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little talks

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“Bucky’s gonna stay the night,” Sam’s voice carries through the hallway to where Sarah is sitting in front of the television with a phone in her hands. She’s been scrolling the news mindlessly, taking that short time she can for herself. She looks up to Sam walking inside with a smile on his face.

It’s late but it’s been a good day, Sarah admits that. She’s not surprised that Sam has managed to do so much work with the boat already - when Sam sets his mind on something, it’s going to happen. Sarah has learned that by now.

“Okay,” she says, because of course Bucky can stay. When Bucky appears behind Sam, Sarah warns, “We don’t have a spare room, though.”

Bucky shrugs. “I’ll be okay on the couch, thank you.”

So polite. Sarah gives him a small smile and nods. “I like you, Bucky Barnes. So much more polite than my brother here.”

Bucky grins. “I try,” he says and Sam hits him gently, rolling his eyes.

“Liar,” Sam mutters.

Bucky snorts in a way that, to Sarah, sounds fond. “Don’t expose me in front of beautiful women, Samuel.”

Sam looks annoyed but there’s something in his eyes that Sarah hasn’t seen since Riley. Oh, it makes so much sense.

She’s been observing Sam and Bucky all day, working together. They move around each other like they’ve had years of practise, understanding each other in a way that Sarah feels like neither of them realise.

And even with what Sarah has heard from Bucky, she can see he cares about Sam. Hell, she knew it the minute Bucky offered to help Sam with the boat.

And now, now those two are staring at each other again. Having one of their silent conversations and eventually Sam nods towards his bedroom door and says, “Shower, you stink. There are towels in the dresser next to my bed.”

Bucky nods at Sam and then offers an awkward wave to Sarah before strutting towards Sam’s room. When he disappears behind the door, Sarah turns to look at Sam with a questioning eyebrow.

“So,” she starts, “you need to tell me everything about that.” She points a finger at the closed door and then at Sam. Sam shakes his head and walks to the kitchen to wash his hands.

“I have no idea what you are talking about,” Sam says.

Sarah lets out a disbelieving laugh. “Right, sure you don’t.”

Sam shrugs and then turns around to lean on the kitchen counter. “Sarah,” he says, “there’s nothing to talk about. There's nothing there.” 

Sarah rolls her eyes and sits down on one of the chairs. She’s not going to push, but she knows her brother. She doesn’t have to. 

Sam looks at her for a moment before continuing, “And even if there was, things are too much right now. I mean, today was nice, but…”

Sarah hears the shower turn on with a screech. They really should fix the bathroom in Sam’s room.

“But?” she asks.

“There are so many things to talk about,” Sam says silently. “I told you how Bucky’s been kinda, asshole-y about the shield. He has his reasons, but now, more than ever, I feel like we’d need to talk about it before jumping into anything, and about what’s been going on since Steve. I don’t know. It’s just a lot.”

Sarah nods, she understands. Doesn’t mean she’s not going to tease Sam about it. “But you totally want him, right?”

Sam looks away and snorts, but there’s a small smile on his lips. It’s basically a confirmation.

“I knew it,” Sarah says. “If he wasn’t so clearly love-struck by you, I’d want that too. We’ve always had the same taste in men.”

Sam laughs freely at that. “Like he wasn’t flirting with you the first chance he got.”

Sarah smiles. “I think he just wants me to like him.”

Sam shrugs and then walks over to her to pat her shoulder. “Thanks, Sarah. Check again after this is all over, yeah?” he says and Sarah gives a small nod. The conversation is clearly over when Sam moves to the living room and asks, “Hey, we still have those Lord of the Rings films? I promised to show the first one to Bucky while he’s here.”

“In the top drawer under the TV,” Sarah tells. “You are so far gone, Sam Wilson.”

“Nope,” Sam just says and then moves to search for the film to put it ready.

Bucky joins him ten minutes later, hair wet and much calmer than before. He sits next to Sam on the couch, seems to think about it for a minute and then just leans closer to Sam’s body and mutters something that Sarah doesn’t hear. It makes Sam laugh, though.

Nothing there. Right.

Sam looks up to her. “You joining us?”

Sarah shakes her head. “Nah, I’ll leave you two to it. I’m gonna go and check if the boys are actually asleep.”

Sam nods, but Bucky seems to be too busy staring at a wall to care. Sarah doesn’t mind, Bucky seems like the type to forget himself.

When she walks past the living room only moments later, Bucky is now sprawled on the couch, his head fully on Sam’s lap. He is watching the movie intensely while Sam is watching Bucky, a hand playing with his hair. When Sam’s eyes catch Sarah’s his face is saying, don’t you dare say anything.

She gives him a thumbs up.