Doubt thou the stars are fire,
Doubt that the sun doth move,
Doubt truth to be a liar,
But never doubt I love.
– Hamlet, Act 2, Scene 2
She glanced up when she felt him grip her wrist, eyes wide. Bucky was livid, his nostrils flared.
“I don’t know what’s going on in that thick head of yours, Jemma,” he spat through gritted teeth, “but, I think it’s about damn time someone relieves you of your delusions about this- us.”
She scowled down at the human hand woven tightly around her wrist to avoid the intensity of his gaze. “I’m afraid I don’t know what you’re-”
He growled and tugged roughly on her wrist. She stumbled forward into the man’s chest, flush against him with her hands spread to steady herself; she felt more than heard the rustle of clothing as his arms locked her in place. Still, she squirmed.
“Bucky! Don’t you dare-”
In one fluid movement, he pinned the little scientist against the wall. With no escape, she steeled her gaze, leveling a glare towards the man once known as the Winter Soldier. Jemma inhaled sharply. “What is the meaning of this?” The apples of her cheeks burned with color due to frustration as well as embarrassment.
“You’re not allowed to leave,” he all but snarled, leaning forward to press his palms on either side of her head, effectively caging her in. She could feel his erratic heart beat from deep within his chest cavity with the way he was pressed against her, could feel his labored breathing, his chest heaving with the effort.
Jemma swallowed. Every hair on her body stood on end. She was nervous, unsure as to how to pull away, worried he might catch on to how she was feeling – a great longing intermingled with fear. There was no way to hide the tremor in her voice as she spoke, and she cursed herself wordlessly for sounding so vulnerable in the moment. “You have no authority over my person.”
His breath was hot, fanning against her ear. “Like hell I don’t.”
Calloused fingers stroked the length of her jaw before trailing downwards to press gently over the smooth planes of her stomach underneath her collared blouse. It would only be a matter of time before the tell-tale pregnancy bump developed – a promise of what was to come. “This is mine.”
He laced their fingers together, tightening his hold only as she tried to rip her hand away. “As is this-” Bucky took a deep breath. “Ours.”
She whimpered. “Please don’t do this! Please- I can’t, I just can’t-”
“Jemma.” He said, grasping her chin gently between metal thumb and forefinger, lifting it so that she would be forced to meet his gaze, a hidden emotion she found she could not identify swirling around stormy flecks of gray. She couldn’t move; she could barely breathe when he looked at her like that, with that unknown expression. Her chest tightened, her pulse quickened, her hands fisted at her sides. A raw, musky scent swirled around her, and her vision began to swim.
He hovered above her for a moment, just testing the space between them. Then he swooped forward and captured her lips with his own, swallowing any protests she might have made, no matter if most would have been half-hearted at best.
He knew her, knew she wanted him just as much as he wanted her. For this reason, it was natural for the super soldier to deepen the kiss, slipping his tongue between her petal pink lips, tasting every part of her. She was like a drug. He couldn’t get enough of her, didn’t think he’d ever be able to go so far without plundering her pretty mouth, nipping at her bottom lip with his teeth, swallowing her breathy gasps, and battling her for dominance with his tongue.
“Tell me to stop,” he told her, trailing open-mouthed kisses down her neck. “Tell me to stop, and I will.” He pulled away then, wanting to see how she would respond.
Unfocused brown eyes met his, the woman trembling in his arms.
“You know I can’t,” she said, her voice no more than a whisper.
Bucky nodded. He’d figured as much. “So give in.”
She shook her head. “Giving in has never been a viable option. I will not allow myself to think you love me like I- like I-” Abruptly, she cut herself off in a rush, closed her eyes, and leaned away from him as much as she could, bracing herself for an unfavorable reaction.
He stiffened at this admission, inhaled sharply. “You love me.” A statement, not a question.
She did not dare answer, trying to calm the racing of her heart. This was not the way she thought he would find out. Her silence was answer enough to give her away.
The beginnings of a sob caught in her throat. “I do.”
Bucky stared her down, finding himself at a loss for words though a fierce and possessive kind of hope reflected in his eyes. And then he was kissing her, kissing her like he had never kissed her before, like a man who had been starved of affection for far too long. He kissed her as if he might never get the chance to do so again. He kissed her closed lids, her furrowed brow, the line of her jaw; he kissed the hollows of her cheeks, the very tip of her nose, and smoothed away the frown lines of her forehead with his lips. His kisses were feather light, but each one sent little jolts of pleasure and desire singing through her body.
She gave into the feeling of his lips molded to hers, allowed her fingers to grasp the hairs at the base of his skull, nails scraping against his scalp. She almost felt as if he was trying to consume her then, perhaps to suffocate her with his mouth alone. Jemma clung to him like a lifeline, marveled at the way his bulky figure fit against her tiny frame as she kissed him back with all the fervor she could muster. She ghosted the pads of her thumbs across his cheeks, absentmindedly traced the stubble at his chin, and when he finally pulled back to take a breath, she surprised even herself by plunging forward to nip his bottom lip between her teeth.
He swallowed hard, Adam’s apple bobbing convulsively.
“Jemma,” he said, and she immediately took notice of his gratifyingly hoarse and breathless voice.
“Please don’t leave me. Don’t go. I... I l-” Words failed him as he struggled with the damned four-letter word he couldn’t bring himself to say just yet, frantically wracking his brain for a way to convey how much she truly meant to him. She was his everything, and he was the fool of fools for keeping her at arm’s length for as long as he had.
She watched him struggle for several moments more before she silenced him with a kiss. “I know,” she said, “I know. I’m- I’m not going anywhere. Not without you.”
Bucky sagged against her in absolute relief, burrowing his face into the crook of her neck, softly murmuring his thanks.