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Down the Rabbit Hole

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Steve and his team needed somewhere to hide. They needed someone they could trust would have no ulterior motives in helping them and had experience. There were two people that instantly flew to mind. “We need to go to Texas, Fort Davis,” Steve stated to Clint who was driving the quinjet; there were only four people who knew about this safe house, the people who lived there, Steve and Sam.

“I’m not sure they will be happy that we bring this fight to their door,” Sam whispered to him and Steve had to agree but they didn’t have much of a choice.

“It’s only temporary and they won’t have to fight,” Steve reassured himself under his breath but knowing his friend like he did, he would not be able to sit by.

 

Fort Davis was a small town in the middle of nowhere. And Clint was sure that Cap had given him the wrong place when they tucked the quinjet into a canyon and turned on the shields. “You have the strangest friends Cap,” Clint sighed, Steve didn’t offer any defence.

“We haven’t talked in a while. I’ve been busy so hopefully they don’t turn us away,” Steve shrugged which didn’t instil confidence in the team. As expected the town itself was dead silent and the house they arrived at didn’t look like a SHIELD issue safe house; it looked like the kind of house that Clint’s family lived in. The gardens were meticulously maintained with half being just short grass and the other half a flourishing vegetable garden. The fence was half way through being painted but everything else looked new.

“Your friends aren’t SHIELD are they?” Natasha asked and Steve nodded.

“They are hiding from SHIELD, HYDRA, the US government, anyone who would want to disrupt their lives,” he knew he would have to explain soon from the curious looks Sam, Bucky, Wanda, and Natasha were all sending him but if the two homeowners didn’t want them there then he would never reveal their identities. Knocking on the door, Steve kept the others back and without thinking looked for traps. It didn’t seem like there were but he was out of practice. The door flew open and Steve found himself with a gun shoved in his gut and a knife to his neck. Natasha, Bucky, and Clint drew their weapons but Steve wasn’t scared. Napoleon Solo stared up at him with a steely glare, until he recognised the visitor and broke out into a grin. “It’s Steve peril, and he’s brought friends! You can put the rifle away,” he shouted back into the house. Muttering and the clicking of a weapon was the only inclination that there was someone aiming a rifle at them from the upstairs window. It retreated back inside but Steve got the feeling that Illya was annoyed he hadn’t been able to shoot any intruders today.

 

Clint was confused; actually confused was an understatement. No one should be able to pull a weapon on a supersoldier that quickly and try to snipe SHIELDs best agents without them noticing. Steve had said this duo weren’t SHIELD and any SHIELD assets had been exposed in the data dump. It all didn’t add up. “Come in all of you. I’ll put the kettle on and we can catch up. I get the feeling a lot has happened since you last dropped by,” the American in the doorway stated, sheathing his weapons and heading back inside. The inside of the house was a lot more modern with expensive looking artwork and leather sofas; it still had the home comforts but a lot less of them than the quaint farmhouse looked like it should. “I’m sorry just to appear like this Napoleon but we had nowhere else to go,” Steve sat down on one of the settees prompting everyone else to.

“A bit more notice next time Captain. We were ready to bolt,” the new arrival was definitely not American. The Russian accent startled Natasha and she stared at the giant descending the stairs.

“We were not going to bolt, I like this place,” the shorter American argued, returning with tea for everyone.

“You liked New Mexico,” the Russian huffed and it was Clint who was startled now.

“You two were in New Mexico, when?” Clint asked and the Russian scoffed.

“When men and hammers fell from the sky,” the American rolled his eyes. “Now that wasn’t my fault was it. You wanted to stay in New Jersey even though Steve warned us HYDRA bunkers had been found there,” he sassed back, quietening the Russian. “How rude though, my name’s Napoleon Solo and this is my partner in love and crime Illya Kuryakin.” A cup dropped to the floor and shattered.

