1963-11-08 - Brothers once again
Summary: Clint finds out that Barney hasn't 'reported for work' and goes in search.
Related: Bad luck Betties
Theme Song: None
clint barney 

The temperature has dropped over night, leaving a sheen of frost on windows, at the very least. It's through this cold that somehow Barney Barton has walked, no, staggered and fallen to get back into something that vaguely resembled the City. On the outskirts, there are the remnants of industry, and that… that is as far as humanly possible that he's been able to go. The motorcycle was left behind; the front tire shot out and there wasn't any way he could push the 400 pound bike in his condition.

Now, Barney sits up on a concrete floor, back against a torn, aged brick wall, and he's shivering. Sitting under brick is cooler, even in the fall, so as the sun begins to warm the ground and surrounding areas, there is still that cold that hangs under the eaves. But, it was protection from any elements that might have happened… like rain.

A knife is in Barney's hand; a little pocket knife to serve as his emergency scalpel, but digging into his chest simply isn't working for him. Instead, his head is rocked back, and his eyes are closed, breathing is labored. This is one of those many times in his career that he's actually wondering if he's going to make it through. Such a baby.. lung collapse thanks to a bullet from Domino's gun, and kicked in the face.

Morning at SHIELD arrives with a phone call into the office from Junior Agent Spade. He's at the rendezvous point where he picks up Barton for the day, but there's no sign of the man… and he's looked. Every morning, Barney picks up his tail by passing a coffee cart before heading out to his activities for the day, and in the evening, loses them again before going home. It's something now that he's done for the last four, five days…

And now?

No Barney Barton.

So, apbs go out, and there is a hit on a motorcycle that looks like his, picked up and sent to impound in one of the neighboring hamlets. Bullet in the front tire…

This is a perfect way to train Junior Agents on the art of finding someone that may not want to be found! Go forth!

There are now four men (and women) on the hunt.

'This is not a drill.'


The other Barton had been put on the job only a day and a half ago. His return was without fanfare and he made no mention nor big deal of what had passed. He just quietly returned and went about his duty. It was just coincidence that it didn't involve dealing with his brother nor addressing the director's concerns about it and him. No. Work was what was needed right now.

Only now work was what aims him at his sibling. Whether or not it was welcome is anyone's guess.

The call went out, people paired up and moved out. Hawkeye's partner was an earnest and young recruit who talked enough for both of them. On the trip out it came up that they might need some supplies. It was while the kid was in the convenience store that Clint ditched him. Really. It was for the best.

That gave the agent a free hand on investigating into the disappearance of his brother. The motorcycle was checked, the initial trail gauged. The other two operatives were aimed in the most likely directions. Not the right one, of course, since that was the one that Clint took for himself. He wanted to be the one to find Barney. To be the first voice the man heard.

At first there was the crunch of footsteps in the debris of the burnt out building. Then, indeed, that voice.

"You look like shit."


Footsteps. Barney should care about those. Who the hell would find him in this shell of a building, seriously. To his credit, he does hear them before he catches the voice, and it's instinct that his left hand reaches for the pistol before it registers that he's still dealing with that damned dislocation remnant, courtesy of Director Carter. Still, it hurts less than if he'd used the muscles in his right, but the fatigue and pain still register, and the pistol lift is half-hearted at best.

If it had been anyone but the man that appears in front of him, or a certain medic, they'd be dead.

Barney's arm drops and he stares at the form and figure of his little brother. The one he'd pushed away so he wouldn't be 'tainted' with the perception of having a relation that is less than a law-abiding citizen. Or in his head, anyway.

"Your momma teach you to curse like that?" is muttered as he sets the pistol back next to him. "How many behind you?"


It's across the way that the man walks, approaching Barney with an easy gait even as he frowns, though the curve of his lip is only able to be discerned in a brief moment when the light from outside limns his face. He closes the distance, crouching slowly beside the injured man and his words are edged as he speaks, "Ditched my partner. Others are off hunting snipe. Figure it's just me your stuck with."

He frowns and reaches a hand out, gently probing the injuries and looking up at the man with. A scowl grows to prominence as he shakes his head. "You are a piece of work. And here the docs all said you were supposed to be good. Who did you let shoot you?"

As he says this, probably in part to distract Barney and give him something to focus on, Clint goes about realizing what's ailing his brother. Yeah, collapsed or collapsing lung drawing in breath and letting it into his chest cavity with every rough and ragged pull. That's the main thing for now.


"Always hated docs. Never did shit.." Barney mutters, his voice just never reaching anything beyond a hoarse whisper. Blue eyes watch his brother, a wariness settling in. It's a really strange thing, looking into the face of a man he thought was dead. He nods his acknowledgment on where everyone else is with a 'right'.

"They'd probably shoot me anyway. Last I heard that if I bucked, they were gonna try and put me down." Barney half smiles and tries to laugh, "Like that'd happen.."

