Cackles and wild giggling greeted Clint as he stepped out of the elevator on the laboratory floor. On any other occasion, he might be reaching for his phone to call for backup. Insane laughter on this floor tended to mean one scientist or another expected a brilliant breakthrough at any moment...which often meant an explosion or two first. He got caught in one - but only one. Spending a day in medical under careful observation taught him not to underestimate the potential danger of their collection of crazy geniuses.
Tonight though...tonight was a different story.
Thor’s lady friend and her assistant had shoved the Asgardian out of his apartment in order to have a girls’ night. “Something involving much alcohol and some things called ‘chick flicks’,” Thor informed them. Not that the big guy seemed to mind, laughing as he told his teammates of times his mother had done the same. So he accompanied some of the others into the city. Clint’s plans involved a movie marathon and feeding his dog - actually that might be his plan for the whole weekend.
Until a couple of minutes ago when he got a text from Nat.
Go check on Jane and Darcy. They’re drunk texting from the lab.
Yeah, that got him moving. Drunk and lab - two words that should not go together in the same sentence.
Not that they looked too dangerous at the moment. Jane’s hands kept moving through the air as she tried to explain something to her assistant. It might have worked better if Darcy hadn’t been focused on sticking smiley face post-it notes all over Bruce’s lab windows. Clint eyed them, running an amused and appreciative gaze over the attractive pair.
He’d met the lady doc when Thor first brought her to the Tower. She’d been nicer than he expected given his work with SHIELD in New Mexico, but then again, her attention had been diverted by Tony and Bruce almost immediately. The three of them went into a science spiel and lost everyone else within the first sentence or two. Since then they’d crossed paths a time or two and she told him she intended to ignore his involvement in hijacking her stuff since Thor vouched for him.
Given her tendency to rewrite the laws of physics and Thor’s protective stance, he counted himself lucky.
Darcy he hadn’t managed to meet yet. Jane and Thor insisted the dark-haired assistant be given an apartment in the Tower if they were going to stay, and Tony hadn’t argued, but first the younger woman wanted to visit her family. By the time she made it to New York, Clint and Nat had been on assignment.
As if Budapest weren’t bad enough, now he had to avoid Paris for a few years...at least until someone else pissed off the local underworld more than the two of them.
They got back a week ago and he’d slept for a full day before beginning his post-mission unwind. He needed that time to ease off his hair trigger instincts. That was the same day Thor and his ladies went off to the desert for a few days to get some clear readings. So yeah, he hadn’t met Darcy as yet.
Figures the first time he gets to meet the gorgeous woman...and she’s drunk.
Clint stepped into the lab, a smirk playing over his lips as he walked towards the two inebriated women now spinning in a couple of desk chairs, empty glasses in hand. Jane spotted him and almost fell out of her chair as she tried to stop spinning. She clutched her glass, blinking at him for a couple of minutes before giggling. One finger came up to shush him...or at least that’s what he thought she tried to do. Said finger smacked her cheek instead and she chortled.
“W’as so funny?” Darcy demanded, still spinning in slow motion. “And why’s t’ceiling moving?”
“Arms!” Jane announced as she threw her own up in the air. Her glass went flying across the room. It shattered against the floor and she laughed. “Another!”
“You sound like t’Big Guy.” The brunette stopped her chair to stare at her boss. Clint couldn’t see her face, but he would bet her eyes had trouble focusing on the other woman. Darcy swayed in her chair. “And Arms is not t’Big Guy.”
Jane nodded. “Big Guy is my guy.”
“Hmm, mmm.” Jane grinned at Clint. There was some kind of message in her expression that he just wasn’t getting - probably because Drunk Doc didn’t communicate as well as Sober Doc...and Sober Doc had trouble communicating anything non-science anyway.
“The dude,” Darcy repeated, tilting a little sideway. He wondered if she meant to only tilt her head or if the whole body thing was a deliberate choice. She continued talking. “The dude with the arms….tha’s wrong. Arms is the dude...the dude…” An exasperated huff vibrated through her, but then she sat up straight. “Dude with the bow!” she exclaimed. “Robin Hood!”
Clint’s eyebrows rose. She talking about him? The Robin Hood reference he got, but how’d he get ‘Arms’ for a nickname?
“Arms!” Jane repeated, clapping her hands this time. Now he focused on her. Slender and waifish, the scientist had to be a lightweight when it came to alcohol. How much had they had? And should he give Thor a head’s up about his lady friend’s state? Yeah...good idea. He pulled out his phone and sent a quick text to Nat.
They’re trashed. Better send him back.
“Hmm...want to bite those arms.”
That little comment yanked his attention back to Darcy.
“Bite?” Jane frowned, leaning her chin on her hand.
“Yeah,” Darcy chuckled as she leaned back in her seat, propping her bare feet up on the desk. Her voice held a dreamy, almost sing-song tone. “Tie him up and bite down.”
This little interlude was shifting from amusing to interesting.
His attention centered on her now, eyes doing a slow scan of the curvaceous half-hidden by the large sleepshirt and pajama bottoms. Apparently they’d had time for pedicures before diving into their drinks, and her toenails glittered deep purple...something that should not be as sexy as it was. Following the line of her body, he traced the hourglass figure all the way up to the thick curly hair flowing like a waterfall over the back of the chair.
“Why tie him up?” Jane prompted.
“He’s a bird,” Darcy proclaimed in a dire tone. “He might fly’way.”
Her boss frowned, tilting her head and gazing at him as if considering the idea. Then she nodded. “Right. Y’need rope”
“Don’t have any,” the intern pouted.
