Soulmates are beyond the comprehension of both the mind and the heart, but no matter who they are with, the words and feelings will have meaning.
That is irrefutable, as studies upon studies in the world have discovered. There’s no way to explain soulmates, just that it’s impossible to deny them.
Nearly everyone was born with the first words their soulmate will say to them somewhere on their body, no matter how old or young their soulmate is at the time, which means that everyone is predestined to meet their soulmate. However, even if they meet, most are not predestined to stay together, or even be romantically involved, some are meant to be friends, some meant to be business partners, some meant to be enemies. There are a few people who have more than one line of words scrawled on their skin somewhere.
The words appear on your skin a week before you are born (they can tell that now, ultrasounds are that good), and stay there in an inky black until you hear them say it, then it burns into your skin and turns white, like a scar.
Most people are excited to hear their words, and they try to use any hint their words provide them with a way to find their soulmate, and they hope that they are meant to be together forever, that is fairly common.
But there are also cases of people fearing their words being said to them because they don’t know if the words could be mean or cruel or are possibly just a slip of sarcasm or a joke, because the tone in which they are said is not provided, and wouldn’t that be so helpful? But alas, you don’t know until you hear it.
Clint Barton’s problem was the latter.
You must be joking. Was laid out in a nice script across the inside of his left arm. He knew it was possible that his soulmate had a dumb phrase on them somewhere that they dearly hoped was in fact, a joke, and that was what the result of Clint’s words were. So with that in mind he had made it a habit to say stupid shit all the time, perhaps as a defense mechanism, or a hopeless maneuver to scare people away or even to lure out the one person who may very well be the one person on the planet who will love him more than anyone else.
But so far nothing, and it had so far only led him to believe that it wasn’t going to happen and really in the end, that would be better because, despite his hope and posturing, he knew, somehow, deep down that the way the words on his arms were said were in disappointment.
Who would ever want to love him? Or be friends with him? Or even be his enemy? He wasn’t worth it.
He couldn’t help it, ever since he could remember he knew that those words doomed him, that they meant he was a disappointment, his father and then his brother had made it very clear to him that was the case, that no one wanted him, not even his soulmate. His mother tried, oh she tried, to make it better, to tell him that wasn’t the case, but he got the feeling that secretly she was already disappointed in him too. He supposed he’d never know.
But because of all this, he’d decided he’d not care when the words turned from black to white, he’d pretend like it didn’t happen, and so far, for the past thirty six years, they hadn’t, he figured his life had been so full of madness he wouldn’t meet his soulmate. And that would be just fine with him. That had happened sometimes, it wasn’t too often, but it did happen. Destiny got fucked up somewhere, that was something that one risked when everyone had free will. But Clint didn’t mind if that was the case for him. He knew he wouldn’t have to worry about being a disappointment, at the very least, because he already was one.
So he carried on, he learned to be the best possible marksman to ever live, at least when it came to archery, and then some other pretty useful skills too. He was a mercenary for a while and that was a time in his life that was rough and led him to really believe he was a monumental fuck up, at the time he’d embraced it, because what else could he do? But then he was with SHIELD, making a difference, trying to do good, for a while he’d been ok, but then he had fucked that up too hadn’t he, thanks to Loki? But then he was an Avenger to help make amends and it was all okay, and he no longer had an excuse...Right? But it was hard not to still feel that way when he was surrounded by the superpowered people with solid soulmate connections and geniuses with like five soulmates and it was just kind of hard not to think about it, but he did his best to ignore it. He shouldn’t complain, he’d lived a pretty good life all considering, he thought so at least, he was able to do things with his life and that mattered.
