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Blame The Night

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I'll get it if you need it,
I'll search if you don't see it,
You're thirsty, I'll be rain,
You get hurt, I'll take your pain.

I know you don't believe it,
But I said it and I still mean it,
When you heard what I told you,
When you get worried I'll be your soldier.


- Soldier (by Gavin DeGraw)



He liked coming to laundromats at night. When the place was deserted, when Sam was asleep and he had nothing to do but stare at his own blank ceiling, trying not to let his inner demons catch up with him - doing the laundry seemed to help. The job was menial, inconsequential, but the task of maneuvering around the machines and remembering how to work the different types of washing machines and dryers required all the focus that his brain could muster. The whirring sounds of the blades working, of clothes being wrung out and dried, white noise in the background not interspersed with unnecessary chatter of other human beings helped clear his mind.

In the three weeks that they spent in Hanoi trying to chase dead ends, he spends every night in the laundromat two buildings down from his hotel. He washed and dried all his clothes. When he was done with his own, he started washing Sam’s, and then after that he washed his all over again. His shirts had shrunk a little, and he’d ripped a sleeve or two while flexing his arms, but tight shirts and ripped fabric was worth the hours of silence he got - hours of peace and quiet, with no worlds to save or brain-washed assassins/former best friends to hunt down.

He leaned back in his chair and folded his arms behind his head to cushion it from the harsh cold metal of the chair, his eyes fluttering shut as the gentle hum of the machines washed over him.

And then he heard it.

He’d spent three weeks - twenty one nights in this place undisturbed. Twenty one nights without a soul in the dimly lit, low ceiling room. He tensed, his ears straining. For a few moments he heard nothing above the whirring of the machines, and just as he thought he had imagined it, he heard it again.

It was a soft rustle, like the fabric of the pants rubbing together while walking, mixed with quiet footfalls that only his enhanced hearing could pick up on. The sounds grew closer as his visitor neared. Faster than lightning, he was out of his seat and turned around, swinging his arm out to punch the intruder, but he misjudged their size. The other person ducked, and his fist hit air, throwing him a little off balance, and then he caught sight of the flaming red hair and the familiar lithe figure.

He quickly reached out and grabbed her arms, holding her in place. “Romanoff?”

“Hey, Cap,” she grinned up at him, her green eyes twinkling. She was wearing her yellow jacket over her striped shirt and skinny jeans, and a pair of boots that did wonders to her long and lean legs. Legs that immediately captured his attention.

Steve brought his gaze back to hers to find his perusal of her hadn’t gone unnoticed. She gave him a knowing smirk that he chose to ignore. “What are you doing here?” he asked, letting go of her.

“Reminding you why you should be missing me,” she said casually, walking away from him and towards his laundry basket, checking his detergent brand, looking through his clothes. “You know, when you expect a guy to call you and he doesn’t, you start getting worried.”

He crossed his arms across his chest. “I thought you were getting a new identity.”

“And I thought I told you I was counting on it taking some time. Learn to take a hint, Rogers,” she retorted, sparing him a glance before lifting some clothes from the basket. “Blue jeans, white t-shirt, red boxers - wow, you wear red, blue and white all the time, don’t you?” Her voice was light, and she smirked at him teasingly.

He strode up to her and snatched the pile of clothes from her hands. “They're Sam’s,” he said, stuffing them into an empty machine.

“Right, of course they are,” she said, handing more clothes to him from his basket to put in the machine. “I heard you two are like a cohabitating couple now.”

His face was turned away from her, but she saw his ears turn pink as he blushed. “We're not like... that .”

She followed him as he cleared out another machine and started putting the wet but now clean clothes into a dryer. She folded her arms across her chest and leaned back against an empty machine, crossing her ankles and tilting her head slightly as, lips pursed, she studied him. He felt a little subconscious as her intense, all seeing gaze roved over him, and nervously scratched his chin.

“You need some help?” she asked.

