would they call? It clicked in her mind and she hooked her arm tightly with Bucky's. "Come on then. Let's tell the host." She guided him to the stand and then together they walked off to the booth. River had slid into the seat and laughed in surprise when Bucky slid in next to her, hip checking her along the way. Steve on the other hand, just smiled politely and waited for Calla to get in before also sitting next to her. "My gosh! How long are you going to keep us in suspense about this?" River grinned.

"Suspense about what? I don't know what you're talking about," Bucky brushed his fingers over River's forehead to get hair out of her eyes, toying with some strands further down by her neck, twisting them around his finger and he brought them to his lips to kiss it, "I love how soft your hair is."

"Bucky you're going to frighten her before you even tell her what's going on." Steve grinned a little as he gently placed one of his hands on the table and looked at Calla. "You should forgive my friend. He think he's being cute."

"He has every right to be!" River blushed though she turned to Steve. "Congratulations!" She clapped her hands together. "I'm certain the adoption will go smoothly! I can't imagine better parents than the-" She blinked as Steve turned the brightest red and Bucky burst into laughter. "Um..."

Bucky had to clasp his hand over his mouth to stifle the sound so he wouldn't draw attention to themselves. He tried so hard to keep it in that tears welled at the sides of his eyes and he shook his head, grinning as he pulled his hand away, "No! No guppies! That's not what this is about!" He looked at River in amusement, "Is my flirting really too subtle for you, sweetheart?"

"I certainly noticed you were flirting with her, but River can be a bit dense," Calla drawled, chewing on her lip.

"Steve and I are still together, but we decided to go with the open relationship Vince kept nagging us about," Bucky clarified for them.

River blinked slowly. "You want..." She looked at Calla curiously. Steve was looking nervous, but he was also looking determined. "Is it something you want or is it because Vince is nagging you?" She asked, looking at Bucky. "Or Steve for that matter?" She looked at Steve.

"I want it." Steve smiled. "It was my suggestion." He took a breath. "I saw what it was Calla painted in her painting and I see the way Bucky reacts to you. It's not fair to keep you two away from each other, and I want to see where Calla and I go. The only thing, the only limit I have...is that you have to know Bucky and I are in this till the very end. Meaning, if we get married to you girls, we're still together, too."

"Why on earth would we split you up?" River frowned, furrowing her brows.

"I would never suggest anything else," Calla shook her head so hard her braid swung around, "That's what I've been trying to avoid. I'm sorry. I see how close you two are. I didn't mean to force you into anything, I..."

"Steve, make her shut up," Bucky said, though there was no malice in it, just exasperation as he rolled his eyes.

"Calla I /want/ this." Steve quickly grabbed her hand and squeezed. "You're not forcing me into anything. Vince isn't forcing me into anything. Hell neither is River forcing me into anything. I want to see where you and I go. You're not in between me and Bucky."

"But what about Guppies?" Steve blinked and looked over. River looked concerned. "Let's say we do get far. We get super far. What happens if one of us has a Guppy?" She rubbed her lips together. "Marriages is one thing, but...Guppies happen."

"You're right." Steve said soothingly, knowing well how River's mind was turning. "Guppies happen." He took a breath. "I for one will stay and help raise. If we fall apart, I'll still be around. I'm not abandoning a kid, I'm not abandoning the mother. We'll talk about it as it happens. But that's my answer for the moment. If /you/ have a Guppy, River, I hope to be there, too."

"We'll raise our guppies together, is what I'm hoping," Buck agreed, watching Calla as she continued to stare at her hand that Steve had grasped. It was like her brain short-circuited and it was cute. "Steve would make a great Uncle, and I'm sure I'm going to be a pretty hairbrained dad, but I'll try, and everybody will be there. We'd help each other." He slung his arm over River's shoulders, bringing her close.

