Chapter 1

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A bead of sweat falls down their face. A pale hand quickly wipes it away, trying to keep their act together. You never know who is watching, waiting, for just one single slip up. They resist the urge to shove their head into the hood of the brown jacket that hung loosely over their body. They were taught better. 'Taught' being used vaguely. 

As they slowly walk along with the crowd of people exiting the train station, they spare a quick glance at the sign ahead of them. 

'Bine ati venit la Bucuresti' (welcome to Bucharest).

Romania, they thought. There are quite a few blind spots in this country where they can hide. If it was possible to make it to them, they should be fine. At least for a couple weeks. They'll have to keep moving. Never stay too long in one place, or else they will find them. HYDRA is good at that. But they 'taught' them to be better than the best. 

They step onto a main street, cars and lorries going by, constantly being delayed by civilians trying to cross the road. They just keep walking. 

They spot a small multi-purpose shop. It would be too hard to steal from them, every corner will be watched and employees will be vigilant. Small businesses have a lot of natural backing. Their eyes follow the street downwards to a chain clothes shop. Perfect. 

One quick sweep round the shop and they exit through the back with a black hoodie, fingerless gloves and a green beanie. One quick change in the back alley and off back down the main street they go. The beanie was supposed to cover their very noticeable white hair without using a hood on a sunny day.

They scanned around themselves constantly, looking for any anomalies or something strange. But they soon realised, people are just strange. This made their search harder. They had only been outside of HYDRA's bases a handful of times and that was for missions. Being out on their own was completely different. 

They did however have one blessing on their side from their missions. While they were out in the world, their absorbed as much information as they can. This meant they weren't completely stranded in the world. 

They keep walking, and walking, and walking. 

Passing different businesses, cafes, office buildings and small locally owned shops, crammed in between the overbearing corporate chain shops. One small place caught their eye. There were many different flags of different colours that they didn't recognise. 'Where these countries they didn't know about? But that would be impossible, right?'

They just kept walking, and walking.

Eventually after going through a maze of streets, they find themselves upon an open square with different stalls up. Some for food, some for clothes or newspapers, some for toys and other decorative items. As they wonder down, seeing so many variations of food, clothes, décor and everything else. They couldn't help but smile. A real smile. All they could think about, for that one second, is that they were free. They were among people that didn't give two shits about them and they were completely on their own, but they had never been happier.

But that one second of bliss was broken by a distant voice. Their hearing peaked up at the familiar sound. All their memories of HYDRA hitting them at once. They slowly turned their head to the left, their body shaking and their breath getting heavier with each second. 

"Da, voi primi doar aceste cât de mult este?" (Yeah, I'll just get these how much is it?)

It was him. Their trainer, of all people. The one that went rouge and was forbidden to speak of while their were still in HYDRA. The Winter Soldier. 

"Winter?" They muttered out in pure disbelief. They soldier almost looked no different, except he wore ordinary clothes instead of tactical gear. They were frozen, ironically. They had no idea what to do. So when that decision was made for them it was almost relieving, almost.

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