He glanced at her as he closed the dryer, filled to the brim with clothes. “With laundry? I may be 90 years old, but I think I know how to turn a few buttons.”

She rolled her eyes, her lips tugging with a smile. “Dryer works better when only filled two-thirds with clothes,” she commented.

His face fell a little, and he looked down at the machine with a soft “Oh,” disappointed with himself for messing up the most menial of tasks. Opening the machine, he started taking a few clothes out. “Guess I'm not completely adept at doing my own laundry yet.”

She gave him a soft smile. “I meant with Barnes,” she said.

“I'm good,” he said, voice flat, not looking at her as he inserted a coin into the machine. The whirring of the dryer blades mixed with the other sounds in the small room.  

Natasha straightened up and uncrossed her arms, walking over to him. “Are you really?” She asked, voice rising. “Can you seriously tell me you're completely okay and that you don't need anyone?”

His entire body was tense and taut as he put his hands on the dryer, his palms curled over the edges, and he dropped his head in frustration. “Is this an intervention? Sam call you?”

“He didn't have to,” she said softly, placing a hand on his shoulder, rubbing her thumb over the tense muscles in small comfort. “You really think I haven't been keeping an eye on you myself?”

When he didn't look at her, didn't reply, she continued. “You're spiraling, Steve. Look at you! You're doing laundry at 1 a.m. every night. You're not sleeping. You're not eating… you've been through a lot of trauma to deal with it alone and-”

He exhaled sharply and jerked up, making her drop her hand in the process. “This isn't PTSD,” he growled.

She didn't flinch. “I'm not saying it is.” Very gently, hesitantly, as if dealing with a skittish, frightened deer, she lifted both her hands, palms open and facing him in a gesture of truce. He stared at them as they lightly rested on his chest, stiffening impossibly further at the contact. “You're tense. Frustrated.” She slowly moved her hands up, tracing the planes of his chest, his hard abs through the thin material of his cotton shirt, and his eyes fluttered shut. “You need to do something. This sitting around and waiting for a clue to pop up is killing you. You crave action. All this pent up adrenaline inside you - you need to release it.”

His hands shot up and grabbed her wrists as they reached his shoulders in a vice like grip. His fingers dug into her soft flesh as he glared at her with a hard look. “Is that what this is about? You're going to help me find release?”

The way he said it - the harsh tone, the sneer and disgust on his lips, the hard, distrusting glare in his eyes - pinched her. She felt the stab of hurt deep inside her, but she pushed her own feelings down. “Steve, please, just let me help you,” she pleaded. “You wanted a friend, you trusted me - trust me now . Tell me what you need.”

He didn't reply, just blankly stared at her, as if not comprehending her words, but his grip on her hands loosened. She moved her hands to cup his face. “You want to fight away the frustration? You want a sparring partner who can keep up with you?” She paused, biting her lip. “You want to fuck it out?”

His breathe hitched at the word, the only indication that he'd been listening to her. She tried again. “We're friends, Steve. Talk to me. Please .”

He didn't need to. He screwed his eyes shut, clenched his jaw hard for a moment, before opening them again. The heat and lust was blatant in his gaze. It made her own breath catch. Butterflies worked themselves into a frenzy in her stomach in anticipation.

She was nervous . But a slow rush of excitement filled her. Her tongue darted out to wet her suddenly dry lips, drawing his gaze to them. She pushed herself up on her toes, linking her fingers behind his neck, and his own large palms settled hesitantly on her hips, their warmth seeping through the layers of clothes and heating her from the inside.

He bent down slowly, and his hands travelled slowly up the curve of her waist. Their touch was light, their weight heavy, but even the softest of touches made her arch into him. She pressed closer to him - Sweet Jesus he was hard everywhere . He was all broad and rippling muscles against her soft, malleable flesh, and it was making her toes curl.

