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Peter Rogers

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Peter had never been cut out to rule the kingdom, even Tony had said so. Peter couldn't fight, Peter wasn't confident, he couldn't make decisions, he was an anxious mess half the time, and any mention of violence had him going into a fainting spell. And that was particularly bad because the rebellion in the kingdom was as violent as ever, deaths skyrocketing to an outrageous number a day. 

 

In a last ditch effort to make Peter better, he sent Peter to go train with Steve, their head knight. Although it wasn't just training with Steve like Tony had made it seem in the beginning. Sure, Steve tried to teach Peter how to hold a sword properly so he wasn't completely defenseless but there were a number of times where they just went for walks together, they hung out with Bucky (the royal family’s main body guard), they talked. 

 

Peter found it refreshing to be around Steve. It was better than the alternative anyway, staying with his father who would only gently remind him that he was not fit to inherit such a kingdom in any way. Most days Peter could handle the criticism. He grew up with it and long ago he learned how to make himself quiet and nod along with Tony. 

 

But some days, the days when he told his father he wanted to be with Steve, to train, were the days where he knew he wouldn't have been able to hold his temper if Tony had said something rude again. 

 

Funny enough, Peter had accidentally begun to see Steve as his father, or a father figure. He was closer to that role than Tony ever had been. He joked in his mind sometimes that Bucky was just like his uncle figure, because Steve and Bucky were brother's, and everything but blood proved that. 

 

And if those two were his uncle and father figure, then Natasha was his aunt, or maybe even a rich step-mom. (Not because of anything going on between her and Steve, just because Peter thought she gave off those vibes). She was their seamstress, but only because no one else would let her be a knight. She would have made a fabulous knight. She taught him once how to make a murder look like self defense. Not that he would ever need that information, but still. 

 

He knew that would be the first thing he does when he comes of age and the kingdom is truly his. Promote Natasha to being his own personal knight. There's no one else he would have trusted.

 

And if Natasha was his rich step-mom then Yelena was his rich aunt. He imagined her in a prim and proper evening gown, ready for a night out in town. Yelena was a good fighter too, but she didn't want the lime light like Natasha did. She was mostly content with staying with the other seamstresses, putting too many pockets in his tailored vests and jackets. 

 

Long story short, he'd crafted an entire found-family in his mind, made up of the people who loved and respected him for who he was. Not who he couldn't be, or who he would be, or who his father was. They had all worked in the castle their entire lives, they were over the whole royal thing anyway. 

 

He wished his father was one of those people. 

 

...

 

Peter knew his father was right sometimes, about him not being ready to lead. Knew because sometimes he walked into the kitchen and caught the headlines of the paper his father was reading and stood frozen in shock because was that really happening?, or walked into his father's study and found paper work that he didn't at all understand. 

 

Today, it happened again. He'd walked into the commons. He'd just wanted to sit by the fire and read a book to pass time. His father was there, but that was no matter to him. He liked it when they sat together and read. 

 

It was only when he caught a few words on the paper that he froze, squinting to read more. He gasped when he caught on. 

 

"What does it mean, the rebels are winning?" Peter asked, catching his father's eyes immediately as he put the paper down. 

 

"Just that," Tony said, like it was the most obvious thing in the world. Maybe it was. "If you got your head out of a book and started doing some actual training more often, you would have seen that the rebels began their attacks weeks ago. Their leader is rumored the want to get to the castle."

 

Peter let the jab at his reading tendencies go, setting down his book. "You mean they want to come here? And they're winning?" 

 

"Yes Peter, is that really so hard to comprehend?" Tony asked exasperatedly, rolling his eyes. 

 

No, it wasn't hard to comprehend at all. Peter just never understand why the kingdom held rebellions such as this when it was a good kingdom. His father was a good ruler, better than any of the neighboring kingdoms. 

 

King Beck was stubborn and manipulative, always out to get his own way with things. King Pin was clearly playing them all a fool. King Toomes always has something shady going on behind the scenes and Peter wonders why his subjects don't see that. Even King Thanos, who claims to be an all merciful ruler, is always messing up. Always making public apologizes about this and that. Never keeping enough of a grip on his kingdom. He didn't have any guard to keep them in place, and so stuff was always going crazy. 

