There are those who believe that many of today’s problems have arisen because of feminine emancipation. This argument, however, is not valid, ‘it is false, untrue, a form of male chauvinism.’ The equal dignity of men and women makes us rejoice to see old forms of discrimination disappear, and within families there is a growing reciprocity. If certain forms of feminism have arisen which we must consider inadequate, we must nonetheless see in the women’s movement the working of the Spirit for a clearer recognition of the dignity and rights of women.
“Then very slowly and deliberately, he removed his cloak, came back across the room with the firelight making one glorious blaze of his scarlet and gold, and stood gazing down at me in silence, a quizzical, faintly amused glint in his sleepy eyes, as if he were waiting for me to shriek, or cower, or swoon away, like a well-bred girl with the instincts of a lady. Unfortunately, as Aunt Susanna often remarked, “I entirely lacked the instincts of a lady… .”
#LiteraryCrushMonth continues with a more obscure (?) book–The Sherwood Ring by Elizabeth Marie Pope! Yay!
I *loved* this book growing up! The story was about a young girl named Peggy who is sent to live with her curmudgeon-y Uncle Enos in upstate New York. Upon her arrival, Peggy soon realizes that the ancestral home is haunted by four amiable 18th century ghosts–Richard Grahame and sister Barbara, Eleanor Shipley, and Peaceable Drummond Sherwood. Each ghost tells Peggy their interwoven tales of Revolutionary War era New York in an effort to help her solve an heirloom mystery.
Anyhoo, Barbara and Peaceable were my favorite ghosts! Is it possible to have a crush on a couple?? I guess so. Basically, Peaceable Sherwood is a professional pompous know-it-all Tory officer that Richard Grahame is trying to capture (to no avail). When he first meets his nemesis’ little sister, Barbara he makes the mistake of underestimating her in a big way, ha ha. After she accidentally stumbles upon Peaceable’s hide out, not only does Barbara easily incapacitate the snarky Sherwood in a matter of minutes, but she manages to free her brother, escape the Tory soldiers, and steal Peaceable’s heart in the process because she’s a BOSS.
The book has a great cast of fun lady characters (esp. for a book written in the 50s) and lots of goofy romance and history and spoopy/polite ghosts and smart writing and I am definitely going to re-visit it this summer! Yeah, nostalgia!
Guys, I loved this episode so much, even though it messed with all of my OTP fangirl feels.
It was so good, and once again, we had a great episode that was made even greater by the absence of The Human Vibrator. Next week seems to be all about him though, but we’ll tackle that later in predictions.
Anyway, let’s do this.
What I Hated
Seriously guys, you couldn’t find a wig that at least looked like it belonged on his head?
What I Liked and Loved
1. Olivia dreaming of her kidnapping interspersed with images of Fitz.
Ugh. Baby Girl is going through so much right now.
Did you all notice that her dreams had a pattern to them? First we saw images of her kidnapping, specifically of her running towards the red door, running towards a perceived safety, then we saw when she first met Fitz, then back to the kidnapping and running, then back to her and Fitz in the Oval, then she dreamt of her throwing the ring at him, then she was running towards the red door, then other images of other key Olitz moments, including when Fitz ran out the clock for her, then lots of her running towards the red door, then throwing the ring at him.
I decided to slow-mo Liv’s dream to see what order the images were coming in. Here’s what I got:
1. When she first met Fitz (The Trail) 2. Running towards the red door 3. Her and Fitz making love in the Oval (Happy Birthday Mr President) 4. Liv throwing the ring at Fitz 5. Running towards the red door 6. Fitz crying in her arms after his dad’s funeral (Episode 211) 7. Ring throwing 8. Running towards the door 9. Fitz running out the clock with her (episode 220) 10. Running towards the red door 11. Them making love in the Oval 12. Running towards the red door 13. Throwing the ring 14. Running towards the red door 15. Throwing the ring 16. Fitz crying in her arms after his dad died 17. Fitz running out the clock with her 18. Running towards the red door 19. Throwing the ring 20. Running towards the red door 21. Throwing the ring 22. Running towards the red door 23. Throwing the ring 24. Running towards the red door 25. Throwing the ring 26. Red door 27. Throwing the ring 28. Red door 29. Ring 30. Red door
Now isn’t that interesting? I found it fascinating that as the dream went on, the images that recurred the most were those of her trying to run to safety and her throwing the ring at Fitz. It was almost like she was equating the fact that she couldn’t reach the door, with her throwing the ring at him. I wish I could hear from the writers themselves about what the dream really symbolized.
