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18 August 2015 @ 08:11 pm
FIC: New Routine (I Missed You) (MCU, Phil/Clint, Sitwell), PG-13 (Part 2/2)  
PART 1/2





June 2nd, 2014

Clint rarely thought about his future. More than once it proved to be more distracting than anything else. And, really, how far in the future could he think in his line of work? It didn't give much time and nor space to plan, so Clint usually focused on the present. And when he felt like feeling sorry for himself, he thought of the past far too much anyway, as there were many people who still liked to remind him of it from time to time, under various circumstances.

Now, however, when he was lying on the couch in the Bus, looking at the ceiling and occasionally out of the window, he couldn't help wondering what would he do after they got back. What would Phil do. Clint wanted to be mad at himself, because it looked like his traitorous brain just kept adjusting his plans to fit Phil's purely theoretical future actions that might or might have not included him. Damn it all, why? After such a long time Clint finally had gotten used to being by himself once again, he thought he was okay, and now Phil was back and everything had changed. Again.

He still hadn't decided what to do, or what to think, but one thing he knew for sure. He was relieved Phil was back. And Clint was angry at how he had treated the other man.

When Clint had heard about what had happened to Phil for the first time, when Phil visited him and brought take out from one of Clint's favorite Italian places, Clint couldn't believe all of it actually had happened. Which sounded pretty stupid now when he thought about it, considering everything Clint had seen in his life, including fighting aliens and being on friendly terms with an Asgardian. The way Phil had sounded when he had been talking about what had he found out almost broke Clint's heart. Not knowing what else to do, he had put his hand on Phil's then and squeezed gently, letting Phil talk. Yeah, the fact that someone else besides him knew that Phil was alive still pissed him off, but in the end, he was thankful the other man had people who were there for him and that he didn't have to go through all of this alone.

Clint also wondered how Lucky was doing. He had left him with Koening, who seemed to be taken with him right from the moment he saw the dog, but it was difficult not to worry. It was the first time Clint had left Lucky for so long, and he already missed the furry dork.

"Agent Barton?"

"Yeah?"

Clint opened his eyes and looked at Jemma Simmons, who looked a bit nervous as she stepped a bit closer to the couch. She was holding a plate with a big burger on it, fries, and a cup. Phil's ugly red cup with purple dots on it. "Agent Coulson thinks you should probably eat something, so I made you this. I mean, I heated it up. I can’t really cook. We usually buy a lot of them when we can. You do like burgers, right?"

Clint sat up and stretched his arms above his head. She seemed to be uncomfortable, which, okay, did not surprise him all that much, considering she had access to majority of S.H.I.E.L.D. files and must have read about him long before Phil and May had brought him on the Bus. Skye, the girl he had met after he had arrived, had told him right away that they had an access to them, before she left to “complete her own mission,” whatever that meant.

"What's this?" Clint asked, pointing at the cup in her hand and only then she smiled at him.

"Oh, that's grape juice. Apparently it’s your favorite? If you’d prefer something else, I could…"

“No, it’s fine,” Clint interrupted her, not really wanting to cause trouble. “Thanks.”

Simmons smiled and Clint nodded as she handed him the plate and the cup, then sat down on the opposite side, still looking at him curiously. He decided not to think about it much. Only when he looked down at the burger, he realized that he hadn't eaten anything since the morning the day before. And the burger did look good. He took a bite, and leaned back, trying to relax. And Simmons just kept looking at him.

“What? Is there something on my face?” he asked finally, still chewing, and he raised one hand to wipe his face off, just in case. Simmons blinked a few times and glanced down on her hands.

She did not have time to answer, because as the door opened again Leopold Fitz walked in, looking at the screen of something that looked like a communicator, or a tablet with some additional parts attached to it. Clint didn’t think he’d seen anything like that among S.H.I.E.L.D. equipment before, but he didn’t ask. The man bit his lip and his brows furrowed as he typed something in without looking at any of them.

