Forced Rest

January 04, 2017:

Peggy insists on returning to work after the auction incident. Steve insists she rests.


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: None.

Fade In…

After the incident at the auction, Peggy Carter refused to take a sick day or a leave of absence. Her previous incident with the Winter Soldier before took her out of commission and she was not about to let it happen again. Especially not now. Despite a brief moment of being electrocuted and strangled, she has insisted that she's fine. Determined, jaw set, the time displaced Agent of SHIELD refused to take no for an answer on the subject of returning to work. There's quite a bit of work still to do.

In fact, she's currently in her office, pouring over files. Some are paper, stacked up nearby, others are digital and she scrolls through them with knitted brows. An elbow rests on her desk, cheek resting on her hand. Her posture is slumped and not at all like a Proper British Lady. A mug of tea rests cold and forgotten near the edge somewhere.


A causal knock is given against the door, the person polite enough for confirmation before making his way in. With strong chiseled features and a warm smile, it's easy to see who it is. It's Captain America, dressed in causal attire, wearing rather lackluster attire, a long sleeved green-blue dress shirt, blue jeans and his brown leather jacket that drapes over it. It must be raining outside, because he seems to be slightly, beads of water still coming down off his outerwear.

"They told me you actually went through with coming in," Captain America says as he leans again the door frame, giving a smile of soft incredulity. "You really should be resting. Or at least working from home."


"Come in," Peggy tells the door a little brusquely. There have been a few who have come to tell her that she really should be at home and she has waved them all off in a distracted and annoyed manner. She has no time for pity or coddling. However, as she looks up to see Steve standing in the doorway, she straightens from her slouched position. There's a slight wince that she quickly hides with a smile.

"Oh! Steve. Hello. Yes, well. I simply abhor an empty to-do list. And most of these files are disallowed from leaving the building, so here we are." With a shrug, she adds, "I'm not one for bedrest." Folding her hands on the table to give herself a minute, she glances up at the casually leaning Captain America in her doorway.

After a pause, she simply rushes into the apology she's been formulating in her head for the past few days. "I'm sorry, Steve. I was reckless. You should have been able to go after Barnes without worrying about an injured team member. It's my fault we couldn't follow him."



The explanation is clearly heard, but from judging from his smirk, it's clear that he finds it more amusing than acceptable. It seems Rogers was waiting for Peggy's thoughts from the conflict. Oddly, the smile remains, though it fades just enough to be noticed, especially from the ultra-observant such as a top SHIELD agent. But his tone remains causal despite the change in topic. "Well, it's fine-" Cap stops his kneejerk reaction to forgive. "Actually, when you pack your stuff and let me take you home, it'll be water under the bridge."

Maybe SHIELD is starting to rub off on Steve if he's playing dirty pool like this. He makes it even worse when he goes on.

"I've taken myself off active duty for the night, so it won't be a problem." He pushes off the wall at that, merely waiting for Peggy to pack up and go in face the of his Cunning Cap Plan <TM>.


Steve's smirking. At her. Peggy raises an eyebrow at the expression on Steve's face, clearly a bit surprised at his response. The woman was clearly expecting a different reaction entirely. The head tilts just slightly as she studies him. The smile fading is certainly caught. She wonders exactly what it is that means when his plan is sprung.

There's actually a bit of a quick huff of surprised laughter at the tactic. That's the last thing she was expecting him to do. The woman sets the file she was sifting through onto the desk in front of her, but she doesn't yet stand up. "Steve, really. I'm alright. I've been through much worse." There is a warring faction in her head. On one hand, she owes Steve for her part in making it so that they were unable to detain Bucky. On the other, she doesn't want to give in to the idea that she may be too injured to continue working.

Instead, she looks to the clock and then back toward the Captain. "I have one or two more files I'd like to scan through. It is getting a bit late. If you'd like, you can escort me home after that? It shouldn't be more than half an hour."


"You've got fifteen."

With surprising firmness, Cap makes his way outside, clearing his throat as he wonders if being like this will help or only cause the woman to dig in her heels harder. Either way, the door is still left open; Agent Carter can see him move to the right of the door. Then, she will see the corner of his shoe and the edge of his left elbow. It would appear he's standing at ease, where he will remain… For fifteen minutes. It seems he is taking this rather seriously, but despite the unconventional tactics, his concern is not at all surprising. While he would push for the best of those working under or with him, Rogers definitely was a softie and did all he could to make sure people were happy and healthy if at all possible.