2. Olivia calling everybody but Jake to help with the Cyrus situation.
Yes, I’m petty, but that shit made me happy as fuck.
3. Cyrus: “I want that whore out of my house”
Cyrus about to give himself another heart attack.
4. “Gentleman Johns”
Great name for a gay bar.
5. Cyrus: "It sounds like a shotgun wedding" Liv: "It is, and you’re the pregnant bride"
6. Cyrus: “There hasn’t been a good time” Liv: "Of course not, it’s impossible to find time to do something that you don’t wanna do, funny how that works.“
There’s something quite delicious about this happening to Cyrus. The person who never hesitates to make people do shit that they don’t want to do. I’m really happy that Liv called him out on his crap. If anybody knows what it’s like to do something they don’t want to do, it’s Olivia Pope. Her entire relationship in one way or the other has been about doing the opposite of what she wants to do, in order to keep Fitz in the White House.
7. Liv: "We need the White House. There is no bigger stage, there is no bigger moment.”
I’m still puzzled as to why it wouldn’t have been a better option to simply call the wedding off, but I guess having a big splashy gay wedding at the White House would definitely change the conversation.
8. Cyrus: "We have bills to pass, we need the Teapartiers to pass them. He has yet to publicly express his views on same sex marriage and he can’t rock the boat with Mellie’s senate campaign on the horizon. I can’t pile on and bother the president with my hooker problems.“
So Liv has to come up with a plan that doesn’t put Fitz in jeopardy, politically.
9. Mellie: "A White House wedding? A gay Republican White House wedding?”
Olivia: “Hosted by the First Lady, and more importantly, the Republican candidate for senator of Virginia. Posting an historic White House wedding would be the perfect platform for a candidate who’s looking to transition from a social figurehead to someone who’s engaging at the forefront one of our most divisive issues of our time. A leader, taking a bold step towards the right side of history. Breaking with her husband’s beliefs. Decisively. Unapologetically. Publicly. Never once considering asking the president’s permission, because this is something you feel. In your heart. In your gut. Politics should never stand in the way of fundamental rights for an oppressed population of law-abiding Americans. That yours is the party of Lincoln, that love, is love. To be celebrated, never relegated or regulated.”
Man, Olivia played Mellie like a fiddle. She knows her so well. And she knows that Mellie’s ambition leaves little room for any kind of questioning or clarity of thought, when it comes to pushing up her presidential aspirations. Bravo Liv! This was such a great way of getting what she wanted without compromising Fitz. She also didn’t do Mellie’s future potential run any harm.
Did y'all peep that self-satisfied smile on Olivia’s face when Mellie was doing exactly what she asked her to do?
10. Janet: "I am Cyrus Beene and I would make a great controller“
Oh man, I loved the flashbacks to Cyrus and his wife. She seemed like she was such a good person. Somebody who really loved him.
11. Cyrus: ”You know what, why don’t we get married?“
The fact that Cyrus didn’t have a ring prepared, and took his own ring off to propose to Janet tells you how spontaneous the whole marriage idea was. Especially as they’d only been dating a few months. Marry in haste repent at leisure Cyrus Beene.
12. Janet: ”You better not be joking. I am Catholic, I have been saving myself and I can’t just get divorced..“
Ooops. Talk about doomed from the start.
13. Fitz: ”I hear we’re running a quickie wedding service out of the White House now.“
All the lols.
