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Intern Kevin stood up just enough to peer over the edge of his cubicle, sneaking a look at the VP for Public Affairs’ office. The blinds were still drawn. “How long have they been in there?”

Julie kicked her feet up onto his desk. “Why are you whispering?”

“I don’t know,” Intern Kevin said. “It feels like I should be whispering. Are we in trouble?”

“We’re not in trouble. You identified a viral marketing opportunity, you brought it to me, and I kicked it up the chain for approval. That’s exactly what we’re supposed to do.”

“I only saw it because I was looking at my personal phone during work hours,” Intern Kevin said, even more quietly. “Do you think Sara knows I saw it on my phone?”

“How would she know?”

“I don’t know, doesn’t IT have safe search on all the machines or something? Can you even see those tweets on a work computer?”

Julie paused, then lowered her feet off the desk so she could grab his mouse and keyboard. She opened Twitter and typed “supersoldier fuckability index” into the search, but Intern Kevin grabbed the keyboard before she could hit enter.

“You can’t do a search for ‘fuckability’ from a work computer!” he hissed. “IT will totally flag that.”

“You really did watch all two hours of the computer policy HR videos, didn’t you?” Julie feinted left, then smacked the keyboard out of Intern Kevin’s grip with her other hand. By the time she picked it up off the floor, the search had completed with the term “supersoldier ****ability indexe5drutfgkyubhjk”, with the last word helpfully auto-corrected to “index.”


the notorious JBB @BuckyBarnes
barely lasted thirty seconds. nearly bit Steve’s ******* when the frame cracked down the middle while my tongue was halfway up his ***. whole **** thing’s made of particle board. 1 out of 5 ***** given http://ikea.com/bedr...


the notorious JBB @BuckyBarnes
you’d think a metal frame would be sturdier. you would be wrong. five minutes of thrusting and the ******* bolts managed to unscrew themselves on one side and tip us off. five minutes still better than previous best time, so 3 out of 5 ***** given http://ikea.com/bedr...


the notorious JBB @BuckyBarnes
the leg bolts tore out of the wood right when I was about to *** in Steve’s mouth. technically that makes it the sturdiest model yet, but I’m taking off points because after the bed broke I fell on my *** and Steve was laughing too hard to finish the job. 2 out of 5 ***** http://ikea.com/bedr...

 

A banner at the top of the page informed them that the page contained content that had been censored as inappropriate for the workplace, and that Information Technology reserved the right to review their internet usage.

Intern Kevin groaned and slumped down onto the floor, splaying his gangly legs in between the roller chair and the filing cabinet. “I am so getting fired.”

 


 

“Tom,” Sara the Senior Marketing Associate said levelly, “if you don’t let me promote our bedroom product line using the Winter Soldier’s tweet reviews, I will quit. I will quit today. I will leave you high and dry with a junior marketing associate and an intern, Tom. The intern just started last week. He doesn’t even know how to work the copier yet.”

The VP for Public Affairs rubbed his temples. “Sara.”

She slapped a piece of paper onto his desk. “I already wrote my letter of resignation. You know what it says? It says that I cannot possibly do my job if I’m deprived of the best free publicity opportunity that has ever crossed my desk, and that will ever cross it again, in the form of one James Buchanan Barnes and his Supersoldier Fuckability Index.”

“Stockholm won’t like it.”

“With all due respect, Stockholm can suck my dick.”

Sara.”

Tom.”

“It’s not just the language,” although it was partly the language, the VP hadn’t even recognized some of the words Barnes had used in his tweets, “it’s that he’s the Winter Soldier. There’s going to be a backlash.”

“And once people come after us, Captain America will come after them. You want to take a wild guess about who’s going to win that fight? I will bet you my entire Christmas bonus that Steve Rogers comes out on top. And there’s no escaping this. The damage is done, those tweets are viral, and I’ve already gotten calls from five reporters asking if we have a comment. Sooner or later someone’s going to get us on record, and if we don’t control the narrative on this, someone’s going to bring it up in a fucking shareholder’s meeting. Is that what you want, Tom?”

The VP for Public Affairs resigned himself to a very uncomfortable call with the Executive Board in the near future. “References to the tweets only, no retweets, links, or excerpts. Keep our own copy clean. And use it as a way to remind people about our generous return policy, Dana’s been on my ass to promote that more.”

“Budget for sending them free samples?”

“Go nuts,” the VP sighed. “The budget is not what I’m worried about.”

“You won’t regret this, Tom,” Sara said, serene in the face of victory.

“I’ll just shred this like all the others, shall I?” the VP said, dangling her letter of resignation from two fingers.

“Whatever you think is best, boss.”


IKEA America @IKEA_America
.@BuckyBarnes Sorry to hear you’ve had such poor luck with our products! If you’d like to help us test how they stand up to super soldier strength, we’ll send you our whole bedroom line. We appreciate your business ;)


the notorious JBB @BuckyBarnes
hey @SteveRogers, pick up another bottle of lube while you’re out, we’re going to need it

 

IKEA America @IKEA_America
.@BuckyBarnes Sorry to hear you’ve had such poor luck with our products! If you’d like to help us test how they stand up to supersoldier strength, we’ll send you our whole bedroom line. We appreciate your business ;)

 

The VP watched, with deep resignation, as both tweets hit a thousand reblogs within the first fifteen minutes of being posted. “I am so getting fired.”