So he went about his life, fighting baddies alongside the Avengers, ignoring the ache that had settled deep in his bones after Barnes was recovered and Natasha had her Soulmate back and she wasn’t really around him as much as she used to be. But he couldn’t blame her, she hadn’t seen her man in a couple decades, and he was slowly recovering from the major mind fuck Hydra had put on him. So Clint mostly kept to himself to allow them time to reacquaint. It gave him time to watch the rest of the team from the shadows. Steve and Tony would dance around each other, the old routine of arguing and then making up to be squishy in love, and Tony and Bruce did SCIENCE™ because their science brodom was spiritual. And Sam and Steve had a bromance going on, though Clint wasn’t sure if that was down to a soulmark level. Though Steve and Bucky’s bestie status sure was, it was a bit insane how close they were, but they were purely platonic. And Thor had his people, apparently, it was normal for Asgardians to have dozens of phrases because they lived so long, they met so many people to connect with, so Thor was pretty busy too. Which more or less left Clint to his own devices when they weren’t all out being Avengers, he couldn’t help but feel like he was the odd man out with them even then, but he did his damnedest to ignore it.
Luckily the days they fought alongside each other were the least lonely for him because after the battle was won and they were all tired but in good moods as long as no one was seriously hurt which didn’t happen too often, they gathered around the TV and watched a movie while they ate and drank and were merry, and Clint was able to forget a little that he was alone.
He did get along with Bucky pretty well, seeing as they were both ex-brainwashed assassins and snipers. So when Nat and Bucky were feeling up for company he was welcome, but seeing them together, with gentle smiles and almost not quite intimate touches, Clint was reminded again how he hadn’t met his soulmate, even when everyone else he knew had, and this late in life, that usually meant he’d gone the wrong direction and he wasn’t going to meet them.
It was good, he supposed, they wouldn’t have to deal with him, maybe he could go find a dog and settle down that way...he liked dogs.
He still liked them even if currently there was one that looked kind of like a hellhound on his ass as he ran through the streets of New York to try and lose it even as it was nipping at his heels, and a gross green tongue of mist came out of its mouth to try and snag at his ankle. It was kind of terrifying, but he managed to jump away at the last second before it did whatever, it still left a gross sensation behind that made him run faster.
“Fuckfuckfuckfuckfuck,” he hissed, he was out of grappling hook arrows so was not able to get up high, not that it would help as the damn things that all of the Avengers were fighting could run up the sides of buildings, hence why he was on the street running for it, but he was only human, and he was going to tire eventually and oh look now there were three of them on his ass, and closing fast, which got some more swearing hissed frantically into the comms.
“ Having a hard time of it there, Hawkeye? ” Tony drawled, “ I didn’t realize you were so desperate. ”
“ Don’t be crude on the comms, ” Steve said sounding more resigned than upset about it.
Clint scowled, “Where are you?” He couldn’t hear the repulsors anywhere nearby.
“ Wow, you’re that desperate are you? ” Tony said, obviously ignoring Steve. “ I mean, I am in the suit… ”
“ Gross, ” Sam sighed.
“Are you just going to joke about my sex life or come and prevent me from getting mauled, asshole? I need some help here!” He snapped and spun around to fire a smoke bomb arrow to try and give himself some cover, using a few nearby footholds to parkour his way into the next street, shame they weren’t normal dogs and a few seconds later were on his ass again and closing.
“ What? No, you’re actually in trouble? ”
“ Yes, I’m in trouble! ” Clint snarled, they were only two feet away now, and he was slowing, “Jesus fucking fuck!”
“ Hey now- ”
“SHIT!” Clint cried as he turned down the wrong corner and it was a dead end, he turned around and pulled an arrow, the three hounds were now stalking towards him, eyes glowing a gross eerie green.
“Now would really be a great time for you to swoop in and actually help instead of pretending like you’re the only person saving the day like you usually do, Stark,” Clint said, pulling his bow back so his thumb was brushing his cheek, not even hearing Tony’s indignant reply. It was an explosive arrow, but at this distance, Clint would get caught in the blast too. Blasted to hell, or mauled by dogs from hell? It was a tough choice.
Clint’s world disappeared in a puff of smoke and the smell of brimstone and then reappeared again on a roof six blocks away from where he’d been.
“Fucking-!” Clint huffed and stepped forward in surprise his draw slackening now that there was nothing to shoot, then turned to see a fuzzy blue mutant grinning at him, “Jeez, a little warning, Wagner!”