Wince. The pain is evident from the show on his face at the attempted humor, and he exhales with a long, lingering breath. "Oh.. geez.. uh.. that goddamned albino. The one with a black eye. I was doing a thing and she apparently had the same idea. Rigged the house to blow, went to get the wife out. Whitey's target was the guy.. she shot the wife, I shot the guy because she pissed me off. She got me before I could get another shot." Hesitation. Barney can't shoot women and children… and when he shoots, he doesn't do it to wound. He shoots to kill.

"House blew up just after I got out."


"Dom," He says lightly in explanation even as he pushes on the wound and shaking his head as he starts to probe around the man's chest and side, looking for that pocket of air. He scowls. "That girl is becoming more trouble than she's worth."

He squints for a moment and then casually lifts a hand to his jacket. He's not dressed like the last time Barney saw him. None of that tactical black ops crap. No he's just another guy in jeans and a brown leather jacket with a white t-shirt. The fingerless gloves are new, of course, and then so is the switchblade.

"I'm going to stab you. You're going to be able to breathe. But then you'll still be a mess. If you pass out like a wuss," His lip twitches slightly, but he presses on. "You going to pull a tough guy bullshit thing and demand I not take you in for treatment?"


Barney squirms under the poking and prodding as it gets more obvious, and he's trying not to push him away, but damn… it hurts. "Jeez… Clint.. what th—" He coughs, but at least he has the grace to turn to the side, bringing up blood as he does. "Next time I see her, she's dead." There's a statement that shows that he's looking forward to pulling through all this.

Revenge is a good motivator.

"Stab me…?" There's the actual question. Does Barney actually trust his brother enough that he isn't going to try and kill him right there? Why would he? Why wouldn't he? "Jeez.. just just help me up.." as if he's going anywhere? Really?

"Tough guy bullshit. You remember Hilde.. the one you hit? She's a paramedic.. she might be home."


"Yeah, stab you." And it's at that moment that he puts action to those words. He'll feel the knife go in between the ribs, that burst of pain perhaps unexpectedly. But the thing is a moment later… two… and his lung begins to reinflate. Breathing becomes easier, steadier though still not as clean as normal. It's a stop gap measure. Hence why he starts to get the man to his feet.

"Yah, her. Alright, we'll get you to her place. Break in if we gotta, get her to deal with you." It's at that point that he pulls the man up by the arm, slipping to get a shoulder under him and brace him to his feet.

For a moment he steadies him and then says, "I'll have to come back and clean up a bit. Do me a favor and don't disappear again while I do that."


A hissed breath sounds from Barney and he goes stiff for a moment as the knife slides in between his ribs, his back straightening at the insult. "Oh god.." is whispered between clenched teeth. "Goddammit.. you didn't tell—" and in the next breath, he takes a hitched breath, and it's a little deeper. After a minute or two, his color looks a little less pale, but he's still in a lot of pain.

Now the trick of getting to his feet. Barney stumbles and is wobbly as hell, but he's on his feet with the aid of his brother. Once up.. he can lean against that wall, "Yeah," is muttered, though there's a little more strength behind it. More air. "I'll just take off now and you won't find me…" Sarcasm where he can! "I have a little bolthole. After Hilde gave up my apartment, I figured it wasn't safe no more. So, I moved. I'm in a place on the lower East Side. A place FBI's forgotten about. Place hasn't been touched since the 20s." He pauses to take a breath, "She's there with me now. For the time being."


"Alright then," Clint shakes his head as he starts to move Barney towards what passes for a door in that crummy building. He steps ahead slightly so he can shoulder it open and then lead the injured man through before he murmurs, "We go there. I ditch you, come back and take care of the details. Then head back to your bolt hole."

Reaching the outside, Clint starts to half-help half-drag his brother down the street heading towards the tan nondescript Ford falcon that awaits them. Once they get there he'll yank open the door and usher Barney into the backseat, getting hi situated laying down and then straightening up.

"Stay low. Keep your head down. And hold this to where I stabbed you." He tosses in a small compressed bandage towards the man before stepping around the car towards the driver's seat. The door slams behind him as he gets in and starts the vehicle up. "Alright, gimme the address."


Barney is unsteady on his feet and he is exhausted. But, he uses Clint as that extra; digging into the man's jacket with cold, dirty fingers to get that extra balance. Once in the car, he doesn't so much sit up as fall into it, more lying down with grunts of pain. Once he's right, he gets those bandages, and with weak, shakey fingers, pulls them from their wraps and presses it against the puncture wounds.

"53A Hester Street.. above the bakery." It's a brick building, an apartment towards the back, away from the building's facade. Barney closes his eyes, lying there in the back seat, and he can feel the tires spinning as they gain purchase on the road again.

"Clint?" He's almost ready to sleep, even though he knows it won't be that long before they're back into the city. "Glad you're alive."


The car revs and he adjusts the mirror looking into the back. If Barney had the angle he might have caught the glance that Clint gives him, the look of concern in his eyes and the small frown at the corner of his mouth. But there's no line of sight, no way he can see that look. But he might hear a hint of it in his tone of voice as he murmurs. "Yeah. Me too."

The car starts moving forwards, and they start to make their way back to the city.


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