Who had decided that letting Nat pick the latest team-building exercise would be a good idea? Sam can say very literally that he'd like to shoot them - it's not like the gun he's holding would do them any damage, and it might be cathartic for him.
Laser tag. What on earth. Sam hasn't played laser tag since he was in high school. And that one time he and his college buddies had got drunk on cheap ouzo. Oh, and when his squad had been on layover in Munich with six hours to kill.
Still. It has a very high school feel to it, even if the place they'd rented out is about a thousand times more high-tech than any other laser-tag dome Sam's ever seen. The ceiling's painted to look like a real sky, and there's about twenty different kinds of terrain spread throughout the arena.
This better not send anyone into any kind of flashback, and Sam's including himself in that hope. But they've been through training simulations more realistic than this, not to mention more than a few actual battles, so he isn't going to worry too much.
There are rules, of course - no misuse of superpowers is the main one, but that still leaves a hell of a lot of loopholes for people like Bucky. Even without his left arm – he and Nat had rigged up a complicated harness as a way for him to hold his gun steady one-handed, until Bucky gets comfortable enough with the idea of having something attached to him to think about another prothesis - he can shoot straighter than pretty much anyone else in the world.
Only straight thing I've ever been any good at, he'd said to Sam once, back when they were still in the weird, awkward-flirting phase of their relationship.
Steve isn't any better than Bucky, really, because it's not like he can switch off his enhanced senses – and Nat's got some claim to metahuman status, even though she never talks about it; and Clint's accuracy might be sheer talent and practice, but it's very fucking difficult to believe that when you watch him sink arrow after arrow into bullseyes so small Sam can hardly see them.
He isn't even going to start thinking about Wanda, because he still hasn't figured out what half her powers can do. Isn't even sure she knows for sure, which is a terrifying thought that he tries to ignore whenever it pops up in his head.
Sam really wishes that there was just one other completely regular human along for the ride. Rhodey, maybe, or Scott.
But it's just him. He's pretty much resigned himself to losing, but he's determined to take someone else down with him. Probably Steve or Clint – neither of them are as comfortable using a gun as they pretend to be; their hands remember their shield and bow too well.
He catches movement out of the corner of his eye, and his body's already finding cover before his brain's caught up. It's Bucky, and Sam knows that he isn't doing nearly a good enough job of hiding to fool the former Winter Soldier, but for some reason he hasn't been shot yet.
Maybe he can use that to his advantage.
“Hey,” Sam hisses, knowing his voice will carry enough for Bucky to pick up on it. “Come here a second.”
Bucky does, ducking behind the plastic wall Sam's leaning himself against. “What is it?”
Sam doesn't answer, at least not with words.
He draws Bucky closer, left hand resting lightly on the back of his head, leans in, until there's barely an inch of space between them – and then he moves his right hand, so that his gun's pressed up against Bucky's back.
He doesn't fire.
He isn't going to shoot without warning, not like this.
Bucky could disarm him in seconds if he wanted to, though, and all he does is move his head slightly, so that he ends up kissing Sam's cheek instead of his lips. Sam pulls the trigger, and hears the beep of the jacket provided by the arena as it registers the hit.
“Fuck you, Wilson,” Bucky says, lips still pressed against Sam's skin.
But Sam knows the feeling of Bucky's mouth when it's curved into a smile, and he grins back, even though Bucky won't be able to see it. “I wasn't cheating,” he points out, because he hadn't been. “Unless you're counting my flirting skills as a superpower?”
Bucky laughs, very quietly – Sam feels more than hears it, really. “Reckon they should be one.” He keeps his torso pressed against Sam's, not seeming uneasy with the contact at all. “Well, you got me. Guess I should go shoot Clint again, that's always fun.”
“Or,” Sam says slowly, drawing the word out until Bucky pulls back and makes eye contact again. “We could team up.”
He knows Bucky's answer already, from the way his eyes gleam in the half-light.
Bucky taps his fingers against his gun, a quick motion that could be Morse code, muscle memory of some long-ago piano lesson, or nothing at all. “Steve'll be easy,” he says, and his expression isn't the calculation of the Soldier, just the look of a soldier thinking up tactics. “He thinks changing direction every five minutes means he isn't predictable.” Bucky's tone is hilariously similar to that of a fond parent or older brother; Sam can almost hear the unspoken bless his heart at the end of the sentence. “And Nat and Clint will have gone high,” Bucky continues, speaking quiet enough that even Sam, inches away, can only just hear the words. “You cover the skies, I'll stay low. We'll deal with Wanda together, when we find her.”
You cover the skies. Sam's shoulders ache for half a moment with the weight of absent wings. Then he shakes himself, grips his gun tight, and leans back in to give Bucky a swift, fierce kiss.
“For luck,” he says, knowing they don't need it.