14. Fitz: "Who’s idea was this?” Abby: “The First Lady just announced it.” Fitz: "Mellie did not think of this.“
Fitz knows that his wife ain’t shit.
15. Abby: "The president’s views remain unchanged.”
Even though publicly nobody really knows what his views are either way. It was such a smart move by Olivia to use Mellie to get this done.
16. Mellie: "I am doing this for you.“ Cyrus: "Are you? Are you Ma'am? How generous, how selfless. I cannot tell the difference between you and Mother Teresa.”
So much shade at Mellie from Cyrus here. We all know that Mellie isn’t doing this for anybody but Mellie.
17. Michael: “Is there any way we can do this without my parents, Cyrus, please?”
The panic on his face though.
18. Ronnie: "Are we still in for racquetball next week?“
So that’s what the kids are calling it these days? How does Cyrus manage to get all these pretty good looking dudes by the way?
19. Sally Langston: ”The spray-tanned former gigolo.“
Yesssss, Sally’s back! Man I’ve missed that hypocritical bible-thumping bitch like she was my best friend!
20. Lizzie: ”Casting your lot with Olivia Pope, backing this terrible idea without checking with me, your campaign manager. What in the hell was that?“
21. Mellie: "We are not partners. We are not friends. You work for me. You fix for me. You don’t accuse me. You do not judge me. You most certainly do not lecture me. You are not me. You wish you were me, but you can’t be me. Remind yourself of that. Do you understand?”
Well that told Lizzie. Although, that speech seemed like something she’d have loved to say to Olivia Pope, but chose to say to a less powerful target.
22. Liz scurrying away like the rat she is after Mellie gives her a tongue lashing.
Girl where’s your backbone?
23. Abby: "You played me.“
Even though Leo and Abby have way better chemistry than her and David, this is why I can’t get on board with them. Leo is a snake and a sleaze, and didn’t even a bat an eye-lid at Abby catching him betraying confidential conversations. I know that she’d do the same, but once again, what’s healthy about mutual betrayals?
24. Leo: ”You poked the hole in the condom, not me. I kept it wrapped up.”.
So many lols.
25. Cyrus: “You need to stay on your side of my house.“
Ugh. Cyrus stays being a hypocritical ass.
26. Janet: ”I definitely never knew it could be different….I am lonely here Cy, with you. It has been 16 years and I barely know you. Being with you is a lonely experience.“
27. Janet: ”How about I will admit I’m not having an affair, if you will admit that you are gay?“
28. James: "Cyrus, are you ok? Because if this is happening too fast, tell me.”
I love the fact that Cyrus literally walked out of the closet from the flashback about the end of his first marriage, into his bedroom with James on his bed. If that was intentional, then bravo to the writers and Regina King for that great piece of direction.
29. Olivia: "No one is calling anything off. No one is quitting. Not until I’ve tried everything. Everything. Is that clear?“
Lol at Mellie shutting the fuck up, then resentfully mimicking Olivia’s ”Ok then.“ Man she’s so salty that she can’t be Olivia.
30. Olivia’s hair and dress in Cyrus’s flashback to his and James’ wedding.
I love how much softer she looked back in the day. I wish she’d wear dresses more often…
31. James:"I want to be Cyrus Beene’s husband, and I wanna be a journalist, but I don’t want to be ‘Cyrus Beene’s husband, the journalist…” Cyrus: "I’m never gonna ask you to do that, compromise your principles, or to influence your work. I love you too much for that.“
Man, when I think of how badly Cyrus fucked up James just before Jake murdered him.
32. Olivia’s second dream sequence scene;
1. Flashback to her and Fitz making love in the Oval. 2. Throwing the ring at Fitz. 3. The red door 4. Throwing the ring at Fitz. 5. the red door. 6. Fitz crying in her arms after his dad’s funeral. 7. The red door. 8. Throwing the ring. 9. The red door 10.The image of the clock that Fitz was running out with her. 11. The red door 12. Throwing the ring 13. Running towards the red door 14. Throwing the ring 15. The red door 16. Throwing the ring 17. The red door 18. Throwing the ring 19. The red door 20. Throwing the ring 21. The red door. 22. Throwing the ring.
