It was supposed to be an easy, simple day. (Name) was having a good time, shopping for groceries and doing her daily to-do’s, seeing-eye dog’s leash in one hand and bag of frozen foods in the other. Her shades hid her blank, gray eyes quite well, and the way she walked, you never would have known she was blind. And to be honest, most people didn’t.
Which is why when she ran into the strange man in the apartment complex by accident, he sounded rather annoyed and somewhat angry.
“What’s your problem?” He snapped, glaring down at her. She was immediately taken aback by his strangely upset tone. She couldn’t see why (no pun intended), since he wasn’t the one knocked to the floor and had groceries strewn across the floor.
“I’m so sorry, sir, I didn’t mean to. I didn’t know anyone was standing there.” She apologized profusely. He was about to reply as harshly as he’d spoken before, but something caught his attention. Instead of taking the dog by the collar or just grabbing his leash, she had patted on her knees, and when the dog did come up to her, she felt around the leash before she took the leash into her...hand…
“You’re blind.” He realized, and slowly she rose, empty grocery bag in hand.
“That’s right. Now if you’ll excuse me, sir, I have some groceries I need to recover.” She replied jokingly, and bent down, her hands feeling around for the lost groceries that currently decorated most of the floor.
“H-Here, let me help.” He offered, and stooped down to retrieve the array of boxed food that had scattered well around the room. He may have been the Winter Soldier at one point not too long ago, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t still be the chivalrous, kind of decent man he was back during the 40’s. At least, that’s what he thought.
“Oh, really? T-Thank you so much.” She managed, surprised by his sudden change of heart. By the time she’d finally gotten her hands on one box of frozen veggies, the mystery man had already gotten all the other foods that she’d lost, and had them stacked neatly in his hands.
“Here, you’ll probably want these, too.” He mumbled, and held them out for her to take. Sensing he’d moved, her hand drifted out carefully, and landed on one of the boxes in the middle of the stack. Slowly her hand slid downwards until it landed on top of his left, which she immediately noticed was extremely cold and hard. It took all his willpower to not jerk away. She looked confused for a moment, her brow furrowing as her fingers stumbled over the metal pieces where his hand was supposed to be.
“Is your arm...um--”
“Metal? Yes.” He cut in quickly, not really wanting to talk about it. And seriously, who could blame him? He went through a lot to get it that way, and he never even wanted it in the first place. What with all the people staring at him and whispering cruel things about him when they thought he couldn’t hear him, just because he wasn’t like everyone else-
“That’s so cool!” She suddenly said, and he looked down at her, bewilderment on his face.
“You think it’s cool?” He repeated quietly, not really sure how to respond. She nodded vigorously, her smile widening as he shifted the boxes into his normal hand so she could inspect and feel around the robotic one better. And did she ever.
“Are you kidding?? This is so amazing! It’s so smooth and sturdy. Not to mention well built! Ohhh yeah, this is way more awesome than those plastic arm pieces they give to disabled people. You know, the ones that only have the hook?” She babbled, and a very, very small smile appeared on his lips, his head shaking a no as she continued.
“I have no idea what you’re talking about. A hook for a hand?” He checked, and she nodded up at him, her smile never fading.
“Yeah, I mean they’re alright and stuff, but to have a whole hand reconstructed out of metal? That’s so crazy! Does it work well? Can you feel my hand on yours?” She asked enthusiastically, and squeezed his hand in hers, her blank eyes almost locking with his as though she searched for an answer. His gaze wandered to her hand that held his, simply the sight of it sending a warm feeling through his body. It reminded him of something, a long time ago. It was fuzzy, but he felt like he’d held someone’s hand like this a while back. And maybe not just one person, but...maybe it had been many different people…? It was still so weird and blank, his memory. He’d have to figure it out later. But right now his current priority was the beautiful, blind young woman who currently held onto his hand.
“Can’t feel anything with the metal arm. But I can see it.”
“Haha, real funny.” She said sarcastically, but she smirked, obviously unoffended as she released his hand, and hers crossed over to his other.
“S-Sorry, I didn’t mean to say anything about-”
“It’s alright, don’t worry about it. I’ve heard them all before. Most of the time I’m the one saying them.” She reassured him, a warm, understanding smile on her lips that made him feel fluffy. ...Was that even physically possible?
“So what about the other hand? Is that one metal too?” She asked, her bubbly personality right back where it was before. Once again the boxes were shifted, and her hand landed on his good one. Except when her hand landed on his, he was the one who held onto hers. She gasped softly when his larger, warmer hand closed gently around hers, a shy smile on her face now.
“This one’s just fine...see?”
“Yeah, I can definitely see that.”
“Oh. I did it again, didn’t I.”
“Yup! But that’s okay.” She chirped, laughing sweetly. He, almost reluctantly, let go of her hand, and it dropped to her side almost as quickly as the delicate pink blush came across her cheeks. A short silence fell upon them, until the dog, forgotten by the two people, barked loudly, causing one of them to jump and the other to just sort of stare. (Name) laughed sheepishly, reaching down and feeling around for the dog, who pushed its head up into her hand, the one that had been holding his only moments ago.
