Charlie calmly blew on his coffee, seemingly indifferent to the quiet drama happening around him. In all honestly, though, he didn’t know how much longer his Zen was going to shield him against the horrors of his own mind.
Lesson one: Don’t ever try to exorcise unwanted mental images by imagining something even worse, specially anything involving Pierce. That shit not only will not be exorcised, it will also haunt you til death and beyond.
Poor Tim had started headdesking before his ass even touched the chair.
No amount of headdesking was going to help any of them. He understood the urge, though; there was just something about witnessing your virgin idol - misguided though he may be – being ravished before your eyes that felt wrong on a fundamental level.
Being able to understand it wasn't gonna stop him from strangling the next bastard who started wailing about his childhood being ruined.
Like they wouldn't have gladly ruined their childhood themselves if given the chance. They just resented Stark for getting there first.
Feeling a tick developing under his right eye as a wail rang out, he turned around and saw a twenty-something kid sobbing on an exasperated-looking girl’s shoulder. “Who let the kid in?”
Drake made a face.“No one. He’s SHIELD-SHIELD. Heard we were having a hall-wide support group here or something.”
Will awwwed. “Are we gonna get badges?”
“Shut up, it’s cathartic.”
“Hell yeah, we can call it My-Poor-Virgin-Eyes Club or something!”
At that, the SHIELD-SHIELD kid gave another muffled wail.
Charlie kinda hoped the girl would smother him like she obviously wanted to. No one would report her. They wouldn’t tattletale. Ok, they so would, but she’d ~Survive! And I’ll stay alive! I still got all my life to live and...~
What the heck was it with people and break-up songs today, Charlie mused as Bill the amateur continued to yell along with the song which was loud enough to be heard through his headphones. Nothing beat Farhaad’s version of ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’ though - which was more appropriate in his opinion - the guy could sing. It also kinda matched with the beat of Tim's headdesking as it gained speed.
Heard his buddy fainted on the spot.” Alex said with a conspiratorial nudge.
“They’d gotten rather acrobatic on the way down,” he added with a brief but meaningful downward look.
Oh. Shit. The money doubled. When was this day going to end.
Drake snorted. “Lucky bastards.”
Eyeing the future head patient, Will huffed. “He’s too straight for his own good. And you all owe me 100 bucks by the way. Fuck you too, Charlie - don’t think I didn't see the finger. I mean you should be honoured, how many people can claim they saw Cap and Iron Man...” here he paused to make inexplicable grunting sounds accompanied by exaggerated thrusting and yanking combo gestures.
Taking pity on the unwise and the foolish, Charlie patted Drake on the back as he sputtered on his mouthful of coffee. With Will you learned early to watch yourself around edibles. “Just say ‘getting it on’, dude.”
Alex did a quick head count. “Fourteen poor suffering souls.” Catching Will's dreamy expression he amended. “...minus one.”
“I totally saw everything.” Will protested
“You don’t count. You’re not suffering.”
Alex looked confused for a moment, before rolling his eyes. “SHIELD-SHIELD kid doesn’t count.
“I meant myself.” Drake said with a bright smile.
Alex’s look of utter betrayal as Drake and Will high-fived was an expressionist artist's wet dream material.
“It’ll make for a good suing case.”
“It won't. According to latest Shield-wide statement: No one saw nothing.”
Following his line of sight they all saw Will’s words glowing mockingly at them from the hall’s big ass screen.
They couldn’t even complain about it now. Gotta love HYDRA’s totally mature and passive-aggressive way of getting the ‘fuck you, Stark’ across. At least there was someone worse off than they were.
Sitting in a corner, Boss was emitting the most powerful combination of ‘Don't touch me’ and ‘may Hydra devour you all, you fuckers’ to date.
Someone was gonna explode on Pierce ass, Charlie thought rather uncharitably, then nearly snorted the coffee out through his nose when his mind shrieked at the unwanted mental image.
Fuck his life. At this rate he was going to turn into Boss with his thing for turtles - fuck!