Once again, Olivia seems to be equating the red door that she can’t reach to safety with throwing the ring at Fitz. Maybe the loss of that ring means that she can’t reach safety without it?
33. Fitz: ”Don’t you love Vermont?“
Fitz wearing the Navy sweater that Olivia clutched while crying over him in the presidential closet, when he was shot was kind of everything. Shonda knows that Olitzers pay attention to those kinds of details.
34. Fitz: “It’s a ring. Very old. Rare. One of a kind. It even has a name. Doux Bebe. It was my great-grandmother’s. Her father bought it for her at auction in Paris. She wore it at her Debutante ball. And I was supposed to give it to my wife and I didn’t. It just never felt right, so I kept it. And now I know why, because I was supposed to give it to you.”
So many feels. So damned many.
35. Fitz: “You don’t have to love me. You don’t have to come back to me. But if you could wear this…if I could know that you were wearing this. Then even if you hate me, I’ll know we’ll be okay. I’ll know you’re out there.”
I loved that Fitz said this. It wasn’t him being manipulative or possessive, or him trying to “rob her of her agency”, a charge that regularly gets aimed at him by Haters. He just wanted a connection to her. One that told him that they were ok, regardless of what she was doing, or even who she was doing.
Dear God, my feels over this entire scene was off the charts. Yes I ugly cried, and I’m not ashamed to admit it. Olivia was so torn. We know why she left the White House, she’d left for his sake as well as for herself. She was protecting him like she always does. Protecting him from her treacherous mistake, trying to make sure that their association didn’t tarnish his reputation and his presidency. Trying to make sure that she didn’t ruin him.
I genuinely don’t see how anybody could watch that scene and not feel moved. Olakers don’t count because they generally tend to hate Fitz more than they love Jake. For them, Jake not being Fitz is all they really give a shit about, because otherwise, they wouldn’t give two fifths of a fuck about him.
It’s funny, but I was terrified that they were going to have sex, and the relief I felt when it ended with Olivia just hugging him was immense. We know how hot these two are together, but that scene would have been ruined if they’d got all hot and heavy. It just wouldn’t have been appropriate, and would have ruined a really beautiful moment between them. This was Olitz at their best to me.
36. Olivia: ”I could never hate you“
All the tears. Dammit. Olitz for life, people.
Honestly, I just don’t see how Shonda isn’t going to have these two people end up together. I don’t see how the writers are going to have her choose The Human Vibrator over Fitz. Not after this episode. I think the choice to not have Jake in the episode was a very deliberate one. They’re telling us that no matter what happens with Fitz, Jake is not the one, and he never will be. He’s not the one who keeps her awake at night. He’s not the one that makes her heart ache. He’s not the one that she wants to protect to her detriment. He’s not even worthy of getting mad at. He’s simply not the one that she truly wants. Some people might want to deny that she loves Fitz, but that’s their business. I think what’s on the screen is pretty clear. Their back and forth is annoying, but the fact is, Fitz is who she wants, not the spy who choked her.
37. Fitz: ”I just want you to be happy.“
I’m so back on board the Olitz ship. No half measures.
38. Fitz seeing Liv’s ring-less finger.
I loved that he didn’t even mention it. You could see that it hurt him, but he just carried on and I loved that. Back when the writers were trying to make him out to be the devil, they would have had him petulantly mention the fact that she wasn’t wearing the ring. This way, haters can’t say that he pressured Olivia. If and when she decides to put the ring back on, it will be entirely her choice, and I’m such a huge fan of that.
Also, I love that he didn’t even hesitate to sign off on offering Sally Langston the position of Secretary of State. The woman who’d double crossed him and tried to oust him from the White House. The woman who even now was trying to bring him and his administration down. All he knew was that Olivia wanted it done, and that was that. Gah, I loved that he just calmly gave her what she wanted. But then I guess when you’ve taken the country to war to save this very woman, offering an arch enemy a job is a piece of cake, huh?