He crowded in around her, engulfing her, and their breaths came out in short staccatos. His face hovered over hers, the air between them hot and heavy, his breath ghosting over her lips.

One large hand moved to her back and splayed open, covering the entire expanse of it and pushing her closer to him. She felt the hard bulge in his pants press into her thighs and grow in desire for her. The sound of her own blood pounding in her veins filled her ears. “Steve…” she whimpered, pushing her hands into his hair and pulling him down towards her further.

His fingers curled into her jacket, and he groaned in response. His hips moved involuntarily, grinding into her thighs. She felt shivers move up her spine, the length if her arms, leaving a trail of searing heat in their wake, spreading through her long neck and warming her face.

She felt lightheaded, dizzy, drunk on him, and - holy mother of Christ - they hadn't even kissed yet.

She looked up at him from under her eyelashes and met his gaze. All her feelings - the heat, the want, the drunk headiness, all seemed reflected in his blue orbs and wide pupils.

“Tasha…” he groaned, his voice low and rough, and he closed the tiny distance between them but only to rest his forehead against hers. His nose bumped against hers, and he ran the tip of his nose along the length of hers, inhaling, his lips brushing her cheeks and - God, his skin was electrifying. She was burning under his touch, ready to explode.

God, if this was what it felt like between them right now, when they'd only been touching, when they hadn't even kissed, she wondered what being with Steve would be like.

“Steve,” she whimpered, begging, her voice a tiny whisper that felt too loud, “please.”

He knew what she was asking. He was painfully aware of her - of every inch of her body pressed into his, her soft, yielding flesh burrowing into his planes, the heat of her palms fisted in his hair. He wanted it - God, did he want it - and he knew she did too, but he needed to ask her. “Are you sure?” he said, voice gravelly with lust.

Their lips hovered inches from each other, their breaths mingling, heavy with burning desire. They were so close - so close. The need to feel her lips against his once again was incessant. They'd kissed once - a quick, soft, chaste brush of lips in an adrenaline fueled tense situation. It wasn't much - he couldn't even remember what her lips felt like, what they tasted like, and now, he wanted to learn it all. He wanted to memorise the feeling of her against him, the taste of her lips on his, the brush of her breath on him. He wanted to hear her moan and whimper and scream out his name and he wanted to devour her cries. The anticipation of it was killing him, and he could see her itching with excitement and the torturous wait.

He hovered over her, teasing, taunting, so close. She whimpered, a soft desperate plea, and he broke.

His lips came crashing down on hers. This wasn't soft or chaste. This kiss was open and deep and raw . It was everything .

Her eyes fluttered shut and she instantly opened up to him, and he angled her head to deepen the kiss. He groaned, the sound of it vibrating through his entire body and resonating deep within her. She moaned, squeezing her thighs, pushing herself closer till the space between them was nonexistent. His lips were devouring her - rough, filled with unbridled need and desire, and Natasha gave as good as she got, drinking him in with equal abandon.

His arms wrapped around her - they were big and warm and hard and just the feeling of his bulging biceps wrapping around her tiny frame was so erotic - and then he slammed her into the nearest surface.

The washing machine.

Her hips jerked, the vibrations from the machine travelling into her, sending white hot pleasure to her very core and she cried out against his lips. It grounded her a little as she realised where they were.

She was in a laundromat. In the middle of the night. Trapped between a fucking washing machine and Captain fucking America . Making out like there was no tomorrow.

Holy fuck .

She didn’t give a flying fuck because Steve's mouth demanded her attention, nibbling at her lower lip, and she whimpered into him, pulling his tongue into her mouth and sucking on it. They were both ravaging each other, and it was a battle of dominance between them as they sucked and tugged and pulled at each other as they desperately sought pleasure.

Her sex was aching and wet, and she clawed at his legs with her feet and then he was pushing her jacket off and bending down to wrap his hands around her calves and lifting her. They managed to not break their kiss as her legs cradled his hips and he settled against her, the two of them fitting perfectly like pieces of a puzzle. His hard erection pressed right into her centre, and she groaned. She clutched her hips tighter around him, rubbing against him, and his own pelvis jerked into her, causing delicious friction.

