1964-08-31 - Love And Stuff
Summary: Bucky and Kai have a friendly heart to heart.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
kai bucky 

Kai lies on the couch, his stereo on and playing Dylan. Kevin is under the chair he likes to be under, chewing on his rawhide bone. It's almost as big as he is, one of those big ones knotted at each end. He makes little 'rrr' sounds, so fierce. Kai, who has been staring at the ceiling up til now, says, "I worry that the price Amora will ultimately ask for the penthouse is you."

Bucky's putting things away from a shopping expedition. More hardware stuff than groceries, per se. He comes in with a copy of the Hobbit in hand, from a STrand bag. "I'm not for sale," he says, simply. "And I don't think I register with her long-term."

"See, that's the way I see it," Kai says. "You're not a piece of property, and even if it does come down to Asgardian haggling, Loki's not going to let you go. She doesn't have to want you long term to want you at all. I'm going to commission a lot of free artwork for her so that we can say we have something that we've given in exchange if it ever comes up. I'll take free stuff from anyone any day, but I get leery when Asgardians are involved."

He proffers the book to Kai, but his expression's ugly. "No one one gets to trade me like I'm a thing, not anymore," he says, and his voice is very low to keep it steady. "She's beautiful and kind and has been very generous to me, but I can't like her like I know she feels I should. I don't want her to see that, I don't want her as an enemy,but…..yeah."

Kai looks over at Bucky, about as solemn as he gets, which is quite, actually. He's got his own nightmares of having been treated like an object to be taken and passed around, ultimately destroyed. "I totally get where you're coming from," he says. "I'm deferential because of her position, and because she is a better friend than an enemy. I'm just saying don't worry. I will keep plying her with gifts. If I ever become famous, my paintings will be worth having in the long run."

"If you mean in terms of money, yeah," Bucky says, gently, as he sets the book down near Kai's hand. "They're already worth having," he adds. "I'm working on remembering how to draw for fun."

Kai glances to the book, then giving Bucky's arm a squeeze in passing. "I mean money, yeah," Kai says. He sits up, swiveling and reaches for his art bag. Drawing forth an untouched pad and some pencils, he offers them to Bucky. "Always draw for fun."

"Yeah," He accepts the pad and pencils, glances around the room. Settles his gaze on Kevin, and starts working. "That book's for you, by the way," he adds.

Kai picks up the book and looks it over. "For me? Thank you!" His solemnity softens into a smile. Kai loves presents, yes he does. Kevin meanwhile tries with all his might to bite through a loosened bit of rawhide, but he's still got a ways to go, worrying at it before it'll tear free.

His fingers move quickly, sketching in broad strokes. Buck's not really erasing as he works, not pausing for thought. He's drawing as a sniper does, someone who needs to catch a fast and accurate image in pencil to turn in for his superior's edification. What he comes up with, after that little bout of scratching, is a decent sketch of Kevin, albeit humorously broad - Kevin's maw is exaggerated, a little terror hound.

Kai reads the first few pages of the book while Bucky sketches. He smiles as he settles into reading. This is going to be enjoyable, and he has to tear himself away when the sketch is done. "I love it," he says. He considers Bucky, then says, "I wasn't in any real danger that night. Even high, I could've just wadded her up in a ball if I'd really wanted to."

That makes Bucky pause, as he turns the pad for Kai's admiration. "No," he says, quietly. "She's deadly, Kai. You're rough and tough and harder to kill than a human, but I wager she could do it. I taught her, Kai. She was my prize student and I bet she's better than me, now."

"She's still human," Kai points out. "When we were in Madripoor, I took a bazooka shot to the chest. Granted, from a distance, and I didn't shake it off immediately, it did knock the wind out of me, but I walked away from it. Besides, there's the element of surprise. She thinks I'm a normal human being. I know she's deadly, and she'd probably find a way, but not knowing your target is bulletproof is a serious disadvantage."

He looks as if he wants to argue, but nods at that. "I'm glad to hear it. Most of my friends are able to take care of themselves, thank God. But be wary. You can still be captured, Kai. And the Russians won't scruple to use you as a hostage."

Kai nods and says, "Oh no, I plan on being careful. I just don't want you to think that just because I didn't do anything that night that I couldn't have. You seem worried is all, and I hate to see you worried. You've carried the weight of the world enough, I think."

Buck sighs at that….and it is in clear relief. "I am worried. I knew they'd come, but….to have it confirmed. Thank God I've got at least some ties to SHIELD, now…"

"Yeah, you might want to lean on them," Kai says. "And Loki. You're under his protection. If someone tries to take you away, well. Remember when SHIELD tried to keep you away from us that one time?" He grimaces. That didn't work out well, but it does illustrate his point.

He grins at that, sourly. "Yeah. SHIELD does. And so do I. 've still got a talisman from Amora that she says would let me call her…."

"Be careful with that, man," Kai says. "She's a better friend than an enemy, but too many favors owed her way is a bad scene, you dig me? Don't get it twisted, I'm fond of Lady Amora. She can be super groovy. But all this power, man, it comes with a price."

He touches the charm beneath his shirt. "I know. I won't use it lightly. But there will be a time when that may be all I have to call on…."