 

And none of their kingdom's had problems with rebels like they did. 

 

"Are they close? Are they already at the gates?" Peter asked, not sure if he could trust anything that would come out of his father's mouth left. 

 

"Doubtful. The guards would have sent a messenger hours before an attack were to happen. They're prepared for instances like this. The news just likes to rile people up," Tony said, shaking his head and tossing the paper elsewhere, taking another sip of his tea. "Clearly, it's working," Tony said, giving Peter a once over. 

 

"I have the right to be a little paranoid when you just told me that the rebels are succeeding in marching right up to our gates," Peter argued, his eyebrows scrunching in anger and his arms wrapping around himself. 

 

Tony chuckled meanly. "Yeah sure," he murmured, taking another sip of his steaming beverage. 

 

"What?" Peter asked, but Tony just shook his head. Peter asked again, "no, what is it?" 

 

"Nothing nothing, it's just," Tony took a deep breath, as if to stop himself from laughing again. "This is why you will never be a true ruler. To rule a kingdom you need to be able to keep your cool and never show when you're frazzled. Right now, your emotions are written all over your face. You're doing nothing but giving the enemy leverage."

 

Peter fixed his expression, offended. "That's not true. Sometimes it's good to be vulnerable, it doesn't mean I will be less of a ruler one day," Peter fought, his voice small. Peter knew that Tony heard that he wasn't confident at all in his words. 

 

"Oh yeah?" Tony asked with a smile, as if this whole thing was a joke to him. He took another sip of tea as Peter nodded. "Where's your crown? You know you're supposed to have it on right now, yeah?"

 

Peter's eyes widened and his hand rocketed to his head before he could stop himself. He felt like he would be losing if he admitted that he had no clue where his crown was. He couldn't remember if he put it on that morning or not. Or maybe he had put it on, he'd just taken it off to do something and forgotten it there. 

 

Clint would be annoyed if he had to go down to the royal safe and grab a crown for Peter because he forgot where his was again. The safe was a hassle to open. 

 

"I- uh, I just-" Peter looked down, embarrassed. "I don't like the way the crown feels... it's too heavy," he mumbled under his breath. 

 

"Be sure to tell Clint that, next time he goes down to get you a new one. Not too heavy, not too big, not too shiny, not too many gems, anything else you want to add to the list of demands, princess?" Tony asked mockingly. 

 

"I-I," Peter fumbled with his words, staring intently at the ground. "You- why must you say the meanest things sometimes?" he whispered. 

 

"Oh I'm just messing with you, why must you be so sensitive," Tony rolled his eyes. "Go find Steve and train for a while. There nothing here that I need you to do." Tony picked up the paper once more, flipping to a new page. "And find your damn crown while you're at it."

 

Peter did nothing to acknowledge his father as he walked out, his book long since forgotten. 

 

...

 

When Peter finally found Steve he was in the middle of a sparing session with one of the younger knights. Peter waited off to the side, all the while feeling tears prick at the bottom of his eyes, before Steve finally noticed Peter and recognized his frustration. 

 

He stopped sparing gradually and told the new recruit to take a break and go find have some lunch.

 

Once the young boy was gone, thoroughly avoiding eye contact with Peter who was doing his damn best to not break down right then, Steve came up to the boy, sheathing his sword. 

 

"Pete, bud, what's wrong?" Steve whispered, getting down to his knees. From there, he was only a little shorter than eye level with Peter, the poor boy was so small. He placed his hands on Peter's cheeks, just in time to catch the tears that started falling. 

 

"He's so... he's so mean Steve," Peter cried, his knees buckling as he fell into Steve. 

 

The older man hugged the boy, his frame enveloping the young prince's. "Oh buddy," he whispered. 

 

"I lost my crown again and he made fun of me for it and- and then he called me a demanding princess and said I was too sensitive because I couldn't take a joke and I- I-" Peter broke off with a sob, pressing himself against Steve. 

