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Eternal Piece of Me

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"Giving someone a piece of your soul is better than giving a piece of your heart. Because souls are eternal."
- Helen Boswel

“What the actual fuck?” Tony blurts, incredulous, when the thick steel door slams shut with a resoundingly final clang. “Am I dreaming? No, seriously, is this a dream? A nightmare? What the hell did you drug me with? Because you,” he says, turning away from the where he’s fruitlessly yelling at the ventilation grid to point an accusing finger at the man who’d very unceremoniously been shoved into the room just a moment earlier, “are supposed to be dead.”

Stormy grey eyes snap up to Tony’s face, and Tony takes an instinctive step back, shoulders pressing against the cold concrete wall behind him. His sprained ankle screams in protest, and his already wobbly legs threaten to buckle under the renewed surge of pain. Tony curses, and glances down at his feet, shuffling them a little in an attempt to wiggle the metal shackle away from the worst of the swelling.

He quickly refocuses his attention on his new cellmate, though, when he hears him take a step closer. Baring his teeth, Tony hisses out a sharp, “Stay back!”

To Tony’s surprise, that actually makes the other man hesitate. It won’t last, not with the amount of pheromones Tony’s body is pumping out. He can feel the slick in the cleft of his ass, pooling behind his balls, and dripping down the inside of his thighs, and he knows the man watching him with that unsettling intensity must be able to smell it.

Probably would be even if he weren’t an Alpha, or HYDRA’s deadliest assassin.

As predicted, the Winter Soldier doesn’t pause for long. He looks back at the door once, then turns to Tony, and starts moving with purpose. Even with the metal arm hanging uselessly at his side, and a bite guard secured over his mouth, he looks fierce, dangerous. Like the predator he is.

“Stand down, soldier!” Tony barks, in a last-ditch attempt to, if not prevent, at least delay the inevitable. But his voice comes out shaking, sounding about as scared as he feels, and the Winter Soldier doesn’t falter, keeps advancing steadily.

Tony bites the inside of his cheek, and screws his eyes shut. Contrary to popular belief, he isn’t too arrogant to recognise when he’s about to lose, and he’s hopelessly outmatched here. Tony’s seen some of the footage of the destruction the Winter Soldier had caused during Project Insight—including Cap being thrown from one of the Helicarriers—before Iron Man was shot down, and captured as well. He knows exactly what the Winter Soldier is capable of, and Tony doesn’t stand a chance of stopping him.

Only, Tony realises after several seconds, there’s no pain. Well, no additional pain to all the parts of him that ache already. Slowly, cautiously, Tony peels one eye back open, yelping when he finds the Winter Soldier looming over him, well into his personal space, but not actually touching Tony.

The Winter Soldier’s chest is heaving with laboured breaths, very nearly brushing against Tony’s with every panting exhale, and his flesh and blood hand is braced against the wall next to Tony’s head, trembling hard. But it’s his expression—so incredibly conflicted, almost unsure, verging on vulnerable—that makes Tony bold.

“You don’t want to hurt me at all, do you?” he asks in a whisper. The relief when, after a tense few seconds, the Winter Soldier gives a minute shake of his head is nearly overwhelming. “Okay,” Tony says, nodding rapidly, and trying not to latch on to the hope blooming in his chest just yet. “Okay, that’s good. We can work with that, good start. You’re doing great, buddy.”

It’s obvious the Winter Soldier doesn’t know what to do with Tony’s nervous rambling, because he just keeps staring, and shaking. Tony regards him for a long moment, then decides to go for the long shot, and tries, “Bucky?”

Everyone knows the stories of Captain America and the Howling Commandos, and Tony probably better than most, thanks to Howard. He has grown up hearing about their bravery, their loyalty, their unwavering sense of patriotic duty—and all the ways he himself didn’t measure up—and, of course, the tragic deaths of both Sarge and Cap. Tony knows James Buchanan Barnes died in the Austrian alps in 1945, and he knows, regardless of the sheer impossibility of the situation, that the man he’s looking at right now is the same man who’s supposedly been dead for nearly seven decades.