“I thought I could find something that would help us with synchronization of the signal from the new version of the analyzer with the watch and the new communicator and I thought it would help to calibrate the…” only then he looked up and when he noticed that Clint and Simmons were watching him, he blinked, surprised. “Oh. Hello, Agent Barton. I mean, Hawkeye. I mean… Sorry, I thought you were still sleeping. I just wanted to…” he pointed with one finger to the tablet. “Right. Sorry. How are you feeling?”

“I’m fine, thanks,” Clint answered, taking a sip from the cup. “You know, you don’t have to babysit me if you have something important to do. I know where everything is by now.”

He did realize they had been keeping an eye on him, he just wasn’t sure if it was because they didn’t trust him or because they were afraid something might happen to him. He didn’t like either version, though he did understand they hadn’t known him for long, after all, and they didn’t have much reason to trust him, even if Phil had told them about him. After everything that had happened since they were recruited, after what had happened to S.H.I.E.L.D., they could still be cautious about anyone new joining the team. It still didn’t make him much more comfortable, though.

“Oh, no, Agent Barton, we’re not babysi… we’re not here for that. We just… well. You’re Hawkeye,” said Fitz, sitting down next to Simmons, holding the tablet against his chest protectively and looking at Clint with some sort of… wonder. Or something similar.

Clint didn’t remember the last time anyone had said his codename quite like that. With admiration. He didn’t know how to react to that, but from the way the two scientists were looking at him, he guessed that it was his turn to say something.

“You know, you can call me Clint if we’re going to work together.”

“Really?” Fitz sounded surprised, but pleased at the same time.

“Sure, why not,” Clint shrugged, finishing the burger and the juice. Fitz was still looking at him and Clint smiled back, which might have come off as anxious. “Phil said you two are in charge of all the equipment here? All the hardware, software and fixing stuff?”

“Yes,” Simmons nodded. “Well, mostly Fitz, when it comes to actual fixing of the equipment. I am a biochemist, but yes, we do work together on everything here. Why?”

“So, you are the ones who worked on the aid?” he pointed to his right ear and Simmons nodded.

“Yes. We thought it could come in handy if you’re going to be here with us. Working with us, I mean.”

“Why? Is something wrong with it? Do you need us to change something?” Fitz asked, curious.

“No, it’s okay. I was just asking. But I think I might need more arrows,” Clint replied, leaning back against the headrest again. “We don’t really know how much time we’ll have for all this, and I have some of the ones I usually use with me, but I could use more of the grappling hooks and maybe some sort of a hacker? Most of the ones I took are explosives and I kind of doubt they would help much this time.”

“Yes, of course,” Fitz nodded right away, and he started to type something on his tablet quickly, as if he already started planning what to do. “If I could borrow some of your arrows I could adjust them and maybe upgrade them or work on new models. With yours and Agent Coulson’s authorization, of course. But I think if we looked at the mechanism of your taser arrows or at least adjusted the timers, they could be useful. If you have any hackers with you I could maybe reprogram the software or…”

“I have them all in my bag,” Clint interrupted him. It looked like Phil wasn’t joking when he said FitzSimmons really liked their job. “They’re in Phil’s office. I will talk to him about it and let you know. You seemed really into whatever you were talking about when you walked in, so I will wait until you finish that.”

“Oh, right. Yes,” Fitz was typing once again. “I managed to find the code that would help us upgrade the analyzer, I was just thinking about adding some sort of protection codes, just like Agent May suggested, I’m just not entirely sure what kind would work best here. She seems to be really focused on finding what had happened to Agent Sitwell and…”

After a few minutes Clint just closed his eyes and laid down, wondering how will all of this would work. He found out that FitzSimmons’ chatter was a welcome background noise as he put one hand under his head and sighed quietly.

Phil and May were spending a lot of time on working out a plan and checking possibilities based on everything they had managed to find out. Clint was helping them at first, but Phil told Clint he looked like he needed some sleep and promised they would call for him when they needed his expertise, so Clint listened, but he couldn’t stop thinking. And May seemed to be affected by the situation as well, even if she was keeping it in check, Clint noticed how much time she had been spending either in her quarters or in front of the computer.