 

The man hugged him lovingly, shushing him and trying his best to cheer the boy up ("You are the most selfless prince this nation could have asked for. You know you don't listen to him, you listen to me, to what I say. He is wrong, he always has been. You don't deserve this, I'm sorry honey."). 

 

It was only when Peter's tears started to taper off that he noticed the presence of his second favorite guard walking in. 

 

"Hey Baby Spider," Bucky murmured as he sunk down to the ground with the two of them, taking Peter's full body weight when Steve handed him off. "A little birdy told me my favorite prince was hurtin'. Had to come see if the birdy was right." 

 

Bucky rocked the two of them back and forth, humming a soft tune as Peter hiccupped and started briefly crying again before Bucky and Steve calmed him down. They always worked better as a team when it came to Peter. 

 

Bucky murmured the tale of his day while Peter's breathing went smooth again, and a tale of Steve when they were younger, and some of the stupid things the other guard did. Steve was blushing the entire time, hitting Bucky's shoulder when he laughed at the really good parts. But eventually Peter let out a choked laugh and Steve allowed it. 

 

His embarrassment was a small price to pay if it meant Peter feeling even slightly better. 

 

"You know," Bucky started like he always does and Steve was already rolling his eyes because he knew where this was going. "If he wasn't the king, I would-"

 

"Careful what you say Buck," Steve interrupted like he always does. "You're wildest fantasy might be for a different king, but that doesn't mean he ain't still the king now. Don't say something you can't take back." 

 

"Am I ever king in you fantasy, Buck?" Peter asked quietly, his head resting against Bucky's shoulder and his body rested against Bucky's chest. His legs had ended up on Steve's lap, though he didn't know how. 

 

"Always, Baby Spider. Wearing the most fancy clothing during important events and giving everyone an audience because you're such a people pleaser," Bucky asked, shaking the boy back and forth a bit. "You're gonna be just like that when you come of age. You'll be so gracious, the People Pleasing Prince turned Bravest King Ever."

 

"That's really your wildest fantasy, Buck? That's kind boring," Steve teased, reaching over and nicking Bucky's knee. 

 

Bucky scoffed, hitting away Steve's hand. "Oh shut it pipsqueak, I could still take you down right here and now," he challenged, sizing the man up. 

 

"Oh you think so?" Steve asked, sitting up straighter to make himself look taller. "Even when I have my..." Steve paused dramatically before snatching Peter form Bucky, "Secret Weapon? Mwahahahaha," Steve laughed, carrying Peter around with him like a shield. It was all worth it when Peter laughed, a little high pitched squeal that Steve first heard when the boy was nearly 5 years old. 

 

He had never had any trouble at getting the boy to laugh like that. 

 

"Oh no," Bucky said dramatically, holding his hand out in front of his while the other rested on his forehead like a Victorian women about to faint. "Not Peter!" 

 

"Yeah!" Peter pitched in. "Not Peter!"

 

Bucky took a step forward and Steve swung Peter around so he was Steve's shield again and Bucky went back to his dramatic pose, claiming dramatically that he could never hurt Steve if Peter was in the way and that even thinking of hurting Peter was a crime. 

 

Peter laughed the entire time, music to Steve's ears. By the way Bucky was acting, he was sure it was aiding his mood as well. Eventually they tired out and Steve couldn't carry Peter anymore. Not that it took much to carry the boy. He was small and skinny, the beauty standards for any prince. It was either that or tall and muscular, and Peter couldn't pull that off. 

 

A few minutes after their playing had ended, Bucky was called out to handle some important business. It was either him or Steve (one of them had to stay with Peter, because he was required to stay with either a guard or the king himself at all times unless in his rooms) and Bucky volunteered himself. It seemed that was who the messenger wanted, anyway. 

 

"Hey, now that that boring grump is gone," Steve said sarcastically, enjoying the way Peter joined in on his laughing, "why don't we go find your crown and then sneak down to the kitchen and see what tonight's dinner will be, hm?" Steve asked, cushioning the reminder that Peter lost his crown with the promise of fresh bread. The kitchen always had fresh bread. 

 

"Sounds good," Peter said, jumping up to his feet and insisting he helped Steve up. 

