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Cards Against Certain Avengers

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If he'd ever really thought about it before The Incident, Clint would have said that Steve's reaction to Cards Against Humanity would have been somewhere between wary confusion and outright horror. He's Captain America; he's Truth, Justice, and Apple Pie. Clint knows the guy isn't as innocent as Fox News makes him out to be, but Cards Against Humanity is mostly about showing everyone else what a terrible person you are. Not exactly Captain America material.

As it turns out, Steve is in possession of one of the most fucked-up senses of humor of anyone Clint has ever met, and that puts him at the top of a long, long list.

"Maybe she's born with it. Maybe it's ______," Bruce says aloud as he puts the black card down. He's their permanent Card God; everyone is in agreement that it works a lot better for everyone that way. Clint frowns at his hand and plays a gassy antelope; not his strongest effort, but at least it won't make Bruce take a point away. Sometimes Clint wishes he hadn't come up with the Lame Rule, but he knows better than to try to take it back now.

"Old-people smell," Bruce reads after he shuffles the cards. Natasha snorts and elbows Steve, who rolls his eyes.

"Thor's older than I am," he says, which is his standard reply to old person jokes. "I'm only 95."

"You're a regular spring chicken," Tony interjects. "C'mon, Banner, read the rest of the cards."

Bruce reads Clint's gassy antelope next, and then they get homeless people and leprosy, which makes everyone make horrified faces. Bruce doesn't even hesitate before picking leprosy up as the winner, and Steve smiles widely as he gives himself a point.

"Wait, what?" Clint demands. "That was you?"

"That was me," Steve affirms. "Were you the homeless people or the gassy antelope? I figured you'd make a smell joke."

"I was the homeless people," Tony volunteers. "You seriously made a leprosy joke. I'm amazed. I truly am."

Steve shrugs. "Point to me. Let's keep playing."

The next card is Why am I sticky? and Clint slaps down his Peeing a little bit card. Good deal.

Bruce stares at the cards for a moment before shaking his head. "I'm torn between 'Poor life choices' and 'Grandma'," he says. "Sorry to whoever's peeing a lot and whoever thinks goblins are sticky."

Natasha snickers and elbows Steve again. "You and me, Rogers. I always win. It's nice to have a little competition."

"You're going down," Steve says, grinning at her. "I play to win, Romanoff."

"I'm going with 'Grandma'," Bruce cuts in.

Steve marks another point on his tally sheet.

Clint can only stare.

Natasha gets a point in round three (Alternative medicine is now embracing the curative powers of Lance Armstrong's missing testicle) and Tony wins round four (What don't you want to find in your Kung Pao chicken? Surprise sex), but Clint is still at zero when Steve takes control of the game again in round five.

"That's right, I killed 'Robert Downey, Jr.'. How, you ask?" Bruce makes a face. "Testicular torsion."

"Ahhh," Tony and Clint yelp in unison. Clint manages to not grab for his junk, but Tony doesn’t even hesitate.

Steve cracks up. "Y'know, Tony, you even kind of look like him," he wheezes. "Shave your face, maybe, but the resemblance is almost uncanny."

"You are not a nice person," Tony says, curling over a little as if to protect himself from Steve's warped sense of humor. "Stay away from the family jewels, Rogers."

"Keep them in your pants and we won't have a problem," Steve says, smiling as he gives himself another point.

"I'm not sure I want to keep playing," Clint mutters to Tony. "Let the two of them fight it out."

"You're not kidding," Tony mutters back. "Except that quitting is for quitters, and I'm not a quitter."

Clint glances to Natasha for help, but she just smirks and plays her next card.

Thankfully, Bruce plays What are my parents hiding from me? and Clint has been holding German dungeon porn since the start of the game, so he finally gets a point. They draw new cards after that, and Clint wants to whimper a little when Steve reads his cards and starts laughing again.

"Captain America is a terrible person, pass it on," Clint says when Steve wins the next round (When I am President of the United States, I will create the Department of not giving a shit about the Third World). "Let the world know."

"Hey, I can't help that I've got a winning spirit," Steve says. "It helps in all situations: Hydra bases, world wars, card games…"

"You could stand to lose every now and again," Tony says. "Might teach you a little humility."

Natasha throws her head back and laughs, and it doesn't take long for the rest of them to join her, Tony included. "You walked right into that one," Clint says when he can speak again. "I mean, wow."

"Yeah, okay, I earned that," Tony says, grinning. "What awful thing are we making up next?"

"And the Academy Award for blank goes to blank," Bruce reads. Natasha starts laughing before Bruce finishes reading the card and hands him her two white cards before Clint has even decided on one of his own. Bruce starts snickering as soon as he takes him, which means it's either a science joke or something terrible and political, but either way it's a lost cause. Clint pulls a bucket of fish heads and spontaneous human combustion from his pile just to get rid of them and sits back to wait for Natasha's masterpiece.

"And the Academy Award for friendly fire goes to Dick Cheney," Bruce says, and there's a moment of silence before Tony starts laughing so hard he has to lean over and rest his head on the table. Natasha bows when Clint starts clapping.

"He was the last vice president," Clint says to Steve. "There was this whole thing with-"

"Got it," Steve says, holding up his smartphone. Apparently he Googled "Dick Cheney friendly fire" while the rest of them were laughing. "Nice one, Nat."

"That's two for me, four for you," she says. "There's still time."

Clint shakes his head. "I'm out," he says. "I want no part of your bloodbath."

"You want to take video, you mean," Tony says.

"Well, Sam and Thor aren't here," Clint says reasonably. "Someone has to record this for posterity."

"Use my phone," Tony says, flipping the monstrosity he has the nerve to call portable at Clint's face. "I'm on 6G. It'll upload faster than you can actually take the video."