The Winter Soldier flinches at the name, as if struck. His eyes grow wide, flickering back and forth between Tony’s, pleading, as he reaches back to fumble with the clasp of his muzzle, letting out a wounded little noise when he fails to open it one-handedly.

“Hey, easy,” Tony says. The Winter Soldier stops with his frantic tugging, and Tony smiles, as reassuring as he can manage, given the circumstances. “Let me get that for you. Come here, let me have a look.”

Gradually, giving Tony ample time to tell him no, the Winter Soldier lowers his head, until his forehead is pressed against Tony’s bare shoulder. The instant their skin comes into contact, a tidal wave of emotion—raw and unfiltered—crashes over Tony, making him gasp, and his hands shoot up to clutch at the other man. The Winter Soldier jerks back, confusion written all over his face.

Tony stares, simultaneously intrigued and absolutely terrified, as the Winter Soldier’s eyes flash gold, knowing without a doubt that his own are doing the same. And then he’s doubling over with a scream, pressing both of his hands into his cramping stomach. Whatever those HYDRA morons had injected him with to trigger his heat, it has also amped the usual discomfort up to eleven, and having a fertile Alpha nearby only encourages Tony’s body further.

“What—” Tony squeaks, startled, when the Winter Soldier drops to his knees in front of him, and nudges Tony to straighten up again, before replacing Tony’s hands with his human one. He applies just the right amount of pressure, in just the right place, and while the squelchy gush of slick that leaks out of Tony makes him blush furiously, Tony can’t bring himself to be too embarrassed because it eases the cramp, making his abdominal muscles relax again.

The Winter Soldier looks up at Tony uncertainly, and Tony—without thinking, or hesitating—threads his fingers into long, greasy hair, scratching gently. “Thanks,” he breathes, then groans when the Winter Soldier‘s hand presses down again. “That’s—yeah, okay, wow. You, ah, keep doing that while I,” he mumbles, trailing off when his hand bumps against the bite guard’s clasp.

It takes a bit of probing, especially with Tony’s fingers made rubbery by his steadily worsening heat, but eventually Tony manages to release the catch, and pull the muzzle away from the Winter Soldier’s face. He drops it when the Winter Soldier lets out his first unobstructed, much needed breath, his kneeling position meaning his mouth is alarmingly close to Tony’s crotch, and Tony’s overly sensitive, already half hard cock.

“Your arm!” Tony exclaims, giving the Winter Soldier’s hair a tug to make him look up at Tony’s face, and away from there. “What’s wrong with your arm? What’s the damage?”

“I—” the Winter Soldier croaks, voice hoarse and raspy from disuse. He swallows, blinks owlishly, and swallows again, coughing a little. He rests his cheek against Tony’s belly, eyes fluttering shut. “I—I remember being—being someone else. Being someone. I—I was a—a person, once. A—a James. Bucky? You—you know me?” he asks hopefully, glancing up at Tony again. “You know who I—who I was?”

“You are James Buchanan Barnes,” Tony says firmly, leaving no room for arguments. “Different, maybe, but still Bucky. You’re still you, no one can take that away from you. You’re Bucky.”

The Winter Soldier considers that for a moment, lips pursed, then nods, accepting. “I’m Bucky,” he whispers to himself, awed. Then, to Tony, he adds, “The arm is functional, but disabled. I—” his face scrunches up in thought, “I choked a handler. I think.”

Tony waves a dismissive hand. “They totally deserved it, trust me. No need to feel bad about it.”

“I trust you,” Bucky confirms immediately, lips brushing against Tony’s stomach, damp and warm. It sends an excited tingle up Tony’s spine, and Bucky hums, pleased, and curiously presses his open mouth to Tony’s hip. “You know me. You’re not hurting me. And I can feel you,” he says, tapping a finger against his temple, “here. You’re in here. I trust you.”