 

Steve chuckled and allowed it, though he didn't make it easy for the kid. He put all of his weight into his behind and let gravity do it's thing whilst Peter tried to get him up. 

 

Steve would never understand how the king didn't want any part in these kinds of moments. Moments where Peter's memory issues weren't his main priority. Moments where he was a kid, even if just for a few seconds. Moments where Peter was full heartedly laughing, to the point where he couldn't get a breath in because he was just having fun. 

 

Finally Steve allowed to boy to actually help him up, laughing when Peter fell down at the sudden change of force. Steve helped Peter up, listening to Peter grumbled the whole time because he was supposed to help Steve up, not the other way around. 

 

Once they got to the door, they quickly composed themselves. It was fun to be together behind closed doors, to laugh and play games together like normal fathers do with their sons (Peter referred to Steve as his father a lot in his mind) but that didn't mean it was proper procedure for a knight to act that way with a royal family member. 

 

"Well, Your Highness," Steve started after walking around for a bit in the halls, "where was the last you put it?"

 

Peter used to hate it when Steve called him that. Your Highness. He hated the term in general, hated how mocking it sounded from some people, how trusting it sounded from others. But Steve had sat him down one day, years ago, and explained to him that when he was calling Peter "Your Highness", it was just to keep up appearances. He said that Peter should just imagine it was Steve saying his name, or better yet, "Baby Spider" since he liked that nickname from Bucky so much. 

 

Yes, Steve had actually said that. That had been a good day, like today. One where Steve had found him or he had found Steve, he couldn't remember, and they each brightened the other's day substantially.  

 

"I... uh," Peter reached as far back as his memory went for the day, trying desperately to remember. It always frustrated him because this never happened with anything but his crown, and it only happened when he needed it. "Maybe my rooms?" 

 

"Alright, we'll check there first," Steve said soothingly, bumping Peter's side gently. "The castle is only so big, it'll be alright."

 

Peter laughed, because the castle really was that big. But thankfully they found it on the way to Peter's room, sitting on one of the hallway desk decorations (the ones that held all those vases with flowers in them that always made Peter sneeze when he passed). 

 

So one found crown and 13 sneezes later, they were walking in and out of the kitchen after being offered a few slices of warm bread by Sam, their chef. 

 

"Thank you!" Peter called as they were forced out of the kitchen because Sam had to prepare for dinner. Peter knew Sam loved them. 

 

"What next?" Steve asked, playing along with Peter's playful mood. 

 

"Let's go take a walk in the garden Steve!" Peter yelped when Steve gave him a reprimanding side jab. One look from Steve told Peter what he did wrong. "Sorry," Peter cleared his throat. "Sir Steven," he said properly, obnoxiously winking. 

 

Steve snorted quietly, rolling his eyes fondly toward the boy. "Whatever you say, Your Highness," he hummed, changing course to walk towards the gardens in the fasted way he knew how. 

 

"Today has been a successful day," Peter said offhandedly. "Bucky smiled in front of me, I found my crown, we got bread, and now we're going to the garden! It just keeps getting better," Peter commented. 

 

Steve smiled down at Peter, amused. He lifted a hand and flicked Peter's crown so it was level once more. Peter yelped and smacked Steve's hand away, ultimately making the crown go lopsided again. Steve let out a sigh, in which he failed to hide his laugh. 

 

Peter started talking again as they walked, moving in every way he could. Spinning, twirling, skipping, hopping, jumping on one foot. Peter was always like that, couldn't stand still for a second. It was one of the things his father hated most about him, but he couldn't help it! He just needed to move around and be up and free! Who wants to be sitting in a boring room, in an uncomfortable seat, staring at the same paper work day after day anyway? 

 

It was like that when it happened, Peter twirling and jumping around, a hand catching his crown on his head just before it fell when the castle went dark in one fell swoop. All humming stopped at the lights went out. Dead silence as Peter came to a halt, eyebrows scrunched forward. Because they had back up generators in case the lights went out, so why weren't those powering up right about now? 

 

It particularly freaked Peter out because even if the back up generators weren't working, there was Code: FRIDAY that would alert everyone to exit the premises in that case. But not even that was going off, just the same eerie, dead silence. 