Was this why Steve always stayed so close to Bucky? His touch...he /had/ to know that it was soothing, grounding. She had to remind herself he was a plant-type, and while magic users were quite unstable, he was a compliment to their powers and abilities. Versatile. Even Vince had said it. Calla swallowed thick and nodded, "I...I understand. Is...River...should I? Or...save it?" she looked at her friend, uncertain. River'd told Bucky about her crappy ass abusive boyfriend of two years ago, but...Steve didn't know much about her past, except she knew how to lockpick.

"It's up to you." River said softly, knowing what her friend was talking about. "You don't have to, not in this setting. You can do it with him in another if you feel better about it. Again. Up to you. I'm here with you. Like always."

A moment and she felt Steve's and Bucky's eyes on her, but she shook her head. She was okay if Steve told Bucky afterwards, but she would rather tell him later in private. "Yeah...not here...not now. This...this is a double date, isn't it?" She asked with a smile, trying to brush it off and she hesitantly squeezed Steve's hand back, since he hadn't let go, "Let's enjoy ourselves and this opportunity. You and Bucky are really cute, River. Our server is coming over, anyway."

After ordering their drinks, the server agreeing to come back once they decided on food, Buck popped open the menu and just about drooled everywhere, "Wow! They have such a wide variety! Hey, that reminds me of something I was wondering before. What other kinds of food do you girls like?"

"I like sushi, and miso soup, but I always feel like I'm eating River's family or something so I wait until it's just Vince and I," Calla admitted with a soft laugh.

River stuck her tongue out at Calla before looking at the menu. "I don't like eating fish." She admitted. "I mean, if I'm in the sea and I can't get to the mainland I'll eat fish. But there's really not much I won't eat. Just nothing that has fish in it. Though I do plead guilty. I do like clam chowder. At least Calla's mom's recipe."

Calla beamed, "My mom makes amazing soup. We should wait before you guys ask to meet her for a homecooked meal. She'll grill you like a drill sergeant, I'm sure of it. Worse than Vince. She /loves/ Vince and is so sad he's asexual. She wished once he and River were /actually/ married instead of just play."

Bucky laughed again, "I believe it! He was so offended about you cheating on him with a rock," he grinned and flipped the page, "Ooooh, Steve, cheesecake for desert!"

Steve also flipped towards the dessert. "They have chocolate cake here too." He mused. "Oh it's a lava one. I think you and River would go for that. I know how bad your sweet tooth is." He smiled as he flipped back to the menu. "I think I know what I'm going to get." He set it down and looked at Calla. "How did you become friends with Vince?" He asked curiously.

"School, actually. We were all classmates, along with Dylan and his girlfriend. They separated us on purpose since we would all make a ruckass," Calla smirked fondly at the memory, "River didn't join us until junior year when she was sixteen and that's when things went downhill...for the school," she grinned even wider, "Vince and River were a /pain/. That was my goth phase, about fifteen to eighteen, but that's also where she got a lot of her clothes once I switched to going for bright and colorful. I was always a rebel, but I broke into the school more times than I can count on my fingers and toes, but only got caught maybe five times."

"Here I was, thinking you were some sort of angel with pretty white wings. Nope. Turns out you're a little devil," Bucky cracked a smirk of his own.

"Why in the school?" Steve questioned, raising his eyebrow up. "I know of teenagers that would do more than just about anything to get away from school. Breaking /in/?"

"To see if I could, and once I knew I could, I would draw on the walls around the school. I knew how to avoid the cameras after the first few times I broke in. The next couple were because teacher caught me, either there late or early," Calla set her menu down as well, River following suit, but Bucky seemed to be having difficulty deciding, "River, help the poor guy out. Give him some suggestions."

teve snickered as River blinked and looked over Bucky's shoulder to see what it was he was struggling over. "Too many you like or nothing you want to eat?" She asked.

"Too many I like," Buck told her sheepishly, pointing at about three he'd been able to narrow it down two, one basically on each page aside from the desert. He was happy with her opinions on them, made his choice, and he gathered all the menus, setting them to the side, "Wonderful! So, so, River, you play games, right? Pokemon Go, Fates...what else?"