Clint was never sure how May and Sitwell’s acquaintance had worked before everything blew up, and not even rumors had managed to make it clearer back then, much less now. Clint had teased Sitwell enough times about it, just as Sitwell had been teasing Phil and Clint and their relationship, but he actually never asked about it and if Phil knew anything, he never confirmed it.

***

March 11th, 2009

Clint was lying on the couch in Phil’s office, throwing a small ball at the wall, watching it bounce off, then catching it again, making sure not to hit a box of cupcakes sitting on the desk.

It was Phil’s bright pink stress ball, he had gotten it from Fury on his birthday, and when he had seen it for the first time he definitely had not been impressed. He had cast Fury a look that the junior agents, if they ever saw it, would definitely have adapted to fit the theory that Phil is the king of vampires and his look alone could knock somebody down. Clint had to admit it was one of his favorites. He helped create it, after all.

He just gotten back from the range about a half hour ago and Phil’s office was much more comfortable than his bunk. Not to mention offered a much better company.

Clint was used to spending time in Phil’s office after training. Both Clint and Natasha liked to hang out there and Phil never minded. This office made Clint feel… secure. He could relax there and knew that it wouldn’t be a problem if he fell asleep, even if he forgot to take off his boots, because Phil was there. Ever since the other man had let him crash on his couch for the first time, about a year after he recruited Clint, it became kind of a habit to just go there whenever he needed it. At first Clint had expected Phil to throw him out at some point, tell him that he spent too much time in the office and withdraw the invitation, but it never came. Even when Phil wasn’t there for some reason, he gave Clint permission to enter and make himself comfortable, as long as he did not touch any paperwork. Phil trusted him that much and it was pretty special.

After they had started dating and Clint haven’t needed an excuse to visit Phil anymore, this office became his second most visited place, right after the shooting range. Natasha was very glad she didn’t have to listen to Clint’s attempts to come up with new reasons to talk to Phil, and Clint could focus on trying new ways of distracting Phil from work. It was a lot of fun, too.

So now he was sitting on the couch, waiting for Phil to get back. Before they left for work Phil had mentioned meeting Fury and having a busy day overall, so Clint decided to do something nice for him and make the day a bit more bearable. He had finished his duties earlier (training with the new snipers was not very demanding, but someone had to show them how everything is done), and with Fury’s approval and bribing Hill with pastry, he had sneaked out to bake Phil’s favorite raspberry and chocolate cupcakes, hoping to get back before Phil did.

When he heard the door opening he turned to see Phil entering the office, Sitwell, Blake and Hill following him. The looks on their faces meant the meeting might not have been as easy, but at least they seemed to have accomplished whatever they were working on.

“We will need to prepare the extraction point,” Hill said, just as Blake closed the door after them. “Blake could lead a team of Level 5 agents and they most likely will need a sniper or two as well. It shouldn’t take more than a few days, considering everything our analysts have found out.”

Phil went to his desk and took a couple of folders from his drawer and started looking through them. “I believe Agent Jacobs is currently free,” he said after a while, pulling one file and handing it to Blake. “She hasn’t been on a Level 5 mission yet, but I’ve heard she did well on the previous assignments and her latest scores prove it. Agent Barton, what do you think?”

They all turned to look at him just then.

“She’s good,” Clint said, throwing the ball at the wall again. “The best from her team. Not the best at undercover work or analysis maybe, but if it’s only shooting, just give her some light equipment and she should do fine.”

“How about hand-to-hand combat?” Blake asked, closing the file.

“Not bad. She’s quick and knows how to use it to her advantage. If you need back up, you could take Thompson as well. They work well together.”

Clint caught the ball as Hill nodded and turned to Phil again. “Alright. I’ll talk to Nick and keep you informed. You’ll get the copies of reports after they get back.”

