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Hit Me With Your Best Shot

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Steve fumbled with the keys to his tiny apartment. He thought that their post-mission debrief would never end, mainly because Fury really liked the sound of his own voice. Steve had pushed his chair away from the table the moment the Avengers had been dismissed, climbed onto his bike and gunned it back over the Brooklyn Bridge towards home. Tony had been pretty annoyed that Steve hadn't taken him up in his grand experiment in communal living, but there were some hard lines he needed to draw. Having some space to himself was one of them.

The warm metal was slippery between his sweaty fingers, and he dropped his keys twice before he was able to get inside. Once he was on the other side of the door, he turned the lock on the doorknob, then the deadbolt, then drew the chain just to be sure.

"Safe," Steve muttered under his breath. His heart was pounding loudly enough to to echo in his ears, but just knowing that there was a door between him and the rest of the world was enough to make him calm down a little. His hand drifted toward his belt buckle of its own volition--if Howard could only see him now.

No one had told him about the urges. Bigger, stronger, faster, sure. But Erskine never said anything about the way Steve’s sexual appetite would stretch and expand along with everything else. Tony liked to tease him about being uptight, but his airtight self control was the only way Steve could keep himself from bending every semi-willing person who crossed his path over a desk and fucking them into next week.

The uniform went first, peeled off over rapidly purpling bruises and strained muscles then kicked onto the floor next to the shield. He'd pick them up later. The only thing that mattered right then was getting one hand around his dick and the other around his balls. The head was already shiny wet and pushing past the foreskin, and from the moment Steve touched himself, a fat pearl of precome at the tip grew until it dribbled slowly down over his fingers. Steve gave a little helpless cry and let his head drop against the wall. He jerked himself roughly a few times before allowing himself to pick up the pace until his hand was no more than a blur. Sweat prickled beneath his armpits, and his knees buckled a little as he felt that heady wave of the day's first orgasm rushing toward him.

He could get off like this soon enough, but it wasn't the same. Not for the first time since he woke up, he found himself missing Bucky, who was always willing to drag Steve off to some secluded area and go to his knees. Steve would come down Bucky's throat three, four times before he was through, leaving Bucky’s mouth dark red and swollen, his face sticky and his expression a little dazed.

Steve felt it coming, felt the slow crawl of pleasure building up from his toes and making his already oversensitized skin feel too tight for his body. He bit down on the back of his hand hard enough to draw blood--he learned early on that the neighbors could hear exactly how much of a screamer he was. He hadn't had a chance to jerk off this morning when they got a four a.m. call to assemble, and so he needed this, just this once, and then his head would maybe clear a little and he could pick his stuff up off the floor and take this into the bedroom like a normal person.

And then a knock came at the door.

"Cap, open up." It was Natasha. Fuck. "Everyone saw you take that hit to the ribs--agree to come back with me and let the docs check you out, and I promise they'll make it quick as possible."

Steve knew that Natasha's word was good--she'd been a calm but imposing presence outside his room at SHIELD medical before, collecting him before the staff got too overzealous with their needles. But he couldn't open the door like this, with his dick an angry purplish-red and leaking against his stomach and his hair plastered to his forehead with sweat. He laughed to himself and realized he sounded slightly hysterical. Okay. Okay, he could do this. He just needed to calm down a little and tell Natasha to come back later.

"I can't right now," he said, trying for casual. But his voice gave out, cracking on the second word. "I'm actually pretty beat. I'll stop in tomorrow, I swear."

Oh God, he sounded pathetic.

"Steve, you sound pathetic," Natasha said. "I had to put with enough of this suffering in silence bullshit with Tony, I'm not taking it from you, too. Open the door or I'll open it for you."

He had no doubt that she would--he'd seen her dismantle locks much more complicated than his in a matter of seconds.

"Okay, I--just gimme a sec, okay? I'm not exactly decent."

Oh boy, talk about understatement of the century. He gave his cock one last stiff jerk before putting his hands on his waist and digging his fingers into the skin there. The sharp bite of pain from his nails took away some of the edge. Pain had always been good for that. He tried to will his erection down again--after 73 stage shows with scantily clad women, he used to be good at this. He took a couple of deep breaths, then scooped up his uniform and shield to carry into his bedroom, dick bobbing all the way. Once inside, he yanked a pair of sweatpants out of a drawer and worked them carefully over his hips. His skin was so sensitive at this point that even the brush of soft cloth stung a little. He followed that up with a t-shirt and a quick splash of water on his face. He thought about putting some ice cubes down his pants, but with the serum, who knew--there was always the possibility that it might make him even harder.