39. Fitz: "You went around my back to Mellie.” Liv: "I did.“ Fitz: "Nice move.”
Ugh. Fitz had so much pride in her. I loved that he understood that she’d been trying to avoid compromising him politically, by fracturing his already tenuous relationship with the Teapartiers and members of his own party even more.
40. Olivia: "But to be clear, you’ll be throwing Michael to the wolves to save yourself.“
Olivia seemed surprised that Cyrus Beene would make such a choice. Has she not met him before? The guy nearly had his husband killed, and was ready to nuke her black ass, when she was kidnapped. Cyrus ain’t loyal to anybody but Fitz.
41. ”You think we approve of this? Of you? Of what you are? You think we spent all those money sending you to camp to fix you, only to have you to end up like this? You make me sick to my stomach. Both of you.“
Well Michael’s parents sure won’t win any Great Parenting awards any time soon. The way that they spoke to him though. I felt so much for Michael in this scene. It totally reminded me of how Liv used to be with her dad. Head down, shoulders down, eyes down. Submissive and child-like. You could see that he wanted to just curl up and cry his heart out. My heart kinda broke for him. Nobody deserves parents like his. You could see that Cyrus even felt the same way, despite their differences.
42. Cyrus taking the tie despite James asking him not to, and manipulating him into helping fix a political situation for him.
Man, he didn’t even wait until after the honeymoon to break his promise. Cyrus Beene, you’re the worst.
43. Olivia wearing white!
Yessss, I never thought I’d miss that overdone color so much!
44. Olivia: ”We’re not throwing Michael under the bus.“
Oh thank God.
45. Olivia; ”If you go ahead with this, trying to take down Cyrus, I’ll tell the world about another sham marriage, the one between you and Daniel Douglas.“ Sally: "You would defame a dead man.” Olivia: "Only because you’re defaming a live one.“
I don’t know why Sally Langston even thought for a moment that Liv wouldn’t attempt to blackmail her using what she knows about her and Daniel Douglas’ marriage. I loved this scene so much. I love Liv being badass, and fixing shit, and I love Sally’s bible-thumping shady ass.
46. Michael: I’m one of those people who’s been picturing my wedding since I was a teenager. I believed. Even in my stupid hometown with my stupid parents and idiot guys who threw rocks at me every day, I believed. Even when I was working as a pro, my worst nights on the streets, I still believed. I believed that someone was gonna love me, care about me, that I wouldn’t be alone, and it is my wedding day, and you hate me. You would murder me with your bare hands if you thought you could get away with it and I have no one who would even miss me. I have nothing. It is the day I’ve been dreaming of and I have nothing. Cyrus: You’re wrong, you know. I would never murder you myself. That’s a rookie move. I’d pay a professional to do it.
Man this scene made me cry so hard. I was so happy that Cyrus found his humanity for a minute. I really hope that they make it, even if Cyrus is an asshole. After all, they had a genuine attraction even back when Michael was trying to play him.
47. Cyrus: “You’re wondering what this is going to look like, our life. And I could lie to you right now. That’s how both of my other marriages began, with lies, so I could lie to you right now. I could tell you there’s a chance we will warm to one another, maybe fall in love and live happily ever after. I could lie, but I won’t. We’re not going to fall in love, and that is a relief to me because I cannot disappoint you. I cannot hurt you anymore than I already have. I cannot destroy your image of me or break your heart or damage your soul. You don’t believe in me, so I have nothing in you to break. I am on no pedestals. You see me for what I am. A filthy monster desperately trying to hold on to the last shreds of its humanity. You are a good person. I know that. Ella could use a good personin her life. I’m not promising much, but I will promise this. I may not do it well, but I will do my best to be your someone so you’re not alone. Okay? You’re not alone.”
This is literally the most honest that Cyrus has ever been, and I’m here for it.
48. Fitz seeing the ring back on Liv’s finger.
I love Olitz at their best. When the writers just let them do what they do best. Be in love, show their love in all the ways that count. Can you imagine how great they could have been had the writers not done their level best to destroy them?
