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 Take me back to the start, Tag: Stitch // Natasha
Spooky
 Posted: Jan 22 2017, 04:44 PM
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Everything was finally getting back to normal. Without the money Barney had stole from him Clint hadn't been able to completely fix up all the damage done to his building, but all the residents had pitched in to help where they could. Carpenters, electricians; any work they couldn't do themselves they called in favours. It was really shaping up again, and the community vibe was even stronger for it, stronger for everything they had been through.

As for Clint himself, he was healing up nicely. His shoulder was still sore from the gunshot, but he didn't let it slow him down too much. Everything else seemed minor in comparison, though if he was completely honest it was the shot Lucky had taken that had worried him more. Clint was used to it, but the poor dog had been through so much already. Still, he was strong, and he'd pulled through again. He still wore a bandage wrapped around his middle, but soon the stitches could come out. Soon he would be better.

It was a little hard to believe, after the months of pain and fear the tracksuit mafia had put them through, that it was all finally over. Clint still wasn't sleeping much at nights, whether from pain or anxiety, and usually didn't even bother to go to bed. It was easier to rest on the sofa, and it saved Lucky from any discomfort trying to follow him up the stairs. That's where Clint was now, stretched out facing the back of the chesterfield with his head buried under a pillow, Lucky asleep on the floor beside it. It was late, dark, and quiet, and he actually managed to drift off for a while...

Notes: Voila! // Tag: Stitch
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 22 2017, 05:16 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
476 posts
Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
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& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

She wondered idly if he knew that she'd visited him while he was in the hospital; he was out cold and she wasn't sure anyone had mentioned it to him but then she hadn't exactly been very open about her visits but that was Natasha for you; she was secretive to a fault and she kept everyone at arms length whether she truly intended to or not. It was something of a habit of hers by now.

She had been through far too much over the years, on and off she'd lived over ninety years and she'd lost track of all of the people that she'd been over those years but yet she remembered everyone she'd killed; it was a bittersweet thing. She was reminded of everything that she'd done over the years in flashbacks and nightmares and yet half of the time she couldn't honestly tell you who she was working for at the time or who she'd been expected to be.

That was just what happened with a life like hers though. She was a tool, a soldier sold to the highest bidder for whatever they might have wanted. She wasn't supposed to care what she was doing because they were just going to wipe it away anyway; the Super Soldier serum that they'd given her had created the perfect little weapon just like they'd intended all along and this one didn't work for the good guys. She was at the disposal of whomever paid the most.

During that time, Natasha had no life or free will of her own and that had continued on and off for more decades than she even kept track of, and then she'd been assigned a mission where she'd met Clint Barton; she was supposed to be using him. He was supposed to be a means to an end and nothing more but the son of a bitch had gone and fallen in love with her and worse still, she had with him. She cursed herself inwardly for that for the longest time.

But then she'd realized - perhaps a little too late - that it was the love that she felt for Clint Barton that reminded her that she was human and that that was okay. It didn't matter what they'd tried to turn her into, it didn't matter how much of her they'd taken away or all of the blood she had on her hands because of them because to him, she was worthy of love and he made her want to be a better person and she had no goddamn idea how to deal with that and so she ran. That was what Natasha did best.

She wasn't good with people and she sure as hell wasn't good with emotional attachment; that was the kind of thing that sent her running for the hills (Metaphorically; she didn't want to actually live out there in the wilderness, she liked her apartment thank you very much) and that was something that she probably should have worked on long before she'd torn out Clint's heart and stomped on it. That didn't mean that she didn't feel bad about it of course because she did, more so than she knew how to explain...

But at the time she'd felt like all she could do was run. She had no idea who she wanted to be back then but now she did, it was strange how much could change in a matter of weeks. Now, she had her very own shiny SHIELD lanyard and a bunch of resources at her disposal and yet she still wanted to turn to him when it all got too much, how ironic was that? She'd never really been a person that needed a place to run, not until him anyway.

And that was how a former assassin-turned-spy had found her way to the apartment of one Clint Barton, and how she'd crept quietly up the stairs and leaned down in front of his dog, scratching him behind the ears as she offered the pup a soft smile; she was glad to see he was okay though in truth, her eyes barely left Clint, not even as she plucked up Lucky's squeaky bone and tossed it directly at his head, sitting back down on her legs as Natasha watched the slumbering man with a raised eyebrow.