Steve took three slow, deep breaths from his core the way Bruce taught him; then he yanked the door open. Natasha was on her knees with a lock pick in hand. She'd changed out of her uniform, not that it made anything better--from this angle, he could see straight down the front of her t-shirt. Steve immediately thought of burying his face in the valley between her tits, of holding her down on the bed while she writhed and moaned.

He tried to say hello, but all that came out was "agh". Natasha slowly got to her feet as she re-assessed the threat level. Her hands were held out to her sides in case she had to go for a weapon or block an incoming blow. Steve experienced a wave of crushing guilt that was the most effective boner-killer he'd come up with all day. No one should have to deal with him when he was like this.

"Cap, you okay?" Her voice was filled with genuine concern. But all he could notice was the dark red curls of her hair against the strong line of her jaw, the generous set of her hips and the softness of her mouth. It would be so easy to just pick her up and carry her into his bedroom. He wondered if she'd let him. All that softness, right up against him--Steve took a step backward and crossed his arms over his chest. Not that it helped any. His erection was back, tenting his sweatpants in a manner so obvious to anyone with eyes that he could feel his face heat up in embarrassment.

"Please go." He forced the words out through gritted teeth. His t-shirt was starting to stick to his back with how much he was sweating. It wasn't even hot out yet, just that mild sweet warmth of early June before real summer kicked in.

Natasha gave him another once-over, taking in his flushed skin and the way his his fingers kept twitching. If he could just touch her, just for a few minutes. That would probably be good enough.

She stepped over the threshold and closed the door behind her. Turned the lock in the doorknob, then the deadbolt, then drew the chain. When she took a careful step toward him, Steve told himself to move, to get away from her. That he could handle it if she'd just leave. He'd been handling it himself since he first got out of the ice, hadn't he?

"Steve, you are not okay." She reached out to touch him, and the warm pressure of her fingertips on his forearm made him start shaking. "I can't help you unless you tell me what you need." She said each word slowly and clearly, like she was talking to a child. Everything sounded dim and far away.

"It's the serum. I need...I need you. I have to. I want--." She smelled so good, and she was so close, and by now there was a growing wet spot on his sweatpants and he didn't even care. He imagined bouncing her soft little body up and down on his cock until she was so wet that his own thighs would be slick with it. Giving up on the small amount of decorum he had left, he stuffed his hand back down his pants and grabbed his aching cock again. Even that little bit of relief made his legs go weak and his vision turn blurry as his body finally conceded defeat and a rush of endorphins curled around his spine. A wet stickiness slid down his cock as he pulled the foreskin back and forth over the head, not even bothering to hide himself from the surprised look in Natasha's eyes.

Steve thought this body meant that he didn't need help anymore. That he'd always be able to take care of himself.

He was wrong.


Natasha's eyebrows went up in surprise, which was quickly masked as her expression switched to one that meant business. "O-kay, then. Change of plans." She pulled her phone out of her pocket and thumbed it off before yanking off each of her boots, which stole a few more inches from her height. Then she took him by the drawstrings of his sweatpants and led him into the bedroom. He watched her take in the way his shield was carelessly thrown across the bed, where the quilts were still a tangled pile from when he'd rolled to his feet and bolted out the door earlier this morning.

"You were expecting hospital corners, weren't you?" Steve said. Usually there were hospital corners, but a little misdirection never hurt anyone.

"Something like that."

His earlier orgasm had cleared his head somewhat--he could still feel the urge to get off again sitting just beneath his skin, but he'd been dealing with this long enough that he knew he could handle it now. Natasha kicked the door shut and began undoing the series of buttons that ran down the front of her jeans. She made quick work of them, pushing them down to reveal powerful thighs and a generous ass hidden beneath sensible black underwear. It took a few seconds for Steve to realize he was staring dumbly at her.

"Tasha," he said, shaking off his reverie, "you can go home now. I'm fine, really."

Her gaze dropped pointedly to the wet stain on the front of his pants. There was a small bulge there, since his libido was unable to ignore a woman undressing in front of him even if his brain said otherwise. "So I'm supposed to act like that didn't happen? How long have you been dealing with this, anyway?"