The ultimatum is given with a bit of a surprised look. To the other Agents of SHIELD and of the SSR, this might have been something that made Peggy all the more stubborn. However, she has little to prove to Steve and the need to unequivocally show that she is an equal member of the team does not have the same siren call here as it does with the general population. The drive to work her way through illness hasn't changed, but she also trusts Steve. And there's a voice in the back of her head that sounds just like Jarvis telling her that she has to allow others to help her. Captain Rogers relied on her at times and she must allow herself to rely on others. This time, it just so happens that person is Captain Rogers himself.

It's a little hard to concentrate with Steve standing guard outside her doorway at parade rest. There's a bit of a smirk as she looks up every few minutes to check if he is still there and - of course - he is. Finally, with a shake of her head, she shuts the folders, files them away and then stuffs a few into a bag to take home. "You know, this office is not Buckingham Palace. I have a few chairs." There's a smile as she pushes herself up, again with a wince. Her joints are still a little stiff and she picks up the bag with what files she can take out of the office.


A smile and a shrug is given once Peggy makes her way out. "I know," he states, content that his plan actually worked. The wince gets an arched brow, but while he pushed enough to get to leave early, he lets her move about without any aid. Pushing for her to use leave to recover is one thing, making her seem weak by helping her leave or carry her stuff through the SHIELD HQ is another.

For now, Cap doesn't talk of Bucky. Instead he speaks of the man that Peggy called out by name. "So, who /was/ that guy that used magic on you?" His eyes are forward as he pushes the button for the elevator. "I'm trying to remember if I've seen him before. Whoever he is, I presume he's the one you're trying to find now."


There's no susceptible change in her posture, but for a moment, Peggy holds her bag a bit tighter, perhaps expecting Steve to insist on carrying it. That was something she was not willing to bend on and as she passes the door and then Steve without him offering to take her bag, she puts it over her shoulder with a slightly more relaxed posture. Her gait is slower than usual, but not snail-like.

Taking the lead on the Bucky question, Peggy doesn't bring him up again. She has attempted to make her own apology and will allow him time to process. Or, at least, some time. The middle of the hallways in SHIELD is not exactly the best place for that conversation anyway.

"Am I that obvious?" Peggy gives Steve a sideways grin. "Damn, after all these years I thought I still had some mystery. But, yes, I recognized him. Erik Jan Hanussen. He was said to be Hitler's 'magician', but he supposedly died before the War started." There's a lot of that going on. "I've been attempting to find out more, if SHIELD perhaps had any records of a man matching his description."


The First Avenger listens closely as Agent Carter explains the information on this horrible blast from the past, getting a little more serious as Peggy goes into it. "That's just ducky," he replies as the elevator finally opens. "Well, if he's come back, I'm sure he has some horrid plan. When they go after the magical items like that, they tend to do that."

Offering theory and limited thoughts on the situation itself, Cap shrugs. "When you or someone else finds him though, I'll do what I can to make him wish he stayed down." After that final thought, the blond warrior is content to let the magic of elevator music linger as he gives a tap with his foot in time with the music. Well, mostly in time.


"Yes, I know," Peggy sighs. Nazis. Again. Who would have thought they would find themselves fighting literal Nazis again? "Yes. It seems clear he was after the book that the woman who came in with Bruce Wayne used to hold open the portal. Do we know what happened to that book after everything?" That would be a good place to start the investigation and work backwards. "The auction listing had it as the Liber Consecratus." If that might mean anything to him.

Steve's reaction to what he'll do to the man should they find the man is met with a grin. She waits out the elevator music and Captain America's arrhythmic foot tapping. "We'll find something out. Perhaps we should talk to Bruce Wayne to find out more of his plus one. She had the book last, it would seem."


"Seriously" is all Cap has to say when it comes to Nazis. While it's a topic he knows of, it's one of the few things from his past he didn't want to have to revisit. As Peggy asks for more information, he rubs the back of his neck. "The Liver Consecratus?" he begins, getting the name wrong. Latin isn't his thing clearly. "I think the Nazi fled with it. I admit I was mostly focused on making sure you were safe and no one died to worry about the book," the Man with the Star Spangled Plan admits. "Sorry."