His expression is so gut-wrenchingly sincere, and he’s sending a subconscious flurry of emotion—trust, faith, devotion—along their still establishing bond that Tony’s actually getting lightheaded. “Shit,” Tony curses, because he deserves none of that, and has no idea what to do with any of it. “Fuck.”

Bucky easily moves with him as Tony lowers himself to the floor, ending up tucked against Tony’s side, his legs shoved under Tony’s. His human arm is curled loosely around Tony’s back, thumb stroking distracting circles into Tony’s feverish skin, and he seems content enough to stay where he is for the time being.

“Okay,” Tony says, exhaling in a rush, and digs the heels of his hands into his eyes. “Okay, we’ll just—we’ll just go from here, see what happens. Okay. Yes.”

After taking another deep, steadying breath, Tony lifts Bucky’s prosthetic arm into his lap. “Tell me if something hurts, and I’ll stop. Or if you need me to stop for any other reason. Just say the word.”

The look Bucky directs up at him is a mixture of disbelief, and wariness. “The arm always hurts.”

“I—” Tony starts, then cuts himself off, because what is he supposed to say to that? “Still. If you need me to stop, I will.”

Bucky sucks at the hinge of Tony’s jaw, there and gone again, then presses his nose to the same spot. “I know. I trust you.”

Tony ignores the resulting fluttering in his stomach, and gets to work. Opening the arm up without any tools is a bit of a challenge, but once that’s done, the rest is child’s play; all Tony has to do is reconnect two cables, pin them back in place, and the deed’s done.

The arm whirs, and Bucky sits back, stretching experimentally. Then he smiles at Tony, big and bright, and scrambles up onto his knees, reaching for Tony’s left foot. He slides two metal fingers beneath the shackle, flexes them, and the shackle falls open, the lock busted. Which is all nice and good, but won’t work with Tony’s right foot, not with the swollen ankle.

“It’s going to be painful,” Bucky warns, mouth tugging down at the corners. He has Tony’s foot cradled in both hands, absently running a finger up and down the bridge of it.

Tony grits his teeth, and gives him a terse nod to go ahead. It takes Bucky all of five seconds to remove the second shackle, but that’s more than enough time for tears to spring to Tony’s eyes, and bile to rise up his throat. Maybe his sprain diagnosis had been a little too optimistic, after all.

Dizzy, Tony lists to the side, but Bucky’s catches him, and leans him back against the wall. “Rest,” he murmurs quietly, and gently smoothes a few strands of sweaty hair away from Tony’s forehead. “Don’t move.”

Tony watches with heavy, half-lidded eyes as Bucky systematically searches the mostly empty air raid shelter, scavenging for supplies in the few still intact cabinets and footlockers. There isn’t much to be found, though, because however improvised this whole set-up might be, his captors clearly know not to give Tony access to anything that could be repurposed into a weapon. Which, unfortunately, leaves them with very little.

At some point, Tony must doze off, because suddenly Bucky’s back at his side again, and gingerly lifting Tony into his arms. It jars Tony’s ankle, and if he weren’t as exhausted as he is, Tony would be mortified by the pathetic little whimper that escapes him. But then he’s lowered into the nest of old sleeping bags Bucky has built between two of the shelving units, a tarp hanging overhead like a tent, and while Tony would normally make a sarcastic quip about hating camping, right now, he’s just thankful to not be sitting on cold concrete anymore.

Bucky crawls into their makeshift bed after him, pulling one of the footlockers after himself. He hands Tony a piece of wood that tastes like mold, but Tony’s glad to be able to bite down on it once Bucky begins to splint, and bandage his ankle. When he’s done with that, Bucky exchanges the wood for a canteen of lukewarm, limy water that Tony gulps down gratefully while Bucky moves on to Tony’s other, less acute injuries.

He’s littered with cuts, bruises, and scrapes after several days of trying to fight back against HYDRA, but most of them are minor. Bucky still cleans them methodically, as best as he can with what’s at hand, his face getting more and more pinched the longer he works.

