People like to say that time slows down when you think you're about to die.
As far as Clint's concerned, that's total bullshit. This isn't the first time he's looked down the barrel of a gun with nowhere to run, or watched through blood-tinged eyes as a man's hand swung back that final time, or strained against ropes cutting into his arms as he tried to hold his breath long enough to get free and swim back up. And none of those things has ever slowed time, not even for a second.
But this might just do it.
we are always someone else || bruce banner-centric, 3138 words, all ages;
When Bruce leaves, he tells Tony that he’ll come back, and he’s not even surprised to find that he means it. He’s leaving because he has to, because he has things left unfinished in a few corners of the world, things he needs to get and people he needs to see before he can return with a clear conscience.
There's a man sitting across the room from her, features lost in a haze of smoke and dim lights and the shadow over his eyes from the brim of his fedora, but he's been watching her since he walked through the door. She can feel the weight of his gaze on her bare shoulders, the way he tracks every movement she makes, every sip of her vodka, every tap of her foot to the music.
Tony’s just finishing the last few tweaks to the armor-removal system on the landing pad (it hadn’t actually sustained any damage, but it was a perfect opportunity to tweak some things) when he hears the elevator ding in the living room.
He comes in, wiping his hands ineffectually on a rag, just as the elevator doors slide open and Clint Barton steps out, bag in hand.
Clint comes to visit Tony in the aftermath of Loki's invasion.
part one of this isn't where my heart is but it's something close to home
Barton’s file included several notes about his penchant for improvisation, for ignoring orders which he thought were stupid, his inability to remain silent on comms, even during covert operations. He’d worked with nearly every handler and team leader in the agency, and he’d pissed off nearly every single one of them in some way, despite his almost astronomical clearance rate and his frankly insane proficiency with just about any weapon he could get his hands on.
It’d been inevitable that he and the lead handler would butt heads, but that didn’t make it any less irritating when Phil had gotten his orders stating that he was to tag along in a minimal capacity to monitor the situation and intervene or issue other orders as needed to oversee the completion of the mission.
part 3 of we owe ourselves to someone better
“You’ve got a hell of a gap in your security, Stark.”
“Actually,” Tony says, smirking slightly, “I think you’ll find it’s not so much a gap as a very precisely-shaped back door which requires a particular set of biometric readings and a very specific brain-activity pattern, and is only valid when attempting entry at one single window in the study.”
In which the Avengers get a late-night visit from an unexpected figure from Tony's past.
She's stopped at a corner, waiting for traffic to stop so she can cross the street. Their intel says she'll be continuing down this street, headed right for a convenient bottleneck, a narrow, winding stretch of the street where it passes between two high buildings, no windows or fire escapes or doorways in which she might find cover or escape, unless she lives up to her namesake and can actually climb sheer walls.
Traffics halts at the corner, and she continues on, drawing nearer and nearer towards the bullet Clint's been ordered to put through her skull.
follows there are demons dancing through your dreams
She looks up one day to see cold concrete walls and well-worn sparring mats instead of carefully-cleaned mirrors and the polished wood of the barre. For a moment her breath stutters in her chest, her heart pounding in her ears and the world tilts sideways, splinters sideways and crashes to the ground.
HERE at AO3 || original HERE
warning for hinted-at underage consentual sexual content
( The walls of the Red Room's training facility are the same dirty grey concrete everywhere she goesCollapse )