“I did tell you to hold on,” he pointed out and Clint shook his head but couldn’t help but smile in relief at the sudden arrival of help.
“Hey circus freak, how’s it going?” he asked and Kurt beamed at him.
“Much better than you it seems, carnie trash~” he replied cheerfully and Clint laughed he stepped forward and squeezed Kurt’s arm who returned the gesture, “Are you alright?”
“Yeah, I’m fine, thanks to you…ah why are you here?” he asked and Kurt shrugged.
“Ve vere given an anonymous tip that the Avengers vere in need of some help,” he said and then nodded out at the city behind them, Clint turned and saw Jean and Cyclops, and Logan and Storm and Quicksilver and more, so many of the X-Men it was kind of crazy.
“You all came out for us?” he asked, usually it was just one or two of them, “Why? We don’t need that much help do we?”
“I do not really know, it vas the Professor, he said he got an anonymous tip from a reliable source, vhatever that means, that you vere all in serious trouble, though I am not sure vhy-” just then the earth gave a monstrous rumble and shit started to move, the buildings and streets rumbled apart, but thankfully not falling or collapsing, simply shifting, creating a huge split in the ground that started spilling a wave of the hellhounds and the green eerie smoke. “...ah.”
“Whelp.” Clint drawled.
“ X-Men checking in on Avenger’s frequency ,” Scott said over the comms, everyone checked in in an orderly fashion and it looked like they were going to be pretty well set. The X-Men and the Avengers had fought together several times before, though with fewer people than this time, but made a good team, and Clint had gotten to know most of them during their ‘after parties’ and of course during holidays when they got together for PR purposes, but in reality Clint and Logan tried to out drink Steve or Thor, or both, or Clint and Kurt talked about circuses and a lot of things, he sassed Peter and Scott, and was pretty decent friends with most of them, they were good people and great to work with.
“ We can hear you, X-Men and we’re grateful for the assistance, ” Steve replied, then was teased for being so formal. Ah this might be kind of fun, maybe.
Clint sighed, “Guess I won’t be getting back in time for the season finale of The Magicians,” he was already pulling out a few explosive arrows as he spoke.
“Tough luck, my friend,” Kurt said and Clint offered him a smirk then he pulled and let all three arrows fly, they landed in the middle of the rift and exploded a second later, several of the hellhounds went flying a few yelping, but a good majority of them went up in smoke.
“Thanks- oooh, I made them mad,” Clint sighed, “You might have to stick with me to save my ass,” he told Kurt who looked too amused to be bothered by that.
“I will do my best to vatch your ass,” he replied, his eyes glittering with amusement.
“Didjya hear that, Peter? Your soulmate likes to watch my butt,” Clint drawled over the comms.
“ He’s gotta look at somebody’s, mine’s too fast, ” Peter said and then he was next to them a second later and leaned back and obviously checked out Clint’s butt, “Eh, it’s not too bad.”
“I feel violated suddenly,” Clint said shaking his head and trying not to laugh.
“You’ll get over it, old man,” Peter said, then waggled silver eyebrows and shot off again.
“‘Old man’? You’re like twenty years older than me!” Clint called out after him, “Though none of you look it...is the x-gene like...an anti-aging gene…?”
“Only for Logan,” Kurt replied amused, “Shall ve move now? It appears the hounds are heading our vay and they appear vengeful.”
“Aaah...yeah,” Clint offered his hand and Kurt took it and BAMF’d them away again.
That was really how the battle carried out, Clint would shoot and help try to corral the beasts while the rest of the two teams tried to either make them smoke or shove them back in the rift, it was slow going and SHIELD ended up trying to help out too, it was so boring after a while and monotonous and way too many hours later they were able to leave it to SHIELD to monitor when it looked like nothing else was coming out of the rift and all of the hounds were gone or had been contained. They all headed back to Avengers Tower, the X-Men invited to stay the night so they didn’t have to go all the way back to Westchester that night, and were able to stay in the guest rooms after several big orders of Chinese and Indian and Pizza from the nearest places and a short little celebration that no one had gotten hurt and then everyone was off to bed, exhausted and ready to rest.
