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Third Thoughts

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"Oh fuck you," says Steve to his phone.

"Not right now," Bucky says mildly from the other end of the couch, "Peggy's gonna call any minute."

"Shut up.  No, it's just-- I just did this Discworld quiz and it's tellin' me I'm Vimes, do I look like a Vimes?"

Bucky considers, resting his chin on his hand.  "Nah," he says after a moment.  "Maybe Carrot."

Steve splutters. "What? Fuck you."

"What?  You got the charisma for it."

"Says you."

"Says me."

"I hate secret royalty storylines," Steve says, "they're boring classist cop-outs.  Also I'm five foot nothing and my teeth don't go ting."


"Besides, Carrot's kind of an asshole."

Bucky raises an eyebrow.  "What's your point?"

The throw pillow hits him in the face just as the laptop burbles with an incoming Skype call.  He flails a little, knocking the pillow to the floor, before he manages to hit the button.   "Hey!"

"Peggy!" Steve yells, behind him.  "Peggy, he's slandering me."

Peggy's laughter is warm and fond, even through the crappy built-in speakers.  "What now?"

"I just told him he's not Sam Vimes, he's Carrot."

"I am not," Steve insists, as Bucky angles the laptop to get both of them in the frame of the camera.  "I am neither of those."

Peggy grins at him.  "All right then.  Who are you?"

"Tiffany Aching," he says promptly.

Bucky blinks.  "Wait, what?"

"Don't be ridiculous," says Peggy.  "You can't be Tiffany, I'm Tiffany.  You… are Adora Belle, actually."

"Thanks," Steve says dryly.  "You're pretty cute yourself."

"Oh, ha, ha." She gives him that under-the-lashes look, fairly devastating even from a woman in fuzzy pajamas.  "Tiffany Aching is a bossy selfish brat who happens to be on the side of the angels, which is obviously me."

"That I'll buy."

"Shut up, Barnes.  Whereas Adora Belle Dearheart spends a lot of time pretending to be hard as nails because she cares so much about everything.  Q. E. D.  You know I'm right."

There is a pause.  Steve looks thoughtful.  "Yeah, okay."

"Did I miss something?" Bucky says.  "This from the guy who wouldn't crossplay if I double dog dared him?"

"That's different," in unison.

He sighs.  "Fine, okay.  So I still can't get you in a crinoline, is what you're saying."

Peggy snorts.

"Nope," says Steve, not unkindly.

"Can't blame a guy for hopin'."

"All right, now that that's sorted," Peggy says, amused, "who would you be?"

"Uh, well--"  Bucky examines his nails, suddenly bashful.


"Polly Perks," he says, a trifle defiantly.

Steve blinks.  "Huh."

"I thought Mal was your favorite," Peggy says.

"Well, yeah, they are, but have you met me?  I'm not cool enough to be Mal."

"Aw, Buck."

"I'm pretty cool," he amends.  "But not that cool.  I'm Polly levels of cool."

"I can see it," Peggy muses. "Competent noncom, squashy center--"

"Hey now!"

"Looks cute in an apron," Steve contributes.

"Spend all my time hauling artists' dumb asses out of trouble," Bucky retorts, shoving him lightly.

Peggy laughs.  "Now, boys."

"Also," he concludes with dignity, sitting up straight, "I can rock the hell out of a pixie cut."

Neither of them can argue with that.