Natasha took two confident strides forward until she was right up in his space, the fabric of her shirt pressed against the throbbing heat between his legs.

And just like that, he snapped, backing her up until she slammed into the wall. He braced his hands on either side of her face, hard enough that he could hear the drywall beneath his fingers creaking under the stress. Her eyes went wide for a moment and then she grinned, her white teeth flashing in anticipation. She wrapped her arms around his neck and then braced herself against him, shimmying upward until her thighs were clamped around his waist. He rutted helplessly against her, mashing his face into the side of her neck and inhaling deeply. She smelled like sweat, leather, and that cheap soap SHIELD stocked in all of its bathrooms.

"Ready to make your move, Cap?"

"You shouldn't let me do this," Steve said, ashamed. He was Captain America; he should be better than this. SHIELD would have left him in the ice if anyone knew how much he wanted to drive his cock into each and every one of those pretty girls and boys who'd ever asked for his autograph. He'd learned how to deal with it early on--duck his head, smile, and run off into the nearest bathroom for a quick handjob. People thought it meant it he was shy. Little did they know.

"Steve." Natasha put a finger beneath his chin and made him look up at her. Her lips were so red, so full, and when she licked them, his hands spasmed around her thighs. "You have to tell me what you want, or I can't help you. Do you think we spent millions of dollars to find you just so you could die from a case of blue balls?"

Steve laughed, and something loosened in his chest. He was pretty sure that he wouldn't actually die. Besides, if Natasha could joke about it, then maybe things weren't that bad. All the same--Natasha didn't ask for this. "Tasha, we shouldn't--you don't know the kind of things I wanna do to you. You have to be sure."

Natasha wiggled two fingers down the front of her underwear. When she brought them back up again, they were shiny and wet. She dragged her fingers slowly across his upper lip and, oh, the smell of her--musky and rich and right there--was an assault on his senses.

"Oh, I'm sure," she replied, deadpan. Steve was instantly hard, achingly so. His blood roared in his ears as the effects of the serum flooded his nervous system. He ground her into the wall, bracing one arm over her neck and fisting the other in the crotch of her panties. His fingers slid across the damp fabric--she was already soaked. He could just slide right into her without any preparation if he wanted, stretching her out so that she'd feel it for days afterward.

He let one knuckle graze across her entrance, and a little more heat flooded him at the way her hips jerked in response. Every now and then he used to take one of the USO girls up on their offer of a little fun, but it had always been a gamble. More often than not, all those long, lonely weeks on the road left most of them looking for warmth and affection, whereas Steve just wanted someone he could shed his stage persona around and be a little rough with. He could already tell that Natasha was different. It was obvious from the accelerated pace of her breathing and the way her pupils grew a little larger every second.

Carefully, so very carefully, he increased the pressure against her windpipe. Normal humans were so fragile--he'd have to watch himself so he didn't get carried away. Steve tightened his other hand in the fabric of her panties and twisted, hard, until they began to rip at the seams. She hissed, eyes fluttering shut at the sudden pain. He could imagine how it must hurt, all that elastic biting into pale white flesh, turning it red and raw.

"Steve, come on now, I've had better with my own hand."

Steve was never one to back down from a challenge. He tossed her now-useless underwear aside and shoved three fingers inside her without warning. He pushed them up, all the way up until the palm of his hand was pressed flat against her vagina. He liked how he could feel the wiry curls of her pubic hair, scratchy and moist, against the palm of his hand. He licked a long stripe up the side of her neck and around her ear, plunging his tongue inside until she squirmed.

"Do you get wet like this for everyone?" Steve asked. "Who else do you let get away with this? Barton? Stark? I've seen the way he looks at you. Or maybe it was Ms. Potts." He liked the sound of that. Steve found it easy to be around Pepper; she was so level-headed in comparison with Tony. And he really liked the idea of Natasha shoving Pepper's neatly tailored suits over those narrow hips so she could bury her face between Pepper's legs.

Natasha ran her hands through his sweat-soaked hair and yanked; the sharp pain travelled down through his scalp and straight to his balls. He'd been ignoring his dick so far and it was sitting straight up now, begging for attention and straining against the elastic waistband of his sweatpants. He wished he'd thought to get undressed first, but now that would mean putting Natasha down, which would be even worse.