Man, that was such a great episode, made even greater because Jake Ballard wasn’t there. It really felt like vintage Scandal. The writing was good, the case of the week was excellent because it involved somebody that we cared about, or at least knew, and was invested in.
I’ve said it before, but I really think that Shonda meant to tell this story at some point. We all knew there was a story, but Shonda was never going to tell it until she was ready. Apparently folks have been going in on her for lying, but what’s the point? She finally gave us what we wanted, even if it was a ratings ploy, I literally couldn’t give two shits. I’m just happy that we got a poignant and beautiful Olitz flashback moment, and that Olivia put the ring back on herself. At least the Fitz Haters have no way of spinning that Fitz made her do it. She did it of her own volition and it was a beautiful thing. Suck it haters.
I’ve seen Olitzers bemoan the fact that next week she apparently sleeps with Russell even though she’s got the ring on, and honestly people questioning that, like she hadn’t already been sleeping with her very own portable vibrator, whilst wearing said ring, made me scratch my head. Where have you people been? She wore it the entire time she went away to Zanzibar with Jake. We clearly saw the ring while Jake was fingering her on the beach. Liv having sex with another guy while wearing the ring, means nothing. Fitz knows that it’s not a promise to be faithful, and he’s been mostly fine with it, and even if he isn’t, as long as he’s still attached to his particular ball and chain, he knows he has no right to expect celibacy or fidelity from her. Olivia sleeping with Russell while wearing the ring doesn’t negate the importance of the ring, or the significance of her putting it back on. So yeah, pipe down whingers.
Having seen the promo, it seems clear that the show wants us to think that Jake is turning into a maniac. As much as I’d like to believe that they’re finally ready to show us how crazy he is, don’t know if I trust it completely. ABC promos lie. They lie blatantly. I don’t see how anybody can spin "I’ll kill Liv” into anything positive, but I’m damned sure the powers that be will give it a go. I’m more inclined to believe that Russell will turn out to be yet another person who was sent in to sleep with Olivia, and that will make me so damned mad.
If the episode doesn’t turn out to be quite so anti-Jake, then what does it mean that ABC have done a promo almost promising that Jake would be turning into a fully-fledged bad guy? It means that they know that the Jake Ballard character aint shit, and that they’re aware that people are waiting for him to die. I mean… that’s hardly a ringing endorsement is it?
By the way, if it does turn out that Jake is as crazy as we’ve always known that he was, I think it will have something to do with when he went to visit Rowan to ask for help with Olivia. I’m thinking that Rowan said something to him, much in the same way that he did with Huck back in season 3, when he killed that guy who was threatening to expose what really went on with Operation Remington. Maybe he’s been given his orders by Rowan?
Either way, I’m bracing myself for way too much Jake on my screen.
Watching Scott Foley make a hash out of his lines is not my favorite thing to do.
Anyway, seeing as the writers regained their senses this episode, here are some Jamie and Claire and Live and Fitz GIFs to end with.
I really like the contrast in this scene of her bare hands in the first gif and the focus on his ringed left hand in the second gif: the reason she can no longer wear the ring he gave her is because he still hasn’t taken off his wedding band. He signs the document and she walks off while he looks at her longingly. One interpretation is that he didn’t meet his part of his bargain so their transaction is over. Of course, she is a big reason why he’s still wearing his wedding band.
According to Huck “She wears it for HIM, she never takes it off” and then Kerry and Tony both confirmed that Fitz gave it to her. So I have spent a good amount of time trying to figure out when Fitz gave it to Olivia, I did this because some have speculated that it was during his first campaign. But according to these screencaps she did not have it during the campaign nor did she have it when she was communications director or when she resigned BUT, she has had it from when we first see her in OPA which means in my thinking that leaves the time between when she resigned and the Amanda debacle. However we are lead to believe they have not seen each other at all during that time. That doesn’t mean he couldn’t have sent it to her but I don’t like that idea because we all want a juicy flashback of him giving it to her. But we also know they could have actually seen each maybe one more time, you never know anything could happen!