Before she realised what he was doing, he set her on top of the washing machine, her body still entangled with his, and she gasped and jumped at the stimulation that the vibrations of the machine provided. His hips thrust into her, his erection straining in the tight confines of the denim.

“Oh… God… Steve…” She choked out, gasping and crying as he started moving against her, grinding his length into her covered sex. She broke the kiss, her head falling back, and he dragged his lips down the side of her jaw and the arch of her neck. Her tank top provided him with ample skin to kiss and touch, and he didn't waste the opportunity.

Natasha writhed underneath him, her wetness seeping through her clothes, the scent of her arousal filling his nose. Her nails scraped over his scalp, and it made him go wild with desire and need. He set a harder pace, thrusting up in between her legs, rubbing into her, and the vibrations from the machine sent shocks of pleasure straight to her core.

She was powerless against him. His next thrust was perfect as it hit right in her centre, bumping against her clit through her denim jeans, and the machine rumbled underneath her, making her arch and keen.

He grunted something unintelligible, and she couldn’t hear him over the pounding of her own heart, but he wrapped himself around her and claimed her lips once again, swallowing her cries, his cheeks and sharp jawline scraping hers. They were moving together, hard and fast, and it didn't matter that there were two sets of jeans between them because the pleasure was definitely not diminished or muted. He was hot over and around her, and she was burning up from the inside as he pushed against her. Her hands sprawled over his back, urging him closer as she lifted her hips to meet him.

She felt the heat building, rising growing hotter and hotter and…

Natasha exploded under him, her eyes screwing shut as pleasure radiated through her in waves, and he swallowed her cries, moving his hips faster as he sought his own release. The machine rumbled underneath her, and he held her tighter and moved into her and it only sent her higher as she came apart underneath him again, his name a litany on her lips.

It barely took a few thrusts before he was falling over the edge with her. He groaned long and loud, his head thrown back, jaw clenched and the skin pulled taut over his neck. His veins stood out, and even delirious with pleasure, she couldn’t help but lean forward and wrap her lips around his Adam's apple and just suck .

He gasped and his hips stuttered against her, and they both mewled with the pleasure. They rode out their high, hips jerking and coming to a slow stop. The machine stopped underneath her too as the clothes were washed, letting out a beep of alert, shocking them both.

Steve rested his forehead on her shoulder as they both caught their breaths, still wrapped up around each other. Natasha lazily ran her fingers through his sweat coated hair when she felt the first drops on her bare shoulder. He trembled in her arms, shaking as silent sobs wracked through his body, and she only wrapped her arms around him and pulled him closer into her and let him cry it out.

It was a few moments before he stopped and lifted himself. His nose was red. She smiled at him kindly. “You okay?”

He inhaled sharply, clearing his throat, and nodded. “Thank you, Natasha.”

“Hey,” she palmed his cheeks and looks into his eyes as she spoke with conviction. “I'm here for you. Friends, remember?”

He let out a throaty chuckle. “I’m sure friends don't do what we just did.”

“Twenty first century, Old Man,” she teased. “Friends do a lot more than some grinding against a washing machine nowadays.”

He let out a disbelieving breath and shook his head. “Did we seriously just do that?”

She grinned lazily, the post coital lethargy sinking in her bones and muscles, and leaned back on her elbows. “Showing me stars and spangles even in bed, Rogers.” She paused and looked down. “Well, on washers.”

He rolled his eyes at the joke and pulled away from her. He was sticky, and the front of his jeans was uncomfortable and wet. He looked at the place where a large wet patch covered his front and sighed. She hopped off the machine, taking a moment to regain her balance, and saw the mess in his pants. “Well, it's a good thing we're already in the laundromat.”