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I like to think that Rita Skeeter totally lost whatever renown she had after the war and so Harry and Ginny and the others like to pick up her stories for fun without worrying about the effect it’ll have on their image? Like Harry just idly turns a page every morning and goes, “Oh, we’re getting a divorce.”
And Ginny yawns as she fetches two coffee mugs and says, “Is it because I’m snogging Neville?”
“No,” says Harry, “it’s because I’m snogging Neville.”
And Ginny slams down her mug and says, “Goddamnit, Harry, let me have my affair in peace, would you?”

The Avengers frequently lose Bucky after he officially joins the team. He goes away for hours at a time and everyone just assumes it’s best not to bother him. 

The thing is, the facility has a big kitchen and Bucky’s taken to hanging out in the facility’s huge, walk-in freezer. Weirdly, cold storage is his safe space. And because Bucky’s dealt with full-on cryo, the freezer is more like a spa than a fridge. It barely feels cold, and he can hang out for quite a while before it gets hard to breathe.

No one knows where he goes until one day Sam is getting a snack. And there’s Bucky, playing solitaire and eating ice cream sandwiches next to a bulk supply of frozen vegetables. 

There’s an intensely awkward minute of silent confusion as they size each other up.

Sam goes to get Steve. 

Steve steps into the fridge and takes in the sight of his best friend, slightly frosted, casually playing cards by himself. “What are you doing in here, Buck?” he asks.

Bucky plays another card and shrugs. “Just chillin’.”

Look, Marvel didn’t have to devote screen time to Bucky’s healing. They didn’t. They could have dethawed him in Infinity War without ceremony and given it a throwaway line about a fully successful deprogramming. They could have done that. 

But they took actual screen time to show the transition—him waking up to curious and laughing children in a soft, peaceful, domestic setting. He steps out of the hut in loose-fitting robes (not binding leather), and there’s no sign of the metal arm. That weight is gone and he seems perfectly natural without it. He’s clean and he looks comfortable and at ease. 

And Shuri asks him how he is.

And he says, 

“Good. Thank you.” 



GOOD. 

GOOD. THANK YOU.

And Sebastian Fucking Stan delivered those lines like the knife to the heart he knew they were. He delivered them like he delivered, “I know. But I did it,” and “But I knew him.” 

No one else could have delivered those lines. Period. 

And my heart is so full and happy for Bucky because this is the first peace he’s had since Zola got his hands on him in Azzano. For once, a scientist getting their hands on him meant that he was healed—he was put back together instead of being torn apart.

I hoped we’d have a scene like this at the end of the movie, but I didn’t even dare to dream it would be so soft and understated. At least for a little while, Bucky gets to be safe and whole. It’s such a gift.