#they made every other man in the mcu shave and that's wild to me
subloki · 2 months ago
It just occurred to me that for the Loki Shirtless scene they had to dye Toms chest hair black and the mental image of a man dying his chest hair is making me CACKLE!!!!
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he could have shaved, but someone DECIDED on having chest hair. It was a CHOICE and I LOVE that.
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averagescribbles · 2 years ago
when we see the sun again ~ part i
pairing ~ Winter Soldier!Bucky x OFC
summary ~ Anastasia Kolensky has lived in a perpetual cycle of training, dancing, and going on missions for as long as she can remember. When a new group appears in their complex, she and the girls of the Red Room have to decide what to make of the “Winter Soldiers”.
warnings ~ mentions of violence, seduction, slow burn, this has a ridiculous amount of exposition, please bear with me
a/n ~ This won’t really follow MCU cannon because it was written before The Black Widow movie came out, this will be a mix of what hints of knowledge I have and some aspects from the comics, this will be a pretty dark version of the Red Room, I don’t know why the paragraph spacing is weird it’s making my OCD crazy, I promise I’ll fix it when I figure it out haha
Anastasia was a dancer. It was visible in the picturesque line her body made standing idle, the way she seemed to float above the ground with every step, the quick steps of her feet between her opponents’.
The Red Room didn’t need to train her to be attractive. She was a natural enigma that drew the attention of any man that caught sight of her into curious infatuation. Maybe it was the way she held herself, with perfect posture but shy enough to keep her eyes cast down, her cheeks flushing pink when they complimented her. Maybe it her slender body that hid years of training and muscles gained from ballet which piqued their interest. Perhaps it was the peculiar galaxy held within her eyes, green and brown and blue and gray framed by long strands of her thick dark hair.
The other girls envied her; she never needed to spread her legs to get men to spill their little secrets. Just the thought of getting to hold her or press their lips to hers drove men to do the strangest things, their judgement clouded by herr. 
She could hold a gun to a man’s head and instead of struggling to escape, he would just stand mesmerized, wondering how something so beautiful could have led him to his last breath. She would give an apologetic smile, the gun would make a familiar click, and he would see his life flash through his eyes in the green and blue and brown and gray of hers.
She would wipe the blood of her hands, staining herself red with only one thought. Let him be the last one.
What she wouldn’t give to go back, back before she woke up in a cold white room with only one code that’s existed as a constant heartbeat in her mind since then, 211908, 211908, 211908. Back to a time she didn’t have a fragment of a memory of. What she wouldn’t do to save her fallen sisters that stained the room a sickening shade of scarlet.
But every mission she’d return, report back with enough intelligence to complete her weekend. The Headmistress, beaming with pride at her success, would hand her a pair of handcuffs and opened the door to a room full of beds. Anastasia finished early, she earned her twelve hours of rest.
Her exhaustion would overcome her and she would collapse into her bed, barely able to click the handcuffs against her wrist.
The girls’ schedules were intense. On Mondays through Thursdays, they worked on their individual missions from 8pm to 3pm, and they come back to the ballet for two shows from 5pm to 9pm. Every Thursday morning, they received new teams for the weekend after scrimmaging before they leave to wrap up their own missions. They move into shifts at midnight that night. Twelve hours of gathering intelligence, practicing combat, working on team missions, training in dance, and finally, twelve hours of blessed sleep.
It wasn’t as horrible as it sounded. The cycle was a comforting pattern for Anastasia, keeping busy that often helped distract her from the fact that the beds in the room had decreased in number throughout the years. Any moment her mind wasn’t occupied, images of limp limbs and red blood were forced into her vision again. Twelve hours of sleep was enough to keep her strong for the weekend, and it was short enough to prevent her from laying awake at night, unable to free herself from the clutches of her mind or the handcuffs that kept her physically tied to her bed.
A whisper turned her attention to the bed beside her, where Vlada was laying awake.
“You’re awake, I know,” Vlada said, softly chuckling. “Your breath may be even, but that only fools Headmistress Countonya, not me.”
“I know,” Anastasia whispered back, smiling. Vlada was the best trained in the Red Room. Ever since the beginning, she had always been ranked first. Not only was she a combat mastermind, but she had complete control of her feminine wiles and could easily tell people’s thoughts just by watching them for a few moments, something that has kept Anastasia always in close second with her.