"6G," Clint mumbles while he looks for the camera app. "That's not a thing."

"Totally a thing," Tony says, turning back to the game. "Let's do this."

Tony's clearly pleased with himself for winning the next round (It's a pity that kids these days are all getting involved with anal beads), but Natasha wins after that (What's that sound? The female orgasm) and smirks about it until Steve plays the combination that makes even Tony wince (A Ferris wheel rolling towards the sea is basically a windmill full of corpses).

"Okay, I think we might need to bring this one to a close," Tony says, tossing his cards onto the table. "Haiku?"

"Not yet," Natasha relies, narrowing her eyes at Steve. "Where's the blank card? Play the blank card."

Bruce hesitates. "Are you sure that's a good idea?"

"Sure, play it," Steve says, nodding.

"Here goes nothing," Bruce says, putting the "_____ + _____ = _____" card on the table. Natasha slaps three cards down almost immediately, but Steve takes his time before sliding his across the table to Bruce.

Bruce looks from one set to the other, staring at each for longer than it would possibly take him to read the cards he's holding. Finally, he shakes his head and lays down the set in his right hand. "Bill Nye the Science Guy + science = The Force," he says. "It gets points, Steve, because I like the reference, but I have to go with Natasha on this one."

Bruce sets the other collection of cards on the table, and Clint starts laughing before he even finishes reading them. "Getting naked and watching Nickelodeon + Stephen Hawking talking dirty = a really disappointing birthday party," he wheezes out after a minute. "Nat, I don't know if I should clap or run."

"Clap while running," Tony advises. "Or, better yet, run away, then use the phone to video yourself clapping, and send it to her through the bounce program. Untraceable, unless you're me." He narrows his eyes. "Scratch that, give me my phone back. I'm using that plan."

"No," Clint says, holding Tony's phone to his chest. "Get a new one. This one's mine now."

"Archers," Tony says, annoyed, probably because one time he'd said SHIELD agents in that tone of voice, and he's still finding the little plastic spiders Natasha had hidden in… everything.

"Okay, haiku," Bruce says, clearly interrupting because Tony getting amped up about things makes Bruce stress, which is nobody's idea of a good time. "You guys are tied. This is for the win." He lays "Make a haiku" on the table, and it's like a switch was thrown. Things are never this quiet with so many Avengers in one room, but this game is for all the marbles. Natasha might actually be unseated as ruler of the game.

After a few moments of studying their cards, Steve and Natasha both nod to Bruce. Clint hasn't seen him this nervous since the last time he un-Hulked in the middle of Central Park and nobody had emergency pants for him. "Okay," he says. "Tell everyone your title, and then read your cards in order."

"Do we thumb wrestle for who goes first?" Steve asks.

Natasha snorts. "I go first. I'm calling it Sad Truths Revealed." She clears her throat dramatically before starting to read, laying each card on the table as she finishes it. "Being a busy adult with many important things to do/The harsh light of day/Wil Wheaton crashing an actual spaceship."

Tony boos. "He would never," he protests. "Wil Wheaton knows his shit, okay."

"Tony hasn't seen the harsh light of day yet," Clint fake-whispers. "He's in denial."

"Deny this," Tony mutters, but they're all looking at Steve now. He's smiling a little serenely, which is making every single one of Clint's internal alarms screech.

"Well, that's a good one, Nat," he says, nodding at her. "I'm calling mine Things I Know More About Now That I'm Grown."

"Oh, God," Clint says.

Steve keeps smiling. "The Great Depression," he starts, laying the card down. "The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr." He pauses, clearly for dramatic effect, and lays his last card. "Dental dams."

There's an honest to god moment of silence before Tony chokes. "Did you just make a sex joke?"

Steve blinks. "Did I? Oh, gosh, Tony. Did I offend your delicate sensibilities?"

That's it; that's literally the last straw. Clint starts laughing, leaning back in his seat so he doesn't have to worry about shit like falling onto the floor. Steve somehow keeps the smile on his face even when Natasha and Bruce lose it, too. Tony is still sort of gaping like a fish, which make Clint want to find out how to laugh even harder.

"Clint, can I borrow Tony's phone from you?" Steve asks. Clint nods jerkily, and Steve grabs it and snaps a picture of Tony's flabbergasted face, sending it to someone quickly before putting the phone back down. He raises an eyebrow at Tony. "You didn't actually invent sex, y'know. It was around in the forties."

"I know, but," Tony says, gesturing a little helplessly. "I'm the sex jokes guy. Occasionally Barton's the sex jokes guy. You? You are not the sex jokes guy!"

"I can be the sex jokes guy," Steve protests. "Want to hear a dirty joke?"

"No," Tony yelps. "No, Rogers, I do not want to hear a dirty joke. Clean jokes only."

"I know one about soap," Steve says thoughtfully.

"Oh my God," Tony says, standing up and heading for the door. "No. You were friends with my father. You don't get to tell me soap jokes."

"But they're clean!" Steve calls after him, finally grinning like a lunatic when Tony slams the door behind himself.

"This is the best day of my life," Clint says, wiping at his eyes. "That was amazing. I'm keeping this phone forever, by the way. Stark's not getting it back."

"Good," Natasha says. "It'd be a shame if he deleted that picture Steve took."

"Why?" Steve asks. "I mean, I texted it to everybody. We've all got copies now."

Natasha stares for a minute, a smile creeping across her face. "Rogers, I don't even care what Bruce's ruling is at this point. You win."

"He wins," Bruce adds. "I'm glad we're all in agreement."

"Oh, excellent," Steve says, standing up and grinning deviously as he heads for the door. "I'm gonna find Tony and let him know. He'll be thrilled for me, I'm sure."

"Best day of my life," Clint repeats as he starts laughing again.