Clint was able to sleep for a few hours before the glowing green eyes of the hellhounds turned into blue and he woke with Loki’s laughter in his ear.
He ended up at the range, shooting quiver after quiver of arrows until he was once again exhausted, but unable to rest, he felt like his skin was itching, like it wasn’t right, like he didn’t belong in it. That was pretty normal, however, the edge to it tonight was enough to drive him to paranoia.
He thought he saw blue, and then green and then blue again at the corners of his eyes, it was enough for him to walk around the tower with his bow and quiver on, just in case, but all was quiet, JARVIS didn’t report anything, and no one else was awake as far as he could tell.
So everything was safe-
“ I remember doing the Time Warp~ ”
“Jesus!” Clint jumped a foot in the air as the song lyrics broke the quiet of the tower, he had to take several deep breaths to calm his racing heart before he reached into his back pocket and answered his damn phone.
“What?” he grouched.
“Ah, sorry to wake you Hawkeye,” an unfamiliar voice said, sounding very apologetic, “I’m Agent Carlton, and I was just trying to get ahold of someone from the Avengers but no one else has answered yet,” she sounded like a newb.
Clint grunted, “So?”
“Uh...well...we were just going to try and close the rift and we thought it best to have some backup, just in case,” she said, sounding even more unsure now.
Clint sighed and rubbed his face, “Alright, just give me a minute to get my shit then I’ll be there, give me thirty.”
“Yes, sir,” she said and hung up with what Clint assumed was relief, and then Clint sighed and went back to the range to grab another quiver, so he had two, both stuffed with arrows, explosive, incendiary, grappling, putty, boomerang, smoke bomb, sonic, electric, suction, net, he threw some of the acid arrows in there too because why not? And some extra cable and grappling ones, just in case. He was sure it was overkill but hey, if he was going to be the backup, he might as well be prepared, and on that thought added on a few of his knife sets too, garroting wire, and a stole a few of Natasha’s stings. He had on his complete uniform too, it looked like he was going to go kill someone, but truthfully, he just didn’t want any more of those damn dogs getting at him and he’d do his worst to make sure they didn’t get close enough to him again. They kind of freaked him out.
He also stole Steve’s bike, because take that for not waking up, jerk. Steve and Tony were probably curled around each other, warm and safe in each other’s arms, soulmates actually enjoying each others company-
Wow, negative nancy Clint, he really needed to sleep, he was a grump right now.
He’d sleep later, once this was done, hopefully, he’d just pass out and wouldn’t dream, that was really what he needed.
He arrived about ten minutes later, it was nice to have the Tower so close to where everything usually went to shit, he parked the bike and headed over to the group of people standing around some science and tech gadgets, he was too tired to really care.
He spotted Maria over in the thick of things, and wandered over to her, she glanced up.
“Barton? I was hoping for Stark or anyone-”
“Not useless?” he replied blandly, and she frowned at him.
“-with the ability to fly,” she finished, “You look like shit.” She told him and he shrugged.
“What’s new? They were all sleeping. Alright let’s do this, I have other things to shoot at, or whatever,” he waved his hand around and she sighed and then nodded.
“Might as well find a perch where you can see into the rift to see if anything is happening,” she said and he nodded, then pulled his bow off and shot up to one of the higher buildings and was able to rappel up.
It took the scientists a few more minutes to get sorted and then they gave the call to start, Clint kept his eyes on the rift, of which he had a good view, it was gaping and black, and Clint really wanted to be nowhere near it. He had a bad feeling being so close to it.
“ We’re about to start, ready Hawkeye? ”
“Yep, let’s do this.”
“ Alright, call out anything you see. ”
He pulled another arrow out and set it on the bow but didn’t pull the string, he kept watch on the rift instead, calling out anything he saw, which at first really wasn’t much. A few pieces of rubble would fall in and it would rumble from time to time, but that was about it.
Until about forty-five minutes later everything shook, and two spots of green appeared in the depths and slowly formed one of the hounds.
“Hound emerging, want me to shoot it?” he called, pulling his bow back in preparation.