“You are thinking about something. Did that German man put up a fight? Or,” her eyes widened dramatically, “did he put his hands up your skirt?”
“That’s not really funny,” Anastasia said. “If he had, and he did not, Countonya would kill me.”
“They’re probably saving you for some big important man,” Vlada said. “A government official, perhaps? Or maybe you will become the wife of some American spy and send back intel in stereotypical Christmas cards with two happy children and a white picket fence in every picture.”
Anya shook her head, unable to hold back some amusement at her dear friend’s wild propositions. “I don’t have a clue what they want to do with me. I’m guessing your man wanted you in bed?”
“It was either me or Nikolina. I could tell he was a rough man with no boundaries. After she lost her rank to Helena on Thursday, she needed a break.”
Vlada shrugged it off, but the dark reality of not having control of their own bodies was too familiar to all of the girls in the Red Room. If told, they would immediately destroy their feet for dance, overexert themselves during missions, spread their legs to any man, and even kill each other. Actions once considered horrible were not foreign to them anymore.
They lay in silence for a few moments, listening to the comforting breath of the other eighteen girls fast asleep in the room. There was nothing unusual, they were just short thirty girls that had trained alongside them but disappeared slowly over the years. 
Anastasia turned to look at Vlada and knew the same question haunted her each night.
“Where did the others go?”
Sunlight spilling into the room from the small gaps in the curtain woke the girls up. A jingle of keys approaching in the hallway was followed by the cream of the door opening.
“Good morning, girls,” Headmistress Countonya said, beginning to unlock each one from their beds.
“Good morning,” replied an chorus of voices. Some girls were sitting up in bed and stretching, others buried their faces back into their pillows.
“It’s an important day today,” Countonya said, finally freeing Anastasia from her handcuffs. “For the first time, another group of exceptional soldiers is joining us. You will not be working on your missions today. They’re arriving today, and I believe it will be courteous to let them meet all of you.”
This shattered the foggy morning haze in the room. Anyone outside of the Red Room was kept at least an arm’s length away. They only knew each other for support, and there was no saying what bringing a new group of people into their world would entail. Their fifty girls had already been shaved down to twenty. Would the addition of more people result in the loss of more of their own girls?
Nervous thoughts were scattered through the room as the girls piled on their clothes. On went lacy underclothes, mostly out of habit for most of the girls. Out came black shirts and skirts and debates on whether or not to wear heels. They crowded around the mirrors in the bathroom, putting on makeup and pinning their hair into place.
Unlike the other girls, Anastasia was done getting ready in a few short minutes. She simply threw on a black blouse and the girls’ standard skirt. A few strokes of a brush was enough to do her hair, which fell in natural waves to her waist. She slipped on a pair of flats and walked out of the room, passing the full and noisy bathroom on her way out with a smile.
Headmistress Countonya was speaking with a group of people, four men and a woman. Two were very large, all brawn and pure muscle. They held themselves high, above everyone else, but Anastasia noted their toes awkwardly fidgeting in their shoes, a telltale sign of a lack of understanding in the conversation they were in.
The third man was slender and tall, he almost had the body of a dancer. He was obviously the brains of the group, considering the fact that he was the only one directly talking to Countonya.
The woman, blonde and straight-backed, held her arms crossed and was shooting dirty looks at the third man, who never once met her gaze.
The final man stood outside of the circle, barely sighing hearing distance of their hushed tones. He had icy blue eyes, which gazed around the room in thought.
Anya suddenly felt her stomach drop. She knew she recognized him from somewhere. Was he involved in one of her missions? Was he a witness she didn’t realize she needed to fix? It didn’t matter where she knew him from- what scared her the most was that she couldn’t remember who he was at all.
Just as his eyes landed on hers, the woman judged him back to attention, and the break in stillness resulted in Countonya looking back at Anastasia.
The Headmistress lost her large smile during the brief interruption but immediately put it back on, walking gracefully over to Anastasia, arms outstretched.
“This is Anastasia,” she said, her hands landing on Anya’s shoulder and arm. “She’s one of our best, and the most excellent dancer we have.”