Then there is also this picture that throws a spanner in the works because we would assume its from the campaign or maybe the first one hundred days when they were at Camp David, but then Huck says she NEVER takes it off so this picture is just an anomaly for me.
ps: damn girl you love that necklace :P
HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS BOUT OF OBSESSING OVER THE DAMN RING
At first, the Nazis made his friends wear the yellow stars on their clothes. There were others who wore triangles - pink, red, purple and black - all to mark those who were different and undesirable in Hitler’s Reich.
And then, the Nazis took them all away. Everyone thinks they are simply set to work in those camps, slaving away to make more guns and tanks and planes and ships for Hitler’s armies. But there are whispers that other things are happening to them. Terrible things. Unspeakable things.
Karol fingers his rosary and whispers the Ave and in every syllable there is the thought: Mother, these are your people. Mother, keep them safe from harm - Jurek and Tesia and Ginka…. all of them. Mother, please let them all come home.
He himself has not emerged from this war unscathed. Even now, his shoulder aches from that accident. Even now, he wakes up from nightmares, hearing the Gestapo marching around, knocking down doors with their heavy boots.
His prayers are interrupted by a furtive knock in a certain pattern on his door. Karol knows then that there is someone in need.
He is confronted by two Americans and a tiny girl in a blue dress, with that accursed yellow star. The dark-haired one is leaning heavily on his friend. There is blood on his shoulder.
He quickly lets them in.
“We couldn’t leave her behind,” the other American tells him. His uniform is strange - the shirt is a bright blue with a white star on the breast, partially covered by his brown leather jacket.
“No, we couldn’t - but getting shot still hurts like a sonuvabitch,” his friend grits out. He hisses through his teeth as Karol begins to disinfect the wound.
“I’m sorry, Buck."
"Don’t be sorry - you had to shield the kid first." The brunette winks at the little girl - who couldn’t have been more than four or five. She giggles. "That oversized fucking frisbee of yours has to be good for something.”
“Language!" The blonde man is carrying a shield, its colors of red white and blue dulled with dust and grime, with a white star in the middle. It is the same star, in fact, on his shirt. Karol finds himself smiling. It is an unusual, yet fitting weapon for a soldier.
"Sorry about that, Father. Bless us for we have sinned etc. etc.” “Buck” is clearly unrepentant.
“I’m still studying,” Karol answers with a wry grin. “But you will be added to my prayers.”
“We could always use those,” says the blond American with the star on his chest. “Will she be safe with you? I don’t know if we can ever find her people. The Gestapo came first…. but HYDRA would have finished things." His mouth is set in a grim line but there is grief in his eyes.
Karol nods. His throat is tight. "I know where she can be hidden in safety. Thank you." And still to be raised in the faith of her fathers and her mothers, so she would not ever forget.
Later, Karol will start calling the blond American "Stefan” instead of his given name of Steve and his friend Buck will join in the good-natured teasing. Later, they will laugh, because the little girl - Rozalia - will need this little bit of brightness and comfort after her own sobbing nightmares. Later, Stefan will give Rozalia his last bit of chocolate before he and Buck make their farewells.
When they are gone, Karol will add them to his prayers - entrusting them to the Blessed Mother in Heaven - with Jurek and Tesia and all his other friends. He prays that they remain safe. He prays that all of them will live through these terrible days.
He prays that they will all come home.
Karol finds himself weeping when he learns that Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes were among those who had fallen.
Many, many years later, Karol’s friend Jurek will be at his barber’s when white smoke wafts up from the Vatican. Jurek will be the first to greet his friend when he sits upon the Papal throne.
This is MY Captain, a Blanket Fort Headcanon
In real life, Pope John Paul II granted his first audience to his Jewish best friend Jerzy “Jurek” Kluger. When Kluger tried to kneel and kiss the Papal ring, the Pope stopped him. “You must never bow your knee to me, Jurek. Stand straight as you always have.”