"No, Steve, there's only you." She smiled sweetly at him and left a kiss, chaste and soft, right at his temple.

She was lying. He knew she was lying. But he ignored the little voice in the back of his head and allowed himself to believe it, just for a few minutes. That there was someone still in this world who cared about him the way Bucky used to. Someone who would take care of him. Still, it wouldn't hurt to punish her a little for thinking she could pull one over on him. He sank his teeth into her lower lip, licking and sucking until her face was flushed pink and her chin was shiny with spit. He shifted so that he could get one arm up against her throat, trying to see how close to the edge he could push her. Her fingers began to tighten on his shoulders and flex open and shut as her precious supply of oxygen began to dwindle.

But wait, no--this was dangerous. He should stop. What kind of fucked-up shit was he doing, anyway? Choking women? It had never been like this before the ice. Then, it was everything he'd felt as a teenager dialed up to eleven, but he could handle it. Now--he didn't know what this was. He backed off a little, panic and lust warring within him. What if Natasha never wanted to talk to him again? What if she walked out of his apartment and went to tell Fury he was some kind of psycho and needed to be kicked off the team or, worse, put back under the water again?

"Steve," Natasha snapped. "Look at me."

He looked up at her, and her mouth tilted downward into a frown. She was probably so upset with him. Steve reluctantly withdrew his fingers from her and frowned. He should probably let her down, let her clean herself up and get a towel before he did something he regretted. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have--"

She covered his mouth with her hand, then tilted her head back as far as it could go. Her neck was already flushed red from where his arm had been before.

"Come on, Rogers, I know you want to." She spit out the words, making him feel like a coward. "You've been such a good boy for the last few months. You did everything SHIELD wanted. Isn't it time for you to have a reward? I thought we were going to have a little fun there for a moment, with your arm tight across my neck like a fucking vise, holding me down so that I can't move until you let me, so that I can't breathe--"

"Jesus, shut up," he whispered. "Don't talk about it, please." Steve put his hand around her neck and squeezed until she couldn't speak anymore, only make these breathy little gasping noises.

He worked two fingers up between her legs, then, feeling daring, two more. She started to whimper, her fingers drawing dark red lines in his skin as she clawed at the hand around her neck. The serum gave him the advantage, but Natasha was stronger than she looked--his shoulder strained with the effort of holding her back while she begged him for faster, harder, more. Natasha's body clenched tight around him, sucking his fingers in deep until a violent shudder ran through her and a wash of liquid leaked into the palm of his hand.

Steve let go of her neck; he needed a second hand to hold her up now that her thighs were a wet, soaking mess. He fumbled his dick out of his pants and rubbed the head through the warm slick between her legs, teasing himself as his heart rate climbed higher and he started to feel a little out of his head. Steve wasn't really sure any of this was actually happening. Maybe he was asleep, or maybe this morning's engagement hadn’t gone as well as he’d thought it had and this was heaven. If it was, then he owed Sister Mary Luke back at the orphanage a thank you--all those prayers had certainly been worth it.

He'd just gotten the tip right against Natasha’s tight little asshole when a second orgasm crept up on him out of nowhere and hit him like a ton of bricks. That unmistakable pull started somewhere behind his bellybutton and dragged him downward, his ass clenching as he blew his load a second time. A stream of loud, painful-sounding noises that would probably leave him sounding hoarse for a while issued from his throat. He'd have been embarrassed, but it felt too good to care.

"That was..." Natasha started.

Steve laughed. "Yeah, it was."

Natasha slumped against his chest and only moved as much as it took to leave sloppy wet kisses against his shoulder. She ran her fingers up and down his waist, then around his back and beneath his shoulder blades. It was nice, just being touched like this, without any kind of intent other than comfort. It was also dangerous, because it was something he could get used to.

Natasha's cheeks were flushed, and her hair clung stickily to her forehead. She reminded him of another redhead he’d known a lifetime ago, and before he could reign in the impulse, Steve found himself tucking a strand behind her ear. It was nice to see her with her guard down like this, and he intended to respect her trust here in the safety of his bedroom as much as he did out on the field.

"Mmm, I liked that," Natasha muttered. "I'll need a few more seconds before I can move, though."

Luckily for him, Natasha's weight was almost inconsequential, no more than a solid warmth pressed snug against his hipbones. He pushed away from the wall and deposited her on the bed next to his shield. Now that was a pretty picture. He thought about asking her if he could leave it on the bed, but then went ahead and propped it carefully against the wall. She was already doing enough for him. Maybe next time, if there was one.

