The Intel they had received had been correct, but nevertheless the mission hadn’t gone smoothly, of course, it was rare if a mission did go smoothly. They had managed to take down the HYDRA pledging hackers who were trying to bring SHIELD down once more, but not without a fight.
Sharon had taken a bullet to her side, Sam had a few scratches, Maria had a bullet graze on her arm, a cut on her forehead, Steve had taken a knife to the chest but the wound had long since healed.
After making sure Sharon was in medics, Steve made his way down the hall to the quarters section of the Hellicarier and towards the room Maria always used.
“You ok?” Steve asked from the door frame, concern audible in his voice as he watched her tend to a wound on her arm.
“Yeah.. how’s Sharon?” A faint chuckle passed his lips,of course she would ask about Sharon, turn his concern towards someone else other than herself.
“In medics, a few stitches and some rest, she’ll be fine.” Steve moved towards the bed where she sat and crouched in front of her, grabbing a sterile cotton pad before adding some antiseptic to clean the cut on her forehead.
“I’m fine, Steve.” Maia said as he gently cleaned the cut. She really was, he didn’t need to tend to her, he needed to get himself checked out, make sure he was alright.
“Just…” He started but was cut short when he noticed where her gaze was. Her blue gaze lingered on his blood stained t-shirt and the cut that had been made in the fabric by the knife.
“It’s healed..” Clenching his jaw he fought back a shiver as she moved to gently ghost her index and middle finger over the patch of exposed skin. Meeting her gaze, he caught something in her eyes, something he couldn’t quite place.
Steve knew she was going to protest against him helping her, so he quickly cut her off before she could say anything. “Let me help, please.”
He saw her weigh her options for a moment before giving in, a sigh passing her lips, her shoulders slumping slightly.
Maria sat still as Steve cleaned the cut, gaze occasionally drifting to his features as he made quick work of cleaning up the cut.
“There. That wasn’t so hard, now was it?” The corner of his lips tugged into a small smile to try and lighten the mood between them.
“Could have been worse.”Letting her turn back to the wound on her arm, he watched as she cleaned it and moved to grab the gauze wrap.
“Here.” Reaching for it, Steve wrapped it around her bicep before clipping the excess off. It was a lame excuse to be near her, a selfish excuse as she was hurt, but he couldn’t help himself. There was something below the surface between them, something that had grown since they first met and he wasn’t sure how much longer he could ignore it. He didn’t know if she felt the same way or if he was interpreting things the wrong way -after all, he was still pretty clueless when it came to women especially Maria. He knew how private she was and how she didn’t mix work with her personal life, but he wasn’t sure how to interpret the subtleties of her behaviour towards him.
The lingering glances that he found himself returning, the inner conflict he could see brewing within her whenever he wanted to help or do something nice for her, It had actually surprised him that she had accepted his jacket at Stark’s party a year ago. He wanted to say it was him being a gentleman, but i realty there was an underlying possessiveness there, a possessiveness he had no right feeling.
Steve watched as she put the medical supplies away and shrugged on her dark down leather jacket. She was about to turn for the door when he stepped in front of her. The small gasp she made was only audible to his ears, but it stirred something within him. Something dangerous.
They held each others gaze for a moment, the tension between them growing thicker by the second before it was broken. Like a spell breaking at the strike of midnight.
“Thank you.” Maria said, and just like that before his eyes, she was back to being the Commander everyone knew.
“You’re welcome.“ Giving a nod, he stepped to one side and let her go back out into the world, away from their little bubble that was these four gunmetal gray walls.