The one with all the sass
Summary: You want to learn how to drive a manual vehicle, and Bucky
offers to teach. Things don’t go smoothly.
Characters: Bucky x Reader
Word count: 1,620
Warnings: Language (reader is a potty-mouth)
A/N: Much of this is done conversation style, hopefully it’s easy to follow along.
Number 3: Learn how to drive a manual vehicle.
It was on your resolutions list, one of those goals that stubbornly remained in the top three, year after year after year. Every January, you dutifully copied it onto the fresh handwritten note you posted on the mirror in your bedroom, underlining it three times because dammit, this was it, this was the year you would finally succeed.
Six years later, you were once again within sight of the year’s end, having made no progress, except for drawing angry little stick-figures on the offending post-it note (you swore it was mocking you). After overhearing you complain about your inability to tackle this particular task, Bucky had surprisingly volunteered to teach you the basics. Admittedly, you questioned whether this was a good idea. The two of you were well known among…well, everyone…for a disturbing lack of patience with each other. However, if he was willing to lend a hand, who were you to say no.
So here you were, on a bright, cold November morning, sitting in a faded blue ‘68 Ford pick-up Bucky had nostalgically purchased from an estate sale. A massive (and blessedly empty) parking lot stretched in front of you, leaving plenty of open room for mistakes.
Bucky had driven you out, and after swapping places, he now he sat in the passenger seat, you in the drivers. Bouncing a little on the dusty cloth seats, the rusted springs squeaking indignantly, you got yourself comfortable and turned expectantly toward him.
“Alright, what do you do first?” he asked, sounding irritatingly similar to the older brother you never actually had, but always felt certain you would throat punch if he existed.
“First, I push in the clutch to start – ” your confident recitation was immediately cut off.
“Wrong. First you put your seatbelt on.” Bucky said flatly, eyebrows raised.
You rolled your eyes at him. “Alright yes, first I put my seat belt on.” You pulled the shoulder belt down, the lap belt across, and snapped both into place with a sharp click. “Okay, now I push in the clutch –“
“Wrong. Next you check all your mirrors.”
You stared at him. Well this was going to be interesting.
“Seriously? Is this how this lesson is going to work?”
“Yes, because the basics are still important. If you don’t follow the rules, you could die.”
“And we don’t think that’s just the teeniest bit dramatic?”
“No. We don’t.”
You sighed. Bucky Barnes was stubborn as hell, so if this was his approach to teaching, clearly it would be simpler to humour him. But really, when did you ever make things simple?
“Alright fine, safety first. I brought my safety glasses along, so hang on and let me grab those, and should I get out my kneepads and helmet too, or…?”
“Your sass is not appreciated. Fix the mirrors.”
With a dramatic flourish, you checked each side mirror four times, and wiggled the rear-view mirror back and forth for a full 30 seconds, until you were happy. Bucky watched patiently from the passenger seat, hands folded in his lap, a smirk twisting his lips.
Finally you were settled. “Okay. My seatbelt is on, and I can see for miles in every direction. No possibility for sneak attacks from a rogue Prius. Now – I push the clutch in all the way, and start the truck.” You turned the key, the truck spluttering to life, as you turned to him with a grin. “By the way, you never told me I’d be learning on a truck born before the invention of electricity.”
Bucky narrowed his eyes at you. “If you’re gonna mock her, we can stop this lesson right now.”
“Kidding, kidding, she’s remarkable. A beauty. A testament to the ingenuity of the historic American manufacturing machine.”
“I’m sorry, remind me what I said about sass?”
“That you love it and I’m adorable? No? Sorry. Anyway, so now I put it into first.” You grasped the stick and maneuverer from neutral into first gear, Bucky visibly flinching at the grinding squeal the gears make as they catch.
“When you’re done stripping the gears, slowly let out the clutch and gently press the gas at the same time.”
Tossing an annoyed glance in his direction, you gripped the wheel tightly and slowly swapped the pressure, left leg to right, lightly toeing the gas pedal. With an almighty lurch, the truck leapt forward and died.
Christ. You could feel your earlier confidence rapidly leaving the building. Bucky just grinned, shaking his head. “It’s okay, common mistake. Try again.”
Dropping back into neutral, it took another three attempts to get the truck into first gear and actually moving forward.
