The guards taking their leave was Steve's first cue. Maybe it was that damned war, or maybe it was too many years spent fighting for the same thing day in and day out, but Steve had no hope that this meant his rescue operation was underway. He held no delusions that anyone was coming, that he would be freed from this prison. Nor did he even know if he would leave, given half the chance. He had entered a contract with America by being one of her citizens: had agreed to obey her laws. Even the unjust ones. Even the ones that would sentence him to imprisonment for who knows how long. Steve stared at the wall as he listened to the guards' retreating footsteps. At least this wasn't Athens, and that wasn't hemlock his "old friend" was bringing him.
No. It was something much worse.
"Come back to gloat some more?" Steve asked, voice flat. His eyes stayed fixed on the wall in front of him, never straying to the cell bars and the lone man on the other side.
The man said nothing. The walls stayed still: not a drop of moisture beading on damp stone, not a spider or rat crawling out of hidden passages. A perfect cell, for the world's most perfect soldier.
"No," Steve murmured. He tilted his head back, closed his eyes. Rested his head against the cold cell wall. "No. I know what you're here for."
He was already unbuttoning his pants--belt taken long ago from him, jailers too paranoid he could turn it into a weapon against them.
"I'm not here for-"
"Oh so you do speak?" Steve grunted. He stood up and pushed his pants down to his ankles. He was already hard, damn his body's response. He pretended it didn't bother him, standing tall and proud before the shadowy figure on the other side of the cell bars. He looked at the shadow for a long moment, daring it to speak again. When it didn't, Steve turned around and braced his hands against the cell walls. The cold air chilled his bare ass.
"This is exactly what you're here for," Steve told him.
The cell bars hummed into silence as Director Stark deactivated them and stepped inside.
"Slut to the end," Steve mumbled, loud enough for Tony to hear. Tony's palms hesitated where they were about to rest on Steve's flanks. Finally, after a long pause, they closed the last few inches of space between them and held tight. Steve's body trembled. He clenched his jaw.
"Couldn't turn me over without one more ride."
"I don't see you refusing," Tony shot back. His gloves whispered to the floor. His pants followed more pointedly.
"Could I refuse even if I wanted to?" Steve's erection twitched as Tony lay hands on him again; bare hands, this time. Steve closed his eyes and breathed and tried not to think of the good times, all the times those hands had softly caressed him, had held him, had made his body sing out in delight. He tried to remember the punches and the betrayals and the raw skin and the blood. But there was so much of the former, and so little of the latter. Steve's body responded to Tony's touch.
"Of course you could." Tony's words were a whisper. Then, louder: "But you couldn't. You never could refuse me."
"You're a spoiled little rich boy and I should have refused you more," Steve told him. "Taught you the meaning of patience. Of gratitude. Of-"
"A stern hand?"
They fell silent. Steve's hands turned to fists against the cell wall.
"Get on with it. I'm sure Director Stark has plenty else that needs his attention this evening."
Tony's hands left Steve's hips, then drifted back.
"I brought..." Tony went quiet. A second later some slick pressed at Steve's entrance. He forced his muscles to relax as Tony prepared him.
"What, you want a thank-you? For being considerate enough not to rip me up inside?"
Tony's hands fell away from Steve. A shuddering sob filled the tiny cell, and it took Steve a moment to realize it wasn't coming from him. There was a thump, then a scrape. Steve glanced over his shoulder to see Tony sliding down against the opposite cell wall, coming to a seat on the ground. One hand was over his eyes, the other held up, away from him, still glistening with slick.
Tony's body shook with sobs. Steve looked to the floor, spotting the tube of slick in the dim light. He snatched it up, ignoring Tony's weakness. Ignoring Tony's cry for pity, his pathetic call for Steve to feel sorry for him, for Steve to just understand. Steve understood. Quickly Steve began to prepare himself, shoving two fingers inside and rubbing the slick around. He poured more on his fingers before shoving them inside again, coating his insides with the stuff.
"Get up, Stark," Steve grunted. One more quick pass and he tossed the slick on the floor. Stuck his hand out, still glistening with lubricant, and crooked it at Tony.
Dropping his hands, Tony's head jerked back, tear-filled eyes scanning the ceiling. "How the hell did we end up like this?"
"Get up." He would not feel sorry for Tony Stark.
"I was trying to do what was right. I was trying to be like you."
"Get the fuck up, Stark." He was in this jail cell. He was going to prison, maybe even be executed. Not Stark.
"I think it was worth it. I think it was, because you'll understand, won't you? Eventually. You'll understand that I was trying to do right."
Before Steve knew what was happening, he had Tony by the front of his uniform. Steve picked him up like a rag doll, threw him against the wall of the cell. Tony's head cracked against the concrete and steel, but he didn't even seem to notice. His eyes were brimming with tears, unfocused and rolling around in his skull like he was looking, looking, looking for something he couldn't see. What couldn't he see? Steve was standing here, in front of him. All of Tony's failures, all of Tony's sins were right here, made flesh, shaking him and shaking him and "Get over your self-pity self-aggrandizement and fuck me like a man, you spoiled little Stark!" Steve spat.
Tony's eyes snapped to focus, finally. They met Steve's, blue with blue, crackling electricity with the angry deep.
"I love you," Tony mumbled, like he was just remembering it. Like he had forgotten.
Steve's chest caved in. His back stayed straight. "I've always loved you."
Something like the ghost of a smile flittered across Tony's face, beneath the tear tracks and snot. "What, is it a competition now?"
Steve threw Tony back, let that expensive uniform go. He turned around and resumed his position on the cell wall: hands up, ass out.
"Isn't everything with you?"
Tony pushed into him easily, fucked him with a condom on like they were strangers in a bar. Steve took every inch, body rocking with Tony's pounding thrusts. The cell wall shook in front of him as his body did. His fingers were bruised and sore by the end, gripping too tight at the impenetrable steel. His ass hurt, but that was his own fault. He couldn't quite force his muscles to relax all the way.
"I'm not sorry," Tony grunted as he fucked him. "I'm not sorry."
"I wasn't wrong," Steve told him. He jerked his erection in his fist, halfway to the damn brink already.
"But I was right."
"For the wrong reasons."
"Do it, Tony."
Steve fucked back hard on Tony's cock, grinding his hips and clenching down, working Tony the way only he knew how.
"Do it, Tony."
Tony came with a guttural cry, hips jerking awkwardly as he milked himself inside Steve's ass. Steve jerked himself a few more times until he came with a grunt. He reached back and wiped his hand on Tony's expensive black uniform.
He hoped Tony would have to do his own laundry to avoid explaining the stain. Probably wouldn't, though. Would probably just lie, come up with an excuse. Or say nothing and expect no one to question him.
There wasn't anyone around to question Tony, anymore. After all, Steve was stuck in here.
Steve steadied his breathing as he pulled up his pants. Turned his body so Tony wouldn't see his hands trembling as he buttoned himself up.
"Have you figured it out, yet?" Steve asked Tony as he picked up his own pants.
"What?" Tony kept his face turned away from Steve as he zipped and buckled up. He stuffed the used condom in his pocket.
"Was it worth it?"
Tony stopped just inside the cell bars, back to Steve. His fingers squirmed at his sides, looking for something to do. The engineer.
"You're always worth it, Steve."
"Not an answer."
"No. It wasn't an answer."
There were droplets of lube and semen on the ground when Tony left, cell bars glowing bright once more. Steve spat on them as the guards returned, resuming their post. Tony would see. One day. Bitterly, Steve wondered if he'd be alive to see it.