Thankfully, Rogers does have some information. "I think the woman, she was Zatanna. Or she looked a lot like her… Been getting a lot of people telling me a lot of things recently."


Peggy gives a soft, humorless laugh at his reaction to more Nazis. She understands the sentiment quite a bit. Then, she quickly - without thinking - corrects him. "Liber Consecratus. The Consecrated Book." There's a bit of an embarrassed look downward as he mentions the reason why he was not tracking its whereabouts. Of course. "No apologies needed," she quickly amends. "This is merely intelligence gathering." One of her specialities. There are other things that also slipped through the cracks which they are not discussing yet.

However, the subject is brought up only because she has to respond to his findings. She attempts to skirt it, though. "The woman who came to talk to you?" She leaves the subject about what they talked about silent for now. That makes her think for a moment. "Interesting. Perhaps this is all linked somehow." She gives Steve a side glance as the elevator doors finally ping open. "Perhaps you should take it as a compliment. It may be they think you a trustworthy person to speak with."


As the doors open, Captain America moves forward with eyes straight ahead. "It's less I'm trustworthy and more they wanted to know why Bucky knew my name." If Steve left an impression on them, they didn't share it with him or he doesn't feel it's worth discussing. Both are distinct possibilities. Now he moves toward a certain level of the garage, clearly intending to move toward his cycle. "Apparently, he's had a lot of interactions with people where his 'old self' resurfaced. The fact that he saved Doctor Foster is proof that there is part of him in there. I doubt she's Hydra or on their radar. But right now, Bucky's the connection though I'm not sure who he works for or why he's linked with this book." He moves toward the sliding glass doors of the garage, using his key card to open it. Even though they are sliding, he lets Peggy go first before following after.

"Doesn't seem like a good name to me, 'The Consecrated Book'. Nothing consecrated about it," Steve mentions almost to himself, likely referring more to the holy definition than anything else. It's the one he's heard more often than not, after all.


Well, there is also that. Peggy steps through the elevator doors with Steve. "Not with everyone," she says quietly with a frown as she keeps moving forward. Her own interaction with Bucky involved absolutely no recognition. Not of Steve, not of her, not of his former life or their own shared past. The Soldier she met steadfastly had no memory of her or Steve. It took a bullet to his side to escape with her life. "We know little of Doctor Foster. We know that she works with SHIELD and has a tie to him. As far as we know, they may be working together. They were clearly at the event together."

As Steve allows her through the doors first, she steps through them and continues forward. It's not that she was expecting the courtesy, but she accepts it without comment. "Without the history of the book, it's hard to determine why it was called such. "Perhaps it was once a holy book. What we know is that it is powerful." Powerful enough to bring Hanussen, the Winter Soldier and various other factors to an auction. Powerful enough to re-open a portal to another world. It's something to try and track down and catalogue.



There is an awkward moment after Cap puts together why Peggy said that, not realizing her fight with the Winter Soldier was an outlier on the Bucky Bellcurve. While the talk of the book's origins only gets a shrug (Steve isn't big on occult history clearly), the talk of Jane being a traitor causes the young blond to sour. He doesn't like thinking people should betray, could betray, or would betrayal. But they happen. Even to him. "Well, let's not judge guilty until proven innocent here. Keep an eye on her, sure, but I think it's more for the fact she doesn't know what she's dealing with. She smart, proud, and inexperienced. It's a dangerous combination for stuff like this."

When Steve and Peggy comes to the bike, it's little surprise what it is: a Harley-Davidson WLA 1942. It lacks the SSR upgrades considering it's Cap's 'civilian' ride, but perhaps planning on taking an injured Peg with him, he has gotten the side car installed. A helmet rests in the seat and strapped to motorcycle bag closest to the sidecar is a wrapped up item that is clearly his shield from the shape. He offers Peggy the helmet before putting one on of his own. As he gets on, he nods to a random agent making their way out of the garage, waiting for the safety gear to be put on before turning on the bike.


