Thankful was not the word that came to mind when Steve's goose appeared.
He was thankful that it appeared after he got the serum. He had always dreaded the idea of some poor girl seeing scrawny him at her doorstep with an angry, feathered foul declaring them soulmates.
He was also thankful that it clearly wasn’t as violent as some other geese he had seen people have in the past.
What Steve Rogers was not thankful for was that this goose appeared in the middle of his incredibly expensive, French hotel room while he was getting ready for his USO show that night. Unsure of what to do, Steve closed the door behind him and went to the show manager’s room down the hall to explain the situation. It wasn’t until he was waiting for his knock to be answered that he realized his new downy friend was pecking at his pant leg, demanding attention.
As soon as the door opened, the goose let out a loud honk to make itself known. Steve turned red and began to stammer, but the manager just held a hand up informing him that they had planned for this inevitability.
This is how Steve’s goose got itself its own private pen as they went from camp to camp around France.
This solution didn’t last very long, however. As they neared the Italian border, the goose began to get out of his cage and tried to wander off, but each time Steve would somehow wrangle him back into the cage and go on stage.
It only took about a week after the escape attempts started before it wandered out on stage. The manager was about to run out and make a feast out of the damned bird, but it was as if the animal had an understanding of the English language and comedic timing. Somehow the bird waddled across the stage just as the girls sang, “Who’ll hang a noose on the goose-stepping goons from Berlin?” causing the crowd to go wild.
Soon the goose was as costumed as Steve and was incorporated into the act.
A few months later, as their tour moved through Italy, Steve’s performance was cut off for two reasons. One, the men clearly wanted to see more of the girls and he couldn’t blame them. Two, his goose, which he had taken to calling Howard, to spite the playboy, was attacking him more than usual.
Steve had just finished talking to Colonel Phillips and Peggy about Bucky when he returned to his quarters to find that his goose had flown the coop.
Grimacing, Steve got his gear, ready to abandon the goose and find Bucky himself. He had made his way to the airfield, ready to commander Stark’s plane, when he noticed his feathered white terror waddling towards the very plane Steve had planned for his own getaway.
Figuring that he was finally doing what the damn goose wanted, Steve followed him - after he got Peggy and Howard on board with his plan.
Up in the air, the goose sat patiently by the door. As soon as Howard gave him the okay for the drop, Steve’s walking Christmas dinner began to peck at the airplane's door.
This is how Steve found himself jumping out of an airplane with a goose in his shirt.
As he began to trudge through the woods and stow away on a caravan, Steve realized there was no way he could take the goose with him on his mission - not only would it give away his position, but it just wasn’t logistically feasible.
Thus, as soon as he knocked out the guard who was unfortunate enough to inspect his caravan, Steve placed Howard the Goose carefully on the ground knowing he’d find a way back to Steve eventually.
Steve quickly made his way through the Hydra base, and eventually stumbled upon his soon to be Howling Commandos, freeing them. As the men create a distraction, Steve continued to search through the facilities. He caught sight of Zola and began to chase him down a hallway. He’s only halfway before he is abruptly stopped by the clear honk of Howard, his goose.
Steve quickly turned towards the direction of the noise and walked into a room that appeared to be a laboratory of some kind. Steve looked around and is directed by yet another loud honk towards the damn goose sitting on the chest of someone tied to a table, muttering to themselves. Steve cautiously walked closer he only to find that the goose that was supposed to lead him to his soulmate was perched on Bucky.
With a final honk and a peck at both Steve and Bucky’s chests, Howard wandered off, leaving Steve to unstrap Bucky from the table.
“Happy Goose Day, Rogers,” the other man grinned as he came to in his oldest friend and soulmate’s arms, leaning forward to thoroughly kiss the blond. “I always told you, I’m with you ‘til the end of the line.”