"Wake up or I'm gonna eat all your food, drink all of your coffee and steal your dog." Natasha muttered, half playful and half probably entirely serious, at least about the former two, anyway. She was starving, exhausted and she didn't really fancy spending yet another night alone.

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 22 2017, 06:57 PM
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To say that Clint and Natasha had a complicated history was an understatement. He had first encountered her when his initial attempt at being a hero had been misinterpreted and he'd ended up on the run instead. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen stopped to help him out and he was a goner from that moment. He'd fallen head over heals for her and had been willing to do anything she asked, even kill Iron Man if that was what she wanted.

Luckily that plan had never come to fruition, and Clint had realised that he wasn't the criminal type. All he wanted to be was a hero, and eventually Natasha had defected from her Russian rulers and joined him. Unfortunately, while his life as a hero had gone swimmingly, his life with Natasha hadn't. She broke his heart, and he'd tried to fight for her, even against The Man Without Fear himself, but he'd never won her back.

The two of them moved on, and Clint found many more loves. He'd even gotten married, and he was sure he'd love Bobbi forever, but as with all his relationships it too failed. Funny thing, though, he was still friends with all of his former loves, but none moreso than Natasha. He had known her longer than anyone, save for his brother, and their relationship had only grown and deepened over the years. He trusted her, depended on her; she was his best friend. He'd told her that once, and it was a moment he still remembered clearly. She had kissed him. Probably just to show gratitude, but he'd gotten caught up in the moment and kissed her back. It had been intense, and for that short time the whole world fell away and everything felt right again. Then reality came back.

He hadn't been able to forget that, and he thought it had a pretty big role in his downward spiral, at least when it came to his sort of relationship with Jessica. He'd ended up cheating on her with the first mysterious redhead that he'd encountered, had really hurt her, and had wound up involved in a big dangerous mess because of it.

That was all over with now, but not the feelings that kiss had reawakened. Part of him had always loved Natasha, but he'd been able to move on. Now he didn't know what to think anymore. She'd moved on too, and she'd been the one that had told him she'd never loved him anyway.

See? More than a little complicated.

He might have been dreaming about her right then when something suddenly bounced off his head. “Not now, Lucky,” he mumbled, burying his face further in the couch cushions. He didn't hear her speak; in fact, he didn't hear anything, not without his hearing aids that he'd taken out before laying down.

Notes: I got a little carried away... // Tag: Stitch
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 22 2017, 07:37 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
476 posts
Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
administrators


& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

She huffed out a sigh; she should have predicted that he'd take out his hearing aids but it occurred to her in that moment that she'd made a potentially fatal mistake; she hadn't stopped to scope out the room. She knew he was alone fair enough but that didn't mean she shouldn't exercise a little bit of caution, especially when it came to the amount of enemies that she had out there.

She couldn't take the chance that she was safe anywhere, not even with him. She wanted to though, God, did she want to. If she had to choose one person in the world that knew her better than anyone else it would of course be Clint but that was exactly why she tried to keep as much distance as she could between the two of them. He deserved better and he didn't deserve to get a bullet in the head to send a message to her or tortured for information when it came to her. She'd never be able to live with that.

If that meant that she had to make him hate her then she'd do it. She'd told him that she didn't love him in the first place and that it had all been a part of her bigger game and she'd made it look so easy that she doubted he even knew that it killed her inside. The words tasted bitter; they were like poison and she wasn't sure she'd ever truly be able to live with it but it had made him move on and that was what she wanted; she wanted him to stop loving her so that she'd stop being a risk to him because she wanted him to live, very much so.

And if that life had to be without her then she'd told herself that she was fine with that but then she'd kissed him. He'd told her she was his best friend and she'd kissed him because in that moment she knew that she needed to remind him that she did indeed love him. She'd put that distance there for both their sakes but that did not mean that she didn't regret it and she didn't wish that she could find a way to bridge those gaps.

That was why she'd taken an apartment in New York City. That was why she always came back. That was why no matter how far she ran or how far away her missions took her she always, always came back to the same place in case he needed her. Picking up another toy, Natasha threw it playfully at his head again before she stood up straight and dusted off the knees of her jeans, scooping up his hearing aids in her hand as she sat down next to him and prodded him gently in the leg.

Taking the opportunity of course to check him over and see how his wounds were healing; it was second nature to her at this point. She needed to know if he was safe, that was why she'd been there even if he didn't know she was. He didn't need to know. He didn't need to know that she'd stayed with him even when he felt like he was alone because that would complicate things all the more and they couldn't afford for things to get any more tricky between the two of them. She couldn't drag him back into all of that again.

