Ima be that person and... Alright I'll leave you alone - tuckington?
“Did you know?”
Washington turns to see Tucker framed in the doorways, his hands curled into fists. The new armor he wears makes Washington feel automatically uneasy, to see the domed helmet of his friend Maine and his monstrous parter the Meta on someone else’s head. He dismisses the pair of foot soldiers he’d been lecturing and starts to walk off the field, slowly, expecting Tucker to follow.
“Did I know what?” he asks, though he has his suspicions.
“Epsilon’s plan to kill himself. Again.” Tucker is keeping up, his voice low and aimed to injure. “Did you know?”
“I didn’t,” he says.
“Would you have told me if he had?”
That one isn’t as easy to answer. And it doesn’t get any easier when Tucker grabs his shoulder and spins him around.
“I said,” and even though Washington knows that Tucker is’t really the Meta, he can clearly hear Omega through his voice, “would you have fucking told me?”
Off guard, Washington reverts to regulations. “If it was important, I–”
Tucker shoves him away and storms off; alarms are starting to go off in Washington’s brain, echos and parallels of the corrupting influence of the original AIs, and he all but jobs to catch up.
“Tucker, you know I’d never–”
“No, I don’t,” and his only warning is the buzz of the sword but its enough to jump back before he loses a limb. “I don’t know fuck all about what to expect from you anymore. Or anyone. You stupid,” Tucker’s voice cracks, and he spins to slash at the nearest object, a set of old Warthog tires that squeal and sizzle under the plasma blade, “fucking Freelancer pieces of shit. Both of you. All of you.”
“All right,” Washington says slowly, completely lost, “I’ll leave you alone for right now. I’ll come back a little later and we can–”
“No you won’t.”
Tucker plunges his blade one last time, as deep as he can, into the heap of molten rubber and kills the blade. His shoulders are shaking, and Washington sees the flash of multicolored AI hover at the back of his head; purple, then yellow and pale cyan.
“You’ll never come back. I– we– nobody every comes back to Blue Team once they leave. We’re not worth it to them.”
“Church,” Washington breathes in the silence. “You’re not upset about Epsilon. You’re upset about losing Church.”
“Three times, man,” he says; fragile and fallible and yet still so goddamn strong. “Three times, he had a choice, and never once has he picked us.”
Washington approaches Tucker with caution, laying a hand gently on his shoulder and coaxing him away from the melting tires. “Have you let Grey check you out, yet?”
“Not that I know of, but who could resist these buns and thighs, huh?” It’s the first he’s sounded like himself since the end of the Hargrove mission, and Washington finds their fingers laced together as they walk. He can’t really say he doesn’t like it, either.
“Let’s go see how she’s doing, okay?”
“Okay, Washington,” Tucker says, and squeezes his hand.