The five murmured greetings in return to Countonya’s introduction.
“Now,” she said, turning back to the girl and raising a hand to straighten a lock of her hair. “I need you to go get everyone so we can properly introduce ourselves to the Winter Soldiers here.”
“Yes, ma’am,” she responded before immediately turning on her heels to go.
She swiftly ran back to the girls’ room, her heart beating faster than it should while she tried to search her brain for how she could possibly know the man. Somehow, all she was drawing was a blank. There was nothing but their brief encounter that just happened in her mind.
Anastasia shook herself free of the worry, telling herself there was time to discover the truth later. She stuck her head into the doorway, the girls putting on their stockings and tossing shoes around inside.
Before she could open her mouth to say anything, Ekaterina was already responding.
“Jesus, Anya,” she said, hairpins in her mouth as she pulled her thick hair into a flattering updo. “Not all of us can wake up, get dressed, and leave looking as perfect as you.”
“Oh, no,” Anastasia said, remaining in the doorway. “Countonya wants you to hurry up. I’m happy to wait.”
“Why?” Gennediya stood straight and joined Anastasia in the doorway. “Are they all incapable old men that are only capable of ‘long-distance intelligence work’? Are they going to be our new partners.”
“No, no,” Anya responded. “I honestly don’t know. There are four men and a woman.”
Vlada came out of the bathroom, pushing her long blonde hair over her shoulders. “C’mon, everybody. Don’t want the Winter Soldiers to be Summer Soldiers by the time we go out there.”
As she passed by Ekaterina, who was applying lipstick in the mirror, she smacked her hand and warned protests of the girl.
“That’s your fifth layer of lipstick. Any more makeup and Countonya will wonder why our dear sister Ekaterina was replaced by a oil painting.”
All of the girls’ burst into excited muttering while they left the room, Ekaterina the last to come out with significantly less makeup on her face than before. Anastasia was joined by Natasha, who nudged her playfully, gesturing back at Ekaterina.
“I think she wants to bed one of the new men,” she whispered.
“Is that a surprise?” Anastasia responded, making Natasha giggle.
The girls immediately got into a straight line based on their rank when they fell in sight of Countonya. Vlada, Anastasia, and Natasha remained the first three as always and the other girls shuffled into their new positions, which they received last Thursday. Ljuba, who was last for the second week in a row, couldn’t help but visibly be shaken at the remembrance of the other girls that were once at the end of the line and didn’t live to see the next day.
“Vlada,” Countonya said, beginning the role call.
“211914,” she replied automatically, stormy gray eyes locked ahead. One could tell just from Vlada’s stance, arms clasped behind her back and feet a shoulder’s width apart, that she was a fighter. She was beautiful, with long blonde hair that fell down her back, but her eyes, clouded with thousands of thoughts racing through her head, often intimidated people. Anastasia’s eyes unconsciously grew brighter. That was one of her best friends, at the head of the group, being the leader she was trained to be.
“Anastasia,” Countonya called out, moving to the next girl in line.
“211908,” the girl responded. She knew she wasn’t as impressive as Vlada. Though they were closely ranked first and second as always, Vlada could hold the stance of a soldier while Anya simply stood in fourth position, her body taking every opportunity to dance. While most girls half-hazard the art because it was a mere cover for the Red Room, Anastasia embraced the art form and poured her passion into it.
“182110,” the redhead responded, face set in a straight expression Anastasia knew was a ruse to convince Countonya that she was not the joking mess Anya knew her dearest friend to be. She stood like Vlada, but puffed out her chest and straightened her back more, making the curve of her body over-exaggerated. Countonya raised an eyebrow as she passed, and when she had moved on, Natasha looked to her side and shot a wink at Anastasia.
“Gennediya, Vera, Stanislava, Helena,” Countonya continued going down the line, the girls responding with their codes mechanically.
The Winter Soldier with icy blue eyes followed his group and Countonya, disinterest written all over his face. His gaze wandered back down the line and eventually landed on Anastasia’s. For a brief second, his brow furrowed and his eyes grew cold, locked in a gaze with hers. Then, his shoulder twitched, perhaps a nervous tick, and he returned to the group, his back a little straighter than before.
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