“Bucky,” Tony says softly, after a couple of minutes, and props himself up on one elbow so he can cup Bucky’s cheek in his free hand. Bucky leans into the contact with a shuddering sigh, but he’s still tense, shame rolling off him in waves. “Hey, come on,” Tony tries to soothe, brushing his thumb under Bucky’s eye. “This isn’t your fault, you’re doing all you can. And I’m going to be fine, I’ve had worse, this isn’t—”

The rest of Tony’s sentence is drowned out by Bucky’s distressed whine. Tony moves his hand to Bucky’s stomach, and slides it up under Bucky’s tank top, rubbing it up and down Bucky’s front. The touch helps, making Bucky’s rigid shoulders lose some of their tension, but it isn’t enough to settle Bucky this time.

Tony chews his bottom lip, watching the jittery, distraught Alpha above him, and his heart aches at the sight of his soulmate, his other half, so obviously hurting, even if he’s still trying his best not to freak out about having a soulmate at all. “So, I’m going to try something,” Tony says, once he’s made up his mind. “If you don’t like it, you have to tell me immediately. You trust me, and I’m trusting you, too, here. To tell me if you need me to stop, okay?”

He waits for Bucky’s nod, and the quiet, “Okay,” before he curls his fingers into Bucky’s shirt, and tugs Bucky down, pressing a featherlight kiss to Bucky’s cheek. He doesn’t have any intentions of deepening it, means to keep it chaste—just a reassuring peck—but even that little bit of contact is enough to make their connection sing, and Tony gasp at the prickling that starts spreading through his entire body.

Bucky, clearly affected as well, breathes out shakily, and turns his head to properly bring their mouths together. Their bond finally comes alive at the first swipe of Bucky’s tongue across Tony’s bottom lip, and Tony’s helpless to do anything but kiss back, overwhelmed by the feeling of pieces he hadn’t even known were missing clicking into place, making him and Bucky one perfect, harmonious whole. There are low, rumbling noises coming from deep within Bucky’s chest as he leans even closer, carefully guiding Tony to lie back. He’s bracing himself on his metal arm, mindful not to put too much of his not inconsiderable weight on Tony, while the very tips of his flesh and blood fingers are reverently ghosting across Tony’s cheek.

It proves a herculean effort to stop kissing Bucky, but Tony manages. Just barely. “Do you—” he rasps, and licks his lips, getting momentarily derailed when the flash of tongue makes Bucky’s nostrils flare, and pupils dilate even more, his scent getting thicker, headier. But Tony needs to ask this, needs to make sure. “Do you know why you’re here? In here with me?”

“Breeding,” Bucky says, without preamble. He kisses the corner of Tony’s eye, then the bridge of his nose. “HYDRA has suffered great losses during Insight,” he goes on, mechanical and dry, clearly reciting some HYDRA asshole’s speech. “Many people have died, others have run, scared. Mostly scientists. And I am malfunctioning, the wipes are becoming less and less effective, it’s—”

Tony doesn’t want to know, he really doesn’t, but he nevertheless asks, “Wipes?”

“They put me in a chair,” Bucky says, voice small. “It hurts. It hurts for a long time, and then I forget. Or, I used to. Not so much anymore. I remember things now.”

Yep, called it; Tony did not want to know that. Jesus fucking Christ, those sick fucking bastards. Tony had expected torture, of course, but this is a whole other level. Mind control. Mind wiping, apparently. What the fuck?

“They want our pups, they think they will be strong, clever. Loyal,” Bucky continues, thankfully interrupting Tony’s train of thought. He bares his teeth in a snarl, eyes flashing murderously. “They can’t have them. They can’t have you, you’re mine. родственная душа. Mine.”

