(If you are reading this on any PAY site this is a STOLEN WORK, the author has NOT Given Permission for it to be here. If you're paying to read it, you're being cheated too because you can read it on Archiveofourown for FREE.)
"Office hours are from three to five on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays," Henry Jones replied without looking up from the briefcase he was shuffling papers into. The class had been long and tiresome with the students sitting there expecting him to do all the work of thinking for them, and his funding had been cut, yet again. He didn't have any patience to spare today.
"I really need to speak to you, sir. Now. It's vitally important, Indiana."
Through the haze of academic boredom, 'Indiana' caught his attention. Most of his students were well aware that he conducted archaeological expeditions, and some of the young women apparently found this attractive enough to attempt to get personal by using his nickname, but this had an entirely different tone. He looked up for the first time at the man speaking to him. "You're not one of my students."
"No, sir, I'm not."
The man was tall, broad, muscular, and impossibly clean-cut. He had crisply combed blond hair, clear blue eyes, a noble brow, and a jawline like cut steel. Indiana felt scruffy just looking at him. Since his experiences with the Lost Ark six years ago he was wary around Aryan-appearing types, which made his tone sharper than he meant when he said, "So, I don't actually have to speak with you."
The man sighed. "Sir, I know what you're thinking. I've read your memoirs. I'm not a Nazi, far from it."
"No, you're just delusional. I haven't written any memoirs." Indiana snapped his briefcase shut and turned to leave. A worn leather book slammed against his chest, stopping him. It felt and smelled old. Instinctively he grabbed it to prevent it falling to the floor. It had a gummed paper label on it, peeling on the edges, brown and crisp. Handwritten in fading brown ink, in what looked like his own handwriting, it said, "Yes, he read your memoirs."
He opened the book, and leafed randomly through it. There were sketches and notes, all in his hand, including the Ark of the Covenant and his impressions of the aftermath of the Nazis' attempt to use it. "What? How? Who are you?"
"My name is Steve Rogers. I'm from the future. Sort of." Rogers took back the book. "We really need to talk, Professor Jones. In private."
"My office won't do?" Indiana really hated private meetings with strangers. So far, he hadn't yet been kidnapped or beaten up on campus which was more than he could say for most of the world.
"Not for this. I'm not carrying a weapon," Rogers said as if he knew what Indiana was thinking.
"I am," Indie replied, lying in his teeth.
Rogers smiled serenely at him.
"All right, I've seen things I can't explain," Indiana said the moment the front door of his house shut behind them. He turned to lock it. "That's the only reason I'm willing to listen to you, but your story better be good."
"It's not a story," Rogers said. He looked around. "Can we sit? This is going to take a while."
"Fine." Indiana led the way to his couch, and pulled up a chair for himself at a distance. "Talk fast, I have an early morning class and I need to prepare."
Rogers nodded and sat. "Stalin had Timur’s Tomb opened on June 20, 1942."
Indiana huffed. "Yeah, I think he was jealous of the Nazis' breakthroughs at Tanis and Iskenderun. He wanted to one-up them by having Mikhail Gerasimov reconstruct Timur's features from his skull. Not that I can see why anyone would want Timur's face in their statue garden."
"I did a little reading on him before... well, before..." Rogers said. "He wanted to make the Mongol Empire greater than Genghis Khan. 17 million people died. In North India he built a pyramid from human skulls. 70,000 human skulls. I'm told he just got tired of carting them around and thought he might as well use them for something."
"Yeah, Timur was a monster. What's that got to do with me?" Indiana waved his hand to get Rogers to hurry up.
"Do you know the inscriptions on his tomb?"
"Sure. The first one, written on the tombstone says, “When I Rise From the Dead, The World Shall Tremble”. And the second one inside the tomb reads, “Whosoever Disturbs My Tomb Will Unleash an Invader More Terrible than I’. They don't write poetry like that anymore."
"Two days after Gerasimov opened the tomb, the Nazis invaded Russia, without formally declaring war."
"Coincidence." Indiana rolled his eyes. "The Nazis like to invade and they don't care about formalities. You're not telling me you came here with a story about a curse, are you? What do you want me to do, ask Stalin to please put the skull back, and apologize? Will that make the Nazis dry up and go away?"
"It's not about the Nazis. It's about an Invader more terrible than Timur." Rogers turned his hand over, clenched and released his fist. A glowing yellow gem floated above his hand. "I've come back in time, using the power of this Infinity Stone, to prevent Thanos from destroying the Earth."
Indiana leaned forward and stared at the gem. "Good magic trick. Bad line. What the hell do you want? Cut the bull."
Rogers grabbed Indiana's hand. "I'll show you."
There was yellow, blazing, and everything. Everything. Everything went away. Indiana was nowhere, but he felt Rogers hold on him, and he could see. They were nothing, standing on nothing, surrounded by a sphere of translucent yellow. And below their feet, there was a shattered globe. He could make out the distorted outlines of once familiar continents. It was all shades of gray and black, as dead as the moon. He stared in horror. "Please. No."
The yellow blazed up again, and they were back in Indiana's house. He pulled away from Rogers, and went for the nearest bottle of booze. After several swigs direct from the bottle he waved it in Rogers' direction. "Want some?"
Rogers shook his head. "Can't get drunk." His eyes were dark with memories. "No matter how much I wish I could. Everyone's gone. We fought, we gave it everything we had, and... Thanos just laughed. He..." Rogers closed his eyes for a moment. "I had a team. I had... friends. Vision had the Time-stone. He used to find out why Thanos wanted us dead. Thanos was... is... trying to impress Death itself and when Timur's face was recreated... somehow... it called to him. Like to like, I suppose."
Indiana poured a glass of booze and shoved it at Rogers. "Maybe you can't get drunk, but you can try."
"Yeah." Rogers took the drink in one long gulp. "Tony... Tony figured it out. He got your memoirs and traced the time back to where it could be changed. He distracted Thanos, and Vision pulled the Time-stone out of his own head to give me. They sent me here. They died, sending me here." He looked up at Indiana. "You have to make sure the reconstruction of the face is wrong, and then you have to make sure the skull is put back in the tomb with all the full Islamic burial rites, everything needed to put Timur to rest."
"You're asking me to go to Russia and convince Stalin to change his mind?" Indiana drank some more. "There is a war in between, you know. And it's not as if Stalin has office hours."
Rogers nodded. "I'll come with you."
"Uh huh." Indiana sat down heavily.
"Maybe we only have to convince Gerasimov?"
"Sure. Piece of cake." Suddenly Indiana grinned. "What the hell. Why not? Anything's better than teaching introductory classes."
Rogers smiled at him and raised his glass in salute. "And maybe we can fight Nazis while we're at it. I never did get to punch Hitler."
"A man's got to have dreams," Indiana replied. "Here's to better days."