You motion Steve to mute the comms momentarily.
“What is it, Y/N?”
“If we can’t...if we can’t disarm the weapons without risking detonation, we have to do everything we can to minimize the collateral damage.”
Steve unmutes the comms, and the two of you begin to work on doing what you can with the container in front of you.
With the war finally over, Peggy was finally back home in New York. She immediately went to your apartment and began the process of clearing your things before your landlord decided to throw it all away. By order of the government, Peggy could clear your things, and she was glad. She didn’t want anyone else touching what was yours. It was after the fifth day of clearing your things and returning to her own apartment, did she see someone waiting for her.
It was Officer Phillips, and he held a box that belonged to you.
“I took the liberty of cleaning out her locker. There’s one letter addressed to you.”
When he left, Peggy set the box aside, and it remained untouched for three months, except for the ring that sat on top.
It wasn’t as though she wasn’t ready to read what was possibly your final words to her. But the truth was that she didn’t want you thinking that she gave up on you ever coming home to her. Even when she had a mission to complete, she’d still head over to that ballroom and look for you in the crowd. Every Saturday night. You never gave up on her, so why would she give up on you now?
There was still a chance that you and Steve had survived and were merely taking a little longer to come home. Just a little while longer, Peggy would tell herself.
It was towards the second year after you and Steve had sacrificed your lives when Peggy opened the letter.
Right now, you are sleeping next to me, and even though we are in the middle of a war, in your arms and in bed beside you, I find myself at the kind of peace, many go their whole lives searching for. It is in these secret moments with you that I find yet another reason to fight for. Forgive me, for not having any sense of mind to make several drafts and giving you a much more polished version of these thoughts. I never know when I’ll have the time to write them, and so I take them as I can.
War can either tear people apart or bring them together, and I am glad it was the latter for us. War also makes us grow older and more appreciative of every day that we are fortunate to have on this earth. And I want you to know that through everything, you are the only one I would fight alongside with, no matter the difficulty of the mission, and the only one I will ever let my guard down for. You are one of a kind.
What I have been meaning to say is that I want to be a part of your life after the war ends, if you’ll allow me the privilege of doing so. And perhaps one day, you’ll consider marrying me. I don’t mean marriage with the woman subservient to the man. I mean a marriage where you and I are equals, just like we have always treated each other as such.
And if for some reason, I don’t make it, I wish that you meet the kind of love that makes you smile both inside and out. I wish that you find as much joy and peace because it is nothing short than what you deserve. I wish you success in all your endeavors. Most of all, I wish that should you ever think of me, that it is not my ghost that haunts you, but rather, it is the memories that you and I shared that shield you on your worst days.
PS. The ring is yours to do what you please – whether you sell it, give it away, throw it, or keep it.
At the end of your letter to her, Peggy allowed herself to break down and let all the hurt and anger escape through her cries.
When she promised you forever, a few weeks before you and Steve had made the ultimate sacrifice, she had no way of knowing that forever would never come to pass. And on nights like tonight that are like the ones the two of you would look up at the moon, she’ll think of the very last conversation you had.
“Let me get Howard. He’ll know what to do.”
“There’s not enough time, Peggy. If Y/N and I don’t…a lot of people are going to die.”
“My love, this is our choice. Please understand.”
Everyone’s comms are now off, including Steve’s, to allow the two of you to say your final words.
“I’ll need a raincheck on that dance.”
“Alright, a week next Saturday at the Stork Club.”
“Eight o’clock on the dot. Don’t you dare be late. Understood?”
“You know my rhythm isn’t up to par.”
“I’ll show you how. Just be there.”
“We’ll have to ask the band play something slow to account on our…”
“Y/N? Y/N? Y/N? Steve? Y/N?”
And she wonders what your last thoughts were when communications broke down. She wonders what you last saw before you and Steve were never seen again. She had no way of knowing that it was a picture of her that you looked at even as ice broke through the plane.
“Easy there, Agent Y/N. You and Captain America haven’t exactly been using your limbs for almost 70 years.”
“I wouldn’t have said that, Doc.”
You immediately started to take off the wires attached to your body. You needed to get out of here. You needed to see your Peggy.
“Agent Y/N! You have no need to go anywhere right now.”
“Like hell! Where’s Agent Carter? Is she still alive?”
“Doc, you should leave for now. Y/N, look at me. After you get checked out, you have my word we’ll go see Peggy.”
Your mind was still reeling that 70 years had flown by.
“Steve, how long have you been awake?”
“Just for the past ten hours. And you know, I wouldn’t go see Peggy without you. It should only take a few hours for them to check you completely, and like I said, I promise we’ll go straight to Peggy. Believe me, I miss her too.
But after you were checked, you realized that you were being selfish. The woman you loved aged and most likely had a family. And what if you and Steve gave her a heart attack? After all, the two of you still looked the same as you did all those years ago. But damn it all to hell, you wanted to be selfish for even a few seconds. Just to see her. To hold her. To honor her request of that dance the two of you were going to have.
It took a few weeks of going back and forth on what decision to make before you decided on seeing her, with the promise of you leaving if she asked you to. Steve changed his mind about seeing Peggy. You became surer of your choice.
“Y/N? Is that really you?”
“Yes, Peggy. It is.”
“It’s been so long since I’ve seen your face, and you haven’t aged a bit.”
“The ice helped preserve us. Is it alright that I came?”
“Oh, Y/N. Of course, it is! I have missed you. What made you come see me?”
“I wanted to honor my promise to you about that dance. I wanted to see how the years have treated you. I wanted to see how you’re doing.”
“I got married.”
“Yes, a son and a daughter. Several grandchildren and even a great grandchild.”
“And your husband? Was he good to you?”
“He was the only man I truly loved. Just like you were the only woman I could ever love, Y/N. You know my husband knew about you. He never once felt threatened. He understood of our love. He was kind like that.”
“I am happy that you had such a wonderful husband. I worried when I woke up. If you were able to find love again. Can you ever forgive me?”
“Whatever for, darling?”
“For not returning sooner. For not loving you enough back then. For not showing up that Saturday at the club.”
“There is absolutely nothing to forgive, Y/N. I have been quite fortunate to have led a good life. And finding that letter with the ring you left for me, it gave me the closure I never knew I would need. As I got older and after the Stork Club was torn down, I still had hope that you would return. I’m afraid I can’t dance, but if you could sing to me like you did all those years ago, I would very much like it.”
“Anything for you, Peggy.”
When she offers her hand to you, you hold on to it and start to sing. And when you finish, she thanks you.
“Oh, I’m sorry. Do I know you?”
You sadly smile at the realization that Peggy had Alzheimer’s.
“You used to. I’m an old friend. But if you’d let me, I’d like to get to know you, all over again.”
And for the next few remaining years of her life, you would come visit her twice a week, and sing to her. And every time you would sing, she’d ask you who you were. But to you, despite the pain, she’d always be your forever.