Hill and Blake left, nodding at Clint before closing the door. Sitwell stayed in place, as if waiting for the rest to leave, clenching and unclenching one hand. He seemed nervous. Interesting. Clint decided to keep an eye on him.

“So, will you talk to her?” Sitwell asked after a while, rolling his eyes when Phil hid the rest of the folders in the drawer, his eyes bright, an amused expression on his face. “That’s not funny, you asshole, so keep that smug look off your face, please.”

“You have to admit, Jasper…”

“You still owe me for making reservations at that Italian restaurant for your anniversary last year, you know. Do you know how difficult it was to get those?”

Clint grinned when Phil glanced at him momentarily, a hint of embarrassment visible on his face. So that was how Phil had gotten the reservations after Clint had mentioned he had never eaten ravioli before. He’ll definitely have to remember to tease both of them for that one, since Phil mentioned it was difficult to get them.

“Who does Sitwell want to talk to?” Clint asked, looking at the other agents. Sitwell’s features seemed a bit tense when he leaned against Phil’s desk. “I assume she is working here. Do I know her?”

“Barton…”

“Sitwell,” Clint replied with the same tone and Sitwell groaned, pinching the bridge of his nose.

“We were talking about Agent May,” Phil said. He stepped closer to Clint and snatched the ball in the air just as Clint threw it at the wall again, completely ignoring Clint’s protests. He hid the ball in his desk, turning to look at Sitwell. “Jasper is thinking about consulting with her on a mission Director Fury assigned him.”

“Okay. Cool. So what’s the problem?” Clint turned to lie down, stretching his legs more comfortably on the couch and putting hands under his head, exhaling loudly.

“There is absolutely no problem,” Sitwell sounded irritated, however. Phil only sat behind his desk, taking a sheet of paper from his desk, writing something at the bottom of the page, before looking at the screen of his computer.

“Come on, Sitwell. What’s up?”

Sitwell didn’t even acknowledge him. “So?”

“I will talk to her. I can’t promise anything, though. She is supposed to be here tomorrow. Will that be okay?”

“Good. Great.”

“Hey, I could talk to her, too,” Clint said, smiling brightly when Sitwell and Phil turned to look at him. “She’ll be meeting with Hill tomorrow, right?”

The corner of Phil’s mouth raised up in a half-smile at that, while Sitwell seemed to be fighting the urge to leave the office, or at least that’s how it looked like from where Clint was sitting. “Thank you, but I think I will manage.”

“Just call me later,” Sitwell left and just after the door closed Clint got up and sat on Phil’s desk, putting one leg on Phil’s chair.

“Okay, what was all that about?” he asked as Phil noted something down and started to organize his desk. “Is Jasper in trouble or something? He looked like he wanted to bite my head off. Or possibly hide somewhere in his office. Maybe both. Or no, wait. That’s not how he behaves when he’s in trouble. He wouldn’t bribe anyone, and he definitely wouldn’t get nervous like that if he were in some kind of danger, that’s just not him… wait. Shit! Does he like her? I mean likes likes her?”

Phil’s eyes moved from the computer to linger at Clint’s thigh, which was conveniently situated right next to Phil’s reports, to look him in the eye. Clint waggled his eyebrows when he saw the expression on Phil’s face.

“I will not comment on how that sounded coming from you,” he focused back at the screen of his computer. “Jasper asked me to talk to Agent May because he still owes her for the mission in Morocco.”

“Okay. But still, why was he so nervous about it? I mean, I get it, it’s May, but you have to know something.”

“What makes you say so?” Phil typed something in and only then moved to open the box sitting on the desk. A smile appeared on his face when he looked inside, taking out one cupcake with purple frosting. Taking a bite he sat back in the chair and closed his eyes. Clint really liked putting that blissed out smile on his lover’s face.

“I went home and made you pastry, with your favorite frosting, I might add. I deserve a treat for being an awesome and thoughtful boyfriend,” Clint snagged one blank sheet of paper, crumpled it into a ball. “Oh, and don’t eat everything, I promised to take one to Hill.”