“Oh!” Darcy perked up. “I’ve got those!”
Clint folded his arms over his chest and felt his smirk turn wicked. Suddenly his weekend plans took on a whole new potential as he watched Darcy giggle as she outlined a plan to catch him. Said plan involved a distraction, a net, and possibly bribing Nat.
Pretty good plan for a drunk woman actually.
He pulled his thoughts - and his libido - back under control as he heard the elevator doors opening. Slipping back into the hallway, he intercepted Thor. “Hey,” he nodded.
Thor returned his nod before lifting his brows. “Lady Natasha informed me that my Jane is...trashed?”
“Drunk,” Clint nodded. “Silly and loopy drunk.”
“Thank you for calling for me, my friend,” the Asgardian chuckled. “I should get my lady to her rest.” He strode towards the doorway, only to stop and shake his head when he looked into the lab. Rueful eyes turned back to Clint. “Perhaps you might assist me with the Lady Darcy? Even I might have trouble dealing with both of them in such a state.”
“No problem.” Not a problem at all. Clint knew how protective Thor could be in regards to either woman, so he’d planned to officially introduce himself to Darcy in the morning, but getting on the big guy’s good side now in regards to the woman wouldn’t hurt either.
The two walked into the lab and Jane lit up at the sight of her alien prince. She stood up, swaying. “Thor!”
“Big Guy!” Darcy chimed in as she gave both men a bright smile. She gestured to Clint and opened her mouth.
“More drinks!” Jane interrupted before her friend could speak.
“Perhaps it is time to declare an end to your girls’ night,” Thor suggested as he moved to Jane’s side and wrapped an arm around her shoulders..
She pulled free from Thor and crossed her arms over her chest. “No.” Jane ignored her swaying in order to make an announcement. “Ev’rbody needs t’drink!”
Thor put a hand on her shoulder. “My Jane-.”
“Drink!” she insisted.
“Now, Doc,” Clint began, only to stop when he felt someone poke him in the side. He turned and raised an eyebrow at Darcy’s scowling expression.
She shoved a multi-colored drink at him. “Taste the frickin’ rainbow!”
He should have been more surprised. That was what he would tell people in the future when they asked him about meeting his soulmate. Right this moment though, he wanted to laugh. Leave it to him to find her like this. Those words had puzzled him ever since they showed up on his forearm during his teens. Out of every connotation he could think up, a rainbow drink had not been one he’d considered. And yet he didn’t feel any surprise. After everything else that had happened in the past year, finding his soulmate in one of the few people allowed to know about the team sent a wave of relief through him.
“Drink!” she ordered, pushing the glass at him again.
This time he accepted the glass and sipped. Vodka for sure he noted, but he wasn’t as certain about what else might be mixed in. His eyes focused on her now beaming face. “Are you always this domineering or is it just for me?”
Darcy blinked at him, her eyes going wide as her jaw dropped. Her hand flew to her hip and his lips twitched as he realized what he’d inscribed on her...and where.
“Words!” Jane bounced, shaking off Thor’s restraining hand to point at Clint. “Arms said Darcy’s words!”
Thor’s eyes narrowed on her in confusion, but then comprehension cut through the haze and his gaze flew up to meet the archer’s. “This is true, my friend?” he asked. “Are you the fated partner of Lady Darcy?”
“I’ve got her words on my forearm,” Clint affirmed even as he turned his focus back on the brunette. On the arm I keep covered by a guard whenever possible. With the lack of familial connections, he had been almost obsessive about protecting the link to his soulmate. Nat teased him about it, but she’d also made sure to keep an extra arm guard in their supplies. Nothing better than having a partner who understood and aided your quirks. “Guess she’s got mine.”
“Over m’hip.” Darcy’s slurred voice rejoined the conversation.
“This is indeed good news!” Thor clapped Clint on the shoulder. “You should make an excellent partner for the Lady Darcy. I had worried for her. Lesser men would not be able to handle the responsibility of being bonded to such a shield maiden.”
Clint grinned at his teammate, having straightened back up after being almost knocked into the desk. “Glad you approve.”
“I’m m’own hero.” Darcy huffed with a disgruntled frown.
“Of course you are,” Thor agreed, still smiling. “Thus the need for another as your mate.” He swung Jane into his arms. “I shall see my lady to her rest,” he informed them. “I have no doubt the women will succumb to their intoxication soon.”
“I’ll get Darcy safely to her rooms,” Clint promised, glancing back at Darcy before turning to face Thor. “And try to get some water into her.”
“Of this I have no doubt,” Thor accepted, “though I would wish you much luck at the second. A good night to you both.”
Darcy appeared at his side and leaned into him. “Big guy’s a big sap.”
Doing his best to ignore the curves pressing into him, he gave her a quick grin. “Yeah, but he’s a good sort.”
“He’s Thor,” she corrected. “So he’s awesome. Jane’s kinda awesome too. Gonna be some awesome babies. And pretty ones...Thor better keep Myuh-Myuh handy. He’s gonna need it.”
“And you need sleep.”
“Kiss me first?” She blinked up at him with guileless blue eyes.
And that kind of temptation he didn’t need. “You trying to get me into trouble, sweetheart?”
“No,” she pouted, pulling away and tripping towards the door. “Just wanna kiss.”
His hand shot out to grab her arm. Pulling her to him, he pressed a chaste kiss to her forehead. “Tell you what, princess, how about you ask me in the morning?” he offered. “Ask me again when you’re sober and I’ll give you a kiss you won’t forget.”
“Sweetheart, I will swear it on anything you want me to.”