She couldn't break him like that again because she knew that she'd break herself beyond repair this time if she even tried, but that did not stop her from kicking herself internally for it anyway; she had a mission, she should be a million miles away from here and yet she sat here regardless, the darkness consumed her enough to hide the bruises on her beautiful face and the cuts that she had to her upper body and chest. A mission gone bad would be a mild way to describe what had happened but she'd made it home.

Albeit just and she'd lost a friend out there but at least she was still alive and that was why she was here now. How was it that every other time she didn't know where to turn she found herself always turning to him?

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 23 2017, 04:45 PM
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Clint groaned again when yet another rubber toy bounced off his shoulder this time, but even his sleep clouded mind recognized something wasn't right when the cushion sagged under a fairly still weight, and the prodding in his leg was lacking in claws or a cold, wet nose.

Rolling over quickly, he stared bleary eyed at the figure before him. Even in his confused state and in the darkness he knew Natasha instantly. He was sure he could always pick her out, her face was so ingrained in his mind, his heart.

“Tasha?” he murmured in confusion, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He almost asked if he was dreaming, but that was probably not the best way to start a conversation in case he wasn't. “How'd you get in?”

This was also a stupid question considering who he was asking. Was there a place in the world she couldn't get into if she wanted to? His shoddy locks were hardly a challenge for the Black Widow.

Notes: adorable babies // Tag: Stitch
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 23 2017, 05:08 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
476 posts
Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
administrators


& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

Yes, she was aware of the fact that she should let Clint sleep because she knew just how much he loved his sleep, they kind of had that in common even though most of the time her sleeping pattern was all kinds of screwed up because it never got the chance to regulate on any particular timezone and she was kind of used to that by now. She'd been on the move for so long it had become the only normal thing to her.

Well that and Liho. She remained adamant that the cat was not hers; she didn't have pets or ties or family or anything else of the sort. She didn't have close friends - with the exception of Clint - and she sure as hell didn't fall in love - again, with the exception of Clint - and that was the way she wanted the world to see her. She wanted it to think that she was cold and uncaring so less people would have targets on their backs because of her enemies.

She'd been on missions for about as long as she could stand without burning herself out at this point but even she knew that sooner or later she was going to have to come home and face everything that she didn't want to face, and that included him. She'd had Maria feeding her updates with how he was doing while he was in the hospital for the last few days and while he was recovering at home but she hadn't given any real answers as to why she wanted to know.

She just stated that she just did. She had an interest in Clint Barton's life and that was that, no one else had to know that the reason she cared so much for him was indeed because she loved him even though a part of her suspected that Maria probably knew. She wasn't a person that you could really keep secrets from; she read people for a living. She knew when people were lying but Natasha knew how to keep her emotions in check when it truly counted. She was good at pretending she didn't have any at all for that matter.

Not that it was true but no one needed to know. What business of it was theirs anyway? As he slowly woke, a soft, fond smile spread across Natasha's lips as she held her hand out to pass him his hearing aids, refraining from laughing as he asked her how she got in. This was Natasha; she could break into pretty much anywhere and she knew that because Lucky knew her, he wasn't going to bark the whole place down so she didn't have to worry about being met with any hostile action.

That was why here was so safe for her. While he fixed his hearing aids, she merely sat and glanced around the room; it was strange how easy it was for her to get lost in all of the familiar sights of a past that she had sworn she didn't care about. People were such strange creatures and she was no exception to that rule only she'd been a person for a whole lot less time than most people had. Before that she was essentially a very highly trained robot and she wasn't allowed to have feelings.

That was why she'd fought them so hard. "Right, like it was hard." Natasha muttered playfully; she knew that he wasn't angry. He looked a whole hell of a lot different when he was angry; his expressions were as familiar to her as her own were at this point but that was what happened when you got as close to someone as she did to Clint Barton. It was probably a mistake that she'd pay for someday but that day wasn't going to be today.

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 23 2017, 05:51 PM
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To say Clint was surprised to see her was an understatement. Last he'd heard she was out of the country somewhere on some top secret mission. Of course to Maria everything was top secret, but she'd given him a weird, creepy little smile when he'd asked so he hadn't probed further. It wasn't like it was any of his business, or he had a good reason for asking. He just... wanted to know.

And now she was here, breaking into his apartment and waking him up. This had to be bad, right? She couldn't wait until morning, or knock on his door like a normal person, so it had to be bad news.