“Sorry, Pochi. I forgot that you were still here, you were being so quiet!” She joked, rubbing his pricked ears affectionately before standing back up again.
“That’s your dog?” He asked conversationally, actually attempting to have a conversation with someone for the first time in years.
“Hm? Oh, yeah, Pochi’s my seeing-eye dog. A friend of mine from Japan gave him to me not too long ago. He raised him up as a puppy, and trained him to help me out when he first met me.” She explained, but since he was obviously still bad at having conversations, all he did was nod, which she didn’t catch.
“...Well, since you’re here, and still holding my
food, can you help me get everything set up in the house?”
“Uh, sure.” He responded shortly, and another smile crossed her face as she turned, taking keys out of her pants pocket and unlocking the door that stood right next to her, allowing them both to enter.
“Lucky thing I ran into you right in front of my apartment, huh?” She mused, and let them both in, taking the leash off of the dog and swapping the animal out for a cane sitting next to the door.
“Come this way, the kitchen’s over here.” She directed, and lead him into her modest kitchen, tossing the keys onto the counter, stopping when her cane thunked into the stove, her fingers beginning to wander around the appliance.
“Hey, do you um, want to help me with cooking or whatever?”
“Thanks, but I was just leaving for a reservation at a restaurant.”
“Oh, alright. Are you leaving some lucky girl waiting?” She asked, turning around to grab the box of frozen veggies from the table.
“Me? No, there’s no girl.” He replied, surprised anyone could think that he’d be dating anybody. I mean, look at him. Have you seen that glare?
“Aw, that’s too bad. It’s no fun to go out to eat alone. You just sit there and eat all silent, nothing really happening. People who eat by themselves are usually really lonely looking.” She observed, reaching for a pot that hung above them. Her fingers brushed the tip, causing it to swing around rather dangerously. He reached up, stopping its movement so it didn’t come off its hook and land on her head by accident. It would be pretty funny, but...the idea of harm coming to her of all people just didn’t sit well with him.
“Why do you have those hanging up there? You can’t reach them, so you can hurt yourself.” He scolded lightly, and she bit her lip, hiding a smile as she reached up to attempt and retrieve the pot again.
“It’s sweet that you’re concerned about me, but I really don’t mind. I usually just catch them when I knock them down.”
“You don’t even try just taking them off?”
“Nope. Can’t reach, see? I just mess with them until I can knock them off. Then I can catch them.” She reasoned, and her fingers brushed the metal, which then pushed it, causing the pot to swing around again. And again he caught it, stopping her hand from pushing against it by taking it into his, lowering her arm as with his.
“That’s dangerous.” He repeated, and she sighed in slight annoyance, her free hand now on her hip.
“I know it is, but I’m not a child. I might be blind but I can take care of myself.”
“Why don’t you just...I don’t know, just-- come eat dinner with me…?” He offered, surprised at himself that he asked her to go on a date with him.
He asked her to go on a date with him.
“Did you just...ask me out??” She asked, the grin on her face absolutely adorable and annoying at the same time, her eyes shining behind her shades.
“I think so…?” He muttered, not entirely sure of what he just did. Much less if it was even the proper thing to do. But her happy little giggle convinced him it was.
“I’d love to go with you! As long as you’re not a creeper or rapist or whatever. I mean, I’m not really sure since you have that metal arm and all.”
“What does my arm have to do with anything?”
“Absolutely nothing!” She chimed, and without another thought she trailed her hand up his arm until it came to rest in the crook of his elbow, and she looped her arm around his and lead them out of her apartment almost as quickly as they came in, pausing when they were back in the hallway.
“You’re going to have to lead, though. I don’t even know where the heck we’re going.” She added. He smirked, something that she didn’t notice.
“For a blind person, you’re all over the place, you know that?” He commented, and she chuckled.
“Oh really? And what’s that mean?”
“I don’t know, really. It’s just that a lot of shy people are more quiet and shy, I guess. You’re pretty out there, um…” He trailed off, realizing he didn’t know something kind of extremely important about her. Her eyes widened behind her shades when she realized the exact same thing.
“Oh my gosh! I haven’t even told you my name, have I? And here we are, about to go on a date!” She cried, laughing loudly as he lead her down the steps carefully. The building, for whatever reason, didn’t have any elevators. Which was pretty stupid.
“Names are kind of important.” He chimed in, his dull voice slightly discouraging her from continuing, but she shook her head, carrying on anyways.
“Sorry about that, sir. My name’s (Name) (Last Name).” She introduced herself, and he repeated her name as he opened the doors to the complex, letting her out first before following after, arms still linked together.
“That’s a nice name. It suits you.” He complimented oddly, and she smiled up at him, charmed by his, well, charm, as odd and awkward as it may have been.
“Thanks, that’s so sweet of you to say. And what’s your name?” She prodded, making him smile minutely, his hand stuffed into his classy, old style khakis.
“Bucky. My name’s Bucky Barnes.”
LITTLE DID THEY KNOW WHILE THEY WERE GONE POCHI ATE ALL THE FROZEN FOODS THAT WERE ON THE TABLE AND DIED FROM FOOD POISONING.
I was kidding.
Calm down, it’s okay,
Just go have fun on the date.