“Yours,” Tony agrees, arching up for a soft kiss, and rubbing a calming hand up and down Bucky’s back. They can talk about excessive possessiveness when they’re not being held captive by crazy, evil Nazi cultists. “The small black box just inside the door, did you see it? Do you know what it is?” When Bucky shakes his head no, Tony goes on to explain, “It measures pheromones, hormones. In the air. I—honestly, I’m not sure what their plan was, here. Probably for you to either fuck, or kill me. But, the thing is, they’re not going to open that door unless that box picks up pregnancy hormones. Or, you know, if I’m dead, and no longer useful.”

Bucky growls, low and dangerous.

Tony kisses him again. “I know, ssh, I know. But we can use all this to our advantage. I’m guessing they were counting on you just—just getting it done, you know? Slave to your Alpha instincts, or whatever. They sure as fuck didn’t think I’d recognise you, or unmuzzle you. Or that we’d be soulmates. родственная душа, right? Yours. They don’t have cameras in here, probably didn’t have time to set anything up, so they don’t know what’s going on. Which means, if we work together, we actually have a chance of getting out of this alive. You—” Tony swallows hard, because this is it, this is the moment that determines if Tony’s going to get a fighting chance, “you want to get out of here, don’t you? Leave?”

“I want,” Bucky begins, but then trails off, looking thrown by the concept of wanting. He recovers himself quickly, though, smiling a gorgeous, lopsided smile down at Tony. “I want. To get out of here. With you. But they won’t open the door unless I put a pup in your belly.”

“Yeah,” Tony says, tucking some wayward strands of hair behind Bucky’s ear. “That’s the gist of it.”

Bucky’s smile slowly turns into a mischievous little grin. “I can do that.”

“Oh, you can, huh?” Tony can’t help but laugh, the sound morphing into a moan when Bucky grinds down against Tony, erection nudging insistently against Tony’s hip. “Not with your pants on, you can’t.”

Bucky doesn’t need to be told twice. He sits up on his knees, and pulls the undershirt he’s wearing over his head, while Tony reaches out to flip open the button of his pants. Together, they have Bucky naked in no time, and then Tony has to take a moment to just look, because Bucky is a sight to behold; eyes black with lust, cheeks and chest flushed, strong thighs pinning Tony in place, and a trail of dark hair leading down his stomach to—yes, Tony might be biased here, but the point still stands—the most glorious cock Tony’s ever seen. Long and straining, the head red and glistening with beads of precome, and the base wider, promising a knot that’s undoubtedly going to make Tony see stars.

“Yeah, okay,” Tony says, wiggling his hips in anticipation. “You need to get that thing inside me ASAP.”

He pouts when Bucky shakes his head, and says, “You’re not ready. I don’t want to hurt you.”

“You’re not going to, it’s fine, I’m—holy shit, yes, please!” Tony groans as Bucky lowers himself back down on top of him, and wraps one big hand around the both of them. “Move, please. Come on, please, please.”

Dimly, somewhere in the back of his foggy mind, Tony’s aware that he’s been reduced to begging within seconds, but he can’t bring himself to care when Bucky—his soulmate, for fuck’s sake—starts jerking them off, and kissing him deeply. It only takes a few quick pumps for Tony to come, his body too wound up after hours of heat without any sort of relief. Bucky strokes him through it, through the aftershocks, until Tony starts flinching with oversensitivity. Tony’s still trying to catch his breath when Bucky trails his hand further down, giving Tony’s sac a playful tug as he goes, and teases two fingers between Tony’s cheeks, over Tony’s eager hole.

They slip in without resistance, Tony’s natural slick easing the way, and Bucky finds Tony’s prostate with an almost uncanny speed, making Tony groan, and Tony’s spent cock give a valiant little twitch. Bucky starts pumping his fingers in and out of Tony, torturously slow, carefully scissoring them with every other push. This time, when Tony demands more, he obliges happily, and adds another finger, then a fourth when Tony gives the go-ahead.