Taking his hearing aids form her hand, he pulled himself up a little to lean against the arm of the couch as he put them in place. He tried to prepare himself for something horrible. Clearly she was okay, so it couldn't be the worst, but they had so many mutual friends, teammates, that it could be about, and his concern was obvious on his face.

When she spoke, though, she didn't sound upset. In fact, her voice sounded delightfully playful.

He had really missed the sound of her voice.

“Hey, I haven't gotten round to boosting the security yet,” he said, though they both knew this wasn't even on his list of priorities. Running a hand back through his already disheveled hair, he tilted his head and looked at her, his eyes slowly adjusting to the darkness. “Nice surprise,” he said, and it was, but it was also obvious in his tone that he was wondering why the surprise.

Notes: adorable babies // Tag: Stitch
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 24 2017, 11:20 AM
Quote
❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
476 posts
Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
administrators


& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

Being taken and brainwashed had made Natasha feel helpless and she hated that; she wasn't their weapon anymore. She'd defected, she'd joined up with the good guys even though if anyone threw the word 'Hero' her way she'd end up scoffing and walking off, but she was trying to make a difference. She still killed but she only killed bad people, people that she knew deserved it because she didn't want to be responsible for more innocent blood being spilled.

That was why she had them vetted so carefully. Being back there and having them in her head again made her feel like everything that she'd been through, everything that she'd suffered and everything that she'd tried to change meant nothing. They could take her and brainwash her and make her into their perfect little killer again and there was no one out there that could stop them. They had the kind of reach that people couldn't cut off.

But Bucky and Clint had come for her. They'd been intent on bringing her home and she was glad - albeit a little bit confused - that Bucky had turned to Clint to do that; he was probably the one person out there in the world that knew her better than anyone else did, in truth he probably knew Natasha better than she knew herself half of the time but that was just... Clint. He had a way of getting close whether you wanted him to or not.

Sometimes a little too close and that always forced the same reaction from her: She withdrew. She pushed him away and she made sure that he wouldn't follow her when she left because she knew just what to say to hurt him and she hated herself for that. She hated that it hurt her to say it just as much as it heard him to hear it but he was far better off without her in his life in that way, anyway. Clint had enough going on without that, too.

Then there was Bucky and her feelings for him; he'd trained her and the two of them had become far too close for the Red Room to allow but it didn't seem to matter. Every time they wiped them away somehow they always came back to remembering. She knew that there was likely a reason for it, there was a connection there that was not meant to die and while she was aware of that, she knew that Bucky, too, was too broken in his own ways to have to deal with someone like her.

Whether they liked it or not, they were a constant reminder of the time each of them spent in the dark but Clint? He was her light. He was the reminder of the better person that she'd become and that was why when it truly counted she'd turn to him. He knew her better. He knew who she wanted to be and who she had been and he could differentiate the two better than anyone else she'd ever known could. Clint understood her in a way no one else in the world could and she loved him for that.

And love him indeed she did. She might not have wanted to admit it but she did. "Maybe I can help with that; I'm taking a couple days off so I'll need something to occupy my time." which of course was Natasha's way of saying that she needed time to heal up because she'd essentially run herself into the ground after everything that had happened. She'd been trying to run so far and so fast that it had taken her longer than she'd have liked to realize she couldn't run from herself.

Life was strange that way, she supposed. "I needed a safe place." she admitted softly with a gentle shrug of her shoulders. "And I figure you're safer than anyone else I know. You always have my back..."

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 24 2017, 01:53 PM
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The surprises just kept on coming. An offer to help him boost his security was definitely unexpected, as was the note that she was taking some time off. It wasn't like heroes worked all the time, but while Clint spent his time away from the Avengers hanging around his apartment, Natasha had her own business on the side. He didn't really like to think about it, as their stance on killing was the one thing they never saw eye to eye on, but he knew it was a thing. The less he knew about it, though, the better.

He thought about making some sort of inappropriate joke, but before he could come up with anything suitable her voice grew softer and he was left at a loss for words. It wasn't like Natasha to admit to needing help, but then Clint wasn't just anyone. They always had a special connection, and he liked to think she knew she didn't have to pretend with him. Maybe his words to her as he'd patched her up the day she'd kissed him had stuck with her. “If you're hurt you say something. You don't have to act tough. Everyone knows how tough you are.” But then maybe she'd always known that, with him at least. She had hid her injury from the rest of the team, but she'd let him see it, let him help her. Good to know that hadn't changed.

