Synopsis: You really disliked Zemo, but one person you disliked more? John Walker. After bonding over how you disliked him with Zemo, you have the unfortunate situation of running into John. He flirts, insults, and hurts you and Zemo is ready to put him in his place.
Word Count: 3.6k
Warnings/Tags: Use of swear words, John Walker being a dick, soft Zemo, protective Zemo
Author’s note: I was not intending this fic to come out as long as it did. This was one of the ones I had been putting off to write other stuff till I finally pulled myself around to writing it and ended up getting really into it. Funny how that happens.
“Would you care for a Turkish delight?”
You bite the inside of your mouth in annoyance, refusing to even look at him. Instead of forcing your eyes to focus on a spot in front of you, not moving them in the slightest. Zemo waited for a few moments before sighing and turning away from you.
“You’ll eventually have to talk to me, y/n” he exclaims as he walks over to the kitchen side of the room. You were sitting in the safe house Zemo had provided. There wasn’t much to do, just sit and wait till the funeral started. Zemo sought to communicate to you to keep you two occupied, but you didn’t want to talk with him, so you didn’t. You just sat on the settee, staring at the sofa opposite you while Zemo walked around looking through the cupboards for food.
You were pissed when Bucky revealed he broke Zemo out of prison.
The avengers had been your family. Whenever you needed them Steve would be there to offer you advice, Tony there to make you laugh. Nat there to beat up whoever required it. Everything was wonderful in your life. For once. And he had ruined it.
He caused the family you loved to split, hate each other, and that left you alone. So alone. Losing both Tony and Steve made you more mad at Zemo. He robbed the last years you could have spent with them, so yeah, no wonder you refused to talk to him.
He loved to annoy you, though. Any moment he got he was beside you, creating sarcastic remarks about what was happening, trying to joke around with you. Trying anything to communicate with you. The worst of it was when he insisted you had to be his date on the mission in Mandripoor. Feeling his arm wrap around you, a kiss to your temple, the smell of his cologne flooding you, drawing you in. It pissed you off knowing how easily you fit into the role of his date. Yet you knew deep down why. Every time he made a snide remark, you had to bite your tongue to stop making one back. Every time he tried to joke with you, it took all your effort not to snort. You hated him and everything he does, yet you could sense a fondness growing for him, just a slight one, in the deepest corner of your heart. Left there to be locked away. Never acknowledged.
“So, the new Captain America, huh? What’s he like?” you hear Zemo ask, leaning on the counter of the kitchen table, his eyes burning into the side of your head.
You feel bile rise to your mouth as he spoke.
John fucking Walker.
If you hated Zemo, you despised John Walker. Just thinking of him brought a scowl to your lips. Steve meant everything to you. He was a father figure to you. He stood for all you believed in. He was your hope, your light in the darkness. And John Walker seemed to tarnish it. You wouldn’t have minded him if he was a different mascot for America. If he became America’s new hope. It was the fact that they called him Captain America. That he had the shield. The title belonged only to Steve. He claimed he wasn’t trying to replace Steve, but that is what he was doing. Him being called Captain America felt like a spit on Steve’s memory. People would forget him, everything he did for the country he loved. They would only focus on John Walker, and you detested that.
You didn’t blame Sam for giving away the shield, unlike Bucky. You could understand why he did it. That shield held such a responsibility, such a legacy it seemed impossible to ever live up to. No, you blamed the people who took the shield away from the museum. Without Sam’s permission. They should have asked Sam. But of course they didn’t care. They didn’t care at all.
“I see by your reaction that your impression of him isn’t a pleasant one,” Zemo says, bringing you out of your thoughts and back to reality.
“Have you met him?” he asks
You try to hold back your opinion, but John Walker made you so frustrated, you knew if you didn’t rant about him you would burst.
“Yes. He’s a dick,” you spit out
Zemo quickly straightens up, surprised you actually answered one of his questions.
“Oh? Are you finally speaking to me.” he inquires, walking around the kitchen counter towards you.
“Don’t push your luck” you mutter, side eyeing him as he sits down opposite you. Sam and Bucky were out leaving you alone with Zemo. At the moment you were all waiting till the funeral. Zemo claimed there were a few hours to kill before everyone had to gather. Sam and Bucky decided to check out the town, make sure they knew it well in case a situation occurred where we had to dash. They had forced you to babysit Zemo.