He saw Will give him a suspiciously sympathising look through his watering eyes as he wiped the coffee off his chin. His suspicion was proved justified when the asshole held his mobile out.
“Yo, who does this remind you of?”
Cue Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2003 opening theme song.
As his very mature friends collapsed into shaking, wheezing pile of future dead meat (if Crippler’s glare was any indication), Charlie was experiencing another kind of hysterics entirely.
How did no one notice?
That and an aneurysm.
“What’s wrong with his face?”
“Did I break him?”
Charlie wasn’t sure what would come out his mouth if he even could unclench his jaw. Most likely a scream. So he just jabbed his finger at the phone's screen - repeatedly.
Sharing a look, the others leaned forward warily to find out the cause of his latest freak out. There was a long pause as they checked and re-checked what their eyes saw and their mind empathetically noooped at.
Slumping back in his chair, Drake promptly downed his coffee before snatching Charlie’s and downing it, too.
At last Alex cleared his throat. “...Just to be clear. We went through enough stress to shave a good few years off our life expectancy, experienced a temporary faith crisis and probably nearly legged it in the face of His Sainthood - shut up, we all did - were flashed things we would have preferred to never see, only to find out we got punked on April the 1st?”
They all took a moment to digest that.
“Why are you whispering?” All but Will, who didn’t look all that fazed.
“Because it’s a hushed matter.” Alex deadpanned.
“Don’t want anyone to go off on anyone’s ass now, do we?” Will asked Charlie with a wink.
How the fu-
“Yes, now shut up and join us in lamenting the cruel fate and pondering on the whys of such wicked event befalling us.”
“Deep stuff.” Will nodded sagely. “I won the bet though.”
Charlie felt completely justified in tasering the smug bastard.
~~ Bonus ~~
“Ok, so who do you thin-”
“Oh hell no, I’m not having this conversation with you again.”
“No.” Crippler sent him a glare which promised a long road to death paved with pain and suffering, making the agents behind him to slowly back away. Rumlow simply ignored it.
“I mean, doesn’t it fuck with your mind that a century old jail-bait and a half-his-age sugar daddy got together, and no one can figure out who the cradle robber is?”
Somehow when he wasn’t looking, Crippler’s look of pain and destruction had upgraded to currently-resisting-the-urge-to-punch-your-cyanide-tooth-down-your-throat.
Rumlow smiled back pleasantly.
“No one is robbing anyone's cradle; they're both grown ass men.” Crippler said in the tone of someone who knew his logic would not win, but who tried anyway.
“Who decided a SHIELD-wide prank was a thing that grown-ups do, sure.”
“The more mature one is it, then.” 'It' being the cradle robber, not that he would admit it. “Take your pick and leave me alone.”
“Between Captain Former Virgin Gone Wild, and Tony Stark?”
“Then they’re both doing it.” Crippler grunted.
Rumlow smirked. “I kinda figured.”
Crippler scowled. “I mean the robbing.”
Rumlow nearly burst a lung trying to contain his cackle. “That usually happens when one does it.” Despite his best effort a snort left him at seeing his friend’s expression.
Thankfully his watch happened to beep just then.
Coughing once to get the shake out of his voice while avoiding Crippler’s gaze, he answered the call.
It was Pierce. Of course. Who else could it be.
Fighting the urge to roll his eyes, he listened while Pierce freaked out on him. “Sir, you don’t need to shout. …Just- No, Sir. …No-one talked to him. No-” Giving up on professionalism, he gave him the finger. It made him feel better.
Obviously it didn’t last.
“Who did what.” He said faintly, it didn’t come out as a question.
But that wasn’t the end of it, his jaw went slack and all blood left his face as Pierce continued to yell.
Holy fuck, Rumlow mouthed to Crippler, even as he grabbed his friend’s elbow and started running. “Get everyone! The Asset got loose on Stark’s ass!”
Figures that Cap’s loss of virginity is the thing that cures the Winter Soldier’s amnesia.
They were so fucked.