“Sure, yeah. You know I'm always here for you,” he said, sitting up fully, the remnants of sleep faded. It was flattering that he was the person she thought of when she needed a safe person, the person she thought of as safe. He'd be lying if it didn't make his stomach clench and his heart skip just thinking about it. She could have gone to anyone, including Tony's high security tower, but she'd come here instead. “You can have the bed upstairs. I end up on the couch half the time anyway. Sometimes those stairs just take too much effort.” He gave a lopsided grin, shifting just a little closer, trying to get a good look at her in the darkness.

Notes: my heart cant' take it // Tag: Stitch
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 24 2017, 02:52 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
476 posts
Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
administrators


& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

No one trained by the program was supposed to be weak. Push harder, fight harder, train harder.. They were supposed to be the best. Elite. The very best at being monsters because that's what the world wanted them to be, or so they'd been led to believe by their handlers anyway. It still took all she had not to reach out and pass him a gun even to this day; protocol stated the handlers always had to be armed.

Occasionally she'd remember something from her programmed days and she'd stare off into the distance a little bit. She'd feel just that little more empty when she came around because it felt like it was yet another piece of her that she couldn't hold onto but then at the same time she knew that it wasn't'; it was seriously complicated and she was aware of that but she didn't exactly know the best ways to keep the two lives separate. The person she had become vs the person she was turned into was a hard battle.

She could count stars, marks and trace old breaks on xrays and she had no idea where they'd even come from to begin with because it was something inside of her that was gone. Like someone had erased it from the chalk board but they didn't quite get it all off so there were traces of what had been there before underneath all of it. To this day she had a sinking feeling that she'd never truly know what to do with that and so all she could do was put what she'd been through to good use.

She was an assassin; it was what she was good at and she got paid good money between her contracts and SHIELD but Natasha put a lot of it into philanthropic endeavors - anonymously, of course - and into supporting her elderly neighbor because for whatever strange reason, the old woman insisted on looking after Liho while she was away and whenever she came back she had food waiting for her which was nice. It meant she didn't have to live her life on takeout food all of the time.

Not that she couldn't cook for herself. She just didn't have the time. She preferred to keep herself as busy as possible because it was the times that she stopped that she truly felt like she was close to losing herself. Everyone knows how tough you are. Of course his words stuck with her; he had more influence over her than he gave himself credit for and maybe that was her problem. She didn't like the fact that Clint made her acknowledge her own weaknesses.

But that wasn't on him, that was on her. Assessing his injuries, Natasha released a soft sigh as she shook her head. "I can't turn my back on your for two minutes without you almost getting your dumb ass killed, can I Barton?" Natasha prodded playfully, a smile touching her features; the only time shew as ever truly relaxed was around those that knew her best in the world and there were only two people that could claim that: Bucky and Clint. Sure, Logan and a few others got close enough to call Natasha a friend but they weren't like the others.

"The chivalrous act isn't gonna wash with me, buster." she let out a small laugh. "I think I can handle the couch for a couple days. I can always go home if it's easier. Pretty sure there'll be a mountain of baked goods waiting for me, anyway." She hated how dismissive she sounded; wrinkling her nose, Natasha offered him an apologetic look. She'd come in here and woke him up, he was hurt, she was hurt... He was pretty much the one person she trusted above all else in the world.

He didn't deserve to be blown off like that. "I'm glad you're home. I don't know if they told you that I came by the hospital but..."

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 25 2017, 02:24 PM
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”Hey, no new injuries since you saw me last,” he protested before rubbing the back of his neck and looking a little sheepish. “Okay, no new life threatening ones.” Come on, he'd had a building to repair, and who didn't hurt themselves doing construction? Clint honestly couldn't remember the last time he'd been without a bandage somewhere on his body.

He never used to be this bad. Injuries were part of the game when working with the Avengers, but he used to be pretty good at avoiding them. He could flip off buildings and fight hoards of enemies with barely a scratch, but it seemed those days were over. Maybe he was getting old, or maybe just tired. He wasn't as careful as he used to be, yet also not as confident. It's not like he wanted to die – been there, done that, it hadn't stuck – but some days he couldn't help but wonder how many people would really miss him anymore. The Avengers had split and reconciled and changed ranks so many times that it wasn't like it used to be. There was a time they had been more like a family than a team, but those days were gone too.