“These are amazing,” Phil said and after finishing the first cupcake and licking the frosting from his fingers, he got back to work on his computer.

“Oh, come on, Phil!”

“Have you handed me your last report yet?”

“You suck, you know that?” Clint threw the paper ball into the trash. Phil only smiled at him.

“No, not yet. It will have to wait until we get home. You deserve a treat for being a thoughtful boyfriend, after all.”

***

June 15th, 2014

Clint wiped his forehead quickly and looked around the dark room. It was quiet, not counting the random sounds of various factory machines located inside the building they were in. He glanced outside only when he made sure the three guards that were there only a few minutes ago have been sent away.

There was only one door at the end of the corridor, so he assumed that was where Jasper must have been. And there was only one guard left standing by the door. It was difficult to stay unnoticed in a rather narrow corridor, but he was used to worse situations. He managed to shoot a dart at the guard, hitting the man in the hand. The guard turned in his direction, raising the gun in his direction, and for a few seconds Clint was afraid he would manage to raise the alarm, but after taking a few steps forward, he fell down.

Clint looked around quickly, and sticking close to the wall, moved forward. He kneeled by the unconscious guard and dislodged the dart from his body, checking the watch each guard seemed to have. It wasn’t flashing and there was no trace of any kind of raised alarm on it, so Clint just tied the guards hands and legs quickly and left him by the wall. The man, if he survived, would be unconscious for the next few days, and shouldn’t remember anything, hopefully. Clint looked around once again, breathing calmly, but noticing no sign of movement or anything that would mean they were found out, moved to stand in front of the door.

He touched the earpiece. “I found the door. Everything‘s clear.”

“Are you okay?” Phil asked and Clint couldn’t stop thinking about how good it felt to hear the other man’s voice in his ear again. He really missed it.

“Fine. It looks like not many people know about this place, just like May said.”

“Or they actually assumed that no one would go there to look,” May added. “Stay there, Barton. We’re coming your way.”

“Got it.”

He sighed, and turned around to have a clear look of the whole corridor, but he focusing most on the metal door.

What would they do if Sitwell wasn’t even there? And what if he were? What would they say? Would he be conscious? If he really was a HYDRA agent and lying to them all this time, if he were alive after all that had happened…. Clint still had no idea what to think about all of it. Only now when he was standing by the door everything caught up with him. Could Clint really fuck up that much and not notice anything? Would someone he had spent so much time with betray them like that? It wasn’t as surprising, really, it had happened more than a few times in his lifetime, but…

He tightened a hand on his bow and kept the other ready to reach for an arrow, if needed. Fitz and Simmons had arrows prepared for him, and they were good.

He had time to test them, and every time he had shot at the targets prepared by Fitz, Clint couldn’t stop imagine how this whole “mission” would work. Those moments had been constantly interrupted by Fitz and Simmons, as the scientists still seemed excited to see him and he had to tell them at least two more times that they really don’t have to call him “Agent Barton” all the time. Watching how they had worked together to improve the equipment, and how they had tried to make everything work, he understood why Phil had developed a soft spot for them.

The new arrows were a bit lighter than he was used to, which had taken him some time to get used to, but they worked just as well. He already planned to talk to Fitz and Simmons about taking some with him after they were done… but he honestly didn’t want to think about that. About what comes “after.”

Suddenly he heard quiet footsteps of two people coming from the end of the corridor. He kept his bow ready, but when Phil and May emerged, Clint sighed, relieved.

“These are the door from the map,” he said. “I briefly checked the other corridors, but this one was guarded better than the others, so I assume it’s here.”

“Move back,” May stepped closer to the scanner to open the door. First she tried simple passwords. She found out that each of the soldiers working in the building had ascribed a set of certain numbers, but each was different, and none of those she had managed to find out seemed to work. Brow furrowed, she took a small device from the pocket of her jacket. She quickly connected it to the scanner by a thin cable and began to type something in.