 

"Steve?" Peter asked, but he didn't have to say anything. Steve already knew his question. 

 

He mumbled something under his breath, as if his brain was finally catching up with his mind, and took one stride forward before he grabbed Peter's hand and took off faster than Peter could keep up. He never liked running, and no one (especially Steve) forced him to run when he didn't want to. 

 

It probably would have been helpful in this situation.  

 

"Steve," Peter whispered again, his voice shaking. He'd never liked the dark before. 

 

"It's alright bud, it's alright I've got you, you're safe," he said hurriedly, running through the halls. He wasn't paying proper attention to Peter, just uttering empty reassurances that Peter would have normally fallen for. 

 

Peter wasn't oblivious enough to believe the man's false promises when his father's coding wasn't working. Because his father didn't mess up, he was a meticulous man that made no error. If something like Code: FRIDAY was put into place, then it was worked to perfection. There would have been no reason that the coding shouldn't have worked. 

 

Unless tampered with...

 

"Why are we running then? Where are we going?" he asked frantically, shaking the hand that Steve was holding to get his attention. When Steve didn't answer, Peter's eyes widened in shock. Steve never ignored him, he said Tony does that enough so he would never intentional not answer Peter. Steve had always tried to make Peter feel as human as possible.

 

It was when they were turning the corner, too quickly for Peter, that he lost his footing and he tripped. One thing went wrong after the other and finally Peter let his tears fall, he couldn't hold them in any longer. He didn't understand, he didn't- he didn't like this at all...

 

"Steve," he cried, hiccupping when Steve bent down to lift him up. 

 

"Hey," Steve murmured, smoothing down his hair. Peter's crown was long forgotten on the floor. "You're ok, yeah? I'm here for you. It's just... some people are in the castle and they aren't supposed to be. We just need to get to a safe location and then we can cuddle and stay together for the rest of the night until we know it's safe. We just have to hurry because it isn't safe here right now, ok?" 

 

Steve help Peter look him in the eyes, letting the prince know he was being completely sincere. "I've got you, Petey. I got you, ok?" 

 

Peter hesitantly nodded and Steve gave a firmer nod back before they took off again, somehow even faster than before. 

 

But Peter wasn't confused anymore, he followed the man, put all his attention into not tripping, and willed the tears away. He didn't even notice the lack of weight atop his head. Or maybe he did, maybe some part of him felt relieved that it wasn't there anymore. 

 

He didn't know how Steve managed to navigate his way through the castle through the dark, but it was something Peter surely wouldn't have been able to do were he alone in this. Peter thought he'd known his home so well until it actually came down to it. Maybe he should ask Steve about that, whenever this ended. 

 

He only picked up on little hints as they passed hall after hall. Whispering and muttering, frantic footsteps paired with the click of high heels. They'd just passed the maids courters. Doors taller than any other with a window at the top, light shining through the paint stained glass. They'd just passed the library. It got mustier, stifling as the air grew warmer and they went further and further into the castle, parts Peter had never dared to go- never wanted to go. 

 

"Steve, shouldn't we be going out of the castle, if we're under attack?" Peter asked. Now, Peter wasn't one to question the knights or guards. He trusted them with his life, as he should. But when it came to this he had more than a few questions, another being was he imagining the sounds of running footsteps behind them a ways away or was that really there? Was this really happening?

 

"There's bunkers we're supposed to get royals to-" Steve grunted, nearly running into a vase. Peter sneezed into his unoccupied elbow, sniffling. "They're the safest place you can be, with supplies to last you weeks when you're under there. If you don't get there, they'll assume you ended up dead from the first wave."

 

"First wave?" Peter asked, horrified. 

 

"Yeah, Baby Spidey," Steve teased, trying to lighten Peter's mood. "First wave, there’ll be more to come but you’ll be safe in the bunkers when those happen."

 

Peter cried quietly, shaking his head. "What is happening Steve?" Peter asked quietly, allowing himself another moment of vulnerability. 

 

"I don't know bud," Steve admitted. "And I'm not going to lie to you, this is bad. But we'll get out of it."

