'Expectation is the root of all heartache'
- William Shakespeare
Bucky poured himself another glass of wine, filling it right to the brim, and took a long drink.
He smacked his lips in consideration. Not a bad red. He had chosen a good one.
Of course, it should've been paired with dinner.
Bucky took the bottle and the glass, and wandered through to the living room, bypassing the dining table that was set for two with a single red rose at the center. He tucked the wine bottle under his arm, then licked his thumb and forefinger to extinguish the candles.
He may have relished in the brief flash of pain just a bit, imagining he was snuffing out his errant husband and not just some candles.
"First Valentine's married," Bucky muttered to himself, feeling annoyed.
He went to the couch, placing his wine carefully on the coffee table, then grabbed the TV remote and flopped down into the soft cushions.
Another Valentine's alone, Bucky thought.
Honestly, why was he even surprised? He knew all about the long hours Steve put in even before they'd gotten married. Steve was an honest and hard working police detective who fought for justice in every single one of his cases.
But that didn't make Bucky feel any better right now.
He'd just thought that being married would mean spending Valentine's day with his husband. Bucky sighed. He poured himself more wine, and settled in for an evening by himself.
That big blond jerk would have some serious grovelling to do when he got home.
After drinking the entire bottle of wine and watching far too much reality TV, Bucky took himself upstairs and got undressed, then poured himself into bed and laid his head on Steve's pillow because it smelled like him.
Bucky dozed, but kept waking up wondering if Steve was home yet, only to see the other side of their huge bed was still empty.
Bucky had already called the squad room earlier, and was told by the sergeant that Steve and his partner, Sam, were dealing with a double homicide, and that they were fine but working overtime.
Bucky had admittedly been a little drunk when he'd grumbled a reply that, actually, Steve would not be fine when he got home, because he was super pissed off. Then he'd hung up on her.
Bucky knew he had better apologise to Hill in the morning. The sergeant had heard his grumbles about Steve working overtime before, and would no doubt hear them again. She should stop approving all the extra hours Steve did, and maybe Bucky would stop complaining.
He dozed, then woke again when he felt the bed dip heavily, and a warm, solid body spoon up against him.
Bucky grunted in acknowledgement.
Steve was home, at last.
"Fucking steak, Rogers," he muttered, refusing to roll over and greet his husband. He was still pretty mad.
"Yeah, I saw," Steve replied softly. He moved Bucky's long hair aside, and pressed a soft kiss to the back of his neck. "I didn't know you were making dinner, sweetheart. I'm sorry."
Bucky exhaled, and felt his anger start to ebb away now that Steve was here and cuddling up to him.
Steve was safe. That was all that mattered.
Still, Bucky figured he had a right to feel pissy about it.
"The definition of a surprise," he pointed out, "is that you don't know about it." He rolled back a little in order to look at his husband. "You said you would be home early, Rogers."
"Yeah." Steve winced. "See, there was a bit of an emergency, and we--"
"I don't care," Bucky interrupted. "You're in the dog house."
Steve gave him a sheepish smile. "I figured as much. How many blow jobs will it take?"
Bucky burst out laughing. "Shut up, Steve. You owe me a Goddamn cooked dinner, for starters."
"I can do that too." Steve settled in on his side, and laid an arm across Bucky's chest possessively. "Figure I'll make you breakfast in the morning to soak up all that wine you've had to yourself."
Bucky snickered, then leaned in to burrow his face into Steve's chest and his magnificent pecs. He breathed in his husband's familiar smell, closing his eyes in bliss.
"I, uh. I have a week off work too," Steve said hesitantly. "So we can do whatever you want. I can fix the sink in the bathroom like you wanted?"
Bucky could detect bullshit a mile off, and he raised his head to fix Steve with a look. "What did you do?"
"Nothing!" Steve tried, but when Bucky merely raised an eyebrow, he cracked. "I may have... punched someone? Just a little bit..."
"Who?" Bucky demanded.
"Um... some jerk from Vice." Steve smiled nervously. "But they jeopardized our entire murder case, and were real assholes to the victim's family, and--"
"Steve." Bucky exhaled heavily. "Steve. Just stop punching people, especially other cops, and we'll deal with it in the morning. And, you owe me at least ten blow jobs for this."
Steve laughed, and leaned in to plant several kisses along Bucky's jawline. "Now?"
Bucky snorted a laugh. "No, unfortunately I'm way too drunk, and I want to go to back to sleep."
"Well, that's just great, Barnes." Steve poked him in the ribs, exactly where he knew Bucky was ticklish, and Bucky cackled out loud.
"Happy Valentine's, babe," Steve told him, and kissed him on the cheek.
By morning, Bucky had a raging hangover and felt all kinds of queasy.
Fucking red wine.
He pulled on his comfy dressing gown and stumbled downstairs, where Steve was in the kitchen frying up breakfast food. He turned to smile at Bucky as he made his way into the kitchen.
That smile turned into a shit-eating grin when he saw how badly hungover Bucky was.
"Good morning, sleepyhead," Steve said cheerily.
"Screw you," Bucky grumbled, pulling up a chair then wincing at the noise it made on the floor. "Ow. My head." He sat down, rubbed his hands over his face and groaned.
Steve came over, set a glass of water and some Tylenol down in front of him. "Take these," he instructed.
As Bucky downed two painkillers with the water, he remembered that Steve was still in the dog house. He was about to open his mouth to say as much, when
Steve brought over a huge plate of pancakes and set it down in front of him.
The top pancake had a bacon rasher for a mouth, two poached eggs for eyes, making it into a silly, smiley face.
Bucky broke into a grin. "You're a dork, Steven."
"But I'm your dork." Steve pointed the spatula at him and winked. "And you're stuck with me. Happy Valentine's!"