“Look at you,” Bucky murmurs against Tony’s lips, voice shot to all hell. He presses his metal thumb against the bonding gland on Tony’s neck, humming in satisfaction when Tony whimpers, and another gush of slicks leaks out over Bucky’s wrist. “So pretty, so wet. Gonna make you feel so good, sweetheart. Fill you up jus’ right. My pretty Omega.”

Bucky doesn’t seem to notice his slow shift to a soft drawl, but Tony definitely does, and he’s not complaining. Brooklyn-accented dirty talk beats the mechanical Winter Soldier way of speaking by miles, even if Manhattan’s obviously the superior borough. They can work on that, though.

“Wanna taste you,” Bucky continues, kissing down Tony’s throat and sternum—the gnarly scars from the arc reactor elicit a series of dismayed noises, but he doesn’t linger—until he can suck a nipple into his mouth. Tony hisses, and groans when Bucky bites at the hard nub, the pleasure-pain shooting right down to his stiffening cock. “Wanna taste all of you. Bet you’re real sweet, sugar.”

“Oh my God,” Tony breathes faintly, threading the fingers of one hand into Bucky’s hair, and using the other to hold on to one of the shelves. He’s getting the feeling he’ll need the support. “You’re going to be—”

He doesn’t get to finish, because Bucky makes good on his promise, and swallows Tony down to the root. His throat constricts around Tony’s cock, and he stays there for a long moment, eyes closed in what Tony can feel through their bond is absolute bliss, before he begins to bob his head, using just the barest hint of teeth on the way down, and suckng on the head when he comes back up again.

“I’m, ah, I’m not going to—to last if you keep that up,” Tony gasps in warning, but that’s obviously what Bucky wants, because he redoubles his efforts. He runs the nail of his little finger along the rim of Tony’s stretched hole, pushing the fingers he has inside Tony up against Tony’s prostate, and Tony throws back his head, and comes with a shouted, “Bucky!”

Bucky swallows Tony’s release down with enthusiasm, letting Tony’s cock sit in the warmth of his mouth, not giving it the chance to soften completely, and strokes his free hand along Tony’s flank. Tony is loose-limbed, boneless, but still manages a protesting grumble when Bucky finally releases his cock, and removes his fingers. But then Bucky’s rolling him onto his stomach—moving Tony’s injured ankle for him, Christ, Tony has lucked out in the soulmate department—and helping him to get his knees under him, maneuvering him into breeding position.

Tony fists his hands into the sleeping bags under him when Bucky noses along his perineum, and mewls desperately when Bucky closes his mouth first over his left, then his right testicle, gently suckling on each one. A deft hand parts Tony’s cheeks, and Tony can’t tell who moans louder, him or Bucky, when Bucky licks over his hole, then pushes in with his tongue. Bucky is making the most obscene slurping noises, alternately driving his tongue in as far as it will go, and scraping his teeth over the sensitive rim, all the while teasing a finger around Tony’s leaking slit.

“You taste divine, darlin’,” Bucky whispers, and hooks two fingers into Tony’s hole, spreading it open further. “Perfect. So perfect for me.”

When Tony starts pushing back against him, Bucky moves away with one last nip to Tony’s right ass cheek, but he isn’t gone for long. He rubs the head of his cock over Tony’s open, loose hole, just barely dipping inside, then pulling back again, hands grasping Tony’s hips to prevent him from moving.

There are frustrated tears gathering at the corners of Tony’s eyes before long, his insides clenching around nothing, and he’s shaking with the strain of keeping his hips raised. “Bu—Bucky,” he stutters, and sniffles wetly. “Bucky, please. I—I need you, Bucky, please. Please, Alpha, I—ah!

Bucky enters him in one smooth glide, until his already bulging knot is pressed snugly against Tony’s ass. “Doll, you feel amazin’,” he grunts, tightly gripping Tony’s shoulder with one hand, the metal fingers curling into Tony’s hair. “Tony, you feel so good.”