Pushing those thoughts away, he focused on Natasha, already preparing to protest when she started talking about going home. “Nah, it's not easier. It's no problem, really. I've been mostly staying down here with Lucky anyways while he healed up, didn't want him to hurt himself on the stairs,” he pressed on. Lucky's ears perked up at his name, and he crawled closer to Clint so his owner could pet him. “It's all yours, but if you don't want it it's fine. But you should still stay.”

Scratching Lucky behind the ears. “Kate mentioned you had stopped in. I musta been asleep,” he said, curious that she'd bring it up. He wasn't really surprised that she'd popped in once to check on him, just surprised she'd mention it, though speaking of hospitals and injuries... a break in the cloudy night allowed for a bit of moonlight to shine in the window and he finally got a good look at her face. He sucked in a breath. “Talk about me getting injured... you okay?” He leaned forward, concerned, reaching out to gently touch her cheek.

Notes: my heart can't take it // Tag: Stitch
ytn
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Athena
 Posted: Jan 25 2017, 03:28 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
Time Zone GMT
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Pronouns She, Her
Weird, shy
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& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

She had been so convinced that it was all real and maybe that was the worst part of it all; she'd been led to believe she was a sleeper agent undercover with these people to get information out of them and nothing more; the end game would always be the same: They'd die because they'd outlive their uses and once they'd gotten what they needed from them she'd likely be charged with dispatching the loose ends. That was usually how it worked.

Leo had done a number on her, that was true. He'd made her second guess everything including herself; she had memories fighting inside of her that contradicted and battled and it felt like the war in her brain was honestly going to make her head explode; in truth she'd welcome it if it would. At least she'd get some peace from the splitting headache that way; she didn't ever want to go through that again.

When she'd defected she'd made a promise to herself that no one would ever get in her head like that again and now she was left with the remnants of a promise she couldn't even keep to herself so how the hell was she supposed to believe that she could protect anyone else? She'd nearly got Matt killed, Clint, Logan, Steve, Bucky... They'd all come for her and anything could have happened to them and she knew that she'd never be able to live with herself.

They shouldn't have come for her, none of them. They should have just... Just what, Nat? What should they have done? Oh, she'd have told them to put a bullet in her brain if she couldn't be brought back from it without any hesitation at all because if she had a choice she'd never be a risk to those that she loved. They had already put so much trust in her when she couldn't even trust herself, she wouldn't stand there with a loaded gun knowing she could kill them and she had no control.

Mind control was such a funny thing because it didn't erase you; it locked you away in a box and made you watch everything that your body did without your control and she'd come around with yet more blood on her hands. None of those people had deserved to die. None of those people had deserved to meet an end at the hands of an extremely proficient, dangerous assassin but then that person was supposed to be gone; Natalia Romanova was not supposed to ever be who she was again.

Needless to say, Natasha lacked confidence right now that she had any control whatsoever over herself. She scoffed softly at Clint though as he spoke, Rolling her eyes playfully as she grinned. "So just because I haven't come over to find you've nailed your hand to a wall I'm supposed to be cool with you breaking yourself? C'mon, Barton. You're too pretty to break." her grin developed into a playful smirk as she fell back into what seemed to be something familiar with her: Her to and fro with her best friend.

Oh, there was so much more. There was always so much there but for now, they both needed a goddamn friend. Her eyes fell to the dog as Clint spoke about his injuries and Natasha reached down a hand to trace it across his ears, scratching behind them as she gave the animal a gentle pat on the head. "Oh, he's a tough one, aren't you boy? You get it from this big lug." Natasha's eyes moved back to Clint. She could understand his concerns though; she didn't believe in hurting animals and honestly that kind of pissed her off but..

"I'd like that." she replied gently. "Thank you." it'd be good not to have to be alone all of the time. She was still trying to tie her brain back together and fill in the blanks in her memories and it was incredibly frustrating for her; she'd rather not have to deal with everything alone but Natasha was not the kind of person that really knew how to ask for help. She was notoriously independent; Maria theorized it'd be that that killed her someday but today was not going to be that day so she was okay with it.

"You were in and out a lot; I just needed to make sure you were okay." most of the time she tended to stick around when no one else was, at least that way she could talk and she wouldn't have to deal with the questions other people would ask her; he was sleeping, he couldn't ask questions. Her gaze fell to her lap as he spoke though, asking her how she was as she fought back retreat as he touched her cheek. She knew Clint. He was safe. He wasn't going to hurt her. "I'm good." Lies, but she'd always swear she was when she was asked.