Despite Steve's words, Peggy remains suspicious of Jane. Perhaps it is due to the circumstances of their meeting. Perhaps it is because it seems that the woman was manipulating her friendship with Steve. Either way, the scientist is someone to be watched and judged in her mind. "I'm not exactly judging," Peggy tells him, almost defensively. "But, she clearly knows more than she is saying. I believe she directly manipulated me with regards to our past history in order to recuse herself from further questioning." There's a sigh as she attempts to be more charitable. "She did seem guilty about what was done. Perhaps she is merely tangled in something beyond her. However, she is certainly acting in a suspicious manner."

As they approach the bike, Peggy looks at it for a moment, a sense of nostalgia rising up. She should have known his ride would be a motorcycle. Though she wants to be indignant of the thought that she would ride in a sidecar rather than on the motorcycle herself, the aching in her muscles leaves her willing to concede the sidecar without a fight. Taking the helmet, she buckles it under her chin and slowly makes her way into the sidecar. Swinging her leg over he top of it is a dicey gesture and she has to gingerly lower herself into the seat in order to make it. She feels like the old woman she is supposed to be and it frustrates her. "I feel like such a pansy."


"I'll check in on her tonight or tomorrow, first thing. Nothing to feel pansy about, you DID get almost killed by a Nazi Warlock. Or mage. Or whatever they are calling them these days."

It's something that he was likely going to check on Jane anyway, but hey, if making it seem like it was Peggy's insistence that encouraged him to do so, maybe it will make it seem like she's doing more. He would offer to take her right now, but well, she just apologized for costing him a chance to pursue Bucky, a topic he hasn't broached yet, but well, still a chance for someone to overhear a private conversation.

"Past history." Oblivious pause. "Our history? I guess when people talk about World War II I get a little distracted myself." And with that, Steve makes his way outside and onto the streets of New York. Considering his experienced driving in a war zone, he finds that NYC traffic wasn't as horrible and deadly as he had heard.

Close though.


There's a moment where she debates pushing herself into that meeting. While Peggy respects Steve, she knows he's far more willing to trust people than to distrust them. It's an admirable trait, but one that she feels is best tempered with someone who is always looking for ulterior motives. "I'd appreciate that," she tells him. Even if he was planning on going on his own time, he's won some points in Peggy's book on that front.

"I was nowhere near killed," she tells him as she settles into the sidecar. "It was trying and painful, but it takes more than a little lightning magic to take me down." It's hard to tell whether this is her bravado or her general view on what happened to her at the auction.

His question is met with a nod. "Yes, our shared history. She said that I should speak with you to catch up. That she read that we were close and she thought you missed me." Then, Steve turns on the motorcycle and makes his way into the city. It's hard to talk while traveling in NYC in a vehicle without a roof, so she leans back, arms around her bag.


As Peggy seems to table the conversation, Rogers follows her lead. After all, it's difficult to talk on a cycle, even more so when in NYC. Combine on that with the headache that comes from getting beat up? The man frowns slightly as he realizes he should have gotten a car, but too late now. As he drives he focuses on the road, giving the place a look of caution. It's always a little hard for Steve to drive around this town. It's like being a tourist in a place he calls home. He knows so much of it, but the cars, the people, the culture, the routes… So foreign.

Finally, Steve pulls up to the location in question, moving to help Peggy out of the sidecar as he remembers her struggle getting in. He picks up the conversation right where it was left off. "Catch up? Something I should know about?" he asks with confusion, moving to put his helmet down only after Peggy has taken off hers. He will follow after, but only after he gets the disc shaped object, clearly not comfortable leaving it unattended in a place that isn't max security.


As Steve pulls up to her building, Peggy takes a breath. The ride in Steve's sidecar was an interesting one due to both perspective and nostalgia. She's grown used to the changed landscape over the months of being here, but there is a part of her that still sees storefronts that no longer exist, buildings that block views she thought would always be there.

Once at their destination, she looks at Steve's hand for a moment before she accepts it as help to lift herself out of the sidecar. As soon as her feet are on the ground, she picks up her bag and takes a moment to re-center herself and take off her helmet. "That's what I thought. I thought you had some significant information she had relayed to you, which is why she was directing me toward.a discussion. But, now I think it was merely deflection." She eyes the disc shaped object but, then leads Steve toward her building, moving past the doorman and into the elevator up to the top floor.