Then he begins to move, pulling Tony back against him with each push, setting a hard, fast pace. The rhythm is brutal, unrelenting—so, so perfect—each thrust forcing the air from Tony’s lungs, and making Tony cry out his mounting pleasure. Tony’s fingers scrabble for purchase, frantic but fruitless, until he gives up, giving himself over entirely to the cock pounding into him. He tilts his head in invitation, and Bucky doesn’t waste any time, plastering himself against Tony’s back to clamp his teeth over Tony’s bonding gland, breaking the skin just as his knot finally slides into Tony, expanding, and locking them together.

Tony wails, coming completely untouched, whimpering and gasping as Bucky fills him up with his release. He’s a trembling mess, pliant and unresisting as Bucky shifts them onto their sides, spooning up against Tony, and pillowing Tony’s head on his flesh and blood arm. He mouths and licks at the sluggishly bleeding bond bite, cleaning it tenderly, and peppers kisses on every bit of skin he can reach.

It takes Tony long minutes to come down from his high—interrupted by two more mostly dry orgasms when Bucky twitches his hips forward—but reality nonetheless seems to come crashing back far too soon, and with it the doubts. Tony doesn’t regret what they did, not one single moment of it—tricking the goons outside into opening the door is their best, and only option—but what if Bucky does? Or will, eventually? And now he doesn’t have a choice, because while there are platonic soulmates, platonic bondmates are extremely rare, and breaking a bond is a long, tiring process that doesn’t offer any guarantees. Tony has effectively trapped Bucky, chained him to himself, after Bucky has—from what Tony could gather so far—spent most of his life under the control of HYDRA, being forced to commit atrocities Tony can’t, and doesn’t even want to imagine.

Clearing his throat, Tony begins, tentative, “Buck—”

“Whatever you’re thinkin’,” Bucky interrupts, and kisses the back of Tony’s head, “stop it. I can feel you worryin’, and not about the shit you should be worryin’ about.”

“Get out of my head,” Tony scolds good-naturedly, chuckling, but quickly sobers again. “I’m serious, though. We’ll get out of here, together, but you don’t owe me anything. You don’t have to—to stay, after. With me. You know that, right? You can do whatever—”

Bucky props himself up on his elbow, and hooks a finger under Tony’s chin to make Tony meet his eyes. “I’ve been waitin’ for you for 98 years. If you think you’re gettin’ rid of me now, well, then you can think again.” He kisses Tony, then, fierce and promising. “You’re—Tony, you’re the best thing that’s happened to me in decades. Spendin’ these last few hours with you, I’ve gotten more of myself back than I ever had before, over weeks without wipes. You’re good for me, good to me, and you can be damned sure that I’m gonna follow you home. Nothin’ you can do about it.”

“Sap,” Tony says, trying and—going by Bucky’s softening expression—failing spectacularly at hiding how touched he is. “God, my soulmate is a total sap.”

“You know it, sugar,” Bucky says, smirking proudly.

Tony relaxes back against Bucky’s chest, the two of them settling down to wait. Either Tony’ll be hit by another wave of his heat soon, or Bucky has actually managed to knock him up on the first try, and HYDRA will come running, wanting to do tests. The thought makes Tony smile as he drifts off, surrounded by Bucky’s already familiar, comforting scent; he’d like to see them try.

He grumbles sleepily when he feels Bucky’s knot deflate, and slip out of him eventually, but doesn’t wake fully until alarms start blaring. Bucky is sitting upright, tense and alert, listening to the hectic footsteps, and nervous yelling outside. “Stay here,” he says, running his hand through Tony’s hair, and kissing the top of his head before jumping to his feet. “Don’t follow me, don’t come after me, no matter what. Wait here ‘till I get back.”

That idea is less than appealing, but, as Tony’s throbbing foot reminds him, what’s he going to do? Hobble at people? He gives a reluctant nod, tilting his head back for another quick peck before Bucky moves to crouch next to the door, just in time for it to open. The first two HYDRA agents are dead before the third even realises what’s going on, and then he, too, crumples to the ground, and Bucky darts out into the hall.