River grinned. "I like playing Legend of Zelda. My favorite is Majora's mask. I also like playing Left 4 Dead 2 because Nick's hysterical. I also like playing Dragon Age. Vince is trying to get me into Assassin's Creed. I also enjoy Ori and the Blind Forest. I /want/ an Ori." She smiled brightly. "But other than that. I like playing Clue and I like playing Candyland."

"Ever played Cards Against Humanity?" Steve couldn't help but to ask.

"Vince is the worst. But so is Dylan." River's eyes widened. "Oh my god the /things/ that they /say/."

"It's the /best/ thing to play," Calla laughed, "Dylan has the biggest blackest box. He forwent the holiday ones, but they come out with enough expansions anyhow it doesn't matter."

"I think if he used the holiday ones, anyone of us whose religious is gonna hate him afterwards." River sighed loudly. "You know what's worse about that game?"

"What?" Steve couldn't help but to grin.

"Is if you have to drink every time you lose a round or win a round." River groaned.

"Oh...you'd hate us," Buck glanced at Steve, "Steve and I, because of our magic boosts...we can't get drunk."

"/No/," Calla's jaw dropped, "No fair!"

"Jesus Buck." Steve was cracking up. "I can't tell if your nervous or you're trying to impress River. This is just as bad as our first date."

River perked up and she looked at Steve. "I'm kind of hoping it's the impress route. I already make people nervous enough if I start singing and put my energy into it."

"Oh that's a thing?" Steve blinked in surprise. "I thought...you know...that only happened in fairy-tales."

"I...might've accidentally made Dylan a little higher than a kite last time I sang." River looked nervous. "Vince was laughing so hard, because he kept walking into things and talking to random inanimate objects. It was sad. I didn't mean to do it to him. All I did was take a /bath/ because I was dehydrated. I didn't think the walls were so thin."

"Which is why I made the rule she can only take a bath at night. She goes to bed an hour after I do because her hair's still wet, but, if she does it in the morning I'm all loopy. I think there's such a thing as an endurance for it, because it doesn't affect me /that/ bad anymore, but I /do/ know it doesn't affect women nearly as much as men. Vince is just immune, the fucker."

Buck lowered his voice and it came out in a purr, "That sounds /really/ sexy."

"It's kind of...supposed to be sexy? That's how we call a mate." River's cheeks burned warm. "Besides luring people to drown I mean if you go the fairy-tale route."

"He's really the kinky type, isn't he?" Calla looked to Steve.

"You have no idea." Steve muttered to Calla. "I'm glad River can provide him with new ideas. I'm certain he's going to have a boatload."

Giggling, she just watched as River and Bucky were leaning close. She wanted that. She panicked at first, but knowing Steve wanted it too...she took her drink and stayed quiet for a bit. They weren't nearly that close yet, but she looked forward to the day she could unabashedly lean her head on Steve's shoulder and he'd wrap his arm around her. For now...hand holding was okay. It surprised her how long they'd just been that way, their joined hands sitting between their thighs under the table. Did he not notice or was he just as relieved that he could? It didn't matter. It felt nice, and she was glad their food was taking plenty of time to get there.

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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Thu Aug 25, 2016 5:25 pm

'Vince should be home from the library soon, Angie. I'm glad today's been a good day. We'll hang out tomorrow when I'm off,' Dylan promised in his text and hit send just as the door popped open. He looked up to see the man in question stumble through the door, groaning and once he locked it, he ambled over to the couch and landed face-first into it. Dylan was on his computer which was stationed in the living room. They didn't watch TV, too boring, but video games were fun. Vince preferred streaming in private so his set up was in his room, "Was is rough at the library or something? Someone not know how to use the computers or didn't want to leave?" he asked.
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Fri Aug 26, 2016 10:02 am