Her spine arched as she stretched, her shirt drawing upward to reveal the outline of her ribs and the indent of her belly button. Steve Jr. was still down for the count; otherwise he would have pinned her to the bed like he'd been wanting to since she’d first arrived at his door.

"I'm gonna go get some water, I'll be right back," Steve said, backing away from the bed. He left the room and then doubled back immediately, irrationally worried that she'd disappear through a window while he was gone. "Don't go anywhere, okay? Don't move a muscle."

Natasha took this literally. She arranged herself exactly as she'd been when she first landed on the bed. Her hands were at her sides on the quilt, and her knees were drawn up so that everything was in full view. Steve inhaled sharply, unsure whether he still had it in him to move. He watched her relax, a barely noticeable release of tension that started at her shoulders and flowed southward to the part of her that was still swollen and pink and shiny with moisture. Her entrance flexed open and shut, and a trickle of white fluid was visible for a moment before it continued its path toward the the pucker of her asshole beneath.

"Oh, oops," she said. "I moved."

And Steve had thought she was the one that needed to be protected.

The new apartment SHIELD had stuck him in was crammed with things he didn't really need. They'd stocked his closets with more of those disposable towels than he could ever use. He didn't like using them anyway, it seemed like a waste when he had perfectly usable normal towels on hand. Everything in the 21st century was disposable, it seemed. Even his personal effects, which had been lost over the decades after the SSR was shut down and everything to do with it was boxed up and packed away. The shield was the only thing he still had from his past--it was the most important thing he owned.

In the privacy of the bathroom he yanked off his shirt and sweatpants and, with a small frown on his face, scrubbed the last traces of dried jizz from his thighs. Ever since the ice, these little accidents had been happening more often than he'd like to admit, as though his body were making up for lost time. The constant thrum of arousal that Steve had grown accustomed to during the war was gone, replaced by a build-up that hit hard and fast as a grenade at point-blank range. It was a constant physical reminder that even with all of Erskine's enhancements, his body still found a way to trip him up.

Steve returned to find Natasha just as he'd left her. Her eyes were shut, and her breathing was deep and even. He made sure to make enough noise coming in not to startle her. Natasha opened her eyes once more and smiled a hello at him as her eyes trailed down his body in a frank assessment that made him heat up all over. He couldn't help smiling back.

"Ah, you can move now," Steve said, and handed her a glass of water. Head tilted to expose the long line of her neck, she knocked it back in one go. After a few seconds of waiting with his fists clenched in his lap, he gave in and traced the finger-shaped marks he'd left behind. "I'm surprised you'd let yourself just fall asleep like that in unknown territory."

"I know what I'm doing," she said with a smirk. "South-facing bedroom window leads to a fire escape, and the roof I can see out the east window is close enough that I could make the jump if necessary. One of those pencils on your dresser could take a man's eye out, easy. Barring that, you can do all kinds of damage with a king-sized bed worth of sheets." She idly wrapped one corner around her fist to drive her point home.

Happy at how blasé she seemed about the whole thing, he huffed out a laugh. Steve watched her wiggle out of her shirt and toss it to the ground. Her bra quickly followed, revealing generous breasts. She had these tiny nipples, surrounded by circles of dark pink, that just begged to be sucked. Steve laid one broad hand right beneath her collarbone, and smiled when she resisted the slight amount of pressure he put into it.

"What if I wanted to keep you here?" he asked. "Pin you to the mattress so you couldn't get up? I've got, what--sixty pounds on you?"

"Are you saying you want to try?"

And fuck it, he did. He ducked his head and gave her his best Captain America smile, which never failed to win someone over. "Ma'am, you have no idea how much I'd like that."

"That's where you'd be wrong." She looked at him coyly from beneath her eyelashes. He could feel the throaty rumble of her voice beneath his palm. "I know exactly how much you want it."

Steve's dick went from half-mast to fully alert just at the sound of that. He applied a bit more force, and she went down easily with a little oof of surprise. Even when people had seen him in action, they tended to underestimate how strong he was. Nevertheless, Natasha kept trying to wriggle out of his grip and testing for the right combination of force and leverage that would allow her to throw him.

