They’re in the funeral home, in fact, they’re the only people in the funeral home. No family, no distant family, no one else except for them, and if he were alive, he would have probably wanted it that way. Quiet. Respectful. No loud sobbing. They know that he would not have wanted some frivolous excursion for his final goodbyes; they know he would want plain and simple, just like he was when his heart still had a beat, color was in his cheeks, and his eyes were open, taking in the world and its possibilities. And now—here he is. Laying in a casket, clad in black, hands folded, resting on his stomach. His skin is white, seemingly translucent if you examined it in harsh light, but under the soft lights in the funeral home, he just seems like a guy with a pale complexion.
No preacher reads texts from the bible. No prayers are sent to a deity that may or may not exist. There is only silence, beautiful silence, and if he were alive to witness this, he probably would have spared a small smile before returning to his usual indifferent countenance. They have a feeling about this, and in the mute they all agree, silently of course. Though a few of them still need to learn about respect, they know enough about it to give some at this moment. It was Phil’s wish, after all—silence. A modest funeral. Nothing else.
They all wish—they wish that he were still here, doing his job: chiding all of them. They miss the rebuking, they missed Phil.
And, in that very room, they realized that you did not know how much you needed someone until you could never see them again.
In each of their hands is a single daffodil. The bright, yellow color jumps out at their dark attires. One at a time, they each go up to the casket and lay the flower inside, murmuring their goodbyes and moving on. Tasha goes first; she sets the flower near his folded hands and whispers, “You were an agent to the very end.” She lowers her head and moves on, nearing Clint, and he takes her hand and gives it a reassuring squeeze.
Thor goes next, laying the flower gingerly in the casket, and breaths, “You were a valiant warrior. Mayhap we shall meet again in Valhalla, where all warriors go when they fight their last battle.”
He moves on, and Clint goes next, placing the flower in the casket and muttering, “You’ve done much for me. Here’s my gift to you. Wherever we go in the afterlife, Coulson—I hope we meet again.”
He returns to his place next to Natasha, and Steve glances at them before hesitantly stepping up to the casket. He is holding two things. He puts the flower into the coffin and breathes shakily, “I was oblivious. Fury told me you had been a childhood fan…so here.” He places the second object inside the coffin—a bloodstained Captain America trading card with Steve’s scrawl written on it, and a message: ‘See you when I see you.’ He swallows the lump forming in his throat and returns to the others, Bruce clapping him on the shoulders before he goes up and does what the others did, whispering, “You were a good agent.” He really can’t think of anything else to say, so he just gulps and steps away.
Tony sighs and adjusts the collar of his shirt. He approaches the coffin and gazes down at Coulson. Pale, lifeless Coulson. They hadn’t been really friends, just acquaintances, but he still mourned for the loss of the SHIELD agent. He scrunches up his nose and his hand hovers over the pile of daffodils that has conglomerated over his hands; he notices the flower shaking, realizing that he is the one that’s shaking, and he drops the flower on the pile, choking out, “You just had to go and try to fight him, didn’t you? That’s our Coulson.”
He walks away from the coffin briskly, standing next to Steve, and Captain America places a tentative hand on his shoulder. Tony shakes his head and covers his eyes with his hands, biting his lip. Everyone seems to take notice of this, and immediately worry spreads through them. Tony is losing his cool. Soon, Natasha purses her lips as tears run down her cheeks. Thor stares down at the floor for the longest of times, eyes becoming pink. Clint’s blinking rapidly, eyes moist. Steve’s shoulders are shaking from trying to hold his emotions in. Tears are welling up in Tony’s eyes, and they spill over, coating his face in the salty tang. Bruce’s eyes are glowing green, but he does not Hulk out. Perhaps the Other Guy knows that it is not the best time.
In the room, they mourn for the loss of their fallen comrade.
The daisies’ yellow petals rest on Coulson’s body. They are bright and vivid, bringing light into the dark time. That is what they’re for: the daisy represents hope. And, though they are mourning now, Phil’s comrades hope. They hope that they can avenge him.
They hope that Phil has finally reached peace.