“No, no, I like to hear you talk. Please, if talking about how this new Captain America is a dick is how I get you to speak to me, then let’s continue.” Zemo says, pouring out a glass of whisky for you and him. He holds the glass out to you, an eyebrow raised. You sigh, grabbing the glass out of his hand and drank, feeling the warmth creep up your throat. Zemo chuckles as he watches you, leaning back on the sofa, his arms resting on top of it.
“My, my. The man must be terrible if just the thought of him is making you talk and accept drinks from me,”
“He’s so infuriating! He thinks because he is Captain America he can stick his nose in other people’s business!”
“Ah, so he is one of those people. Doesn’t understand boundaries. How rude,”
“And get this, he got annoyed at us! Telling us we should stay out of his way when he is the one getting in our bloody way!”
“No” Zemo fake gasps
“Yes!” you exclaim, going into a rant, “I can’t even bear to call him Captain America. He doesn’t deserve to be called that. His actual name is John Walker. He claimed he wasn’t trying to replace Steve, but that is exactly what he is doing! And how he talks to me as well. He’s so condescending, treating me as if I am a kid while trying to compliment me and act like he’s all that in front of me,”
Zemo’s eyes narrow and he places the glass down on the table between you two, “You mean he flirts with you?”
“If you could call that pathetic excuse flirting. I suppose. It pisses me off though,”
“I can imagine. He sounds nothing like what Steve was. Nothing like his legacy,”
It was your turn to narrow your eyes, watching Zemo curiously. “I assumed you hated Steve”
“I never hated him. No. I can admire what he stood for, I just find unrealistic. All superheroes are flawed. Innocents will consistently be collateral damage while superheroes are allowed to exist.”
You stare at Zemo, amazed. Not realising the silence you were making. You had always thought he hated Steve. It always seemed that way. Yet he didn’t? Knowing he didn’t hate the guy you always viewed as a father figure mattered to you. And you don’t know why.
Zemo stared back at you. He was studying your eyes, trying to figure out what you were thinking. He didn’t realise what he thought about Steve would have affected you, but it appears he was wrong.
“Don’t worry y/n we’re back and guess what! We found your fav-” Sam shouts, opening the doors of the room and strutting in but he pauses, noticing you and Zemo staring at each other from the sofa’s. “What’s going on here?”
Zemo is the one to pull out of the eye contact trance, smirking as he looks over at Sam, “We were just discussing John Walker.”
Bucky who had followed Sam in grounded at hearing Zemo utter that name. “Perhaps you two would like a drink and join us in considering how much of a dick he is?” Zemo asks, raising his glass to them.
A few hours later you walked down the street following Zemo to find his associate. You didn’t appreciate how secretive he was being, but you understood it. He had many people who wanted to get him, and the second he wasn’t useful to us. He would be doomed.
“It’s too dangerous for you guys to be pulling this shit” you hear a whiny voice shout. Peering up, you notice John Walker and his sidekick ‘Battlestar’ or whatever jogging down the steps towards you.
“Ah! How did you find us now” Bucky shouts with his arms raised, striding towards them.
“Come on. You really think three Avengers can walk around Latvia without drawing attention,” his friend responds.
“No more keeping us in the dark,” John mutters angrily
Zemo, who you were walking besides, turns his head to you, “I understand what you mean by infuriating”
You chuckle as John looks angrily between you two, “You can start by telling us why you broke him out of prison,”
“He did that himself technically” Bucky replies, and Zemo grins at you, as if bragging about it.
“Aw, this better be an unbelievable explanation-” John Walker exclaims, reaching up to you.
“Hey take it easy before it gets weird,” Sam suggests, interrupting John.
“I know where Karli is,” Zemo reveals to John Walker, his seductive accent sticking out from the rest of them. He tries to walk past John. You, Bucky and Sam follow, but John stops him, placing a hand on his chest.
Zemo glares ahead, disgusted at John for even daring to touch him.
“Well, where” he says, getting into Zemo’s face
“All we know is, it’s a memorial so we are going to intercept her there,” Sam adds, trying to defuse the tension.
Zemo grabs John Walker’s hand and pushes it off him, striding forward again, and you jog to catch up with him.
“See why I call him a dick now,” you whisper
Zemo smirks, looking back at you, “Yes. He’s perfectly exasperating”
“What? No. Wait. No! No! Stop. Hold on. Stop. Okay?” John exclaims running forward and stopping you all in your tracks again after something Sam had said. “I think we are way past reasoning with her”
Zemo just stares ahead, fed up with John while you groan in annoyance. Not being able to even bring yourself to look at the man in front of you.