And oh, god, he loved her then. He loved the sting of her fingernails against his skin and the way she rutted against his knee once he worked a leg beneath her thighs. He loved the way she groaned when he slapped her cunt hard enough to make his own palm sting, unable to decide whether she wanted to pull away or come back for more.

"Use your teeth," she panted, "please."

Steve didn't have to be asked twice. He started at her stomach, only to be coaxed down between her thighs, where he let his higher brain functions take a backseat to the overwhelming desire to bury his teeth into the soft skin there. The feel of her soft and wet against his face made him want to tear something apart, so he spread her legs open as far as they would go and pinned her knees to the mattress like a butterfly collector with a particularly interesting specimen.

He used his tongue to pave the way until he reached her clit, then bit down on it until he could feel her pulse throbbing fast and frantic through the artery in her thigh. She struggled to move a few more times but Steve wasn't willing to relinquish control yet, not with the way her desperate whimpering made something heavy twist in his gut. Who was she, that she would let him do this to her? She gritted her teeth and held out against a level of pain that made her body sweat and shake all over as he dragged his leaking cock against the mattress in a futile attempt to seek relief. But it wouldn't be enough, not this time. He'd memorized all the signs of her coming orgasm before, and he pulled away as soon as she started making those breathy moans that meant she was creeping closer to the edge.

"What?" she gasped, startled. There was no evidence of playacting as she tried to shove his head back down again, none of her earlier begging as she growled an order at him to get back to work. Most people snapped to attention at the sound of that voice, but it only kicked Steve's arousal into overdrive.

"Sorry, new marching orders," Steve said. It was an easy matter from there to roll her over and control both her wrists, to steal some of her leverage as she bucked against him. She scrambled to her knees and tried to escape, which only put the curve of her gorgeous ass right in front of him.

"Oh, so that's how it is," Natasha said. He froze at first, trying to figure out if she was messing with him or actually upset. Then she backed up toward him so that his dick settled right between her cheeks, and all of his anxiety rushed out of him as he made a few helpless thrusts against her, his own slickness mixing with hers. Steve could lie to himself all day, but this right here was what he really wanted. He lived for that perfectly tight hole and that perfect first bit of resistance, making him think that he couldn't possibly fit.

Steve would never forget the first one of the chorus girls had led him back to her creaky little bed and presented her ass to him like a gift for his sole enjoyment. Doris, her name was, with pretty black curls and big green eyes. His good Catholic upbringing kept telling him how wrong he was to be enjoying himself as he'd pushed his way into all that incredible pressure. The smell of it, the sound of his hips as they slapped against her thighs, the way he came, embarrassed, only a few short thrusts later.

He wanted it to last longer for Natasha, so he made himself wait. He leaned forward and draped himself over her back until she was nearly hidden beneath him. Her breasts swung low enough that they dragged against the quilt; he grabbed one of her nipples, then the other, rolling them between his fingers as she bit her lip in an effort to keep silent. Every gentle rock of her hips drove her backside against his now painfully hard cock, and Steve felt himself begin to shake a little with the strain of holding back. He let go of her wrists and fumbled beneath his pillow to where he kept the lube on hand. He forgot to be careful with his grip, and wound up squeezing about half the bottle out onto the small of her back.

"Fuck, that's cold," she said, shivering. Steve bit back an apology, dragged his fingers through the mess, and smeared it over her asshole. He gave himself a few quick jerks, then rubbed his length against her soaked pussy. He could wait for what he really wanted a little bit longer. He could. Steve had never been one to take the easy route, and he wasn't about to start now. He grabbed her by the waist and slid into her nice and smooth,, her muscles grabbing onto him as soon as he was inside. A sense of peace that he'd been trying to find all day settled over him, bolstered by the knowledged that relief wasn't far off. He kept the tip of his thumb pressed against her asshole; he couldn’t look away from how it spread open to let him in.

This time Natasha came quietly, going slack and boneless against him. Steve pulled out, figuring this was as relaxed as she was going to get. Bucky had all these rules about doing girls in the ass. They involved using a certain number of fingers beforehand and putting his mouth places Steve wasn't too sure about. Besides, there were the rules, and then there was what worked for Steve. And he always preferred the latter.

"I wanna--" he started, then found himself unexpectedly caught off guard. He'd never had to ask for it before. With Doris, it had always been on offer, and with Bucky, the decision had been made for them. He froze for a moment, trying to think of the right words. The idea of just coming right out and saying it seemed, well--it just seemed impolite.