“ Hold fire for just a moment longer, we want to conduct some tests, we’ll tell you when ,” one of the scientists replied.
“Holding,” he replied, watching the hound fiercely, it didn’t look like it was doing anything at first, but then it started sniffing, and only a moment later with a few turns of its head did narrow in on Clint, Clint knew this because the eerie green eyes were looking directly at him.
“What the...uh, guys, it knows where I am.”
“ What? ”
“The hound it’s looking right at- oh now it’s coming at me, and fast, sorry I don’t care about your science, I’m going to shoot it-”
“ No! This is the most readings we’ve had! Please! Just change positions and find cover until we’re done, ” the scientist begged.
Clint growled under his breath then put his piercing arrow back and pulled out a cable arrow, “Fine, but you better make it fast.”
“ We will, please, we just need ten minutes, ” she promised.
Clint growled a little and then shot to another building and swung around so he was behind it then up on the roof again, then he was able to peek out and try and see the hound again. It was still looking at him.
This time it was coming even faster at him.
“Yeah, that shit better take less than ten minutes, it’s still tracking me!” he called, pulling out the cable and shooting it at a building further away, intending to get downwind in case that was the issue, and then he could swing back around to check on it again only for him to come back and see...
“ It’s gone! ” one of the other agents replied just as Clint turned around.
“Yep, that’s because it’s behind me,” Clint replied, “You should have let me shoot it,” he grumbled and then he turned and ran to the edge of the building and jumped shooting an arrow to the building on the other side of the rift, except the arrow didn’t reach the other building, it looked like it got knocked out of the air by nothing and then started falling towards the rift, as was Clint.
“FUCKING SHIT!” he went to go pull another arrow out of his quiver except he felt something stop him from doing that, it felt like his bracer wasn’t moving and it felt like his quiver was pulling him down, and then he was falling faster and faster, and then he was falling through the rift and the blackness engulfed him, wrapping him in silence, even if it felt like he was moving faster than humanly possible and like his whole body was being unmade, and then what was forever and barely a second later he was in a cave stumbling, as if pushed, towards someone in a cape who seemed to hold out their arms on instinct, and then the world stopped moving so fast and he found he was still alive, and not being burned or crushed by the forces of gravity.
He blinked at the armored chest he was more or less pressed to then blinked again and looked up.
“Oh...wow, nice catch,” he breathed and he watched as the man’s eyebrows shot up over some pretty deep ‘doorway to the soul’ eyes, he opened his mouth and Clint was sort of too caught up with staring at him to think about it and then he said those words.
“ You must be joking .”
Clint felt the words on the inside of his wrist warm and then knew they were now white, instead of black and he was filled with more feeling than he knew what to do with and- oh.
“...oh,” he said aloud, still staring at the man, he had short brown hair and his eyes were so sad, it was like looking into the void and experiencing the most heart-wrenching thing imaginable and then doubling it. He wanted to say something, to let him know he didn’t have to feel like that because he was a disappointment, sure but he’d do anything to try and change that and he opened his mouth to say that but instead what came out was: “Sorry...I think I’m gonna be sick.”
That was enough for him to be let go and turn and in fact, get sick, but he had enough control to stumble over to a little nook in the rocks before letting go.
He gasped a bit and tried to pull himself together, but was having a hard time of it, he was so exhausted and everything was sore, he was shaking, and he wasn’t sure he’d be able to stand for much longer, but well...he did just meet his soulmate.
Wow Clint, great first impression, he really needed to try and make this better, because what the fuck, just his luck, where the hell even was he? Rocks, lots and lots of rocks. Helpful, he just needed to find out what was going on, and how he got here from a rift and maybe figure out why this was how he’d met his soulmate? Aside from the fact that his life sucked and well that was a good enough reason.
He turned back around and rubbed the back of his head, “Sorry about that...oh, hi,” he felt his cheeks go pink as he noticed there were, in fact, four other people there with them, “Shit...sorry, I guess that was a shitty first impression.”
