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Sleepless

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Bucky pulled the blanket over Tony and himself, and snuggled closer to the other man. Tony turned in his arms to kiss him good night before curling up against Bucky and pulling his metal arm around him.

Planting a kiss on Tony's head, Bucky hugged him close. It was about time they went to sleep, Tony had been working too much lately. The new team, Tony's duties with Stark Industries, taking care of the younger heroes, it all ate up a lot of Tony's time. The bags under his eyes spoke volumes, even if Tony hid his tiredness behind make-up, coffee and being excited. All of it was something that meant a lot to Tony, work that he loved and deemed important.

Bucky closed his eyes, smiling contently in the knowledge that he himself was also one of the people Tony loved. After Tony had forgotten the civil war and the time afterwards, Bucky had spent years avoiding his feelings. Once Tony had at last remembered, Bucky took heart from that and finally confessed. He still sometimes couldn't believe his luck. They were together, happy, and both in it for the long haul.

Drifting off, Bucky sighed contently, with Tony secure in his arms.

~~~

Bucky startled awake when he felt the warm weight against him shift and disappear.

"Tony?" he slurred, looking around, his eyes still sleepy and unfocused.

"Shh, it's all fine." Tony appeared standing at his bedside and nudged him to settle down again. "I can't sleep," he whispered. "I'll go find a distraction, you should sleep." Tony squeezed his hand, tucked him in again and kissed his forehead. With a last look, Tony left the room and closed the door quietly.

Bucky sighed. Sleeping in the same bed usually helped Tony with falling asleep, but sometimes it wasn't enough. Bucky staying awake and worrying wouldn't help Tony, though.

Closing his eyes again, Bucky turned to the side and hugged the blanket closer. After a while, his breathing had calmed again.

"FRIDAY... Where is Tony?" he asked, barely loud enough for the AI to pick up.

"Tony has left the building, his armor is in do-not-disturb setting." FRIDAY replied.

Bucky squeezed his eyes shut tighter.

Tony did that sometimes. Sneaking out late at night, when he couldn't sleep, or sometimes during the day, when he was overwhelmed. It happened more when Bucky was away on a mission or not in the city for some other reason. But even when Bucky was there, Tony sometimes left, only to return a few hours later, usually more relaxed and calm. And then he lied about where he was.

It wasn't that Bucky was suspicious. This was Tony and Bucky trusted him.

However, Bucky might be a little worried. He'd seen Tony almost self destruct and try to keep it secret, after Steve's death, but this was different. And while Tony was willing to risk a lot to do what was right, Bucky could read him well enough to see when something was really bothering him. Or so he hoped.

He drifted off again, trying not to think about it.

~~~

Bucky awoke when the bed dipped next to him.

He let out a questioning grunt.

Tony slid under the cover next to him and chuckled lightly. "Just me. Let's just sleep for a few hours?" he whispered.

Bucky tugged him closer and felt Tony relax against him.

"Love you," he slurred clinging to Tony. Then, he fell asleep again, with Tony already snoring into his shoulder.

Chapter Text

Bucky stepped out of the shower, dried himself off and pulled on some sweatpants. He crawled into bed next to Tony, who was still reading. Closing his book, Tony leaned down to kiss Bucky's forehead.

"Ready to actually sleep?" Tony asked, smiling softly.

Grunting, Bucky rubbed a hand over his eyes and nodded. Bucky hadn't slept at all the last two nights, and maybe a few hours the night before that. He was bone-deep tired, but still didn't feel sleepy. Tonight he'd actually sleep. He'd been spending a few hours in the gym to hopefully reach a level of exhaustion where he'd just have to fall asleep.

Tony curled against him, a warm and comforting weight against his side. Feeling him closeby usually helped. Tony started snoring lightly soon after.

Bucky stared at the ceiling, wide awake.

 

A few hours later, even the comfort of cuddling Tony couldn't keep him in bed anymore.