As it turned out, there were more than a few benefits to sex with a trained spy.. Without saying anything, Natasha dragged a couple pillows to rest beneath her chest, then used her hands to spread her asscheeks wide open for him. And to think that he'd almost sent her home again.

"Ohhh," she moaned as she was stretched open by Steve's not-insignificant girth. He scrambled for somewhere to put his hands that could help him hold back from driving into her the way he wanted to. He settled on gathering her arms behind her back and pulling her onto his lap. "Steve, wait, give me a second," she said, breathing heavily. "Small is not a word I'd used to describe you."

He tried not to feel smug. Even before the experiment, he'd been of a respectable size, something that he'd always been secretly proud of. The muscles in her thighs stood out in high relief as she fought to keep herself from collapsing right onto his cock. Steve invoked the Lord's name in vain a few times as he tried not to succumb to the solid grip of her, all around him, that made every muscle in his body tense.

And then she went ahead and let herself drop so that she was fully seated on his cock, and Steve just about blacked out.

"If I knew that was all it took, we could have started with this," Natasha said.

Sexual gratification was one of the few things that always made Steve lose control of his tongue. "I wanted to make sure it was good for you," he confessed.

"Why, Steve, I'm charmed." Natasha rose up on her knees again until he almost slid out of her, and the thought alone compelled him to grab her around her waist and hold her securely against his chest. He was pushing up into her before he knew what he was doing, balls drawn tight against him as his body begged him to just let go. She dropped her head against his shoulder, giving him easy access to her mouth for a sloppy, uncoordinated kiss. He sunk into it gladly, relieved to have some distraction from the sensation of her clenching wet and warm around him, pushing him nearer to that blessed sense of relief he'd been chasing since 1943.

Steve wanted to say all kinds of things to her. That he'd always be grateful for their first meeting, when Natasha treated him like a soldier instead of a science experiment. That he felt secure in the field when her voice was on the comms. That her body was amazing. Most of all, he wanted to thank her for understanding all the messy history that Steve carried with him, and the way he needed to feel in control of this thing wreaking havoc on his body, or else he'd fall apart.

Natasha went over easily when he pushed her down onto the bed this time, and he didn't bother to fight the urge to smother her with his entire body. Everything was quiet except for the sound of their breathing and the gentle creaking of the springs as the bed did its best to keep up with them. He kept a steady pace, hard enough that she gave a soft grunt each time he bottomed out. He felt sandpaper-raw everywhere, so much so that her gentle touch on the inside of his wrist felt like hot needles against his skin.

And then he felt it coming on for the last time, with all the same knee-quaking inevitability of being at the foot of a mountain as a landslide thundered toward you. Natasha might have said something, but he couldn't hear anything over the roar of blood in his ears. Steve just closed his eyes, bit down on her shoulder in order to keep quiet, and held on as tight as he could.

* * *

Steve felt limp and wrung out as an old rag."I—" he began, and then faltered. His ability to make words seemed to have short-circuited for a moment. At some point he must have rolled off of Natasha without realizing it, and the air that had felt pleasantly warm an hour ago now felt cold against his skin. Any remaining sparks of pleasure had petered out, leaving him shaky and exhausted. Steve dragged a hand across his face to block out the light. If he just focused on breathing for a few minutes, he was pretty sure he'd be fine.

"Hey, big guy," Natasha said, peering down at him. "You hanging in there?"

Her skin was dotted with harsh, ugly-looking bruises. Bruises that he'd put there. Steve thought of all the times someone twice his size had left the same kind of marks on him, and his stomach roiled in response. A series of dark reddish smudges decorated her wrists; each blemish was the size and shape of one of his fingers.

"I shouldn't have done this," he said. "I should have never unlocked the door." He should have said something to the docs down at SHIELD HQ when he first got out, should have ignored his stupid pride and found a solution instead of letting it drag on.

"Locked fortresses couldn't keep me out--you'd have to do a hell of a lot better than a door." Natasha place a hand on either side of his face. The feeling of her calloused palms grounded him a bit. "We didn't do anything I didn't want to do."

"I hurt you," he said miserably. "What kind of person gets off on hurting people--on hurting women?"

