Fic: Take Me As I Am Darcy/Bruce FRT (1/1)
Spoilers: Avengers movie
Summary: Darcy changes her mind about hand holding.
Disclaimer: not mine, no profit being made here
Author’s note: Written for this prompt at the kinkmeme, inspired by a David Cook song, which is also the title. My first Darcy/Bruce fic, please be kind.
Darcy has never been fond of hand-holding. She’s always thought it was over-rated. But until now every guy she’s ever been with has never been great at it either. Hands too sweaty, too dry, gripping to hard, not hard enough, the list could have gone on. Then she tased a Norse god, met an i-pod stealing SHIELD agent and got a job working for the Avengers Initiative. Where she met one Doctor Bruce Banner, aka the Hulk.
While Darcy could really appreciate the more muscular qualities of his alter ego, Bruce was another creature all together. Of course he was super smart, but Darcy was no dummy and she’d learned a fair bit of the hard sciences just from being Jane’s intern. He wasn’t hard to look at, she’d always gone for older, professor types and he fit that bill to be sure. And there was his hair. Darcy just wanted to run her hands through it to see if it really was as soft as it seemed.
But there were other things that she did notice. He seemed uneasy in team meetings, never came to any of Tony’s parties and well, when he flinched at Jane’s attempt to hug him after a discovery, Darcy knew she was going to take him under her wing. Operation Show Bruce He Deserves Human Contact was under way.
It started with her remembering what kind of tea he liked. She brought him a cup when she went on coffee runs for Jane. He smiled shyly.
“You really didn’t have to, Darcy.”
“I totally did, Bruce. Can’t have Jane’s science bro go without, I’d never hear the end of it. Just don’t make me remind you to eat regularly and we’ll be fine.”
She gave his hand a quick pat, one that he didn’t have time to react to, flashed him her brightest smile and walked away. She glanced back to see him look at his hand in puzzlement before he went back to his simulations and cylinders.
She tried gentle shoulder nudges next combined with a joke or pop culture reference when Steve was around. He smiled at those, eyes sparkling with mischief as she planned an epic prank war with Tony against Clint. When he made a small suggestion she even got him to give her a high five. The operation was going well.
Darcy had a carefully laid out plan that should have taken months to work up to full on hugs and maybe even a kiss on the cheek or whatever. But as usual, evil had something to say about that. Something came whizzing through the very large picture window one Tuesday afternoon. Jane screamed, Darcy pushed the panic button and Bruce started hyperventilating.
“No, no, no, Bruce, you can NOT Hulk out in here. Tony just finished the tower. He would go ballistic if we had a Hulk size hole in the lab.”
He lifted his head, normally brown eyes now green. His skin had a very minty tone to it and he looked right at her. Damn if it didn’t go straight to all her lady parts. She pushed down all those feelings and tried to concentrate.
“Run,” he said his voice deeper. She could see muscles rippling and his shirt starting to strain against his already impressive chest.
“Think not, Brucey-boy. You are coming with me and we are going to that very impressive containment unit that Phil insisted be installed if you were going to work here.”
She grabbed his hand, trying not to realize how perfectly hers fit inside his. She pulled until he started moving. She threw a smile back at him, and he took in a deep breath, visibly trying to keep Big Green at bay. She led him down the hall, past all the security and Steve and Clint who were going after the bad guys. She pressed the red button that led opened the door to the containment unit.
“Okay, in you go, I should go make sure Jane got out.”
“Stay,” Bruce said his voice not as deep as before. He tightened his grip on her hand. She nodded, stepping into the room with him as the door slid shut.
There was a tiny voice in her head that was screaming at her, asking her what in the hell was she doing, but she ignored that too. She guided Bruce to the floor, never letting go of his hand. They sat across from each other, not saying anything. She tentatively reached for his other hand and he gave it to her willingly.
Holding hands was good, Darcy thought. Now she allowed her mind to wander, let the thoughts she’d pushed back float to the surface. Her hands really did fit nicely into his. Not that she was going to dwell on that much. She wasn’t some rom-com heroine who fell for the guy just because body parts slotted well together.
Bruce was warm, making Darcy wonder if that was because he was on the verge of going all green rage monster-y or if he was just naturally warm. This did not lead to thinking about having a Bruce-like blanket in her bed. Nope. Absolutely not.
Darcy took a cleansing breath and concentrated on keeping Bruce grounded. He was concentrating on breathing, squeezing her hands occasionally. Not hard, just like a reassuring kind of thing, making sure she was there. She was tempting to say something, but for once her brain to mouth filter was working. Bruce’s skin was taking on a more normal hue, well, normal for him which was pale even for a scientist.
Darcy noted that the villains seemed to have been dealt with when she caught a glimpse of SHIELD agents starting to gather around the outside of the containment room.
“Uh, Bruce, I really hope that you’ve got the big guy under control because we’re kinda attracting an audience.”
He breathed out a huff of air, and ran his thumb over her knuckles. Darcy did not get weird feelings in her stomach that made her dizzy. The smile he gave her when he looked up did not totally make her mouth go dry.
“I’m good. Thanks, Darcy. For staying, I mean. Not everyone would have done that for me.”
She mentally shook herself and physically shrugged. “Anytime, Bruce, but I can’t promise to be there every time.”
He chuckled and helped her off the floor. “I won’t need you there every time; the Avengers do need the H-other guy sometimes.”
“Anyway, I really do need to check on Jane. She may be having a minor freak out right about now.”
“Sure, I understand. See you at the debriefing?”
“Of course, what would a near crisis be without Nicky’s debriefs?” She still couldn’t believe she got away with calling Director Fury that.
She was down the hall and almost to the stairwell when he called her name. She turned and gave him a quizzical look.
“Would you like to go to lunch? Outside of the Tower I mean.”
“Uh…sure, tomorrow good?”
“I’ll text you the details. Go see to Jane.”
She waved and started down the stairs, cursing the lockdown that kept the elevators from working. Halfway down her brain processed the fact that she sort of had a date with Bruce Banner, who apparently not only owned a phone, but knew how to text.
Lunch was at a little out of the way bistro that Bruce walked her too. They talked about everything, laughing and Bruce letting her touch him far more than he ever had in the past. It was if the whole holding hands so I don’t Hulk out incident had loosened him up. They may not have held hands on the way back, but there was certainly the occasional brushing of fingers.
Lunch became a regular thing. It turned to dinner. Where he kissed her on the cheek. Somewhere in between he got up the courage to tell her he had feelings. One kidnapping by the villain of the week may have had Big Green saying something similar though Darcy will deny it until the day she dies.
They were taking it slow. Everyone else seemed happy for them, even if Tony’s teasing did get on her nerves. They may not be anywhere near getting intimate, but Darcy is okay with that. Heavy petting and long make out sessions are just fine for now. But her favorite thing?
Holding hands with Bruce. Whether it was walking to their favorite bistro or just sitting with him during movie night, she loved this small intimacy. He drew patterns on her palm, wrote equations on her fingers, and whispered his love against her skin. She loved every second of it.