“It is not first impressions that matter, it is what you do in life that gives others the right to judge you,” one of the others said stepping forward and Clint’s eyebrow arched, he was blue, well that wasn’t new, but the weird head thing on his armor with the tubes was, and there was a dude with metal wings, which was actually pretty cool, and then a chick with white hair and another that was in purple who looked suspiciously at him. He liked her color preference at least.
“Well...alright, thanks, I guess...so we can...scratch off the whole falling in looking like a mess and then getting sick thing? That’d be really great,” he said rubbing the back of his head.
“Who are you?” the blue man asked, “And why are you here?”
“Ah...Clint Barton, Hawkeye, and...um...I uh…” he glanced at the other man again who seemed to maybe be in shock?
“He’s here for me,” he said quietly, “He is my soulmate.”
“Uh...yeah...what he said,” Clint said weakly, feeling so far out of his depth he might drown on air, “And I don’t...really know how I got here, it involves creepy dogs with glowing green eyes chasing me into a black rift though...so…”
“Glowing green eyed dogs?” The man asked, his face twitching just slightly, and Clint took that as shock, he nodded in confirmation, “The Hounds of Fate…” the blue guy murmured, “You have been given a gift, my son,” he said stepping forward and addressing the other man, “It is a testament to what we are doing, Fate has brought to you your one true half to reward you for the work you are to do.”
The man turned and started to address the other people there with lots of flower superfluous language that made Clint want to start drooling a little, but instead he turned to look at his soulmate, he eyed him closely, trying to figure out who he was, if he knew him, maybe if he’d give him a clue as to what the fuck was happening. But his soulmate seemed to pointedly not be looking at him. Well, alright then.
He was so tired he wasn’t really able to ignore the hurt feeling at that, damn feelings getting so raw with tiredness, but he was able to push it aside to take in everything that was happening and use then wracked his brain for the knowledge he was sure he already had because honestly this seemed vaguely familiar and with that little hint he was able to come to a few conclusions; one of which was that he was pretty sure that the blue dude was Apocalypse, which was crazy, he’d been dead for more than three decades, he’d been in the SHIELD archives, Clint only knew of him vaguely because he’d looked into Mutant history once they had started working with the X-Men. And he noted that the whole deal with the super mutant had been very very messy. He barely remembered any of the details but he did know how it ended more or less and just that some pretty prominent mutants had been involved at the time, Kurt, Cyclops, Jean and Peter to name a few, and also Storm who now that he was remembering realized was the girl with white hair, she was so young, holy shit, this was crazy! What the actual fuck, was that really Storm? It didn’t make any sense, he’d literally just seen her less than eight hours ago, older and wiser and in a different costume. This didn’t make any sense. Was it really Apocalypse and a young Storm? Had he somehow fallen...into the past? That was madness. And stupid and totally made sense for his life because what the fuck? Had he seriously just been sent to the past to meet his soulmate? Who was obviously involved with Apocalypse.
His brain stalled for a second, there had only been four people involved with Apocalypse, now that he recalled. Storm, a mutant called Angel who- well he didn’t want to think it before it happened, the purple girl was Psylocke and-
Clint’s eyes widened and he looked at the man next to him.
“...huh, you’re Magneto,” he said casually because holy shit his soulmate was Magneto. His life was super fucked up and liked to kick him in the balls for good measure it seemed.
The other man finally looked back at him, his face guarded.
“Yes, I am,” he replied and seemed to expect some kind of bad reaction as he tensed, but Clint was honestly too tired beyond being able to acknowledge the fact.
“...good to know,” he replied evenly because what the fuck was he supposed to do about it, soulmates were for life, two people linked right down to their very souls, there were no exchanges or returns, even if one of them happened to be a notorious mass murderer. Clint would just have to deal, and besides he had a feeling he had something a bit more complicated to deal with at the moment, namely the old Egyptianan mutant planning on destroying the planet, so he didn’t mention the soulmate thing, instead, he gestured to where Apocalypse was preaching to the other... Horsemen? Yeah, them, “So...um...do you...believe everything he’s saying?”
Magneto looked away from him again, his face blank, “Why do you ask?”
“...because I don’t think you do,” Clint said honestly, looking down.
