xi. colonel lohmer

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"You taught me the courage of stars before you left. How light carries on endlessly, even after death." -- Sleeping at Last, Saturn

~ ~ ~

Sam faded in and out of consciousness for what felt like days.

It could have been hours. It could have been weeks. She only knew that the few times she woke up, she was in pain, she was in the dark, and something was terribly wrong.

Then, she'd pass out again.

She dreamt a lot of her brother. Sometimes, it was reliving a memory. The jokes they told, the adventures they had. Other times, it was a nightmare. Her brother's broken body on the battlefield. The letter telling her that he was gone.

She also dreamed of that blue light.

She saw it again and again. Felt the energy coursing through her body, felt the power and the pain. Like her cells had exploded and formed again. Like her body had come apart and stitched itself back together.

She watched men die on the battlefield. Heard the explosions, the gunshots. And a man's voice; the soldier who had been killed in front of her.

It's a Hydra, he'd say. A gunshot would ring out and he'd fall.

It's a Hydra.

Sam woke up with a start.

The first thing she noticed was the cold. It was freezing, her gasping breaths puffs of white amidst the otherwise darkness of the room. Slowly, she sat up.

Pain exploded through her head, her vision swimming with red. Groaning, Sam doubled over, clutching her head. 

"Smalls?"

She blinked at the stone floor. She knew that voice... didn't she? There was a faint scraping sound and Sam looked up, almost scared of what she'd see.

Blue eyes gazed through a set of bars separating them. Bucky, uniform rumbled and face stained with mud, blinked, relief flooding his face. 

"You're awake."

"Freshie!" Behind him, Gabe sat up. "You're not dead!"

Sam squeezed her eyes shut for a long moment at the shout, the pain doubling. Raising a hand, she waved it through the air. "No, not dead. But quiet down, would you?"

Someone else made a noise. She heard footsteps.

Dum Dum's voice broke the air. "Freshie!"

Sam clutched her head. Dammit.

"Guys, I am in pain," she growled, glaring at them. The three shared a cell and glancing past them, Sam saw even more 107th soldiers. She blinked, looking around. They were all in cells; more soldiers than she could count. Something dark and cold twisted in her stomach. "Are we..."

"Fun fact they don't tell you about the war," Bucky attempted a smile. But it didn't reach his eyes. "Getting captured sucks."

Captured.

Sam swallowed. "Captured? By the Germans?"

"They aren't the Germans, boy."

Sam jumped, scrambling toward the bars and whirling around. The voice had come from behind her. Directly behind her.

In the darkness sat a man. His accent was British, dark eyes heavy.

"I'm... sorry?" She stared.

"They call themselves Hydra. They're Germans, alright, but the bastards of Hitler's campaign. Double-crossers. They've got better weapons, armies." He rubbed his face. "They're crueler."

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