 

With a few scars, maybe, and some trauma that Peter didn't realize a prince as spoiled as him could have.  

 

He went to speak again, maybe to ask another question, or plead Steve to make it stop even though he knew the man couldn't do anything (his resolve was breaking), but he never got the chance. 

 

The sound was deafening, a battle scream that hurt Peter's ears accompanied by the sound of breaking glass hitting marble flooring. He let out a little confused noise and looked up to Steve, who was grunting and holding his stomach all too quickly for him to understand what just happened. When Steve caught his eyes, he broke it immediately to look at Peter's stomach before catching his eye again. 

 

"Pete," he said carefully, slowly. He turned around to fully face Peter and took a step forward, grunting in pain. "Trust me, ok?" Steve snapped in Peter's face when he tried to look down too, to find out what had Steve so rattled. "Don't look down, don't look down," Steve said hurriedly. 

 

"Why not?" Peter asked tilting his head. "Are you... ok?" he asked. 

 

"Am I ok?" Steve blew out a breath, as if he were annoyed to even hear those words from Peter's lips. 

 

"It's not important right now," Steve finally decided, shaking his head. His hand was still firm against his stomach but he wasn't bleeding too much so Peter supposed he probably was ok. Peter didn't know as much about medical stuff as Steve did. "We're- we were running, remember? From the rebels, we need to keep going."

 

Peter nodded and went to take a step but Steve stopped him again. 

 

"On second thought maybe we uh... shouldn't be running," Steve said, looking down again. Peter didn't look down with Steve, he'd made it very clear he didn't want Peter to see. Peter was a little curious though...

 

"You probably shouldn't even be standing," Peter murmured, moving a hand forward to... do something, but he decided against it last minute, letting his hand fall to his side again. "Are you in shock?"

 

"Am I-" Steve cut himself off again, shaking his head. "No bud, I'm not in shock. I just handle this kind of pain pretty well."

 

"Then why can't we keep moving?" Peter asked, once again tilting his head. 

 

He could hear them, the rebels. He couldn't see anything but the marble floors two feet in front of him and Steve, but he could hear. They were closer than before. He didn't know where in the world they had a sniper set up, but he knew that the main group was coming closer and closer and that they needed to leave. They would only hurt Steve even more. 

 

Peter couldn't let them hurt Steve more. 

 

So, in a moment of adrenaline rush and confidence, pure confidence that Peter had never felt before, he stepped forward to grab Steve's hand. He stepped forward, and he was about to make a run for it. Peter would be on his death bed before he let Steve get injured further if he had anything to say about it. 

 

Steve seemed to be having a bit of a rough time anyway, not knowing what to do, so he took his role in stride. 

 

It was the wrong move, because the minute he took a step, the second step happening before he could stop it, Peter was in agonizing pain, a pain he had never felt before. One that lit him up inside, made him want to scream. 

 

Except, he couldn't. He wanted to, but when he opened his mouth all that came out was a small high pitched squeak as he fell to his knees. 

 

Steve tried to catch him like he normally does when Peter falls to the ground, but they were both so uncoordinated and in pain that they ended up falling to the ground together. 

 

Peter was crying, jerking back and forth and wiggling and trying to desperately escape the feeling. He'd look down once but his clothing hid whatever had happened, the only indication that something happened in the first place being the dark patch in his clothing. 

 

Thinking back, Peter was probably hurting Steve just as much as he was hurting himself. He was moving constantly, he was probably moving Steve with him, shifting him back and forth. But Peter couldn't help it. He'd never felt a pain like this before. 

 

Steve was talking out loud, Peter knew, but Peter couldn't catch all the words. 

 

"...Natasha's room? ... keep running? You're too hurt... hear me?" 

 

No he couldn't, he couldn't hear the man- but yes he could! He could hear and understand Steve perfectly ok. But he couldn't and-

 

Peter was mixed up every which way and his stomach was burning. 

 

"Peter, hey hey Peter," Steve helped Peter zero in once again, grabbing steadily onto his shoulder. "we're gonna get you out, yeah? We just need to get to Natasha's. There's pathways behind the walls and to a bunker, she'll be there. She can fix you right up."