Clint looked away from May to keep an eye on the rest of the corridor, his bow ready. Phil stood there, focused on the door, too, but Clint saw how tense he was, and how his hand seemed to hover right above his gun. Not ready to shoot, exactly, but prepared for something, just in case. Clint knew what he must have thought right then. They had been gathering information on Sitwell’s status and possible location even before they had contacted Clint, and they all ended up in a building stylized to look like it was abandoned, as if it was ready to be demolished any second. Overall is wasn’t suspicious if someone had looked at it from the outside. But once they entered, Clint knew they were in the right place. It was difficult to predict what could be behind the door, and Phil knew that, too.

He heard the lock of the door click and May unplugged the device, stepped back, and took out her gun right away.

“They put a lot of security codes on that door,” she said and punched in some command on the console. “I hope you’re ready.”

Just as the door slid open, Clint heard beeping coming from the room. It was dark inside, but not enough to not notice the hospital bed standing by the wall, various machines surrounding it. It looked like they were in the right place after all.

Various tubes were connected to body and to the bed itself and only then Clint looked on the figure laying there in silence.

“Jasper,” Clint murmured and Phil stepped closer to the bed, his brows furrowed. May gently pushed Clint towards the bed as well, letting him know that she’d stand guard. Clint nodded briefly and moved to stand next to Phil by the bed.

The figure laying in the bed was indeed Jasper Sitwell. There were two tubes attached to his arm, one to his hand, one was in his mouth, most likely helping him breathe, the rest of wires seemed to be connected to the bed. It looked like for some reason his condition was monitored all the time, they just had no idea if any of the machines was in any way connected to the alarm in the building. Clint quickly send a short message to FitzSimmons to check it out, and only then he focused on Sitwell.

His arms and chest were bruised and he had two big scars on the side of his head, one smaller one near his chin, the other one going from the middle of his cheek right to the ear. He looked like he had not only fallen from a height, which would definitely leave marks and bruises, but was tortured as well, since some of the bruises were precise, and some of the marks looked like knife cuts. Clint clenched one hand in a fist. Phil must have been thinking something similar, because his line of sight was on Sitwell’s bruises as well.

And then Sitwell opened his eyes slowly and looked right at them. The look he cast them was something between relieved and scared at the same time, and Clint had no idea how to react, what to think. Sitwell must have been exhausted, but he still slowly raised one shaking hand and pointed to the tube in his mouth. Phil glanced briefly at Clint, then looked at his watch, probably reading a message from FitzSimmons, before moving to remove the object gently, trying not to injure the man further by accident.

Sitwell coughed a couple of times, desperately gasping for breath, and then looked between them again, his eyes a bit watery.

“… how did you… they said they had…”

“You know we have our ways,” Phil said, not looking away from Sitwell. “We found out what had happened. And we know who the HYDRA agents were.”

Sitwell’s eyes focused on Phil’s at that.

“We know what you did,” May added, not looking away from the corridor.

Clint, clenched his teeth, observing Jasper’s reaction quietly. They had wondered how Sitwell would react to the news, if he knew what had happened. Sitwell only looked down, to where May was standing, and their eyes crossed. He seemed to be thinking about something before he sighed.

“Fury was prepared for that,” he said, with a rasping voice.

“This was what he talked to you about at the meeting?” Phil asked, and Sitwell nodded.

He must have noticed the suspicion on their faces before he coughed one more time. “Chip in my glasses, somewhere in the building. Don’t know where they took my clothes.”

“What are they planning next?” Phil asked.

“There were orders… didn’t get them. They transported me here. Don’t know anythin’ else.”

“We should get out of here now,” May finally said, when the Sitwell and Phil went silent. “We don’t know if the guards called someone, but we shouldn’t risk it. Fitz and Simmons prepared transport already.”

“Come on,” Clint said and turned to Phil. “I’ll go and check if we’re clear, you stay here with him.”

