The future is strange, and getting used to it is hard for the both of them. They're on seperate timelines, different chronologies – Steve has been awake for about a year and a half, and Bucky has been slowly gaining back memories of the sixties, seventies, eighties (he always loudly denies being around in the nineties, but everyone and their mother knows he is lying).
/ / / / /
Bucky is sulking in Stark's kitchen, moving his fingers of his left arm every few seconds. They had gone to Tony to make adjustments on the mechanical arm, and some of them were good – the star on his shoulder is a shield now, matching Steve's – but it still brought up memories he'd rather forget. They had been invited to stay in Stark Towers for a few days for follow-up work, and Steve is watching him slurp at soup with a sour face. He wants to turn that frown upside down.
He scoots his chair over closer to him and braces his elbows on the table, chin on his hands. Bucky raises an eyebrow at him, and Steve grins at him.
“You know what we both missed when we were getting freezer burn?” he asks, and he can't hide his smile.
“Other than denim-on-denim and talking ponies?” Bucky rolls his eyes at him and takes another sip of his soup.
“Like, fifty Disney movies.”
Bucky spits his soup out, choking a little. “Shut the fuck up,” he says accusingly once he has wiped his mouth and Steve has stopped laughing. “There's no way.”
“I'm telling you, Buck, fifty Disney movies. They even kept making 'em after he died.”
They both share grins of childish glee, and claim Stark's movie room for themselves, with a queue set up with the four they've seen, and all those that came after.
Steve's favorites are Mulan and Tangled. Bucky likes Beauty and the Beast. Neither of them stop singing the songs, to the point that Clint has started throwing things and Natalia glares whenever one of them opens their mouth.
/ / / / /
They don't play music in elevators anymore, but they sometimes play them in stores, and usually it's music from hit parades or charts or whatever the word is now. For all that Bucky has always prided himself on looking like a gangster and dressing and acting as sharp as you can when you're a dock worker in Brooklyn, the future finds him liking pop songs, that he sings at any chance he can get, singing obnoxiously and grinding his hips.
Steve likes rock music, which surprises everyone but Bucky, who rolls his eyes and goes to change the radio station, only to be swatted away.
They're in a little mom 'n pop clothing store around the corner from their apartment, looking through racks of jeans – and it feels weird as anything for Steve to be reaching for large rather than small – and they can hear the owners' daughter talking about the playlist she made, which she broadcasts over the shop's speakers.
It starts an upbeat, pop-y tune, which has Bucky grinning and waggling his eyebrows from across the racks, and when the lyrics start up the two of them freeze to look at one another.
“And while you're here in my arms,” the girl sings, her voice electronically modified, “Let's make the most of the night like we're gonna die young”
And their eyes meet, and they are in Brooklyn in 2014 and they are twenty-five and twenty-four years old, and ninety-five and ninety-four, and their eyes meet and they both burst out laughing, clutching each others arms to stop from sinking to the ground.
/ / / / /
Steve is emphatically excited when they meet JARVIS for the first time, asking him an avalanche of questions. Bucky is skeptical and impressed, but tries his best to blow it off. When the two of them are in their guest room that has been lent to them, and Bucky has turned on “privacy mode”, Steve is still talking about it.
“The future has robots, Bucky,” he babbles, sitting on the edge of the bed and toeing off his shoes.
“Seems so, pal,” Bucky replies mildly.
“Robots!” Steve repeats, grinning. “It's like an Asimov short story. Actual robots that talk and think and do things. How are you not more excited about this? Robots!”
“I'm more interested in finding out if Stark's robot butler is gonna watch us while we fuck,” Bucky says, pushing Steve backwards with a smirk.
“Robots,” Steve says once more with a shit-eating grin on his face, with Bucky straddling him, and he has the audacity to laugh before Bucky drags him into a kiss.
/ / / / /
Finding out the Dodgers have moved to California comes as a personal blow to the two of them.
It even comes up in interviews, the press things that SI organizes every once in a while, for 'Pro-Avengers Public Image'. Hill is in charge of them, which means that they aren't that bad, but they are encouraged to stay polite in them.
Steve makes his best Captain America is disappointed in you, son face when the reporter asks, and Bucky just scowls and says, “I got a word for 'em, alright, but I don't think I'm allowed to say it on television.”
Banner suggests that they start rooting for the Yankees in revenge with a wry turn to his mouth, and everyone cracks up at the gasps of horror the two soldiers make.
“What the hell is wrong with you?” Bucky asks, mouth gaping, and Steve just shakes his head, looking sick to his stomach.
Thor, feeling left out in this talk about Midgardian sports, starts explaining the virtues of Asgardian oil wrestling, which, huh. Seems. Original.
“Sounds fun,” Steve remarks dryly, which gets a laugh out of the team and flabberghasted looks from the press. It trends on twitter.
/ / / / /
Clint suggests they try dropping Mentos into Diet Coke.
The fallout is glorious, and when the laughter and screaming has died down, they start plotting their revenge, and the ensuing prank war is glorious and of epic proportions.
“Didn't think you had it in you, Cap,” Natasha says, mouth quirked up in her signature smile.
“He's an asshole,” Clint says waspishly, rubbing his forearms. “He tries to fool you with his angelic stupid patriotic smile, but he is a giant fucking asshole.”
“God Bless America,” Steve says in response, and Bucky almost falls off of his stool laughing.