They weren't allowed to admit weakness, after all.

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 25 2017, 05:31 PM
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“I didn't break anything,” he protested. At least he didn't break any part of himself. There had been a window and a banister that hadn't made out so well. Still, he couldn't help but grin at her ribbing, especially the 'pretty' bit. “Pretty? Pfft. I prefer ruggedly handsome.” She had found him handsome once upon a time at least, and he liked to think he'd been charming in some ways. And her... she was still the most beautiful woman he'd ever seen.

Clint had been accepting more of a fight when he pushed the rooming issue, but she actually accepted the offer fairly easily. She really must have needed to get away, which only made him worry more. Something had happened to her, something big, and even if she looked okay and sounded fine, he knew there was something under the surface. Sure, he could have asked, but he knew Natasha. He was better off waiting, offering her solace and companionship, and hoping she felt safe and comfortable enough after some time to tell him herself.

“No problem. What are friends for, right?” he replied.

Friends, that's what they were, so why wouldn't she come visit him at the hospital? Why wouldn't she check in and make sure he was okay, maybe even multiple times? Because Natasha didn't just go to hospitals, she didn't just check in. She asked others that had checked in maybe, or hacked medical records. But then they had never just been friends. Their relationship was deeper than that, they had been through so much together. He shouldn't be surprised she had been so concerned about him, but he was definitely touched.

He didn't really think about it when he touched her, didn't even think that she might pull away. Clint was a tactile person, he hugged people, threw his arm around their shoulders; he was just an all around friendly guy, so a simple touch, especially one to assess injury, just seemed natural to him. “Yeah? he said, clearly not believing her, “'cause you don't look so good.” He examined the bruises, though careful not to touch. “When did this happen?” She healed a little faster than most due to her enhancements, so he could only imagine what it all looked like fresh. Hopefully they were still relatively so.

Notes: my heart can't take it // Tag: Stitch
ytn

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Athena
 Posted: Jan 25 2017, 08:00 PM
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❝Broken wings, run away; kill the lights, set the stage dammit I
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& you arethe only one, the only one that sees me

Was she here for his sake or her own? If asked, she'd probably say that it was for him. She was worried about him and he was her best friend and therefore she wanted to make sure he was okay but that was complete and utter crap. She was there because in truth she didn't know where else to go. She was still trying to put her mind back together but it felt to her like some of the pieces were either blank altogether or just missing.

She hated it. It made absolutely no sense to her because she could feel the absences there but she couldn't fill in the blanks. She never wanted anyone messing with her head again and everyone that knew her knew that. That was probably the worst case scenario Natasha could imagine, well actually killing someone she loved would have been a whole hell of a lot worse but the checkerboard memory wasn't exactly a bunch of fun either.

Things just seemed to make a whole hell of a lot more sense around Clint; she hadn't told him that of course but he'd always had this way of calming her down and making her feel grounded. He'd seen both sides to her, He'd known Natalia and he'd known Natasha. He'd seen both sides to the coin, the killer and the hero and he was still there even though he probably shouldn't be. He'd already been through too much; he didn't need to inherit her enemies, too, so she probably should have kept the distance.

He knew what he was signing on for though; she'd never ever tried to be anything other than what she was when she wasn't working anyway. When she'd defected, she'd been raw and real and honest with him and that was more than most could claim. They knew what she wanted them to know about her; she knew that even most of her SHIELD files were redacted. Maria saw to that; she knew just how dangerous it was if that information was ever leaked. Natalia was supposed to be dead; she had to stay that way.

At least to the authorities that wanted her in jail, anyway. The underground was another matter entirely but she put them in their place all on her own; she didn't need a SHIELD team to do that. She worked tying up the loose ends of her shaded past herself because it was her mess to clean up; she wanted to make sure that those people knew that she was no longer their weapon. She was her own person now and they were going to pay for what they'd done and what they'd made her do. It wasn't exactly the safest thing in the world but she felt like she had to do it.

All of that red... All of that blood on her hands that she knew she had to live with; sometimes she was convinced that if she stared at them for long enough she could actually see it. Natasha shook her head; she needed to clear her mind from thoughts like that because right now they'd serve her ill and she had more than enough problems. He offered her clarity and she needed that more than anything right now. "Hmmm..." Nat mused playfully, tilting her head to the side as she studied his features. "Oh, you can be devilishly handsome from time to time."

