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Agent of Hope

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Groaning at the bright morning light, it’s with a certain misguided aim that you reach out to turn of the alarm clock. You don’t normally hate mornings, but it’s hard to find joy when you’ve had nightmares for the third night in a row (not to mention the migraine that comes with them). The other side of the bed is woefully deserted, the sheets already cool to the touch which means Brock’s already up and about.

”Rough night, huh?”  his coarse voice comes from the doorway.

There’s no reason to hide it…nor explain it. ”Just need to get started…” you rasp back, reaching for the bottle of water, ”or maybe there’s a handsome fellow who’s willing to either rub or crush my skull.”

His laughter is jarring, but you hide the displeasure because you know it’ll annoy him. He’s the kind that believes in working through everything, that pain builds strength of character. My character’s fucking thicc. Of course Brock had urged you to go to the doctor and agreed with the sensibility in getting some scans done, but when the specialists didn’t find anything wrong, your boyfriend began to dismiss the pain. The nightmares are harder to ignore, but dreams are, well, just dreams.

”Ain’t got time for finger-magic, sweetie, but there’s coffee and eggs ready for ya.”

When he kisses you goodbye, it’s passionate. Loving. He might forget that not all are like him, but the man loves you. And still, as soon as the kiss is over, he slips effortlessly into the mental state of an agent who’s putting the final touches on a big project, and the man that walks out the door isn’t your man.

 

…   Days later   …

 

With the deadline nearing, Brock puts in a lot of extra hours at work. You miss him. Being an agent takes up a lot of time, obviously, and his entire life has brought him to this point in his career. Maybe it’s pitiful to admit that you’re second (a lot of your friends seem to think so), but it works for the two of you because there’s never been any pretence otherwise. At least it leaves you free to pursue your own dreams as long as they don’t involve kids or a man that is home at a set time.

“How was ya day, princess?” Strong arms wrap around you together with a sweaty musk that overpowers the dinner you’re putting together.

You have to twist to find his chapped lips with yours and get lost in the warm, hungry kiss. Damn, he can work wonders. Simply Brock’s presence is full of energy, happiness, and there’s no one who could make you feel as safe.

“Not bad, and I finally got the answer from R.E.” Customer’s can be slow and more than often the more prestigious they are, the worse they treat you or your employees…especially the women.

Brock’s dark brows nearly covers his eyes as he tries to think. “The…Rand?” You nod in confirmation. “Ya’d think they wouldn’t even bother to check anything before signing the check.”

“I’m sure they didn’t. It’s a powerplay to remind me who’s in control. Don’t they teach you that at agent school?” Poking him teasingly in the belly (or on, due to the rather spectacular abs), it surprises you that he doesn’t quip back.

A wet sputter behind you alerts you to the pasta and you finish the rest of the cooking while listening to Brock bragging about how smoothly the project is going. He calls it the “change” and sometimes “reveal”, anything more substantial is confidential. Of course and agency like SHIELD wouldn’t have any plans leaking prematurely no matter how stoked the involved parties are.

“This is it, baby!” Brock’s lying naked in the bed after a needed evening shower. “This whole thing’s been on the way for decades and I fucking get to be’ere for it!”

“Of course.” A kiss goodnight before you cuddle up against his perfect shape. “You won’t let anything stop you from reaching your goals.”

“Damn straight.”

 

…   Days later   …

 

Even though the footage is pixelated due to the distance of the camera, your heart still plummets just like the enormous flying hangar-ships falling in slow motion like leaves from a tree. You’ve barely seen your boyfriend the last couple of days, but you know he’s there, fighting to keep the plan on track despite of those actively working against it. Captain America. That part hasn’t been cited  on the news with a valid source, of course, just like there’s no explanation of what the three vessels are for. But you know. Night upon night, nightmares and agony have warned of today’s events. Death and destruction under two different circumstances, and regardless of the horrors playing out on the TV screen this is the lesser of two evils.

Not a single soul at the studio is working, their attention glued to screens of various sort just like you. Some are sitting alone in shock while others have huddled up…a few have gone to the rooftop to see the looming cloud of smoke and dust in the distance. You don’t know how the nightmares can be coming true, but they are.

Stabbing pain penetrates you skull, causing the view of the office to be replaced by a white, spinning fog. You feel yourself tumble from the chair, the desk only breaking your fault partially on your way to the floor. Body shaking and breath stuck in your throat, there’s nothing you can do except clutch your head until the moment passes in a blur of images. This…this is it. Brock’s project, the hangars delivering death from above. Pieces are added to the puzzle, some fitting with what you already know in an obscure way and others showing you new scenes. A hospital. Brock seething with hate as he points a weapon at…you.

You wouldn’t be able to explain any of this to another soul and, frankly, you’re not sure you can explain it to yourself. All you know as the pain subsides, is that the “change” is a synonym for “hostile takeover” (a term you’ve learned from Brock) which would have been the first step towards a dictatorship.

Shaking and sweating like a horse, you reach for the metallic trashcan that’s supposed to be the only occupant under the desk. The excruciating pain’s lifting, leaving a dull ache and a nasty bout of nausea behind. Already, your mouth’s filling with spit in anticipation of what’s to happen.