It's a quick elevator and Peggy swiftly digs the keys out of her bag and opens up her apartment to usher Steve inside.



The word is offered again much like before in response to the claim of deflection, the hand moving to rub his chest slightly. Maybe he pulled his left breast during that fight, who knows. Either way, he looks around as if wondering if it's okay for men to enter in this building, but seeing as it isn't the 'Women's Housing' of yesteryear, he makes his way into the building and to the top floor. "Seems nice," he points out as he looks around with a glance, merely calmly taking things in for the time being.


Steve's saying a less than self-reflective 'oh' at quite a few things she's said. Peggy opens the door for Steve this time gesturing him in. Her flat is rather nice, decorated in a vintage style with a sunken in living room and a kitchen beyond that, colors neutral and warm browns and reds.

"Thank you," she tells him with a smile and a shrug. Shutting the door softly behind them with a click, she moves toward the kitchen. "Glass of water?" she knows better than to offer him alcohol, after all. "It's a nice place to call home." As she moves to the kitchen to get glasses, there's a long pause of silence. It doesn't last forever, though, as Peggy finally brings up something that has been left lingering for awhile. She's not the type to let it let lie for too long.

"Should we talk about the auction?" Despite her guilt, she is not about to take herself off this case. "I didn't realize I would get such a violent reaction from Hanussen. I thought to merely distract him to give the woman with the book more time. Next time, I'll be sure to keep more covert."


"Water is fine. Milk's great too."

Steve tends to be a fan of protein, likely due to the super muscle he has. As he walks in, his calm gaze takes in the room, taking in the little details that let him know that it truly is the person he left behind. He looks to any pictures that remind him of the SSR, staring into it as he speaks. "There is nothing to apologize for. You tried to do what you felt was right and we had no idea how dangerous the man was. What he was capable of."

A half beat goes on before Cap decides to be a little wordy, perhaps considering his words the entire motorcycle ride in. "I know it seems like it was just protecting you that I didn't go after Bucky." There is another short pause as he looks over the picture, as if trying to see if a minute detail in it held the answers everyone wanted in this whole mess with Bucky and evil Nazis. "And I'd be lying to say that making sure you were okay didn't play into that." His eyes are gentle when he looks back to Peggy, the same eyes that he had during those countless interviews for the SSR to see if Rogers was truly the man for Operation: Rebirth. She knows how he talked about his parents, their deaths, and caring for people. The same look of pain and tenderness then is given now.

"But it's more than that," Cap admits, taking a deep breath to let Peggy know he's about to talk a lot.

"I've spent a sleepless night or thinking and praying about how to save Bucky. How I /didn't/ want to help Bucky." It's rare that Captain America talks about his faith. It's something he keeps close to the chest, understanding that it is a far different world with regards to religion than it once was. What was common conversation is now a much more taboo topic. Still, it colors who he is and perhaps one of the many reasons he is able to remain as innocent and righteous as he is.

But as swift as it came in, talk of God disappears as Captain America goes into other heart confessions. "When you have power, an important thing is to learn when you /shouldn't use it, even if the intention is right."

Cap moves toward Peggy at this point, perhaps to get closer, perhaps to take the glass of milk. "I know the SHIELD way of taking down targets of interest. Hunting him down like a dog, dragging him here kicking and screaming, stripping him down until they get what need. It's what you do when the world's at stake, not when you're saving a friend. I don't pretend to know what horrors Barnes has had to go through-" With that, he looks at Peggy, that 'unmovable moral conviction' set in his eyes. "I promised myself I wouldn't do that. If Bucky is brought back from whatever it was, it won't be because he was broken, tortured, or manipulated into doing so; it would be because he wanted to be the man he once was, the man he could be."

After all that, Steve moves toward the closest window to stare outside and to a lesser degreee, his own reflection. "But I've been wrong before."


Of course Peggy has milk. Moving into the kitchen, she pours a glass of it. As he looks around the room, Steve will certainly see the touches of Peggy's influence. There are a few framed pictures from the war around the room. There is a candid of the Howling Commandos, including Peggy. There is an outtake from the original SHIELD portrait photos that include Jarvis, Ana, Howard, Sousa and Peggy with a glass of champagne and all at various stages of laughing. There is a journalist photograph of Steve, Barnes and Dugan all around a map with Steve's compass barely visible. The few prints of artwork are impressionistic as well as modern.