He looked like he could use it and for once, she was being honest. She'd never not-found Clint attractive, that had never been a part of the problem. It was better that she hurt him sooner rather than later but she remembered the nights that they'd talk about a future and that felt like a big, gaping hole inside of her. He had moved on though and she was happy for him, truly. She knew that he was divorced now and he'd split up with his most recent girlfriend but he was making a life for himself and he had Kate to keep him out of trouble when she wasn't around.

"You're still my best friend too, you know." Natasha looked back up then, her eyes catching his as she tried to read what the hell was going on in that head of his. Sometimes, he was impossibly hard to read and she hated that; she was used to being able to dissect people in a matter of seconds but she knew that it was because she'd gotten close. Too close, actually. Her sight wasn't exactly clear when it came to Clint Barton. She noted though that he seemed to be trying to do the same to her which provoked a soft curious look. He was clearly trying to find out where the hell she'd gotten beat up but...

In truth, one of the many perks of her enhancements were that genuinely, it didn't hurt anymore. "Yesterday; the mission went bad. We had bad intel and I lost one of my team. A friend. Cover I'd been using was blown and all we could do was get out before it got worse." the regret was tangible in her voice. She hated it when things went wrong out in the field; bad intel wasn't something she stumbled across often but things weren't as reliable as they used to be, that was for sure. "I'll be okay."

You let me fall apart without letting go then you pick up the pieces and you make me whole. I didn't wanna escape from the bricks that I laid down but you are the only one, the only one that sees me, trusts me and believes me, you are the only one, the only one that knows me and in the dark you show me, yeah it's perfectly reckless, damn you leave me defenseless so break in and take everything I have til there is nothing left, until its just your voice in my head
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Spooky
 Posted: Jan 26 2017, 03:18 PM
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“I'll take it,” he said with a light chuckle. It wasn't that he found himself unattractive; Clint had been more than a little arrogant and overly confident in his youth. Cherry had certainly taken to him really quickly, though after that first fling she'd obviously used him, preying on his good heart and sense of chivalry to get what she wanted. Penny, not Cherry. He kept forgetting that.

Still, it was nice to hear once in a while, even if they were just joking around, especially the older and more beat up he got. It was the thing he never let himself think about when it came to Natasha: that he would continue to grow old while while she would stay looking young and beautiful forever.

Right now, though, it didn't matter, especially when she repeated the words back to him that he'd said that fateful day. The day she'd kissed him; the day he hadn't been able to stop thinking of her since. Did she think about it too? They'd never talked about it, just brushed it off as a stupid mistake and moved on. He'd had a girlfriend, and though Clint hadn't known it at the time Natasha had had a boyfriend too. As far as he'd known Bucky was dead, not hiding somewhere alive while letting them all believe it. Had she told Bucky? They'd probably had a laugh about it, how Clint had mistaken her gesture of gratitude for something else and pushed it too far.

It was thoughts like that that got him down sometimes, made him feel like he was redundant, that people tolerated him more than liked him anymore. He was often the butt of the jokes, and where had all his super friends been when his building had been under attack? They didn't need him; who needed the guy with a bow and arrow anymore?

But Natasha did. Maybe she didn't need his bow, but she needed him, and that meant so much more. When she was in trouble she came to him, and when she thought of her best friend she thought of him. In that moment he understood what had come over her when he'd said the same thing to her, as he had an almost overwhelming urge to kiss her too. Luckily he was able to restrain himself. “Thanks, Nat,” he said, before offering a self deprecating smile. “Don't worry, I won't kiss you again.” He laughed so she'd know he was joking, that they could joke about the moment because they were best friends above all else. He presumed she would just laugh and make no comment.

Although if he were to kiss her, it's not like either of them were currently attached... Stop that right now, Barton. It was only true because she didn't remember Bucky, he knew that. Clint had tried to help her remember, had filled her in when he could, but as far as he knew she'd never got those memories back. If she had she'd probably be sitting with Bucky right now, not Clint, right?

Without much pressing she told him what had happened to her, a story about a mission gone wrong and the loss of a friend. He knew how hard that hit her, even if she tried to hide it. They had both lost many people in their lives, but it never got any easier. “I'm sorry,” he said sympathetically, sliding his hand down to rest on her shoulder instead. “You can stay as long as you want. Kate'll probably be in and out, but she won't tell anyone.”

Notes: I gotta stop writing giant tags lol // Tag: Stitch
ytn

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