“Oh?” the man asked, and it was incredible how much tone he could put into that single syllable, it sounded like a warning almost, but Clint was never one for taking those, he was also tired beyond belief, so just kept talking even though it really wasn’t his place, despite Fate.
“I think you’re just in pain. I think you need something to fill the hole in your heart...so you’re clinging to something that you think will help,” he said his voice still quiet because good lord did he not want to be really heard by Blue Wonder, he’d be dead in a microsecond, soulmate or not.
“You don’t know me,” Magneto replied and Clint looked up then, compelled by something, his tiredness, yup, he was going to go with that.
“No...but I know your soul,” he replied looking him in the eyes again, “I know how much it hurts...to be left behind. But this...it’s not going to- Is that Xavier?”
He blinked at the corner of the rock formation, his voice raising at the end when he spotted the prone figure slumped in the wheelchair, “Holy shit it is, holy shit guys, holy shit.”
Everyone was looking at him as he walked over, “This is madness, I can’t believe I’m seeing this,” he gaped, “He has hair.”
The others, after tensing aggressively at his first words, seemed very confused at his second words. Clint was tempted to pull out his phone and get a selfie because holy shit, he never knew Xavier had hair! This was crazy! He was actually reaching for his phone when Apocalypse stepped forward, seeming to dismiss the outburst, as it wasn’t anything important.
“It is time my children to begin to bring our purpose to fruition, we will fight and we will raze all who oppose us to the ground we will prevail and bring about a new age of mutants!” he was very grandiose and it took all of Clint’s will not to make faces at his back, good thing too as a moment later he was addressed, “And you, will you fight with us?” he looked to Clint who pressed his lips together, good lord he was pretty sure he wasn’t supposed to, because it wasn’t in the history books, right? Because this happened in...1983? So...god he was three years old, soooo, yeah, definitely not, but...shit what other choice did he have?
He looked to Magneto and looked him straight in the eye, “I’d follow the people I’m loyal to straight into the jaws of death, whether they deserve it or not,” Holy shit he was tired if he was already making dumbass declarations. Maybe if he was lucky the rift would return and re-swallow him and send him to anywhere else. He was an idiot.
Magneto looked at him for a moment then back at Apocalypse and gave a minute nod, but didn’t say anything, he just had his lips pressed together.
Clint didn’t say anything more, because he didn’t need to make more of a fool of himself, maybe he’d already disappointed his soulmate, who was, by the way, Magneto, and it was likely all gonna go to hell anyway, and he really should stop thinking because obviously, that was all he was going to get, was he really that bad? Shit, he didn’t know, he’d tried. Clearly, he was not meant for this whole soulmate thing.
“You look like you are going to cry,” an accented voice said and Clint blinked and became aware of the white-haired girl, Storm, it was Storm, she was so young, and she had an accent, that was crazy, he had no idea she’d ever had one, and she was looking at him funny, oh right she’d spoken to him.
“O-oh, shit yeah, no, I’m not going to cry,” he laughed, “I might drop from exhaustion though,” he shook his head, “No worries, I was just in a fight earlier, and then couldn’t sleep and then had an adrenaline spike from falling through a rift in time...a bit tiring all that, don’t worry about it, I’ll be fine, thanks.”
“If that is so, you should not be fighting now,” she said frowning at him.
“I’ll be fine, don’t wor-”
“No,” Magneto said suddenly, “If you’re not fit to fight then you’ll just be a hindrance.”
“Wow, careful there it almost sounds like you care,” he muttered but ended up being loud enough the other man heard and gave him a sharp look. Clint went slightly pink, “I am perfectly capable of looking after myself. Honestly, I’ve been through worse, I’ll be fine, I just have to shoot at people right? It’s fine, it’s nothing I haven’t done before.”
Magneto turned to face him completely, “You’re going to stay here and not get involved. You’re useless like this, I don’t want to have to look after you.”
Clint opened his mouth to argue, but he didn’t get the chance because a soft touch on his arm from Apocalypse had him collapsing into unconsciousness.
To Be Continued...