"And whatever the cost, Loki and I will pay it," Kai says with a small smile and a pat on the metal arm. "We'll take care of you, Bucky. You're not fighting your fight alone anymore. You've got SHIELD, you've got us, and I just know Steve is going to be in your corner."

That has him dropping his gaze, suddenly. Amazing how that trust in him can hit the soft spots, sometimes. "Thanks," he says, quietly.

Kai says gently, "Anytime, Bucky. After everything we've been through together, you and me, we've got a bond no one else will ever really understand." He smiles a little. "Your fight is my fight. That's just the way it's going to be from now on."

He muses on that for a little, silent. "I gotta do something about my brothers," he says, after a little. "I'm glad I can talk about them to you, to Steve…."

"Of course," Kai says. "If you want me to go meet them, see if I see you in any of them, just name a time and date." He smiles wryly. "Steve could, too. He knows you better than I do. I worry about him, though. He takes on so much. But I bet he'd go through Hell for you."

That makes Buck look up, wryly. "Steve already has. But you're right. I think I'm gonna need him, though, for this. And you'll see me. It's really weird, honestly."

"I can imagine. Actually, I can't. If I ended up with copies of myself, I don't know what I'd do. You're handling it all rather rationally, I think." He stretches, then snaps his fingers so Kevin will come over to him, but Kevin has his rawhide bone, and he's not taking summons right now. Kevin eyes him, then just shakes his head.

"IT's freaky, honestly," Bucky admits. "Really so. It was one thing when my story was just…contained in me, if that makes sense? But…now it's beyond me. These poor kids…." He shudders. "I owe them."

"It was beyond you before them, though, Buck," Kai says. "This redheaded woman, she's part of your story too, clearly. She knows you, she has feelings of some sort for you. The gods only know how many lives have been interwined with yours. That's living for you. But yeah, this is different. I don't know that you owe them, but the fact you think you do shows me you've really got Winter under wraps."

He turns that pale gaze on Kai again. "He's locked away," he says, softly. "He's not dead, though. Not gone. I may need him again, before all this is done. But….yeah."

"Do you think you'll ever be able to integrate?" Kai asks. "He's part of you, for good or bad. Even if you could erase him, it might not be the best idea. You dig, man? I mean you'd have to be in control, but…"

"I think you're right," Bucky concedes, wearily. "I'd lose too much in the process of digging him out." HE sighs, looks down to his sketch book again, and then holds his hand out to Kevin, clicking his tongue.

Kevin looks up. He's got his rawhide bone, though. Still, he's had himself a good chew, and Bucky is more of a novelty than Kai, so he leaves it alone and ambles over to Bucky, licking at his fingers. Kai looks at the dog blandly. "Such loyalty," he says. "Kev, you're unclear who the master is around here." Loki. Kai couldn't master a stuffed animal tea party.

Buck reaches down, heaves the pup into his lap, turns him over to scratch his belly. Kevin lolls his tongue and looks stoned. He chuckles at that. "Loki," he clarifies. "Loki's the boss. I still can't believe I know the guy."

Lindon laughs. "Yeah, all right. He's got Kevin so spoiled anyway." The little dog's leg hitches as his belly is scratched. Kai ruffles his ears, and that gets harder wagging and licked fingers. Kai is a favored person, just not always obeyed. "I can't believe I know him either. The first time I saw him, I thought I was going to die. I was so afraid of Asgardians."

Buck blinks at that. "…..damn," he says, looking up from Kevin. "….how did you end up with him, anyhow?"

"We met at a coffee shop," Kai says. "I panicked but he pinned me so I couldn't get away, and I was so into him, but he's Asgardian, right?" He laughs quietly. "I went to his bookshop because even though he was 'the enemy' I couldn't stay away. We circled each other a bit, and then we just…" He shrugs and smiles. "We went for it. I mean all over this damn apartment."

He did ask. He did. Bucky looks down at Kevin, as if in search of sympathy. "I see," he says, drily.

Kevin's eyes lid. Happy dog is happy, but no particularly sympathetic. Kai beams at Bucky, and he says, "After that we don't spend much time apart. I fell hard, and so did he. I still can' believe it sometimes, someone with his power and majesty wants to hitch his wagon to someone like me."

Buck offers a little smile in return. "Love's so often like that, right?" he ventures, continuing to rub Kevin's belly.

Kai says, "I hear you, my friend. I don't know if this will last or it won't, but I'm going to say yes, it will. He went through Hel to find me. If love doesn't get any truer than that, I don't know what to tell you." He sighs, wistful. Loki. Then he tells Bucky, "You'll have that someday. When you're ready."

He shakes his head at that, gently. "That's about as true as it gets," he agrees. "And there's no way to know until you try."

"Exactly," Kai says, giving Bucky a hard look. "You never know til you try. Just remember you're still a human being, okay? A young, good-looking guy with a whole future ahead of him."

Buck, for his part, just looks bland. "Of course," he says, making Kevin pedal a paw, lazily. Not looking Kai in the eye, either.

Kai gives a knowing nod. "Uh huh. Just don't close that door forever, all right? Love brings out our best selves." He chews his lip, then admits, "And our worst, sometimes, but mostly it's what grounds us in this world, makes us whole, man. You've got to, like, open your mind and let yourself feel it."

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