The thirteen minutes and three seconds Bucky’s gone—of course Tony’s counting— feel like the longest of Tony’s life. “Please,” Tony says, wide-eyed, when Bucky comes running back into the room, and gestures at the blood covering most of Bucky’s naked body, “tell me that isn’t yours.”

Bucky’s mouth draws up at one corner, eyes glinting. “It’s not.” He drops the duffel he’s carrying to the floor, then helps Tony out of their nest, and into a pair of pants, and a bulletproof vest, before dressing himself in what looks like a spare set of his Winter Soldier uniform. “You know how to handle a gun?”

Tony arches an eyebrow at him. “Honey,” he drawls, grinning as he reloads the handgun Bucky hands him without sparing it a single glance, “we have a lot to talk about once we get out of here.”

He watches Bucky’s Adam’s apple bob, laughing when Bucky asks, very seriously, “That was incredibly hot. Should I find that hot? Probably not, right?”

With Bucky’s help, Tony manages to stand, leaning heavily against the wall while Bucky winds a length of rope around his legs and waist, knotting it into a harness. “We’re so going to have kinky bondage sex the first chance we get.”

“I have no idea what that means,” Bucky says, kneeling down so Tony can climb onto his back, “but I vote yes.”

Once Tony’s secured to Bucky’s back, one arm around Bucky's neck and his good leg around Bucky's waist, they make their way out of the room, into the main complex. Bucky’s clearly been busy already, most of the corridors littered with bodies, and they don’t come across anyone until they reach the top level, where they’re suddenly surrounded.

Tony curses, shooting one of the HYDRA agents in the shoulder, and Bucky fells four more, but there are still half a dozen left, advancing steadily with their weapons cocked and ready. Tony’s hoping they have orders to capture him and Bucky alive, after all the trouble the higher-ups have gone through to breed them, but he doesn’t know for sure. Something’s clearly happened, putting the whole HYDRA crew on edge, and—

“Duck!” comes a voice Tony had, honestly and truly, thought he’d never hear again, and Bucky drops to the ground a moment before a familiar red, white, and blue blur whooshes over their heads, ricocheting off the wall, and HYDRA agents alike, until no one’s left standing.

“So,” Tony chokes out, holding out the hand not holding his gun, and yanking Steve into a tight hug, eyes burning again, “looks like falling from a flying death machine doesn’t kill you.”

“Apparently not,” Steve says, and at least he sounds just about as wrecked as Tony.

Steve pulls back when Bucky’s scent turns bitter, threatening. “Sorry ‘bout that. New bond,” Bucky says sheepishly. “And about the, you know. Kicking you out of a flyin’ death machine thing.”

Brows raised, Steve glances from Bucky, to Tony, to the bite on Tony’s neck, and back to Bucky. “Getting the hell out of here now, explanations later?” he suggests. “This place is about to blow. Sam’s on air surveillance, and Nat’s waiting at the quinjet, two klicks West from here.”

Bucky nods. “Let’s go.”

They burst out of the complex in a hail of bullets, and, miraculously, make it to the nearby forest with only a graze on Bucky’s part, and a couple of bruises on Tony and Steve. In relative safety now, Tony’s exhaustion—he is injured, and just went through a heat, after all—and the fact that he has not only found his soulmate, but also bonded, and is possibly pregnant, catch up with him, making him yawn, and his eyes droop as Bucky and Steve exchange information, comparing what they know, and bringing each other up to date on what’s happened since the successful launch of the Helicarriers.

“Hey,” Bucky whispers, some time later, lifting his hand to link his fingers with Tony’s, and then bringing their joint hands up to kiss Tony’s knuckles. Steve’s a couple of steps ahead, talking into his communicator, probably contacting Nat, and whoever this Sam guy is. “You doin’ okay, sweetheart?”

Tony presses his smile against the side of Bucky’s neck, and allows his eyes to flutter shut. “We will be.”