 

But isn't that a doctors job? Natasha isn't a doctor, she's a seamstress fighter. How does that...?

 

Peter didn't think about it for long, because, in what felt like no time at all, he was being lifted off the ground and onto his feet. Steve put a hand over his mouth before he could scream out. 

 

"I know buddy," he murmured empathetically, bringing Peter close and beginning to two off with a slow walk. "But we have to keep moving. Can't let anything happen to my favorite prince," Steve joked. 

 

Peter, on instinct, immediately said, "I win by default, no other prince's." His sentence was choppy, indented with gasps and whimpers of pain, but Steve still let out a breathy laugh. 

 

"Yeah, you're gonna be just fine," Steve said confidentially, "just keep being as stubborn as that and we'll get to Natasha easy-peasy."

 

But it wasn't easy-peasy because on the way they had to stop more than once, sometimes Steve needed to catch his breath and mutter some words of encouragement to himself before they could keep going, sometimes Peter needed a break from the constant up and down motion. They nearly ran into the rebels three times because Steve couldn't keep him entire mind on tracking down the rebels when the boy he loved as a son was bleeding out in his arms. After a while Steve realized they had over shot by about a hallways worth of rooms and had to back up to make it to Natasha. It was a mess. 

 

But they did get there, they did, and it was quiet. Eerily so. Quiet and dark and Peter couldn't help the small whimper that fell from his mouth. Steve forgave him, giving him a simple shushing motion, but that wasn't the problem. 

 

Because the minute those noises fell from the both of them, candles were lit and there was a roar of unknown people in the room, laughing and taunting them, sneering at them. One of them was holding Peter's crown, spitting on it before throwing it to the ground. Peter winced at the clang. 

 

And Peter felt terrible because it was clear he was nothing but a burden to Steve in this scenario. 

 

"I'm sorry, I'm sorry," he muttered, crying as Steve laid him down on the floor behind him. The wall protected Peter from the other side. 

 

"It's alright bud, you're ok. I trust you and everything you do Peter. I will die protecting the crown if it means you will make this nation better one day," Steve murmured happily, ruffling his hair. "I will die happily if it means saving my precious boy."

 

"Steve," Peter cried, looking over at the men in the background, pointing and laughing all over again. It made Peter want to sob. 

 

"You're alright Pete, I've got you," Steve promised before standing up. 

 

He was standing, most of his weight on his right leg as he held a hand to his stomach. But, nevertheless, he took his sword from it's sheath and took his battle stance. 

 

And the group laughed again because it was useless and everyone in the room knew it. It was 1 against at least 10, plus Peter who was a liability in every way that counted. But Steve didn't stand down, he didn't beg for their lives or bargain for a better fate. He stood proudly over Peter and took down the first three men that came at him, easily. 

 

Peter cried, and cried and cried and cried. 

 

He didn't want this. He didn't want to be the reason people got hurt. He didn't want to be the reason the only father figure he'd ever had died. He didn't want to be in a position where people got hurt and violence ensued and chaos was every day life. 

 

He didn't want it. 

 

Peter screamed, out of frustration and fear and sickness. This nation was sick. 

 

Peter would make it better. A place where the castle wasn't being invaded by strangers because the king wasn't good enough. A place where his future son didn't feel the way he did growing up. A place where people could speak their dislikes about his kingdom, instead of speaking their emotion through death and destruction. 

 

He would be more than a god his father claimed he was. He would be more. 

 

And when he passed out, a picture of a better kingdom on his mind, he could have sworn he saw Natasha holding a knight's sword out of the corner of his eye. 

 

...

 

When Peter came to, the doctor's cried in relief. The best doctors in the world crying in front of him, moving him around and making sure Peter was in the best position for possible recovery. It was unsettling to say the least. 

 

When Natasha visited him later, she explained it. 

 

"The king, your father, hasn't risen yet. The doctors believe he may parish. Their last hope was you," she said. She was sporting a few injuries of her own, bandages covering her arms and torso. There was a small cut on her forehead, but he supposed they didn't deem that dangerous because it was left unwrapped and exposed to open air. 