They argue for a few moments while you and Zemo stand idly to the side, Zemo glances at you rolling his eyes making you giggle. You smack his arm slightly trying to get him to stop making you laugh, but that only makes Zemo chuckle along with you. Eventually they calm John down but he glares over at Zemo, “We will deal with you later.”
“I’m sure it will all come to an agreeable conclusion” Zemo says, gesturing with his hands. He walks ahead, searching for his associate while John Walker moves beside you. You try to pick up your pace, but he keeps up.
“So working with a criminal now. Not very avengery like. I thought Zemo hated Steve. I wonder what Steve would think of you working with him,” he mutters peering at you.
“Need I remind you-you are also working with him now,”
“Come on, darling, don’t be like that,” John responds grinning, placing his palm on your back.
“Get your hand off me” you growl scowling at him
“Most women would fawn over me” John cockily resorts, still not removing his hand
“She asked you to remove your hand” you hear Zemo state, glancing over you see he had stopped walking forward, turned around and was now glaring at John. “Do I need to remove it for you?” he says angrily.
John frowns at Zemo. Finally, taking his hand off you and striding up to Zemo. Zemo tilts his head, his jaw clenching in fury as he stares at John.
“You are nothing but a dirty criminal. Don’t think for a second you can talk to me like that,”
“I will when you are being rude and disrespectful towards a lady,”
John scoffs, peeking over to you, then back to Zemo. Everyone else was standing to the side, not sure if they should intervene or not.
“What did she suck you off or something?”
Bucky and Sam had to leap forward to stop Zemo from launching onto John while Battlestar had to hold John back. “Too far man, too far” he muttered to John
Zemo was snarling at John, his teeth bared in rage. His hair had fallen loose from their usual position and was hanging down over his forehead, giving him a more wild look. The vein in his neck stood out, twitching. His eyes were raging with fire as he looked at John. He kept trying to push past Bucky and Sam to get to John, but eventually gave up knowing it was futile.
You were standing at the side, shocked that John would have the ego to say something like that and at Zemo’s rage towards John for saying it. John adjusts his head. Not looking you in the eyes, but looking in your direction. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t of said that”
Pulling your senses together, you walk up to John, glaring at him. “Yeah, you damn well shouldn’t have. You’re a dick. Nothing like Steve. You never will be,”
John wrinkles his nose in anger, frowning at your remark. You walk over to Zemo now that Bucky and Sam had let go of him. You give him a nod, showing your appreciation, and he nods back, though still glaring at John.
“Who I choose to associate myself with is none of your business. Who I choose to suck off is none of your business. Perhaps you can go fuck yourself and learn a bit of decency,” you spit at him.
A brilliant thought crosses your brain for another way to twist the dagger of your dislike into John. You reach out and grab onto Zemo’s hand, clasping it.
The action causes everyone to turn wide eyed to you. Including Zemo. He glances down at your hand in his then back to yours, surprise in his gaze but he immediately covers it up turning back to John smirking. He turns to behind himself, then back to the group.
“My associate is up ahead,”
You all turn to look forwards and see a little girl staring at you. Walking forward again, gripping his hand, Zemo nods to the girl as you all approach.
“Hello my friend,”
He holds out some money, a lot by the looking of it, and says to her, “This is for your family”
The girl hastily snatches it, obviously in need of it, and you can’t help but feel your heart warm a bit, seeing how kind Zemo was being to her.
“Can you show us the way?”
She beckons with her hands and walks forward. Zemo looks back at you, nodding to make sure you were okay, then follows her.
“What the hell” John murmurs from behind.
Following the girl, she leads you to a building. She turns, pointing inside a doorway, and runs inside not to be seen again.
“Karli’s in there,” Zemo tells the rest of the group. Sam replies and heads inside to talk to her while John suddenly grabs Zemo’s arm and yanks him against the machine on the wall.
Zemo moans as he is shoved into it, the hard outer piece hitting into his chest roughly.
“Hey. You’ve got ten minutes” John shouts to Sam as he takes out a pair of handcuffs and attaches them to Zemo.
“Really” Zemo mutters as John cuffs him to the machine.
“Then we are doing things my way,” John declares ignoring him
“Aggressive” Zemo jokes, though from his eyes you could still see the anger he harbors towards John.
He twists his head to watch John stride forward, staring at Sam, then back to him. “But I get it”
You wander over to stand by Zemo as you wait for Sam to talk to Karli.
