The Avengers mansion was currently silent; a very rare occurrence. Thor was on Asgard at the moment – he had mumbled something about Loki managing to escape his binds once again (Natasha was of the opinion that Thor was unable to surpass his affection for his brother, and so was unwilling to imprison or hurt him); and the remaining Avengers were battling Doom.
The SHIELD physician had declared her incapacitated by her cracked rib, much to her dismay, so she was unable to join them. She had argued with Fury; insisting that she should be allowed to fight alongside her friends. It irked her that she was rendered incapable of fighting; she felt useless.
Natasha turned off the television. The thought of the other Avengers battling Doombots without her made her feel restless. She should be out there contributing; regardless of what Fury may think.
“Natasha?” Her earpiece crackled to life and she jumped. “Can you hear me?”
“Clint? Aren’t you a little too busy to call me right now?” She smiled at the sound of his voice. He sounded fine, if perhaps a little tired. “Is there something wrong?”
“No, no. I just wanted to call to make sure you’re still at the mansion. I know it’s killing you to not be out here with us.”
“Yes, I’m still here. I’m not going to leave and join the fight.” Natasha assured him.
“You were considering though, I bet? I know you, Nat. We’ll be finished soon. Stark is rounding up the last of them as we speak. Stay there, okay? I don’t want you hurt.”
The call cut off, but she wasn’t concerned. Clint would be safe with the others; Tony was far too fond of him (not that he would ever admit it) to let serious harm come to him. She opened their bedroom door and winced at the mess.
“There’s a laundry basket for a reason, Clint.” Natasha murmured to herself as she cleared up the clothes strewn on the floor, her face screwed up in disgust. A golden chain fell to the floor and she picked it up to inspect it.
It was a simple necklace; clearly only purchased to hold the ring dangling from it. The ring was beautiful; it too, was gold and inlaid with a ruby. She frowned, scrutinising it closely. Clint had never mentioned an ex-fiancée to her.
“Do you like it?” She gasped at the sound of his voice, her heart pounding. “Wow, you were really distracted, Nat. It’s usually very, very difficult to sneak up on you.”
“Who did this belong to?” Natasha cleared her throat and tried to regain her dignity. He reached for it and she obliged, watching as he slipped the ring from the chain.
“It was my grandmother’s.” He replied softly, a small smile on his face. “It was easier to keep than photographs. It’s the only thing I have left that reminds me of her.”
“It’s beautiful.” Natasha smiled. It wasn’t often that they talked of their pasts; bitterness and nostalgia could often cloud your judgement on a mission and so they had learned to forgo it years ago.
“I’ve, um, been meaning to give it you.” He says quietly, avoiding her shocked stare. “I just haven’t found the right moment.”
“Clint…” She whispered, awed. There was no possible way that this was happening; perhaps she was jumping to conclusions. “Are you…?”
“Yes. I’m not going to do anything clichéd, because we aren’t exactly a conventional couple.” He grabbed her hand and pulled her to the bed. “I love you, and I want to be with you. I’m not entirely sure that you want marriage, but…”
She kissed him to stop his rambling; a chaste, tender press of the lips. “I didn’t know that I wanted to be married until you asked.”
“So is that a yes?” He gazed at her.
“It is, yes.” They both laughed. “I’m fairly certain marriage proposals aren’t usually that awkward.”
“I’m pretty sure not every marriage is between two operatives of a top-secret organisation. It’s pretty rare.” Clint smirked. “Fury’s going to complain about this.”
He reattached the ring to the chain and slipped it over her head.
“Let him. I have plenty of blackmail material on SHIELD.” She smirked.
“Oh god, I love you.”