He tried to move slowly, so he could get up without waking Tony. His endeavour was not successful, as Tony stirred next to him and grunted out a unintelligible question.

Bucky sighed and sank down again, defeated. "...I can't sleep," he mumbled as an explanation and ran a hand over his face. "I'm going crazy. I'm so tired, but I just can't fall asleep. My body just doesn't seem to get the memo to not be on edge anymore."

Tony sat up, rubbed at his eyes and blinked a few times, before he seemed to actually wake up. A soft, humming sound escaped him. He looked Bucky over, contemplating for a long while. Then, he nodded to himself.

"Okay. Let's do this. Get up, get dressed, we're going for a ride."

Bucky frowned in confusion. "Where are we going?" he asked, but got up like Tony told him to. Tony's idea might be crazy or brilliant, sometimes there was no telling before it actually happened.

"You'll see. Come on, normal clothes, no spandex." Tony called back while strolling into the bathroom.

Bucky rolled his eyes and huffed. As if Tony didn't know best that his costume was made of far sturdier material. Tony had built it, after all.

 

~~~

 

Tony led Bucky out of the car and towards a big building with an engraved sign in front of it.

"An orphanage?" Bucky asked, while following Tony inside.

"Yep." Tony said curtly, his sunglasses hiding his eyes.

After changing a few quiet words with a nurse, Tony led him into a room with a few baby beds in it.

He picked one of the babies up and carefully handed it to Bucky, arranging Bucky's arms so the baby was resting securely.

"Here. Just hold her. She needs the cuddles and you probably do, too," Tony whispered, taking off his sunglasses and pushing them into his pocket.

Bucky couldn't help but stare at the child. She was soft and warm and so, so cute. He could hear her breathe quietly and calmly. Her tiny hands were tucked into her blanket and her eyes were closed.

When Tony spoke softly, Bucky startled up. He hadn't realized it must have been a few minutes with him just standing and staring.

"I wanted to tell you before, you know. But I'm not sure I could have explained it. And it's not like I'm doing anything wrong." Tony avoided Bucky's eyes, looking into one of the beds while speaking.

Bucky looked around again. "So this is where you run off to when you can't sleep?"

Tony nodded.

Bucky leaned up to kiss Tony's cheek. "You know I trust you, right? I wasn't worried about you doing anything bad when you were sneaking out, you idiot," he whispered.

Tony turned towards him, a surprised look on his face. Then a bright smile lit up his face.

Feeling himself grin widely, Bucky leaned in for a kiss.

They were interrupted by the door suddenly opening.

A child, barely tall enough to reach the doorknob, was stumbling towards Tony, a huge grin on her face.

Before she could let out what was obviously going to be an excited shout, Tony shushed her and picked her up.

"Heeey, shh. What are you doing up?" Tony obviously knew her, poking her playfully until she giggled. He started to walk towards one of the hallways.

"Can't sleep, need to science," the girl said earnestly.

Bucky carefully put the baby back into her bed, before he followed Tony out. He watched as Tony carried the girl into a room with a few more beds, took away a flashlight and a book from her and tucked her in.

She looked at Tony with huge eyes. "But I can tell you about all the dinosaurs I learned soon, right?" she mumbled, her eyelids already beginning to droop.

"Sure," Tony whispered and tucked a strand of hair out of her face.

Moments later, she was asleep.

Tony smiled down fondly.

Bucky kneeled down next to Tony, linking their fingers together.

"She's a great kid. So smart, but a troublemaker." Tony said, still looking at her. The expression on his face could be almost described as longing.

Bucky looked between them for a moment, then grinned at Tony. His heart was beating fast and he had to take a calming breath to sound casual. "Could one day be our kid, hm?"

Tony's head swivelled towards him. "What? Really?" he asked in a hushed voice.

Bucky shrugged. "I don't know. You tell me, Mr. Futurist."

A tiny smile formed on Tony's lips. He held Bucky's gaze and smirked. "Yeah. Could be."