May moved to walk into the room, while Clint left.

“Clint?” Phil called after him and Clint turned his hand. “Be careful, please,” he said and there was a vulnerability there. Clint nodded.

“Let’s get out of here.”

He left the room just as Phil and May started to get rid of the tubes and wires carefully.

***

June 17th, 2014

They managed to retrieve Sitwell, along with some clothes and his glasses, but not without problems. While the darts assured some of the guards would stay asleep, they were not prepared for double security in one of the corridors, since nothing was marked on the maps they had. There was no way people who had kept Sitwell in the building wouldn’t have heard about all this, but that didn’t matter.

Phil was shot in the arm, May did not say anything, but by the way she was trying not to wince Clint assumed she would have a few bruises as well, and Clint almost broke his leg when he jumped to kick one of the guards to divert the attention from May, Sitwell and Phil. His ankle would be bruised and Phil would probably make him stay off his feet, but it could have been much, much worse. Clint didn’t have to think about it.

They did what they had to do. Sitwell was safe. Safe-ish. Simmons found traces of some unknown substance in his system and apparently the bruises still were dangerous enough to keep him monitored, but now they could all keep an eye on him. Phil and May insisted Sitwell should get some sleep, but the man refused, saying he should tell them everything.

He said Fury was aware of everything, that it was a part of the plan to find out who had been a mole. Sitwell admitted he agreed to do everything because no one would suspect him. Not many people paid attention to him anyway, so it worked. Only he and Fury knew about everything, they kept everything low-profile, and that was a part of the plan, to make sure no one would meddle.

Sitwell had been aware of the risk of that approach. He had been alone with all of this, but he had to do it. Even if it had meant confrontation with the Black Widow, Falcon and Captain America. The outcome of that confrontation was the part that he had not expected at all, but even then he couldn’t back out, couldn’t abort the mission. And the next time he had woken up he was already in the warehouse, under surveillance, strapped to the bed.

Just as he had said there was a chip in his glasses, and as soon as they retrieved it, they had started working on decrypting it.

Two days after they got Sitwell back, Clint felt exhausted.

After he left the quarters in which they put Sitwell, he went to Phil’s office, as always. Phil and May apparently had more questions to ask, but Clint wasn’t needed there. And he really felt like he should sit down before the throbbing pain in his leg got even worse.

As soon as he sat down, he sighed, relieved. He stretched his leg , put a pillow under his ankle, and laid down, closing his eyes.

Because… what would happen next? The job was done, just as they had planned. More or less. They hadn’t been planning anything for after and Clint had no idea what to do about that. What to think.

Would Clint just go back to his apartment? Just like that? Neither he or Phil had talked about this, they focused on Sitwell too much, but it had been on Clint’s mind even since they got out of the building. He had no idea what Phil would want, if he had anything planned. What if all of this was… just a mission? It’s been so long since…

“Clint?”

Clint opened his eyes slowly, just as Phil stepped closer to the couch and sat down on the edge, making sure not to move Clint’s leg from its position.

“How are you feeling?” He asked quietly, surprisingly quietly, looking at the bandaged leg. “Berlin being one and Budapest being ten, how bad is it?”

“Oslo,” Clint replied, and Phil snorted. It was difficult not to grin slightly, especially since he really missed this sound. “I just needed to lie down for a bit, honest. It could have been worse. At least it doesn’t feel like it’s going to fall off if I move, so I can’t really complain. How is Sitwell?”

Phil turned to look at the door, concern written all over his face. Once again Clint felt the urge to comfort him somehow, put his hand on Phil’s, anything, but he didn’t.

“May stayed with him,” he finally replied. “I have a feeling they really needed to talk, so I just left. There’s only so much I can take.”

“Okay. Now you just have to tell me, are they…? Were they…?”

“Honestly? I never really asked. What I do know is that they were friends for a long time, and I wanted to give them time to talk.”