Her hair tickling his cheeks, Natasha bent her head to kiss him. It had none of the angry passion of a few moments before. Instead it was soft and leisurely, like the kind of kiss you'd give to someone you loved after a long time apart. He chased after her when she began to pull away; he licked the inside of her mouth, her full lower lip.

"You are a good person, Steve. Don't try and convince yourself otherwise."

Steve still wasn't sure that he believed her. Natasha had years of intelligence work under her belt; she could probably tell him the sky had turned pink and make it sound convincing. With a sigh, she rolled off the bed, went to the closet, and quickly located his bathrobe hanging on the hook inside. It landed on his head; he suspected she did that on purpose.

"Put that on and follow me," she said. He was a little surprised at how fast his fingers obeyed him. Being Captain America meant always being on, and most of the time he liked being in charge of things. Right now, handing the reins over to someone else filled him with a palpable sense of relief.

His feet were clumsy beneath him as he followed her into the bathroom. It felt like those first minutes in his new body all over again, stuck with bigger arms and legs and not the faintest idea how to make them work together. She let him into the bathroom, sat him down on the toilet seat and opened the taps on the giant bathtub that he never used. The dull roar of the water echoed off of the tiled walls as steam curled into the air. Steve felt himself recoil instantly. Back when he was a kid, he had loved taking baths. Their tub had been in the kitchen, so he'd sit in the water and let his fingers wrinkle up while his ma cooked and quizzed him on whatever he'd learned in school that day. But that was all ruined after the crash--the first time he tried to take this tub for a spin, his skin had started to crawl and he couldn't get out fast enough.

Natasha must have noticed the look on his face, because she turned the water off when there was only a couple of inches in the bottom. "No good?"

When he drove the plane into the ocean, the massive window had caved in, immediately flooding the cabin with icy water. Steve had tried to remember everything they taught him in basic training about breathing and keeping a cool head, but the water came on too fast, filling his nose and mouth as he and the plane plummeted toward the ocean floor.

Steve dropped his gaze to his feet and scratched the back of his neck. "I just like showers, is all." To his relief, Natasha didn't ask any questions. There were some things he didn't want to talk about.

Natasha was too short to make anything work with Steve standing up, so she sat him on the floor and rubbed him down with a soapy rag, using just the right amount of pressure. The knots of tension felt so good as they released that he thought he might start purring like some overgrown housecat. She washed the remaining grit from this morning's fight out of his hair and dried him off with a towel she'd kept warm on the radiator before tucking him back into bed. The quilt was still kind of a mess, but he was so drained at this point that he couldn't bring himself to care. He just burrowed under the sheets and let his mind drift.

"How you feeling, Cap?" Natasha asked, scratching absently at his scalp. The only other time she'd asked him that was during a fight after the Hulk had just pulled the crumpled remains of a school bus from on top of him. That told Steve two things. One, that he must look like a mess, and two, that Natasha was more worried about him than she let on.

Steve sighed and rolled over so that he was facing her. He wasn't ready for any more closeness than that, but he enjoyed the gentle warmth her body radiated.

"Just let me know if you need anything. A drink, another blanket, your shield under your pillow--"

He thought about that last one for a second until he caught sight of the smile hiding at the corners of her mouth. "You're teasing me, aren't you."

"Maybe." She rubbed one foot up the back of his calf. His dick made a halfhearted attempt to pay attention to the proceedings, but at the moment he didn't have enough energy to sit up, much less go another round. "Go to sleep, Steve."

He managed to mumble a few words of appreciation before sleep got its claws into him and dragged him off.

The mid-afternoon sun beating down on his face through an open window woke him up some hours later. The side of the bed where Natasha had been was empty, and his chest twinged with an unhappy pang at her absence. Steve listened for a few moments, but the only thing he could pick up was the steady drip of the faucet in the bathroom. He should have asked her to stay when he had the chance.

She'd scrawled a note on a piece of paper and pinned it to the pillow next to his face.

SORRY, CAP--DUTY CALLS. BUT CHECK YOUR PHONE, was all it said, written in the very pencil she'd threatened him with a few hours ago.

Steve picked up his phone from where she'd left it on the bedside table and couldn't help but laugh at what he saw. He must not have been as circumspect as he'd thought he was. Because on his phone was a picture of Natasha winking, nude but for his shield in front of her so that it covered up all the naughty bits. Right in the middle of the star, in bright red lipstick, she'd scrawled a big XOXO. And next to that, she'd left a kiss.