 

Bucky was shaking; Clint had never seen him like this before, not even when Zemo was trying to overwrite his mind. Steve went over to help but Illya had moved as stealthy as a panther and pushed him out of the way. “Let me Капитан,” Illya grimaced before kneeling in front of Bucky. “Дыши, их здесь нет. Только я, я и твои друзья. Я друг, потерянная душа, как ты. Дышать,” Clint felt lost now the language had swiched by Natasha’s frown was growing but she didn’t interrupt. Bucky struggled to try and get away from the new man. “это приказ, солдат!” he snarled and Bucky calmed and began breathing deeply.

“I’m sorry Illya, I didn’t know he would do that. We needed somewhere to hide and help his recovery and you were the only one I could think of,” Steve apologised but Illya shrugged it off.

“They will both be fine in a second. It’ll be hard to get your friend back but, I know it sounds strange, his reaction to Illya is a good thing. It means he doesn’t want to go back there,” Napoleon explained passing the now calmer Bucky and Illya new cups of tea.

“You’re one of them aren’t you,” Natasha asked, her voice quiet. All the colour had drained from her face and Clint was getting ready to catch her.

“Not for a long time,” Illya bluntly retorted and Napoleon should between them before something kicked off.

“I think we should explain, please take a seat,” Napoleon ran his fingers through his hair and sighed.

 

“Both Illya and I are the second generation of super soldiers behind Steve and Bucky. Once Steve went down into the ice the Americans managed to create something similar to the serum using his blood. They didn’t know the Russians had managed to make their own variation of the serum working with HYDRA. There’s was less effective than the original so didn’t increase the build of the subject that much,” all of the team apart from Steve and Bucky turned to stare at Illya. “Yeah he’s that tall naturally. Don’t question it. The same was for me as they couldn’t extract the whole serum. We were both volunteers to take the serum so no brainwashing was needed like for Bucky. It has kept us the same roughly the same age as when we took it and we are pretty much invincible,” the room was silent at the revelation.

“You said you were volunteers. When was this? And why were you offered the chance?” Clint questioned, it was like they were missing a piece of the puzzle.

“It was in 1944 for me, and 1948 for Illya,” Napoleon smiled and Clint’s jaw dropped.

“Did you two know each other then?” Wanda asked, gesturing between Steve and Napoleon.

“I was a new recruit, only sixteen at the time and was charged with keeping an eye on Captain American and making sure he stayed put,” Napoleon shrugged and Steve laughed.

“I’m guessing it didn’t go well,” Scott piped up and Napoleon nodded.

“Got it in one. Later that day, myself and Steve Rogers dropped out of a plane and rescued all the American soldiers held behind enemy lines including one James Buchanan Barnes.”

“I don’t remember you,” Bucky muttered and Napoleon’s smile softened.

“It’s okay Buck, I look different and you’ve been through a lot. You’ll get it back, I swear,” Napoleon squeezed Bucky’s shoulder and unexpectedly he didn’t automatically react violently. He just sat there. “But anyway, I joined the howling commandos with the Captain and when his ship went down they worked on creating another. I signed up without a moments hesitation and they thought it would be better to use it on someone who Steve had chosen,” Napoleon explained and let all the information settle in.

“And Ilya? And how did you meet?” Wanda eventually asked. There were so many questions surrounding the strange couple and Napoleon seemed free flowing with the answers.

“I think that’s a story for another day. We need to know more about what happened to all of you?” Napoleon deflected. Steve explained the whole situation with Tony and the accords. Illya stormed away mid way through the story but Napoleon remained listening with devout focus; his mind was whirring and filing away all the information for later use. It was a good skill for both a spy and a soldier to have.

 

Napoleon and Illya had offered their house for the fugitives to remain in as long as they needed and promised to help desensitise Bucky and help him regain control. There wasn’t much the two supersoldiers could do in the fight against the accords but they were going to help Steve find a base and set up the Secret Avengers. They wouldn’t fight though, that was the one thing they wouldn’t do. Never again.