They both fell silent, but it wasn’t uncomfortable. Clint remembered how even before they got together, they would have just sit in Phil’s office in silence, Phil filling out paperwork and Clint, sometimes even with Natasha there as well, would just sit there, eating, or just enjoying the time-off. This time was similar, but Clint noticed Phil was tense. He wasn’t surprised, the whole op had left them all nervous and tense, but at some point Phil’s brows furrowed slightly, as if he was still worried about something.

“I know that look on your face.” Clint asked after a while, breaking the silence.

He didn’t mean to say the that, but it was true. Even after all this time, it was difficult for Clint to forget things like that. Things about Phil. At least this time remembering them didn’t make him feel… lost.

“Come on, boss. What is it? Did FitzSimmons do something? Did we forget something? I seriously hope you won’t tell me we’ll have to get back there and…”

“Will you stay?”

Clint blinked, surprised, mouth still slightly open. He might have sat there a bit too long, because Phil’s frown deepened as he turned to look down at his hands.

“I’m sorry. I probably shouldn’t have asked that,” he murmured and Clint stayed seated, still minding his leg. “Damn it. I missed you. I missed you so much, Clint.”

“Phil…”

“I know I have no right to ask anything of you after… after everything. But the last months, seeing you, I’m sorry, Clint. I know you need time, but I just had to ask. Melinda already told me I’m an idiot.”

“I miss you, too, you know,” Clint replied quietly. “I just don’t know what to do now. It wasn’t even your fault, you didn’t know about all of this. I believe you, but, fuck, Phil. All of this, it’s a lot, okay?”

They fell silent again. Phil was still looking at his hands and Clint still wasn’t sure what to think. But damn it, Phil was there, he was alright, they both were. He sighed and reached for Phil’s hand gently, lacing their fingers together. Phil glanced down at their hands, then looked up.

The brief kiss Clint pressed to Phil’s lips felt natural. He really missed it.

“I should go to my apartment first, check for messages from Nat. And get all the important stuff, I guess. It’d be better to keep an eye on the apartment, just in case, I guess,” Clint said. “And I should go to Lucky. He’s not used to me not being there for so long.”

“Right. Of course. You can contact Koening if you want.”

Clint nodded, exhaling quietly.

He squeezed Phil’s fingers slightly, feeling Phil relax a bit, leaning against Clint’s bent leg more comfortably, just before squeezing Clint’s hand back. There was a small, relieved smile on his face and Clint returned it.

They still had to talk about many things, like the fact that it took Phil so long to actually contact him. It still hurt, and Clint was still pissed off about that and Phil knew that. But they still made a good team. They worked together, the two of them, and to be able to just be there, next to Phil, it was comforting. It was something he had thought he’d lost. And holding Phil’s hand, Phil leaning against him, it still felt right. He still wanted it. So much. He just needed time.

Clint made Phil promise that he would never lie to him, wouldn't ever hide anything from him again, no matter how how much it would hurt him. That was the only condition Clint had for him, and Phil squeezed his hand and nodded. Apparently May seemed to agree with the whole idea, because she said she would be there to make sure Phil won’t do anything stupid. It made Phil groan, and he pinched the bridge of his nose, slightly embarrassed, but Clint just smirked at May. The corner of her lips raised in a smirk as well, and as she nodded, Clint felt like it was a start of a pretty good team.

He would have to get used to the new routine, get used to new people, but he was still an agent. He was good at what he did and that hadn't changed. At some point he’d just have to inform Natasha of the new development and the new arrangements, since he assumed she would be done with her mission by then. Well, that would be one hell of a conversation, but he could handle it.

According to data from Sitwell, the team still had a lot to do, and Clint had a feeling Nat might have to join them, maybe Falcon and Steve would, too. He knew Phil would be there, next to him, and it was a great motivation. It looked like they were ready to kick some ass.


 
 
*Mood*: excitedexcited
 
 
 
Julie: Original ★ fanfictionragnarok_08 on August 18th, 2015 06:47 pm (UTC)
I love this fic <333333