As Steve moves closer, she holds out the glass of milk. "No, I didn't think it was me. I thought it was more about not leaving a man behind."

As he keeps talking, though, Peggy remains quiet. His eyes, his tone, she knows it all. The thought that he thought about not helping Bucky is a surprise to Peggy. However, she understands his reticence of the modern SHIELD. However, it is still a bit of a sting to realize that the organization she started can no longer be trusted.

The woman slowly follows Steve as he moves toward the window. "I'm not sure if we can retain Bucky without some form of ability to hold him until we can prove he can trust us. He's—-he is a man who is willing to kill to escape."


For Cap, it's clear that he still respects and trusts SHIELD. He might not agree with everything they do, but Rogers understands his moral rigidity is rather uncommon. He drinks the milk, downing half of it rather quickly once he has the chance and the pause in conversation. "That's the key. It's often risky doing the right thing, but we'll get it done," Captain America replies. His tone makes it one thing clear: He's already got a plan in mind, and he's pretty darn sure Peggy won't approve. But at least she understands his thoughts on the matter.

With that, Rogers turns toward Peggy, now close to her as they often get when the speak of such personal matters. "Speaking of SHIELD and the like, I talked to Agent Lewis mentioned something about you, me, and her doing a threesome. I figured I'd check with you what that was before confirming. That's like a card game like spades, right?"

Peggy has quite a strict moral code, however, her own is only somewhat less rigid than Steve's. She has a need for truth and a determination to find it out. "Steve," her tone is cautious and also wary. She knows from that that he has a plan, one that he is not telling her. "What do you have in mind?" She sighs and moves up to stand next to him beside the window. They are not touching, her arms cross over her chest as she looks out to the same view over Manhattan.

The serious tone of her voice is completely and utterly dispelled at the question. "Wh—you suggested a what?" Blinking, she turns slightly toward Steve. "That was your idea? It's not a card game, no. That is an implication to go to bed sexually with two other people. I know Agent Lewis, I would think she is teasing."


"Just talk."

That is Steve's great plan for helping Bucky? It is, but it could be there is more he's not sharing or just the pure idealistic nature of Captain America shining through.

With his first explanation given, Rogers starts to answer concerns toward the second. "Well, it was her idea," he states swiftly to defend himself before any possible rage rises. "I had… no idea what it was or she was teasing. Thought that sort of thing just European," he offers ignorantly. He gives a clearly nervous laugh on that before he finishes the milk. "Well, in any case, unless you have something else you need to talk about, should likely let you be. I did take you here so you could get some rest after all."


There is a look toward Steve. Talking is not something she is against. However, this man has killed many people. If this is actually Bucky, he tried to kill her. She's not willing to risk Steve on a moral principle. "Talk." The word is met with a slight worry and disbelief. "Steve, I do know he doesn't have the same friendship with me, but I did try talking to him and his response was an attempt to kill me." She's not exactly dissuading him from his mission. She knows what Steve will go through to save Bucky - she's seen it first hand.

"If anyone can get through to him, I know it will be you. But, you can't rely on it. It may not actually be Bucky. He may not remember you and is using this to draw you out to harm you."

Peggy gives a short laugh. "If that is something you are interested in, Steve…" she drifts off, unable to actually tease him in this manner. Peggy reaches out a hand for the glass. "I understand. I know Agent Lewis and her sense of humor. I'm not about to take it personally."


As Carter discusses the fact that Winter Soldier might be attempting to kill him and this was all a plan, Rogers shakes his head. "If he wanted to harm me, I have a feeling we would have already had that fight. While I don't like saying it, there are definitely ways to stack the deck so he'd have the upper hand. Hostages then drawing me out, going after other people to get to me… He hasn't done any of that. I don't pretend to know it will work, but as I said, I need to try things my way." A short pause is given as he considers the possible outcomes, understanding that some of them might not be good. "No matter what," he concludes.

The talk of Lewis' jest is given a simple smirk and an arched brow, clearly understanding that the woman before him is likely joking. "Fair enough" is his simple response. Swiftly, as if not wishing to forget it while he has the chance, Rogers compliments the area with a "Really like the place, it's nice" while further studying the area.


