Putting all of the Avengers together under one roof was a recipe for disaster, and Steve really couldn’t understand how S.H.I.E.L.D failed to see that. When you combined the scientists, the testosterone and the rampant PTSD it was a miracle every day that Avengers tower remained standing.
Team dinners became a Thing after the Battle of New York. Team movie nights, poker nights and bowling nights soon followed. Steve wasn’t exactly sure who first suggested Team Drink-Each-Other-Under-The-Table night, but he had his suspicions it was Clint.
Bruce kindly declined the invitation, not wanting to risk the Other Guy coming out to play after a few rum and cokes. Steve was tempted to skip it too- but Bucky was practically vibrating with excitement about the prospect of going out, and Steve just couldn’t bear to disappoint him.
Bucky had hardly left the tower since he was brought in three months ago- his conditioning broken, along with his spirit and will to live. After two weeks of refusing to leave the spare room in Steve’s suite, flinching every time someone tried to talk to him and turning away meals, Natasha had strode into his room and not come out for six hours and forty two minutes.
Yes, Steve had timed it.
No one knew, exactly, what the two ex-assassins had talked about. No one dared ask, either. But after that Bucky had tentatively started joining Steve for his morning run, coming to team dinners on his good days, and starting therapy with an old VA buddy of Sams.
Fast forward three months and Bucky was almost his old self- well, as much as Steve was his old self. They had both been irrevocably changed, but at the heart of it all, they were still two boys from Brooklyn with no sense of self preservation and a habit of getting themselves into trouble.
Which is how, on the aforementioned team Drink-Each-Other-Under-The-Table night, Steve found himself being rather forcibly ejected from a bar, along with the rest of the Avengers and co, all in varying states of intoxication.
‘Tha’s just rude’ Jane slurred, leaning heavily against Darcy, who was using Clint’s bicep to keep herself upright.
‘We weren’t even being that loud’ Tony said grumpily.
‘I don’t think the volume was the issue’ Steve said dryly, grabbing the back of Sam’s shirt quickly to stop him from falling off the sidewalk, ‘I think it was more the “advanced” game of darts you were trying to play’.
‘Normal darts is much too easy for superheroes’ Wanda said innocently, ‘I was just trying to make it more interesting’.
Steve just sighed, he had a feeling Stark would be receiving a bill from the bar in the morning, demanding compensation.
‘Everyone in’ he said, ushering them all into cabs, ‘Meet back at the tower’.
In hindsight, perhaps he shouldn’t have let Bucky, Clint, Natasha and Darcy get into the same cab. Clint and Darcy were the dynamic duo of disaster. They were the ones who initiated tower wide prank wars, it was their fault that Stark now has to seal of the vents, and Steve couldn’t prove it, but he was pretty sure they were behind the word ‘juicy’ being written across the butt of his tac gear.
By all rational thought, the two of them should be completely at odds with the two former Russian assassins.
In reality, they got along like a house on fire. Literally, at one point there was a small fire (we just wanted to make s’mores Steve!).
Sam had begun calling Darcy and Clint The Assassin Whisperers whenever they were out of earshot.
So when they all arrived back at the tower, but the four of them were missing, Steve’s immediate reaction was to worry.
‘Jarvis, have the other four arrived yet?’.
‘Yes they have Captain Rogers, they arrived approximately four minutes before you did’.
‘And where are they now?’ Steve asked tentatively.
‘In Dr Banner’s lab, sir’.
‘Language’ Tony mumbled from where Wanda was now telekinetically holding him upright.
Steve deposited the rest of the team in the lounge, leaving Sam to dig out a bottle of whiskey that probably cost more than anything Steve had ever owned.
Clint, Bucky and Darcy were the easiest to find- they were huddled around a glass fronted cabinet in the first lab Steve came across, giggling and talking in hushed voices.
‘What on earth are you doing?’
All three jumped comically, a sign of exactly how wasted they were. Steve could never have snuck up on Bucky sober- or Clint, for that matter.
‘We’re looking for chloroform’ Darcy said, as if that was the most obvious thing in the world.
'And why, exactly, do you need chloroform at 3 am?’
‘It’s for you!’ Darcy said excitedly, bouncing on her toes and clapping her hands together.
Steve just blinked slowly, all three of them were grinning like proud cats that had just presented their master with a dead mouse.
‘You can’t get drunk anymore pal’ Bucky said, his Brooklyn drawl more pronounced than it had been since the 40s, ‘And that’s a real shame, so Darcy had an idea-’
‘Chloroform would get you drunk!’ Clint finished with a flourish, pulling a small bottle from the self.
‘Pretty sure all chloroform would do is knock me out’ Steve said, rolling his eyes, ‘Come on, the others are carrying the party on in the common room’.
‘But Steeeeeeve’ Darcy whined, ‘Are you not going to at least try it?’
Steve sighed, ‘Darce, all chloroform does is put you to sleep, and it probably wouldn’t even do that for me’.
‘But if you mixed it with alcohol-’
‘It would probably kill him’ came Natasha’s voice from behind him, and Steve barely repressed the urge to jump.
Drunk or not, Natasha was scary as shit.
‘I did, however, get something better’ she said with a slow smirk, producing a fancy glass bottle from somewhere (Steve wasn’t going to question where she’d been hiding it).
Steve just furrowed his brow in confusion, but Darcy and Clint crowed with delight.
‘Asgardian mead’ Natasha said, ‘Thor bought it when he was last here- we were saving it for your birthday…’
‘Asgardian mead?’ Steve repeated, feeling dubious, ‘Is it even safe?’
Darcy’s eyes were glinting mischievously and Steve had the sudden urge to run, ‘Oh yes’ she said slowly, ‘Thor assured us it’ll do for you what absinthe does to us regular squishy humans’.
‘Well ain’t that somethin’ Stevie’ Bucky grinned, ‘We’re going to get you wasted on alien booze’.
Steve swallowed heavily and reached out to take the bottle, uncorking it and taking a sniff. It smelled incredible- like honey and marzipan and the preserved cherries his Ma used to bring home from the market on special occasions.
Carefully, he took a sip- what was the worst that could happen?
(300 bucks in property damage, a video of him doing the robot posted to Vine, and the hangover to end all hangovers)
(definitely worth it though)