“This day has brought a lot of changes. This morning you refused to say a single thing to me and now just moments ago you were holding my hand,” Zemo speaks quietly to you.
You shoot him a glare, “I did that to agitate John,”
“Sure, that was the only reason” but you knew from his eyes he didn’t believe you. They sparkled with amusement as he looked down at you.
“That cuff must bother you” you mention glancing over at them.
“I don’t mind. I quite enjoy cuffs, in the right setting of course,” he quips.
You turn on your side, looking at him, your lips curling into a smile. If we are going to play that game, you thought.
“Oh, what setting would that be?”
Zemo’s smile deepened, enjoying seeing you play along, “I’m sure you would like to know”
“Do you have to do this here!” John exclaims, glaring at the two of you. You quickly step back from Zemo, forgetting that you two had company. Your eyes snap to Bucky’s with worry, but he wasn’t looking at you. He glared at the ground, not seeming to care what was happening between you and Zemo.
After that Zemo tried to engage you in conversation again but you effectively ignored him, going back to how you were treating him earlier, which you knew was frustrating him.
John was looking down at the shield, then squeezed the bridge of his nose with his fingers, panting. Both you and Zemo glanced up, watching him cautiously. You glanced at Zemo and he stared back, confirming you were both thinking the same thing about Walker.
He got up and started shuffling towards the doorway. Both you and Bucky eyed at each other for the first time with the same recognition in your eyes. You leave Zemo’s side to walk over to where John was.
“No, no, no. This is a bad idea,” John mutters as he paces around. Zemo watches him like a hawk while you and Bucky stand side by side, arms crossed.
“It hasn’t been ten minutes, John. Sit tight,” Bucky replies.
“Don’t do that. Don’t patronize me,” he spits back, pacing around.
“He knows what he is doing,” you reply
There’s silence for just a moment. You watch as John turns towards you and walks fast, hitting his fist against the shield, “I’m going in”
Bucky walks forward and places his hand on John, stopping him from moving further.
He tries to antagonise Bucky, trying to make him guilty for what could happen to Sam. And you could tell his words were influencing him.
“You will not be going in till ten minutes are up,” you state sauntering over to them
“Oh, so the whore has something to say,” John spits out
In the back, Zemo growls, tugging on the cuffs that connected him to the wall. You feel the outrage prick up on you as John’s remark.
“Don’t call her that” Bucky says, glaring at John
“She’s been openly flirting with the terrorist over there, so yeah, I think it’s appropriate to call her that,” John bites back
You rush forward, attempting to punch John in rage, but he was able to sidestep you and brings the shield up, connecting it harshly to the side of your head. Pain soars across your face as you fall down onto the ground. You groan, your eyesight going dark around the sides and black patches covering parts of what you could see.
“BASTARD” you hear someone shout with a beautiful accent. From the floor, you can’t make out much of what is going on. Someone with a metal arm attacking another guy. A man with a shield being attacked by a man in a trench coat. It was all too confusing for you. You just wanted to sleep.
You could feel yourself fading in and out. Your eyes begging to close. You could hear shouting. Someone talking.
Your head was raised. Someone was holding it in their hands. Your vision is blurry but as they get nearer your eyes could focus on them. Beautiful brown eyes, messy brown hair, cute thin lips. It was him.
“Y/n!?” Zemo shouted at you, “Y/n stay with me”
“My head hurts” you mutter to Zemo as he lifts you up, placing you against the wall. Slowly your eyesight came back, and you could see your surroundings. Only you and Zemo were left.
“Zemo, where is everyone?” you ask turning your head, but in doing so it makes you feel incredibly dizzy. You groan as Zemo places a hand on the side of your face to stop you moving.
“They went after the Sam,”
“I need to help them!”
“No, you need to stay here and recover,”
You look over at the wall then back to Zemo, “How did you get out of the cuffs?” you ask
“Ah well…” Zemo says and glances down at his hand, your eyes follow and widen seeing his hand, bruising covering it, his thumb sticking out at an odd angle.
“You broke your hand to get out!?”
“Well, I couldn’t let him get away with saying those things and hurting you,” Zemo mutters, smiling slightly but you could see the pain flickering in his eyes, “I gave him a well-deserved punch in the face”
You chuckle at the thought. Leaning forward, you kiss him lightly on his forehead, a gesture of you wanting to ease his pain. You move back just in time to see him looking at you, surprised, before your vision faded.
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