/ / / / /
Bucky posts a selfie of the two of them in bed to his instagram. The sheets are mussed, a pillow is on the ground. Neither of them are wearing shirts – or pants, or underwear, but the picture doesn't show that – and Steve's hair is an absolute mess, which is nothing compared to Bucky's bird-nest head.
Steve's head is cushioned on the metal arm, his own arms wrapped around Bucky like a kid with a teddy-bear. They're both littered with fading hickies, and Bucky's face in the picture is unmistakably smug, even if it is a little stupidly happy and he looks stupidly in love.
He hashtags it #goodmorningamerica. Sam Wilson and Pepper Potts retweet it to their twitter accounts.
/ / / / /
Sam and Clint are in an on-going war over what is better between Star Wars and Star Trek, and who gets to show which movie to the two men first. Apparently it is a question of honor, to the point that Steve is fairly sure that blood has been spilled over the matter. He would interfere, but. It's funny to watch them snipe and snark and snap at one another.
Bucky chews watermelon flavored gum next to him, same as when they were kids back in the thirties, and blows a bubble.
While the pilot and the sniper fight it out, Natasha and Bruce swoop in to show them the Lord of the Rings, which has enthusiastic responses – they had read The Hobbit as kids, and seeing the stories of elves and dwarves and adventures carried out on the screen is a little magical.
In the end, it's Sam who wins the arm-wrestling-match-of-honor, as they call it, and they spend an entire weekend watching the Star Trek movies. Not just the re-boot ones. All of them.
Bucky and Natasha mockingly imitate Chekov's accent for the next three weeks, and Steve is too excited about the technology and space and special effects to even care. Tony slips him the novelizations under the table at breakfast the next morning, and Clint clutches his head in defeat.
Bucky and Steve buy him a red shirt, and watch him scream and set it on fire with their heads leaning on each others' shoulders and smiles on their faces.
/ / / / /
They find out that people still write Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys books, and invest in a whole collection.
The Smithsonian gives back some of the things they had taken from their old apartment, and Steve almost cries a little when he finds his old, worn out copy of Glinda of Oz. Bucky calls him a giant loser but is a little red-eyed himself when he finds his sister's old schoolbooks, and he puts them on a shelf in their new flat.
They meet Jane Foster and her assistant Darcy, and Thor is love-dumb over the two of them, and when Steve and Jane get into an argument over who's better between Nancy Drew or the Hardy Boys, Thor intervenes.
They apologize to Stark about the broken coffee table real nice-like, and he doesn't seem to care, but Pepper Potts gets her revenge by posting the video to Youtube.
In the end, they get an email from a furniture chain, wanting them to do commercials for their material. Tables strong enough to resist an Avenger, or something like that.
Bucky suggests Steve wear his old USO outfit. He also suggests they fuck in the old USO outfit.
Steve retorts that maybe Bucky should wear one of the chorus girl outfits, and his pupils blow wide and black, and maybe neither and maybe both of those are horrible ideas.
It's an experience, at least.
/ / / / /
They are in their apartment, propped up against the kitchen table, kissing lazily when the door opens.
Coulson makes a choked-off noise and the two startle apart.
“Hey, brother, your mama not teach you how to knock as a kid?” Bucky asks, trying to catch his breath.
“Am I dreaming,” Coulson asks, and it doesn't sound like a question.
“If I say yes, will you say what you needed?” Steve – Captain America! – asks, and he's smiling wryly, his lips swollen apple-red.
“Just needed to drop off some files. Um.” Coulson blinks and puts the files down on the counter, and then he doesn't move, just watches them.
“You wanna take a picture or somethin'?” Bucky asks, annoyed. They haven't moved from their original position – he's still nestled between Steve's legs, and oh wow, Coulson is definitely not looking there, nope, there is nothing there that he has noticed other than the, uh, legs. The kitchen radio is still crooning softly, Stop the world, I want to get off with you.
“I – uh. I. That is. Bye.” He backs off, stammering for the first time in about forty years. As he closes the door, he can hear Barnes say “Thank fuck. Now, where were we?” and Coulson makes a noise a little like he's dying.
Clint is waiting in the car, and when Coulson tells him that Barnes and Rogers are making out to the Arctic Monkeys, he doesn't believe him at first, before laughing so hard he actually has to slide out of the drivers seat so he can brace himself against the car door.
Coulson's face is red.
“Bet they didn't mention this in the saturday morning cartoons, ey?” he jeers, and Coulson just tries to get his face back to a normal color and gets into the car. “Just drive,” he says.
He does not think about what they are doing up there.
/ / / / /
When they're not at the movies or at concerts or nightclubs, or in diners or libraries or arcades playing video games, or visiting schools and hospitals and the occasional HYDRA base, they like to sit in Central Park and watch people walk by.
There are ladies jogging, couples pushing strollers, little yippy dogs with studded harnesses that walk alongside their owners. Kids play, teenagers make out, adults watch their kids and teenagers and sigh.
Bucky and Steve eat street food and sit on a wooden bench. Steve feeds the ducks bits of bread.
“We feel like an old married couple,” Bucky complains behind his black sunglasses, but behind the lenses his eyes are smiling and his stance is comfortable. He is holding Steve's hand, and his thumb traces over his ring finger, the band there.
Steve laughs, a secret smile on his face. It is, he thinks, his favorite thing about the future.