Bucky tossed his head on his pillow, whimpering slightly in reaction to the images playing on the back of his eyelids. His fingers locked with the bed sheets, trying to find some sort of relief for the terror he was feeling.
"Who the hell is Bucky?"
Rain could be heard splashing against the window, the clock read 4:45. Buck turned over on his bed, sweating profusely and ducking his head down into the pillow to try and block out his nightmares.
Steve gasped for air as he was kicked back into an abandoned vehicle behind him before the Winter Soldier pulled a knife out from its sheath, he put his arms up in defense as the blade came straight towards his head, causing it to dig into the side of the van. Magnetic rumbles erupted in his ears as the Winter Soldier used his prosthetic to slide the knife towards Steve's throat, ripping through the car metal like butter. Steve ducked under the blade and stared into his old friends' eyes with fear and determination.
Bucky tossed once more, his dreams becoming louder and quicker, as one after another more terrors played themselves in no order whatsoever.
"Please, don't make me do this."
More clouds covered the dark sky, pelting the rooftops with their tears, as Bucky started to form his own tears in his chaotic slumber.
Blood spewed from the back of Steve's thigh, he groaned in pain but he kept climbing.
Steve yelped as the bullet tagged his arm, throwing him off balance, but he pushed through and managed to get back to his objective. He pulled out a green chip from his pocket and reached forward to put it into place.
Steve clutched his abdomen and fell to his knees, as blood painted the whites of his uniform red.
Bucky stayed still in his bed for one moment to whisper his friend's name. "Steve.." It was immediately followed by a faint crackle of thunder from a few miles away.
"You're my mission." The soldier growled before he pelted Steve with his metal arm.
"You're. My. Mission!"
"Steve!" Bucky called out in his sleep, begging for himself to stop. He could only watch as the nightmare pulled him in with no intention of letting go. Words collided with sounds of metal, and Bucky felt the images of his alter ego overflow his brain.
"I'm with ya 'till the end of the line. " Steve choked out, broken and bleeding.
Thunder illuminated the darkness of the room, and Buck leaped out of his sleep gasping for air and sweat dripping down his forehead. With a quick look around the room he felt a wave of relief wash over him as he recognized where he was, and more importantly - who he was. He swept his legs off the bed and slowly stood to his feet, deciding on where he would go, because he wouldn't dare go back to sleep. He opened his door with a sigh before leaving his room behind, walking past another bedroom door. He lingered for a moment, staring at the doorknob with concern, his fingers twitched with the urge to open it. He cursed himself for being paranoid and stepped forward to open the door, it clicked quietly and Bucky stuck his head in for a glance at the room. After a few moments he stepped out quietly, feeling better now that he assured himself - Steve was okay.
The door closed with a soft thunk and was followed by leaving footsteps, Steve's eyes fluttered opened and dazedly found their way towards the time.
Steve yawned and sat up and rubbed the sleep from his eyes, wondering why he was awake at such an hour. His gaze traveled to the door, and although he didn't know what woke him he stood up to open it anyways. He peeked down the hallway, towards the "big window", and smiled softly. As if he was a cat, Bucky sat perched on the window still with his knees pulled up to his chest, staring out onto the foggy lamp-lit streets that were being soaked in sheets of rain.
"I didn't mean to wake you." He said, without taking his eyes away from the window.
Steve walked quietly behind him to take a look outside himself, letting a moment pass before he spoke up. "Another nightmare?"
Silence. "Every time." He replied.
Steve stood there for a moment glancing down at his toes, knowing exactly what he was gonna say next but waiting a second longer to think. "It's not your fault, Buck." He said softly. "It wasn't you."
Bucky continued to stare out the window, nodding his head slightly. "But yet I still remember doing it."
The two remained in silence, watching cars go by with their windshield wipers on full speed, and listening to the quiet rumbles of thunder in the distance.
"What was it this time?" Steve asked.
Bucky took his eyes off the window for the first time, looking up at Steve. "You." He said, staring straight into his eyes. Steve sighed and sat down on the windowsill next to him, and Bucky's eyes returned to the foggy streets of New York. "I shouldn't be here." He mumbled.
"Don't say that. I couldn't let you put yourself back under." Steve warned. He reached out and put his hand on Buck's knee comfortingly. "I needed you here..." He mumbled. "I couldn't lose you again."
"You're gonna lose a whole lot more with me staying here." Buck said. "That stuff is still in me... What if... What if one day I dream of Hydra? What will we do then? All I need is for someone to say those god damn words..." He looked up at Steve, who gazed at him with concern and comfort. "That's all I need in order to lose you."
"You won't lose me."
Buck scoffed and looked back out the window. "I know your trying to to help me but sometimes I think you might actually believe the shit that comes out of your mouth."
"I do." Steve said sternly, sitting forward to rest his hands on Buck's shoulders. "I've meant every word I've ever said to you. I remember every promise, and I remember promising you that I'd be with you 'till the end of the line.'" Buck continued to look out the window but Steve put his palm against his cheek and urged him to meet his gaze, and he did. Ocean eyes met diamond ones and they lingered like that for what seemed like years until Steve spoke again. "So 'till the end of the line it is." He promised.
Bucky dropped his legs from the windowsill and dove straight into Steve's arms, making sure to mind his cold prosthetic on his warm skin. They stood there for a while, embracing each other and making one another feel safer. "Come sleep in my room." Steve murmured softly.
"It's like 5:30." Bucky mentioned.
"That means we have a half hour to nap." Steve smiled.
"And that's coming from Mr. bright and early?"
"Just hush and get in the bed."
Buck smiled, finally feeling a lot better than he did since he'd returned from Wakanda, and with that in mind he managed to sleep peacefully in the warmth of Steve's presence. Steve might have been an hour late to his morning run, but when he arrived back to his apartment to see a smile on Buck's face - he figured it was worth the time.