 

"What about Steve- Sir Steven?" Peter corrected himself. Steve would have smacked him upside the head if he messed that up in front of the man. 

 

"Recovering," she said slowly. "He isn't first priority at the moment, of course, so his recovery will take longer. But he's alive and not nearly as injured as one would expect." 



“-for attempting to battle over 10 armed men alone.” was left unsaid.

 

"Is he awake?" Peter asked, moving to sit up. 

 

"Yes- please, your highness don't move just yet-" Natasha leaped forward, trying in vain to sit him back down. 

 

"Oh stop it, Lady Natasha," he said, shaking his head. "I can't even feel it. I’m still numb from the drugs." Which was partially true. He only got so much medicine during procedure because they needed to save it. So he was definitely feeling it, but it was ok. He was ok. 

 

He needed to see Steve. 

“That is precisely why you should sit down! What if you don’t feel your stitches tearing and all of a sudden the doctors have yet another problem to fix and we’re down another royal?” Natasha asked quickly following behind him , worrying loudly.

 

"What do you suppose your title should be when I officially knight you?" Peter spoke aloud, ignoring Natasha and preparing for when his father wouldn't be there if the man really did pass. Except, he felt so calm about it. He didn't fear the moment he might have to make an important decision, he didn't shake and quiver at the fact that he would likely be acting king for the days his father sat out. 

 

He felt totally calm after everything. He was ready to step into what he was meant to do. 

 

Natasha gasped, "you mustn't speak like that, Your Highness. I am in no position to be dubbed a knight."

 

"Hm," Peter hummed, moving slowly to the room he knew Steve would likely be in. "I'll be the one to change that. You'll make an excellent royal knight one day."

 

Natasha let out a huff, likely in annoyance that Peter just ignored her warning (again). But Peter could hear her smile a mile away as she crossed her arms and acted like Peter wasn't speaking her dream. 

 

"This is it, yeah?" Peter guessed, stopping in front of the medical room commonly used for higher level employees of the royal families. 

 

"Yes, Your Highness," Natasha said, nodding. 

 

"Then I shall be going. Perhaps you should go and find Sir Clint? Tell him the big news," Peter whispered obnoxiously, wiggling his eyebrows. 

 

"I am not sure where this side of you came from, Your Highness, but I quite like it," she said, smiling back before she was on her way. 

 

Peter stepped into Steve's room and smiled when it was indeed him, talking immediately before Steve could even act surprised that Peter was out of bed. 

 

"I'm going to fix it Steve, I have a plan, I'm going to fix it all," Peter started, moving closer. 

 

"I knew you would," Steve said. 

 

"I'm going to start with the castle. We more compensation, better treatment. And then I can move to our land and what needs to be fixed. We can cut down out tax payer dollars and actually spend the money to help the poor villages," Peter said, his eyes lit up in excitement. He didn't realize he had actually thought about it so much until he put it all together. 

 

"You're going to fix it all, Petey," Steve agreed, nodding his head. 

 

"And then we can start compromising with the rebels. Give them a chance to speak out and say what they're unhappy with. They just need a chance to be heard, no one had been listening to them and-"

 

"Come sit with me," Steve said, scooting over with a little hurt noise. 

 

Peter complied happily, sitting and cuddling into Steve. 

 

"I know what you're capable of, Pete. I always have. Not once did I doubt your ability to save this kingdom. And I'll be by your side the entire way," Steve swore, kissing Peter's forehead. 

 

Peter leaned into him further, his eyes tearing up slightly. "I'm sorry you got hurt because of my position," Peter murmured. 

 

"Not your fault honey," Steve said, shaking his head. "Sometimes things happen that aren't in our control. We just need to find little ways to have control again. My little piece of control was saving you, my little Baby Spider, because you're worth it." Steve moved down, cuddling into Peter some more. "You're worth all of it, Pete. I promise." 

 

The rest of the night was for them, for Peter to cry and for Steve to dote on him and for the two of them to feel safe knowing the other was alive and in the their arms. 

 

Tomorrow, the real work would begin.