"Perhaps. Perhaps it's not a plan. It may be that he is operating at random. However, he had a reason for being at that auction and seemingly had a strategy. If he had that, there may be a reason as to why he is doing this." Peggy sighs and keeps her eyes on Steve. There's a seriousness to her countenance. "I'm not dissuading you; I know that to be useless. But, let me help you. Don't go alone."

As she moves from the window, she pauses. His question as to if she has something else to talk about is finally answered, though it only has to deal with what they were speaking of before. "About that night…" Both the auction and his night of thought and prayer, "I do hope it possible to find and talk to Barnes in a manner that will allow him to come in without further violence. I think you might not have wanted to go after him then because you know that it will ultimately come down to his choice. And you cannot force that."

Only after that does she follow Steve's glance around her apartment. It - strangely - has become both familiar and home. That's not a thing she thought would happen. "Thank you. It's grown on me in the past little while. I'm glad you like it. You're always welcome to visit when you're not escorting me to bed rest."


"Noted on all accounts."

Does that mean that Captain America will accept help when the time comes or merely that her advice is taken and won't be followed? Will he understand that ultimately it is not up to what Steve does, but a multitude of factors that might be out of his control? It's hard to tell, but perhaps even Rogers himself isn't sure how it will all go down. It's clear from the distraught look on his face at Peggy's words that he isn't merely dismissive. It's just a lot to take in and a lot that won't be decided until the situation where Bucky and Steve are in front of each other on a battlefield yet to be decided.

When the conversation shifts to something a little lighter, Rogers eases faintly, doing his best to not let inner worries and concerns weigh down his time with Peggy. After all, this was supposed to be a time for her to rest and feel better, not be burdened in other ways. "Well, it's always hard to adjust to the change, but you get to it. As for coming by, that would be great. Sometime I could show you my place too. It's a lot smaller, but I like it."


The acknowledgement is met with a firm nod. Peggy's not about to force him to talk about it anymore. She's unsure whether any of her words landed or even if he will take any of her advice, but that is no longer he call. There is quite a bit to unpack on multiple different levels when dealing with the Bucky situation. For now, she's said her piece and will leave it at that.

The shift in tone mostly helps to alleviate the heavy atmosphere. It's hard to escape entirely. However, she moves to the couch: she was brought here to rest, after all. She sinks down onto it a little more gratefully than she was expecting, leaning back with a soft sigh of relief to be sitting on something cushioned. "That is certainly something I have heard. I used to think it impossible. However, bit by bit…" it starts to become almost normal. The offer to be shown his place is met with a smile and a nod. "I would like that sometime. There's nothing wrong with having a smaller flat. This place was not entirely my own choosing, but I've come to consider it a home."


A soft smile as Steve moves next to Peggy. "Well, if there was anyone that could adjust quickly to something as world changing as a new time, it would be you. In fact, other than the whole… away from everyone we know, I figured this would be a better time for you." A glance is given toward the window. "I mean, women seem to get a lot more respect here than in our time." A weaker grin is given as he looks back toward the woman. "It's not perfect, sure, but better."

A cough is given as the First Avenger settles into the couch, shifting slightly as best he can as if waiting. "So, you think wear that dress again? It was really beau-" Then the phone chimes. Cap opens his mouth and his cell phone just continues to chime. He looks at it and sighs. "It looks like I need to get going. Apparently they need a security escort for a prisoner who has some extra muscle."


"That is certainly one aspect I have enjoyed experiencing. I'm glad to see so many agents in SHIELD that would have had to fight for a place in the SSR. Though, I'm not sure I will ever get over people recognizing me who I am without rolling their eyes first." That was quite the experience back in the Old Days. If people knew of Agent Peggy Carter, they went in expecting her to be a pain in their ass. Now they see her and treat her with automatic respect. It's a strange experience. One she knows Steve has some experience in.

As Steve shifts, there's an expectant look at his question. Before he can finish the thought or she can answer, his phone interrupts them. Duty calls. "Of course. Thank you for ride home. It was nice to catch up." As she ushers him to the door, she adds with a smile, "As for the dress, were there to be a proper occasion, you just might see it again."

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