"Were you texting Angel?" Vince asked as he rolled over a little, though still not getting up. "I'm so glad that all you had to do to get her was to present her with a flower. She was so happy to get it and she understood immediately that you wanted to be with her. Calla and River on the other hand? It took them about a month, and a double date to gets things hashed out with Bucky and Steve."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Fri Aug 26, 2016 9:24 pm

"I was..." Dylan said first, listening to Vince and he shook his head, "Not everyone is as certain of their feelings. Steve and Bucky are boyfriends. It's only natural that Calla was hesitant and Bucky wasn't sure what to do, either. I haven't met either of them, but it sounded to me he relies heavily on Steve. So, it really comes as no surprise to me that it took Calla's painting for Steve's birthday to be the straw that broke the camel's back, per se."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Fri Aug 26, 2016 11:52 pm

Vince sighed loudly as he got onto his back. "I'm worried for the girls. River's in deep with Bucky I don't think she realizes how deep she's at, and Calla's so uncertain about this she's treading water. Not that I blame them. Calla's fucker was a fucking moron and River's heart is pretty much on her sleeve. Which is scary as all hell." He crossed his arms behind his head. "I just...can't bear to see them get hurt. River stayed with the guy for two years, Wicker. Two. Years. She endured abuse and torture. How long will Bucky and Steve decide to keep the relationship open for? And Calla. Man...she can't take a compliment. How on earth is she going to stay in love with Steve? Or Steve with her? I mean, unless he has insecurities that can line up with how long the American Constitution is, I don't know."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Sat Aug 27, 2016 12:12 am

"Calla was with that guy's friend for almost as long," Dylan reminded, "It took Angie's first mental breakdown for Calla to break free and from there she helped River see the light of day again. Calla's a tough cookie, even though she's shy. She takes compliments all the time at work for her paintings, you know? She takes compliments from us, too. I think it's because they're coming from someone she likes that it's messing her up. Friends and customers are one thing. The last person she liked made her feel like crap about herself and what she did, and she nearly stopped painting. She used her magic and /burned/ a painting she really liked in order to prove she wouldn't be held down anymore. Almost burnt down the store, too, if it wasn't for him putting it out with his own magic, but by then she was already gone."

Dylan tapped his chin, "River does have her heart on her sleeve, and while that almost got Calla killed with that guy and his friend, it's very much a boon with Bucky. He doesn't have to /guess/ what she wants, because she lays most of it out for him on a silver platter. The tattoo thing. She didn't dial you, Vince. She didn't dial Calla. Her fingers found Bucky's number and he calmed her down and made her feel very proud to have the tattoo once she got over the panic. He boosted her confidence with that conversation and inspired her. I saw she's completed a /huge/ chunk of her tapestry compared to the little bits here and there."
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Sat Aug 27, 2016 7:32 pm

"True." Vince had to admit everything that his friend was saying was hitting the nail on the head. River was getting that tapestry done faster and faster. She really did do a huge chunk of it when her insomnia hit and soon after her little freak out about the tattoo. He had forgotten that Calla had known the guy just as long as River had been with her boyfriend.

"You know speaking of Angel, I haven't seen her in a while. Is she doing alright?" Vince looked over at Dylan curiously. "She's not...she's not back there is she?"
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PostSubject: Re: Coastal Living - Captain America Fantasy AU   Sat Aug 27, 2016 10:04 pm

"I would tell you if she was," Dylan said soothingly, "She's been trying hard since last time, but...she's been getting antsy again, like did before the other two times. I've been thinking...that there's a pattern, Vince. Each time, something bad happens. The girls and their abusers, and then...last time, with the huge catastrophe with Hydra's magic user forces. That time...a month ago, when Calla's last boat capsized...During that storm I was with her and she was glued to me while we played video games to drown out the noise. I even tried comforting her by making love to her, but she was just...not right. We all know the wires are crossed weird in her head, but it wasn't good. Since then she's constantly asking 'what time do you work tomorrow'?"
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