Whooping excitedly, you gave a little wiggle in the seat as you rolled forward, picking up speed. “Fuck yeah, I’ve totally got this.”
“Alright speed racer, simmer down.” Bucky noted dryly. “You’ve gone 15 feet. Give it a little more gas, so you can switch into second.”
The excitement of momentary success briefly overshadowed perspective, and your foot stomped down on the gas pedal, throwing the truck forward and forcing your seatbelt to bite into your shoulder. Mercifully, you managed to keep it from stalling again, but suddenly you’re going faster. Your heart jumped, hammering in your ears and you felt sweat prickle on your forehead.
“Alright, I can smell the clutch burning, stop riding it.”
“You stop riding it!”
“What? That doesn’t even make sense.”
“You don’t make sense!
“Shit, I don’t fucking know, I’m panicking! How do I not ride the clutch?” You took your hands off the wheel briefly, putting air-quotes around the phrase “ride the clutch” and Bucky’s voice rose several octaves as he shot a hand out to take the wheel.
“What the hell are you doing, always keep your hands on the wheel! Ten and two at all times!”
Huffing loudly you slapped his hand away and took back control, his panic causing your nerves to snap, and your voice sharpened in response. “Bucky, it’s an empty parking lot, what the hell do you think will happen?”
Bucky looked nervously around – true, it was huge and empty, although there was a row of parking curbs and a couple shopping carts strewn about, all which suddenly became rather ominous targets. “I don’t know, a fiery crash and a slow burning death maybe?”
You roll your eyes, the sarcasm flooding your voice as the conversation between you both escalated. “Oh look, you’re hilarious. Could you maybe try to be a bigger drama queen?”
“I’m not being dramatic, I’m being realistic. Statistically the odds of dying in a car crash are higher – ”
“For fuck’s sake, please stop speaking, unless you can pull – out of your ass please – the statistics for total number of people who died of boredom waiting for the world’s oldest truck to go faster than a speeding snail.”
Neither of you are paying attention to the landscape at this point, although the truck continued to move along at a decent pace, choosing instead to sling colourful insults at each other, growing more and more childish with each turn of phrase. With an exasperated groan (following your standard ‘that’s what she said’ response), Bucky glanced out the window and in the next moment, threw out a metal hand to your left leg, gripping your knee and yanking it toward him, effectively sweeping both feet away from the pedals. The truck jerked to an immediate stop, shuddering before falling silent.
In the silence you freeze, panting slightly, before whipping around angrily. “What the actual fuck Bucky Barnes?! I had it under control, it was a god damn parking curb, what did you think would –” your rant is just starting to build up steam, but doesn’t get any further.
With a thoroughly frustrated growl, Bucky lunged forward, smashing his lips into yours. A smart way to shut you up, you had to admit. Your response was immediate and enthusiastic, heart racing for a new reason entirely, shivering slightly as Bucky’s beard scrapes along your cheek when he turns toward you. With a tangle of hands and tongues, you fought each other for control, before he pulled back to take a breath, resting his forehead against yours, and leaving you both slightly shocked at the turn of events.
“About fucking time,” you whisper. “I swear to god, you’ve been pushing my buttons for far too long without delivering. If I had known I needed to crash your truck to get a response, I would have tried that sooner,” your fingers twisted in his hair, holding him a breath away. “Did you see your life flash before your eyes?”
Bucky snorts, his shoulders shaking with laughter. “I swear to god woman, your fucking mouth,” he mutters with a grin, his hand still holding tight to your knee. “I can think of fifty better uses for it, beyond the ridiculous amount of sass and swearing you seem to have on autopilot. Maybe we head back and agree a few alternatives.”
You’re inclined to agree, it seems like the only logical solution considering you nearly died today, but there’s one minor issue. “I still can’t drive a manual. What the hell happens if I go somewhere and this is the only thing available? What am I supposed to do then?”
Bucky reaches to release your seat-belt and wraps an arm around you, easily dragging you across his lap (pausing a moment to give you a suggestive look), before depositing you in the passenger seat and sliding himself behind the wheel. Effortlessly, he starts the truck, flicks the stick into first, and smoothly takes off, before throwing you a cheeky grin. “I’ll teach you how to ride a bicycle.”
You glare at him.
“By the way baby – put your seat-belt on.”